Thursday, June 05, 2014

Lest we forget

I'm sure that my parents heard the sombre announcement by John Snagge (link) on the BBC Home Service seventy years ago, although as a happy four-year-old living in Braemar on Royal Deeside I was blissfully unaware of such momentous events. With one sentence, the Supreme Headquarters of the Allied Expeditionary Forces confirmed the German report of the invasion that would involve 156,000 Allied troops, 5,000 ships and landing craft, 50,000 vehicles and 11,000 airplanes.

Reading the report in New York, NBC correspondent Robert St. John said: “Men and women of the United States, this is a momentous hour in world history. This is the invasion of Hitler’s Europe, the zero hour.”

How quite extraordinary, then, that seven decades later I would be looking back and realizing that I have lived for longer in Germany than in any other country.

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