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1942 MAR II Soviet Turn

Finish Front; The Soviet relief column races north – will they be in time to save Murmansk?

Leningrad Front: The offensive drives further south but on a narrow one hex front and still just 16 miles short of the vital Axis rail supply line. The breach is widened west and the attack out of Narva is launched which cadres the defending German infantry division.

Mar II Sov 1942: Soviets push into the Baltics

Mar II Sov 1942: Soviets push into the Baltics

At Kalinin the front continues to dissolve and pull back but a good firm shoulder protects Moscow from any moves East by the Axis.

Moscow Front: Trapped but still dangerous the isolated Soviet pocket at Moscow West swipes at an infantry division and cadres it,

Voronezh Front: The main push continues on the NW axis with the soviets forming a defensive line against any Axis moves from Kharkov. 5 hexes are attacked between Kursk and Tula cadering an infantry division and Panzer XX.

Mar II Sov 1942: Soviet attacks along the main front as the winter offensive slowly peteres out

Mar II Sov 1942: Soviet attacks along the main front as the winter offensive slowly peteres out

Crimea and Odessa: A punitive raid from Kerch retreats the German infantry cadre. Odessa feeds on supplies and hopes the transports will get through.

Air War: The Soviets attempt to ferry supplies into Odessa with some protection from local fighter squadrons. Of the 5 strong transport fleet, 1 is patrol attacked away one eliminated by interception and two more are returned so only 2RE are ferried in to feed 13 REs of troops.

Battle Report:
Combats Diced = 10
Losses Soviets = 9,  German = 31

1942 MAR II Axis Turn

This being posted 100 years from the end of  “THE WAR TO END ALL WARS”  a poignant reminder that lessons were not learned 21 years later;


What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
Only the stuttering rifles’ rapid rattle
Can patter out their hasty orisons.
No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells;
Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs, –
The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;
And bugles calling for them from sad shires.
What candles may be held to speed them all?
Not in the hands of boys but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
The pallor of girls’ brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.

Wilfred Owen

Weather; The unseasonal Siberian winds continue to blow maintaining snow cover in A-C (D = Mud, G = Clear)

Finland & Army of Norway:  The Garman forces push East passed the rail line immediately south of Murmansk cutting it off again from the south. In the South the Fins only obtain a DR in an attack north of the lakes.  A reinforcement 6-8 mtn arrives at Petsamo.

AGN: In front of the Soviet drive south from Leningrad the second 16-10 panzer arrives but no offensive action is taken and the unit joins arriving reinforcements to bolster the defence.

The Kalinin operation continues with infantry forces arriving to reinforce the panzer spearhead. The Soviet flank to the left of the breach is hanging in thin air and two hexes are rolled up together with the stay behind fortified 4-6. On the German right (East) flank the Germans take out a lone 3-6 but otherwise hold the line. Harassment plasters both flanks to hinder any soviet moves to seal the breach.

Mar II '42 Axis Turn: Axis expands the Kalinin breach

Mar II ’42 Axis Turn: Axis expands the Kalinin breach

AGC; In the latest round of tit for tat at Moscow the Germans take the fortified city of Podolsk  thus trapping the soviet relief column and the city once again.  (Podolsk had been too week left weak to supply troops to bolster the Soviet advance column to relieve Moscow West.)

SE AAR 01 Mar II '42 Axis Turn: Axis expands the Kalinin breach. (c) Ken Newall, 2019

Mar II ’42 Axis Turn: Axis expands the Kalinin breach. (c) Ken Newall, 2019

AGS. Other than eliminating a single 3-6 holding a Soviet weak point no other attacks are made in this sector.

11th Army and the Crimea:  No action on this front but twin engine fighters are transferred south to intercept future attempts to ferry supplies into Odessa.

Air War. Other than the harassment at Kalinin the majority of Axis air activity this turn is flying DAS missions to the front. The one offensive operation is at attempt to eliminate the Soviet transport air bridge ferrying supplies to Odessa. Two airfields are bombed but disappointingly result in only 2 aborts.

Battle Report;

Combats; Automatic = 3.  Diced =5

Losses: Soviets = 37;   German = 3;

1942 MAR I Soviet Turn

In the far north the relief column opens up the road to Murmansk; in the centre the Soviet offensive grinds on aiming to inflict maximum damage and seek out mech forces where possible. On the Leningrad front more troops are poured into the attack to try and regain the initiative while the troops around Kalinin fall back but reinforcements rush in to stabilise the front while at Moscow…

Finland: The soviet relief fights its way north eliminating the German infantry cadre and although the Germans straddle the rail line immediately to the south of Murmansk the city is back in supply.

To the north of the lakes both sides lick their wounds without combat.

Leningrad Front: The Soviets strike back recapturing last turn’s lost advance cadreing a Pz and reinforce the spearhead with copious amounts of DAS. They also expand their attacks immediately west of Pskov and place an attack force ready at Narva.

At Kalinin the forces on the German left flank fall back leaving a token fortified division as rear-guard. On the Germans right forces are reinforced and troops slip past the German spearheads to temporarily put them out of supply.

Soviet Mar I 42: Soviet winter offensive slowly pushes Germans back into the Baltic

Soviet Mar I 42: Soviet winter offensive slowly pushes Germans back into the Baltic

Moscow Front: The Soviets cannot re-take the city but the trapped forces in Moscow West strike SW and link with troops fighting directly west. They cadre a 11-10 pz and link up placing Moscow West back in supply.

Voronezh Front: The main assault plough on the centre 7 attacks are lunched and while 4 result in NEs the rest inflict massive damage. An attack lead by Guards cavalry penetrate a indent in the Axis line and a left hook eliminates an entire infantry corps of 3 divisions whose cadres have no retreat. At Kursk a scratch defence of cadres and security division is eliminated while just south of Tula a 9-10 pz is cadred. All for the loss of 9 points in a HX.

Soviet Mar I 42: Battles of Attrition along the Central Front.

Soviet Mar I 42: Battles of Attrition along the Central Front.

Crimea and Odessa: Odessa receives 10 factors of supply by air and accumulated Inf Reps replace isolation losses. From Kerch a rather belated attack cadres the lone 7-6 infantry division guarding the peninsular but a Guards Cavalry is cadred in the exchange.

Air War: Nursing their losses from last turn the Soviets send some long rail bombing raids out for little real impact. DAS reinforces the defenders falling back from Kalinin. One raid is mounted against an undefended stack of Heinkels at Zaporozhe with 5 of the 6 raiders being returned by AA fire and no effective bombing factors delivered.

Battle Report
Combats automatic = 1. Diced = 11
Losses: Soviets = 9; German = 68;

1942 MAR I Axis Turn

Valentina taxied her I-16 Polikarpov fighter past the sleeker, faster more modern Migs and LaGGs that would be following behind, with their 70 MPH speed advantage they would arrive together over the target area, or at least that was the theory. She pulled back on the controls and climbed upward from the airstrip. Her aircraft had been the best in the wold in 1933 but now 9 years latter it was practically obsolete. Nevertheless her little “Ishak” had served her well so far; mainly on reconnaissance missions or hunting “lone wolf” enemy bombers, but this mission was different. The commissar had been very specific and she could still hear his words from the briefing “You are to defend Moscow West from the enemy bombers, you are to attack the bombers and you are to destroy the bombers. Everything else is of no importance, you are of no importance your life is of no importance but the State and Mother Russia must survive”.

As she gained altitude the puffs of black to the north delineated the enemy held part of the city; she nudged her little Ishak south, no need to die from a stray blast before she had a chance to kill some fascists.

Minutes later she was over the contested part of the city and felt she was staring into the gates of hell. Smashed building jutted upwards, like rotting teeth, fires burned across the city, from enemy bombing and artillery fire and above it all an inky black pall of smoke. But most striking and terrifying of all was the swarm of hundreds of black dots filling the sky, pirouetting above the ragging inferno; like a swarm of insects locked in a grim dance of death.

Starring at the scene before her she was transported back to her childhood on her father’s farm in the Caucasus’s. Papa had counted the sheep and found one missing. He had instructed the young Valentina to find it. She had searched for hours until she discovered the unfortunate creature. It had slipped down into the steep balka which formed the southern edge of papa’s farm and impaled itself on an old tree stump. She had slid down the slope to retrieve it and saw to her amazement that the blackened skin was moving. Could it be that the sheep was still alive? She prodded the skin which ruptured releasing the flies which had hatched inside the wound and had been feasting on the rotting flesh. Set free by her touch the bloated insects rose into the air and engulfed her. Flailing at them with both hands had run, screaming away.

She felt the same urge to flee now but with the commissars words still fresh in her mind she entered the fray. She spotted an enemy Heinkel, recognisable by the bulbous glass canopy, which had somehow become separated from the rest of the pack, Bearing down on her target she counted the distance, 1000m ,500m , 400m , …

Her plane exploded in a ball of flame as the 20mm cannon shells from the Messerschmitt tore into the airframe.  The flaming debris of the I-16 drifted earthwards to add to the conflagration below as the 109 banked up and away searching for its next victim.

Weather: Icy Siberian winds bring snow back to the southern steppes. A-D, Snow; G- Clear.

Finland & Army of Norway:  The 3-6 division west of the river adjacent to Murmansk is eliminated and troops are marshalled to take on the city within the next month. The 3-6 cadre from the Kandalaksha battle, its days numbered, retreats but stays on the railline.   Further south all offensive activity ceases.

AGN: All reinforcements and replacements are sent to bolster the defensive line trying to hold back the Soviet thrust aiming to sever the main Axis West-East rail line. The newly upgraded panzers are also dispatched one is held back by unrepaired rail breaks but the second arrives in time to take part in a counter attack which successfully nips off the southernmost hex of the Soviet advance. In the exploitation phase the line is reinforced and braces for the inevitable Soviet assault.

The Kalinin breakthrough continues with the forces in theatre, the promised reinforcements syphoned off to the west.  The Axis debate whether to advance due north to interdict the rail line or to strike east and secure a bridgehead over the river to the north east of Moscow. In the end they decide to strike north. Capturing the rail line will place 5 or 6 hexes of soviets to the west out of supply and put more pressure on Leningrad leaving a single line between the city and the East. Due to one of the scratch Soviet defensive stacks having no ZOC the advance slips past and secures the line with a 10-10 Pz XX.

MAR I '42 Axis Turn: Breakout North of Kalinin

MAR I ’42 Axis Turn: Breakout North of Kalinin

AGC: In another dramatic feint which catches the soviets off guard the German forces investing Moscow pincer SW from central Moscow and directly East into the SW hex. The Soviets had been expecting the attack to hit the Western Central hex which surrounded on 5 sides seemed the obvious target and has two guards with NKVD to provide a non–overunable remnant and stuffed with flack to mitigate air support. The SW hex has neither. The attack is one half a factor short of 4:1 which results in a bombing mission which turns into the bloodiest of the war to date. (See below)

MAR I '42 Axis Turn: Soviet advance checked NW of Veliki Luki

MAR I ’42 Axis Turn: Soviet advance checked NW of Veliki Luki

AGS: A completely defensive turn.

11th Army and the Crimea:  Odessa suffers some isolation losses due to the withdrawal of the Black Sea fleet and the Rumanians launch their first assault. With no German engineers or siege engine the assault peters out after a few days with no appreciable effect (NE).

SEVASTAPOL FALLS. At Sevastopol plague on the back of malnutrition rips through the Soviet defenders and outer defence works. The entire citadel is wiped out and one hex of the outer defence reduced to a single infantry regiment. The mixed Axis force eliminates the survivors and the Rumanian 1st Tank advances unopposed into the fortress.  (This really was a disastrous and freak result with the Soviets rolling 3 sixes in a row at Sevastopol)

Air War; Some deep penetrations inflict a number of rail cuts in the South but in the North are again ineffective.  In the centre the need for a half point of GS over Moscow results in the tensest and bloodiest air battle of the war to date.

The Germans send a mixed force of 5 bombers and 2 fighter bombers (110s) over the Moscow SW hex escorted by 16 Me109Es and Fs. The soviets have all their best fighters packed into the city. All Laggs and Mig3s (including a guards Mig3) with the exception of a lone I-16 rebuilt from remnants.  Total 16!! The Soviets decide to use the entire force to bypass the escorts and take on the bomber stream.

In a devastating strike 5 Soviet fighters including the Guards are eliminated and 4 aborted. 7 get through pairing off with the German bombers and fighter bombers. They move down the line of the German intruders – E, E (The 110s), R, A, R, R, MISS.  (For the loss of 2 more Soviets fighters).  So ONE bomber survives. The Germans brace themselves to receive AA fire to find their relief that the entire soviet 15 points have been placed in the western hex! The bombers deliver 1 effective point of GS. The assault succeeds (overrunning 3 more aborted aircraft on the ground) and one more hex of Moscow falls with the western central hex surrounded in a ring of steel.

Battle Report:
Auto attacks = 1, Diced  = 8
Losses: Soviet:  From Isolation = 19, Isolated combat = 2. Non-isolated = 45.
Axis:  None

1942 FEB II Soviet Turn

Правда Feb17th 1942 “Heroes of the Soviet People have today liberated the city of Kursk from the fascist invader. Our glorious cavalrymen of the 1st Guards Cavalry Corp drove the Fascists from the city and were welcomed by throngs of grateful citizens who lined the streets greeting their liberators.

Other forces driving south from Leningrad have advanced another 50 miles today and in the far north another enemy division has been annihilated and Kandalaksha is liberated!

But there is more to do and we will not rest until every jackboot is driven from the holy soil of Mother Russia, and so we urge comrades everywhere in the occupied lands to rise up against the oppressor. We will not lay down our arms or cease our struggle until all Russia is cleared of their tyranny.”

Pyotr Pospelov – editor in chief.

Finland; The belated Soviet response to the German and Finish attacks across the border start to bear fruit as the isolated 7-6 German infantry division is cadred at Kandalaksha and the flanks of the drive north are secured.

The race is now on to see if Murmansk can be liberated before the German forces can seize the city.

In the south the loss of 10th Mech places the troops north of the lakes into a defensive posture.

Feb II 42 Soviet Turn: The Soviets reestablish a connection to Murmansk

Feb II 42 Soviet Turn: The Soviets reestablish a connection to Murmansk

Leningrad Front; The drive south continues with two attacks directly south and one westward to open up the German flanks. Here light tank brigades exploit west while the main thrust reaches within 2 hexes of the main Axis arterial railroad through Veliki Luki.

East of Kalinin troops rush to cover the gaping hole left by the city’s collapse. A line is formed by stretching from both flanks and a scratch force of engineers, tank battalions and other troops en-route to the front elsewhere. Two Tank divisions pulled out of the line are rushed to the gap and take up a blocking position in front of the expected route of the Panzers.

Feb II 42 Soviet Turn: Local counterattacks by the Soviets out of Leningrad

Feb II 42 Soviet Turn: Local counterattacks by the Soviets out of Leningrad

Moscow Front; The Soviet response to the loss of the centre of Moscow takes advantage of the Germans need to thin the line to mass for that attack and they attack the easternmost German fort and cadre SS Totenkopf relieving the pressure on the north-eastern Soviet owned Moscow hex.

Voronezh Front; The main attack westward stalls with two NEs, one DR and a single successful HX but fortunately this latter is against Kursk which is recaptured.

Feb II 42 Soviet Turn: The Soviet winter offensive finally recaptures Kursk

Feb II 42 Soviet Turn: The Soviet winter offensive finally recaptures Kursk

Rostov Front & the Crimea:  The Soviets reluctantly make the decision to withdraw the battered remnants of the black sea fleet to Poti in the South Caucuses out of harm’s way of the Luftwaffe. This leaves Odessa and Sevastopol in a U4 condition and effectively heralds their imminent collapse but with just three (two damaged) capital ships left they have no choice and deem it best to maintain a minimal amphibious capability for the future.

Air War; As many soviets aircraft as possible cover the scattered defenders of the Kalinin gap with DAS. Elsewhere a few entirely ineffective raids produce no appreciable results.

Battle Report:
Diced Attacks = 10
Losses (un-isolated): Soviet = 14, German = 37, Eastern Troops = 0 (0-1-5)

1942 FEB II Axis Turn

Signal  Feb 1942 Edition

The Kremlin is ours! The desperate and heroic struggle of our troops on the Moscow front has reaped its rewards today as our banners were unfurled over the once proud capital of the Bolsheviks hordes!

Of course the soviet leaders including Joseph Stalin have long since fled like the cowardly dogs they are.

Soon all of Moscow will be ours and the dawn of the 1000 year Reich will be plain for all to see!

In other news troops of Army Group North have taken Kalinin and pushed 50 miles behind the enemy lines and in the northern arctic our hardy mountaineers have cut the only escape south for the defenders of Murmansk.

This is truly an epic day for the Reich and testament to the faith of our glorious leader, Adolph Hitler, in the German people.

Finland & Army Norway: German mountain troops concentrate and mount a risky low odds attack which retreats the soviet defenders and gains a foothold on the rail line just 30 miles south of Murmansk.

In the south the Finns also try to break the deadlock by attacking the feared 10th Soviet Mech corp. A HX results in the corps’ destruction and lays this nemesis to rest.

Axis Feb II 1942: Murmansk cut off

Axis Feb II 1942: Murmansk cut off

AGN: The attack on the battered and unsupplied defenders of Kalinin aided by the siege train from the earlier Kharkov assault smashes the defenders and the adjacent fort and rips a wide gap in the front. German armoured stacks exploit overrunning the weak defenders shielding the northern shores of the Volga lake system and push 3 hexes past the city.

AGC: The German’s again attack the central Moscow Hex but this time have marshalled an assault stack of 30 points (after terrain adjustment) The defending NKVD troops convert the DR result to an EX but the Germans extract all losses from other attackers and the Assault stack overruns the two Soviet cadres and takes the central Moscow hex in the exploitation phase.

The Axis stack surrounded just north of Tula breaks back to their own lines unaided and the breach is sealed by strong mech forces.

Axis Feb II '42: : Swasticas over the Cremlin

Axis Feb II ’42: : Swasticas over the Cremlin

AGS: The mud brings a welcome relief to the hard pressed defenders just south of Kursk and at Orel 6 infantry divisions rebuilt this turn in the city rush to bolster the defence. (This expends almost 2/3 of the German accumulated inf RPs)

11th Army & the Crimea. No action this turn as the Axis forces await rail conversion and the destruction of the Soviet Fleet before any assault can begin.

Axis Feb II 1942: Breakout of encircled Axis Armored Corps

Axis Feb II 1942: Breakout of encircled Axis Armored Corps

Air War: The Axis launch a number of offensive and defensive operations designed to isolate parts of the battlefield. The line to the north of Kalinin is cut in two places and harassment hits are placed to prevent troops moving in across land.  South of Leningrad however the results are less successful with no rail hit for a loss and an abort of two JU88As. Two swamp hexes are successfully harassed to limit Soviet infiltration.

In the centre continued efforts are made to interdict the rail network supporting the Soviet advance but the proliferation of Soviet engineers in the area means this will be a slight hindrance at most.

In the south despite earlier misgivings the Axis launch large raids against the Baltic fleet and successfully eliminate a heavy cruise and river flotilla supporting Sevastopol. At Odessa results are less successful with soviet fighters eliminating a Ju88a, aborting another and returning a third. One hit is scored against a heavy cruiser.  Total Soviet fleet supply transport capacity is now less than the combined requirements for the front line troops at Odessa and Sevastopol.

Battle Report:
Automatic attacks = 4 Diced combats = 4
Losses;  Soviet Isolated = 4, Non isolated = 71
German: 20,   Finnish = 5,

1942 FEB I Soviet Turn

The Soviet steamroller ploughs on pushing further west against stiffening German opposition. Kursk defenders hold firm and the line holds but in the centre a panzer division and infantry stack is carded and a modest breakthrough just south of  Tula surrounds more German mech.

Finland and the North. The Soviet relief column pushing north up the main line brushes ‘Nord’ aside and advances towards the 7-6 inf XX astride the rail line . To the East German/Finnish forces try to reconnect with the stranded inf division.  It is now a race between German troops at Murmansk and the Soviet relief column driving north which will determine the fate of the most northern Soviet city.

Leningrad Front: Pressure builds as more and more Soviet troops pour south from the assembly point in the city.   Guards and Naval troops swell the ranks and provide much needed winterisation effects to this secondary front. Most are not in place this turn and existing forces manage to push back on the left flank down the old boarder but stall in the swamps forming the eastern flank of the drive.

Soviet Feb I 1942: The Soviet Steamroller advances

Soviet Feb I 1942: The Soviet Steamroller advances

Moscow More political troops bolster the capital’s defence but just north Kalinin awaits  inevitable German occupation.

Voronezh Front.  The offensive south of Tula proceeds as the introduction with a German airfield immediately south of Kursk repelling a Guards Calvary assault. A Rumanian division which stood alone to screen a gap between here and the fortified line shielding Kharkov is obliterated. In total the Soviets launch 5 attacks on this front this turn.

SE AAR 01 - Soviet Feb I 1942

Soviet Feb I 1942: The Soviet Steamroller advances

Rostov Front. All quiet here and in the Crimea.

Air War Learning from their adversaries the Soviets launch a series of deep raids against the German rail net. They successfully isolate the norther line to the front and Leningrad but the line from Kursk to Kiev remains intacked.

Combat results
Auto attacks = 2, Diced = 6
Losses German isolated = 3, Non isolated = 40
Rumanian = 4.
Soviet = 13

A small gem and a big conundrum

David Tinny was so kind as to provide a short game report of a WitD/GE test game he played this spring. Since the turn reports were sparse, I made a page for each year instead of each turn or month. Sadly enough, the website refused to show me the pages, throwing a 404 like a six-year-old looking for the third pair of gloves he was sent to school in. After neither my first strategy (googling the problem and implementing various fixes I have no idea how they are supposed to work) nor my second (ignoring and hoping it fixes itself by the way of a stray update) worked, I had to sit down and rattle a couple of loose things under the hood around. Y’know, like slapping a remote. And lo behold:

If you give a post a slug only made up from numbers, WordPress throws a hissy fit.

Of course, that applies to my wordpress, with my unique combination of various third-party plugins and my customized permalink settings. Apply at your own risk.

A slug, by the way, is the part of the URL that references the actual page, i.e. if your web-page named “Testing some stuff” had the URL “” the slug for the page would be “test”). Why WordPress refuses to find the page …/ge-43-02/1940/ or …/ge-43-02/1940y/, but is perfectly happy to deliver at blazing speed a page under the adress of …/ge-43-02/y1940/, I do not know. Gremlins maybe. Bitrot most likely. Lazy programming FWIW. But frankly, I spent too much time experimenting around to find this, I am not willing to spend more time to fix it.

But, you, brave souls following me on this quick detour through the intestines of an aging wordpress installation, your prize is said game report, now available for your enjoyment here. Have a nice weekend!

P.S.: Some marketing genius did not only come up with this garbage, but obviously found enough braindamaged product owners to force some programmer to implement code into this content management system that makes sure WordPress is always spelled with a capitalized “P” in the middle, irrespective of however its written by the editor:

wordpress editor

A view from the backend editor: WordPress with a small “p”

People get paid for coming up with these kind of ideas, you know? There is a career in taking desicions away from users and proscribing them what they can write on their own website. Wordfilters next. Wouldn’t want to disturbe the monitarization of content, yo.

Yes, so far I’m happy with WordPress.


1942 FEB I Axis Turn

Franz Grubber walked up the two roughhewn steps from his command bunker, ducking instinctively under the low log roll door lintel and out onto the boarded observation platform.

Rubbing sleep from his tired eyes he gazed out over the snow laden fields to the north.

His platoon had been stationed here for over three months and they had settled into a steady routine of observation, occasional patrols and foraging in the local woods and villages to supplement their supplies.

Leningrad lay some 160 miles to the north, but high command had decided to leave it be for the moment and Franz felt the war had passed him by and that his part in Final Victory would be slight.

Something seemed odd this morning but his sleep befuddled brain took a while to realise what it was.

Normally his gaze fell upon a vast grey whiteness of fields merging into an equally grey expanse of sky stretching across the horizon but today a thin black line separated the two.

“Glasses!” he shrilled.  A crash, bang and curse behind him announced the arrival of his adjutant who stumbled forward from the darkness of the bunker his outstretched arm thrusting a pair of field glasses into his commanders waiting hand.

Wide awake now Grubber put the glasses to his eyes. The line resolved itself to a thousand or more charging Soviet troops. As he watched, temporarily frozen into inaction, larger shapes within the pack discharged a ripple of flashes.  “Mien Gott!!” He exclaimed “Get me Command, Now!”

Before his assistant could turn back toward bunker to carry out the order the tank shells crashed around them covering both in a shower of snow and dirt.

It seemed at last the war had found Franz Grubber.

Finland & Army Norway: The Soviet defenders around Murmansk with low effectiveness through lack of supplies succumb to German mountain divisions who advance another 16 east miles south of the city.

The infantry division straddling the Leningrad/Murmansk highway itself cut off comes a step nearer to relief as German units eliminate the 1-8 ski battalion which had slipped in behind it.

The Finns infiltration from Ukhta is halted by Soviet reinforcements barring the advance but further south the Finns main advance again strips a stack of units from 10th Mech’s flanks which is looking exposed but still beyond the Finns capabilities to take on in a head to head clash.

Feb I '42 Axis Turn

Feb I ’42 Axis Turn

AGN: Last turn’s cadred divisions and the line facing the Soviet advance fall back towards Veliki Luki, Fortunately for them the German forces receive a fresh Panzer division and infantry units this turn which are railed to the front in support to halt the rout.

Arriving siege guns from Kharkov allow a direct assault on Kalinin which is saved only by the NKVD and a two division cadred rump. However with no nearby replacement Political Troops or first line divisions this out of supply bulge in the line will safely be in German hands by the end of the month.

AGC: In an effort to wrong foot the Soviets the Germans launch a panzer/engineer/artillery attack against the central Moscow hex but after initial success the assault gets bogged down and after three days the operation is called off (NE).

Axis Feb I '42 Turn

Axis Feb I ’42 Turn

AGS: In front of the advancing Soviets infantry falls back to Kursk and Orel. Motorized units launch successful part winterized counter attacks against two stacks then fall back to stiffen the defensive line.

North East of Kharkov a fortified line begins to form a shield against a Soviet wheel south.

11th Army: Little ground action this turn and air raids directed against the river flotilla which the Soviets are now relying on to ferry supplies to Sevastopol fail to inflict the single hit needed to sink it. But at Odessa a hit cripples the Voroshilov.

Air War: The Luftwaffe launch a comprehensive series of air missions against the rail network behind the Soviet advance devastating the net with 6/10 successful raids.

In the north a similar operation north of Kalinin inflicts 2 hits out of 5 missions but operations south of Leningrad prove less successful with no hits being achieved.

Battle Report:

Attacks: Diced combats = 7

Soviet Non-Isolated = 57;
German; Non-isolated = 7.
Finns; Non-isolated = 1.

1942 JAN II Soviet Turn

The Winter Offensive intensifies with 6 attacks on the main front and now that the vast majority of German panzers are engaged here and in the Moscow assaults a second front is opened south of Leningrad.

On the main front west of Voronezh a Guards Cavalry unit penetrates the German line and the subsequent unmodified 3:1 attack (against Das Reich, an infantry XX and supports so ½ winterised) results in a EX eliminating the stack completely due to the Guards penetration.

Elsewhere two 1.5:1 +2 attacks are stalled by NEs and the other three attacks result in two retreats by the Axis and an HX cadering another three infantry divisions.

South of Leningrad the Soviets take advantage of the weak German line in this hitherto quiet sector and putting all 10 Special Replacements into the city and releasing the reserves already in place strike south and cadre two infantry divisions.

This much smaller right hook is in fact far more dangerous given the lack of German forces in the area and the potential for a swift advance south.

Finland; Reinforcements reach the German blocking force near Kandalaksha but cannot attack for lack of Attack Supplies.

Leningrad Front; Forces drawn from replacements, the Leningrad Defence Force and railed from the Valdai reach the front and the Soviets judge it time to attack before the Germans detect the build-up and send reinforcements to this quiet sector of single defending divisions on alternate hexes. The attack is launched on a much smaller frontage than at Voronezh and the attackers are regular un-winterised troops but both attacks result in the cadreing of the German infantry defenders.

Jan II 42 Sov Turn

Jan II 42 Sov Turn

Moscow Front: The exposed NW city hex is reinforced and the shattered defending Guard unit is pulled out of the line to rebuild. Along the line south to Tula fresh troops continue to pad out the defenders as a Tank and Mech Corps move south and attack the German line.

Voronezh Front: The main attack intensifies (as detailed in the introduction.) Meanwhile a night transfer of Transport aircraft lands into Voronezh while airborne troops are railed in under cover of darkness to conceal their presence from the Axis. Plans are drawn up for an airborne assault on Bryansk and the adjacent clear hex with a follow up transfer of para infantry into the airfield. This is scheduled for the Feb II turn dependent upon the pace of the advance and partisan reports of a continued absence of Axis units in the area.

 Jan II '42 Soviet Turn

Jan II ’42 Soviet Turn

Rostov Front; All is quiet although a few winterised regiments are released and moved north.

Crimea/Odessa: Defenders begin to fortify the line but the loss of the Komintern requires the transfer of a vessel to Odessa to maintain supply to the City.

An RP is landed at Sevastopol for fortification use and the River Flotilla/capital ships bring in supplies to the outer ring.

Air War: Expecting another assault on the NW hex of Moscow the Soviets task all medium range assault bombers to provide DAS over the hex. Another whirling battle occurs over the city as the Germans patrol and intercept the bombing stream despite the numerical superiority the soviets enjoy in fighters.  In the resulting melee 8 German fighters mostly BF 109G patrol attack 2 of the assault bombers then intercept over the target hex. They by-pass the 11 Soviet Migs, LaaGs and Yaks who only manage to Eliminate 2 fighters and Abort a third. The 8 surviving German aircraft attack the 8 strong bombing stream with devastating effectiveness; Eliminating 3 of the eight, Aborting another 3 and returning the seventh. A lone SB-2 1 factor bomber makes it over the target zone. – will it survive the flack?

One of the Soviet Voronezh Front attacks requires long range bomber support which fly un-escorted to provide AS. 5 German fighters completely fail to engage the bombers despite regular patrols on the area but do intercept over the target hex only managing to Return 2 of the enemy. The squadron commander is “re-assigned” to a Penal Battalion.

Battle Report:
Attacks: Diced combats = 8
Losses: Soviet Non-Isolated = 20;   German Non-isolated = 42.

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