Chart: World War II Casualties as a Percentage of Each Country’s Population

World War I was supposed to the “War to End all Wars“. However many years later World War II followed. The death toll in WW II was enormous with millions of lives lost on the allies side and the enemies side. After WW II new smaller wars led to more deaths.

I came across a fascinating chart today that showed the death toll for each country in WWII. Unlike so many other charts on the web, this chart puts the toll in perspective since it measures the casualties as percentage of each country’s then total population. Based on this logic, the countries with  the largest death toll were Poland, Soviet Union and Yugoslavia.

Click to enlarge

Caption: Baumermann 3509 Tote im Zweiten Weltkrieg 2. Weltkrieg WK2 Bevölkerung Titel Datum: 24. August 2009 World War II Casualties Death toll as a percentage of each country's 1939 population*

Caption: Baumermann 3509 Tote im Zweiten Weltkrieg 2. Weltkrieg WK2 Bevölkerung Titel
Datum: 24. August 2009
World War II Casualties
Death toll as a percentage of each country’s 1939 population*

Source: The Road to World War II: How Appeasement Failed to Stop Hitler,  Der Spiegel

At 0.30%, the U.S. had the lowest death toll percentage as a percentage of total population at that time. This does not mean American sacrifices were small compared to other countries. In fact, 450,000 Americans lost their lives and the US was the main driving force among the western allies. In addition, millions of American soldiers were injured and suffered as well.  The sheer US military power and technological superiority helped European countries and the world put an end  to the senseless  war.


1.World War 2 Deaths to a Country Population Percentage:

Click to enlarge

Source: Unknown

2.Fraction of a Country’s Population to deaths in WW2:

Source: Wikipedia

3.World War II Deaths by  Country:

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4.World War II Deaths by Country in Pie Chart Format:

5.World War II Deaths by Country in Bar Chart:

Source: Wikimedia

6.Human Losses of World War Two by  Country:

Source: Wikipedia

7.World War II Military Deaths:


8.World War 2 Deaths by Country in Map:

Source: Pinterest

9.World War 2 Deaths by Percentage of Pre-war Population of each Country:

Source: Pinterest

10.World War 2 Deaths by Country in World Map:

Source: TargetMap

11. World War II Fatalities by Country:

Source: Historical Non-Fiction

12. World War 2 Deaths by Country and Percentage of Population:

Click to enlarge

Source: The Causes and Consequences of World War II, WSWS

An excerpt from the above article:

The human cost of World War II exceeded by far that of the First World War. Military deaths totaled twenty-two to twenty-five million, including the deaths of five million prisoners of war. Let us examine the death tolls suffered by a number of countries most directly involved in the maelstrom. Poland lost more than 16 percent of its population. The Soviet Union lost approximately  14 percent. Eleven percent of the population of Greece was killed. Other countries that lost at least 10 percent of their populations were Lithuania and Latvia. Other countries that lost at least 3 percent of their people were Estonia, Hungary, the Netherlands, Romania, Singapore and Yugoslavia.

13.World War II military deaths in Europe by theater and by year

Source: Wikipedia

14. Military Losses in American Wars:


15.World War I vs. World War II –  Civilian and Military Deaths Comparison:

Source: Google Images

16.Civilian and Military Deaths in Allied Countries:

Source: Foot Steps of War

17.Estimated number of military and civilian fatalities due to the Second World War per country or region between 1939 and 1945:

Source: Statista

For the full chart click on the link above.

18. The Number of Deaths in the Second World War by Nation:

Source: Statistics and Data


  1. Jude
    Thanks for comment. I did not know that detail.
    I posted the above chart from Der Speigel. Unfortunately they did not include New Zealand’s contribution when using the data. Sorry about that.


  2. Funfact- new Zealand been the furthest from war zones in w.w.1 and 2 had too see it through too bitter end. They did not fly or ship home like germans

  3. where’s the “most important” part of the chart? Jews? matter how many people died anywhere they’re the ones that matter the most. from what I’m hearing

  4. Well the chart shows the casualties as percentage of population for each country. It does not go specific like how many were jews, gypsies, etc. You may have heard what you are saying above, but in the grand scheme of things all people matter and not just the “most important” ones whoever they may be.

  5. Thank you for this information. From this statistics I start to appreciate why Russia commemorates the victory of winning the war. The shear number of their casualties – both military and civilian is horrific. I grew up believing the propaganda that the US won the war. It has only been within the past few years that I came to realise the untold stories. I find it strange that although the US joined toward the end of the war, their death toll at 405K is more than GB at 386K? Anyway, the horror of war must not be forgotten – although unfortunately the warring has not stopped. People, countries /leaders always find some good “cause” (or excuse) to go to war.

  6. Viti – Glad you like this post. Yes the Russian deaths were very high compared to other countries. I agree war takes a tremendous toll on not only military but also civilians. Hence wars should be avoided at all costs.

  7. @Vee, it’s ignorant, prejudiced Nazi bastards like you that caused WWII and all those tens of millions of unnecessary deaths in the first place.

  8. Philippines was in active war teamed up with the USA against the Japsnamese and was not even mention in that chart and there were millions of Philippino citizen have been murdered by the Japsnamese which only leaves about 10% alive after the war.

  9. Ok. Sure. The Philippines suffered with millions of victims as well. Unfortunately I posted the chart from the original source. I did not create it. I agree the sacrifice of Filipinos must be taken into account as well. Thanks for the comment.

  10. For Yugoslavia, you should be aware that the 1 700 000 number which occasionally appears was completely made up by the Communists to increase reparations. Overal number of dead was around 700 000 (though various estimates do range from 500 000 to 1 000 000), but another million was added on top of that for political-financial purposes.

  11. living in new Zealand maybe I am sheltered and naive. WW2 and other wars blows my mind, the level of unnecessary destruction of lives and property. One question I keep asking myself is why do we keep doing this? religion? land ownership? do our nabouring country’s annoy us so much we need to end there lives? its all so unnecessary . maybe its a question that cant be truly answered………………..But in saying that i truly appreciate all that that (our nz) fallen ancestor’s have done to keep our country freeand are forever in debt to that and at a drop of a hat I would do the same to protect my families and other nz/ders freedom

  12. World war 1 Indian army was killed and 350000 no were mentioned in world war history, and WW2 2.5 plus Indian were died funny thing is World 1&2 started by USA & Europe
    It’s look like history repeating ,
    But this time they will suffer there self

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