What The Heroic Men Of D-Day Faced Down To Secure The West’s Freedoms

Jun 6, 2019 by

by Joshua Lawson, The Federalist:

On November 10, 1942, Winston Churchill remarked that the Allied victory at the Second Battle of El Alamein was “the end of the beginning.” It was a start; the first major win against the European Axis powers in more than a year. Hope was in the air, but further trials remained.

It would be another 574 days until Operation Neptune—the codename for the amphibious Allied invasion of Normandy, France. When it came at last, “D-Day” would seal the fate of Adolf Hitler. For the fascist Nazi tyranny that had held most of Europe hostage for five years, it was now—finally—the beginning of the end.

Churchill and President Franklin Delano Roosevelt long recognized that a breakthrough in the heart of Europe was needed to take the fight to the Nazis. For a time, Churchill favored cleverly sneaking the Allies into Nazi territory “through the back door” of the Balkans and beating the Soviets to Germany. This was later tabled in favor of a daring attack across the English Channel.

Although German leaders expected an attack to come somewhere in the Pas-de-Calais region, the invasion took place 200 miles west of Calais. The Allies successfully deceived the Nazis until the assault was upon them.

The D-Day attack remains the largest seaborne invasion in history. The Normandy landings on June 6, 1944, followed the triumph of the Anzio campaign, which ended with the capture of Rome a day earlier.

Designated as the supreme allied commander in December 1943, Dwight D. Eisenhower’s moving final message to the men of D-Day is often overlooked in the study of American history. On the morning of the attack, Eisenhower addressed the soldiers of the Allied Expeditionary Force:

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VOCES8 performs ‘Lux Aeterna’ by Edward Elgar live at the Gresham Centre in London.

Lux aeterna luceat eis, Domine, cum sanctis tuis in aeternum, quia pius es. Requiem aeternam dona eis, Domine, et lux perpetua luceat eis.

May light eternal shine upon them, O Lord, with Thy saints forever, for Thou art kind. Eternal rest give to them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them.

(Elgar’s ‘Nimrod’)

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