World War II
| By the end of World War I, most of the countries of the
world wanted to settle disputes without war. But the leaders of Italy, Japan,
and Germany were already desiring to take over the land of their neighboring
countries. In Italy, Benito Mussolini had taken over the government and had dreams
of turning Italy into a great empire. At about the same time in Germany, Adolph Hitler had
become the dictator and was out to conquer all of Europe. Japan was a world power
and wanted to conquer all of Asia. In September of 1939, Hitler marched into Poland
and World War II began.
By 1941 the Japanese started to conquer parts of China and southeast Asia. America was recovering from the Great Depression of 1929 and didn't want to interfere with the affairs of other governments, but they were watching Japan with alarm and decided to attempt peaceful negotiations. In December of 1941, the Japanese set out across the North Pacific in winter fog to strike the home of the United States Pacific Fleet in Hawaii. On December 7th, Pearl Harbor was basking in the tropic sun. Then without any warning, at 7:55 a.m., the Japanese began to drop their bombs. They first struck the battleships and airfields. The damage was devastating and the United States immediately declared war on Japan.
The United States Marine boats were now sunk and out of action. The U.S. then decided to send Marines overseas to fight on Japanese soil. Japan started to take over some American and British islands in the Pacific. It was during this time that the Navajo Code Talkers were recruited to fight in the war. They participated in all of the major battles in the Pacific including Guadalcanal, New Georgia, Bougainville, Tarawa, Cape Gloucester, New Britain, Kwajalenin, Roi-Namur, Enewetok Atoll, Saipan, Tinia, Guam, Peleliu, Iwo Jima, Okinawa.
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