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Thursday, June 06, 2013

D-Day - June 6, 1944 - Remember This Day

Today marks the 69th Anniversary of the Allied Invasion of France; the Beginning of the End for the Germans in occupied Europe



                                                    President Roosevelt's D-Day Prayer



U.S. World War II veteran Clarence "Mac" Evans, 87, from West Virginia, who landed in Normandy on June 6, 1944, with the 29th Infantry Division, walks among the graves at the Colleville American military cemetery in Colleville sur Mer, western France, on June 6, before the start of the ceremony commemorating the 68th anniversary of the D-Day. Evans was searching for the tombs of 17 of his fellows who died on D-Day.

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 1940-1941. 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 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 beseech the blessing of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking.
Signed….Dwight D. Eisenhower

But he (Eisenhower) also wrote something more telling of the character of true leadership. Had the invasion failed, he had already penned another note:
“Our landings have failed and I have withdrawn the troops. My decision to attack at this time and place was based on the best information available. The troops, the air and the Navy did all that bravery could do. If any blame or fault attaches to the attempt it is mine alone.” (See the hand written note here.   Source

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