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An M8 Greyhound landing in Southern France, Operation Dragoon 1944

An M8 Greyhound being unloaded from an LST during Operation Dragoon.

Operation Dragoon was the Allied invasion of Southern France that took place on 15 August 1944, [N 1] with the aim of opening Marseilles as a supply port.[1]

The Operation

The invasion began with a parachute drop by the 1st Airborne Task Force, and was followed by an amphibious assault by the US Seventh Army and a day later by the First French Army.[N 2] The landings forced the German Army Group G to abandon Southern France and retreat to the Vosges Mountains. Despite liberating Southern France, Operation Dragoon is not well known, as most of the attention is payed to Operation Overlord

Casualties were comparatively light, with the target being secured after only eight days.[1]

Notes

  1. Originally known as Operation Anvil, the Operation had originally been planed to coincide with the Normandy landings, but had to be postponed due to a shortage of landing craft.
  2. These were supplemented at Toulon by the dropping of 600 dummy parachutists, each equipped with a device to mimic small arms fire. The ploy resulted in the Germans devoting time and energy to formulate a response.

Sources

  1. 1.0 1.1 Farrington, Karen. D-Day to Berlin - From the Normandy Landings to the fall of the Reich (70th Anniversary Special Edition). Arcturus Publishing Limited. 2014. ISBN 978 1 78404 052 9 Page 76

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