Colour photographs of the aftermath of The Blitz in London, 1940.
Between 7 September 1940 and 16 May 1941 there were major raids on sixteen British cities. London was bombed by the Luftwaffe for 57 consecutive nights.In comparison to the Allied bombing campaign against Germany, the Blitz resulted in relatively few casualties; the British bombing of Hamburg alone inflicted about 42,000 civilian casualties.
The bombing did not achieve its intended goals of demoralising the British into surrender or significantly damaging their war economy. It also failed to facilitate Operation Sea Lion, the planned German invasion of Britain. By May 1941 the threat of an invasion of Britain had passed, and Hitler’s attention had turned to Operation Barbarossa in the East.
Several reasons have been suggested for the failure of the German air offensive. The Luftwaffe High Command failed to develop a coherent long-term strategy for destroying Britain’s war industries, frequently switching from bombing one type of industry to another without exerting any sustained pressure on any one of them. Neither was the Luftwaffe equipped to carry out a long-term strategic air campaign; it was not armed in depth, and its intelligence on British industry and capabilities was poor. All of these shortcomings denied the Luftwaffe the ability to make a strategic difference.
(via retronaut; photographs by William Vandivert)