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Section B — Chapter 13

The Second World War (1939-1945)

Class 10 - APC Modern History & Civics Solutions


Short Answers Questions

Question 1

Mention any two causes that led to the Second World War of 1939.

Answer

Two causes of second world war of 1939 are as follows —

  1. Decline of democracy and revival of aggresive nationalism — As a result of the First World War, there was an economic crisis in the various nations of the world. The democratic governments in Europe were unable to face the problems and challenges effectively. The dictators, taking advantage of the situation, offered a programme of aggressive nationalism to build up support for their respective parties.
  2. Treaty of Versailles — The treaty was based on the spirit of revenge. It was too harsh on Germany. It deprived Germany of huge tracts of its territory and its colonies in the regions of East Africa and South-West Africa. The German army was limited to 1,00,000 soldiers and the navy was limited to 15,000 soldiers while it's Air Force was banned. Germany was burdened with a huge war indemnity of 33 billion dollars to the allies. Italy was also highly dissatisfied with the treaty as she could not get any part of the German and Turkish colonial empire even though Italy fought with the Allies in the First World War.

Question 2

What was named as the Berlin-Rome-Tokyo Axis?

Or

Name the countries that came to be known as Axis States.

Answer

The collabration of the rulers of Germany, Italy and Japan developed into a close political and miltary alliance. It came to be known as Berlin-Rome-Tokyo axis. These countries came to be known as Axis States.

Question 3

Name the countries that came to be known as Allied Powers during World War II.

Answer

Britian, France, the Soviet Union and the USA came to be known as Allied Powers during World War II.

Question 4

Mention any two Hitler's acts of aggression that led to the Second World War.

Answer

Two acts of agression by Hitler which led to second world war are as follows —

  1. He broke the bonds of Treaty of Versallies by building up the german armed forces and militarised Rhineland.
  2. Hitler captured Vienna the capital of Austria.

Question 5

What does Policy of Appeasement mean?

Answer

The policy of appeasement mean "acceding to hostile demands in order to gain Peace."

Question 6

Mention any one reason why Britian and France followed an Appeasement Policy.

Answer

Britian and France followed a Policy of Appeasement as they believed that the Treaty of Versallies had been too severe to the defeated powers, especially Germany. They thought that if genuine grievances of Germany were removed, she would be satisfied and would do nothing to disturb the peace of the world.

Question 7

How did the failure of the League of Nations contribute to the Second World War?

Answer

Failure of the League of Nations led to Second World War, as when the weaker nations appealed to the League to take actions against the aggressors, the only weapon that was available with the League was the economic sanctions. But it proved ineffective against determined aggressors. The league did not take any collective action against Italy's aggression in Ethiopia or Japan's invasion of Manchuria. This led to the failure of the league as no actions were taken against the aggressors. This led Germany to occupy Austria and attack Poland, which ultimately led to the Second World War.

Question 8

What was the most immediate cause of World War II?

Or

How did the Second World War begin?

Or

Why did Hitler invade Poland?

Answer

The most immediate cause of World War II was the German invasion of Poland and demand for Danzig corridor. Hitler was demanding Danzig corridor for two reasons — First, the city of Danzig was inhabited mainly by the Germans. Second, by occupying the Danzig corridor, he could connect East Prussia with Germany. Realizing the danger, Britian and France had pledged assistance to Poland against German aggression.
On 1st september, 1939 German troops stormed Poland. On 3rd September Britian and France declared war on Germany. Thus the World War II began.

Question 9

What was the new method of warfare adopted by Hitler?

Answer

Hitler adopted a new method of warfare called 'Blitzkrieg' which means a "lighting attack".

Question 10

Why did United states declared war on Japan?

Or

How did the attack on Pearl Harbour bring the United States into World War II?

Or

What incident brought USA directly into Second World War?

Answer

On 7 December, 1941, Japan attacked the US Fleet based at Pearl Harbour in Hawaii. Japanese naval and air attack destroyed 188 aircrafts, many battleships and naval vessels of the United States. More than 2000 sailors and soldiers lost their lives. This attack brought the USA into World War II. On 8th December, 1941 USA declared war on Japan.

Question 11

Why did America decided to drop atom bombs over the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

Answer

America warned the Japanese people and the government to stop the fighting and surrender. Japan was refusing to surrender but America did not want to prolong the war. In order to force Japan to surrender and end the war, the USA dropped atom bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Question 12

What made Japan surrender to Allies?

Answer

Japan surrendered to the Allies after the USA dropped atom bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Question 13

Mention two important consequences of World War II.

Answer

Two important consequences of World War II were —

  1. Death and Devastation on an Unprecedented Scale — This war was the most destructive war in human history where millions of people lost their lives. Vast areas of Europe and Asia were left in ruins. The war created conditions of acute scarcity of food stuff, essential goods and shelter.
  2. Defeat of the Axis Powers — The Axis Powers made remarkable success initially but were defeated by the Allied Powers.

Question 14

What is meant by Cold War?

Answer

Cold War is "a state of extreme political unfriendliness between two or more countries, although they do not actually fight each other." In fact, the Cold War was neither a condition of war nor a condition of peace, it was "a state of uneasy peace."

Question 15

Mention two consequences of the Cold War.

Answer

Two consequences of Cold War were —

  1. It set in motion a mad race for armaments.
  2. It led to the formation of various military alliances such as NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) and SEATO (South-East Asia Treaty Organisation) under US leadership and the Warsaw Pact signed by the representatives of Russia and other Communist countries.

Question 16

Name any four countries belonging to the Communist Bloc.

Answer

Four countries belonging to Communist Bloc were Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria and Romania.

Question 17

Name any four countries of the Capitalist Bloc during the Cold War period that followed the Second World War.

Answer

Four countries of the Capitalist bloc during the Cold War period that followed the Second World War were Britian, France, Canada and Denmark.

Question 18

What are the full forms of NATO and SEATO?

Answer

NATO — North Atlantic Treaty Orginization
SEATO — South-East Asia Treaty Orginization

Question 19

What are the full forms of FRG and GDR?

Answer

Full forms of FRG and GDR are —

FRG — Federal Republic of Germany
GDR — German Democratic Republic

Question 20

Name the Soviet (Russian) leader who played an important role in ending the Cold War.

Answer

The Russian President Michael Gorbachev played an important role in ending the Cold War.

Structured Questions

Question 1

The Second World War was a culmination of several factors. Describe its causes with reference to the following:

(a) Grievances against the Treaty Of Versailles.

(b) Rise of Fascism in Italy and Nazism in Germany.

Answer

(a) Grievances against the Treaty Of Versailles

  1. The victorious powers had deprived Germany of huge tracts of its territory and its colonies in the regions of East Africa and South-West Africa.
  2. Her military strength was completely crushed. The German army was limited to 1,00,000 soldiers and the navy was limited to 15,000 soldiers while it's Air Force was banned.
  3. Germany was burdened with an immense War Indemnity. She had to pay a heavy sum of 33 billion dollars to the Allies.
  4. Germany had to give her merchant ships to Allies as compensation.
  5. Italy was also highly dissatisfied with the treaty as she could not get any part of the German and Turkish colonial empire even though Italy fought with the Allies in the First World War.

(b) Rise of Facism in Italy and Nazism in Germany — Italy wanted to revive the glory of the Old Roman empire. She joined the Anti-Comintern Pact in 1937 and formed a ten years alliance with Germany in 1939 to strengthen her position. Mussolini established dictatorship in Italy. Italy demonstrated her imperialistic designs by attacking Abyssinia.
In Germany, Hitler wanted to re-establish the prestige of Germany in the international field. He flouted the military clauses in the Treaty of Versailles and declared re-armament. In March 1936, Hitler made his first move to occupy Rhineland that had been demilitarised by the Treaty of Versailles. In 1938, he annexed Austria and dismembered Czechoslovakia.
Thus, rise of Facism in Italy and Nazism in Germany under Mussolini and Hitler respectively drove the countries of the world towards the Second World War.

Question 2

Give an account of the causes of the Second World War under the following headings:

(a) Policy of Appeasement adopted by England and France.

(b) Japan's invasion of China.

(c) Failure of the League of Nations.

Answer

(a) Policy of Appeasement by England and France — England and France adopted a policy of appeasement towards Germany due to the following reasons:

  1. They believed that the Treaty of Versailles had been too serve to the defeated powers, especially Germany.
  2. They thought that if genuine grievances of Germany were removed, she would be satisfied and would do nothing to disturb the peace of the world.
  3. The Western powers wanted to check the rising tide of Communism and the Russian power. They wished the Communist and the Nazis to fight each other. Hence they did nothing when Hitler began to rearm Germany in complete violation of the terms of the Treaty of Versailles.

(b) Japan's invasion of China — An important act of aggression after the First World War was the invasion of China by Japan in 1931. China appealed to league of nations to declare sanctions against Japan. Britian and France, the leading members of the league did not give any attention to the appeal. Thus Japan occupied Manchuria and setup a government there. In 1933 Japan left the League of Nations and started occupying the British and American properties in China. Britian and France followed the policy of appeasement thinking that Japanese could be used to weaken China.

(c) Failure of the League of Nations — Failure of the League of Nations led to Second World War, as when the weaker nations appealed to the League to take actions against the aggressors, the only weapon that was available with the League was the economic sanctions. But it proved ineffective against determined aggressors. The league did not take any collective action against Italy's aggression in Ethiopia or Japan's invasion of Manchuria. This led to the failure of the league as no actions were taken against the aggressors. This led Germany to occupy Austria and attack Poland, which ultimately led to the Second World War.

Question 3

How did the demand for Danzig Corridor and Hitler's invasion of Poland become an immediate cause of World War II?

Answer

The most immediate cause of World War II was the German invasion of Poland and demand for Danzig corridor. Hitler was demanding Danzig corridor for two reasons — First, the city of Danzig was inhabited mainly by the Germans. Second, by occupying the Danzig corridor, he could connect East Prussia with Germany. Realizing the danger, Britian and France had pledged assistance to Poland against German aggression.
Poland was accused of committing atrocities against Germans living there. On 1st september, 1939 German troops stormed Poland. On 3rd September Britian and France declared war on Germany. Thus the World War II began.

Question 4

With reference to the consequences of Second World War, explain briefly:

(a) Defeat of Axis Powers and Division of Germany

(b) Effect of World War II on Japan

Answer

(a) Defeat of Axis Powers and Division of Germany — The War resulted in the overthrow of the Fascist and Nazi dictatorships. German, Italian and the Japanese dictatorial regimes surrendered to the Allies.

  1. The Allies occupied Germany and it was partitioned into four Zones to be administered by Britain, France, United States and the Soviet Union (Russia).
  2. In 1948 Britain, France and the United States agreed to merge the three Zones under their control to form the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) with Bonn as its Capital. In 1949 the Soviet Zone covering the Eastern part of Germany formed the German Democratic Republic (GDR) with East Berlin as its Capital.
  3. The Two Germanys came under the influence of two different ideologies. GDR emerged as a Communist State and FRG had a liberal Democratic System.
  4. The City of Berlin had also been divided into West Berlin and the East Berlin.

(b) Effect of World War II on Japan — Japan was brought under the control of the American General Mac Arthur. The Japanese emperor henceforth acted as a constitutional Monarch. By 1949 American control ended and with the help of America Japan made rapid growth economically.

Question 5

With reference to the defeat of Axis Powers in World War II, explain briefly:

(a) End of Fascism in Italy

(b) Effects of bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Answer

(a) End of Fascism in Italy — In July 1943 the Allies attacked Italy. After occupying Sicily, they marched on Rome. Mussolini was dismised and the new government of Badoglio surrendered to Allies.However, minor battles continued until April 1945. Mussolini managed to escape and tried to flee. On 28th April, 1945 he was caught by Italians themselves. He and his mistress were shot dead. That was the end of Fascism in Italy.

(b) Effects of bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki — On 6th August, 1945 the first atom bomb was dropped on the City of Hiroshima. Within a few seconds nearly 80,000 lives were lost and another 70,000 were grievously wounded. On 9th August, 1945 another bomb was dropped on Nagasaki. The bombs killed more than 3 lakh people in these two cities. Many more were left crippled for the whole of their life. In Japan the future generations were also doomed. Those who survived were no better than "the living corpses". They had their skins hanging in sherds, their hair scorched to the roots.
As a consequence of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan surrendered on 15th August, 1945 and the formal Armistice to stop fighting was signed on 2nd September, 1945 bringing an end to the Second World War.

Question 6

With reference to the consequences of World War II, explain briefly:

(a) Emergence of the Cold War and its consequences.

(b) Formation of the United Nations

Answer

(a) Emergence of the Cold War and its consequences — After World War II, the United states and Russia emerged as great powers in the world. The entire world was divided into two Power Blocs — Democratic or the Capitalist Bloc led by the USA and Communist Bloc led by the Soviet Union. This led to the emergence of Cold War between the two.
The consequences of Cold War were:

  1. It set in motion a mad race for armaments.
  2. It led to the formation of various military alliances such as NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) and SEATO (South-East Asia Treaty Organisation) under US leadership and the Warsaw Pact signed by the representatives of Russia and other Communist countries.
  3. It led to one crisis after another such as the Berlin Blockade (1948-1949), crisis over missiles in Cuba (1962) and military intervention in Czechoslovakia.

(b) Formation of United Nations — The horrors of the two World Wars and the failure of the League of Nations led to a meeting of the Big Three — Roosevelt (President of the USA), Churchill (Prime Minister of Britain) and Stalin (Premier of the USSR) at Yalta in February 1945. They resolved to convene a conference of the representatives of all nations at San Francisco to draw up the 'Charter of the United Nations.' This led to the establishment of the United Nations Organisation on October 24, 1945.

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