D-Day June 6, 1944 By Will Borchers

Planning for D-Day

  • Planning for D-Day required several years.
  • The Trident, Quadrant, Sextant, and Eureka Conferences made and reviewed these plans.
  • Normandy was chosen as the target to invade Nazi Germany because it had expansion options, better air support, and was less heavily guarded.
  • The Allies chose Dwight D. Eisenhower as the commander for Operation Overlord, which was the plan for invading Nazi Germany.
  • Adolf Hitler appointed Erwin Rommel to be in charge of building the sea wall around expected invasions points.
  • The U.S. used deception tactics, such as fake radio transmissions, to confuse the Germans on when and where the attack would take place.
  • The allies had bombings take place before the invasion to slow down the Germans on their counter attacks and communications.
  • Along Normandy, there were concrete gun emplacements, metal tripods, mines, and other obstacles to delay invasion advancements.
  • The countries that were part of the allied invasion were mostly America, The U.K., and Canada. They also included Australia, Czechoslovakia, Belgim, France , Greece, The Netherlands, New Zeland, Norway, and Poland to a smaller extent.

Weather

  • Eisenhower originally selected the fifth of June, but was delayed until the sixth because of weather conditions.
  • That time frame was chosen because of the tides, and delaying would mean having to wait two more weeks.
  • Many landing crafts and paratroopers were blown off course from their destination on D-Day.

The Night Before

  • The night before D-Day, the allies sent bombers and paratroopers behind enemy lines to destroy obstacles on the beach. They also destroyed things such as bridges in order to slow counter attacks.
  • The allies also targeted German aircraft facilities in an attempt to cripple the Luftwaffe, the Nazi Airforce, and establish air superiority.
  • This was essential in making sure the amphibious landings were successful.
  • The Allies deployed more than 10,000 paratroopers.
  • Many paratroopers died or didn't land in the correct location.
  • These preparations were successful in confusing German officers.

Omaha Beach

  • Omaha Beach was a crucial capture because it linked the targeted Brittish and American beaches.
  • This would be an American target.
  • Omaha was an easily defendable beach because of obstacles, such as tall cliffs.
  • Over 2,000 Americans died, making Omaha Beach the site of the most casualties.

Utah Beach

  • Utah was also an American objective.
  • At Utah more than 20,000 allied soliders landed at the cost of less than 500 men.

Sword Beach

  • Sword Beach was a Brittish objective.
  • At Sword, 21 of the 25 tanks landed successfully.
  • At most, there were 1,000 casualties at Sword Beach.

Juno Beach

  • Juno Beach was a Canadian objective.
  • They penetrated the deepest of any of the landing forces on D-Day.
  • Casualties at Juno Beach were between 950, and 1,000 men.

Gold Beach

  • Gold Beach was a British objective.
  • They had to contact Americans and Canadians on their left and right.
  • They used special vehicles such as Funnies, and Flail Tanks.
  • Casualties at Gold Beach were estimated to be around 1,000 men.

After Effects

  • D-Day allowed the allies to gain a foothold in continental Europe.
  • At the end of the day there were over 156,000 troops in France, and a week later -when the Allies seized control of the beaches- they had 326,000 troops, 50,000 vehicles, and 100,000 tons of equipment in Normandy.
  • This would result in the Nazis having to fight on two fronts because Russia was advancing from the East.
  • German casualties ranged from 4,000 to 9,000 men.
  • Allied casualties ranged around 10,000.
  • Civilian casualties ranged around 3,000.

Interesting Facts

  • Aound 160,000 allied troops were involved in D-Day.
  • The coast of Normandy is fifty miles long.
  • The D in D-Day is not something like "Dooms" instead it is just means day.
  • Medal of Honor recipients were Private W. Carlton Barrett, First Lieutenant Jimmy W. Monteith Jr., Technician Fifth Grade John Jay Pinder Jr., and Brigader General Theodore Rosevelt Jr..
  • D-Day was the largest amphibious invasion in history.

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