The Normandy Landings

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The Normandy Landings In 1943 many allied conferences were held. The conferences started with the Casablanca conference in January of that year. All these meetings were preparing for operation "Overlord," which was to be an invasion of France. This year had brought many victories for the allies- victories in the Pacific, Sicily, North Africa and Italy. The fall of Mussolini, aerial assaults on Germany, Red army advance and an end to the German Submarine menace at Sea. This was all building up for the allies and "Overlord" was the next step.

A million and half men were to be trained and equipped, transported and maintained in Britain. The flow of material in 1943 from the States to Britain had reached 753,000 tons a month and this would only increase as the landings took place. The European coastline from Norway to Spain could not have been defended in strength throughout some 2,500 miles.

With the choice to freedom strike wherever desired the choice for Normandy was decided to be the landing spot.

Hitler appointed Rundstedt to the supreme command in the west and under him he placed two army groups led by Rommel, and Marshal Blaskowitz. Hitler relied on his insight and expected the allied attempt to be made at Normandy- to his advantage he was right.

On June 6, British and American and American airborne divisions were dropped on both sides of the assault area to be ready in case of counterattack. A fleet of 4,000 vessels of all kinds came together on the Normandy beaches. On the first day 130,000 men and 20,000 vehicles were landed.

By July 1944, less than one month after D-day an allied army of almost a million men had been landed in Normandy, composed of 13 American, 11 British and 1 Canadian divisions. The situation seemed to be in control for the allies, though there was extreme loses of men on both sides. Operation Overlord (Normandy Invasion) was the biggest turning point in the war; it unified the armies of the allies and literally carpeted a way to victory. This was the test of true valiant bravery and in the end, Hitler killed himself and we, the allies, came out the victors. An American general who was a large part of the Normandy landings sums up the will of people when in war by saying: "Bravery is the capacity to perform properly even when scared half to death." -Gen. Omar Bradley (