D-Day , Sword Beach and British Airborne Landings Pt.3 by Ken Ford | | Booktopia
Over 23, men of the US 4th Infantry Division landed on Utah beach, the westernmost of the assault beaches. Strong currents swept the first wave of troops into a more lightly defended sector of the assault area — 2, yards south of their original target. After periods of intense fighting, the paratroopers secured the causeways across the flooded lowlands, providing a route for troops on the beach to move further inland.
By the end of the day, the 4th Infantry Division had advanced approximately four miles at a cost of about killed, wounded or missing. Omaha was the most heavily defended of the assault areas and casualties were higher than on any other beach. Preliminary Allied air and naval bombardments failed to knock out strong defence points along the coast and the Americans had difficulties clearing the beach obstacles.
The experienced German nd Infantry Division was taking part in anti-invasion training in the area and was able to reinforce coastal defence units. Despite these challenges, the Americans were able to gain a small foothold on the beach by the end of the day. At the nearby Pointe du Hoc, US Rangers completed a costly assault on German gun emplacements at the top of the cliff.
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Their objectives were to capture the town of Bayeux and the Caen-Bayeux road, and to link up with the Americans at Omaha. High winds caused the tide to rise more quickly than expected, concealing the beach obstacles underwater. But unlike on Omaha, the air and naval bombardment had succeeded in softening German coastal defences.
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By the end of the day, British troops had advanced about six miles inland and joined with troops from the Canadian 3rd Division, who had landed on Juno beach to the east. Rough seas delayed the landing and the rising tide reduced the width of the beach, which eventually became jammed with incoming vehicles and equipment. The aim was to protect the left flank of the Allied bridgehead in Normandy, in liaison with the 6th Airborne Division which had landed between the Orne and Dives rivers. Jointly they were supposed to seize the strategically important city of Caen, fifteen kilometres from Sword beach.
The assault was led by the 3rd British Infantry Division, reinforced by the commandos of the 1st and 4th Special Service Brigades and supported by specially adapted tanks.
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The sector of Sword Beach stretched from Langrune to Ouistreham. Once landed, the commandos neutralized the German strongpoints by attacking them from both sides. The landing on Sword Beach was largely successful. They were attacked by the 21st German Panzer Division. After the Germans lost 50 of their tanks, they abandoned their positions.
Congestion on the beaches and determined resistance by some German strongpoints further inland, prevented the British from capturing Caen on 6 June as they had hoped. Eventually more than a month of fighting was necessary to complete the liberation of the city on 9 July Tourist information There are several sites and items of interest In the Hermanville area.
Near Hermanville-Bourg a British military cemetery with 1. Only rarely do military units assume the name of their commanders. The Commando Kieffer owes its name General Dwight D.
Related D-day 1944 (3) Sword Beach & The British Airborne landings
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