Strongly fortified shelter or room complex in reinforced concrete construction, executed underground as a deep bunker.
Example cover picture: Fort Schoenenbourg, Maginot Line Alsace (FR)

Bunker construction continued to develop rapidly during the First World War. The enormous penetration power of the weapons entails to the reinforcement of the walls and ceilings of the buildings. But even up to 10 meters thick ceilings offered no absolute protection. Only the most perfect camouflage should guarantee a certain security.

Military bunkers and positions

The attack of the German Wehrmacht on numerous European countries was followed by the gradual implementation of various bunker buildings. Military leadership bunkers and defensive buildings on one side and bunker quarters or bunker systems - like the Wolfsschanze - for the political and administrative leadership of the country.

Civil air defense systems

The Allied air force attacks on Germany in the autumn of 1940 led to the implementation of the so-called F√ľhrer's immediate program, which included nearly 60 cities with more than 100,000 inhabitants. As part of this program, more than 3,000 civilian bunkers were built throughout Germany in areas particularly affected by air strikes.

Armor bunker

For the important replenishment of the war machine, huge amounts of military equipment and supplies became necessary in the course of the Second World War. The Allied attack on the German armaments industry gives rise to not only the decentralization of armaments production, but also relocated entire factories underground and into bunkered armament installations.

Especially with the advent of the nuclear age and the escalation of the superpowers in the form of the Cold War, extensive bunker complexes were built on both sides of the Iron Curtain.

In addition to the pure military buildings, the protection of the civilian population was increasingly in the focus, as with the constant development of the missile weapons an entire state territory could have been attacked at any time and without much advance warning. However, at no time was the protection of the entire population guaranteed. Moreover, the protective factor of the military bunkers and the administrative and political leadership always lagged behind the development of weapons. Even if it was suggested, absolute security was never given.

Military bunker

Civil Defense Facilities

Government bunker

The modern weapons technology meanwhile also allows the destruction of underground structures, so that the highlight of the bunker construction is in the history. Today, these monuments are exciting destinations. Many of them can be visited.