Was the bombing of Dresden necessary?

The bombing of Dresden

On February 15, Dresden, which had already been completely destroyed and overcrowded with Silesian refugees, had to survive another attack by the US Air Force. Up to 25,000 people lost their lives. The dead, charred beyond recognition, lay for days on the street or in the rubble before the piles of corpses could be burned to prevent epidemics.

Until August 1944, Dresden was the only major German city to have been largely spared from Allied bombing raids and was still almost undamaged at the beginning of 1945, although it was an important traffic junction between Prague, Berlin, Leipzig, Nuremberg and Warsaw. In addition to smaller armaments factories, there were also larger industrial plants in the form of Zeiß-Ikon AG, Paul Märksch AG and the aircraft works in Dresden-Klotzsche. However, in view of the lack of raw materials and the increasing disorganization of military supply routes at the beginning of 1945, these targets were not transport and industrial facilities that were important to the war effort. Since Dresden was also outside the combat area, the air strikes ordered by the Commander-in-Chief of the British Bomber Command Arthur Harris (1892-1984) hardly had any military targets. The destruction of Dresden was the culmination of targeted area bombing by the Allies against the German civilian population in order to break their morale. The bombing of Dresden once again offered Nazi propaganda an opportunity to appeal to the Germans to persevere.