Invasion maps of Britain and the USA - successful and rebuffed

Maps have a special place in the hearts of men. Maybe I’m generalising here – actually, there’s no maybe about it – but maps do something that males appreciate: they take facts, fears and desires, and put them in an easily digestible – fuck it, I’m going to say “bite-size” – format. They’re the geopolitical equivalent of tidying your desk at work or putting your collection of football programmes in a chronological pile.

After a good look around the internet, I – OK, it was actually the people at this website – these brilliant invasion maps. The first two are focused on Britain. Map 1 (above) charts every place where foreign armies have landed in the British Isles since 1066, when Viking yob-turned-garlic-eating French nobleman pitched up at Hastings with his band of flick-comb-carrying psychopaths and gave King Harold the ultimate cataract operation. Not only have the likes of the Spanish, French and assorted Scandis had a go, but even pretender-to-the-throne Perkin Warbeck. Boss name, is Perkin, by the way – but no-one’s following you into battle with a tag like that.

The second map (above) is more recent, and it has to be pointed out, a little more serious. Originally published in the Illustrated London News of 1940, it shows just how vulnerable the country was from Germany at the the time of Dunkirk. People really believed that occupation was a mere formality, though it’s only because of the bravery and fortitude of the RAF that the enemy was kept back.

Finally, the last set of maps – a selection from Life magazine in 1942. Showing possible invasion routes into the USA, it’s certainly thorough in its anticipation of the coming apocalypse. And, though it no doubt frightened the life out of everyone who read it, you can bet your life the blokes who drew it were having the time of their lives. Every cloud and that.

More on these maps from this essential website


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