Using numerous interviews made by Army historians soon after the battle for Omaha Beach as well as maps and medal citations, the author constructs a raw, first-hand recounting of one of the most costly one-day combats of World War II. Focus is almost exclusively on the single day of June 6, 1944, taking the reader from the failed pre-dawn bombing campaigns to the devastating fire encountered by the first assault units, to the close infighting within small hamlets and dense hedgerows at the end of the day. Two things I take away from this account are the resiliency, courage and resourcefulness of the troops, and the pervasive constant foreboding they felt that the Germans would counter-attack and push them off the beach before it was secured. Sixty-five years after the fact, this book is a stark reminder that to the soldiers on the beach the final outcome of this assault was far from pre-ordained.
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Omaha Beach by Joseph Balkoski
by Hal on November 17th, 2009