78k: Cicely Tyson / Talking Heads
World at War
Richard Burton.....Bill Murray
[ open on black-and-white footage of World War II ]
Richard Burton V/O: June 5th, 1944. Paris. It is the day before 300,000 allied forces hit the beaches at Normandy to save a Nazi-occupied France. The leaders of both the allied and axis powers have readied themselves with a confrontation that could decide the fate of the entire free word. One man -- General Dwight D. Eisenhower -- made a last-ditch effort to avoid bloodshed and peacefully liberate France. To accomplish this, he called up... The Walker Brigade.
[ title card ]
[ dissolve to Richard Burton ]
Richard Burton: Good evening. I'm Richard Burton. Ike was hesitant to launch a D-Day attack that would jeopardize the lives of hundreds of thousands of men! So when it was suggested that the 45-men Walker Brigade confront the Nazi guns on June Five... Ike JUMPED at the notion!
V/O: Walker Platoon! Aten... hut!
[ cut to black-and-white footage of soldiers marching with walkers across enemy fields ]
Richard Burton V/O: Little is known about the Walker Brigade. This rare footage shows that they were a group of patriotic men who were EAGER to serve their country!
[ continued footage shows soldiers with walkers running an obstacle course ]
Richard Burton V/O: Don't let looks deceive! The Walker Brigade was not composed of disabled soldiers -- they were a group of able-bodied men who knew that the Geneva Convention stated that: [ SUPER: "... the enemy cannot shoot at, capture, take hostage of, torture or taunt any soldier who has a convalescent device." ] "... the enemy cannot shoot at any soldier who has a walker!"
[ continued footage shows soldiers with walkers parachuting from planes ]
Richard Burton V/O: And so it began. In the grey dawn, June Five, the greatest airlift in the history of ambulatory aid took place over France.
[ a soldier with a walker dangles from a tree after landing ]
Richard Burton V/O: The strategy: From behind German lines at Orleans, approach Jerry's SOUTHERN front, drive him north and FORCE him to surrender his BACK to the English Channel! Slowly, the Walker Brigade advanced along the perimeter of battle!
[ continued footage shows soldiers crawling along the ground beneath their walkers ]
Richard Burton V/O: The Walkers drove deep in Drax's territory. They had nearly approached Orleans, where the entire German waylock was coiled and ready to STRIKE! If their mission failed, the ultimate conflict would be at hand! A CLASH between two opposing forces, would combine power to destroy civilization! THIS was the confrontation that these heroic men, 45 strong, wanted to prevent. At exactly 11:31 a.m., the undaunted Walker Brigade broke through a crack in the Siegfried Line! And, at exactly 11:32, Jerry, with no regard for the Geneva Convention, DECIMATED the Walker Brigade!
[ German soldiers open fire on the Walker Brigade, as soldiers and walkers topple over ]
[ return to Richard Burton ]
Richard Burton: D-Day went on as scheduled! The Walker Brigade was IDIOTIC! A STUPID ida, from a military standpoint, but a GOOD one if you host a show like this and are running out of rare film footage that still makes World War II look interesting! Im' Richard Burton. Please join me next time, when "World at War" brings you RARE footage about... the Dialysis Division! Until then... good night!
[ THE END ]
[ fade ]