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D-Day: 11 Surprising Facts About The Normandy Invasion That Will Blow Your Mind

On June 6, 1944, the concerted heroic efforts of 156,000 American, British and Canadian troops led to the allies basically winning World War II. The troops stormed 50 miles of Normandy’s beaches, defended by the axis forces in northern France. This came to be known as D-Day Invasion. The brilliant planning and heroic sacrifices of the D-Day invasion led to the defeat of the Nazi forces in Europe. Below are 11 Things you should know about the Normandy invasion.

    • The Invasion was delayed due to deplorable weather conditions. The invasion was originally slated to take place in May of 1944 but bad weather delayed the launch date of the invasion. General Dwight D. Eisenhower, the Supreme Allied Commander in charge of the Invasion finally on June 5th decided that since the nazis planes were also grounded due to the bad weather they would invade the beach the next day.
    • The D-Day was originally called “Operation Overload”
    • In order, to cripple Germany’s defences, a day before the allied forces were set to invade the beach 1,000 British bombers dropped 5,000 tons of munitions on Nazi gun batteries along the Normandy coast.
    • The Invasion was carried out in five sections on the beachfront along the Normandy coast and it was codenamed, from West to East: “Utah,” “Omaha,” “Gold,” “Juno” and “Sword.”
    • Omaha Beach faced the toughest challenge of the Invasion. It was estimated that around 24000 American troops were killed, wounded or unaccounted for after the fighting at Omaha Beach.
    • The Invasion primarily comprised of US, British and Canadian troops. It also included naval and ground support from  Australian, French, Greek, Belgian, Czech, Dutch, New Zealand, Norwegian, Zimbabwe and Polish.
    • Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill knew from the beginning that a large-scale invasion was the only way to win the war and they planned it for years. It was originally slated to take place in 1943 as “Operation Sledgehammer.” They were to invade the ports of northern France. However, they decide to bide their time to attack the axis forces.
    • Two Months before the Invasion, the troops conducted a rehearsal of the operation with disastrous results.
    • Hitler thought that Germany would easily defeat the Allied forces in the Invasion and he was actually asleep when the troops Invaded Normandy.
    • To test the loyalty of the allied troops, Terence Otway – Commander of the Paratroops – sent 30 of the prettiest members of the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force, dressed in civilian clothes, into village pubs to test if the men would fall for their charm and in height of passion reveal secrets pertaining to the top-secret mission.
    • It is the largest sea invasion in history with a total of 156,115 U.S., British and Canadian troops, 6,939 ships and landing vessels, 2,395 aircraft and 867 gliders.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jun 06, 2021 03:09 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).

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