D-Day: June 6, 1944 -- The Climactic Battle of WWII

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Simon and Schuster, Jun 6, 1994 - History - 655 pages
7 Reviews
On the basis of 1,400 oral histories from the men who were there, Eisenhower biographer and World War II historian Stephen E. Ambrose reveals for the first time anywhere that the intricate plan for the invasion of France in June 1944, had to be abandoned before the first shot was fired. The true story of D-Day, as Ambrose relates it, is about the citizen soldiers - junior officers and enlisted men - taking the initiative to act on their own to break through Hitler's Atlantic Wall when they realized that nothing was as they had been told it would be. This is a brilliant telling of the battles of Omaha and Utah beaches, based on information only now available, from American, British, Canadian, French, and German veterans, from government and private archives, from never before utilized sources on the home front, gathered and analyzed by the author, who has made D-Day his life work. Ambrose's first interview was with General Eisenhower in 1964, his last with paratroopers from the 101st Airborne in 1993. Called the premier American narrative and military historian, Ambrose explains the most important day of the twentieth century. The action begins at midnight, June 5/6, when the first British and American airborne troops jumped into France to launch the invasion. It ends at midnight, June 6/7. Focusing on those pivotal twenty-four hours, this is the story of individuals rather than units. It moves from the level of Supreme Commander to that of a French child, from General Omar Bradley to an American paratrooper, from Field Marshal Montgomery to a British private, from Field Marshal Rommel to a German sergeant. Ambrose covers the politics of D-Day, from Churchill's resistance to theoperation to Stalin's impatience and Roosevelt's concern. On the other side were Hitler's command structure, German policy, and the plot against the Fuhrer. This is the epic victory of democracy in winner-take-all combat.
 

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D-DAY, JUNE 6, 1944: The Climactic Battle of World War II

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A splendid, moving, and authoritative account of the most decisive day of WW II by Ambrose (History/Univ. of New Orleans), whose massive biographies of Eisenhower and Nixon have won widespread praise ... Read full review

Excellent

User Review  - FabledRunner - Borders

A phenomenal book. Incredible detail with hundreds of personal stories and accounts from the men who were there on D-Day. It is almost as if Ambrose ran out of room to write. The stories included will ... Read full review

All 5 reviews »

Contents

Prologue
19
The Defenders
27
The Attackers
39
The Commanders
58
Where and When?
71
Utilizing Assets
90
Planning and Preparing
107
Training
130
The 116th Regiment at Omaha
321
Utter Chaos Reigned
346
Traffic Jam
361
I Am a Destroyer Man
381
Will You Tell Me How We Did This?
398
Up the Bluff at Vierville
418
Struggle for the High Ground
451
It Was Just Fantastic
474

Marshaling and Briefing
151
Loading
166
Decision to Go
178
Cracking the Atlantic Wall
196
Lets Get Those Bastards
225
The Greatest Show Ever Staged
239
A Long Endless Column of Ships
254
Well Start the War from Right Here
276
The 4th Division at Utah Beach
277
Nous Restons Ici
294
Visitors to Hell
320
The World Holds Its Breath
486
Fairly Stuffed with Gadgets
509
Everything Was Well Ordered
519
Payback
531
An Unforgettable Sight
549
My God Weve Done It
567
When Can Their Glory Fade?
576
Glossary
585
Bibliography
613
Index
633
Copyright

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About the author (1994)

Dr. Stephen Ambrose was a renowned historian and acclaimed author of more than thirty books. Among his New York Times bestsellers are Nothing Like It in the World, Citizen Soldiers, Band of Brothers, D-Day - June 6, 1944, and Undaunted Courage. Dr. Ambrose was a retired Boyd Professor of History at the University of New Orleans and a contributing editor for the Quarterly Journal of Military History. He also participated in numerous national television programs, including shows appearing on the History Channel and National Geographic.

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