Hutchinson's Pictorial History of the War, Series 26, No 4

HUTCHINSONS PICTORIAL HISTORY OF THE WAR WHEN THE BOMBERS STRIKE Concentrated hursts as Liberators of the U.S. 8th Army Air Force register hits on the Zeitz synthetic oil plant in Germany on 12th May. 1044. estimate thai Germany outputs ol petrol for March this year was down to an almost negligible percentage o f what it was before our bombers started to attack oil just ten months ago and yet somehow the Germans fought on. They did the most extraordinary things. The German Air Force for example has been using a quarter o f a million horses for its ground transport— in Italy it even tow edits aircraft about the airfields with oxen instead o f tractors. Again the trickle ol petrol which they have been getting these last few weeks has only been produced b y prodigies o f repair work. 1 was looking at photographs o f one synthetic oil plant which is still working— it is a place called Z e itz. Aftei Bomber Comm and had attacked Z e itz on 16th January last the experts said it could notwork again for several months. Frankly after looking at the photographs I was convinced it could never work again .Not only was practically every building shattered but the whole area o f the plant was plastered and pitted with bomb craters. Yet that plant was producing a quarter o fits old output again six weeks after the attack. The Germans had found certain parts o f the plant which were not beyond repair they brou gh tin machinery salvaged from other destroyed plants. They patched and they mended and somehow they got a quarter o f the essen­tial elements o f the plant working again .But that would not have done the job by itself for the whole complicated system o foil and steam pressure pipes which cover these synthetic oil plants was utterly shattered. So they linked the whole plant up again with temporary flexible hoses— they look like fire hoses and pumped the oil and steam through them .That is 781 just one instance o f their enormous capacity to repair, and so o f the necessity to bom band re-bom b them out o f existence. Z e itz as a m attei o f fact has been attended to again —this is the fifth time by the 8th American Air Force. It is the same story with their Trailways. ru ewe finally got the railways o f the Ruhr down and out, but only after every main centre had been bombed not once but again and again and after the two great canals the D ortm und-E m sand theM ittella n d had been breached and repaired and breached again ten separate times since last September and after every key railway bridge and viaduct had been smashed in some cases with the new ten-ton deep penetiation bombs. What I am em phasising is that anyone who is tempted for a moment to think our bombing may have been overdone— or even a bit barb arou sand inhuman— should remember that it has taken all this and m onto weaken Germany to the point of collapse. In spite o fall this the allied armies have had no walk-ovei either in the East or the West until the last few days at any rate. T lr-y have had to fight bitterly for everyone o f their victories. W e may judge from that what the cost in blood would have been if w e had not bombed Germany relentlessly. The truth is that the Nazis have been the most form id­ able enemies which we have ever faced in our history :enemies with exceptional powers o f resistance and re­covery vicious and dangerous enemies spitting then V-bom bs and their rockets at us to the last minute o f the last hour. The Nazis have carried of!' no less than thirteen
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