As with any war, World War II had many events that changed much about the direction in which the war was headed and how everyone was involved. For the United States, three such turning points were the Battle of Midway, D-day, and the Allies’ success in Italy. Each of these events had significant impact on the state of America’s involvement in the war.
In the Battle of Midway, Japan attempted to seize the island of Midway, located over one thousand miles northwest of Honolulu. If Japan could secure the island, it would have a perfect base from which to launch devastating attacks on Pearl Harbor. In the Battle of Midway, the United States fought the Japanese by aircraft in June of 1942. After losing four important carriers and many planes, the Japanese invaders broke off the fighting. From this point onward, Japan’s actions were mainly defensive, the defeat having ended their offensive attacks. This allowed for the United States to seize initiative in the Pacific for the first time.
D-day, June 6, 1944, marks the first day of the Battle of Normandy. 46 vessels were involved in this invasion of France, and began pushing the Germans out of France. Causing the Germans to retreat was a huge success on the part of the Allies. After breaking down the German defense of Normandy, the American’s moved onto an invasion of Germany. D-day and the battle of Normandy eventually led to the first American takeover of a German city, Aachen in October of 1944. The retreat of the Germans and the takeover of Aachen were both vitally important milestones for America and the Allies.
The success in Italy meant the first major defeat of the three Axis countries (Germany, Japan, and Italy). In September of1943, Italy “surrendered unconditionally” after Mussolini was deposed. The Allies triumph in Italy not only opened up the Mediterranean, but diverted some German divisions from French and Soviet battle lines. It also allowed more time for the Soviets to advance in Eastern Europe,...
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