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Posted on Nov 29, 2004 in Armchair Reading

Braunschweig – An After Action Report Part VII

By Zachary Hutchinson

Figure 29-2

I thought it was about time for a few wide shots. Here’s the situation south of Stalingrad. In the upper right hand corner, you can see the Volga. Its bottom right quadrant depicts the entire German hook around the lakes. As you can see, I have a nice screen of units northeast of Lake Sarpa. More reinforcements are coming down through Dagan Nur. The left hand side of the shot shows the Southern Offensive in its entirety. It’s kind of fizzled out, but I keep the units jostling about, forcing the Germans to toss the occasional unit into the flames. About the only German resistance you can see that has any strength are the three paratrooper battalions. The rest are MP, artillery and AA units. This isn’t easy territory to keep up a sustained offensive in. With only one road, supplies aren’t that great and the landscape is dotted with badlands making it easier to defend.


Figure 29-3

Behold, Fortress Baku!

Notice the depth. Notice how insignificant the German invaders look when compared to the might of the Soviet Collective. Allied air reinforcements arrived this turn, so I’d wager, I have absolute air superiority over the southeastern section of the map. I’m leaving all bombers on rest until the battle starts. Only then will I unleash the air power of Fortress Baku.

But the Germans sliding down the Caspian coast are not without friends. Foggy has made alarming progress down through the rough territory south of Tbilisi and has a sizable force at Kirovabad. I may wait until the shock offensive starts – by then the Germans will be pecking on the Fortress gates – before counterattacking and making the Nazis homesick.

I think Turkey could still enter the war – a turn or two may be left. Not sure. For now the 45th Army is thrashing the scattered German regiments sent to secure the vast southwestern flank of those units heading for Baku. The BSCD is looking as solid as ever. The passes behind it are holding.

Figure 29-4

A broad shot of the Don front. West of Kletskaya you can see the staging area for the coming offensive. You can see how I’ve redirected the thrust of the offensive around the line of reinforcements and against the Rumanians. The other small bulge in the northwestern quadrant is an offensive that I’ve given up on for now. Foggy threw his strongest reinforcements into this part of the line and coupled with the landscape (the spots of badlands), I would put this end of the front in too much danger were I to push them further. They aren’t that far from the river and in many places, my supply road runs along the front.

So far the best thing about this scenario is that it seems like you are playing 5-8 smaller scenarios on one map at the same time. This is the middle of the scenario, right when the German superiority is slipping away. And as the Soviet player, I can feel it happening. Just as an example of the range, here’s a list of the smaller battles going on and who’s on the offensive:

– Far Western Don: Foggy has broken over the river in a surprise attack.
– Middle Don Front: I am pushing slowly toward the rail line at Surovinko.
– Stalingrad: Foggy still reigns supreme here in spite of his inability to make any headway.
– Southern Stalingrad Front: My forces, though slow, are pushing the Germans back toward the Don.
– German hook: Foggy swung a number of units around my offensive below the lakes and is heading toward the Volga.
– Astrakhan: I am waiting on an extremely slow engineering battalion to build some bridges so I might begin a push south.
– BSCD & mountain passes: a stalemate
– Central Caucasus: a scattered affair with most of the German strength heading toward Baku.
– Baku & Caspian: Germans still on the attack, but haven’t reached Baku.

There you go.


The 2nd Brigade of the 387th RD managed to cut the rail line at Surovinko! The Rumanians holding the western side of the bulge, south of Sovetskaya, evaporated leaving a gaping hole facing west. I don’t have the numbers to exploit it.

[continued on nextpage]

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