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Logistics, strategy, and what might have been: a key D-Day target in context

On 6th June 1944 British, American, Canadian and French troops landed in Normandy by air and sea. This was one of the key moments of the Second World War, a long anticipated invasion which would, ultimately, lead to the defeat of Nazi Germany. By the day's end a lodgement had been effected and Operation Overlord was being hailed as a success. In reality the assault had produced mixed results and at certain points along the French coastline the position was still far from certain. The key Allied objectives had also not been captured during the first day of the fighting and this failure would have long-term consequences. Of the priority targets, the city of Caen was a vital logistical hub with its road and rail networks plus it would also act as a critical axis for launching the anticipated follow-on attacks against the German defenders. As a result an entire brigade of British troops was tasked with attempting its capture but their advance culminated a few miles short. This new book will examine this significant element of the wider D-Day operation. It will do this by examining in some detail the planning, preparation and then the actual attack that was made at Sword beach, the point at which the British brigade landed, but with a specific emphasis attached to the potential for a drive on Caen. To do this it will examine the previously published material whilst also drawing on a wealth of archival sources many of which have been previously overlooked. This study will enable the identification of the key factors behind the failure to capture the city and also consider whether it might have been possible and what consequences this would have had for the subsequent Battle of Normandy.

The book is made up of ten chapters: The Plan; The Preparations; The Defenders; The Airborne Prologue; The Landings; The Morning; The Afternoon; The Evening; The Next Day; The Consequences, with a text supported by photographs and, importantly, specially-commissioned colour battle maps.

  • AUTHOR: Stewart, A
  • FORMAT: 184pp 50 Bw 8 col maps 234x156 Hb
  • Code: 16747

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