Destination Normandy: Three American Regiments on D-Day
Each participant's story is woven into the larger picture of the assault, allowing Bennett to go beyond the largely personal viewpoints yielded by traditional oral history but avoiding the impersonal nature of studies of grand strategy. In addition to the interviews and memoirs Bennett collected, he also discovered fresh documentary evidence from American, British, and French archives that play an important part in facilitating this new approach, as well as archives in Britain and France. The author unearths new stories and questions from D-Day, such as the massacre of soldiers from the 507th at Graignes, Hemevez, and elsewhere. This new material includes a focus on the regimental level, which is all but ignored by historians, while still covering strategic, tactical, and human issues. His conclusions highlight common misperceptions about the Normandy landings. Questions have already been raised about the wisdom of the Anglo-American amphibious doctrine employed on D-Day. In this study, Bennett continues to challenge the assumption that the operation was an exemplary demonstration of strategic planning.
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a » 14 machine guns , bazookas , mortars , and flamethrowers had gone to the bottom of the channel along with the bulky equipment needed to deliver it . Company A was reduced to tatters during the landing .
Private John Hinchliff later recorded his experiences in the desperate moments as the Germans overran the town : I grabbed my machine gun and instructed my assistant gunner to pick up the machine gun ammo and we retreated to the bottom ...
S.Sgt . DAVID W. SMITH , 20363896 ; scaled cliff under deadly machinegun fire . ... Sgt . JAMES A. SLIGH , 20363893 ; displayed initiative and courage in organizing and concentrating fire of machine gun section .
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