Mar 14th, 2017
On today's episode of the All American Legacy Podcast, we talk about Operation Husky and its aftermath.
The 82ndAirborne Division was still largely an experiment by July 9, 1943 when the Allies invaded Sicily. The invasion, codenamed Operation Husky, was a critical moment for the Division. The fog of war blanketed the island and the airborne assault quickly disintegrated into chaos and then tragedy.
Our Paratroopers were dropped miles away from their designated drop zones. A catastrophic friendly fire incident cut down aircraft and Paratroopers. Once on the ground, the All Americans formed small groups and displayed initiative and courage, allowing the Allies to seize the island. Within this bloody crucible the American Paratrooper Legacy was born.
After Operation Husky, General Eisenhower, Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, had to make a critical decision about the future employment of large airborne forces. Eisenhower considered converting the 82nd into a standard infantry division. The December 1943 Knollwood Maneuvers, a test of a division-level airborne insertion conducted in Moore County, North Carolina, would serve as a deciding factor. Had the maneuvers been unsuccessful, the 82nd Airborne Division would likely not exist today.
This show is produced by the 82nd Airborne Division Public Affairs Office and hosted by Lt. Col. Joe Buccino, Master Sgt. Dan Bailey, Sgt. 1st Class Alex Burnett, and Staff Sgt. Will Reinier.
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