Arthur "Bomber " Harris.....

Fiction, movies, alternate history, humor, and other non-research topics related to WWII.

Moderator: Commissar D, the Evil

Post Reply
Cott Tiger
Associate
Posts: 856
Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2003 8:44 am
Location: England

Post by Cott Tiger » Thu Aug 24, 2006 6:52 am

phylo_roadking wrote:Andre - leningrad and Stalingrad are odd situations; there their own LEADER made the civil population part of the direct war machine by requiring them to remain in situ - or in city. Their continued presence made them combatants, just like kevin's medieval sieges. Again not right, their own leaders should NOT have put them in that place; this could bring up a HUGE discussion, but to be brief - politics is as you know the process by which resources are divided...and the resource of protection and well-being is what a citizen gets back from their govenment in return for their support upwards. Different words and way of doing it in the 21st and 20th century, but its exactly the same process as feudal scutage - a villein or serf can't provide their own protection, so in return for rent/support/service....they get it from above. Obliging these civil populations to stay put was an abrogation by Stalin of what he SHOULD have owed downwards to them - protection, or letting them GO to a place he could protect. I know thats a bit woolly, I'm trying to condense two years of political science into one paragraph LOL

German bombing of Britain didnt cease, but because very mch more targeted, focused on military targets, because the Luftwaffe in the West didnt have the resources to squander on terror bombing. Hence raids on ports and indutrial towns. A lot of the raids too were diversions, the Lftwaffe had for a time a policy of an intruder raid like that covering mining operations in the Tyne, Forth, Clyde, Mersey etc.

The V1 and V2 is a very odd, definitely criminal activity - and made even stranger by some of the nearly-forgotten aspects. German rocketry as a process was driven by the SS, as the Wehrmacht had shown little interest.So from its very start it was taken ot of the "legitimate" national military process and broght into the Nazi Party machinery. They were Nazi weapons, not German weapons, and not enough people answered for that after the war. Two other points - there was a lot of trouble with the Luftwaffe squadrons that later were tasked to air-drop V1s, because they didnt want to be involved in the process. Also, Ive seen a lot of Nazi propaganda film over the years, and when youre looking deep into the whole German nuclear programme and the Maud Committee its hard not to get taken off towards the rocketry element of the Wunderwaffen. There is little or no trumpeting of the fact that it was British civilians that these were indiscriminately targeted at - rather, the whole tone is that the entire South of England was an armed camp for the invasion and after, and it was THIS that the V-weapons were targeted at. A strange ommission, given that the RAF was meanwhile being quite indiscriminate. The only mention is that the terror meted out to the German volk was being revisited upon Britain.

What I think we should do here is acknowledge that there is and was a great difference between what each population was TOLD, against what was really happening - which is the true story...what people believed the war was being fought for, and how? Or the way their leaders were doing it in secret from them?
Hi Phylo,

You make some very valid points, but I believe the basic principle of your argument is flawed.

Germany intentionally and directly targeted civilians from the air right through from the Luftwaffe bombing Guernica to the V2 attacks in 1945. The level of death and destruction (by aerial bombardment) caused to Nazi Germany’s enemy civilian populations was only limited to a lack of resources (i.e. a suitable strategic bomber force)
The argument that the V2 attacks were Nazi weapons and not German ones is a dubious one at best. Not all Germans were Nazis but the vast majority of Nazi’s were German. The V1 and V2 were devised by Germans, built by Germans (the help of slave labour) and operated by Germans with the blessing of Germany’s leaders and of course with the help of the Luftwaffe (V-1 specifically).

The destruction of German cities was not hidden by Bomber Command or the government. The true horror of what the populations on the ground suffered was obviously not forthrightly broadcast, but let us not forget millions of Britons new how it felt to fear for their and their families lives, listening to the bombs drop, while huddled in a shelter. It wasn’t just London either, my great Aunt still has a bomb shelter in her garden in Hull, and there are still car parks and empty sites in Hull where once buildings stood and people lived, before the Luftwaffe visited.

Regards,

Andre
Up The Tigers!

phylo_roadking
Patron
Posts: 8459
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2005 2:41 pm

Post by phylo_roadking » Thu Aug 24, 2006 9:46 am

Andre, as I type this i'm looking out my mum's back window...at her next door neighbours's smallish garage, a brick construction with a flat concrete roof; its when you look at the few feet of newer brick framing the roller door that you realise what it is - an old public shelter? And the odd thing is - this is in a garden of a large house that was formerly a orphanage...on the coast of the Ards Peninsula in Northern Ireland! These are dotted all over N.I., as are the farmer's sheds that are converted army buildings, transit camps etc. Some of the "wonderful" old architecture still survives here in N.I. when time has swept it away in the rest of the U.K.

Regarding Guernica - thats an odd occasion, made odder by visiting the place with friends last year. the Spanish interior is a place where you don't mention the Civil War; whole families are living divided on either side of streets and haven't spoken for nearly 70 years....and are just waiting for another go-round. Guernica and Barcelona etc. are almost forgotten now, i remember a LOT more discussion of Guernica when I was younger. You have to remember it was ORDERED by Franco, the Condor Legion and the German support forces were under closer direct command of the Caudillo that is realised today, on the other side of that strange 40 years when noone talked much about Spain nor went there from the UK, except the resorts. That was a more bitter war, with a far more horrifying aftermath than we ever heard about; civilians dying by the campful didnt stop with the Boer war and start again after 1939....anyway, not to get sidetracked, Franco and his staff were in much closer command of events that history grants them, and seems to spend more time concentrating on the mayhem and chaos of their enemies. The Condor Legion acted there more like a true air force than history and the story of re-arming Germany gives them credit - they were issued orders and carried them out to the limits of their skill and ability. Yes once again it was wrong, but for some reason we always look on it as the fledgling Luftwaffe doing it; yes they flew the planes and dropped the bombs, but it was Franco who pressed the button on his fellow Spaniards, and civilians at that. NO war is more ferocious than CIVIL war :-(

Maybe we should now devolve the Eastern Front air war from the West, same as dividing off the Pacific; in the East it was very mch a war of ideologies, totally unlike the rest of the war in Europe, and BOTH sides saw the other as less than human. If the Red Air Force had had a significant strategic bomber force - my betting is of course it would have been used against civilian populations. After all, Stalin DID have no scruples about requesting Dresden...what bomber force they had was almost purely tactical, and with so many fronts and armies in the offensive after 1943, that tactical force got swallowed up supporting them. I dread to think what this discussion would have been like, WHAT we'd have been discussing, if the Red Air Force had been in tactical bombing range of German cities for a couple of years....

Regarding the V-weapons; thats a very odd propaganda situation. Its very clear the average german knew NOTHING except that they were going to happen at some point. They were promised by Hitler, and delivered by him...not by his armies or airforce, but by him as Fuhrer and leader. The very same propaganda was used as we know between the Nazi ruling echelon and the Wehrmacht itslef, they had no knowledge of the details until they became reality, and were promised the same promises. So the weapons MAY have been built by and used by Germans, but they were viewed by German citizens as coming to them direct from the Fuhrer, not from their own factories and labour force at the end of their own streets or tramlines. There were no V1 funds in church halls or town centres, like the British Spitfire funds of the early war years; by the way, the Germans DID do that self-same things, a sort of "adopt-a-panther" scheme LOL but THESE weapons were outside the normal German provenance, like the W-SS was outside the Heer. In fact, a lot of Wehrmacht officers, inclding the Staffenberg plot officers realised that these made ANY chance of bargaining with the Allies very small, especially when the High Command had no way of stopping production or use except by finally removing Hitler.
"Well, my days of not taking you seriously are certainly coming to a middle." - Malcolm Reynolds

phylo_roadking
Patron
Posts: 8459
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2005 2:41 pm

Post by phylo_roadking » Thu Aug 24, 2006 10:11 am

Andre, the reason I concentrate on the appearance to the public of the bombing issue is - its public opinion as to what is and should be treated as a war crime, especially at a time in histrory when there was as yet no real legal definition of same. Yes, we're of different opinions now that the british wold have been then - but it doesnt make the bombings any less of a crime now or then....just that - maybe plain vindictivneess, yes - if people knew exactly what was going on they approved of it. Hence maybe why the questioning of the whole Bomber Command offensive had to wait until that generation began to fade away?
"Well, my days of not taking you seriously are certainly coming to a middle." - Malcolm Reynolds

Njorl
Contributor
Posts: 370
Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2005 3:26 am
Location: Poland

Post by Njorl » Thu Aug 24, 2006 2:31 pm

Jan-Hendrik wrote:Interesting , that Torqui dug out the old myth of "terror attacks" on Wielun and Frampol , for Wielun see this :

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?t=85199

, interestingly it seems that the Frampol-myth bases on an article of the "Freie Welt" , East Berlin , 1965 . Anybody with primary sources regarding Frampol ( which seemed to be near the front line as it was attacked ) ?

Jan-Hendrik
Way off-topic for now, but I'd like to point out one thing here Jan-Hendrik. It comes down to the fact whether it indeed IS myth or not - one of these altenatives has to be supported by strong evidence. Without 'primary sources' - eg. German intelligence report stating that there were polish troops there or, on contrary, orders of attacking of defenseless towns - we can only speculate. These might be found in BA-MA in Freiburg (there is eg. an order, which is altough said not to had been issued, to destroy "Wasserkante" - ie. Warsaw - in an action of retaliation).

I'm open for valuable sources as well.
"Always be ready to speak your mind and a base man will avoid you" W. Blake, Proverbs of Hell

Cott Tiger
Associate
Posts: 856
Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2003 8:44 am
Location: England

Post by Cott Tiger » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:15 am

Hi Phylo
Regarding Guernica - thats an odd occasion, made odder by visiting the place with friends last year. the Spanish interior is a place where you don't mention the Civil War; whole families are living divided on either side of streets and haven't spoken for nearly 70 years....and are just waiting for another go-round. Guernica and Barcelona etc. are almost forgotten now, i remember a LOT more discussion of Guernica when I was younger. You have to remember it was ORDERED by Franco, the Condor Legion and the German support forces were under closer direct command of the Caudillo that is realised today, on the other side of that strange 40 years when noone talked much about Spain nor went there from the UK, except the resorts. That was a more bitter war, with a far more horrifying aftermath than we ever heard about; civilians dying by the campful didnt stop with the Boer war and start again after 1939....anyway, not to get sidetracked, Franco and his staff were in much closer command of events that history grants them, and seems to spend more time concentrating on the mayhem and chaos of their enemies. The Condor Legion acted there more like a true air force than history and the story of re-arming Germany gives them credit - they were issued orders and carried them out to the limits of their skill and ability. Yes once again it was wrong, but for some reason we always look on it as the fledgling Luftwaffe doing it; yes they flew the planes and dropped the bombs, but it was Franco who pressed the button on his fellow Spaniards, and civilians at that. NO war is more ferocious than CIVIL war :-(
Thanks for sharing your interesting experience of visiting Guernica. I understand what you are saying about Franco ordering the raid and being responsible for it. However, I would disagree if you are arguing that Luftwaffe and Germany do not share some of that responsibility. German, planes flown by German pilots intentionally killed innocent men, women and children. The Condor Legion was there with the complicit approval of Germany and its leaders.
Maybe we should now devolve the Eastern Front air war from the West, same as dividing off the Pacific; in the East it was very mch a war of ideologies, totally unlike the rest of the war in Europe, and BOTH sides saw the other as less than human. If the Red Air Force had had a significant strategic bomber force - my betting is of course it would have been used against civilian populations. After all, Stalin DID have no scruples about requesting Dresden...what bomber force they had was almost purely tactical, and with so many fronts and armies in the offensive after 1943, that tactical force got swallowed up supporting them. I dread to think what this discussion would have been like, WHAT we'd have been discussing, if the Red Air Force had been in tactical bombing range of German cities for a couple of years....
I agree. Had the Soviets had the weapons and hardware to hand they would not have hesitated in unleashing further destruction on the German populace.
Regarding the V-weapons; thats a very odd propaganda situation. Its very clear the average german knew NOTHING except that they were going to happen at some point. They were promised by Hitler, and delivered by him...not by his armies or airforce, but by him as Fuhrer and leader. The very same propaganda was used as we know between the Nazi ruling echelon and the Wehrmacht itslef, they had no knowledge of the details until they became reality, and were promised the same promises. So the weapons MAY have been built by and used by Germans, but they were viewed by German citizens as coming to them direct from the Fuhrer, not from their own factories and labour force at the end of their own streets or tramlines. There were no V1 funds in church halls or town centres, like the British Spitfire funds of the early war years; by the way, the Germans DID do that self-same things, a sort of "adopt-a-panther" scheme LOL but THESE weapons were outside the normal German provenance, like the W-SS was outside the Heer. In fact, a lot of Wehrmacht officers, inclding the Staffenberg plot officers realised that these made ANY chance of bargaining with the Allies very small, especially when the High Command had no way of stopping production or use except by finally removing Hitler
.


Thank you for expanding your explanation on this, it helps to understand your line of thinking. Your claim though that the weapons were a product of Hitler and the SS not of Germany or its armies and airforce is simply not true. In regards to the V-1 especially, the Luftwaffe was instrumental in the research, design, development, testing, and of course deployment of these terror weapons. They were not simply the product of some wild, evil, scheme by a bunch of SS boffins.
As for the German population being kept in the dark about the development of these weapons I am sure you are correct. However, I am equally sure that the German population, rightly or wrongly, had few reservations about launching these Vergeltungswaffe (vengeance or reprisial weapons), in view of the carnage inflicted by the RAF and USAF.

In relation to propaganda, strategic bombing, and the V1, the following is a very interesting website about the German V1 Rocket Leaflet Campaign. Some of the leaflets are very interesting and there are some which I had never come across before.

http://www.psywarrior.com/V1RocketLeaf.html

Regards,

Andre
Up The Tigers!

Jan-Hendrik
Patron
Posts: 1984
Joined: Wed May 04, 2005 8:42 am
Location: Wienhausen
Contact:

Post by Jan-Hendrik » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:23 am

Njorl , at least here :

http://forum.12oclockhigh.net/showthread.php?t=2585

someone provided primary sources , and , as in the Thread on AHF , it was Dr.Horst Boog who concluded that in the BA-MA documents no evidence for an order to do a "terror attack" was found . And , as far as I have asked for primary sources to conclude that this was a "terror attack" I still got nothing until today from those who spread this claim , f.e. those ones who did this "seroius" article on Wkipedia :wink:

I don't want to be the "Nitpicker" here , but such serious claims on topic "war crimes" must be proven with primary sources , without them they will be still claims only .

Jan-Hendrik

By the way , Andre , Guernica is still another "myth" , the city was a legal target and there was no order for a "terror attack" , despite of that this myth is still spread , f.e. see this discussion :

http://forum-der-wehrmacht.de/index.php?showtopic=16982

User avatar
Rodger Herbst
Associate
Posts: 648
Joined: Tue May 04, 2004 5:47 am

Post by Rodger Herbst » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:29 am

Ah W.vBraun-aimed for the stars-and hit London.

If the Germans or the Japanese had the A bomb do you think they would have hesitated to use it on the Allies,especally when they knew they were going to lose the war?
Any thoughts?

Torquez

Post by Torquez » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:42 am

it was Dr.Horst Boog who concluded that in the BA-MA documents
Dr Horst Boog speaks only about Wielun, not Frampol. And I never mentioned Wielun in this thread.
And Horst Boog main "argument" is that media attack "German patriots" who fought against Poland.
Sorry if I am unconviced.
Last edited by Torquez on Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

Jan-Hendrik
Patron
Posts: 1984
Joined: Wed May 04, 2005 8:42 am
Location: Wienhausen
Contact:

Post by Jan-Hendrik » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:44 am

Please , bring on finally primary evidences for those claims and you might convince me :wink:

Jan-Hendrik

Torquez

Post by Torquez » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:45 am

I already brought them.
You bring yours.
Convice you ? Please don't joke.

Jan-Hendrik
Patron
Posts: 1984
Joined: Wed May 04, 2005 8:42 am
Location: Wienhausen
Contact:

Post by Jan-Hendrik » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:46 am

You brought in claims , nothing more . So its your turn :D

Jan-Hendrik

Torquez

Post by Torquez » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:48 am

What claims ? I brought facts.
It is your claim that bombing of Frampol is a myth.
You bring evidence that your opinion is valid.
But I doubt you will get anything more then the usuall propaganda about "brave Wehramcht and Lufwaffe" defending itself from Polish and British agression.

Cott Tiger
Associate
Posts: 856
Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2003 8:44 am
Location: England

Post by Cott Tiger » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:48 am

Jan-Hendrik wrote: By the way , Andre , Guernica is still another "myth" , the city was a legal target and there was no order for a "terror attack" , despite of that this myth is still spread , f.e. see this discussion :

http://forum-der-wehrmacht.de/index.php?showtopic=16982
Hi Jan,

Unfortunately, I do not have sufficient knowledge on this subject to debate the legalities of the Luftwaffe attack on Guernica. However, what we do know beyond doubt, is that German planes manned by German pilots deliberately attacked and killed innocent civilians.

Is that a myth?

Regards,

Andre

PS: Unfortunately, I don’t read German and my German employee is not with me today so I can’t make use of your link.
Up The Tigers!

Jan-Hendrik
Patron
Posts: 1984
Joined: Wed May 04, 2005 8:42 am
Location: Wienhausen
Contact:

Post by Jan-Hendrik » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:49 am

If you don't know the difference between claim and proven facts every discussion is rather senseless ( why I am not surprised about this outcome ? :roll: ) .

Jan-Hendrik

Torquez

Post by Torquez » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:51 am

I am not surprised about the outcome either.
You claim bombing of Frampol and Wielun is a myth.
Bring evidence the quote and photos are falsified.
Are they part of conspiracy to defame the Wehrmacht and Luftwaffe ?
It is you that claims Wielun and Frampol are myths.
Bring evidence that they didn't happened.

Post Reply