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World War II (1939–1945)

History SparkNotes

The Strengthening Alliance

Total War in the Pacific

Southeast Asia

Events
January 12, 1943 Roosevelt and Churchill begin meeting at Casablanca
November 28 Churchill, Roosevelt, and Stalin begin meeting at Tehran
Key People
Winston Churchill -  British prime minister; insisted on unconditional surrender for Germany and delayed invasion of western Europe
Franklin D. Roosevelt -  32nd U.S. president; agreed to continued commitment of United States to defeat Germany in Europe
Joseph Stalin -  Soviet premier; met with Churchill and Roosevelt at Tehran; pushed for early invasion of western Europe to take German pressure off the USSR

The Casablanca Conference

On January 1223, 1943, U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt and British prime minister Winston Churchill met at Casablanca in French North Africa (present-day Morocco) and decided that they would accept nothing but an unconditional surrender from Germany in order to end the war. They also made a number of important strategic decisions. They discussed troop distribution in the Pacific, outlined major lines of attack in the far east, and agreed upon the invasion of Sicily. Moreover, they decided to delay plans for an Allied invasion of Europe via the English Channel until the summer of 1944, due to ongoing difficulties with the preparations. Finally, in order to reduce pressure on the Soviet Union, they agreed to intensify bombing operations against Germany. Following the conference, the two leaders sent a telegram to Soviet premier Joseph Stalin, informing him of their decisions and reaffirming their commitment to work together with the USSR in defeating Germany.

The Tehran Conference

From November 28 to December 1, 1943, Churchill, Roosevelt, and Stalin all met together for the first time, at a conference in Tehran, Iran. The three leaders discussed detailed plans for the Allied invasion of Europe, which Churchill and Roosevelt had decided to postpone at the Casablanca Conference earlier that year. The invasion would be code-named Operation Overlord. Stalin was frustrated by the delay, but Churchill and Roosevelt insisted that the extra time was needed to sufficiently degrade Germany’s military strength. At the end of the meeting, Stalin committed the USSR to enter the war against Japan once Germany was defeated.

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