Wednesday, June 6, 2007

June 6, 1944(D- Day) - The Battle of Normandy

The build-up of Omaha Beach: reinforcements of men and equipment moving inland.

The Battle of Normandy was fought in 1944 between Nazi Germany in Western Europe and the invading Allied forces as part of the larger conflict of World War II.

You can correlate better if I talk about the 1998 Academy-Award-winning film Saving Private Ryan directed by Steven Spielberg. The opening 25 minutes of the film depicts the Omaha beachhead assault of June 6, 1944. Now you can imagine how the D-day would have been!!
(P.S: By any chance if you have not seen Saving Private Ryan, get a DVD today and watch it without delay. 'cause you have missed a gem of a movie and a piece in world history)

Operation Overlord was the codename for the Allied invasion of northwest Europe, which began on June 6, 1944, and ended on August 19, 1944, when the Allies crossed the River Seine. Over sixty years later, the Normandy invasion still remains the largest sea borne invasion in history, involving almost three million troops crossing the English Channel from England to Normandy.
Its mission, to gain a foothold on the continent, started on June 6, 1944 (most commonly known by the name D-Day) and ended on June 30, 1944.

The primary Allied formations that saw combat in Normandy came from the United States of America, United Kingdom and Canada. Substantial Free French and Polish forces also participated in the battle after the assault phase, and there were also contingents from Belgium, Czechoslovakia, Greece, the Netherlands, and Norway.

The Normandy invasion began with overnight parachute and glider landings, massive air attacks, naval bombardments, and an early morning amphibious phase began on June 6. The “D-Day” forces deployed from bases along the south coast of England, the most important of these being Portsmouth. The battle for Normandy continued for more than two months, with campaigns to establish, expand, and eventually break out of the Allied beachheads, and concluded with the liberation of Paris and the fall of the Falaise pocket in late August 1944.

The Normandy landings were the first successful opposed landings across the English Channel for nine centuries. They were costly in terms of men, but the defeat inflicted on the Germans was one of the largest of the war. Strategically, the campaign led to the loss of the German position in most of France and the secure establishment of a major new front.

Till date Battle of Normandy was depicted in many movies such as The Longest Day, Saving Private Ryan, D-Day, the Sixth of June and also in the famous TV show Band of Brothers. Even today the Omaha Beach invasion is dramatised in Computer Games such as Call of Duty, Company of Heroes and Commandos 3: Destination Berlin.

Complete information on Battle of Normandy @