France has come under fire from veterans of the Second World War for breaking its promise to them. Originally, France was supposed to be flying the few remaining American veterans to Normandy to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the D-Day Landings that saw soldiers liberate France from German occupation. But France has now backtracked and claimed it made no such promises.
Spokesman for the New York Post, Nick Iacono, said ‘Our Chief-of-Staff heard it from the French Embassy in D.C, that they would be flown out to France.’ But a spokesman for the French Embassy later claimed that the nation had never made such a promise. Theresa Tarangelo, whose father Felice John Tulli landed on Normandy on D-Day Plus One, said ‘France was supposed to pay for our airfare, hotel and transportation. Now they’re telling us they have nothing to do with it… it’s really frustrating.’ Tulli is now 90 years old.
U.S Army Master Sergeant Manuel Perez, whose job is to coordinate between D-Day families and the French government, said it was ‘common knowledge that the French government would pay travel expenses for veterans and their spouses to fly to France for the D-Day commemorations this year.’ What makes the situation even more frustrating is that France paid for veterans to go to the Normandy anniversary celebrations ten years ago in their 60th year, so questions are being raised as to why they refuse to do it this year. Instead, Tulli and his family are having to pool their finances so that he can visit Normandy and honour the men that he served with one final time.
To watch a short video of the D-Day celebrations in Normandy on the 60th anniversary, have a look at our Youtube channel.