American Superpower

North America 1941.0308


America in World War II, the Cold War and today (8 March 1941)

Historical Map of North America & the Caribbean

When the Second World War broke out in Europe, the United States' improved relations with its neighbors allowed it to push for a Pan-American Security Zone to protect American shipping, a policy which favored the Allies, who depended on open sea lanes. When Germany conquered France soon into the War, the still-neutral US moved to support Britain, but at a price: in return for 50 aging destroyers, the British agreed to lease the US bases from Guiana to Newfoundland. However, this Destroyers for Bases deal opened the way for the far more generous Lend-Lease policy, in which the US supplied the Allies with materiel for the duration of the War.

Main Events

Clipperton restored to France

Mexico restores Clipperton Island to France, after 1931 arbitration by King Victor Emanuel of Italy rules in French favor

Japanese invasion of China

On the night of July 7, Chinese and Japanese troops exchange fire in the vicinity of the Marco Polo bridge, an important access route to Beiping (Beijing). The confused skirmish escalates into a full-scale battle in which Beiping and Tianjin fall to Japanese forces, and marks the outbreak of the Second Sino-Japanese War.

Germany invasion of Poland

Using several German-staged incidents as casus belli, Nazi Germany strikes Wieluń, Poland, with the Luftwaffe at 04:40 on 1 September 1939 - the first blow of World War II. Five minutes later, the German battleship Schleswig-Holstein opens fire on a Polish military transit depot in the Free City of Danzig, with Germany launching an all out attack on Poland's northern, western, and southern borders later that day.

Declaration of Panama

United States and other nations of the Americas sign Declaration of Panama, setting up Pan-American Security Zone

Second Armistice at Compiègne

Adolf Hitler and top military officials of Nazi Germany sign an armistice with representatives of the French Third Republic at 18:36 near Compiègne, France - the exact location of the 1918 armistice ending World War I. This new armistice ends French involvement in World War II on the side of the Allies and establishes a German zone of occupation in northern and western France, leaving the remainder ("Vichy France") to be governed by the French.

Britain and United States sign Destroyers for Bases Agreement

Tripartite Pact

Joachim von Ribbentrop of Nazi Germany, Galeazzo Ciano of the Kingdom of Italy, and Saburō Kurusu of the Empire of Japan sign the Tripartite Pact in Berlin, capital of Germany. The 10 year Pact recognizes the right of Germany and Italy to establish a new order in Europe while Japan does so in Greater East Asia; it also compels the contracting Powers to come to the aid of any one of them that is attacked by a Power not presently involved in either World War II in Europe or the Sino-Japanese War.

U.S. Senate passes Lend-Lease Bill

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