Reviews for The Dresden Question
Koshechka chapter 1 . 11/25/2006
I agree with you entirely that Dresden should definitely be questioned and be an important issue when we discuss the Second World War. However, I'm not sure if the bombing of Dresden is really so forgotten or unspoken of as you suggest. If you look around on the Internet, you can find plenty of material discussing it. You might find that there is actually a big controversy over how many people were killed-revisionist historians are now claiming the number was far smaller than previously believed. Of course, there's no way to be sure.

It's certainly wrong that your textbook doesn't mention Dresden. I looked it up in mine-it is given a tiny little note, but I'm not sure you can blame the writers because they didn't have all that much space. The Battle of Stalingrad is given only a paragraph, and some consider it the most important battle of the war. If this were a textbook of World War II history, then that would be an outrage. Otherwise...I'm not really sure Dresden deserves all that much recognition. What about Japanese cities that were severely bombed (not atomic-bombed-just bombed)? They are rarely mentioned, and though I can't think of the exact numbers right now, the death tolls are also high.

About the atomic bombings-you're right, they are usually given a lot more weight, but I think that's because their significance goes beyond numbers. The atomic bombings are the start of the nuclear age and the arms race, which will be important for the next half of the century. Also-as a side note-although the atomic bombings may have killed fewer people than the fire-bombing of Dresden INITIALLY, the main damage caused by nuclear weapons only comes much later. Once again, I don't know numbers, but thousands and thousands of Japanese people have died of diseases associated with radiation, and are still dying today. So that brings the number of dead much higher.

Okay, despite all that, I still think your point is very valid and should be discussed. Another thing no one seems to want to talk about is American atrocities during the war. It's not only the Nazis that did horrible things to prisoners of war, civilians, and their own people. All sides committed atrocities but people don't really like to talk about those done by the Allies. (Of course, I'm not saying the Americans were in any way at the same level as Hiter or Stalin. However, I do think "questionable" actions-such as Dresden, for example-should be openly discussed.)

Sorry that's so long. Would be glad to discuss this more by e-mail if you're interested.
Liberator of the Mind chapter 1 . 4/17/2004
I completely agree with you,you should read my article on Dresden.
CuteCubMD chapter 1 . 8/7/2002
You pose a very thought provoking question with this article and make some good points. I imagine it may be the same rationalle as Sherman had during the burning of Georgia: destroy anything beautiful held by the enemy. I don't happened before my mother was even born. I do know this: death on that large a scale is always a tragedy, and always will be, no matter who it is. Thanks for bringing up a valid point.
The Blue Robed One chapter 1 . 5/17/2002
this is very well written and makes one think - well done! i think you have every right to question Dresden, and thank you for putting this up to show everybody that the Allies were not angels in the war either. i don't think anybody can be, in a war.

(and yes, i also agree about ShinigamiForever's work!)
fieldofyellowdandelions chapter 1 . 4/16/2002
Dresden. I'll have to look that up. While I can understand why I've never heard of it- It was pushed aside by nuclear warfare and genocide. -, that doesn't mean that it should be. We can't forget because what we forget, we're doomed to repeat.
Death's Girlfriend chapter 1 . 4/12/2002
Extremely well-written, and very interesting. I, never having heard of Dresden before, was really shocked when I read this. Excellent work!
Sof chapter 1 . 4/11/2002
You have to understand that Germany had to get the message that enough was enough. Most of the Allied leaders (namely Roosevelt) were content on doing to the Nazi's what they did to Europe. The spear was turned. The Germans destroyed countless targets and people for abosolutley no reason. Regardless, it was senseless, you were right, but the German purpose was pretty senseless too.

Overall, interesting enough to put out the fact that the allies werent the good-hearted supersoldiers that they are often portrayed as, but I do believe that Hitler had to get the point that The United State's morals could not always be used against them.

Regards, Sof
Kievsky chapter 1 . 4/10/2002
It is my understanding that the bombing of Dresden was intended as a purely political strike (to destroy German morale and maybe to delay the Germans in responding to the Soviet threat, I don't remember) that backfired when it couldn't be properly justified. Furthermore, the original plan, Operation Thunderclap, was created by the British. Thunderclap was designed to target many major cities renowned for their historical or political/military value (Berlin was also on the original list with Dresden). RAF craft began the air raid and bombed Dresden; it was when the city was already largely in ruins when the United States B-17 bombers were sent in to finish the job.

Was the bombing morally right? No, probably not. But the blame does not lie squarely on the Americans, and atrocities can be very difficult to determine during wartime.
Forestsilver chapter 1 . 4/10/2002
I must admit I knew nothing of the city Dresden before. Then again, I live/d in the United States. Very good.
Teufelhund chapter 1 . 4/9/2002
"...It means the history of this heroic struggle will be written by the enemy; that our youth will be trained by Northern schoolteachers; will learn from Northern school books their version of the war; will be impressed by the influences of history and education to regard our gallant dead as traitors, and our maimed veterans as fit objects for derision..."

Maj. Gen Patrick R. Cleburne, CSA

January, 1864

I'm glad someone else cares about this as much as I do. However, as General Cleburne stated about the Civil War, history will always be written by the victors. As long as the Allies are portrayed as the "good guys" fighting a just war against the forces of "evil," Dresden will never be mentioned in the history books.