*** World War II air campaign -- Battle of Britain the Blitz Coventry

The Blitz: Coventry--War Impact

Coventry  Blitz
Figure 1.--Here we see a family in Coventry after theLuftwaffe raid salvaging furniture from their bombed out home. Where they are headed we do not know.

The Luftwaffe attack on Coventry was devastating. It was not, however, the decisive blow that Göring sought. The city was stunned. Life in the city came to a sudden halt. City services were not operating. Shops were closed. But the city came back to life very quickly. More quickly than anyone had imagined before the war. World War II was the first real air war. And no one really knew how civilians would react. Knocking down medieval buildings did not advance the German war effort, especially when you expend valuable combat power to do so. And you do not destroy a city by killing 564 people. Most importantly, British aircraft production was not seriously int erupted. Destroying these factories would have required daylight raids. A capability the Luftwaffe did not have. Bombers attacking British cities north of London during the day would have been savaged by RAF fighter defenses. The Luftwaffe had already been seriously weakened by the fierce daylight fighting (July-September 1940). The Luftwaffe did not come back for a second raid. This would be in sharp contrast to the Allies when they began the strategic bombing of Germany. In less than a week the restoration of city life in Coventry was well underway. [Churchill, p. 377.] Within two weeks of the bombing factories began reopening. City services came back on line. The people Coventry buried their dead, sifted through the rubble of their bombed out homes for whatever could be salvaged, and got on with their lives.


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Created: 3:18 PM 1/15/2023
Last updated: 3:18 PM 1/15/2023