Presentation on theme: "Battle in the West - D Day & Beyond. Battle in the West – D Day & Beyond From the Battle of Britain to the invasion of Italy… -increased resistance to."— Presentation transcript:
Battle in the West – D Day & Beyond From the Battle of Britain to the invasion of Italy… -increased resistance to Nazi occupation -build up of Bomber Command & USAAF in Britain leads to night & then day bombing of mainland -Casablanca Conference (Jan 1943) Germany first reaffirmed unconditional surrender Sicily invaded in July France to be invaded in August, later postponed Deutsches Afrika Korps defeated -Battle of the Atlantic on the improve for the Allies -Deutsches Afrika Korps defeated -Operation Husky: Sicily (July 10)
Battle in the West – D Day & Beyond The soft underbelly of Europe – NOT -July 10 to Aug 17 1943: conquest of Sicily -July 25: Mussolini overthrown by Fascist Grand Council, Italians make secret peace overtures -August 13 - 23: Quebec Conference Overlord set for May 1944 -Sept 8 - 10: Italy surrenders, Italian mainland is invaded, Germans move in -end of Sept: Germans defending Gustav Line = stalemate -Nov 28 - Dec 1: Tehran Conference -Monte Cassino: fierce fighting -Jan 22, 1944: Anzio landings -June 5: Allies enter Rome -front remained fairly static until end of war.
Battle in the West – D Day & Beyond Planning for Overlord -begins April 1943 -Dieppe Raid (Aug 1942) -Gen Eisenhower appointed Allied C-in-C -where to attack -specialised equipment -combined arms -deception -Russian offensive timed to coincide
The Normandy Landings -night of June 5/6: airborne attacks to create confusion, capture/destroy bridges, etc -French Resistance join in -3400 ships, 2500 landing craft -landings at 5 beaches: Utah (US) - light casualties, Omaha (US) - almost 10% casualties Gold, Sword (Br) & Juno (Can) - light casualties -German resistance was heavy but confused -Hitler believed real invasion was still to come & refused to release the German reserves -landed 155,000 troops but not all objectives were achieved -logistics & supply vital
Battle in the West – D Day & Beyond Breakout -By June 30, Allies had only secured the Normandy coast & port of Cherbourg (damaged by the German occupiers) -July: desperate British attacks in eastern Normandy wear down German resistance & allow American attack in the west to succeed (Operation Cobra) -Aug 15: Allies land on coast of southern France -Aug 25: Paris liberated -Sept 3: Brussels liberated -Sept 11: Allied troops reach the Franco-German border. -Sept 17 to 26: Operation Market Garden, Montgomerys gamble fails -end of Sept: almost all of France, Belgium & Luxemburg have been liberated, Normandy & S. French forces linked up
Battle in the West – D Day & Beyond Closing the noose… -Oct & Nov: spent consolidating supply lines, conquering Alsace-Lorraine & opening Antwerp as a supply port -autumn/winter brings a halt to the advance -Dec 16 to Jan 1: Battle of the Bulge German counterattack through the Ardennes Aimed to capture Antwerp False hopes that the Allies would retreat/split(!) Allied resistance strong after initial surprise American resistance at Bastogne Germans had little in the way of supplies Results: no German reserves, loss of experienced troops, held up Allies for six weeks
Battle in the West – D Day & Beyond The End - Twilight of the Gods -Feb 1945: Allies advance to the Rhine River -March: Allies cross the Rhine in several places -March 19: Hitler orders scorched earth policy, but it is not carried out -Allied advance speeds up: Germans have few units of quality, little in the way of supplies, morale has collapsed -April 25: Western Allies & Russians meet on the River Elbe -April 28: Himmler discredited, April 29: Adm Doenitz appointed Hitlers successor -April 30: Hitler commits suicide in Berlin -May 2: Berlin surrenders to the Russians -May 7: Germany surrenders unconditionally (after trying to arrange a separate peace with the West, but failing)
Battle in the West – D Day & Beyond Aftermath -carving up of Europe: Democracy -v- Communism -distrust of the Allies for each other -Nuremburg Trials
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