Another anniversary: This time it’s the 73rd anniversary of D-Day — the invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944.
It’s no surprise that the German army would have produced a report on the invasion. And it’s no surprise that the Allies would get their hands on a copy, and translate it into English. What’s neat is that the Navy has one on their website. It is dated June 20, 1944, and from the office of Field Marshal Gerd von Rundstedt, then Commander-in-Chief in the west.
I—Four facts which must be emphasized:
(1) The enemy’s complete mastery in the air.
(2) The skillful and large-scale employment of enemy parachute and airborne troops,
(3) The flexible and well-directed support of the land troops by ships’ artillery of strong English naval units ranging from battleship to gunboat.
(4) The rehearsal of the enemy invasion units for their task; most precise knowledge of the coast, of its obstacles and defense establishments, swift building up of superiority in numbers and material on the bridgehead after just a few days.
Opposed to this stands the quality of the German soldier, his steadfastness and his unqualified will to fight to the fast with army, navy and air force.
All three branches of the service have given their best and will continue to give it.
There is, of course, a lot more at the link. No major surprises in the report, but it’s always interesting to see source documents.
As for von Rundstedt, he was dismissed in July but recalled a few months later.