D-Day 2016 *Open Thread*

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The Western Allies of World War II launched the largest amphibious invasion in history when they assaulted Normandy, located on the northern coast of France, on 6 June 1944. The invaders were able to establish a beachhead as part of Operation Overlord after a successful “D-Day,” the first day of the invasion.

To get a sense of how great a sacrifice the U.S. made 72 years-ago when the Allies stormed the beaches of Normandy, consider this tragic arithmetic: That battle cost 29,000 American lives.

By contrast, a little over 4,800 U.S. soldiers were killed in combat during the entire war in Iraq.

D-Day was the largest naval, air and land operation in history

The scene on Omaha beach after the initial landings on 6 June 1944.

The five beaches selected for the landings are known by their code names. The two American beaches, Utah and Omaha. The two British Beaches, Sword and Gold , and the Canadian Beach, Juno.

The primary objective at Omaha was to secure a beachhead of some eight kilometres (5 miles) depth, between Port-en-Bessin and the Vire River, linking with the British landings at Gold to the east, and reaching the area of Isigny to the west to link up with VII Corps landing at Utah.

 

D-Day required unprecedented cooperation between international armed forces. The Supreme Headquarters Allied Expeditionary Force (SHAEF) was an international coalition and although the Allies were united against Germany, the military leadership responsible for ‘Overlord’ had to overcome political, cultural and personal tensions.

By 1944, over 2 million troops from over 12 countries were in Britain in preparation for the invasion. On D-Day, Allied forces consisted primarily of American, British and Canadian troops but also included Australian, Belgian, Czech, Dutch, French, Greek, New Zealand, Norwegian, Rhodesian and Polish naval, air or ground support.

Here are some more “facts” about D-Day you might find interesting:

The date June 5, 1944, was originally chosen for the invasion, but bad weather forced the Allies to postpone a day.
More than 13,000 aircraft and 5,000 ships supported the operation.

 Lieutenant James Doohan of the Winnipeg Rifles was shot in the hand and chest on D-Day. A silver cigarette case stopped the bullet to the chest, but the shot to his hand caused him to lose a finger. Doohan later became known to generations of TV viewers as the actor who played Scottie in Star Trek. While on camera, he always tried to hide his injured hand.

In a broadcast message to troops before they leave, Eisenhower tells them, “The tide has turned! The free men of the world are marching together to victory…. We will accept nothing less than full victory!”

The oldest soldier to storm the beaches at Normandy in the first wave of troops was Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., the fifty-six year old son of U.S. President Teddy Roosevelt. Roosevelt also happened to be the only general in the first wave and the only soldier to serve with his son at Normandy.

The Land Craft Vehicle Personnel Ships used during D-Day to land soldiers on the beaches were originally designed for use in Louisiana swamps where the flat bottom of the boat prevented it from getting caught in shallow waters. Designed by lumber businessman and former Nebraska National Guard Infantry Officer Andrew Higgins, the shallow boat went for several years without attracting much attention from the U.S. government until World War II. Higgins’s company ultimately produced over 20,000 of the boats for the United States during the war.

Celebrated war photographer Robert Capa was in the second wave of troops to land at Omaha Beach. His pictures of the event are known as The Magnificent Eleven – a title that reflects their number. Despite taking two reels of film, totalling 106 pictures, only 11 survived after 16-year-old darkroom assistant Dennis Banks dried them at too high a temperature.

Lord Lovat led the British 1st Special Service Brigade. An inspiring but eccentric figure, he landed on Sword Beach wearing hunting brogues and carrying a wading stick used for salmon fishing.

Links to where I found the facts:

http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/03/world/europe/d-day-fast-facts/index.html

http://www.warhistoryonline.com/war-articles/10-little-known-facts-about-d-day.html

https://www.yahoo.com/news/ten-fascinating-facts-70th-anniversary-d-day-100409591.html?ref=gs

And this is an important aspect of WWII, too, one too often forgotten:

The French Resistance Saved Our Butts

Everyone knows the French just rolled over and surrendered to the Nazis, right? Not all of them! The French resistance were our eyes and ears before the invasion, delivering 3,000 written reports and 700 radio reports to the allies during the month before D-Day. We knew where all the German units were, what their strength was, what equipment they had, and even where their Generals vacationed.

On the night before D-Day the French resistance struck all over France, blowing up ammo dumps, cutting telephone lines, and shooting up highway convoys. However, all these attacks pale in comparison to the destruction wrought on the German trains. Resistance fighters conducted nearly 1,000 separate attacks on the railway system the night before the invasion.

Some of these attacks were spectacular, such as blowing up engines or bridges with explosives. Some attacks were more subtle. For example, the rail cars which brought Panzers to the front had an oil reservoir between each set of wheels, lubricating the axles. Brave resistance fighters snuck into the rail yards totally unarmed and removed the drain plugs in these reservoirs with basic hand tools, letting all the oil drain out overnight. When those Panzers were desperately needed the next day to push us back to the ocean, they never got there. The axles overheated and seized up, and those Panzers were stuck on rail cars miles from the front instead of shooting at our fighting men.

D-Day is a day I honor in particular because it is very personal to me. My father landed at Omaha Beach. I was 5 months old and wouldn’t see him for over 3 years. My mother kept his photo by my bed and when He came home I recognized him and ran to him with open arms calling “Daddy, daddy.” Mom said he cried such tears of joy that I was the only dry-eyed one present.

He never talked about the Normandy Landing. He talked about a lot of other things that happened during the war but never that. I loved his war stories and he knew it. He also refused to watch the movie “The Longest Day”. He would get up and leave the room if it came on television. Some scars never fade.

Today when I put my flag in it’s hold it is to honor all the brave men who landed – who lived or died on the beaches of Normandy all those years ago. Without their sacrifice the world would be a very different place. And not for the better. I honor them. I honor them all.

And Dad, even after all this time, I am still so proud.

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57 Responses to “D-Day 2016 *Open Thread*”

  1. Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

    As well you should be, Marge! Thank you so much for this powerful, moving tribute to your father and all those who demonstrated such bravery and courage that day.

    And thank you for highlighting the French Resistance Fighters, too. An old friend’s mother was a French Resistance fighter. A singer, she was able to convey messages on the radio (if memory serves).

    Such bravery and courage demonstrated by so many for so long is humbling indeed. May their memories and sacrifices remind us of the tremendous gifts they gave to the nation and world…

    • kenoshamarge Says:

      I don’t understand the disdain in this country for the French. In some cases it seems to stem from the feeling that they should be everlastingly grateful to us for coming to their aid during WW2. That is about as apt to happen as us being everlastingly grateful for them saving our bacon during the Revolutionary War.

      I think it also became much worse when the French weren’t all in on attacking Iraq. Remember Rep. Walter B. Jones, Republican of North Carolina wanting to rename French Fries – Freedom Fries?

      Reminds me once again that the left isn’t the only place when nutcakes and fools abide.

      • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

        You got that right abt the nutcakes and fools!

        Good question abt the French and disdain for them (though it is also the case that the French are known for their disdain toward, well, everyone, though for the most part, I have not found that to be the case when visiting France).

        As you noted above, the French Resistance Fighters were an integral part of turning the tide, so yes, the disdain seems a bit misplaced…

      • amarissa Says:

        What a beautiful tribute to your dad, thank you so much for sharing. You should, indeed, be very proud of him. I am also very glad that he was able to come back alive!

  2. helenk3 Says:

    Thank you for this post. Our younger generation is not being taught anything about this day of courage.

    • kenoshamarge Says:

      As I told Amy earlier D-Day, my Dad and Vets are all tangled up in my mind and so I mostly focus my love on Vets and know Dad would be good with that.

  3. kenoshamarge Says:

  4. Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

    And since we are discussing veterans, this piece from Military.com abt the charities Trump picked is telling indeed:

    http://www.military.com/daily-news/2016/06/03/trump-donation-went-to-poorly-rated-veterans-charity.html

  5. helenk3 Says:

    http://linkis.com/www.weaselzippers.us/LCn2y

    powerful video

  6. Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

    Your tax paying dollars at work if the VA gets its way:

    http://www.military.com/daily-news/2016/06/06/va-wants-to-provide-transgender-surgeries.html

    • kenoshamarge Says:

      The VA cannot, or does not, provide decent care for Vets who have life threatening problems. And they want to provide for transgender surgery? This is insanity.

      • mcnorman Says:

        The political winds have shifted and they don’t care about those that are having life threatening problems.

        I’m so disturbed by what the VA covers. Cosmetic surgery gone awry is also covered. Bet you didn’t know that, did you? Yup, these soldiers go out and have cosmetic surgery which they pay for out of pocket and then when there is a problem, the taxpayer gets to pay to fix it. Life threatening? No. We are in the middle of a nasty PC pickle marge.

        • mcnorman Says:

          To be honest, I don’t have a problem with anyone doing what they want with their bodies, I just don’t want to pay for it.

          • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

            That’s it exactly, Mcnorman. If someone wants to pay for transgender surgery, have at it. But why TAXPAYERS should have to pay is ridiculous, yet in some places we already are (like prisoners who get the surgery on our dime). It is ridiculous, especially when you consider what psychiatrists and pediatricians have said abt transgender people.

            Dr. McHugh, former director of Johns Hopkins Psychiatry noted that doctors often don’t deal with the mental aspect of someone who claims to be transgendered, they just go along with the surgery.

            But yeah – for the VA to even consider this given their track record is just obscene.

            • mcnorman Says:

              There is a reason why anyone who wants to have this surgery should first go through a psych eval. I have personally known someone who changed their mind (thankfully before they went through the procedures). It’s not something that can be taken back. Depression in particular comes to mind when I think of surgery. Surgery cannot be seen as a one stop shop for fixing what is discombobulated within a soul for whatever reason. I do believe that too many believe a scalpel can quick fix anything.

          • kenoshamarge Says:

            If someone wants to have surgery to change their sex I think it’s insane. But then I think having breast implants to anyone other that a woman who has had cancer surgery that necessitated the removal of her breasts.

            But if that’s what an individual wants – that’s their business. They don’t need my approval.

            But like you I don’t want the taxpayers of this country to pay for it.

            And no I didn’t know about cosmetic surgery other than for disfiguring wounds suffered while serving. Those we owe them. A nose job? I don’t think so.

            • mcnorman Says:

              What do you say to someone who thinks and believes that a surgeon can fix and recreate what mother nature and God did? Even in the 1998 federal mandate to reconstruct after breast cancer, there are many who revise and revise and never quite get the fact that this is NEVER going to be what God made. It is an unrealistic realm that we live in today.

              Would you be surprised knowing that we pay for a lot of cosmetic surgery already (on the family members of those serving)? Because we do already. Does this also mean that the children of those serving will also be entitled to the taxpayer paying for their transgender surgeries? Where does any of this end?

  7. kenoshamarge Says:

    What was General Patton doing on D-Day?

    On June 6 1944, Patton was sitting on the shores of England at the head of a fake army. He was part of the largest and most successful deception operation of World War II. Operation Quicksilver was part of a larger deception plan called Operation Fortitude South/Operation Bodyguard. The plan was used to cloak the build up of the Allied Army and disguise the destination of the invasion.

    http://www.generalpatton.org/D-Day/Patton_Dday.htm

    • kenoshamarge Says:

      I included this because it is a little know fact and because Patton was my Dad’s hero and he would have wanted me to include it.

      • mcnorman Says:

        I thought Patton was one of the greatest generals evah! What would he think of what is going on today? I’m sure that he’s rolling in his grave.

        • kenoshamarge Says:

          I couldn’t agree with your assessment of Patton more. Rolling in his grave? Spinning like a top I would think. His love of country and of the Army would not believe what has happened to both.

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      Thank you so much for mentioning this, Marge. Wasn’t that just brilliant on his part and the others who participated in the fake army? Great bit of trickery there, and it worked!

      mcnorman, yeah – I am sure Patton is rolling over in his grave!

      • mcnorman Says:

        Where are the Patton’s of today?

        • kenoshamarge Says:

          There are none that I’ve seen. I’m sure there are some of that quality, or have the potential to be great but know if they stick their head up some PC POS will chop it off.

          There is always good officer material but never before have they had to swim against a stream of PC idiots and a citizenry that talks about supporting them but does damn little other than talk.

          Most are too busy playing politics to enhance their career. And others must have simply given up with the POS CiC they must obey. JMO.

          • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

            Well said, Marge. I asked Suzy if she ever saw so much politicking from the military as we are seeing now, and she said no (remember, she grew up on Army bases, and her dad is a retired 3 star). It really has gotten to be ridiculous, especially with all of the PC stuff. It is crazy!!!

  8. CiscoKid Says:

    Thank you very much for this glimpse into the past.
    I can understand the pride in your fathers part in the D-Day invasion.
    As American’s we share pride in all our veterans.

    • kenoshamarge Says:

      Absolutely we share our pride in the brave men and women who serve and do what must be done to keep us free.

  9. amarissa Says:

    On another topic, this is what all the media should do to Trump:
    http://www.dailywire.com/news/6321/buzzfeed-terminates-rncs-advertising-deal-over-hank-berrien

    Also, they should not ask him for interviews or receive his calls to opine or announce his polls! This guy should be banned from all media. He is harmful to our eyes and ears.

  10. amarissa Says:

    Is everyone ok here with the storm? I sincerely hope you are!!

    • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

      Sweet of you to ask, Amarissa. We have been having rain, often very heavy, all day long. Tomorrow we are supposed to get the wind along with the rain. But so far so good!

  11. helenk3 Says:
  12. Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

    I just received a call from Blue Cross of CA, from where we have our health insurance about my upcoming back surgery. It was a nurse advising me that as part of my coverage, I will have access to nurses 24/7 in case something comes up or I have a question abt something. She also said she is sending me a cd that helps prepare patients for surgery.

    Wow. I have ragged on Blue Cross plenty, but this was a very nice call to receive.

    Just wanted to share!

    • amarissa Says:

      When is your operation?

      • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

        My surgery is on 6/29. I’ll mention it again, but yeah – I will be out of commission for quite some time, as in a couple of months.

        But, thanks to Kenoshamarge and Helen, my blog will carry on! And this is why I will say more when the date gets closer, but these two amazing women have agreed to post up posts occasionally to keep this site up, especially since the Conventions will be during that time I am away. So grateful for those two!

    • piper Says:

      You know that we’ll keeping the candle burning bright here while you recuperate And definitely in our prayers that your surgery goes well and you’re back on your feet ASAP

      • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

        Thanks so much, piper – I appreciate it! And please see the comment above – Kenoshamarge and Helen will keep the blog going in my absence. Yay!

    • mcnorman Says:

      Don’t stop the ragging…there is much that is happening that is not good. I’m glad that they contacted you. The nursing staff helps keep track of your progress which is good.

      • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

        LOL, oh, you know I won’t. I was just pleased that they did something good all on their own volition! 😀

    • kenoshamarge Says:

      Glad you got some good news. And glad you will have support should you need it.

      There may be problems with Blue Cross but at least at this time and place they came through for you.

      I had heard nothing good about Medicare before I had my bypass. But I have to say that they paid fast and they paid well. So some of us do have good experiences. Too bad everyone doesn’t. The last thing you need when you’re sick or having surgery is having to fight for insurance.

      The POS next door told Lou while I was still in the hospital that with only Medicare we would probably lose our house. But then he voted for Obama, twice, and is supporting Hillary so what could he possibly know about anything. I thought it was an amazingly cruel thing to tell someone who was already stressed so badly.

      • Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

        Thanks so much, Marge. And you are so right – there is nothing worse when facing surgery than having to fight with the insurance company. Thankfully these days, the hospital makes sure the insurance company will pay BEFORE they allow the surgery to go forward. That is how Blue Cross knew I was having it.

        Jackass neighbor!! WTH is WRONG with him??? WOW. Just WOW.

  13. Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

    Marge, I just saw this by Laura Hillenbrand on Facebook: “A couple of years ago, Vanity Fair asked me to write about the Great Depression, and how it shaped Americans. In my mind, the ravages of that decade were essential in crafting the young men who would, with almost unimaginable bravery, storm the beaches of Normandy seventy-two years ago today. It seems fitting to share it here.” Here is the link: http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/2013/10/laura-hillenbrand-on-the-1930s

    I thought that was such an incredible thing to say abt the Depression shaping those young men who stormed Normandy.

    And she had a photo of this photographer, John Morris, who was at Omaha Beach from this Vanity Fair article:
    http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/2014/06/photographer-robert-capa-d-day#7

  14. piper Says:

    Marge,
    Thank you for writing another excellent thread about D-Day and your father.

  15. helenk3 Says:
    • kenoshamarge Says:

      Though many have tried, and many have done a great job, none have ever done it better than the wonderful Kate Smith.

      But that was back in the day when the best thing about a “singer” was the voice. And they didn’t need to dress and act like a pole dancer from a strip club.

  16. Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

    Kenoshamarge posted a story on a previous thread abt a Christian group suing NC State over free speech. They WON: http://dailysignal.com/2016/06/06/judge-rules-in-favor-of-christian-student-group-against-nc-states-speech-permit

  17. helenk3 Says:

    http://theresurgent.com/trump-is-exactly-what-we-thought-he-was/

    maybe some are waking up

  18. helenk3 Says:

    http://soopermexican.com/2016/06/07/trump-admits-someone-at-fox-news-feeds-him-questions-before-interviews/

    no surprise here.
    I think he has pictures and negatives on the head of FOX News

  19. helenk3 Says:

    http://theresurgent.com/republicans-will-either-abandon-trump-or-see-the-country-abandon-the-gop/

    somebody has to wake up soon

  20. helenk3 Says:

    Laurence M. Vance has some questions for progressives and the Obama regime on a “fluid identity “:

    Can someone identify as a senior citizen and collect Social Security?

    Can someone identify as a resident of Colorado, Alaska, Washington, or Oregon and legally use marijuana recreationally?

    Can someone identify as a resident of Missouri and only pay a 17-cents-per-pack tax on cigarettes?

    Can someone identify as a college graduate and qualify for a job?

    Can someone identify as a new parent and take advantage of a company’s paid family leave?

    Can someone identify as a TSA agent and grope people in airports?

    Can someone identify as an ex-con and be released from prison?

    Can someone identify as a cop and seize cash from motorists?

    Can someone identify as a NASCAR driver and disregard the speed limit?

    Can someone identify as a minority and take advantage of a company’s Affirmative Action policy to land a good job?

    Can someone identify as an unwed mother with three children and get a huge Earned Income Tax Credit?

    Can someone identify as a resident of Seattle and get paid a minimum wage of $15 an hour?

    When words mean nothing.

  21. Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy Says:

    Okay – I am HOPING my post shows up at 10 this morning. WordPress is acting screwy again, and even though I scheduled it, it is not showing up ANYWHERE. ARGH. So, we’ll see soon enough…

    • helenk3 Says:

      word press has been having PMS for about a week now. People were complaining at the crawdad hole yesterday. I was using railroad language a few days ago about word press

  22. helenk3 Says:

    http://www.newsmax.com/Politics/trump-judge-criticism-indensifies/2016/06/06/id/732568/?ns_mail_uid=96719427&ns_mail_job=1671864_06072016&s=al&dkt_nbr=4uawvysb

    what a petty pissant

  23. helenk3 Says:

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-06-07/propaganda-bill-congress-could-give-america-its-very-own-ministry-truth

    i am not liking this

    • kenoshamarge Says:

      Oh dear lord what next? The assault on our freedoms are coming so fast it’s hard to keep up.

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