THE DESTRUCTION OF DRESDEN
"We have killed six or seven million Germans and probably there will be another million or so killed before the end of the war."
British Prime Minister Winston Churchill
Yalta, Feb. 7, 1945
January, 25, 2945, Winston Churchill proposed "basting the Germans in their retreat from Breslau."
He wanted the Germans burned alive and he got what he wanted in Dresden
DRESDEN, Germany - fire bombed by the British and Americans. Somewhere between 135,000 and 300,000 civilians were killed in the Feb. 13-14, 1945 attack. Numbers are difficult to know since so many refugees were in the city. 90% of the city center was destroyed.
The city was not a military target. It was known as a cultural center full of beautiful architecture with some buildings dating back a thousand years. Also, Dresden was undefended: no searchlights, no bursting flak appears on the film showing defense. Dresden was a civilian target
And Churchill knew it
After this devastating bombing, Goebbels proposed that Germany formally repudiate the Geneva Convention. Stalin had never signed it anyway. Why else would Churchill's and Roosevelt's pilots feel they could murder with impunity? Goebbels pushed Hitler to start executing Allied prisoners: one for each air raid victim.
Hitler at first endorsed the proposal. The killings at Dresden were appalling. But Himmler, Keitel and Bormann talked him out of it.
Bombing of civilians was against the Geneva Convention and International Law
Yet in 1941 the British made the deliberate decision to bomb civilian targets in Germany in order to
Break the spirit of the German people and assist her new "eastern ally"
The Russian Communists
July 9, 1941, Air Vice-Marshall SIr Norman Bottomley, issued a directive to
destroy the morale of the civil population as a whole
The bombing campaign was now to be focused on towns such as Cologne, Duisburg, Dusseldorf and others that were "suitable for attack on moonless nights, as they lie in the congest industrial towns, where the psychological effect will be the greatest."
Professor Frederick Lindemann proposed an area bombing offensive of 58 German towns with a population of more than 100,000 inhabitants with the purpose of making around 8,000 people homeless in each town. The goal was to make about a third of the German population homeless by the middle of 1943.
British Bomber Command was reminded in February 14 of 1942 that its primary purpose was to attack Germany's residential areas.
"I suppose it is quite clear that the aiming points are to be the built-up areas, not, for instance, the dockyards or aircraft factories where these are mentioned?" Sir Charles Portal was to make it quite clear to the pilots that the policy was to destroy residential areas, including the workmen's houses, in order to undermine the morale of the German people to a point where their capacity for armed resistance was weakened.
Dresden was the ultimate, deadly result of this policy
Dresden city center
Over 90% of the city center was destroyed
Bodies waiting to be disposed
Bodies to be disposed
|Stars & Stripes|
London Edition, Saturday, May 5, 1945, Vol. 5, No. 156
Air Raid on Dresden Killed More Than 300,000
by Dan Regan
Stars and Stripes Staff Writer
With the 1st Army, May 3 (Delayed) -- The Allied air raid on Dresden on Feb. 13-14 killed 300,000 persons, according to a report by Dresden police to a group of 600 -- British and French -- prisoners who were given passes by the Germans to enter the American lines.
Nine British PWs were working in Dresden during the raid and said the horror and devastation caused by the Anglo-American 14-hour raid was beyond human comprehension unless one could see for himself.
One British sergeant said,
"Reports from Dresden police that 300,000 died as a result of the bombing didn't include deaths among 1,000,000 evacuees from the Breslau area trying to escape from the Russians. There were no records on them.
"After seeing the results of the bombing, I believe these figures are correct."
"They had to pitchfork shriveled bodies onto trucks and wagons and cart them to shallow graves on the outskirts of the city. But after two weeks if work the job became too much to cope with and they found other means to gather up the dead."
"They burned bodies in a great heap in the center of the city, but the most effective way, for sanitary reasons, was to take flamethrowers and burn the dead as they lay in the ruins. They would just turn the flamethrowers into the houses, burn the dead and then close off the entire area. The whole city is flattened. They were unable to clean up the dead lying beside roads for several weeks," the sergeant added.
Burning the dead in Dresden
The ashes were then buried in mass graves
for more information read the book:
Apocalypse 1945: The Destruction of Dresden
The horrifying original account of the most devastating air attack in history - the book which first told the world what happened to one Germany city in 1945
by David Irving