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In 1942 General Eisenhower, Supreme Allied Commander, had warned Germany
to, “Beware the fury of an aroused democracy.” On D-Day, June 6, 1944, the Allies
mounted the largest amphibious assault in history and redeemed Eisenhower’s warning.
The invasion force consisted of more than 5,000 ships, 1,200 warships and 13,000
airplanes. Some 90,000 U.S., British, Canadian, and free French troops landed on the
beaches of Normandy while about 20,000 more came by parachute or glider. The
Invasion had been in preparation for a year. Over 55,000 brave American soldiers
stormed the beaches of Normandy, an appalling 2,700 Americans had took their last steps
of life defending their country, their world, and everything they stood for.
D-Day, planned by the Russians, Americans, and British insisted that the United
States help with the advancement on France (Atlantic front). British and Canadian forces
would also combine in the cross-channel invasion. Simultaneously in Eastern Europe
(eastern front) the Soviets would battle while the Americans, the British, and the Canadian
forces would attack a stretch of beaches along the French coast. The U.S. would attack a
part of Normandy code named Omaha and Utah beaches. These were two code names for
these particular sectors of the invasion front.
Around a year before D-Day, Hitler had gained and occupied Western Europe and
parts of Russia during it’s blitzkrieg crusade throughout 1939-41. Adolf Hitler, the Nazi
leader of Germany, had also acquired control of the North African coast. Without
intervention from the Western Allies, Hitler would reign Europe for years to come.
Subsequently while Russians were engaged in the war, Joseph Stalin, the Soviet
leader, had wanted the Allies to join and proceed to make a “second front” along Western
Europe. In 1942 this idea was virtually impossible for the United States because we
were still forming an army. The materials needed to have such an invasion were not yet
built to cross the English Channel. Meanwhile in the1940’s campaign, when the British
were battling in Dunkirk, France, the British had to withdraw forces from being
massacred by Hitler’s army. During this confrontation Hitler had declared war on the
United States on December 11, 1941 just after Pearl Harbor was bombed by the Japanese
Roosevelt first stated that “Germany is priority first.” This was agreed in
Argentia, Newfoundland in August of 1941. Eisenhower, U.S. general, proposed an
attack in 1943 named (Operation “Roundup”) and another called (Operation
“Sledgehammer”), these would be used in the event of the Soviets collapsing or the
weakening of Germany. Both plans were presented in London, England and Roundup
was adopted. The British always had a second plan because of objective doubts. The
Anglo-American conferences were held in Washington and London. At first Americans
were told of the facts and were persuaded to agree on operation Sledgehammer which
was the landing on North Africa and the principal operation of 1942. Forces were
postponed for the invasion through Sicily and through the Italian mainland, in which it
delayed preparations for the cross-Channel invasion of 1943. The postponements were
due to Allied conferences at Washington (Trident, May 1943), Quebec (Quadrant, August
1943), Cairo (Sextant, November 1943), and Tehran (Eureka, November-December
1943). At the last Meeting Roosevelt and Stalin convinced Churchill to insist on the
invasion in May of 1944 as a fixed date for an invasion. The decision at Tehran was the
final sign that America would be apart of the Channel-crossing invasion. The British had
in fact been proceeding with structural plans, by Lieutenant General Fredrick Morgan who
has been named COSSAC (chief of staff to the supreme Allied commander) at the
Anglo-American Casablanca Conference in January 1943. The site of the operation
“Overlord” was Normandy, between Caed and the Cotentin Peninsula, France in a
strength of three divisions, with two brigades to be air-dropped. Another 11 divisions
were to land on two artificial harbors that would be towed across the Channel. Once a
foothold had been established, 100 division of forces would be brought in to France and
then assemble a major task force to attack Germany.
Hitler had known about the Anglo-American Allied conferences and knew their
would soon be an invasion across the Channel. Hitler could no longer ignore the western
front because the Americans had become involved in WWW II. Hitler had appointed Field
Marshall Erwin Rommel, former African commander, as the inspector the Atlantic front.
He fortified the English Channel coast.
January 1944 the Allies named a new invasion leader Bernard Montgomery.
Montgomery was Rommel’s opponent in North Africa. Montgomery under Eisenhower
was a ground commander for the
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Operation Overlord, Operation Neptune, France, Military history of Canada during World War II, Battle for Caen, Normandy landings, Utah Beach, Atlantic Wall, Erwin Rommel, Sword Beach, Invasion of Normandy
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