Thursday, April 4, 2019

Weather As A Force at D-Day-- Part 2: What's In A Forecast?

Group Captain James Stagg of the RAF met with Eisenhower on the evening of 4 June and told the commander that weather conditions on the 6th would be good enough for the invasion.  The next dates that would be good for the landings would be two weeks later from 18-20 June.

Waiting until then, however, would mean recalling  the men and ships already in position to cross the English Channel.  Plans of the invasion then might get out to the Germans, not to mention major grumbling  on the part of the men.

After much discussion, Eisenhower decided to go ahead with June 6.  Hood thing because a major storm battered the Normandy coast June 19-22.  The landings could not have occurred.

Allied control of the Atlantic Ocean also meant that German meteorologists had less information than the Allies about the weather.  The Luftwaffe meteorological center in Paris had predicted two weeks of stormy weather.  German military leaders left their posts and unites were sent home on leave.

Overall German commander, Gen. Erwin Rommel  returned to Germany for his wife's birthday and to meet with Hitler about obtaining more Panzer tanks.


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