June 6th 1944 – Operation Overlord
I guess it would be futile of me, going into great detail about this momentous event. Most of my readers will be familiar with it and have also seen this iconic photograph before:
Quite obviously it is „Into the Jaws of Death“ by Robert F. Sargent.
If you have never seen it before
a) under which rock did you grow up?
b) you have now.
Although I must admit, to my shame, I was unaware of its title until an hour ago. Maybe I heard it before but forgot.
As was pointed out before, the success or failure of Operation Overlord decided the fate of Europe to a far greater extend than was readily apparent at the time.
If Operation Overlord had failed, Hitler and Stalin would most likely have slugged it out amongst themselves, at least for quite a long time and this would have meant that either one or the other authoriterian dictatorship would have dominated Europe. Of course, there are more nouances to this point but you get the idea.
To get to the point of the headline:
I know people who faught on both sides of the beach. British and German, to be precise. They all felt the same. Everybody wanted to go home, everybody thought they were right, everybody was scared. The Germans at least were glad they were serving in the West.
So today, let us remember the veterans of Operation Overlord, and let us remember both sides. After all, the enemies of those days have been allies now for two generations. Yes, history spins strange tales…
I for my part have to be especially thankful Operation Overlord was a success, I am part of a British-German family.