Bombing The Germans

18 07 2007

Maurice Earls in The Dublin Review Of Books

If many in Britain have had difficulties with the bombing campaign, others have not. After Dresden, as Churchill was tip-toeing away from the strategic bombing campaign, Commander Arthur Harris commented that the Dresden bombing – which was already beginning to attract negative comment – was “one among many other highly effective operations”. Many regard Harris as a national hero and see this as nothing more than a statement of fact. The exculpatory arguments vary. Some claim that in war there are no rules. Some say the Germans started the war and are therefore responsible for everything that followed. Others say that German cities were legitimate targets and others again, in effect, say that there is no need to worry about civilian suffering in a country that perpetrated the genocide of the Jews. Attitudes of deep hostility towards Germans remain in areas of both elite and popular British culture.

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