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Mar 15, 2009
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Allies & Comintern
UK – El Duck
USA – Evil Overlord
USSR – desev
Nationalist China – Liberty
India – Gogopher

Germany – Mr_B0narpte
Japan – Feuerschwanz
Italy – Lord Jarski
Manchukuo (Vichy France) – Viper

Hey all!

We have started - and now finished - a 1936 grand campaign using Lord Jarski’s brilliant mod. His mod can be found here

Please click below for the updates for:-

We have a set of rules that aim to avoid any gamey tactics and to have a historically focused game. For those eager beavers, please see our ruleset here:-


1. Units to be disbanded must be in supply, not adjacent to enemy controlled provinces and at full organisation. Units in a pocket or about to be cannot be disbanded. If there is any question about a forming pocket, the player who wishes to disband the units must pause and get a reading from the other players.

2. No form of unit stealing is allowed. Annexed countries units are gone for good to include all land, sea and air units. The only two exceptions are UK expeditionary forces and some ships that revert to an allied country when the owning country is annexed.

3. Expeditionary forces are not allowed except for the UK. See specific UK rules for details. AI countries may only be controlled via military control.

4. It is forbidden to move ships directly from port to port and coast to coast. Ships moving between ports must enter at least one sea zone. This includes transporting units - you cannot load units onto a transport ship (TP), and then have that unit move to another land province without having the TP first move into a sea province. This ban also applies to shipping land units via a TP to neighboring provinces without the TP first moving into a sea province.

5. You cannot deploy land or coastal forts in a province that is under attack.

6. When attacking a province, you cannot rest your main attack force at 23:00 only to continue shortly after 0:00. You have to either cancel the attack completely or continue the full attack until victory/defeat.

7. Units can only be ordered to fight to the death (victory or valhalla) if they belong to player controlled nations. The same applies to the use of scorched earth tactics.

8. Any AI nation DOWed by more than one alliance (including any non aligned powers not yet in their future "alliance) must be left without any kind of MC.

9. A defending play can declare his capital an open city provided that he has no units within or adjacent to the capital and no units between the capital and the enemy. Once the capital is declared an open city the attacker must directly move a unit to occupy the capital thus forcing the capital to relocate.

10. If a player controlled country DOWs a minor non-aligned nation they must make an honest effort to conquer said country.

11. Paratroopers are allowed with the following restrictions:

a. Paratroopers may not be used to block retreats. This means that they may not be dropped in provinces behind front line units in battle or about to be attacked where their presence might block a possible line of retreat.

b. Paratroopers may be dropped on any costal province to include provinces with a beach. If the non-beach province is captured and becomes controlled by the dropping unit, a single division can be landed from transport waiting off shore each 24 hours for the first two days. After 2 days there is no limit on the amount of units that can be landed. If the non-beach province is a port, the attacking player can land the number of units equal to the pre attack level of the port plus one each 24 hours, for the first two days. After 2 days there is no limit on the amount of units that can be landed. There is no limit on provinces containing beaches.

c. Players attacking a province with a paratrooper must retreat the paratrooper if requested by the defender in order to allow a reinforcing unit to reorg or defend against another attack.


12. Players of major countries may not switch either land or naval doctrines until after Danzig.
13. Players of minors may switch land and naval doctrines at any time.


coups/partisans may not be used.


15. Players are forbidden to run on 0 supplies. If some unforeseen event or situation causes supplies to drop to 0, players must take action to return to a positive balance immediately even if this means reducing production to nil.
16. Rockets are not allowed. However, rockets are allowed for the sole purpose of nuclear bombing.
17. Province builds:
a) Rocket & nuclear test sites must be built province specific.
b) Synthetic plants (oil & rares), AAs, radars, forts can be built in a non prov-specific way and stockpiled if desired.
c) Ports and air bases can be stockpiled and be deployed as needed in in a player's home country or annexed country or to the home or annexed country of an ally. They may also add to existing bases in provinces either they or an ally have captured. The first port or airbase in a newly captured province must be built by the province specific method.


18. All trades must be at least at 100% of market value (i.e. on the screen it has 100% accept chance when asking for resources - as in $1 for 3 rares or thereabouts) and remain so until both countries are in the same alliance or at war with the same player controlled country. Free trades are allowed after either of these conditions are met.
19. The use of "open negotiations" for trading resources is limited after Danzig for nations at war or trading with a nation at war and located overseas from each other. There are two exceptions to this rule:

a. Resources can be requested when giving blueprints to ai nations.

b. After 30 September 1939, an overseas player that wants to trade resources via open negotiations can do so if there has been ongoing trade via convoy with the target nation and no convoy ship on that route has been sunk for the past month. Once done, the player will have to wait another month & fully satisfy the first sentence of this rule before using Open Negotiations for trading resources with that target nation again.

20. A puppet master may only trade $ or supplies for the resources the puppets need to supply their industry or are willing to pay in exchange for blueprints. A puppet master may not manipulate trades with a puppet so as to force the puppet to go to a minus position in either supplies or money. As long as a puppet holds above 2500 $ or supplies, this restriction does not apply.
21. A puppet master is allowed to request edit of one insignificant province from the puppet to him, with the intention of allowing the puppet to send resources to master.
22. Players may manually control their convoys by turning off the automated convoy system. If under manual control it cannot be used for monkey business such as creating a single mass convoy to avoid raiders.


23. Non-historic, and historically premature, alliances are not allowed, except where specifically said below. After 30 August 1939 there are no restrictions on alliances with AI nations.
24. Non-historical, and historically premature, declarations of war are not allowed, except where specifically said below. After 30 August 1939 this restriction is completely removed, except where specifically stated below.
25. Unit trading or selling via is banned.
26. The granting of Military access to any nation is banned, unless it is done via event.
27. A player can only issue a Guarantee of Independence (GoI) if they, rules permitting, promise to honour it by declaring war on the aggressor within one month. If the rules do not permit a retaliatory declaration of war, then the Guarantee of Independence cannot be made in the first place. This rule does not apply to pre-existing GoIs (i.e. ones that exist at the start of the scenario, or ones created by event).
28. Before joining any alliance at war, you have to declare war on one human controlled member of the opposing alliance beforehand (i.e. USA has to declare war on Germany/Italy/Japan/etc before allying with the UK).
29. Player-to-player agreements must be honored.


Provincial structures include anything that is placed in a specific province and cannot be moved. These builds are not limited to but include such things as forts, airbases, ports and reactors. AAs are the only exception and have no limitations, neither in home nor allied territory.

30. Any structure built in your own territory must be built to the province directly.

31. Any structure built in Allied territory must be built using a new serial, the serial can be at maximum 10 units long, or fewer, depending on the allied provinces existing structures. Export lines designated for a specific province must be deleted if that province is lost to the enemy or if the maximum level of the structure is achieved.


32. The game will continue until at least one major Capital falls or everyone agrees to end the game.
33. Any discussion of a Cold War must go on the presumption the Axis will fight to the bitter end; i.e. the Allies & Comintern have to clandestinely talk about a post war world. A public discussion can only take place once one of the situations outlined in the rule above has been met.

Rules for specific nations


Allied players are allowed to load up France between sessions to monitor the country. No changes to the ai TECH or build queue are allowed. Edits may be requested to correct trades.


1. After the Marco Polo bridge event, China can declare war on neighboring AI nations in Asia that are not part of, or puppets of, either the Allies or Comintern. Portuguese Macau or Timor will not be counted as neighboring provinces.
2. Before at least one war against Japan, China may not join any alliance while Japan remains at peace with all other player controlled nations.
3. Once Japan is at war with another player controlled nation, China can then join the alliance of that country. China must leave such alliance at the end of the war. Only exceptions would be joining freely any alliance if China is under attack again or if China has a communist government, with the latter case allowing China to remain in the Soviet alliance.
4. Chinese will be limited to the range defined in the attached maps. This rule applies both before and after the fall of China.
5. Republic of China can have military control edited in over Communist China once both nations are at peace with one another. Should this happen, Republic of China cannot attack Communist China until Japan is defeated by either the Comintern or Allies. If China falls to the Axis, China can no longer have military control of any nations outside of its alliance, unless this is agreed by all players (ie a China outside of the Axis but still allied to Japan might want to have military control over Hungary/Romania etc to help out)
6.Republic of China can attack any of the following nations from the start of the game: Shanxi, Xibei San Ma, Yunnan, Guangxi Clique and Tibet.
7.Republic of China can take any of the following nation's armies as expeditionary forces: Guangxi Clique, Yunnan, Shanxi and Xibei San Ma. They also are free to inherit these forces.


1. Germany must go to war via the Danzig or war event on 30 August 1939.
2. Germany must offer the historical Molotov-Ribbentrop pact in the event. The pact must be honored at least until 30 April 1940. The two countries can either honor the historical agreement, or negotiate their own clandestine agreement so long as it does not break any other rule. In case no agreement can be reached the default pact will be as follows:
a. No war between the parties prior to 0001, 1 MAY 40.
b. The Baltic states and Finland are in the sphere of influence of the USSR. They are free to take whatever action deemed necessary.
c. No DOW is allowed on Sweden, Turkey, Romanian, or Bulgaria during the life of the pact( until 1 MAY 40).
3.Germany may be required to declare war on the US if certain conditions exist. Please see US rules for specifics.
4. Should the Germany surrender event trigger (ID number 38), Germany has to accept the surrender.


Hungary can join the Axis via the end of Czechoslovakia event, or anytime from 30 August 1939.


Indian troops will be limited to the range defined in the attached maps, and in the defined maximum (24 divs plus 1 HQ) amount for the extended area.


Asian minors (Siam, Philippines, Indonesians, Pakistan and such kind) are limited to Indian sphere ending in Persia, but also be allowed into Australia/NZ. In the case of "Arabians" this does not apply.


Italy can join the Axis anytime from 30 August 1939.


1. After the Marco Polo bridge event, Japan can declare war on AI nations in Asia that are not part of, or puppets of, either the Allies or Comintern.
2. Japan can join the Axis anytime from 30 August 1939.


1. The UK and its Commonwealth allies are exempt from the ban on expeditionary units In the case of a commonwealth nation being annexed the UK may assume the countries units.
a. Commonwealth nations are Australia, Canada, South Africa, New Zealand, Nepal, Rhodesia/Nyasiland and Newfoundland.
b. Any six free France units led by De Gaulle will be treated as commonwealth nations if and only if they become in danger of annexation. These unit can be assumed by the UK.
c. Any 25 Indian land and any air units will be treated as commonwealth units if and only if India is in danger of being annexed. these units may then be assumed by the UK.
5. The UK must accept fully funded trades with Germany, Italy and Japan until 30 August 1939, provided it has enough resources for itself (i.e. stockpiles of 50k energy and oil, 25k rares and 15k metal and oil). It must prioritize trading with these nations over trading with AI non-allied nations.
6. The UK has to accept the UK surrender event if triggered.


1. The USA must accept fully funded trades with Germany, Italy and Japan, provided they have adequate resources for themselves (i.e. stockpiles of 50 energy, 25k rares, 15kmetal and oil). It must prioritize trading with these nations over trading with AI non-allied nations.
2. The USA must accept fully funded trades with Germany and Italy until either:
* the expiry of the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact
* the fall/annexation of France
3. The USA must accept fully funded trades with Japan until either:
* the oil embargo event
* the fall/ annexation of China
* Japan joins the Axis or declares war on the Allies or Comintern
4. The USA is allowed to perform free trades to any member of the Allies or Comintern once the Lend-Lease event (ID number 3700) has been triggered.
5. The USA can only join the war against the Axis when any of the below conditions are met: Germany will have to declare war on the USA if the US player feels prepared to fight.
* China has fallen and Japan has declared war upon the Allies or the Comintern or joined Axis.
* Axis has invaded the UK mainland (i.e. England, Wales, Scotland & Northern Ireland), Ireland, or North America including Newfoundland.
* Suez, Gibraltar and Persia/Iran has fallen to the European Axis.
* The Axis have invaded the USSR and captured either Moscow, Sverdlovsk, Novosibirsk, Alma-Ata, Tashkent, Semipalatinsk or Kuybyshev.
* Axis has invaded South America, Central America or Caribbean, including Bermuda.
* The date is 7 December 1941.
6. The USA has to accept the USA surrender event if triggered.


1. The USSR must accept the historical Molotov-Ribbentrop pact Germany will offer. The pact must be honoured at least until 30 April 1940. The two countries can either honor the historical agreement, or negotiate their own clandestine agreement so long as it does not break any other rule.
2. The USSR must accept fully funded trades with Germany, Italy and Japan, provided they have adequate resources for themselves (i.e. stockpiles of 50k energy and oil, 25k rares and 15k metal). It must prioritize trading with these nations over trading with AI non-allied nations.
3. The USSR’s trades with Germany and Italy must continue until:
* the expiry of the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact
* the fall/annexation of France
4. The USSR’s trades with Japan must continue until:
* Japan declares war on the Allies
* the fall/ annexation of China
5. The USSR must accept the Bitter Peace event if triggered.


If Spain is player controlled the following rules apply:

1. The human player must chose the Nationalist and must chose option A in the 1936 elections.
2. Spanish units cannot be moved until the Spanish civil war event except as needed to kill partisans.
3. Spanish units can't be named until the post war events are completed.
4. Spain cannot declare war on any country and must join the Axis by the Handaye event.
5. Before the Spanish civil war, Spain must fully fund the first 3 Madid infrastructure and triple speed. They should sleep this build after the first three.
6. Spain must complete the two ships under construction.
7. The human Nationalist player must kill all Spanish Republican land units prior to Annexation.



The following maps indicate where Chinese and Indian units may operate as follows:

24 Indian divisions plus 1 HQ in total-total-maximum in the areas mentioned (shown in the map in Green).
The areas in light blue are those where Indians have no limits on numbers.
The areas shown in purple are the areas where Chinese units may operate. (Chinese units may not leave those areas, as they have no rule giving them any exception).

I will be limiting the information I share to only that which is publicly available given the campaign is still under afoot. However, any if you do have any questions for any players, they (or I) might be happy to answer them privately. Feel free to PM me (or them), or comment below.

All comments are welcome.

Let us begin!


Here is the world at the start of the campaign. There are a lot more nations compared to ‘vanilla’ AoD, a lot more events, a lot of changes to resources to make them much more important and a lot more ‘human-like’ AI to make the game a very enjoyable challenge.


Japan started off proclaiming the beginning of its campaign to liberate Asia from colonialism by liberating the peoples of Taiwan, Marshall Islands, Palau and Micronesia on 2nd January 1936.


Germany remilitarised the Rhineland on 5th January 1936, prompting a boost in military spending by Germany, alongside UK & France in response to this increased militarisation of Europe.

On 2nd March Japan then lent its support to the Mongol Military Government in its Suiyan campaign, where the locals then revolted against the Shanxi government.

On 19th April the Palestinians rose up against British Rule after the UK government decided to suppress the General Arab Strike. This led to many skirmishes if not outright battles between Palestinian partisans and the UK-loyal forces.

Italy, after conquering Ethiopia on 9th July 1936, liberated the area, forming Italian East Africa the same day. At the end of the conflict, 25,155 Ethiopians & 11,353 Italians under-arms had died in combat. 5 Italian bombers, 2 Italian & 10 Ethiopian fighter planes were also shot down during this war.


Just over a week later Spain broke into civil war on 17th July, divided between the Nationalists and Republicans. The internal community got involved, with the Germans, Italians and Portuguese supporting the Nationalists while the French and Mexican governments supported the Republicans. The UK decided not to support the Republican cause, viewing it as anarchist rabble.

Nearing the end of 1936 it was clear who the winner of this bitter conflict would be, with the Republicans cornered in north-eastern Spain.


On 20th July, Turkey organised the Montreux Convention and the remilitarized the Bosphorus.

The Belgian government declared its neutrality on 14th October 1936, leaving its alliance with the UK, France and their partners.

On 24th December 1936, the Nationalist and Communist Chinese governments made peace. As a result, the governments of Shanxi and Yunnan entered an alliance with Kai-shek’s regime while the territory of Guangxi Clique became under his direct control. 23,358 Communist, 7,848 Nationalist & 7,345 Xibei Chinese under-arms had perished in this war.


1936 was also a year of industrialisation by virtually all players, the below shows the increase in IC between 1 Jan 1936 and 28 April 1937.


That now concludes the update for 1936.
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This year also started with people being freed. The British ordered the Raj to give the Burmese people their independence on 2nd January.


On 20th March the people in the Dersim region rebelled against Turkish rule, leading to many skirmishes between Alevi-Zaza clan and Turkish forces.

Sometime between April and July, the Nationalist forces in Spain declared victory as they took the last Republican stronghold in Barcelona. This concluded a brutal war in which nearly 140,000 Spaniards had died both in battle and attrition from the harsh conditions, not counting the civilian casualties and many more countless lives that were changed forever. The peace immediately revealed the devastation caused by war as Spain’s industrial efficiency fell by 15% and is expected to take years to recover.



There was a momentous event in early July on the Marco Polo bridge. It ignited full out war between China and Japan.
As Japan advanced, the Republic of China consolidated the lands under its allies’ control and integrated the Shanxi territory into its regime on 3rd August.

After taking ancient lands, Japan released the people of Mengkukuo on 17th August.

The maps below outline the progression of this conflict through 1937 as Japanese forces, and their allies, grindingly advanced towards the Yellow River. The largest battles were held at Tianjin, Anyang, the Communist China capital of Yan’an and its remaining key province Xianyang. The last province was the only one which held against the Japanese advance as 1937 came to a close.




On the 13th September Italy gave the people of Libya independence.


1937 was a year of moderate industrialisation by all players, with some getting extra technology departments opening up for them as a result. China was the exception, having lost all its territory north of the Yellow river, alongside potentially IC lost to a small amount of partisans caused by internal dissent as some of units were ordered to fight to the death.

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Germany expanded its borders through this year. On 14 March, its’ forces peacefully took over Austria, incorporating it in the Reich. A few months later, on 30 September, the Germans under Czechoslovakian rule proclaimed their true loyalties and became part of the Reich. The UK and French governments responded forcefully by increasing their military production on both occasions.

The USSR meanwhile incurred much dissent as it decided against Stalin's wish to purge much of its military leadership in March. How this will pan out is unclear, but for much of 1938 the Soviet Union was busy quelling dissent throughout its many republics.


The Second Sino-Japanese war became even more bloody as the year progressed.

In January, at major battle ensued for Xianyang where Japanese forces lost 26,378 men while the Chinese lost 13,137, ending in the Chinese holding the fortified mountain. This place was of great strategic importance as without it, the Communist Chinese regime would collapse.

In the same month, the Japanese had great success on China’s coast. They originally attacked Lianyungang and Nantong from the sea. The Chinese, in their rush to defend the provinces, abandoned Qingdao. The Japanese jumped at the opportunity and landed in Qingdao unopposed. Having successfully landed in Qingdao, the Japanese forces proceeded to then take Yantai and Jinan. The battle of Jinan cost over 10,000 lives; 3,841 Japanese & 7,501 Chinese.

In June, the Communist Chinese forces launched at attack on Manchu & Mengu forces in Guyuan. They failed to take the province, and lost 10,340 men in their attacked, whereas the Japan-allied troops lost 11,371 men. The Chinese were able to take back Lianyungang between May-August 1938, before losing it again a little while later.

There was also a major battle over the marshes of Xuzhou after the landing near Qingdao. For months and months Japanese & Chinese forces fought it out. Eventually, the Japanese won and took the province. Shortly after Northern China was declared a separate nation under Japanese tutelage and quickly made best use of the lands under its control.

Xianyang, after months of fighting, finally fell to Japanese forces after the final battle ended on 24 July, where the Japanese forces lost just 60 men and the Chinese 5,715. Presumably, the Republican Chinese forces fought to the death in an attempt to preserve the Communist regime, to little avail.

Around August or September, the Japanese changed their approach and, having made a significant air base in Changzhi, started strategic bombing Chongqing. It quickly was turned to rubble as the Chinese air force could not stop the Japanese tactical bombers, all of which were vastly more modern and some equipped with escort fighters.

This provoked a massive international outcry, with the UK and USSR governments proclaiming violation of international rules 30 and 31. The German government responded by saying Japan had fully complied with rule 17c, which was the only relevant rule on the matter. This led to great debate, with the British and Soviets eventually agreeing. But rules 30 and 31 were then agreed to replace 17c completely, and since then the international law has been changed to avoid future conflicts.

After Japan launched its summer offensive, China was able to reclaim parts of the Xibei lands between August and November 1938.
As 1938 was nearing an end, the Japanese forces tried advancing on the industrial centre of Chongqing one last time. The Chinese forces counter-attacked at Lanzhou, losing 18,918 men at the cost of 13,714 Japanese troops, and were unsuccessful in dislodging them. The Japanese tried to continue their advance in the bitterness of winter, but eventually called off any further offensives after losing in their attack on Ya’an at the cost of 12,298 men; the Chinese lost 13,688 in their successful defence of the mountainous province with so few roads.







The world’s industry has changed significantly in 1938. China had much of its industry bombed to smithereens by Japanese aircraft while the rest of Asia continued to have little industrial development. The opposite can be said for Europe, with Italy especially sticking out for industrialisation, and the UK as it geared up for war, and Germany as it incorporated Austria and the Sudetenland into its burgeoning nation.

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1939 – upto 30 August

Germany surprised the continent after coming out in support of Hjalmar Schacht’s comments on economics, and as a result the nation’s economy moved slightly more towards a free market. This incurred serious dissent among the regime, which was peacefully overcome in the coming months.

Part of this dissent was removed after German forces peacefully occupied the rest of the rump state of Czechoslovakia on 15 March, it offered Slovakia to Hungary, which Admiral Horthy accepted immediately and entered his nation into alliance with Germany. The British and French governments responded by converting more of their industry over to military usage. Memel was taken just 9 days later by Germany from Lithuania in further peaceful growth of the Reich. Poland then entered into an alliance with the UK, France and their allies on 30 March in response to all the German expansion. The UK then went further and guaranteed Greek independence on 6 April; & Romanian on the 7th.

Italy ignited war in Europe after giving King Zog of Albania an ultimatum of annexing Albania peacefully on 26 March. Zog refused, with Italian forces quickly launching an amphibious assault on Tirana, which ended in victory on 30 March, after which Italy forcibly made Albania its puppet state once again on 6 April.

Nationalist Spain joined the Anti-Comintern Pact with Germany, Italy and Japan on 9 April. Germany and Italy entered into a Pact of Steel on 22 May.

Poland shared German state secrets with the UK and France on 25 July after decrypting the German Enigma Machine.

Germany and the USSR surprised the world by entering into a major agreement on 24 August, the result of which was yet unknown….

As the world reached 30 August 1939 it was clear the period had experienced a significant reduction in industrialisation worldwide, apart from the USA which continued to struggle out of the great depression. The reason for Germany’s reduced effective industrial growth was due to change in national ideas as it moved away its focus from industry and more towards manpower.


Second Sino-Japanese War

The new year went off to a flying start for Japan as it launched a new offensive in southern China. It won the battle for Hainan on 20 February, then Zhanjiang on 6 March; Maoming against the forces of Yunnan on 11 March; Nanning on 14 March; Bose on 22 March, 6 & 20 & 25 April; Liuzhou on 27 April; Wenshan on 1 May.

However thereafter Japan’s momentum began to wane, with Chinese forces winning the second & third battles for Liuzhou on 17 May. Kai-Shek’s forces proceeded to gain further victories, at Guiyang on 19 May. Yunnan forces won at Bose on 5 June. The battle of Hengyang ended in Chinese victory on 20 June; and the same again at Liuzhou on 2 July.

However, the momentum now kept swaying back and forth as Japan still had its list of victories during this time:- with the fourth battle of Liuzhou on 22 May, and at Wuzhou on 24 May; and at Tianshui on 1 June; at Guangzhou on 15 June; Xuzhou on 19 & 28 June; Shaoguan on 20 June; Chao'an on the 29th; Bose on 1 July; Nantong on the 5th.

The Republic of China decided to burn Changsha on 19 August as Japan advanced on the city.

The war had taken its toll on Asia, with over 1 million troops killed in the conflict by March 1939, which doesn’t taken into account the millions more troops injured, alongside the countless amounts of displaced people whose lives had been shattered and changes forever. What was to come in the new few months was anyone’s guess…



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Soooo... Is the AAR still going?
It is yeah! We've reached September 1940 and a lot has happened.... Will probably condense the next sections down into : Battle for Poland, Battle for France, Battle for mainland Asia (hint, hint!), and quite a few others!

Will see about uploading the Battle for Poland and France in the coming days.
30 August 1939 to fall of France (just Europe and North Africa)

Battle for Poland

After the Polish government refused Germany’s request for Danzig be returned to its ownership, the Heer attacked. The UK, France and their allies joined the war in Poland’s defence. Quickly, the Germany army stormed towards the River Vistula, behind which lied the Polish army. All of it was defending Warsaw and Lomza, which was flanked by the Rivers Bug and Narew. The Germans advanced on Lublin, Torun, Random and even Bielsk to gain another angle on Lomza.

Epic battles for Warsaw and Lomza then ensued, with Warsaw facing 4 attacking fronts as the Luftwaffe dropped paratroopers into the capital city. Both eventually fell by 12 September 1939, with Poland being annexed soon after. The Battle of Warsaw led to the loss of 33,451 German and 22,397 Polish troops.

Germany lost 55,239 men, 2,126 trucks and 209 tanks with this campaign. The Polish army lost 37,097 men, 119 fighter planes and 47 bombers in return. This showing the deadly nature of urban combat, and the significant benefit granted defenders by encamping behind rivers.

After the campaign, Germany set up the General Government of Poland, with its capital in Cracow, in order to make best use of the significant coal mines in the area.

Battle for France

This campaign started with a massive bombardment by Germany’s railway artillery brigades, with an estimated 18 of such monstrous contraptions devastating Strasbourg; alongside the rapid conquest of Luxembourg. The bombardment quickly destroyed much of the Maginot line and the infrastructure of the city, alongside putting many of the British & French units there into disarray. After attacking, the city fell on 6 September 1939 with the loss of just 2,080 Germans to 3,618 Allied troops; aided partly thanks to the use of paratroopers once again by the Heer. The Germans faced predominantly British forces, with some Canadians and French in support.

After an unsuccessful attack on Chaumont which cost the Germans 7,344 men and 4,206 for the Allies, Germany invaded Belgium on 19 September 1939 to try and find another way to cross the Meuse river. On the same day the Italian government joined the war on the side of Germany, declaring war on the United Kingdom and their allies. It was a very eventful day, as the battle for Metz ended on the 19th too, in German victory at the cost of 12,491 German troops to the Allies’ 20,003.

The attack on Belgium began well for the Axis, with the Battle of Liege ending in their victory within hours, at the loss of 68 Germans to 666 Belgium cavalrymen.

The campaign extended beyond Europe, with Italian forces taking Tunisia from France, and installing a Tunisian government on 6 October 1939. The Italians also had breakthroughs on the French border, eventually taking both Nice and Grenoble and invading the French hinterland. They faced predominantly French forces, but strongly supported by members of the Commonwealth and Empire, with Vietnamese, Lebanese, Iraqi and other forces fighting for the Allies.

Mention should also be made that Lord Jarski was made Supreme Commander of Axis forces in Europe, and for a time in Asia too, as Mr_B0narpte took a step back after much international consternation on paratrooper combat. Feuerschwanz and Viper were not always in attendance during this time, hence why Jarki’s influence extended into Asia, with small help from Mr_B0narpte.

Another German attack on Chaumont ended in defeat on 13 October, with Germany losing 6,990 men to the Allies’ 7,253. The Battle for Reims also ended in Allied victory on 18 October, with them losing 22,341 to the Germans 17,275. Things did not look good for Germany, with its attack on Mulhouse also ending in failure on 13 November, at the loss of 5,102 to the Allies’ 4,937.

However, after much determination and loss of life, the Axis won the third battle of Chaumont on 5 December. The Axis – including Hungarians who had joined in the German & Italian offensive – lost 17,155 to the Allies’ 26,345.

Not all battles were recorded, but after taking Antwerp and advancing into Belgium, the Battle of Lille ended in Allied victory on 23 December, at the cost of 12,446 German troops to 7,702 Allied soldiers.

After endless attacks throughout the winter of 1939/40, German forces took Paris in late January, with the French government quickly turning to peace as British and Commonwealth forces desperately tried to evacuate continental Europe to continue the fight.

On 4 February 1940 the French government surrendered to Germany, with a new – neutral – regime being set up with its capital based at Vichy. All of northern and western France was handed over the German ownership and control.

This had immediate geopolitical consequences, as Madagascar declared its independence as a result, with Syria and Lebanon – previously French puppets – gaining complete independence over their own affairs. Vietnam also declared its independence and made Cambodia and Laos its puppet states. Japan demanded, and got, military access to all 3 of the Indochina states. French general De Gaulle set up a ‘Free French’ government in what part of the collapsing French empire that he could, being the French Congo, to continue the fight against the Axis.




These two campaigns had been particularly deadly for the German army, but not without heavy loss of life of British, French – and a smaller extent – Italian soldiers.

As of 14 February 1940:-



Battle of the English Channel and other naval battles

All while this was going on, fierce naval battles between the Kriegsmarine on one side and the Royal Navy & Marine Nationale on the other were raging just off English and German shores.

The first was at Helgoland Bight on 17 September 1939, where the Allied air force had forced German ships out of port through incessant bombing runs. The Kriegsmarine tried retreating into the safety of the Baltic Sea but was intercepted off the coast and lost a transport ship, with much of its navy being heavily bruised.

The second, after much rest and recovery for the German navy, was at the Mouth of the Thames on 10 December 1939, and pitched over 70 ships against each other.

The third, and final major naval battle, was between 10-11 February 1940. Both times the Allied navies one, but at severe loss of life on both sides. It is believed the British also lost many soldiers alongside seaman as not all were able to escape France after its defeat. It is believed the Germans attacked in order to interfere with Britain’s ability to extract its army, and the Kriegsmarine only engaged when British transport ships were out at sea.

However, by the end of it, it looks like the Royal Navy achieved a strategic victory as its control of the sea remained while the Kriegsmarine was a shell of its existence after the battles.




The Italian Air Force was also used to full affect against the Allied navies in the Mediterranean, which were predominantly French. Their air force also had a very successful bombing run on Malta, as demonstrated below.


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Battle of China and mainland Asia upto 14 February 1940

On 1 September 1939 the USSR shocked the world nearly as much as Germany did just a day before, as it declared war on Japan and its allies. Shortly after, Republic of China joined the Comintern as it, with Yunnan, entered into a military alliance with the USSR and its allies.

The Red Army then quickly advanced on all fronts, going for Manchukuo, Mengukuo and northern China.

Japan tried desperately to knock China out before the Red Army arrived in China, battling for Chongqing which, while ending with China losing 5,686 men to Japan’s 2,224, it also ended in Chinese victory on 7 September. Instead, Japan tries to advance on Nanjing. Winning the Battle of Wuhu on 30 September at the loss of 6,247 to 20,880 Chinese.

However, this was to no avail, with Japan having to quickly abandon its attack on Chongqing and take the long march through the mountains back to the coast for evacuation. There were intense battles for Anyang and Yucheng as the Soviet forces tried cutting off these divisions. Not all survived, but enough were extracted to ensure that Korea was held, alongside Shanghai and parts of Guangxi. Japan created the Guangxi government to make use of all the manpower it could in its attempt to hold whatever it could on mainland Asia.

When France surrendered in Europe, Japan made the most of it in Indochina, demanding and getting military access from the governments of Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam.

However, by 14 February it was clear the Comintern was set to dominate mainland Asia, with Japanese forces holding less then it had in peacetime, losing its valuable Manchukuo puppet, alongside Northern China and Mengukuo.








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Now the game has progressed in quite exciting fashion, and now England is going into a second lockdown, I'll try and bash out some more updates :D
Additional mention

Also, in the time between September 1939 and 14 February 1940, the USSR invaded both Iran and Afghanistan, and quickly formed puppet regimes in both after they quickly surrendered to the Red Army. Iran surrendered on 15 November while Afghanistan did the same on 4 January 1940. Bizarrely, China had declared war on both nations on behalf of the USSR, presumably in a strange attempt to circumnavigate any internal dissent caused by the aggression.

Afghan soldiers killed 291 Soviets for the loss of 2,618 of their own men; while Iranian soldiers brought down 2,160 Soviets at the cost of 3,644 of their own.

The same fate also befell Finland, again after China declared war on 10 November 1939. 30,489 Finnish troops and 6,263 Soviet troops perished in the conflict, which ended on 14 December 1939.

Furthermore, the UK invaded Italian East Africa, and restored Ethiopia as a sovereign state on 21 November 1939. However, they became its suzerain, at least for the duration of the war, to ensure its co-operation.
Post 1940 Valentine’s upto 1941

Having lost nearly 800,000 men Germany went into turmoil on deciding what to do after defeating France. The situation in Asia made it worse, with the Comintern having a firm grip there while Japan lingered on. The two nations had planned for Japan to attack the Dutch East Indies, and then make peace with the Netherlands once Indonesia had been secured. This operation began in March 1940.

However, the international community did not tolerate this aggression, and another debate ensued. The UK government immediately announced it would allow the Dutch government into the allies if it so asked. The Axis immediately condemned this as going against part 28 of the international rules on armed conflict. A significant argument ensued, with myself dropping out of the game in condemnation. Therefore, on 21 March 1940 Viper took over command of Germany.

Please see the change in country selection below, and the dropping out of Gogopher – over a dispute of Italy retaining Tunisia after the fall of France – and to a large extent myself as I relegated myself to the side-lines due to the many contentions.

Allies & Comintern
UK – Evil Overlord (switched during Battle of France)
USA – El Duck (switched during Battle of France)
USSR – desev
Nationalist China – Liberty
India – AI/ subbed by Evil Overlord

Germany – Viper (took over)
Japan – Feuerschwanz
Italy – Jarski
Various Axis nations – Mr_B0narpte (became more of a spectator)

And so the war continued…

To settle the dispute, Viper immediately ordered German forces to attack the Netherlands on their home soil and so Japan ended up being at war with the Allies as the Netherlands went to them for protection on 22 March 1940. This call for help went unheeded, as Germany & Japan proceeded to annex them, with Germany then carving up the Benelux into the puppet regimes of Flanders and Wallonia while Japan created the satellite state of Indonesia on 1 April. Australia responded to all this by occupying Portuguese East Timor on 23 March. The Allies quickly deployed Indian mountaineering divisions to defend the area but were defeated by invading Japanese units from West Timor on 25 August, for the loss of 1,041 men to the Japanese 189.

To compensate for the devastating loss of life from the Battle of France, Germany called to arms the Walloon, Flemish and Breton peoples as they formed satellite states in all three regions.

The USSR invaded Latvia and Estonia on 27 March. A day later, Germany invaded Yugoslavia. Estonia was annexed on 6 April, Latvia on the 11th. The campaign for Yugoslavia was bloodier, lasting until Italy annexed it on 14 May 1940. The Regia Marina was able to add the Dalmacija to its fleet as part of the spoils of war. Germany set up the puppet state of Croatia on 16 May.

Germany, Italy and Japan formalised the Tripartite Pact on 16 May.



War in Asia & the Pacific and Indian Oceans

With Japan now at war with the Allies, its targets grew exponentially. Sarawak was taken on 7 April, Brunei on the 16th.

It was then able to annex Australia on 9 May 1940, and immediately installed a puppet regime there. It achieved the same success with New Zealand just 4 days later, installing a satellite state for the two islands on 13 May 1940. However the UK did not take this sitting down, with counter-invasions occurring across Australia, with the campaign for the island going on for many more months. For instance, the British Army took Perth in July, only to lose the Japanese counterattack for it on 5 August. They lost 9,673 men to the Japanese 271. The Royal Navy also took casualties, losing a light cruiser and destroyer two days prior as the IJN engulfed them.

There was also much more fighting, both at land and at sea, as the pictures below detail. Fighting around and for the Diego Garcia island was particularly fierce, especially as, after capturing it, Japan had the potential to build air and naval bases to threaten more of the British Empire. The UK attacked the island on 13 October and 17 November, with Japanese & Indonesian forces holding their ground. 1,884 Japanese & Indonesian soldiers died in the first battle, 1,402 in the second while British casualties numbered 3,258 and 1,688, respectively. The UK was able to secure the Indonesian island of Sumatra, holding off against a Japanese offensive to recapture it.

The IJN scored a minor success in the Gulf of Mannar as a scouting light cruiser spotted and sunk a British transport ship before running away from Royal Navy on 16 July.

The Japanese also took the island of Ceram on 5 September for the loss of 187 men to the UK’s 2,257. They had attacked it two days prior, however they lost that battle as 1,430 Japanese & 2,771 British soldiers perished.

The Comintern responded with their own expansion, with China declaring war on Nationalist Vietnam on 7 April; Tibet on 12 May. The government of Vietnam, since it had no international backing, eventually made a peace deal, and became a satellite state of China, with Vietnam retaining its suzerainty over Cambodia and Laos. Tibet did not share the same fate, with it being incorporated into China itself by force. Thailand was also invaded by the Comintern, becoming a Chinese puppet in September 1940.









Operation Barbarossa

After consolidating their position in western Europe, Germany then took the decision to attack the Soviet Union, declaring war on 8 May 1940. They were able to advance on all fronts as it appeared the Red Army had a pre-planned defensive line it was moving to. Within a day of the invasion, Soviet industry was already being moved into its hinterland while the US geared its industry towards war.

The Soviets seemed confident in their defence, choosing not to flood the Donetz river when the opportunity arrived on 20 May.
The German advance into the USSR and its’ neighbouring states continued, annexing Lithuania within 2 days of invading the little nation, on 24 June. However, their offensive soon lost pace as it was clear the Red Army already planned to have a defensive line behind the Dnieper and Western Dvina rivers. The Heer could not budge them as the Soviets held firm.




War in Europe and the Mediterranean

Meanwhile the war raged on elsewhere too as Malta was taken on 12 June 1940 by German and Italian forces; with 4 British Garrison divisions there surrendering to the Axis after the loss of 565 men to their 788. Three days later, Mussolini proclaimed the independent Maltese state. Three days after that, he then formed the Hellenic State as his dream of recreating the Roman Empire was coming to fruition. Bulgaria itself took the spoils from Greece, having annexed them the day before.

A small boost for the allies came on 24 May, when Rhodesia joined the UK’s Commonwealth Air Training Plan. A greater boost arrived for them on 2 June, with the US government passing the Lend-Lease Act in support of the UK’s war effort.

On 17 June 1940 the UK government petitioned the Irish to join them in the war against the Axis, offering the potential for complete Irish unity, to which the Irish Taoiseach Éamon de Valera replied firmly no as he stuck to the policy of neutrality and his suspicion of British promises.

This did not sway Churchill’s determination to continue the conflict, with him taking the decision to sink the French fleet at Mers-el-Kébir on 3 July with a heavy heart as the Strasbourg and Dunkerque were sent to the bottom of the Mediterranean. The British also pursued an attack on the Vichy French naval base at Dakar on 23 September, which was repelled but for the loss of Richelieu, Montcalm and Georges Leygues.

On 23 October the German leadership talked with both the Vichy and Spanish governments. While no success was had with Pétain, much was had with Franco, with him agreeing to join the Axis at an undisclosed date in the future, on strict conditions of substantial economic and territorial support to Spain.

As stalemate formed on the German-Soviet front nearing the end of 1940, Hitler’s attention went elsewhere as the Axis decided to attack Switzerland, quickly annexing then making it an Italian satellite regime on 16 October.


The state of the World as of 15 November 1940

Below outlines the world, which has forever changed compared to just last year. The USA had geared as much as it could towards a war industry, without being at war, while China consolidated and built upon its gains after uniting much of its nation.
What will 1941 bring to a world already in turmoil….




Military Losses Worldwide as of 15 November 1940







With much of the world already at war, this year found even more targets as even more nations were dragged into – some even voluntarily joined – the conflict.

Following the Hendaye Conference with Spanish leader Franco, his nation entered the war on 11 January 1941 under Operation Felix, joining the Axis. He was immediately rewarded with all of Morocco, which Vichy was forced to secede with great reluctance as much dissent formed in the country. His focus moved to taking the British base of Gibraltar, which was heavily defended.

This led to an intense battle for the tiny rock as over a million men fought for the key to the eastern Mediterranean. Field Marshall von Rundstedt commanded the German, Spanish & Italian forces while Field Marshall Wavell led the defense by British, French, Iraqi, Palestinian, South African and Canadians soldiers. The RAF and Luftwaffe entered into bitter fights for control of the air, as Air Marshall Ludlow-Hewitt and von Richthofen oversaw their squadrons. The Luftwaffe was even aided by an interceptor wing from the General Government of Poland. After the historic naval battles in the English Channel during the Battle of France, the Royal Navy was stretched thin, with a German fleet of 2 battlecruisers, 7 heavy cruisers and 9 light cruisers under Admiral Saalwächter being able to exploit this and supporting the Heer with a naval bombardment of Gibraltar.

The Gibraltar campaign lasted for months, starting in January and eventually finishing in Axis victory by mid-April 1941. Between 13 January and 11 April, in all theatres of war, the losses were (most are from Gibraltar): -


Following the Axis capture of Gibraltar, Salazar’s government in Portugal declared their support for the alliance and officially joined the Axis in their conflict with the Allies and Comintern. The Azores and Cape Verde Islands were quickly lost to British forces while Portugal’s African holdings were soon to become frontline provinces…


African & Middle Eastern Campaign

Also in January, the Axis declared war on Egypt, which was quickly invaded by German & Italian units as British, French, and Indian forces already stationed there tried to defend the nation. It was to no avail as the Axis won the battles for Fayum on 20 January 1941, losing 1,368 to the Allies’ 8,946, and then for Cairo on 23 January, taking down 3,799 while losing 827 of their own number.

The Battle for Port Said ended in the same fashion on 25 January, with the Axis taking 427 casualties to the Allies’ 4,858. However, Suez looked to be held as Allied ships blocked movement in the canal, but not after Axis troops had killed 1,058 Allied troops defending there, at the cost of 324 of their own troops on 28 January.

However, for a brief moment, the world came to an accord after the German leadership protested at the inaccuracy of their maps, claiming the separation from Port Said to Suez was just a river crossing, and stating the stupidity of the maps to ignore the far more important distinction that was separated them was a strait. The UK leadership acknowledged this deficiency in world geography and allowed Axis troops to cross un-heeded, thereby taking Suez and securing the canal.

The campaign then continued into Jordan, Palestine and Iraq as the Axis advanced. Indian troops bore the brunt of this losing defence for the Allies, losing 115,231 men between 13 January and 11 April. 34,243 Egyptians gave their lives defending their nation. Meanwhile the Italian losses of the same period numbered 11,854 men, 428 fighter planes and 56 bombers.

Having secured Egypt, the Axis continued their advance into the Middle East and further south into Africa. They attacked Syria and Lebanon in May 1941, quickly annexing both previously neutral nations. After them, Saudi Arabia and Yemen were next as Axis forces annexed them both, alongside Allied Oman, Trucial States and Kuwait. With all these nations and much of Iraq under their control, Mussolini declared the creation of the Arab Federation in the late summer of 1941. The Federation was officially completed on 22 December as it annexed Iraq after nearly a year of fighting there. This now threatened the Soviet puppet Iranian government as 1942 loomed.

Having secured Gibraltar and much of the Middle East, the Axis had formed another invasion force between May and August 1941, this time heading towards the rest of Allied-controlled Africa.

Impressed by their advance, the Madagascan government joined the Axis after August 1941.

By 28 October, Italy had annexed the only just recently re-established Ethiopia, Sudan and the East African Union.

On 10 November 1941 Italy annexed South Africa. On the same day it then proclaimed suzerainty over the newly formed nations of Namibia, and a restored South Africa.

On 15 November the French held Banana in the face of Axis assaults. Impfondo was held by Canadian forces successfully on 26 November. However, Italian forces won in Bangui and Kindu-Port-Empain on the 27th. French forces held their ground in Socotra, winning two battles there on 15 & 16 December.

1941 ended with France and Belgium still in the fight, although with far less African nations fighting on the Allied side.




War in Europe

Very little fighting took place in the continent until 28 November 1941, when the USSR attacked neutral Sweden. On 2 December the USSR pre-war investment in extracting its natural wealth was paying off as coal production increased in Vorkuta. With much of their nation occupied by the Red Army, the Swedish government surrendered on 13 December, becoming a puppet of the Soviet Union. Not before 21,418 Swedish troops had died fighting for their country.

But overall, throughout 1941, the Red Army had a relatively peaceful time. Between 15 November 1940 and 26 December 1941, they had inflicted 36,798 casualties on their enemies at a loss of 20,827 of their own troops.


War in the Pacific

The same can be said for the Chinese Army, as they lost just 9,068 troops while taking down 4,113 enemy soldiers. This was likely in skirmishes for Shanghai and the Japanese defensive line in Korea, as the Imperial Japanese Army had solidified its position there throughout 1940 and 1941 and had begun land fort production on the River Yalu Line as 1941 was coming to a close. China’s only gain this year was the undefended Macao province, after Portugal joined the Axis; alongside Sorong, an economically worthless Indonesian province. China’s main focus was on industrialising its’ economically not-so advanced nation throughout this time.

In contrast, intense naval battles between the Imperial Japanese Navy and the British Royal Navy ensued between April and May 1941 around Diego Garcia. The IJN fared extremely badly in the foray, losing 5 capital ships, 8 screens and 11 transport ships to the UK losses of 1 capital ship and 14 screens. Amongst the 5 Japanese capital ships sunk are the pride of the IJN, the super heavy battleships Yamato and Musashi. Both were quite young, with the Yamato having been commissioned on 8 August 1940, and the Musashi on 2 November 1940. While the two ships sunk all of the 15 ships the Royal Navy lost in those two months, they succumbed to the might of HMS Hood and Renown, both battlecruisers from the Great War. Showing that quantity can be a quality of its own as the Royal Navy outnumbered the IJN in all the battles.

Between 19 August and 28 October 1941 Japanese forces retook the island of Sumatra from British Commonwealth forces, with it being placed under Indonesian control. Fighting appeared light, with just 6,722 Japanese soldiers perishing at this time in all theatres of war, while 20,879 British troops died in battle in the same time period.

On 10 November 1941 the UK successfully defended Guadalcanal against a Japanese invasion. Fierce air and naval battles then persisted for the island as Australian and New Zealander pilots fought in the skies against the RAF, being able to win repeatedly. With the Axis forces gaining this air control, Japan was able to successfully take Guadalcanal on 22 November.




A Turning Point?

However, perhaps the most important event of 1941, occurred on 7 December 1941. This was the date the Axis declared war on the USA, bringing the only remaining neutral major power into the war. Already its war production staggered the world, and now it could be brought to bear on the Axis. How it would respond was yet to be seen.

That said, US subs seemed poised to attack the Axis merchant shipping, with many convoys sunk in the first few weeks of joining, alongside several US submarines too.

Furthermore, the US was not alone as Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Haiti, Panama and El Salvador declared war on the Axis just a day after the USA was forced into the war. Cuba & Guatemala did the same just a day later.

Between the US entry into the war and 26 December, the naval losses are as tallied: -




As 1941 was nearing an end, the Axis were severely low on oil which severely hampered their war effort as it appeared they had ordered all their motorised and armoured divisions to remain stationary unless absolutely necessary.

However, with virtually all of Europe, much of the Middle East, Africa and significant parts of Asia under Axis control they were in a very strong position. Securing the Mediterranean with the captures of Gibraltar and Suez freed up a lot of their forces to be used elsewhere.

Furthermore, 1941 had been a brutal year for the Allies whose forces were fighting all over the world. In all, 606,420 Allied troops died in combat between 11 January 1941 and 26 December 1941. Approximately 280,000 Axis men-at-arms shared the same fate – the exact number is unclear due to the amount of newly found Axis allies distorting the figure. 37,361 Comintern soldiers were also lost – disregarding Sweden’s losses – which were at the hands of the Comintern.









War in Europe spreads

Early in the year the USSR and their allies declared war on neutral Norway. With their forces moving in from Sweden and Finland the country was over-run. However, the campaign lasted for several months as Norway did not capitulate until the middle of 1942. 8,201 Norwegian troops died fighting for their country, bringing 4,086 Comintern troops with them to Valhalla.

Germany managed to create a puppet state of its own, without any bloodshed as the satellite state of Lithuania was formed in the summer of 1942. Later in the year – around September/October 1942 – it also created Byelorussia.


Germany’s Ost & USSR’s zapadnyy Walls

The German leadership had organised a project to fortify its’ eastern front as quickly as possible, in July 1940, when Germany first captured the Soviet provinces west of the rivers Dnieper and Western Dvina, and by 1942 the operation was nearing completion.

By June 1942 it was complete in German-held Ukraine; from late-August the entire Ost Wall was complete. With the USSR having had their own fortifications at maximum level in every plains province west of the Dnieper since 1940, the German-Soviet war appeared at a standstill.



Case Blau

That was until June 1942 when the Heer was ordered across the Western Dvina as it appeared the German leadership planned an advance on Moscow. By 19 June, the Latvian capital of Riga was taken, and by 28 August the Germany army was within a stones through of the Soviet capital as it held Velikiye Luki. It had also secured the rest of Latvia, and all of Estonia in these two months.

The fighting was intense in this period with over 600,000 German and Soviet troops dying in combat, alongside the loss of over 4,000 tanks and nearly 9,000 trucks. However, it had died down after that, with just 722 soldiers being killed at the hands of the Red Army between 28 August and 9 December 1942. The Soviet forces had held their ground and ensured Moscow remained the capital of the USSR, at least for 1942.


Africa Campaign

The US immediately made an impact on the war in Africa, reversing virtually all the Axis’ success in Africa, as the Allies reached the Egyptian border by April 1942. Part of this was the invasion of Madagascar, which cost the US 1,029 troops; with 2,310 Madagascans dying in defence of their nation.

Ethiopia, Somalia, and Madagascar were then made puppet states of the USA, meanwhile satellite states of South Africa, Namibia, Rhodesia, Angola, and Mozambique were set up by the British Empire.

The USA expanded the war on the continent by successfully invading and annexing the Spanish puppet state of Morocco between June and August 1942.

The Western Desert in southern Egypt was also taken by the Allies by 28 August, but not further advances were made into the Axis-held country under the Arab Federation.

A few months later President Roosevelt launched Operation Torch, with the USA declaring war on Vichy on 8 November 1942 to take its holdings in North Africa. This led to Germany initiating Case Anton, securing the Vichy regime, making it a puppet state of Germany in November, and being dragged into the Axis as US and Free French forces secured much of Vichy’s African colonies by 9 December 1942.

Amidst the chaos grappling Vichy, on 24 December 1942 Francois Darlan, Vichy’s Head of Government, was assassinated by a young monarchist. Pierre Laval took his place.





Middle East Campaign

With Iraq secured at the end of 1941, Iran became the next target for the Axis. Fierce fighting between the Axis – predominantly Italian – troops & the Soviet, Afghan and Iranian forces ensued for many months. The Battle of Abadan ended on 21 January 1942 in Axis victory, with 6,375 of their victorious troops being forever lost at the cost of 6,317 Comintern soldiers.

There were continuous battles over Tabriz, particularly in June, but after advancing between January and April, the predominantly Italian forces were halted, and the frontlines remained unchanged throughout the rest of 1942.


War in the Pacific

Afghan forces, as part of the Comintern, launched commando raids on Indonesia, taking Makassar and Palu early in the year before Japanese forces retook both by April 1942. Chinese forces also advanced on Western New Guinea before losing their conquests in the same period.

This peeked the attention of the Americans, who apparently detested any Communist presence in Asia, and secured the Indonesian island of Celebes by 28 August 1942. They went onto take the Timor island by November, and the archipelago of New Caledonia by December 1942.

In November 1942 Shanghai was captured bloodlessly by the Chinese as the Japanese Army had abandoned the city.

There were several intense naval battles in the region too – the Japanese won the battle in West Celebes Sea, their fleet under Vice Admiral Koga, between 3 and 4 August 1942 as they sunk 6 US transport ships, a submarine, two destroyers and the USS West Virginia battleship for no losses. Just a few weeks later, between 26-27 August, in the South Molucca Sea the US navy achieved a tactical victory at the cost of their carrier USS Randolph, taking the heavy cruisers IJN Mogami and Myoko with them to the bottom of the sea.

Between 28 August and 1 November 1942, the Imperial Japanese Navy enjoyed further success, sinking the modern aircraft carriers USS Bennington Hill and USS Bunker Hill, who were sunk by Japanese World War One battleships IJN Kongo and Yamashiro. The carrier USS Hornet was also destroyed at this time, by Japanese land-based bombers.

However, the US navy had a very different success of its own in 1942, as it targeted Axis – particularly – Japanese – merchant shipping. For the loss of just 17 submarines between 8 January and 9 December, their submariners had sunk 783 merchant ships and 118 escort ships. US success in the past year trumped Britain’s numbers over the past three.

Their forces also achieved another, smaller success, in taking much of Micronesia during the year. 472 Micronesians died fighting the American invasion, destroying two US fighter planes as well.

The Japanese had also taken back Toyohara, and advanced into Ocha to secure all of Sakhalin. They also landed in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskij in order to control the naval base there.





Arms race of a completely different kind

Throughout all this time of bitter conflict, the German and US governments were researching far more devastating weapons then the world had ever known. Atomic research had begun in late-1939 by the US government, who were far behind the Germans in their knowledge of the topic. Soon after, the Germans ordered further studies, beginning in early 1940.

While the Germans had a lead start, the Americans had research boosts in the area, having Robert Oppenheimer & his team, who were more skilled than Germany’s counterpart of Werner Heisenberg & his team. Furthermore, they employed Henry Morgenthau as their Armaments minister, helping improve what was classified somewhat euphemistically as “Industrial Research”. Additionally, their Individualist Enterprise Culture and Enterprise Focus Social Policy significantly boosted the USA’s research efforts.

Germany eventually did switch their Armaments Minister to someone with similar skill to Morgenthau, but not until late until 1942, appointing Johann Schwerin von Krosigk. They had previously appointed Albert Speer - on 26 February 1942 – as he immediately enacted reforms, improving the nation’s industrial efficiency by 5%.

This, and the subsequent events in the succeeding years replicating the “economic miracle” of Germany’s war production under Speer have been removed in future updates of the Improved 1936 mod, as there is much debate disputing this claim.

Where this would all lead to is anyone’s guess.


The World at the end of 1942

While the Allies had taken back most of Africa and parts of the Pacific, the Axis were still in a strong position, especially after securing the oilfields in Abadan and Kirkuk. Festung Europa had only been strengthened this year: with the completion of the Ost Wall, the continued efforts – aided by the Brittany and Flanders puppet states - towards fortifying the Atlantikwall, Spain continuing to gear itself towards the Axis war effort, and Vichy, Byelorussia and Lithuania all joining the Axis.

Japan’s Imperial Navy had scored great success this year, with the US licking their wounds with just a few new provinces of questionable economic and strategic value. However, their Merchant Navy – or what is left of it – could not say the same.







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Not much fighting took place on the continent throughout 1943. One of the few things worth a mention were that partisan uprisings took place in Kielce and Przemysl and were soon put down by Axis forces on 22 August, and 10 November, respectively. The freedom fighters in Przemysl had lasted for 4 days before being destroyed by their occupiers.

Middle East Campaign

The Soviets battled for the region, and were faced with predominantly Italian, Spanish, and Arab forces flying the Axis flag. They started with an attack on Babolsar on 10 May with 21 Comintern divisions calling off the attack just a day later when faced with 6 Axis divisions. Esfahan was targeted a day after that as 29 Comintern divisions descended on the mountainous province, which was successfully defended by 18 Axis units.

There was no further combat until 17 October, as Comintern forces under Soviet command assaulted Bakhtaran with 66 divisions. After just over a month of fighting, the 45 Axis divisions remained in the province. Esfahan was also unsuccessfully attacked by 16 Comintern units trying to expose the flanks of the Axis on 29 October, but with 12 Axis divisions there no change in control was achieved.

The third Battle of Esfahan was made on 14 November but was called off on the same day even though 30 Comintern divisions faced just 6 Axis. The only successful attack in the area this year was made by Axis forces, as 6 of their divisions beat the sole Sinkiang unit defending Yazd on 29 November.



Sanaa Campaign

The Allies targeted the Yemeni capital of Sanaa with complete dedication throughout 1943.

They began with a naval battle in the East Coast of Somalia, which saw over 30 war ships fight between 1-2 June as the Italian and American navies fought, however minimal casualties were taken, with one Italian light cruiser being the sole loss.

The Allies followed this up with a tense battle in the West Gulf of Aden as American carriers and British battleships faced off against Italian heavy cruisers at close range on 5-6 June 1943. RN Zara, San Marco and an Italian light cruiser were sunk at the cost of just one UK light cruiser.

Their first attempt to take Sanaa began on 22 June 1943, with 21 Allied divisions under Indian leadership launched an amphibious assault. The Axis forces totaling 15 divisions beat back this bloody attempt only by 7 July. Feint attacks were made on Aden and Abha at the same time, the battles only lasting a day or two, ending on 24 June in Axis victory. The second battle for Sanaa began immediately after the first, lasting between 7 and 20 July, once again with the defenders holding their ground.

The third Battle of Sanaa commenced 14 August by forces under British command, ending in (predominantly) Italian victory ten days later. This was coupled with the minor attack on neighbouring Abha, between 13 and 16 August, as 13 Allied divisions were held off by 6 Axis divisions. The fourth immediately thereafter, as troops under Indian leadership battled for the province for 19 days with no success. An American commander then led the fifth attack, lasting 6 days before calling us his 15 divisions when faced with 30 Axis divisions. 20 September the sixth Allied attack begins under Indian command, with their 18 divisions losing to 45 Axis divisions by 3 October 1943.

Seven more attempts are made for the Yemeni capital, between October 3 and 21 December 1943, all of which are repulsed by the Axis units in the area. This also included another attempt on Abha, with 26 Axis divisions defeating the 7 Allied divisions which attacked between 18 and 24 October. While the Allies could not claim any success in claiming land, they had been able to bleed Italy and many Axis countries dry.

Further loss of life was achieved by the Regia Marina intercepting and sending 6 UK transport ships and a light cruiser to the bottom of the North Red Sea on 4 November 1943.


North Africa

Germany and its puppets launched a small offensive into lightly defended Allied-Libya, winning the Battles for Forte Maddalena on 1 January and Msus on the 7th. Italian forces won the Battle of Bengazi on 13 April as just 1 division of theirs faced a lone Brazilian division.

On 6 January 1943 nine German-French submarines are sunk in the Gulf of Morocco by a US ASW fleet patrolling the area.

After a relative stalemate since June 1942, the Allies launched major offensives in southern Egypt on 13 August 1943. 50 Allied divisions assaulted the 40 Axis defenders at Aswan but were held off by 2 September. Qusayr was attacked simultaneously on 17 August but was held after a week of fighting.

The Axis defence finally broke - 11 October saw 39 Allied divisions descending on 27 Axis divisions on Aswan, winning the battle by the 16th. US-led forces won the Battle of Idfu on the 14th, and British commanders chanted for victory in Asyut on the 17th.

70 Allied divisions faced off 49 Axis divisions in the Battle of Fayum between 12 October and 5 November, which ended in Axis victory. Even the feint attack on neighbouring Luxor was not enough as 13 Allied divisions attacked 45 Axis units there between 16 and 18 October. However, the Allies’ numerical superiority was paying off as, on 18 October, 56 Allied divisions launched a second attack on Luxor with 36 Axis divisions being beaten off by the 25th.

After the Allied success at Luxor and Aswan – but failure at Fayum – they recuperated their forces before launching a second attack on Fayum with 75 divisions on 30 December 1943. 54 Axis divisions were rallied in defence. As this battle lasted into 1944 its’ result will be told in a future update…

Partisans were also active in the theatre, with the people of Sfax rising up in resistance to Axis occupation in November, they went onto take Tunis and Kassarine before being routed by Axis forces between 27 November and 3 December 1943.

These forces went onto attack Brazilian units in Sétif, Algiers, Blida and Philippeville. While winning in Sétif and Philippeville on 6 and 20 December, respectively, the Brazilians held them at Algiers and Blida on 10 and 11 December.

On 12 December, the Italian heavy cruiser RN Carlo Alberto - having only been constructed earlier this year – was sunk by the battleship MN Jean-Bart on the Coast of Algiers as it fought a numerically close engagement with the Allied French fleet.






The Pacific

The Italians had sent Japan an ASW fleet in response to the US sinking so much of their merchant fleet. This had an immediate impact, with 3 US subs being sunk between January and March 1943 by the Italian force. The IJN were able to sink 6 US submarines during the year. These 9 subs were the total US losses in that naval arm for the year, which – with the assistance of other Allied fleets – were able to sink 250 Japanese merchant fleets, 144 German & Italian merchant fleets, and 142 (primarily German) escort vessels between 17 January 1943 and 6 January 1944. The Japanese were the most hit by this, as they constantly struggled to supply their war industry due to their dependence on resources from overseas.

US forces managed to invade, take, and then liberate New Zealand as their satellite state between 9 December 1942 and 14 January 1943.

Commonwealth forces launched an attack on the Indonesian naval base of Rabaul in New Britain on 2 February 1943. The 2 Japanese divisions faced 6 Commonwealth and after 4 days of fighting were defeated. Gasmata quickly fell after that, with either the Japanese divisions escaping via sea transport, or being over-run being reaching the western side of the island.

The Japanese tried responding with an amphibious assault on East Timor on 8 February, which was held by 10 Allied divisions. Using just 6 of their own, the Japanese were repulsed after 4 days of fighting.

Major engagements between the Imperial Japanese and US navies took place throughout the year.

Between 12 and 14 February 1943 no love was lost as they battled in the Van Diemen Gulf. The IJN lost their carrier Ryujo alongside two light carriers; however, they still came off better than the Americans, who had to say goodbye to five of their carriers as USS Essex, Hancock, Enterprise, Wasp, and another also called Essex were sent to the bottom of the Pacific, alongside a destroyer and light cruiser. Grand Admiral Nagumo led the IJN in this epic clash, with Yamamoto also participating.

Just a day later the IJN scored further tremendous success, as US battleships now came within scope of Admiral Mikawa’s Fleet. The USS Arizona, New York and Nevada – plus a destroyer and light cruiser – were lost at the cost of just two IJN light cruisers in the Battle of Sape Strait on 15-16 February 1943.

With the loss of five carriers and 3 battleships, the US fleets still braved offensives as south Australia came under threat. This resulted in the loss of 6 American landing craft flotillas that were intercepted in Lord Howe Rise on 22 and 23 March 1943. Undoubtedly, American troops were onboard as the US lost 44,826 men between 17 February and 20 April 1943. They had only inflicted 2,176 losses on their foes at the same time.

The focus then moved over the island of New Guinea after US forces landed relatively unopposed between April and June 1943. 16 Allied divisions under Brazilian command attacked 2 Japanese divisions at Port Moresby on 15 May, routing them by the 20th. Those forces then landed in the undefended provinces around the Port. Fierce battles ensued for the island, with Japan landing 13 divisions into Merauke and then attacking Kerema on 17 May with the aim to rescue their divisions which were becoming encircled in Port Moresby. The 6 US divisions defending were routed on the 22nd, but they were able to reinforce the province again on 30 June as it came under attack once again. The 7 American divisions were beaten by 3 July, but the third battle of Kerema on 3 August ended in US victory as 16 US divisions repulsed the Japanese, who quickly called off the attack.

A crucial turning point in this campaign came when Roosevelt’s sailors spotted and sunk 5 undefended Japanese transports in the Gulf of Papua on 21 May 1943. Another 3 were sunk by the Royal Navy just 2 days later as their carriers HMS Empire Resurgence and Illustrious launched a port strike on Merauke. As the rest of the Japanese fleet there tried escaping, the Allied carrier fleet opened fire on the Coast of Merauke on 24 May, sinking the Japanese carriers IJN Zuikaku and Akagi, battlecruisers Haruna, Kongo and Kirishima, heavy cruiser Atago, two transport ships and four light cruisers at no loss to their fleet.

At the same time, the British sunk heavy cruiser IJN Maya and 5 light cruisers with 13 IJN ships escaping the carrier fleet in the Gulf of Carpentaria.

The 13 Japanese divisions were now stranded after these naval engagements ended any chance of extraction by the IJN and were gradually encircled by the US Army. Merauke was first attacked on 4 June and was held by the Japanese after 2 days of fighting. The second battle, between 9 and 10 August, also ended in Japanese victory. As did the third, between 14 and 17 August. Same result for the fourth, which lasted between 24 August and 2 September. For the fifth the US mustered together 25 divisions against Japan’s 13, but once again were held back after nearly 2 weeks of fighting as the battle ended on 28 September 1943.

However, the days numbered for the unlucky 13, with the US spending two months getting enough units in position to completely surround the Japanese, as 40 American divisions attacked Merauke for a sixth time on 8 December. This was accompanied by intense US bombing from the air. After holding for 5 days, the Japanese forces – who had lasted for 8 months on New Guinea – were finally defeated.

The Allies were able to then launch a small offensive into north-eastern Australia, landing in undefended Cairns. The Japanese immediately counter attacked with 3 divisions in the area, but after a week of fighting they were repulsed by 29 December by 6 Allied divisions. The Allies proceeded to defeat the 1 Japanese division defending Townsville with 5 of their own on the same day.









After a heavy lull on the China-Korean border between Comintern – predominantly Chinese – and Axis – mainly Japanese – forces, the Comintern tried crossing the river Yalu in their hundreds of thousands. Chongyin was targeted first as 73 Comintern divisions faced off 47 Japanese, with fighting between 15 and 20 April 1943. Soviet paratroopers joined the battle to give the attackers 3 separate fronts.

Hyesan was next, with 49 Comintern divisions against 35 Japanese fighting between 13 and 17 May. Sinuiju was targeted simultaneously with 24 Comintern divisions descending on 12 Japanese, battling between 15 and 18 May. The seven IJA armies of Korea’s Buddies, Korea’s Life Force, Korea’s Muggins, Korea’s Residents, Korea’s Night Watch, Dai 21 Gun and Dai 1 Hōmengun ensured all three provinces remained in Japanese hands with no further battles on this front for the rest of the year. The Chinese had sent a total of 43,034 Japanese soldiers to the grave, at a loss of 94,559 of their own.

In between all this, the Thai navy, now sailing under the Comintern flag, ventured into Chinese waters only to be spotted by a small Japanese carrier fleet under Admiral Fukudome in the Hainan Strait on 10 May 1943. The heavy cruisers HTMS Sri Ayuthia and Dhonburi and a Thai destroyer were sent to the bottom of the sea at no loss to the Japanese.


A bloody year

All in all, 1943 was most prominent for the naval battles between the Japanese and Allied fleets, however the Egyptian and Middle Eastern offensives had taken their toll on the Axis and the nuclear research race continued, with the US scientists hot on the heels of Germany’s. By the start of 1944 they were set to over-take them. However, it is worth noting the subsequent technology for nuclear weapons is considered a “Secret Weapon” tech, meaning the USA’s bonuses for “Industrial Research” would soon come to an end in this respect. Furthermore, the German Head of State is particularly fond of “Wonder Weapons”, with his focus on them giving German scientists studying them a 5% boost in their endeavours.

German, Spanish, Flemish, Danish, Portuguese and Breton efforts in securing their hold on Europe were nearing completion as project Festung Europa was virtually done by January 1944.







  • 1Like
Amazing read. Im soo hooked on this MP. :D
Thank you Alizon, much appreciated!

The 1944 update is taking a while to compile, so much more has happened! It was a very busy year - and as I'm now nearing the actual game progress (we're at September 1945), I'm having to censor a few things. But plenty will still be revealed soon (and even more once we finish the campaign :D )
Be sure that Alizon is not the only amazed reader of this AAR, I have actually saved this thread as a bookmark in my browser and I regularly check if its updated!
Fantastic work on the AAR, I really like the style of it (the statistics, "the narrating", the dialogue among the players - well everything!).

The MP game in itself looks really good with strong and creative players. I think the fact that you play the MP game with Lord Jarski's improved 1936-mod makes it even better. I have played the "improved 1936" for quite some hours during COVID-19 myself, and it is excellent.

Due to OPSEC concerns I guess the players cannot comment on the strategic picture, but as of the end of 1943 update, my personal impression is that the Comintern looks to be in a strong position. The Soviet Union appears to have weathered the storm in terms of resisting the German push for Moscow. And with China on its side, the pure numbers in term of manpower must be strong. Some decent puppets (Iran, Sweden etc.) that can push out some divisions too.

That be said, I might be judging the situation totally wrong and perhaps I find that Moscow has fallen or even that the Bitter Peace have been triggered when the next updates come in. In any case, looking forwards to reading them! Greetings and applause from Norway.
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Be sure that Alizon is not the only amazed reader of this AAR, I have actually saved this thread in my as a bookmark in my browser and I regularly check if its updated!
Fantastic work on the AAR, I really like the style of it (the statistics, "the narrating", the dialogue among the players - well everything!).
Thank you for the very kind words, I very much appreciate them.
The MP game in itself looks really good with strong and creative players. I think the fact that you play the MP game with Lord Jarski's improved 1936-mod makes it even better. I have played the "improved 1936" for quite some hours during COVID-19 myself, and it is excellent.
It really is, we've played so many online campaigns with it now, and his mod is great in so many ways.
Due to OPSEC concerns I guess the players cannot comment on the strategic picture, but as of the end of 1943 update, my personal impression is that the Comintern looks to be in a strong position. The Soviet Union appears to have weathered the storm in terms of resisting the German push for Moscow. And with China on its side, the pure numbers in term of manpower must be strong. Some decent puppets (Iran, Sweden etc.) that can push out some divisions too.

That be said, I might be judging the situation totally wrong and perhaps I find that Moscow has fallen or even that the Bitter Peace have been triggered when the next updates come in. In any case, looking forwards to reading them! Greetings and applause from Norway.
Thanks again. All will be revealed in due course. 1944 is set to be a very important year!

Salutations and thanks from Britain :D
1 January to 20 August 1944

Italy’s Poor State of Affairs

Having lost 404,433 men at arms, 1,026 fighter planes, 418 bombers, 1,887 trucks and 944 tanks between 14 January 1943 and 6 January 1944, the Kingdom of Italy was facing dire straits as it entered the year.

However, with just 10,100 men in reserve and 101,530 troops needed to reinforce existing units, desperate measures needed to be taken.

Furthermore, many of these depleted units were ordered to fight to the death in order to hold the line. While this succeeded militarily, it caused great dissent amongst the survivors and public opinion at home. Dissent levels topped 40% of the possible limits. German garrisons, alongside Hungarian, Hellenic, Bosnian, Serbian and Slovenian units were spread across Italy’s heartlands to help keep popular resistance to the regime to a minimum. Even so, an estimated 22% of Italy’s war industry was lost due to all the internal dissent.

However, the great nation still had 1,398,000 men under-arms, including 77,000 in the Regia Marina and 76,000 in the Regia Aeronautica. It was certainly a force to be reckoned with, having killed a total of 1,071,353 enemy troops at a loss of 770,353 of its own by 6 January 1944. While bruised, Italy was far from beaten.

These men quickly achieved their first victory of 1944, on 6 January, as 54 – primarily Italian – divisions held off the 75 Allied divisions attacking the Egyptian province of Fayum. This successfully deterred the Allies from making any further attempts in the area for the coming months.


As 1943 started with the liberation of New Zealand, 1944 starts with the liberation of Australia as the Allied armies that had landed before the year ended began their advance across the vast island. Japan lost 90,678 men between 6 January and 23 February 1944 as its army defending Australia was complete destroyed by the advancing Allied – predominantly American – forces. The IJN was unable to assist, having just 6 landing craft flotillas, all too far away to help. Even if they were closer, the risk of getting sunk was too great in the face of British and American carriers patrolling the area.

Mexican soldiers killed over 9,000 Japanese & Australian troops in this campaign, for the loss of around 300 men. Furthermore, New Zealander & Burmese forces defeated around 2,000 Axis soldiers for the loss of a few hundred of their own.

Two naval battles occurred between the Soviet Navy and the IJN between 25 and 28 January in Vladivostok Bay, with a Japanese sub being sunk in the first battle and the “Sino-Soviet Treaty” went to the bottom of the Pacific in the second, a Soviet destroyer that had been named in solidarity with their Chinese allies.

Even after the heavy losses incurred by the Imperial Japanese Navy on the US fleets, their economic superiority was showing as an estimated 16 US carriers were patrolling the world’s oceans. This meant the IJN had to be extremely cautious throughout the year. It still was not enough as two Japanese transport flotillas were spotted and sunk by 13 US ships on 19 March in the West Celebes Sea.

Having secured Tasmania and all of mainland Australia, the USA created it as a puppet state of its own on 4 March 1944.

After that, its forces targeted Indonesia. The island of Java was attacked on 25 March, Semarang being targeted first. Just a day later the remaining six province Java were attacked simultaneously as upto 120 (likely much less) Allied divisions descended on 41 Indonesian militia divisions. This overwhelming force smashed their opposition. Batavia was their first victory, on 1 April, Madura a day later, Semerang and Soerabaja on the 5th, Djokjakarta the 8th, and Tjilatjap holding out until the 9th.

After securing Java, Borneo was next. 15 Allied divisions, under US leadership, assaulted Banderjmasin on 9 May. Defended by only 2 Axis units, the battle was won in 3 days. The island was taken after many battles as Indonesian, Guangxi and Japanese units were routed. It was in US and Indian hands by 20 June. Indonesia was annexed and re-created as an American puppet state on 18 June.

After this, China launched its’ only during this period with Japanese forces on 3 July. Using just 1 division to presumably scout the defences at Chongyin, which had 33 divisions defending it, the battle was over on the same day.

The Allied war on merchant shipping had a few battles of its own, with 6 Allied submarines being sunk in the Ryukyu Trench between 28 July and 22 August. However, the US navy set a trap in the Ryukyu Trench as, a day after losing 2 subs, a fleet of 22 Allied ships engaged the Japanese anti-submarine fleet, sinking it in its entirety as the IJN’s light carriers Shoho, Notoro and 3 destroyers went to the bottom of the Pacific.






Middle East

The aforementioned battle for Sanaa that had commenced on 21 December 1943 had, once again, ended in victory for the Axis defenders, by 6 January 1944. The Red Army had tried to increase the pressure in the area, attacking Kirkuk with 24 divisions on New Year’s Day, but called off the attack just a day later as they were faced with 22 Axis units defending. Bakhtaran was then targeted by 51 Soviet-led divisions on 3 January but were held off by 64 Axis divisions after 3 days of fighting.

Buoyant after their successful defence of the region, the Axis launched an offensive of their own. They assaulted Bandar Abbas with 31 divisions on 25 January. They won within 2 days of fighting, having only been opposed by 12 Afghan militia units. After the province was captured, Comintern forces attempted three counterattacks, all unsuccessful, between 8 and 19 February. However, the fourth ended in Soviet victory as their 9 divisions routed 5 Axis on 25 February.

Nevertheless, the Axis offensive continued, with victories in Dasht-i-Kavir on 15 February when attacking and 5 March when defending. Birjand was successfully assaulted on 27 February, and then again on 16 March as 13 Comintern divisions retreated. Mashhad fell on 14 March, opening up part of the USSR itself as Axis forces reached the River Amu Darya by the 19th. After taking Chardzhou, it was immediately counter attacked by 25 Comintern divisions, these were likely defensive units trying to reinforce as they called off their attack within a day of fighting, when only faced with 3 German divisions defending.

Teheran was captured after a significant battle - with nearly 500,000 men fighting on both sides - which ended on 24 March.

Afghanistan itself had become a target as the Axis won the battle for Herat with 18 divisions against the Comintern’s 24, on 30 March. German forces had reached Bukhara, Kungrad and Kulsary by mid-April before retreating behind the river.

With Teheran in Arabian hands, Hamadan was next as the Iranian province was now flanked by 3 Axis-held territories – offering significant combat boosts for the attackers, especially if they used paratroopers in support. 44 Axis divisions defeated the 32 Comintern units there within 3 days of fighting, winning on 6 April. On the same day, the Afghani forces were routed from Kandahar.

Ashgabat was counter-attacked by Soviet forces, but the German tank divisions held and soon after crossed the river, battling Chinese divisions defending Samarkand and taking the province alongside holding Bukhara by 6 May. However, the Soviets then gained some ground – apparently with no battles taking place – by 15 June.



North Africa

Alongside the Middle East, North Africa also became the target for a major Axis offensive. Launched on 25 May, Philippeville was their first target, being won within a day of combat as 22 – primarily if not solely German – divisions pushed their way through 2 Allied divisions under Brazilian command. Sétif, Bougie, Algiers and Blida were all won by 1 June. A major battle took place for Mostaganem as 28 Axis faced off 17 Allied divisions successfully, routing them after 5 days of fighting on 6 June.

On 4 June, the Axis launched another major attack on Oran as 44 of its divisions battled with 20 Allied – under Brazilian command – winning by the 15th. Tlemcen was attacked during this battle, starting on the 8th, as 18 Axis units pushed back the 9 Allied divisions defending the province on 15 June.

However, this offensive lost its steam, with British commanders leading the counterattack, 18 Allied divisions attacked Oran on 17 June, winning just a day later as a German general ordered a retreat for the 18 divisions under their command. Tlemcen, having only been held for no more than 4 days, was also abandoned as 15 Axis divisions retreated in the face of just 3 Allied units on 19 June.

The only naval battle for the Regia Marina during this part of the year took place between 15-16 June in the Gulf of Almeira. It was a major one, with 29 Axis ships facing off 13 Allied – French led – war ships. It ended in a decisive Italian victory, with the Marine Nationale having to say goodbye to two of its’ battleships, the Ocean and Jean-Bart, 3 destroyers and a light cruiser. Just one Italian light cruiser was lost in response.

The last battles in the Tunisia-Algerian-Moroccan theatre for this part of the year took place on 20 & 22 June, as 3 Canadian-led Allied divisions pushed back 3 Axis units in Mostaganem and then Algiers. This showed that both sides had moved the majority of their forces out of this theatre…

Perhaps the Allied had moved some of their forces to Egypt as British commanders ordered an attack on As Suways on 19 July. Using only 10 divisions, the Allied were faced with 56 Axis divisions defending at the peak of the battle. However, it was extremely protracted, with the Axis defenders only winning over a month later, on 20 August.




On March 14, the USSR launched a preliminary offensive with over 120 divisions as they tested the defences of Velikiye Luki and Dnepropetrovsk and called off both attacks after just a few days fighting as the 63 German and Romanian divisions held them off.

The defenders of Velikiye Luki were tested once again on 6 May, but this time had 48 German divisions holding the province, which successfully beat of the 69 Red Army units within 3 days of fighting.

On an unrelated note, German forces managed to take Gotland from Sweden, battling the 1 division there for a day before winning the battle on 14 May.

These operations, while tactical defeats, provided vital information to the Soviets on the forces that opposed them. With this information they planned in the coming months and launched a third operation on 6 June – Operation Bagration.

The aim was to take back all the lands the Germans had captured in 1943 to secure Moscow. Pskov - which had 4 airfields - was the first target as 52 Soviet divisions advanced across the plains. Velikiye Luki was next as – at its peak – 72 Red Army units descended on the forest on 8 June. Novorzhev was next, attacked on 14 June by 54 Soviet divisions. Nevel a day later, then Gulbene, Voru & Opochka as Stalin’s armies seemed unstoppable. All these battles ended in victory for the Reds by 20 June.

Hundreds of Red Army divisions were beating back dozens of German units as they could not win a war of attrition. Dagaupulis was won by the Soviets within 3 days of fighting by 21 June, same for Polotsk. Germany’s retreat appeared disorganised, with just 3 of their divisions holding off 20 in the Battle for Vitebsk on 20 June, but not for long. The Communists were able to take Riga – it being on the wrong side of the river – on 23 June.

However, this was all a strategic withdrawal by the Germans, as their forces were solidified behind their Ost Wall as they crossed the Western Dvina river. Swieciany was held by 54 German divisions after 2 days of fighting as the 50 Soviet divisions called off the attack on 23 June. Jekapils also held, with 22 German units staving off 21 of Stalin’s on the same day.

Further attempts were made on the Ost Wall, as nearly 60 Soviet divisions battled just 15 Axis on 23 June, and then again on 17 August, however they then faced 58 Axis units the second time around. Orsha was also contested, with 73 Red Army divisions attacking 64 German divisions, on 16 & 26 July, and a third time on 17 August. Swieciany’s defences were tested once again on the same day. However, all these battles ended in Axis victory, and by 20 August the Ost Wall stood firm.






Nuclear Research Race

Throughout all this period the German and American scientists progressed with utmost pace towards developing weapons far more destructive than the world has yet seen…


The rest of 1944 to follow.