The General Staff Archives

Europa Games and Military History

Month: May 2017

DEC II 1937

Nationalist Turn

Weather;  No Change (Land; North (D) = Mud. South ( E)= Clear.  Seas; Med = Rough. Atlantic = Storms)
Supply: 2-3-8 art 61, 2-10 AA 88 (KL), 1-10 lt tk Dro (KL) in “Cuenca pocket” feed off GSPs
Replacements:  3 SRP, ½ SRP (CTV)  recovered. SM. 79-1 repaired.
Pacification; Motril

Moves: 1 Res Pt expended to increase Rail Cap to 15.5.

Overun 1: 5-6 xx 61,2-3-6 art 62, 3-2-6 inf 2LE and 5-6 inf xx 53 Overun 3211 (Alcazar de San Juan) @ 10:1.  20305 inf XX 12 (U3) Eliminated, Fort destroyed.

Overun2:  2-8 mtn Guard and 1-8 lt 3, 3-4-5 inf XX 14 and 6-6 inf XX 108, 4-6 1RG and 2-6 inf Tdi overrun 3311 @ 10:1. Eliminating 2-3-5 inf XX 41, 1-6 eng 1 (U3).

Overun 3: 6-6 XX infs 5,63 overun 1-2-6* (U4) in 2609 (Nth of Madrid) @ 12:1

Air Activity;

Sortie 1. Ju52g4e and He 111B (KL) escorted by Me 109B (KL) fly airfield bombing mission to 3033 (Sth of Zaragoza) . I-16/t5 intercepts and successfully bypasses  the Me 109B (KL)  screen engaing the He 1118 (KL) Returning it for no loss. Ju 52g4e bombs and misses.

Sortie 2. Mxd A escorted by CR,32  fly airfield bombing mission to 3609 (Albacete) . I-16/t5 intercepts and engages the CR.32.  No results. The Mxd A avoids the AA fire bombs and Hits.

Sortie 3 Cr.32Bis (CTV) successfully bombs Madrid airfield  knocking out the airfield. (3rd Hit)

Sortie 4: Mxt T airdrops to Cuenca 2 successful, 2 scatter.

Naval Activity: NTs ferry rebuilt 1E Cav from Ceuta to Malaga

Attack 1:  4015 rough (on theUneda/ Lorca road) Supplied 6-6 infs XX 102, 152, 4-6 inf XX 112, 1-6 art 10L, 2-6 infs 8rif, 5Ath (Col),   Unsupplied 1-6 inf 3ML (Col) and Supplied 5-6 infs XX 54, 62, unsupplied 1-6 inf 5MR (Col), 1-8cav (Req) with GS Mxd B attack 2-3-5* inf XX 25 (An),  1-5 infs 19Jul (An) @ 6:1 (-1) =  DH. Lose Mej, Conf, Met, Lar. Advance 102xx, 112XX

Attack 2; 3110 clear (NE Alcazar de San Juan)   Unsupplied 6-6 inf XX, 2-8 mtn guard, attack 1-5 mech 2 (U2) @ 8:1  = DH. Advance 106XX, Guard.

Attack 3: 3111 clear/fort (Nth Alcazar de San Juan) Unsupplied 3-4-5* inf XX 33, and 1-5 mech 1 and

: 5-6 xx 61,2-3-6 art 62, 3-2-6 inf 2LE and 5-6 inf xx 53 and 1-8 lt 3, 3-4-5* inf xx 14, 4-6 art 1RG, 2-6 inf Tdi (col) attack 2-3-5 unf XX (U4) @ 9:1 (-1) = DE.  Advance 61 XX. Fort destroyed

Attack 4: 3709 rough (East of Madrid) 6-6 inf XXs 5, 63 attack 1-8 mtn 6 (U2) @ 9:1 (-1) = DE. Advance 5XX

Attack 5: 2811 clear/fort (SE of Madrid). Unsupplied 7-6 inf XX 13, 6-6 inf XX 4, 4-6 inf XX 15, 1-8 lts 4,8, 1-8 mtn 8, 4-6 art 2RG, 2-6 art 4P and over river 2-3-5* inf XX Cac, and over river 2-3-5* inf XX 3Med with GS Ro 37 attack 5-6XX 46ch (U4) @ 6:1 (-1) = DH advance 14XX. Fort destroyed

For Whom the Bell Tolls: Dec II 1937

Dec II 1937: The government flees Madrid!

Republican Turn

VPs : Lack of Goberneto collapse (+15 VPs)
French border; Closed
Guerrillas; Ineffective
Supply;  Cuenca  pocket feeds of GSPs. (2 available)
Replacements; 4 SRPs recovered. 1 SRP (An) recovered. 1-6 sec 1GC replaced. R-Z repaired.
Government: loyalist government re-locates to Alicante.

Air Activity:  Sortie 1; I-16/t5 escorts R-S, SB-2 on Airfield bombing to 2235 (Logro) Intercepted by Me 109B (KL) who Aborts I-16/t5 and is Returned. Bombs fall wide.

Sortie 2; 3916 (E of Guadix) 1-16/t5 escorts R-Z on airbase bombing mission, intercepted by CR.32 which tries to bypass the screen and is aborted. Bombs miss target.

Attacks: None.

DEC I 1937

Narrative

Decision time for the Republic!  (If you do not want to know why until you have read the turn details skip this section and return afterwards) The Republic now have something of a dilemma. The whole arc of troops north of the breakthrough to Cuenca around Madrid is U2 so half strength and the Nationalist attack thrusting south immediately north of Madrid has found a weak spot where there are insufficient troops at hand to counter the attackers. The dilemma therefore is do the Republicans maintain the front between Aranjuez and  Alcazar de San Juan or pull back tight around the city. Holding the front line will prove difficult but winter is on the way and if muddy conditions return in the South this will compensate for the U2 status halving the defence thus  it may be possible to hold the line and throw any reserves and new recruits to the Defence of the capital. This is attractive because the Nationalists can mass a higher density for offensive moves and a weak front will collapse more quickly.

The counter argument is that maintaining a strong line sucks more troops North to Madrid and eventually these will be cut off. Pulling back allows the Republicans to amass sufficient troops such that even unsupplied they will have sufficient strength to counter attack and breakout south and this allows more troops to escape thus preserving precious manpower for the summer of 1938.  The overriding backdrop to the dilemma is the superior manpower pool of the Nationalist forces will allow them to sustain losses while the Republic is seeing their Replacement Pool grow monthly..

The disadvantage of pulling back is that Madrid will probably fall a bit quicker. However the Nationalists have a higher troop density and can pierce the lie at multiple points so a reduced front at a higher density is preferable.

Thus the desition is made to pull back the line in a phased withdrawal into an “Egg” defence around Madrid taking advantage of the rivers to the south. The bulk of the troops will attempt to break the Nationalists deep but narrow penetration East towards Cuenca and to move South with as many troops as possible. To minimise Nationalist gains in dry weather this withdrawal will be phased leaving a nominal defence line gradually falling back East. However the northern wing will be allowed to loose contack with the Madrid defenders until it halts along the foothills of the Cordillera  Iberica.  The move will not be entirely passive and a counter attack force will be retained aroud Cuenca to try and reduce “The pocket”.

Looking at the bigger picture the Anarchist move to Grenada (frustratingly never getting the resources needed to capture the city) will be abandoned and eastern Andalucía abandoned.

On the Right wing offensive efforts to eliminate Zaragoza will be supplied but other than that the intension is to conserve SPs in winter except where local counter attacks are needed to seal any significant Nationalist breakthroughs. There will not be an attempt to hold in situ if falling back allows higher troop concentrations. In other words the Republic are resigned to the fact that they will not be able to hold the front static in in its present extent 1938 as they had successfully done throughout the summer of 37.  If however  they shorten the line and increase the average stack value from around 4/6 defence factors to 6/8 they hope that will stabilise the line for the 1938 Nationalist summer offensive.

Isolated breakthrough at Cuenca

Dec I 1937: Republicans Isolate breakthrough at Cuenca.

Nationalist Turn

Weather;  Land; D = Mud. E= Clear  Seas; Med = Rough. Atlantic = Storms
Supply: 2-3-8 art 61, 2-10 AA 88 (KL), 1-10 lt tk Dro (KL) in “Cuenca pocket” feed off GSPs
Replacements:  1/2 SRP recovered

Moves: 1 Res Pt expended to increase Rail Cap to 15.5.

Air activity: Mxd NT delivers 3 GSPs to ”Cuenca Pocket” , 1 Scatters.

Attack1:  2711 Part City (Eastern Hex of Madrid) Supplied 4-6 inf XX16, 4-6 inf XX 4. 4-6 art 2RG, 1-6 sec 8GC, 1-8 lt infs 4.5.6 and 7-6 inf XX13, 6-6 inf XXs 3,63, 3-2-6 infs 1LE, 3LE, 1-8 mtn 8, 2-6 art 4P attack 3-6* inf XX 4, 2-6* inf 11Th (Int), 1-2-6 sec 9GA, 1-6 infs 4, 17, 1-6 sec 4GC, 1-6 art 1L (U2), 3pt Garrison @ 3:1 = HX. Lose 1LE, 3LE. Advance 2RG, 15XX, 4,5,6 lt, 6GC, 8 mtn  Garrison dispersed

Attack2; 3308 clear (E of Cuenca) Supplied  6-6 inf XX 102, 5-6 inf XX 11, 6-6 inf F (Mxd), 2-1-8lt tk (CTV)  bab, 2-1-8 art D, unsupplied 1-8 mb B (CTV), 2-1-8 cav 1E (Col) and Unsupplied, 2-10 AA 88 (KL), 1-10 lt tk Dro (KL), U2 isolated 1-8 lt tk LE, 1-8 mech S 2-3-8 art 61, (U2 isolated) with Mxd A, Ro 37 GS attack 3-4-5* inf XX 17, 2-3-5* XX 16, 2-1-8 cav 2 @ 4:1 (+1) = DH. Lose 17 XX.  Advance 11XX, F XX (Mxd), Bab,B

Exploitation: Bab, B to Cuenca

Republican Turn

VPs : Lack of Goberneto collapse (+15 VPs)
French border;  Open.

Guerrillas;  (Initially. Hit Airbase at Cacares aborting the  SM.79- stationed there. However after rules check and thought , I have “ruled” that an intrinsic garrison prevents a guerrilla attack because it represents a  military presence in the hex. RAW in 39.D defines a garrison as “treated as a Static (Unit Type) “ so there is some ambiguity there . What do others think? Changed to rail hit at 3221

Reinforcements: All arrive unimpeded. I-16/t5 repaired.

Air Activity; Sortie 1; I-16/t5 escorts R-5, Pe.540 to bomb air base at 2235 (Logro) Intercepted by ME 109B who bypasses the I-16/t5 and aborts the Pe.540 for no loss. Insufficient bombing strength remains and the mission returns.

Sortie 2:  A-101 escorted by I-16/t5 attempts to bomb airbase at 3414 (E of Valdepena). CR.32 successfully bypasses the I-16/t5 and Kills the A-101 for no loss. (N +2 VPs)

Naval Activity;  NT-3,4 make 2  transport journey to ferry 4 Res pts from Gijon to Bibao. BBTF-1/CATF react but have Zero combat strength due to Stormy weather.    Transports complete journeys and return in the exploitation phase.

Replacements;  3 SRPs, ½ SRP (Int) recovered.

Moves: With no prospect of an early capture of Cuenca or the Madrid/Catalayud rail line the Republic decides after much debate to withdraw into Madrid and pull back behind the river abandoning a number of fortified positions to increase average defence strength.

Attack1: 2733 Clear (NW Zaragoza) All adjacent attack unsupplied 3-4-5* inf XX 73 @ 7:1 (-2) = DE.  Advance 2 XX.

Attack2: 3302 clear (East of Cuenca) Unsupplied (U1) 3-6* infs 66,67, 1-8 tks 6,10, 1-6 art 2L and Supplied 6-6 inf XX 35 (Int), , 2-6 eng ZM, 2-1-8 tks 1,P , unsupplied 4-6 inf XX 47, 3-6* inf XX 63 and  3-6* inf XX 22, 2-3-5 inf XX 29 and 1-8 AA vian (CTV), 2-1-8 cav 1E (Col) @ Supplied1-2-6 arts 13, 19, 2-6* inf 1V, 3-4-5* inf XX 17, supplied 6-6 inf XX 45 (Int) 2-6* inf 13 Dom (Int) 2-6 inf 150 (Int), 2-1-8 attack 6-6 inf XX 12, 2-1-8 art O, 3-1-2 sge art cav 2 @ 4:1 = DE.  102 cadre eliminated on retreat.  Advance 35 XX (Int), 68 XX, 45XX (Int), 19 art, 13 art ZM. (R +2VPs)

NOV II 1937

Nationalist Turn

Weather;  Land; Mud, Seas; Rough.
Supply; GSPs generated at Vallilodid. The changing weather puts some front line hexes of both sides out of supply including the remaining anarchists at Grenada and the furthest most hex of the Nationalist advance towards the Cueca pocket.
Replacements; 2 SRPs recovered. 1-6 sec 10GC replaced. Ju 52g4e finally repaired and put into service
1 Res Pt expended to increase Rail cap to 15.5.

Air Activity;
Sortie 1; Mxd T airdrops 2 GSPs to “Cuenca pocket” and both survive the drop despite the muddy conditions.
Sortie 2; CR.32 and CR.32Bis fly cap over Cuenca

Attack 1; 32611 Rough (Nt of Madrid) Unsupplied 4-6 art 2RG 1-6 bdrs 8Car, 7Car, 1-6 sec 6GC, 1-8 lt6, and unsupplied 3-2-6 inf 1LE, 6-6 inf XX 4, 4-6 inf XX 15, 1-8 mtn 8 and unsupplied 3-2-6 inf 3LE, 7-6 inf XX 13, 6-6 inf XX63, 2-6 art 4P with HE 45 (KL), HE 111b (KL) GS attack 2-3-5* inf XX13 @ 7:1 (-3) = HX . lose 7Car, 8Car. Advance 4XX, 15XX.

 

For Whom the Bell Tolls: Nov II II 1937

The Nationalists threaten Madrid. (c) Ken Newall, 2017

Republican Turn

VPs : Lack of Goberneto collapse (+15 VPs)
French border; Open.
Guerrillas; Break rail line at 3418 (West of Cordoba)
Replacements; ½ SRP recovered. A 101 repaired.  All delayed supplies arrive from France..
Attacks; None.

 

For Whom the Bell Tolls: Nov II 1937

Reinforcing the breakthrough to Cuenca (c) Ken Newall, 2017

NOV I 1937

Narrative

Carlo Benes picked up the pile of files on his desk and rushed down the marble stairs bounding them two at a time. Papers flew out of his arms and fluttered like leaves in autumn down past the ornate balustrade of the stairwell to the terrazzo floor below.  He was briefly re-united with them as he reached the hallway before bursting through the double wooden doors into the central courtyard.  The building surrounding him on three sides was the government offices where he had resided as governor of the West Madrid district for the last 4 years. Without stopping he flung the files onto the raging bonfire in the centre of the courtyard and raced for the archway to the motor pool. As he rounded the corner he saw the last of the cars laden with his comrade clerks and minor functionaries disappear in a cloud of dust down the main street to the East. The bastards!. Four years as comrades together and they could not even wait for him. Such was the terror instilled by the imminent arrival of the Nationalists which rumour placed a few streets away to the West.  He ran in the direction of the disappearing dust cloud, his legs pumping for all he they were worth, his arms extricating them from his uniform as he went for it would not bode well for him to be caught in his governor’s jacket by the rebelsThe shot rang out from somewhere behind him hitting him between the shoulder blades and propelling him forwards. Stumbling downwards into the dirt he knew that at least he would be spared the ignominy of the firing squad.

Note: The Narrative will now continue on a Monthly basis over winter.

For Whom the Bell Tolls: Nov I 1937

Breakout to Curacao (c) Ken Newall, 2017

Nationalist Turn

Weather;  Land Clear, Seas rough.
Supply; GSPs generated at Valladolid
Nationalist mtn redoubt @ 2903 (s of Catalayud) rolls for elimination (IsolatedU4) remaining 1-6 art 2 succumbs
The Republican redoubt in 2412 (mtn pass on the Medina to Campo/Madrid rail line) Rolls for elimination (U4 isolated) 1-6 inf 12 succumb.

Replacements; 1-8 cav 9. 1-10 lt tk Dro replaced,  4-6 arts 1RG and 2RG formed from deployed replacements. He 45 repaired

Air Activity; Sortie 1:CR.32Bis survives AA and scores Hit on Madrid airfield.

Sorties; 2-6. Rail bombing sorties at Valencia/Aranjuez rail line one  hit scored at 3406.

Naval Activity: Following the effective destruction of the Republican air force. All Task forces return to station in the Med to interdict the ports.

Italian Navy called out for on map operations blockading ports.

Attack1; 3309 clear (SW of Alcazar de San Juan) Supplied 6-6 inf XX 102, 5-6 inf XX 11, 3-1-2 sge art Man (CTV), 2-3-6 art 61, 1-8 mech S, 1-8 lt tk LE, 2-10 AA 88 (KL), 1-10 lt tk Dro (KL) Trspt , Mxd A  GS attack 3-4-5* inf XX17, 2-6 inf 86ch, 0-1-5 cons 4 @ 4:1 (+1) = DE!.  Breakthrough!  XX 11, mech Slt tk LE, AA 88 (KL), lt tk Dro (KL)

Attack 2: 2610 rough (NE Madrid)  Supplied 7-6 inf XX 13, 3-2-6 infs 2LE,3LE, 2-6 art 4P, Unsupplied 6-6 inf XX 33 attack 3-6* inf XX 40 @ 6:1 (-1) = EX. Lose 2LE. Advance 13XX, 33XX.

Attack 3: 2412 (mtn pass on the Medina to Campo/Madrid rail line) All adjacent, unsupplied attack 2-6*IV (U4 isolated) @ 5:1 (-2) = AS

Exploitation;  Transported 2-3-6 art 61 joins 1-8 mech S, 1-8 lt tk LE, 2-10 AA 88 (KL), 1-10 lt tk Dro (KL) and moves to 3207 (Cuenca)  overrunning 0-1-5 cons 6

For Whom the Bell Tolls: Nov I 1937

The pincers snap shut around Zaragoza (c) Ken Newall, 2017

Republicans Turn

VPs; Rep (+15 VPs) for lack of goberneto collapse
French border: Open
Supply: Nationalist breakthrough at 3207 (Cuenca) is U1
The Republican redoubt in 2412 (mtn pass on the Medina to Campo/Madrid rail line) Rolls for elimination (U4 isolated) final unit 2-6*IV succumbs.
Large section of the Republican line is U1 (3209 around Madrid to 2607)
Left flank of Republican line adjacent Grenada is U3.
Reinforcements: Supplies are routed to France to avoid interdiction.
Replacements; 2 SRPs recovered. R-5 repaired.
Guerrillas: Nationalist uncover guerrilla cell in the Guadjana valley East of Cordoba which is dispersed without causing damage.

Moves: Republicans pull out of the 2 extreme left flank hexes (Motril and adjacent).

The main line contracts and pulls back to Aranjuez and units move to reinforce Madrid.

Elsewhere units pull back to seal the breach and isolate the Nationalist spearhead at Cuenca but are not present in sufficient strength to attack.

Operation “Z“ enters phase 2. The left hook;

Attack 1: 2734 clear (North of Zaragoza)  Unsupplied  5-6 inf XX 15 (Int), 3-6* inf XXs 2,5, 2-6* inf 5Car, 2-6inf 162c, 2-1-8 cav 3, 1-6 arts 7L, 8L and 2-3-5* XX infs 23, 38, 1-2-6* inf 21, 2-1-8 cav 1, 1-6 inf 21,  2-6 art 2P, 1-8 mtn art 1 with SB-2 GS attack 3-4-5* inf XX 31, 0-5 cons 3 @ 4:1 = DH  (all eliminated due to no retreat route). Advance 38XX, 23XX, 2XX

The right hook.

Attack 2; 2633 rough (North of Zaragoza) Supplied  4-7 XX mtn 43, 3-4-5* inf XX 30, 1-2-5 infs 1,4, 1-5 inf 6, 1-8 cav Buxo, 1-2-6 art 10 (All Cat) attack 2-3-5 inf XX 2Mad @ 4:1 =  DH.   Advance 30XX, 1,4, 10art.  The pincers snap shut!.

OCT II 1937

Narrative

Eric Tennyson Postlethwaite of the 35th International Division had impressed his superiors from the day of his arrival in Albacete in May and he had quickly obtained promotion for his actions and discipline. The regimen of pit work building a toughness which, mixed with the stoicism of his Yorkshire blood, made him an able and reliable soldier. He now commanded the 3rd battalion and was in action once again leading the charge into Aranjuez.

He had been observing the Nationalists and their Fascist supporters for many weeks and it was clear that they were suffering from a lack of food and ammunition. The bakery had long been looted clean and the shop shelves and smallholdings stripped. The German and Italian tanks and artillery guns made sure that their own troops were well supplied but there just was not enough to go around for their Nationalist brethren who diced daily with starvation and malnutrition. Reports from the outer ring of the encirclement suggested there was little chance of relief from outside as there had been limited activity along the enemy lines for the past 3 weeks, indeed some intelligence reports indicated their lines were being thinned out and troops transferred elsewhere.  Eric could not occupy his mind speculating where they may have gone or if that meant they were planning a move elsewhere; that was for others to determine.   No, he had more important things on his mind for it was clear that the time was now ripe to lead the charge and eliminate the fascist scourge from Aranjuez.   Once more into the breach……

For Whom the Bell Tolls: Oct II 1937

The renewed Republican attack on Zaragoza jumps off. (c) Ken Newall, 2017

Nationalist Turn

Weather;  Clear.

Supply; GSPs generated at Valladolid and  Salamanca. Aranjuez pocket goes U4  Bab/Fal  feed off GSPs) 6-6 inf XX 52 survives elimination roll

1Re pt expended to temp increase rail cap to 15.5pts

Replacements: 2 SRPs recovered . 1-6 sec 2GC, 1-8 lt 2 replaced

Air Activity; Sorties  1 to 3  (CTV)  and  (KL)  aircraft bomb the secondary rail line between  Valencia  and Aranjuez at multiple points scoring one Hit at 3605

Sorties ; 4 & 5. He51 and Mxd B  bomb the secondary rail between Murcia and Guadix scoring Hits @ 4115 and 4214.

Sortie 6; 2x CR32.bis (CTV), CR.32 bomb Madrid airfield avoiding AA and inflicting one hit on the airfield aborting the R-5 on the ground.

Sortie7; Mxd T airdrops GSPs over Aranjuez 1 scatters 2 drop successfully.

Moves; 2Mad XX pulls back out of fort at 2732 (NE Zaragoza) to shorten the line.

Attack 1; 3614 rough (S of the Penebetica Mtn range) Supplied 5-6 inf XX 54, 6-6 inf XX 152, unsupplied 2-1-8 lt tk Bab (CTV) attack 3-6*XX 3 @ 4:1 (+1,-1) = DR. Advance 152XX.

Attack 2; 2612 wooded/rough (East of Madrid) Supplied 4-6 inf XX , unsupplied 3-2-6 inf 2LE and unsupplied 1-8 mtn, 8, 1-6 bdr 8Car attack 1-6 inf 1GC (U4) @ 9:1 (-2) = DE. Advance 2LE, 8mtn

Attack 3; 2609 (NW of Madrid) Supplied 3-2-6 inf 1LE, 2LE 2-6 art 4P, 5-6 inf XX 4 (Req), 7-6 inf XX 13 1-8 lt 6 attack 3-6* inf XX 7, 2-3-5* inf XX 20 @ 3:1 (-1) =  AR.

Attack 4: 3310 clear/fort  (SE Alcazar de San Juan) Supplied 5-6 inf XX 11, 2-3-6 art 61, 3-1-2 sge art Man (CTV), 2-6 inf Tdi (Col), 2-1-8 cav2O (Col), unsupplied 4-6 inf XX Mov and 1-6 enf ZMO, 1-6 art 16L, 1-8 mg Ard (CTV), Supplied 6-6 inf XX 102, 1-6 sec 12GC, 2-6 inf 2 Mel (Col) with GS Ro 37 attack 2-3-5* inf XX69, 2-6* inf 6Ch, 1-6 bdr 4 Car @ 5:1(-1)=  DE. Advance 11XX, 12GC,16L,2Mel (Col). Fort destroyed

Republican Turn

VPs : Lack of Goberneto collapse (+15 VPs)

French border;  Open.

Supply: The isolated Republican redoubt in 2412 (mtn pass on the Medina to Campo/Madrid rail line) Rolls for elimination (U4 isolated) 1-8 art Cab, 1-2-6* inf 16 succumb.

Nationalist mtn redoubt @ 2903 (s of Catalayud) rolls for elimination (IsolatedU4, 1-8 cav 9 succumbs

Aranjuez pocket 6-6 inf XX 13 survives elimination roll.

Replacements:  1.5 SRPs recovered. 1 SRP (Cat) recovered

Moves;. The action around Guadix has persuaded the Republican  forces to pull back from their attempted capture of Grenada (other fronts always had the call on AS points) and to shorten the line.  Phase one is the evacuation of 3920 (immediately E of Grenada)

The attack on Zaragoza is renewed. (Operation “Z”) The left hook

Attack 1; 2735 clear (W of Catalayud)  Supplied 3-6* inf XX 2, 1-6 arts7L, 8L, 2-1-8 cav 1, 1-6 inf21 and 5-6 inf XX 15 (Int), 2-6* inf 5Car, 2-6 inf 152C, 2-1-8cav 3, 1-8 mtn art 1, 1-2-6 secs 6GA, 7GA, 2-6 art 2P and 1-2-6* inf 19, Unsupplied 2-3-5*inf XXs 23,38,64 with GS SB-2, Po.540 attack 3-4-5* inf XX 22, 1=8mtn art 2, 0-1-5 cons 1 (Fal) @ 5:1 = DR. Advance 2XX, 54xx, 19

The right hook (All Cat)

Attack2; Unsupplied 2-3-5 inf xx32 and Supplied 4-7 mtn XX 43 and 3-4-5* inf XX 30, 1-5 inf 6, 1-2-5 inf 4, 1-8 cav Buxo, 1-2-6 art 10, 1-0-R art 1 (All Cat)

@ 4:1 = DR Advance 30 XX 43 XX mtn

The Aranjuez boil is lanced;

Attack3;2911 (Aranjuez)  Supplied  5-6 inf XX46ch, 4-6 inf XX6, unsupplied 2-6* inf 2Ch 1-8 lt tk, and Unsupplied 4-6 inf 66, 1-8 tks 1,6, 10 and supplied 6-6 inf XX 35 (Int), 2-1-8 tks 1,P, 2-6 eng ZM and

Unsupplied over river 2-3-5* inf XX21, and Unsupplied over river3-6* inf 4 and Unsupplied over river 3-6* inf 7, 2-6 inf 15AL (Int), 1-6 art 2L, 1-5 mech 2 attack Isolated U4 6-6 inf XX 52, Supplied via GSPs 1-10 lt tk Dro (KL) , 4-3-6 art Leg (CTV) @ 4:1 (+1, -1) = HX. Lose15AL (Int), 1 tk, 1 lt tk.. Advance 7XX.

(Rep +4 VPs) (N +2 VPs)

OCT I 1937

Narrative

As the Nationalists offensive gains momentum so the Nationalist propaganda was expert in seeking out foreign intellectuals and opinion shapers  claiming that they represented the face of Christianity , Order and Western Civilisation against “Asiatic Communism” This position was reinforced by Soviet Russia’s participation and they forged documents alleging a plot of a revolution involving 150,000 shock troops and 100,000 reserves whereas in fact due to the slow attrition throughout the summer the  republic has practically no manpower reserves left to deploy.  What is particularly interesting indeed almost unique is that the final history of the Spanish Civil War was penned by the losers rather than the winners? Who will be writing the history after this variation of the conflict remains to be seen…..

For Whom the Bell Tolls: Oct I 1937

The Nationalists push South from the Penebetica Mountain range.

Nationalist Turn

Supply;  Aranjuez Pocket. Dro and Leg feeds off supplies 52 XX U3.

Outer hook of Anarchist Grenada envelopment goes U1.

Nationalist pocket SW of Catalayud  rolls for elimination and  1-8 lt 2 succumbs.

Reinforcements; All Divisions are equipped on arrival.

Replacements; No SRPs recovered. 1-8 mech S, 2-1-8 cav 2O (Col) replaced. CATF (2 hits) replaced.

6-6inf XX 102 formed.

Naval Activity: NTs transport Colonial troops to the mainland.

Air Activity:

Sorties 1;  CR.32bis (CTV) escorts Mxd A who stages via the newly captured airfield in 3910 on Airfield bombing mission to 4212 (Lorca). Intercepted by I-15/t25 who attempts to bypass the screen and is eliminated by CR.32bis (CTV).  (Nat +2 VPs) Mxd A  avoids AA and Hits Airfield aborting the R-Z on the runway.  (A very successful raid!

Sortie 2;  CR.32 avoids AA and bombs airfield at 3909 (Albacete) aborting the A-101 there.

Sortie3;  He 111B (KL) avoids AA but the He 45 (KL) is Aborted. Surviving He111B (KL) bombs but fails to hit Madrid airfield.  (I-16/t5 holds back waiting to intercept Transports flying supplies to Aranjuez pocket)

Sortie 4; SM.81 (CTV), SM.79-I (CTV)  Terror bomb Madrid but the feeble bombs fail to impress the local  populace.  (Still the I-16/t5 holds back)

Sortie 5;  Mxd T escorted by CR.32bis (CTV) flies supplies to Aranjuez intercepted by  I-16/t5 who attempts to bypass the CR.32bis (CTV) and is aborted. But only 2 of the GSPs survive the drop the rest being hopelessly scattered

(The Republican Air force now has less than 50% of its total complement on map.)

Attack 1;. 2713 fort.  (East of Madrid) Supplied 2-3-5 inf XX cac, 1-6 bdr 7Car, 1-6 infs 33, 27 and Unsupplied over river 1-8 lt 5, 1-8 mtn 8 and 1-6 mg E, 1-8 lt 4 and 3-6 inf XX 3PN (CTV) , 1-8 AA Vian (CTV) attack  2-6* inf 2Car (U4) @ 5:1 (-1) = EX lose 27,33. Advance Cac XX.

Attack 2;  3915 rough (S of the Penebetica Mtn range) Supplied 5-6 inf XX 54, 6-6 inf XX 152, unsupplied 4-6 inf XX 112, 1-8 cav 1, 2-1-8 lt tk Bab (CTV) with Mxd B attack 3-6* inf 22 @ 5:1 (-1) = DH.  Advance 152, Bab.

Attack3; 3410 fort (NW Albacete) Supplied 4-6 inf XX Mov, 151, 1-6 eng ZMO, 2-3-6 art 61, 2-6 inf Tdi (Col)1-8 mg Ard (CTV) and 6-6 inf XX 102, 1-6 arts 4L, 16L, 1-8 cav 6, 2-6 inf 2Mel (Col) , 3-1-2 sge art Man unsupplied 1-6inf 18, 1-6 sec 12GC with GS Ro 37 attack 2-3-5* infs 10, 42 @ 5:1 (-1) = DR. Advance 102XX), 12Gc, 16L. Fort destroyed.

Attack 4; 2510 mtn (SW Sergova) Unsupplied 3-2-6 inf 1LE, 2LE 2-6 art 4P, 5-6 inf XX 4 (Req), 7-6 inf XX 13 and 4-6 inf XX 15, 1-8 mtn 5, 3-2-6 inf 3LE, 1-8 aslt eng G (CTV) attack 2-6 inf Car, 1-6 art 14L (U4) @ 5:1 (-2) =  HX. Lose 3LE. Advance 4 XX (Req).

Republicans Turn

VPs: Lack of Goberneto collapse (+15 VPs)

French border; Closed.

Reinforcements: Supplies arrive unchallenged following the withdrawal and subsequent depletion of the Nationalist fleet

Replacements ;2 SRPs recovered..

Supply; Nationalist supply Dro and Leg from GSPs in the Aranjuz pocket.

Forts: 3 More constructed on the main East flank, 1 in Ezkudi

Attack 1: 2603 rough (NE Catalayud) Supplied 2-6* inf 5Car, 1-2-6*inf 24, 1-2-6 sec 8GA, 1-8 mtn art 1, 2-6 art 2P and 4-6 inf XX 34, 2-1-8 cav 1, 2-6 nvl 151, 1-6 art 8L attack 4-6 inf XX 2 (Req) @ 4:1 (-1) = AS

Attack 2: 2832 fort (W of Zaragoza) Supplied 3-4-5* inf XX 30(Cat), 1-2-6 art 10 (Cat), 1-5 inf 5 (Cat) 1-8 cav Buxo (Cat) and 2-3-5* inf XX 31 (Cat) m unsupplied 1-2-5 inf 2 (Cat) and 2-3-5* inf XX 33 (Cat), unsupplied 1-2-5 infs 1,3 (Cat) attack 3-4-5 inf XX 21 (U4) @ 4:1 (-1) = EX. Lose  1,2,3,5 (Cat) . Advance 37XX (Cat) , Buxo (Cat), 10 art (Cat). Fort destroyed

SEP II 1937

Narrative

This turn sees an epic breakout attempt by the Republican Navy and a fighting engagement around the whole of the Spanish coast as a mixed force of Republican capital ships, subs and cargo transports attempt to reach their comrades in the north and return supplies to the main front.  By far the largest naval engagement of the war it encompasses almost every element of the naval rules as a Mixed and Sub task force takes on various Nationalist task forces, submarine groups and CDs in daytime and night. (I hope I have interpreted the naval rules correctly in the engagement – any comments welcome) Spoiler Alert if you want to read how the engagement unfolds step by step skip now to the Nationalist Turn and read the rest of this narrative after the Republican turn.  The attempt did not end well with almost the entire Republican fleet being eliminated but it was a close run thing and only the second interception at El Ferrol sealed the fate.  In retrospect the whole fleet should have attempted to disengage immediately but as the die rolls went this would have saved only Cargo transports which would have been easy pickings should they have attempted to return next turn. Was it a good trade-off for the potential gains – probably not.  Was it attempted to see how such an attempt would play out in game terms – probably yes .  Would the fleet have been better utilised covering an amphibious landing behind Nationalist lines – possibly  but no such opportunity has presented itself so far and the small forces involved would be no more than a distraction. So the net result of this adventure is the total destruction of the Republican fleet with the exception of 2 NTs at Bilbao and the reduction of the Nationalist Surface combat felt to BBTF-1 (2 hits). However without anyone to fight this merely represents a very small NGS capability. The other consequence of the reduced capability and especially the elimination of the Republican LCs is that the Nationalists will be able to move their coastal defence regiments to the front line and no longer fear an assault on Morocco.

Nationalists Turn

Supply; Aranjuez Pocket feeds of GSPs  (4-3-6 art Leg (CTV) unsupplied) 8.5 points -1 AECD considered better than 9.5 no AECD

Reinforcements, All divisions engaged so not upgraded except 2Cas replaced and  upgraded

Replacements; HE51 replaced5x 1-6  inf II and 1-6 art 11L replaced  1-8 cav 6, 1-6 sec 8GC replaced.

Vittoria  Pacified.

1 Res Pt expended to Temp increase rail cap to 10.75 pts

Moves; 2 Mad abandons 2631 mtn (NE of Zaragoza) to shorten line,  Nationalists abandon attempts to clear rail north of Vittoria line,  leave screen to protect gains and pull out attack force to redeploy  North of Madrid. (Nationalist accept the late attack on  Euzkadi was too late and they should have finished off the Madrid force first, rather belatedly they are returning to that focus to try to break the stalemate.

Air Activity;

Sortie 1; mxd T air drops 4GSPs into Aranjuez pocket 3 successfully,  1 scattered.

Sortie 2:2x CR.32bis (CTV), CR.32 escort RO 37, HE 45 (KV) on GS mission to 2611 (Northeast of Madrid) intercepted by I-16/t5 which tries to bypass screen and is Returned

Sortie 3; SM.79-1 (CTV) successfully Terror Bombs Madrid (+2VPs)

Sortie 4; HE 51 (KL) attempt to Transfer to Zaragosa and is Returned via Patrol attack by I-16/t5.

Attack1; 3816 rough/3 cap airbase with 1 hit and  1-15/t25, Res pt (NE of Guadix) Supplied 2-1-8 lt tk Bab (CTV), 206 inf FA (Mxd), 1-8 cav 1, 5-6 inf XX 62, 6-6 inf XX 152, 4-6 inf XX 112 attacks 2-3-5* inf XX 25 (An), 1-5 inf RIM (An), 1-6 art 6L @ 4:1 (-1) =  DH. Lose 25XX. Advance 112XX, 152XX, 1 cav, Bab (CTV)  I-15/t25 escapes to Cartagena. Res pt destroyed, airbase captured.

Attack2: 2716 rough/fort. All unused unsupplied adjacent attack 1-6 inf 2 @ 9:1 (-2) = DE.  Advance 3-4-5* inf XX 14.

Attack 3: 2409 (Segovia) Unsupplied 3-2-6 inf 3LE, 1-8 mtn 5, 1-8 lt 6, 1-8 aslt G (CTV) attack 1-8 cav 9 (U4) @ 6:1 = DE. No advance.

Attack 4: 2611 mtn (Mtn pass N of Madrid) Supplied 3-2-6 infs 1LE, 2LE, 2-6 art 4P, 7-6 inf XX 13, unsupplied 5-6 inf XX 4 (Req)  with GS  HE 45, (KL) Ro 37 attack 1-8 cav 10, 1-2-6art 3 (U4) @ 6:1 (-2) = DE. Advance 13XX

Republican Turn

VPs: Lack of Goberneto collapse (+15 VPs)

French border; Closed.

Reinforcements: 1-8 cav 10 rebuilt/converts to 2-1-8 cav 2.

Replacements: 1 SRP recovered.   4 regiments, XX (An) rebuilt.

Air Activity:

Sortie 1; Republicans launch a large co-ordinated raid on the airfield at 3414(West of Valdepenas) 1-16/t5 out of Madrid is patrol attacked by CR.32 bis (CTV) at Toledo for No Effect. The bomber force thus comprises 2x A-101, 2x R-Z,  R-5, escorted by 1-16/t5. Intercepted by  CR32.bis  (CTV), CR.32 over the target.  Interceptors attempt to bypass the screen and I-16/t5 engages and Returns the CR.32. The CR.32Bis engages one of the R-Zs eliminating it for no loss. (Nat +2 VPs)

The  2xA 101s combine and the R-Z, R-5 bomb separately. All fail to hit the airbase (and the Ro.37 on the runway)

Sortie 2; I-16/t5, SB-2 attempt to bomb the airbase at 2235 (Logro). Intercepted by the He 51 stationed there which engages the SB-2 for no effect. Bombers combine to make 1x 2pt attack and Hit.  He 51 returns to Vittoria.

Naval Activity;

NT-1 (Cat) moves offshore at Cartegana  and joins Task force comprising CLTF, LC-1. LC-2. NT-4, with SS-1 sailing parallel with the intention of moving to Bilbao to load valuable attack supplies. The Cargo elements of the task force and SS-1 uses inshore waters to Motril then forms up with  CATF at and moves  into the channel.   All 3 SS groups (CTV) fail to contact the Task but CATF  (-1 hit) makes contact in 4322. (Out of range of Naval Patrols)

As CATF enters the combat Zone of SS-1 it is engaged. SS-1’s torpedoes run wide and CATF scores a Hit sinking the sub.

CATF now engages Task force.  CLTF forms the Screen and all LCs and NTs form the main body.

Round1:  Both players allocate all gunfire to the engaging group.

CATF(Nat)  makes 2x 1pt attacks. CLTF (PA). CLTF makes 1x1pt and 1x2pt attack.

Both miss.

Neither wish to disengage and prepare for Round 2.

CATF (Nat) changes fire order to 1x 2pt attack and scores 1 hit. CLTF also scores 1 hit

Again neither wishes to disengage and fight Round 3. CLTF makes 1x 2pt attack. Both miss

Round 4 (as before) both miss

Round 5 (as before) both miss

Round 6 (as before) CLTF hits and sinks CATF ending the engagement.

Task force now moves toward to 4027 (Ceuta) under cover of darkness and is engaged by the Ceuta CD.

CD allocates the 1 pt to the reserve group. The escorting CLTF (2 pts) has insufficient strength to fire at night. The CD reserve group fires with a strength of 3/2 pts at the Cargo main body making a 1pt attack and misses.

The Task Force continues into the Atlantic and passes Cadiz as dawn breaks.  As the task force rounds the Punto de la Estaca (west of  El Ferrol) it is intercepted by BTF-1  in 0111.

Round1:  Both players allocate all gunfire to the engaging group.

BBTF(Nat)  makes 1x 1pt attack and 1x2pt attack. CLTF (PA) makes 2x1pt attacks. Both miss.

Neither wish to disengage and prepare for Round 2.

BBTF (Nat) changes fire order to 3x 1pt attacks and misses.  CLTF also misses

Again neither wishes to disengage and fight Round 3.

BBTF reverts to 1x 1pt and 1x2pt attacks and CLTF makes 1x 2pt attack. Both score 1 hit.

Round 4 – CLTF makes 1 pt attack. BBTF makes 1x 2pt attack both Hit.

CLFT is sunk, BBTF has 1 point remaining.

Cargo group (PA/CAT) fails to disengage and BBTF initiates Round 5 making 2x 1pt attacks and sinking LC-1

Cargo group (PA/CAT) fails to disengage and BBTF initiates Round 6 making 2x 1pt attacks and misses.

Cargo group (PA/CAT) fails to disengage and BBTF initiates Round 7 making 2x 1pt attacks and sinks LC-2

Cargo group (PA/CAT) fails to disengage and BBTF initiates Round 8 making 2 x1pt attacks and sinks NT-1 (Cat)

NT-4 successfully disengages and moves to Gijon ending the engagement.

Total VPs from this voyage (Nat +28), (Rep +12)

Moves: Republican forces shorten the line West of Madrid.

Attacks; None

SEP I 1937

Narrative

The Nationalists have clearly taken some bad strategic decisions. They now realise that the attack on southern Euzkudia was too little too late and they should have finished off the Madrid offensive first, rather belatedly they are planning to return to that focus to try to break the stalemate and relieve Aranjurez from the North.  They should have maintained the pace of advance against Madrid and accepted that on points they were not going to win. However by diverting troops to  the San Sebastian area they have achieved nothing other than bringing a few troops into supply yet the cost has been that the 1937 summer has been squandered for little gain.  At this point in the game I considered Suing for an uneasy peace with a divided Spain ripe for a future war. The Nationalist situation in terms of VPs is a lost cause. They are haemorrhaging VPs at a rate of 15 pts turn with no prospect of reducing this in the near future (The problems of solitaire play  – I never have much regard for VPs normally) However on reflection it occurred to me that this is not an historical game. It is the Variable rebellion version. With the uprising going differently this could well have coloured the thinking and strategies of the combatants.  If for example Germany had not declared war on the US it is unlikely but in an alternate reality just possible that the administration may have pursued a Japan first policy. Likewise in this Spanish version the Nationalist have decided on a “People’s Army First” policy accepting perhaps that they may have to settle the dispute with some concessions of autonomous republics along the Northern coast. This works for me anyway so the game goes on!

FWtBT No 4 - SEP I 37

FWtBT No 4 – SEP I 37. Picture (c) 2017 by Ken Newall

 

Nationalists Turn

SupplyAlanzuez pocket  U1 Isolated, Northern Cordellera Iberica (SW Catalayud) U2 Isolated Left flank Nationalists in  Aragon U4. Republican mountain redoubt at 2614 eliminated (1-6 inf 3)4 GSPs generated at Valilodid

Reinforcements: 112 XX inf deploys supported as 4-6 XX.  Ju52G4e badly damaged in transit and needs 10 weeks of  repairs.

Replacements: ½ SRP (Col), ½ SRP (CTV)

5×1-6 Inf III, 1-6 art  III form 6-6XX inf 152 @ Jaen

Naval Activity: NT-5 transports Tdi to Seville and returns to Ceuta

Air Activity: Mxd T transports 4 GSPs to Aranjuez pocket. Mxt Republican fighter @ Madrid attempts to intercept and is Patrol Attacked by CR32Bis (CTV) @ Toledo and is Aborted. GSPs Airdropped . non Scatter.

SM.81 (CTV) breaks rail line at 3707 (Cureca )

Mxd B, He.51 Mxd A, CR.32bis (CTV) fly to bomb airfield at 3916. Intercepted by I-15/t22, I-5/t25. CR.32bis, HE.51 jettison payload and form screen. I-15/t22 engages CR.32Bis (CTV) and is aborted. I-15/t25 engages He51 and eliminates it (+2 VP) First air-air Kill of war! Bombers make 2x 1 pt attacks and score 1 hit.

Nationalist Capital ships and subs (CTV) withdraw to Ceuta.

Republican Po,540 out of Valencia contacts CATF-1 but bombs fall wide.

Republican R-Z x2 , A-101 out of Cartagena contact and sink 1 pt SS-1. (+4 VP)

Attack 1;  3816 rough/fort (NE of Guadix) Supplied 4-6 inf XX  112, 3-6* inf XX 2Sor , 2-6*PA (Mxd), 1=8 cav 1 and 6-6 inf XX 152, 1-6 sec 20GC, Unsupplied 1-6 sec 24Gc, 1-8 cav 5 attack 2-3-5* XX 25 (An) @ 6:1 (-2) = DR. Advance 2S0r XX, 112XX, Fort destroyed

Attack 2;  2707 rough (45 miles East of Madrid). Supplied 5-6 inf XX 61, 3-2-6 inf 3LE, 1-8 mtn 5, 1-8 aslt G (CTV), unsupplied  4-6 inf XX 63, attack 3-6* inf 7, 1-6 sec 16Gc, 1-0-8 AAC @ 4:1 (-1) = AS

Attack 3. 1935 wooded rough (NE Vittoria) Unsupplied 3-8 XX 23 Mar (CTV) and, 4-6 infs XX 1,3, (Req), Supplied 7-6 inf XX 13, 2-5 inf AGM (Fal), 2-5 inf 6 (Req), 3-2-6 1LE and unsupplied 3-2-6 2LE, 2-6 art 4P, 5-6 inf XX 4 (Req), 1-8 mbike B (CTV) 1-8 lt tk LE attack 1-2-4 infs 1,11 (Bas), 1-4 infs 3,12 (Bas), 0-1-4 cons 2 (Bas) , 1-6 eng 6 @ 6:1 (-2) =DH lose 1,11. Advance 1XX (Req), 6 (Req)

Republican Turn

VPs (+15) for lack of gobernetos collapse.

French border; Closed.

Supply; Nationalist Aranjuez Pocket feeds off GSPs.

Reinforcements: 1 pt supply delayed lands unopposed as do new arrivals.

Replacements; ½ SRP recovered, ½ SRP recovered (Bas).  Replacements. 1-2-6 art 10 (Cat),1-6 art 17 (Bas).1-2-4 infs 1,11 (Bas) 3-6* inf XX 70. 2-3-4* inf XX (Cat) equipped. R-5 repaired.

Forts; Constructed at  3511, 3310,3010 and 2811. Largest single turn construction.

Air activity; Rail line at 2011 (Medina de Campo) broken.

Attack 1; 2632 mtn (NW Huesca) Supplied 4-7 mtn XX 43 (Cat), 1-8 mtns 1,2,3 attack 1-6 art 9L, 1-8 cav 6 (U4) @ 7:1 (-2) = DH. Lose 6 Cav Advance  43 XX (Cat)

Attack 2; 2803 mtn (SW Catalayud)Unsupplied,  all surrounding forces totalling 5XX, 9 III/X attack 3-6* inf XX 2Cas U4 isolated @ 5:1 (-2) = DR. Eliminated  – no retreat path. Advance 3-6* inf 19.

AUG II 1937

Narrative

The earlier arrival in October of 42 Soviet Ilyushin 15 “Chato” biplane fighters,  31 Ilyushin 16 Mosca monoplane fighters and subsequently a squadron of Katiuska fast bombers (SB-2s) prompted the Nazi supporters of  Franco to increase their own  aircraft transfers to be named “The Kondor Legion”. Soon the skies over Madrid and elsewhere were often populated by rival aircraft. The Republican civilian watchers on the ground cheered when an aircraft was hit assuming, of course that they were Nationalists and certainly the stubby Soviet machines held their own against the HE 51s of German manufacture.

What the watchers were unaware of however was that the soviets were instructed pursue then enemy over Nationalist lines only if they remained within gliding distance of friendly forces.

FWtBT No 4 - AUG II 37

FWtBT No 4 – AUG II 37. Picture (c) 2017 by Ken Newall

Nationalists Turn

Weather;  Clear

Supply; “Aranjuez Pocket”  feeds off GSPs

Eastern most 3 hexes of the Nationalist forces investing Euzkadi become U1 (Due to advance by Basque division adjacent rail to Vallalodid carelessly unguarded)

Northern Madrid force U4. Isolated mountain redoubt at 2616 survives elimination roll.

2 Nationalist Hexes at top of Cordellera Iberica (Sw Catalayud) U1 Isolated

Reinforcements: 3-6 i9nf XX 2FN(CTV)  withdrawn. 1-8* inf Mar (CTV) upgraded. Conversions delayed.

Replacements: 2-1-8 cav1E (Col) 1-6 sec 24GC, 4-6 XX 3 (Req),  1-6 art 11L art Replaced.

Cr.32 and CR.32bis(CTV) Replaced

Air Activity: sortie 1:  Large GS Mission force of Mxd T, SM.81 (CTV), He.45 (KL), R0.37 escorted by  2X CR.32bis (CTV) fly to 3011 (SW of Aranjuez).  Intercepted by Mxd F.

Mxd F attempt to bypass the screen .  First CR.32bis misses, second Returns the fighter.

Sortie2: Po.540 out of Valencia contacts CATF-1 on supply interdiction avoids AA and scores a HiT! (L +4 VP)

Sortie3; He.51 (KL) breaks rail line at 2703 (W of Catalayud.

Naval Activity: NTs, transport 2-1-8 cav1E (Col) to Cadiz.

Attack 1; 2024 rough/fort (S Euzkadi), Supplied 2-5 inf 6 (Req), 3-2-6 inf 1LE, 2-6 art 4P Unsupplied 4-6 inf XXs 1,3 (Req)and Supplied 7-6 inf XX13, Unsupplied 2-5 inf AGM (Fal), 1-8 lt tk LE, 1-8 mb B (CTV) and Supplied 5-6 inf XX 4 (Req), 3-2-6 inf 2LE, 1-8 mtns 4, 7 Attack 2-3-5* inf XX 5 (Bas) , 2-4 inf 13 (Bas) 1-2-4 inf 6 (Bas)@ 6:1 (-2) = DR. Advance 13 XX, 1LE, 4P, 6 (Req), AGM (FAL)

Attack2: 2706 rough (Rail line 60 miles East of Madrid)  Unsupplied 4-6 inf XX 83, 2-3-* inf 1Sor and Supplied 5-6 inf XX 61, 3-2-6 inf 3LE, 1-8 mtn 5, 1-8 lt 6, 1-8 aslt G (CTV)  with Ju52g4e GS@  6:1 (-2) = DR.  63XX, 5, 6.

Attack3; 3011 clear (SW Alanjuez). Supplied 4-6 inf XX 107, 2-6 inf Tdi (Col), 2-1-8 cav 2O (Col), 1-8 mg Ard (CTV and 5-6inf XX 17, 2-10 AA 88 (KL), 3-1-2 sge art (Transported) and Unsupplied 2-1-8 lt tk BAB (CTV), 1-10 lt tk (Dro) KL), 4-3-6 art Leg (CTV), 2-1-8 art ) with Mxd T, SM.81 (CTV), He 45 (KL), R0 37 Attack 2-1-8 tk 2, 4-6 inf XX 65, 1-2-6 art 4, 2-6 inf cadre 45 (Int) @ 3:1 (+1)  = HX. Lose  17 to Cadre.  Advance Bab (CTV),Ard (CTV), O, TDi (Col), 2O (Col)

Exploitation; . Bab (CTV), DRo (KL) break rail lines in place 2911, 3011 (Aranjuez & adjacent)

Republican Turn

VPs:  (+15 VPs)  for  Gobernetos continued survival

French border; Closed.

Supply; “Arunjuez pocket” back in supply.

Reinforcements: The following delayed assets are landed. 1 art RPs, 1 arm RP. 1 ASP returned.

(The Nationalists are wondering about the efficacy of the blockade. No supplies have been destroyed and all except 1AS are now landed. This is at the cost to date of 1 Hit on SS-3 (CTV), 1 Hit on a CATF-1

And a cost of 8 VPs)

Replacements: 1.5 SRPs, 0.5 SRP (Int) recovered.  65 XX , 6Ch 2 tk rebuilt (manpower exhausted)

Attack1:  (SW Aranjuez)  Supplied 4-6 inf XX 6, 5-6 inf XX46ch, unsupplied 2-1-8 tk1, 1-5 mech 2 and  Supplied 6-6 inf XX 35 (Int), 2-6 eng ZM, 2-6 inf 15AL (Int), 1-8 tks 8, 10  and 3-6* infs 67, 70, Unsupplied 2-3-5 inf*XX 41, 2-1-8 tk P attack  1-8 mg ard (CTV), 2-1-8 lt tk (Bab (CTV), 2-1-8 art o, 2-1-8 cav 2O (Col), 2-6 inf Tdi (Col) @ 5:1 (-1+1) = HX. Lose 70XX. Advance 35XX (Int), 1 tk, Ptk. (+4 VPs)

AUG I 1937

Narrative

The Nationalists failure to break through to Madrid has caused a new strategy and the capital city has come under intense air bombardment.  All residential districts with the exception of the  fashionable Salamanca district have been attacked  in an attempt to break the civilian morale. The estimate of bombs dropped varies but on 16th August Colonel Wolfram reported that his Ju 52s had dropped 36 tons on the city. In comparison the WWII bomb loads (A single Lancaster carried 10 tons) this was not intense but as the first concentrated Terror attack on a capital city the psychological effect was considerable.

The Chilean poet Pablo Neruda who lost his house in the raid wrote;

Come and see the blood in the streets

Come and see

The blood in the streets

Come and see the blood,

In the streets

FWtBT No 4 - AUG I 37

FWtBT No 4 – AUG I 37. Picture (c) 2017 by Ken Newall

Nationalists Turn

Weather; Weather: Clear/Clear, Clear/Rough in Atlantic. (This is indeed correct thrown a 6 for weather 4 times in a row!)

French border; Closed.

Supply; Loyalists in Madrid area U3, Nationalist left flank at Zaragoza U2.

3 GSPs generated at Jaen, 3 @ Cordoba.

Factories: Seville back in Production.

Replacements:  4 SRP (Nat), 1 SRP (Req), 1 Comp (CTV). 1-8 lt 6, 3 divisions, 3 regiments. (Nat),  2-10 AA88 (KL),  All (CTV) replaced

Moves; 3-6 inf XX 2FN (CTV) overruns 1-8 inf GP U2 in fort at 2614

Nationalists  expend 1Res Pt for temp rail-cap increase of 5 Res.

Air Activity

Sortie 1; Mxd B  Hits Motril Harbour for 2 more hits.

Sortie 2; Cr32Bis (CTV), CR.32 fly airfield bombing mission to Madrid. Mxd F intercepts and misses CR.32, AA fire Aborts Cr.32. CR.32Bis  (CTV) misses.

Sortie 3; SM.81 Strategically Terror bombs Madrid (+2 VPs)Sortie4: Mxt T drops 4 GSPs to 2911

Air Activity; Sotie 1;, A-101 flies to Valladolid to bomb airfield. Intercepted by C2.32bis (CTV). Turned Back but  Cr.32Bis (CTV) Killed!  (L +2VPs)

Naval Activity; BBTF-1 moves off coast of Asturia to blockade Gijon. Other Combat units position to interdict supplies in the Mediterranean.  All combat groups in the Med are spotted but bombs drop wide. CATF-1’s AA also misses.

Attack1;  2705 rough/fort (E of Catalayud) Unsupplied  4-6 inf XX 63 and Supplied 5-6 inf XX 51, 3-2-6 inf 3LE, 1-8 lt 6, 1-8 mtn 5,  1-8 aslt G (CTV)  and  Unsupplied 3-4-5* inf XX 32 with Ju.52g4e Attack 1-8 cav 7, 1-6 infs 1,8,16, 2-1-R art TB (U2) @ 6:1 (-2) = DR. TB eliminated no retreat, Fort destroyed.  Advance 5, 6, 51

Attack2; 2035 rough (Vittoria). Supplied 7-6 inf XX13, 2-5 inf AGM (Fal), 3-2-6 inf 1LE, 2-6 art 4P, Unsupplied 1-8 mb (CTV), 1-8 lt tk LE, 4-6 inf XX 1, (Reg), 2-5 inf 6 (Reg) with He.51  Attack 2-3-4* inf XX, 0.5 Garrison @ 6:1 (-1) = DE.  Advance 13 XX, AGM (Fal), Garrison dispersed.

2 art RPs Turned back.

Exploitation:  1-8 lt tk LE, 1-8 mb B (CTV) to 2136 (SE of Vittoria)

Republican Turn:

VPs (+15) for lack of gobernetos collapse.

French border; Closed.

Supply: Nationalist forces in the San Sebastian area are back in supply.

“Aranjuez Pocket”  feeds off GSPs

Reinforcements:  Delayed upgrade of 2-7* mtn (Cat) to 4-7 mtn XX 43 (Cat) occurs.

Naval Interdiction: The following landing attempts are made:

Barcelona; 3.5 arts RPs arrive, 2.5 Turned back. 2.5 arms RPs arrive. O.5 turned back

2 AS points arrive.

Cartagena; 2 AS arrive 1 turned back.

Replacements:  SRPs recovered; 2.5 (PA), 0.5 (Int), 0.5 (Int), 0.5 (Bas)

2-3-4 inf 2 (Bas), 1- 6 eng 1 (Bas), 0-1-6 art Otiz (Bas), 1-2-5 infs 1,2 (Cat) and  1 -8 mtn 6, 2-6 eng ZM, 3-6*infs XX 24,68, 1-8 inf GP, 1-6 mg 4, 2-1-8 tk P, 2-6 inf 15AL (Int) Replaced.

2-3-4* infs XX 1,3,4 (San). Equipped

Ideological Re-purification;  Barcelona Revolt Suppressed.

Attack 1; 2704 rough (W of Catalayud).  Supplied 5-6 inf XX 15 (Int), 4-6 inf XX 67, 3-6* inf XX 1, 2-6 Nvl 151, 2-1-8 cav 1, 2-6* inf 5Car, Unsupplied 2-6 art 2P and Unsupplied U2, 3-6 inf* 8, 1-2-6* inf 22  Attack 3-4-5* inf XX 32 @ 5:1 (-1) = DR. Advance 15xx (Int), 47xx , 1 cav

Attack2: 2531 rough (headwaters of the Aragon river) Supplied 4-7XX mtn 43 (Cat), 1-0-R art 1, (Cat), 1-5 inf 6 (Cat), 1-8 cav Buxo (Cat), and 1-8 mtn 1,  unsupplied 1-8 mtns 2,3. Attack 1-2-6 art 42, 1-5 inf 1Cord (Fal) U2 @ 5:1 (-1) = DR.  Advance 43 XX (Cat)