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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

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Came across an odd but quite interesting short film on youtube.

An IWM film of the bombing of London 1917. A soldier is seen throughout the film appearing at various times and holding a placard-type banner with 'September 26 1917' written on it.

I've no idea of any significance of that particular date, (?) unless it was just to record the date of the filming.

Some of the damage of the September London bombing raids is shown, but the film is probably more interesting because of the scenes of everyday busy London life during that time.


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Interesting piece of film. The date is significant in that it was days after a mass raid by twelve Zeppelins of the German Navy (one, L32, was shot down over Potters Bar). I reckon, from the captions, that the film was made to counter untruthful German propaganda on the success of the raid which must have claimed destruction of well known London Landmarks communication centres & munitions factories (Hence 'Ficcion' - Fiction & Verdada - truth in the opening captions). Shots of wrecked houses and restaurants must have been included to show that the 'devilish Hun' weren't attacking strategic & industrial sites as claimed, but the man on the street. The date must have have been included - in the same way that a current newspaper is shown with a hostage by kidnappers - to establish that it wasn't archive footage from before the attack.


Edit: I believe L33 was also shot down during this raid

Edited by NigelS
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Yes of course, that must be it Nigel. Propaganda is something I must admit I hadn't thought of but I can see it now. 'Look at us, London life as usual' and no-one can dispute the date of the filming as the placard bearing soldier frequently emerges from the crowd, all going about their daily business with the landmarks and traffic behind. Ingenious!

Although I can't read all the wording in the captions that keep appearing, the headings translate as 'The Fiction' then 'The Truth'

I've added a 'propaganda film' tag

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