German Historians and the Bombing of German Cities
German Historians and the Bombing of German Cities
The Contested Air War
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Reviews and Features

"Benda Beckmann’s ability to compile, synthesize, and summarize disparate histories is admirable; the book functions as an excellent survey of the way German views on the air war changed over time." S. Anderson, Choice Connect

"Benda-Beckmann’s study presents a detailed, focused assessment of German interpretations of Der Bombenkrieg. His discussion of the debates among and between West German historians such as Horst Boog, Manfred Messerchmitt, and Klaus Maier and East German historian Olaf Groener is superb." - Douglas Carl Peifer, Journal of Military History

Bas Von Benda-Beckmann

German Historians and the Bombing of German Cities

The Contested Air War

Today, strategic aerial bombardments of urban areas that harm civilians, at times intentionally, are becoming increasingly common in global conflicts. This book reveals the history of these tactics as employed by nations that initiated aerial bombardments of civilians after World War I and during World War II. As one of the major symbols of German suffering, the Allied bombing left a strong imprint on German society. Bas von Benda-Beckmann explores how German historical accounts reflected debates on postwar identity and looks at whether the history of the air war forms a counternarrative against the idea of German collective guilt. Provocative and unflinching, this study offers a valuable contribution to German historiography.
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Bas Von Benda-Beckmann

Bas von Benda-Beckmann is affiliated with the NIOD Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies in Amsterdam.