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Some People Have The View That The Events Of Dunkirk In 1940 Deserve To Be Remembered As A Triumph For Britain And Its People. How Far Do These Sources Support Or Contradict This Interpretation

1778 words - 8 pages

Some people have the view that the events of Dunkirk in 1940 deserve to be remembered as a triumph for Britain and its people. How far do these sources support or contradict this interpretation

Dunkirk was an important event during WWll. By 10th May 1940 the German troops had advanced through the parts of France and had advanced the beaches and ports of Dunkirk causing the Allies to retreat and to be trapped. Due to hesitation Hitler did not order the Germans to attack. This allowed Operation Dynamo to take place. This gave the Allies 10 days to be evacuated back to Britain. A variety of boats and ships, which were mostly privately owned, allowed the evacuation to take place. This meant ...view middle of the document...

The author is to be trusted because it is firstly written by a teacher who would have the right qualifications and understanding of the topic to produce this type of source. It is also designed to be a GCSE textbook suggesting that this source is reliable and accurate enough. It is also written many years after the event, which has the benefit of hindsight to make a fair judgment by collating many other sources from at the event, after the event and from both points of views and coming to this conclusion.

Source B4 is an oil painting. It is showing how thousands of soldiers were being rescued from many different sizes of boats evacuating these soldiers. The painting also shows a large cloud of smoke drifting in the opposite direction suggesting that the soldiers have won the battle and are returning safely back to Britain. In the top right corner of the photo there is an RAF plane coming form the direction of Britain representing the strength of the RAF and its success. This source lacks specific detail in explaining the number of people rescued and why the RAF was such a success. The artist of this source was hired to produce this to the government making it a source of propaganda. Therefore it is very likely that many negative aspects suggesting that it was failure would have not been included in this source. Cundall would have produced this source by strict instructions from government officials; meaning that this source was carefully controlled by the government and the artist to achieve its purpose in providing the public with evidence of how Dunkirk was a success. The predicament is that since it is a painting, like a photograph, it only shows the events at that exact moment and time, not a second before or after. It also showing one of the many beaches of Dunkirk, there could have been a completely different scenario on the other beaches. Furthermore this source was created to persuade the people on the Home Front that the battle was a triumph increasing morale. The source was also made at the time of the event, which provides historians of what the event was like.

Source B5 is a newspaper article from The Daily Express, which supports this interpretation. This source explains that there was an armada of ships and which were different shapes and sizes that helped contribute to the evacuation. It also explains the success of the Royal Air Force. However this source doesn’t explain exactly how many soldiers were rescued from this evacuation. The source also states that a few of the ammunition were abandoned but this was far from it. In reality 64,000 vehicles were left behind compared to what the source states of only some auxiliary craft were the cost to the navy. This may have been because it was made at the time of war where there was little freedom of press and a large emphasis on censorship from the government. The government used the MOI (Ministry of Information) as an effective way of controlling what was going into the media....

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