December 11, 1941: Germany and Italy Declare War on the U.S.
On this day in 1941, Nazi Germany’s Adolf Hitler and Fascist Italy’s Benito Mussolini declared war on the United States in support of their ally, Empire of Japan. The U.S. government responded by passing resolutions of war against the two Axis powers, thereby entering World War II.
The declarations came a few days after the Japanese attack and bombing of the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor near Honolulu, Hawaii.
Follow Ken Burns’s World War II timeline to discover important events and figures during this global conflict.
Photo: President Roosevelt signing the declaration of war against Germany, Dec. 11, 1941 (Library of Congress).