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Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:43:57 AM   
acbennett3


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Background:
July of 1953 Armistice negotiations in Korea fall apart. In response the UN forces launch a massive strategic bombing campaign of North Korea to drive them and the Chinese back to the table. The Chinese and North Koreans desperately plead with the Soviets for assistance and in response the newly appointed Premier Khrushchev cuts off Berlin again. The newly elected President Eisenhower protests and restarts the Berlin Airlift. This time the Soviets vow not to allow a repeat of 1949 and aggressively interdict the US flights to Berlin w/their fighters. This leads to 2 midair collisions between Soviet fighters and a US fighter and a cargo plane. Inevitably an American fighter shoots down a Soviet Mig getting to close to a cargo plane. In response both opposing squadrons engage in a massive dogfight over Berlin with loses on both sides. This starts the shooting war in the air and the ground war is soon to follow. The Soviets lay siege to Berlin and stream across the nascent West German border. Then, in hindsight what is a strategic miscalculation, the Soviets drop two atomic bombs on NATO troop concentrations near Hamburg and Hannover.

In response President Eisenhower, not wanting to utilize atomic weapons on West German soil, orders a counter strike on the Kola peninsula…
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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:44:54 AM   
acbennett3


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Forces:
To support the President's orders the 11th Bombardment Wing (26th, 42nd, 98th Bombardment Squadrons) based at Carswell AFB Fort Worth, Texas and made up of 27 B-36D's is dispersed/forward deployed to the recently completed Thule AFB in Greenland. With NATO activated the northern Norwegian airbases near the Soviet border are available for NATO use. The US 12th Fighter Escort Wing, tasked with the air defense of Norway, deploys 2 squadrons (560th and 561st) of F-84G's to Bardufoss Air Base. The Norwegians concentrate their 2 squadrons (331st and 334th) of F-84G's at Bodo Air Base. The plan is to use the 4 squadrons to clear the air in front of the B-36D's and then escort them in to the numerous military targets on the peninsula.

The Soviets are known to have 5 PVO Airbases spread across the Kola Peninsula each assumed to have 1 squadron of Mig-15bis assigned to air defense…

Plan:
The 11th Wing will launch from Thule and then 2 squadrons will transit to the Norwegian coast and the 3rd squadron will come over the pole and approach the Kola Peninsula from the North. The Fighter Escort squadrons will launch as the B-36's approach their pre-attack run positions. The B-36's will then break up into 3 aircraft flight formations (called the "Hometown" formation) and begin their attack runs led and escorted by 4-5 aircraft flights of F-84's. One squadron/3 flights of B-36's will approach from North of the Peninsula, and the other 2 squadrons/6 flights will approach from the West over Norway/Sweden. They will attempt to simultaneously arrive over the Soviet border in order to swamp the Soviet Defenses. Easier said than done…





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:45:41 AM   
acbennett3


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In the below image the 3 B-36D squadrons have completed taking off from Thule and formed up into squadron formations. They are now in transit to their assembly areas before the attack run.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:46:30 AM   
acbennett3


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In this image the 2 squadrons of B-36's have arrived near the Norwegian coast and broken up into their 3 aircraft flights. The 4 squadrons of F-84's have taken off and break into their 4/5 aircraft flights and start to form up and lead the B-36's.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:47:21 AM   
acbennett3


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In this image the 3 flights of B-36's coming from the North are beginning their attack run. To the southwest their F-84 escorts are closing. Unfortunately they are a bit too far away as we'll see later.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:48:06 AM   
acbennett3


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Coordinating the 9 flights of B-36's and supporting fighters to arrive at the border at the same time takes some work. I can begin to appreciate what it took to pull this off during WW2 - and why it was easy and dangerous for the bombers to arrive over their targets piecemeal.

Here is an image of the approach from the west over Norway/Sweden





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:48:49 AM   
acbennett3


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The northern approach was tougher - especially trying to get the escorts into position. I ended up sending 2 F-84 flights to the southeast with the idea of doing a fighter sweep, and sending the 3rd F-84 flight directly towards the approaching B-36 flights to provide escort - in hindsight this was a major mistake. Also the first enemy contact has appeared.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:49:35 AM   
acbennett3


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The 2 F-84 Flights performing the 'fighter sweep' begin to encounter and engage single Mig-15's attempting to identify the numerous contacts appearing on the Soviet radars. Initially this allows the groups of 4/5 F-84's to overwhelm the single Mig-15's one by one while losing a few F-84's.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:50:17 AM   
acbennett3


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Here's a cool image of a dogfight - the Mig-15 flew thru the a formation of F-84's and the F-84's are breaking in both directions to pursue him.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:51:07 AM   
acbennett3


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At this point I was feeling pretty good. The fighter sweep had shot down 5 Migs for the loss of 2 F-84s - an acceptable exchange rate - and no B-36's had been attacked yet. Then a contact appeared in front of the Northern B-36 flights and the Fighter Escort was still too far away…





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:51:43 AM   
acbennett3


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As a test of bomber defense, I had the first B-36 flight break up - I had them all head in different directions and two dived to 20k and 25k feet altitude.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:52:23 AM   
acbennett3


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The Mig-15 proceeded to shoot down 2 of the B-36's and here is pursuing the last in the flight. The F-84's kicked into afterburner to assist - but they were too late to the party.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:53:01 AM   
acbennett3


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The second B-36 flight I kept in formation to see if that was a better defense. The Mig-15 screamed in and succeeded in shooting down one B-36D. In the process though all three B-36's cut loose with their 20mm auto cannons and succeeded in shooting down the Mig-15. Interesting - I think I will keep the B-36's in their 3 ship flights.

Here you see everyone firing at each other - in the end the lead B-36 was shot down along with the Mig-15.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:53:23 AM   
acbennett3


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That's it for now.
At this point the losses are:
US - 2 F-84s/3 B-36s
USSR - 6 Mig-15s

Still not sure how things are going to end up. Taking on single Mig's with groups of F-84's seems to be pretty successful. But all it takes is 1 or 2 Migs getting to the bombers and all bets are off.

I hope to continue this in the next few days - real life and the release of FPC Red Storm permitting.


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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 5:59:59 AM   
Dimitris


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Veeeeery nice

Is this scen available for download somewhere? (I've been a little busy the last few ).

< Message edited by Sunburn -- 10/9/2013 6:00:38 AM >


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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 6:10:25 AM   
acbennett3


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Not yet - this is the first full scale test run. I setup a basic automated Soviet air defense for this test but have a few tweaks I want to do to make it better.

I will also use it as a template moving forward and inserting B-47/Mig-17, B-52/Mig-19, etc.

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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 8:59:13 AM   
.Sirius


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Hi,
Great scenario you have there cant wait to play it

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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/9/2013 11:39:18 AM   
Terminus


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NM

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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/10/2013 12:06:15 AM   
Cap Mandrake


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This thing looks great. Count me in. Here is what I imagine happening somewhere about post #6

*************SAC HQ, Omaha************


Partially dressed attractive young woman incongrously wearing high heels in bed: <phone rings, she answers> General Turgidson's residence.............no, I'm sorry, the Genral is indisposed at the moment..........yes........very well, <cups hand over phone and calls out to the General who is in the lavatory> BUCK! It's the Swedish ambassador calling from Washington. He says it's urgent. He asks why there are dozens of NATO bombers in Swedish airspace...............

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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/10/2013 5:12:07 AM   
acbennett3


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Swedish neutrality was something I thought about but skipped developing a rationale for - in nuclear warfare borders are irrelevant...

Anyway its late at night, most people are asleep, and the aircraft are at 40k ft - figured they wouldn't notice.
Besides its only 18 B-36's armed w/atomic weapons - what trouble could they cause?

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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/11/2013 1:36:51 AM   
acbennett3


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Returning to our story - we left w/the last remaining B-36 of one of the Northern flights fleeing a pursuing Mig-15. During the diving battle the B-36 successfully shot down the Mig denying him a clean sweep of the flight. Below is the moment of destruction for the Mig.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/11/2013 1:37:26 AM   
acbennett3


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The 2 fighter sweep flights continue to gobble up individual Migs. Eventually the Fighter escorts for one of the B-36 flights coming from the west over Sweden/Finalnd encounters Migs. Ultimately it ends w/1 F-84 shotdown, but both Migs destroyed.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/11/2013 1:38:06 AM   
acbennett3


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In the north it seems the luck is about to run out for the remaining member of the first flight of B-36's. The closing Fighter Escorts detect 1 Mig approaching from the southwest and turn to attack. But then a new bogey appears north of the remaining B-36. Two of the fighter escorts continue pursuing the first bogey, while the other two turn and light their afterburners to help the solo B-36. Will they make it this time? In the meantime the B-36 turns away and goes for the deck.




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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/11/2013 1:38:54 AM   
acbennett3


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The B-36 dives with the Mig following. Meanwhile one of the F-84's is just beginning to enter firing range of the Mig. The Mig and B-36 exchange fire and the Mig blows up! I thought the B-36 was going to be named "Lucky" after this, but a few seconds later it also went down probably due to damage from the Mig's shot. Below is the image of them exchanging fire.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/11/2013 1:39:41 AM   
acbennett3


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More bogeys begin to be detected over the northern approach and border of Norway and the USSR. Dogfights start in multiple locations. Multiple F-84's attacking single Migs gives the US the advantage, but F-84s continue to be shot down also. Who will run out of fighters/ammo/fuel first? I purposely resist turning on God mode to see what's going on with the Soviets.

Soon multiple Migs are detected in the southern part of the attack run. Now it’s the RNoAF's F-84s turn to start engaging - before the Migs can close the following 98th B-36 flights.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/11/2013 1:40:24 AM   
acbennett3


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Starting to get worried now. While no more Migs appear over the water north of Kola, multiple Migs are starting to appear up and down the border in front of the western bomber run now over Finalnd. In the below image is "Super Mig". He shot down 3 F-84's in a single flight and the 4th F-84 (upper left) had to RTB because it was Winchester. Then the Mig turned southeast and began threatening a B-36 flight. I had to vector two groups of fighters to attempt to stop him.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/11/2013 1:41:01 AM   
acbennett3


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The northern group gets in range first and takes its best shot and… misses and goes Winchester. What's going on here? In the below image the 2 US F-84's are turning back to base and the 5 RNoAF are coming up to take their turn.





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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/11/2013 1:41:31 AM   
acbennett3


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At this point the tally is:
NATO 15 F-84s/4 B-36s
USSR 26 Mig-15s

Will Super Mig live?
Will the NATO fighters last or run out of ammo/fuel?
Will the Soviets run out of fighters?
How many B-36's will make it over their targets?
Will anyone make it home for another natural (not artificial) sunrise?

Actually pretty exciting - and since I am doing an AAR it makes me play this over multiple nights of play. I spend my time at work wondering what will happen next.


< Message edited by acb3 -- 10/11/2013 1:46:44 AM >


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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/11/2013 7:09:35 AM   
Fishbed

 

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I see AI fighters keep on being launched in the combat piecemeal, one per one, like in any Harpoon iteration. Is that completely hard coded, or are there ways (using the editor?) to make the AI player set up stronger fighter/strike groups?

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RE: Kola Peninsula 1953 - 10/11/2013 7:27:45 AM   
acbennett3


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This is my first shot at the editor/event engine so I can't answer yet - maybe one of the Devs can chime in.
The other improvement would be to 'program' the Migs to breakoff once they identified a contact as a fighter and engage only bombers.
Again, haven't explored the event engine enough to know if possible.

If I was playing the Soviet side I would probably do 2-4 A/C flights and spread the altitude to make them tougher to concentrate against and overwhelm. I would also light my afterburner and ignore the fighters and go for the bombers - which was the Soviet/NK doctrine over Korea. Add those 2 tweaks to the AI and this battle would look very different.

Once the Migs get to the bombers it gets ugly - as evidenced by my mistake up North.

< Message edited by acb3 -- 10/11/2013 7:28:22 AM >


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