During World War II, there were two groups of countries fighting. The Axis Powers describes the group of nations that fought against their opposition, a group known as the Allies.
The history of this alliance began in 1936 with the signing of a friendship treaty between Germany and Italy. After the signing of the treaty, the term “Axis” was coined by Benito Mussolini, the dictator of Italy. Japan and Germany in the same year signed a treaty that was anti-Communism.
Germany and Italy further strengthened their alliance with the signing of the Pact of Steel in 1939. The following year, Japan also signed the treaty, which then became known as the Tripartite Pact. With the signing of this treaty, the three countries of Germany, Italy, and Japan became known as the Axis Powers.
During World War II, these countries ruled much of Africa, Europe, and Southeast Asia. Each member of the Axis Powers was ruled by a dictator. In Germany, Adolph Hitler was the Chancellor and later became Fuhrer. In Italy, Mussolini was the dictator. In Japan, Emperor Hirohito ruled over the nation – a role he held until 1989.
In addition to the Axis Powers, there were also other countries that were members of the alliance. Those nations include:
Hungary was the only nation that signed the Tripartite Pact with the Axis Powers. Finland didn’t sign the treaty but fought against Russia. Bulgaria and Romania started on the side of the Axis Powers but ended up siding with the Allies by the end of the war.
Bulgaria, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, and Romania were all members of the Axis Powers during World War II.