Meet Rupert. His mission? Deceit. On D-Day in June 1944, the Allies dropped hundreds of burlap and sand dummies with cotton parachutes across France, far from where the real paratroopers were landing in Normandy. Though just a third the size of a person, the fakes—nicknamed “Rupert”—would have looked larger in the air. They were designed to explode on landing, destroying evidence of the trick.