Allies prepare for D-Day – HISTORY
On June 5, 1944, more than 1,000 British bombers dropped 5,000 tons of bombs on German gun batteries placed in the Normandy assault zone, while 3,000 Allied ships crossed the Channel in anticipation of the invasion of Normandy – D-Day
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The day of the invasion of occupied France had been postponed several times since May, mainly due to the bad weather and the enormous tactical obstacles involved. Finally, despite less than ideal weather conditions – or perhaps because of them – General Eisenhower decided on June 5 to fix the next day for D-Day, the launch of the largest amphibious operation in history. Ike knew that the Germans would expect postponements beyond the sixth, precisely because the weather was still bad.
Among the Germans convinced that an Allied invasion could not be carried out on the sixth, there was Marshal Erwin Rommel, who was still debating tactics with Marshal Karl Rundstedt. Runstedt was convinced that the Allies would enter the narrowest point of the English Channel, between Calais and Dieppe; Rommel, following Hitler’s intuition, thought it would be Normandy. Rommel’s greatest fear was that the German air inferiority would prevent adequate defense on the ground; it was his plan to meet the Allies on the coast – before the Allies had a chance to land. Rommel began to build submarine obstacles and minefields, and left for Germany to personally ask Hitler for more panzer divisions in the region.
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On June 5, bad weather and the order to conserve fuel failed. therefore, his reconnaissance flights were irregular. That night, more than 1,000 British bombers launched a massive assault on batteries of German guns on the coast. At the same time, an allied armada is heading towards the Normandy beaches in Operation Neptune, an attempt to capture the port of Cherbourg. But that was not all. In order to deceive the Germans, bogus operations were carried out; fictional paratroopers and radar jamming devices were dropped in strategically key areas to make the German radar screens appear to believe that an Allied convoy was already in motion. A dummy parachute managed to move a German infantry regiment from its position just six miles from the Normandy landing beaches. All this effort consisted in dispersing the German defenses and giving way to Operation Overlord, the Allied invasion of Normandy.