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Map with the Participants in World War II:

Dark Green: Allies before the attack on Pearl Harbour
Light Green: Allied countries that entered the war after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour.
Orange: Axis Powers

World War II was primarily fought between two large alliances. The Axis Powers were a group of countries led by Nazi Germany and the Empire of Japan, and are considered the aggressors of the conflict. The Allies, led by the United Kingdom and, until its defeat, France, were joined in the European theatre by the Soviet Union in June 1941 and by the United States in December 1941. In the Asia-Pacific theatre, the Allies were led by the Republic of China from the invasion of China by Japan in 1937 and then joined by the United States in 1941 after the attack on Pearl Harbour.

The Axis
Originally founded on the concept of the Rome-Berlin-axis (the Pact of Steel), later the Tripartite Pact, the Axis was not primarily a formal alliance. Each of the major countries went to war on their own initiative (Nazi Germany in 1939, Italy in 1940, and Japan in 1937 against China and 1941 against USA), and not necessarily to assist each other. There was little sharing of technology or resources, and also little in the way of cooperative strategic planning between the major Axis Powers.

With the demise of Italy, Germany and Japan each functioned as wholly separate powers, each conducting the war in their theatre (Germany in Europe and Japan in the Pacific). There were a number of smaller powers on the side of the Axis, although for the most part the war effort was directed and powered by Germany and Japan.

The Allies
Like the Axis, the Allies were not a fully cohesive alliance. The original Allied countries, bound by their commitment to the security of Poland, were led by the United Kingdom and France. As other countries were invaded by Nazi Germany, they were added to the Allied ranks. The fall of France left the United Kingdom as the sole remaining major country of the Allies. Most of the remainder consisted of the British Commonwealth and forces commanded by various governments-in-exile.

While the European war did not officially start until the 1939 invasion of Poland by Germany and the Soviet Union, the war began much earlier in Asia and Africa with the Italian invasion of Ethiopia in 1936 and the Japanese invasion of China in 1937. Subsequently, with the war spreading to Europe and the Pacific Ocean, China, with one-third of the country under occupation, dispatched its forces to help the British defend India against Japan and recapture Burma (now Myanmar) in 1944.

In 1941, with Nazi Germany's attack on the Soviet Union, the British accepted the Communist Soviet Union into their alliance. Previous to the attack, the United Kingdom was unsure of how to deal with the Soviet leadership, as it had been viewed as an aggressor against Britain's ally Poland, though Winston Churchill in 1939 said that the new Soviet-German border formed an anti-Nazi front, which Hitler could never break. This passage many consider as an attempt to provoke Hitler against the USSR. However, once the Soviet Union joined the Allies, it mounted the major effort to eliminate the main forces of German Wehrmacht.

Following the Japanese Pearl Harbour attack in 1941, the United States formally entered the war, committing itself to assisting the Allies in both theatres of war. The United States had been a major contributor of resources and production for the war effort prior to the attack on Pearl Harbour, shipping material to most of the Allies to assist their forces, but after the Japanese attack, the United States began contributing its own forces to combat.

A much larger number of countries joined the Allies during the war than joined the Axis. Not only did the countries attacked by the Axis join, but later in the war, many smaller countries not directly involved in the war joined the Allies to ensure their own security as well as to gain the support of the Allies economically and militarily during and after the war.

National impacts

Each country involved in or affected by World War II is listed with a brief description of its role in the conflict.
Note: Countries are listed alphabetically.

King Mohammed Zahir Shah successfully kept his isolated kingdom out of the war. Oil prices went up and increased trade with Afghanistan making it richer throughout the war.

Albania was forcibly annexed by Italy in 1939 shortly after Germany had seized Czechoslovakia. Albania had no ability to withstand the invasion, and ultimately became Italy's launching point for its later invasion of Greece. When this failed, Greek troops launched a counter-offensive and sought to capture some Albanian territory from Italy. Once the German Balkan Campaign was completed in 1941, Albania served as the base for the Italian garrison in the Balkans, which was replaced by German forces when Italy declared for the Allies in 1943.

Andorra remained officially neutral for the duration of World War II. At the beginning of the war, a small detatchment of French troops was stationed in the country due to the Spanish Civil War, but these forces were withdrawn in 1940. When France fell, Philippe Pétain of the Vichy regime was declared the new French Co-prince. After the German invasion of Vichy France in 1942, a German military force moved to the Andorran border near Pas de la Casa, but did not cross. In response, a Spanish force was established at La Seu d'Urgell, but it too remained outside Andorran territory. In 1944, Charles de Gaulle established a new provisional government, and assumed the position of French Co-Prince. He ordered French forces to occupy Andorra as a "preventative measure" to secure order.

Throughout the war, Andorra was used as a smuggling route between Spain and Vichy France, and an escape route for people fleeing German-occupied areas.

Under the militaristic government of Gral. Edelmiro T. Farrell, Argentina was originally sympathetic to the Axis Powers. However, for political reasons, Argentina joined other Latin American countries and declared war on Germany late in the conflict. Their contribution was minimal.

Australia was among the first countries to declare war on Germany, on September 3, 1939. More than one million Australians, both men and women served in the war. Although it was ill-prepared for war, the Australian government had soon dispatched Royal Australian Air Force squadrons and personnel to serve with the Royal Air Force. The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) commenced operations against Italy after its entry into the war in June 1940. Later that year the Australian Army entered campaigns against Italy and Germany in North Africa and Europe. German submarines and raiding ships operated in Australian waters throughout the war. The most intensive and numerically largest part of Australia's war effort came after the outbreak of hostilities with Japan in late 1941. The Australian mainland came under direct attack for the first time in 1942, when Japanese aircraft made a major bombing attack on Darwin. They also attacked many other towns in northern Australia, and Axis covert raiding ships and submarines struck at shipping and shore targets around Australia, including a major submarine attack on Sydney Harbour.

For the remainder of the war, the Australian war effort was concentrated in south-east Asia and the South West Pacific Area: they were involved from January 1942 in Malaya, the Dutch East Indies and the Australian territory of New Guinea. Before the bulk of the Australian Army had returned from overseas, from July onwards a small number of Militia troops fought a stubborn rearguard action in the trying conditions of the Kokoda Track. In August 1942, at the Battle of Milne Bay, Australian infantry became the first Allied soldiers to defeat Japanese ground forces during the war. The bitter and deadly New Guinea campaign came to occupy the attention of most of the Australian armed forces until 1945. Later that year, as the war drew to a close, Australian forces led the campaign to retake Borneo.

Austria became part of Germany in 1938 amongst popular acclaim during the Anschluss. After the defeat of the Axis Powers, the Allies occupied Austria at the end of World War II in Europe until 1955, when the country again became a fully independent republic under the condition that it remained neutral.

The Shiekh of Bahrain declared war on Germany on September 10, 1939. Bahraini forces fought under British command in the Middle East theatre.

Like the Netherlands, Belgium declared its neutrality in an effort to avoid being caught in another war between Germany and France. Nazi Germany however did not respect Belgium's neutrality and marched through Belgium as part of the invasion of France in 1940. Thus, Belgium joined the Allies and maintained a government-in-exile with control over its colonial possessions until the country was liberated in 1944.

Bolivia was one of many Latin American countries to declare war on Germany late in the war, joining the Allies on 4 December 1943. Shortly after war was declared, the President of Bolivia, Enrique Peñaranda, was overthrown in a coup. The new ruler, Gualberto Villarroel, had fascist and anti-Semitic leanings, but foreign pressure compelled Villarroel to remain at war and to purge the more extreme Nazi sympathizers from among his supporters. Bolivia was a supplier of vital war material, tin, to Allied militaries.

Brazil was under the dictatorship of Getúlio Vargas, and maintained its neutrality until the beginning of 1942. After the German attack against Brazilian ships in the Atlantic Ocean and in Pearl Harbor, Brazil sided with the Allies, declaring war against Germany and Italy in 1942. Brazil helped to patrol the South Atlantic and sent the 25,000 strong Brazilian Expeditionary Force to fight in Europe in 1944, being the only Latin American nation to send troops to Europe. This army joined the U.S. Fifth Army under General Mark Wayne Clark and participated in the Italian campaign until the end of war.

Bulgaria was a minor German ally, signing the Tripartite Pact in March 1, 1941, their main contribution being transit rights for German units involved against Yugoslavia and Greece. Many Bulgarians were captured in Stalingrad.

In the beginning of September 1944, the Bulgarian government declared war on Germany. After the Communist-dominated coup d'etat of September 9 and the simultaneous arrival of Soviet troops in the country, four Bulgarian armies attacked the German positions in Yugoslavia. An armistice was signed with the Allies in Moscow on Oct. 28, 1944. After the Nazis fled Yugoslav territory, the 1st Bulgarian army continued its offensive in Hungary and Austria. It managed to withstand the Nazi offensive on the Drava.

Bulgaria's participation in WW2 ended when its soldiers met their British comrades-in-arms in Klagenfurt in May 1945. More than 10 000 Bulgarian troops died in the battles against the Nazis; about 30 000 were wounded.

As a member of the Commonwealth, Canada declared war on Germany within days of the invasion of Poland (on September 10, 1939). Unlike World War I, however, Canadian units remained more independent of British command, and they played an important role in Allied campaigns in western Europe. Canadian forces contributed heavily in the air raids against Germany, the Battles of Britain, the Battle of the Atlantic, the Italian campaign and D-Day, as well as the subsequent campaigns in north west Europe. In Italy, an army corps was fielded beginning in January 1944, and forces in Normandy built up from a single division in June 1944 to a full corps in July 1944, and the activation of an Army in August 1944, under which several foreign national formations were under command, including at various times British, Polish, Dutch and American forces.

In March 1945, both I and II Canadian Corps came under command of First Canadian Army in The Netherlands after the former was repatriated from Italy in February. From 1941, Canadian forces also participated in the defence of British territories against Japanese forces, especially Hong Kong where an under strength brigade was deployed and ultimately destroyed. As the war in Europe wound down, from late 1944, many Royal Canadian Navy ships and personnel were transferred from the Atlantic to join the British Pacific Fleet. About one million Canadians served in uniform during WWII.

The island of Sri Lanka, or Ceylon, as it was then called, was used as a naval base for allied operations. On 5 April 1942 over 300 aircraft from Japanese carriers bombed the island. Winston Churchill called it "the most dangerous moment" of World War II, as the Japanese fleet wished to have a surprise attack on the British fleet. They did not see a repeat of the attack at Pearl Harbor as the British ships were moved to Addu Atoll, 600 miles south-west of Ceylon. Nevertheless, the British Eastern Fleet lost an aircraft carrier, two cruisers and two destroyers, while the RAF saw its squadrons massacred. The British fleet retreated to East Africa until 1944.

The Ceylon Garrison Artillery on Horsburgh Island in the Cocos Islands mutinied on the night of 8/9 May, intending to hand the islands over to the Japanese. The mutiny took place partly because of the agitation by the Lanka Sama Samaja Party. The mutiny was suppressed and three of the mutineers were the only British Commonwealth troops to be executed for mutiny during the Second World War. Bombadier Gratien Fernando, the leader of the mutiny, was defiant to the end, confident of his place in the annals of history as a fighter for freedom.

No Sri Lankan combat regiment was deployed by the British in a combat situation after the Cocos Islands Mutiny, although Supply & Transport Corps troops were used in rear areas in the Middle East. The defences of Sri Lanka were beefed up to three British army divisions because the island was strategically important, holding almost all the British Empire's resources of rubber. Rationing was instituted so that Sri Lankans were comparatively better fed than their Indian neighbours, in order to prevent disaffection among the natives.

Sri Lankans in Malaya and Singapore enlisted in the Lanka Regiment of the Indian National Army to fight on the side of the Japanese. While there was a plan to land them in Sri Lanka to start a guerrilla war, they never actually saw action.

Initially, Chile chose to remain neutral in the war, having close trading links with Germany. Later in the war, however, Chile distanced itself from the Axis powers, and the Chilean government took steps to dismiss pro-German military officers. Relations with Axis countries were broken in 1943, and in 1945, Chile declared war on Japan.

Already engaged in war with Japan, as well as enduring a civil conflict between the Kuomintang and the Communist Party of China when the war began, the Chinese Nationalist Government's full attention was within her borders in resisting the Japanese during the war. However, Chiang Kai-shek still managed to send troops to Britain's aid in Burma, in early 1942. China's participation in the war was also pivotal in a sense that more than 1 million Japanese military personnel were sent to China in order to finalise its conquest. Japanese casualties in China are estimated at 1.1 million.

Many of China's urban centres and industrial resources were occupied by Japan for most of the war. China suffered a large death toll from the war, both military and civilian. One of the most serious atrocities against Chinese civilians by the Japanese force was committed in December 1937 after the fall of Chinese capital Nanking (now Nanjing). Hundreds of thousands of Chinese civilians (some reports the number upward to 300,000) living in Nanking were executed by the Japanese occupation force within one month. After the war, China became one of the main victorious countries and gained one of the permanent seats in the United Nations Security Council.

After the war ended, the Communists and Nationalists went back to fighting each other, the Communists ultimately driving the Nationalists off the mainland to Taiwan.

After the attack on Pearl Harbour, Colombia broke diplomatic relations with the Axis powers. Then, in 1943, the U-505 German submarine destroyed a Colombian schooner, which caused Colombia to declare a "status of belligerency" against Germany. The German ambassador left the country and measures of control were implemented, including concentration of German citizens in designated areas.

Costa Rica
Costa Rica joined the Allies late in the war. The leftist administration of President Rafael Ángel Calderón Guardia was hostile to Nazism, and introduced a number of measures to decrease German influence in the country. Costa Rica declared war on Japan the day after the attack on Pearl Harbour, and on Germany and Italy shortly afterwards. It allowed the United States to establish an airfield on Cocos Island.

Cuba joined the Allies on the 8th of December 1941, when it declared war on Japan. On the 11th, it also declared war on Germany and Italy. The United States naval station at Guantanamo Bay served as an important base for protecting Allied shipping in the Caribbean, and on 15 May 1943, a Cuban warship sank a German submarine in waters near Havana. Cuba began to plan a conscription program in order to contribute troops, but this had not eventuated by the end of the war.

Czechoslovakia was dismembered by Nazi Germany, starting with Neville Chamberlain's Munich Agreement with Hitler in 1938 and the German–Italian Vienna Awards. A Nazi-dependent puppet regime led by Jozef Tiso was ultimately inserted in Slovakia. Part of southern Slovakia was annexed by Hungary. The Slovak National Uprising, commenced in August 1944, was put down by German forces at the end of October, however partisans continue fighting in the hills till the end of the war. In April, 1945, the Red Army defeated the Germans and ousted Tiso's government, annexing part of eastern Slovakia to the USSR.

Denmark remained neutral from the beginning of the war until it was invaded and occupied by Germany on April 9, 1940 as part of Operation Weserübung. Denmark's government remained in function in Copenhagen until 1943 and joined the Anti-Comintern Pact. After 1943 the occupation of Denmark was administered by the German Foreign Ministry. May 10, 1940, Iceland was invaded by the British, and in 1944 declared independent. In 1945, Bornholm was invaded by the Soviet Union while the German forces in the rest of Denmark gave up on May 4, 1945.

Dominican Republic
One of the Caribbean Countries to join the Allies late in the war.

Another of the South American nations to join the Allies late in the war (joined against Germany on February 2, 1945; let USA use Baltra Island for a naval base).

Egypt at the time was under the rule of the British Empire, and it was seen by both the Axis and the Allies as a vital strategic point, because of access to the Suez Canal. The King of Egypt placed his Navy at the disposal of the British. Initially Egypt was targeted by Italy, but after a heavy defeat by the British forces under the command of General Wavell, the Germans were compelled to enter the fray with a division under the command of General Erwin Rommel.

Rommel's successes in the deserts of Libya and west Egypt, and the fact that they came to within 100 miles of Cairo, gave the Allied forces (in particular the British) a major fright. The revolutionary officers that eventually came to power in 1952 (led by Colonel Abdel Nasser) plotted to support the Germans in their push for Cairo, seeing a German victory as an opportunity to liberate Egypt from the British colonial occupation.

El Salvador
From 1931 to 1944, El Salvador was ruled by Maximiliano Hernandez Martinez, an admirer of Hitler and Mussolini. Nonetheless, the dictator declared war on both Japan (December 8, 1941) and Germany (December 12, 1941) shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor, for economic reasons. El Salvador's economy depended heavily on the United States. Martinez removed Germans from the government, and interned Japanese, German, and Italian nationals. The Second World War made Salvadoreans leery of their dictatorship and a general national strike in 1944 forced Martinez to resign and flee to Guatemala.

The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact between Germany and the Soviet Union left Estonia in the Soviet sphere of interest. After the war broke out between Germany and Poland, Polish submarine ORP Orzeł escaped to Tallinn which lead to the Orzeł incident. The Soviet Union, who at the time was in war with Poland, accused Estonia of harboring Orzeł and not disarming it. The Soviet Union threatened Estonia with war, if Estonia did not agree with the mutual assistance pact, which required allowing the Soviet Union to build military bases into Estonia. Estonia, convinced that winning a war against Soviet Union was impossible agreed on September 28, 1939.

The Soviets conducted a coup with support of the Red Army in June 1940, and an election was held with great Soviet political influence. The new government took command and the Estonian Socialist Republic (ESR) was proclaimed on July 2, 1940. The ESR was formally "accepted" into the Soviet Union on August 6 and the official name of the country became the "Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic". Estonia was occupied by Germany in 1941 after war broke out between Germany and the Soivet Union. Many Estonians took part in anti-Soviet resistance on the side of Nazi Germany and participated in the Holocaust. Estonia was re-occupied by the Soviet Union in 1944. The Soviet Union restored the Estonian Socialist Republic and Estonia remained a part of the USSR until 1991.

Ethiopia had been invaded by Italy in 1936 after the Abyssinia crisis in an attempt to show off its military might. The nation was liberated in 1941 by British forces, and Emperor Haile Selassie was returned to the throne after exile.

Fiji was a British colony during World War II. The Fiji Defence Force served with New Zealand Army formations, under the Allied Pacific Ocean Areas command.

Finland was left to the Soviet sphere of interest in Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, and when it refused to allow the USSR to build bases on its territory, was attacked by Soviet forces on the Winter War (November 30, 1939 - March 13, 1940). After the war Finland sought security from Sweden and Britain but was thwarted by Soviet threats and German actions. Then Finland pursued better relations with Nazi Germany to counter the continued Soviet pressure. This produced cooperation between the countries, which led to a Soviet pre-emptive air attack on Finland after the start of Operation Barbarossa, thus beginning the Continuation War (June 25, 1941 - September 4, 1944), where Finland was a co-belligerent of the Nazi Germany. Britain declared war on Finland in December 6, 1941, but the United States never did. To secure military support needed to stop Soviet offensive coordinated with D-day, the Ryti-Ribbentrop Agreement was signed on June 26, 1944, in which Finland and Nazi Germany became active allies. An armistice was signed after the Soviet offensive was stopped and Wehrmacht was retreating from the Baltic States. The treaty required Finland to expel all German troops, which led to Lapland War (September 15, 1944 - April 25, 1945). Peace with the Soviet Union and Britain was concluded in the Paris Peace Treaties, 1947.

France was one of the original guarantors of Polish security, and as such joined with the United Kingdom at the start of the war as a leader of the Allies. In 1940, France was quickly defeated by Nazi Germany, leading to the foundation of Vichy France. The Free French Forces of the French National Committee, a London-based exile group, were formed to maintain the French commitment to the Allies and liberate French territory occupied by Germany. They played an important role in the battles of the Western Front. France was liberated by the Allies in 1944 and the French Fourth Republic became a permanent member of the Security Council of the United Nations and founding member of NATO after the war.

Nazi Germany was the primary Axis Power in the European Theatre led by Adolph Hitler. The surrender of the German forces May 4–8 signalled the end of the war in Europe.

Greece dealt the first victory for the Allies by resisting initial attempts of Italian invasion and pushing Mussolini's forces back into Albania. Hitler was reluctantly forced to send forces and delay the invasion of the Soviet Union by six weeks. The Germans also met fierce resistance on the island of Crete as the paratroopers suffered almost 7,000 casualties. These heavy losses eliminated the option of a massive airborne invasion of the Soviet Union and further expansion in the Mediterranean saving Malta, Gibraltar, Cyprus, and the Suez Canal from airborne invasion.

Guatemala initially stayed out of World War II, with President Jorge Ubico declaring the country's neutrality on 4 September 1941. This pronouncement was reinforced on 9 September with another declaration. Ubico implemented strong prohibitions on Nazi propaganda in Guatemala, which had one of Latin America's largest German immigrant populations. Later, Guatemala moved into the Allied camp — on 9 December 1941, it declared war on Japan, and three days later, it declared war on Germany and Italy.

Haiti remained neutral in World War II until the bombing of Pearl Harbour, declaring war on Japan the day after the attack, and on Germany and Italy shortly afterwards. Haiti gave food supplies to Allied forces and hosted a detachment of the United States Coast Guard but did not contribute troops. The President of Haiti, Élie Lescot, introduced a number of unpopular emergency measures during the war, which critics claimed were designed to increase his power. Lescot was deposed the year after the war ended.

Honduras was initially neutral in the war, but joined the Allied side after the attack on Pearl Harbour. It declared war on Japan on 8 December 1941, and on Germany and Italy on 13 December. It contributed food and raw materials to the Allied war effort, but did not send troops.

Hong Kong
Hong Kong was under the jurisdiction of the British, but came under the control of the Japanese after the gruelling Battle of Hong Kong drew to a close on Christmas Day of 1941. The city was liberated in 1945.

Hungary was a significant German ally throughout the war and signed the Tripartite Pact in November 20, 1940.

Over two and a half million Indian citizens fought during the war.

On September 12, 1939 the Upper House of the Central Legislature of India sent a message of admiration to Poland. On the same day the Aga Khan placed his services at the disposal of the Government of India.

The Fifth Indian Division fought in the Sudan against the Italians before being moved to defend Libya against the Germans. The Division was then moved to Iraq to protect the oilfields. After this the division was moved to the Burma front, together with eight other Indian Divisions, and then occupied Malaya. It was finally moved to Java to disarm the occupying Japanese garrison.

The Fourth Indian Division fought in North Africa, Syria, Palestine and Cyprus before being sent into Italy. Together with the 8th and 10th Divisions it participated in the taking of Monte Casino, after which it was moved to Greece.

Over 36,000 Indian members of the armed forces were killed or went missing in action, and 64,354 were wounded during the war. Indian personnel received 4,000 awards for gallantry, and 31 Victoria Crosses.

India also provided the Allies with assault and training bases, and provided huge quantities of food and other materials to British and Commonwealth forces, and to people on the British home front.

Thousands of Indians fought on the side of the Japanese in the Indian National Army.

Andaman & Nicobar Islands
On March 23, 1942, Japanese forces invaded the Andaman & Nicobar Islands. In December 1943 the Japanese-sponsored Free India Movement (Provisional Government of Free India) was formed. The Andaman Islands were renamed Shaheed Islands, and the Nicobars were renamed Sawaraj Islands. Andaman & Nicobar Islanders fought alongside the Japanese during this time. The islands were not re-occupied by the British until 6th October 1945.

During the start of the war the Allies demanded that Iran remove German nationals from Iran fearing they might be Nazi spies or harm the British owned oil but, Reza Shah refused stating that they had nothing to do with the Nazis. The Iranians by now hated the British for control of their oil and their sphere of influence on the country and the Iranians, therefore had sympathy with Germany. Iran however, like most countries did not know of the extermination of the Jews until after the war.

German demand for oil rose and the Allies worried that Germany would look to neutral Iran for help. Soon the Allies questioned themselves about Iran neutrality and they gave Reza Shah a final warning to remove the German workers. He refused once again. In August 1941, the British and Soviet troops invaded Iran (Operation Countenance) and, in September 1941, forced Reza Shah Pahlavi to abdicate his throne. He was replaced by his son Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, who was willing to fight the Axis Powers. Within months Iran entered the war on the side of the Allies and became known as "The Bridge of Victory".

Iran's geographical position was also important to the Allies. It provided a 'blue water' supply route to the Soviet Union via the port of Bandar Abbas and a specially constructed railway route. The supply routes were known collectively as the Persian Corridor. Soviet political operatives known "agitprops" infiltrated Iran and helped establish the Comintern affiliate Tudeh Party in early in 1942.

By January of 1942, Britain and the Soviet Union agreed to end their occupation six months after the end of the war.

The Soviet Union fomented revolts among Azeris and Kurds in Iran and soon formed the People's Republic of Azerbaijan (December, 1945) and the Kurdish People's Republic not long after, both being run by Soviet-controlled leaders. However, Soviet troops remained in Iran following the January 1946 expiration of a wartime treaty providing for the presence of Soviet, American, and British troops in Iran during the war.

Iraq was important to Britain through its position on a route to India and the strategic oil supplies that it provided. After the ejection of the Ottoman Turks at the end of the First World War, these were protected by a significant Royal Air Force base at Habbaniya and the maintenance of sympathetic governments.

Due to the United Kingdom's weakness early in the war, Iraq backed away from its Anglo-Iraqi Alliance with the country. When the British High Command requested to send reinforcements to Iraq, the country's Prime Minister, Nuri-es Said, allowed a small British force to land. Consequently he was forced to resign after a pro-German coup under Rashid Ali in April 1941. Later British requests to reinforce Iraq were denied by the new leadership.

The new regime secretly began negotiations with the Axis Powers. The Germans quickly responded and sent military aid by Luftwaffe aircraft to Baghdad via Syria.

Indian troops consequently invaded in mid-April 1941 and reached Baghdad and RAF Habbaniyah in May. The Iraqi army attacked Habbaniyah but quickly capitulated and Rashid Ali fled the country. Britain forced Iraq to declare war on the Axis in 1942. British forces remained to protect the vital oil supplies.

British and Indian operations in Iraq should be viewed in conjunction with events in neighbouring Syria and Persia (Iran).

The island of Ireland was divided politically between Éire (as the Irish Republic was officially called at the time) and Northern Ireland.

At the outbreak of war, Éire was still a member of the British Commonwealth but remained neutral, the only such member to do so. Although this caused some bitterness in Britain towards Éire (which lasted until quite recently), Éire could be described as a friendly or sympathetic neutral. Irish citizens were free to fill manpower shortages in Britain and join the British armed forces. Éire exported desperately needed food to Britain and allowed some over-flying by British warplanes (the Catalina flying-boat that located the Bismarck was based inland at Lough Erne in County Fermanagh and would have used Irish airspace en route to the Atlantic) and "hot-pursuit" into its territorial waters of German U-boats by Royal Naval warships.

If Éire had declared war on Germany, Britain would have gained access to sea and air bases that would undoubtedly helped to protect its shipping. On the other hand, it is doubtful whether either Britain or Éire would have had the resources to protect Irish cities from air attack in the early years of the war. Antipathy towards Britain from some or many Irish people would also have had an effect upon Éire's commitment to the war. Even as a neutral, Éire suffered. Certain strategic materials, such as coal, were limited and a state of emergency was declared.

Dublin was bombed by the Luftwaffe — to persuade Éire to remain neutral, according to some accounts. When Belfast, in Northern Ireland was heavily bombed (Belfast blitz), several fire brigades from Éire assisted in the rescue work. There were claims that the Irish Republican Army aided the Luftwaffe with information and directional flares, but these are not supported by German evidence.

Germany drafted plans for a diversionary invasion of Ireland (Operation Green) and investigated cooperation with the IRA (Operation Artur). There have been claims of joint military planning between the UK and Éire for the event of a German invasion of Ireland.

Belligerent personnel, Allied and Axis, were interned by the government of Éire.

In 1945, the Taoiseach (Prime Minister) of Éire, Eamon de Valera, paid a visit to the German Minister in Dublin to express sympathy over the death of the Führer, Adolph Hitler.

Northern Ireland
As a part of the United Kingdom, Northern Ireland participated fully as a belligerent. The particular contributions were manpower, food, industry and geographical position. Despite urgings from the Stormont government, conscription was never implemented in the region.

Italy had completed two conquests (Ethiopia and Albania) prior to its entry into World War II. Despite the Pact of Steel with Nazi Germany, Italy did not join in the war until June 1940, planning to get a share of Allied territory with the defeat of France. Italy's war effort went poorly, resulting in defeats in Greece, North Africa, and the Mediterranean Sea. Italy was invaded by the Allies in 1943 and Mussolini's government collapsed. Italy was split between an Allied-occupied south and the remnants of the Fascist government in the north, the Italian Social Republic (allied with Germany, also known as the Salò Republic). Italy would become a member of NATO after the war, but lost Istria peninsula to Yugoslavia.

Japan was part of the Axis Powers. Some people consider that World War II actually began with the invasion of China by Japan. The war ended with the capitulation of Japan after the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Japan has built back and is 1 of the most leading countries in production.

Was between USSR and Germany. These lands occupied Latvia from 1939-1945.

For Latvia and its people, World War II is a tough topic for a conversation. Depending on one’s point of view, the end of World War II was either occupation by the Soviet Union, or liberation from Nazi Germany. If one is an ethnic Russian, chances are it was liberation from the Nazis.

Lebanon was under the control of France during the war, and thus controlled by the puppet Vichy government after France's capitulation. Lebanon was wrested from Vichy France by Allied forces. De Gaulle declared Lebanon independent on November 22, 1943.

Liberia granted Allied forces access to its territory early in the war. It was used as a transit point for troops and resources bound for North Africa, particularly war supplies flown from Parnamirim (near Natal) in Brazil. Perhaps more importantly, it served as one of the Allies' only sources of rubber during the war, as the plantations of Southeast Asia had been taken over by the Japanese. The importance of this resource led to significant improvement of Liberia's transport infrastructure, and a modernisation of its economy. Liberia's strategic significance was emphasised when Franklin Roosevelt, after attending the Casablanca Conference, visited Liberia and met its President, Edwin Barclay.

Despite its assistance to the Allies, however, Liberia was reluctant to end its official neutrality and declare war on Germany. This did not occur until 27 January 1944.

Shortly following the end of World War I, Liechtenstein concluded a customs and monetary agreement with neighboring Switzerland. In 1919 the close ties between the two nations were strengthened when Liechtenstein entrusted Switzerland with its external relations. At the outbreak of war, Prince Franz Josef II, who had ascended the throne only months before, promised to keep the principality out of the war, and relied upon its close ties to Switzerland for its protection.

Attempts to sway the government did occur. After an attempted coup in March 1939, the National Socialist "German National Movement in Liechtenstein" was active but small. The organization, as well as any Nazi sympathies, virtually disappeared following the eruption of war.

It is interesting to note that many of the theories that exist concerning the Papacy, Pope Pius XII, and Nazi Germany include Liechtenstein as a component. One such theory talks of a planned German invasion of the Vatican and establishing a “puppet-papacy” in neutral Liechtenstein.

Lithuania had at first been hostile toward Nazi Germany over Memmelland, which was seized by Hitler before the war broke out and integrated into East Prussia. Later Lithuania was annexed into the Soviet Union along with Latvia and Estonia without any military resistance. This made the Lituanians side with the Germans when Hitler eventually invaded the Soviet Union.

Lithuania largely contributed to the Nazi cause, participating in the holocaust and supplying troops but after finally seeing that the Nazi's would treat them as "Untermenschen" or "lower people" they switched sides as the U.S.S.R started to push back the Germans.

Main article: Military history of Luxembourg during World War II
When Germany invaded France by way of the Low Countries, Luxembourg, despite its neutrality, was quickly invaded, occupied, and annexed by Germany until liberated by the Allies at the end of 1944.

Under British rule; occupied by Japan in 1942-45. The Malayan Communist Party (MCP), became the backbone of the Malayan People’s Anti-Japanese Army (MPAJA), which was the most effective resistance force in the occupied Asian countries.

The Legislative Council of Malta reaffirmed the people's loyalty to Britain on September 5, 1939.

Between June 1940 and December 1942 Malta was one of the most bombed place on earth, Malta became the besieged and battered arena for one of the most decisive struggles of World War II, with some historians calling this battle The Mediterranean Stalingrad The George Cross was awarded to the island of Malta in a letter dated 15 April 1942 from King George VI to the island's Governor William Dobbie: "To honour her brave people, I award the George Cross to the Island Fortress of Malta to bear witness to a heroism and devotion that will long be famous in history".

The fortitude of the population under sustained enemy air raids and a naval blockade which almost saw them starved into submission, won widespread admiration in Britain and other allied nations. The George Cross is woven into the Flag of Malta and can been seen wherever the flag is flown, for example at the United Nations and more recently at the European Parliament.

Established in 1931 as a puppet state of Japan, the state of Manchukuo was led by Pu Yi the last Emperor of China, who reigned as Emperor Kang De. The state contributed little to the war but remained a loyal ally to Japan until 1945. In 1945 the Soviet Union declared war on Japan and Manchukuo was subsequently invaded and abolished. Roughly half the state was returned to China whilst the Korean peninsula was partitioned to form North Korea and South Korea.

Mexico declared war on Germany on 1 June 1942, due to political pressure from the US government following the sinking of two Mexican oil ships in the Gulf of Mexico (it is said that a U-boat was responsible for both ships, but others say that US sunk them to pressure the Mexican government to declare war on Germany. Towards the end of the war, the Mexican Air Force's Escuadron Aereo de Pelea 201 (201st Fighter Squadron) served with the US Fifth Air Force in the South West Pacific Area.

While Prince Louis II's sympathies were strongly pro-French, he tried to keep Monaco neutral during World War II, and supported the Vichy France government of his old army colleague, Philippe Pétain. Nonetheless, his tiny principality was tormented by domestic conflict partly as a result of Louis' indecisiveness and also because the majority of the population was of Italian descent and they supported the fascist regime of Italy's Benito Mussolini. In 1943, the Italian army invaded and occupied Monaco, setting up a fascist government administration. Shortly thereafter, following Mussolini's collapse in Italy, the German army occupied Monaco and began the deportation of the Jewish population. Among them was René Blum, founder of the Opera, who died in a Nazi concentration camp. Under Prince Louis' secret orders, the Monaco police, often at great risk to themselves, warned people in advance that the Gestapo was about to arrest them.

During the war, Mongolia was ruled by the communist government of Horloogiyn Choybalsan, and was closely linked to the Soviet Union. The Mongolian Army frequently fought alongside the Red Army, and Mongolia provided supplies and raw materials to the Soviet military. Fighting broke out between Mongolia and Japan in 1939, when Japanese troops stationed in northern China launched an invasion of eastern Mongolia.

A joint Soviet-Mongolian counter-offensive, led by Soviet general Georgy Zhukov, heavily defeated the Japanese, and a pact was signed in which Japan recognised Mongolia's "territorial integrity". Japan did not attempt to invade Mongolia again, but kept a considerable number of troops stationed along the Mongolian border. As the Soviet Union withdrew troops from the east to focus on the German Operation Barbarossa, Mongolian forces became more strategically important. Towards the end of the war, on 10 August 1945, Mongolia declared war on Japan once again, and took part in the Soviet invasion of Japanese-occupied northern China.

Morocco was considered a protectorate of France during World War II. When France was defeated, Morocco came under the control of the Vichy regime, and therefore was nominally on the side of the Axis powers, although an active resistance movement operated. In November 1942, it was invaded by the Allies as part of Operation Torch. From that point, Moroccan volunteers (the Goumiere) fought on the side of the Allies.

Nepal declared war on Germany on 4th September 1939, and offered Ghurkha troops to Britain.

Like the Belgians the Dutch declared neutrality in 1939. In May 1940, after the capitulation of Norway, the Netherlands was invaded after fierce resistance against the Nazis. Rotterdam and Middelburg were heavily bombed. The Dutch joined the Allies and contributed their surviving naval and armed forces to the defense of East Asia, in particular the Netherlands East Indies. Until their liberation in 1945, the Dutch fought alongside the Allies around the globe, from the battles in the Pacific to the Battle of Britain.

Netherlands East Indies
The rich oil resources of the Dutch East Indies were arguably a prime objective of the Japanese military in its attack on the Allies from December 7, 1941. The Royal Netherlands Navy and the Royal Netherlands East Indies Army were part of the American-British-Dutch-Australian Command (ADBACOM), until the Allied forces in the Netherlands East Indies were defeated by Japan, in March 1942. Some Dutch personnel and ships escaped to Australia, from where they continued to fight the Japanese. The Dutch East Indies was occupied by the Japanese for the remainder of the war.

During World War II, Newfoundland (now Newfoundland and Labrador) was a separate Dominion and not a part of Canada. It joined the war on September 4, 1939, declaring war on Germany. Fearing that a German invasion of Newfoundland could be used as a prelude to an attack on Canada, in 1940 Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King and Newfoundland Governor Sir Humphrey T. Walwyn entered into negotiations regarding the strengthening of defence positions along the Newfoundland coast. Notwithstanding their separate political identity, the defence of Newfoundland and the Newfoundland Home Guard armed forces were integrated with the Canada military and both governments agreed to the formation of a joint coastal defence battery. As part of the Anglo-American Lend Lease agreement, the United States was granted military air and naval bases on Newfoundland territory at Argentia, Stephenville and St. John's.

Newfoundlanders were encouraged to enlist in the forces of the United Kingdom and Canada. The Royal Navy enlisted some 3500 of those whom Churchill called, "the best small boat sailors in the world." The Royal Artillery raised two regiments, the 57th (later 166th) Newfoundland Field Regiment which saw action in North Africa and Italy and 59th Newfoundland Heavy Artillery which began service as coastal artillery unit in England and later participated in the campaigns in Normandy and north-western Europe. Another 700 Newfoundlanders served in the Royal Air Force, most notably with the 125th Newfoundland Squadron. In all some 15,000 Newfoundlanders saw active service and thousands more were engaged in the hazardous work of the Merchant Navy. Some 900 Newfoundlanders (including at least 257 merchant mariners) lost their lives in the conflict and over 100 Newfoundland civilians were killed in the sinking of the SS Caribou by a German U-boat.

Newfoundland was the only location in North America to be subject to direct attack by German forces in World War II when German U-boats attacked four allied ore carriers and the loading pier at Bell Island. The carriers S.S. Saganaga and the S.S. Lord Strathcona were sunk by U-513 on September 5, 1942, while the S.S. Rosecastle and P.L.M 27 were sunk by U-518 on November 2, 1942 with the loss of 69 lives.

New Zealand
One of the original countries to declare war on Germany (on September 3, 1939), New Zealand sent a division to the European Theatre as well as participating in the Pacific. While New Zealand's home islands were not attacked, the casualty rate suffered by the military was the worst per capita of all Commonwealth nations.

During the war, Nicaragua was ruled by Anastasio Somoza García, who had assumed the presidency after a military coup in 1937. Somoza was an ally of the United States, and Nicaragua declared war on Japan immediately after the attack on Pearl Harbour. Three days later, on 11 December, Nicaragua declared war on Germany and Italy, and on 19 December, it declared war on Bulgaria, Romania, and Hungary.

Norway remained neutral from the beginning of the war until it was invaded and occupied by Germany on April 9, 1940 as part of Operation Weserübung. The Norwegian government fled the capital and after 2 months went to Britain and continued the fight in exile.

After the occupation the Germans began producing a critical component of atomic bombs in Norway, most notably deuterium oxide, also known as heavy water. On February 2, 1944, Germany's development of an atomic bomb was slowed by Norwegian and British commandos who successfully sabotaged the Norsk Heavy Water Plant and sank a ferry loaded with the deuterium oxide and other machinery needed for bomb development.

In 1944 Finnmark was invaded by the Soviet Union while the German forces in the rest of Norway gave up on May 8, 1945.

After the war, Norway became a member of NATO.

The Sultan of Oman declared war on Germany on September 10th 1939. Omanese forces fought under British command in the Middle East theatre.

Panama was under continued American control throughout the war and provided the U.S Navy with the ability to rapidly move troops from the Pacific to the Atlantic.

Paraguay's authoritarian government under Higinio Morínigo was sympathetic to the Axis powers early in the war; the country's large German community in particular were supporters of Nazism. Serious thought was given to joining the war on Germany's side, however Franklin Roosevelt managed to avoid this happening with aid and military hardware in 1942. Despite this Paraguay did not declare war on Germany until 2nd February 1945 when it was clear the Allies were going to win.

Peru remained neutral until 1942, but when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, President Manuel Prado Ugarteche became the first South American leader to declare war on the Axis Powers. Because of its ability to produce aviation fuel and proximity to the Panama Canal, the oil refinery and port city of Talara, in north west Peru, became a major US air base.

In 1941, the Philippines was a semi-independent commonwealth of the United States. The Philippine Army was commanded by the U.S. General Douglas MacArthur and the Philippines was one of the first countries invaded by Japan. Filipino forces and the U.S. Army maintained a stubborn resistance (see: Philippines campaign of 1941-42). MacArthur withdrew his headquarters to Australia, where he made his famous statement "I came out of Bataan and I shall return". Allied forces in the Philippines officially surrendered at Corregidor, on May 8, 1942.

Allied forces under MacArthur made their return from October 1944, beginning with the landings at Leyte. The United States granted full independence to the Philippines on July 4, 1946.

Poland was the first allied power to fall. In September 1939 it suffered an attack by Nazi Germany and later by the USSR. Many Polish troops and servicemen escaped the country and were integrated into the forces of the British with Polish pilots serving with distinction in the Battle of Britain. The Polish resistance was also established and along with the Greek and Yugoslavian resistance movements is remembered for its daring and brave methods of resisting occupation, often facing German forces in pitched battle. Also an army of Poles had been formed on the Soviet territory. Poles were considered to be a threat to "the master race", and thus millions of Poles were sent to concentration camps. Poland was the 4th largest contributor to the Allied cause after the U.S., Britain and Soviet Union.

For the duration of World War II, Portugal was under the control of António de Oliveira Salazar, who led a government bearing many similarities to the Franco regime in neighbouring Spain. Like Spain, Portugal remained neutral through the war, although its government was considered to have Axis sympathies, and secretly supplied tungsten to Germany. Late in the war, when the Axis Powers were in decline, Portugal allowed the British to establish a naval base in the Azores islands.

Although the Japanese military invaded and occupied neighbouring British colony of Hong Kong in 1941, they initially avoided direct interference in the affairs of Macau. Although it remained neutral territory — in much the same fashion as Portugal itself — Portuguese authorities lacked the ability to prevent Japanese activities in and around Macau. In 1943, Japan ordered the government of Macau to accept Japanese advisors. The limited Portuguese military forces at Macau were also disarmed, although it was never occupied.

Portuguese Timor
In early 1942, Portuguese authorities maintained their neutrality, in spite of warnings from the Australian and Dutch East Indies governments that Japan would invade. To protect their own positions in neighbouring Dutch Timor, Australian and Dutch forces landed in Portuguese Timor and occupied the territory. There was no armed opposition from Portuguese forces or the civilian population. Within a matter of weeks, Japanese forces landed but were unable to subdue substantial resistance, in the form of a guerrilla campaign launched by Allied commandos and continued by the local population. It is estimated that 40,000-70,000 Timorese civilians were killed by Japanese forces during 1942-45.

Romania had its first involvement in the war in providing transit rights for members of the Polish government, its treasury, and many Polish troops in 1939. During 1940, threatened with Soviet invasion, Romania ceded territory to the Soviet Union, Hungary, and Bulgaria, and following an internal political upheaval, Romania joined the Axis. As a member of the Axis, the Romanian war effort was almost entirely spent on the Eastern Front, for instance its forces took part in capture of Odessa. With the entry of Soviet troops into Romania near the end of the war, the government was replaced by a pro-Soviet one and joined the Allies as a co-belligerent for the remainder of the war. Romania became a key member of the Warsaw Pact after the war.

San Marino
Ever since the times of Garibaldi, San Marino has maintained strong ties with the Italian state. San Marino joined Italy in declaring war on Great Britain in 1940. Following the Italian surrender, San Marino immediately declared its neutrality. On 21 September 1944 San Marino declared war on Germany, which eventually occupied the nation while retreating northward. Following the war, San Marino provided for nearly 100,000 refugees.

Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia's contribution to the war effort was mainly in the form of resources. Although officially neutral the Saudis did provide the Allies with large supplies of oil. King Abdul Aziz Al-Saud, despite resenting the British and French colonial presences in the Middle East was a personal friend of Franklin D. Roosevelt (in fact the President gave King Abdul a wheelchair as a present during a 1945 visit to the kingdom). As a result Saudi Arabia remained on favourable terms with the Allies.

Singapore was a crown colony under British rule and is in a strategic location for shipping routes connecting Asia to Europe. For these reasons, Japan invaded Singapore in the Battle of Singapore from February 7, 1942 to February 14, 1942. The city was renamed Syonan and kept under Japanese occupation until the end of the war in September, 1945.

South Africa
As a member of the British Commonwealth, the Union of South Africa declared war on Germany shortly after the United Kingdom, on September 6, 1939. Several South African divisions fought under allied command in the European war. There was significant pro-Nazi sentiment among much of the Afrikaner population, but this was suppressed by the country's leader Jan Smuts.

Soviet Union
Soviet participation in World War II began with a short border war with Japan in Mongolia in 1939. Later that year, protected with the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, it invaded eastern Poland about three weeks after the Germans invaded the west of the country. During the next eleven months the Soviets occupied and annexed the Baltic states (Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania).

Following Finland's refusal of Soviet demands for military bases and a territorial swap, the Soviet Union attacked on November 30, 1939, in the Winter War. The Soviet Union also annexed Bessarabia (a Romanian province), leading Romania to ally with Germany. Germany launched a surprise attack on the Soviet Union in 1941. Thereafter, most of the German forces were concentrated on the Eastern Front. The USSR played a crucial role in the defeat of Nazi Germany, where 90% of all German resources and manpower were concentrated and depleted on the Eastern Fronts.

The Soviet Red Army mounted a successful counter-offensive during the winter, and gained the initiative with a series of major victories in 1943, culminating in the ultimate advance of Soviet forces into Eastern Europe and Germany itself in 1945, concluded with the Battle of Berlin. The Soviet Union suffered greater losses, both among civilians and military forces, than any of the other participants in the war. Following the end of the war in Europe and the American atomic bombing of Hiroshima, the USSR declared war on Japan in 1945. The Soviet Union became one of the main victors and gained one of the permanent seats in the United Nations Security Council. After the war, the Soviet sphere of influence was widened to cover most of Eastern Europe, formalized in the Warsaw Pact, to counter the western Allies and NATO. The Soviet Union came to be considered one of the two superpowers of the Cold War.

The Franco government of Spain had risen to power as a result to a significant degree of Italian and German intervention and support. Spain, which was suffering the aftermath of the recently-finished Spanish Civil War, did not have the resources to join the war on its own and Franco and Hitler did not achieve an agreement about the terms of the Spanish participation. Spain however did send volunteers to fight alongside Germans against the Soviet Union in the form of the División Azul. However, Spain was considered a non-belligerent country. As the Allies emerged as possible victors, the regime became more neutral, finally declaring its neutrality on July 1943.

Sweden maintained neutrality throughout the war, though some Swedish volunteers participated in the Winter War as well as in the Continuation War against the Soviet Union. Sweden also supplied many materials for Germany, in particular high-quality iron ore which enabled Germany to build up its army and bearings which were crucial for fighter planes, almost as tribute to avoid invasion. It should be noted that the Allies put a lot of effort into the Norwegian theatre simply to force Sweden into joining the war.

Switzerland intended to be a neutral power during the war, but German threats and military mobilizations towards its borders prompted the Swiss military to prepare for war. Though a Nazi invasion of Switzerland, codenamed Operation Tannenbaum was planned for 1940, the event never ultimately occurred as Hitler decided such a conflict would be a waste of resources at a time when he preferred to concentrate on the invasion of Britain. Unlike the Netherlands, Belgium and other western European nations which had easily fallen under Nazi invasion, Switzerland had a strong military and a mountainous geographic terrain that would have likely made an invasion long and difficult.

Swiss machine guns were placed all over mountaintops surrounding paths that lead into the country, and most bridges had already been rigged to explode should the Nazis start to invade. Although the Swiss government was anti-Nazi, Swiss troops did not intervene into the European conflict. Switzerland is thus usually regarded as the only Western European country that was able to maintain some semblance of uncontested neutrality during the entire conflict, although it did become embroiled in post-war controversies regarding the appropriation of assets belonging to Holocaust victims and also, Nazi Officials used Swiss banks to keep their money safe.

Syria was under French control throughout the war. From the French surrender in 1940 this was the 'Vichy' government that was sympathetic to the Nazi regime. Churchill had fears about the use of Syria to threaten Britain's Iraqi oil supplies. These appeared to be substantiated when Luftwaffe supply flights to the new pro-German Iraqi regime (under Rashid Ali) refuelled in Damascus.

In June, 1941, British and Free French forces invaded Syria and after giving effective opposition, the Vichy forces surrendered in July 1941. British occupation lasted until the end of the war.

The province of Iskanderoun was given to Turkey to keep them neutral in the war.

Tannu Tuva
Tannu Tuva was under effective Soviet control for the duration of the war. It entered the conflict on 25 June 1941, three days after the Soviet Union itself. Tannu Tuva was integrated directly into the Soviet Union on 11 October 1944, before the war concluded.

Thailand was an ally of Japan during the war. At the time, the country was ruled by Field Marshal Plaek Pibunsongkhram, a military dictator with nationalist leanings. Thailand remained uninvolved when war broke out in Europe, but took the opportunity of France's defeat to settle historical claims to parts of French Indochina. The conflict between Thailand and the Vichy regime is known as the French-Thai War. In 1941, the Japanese invaded the country; Phibun, while reluctant, believed that Japan's superior military power gave Thailand no choice but to order an armistice and allow the Japanese to pass through. The Premier became more enthusiastic about co-operation with Japan when the Japanese performed well in Malaya, and on December 21, a formal alliance was concluded. At noon on January 25, 1942, Thailand declared war on the United States and Great Britain. Some Thais supported the alliance, arguing that it was in the national interest, or arguing that it was better sense to ally oneself with a victorious power. Others formed the Free Thai Movement to resist. Eventually, when the war turned against the Japanese, Phibun was forced to resign, and a Free Thai-controlled government was formed. On August 16, 1945, Thailand rescinded its declarations of war.

The Queen of Tonga put all the country's resources at the disposal of Britain, and was a loyal supporter of the Allied cause throughout the war.

Transjordan was nominally a British protectorate, and the Transjordanian forces were under British command during the war.

Throughout most of the war, Turkey proclaimed neutrality while providing Germany with raw materials such as its sole supply of chromite. It was not until February 1945 that Turkey declared war on Germany in order to secure a seat in the United Nations. Turkey did not participate in any military operations.

United Kingdom
The United Kingdom was one of the original Allies, entering the war in 1939 to honour its guarantees to Poland. After the Fall of France the United Kingdom was the only allied nation left in Europe until the invasion of Greece. It remained the only one of the Big Three in the war until 1941 when the Soviet Union was invaded. The United Kingdom was heavily engaged in the Western European, Atlantic, Mediterranean, African and South East Asian theatres, and was considered one of the Big Three during Allied conferences in the second half of the war. The United Kingdom maintained close ties with the nations of the British Commonwealth and often incorporated their forces into British military operations.

Channel Islands
These islands are self-governing British dependencies, off the French coast and were the only British territory occupied by Germany. Although, legally, the Channel Islands are not a part of the United Kingdom, it's convenient to consider them here.

They were occupied by German forces after the fall of France and after British forces had been withdrawn. They played little active part in the war. Strong German defences were set up, but the islands were not assaulted, except by occasional hit-and-run commando raids. German forces surrendered at the end of the war.

Almost all Jewish people managed to flee the islands before the German occupation, but those who remained were deported to Aushwitz.

United States of America
The United States of America was neutral early in the war, although it steadily grew ties with the Allies and began providing increasing levels of assistance to them. The United States joined the Allies in December 1941 after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour, Hawaii when war on Japan was declared by Congress on December 8. Germany and Italy declared war on the United States shortly afterwards. The United States subscribed to the Allied plan to make defeat of Germany the priority, where it operated in coordination with the United Kingdom in most major operations. However, it also maintained a strong effort against Japan, being the primary Allied power in the Pacific Theatre. The U.S. played an important role in providing valuable industrial production to support the Allied war effort. After the war United States would retain military commitments to European security while providing economic investment to rebuild nations suffering devastation during the war. Politically, the U.S. would become the leader of the western Allies in forming NATO, and host the United Nations in which it gained one of the permanent seats on the Security Council.

Uruguay was neutral for most of World War II, although later joined the Allies. It declared its neutrality on 4 September 1939, although the President of Uruguay, Alfredo Baldomir, was poorly disposed towards the Axis powers. Uruguay's neutrality included a 300-mile exclusion zone extending from its coast, established as part of the Declaration of Panama. Neither side of the conflict acknowledged the exclusion zones established by the declaration, and in December, British warships and the German ship Admiral Graf Spee fought a battle not far off Uruguay's coast. This prompted a joint protest from several Latin American nations to both sides. (The Admiral Graf Spee itself took refuge in Uruguay's capital, Montevideo, claiming sanctuary in a neutral port, but was later ordered out). Later, in early 1942, President Baldomir broke of diplomatic relations with the Axis Powers. On 15 February 1945, near the end of the war, Uruguay dropped its policy of neutrality and joined the Allies.

The government of Venezuela provided vast oil resources to the Allies. It maintained a relative neutrality until the last years of war, when it finally declared war on Germany and the rest of the Axis countries.

Vichy France
After France was invaded by Nazi forces, the country was split into two parts, an "occupied sector" and a "sovereign sector" that became known as Vichy France. The Vichy regime has a pseudo-fascist government under the leadership of Marshall Petain.

Vichy France is considered to have been an Axis-friendly country, though it remained officially neutral during the conflict. Prime Minister, Pierre Laval, repeatedly sought France's entry into the war on the Axis side, but was vetoed by Petain.

Aided by French Resistance groups, all of France was ultimately liberated by the Allies, including Free French forces led by Charles de Gaulle, who had set up an anti-Vichy government in exile, and the Vichy regime toppled. Laval was executed for high treason after the war.

The Mutawakkilite Kingdom of Yemen, which occupied the northern portion of modern Yemen, followed an isolationist foreign policy under King Yahya Muhammad Hamid ed-Din. It remained neutral for the duration of the war. The southern portion of modern Yemen, known as the Aden Protectorate, was under British control.

The Kingdom of Yugoslavia was originally an allied power. However in 1941 German troops invaded the kingdom and forced British garrisons to withdraw to Greece. The country then established a puppet regime under the Nazis. Yugoslavia then developed two resistance groups, the Nationalist Yugoslavians and the Communists (headed by future president Tito). Yugoslavia was liberated in 1944 by a joint force of Communist resistance and the Red Army, Tito then established himself as Prime Minister and continued to fight Germany.