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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Jape

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Stalemate

The Marines, trained in the lastest stormtrooper tactics and armed with flamethrowers, grenades, mortars and the brand new light mobile machinegun, the NP05-MkIII, smashed all local garrison units within a few hours and secured a single united beachead within the week. As the Marines marched on Hamburg and Bremen and cut off Holstein from the rest of Germany along with some 30,000 troops on the Danish border, there was panic, not only amongst the general populace but in the High Command as well.

NP05-MkIII 'wheat cutter'

The Germans had not at all been ready for the war, and had expected an attack from the French border if anywhere, now faced with over 100,000 enemy troops in the North within striking distance of the industrial Ruhr valley and unsure about French plans, they had to split their 500,000 standing troops between these two fronts and the Polish border, as Krakow had launched a suprise attack on Russia only the day before the Red Fleet attack.

The German army that could be raised in times of war had dramtically grown since the New Years Revolutions, to some 1.5 million within a few weeks plus millions of volunteers, all with basic army training already, could be easily found and trained in a few months. The French had their own reserve of 1 million men and women and began a recruitment campaign immediately for more. The ASR's military machine was somewhere between the massed conscript armies of Continental Europe and Britain's small professional force. Manhatten boasted some 650,000 soldiers dotted all over the globe, all trained in the use of various weapons and in the duties of men a rank above them, while Britian used its elite troops as colonial police, the ASR used theirs as a strike force, designed to be able to deal a crushing blow to any modern army on the planet. Behind this force was the Home Guard of some 800,000 men and women, though technically militia, the Home Guard were trained to very high standards and more than prepared for a war abroad. Hugo had been in the process of militarising the civilian population when war broke, and had aimed at having the Home Guard at 2 million by the end of 1905 but this had clearly not happened. Despite this most adults fit for enlistment had at least basic weapons training and could easily be trained up given time.

A member of the Home Guard at her post. One advantage that the ASR and other Communist countries had over their enemies was their employment of women in the armed forces, doubling the number of possible recruits in times of war

Due to the ways things work, Germany was virtually alone in the war against the ASR and France. The Axis had failed to yet make its alliance system official. Russia was amazed at the strength of their Polish and Ukranian enemies and as they were pushed further back into their own country, they gave Germany only moral support. Japan did offer assistance but her fleet along with her transports were very quickly annhilated at the Battle of Okinawa on Febuary 28th, leaving the various islands of her Empire open to attack when best suited Manilla Command. The Portugeuse, fearing for their colonies only sent unofficial 'volunteers' and many of these never made it oweing to geographic problems, the Czechs did the same but could only offer several regiments as their Civil War raged on.

The French rushed the German border defenders after several days of indecision and marched cautiously into Alsace-Lorraine only for vast German forces to smash into them. The Battle of the Borders was a chaotic, highly mobile and destructive affair, and in the end the French, running out of reserves had to retreat back to a line running from Verdun in the north to Bescanou in the south at the beginning of April. By now some 250,000 ASR troops under the personal commander of Hugo, going by the name of the 1st Army had landed in Calais and quickly begun marching to the main frontlines, where the two exhausted sides had started digging in.

The Marines who had terrified Germany when they had landed were now slowly falling back along a wide front as almost half a million reserves descended on them on March 27th. Marshal Higgenbotham, commander of the Red Marines had virtually no control as more and more enemy soldiers pushed against his retreating men. The single front was cut in half by April 16th, and then slowly command level shrunk from Corps to Division to Brigade to Battalion as units became cut off from the rest of the Army, their only orders being to make it to Hamburg for evacuation. As the forces became more split, the 3rd Red Marine Corps became totally isolated and with no chance of making it to Hamburg made a mad dash for the Danish border, where they would have to break through some 30,000 dug-in Germans that they had kept there themselves when they had cut across the pennisula over a month previous. The Marines' attack was coordinated as best as the Corps commander, Mjr. General Michaels, could do in such a short space of time, and the individual soldiers were driven by desperation. The casualties were horrendous on both sides, and of the 23,700 that attacked, only around 10,000 Marines managed to get across the border.

Fighting in a North German town, April 1906

As the Danish military welcomed the 3rd Corps survivors on April 20th, Hamburg desended into bloody street-to-street fighting as the Marshal's 61,000 men, many wounded or not even armed, attempted to board transports and escape the country. The 200,000 Germans in the area under the command of Erich Luddendorf soon found their numbers to be as much a problem as an advantage in the narrow streets. The Red Marines, adept in many kinds of warfare, turned the rubble of Hamburg into a fortress, the VI. Red Marine, the division charged with defending the city's perimeter took on several full German Corps, for over a week while the other divisions left bound for France. The VI. finally left on April 30th and within two weeks the Marines had reorganised into new formations and were on their way to what was being called the meatginder....

Verdun.​
 

Sir Humphrey

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Thank muchly, nice to be complimented by the king of the alt history AAR *proceeds to grovel* we're not worthy!, we're not worthy!
*Adjusts crown* Thanks very much. :)


Another great update and you are more than worthy. Keep it up. :)
 

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Is retreating from Germany all together wise? Won't the German forces committed to the area then be sent to the west front where your forces are headed? It seems like digging in with what you can hold and awaiting fresh reinforcements would have been a wiser solution.
 

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Jape said:
kinda like the Domino theory really :D
So Spain will fall next, followed by Portugal? *looks around nervously*
 

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Congratulations Jape, you are a worthy writer of the week. :)
 

Jape

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Verdun

Marshal Hugo's plan to draw the main German force away from the French border hadn't worked as he had hoped. Some 800,000 troops had been deployed to the area and almost annihilated the expeditionary force, but the pathetic French command had not at all captilised on it, they had rejected the ASR's revolutionary new infantry tactics in favour of the traditional Neo-Napolenonic strategies that had now to led to the current situation. Millions of men facing off in a terrible war of attrition, it seemed the Germans had paid more attention to Hugo's theories than the French as they attacked constantly hoping to break the stalemate before it stagnated.

Hugo demanded overall control of the Allied armies, and after this was rejected by Joffre after reading the Chairman's polite letter, he quickly agreed after a face-to-face meeting of the two, Hugo was certainly known for the sheer terror he could instill in a man, and it seemed he had done it again.
Hugo quickly as possible put his plans into action, and with more modern tactics began repelling and then counter-attacking against the Germans, punching holes through their lines and advancing, capturing thousands in encirclements, although at a vast cost to the Allied forces.
As the army's steam ran out and the Germans began to give organised resistance, Hugo managed to pull a fast one by sending several French divisons and the I. Cavalry Corps through neutral Luxembourg, smashing the token German border defences and pushing on into their rear. This action helped give the final leg of the offensive some much needed relief and as it ended on June 7th, Allied troops had foot-holds in Alsace-Lorraine and Southern Germany as well as control of Strasbourg.

Despite the great advances made in little more than 6 weeks, the 1st Army had suffered 45% casualties, amounting to some 112,000 dead and wounded; the Germans and French had suffered even worse. Though these figures show the horrors of modern warfare, they would give a better picture if they told of where the soldiers had fallen. Half of all ASR deaths could be traced to the area around the Verdun fortifications, the only sector of the entire front to have seen absolutely no movement of the frontline.
The fortresses of Verdun had been started by the French following the 1st Francho-German War (often called the 2nd Francho-Prussian War to stop confusion) of 1882. Little work had been done on the defences due to the ravaged economy by 1891, when the Germans had again attacked, and they had been captured for good, it seemed. The Kaiser's High Command saw the possibilities of the forts and with a full budget and a distinctly German-approach set about creating the 'finest engine of death and horror' as Marshal Hugo would put it. When the London Times began referring to Verdun simply as the meatgrinder, the Kaiser was heard to say 'nice to know our hard-work is appreciated'.

Another futile attack, May 1906

Hugo and the Western Theater Command (WTC), his general staff, knew Verdun would have to be taken or else the Germans would have a string-board from where to launch an offensive of their own. No action would be taken until the Home Guard formations had arrived in July, with the 1st Army depleted and the French considered terribly un-reliable, the 700,000 troops would be appreciated. Two problems would put very big flys in the Chairman-Marshal's ointment. The transports needed to get the new 2nd and 3rd Armies across the Atlantic didnt exist, it would take until August at best for the whole force to be ready for action as Manilla Command, who controlled a third of all military transports were busy using them in an amphibious campaign against Japanese islands and their holdings in Korea and along the Chinese coast (The Germans had been wise to heavily fortify all their Pacific Islands to stop the facilities vital for re-fueling their fleet from falling into enemy hands, that there was no fleet left to re-fuel wouldn't be known until after the war).
More important than the transports, the German attacked in the Verdun area as predicted but much sooner than believed possible. The rest of the front remained relatively calm while a million men battled and died for the trenches and bunkers over June and July. Even as Belgian volunteers (Paris, Manhatten and Brussels all knew Belgian entry into the war at this point would almost certainly result in the country's collapse) flocked to the Allied cause and Italy declared war on Berlin on June 28th, the 1st Army and French struggled to hold the never-ending stream of German troops from spliting the line.

Even under Hugo, the ASR had been weary of using poison gas but in this situation, outnumbered 2 to 1 with their flanks buckling and relief from 2nd Army and the Italians perhaps a week away, the WTC could see little choice. Chlorine Gas was released as the wind turned towards the German lines, on June 30th and its effects on the un-protected and un-prepared enemy was shocking. Along one section of the line it was used as a German attack began, resulting in less than 10% of the 13th Bradenburgers making it back to their own trenches. Many units gave up their positions and retreated to the reserve and supply trenches.

Verdun, June 30th 1906

Ultimately used as a last resort, the gas could have led to a second great breakthrough had it been used at another time, but unsure about how effective it would be and with few units at more than two-thirds strength, the WTC lost a vital opportunity. Only the Commando Brigades, Hugo's 'Imperial Guard', were sent forward, to judge the situation and take out any key fortifications or munitions dumps abandoned. Several units came across no living German prescense for twenty five miles but due to their size only small, local gains were made.
The slaughter would continue.
 
Last edited:

Sir Humphrey

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Ah, great as ever. :)
 
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Wow this is a wonderful AAR. Great job Jape
 

Jape

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Red Dawn

The Chlorine Gas attacks of July 30th shocked the world, but stunned Germany it must be said. All ideas the German public had about showing upstart Frenchies and brash Yankees a thing or two, died in the blood filled trenches of Alsace-Lorraine. Suddenly people began to grumble about the naval blockade and the numbers of new recruits fell. The Kaiser's generals called off all offensive operations and apart from local assaults would be hesitant to conduct them again for the rest of the war. The gas had also given the Allies a respite while reinforcements poured in. The 2nd Army finally arrived on August 3rd and was immideately thrown against the weak flanks of Verdun. Within one week the fortress was surrounded and bypassed, with the French under Foch charged with crushing it as Hugo thought such a 'secondary' task would be suitiable for his apparently inferior ally. The Italians on the other hand were treated as virtually equal partners, thanks to their tactics they had devolped during the Austrian War, and were given contol of most of the southern end of the front, where their Alpine forces could be put to good use.

The Alpini

Slow progress would be made until November when both sides would settle down for the bitter cold of winter. Virtually all of Alsace-Lorraine was retaken while Saarbrucken fell on September 16th and spearheads were probing in the Ruhr Valley, The Italians had also made moderate gains and would spend Christmas outside Freiburg. The 3rd Army would arrive over winter as would the 'Latin Army', a mixture of Cuban, Central American, Venuzualan and Uraguayan Divisions as well as South American volunteers, while the Germans would bring another 2.5million men into uniform, however over 1 million would end up being stationed along the coast and 500,000 on the Polish border.

Marshal Garcia, commander of Cuban and other 'Latin' forces

The German position was a paranoid one, with the small but powerful armies of Belgium and Poland seemingly waiting to strike, threat of another amphibious invasion ever present in the people's mind, her apparent allies sitting on their hands and 1.5million experianced Hungarian and Bosnian troops mobilising with only the crumbling Czech Republic in their way. Ultimately the Germans could have propped up the Czechs, occupied Denmark, attacked the Poles and Belgians but for all their strength to do all this would had lefted them vunerable, but to not only helped the Allied cause, if only to to galzanise the German public.

Only one major battle would take place over winter on the 'Western' Front and that would be Verdun. After taking the brunt of Allied casualties already, the French were weary to simply throw themselves at the citadel. From late August they had bombarded and battered Verdun with the help of the ASR's Defense Corps Engineers on and off until mid-October. They had used Gas extentavley as the garrison lacked adequate masks and even employed airplanes for the first time in war, in the form of the Red Air Fleet's no.1 squadron the 'Harlequins' dropping bombs, though ultimately with little effect on the battle. The garrison would be reduced to 38% of its original force by December and on Christmas Eve would finally surrender.

The Harlequins- Knights of the Sky

Casualties of 1906
German casualties: 714,000
Dead:- 177,000
Wounded:- 421,000
POW:- 115,000

French casualties: 513,000
Dead:- 106,000
Wounded:- 334,000
POW:- 053,000

ASR & Mandate casualties: 302,000
Dead:- 082,000
Wounded:- 166,000
POW:- 054,000


Elsewhere around the globe, late 1906 would see German Namibia fall to French and Belgian troops, as well as native rebels. The Japanese Pacific Islands fall and Manilla Command land in Korea and on the mainland Japan on Kyushu with a combined force of some half a million Filipinoes. The Japanese population, told their armeis were holding on, on Okinawa quikcly became dissatisfied with the government, but the Marxist Faction, already limited in it's participation, is totally expelled from the Diet and all anti-war protests broken up. Violently.
The Russian Army, a relic of a by-gone age is smashed at the battle of Kiev in September by the combined Polish-Ukranian 'Grand Armee', who like most anti-Axis forces are trained and equipped in ASR fashion. Krakow's government is moved to Warsaw as the Russians give up all of Congress Poland and much of Western Ukraine. Revolts also begin in Georgia, Finland and the Baltic as the Tsar is assassinated by an Anarchist.

Eclipse of the Rising Sun
 

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Boy, are they heavy casulaties!
 

unmerged(45852)

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What a great AAR. :)

I don't know whether to pound the table in anger about my country being ripped apart by communists or load up a game where I rip it apart myself as the commune.
 

Pacer

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How are you still going on with this AAR?
:confused: :confused: :confused:
 

Jape

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Alfred Russel said:
What a great AAR. :)

I don't know whether to pound the table in anger about my country being ripped apart by communists or load up a game where I rip it apart myself as the commune.
hahaha, glad you're liking it Mr.Russel

and Pacer, read back through the thread and you'll probably find out
 

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Just realized i hadn't posted yet in this excellent AAR yet so here goes.
Excellent AAR, read most of it, so sad the file died.
Keep going!