Chapter 6: Hurting the Italians
In the previous chapter we saw how Romania attacked the Italians on their own soil: Sicily. The next step is to defeat the Italians, while they are busy with France. After we conquered Sicily, Italy defended the Strait of Messina pretty good.
We were certrain that we could beat the Italian Army with the next plan:
1. Red: We do an invasion behind the troops that stationed next to Messina. We try to take them out. It will be hard, because they can still receive supplies (port) and we don't have that many divisions we can get there. We will be outnumberd i think, so we have to handle quick.
2. Yellow: After we are done with "Code Red", we invade the other side of Southern Italy and together with the troops that were involved in "Code Red", we march up the boot.
3. Blue: As we expect some heavy resistance in the central part of the boot, we invade the region next to Venice. We hope to get some divisions up there, so we can move on in the center.
4. Green: We have to get together in an assembling area, so we bring the Italians their final knock out.
Before the start of our invasion, we declared war on Portugal, one of our future targets, on 4 January 1940.
Romania DoW Portugal
A few days later we see that the Italians move a good amount of divisions to the north. Shouldn't they be able to hold the line over there? As we see on 25 January, they clearly couldn't. The French army did some great movements in the north. This would make things easier for us.
Italian movements to the north
French Army advancing into Italy
Well, our navy isn't that strong, but we managed to sink two submarines of the Regia Marina. That's a very good result!
Hurray! We sunk two submarines.
In the meanwhile Germany attacked Denmark, so they could close the Baltic Sea for the Allies. On 6 February 1940 this game got a surprising change. Germany declared war on the Soviet Union or vice versa. This would make things more and more interesting.
Germany attacks Denmark
Germany and the Soviet Union at war
At least on the short term a weak Axis would be good for us. We decided that it was the right moment to attack the Italian boot. One day before the German-Soviet war we launched a massive invasion in the provinces of Gioia Tauro and CatanzaroWe encircled the Italian troops next to the Strait of Messina. We managed to launch a succesful amphibious invasion right after the divisions in Reggio di Calabria. We encircled them, but left Messina undefended, because we didn't have enough troops to attack and defend. We blocked the enemy with our ships, so they couldn't cross the Strait of Messina. We managed to close them in and destroy almost 60.000 soldiers, including some armoured divisions. The Romanian Army was celebrating the huge victory, but soon they got orders to move northwards..
Right after the invasion
We managed to push the Italians back..
..and are winning the battle of Reggio di Calabria
Romania won the Battle of Reggio di Calabria. Italy lost almost 60.000 soldiers
We transported some extra troops to Messina, so the troops couldn't escape.
Situation in Southern Italy
We did quite a good job in Italy until now. The French are moving in the north, we are advancing from the south. We got another force for a second or even third amphibious assault. Eventhough our navy is very weak, we don't have to much problems to handle the Regia Marina. We try to avoid the battles and ofcourse the Royal Navy is very helpful.
Next chapter: coming up!
In the next chapter we see how Romania is dealing with the Italians. Are the Romanians able to push the Italian back to Rome or even further? Or do we have to retreat to Sicily again and what about Northern Africa? We will see in the next chapter..