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What People get Wrong about the Bombing of Dresden

    49 Comments and 134 replies
  • etbadaboum
    etbadaboum Is it true that phosphorus bombs were used in order to, combined with favorable meteorological conditions, start a great fire in the inner city (composed mainly of old buildings whose structures were made of wood) that lasted several days specifically targeting civilians? From what I remember of my reading (a long time ago) it was meant to break the German morale from the bottom, even just a few months before the end of the war.
    Thanks for the video, right on point and documented (will check the report for sure).
    • penguins inadiorama
      penguins inadiorama "The central problem with this claim is that the central leadership of Japan never made any concrete attempts to make peace on anywhere near acceptable terms."
      NOTICE THE QUALIFIER AT THE END OF THE SENTENCE
    • penguins inadiorama
      penguins inadiorama Upon the formation of the government of Admiral Kantarō Suzuki in April 1945, Tōgō was asked to return to his former position as Minister of Foreign Affairs. In that position, he was one of the chief proponents for acceptance of the Potsdam Declaration which, he felt, contained the best conditions for peace Japan could hope to be offered. Up until the last, Tōgō hoped for favorable terms from the Soviet Union. At Tōgō's suggestion, no official response was made to the Declaration at first, though a censored version was released to the Japanese public, while Tōgō waited to hear from Moscow. However, Allied leaders interpreted this silence as a rejection of the Declaration, and so bombing was allowed to continue.
  • Otterpawps
    Otterpawps I liked h3h3 when they kept things light. Their podcast has been a loud speaker for misinformation and bad jokes.
  • Søren Kierkegård
    Søren Kierkegård Oh man. You're doing such a great job. Germans like you uphold my belief in the future of Europe, literally. Grüssen aus Polen!
    • darhem1
      darhem1 Really great video, although I was aware of the problems around the history of the Dresden bombing, I was not aware that people were getting it so completely wrong. Excellent job.
      • ocolor
        ocolor Sehr gutes Video, mein Abo hast du.
        Find's lustig wie Ethan hier Vonneguts Buch als historischen Fakt darstellt. Man muss doch echt kein ausgebildeter Historiker sein, um zu wissen, dass literarische Werke niemals unreflektiert als Quellen genutzt werden sollten.
        • Eunoia Vision
          Eunoia Vision Who owns history? Sad that Ethan couldn't get his facts straight. But 3As isn't doing much better. Since according to his About page he is out to "Doing stuff about the bad history on the far-right and more" he proves to be just another lefty that will also engage in obfuscation and ad hominem attacks to make his argument. If he cared about facts, he’d be worried about bad history on the far left as well.
          Calling David Irving a holocaust denier (when it's plain that freedom of speech is nonexistent in Europe) is to make 3A's viewers dismiss Irving automatically. Irving actually has done the leg work and visited archives in Europe and the USA to research his books and didn't get his figure from "Nazi propaganda". Which is more research than 3A did with pulling up a Wikipedia article and quoting the Dresden city report, which by the way he doesn't mention where they get their figure and that they might have their own agenda in downplaying the number. Why would they wait so long to even research this? And as for a commission of 15 historians? Were they German historians? Independent historians? Because this is as important as well as how they got to their "conclusions". No German historian who cares about his job, financial ruin or the threat of prison will ever go against the official history of WW2.
          Somethings to consider when listening to 3A's video:
          Irving never stated 300,000 died. He has revised his numbers several times since the publishing of his Dresden book in the early 60’s. This is normal for a historian. Germany banned it early on and it has never allowed the updated reprints there. That is why 3A shows his old copy of the book in the video. Irving has used his original figure of 135,000 based upon a school teacher (Hans Voigt) who was put in charge of Dresden’s Missing Persons bureau and has since shown decoded SS/Police messages by the British and still available for view in the Public Record Office in the UK that corroborate this figure. The 25,000 number was reported shortly after in early March by the police chief of Dresden which was first discovered by Irving himself doing his research 50 years ago! Then later the Mayor himself said 6 weeks afterwards that over 100,000 names had been registered as missing. Irving also has stated that Goebbels exaggerated numbers as high as 500,000. If he was a ‘denier’ as 3A claims, why would he go against this number?
          It was proven very difficult to identify charred remains as well as whole families who were wiped out, as such many death certificates were not filed. Even a cursory reading of Irving’s research shows that he himself has questioned and revised his own numbers several times and at the very least leaves the discussion open.
          Firebombs such as the ones dropped on Dresden aren't meant for military targets. Whether there was war industry there or not, these bombs were meant for civilians. Let’s be clear, this was an act of civilian targeting. If it was justified is a matter of opinion.
          Perhaps refugees weren't permitted to stay in Dresden, but they were still fleeing to there, whether or not they were all given housing is something else and no known number of refugees has ever been verified.
          History is indeed written by the victors. That is not a conspiracy theory.
          Finally, calling Germans who commemorate the bombing "Nazis" is really sad and disingenuous. Are the Japanese who commemorate the destruction of their cities by nuclear weapons also Nazi's? Are the losers forever to condemn their ancestors to oblivion?
          And why doesn’t 3A define what a Holocaust denier is since he throws that epithet around so easily and since both the official numbers and “facts” have changed so often since the end of the war?
          If you really care about this subject, do your own research people. Don't rely on people like 3A who will in short hand happily throw his own people under the bus because of his own ideology. This isn't history, this is propaganda.
          A Strasbourg court ruling in 2013 stated that Historiography is in its essence controversial and debatable, and hardly lends itself to objective and absolute truths or definitive conclusions. This seems to go without saying, but some people need reminded I guess.
          Who owns history? Certainly not the Germans and certainly not 3A. 3A’s supercilious video would have been better served had he left it at “morally ambiguous” given the death tolls caused by Germans during the war instead of trying to prove numbers he himself hasn’t researched.
          • Krills Daily
            Krills Daily If you cared about facts you would attack the misinformation he presented (he didn't) instead of him being a "lefty".
          • ThePunisher
            ThePunisher If you even bothered to read the rest of his comment you could see that he adressed 3a's mis information. but i guess that is to much for your goldfish like 3 seconds attention spam
          • Him Pim
            Him Pim History is indeed written by the victors. That is not a conspiracy theory.
            in fact it is.you dont visit many countries bro.albanian,croatian and serbian hsitory books arte totally diffrent for start.same goes for bulgaria,turkey,ukraine,russia or hsot of other coutnries.In fact germans very much omit many of their historical atrocities from books but as they majorly fucked up in 20th century they are cautious with ww2.
          • Chris Procter
            Chris Procter "Calling David Irving a holocaust denier (when it's plain that freedom of speech is nonexistent in Europe) is to make 3A's viewers dismiss Irving automatically. "
            Fun fact, in 1996 David Irving was accused of being a holocaust denier in a book, so (because freedom of speech is only a good thing if people agree with you), he sued the author and publisher (Penguin books) for libel. He lost.
            The judge said "he is an active holocaust denier" and "for his own ideological reasons persistently and deliberately misrepresented and manipulated historical evidence;" so its fair to say he is exactly what 3A described and if he's your only source then you are doing the same thing as him, only beliving the evidence that suits your politics and ignoring anything that disagrees with you.
          • Him Pim
            Him Pim when it's plain that freedom of speech is nonexistent in Europe
            bs statement.but its hard for people which are obsssesed with denying holocaust.
        • MeLikeRed
          MeLikeRed "We've defeated the wrong enemy."
          - George S Patton when Berlin fell.
        • Donzel Blake
          Donzel Blake I've never heard of this bombing until now. It shows I still have a lot to learn about history. Thank you for this video sir I'm glad there are people like you on the left. We have to be willing to look at are selves and not just the opposition.
          In a time of deceit being truthful is itself a revolutionary act- George Orwell.
          • Diche Bach
            Diche Bach Unbelievable that Ethan would make such claims when he obviously has no idea what he is talking about.
            The bombing of Dresden was a mere scratch compared to the overall destruction of the war. Scores of cities across the entire Old World were bombed into states of nearly complete dysfunction. The fact that Dresden has received so much attention is purely a reflection of political posturing and propaganda on the part of myriad groups immediately after the war, followed by decades of talking head dim wits leveraging the existing rhetoric for their own "purposes."
            • Maximilien Robespierre
              Maximilien Robespierre Isn't the idea that there wasn't enough death certificates negated by the fact that the entire country was at the edge of collapse? 25k seems very small and I am not saying that number is false but considering that the German state was focused on the war effort and close to absolute destruction, isn't it easy to accept that they weren't issuing death certificates?
              • Merry
                Merry The number by that nature is underrepresentative of what happened, and I doubt that this youtuber is too stupid to know.
              • Peter D
                Peter D Germany, and the UK for that matter, had been keeping very good public records for over 100 years before the Dresden bombings. Historical analysis would easily debunk inflated death tolls and it did. Dresden was not an example of Britain at her best but it happened towards the end of a very tiring war against an enemy that had shown itself, repeatedly, to be highly inventive and effective. Compared to the protracted bombing of Essen and Hamburg by Britain and the US its notability was the the very short time span of its execution. It was the most terrible war the world has ever known and bad things happened but what happened to Dresden should not be elevated into the realm of the far more serious and despicable wrongdoing perpetrated by Germany.
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