The 5th Infantry Division embarked from Northern Ireland and debarked across Utah Beach beginning 9 July.
It assumed control of the 1st Infantry Division’s sector in the vicinity of Caumont-l’Êventé, securing ground between major Commonwealth efforts to seize Caen and major American efforts to seize Saint-Lô.
The division’s defense was an active one; regiments sent out frequent patrols to probe enemy lines, keep the enemy off balance, secure tactical intelligence, and identify worthy targets for air and artillery strikes.
Stung by this rough treatment, the Germans responded with patrols and counterattacks of their own.
Artillery and snipers were dominant sources of casualties for both sides in this sector during this period.
The 5th Infantry Division improved upon its techniques for eradicating snipers, and many of its combat patrols were dispatched for this purpose.
This attrition and diversion of German forces facilitated preparations for an eventual breakthrough offensive.