On June 6, 1944, thousands of U.S., British, Canadian and French troops crossed the English Channel and landed on the beaches of Normandy, France, a pivotal moment in the fight against Nazi Germany. On the 75th anniversary of D-Day, see stunning historic images of the preparation, invasion and aftermath.
AP/U.S. Army Signal Corps Photo
General Dwight D. Eisenhower gives the order of the day, "Full victory - nothing else," to paratroopers somewhere in England, just before they boarded their airplanes to participate in the first assault in the invasion of the continent of Europe, June 6, 1944.
This shows U.S. troops ducking behind bulwark barge landing craft at Normandy.
American Paratroopers fly over the English Channel en route to play a key role in the invasion of France by landing along a 100-mile front of the Normandy coast on June 6, 1944.
In this photo provided by the U.S. Army Signal Corps, U.S. paratroopers fix their static lines before a jump before dawn over Normandy on D-Day, June 6, 1944, in France. The decision to launch the airborne attack in darkness instead of waiting for first light was probably one of the few Allied missteps on June 6, and there was much to criticize both in the training and equipment given to paratroopers and glider-borne troops of the 82nd and 101st airborne divisions. Improvements were called for after the invasion; the hard-won knowledge would be used to advantage later.
In this June 6, 1944 file photo, first wave beach battalion Ducks lay low under the fire of Nazi guns on the beach of southern France on D-Day, June 6, 1944 during World War II. One invader operates a walkie talkie radio directing other landing craft to the safest spots for unloading their troops.
Members of a British special service commando are having their kits checked before leaving for the Allied landing operations of the Normandy coast in France, on June 6, 1944.
This shows U.S. Gen, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Supreme Allied Commander, talking with men of the American Divison D-Day, June 6,1944.
Mushrooms of smoke and flame billow out from the giant USS Nevada as the battleship provides artillery support for Allied ground forces in France by hammering enemy installations from her vantage point in the English Channel, June 6, 1944.
American troops move over the crest of a hill to the interior of Northern France, June 6, 1944.
On June 6, 1944, waves and waves of men swept the Normandy shore.
German prisoners of war are led away by Allied forces from Utah Beach, on June 6, 1944, during landing operations at the Normandy coast, France.
Carrying full equipment, American assault troops move onto a beachhead code-named Omaha Beach, on the northern coast of France on June 6, 1944, during the Allied invasion of the Normandy coast.
British troops make their way through low water and up the beach after leaving landing craft which transported them across the Channel to the Normandy beachhead for the D-Day invasion in France, June 6, 1944, in World War II.
Amphibious trucks known as "ducks" and a half-track follow foot troops ashore during the World War II opening invasion of France on a 100-mile front along the Normandy coast by Allied forces on June 6, 1944.
Men and supplies are ferried out to landing crafts en route to Normandy, June 6, 1944.
Men and assault vehicles storm the beach as Allied landing craft reach their destination during the initial Normandy landing operations in France, on June 6, 1944.