The Allied invasion of Northern France was the greatest combined operation in the history of warfare. Up until now it has been recorded from the attackers' point of view whereas the defenders' angle has been largely ignored.
While the Germans knew an invasion was inevitable, no-one knew where or when it would fall. Those manning Hitler's mighty Atlantic Wall may have felt secure in their bunkers but they had no conception of the fury and fire that was about to break.
After the initial assaults of June established an Allied bridgehead, a state of stale-mate prevailed. The Germans fought with great courage hindered by lack of supplies and overwhelming Allied control of the air.
When the Allies finally broke out the collapse was catastrophic with Patton's army in the East sweeping round and Monty's in the West putting remorseless pressure on the hard pressed defenders. The Falaise Gap became a graveyard of German men and equipment.
To read the war from the losing side is a sobering and informative experience.
6 June 1944, 4 a.m.
Hundreds of boats assemble off the coast of Normandy. By nightfall, thousands of the men they carry will be dead.
Through their sacrifice, the Allies will gain a foothold in Europe that will ultimately lead to the downfall of the Third Reich.
This was D-Day, the most important day of the twentieth century.
In Sand and Steel, one of Britain's leading military historians draws on a decade of archival research and thousands of interviews to offer a panoramic new account of the Allied invasion of France.
Peter Caddick-Adams masterfully recreates what it was like to wade out onto the carnage of Omaha Beach, facing the machine-gun fire that wiped out whole battalions of troops. He delves into how the Allied generals came to choose Normandy in June 1944, and describes the extraordinary subterfuge that went into keeping the decision secret. And he recounts how the operation transformed the lives of Britons back home, transforming sleepy villages in the Home Counties into bustling military outposts.
His findings offer revelatory new insights into our understanding of D-Day. Sand and Steel is the only book to discuss the experiences of every major military force: not just the infantrymen on the beaches, but also the paratroopers, sailors and aircrew, resistance fighters in France, women on the Home Front, and even the German Wehrmacht. It offers the first full analysis of the year-long invasion preparations, revealing that more men died in training exercises than during the landing itself. Above all, it pays tribute to soldiers of all nationalities, demonstrating that the often-overlooked UK and Canadian were just as crucial to victory as the American forces were.
The result is an authoritative and compulsively readable exploration of the most important battle in history. It will be the definitive work on D-Day for years to come.
Follow the D-Day landings through a unique collection of historical maps, expert commentary and dramatic photographs. This is a unique insight into the D-Day landings 75 years on.
The Allied landings in Normandy on 6 June 1944 were the greatest amphibious assault in history, requiring almost two years of meticulous planning and the largest co-ordinated mapping effort the world has ever seen.
More than 200 illustrations demonstrate how the D-Day landings unfolded, along with detailed descriptions of what happened on that momentous day.
This collection of incredible maps uncover the events that led up to D-Day, the planning for the assault and the progress of the liberating forces afterwards. Dramatic photographs help to illustrate the key historical events that took place during Operation Overlord.
As a boy growing up in New York City, Kevin P. Gilheany had two dreams: to join the Coast Guard, and to play the bagpipes. But by the time he finished high school he was overweight, had a drinking problem, and couldn't swim. Undeterred by the doubts of the folks at home, he decided to enlist in the Coast Guard anyway.
With great determination, and some divine intervention, he passed the swim test and graduated from boot camp, thus beginning an eventful and diverse twenty-year career in the 1980s and 1990s Coast Guard. He set a goal for himself to get command of his own patrol boat, and along the way he was involved in capturing drug smugglers, rescuing hundreds of Haitian migrants at sea, recovering Space Shuttle Challenger debris, surviving a ""hooligan navy"" experience on a Coast Guard workboat, coordinating search and rescue during the famed ""Perfect Storm,"" and leading armed boardings of ships following the terrorist attacks of 9/11.
When he was asked by one of his men, who was dying from brain cancer, to play bagpipes at his retirement ceremony, Kevin started down a new path to have bagpipers officially recognized as part of the Coast Guard. This ultimately led a boy who couldn't swim to fulfill both of his childhood dreams and leave a lasting legacy by founding the U.S. Coast Guard Pipe Band.
Operating in the vast and varied trans-Appalachian west, the Army of Tennessee was crucially important to the military fate of the Confederacy. But under the principal leadership of generals such as Braxton Bragg, Joseph E. Johnston, and John Bell Hood, it won few major battles and many regard its inability to halt steady Union advances into the Confederate heartland as a matter of failed leadership. Here, esteemed military historian Larry J. Daniel offers a far richer interpretation. Surpassing previous work that has focused on questions of command structure and the force's fate on the fields of battle, Daniel provides the clearest view to date of the army's inner workings, from top-level command and unit cohesion to the varied experiences of common soldiers and their connections to the home front. Drawing from his mastery of the relevant sources, Daniel's book is a thought-provoking reassessment of an army's fate, with important implications for Civil War history and military history writ large.
Winning Armageddon provides definition to an all-too-long neglected figure of the Cold War General Curtis E. LeMay and tells the story of his advocacy for nuclear first strikes while leading Strategic Air Command--the Cold War Air Force's nuclear organization. This was despite a publicly proclaimed policy of deterrence. In telling this story Albertson builds for the reader a world that while not in the distant past has been forgotten by many; the lessons of that past however are as applicable today as they were 65 years ago. In weaving his story the author brings to life the challenges fears and responses of a Cold War United States that grappled with a problem to which it did not have a clean solution: nuclear war. It was this concern that LeMay sought to assuage through making his arguments for attacking first in a nuclear conflict--but only if and when it was clear that the enemy was preparing to launch their own surprise strike. This approach commonly referred to as preemption was designed to catch an attacker off-guard and prevent the destruction of one's own nation. In LeMay's case he made the argument that such attacks should initially be directed at an enemy's long-range air forces in an effort to deprive them of an ability to destroy American cities industry and its own military. In so doing LeMay hoped that rather than plunging the world into a fruitless nuclear exchange he could diffuse the conflict at its outset. It was a novel solution to a vexing problem.
A smouldering tinderbox of social, religious and constitutional revolution, mid-seventeenth-century England - soon followed by Scotland and Ireland - exploded into bitter conflict as dissenting members John Hampden and John Holles fled the Long Parliament and Charles Stuart raised his royal standard at Nottingham in 1642. In his atmospheric new history of an era once known simply as 'the Troubles' or as 'the Great Rebellion', David J Appleby shows how the ensuing conflagration turned the world upside down, as long-cherished assumptions about monarchy, social hierarchy and religious belief were consumed like so much parchment in the flame. The author creatively explores the tensions that led to the outbreak of hostilities, and guides the reader through the twists and turns of events, from Edgehill to Naseby (1645) and from the First Bishops' War in Scotland in 1639 to Parliament's daring amphibious assault on royalist Barbados in 1651. Emphasising the close relationships of Charles I's kingdoms and his colonies, this bold and original new treatment places domestic history on a large and colourful global canvas.
For over 40 years, Warship has been the leading annual resource on the design, development, and deployment of the world's combat ships. Featuring a broad range of articles from a select panel of distinguished international contributors, this latest volume combines original research, new book reviews, warship notes, an image gallery, and much more, maintaining the impressive standards of scholarship and research with which Warship has become synonymous.
In the 2019 edition of this celebrated title, articles include Hans Lengerer's exploration of the genesis of the Six-Six Fleet, Michele Cosentino's look at Project 1030, Italy's attempt to create a torpedo-armed attack and ballistic missile submarines, and A D Baker III's drawing feature on the USS Lebanon. Detailed and accurate information is the keynote of all the articles, which are fully supported by plans, data tables and stunning photographs.
This book demonstrates how people were kept ignorant by censorship and indoctrinated by propaganda. Censorship suppressed all information that criticized the army and government, that might trouble the population or weaken its morale. Propaganda at home emphasized the superiority of the fatherland, explained setbacks by blaming scapegoats, vilified and ridiculed the enemy, warned of the disastrous consequences of defeat and extolled duty and sacrifice. The propaganda message also infiltrated entertainment and the visual arts. Abroad it aimed to demoralize enemy troops and stir up unrest among national minorities and other marginalized groups. The many illustrations and organograms provide a clear visual demonstration of Demm's argument.