Normandy campaign


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.

Normandy campaign,

June to Aug., 1944, in World War II. The Allied invasion of the European continent through Normandy began about 12:15 AM on June 6, 1944 (D-day). The plan, known as Operation Overlord, had been prepared since 1943; supreme command over its execution was entrusted to Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower. In May, 1944, tactical bombing was begun in order to destroy German communications in N France. Just after midnight on June 6, British and American airborne forces landed behind the German coastal fortifications known as the Atlantic Wall. They were followed after daybreak by the seaborne troops of the U.S. 1st Army and British 2d Army. Field Marshal B. L. Montgomery was in command of the Allied land forces. Some 4,000 transports, 800 warships, and innumerable small craft, under Admiral Sir B. H. Ramsay, supported the invasion, and more than 11,000 aircraft, under Air Chief Marshal Sir Trafford Leigh-Mallory, formed a protective umbrella. While naval guns and Allied bombers assaulted the beach fortifications, the men swarmed ashore. At the base of the Cotentin peninsula the U.S. forces established two beachheads—Utah Beach, W of the Vire River, and Omaha Beach, E of the Vire, the scene of the fiercest fighting. British troops, who had landed near Bayeux on three beaches called Gold, Juno, and Sword, advanced quickly but were stopped before Caen. On June 12 the fusion of the Allied beachheads was complete. The German commander, Field Marshal Gerd von Rundstedt, found that Allied air strength prevented use of his reserves. U.S. forces under Gen. Omar N. Bradley cut off the Cotentin peninsula (June 18), and Cherbourg surrendered on June 27. The Americans then swung south. After difficult fighting in easily defendable "hedgerow" country they captured (July 18) the vital communications center of Saint-Lô, cutting off the German force under Field Marshal Erwin Rommel. The U.S. 3d Army under Gen. George S. Patton was thrown into the battle and broke through the German left flank at Avranches. Patton raced into Brittany and S to the Loire, swinging east to outflank Paris. A German attempt to cut the U.S. forces in two at Avranches was foiled (Aug. 7–11). The British had taken Caen on July 9, but they were again halted by a massive German tank concentration. They resumed their offensive in August and captured Falaise on Aug. 16. Between them and the U.S. forces driving north from Argentan the major part of the German 7th Army was caught in the "Falaise pocket" and was wiped out by Aug. 23, opening the way for the Allies to overrun N France.

Bibliography

See G. A. Harrison, Cross Channel Attack (1951); C. Ryan, The Longest Day (1959, repr. 1967); A. McKee, Last Round against Rommel (1964); A. A. Mitchie, The Invasion of Europe (1964); Army Times Ed., D-day, the Greatest Invasion (1969); S. E. Ambrose, D-day, June 6, 1944 (1994); R. J. Drez, Voices of D-day (1994); R. Miller, Nothing Less than Victory (1994); T. A. Wilson, D-day 1944 (1994); A. Beevor, D-day: The Battle for Normandy (2009).

References in periodicals archive ?
Caption: Harry Hardy (left) and Bob Spooner, two veteran Typhoon pilots, each 95 years old, travelled to Beny-sur-Mer for commemorative ceremonies marking the anniversary of Operation OVERLORD and the beginning of the Normandy campaign.
He also points out that he wanted to know how the Germans could have taken such crushing blows in the Normandy Campaign but still have been able to challenge the subsequent Allied drive to the heart of the Third Reich.
Readers familiar with the events of the Normandy campaign will find a familiar story well told.
Now, I have no problem with remembering the sacrifices of the Normandy campaign, but it seems to be at the exclusion of everything else.
The costly Normandy campaign, however, set the stage for the launching of Operation COBRA, a concentrated armored dash across France conceived by General Omar Bradley and executed by, among others, General George S.
Retired long-distance lorry driver Mr Lee, who was a Royal Marine during the Normandy campaign and is a former member of the Royal Fleet reserve, said today he was finding the travel exhausting.
Cash left in the branch's bank account will be donated to the North Wales air ambulance by the daughter of a soldier killed in the Normandy campaign.
The Big Red One at D-Day, 6 June 1944: Recollections of the Normandy Campaign and Beyond.
Unfortunately their works have not been the basis for a more profound and focused analysis of the Normandy campaign in film and contemporary writings.
In Chapter ten, for example, we meet Lieutenant John Gorman, a troop commander in the 2nd Irish Guards: during the Normandy campaign of 1944, Lieutenant Gorman won the Military Cross for knocking out a much more powerful German tank--by charging and ramming it with his own.
Representatives from the military and veterans who served in D-Day/Battle of Normandy Campaign were also in attendance.
The unit was awarded battle credits for participation in the Normandy Campaign.