At the opening of the turn the French remain positively inclined towards the Loyalists and the French border remains open (1 rolled.) As in the previous player turn, the Insurgents have 3 sections of the front out of supply, those east and northwest of Teruel (kept in fair shape via unit shuffling) and then the larger one north of Madrid. As before, GSPs are used to feed most of the units in the center, while the ends use shuffling. With 4 GSPs available this turn, 4 RE’s in 3 of the out of supply hexes are feed via GSP (so even the shuffling isn’t ‘necessary’ this turn, while the 2 Mad XX in the salient goes without at U-1 black. For the Loyalists two 4 hex long sections of front are out of supply. One NW of Teruel with units, three U-1 and one U-2. The other is in SE Andalucia, with 3 units in the northern most hex of the section and 3 more in the other 3 hexes, all U-1. As has been the case all game essentially, the PA units in the NGobs are isolated but in supply. The PA generates 3 GSPs each in Madrid, Albacete, Lorca and Valencia.
All guard forces for Santander and Euzkadi are in place, with Asturias’ garrison having been released quite some time ago. No pacification or purification efforts are undertaken.
It’s quite the reinforcement turn for the Loyalist, huge in fact, as they start getting full XX’s this turn, which along with the change in weather ensures that there won’t be a general collapse on the Loyalist side (Sam had indicated his previous fear of such after getting through this ini phase.) Firstly, the 27 CM Inf XX shows up at Barcelona as does a Cat eng III and a Cat mtn X. Two X’s of Internationals show up at Albacete, a rail Art X arrives in Madrid, and finally another X of Santanderos arrives in Santander itself. Another such X is released, as is the 1st San Cons X. Two Basque Inf X’s are released, the 9th & 10th. A/S is imported at Bilbao, Valencia, & 2 pts at Alicante, and then 1.5Art at Bilbao and 4.0 Art at Tarragona are offloaded from Soviet ships. The Soviets also provide a regiment’s worth of tanks (1 Arm RP.) The 16th Bas is added to the garrison. Then twenty XX’s enter the various form pools, 4 Asturian, 4 Basque, 8 PA, 3 Anarchist and a Catalunian. By the end of the turn, the Loyalists will for the first time in the game outnumber the Insurgents (in terms of replacement value of troops, if not attack potential). Also entering the replacement pool for formation are the 6th Tank II, the 4th Art, the 15th San Art & the 17th Bas Art.
Albacete goes into production for infantry points, so the Loyalists next receive 6.5 PA, 1 Ast, 1 Bas, 1 Cat, 0.5 San, 3 An, 1 POUM and 1 Int RP. Factory production is equally large, with Bilbao producing 1 a/s, 1 res pt, 0.5 Arm and 0.5Art, and Gijon 1 res pt and 0.5 Art in the north. In the south, Barcelona, Madrid and Murcia produce 3 a/s, 3 res pts, 0.5 Arm & 1 Art total. The 12th Garabaldi Int X is replaced at Albacete, the new 6th Tank at Madrid, the 17th Bas Art at Bilbao, and the 40th Inf at Barcelona. The new Cat Mtn X, the 130th, and the new 27 CM Inf XX are each equipped. Next, using infantry units on map, the 6th Inf XX is formed at Barcelona, the 25th and 26th An XX’s in Murcia and Catalunia, the 30th Cat XX near Lerida, and the 3rd Ast XX in northernmost Santander province. Finally, the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Bas XX’s are formed in garrison. Truly a massive turn for reinforcements for the left wingers, anarchists, communists and other such riff-raff.
In the north, the NT-3 moves to Gijon, loads the 7th Ast X, unloads it at Santander and returns to Bilbao. The LtTF sails for Bilbao and replenishes, while all other naval units replenish in place.
In Cataluna, the northern part of the line moves up a bit forming a straight line from Lerida into the mtns NE, rather than bending along the Segre and into the mtns. Otherwise the section of the line running from the Pyrenees into Valencia, around to Teruel, remains fairly static. The new 30th Cat XX and the 130th Cat Mtn X are added to this section of the line. Between Teruel and Guadalajara the line is stable as well, though c/m units are used (along w/ some rail/SMPs) to move GSPs into the area needing some, circa 3105. North of Madrid things remain stable. To the NE of Madrid, the 27th CM XX is railed into sector 2512 while the Mtn XXX pulls back to Madrid, going into reserve. From hex 2612 to 3113 nothing moves, but the front from 3112 to 3612 (the Alcazar front) gets a big influx of troops. The defensive strength per hex essentially doubles. Rather than facing 3 pt hexes, the 4 main hexes have 6 or 7 pt stacks. To the south sit 3 pt stacks, while the northern flank is 5 to 4 pt stacks all the way to the mtns northwest of Madrid. Pushing further along this axis just got a lot harder. The line in Andalucia remains static, though some units are used to cartage GSPs forward. To get all the new units into the line 1 res pt was spent to temp increase rail cap, and there was a lot of cartaging and SMP’ing a/s and GSPs about as well. However, with the Mtn XXX pulled into reserve and the poor weather, it doesn’t appear that the Loyalists have any plans for attacking in the south.
Up in the NGobs, the new 3rd Ast XX enters the line, while 3 Ast X’s are pulled out, 1 from Asturias itself, and 2 from the Santander gap at 1504. Into 1504 flow new Santander X’s. Further south, the Basques get frisky. Bilbao is essentially denuded of troops (with only the intrinsic garrison and a pos AA defending) and 1702 and 1801 are stacked to the brim for an apparent spoiling attack against the Nationalists in 1802.
There doesn’t appear to be any combat planned in the south, and the obvious attack in the north isn’t within range of any a/c, so no Insurgent missions occur. In the north the Vild flies GS to 1802. There, the 11 L Art and 12GC Sec III defend against a hodge-podge of Bas Inf, Eng, Art, Mtr & Art units, along with a single PA Mtn II providing ‘leadership’ I’m sure. The attack uses 1 a/s from Bilbao, and at a high cost in Basque lives the sector eventually falls, but not without the defenders giving as good as they got (5:1 -3, partial a/s, rough terrain plus mud, 3 rolled for an EX.) The Nat Art & Sec III’s die, as do the 3rd and 4th Bas Inf X’s. A single Bas X advances, the 6th, perhaps to lure the Nationalists into an attack north of the 19xx hexrow and thereby free up the garrison?
At sea NT-3 replenishes, the BBTF in Gijon harbor preps for NGS, the LtTF moves to Guernica and does likewise, and all other naval units remain in place. On land, c/m mov’t is limited, with the 6th Tk II carrying 2 GSPs into the mtns at 3106, and 1st Arm X moving into the 2nd line at 3011. In the air, the I-16’s and Bre19 attempt to bomb the airfield at Valladolid but miss with a 3 rolled. Thus ends the turn.