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How useful are sources A, B, and C in understanding what the battle of Dunkirk was like?

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Introduction

How useful are sources A, B, and C in understanding what the battle of Dunkirk was like? The evacuation of Dunkirk in WW2 will always be seen differently as either disaster, success or both. At the time of the evacuation many people had their own opinions of what happened, from seamen to commanders to news reporters. In source A Commander Thomas Kerr clearly thought the evacuation was far from a success. His disapproval of the operation and the army's conduct may have been down to the fact that he himself was part of the navy. He may have wanted to put down the army to make the navy seem better in comparison because of the rivalry between the forces. This makes source A slightly unreliable because of his motives. ...read more.

Middle

Also being a commander he would have been able to have a good overview of the battle, so probably could see everything he said which makes this source a little more reliable. Bill Elmslie in source B does not give a clear view if he believes that the evacuation succeeded or not, yet he does give across the view that the manner of the evacuation and the situation on the beaches were chaotic. He uses verbs like, "hammering, hurtling and streaking", to show that the settings were very frantic which I can believe is a reliable description of the beaches at times. Yet something which makes the source seem peculiar is the phrase, "His machine guns cutting through those columns of soldiers like a reaper slicing through corn". ...read more.

Conclusion

I find this very hard to believe and I think that what this Cornish seaman has said is just a story he has either made up or over praised so he can show off to the people back home about the bravery in the British army. He may have also been told to say this by a higher figure to show that navy men have respect for the army, so overall I think this source is unreliable. In conclusion I did not find any outstanding reliable source because they all had faults within them, yet I would say that source A is the most reliable. I'd say this because the quote is from a figure with authority, who should be trusted and honest. His account seems a lot more plausible than the other twos and he had the advantage of having an overview of the whole battle. Richard Flanagan ...read more.

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