06 giugno 2014

Il giorno più lungo, 70 anni dopo

Forse l'unico modo per comprendere, a distanza di 70 anni, cosa sia successo la mattina del 6 giugno 1944 sulle spiagge della Normandia, è rivedere le foto di Robert Capa scattate nel D-Day.
Sono foto in bianco e nero che raccontano bene del caos dei primi sbarchi, del cielo livido, dei mostri meccanici piazzati nella sabbia di Omaha beach, inventati da Rommel per bloccare gli alleati sulla spiaggia. L'unica strada per bloccare l'invasione.

Queste le memorie del fotografo, sbarcato sulla "easy red beach" assieme al 1 reggimento della 1 divisione di fanteria americana:
"The flat bottom of our barge hit the earth of France," Capa remembered in his book Slightly Out of Focus. "The boatswain lowered the steel-covered barge front, and there, between the grotesque designs of steel obstacles sticking out of the water, was a thin line of land covered with smoke — our Europe, the 'Easy Red' beach.

"My beautiful France looked sordid and uninviting, and a German machine gun, spitting bullets around the barge, fully spoiled my return. The men from my barge waded in the water. Waist-deep, with rifles ready to shoot, with the invasion obstacles and the smoking beach in the background gangplank to take my first real picture of the invasion. The boatswain, who was in an understandable hurry to get the hell out of there, mistook my picture-taking attitude for explicable hesitation, and helped me make up my mind with a well-aimed kick in the rear. The water was cold, and the beach still more than a hundred yards away. The bullets tore holes in the water around me, and I made for the nearest steel obstacle. A soldier got there at the same time, and for a few minutes we shared its cover. He took the waterproofing off his rifle and began to shoot without much aiming at the smoke-hidden beach. The sound of his rifle gave him enough courage to move forward, and he left the obstacle to me. It was a foot larger now, and I felt safe enough to take pictures of the other guys hiding just like I was."

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