Saturday, February 29, 2020

World in Flames 29

January/February 1942 was short and sweet.

 Nothing happened in China.
The Urals was also event free.

In Europe, please excuse the winter sun,
there was an aborted attack by the Axis in the Caucasus.
They used both a 5 factor and 4 factor ground strike to flip two units and rolled 10, 10, 9 and 10.

There has been a breakout from Stalingrad.  Will the Yugoslav HQ be able to coordinate the Romanians to stop it?

Elsewhere the Japanese won the first naval battle with the US, the later aborting after losing a cruiser.  Wake Island was captured.

North Africa saw a successful Italian attack (they threw a double one on their ground strike with their one factor aircraft - go figure) and they are now approaching the Nile.  An Allied attack in Algeria failed with heavy losses.  The Axis also captured Archangel (held by the Commonwealth).

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Stalingrad'42 - Turns 20 to halfway through Turn 23

Richard and I continued this exciting game.

 This area seems to offer the Soviets the best opportunity for counterattacks.
It is near the map edge so reinforcements can be used immediately.
The terrain is favourable and the Axis are stretched.

 The situation in the north at the end of Turn 20.

 In the south the offensive against the northern bridgehead has been called off.

 Another attack by the Soviets hoping to isolate the Germans in Balashov.

 The north end Turn 21. 
It could of rained, but it was overcast.
The fighting for Voronezh continues.
The Axis desperately need a few more VPs to avoid defeat.

 In the south the Soviets are having to pull back from the Don.

 A desperate attack.

 The Axis have captured Voronezh and an extra VP location in the north.
The game will go on.

 End of Turn 22 in the south.

We had to stop halfway through Turn 23.
In the above image the Axis have finished their turn and it is up to the Soviet's go.
The Axis have been able to reinforce their line.
Is there a weak spot for the Soviets to attack?

In the south an attack by the Axis has opened up a hole,
but they took heavy losses and perhaps might be a tad exposed?

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Operation Splendour 22 July 1942 Again

This time I went the Commonwealth and Mark Woods, in only his second Rommel game, went Axis.

A bit of background to the battle first:

In July 1942 there were six battles fought around the Alamein line, followed ultimately by the November 1942 Battle of El Alamein under Montgomery after which the Eighth Army never lost another battle.

Auchinleck's third offensive had failed - and failed disgracefully. "There is nothing in the whole record of the Afrika Korps" states Ronald Lewin bluntly, "to compare with the abandonment of the New Zealanders naked before an armoured attack in the opening stages of the first Ruweisat battle."

This remark refers to other New Zealand brigades, and not the 6th Brigade, which would be called into action for the Second Battle of Ruweisat Ridge.

There would be even greater waste in Auchinleck's fourth offensive, the Second Battle of the Ruweisat Ridge, which began in the evening of 21 July. Its objective was declared to be "cutting Rommel's battle front in two parts."

The main assault was again to be carried out by XIII Corps. 6th New Zealand Brigade would attack from the south against the El Mreir Depression lying to the south-west of the Ruweisat Ridge, while 161st Indian Motor Brigade from the 5th Indian Division attacked from the east. The infantry would be assisted by 1st Armoured Division. The armoured brigades were not, however, intended to advance before first light on 22 July. Much criticism has been levelled against their commanders for being unwilling to move at night when the Germans had no compunction about doing so, but there was the important difference that the British tanks would have to make their way through enemy minefields.

In addition to their other tasks, 6th New Zealand and 161st Indian Motor Brigades were to clear a gap in those minefields.

Such was the plan, but not the realization. During the night of 21-22 July, 161st Brigade seized Deir el Shein, only to be driven out by counter-attack; it failed to capture Point 62. 6th New Zealand Brigade, after ferocious fighting which cost it 200 casualties, secured the eastern part of El Mreir, but the tanks did not move up to support it in time. In consequence at 0515 on 22 July, Nehring fell on the New Zealanders with both 15th and 21st Panzer and shattered them. Some 700 men were killed, wounded or captured, and twenty-three guns were lost.


After Action Report

This time the Indians and New Zealanders made a dash using road movement and the associated event to untip to secure all four objectives.

The Axis immediately started to attack.
Point 62?

 The New Zealanders were most exposed as they had no armour support.

The previous and following objectives represent the El Mreir Depression I expect.

 Help Britain do the job - exactly!

 On the isolated flank the Indians came under pressure.

 But at the other locations the troops had been able to dig in.

 The tank might be vulnerable, but it provides outflanking.
This objective I believe to be Deir el Shein.

 The isolated Indians are dwindling.

 The attacks are relentless.

 The New Zealanders are holding on.

 But you can hear them crying out for armour support.

 The Valentines arrive.

 21st Panzer pulls back its armour to a line, 
but its panzergrenadiers continue to attack.

 The newly arrived armoured brigade still has a good way to go before it can be of use.
The New Zealanders on the right are just about gone/

 But in goes a counterattack to retake the central objective.

 DAK reinforcements have arrived 
and a major attack is being made against the remaining New Zealand position.

 15th Panzer attacks the British armour.

 21st Panzer has secured one objective and is now on the attack.

 The British armour is not holding up very well.

 But it is still getting stuck into the 15th Panzer.

 But is really no match for them.

 Back in the centre the British armour is still in control of the objective,
but for how long?

 The New Zealanders have lost their objective.
The game now stands at a draw.

 21st Panzer try to capture the remaining objective,
which is still gallantly held by the 161st Indian Motor Brigade.

However the central objective was lost and so Auchinleck's offensive is again stopped.

Monday, February 24, 2020

More Carthaginians

The rebasing continues.


 Light cavalry and light foot.

Heavy foot

Friday, February 21, 2020

Stalingrad'42 - Turns 17 to 19

The weather is becoming intermittently overcast.  No biggy, just the Luftwaffe can't fly so many missions.

 The Soviets target a lone Italian mechanized unit.

 Down south it is a Rumanian that gets some attention.

 In the north there is still a sizeable Soviet presence.

 In the centre the Stalingrad defences are holding firm.

 Down south Rostov has finally fallen,
but the pocket further along the Don has been contained.

 The Soviet concentration in the north strikes a lone Hungarian unit.

 Keeping up the theme another Axis ally is attacked near Stalingrad.

 And so it goes down south.
Italian this time.

 The big picture.
Apart from Rostov, where the Axis have been able to get across the Don,
the other fronts are holding firm.

 In the north the Soviets now attack a German unit
(well there is a Hungarian stacked with it).

 And in the south as well.

The northern front is proving to be very fluid.
The Soviets are a bit short of armour,
but the Axis are a bit short of troops. 

 In the south the Axis have made progress in breaking out of Rostov,
but further up the Don they have been seriously pushed back.
At Stalingrad the Axis have approached the city's outskirts.

VP count so far for the Axis.

Turn 19 has just completed. 
The VP tally is almost historical.
The Axis will need to capture more and quickly as the weather is a changing.

 Still plenty of Soviet reinforcements to arrive.

The Axis continue to receive reinforcements, 
but some may arrive too late.