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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning
Chapter 21 – November 1945

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Chapter 21 – November 1945

AuthAAR’s Notes: So, as mentioned before my new HOI3 mod project is quite time-consuming, as I’m learning to mod the game from scratch and doing a major country and scenario rewrite, with dozens of new or modified countries, map changes, new/adapted events etc.

With this and my three other AARs still going, it means this one is going to get even quicker and dirtier (I’m gradually honing it down to my original ideal of short and sharp ;) ). Quicker to write and read, I hope, making use of some spreadsheet stuff that is now pre-formatted and automatically collated to cut down on words and screenshots. Plus just omitting more details from combat descriptions, minor diplomatic events etc and making the summaries even more general. Especially as this war with Japan is taking longer than I’d anticipated to finish off.

I hope all this meets with your approval, Dear Readers. I think the sweep and gist of things still comes across OK, but please let me know if you think it doesn’t.


******

1. The Far East Front

[Note: The first format change is to provide an up-front summary of the whole Front, then just add few commentary details and stats for each sector.]

November saw supply problems across the front have a noticeable effect on Soviet combat operations. The Central Sector was particularly hard hit by shortages, with the air base of Irkutsk basically out of commission for the month, and those to the east of it on limited operations only. Poor supply also badly affected a number of ground battles. The two combined meant the Japanese were able to be far more aggressive in the Central Sector in particular, though the Soviets still made some gains.


Operational Summary, Far East – November 1945.

******

1.1 Eastern Sector

For example, lack of supplies in Urusha, where one Soviet rifle division was defending an attack by four enemy division saw it in big trouble on the morning of 5 November. A day later, supply had been restored but the damage had been done. The battle was lost later on 6 November, with disproportionately high Soviet casualties (1137 v 385).

On the morning of 7 November, the 1st Marine Division arrived by train in Ulya, where it linked up with the Red Banner Pacific Fleet and began to work up to full combat organisation.

On 8 November, the new 2 DBAD (STRAT – Pe-8s) bomber wing was deployed to Tyndinskiy to begin working up. 1 DBAD (equipped with older versions of the Pe-8) was also transferred there from the west. The VVS was interested in conducting some test runs with their new toys. The range of 1 DBAD was less than the new 2 DBAD due to older fuel tanks (both wings were being upgraded to even newer components which had been developed while they were being built) and they had an older airframe model.


1 DBAD was sent to do logistical bombing in the Obluchye region – the wing commander would select his own target province. With few Japanese aircraft active in the Theatre, the wing (at around 50% org after recent rebasing) was sent by itself. Which proved to be an unwise risk.


Their bombing run on Bureya started at 1500hr on 9 November, but they were met by a wing of Japanese INT. Soviet fighters of 7th Air Wing (which it turned out had been just in range after all) were scrambled to assist and briefly engaged the Japanese as the raid was ending. But 1 DBAD had been badly cut up by the time they returned later that evening; their mission was hastily called off.

Later that night, the Soviets (left on an air superiority mission in the area) had their revenge, intercepting 4 Zerosen at 2200hr over Bureya, taking a little damage but devastating the Japanese interceptors, with an air victory declared.

As Soviet progress was made towards Nikolayevsk na Amure, a new southern objective of the air base of Tumnin was added to 6th Army’s list.


By 29 November, 4 Zerosen had been repaired enough for the Japanese to send them out again – and they were once more jumped by 7th Air Wing this time over Zavitaya, for another devastating VVS air victory.

As the month ended, the sector had seen some heavy fighting, including probably the largest single battle yet in the Far East, a Soviet victory attacking Obluchye, with combined casualties of over 5,000 men in the six-day battle. The next three largest battles were all won by the Japanese, in that part of the line nearer to the Central Sector (and thus with more supply problems).


Battles listed in size by total casualties, with unfinished at the bottom, shaded grey.
But the terrain won by month’s end was all in the Soviet column, with Skovordino lost on the 2nd but won back again by the 28th.

******

1.2 Central Sector

On 1 November, 52nd Corps was transferred from 7th to 1st Army after the latter’s recent more aggressive spirit and progress in the Central Sector, bring the 1st up to 100,000 men in strength, in three corps.

By 3 November, supply problems were widespread. Virtually no air support was available in the sector and attacks that should have been reasonably viable were often aborted after a short skirmish, while defence often became very difficult.

This persisted during the month: the defence of Shilka (three otherwise strong Soviet divisions defending an attack by one Japanese infantry division) was badly compromised on 17 November by a lack of supplies. That shorter battle was won, but an eight-day battle from 20-28 November was eventually lost, despite a casualty count well in the Soviets’ favour (658 v 1,319), from a lack of organisation following a continuation of poor supply.

The Japanese were firmly on the offensive in this sector throughout the month, winning all the larger battles and gaining some ground in Ust’Karsk early and then Mogocha later in the month. This was offset by a range of smaller Soviet victories and gains further west, especially the objective province of Mildigun, captured on 5 November and held for the rest of the month.



******

1.3 Southern Sector

The Southern Sector only saw limited combat by Soviet forces, though the Mongolians (for whom there are no battle reports) were quite active, advancing in the south (which I think triggered one of those auto occupation of low infra provinces gains) and holding elsewhere. Not a single air mission was flown in the sector during the month, highlighting the supply problems for the VVS in Irkutsk.



******

2. Finland

The suppression of the Finnish revolt was in full swing during November. The Soviet Archangelsk Theatre had mounted its main response from the north and east. A few Finnish units were running around in the less well-guarded margins to the west and south, but there was no doubt they would be rounded up in due course.


Casualties rates were running at 20-1 in the Soviets’ favour. Some air units (CAS) had been transferred to the Theatre Commander, but he seemed not to have used them yet. A steady sequence of provinces was liberated throughout November.


Question: could this theatre be diverting supply effort from the Far East, hence causing some of the problems over there in recent weeks? If so – damn pesky rebels, but well done game. ;)

******

3. Production and Logistics

The new and powerful 11. Tank Division finished basic training and was deployed in the Lwow Theatre on 1 November. Its place in the queue was taken up by a lighter and smaller but faster armoured formation.


At this stage, US Lend Lease was again at a high (around 100 IC), giving a total Soviet capacity of 432 IC, of which 237 IC was being spent on the production queue, which was running at 100%.

A new nuclear reactor (the third such facility) was completed in Noginsk on 5 November. No new reactors were planned, but the released effort went into expanding the Mytishchi facility to a third level. All were near Moscow, where Stalin could keep a close eye on them.


Some spare IC was invested in beginning a high-cost heavy mechanised division, though subsequent cutbacks to US Lend Lease would slow its production significantly in coming weeks. Still, it was an investment for a possible future war for Europe.


Indeed, by 12 November Lend Lease had reduced to 67 IC, with the total Soviet economy down to 390 IC. Production of the new heavy mechanised division was slowed to around 12% of its massive 40.5 IC cost.

As described in the Far East reports, supply across the front was poor by 12 November, especially around Irkutsk, except in the eastern part of the front, the advance in the middle of the Central Sector and in southern Mongolia. It was probably no coincidence that this was where the Soviets were having the most success on the battlefield.


Another new INT wing was deployed in the west on 15 November. And by the 18th, the supply shortages in the Central Sector had worsened and were causing real problems the Japanese were taking advantage of.


This prompted another series of infrastructure upgrades in the Far East and a couple of ‘weak links’ in the Trans-Siberian Railway back west near Magnitogorsk. All were put to the top of the queue (11 in all, at 0.29 IC each).


A check on the VVS units in Irkutsk on 24 November confirmed they were still grounded for lack of supplies – though fuel was plentiful everywhere.

******

4. Technology

With the improving intelligence situation (see more below) with eight spies in reserve and growing, one LS of effort was transferred from spy training (down to 3) to research (up to 21/22) on 5 November, with medium tank reliability (L6) being resumed. This was repeated on 7 November, with special forces (L5) back on the drawing boards and 22/22 projects again under research.

Just the two research projects were completed during the month, with supply organisation given another boost on 30 November due to current logistic problems in the east.



******

5. Espionage

A review of international mission priorities on 1 November saw the following decided:
  • Turkey – spy strength 1, 50% c-esp; 50% party support. Changed to 100% party support.
  • Spain – spy strength 6, 100% c-esp. No change.
  • Manchukuo – spy strength 2; 50% c-esp; 50% disrupt NU. Changed to 66.6% c-esp; 33.3% disrupt NU.
  • Japan – spy strength 2; 66.6% c-esp; 33.3% disrupt NU. No change.
By 10 November Japanese spy strength had risen to 3; c-esp was taken to 100% of the mission effort. After some bloody exchanges, Japanese spy strength was down to 1 by 21 November, with the mission adjusted to 33.3% c-esp; 66.6% disrupt NU, in response to the more favourable conditions.

The same day, with 11 Soviet spy teams now in reserve, the Manchurian mission was tweaked again to take it back to 50% c-esp; 50% disrupt NU.

The following table details the number and identity of spies caught by the USSR within its borders or on their overseas missions (a total of 29, down four from October) and the progress of the four Soviet foreign missions.


Of note, despite the whole effort in Turkey being directed to supporting the PCP there, all the ground made in October was lost (-3% support recorded), if the reports were to be believed, with no change detected in Spain. National unity in both Japan and Manchukuo was again reduced a little – an important part of the strategy to get them to the point of surrender as early as possible. Strategic weapons attacks were another key part to that strategy – especially the planned nuclear devices.

******

6. Theatre Summaries

As seen before, progress in the Far East was slower than had been hoped, principally due to the related factors of supply difficulties, little air support and ground combat. This in turn made the Japanese more aggressive in the Central Sector, where they attacked more often than the Soviets. Total casualty rates, especially from Soviet air attacks, were down significantly from the month before. The continued progress of the 6th Army on the Pacific Coast remained the one really substantial bright spot. for the Soviets.



******

South East Asia had seen only minor changes this month. Malaya continued to be neglected by the Allies, while at first there was some surprise that the Japanese may have re-invaded the Philippines, where the Allied liberation army was still largely in place. There was no additional information available on the apparent Japanese advances in southern Sulawesi.


Allied neglect in Malaya was plumbing new depths, with Kuala Lumpur lost again. A sole US Marine EF under British command was the only unit contesting the Japanese forces there. The Thais seemed to have departed and no other Allied units had been brought in to assist, with Singapore still enemy-occupied.


The situation in the Philippines was explained, with (incongruously) pro-Japanese rebels appearing in northern Luzon. They should soon be dealt with by a nearby British division.



******

In Australia, things had not quite been mopped up yet, with a Japanese mountain division loose in New South Wales and Japanese marines holed up in Adelaide.


There was no change to the situation in the wider Pacific area.
 
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The difficulties in the central sector are unfortunate - perhaps Stalin needs to "encourage" some of his generals? I don't think it will matter much though if the situations remains broadly as is in the left and right flanks though.
 
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I like the new format, it’s easier to grasp the situation from the maps and tables as well.

1.1 Eastern Sector
The naming of the sectors show we’re progressing, there’s no more northern sector :)

supply problems still come back to haunt, but regardless it’s going well and the problems seem to be more nuisance rather than show stopper.

I also like the fact that strat bombing is a thing as well now :)
 
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New format seems quite fine to me, no trouble seeing where things are going this month. or not going, as it were...

November saw supply problems across the front have a noticeable effect on Soviet combat operation for November. The Central Sector was particularly hard hit by shortages, with the air base of Irkutsk basically out of commission for the month, and those to the east of it on limited operations only. Poor supply also badly affected a number of ground battles. The two combined meant the Japanese were able to be far more aggressive in the Central Sector in particular, though the Soviets still made some gains.
"Far more aggressive" here must be understood as "committing more forces to the future Manchurian pocket". :D

As Soviet progress was made towards Nikolayevsk na Amure, a new southern objective of the port city of Tumnin was added to 6th Army’s list.
I realize that at this stage, the Soviet geographers may still experience some confusion due to the national lack of maritime expertise, but that looks suspiciously more like an airbase than a port to me at least. :oops:

Some spare IC was invested in beginning a high-cost heavy mechanised division, though subsequent cutbacks to US Lend Lease would slow its production significantly in coming weeks. Still, it was an investment for a possible future war for Europe.

That seems...quite heavy indeed. I'm always leery of 4-width combat divisions as they tend to play badly with the combat width rules that determine how many divisions can join a battle. Of course if the intent is to use this division in a more isolated matter rather than in concentrated attacks then the extra MEC brigade should help it hold position on the exploitation.

Hopefully we can fuel this thing...

This prompted another series of infrastructure upgrades in the Far East and a couple of ‘weak links’ in the Trans-Siberian Railway back west near Magnitogorsk. All were put to the top of the queue (11 in all, at 0.29 IC each).
Excellent call, hopefully these finish in time for the spring campaigning season.
 
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Quick response: Professor, you spotted what the Soviet geographers did not! They are already at work helping to lay track on one of those railway upgrades in Siberia. :D It should be fun in the coming Winter ...:eek:
I realize that at this stage, the Soviet geographers may still experience some confusion due to the national lack of maritime expertise, but that looks suspiciously more like an airbase than a port to me at least. :oops:
Fixed!
 

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Quick response: Professor, you spotted what the Soviet geographers did not! They are already at work helping to lay track on one of those railway upgrades in Siberia. :D It should be fun in the coming Winter ...:eek:
Fixed!
Why do I have a sneaking suspicion that this railway addition may only be of use for the General Secretary himself, and not even as a passenger? :oops:
 
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Definitely no complaints from me about the new format :) As above, the spreadsheets do make some of the lists a little easier to parse.

Question: could this theatre be diverting supply effort from the Far East, hence causing some of the problems over there in recent weeks? If so – damn pesky rebels, but well done game.
Definitely worth looking into; if my knowledge of HoI2 mechanics is correct (and if the same principle carries over to HoI3 like I think it might), then occupied non-core territories should still provide a small but not-insignificant portion of their resources to the occupier. Probably not a huge amount, all told, but if you're already running close to the margins, even a small fluctuation can have an impact.

Though of course, this...

...is not helping matters, either.

The situation in the Philippines was explained, with (incongruously) pro-Japanese rebels appearing in northern Luzon. They should soon be dealt with by a nearby British division.
Historically speaking, the Japanese did set up a notionally-Philippine collaborationist government, and there was a small faction of pro-Japanese diehards. I don't think they were ever that popular or a real force in local politics, but they did apparently have enough support to put together their own militia.
 
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Definitely worth looking into; if my knowledge of HoI2 mechanics is correct (and if the same principle carries over to HoI3 like I think it might), then occupied non-core territories should still provide a small but not-insignificant portion of their resources to the occupier. Probably not a huge amount, all told, but if you're already running close to the margins, even a small fluctuation can have an impact.
Ah, hadn’t been thinking of that aspect as well, which could be adding to it. My initial thought (as the stockpile is healthy enough, so assume it is a distribution problem) was that the movement and combat being done by the forces battling the Finns may be sucking up a bunch of extra supply, thus lowering the amounts available in the Far East, which were already hard to supply anyway.

And this latest bout in the East roughly coincides (with a small lag) with the start of the rebellion: other than those bomber wings later in the month, no new units have been deployed in or transferred to the East for quite a while now (because of those supply issues). I will have a bit of a look next time to see if I can find some more evidence, as this is now a significant operational factor.
 

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Ah, hadn’t been thinking of that aspect as well, which could be adding to it. My initial thought (as the stockpile is healthy enough, so assume it is a distribution problem) was that the movement and combat being done by the forces battling the Finns may be sucking up a bunch of extra supply, thus lowering the amounts available in the Far East, which were already hard to supply anyway.

And this latest bout in the East roughly coincides (with a small lag) with the start of the rebellion: other than those bomber wings later in the month, no new units have been deployed in or transferred to the East for quite a while now (because of those supply issues). I will have a bit of a look next time to see if I can find some more evidence, as this is now a significant operational factor.
I'd actually missed the question earlier, or I'd have answered: No, the rebellion in Finland has no comprehensible effect on the supply situation in Siberia (I say "comprehensible" as a CYA-speak in case there's some obscure knock-on cause-and-effect chain that's confusing the game system). Simply put, if the revolts in Finland were draining your supply needs, your supply slider need would increase accordingly. Supply sent out to units in the field is taken directly from the stockpile and won't be affected by fluctuations in supply production/demand unless your stockpile empties out.

As has been analyzed before the issue is one of throughput and upgrading the TSR will alleviate this as much as can be done (unless you want to start chaining transport planes to supplement the railways - a significant and potentially backfiring undertaking!). Most likely the drop in November is due to weather conditions, although I'm at a loss as to which modifier(s) or game code describes the exact effects.
 
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EDIT: Forgot to say; the new layout and format does get the point across so if it is easier for you to produce then please continue, especially if it gives more time for this hinted at HOI3 mod of great complexity. :)

That seems...quite heavy indeed. I'm always leery of 4-width combat divisions as they tend to play badly with the combat width rules that determine how many divisions can join a battle. Of course if the intent is to use this division in a more isolated matter rather than in concentrated attacks then the extra MEC brigade should help it hold position on the exploitation.

Hopefully we can fuel this thing...
That was my thoughts on seeing it. But it is very Soviet; 1 tank regiment, 3 motor-rifle (mechanised) and 1 artillery regiment (and all the bits HOI doesn't include in the tail) is a classic Cold-war era Guard's Motor Rifle Division OOB.

But then the Soviets never expected to fight for long before things went nuclear so weren't overly concerned with fuel or logistics. If nothing else we lack the shear number of nukes for that plan to work, so logistics are more of a worry!
 
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EDIT: Forgot to say; the new layout and format does get the point across so if it is easier for you to produce then please continue, especially if it gives more time for this hinted at HOI3 mod of great complexity. :)


That was my thoughts on seeing it. But it is very Soviet; 1 tank regiment, 3 motor-rifle (mechanised) and 1 artillery regiment (and all the bits HOI doesn't include in the tail) is a classic Cold-war era Guard's Motor Rifle Division OOB.

But then the Soviets never expected to fight for long before things went nuclear so weren't overly concerned with fuel or logistics. If nothing else we lack the shear number of nukes for that plan to work, so logistics are more of a worry!
There was a little bit of role play in that monster mech division. Designed really for trying to blast through the corps-per-province wall of German units in Eastern Prussia, and some of the powerful French mech divs I built when playing them to beat said Germans originally. Will hopefully see one day whether it works.

The Soviets are getting closer to their first nuclear weapon, and part of the plan is definitely to use it on the Germans if/when it comes to the Reverse Unthinkable. Stalin will show them all the mercy you would expect him to after essentially losing to them in 1943-44 and then getting rescued by the French in this ATL.

The mod is going along well, and I’m learning about the various required aspects for HOI3 modding as I go along. I have to invent around 20 new countries, modify many of the rest, change all the existing alliance arrangements, review the associated event chains (after learning how to do that), etc.

But I’ve done all the new flags required, come up with some standard formats For things like starting techs, political and organisational percentages for ideology/government combinations, ministers, laws, divisional templates, diplomatic alignments and so on, that can basically be copied from an Excel spreadsheet into the relevant text files. That and using, leaving alone or copying as much as I can of what’s there.

I’ve also done the really important things like fiddle around getting new load screens I’m happy with and fancy colour portraits for all heads of state of major powers (of which there are ten)! :D Once all the countries are set up, diplomatic arrangements all changed, events and decisions reviewed, I‘ll then do the map changes. All I’ve done there so far is one small section, to get some initial familiarity with the HOI3posedit tool to see what it can do. Then it’ll be off to do the map and OOB changes ... all good clean fun, but necessarily slowing down my AAR rotation a bit.

My aim is to get it to the first beta point where I can do some quick automated play through for checking stability, balance and playability. Then maybe I’ll write it up and start putting it on limited release for play testing for anyone who may be interested in having a look at it.
 
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It looks like the logistics will continue to be an issue on the Eastern Front, who would have guessed...

At least your Strategic bombers are making life even more miserable for the IJA. They are really quite weak to enemy interceptors (another consequence of the Air Defensiveness bug). My TB-3's got caught by a big swarm of Messerschmitt's in 'Odin', and I also lost over 25% of one wing's health. Of course you could add Ftr or Int to protect them, but then you give up some of their range of course.

As @El Pip stated, the glorious heavy Guards Motor Rifle Division is very much Cold War era Soviet stuff. Considering how close to the Soviet Union the Allies are, I'm not surprised the Red Army is starting to field these juggernaut Divisions. As for how to fuel it, I don't think that would be such a huge problem, as on top of the Caucasus oil fields, the Soviet Union has direct control of the Romanian oil fields, and the Iranian oil fields (as Iran has recently been incorporated as a new SSR). Not to mention the yet to be discovered West Siberian Petroleum Basin. If anything, the Soviet Union will have access to a lot more fuel than OTL. Now, getting the fuel there might be a problem, but I'm just going to pretend that wasn't part of the question and bask in the magnificence of Arm, Mec, Mec, Mec, SP-Art. I for one am curious to see how such a monstrous unit will perform in the war with the west, if in fact such a war were to break out after Japan is taken out.

In other news, the nuclear programme is still likely to end up with Moscow covered in radioactive dust, if not worse.

The Eastern front is doing beautifully. Soon Nikolaevsk na Amure will be liberated, allowing for more supplies to be shipped in. If things continue this way, the Eastern sector will be able to roll down the coast, gradually cutting of the Japanese from their own merchant navy, until the entire Kwantung Army is trapped in a continent-sized pocket covering Manchuria, and the Chinese inland provinces. That could be magnificent, though some would argue such a plan would overstretch the Soviet lines.

I'm also eagerly anticipating your modded HOI3 AAR.
 
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The next chapter is now ready to drop, but first picking up on previously 'unanswered mail', some of which goes back a few weeks: not forgotten, just taking my time with the mod schedule, which is currently taking up about half the time I've previously been devoting to AAR writing and reading! But there's no rush - all in its own good time.
The difficulties in the central sector are unfortunate - perhaps Stalin needs to "encourage" some of his generals? I don't think it will matter much though if the situations remains broadly as is in the left and right flanks though.
I think supplies and weather are probably the main problems - in-game, Stalin's means of persuasion are unrealistically understated! :D
I like the new format, it’s easier to grasp the situation from the maps and tables as well.

The naming of the sectors show we’re progressing, there’s no more northern sector :)

supply problems still come back to haunt, but regardless it’s going well and the problems seem to be more nuisance rather than show stopper.

I also like the fact that strat bombing is a thing as well now :)
Glad you like it! It has made the udates shorter, more succinct and quicker to write, for sure. Yes, the north is pretty much wound up - its just the very slow movement speeds up there stopping it from habving been completely eliminated yet. Slow but steady enough - it's a long war, though.
New format seems quite fine to me, no trouble seeing where things are going this month. or not going, as it were...
Happy to hear that. As for rapid progress - well, the coming bitter winter ain't going to hasten things, either. :confused:
"Far more aggressive" here must be understood as "committing more forces to the future Manchurian pocket". :D
That's the spirit!
That seems...quite heavy indeed. I'm always leery of 4-width combat divisions as they tend to play badly with the combat width rules that determine how many divisions can join a battle. Of course if the intent is to use this division in a more isolated matter rather than in concentrated attacks then the extra MEC brigade should help it hold position on the exploitation.

Hopefully we can fuel this thing...
Will see how the AI uses them ... just want to have a few 'big clubs' in the bag for when it comes time for the heavy hitting. ;) Fuel production is no problem, and hopefully supply in Europe will be easier than it has proved in the east!
Excellent call, hopefully these finish in time for the spring campaigning season.
The way things are going ... there may be another round after these are done!
Definitely no complaints from me about the new format :) As above, the spreadsheets do make some of the lists a little easier to parse.
Excellent! They are saving me words, too. The next update tries to hit the sweet spot of giving something to those who like words, maps, details or tables/stats (or, like me, a combination of all of them).
Definitely worth looking into; if my knowledge of HoI2 mechanics is correct (and if the same principle carries over to HoI3 like I think it might), then occupied non-core territories should still provide a small but not-insignificant portion of their resources to the occupier. Probably not a huge amount, all told, but if you're already running close to the margins, even a small fluctuation can have an impact.

Though of course, this...

...is not helping matters, either.
I'd actually missed the question earlier, or I'd have answered: No, the rebellion in Finland has no comprehensible effect on the supply situation in Siberia (I say "comprehensible" as a CYA-speak in case there's some obscure knock-on cause-and-effect chain that's confusing the game system). Simply put, if the revolts in Finland were draining your supply needs, your supply slider need would increase accordingly. Supply sent out to units in the field is taken directly from the stockpile and won't be affected by fluctuations in supply production/demand unless your stockpile empties out.

As has been analyzed before the issue is one of throughput and upgrading the TSR will alleviate this as much as can be done (unless you want to start chaining transport planes to supplement the railways - a significant and potentially backfiring undertaking!). Most likely the drop in November is due to weather conditions, although I'm at a loss as to which modifier(s) or game code describes the exact effects.
OK, makes sense. Let's hope it works.
D'oh, and there I go forgetting that Supplies are produced with IC, not an on-map resource... In my defense, I haven't actually touched the game in a while.
One should hardly blame oneself for these arcane HOI3/Paradox game mechanics! ;)
Historically speaking, the Japanese did set up a notionally-Philippine collaborationist government, and there was a small faction of pro-Japanese diehards. I don't think they were ever that popular or a real force in local politics, but they did apparently have enough support to put together their own militia.
A brave attempt to explain this game blip - I salute you, sir!
It looks like the logistics will continue to be an issue on the Eastern Front, who would have guessed...
Yeah, cost of doing business, isn't it? <sigh>
At least your Strategic bombers are making life even more miserable for the IJA. They are really quite weak to enemy interceptors (another consequence of the Air Defensiveness bug). My TB-3's got caught by a big swarm of Messerschmitt's in 'Odin', and I also lost over 25% of one wing's health. Of course you could add Ftr or Int to protect them, but then you give up some of their range of course.
Had I realised it, the INT available had enough range to protect the mission I sent them on - by about 10km! It was a bit lazy and I got deservedly punished for taking them for granted.
As @El Pip stated, the glorious heavy Guards Motor Rifle Division is very much Cold War era Soviet stuff. Considering how close to the Soviet Union the Allies are, I'm not surprised the Red Army is starting to field these juggernaut Divisions. As for how to fuel it, I don't think that would be such a huge problem, as on top of the Caucasus oil fields, the Soviet Union has direct control of the Romanian oil fields, and the Iranian oil fields (as Iran has recently been incorporated as a new SSR). Not to mention the yet to be discovered West Siberian Petroleum Basin. If anything, the Soviet Union will have access to a lot more fuel than OTL. Now, getting the fuel there might be a problem, but I'm just going to pretend that wasn't part of the question and bask in the magnificence of Arm, Mec, Mec, Mec, SP-Art. I for one am curious to see how such a monstrous unit will perform in the war with the west, if in fact such a war were to break out after Japan is taken out.
As mentioned in an earlier comment on this subject, there was some role-playing going on here, and I wanted to build the biggest and nastiest division I could. Plus, I know what the French have and wanted something that could match them or heavy German divisions. There won't be a lot of them, I think. As mentioned above, fuel production shouldn't be a problem, but logistics could be. But after the Far East, the west will appear luxurious. And all those technical supply improvements I've been busily researching to help there will be very handy when the time comes for the west, too.
In other news, the nuclear programme is still likely to end up with Moscow covered in radioactive dust, if not worse.
They will be told that it is good for them. Like smoking and vodka. The Bomb is getting within reach now - cringe in fear, Berlin! :mad:
The Eastern front is doing beautifully. Soon Nikolaevsk na Amure will be liberated, allowing for more supplies to be shipped in. If things continue this way, the Eastern sector will be able to roll down the coast, gradually cutting of the Japanese from their own merchant navy, until the entire Kwantung Army is trapped in a continent-sized pocket covering Manchuria, and the Chinese inland provinces. That could be magnificent, though some would argue such a plan would overstretch the Soviet lines.
Some good predictions there - even if the snows prove a tougher challenge than the IJA in the coming month!
I'm also eagerly anticipating your modded HOI3 AAR.
Nice to hear. Making real progress on it. A bit more to do before I feel comfortable unveiling some teasers in a 'dev diary AAR', but getting closer. :)

All: On to publishing the next chapter now. Thanks for your support - and patience!
 
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Chapter 22 – December 1945 New

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Chapter 22 – December 1945

AuthAAR’s Note: I’ve may slowed down the ‘refresh rate’ on new episodes a bit while I work on my HOI3 mod, but have not abandoned the story! The next instalment follows: again, I’ve tweaked the presentation a little, trying to strike what I feel the right balance to be for detail and summary, table and graphical presentation.

In part, I’ve re-inserted a little more detail on the map summaries, in part for presentation purposes, aided by the fact that with weather (December in the Far East) and supply factors, the pace of operations slowed down a fair bit. I’ll deal with the weather effects briefly in the chapter. But there are some significant research advances that move the story closer to some other ‘exciting’ (!!
:eek:) possibilities too.


******

1. The Far East Front - General

As we get back into events, the Soviets are (slowly) closing in on the last enemy remnants trapped in the northern pocket.


Weather will prove a major factor during the month, with relatively few battles and attacking made that much more difficult. Temperatures in the southern half of the theatre typically range from -6 to -10C. In the northern pocket, it is in the mid -20s.

An example from a battle later in the month illustrates the rough effect of this on attacking power (with the ‘interesting’ prospect of an Indonesian general commanding a marine division in Manchurian colours! It also drastically reduces movement speeds as well, contributing to the slow progress.


Otherwise, one battle has carried over: a Japanese attack on Mordaga, in the Eastern Sector.

******

2. Eastern Sector


The situation in the Eastern Sector in early December 1945, with the Soviets cautiously on the advance in increasingly difficult conditions.

Most of the fighting occurred either in the first week or last couple of weeks of the month, with a lull in the middle as units advanced – or just hunkered down in the frigid conditions. The fight for Mordaga was lost by 2 December, and proved to be the first of three Soviet defeats in that province as the new Soviet defending units slipped in as the Japanese slowly advanced on the province (the weather of course also slowing most movement down to a crawl).

Easily the largest battle in any sector for the month was fought for Ushuman from 2-7 December, with almost 3,000 men killed on both sides as the Soviet attackers won a hard-fought victory. The province had still not been occupied by the end of the month, after a new Japanese unit slipped in on 30 December. That battle was still in progress as the year ended.

Japanese CAS made a rare appearance on 8 December, the day after the Imeni Poliny Osipenko was occupied by the Soviets. They were intercepted, but not until after they managed to kill a few Soviet defenders. They did not return for the rest of the month and no counter-attack on the province eventuated.


Elsewhere, apart from the successive failed attempts to defend Mordaga, the Soviets won a battle in Obluchye from 17-21 December, but then lost to a Japanese counter-attack (24-26 December) shortly after they occupied it. But Soviet advances in the east of the sector without opposition resulted in three other provinces being occupied, including the port of Nikolayevsk na Amure. With casualties from air raids added in, the Soviets inflicted significantly more damage than they sustained, even though the Japanese did most of the attacking and won more battles than they lost.


Eastern Sector Operations – December 1945.


A summary of battles (above) and advances.

******

2. Western Sector

There were only four battles along the rest of the front stretching to Mongolia during the month, one of those a small skirmish for Selanga Burin. The rest were all victorious Soviet attacks, increasing in scale as the month progressed. But as 1945 ended, none of these had yet turned into a liberation of the provinces concerned, even those won comparatively early in the month.

The largest – the attack on Mogocha – lasted five days, resulting in heavy enemy ground casualties and even more from the air, with 2,004 enemy killed there in five days of raids from 24-28 December.


Western Sector Operations – December 1945.


Battle summary.

******

3. Finland Sector

The month saw the latest Finnish insurgency successfully wrapped as 1945 drew to a close. Early in the month, Stalin was about to sign a death warrant for the commander of 46 SD when he received a shocking report stating that his full-strength division had been attacked in Lahti by a brigade of leaderless Finnish partisans and had run away with barely a fight!


But this order was rescinded shortly afterwards, when it became clear MAJGEN Lazarev was simply moving on west to secure Lammi while more Soviet troops moved in behind him into Lahti. 64 SD took almost a day to defeat the Finns’ reckless assault, but Soviet honour was retrieved – and Lazarev’s life spared.


No other serious ground actions were fought for the rest of the campaign, which consisted of Finnish partisan brigades and HQs running without a fight as the Soviets progressively regained all occupied territory towards the end of the month, with occasional Soviet air support chiming in.


Finnish Operations – December 1945.


A summary of battles (above) and advances.

******

4. Production and Logistics

The ‘mixed’ 24 Tank Div was deployed in the West on 2 December, with a new NAV wing based in Riga.


Another ‘mixed’ tank division was deployed in the West on 3 December. A new ‘heavy guards’ division began training the same day.


On 8 December the forward air base at Tyndinskiy (supporting the Eastern Sector) had Level 4 facilities installed and the Level 5 expansion begun.

The supply drain increased as the month went on, so that projects at the bottom of the queue had to be put on hold as the supply stockpile began to drain quickly. It had been stabilised by the end of the month.



******

5. Research

A long-awaited milestone was reached on 15 December, with strategic rocket research completed and attention now directed at turning theory into practice. It was expected work on the first operational flying bombs could begin in May 1946.


Five breakthroughs came over a few days later in December, over just a three-day period. Significant among these was civil nuclear research progressing to the point that an actual nuclear bomb could be developed: the necessary research was commenced without delay. RADAR-guided missiles would improve Soviet hard and soft attack capability; submarine development continued to improve, as did training for the new STRAT bomber arm.



******

6. Espionage

The loss of a spy in Turkey on 10 December caused a change from 100% Communist Party support to a 50/50 split between that and counter-espionage. Another spy was lost there on 13 December and three would fall during the month.

Similarly, on 19 December a spy was lost in Japan, so that mission was changed form 1/3 counter-espionage and 2/3 NU disruption to a 50/50 split.

By the end of the month, a whopping 40 enemy spies ha been neutralised in the USSR or in the four foreign missions. Five Soviet agents had been lost but nine trained, so overall strength rose to 67 agents in the field or in reserve.

In terms of political results, NU in Japan and Manchuria had been eroded again, but there was no change in Communist Party support in either Spain or Turkey.


The Foreign Ministry believed the attitude of the two respective heads of state may be making headway even harder than it would normally have been: both were described (somewhat pejoratively) as ‘pig-headed isolationists’. They may have described themselves more as ‘independently-minded nationalists’, but these judgements are always subjective.



******

7. Theatre Summaries

As noted above, fighting was subdued and advances limited in the Far East during the fierce winter, though the Northern Pocket had almost been eliminated. Total casualty rates, especially from Soviet air attacks, were down even further from the month before, though heavily in the Soviet’s favour.



******

In Australia, the Allies were close to wrapping up the Japanese invasion there, where the enemy had just been ejected from Adelaide.


South East Asia appeared to show no changes in occupation at all. Malaya was quiet – the Allies seemingly still asleep at the wheel there, with Singapore and Kuala Lumpur still controlled by Japan.


However, it looked like the French had sent in a British Marine Division to take Guangzhou from the Japanese in Southern China. They were now advancing on Hong Kong – and had 12 Allied air wings in support from Guangzhou’s air field.


The Americans had lost Johnston Island in the Pacific, but otherwise nothing of significance had changed there either.

Given the amount of interest in Japanese naval strength after all these years of war [and given the overwhelming Soviet spy presence in Japan and presumed Allied reporting, I thought it fair enough for a brief tag to get general info], a Special Intelligence Estimate indicated Japan still had a good number of capital ships – especially aircraft carriers – operating under the Imperial Navy’s ensign.

 
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Winter weather makes the going slow, but we're surely going steady. Allies in Malaya are still going without a brain, but the Allies bright spot is, Australia is about to become Axis-free. Nice update!

But this order was rescinded shortly afterwards, when it became clear MAJGEN Lazarev was simply moving on west to secure Lammi while more Soviet troops moved in behind him into Lahti. 64 SD took almost a day to defeat the Finns’ reckless assault, but Soviet honour was retrieved – and Lazarev’s life spared.
More like Lazarov, ha! :D

Five breakthroughs came over a few days later in December, over just a three-day period. Significant among these was civil nuclear research progressing to the point that an actual nuclear bomb could be developed: the necessary research was commenced without delay. RADAR-guided missiles would improve Soviet hard and soft attack capability; submarine development continued to improve, as did training for the new STRAT bomber arm.
It seems like the fetial prie.. ee commissioners were of the populist faction this month, they fed the chicken with the good stuff apparently
 
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Another month another exciting...well, intriguing...erm, ah, well, stuff happened. :p Can't expect too much in the winter, I suppose, and hey, at least we can build nukes now!

The next chapter is now ready to drop, but first picking up on previously 'unanswered mail', some of which goes back a few weeks: not forgotten, just taking my time with the mod schedule, which is currently taking up about half the time I've previously been devoting to AAR writing and reading! But there's no rush - all in its own good time.
I'm starting an office pool on how long before Bullfilter AARs slide into Pippian temporal mechanics. Any takers?

Another ‘mixed’ tank division was deployed in the West on 3 December. A new ‘heavy guards’ division began training the same day.


That's a damn beefy division that ought to do quite a lot of damage once it hits the field. Shouldn't be as fuel-hungry as our mobile divisions either. Of course, by mid-1946, will leg infantry still be relevant or will the world have moved on to motor and mechanized line divisions?

Five breakthroughs came over a few days later in December, over just a three-day period. Significant among these was civil nuclear research progressing to the point that an actual nuclear bomb could be developed: the necessary research was commenced without delay.
I see you trying to sneak this past your eagle-eyed readAARs. Thought you could just mention our new nuclear capabilities in a throwaway sentence and no one would notice, didn't you? Yeah, well, I noticed. Let the thread now become appropriately hyped. :D
 
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stnylan

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Going to be quite quiet for a couple of months I presume as the winter really bites.

Maybe there is something in the water of Malaya that makes everyone sleepy?

The Japanese may have a considerable number of carriers - but surely all that means is that allied submarines have more targets? I mean, we all know there are only two types of vessel, right? :)
 
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Wraith11B

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They might have a considerable number of carriers, but if they've pushed all their CAGs into the sea, then it doesn't matter...
 
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