In Western Europe, British troops deployed to the Continent, but in a phase nicknamed the Phoney War by the British and "Sitzkrieg" (sitting war) by the Germans, neither side launched major operations against the other until April 1940. The Soviet Union and Germany entered a trade pact in February of 1940, pursuant to which the Soviets received German military and industrial equipment in exchange for supplying raw materials to Germany to help circumvent a British blockade.
In April 1940, Germany invaded Denmark and Norway to secure shipments of iron ore from Sweden, which the Allies would try to disrupt. Denmark immediately capitulated, and despite Allied support, Norway was conquered within two months. British discontent over the Norwegian campaign led to the replacement of Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain by Winston Churchill on 10 May 1940.