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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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Griffin.Gen

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More James Bond refferences? Hurray!
 

El Pip

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Fleet-tastic, excellent to see those much needed additions to the RN. Should be most useful.

Good progress in North Africa, though I notice your update style has changed somewhat as you try and get NA 'out of the way'. Not a criticism just an observation on the difference. :)
 

trekaddict

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Griffin.Gen And by far not the last.

El Pip Aye. These Carriers allow me to re-establish the blockade.

And you are right. North-Africa is just attack-march-reorg-attack-march-reorg. Boring to write about.
 

trekaddict

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I plan to wrap up North Africa with the next chapter. Then up is the not-so-hotly awaited "Lessons learned" for France and North Africa.
 
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Well, to be serious, trek, you did not shock me too much with that update. :eek:o I thought that at least one of the Richelieus will be sunk, plus tons of other ships. You also did not mention the Dunkerques, which in my opinion, are worth mentioning since they are more powerful than the Scharnhorsts. ;)

Btw, I'd say your KGV looks great, but the front of the ship is still 2 guns away from being awesome. :p
 

trekaddict

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Well, to be serious, trek, you did not shock me too much with that update. :eek:o I thought that at least one of the Richelieus will be sunk, plus tons of other ships. You also did not mention the Dunkerques, which in my opinion, are worth mentioning since they are more powerful than the Scharnhorsts. ;)

Btw, I'd say your KGV looks great, but the front of the ship is still 2 guns away from being awesome. :p

Well, for now the French Navy is reduced to insignificance. The Richilieus are currently recieving upgrades in British Shipyards, as both weren't fully finished when France fell. :)
 
Aug 15, 2008
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Well, for now the French Navy is reduced to insignificance. The Richilieus are currently recieving upgrades in British Shipyards, as both weren't fully finished when France fell. :)

For some stupid reason, I can imagine El Pip ranting "New paddings for the RN!" :p

Btw, stuff for you next post, but read this before you accept it. :cool:
 
Last edited:
Aug 15, 2008
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As promised, for your ability to get me to post 200 posts. :p


lh3repoffar.jpg



The left is the front, and the right is the back. You've just reached the rank of Officier, congrats. :p
 

Griffin.Gen

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Wait, since when does France have medals?! :rolleyes:
'Kidding, congrats.
 
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trekaddict

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Doge Robert

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Righto... It has taken its time but it was well worth it..

I still remember your almost fearful start of this AAR Trek. How nervous you were about your skills and whether or not you would be able to attract enough readers and so forth...

And here you've managed to turn this AAR into one of the 'Greats', the masterpieces of fiction and gameplay combined into a story, which continues to enthrall us even now, far beyond a hundred updates into its telling...

You ought to step away from the screen and find a mirror.. Then you should look deeply into that mirror and see yourself for what you really are: The creator of a piece of art, a story which draws us all into a world where Britain is the leader of the free world and a world where freedom, peace and prosperity are all chanted amidst the musical notes of Rule Britannia..

Well done my friend.. Very well done indeed...
 

trekaddict

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Wow. Seriously....*blushes* I am immensly glad that you like it, because I am never fully satisfied with my writing when I post an update, which is probably a part of why it is so successful, I strive to improve it every time I sit down to type.

Thank you very, very, very much. :)
 
Aug 15, 2008
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And here you've managed to turn this AAR into one of the 'Greats', the masterpieces of fiction and gameplay combined into a story, which continues to enthrall us even now, far beyond a hundred updates into its telling...

Well done my friend.. Very well done indeed...

Agreed.

... because I am never fully satisfied with my writing when I post an update, which is probably a part of why it is so successful, I strive to improve it every time I sit down to type.

That is what I used to do, but I wonder if I'm still doing that since I'm so busy with tons of courses in university.

btw, you've not changed your sig, I'm not happy. :mad:
 

trekaddict

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Chapter 145

652dbbcd8bafaaf3.jpg


2nd January 1941 - 3rd March 1941

Lybia, Italian North Africa

The change of the year did not bring any better fortunes for the Axis position in North Africa. Quite the opposite. When Rome sent desperate please for help to Berlin and Moscow, Stalin and Hitler, after listening to their respective staffs and advisers and after talking about the matter during the first half-yearly conference, and it had been decided that trying to save the North African Front was a waste of resources. And for once the advisers were right. The Italian front did not break nor crumble, but was forced back. Time after time British and French attacks bent the lines, bent them almost to the breaking point, until the Italians fell back, even against direct orders from Rome. By mid-January the Italian front was hemmed in in a U-shape centred around Tripoli. British forces tried to break the pre-prepared, multi-layered defences that were remeniscent of the First World War. The line ran about half-way between Tripoli and El Agheila, and the British troops were exhausted by constant running battles between mobile battlegroups of both sides. General Brook however did not intend to start a small Western Front in the desert and decided that, after a short period of rest and refit, there would be a smashing frontal assault, overwhelming the Italians by mere firepower and strength. What's more, on the 10th, the French crossed the border between Tunesia and Lybia, making the noose ever tighter for the weakening Italian Army. By 27th January the Allied Armies linked up at the cost of heavy fighting and about eleven-thousand Casualties all around. When the smoke over the battlefield and the burnt out vehicles settled, the Italians had been encircled in a ring around Tripoli, roughly three miles in diameter, using an old ring of fortifications that had been started by the Ottomans when Lybia had belonged to them and that had been expanded by the Italians in the weeks since the Battle of Tobruk, when it had become obvious that the Italian Armies might not be as invincible as the Duce suggested. The British, caught unaware by the Italian preparations for what seemed to be slated to become a lengthy siege, ran into the defences and lost more men within the first two days than they had ever since the fall of El Agheila. General Brook soon called off the fruitless assault, much to the annoyance of General de Gaulle, his French counterpart. De Gaulle claimed that one final charge all along the line.

When Brooke told him in diplomatic worlds to get stuffed and respect higher-ranking Officers, even though there was still no unified command structure. De Gaulle was not inclined to listen to a British Officer, and slammed his men against the Italian perimeter time and again. The Italians knew that this was their last stand in North Africa and fought like lions. The French took losses they could ill-afford, and by the time he was ordered by Algiers to cease these attacks, the Italian line had not budged, and the field in front of them was littered with dead Frenchmen and Moroccans. Upon returning from the front to Algiers de Gaulle promptly blamed Brooke and his supposed lack of willingness to work together with the French Army. But the lack of Artillery support was a non-argument because the British guns had kept hammering away at the Italians during the whole time, and at times only tenacity that would have done the Coldstream Guards proud had allowed the Italians to hold the line. However the end was coming. A De Gaulle who had been cut back down to size by his civillian masters returned to the front and finally agreed with Brooke that simply bashing one's head against the trenches did not work. Taking the last position would not be easy. Their supply line over the sea was still intact, in spite of the best efforts by the Air units stationed on Malta and the few Submarines that remained in the Mediterranean Sea, so simply starving them out would not work. The French had shown that direct assaults would not work either. New things needed to be tried. In late February Brooke consulted with his commanders and in the end it was decided that a Company of the Royal Marines, reinforced with a battalion from the Royal Welch Fusiliers would do an end-run offensive around the far left flank of the Italian position and attack the strongpoint that was the lynchpin of the Italian line on the coast. It was the remnant of an old Ottoman fortress that still was a formidable strongpoint but was vulnerable from the sea and behind where the Italians had not bothered to reinforce the defences. After the stronpoint had fallen, 8th Army would attack just to the south of it and push through the disorganized Italian defences in an operation similar to the Battle of Tobruk. The operation was laid on for 3rd March.


3rd March 1941

Troopship MS Morning Star, Destroyer HMS Hyperion, Heavy Cruiser HMS Devonshire, Light Cruisers Arethusa and Penelope

The British task force slipped past the tired Italian coastal gunners in the dead of the night. Lights off, only essential crew on deck and so slow that they did not produce a wake that could be seen from more than a hundred yards away. The Cruisers were there to provide fire support to the landing force while the Destroyers and the troopship were transporting the men. The Morning star also had another ace in the hole, namely a field modification carried out in Alexandria in the form of a battery of metal rails fixed on the forward deck at a certain angle. Fitted on these fifty-two metal rails were UP 2 inch rockets, the first shipment of the ground attack version that had arrived in the Mediterranean Sea. The Officer who had had the idea while going on a bender in Alexandria and after having voiced this idea several times and to no avail, had, through various shady and dark ways, laid his hands on the rockets and claimed that the Royal Navy Mediterranean Fleet had authorized construction, and overseen it before being arrested. Tests had shown the viability of the idea and it had been decided to retain it for now.

Once the troops were ashore, they would let loose a full salvo of these projectiles into the Italian position. Aiming them was next to impossible, but the Officer who had requested the use of the Morning Star from General Brooke had said that it was more to make the Italians keep their heads down and to shatter their morale than to actually destroy the fortress. The less destruction wrought on the fortress, the better the positions were the Marines and the Fusiliers could use to hold their position until the Army arrived to relieve them. The Cruisers would move on as soon as the rockets were fired and shell the harbour of Tripoli itself in order to further confuse the Italians and to delay their co-ordination of a response. The boats were lowered down and the troops boarded them over rope ladders that were hanging down the sides of the ships. Dedicated Landing Ships were under development back in Britain, but would not see service for another year, so the Royal Marines still had to use normal boats, much to their annoyance. It was already getting light, so time was of the essence. The boats formed into a line, careful not to set their engines to a too high and noisy setting. When the Marines did move, the Fusiliers, among them Bloggs and Lieutenant Llewelyn. They sat in their boats and were holding onto their rifles, trying not to surrender to seasickness and the instability of the boats. When they were about halfway to the shore, roughly two-hundred yard from the wave line, a almost covered flashlight signalled that the Marines were ashore, and the lack of gunfire was a clear sign that they had not been spotted by the fortress towering on a hill above the beach. No lights could be seen and no fire came from the fortress.

The Fusiliers reached the beach, and Llewelyn signalled the ships, and after getting it wrong and trying a second time, he got a reply. 'Heads down'. Tin-hatted heads went into the dirt, and seconds later a sheet of flame lanced out from the Morning Star. The Rockets lanced high into the air and followed a ballistic and erratic flight path right into the fortress and the area around it, showering the area with explosions and shrapnel. Even before the explosions subsided, the British troops moved forward, rushing up the gentle slope. The Italian defenders that covered this part of the fortress were either dead, wounded or simply so stunned that they did not react when black figures came running at them. When the Marines and the Fusiliers reached the edge of the fortress they saw why: One of the rockets had smashed right into a machine gun nest and demolished it, ripping the crew to shreds. The other machine-gun crew had abandoned it's post in a vain effort to help them until they were pierced by the cold steel Royal Marine Bayonets, and they did not like that very much. The Senior Officer on the scene, a Royal Marine Colonel, yelled for a Lance Corporal Jones who promptly came running, wiping the blood off his blade. After several seconds, the Lance Corporal quickly relayed the orders. The group of men ran upwards, and only now the first shots rang out, but the damage was done, the British had broken into the fortress' outer fortifications. The main battleblock sat on the hilltop, and an open ramp without any possibility for cover. When the attackers rushed up the ramp, suffering the first casualties when increasing rifle fire began to smash into the mass of men rushing up the ramp. Still, there was nothing the Italians could do and soon enough the British came flooding over the small wall behind which they had taken cover. Hand to hand combat ensued and Llewelyn fired his gun into the belly of one onrushing Italian and parried a blow by another man, wearing the shoulder flashes of a Captain. The Italian Officer grabbed for Llewelyn's throat, but a second 9mm round from the FN stopped him, penetrating his left arm and sending him staggering backwards howling with pain. Llewelyn looked around. In the whole area the Italians were giving up one after another, and the British left the walking wounded behind and pushed on, pouring into the bowels of the fortress.

Out at sea, the Captain of the Destroyer that had remained behind while the cruisers went off to shell the harbour had his binoculars trained on the fortress where the gunfire had disappeared within the catacombs of the building. He was waiting for a signal that would show him that the fortress was taken, and by 6:22, he saw a green flare rising into the ski. He radioed the Army and mere minutes later, all guns belonging to the British forces in front of Tripolis opened up, executing a pre-arranged fireplan while the Infantry leapfrogged over the open ground. The shelling lasted only minutes but made up in ferocity and weight of fire. Total tactical surprise had been achieved, and the fact that there was a gap in the line that the Italians could not hope to plug in time now that they were engaged along the whole front did play into the hands of the British that came pouring through the gap the Marines and Fusiliers had created. Small groups of men flanked out and began to roll up the Italian line from the side with the expert use of tactics that their fathers had learned the hard way in the trenches of the western front. Hand Grenades and bayonets found good use that day, as did the Sten Gun that was slowly filtering down to the regular Infantry. Meanwhile Infantry and Bren-Carriers fanned out in the rear areas of the Italian Army, and by mid-day the Italian Commander decided not to bother with asking Rome for permission that would be denied and instructed his wireless operator to signal his surrender to the British. Soon the Union Flag and the Tricolore were raised over the fortress. The North African Campaign was over and all that remained now was to round up the Prisoners and start plotting the next moves. In Aldershot, Algiers, Berlin and Moscow Staff Officers would not get a lot of sleep over the next few months. In Aldershot a young Staff Officer belonging to a special and ultra-secret planning group was at this very moment closing a folder in order to go home and catch the sleep he had missed that night. The folder was nothing special in itself, despite it's thickness. The lables on it however were.


Most Secret – Mandoline
Eyes Only

If it were to be opened, there were three more words handwritten on the next page in an untidy scrawl:

'Operation Market Garden'





[Notes: Fortress is totally made up. And just to be clear, the FN Hi-Power is known as the FN Semi-Automatic Mk.I Pistol within the British bureaucracy and fires the 9x19mm round.]
 

Kurt_Steiner

Katalaanse Burger en Terroriste
Feb 12, 2005
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Market Garden? Sosabowski must be thrilled...:D
 

Griffin.Gen

aka Vidyaország, KR Developer
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Market Garden? Your going to send your airbornes in Arnhem? :confused:
Unless it's just a different operation with the same name. :rolleyes:
 

Thomas Kenobi

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unmerged(85800)

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i doubt it is the same. seems a bit early for a large-scale attack on germany. my guess is an airborne landing in sicily, if its an airborne landing at all. it seems the next logical step anyway, though that in itself may make it a stupid idea in real-life terms, anyway.