During World War II, on June 6, 1944 the Normandy beach landings, also known as Operation Overlord, were operations made by the U.S., along with allied forces against the Nazis in France. The invasion was the largest seaborne invasion in history and it contributed to the victory on the Western Front, according to History.com. This date is known as D-Day, even though it doesn’t really stand for anything. “D-Day” means and is used to indicate the start date for specific military field operations. To commemorate the occasion, read on for our top quotes in honor of D-Day.
And what a plan! This vast operation is undoubtedly the most complicated and difficult that has ever occurred.
– Winston Churchill
It was unknowable then, but so much of the progress that would define the 20th century, on both sides of the Atlantic, came down to the battle for a slice of beach only 6 miles long and 2 miles wide.
– President Barack Obama
We know that progress is not inevitable. But neither was victory upon these beaches. Now, as then, the inner voice tells us to stand up and move forward. Now, as then, free people must choose.
– President Bill Clinton
They fight not for the lust of conquest. They fight to end conquest. They fight to liberate.
– President Franklin D. Roosevelt
The day before the anniversary of D-Day, we lost a man who was equaled by few and surpassed by none as a leader in the cause of freedom: Ronald Reagan.
– Mac Thornberry
This operation is not being planned with any alternatives. This operation is planned as a victory, and that’s the way it’s going to be. We’re going down there, and we’re throwing everything we have into it, and we’re going to make it a success.
– General Dwight D Eisenhower
These are the men who took the cliffs. These are the champions who helped free a continent. These are the heroes who helped end a war.
– President Ronald Reagan
Our sons, pride of our nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor, a struggle to preserve our Republic, our religion, and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity.
– Franklin D. Roosevelt
There’s a graveyard in northern France where all the dead boys from D-Day are buried. The white crosses reach from one horizon to the other. I remember looking it over and thinking it was a forest of graves. But the rows were like this, dizzying, diagonal, perfectly straight, so after all it wasn’t a forest but an orchard of graves. Nothing to do with nature, unless you count human nature.
– Barbara Kingsolver
In a brief lull between storms in a remarkably stormy June, even by the standards of Channel weather, the heirs of Harold and the kinsmen of the Conqueror came to Normandy. They were supported by the remnants of their first, North American, empire, the two great nations that they had planted in the New World in the time of Good Queen Bess and James 6th and 1st: the Americans, who had rebelled in the name of the rights of Englishmen, and the Canadians, who had stood loyal in the name of the Crown … The honors of these regiments are ancient and moving: Minden and Malplaquet, Mysore, Badajoz, Waterloo, Inkerman, Gallipoli, the Somme, Imjin. None shines more brightly than Normandy 1944.
– G.M.W. Wemyss
With Thy blessing, we shall prevail over the unholy forces of our enemy. Help us to conquer the apostles of greed and racial arrogances. Lead us to the saving of our country, and with our sister nations into a world unity that will spell a sure peace — a peace invulnerable to the schemings of unworthy men. And a peace that will let all of men live in freedom, reaping the just rewards of their honest toil.
– Franklin D. Roosevelt
The men who died at D-Day did not die shoulder-to-shoulder with their French comrades. They died to liberate the French from a sinister and brutal occupation.
– Michael Korda
If D-Day – the greatest amphibious operation ever undertaken – failed, there would be no going back to the drawing board for the Allies. Regrouping and attempting another massive invasion of German-occupied France even a few months later in 1944 wasn’t an option.
– Douglas Brinkley