Before and After D-Day: Color Photos From England and France

Masterfully restored color photos from England and France in 1944 feel at-once profoundly familiar and utterly, vividly new

It’s no mystery why images of unremitting violence spring to mind when one hears the deceptively simple term, “D-Day.” We’ve all seen — in photos, movies and old news reels, most of them routinely presented in suitably grim black-and-white — what happened on the beaches of Normandy (codenamed Omaha, Utah, Juno, Gold and Sword) as the Allies unleashed their historic assault against German defenses on June 6, 1944. The fury of the monumental attack was matched only by the ferocity of the sustained, withering counterstrike.

But in color photos taken before and after the invasion, LIFE magazine’s Frank Scherschel captured countless other, lesser-known scenes from the run-up to the onslaught and the heady weeks after: American troops training in small English towns; the French countryside, implausibly lush after the spectral landscape of the beachheads; the reception GIs enjoyed en route to the capital; the jubilant liberation of Paris itself.

As presented here, in masterfully restored color, Scherschel’s pictures — most of which were never published in LIFE — feel at-once profoundly familiar and somehow utterly, vividly new.

Finally: Information on specific locations or people in these photographs is not always available; Scherschel and his colleagues did not always provide that data for every one of the many thousands of pictures they made throughout the war. When a locale or person depicted is known, that is noted in the caption.

[WATCH: 'Behind the Picture: Robert Capa's D-Day']

TIME Turkey

3 Arrested for Negligence After Turkey Mine Explosion

Akin Celik
Police and paramilitary-police officers escort Akin Celik, the mining company's operations manager, center right, and two other mining officials en route to prison in the Turkish coal-mining town of Soma on May 18, 2014 Emre Tazegul—AP

They may face three- to 15-year sentences; 19 suspects are still in custody following a mine explosion that killed more than 300 people

Three people have been arrested on negligence charges following a Turkish mining explosion that killed 301 people earlier this week, a prosecutor said during a Sunday press conference.

The three were also charged with causing the death of more than one person, though intent is not implied in the charge. Turkey’s penal code states that such charges can lead to prison sentences of between three and 15 years.

Prosecutor Bekir Sahiner said that one of the people arrested was the operations manager of the company that oversees the mine, the Associated Press reports.

Six of the 25 people initially detained after the explosion have been released, Sahiner said.

The mining company and the Turkish government have both said the mine was properly inspected and that negligence was not to blame. However, public outcry over the disaster has led officials to promise a thorough investigation, as poor safety conditions in Turkey’s mining industry have made accidents a common occurrence.


TIME Serbia

Thousands Flee Deadly Floods in Serbia and Bosnia

A Serbian rescue worker carries an elderly woman out of her flooded house in the Serbian village of Obrez on May 17, 2014 Sasa Djordjevic—AFP/Getty Images

Floods have killed at least 44 people and caused some 10,000 to evacuate from the affected areas, while some towns have been completely cut off following the region's heaviest rainfall since the late 19th century

Thousands of people have fled their homes in Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina as massive floods fueled by record rainfall have already killed at least 44 people, officials say, and as residents have been warned about land mines exposed by mudslides.

Approximately 10,000 people have been evacuated from the affected areas, while some towns have been completely cut off by the deluge that hit the region’s Sava River, Agence France-Presse reports.

“We sent rescue teams into a part of the city we had not been able to access so far. They are entering those areas fearing what they might discover,” said Samo Minic, the mayor of the Bosnian town of Samac.

One rescue worker who spent two days trying to reach the Serbian village of Krupanj described the floods as looking “like a tsunami and earthquake occurred at once.”

“We found some 50 people gathered in the highest house,” Nedeljko Brankovic said. “They had neither electricity nor drinking water. Telephones did not work. We evacuated them 10 by 10 in a huge boat.”

Twenty-seven deaths have been reported in Bosnia, 16 reported in Serbia and one reported in Croatia. Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said he expected the death toll to rise.

In addition to the floods, the rainfall led to destructive landslides and warnings that residents should beware of exposed landmines first buried during fighting and warfare in the 1990s.


TIME China

This Might Be the Most Beautiful Buffalo in the World

A woman leads her painted buffalo onto a stage during a buffalo bodypainting competition in Jiangcheng county, Yunnan province
A woman leads her painted buffalo onto a stage during a buffalo bodypainting competition in Jiangcheng county, Yunnan province, China, May 18, 2014. Artists from eight countries painted on buffalos to compete for a 100,000 yuan ($16,042) prize reward during the competition on Sunday, according to local media. Wong Campion—Reuters

Artists from eight countries covered buffalo in vivid colors as a part of a body-painting competition this weekend

Those large, brown, beastly masses known as buffalo are rarely described as pretty, but this weekend a lucky few of them became works of art that would make all the others jealous.

Competing in a buffalo body-painting competition in the Jiancheng county of China’s Yunnan province, artists from eight different countries decked out the animals in wild patterns as they competed Sunday for bragging rights and a 100,00 yuan ($16,042) prize.

TIME Syria

Senior Syrian Officer Killed in Clashes Near Damascus

A high-ranking Syrian military officer died near Damascus Sunday after clashes between government forces and rebel groups aligned against President Bashar Assad.

Lt. Gen. Hussein Ishaq, head of Syria’s Air Defense, was one of the few senior military officers to be killed in more than three years of fighting. The loss has little strategic impact, as Syria’s air defenses have not played a large role in a war against ground-based rebels equipped with few anti-aircraft weapons and no air assets. Still, the fact that the armed opposition was able to penetrate a well-defended base was a potent reminder that the fighting continues just outside the capital’s security bubble, despite many Syrians’ assertion that the war is in its waning days.

Ishaq’s death comes just three weeks before Syria’s presidential elections are set to take place. Assad, who has already held two seven-year terms based on national referendums, will be running opposed for the first time. He has built his campaign on a promise of military victory and quick reconstruction. The raid, along with Ishaq’s death, is unlikely to affect an election stacked in Assad’s favor, but it does put in doubt the government’s pledge to secure Damascus and its suburbs before the end of the year. The south and eastern suburbs of Damascus have been a source of regular mortar attacks on the capital for nearly two years; on Wednesday night a mortar round landed on a house near the center of the city, severely wounding two people.

For Damascus residents, the ongoing mortar barrage is justification for the government’s continued shelling of the rebellious suburbs, even when civilians are caught in the crossfire. The death of a senior commander who had little to do with the fight against the armed opposition is likely to cement the perception among Assad loyalists that the rebels deserve no mercy, making a violent war even deadlier yet.

TIME North Korea

North Korean Officials Apologize for Apartment Collapse

Senior officials from the usually secretive government took responsibility for Tuesday’s collapse of an apartment building in the capital of Pyongyang containing approximately 92 families

North Korean officials made a rare apology Sunday by taking responsibility for a recent apartment building collapse in the capital of Pyongyang, state news agency KCNA reported.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un “sat up all night, feeling painful” after he was informed about the accident, Agence France-Press reports via KCNA. North Korea’s minister of people’s security and chief secretary of the city committee of the ruling Workers’ Party were among the officials who made public apologies over the incident.

South Korean officials told the AFP that the 23-story apartment building contained about 92 families when it collapsed Tuesday. The number of resulting deaths remains unknown.

North Korean authorities told KCNA that “irresponsible” supervision was to blame for the collapse.

It’s common practice in North Korea for families to be moved into apartment buildings before they’re finished being built, AFP reports.


TIME Nigeria

West African Leaders Agree on Plan to ‘Crush’ Boko Haram

Paris Summit for safety in Nigeria  AT  The Elysee Palace
From left: Niger's President Mahamadou Issoufou, Cameroon's President Paul Biya, Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan, French President François Hollande, Chad's President Idriss Déby and Benin's President Thomas Boni Yayi attend a joint press conference at the Élysée Palace in Paris on May 17, 2014 Thierry Chesnot—Getty Images

Five West African nations, the U.S., U.K. and France came together Saturday to coordinate a multistate crackdown on Boko Haram, the extremist Islamist group which abducted more than 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria last month

The U.S. joined five West African nations, France and the U.K. on Saturday to coordinate a multistate crackdown on Boko Haram, the extremist Islamist group that abducted more than 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria last month.

At a meeting in Paris organized by French President François Hollande, heads of state of Cameroon, Niger, Chad, Benin and Nigeria met to discuss a medium- to long-term plan on sharing surveillance information, intelligence and military resources, the New York Times reports. U.S. and E.U. representatives also attended.

The summit was requested by President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria. “Without West African countries coming together, we will not be able to crush these terrorists,” Jonathan said. Cameroonian President Paul Biya said, “We are here to declare war on Boko Haram,” according to the BBC, while President Idriss Déby of Chad said it would be “total war.”

Until Saturday’s meeting, there had been little cooperation between the West African nations, and their borders are porous to insurgents moving from one country to another.

Boko Haram most recently on Friday attacked a camp run by a Chinese engineering company in northern Cameroon, near Nigeria’s border, abducting 10 Chinese, the BBC reports.

Boko Haram kidnapped over 200 schoolgirls on April 14, spurring an international outcry against the extremist Islamist group. The U.S. has pledged to assist with reconnaissance and intelligence but stopped short of offering military support.


TIME India

A Quick Guide to India’s Next Prime Minister

On the news that Narendra Modi will be India’s next Prime Minister, the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE Sensex) experienced its biggest gains in five years.

The market leaped on the election of the tea vendor turned politician due to his stellar track record increasing the economy of his state Gujarat by 10% annually. Many hope he can do the same for the nation’s economy as a whole.

But Modi comes with some baggage. In 2002, religious riots in Gujarat left more than a thousand Muslims dead, on his watch. Modi has been cleared by the Indian Supreme Court of any blame, but remains a controversial figure despite his economic knowhow.

TIME Military

Let’s Celebrate Armed Forces Day… By Building a New Pentagon from the Ground Up


Sometimes it’s easier to start from scratch

The unceremonious firing of the New York Times’ top editor last Wednesday helped push into public view a tough assessment on the future of newspapers in a digital world—and just how challenging it can be to change an existing structure into something new.

If you think it’s tough in the newspaper business, imagine how hard it is for the Department of Defense.

The Pentagon is on call 24/7. The nation doesn’t have the luxury of trading it in for a new model, like you might do with a car. You’ve got to keep the old one humming along, while nurturing its evolution into something better-suited for the information—instead of the industrial—age.

But seeing as this is the weekend—and Saturday is Armed Forces Day, no less—what if we were able to start with a fresh slate and build a new American military from the ground up? How close would it resemble what we’ve already got?

Not much, according to the recommendations of Shawn Brimley and Paul Scharre, a pair of ex-Pentagon officials now at the influential Center for a New American Security think tank. They’ve posted a provocative piece over at the Foreign Policy website entitled CTRL + ALT + DELETE—Resetting America’s Military. Among other radical ideas, they’re proposing doing away with the Army, Navy, Air Force and, God forfend, the Marines.

They’d replace them with expeditionary corps (civil-affairs types and others who partner with allies abroad), operator corps (the ones who do the shooting, on land, sea and sky), cyber corps (the computer geeks), and commando corps (who’d rescue hostages, kill Osama bin Ladens and corral loose nukes).

“Unlike today’s military services, the corps would not own forces but would only manage personnel,” they propose. “Standards for recruiting, physical fitness, education, and even ideal personality traits would vary among them.”

They elaborate:

In our vision, the military would be organized around its three overarching missions: defend the homeland, defeat adversaries, and maintain a stabilizing presence abroad — themes that run through defense strategy documents over the last quarter-century, regardless of presidential administration…We would invest more in robotics systems of all kinds, protect existing special operations and cyberspace capabilities, and reduce less relevant capabilities like short-range aircraft and tanks…

New recruitment tools would allow the hiring of midcareer professionals who have skills in key areas, like cybersecurity and economic development…We would institute a true volunteer force, whereby those in uniform would owe a certain amount of time to the military based on training received. If they chose to leave early — which they would be free to do — they would have to reimburse the government for the cost of the training they had acquired at taxpayer expense…

The military’s anachronistic class division into officers and enlisted personnel, more suitable for 18th-century Britain than 21st-century America, would be redefined. No corporation that placed 22-year-old college graduates directly into middle management could survive, and we would institute a more sensible leadership model based on experience and ability.

But you may not want to spend too much of Armed Forces Day weekend pondering their proposal. “The one thing that we know about this idea is that it’s never going to happen,” says David Rothkopf, Foreign Policy’s editor. “It would involve confronting moneyed, entrenched interests in the private sector as well as the Pentagon, which kills ideas that threaten its core programs more efficiently than it does any foreign enemy. This is the military-industrial complex that Dwight Eisenhower warned us about as he prepared to leave office—except today it is bigger and more powerful than it has ever been.”

Of course, if you think these guys are full of beans, check out Jay Nordlinger’s piece in the latest National Review: Ike as Weapon—The use and abuse of Eisenhower’s Farewell Address, with its warning about the ‘military-industrial complex’.

“It’s always a tricky business to try to speak for the dead, or to claim to do so,” Nordlinger says. “But given everything we know about Eisenhower, I believe he would be in the camp of those who say our defenses are dangerously low, inviting of aggression.”

And if you think he’s full of baloney, here’s that passage from Eisenhower’s January 17, 1961, address for which the Army-five-star-general-turned-President is best remembered. It makes for good reading on Armed Forces Day—or any other.

TIME faith

Sudan’s Real Crisis Is the Disregard for Female Life

The death sentence for a pregnant Sudanese woman who refuses to renounce her Christian faith shows that the government's depravity extends far beyond religion and deep into the heart of humanity.

The world was shaken by the news Thursday that a pregnant woman was sentenced to death for apostasy. Meriam Yehya Ibrahim is eight months pregnant, and because she will not renounce her Christian faith, she will be hanged soon after she gives birth. In Sudan, children must be raised the religion of their father. The government claims that because Ibrahim’s father was a Muslim, she must remain so and her marriage to a Christian man is invalid.

Meriam Yehya Ibrahim’s story resonates with everything I’ve experienced in my 10 years of working in Sudan and South Sudan. Ibrahim’s story reminds me of a dear friend of mine, Mary Achai, whose Muslim slave master set her on fire, along with three of her children, because she ran away when she learned that he planned to sell her 10-year-old daughter as a virgin bride. Although Mary is permanently marred inside and out, she survived the fire. Her 10-year-old daughter, toddler and nursing baby did not.

Rightly so, much emphasis is being given to the fact that Ibrahim’s sentence of death is in retaliation of her choice to be Christian. However, fundamentally, the crisis in Sudan is not one of religion but rather a complete disregard for the dignity of life, especially female life.

I know Muslim women in South Sudan who the Islamic Janjaweed raped with sticks as they mocked, “This is so you cannot make black babies.” I know men who’ve been beaten, had their teeth knocked out and forced to swallow them and had limbs hacked off as they watched their wives and children dragged behind the tail of a horse into slavery because their skin was black instead of the beautiful bronze color of their Arab-descendant fellow countrymen. I know a beautiful young schoolteacher whose father forced her to leave her job to marry a man who already had four wives so that he could garner a few more cows. I’ve sat through bomb blitzes targeted at the indigenous people of the Nuba Mountains, which is largely Islamic, simply because they are black and yet dare to proclaim their right to life, liberty and the use of their homeland’s natural resources.

The depravity of the Sudanese government extends far beyond religion and deep into the heart of humanity. A people will not truly have freedom of religion unless it is built upon a foundation of the sanctity of life.

I find myself cheering for Ibrahim as a thundercloud of hope, proclaiming “Life is worth dying for.” Mohamed Jar Elnabi, her attorney, echoes the sonorous claps of Ibrahim’s life as he endures death threats, social castigation, and financial hardship for defending her.

From half a world away, it is tempting to turn our faces away from Ibrahim and Elnabi, but in so doing we would be turning our backs upon our own human dignity. There may be no financial incentive to pursue the arrest of Omar al-Bashir, Sudan’s president who sets the pace for this human debasement and who the International Criminal Court has indicted for war crimes against the indigenous people of Sudan; in fact, it would cost us something. But I find myself wondering what cost we pay by not demanding the pursuit of justice beyond our political or personal gain.

To date, the embassies of Britain, the U.S., Canada and the Netherlands have called on Sudan to respect Ibrahim’s right to change her faith. Isn’t this woman’s life, and the principle for which she is willing to lay it down, worth more than a “call”?

Kimberly L. Smith is the president and co-founder of Make Way Partners, the only indigenously operated relief organization providing orphan care and anti-trafficking efforts in the Sudan and South Sudan. Smith has been serving alongside the Sudanese people for 10 years. Make Way Partners currently provides complete care to 1,100 orphans and employs 300 Sudanese, many of whom are former victims of sex trafficking. Smith is also the author of the award-winning book Passport through Darkness, which chronicles much of her experience in the Sudans. For more information on Kimberly L. Smith and Make Way Partners, please visit www.makewaypartners.org.

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