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Thread: Rank and File: A clerk's war Germany 1936 (Semper Fi)

  1. #2761
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    A Clerk’s War


    Monday 1st to Tuesday 9th September 1941

    Part 2

    Balkans Army (Guderian)



    Position at the end of 9th September 1941


    Guderian’s objective is now so close he can almost touch it. Herzog, with the backing of 4th leichte Panzer, crushed Golubovskiy in Navlja. In two days the two Russian divisions lost nearly 1,000 men and 36.ID (mot) is now pouring north. Supplies are the only problem – the road systems were bad enough to start with, but after the fighting our convoys are reduced to a crawl.



    After fighting and rain, getting the trucks through is a problem


    Not that Guderian has forgotten the Pripyat Pocket. Von Förster drove straight north from Mena into Uneca, trusting the men of 25.ID to defeat Ershakov’s 43 Strelkovaya. His faith in his men was justified, though the task was not easy. 43 Strelkovaya was not a tired and hungry group of retreating soldiers but a fresh unit from the east sent to keep the roads open for the trapped survivors of the marshes. Unfortunately von Förster’s good work was ruined by a breakdown in administration. 25.ID was ordered to remain in Mena, but nobody was detailed to occupy Uneca. As a result, another Russian division was allowed to set up defences. Late on the 6th September Rösener and 35.ID were given the job of retaking the lost province.

    Still a thousand men short of its full complement, 2.ID (mot) “Vörwarts” could not sit still and rest. General Ruoff is known widely to favour the offence, even to the point of rashness. His latest battle could be seen as tempting fate as he took his trucks and armoured cars into the swamps of Chernihiv. To their credit, his men fought with determination against a foe equal in numbers and with the advantage of good defensive terrain. By the 7th Ruoff could claim victory.

    Meise and 345.ID had to fight for more than three days to capture Glazunovka, but to the astonishment of Balkans Army HQ his casualty report listed less than 100 men dead. Russian losses were more than five times that. An impressive result, even if his initial opponents were a single weak rifle division trying to protect a Tannu Tuvan HQ. Some of the gloss was taken off when the victorious 345.ID suffered two heavy air attacks, losing 200 men to Russian level bombers.

    Starodub, scene of Ruoff’s defeat just days ago, is again under attack, this time by General Schmidt’s 10th Panzer Division. Ruoff apparently advised against the attack, warning that 227 Strelkovaya was the hardest for he had ever faced, but Schmidt persuaded Guderian to authorise the river crossing. At first it seemed that Ruoff was correct, as scores of Schmidt’s men died without making the opposite shore. But Guderian was aware of the importance of crushing this pocket of resistance, and division after division was added to the attack, until more than 40,000 troops were committed. Although he too received reinforcements, Reshetov’s men were short of supplies and could not keep up the hail of fire needed to keep such a massive force at bay. Late on the 9th Schmidt reported his bridgehead was secure and the enemy was retreating.



    Disregarding heavy fire, an inflatable boat is launched by men of 10th PzD.


    The high morale of Warlimont’s 45.ID made it virtually unstoppable. As predicted, Zaev’s 238 Strelkovaya was unable to even slow the advance. A desperate Stavka flung unit after unit into Obajan’. All to no avail. At noon Warlimont claimed an unassisted victory. His single division has defeated nearly 40,000 enemy troops, for a cost of less than 450 men.

    Still giving our allies a helping hand, Guderian allowed Köstring to enter Belgorod, even though that province is clearly in the responsibility of the Italians. It was a hard fought battle, but 13.ID finally won after days of see-sawing fortunes. A counter-attack by 238 Strelkovaya was fought off in a couple of hours, though with 9 extra casualties. Unfortunately, that was not the end. Late on the 9th, Guderian was informed by 13.ID HQ that the division was under heavy attack. At least three Soviet divisions were already identified and, weakened by its previous efforts, 13.ID was falling back. General Köstring was directing the defence from the front, but he requested urgent assistance.

    Our allies try hard to assist, but their best is sometimes not enough. To take Zeleznogosrk, General Altrichter was promised assistance from 4a Divisione Alpina “Cuneense” but the help did not arrive until too late. The Russians flooded the area with men, at one point having more than 120,000 troops in action. By the time the Italian mountain troops had reached the front, 107.ID had broken the enemy, but had sustained horrendous casualties in the process. Altrichter has been forced to take his unit to the rear to wait for replacements for his losses.



    A leutnant of 107.ID keeps his men going, despite his wound.


    Great news early on the 6th: Jodl reports he has taken Sel’co and linked up with lead units from Polen Army Sud. The final attack took just hours to shatter the exhausted Russians. Now we have perhaps 20 divisions trapped. Of course he expected an attempt to push him out, and it arrived early on the 7th in the form of 49 Strelkovaya and 37 Kaveleriy. Jodl has told Rommel he has no need to worry – his hold on the province is secure.



    The Pripyat Pocket is now breaking up: the trapped Russians are now doomed


    With the pocket breaking up, the rush to catch those divisions that had slipped the noose began. Uneca, previously ignored, suddenly looked like a swift way to head off the fleeing columns. Rösener and 35.ID were closest and were ready for action and immediately came into contact with an armoured division. Numbers were about equal: it was a test of morale against metal. Rösener claims he has the upper hand, but it cannot be by much.

    The push north-east got a temporary boost with Crüwell’s swift defeat of Lelyushen in Kromy. For once our tanks were able to operate properly and quickly persuaded the men of 197 Kievskaya that the only hope of survival was retreat. That was how to use armour: Höpner showed how not to do it in Novhorod Siverskyi. A well prepared enemy in heavy woods with a fair sized river in front is not really suitable for a frontal attack by a leichte panzer division. He did have the good sense to abandon the attack quickly.

    Italian Expeditionary Army (Pintor)



    Position at the end of 9th September 1941


    With the Russians south of the Pripyat starting to crumble, General Calcagno saw an opportunity in Lokot’, now held by a single rifle division, 36 Zabajkal’skaya. 3a Divisione “Ravenna” began the attack just after midnight on Wednesday 3rd September. Initially things went well, but Soviet reinforcements halted the advance. Luckily there were several units available to assist, and by midday on the Saturday the battle was over, though Italian casualties were high. Last month’s defeat of 2nd Panzer has been answered in the best possible way.

    Pintor finally has his men in position, and was able to manoeuvre 1a Divisione “Supergas” and 14a Divisione “Isonzo” to launch a simultaneous attack on the 14,000 defenders of Scigny. To the joy of the Italians (who cannot maintain an intensive attack) General Gamanik’s soldiers were in full retreat as night fell.


    Österreich Army (von Kluge)



    Position at the end of 9th September 1941


    2nd Gebirgsjäger had gambled the Russians would not expect a counter-attack across the Dniepr into Kherson, and possibly Friedrich-Willich was right. Nevertheless, the 17,000 defenders made a river crossing impossible, despite the courage of the Pioniere regiment. Von Kluge ordered the attempt to halt: he could not afford to see one of his precious divisions bled dry on what was now a pointless exercise.

    Not that the attack on Kherson was useless. Two good Soviet units were tied up while Heißmeyer made a far more promising attack just the north, into Novooleksiyivka. Von Kluge acknowledged that he had failed to reinforce von Roques’ previous attempt, he was sure that the weakened defenders could not successfully oppose 162.ID, fully supplied and in peak condition. As it turned out, the confidence felt in Österreich HQ back in Oleksandriya was misplaced. 162.ID faced heavy opposition from the “demoralised” Ivans, and Freidrich-Willich had to commit his weary men to assist. Still, Heißmeyer and his men did take the province by the afternoon of the 4th September. It was not until late on the 7th that the Soviet High Command could move 206 Strelkovaya from Kherson to attempt to retake Novooloksoyivka, and it seems that was too late. 162.ID has dug in and supplies are trickling in. We may have opened the door to the Crimea.

    Wednesday saw the door opened a bit wider. 1 Gebirgsjäger crossed into Vesele and made quick work of Kirponos and 62 Turkestanskaya, even in the torrential rain. As if that were not enough for the Russians to handle, Bader and 6.ID engaged 103 Motorizavannaya and 18 Tankovaya in Tokmak. The idea was good, and Bader soon had the armoured division on the run. Unfortunately for Bader’s men, two more motorised divisions appeared to support Trubikov, and Österreich HQ is now very concerned with the lack of progress. Heavy rain is falling and 6.ID is running out of food and ammunition.



    It may not be snowing yet, but rain is still miserable


    Von Kluge was still aware, however, of his primary objective, and Österreich HQ was moving closer to Dnipropetrovsk. He was therefore not far from General Hell when 6th Gebirgsjäger and 26.ID made yet another attack ion Oleksandrivka. This time things were better planned, and the unfortunate General Osyka and 300 Strelkovaya were soundly beaten.

    Von Kluge may have turned his attention northwards, but Stavka was still concentrating on the threat to the Crimea. General Popov, whom we have fought a dozen times, has an armoured division (14 Tankovaya) and a rifle division with which to drive out Volkmann and 1st Gebirgsjäger from Vesele. Our previous attempts to maintain a bridgehead across the Dneipr have been failures, but Volkmann and his men have had a chance to recover and supplies have been delivered. Popov will not find this easy.

    Nor will taking Kherson be easy for 2 Gebirgsjäger. Friedrich-Willich has tried yet again to wrest this province from the Russians. Fighting is still raging, rain is pouring down and the two Soviet rifle divisions are in good condition, but Friedrich-Willich is buoyed by the knowledge that they cannot be reinforced: they can only get weaker.

    He should try to tell that to General Glokke. He has been forced to take 33.ID back to Obolon to recover after being defeated in Dinprodzerzhynsk. Petzel, who was supporting the attack with 34.ID has also had to withdraw his men to recover in Cherkasy. Italian units have replaced them ,as Österreich Army has no divisions ready to move into the front line.



    Finalised Battles for the period 1st to 9th September 1941

    Svyetlahorsk: 3,442 (20,000): 877 (25,880)
    Butchino: 696 (21,985): 432 (19,993)
    Izdeshkovo: 807 (28,236): 766 (9,997)
    Boksitogorsk: 4 (10,000): 12 (8,763)
    Navlja: 151 (19,995): 918 (18,995)
    2nd Svyetlahorsk: 50 (6,000): 1 (4,767) (Hungarian)
    Morozova: 393 (19,993): 535 (9,000)
    Kherson: 342 (9,931): 191 (17,543)
    Novooleksiyivska: 309 (19,020): 91 (16,103)
    Peklino: 197 (11,802): 330 (16,815)
    Uneca: 86 (9,476): 139 (8,999)
    Lokot’: 429 (29,995): 235 (16,930) (240 Italian)
    Chernivhiv: 415 (8,965): 368 (8,996)
    Vesele: 60 (9,709): 98 (28,530)
    Butchino: 117 (10,000): 97 (16,997)
    Bryanskaja: 990 (21,724): 561 (28,655)
    Glazunovka: 98 (9,994): 555 (11,632)
    Starodub: 542 (40,575): 768 (36,608)
    Homyel’: 470 (25,726): 670 (15,146) (180 Hungarian)
    Kuvsinovo: 89 (9,992): 90 (7,998)
    Obojan’: 447 (9,992): 783 (39,967)
    Belgorod: 1,152 (19,870): 771 (54,368)
    2nd Belgorod: 9 (8,853): 20 (7,678)
    Gorki: 702 (9,881): 567 (16,585)
    Olekandrivka: 117 (19,947): 229 (15,885)
    Krasnaya Zarya: 89 (9,994): 936 (9,999)
    Azonova: 183 (9,996): 327 (8,998)
    Zeleznogorsk: 1,677 (31,980): 1,246 (122,689)
    Kletnja: 392 (23,994): 1,275 (17,630)
    Sel’co: 8 (9,317): 59 (7,909)
    1st Afimino: 65 (9,995): 92 (23,033)
    2nd Afimino: 74 (9,996): 85 (9,996)
    Kromy: 48 (9,857): 267 (9,770)
    Novhorod Siverskyi: 7 (10,000): 2 (9,993)
    Dinprodzerzhynsk: 2,729 (19,685): 1,719 (41,337)
    Scigny: 84 (11,991): 70 (14,060) (Italian)

    Total Battle Casualties for the period 1st to 9th September 1941

    Hungarian: 230
    Italian: 324
    German: 11,696
    Russian: 16,182

    Prior Battle Casualties

    Hungarian: 541
    Italian: 2,849
    German: 304.368
    Russian: 326,028

    Total Battle Casualties to date

    Hungarian: 230 + 541 = 771
    Italian: 324 + 2,849 = 3,173
    German: 11,696 + 304,368 = 316,064
    Russian: 16,182 + 326,028 = 342,210


    Bombing Summary for the period 1st September to 9th September 1941

    Our planes have again come under sustained attack, despite the presence of thousands of our fighters. The VVS was so determined that some of our missions were aborted. Müller-Michels and 5th Kampffliegerkorps were driven from Semenivka by Falaleev leading no less than 9 brigades of interceptors. Having won that tussle, Falaleev then took on Wever over Bologoye, but 8th Kampffliegerkorps was able to complete its task of bombing the unfortunate Sinkiang units holding that province. Weise with 5th Schlachtfliegerkorps were not so fortunate: Falaleev made sure that not one of our dive-bombers made it the target in Olenino. Von Salmuth had to wait until Thursday for air support, when Kitzinger’s Ju-188s appeared overhead. The VVS had not finished with von Salmuth though. On the 4th his men had to take cover while Waber and 600 fighters cleared the sky of Golovanov with 30 and 33 BAD. No bombs were dropped, but it was too close for comfort.

    Falaleev seemed to be everywhere. On 3rd September he attacked 4th Schlachtfliegerkorps over Bryanskaja, but at last our interceptors were ready. Waber with 1200 fighters soon put paid to the brief period of VVS ascendency in the air.



    Retribution at last: Waber takes on Falaleev


    Falaleev was beaten, but not destroyed. The next day he tried to protect Thor’s bombers over Kursk, and despite the presence of Fisser’s 600 fighters he tied up enough of our aircraft to allow Thor to complete two missions.

    On the bright side, the concentration of fighters under Falaleev’s command left the rest of the VVS understrength. Yakovlev and his single air regiment were routed when met by Fisser and 600 fighters over Kyiv. An attempt by Rog to achieve local air superiority in the south was also easily beaten by Chrtistiansen, assisted by 300 Italian Macchi MC.200 Saettas.

    The Italians proved invaluable when, with Fisser occupied over Kursk, Smushkevich and his dive bombers hit Volkmann’s Gebirgsjägers in Nikopol’. One raid was frighteningly effective, but Forgier and his Macchis made sure it was the only chance Smushkevich got.



    A welcome sight: our Italian allies help clear the air of the VVS



    Luftwaffe and Axis Allies

    Semenivka: Müller-Michels with 5th Kampffliegerkorps: 140, 316 (456)
    Bologoye: Wever with 8th Kampffliegerkorps: 244, 286 (530)
    Svyetlahorsk: Rapaich with 1 Légihadsereg: 60, 128, 123 (311)
    Bryanskaja: Hoffman von Waldau with 4th Schlachtfliegerkorps: 86
    Olenino: Kitzinger with 3rd Kampffliegerkorps: 101, 172, 228 (501)
    Olenino: Löhr with 2nd Schlachtfliegerkorps: 90, 162, 158 (510)
    Klincy: Rapaich with 1 Légihadsereg: 124, 57, 175, 119 (468)
    Oleksandrivka: Udet with 3rd Schlachtfliegerkorps: 68, 258, 227 (553)
    El’tsy: Kitzinger with 3rd Kampffliegerkorps: 135
    Belgorod: Gamondi with 1st Italian Expeditionary Bomber Wing: 79
    Azanovo: Löhr with 2nd Schlachtfliegerkorps: 94, 231, 166, 96 (587)
    Tokmak: Udet with 3rd Schlachtfliegerkorps: 155, 195, 90, 91, 194, 179, 91 (995)


    VVS

    Kursk: Thor with 2 and 11 BAD: 76, 132
    Nikopol’: Smushkevich and 25, 77 ShAD: 107
    Vygonici: Skripko with 10 and 72 ShAD: 58

    Total Bombing Casualties for the period 1st to 9th September 1941

    Hungarian: Nil
    Italian: Nil
    German: 297
    Russian: 5,211

    Previous Bombing Casualties

    Hungarian: 128
    Italian: Nil
    German: 3,787
    Russian: 222,635

    Total Bombing Casualties to date

    Hungarian: Nil + 128 = 128
    Italian: Nil + Nil = Nil
    German: 297 + 3,787 = 4,084
    Russian: 5,211 + 222,635 = 227,846


    East Front at the end of 9th September 1941




    Total East Front Casualties for the period 1st to 9th September 1941

    Hungarian: 230 + Nil = 230
    Italian: 324 + Nil = 324
    German: 11,696 + 297 = 11,993
    Russian: 16,182 + 5,211 = 21,393

    Previous Casualties

    Hungarian: 659
    Italian: 2,849
    German: 308,155
    Russian: 548,663

    Total East Front Casualties to date

    Hungarian: 230 + 659 = 889
    Italian: 324 + 2,849 = 3,173
    German: 11,993 + 308,155 = 320,148
    Russian: 21,393 + 548,663 = 570,056
    Last edited by Uriah; 27-10-2011 at 10:03.

  2. #2762
    Field Marshal Baltasar's Avatar
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    Finally! Not only one but two Kessel or encirclements with another cut off division on the crimean peninsular. With those gone, the Russians will lose about an army worth of troops, which should greatly hurt their efforts, especially once you push for Stalingrad.

  3. #2763
    Moscow is just so close! the last province is the most difficult anyway with possibilities of some supply troubles.
    The casualty rate is not that good, but it helps when you capture the encircles in the 2 Kessels (even if they are not reported).

  4. #2764
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bugwar View Post
    Perhaps. Remember though, success makes up for a lot of shortcomings.
    I think I'll ask to have that carved on my tombstone.

    Quote Originally Posted by Baltasar View Post
    Finally! Not only one but two Kessel or encirclements with another cut off division on the crimean peninsular. With those gone, the Russians will lose about an army worth of troops, which should greatly hurt their efforts, especially once you push for Stalingrad.
    You can't see it but there are two divs near the Crimea. They are a p.i.t.a. as they keep mounting 1 hr long attacks - soon Osterreich must kill them!

    But it is good - about 20 Soviet divs trapped on top of the 20+ killed in the Baltic States pocket. At some point I must check how many units the Soviets had at the start of the war and how many now.

    Quote Originally Posted by Surt View Post
    Moscow is just so close! the last province is the most difficult anyway with possibilities of some supply troubles.
    The casualty rate is not that good, but it helps when you capture the encircles in the 2 Kessels (even if they are not reported).
    The casualty rate is increasing as my bombing becomes less effective. It is now hard to keep more than 3-4 bomber units going at once., I am building infra as fast as I can, as well as upgrading airbases, but I appear to have reached some sort of boundary. So I am trading casualties for territory. The rain in the south has not helped.

    It is difficult to notice with the concentration on attacks etc, but a large number of my units are in the rear getting resupplied. Supply at the front, particularly in the south, is getting quite bad.

    But I am still letting the AI do everything. If it doesn't use the strat bombers soon, however, I may transfer them out. I am reluctant to try them in France, however, as the UK fighters will chew them up. Supply should be OK though - not much draw from the West.

  5. #2765
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    I noted how many units the USSR had at D1 of Barbarossa: 986

    They now have 783. Most losses in GARR, but a few ARM and MOT. I can't tell how many they built since Aprilbut I would guess 15-20. So about 220 units destroyed - 55 full divs.

    Germany now has 714. Admittedly a lot in the West, but they have 25 + 25 It/Hung divs in the East.

    So an interesting position. USSR has far more MP than me (about 1,000 to 478), but can it replace its losses quickly enough? And can I keep advancing quickly without losses getting too high?

    I still have the technological edge, but it may come down to MP. And what the USA does of course. A DOW followed by landings in the West could be bad. Even a massive strat bombing campaign would be bad. I only have one INT unit in the west, and heavy IC loss would be a problem for my supply/replacement/infra improvement spending. (Not a huge number of new units being built with MP the problem again).
    Last edited by Uriah; 26-10-2011 at 12:15.

  6. #2766
    Colonel shepherd352's Avatar
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    The advance continues and Moscow is within reach but other major cities (VPs) are still quite far away. With the weather already turning, it seems that the defeat of the Soviet Union is more likely to occur next year. It turns out that it is good that the pace in the South has been a little slow. Closing on Stalingrad in the middle of winter is a very bad place to be! I always find supplies more of a problem in the South. Have you opened a sea supply route yet? Every little bit helps.

    If you lose some IC due to Allied strategic bombing, you can always adjust your occupation policy. IC or manpower?

    Great work on the story.

  7. #2767
    Quote Originally Posted by Uriah View Post
    I noted how many units the USSR had at D1 of Barbarossa: 986

    They now have 783. Most losses in GARR, but a few ARM and MOT. I can't tell how many they built since Aprilbut I would guess 15-20. So about 220 units destroyed - 55 full divs.
    So many! victory is at hand.

    Germany now has 714. Admittedly a lot in the West, but they have 25 + 25 It/Hung divs in the East.

    So an interesting position. USSR has far more MP than me (about 1,000 to 478), but can it replace its losses quickly enough? And can I keep advancing quickly without losses getting too high?

    I still have the technological edge, but it may come down to MP. And what the USA does of course. A DOW followed by landings in the West could be bad. Even a massive strat bombing campaign would be bad. I only have one INT unit in the west, and heavy IC loss would be a problem for my supply/replacement/infra improvement spending. (Not a huge number of new units being built with MP the problem again).
    Don't you have far too many interceptors in the east, I usually keep 3-4x2 int which is more than enough in the east, that leaves 10-12 in the west which is enough against the UK, they should have bombed you to pieces now???

  8. #2768
    General Forster's Avatar
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    If you can take out Moscow before winter, you really shouldn't have many problems after that. Still, having Leningrad gives you some breathing room and a secure northern flank. As long as there isn't a terrible disaster, I suspect you will win the war in the East.

  9. #2769
    I too am returning ! I'd been a faithful reader until slightly before Barbarossa and I've just caught up on my reading...

    You seem to be doing great, as long as you can keep the soviets on the run...

    And be thankful you're not running FtM, the *english* are mounting invasions all along the Atlantic Coast. And I don't even want to think about what the Americans will do once they join the Allies (*if* they join, my spies and diplomats are working on preventing this).
    However, it makes for a very nice change of scenery. I've seen Germany disregard Belgium and NL and just steamroll over the Maginot Line and another time the US joined the Comintern...

    Back on-topic: what are your plans regarding mechanized infantry ? Will you deploy some, replacing motorized, in order to preserve manpower or do you fear it'd cause a supply collapse ?

  10. #2770
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    Hi Uriah,
    I just wanted to write to let you know how much I'm enjoying your AAR. The detail and creativity are fantastic! Be sure and thank your wife for us too for allowing (I believe once you said she described it as "wasting") the time to play the game and for all of your writing. Kudos!
    Ps, right now I'm only on page 76, but I had to jump ahead and say something since your AAR is so enjoyable.

  11. #2771
    Wow, alot happening. I love the detail in your reports. I'm guessing alot is going on ATM (in game and in RL).

    How far ahead is the game from last update?

  12. #2772
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shepherd352 View Post
    The advance continues and Moscow is within reach but other major cities (VPs) are still quite far away. With the weather already turning, it seems that the defeat of the Soviet Union is more likely to occur next year. It turns out that it is good that the pace in the South has been a little slow. Closing on Stalingrad in the middle of winter is a very bad place to be! I always find supplies more of a problem in the South. Have you opened a sea supply route yet? Every little bit helps.

    If you lose some IC due to Allied strategic bombing, you can always adjust your occupation policy. IC or manpower?

    Great work on the story.
    We may get Moscow this year but the weather cripples my air and that sends casualties skyrocketing. Every battle is an attrition: my well armed few against a horde of Russians. I am becoming resinged to speniding winter on the Dniepr: just not enough men in the south.

    Occupation policy is for MP - I have plenty of IC.

    And how can I get sea supply when Turkey holds the Bosporus? Can I set up convoys from Rumania/Bulgaria? Never bothered to try it as getting supply there is hard enough.

    Quote Originally Posted by Surt View Post
    So many! victory is at hand.



    Don't you have far too many interceptors in the east, I usually keep 3-4x2 int which is more than enough in the east, that leaves 10-12 in the west which is enough against the UK, they should have bombed you to pieces now???
    I have found the VVS keen to shoot my bombers: losses have been very high even with most of my fighters in the east. One of the reasons for lulls in bombing has been enforced R&R for replacements. The Brits have not achieved a lot with Strat bombing. I would say it has cost them a fortune: when my INTs hit their bombers we harry them all the way tothe coast, and they generall lose about 100 bombers out of 300. They only seem to have 3 strat bomber groups.

    Of cours, if the USA joins in, I will need to re-evaluate.

    Quote Originally Posted by Forster View Post
    If you can take out Moscow before winter, you really shouldn't have many problems after that. Still, having Leningrad gives you some breathing room and a secure northern flank. As long as there isn't a terrible disaster, I suspect you will win the war in the East.
    I am confident if I can keep losses down. MP is now a big issue. I cannot afford to trade at 2:1.

    Quote Originally Posted by kigrwik View Post
    I too am returning ! I'd been a faithful reader until slightly before Barbarossa and I've just caught up on my reading...

    You seem to be doing great, as long as you can keep the soviets on the run...

    And be thankful you're not running FtM, the *english* are mounting invasions all along the Atlantic Coast. And I don't even want to think about what the Americans will do once they join the Allies (*if* they join, my spies and diplomats are working on preventing this).
    However, it makes for a very nice change of scenery. I've seen Germany disregard Belgium and NL and just steamroll over the Maginot Line and another time the US joined the Comintern...

    Back on-topic: what are your plans regarding mechanized infantry ? Will you deploy some, replacing motorized, in order to preserve manpower or do you fear it'd cause a supply collapse ?

    No invasions as yet but the USA is in the Allied camp - I suspect it won't take much for them to join.

    I have about 4 mech divs under construction, and depending on how the winter goes will probably increase that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Bartman View Post
    Hi Uriah,
    I just wanted to write to let you know how much I'm enjoying your AAR. The detail and creativity are fantastic! Be sure and thank your wife for us too for allowing (I believe once you said she described it as "wasting") the time to play the game and for all of your writing. Kudos!
    Ps, right now I'm only on page 76, but I had to jump ahead and say something since your AAR is so enjoyable.
    Thanks Bartman. My wife doesn't so much "allow" as "suffer" me to continue. Most of the time she thinks I am working.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warlordtheft View Post
    Wow, alot happening. I love the detail in your reports. I'm guessing alot is going on ATM (in game and in RL).


    How far ahead is the game from last update?
    Thanks Warlord. There is a lot happening. I have thought often about shortening it, but what do I leave out? Something quite small (a lost battle, a new divsion) could turn out to be critical). And I enjoy analysing the detail of the computer's tactics. (When I am not tearing out my hair at the insanity of some of my generals!).

    There has been a big delay in updates: I had three University exams to sit and then a month's worth of household duties to catch up on. But the next update is nearly finished (well, to be accurate, nore than half done - but I take the attitude that starting something is the hard bit.) Give me a few days.

    There is the added problem that I have both "Guderian's War II" and "Total War" (the remake of "Fire in the East" which was a remake of "Drang nach Osten") on their way to me. I have measured my games room and it is physically possible to set up "GW II" and "Case Blue" together (8' x 12') to fight the whole of the East Front.

    But do not fear - I can't play them when I'm alone, and there is only so much time I can stand looking at the maps before people think I have gone into a coma.


    Believe it or not, I am now playing and writing nearly siumultaneously. I have only played up yo the end of the 18th September.

    This is not necessarily eagerness to get my updates to you, but partly because it is so much easier to write while events are fairly recent. Playing more than fortnight ahead gets very confusing I find. And, I will admit, it is a bit daunting to suddenly realise I have about 40 hours of writing backlog!
    Last edited by Uriah; 03-12-2011 at 14:25.

  13. #2773
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    Wednesday 10th to Thursday 18th September 1941 (Part 1 - Baltic to Balkans)

    During this period a few research projects were completed, but the one that created the most excitement was finalised on the 15th. Luftwaffe engineers demonstrated that it was possible to power an aircraft by means of a new type of engine which they call a “jet”. According to the blueprints that I saw, planes equipped with these engines will have no propellers, just “jets” which squirt air backwards at great speed. Personally I would never get into such an aircraft, it sounds very risky. But I am sure my brother Ernst will leap at the chance to fly one when they become available. That will be some time, though. This research is very advanced and requires a great deal of time. Despite Minister Göring’s protestations, the demands of the Heer prevailed and the funds were assigned to studies in Assault Concentration.



    The Hes8A: is the start of a new era in aircraft production?


    There was a similar story with the research teams that worked on Strategic Bombing Tactics. They will now work on developing improved Supply Organisation, an area where we are far in advance of the world. Another group have provided our Sicherungs units with more effective security procedures. These are to work on Integrated Support for our specialised army units.

    A further source of excitement was the announcement by General von Blomberg that a new army was to be formed. General Höhne has been appointed to lead the new force, which will be called the Army of the Ukraine. Strangely, Höhne is skilled in defence while the role of the army will be to drive east, but he has great talent in logistics which seems to have swung the day for him. At the moment the army contains just one Korps, Kirchner’s 2nd schwere Panzerkorps, currently centred in Odessa. The new army is to be attached to Heeeresgruppe Sud, which will transfer 1 Hadtest to Heeresgruppe Ost.

    The creation of the new army brought to attention another indication of the losses in the east. The assignment of hundreds of administrative officers depleted our pool of available leaders, dropping to just 134% of requirement. It has been the goal of the Wehrmacht to aim for 140% and is obvious that this goal cannot be met at current training rates. Cabinet moved promptly. Against the protests of Ministers Goebbels and Fricke the budget for espionage was slashed and the available funds and recruits given to the officer training establishment. With 90 officers graduating each day it is hoped we can replace those being lost in the fighting in Russia.


    Baltic Army (Kesselring)




    Position at the end of 18th September 1941


    It was late on Wednesday 10th that the Baltic Army was at last in position to not only hold Leningrad and cover the flank of Polen Army Nord but to also expand our territory. General Jahn and 2nd Marine-Sturm Division had the honour of the first attack and showed that the marines were keen to get back into action. Between 4PM on Wednesday and 9AM the following morning they drove 142 Strelkovaya from Käkisalmi while taking 40 casualties. Considering it was a night attack against an entrenched defence it was a sterling effort. They were assisted by two night bombing missions by Wever’s 8th Kampffliegerkorps (now based at the fully operational Leningrad airfield).

    It took until the morning of the 17th for Jahn to catch up with the retreating Russians. Primakov decided to make a stand in Hiitola, but it was not a wise decision. 142 Strelkovaya had managed to recover a lot of its morale and supplies had reached its quartermasters, but it was still no match for Jahn’s marines. The Russians held for just over a day before once more marching north.


    Polen Army Nord (von Manstein)



    Position at the end of 18th September 1941


    Soon after midnight on the 10th we finally won the bloody battle of Olenino. 5th and 11th Tankovaya held for nearly two weeks, but with four divisions ranged against them they could take no more. At last the Daugava is behind us.

    Eicke may have thought that he had won Afimino after two battles, but no-one told General Tobukhin. For most of the 10th 28.ID fought again for possession of the province before the Russians withdrew. The division will not be going anywhere for some time – at least long enough for the empty supply wagons to be refilled. And that could take a while this far from home.

    With 44 and 60.ID almost in control of El’tsy, Felber and 62.ID moved to take Perlevo. Both these provinces border the Volga, a river that could prove to be a useful winter front line for von Manstein’s men. El’tsy was captured at noon on 11th but Pevlevo took a while longer. On the 14th Kitzinger and 3rd Kampffliegerkorps commenced bombing and it was that night Eicke’s forward scouts reported that the enemy positions were empty.

    With Simoniak swept clear, his men still full of energy and his supplies hardly touched, General von der Chevallerie was never going to sit still. 95.ID headed east, straight into Torzok. At first everything went well and the early messages to Polen Army Nord HQ promised an swift and cheap victory. Unfortunately for the dashing von der Chevallerie his opponent had other ideas. Marcinkevich steadied his fragile divisions, and 95.ID was stopped in its tracks. Not even the assistance of Barckhausen’s 44.ID and around the clock bombing could shift the Soviets, and we have heard that fresh units are moving to support 312 and 316 Strelkovaya. The road to Moskva may not be as easy as we thought.



    Torzok: Initially von Manstein thought we would take the province in days. It was not to be, even with some of the heaviest bombing seen in the East.


    At 4AM on Saturday 73.ID reported strong defensive fire from two motorised divisions as it entered Barjatino. Although the resistance was crushed within three days, it did cost 775 lives, double the losses inflicted on the Russians. The two Soviet divisions escaped east, no doubt to prepare another redoubt.

    The defenders of Butchino also escaped east, but they were not as fortunate as their comrades in Barjatino. 1st Panzer dealt them some heavy blows, co-operating well with 16.ID from Polen Army Sud. The casualty figures were reversed, with the Russians losing two to one. Nehring can feel his earlier defeat by Alexandrov has been avenged.

    General Kalmukoff was given another tough task when ordered to take Selizhorvaro, but the veteran of Tannenberg and Lötzen would not have been deterred by facing more than three times his number, including an armoured division. The prize was the 23ya Armiya and 39th Corps HQs at the rear of the Soviet troops. General von Witzleben, commander of VII Armeekorps, has told Polen Army Nord he cannot reinforce 88.ID – every unit he has is already committed. I am sure our men will perform bravely, but even a T-26 can wreak havoc on an infantry assault. Still, 5 Tankovaya has been in some heavy fighting and the Russian supply network is falling apart, so perhaps their ammunition boxes are empty. Kalmakoff has wisely elected to attack late at night which can only help his men.

    At the same time as Kalmukoff’s infantry were cautiously advancing towards a numerous and potentially lethal enemy, not far to the south Nehring’s panzertruppen were roaring down the dirt tracks of Djat’kovo, caution thrown to the winds. Life is not fair. 88.ID had the job of digging out 35,000 well armed (if poorly supplied) soldiers, while 1st Panzer was opposed by the clerks and mechanics of half a dozen HQ units. Strictly speaking, Nehring was outnumbered, but facing nothing more than side-arms and a few rifles his Panzer IIJs were virtually impregnable. Late on the 15th he filed his report. He had lost just two men but had confirmed more than 400 Russian casualties. And none of those HQs would be able to provide effective command for some time to come. Djat’kovo was not yet ours, however. As our tanks moved east they encountered a Russian division marching west, obviously sent to protect the HQs units. Strung out along the roads 97 Strelkovaya did not take long to defeat, but the lack of caution shown by the lead units of 1st Panzer did lead to substantial losses on our part as well.



    Plumes of dust as Nehring orders full speed ahead


    Polen Army Nord was relatively quiet for a few days, with many units preoccupied with moving to new positions. Once again it was Kreß von Kressenstein who was first off the blocks, engaging 133 and 134 Strelkovaya in Viaz’ma. 30.ID will not find this easy, as both the enemy units are new and at virtually full strength. Von Kressenstrein must hope his skill and his men’s experience is enough to offset his lack of numbers and the terrain which will aid Zhadov’s troops.

    Within an hour another attack was launched, just to the south of Viaz’ma. 73.ID under General Brennecke was ready for action and Poplavski’s 210 Motorizavannaya was the only unit holding Ugra, also the base for 44 Corps HQ. Although this started as a small battle, things have escalated rapidly. My brother’s unit, 3rd leichte Panzer “Angriff” has joined 73.ID and reconnaissance flights reveal two motorised units moving to assist Poplavski. I always get nervous when my brother is involved in fighting infantry in the woods: one lucky shot with an anti-tank rifle and a Pzkpfw 38(t) is disabled.



    On the edge of the forest, a mixed force of light tanks and infantry engage the Russians


    The last news for the 18th came from Hänicke in Vasilevska. Despite the inauspicious start, he has managed to pull off a decisive victory. The arrival of 101.ID (mot) was the final blow, forcing the Russians to break off, leaving 2,000 dead behind.


    Polen Army Sud (Rommel)



    Position at the end of 18th September 1941


    The Russians trapped in Klincy fought ferociously but Rommel would not relent. Division after division was flung into the battle until we had more than 36,000 men against 95,000 Russians. Lack of ammunition and faltering morale weakened the enemy and at last they moved east, squeezing into the already congested province of Bryanskaja.

    New orders arrived on 13th, as OKH decided that the drive for Moskva must have priority. Stage two of Unternehmen Sargnagel is to be implemented. Rommel will alter his axis of advance and swing his entire army north-east. 1 Hadtest is to assume responsibility for linking up with Balkans Army at Bryansk.

    No-one seems to know whether von Sponeck’s attack on Barsuki was part of Sargnagel or was already planned. It is roughly on the new line of advance, and if it were Rommel’s first step on the road to the Kremlin then it was a good start. 4th Panzer only took a few hours to overrun Biriuzov’s two rifle divisions, and losses were low.

    I can imagine the scenes at Rommel’s HQ when the news came from Steiner’s HQ that Shevchenko has surrendered in Bryanskaja. After 2 weeks in which they had been forced into a smaller and smaller perimeter, the Russian commanders could not ask more of their men. The arrival of nearly 100,000 men fleeing Klincy must have been too much. Our records show just 90,000 men surrendered, but this cannot take into account thousands of men whose units were simply overrun. With the Pripyat pocket now reduced (other than the Deniskowicze area far to the west) Rommel is now free to concentrate solely on his new objective.



    From the woods and swamps, thousands of Soviet troops emerged to surrender



    1 Hadtest (Shvoy)



    Position at the end of 18th September1941


    At almost the same time as Jodl’s victory in Sel’co, 8 gyal. won its fight for Zukovka. The Russian front line is being pushed further and further back from the Pripyat pocket. General Mishinin made a last desperate attempt with 202 Motorizavannaya, but the presence of 6th PzD ensured that it would fail. Grauert’s bombers were just the final touch.

    Hungarian armour also had a victory, as General Magyarosy led 1 Páncéloshadosztál in a fast moving battle with a Russian cavalry unit in Kirov. Against horsemen, even the lightly armoured Hungarian tanks had no risk of failure, and overnight the Soviets faded east. Neither side lost more than a handful of men.



    The enemy cavalry may not have caused much damage, but many Hungarian tanks suffered mechanical breakdowns during the battle for Kirov. This Toldi has been towed back for repairs.


    Balkans Army (Guderian)



    Situation at end of 18th September 1941


    With years of experience now behind him, General Petersen was an obvious choice to take his division across the Desna River and into Novhorod-Siverskyi. 22.ID (mot) carried out the crossing with little trouble, though casualties were high. After that it was just a matter of time before the Soviets were pushed further away from their trapped comrades. Stavka was able to give General Mironov one additional division, but with the bridgehead secure three more of our divisions stormed across the Desna and after 8 days the last of the Russians left. There is now no hope for those trapped in Bryanskaja.

    Guderian, while making sure that the trapped Soviets do not escape, is more interested in pushing east. Phleps was ordered to push north of Kursk into Zolotuhino, with support from Meise’s 345.ID (mot) which attacked southeast from Glazunovka. Pushkin had three divisions when the attack began, but two broke and ran immediately. 229 Strelkovaya tried to hold back the twin attack, but early on the 12th it too was routed.

    It took Jodl four days to convince 49 Strelkovaya and 37 Kavaleriy that he was not going to leave Sel’co. Perhaps Stavka had ordered that every effort be made to link up with the trapped comrades of Bryanskaja. The arrival of reinforcements finally made the Russians see reason and abandon their efforts.

    Scigny, captured by the Italians, was considered to be under threat, so Guderian sent Warlimont and 45.ID to bolster the defence. It arrived just in time, as “Supergas” and “Isonzo” found their way blocked by 106.Strelkovaya. With Warlimont’s 10,000 well equipped men present the Russians were soon beaten back. Trifinov, like many Russian commanders lately, would not accept defeat. Again he ordered his men to stop and block the advance. This time it was more serious and it was only after three days of combat that Scrigny was made safe.

    Not all news from the Balkans Army was good. The drive into Uneca that had started so positively slowly turned into a stalemate. Even the arrival of 25.ID was not enough to break the spirit of Skvortsov and 13 Tankovaya. Rösener’s belief that his men’s morale would triumph over the Russian armour now seems like hubris. Our men have pulled back, but Guderian was not likely to allow a single armour division, no matter how good its commander, to alter his plans. By dawn on Friday Briesen had been ordered to take the province. 5.ID tried all day to gain ground but Skvortzov’s tanks turned back every attempt. At midnight the pointless attacks were called off.



    The T-26 is not hard to knock out, but on the plains of Uneca they were enough to twice turn back our infantry


    Orel is giving every indication of a city where the Russians have decided to make a stand. 170 Strelkovaya is showing that garrison divisions cannot be assumed to be a walkover. General Meise has acknowledged his motorised troops were not enough and has enlisted the help of the tanks and Sturmpanzers of 13 PzD. Still the stubborn conscripts hold out, and another garrison unit has been detected moving up. Exacerbating the problem, Crüwell reports his division is low on supplies and cannot keep fighting much longer.



    Orel: the river Oka has proved a stumbling block for 345.ID (mot). Aerial reconnaissance has confirmed more Russians are entering the city


    On the afternoon of Saturday 14th Guderian showed his frustration with the dogged defenders of Uneca. Having watched a series of commanders fail to crack the resolve of Borzilov and 131 Motorizavannaya, he assigned one of his best generals to the task. Ruoff and “Vorwärts” were ready for the challenge and soon had Borzilov in trouble. General Briesen rallied his men and 5.ID joined the attack. The Russians flung several divisions in to the battle but it was too late: the line had been broken and Guderian could congratulate Ruoff on yet another successful mission.

    Early on the 15th, General Warlimont took over the attack on Belgorod that had been abandoned by General Köstring (when 13.ID (mot) was caught up in the attack on the Italian positions in Okhtyrka). Guderian was not happy that his men are still being dragged south, but with Obajan defenceless (and beyond it Kursk and Krasnopillya both without garrisons) he had little choice but to launch a pre-emptive strike on the Soviets, who were poised to punch a hole deep behind the Italian Expeditionary force.



    Battle of Belgorod: without Warlimont’s swift action, Malinovskij may have been able to launch his motorised troops into the Italian rear areas.


    Unfortunately, the drain of infantry units to the south may cost the Balkans Army dearly. Many of our panzer leaders have been anxious to challenge the Soviet armoured divisions directly, “panzer gegen panzer” but opportunities have been few and far between. Now Schmidt has the opportunity, but it is doubtful if he appreciates it. It is not the longed for sweeping battle across the steppes, but a slow and painful crawl through the forests of Verkhopol’e. Hadeev has his 8th Tankovaya buried in the woods and 10th Panzer must inch its way forward. In an open battle our tanks would crush the flimsy T-36s and BT-7s, but in these restricted and close quarters the Russian gunners are proving effective. Word is that a Russian rifle division is moving up, which will make Schmidt’s job even harder. He needs infantry to clear a way for his vehicles, but there is none to spare.



    Deep in the woods, a T-26 crew wait for sound of approaching German armour


    Sel’co now secure, Jodl is pushing closer and closer to Bryansk, and has gratefully accepted the offer of a Hungarian division by General Shvoy. In coordination with 8 gyal. 100.ID (mot) has moved into into Pochep. Frenkel has an armoured division to back up his infantry, but like many of the Soviet mobile units it is so degraded that it is not capable of more than minor help.
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    Last edited by Uriah; 07-12-2011 at 10:57.

  14. #2774
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Hmmm the system for uploading images has changed. Took me a fair while to work out while I could only upload 5 images. And now I can't work out how to delete the "attached thumbnails".

    If anyone knows, can they put up a post?

  15. #2775
    Sky-Whale Captain Dasfubar's Avatar
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    Excellent update as usual!

    (Yay, Jet engines!)
    My own little AAR Glory adn Poor Spellign: The Story fo Brandenburg

    "Dasfubar, I now pronounce you as the most real life productive member of the Paradox OT (that we know of)." -MacGregor

  16. #2776
    I´m glad you are back.

  17. #2777
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dasfubar View Post
    Excellent update as usual!

    (Yay, Jet engines!)
    Thanks Dasfubar - may be a while for jet planes though.

    Quote Originally Posted by varetta View Post
    I´m glad you are back.
    Like Evita, I never really went away. (Good lord, now I'm quoting musicals!) Just a pause for RL.


    Had to edit the update as I forgot to mention it was Part 1 - I haven't given up on the south. And nor have the Soviets.

    And I put in the wrong photo: a mixed force of Germans/Italains instead of a mixed force of tanks/infantry. I must speak to the proofreader.

    Give me another couple of days - my figures never balance the first time.
    Last edited by Uriah; 07-12-2011 at 10:59.

  18. #2778
    Lt. General Uriah's Avatar
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    Wednesday 10th to Thursday 18th September 1941 (Part 2)



    [Italian Expeditionary Army (Pintor)



    Position at end of 8th September 1941


    General Rokossovsky is a name to be remembered. Like a thunderbolt his men hit Krasnodom, completely overwhelming La Ferla’s efforts to organise a defence. With four divisions attacking simultaneously from three directions, “Tridentina” and “Taurinese” lasted less than 24 hours. Messe tried to retake the province with “Taurinese” but achieved nothing but to increase the death toll.

    While being battered in Krasnodom, Pintor’s troops were doing well in Sinezerki. Caboni’s 4a Divsione Alpina “Cuneense” took on more than four times its number, including an armoured division. In twelve hours it had won the ensuing battle, albeit with considerably higher losses. There is a rumour that the Russian units were already retreating when Carboni attacked, but there is no mention of that in his report. Late on the 14th there was an improvised attack by 36 Zabajkal’skaya but although initially taken by surprise, the Italians held out until reinforced and then repulsed their more numerous opponents. Overall, a good performance by the Alpini. On the other hand, Gariboldi’s brief battle with 163 Motorizavannaya for possession of Chutove was over in just 2 hours, as “Firenze” could make no impression on the defenders.



    Battle of Sinerzeki


    Somebody in Stavka is starting to analyse our strategy, as was shown by Lavrinovich’s attack on Okhtyrka. Nominally defended by nearly 15,000 men, the 8,000 infantry of 219 Motorizavannaya should have been easily defeated. However, one of the two divisions was Gariboldi’s “Frienze”, still recovering from its rough handling in Chutove two days before. The other was Köstring’s 13.ID (mot) already suffering badly from its attempts to secure Belgorod. Far too south for hope of assistance from the Balkan’s Army, when Gariboldi ordered a retreat, Köstring did not argue. His men showed their courage though, shielding the retreating Italians who lost just 40 men.



    The mixed force of Italians and Germans was unable to hold the Soviets


    Lavrinovich did not have the province yet. As an indicator of the confusion in that section of the front, he found his way blocked by a division from a third army, Engelbrecht’s 4th Gebirgsjäger Division, part of the Österreich Army. The gebirgsjägers, as one would expect of such elite troops, are fighting well, but they too are close to exhaustion from continuous fighting and cannot hold back the triumphant Russians for long.

    Although the Italians struggle to hold their own, mainly due to antiquated equipment and the small size of their units, nobody is criticising their endeavour. Time and again they have thrown themselves into battles that can have no outcome but terrible casualties. It may be that the battle for Kolpny ends up as another of these. Stung by Guderian’s complaints about the drain on the Balkan Army, General Pintor ordered Calvi di Bergolo to move north, directly into Russian units moving to engage Guderian’s men. With just 6,000 soldiers, 1e Divisione “Supergas” has thrust itself into the path of two cavalry units and a rifle division: more than 20,000 men. Maybe surprise will assist our allies, but few here in Berlin expect anything but an immense butcher’s bill from this rash action. It would have been far wiser to fortify Scigny and wait for reinforcements to arrive.



    Waves of Russian infantry advance on “Supergas”: they look confident and have a right to be so


    If Pintor thought his aggressive reaction might deter the Soviets he was wrong. At 6AM on Tuesday General Romero alerted Italian Army HQ that 28a Divisione “Aosta” was under attack. Once again it was the new Russian general Rokossovky, using two motorized divisions in a pincer movement to swoop on Kremenchuk. Like his fellow army commanders south of the Pripyat, Pintor has every unit committed and the chances of holding the province are slim.


    Österreich Army (von Kluge)



    Position at end of 18th September 1941


    162.ID has repelled the attack on Novooleksiyiska by the two trapped Russian divisions trapped in Kherson. (The assistance rendered by Friedrich-Willich and 2nd Gebirgsjäger cannot be overlooked – it could have been a close thing had the gebirgsjägers not sacrificed themselves to disrupt the attack.) That would seem to seal the fate of these two units. There is no escape. An air attack by Rychakov’s bombers inflicted losses on Heißmeyer’s division, but by then it was too late.

    9 days after the attack on Tokmak started with such promise, General Bader stopped the slaughter of his men. 6.ID had four divisions ranged against it and had lost nearly 2,000 men. With no likelihood of success, the unit was pulled back and ordered to move to Novy Buh for rest and recuperation. General von Kluge has sent an urgent message to OB Sud, which was passed on to Berlin, requesting more troops. He cannot maintain a push east with his current force.

    In the meantime, late on 14th 26.ID replaced 6.ID in attacking Tokmak. Haase found just two divisions opposing him, but is still not prepared to state his men can take the province.

    Even with his men stretched to the limit, von Kluge is not abandoning hope of an easy crossing of the Dniepr. His generals are under instructions to keep probing and Peschel though he had found a gap in Dinprodzerzhynsk. Soon after midnight he gave the order for a river crossing to commence. It was soon apparent that our information was faulty. Flares raced skyward from the Russian side and heavy machine guns tore into the flimsy boats. 198.ID was lucky to escape with just 200 dead. The Soviets had two full infantry divisions holding the far shore. We have heard a lot recently about “maskirovka”, some sort of military deception technique. Could this have been our first lesson?

    General von Kluge must be wondering what he has to do to maintain a bridgehead across the Dniepr. Volkmann’s push into Vesele had looked as though it might be the breakthrough ÖSterreich Army had been waiting for. 1st Gebirgsjäger had easily made the crossing and evicted the defenders. Supplies had started to flow across the river. Then Popov had unleashed 14 Tankovaya. Reeling from the shock, the gebirgsjägers suddenlt found another two rifle divisions had joined the Russian armour. Von Kluge had nothing in reserve and after a week he reluctantly acceded to Volkmann’s requests and allowed the survivors to cross back to the western bank. Nearly 1,300 men did not return.


    Army of the Ukraine (Höhne)


    After just a few days, Höhne is to get his third division. The newly formed 74.ID (mot) (General Pfeiffer) has been railed to Odessa to join the two schwere panzer divisions of 2nd schwere Panzerkorps. This division is the new model to accommodate our dwindling manpower, with just two infantry regiments, an armoured car regiment (Sdkfz 231 (8 rad)) and a self-propelled artillery brigade (Sturmpanzer 38(t) “Grille”). But the core of the panzerkorps is the four schwere panzer regiments, some of which of still equipped with the old VK 3601(H) vehicles. The new Pzkpfw VI (i) “Tiger” replacements are being rushed to the units, but production is still slow. It had been hoped to hold the schwere divisions back for a month, but the Soviet counter-attacks had made that impossible.



    Manufacture of our new heavy tanks is slow and expensive.


    Probably Höhne expected that he would be given some time to organise his new command, but the pressure on the Österreich Army has been too much. Every unit is needed. On the 17th the Army of the Ukraine was ordered to start moving to the front, with their ultimate objective set as Mariupol. Within days the three divisions that make up this “army” will be in action.




    Finalised Battles for the period 10th to 18th September 1941

    Olenino: 2,253 (38,570): 1,533 (37,796)
    Novhorod – Siverskyi: 1,076 (39,973): 1,041 (15,914)
    Zolotuhino: 198 (19,998): 539 (9,998)
    3rd Afimino: 57 (10,000): 92 (9,999)
    Krasnodom: 188 (11,814): 27 (32,988) (Italian)
    El’tsy: 1,276 (19,987): 899 (16,641)
    Pevlevo: 422 (9,995): 683 (18,227)
    Käkisalmi: 40 (9,999): 65 (8,999)
    Novooleksiyivka: 242 (9,905): 453 (18,967)
    Sinezerki: 79 (5,997): 30 (28,993) (Italian)
    Sel’co: 244 (18,921): 674 (14,917)
    Zukovka: 183 (5,994): 84 (32,325) (Hungarian)
    Scrigny: 23 (21,990): 101 (8,999) (Italian)
    Uneca: 786 (18,684): 539 (9,998)
    Klincy: 1,578 (36,699): 1,314 (94,830)
    2nd Scigny: 328 (21,967): 850 (34,732)
    Tokmak: 1,982 (9,689): 979 (33,986)
    2nd Uneca: 113 (9,939): 93 (9,626)
    2nd Krasnodom: 73 (6,000): 13 (15,998)
    Barjatino: 775 (21,985): 364 (15,917)
    2nd Zukovka: 253 (17,988): 604 (7,999) (123 Hungarian)
    Chutove: 25 (6,000): 5 (7,995) (Italian)
    Barsuki: 87 (9,995): 189 (14,995)
    3rd Uneca: 233 (19,490): 481 (21,646)
    Butchino: 854 (21,983): 1,686 (16,996)
    Bryanskaja: 1,328 (65,978): 1,784 (89,528)
    Djat’kovo: 2 (11,636): 407 (13,932)
    Dinprodzerzhynsk: 211 (9,992): 39 (15,997)
    2nd Sinerzeki: 187 (15,986): 117 (7,999) (Italian)
    Okhtyrka: 225 (24,438): 160 (15,997) (40 Italian)
    Vesele: 1,273 (10,000): 660 (28,438)
    2nd Djat’kovo: 215 (11,825): 494 (7,863)
    Hiitova: 51 (9991): 92 (8,962)
    Kirov: 11 (5,996): 8 (7,488) (Hungarian)
    Vasilevka: 1,029 (19,993): 2,000 (31,442)


    Total Battle Casualties for the period 10th to 18th September 1941

    Hungarian: 317
    Italian: 517
    German: 17,041
    Russian: 19,099

    Prior Battle Casualties

    Hungarian: 771
    Italian: 3,173
    German: 316,064
    Russian: 342,210

    Total Battle Casualties to date

    Hungarian: 317 + 771 = 1,088
    Italian: 517 + 3,173 = 3,690
    German: 17,041 + 316,064 = 333,105
    Russian: 19,099 + 342,210 = 361,309


    Bombing Summary for the period 10th to 18th September

    Luftwaffe

    Vershinin and 2 and 24 IAD were prevented from attacking Wever over Torzok by Waber with 6 Messerschmitt geschwader. Later (on the 17th) Zhavaronkov’s MiG 1s were able to destroy more than 30 of our bombers and 20 of their escorting Focke-Wulf 190s, but 8th Kampffliegerkorps shrugged off the losses and continued to punish Simoniak’s troops.



    Waber achieves air superiority over Torzok


    Käkisalmi: Wever with 8th Kampffliegerkorps: 147, 234 (381)
    Tokmak: Dörstling with 6th Kampffliegerkorps: 163, 232, 131, 181, 208, 149, 212, 222, 188, 114, 213, 243, 146 (2,402)
    Torzok: Wever with 8th Kampffliegerkorps: 185, 315, 119, 269, 313, 151, 126, 291, 189, 270, 344, 196, 224, 293, 16, 211, 66, 205 (3,783)
    Zukovka: Grauert with 4th Kampffliegerkorps: 178, 286, 245 (709)
    Zukovka: Sperrle with 1st Kampffliegerkorps: 141
    Melitopol: Dörstling with 6th Kampffliegerkorps: 82, 153, 47 (282)
    Bryanskaja: Hoffman von Waldau with 4th Schlachtfliegerkorps: 129, 206, 90 (425)
    Perlevo: Kitzinger with 3rd Kampffliegerkorps: 335, 246 (581)
    Fokino: Grauert with 4th Kampffliegerkorps: 210, 239, 190 (639)
    Fokino: Sperrle with 1st Kampffleigerkorps: 172, 364, 371 (907)
    Deniskowicze: Rapaich with 1st Légihadsereg: 142, 123, 72 (337)
    Selizhavoro: Kitzinger with 3rd Kampffliegerkorps: 326, 353, 234 (913)
    Verkhopol’e: Schwartzkopff with 2nd Kampffliegerkorps: 175, 240, 120 (535)
    Novhorod Sivenskiyi: Schwartzkopff with 2nd Kampffliegerkorps: 166
    Novhorod Sivenskiyi: Kesselring with 1st Schlachtfleigerkorps: 163, 212, 143, 158 (676)
    Vasilevska: Sperrle with 1st Kampffliegerkorps: 146, 356, 388 (890)
    Selizhavoro: Weise with 5th Schlachtfliegerkorps: 96, 172, 185 (453)
    Selizhavoro: Kitzinger with 3rd Kampffliegerkorps: 405, 405, 215 (1,025)
    Pochep: Kesselring with 1st Schlachtfliegerkorps: 150, 381, 310, 127 (968)
    Viaz’ma: Grauert with 4th Kampffliegerkorps: 280, 359, 273 (912)



    VVS

    An attempt by Novikov to launch his bombers from Dnipropetrovsk airbase was aborted before it had really begun. Christiansen’s Messerschmitts dominated the skies around the city and after heavy losses the Russian aircraft stayed on the ground. Christiansen could not prevent Rychakov bombing Novooleksiyivka, but was able to stop another bombing mission over Pryluky. Rychakov was nothing if not persistent and for his next effort he had 300 fighters as escorts. All to no avail, as Waber was ready with nearly 900 aircraft. No bombers made it through the screen.

    By the time Christiansen again met him over Novooleksiyivka, Rychakov had lost 25% of his bombers, and was not able to penetrate the cloud of interceptors (which included the Italian “Saettas”).

    Further north, Waber blocked Smushkevich as 25 and 77 ShAD flew over Betlica, hoping to damage von Sponeck’s 4th Panzer. Once again they were turned back – Waber had brought 1,200 fighters with him. Even the confusion generated by having so many aircraft under the control of one man could not save the Soviet bombers.

    Berzarin and two tactical bomber regiments were turned back near Kharkov. It is not known whether their intended target was Österreich Army or the Italians, but Fisser and 9 Jagdgeschwader did not wait to find out.

    Taken by surprise, the Luftwaffe was not able to prevent Thor completing his mission to bomb General Phleps’ men in Zolothino. When Thor pushed his luck and attempted a repeat dose, Fisser was ready with “JS Bach”, “Beethoven” and “Bruch”. The antiquated Ar-2 dive bombers were no match for the Bf 109F interceptors of 7th Jagdfliegerkorps . Needless to say, Phleps was not bothered again.

    The only other attempt by the VVS to interfere with our advance also had initial success, but only a handful of bombs were dropped on Mykolayvik before Christiansen arrived with his Messerschmitts and hundreds of Italian fighters. That was all that was needed to convince Skripko to abandon any further efforts.



    The joint Luftwaffe/Regia Aeronautica force was able to quickly dispose of the VVS


    Novooleksiyivka: Rychakov with 1 and 2 BAD: 146
    Zolotuhino: Thor with 2 and 11 ShAD: 71
    Mykolayvik: Skripko with 10 and 72 ShAD: 17


    Total Bombing Casualties for the period 10th to 18th September 1941

    Hungarian: Nil
    Italian: Nil
    German: 234
    Russian: 17,125

    Prior Bombing Casualties

    Hungarian: 128
    Italian: Nil
    German: 4,084
    Russian: 227,846

    Total Bombing Casualties to date

    Hungarian: Nil + 128 = 128
    Italian: Nil + Nil = Nil
    German: 234 + 4,084 = 4,318
    Russian: 17,125 + 227,846 = 244,971


    East Front at end of 18th September 1941



    Total East Front Casualties for the period 10th to 18th September 1941

    Hungarian: 317 + Nil = 317
    Italian: 517 + Nil = 517
    German: 17,041 + 234 = 17,275
    Russian: 19,099 + 17,125 = 36,224

    Prior East Front Casualties

    Hungarian: 889
    Italian: 3,173
    German: 320,148
    Russian: 570,056

    Total East Front Casualties to date

    Hungarian: 317 + 889 = 1,206
    Italian: 517 + 3,173 = 3,690
    German: 17,275 + 320,148 = 337,423
    Russian: 36,224 + 570,056 = 606,280
    Last edited by Uriah; 08-12-2011 at 12:13.

  19. #2779
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    Still, good progress overall. Although Ukraine Army might be thrown into battle somewhat prematurely, and I would have preferred to have them attached to Österreich army until you have sufficient forces to actually raise a new army. Hopefully the forces which have been involved in the cleaning up operations behind the front will be available at the front shortly, they are certainly needed there. May be another week or two, but then they should take their places next to their comrades.

    Any idea what Finland is up to? They'd be a welcome addition to your forces, adding another ~20-30 divisions to the fight.

    Have your thought about releasing the Baltic countries? I think they don't add much of anything but it'd relief your from having to guard the areas.

  20. #2780
    Still going moderately forward and with a new supply source at Leningrad (if you have a convoy there) the northern attack can go on for a time yet. A bit of the same can be done in Sevastopol if you got a Mediterranean port that is connected to Germany.
    I wonder why the Hungarians haven't finished off the Pripet pocket yet, perhaps they need a bit of Luftwaffe support?

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