+ Reply to Thread
Page 218 of 329 FirstFirst ... 118 143 168 193 208 216 217 218 219 220 228 243 268 293 318 ... LastLast
Results 4,341 to 4,360 of 6580

Thread: Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two

  1. #4341
    Lt. General Raaritsgozilla's Avatar
    200k clubAchtung PanzerArsenal of DemocracyHearts of Iron 2: ArmageddonCrusader Kings II
    Darkest HourDeus VultEU3 CompleteDivine WindHearts of Iron III
    Heir to the ThroneLead and GoldMagickaSemper FiVictoria 2
    Mount & Blade: WarbandCK2: Holy Knight500k club

    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Sandwiches.
    Posts
    1,307
    Quote Originally Posted by Ciryandor View Post
    Hm, dual 30 cals. Quite a strong support for pushing up and out. I approve of this.
    I demand quad 30 cals!
    "C'est magnifique, mais ce n'est pas la guerre"

    AARS:
    For the fern! Part Deux A New ZealandAAR Newly Updated! 10/5/10
    Land of the Long Red Cloud, A narrative New Zealand AAR Newly Updated 17/9/10
    Rebirth of an empire, A 1936 AAR Great Britain reclaims her spot at the top of the world! (Abandoned)

  2. #4342
    General ColossusCrusher's Avatar
    Darkest HourEU3 CompleteDivine WindHearts of Iron IIIHeir to the Throne
    Iron CrossSemper FiVictoria 2Victoria II: A House Divided500k club
    Europa Universalis IVEUIV: Wealth of NationsEUIV: Conquest of ParadiseEUIV: Res Publica

    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Here, There, Everywhere
    Posts
    2,449
    I demand a quint!
    In Canonized's Timelines: What if Spain Failed to Control the World?, awarded 20 points for pointing out the centrifuge used at one point; identified a cell phone; detected the inspiration for a bounty hunter; inspired a Cube scene and given 30 points for a Star Wars reference.
    Solved (with help from Davout) Canonized's Puzzle Plates Challenge
    Fan of the week August 24, 2008.
    Given 20,000 cookies by Maj. von Mauser.
    Has two ships named after him in DvD-IT's Das war ein Befehl! and a carrier in TRP's The Channel Pact
    Awarded the Pizza of Iron, First Class, in Kurt Steiner's Timelines: What if Stauffenberg had failed to save the world?
    Won a Cookie of GLORY in Alexus' Impo- Difficult Victory: A Japan Mod34 VE/A AAR

  3. #4343
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
    200k clubHoI AnthologyArsenal of DemocracyDarkest HourHearts of Iron III
    Europa Universalis IV

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    The Dalek Empire
    Posts
    9,057
    Best thing I can do is a twin 40mm Bofors on the AA-Crusader.
    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right." - Carl Schurz
    Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two (ongoing) Last updated 12/16/14 Index - Index 2 - Index 3 - Knowledgebase -
    Inkwell Entry Visit the Dictionary!

    Possibly the world's most British German as awarded by El Pip here.

  4. #4344
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
    Arsenal of DemocracyCrusader Kings IIDeus VultDivine WindHearts of Iron III
    Heir to the ThroneSemper FiSword of the Stars

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Londonshire
    Posts
    4,827
    Quote Originally Posted by ColossusCrusher View Post
    I demand a quint!
    I demand a laser cannon of doom! Or at the very least a rail gun.
    The Butterfly Effect: A British AAR - "An an insane project of terrifying detail". The finest slower-than-real-time AAR on the board. Updated 11th September Through adversity, to the sea(plane).

    Inevitable Defeat - Slovakia '44 - The award winning characters Tiso and Tuka attempt to save Slovakia from defeat and destruction. Winner of Two AARland Choice Comedy Awards - Round 4 2011 and Q2 2014. Critical Realisitic Security Advice! News! Hangovers! Just another day in Bratislava for T&T. Updated 14th September.

    Furious Vengeance - A 1944 UK AAR - My actual best work - Winner of the 2009 Iron HeAARt Award

    The other works

  5. #4345
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
    200k clubHoI AnthologyArsenal of DemocracyDarkest HourHearts of Iron III
    Europa Universalis IV

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    The Dalek Empire
    Posts
    9,057
    Quote Originally Posted by El Pip View Post
    I demand a laser cannon of doom! Or at the very least a rail gun.


    Happy now?
    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right." - Carl Schurz
    Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two (ongoing) Last updated 12/16/14 Index - Index 2 - Index 3 - Knowledgebase -
    Inkwell Entry Visit the Dictionary!

    Possibly the world's most British German as awarded by El Pip here.

  6. #4346
    Quote Originally Posted by trekaddict View Post
    Best thing I can do is a twin 40mm Bofors on the AA-Crusader.
    I demand a mobilised dual Bofors/Krupp 88mm gun
    Earth Needs You!
    OPERATION BLUE DANUBE, (It's still a thing)

  7. #4347
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
    200k clubHoI AnthologyArsenal of DemocracyDarkest HourHearts of Iron III
    Europa Universalis IV

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    The Dalek Empire
    Posts
    9,057
    Chapter 231


    The Axis attack going in in the very early hours on 2nd June 1942 was one that had been forced on the acting OB Süd. Fighting over the last few weeks had exhausted the Armoured Forces on both sides, so for once it was an Infantry-only affair, and would not have been distinguishable from the last War had it not been for the large number of aircraft supporting the move.

    Three Divisions was all that the Axis forces could scrounge up at such short notice, the German 357th German Infantry Division and the 33rd and 12th Rifle Divisions of the Red Army. The problem facing OB Süd was that in the west the French were at last beginning to send the six Divisions of the French Army in Italy against the defences of the 20th Mountain Army and the 1st Mountain Rifle Corps, even though they were outnumbered by the Axis mountain troops. Even though this was not his area of command, OB Süd was still worried because he had hoped to gain the 20th Mountain Army as part of his own command since he was sure that eventually he would be forced to fight in the Alps. He also knew that London wasn't too keen on supporting the Italian Resistance Fighters, but apparently that had changed in recent weeks, because now these bastards were ever more adept at blowing up what remained of the rail and road network and at sabotaging Axis logistics and communication at every turrn; and more than once dead or wounded enemies had left British weapons behind.

    The only consolation in this situation was that the Allied Armoured Divisions were as much exhausted as his own, and would need at least several days of rest before they could fight again.

    Positioned between the coast near where the Axis front met the beach and the end of the sector where the attack was to be launched near Verona, were nominally three Allied Divisions, the British 7th Armoured and 1st Cavalry, who formed the screen for the rest of I (BR) Tank Corps, and the Belgian 1st Infantry Division who had relieved the exhausted Dutch who had fought on this side of the front almost since the fall of Rome. In reality however all but one Regiment of the 7th Armoured had been pulled back, leaving 1 Royal Tank Regiment, two companies of The Rifle Brigade (Prince Consort's Own)[1] and the 1st Kenya Tank Regiment on their own to cover a stretch of front that the Division had occupied, never mind that the Kenyans had only arrived in Italy two weeks ago straight out of training and where thus as green as grass. Major General Hawthorne was thus forced to stretch 1st Cavalry Division to the breaking point, even though the unit had only been supposed to act as a screen for the Tanks and wasn't really meant to hold the line in a stand up battle. However they would soon not have much of a choice.

    The enemy plan was to smash through these forces, removing the threat to Venice in the process, and then funnel in more forces through the gap so created, drive west and hopefully threaten the supply lines of the Allied forces in the north and perhaps even those of the French in the west. With only three Divisions doing the main attacking that was a rather ambitious plan going by the standards of the Italian Campaign so far, especially when one had a mere 3:2 superiority in units. Also the Allies were sure to attack and smash the bulge with tanks, Artillery and Aircraft. To ward of the second, the Russo-German Forces in farther north were to launch diversions at a number of places tomorrow, more in an effort to pin the Allies down than anything else.

    In the long term the plan was to launch more of this form of attack, wearing the Allies down and then to drive them back using superior German and Soviet manpower. It was not the sort of plan Acting OB-Süd would have chosen, but the orders to that effect were coming directly from the OKW, so there was little he could do except carry them out. And anyway, anything that held the Allies back from snapping his thin and essentially indefensible line like a twig was not something to be sniffed at. Thus Soviet Artillery began shelling the forward positions of the Belgian Division near Cavarzere for less than two minutes. This attack was then followed by an Infantry charge backed up by a few BA-10 Armoured Cars that had found it's way to the Division when their old unit had been destroyed a few months before. They did not do much beyond attracting attention from the Belgian anti-tank gunners who, albeit still equipped mostly with the 6pdr due to the constant shortage of the bigger guns, but they still managed to take them all out at ranges far beyond those of the PIAT launchers. The Belgian Army in Exile was a small one, consisting only of this single Infantry Division, a Tank brigade and six Squadrons of Fighters, even so they were fighting hard. To make up for a lack of organic Artillery the Belgian Infantry was equipped with a larger number of heavy Company Level machine guns and platoon-level mortars, which made the Belgian Division a more than deadly enemy infantry formation than was usual among the Allied troops who were all more or less equipped in the British manner.

    This attack therefore met with heavy and dogged resistance, especially near a farm that commanded the only road towards Cavazere that was still in a usable condition. Here the 1st Battalion, Regiment of Ardennian Rifles, reconstituted from a few survivors and members of disbanded units made a stand even though they were attacked by an entire Brigade after the commander of the advance force tasked with clearing this road had called for and more reinforcements. The Belgians had fortified the farm in the previous days meant as a forward observer post for the Division, and stationed the Battalion there. Because they were (and are) Light Infantry, the Battalion had nothing in the way of organic Artillery except for several mortars and two 6pdr Anti-Tank guns, but even so the Belgians defended the farm from the walls that enclosed the central space between the buildings. For more than two hours the Soviet Human wave clashed against the white washed walls of the farm only to be broken by the bullets, bayonets, riflebutts and sometimes blank fists of the Riflemen; at one point the Soviets managed to blow open the gates with a satchel charge only to be driven back out when the senior surviving Officer personally led a counter-attack, and helped turn over a cart to barricade the entrance again. When it was clear that the action was going nowhere, the Soviet Officer on the scene decided to request Artillery or an air strike, but none was to be had, most of the aircraft assigned to the attack were needed supporting the drive against the British and the Artillery was partially supporting the second attack. On the Coast, two Battalions of Naval Infantry advanced along the beach and through the immediate coastal area, supported by a Soviet Rifle Brigade and most of the Division's artillery and, for the first time in Italy
    and large-scale use, Katyusha launchers. Even though here the terrain favoured the attacker, the Belgians initially held the line.



    Up north the situation was worse by several orders of magnitude. Firstly Major General Hawthorne and his second in Command, Brigadier Golden were killed in the opening minutes of the attack when the Division CP was rocketed by a squadron of IL-2s, leaving 1st Cavalry leaderless. As a result of this, the Division began to retreat towards the main body of the 7th Armoured Division to the north-west, allowing a gap in the front between Stanghella and Agna; only the leadership skills of the likes of Lethbridge-Stewart and others kept the units themselves together and the Division from turning into a disorganized rabble.

    The news of the defeat the Division had suffered raced up the chain thanks to a few of the survivors of the rocket strike, and so Lt. General Horrocks reluctantly instructed Major General Campbell to part with his second in Command.

    Brigadier Shorthouse thus found himself field promoted to Major General and in command of a unit that existed in name only at that point. To his credit it must be said that he pulled the Division back together again and sent a message to all his Colonels:

    'The Division has failed. It is my duty to make sure it does not fail again.'


    This reminder of the (in their eyes) shameful way in which they had allowed the Division to dissolve in the face of the enemy pulled even those soldiers together that had not retreated in an orderly manner, and after a few hours of sorting out units and supplies the Division was combat ready again. However there still was the gap the retreat had created and through which elements of two German Divisions were now advancing, having crossed the Adige river by 10 AM. Down south the Belgians were still holding, even though the casualties they were taking while doing so would soon force them to withdraw. Lt. General Horrocks was the senior Allied Officer in the sector and he quickly realized that bringing the entirety of his Corps to bear would take far too long, even 7th Armoured Division would take at least a couple of hours to shift onto the right axis, so the pincer attack that was the obvious choice in a situation like this one was out. Instead the units in action with the enemy were to delay the enemy as much as they could so that the 7th and elements of the 1st would get a chance to attack the spearheads directly wherever they were faced. This however was easier said than done. While in the south the Belgians were reinforced by the 10th and 2nd Gurkha Rifle Regiments that Field Marshal Alexander had released from Army Reserve mainly on the grounds that they were close, allowing the Belgians to conserve their manpower, so stopping the enemy cold there would be relatively easy. In the north the only units immediately available where the Peshawar Lancers, the 1st King's Dragoon Guards and about half of the 11th Hussars, the rest of the Division was still totally disorganized or facing in the wrong direction. This force was woefully light on Infantry, in fact all of the Infantry Units of the Division were just then forming up behind them and was rather light on Artillery. The only thing that they had going for them was that their 4.2 inch mortars were mounted in Morris C8s and thus able to keep up, thanks to a less than perfect arrangement that had been achieved by cutting out the roof of the vehicle, removing the seats for the gun crews and welding the baseplate to the floor, with later models being equipped with a crude traversable baseplate.[2]

    Even so the ad-hoc '1st Cavalry Divisional Battlegroup' attacked with gusto on mid-day, almost on the dot at 12:00. The German Division that was the closest had evidently expecting a counterattack because the Battlegroup ran into heavy resistance almost immediately, but certainly not light, fast moving armoured forces. The enemy Infantry might have found itself at an advantage had they only faced the Peshawar Lancers and the 11th Hussars alone, but the few anti-tank weapons that they had deployed were outmatched by the Honeys and so the British managed to push them back. Speed was slow, but that was more due to force conservation tactics by the senior Colonel. Due to this the first British units didn't enter Stanghella until three in the afternoon and still had to fight part of the German 334th Infantry Regiment inside the town. The lack of Infantry showed here, and after loosing six tanks to shaped charges and petrol bombs, the senior Colonel pulled the tanks back and halted the advance. Even though the attack had failed to close the gap or do significant damage to the enemy, it had slowed the German Division on this side of the gap down enough to allow the 2nd Royal Hussars and the remainder of The Rifle Brigade (Prince Consort's Own) to dig in and halt the enemy's right flank. In the centre and on their left the advance petered out when the units failed to fully support each other thanks to a communication breakdown caused by Allied Artillery and aircraft raining lead and fire on their rear areas. The deepest axis penetration into the Allied lines was almost ten miles, and dusk was fast approaching. In the days before reliable night fighting kit was invented, this meant that the battle would soon grind to a halt. However Major General Shorthouse had no intention of leaving it at that. By the time the Battlegroup halted, he had managed to assemble almost all of the remaining units in his new Division and wasted no time in sending them into the attack. He knew that even in a perfect state the Division would most likely be too weak to seal of and hold the breach on it's own, but he could attempt to fool the Germans into thinking it could and so keep them from pulling back or using all of their units against the attacks that were sure to come somewhere else.

    When several of his units made probing attacks it was unclear if the Germans had fallen for it, but he decided to keep them up anyway. What he couldn't know was that the Germans had swallowed it hook, line and sinker. The blocking force in front of them had clearly been identified as belonging to 7th AD, and so they believed that the forces threatening their flanks belonged to that same unit. That they did in reality belong to the Cavalry Division was not something the Officers in the Division thought possible, after all they had smashed the unit to pieces.

    Such was the situation when both sides settled down for the night with the exception of the Artillerists who fought a fierce duel with each other throughout the night. In the morning it was the British who managed to land the first blow when the German advance units began to move and ran headlong into advancing British Armour. After a pitched battle the tanks broke through and the German Division Commander received news that his forward line had been engaged and defeated by elements of 3 RTR and the 1st Kenya Tank Regiment, supported by the 5th City of London Rifle Regiment. (Not that these units were ever identified)


    Crest of the 5th City of London Rifle Regiment, formed out of 5th Battalion, The London Regiment, Territorial Army.


    Instead of driving directly towards the breach, the British then wheeled south to attack the other Axis Division in the flank, relying on 1st Cavalry Division to keep the Germans pinned down. The attack then smashed into the right flank of the second German Infantry Division and broke through after a sharp fight with two Batteries of towed 88s. By this time, roughly 10 AM, the two British Tank Regiments had already lost almost a dozen tanks between them, but they still advanced, ravaging the rear areas that had been left alone by the Artillery and the Air Forces had left alone. Even so they couldn't prevent the two German Divisions from pulling back towards their starting line in relatively good order. The Battle of the Adige River was the first of the so-called 'long Battles' that would characterize the next two years of the war, and it also had destroyed any chance for either side to make much headway that month, so in the short term it was strategic Axis victory.

    Allied strategy changed accordingly. Where Field Marshal Alexander had wanted to force the enemy to divide his forces by pusshing east and west at the same time, now he couldn't do that because the attack had clearly shown that the enemy had the willpower and the resources to make a fight for the lowlands around Venice, and at the same time stiffening resistance in the west made clear that the commander there was able and willing to conduct a mountain campaign that would soon remind everyone of the Alpine front in the last war. The French had managed to push about half the way to the French border but Generaloberst Dietl had stopped them cold and were now fighting tooth and nail for every inch, and at that time it wasn't known to the Allies that a partially healed Rommel had taken over command in spite of his still not fully healed wounds and even though his ego would frequently clash with that of Dietl, his senior field Commander, here the Rommel legend really took off.

    Not that the Governments in London and Algiers were aware of that, no, their attention was held by the consequences of the cooperation between a match and some dynamite on a road just outside Barcelona.

    [Notes: I find that writing extended combat scenes is easier when they are set in Europe. ]




    [1] The Rifle Brigade (Prince Consort's Own) is a Regiment in spite of the name, formed out of the famous 95th Rifles after the Napoleonic Wars.

    [2] The 4.2 inch was introduced earlier.

    Order of Battle, 7th Armoured Division as of June 1942, adapted from the OTL OOB the Division had for Operation Compass


    4th Tank Brigade:

    2nd Royal Hussars Tank Regiment
    6th Royal Tank Regiment
    One Battery, Royal Horse Artillery

    5th Tank Brigade:

    3rd Royal Tank Regiment
    1st Kenya Tank Regiment*
    Two Battery, Royal Horse Artillery

    Support Group

    4th Royal Horse Artillery
    The Rifle Brigade (Prince Consort's Own)
    5th City of London Rifle Regiment*

    Divisional Troops

    3rd Royal Horse Artillery (minus two Batteries seconded to 4th and 5th Brigades)
    106th RHA
    42nd Reconnaissance Battalion
    Division Signals Section
    270th Field Security Section, Royal Military Police

    Royal Engineers

    44th Field Troop
    127th Field Troop*

    Royal Army Medical Corps

    2/3 Mobile Field Ambulance
    3/3 Mobile Field Ambulance

    Royal Logistics Corps

    No. 5, 55, 58, 65, 42 Companies
    1st Supply Issue Section, RLC
    Divisional Field Park, Workshops plus 3 Repair Sections


    * Fictional units. I didn't find out that there actually was a London TA Infantry Regiment between the war until after I drew up this OOB.
    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right." - Carl Schurz
    Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two (ongoing) Last updated 12/16/14 Index - Index 2 - Index 3 - Knowledgebase -
    Inkwell Entry Visit the Dictionary!

    Possibly the world's most British German as awarded by El Pip here.

  8. #4348
    Monarchist Griffin.Gen's Avatar
    Arsenal of DemocracyHearts of Iron 2: ArmageddonCrusader Kings IIDarkest HourDeus Vult
    Europa Universalis 3Divine WindHearts of Iron IIIHeir to the ThroneEuropa Universalis III: In Nomine
    March of the EaglesEU3 Napoleon's AmbitionVictoria: RevolutionsSengokuVictoria 2
    CK2: Holy Knight500k clubEuropa Universalis IV

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Kaiserberg / Királyhegy
    Posts
    1,410
    Ow, so the Soviets have the Katyusha? That could be bad.

    Fan of the week 12/06/10, Thanks trekaddict!

  9. #4349
    Colonel Le Jones's Avatar
    Crusader Kings IIHearts of Iron III CollectionVictoria 2Victoria II: A House DividedEuropa Universalis IV: Pre-order

    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Hampshire, UK
    Posts
    848
    Yay! Great to see the Katyushas in action! Bravo for your portrayal of the Belgians.
    The King's First Minister - a UK AAR

    Character Writer of the Week 15/12/08
    Character Writer of the Week 10/08/09
    Character Writer of the Week 04/10/09

  10. #4350
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
    200k clubHoI AnthologyArsenal of DemocracyDarkest HourHearts of Iron III
    Europa Universalis IV

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    The Dalek Empire
    Posts
    9,057
    Griffin.Gen Well, I have the RAF, the 25pdr and probably the best forward artillery control system in the world.

    Le Jones Thank you, thank you.

    A long while back I used to favour MLRS over good old tube Artillery before I saw the error of my ways, and I still have something of an afinity for the Katyusha.
    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right." - Carl Schurz
    Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two (ongoing) Last updated 12/16/14 Index - Index 2 - Index 3 - Knowledgebase -
    Inkwell Entry Visit the Dictionary!

    Possibly the world's most British German as awarded by El Pip here.

  11. #4351
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
    200k clubHoI AnthologyArsenal of DemocracyDarkest HourHearts of Iron III
    Europa Universalis IV

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    The Dalek Empire
    Posts
    9,057


    "Canadian Arrow in Retro-colour scheme alongside a recently defected F-77 Interceptor"
    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right." - Carl Schurz
    Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two (ongoing) Last updated 12/16/14 Index - Index 2 - Index 3 - Knowledgebase -
    Inkwell Entry Visit the Dictionary!

    Possibly the world's most British German as awarded by El Pip here.

  12. #4352
    Colonel Dr. Gonzo's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Members Bar
    Posts
    853
    God bless those mighty Belgians!

  13. #4353
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
    200k clubHoI AnthologyArsenal of DemocracyDarkest HourHearts of Iron III
    Europa Universalis IV

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    The Dalek Empire
    Posts
    9,057
    Yeah. The Polish and Belgians AIs were the only AIs that fought well in the game, and my writing reflects that.


    EDIT: Forgot the Elk Herders of North Canuckistan.
    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right." - Carl Schurz
    Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two (ongoing) Last updated 12/16/14 Index - Index 2 - Index 3 - Knowledgebase -
    Inkwell Entry Visit the Dictionary!

    Possibly the world's most British German as awarded by El Pip here.

  14. #4354
    Pantomacatalasecesionanis ta

    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Questing for the Black Shine...
    Posts
    18,049
    Blog Entries
    20
    Wonderful battlescene, indeed. Well done, trekkie.

    Quote Originally Posted by trekaddict View Post
    The only thing that they had going for them was that their 4.2 inch mortars were mounted in Morris C8s and thus able to keep up, thanks to a less than perfect arrangement that had been achieved by cutting out the roof of the vehicle, removing the seats for the gun crews and welding the baseplate to the floor, with later models being equipped with a crude traversable baseplate.
    What a clever idea.

    But this is even better:

    Quote Originally Posted by trekaddict View Post
    the consequences of the cooperation between a match and some dynamite on a road just outside Barcelona.
    Ir Cerillita (Lil' Match) has left the building in Barcelona you'll make my day.
    "Pequeño Padawan Kurtizacoal, por qué me has salido tan cabrón?" - me dijo mi Maestro.
    Palo Dixit: posible Anticristo, vacalentacialanonanista, Culé y Salido que provoca manifas por donde pasa.
    Palo Dixit redux: Escatológico bipolar

    AARs en curso o acabados -Ongoing and finished HoI2 AARs-
    WritAAR of the Week:16-03-07/5-04-09/13-09-09/19-09-10/28-10-11 - Fan of the week 25-03-07/29-10-07/06-04-08/29-12-08/13-09-09 - Canonized 02-12-07 - Best Character WritAAR of the Week:03-04-09- Showcased 01-05-2010/10-12-2010 - Mi blog: Polvo de diamante (16) [Actualizado 20/12/2014]

  15. #4355
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
    200k clubHoI AnthologyArsenal of DemocracyDarkest HourHearts of Iron III
    Europa Universalis IV

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    The Dalek Empire
    Posts
    9,057
    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt_Steiner View Post
    Wonderful battlescene, indeed. Well done, trekkie.



    What a clever idea.

    But this is even better:



    Ir Cerillita (Lil' Match) has left the building in Barcelona you'll make my day.

    Thank you!


    Up next will be an intermission on Tactical Bombers, aka Infiltrators.
    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right." - Carl Schurz
    Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two (ongoing) Last updated 12/16/14 Index - Index 2 - Index 3 - Knowledgebase -
    Inkwell Entry Visit the Dictionary!

    Possibly the world's most British German as awarded by El Pip here.

  16. #4356
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
    200k clubHoI AnthologyArsenal of DemocracyDarkest HourHearts of Iron III
    Europa Universalis IV

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    The Dalek Empire
    Posts
    9,057
    Intermission #7


    Before World War 2, there was no concept of an Infiltrator as an independent weapons system, in fact what would eventually become the Infiltrator Class of Bombers started out as the main offensive weapon of Bomber Command for lack of any of the later heavy four-engined bombers.

    Unlike most of the other branches of the British armed forces this at least made sure that Bomber Command had reasonably modern equipment, especially when compared to Fighter Command and the Army. The Backbone of the bomber force at the time was the Vickers Wellington Medium Bomber.

    The Wellington had originated from an Operational Requirement that sprang up in the early 1930s for a twin-engined monoplane medium bomber supposed to be able to carry a bombload of 5000 pounds to a target 2500 miles away.

    Designed at Brooklands in Weybridge, Surrey, by Vickers-Armstrongs' Chief Designer, R.K. Pierson, the Wellington utilized the geodesic structure that Barnes Wallis had developed for the abortive Wellesley Light Bomber. Powered by two Bristol Pegasus X radial engines, the first prototype was designated Type 271 and flew on 17th June 1935. Bomber Command was extatic, even when the bomb load turned out to be lower than specified, and ordered seven pre-series Wellington Mk.Is to be built as trial Aircraft and to possibly equip an OCU. By then the role of the twin-engined medium Strategic Bomber was already on the way out as the Short Stirling entered service in 1936 only to be quickly superseded by the Manchester and ultimately the Halifax and the Lancaster. Still, Bomber Command lacked planes and the developing global situation in America and later in Europe called for a Command that could deploy at least some aircraft almost everywhere at once, and so the Wellington was put into service to serve with the so-called 'Medium' Squadrons as they were known then. By the outbreak of war, 60 % of the RAF's land-attack bombing Squadrons were equipped with the Wellington, the rest was shared between the Manchester, the Halifax and a few lingering Stirlings that would eventually end up with the Army Air Corps and transport parachute troops, the Squadron including a recently stood up unit that was to be known as 'The Dambusters' in later years. In the opening weeks and months of the war the Wellington was never used for the Strategic Role for which it had been designed and instead embarked on what was going to become it's main occupation and that of an entire class of Aircraft during the war. During the initial stages of the Western Front, the Wellington Force was forced to operate behind enemy lines without enjoying the benefit of fighter cover and suffered accordingly. When however RAF France was diverting most of it's squadrons to supporting the Northern Pocket and later the siege of Brussels, the Westland Whirlwind had at last arrived at the front (after much delay and a switch of engines). The partnership between the Wellington and the Whirlwind was to be a fruitful one, even though the Whirlwind was never really able to compete with the German and Soviet Fighters that were used for the defence of enemy airspace in those early years.

    It was during the dark years of 1940 and 1941 when units like No.617 Squadron and other first gained fame as they flew their Wellingtons against sometimes overwhelming odds and suffered the losses to show for it. However these missions proved to be having an influence, because they disrupted the enemy transportation systems and this helped the Army on the ground. It both the finest hour of the Wellington and also it's swansong in RAF service, because about that time the Bristol Buckingham, the designated successor entered service.






    Having started development alongside of what would later become the Beaufighter that was to gain as much fame with Coastal Command as other models would with Bomber and later Strike Command. The Buckingham however was not a success. Even though it had initially won out against the Mosquito in the competition for the Wellington replacement. The Buckingham equipped only four Squadrons before production was stopped, because at that time the mission for the medium bombers had changed and as it turned out the shorter ranged but faster and much more combat capable de Havilland Mosquito. The reason for this switch was that the Buckingham was designed as a Bomber and a Bomber only, whereas the Mosquito was developed as a multi-role aircraft and even the night-fighter variant turned out to be very adept at doing the sort of things that Bomber Command demanded of it's medium squadrons.

    After the fall of France Bomber Command began to send the medium Squadrons doing interdiction sweeps over the occupied low countries and France, and there the slower dedicated bomber versions suffered considerable losses, while the three Squadrons that had experimentally been equipped with retrofitted Night Fighter Mosquitoes took far less losses than was expected thanks to their speed and their endurance. The version then flown was a field retrofitted one, with the Night Fighting equipment removed and the fuel tank in the bomb bay switched for racks that could hold ordinance. After three months the success was such that Air Vice Marshal Harris requested that all production of the Buckingham be cancelled and the proposed bombing version of the Mosquito be built instead. When the Ministry of Defence refused on the grounds that this would divert materials and workforce from other planes, Harris and then-Squadron Leader Gibson pointed out that building the Mosquito would actually require less metal, and due to the wooden construction many of the components could actually be made in furniture and piano shops. While this wasn't actually done in practice, one Piano factory that still operates near the de Havilland Factory Complex outside Hatfield where the Super-VC10 is assembled has the Mosquito in it's emblem.[1]

    The Mosquito flew in literally dozens of variants, and it was this aircraft that coined the term infiltrator.

    When the bomber sweeps resumed in earnest in spring of 1941, all of the Medium Squadrons in the RAF and all Commonweath and Allied Air Forces in Europe were equipped with the Mosquito in one variant or another. To meet the demand, de Havilland sold a production licence to Avro Canada for the symbolic price of one Canadian Dollar and also began to create shadow factories in India and later Africa. While the Canadian produced Mosquitoes equipped the Canadian and some Expat American Squadrons in Europe, they mostly went to the Far East for the RAAF and RNZAF, later joined by the 1st Canadian Army and it's Air Component. This did however free up scarce and valuable production capability in the United Kingdom for use in Europe and increased the overall availability of the Aircraft. For the next several years the Mosquitoes flew with most of the Medium Squadrons, and the exploits of the aircraft are too many in number to list here, but two missions stand out.

    First in December 1941 No.617 Squadron flew one last mission as a pure Mosquito unit with Operation Jericho, and bombed the Gestapo Headquarters in Amiens without little loss of civilian life and at the same time prevented the Germans from smashing several resistance cells.


    Photograph taken from Wing Commander Gibson's Aircraft


    Of the twelve planes taking part only two were lost.

    A second major mission was carried out in 1943 some months after the Infiltrator Squadrons had been split off from Bomber Command and formed into RAF Strike Command[2] with it's Headquarters in Ellesmere Port[3] in Cheshire. It was a deliberately chosen attack and again it was Guy Gibson who who conceived the mission in his duty as Group Captain of the Special Duties Wing of the Royal Air Force. As part of the general day offensive against German industry launched from bases in southern Italy, several Squadrons would raid Nuremberg. That in itself was nothing special, Bomber and Strike Commands had visited the various airfields and military installations around the city before, the important bit was the date. On 30th January 1943, during the parade celebrating the 10th Anniversary of Hitler being made Chancellor, the Air-raid sirens began to sound. Hitler and Stalin were standing on a platform near the Brandenburg gate and had to watch as 96 Mosquitoes bombed, rocketed and strafed the parade on the Nuremberg Party Rally Grounds, twice buzzed past the platform, wiggled the wings and then proceeded to attack the almost finished Congress hall.

    Nazi Germany did not appreciate the gift sent to it by the Royal Air Force, but there was little that could be done. Strike Command was not the only force that flew the aircraft. It also served with Coastal Command, supplementing the torpedo armed Beaufighters on all fronts, Mosquitoes of No. 255 Squadron RAAF were also the first units to operationally deploy the 'Bouncing Annie' glide bomb in operational use against Japanese shipping in the gulf of Tonkin.

    The Mosquito was also very successful as an escort Fighter, but the most important use remained as an Infiltrator. With the constant increase in engine power it became ever faster, and served in various marques throughout the war. Another major variant was the Close Air Support role.

    As the war dragged on, it became increasingly clear that the Spitfire alone would never make a proper CAS aircraft. It was too limited by range, and the fact that most of it's coolant systems were located on the lower wing made it more vulnerable in this role than other aircraft. To facilitate this new role, the Mosquito was adapted by decreasing the bomb bay in order to allow the armour to be fitted to better protect the crew from ground fire and to allow an increase in fuel capacity, the nose was redesigned to eight 20mm cannons, deleting the .303 machine guns; experiments with fitting a full-size 6pdr and later even a 32pdr[4] gun were scrapped after it turned out that the guns were very susceptible to jamming and that especially with the 32pdr the amount of ammunition to be carried and the restrictions on the number of runs an aircraft could do during one sortie simply did not warrant the additional destructive power. Instead it was decided to focus on the development of Rocket projectiles, and by mid 1943 the Mosquitoes fired the PR.43/2.36 Rocket projectile that had been developed from the one fired by the PIAT, with increased speed and a different shaped charge warhead to increase penetration.

    These aircraft would prove to be decisive in and around the battles that would be fought in Eastern Europe in 1945 and would claim many German and Soviet Tanks, and by the time the time it was being replaced, most of the British Mosquito Squadrons that served in Europe were equipped with this variant.


    Canadian-made Mosquito Mk.XXb


    Development for a replacement of the Mosquito began in 1942, tentatively dubbed the Hornet, taking advantage of all the advances in aerodynamics and other aviation technologies since the Mosquito had been designed. Again powered by two Rolls-Royce Merlin Engines, the aircraft used laminar flow wings similar to that the Hawker Tempest would use, but an arrangement where the control surfaces would use the same principles.

    It soon became clear that the new aircraft would never have the same internal space for bombs as even the latest mossie variants, and so it was developed as a fighter and the Mosquito soldiered on for the remainder 1945. De Havilland meanwhile began to work on what would become the Vampire, which was submitted to the Ministry of Defence only hours after they issued a specification for a Meteor replacement in 1945.

    After being reworked to suit E.16/45, the Vampire was submitted again, reworked as the super-Vampire, with a widened fuselage to accommodate a second crewmember and a more powerful version of the RR Nene engine. While it could carry less of a bombload than the Mosquito (lacking an internal bomb bay) CAS and Infiltration doctrine of the day was 'crack and burn' anyway, meaning that first bomb-armed aircraft would 'crack open' a target while then Napalm armed ones would rain fire on whatever remained.[5]



    It entered service in 1946, but wouldn't serve in this roll for very long. By 1948 already a replacement programme was underway which is hardly surprising given how fast aviation technology advanced in those years.

    De Havilland was not ready to submit a proposal even though a swept-wing variant of the Vampire was being worked on which would regrettably never be built. In a last attempt to get a foot back into the market, it submitted a hasty proposal which was however dropped early on in favour of the only other submitted aircraft: The English Electric Canberra. First flying in October 1948, the plane was developed with all the lessons of the war in mind and in accordance with the direction into which it was thought the class of Infiltrator Aircraft would develop.

    Taking a leaf from the first Mosquito proposal the aircraft relied on speed for it's defence, being unarmed beyond the ordinance it carried, and it did have the speed. What it also had in spite of it's designated role was the ability to fly high, though that ability would initially go to waste. First flying in 1949 and entering service in September 1950, almost a year after it's first flight. This was due to several modifications that had needed to be made to the first prototype. For one wing-tip fuel tanks were added, and the aircraft adapted to the training and reconnaissance variants. The Bomber variant initially was also fitted with a glazed nose cockpit for the bomb aimer in lieu of the sophisticated aiming RDF set (a variant of the H2S System from the war) that was not yet ready for production. Thus known as the Canberry Mk.IIb/Mk.IIr/Mk.IIt the aircraft entered mass production in plants in the United Kingdom, India, Australia and Canada, later joined by several plants in Kenya. When the RDF system did arrive in 1951, production was immediately switched over and the existing 'planes retrofitted to the new Mk.III standard, with variants of the set also equipping the V-Bomber Force up until the late 1970s.[6]

    When production of the Canberra ceased in 1959, 2104 were built for users in nine different countries, if which three still have variants in service. The RAF and RAAF are flying the Mk.IXr reconnaissance variant with three Squadrons between them and the Peruvian Air Force still has six Mk.VIIIb on it's lists. The reconnaissance variant of the Mk.IX makes it the longest-serving military aircraft in the world, and only the American U-2 comes close in service ceiling and quality of pictures taken. It is expected that the Canberra will serve until 2015 when the replacement de Havilland Auckland next generation reconnaissance aircraft with similar performance statistics enters service.[7]


    Royal Air Force Canberra Mk.VIIb in 1971



    RAF Mk.IXr/7 of No.39 (1PRU) in 2007



    The Canberra served well, but was by the mid 1960s seen as increasingly vulnerable low down to light anti-aircraft fire and anti-aircraft missiles.

    Again English Elesctric came to the rescue. What was unveiled in 1967 was not a particularly revolutionary aircraft as far as the basic design was concerned, but it was described as 'an extraordinary thing of beauty' by former Prime Minister Harold Macmillan. Strangely painted in anti-flash white in lieu of acceptance by the RAF, the Mosquito II was initially known by the name of the Operational Requirement that had spawned it: 'Tactical Strike Reconnaissance 2'.[8]


    The first TSR2 prototype at Duxford Aviation Museum. Note the Tornado Mk.II on the left and the Comet 3 in the background.


    However fincancial woes had long since troubled the company. At first it had not received many large-scale contracts since the Canberra and had then financially overburdened itself with the development of the admittedly awesome Lightning Interceptor, which had led to the company being bought out by Supermarine in 1962, which was nothing special in those days and English Electric continued to operate normally. However the TSR2 project ran into cost overruns as bad as those on the Lightning, and by 1967 Supermarine stepped in and was about to withdraw from the competition which would have left the RAF without a second generation Infiltrator.

    That many in the establishment and most importantly Lord Mountbatten favoured the Blackburn Buccaneer over TSR2 anyway was not helping matters. Opponents of TSR2 argued that since the Buccaneer was already in service with the Fleet Air Arm since 1959 and had proven itself to be a versatile and capable aircraft, why shouldn't the RAF use the same, never mind that it would also ensure commonality between the services in terms of spare parts and doctrine. So by 1966 the fate of TSR2 still hang in the air and an increasingly desperate company tried to find the money to keep the project alive, and shortly after Christmas 1967 several Gentlmen from Woolston knocked at the doors of English Electric's London Corporate headquarters and said that Supermarine was unwilling to keep the project afloat any longer since at the time Supermarine itself was in trouble, and for similar reasons, the Swift alone proved to be too little to really pay for it all. This was later remedied by various export deals for the Swift and the Lightning, but at the time there was a genuine fear that Supermarine might go under if costs were not reduced, and TSR2 was the most obvious candidate, even more so when the Buccaneer replaced the Canberra in the Close Air Support role earlier that same year.

    English Electric was unwilling to give up on the project and was desperately looking for a way to keep the aircraft alive.

    As it turned out de Havilland was at the time trying to reestablish itself on the market with which the company had had so much success during the war and in a secret backroom deal TSR2 was transferred to them. The resulting scandal would have almost killed the project on its own with allegations of bribery and various insider deals, but in the end nothing came of these as the few arrests that were made completely drowned in the much larger BOAC scandal that would rag on for five more years and eventually lead to the merger with BEA anyway.

    The political side of the TSR2 affair would eventually resolve itself when Lord Mountbatten narrowly escaped an assassination attempt by the German Red Army Faction in 1970 and retired from public life afterwards. As it turned out the RAF itself preferred the supersonic TSR2 over the subsonic Buccaneer for the infiltrator role, and in a typical tactic of budget preservation and one upmanship with the Ministry of Defence and the Admiralty it was decided to buy TSR2 in the Infiltrator/Tactical Recce role, the service using the fact that an RAF Officer was CIGS for the first time during this period, where it entered service as the Mosquito II in 1971.

    It may seem strange to think of why the RAF was allowed to purchase two different and highly expensive aircraft for a number of roles that each of them could have carried out on it's own, but it must be remembered that at the time all the military services and branches were recovering from the so-called Bomber Age, where it had been thought that Nuclear Armed bombers were the way forward and would be the only really decisive weapon in a future war, leaving everyone outside Fighter and Bomber Commands scrambling for the remaining crumbs of a drastically reduced budget. When this ended in the late 1960s and early 70sand the budget was increased together with the growing economy, everyone bought whatever systems they could, for the politicians were sure to slash the budget again as soon as there was a hiccup in The City, something evidenced by the Vanguard Attack Submarine and Chieftain Tank programmes for the Royal Navy and the British Army.

    TSR2 entered service in 1971 with a resurrected No.619 Squadron and has since been developed into eight Marques, sold to five non-British Air Forces and can still be found in service all over the world.


    British Mosquito II during filming for Series 4 the BBC Show 'The Last War' in 2009, portraying itself during a conventional World War Three.[9]




    “From the Wellington to the Mosquito II – The Infiltrator in the Royal Air Force” - Jane's Information Group, 2010


    [1] As stated a few times, Vickers eventually gave up on Aircraft and sold it's aviation Division, with the bomber/passenger/transport production going to de Havilland and Fighter Production to Supermarine.

    [2] They will never get their grubby hands on Fighter Command!

    [3] Chosen because it's the twin city of my hometown.

    [4] True!

    [5] Trust me, when we get to the to the end of the war you'll understand why.

    [6] This of course deprives us of the excellent optical system that the Aussies used to such good effect in Vietnam, but you can't have everything. Besides, the variants fitted and retrofitted into the aircraft over the years got more and more accurate anyway.

    [7] The RAF is keeping two Squadrons of nine apiece in service, using several more as an addition for a still formidable stockpile of spare parts. ITTL the RAF can't rely on the Cavalry riding from the west over the ocean and since it's a global force at least as much as the OTL USAF, it's a matter of policy to have stockpiles of spare parts for aircraft that are out of production. To imagine the Auckland, think of a cross between the U-2 and an oversized, manned predator drone.

    [8] I absolutely adore this plane. Its IMO the best looking post-war aircraft this side of the Vulcan.

    [9] Given how incredibly detailed, indepth and awesome TLW is you'd need a multi-series TV show to really do it justice.
    Last edited by trekaddict; 05-08-2011 at 21:49.
    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right." - Carl Schurz
    Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two (ongoing) Last updated 12/16/14 Index - Index 2 - Index 3 - Knowledgebase -
    Inkwell Entry Visit the Dictionary!

    Possibly the world's most British German as awarded by El Pip here.

  17. #4357
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
    200k clubHoI AnthologyArsenal of DemocracyDarkest HourHearts of Iron III
    Europa Universalis IV

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    The Dalek Empire
    Posts
    9,057
    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right." - Carl Schurz
    Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two (ongoing) Last updated 12/16/14 Index - Index 2 - Index 3 - Knowledgebase -
    Inkwell Entry Visit the Dictionary!

    Possibly the world's most British German as awarded by El Pip here.

  18. #4358
    Pantomacatalasecesionanis ta

    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Questing for the Black Shine...
    Posts
    18,049
    Blog Entries
    20
    The Mosquito. The awesomest insect of all times
    Last edited by Kurt_Steiner; 19-05-2010 at 14:33.
    "Pequeño Padawan Kurtizacoal, por qué me has salido tan cabrón?" - me dijo mi Maestro.
    Palo Dixit: posible Anticristo, vacalentacialanonanista, Culé y Salido que provoca manifas por donde pasa.
    Palo Dixit redux: Escatológico bipolar

    AARs en curso o acabados -Ongoing and finished HoI2 AARs-
    WritAAR of the Week:16-03-07/5-04-09/13-09-09/19-09-10/28-10-11 - Fan of the week 25-03-07/29-10-07/06-04-08/29-12-08/13-09-09 - Canonized 02-12-07 - Best Character WritAAR of the Week:03-04-09- Showcased 01-05-2010/10-12-2010 - Mi blog: Polvo de diamante (16) [Actualizado 20/12/2014]

  19. #4359
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
    Arsenal of DemocracyCrusader Kings IIDeus VultDivine WindHearts of Iron III
    Heir to the ThroneSemper FiSword of the Stars

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Londonshire
    Posts
    4,827
    I'm sensing alot of Mosquito love in this one, though I could be wrong.

    While I'm very pleased to see TSR2 make it this time around it's a shame that one of my favourite acronyms will not exists; Tornado MRCA (Make a Replacement for Canberra Again). Still it's a price worth paying.
    The Butterfly Effect: A British AAR - "An an insane project of terrifying detail". The finest slower-than-real-time AAR on the board. Updated 11th September Through adversity, to the sea(plane).

    Inevitable Defeat - Slovakia '44 - The award winning characters Tiso and Tuka attempt to save Slovakia from defeat and destruction. Winner of Two AARland Choice Comedy Awards - Round 4 2011 and Q2 2014. Critical Realisitic Security Advice! News! Hangovers! Just another day in Bratislava for T&T. Updated 14th September.

    Furious Vengeance - A 1944 UK AAR - My actual best work - Winner of the 2009 Iron HeAARt Award

    The other works

  20. #4360
    General ColossusCrusher's Avatar
    Darkest HourEU3 CompleteDivine WindHearts of Iron IIIHeir to the Throne
    Iron CrossSemper FiVictoria 2Victoria II: A House Divided500k club
    Europa Universalis IVEUIV: Wealth of NationsEUIV: Conquest of ParadiseEUIV: Res Publica

    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Here, There, Everywhere
    Posts
    2,449
    Well that was almost excessive techporn.
    If you ever run out of techporn ideas, I recommend David Weber's Safehold series. Even though it's set in a pre-industrial society, he has his moments.
    In Canonized's Timelines: What if Spain Failed to Control the World?, awarded 20 points for pointing out the centrifuge used at one point; identified a cell phone; detected the inspiration for a bounty hunter; inspired a Cube scene and given 30 points for a Star Wars reference.
    Solved (with help from Davout) Canonized's Puzzle Plates Challenge
    Fan of the week August 24, 2008.
    Given 20,000 cookies by Maj. von Mauser.
    Has two ships named after him in DvD-IT's Das war ein Befehl! and a carrier in TRP's The Channel Pact
    Awarded the Pizza of Iron, First Class, in Kurt Steiner's Timelines: What if Stauffenberg had failed to save the world?
    Won a Cookie of GLORY in Alexus' Impo- Difficult Victory: A Japan Mod34 VE/A AAR

+ Reply to Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts