The French border remains open by rule. Supply effects are in full force, as mentioned above. For the Insurgents, things are a bit cleaner now that the Malaga pocket has been cleared, but not perfect. Two hexes on the Guadix front are still out of supply, because Gaudix and some other towns to the rear are unpacified and ungarrisoned. One hex of the line can trace to Motril through the mountains, while the northernmost hex of the line in the gap at 3204 can now trace up to Jaen, but the fact that the PA unit at Ubeda retreated away prevents the rest of the line from tracing via Jaen. Up in Asturias, all but the forward most hex of the Nationalist line, at the coast, is in regular supply now that Mieres is occupied. Needless to say, the 9thCav III raider east-northeast of Alcazar is out of supply On the Loyalist side, staying in the north, all PA units but one are isolated, though all are in supply. The single PA unit still in Estramadura is out of supply, but not isolated. Likewise, much of the Madrid front goes out of supply since an enemy zoc is on the high volume line 3111, and the low volume line is both partially enemy owned and too long for supply purposes. All units north of 28xx hexrow go OOS for the Loyalists, but since none are c/m, the impact will be minimal, except to limit rail movement and act as a distraction.
In pacification actions, the 7 units rampaging through Barcelona have nearly completed their dirty work (3rd turn of 3 begun.) Gerona, Tarrasa and Reuss are cleared of all undesirables, while the 3 GC Sec III at Tarragona and the RN An Inf X in Sabadell begin purifying their respective locations. Two units, one critical artillery, consider pacifying Albacete, and ultimately decide to leave it to some other time. The Loyalists use their 1.0 PA Inf RPs to replace the destroyed 16 GC Sec III at Madrid. A 5 is rolled for random mine damage, so the PA BB in the north remains undamaged. The damaged LC rolls a 4 in Barcelona and remains so. Perhaps surprisingly, no forts are begun in the north, which is a bit odd given the cons units and res pts are in place and available. Perhaps Sam forgot… or he plans to push his ‘oblasts’ out a bit. The Loyalist’s fly no ini phase air missions, while the Nationalists put their Mxd T at Tetuan on naval patrol. The Loyalist amphibious plan A remains in effect.
All Loyalist naval units first replenish. Then the BBTF and LtTF in the north move to 1205, just near to my MG II, and prep for NGS, as expected. Rough seas though will cut NGS from each by ½, so later the LtTF chooses not to fire it’s ineffective NGS. NT-3 moves to Gijon, loads up the 1st Ast Con X, and moves it to Bilbao. Clearly the northern Gobernito’s are all about supporting one another ;)
Starting in the southeast this time, the Loyalists surprise me a bit, by not advancing as strongly as I would have guessed. I had sort of encouraged an advance here, putting my single armor unit in a strong position, albeit with weak flanks. Even so, the Loyalists appear satisfied with their Cataluna front, by and large. Machinegun II’s take up position in the mountains on the line’s northeast section, some 30 miles from the Insurgent lines on the west bank of the Cinca. First Mtn Art III and 1st Cat Inf hold the bend in the Segre river, at sector 4426, and then the elite 2P arty and 2nd Cat Inf hold Lerida, where the two lines actually come face to face. From there, the Loyalist line runs southwest rough to the east-west mountains in the far southeast portion of the Cordillera Iberica. The center of the line is supported with artillery, but the flanks are generally single units. To this line’s rear, 3 GC sits in Tarragona and some 7 units are in Barcelona, “purifying” the populace. 15th Inf moves to Manresa to do likewise, while 8th Eng III admins to Tortosa, cartaging a res pt along for good measure. These two towns are the last not yet purified or going through purification. On the Teruel front, the PA sends 5 units forward on a “purple slime” strategy, apparently trying to slip around to the Teruel defenders’ rear. No surprises there. In the Madrid area, the line thins just a bit, looking a bit like a capital “M” thanks to the Insurgent salient at 2510 in the Cordillera Central. To the rear, 1st Mech III, with 5L Arty move to engage the raiding 9th Cav III on its west side, with the AAC Arm Car III moving in from the opposite eastern flank. In the process of moving into position, the AAC retakes Cuenca, but it sits ungarrisoned for pacification at this point. Four units join the 18th GC, survivors of the attack on Ubeda on the Valdenpenas front. Rail is used extensively to get troops into position, forming a line roughly NW-SE, from the wooded rough in 3316 down to the mountains in 3302. However, the rough at 3101 is left open, so the 5 hex line has a gap. Only one arty unit can be spared… the 6L Art III, victors at Albacete last turn, takes up position in the last hills before the clear central valleys leading to Valdepenas and beyond, astride the rails at 3415. It’s joined there by the 12th Inf from near Valencia province. These 5 units cannot hope to stop the cream of the Army of Africa, but the PA is pressed for troops on multiple fronts… I might have expected some troops to be drawn out of Cataluna, since it appears no attacks will be launched on that front. Clearly this line is just a stop gap until the big Sep I 36 reinforcement turn. In the far south, in the eastern corner of Andalucia province, some six units create a line holding the hilly gap leading to Lorca. The line runs from 3404, to 3505, thence southeast to Almeria, with Anarchists holding position forward of this line at 3207, just northwest of the port city. In the rear, another An X puts zoc’s into the eastern section of the Cordillera Penibetica, at 3602, while 16GC Sec III admins into Albacete for some pacification work next turn.
In the far north, units shift about a bit. 1st Bas Cons X holds the eastern part of the main Basque line, then single units hold the wooded rough hexes at 3032 and 3033. There, the line turns northwest, with the recently arrived 1st Ast Cons X and the Bas Ortiz mortar III holding the wooded rough at 1702. I guess the Basques are getting first dibs on fort building! The line continues northwest, then into the mountains at 1603, then to the hilly gap at 1504, and into the mountains of western Santander province. The Santandero AD mortar III guards the gap at 1504 with the PA’s 6th Eng III… clearly another location prime for fort building. A res pt is SMP’d up to Santander city, for just that purpose I suppose. The southeastern-most hex of Asturias remains occupied by the 22 GC Sec III, with the Spanish BB and Basque light TF in attendance, both prep’d for NGS. Inside the Gijon pocket, a slight stronger X (the Di, a 1-2-4) takes possession of Aviles, while the 3rd returns to the city.
No Insurgent planes are within striking distance of any hex being obviously threatened, so no DAS is flown. The PA Vildebeest floatplanes fly to 1106, where a massive assault on the MG II is made. Attack supply is unavailable thanks to Gijon being cut off, but with ample naval shells available and the GS above, the attack is nearly a foregone conclusion. Even so, the Loyalists make a go of turning into a touch and go affair… The Loyalists roll a 4 for morale, and a 1 in combat, so ultimately they are successful (2 ones would have resulted in an HX, allowing the machinegunners take some Loyalists with them (9:1 -1, no AS, 1 pt GS, 4 pts of naval units, but the LtTF cannot provide effective NGS in the rough wx, and the 3 pt BB is ½’d and rounded down as well, so just 1 pt effective NGS, 1 rolled for DH.) On the Madrid front, the 1st Mech and its supporting arty make short work of the 9th Cav raiders. (4:1 +2, AS provided, 1 pt GS from Bre19, no morale affects as no militia are present, 3 rolled for DH.) Lastly, a spoiling attack is made against the 8th Car Bdr III at 2613 (this hex weaker than originally planned due to a lack of rail cap available to get arty into the hex). The attack goes off without a hitch, but the Loyalists choose not to advance (10:1, +0, AS provided, 4 rolled for no morale effects, 6 for a DE.) The Loyalist Bre19 returns to Madrid and the Vilds return to Bilbao, their starting airbases.
Exploit is minimal. The TF’s return to port, replenish, and then prep for NGS in Gijon (BB), and San Sebastian (LtTF). The other naval units just stay in port. The AAC, which simply pinned the 9th Cav and didn’t attack, can exploit given it didn’t, so it heads back up to west Madrid, where it is protected (it’s got a 0 DS, so it needs help defending itself.) The Insurgents fly no air missions, and the ancient PA Neiuport 52’s remain in place in Madrid as well.
Leave a Reply