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Bloody Revenge

0500 July 11th 1944
6. Armee Headquarters, Beltsy, Romania

Von Manstein did not want to waste manpower and bullets over a theatre that was near the brink of collapse, but he had to divert Soviet forces to where he wanted. Beltsy was one of those points, as it would probably relieve Heeresgruppe Mitte some pressure.​

015-1-Beltsy.jpg

He ordered von Brauchitsch to attack the eight divisions in Beltsy. He would call off the attack as soon as enough Soviet reinforcements were diverted to help the defenders in Beltsy.​

1100 July 11th 1944
2. Armee Headquarters, Slonim, Poland

The attack in Beltsy did not discourage the Soviets from commencing operation in the North. General Straube would be the first to face the brunt of the Soviet attack, and would retreat to the safer marshes of Bielsk.​

015-2-Slonim.jpg

German generals were starting to question the stability of the Front.​

0500 July 12th 1944
3. Unterseebootsflotte, Central Bay of Biscaya

Some good, but at the same time worrying, news came from Western Europe. Grand Admiral Raeder spotted four unescorted British transport flotillas. This was an easy prey for Raeder's submarines, but this also meant the British wanted another beachead in France.​

015-3-Biscay.jpg

Two of them would see the bottom of the sea.​

1200 July 12th 1944
16 Armee Headquarters, Jekaplis, Baltic States

After almost one month without fighting, Field Marhsal Busch's divisions were now well-equipped and ready for battle. He hoped he could continue this break, but this changed on July 12th as the Soviets pushed forty divisions towards the thirteen German ones.​

015-4-Jekapils.jpg

Only Hitler would tell him to fight against such odds. He was immediately ordered to retreat.​

015-5-WilnoLost.jpg

At 1900 hours on that day the Soviets occupied Wilno. Von Rundstedt wasted no time ordering a counter-attack.​

015-6-Wilno.jpg

One lone Soviet division experienced 28:1 odds. It was rare to see such events in 1944, and this was one of those rare days.​

015-7-WilnoWin.jpg

Six hours later, that division realized it was time to retreat.​

0500 July 13th 1944
II. SS-Panzerkorps, Bourges, France

Chief of Army Julius Ringel took a trip to France and was now talking to Hausser.

"General Hausser, the time has come to teach those Americans a lesson they won't forget with ease. Make sure you strike hard and fast: the old fashioned Blitzkrieg way."

"I couldn't hear better words, herr Ringel. I have devised this simple but effective plan; take a look at this map."​

015-8-Retaliate.jpg

"Twenty-eight divisions will mop-up those two American divisions actually residing in Auxerre. The Americans will be urged to call up reinforcements; our forces will gladly dispose of such divisions that might want to venture in Auxerres; our bombers will target them and bomb them to death. The following day I will lead a two-pronged attack towards Orléans.

Once Orléans is secured, we will attack the forces in Le Mans with those twenty-eight division plus the ten defending Tours. To prevent Allied reinforcements, a diversionary attack will be called out from Le Havre to Argentan .When also Le Mans is taken, we will push West and capture Angers and Avranches, or Rennes, so to split American forces in two pockets: an estimate of twenty divisions will be isolated in the Caen-Argentan area; the other pocket will be in Cholet and surrounding zones. The weakest pocket will be destroyed first, then the rest will be dealt in time.

Therefore, we have one primary objective and one primary way of going towards it: reach the sea to split the Americans; do not get bogged down in long battles. Quick must be the adjective of the battles that will soon follow."

"It looks daring and ambitious at the same time, Hausser. Do you think you have enough forces to carry out this plan? Can you also afford to achieve total air superiority?"

"Air superiority is almost uncontested. Our forces have also rested enough and have received enough reinforcements to sustain an offensive. This plan is bold and risky, I know, but I think we must strike quickly before the Americans take the initiative again."

"It makes enough sense, Hausser. I hope you can achieve those two big encirclements, albeit risky. What worries me most is the fact that plans often tend to disgregate once they reach contact of reality. I hope you have taken into account all the variables that may alter the plan's course."

"I did herr Ringel, and I must tell you that I'm not certain of a positive outcome. But we can't afford otherwise."

Ringel did not want to add more doubts. He reckoned that this gamble on the West was the only way of escaping doom for Germany.

"Then that's it and we're agreed, general Hausser. Alea iacta est."​
 

Karelian

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DvD-IT said:
Bloody Revenge
"Then that's it and we're agreed, general Hausser. Alea iacta est."

Indeed, if this operation succeeds the Western Allies are in dire trouble - but do you have enough forces to prevent them from counter-attacking and encircling your attacking forces? Great AAR, it actually lured me to test this mod since a 1944-scenario with longer combat sounded like a nice challenge.
 
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Are you sure you'll be able to bomb more than 2 divisions out of existence? If not it's probably your best bet to just attack Orleans and encircle Auxerre.
 

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Alea Iacta Est indeed.

The fate of Third Reich is in question now.
 

Kurt_Steiner

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Gentlemen... are you even doubting that "Papa" Hausser is going to achieve it?

please...








Please, Hausser, don't fail us!!!!


:D
 

Kurt_Steiner

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Fernando Torres said:
Alea jacta East... :rofl:
Alea jacta West, in fact... :p
 

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Karelian - Thanks. Long battles are indeed a huge difference. I think my forces have rested enough to face the Americans. I would of course stop any attack and fall back if things don't go the way I want and risk a counter-attack, or even worse, an encirclement.

Folgore80 - I hope so indeed. Things are not certain.

HKslan - I don't want to bomb them out of existance. I just want my bombers to lure enemy divisions while in combat, which in the long run does pay off. Encircling those divisions would be possible in vanilla, but in this mod it is very unlikely to happen, as battles last much longer, and thus the defending force has much more time to reinforce his defense with his surrounding divisions.

EvilSanta - ...and that of my plausibility :)

BoemsiBoemsie - Thank you, I will need lots of it.

Update time.
 

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Bloody Revenge

1200 July 13th 1944
Auxerre, France

The Wehrmacht commenced an offensive in the West; and its first true battle would be an easy one. The two divisions guarding Auxerre would be defeated after nine hours of fight.​

016-1-AuxerreWin.jpg

American reinforcements would not make it in time before German divisions occupy the province.​

1800 July 13th 1944
Eastern Front

Brest Litovsk was under attack again. The four badly mauled German divisions would hold anyways after intense hours of struggle.​

016-2-LitovskAttack.jpg


016-3-PinskCounter.jpg

An attack would be carried out in Pinsk so to relieve the defenders. It would succeed.​

0600 July 14th 1944
Orléans, France

After one night of rest, Hausser continued his offensive. Orléans would be his next target. At start, it was defended by only three American divisions.​

016-4-OrlansAttack1.jpg

Ten hours after, seven divisions had already arrived and more were coming for sure. But even with this flow of reinforcements, General Behlendorff was humiliating his adversary with an encirclement.​

016-5-Battlesorlans1.jpg

The battle would be long and full of problems anyways for the Germans, and another day would pass without any real breakthrough.​

2000 July 15th 1944
The skies above the English Channel

Luftwaffe interceptors were busy clearing the skies for the offensive.​

016-6-Air1.jpg

They had now found another prey.​

016-7-Orlans.jpg

An hour later, two more divisions helping the battle efforts and another change of command aided the Americans, as he managed to afford a tactical withdrawal. It wasn't really going the way Hausser wanted, but at least Germany was winning this battle of attrition, as his forces were not losing organization or strenght, while his enemy was, albeit slowly.​
 

Kurt_Steiner

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Das Monty ist kommt!

Interesting change in command...
 

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Kurt_Steiner said:
Das Monty ist kommt!

"Ist gekommen", more grammatically correct. ;)



Let's hope the offensive doesn't wear down before it get's even really started
 

Kurt_Steiner

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EvilSanta said:
"Ist gekommen", more grammatically correct. ;)

I had my doubts about it... At least I haven't missed the "ist" :D
 

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EvilSanta said:
"Ist gekommen", more grammatically correct. ;)



Let's hope the offensive doesn't wear down before it get's even really started


That's what I was thinking. My first thought about it when reading that update was: "Wow, he's ambitious."
 

Winner

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Longer battles make it much more difficult to achieve breakthrough and encircle the enemy. Especially when you fight an enemy with highly mobile forces - they usually quickly send reinforcements.
 

DvD-IT

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EvilSanta - The Allies seem to have no potential on counterattacking. It will still take a lot of time to close the Western theater once for all, however, and such divisions are desperately needed in the Eastern front.

trekaddict - Who, me or Hausser? :p

Winner - You hit the nail in the head. This is perhaps the most irritating thing about long battles - they won't ever end. This is especially the case of the AI, which never retreats his divisions till they drop dry on organization, and battles last forever even to ditch that last 0.1% needed to win the battle.

Update.
 

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Bloody Revenge

0500 July 16th 1944
16. Armee Headquarters, Jekapils, Lithuania

Playing cat and mouse with the Soviets was not always possible; this time, Field Marshal Busch would be able to cripple several armored and motorized divisions of the Soviet Armed Forces.​

017-1-Jekaplis.jpg

Eight divisions out of the game for some time was not really a big difference for the ever-fledging Eastern front, but whatever could delay the Soviets was always welcome on the Germans' part.​

0900 July 16th 1944
5. Panzerarmee Headquarters, Orléans, France

West seemed like a good word to the Wehrmacht. West they did fall back right after the deportation of Hitler; West was now their target against the Americans. West, this time, was named Orléans. Montgomery managed to pull a counter-attack with his twelve tired divisions. Nevertheless, the Germans were bogged down in this battle. Casualties on the Allied side were mounting however, and their organization was slowly faltering, while German forces were once again almost untouched. As an added benefit, the Americans had no other divisions to spare to save Orléans. Those would probably seal the fate of Operation Overlord.​

017-2-Orlans.jpg

The Allied fate, that is.​

1000 July 16th 1944
16. Armee Headquarters, Jekapils, Lithuania

Twenty-one more Soviet divisions arrived in Jekapils. Busch still had a large advantage, but he didn't want to wear down his divisions. Such battles could last for weeks and cost the fate of an entire Army Group. Such was the case of Stalingrad, and he wasn't going to fight a battle over a piece of land.​

017-3-Jekaplis.jpg

The arrival of more and more Soviet divisions were, however, threatening Heeresgruppe Nord too.​

1200 July 16th 1944
II. Armeekorps Headquarters, Suwalki, Poland

The Soviets occupied Grodno. Usual business was being carried out to try and delay the continue arrival en masse of Soviet forces.​

017-4-Grodno.jpg

General Cochenhausen would emerge victorious four hour after.​

017-5-GrodnoWin.jpg

Orders were to not pursue them, as usual.​

0200 July 17th 1944
Foreign Ministry department, Reichstag building, Berlin

Oil stockpiles were shrinking at an alarming rate. With the new offensive in the Western front, oil was now needed by tanks and the whole Luftwaffe.​

017-6-Oil.jpg

Von Ribbentrop satisfied this thirst for oil for some more days.​

0900 July 17th 1944
5. Panzerarmee Headquarters, Orléans, France

As dawn arose on a new day, German troops were fighting their third day in a battle against decisively obstinate American divisions. Hausser did not like the unfolding of this battle as it was not matching his timetable. American stubbornness to not give up their territory and hold the Germans at all costs was making them pay an enormous toll on lives, however.​

017-7-Orlans.jpg

Still, it wouldn't be a walkover for the Wehrmacht.​
 

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Bloody Revenge

1800 July 18th 1944
South Bay of Biscaya

Rear Admiral Donner spotted one English transport flotilla. They were once again trying to land somewhere in France.​

018-1-Transport1.jpg

The flotilla would escape the U-boote alive, that time.​

2000 July 18th 1944
18. Armee Headquarters, Riga, Latvia

018-2-RigaRetreat.jpg

Von Manstein and Von Rundstedt decided to meet each other to discuss about the situation in the Eastern front; Von Rundstedt could not abandon his command to meet von Manstein as he was actively needed in the front those days: Riga was under attack.

Artillery shells could be heard outside, but the two were safe in a bunker.

"Erich, I'm sure the Soviets are planning a huge offensive against Heeresgruppe Mitte. Heeresgruppe Nord is almost untouched - and thus we saved a lot of lives and materials - but we can't hold for long in the North either. I think there's only one way to get out of this, and I need you to approve it." Von Rundstedt was in an evident state of nervousness.

Von Manstein already knew what was the proposition of his colleague, but he asked nevertheless "Well Gerd, it looks clear we have a really unconfortable situation in the East, despite our dealying maneuvers. What is your say on the matter?"

"The plan is simple. I will not only abandon Riga, but also fall back all the way to Königsberg. Heeresgruppe Nord will become, so to speak, more like a huge attachment to Heeresgruppe Mitte rather than have a whole front all to its own."

Von Manstein did not think he would retreat to that extent. He was indeed the advocate of the elastic defense doctrine, but not even him would retreat all the way almost to Berlin and call it 'elastic defense'. Von Rundstedt, instead, had this very exact opinion, and after a brief thought, Von Manstein realized it was afterall the only thing to do to shorten the line even further and aid Heeresgruppe Mitte. While he was thinking, Von Rundstedt laid a map portraying his sector on a table.

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Von Manstein looked at the map and it confirmed his thoughts "I must say, Gerd, that you are right. We need a tight front, and even tighter divisions. I too sense that the Soviets will strike hard against Heeresgruppe Mitte, and that's not too difficult to understand as we have several gaps there and very understrenght divisions. It is a miracle that they haven't attacked yet - partly thanks to our diversive maneuvers perhaps - but this doesn't mean they won't ever attack en masse. Instead, the longer they don't, the more it sounds like quiet before the storm."

"I was sure you'd agree with me. Alas, the situation is dire, and dire are the measures we need to take. I hope the Western offensive goes well, at least; I hear Hausser has some of the best equipped divisions in the whole Wehrmacht, lucky him. He'll cry to come back to France when he joins this theatre of hell."

"Given that he'll ever succeed to leave France, Gerd..." Von Manstein has never been the optimistic kind of guy. Five years with Hitler didn't really help his optimism, nor did his dismissal in March 1944. But now he was in charge again. They could perhaps change the tide of the war, once again.​

0300 July 20th 1944
5. Panzerarmee Headquarters, Orléans, France

The Battle of Orléans entered its sixth day. German commanders were stunned to see American divisions over the brink of collapse holding ground for so many days.​

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A local breakthrough did little to change things. But a feeling of defeat was slowly growing inside the ranks of the American divisions, not just of Orléans, but of France.​

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Another day would mark further signs of deterioration for the American divisions. Some of them were near total disgregation. But they were so tenacious to hold for so many days against a so well-equipped enemy.​

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All af this while Luftwaffe bombers have been unloading their payload for six days non-stop. The American High Command surely had to distribute a lot of medals when that battle would see an end.​

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In the early hours of July 23rd, Hausser started thinking if it was either his enemies' troops too tenacious, or his own troops too fearful to advance. Or, either Hitler was now among the ranks of the American commanders, or those soldiers were some sort of fanatical war machines.​
 
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