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Thread: Germany, 1936: Cabals from the Meuse to the Memel

  1. #41
    Old Guard Miihkali's Avatar
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    Gamey idea: push all the Republican units to Almeria, so when Nationalists annex the Republic they will get plenty of units from them. Nationalists may be an important ally later during the war.
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  2. #42
    Evil Lawyer K W's Avatar
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    Part XIII: September 1936




    We will now make the first steps that are necessary in order to encircle the Republican capital -- I don't expect it to be a devastating encirclement, as the Republican divisions in Madrid are already moving out of the province. I would be actually surprised if I manage to encircle more than one or two divisions, but as we have to capture all provinces in Spain except Almeria either way, we can at least try to deliver at least a minor blow to the Republicans enroute. We have only one light armor division, after all. So the first step is to resume the attack on Segovia, but this time in a serious attempt -- Segovia is like a thorn in the side, as it borders four of our provinces that would otherwise require guard divisions. The NAF who are still trapped in Vigo due to low infrastructure will at some point join the battle in Segovia, and as we are anticipating nothing less but a clear victory in Segovia, we already started moving the 1st Infantry Corps in Salamanca to Plasencia. In the south, we have won the battle of Albacete; the unification of the southern and northern pocket is imminent.



    Even without the support of the NAF everything points to a victory in Segovia, as we attack with thirteen divisions from Burgos and Guadalajara. Franco has now entered Albacete, which gives us finally a coherent land mass and splits the Republicans in two, although the result is not as devastating as we expected in the first place, as the Almeria-Murcia-Alicante pocket contains only one Republican division. Besides, the enemy is moving from Sevilla into the undefended province of Malaga and will probably cut our port in Cadiz off. We will attack, as soon as the troops have reorganized, the enemy division in Murcia -- and hope that they will retreat to Alicante, and not to Almeria, as a retreat to Almeria would enable them to escape as soon as Malaga is captured. It would have been probably wiser to leave one division in the south, but as I expected that the organisation of the SAF would remain low as they were constantly moving, I decided against it, fearing defeat in a one vs. one battle, especially because the Republicans still have at least one tank division and could have started a surprise attack.



    And here comes our plan for the encirclement of Madrid. It's actually quite simple: The capture of Plasencia and Segovia was already ordered and is underway, and now that our troops without missions have reorganized, only Toledo and Tarancon remain to be captured to cut Madrid off. If everything goes well, both provinces will be occupied by six divisions, respectively. I don't know if the extremely gamey strategy of cutting the capital off works in DH, so that the enemy can't supply all units outside the capital and is forced to deploy all produced units in the encircled capital (I hope they fixed it), but as we are humans and have therefore numerous advantages about an AI anyway, we won't use cheap tricks -- we will remain chivalrous and occupy the capital as soon as the encirclement is finished and all our units reorganized.

    While I'm thinking about cheap tricks something else comes into my mind. Italy still couldn't annex Abyssinia, September 1936. Is there actually a thread for this? I bet that some folks have probably seen the Italians retreating fighting til 1937 in Ethiopia, and if I have luck, my Italians will be able to compete.



    The Republicans spread their troops in Madrid to adjacent provinces, which is of course unfortunate, as we were about to occupy Tarancon. They will probably move even more divisions to this province, but I do not intend to retreat, as our corps from Zaragoza and Teruel will arrive very soon in Guadalajara and start attacking Tarancon, and as soon as the battle of Segovia is over, I will be able to use another three corps to support the offense in Tarancon. Eventually we had to fight some things out.



    In Germany, the Dutch steal Mechanized Agriculture from us. The tech boosts manpower and is from 1928, so I doubt that the Dutch will gain even a minor advantage from it. My bank account is still too empty to improve my intelligence level, and I will not over-produce consumer goods more than necessary, as I'm still not able to produce all units I put in the production queue in March '36. I fear that I will have, quite historically, to wait for the Anschluss before I get some forexes. But the year is still 1936, so it's not that tragical. The real spy invasion will not start until next year.
    Last edited by K W; 27-04-2011 at 00:28.
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  4. #44
    Evil Lawyer K W's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miihkali View Post
    Gamey idea: push all the Republican units to Almeria, so when Nationalists annex the Republic they will get plenty of units from them. Nationalists may be an important ally later during the war.
    Are you sure that the Nationalists inherit the Republican units? I never played the Civil War in such detail, so I don't know.

    But besides, I don't think that I would try such a strategy, even if the Nationalists indeed get all remaining Republican military after their annexation. Although I haven't explicitly banned gamey tactics, I'm very reluctant to use them for the aforementioned reasons, especially as we are in no emergency situation that would justify such a step.
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  5. #45
    Evil Lawyer K W's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soulking View Post
    Wait, I'm a little confused. Are you military controlling Nationalist Spain? and are they in your Alliance?
    I think you missed this:

    Quote Originally Posted by K W View Post


    I decide to take direct control of the Nationalist army. I would normally not do such a thing, as it is combined with an unnecessary belligerence hit and will also throw us into red numbers (we have 300 currency units, while the direct interventions costs 400). On the other side, the perspective of a Republican Spain that sits at my south-west flank would be horrible; as from my experience the Republicans sometimes join the Allies. I already try to create a stable framework for my strategy by avoiding an alliance with Italy, thus abstaining from any adventures in the Balkans, and to complete this framework a Nationalist Spain is a necessity.
    DH offers to major countries, like Germany, now the option to influence things a little bit more if the country is controlled by a human. A human Germany can, for example, take military control of Nationalist Spain in the Spanish Civil War or of Finland in the Winter War. I'm not allied with Nationalist Spain, I simply control their army, navy and air force.
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  6. #46
    Old Guard Miihkali's Avatar
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    Yeah. Some nations are set to have same national ID (or something like that), and when they annex each other they get the troops of the annexed nation. This is useful for example when Germany annexes Austria, but it works even if the nation is annexed through war (game doesn't make difference between annexations through war or events.
    Mikael "Miihkali" Tuominen — Darkest Hour - a 1914-1963 grand strategy game

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  7. #47
    Evil Lawyer K W's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miihkali View Post
    Yeah. Some nations are set to have same national ID (or something like that), and when they annex each other they get the troops of the annexed nation. This is useful for example when Germany annexes Austria, but it works even if the nation is annexed through war (game doesn't make difference between annexations through war or events.
    I always thought that it had to do something with the inherit command in some events that spared the units from destruction. Thanks for the enlightment.
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  8. #48
    Old Guard Miihkali's Avatar
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    I am not sure but I think that inherit command just triggers normal annexation.
    Mikael "Miihkali" Tuominen — Darkest Hour - a 1914-1963 grand strategy game

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  9. #49
    Lt. General soulking's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by K W View Post
    I think you missed this:

    DH offers to major countries, like Germany, now the option to influence things a little bit more if the country is controlled by a human. A human Germany can, for example, take military control of Nationalist Spain in the Spanish Civil War or of Finland in the Winter War. I'm not allied with Nationalist Spain, I simply control their army, navy and air force.
    My bad. I don't have DH so I wouldn't know the first thing about it other than it's similar to HoI2.

    Good luck on a Madrid-Segovia pocket!

  10. #50
    Quote Originally Posted by Miihkali View Post
    I am not sure but I think that inherit command just triggers normal annexation.
    Actually, DH introduced a new parameter to the inherit command so that now it is possible to specify in evenst if units (+ production queue) are inherited:
    type = inherit which = [tag] value = 1/0(default) # This country inherits country Tag, [-1] for random. Value = 1 : country will receive all units and production queue too

  11. #51
    Evil Lawyer K W's Avatar
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    Part XIV: September – October 1936




    The battle of Tarancon is concluded with a victory once the two additional army corps arrive in Guadalajara and join the battle. During the next several hours the Republicans will continue to send their relief forces to Tarancon, but as they always arrive there as single divisions, they are immediatly defeated and forced to retreat.

    In Germany, we finish the research of 1935 submarine torpedoes. The Kriegsmarinewerft will continue with the research of 1936 Troopships -- hopefully the last rather useless tech we research, before the next year will begin eventually and allow us to choose from a more useful pallet of technologies.



    The NAF reach Leon and will join the still ongoing battle in Segovia. In the south, we succeeded in defeating the Republicans in Murcia -- but we failed with our attempted encirclement, because the Republicans unfortunately decided to retreat to Almeria, which will soon have a direct connection to the Republican mainland through Malaga, that is about to be taken by Republican forces from Sevilla.

    By the way, I notice that the organisation of my interceptor wings has been finally restored, but unfortunately they still need reinforcements and the bombers are lightyears away from a sufficient organization level. So still no air superiority for the Nationalists, even if we manage to seize some additional Republican airports we won't see any of our planes in the skies.



    On 6th of October we capture Tarancon. This leaves us with only one province left to close the pocket; Toledo. I somewhat become ecstatic, look how many Republican divisions are standing at the edge of an abyss! If we would close the pocket in time, we would destroy thirteen Republican divisions. It is an opportunity to good to pass, although against better judgement -- Toledo is guarded by three Republican divisions and is a hill province, providing the enemy with a nasty combat bonus. Although we can initiate the attack with nine divisions from Plasencia and Tarancon and will receive six additional divisions that are enroute to Toledo later for our assault, we are highly disorganized. The Republicans are already pulling out of Madrid, so we don't have enough time to replenish our organization. Whatever, we can't just sit there and do nothing -- I order my forces to attack Toledo as soon as the disorganization freeze expires. We also start a delay attack on Madrid with our corps in Guadalajara, which until now supported the battle of Segovia, that ended with a Nationalist victory, so as to prevent an outbreak from the pocket and any reinforcements for the three enemy divisions in Toledo. The battle in Madrid will also cause the destruction of the three retreating divisions in Segovia, as provinces with ongoing battles will count as hostile provinces -- I think, because otherwise I couldn't explain their subsequent disappearance (if anyone has deeper knowledge about this topic, I would be glad to listen). It is now all or nothing!



    It seems to become nothing. The OKW is shocked as some days later -- the battle progress was indicating a Nationalist victory in Toledo -- three additional divisions appeared from literally nowhere. As soon as the night bonus for the defenders kicks in, the odds start to favour the Republicans. There can be only one explanation for this failure: The Republicans must have stationed some additional divisions in their hinterland, and waited for an opportunity to surprise us when we attacked a province with forces that were just enough to barely win the battle. I'm especially furious about this fact, because if I had been able to use my air force, I could have averted this disaster. It's only a scrap of comfort that the three divisions in Segovia indeed disappear.

    The situation looks grave -- at least tactical. The overall situation is still excellent and we will certainly defeat the Republicans in some months, but a failure to close the Madrid pocket now would result in a major setback for our plans and allow the Republicans, for the first time during the Civil War, to stabilize their front. This is the actual reason why we have progressed so comparatively fast with our outdated infantry, in provinces with lousy infrastructure and rough terrain: The Republicans never managed to seriously guard all their provinces, we were free to enter their lands as we pleased. On the tactical front it looks that we will lose the battle of Toledo, if the reinforcements don't arrive in time -- they are still days away, in Valencia or even Castellon de la Plana, and I don't know how long I can hold out in Toledo. The battle of Madrid is also about to be lost, too, but as it was intentionally only a delay attack where the Republicans even outnumber us, I'm not surprised. Toledo and Madrid are obviously not in range of my still disorganized and damaged air force stationed on the Balearic Islands, but I guess that they would be destroyed anyway by the Republican interceptors and the AA brigades before they could do any damage at all.

    I just hope that my foces can hold out for some days longer on their own. I ordered the NAF to abort the occupation of Segovia, instead they will move to Plasencia and try to rescue Toledo -- if they arrive in time. Generally spoken, the lack of organization is really a nuisance and was, until now, responsible for almost all of our failures. My troops couldn't just reorganize because I always moved them around, so I guess it is also somewhat my own fault. On the other hand, this strategy awarded us with a vast amount of provinces, so I think that we at least got something in exchange for our low organization. However, I doubt that I will be able to pursue this kind of downgraded Blitzkrieg strategy any longer. We have to think of other ways to defeat the Republicans.



    Franco, however, manages to raise spirits in this suboptimal situation. Apparently we will get now a new opportunity to encircle some units in the south -- a Republican militia division appears in Murcia from nowhere (I still can't see Almeria, although I control adjacent provines -- I need to have military units there to see something) and is quickly defeated by the SAF. The militia retreats to Alicante, so we will destroy it very soon.
    Last edited by K W; 27-04-2011 at 01:03.
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  12. #52
    Evil Lawyer K W's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ^_AC_^ View Post
    Actually, DH introduced a new parameter to the inherit command so that now it is possible to specify in evenst if units (+ production queue) are inherited:
    Thanks for the clarification.

    Quote Originally Posted by soulking View Post
    My bad. I don't have DH so I wouldn't know the first thing about it other than it's similar to HoI2.
    You should consider buying it, it's really a good game, and as soon as it is polished by some more patches, it will be truly outstanding. Or you could try to get it through the Darkest Week if you don't wish to spend money on it.

    Quote Originally Posted by soulking View Post
    Good luck on a Madrid-Segovia pocket!


    Well, I attribute the continued absence of luck as a clearly positive sign -- only the underdogs require luck to succeed, after all.
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  13. #53
    Evil Lawyer K W's Avatar
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    Part XV: Change of Strategy




    After four days of heavy battle, it becomes too much -- the Republicans defeat us in Toledo, but fortunately don't start a direct counter attack on our totally disorganized forces in Tarancon. Even now our relief forces are still some days away. As there is no point in delaying the enemy forces in Madrid longer with the lost battle of Toledo, I also stop the attack on the Spanish capital preliminary, which leaves my forces in Guadalajara at least with a small amount of organisation. I would have nearly forgotten about the events in the south -- Malaga was captured, hence our port in Cadiz is cut off. On the other hand, Franco seizes Murcia and now moves to Alicante, where he will destroy one Republican milita division.

    This was a very harsh caesura indeed. The Republicans can now evacuate their divisions from the pocket, and I'm condemned to do nothing in the meantime due to my embarassing low organisation. It would be foolish to immediatly get back to business as usual after such a failure. We have to take a closer look at the current state of affairs and need to readjust our overall strategy in order to achieve a satisfying success. Although I don't have to fear any kind of defeat in the Spanish Civil War, I'm definitely not longing for a sloppy conclusion of this conflict. Such habits could prove to be devastating when we will later wage war against the Allies and the Soviets on a much larger scale.

    Strategical Situation

    The Republicans have suffered major defeats, especially during the first two stages of the Spanish Civil War (SCW). As of 0900 October 13, 1936 the Republicans control twelve provinces with eleven victory points, all in continental Spain, which is really poor, considering that they started with twenty-eight provinces. We expect, however, due to the recent events some obvious border changes: We will seize Segovia and Alicante shortly, while the Republicans will probably be able to reconquer Cadiz, Granada and Jaen. This will increase the amount of Republican provinces to thirteen and the Republican victory points to twelve. The Republicans still control the Spanish capital of Madrid. The Republicans have roughly five Base IC and are utilising four points of it, although this value may differ as IC is constantly destroyed and reconstructed due to the repetitive border changes. German intelligence estimates the size of the Republican army to be around twenty-three infantry divisions and two armor divisions, which is, according to our encounters during battles with the Republicans, an accurate evaluation. The reports on Republican navy are not reliable; the numbers are way too low and would only make sense if some form of self-scuttling occured, as our navy failed to destroy the Republican fleet. The numbers regarding the air force are somewhat accurate, the overall air force volume is given with eight squadrons, which is probably correct, although the distribution is, according to our direct knowledge, not two interceptors and six bombers but four interceptors and four bombers.

    The Nationalists have scored decisive victories and are about to win the SCW. Starting with just twelve provinces in continental Spain, we managed to more than double this number to twenty-six. Nationalist Spain controls nine base and eight effective IC. We have thirty-eight land divisions at our disposal, the vast majority is infantry, although we also have a small number of militia, and a single HQ, light armor and motorized infantry unit, respectively. Our navy consists of nine small ships and five transports, and our air force encompasses two interceptors, two tactical bombers and one CAS.

    As earlier battles have shown, we can not claim to be technologically superior any longer; it appears that we have only the advantage of numbers on our side. The Republicans have showed a medium or even relatively high organization in the past, while nearly all of our land forces are highly disorganized and suffered recently the first major defeat during an attempt to encircle a massive amount of enemy units. The Republicans possess total Air Superiority, as their air force outnumbers ours and we still need reinforcements for our interceptors and more organization for our bombers, that will be again lowered should we make the necessary step and rebase our airforce to the Spanish mainland in order to contest the Republican air force.

    Tactical Situation

    In principle, we can now speak of a Nationalist Northern Spain and a Republican Southern Spain. Our forces are currently guarding the majority of our threatened border provinces, and due to the confinement of the Republicans to twelve or thirteen provinces they will soon be able to form a stabilized front line, too. We expect, however, that the Republicans will slowly retreat a good chunk of their forces from Madrid, as the city is under a constant threat of encirclement. Should there be only a tiny guard in Madrid left, it would be probably better to simply seize the city and abandon any plans for encirclement.

    We are unable to undertake any major offensives for the rest of October, as we would risk destruction and defeat at the hands of the Republicans due to our non-existant organisation. The organisation has literally fallen to zero in some corps, thus making even movement between friendly provinces impossible due to terribly slow speed. We will, however, destroy at least one enemy division in Alicante, as the Southern Action Forces under the command of General Franco are still operational and our only guarantee in case of a large-scale Republican counter-attack. Our fleet in Cadiz is under persistent threat from enemy forces, as the province is cut-off and could be easily seized by the Republicans at any time, thus making constant supervision and vigilance mandatory. Our air force remains inoperable until further notice.

    The Republicans are probably exhausted from their recent victories, and too occupied in finally regrouping their units into a coherent front line, so we probably won't see any offensives, especially as they will hesitate to attack us if we are numerically superior, which is almost everywhere the case, except for Toledo, but these units are, as already mentioned, in no shape to attack us as they recently fought against our units.

    Until now we pursued an aggressive strategy of maneuver warfare which aimed at taking as much provinces as possible without allowing the enemy to inflict any bigger casualties. We succeeded til this point, but as the enemy has finally recovered from the initial trauma, we either have to prevent him from taking up a viable defensive position or accept larger and longer battles, with higher casualties, to slowly push the Republicans back to the seas.

    We will try a combination of both strategies: The Republicans should be distracted, as in the begining of our campaign, by an amphibous landing of one army corps in the southern hinterland so that they will be forced to weaken their defenses at the main front. At the same time, we will try to resume our encirclement of Madrid, should a sufficient number of units still occupy the city to make it worth enough, but this time with clearly superior forces, and we will participate in some other major battles if this should become necessary in order to penetrate the front line. We will, however, only attack if we can win and abandon the idea of Blitzkrieg warfare. Our main problem, organization, will be solved by giving our forces more time to reorganize. As we also have a higher industrial base now, we have the luxury to postpone some offensives in order to enhance our odds significantly. New major offensives will therefore start in November at the earliest.

    Revised Objectives

    Due to the results of our assessments above we are forced to revise our initial objectives for the third stage of Operation Gisela. Stage III and Stage IV were approximate formulations anyway, as we couldn't provide such exact predictions to name more precise objectives.

    Stage III
    • Capture of Madrid. If more than three Republican divisions will stay behind in Madrid, capture through encirclement.
    • Amphibious invasion of the Republican's hinterland by at least one army corps. Beginning of renewed harassment, resulting in the return of the expeditionary forces to the Nationalist mainland by unifying the two pockets at best.
    • Destruction of the Alicante pocket.
    • Rebasing of the Nationalist air force to the Spanish mainland.
    • Full organization replenishment of all Nationalist forces.
    • Cutting up of the Republican's mainland into two seperate pockets, e.g. through Jaen-Cordoba-Huelva or through the amphibous assault. Destruction of one pocket.
    Stage IV
    • Destruction of the remaining pocket and annexation of Republican Spain.
    Last edited by K W; 27-04-2011 at 00:29.
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  14. #54
    Lt. General soulking's Avatar
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    Well, I'm already participating in a writing contest, so if I'm one of the winners, then I might purchase the game.

    Back on topic. It sucks that the Republican's were able to escape - so close, yet no cigar. If it's feasible, you could do an amphibious landing at Sevilla, thereby trapping 3 Republican divisions in a southern pocket. As well, it might be impossible, but having a division in Granada might be a good investment as it is one of the few provinces to house a fort.

  15. #55
    Evil Lawyer K W's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soulking View Post
    Back on topic. It sucks that the Republican's were able to escape - so close, yet no cigar. If it's feasible, you could do an amphibious landing at Sevilla, thereby trapping 3 Republican divisions in a southern pocket. As well, it might be impossible, but having a division in Granada might be a good investment as it is one of the few provinces to house a fort.
    I'm afraid that the capture of Granada by the Republicans is inevitable, I'm just too slow and too far away to protect the province. However, I think that it's not that fatal, as the land fort consists of only two levels and will need reconstruction after its capture anyway.

    Unfortunately Sevilla has no beaches for an amphibious landing. There are only two provinces I can invade from sea: Huelva and Cadiz. I would be already very relieved if only one of this provinces is unguarded. Let's see ...
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  16. #56
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    Part XVI: October – November 1936




    Just one day after the defeats in Toledo and Madrid, the Republicans use the situation to their advantage and start the reconquest of the Nationalist controlled south. A Republican militia division from Sevilla is already marching into the province of Cadiz. Our whole navy is stationed in the port there, so the Nationalist Central Command sends orders to Admiral Cervera Valderrama to evacuate the Nationalist Fleet to Tarragona.



    The organization of the NAF has dropped to zero, making any movement of the corps painfully slow. We therefore decide to revise our movement orders: The NAF will just stop where they are, which is Leon, and they are allowed to replenish their organization. We will allow the reinforcement divisions that were planned for the Battle of Toledo to finish their mission and move to Tarancon. Tarancon itself will be even more reinforced by the movement of the Nationalist Central Command to this province, with one HQ division, as Madrid is still occupied by five divisions, making an encirclement of the city through the capture of Toledo worthwile, and for such an undertaking we need more support in Tarancon. Segovia was finally captured by our five divisions from Burgos, as was Alicante. Franco, however, somehow managed to outrun the Republican divisions that were heading to Alicante, so we order him back to Murcia and will now wait patiently for the Republicans entering Alicante. In return, the Republicans have taken Granada from us.



    A week later the Republicans eventually managed, as predicted, to create a stable front, only Caceres remains unguarded, but Republican divisions from Toledo are already underway. Cadiz and Jaen were also captured by our enemies, but at the same time our units ultimately succeeded in restoring some of their organization. We start the preperations for our amphibious landing in the south, the NAF in Leon under the command of Field Marshal Mola Vidal are dispensable for our main front and therefore ordered to the closest sea province, Oviedo, while the Nationalist Fleet is ordered to leave Tarragona for Cap Penas in order to allow the embarkation of the NAF. In the meantime all reinforcements have arrived in Tarancon, as soon as we reach a sufficient organization level there we will launch the second battle of Toledo with seventeen divisions from Plasencia and Tarancon, while delaying the escape of the five trapped divisions in Madrid by an attack from Segovia and Guadalajara.



    Franco is ready at last to destroy one Republican militia division in Alicante. As soon as he has finished his task and returns to Murcia, we will use him to support the amphibious landing of the NAF in the south. If we have luck, we can launch the encirclement of Madrid and the amphibious invasion at the same time.
    Last edited by K W; 27-04-2011 at 01:03.
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  17. #57
    Second Lieutenant Sharky1510's Avatar
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    So like are you going to influence the Nationalist to join the Axis? or are you bored and just wanna have some action?

  18. #58
    Evil Lawyer K W's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sharky1510 View Post
    So like are you going to influence the Nationalist to join the Axis? or are you bored and just wanna have some action?
    The primary objective is to destroy a potential enemy, Republican Spain. The question of a Spanish-German alliance is mainly a question of money, if I will have sufficient funds to start some diplomatic offensives, I will try to ally with Spain. And yes, some entertainment for my readers and me is also intended, but as you will see shortly, frustration competes also with the entertainment.
    If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear. – George Orwell

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  20. #60
    Do you have any idea what Nat. Spain itself is building? Upgrading, new troops, or just building supplies?
    Any chance of getting more troops from Germany and/or Italy?

    It's a bit dissappointing to see that the Republicans have air supremacy. Where did they get these planes from?

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