The Antichrist is all about deception. This deception will happen particularly during the very first part of the Tribulation, during the first seal. This period of time (Rev. 6:1-2), is not so much a time of wrath or war, but a period of deception by Satan and the Antichrist.
Here is what John wrote about this period of the first seal.
And I saw when the Lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, “Come.” 2 And I looked, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him; and he went out conquering, and to conquer.
Three things are significant here: the white horse, the bow, and the crown. The white horse no doubt represents peace, and the rider is not Jesus, it is the Antichrist. The bow is a symbol of war; but because there is no mention of arrows, it is just the threat of war. The crown is worn by the Antichrist and is awarded to him by the world. Hence, the message behind this first seal is that this period of time, probably just a few months, is a time when the Antichrist does his best to make peace with Israel and the world through the peace covenant and also by his hearty approval of building the temple.
Secondly, in explanation of the bow, the Antichrist will probably travel around the world giving threats of war to persuade people to submit to him and his government. In this way he will scare them into submission and to his way of peace.
As for the crown, though he is probably seen as a ruthless dictator, people will also see that he is bringing peace to the world, and they will love him for it and will crown him.
Therefore, from the signing of the covenant, in just three to six months’ time (my guess), he will win the world without a drop of blood shed. I think 1 Thessalonians 5:3 is descriptive of this period—when the people of the world are saying, “peace and safety!”
But of course it will be a false peace; for he will have no intention of peace, but to conquer the world for his own evil intention. Indeed, the second seal, when broke, reveals a red horse, which represents a bloody war. This will be the beginning of WWIII, and it will continue for the rest of the Tribulation.