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Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies

 
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Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 7/28/2012 12:43:44 AM   
gwgardner

 

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The initial stages of our rematch Fall Gelb, between me and Chocolino, have proceeded pretty much as one would expect: the fall of France, the beginning of an intense Battle of the Atlantic and Med, and a transfer of focus from northern Europe to the Med.

It is now Feb '40, and the Germans have conquered continental France, the Low Countries, Denmark, Yugoslavia, and invaded Greece. The Italians are tasked with taking the French possessions in North Africa.

The British early on abandoned the fight in France and transferred their mobile forces to Tunisia, in an effort to punish the Italians should they enter the war. After they did enter, the British mobile forces struck hard for Tripoli, but the Italians, with the assistance of German air, were able to hold on and have gained the upper hand.

Until French N. Africa falls, which it will, it remains a base for air ops against Italian sub raiders and shipping.






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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 7/28/2012 12:46:02 AM   
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If the Allies can hold out in Greece long enough, any further efforts by the Axis to finish off France in Syria will take much needed forces away from their effort against the Soviet Union. The Germans are already amassing infantry forces on the Soviet border.





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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 7/28/2012 12:47:13 AM   
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It's a lost cost in Greece, but it's all about delaying the German successes, and using Crete in the ASW war.




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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 7/28/2012 4:31:23 PM   
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Russia prepares for war:






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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 8/1/2012 3:46:21 PM   
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Late Feb '41

Recon from Crete shows that the Germans have been quick to pull their armor out of mainland Greece, after Athens fell last week. Why the very quick recall?

Ominously, the Soviet radio intercepts have discovered the presence of German armored units in Poland.

In Cairo, speculation is that the Germans may attempt to pressure or even attack Turkey, in order to gain access to Syria. The Foreign Office is making every diplomatic effort to forestall any Bulgarian alignment with the Axis, as that would be critical to any German move south.

The Royal Air Force has relocated all N. African assets to Crete and Malta, in anticipation of a quick Italian takeover of Tunisia, Algeria, and Morocco. The last French garrison units in Tunis have withdrawn also, for Syria. The French govt. in exile is now established in Damascus.

With the Royal Navy being forced to pull out all its aircraft carriers from the Med, for maintenance and repair, the French Navy is the only substantial allied naval presence in the Eastern Med. The Western Med is for all practical purposes, an Italian sea - for the moment.

< Message edited by gwgardner -- 8/1/2012 3:51:51 PM >

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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 8/3/2012 8:24:57 PM   
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March '41

The situation in the Med has seriously deteriorated. With the fall of Greece, the Luftwaffe has extended its sway over the Aegean and Central-Eastern Med. Heavy losses by the RAF in Crete have forced a complete evacuation of that island.

Worse still, the Luftwaffe was able to perform strikes against the French fleet and damaged the lone French carrier so much that it will be forced into Alexandria, with no hope of repair. French funds are in the negative now, and there are no British funds available to subsidize the French. We can only hope that aide from across the Atlantic might reach us, and eventually allow that French carrier to be repaired. In the meantime it will be towed the long way around Africa to drydock in the UK.

At this point it's a waiting game. Where will the Axis strike next?

Reinforcements from Britain are underway for Egypt, but they too must take the long route around the Cape.

Right now the home islands are still vulnerable. If the Germans wanted to head West rather than East, there's little to stop them.

< Message edited by gwgardner -- 8/3/2012 8:27:22 PM >

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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 8/18/2012 12:41:24 AM   
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All winter and Spring Stavka has been preparing for a decisive, short strike against Finland, hoping to head off the rumored alliance between that country and Germany.

In mid April, just before the ground would begin to thaw, the strike was launched.

Plans started going awry from the beginning, as the thaw took place, causing the armored spearheads to slow to a crawl and lose effectiveness. To make matters much worse, the Axis decided to come to the aid of Finland and now the Kremlin is faced with war on a much wider front.

Following a long-planned strategy, as soon as the Axis declared war, the Kremlin launched a push into Hungary - which was ostensibly neutral, but leaning quite clearly to joining the Axis. The hope is to push deep into Hungary, forcing the Germans to commit forces there.






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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 8/18/2012 12:42:49 AM   
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A key part of the Finnish attack is a quick stab in the north, so that Soviet forces there can be soon repositioned to the south.




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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 8/18/2012 12:45:02 AM   
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In Egypt, The UK has been building up its forces. With the Italians inactive on that front - apparently taking its sweet time to bring forces forward from Tobruk, the British decided to launch a short attack towards El Alemain.

The attack has begun with massive aerial bombardments of Italian frontline troops.




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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 8/18/2012 7:31:22 PM   
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May 1941

The plan for the Hungarian campaign is to distract the Germans from their main push into the Soviet Union.

It was expected that the supply line through Lviv would be cut off quickly, and the planned next step is for the Soviet troops to disperse deep into the Hungarian countryside, harassing and disrupting for as long as possible.






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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 8/19/2012 9:16:40 PM   
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May 9

Italian troops withdrew from El Alemain without firing a shot. Recon hasn't found any Italian reinforcement effort, and zero presence by their air force, so, consideration is being made for continuing the offensive, perhaps even to threaten Tobruk.






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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 8/22/2012 4:21:33 PM   
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May 9

With all available military resources being desperately needed in the south, the Finns wrote off Petsamo, and Soviet forces entered the town this week. Thus releasing 2 bomber and 1 fighter squadrons for action in the south. It will take longer to shift the ground forces, given the ground and weather conditions - perhaps 6 -8 weeks.

Helsinki has been invested by 1 infantry and two tank corps. The Wermacht transported a division of German infantry to Helsinki, but it has been relentlessly hammered from the air and sea since debarking, and has been shattered for all practical purposes.

Meanwhile, German forces approach Minsk and Riga. Each city is defended by a strong corps, but Stavka has been ordered not to expend too many resources in defense of these cities. Instead, the strategy is to delay, delay, delay, allowing Soviet forces build up farther in the interior.

There is little evidence that the Germans have committed their entire strength to the Eastern Front. Worry is building that they may attempt an end-around move through Turkey.

< Message edited by gwgardner -- 8/22/2012 4:25:35 PM >

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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 8/25/2012 6:41:39 PM   
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June 9 '41

While the invasion of Finland has been successful in its initial goals, it remains to be seen if it will be a success strategically, since the Germans have established a strong position, with a secure port, in the west of the country.

The Russian navy has taken extremely heavy losses in support of the Finnish campaign, especially in remaining at sea long enough to help with the taking of Helsinki. But now it is effectively destroyed.

Stavka has been ordered to establish a defensive line west of Helsinki, and to pull back all armored forces from the front lines, as they have been taking serious losses unsupported by infantry.






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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 8/25/2012 6:56:45 PM   
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The Italians have taken Malta, and already recon shows that they are sending more forces to North Africa. Therefore the advance beyond El Alemain has been halted until we discover if there will be a German contingent. If that happens, we will pull back to more secure supply lines.





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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 9/12/2012 4:16:07 PM   
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mid-August 1941

The Germans are approaching Leningrad, Smolensk, Kursk, and have flanked the defenses of Rostov. Reinforcements to any location on the front are almost non-existent, with production way down. At this point, with probably two full months of good campaigning weather still ahead, it seems that Germany can advance wherever they will.

In North Africa, the Italians have finally launched the opening rounds of their offensive against Egypt, with heavy bombardment and air strikes against British air bases. The British will fall back to prepared positions at El Alemain, but will have to abandon those positions if the Italians succeed in gaining air superiority.





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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 9/28/2012 2:25:33 PM   
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Dec 1

The Russian Front is relatively stabilized due to inclement weather. However, in the Caucasus, where the weather is not so severe, the Germans have concentrated their armor and are continuing the push. They have already taken important oil production centers, and now threaten to cut off convoys to Sevastopol.




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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 9/28/2012 2:27:57 PM   
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In the north, the Finnish and Leningrad fronts are strongly defended, but when campaigning weather returns, IF the Germans decide to position armor there, there's not a lot of depth of defense to stop them.




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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 9/28/2012 2:29:31 PM   
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Overall in the Russia, it's going to be a race during the Spring of '41 to shore up the front before the Germans make their major push.




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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 9/28/2012 2:32:53 PM   
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In Egypt, the expected Italian offensive never materialized. They have overwhelming superiority in numbers, but long, extended supply lines.




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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 9/28/2012 2:36:35 PM   
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Unable to counter-strike in Egypt, the British have decided to maintain a foothold in Morocco. If the US would provide military aid, this foothold could be the key to pushing the Italians out of Africa.

As it is, British convoys are very sporadic in supplying the troops in Morocco and Egypt. Most weeks, no convoys are run, due to continuing German sub attacks.




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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 10/13/2012 3:54:23 PM   
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mid-March '42

Things looking bleak for the Allies.

While the British have established a strong position in Morocco, the Axis have taken Egypt - so they can now address their problem farther west.

The Battle of the Atlantic has been decidedly in favor of the Axis. At current technology levels, their subs are able to elude Allied ASW. this is causing a heavy PP drain for the UK and the British colonies, who have to constantly replenish the transport pool.

The US stands idly by, with no sign of even offering aid.

In the Soviet Union, with the loss of all the Caucasus resources and the coming campaigning season, there's not a lot of hope left. As soon as German armor begins to push in good campaigning weather, there's nothing that will stop them. Just not enough PPs. IF the US Congress would approve Lend-lease, then that would help, but enough?






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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 10/21/2012 4:51:54 PM   
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May 1 '42

Campaigning season is just weeks or less away, and the Germans are already pushing hard against the defenses of Moscow. So far, the Leningrad and Stalingrad fronts are static.

Morale is crumbling among the Soviet populace, with conscriptions of both men and material at a war-emergency level. Industrial production has taken a plunge, as a consequence. At this moment, it looks inevitable that Moscow will fall, perhaps by July.






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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 10/21/2012 4:56:12 PM   
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The Western Allies aren't doing enough, as far as the Soviets are concerned, but in actuality UK and US efforts have stretched the limits of the possible.

The US populace is still not solidly behind the war, with only 40% of production capacity being utilized for war efforts. US war technology lags behind also. with US armored forces still utilizing prewar designs.

Only in strategic assets has the US accomplished much, with daylight bombing raids over German occupied territories increasing every week.

In North Africa, the AXIS seems to have written off Algeria and Tunisia. They are making little effort to resist the UK advance.






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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 10/27/2012 4:49:48 AM   
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July 1 '42

The Wermacht has succeeded in cutting Moscow off from the rest of the Soviet Union, but a strong force holds the city and suburbs. It is expected that resistance will continue, but eventually be picked apart, perhaps in 3 to 4 weeks.

So there will be approximately 8 to 10 weeks of good campaigning weather left to the Germans after the fall of Moscow. Enough time to either

1) continue the push in the central region, towards the industrial areas of the Urals;
2) redirect their attention to Stalingrad.

Best guess at this point is that Leningrad will still hold into the winter.




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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 10/27/2012 4:53:05 AM   
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Soviet armored forces are still quite weak at this point, with all resources being routed into setting up defensive infantry positions. It will be impossible to mount any kind of even local offensive even into 1943. Unless the Western Allies do something substantial to force a repositioning of German armor to the west, the Soviet Union will fall in 1943.

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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 10/30/2012 1:54:41 PM   
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Aug 1 42

Very, very bleak for the good guys. Moscow has fallen, Stalingrad is in the crosshairs of the Wermacht now, and it has been flanked - soon to be cut off from any rail connection to the rest of the country. Same with Leningrad. Even along the Finnish front, the Finns are relentlessly pushing forward to cut off the rail line to Artic ports.

Not that that US is sending any aid! The US Congress dawdles, and has not approved lend-lease.

In North Africa, the Italians with minimal German support, have stabilized the situation in Tunisia. If one or two German armored corps were transferred to Tunisia, the Allied front would crumble quickly.

The Battle of the Atlantic is critical now, and for the moment totally in the favor of the AXIS. The US has sent a fleet with 5 escort carriers to the southern waters, in an attempt to punish the Italian sub fleet, which has completely cut off all supplies from the British Colonies. The UK is being slowly strangled.

In the strategic bombing campaign, both the British and the US continue raids over France, Belgium, and the Netherlands. Luftwaffe fighters have so far been successfull in defending the Ruhr industrial area, causing devastating losses for Allied bombers.

In short, mid 42, the Soviet Union is about to collapse, and the Western Allies are stymied.

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RE: Fall Gelb - rematch - the Allies - 10/30/2012 4:37:25 PM   
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August 9th 42

The Soviet Union surrendered, seeking terms, today. As a consequence, the Western Allies are seeking terms too.

Chocolino played it very well indeed.

Now after two games between us using reduced PPs for all majors, I come to the conclusion that the Allies and Soviets just do not have enough PPs to do both research and production at a hard level of play.

I think I would play on normal levels next time, but go into the data files and reduce production by about 10 or 15% for all majors.

It will be interesting to play again using patch 1.03+, with the new manpower rules, new convoy protection rules, etc.

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