Kneel Before Zog!: 1936 Kingdom of Albania
Hello, and welcome to my fourth AAR, FtM 3.05. This one takes its inspiration from a few written by mnplastic, namely ones covering Lithuania and Luxemburg. While I was taking a break from the United Kingdom AAR that I am also currently embroiled in, I looked around the AAR library for countries that weren’t yet represented and might also be in a position where you could actually accomplish something in a game. Luckily for me I needed to look no farther than the one that comes right at the top of the list alphabetically, good old Albania. I already had a quick run-through to see if I could do anything at all that would be worthy of doing an AAR, and I can assure you it is possible, due to some quirks with FtM. No money, no national unity, no industry, no leadership, no officers, and no military units (aside from the free theatre HQ everyone gets), is there a more unlikely candidate for world conquest? All of these issues attracted me to the challenge, and when I saw the name of the head of state, it sealed the deal. Time to get Albania back on the map where it belongs!
King Zog I is a pretty interesting character. A Muslim from birth, he oversaw the independence of Albania from the Ottoman Empire before the first world war and worked hard to try and make it a secular, prosperous country. He might have succeeded if the Great Depression hadn’t placed Albania at Italy’s financial and (later) military mercy. The King escaped just as the Italians were invading with his wife and firstborn son, who had been delivered two days earlier. After the war, the country was liberated by partisans with Communist leanings and strong ties to Yugoslavia; needless to say, the king was not invited back. A referendum in 1997 during the post-Communist era failed to put his son on the throne. An interesting bit of trivia is that blood vendettas have been an Albanian tradition since mediaeval times, and a tradition that the king worked hard to try and abolish. Despite this, he found himself on the receiving end of numerous vendettas and had to spend most of his life heavily guarded. On a visit to Vienna in 1931, one man trying to settle a vendetta took shots at the king and the king replied in kind before being spirited away, making him the last known head of state to exchange gunfire with a potential assassin.* Sounds like our kind of guy. Let’s see if we can do him proud…
Table of Contents
Part One: Lighting the Fuse
Part Two: The War Against Britain
- Chapter One: 1936 - Road to War
- Chapter Two: 1937, Winter & Spring - Puppet Master at Work
- Chapter Three: 1937, Summer & Fall - Foundation of Empire (w/Apologies to Asimov)
- Chapter Four: 1938, Winter & Spring - World at War (Already!?)
Part Three: The War Against China
- Chapter Five: 1938, Summer & Fall - Guests That Won't Go Home
- Chapter Six: 1939, Winter & Spring - Reducing the Kessel
- Chapter Seven: 1939, Summer & Fall - Tough Nut to Crack
- Chapter Eight: 1940, Winter & Spring - You Call This Archaeology?
- Chapter Nine: Summer 1940 through Summer 1941 - Calm Before the Storm
- Chapter Ten: 1941, July - Albania Attacks!
- Chapter Eleven: 1941, Second Half - A Pox on Japan!
Part Four: Wars Against the Majors
- Chapter Twelve: 1942, Winter - Big Trouble in (Indo) China
- Chapter Thirteen: 1942, Spring - Mopping up SE Asia
- Chapter Fourteen: 1942, Summer - Cantonese Takeout
- Chapter Fifteen: Fall 1942 through Winter 1943 - Tie Me Kangaroo Down
- Chapter Sixteen: 1943, Spring - Back to the Grindstone
- Chapter Seventeen: 1943, Summer - Persian Rugs
- Chapter Eighteen: 1943, Fall - Canton? Can-do!
- Chapter Nineteen: 1944, Winter - Diversions From the Main Problem
- Chapter Twenty: 1944, Spring - Moving Like Molasses
- Chapter Twenty-One: 1944, Summer - Still Ain't Over
- Chapter Twenty-Two: 1944, Fall - V-C Day
- Chapter Twenty-Three: 1945, First Half - Tropical Vacations
- Chapter Twenty-Four: 1945, Second Half - Operation ZOG FURY
- Chapter Twenty-Five: 1946, First Half - So Long, and Thanks for all the Fish
* On the American side, President Andrew Jackson was once confronted with an assassin in 1835. The man’s percussion cap pistol failed to fire, but no fool he, he pulled out his backup pistol which also failed to fire. At this point, the President proceeded to beat the man with his cane until he was apprehended. In subsequent testing, the pistols never misfired again and some estimates gave the President’s odds of surviving that attempt at 100,000:1. You can easily imagine that if he had been armed, Jackson wouldn't have been afraid to shoot back.