THE NORMANDY INVASION. THE DEATH KNELL FOR AN EVIL DYNASTY.
Written to commemorate the 60th anniversary of this epic, historic —, and MAGNIFICENTLY HEROIC
The saga began in the early 30's when the Germans empowered a dictator's rein,
A mustached maniac lusting
for power, his weapons were terror, slaughter and pain.
His demonic character was mirrored by lackeys, who'd murder their mother to accomplish their goal,
birthing an empire of hatred and greed, with THEM "at the helm" in TOTAL control.
In 1932 Hitler gained power and his Fascist thugs would torture and slaughter,
Genocide was the "final
solution" for millions of Jews, fathers, sons, mothers and daughters.
He launched his mission by striking at Poland where his "murder machine" would open the war,
new records for battle statistics, a Hellish inferno of suffering and gore.
The Jews were targeted for total extinction, over six million would die at this dictator's hands,
in box cars like cattle or cargo, so sick and so weak they barely could stand.
"Blissfully ignorant that gas chambers awaited, they were "consigned" to be "human fuel",
would "finish the demonic job", these were the maniac's ultimate tool.
The rest of the world take their turn at being the victims of a nation gone mad,
As the jack booted
thugs of Hitler's Gestapo -, tortured and slaughtered --, children, teenagers, mothers and dads.
After America entered the war the Allies united a powerful force,
A mighty naval and aerial armada
—, paratroopers and infantry -, entered the war and "altered it's course".
Allied bombers delivered their "cargo", like thundering chariots filling the sky,
Their deadly cargo
pulverized cities, and thousands of Germans and others would die.
Many were innocent victims of war, but many were Nazis who had to be stopped,
And THEY were the targets
of every bomb, that every Allied bomber would drop.
War is not surgical in nature, peripheral death is a terrible fact,
And that the haunted crews of the
bombers and fighters —, and because they were human —, some of them "cracked".
No one can relish killing another but war in reality is suffering and pain,
And often the pain and suffering of others —, even an enemy —, can drive the toughest of men insane.
Around the clock the Allied bombers carried the war to "Hitler's domain,
A thousand bombers flying
to targets, filling the sky like an aerial "train".
The deafening sound of thousands of engines, echoed like thunder and "trembled" the ground,
awful crescendo was even worse yet, in the target cities the bombers would pound.'
Sometimes the bombers had fighter protection, but too many targets were "go it alone",
lacked the fuel and the range -, to fly a round trip-, -, protecting the bombers —, and still make it home.
Then enemy fighters savaged the bombers, Berlin,
Schweinfurt, Ploesti, Regensburg-, Merseburg —, the mission boards recorded the cost,
in dead and missing in action, in the awful number of bombers we lost
Bomber and the fighter crews paid with their courage, their tears, their sweat and life giving blood,
comrades below were doing the same, on the high seas-, on enemy beaches -, or in their foxholes of snow, ice or mud.
That "cross" was borne by one and by all, paratroops, airmen, sailors —, and infantry too,
who were fated by "winds of war" to do the things that they HATED TO DO!!
Across the length and breadth of Europe, the Nazis marched and slaughtered at will,
Across the expanse
of the frigid Atlantic, the U-boats prowled silent and still.
Allied freighters were "sitting duck" targets for U-boats prowling America's shore,
And many a night
east coast citizens --, saw the black smoke -, as a freighter was sunk in the "undersea war".
The Navy -, the Coast Guard -, and Merchant Marines battled the Wolf Packs-, escorting freighters through
When the ocean spray drenching their ship -, would splash on the deck and instantly freeze!
And all too often ill fated freighters -, or naval escorts -, would be torpedoed and sink like a stone,
commanders had "no stopping orders" —, and so survivors - -, if there were any —, would perish alone.
But death was "merciful" in these frigid waters, a few minutes at most -, then the "grim reaper won",
Another family back home in the states -, had just lost a father —, a husband —, a brother or
No firing squads to "sound a farewell" as they quietly passed beneath the waves,
No Granite Marker
or Cross of White standing sentry over their graves.
Friends and loved ones cannot visit or even view their resting place,
There are no Granite sentry markers
with the names of heroes etched and dated upon on their face.
Until the final Judgment Day the memories of these men will be,
Etched upon our grateful hearts although
their bodies are "resting" at sea!
Thus was the fate of Navy, Coast Guard and Merchant Marines providing the life line —, men —,
supplies —, and weapons of war,
So the Allies forces could finish their terrible mission, of taking the fight to
"Hitler's front door"!
The Allies, British, Canadian and American, had battled the Nazis on multiple fronts,
While the brass
were planning the ultimate strike, an "all out punch" —, AND ALL AT ONCE!!
The Nazi's "blitzed" and pounded at England with Luftwaffe bombers and "buzz bombs" too,
But out of
this carnage and senseless slaughter, a firm resolve and anger grew.
The Allies were gaining slowly but surely, more killed and wounded came with each phase,
And the "Big
Event" awaiting the Allies -, meant MORE wounded -, and K. I. A's! (KILLED IN ACTION)
The Allies, British, Canadian and American -, had extracted a toll -, still the Nazis were still determined
But they didn't know what the Allies were planning -, that they'd be outsmarted —, and they would "guess
They knew the Allies would soon be invading, but they didn't know "just where and when,
At what point
of the "compass", what part of the coast, would the Allied invaders start "pouring in"?
By the time the Nazis recovered then- senses, and understood that they had been "duped",
invaders would be landing at Normandy, the infantry, the tankers, the Rangers —, the artillery —, and paratroops.
The "Day Of Decision" was coming to pass, Operation Overlord was now "drawing nigh",
Thousands of men,
ships, planes, tanks, small arms and artillery - -, would attack - , preceded by paratroops filling the sky.
A gigantic and logistical miracle, IF everything went "according to plan",
That miracle COULD turn
into a nightmare, —, in the dark early morn when the forces would land.
The largest gamble —, with the highest stakes —, in the history of warfare —, was a
gamble the General was hating to take,
But whether the gamble succeeded or failed -, Eisenhower knew the "size the of the
In 1942 Ike had been ordered -, to formulate plans for just such a day,
And now the hour of decision was
here, with the "mission schedule" just hours away.
The night of June 5,1944, a date with destiny -, dread -, loneliness —, bloodshed and fear,
hours away and across the Channel, the enemy waited -, the hour was near.
The weather report "was iffy at best", one man alone must make the decision,
To risk the lives of thousands
of men —, planes and ships and Army Divisions!
The General had anguished and gone without sleep, haunted by doubt and the weight of command,
the lives of thousands of men —, and the future of families —, lay in his hands.
General Dwight Elsenhower struggled with doubt —, his body and spirit were "under attack",
knew the odds -, he knew the costs —, he knew too many would never come back!
And what if the mission turned into a failure -, thousands of lives "wasted for naught",
And the loss
of ships, tanks, artillery and planes —, needed for victory —, haunted his thoughts.
The future of freedom lay in his hands -, as world wide slavery and tyranny loomed,
IF the Allied nations
failed in then- mission -, would hope for peace and freedom be doomed?
The curtain of darkness in "Fortress Europe" —, and Asia —, could spread like a plague engulfing
But he knew what tyranny does to the masses —, and he knew precisely what freedom is worth.
Ike had consulted with his advisors, the weather was sloppy and risky this day.
Would the loss of life
be unjustifiable if he ordered the mission to "get underway"?
The first element was ordered —, "proceed to Normandy" —, but as weather and wind conditions
Ike delayed the Normandy landings, the course of the ships was ordered reversed.
Allied commanders —, intelligence operatives —, and command staff—, had counseled, suggested,
informed and advised,
But they knew the decision was Ike's alone, as they studied the anguished look in his eyes.
No one man should ever -, be asked -, or ordered -,
to assume such a burden -,
where the toll was unspeakable -, if the mission went well,
And if it DIDN'T the carnage would be -,
an all out slaughter straight OUT OF HELL!!
The five stars on each of his shoulders -, to the General THIS day "each weighed a ton",
In his capable
hands rested the destiny -, and the lives -, of thousands of Allied and American sons.
And still in his heart the General knew the "hand must be played" regardless of cost,
But he wanted to
make as certain as possible —, that a minimum number of lives would be lost
Mother Nature presented this latest challenge, the weather was sloppy and "iffy" at best,
in nature, Mother Nature's always hard to "out guess".
Another "Joker" stacked in the deck, but the five star General would make his decision,
And give the
order "proceed to Normandy" —, with the naval armada —, the bombers and fighters —, and the Allied Army
and Airborne divisions.
As the weather conditions continued to better, how long would it last nobody could know,
The Five Star
General made his decision, the time was NOW -, the mission was "GO".
The General had written his "resignation" -, and which he'd submit if "Overlord" failed.
That was his
painful personal decision —, made long before the Armada had sailed.
At that horrendous moment in history --, his terrible doubt was painfully clear,
The loss of thousands
of lives for naught ~, was General Elsenhower's greatest fear.
He'd vowed to himself if Overlord failed, he would resign and "bow out in shame",
And for all of the
lives wasted for naught-, he alone would shoulder the blame.
But God was smiling this day on the General —, and on the mission to free the world.
the forces of ultimate evil —, the forces of freedom and justice were hurled!
The massive, mighty and awesome armada, of ships and planes, weapons and men,
This day would strike
a punishing blow in the quest to bring the war to an end.
And free the Allied prisoners of war, death camp survivors —, and the people of Europe from the
And punish the thugs who consigned their victims —, to the "final solution" on "gas chamber trains".
Thousands of men, both veterans and rookies -, an all out assault on the Nazi empire,
Where the veterans
would see a repeat of the past —, and the rookies would get their "Baptism of fire".
Fresh from the arms of mothers, sweethearts and wives —, many would die on Normandy's shore.
like the veterans they were fighting beside —, they'd pay a toll for wining the war.
Operation Overlord became a reality as bombs and troops dropped from the heavens,
From B-24's, B-17's,
B-25's, B-26's, Lancaster1, Spitfires, Typhoons, Mosquito's Thunderbolts, P-38s and Mustangs -, plywood gliders -, and the
lumbering legend C-47's.
British, Canadian and American troops, stormed the beaches in all out attack,
They'd come to "finish
what Hitler had started", intent on their mission they'd NEVER "TURN BACK"!
The Allies stormed Normandy's beach, at Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword,
This date was destined to
be remembered —, Normandy, France ——, "Operation Overlord."
They'd come to this place to "administer justice" and destroy a monster who threatened the world.
the forces of "man made Hell", their courage, their blood and their bodies where hurled.
They died by drowning before they had landed, they died by bullet, bayonet or grenade,
The battle statistics
tell just PART OF THE STORY -, of the awesome, and bloody price that they paid!
They gave their lives in the bombers and fighters, the ships and the landing craft, they died in their
Commanding officers died like enlisted, for death is NOT a "respecter of rank"!
Sometimes they died while saving another, many were wounded and maimed for life,
Many would never father
a child, or know the joy of a lover and wife.
Many were wounded, burned and disfigured, many were "butchered, savaged and torn",
Many just "vanished"
in an explosion, nothing was left for their family to mourn.
The FLAG DRAPED COFFINS, Purple Hearts, Silver Stars, Medals Of Honor -, and many other token awards,
poignantly of the terrible cost —, and magnificent courage —, the legacy of —, Operation Overlord..
Young Americans have walked among legends, whose graying ban*, quiet manner —, gracious humility
and friendly smile,
Conceal the memories too painful to voice, the terrible memories of "The Ultimate Trial"!
A time and place of terrible slaughter, terrible pain, terrible suffering -, terrible loneliness -, and
magnificent courage --, that neither tongue nor pen can tell,
Where valiant men paid with their lives, their sanity, their
minds and their bodies -, to rescue the world from "man made Hell!"
Where teen aged men, fresh out of high school —, left mother's arms for Normandy's shore,
back home in flag draped coffins, back to the land they sacrificed for.
Eleven months of war remained before the Allies brought Hitler to bay,
But "The Day Of Reckoning" at
Normandy, France -, "dawned like the sun" this historic day.
The "Curtain Of Doom" began to descend on the "Thousand Year Reich" the Nazi's envisioned,
Paratroops landed at Normandy, France with American, British and Canadian Divisions.
Fortress Europe was the haven and lair, protecting the tyrant who'd butchered and slain,
And sent six
million powerless Jews -, men, women and children —, on their final jonrney —, on the "Death Camp Trains".
BUT NOW the Allied invaders were coming, retribution and justice were now drawing nigh,
had turned", the "winds had shifted", now it was time FOR THE TYRANT TO DIE!
The "Guarded Doors Of Fortress Europe" had protected this beast of torture and gore,
But Hitler heard
the sound of his "Death Knell" -, at Normandy, France -, when the Allied Forces "KICKED OPEN THE DOOR"!!
Ivan L. Fail (c) 2004,
846 South Linden Ave,
Sparta, Missouri 65753