From: Bedfordshire UK
Here is the readme for 'Fall Gelb' starting in January 1940, the game doesn't have to run on rails, there are realistic alternatives to be had.
Initially Hitler outlined his requirements for an attack against the Western Allies in ‘Fuehrer Directive No. 6’, dated 9th October 1939 :
The Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces.
Berlin. 9th October, 1939. 8 copies
Directive No. 6 For The Conduct of the War
1. Should it become evident in the near future that England, and, under her influence, France also, are not disposed to bring the war to an end, I have decided, without further loss of time, to go over to the offensive.
2. Any further delay will not only entail the end of Belgian and perhaps of Dutch neutrality, to the advantage of the Allies; it will also increasingly strengthen the military power of the enemy, reduce the confidence of neutral nations in Germany's final victory, and make it more difficult to bring Italy into the war on our side as a full ally.
3. I therefore issue the following orders for the further conduct of military operations:
(a) An offensive will be planned on the northern flank of the Western front, through Luxembourg, Belgium, and Holland. This offensive must be launched at the earliest possible moment and in greatest possible strength.
(b) The purpose of this offensive will be to defeat as much as possible of the French Army and of the forces of the Allies fighting on their side, and at the same time to win as much territory as possible in Holland, Belgium, and Northern France, to serve as a base for the successful prosecution of the air and sea war against England and as a wide protective area for the economically vital Ruhr Basin.
(c) The time of the attack will depend upon the readiness for action of the armoured and motorised units involved. These units are to be made ready with all speed. It will depend also upon the weather conditions obtaining and foreseeable at the time.
4. The Air Force will prevent attacks by the Anglo-French Air Forces on our Army and will give all necessary direct support to its advance. It is also important to prevent the establishment of Anglo-French air bases and the landing of British forces in Belgium and Holland.
5. The Navy will do everything possible, while this offensive is in progress, to afford direct or indirect support to the operations of the Army and the Air Force.
6. Apart from these preparations for the beginning of the offensive in the west according to plan, the Army and Air Force must be ready, at all times, in increasing strength, to meet an Anglo-French invasion of Belgium, immediately and as far forward as possible on Belgian soil, and to occupy the largest possible area of Holland in the direction of the west coast.
7. These preparations will be camouflaged in such a way that they appear merely to be precautionary measures made necessary by the threatening increase in the strength of the French and English forces on the frontiers between France and Luxembourg and Belgium.
8. I request Commanders in Chief to submit to me their detailed plans based on this Directive at the earliest moment and to keep me constantly informed of progress through the High Command of the Armed Forces.
The strategic problem was to attack, avoiding the fortifications of the Maginot Line, and to organise an advance through the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg to the greatest advantage. It was recognised that the attack would predictably have to be into Northern France, but how to achieve a decisive result. Hitler was anxious to start the offensive as soon as possible, not withstanding the winter weather, this is clearly stated in the Directive.
It should be noted that the intent of this directive is not the destruction of France, but merely to win enough territory to provide bases to attack Britain and to ensure protection for the Ruhr industrial area.
10 days after the issue of this directive, General Franz Halder produced the first ‘Deployment Directive’ to turn the Fuehrer’s requirements into an operational plan, however, Hitler was not impressed as it was judged to be too conservative and merely a re-run of the failed 1914 plan, which itself was an adaption of von Schlieffen’s 1906 theoretical wargame exercise.
The first Deployment Directive was dismissed by Hitler as ‘the ideas of a military cadet’ and to concentrate minds, announced that the invasion should start on the 12th November 1939.
Halder delivered the Second Deployment Directive on the 29th October, which shifted the weight of the attack further into the Army Group B Northern front, with even less emphasis on the AGrpA Ardennes axis. However Hitler was still dissatisfied, as the plan did not promise a decisive result and now he began to show interest in the Ardennes region as a decisive attack route.
Against the fears and complaints of unreadiness from his generals, Hitler was still insisting on an early attack. However, the start date of a proposed Western offensive was postponed 28 times, well into 1940, as there was no agreed plan and there were concerns over weather and resources.
However, on the 10th January 1940 Hitler received a weather forecast of two weeks clear weather, which would start in 5 days’ time, this was the opportunity that he had been waiting for and he immediately gave orders that the offensive would start on 12th January 1940.
The only plan available was the second Deployment Directive, which although it lacked finesse, as an unimaginative drive through Belgium, Luxembourg, into Northern France, if launched at this time of year would catch the Allies by surprise and unprepared. The Netherlands had been included in the plan, as Goering insisted on access to aerodromes for a campaign against Britain and also to avoid the Netherlands being used by the Allies, as a base to attack the flank of the German offensive.
This much is history, but on the same day that Hitler gave the order for the Western offensive, two Luftwaffe officers, on a flight from Munster to Cologne, made an unexpected landing at Vucht in Belgian territory, carrying documents that contained information on the planned offensive.
Jodel’s diary entry of the 12th January reflected the enormity of the event – ‘if the enemy is in possession of all the files, situation catastrophic’ – and the offensive was cancelled.
‘Fall Gelb Mod’, commencing in January 1940, is a viable what-if and it would have become historical fact, but for the miss-directed flight of Major Helmuth Reinberger and his incompetent pilot, reserve officer Major Erich Hoenmanns.
< Message edited by Rasputitsa -- 12/14/2016 5:10:23 PM >
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