|May 20th, 1941|
Invasion of Crete
May 20, 1941. German Fallschirmjäger are preparing the first airborne invasion to the Island of Crete under the code-name Unternehmen Merkur ("Operation Mercury").
The Battle of Crete was unprecedented in three respects: it was the first-ever mainly airborne invasion, it was the first time the Allies made significant use of intelligence from the deciphered German Enigma code and it was the first time invading German troops encountered mass resistance from a civilian population. In light of the heavy casualties suffered by the parachutists, Adolf Hitler forbade further large scale airborne operations. However, the Allies were impressed by the potential of paratroopers, and started to build their own airborne divisions.