1: The Republic of China and the Empire of Japan are involved in the early stages of the third year of armed conflict between them during the Second Sino-Japanese War. The war is in what will be known as the "Second Period." The "Second Period" starts in October 1938 and ends in December 1941. This conflict would eventually be swept up into WWII when Japan joins the Axis and China the Allies
4: In the first British offensive action of the War, the Royal Air Force launch a raid on the German fleet in the Heligoland Bight. They target the German pocket-battleship Admiral Scheer anchored off Wilhelmshaven at the western end of the Kiel Canal. Several aircraft are lost in the attack and, although the German vessel is hit three times, all of the bombs fail to explode.
4: Japan announces its neutrality in the European situation. The United States makes a similar declaration the next day.
5: South African Prime Minister Barry Hertzog fails to gain support for a declaration of South African neutrality and is deposed by a party caucus for Deputy Prime Minister Jan Smuts.
6: South Africa, now under Prime Minister Jan Smuts, declares war on Germany.
24: Soviet air force violates Estonian airspace. The Estonians negotiate with Molotov in Moscow. Molotov warns the Estonians that if the Soviet Union doesn’t get military bases in Estonia, it will be forced to use "more radical actions".
25: German home front measures begin with food rationing.
25: Soviet air activity in Estonia. Soviet troops along the Estonian border include 600 tanks and 600 aircraft and 160 000 men.
26: Following a massive artillery bombardment, the Germans launch a major infantry assault on the centre of Warsaw.
26: Russian bombers seen in the Tallinn sky.
27: In the first offensive operations by the German Army in Western Europe, guns on the Siegfried Line open up on villages behind French Maginot line.
28: The remaining Polish army and militia in the centre of Warsaw capitulate to the Germans.
28: Soviet troops mass by the Latvian border. Latvian air space violated.
28: Estonia signs a 10-year Mutual Assistance Pact with the Soviet Union, which allows the Soviets to have 30 000-men military bases in Estonia. As a gift in return Stalin promises to respect Estonian independence.
2: Latvian representatives negotiate with Stalin and Molotov. Soviets threaten an occupation by force if they do not get military bases in Latvia.
2: Declaration of Panama is approved by American Republics. Belligerent activities should not take place within waters adjacent to the American continent. A neutrality zone of some 300 miles in breadth is to be patrolled by the U.S. navy.
3: British forces move to the Belgian border, anticipating a German invasion of the West.
3: Lithuanians meet Stalin and Molotov in Moscow. Stalin offers Lithuania the city of Vilnius (in Poland) in return for allowing Soviet military bases in Lithuania. The Lithuanians are reluctant.
5: Latvia signs a 10-year Mutual Assistance Pact with the Soviet Union, which allows the Soviets to have 25 000 men in military bases in Latvia. Stalin promises to respect Latvian independence.
6: Chinese army reportedly defeats the Japanese at the battle of Changsha.
6: Polish resistance in the Polish September Campaign comes to an end. Hitler speaks before the Reichstag, declaring a desire for a conference with Britain and France to restore peace.
7: Lithuanians again meet the Soviets in Moscow. The Soviets demand military bases.
10: The last of Poland's military surrenders to the Germans.
10: The leaders of the German navy suggest to Hitler the need to occupy Norway.
10: British Prime Minister Chamberlain declines Hitler's offer of peace.
10: Lithuania signs a 15-year Mutual Assistance Pact with the Soviet Union, which allows the Soviets to have 20 000 men in military bases in Lithuania. In a secret protocol, Vilnius is made Lithuanian territory.
11: An estimated 158,000 British troops are now in France.
12: Adolf Eichmann begins deporting Jews from Austria and Czechoslovakia into Poland.
12: French Premier Daladier declines Hitler's offer of peace.
12: Finland's representatives meet Stalin and Molotov in Moscow. Soviet Union demands Finland gives up a military base near Helsinki and exchange some Soviet and Finnish territories to protect Leningrad against Great-Britain or the eventual future threat of Germany.
1: Russia continues its war against Finland; Helsinki is bombed. In the first two weeks of the month, the Finns retreat to the Mannerheim line, an outmoded defensive line just inside the southern border with Russia.
2: British conscription is increased to cover men from 19 to 41.
5: The Russian invaders start heavy attacks on the Mannerheim line.
7: Italy again declares its neutrality. Norway, Sweden, and Denmark also proclaim their neutrality in the Russo-Finnish quarrel.
11: Russians meet with several tactical defeats by the Finnish army.