Rio de Janeiro Conference, a meeting of the foreign ministers of the republics of the Western Hemisphere held at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in January, 1942. The conference, held a month after the United States entered World War II, recommended that those Latin American countries that had not already done so sever diplomatic and commercial relations with Germany, Italy, and Japan. All complied at once except Chile and Argentina. Chile did not break relations until January, 1943; Argentina waited until January, 1944. The conference also called for suppression of pro-Axis activity in the Americas, arranged for economic cooperation within the hemisphere, and established an Inter-American defense board.
Japan's bombing of Pearl Harbor was the major event that caused the United States to enter World War II. On December 7, 1941, Japan bombed the harbor, which damaged 300 planes, eight battleships, and killed over 2,000 people. Learn more about the attack.
This World War II timeline highlights important dates during January 1931 to August 1939. This time period saw Japan and Italy break away from the League of Nations and the rise of the Nazi Party in Germany. Follow the events of World War II.