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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL)

 
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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 11/8/2011 3:48:18 PM   
Dixie


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What to defend it with though? By the time there are enough spare LCUs the danger is pretty much gone. My view on the subject:

The Royal Navy isn't going to achieve much before 1944-45, and the Indian Ocean is not that much use to me. I don't need to ship anything out of Calcutta or Chittagong and transferring units is quicker by rail than by sea. It's all well and good locking me out of the IO, but if I'm not using it then it's no great loss. Because the RN isn't going to be fighting in the Indian Ocean I won't be needing the repair yards at Colombo and if GBL does take them he can't use them unless he also controls a large chunk of southern India, enough to keep the B-17/B-24s out of bombing range.

If GBL wants to deprive me of the use of the facilities would he not achieve the same result by capturing Southern India, thus also gaining industries etc whilst pushing the heavy bombers further away from important targets? With Betty/Nell based in Southern India sending ships to or basing them in
Ceylon would be costly and dangerous for the Allies. If GBL takes Ceylon, then without Southern India it's of no actual use to him, no Japanese player will voluntarily immobilise any of their ships within 4EB range of an Allied airfield for any length of time. Plus, holding it as Japan requires supplies to be shipped in across a long sea route with plenty of space for submarine interdiction.

I do expect an invasion somewhere in that corner of the map, Diego Garcia is a prime candidate as is Addu. Ceylon is a useful base, if I have something to base there. Seeing as my CVs and most of the better RN ships are withdrawn for much of the war I'd be holding it just for the sake of saying it's mine. In that situation I'd prefer to retain my LCUs for some serious fighting in India rather than losing them or having them cooped up in a self-administrating PoW camp.

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Post #: 151
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 11/8/2011 4:02:19 PM   
mc3744


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I respectfully disagree

If you hold Ceylon you also interdict any real possibility of attacking Western India and even Madras is within range. And attacking central Eastern India without control of Ceylon is much more dangerous if you are Japan.
Why would you say that the RN is out of play till 44/45? Depending on his moves you could be fighting back in Burma in '43 already. And naval coastal protection with LBA is pretty useful.
Also the amount of BBs withdrawn is negligible over the total BBs you get (there's a thread where I counted all withdrawals, it's more psychological - and boring - than anything you actually feel), especially later on. You can always send a few slow US BBs to the IO to act as a defensive force for costal airfields. They don't need to be British. Although I understand your preference for the RN .

A SCTF in a costal base is like a CV TF but with stronger combat capabilities. Why would you want to forsake that chance to defend your coastal bases from the air and from the sea.
Before any amphibious TF can land the SCTF has to be dispatched and if it's made up of BBs covered by LBA fighters it's not an easy task. Yes, you can be roughed up, but you fight on land and he is in the middle of the ocean, you can dock he cannot, you can reload, he cannot.
Hence I find that a good naval power in the IO can be very effective in stopping and amphibious invasion, but it's going to need some repairs eventually

Bottom line, I'd try to hold on to Ceylon, it makes the West Indian Coast very hard to attack.

Just my tow cents

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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 11/8/2011 5:40:55 PM   
Dixie


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I can see the point you're making and I agree with it. But, there's a lot of real estate to be held with not a great deal of LCUs in the early days.


In order to put up a realistic defence of Ceylon, the requirements would be at least a division on top of the troops already there and ideally two (which I don't have). The lack of AT capability means they have to go in by sea, which means unrestricted units. This narrows down the field to one British (18th), one Indian (11th) and two Australian (6th and 7th) divisions. The Brits are already assigned to a position which leaves either the Australians or Indians to garrison Ceylon.

I need something on the west coast of India to guard against a surprise attack, GBL is aware of the vulnerable state of the Commonwealth in the first few months. This ties up an Australian division in India. I could send the 7th to Ceylon instead of the Burmese border or move the 11th from Madras to Ceylon. Or both. Can the inexperienced 19th Indian Div face up to a Japanese attack on Madras?

So, we're left with:
1 Australian Division (6th or 7th) (divided)
1 Australian Brigade (22nd) (badly depleted)
1 Indian Division (11th) (rebuilding)

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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 11/8/2011 5:49:21 PM   
witpqs

 

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If a Japanese player really wants Ceylon, it's his. Only later can you make it too costly.

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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 11/8/2011 5:52:00 PM   
mc3744


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The 11th rebuilding sounds good
I mean with the 11th you probably go up to 500 to 700 assault points.
Which - very approximately - means that he needs at least 3 full divisions to kick you out. And until he does you hold the airfield and port and are much closer to a supply point.
It would be a pretty long battle and while it lats you get stronger and he does not.
I don't see Japan wiping away a fortified position with one division and a few brigades in a few days, it's going to take a while and it could be worth your while.
And if he does not attack you keep a valuable position to keep him away from India or make his come very difficult.

Unless you know he comes with all he's got to Ceylon, one division could actually make the difference ... IMHO that is

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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 11/8/2011 5:53:38 PM   
mc3744


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quote:

ORIGINAL: witpqs

If a Japanese player really wants Ceylon, it's his. Only later can you make it too costly.


Yes, if he REALLY WANTS it. But that means he is not taking something else.
But I agree, you cannot hold it IF Japan is committed.

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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 11/26/2011 12:07:49 PM   
Dixie


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17th Jan 1942

It's been a while, the result of a busy few weeks but we're back!


EAST INDIES
The past four days have not been kind to the Allies, the Japanese have continued to roll over any Allied defence in most areas. The few bright spots have been quickly extinguished by overwhelming Japanese air power. Dutch bombers have managed to land several bombs on Japanese ships around Kendari, but the arrival of Zeroes has resulted in high casualties

Today's action continued in that vein, Dutch bombers took heavy casualties whilst attacking Japanese ships near Kendari and in attacking the 38th Division in southern Sumatra. In total 16 Martin-139 bombers were lost, almost all of them to Japanese fighters. USAAF B-17s fared slightly better in their attack on Palembang, although the raid got split up none of the big bombers were lost. However one part of the force decided to run away, an action that is firmly in line with Allied doctrine
USS Sculpin was damaged near Palembang, she was attacked by several destroyers which were escorting a Japanese cruiser. (Possibly a reaction to Dutch MTB flotilla attacks). In the Makassar Strait the USS Perch managed to hit BB Ise with a torpedo, but the result was a disappointing dud The battleships was spotted in the company of what would appear to be an invasion force, it looks like Balikpapen is about to fall....

MALAYA
Heavy Japanese air raids on Singapore, 6 Japanese bombers were shot down by AA fire and minimal damage was caused to the facilities. With IJA forces massing less than 40 miles to the north it looks like time is running out for the British base. Especially as the defences have been reduced by over a division's worth of troops.

BURMA AND INDIA
The small force of USAAF B-17D bombers has so far been the most effective weapon in the Allied armoury on the sub-continent. Four bombers were sent aloft today to bomb Japanese positions at Pegu, unfortunately one of the aircraft was lost.
Japanese troops have reached Rangoon, with further troops spotted to the north of the city in an attempt to cut off the British retreat. However, I'd seen this coming and a few of the better units have already quit the city (enough to form the core of another division if needed) with more troops slowly leaking away across the river to Bassein.

PACIFIC
Seems to be all quiet around here since the Japanese landings on Luganville and Savaii. New Zealand and US forces are relocating from Fiji to Noumea and the USMC is ashore in French held Tahiti. The lack of engineer units is a bit of a problem and is made worse by the lack of shipping available right now. The undeveloped nature of the bases also means that unloading is either slow (strategic lift) or hazardous (amphibious landings). A lack of naval registered transports further complicates the issue, but if it's problematic for me I can take heart from the fact that it's going to be worse for GBL and his almost total lack of navy transports. I'm expecting further Japanese advances in the SOPAC area, namely invasions of Fiji and New Caledonia.


And finally, somewhere on the map something Japanese has hit a mine! I got the mine strike sounds follwed by the sounds of something sinking (a submarine I think)...

< Message edited by Dixie -- 11/26/2011 12:08:43 PM >

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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 11/30/2011 11:13:16 AM   
mc3744


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About time!

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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 12/5/2011 11:26:53 AM   
Dixie


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20th Jan 1942

Some interesting developments have come up over the past few days, including an all too rare victory for the Allies...

SOUTH PACIFIC
The build up of forces on Noumea has taken a hit after troop convoys were ordered to scatter after reports of Japanese aircraft spotting a NZ convoy. The build up must continue however, so convoys are holding at a safe distance and will unload one at a time. There is a suspicion that the aircraft was based at Luganville rather than carrier-borne, as PBY patrols have failed to spot any evidence of IJN activity.

Tahiti has completed it's first level of fortifications, although more engineers are needed in order to facilitate a worthwhile rate of construction. There is also 170 AV based here now, mostly USMC forces, but little AV support as yet. Even at best estimates it will take a fortnight for additional troops to reach the area, but the Allied presence should be enough to hold off any Japanese aggression for now.


NEW GUINEA AND THE SOLOMONS (inc. Eastern Australia)
Plenty of sighting reports from Allied coastwatchers, but very little I can do about them given the scarcity of forces in the region. Japanese troops have landed at Buna, small scale RAAF attacks have achieved very little but have at least managed to avoid being shot down by IJN Zeroes.

Not much is happening in Australia, a slow build up of forts and airfields is taking place whilst there is even a small reserve of fuel should the USN carrier group require it. Other than that, hurry up and wait whilst the USAAF and RAAF engage in training missions in order to bring some level of usefulness.


EAST INDIES
Japanese assaults have claimed Balikpapen, Boela and Babo. Battleships have been spotted at Balikpapen although they have escaped the attention of the Dutch/US submarine patrols.
At Kendari, the RAAF have attempted to land bombs on CVE Taiyo in a series of night-time raids. So far the attempts have failed (not a surprise) but surely the possibility of a lucky hit should force GBL to move her soon? Or maybe the subs will get lucky...

The Dutch air units on Java have exhausted themselves in an attempt to halt the IJA 38th Division, ultimately a futile gesture by the Dutch. The 38th managed to easily overwhelm the Dutch defenders at Oosthaven and Benkoelen and all of Southern Sumatra is now in Japanese hands.


PHILIPPINES

Lots of bombs are dropped on the final US enclave at Bataan. Hopefully the combination of jungle and forts will provide some sort of barrier to the Japanese. But I'm not holding my breath.


INDIA AND BURMA
More build up here as well. The Japanese forces in Rangoon have not yet attacked, perhaps GBL is unaware of the paucity of defending troops, or he is attempting to fully encircle the city? If only he'd brought some shufti-kites he'd know how easily he could take the city....

In India things are looking, if not rosy then slightly pink tinted. With the first elements of two experienced Australian divisions landing on the sub-continent the Allied defence has been nicely boosted. The arrival of several RAF squadrons from the Middle East has also provided a good backbone for the future defence of India. A handful of squadrons remain below 50 exp although the vast majority sitting in the mid 50s. A precious handful have 60+ exp, although three of the six squadrons are recce, patrol and transport squadrons.
More reinforcements are en route in the form of USAAF fighter squadrons, the problem being that most of the squadrons are operating the P-40E which I suspect will suffer in the altitude stakes. Until a supply of P-38s is obtained the IJAAF will hold the advantages here, but hopefully the superior durability of the American types will compensate for this disadvantage.

There are 15 Allied (Brit/Canadian/US) fighter squadrons en route to India via Aden and Capetown, so plenty to provide CAP over the front-line and second-line bases to prevent Japanese para drops. Alles gut? I hope so.


CHINA
Whilst GBL's troops continue to grind their way closer to Sian in Northern China thing are (I hope) approaching stalemate in the South. A rapid (for the Chinese) build up of forts is taking priority over everything else, although it probably won't be enough should GBL come knocking.

In a nice little morale boost though, the AVG was heavily engaged over Chuhsien. Several Japanese air raids were sent against the Chinese positions around the city, despite being heavily outnumbered the Americans exceeded expectation in style. Including ops losses for the types involved in combat the Japanese lost 28 aircraft over Chuhsein alone, 20 as a direct result of the AVG shooting them down. Included in this total are 10 Zero fighters (7 air to air) which are believed to have been launched from Kaga and Soryu They definitely came from a CVTF off of Shanghai and radio intercepts (the combat replay) include mentions of both carriers.
The cost to the Americans was 1 Hawk written off which is a fantastic result that I am pleased with, especially given the intervention of KB based Zeroes. Now it's time for the AVG to retreat somewhere safer again, I can't see GBL letting me continue this pattern of destruction for long...





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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 12/9/2011 4:42:56 PM   
Dixie


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21st/22nd Jan 1942

BURMA/INDIA
The city of Rangoon fell to the Japanese on the 22nd, most of the British and Indian troops were already clear of the city before the Japanese assault smashed through the defensive positions held by Burmese troops. Until Singapore falls the Japanese will most likely be unable to take advantage of the port facilities however.


CHINA
The 21st was a quiet day in general, with just a few skirmishes in the northern regions of the country.

Japanese aircraft did manage to locate an AVG airfield near Wuchow and destroy a fighter on the ground. In anticipation of a larger offensive on the 22nd two squadrons of the AVG were ordered to patrol over the airfield. The plan was a success, a small sweep of Navy Type 0s preceded a large raid by IJAAF types. In a series of combats the Americans fought off the Navy fliers and devastated the Army raids, in total 28 Japanese aircraft were confirmed destroyed at a cost of one AVG fighter.

GBL's Sonia unit will have plenty of empty places at the mess tonight, with 23 Sonias shot down morale will also have taken a kicking The destruction of four Oscars is a nice bonus too, proving that with good pilots Allied fighters can more than hold their own, this gives hope for the Indian front in particular where Hurricanes and P-40s will need to bear the brunt of the work.

The final AVG squadron is moving from Calcutta across to China now, all three squadrons will rotate between defending Chunking and operating from front line bases. So far the Americans have lost 15 Hawks in return for almost 100 Japanese kills In fact the two AVG squadrons have now accounted for almost 45% of all the Allied air victories scored, so I have high hopes that the addition of the final squadron will boost the Allied scores further.

With Chinese forces unable to stand against Japanese offensives, it would appear that the Chinese front will merely be somewhere to eat as much of GBL's aircraft output as possible whilst staving off a total collapse of the Chinese war machine.


EAST INDIES
With Balikpapen in Japanese hands, another target has opened up for Java based B-17s. So far however efforts have achieved little and morale ranges from high to terrible in the three squadrons left in Java. The B-17s will remain for at least a few more days just in case they are able to damage something.

Allied subs are dropping in effectiveness again, which is a shame as a Jap carrier group is currently east of Java and relying on the airmen to damage it would appear to be folly. Ho-hum, I'll have to kill them next year instead...
There was a minor victory as the Dutch MTB squadron managed to sink a Japanese patrol boat near Singapore, although two MTBs were sunk in the battle.

SOUTH PACIFIC
Once again the ships unloading at Noumea are scattering after being spotted by Japanese aircraft. Reports are that a convoy was shadowed by a Jake floatplane. Given that Luganville is 10 hexes from Noumea it's possible that the aircraft was operating at maximum range, but discretion is the better part of valour for now. So just in case it's come from a ship I'm running away.
The past two days have seen 173AV disembarked; the majority of two NZ battalions, part of an Australian brigade and a US artillery battalion are ashore with the French defenders. That should be enough to hold out against the naval units GBL has been using for invasions in the area.

Things are taking bloody ages to unload at Tahiti, work is progressing on enlarging the harbour but until I can get a port servicing unit down there it's going to continue to take a loooooooong time to unload anything more than a 4 cwt truck...



I wish I had more B-17s. And Hurricanes and P-40s. Also some P-38s and Spitfires would be nice. And if it's not too much trouble some F6Fs and F4Us. Plus some experienced infantry units, fast battleships, big carriers and more patrol aircraft.

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Post #: 160
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 12/11/2011 8:52:45 PM   
Dixie


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23rd & 24th January 1942

EAST INDIES
GBL's Japs have landed at, and easily captured Makassar. This gives him a handy base just a short hop from Southern Java. He's obviously got plans to use the base as a platform for attacks on the Soerbaja area, there were two JAAF Coys in with the assault troops (5 Amphibious Bde).

B-17 attacks from Java have failed to inflict any damage on Japanese port facilities in southern Borneo I think it's time to pull the big kites back to Oz before the Japs come and smash them on the deck. The lack of damage from the heavies has been a disappointment so far in the campaign, a lack of experience has been the stumbling point here.

Elsewhere, the Allied troops on Borneo are proving to be more use now than they were in the original defence of their bases. GBL has tasked several of his smaller LCUs to hunt down the remnants of the British and Dutch forces, a task which is taking them deep into the centre of Borneo and keeping them from more useful pursuits.


AUSTRALIA
Apart from the slow build up of Allied forces there's not a lot to report around here. The US Navy is building the core of a submarine flotilla in the ports at Sydney and Brisbane. Including damaged subs under repair (and a pair in Perth) there are 15 subs based in Australia, just a shame that their torpedoes are pants.

USAAF bombers are meant to be hitting Japanese facilities and troops at Buna on New Guinea, but it's probably a bit too dangerous for the poor dears who are barely making the effort to roll out of bed in the morning. Or perhaps they don't think it's fair unless they're being shot at...


SOUTH PACIFIC
Once again, it would appear that reports of Japanese aircraft above Noumea were exaggerated. Still, better safe than sorry. Another troop convoy should be unloading in a couple of days, this one is bringing a small Australian armoured unit. Allied command (i.e. me) is banking on the Matilda II being almost indestructible when faced with IJA AT weapons.
The convoys that scattered will reload their troops in New Zealand, there should be sufficient shipping available to get the remaining soldiers unloaded in a single day even with the civilian nature of the transports available. This is a good thing, especially as latest reports have indicated that GBL has three subs patrolling near Noumea.
The engineers on the island have also managed to throw together some forts, just a lot more to go along with an airfield and some more LCUs and it'll all be rosy.


Philippines
Japanese forces have attacked the US position at Bataan. A combination of jungle and forts kept the Japs at bay for now. But with almost the entire 14th Army along with 4th Div things can't be good for the Americans. At least this first assault has cost the Japanese a good number of casualties :

quote:

Ground combat at Bataan (78,77)

Japanese Deliberate attack

Attacking force 54431 troops, 538 guns, 480 vehicles, Assault Value = 1892

Defending force 35726 troops, 660 guns, 670 vehicles, Assault Value = 1265

Japanese engineers reduce fortifications to 3

Japanese adjusted assault: 1148

Allied adjusted defense: 2667

Japanese assault odds: 1 to 2 (fort level 3)

Combat modifiers
Defender: terrain(+), forts(+), leaders(+), experience(-)
Attacker:

Japanese ground losses:
5723 casualties reported
Squads: 56 destroyed, 252 disabled
Non Combat: 36 destroyed, 365 disabled
Engineers: 4 destroyed, 58 disabled
Vehicles lost 148 (7 destroyed, 141 disabled)


Allied ground losses:
2412 casualties reported
Squads: 6 destroyed, 142 disabled
Non Combat: 25 destroyed, 134 disabled
Engineers: 0 destroyed, 31 disabled
Vehicles lost 57 (6 destroyed, 51 disabled)



SINGAPORE
Even without fighter cover the fortress is taking a decent toll of the Japanese bombers. Heavy flak is causing GBL to send his Sallies in at an altitude where they are not causing too much damage. Plenty of aircraft are being damaged but not enough for my liking...


INDIA & BURMA
On the face of it, not much is happening on the sub-continent. British troops are still attempting to extract themselves from the Burmese jungle ahead of the pursuing Japanese. In the absolute worst case scenario, two British battalions and an RAF Group HQ are far enough ahead to escape overland pursuit. The possibility of Japanese landings along the coast can't be ruled out, but are unlikely until after Singapore has fallen.

In India, plans have once again changed...
Acting on recent sigint reports 19th Indian Div has been ordered to move to Diamond Harbour, analysts have decrypted intel that shows Japanese forces are planning for an attack on Calcutta. It's just an engineer regt so far, but it's an indication that plans are afoot.


I'm expecting some sort of amphibious landing to the east of Calcutta on the coast between (and including) Akyab and Chittagong. A landing in the Diamond Harbour/Calcutta area leaves GBL too vulnerable to Allied LBA, limited though it is.
I'm not sure, but I'd suspect that this would rule out a simultaneous landing on the Bengali coast. I'm not confident enough to strip the defences from those area though, instead the next wave of reinforcements will shore up the Calcutta 'corner' instead of the Imphal region. Even with the slow trickle of reinforcements I should win the race to get something here and the imminent arrival of Indian engineer units means that some formidable forts should great the baddies if they do come to call....

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 161
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 12/11/2011 9:15:21 PM   
Dixie


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The latest threat summaries from Allied HQ:

Singapore: Attack imminent
Java: Attack imminent

Port Moresby: Attack Probable
New Caledonia: Attack Probable
Fiji: Attack Possible
Pago Pago: Attack Probable
Tahiti: Attack unlikely
Line Islands: Minimal threat
Hawaii: Negligible threat

Western Australia: Invasion possible
Northern Australia: Invasion likely
North-East Australia: Invasion possible
South-East Australia: Invasion unlikely

Calcutta: Invasion Probable
Bengal Region: Invasion possible
Madras: Invasion unlikely
Ceylon: Invasion probable
Arakan Region: Invasion likely



****

There are a few threats out there, some more likely than others. There is a real risk of invasions at Fiji, the Arakan coast and Ceylon. New Caledonia is a possibility, but GBL is probably aware that a lot of shipping has been in and out of Noumea. The Line Islands are unlikely, as is Tahiti due to their distance from Japanese supply bases.

An invasion of India by sea will bring the KB along for the ride, GBL cannot risk the Royal Navy pitching up and slapping his transports around. I'd expect an attack on the Arakan region, it's close enough to make a drive into India possible without a long trek through the jungle but far enough from the major British airfields to make air attack on the transports less of a threat. I'd expect the KB to sortie closer to Ceylon in order to either catch the RN at anchor or prevent them getting close enough for the possibility of an attack on an invasion. This could be in concert with an invasion of the southern shore of Ceylon or semi-independent and aimed at keeping Jack Tar away.



So far the Southern Army and Imp. Guards Div along with several smaller IJA units are unaccounted for. Probably enough troops for 2.5-3 divisions, not enough to take Calcutta and the bases nearby on their own. Of course, it could be a bluff, so far only the 5th Engineers Rgt has been confirmed as planning for the attack...

The defence around the Calcutta region rests on seven Indian Bdes and a pair of Indian Divisions (not in position yet) who will be joined by an Australian division in three-four weeks plus a miscellaneous collection of armoured units, artillery and battalion sized forces. There is also the possibility of shifting troops from Hyderabad (200 AV) if an attack develops.

It's been a rambling couple of posts, but in a couple of months I'll be able to look back and either claim I was a strategic mastermind who can predict GBL's moves, or I'll look like a total tit for screwing it up quite badly! Place your bets now...

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 162
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 12/12/2011 11:58:35 AM   
mc3744


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With regard to Northern Australia, I find Babar (small island north of Darwin) an excellent defensive position. It's 8 hexes from Darwin which means that can be reached at night by the Repulse or PoW and any CA/CL based in Darwin and it is within range of DBs from Darwin too.
Once the airfield is developed it can make Japanese life very difficult around Timor and Ambon. And they have to shut down both Babar AND Darwin, which might not be that easy.
If you manage to move there some Dutch BF it can be developed quickly enough and it is a Dutch base, hence you can relocated Dutch squadrons there. Dutch Hurricane's and P-40 within naval cover from Darwin can put up quite a fight.
As usual if Japan wants Darwin and surrounding area badly you cannot stop them yet. But it can certainly slow them down.

Cheers

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RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 1/19/2012 1:05:52 PM   
Dixie


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31st Jan 1942

Real life was a bit of a bugger over the last month, busy at work and at home meant that the game hasn't progressed much and there was no time to update the AAR. So this is what has happened so far:


SOUTH PACIFIC
The Allied position on Noumea has been reinforced, but the intervention of (at least) a pair of CVLs disrupted preparations. Carrier strikes managed to sink two Australian corvettes and the AMC Westralia. Luckily the task force had already unloaded all the troops of the 4th Armoured Rgt. The policy of only having one convoy at Noumea also limited the losses suffered. The downside is that several units are either partly deployed at Noumea or awaiting the move whilst they twiddle their thumbs in New Zealand. Two Australian Bdes and a NZ Bn are sat at Auckland.

A swarm of Japanese subs has been spotted in the waters around Fiji although they are short of targets. Does this mean that (a) GBL is expecting Allied reinforcements or (b) GBL is planning his own operation in the region?

Tahiti has been transformed into a major US outpost, plenty of US Marines are based here with sufficient base force troops and engineers to support offensive ops in the near future. However, the current emphasis is on expanding the limited port facilities in order to remove the bottleneck that we are facing. The small dock is severely limiting the unloading rate of the American convoys.

Finally, the USN has been on the offensive around Luganville. Despite their crappy torpedoes US submarines have sighted and attacked several IJN subs whilst on patrol. Sadly, the aforementioned torpedoes have meant no successes


AUSTRALIA
Aside from a brief scare where it was feared that the Japanese carriers would strike at Sydney or Brisbane things have been quiet in Australia. Expansion of the NE airfields has been the primary focus as USAAF bombers have undertaken long range strikes against Japanese positions on the Northern coast of New Guinea. Damage to both sides has been limited.


EAST INDIES
Japanese forces control large swathes of Dutch territory. They have also landed on Java, signalling the beginning of the end for Allied forces on the island. Despite the presence of strongholds at Batavia and Soerbaja I am not expecting much from the Dutch forces on the island. The cruiser Sumatra has struck a blow (of sorts) against the Japanese. She managed to reach the Japanese landing site at Kalidatji, sneak through the Japanese SCTF guarding the transports and blast off some rounds against the fleet. She escaped any damage herself but failed to cause any either. Still, this action seems to have reinforced GBL's opinion that I am some sort of genius

Most of Celebes is under the Japanese heel, leaving Koepang as the only major base outside Java still in Allied hands. Shame that there isn't really anything to base here though...


SINGAPORE
Still holding out. But only just. By now GBL will have realised that there is a large chunk of the pre-war garrison missing. I'd guess that he suspects they are in India, although he may believe that some troops are in Java after he faced Australian forces on Sumatra.


INDIA AND BURMA

Japanese forces have advanced as far as Toungoo, this leaves several Burmese and Indian units scrambling to reach safe territory. Should these troops manage to reach safety then they are penciled in to bolster the rear line defences North of Calcutta. If they all die then I'll have to cope somehow, although I'd quite like to save the various engineer units.

The Indian defences are looking better though. Recent reinforcements have meant that a division has been spared to protect Diamond Harbour which had previously been left vulnerable to a potential (although unlikely) Japanese invasion. There is still a lingering doubt about the abilities of several units however. Too many of the British and Indian units are understrength and/or inexperienced, with tanks in particular in short supply.

The aerial situation is a little better, plenty of decent (although not great) experience squadrons have arrived from the Middle East, with the better units permanent additions to the RAF in India. It's just a matter of waiting for those Spitfires that Winnie has promised me....


CHINA
Japanese expansion in China has slowed somewhat in the last couple of weeks. Most likely due to GBL redeploying his forces than as a result of Chinese military prowess. It would appear that GBL is trying to hunt down the AVG using fighter sweeps with Zeroes and Tojos. I'd like to avoid that, guerrilla warfare in the skies is a far better use of the Americans and I think I've spotted another location they can cause some carnage amongst the IJ bombers.


OTHER STUFF
GBL suspects that I have stopped running, hopefully this will slow down his advances as he brings larger forces to the action. Allied strategy is relying on Noumea acting as a speedbump at the very least, small convoys will attempt to slip more troops into the Allied position in an attempt to hold New Caledonia.

The arrival of RN carriers also appears to have GBL slightly on edge, especially as he claims to have no idea where any of the US carriers are hiding out. Despite the fact that I have no intention of risking any more carriers just yet, the potential is there for a carrier strike around the edges of the Japanese Empire. The fact that I have carried out a few unexpected attacks using the Allied navies will leave the possibility of such a carrier strike open and will (hopefully) mean that GBL will have to limit his operations in order to maintain carrier support for his forces.

I still have no idea what to do with the Chinese front, short term plans involve pulling back into more defensible positions but even this is not going to save the hordes should a full scale attack come crashing through my lines.
In India and Burma I'm feeling confident, the poor transport net around the border means either a long slog through the jungle or a seaborne invasion, both of which will take time to achieve which plays into my hands.
The South Pacific looks set to become the main focus of US effort, purely in order to maintain communications with Australia.
The DEI is doomed. C'est la vie, baby. Not much I can do except hope to cause some injuries to the Japs, the dwindling Allied submarine forces are the best bet for this, but combat damage is whittling down their numbers as more and more boats retire to Oz for repairs.




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(in reply to mc3744)
Post #: 164
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 1/20/2012 1:46:09 PM   
mc3744


Posts: 1957
Joined: 3/9/2004
From: Italy
Status: offline
Hi GBL, welcome back!

Can't you get a couple of A-24 Banshee squadrons to Noumea? They can prove a great disincentive to Japanese CVL.
They are certainly not very effective due to the initial low experience, but just 1 bomb on deck is enough to create a very unhappy situation for the IJN given their poor damage control.
And a few will always get throughout the CAP, as long as you provide a minimal escort (P-36 would work too).

Cheers

_____________________________

Nec recisa recedit

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 165
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 1/20/2012 3:45:23 PM   
Dixie


Posts: 10147
Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
Status: offline
1st Feb 1942

South Pacific
Japanese troops have landed at Efate, in itself this is not a major problem. Unless GBL has brought some engineers with him the base lacks an airfield. Even with engineers it'll be a while before it's capable of supporting offensive ops against Noumea.

In better news, a Japanese SCTF moved towards Noumea. This is good news as CL Katori is reported as hitting a mine and is heavily damaged as a result. With the nearest Japanese repair yards at Manila that puts the ship out of action for several months It would appear that GBL has not been learning his lessons too well, I-25 is also reported sunk earlier in the war as a result of the Noumea minefields. With any luck Katori will fall prey to one of the US submarines between Noumea and Rabaul, or maybe she'll just sink outright....

It's almost tempting to send Enterprise to interdict the Japanese landings, but the risk posed by the Japanese light carriers is causing me to shy away from this course of action.


New Guinea
Not much to report here. Long range B-17 and LB-30 raids have run into Japanese CAP above Buna, luckily the range from the Japanese base at either Lae or Rabaul means only a handful of Japanese fighters are on station when the bombers arrive. As per usual though, a lack of numbers means my efforts have a minimal result.


Australia
Not much happening here either, several things might be happening in the future though.

Enterprise is on standby to deploy to New Caledonia, either as part of a combat force or possibly to transfer some A-24 Banshee squadrons from their current base at Melbourne. The third option is to temporarily deploy some of her own DB squadrons to Noumea. I like this plan because (a) the squadrons have a much better experience level and (b) they will be easier to rescue should everything go pear shaped as they can land on a carrier.

Consideration is being given to sending some Australian troops to secure Lord Howe Island and Norfolk Island. Neither location is vital to the Allied war effort, but with a little work they can provide a transfer route for aircraft between Oz and NZ/New Caledonia or even support offensive operations against Japanese holdings in the SOPAC area. An invasion of Lord Howe island is unlikely but Norfolk Island is an outside chance.

In Western Australia, Perth is filling up with ships. 80 ships are currently in port whilst I try and decide what to do with them. A lot of the vessels have escaped from the DEI and are not really suited to warfare in the Pacific. Some, like the Dutch destroyers will be employed on the Australian coastal convoys but there doesn't seem to be much employment for the mass of Australian and Dutch coastal minesweepers.


EAST INDIES
Not too much to report here either. USN PBYs attempted a night-time attack on the Japanese landing beaches on Java, sadly they failed to cause any damage. The attack was launched after the Dutch submarine O-20 engaged a Japanese force, unfortunately the sub was heavily damaged in a series of ASW attacks and forced to surface where she was sunk by Japanese gunfire. It's the third Dutch submarine lost in two months of warfare so far. A shame since their torpedoes are far more reliable than their US counterparts.


BURMA AND INDIA
Japanese forces are continuing their advance up through Burma. Elements of the Burma Rifles were defeated NE of Prome by a Japanese force.


CHINA
Japanese troops clashed with Chinese forces at Pingsiang, the result was the always familiar Chinese retreat following massive casualties. At least my lot retreated in a forest, thus making their next defeat slightly less costly for me (I hope).

Further north, the CAF was in action. 11th FG/44th FS were ordered to patrol over friendly troops in their Hawk 75M aircraft. In a series of skirmishes the Chinese pilots managed to shoot down a pair of Japanese bombers. Tomorrow will see the AVG take over the patrol duties as I expect a Japanese response.

(in reply to mc3744)
Post #: 166
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 1/29/2012 12:03:49 PM   
Dixie


Posts: 10147
Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
Status: offline
2nd Feb 1942

South Pacific
Efate was captured by a Japanese force. Sigint indicates a naval gd unit, SNLF company and an AF unit. No dedicated engineers though, which is a bonus as building the airfield will take a while although GBL can base patrol aircraft there.

The first three APD ships are nearing completion of their conversion (in Australia), once they are ready they will be assigned to the SOPAC area in order to carry out rapid reinforcement of Noumea. Hopefully fast transport TFs will be able to steer clear of trouble even if their load is minimal.


East Indies
Two Japanese carrier forces have been spotted, one is in the Java Sea between Soerbaja and Borneo, this force launched attacks on the cruiser Sumatra as she was at Soerbaja. The second force has between Sumatra and Java into the Indian Ocean, as yet they could be headed almost anywhere although a long distance raid towards India is unlikely.

CL Sumatra is going to attempt a high speed dash towards Australia in order to escape destruction at the hands of the IJN air fleets. At best she has a 50/50 chance of making it, but if she stays then her sinking is assured. If she makes it then she'll be another vessel for the Australia escort forces.

The Dutch Air Force were in action, defending Soerbaja from the cream of the IJN pilots. Although they lost 6 aircraft in combat they managed to cause the loss of 6 Japanese aircraft (3 kills and 3 ops losses) including 4 Zeroes (and hopefully the pilots as well).


China
Blah, blah, blah. Terrible supply situation, terrible troops, not enough aircraft or AV support. You know the story


Other Stuff

HM Sub Trusty has spotted and engaged a large force of barges between Malaya and Northern Sumatra, sinking a Japanese landing barge. Is this an invasion of Sumatra?

Reinforcements are piling up in the US. Suitable shipping is a major bottleneck here, as is the lack of escort ships. So many troops and so few places to use them!

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 167
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/2/2012 3:57:23 PM   
mc3744


Posts: 1957
Joined: 3/9/2004
From: Italy
Status: offline
Bomb Efate's port from Noumea. Just a few bombers would be enough to build up enough damage to stop (or greatly slow down) the airfield build up.
Especially given Japanese building capabilities.
Without airfield Efate will slowly become a trap for the troops stationed there, more of a liability than a conquered territory.

Just my two cents

_____________________________

Nec recisa recedit

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 168
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/4/2012 10:56:31 AM   
Dixie


Posts: 10147
Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
Status: offline
3rd Feb 1942

SINGAPORE & MALAYA
Japanese forces now hold the island 'fortress' after breaking through the much weakened British defences. Although it is viewed as a blow back home, in military circles it is one less problem to deal with.

SS Trusty has sunk another Japanese barge with gunfire in the Malacca Strait. Two days and two sinkings, just a shame they aren't real ships


DUTCH EAST INDIES
CL Sumatra now sits on the bottom of the sea, sunk by Japanese carrier aircraft. At least on Japanese TF broke out into the Indian Ocean and launched a short range strike on the damaged Dutch vessel.

SS Stingray was cheated of a kill by dud torpedoes. To make matters worse the destroyer she targeted has smacked the US sub about quite badly. Although in no danger of sinking, Stingray is going to need some time at a proper repair yard.

The northern carrier TF has vanished, presumably out of recce range from Java. Lucky for me that there is no Allied shipping in the Indian Ocean, if GBL is trying to disrupt my convoys he's barking up the wrong tree... If he's attempting a KB strike on Ceylon then he's S.O.L. as the Royal Navy are not at home.


SOUTH PACIFIC
All quiet down here for now. Sigint intercepts indicate that a Japanese convoy is heading to Luganville with engineers on board. Several US submarines have been ordered to adjust their patrol areas in an effort to intercept the convoy.

In other news, Enterprise and her escorts have put to sea. A Japanese carrier TF has been identified at Efate, the plan is to launch one of her DB squadrons to land at Noumea, from here they will attempt a strike on the Japanese ships (CVLs?) whilst Big E lurks safely out of counter attack range. Of course, I may get lucky and actually manage to damage on of the carriers with a sub attack. The goal is less about sinking the Japanese ships and more focused on making GBL move them away so that more troops can be unloaded at Noumea.


INDIA
By shuffling around the small pools of surplus aircraft it has been possible to free a small pool of P-38E fighters to fully equip the 25th PS who are on their way to India and even provide a small reserve of extra fighters. With May's planned production there should be sufficient aircraft to cope until the P-38F enters production. It's a pity that their experience is probably the lowest of the squadrons assigned to the 10th AF but some intensive training should help to solve that issue.
The other 10th AF squadrons are equipped with the more reliable P-40E, if only there were some P-47s available...


CHINA
I still hate the Chinese front. The IJA is able to defeat all but the largest Chinese garrisons, but any attempt to gather a sufficiently large Chinese force in one location rapidly outstrips the supplies available With only a handful of transport aircraft available to the CATF, decisions need to be made.

Hopefully the AVG will see some action tomorrow, all three squadrons are well rested and I'm considering shifting two groups across to Changsha to try and ambush GBL's high level Tojo sweeps.


USA
Supplies and troops continue to pile up along the West Coast. The arrival of two more USMC raider forces may be a useful addition. In the short term they are suitable to garrison a couple of secondary bases in the Pacific, in the long term they will be useful to support the initial stages of the US drive across the Pacific.

The main deficiency is in decent base forces, nowhere near enough of these vital units are available. The biggest unit is the USMC aviation base force, it's able to support 90 aircraft but has no radar, engineers or integral AA ability.

(in reply to mc3744)
Post #: 169
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/4/2012 5:46:06 PM   
Dixie


Posts: 10147
Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
Status: offline
4th Feb 1942

PHILIPPINES
With Singapore under the Japanese heel only the American garrison at Bataan remains as a bastion of Allied troops within the Japanese perimeter. Luckily they seem to be performing far better than the Brits did in their fortress. Not only does the US position tie up Japanese troops it also denies the Japanese access to Manila
Despite almost continual Japanese air raids the US position is nicely fortified (lvl 3), in conjunction with the jungle terrain this makes the base a tough nut to crack. A Japanese attack was repulsed with heavy casualties on the Japanese side. Although the US forces were also knocked about during the battle they also managed to destroy two Japanese units, a nice little bonus!

quote:

Ground combat at Bataan (78,77)

Japanese Deliberate attack

Attacking force 43665 troops, 538 guns, 451 vehicles, Assault Value = 1306

Defending force 30539 troops, 660 guns, 658 vehicles, Assault Value = 914

Japanese adjusted assault: 615

Allied adjusted defense: 2769

Japanese assault odds: 1 to 4 (fort level 3)

Combat modifiers
Defender: terrain(+), leaders(+), experience(-)
Attacker:

Japanese ground losses:
1751 casualties reported
Squads: 75 destroyed, 102 disabled
Non Combat: 45 destroyed, 191 disabled
Engineers: 22 destroyed, 21 disabled
Guns lost 19 (16 destroyed, 3 disabled)
Vehicles lost 99 (30 destroyed, 69 disabled)
Units destroyed 2


Allied ground losses:
719 casualties reported
Squads: 30 destroyed, 48 disabled
Non Combat: 22 destroyed, 67 disabled
Engineers: 5 destroyed, 28 disabled
Vehicles lost 32 (1 destroyed, 31 disabled)


Assaulting units:
Kanno Detachment
16th Recon Regiment
2nd Tank Regiment
Tanaka Detachment
47th Infantry Regiment
7th Tank Regiment
48th Engineer Regiment
16th Engineer Regiment
20th Infantry Regiment
4th Tank Regiment
4th Division
65th Brigade
1st Formosa Inf. Regiment
48th Recon Regiment
21st Ind. Engineer Regiment
9th Infantry Regiment
3rd Ind. Engineer Regiment
Kimura Det
Kure 1st SNLF
Yokosuka 3rd SNLF
39th Road Const Co
1st Medium Field Artillery Regiment
3rd Engineer Construction Battalion
40th Field AA Battalion
8th Medium Field Artillery Regiment
30th Fld AA Gun Co
37th Const Co
9th Ind.Hvy.Art. Battalion
15th Ind.Art.Mortar Battalion
38th Road Const Co
2nd Ind.Art.Mortar Battalion
31st Fld AA Gun Co
48th Field Artillery Regiment
48th JAAF AF Bn
45th Field AA Battalion
47th Field AA Battalion
14th JAAF AF Coy

Defending units:
3rd/45th PS Inf Battalion
4th Marine Regiment
Manila Bay Defenses
2nd/45th PS Inf Battalion
14th PS Engineer Regiment
4th PA Constabulary Regiment
1st PA Constabulary Regiment
31st Infantry Regiment
21st PA Infantry Division
57th PS Infantry Regimental Combat Team
192nd Tank Battalion
194th Tank Battalion
11th PA Infantry Division
31st PA Infantry Division
1st/45th PS Inf Battalion
86th PS Coastal Artillery Battalion
26th PS Cavalry Regiment
2nd PA Constblry HW Regiment
I Philippine Corps
Far East USAAF
Provisional GMC Grp
1st PI Base Force
88th PS Field Artillery Regiment
803rd Engineer Aviation Battalion
202nd PA Construction Battalion
Asiatic Fleet
201st PA Construction Battalion
200th & 515th Coast AA Regiment
Bataan USN Base Force
301st Construction Battalion
1st USMC AA Battalion
Clark Field USAAF Base Force
301st PA Field Artillery Regiment



DUTCH EAST INDIES
Once again a promising attack by a US submarine was foiled by crappy torpedoes This time Pickerel hit a Japanese destroyer with a torpedo which failed to explode. Obviously the destroyer crew were not too happy and subjected Pickerel to a sustained DC attack. She's taken some flood damage but nothing too severe so she will remain on station for now.


SOUTH PACIFIC
The largest B-17 raid of the SOPAC theater so far was launched, with three aircraft attacking the Japanese held island of Luganville. They were intercepted by fighters from a nearby carrier, analysis of radio intercepts and aircraft markings indicate that the fighters were from Shoho.


INDIA (but not really)
It's not part of India, but it is under British control so Diego Garcia gets lumped in with the subcontinent. The DG garrison force has finally arrived on the island. The Winnipeg Grenadiers are another unit that was salvaged from the disaster that was the British campaign east of India. Although the grenadiers are only a small unit they should be able to hold off any small scale assaults on DG. Whilst the island is not vital to the Allied effort it will make things much easier if I can keep hold of the island.

Another wave of reinforcements is due to arrive inside the next fortnight, mostly air units with a few LCUs thrown in. More Australians are arriving at Aden whilst a USMC Battalion is arriving at Cape Town, from here they will head to either DG or Addu. Several USAAF fighter squadrons are also arriving at Capetown along with a Canadian fighter squadron. The US fighters are currently planned to form the basis of the US fighter force in Australia with the Canadians heading to India.


CHINA
The AVG 2nd squadron saw their first combat in a series of combats above Nanyang. The squadron managed a total of 10 kills in return for one aircraft lost in a crash landing. A good effort which I am quite pleased with.

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 170
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/4/2012 6:19:11 PM   
geofflambert


Posts: 4381
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From: St. Louis
Status: offline
Nit Picker here. Luganville is a town and a base. Espiritu Santo is the Island.

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 171
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/4/2012 6:29:31 PM   
geofflambert


Posts: 4381
Joined: 12/23/2010
From: St. Louis
Status: offline
About the fortifying you've done while under air attack, it burns me up that the engineers are forced to repair ports and airfields before they can advance fortifications. It makes no sense to get those nice and ready to go for when the other side inevitably captures the base.





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Post #: 172
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/4/2012 6:43:07 PM   
Dixie


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From: UK
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: geofflambert

Nit Picker here. Luganville is a town and a base. Espiritu Santo is the Island.


I'm going to pretend I meant that as a deliberate typo, just to see who's paying attention

(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 173
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/5/2012 4:35:25 PM   
Dixie


Posts: 10147
Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
Status: offline
5th Feb

Overall a very quiet day today. The only action of any note took place near Espiritu Santo...

SOUTH PACIFIC
The presence of an IJN carrier group was confired when USS Seal spotted and attack the light carrier Shoho near Espiritu Santo, rather predictably the attack failed when the torpedoes failed to detonate. A further attack by Seal in the afternoon had the same outcome after an attack was launched on a destroyer. This was followed by a depth charging which left the submarine damaged enough that her patrol has been cut short. Not exactly how I envisaged the attacks performing. Happily a replacement boat is patrolling near Efate, with more boats already en route from Brisbane.

DUTCH EAST INDIES
Very little to report beside a few small raids from Singapore against Dutch forces in Sumatra.

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 174
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/7/2012 10:17:08 AM   
Dixie


Posts: 10147
Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
Status: offline
6th February 1942

SOUTH PACIFIC
A Japanese carrier group has been spotted some 300 miles SE of Noumea, heading towards the SW. Does GBL have an actual plan, or is he just hoping to sweep up some Allied ships? Sadly for him there are no ships at sea unless he is willing to make a long trek into Allied territory.

Enterprise has sent one of her SBD squadrons to Noumea, hopefully they will managae to land some ordinance on the deck of a Jap carrier. A more likely outcome is that they will get themselves shot up for no gain. Their presence may also cause GBL to attempt a carrier hunt, thus wasting more fuel as Enterprise will be safely sheltered under the Allied air umbrella.

Meanwhile, USS Seal has spotted a large gathering of Japanese shipping near Espiritu Santo including battleships and several transports. Once again however, a promising attack was foiled by shoddy torpedoes and Seal was damaged.


EAST INDIES
Sadly, the dud torpedoes seem to be spreading to the Dutch boats. Contacts were gained at several locations but the torpedoes either failed to explode or missed altogether. At least the Dutch boats avoided taking damage in the counter attacks.


AUSTRALIA
A pair of Japanese carriers (one is Soryu) has pitched up in the Timor Sea, sinking a Dutch seaplane carrier at Darwin. Once again though, Allied planning has shifted all non-essential shipping away from the area leaving the Japanese carriers with few targets.


INDIA
No action, but I feel that my coastal belt is strong enough to hold the line should a Japanese invasion land along the Bengal coast. There are plenty of engineers stuffed into the area who are frantically throwing together fortifications. Level 5 is the bare minimum I want before I'll be actually happy.
A few RAF squadrons are now suffiiently trained to be deployed nearer the front lines.


The sighting of various TFs seems to indicate that GBL has split his carriers into pairs. One pair (of light carriers) is in the SOPAC area, one pair is in the Timor Sea, one pair is 'somewhere west of Java' whilst the third pair are at large.
The presence of Japanese battleships at Espiritu Santo would appear to indicate something big is in the works for GBL soon, so it's almost tempting to launch a carrier strike of my own on somewhere like Wake Island whilst his carriers etc are otherwise engaged.

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 175
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/16/2012 5:07:52 PM   
Dixie


Posts: 10147
Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
Status: offline
7th & 8th Feb 1942

South Pacific
The Japanese light carrier TF has swept past Noumea, on the 7th the TF was spotted by long range patrols from NZ apparently on a course towards the Northern Island. The Allied warships and faster merchant ships were ordered to head away from Auckland and make a dash for safety in case of an attack on the port.
The 8th saw the carriers reverse course and swing back towards Noumea. The last sighting report has the carriers positioned some 120 miles from Norfolk Island, however the nearest shipping is near Tasmania so they won't find much to attack...

The loitering carriers are making it tricky to sneak reinforcements into Noumea, however there can't be a lot of fuel available for sustained operations at GBL's front line bases.


Dutch East Indies
Despite a Japanese division showing up at Bandoeng, the defenders there have managed to hold back the attack for a short while. Collapse is probably imminent though, thereby splitting Java into two parts.

The confined waters of the Java Sea have also led to a reduction in Allied submarine patrols as IJN ASW has been slowly grinding away at the Allied naval forces. Although only a handful of subs have actually been sunk plenty have been damaged enough to require time in a major shipyard. Just 15 submarines remain operational in this area from the Dutch and US fleets that started the war, lucky for me the IJN is not too sharp when it comes to ASW ops...


India
An interesting development has occured. Hiryu has rocked up to the SE of Ceylon, somehow eluding the US and RAF patrol aircraft based on the island I was expecting some sort of carrier attack after a Japanese TF went into the Indian Ocean but (a) I thought I had a couple more days and (b) I thought the patrols might see something. The result is a selection of small merchants and corvettes sunk to airstrikes.

This smells of a trap to me, I'm fairly certain that more than one carrier left the East Indies and unless GBL is more reckless than I thought it's a massive risk to send a single carrier this far from home. The RN will not be playing this game just yet, slowly, slowly catchy monkey... There is quite probably another carrier sat just over the horizon and losing another carrier right now would be a waste. I've been expecting just such an effort from GBL, so the ports at Trinco and Colombo are empty of useful targets. A few small transports are in the port just in case GBL takes a look at the harbour but there's nothing on the island that I can't afford to lose.

In a way I want to encourage GBL to continue these long distance sorties with pairs of carriers, it will burn up his fuel reserves and eventually put his carriers at risk. In a one on one situation it's possible for the RN to triumph especially if I can keep the IJN at arm's length (i.e. out of torpedo range). In the meantime I can hope that the Swordfish or Vildebeest get lucky and put a fish into something.
With Singapore now in Japanese hands this is the most likely destination for the carriers post raid, because of this there has been a redeployment of Allied submarine patrols. A pair of RN subs (with their useful torps) has been ordered to patrol the most direct route for the Japanese ships.




WE upgraded to the latest patch for the last turn, with the result that I can reactivate some of my LCUs. I was looking through the list to see what was available when I noticed that III Indian Corps was not in the destroyed units list. A quick check of the reinforcements list and it appears that Winston has given me a nice present and I'm getting a free Corps HQ! They show up in 24 days at Aden, hopefully I can change the command from Malaya Army though, otherwise they'll be stuck there for the whole war. Air HQ Far East and two RAF group HQs are also due to rock up in a few weeks. Still, free stuff is not a bad thing!

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 176
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/17/2012 9:28:53 PM   
Dixie


Posts: 10147
Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
Status: offline
9th Feb 1942

South Pacific
Yet another course change by the light carrier TF that GBL is traipsing around the South Pacific, this time the carriers have made a quick dash towards the Australian coast. There aren't many important targets around, but there are a few smaller ships, naval and merchant, in the area. Partly because they lack the speed to make it to a safe distance and partly because if GBL spots them it may cause him to loiter a bit longer and put him at increased risk(!) from LBA in Oz.
Enterprise has disembarked her entire air group now, hoping to catch one of the IJN carriers with a crafty long range strike... At least one of the VS-6 patrol aircraft was spotted by the carriers yesterday, whether or not this will convince GBL that my carriers are at sea or not is another matter. Most likely the carriers will either head north or east, but I have to be prepared for a raid on SE Australia.




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Post #: 177
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/17/2012 9:49:24 PM   
Dixie


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Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
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INDIA & BURMA

It's not going well for the Brits and Indians in Burma, their retreat has been cut off and the remaining troops are outnumbered. I'm hoping that the LCUs will be able to split up and evade pursuit by sneaking through the jungle. Unlikely I know, but there's a chance so the infantry have been ordered to head off in different directions in the hope that at least one of them will eventually reach friendly lines. A couple of the brigaeds are almost at full strength with Indian Inf squads, so rescuing those chaps would be a nice bonus.
With the Japanese slowly pushing ever closer to the Indian border and with RAF training beginning to show results there has been a trickle of British and Indian squadrons moving towards Calcutta ready to positively leap into action, as long as the Japanese don't shoot back much. The arrival of 232 Sqn and their Hurricanes has allowed 67 Sqn to head to a more suitable location to retire their Buffaloes in return for more Hurricanes. The Buffs will initially be sent on to the Kiwis of 488 Sqn who are lagging behind in their training.


Meanwhile the Japanese carrier force near Ceylon is wandering away to the East, there are a handful of targets in that direction and it would appear that my experienced FAA pilots do not fancy being shot down by Zeroes and they stayed at home today.


More of an update tomorrow when I'm not so busy!




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(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 178
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/19/2012 1:00:13 PM   
Dixie


Posts: 10147
Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
Status: offline
10th Feb 1942

quote:

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, March 10, 1942, takes pleasure in presenting the Distinguished Flying Cross to Captain G Rutins, United States Army, for valorous achievement on 9 February 1942 while serving as a bomber Pilot in Command during Operations in the South Pacific.

NARRATIVE TO ACCOMPANY AWARD: For his exceptionally valorous performance of duty while attacking a Japanese naval force under heavy fire on 9 February 1942 in the South Pacific area of operations. Captain Rutin's achievements as lead pilot of a formation of three B-17 bombers, Flight Lead and Air Mission Commander, were nothing short of remarkable and indicative of the highest professionalism of aviators in combat. During the recent struggle in the South Pacific a Japanese aircraft carrier task force was spotted by Allied patrol aircraft based on Noumea. With the squadron commander undergoing medical care Captain Rutins volunteered to lead an immediate attack on the Japanese task force despite the considerable distance between the target's last reported position and his home base as well as the inexperience of his unit. Captain Rutin lead his formation of three B-17 Flying Fortress bombers in a long range flight to the approximate location of the Japanese force, upon arriving in the area Captain Rutin organised a search for the Japanese fleet. The fleet was duly located and, despite heavy opposition, Capt Rutin lead his flight in a bombing attack from altitude. In the process his aircraft was heavily damaged but Captain Rutin continued his exemplary flying and as a result several bombs were seen to impact on a Japanese aircraft carrier, leaving the ship in flames. Despite the damage suffered to his aircraft Captain Rutin also successfully led his formation back to their home airfield. Captain Rutin's actions helped deter a Japanese attack on Australia and strike a material blow to the enemy as well as saving three valuable aircraft and crews for further service.




South Pacific
A nice little bonus for the Allies today, a long range B-17 flight managed to put a bomb through Shoho (from 11k) and caused a fuel explosion to boot. Not bad considering that the squadron pilots all had naval experience in the 20-30 range. In tandem with the damage suffered to docked ships at Espiritu Santo perhaps this will cause GBL to re-evalute his naval operations near Allied LBA. But probably not. I'm not sure what status Shoho is in, but surely a massive fuel explosion will require some dockyard time?

With the carriers seemingly retreating it may be the right time to sneak some merchant ships across from Oz to NZ and on to the US, as well as topping up the Noumea garrison forces. The conversion of three old destroyers into fast transports will help with the second goal. Not a lot though.


Dutch East Indies
Not to be outdone, the Dutch managed to plant a bomb into a Japanese freighter today. The report indicated several vehicles knocked out or damaged, so it appears that an armoured unit is heading into Java.

Japanese fighter sweeps are slowly but surely wearing down the remaining Dutch fighter in Soerbaja. Even with an altitude advantage the Dutch aircraft are severely outmatched.


China
The AVG clashed with a small unit of high flying Japanese fighters above Chagsha, the Tojo fighters proved to be superior to the US Hawks however and despite shooting down one Japanese fighter three US aircraft were written off due to combat damage.


Burma
Somehow the retreating Indian forces fleeing from Rangoon are managing to hold off the Japanese attacks. Lucky for me the Japs are so disorganised. Both forces went into the combat with a paper strength of approx 100 AV, the Brits were adjusted to 29 with the Japs down to a mere 9(!) AV. It's only a matter of time until the field is leveled however, especially given the open nature of the terrain they are in.

(in reply to Dixie)
Post #: 179
RE: No Way to Fight a War (Dixie vs GBL) - 2/27/2012 4:55:31 PM   
Dixie


Posts: 10147
Joined: 3/10/2006
From: UK
Status: offline
11th & 12th February 1942

On the face of things not a lot has happened in the past two days in terms of action. However, whilst walking the dog last night something clicked into place leading me to make a (probably unwarranted) leap of judgement...

INDIA & BURMA
The Indian troops in Southern Burma have been surrounded by Japanese forces. Barring a miracle it looks grim for these chaps. I suppose it'll even out against the troops saved from Singapore, otherwise GBL would have nothing to form his Indian National Army from in 1944

However, the continued presence of the KB in the East Indies along with a large gathering of warships and LCUs at Singapore would indicate that something is afoot in the near future. Intel reports as well as sighting info have identified several large warships (cruiser sized upwards) in addition to the known presence of IJN carrier forces. While it is possible that GBL is planning a major drive on Java the sheer amount of warships would be overkill for an invasion there. This leads me to believe that an invasion of India may be coming sooner rather than later. Not great but could be worse...
In particular I am worried about Diamond Harbour where the Indian 19th Division is the major garrison force, but they are understrength. To remedy this a couple of Aussie brigades are heading here. Another option is to move some forces from Madras.
Perhaps Ceylon is the target, in which case there's nothing I can really do right now.

Of course, this could all be wide of the mark....



The Allies are buggered in terms of aerial support There are only half a dozen fighter squadrons ready for combat (4 Hurricanes, 1 Mohawk and the AVG/1st Sqn) plus another two AVG units in China. If things really go wrong, then there are another handful of squadrons which could step up to the line, however most are not experienced enough to be relied upon. If things really go wrong then the last resort is the FAA supply of Fulmars and the Kiwi Buffaloes. Bad times indeed. The bomber squadrons are more experienced but the replacement pools are none existent making them a one shot weapon. Most of the bombers are trained in ground attack ops, but there are three torpedo bomber units which could (with some luck) make a mess of any Jap ships.

The AVG 1st Squadron is being recalled to India where they will re-equip with the P-40E while other Allied squadrons are moving towards the Bengal region. The US 30th BS has upgraded to the B-17E and the 11th BS has flown into Ceylon from Java.






quote:

Rumours were abounding that the Japanese had massed an invasion fleet at Singapore and that a mighty armada had set forth to conquer the Raj. A state of near panic began to settle over many in command as hysteria began to spread through both the civilian population and the military forces. The fear was particularly pronounced in the civil servants and those troops who had heard about the Japanese prowess in Malaya. In response to the growing panic Wavell was forced to redeploy Australian troops from the Madras region to maintai order near Calcutta, the Australians at this time being the only forces above battalion size that Wavell trusted to hold their nerve.

-No Way To Fight A War, Kipling Publishing, 1975


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< Message edited by Dixie -- 2/27/2012 5:03:49 PM >

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