Copyright Canadian War Museum (CN 83190).

Battle for Britain, by John P. Cuthbert.

A giant John Bull is depicted standing on the shores of Great Britain and defending his land against the aerial onslaught of the Luftwaffe.

Early in the war Germany attempted to defeat Britain in two ways. One was an air war, the Battle of Britain, which was to establish air superiority over Britain and destroy industrial, military, and transportation targets in and around major urban centres. The other was a naval war, the Battle of the Atlantic, aimed at starving Britain of critical supplies by destroying convoys of merchant vessels crossing the North Atlantic from North America.

Battle of Britain

In what was described as “their finest hour”, the RAF’s Fighter Command blocked the German Air Force attempt to gain air superiority prior to an invasion of Britain. Mass bombing raids on British cities caused much destruction and loss of life, but British morale was not broken.

Battle of the Atlantic

In an attempt to starve Britain of critical supplies, the German navy launched a campaign of submarine warfare against Allied naval convoys in the North Atlantic. The Canadian navy played a crucial role in escorting convoys through these treacherous waters.

 

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