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Sands Of Time: The Geology of D-Day

June 6, 2019

The Rant Foundry

The Rant Foundry Presents: A Special D-Day 75th Anniversary Edition
By JF Dowsett

The June 6, 1944 Allied invasion of France – known as D-Day – was a turning point in the European theater of the Second World War. Upon landing on a 50-mile stretch of Normandy coastline, 150,000 American, Canadian and British soldiers faced the Atlantic Wall, a complex defensive system of fortifications, bunkers, minefields and trenches. Between 1942 and 1944, Nazi Germany had reinforced her European coastal flanks, stationing thousands of troops along the way.

Tschechenigel (Czech hedgehog) at Pas de Calais (image via bunkervliegtuigarcheo.com)

Nearly 10,000 men died that day.

In 1988, American scientists Earle F. McBride and M. Dane Picard visited the infamous Omaha Beach section of the Normandy coast and sampled the sands for microscopic analysis. As they were to write later, “there is more to the legacy than just the memorials: The sand at…

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