The conference room in the Kremlin is thick with cigarette smoke, sweat and desperation.
The top officers are huddled near the large wooden doors at the end of the room. A mid ranking staff officer has his ear to the door.
Kliment Voroshilov, the defence minister enters and marches forward. Any of you girls gathered up enough courage to knock yet? He demands.
“Not me” answers Mikoloyan the trade minister. “The Boss is still in his chambers no one has seen him for three days now.”
“Berea, can’t you go in, you have his ear”. “No comrade, I may have his ear but he would just as soon have my head!.”
“Zhukov what news from your new command in the North?”; “My orders are to hold so hold I have. Not a step back but the fascists are pushing to the north and south of Kalinin. “
“How can I mount an attack with no reserves and everyone in the front line?”
“Well I have moved some forces forward to engage the fascists south of Tula”, Timoshenko adds “but like you we have few reserves and dare not thin the main line too much that would be suicide both militarily and dare I say personally.”
Suddenly the conversation is halted by the rattling of locks and the large wooden doors at the end of the conference room swing open. Comrade Stalin advances, tired and dishevelled but with determination in his eyes.
“Gentlemen my most reliable officer general Rasputitsa has arrived and achieved what you did not. He has halted the enemy advance East of Moscow.”
“Is the line elsewhere held?”
“Yes comrade” the assembled officers cry in unison.
“Then the time to strike has come. Fresh troops have been arriving which I have held for this attack They are now yours, use them wisely.
Don’t disappoint me, the gulags are a lot emptier than in ’36 so there is plenty of space for failures.”
Finland: Fresh troops bolster the line at Murmansk.
The Soviet 11th Mech corps pulls back to the line by the lakes which is now stabilised.
Leningrad: To the south fresh troops are fed into the shells around the two small bulges across the Leningrad /Kalinin rail line but cannot yet mount an effective counter attack.
Moscow: A succession of localised counter attacks are mounted against the German defence ring around the city.
Here and further south a succession of 1s and 2s on the dice rolls give very disappointing results with a total of 1x AR, 3xNE, 1xDR and only two DEs and a HX.. The one big success is against 17th Panzer, just south of the capital, which is reduced to a cadre and the city is again relieved from isolation.
Voroshilovgrad: The forces which surged west attack an SS Motorised division but simply push this unit back and fail to achieve any meaningful results.
Around Tula however some support troops are eliminated and further penetrations break the German line into two sections.
Kharkov; is surrounded but freshly raised troops take advantage of a small gap in the ring around the city to form a defence hex adjacent to the city. (no doubt short-lived)
South/Crimea: The line holds and continues to fortify awaiting the arrival of the Axis forces.
Losses: Soviet: = 6
Axis Non Isolated =10; Isolated = 6.