The Yanks In Britain.

by Daniel Russ on August 13, 2013




One of the telltale signs of a military operation is the movement of men and materials. Of course when Eisenhower and his staff planned for Operation Overlord there was no way to hide the transport of 2,000,000 men. The Axis commanders knew the Americans intended to open a second front. Often I wonder why Normandy was called the second front when in 1943 forces were already grinding it out on the way north on the Italian peninsula. Stalin insisted that the Allies keep their promise to invade France by mid 1944 and so the movement of tanks and amphibious vehicles was noticed by spies. The only thing the Germans couldn’t figure out was where the invasion would take place, Normandy or Calais. If it weren’t for the crumbling Eastern Front, the Wehrmacht would have had the resources to stop both possible routes.


The Americans who landed in Britain would face years of hard training. They were not ready to invade, although they didn’t know it at the time. Culturally it was a difficult time for the Brits. They saw these young boys who were going into harm’s way to save them from the most devilish fiend on Earth. They welcomed them into their homes, where they had to be quartered. The Army did not want to put too many tent cities up as they would be prime targets for German bombers and V-1s.


The American soldiers were a handsome lot, hailing from a country and a time when young men were thin and sinewy and healthy. They had a swagger that only Americans brought to the table. And by the way they were in for a lot more than just training. Weekend passes assured GIs that they could go into towns and meet girls. They were handsome. They had cigarettes. They had money, American dollars. They had chocolate. And they had testosterone.


A funny quip emerged:


The problem with the Yanks is that they are over paid, over sexed, and over here.


A funny counter quip emerged from the US:


The problem with the Brits is that they are under paid, under sexed and under Eisenhower.


A confounding cultural difference also blossomed between American men and British women. A British woman would not kiss a man until she was ready to commit to him and to sleep with him.


An American male tried as hard as he could to get a kiss on the first date, if for nothing else but to have something to brag about back at the barracks.


This resulted in a lot of sex.


British women thought the Yanks were hounds.


American men thought British women were easy.


Another interesting phenomenon was racial in nature. In America during the Second World War, a Black man could be beaten for carousing with a White woman. But Britain was an empire. The British were used to seeing people of color from the Indian subcontinent or Pakistan or Jamaica or Africa. It wasn’t that rare to see British nightclubs where Black GIs danced with White women. This is an amazing video.





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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Louis September 28, 2017 at 5:58 am

It was called the Second Front because, until Normandy, the Western Allies only tied down some 10 german divisions in Italy. And the Soviets, even though they were slowly gaining the upper hand on the east front, faced a 100+ german divisions every day. So Stalin could, with some justification, say that the western allies were not taking up their fair share. Apparantly he said something like: the allies will defend their countries to the last drop of russian blood.

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