Battle Damage: Munich

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WW2 Battle Damage, Munich
WW2 Battle Damage, Munich

When you explore Second World War sites across Europe you look at the landscape differently from other visitors: you always have one eye out for visible traces of conflict. In cities this means looking for buildings damaged and repaired or which still bear the scars of war: battle damage.

WW2 battle scars in Munich
WW2 battle scars in Munich

Munich was at the spiritual heartland of the Third Reich: it was where Hitler had first stood on a beer-hall stage and declared his beliefs, where he had taken part in the 1923 Putsch which led to his arrest and imprisonment, was where the Headquarters of the Nazi Party was located and was where he humiliated the British government in 1938 with the Munich Agreement.

While there had been more than seventy air raids on Munich, causing much damage, there was even more in April 1945 during the battle for the city as American troops fought their way here from the Rhineland. The Americans then occupied the city and destroyed some of the key Nazi buildings and memorials. Walking across the city there is many signs of battle damage and new buildings replacing those lost in bombing.

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