Was the Allied Bombing of Germany a Necessary Evil or an Immoral Action - Essay Example

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This paper "Was the Allied Bombing of Germany a Necessary Evil or an Immoral Action" discusses the fire-bombings of the medieval German city of Dresden in 1945. Also, it explains why these bombings of civilian targets are generally regarded as an indefensible, shameful act perpetrated by the Allies.   …
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Was the Allied Bombing of Germany a Necessary Evil or an Immoral Action
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Download file to see previous pages The British bombing of Dresden, a city not much smaller than Manchester, towards the end of the war is widely acclaimed as a war crime because this cultural capital of Germany was filled with refugees trying to escape Allied bombing and was of no military value. This and the indiscriminant bombings of other German cities are largely viewed by historians as retaliation for the London bombings by the Germans. Were the bombing campaigns an act strictly motivated by revenge and should, therefore, be regarded as morally reprehensible or were they the result of a necessary and successful strategy that may have gone a little too far? 

The Allies, particularly the British, have been likely rightfully vilified for decimating German towns and civilian populations near the end of the war essentially in retaliation for the Luftwaffe bombing raids over London. This strategic bombing campaign took the lives of an estimated 600,000 German civilians. However, the reality of the situation must be kept in the proper context. Germany started the war, killed approximately 12 million civilians including six million in concentration camps and would have taken a greater toll if they had beaten the Allied forces. The Germans and British certainly were not the only nations that committed wartime atrocities. Many hundreds of thousands of German prisoners who were taken by the Americans died in prison camps. Witnesses told of gaunt bodies wearing clothing smeared with diarrhea huddled in muddy holes with no shelter and perhaps a rotten potato to eat. Many had to eat grass and drink urine to survive. According to the American Red Cross, at least 98 percent of American prisoners in German prison camps survived but the West German government stated that more than one million German prisoners of war ‘disappeared,’ a suspicious phenomenon which the Americans falsely blamed on the Soviet Union  (Mohr, 2007).  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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