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

  1. #4861
    Monarchist Griffin.Gen's Avatar
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    More troubles in the Balkan!

    Albania, heh? Are we going to see the restoration of King Zog I? XD

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  2. #4862
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Happy 2011 everyone!


    Kurt_Steiner As you know I am not a fan of him and his friends and would, given a choice, rather stand at the Dutch border and cheer on the Commonwealth forces.


    Griffin.Gen Troubles, yes. Zogian restoration? No. Definitely not.
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  3. #4863
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    No Zog? I must confess I'm disappointed, but not surprised. I am however surprised at the Poles getting a Southampton class light cruiser, damned if I can see what advantage there is to Britain in handing one over when one of the endless C or D classes would do as good a job. I bet the Admiralty is annoyed to be weakening the Far East Fleet for no good reason.

    Interesting the Axis is already splintering, I can see they're trapped in a vice and anti-communism would be a handy reason to tilt towards Britain, but that's still a risky call. There are a lot of Soviet troops in the world, surely at some point Stalin must start taking the war seriously? A massed defection of Hungary, Romania, et al would be the perfect trigger.
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  4. #4864
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by El Pip View Post
    No Zog? I must confess I'm disappointed, but not surprised. I am however surprised at the Poles getting a Southampton class light cruiser, damned if I can see what advantage there is to Britain in handing one over when one of the endless C or D classes would do as good a job. I bet the Admiralty is annoyed to be weakening the Far East Fleet for no good reason.
    Well, atm I can't be bothered to look it up, but IIRC Zog was killed during the initial Italian invasion ITTL.

    The Southampton for Poland is plain old politics. Partially an attempt to spread more modern Equipment by the British and part of a guilt trip that No.10 was on thanks to clever politiking by the Polish Government in Exile when they asked for a replacement for the original Conrad. With British, Indian, Canadian and Australian shipyards hard at work, only one Naval theatre worthy of note and (when compared to OTL at least) relatively light losses in that type of ship Cruisers aren't as scarce, so one can be spared for Poland.


    Quote Originally Posted by El Pip View Post
    Interesting the Axis is already splintering, I can see they're trapped in a vice and anti-communism would be a handy reason to tilt towards Britain, but that's still a risky call. There are a lot of Soviet troops in the world, surely at some point Stalin must start taking the war seriously? A massed defection of Hungary, Romania, et al would be the perfect trigger.
    The Axis is splintering earlier because the Allies moved faster and neither of them has Armies deep in Russia at the Mercy of Germans and Soviets alike.

    Stalin takes the war very serious, but one must remember that he is also embroiled in a war against China/Japan, and that front takes up a LOT of the Red Army. Be that as it may though, once the minors jump ship we can indeed expect a strong reaction from Berlin and Moscow.
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  5. #4865
    Sergeant

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    Quote Originally Posted by gaiasabre11 View Post
    Whoa! 5000 posts for you, trek.

    Anyways I'm thinking of how do I prove that Alsace has better gunnery than your Lion. Perhaps because Alsace fires Shells of Supreme (French) Awesomeness?
    well the inclusion of champaigne into the propellant mix would give it that extra "pop" and go far toward the SFA.

  6. #4866
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Chapter 272


    What woke the people in the wing of the Royal Palace in Bucharest was not the turmoil that those in the know had themselves instigated but rather the banging on the door that connected it to the rest of the Palace. The Aide de Camp of King Michael of Romania banged on the door of the expansive room where he was practising the speech he was due to hold on the radio tomorrow and the King himself opened the door.


    “Your Majesty, we have a problem.”

    The ADC had been in representing the King at the General Staff as the Royalist Militia and Loyalist Army units that had surrounded the capital and begin seizing strategic points, and his presence here instead of the CEC Palace that the Army had long since taken over as a Staff Headquarters.

    “What sort of problem, Colonel?” the young King said to an Officer almost twice his own age.

    “Sir, the Marshal has evaded capture.”

    That was indeed a massive problem and the Colonel was surprised to hear his King use words that normally didn't enter into the vocabulary of the nobility.

    “Has there been any sign of where he is going?”


    “None, Your Majesty even though General Dumitrescu believes that it is likely he either entered the German Embassy or seeks to make contacts with the Iron Guard militias close to him.”

    That was indeed the most likely option. However much of a problem the failure to capture Antonescu at his residence might present later on, for the moment even more important things waited to be done, and in the week since the secret meeting in Hungary a week had elapsed, as it was nowhere near enough to put the finishing the planning, but they were running out of time. The Allies and the Axis were poised to enter into a cataclysmic battle for Vienna and the new German OB Süd was already demanding the release of the balkan Armies.

    “What about the rest of the plan, Colonel?”

    “We have seized the telephone exchange, the Post Office and Police Headquarters without trouble, your Majesty. The Iron Guard Headquarters are still resisting, but the commander of Băneasa Airport has arrested the Germans stationed there and sworn allegiance to you.”

    That meant that one of the twelve German and Soviet Air bases in Romania was taken out without a shot being fired, and that left elven bases full with luckily mostly fighters to be dealt with, not to speak from the remaining Axis military presence in the country.


    “Well, we have to be off to the Radio station soon anyway. How is that going, Colonel?”

    “We took it from Antonescu militias without too much damage to prevent your broadcast, your Majesty. Mostly broken glass and furniture, that sort of thing.”

    In that moment the Telephone on the King's desk rang.


    Meanwhile at the German Embassy the Ambassador was frantically trying to make contact with Berlin. The Romanian Marshal had indeed sought refuge there and most of the Embassy personnel were now watching as outside Romanian Cavalry formed a perimeter and more Infantry disembarked from lorries. Unlike American or British Embassies the German diplomatic compounds in the Axis countries and even overseas were not heavily guarded, the only ones armed and trained in the use of weapons where fifteen men of SS Führerbegleitkommnado that had been sent ahead to arrange for a state visit of Hitler to Romania that had been scheduled for three weeks later. They were heavily armed for Light Infantry, and in the fight to come their lack of anti-tank weapons would be of little consequence.


    Facing them was the Romanian Royal Guards Regiment who had fought with the 12. Infanterie-Division in France and for a time in Italy. The Embassy was an old Victorian era building that has served as the Prussian and later German Embassy in the 19th century, with an intermission when Germany had been at war with Romania before, and it was surrounded by a strong brick wall and had a wrought-iron gate.

    No one ever gave the German Embassy a chance to surrender and it stood no chance when two pounds of dynamite blew it off it's hinges.


    Before the dust settled the Romanian Royal Guards came rushing through it, in an action mirrored at the same time at the Soviet Embassy across town. The SS men began to fire their single machine gun at the entrance and felled several of the Romanian troops, but it was a foregone conclusion as the infantry began to leapfrog across the open space in front of the main building, and soon the machine gun was taken out by hand grenades that destroyed the entrance office. Up on top of the Embassy, in the Ambassador's office Marshal Antonescu and the German Ambassador watched as the men in the uniforms of the Guard poured into the building, leaving behind almost a dozen dead bodies.

    “Well, it seems that the rumours were true after all.” Antonescu sad sardonically and the Ambassador replied: “Berlin will not be pleased.”

    “I don't give a fart about what Berlin thinks, Ambassador!” the Marshal replied, raising his voice considerably. “Traitors have taken over my country and they will stab our alliance in the back!” Antonescu stepped over to the window and said: “I underestimated the King...”

    At that moment gunfire rang out on the top floor and the door of the Office was opened when two gunshots shattered the lock on the door. A Squad of soldiers, led by an insanely young Lieutenant of the Guards who was bleeding from where a bullet had grazed his arm and a cut across his cheek.

    The soldiers quickly separated the Ambassador and the Marshal. The Ambassador was sent down with assurances that he and his staff would be handed over to the Swiss who still maintained an Embassy here. Marshal Antonescu on the hand knew that his fate was all but sealed now, and inwardly he wept for the destruction that this would bring to his beloved nation.

    “Marshal Antonescu, on the orders of His Majesty the King I am placing you under close arrest. If you resist we will take you by force. If you don't, the King has decided to be lenient.”

    Grasping the hope for his life with all the force he had left after seeing his work crumble around him, Antonescu simply unholstered his pistol and handed it to the Lieutenant grip first.

    “I will not resist.” 'Not yet anyway.'


    “We must go. It seems some of your German friends have set fire to the building.”


    All over Romania pre-positioned Army units whose loyalty could be counted upon disarmed German and Soviet forces such as they were, in most cases without resistance, on two of the many airbases around Ploesti the coup came so quickly that the Romanians had managed to seize two Squadrons worth of the latest Fw-190 and La-5. Most of the anti-aircraft batteries the Axis had positioned around the vital oil fields and refineries surrendered without firing a shot, considering that they were horribly outnumbered and cut off from any help they had little choice.

    Only the mixed German-Soviet force that had defended the railheads to the south that connected Ploesti with the capital resisted, being the most heavily armed. Even so, they lacked armour, but a great many of the anti-aircraft guns were of the 88mm type and thus able to fire at ground targets. The Romanian High Command knew that spare parts for their German-made tanks would be impossible to obtain from now on and instead of sending the 1st Armoured Division which was stationed nearby the group was merely surrounded by Infantry. Both sides knew that the Romanians would have to clear the railway line sooner rather than later and when the attack came the carnage was immense, but by the next morning the German Commander surrendered.



    Overall the Coup was a mixed bag. By mid-afternoon the King held his speech on the radio as planned, but mere hours later the Iron Guard, alerted by Antonescu via the wireless transmitter inside the German Embassy rose in the countryside, most importantly Banat[1] and on the shores of the black Sea. The Iron Guard had it's Headquarters and informal 'core territories' in Bucharest, but the building was on fire just like the former German Embassy, and the Martial Law that had been proclaimed throughout Romania was ruthlessly enforced by the Guards Regiment and the Loyalist City police, so the uprising was bloody and violent but un-coordinated.

    What helped to aggravate the situation was that essentially Romania was leaderless for most of the day after the storming of the Embassy. What kept the country from falling into civil war or to the few weak probes by the Axis forces at the borders was the loyalty of the Armed Forces to the King. While there were a few isolated incidents when pro-Axis Officers led their men against the coup, but these were few and far between. On the whole especially the chain of Command of the Army and the Air Force followed the orders coming out of Bucharest. Still, the civilian administration had disappeared and so the offices and administrative entities would do nothing for almost three days.

    The Iron Guard on the other hand roamed the countryside and had no clear objective and no way to hide from the mounted Cavalry Patrols or aircraft.

    It would take almost four days to hunt the last of them down as an increasing amount of resources had to be used for securing especially the northern borders of the Kingdom.

    The Allied reaction to all this was muted at first....





    +-+-+-+-+-+-

    Comments, questions, rotten tomatoes?

    Far from my best, but I am having trouble finding reliable information on internal politics that isnt in Hungarian, Romanian or Bulgarian.




    [1] TTL Transylvania was not handed to Hungary. The Germans decided against Hungary in order to keep the only non-Soviet source of oil in Europe close to the Axis. Hitler feared that the Romanians might become unruly if they were forced to give up these territories.
    Last edited by trekaddict; 05-01-2011 at 14:50.
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  7. #4867
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
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    Ahh the irony of Hitler worrying about Romania becoming 'unruly'. Perhaps if he had stripped them of Transylvania he would have been more paranoid about Romanian loyalty and might of seen this coming!
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  8. #4868
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    Let's see who gets fire to Ploesti: Germans, Soviets, Allies...
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  9. #4869
    not a beta for HoI3 Moderator Derek Pullem's Avatar
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    Must be very tempting for the Allies to eliminate Ploesti by air - at least they can deny it to the Germans then and the window of opportunity before the Romanians are organised is small.

    But assuming that piece of realpolitik fails to occur then I'd be worried that the Russians would be reacting first. They have the best supply lines and probably the largest uncommitted reserves
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  10. #4870
    Monarchist Griffin.Gen's Avatar
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    Wait wait, how would the Iron Guard, a bunch of Romanian nationalists, be able to start an uprising in Transylvania when most of it ( AKA the parts that were given to Hungary IOTL) have a majority of Hungarians and a significant minority of them in the rest of the region? I can understand if it was in Banat but it's probably unlikely that it would happen in Transylvania.

    Other than that, good work. I wonder who will succeed the marshall now...

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  11. #4871
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    El Pip The Irony is sweet indeed, but will be utterly lost on everyone TTL.

    Kurt_Steiner All sides have a good chance. The Germans and the Soviets are close but would have to go through a motivated Romanian Army, the Allies are farther away but wont encounter any organized resistance.

    Derek Pullem I'll detail the Allied reaction in the next post, but suffice it to say that this option is on the table. The Soviets have large reserves, but the problem is, a lot of them are either horribly out of position or are fighting the human wave in China.

    Griffin.Gen Gah. That's what you get for relying on shady Internet sites for information. Will be edited.

    For the moment the King holds the reigns, but again, I must put all additional info on hold. Suffice it to say the Allies will insist on certain liberalizations as soon as it can be done without de-stabilizing Romania even further, same goes for the other minors.
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  12. #4872
    Sergeant

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    Quote Originally Posted by trekaddict View Post
    Hehee. Yeah, that one is funny. The British Army will never allow this to happen though.
    as much as i love the brits and consider their army one of the finest in the world they are after all only human. i've a lovely short vid of some british spec ops types doing a landing from a boat along the thames. boat roars up to the beach and the guys leap off all heroic as hell and charge inland. a few metres in from the shoreline there is a patch of different coloured earth. turned out to be about the consistency of porridge and significantly deeper than a man's height with his arms extended above his head. first couple guys just vanished into the goo and they had a jolly time getting them back out before anyone managed to drown in it.

    just goes to show that no matter how good you are (or think you are) that god has a low sense of humour.

  13. #4873
    OK, this is my first post on the forum and I want it to be written on my favourite AAR ever. I just love what you're doing to history, trekaddict. Pity my countrymen (Czechs) choose the wrong side. At least I can hope for some partisan activity in there. I am curious, why the Czechs are not a part of desertion from Axis like Romania, Hungary and Bulgaria. They were forced to take part in that pact and are only a luke-warm member of it, IIRC. You know, my close friend's grand - uncle (her grandad's bro) being Jan Kubis, it's painful for me to see Czechs like this. All in all, keep up the good (oh, superb) work

  14. #4874
    Trekaddict

    Just back from the hols and catching up. [Dreading trying to catch up with the AH site and my watched threads there after 3 weeks away. ]

    Things are coming to the boil nicely. Looks to be mayhem at least along the borders of the Balkans region. As other have said the Axis powers are out of position and will have to fight through the locals, which with the terrain would be a formidable task, especially if the allies can send some aid support until ground forces arrive. Not sure how useful Hungarian forces would be in supporting Rumanian given the historical distrust between the two nations and also that Hungary may still want to keep reserves back to guard against the reaction of a certain ex-Austrian. However the allies, especially since their invading the southern Balkans in force anyway, can secure a lot of territory, some valuable resources and gain a large number of potential boots on ground.

    Given he's so deeply committed in China I wonder if Stalin might start thinking that the alliance with Germany is starting to outlive it's usefulness and the prospects of a separate peace? The problem here might be Poland as Stalin will not want to see that as independent [and basically anti-communist], even if trimmed of it's non-Polish eastern territories. That would however seriously screw Japan as it would be fighting Russia, the British empire and the American communists [can never remember what that damned state is called and have to stop myself calling it the US]. It might however fit in with the map of Asia as seen in you're 1982 AH story.

    Steve

  15. #4875
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Glad to have you back!

    The Balkan Countries chose the best (from the Allied perspective) time to change sides. The Allies will soon have near two dozen Divisions on the ground, and that alone should be enough to help hold the front. Hungary and Romania are Allies of convenience. The Romanians have less bad blood against Hungary (no territorial loss) and the Hungarians know they are too weak to go it alone.

    Stalin would very much like to disavow himself from the Alliance, but he can't really. For one the Germans and the Soviets need each other, the Germans keep Stalin's European Flank in check and allow him to keep enough troops in the East, while the Germans obviously need the Soviets for resources.

    The Allies for one wouldn't yet agree to a separate peace, even with Japan in the war (but on the defensive against the Allies), as a pre-war borders Poland is the minimum they will accept for the moment, it all depends on the massive battles that will obviously be fought once the front clears the Alps. Kursk in a reverse direction Fulda Gap anyone?
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  16. #4876
    Any possibility of Romanian or Hungarian armies join your noble cause? At least against the Russians, IIRC, they're quite anti - comunnist .

  17. #4877
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Well, if they can stand until the Allies arrive there is a good chance that they will be absorbed into the Allied OOB, especially the Armourd formations will be appreciated once re-equipped by British standards.
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  18. #4878
    And what are the Czechs doing now? Any skirmishes with Allies? Or just sitting there?

  19. #4879
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    They have been absorbed into Nazi Germany in all but name. Officially they are still independent, but the Army has been slashed out of existence, and the Germans basically directly run the country through various local collaborators. They still have their own flag and a colour on the map, but that's about it.
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  20. #4880
    Oh,damn......at least I can be a member of the resistence by supporting and reading this AAR. Long live the king! Long live trekaddict !

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