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Tag: Iraq (page 2 of 3)

Jun I 41 Axis Turn (Redo)

  • For the fourth time in the special ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration, the Allied player in the Axis initial phase prior to the reinforcements segment checks for an Iraqi Coup Collapse by a dice roll using the Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table to determine results. There is a +1 Modifier for the Allied-owned dot city of Basra and there is another +1 Modifier “if a rail connection (per Rule 7A1) cannot be traced from an Axis-owned Baghdad to an Axis-owned dot city in Iraq.” Finally, there is a -1 Modifier “if an Axis air unit is in Iraq.” This tallies to a factored +1 Dice Roll Modifier on the Table, which in any dice roll result would not be enough to result in a Coup Collapse, and so the roll effort is not done.
  • For those who may want to know, in the off-map portion of the larger ME Campaign Scenario from which the special cropped ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario is derived, the Allied invasion of Vichy Levant began on the prior Jun I 41 Allied turn, as historical. The Allied forces used in the Syrian campaign done off-map in the larger ME Campaign Scenario are taken from the Allied Initial Forces found in F. Watson’s “Syria” Europa battle scenario, published in TEM#81, minus of course the forces listed there that are used in our special “Iraq Campaign” demonstration. Some minor differences in the off-map ME Campaign Scenario’s Vichy Levant campaign from Watson’s “Syria” battle scenario Jun I 41 Allied at start are that in the off-map Vichy Levant campaign both the 0-8 Marine Cmdo II ME and the Well 1C 3NB4 type air unit begin in Palestine, and the step of attack supply “at H-3 Pump Station” (21A:5025) in Watson’s battle scenario is found in the off-map ME Campaign Scenario in Palestine along with the other two steps of attack supply there on the Jun I 41 Allied turn. The Br Hurri 1 F type and the Blen 4 B type air units also in Palestine now (per Watson’s “Syria” battle scenario) are probably the survivors from Greece and Crete. The other available ME Command Br Hurri 1 F type air unit is at Tobruch (18A:4817); and the ME Command’s SAAF Hurri 1 F type, the other Br Blen 4 B type, and the Br A-22 A type air units are in the Libya-Egypt border zone, facing the Afrika Korps besieging Tobruch. The long-ranging SAAF P-40C 5F5 1/13 air unit is in Egypt, along with the second Br Glad F type air unit in the ME Command. The other Br Glad air unit is certainly at Habbaniya, in our game.

Allied dispositions:

In the Central Iraq region [all Allied forces here are in general supply]:

Rutbah (21A:5023):

1-cap permanent airstrip [Allied controlled]

22A:2725 [canal intensive secondary rail hex E of the Tigris River; NE of Baghdad]:

1 x 2-8 Inf X 21 (Ind)

22A:2726 [clear terrain hex NW of Baghdad]:

1 x 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab

22A:2826 [clear terrain road/major rail line junction hex W of Baghdad]:

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 1 As (Col) [this is the static II originally from Habbaniya]

22A:2926 [canal intensive major rail/secondary rail nexus hex SW of Baghdad]:

1 x 8* Inf XX HQ 10 (Ind):

1 x 1-8 Ind X 20 (Ind)

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 2 As (Col) [this is the static II originally from Shaibah]

Habbaniya (22A:2828):

3-cap permanent airfield

1 x 2-8 Inf X 24 (Ind)

1 x Glad 3F3 0/8 [operative]

1 x Audax 1A1 1/8 [operative]

1 x Bombay 1T2 1-2/15 [operative]

In the Southern Iraq region [all Allied forces here are in general supply]:

Basra (22A:4313) [dot city/major port]:

Allied standard Supply Terminal marker

one step of attack supply

Shaibah (22A:4314):

3-cap permanent airfield [Allied controlled]

22A:3822 [canal intensive secondary rail hex]:

1 x 2-8 Inf X 25 (Ind)

22A:3524 [canal intensive secondary rail hex]:

one step of attack supply

Axis Intervention in Iraq forces on the South Aegean Island of Rodi at the turn’s start:

Rodi (20A:2230) [point city/standard port hex]:

3-cap permanent airfield

1 x Ju 52 1T2 0/20 (LW)

4 gsp’s, generated at the standard port hex of Rodi in the Jun I 41 Axis initial phase per Rule 12C2a.

  • In the movement phase the Ju 52 T type air unit air transports two of the gsp’s at the Rodi airfield on a “1-way regular transport mission at extended range” (see Rule 23B-Extended Range) to the Mosul dot city hex (21A:3509) in Iraq, exactly 60 hexes—3X its range.

Iraqi forces and Axis/German forces in Iraq movement, end of movement phase dispositions, and commentary:

In the Central Iraq region [end of turn dispositions]:

Baghdad (22A:2825) [end of turn]:

Iraq capital marker

1 x 1-2-6 Inf XX 3 [never moved]

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 2 [never moved]

1 x 0-1-6* Inf XX 4 [never moved]

1 x Mxd 1A2 1/8 [never moved]

Baqubah (21A:4802) [reference city canal intensive secondary rail junction hex; end of turn]:

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 1

  • Becomes Black U-1 this Axis initial phase; regular moves from 21A:4704 to Baqubah, thereby recapturing this city and airbase for the Axis/Coup Iraqis.

In the Northern Iraq region [end of turn dispositions]:

Mosul (21A:3509) [dot city]:

1 x Ju 52 1T2 0/20 (LW) [began turn at Rodi airfield (20A:2230)]

2 gsp’s

  • The gsp’s on-map at Mosul at the end of the Axis turn were generated this Jun I 41 Axis initial phase at the Rodi (20A:2230) standard port hex and then air transported to Mosul in the movement phase. The two gsp’s on-map at Mosul at the start of the Axis turn that were generated in the May II 41 Axis initial phase were removed from the map at the end of the Jun I 41 Axis initial phase, per Rule 12C4 and the WW Master Sequence of Play.

1 x Mxd 2A3 1-1/16 (LW) [never moved]

  • Technically Red U-2, but in general supply via one of the gsp’s in the Mosul hex.
  • After a hard look at the Allied dispositions in the Baghdad zone, the Axis player concludes that next turn it is unlikely Allies will attempt their needed big attack at the Baghdad partial city hex. And so for this reason, and also the upcoming conversion considerations, the Mxd A type air unit is left at the remote Mosul airbase and does not now air transfer closer to Baghdad.

Allied air unit activity in Iraq late in the Axis exploitation phase:

Nasiriya (22A:3919) [reference city;end of turn]:

1 x Bombay 1T1 1-2/15 [inoperative]

  • Late in the Axis exploitation phase this air unit transfers to here from Habbaniya (22A:2828).

Commentary: The whole Axis turn is perhaps typical of a “prolonged” Iraqi campaign as depicted in this particular special WW ME Campaign Scenario demonstration situation, I think. But the Axis player is biding his time and keeping his meager core forces at the Baghdad hex, forcing the Allies to tediously maneuver and slowly consolidate for a partial city hex battle there. The Axis player thinks the best strategy now is to maneuver to delay as many turns as possible an Iraqi Coup collapse/surrender by using the resources and territory available. Both sides’ game play is very tricky and convoluted; a mistake or miscalculation only hastens the undesired wargame situation for that side. Should the Coup Iraqis and the Axis Intervention forces maneuver and combine for an attack this turn against the Ind 2-8 Ind X 21 at 22A:2725? Or should the Iraqi 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1 attempt to break out of Baghdad this turn and rum amok, forcing the Allies to waste a turn in a chase-down and kill? Well, I didn’t do either, this turn.

Jun I 41 Allied Turn (Redo)

Jun I 41 Allied Turn

Iraqi Coup force and Axis Iraq intervention force dispositions [at the turn’s start]:

In the Central Iraq region [all Coup Iraq units are in supply via overland trace to Baghdad]:

Baghdad (22A:2825):

Iraq capital marker

1 x 1-2-6 Inf XX 3

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 2

1 x 0-1-6* Inf XX 4

1 x 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1 [placed here in the Re-Do]

1 x Mxd 1A2 1/8 [operative]

21A:4704: [East of the Tigris River, 3 hexes NNE of Baghdad, clear terrain hex]:

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 1 [this unit is in general supply via an overland route to Baghdad]

In the Northern Iraq region:

Mosul (21A:3509) [dot city]:

1 x Mxd 2A3 1-1/16 (LW) [operative]

  • Technically, becomes Red U-2 this turn per Rules 23I & 12C, but is in general supply via the gsp’s in the Mosul hex.

1 x Ju 52 1T2 0/20 (LW) [operative]

  • Technically, becomes Red U-1 this turn, but is in general supply via the gsp’s in the Mosul hex.
  • At the beginning of the Allied movement phase the Axis player does a non-phasing extended range air transfer mission of the LW Ju 52 1T2 type air unit at Mosul back to the 3-cap permanent airfield at the Rodi point city/standard port hex (20A:2230) on the South Aegean island of Rodi. Note that the LW Ju 52 T type air unit at Mosul must be in general supply via the gsp’s in the Mosul hex in order to do the extended range air mission, per Rule 23I.

2 gsp’s generated in the May II 41 Axis initial phase

  • In the initial phase both Axis LW air units at Mosul are in general supply via the 2 gsp’s in the hex.

Allied movement, end of turn dispositions, and commentary:

In Iraq:

In the Central Iraq region:

Rutbah (21A:5023):

1 cap permanent airstrip [Allied controlled]

22A:2725 [canal intensive secondary rail line hex NE of Baghdad; end of turn]:

1 x 2-8 Inf X 21 (Ind) [regular moved from 22A:2927)]

22A:2726 [clear terrain hex NW of Baghdad; end of turn]:

1 x 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab [regular moved from 22A:2725]

22A:2826 [clear terrain road/major rail line junction hex W of Baghdad; end of turn]:

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 1 As (Col) [regular moves two hexes from Habbaniya]

22A:2926 [canal intensive major rail/secondary rail nexus SW of Baghdad; end of turn]:

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 2 As (Col) [regular moved from 22A:3224)]

1 x 8* Inf XX HQ 10 (Ind) [regular moves from 22A:3224]

  • On its way northwards to 2925, this unit passes through Hila (22A:3125) and Hindiya (22A:3025), capturing for the Allies these two point city/secondary rail line hexes.

1 x 1-8 Inf X 20 (Ind) [regular moves from Habbaniya]

Habbaniya (22A:2828) [end of turn]:

3-cap permanent air field

1 x 2-8 Inf X 24 (Ind)

  • This Coup Turn 5/Jun I 41 Allied turn Iraqi Coup Reaction Forces Conditional Reinforcement disembarks at Basra (22A:4313) and is air transported to the Habbaniya airfield by the Bombay air unit, which stages from Nasiriya (22A:3919).

1 x Glad 3F3 0/8 [never moved]

1 x Bombay 1T2 1-2/15 [inoperative]

  • In the movement phase air transports the Ind 2-8 Inf X 24 to here from Basra, after staging to there from Nasiriya.

1 x Audax 1A1 1/8 [never moved]

In the Southern Iraq region:

Allied Conditional Reinforcements

Iraqi Coup Reaction Forces

Coup Turn 5/Jun I 41 Allied Turn

Near East:

Arrive:

2 x 2-8 Inf X 24, 25 (Ind)

  • The Ind 2-8 Inf X 24 disembarks at Basra (22A:4313) and is air transported by the Bombay 1T2 type air unit to the Habbaniya airfield hex (22A:2828).
  • The Ind 2-8 Inf X 25 disembarks at Basra and then admin moves north 12 hexes up the secondary rail line and ends the turn at canal intensive secondary rail hex 22A:3822

22A:3822 [canal intensive secondary rail line hex]:

1 x 2-8 Inf X 25 (Ind) [admin moved here 12 hexes from Basra (22A:4313)]

22A:3524 [canal intensive secondary rail hex; end of turn]:

one step of attack supply

  • Expends 5 SMPs moving up the secondary rail line from 22A:4021.

Basra (22A:4313) [dot city/major port]:

Allied standard Supply Terminal marker

one step of attack supply [never moved]

Shaibah (22A:4314):

3-cap permanent airfield [Allied controlled]

Commentary: This turn Allied player wants very much to attack the Iraq 1-6* Inf XX 1 at 21A:4704, 3 hexes NNE of Baghdad, but feels he cannot risk the Glad F type failing to shoo off the Iraq Mxd A type air unit on its likely DAS mission, which could pose an unacceptable risk of a 2 to 1 attack. Because a scrapped attack at 4704 due to a successful Iraqi DAS mission to the hex could lead to the flanking Ind 2-8 Inf X 20 being necessarily stuck at adjacent hex 21A:4604 (where it would move to participate in the attack), the somewhat less risky and undesirable end of turn Allied dispositions in the Baghdad zone done here is settled for instead. Indeed, it would be good to also have the Well 1C 4NB3 air unit, now involved in the first turn of the Syrian campaign region, base at the reference city of Ramadi (22A:2830) in the Combat Phase for a possible DAS air mission in the Baghdad zone next turn, but Ramadi is too far away from the western Syrian hex that the Well 1C NB type air unit is giving GS to this turn. It doesn’t even base at the Rutbah 1-cap permanent airstrip (21A:5023), and stays in Palestine, just in case its 2 tac factors are needed for DAS in the Syrian campaign.

Tension mounts for the Allied player to soon find the end to the Iraq campaign, which is the prerequisite for the invasion of Iran needed to secure the Lend Lease route to Russia. Note that the Iraqi campaign and the subsequent Allied invasion of Iran has some relevance even in reference to the presently discussed Advanced GE concept of a joint German-Japanese war with the USSR in the summer of 1941, which plugs up the Vladivostok route for Lend Lease. Because the Allied player really has no other choice, I believe, he opts to be cool and patient in the Iraqi campaign depicted in the special cropped WW ME Scenario demonstration. He counts on the Iraqi and Axis Intervention forces next turn playing prudent too, rather than “going for broke.”

Aspects & Re-Do

The special “Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration has been great fun for me at the wargame table. Even though it superficially might have the appeal of a small highway chicken stand compared to the bigger and grander Europa campaign games, the WW design product makes the Iraq campaign in its broader WW ME Campaign Scenario aspect a fascinating and convoluted labyrinth of wargame play. I’ve spent hours analyzing the Allied forces means of approach to the Iraqi Coup redoubt at Baghdad and also the prospects of and possibilities for Axis Intervention into the Iraq campaign.

The current WW ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration game play has evolved from a Europa “historical outcome” campaign to what might be defined as a typical “prolonged” Iraqi campaign. In WW Rules play, this probably occurs when the Allies fail to successfully roll a Coup Collapse on the Axis initial phase they have the +5 Modifier “if this is the first turn (only) that a supported allied unit is adjacent to an Iraqi-owned Baghdad,” which was apparently successfully accomplished “historically” in the May II 41 Axis initial phase. In a “prolonged” Iraqi campaign a big battle for the Iraqi partial city hex of Baghdad (22A:2825) apparently becomes the critical wargame event striven for by the Allies to hasten the end of the campaign, many times finished in the ME Campaign Scenario play by using the Optional Rule Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table.

In the broader WW ME Campaign Scenario context, in addition to Syrian campaign considerations, this Allied anxiety for “haste” is precipitated by Rule 38I-Iran. Here it says “for game purposes, the Allied player is required to invade Iran. He may not invade (enter) Iran before Aug I 41. He loses 3 VPs during each Allied initial initial phase from Oct I 41 on if he has not invaded Iran. He loses 1 VP during each Allied initial phase if he has not invaded Iran.” Finally, in relation to Axis game play possibilities on the Europa Near East map groups, the rule also says “…Axis forces may enter and operate in Iran without violating Iranian neutrality.” Allied forces may only invade Iran. Although technically Optional Rule 38J6-Axis Intervention in Iraq doesn’t allow any Axis intervention forces to enter Iran, it probably could/should be modified to allow for Axis Intervention forces to enter Iran in the very narrow and limited time range in between the Allied ownership of the Baghdad hex and an Iraqi Coup Collapse occurring via the dice rolls done using the Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table in the Axis initial phases.  Of course there’s no way for the Axis to supply them in Iran, but their presence there might help delay Iranian Surrender.

The use of the Ger 2-6 Inf III SV 288 is another issue in the Iraq campaign in Europa, and as an Axis player in a WW ME Campaign Scenario I’ve never wanted to use it. But that’s only because it’s a valuable German unit in the Western Desert map group when it comes in the Med/NA Command on the Oct I 41 turn as a mot inf III. But maybe the Axis player could get it back if he spends a Med/NA Command Ger inf RP prior to receiving it on the Oct I 41 turn, assuming its certain demise if it’s ever air transported into Coup Iraq via a Rules-necessary stop-over in Vichy Levant, assuming only one LW Ju 52 T type air unit is available. However, as I understand it, many of the soldiers of the Ger SV 288 inf III were volunteers from the Bosnia region of Yugoslavia (eg., European Muslims) does apparently make it a wise choice for an Axis intervention to Iraq ground force. An alternative unit I used to toy with decades ago in WD games using the NE module was the Italian para-inf III Tonini, composed as I understand it of “Libyans,” but they may have been Italian colonist Libyans living in the Cyrenaica region rather than the local Islamic natives. So I’m still not sure if Tonini is a suitable alternative to SV 288.  At least Tonini had the honorific “para-infantry” designation so characteristic of the elite Italian fascists and Nazi Germans of the war era called upon to perform these one-way destinations to certain death or captivity.

Remaining is the immediate issue at hand of what to do about the rules error done on the WW ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration’s Jun I 41 Allied turn game report posted at the EA on March 29 (#63414). This involved Rule 9A-[Attack] Procedure in a combat involving the Iraq 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1 at swamp hex 22A:2822, three hexes E of Baghdad, with the Br c/m X Hab. There was also a subsequent June I 41 Axis turn game report posted later that same Sat. evening (#63415). Because the special Iraq Campaign Scenario demonstration is being done to hopefully popularize the WW ME Scenario Campaign game with the EA audience, and because it’s also being done both “for fun” at the EA and for Europa wargame study and analysis by those interested EA grognards (if any), I’ve decided for a wargame “re-do” of the Jun I 41 game turn. The re-do will commence with a “new” or “revised” Jun I 41 Allied turn ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration game report and will continue on from there. The only change in the original at-start force dispositions will be the location of the Iraq 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1, which will be placed with the Coup Iraq stack at the Baghdad partial city hex at 22A:2825 instead of its original end of turn placement (done on the May II 41 Axis turn exploitation phase) by itself at swamp hex 22A:2822. Quite a bit of thought was given to placing it at its originally planned spot of 21A:4402, before the last minute change to swamp hex 22A:2822, which led to its attack next turn by the Br 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab. But not this time.

Jun I 41 Allied Turn

Iraqi Coup force and Axis Iraq intervention force dispositions [at the turn’s start]:

In the Central Iraq region [all Coup Iraq units are in supply via overland trace to Baghdad]:

Baghdad (22A:2825):

Iraq capital marker

1 x 1-2-6 Inf XX 3

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 2

1 x 0-1-6* Inf XX 4

1 x Mxd 1A2 1/8

21A:4704: [East of the Tigris River, 3 hexes NNE of Baghdad, clear terrain hex]:

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 1

22A:2822 [swamp hex, 3 hexes E of Baghdad]:

1 x 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1

In the Northern Iraq region:

Mosul (21A:3509) [dot city]:

1 x Mxd 2A3 1-1/16 (LW)

  • Technically, becomes Red U-2 this turn per Rules 23I & 12C, but is in general supply via the gsp’s in the Mosul hex.

1 x Ju 52 1T2 0/20 (LW)

  • At the beginning of the Allied movement phase the Axis player announces his LW Ju 52 1T2 type air unit at Mosul is conducting a non-phasing extended range air transfer mission back to the 3-cap permanent airfield at the Rodi point city/standard port hex (20A:2230) on the Aegean Sea zone island of Rodi. Note that the LW Ju 52 T type air unit at Mosul must be in general supply via the gsp’s in the Mosul hex in order to do the extended range air mission, per Rule 23I.

2 gsp’s generated in the May II 41 Axis initial phase

  • In the initial phase the two Axis LW air units are in general supply via the 2 gsp’s at Mosul.

Allied movement, end of turn dispositions, and commentary:

In Iraq:

In the Central Iraq region:

  • In the initial phase the Br Glad 3F3 type air unit based at the Habbaniya (22A:2828) airfield flies the CAP mission over the Iraqi 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1 unit at swamp hex 22A:2822, 6 hexes away.

22A:2725 [canal intensive secondary rail hex NE of Baghdad; at the turn’s start]:

1 x 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab

  • This unit becomes Red U-1 in the initial phase.
  • At the end of the movement phase this unit spends 5 MPs regular moving to clear terrain hex 22A:2823, W of and adjacent to the Iraqi 1-0-8 Lt Arm X in swamp hex 22A:2822.
  • In the combat phase the Iraqi Mxd 2A3 type air unit based at Baghdad flies the DAS mission to hex 22A:2822, three hexes away. Here it is intercepted by the Glad 3F3 type air unit flying the CAP mission over the hex. Following the air op sequence in Rule 16D, air combat is resolved between the two units. The Glad air unit rolls a 4 on the +1 column (no modifiers) for a Kill; theIraqi Mxd air unit rolls a 7:-.
  • Seeing that the Iraqi air unit flying the DAS mission is eliminated in air combat, the Allied phasing player need not initiate a GS mission air op, done subsequent to the non-phasing DAS mission air op. Consequently, the Br 2-1-10* Mot Inf X is able to attack the 0 strength Iraqiground unit with a quartered attack factor of .5, the quartering due to being U-1 (Rule12E2) and not in attack supply. Per Rule 9A-[Combat] Procedure, at 5) it says “If…the total defense strength is 0, the combat immediately ends with an automatic DE result.” But the Allied c/m unit does not move into the swamp hex after combat.
  • In the exploitation phase the 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab spends 5 MPs exploiting to canal intensive hex 22A:2925, SE of Baghdad and still E of the Tigris River.

22A:2926 [canal intensive major rail/secondary rail nexus SW of Baghdad; end of turn]:

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 2As (Col) [regular moves north 3 hexes from 22A:3234]

22A:2826 [clear terrain road hex W of Baghdad; end of turn]:

1 x 8* Inf XX HQ 10 (Ind) [regular moves from 22A:3234]

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 1 As (Col) [regular moves two hexes from Habbaniya (22A:2828)]

22A:2726 [clear terrain hex NW of Baghdad; end of turn]:

1 x 1-8 Inf X 20 (Ind) [regular moves from Habbaniya]

22A:2725 [canal intensive secondary rail line hex NE of Baghdad; end of turn]:

1 x 2-8 Inf X 21 (Ind) [regular moved from 22A:2927]

Habbaniya (22A:2828) [end of turn]:

3-cap permanent air field

1 x 2-8 Inf X 24 (Ind)

  • This Coup Turn 5/Jun I 41 Allied turn Iraqi Coup Reaction Forces Conditional Reinforcement disembarks at Basra (22A:4313) and is air transported to the Habaniya airfield by the Bombay air unit, which stages from Nasiriya (22A:3919).

1 x Glad 3F3 0/8 [inoperative]

  • This air unit returns to base here after flying the CAP mission and doing air combat over the 22A:2822 swamp hex.

1 x Bombay 1T2 1-2/15 [inoperative]

  • In the movement phase air transports the Ind 2-8 Inf X 24 to here from Basra, after staging to there from Nasiriya (22A:3919).

1 x Audax 1A1 1/8 [never moved]

Rutbah (21A:5023):

1 cap permanent airstrip [Allied controlled]

In the Southern Iraq region:

Allied Conditional Reinforcements

Iraqi Coup Reaction Forces

Coup Turn 5/Jun I 41 Allied Turn

Near East:

Arrive:

2 x 2-8 Inf X 24, 25 (Ind)

  • The Ind 2-8 Inf X 24 disembarks at Basra (22A:4313) and is air transported by the Bombay 1T2 type air unit to the Habbaniya airfield hex (22A:2828).
  • The Ind 2-8 Inf X 25 disembarks at Basra and then admin moves north 12 hexes up the secondary rail line and ends the turn at canal intensive secondary rail hex 22A:3822

22A:3524 [canal intensive secondary rail hex; end of turn]:

one step of attack supply

  • Expends 5 SMPs moving up the secondary rail line from 22A:4021.

Basra (22A:4313) [dot city/major port]:

Allied standard Supply Terminal marker

one step of attack supply [never moved]

Shaibah (22A:4314):

3-cap permanent airfield [Allied controlled]

At the end of the turn, on the WitD Neutrals Game Chart:

Iraqi Replacement Pool:

1 x 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1

Eliminated Air Units:

1 x Mxd 1A2 1/8

Commentary: The Allied player is relieved that the Iraqi 1-0-10 Lt Arm X 1 has finally been eliminated. In his May II 41 player turn the Axis player nearly placed the Iraqi c/m unit at 21A:4402, and now wonders if he should have kept to that move, and not done the last minute change to swamp hex 22A:2822. Almost frantically, the Allied player starts encircling the defiant Coup Iraq capital of Baghdad, seeking to find an end to the Iraqi campaign.

Jun I 41 Axis Turn

  • For the fourth time in the special ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration, the Allied player in the Axis initial phase prior to the reinforcements segment checks for an Iraqi Coup Collapse by a dice roll using the Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table to determine results. There is a +1 Modifier for the Allied-owned dot city of Basra and there is another +1 Modifier “if a rail connection (per Rule 7A1) cannot be traced from an Axis-owned Baghdad to an Axis-owned dot city in Iraq.” Finally, there is a -1 Modifier “if an Axis air unit is in Iraq.” This tallies to a factored +1 Dice Roll Modifier on the Table, which in any dice roll outcome is not enough to result in a Coup Collapse, and so the roll effort is not done.

Allied dispositions:

In the Central Iraq region [all Allied forces here are in general supply]:

Rutbah (21A:5023):

1-cap permanent airstrip [Allied controlled]

Habbaniya (22A:2828):

3-cap permanent airfield

1 x 2-8 Inf X 24 (Ind)

1 x Glad 3F3 0/8 [operative]

1 x Audax 1A1 1/8 [operative]

1 x Bombay 1T2 1-2/15 [operative]

22A:2725 [canal intensive secondary rail hex NE of Baghdad]:

1 x 2-8 Inf X 21 (Ind)

22A:2726 [clear terrain hex NW of Baghdad]:

1 x 1-8 Inf X 20 (Ind)

22A:2826 [clear terrain road hex W of Baghdad]:

1 x 8* Inf XX HQ 10 (Ind)

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 1 As (Col) [this is the static II originally from Habbaniya]

22A:2926 [canal intensive major rail/secondary rail nexus hex SW of Baghdad]:

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 2 As (Col) [this is the static II originally from Shaibah]

22A:2925 [canal intensive hex SE of Baghdad, E of the Tigris River]:

1 x 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab

In the Southern Iraq region [all Allied forces here are in general supply]:

Basra (22A:4313) [dot city/major port]:

Allied standard Supply Terminal marker

one step of attack supply

Shaibah (22A:4314:

3-cap permanent airfield [Allied controlled]

22A:3822 [canal intensive secondary rail hex]:

1 x 2-8 Inf X 25 (Ind)

22A:3524) [canal intensive secondary rail hex]:

one step of attack supply

Axis Intervention in Iraq forces on the South Aegean Island of Rodi at the turn’s start:

Rodi (20A:2230) [point city/standard port hex]:

3-cap permanent airfield

1 x Ju 52 1T2 0/20

4 gsp’s, generated at the standard port hex of Rodi in the Jun I 41 Axis initial phase per Rule 12C2a.

  • In the movement phase the Ju 52 T type air unit air transports two of the gsp’s at the Rodi airfield on an extended range mission (Rule 23C-Extended Range) to the Mosul dot city hex (21A:3509) in Iraq, exactly 60 hexes—3X its range.

Iraqi forces and Axis/German forces in Iraq movement, end of movement phase dispositions, and commentary:

  • In the Reinforcements/Replacements section of the of the initial phase Axis player spends the 1 ARP stored in the Baghdad hex to move the Iraq Mxd 1A2 type air unit from the Eliminated Air Units box to the Aborted Air Units box in the Iraq Replacement Pool.

In the Central Iraq region [end of turn dispositions]:

Baghdad (22A:2825) [end of turn]:

Iraq capital marker

1 x 1-2-6 Inf XX 3 [never moved]

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 2 [never moved]

1 x 0-1-6* Inf XX 4 [never moved]

Baqubah (21A:4802) [reference city canal intensive secondary rail junction hex; end of turn]:

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 1

  • Still Red U-1; regular moved from 21A:4704, thereby recapturing this city for the Axis/CoupIraqis .

1 x Mxd 2A3 1-1/16 (LW)

  • Still Red-2; air transfers to here from Mosul (21A:3509) in anticipation of the battle for Baghdad.

In the Northern Iraq region [end of turn dispositions]:

Mosul (21A:3509) [dot city]:

1 x Ju 52 1T2 0/20 (LW)

2 gsp’s

  • The gsp’s on-map at Mosul at the end of the Axis turn were generated this Jun I 41 Axis initial phase at the Rodi (20A:2230) standard port hex and then air transported to Mosul in the movement phase. The two gsp’s on-map at Mosul at the start of the Axis turn that were generated in the May II 41 Axis initial phase were removed from the map at the end of the Jun I 41 Axis initial phase, per Rule 12C4 and the WW Master Sequence of Play.

Allied air unit activity in Iraq sometime in the Axis turn:

Rutbah (21A:5023):

1-cap permanent airstrip

1 x Well 1C 4NB3 2-9/28 [inoperative]

  • Because of the problem of the likely Allied attack on the Baghdad hex in the upcoming Jun II 41 Allied turn, the Allied player makes certain that the long ranging Well 1C 4NB3 type air unit bases close enough to the Baghdad zone to add its 2 tac factors to the GS, if necessary. This will be a tough call, as it is assumed that it ought to be used for GS in the Syrian campaign that same turn.

Iraq Replacement Pool:

1 x 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1

Aborted Air Units:

1 x Mxd 1A2 1/8

Commentary: This whole Axis turn move is perhaps typical of the end game period of the Iraqi campaignas depicted in this particular WW ME Campaign Scenario situation, I think.

Scenario Interlude

Now might be a good time to tie up some loose ends regarding the present state of the WW ME/“IraqCampaign” Scenario demonstration, which has ended its May II 41 game turn, with possibly a bonus extended play period due to an assumed No Collapse die roll per the Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table done in the May II 41 Axis initial phase. First, I must admit an error in computing the Dice Roll Modifiers used. I still believe it’s quite correct that the Allied player (who does this dice roll in the Axis initial phase) gets a +5 for this being the “first turn (only) that a supported Allied unit ” [eg., the 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab unit, then at 22A:2725, NE of Baghdad] “is adjacent to an Iraqi-owned Baghdad.” In addition, in our “IraqiCampaign” Scenario demonstration case, the Allied player also correctly gets a +1 for the Allied-owned dot city of Basra; and finally he gets an additional +1 “if a rail connection (per Rule 7A1) cannot be traced from an Axis-owned Baghdad to an Axis-owned dot city in Iraq.” However, in the rush of events I neglected to add a quite important additional Dice Roll Modifier, specifically a -1 “if an Axis air unit is inIraq.” And at the start of the May II 41 Axis initial phase there indeed was the Ger LW Mxd 2A3 type air unit based at Mosul (21A:3509), in Iraq. This additional Dice Roll Modifier would have amounted to a revised, or corrected +6 Dice Roll Modifier instead of the +7 Modifier stated in the earlier May II 41 Axis game report. But the results would have been the same: No Collapse, assuming a dice roll of 2.

However, in Europa wargaming of the Iraq campaign on the WitD Near East map group, as done using WW Rules, a No Collapse result in the Axis initial phase that the one time (only) big +5 dice roll modifier applies means that henceforth in the game the Iraqi campaign acquires a much more grim and enduring character, with perhaps no Iraqi collapse/surrender for quite awhile per Rule 38J5. Indeed, given the -1 Dice Roll Modifier stipulated “if an Axis air unit is in Iraq,” and assuming the usual two +1’s for the Allied-owned dot city of Basra and no rail connection traceable (per Rule 7A1) between an Iraqi-owned Baghdad and any other Iraqi-owned dot city, this means that until Baghdad is Allied-owned (fetching then a +6 Modifier) the Allied player need not waste time rolling on the Table, as the best he could get before capturing Baghdad is a 13: No Collapse.

Even the turn after Baghdad is Allied-owned, the Allied player might then be rolling with a +7 Modifier, thus still needing a dice roll of at least 7 to clinch an Iraqi Coup Collapse, thereby acquiring the desired Allied control of all Iraqi hexes not occupied by Axis forces or in uncontested Axis ZOCs. This acquisition of Iraqi hex ownership is needed to put a secure end to the Iraq campaign in the summer of 1941. So theIraqi campaign in a WW ME Campaign Scenario could become a long fight for the Allied player, including the necessary hex takeover of all important Iraqi city hexes and transportation lines. This is along with conducting a simultaneous Vichy Levant campaign and maybe dealing with Axis Intervention in Iraq per Rule 38J6, not to even mention wargaming against Rommel’s Axis Afrika Korps in the Western Desert, which likely menaces both a besieged Tobruch and the Allied Western Desert covering force in the Egyptian-Libyan border zone. Whew! Note that the Axis Conditional Reinforcement arrival of the LW Mxd 2A3 type air unit on the May 1 turn is probably an “historical,” or “basic” Grand Europa event. This includes a possible subsequent ‘historical” Iraqi Coup Collapse, per Optional Rule 38J5, and a final AxisIraq intervention “historical” Withdrawal, per Optional Rule 38J6, in WW Europa play each possibly occurring in sequence in the May II 41 Axis initial phase.

Back on March 18, in EA post #63310, I mentioned an article that said that “four trainloads of material [coming from Vichy France] crossed the border [the Vichy Levant/Iraq border] before the destruction of the bridge near Tel Kotchek put an end to rail traffic [of Axis/Vichy Levant war material going to aid CoupIraq]. Tel Kotchek is in Syria right at the border; this is certainly at 21A:3213, on the major rail line going from Istanbul to Baghdad, with two parts of this major rail line going through Syrian territory. Per Playfair, in his The Mediterranean and the Middle East, this appears to be a ground sabotage bombing.

Here are a couple of excerpts from I.S.O. Playfair’s The Mediterranean and Middle East, V. 2, from Chapter 9: The Revolt in Iraq, which might be of interest to some EA members:

“A [Nazi German] plan was made to set up a Fliegerfuhrer Irak, Colonel Werner Junck, with an initial force of fourteen Me. 110 fighters and seven He. 111 bombers from Fliegerkorps VIII in Greece, and various aircraft for transport purposes. Their main base would be Rhodes, whither a supply ship sailed from Athens on 13th May. Their first operation was to be against Habbaniya, after which the units would work from Baghdad. A light anti-aircraft battery was to be flown in as soon as possible.” (pp. 195-196).

After overcoming some initial Vichy resistance, “12 [Italian] CR.42 fighters arrived at Mosul on 27th May,” under German command. (p. 196).

By the end of May things were bad for the German LW contingent in Iraq. “Junck had only two Heinkels, four bombs,and not a single fighter serviceable. On the 29th things were worse. … “[S]ome additional aircraft destined for Mosul were countermanded owing to the lack of fuel in Iraq. The German losses in aircraft were in fact fourteen Me 110s and five He. 111S; the Italians lost three CR 42s.” (p. 196).

Finally, TWH makes a good point in his March 19th #63317 posting about the advantages for Hitler of the Vichy French rump state and Empire after the fall of France. This point regarding the Nazi German peace made with the French and some other points regarding the Vichy French in Africa from June 1940 to June 1941 probably deserves some more EA attention and discussion; maybe later.

May II 41 Allied Turn

Iraqi Coup force and Axis Iraq intervention force dispositions:

In the Central Iraq region:

Baghdad (22A:2825):

Iraq capital marker

1 x 1-2-6 Inf XX 3

1 x 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1

1 x Mxd 1A2 1/8 [operative]

22A:2926 [canal intensive major rail/secondary rail junction hex, SW of Baghdad]:

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 2

22A:2826 [clear terrain major rail/road junction hex, W of Baghdad]:

1 x 0-1-6* Inf XX 4

22A:2726 [clear terrain major rail hex, NW of Baghdad]:

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 1

In the Northern Iraq region:

Mosul (21A:3509) [dot city major rail line hex]:

1 x Mxd 2A3 1-1/16 (LW) [operative]

  • This unit becomes Red U-1 in the initial phase.

Allied movement, end of turn dispositions, and commentary:

In Iraq:

In the Central Iraq region:

22A:2829 [the swamp road hex W of Habbaniya (22A:2828), at the start of the turn]:

1 x 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab

  • At the end of the movement phase this unit spends 10 MPs regular moving to clear terrain hex 21A:4704, east of the Tigris River and 3 hexes NNE of Baghdad.
  • By the end of the exploitation phase this unit spends 6 MPs regular moving eventually to canal intensive secondary rail hex 22A:2725, NE of Baghdad. On the way it enters and exits the nearby Baqubah hex (21A:4802), capturing for the Allies this reference city and secondary rail junction hex.

Habbaniya (22A:2828) [end of turn dispositions]:

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 2 A (Col) [never moved]

1 x 1-8 Inf X 20 (Ind) [air transported to Habbaniya from by the Bombay T Type unit]

  • The Ind 1-8 Inf X 20 begins the turn at Diwaniya (22A:3623). From there it regular moves 7 hexes south along secondary rail lines to reference city Nasiriya (22A:3919), where it is then air transported by the Bombay T type air unit (staging from Habbaniya) back to the Habbaniya airfield.

1 x Bombay 1T2 1-2/25 [inoperative; remains here after air transporting the Ind 1-8 Inf X 20]

1 x Glad 3F3 0/8 [never moved]

1 x Audax 1A1 1/8 [never moved]

22A:2927 [canal intensive hex, end of turn disposition]:

1 x 2-8 Inf X 21 (Ind) [regular moves here from nearby Habbaniya (22A:2828)]

 

Commentary: What’s happening in the Central Iraq region is that the Allied player is maneuvering his units for the most optional Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table dice roll in the upcoming May II 41 Axis initial phase, hoping then for a timely “historical” Iraqi collapse and surrender. This is why the Br Hab c/m X and the Ind Inf X 20 units are where they’re at. The only other option would appear to be attacking Iraqi ground units in the Baghdad zone, but this turn the available Allied ground units in the Central Iraq region are mostly unsupported and there are no available nearby steps of attack supply. One tempting target is the Iraqi 0-1-6* inf XX at clear terrain road hex 22A:2826, W of Baghdad. An attack with the Br Hab motorized unit (supported) plus GS has the makings of a straight up 6 to 1, but if the Iraqi Mxd A type on the DAS mission survives the Glad F type’s interception, the battle die roll would be a 2 to 1. Too risky this turn, I think, prior to the critical Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse die roll next Axis initial phase. And the Iraqis should risk their air unit in this case. If the Iraqi Coup Collapse dice roll doesn’t finish the Iraqi campaign for the Allies, then Plan B would be to start attacking in the region, with the capture of the Baghdad hex being the prime objective. And that’s where this turn’s movement in the Southern Iraq region comes in.

In the Southern Iraq region [end of turn dispositions]:

Basra (22A:4313) [end of turn]:

Allied standard Supply Terminal marker

one step of attack supply [never moved]

Shaibah (22A:4314):

3-cap permanent airfield [Allied controlled]

22A:4021 [clear terrain secondary rail line hex; end of turn]:

one step of attack supply [in exploitation phase spends 5 SMPs moving here from 22A:4217]

22A:3224 [swamp secondary rail line hex; end of turn dispositions]:

1 x 8* Inf XX HQ 10 (Ind) [regular moved up the secondary rail line from Diwaniya (22A:3623)]

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 2 As (Col) [railed up secondary rail line from Basra (22A:4313) to Diwaniya, then admin moves 4 hexes up the line to here]

 

Commentary: The Allied player is attempting to get the Ind 8th Inf XX HQ unit as close to the Baghdad zone as he can, in case the Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table die roll in the upcoming May II 41 Axis initial phase doesn’t clinch Iraqi Coup collapse and surrender. Attacking might then become necessary to finish the Iraq campaign. The step of attack supply is being brought up to the Baghdad zone from Basra as quickly as the 5 SMPs per turn in Iraq will allow.

May II 41 Axis Turn

  • For the third time in the special ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration, the Allied player checks for an Iraqi Coup Collapse by a dice roll done using the Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table to determine results. However, now things have changed and this time the Allies have some substantial Dice Roll Modifiers to maybe hasten the Iraqi Coup Collapse/Surrender per Optional Rule 38J5. As I tally it, per the Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table Modifiers, there’s a big +5 since this is the “first turn (only) that a supported unit is adjacent to an Iraqi-owned Baghdad; there’s also a +1 for the Allied-owned “dot city” of Basra; and there’s a final +1 “if a rail connection (per Rule 7A1) cannot be traced from an Axis-owned Baghdad to an Axis-owned dot city in Iraq.” I assume “Axis-owned” = “Iraqi-owned.” This means a big +7 die roll modifier going towards the 14 result needed for an Iraqi Coup Collapse. I believe this is how the original WW designers “gamed” the “historical” Iraqi coup collapse in their wargame. In any event, the die roll done here is 12: Iraqi Coup Collapse!
  • But wait! This was originally intended to be the last game turn anyway in the special ME/“IraqCampaign” Scenario demonstration. Accordingly, we will go through this last Axis player turn “as if” the dice roll were a 2: No Collapse, for the Europa wargame experience.

Allied dispositions [at the turn’s start]:

In the Central Iraq region:

Rutbah (21A:5023):

3-cap permanent airfield [Allied controlled]

Habbaniya (22A:2828):

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 1 As (Col)

1 x 1-6 Inf X 20 (Ind)

1 x Glad 3F3 0/8 [operative]

1 x Audax 1A1 1/8 [operative]

1 x Bombay 1T2 1-2/25 [operative]

22A:2927 [canal intensive hex; 2 hexes WSW of Baghdad, 2 hexes ESE of Habbaniya]:

1 x 2-8 Inf X 21 (Ind)

22A:2725 [canal intensive secondary rail line; NE of Baghdad]:

1 x 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab

Note: All Allied forces in the Central Iraq region are in general supply.

In the Southern Iraq region:

Basra (22A4313):

Allied standard Supply Terminal marker

one step of attack supply

Shaibah (22A:4314):

3-cap permanent airfield [Allied controlled]

22A:4021 [clear terrain secondary rail line hex]:

one step of attack supply

22A:3224 [swamp secondary rail line hex]:

1 x 8* Inf XX HQ 10 (Ind)

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 2 As (Col)

Note: All Allied forces in the Southern Iraq region are in general supply.

Axis Intervention in Iraq [Optional Rule 39E4]

Axis Conditional Reinforcements

Coup Turn 4/May II 41 Axis Turn

German:

Med/NA [or Southeast (SE)]:

Place at any airbase of the island of Rodi [in our case at the Rodi (20A:2230) point city/standard port hex containing a 3-cap permanent airfield]:

1 x Ju 52 1T2 0/20

  • Axis Intervention in Iraq EA ill-wishers may be happy with the knowledge that per Rule 12C2a-[Axis] Unrestricted Full Supply Sources, it appears that in a WW ME-based Scenario in which the Balkans are not in play the Aegean Island standard port of Rodi cannot legally become a 4 gsp generating Axis full supply source until the start of the Jun I 41 Axis initial phase. They may say that this turn the Axis player certainly gets his Ju 52 T type air unit, but has no available supply cargo to fly to the Middle East; so it’s a dead issue and pointless reinforcement. Well, I neglected to say earlier that the larger ME/ER-II/“Iraq”/“Syria” Scenario from which the much smaller and cropped special ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration is based also includes a special “home brew” WW Rule 41C5 SE Command “Assault on Crete” add-on segment beginning on the May II 41 Axis turn. And so, for this special EA Scenario demonstration, 2 gsp’s are (in effect) railed from the west or north edge of BF map 14A (practically speaking from the Med/NA Command’s mainland Europe off-map holding box) and then (in effect) shipped in the SE Command’s Aegean Sea zone to the Med/NA Command port of Rodi in the movement phase, and are available there for air transport from the airfield later this turn.

Iraqi forces and Axis/German forces movement, end of movement phase dispositions, and commentary:

In the Central Iraq region [end of turn dispositions]:

Baghdad (22A:2825) [end of turn]:

Iraq capital marker

1 x 1-2-6 Inf XX 3 [never moved]

1 x 1-6* Inf XX: 2 [moved in from adjacent hex 22A:2926]

1 x 0-1-6* Inf XX 4 [moved in from adjacent hex 22A:2826]

Mxd 1A2 1/8 [never moved]

21A:4704 [East of the Tigris River, 3 hexes NNE of Baghdad; regular moved 6 MPs from 22A:2726]:

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 1

221A:2822 [swamp hex; three hexes E of Baghdad; end of exploitation phase]:

1 x 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1

  • This unit regular moves east from Baghdad to 22A:2823 in the movement phase. In the exploitation phase it moves one hex east and enters swamp hex 22A:2822, ending its move.

In the Northern Iraq region [end of turn dispositions]:

Mosul (21A:3509):

1 x Mxd 2A3 1-1/16 (LW) [never moved]

  • The LW air unit is still Red U-1 this turn.
  • It’s tempting this turn to maybe air transfer this unit to the Iraqi Kut al-Imara reference city airbase at 22A:3220; that way it could possibly give DAS to the Baghdad hex at a (twice) halved tac factor due to (also) being Red U-2 next turn. But maybe another game.

1 x Ju 52 1T1 0/20 (LW)

2 gsp’s; generated in the May II 41 Axis initial phase.

  • Near the end of the exploitation the Ju 52 T type air unit, air transporting the 2 gsp’s, flies from the 3-cap permanent airfield at the point city/standard port Rodi hex (22A:2230) on an extended range mission per Rule 23C-Extended Range, to the Mosul dot city hex, exactly 60 hexes—3 times its range.
  • In a WW ME Campaign Scenario game where the Iraqi coup would have collapsed/surrendered this turn per Optional Rule 38J5, then “Iraqi territory, except any hexes occupied by Axis ground or air unit[s]…become[s] Allied controlled.” In our case here, assuming the historical Western Desert Campaign situation in the WW ME Scenario’s Western Desert map group and assuming the beginning of the historical Syrian campaign on the Jun I 41 Allied turn (along the lines of F. Watson’s “Syria” Europa Battle Scenario found in TEM#81), an Axis player like myself would withdraw (per Optional Rule 38J6) later in this same Axis initial phase the LW Mxd A type Axis Intervention in Iraq Conditional Reinforcement and not bring on any more of these Conditional Reinforcements, including this turn’s LW Ju 52 air unit.

Allied air unit activity in Iraq late in the Axis exploitation phase:

Nasiriya (22A:3919) [reference city]:

1 x Bombay 1T2 1-2/15 [air transfer to here from Habbaniya (22A:2828)]

  • Seeing that there is still military campaigning to be done in Iraq, this hard worked air unit transfers here for maximum flexibility the next Allied turn due to its rather limited range.

Commentary: Although I’ve had great fun studying and gaming the “historical” Iraq campaign in the WW ME Campaign Scenario format attempted here, I don’t know if I’ll attempt continuing the special WW ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration beyond this turn, assuming a No Collapse result in the Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table dice roll. I think a first class WW ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration effort going beyond the May II 41 game turn would be played on the Near East map group along with Watson’s “Syria” Europa battle scenario, which begins on the Jun I 41 game turn. But to attempt a successful and authentic WW ME/“Syrian Campaign” Scenario demonstration I feel the need to read some more about the historical campaign. For now a more modest EA demonstration effort would be to continue beyond the end of the May II 41 game turn just the cropped WW ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration, using Watson’s “Iraq” battle scenario as a guide. This I might attempt to do, time down here permitting. I do believe the special WW ME/“Iraq Campaign” Scenario demonstration done so far in some ways nicely parallels parts of the historical campaign, in particular with the Br 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab’s conversion and long eastward drive towards Habbaniya, and also the Bombay T type air unit’s busy air transporting of the several Ind Inf Xs from the Southern Iraq region to the Habbaniya airfield in Central Iraq. Maybe some more Iraq and Syria talk later; right now the immediate issues at hand have unexpectedly given me a “full plate” for the time being. And I wouldn’t want the first part of the “IraqCampaign” to grow too cold and forgotten at the EA, if it hasn’t already!

 

May I 41 Allied Turn

Iraqi force dispositions:

In the Central Iraq region:

Baghdad (22A:2825):

Iraq capital marker

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 2

1 x Mxd 1A2 1/8 [operative]

22A:2826 [canal intensive major rail line/road junction hex W of Baghdad]:

1 x 0-1-6* Inf XX 4

22A:2928 [clear terrain hex SE of Habbaniya (22A:2828)]:

1 x 1-2-6 Inf XX 3

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 1

1 x 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1

Rutbah (21A:5023):

1 cap-permanent airstrip [still owned by pro-Axis Coup Iraq]

Allied movement, end of turn dispositions, and commentary:

Allied Conditional Reinforcements

Iraqi Coup Reaction Forces

Coup Turn 3/May I 41 Allied turn

Middle East:

Convert: 1 x 2-1-8 Cav X 4 and 1 x transport counter (1 RE) to:

1 x 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab

  • This conversion is done in the May I 41 Allied initial phase at hex 22A:5128 [at the ravines road Trans-Jordan/Iraq border hex]:

In Iraq:

In the Central Iraq region:

22A:2829 [the swamp road hex W of Habbaniya (22A:2828), end of turn disposition]:

1 x 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab [this is at the end of the May I 41 Allied turn exploitation phase]

  • Commentary: In its dramatic, epic, and strategically important long-striding eastward motor drive through unfriendly Coup Iraq territory beginning at Trans-Jordan ravines road border hex 22A:5128, the renown Br Habforce motorized infantry unit captures for the Allies both the important Rutbah (21A:5023) one-cap permanent airstrip and the Ramadi hex reference city road hex (22A:2830), the later located only two hexes west of Habbaniya (22A:2828). With the long road/transportation line thus now controlled from Habbaniya all the way back to the Allied standard supply sources in Egypt, the supply crisis threatening the preservation of the Allied Habaniya airfield cantonment will end in the following May I 41 Axis initial phase supply determination.

Habbaniya (22A:2828) [end of turn dispositions]:

3-cap permanent airfield

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 1 As (Col)

1 x Audax 1A1 1/8

  • The Audax A type air unit becomes Red U-2 this Allied initial phase.

1 x Glad 3F3 0/8

  • The Glad air unit is still Black U-1 this player turn.

1 x 2-8 Inf X 21 (Ind)

  • This Coup Turn 3/May I 42 Allied turn Iraqi Coup Reaction Forces Conditional Reinforcement disembarks at Basra (22A:4313) and is air transported by the Bombay air unit based there to Habbaniya (22A:2828).

1 x Bombay 1T2 1-2/15 [inoperative; in the movement phase has air transported the 2-8 Inf X 21 (Ind) from Basra to Habbaniya]

In the Southern Iraq region:

Allied Conditional Reinforcements

Iraqi Coup Reaction Forces

Coup Turn 3/May I 41 Allied Turn

Near East:

Arrive:

1 x 2-8 Inf X 21 (Ind)

  • This unit disembarks at Basra (22A:4313) and is air transported by the operative Bombay air unit based there to the Habbainya hex (22A:2828).

2 steps of attack supply

  • After disembarking at Basra (22A:4313), 1 step of attack supply remains there and the other uses all 5 of the newly arrived SMPs to move up the secondary rail line to 22A:4217, where it ends the turn.

5 SMPs

Basra (22A:4313) [end of turn dispositions]:

Allied standard Supply Terminal marker

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 2 As (Col)

one step of attack supply [conditional reinforcement, disembarks and remains at Basra]

Shaibah (22A:4314):

3-cap permanent airfield [Allied controlled]

22A:4217 [clear terrain secondary rail line hex; end of turn]:

1 step of attack supply [moved 5 secondary rail line hexes from Basra (22A:4313), using 5 SMPs]

Diwaniya 22A:3623 [reference city canal intensive secondary rail line hex; end of turn]:

1 x 8* Inf XX HQ 10 (Ind)

1 x 1-8 Inf X 20 (Ind)

  • Both units have regular moved up the secondary rail line from 22A:4218.

Commentary: One of the toughest decisions regarding Allied play in the special ME/“Iraq Campaign” scenario has been whether or not to have the Allied Iraqi Coup Reaction Conditional Reinforcements arriving at the Persian Gulf major port of Basra either “sit tight” in the Basra/Shaibah zone or else advance towards Baghdad up the secondary rail line leading towards it. In this game I’ve chosen the later strategy.

May I 41 Axis Turn

  • For the second time in this special ME/“Iraqi Campaign” Scenario demonstration, the Allied player in his initial phase, prior to receiving reinforcements, checks for an Iraqi Coup Collapse by a dice roll done using the Variable Iraqi Coup Collapse Table to determine results. As earlier, there is a +1 Modifier for the Allied-owned dot city of Basra; and like on the Apr I 41 Axis turn the roll isn’t done, because the best result could only be a 13, not enough for a Coup Collapse, which requires at least a 14 result.
  • WW ME Scenario clarifications: Per the WitD Neutral Nations OB Baghdad is the Iraqi supply terminal for Iraqi forces (only). Since the May I turn is an air cycle per WW Rule 25 (Intro), I’m guessing that Coup Iraq maybe gets an ARP replacement this turn. See p. 8-9 of the WitD Neutral Nations OB. If so, it’s stored at the Baghdad hex. Finally, I erred earlier when I said that Iraq starts with a rail cap of 4. It begins with 5; in this EA reported game it now has 3 due to the loss of their rail marshaling yard at the dot city of Basra. The Allies currently have a rail cap of 1 in Iraq, with Basra being their rail marshaling yard.

Allied dispositions:

In the Central Iraq region:

Rutbah (21A:5023):

1-cap permanent airstrip [now Allied controlled]

22A:2829 [the swamp road hex W of Habbaniya (22A:2828)]:

1 x 2-1-10 Mot Inf X Hab

Habbaniya (22A:2828):

3-cap permanent airfield

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 1 As (Col)

1 x 2-8 Inf X 21 (Ind)

1 x Glad 3F3 0/8 [operative]

1 x Audax 1A1 1/8 [operative]

1 x Bombay 1T2 1-2/25 [operative]

  • All Allied forces in the Habbaniya are now in regular supply via the Allied-controlled road/transportation line hex element back to either Suez or Alexandria, in Egypt.

In the Southern Iraq region:

  • All Allied units in the Southern Iraq region are in supply via the new Allied standard supply terminal at Basra.

Basra (22A:4313):

Allied standard Supply Terminal marker

1 x 0-1-4 Static II 2 As (Col)

one step of attack supply

Shaibah (22A:4314):

3-cap permanent airfield [Allied controlled]

Diwaniya (22A:3623) [reference city canal intensive secondary rail line hex]:

1 x 8* Inf XX HQ 10 (Ind)

1 x 1-8 Inf X 20 (Ind)

22A:4217 [clear terrain secondary rail line hex]:

one step of attack supply

Axis Intervention in Iraq [Optional Rule 39E4]

Axis Conditional Reinforcements

Coup Turn 3/May I 41 Axis Turn

German:

Med/NA [or Southeast]:

Place at any airbase on the island of Rodi:

1 x Mxd 2A3 1-1/16 (LW)

  • Near the end of the exploitation phase this Axis air unit does a (4X) air transfer mission from the Axis 3-cap permanent airfield at the Rodi (20A:2230) point city/standard port hex on the Aegean island of Rodi to the Mosul (21A:3509) dot city hex in northern Iraq. In so doing it flies over Vichy Levant hexes.
  • This wargamer serves notice at the EA that it currently appears to him that if using WW Optional Rule 38J6-Axis Intervention in Iraq, the text says that all the Optional Axis Near East Forces Conditional Reinforcements found on p. 27 of the WW OB booklet may enter and go (back and forth) through Vichy French hexes “as expeditiously as possible” on their way to the Iraq “Axis intervention” or back to Europe in a final withdrawal. Specifically, “any use of these forces contrary to [Axis intervention in Iraq] is prohibited.” Per Rule 38J6, Axis intervention in Iraq is done apparently absolutely regardless of the Axis Privileges stipulations found at Rule 38V3a-Axis Privileges [in Vichy Levant]. Upon close reading of both WW rules, the Axis forces affected by Rule 38V3a are not the Optional Axis Near East Forces used only in conjunction with Optional Rule 38J6 in the applicable WW Rule 41 campaign scenarios using the Near East map group. Rule 38V3 appears to apply (only) to those Axis Med/NA Command Reinforcement forces coming from the WitD Axis OB booklet in the applicable WW Rule 41 campaign scenarios

Iraqi forces movement, end of movement phase dispositions, and commentary:

In the Central Iraq region:

Baghdad (22A:2825) [end of turn]:

Iraq capital marker

1 x 1-2-6 Inf XX 3 [regular moved to here from 22A:2928, SE of Habbaniya (22A:2828)]

1 x 1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1 [regular moved to here from wwA:2928, SE of Habbaniya]

1 x Mxd 1A2 1/8 [never moved]

22A:2926 [canal intensive major rail/secondary rail junction hex, SW of Baghdad]:

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 2 [regular moved from Baghdad

22A:2826 [clear terrain major rail/road junction hex, W of Baghdad]:

1 x 0-1-6* Inf XX 4 [never moved]

22A:2726 [clear terrain major rail hex, NW of Baghdad]:

1 x 1-6* Inf XX 1 [regular moved from 22A:2928, SE of Habbaniya]

Commentary: Iraqi Coup force attacks this turn against the Habbaniya hex, or perhaps against the Br 2-1-10* Mot Inf X Hab, if possible, would probably be desired in typical Iraqi campaign wargame scenarios, but the estimate done here of the combat odds seen on the Near East map group nixes these good intentions for now in the given EA demonstration. The Allies presently have 1.5 unsupported def factors in the Habbaniya hex, plus a sum of 2 DAS tac facs with the available Audax 1/8 and the Bombay 1-2/15 operative air units both based in the hex, all adding to a total 3.5 defense factors. At best the Iraqis could muster a total of 3 factored attack factors, if the Mxd 1/8 Iraqi air unit doing the GS mission makes it through the Allied Glad F type air unit’s certain interception air mission. Although at 1 to 2 odds a die roll of 6 will fetch a HX, which would be good for ending Iraqi Unsteadiness, the other possible direr combat die roll results make it appear to me best to pursue alternate “non-attack” strategies involving maneuver this Axis game turn. Hence the above Iraqi move.

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