Berlin, German Empire, ca. 1941
Werner von Axster-Heudtlaß
Deutsches Historisches Museum, Berlin, Germany
Germany’s ambitions for territorial expansion and the domination of Europe plunged the continent into war on 1 September 1939. A week earlier, Hitler and Stalin had agreed on a non-aggression treaty, including a secret provision that divided Central and Eastern Europe into Nazi and Soviet spheres of interest.