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Date Posted: 04:52:41 03/03/05 Thu
Author: Chris
Subject: Re: Cologne
In reply to: Chris 's message, "Re: Cologne" on 04:43:41 03/03/05 Thu

By the way, one way to cope with the horror in this time for Germans was to secretly tell jokes about the Nazi regime. But it was very dangerous, you could be put in prison or killed for telling such jokes. For example:

"Wie sieht Weihnachten 1944 aus?"
"Es regnet Christbäume vom Himmel, die Flak liefert Kugeln, Goebbels erzählt Märchen, das deutsche Volk zündet Kerzen im Keller an und erwartet die Bescherung von oben."

"How does Christmas 1944 look like"?
"It's raining Christmas trees from heaven, the flak provides the globes (the German word for bullets and globes as decorative element on Christmas trees is the same), Goebbels tells us fairy tales, the German people are lighting candels in the basement, and are awaiting the "Bescherung" (untranslatable, can mean the time of gift sharing at Christmas, but also a "nice mess")."

The "Christmas trees" are also a part of the answer how the British were able to make direct hits in the night so well.

Quote from the Internet:

First aircraft (pathfinders) dropped the target indicator flares ("Christmas trees"), to which the rest of the first wave of bombers aimed their bombs – first high explosive bombs and then incendiaries.

This resulted in large-scale fires, which quickly spread, giving rise to the firestorm (Feuersturm) phenomenon (see Middlebrook 1984), exceeding the capacity of firefighting and the water supplies. ...

After the first wave was over, another wave followed a few hours later. This time no target indicators were used, but more bombs were dropped in the burning town, to cause even more destruction.

These target indicator flares hovered very slowly down and were blinking in all colors, red, green, white. They really looked like Christmas trees. But they indicated that something horrible would follow soon.

Here is a recent BBCNews article about the Dresden bombing

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  • Re: Cologne -- TONY LANG, 05:51:23 03/06/05 Sun

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