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D-Day plus 63 years

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by novelist_wannabe, Jun 6, 2007.

  1. Rusty Shackleford

    Rusty Shackleford Active Member

    I feel lucky to say I've been to both, in the past two years at that. Normandy is indescribable. I want to go back. The holes in the ground where bombs exploded are unbelievable. And the busted bunkers, some of which you can walk through, are amazing. And the drive to the beach from downtown is eery too, thinking of how perilous it must have been for the allied soldiers to march through there given how many hiding places there were for enemies and how generally dangerous it must have been. The whole area is just teeming with historical significance and it's an incredible place for anyone with any appreciation for history.

    Pearl Harbor was interesting, but it just didn't carry the sense of awe with me that Normandy did. I'm not trying to take anything away from the event or the people involved, but I much more enjoyed my time in Normandy. I think maybe it was because at Normandy, seemingly little has changed -- there are battle scars all over the landscape and it was easier for me to picture the events -- to look out over the ocean and picture all the war ships, and look up the beach and picture all the bunkers and defense. But Pearl Harbor is still an active base, and except for the Arizona wreckage, I don't recall there being much left to see. And you're very limited in where you can visit, so it's harder to imagine the chaos -- but you can walk all up and down the beaches at Normandy.
  2. Birdscribe

    Birdscribe Active Member

    And fortunately, because Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain was one of the most underrated badass renaissance men in American History, we'll never know the answer to that question.

    But LJB is right. Had Oates and the Alabamians taken that hill, they wouldn't have had enough men to hold it for more than a few hours at best.
  3. Herbert Anchovy

    Herbert Anchovy Active Member

    birdscribe, I'm treading very carefully here, lest I and my ancestors be called peckerwood racists (turns out they were just dirt-ass country peckerwoods), but Chamblerlain had way enough of the grey matter, 100 times the normal grunt, to milk that event for what it was worth.

    And he did. To his deathbed. Skillfully, sleekly, deftly. Taking nothing away from his achievements and standing, which are unimpeachable.

    My girlfriend (oh, my poor girlfriend) has by association sprouted Civil War geek wings and has become a bit of a Chamberlain officionado. We wrangle about this often. He can do no wrong in her eyes. A transcendent man? No questions asked. But there's a reason he became a chancellor and a politician.
  4. Double J

    Double J Active Member

    My great-great-grandfather was at Port Hudson with the 15th New Hampshire Infantry in 1863. The Rebs had more success holding off the Union Army here than at Vicksburg, which was simultaneously under attack, but they finally did surrender Port Hudson after Vicksburg fell.

    And regarding D-Day....thanks so much to all Allied soldiers, sailors and aircrew who were there, and all who came after. I'm especially proud that the Canadians who went ashore at Juno Beach pushed farther inland than any other force on June 6.
  5. Herbert Anchovy

    Herbert Anchovy Active Member

    Yeah, I'd been waiting for pear-shaped BigDog to chime in about the Canadians' gallantry at the apex of the assault. Not.
  6. http://www.harrypalmergallery.ab.ca/galwarddayvets/galddayvets.html
  7. Lucky Bastard.

    I have an uncle who was one of Merrill's Marauders in Burma.
    Never asked him about his exploits. He's real fond of groping my wife and any other female who comes within five feet of him.
  8. My father was a Naval combat vet of WWII. Two years of convoy duty in the North Stlantic, bombardment groups for North Africa, Sicily, Normandy and, after transferring to the PTO, Okinawa, which he always said was a worse beachhead than Normandy. I have been there. It's scary.
    His great-uncle, in north Kerry, was, by any modern standard, a terrorist.
    Weird, eh?
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