World War 2 ended on August 15, 1945 when Japan surrendered. The war ended in Europe on May 8, 1945 when Hitler committed suicide and Winston Churchill announced victory.
World War 2 began in September 1939 when Hitler invaded Poland. The British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain told Adolf Hitler to remove his troops from Poland or Britain, and France would declare war on the Germans. Hitler refused, and on September 2, 1939 war was officially declared on the Germans. The following day, the first British ship, the Athenia, was sunk by Germany. Over 45 million civilians died in World War 2, and over 16 million members of the military.