In the fall of 1940, how did British people feel?
In my view, Britons during 1940/1941 were the most courageous people in history, but wasn't it terrifying and depressing to face Nazi Germany all alone, with Germany bombing British cities by night? With no allies and death in the streets, wasn't that just an awful time to live in Britain? Didn't it seem hopeless? Were people livid and sad at the same time? Or did people know that Britain would make it to victory?
I don't think I'd have the strength of character to make it through that.
- jeffrey fLv 72 months ago
The mood in Britain was somber and grimly determined to hang on.
- Anonymous2 months ago
Apparently many including the war leaders in England believed England could not hold off the Germans when they invaded. Many were ready to accept Hitler's offer for preferential treatment if England surrendered, but Churchill knew Hitler could not be trusted as he had promised Britain's then Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, that Germany would not invade Poland and had no empire building plans. Many British foolishly believed Hitler was an honorable man and little would change for the British people if they accepted Hitler's terms of surrender. Many British believed that it was futile to carry on fighting the Germans as Germany appeared to have effortlessly beaten France and British military forces at Dunkirk and forced Britain to recover her troops with small pleasure craft and fishing boats leaving the best of Britain's military weaponry on the beaches of Dunkirk. England stood alone in Europe as the only country left fighting the Germans and many saw England's chance of hanging on for any length of time as unlikely and worried if they did not surrender peacefully and forced Germany to take Britain by force that Hitler would not give Britain the preferential treatment Hitler had promised. .
Churchill believed that if the Germans did invade that good planning could destroy their supply lines. Ports were rigged so their port facilities could be blown up and unloading of German supplies would be held up until the Germans could repair them giving the British a chance to fight a poorly supplied German military. Petrol drums were hidden along roadsides with explosives rigged so as the Germans passed these booby traps the explosives would be set off turning the road into massive fire bombs incinerating all troops and equipment being transported on them. You could imagine the fear that would have worried the German soldiers as they past any farm hedge or trees wondering if the whole road would be on fire at any moment burning them alive. Roads were rigged so tanks would have to turn down narrow town roads where they could be attacked and the tanks would struggle to be able to effectively use their guns. Britain was the first country Germany attacked that was well organized. Britain's radar stations and well organized Royal Air Force which for the first time the German Luftwaffe must come in contact with aircraft every bit as capable and deadly as the German bf109 waiting for them in the air ready for battle. The British surface Navy was still the most powerful in the world and with the cover of the RAF could decimate any German cross channel invasion force. Germany knew this so their aim was to destroy the RAF to deny air cover for the British Navy as it attempted to destroy the invasion in the channel. Fortunately just as the RAF is on the cusp of being wiped out, Hitler ordered the Luftwaffe to switch to bombing London in retaliation for the British bombing of Berlin. This was a blunder by Hitler as it allowed the RAF to rebuild without the Luftwaffe constantly harassing them. Finally the RAF wore the Luftwaffe down and the Germans were losing too many planes as the British RAF was becoming too strong to defeat and Germany had to accept their invasion plans would not be able to proceed so Hitler believed there was still time to invade Russia so turned his attention to them. (another blunder by Hitler)
I would say when the British found they had beaten the Germans in their invasion plans British morale started to rise as pride in being the first country in Europe to successfully fight off a German invasion.
One last thing was when Churchill was inspecting bomb damage from the previous night's bombing attack he was abused by a woman whose house was destroyed, who believed Britain should have surrendered, where she said "if you were my husband I would poison your coffee", to which Churchill angrily yelled back, "madam, if I was your husband I would drink it".
- Anonymous2 months ago
They did have allies.
- LudwigLv 72 months ago
My grandfather fought them for 4 years in WWI, and had very clear ideas about how he and his men in the Home Guard (who were NOT all 'Dads Army' types,) could hold an armored column if and when one moved up the valley. He didn't know how long he could hold them, but he was certain he and his men could. He had previously been kissed on both cheeks by a French General for taking and holding a wood for a few days, in WWI.
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- TinaLv 72 months ago
Dave (currently 1465)Once more you are lying.
You say: "Even the history censors can't deny the fact that Hitler made numerous offers with Britain to avoid going to war, but not a single one was even considered."
On the contrary, as you very well know, it was Britain who made repeated concessions to Hitler. They had had quite enough of war with Germany in WW1 and understandably went too far in trying to avoid it. If he had been stopped when he marched into the Rhineland it is not impossible that the horrors of WW2 might have been avoided.
Astonishingly you then say: "Poland wanted to go up against Germany but was too weak to do so on its own. With promises of support from Britain, it felt confident that it had the support they needed."
Poland did not 'go up against Germany' - Germany invaded Poland, after a publicity campaign organised by Goebbels, pretending that Poland was threatening Germany, and fake attacks organised on German borders.
Germany was not 'provoked' to attack Poland.
You always manage to get the facts exactly the wrong way round.
And yes, East, the war years were not happy ones for Britain. As you might expect.
Fred - the 'poisoned coffee' story is usually attributed to Churchill and Lady Astor. However it was in circulation (with different, or anonymous speakers) as early as 1900
- Anonymous2 months ago
Ecstatic we had beaten the Nazis in October 1940 we were Safe from invasion and not a single bit of Help from the USA
Dunkirk we turned Disaster into a Victory and there was Nothing the Nazis did to stop us
this was the True Arsenal of democracy from 1939
the Nazis Bombed us in London for 56 days straight then it ended we Laughed at the Nazis all that work for Nothing
when Churchill took power he gave Germany one Option Unconditional surrender if Hitler wanted peace he should have Evacuated all his Troops from Poland
or France as an Honest Gesture he wanted peace all he wanted was the RAF to leave him alone to conquer the rest of Europe
Trust Hitler Look at what happened to the Pact with Russia
Hitler Planned WW2 from 1933 he invaded Poland the RAF beat him in 1940 we won at Dunkirk
the Bohemian Lance Cpl lost WW2 because of his own Ineptitude
his Generals were Right in saying we must not start WW2 until 1945 that way Germany would have a Jet in the Air and a Real Navy
But one Ego Hitlers Destroyed that Opportunity
- Anonymous2 months ago
Nervous, very nervous.