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D-Day Normandy Landings Tuesday, 6 June 1944

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  • D-Day Normandy Landings Tuesday, 6 June 1944

    The Normandy landingsD-Day: Infrared photos reveal WW2 bunkers in new light

    On 6 June 1944, World War Two allied forces launched one of the most ambitious amphibious attacks in history, landing along 50 miles of the heavily fortified Normandy coast in France and creating a significant dent in Hitler's Atlantic Wall.

    More than 70 years later, Lynda Laird photographed the remnants of Normandy's bunkers using infrared film, a medium used by the military in WW2 to detect camouflage by exposing a visual spectrum that's invisible to the naked eye.

    The images were taken along the Normandy coast, from Utah beach to Deauville.

    Accompanying Laird's photographs is Odette Brefort's diary entry from 6 June 1944. A member of the French Resistance, Brefort lived in Deauville throughout WW2, providing military intelligence on the German defences by drawing intricate maps to send to her comrades in Paris.

    Diary of Odette Brefort, 6 June 1944

    "Oh, what a night! My little head is all shell-shocked.

    "Since midnight it's been impossible to sleep: the humming from planes, the anti-aircraft bombs, the machine gun noise.

    "I went downstairs because I couldn't sleep and after 15 minutes it went quiet. Thinking it would be better, I went back to bed. What a mistake!

    "All night, the humming from planes, it was non-stop."

    "By rule we don't have the right to leave Deauville, or to ride our bicycles.

    "The weather remained foggy until midday, the sun shone from 4pm. It must be the English who brought the clouds! The defence volunteers will be able to move freely tonight."

    "Around 6:00pm, what a tremendous bang! It is the Mont Canisy. The English navy must have blown up a large artillery battery that was shooting at them. It had been deafening us since this morning. I think the shot hit the target, as we can't hear a thing anymore."

    "What on earth will happen to us when the Navy and Air Force take care of our region?

    "There is no electricity. Deauville is in the dark."

    In the 1980's wife and I did a euro trip...renting an automobile and driving around the EU for about 4 weeks. One stop was Deauville and Beauville. It was raining and cold the day I went walking on the beach. (wife stayed in automobile). I had an eerie feeling that day walking on the beaches there. It left me with memories that I have not forgotten today.
    Last edited by Pete; June 5th, 2018, 08:17 PM.
    - Pete

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  • #2
    I've taken the "pilgrimage" to the Normandy beaches. It is very humbling to stand on the long and wide expanse of beach and face the hills that our fathers and grandfathers surmounted on foot while under fire. Even more humbling, and quite frankly emotional, is a visit to the American cemetery. If you appreciate history, especially history made by common men doing uncommon things, this trip should be on your bucket list.

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    • #3
      D-Day concert on Sword Beach in France for 75th anniversary draws outrage

      D-Day concert on Sword Beach in France for 75th anniversary draws outrage from some veterans

      By Travis Fedschun | Fox News
      2nd of June, 2018

      A planned concert to mark the 75th anniversary of the Allied forces landing on the beaches of France to liberate Europe from the Nazis in World War II has drawn outrage from some veterans who said it's not appropriate for "sacred" ground.

      The Netherlands-based organizers behind the Liberty Concert Normandy, scheduled for June 6, 2019, on Sword Beach, said they wanted 75,000 people paying close to $90 to attend the festivities, which they claimed would educate millennials about the start of the liberation of Nazi-occupied Europe, Sky News reported.

      On a website for the event, organizations billed the location as the beach that "looks out over the sea where the fight for peace began."

      "The concert starts with films, parachutists and stories about the landing," the group said. "The stage is then handed to several international top artists and DJs. With the slogan ‘Fight for Freedom’ the 75,000 people present and the millions of viewers (via TV and streaming) are asked to stand up for peace, freedom and an inclusive society."

      The organizers said that as they developed the concert idea, they spoke with "several" veterans who would be "guests of honor at the event."

      "Next year we will invite them to come to the concert for free, attend the concert in the VIP-area and experience how artists and youth will show respect to them," the group said. " Some of them will also be on stage to say or do something shortly."

      However, some veterans and their families said they were outraged at the planned festivities, with some people starting an online petition looking to "remember D-Day respectfully." The petition has drawn more than 2,400 signatures.

      "When I found out about the concert I was horrified really, to think that on 6 June, the anniversary of D-Day, so many troops died on the beaches. Not only British troops, but Canadians, French, Americans, Dutch and other nationalities died on those beaches," 95-year-old veteran Joe Cattini told Sky News. "The beaches are, on that day of all days, sacred. They shouldn't be violated by pop concerts."

      Cattini told Sky News he visits the beaches and the surrounding villages every year on June 6 with other veterans to remember his friends who died there.

      "Have it a bit further inland, not on the beach itself. It's rather bad taste," he told Sky News.

      Dame Vera Lynn, an English singer known as "The Forces’ Sweetheart," recently severed ties with the concert organizers. Virginia Lewis-Jones, Lynn's daughter, told The Telegraph last month that her 101-year-old mother had "no idea" what kind of event it was going to be when she originally signed up.

      A statement released on behalf of Lynn to The Express said that she was "always keen to support charitable endeavors, especially those that benefit veterans."

      The organizers, however, claimed the event would "ensure that the lives of fallen soldiers will not be forgotten with the next generation."

      "We believe the best way to share the powerful legacy of sacrifice is by bringing young people near to the place where this history happened, as it creates an unforgettable moment in their lives," the group wrote on its website. "We think the symbolic function of this day and this beach helps to touch the hearts of millions of people."

      Those interested and disagree with having a concert there can sign this online petition:

      Demand that the Liberty concert on Sword Beach on D Day 2019 be cancelled or moved to a more suitable location.
      - Pete

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