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German opposition to Bomber Command memorial an insult
UKIP MEP Mike Nattrass has expressed his anger over a German bid to scrap a memorial to Bomber Command and the tens of thousands that lost their lives fighting for King and country.
The West Midlands MEP, whose father was an RAF WWII Lancaster pilot, says efforts by German politicians to stop a memorial being erected in central London are an insult to the brave 55,000 bomber aircrew killed in World War Two.
Veterans have this week expressed their disgust over the stance of the Bild newspaper which has ran with an headline in English staying ‘Please Say No’ and efforts in Germany to stop the installation of the monument in London’s Green Park.
Mr Nattrass said: “As the MEP covering the Coventry area, which was devastated by German bombing, I am appalled that some German politicians and the Bild newspaper is actively campaigning and calling for the monument to be scrapped.
“How dare they. Many people in Bomber Command lost their lives to defend this country. At the end of the day they bombed us and we bombed them.
“To Quote Arthur ‘Bomber’ Harris, who was in charge of RAF bomber command:
“The Nazis entered this war under the rather childish delusion that they were going to bomb everyone else, and nobody was going to bomb them. At Rotterdam, London, Warsaw, and half a hundred other places, they put their rather naive theory into operation. They sowed the wind, and now they are going to reap the whirlwind.”
“Indeed, the devastation of Coventry, within my constituency, led to the German’s creating the word ‘Coventrate’ meaning to devastate sections of a city by concentrated bombing. The Germans called for ‘Total War’ and they received the final dividend that is now history.
“It is nothing short of a national disgrace that there is no monument to Bomber Command and I join veterans in calling for this disgrace to end.
“Many brave airmen made the ultimate sacrifice to defend this country. It is also a fact that Bomber Harris was the only Chief of Staff not to get his honours at the end of the war. That was an insult to all who served in Bomber Command,” he added.
A spokesman for the Bomber Command Memorial Appeal states on the appeal website: “The collective role of RAF Bomber Command in freeing Europe from Hitler’s tyrannical rule has never been publicly recognised.
“RAF Bomber Command suffered the greatest percentage of casualties, accounting for 10 per cent of all fatalities in WWII.
“The RAF Bomber Command Memorial will serve as a reminder of the lives that were lost, and as a place for family members to remember loved ones, some of whom have never had a formal place of rest.”
For further information call Craig Winyard, Media & Communications manager for Mike Nattrass MEP on 0121 333 7737 or 07881 660941.