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The Blitz

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Chun-Xien Kang

on 16 January 2013

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Transcript of The Blitz

The Blitz
By Alan, Sean and Chun-Xien Fact file At a Glance What was the "Blitz"? The Blitz was strategic and frequent bombing of British towns and cities by the German Luftwaffe.
It happened in 1940 and 1941.
The main targets were industrial cities and towns, as well as ports and military bases vital for Britain's role in World War II to continue. Why did it happen? It was the Nazi air general Walter Wever which proposed the idea of strategic bombing, his ideas were (Quoted from wikipedia):

"1. To destroy the enemy air force by bombing its bases and aircraft factories, and defeating enemy air forces attacking German targets.
2. To prevent the movement of large enemy ground forces to the decisive areas by destroying railways and roads, particularly bridges and tunnels, which are indispensable for the movement and supply of forces
3.To support the operations of the army formations, independent of railways, i.e, armoured forces and motorised forces, by impeding the enemy advance and participating directly in ground operations.
4. To support naval operations by attacking naval bases, protecting Germany's naval bases and participating directly in naval battles
5. To paralyze the enemy armed forces by stopping production in the armaments factories"

The effectiveness of strategic bombing was disputed, however the Nazis still went ahead with the idea. Technology Technology is key to winning any war.
It was the same with the Blitz.
Communication, equipment and weapons and counter measures by the British are the 3 main points that we are going to focus on. Communications Celestial navigation was unreliable at the time so the Luftwaffe relied on radios to navigate.
Knickebein ("Crooked leg"), X-Gerät (X-Device), and Y-Gerät (Y-Device) were the 3 main radio navigation systems.
This helped the Luftwaffe blind land, control where to drop bombs. The crosses shown on the previous slide show a potential target (X marks the spot concept).
This led to the cat and mouse chase of finding transmitters and hiding them. British Counter Measures Invasion of Britain
Having taken France, a major invasion waited.
Everyone in Britain was vulnerable to attack. Hitler used the Blitz to prepare for Operation Sea Lion, using strategic and frequent bombing to frighten civilians and damage morale.
However, Hitler became obsessed with invading Russia, became distracted and ditched plans to invade Britain. Civilian Protection Significance of the Blitz:
• Hitler’s second big mistake
• England became a base of the Allied forces Hitler's Big Mistake: • Hitler thought that bombing them would lead the civilians to break their will and give up, but instead it strengthened their resolve.
• All the people were ready for it! They were ready to fight!
• Children were sent overseas and the more adults volunteered to help the Allied army. • In revenge, the Allied forces severely bombed Berlin. Many innocent German civilians lost their lives.
• As a result, the German civilians went to Hitler and protested.
• So, Hitler had to stop his operation in Britain.
• This was a failure for the Germans and a victory for the Allied forces. The Allied plan and their victory "When you hear the warning take cover at once. Remember that most of the injuries in an air raid are caused not by direct hits by bombs but by flying fragments of debris or by bits of shells. Stay under cover until you hear the sirens sounding continuously for two minutes on the same note which is the signal "Raiders Passed"."
Air Raid Warnings 1939
Sirens were used to alert people when a German bomber was coming and when to get out of the shelters
People hid in bomb shelters and the underground. Aftermath As stated before, the Blitz didn't succeed the Nazis intentions.
British morale was in fact strengthened instead.
This distracted Nazi troops from invading Russia, making the Germans lose valuable men, time and resources.
In comparison to the British bombing of Berlin, it was not as successful. The Holocaust • Was a persecution/ killing of 6 million Jews and 5 million ‘others’
• Was a war within a war against people like: Jews, coloured people, disabled, homosexuals, political opponents, religions Hitler didn’t agree with etc.
• Was a well organized, systematic killing machine that had 3 stages
• Hitler called the holocaust “the final solution to the Jewish problem” Solution 1:
• Hitler & Nazis made life difficult for Jews and ‘undesirables’ so they would get fed up and leave the country
For example : Non- Jews could not marry Jews
• They did things like encouraging vandalism and hate crimes Solution 2: • Jews and ‘undesirables’ in Germany + German held territory were taken to ghettos (located in cities outside of Germany) and forced to live there
This let Nazis control what they were doing, and where they were at all times Ghetto: a wall and guarded section of a city where all Jews and "undesirables" were forced to live. Solution 3:
1) Jews + ‘undesirables’ were taken from ghettos and forced to labour camps
• Were run by the SS
• They were forced into slave labour and many people died while working
2) Concentration Camps (aka death camps)
• Old and young people were taken to death camps
• Those who could work were taken to stage one
• Men & women were separated
• The SS ran the gas chambers which killed large amounts of people at once
• Men and women’s hairs were shaved off and used for pillows
• Then they were stripped from their clothes, which went to German families who were bombed
• Were herded into a dark room with sprinklers which gas came through Had two phases Crimes Against Japanese Took place after the Japans attack on Pearl Harbour
People along west coast in north America started to have Xenophobia
People who were Japanese or had a Japanese ancestry lost their jobs, businesses, and property
Money was taken away by the government, theyno access to their own money
Japanese Canadians had night-time curfews so they could only go out in morning for work only
The Japanese faced a lot of discrimination
They weren’t allowed to vote or serve in Canadian Army
Canadian Japanese were rounded up and taken to Internment camps where they could be watched over
→Many non- Japanese were also taken because people mistook them Asians for Japanese
Internment camps were located in the middle of no where
Lived in things called barracks
> →didn’t have bedrooms, bathrooms, or kitchens
> families tried to make things better by doing things like building partitions to make
Family system was threatened
→eg. Families no longer ate at home together
The younger kids lined up for meals instead of cooking food when playing games
Kids ate with friends rather than with parents THE END! Walter Wever Commanders and Leaders Hermann Göring Adolf Hitler Hugo Sperrle Albert Kesselring Hans Jeschonnek Winston Churchill Hugh Dowding Frederick Pile Owen Tudor Boyd Sir Leslie Gossage 40, 000 -43, 000 civillians
46, 000 civillians injured
wounded may be as high as 139, 000 3363 aircrew killed
2265 aircraft lost German Strategy Style Blitz, is the shortened word of Blitzkrieg, which means lightning war.
This indicates that short but effective, used to quickly deal with immediate threat, then damage.
Doubt, confusion and rumour were sure to paralyze both the government and the defending military.
Even though the Blitz was supposed to be efficient, this is disputed. Before the war It was in the 1920s and 30s that air power theorists Giulio Douhet and Billy Mitchell proposed the idea that air attacks could win wars without support.
It was widely believed that air attcks are unstoppable, one of the reasons that the Germans started the Blitz.
This is one reason it was called the Blitz.
Attacking factories, political buildings and civilians would render the war effort useless for enemies, as well as destroying morale. Timing The Blitz was designed to catch the enemy like lightning.
That was why timing was crucial.
Attacking by night may have muddled pilots up and obscured vision, but was more likely to surprise civilians sleeping. Result: German strategic loss Map of Nazi communication beams Planes and Weapons The Luftwaffe were superior as they had night attacks equipment, compared to the RAF which didn't have the technology.
This meant that the RAF couldn't attack Luftwaffe oil fields and shelters, restricting their ideas and choices. In industrial areas fires and lighting were simulated. This lured German bombers away and kept the main targets safe.
To protect civillians, bomb shelters were construsted and shelter was found in the London underground, which will discussed later.
Jammers were developed, such as X-ray machines, to confuse bombers and make them lose support. Was it that effective? Experience As heard from the above, being bombed was quite scary.
Children, teachers and parents were evacuated to the countryside to counter this. Alerts Evacuation This is presentation is mainly on the Blitz, so I won't go into details on it. Propaganda The British government employed various to boost civilian morale.
John MacLeod who lived in Clydebank as a boy said: "There’s certainly evidence that the Government was anxious to downplay the Clydebank Blitz. For instance, they took a long time to release official casualty figures – and only after great pressure from local MPs in the House of Commons.”
All this was crucial for Britain winning the war. Quotes All of these quotes are real, and are among the most accurate evidence about the Blitz. "I think I can remember the sirens and going to the shelter. That sound is still in your ears and it still makes me feel weird when I hear them"
Mavis Templeman
Survivor of the Blitz in Hull

This gives us a vivid idea of how the Blitz was like and standard procedures for civilians.

"Hitler thought that wiping Coventry out would wipe out the British, but we were bloody-minded and would never have let that happen."
Jean Taylor
Survivor of the Blitz in Coventry

This shows how the Blitz, however devastating it was , didn't break up morale, and instead urged them to fight on and be "bloody-minded".
Full transcript