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World War II was fought between the Allies and the Axis powers between 1939 and 1945. The Empire of Japan forced the Americans and British out of the Philippines and Singapore, but were slowly pushed back, island by island, towards Japan in the Second World War. George H.W. Bush served as Ronald Reagan's vice-president for eight years and then ran twice on his own, successfully in 1988 but losing in 1992 to Bill Clinton.