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Posted on Dec 26, 2006 in Armchair Reading, Front Page Features

Interactive Combat Story: First Night in Normandy

By Brandon Neff

26

You quick-time it over the terrain as the first glow of the morning illuminates the eastern horizon.  The constant “whump” of artillery near the beaches is a sober reminder of the magnitude of this entire operation and the events that have yet to play out as the landing crafts approach.

By the time you reach the Douve river, the German 6th Parachute Regiment is rapidly approaching, their objective matching yours.  You urge Greene and the other paratroopers onward and you arrive at the bridges before the Fallschirmjaeger, but only barely.  An intense battle breaks out and your side takes heavy casualties as the Germans siege the bridges with stick grenades and gunfire.  Just when it appears the Germans will force a retreat, another cluster of paratroopers arrive to bolster your ranks and you drive the enemy back.

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The continued arrival of reinforcements secures the objective, although the cost in men was higher than desired.  Nevertheless, the bridges are secured and the men on the beaches now have a route inland!

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