Day: May 23, 2019

The mighty word on D-Day
Front Lines

The mighty word on D-Day

The American employed soaring oratory in calling D-Day troops to “the Great Crusade.” The Brit summoned the words of a 17th-century soldier-poet as he urged the “team” on in their “great and righteous cause.” The Canadian, on the other hand, reminded his troops of the “knowledge and experience bought and paid for” by brothers-in-arms who had gone down to abject defeat at Dieppe two years earlier. The generals commanding Allied forces on D-Day took different tacks in their efforts to inspire soldiers boarding ships and aircraft bound for the greatest seaborne invasion the world has ever seen. The invaders were embarking from Portsmouth, England, early on the morning of June 6, 1944—five divisions, or 150,000 ground troops, in an armada of 6,900 vessels landing on five...
Queen Victoria and the growth of Canada
Military Milestones

Queen Victoria and the growth of Canada

May 24 marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Queen Victoria, during whose 63-year reign Canada moved from colony to confederation—mostly peacefully, thanks in large part to her. Perhaps she was predisposed to fondness for the colony, as her father, Edward, Duke of Kent lived in Canada in the 1790s, eventually becoming commander-in-chief of the British North American forces. Prince Edward Island is named for him. In 1837 and 1838, the years Victoria ascended to the throne and was crowned, bloody rebellion was quashed in the British colonies of Lower and Upper Canada (Quebec and Ontario today). Rebels, unhappy with the ruling elite, wanted more control over raising and spending of revenues in their colonies. The ill-organized rebellions were put down by British soldiers and mi...

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An informative primer on Canada’s crucial role in the Normandy landing, June 6, 1944.