The Empire of Japan at its peak in 1942:
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Flags of Germany, Japan, and Italy draping the facade of the Embassy of Japan on the Tiergartenstraße in Berlin (September 1940)
The Naval Battle of Hakodate, May 1869; in the foreground, and of the Imperial Japanese Navy
Germany's Führer Adolf Hitler (right) beside Italy's Duce Benito Mussolini (left)
The Empire of Japan at its peak in 1942:
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Japan's Prime Minister Hideki Tojo (center) with fellow government representatives of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere. To the left of Tojo, from left to right: Ba Maw from Burma, Zhang Jinghui, Wang Jingwei from China. To the right of Tojo, from left to right, Wan Waithayakon from Thailand, José P. Laurel from the Philippines, and Subhas Chandra Bose from India
Prominent members of the Iwakura mission. Left to right: Kido Takayoshi, Yamaguchi Masuka, Iwakura Tomomi, Itō Hirobumi, Ōkubo Toshimichi
The signing of the Tripartite Pact by Germany, Japan, and Italy on 27 September 1940 in Berlin. Seated from left to right are the Japanese ambassador to Germany Saburō Kurusu, Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs Galeazzo Ciano, and Adolf Hitler.
Emperor Meiji, the 122nd emperor of Japan
Adolf Hitler, Führer and Reich Chancellor of the German People, 1933–1945
Ōura Church, Nagasaki
Engelbert Dollfuss, Chancellor of Austria, 1932–1934
Interior of the Japanese Parliament, showing the Prime Minister speaking addressing the House of Peers, 1915
Hideo Kodama, a wartime cabinet minister in the Empire of Japan
Prince Aritomo Yamagata, who was twice Prime Minister of Japan. He was one of the main architects of the military and political foundations of early modern Japan.
Japanese writer Shūmei Ōkawa, a key exponent of Japanese nationalism
Baron Masuda Tarokaja, a member of the House of Peers (Kazoku). His father, Baron Masuda Takashi, was responsible for transforming Mitsui into a zaibatsu.
Lt.Gen Hiroshi Ōshima, Japanese ambassador to Germany before and during World War II
The Tokyo Industrial Exhibition, 1907 (Mitsubishi pavilion and Exhibition halls)
German Führer Adolf Hitler along with General Walther von Brauchitsch, during the victory parade in Warsaw after the defeat of Poland, October 1939
Marunouchi District in 1920, looking towards the Imperial Palace
German Heinkel He 111 bomber aircraft during the Battle of Britain
A 1-yen banknote, 1881
German vehicles advancing during the Second Battle of El Alamein in the North African campaign
Thomas Blake Glover was a Scottish merchant in Bakumatsu and received Japan's second highest order from Emperor Meiji in recognition of his contributions to Japan's industrialization.
German soldiers during the Battle of Stalingrad in the Eastern Front campaign
Prince Katsura Tarō, thrice Prime Minister and the Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal of Japan. Katsura commanded the IJA 3rd Division under his mentor, Field Marshal Yamagata Aritomo, during the First Sino-Japanese War.
German submarine U-118 under air attack in June 1943
Map of the Japanese Empire in 1895. This map was issued shortly after the Japanese invasion of Taiwan and is consequently one of the first Japanese maps to include Taiwan as a possession of Imperial Japan.
The Duce Benito Mussolini in an official portrait
Marquess Komura Jutaro, 1911. Komura became Minister for Foreign Affairs under the first Katsura administration, and signed the Boxer Protocol on behalf of Japan.
Italian soldiers in the North African Campaign in 1941
French illustration of a Japanese assault on entrenched Russian troops during the Russo-Japanese War
Italian Fiat M13/40 tanks in the North African Campaign in 1941
Japanese riflemen during the Russo-Japanese War
Italian battleships Vittorio Veneto and Littorio during the war
Count Tadasu Hayashi was the resident minister to the United Kingdom. While serving in London from 1900, he worked to successfully conclude the Anglo-Japanese Alliance and signed on behalf of the government of Japan on January 30, 1902.
Italian Macchi C.200 fighter aircraft during the war
Port Arthur viewed from the Top of Gold Hill, after its capitulation in 1905. From left are the wrecks of Russian pre-dreadnought battleships Peresvet, Poltava, Retvizan, Pobeda and the protected cruisers Pallada
Every territory ever controlled by the Italian Empire at some point in time during World War II
Emperor Taishō, the 123rd emperor of Japan
IJN super-dreadnought battleships Yamashiro, Fusō, and battlecruiser Haruna, Tokyo Bay, 1930s
Topographic map of the Empire of Japan in November, 1918
IJN Special Naval Landing Forces armed with the Type 11 Light Machine Gun during the Battle of Shanghai
Native Micronesian constables of Truk Island, circa 1930. Truk became a possession of the Empire of Japan under a mandate from the League of Nations following Germany's defeat in World War I.
Mitsubishi A6M Zero fighter aircraft and other aircraft preparing for takeoff on the aircraft carrier Shōkaku on 7 December 1941, for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Commanding Officers and Chiefs of Staff of the Allied Military Mission to Siberia, Vladivostok during the Allied Intervention
The Empire of Japan (darker red) and territories controlled by Japanese puppet states during the war (lighter red). Thailand (darkest red) cooperated with Japan. All are members of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere.
Groundbreaking ceremony of Ginza Line, the oldest subway line in Asia, 1925. Front row, right to left: Rudolf Briske, Noritsugu Hayakawa, Furuichi Kōi, Ryutaro Nomura.
IJA paratroopers are landing during the Battle of Palembang, February 13, 1942.
Count Itagaki Taisuke is credited as being the first Japanese party leader and an important force for liberalism in Meiji Japan.
IJN Yamato-class Battleships Yamato and Musashi moored in Truk Lagoon, in 1943
Count Katō Komei, the 14th Prime Minister of Japan from June 11, 1924, until his death on January 28, 1926
Japanese Military Attaché, Makoto Onodera, visiting Fjell Fortress in Norway, 1943. Behind him is Lieutenant Colonel Eberhard Freiherr von Zedlitz und Neukrich (C-in-C Luftwaffe Feldregiment 502.), and to the right is Fregattenkapitän doktor Robert Morath (Seekommandant in Bergen). Behind Onoderas hand (raised in salute) is General Nikolaus von Falkenhorst (C-in-C German military forces in Norway).
Emperor Shōwa during an Army inspection on January 8, 1938
Japanese officers training young Indonesian recruits, circa 1945
Tokyo Kaikan was requisitioned as the meeting place for members of the Imperial Rule Assistance Association (Taisei Yokusankai) in the early days.
Bulgarian soldiers in Vardar Macedonia during the Balkans campaign
Japanese Pan-Asian writer Shūmei Ōkawa
Hungarian Toldi I tank as used during the 1941 Axis invasion of the Soviet Union
Rebel troops assembling at police headquarters during the February 26 Incident
Hungarian soldiers in the Carpathian mountains in 1944
A bank run during the Shōwa financial crisis, March 1927
MÁVAG Héja fighter aircraft, derived from the Reggiane Re.2000, an Italian fighter design
National Diet Building, 1930
Adolf Hitler meeting with NDH leader Ante Pavelić
Political map of the Asia-Pacific region, 1939
Ion Antonescu and Adolf Hitler at the Führerbau in Munich (June 1941)
Japanese troops entering Shenyang, Northeast China during the Mukden Incident, 1931
A formation of Romanian IAR 80 fighter aircraft
The Japanese occupation of Peiping (Beijing) in China, on August 13, 1937. Japanese troops are shown passing from Peiping into the Tartar City through Zhengyangmen, the main gate leading onward to the palaces in the Forbidden City.
The Romanian Mareșal tank destroyer's design was likely used by the Germans to develop the Hetzer
IJN Special Naval Landing Forces armed with the Type 11 Light Machine Gun during the Battle of Shanghai, 1937
Romanian soldiers on the outskirts of Stalingrad during the Battle of Stalingrad in 1942
Signing ceremony for the Axis Powers Tripartite Pact
Slovakia in 1941
Founding ceremony of the Hakkō ichiu (All the world under one roof) monument in 1940
Kingdom of Denmark
A map of the Japanese advance from 1937 to 1942
Mannerheim with Hitler
Victorious Japanese troops march through the city center of Singapore following the city's capture in February 1942 (Photo from the Imperial War Museum)
Finnish troops passing by the remains of a destroyed Soviet T-34 at the battle of Tali-Ihantala
Imperial Japanese Army paratroopers are landing during the Battle of Palembang, February 13, 1942.
Manchurian soldiers training in a military exercise
A model representing the attack by dive bombers from USS Yorktown (CV-5) and USS Enterprise (CV-6) on the Japanese aircraft carriers, and in the morning of June 4, 1942, during the Battle of Midway
Manchurian pilots of the Manchukuo Air Force
Group of Type 2 Ka-Mi tanks on board of 2nd class transporter of the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1944–1945
Front row in order from left to right: Karl Wolff, Heinrich Himmler, Francisco Franco and Spain's Foreign Minister Serrano Súñer in Madrid, October 1940
The rebuilt battlecruiser sank at her moorings in the naval base of Kure on July 24 during a series of bombings.
Francisco Franco (centre) and Serrano Súñer (left) meeting with Mussolini (right) in Bordighera, Italy in 1941. At Bordighera, Franco and Mussolini discussed the creation of a Latin Bloc.
The Japanese archipelago and the Korean Peninsula in 1945 (National Geographic)
Phraya Phahon (far left), Thawan Thamrong (left), and Direk Jayanama (right) with Hideki Tōjō (center) in Tokyo 1942
A drawing depicting a speech in the Imperial Japanese Diet on November 1, 1945, the end of the Second World War. In the foreground there are several Allied soldiers watching the proceedings from the back of the balcony.
German and Soviet soldiers during the official transfer of Brest to Soviet control in front of picture of Stalin, in the aftermath of the invasion and partition of Poland by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union in 1939
From left to right: Marshal Admiral Heihachirō Tōgō (1848–1934), Field Marshal Oku Yasukata (1847–1930), Marshal Admiral Yoshika Inoue (1845–1929), Field Marshal Kageaki Kawamura (1850–1926), at the unveiling ceremony of bronze statue of Field Marshal Iwao Ōyama
France during the war; Occupied and annexed zones by Germany in shades of red, Italian occupation zones in shades of yellow and striped blue, "Free zone" in blue.
Population density map of the Empire of Japan (1920).
Philippe Pétain (left) meeting with Hitler in October 1940
Population density map of the Empire of Japan (1940).
Personal flag of Philippe Pétain, Chief of State of Vichy France
An RAF officer investigates wrecked Iraqi artillery near Habbaniya.
Italian Social Republic
RSI (Repubblica Sociale Italiana) soldiers, March 1944
Greece, 1941–1944
Hitler declaring war on the United States on 11 December 1941
Italian pilots of a Savoia-Marchetti SM.75 long-range cargo aircraft meeting with Japanese officials upon arriving in East Asia in 1942.
German and Japanese direct spheres of influence at their greatest extents in Autumn 1942. Arrows show planned movements to an agreed demarcation line at 70° E, which was, however, never approximated.
War flag of the Imperial Japanese Army
Naval ensign of the Empire of Japan
Flag of the Japanese Emperor

Its principal members were Nazi Germany, the Kingdom of Italy, and the Empire of Japan.

- Axis powers

Economic and political turmoil in the 1920s, including the Great Depression, led to the rise of militarism, nationalism and totalitarianism as embodied in the Showa Statism ideology, eventually culminating in Japan's membership in the Axis alliance and the conquest of a large part of the Asia-Pacific in World War II.

- Empire of Japan

11 related topics

Alpha

The League of Nations assembly, held in Geneva, Switzerland, 1930

World War II

Global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945.

Global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945.

The League of Nations assembly, held in Geneva, Switzerland, 1930
Adolf Hitler at a German Nazi political rally in Nuremberg, August 1933
Benito Mussolini inspecting troops during the Italo-Ethiopian War, 1935
The bombing of Guernica in 1937, during the Spanish Civil War, sparked fears abroad in Europe that the next war would be based on bombing of cities with very high civilian casualties.
Japanese Imperial Army soldiers during the Battle of Shanghai, 1937
Red Army artillery unit during the Battle of Lake Khasan, 1938
Chamberlain, Daladier, Hitler, Mussolini, and Ciano pictured just before signing the Munich Agreement, 29 September 1938
German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop (right) and the Soviet leader Joseph Stalin, after signing the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, 23 August 1939
Soldiers of the German Wehrmacht tearing down the border crossing into Poland, 1 September 1939
Soldiers of the Polish Army during the defence of Poland, September 1939
Finnish machine gun nest aimed at Soviet Red Army positions during the Winter War, February 1940
German advance into Belgium and Northern France, 10 May-4 June 1940, swept past the Maginot Line (shown in dark red)
London seen from St. Paul's Cathedral after the German Blitz, 29 December 1940
Soldiers of the British Commonwealth forces from the Australian Army's 9th Division during the Siege of Tobruk; North African Campaign, September 1941
German Panzer III of the Afrika Korps advancing across the North African desert, April-May 1941
European theatre of World War II animation map, 1939–1945 – Red: Western Allies and the Soviet Union after 1941; Green: Soviet Union before 1941; Blue: Axis powers
German soldiers during the invasion of the Soviet Union by the Axis powers, 1941
Soviet civilians leaving destroyed houses after a German bombardment during the Battle of Leningrad, 10 December 1942
Japanese soldiers entering Hong Kong, 8 December 1941
The USS Arizona (BB-39) was a total loss in the Japanese surprise air attack on the American Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, Sunday 7 December 1941.
US President Franklin D. Roosevelt and British PM Winston Churchill seated at the Casablanca Conference, January 1943
Map of Japanese military advances through mid-1942
US Marines during the Guadalcanal Campaign, in the Pacific theatre, 1942
Red Army soldiers on the counterattack during the Battle of Stalingrad, February 1943
American 8th Air Force Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress bombing raid on the Focke-Wulf factory in Germany, 9 October 1943
U.S. Navy SBD-5 scout plane flying patrol over USS Washington (BB-56) and USS Lexington (CV-16) during the Gilbert and Marshall Islands campaign, 1943
Red Army troops in a counter-offensive on German positions at the Battle of Kursk, July 1943
Ruins of the Benedictine monastery, during the Battle of Monte Cassino, Italian Campaign, May 1944
American troops approaching Omaha Beach during the invasion of Normandy on D-Day, 6 June 1944
German SS soldiers from the Dirlewanger Brigade, tasked with suppressing the Warsaw Uprising against Nazi occupation, August 1944
General Douglas MacArthur returns to the Philippines during the Battle of Leyte, 20 October 1944
Yalta Conference held in February 1945, with Winston Churchill, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Joseph Stalin
Ruins of the Reichstag in Berlin, 3 June 1945.
Atomic bombing of Nagasaki on 9 August 1945.
Ruins of Warsaw in 1945, after the deliberate destruction of the city by the occupying German forces
Defendants at the Nuremberg trials, where the Allied forces prosecuted prominent members of the political, military, judicial and economic leadership of Nazi Germany for crimes against humanity
Post-war border changes in Central Europe and creation of the Communist Eastern Bloc
David Ben-Gurion proclaiming the Israeli Declaration of Independence at the Independence Hall, 14 May 1948
World War II deaths
Bodies of Chinese civilians killed by the Imperial Japanese Army during the Nanking Massacre in December 1937
Schutzstaffel (SS) female camp guards removing prisoners' bodies from lorries and carrying them to a mass grave, inside the German Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, 1945
Prisoner identity photograph taken by the German SS of a Polish Catholic girl who died in Auschwitz. Approximately 230,000 children were held prisoner and used in forced labour and Nazi medical experiments.
Polish civilians wearing blindfolds photographed just before their execution by German soldiers in Palmiry forest, 1940
Soviet partisans hanged by the German army. The Russian Academy of Sciences reported in 1995 civilian victims in the Soviet Union at German hands totalled 13.7 million dead, twenty percent of the 68 million persons in the occupied Soviet Union.
B-29 Superfortress strategic bombers on the Boeing assembly line in Wichita, Kansas, 1944
A V-2 rocket launched from a fixed site in Peenemünde, 21 June 1943
Nuclear Gadget being raised to the top of the detonation "shot tower", at Alamogordo Bombing Range; Trinity nuclear test, New Mexico, July 1945

It involved the vast majority of the world's countries—including all of the great powers—forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis powers.

From late 1939 to early 1941, in a series of campaigns and treaties, Germany conquered or controlled much of continental Europe, and formed the Axis alliance with Italy and Japan (along with other countries later on).

Allies of World War II

The Allied leaders of the European theatre (left to right): Joseph Stalin, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill meeting at the Tehran Conference in 1943
The Allied leaders of the Asian and Pacific Theater: Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Winston Churchill meeting at the Cairo Conference in 1943
Wartime poster for the United Nations, created in 1941 by the U.S. Office of War Information
Wartime poster for the United Nations, created in 1943 by the U.S. Office of War Information
British Supermarine Spitfire fighter aircraft (bottom) flying past a German Heinkel He 111 bomber aircraft (top) during the Battle of Britain in 1940
British Crusader tanks during the North African Campaign
British aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal under attack from Italian aircraft during the Battle of Cape Spartivento (27 Nov 1940)
British soldiers of the King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry in Elst, Netherlands on 2 March 1945
Free French forces at the Battle of Bir Hakeim, 1942
FAFL Free French GC II/5 "LaFayette" receiving ex-USAAF Curtiss P-40 fighters at Casablanca, French Morocco
The French fleet scuttled itself rather than fall into the hands of the Axis after their invasion of Vichy France on 11 November 1942.
The fall of Damascus to the Allies, late June 1941. A car carrying Free French commanders General Georges Catroux and General Paul Louis Le Gentilhomme enters the city, escorted by French Circassian cavalry (Gardes Tcherkess).
Soviet soldiers and T-34 tanks advancing near Bryansk in 1942
Soviet soldiers fighting in the ruins of Stalingrad during the Battle of Stalingrad
Soviet Il-2 ground attack aircraft attacking German ground forces during the Battle of Kursk, 1943
American Douglas SBD Dauntless dive-bomber aircraft attacking the Japanese cruiser Mikuma during the Battle of Midway in June 1942
U.S. Marines during the Guadalcanal Campaign in November 1942
American Consolidated B-24 Liberator bomber aircraft during the bombing of oil refineries in Ploiești, Romania on 1 August 1943 during Operation Tidal Wave
U.S. soldiers departing landing craft during the Normandy landings on 6 June 1944 known as D-Day
Philippine Scouts at Fort William McKinley firing a 37 mm anti-tank gun in training
Soldiers of the National Revolutionary Army associated with Nationalist China, during the Second Sino-Japanese War
Soldiers of the First Workers' and Peasants' Army associated with Communist China, during the Sino-Japanese War
Victorious Chinese Communist soldiers holding the flag of the Republic of China during the Hundred Regiments Offensive
Members of the Belgian Resistance with a Canadian soldier in Bruges, September 1944 during the Battle of the Scheldt
Norwegian soldiers on the Narvik front, May 1940
Pilots of the No. 303 "Kościuszko" Polish Fighter Squadron during the Battle of Britain
Polish partisan of the Home Army (AK), "Jędrusie" unit, holding a Browning wz.1928 light machine gun
Partisans and Chetniks escorting captured Germans through Užice, autumn 1941
Partisan leader Marshal Josip Broz Tito with Winston Churchill in 1944
Chetniks leader General Mihailovic with members of the U.S. military mission, Operation Halyard, 1944
Romanian soldiers in Transylvania, September–October 1944
The dead bodies of Benito Mussolini, his mistress Clara Petacci, and several Fascist leaders, hanging for public display after they were executed by Italian partisans in 1945
The first version of the flag of the United Nations, introduced in April 1945
A British poster from 1941, promoting the greater alliance against Germany
U.S. government poster showing a friendly Soviet soldier, 1942

The Allies were an international military coalition formed during the Second World War (1939–1945) to oppose the Axis powers, led by Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, and Fascist Italy.

The Pacific War Council as photographed on 12 October 1942. Pictured are representatives from the United States (seated), Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, China, the Netherlands, and the Philippine Commonwealth

Pacific War

The theater of World War II that was fought in Asia, the Pacific Ocean, the Indian Ocean, and Oceania.

The theater of World War II that was fought in Asia, the Pacific Ocean, the Indian Ocean, and Oceania.

The Pacific War Council as photographed on 12 October 1942. Pictured are representatives from the United States (seated), Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, China, the Netherlands, and the Philippine Commonwealth
Political map of the Asia-Pacific region, 1939
Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, Allied Commander-in-Chief in the China theater from 1942 to 1945
A mass grave of Chinese prisoners killed by the Imperial Japanese Army in the 1937 Nanjing Massacre
Chinese casualties of a mass panic during a June 1941 Japanese aerial bombing of Chongqing
USS Arizona (BB-39) burned for two days after being hit by a Japanese bomb in the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Japanese aerial photo of battleship HMS Prince of Wales (top) and battlecruiser HMS Repulse under attack.
British forces surrender Singapore to the Japanese, February 1942
The Bombing of Darwin, Australia, 19 February 1942
Surrender of US forces at Corregidor, Philippines, May 1942
Dutch and Australian PoWs at Tarsau, in Thailand in 1943. 22,000 Australians were captured by the Japanese; 8,000 died as prisoners of war.
US General Douglas MacArthur, Commander of Allied forces in the South-West Pacific Area, with Australian Prime Minister John Curtin
Japanese advance until mid-1942
A B-25 bomber takes off from USS Hornet (CV-8) as part of the Doolittle Raid.
The aircraft carrier USS Lexington (CV-2) explodes on 8 May 1942, several hours after being damaged by a Japanese carrier air attack.
under attack by B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers
US Marines rest in the field during the Guadalcanal campaign in November 1942.
Chinese troops during the Battle of Changde in November 1943
Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek and General Joseph Stilwell, Allied Commander-in-Chief in the China theatre from 1942 to 1945
Allied attack routes against the Empire of Japan
American forces landing at Rendova Island, June, 1943
The Allied leaders of the Asian and Pacific Theaters: Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Winston Churchill meeting at the Cairo Conference in 1943
The torpedoed, as seen through the periscope of an American submarine, USS Nautilus (SS-168), in June 1942
The, the largest non-nuclear submarines ever constructed
Chinese forces on M3A3 Stuart tanks on the Ledo Road
British Indian troops during the Battle of Imphal
Marines fire captured mountain gun during the attack on Garapan, Saipan, 21 June 1944.
US Marines during mopping up operations on Peleliu, September 1944
The Japanese aircraft carrier Zuikaku and two destroyers under attack in the Battle of the Philippine Sea
The four engagements in the Battle of Leyte Gulf
General Douglas MacArthur wading ashore at Leyte
US troops approaching Japanese positions near Baguio, Luzon, 23 March 1945
Royal Marines landing at Ramree
British soldiers patrolling the ruins of a Burmese town during the advance on Mandalay, January 1945
Iwo Jima location map
Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima, an iconic photograph taken by Joe Rosenthal on February 23, 1945, depicts six United States Marines raising a US flag atop Mount Suribachi.
USS Bunker Hill (CV-17) burns after being hit by two kamikazes. At Okinawa, the kamikazes caused 4,900 American deaths.
US Marines pass a dead Japanese soldier in a destroyed village on Okinawa, April 1945
US LVTs land Australian soldiers at Balikpapan on 7 July 1945.
American B-29 Superfortresses drop incendiary bombs over the port city of Kobe, June 1945
The mushroom cloud from the nuclear explosion over Nagasaki rising 60,000 feet (18 km) into the air on the morning of 9 August 1945
Pacific Fleet marines of the Soviet Navy hoist the Soviet naval ensign in Port Arthur, on 1 October 1945.
Douglas MacArthur signs the formal Japanese Instrument of Surrender on USS Missouri (BB-63), 2 September 1945.
American corpses sprawled on the beach of Tarawa, November 1943
Indian prisoners of war shot and bayoneted by Japanese soldiers
IJA soldiers after a suicide charge on US Marine positions in Guadalcanal
Charred remains of civilians killed in the 10 March firebombing of Tokyo, codenamed Operation Meetinghouse, which killed an estimated 100,000 people, March 1945
Australian POW Sergeant Leonard G. Siffleet of M Special Unit being beheaded by a Japanese officer, Yasuno Chikao, on 24 October 1943. AWM photo.
A Filipino woman and child killed by Japanese forces in the Manila massacre
A young Chinese girl from a Japanese 'comfort battalion' being interviewed by a British officer. Rangoon, Burma, 1945
American stretcher party carrying a wounded soldier through a devastated Manila street, 23 February 1945

The Second Sino-Japanese War between the Empire of Japan and the Republic of China had been in progress since 7 July 1937, with hostilities dating back as far as 19 September 1931 with the Japanese invasion of Manchuria.

The Pacific War saw the Allies pitted against Japan, the latter aided by Thailand and to a lesser extent by the Axis allies, Germany and Italy.

Soviet Union

Country that spanned much of Eurasia from 1922 to 1991.

Country that spanned much of Eurasia from 1922 to 1991.

The Soviet Union after World War II
Lenin, Trotsky and Kamenev celebrating the second anniversary of the October Revolution
The Soviet Union after World War II
The Russian famine of 1921–22 killed an estimated 5 million people.
Construction of the bridge through the Kolyma (part of the Road of Bones from Magadan to Jakutsk) by the workers of Dalstroy.
Five Marshals of the Soviet Union in 1935. Only two of them – Budyonny and Voroshilov – survived Great Purge. Blyukher, Yegorov and Tukhachevsky were executed.
The Battle of Stalingrad, considered by many historians as a decisive turning point of World War II.
From left to right, the Soviet General Secretary Joseph Stalin, US President Franklin D. Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill confer in Tehran, 1943.
Map showing greatest territorial extent of the Soviet Union and the states that it dominated politically, economically and militarily in 1960, after the Cuban Revolution of 1959 but before the official Sino-Soviet split of 1961 (total area: c. 35,000,000 km2)
Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev (left) with US President John F. Kennedy in Vienna, 3 June 1961.
Nikolai Podgorny visiting Tampere, Finland on 16 October 1969
Soviet general secretary Leonid Brezhnev and US President Jimmy Carter sign the SALT II arms limitation treaty in Vienna on 18 June 1979
Mikhail Gorbachev in one-to-one discussions with US President Ronald Reagan
The Pan-European Picnic took place in August 1989 on the Hungarian-Austrian border.
T-80 tank on Red Square during the August Coup
Changes in national boundaries after the end of the Cold War
Internally displaced Azerbaijanis from Nagorno-Karabakh, 1993
Country emblems of the Soviet Republics before and after the dissolution of the Soviet Union (note that the Transcaucasian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (fifth in the second row) no longer exists as a political entity of any kind and the emblem is unofficial)
Sukarno and Voroshilov in a state meeting on 1958.
1960s Cuba-Soviet friendship poster with Fidel Castro and Nikita Khrushchev
Soviet stamp 1974 for friendship between USSR and India as both nations shared strong ties, although India was a prominent member of Non-Aligned Movement
Gerald Ford, Andrei Gromyko, Leonid Brezhnev and Henry Kissinger speaking informally at the Vladivostok Summit in 1974
Mikhail Gorbachev and George H. W. Bush signing bilateral documents during Gorbachev's official visit to the United States in 1990
1987 Soviet stamp
Military parade on the Red Square in Moscow, 7 November 1964
The Grand Kremlin Palace, the seat of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union, 1982
Nationalist anti-government riots in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, 1990
A medium-range SS-20 non-ICBM ballistic missile, the deployment of which in the late 1970s launched a new arms race in Europe in which NATO deployed Pershing II missiles in West Germany, among other things
From left to right: Yuri Gagarin, Pavel Popovich, Valentina Tereshkova and Nikita Khrushchev at the Lenin's Mausoleum in 1963
Soyuz rocket at the Baikonur Cosmodrome
The DneproGES, one of many hydroelectric power stations in the Soviet Union
Picking cotton in Armenia in the 1930s
Workers of the Salihorsk potash plant, Belarus, 1968
Volzhsky Avtomobilny Zavod (VAZ) in 1969
Soviet stamp depicting the 30th anniversary of the International Atomic Energy Agency, published in 1987, a year following the Chernobyl nuclear disaster
Soviet stamp showing the orbit of Sputnik 1
Aeroflot's flag during the Soviet era
Population of the Soviet Union (red) and the post-Soviet states (blue) from 1961 to 2009 as well as projection (dotted blue) from 2010 to 2100
Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman in space, visiting the Lviv confectionery, Ukrainian SSR, 1967
Young Pioneers at a Young Pioneer camp in Kazakh SSR
People in Samarkand, Uzbek SSR, 1981
Svaneti man in Mestia, Georgian SSR, 1929
An early Soviet-era poster discouraging unsafe abortion practices
Cover of Bezbozhnik in 1929, magazine of the Society of the Godless. The first five-year plan of the Soviet Union is shown crushing the gods of the Abrahamic religions.
The Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow during its demolition in 1931
A paranja burning ceremony in the Uzbek SSR as part of Soviet Hujum policies
World War II military deaths in Europe by theater and by year. Nazi Germany suffered 80% of its military deaths in the Eastern Front.
2001 stamp of Moldova shows Yuri Gagarin, the first human in space
People in Donetsk celebrate the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany, 9 May 2018
Soviet singer-songwriter, poet and actor Vladimir Vysotsky in 1979
Valeri Kharlamov represented the Soviet Union at 11 Ice Hockey World Championships, winning eight gold medals, two silvers and one bronze
One of the many impacts of the approach to the environment in the USSR is the Aral Sea (see status in 1989 and 2014)
Landscape near Karabash, Chelyabinsk Oblast, an area that was previously covered with forests until acid rainfall from a nearby copper smelter killed all vegetation
Ethnographic map of the Soviet Union, 1941
Ethnographic map of the Soviet Union, 1970

Despite initial German successes, the Soviets gained the upper hand over Axis forces at the Battle of Stalingrad and eventually captured Berlin, declaring victory over Germany on 9 May 1945.

In the east, the Soviet military won several decisive victories during border clashes with the Empire of Japan in 1938 and 1939.

Map of the Finnish Democratic Republic (1939–40), a short-lived puppet state of the Soviet Union. Green indicates the area that the Soviet Union planned to cede to the Finnish Democratic Republic, and red the areas ceded by Democratic Finland to the Soviet Union.

Puppet state

State that is de jure independent but de facto completely dependent upon an outside power and subject to its orders.

State that is de jure independent but de facto completely dependent upon an outside power and subject to its orders.

Map of the Finnish Democratic Republic (1939–40), a short-lived puppet state of the Soviet Union. Green indicates the area that the Soviet Union planned to cede to the Finnish Democratic Republic, and red the areas ceded by Democratic Finland to the Soviet Union.
First French Empire and French satellite states in 1812
Map of the British Indian Empire. The princely states are in yellow.
Location of Manchukuo (red) within Imperial Japan's sphere of influence
Wang Jingwei receiving German diplomats while head of state in 1941
German-occupied Europe at the height of the Axis conquests in 1942
Abkhazian President Alexander Ankvab with Transnistrian President Yevgeny Shevchuk in 2013. Both Abkhazia and Transnistria have been described as puppet states of Russia.
Northern Cyprus in 2009

During Japan's imperial period, and particularly during the Pacific War (parts of which are considered the Pacific theatre of World War II), the Imperial Japanese regime established a number of dependent states.

Italian Social Republic (1943–1945, known also as the Republic of Salò) – General Pietro Badoglio and King Victor Emmanuel III withdrew Italy from the Axis Powers and moved the government to southern Italy, already conquered by the Allies. In response, the Germans occupied northern Italy and founded the Italian Social Republic (Repubblica Sociale Italiana or RSI) with Italian dictator Benito Mussolini as its "Head of State" and "Minister of Foreign Affairs". While the RSI government had some trappings of an independent state, it was completely dependent both economically and politically on Germany.

Japanese Foreign Minister Matsuoka signing the pact

Soviet–Japanese Neutrality Pact

Japanese Foreign Minister Matsuoka signing the pact
Soviet-Japanese Neutrality Pact, April 13, 1941

The Soviet–Japanese Neutrality Pact (日ソ中立条約), also known as the Japanese–Soviet Non-aggression Pact (日ソ不可侵条約), was a non-aggression pact between the Soviet Union and the Empire of Japan signed on April 13, 1941, two years after the conclusion of the Soviet-Japanese Border War.

After the Fall of France and then the expansion of the Axis Powers, the Soviet Union wished to mend its diplomatic relations in the Far East to safeguard its eastern border and to concentrate on the European Theatre of World War II.

Japanese forces land on Java.

Dutch East Indies campaign

Japanese forces land on Java.
The Japanese lines of advance in the Dutch East Indies, Sarawak and North Borneo (British), and Portuguese Timor

The Dutch East Indies campaign of 1941–1942 was the conquest of the Dutch East Indies (present-day Indonesia) by forces from the Empire of Japan in the early days of the Pacific campaign of World War II.

In late November, the Netherlands government in the East Indies under the Dutch government-in-exile (already at war with Imperial Japan's Axis power ally Germany in Europe) began preparing for war against Japan itself: ships of the Royal Netherlands Navy were sent to sea and the KNIL Air Force was mobilised.

Wang Jingwei regime

The Wang Jingwei regime (dark red) and Mengjiang (light red) within the Empire of Japan (pink) at its furthest extent
Wang Jingwei was head of the Reorganized National Government.
The Wang Jingwei regime (dark red) and Mengjiang (light red) within the Empire of Japan (pink) at its furthest extent
Map of the Republic of China that was controlled by the reorganized national government in 1939 (dark green) Mengjiang was incorporated in 1940 (light green)
Wall bearing a government slogan that proclaims: "Support Mr. Wang Jingwei!"
Water Resource Committee of Wang Jingwei's puppet government
Advertisement of congratulation towards the establishment of the new Nationalist government on Taiwan Nichi Nichi Shimpō
Wang Jingwei at a military parade
Area of control of the invading Japanese forces
Wang Jingwei, Japanese ambassador Abe Nobuyuki, and Manchukuo ambassador Zang Shiyi sign the joint declaration, 30 November 1940
Wang Jingwei with ambassador Heinrich Georg Stahmer at the German embassy in 1941
Unused example of a Wang Jingwei regime passport, circa 1941
President Wang Jingwei at a military parade on the occasion of the third anniversary of the establishment of the government
Type 94 tankettes on parade (note the driver's Stahlhelm and the KMT blue and white sun emblem on the tanks)

The Wang Jingwei regime is the common name of the Reorganized National Government of the Republic of China, the government of the puppet state of the Empire of Japan in eastern China called simply the Republic of China.

As a slight conciliation, Wang was successful in persuading the Japanese to secure official recognition for the Nanjing Government from the other Axis Powers.

Signing of the Tripartite Pact. On the left-hand side of the picture, seated from left to right, are Saburō Kurusu (representing Japan), Galeazzo Ciano (Italy) and Adolf Hitler (Germany).

Tripartite Pact

Signing of the Tripartite Pact. On the left-hand side of the picture, seated from left to right, are Saburō Kurusu (representing Japan), Galeazzo Ciano (Italy) and Adolf Hitler (Germany).
The Japanese embassy in Berlin clad in the flags of the three signatories of the Tripartite Pact in September 1940
Official protocol of Bulgaria's accession into the Tripartite Pact
Luang Wichitwathakan (centre, standing) and German diplomats, 1943
China's declaration of war (9 December 1941) was made on the grounds that the Tripartite Pact banded the allies together "into a block of aggressor states working closely together to carry out their common program of world conquest and domination".

The Tripartite Pact, also known as the Berlin Pact, was an agreement between Germany, Italy, and Japan signed in Berlin on 27 September 1940 by, respectively, Joachim von Ribbentrop, Galeazzo Ciano and Saburō Kurusu.

The Tripartite Pact was, together with the Anti-Comintern Pact and the Pact of Steel, one of a number of agreements between Germany, Japan, Italy, and other countries of the Axis Powers governing their relationship.

A 1912 newspaper cartoon highlighting the United States' influence in Latin America following the Monroe Doctrine.

Sphere of influence

Spatial region or concept division over which a state or organization has a level of cultural, economic, military, or political exclusivity.

Spatial region or concept division over which a state or organization has a level of cultural, economic, military, or political exclusivity.

A 1912 newspaper cartoon highlighting the United States' influence in Latin America following the Monroe Doctrine.
Map of Africa in 1897 shows European "sphere[s] of influence".
Delimitation of British and Russian influence in Iran
Spheres of influence in Chinese empire in early 20th century
German and Japanese direct spheres of influence at their greatest extents in fall 1942.
Greatest extent of Soviet influence, after the Cuban Revolution but before the Sino-Soviet Split
An 1878 British cartoon about The Great Game between the United Kingdom and Russia over influence in Central Asia

In China, during the late 19th and early 20th centuries (known in China as the "century of humiliation"), Britain, France, Germany, Russia, and Japan held special powers over large swaths of Chinese territory based on securing "nonalienation commitments" for their "spheres of interest"; only the United States was unable to participate due to their involvement in the Spanish–American War.

The Soviet invasion of Bukovina on 28 June 1940 violated the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, as it went beyond the Soviet sphere of influence as agreed with the Axis.