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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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i for one would like paris to be bloodily defended until the tricolour is pulled down from the last ruined remnent of the once beautiful city of lights... is that a pig going past my bedroom window?

are we to see some action where the soviets and nazis both try to put the other;s units in the hottest spots, as they both plot the others betrayal?
 

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Ahrg Ive fallen behind! it'll take forever to catch up now!
 

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Lord Strange If I can't defeat them, then yes, very likely. The Polish stand at Warsaw will from now on be regarded as on par with Roukes Drift, the Alamo and others, and not only in the British Empire.

Enewald As stated above, not quite yet. If they manage to defeat/fight me to a draw, then perhaps there could be a falling out between the two.

Kurt_Steiner Has been done already I'm afraid. But rest assured, Hitler's fate will be..different from Real Life.

Griffin.Gen I will do what is neccesary! Poland will be communist over my dead body. They fought much too hard for that.

BritishImperial :D Hehe. So anyway, I will try to make a fight for France, but I am afraid the British Army is still too small to do it on its own.

Raaritsgozilla Fear not, it is all worth the time.
 

El Pip

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Caught up!

Interesting to see how the many threads of the latest "Ian and Felix adventure" would have been woven together, had the brave duo not intervened.

I confess I am curious as to what was actually on the Kalinin, something I expect to come out in future updates. After all the crew must have known something was amiss, at the very least the senior officers would have known of the extra cargo and final destination. Ramius obviously had to know and I wonder how loyal he will be as a PoW, his namesake/alter-ego was not the most 'politically reliable' after all....
 

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Caught up!

Interesting to see how the many threads of the latest "Ian and Felix adventure" would have been woven together, had the brave duo not intervened.

I confess I am curious as to what was actually on the Kalinin, something I expect to come out in future updates. After all the crew must have known something was amiss, at the very least the senior officers would have known of the extra cargo and final destination. Ramius obviously had to know and I wonder how loyal he will be as a PoW, his namesake/alter-ego was not the most 'politically reliable' after all....

I've kept all that open, because I haven't decided yet.
 

trekaddict

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Intermission #2


When Air Vice Marshal Harris took over for Sir Charles Portal as the AOC-in-C Bomber Command in December 1939, his new command was equipped with a wide variety of Bombers that ranged from 'barely adequate' to 'utter rubbish', to quote his own words. The backbone of Bomber Command's Strategic Force for much of the late 1930s was supposed to have been the Short Stirling, born of Air Ministry Specification B.12/36 in 1936. However the specification itself was already part of the death sentence for the then-heaviest Bomber in RAF service. The fact that the Air Ministry demanded that a disassembled Stirling had to be transportable by train led to an unsuccessful attempt to keep the weight down by limiting the wingspan to one-hundred feet. However, projections showed that this would drastically reduce the service ceiling and speed, and as a result the Stirling was cancelled only months before production was to begin in August 1940. However, just like it was and would be with numerous designs over the years, it found a niche in an area for which it had never been intended during conception. In early 1940 the Royal Parachute Corps, struggling to become an accepted part of the British Army, was looking to replace the Armstrong Whitworth Albemarle, which were supposed to equip the Army Aviation Squadrons that would transport them, as transporting the projected four full Divisions would require a prohibitively expensive fleet of planes. The Stirling was looked at as a large heavy transport, and in June 1940 a limited production run was approved, and so the Sterling served in this role alongside the Douglas UK Dakota Mk.Ia until it was replaced by the Avro York in early 1944.

When 1940 dawned, most of Bomber Command's squadrons were equipped with the Avro Manchester, which founded the traditional association of Avro Aviation Ltd and RAF Bomber Command. It originated from a specification that was released a few months after the one that created the Short Stirling, which called for a twin-engined "medium bomber" for "worldwide use", that was supposed to be able to carry out shallow dive-bombing attacks at an angle of roughly 30°. It was to be powered by the Rolls-Royce Vulture engine, which would eventually spell doom for an otherwise promising medium Bomber. The engine, which had shown promise during development, was plagued with failures, and proved to be so unreliable that the engineers were forced to slash the power from an approximate 1700 hp to roughly 1500 hp, which in turn made the Manchester incredibly slow for a plane of that size and also disliked by its crews, as the unreliable engines, although worked over again, were prone to bursting into flames, especially when crews tried to pull up after the shallow-angle attacks that the Manchester had supposedly been designed to do. The losses and accidents from this cause proved to be so high that the practice was abandoned even before Harris took over Bomber Command. He privately stated that the Manchester was a shame for the RAF, but the lack of another aircraft forced him to keep it in Service. However, Avro was so ashamed by the plane that they took it back into development and tried to find ways to make it a combat-worthy aircraft. It was clear that the R-R Vulture engines had to be replaced, and so the quest for a new engine began. Fate would have one of it's strange quirks, when leading engineer of the Manchester team, Roy Chadwick, met fellow designer R.J. Mitchell at an Air Ministry conference in January 1940, and the two men got talking. Legend has it that Mitchell, just having received the contract for developing a follow-up of the Spitfire Mk. IIC that was then just entering service with Fighter Command, had just previously talked with the representatives for Rolls-Royce, and decided that an introduction could be helpful for Chadwick. After a few minutes of idle chatter, it became clear that the Rolls-Royce Merlin X could be easily adapted for use in heavier Aircraft. However, as it was less powerful than the Vulture it would replace, the 'new' plane would need four engines instead of only two. The first prototype, Manchester III BT308, flew for the first time in August that same year. It would, with a few alterations, prominently the removal of the third tailfin, enter service as the Avro Lancaster in June 1942.

In the meantime however, a replacement for the Manchester needed to be found, and after several 'heated' discussions between Harris's Staff and the Air Ministry in early 1940, it was decided to adopt the Handley Page Halifax as the main strategic Bomber. Born out of the same specification as the Manchester, but it was initially cancelled when the Manchester was adopted. When it became clear to the owners that the Manchester would probably fail, the work on the Halifax was re-started as a private venture. The main difference to the initial design of the Halifax was now that the company started out with four engines instead of two, as the initially intended R-R Vulture was now out of the question. Just like Chadwick at Avro, the Halifax Designers went in search of an engine, and found it in the Bristol Hercules XVI radial engine. They were quickly fitted into the incomplete Halifax prototype, and soon the plane was test-flown. Air Vice Marshal Harris was in attendance, and soon the plane began to re-equip the squadrons of Bomber Command, with the first combat action being flown on the night of 5th May 1940, in a raid against the industrial quarters outside of Berlin. The Halifax served admirably for almost three years, carrying the main burden of the Empire's efforts to carry the war to the enemy in the dark days of 1940 and early 1941.


However, in 1941, on the 7th December to be exact, Avro unveiled what would eventually become the stereotypical piston-engined mid-war Bomber: The Avro Lancaster. The development of the Manchester III BT308 had taken three years to become a workable aircraft, from it's first flight in 1940. Development problems and the general lack of urgency in the program had delayed it all significantly, but when it finally took to the air for the first time, the result was stunning. Harris, once again in attendance, is said to have remarked “We finally found our bloody bomber!”. The Lancaster quickly became the primary heavy bomber. Incredibly loved by it's crews, the Lancaster made over 156,000 sorties, hitting precision targets all over Axis Europe. However, it is almost more famous for the duty it did outside it's normal field, with the Special duties group of the RAF from late May 1942 onwards. The group was formed out of the even then already famous 617 Squadron and the newer 618 Squadron. Both had flown the Mosquito until then, but the group was given the first full Squadron of production Lancasters, but also retained 617 Squadrons original Mossies, which thus became the only Squadron in RAF history to be fully equipped with two planes at the same time, although it would never again fly a mission with the latter. The most famous mission was the Dambusters raid, carried out in August 1943, but the Lancaster also carried out many other missions over Germany and later the Soviet Union, the Lancaster's second most famous mission brought it the dubious honour of being the first Atomic Bomber, when a special high-speed Lancaster of 617 Squadron dropped the first Atomic Bomb.

By 1945 however it became once again clear that a new Bomber was needed, and once again Avro had the right idea, but too little time, but Roy Chadwick plucked something from the back of a filing cabinet that had slumbered there for some months: The Avro Lincoln, which entered service in early 1945, a stripped out and unarmed high-speed, high-altitude version serving as Britain's first Nuclear Bomber only to be replaced by the Vickers Valiant. Despite the slow-down of development after the end of the war, Avro continued to work on what would eventually become the Avro Vulcan. The Vulcan and the Valiant were developed and approved at the same time, but the cheaper and less revolutionary Valiant was more easily to produce and entered service earlier. But in 1950 the Vulcan finally flew and a limited production run was ordered to supplement the Victor in service with Bomber Command. However, in the mid 1950s the RAF switched from the slow, high-level attacks of World War Two vintage to low-level high-speed attacks with free-fall bombs, and the Victor proved to be prone to premature metal fatigue, while the Vulcan excelled at this role. Production was geared up, and soon the Vulcan formed the mainstay of Britain's nuclear deterrent, a role which she would fill out in various variants until the early 1990s, with the Mk.III replacing the earlier versions when the doctrine of short-range stand-off missiles was adopted in 1964, with the Blue Steel Missile entering service later that same year.

Development for a successor began as early as 1965, but at the time it seemed as if the nuclear deterrent on both sides of the iron curtain would shift towards missiles, as the Americans were pouring funds into the development of the first true ICBM, a derivative from the Atlas Space booster used for their Space Programme. Labour PM Harold Wilson decreed that Britain had to follow the same strategy, and made moves to abolish Bomber Command. However this, along with his plans of folding the Admiralty into the Ministry of Defence, the cancellation of the sixth Lion Class Battleship, and his supposed intention to also abolish the term 'British Empire' produced a public outcry that reverberated throughout the global reaches of the nation, which would eventually force him from Office as the party recognized that he became a political liability. Development was slowed down, and project LBIIa did not emerge in a recognizable form until 1975, but once again at seemed as if the Strategic Bomber was to become a part of the pages of history only that this time the scarce came from a new type of submarine proposed by the RN and the American People's Navy, called a boomer, that would carry atomic missiles and fire them close from the enemy coast. However this also went away with the 1980 Nuclear Delivery Systems Treaty ( banning ICBMs once and for all), and in 1981 the LBIIa took to the air. Soon Bomber Command accepted the plane and named it Lancaster II. After further troubles with the sophisticated variable-geometry wings, despite all the previous experience with the Lightning Mk.VIII and the Tornado, and life-prolinging measures for the Vulcan delayed the project, and only in 1988 would the first be delivered to the Squadrons. Today the men and women of RAF Bomber Command form the Empire's nuclear deterrent, constantly on watch, hoping that they are never called to do their duty. The heavy bomber, often decried as a waste of money when cheaper missile technology was available, but the recall ability and it's ability to evade countermeasures have proven to be the convincing arguments for Air Forces all over the world.


 
Last edited:

Griffin.Gen

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Oooh, Lancasters!
But I still like the good-old Spitfires, mmmyes. ;)
 

humancalculator

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Well, the Poles held on for an extremely long time.........

.....*sigh* thing were just to good to last though. :(


Considering that this is a long AAR, I truly wonder how many intermissions you are going to have. :D

You write them very good.....I almost feel like it is an OTL history entry in an encyclopedia.

Good Job. :D
 

Kurt_Steiner

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So no Stirling fooling around. Perhaps a B-24 instead?

BTW. I knew that the "Lanc 2" was fated to appear, I knew it.

[...] Avro continued to work on what would eventually become the Afro Vulcan.
I'm going to abstain to make questions about the hairstyle of the crews of the Vulcan bombers.:D
 

trekaddict

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Griffin.Gen Well, they are powered by the same engine, and they are both symbols of British Aviation genius. :D


humancalculator I am amazed myself for how long they held Warsaw. I expected them to collapse even faster than OTL.

I only use intermissions to bridge over long gaps where nothing much happens in the game. I glad you like them though.

Kurt_Steiner No B-24 either. I'll ask MI6 about what the Spams are doing in that area, but from what the Canadians report they are still using B-17s. The Halifax is NOT named after a certain politician, but rather a town in Yorkshire. The Lanc II is a product of the times just before I started this AAR, when I was scouring the web for pictures, and a mate send me this gem. Apparently in RL the RAF once considered buying the B1B Lancer.

Also, the typo has been corrected.
 
Aug 15, 2008
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Yeah! Book Two!

I saw a cool and awesome Lancaster there. But my heart still remains with my beloved Dassault Mirage IV :p

Dassault Mirage IV
 

El Pip

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An excellent intermission, much to look forward to post war it seems. Not just the obvious but a few other tit bits in there, the Lightning Mk.VIII and a Cold War with the Commie US. I do hope you carry this on after the end of the HOI2 game, you appear to have so much mapped out it would be a shame to waste it. :D
 

trekaddict

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gaiasabre11 Ugh, French! :mad:

:p


El Pip I have it mapped out, and I will use it one day, rest assured.
 

unmerged(85800)

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yep, a very cool intermission. i had forgotten this was an alternate history, and was just reading it as fact until i saw the bit about the first nuke and had to double-take. nice insights into the future, too.
 

Lord Strange

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Nuke has to be dropped at some point, dark days of 40s and 41, DAMBUSTERS! oh and no nuclear subs, so the dterrent remains in the hands of the RAF. Oh ,look Harold Wilson doing badly, Im shocked :p
 

trekaddict

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BritishImperial Happy to help.

Lord Strange Hehe. The deterrent stays where it belongs.


The actual Dambusters raid will take place, but I won't actually write it down, but these two Squadrons will appear, rest assured.
 

Enewald

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Omg, book 2.... I die from the pain! :p
I wish I would... :(

Too much british imperialism...
 

unmerged(85800)

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... an alien concept to me. too much british imperialism?
 

trekaddict

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