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Thread: Permanently Operating Factors - A Soviet LAN AAR

  1. #1181
    Strategy Cognoscenti Demi Moderator Myth's Avatar
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    Delex: Not bad. Flanking like that certainly is a nice trick when honestly stalemated and no (real) progress can be made. This war, though, was highly mobile, just confined to a north-south corridor of provinces three wide

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  2. #1182
    Strategy Cognoscenti Demi Moderator Myth's Avatar
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    The Kremlin
    May 26, 1942


    Vasilevskij was again sitting behind his desk, his heavy eyelids tormenting his sandy-feeling eyes. He had not been sleeping well the past few days; his overworked mind did not cease its processing during the night as it normally should do. Instead, he ended up staying awake late into the night thinking, strategizing, hoping and fearing. When he did eventually fall asleep, his dreams were bursting at the seams with images of armies, of conflict and of schemes gone awry. He knew that such a malignant shift in his sleep patterns would only end with the war, or at least this period of intense pressure. Vasilevskij sighed and rubbed his eyes before blearily reviewing the reports of the past two days so that he could give Stalin a brief overview of events that evening when his office hours began. Stalin was an insomniac. Vasilevskij most certainly was not.

    Two issues bickered for Vasilevskij’s attentions. These two fell under the broad categories of distraction, or pocket. The first item he was reviewing, commencing at sunrise on the 24th, fell primarily into the former category, though it did have ramifications for the latter as well. One of the Baltic Fronts was assaulting Konigsberg again, having just recently been chased out of the city by German panzers. The eighteen divisions of the Front, being temporarily commanded by Lieutenant-General Reiter in the momentary absence of the Front’s actual commander, were attacking the nine Germans divisions which were not only holding the city but also pushing toward Suwalki at the same time. The attack on Konigsberg was an indirect method of preserving the existence of the pocket even as another of the Baltic Fronts was attempting to hold Suwalki itself and prevent it from becoming a supply corridor for the Germans. Instead, it was being turned into a corridor of fire.


    The umpteenth battle for Konigsberg.

    The second item fell firmly into the pocket category. Timoshenko, perhaps slightly impatient or perhaps attempting to slow the German advance toward undefended Bielsk, attacked Bialystok directly. In any event, this would have been a steep proposal, but Timoshenko’s 1st Belarussian Front was exhausted. It was in no shape to take on thirty nearly fresh German armored and motorized divisions. They were nearly fresh because, in the words of a captured German report, “they’ve been low on oil for so long, they’ve barely seen any combat.” In any case, Timoshenko’s gambit obviously failed, and within hours of its beginning. Nevertheless, it was a handy method of gauging the difficulty of quashing the pocket; the judgment was in: very difficult.


    Attacking Bialystok, and the general situation around the pocket.

    The third item also fell into the pocket category, but was much more positive than Timoshenko’s foolhardy assault. Fedorenko’s 2nd Belarussian Front was pushing the assault of Luniniec home, despite the increase in German defensive capabilities with the retreat of six more divisions into that locality. The Luniniec pocket was about to be liquidated at the time of the report, and had been destroyed by the next morning, that of the 25th. It was the first unambiguous big victory of the war for the Soviets, and it gladdened Vasilevskij immensely. Of the sixty-three divisions pocketed in the enormous crescent, only forty-eight were left. A quarter had been destroyed, and Vasilevskij’s strategy was seeing colossal armies marching toward and massing around Bialystok. The enemy, however, was still strong.


    The battle of Luniniec in its last hours before the fifteen German divisions were destroyed forever!

    During the morning of the 25th, however, the Germans launched a distraction operation. Vasilevskij could think of no other use for it. Ulex, still possessing considerable forces in the south, was pushing again toward Tarnopol. Zhukov held command over twenty-one divisions there but they were tired and battered from constant fighting. Ulex’s divisions, thirty in all, were very fresh by comparison and were running roughshod over the Soviet defenders. Vasilevskij’s breath caught as he read the report again, he had missed something. His 1st Tank Army was at Zhitomir and moving toward Tarnopol. Within the next few days, it would finally be on the front line! Vasilevskij hoped that Stalin would keep his promise and release Vasilevskij back to operational duties.


    Distraction in the south on the morning of the 25th.

    The 2nd Ukrainian Front, so long neglected by a lack of action, was finally fighting again. Field Marshal Purkaev threw the full weight of his Front toward Stanislawow, the base of Ulex’s push, in an attempt to distract that and slow it down. Vasilevskij shrugged with apathy. Ulex’s thrust was no danger to the course of the fighting around Bialystok by any stretch of the imagination, it was simply too far away even if there was no Soviet resistance between the German vanguards and Bialystok. Nevertheless, he understood Purkaev’s reasons for attacking, beyond the purely military consideration of halting another enemy offensive no matter how strategically irrelevant it was. There was still some glory for the taking in the south, it seemed, and Purkaev was determined to grasp it solidly.


    The battle for Stanislawow.

    Vasilevskij shook his head in an attempt to jar his sluggish mind back into first gear. He was going to go back to his tank army, he just knew he was. He was finally going to the front, and he had to be on top form to attempt to deal with the German thrust toward Tarnopol. At thirty divisions, it was still a significant force that outnumbered both the Soviet Tank Armies even when combined, by a healthy six-division margin. Individually, each Soviet Tank Army consisted of only twelve divisions, of which only four were actually armored. Another two were mechanized infantry divisions, and the final six motorized infantry. Compared to the standard German composition of two armored and one motorized division for each corps, half the corps of the four-corps Tank Army were very lightweight. Vasilevskij knew he would have his work cut out for him. His strategic competence had been proven, but soon he would have to prove his tactical excellence.
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  3. #1183
    GunslingAAR coz1's Avatar
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    Pretty brave of Vasilevskij wanting to go right to the front. I should think that would be saved more for punishment by Stalin. By all rights, he's done a pretty darn good job getting the Russian forces where they are. Can he show it on a small level? We'll see...if he lives.
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  4. #1184
    The Avatar of Time 4th Dimension's Avatar
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    2 ARM + 1 MOT? That's not smart. You don't get combined arms bonus that way.
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  6. #1186
    The Avatar of Time 4th Dimension's Avatar
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    Wasn't for Comb arms bonus, max 50% of forces that are armored (ARM, MECH), needed?
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  7. #1187
    Quote Originally Posted by 4th Dimension View Post
    Wasn't for Comb arms bonus, max 50% of forces that are armored (ARM, MECH), needed?


    No. All you need is to keep them in 33%-66% ratio

  8. #1188
    Marshal of the Empire BritishImperial's Avatar

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    i always go for 2 mot 1 arm. cheaper that way.
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  9. #1189
    Strategy Cognoscenti Demi Moderator Myth's Avatar
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    coz1: Yeah, it is. He wants to actually command a unit in action though. It doesn't seem that dangerous (besides the perils of commanding units on the front) given that he seems to have essentially affirmed his place as the leading Soviet strategist in any case. A poor tactical record wouldn't hurt him too much.

    4th Dimension: As Edzako said, combined arms bonus applies to all ratios frp, 1:2 to 2:1

    BritishImperial: Cheaper, also less effective To be fair though, I didn't even build any armored divisions whatsoever. The four I have are the four I started with

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  10. #1190
    Field Marshal

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    damn it you're doing most of the things as i would have done lol
    but i would start producing tanks in '37 so up to this moment i would have like 20div

  11. #1191
    Marshal of the Empire BritishImperial's Avatar

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    ... and much fewer infantry divisions as a result. though 4 divisions does seem low, but the results of the war will show whose strategy is best.
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  12. #1192
    Strategy Cognoscenti Demi Moderator Myth's Avatar
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    Deus Eversor: Limiting my armor was a specific policy choice for me. I wanted to turn armor into a specialist army unit (two of them), mixed with mechanized and motorized. While my individual Fronts did get mobile units, they comprise in total only four motorized and two mechanized so they don't have much staying power. I also made shock armies, which were just infantry all with artillery attachments, and NKVD district armies, which were infantry with military police.

    BritishImperial: It only shows whose strategy worked best between mine and Discomb's. Having full armored corps for my Fronts would have undoubtedly improved their effectiveness dramatically, but as it was my industry was straining quite literally until the latter half of March 1942 to produce all the units I demanded of it. My strategy seems to have worked, but there's a lot of other factors involved. I'm planning on making a critique post of my strategy and performance at the end of the AAR. If anyone's got anything they specifically want me to look at, mention it so I can start compiling a list

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  13. #1193
    Revolutionary Leader VILenin's Avatar
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    Given Stalin's history with his generals and the reaction one can expect to failure, I don't blame Vassilevskij for not wanting the course of the entire war to rest on his shoulders. I imagine that if things take a turn for the worse for the Red Army the personal consequences for the chief of STAVKA would be... unfortunate.
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  14. #1194
    Field Marshal

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    now we know that discombs forces were effective so much theyve gone too far and got encircled... btu still you could have at least few more... tanks are still good against tanks and locations like plain stanislawow far more than your infantry with additional cannons

    besides
    for what millitary police is used for?

  15. #1195
    Quote Originally Posted by Deus Eversor View Post
    for what millitary police is used for?
    In Myth case only for flavor, but most players attach them to garrisons for increased partisan suppression.

  16. #1196
    Strategy Cognoscenti Demi Moderator Myth's Avatar
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    VILenin: It certainly would be unfortunate. Are you back with us?

    Deus Eversor: As Edzako says, the MPs are for flavor. I played a flavorful game. There are two reasons the Germans got encircled, really. The first was that Discomb drove them straight into a swamp The second is that they had very little oil, the significance of which is something I'll mention in more detail in my strategic critique.

    Edzako: I don't even use MPs otherwise, I barely garrison occupied territory. I tend just to leave a couple corps around (even in the vastness of European Russia!) to react to mass partisan uprisings and that's it

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  17. #1197
    They run out of oil . Good one, maybe they hoped to refill in Moscow.

  18. #1198
    The Avatar of Time 4th Dimension's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Myth View Post
    Edzako: I don't even use MPs otherwise, I barely garrison occupied territory. I tend just to leave a couple corps around (even in the vastness of European Russia!) to react to mass partisan uprisings and that's it
    The pronlem are not uprisings but the effect Partisans have on TC. Garrisoning teritories significantly reduces TC need due to partisans.
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  19. #1199
    Quote Originally Posted by 4th Dimension View Post
    The pronlem are not uprisings but the effect Partisans have on TC. Garrisoning teritories significantly reduces TC need due to partisans.

    Yes but garrisons need supplies too and delivering that to them adds to TC too. Best strategy is to garrison biggest cities with significant IC, because partisan activity reduces IC directly in that province too, f.e. Moscow can loose ~6 IC due to ~30% partisan level, of course how much (20%/35%) of this IC you can use is another question, but with high-IC provinces it's definitely worth it to garrison them.


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  20. #1200
    Field Marshal

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    i did
    by the way i agree with garrisoning ic provinces on the basis that garrisoned privince has no conection to next garrisoned province not higher than 1 province

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