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Thread: The War that Had to Be Won (1936: The Road to War)

  1. #281
    Pantomacatalasecesionanis ta

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    Chapter thirty-seven. Wuthering Fronts


    With the opening of hostilities of the new war, the majority of combat operations were conducted in Poland and Czechoslovakia. The initial wave of air strikes by the Deutsche Luftstreitkräfte and the first RAF squadrons recently arrived to their bases on the Continent were giving hell to the Communist armies. In Poland, the Polish forces that covered the border were already disintegrating after a few hours of relentless shelling and constant Air attacks and forced fall back. In some areas an orderly retreat was carried out by the defeat but in other it turned into a rout, with some complete divisions becoming a disorganized mob of men and machines fleeing east and thus blocking the arrival of Soviet and Polish reinforcements and becoming easy preys for the Junkers Ju 87 Stukas and Fairey Battles (1) that circled the battlefield. In some places, however, some isolated small units that ranges from single companies to whole regiments offered fanatical resistance to the German armored spearheads, hurting them until they were obliterated. In the air the small but determined Polish Air Force was annhilated even before the Soviet Air Force could reinforce her.



    In Warsaw the Polish Government had issued a call for volunteers and turned the Soviet war of aggression into an unprovoked German attack which galvanized the Polish population. The Polskie Radio Spółka Akcyjna (PRSA; Poland's national publicly funded radio broadcasting organization) kept informing the population of the coward German invasion (which, by some uncanny dirty Capitalist trick kept advancing past the border defenses in spite of being defeated over and over by the glorious and corageous forces of the Proletariat, according to the PRSA's speakers) and calling for every citizen to present himself into the recruitment offices and militia training centres, which were already overflown with volunteers and reservists.



    Meanwhile, a few Soviet submarines at sea were prowling on lone allied merchantmen, who were already steaming towards Allied ports. By the end of the week, however, those submarines would lay on the bottom of the ocean or would be back at their bases at Kola Peninsula. Meanwhile, the Nordsee-Schlacht-Gruppe salied through the waters of the Heligoland Bight waiting for the arrival of the Royal Navy. The groups commander, Konteradmiral Otto Ciliax, was being constantly reminded by the Oberbefehlshaber der Marine, Grossadmiral Erich Raeder, that the Kaiser wouldn't take lightly any Soviet warship sailing into the North Sea (2), even if the recce birds of the Luftstreitkräfte had shown that, apparently, the Red Banner Baltic Fleet had apparently no intento to leave its bases in Kronshtadt. Thus, 2 battleships, 2 cruisers, 2 flotilla leaders, 19 destroyers, 48 MTBs, 65 submarines and other ships remained iddled at the start of the war. (3)



    (1) Who could have guess that the Battle would be of any use in a modern war...
    (2) Ciliax, ol' boy: if the Kaise won't be pleased, imagine how could I feel. And you don't want to hurt me, do you?
    (3) Uncle Joe, let their ships come to me, please. The Hood, the Bisamrck and the Ark Royal would thank thee.


    @The_Unificator: The Wehrwhat? You mean the Kaiserlich Deutsches Heer

    Yes, the Bolshies are massing troops (ReDs EvErYWhErE!!!!) and taking command of the local Polish and Czech armies. Apparently I'm going to face a heck of Reds hordes sooner than later.

    Good, as the King Emperor needs hands to build new roads in India

    @trekaddict: Old habits die hard, you know...

    The Czechs will fall. Period.

    @Sumeragi: Yes, the Hungary Air Force made a daring role in the first days of the war. Then she vanished...

    @Nathan Madien: Indeed. I guess there was no one in the pic to avoid the effects of the blast of the mortar. No one wanted to go from Poland to NY to recover their brains.

    @Razgriz: There were some similar to this one in my Great War AAR, methinks. Or are you thinking about something different?
    Last edited by Kurt_Steiner; 25-03-2012 at 12:07.
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  2. #282
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Well, nobody is perfect.

    The Soviet Naval leaders seem to be smart. So much cool (Hood, Bismarck, Ark Royal) in the same ocean and on the same side would create a rift in space-time which would generate an invincible awesome-shield around the Allied ships.
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  3. #283
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    Watching the Brits and the Germans fight together...it's beautiful in a way.
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  4. #284
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan Madien View Post
    Watching the Brits and the Germans fight together...it's beautiful in a way.
    Why do you think I am physically incapable of denying myself the pleasure of writing an Anglo-German Alliance into my works whenever I can?

    EDIT: The Best Army, the two best Air Forces and the best Navy in the world on the same side....
    Last edited by trekaddict; 25-03-2012 at 21:14.
    "That's right, Adolf. The British are coming." - The Eleventh Doctor
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  5. #285
    Let's hope we have a GLORIOUS naval battle in the Baltic. Drang nach osten!

  6. #286
    Colonel Razgriz 2K9's Avatar
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    I think the Russians are going to be a tough nut to crack, I hope the Royal Air Force and German Imperial Air Force are up to snuff.

  7. #287
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt_Steiner View Post
    @The_Unificator: The Wehrwhat? You mean the Kaiserlich Deutsches Heer

    Yes, the Bolshies are massing troops (ReDs EvErYWhErE!!!!) and taking command of the local Polish and Czech armies. Apparently I'm going to face a heck of Reds hordes sooner than later.
    Good, as the King Emperor needs hands to build new roads in India
    oh, my mistake, old habits die hard, my friend, anyway in spite what they are massing forces in the frontier, ¿you can properly fight them? or ¿you will have to wait for your british reinforcements?, the next battles will be epic i can feel it, good luck and i hope you can crush the enemy

  8. #288
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    He actually does play Britain...

    But to say something else, I do believe he should have Harris talk with those German Lufties.

    "Vat do you mean, our bomberz are tiny and we have no doctrine for them anyway?"
    "That's right, Adolf. The British are coming." - The Eleventh Doctor
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  9. #289
    Pantomacatalasecesionanis ta

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    Chapter thirty-eight: Failed projects


    One of the first lessons taught by the beginning of the war was the great success of the a ground-attack aircrafts. Thus, both sides decided to hurry their respective CAS projects.

    Even before the war started the RAF had started to look for a replacement for the Fairey Battle. Initially the Hurricane was selected for the job, but Fairey offered an alternative: the Fairey P.1/39. Essentially it was a a twin engined Battle proposed to the British Air Ministry as a 'cannon fighter'. Powered by two Merlins which made him at least 50mph faster than the Blenheim, it was not liked by the Treasury, which was getting alarmed at the money being spent on new aircrafts, and so they went for the cheapest option, that is, converting the Hurricane to a fighter/bomber.

    The Fairey P.1/39 would have been armed with 4x Hispano 20 mm cannons on the nose and would have carried 4× 250 lb (110 kg) bombs in an internal bay and another 4 x 250 lb (110 kg) suspended on the wings.

    Thus, preceding for at least forty years the same fate that threatened to happen to the BAe Vulcan B.Mk.3 (1), the Fairey P.1/39 faded into oblivion just to be rescued as one of those "whatifs" that are so loved by our modern day modelists.


    The Fairey P.1/39


    Another plane that followed the path of the P.1/39 was the Belyayev DB-LK, a bomber aircraft designed and built in the USSR in 1939. It was a fairly large aircraft, having a wing span of nearly 71 feet, and was termed a “semi-tailless layout” with a marked forward sweep on the outer wings and a backward sweep at the tips. In common with the Burnellis of the same time period (and the much later P-82), there were two fuselages, each containing a 950hp M-87B radial engine. Although the prototype had provision for two pilots, the production version was intended to have a pilot and a gunner in the left fuselage and a navigator and a gunner/radio operator in the right. Full military equipment was never fitted.

    The DB-LK was designed to carry a fairly impressive armament. The tail section of each fuselage ended in a revolving machine gun turret which rotated around the longitudinal axis of the gondolas. Obviously, the extensive glazing gave the gunners an excellent view, but there was a potential for interference of fire between the rear guns. The aircraft also had twin machine guns mounted in the leading edge of the center section. The aircraft had four bomb bays in the center section, and one behind each main gear well. Each bay could carry a 2,205-pound bomb load. The tall fin carried a high-mounted small stabilizer, a much larger elevator, and the tail wheel.

    The aircraft was not put into production, probably because the war situation for the Soviet Union in 1940 was not very conducive to the development of radical new aircraft, particularly when its production would decrease manufacture of proven types.




    (1) By early 1980s the MoD realised that, with the phasing out of the Vulcan B2, a large hole would be left in the RAF's offensive capability. Thus, as the The B-1B wasn't yet ready for service and the B-52 was as ancient as the outgoing Vulcan, the BMk.3 became the best possible option. And no, it's not the Phase 6 Vulcan, but something different.

    [GAME NOTES: Just in case, let me tell you that the Fairey 1/39 did not exist while the Belyayev DB-LK did fly in early 1940 but it was rejected]



    @trekaddict: Not even the Spanish inquisition...

    @Nathan Madien: Stalin thinks otherwise.

    @Sumeragi: There will be a GLORIOUS naval battle, but perhaps it won't be in the Baltic.

    @trekaddict -2-: I can give some reasons, but there are plenty of under age people around, so...

    @Razgriz 2K9: You just need to tell a German that he cannot do something and to comment to a Briton that somebody is better than him to have them making wonders

    @The_Unificator: The OKW decided that, while the Britons arrived, it would be fun to try on their own to advance a bit. To Warsaw, for instance. And let me remind you all that the French and Italians have joined the war in AngloGerman side. If that's a reason to be happy or to cry is still being debated by historians.

    @trekaddict -3-: Harris had some talking about that with Kesselring and Löhr, methinks. 'Most amussing', Harris said.
    Last edited by Kurt_Steiner; 01-04-2012 at 10:50.
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  10. #290
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    GAH! Even here BAE still poisons the British Aviation Industry!
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  11. #291
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    Those are some nifty models you have posted, Kurt.
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  12. #292
    Pantomacatalasecesionanis ta

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    Chapter thirty-nine: Enters the hero


    That there were few roads that allowed the German Panzers to roll forwards it was bad enough for Feldwebel Günther Schütz, who was beginning to regret having left his Silesian hometown to join the army. The roads were few and small and the Czech army had made a mess of them with plenty antitank obstacles and mines that made Günther's work too interesting for him and his comrades. A thick cloud of smoke hung over the battlefield when Günther's company commander signalled to advance. For the past two hours he and his mates had watched as the enemy lines were pounded by both artillery and the Stukas but now the waiting was over. If the commander was to be trusted, the fearsome barrage and the aerial bombardment had wrecked the enemy, but Günther didn't felt too confident and he prepared himself mentally for the worst as his panzer rolled forward under the cover of a cloud of Heinkel He 111 flying towards their targets.

    As soon as the bombers were beyond sight, the first enemy artillery shells began to land amongst the panzers. Even if the Czech guns could not hope to hit a moving target, Günther hoped that they didn't get lucky and feared that, any moment, a heavy shell would smash against the armoured plaques of his tank. In case the reader hadn't realized, Günther was a slightly pesimist Silesian, although he would have regarded himseld as a grim realist and nothing more. Of course, even if the gunfire was just a nuisance for the panzers -but for some unlucky bugger, Günther acknowledged- the same couldn't be said about the infantry following in his wake.


    The Stuka made an outstanding debut in the first stages of the war when the Stukasgechwader enjoyed the full protection of the cover of the Bf 109s, Hurricanes and Spitfires.


    As the German panzers get closer to the first Czech dugouts, the defenders opened with their anti-tank guns. So much for the element of surprise, thought Günther as his company released a devastating volley against the enemy. For a moments both sides exchanged fire until the CAS overflying the area dived to put an end to Günther distress. By then some few German panzers were burning, but not so much to endanger the Schwerpunkt of the armoured onslaught. Hearing his commander shouting to go forward and to increase its speed, the worried Feldwebel wondered why his CO was so eager to have him killed as his Panzer III crosed the enemy lines among heaps of deformed metal. It seemed as if the plans were working together and the way to Prague was really open.

    Then some Soviet heavy tanks made Günther world to turn upside down. Literally.

    Apparently some Soviet commander had gathered some T-35C heavy tanks (SMK for the Red Army (1)) behind the border defenses fearing that the "damned Krauts" would broke through the fortified line. And he was right. A company of the 91st Tank Battalion of the 20th Heavy Tank Brigade rushed forward and gave the German a nasty surprise when they saw those armored nightmares emerging from the smoke of the battlefield. Then, before Günther had time to wet his pants, the Stukas took care of the enemy juggernauts.


    The SMK, our heroe's nightmare for a short time


    At that pace, Günther thought, his hair would be grey by the time they reached Prague.






    (1) Actually the Red Army built just one SMK -T-35C for the German army- that was damaged by a mine during the Winter War.




    @trekaddict: BAE is not going to be such a nuisance as you may think, trekkie.

    @Nathan Madien: Thank you, Nathan. I found them in the What if section of a modellers forum that I found thorugh good old Trekaddict some months ago and that I came to resuce from time to time (http://www.whatifmodelers.com)
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  13. #293
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Oh dear. Heavy Tanks. At least this time the Tiger and King Tiger will never exist....
    "That's right, Adolf. The British are coming." - The Eleventh Doctor
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  14. #294
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    Interesting timing, Kurt. I just started reading "Panzer Leader" by Heinz Guderian.
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    Karl Popper Fanboy H.Appleby's Avatar
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    The Soviets are about to learn what the Germans did OTL, there is no use in building massive armored land ships if the enemy is just going to drop bombs down yer' tailpipe.
    Obessively following Nathan Madien's excellent AAR: The Presidents: Vietnam War Edition and check out my own AAR: The American Experience 1912-1964

    Unapologetic, Arrogant, Unserious, Uncultured, Warmongering, Pyromaniac American Patriot. (As in I can take a joke about my country as long as you can take a joke or to about yours.) But seriously, I love the whole world, so don't take offense at my occasional bits of exaggerated jingoism, I'm really actually pretty open-minded.

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  16. #296
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Ah yes, and this time these:



    will support the Germans instead of bombing the buggery out of them.
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  17. #297
    Pantomacatalasecesionanis ta

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    Chapter forty: War Cabinet


    '... and to the general disposition of auxiliary support
    elements, officers of said elements are to answer to (i) the
    primary commander of their given area/sector, and (ii) the
    ranking Alliance officer in their specific lilne
    subdivision.'


    Anglo-German Alliance General Order Book
    section 45f, paragraph iv, 'Command Protocol'.

    Winston Churchill gazed in awe as Sir Herbert Appleby -1-, the Permanent Secretary of his Cabinet Secretary, sir Edward Bridges, was ending his "brief" introduction about the incoming meeting of the War Cabinet. If the Prime Minister was right, the shocked faces of the high ranking officers also present in the room, no one had understood a jot of Appleby's tirade. Thus, Churchill was still a bit out of his wits and had to be told that it was his turn to speak.

    Thus, after looking for a brief last time to the pleased face of the mandarin who sat by his side, Churchill began.

    "Well, gentlemen, I have an audience with his Majesty in two hours and I am supposed to brief him on the general situation of the front line. Thus I would like to know what are we and our German allies are doing right now".


    Sir Herbert Appleby: the only man in the
    world that Teddy Roosevelt was afraid of


    Field Marshall Sir Cyril John Deverell summed the situation in the usual words of "confusion, chaos and fog of war" which could be translated as "we don't have a clue of what is really going on in the front line". However, Deverell knew that to admit that the Imperial High Command was getting informed through the newspapers and the radio would have meant a sudden end of his career, so he skip that part and went for that they knew for sure.

    The Germans were advacing on their own with the not too little help of the RAF. After breaking the enemy lines at Usti and Strakonice, the German armoured schwerpunkts had rushed through the plains of West Czechoslovakia and kept the Soviet and Czech forces on the run. However, the enemy command had began to do something more than reacting to the German onslaught and were attacking with great strenght both in Silesia and Austria. In the Oppeln area, General Wilhelm Adam was tring to steam the Red tide but his mission was far from easy. His Armeegruppe (six infantry divisions handsomely equipped with 8.8 cm guns) was under the attack of at least two complete enemy corps (fourteen infantry divisions) under the command of an unknwon Polish general who was knew damn well his job. That General Adam shouldn't have rise above commanding a division didn't eased the situation and it was a fact that his Armeegruppe was in full retreat..

    Meanwhile the IV Panzerkorps was rushing towards Lodz without too much ado. In fact its commander, General Werner Kempf, was complaining that he was being slowed by his own success, not by the enemy actions, as he had more troubles dealing with all the PoWs that were giving themselves up to his panzers than fighthing with an enemy that, to had insult to the injury, was running away faster than his Panzerkorps could advance.



    In Austria General Wilhelm Keitel was having little problem to stop the enemy. Apparently the Red forces had made a complete balls-up: the attacking forces -a weird mixture of Czech, Polish and Soviet troops- apparently were unable to do anything good against Keitel's forces -2-. In fact the cause for the mess was caused by the commanding structure of the Communist forces. Its CO was a Polish general who hated his Soviet staff, that, in turn, did not trust his superior while the NKVD commissars were patiently waiting for Moscow's order to shot either the general, his staff or all of them.



    Amused, Churchill thought that the meeting was to prove to be quite interesting... provided that Appleby remained in silence.


    -1- In this ATL, the grandpa of sir Humphrey.
    -2- I'm still unsure about if it was Keitel's merit for keeping the enemy at bay or the IA's fault for making a complete balls up by attacking in its usual way, that is, in the proverbial and traditional piecemal order and with any kind of coordination whatsoever.




    @trekaddict: I'm afraid to say, Trekkie, that my soft spot about those cats remains unscathed...

    @Nathan Madien: A very good read, indeed.

    @H.Appleb: Too true The question is. Would the Germans think that the Soviet fialure is caused by faults of the design or by a wrong use of those tanks? Anyway, we shall see. ]

    @trekaddict -2-: The Tiffy is a must, sir. You shouldn't even bother to ask. It's included on the menu, with the fish and chips and the whisky.
    Last edited by Kurt_Steiner; 15-04-2012 at 13:56.
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    Palo Dixit redux: Escatológico bipolar

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  18. #298
    Karl Popper Fanboy H.Appleby's Avatar
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    Oh dear lord, this will be grand.
    Obessively following Nathan Madien's excellent AAR: The Presidents: Vietnam War Edition and check out my own AAR: The American Experience 1912-1964

    Unapologetic, Arrogant, Unserious, Uncultured, Warmongering, Pyromaniac American Patriot. (As in I can take a joke about my country as long as you can take a joke or to about yours.) But seriously, I love the whole world, so don't take offense at my occasional bits of exaggerated jingoism, I'm really actually pretty open-minded.

    -.-. --.- -.. / -- --. -.--

  19. #299
    Quote Originally Posted by H.Appleby View Post
    Oh dear lord, this will be grand.
    Indeed, so far it hasn't been the waltz towards Moscow that I'd expected
    "Let's be free, the rest doesn't matters"

    The Great Kingdom of South Africa at Imperium Offtopicum Paradox -- Republic of Poland at World in Revolution 1861 -- Republic of Argentina at World in Revolution 1900
    Events GM in World in Revolution 1836

    Fan of the Week: July 17th, 2011

  20. #300
    And the comedy continues. Just how can anyone else make the Germans this funny without resorting to OOC actions?

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