D-Day is the most well-known, gruesome day in the history of WWII. Out of the five landings, the landing on Omaha Beach was, by far, the worst for the U.S. and The Allies. Paratroopers who had landed the night before came up behind the Germans and aided the U.S. and The Allies. Eventually they pushed through and invaded Hitler’s Europe. Even though D-Day was considered a massacre, the invasion aided the US’s ultimate victory.
D-Day happened on June 6, 1944. It was one of the darkest days in the history of World War II, not only for the U.S., but also the Allies. D-Day was the invasion of Hitler controlled Europe, and the beginning of the fall of an empire. It consisted of airborne attacks and assaults on five beaches given the code names, Utah, Gold, Juno, Sword and Omaha. With 35,000 troops and 4,404 bombs weighing tow hundred and fifty pounds each, D-Day was called the worlds largest, greatest planned amphibious attack ever.
As for the assaults on the beaches, four of the five went pretty well. The Germans did not put up much of a fight and the troops penetrated Europe quite easily. However, down the coastline, a vicious battle was happening and history was being made. The Germans were putting up much more of a fight and the opposing troops were fighting just to stay alive. But with land mines and heavy fire from German machine guns this was not an easy task. Right when the ramp was lowered on the U.S. boats, troops were shot like dogs. Some jumped over the side looking to swim to shore, but the weight of their gear pulled them to the bottom and they drowned. Those who made it to the beach scrambled for any cover that they could find. (Being shelled and shot at they needed a miracle to save them.) That miracle was troops that came from behind. Even though they had the back-up, 41% of the men on Omaha beach were killed.
The night before the assaults there were planes flying low and fast over Europe. They weren’t dropping bombs, they were dropping men. Paratroopers who were to provide back-up for the troops on the beaches were jumping out of the planes and preparing for the next day. Over 2,000 troopers were dropped over various parts of Europe. A paratrooper is basically a soldier who is dropped by parachute into enemy territory. A paratrooper was a walking arsenal. He had everything that he needed to survive. He carried two fragmentation grenades, one smoke grenade, one antitank mine and one antitank Gammon bomb made of plastic explosives. He also had a weapon, either a rifle, carbine, pistol or submachine gun with ammunition. Other gear included a knife, light, razor, spoon, maps, compass, first-aid kit, food, entrenching tool, main and reserve parachutes, gas mask, jump knife, helmet and spare clothing. All of this gear totals up to weighing about 100 pounds, and he jumped with it all on him. Had it not been for these men, the U.S. and Allies probably would have never pushed through at Omaha beach. The troops came up behind the Germans and surprised them, which was a big help to them. By adding to their fighting force the U.S. and the Allies would push through at Omaha into Hitler’s Europe.
With the beaches cleared and the men on land the U.S. and the Allies finally had a foothold to win the war and bring Hitler from power. Getting inland was a great victory for the U.S. and the Allies, and the beginning of Hitler’s road to defeat. After many more months of fighting the U.S. and its Allies would have ultimate victory. Hitler committed suicide, and his rein of terror was over. All concentration camps were evacuated and all seized land was returned. Yet if the U.S. and Allies hadn’t pushed through, this process would have been extremely delayed, who knows it may have never happened.
D-Day is probably the most well known day in the history of World War II and still burns in the minds of the men who fought on that day. It is a day that should always be remembered. Think about what might have happened if the soldiers hadn’t pushed though and didn’t make it inland. What would the world be like today? Would Hitler have lived his dream of conquering the world and making the “perfect race?” All in all, D-Day was the most important day in the history of World War II.