normandy-beach

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Normandy Beaches in 1944 & 70 Years Later

On June 6, 1944, Allied soldiers descended on the beaches of Normandy for D-Day, an operation that turned the tide of the Second World War against the Nazis, marking the beginning of the end of the conflict. Reuters photographer Chris Helgren compiled archive pictures taken during the invasion and went back to the same places to photograph them as they appear today.

More pictures here

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Scenes From D-Day, Then and Now

On June 6, 1944, Allied soldiers descended on the beaches of Normandy for D-Day, an operation that turned the tide of the Second World War against the Nazis, marking the beginning of the end of the conflict. Reuters photographer Chris Helgren compiled archive pictures taken during the invasion and went back to the same places to photograph them as they appear today.

I am the flag of the United States of America
My name is Old Glory.

I fly atop the world’s tallest buildings.
I stand watch in America’s halls of justice.
I fly majestically over great institutes of learning.
I stand guard with the greatest military power in the world.
Look up! And see me!

I stand for peace, honor, truth, and justice.
I stand for freedom.
I am confident … I am arrogant.
I am proud.

When I am flown with my fellow banners,
my head is a little higher,
my colors a little truer.

I bow to no one.
I am recognized all over the world.
I am worshipped.
I am saluted.
I am respected.
I am revered. I am loved.
And I am feared.

I have fought every battle of every war for more than 200 years…
Gettysburg, Shilo, Appomatox, San Juan Hill, the trenches of France,
the Argonne Forest, Anzio, Rome, the beaches of Normandy,
the deserts of Africa, the cane fields of the Philippines,
the rice paddies and jungles of Guam, Okinawa, Japan, Korea, Vietnam,
and a score of places long forgotten by all but those who were with me.

I was there!

I led my soldiers.
I followed them.
I watched over them…
They loved me.
I was on a small hill in Iwo Jima.
I was dirty, battle-worn and tired,
but my soldiers cheered me,
and I was proud.

I have been soiled, burned, torn and trampled on the streets of countries
I have helped set free.
It does not hurt … for I am invincible.
I have been soiled, burned, torn and trampled on the streets of my country,
and when it is by those with whom I have served in battle … it hurts.
But I shall overcome … for I am strong.

I have slipped the bonds of Earth
and stand watch over the uncharted new frontiers of space
from my vantage point on the moon.

I have been a silent witness to all of America’s finest hours.
But my finest hour comes
when I am torn into strips to be used for bandages
for my wounded comrades on the field of battle.
when I fly at half mast to honor my soldiers…
and when I lie in the trembling arms
of a grieving mother at the graveside of her fallen son.

I am proud.
My name is Old Glory.
Dear God … Long may I wave!

Why James Doohan is Important

-stormed the beaches of Normandy on D-day

-shot six times during this battle

-saved from dying because his brother gave him a silver cigarette case, which was in his breast pocket

-while in recovery he stole a plane and drove it between some radio towers to prove it could be done

-he was called the craziest pilot in the Canadian Airforce, but wasn’t even in that branch of military…..

-his Star Trek character was named after himself and the accent he took

-his middle name was Montgomery

-he saved a fan from committing suicide

Everyone, James “Craziest Pilot in the Canadian Airforce” Doohan, the original badass

Today (06.06.17) marks the 73rd anniversary of Operation Overlord, the Allied invasion of Normandy.
On June 6, 1944, more than 160,000 Allied troops landed along a 50-mile stretch of heavily-fortified French coastline, to fight Nazi Germany on the beaches of Normandy, France. Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower called the operation a crusade in which, “we will accept nothing less than full victory.” More than 5,000 Ships and 13,000 aircraft supported the D-Day invasion, and by day’s end, the Allies gained a foot-hold in Continental Europe. The cost in lives on D-Day was high. More than 9,000 Allied Soldiers were killed or wounded, but their sacrifice allowed more than 100,000 Soldiers to begin the slow, hard slog across Europe, to defeat Adolf Hitler’s crack troops.

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D-Day

  • Veterans share a joke as they pose for a photograph in the garden of a house near Caen where they experienced heavy fighting following D-Day in 1944. (Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
  • Owen Butcher, aged 93, and Major Ted Hunt pose in a taxi before setting off to the beaches of Normandy with the Taxi Charity for Military Veterans. (Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
  • Paratrooper Gordon Newton, who was in the 9th battalion, and Geoff Paterson, 9th Para, share a joke as they commemorate the 73rd anniversary of the D-Day landings. (Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
  • Veterans arrive at the Pegasus Bridge Museum for a service to commemorate the 73rd anniversary of the D-Day landings. (Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
  • Joan De-Vall, 92, who was an anti-aircraft height finder and predictor during the war, holds a wreath onboard the Brittany cross-channel ferry Normandie. (Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
  • Military veterans and passengers gather for a wreath-laying ceremony at sea. (Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
4

The Non-German defenders of the Atlantic Wall,

In 1942 Germany began construction of the Atlantic Wall in order to defends its World War II territorial conquests from a possible Allied amphibious invasion.  The wall consisted of various fortifications, mines, tank barriers, mortars, artillery pieces, machine gun nests, pillboxes, and bunkers, and was designed to fend off any beach landing. On June 6th, 1944 Allied forces landed on the beaches of Normandy and quickly overran these defenses.  Thousands of German soldiers were captured, but surprisingly still many of those capture were not German at all.

At the very beginning of the war Germany upheld its Nazi belief in pure Arianism. However as the war dragged, that sentiment quickly gave way as casualties grew and manpower shortages worsened. Both the Wehrmacht and the SS began to accept foreign volunteers.  Many of these foreign troops were sent to man the defenses of the Atlantic Wall.  These soldiers came from all over Europe, and even the Middle East and Asia.  One notable extreme was the Indian Legion, also known as the Azad Regiment, which consisted of volunteers from India who believed that a German victory would secure India’s independence from the British Empire. 

The reasons for volunteering were varied, some political, many as a necessity for survival.  By far the most numerous foreign volunteers were those from the Soviet Union. Some volunteered because they were disgruntled with Soviet rule, for example the Russian Liberation Army, which joined the Wehrmacht to oppose communism in Russia. However most volunteered as an alternative to spending the rest of the war as a POW.  Soviet POW’s were treated terribly during the war, with 3.3 to 3.5 million dying of starvation, disease, exhaustion, and overall maltreatment. For many Soviet POW’s, service with the German Army was the only way to avoid such a horrible fate. Typically, these troops were often not very reliable in combat. Understandably, they were not very motivated to sacrifice life and limb for their conquerors. In some cases they proved to by a grave liability, such as the case of a battalion of soldiers from Georgia which manned the Atlantic Wall defenses on the Dutch island of Texel, who in 1945 openly rebelled against the Germans.

As well as many thousand foreign volunteers, there were also many thousand foreign conscripts who were forcibly made to serve in the German Army. By far the most interesting extreme in this instance were a group of Koreans who were captured by American forces during the D-Day invasion. For three decades Japan had occupied Korea, and the men were forcibly conscripted into the Japanese Imperial Army. In 1939 Japan attempted to invade the Soviet Union through Mongolia, but were badly beaten at the Battle of Khalkhin Gol. The Koreans were captured and sent to the gulags, but with the German invasion of the Soviet Union, were then forced to join the Red Army and fight on the Eastern Front.  They were then captured by the Germans, conscripted into the German Army, and forced to man the defenses of the Atlantic Wall at Normandy.

By far the most numerous conscripts were Polish.  Before World War I many parts of Poland had been a part of Prussia, and later the German Empire. When Germany re-conquered these territories they considered many of the people living there to be ethnic Germans.  As such, they were considered full citizens of the Reich and thus were subject to German draft laws.  Many still believed themselves to be German and thus were willing to fight for the German cause, however many spoke Polish, had adopted Polish customs, and believed themselves to be Poles. Regardless, refusing to obey the draft laws could result in serious consequences, not only for the individual but his family as well. Some 500,000 Poles were conscripted into the Wehrmacht, with many serving on the Atlantic Wall. Like the Soviets, the Polish also were not the best soldiers as they were often unwilling to fight for their taskmasters. Around 85,000 would defect to the Free Polish Forces in France. In addition to Polish Troops, a number of Czechs considered ethnic Germans would be conscripted as well.

Overall, one in six defenders of the Atlantic Wall were not German. Nothing demonstrates the diversity of these defenders more than the photo below of a group Wehrmacht soldiers captured during D-Day

Front Row (from left to right):  a Yugoslav; an Italian; a Turk; a Pole

Back Row (from left to right): a German; a Czech; a Russian who was forced into the army when the Nazis occupied his town; and a Mongolian.

anonymous asked:

Hi! I'm writing a story about a nearly 2,000 year old Vampire scout and his enthusiastic human apprentice. I'm having trouble making them interact comically, without having to completely throw away the stoic Vampires character. Any advice?

Hi!

You could argue that just the enthusiasm mixed with the stoic personality itself invites comedy, without you having to put in any special effort. The vampire will often be irritated with his apprentice, and the apprentice will probably often be fascinated by who he works for and the fact that he was fortunate enough to snag this job. If you really want to make some funny conversation, you could make your apprentice a history buff – the vampire will likely have been around for a lot of history, and his apprentice could constantly ask him about what happened when US troops stormed the beaches at Normandy and if Napoleon was really only about 4′11″ and if Greek cities smelled bad because they didn’t have indoor plumbing.

Also, your vampire would probably be cynical, after living so long and seeing humans do so many despicable things, and he’d probably feel intellectually superior to his enthusiastic, optimistic apprentice. He might even hold his apprentice in contempt, because he might think of his apprentice as a fool. 

I can also give you a couple of dialogue prompts to start you off!

****

“Hi! What’s on the schedule for today?”

[Your vampire] hissed and backed away. “Did you have garlic for lunch again?”

“Oh shit! Yeah, I did.”

“You idiot!”

****

A knock at the door brought [your vampire] out of his thoughts. “What?”

[Your apprentice] walked in, holding a history textbook. “Sorry, I hate to interrupt you, but I have this really important question that really can’t wait and I-”

“Get on with it.”

“So, was Cleopatra really all that stunningly beautiful? Or did she just have a great personality?”

****

“You know, it’s humans like you that make me wonder why I stick around.”

[Your apprentice] laughed. “Don’t be stupid! You stick around because you have to. You can’t die, remember?”

“Oh yes, my immortality slipped my mind. Thank you ever so much for reminding me, how would I have remembered without you?”

“… Is that sarcasm?”

****

I hope this helps! If you need anything else, please feel free to ask. - @authors-haven

5

73rd Anniversary of the D-Day Landings in Normandy

June 6th marks the 73rd anniversary of the D-Day landings which saw 156,000 troops from the allied countries including the United Kingdom and the United States join forces to launch an audacious attack on the beaches of Normandy. Many people gather each year in Normandy to mark the anniversary of World War II’s D-Day landing. (Getty)

Photography by Chesnot/Getty Images and Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images

See more photos from Anniversary and our other slideshows on Yahoo News.

3

Scenes From D-Day, Then and Now

On June 6, 1944, Allied soldiers descended on the beaches of Normandy for D-Day, an operation that turned the tide of the Second World War against the Nazis, marking the beginning of the end of the conflict. Reuters photographer Chris Helgren compiled archive pictures taken during the invasion and went back to the same places to photograph them as they appear today.

anonymous asked:

but is jean moreau an art hoe??? does he love writing??poetry??what's his major?? is he into science??will he cover up his tattoo or will he get it removed?? WHAT'S HIS RELATIONSHIP TO FRANCE ,,,does he like Jeremy's parents,,, bee, PlS give us the sequel of ur jean moreau hcs (the more random the better )after u feel better !!!💖💖get well sooooon

IM ALIVE (mostly)

  • jean is halfway through his raven-approved sports science degree, so he sticks with it at usc because it’s too much effort to change. he doesn’t care at all about it, and won’t ever use it, but he’s a solid b student
  • he’s really super clueless about doing things for pleasure when he arrives in california (hobbies are for other people, not for ravens, and especially not for him). he really likes to read though, especially fiction - fantasy, sci fi, stuff like that
  • (remember how he canonically calls kevin’s history books boring. iconic, tbh)
  • he likes to go to art museums. it’s quiet and he can look at stuff and just be. still. laila goes with him because jeremy has the attention span of a happy dog most of the time and starts crawling the walls after a half hour, which jean does NOT appreciate
  • jeremy likes to watch movies, and jean is happy to sit with him but he’s picky about what they watch because he finds them triggering quite a lot. thankfully jeremy generally likes to watch disney films and romances, because he just likes to relax while they’re on. if he wants to watch anything else, he does it with Laila, who is a complete movie buff
  • jean doesn’t like to get up early. that’s because he sleeps best when the sun is already up, but eventually it just turns to him enjoying sleeping as much as he likes
  • jean leaves the tattoo on his face. it’s just another scar
  • he gets more tattoos, delicate blackwork that hide under his clothes for the most part. feathers on his shoulders, a heart in lace between his shoulder blades, an enclosed circle of night sky on his chest, a partridge flying from an open cage on his thigh. they’re not secrets, but they’re his, just like the rest of his body
  • jean doesn’t remember much of france and what he does remember is intrinsically tied up with his parents (not fond memories) so he mostly doesn’t think about it. i think he goes back one day though, to reclaim it for himself as an inextricable part of his history, and he ends up falling in love with it when he does
  • (picture: jean moreau speaking french because there’s no one left alive to stop him, dragging along his boyfriend who mostly has to communicate via charades in the little towns outside of paris where no one cares to speak english. standing wind-whipped on a beach in normandy laughing at jeremy as he shivers in a lot of layers because “france is meant to be warm jean”. eating pastries each morning, and going down to the patisserie to pick them up. exploring paris (holding hands). not going anywhere near jean’s family because why would they, really. going to marseille anyway because he belongs there as much as they do)
  • jean is terrified of making a bad impression with jeremy’s parents, so he’s completely over-the-top polite and awkward at first. they like him anyway, because, though neither of them know it, they aren’t that quiet when they talk out on the front porch on summer nights, and their conversation is audible through bug screen, you know, if someone happened to be standing there. jean doesn’t trust them for a long time, but he kinda likes them anyway
  • jeremy’s dad likes to read the same genres as jean. they recommend books to each other. he’s one of the few people jean communicates with outside of the team. they email
  • jeremy’s mom always coerces jean into helping cook when he’s around, because he’s useless and she wants to make sure he has some life skills when he graduates. she does not tell jean this. jeremy does, though
  • jean likes cats. jeremy jokes that jean is catlike because he likes to nap in the sun. they get a cat at some point. jean jokes that they don’t need to get a dog because jeremy is a golden retriever. alvarez laughs so hard she chokes