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|World War II|
| Allies|| British Empire & Allies|
|Commanders and leaders|
| Allied Leaders|| British Leaders|
|Casualties and losses|
| Military dead:|
| Military dead:|
The Second World War, often abbreviated to World War Two or WWII, was a conflict centered around Europe but which also affected Asia, Africa and had affects across the globe. It began with the British invasion of Ireland and ended with the Allied capture of Glasgow. Over 14,500,000 military and civilian casualties were estimated, making it one of the most deadly wars recorded.
World War I affected Europe drastically. After the defeat of Britain, France, Russia and Belgium by the Central Powers, the map had been drastically altered and civil unrest began. This would eventually lead to a popular socialist coup d'etat in France and the election of Oswald Mosley in Britain. Russia too had a communist revolution. Victorious powers were not exempt from unrest, however. Austria-Hungary collapsed in 1927-1928, leading to Germany annexing Austria. The Ottoman Empire barely clung on to any remaining possessions.
Outbreak of War
By 1939, Britain had violated the Treaty of Paris multiple times. It had re-armed drastically and on August 30th it sent an ultimatum to Ireland demanding a removal of the government and re-absorption into the United Kingdom, or to face war. Ireland ignored this and on September 1st, 1939, the United Kingdom declared war on Ireland. France soon declared war on Britain, who received help from the Commonwealth.
Invasion of Ireland
British troops made quick progress in early September, capturing Drogheda and threatening Dublin. An Irish counter-attack seemed to be working, pushing the British back to an extent. It became evident, however, that the Irish were simply not prepared for a "Lightening War," as it had been described by Mosley. The Battle of Ashborne largely shattered Irish resistance to the invasion and Dublin was captured soon after. The city was found in near-ruin after shelling from British ships.
The capture of both Galway and Cork by mid October marked the end for Ireland. The official surrender was signed on October 23rd, with Ireland to be fully annexed.
Normandy Landings and Operation Kingfisher
By now, a surge of troops had entered Britain from the Empire. The French navy was suffering serious problems, distracted by the Royal Navy around Dogger Bank. Taking advantage of this situation, troops were shepherded across the Channel, landing in Normandy and Calais in early January. This was a massive shock to the French, who had not anticipated a land attack. With the speed witnessed in Ireland, British troops tore across the French countryside, capturing key ports.
Wallonia was also attacked in March, followed by Germany and the Netherlands. It seemed likely that Paris was to soon be captured, as the government fled to Marseille and Wallonia capitulated.
During this time, a stream of English colonists arrived in Normandy and terrible war crimes were committed against civilians. These were largely to execute Master Plan West, Oswald Mosley's vision for a new Europe. This was not discovered by the international community until 1942.
The Battle of Paris, however, was a disaster for the British. The city held firm and French troops were able to re-organise and counter-attack. British tanks were low on fuel and supplies were running out. By November, despite the surrender of the Netherlands, German troops had begun to push back from their stronghold in the Rhineland which the British had only manage to damage.
As the eastern front collapsed, the Royal Navy began to pull back from the Channel. The Second Battle of Jutland had largely incapacitated the Navy, and this presented serious worries to the British high command.
Nevertheless, French troops experienced harsh resistance by the British army and colonists. This seriously slowed down the advance, but the final defeat of British troops in the east and a surge of German troops to France meant the last troops on the continent surrendered in August 1941.
Invasion of Britain
The German and French war machines were not ready for an invasion of Britain, but it seemed necessary as the German blockade was failing to starve the nation. Thus, a plan was devised and executed in March 1942, with landing across the South Coast. Southampton was quickly captured and Allied troops made quick advances. The landing force comprised mainly of French troops, with the German army poised for a later landing to capture northern Britain. By this time, Canada had withdrawn support for Britain after being threatened with military action by the United States.
Meanwhile, in Ireland, troops were being withdrawn to mainland Britain. Taking advantage of this and with the help of France, a makeshift Irish army was formed to liberate the country. The lack of British garrison made it easy for the under prepared Irish troops to advance.
On the 19th of March, lookout points in Slough and Woking reported sighting the advancing French army. Defences were immediately prepared and soon a large bombing raid flew over London. The following morning fighting broke out on the outskirts of London and the French army began to encircle the city. Heavy shelling wore down resistance, but despite being almost leaderless the British troops fought on.
By the 27th, French troops were reaching the City and resistance had all but collapsed. Buckingham Palace was captured, although had been evacuated long before. By evening fighting had reached Parliament Square where the only resistance came from the Houses of Parliament. In the early morning soldiers rushed into the building and captured it, flying the French flag from the roof.
Mosley, fleeing to Glasgow, urged all Britons to fight until the bitter end. He refused to negotiate a surrender with the Allies and instead retreated into his bunker, seldom being seen in public until the end of the war.
Thus began a campaign slowly advancing up the country, with fresh German support arriving via the north-west coast. This gradually gained momentum, by May capturing most of the northern industrial towns and threatening Scotland. A subsequent "Race to Glasgow" occurred, with the Germans entering the city on the 17th of June. Several days of fighting ensued before Mosley committed suicide in his bunker and the step-in government surrendered. All fighting in colonies soon stopped as well.
The aftermath of the war was worse felt in Britain. Peace terms meant that the entire British Empire was dismantled, with Commonwealth nations becoming independent of Crown and State. Britain itself was divided into occupation zones. Scotland and North England was occupied by Germany for several years until the creation of Scotland and Northern England, in the French sphere of influence. South England and Wales was occupied by France, the former being practically annexed. It would only receive some freedom in the 1960's and 70's.
Ireland annexed Northern Ireland in compensation for war crimes committed against it, thus meaning a stream of refugees entered the mainland. Most of these settled in North England and Scotland.
The effect on the world economy was drastic; it would take several years for all nations to recover. However, eventually France and Germany would later become economic superpowers as they had been before.