The Let's Play Archive

No Retreat! The Russian Front

by Tevery Best

Part 49: Turn 7 - Soviet Detraining Phase: Yeremenko at Fifth Leningrad. Battle of Lozova.

Turn 7, May/June 1942

The Axis discard Operational Reserves to place a CB marker on the 11th Army.

N. Caucasus Front vs 6th Army
Combat odds: 4/3 = 1:1, no shifts
Roll: 6 - DR
6th Army retreats two hexes.

2nd Tank Army vs 11th Army
Combat odds: 5/3 = 3:2, shifted +1 for Armour bonus for a total of 2:1
Roll: 4 - EX
11th Army takes a step loss and is eliminated. It goes to the Destroyed Units Box. The Axis may place a Kampfgruppe in its location.
2nd Tank Army takes a step loss and is eliminated. It goes to the Destroyed Units Box.

The Soviets decide to repel the German advance in the south with an offensive of their own. The 2nd Tank Army and the North Caucasus Front join forces against the German 6th Army, but the 11th Army interferes with its operational reserves, thus drawing the ire of the Soviet tankers. It is there, around the town of Lozova, right on the boundary between the two German armies that the main action of the battle takes place, with masses of T-34s and KV-1s hitting the weak German line. However, due to lacks in communication and the inexperience of the tank crews, the attacks are a massacre. Platoon after platoon gets blown to shreds by accurate and deadly German AT fire. The toll is high on the defenders' side as well, however, and the 6th Army leaves its positions late on the tenth day of the operation. The 11th is down to a reinforced corps's size. The Red Army armour units are so diminished at this point that they are completely incapable of exploiting this victory, making it quite likely to be pyrrhic in nature.

Leningrad Front vs 2nd Hungarian, 16th Army
Combat odds: 5/5 = 1:1, no shifts
Roll: 2 - CA!

The Germans accept the CA at 1:1 odds.
Roll: 4 - EX
The Soviets play Andrei Yeremenko to shift the attack one column to the left!
New result: CB
A Counterblow marker is placed on Leningrad.

The Germans and Hungarians rest and recuperate as the Soviets bring in more troops and try to push them away from the outskirts of the city. That operation turns out to be a disaster, with the defenders running head-first into German reserves preparing for the assault. The only thing saving the defenders from truly grievous losses is General Andrei Yeremenko, their commander, who manages to rally them in time to halt the advance and maintain the cohesion of the defensive line. But there is no rest for the defenders of the City of Lenin, as the offensive is guaranteed to continue. What's more, it appears that German diplomats may draw the Finnish Army into the fight as well.

Andrei Ivanovich Yeremenko was at one point dubbed the "Russian Guderian". That name was a bit of an exaggeration, as he was a capable commander, but not a great organizer. He commanded the 6th Cavalry Corps when the Soviets invaded Poland in September 1939 and, despite the Poles being ordered explicitly not to engage the Red Army, he managed to botch the logistics of its advance. He distinguished himself greatly during the Great Patriotic War, however, as time after time he was thrust into positions of great responsibility. He commanded the West Front during the defence of Smolensk, the Bryansk Front during Operation Typhoon, and the Southeastern Front during Fall Blau. He was a great leader of man, capable of motivating his troops to great feats of bravery during seemingly hopeless defences or counter-offensives. In the later stages of the war, he commanded the 2nd Baltic Front in Latvia and the 4th Ukrainian in Hungary in Czechoslovakia, smashing the weakened German forces in both places, but those battles were effectively just sideshows.

He survived the war and retired in 1958 as Marshal of the Soviet Union. His ashes are buried in Moscow, near the Kremlin Wall.

Fangz may now detrain any number of units in his Rail Movement Box. They may either be detrained in a friendly City hex or in any hex within three hexes of a friendly City that can trace an Overland Supply Path and is not an enemy-controlled City, adjacent to one, or in an EZOC.

I also need to know if Logicone will want to place a Kampfgruppe in place of the destroyed 11th Army. I should have asked about it before, but I forgot.

The deadline for these actions is Sunday, February 2, 8 PM GMT. If the Soviets insist, Logicone should make his decision first.