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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

trekaddict

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I thought I remenbered something like that, but I wasn't sure, as the C5 have been trashed -no complaints, though :D- in a few AARs of my liking :D

Glad to see that you're following the proper traditions that Britannia commands.:rofl:
Well, I dislike traitors who are against Democracy, as wingnut American as that sounds.
 

trekaddict

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Chapter 233

Things at the front had slowed down to the degree that Field Marshal Alexander was once again spending most of his time in staff meetings and with paperwork while both sides licked their wounds. In the estimation of his Staff it would at least take another week before the forces that had been so badly mauled, chiefly 1st Cavalry Division, would be combat ready again, never mind that he had decided redo the plan for driving the enemy back into the mountains anyway. He hated changing his plans, but the attack had clearly shown that the Axies weren't as battered as anticipated, and it had drummed home that while ULTRA was incredibly helpful at the strategic level, the Allies needed better tactical intelligence, and that meant more recce aircraft.

Anyway, the cryptic Call from his Intelligence Officer who had in turn been called by the chief of station with a message from the SOE Chief of Station for the European Front had been a welcome break from the mountain of work. He was rather curious, because when the man had left Italy a couple of days ago and had asked for his Second in Command the three before yesterday it had been a rather mysterious business. Now he had somehow managed to pick up a quote “potentially valuable defector” unquote and had now requested a plane since he wanted the 'loot' in Rome as fast as possible – never mind the risks that came with air travel all over Italy, the worst however had been the other thing that Fleming had requested, and if he thought about it, Alexander had to agree that it was the best thing to do. It had been set up using only SOE men and Alexander had delivered the message personally. That he had merely played the messenger didn't make him feel any better, but war was hell after all, and as the SOE Head of Station, Fleming technically had the authority to have done it without Alexander's involvement, and he realized that his was a shady job. Alexander shook his head. 'Give me an Army-sized attack any day.' he thought as he waited.

Had the Field Marshal known Ian better before granting the request and sending the field refitted Passenger Blenheim that was used as the HQ hack, because Ian hated taking unnecessary risks. The plane had dashed north and landed on an airfield near Milan, refuelled and then waited for the car that carried the defectors and their two handlers. Had Field Marshal Alexander known just who the defector was, he would have needed some serious effort on the part of his staff to be stopped from going up there himself. As it was he had insisted on greeting Captain Fleming himself and was now standing at the edge of the airfield, surrounded by his staff and a mixture of RMP and RAF Regiment security troops. It was already darkening and the flight would be the last of the day, but he was sure that Captain Fleming was doing it this way on purpose. The Blenheim they had requested was at this moment crossing the outer limits of Rome (the field was slightly to the south of the city) and began it's final approach. Ian meanwhile was busy with devising a way to get rid of his guest as soon as possible and make them the responsibility of someone else, but he had the sickening feeling that this wouldn't work. Whenever something like this had happened in the past he had been forced to pull through to the end, as if some mad, sadistic villain hidden in a cave somewhere was directing his every move.

Ian turned to the highest ranking defector and reflected on just how the man might have done the Allies a terrible disservice in spite of his good intentions, because now the Germans were bound to believe that Enigma might be compromised, and even though Ian had already some idea on how that could be prevented he was less than happy about doing it. Most likely there was no other choice though, and he was well aware that Field Marshal Alexander would most likely agree. He wasn't looking forward to explaining this to anyone and he feared that if he went through with it he might not be able to look into the mirror anymore, war or no war.

“Is there anything bothering you, Captain?” asked the senior of the two defectors.

“Nothing much, Admiral. It's only that your presence here and where we are taking you might cause some problems for....various colleagues of mine.”

Admiral Canaris was well aware that his defection would cause a ruthless purge in Germany and might lead to the British loosing some of their networks, but such were the ways of war, and in any case the intelligence that he carried in the boxes in the rear of the plane and in the attachee case between his feet was far more valuable than that.

He looked over to where his second in-former second in Command Hans Oster was snoring away merrily, ignoring what they had just done. He looked over at the British Officers who had changed out of their civilian clothes and back into Uniform the minute they had reached the British Embassy, and figured that they would most likely never understand what it meant for a German Officer to break the oath. Canaris had been forced to take the new oath on Hitler just like everyone else but he had been among the first that had realized that the Nazis only brought ruin.

“We're there.” said Commander Leiter and Canaris was torn from his thoughts.



Field Marshal Alexander watched as the Blenheim came in to land. The landing gear was down and the pilot was going at the correct speed, however when the starboard wheel touched down it immediately collapsed and the landing became a crash. The plane skidded over the concrete runway, just so missing CinC Europe and his group and then came to a halt in the sandpit beside the runway. Everyone, the Field Marshal included, started to run over to try and help, but before anyone could take more than a few steps, the planes starboard engine exploded and the whole aircraft went up in flames within seconds, burning anyone inside to a crisp within minutes in spite of the efforts of the station fire brigade. The fire was highly visible to everyone, and it was clear that those inside were dead. Alexander turned around on his heels and briskly marched off the field in search of a stiff drink and a place where to write the letter to the crew's relatives. What war made people do....


Back at headquarters he just sat in his office and waited for the inevitable phone call. He was so intently staring at the phone that he almost jumped out of his skin when it actually rang. He picked it up and said a few words into it before replacing it and walking out of his Office. In the rear of the Headquarters building was a wide open space that had been used as a parade ground for the Italian Cavalry when this had still been one of the barracks complexes of their Army. Today the car park for his Headquarters was there, along with offices for some of the lower ranked Officers that had to make do with Nissen huts. Near the edge of the compound he could see an Officer wearing the uniform of a RN Captain leaning against a Land Rover.



“Are you happy now, Captain?”

Ian shook his head.

“Not at all, Sir.” Ian pulled a cigar out of his pocket and attempted to light it, but his hands shook to much, so eventually he gave up.

“I'll need months before I can look in the mirror again Sir, but I didn't have much of a choice. I'm sure they were good men...”

Ian stopped again and took a few deep breaths to steady his nerves, and Alexander could see that he was indeed less than happy.

“I'm sure I'll see those to men in front of my eyes whenever I go to sleep, but I had to do it, I had to. ULTRA is too important, opsec for ULTRA trumps everything else.”

Which was the reason why Alexander had agreed to the scheme in the first place. The sacrifice of an aircraft and more importantly a two-man crew for reasons of state was never a matter to be taken lightly, but even though the particulars were not known to him he knew that the Germans were bound to get suspicious when their primary spymaster and his second in Command defected to the enemy during wartime, so faking them as dead in front of dozens of Romans of which at least twelve were known informers that had hidden wireless sets in their attics, the same when the aircraft had been seen boarded by the defectors and their handlers. What had not been seen was that the plane landed at an airbase south of the former Gustav Line where the men and their belongings had been disembarked, the plane refuelled, manipulated with some fiddling at the engine and the landing gear and a small charge to make sure and then sent on it's terminal way.

“The..ehrm.. Admiral has expressed a desire to meet you, Field Marshal. He said that he has something to give that should make it's way up the line ASAP and that a Senior Officer was needed for that.”


It was more than apparent that the Germans were unaware that Ian was working for the SOE now and/or that Lord Mountbatten had the ear of the Prime Minister, and that was about as high as one could get in the decision making circles of the British Empire. Ian hadn't complained, because it was an opportunity to get the defectors off his back and himself back to his own Headquarters where a lot of work was waiting.

Alexander meanwhile just nodded and walked back into the building, while Ian sat into the Land Rover, started the engine and drove around the complex to meet the Field Marshal out front. To any onlooker the little convoy was perfectly normal, the car that carried the Field Marshal and a single Land Rover as escort, no bigger or smaller than usual ever since Rome had been declared safe. Ian led him to a house near the old and recently re-opened British Embassy that had long been used as a conspirational hideout before Italy had entered the war. The man and his wife that lived in the lower storey rooms were on the list of the embassy and had been since the early 1920s, covering their real employment with a small shop where the man fixed shoes. Up on the top floor the Canaris and Oster were still waiting for Ian to return. When he stepped inside, closely followed by Field Marshal Alexander who had taken the clandestine entrance at the back, he saw to his surprise that the two men were still wearing their German Uniforms even though civilian clothing had been provided and Ian had thought about arranging British Uniforms with the appropriate services and rank Insignia since one couldn't shuffle two high-ranking German Officers through Allied North Africa and on towards Britain without attracting attention.

Ian was stepped outside as the two ranking Officers in the room exchanged introductions and as Alexander sat down on the side opposite of Canaris he noticed that Hans Oster was standing right beside him.

“We've come a long way since that day in Berlin.”

Ian looked the other man up and down.

“So that was you.” Ian was suitably surprised. He had known that some in the Abwehr was less than loyal, but that it had started this early was a surprise all the same.

“Surprised?” Oster asked with a smile.

Ian nodded and asked what he had wanted to ask for all these years.

“Why?”

“Oberst Steiner has already given you the rough details, but we can discuss this in more detail once we get to England.”

“I might have to disappoint you there, things like that are no longer in my line of work.”

Ian saw with satisfaction that Oster was obviously surprised. He had known that the German Intelligence in his regard wasn't accurate when Steiner had referred to him as Commander, ignorant of his promotion since.
Oster recovered quickly and pointed out that Canaris was most likely already arranging their escort to England.

“There isn't much I can do then I suppose.” Ian said, well aware that it would be an opportunity to visit his family, and that was something he'd walk back to Britain for.

“However a little bit of advice for you, Oberst. It's Britain, not England. England is just a part of Britain, and the Scots, Welsh and Irish wouldn't take it kindly if you called them English. I suppose it's just like when I would call someone from Swabia or Bavaria a Prussian.”

“Point taken, Captain.”

So as a result he found himself sitting in an Avro York taking off from a British airbase near Tripoli. He looked at the pocket calendar. It was the fourth today, and they would be in Britain early tomorrow evening at the latest, and then he would probably find out why he had been ordered to escort the men there and why on earth the Admiral was in such a hurry.


The reason for this was playing out on the other side of the world, along the border between the Japanese puppet state of Manchuria and the Soviet Union and also between the Central Asian Soviet Republics and the Chinese State. Almost sixty percent of the Red Army and the Red Air Force were there, waiting in their foxholes, trenches, airfields and assembly areas for the orders that would make them pour over the border. More than a million men, three thousand Tanks, the last Horse Cavalry Units in the Soviet Union and the remainder of their Mountain Rifle Divisions were assembled here. Their Officers were confident, and why should they not? After all even the Japanese had managed to conquer China, so why should the Red Army fail where the Imperial Japanese Army with fewer troops and much worse equipment had succeeded? Once China was taken the the crown jewel of the British Empire was within reach, and then the war would be won.






[Notes: Much of this depends on the general incompetence and compartmental rivalries of the German Foreign Intelligence Community. As much as it pains me to say this, but things haven't changed much in that regard since then....]
 

Kurt_Steiner

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For a second I thought that Oster and Canaris were going to meet their Creator a bit too early... :D
 
Last edited:

El Pip

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[Notes: Much of this depends on the general incompetence and compartmental rivalries of the German Foreign Intelligence Community. As much as it pains me to say this, but things haven't changed much in that regard since then....]
Perhaps the unified Germany should have hired Markus Wolf rather than trying to imprison him?

Interesting update but I do wonder why the Bleneheim wasn't rigged for radio control using the kit from a Queen Bee target tug? Wouldn't have the same dramatic impact I know, but I do wonder about theses things. I do hope Ian and Alexander never find out that was an option, it'll make them feel even worse.

Canaris and sidekick, I should have guessed they were the two most likely to defect. Though I wonder how much they do indeed know, as has been mentioned Britain is hardly short of high level strategic intel and I doubt they can help much on the lower levels. I do hope it was worth the effort.
 

trekaddict

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Kurt_Steiner No, because they are too fun Characters to write about.

CatKnight Thank you.

El Pip Well, Mr. Wolf was engaged in espionage operations against the FRG, a traitor to Baden-Würtemberg (born in Hohenzollern) and was rightfully convicted for it.

The problem is that both are well aware of this possibility, but the whole thing was set up so fast that they didn't have time to have one of the sets shipped in from North Africa where the nearest one would have been. The demons that hunt Ian because of this will be explored in due course.

Canaris and Oster are much less valuable than they might think, but there is lots of stuff they can help the Allies with. For one they were unaware that the Soviets were about to attack the Japanese, and there are a lot of procedural things and even a few ongoing operations outside of the UK that they can help with.
 

El Pip

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El Pip Well, Mr. Wolf was engaged in espionage operations against the FRG, a traitor to Baden-Würtemberg (born in Hohenzollern) and was rightfully convicted for it.
All true, but compared to the men who started the FRGs post-WW2 intelligence operations he was a saint. Given such a murky past and a proven history of morally suspect compromises it would hardly be out of character for Wolf to be 'forgiven' as long as he remained useful.
 

trekaddict

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True enough, but the German Commies have all gone the way of the Dodo as part of the Alliance agreement between Hitler and Stalin.
 

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Canaris! Yes. Not a bad choice, and nicely done little ruse. If I did not know that you wouldn't kill Ian off so easily, I would have believed it.
 

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Canaris! Yes. Not a bad choice, and nicely done little ruse. If I did not know that you wouldn't kill Ian off so easily, I would have believed it.
True. The ruse was more for the benefit of ze Germanz to make them think that Enigma is still save, and for mine so that I can explore Ian's darker side some more. ULTRA was something of a Deus Ex Machina in the past, but both IRL and ITTL it's far too important to risk.
 

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Chapter 234


The lagoon was mostly devoid of Navy shipping, the Combined Fleet was supporting in the Central Pacific against the Americans and would soon be joined by the fleet elements that covered the landings in the the Dutch East Indies. TrukTruk Lagoon, also known as Chuuk, was a sheltered body of water in the central Pacific. The atoll consisted of a protective reef, 225 kilometres around, enclosing a natural harbour 79 by 50 kilometres, with an area of 2,130 square kilometres. The area consists of 11 major islands, the biggest of which are Tol, Udot, Fala-Beguets, Romanum, and Eot of Faichuk group, and Moen, Fefan, Dublon, Uman, Param, and Tsis of Nomoneas group) and 46 smaller ones within the lagoon, plus 41 on the fringing coral reef, and is known today as the Chuuk islands. However they were most well known for being part of the Japanese Mandate area and for being the forward anchorage of the Combined Fleet. Even so the area between the largest Islands was full to the brim with merchant shipping and transports that only waited for the return of the warships.


Warships were approaching from the general direction of Australian Papua, but they were no cause for happiness among the Japanese forces in the lagoon. For the most part they consisted of escort vessels. Twenty Destroyers made up the lions share of that, but they were joined by eight light and one heavy Cruisers, one Battlecruiser and one Dreadnought. However the heavy hitters were not these venerable war veterans, but rather the seven Fleet Carriers they escorted. Technically that too was not a cause for concern, what however was a cause for concern was that none of these were serving the Emporer. Instead they were given their orders by the Admiralty of His most Britannic Majesty's Royal Navy and they were there to hand out a good thrashing to the Japanese base that threatened the Eastern half of the DEI and Australian Papua.

On the decks of the Carriers Illustrious, Formidable, Victorious, Indomitable, Implacable, Unicorn and Eagle the Fleet Air Arm armourers were loading up the Swordfishes, Barracudas and Seafires. It was the first large mission for the Barracudas, them having arrived in theatre only recently, and probably the last one for the Swordfishes whose Squadrons were due to reequip with the new Barracudas upon return to Australia. The crews of the Stringbag were determined that the old girl would go out with a bang, and they were going to give it to her. It was still dark when the Carriers reached a position 150 miles south of the Archipelago and began to turn into the wind. The Barracudas were the first to take off since they had the best endurance, followed by the Swordfishes and the Seafired. When the planes formed into Squadrons and Airwings and headed north to their target, Admiral Cunningham couldn't help but feel sorry that he couldn't go with them and was instead forced to wait here as almost the almost 250 Aircraft of the first wave streaked north. He was keeping the airgroups of Indomitable and Eagle back as a reserve, but Unicorn and Implacable were ordered to launch a second wave in half an hour so that the second wave appeared over the target just after the first one departed. It was difficult to coordinate, but the Fleet Air Arm was experienced in this sort of operations thanks to the time spent in the North Sea operating against the ports in Germany and the occupied low Countries and in the Mediterranean against Italy, and the institutional knowledge generated this way was put to good use. No major enemy warships were expected, and because of this almost half of the Swordfish carried six 250 pound general purpose bombs for use against military installations on the Islands while those that carried torpedoes were tasked with attacking merchants and transports.


Seafire belonging to No.900 Naval Air Squadron later that day. Since January 1942 the Squadrons embarked on the Fast Carriers are numbered 900 to 920 for Fighters, 930 to 950 for Bombers, 960 to 980 for torpedo planes, 985 to 999 for recce.


On the base meanwhile the last night watch was looking forward to being relieved as 6 o'clock and going to sleep. The defences were fully manned, but the Japanese Soldiers that did that were tired. The base had been given something special, a Type 2 Mark 1 Model 1 "11" Set, basically a copy of an old American Pre-war gun laying and air search system. It was one of the first Navy RDF sets that had been deployed outside of Japan itself, and since Truk was the most important base in the Southern Pacific, it had been the first to get one. The problem was similar to that the Americans had had in the lead up to Pearl Harbour, the operators weren't incompetent but rather badly trained and inexperienced. When the blip that was the cloud of Fleet Air Arm Aircraft appeared on their scopes, the two tired operators took their sweet time to forward this to the IJNAF Commander who was the senior Officer present that day. By the time the Japanese managed to start scramble their fighters, the Seafires tasked with Air Defence suppression and Air Superiority over the lagoon. When the first Zeros took to the air, 20mm and .303 projectiles were already impacting everywhere, soon joined by the small 250 pound bombs that the Seafires carried, destroying most aircraft on the ground, only a quarter of those that were combat ready managed to take off and soon found themselves embroiled in a dogfight with the British. Several Seafires were lost, but superior numbers told, and for the remainder of the day the FAA would have air superiority over Truk.

Sailor Fourth Class Hayato Kobayashi had been rudly awoken when several Seafires from Illustrious had strafed the airfield he was stationed at. He was an anti-air gunner, and he had been off duty. He had fallen out of his bed when one of the Mitsubishi G4M parked in front of his barracks exploded. He had grabbed his helmet from the floor, scrambled to his feet and then run outside with the rest of his room. The hellish scene that greeted them was something that they had never expected could happen to them, this was something that the arrogant pilot bastards did do others. Speaking of which, he couldn't help but feel a stab of satisfaction when he saw that their barracks was burning at one end. He followed his Petty Officer over to the sandbagged emplacement where the twin Type 96 25mm mount was placed. He wondered why the night shift wasn't shooting at the British Fighters that swarmed all over the base, but when he reached the gun he could see why and suddenly he was glad that he hadn't had breakfast yet because what was left of the last watch was scattered all over the place, and Human remains was something that Navy men saw less often than those in the Army. Luckily the gun was undamaged, and after hastily clearing away the worst of the gore, Kobayashi took his place at the trigger.
The Petty Officer raised his binoculars to the eyes to look for more enemies. Within seconds he spotted yet another group that replaced the Seafires that had departed by then.
This group consisted of Barracudas belonging to Implacable's Wing and Swordfish from Illustrious, and with their bombs their task was to damage the runway and the support facilities. The British Aircraft used a shallow dive against immobile ground targets and when they attacked the base buildings and the runways they ran into a barrage of light and medium anti-air fire that gave nothing to the defences of Wilhelmshafen. However it was scattered and uncoordinated. Kobayashi still fired like a madman, only pausing for target directions from the Petty Officer and for the handlers to put a new 15 round magazine in it. The British planes were fast, but even so Kobayashi managed a direct hit at a Swordfish no more than two minutes into this attack. Penetrating the body of the aircraft and that of the observer, the first round killed the man but the plane itself was essentially undamaged thanks to a faulty fuze. The next two rounds fuzed properly and exploded inches away from the engine and dozens of small fragments lashed into the Bristol Pegasus engine, severing the fuel line and setting the engine oil on fire. That the engine was on fire was inconsequential because a fourth round neatly severed the pilot's head. The plane crashed into the wreckage of a Zero where it was soon consumed by the fire. On the whole however the Japanese fire could be described as intense but inaccurate, and by the time the attack was over, two more Swordfish and a Barracuda had been lost.
All over the other Islands the story was the same as many Japanese gunners were surprised either asleep or so tired that it took some time for them to fully return fire as the Fleet Air Arm methodically reduced the base to a heap of rubble as the torpedo and shell storage, the fuel farm for the Aircraft and the ships along with repair yards, docks and quays were hit successively and damaged to a degree. The bombs were too small to knock out the bunkers with the shells or the docks directly, but when several planes fired their left-over torpedoes against the doors of the drydocks which were blown open by the impact of several hundred tons of TNT. The bunkers however were harder to be damaged, even though one of them was destroyed in a spectacular explosion when 14'' shells that had been waiting to be put into proper storage exploded and the chain reaction made for a spectacular bang as hundreds of shells exploded in sympathy. The most important bit of infrastructure that was destroyed on that day were however the large fuel-oil tanks on Moen Island. They attracted the attention of no less than six Swordfishes who dropped enough ordinance in between the tanks to make a far larger target go up in flames. Suffice it to say the Fuel Tanks followed the laws of physics and duly exploded, the burning fuel creating a tower of black smoke that was visible for dozens of miles.

On the sea the Japanese fared no better. Torpedo-armed ships began to sink ship after ship, and since most of the merchantmen weren't armed, it was a wholesale slaughter. Some of the survivors later likened the white painted British bi-planes to the eagles that hunted for prey in the central mountains of Japan, circling the target area, waiting for their turn. It was over in less than half an hour, but before the stunned Japanese defenders could crawl out from behind cover and their guns, the smaller second wave arrived. Everything that moved was bombed, strafed and torpedoed, and many things that didn't were for the second time for good measure. Kobayashi had completely lost track of time, his world had been reduced to the roaming aircraft and the trigger of his emplacement. Suddenly however the sky was clear of aircraft and one by one the gunners ceased fire. Little more than an hour after the first bombs had fallen, the British aircraft were retreating back to their carriers.


Burning oil tanks
The Japanese reaction to the attack was somewhat uncoordinated, mainly due to the fact that most of the aircraft that normally would have responded to such an attack were burning away on the airfields of Truk and also because there was simply no one to order a strike anyway. By the time a few bombers managed to take off and go look for the British Fleet, the Carriers and their escorts were well on their way back to Australia. The senior Officer on the base took his time to survey the damage, and when he was able to communicate his report to Tokyo (the first one heard of the attack there) he had to admit that Truk was knocked out as a naval base for at least several months. The biggest drydocks were destroyed, the fuel stores burning and much of the Japanese merchant and transport Fleet in the area destroyed, and it would take at least several months to get it back into service. That this also put an end to any plans to attack Australian Papua and the Dutch holdings in the area was of a minor concern, because by the time the report reached the Imperial Capital on the 6th, the Japanese High Command had another problem entirely.


Early that morning seven thousand Artillery Pieces opened fire on Japanese border positions in Manchuria, Soviet Bombers flying out of airfields near Vladivostok bombed Korea and mainland Japan, tanks and men in untold numbers poured over the border and Operation Thunderstroke was launched. During the day most of the Japanese border positions were breached, but they achieved their objective to delay the initial thrust and to allow the Japanese, Chinese and Manchurian Army units to fully mobilize. In the air over Manchuria the surprise was far from Total. While the Japanese had only discovered and begun to exploit the Manchurian Oilfields in the last couple of years, but it had allowed the Japanese Government to amass considerable stockpiles of all sorts of fuels. Standing air patrols where thus made and even though most of them where overwhelmed and shot down, but overall the IJAAF and Manchurian Air Corps units put up a good fight even though both sides flew obsolete and obsolescent aircraft. The best aid the Japanese had however was the terrain. Most of the border railheads were heavily fought over and when the Soviets advanced along the line, they time and again found it to be blown, booby trapped or simply not built yet. The Japanese knew that the massive host of Infantry and Cavalry that the Chinese had in reserve was going to do it's share of the fighting.

The second prong of the attack from the Central Asian Republics of the Soviet Union did far worse than the reasonable progress from Manchuria. While the Soviets had it easier to bring in the units and support them thanks to a twin-track branchline from the Transsib built over the last three years, the terrain favoured the defenders massively. Here combat would be characterized by the mountains and deserts of the province, eternally favouring the defender. Here though a third player appeared on the scene. Even though they ahd failed to deliver word to the Provinces in Question before the deed was done, the British would eventually join too, with Mountain Troops drawn from the Indian Army reserve and some Gurkha Regiments that had not been sent to Europe as planned. All of this third Front of the British War effort was under the command of GOC North-West Frontier Force, Lt. General Bernard Law Montgommery, known as Monty by the troops and the press, wearing an RAC beret even though the next tank was four-hundred miles away.



[Notes: Finding proper terrain maps of that area is next to impossible, so I might plan my war in the North-West Frontier Province with Google Maps/Earth.]
 

Kurt_Steiner

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Those pesky Russians... are they crazy? With the Allies kicking their asses in Europe, do they need more fun? Worse still. They are going to make a heroe out of Monty. :D
 

Le Jones

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On the decks of the Carriers Illustrious, Formidable, Victorious, Indomitable, Implacable, Unicorn and Eagle the Fleet Air Arm armourers were loading up the Swordfishes, Barracudas and Seafires.
Wow, an impressive collection of CV/CVL might! Might I enquire as to how much of your CV assets were actually assigned to this? Given the truly world-spanning nature of your war, did the RN throw everything into this mission? I'm sorry to ask, but as ever I loved the update and wanted to put it 'in context'.
 

trekaddict

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Kurt_Steiner So far they are confident that they will win against the Allies in Europe and the attack into China is part of a grander strategy to force them to the table. They don't know that Monty is there though.

Le Jones In-AAR these are all full-size Fleet Carriers. :D


In the game all of my modern CVs are in the Pacific.


In-AAR its much the same, the Med Fleet is down to two BBs and HMS Glorious, the rest of the old ladys are with the Home Fleet, so in terms of modern ships its very much an all out effort, even though at least one Carrier always remains in the waters around northern Australia.
 

trekaddict

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What is the connection between the manor in the picture and my AAR?


 

El Pip

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Clearly the Soviets must have no idea Germany intends to stab them in the back. Could be fun for them when that happens!

Also an excellent job by the FAA, though I doubt the Japs are short of Pacific island bases it's still a good start.
 

stevep

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trekaddict

Well that sets the cat amongst the pigeons. Like Kurt I think the Soviets are stupid, not so much because of a threat from Germany but because it divides the alliance against the British empire. Not to mention, if I understand rightly they want to attack India via China. [Apart from the large number of Japanese and Chinese in the way the game must rather divert from reality if that makes logistical sense!:confused:]

Going to be interesting to see how the politics work out in what is now at least a 3 sided war - possibly 4 if you count the Americans.

Out of curiosity? Do you think you could still have won if the Soviets hadn't done this? Would have been a lot tougher without them and the mega-Japanese bleeding each other.

In terms of the manor the only guess that comes to mind is that it might be Bletchley Park? [The only other option that occurs and I think its fairly unlikely was, it think its Manor Farm, where we held a lot of the leading German military and scientific figures for a while after the war in Europe ended].

Steve
 

stevep

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Clearly the Soviets must have no idea Germany intends to stab them in the back. Could be fun for them when that happens!
I'm not sure if the way Trekkies set the scenario up prevents that. Also given that the empire is putting a lot of pressure on Germany especially at the moment I doubt if even Adolph would risk something like that in this situation.

Also an excellent job by the FAA, though I doubt the Japs are short of Pacific island bases it's still a good start.
They have a lot of bases but Truk is one of their most important. Probably the most important outside Japan. Also as the reports says they had a hell of a lot of ships and other equipment there and much of that is now in less than sterling state. While the game might make it easier to replace losses than real life - guessing here but suspect so? - its going to take some effort to replace them. Even without the Red army attack.

Steve
 

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I'm not sure if the way Trekkies set the scenario up prevents that. Also given that the empire is putting a lot of pressure on Germany especially at the moment I doubt if even Adolph would risk something like that in this situation.
If he sees the Soviets over-stretched and can stabilise the front in Italy I wouldn't put it past him. The Alps are an outstanding defensive line and the rest of Northern Italy isn't shabby either, the Empire could get very badly clogged up on them.

If that happens and if the Soviets over-reach themselves into China then I can see it happening, it may not be sensible or even sane but when did Germany strategy ever have to be?
 

trekaddict

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El Pip Both the Germans and the Soviets have no idea that the other plans to stab them in the back, even though both of them won't do it until perfidious Albion is defeated.


stevep
The Soviets figure that with the Japanese/Chinese and the British hacking away at each other both won't have much in the way of reserves. Oh how wrong they are. Actually, its like this: Allies vs Axis, Allies vs Japan, Axis vs Japan, America vs Japan. I could win without the Soviets doing this, but it would take longer and be very, very hard to do.

The Connection between the house and my AAR is rather more contemporary....

stevep The game prevents backstabbing while allied and at war, and to leave the Alliance with the other, they'd have to be at peace first.


Truk is indeed the biggest Japanese base in that area, and the FAA attacked it because it's a threat to the Allied position to the south and could potentially used to outflank the Allied defenders farther west.

The Japanese are wired in such a way that they'll have a hard time replacing any losses.

El Pip Wouldn't happen even then, mainly because the General Staff would veto it as long as the British are still around. Ze Führer has much less of a hold over the OKW, mainly because there was no miracolously fast defeat of France and because Italy was lost already.