Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force!
You are about to embark upon the Great Crusade, toward which we have striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere march with you. In company with our brave Allies and brothers-in-arms on other Fronts, you will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.
Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped and battle-hardened. He will fight savagely.
But this is the year 1944! Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of 1940-41. The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeats, in open battle, man-to-man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground. Our Home Fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions of war, and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men. The tide has turned! The free men of the world are marching together to Victory!
I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty and skill in battle. We will accept nothing less than full Victory!
Good Luck! and Let us all beseech the blessing of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking.
Yep, McManus's new book is getting great reviews. It's already considered the definitive account of the battle on Omaha Beach. McManus is professor of Military History at the Missouri University of Science and Technology and author of The American Combat Soldier In WWII along with another book on Operation Market Garden. Sounds like an excellent marketing ploy too: releasing this title on the 70th anniversary of D-Day will automatically get a bunch of advanced sales. I ordered a copy for myself yesterday.
It is very interesting that Rommel was convinced the landing would come at
Pas de Calais. Hitler was sure it would be Normandy but he had such faith
in Rommel that he didn't impose his will as he did in so many other instances.
Rommel also committed some serious tactical errors during the first days of
the invasion when it was still touch and go. He actually thought Normandy
was a feint so he held back major reserves in the Calais area despite overwhelming
intelligence to the contrary. Rommel often went with his gut when intel
said otherwise. This often worked in Africa because of his forces' superior
training and tactics. It didn't work in Normandy.