June 6th, 1944 by Mark Steyn


There were five beaches: two for the Americans, three for the British Commonwealth. The Yanks, under General Omar Bradley, got Utah and Omaha; under Lieutenant-General Sir Miles Dempsey, the UK got Sword and Gold, and the Canadians Juno. But there were all kinds of other forces to hand, too. President Reagan caught something of the sweep of it in his marvelous Pointe du Hoc speech thirty-five years ago on the fortieth anniversary:

All of these men were part of a roll call of honor with names that spoke of a pride as bright as the colors they bore; the Royal Winnipeg Rifles, Poland's 24th Lancers, the Royal Scots Fusiliers, the Screaming Eagles, the Yeomen of England's armored divisions, the forces of Free France, the Coast Guard's 'Matchbox Fleet,' and you, the American Rangers.