In a terrible bit of luck for the Insurgents, at least relative to the previous planning for this turn, the weather changes dramatically. On the first possible poor weather turn in the north, a 6 is rolled and it goes mud in weather zone D. This will definitely impact that planned op against San Sebastian. I think I can still make it work, but it’s going to cost me logistically.
In the meantime, I’ve got supply issues now in the north. Four hexes north of Madrid go U-1 black… once the ground freezes up a bit, the overland supply line length will go from 2 to 3, and I can keep all the units at U-1 or less by doing a unit two-step. Until then, I’m eventually going to have to let units be U-2 or worse, or dedicate transport to GSP mov’t. We’ll solve that problem later. 5 hexes along the Teruel front go U-1 black as well, mostly due to the zoc behind the town and the shortened overland length. Still, there are some hexes btw the Teruel and Aragon fronts that are too far due to distance. More unit two steps there in the future. Fortunately the Teruel front can be reached by rail, since that rail hit to the north is not at the junction at Calatayud. I don’t think I’ll have to give up Teruel itself. On the Loyalist side, only the northernmost unit along their side of the Teruel front is U-1. I suppose the change in weather does make it less likely that the PA offensive near Teruel will continue. They’ll have trouble reaching back to attack supply now that the overland length has dropped from 4 to 2… and the -2 mud DRM won’t help them at all.
Continuing with the initial phase activities, 7 cities are completely pacified, including Malaga and Badajoz which will go into production Dec I 36. Both also gain their intrinsic defense forces. The other 5 are Lucena, Antequera, Linares, Guadix and Mieres. Pacification begins at Almeria and Don Benito.
It’s a big turn for Nationalist reinforcements… 1st Sor XX goes to Zaragoza, while the 2nd and 3rd Soria go into the form pool. The Hue Inf XX arrives at Logrono, while 5th Req Inf X reports at Vitoria and 6th Req at Pamplona. NT-4 is formed up at Ceuta, bringing the total lift capacity to 3 RE’s, sufficient to start moving attack supply. Four more Fal Inf X’s show up, at Granada, Sevilla, Cordoba and Zaragoza, while in Morocco the 6 Xau Col Inf III arrives. In addition, 3 units of Italians, forming the vanguard of the CTV, arrive at Sevilla, including both a good arty III and some lt tankettes. Some flak is imported at Huelva and turned over to the Spanish. Lots of bullets and bombs arrive, with attack supply totaling 6 pts, arriving at 5 different ports. A res pt also arrives up at La Coruna, while 3 Art RPs arrive at Vigo… Clearly the Italian and German shipping lines are making out like bandits. The Italians turn over their Mxd A at Cagliari, which arrives as a Mxd B (both are float planes) at Huelva. Finally, the Req Redon Art III goes into the replacement pool for building.
New production is significant, amounting to 7.5 Nat, 1.5 Col, 3.5 Fal, 2.0 Req, plus the first ARP, a CTV one. Factories churn out additional attack supply beyond that imported, including 2 pts at Sevilla and one at Oviedo. Finally, Sevilla produces 0.5 Art pts worth of artillery tubes.
A lot of thought goes into figuring out what to rebuild and how to rebuild it. Key is trying to figure out if the planned assault on San Sebastian can go forward. It’s probably at its weakest point in terms of strength it has been or will be in the game, and leaving it in Loyalist hands only gives the Basques more replacement points than they should be getting (the city fell in the equivalent of the Sep II 37 turn historically). Plans will go forward, admittedly at a higher cost in terms of logistics and the number of troops that would otherwise be involved, but it is judged to be worth the risk. The 2 LE Inf III is rebuilt at Zaragoza, along with the 20 GC Sec III and the 24th Inf, all at the cost of 4.5 Nat points. The 2 Mel Col Inf III is rebuilt at Ceuta using 2 Col RPs, and the Redon Art is formed up at Sevilla using 1 Arty. Finally, the new Hue and 1st Sor Inf XX’s are equipped to their supported sides at the cost of an additional 1 Arty total. Three res pts are spent to build a permanent RE of capacity at La Coruna, bringing that yard up to 2 RE’s, and the total available to the Nationalists to 9.5. The two XX’s in the Aragon line continue building entrenchments. An 8 is rolled on the random mine damage roll, so the Nat BBTF avoids damage.
NT-1 and 2 start in the Canaries, so they load up the 24 GC Sec III and the Can Cons III, then unload them after transiting to Cadiz. They then move to Ceuta and await the rest of the phase. The NT-4 loads up the new 6 Xau Col Inf III and unloads it at Cadiz, returns to Larache and loads the 1 MT Col Inf III, and moves it to Sevilla. The two TFs replenish and then await further developments in the port. Lastly, the Italian subs return from their station off Cartagena to Ceuta, replenish, and then await the point at which they will return to Cartagenian waters (in exploit.)
In the southeastern Andalucia front, single units are the new standard. Some Fal units move into the front to replace departing Nationalist units, with emphasis on placing them in the more defensible mtn terrain. The 7th Inf admins past Gaudix from Antequerra, where it can join this front next turn, while the Eng III that just pacified Guadix fixes the rail hit to its northeast, then continues moving toward the Valdepenas front. Southwest of Valdepenas 2 pt unsupported stacks are created. The ZME Eng III joins two units just west of Valdepenas, while 2 Col Cav III’s that had cartaged attack supply join the line just northwest of this hex, creating a 4 pt and 6 pt supported stack respectively. The CTV Ricci Lt AA II admins up to the front just to the rear of the line. The Van Inf XX moves into Puertollano, abandoned by the PA last turn, while a 2 pt arty/inf stack protects it’s northwest flank. The new 2 Sev Fal Inf X (along w/ Ricci) cartage/admin on AS forward, where SMPs take over and push it a bit further east, to hex 2802, where it can be used in an attack on this front this turn. To the rear, the 2 Cord Inf X moves up to Ubeda, the Cadix Inf X moves into Martos, both for later pacification. 6 Xau, 24 GC Sec & the Can Cons III’s admin from Cadiz up to Sevilla, where they can admin/cartage additional attack supply forward next turn (I intentionally let units admin a little less forward, so they are positioned for cartaging in the following turn on a recurring basis… essentially, units arriving from Africa or rebuilt at Sevilla cartage in the current turn, while units landed at Cadiz move up to do so as well when available. Units that cartaged in the previous turn become reinforcements/replacements/
reserves for the current turn, in a continuing cycle in Andalucia.) The pos flak pt at Huelva also admins forward. Now that ZME Eng III is in the front, it can build a temp airfield and improve the air presence directly over this critical front for the Nationalist side (CR32’s basing out a temp base near Valdepenas can reach a goodly distance.) Further north of the Valdepenas front, a pair of units occupy the west bank of the Guadiana, but a one hex gap still exists btw the Valdepenas front and the Talavera fronts. The Talavera front remains static at this point, with no units shifting. However, north of Madrid, units must now begin the two-step in and out of supply range, where that process can assist. Even so, there are 2 hexes of the front line where even this back and forth cannot keep units in supply now that the weather has turned to mud. GSPs will have to be the solution, later. For now, this front remains static too. East of Madrid, the 4 Lar, unable to rail over to San Sebastian because of the rail hit to its rear, instead advances southwest into the wooded rough at 2806, with a Fal X taking over defense of the rail line proper at 2706. The Hue Inf XX admins south out of Logrono, where it can join this or the Teruel fronts eventually. 1st Soria XX admins through the gap at 2902, heading for Teruel itself, after attacks last turn weakened that area. 5th Cav moves into the mtns at 3005, to put at least a zoc on the forward PA unit at 3105. Meanwhile, 24th Inf rails in from Zaragoza and occupies 3104, and the two units that had been protecting Teruel’s eastern flank move over the mtn hexside to 3203, creating a front that can protect the town’s rear supply line. Units in the mtns east of 3303 then shift in, somewhat weakening the line leading into south eastern Aragon. This is judged safe however, since the Loyalists weren’t interested in launching attacks out of Cataluna when the weather was good; they certainly won’t be doing so now that mud has arrived. 2nd Zar Fal X joins the Aragon front line on its left flank, at the headwaters of the Cuenca, allowing the 20th Inf to shift one hex northwest, ensuring the line’s flank rests on mountains and not out in the open.
The major muscle mov’ts this turn are into San Sebastian. One res pt is spent to bring the rail cap up to 14. The 1 LE Inf III, the 1 P Art III, Redon Art III, CTV’s Ter Art III and Bab Lt Arm II, O & E MG II’s all rail into 3230, where they join the 23rd Inf that held the rail line open for them and the recently arrived 6 Req X that crossed in over the muddy terrain from Pamplona, creating a 13 AS stack. 4th Req X slides east into 3131, joined by 5th Req that had to rail in due to poor wx from Vitoria, and 2 LE Inf III and 20 GC rail in from Zaragoza. ZMO Eng III rails in from Valladolid, all joining the 2 units that had been in the hex previously, creating an 11 pt AS stack. These mov’ts open a hole in the line at 3132, but Nat high command doesn’t believe the Basques will risk troops taking the empty hex despite the good terrain, simply because the hex can be attacked without releasing the Euzkadi garrison. The rest of the northern front remains pretty static, though 2 Mtn II’s occuply an otherwise empty hex in Santander, which links the line except for the aforementioned abandoned hex in Euzkadi. The LC Fal X joins the stack at Oviedo, and the 31st III that just pacified Mieres moves to Tineo to do the same, and likewise gains a bit more control over northern Asturias via zoc. At the end of mov’t, the CR32’s fly a CAP over San Sebastian (my having failed to remember that the Vild’s departed for southern Spain when they went rail bombing last turn.
Bre19’s launch DAS missions to Ciudad Real, just north of the planned attack against 3314, while Vilds launch DAS to 3514, another potential hex at risk. Clearly the Loyalists expected a two pronged attack on either side of the Valdepenas attack, and not the one single strike at 3314, which will clear the last rough hex before Valdepenas and Alcazar, at least from the Cordoba-Linares-Valdepenas direction. The new Mxd B floatplanes and the Bre19’s on the Nat side fly GS to 3314, while the Mxd T does the same at San Sebastian, which just gets the attack over the 6:1 -3 hump.
The attack at San Sebastian goes in first, at the aforementioned 6:1 -3 (all but one RE provided AS, either via an AS pt or being interventionist, 4 rolled for PA morale for no effect, 1 rolled for a DR.) The San Sebastian stack could retreat into France, but the Basques cannot return to a province outside their operational area, and the PA high command apparently would prefer not to leave the artillery unit stuck in France for any period of time, so the units choose not to retreat across the border. This forces a retreat into the empty 3229 hex just to San Sebastian’s southeast, which is covered by Nat zoc’s, killing the stack. Sec units move into the city, and ½ of an RE of rail cap is added to the Insurgent total. On the Valdepenas front, a 6:1 -1 attack goes off perfectly (had been planned as a 5:1, but PA morale is shaken by the large number of enemy aircraft dropping bombs on them, and the single sec III is ½’d with a 2 rolled, AS provided, odds up to 6:1 -1, 6 rolled for a DE. The O Art III, 1 E Cav III and 3 Ceu Inf III advance, putting a two hex frontage on Valdepenas and opening up a 2 hex gap in the Loyalist lines. All a/c land at their originating fields.
NT-1 & 2 wait a bit at Ceuta till NT-4 arrives, and then all three load 1 AS at the port, move it to Huelva, and unload it. They then return to Ceuta and replenish. Both the BB and CA TF’s wait out the phase in the port of Ceuta. The CTV subs wait out the first four substeps, and then head out to coastal Morocco, sailing along until just shy of Algeria, then the head off to their Cartagena stations at night. There’s no reaction to this by the PA fleet in Cartagena. No ground mov’t occurs.