Joyanna Adams

Nobody's Opinion

Nobody Remembers: 150 Years of Bravery and Sacrifice

Nobody’s Opinion

Today: on our 150th Memorial Day, we remember the millions of men who gave their lives for America, so, I wanted to post a description of D-Day, written by David Eisenhower, Eisenhower’s grandson. A book I’m reading now.

The book is called Eisenhower at War 1943-1945. (Naturally)

Not many people know that D-Day almost was a big failure. So much was going against the biggest operation of the troops landing on OMAHA Beach. But, as always, the sheer courage of just a few determined men, turned the tide, and that was the start of the end for the Germans.

Saving Private Ryan, brought D-Day to the big screen…but here are a few more details left out of the movie:

The supreme test of the D-Day landings came at OMAHA Beach, where the troubles had begun well before H-Hour. Uncertain that naval and air bombardment could reduce the heavy coastal artillery batteries in the area, Bradley had ordered the disembarkation of the 1st and 4th divisions into assault craft eleven miles offshore in choppy seas. As H-Hour approached, the assault forces of the 1st and 29th divisions, showered by sea spray and buffeted by rough seas, were chilled and exhausted. In three -to six-foot seas that swamped the assault boats ferrying the anti-tank guns and jeeps, one battalion of DDE tanks did not attempt to launch. Of the twenty-nine DDs launched in the other battalion, twenty-two sank in the four-foot seas with crews aboard, and five others were destroyed by beach fire.

Meanwhile, low cloud cover had prevented effective naval bombardment. Air operations were also ineffective because of the poor visibility and skillful concealment of enemy positions. Planes had to fly under the clouds as low as 2,000 feet and up to 7,000 feet, with another solid layer about that: Low flying pilots could not see shore until a few minutes before crossing it and braved dangerous congestion in the area. Once bombs had been dropped, there was no time for the pilots to see if targets had been hit, and soon the whole shoreline was obscured by smoke.

06 Jun 1944, Normandy, France — On D-Day, June 6, 1944, a landing craft just vacated by invasion troops points towards a fortified beach on the Normandy Coast. American soldiers wade to shore fighting heavy machine gun fire. — Image by © CORBIS

 

According to the many accounts of the battle, for seven hours the battle at OMAHA was touch and go. Severe shore-battery fire showered the assault during the last half mile before touchdown. A direct hit sank one landing craft in the leading company, a second foundered. The rest went aground on a sandbar several years from the seawall. The 116th waded under heavy fire in five feet of water past the dead dying. One by one, the survivors darted over the open beach to the seawall, the only defense against the fire: many of those who could not make a decision to cross the open space of beach met death at the water’s edge.

In the first half hour, hundreds died in the sea or on the beach. The rest clung behind the tanks on the beach or dug in. The noise at OMAHA that morning was said to be so terrible that most could not think or function beyond heeding their instinct to run or hide. For a while it seemed that everything had gone wrong: the air bombardment had missed its targets, the naval shelling had had little effect: most of the DD tanks were lost at sea or destroyed on the beach: the infantry were scattered and badly weakened: the vital demolition crews had been decimated and were unable to clear the beach: the presence of the German 352 division had been unexpected.

The report of what appeared to be a disaster came to Bradley. The second, third and fourth assault waves were stacked up behind the first. OMAHA Beach was a scene of disorganization, with most of the troops pinned behind obstacles under enemy fire, surrounded by flaming vehicles, dead and wounded. Hansen could report no progress in scaling the bluffs between the strongpoint where just about then a handful of men under makeshift leadership. Braving enemy fire and mine fields, they had started up the relatively undefended slopes. Indeed, the many accounts of OMAHA would tell of the countless instances of courage under fire, which gradually turned the tide sometime after 11 A.M.

So, just a handful of men, changed the course of the fight.

Saving Private Ryan told the story of OMAHA. The latest war movie, 12 Strong, also tell how a handful of men defeated the Taliban after 9/11.

And nobody knew about it until now. (Add that movie to your list.)

We need MORE movies like this. The liberals be damned.

 

 

May 27, 2018 - Posted by | American History | , ,

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