INSURGENT SEP II 1938
To make most of the remaining days of fair weather, the Insurgents kept pressing their offensive in northern Cataluna. Their main thrust was just south of the Segre, to widen the breach in the second defense line and secure a broader basis for an attack on the last, the Pasionaria line. The Loyalists were still shaken from their losses at Tarrega (this time a stack of “only” 19CF), but the offensive has now run out of the open Pla d’Urgell and must contend will more rugged terrain. Heavy losses were taken on both sides (EX). The Nationalists advanced to Ponts and Igualada (13:3227). This makes the position of the Loyalist mountain salient at and south of Tremp (13:3128) even more precarious.
The Nationalist troops enjoyed massive air support while the Republican Airforce studiously kept out of the way in understandable fear of the new Me-109-Ds. Also, there is now some fuel shortage (Barcelona airbase has no supply line, and resource points must be used to keep the aircraft at full performance).
Inexplicably, the Sierra de Montsant (13:3429), though only weakly held, was not attacked. The local Nationalist commander, General Conte de Monte, a reputed alcoholic, was promptly fired and will be court-martialed (a miscalculation).
The Barcelona red-eye continued, but accurate anti-aircraft fire brought down some of the Savoia-Marchettis night bombers and spoiled the aim of the rest. Their sisters revisited Valencia’s docks, but caused no damage either.
The Fleet returned to Cartagena while the submarines resumed their tight blockade of Valencia.
LOYALIST SEP II 1938
The Loyalists had to scramble a bit to shore up their front after having suffered substantial losses. Their saving grace: the mountains (13:3226) on which they can now anchor their most threatened right flank.
In the north, the bulk of the Loyalist troops withdrew from the Tremp salient, leaving only one infantry division behind as rearguard. In the south, the Sierra de Montsant (13:3429) was evacuated to shorten the front. Reus is now in the front line.
All remained quiet at Valencia.
Neither Navy nor Airforce carried out operations.
By now, the only remaining position of the first, “iron” defense line is the mountain salient south of Tremp (13:3128). The second, intermediate defense line is breached from the Segre at Ponts to Tarrega (13:3227 and 3328). The third and last defense line, named after La Pasionaria and her “no pasaran,” is still intact but threatened.
In game terms, what the Insurgents now need is another turn of good weather (a 5 in 6 chance) and success with an attack on the last defense line, a chance of a little over 60% (calculated with incremental percentile odds). If they succeed, the game is likely to be over because a Loyalist counterattack has almost zero chance of success. If they fail and the weather turns poor in OCT II, the game can still drag on for quite some time.