The Great Debate UK
- Nick Hewitt is a historian in the Department of Research and Information at the Imperial War Museum in London. He studied history at Lancaster University and War Studies at King’s College, University of London, where he specialised in naval history. He joined the Imperial War Museum in 1995. The opinions expresed are his own.-
“D-Day at last! Invasion! Hurrah! God save the King!” wrote a Cheshire schoolgirl on the evening of 6 June 1944. For her, news of the successful D-Day landings clearly meant a great deal. But looking back after sixty-five years, what was the historical significance of D-Day?
In purely military terms, it is almost impossible to exaggerate the importance of this extraordinary operation. Operation “Overlord” was the result of four years of hard-won experience, painstakingly acquired from the early commando raids, and then from amphibious operations of steadily increasing scale and complexity in the Mediterranean. By June 1944, the Allied sea, air and land forces were at a peak of efficiency and strength, but it had been a long, hard road.
“Overlord” was probably the most ambitious military operation in history. It involved putting ashore on one day around 133,000 men and as many as 10,000 vehicles along 50 miles of defended coastline, from more than 4,000 landing craft. A wealth of ingenious equipment had been developed, from new helmets, to swimming tanks and the “Mulberry” artificial harbours.
Arcandor’s chief Executive Karl-Gerhard Eick has warned that if his department store group is forced into insolvency, it will do to the retail sector what the collapse of Lehman Brothers did to finance. It is hard to know whether Eick really believes this, although one has to hope he does not.
A revisionist theory on the causes of the global financial crisis blames surplus countries like China, Japan and Germany as much as highly-leveraged, deregulated finance in the United States and Britain.
Germany is becalmed by a political and economic phoney war five months before this year’s most important European general election. But a lack of real economic debate now risks prolonging the political stalemate and delaying much needed reforms.
LONDON/PARIS, April 23 (Reuters) – Germany is to set up a system of bad banks before the summer recess to hold some 250 billion euros of toxic assets. Finance Minister Peer Steinbruek has assured taxpayers that his solution — called “eine Bad Bank” (there is no German word for the concept) — will not weigh on the budget.
from The Great Debate:
The United States is fighting a fire in the world economy, but Germany and some other European countries fear a flood of inflation as a result.
That clash of cultures is at the heart of transatlantic debate over whether Europe should spend more and ease monetary policy to revive growth, with a deep economic contraction certain this year and an end to the recession not yet in sight.