While we were taking our day of rest on Sunday, the world commemorated the 77th anniversary of D-Day, the biggest seaborne invasion in history and likely the most complex military operation of all time. Somehow, a massive invasion involving over 300,000 troops was kept secret until the moment it began on the beaches of Normandy.
Of the Allied troops who stormed the beaches or parachuted behind enemy lines, thousands were killed or injured by relentless gunfire from the entrenched German snipers’ positions. But they fought on and eventually prevailed, gaining a foothold in France and marking the turning of the tide of World War II in Europe.
Here are two articles from Fox News about both D-Day then and the 77th anniversary events.
Here is the website of the National D-Day Memorial with more information.
Here are two fine blog articles about D-Day, the second giving some information about the less-well-known Juno Beach Landings.
And this is a must-read article by Rick Moran at PJ Media about Sunday’s anniversary commemorations in France.
Because of the pandemic, live events were still very limited, with only one D-Day veteran attending the ceremony at the Normandy American Cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer. That was 96-year-old American Charles Shay, who lives in Normandy.
Shay said, “In France, people who remember these men, they kept them close to their heart. And they remember what they did for them. And I don’t think the French people will ever forget.”
Sadly, many young Americans are in danger of forgetting because they’re not being taught accurate American history. It’s hard to push a narrative about America being evil when you have to tell students how many Americans willingly risked their lives and limbs to stop the Nazis and save innocent people they’d never met on the other side of the world. As Moran rightly points out, the word “courage” has been devalued in our modern age, as it’s applied to everyone from celebrities admitting their drug problems to comedians insulting the President.
But the anniversary of D-Day is a reminder of what true courage really is. It’s doing the right thing, even when it requires charging head-on into the face of death. D-Day veterans often shun the title of “hero,” but nobody is more deserving of it. And nobody is more deserving of being remembered and honored long after their lives are over, and long after all of our lives are over.