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Twenty years after the end of the First World War a man named Adolph Hitler of Germany began a Second World War. On September 1, 1939 Germany invaded Poland, which had a treaty with France and England to protect them. The English, French and Polish were all unprepared to fight, and as a result were beaten terribly. By the next spring France had been totally taken by the Germans. While Germany and there allies, Italy, controlled all of the western part of Europe. England, France and now America had to figure a way to take the control of Europe again. There decision was to try and storm a beach in Normandy France.
It would be one of the bloodiest war battles in U.S. History. This storming of Omaha Beach would be a success because even though the allies lost a lot of men, they still were able to take the beach, which led them to take the continent. This was the beginning of the end for Hitler and his Nazis. Hitler and his partners, Japan and Italy, made many mistakes, which opened the door for the allied forces to make this operation possible. Germanys big mistake was that Hitler had assembled a massive naval fleet to try and invade England. Hitlers thinking was that if he did try to go against one of the greatest naval fleets in the world that he would not be able to get it done.
He also realized that the British would anything to stop a German invasion. So Hitler delayed and eventually cancelled the attack. Even if he had lost the invasion into England, he could have at least damaged the British navy. His partner, Italy, had brought in northern Africa, and Japan brought the US in when they not only bombed the navy base Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, but also hit other U.S. possessions like the Philippians. Now that the U.S. was in the war, Germany had its hands full. The allies kept planning a time when they could go ashore and take control of France again.
In the summer of 1942 Britain and Canada actually tried a small amphibious attack across the English Channel at a small French port, Dieppe. It was a frightfully disastrous attempt 6,100 men were involved in the attack and over half were killed or captured. Yet the allies insisted that an attack from the water was the only way to get on the offensive in Europe. This massive loss did teach the allies a lesson; it taught them that they need to not try and take a built-up sea port like Dieppe, but instead to try and send a massive attack on the open beaches. The problem the allies faced with going on a beach was that an invasion with the amount of force that they were planning would need a seaport for the mass number of people, gasoline, weapons, food, and many other supplies. So the allies came up with the plan they would bring the port with them to the beach.
They brought things like ships to be sunk so they would have breakwaters, floating piers and cranes and hoists. After the lost at Dieppe the allies luck changed and they began a string of winning battles. The British with American aid won battle after battle in Northern Africa to push the Germans, and Italians out of northern Africa. Once the allies got Africa back they needed to knock Italy out of the war. In late 1943 the allies were making the actual plans for the great cross channel invasion that would be named operation overload. Although more popularly known as D-Day, though D-Day stands for day of attack in any battle, but is most commonly linked to the turning point in the war.
They decided that they wanted the invasion to happen in the middle of 1944. The success to the invasion was dependent on air assaults and the naval assaults. The Air Force was sent to bomb and ruin German artillery and major points of military power, and the navy was to do the same. They also had to deal with the terrain of Omaha beach especially. The beach was about 4 miles long and very open. The Germans knowing this had beefed up their defenses there because they knew it would be a good place to invade.
The bank rises almost like shingles of a house. At the top ran a road; on the other side of the road were sand dunes, which allowed visibility to the whole beach. The beach only had four exits to get from the beach to the road and the Germans had them loaded with pillboxes, which have a small slot for the person which is inside to shoot out of and the soldier outside had a very small area to shoot the guy on the inside, they had concrete bunker for protection, and powerful automatic artillery. With all of the natural things the Germans had they put anti tank weapons, mortar cannons, and many rocket batteries. This was a major problem for allied troops because with that kind of fire power the Germans could hit a target anywhere on the beach at any time. This meant disaster for the allied troops.
The allied forces had to use engineers to go in ahead of time and clear some of the trap, mines, and other devises the Germans had to stop an invasion. These poor men were out in the wide open and were shot by snipers like it was nothing. So at the time of invasion the obstacles were still abundant. As we were approaching the shale embankment, we went through various underwater obstacles with attached mines, and the enemy was firing at them in order to detonate them if possible. That was our first experience with under fire. (Drez, pg 206, Frank Simeone) The invasion was extremely top secret even though the German army should have realized something was coming after the massive air strikes that took out many of the railroad tracks. During the World War II the main way to move troops across land was the train and by the allies destroying many of these links it disabled the Germans to move from place to place with any speed.
The invasion that occurred on the 6 of June 1944 was the largest amphibious invasion of all time and the most decisive battle in the war. Over 155,000 allied troops were deployed that day and it was launched as a total surprise to the Germans. The success of D-Day depended on three major things; Allied air and naval supremacy, and the dispersal of German troops through out all of Europe. By the middle of 1944 these first two didnt seem to be of much concern, the allied bombers had bombed Germany unmercifully and the German U-boat threat no longer existed. The third key point to success would be a little more difficult to accomplish however, keeping the place for the invasion a secret from the Germans. This information wasnt leaked out for many reasons.
The most important reason was t ....
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