Saturday, June 6, 2009

D-Day - 6 June 1944

Landing on the Beach
Today is the 65th anniversary of D-Day, the Allied invasion of Normandy, France during World War II. On this date in 1944 British, American and Canadian army divisions landed on the beaches of Normandy and airborne forces dropped from the skies or landed in glider transports in the countryside. Although German forces knew the invasion was coming, tactical and strategic surprise was achieved.

The German high command delayed their efforts to throw back the invaders into the sea for fear this landing was a ruse with the real invasion coming later to attack the port of Calais. (Calais is only 21 miles from England versus the 110 miles to Normandy). The delay allowed the Allies to gain their foothold on the continent and to ultimately achieve their goal of liberating occupied France and then invade the German homeland. The successful landings at Normandy were the beginning of the defeat of Hitler and the German armies in Western Europe.

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