Battle of Normandy Essay

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One of the most significant encounters of World War II was the Battle of Normandy (the first day of which is commonly referred to as D-Day). Nearly three million soldiers were deployed for the invasion. Those deployed consisted mainly of American and British soldiers, however Canadian, French, Polish, Belgian, and Czech forces were represented as well (Jensen). The battle was fought in an effort to gain European ground and to reduce the German potential for overrunning Russia (Lucas). The Battle of Normandy was significant in that it was the turning point of World War II, incurred heavy casualties on each side, and was the greatest amphibious landing in history (Cohen). The events leading up to the Battle of Normandy are perhaps…show more content…
Thousands of large still spikes (known as hedgehogs) were also sunk into the sand to halt the progress of enemy tanks (Newark 145). Allied troops readied themselves for the assault. The attack on Normandy had been pushed to June fifth, 1944; however the forecast on June third predicted unfavorable conditions due to unusually high winds. The invasion ultimately took place on June 6th, 1944 (D-Day) (Cohen). The first troops deployed into battle were paratroopers. Over thirteen thousand U.S. paratroopers were dropped by an armada of C-47s behind German lines before dawn. Their mission was to seize bridges, disrupt communications, and prevent German soldiers from reinforcing the Normandy beaches as the Allied assault hit the coastline (Alberecht). Heavy cloud coverage made for difficult navigation and forced many of the paratroopers to jump “blind”. This resulted in them being scattered over a 100-square mile radius. Thirty-five percent of these soldiers landed at their designated drop point, while many others died when they landed in fields flooded by the Germans. Despite all of this, the remaining troops were able to secure their intended positions (Dry). The next phase in the Battle of Normandy was the storming of the beaches. A fleet of 4,000 ships carrying 176,000 men set sail. The chosen landing area was east of the Cotentin Peninsula in Normandy along the beaches.

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