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Title:SCENES OF DEVASTATION IN THE BRITISH, AMERICAN AND FRENCH ZONES OF OCCUPATION, GERMANY [Allocated Title]
Film Number:MGH 6769
Other titles:AMATEUR FILM BY HAROLD P MURDOCH [Alternative Title]
Summary: Amateur film, with handwritten titles, shot by Mr Harold Murdoch, a member (given the rank of Colonel) of a British Intelligence Objectives Sub-Committee trip (No 2108) through the western parts of Occupied Germany, starts by surveying German bomb damage to central London, then records the effect of the Allied air offensive against Germany, travelling from Frankfurt am Main, via Stuttgart, Siegfried Line defences, Karlsruhe, Baden-Baden and Kaiserslautern and ending in the British Zone visiting Herford (Münsterkirche), Cologne (Cathedral and Freeman Baillie Bridge) and Bad Oeynhausen. Murdoch records the fate of the German civilian population and early signs of the incipient americanisation of the German landscape (Goof Off Inn), as well as the presence of American 'negro' drivers.
Technical Details: Format: 16mm
Running time: 11 mins
Notes: Summary: the mission of BIOS 2108 is not known, although it may have been to research German chemical or agricultural developments. Murdoch's team starts their tour by staying at Höchst, part of the IG Farben conglomerate, though his remark that the "AG Faben" buildings shown were used for the manufacture of chemicals for medical supplies ---- [and] were not damaged by the Allies as they were required for the welfare of the German civilian" is an odd assessment of a company so closely linked to Nazi war crimes.
H P Murdoch's biography is unknown, ditto the reason for his partcipation in this BIOS trip. Based on his detailed filming of the Singer Sewing Machine building in London, it is possible that he may have been H P Murdoch who was Manager, Personnel Division of Singer Manufacturing Co. Ltd, Clydebank.