S, M, M, C, C, C, C
Axis Player Turn
Hurried attempts are made to repair the rail network in Southern France. In Italy a further withdrawal is made to the line 16 miles south of Rome to shorten the line and allow the release of the HG Pz XX and attached HG AA regt to attempt to Strategically Rail through Austria to southern France. It can only get as far as Tours. In Norway, three 7-6 XXs are concentrated in Oslo with some Construction units to send to the main front. The KM heads from Kiel to escort them. The withdrawal to Russia of the 21st Pz and SS 10th F PzG XXs weakens the Franco-Spanish border defences and much rolling about on the bunker floor is done by the German commander who forgot these were due to disappear.
Allied Player Turn
Spain/France – Andalucia and Valencia are classed as “pacified” with Spanish Republican units forming up – these in turn are used to release other UK units in the Spanish interior who are sent to the front. In an effort to begin the liberation of France (still not one hex in Allied hands!) the British launch a major offensive aimed at the forts near Perpignan and around San Sebastian. To complement the fighting, harrassment is flown for a block 32 miles deep and 64 miles long behind the German front. Massive air support is flown and again the German Strategic Air force is called out to counter the Allied threat. This time the Allies are better prepared and despite heavy losses in the air for both sides, the defenders are mauled (4:1 = EX). South of this battle a LW Para XX is cadred by a UK/Canadian attack. The message is sent – Pyrenees breached! At Perpignan a French, Canadian and British army assaults the fortified defenders on the border and with several wings of fighter aircraft flying uselessly above as escorts in case of German Strat A/craft interception (which didn’t occur here!) the odds are not enough to force them back and an AS results.
Italy – US forces attack across the Trento river with heavy GS flown. The German Strat A/Craft appear to do battle but are unable to prevent the infantry defenders being bounced out of their positions in exchange for some infantry losses by the Americans. Again behind the German lines a belt of harrassment is flown some 32 miles deep, hopefully to delay the Germans in redeploying to meet the threat developing on the east coast and catch them if a sudden retreat is ordered.
France – The HG Pz XX and attached Hvy AA Regt is subjected to a swarm of Allied Fighter Bomber harrassment – 1000 planes fly harrassment for some 64 miles around the HG XX while in Normandy a Battle Group based on the 5th Para XX with Tiger tank support is likewise blocked in by RAF units. These two formations are the only likely units the Germans can use as a “Strategic reserve” in the western front without seriously weakening the Atlantic wall defences.
The above round of battles now leaves the Germans with more units in their replacement pool than the British, much to the Allied commander’s relief. Signs of stress are starting to appear in the German defences.
Exploitation Phase – in Italy a US Armoured Corp (two “heavies” 16-10 and a motorised Inf XX) swings inland past the remnants of the German coastal defenders and enters Ancona, only a single Italian 0-5 Construction blocks access to Bologna and the Po River. In France at last, the British push the San Sebastian/Bayonne defences and crosses the Adour River, effectively trapping a number of German Divisions in a pocket on the coast.