05/07/2015 at 22:16 #27307
It’s 1700 on 1 Feb 1990, and the CLA’s 2nd Air Assault Company, 7th Infantry Battalion, having only recently come ashore at the Bay of Pigs landing site, has taken up defensive positions. The CLA’s 2nd Airborne Battalion twice dealt the enemy heavy blows at El Rincon; the second severe enough to send the enemy’s 6th Armored Battalion wheeling and in retreat towards its base at Cienfuegos. Looking to seize the opportunity to put a major enemy armored formation permanently out of the fight, Generalissimo Waraldonez ordered the 2nd Air Assault Company lifted into blocking positions east of El Rincon to cut off the enemy’s retreat, placing the enemy troops between 1st Airborne Battalion in the west and 2nd Air Assault Company in the east.
A bold move to be sure, but the CLA has now placed the enemy in “death ground,” that patch of real estate in which the enemy cannot sit still and they cannot run, they must attack for the sake of their very own survival. 2nd Air Assault Company was about to reap what the Generalissimo had sown with his overly ambitious battle plan…
So far we’ve had:
1) B Squadron SOF destroyed a radar site in support of amphibious landings at Playa Colorada (5). B Sqdn then egressed and linked up with CLA rotary wing assets for their follow-on mission in Havana (6).
2) C Squadron SOF destroyed a the Cuban military’s communications center.
3) 1st Para Battalion dropped in and seized a bridge to screen the landings at Playa Colorada (5).
4) 2nd Para battalion dropped in and eliminated a Castro-regime garrison to screen the landings at the Bay of Pigs (just west of (4).
5) 1st Marine Company, 3rd Infantry Battalion, made an amphibious assault at Playa Colorada.
6) A Squadron SOF attacked a Castro-regime SAM site near Havana, which failed to clear the way for B Squadron’s helo assault into Havana.
7) 2nd Marine Company, 6th Infantry Battalion, landed at the Bay of Pigs then turned east and ran into a strong enemy force, which it handily defeated.
8) B Company of the UWG pursued and destroyed an enemy garrison in the Escambray Mountains.
9) B Squadron SOF conducted an aerial insertion into Havana to seize a radio station and broadcast news of the invasion.
10) 10th Popular Force Battalion seized and destroyed the Pedroso bridge to protect the Bay of Pigs landing site from the Matanzas garrison.
11) 1st Airborne Infantry Battalion successfully fought off a regime counterattack near the bridge at Sandino, protecting the western (Playa Colorada) landing site from the Pinar del Rio garrison.
12) 6th Infantry Battalion fought through an enemy ambush while pushing inland from the Bay of Pigs landing site.
13) 8th Popular Force Battalion ambushed a mechanized column of the enemy 2nd Armored Battalion, just west of Havana.
14) 2nd Airborne Battalion engaged enemy armored forces of the 6th Armored Battalion in the village of El Rincon, en route to the Bay of Pigs landing site.
15) 4th Infantry Battalion’s 1st Air Assault Company conducts an air assault southeast of Sandino to counter enemy mechanized forces of 3rd Infantry Battalion (forcing 1st Airborne Battalion’s right flank).
16) 9th Popular Force Battalion conducts a spoiling attack on the regime’s 7th Infantry Battalion in the Matanzas garrison.
17) 2nd Air Assault Company, 7th Infantry Battalion, inserts east of El Rincon to block the escape of the regime’s 6th Armored Battalion.
The opposing forces, with regime troops on the left and CLA troops on the right. The CLA force consists of US troops from Pendraken’s Vietnam range, while the regime guys are Argentinians from Pendraken’s Falklands Range with Takara plastic T-34s in support.
The CLA force has a Command Stand representing their Company Commander, seven rifle teams, an HMG team, a TOW ATGM team, a Charles Gustav team, and a single leader figure representing their Battalion Commander. The enemy force has a Command Stand, seven rifle teams, and four T-34 tanks.
Overview of the map, north is up. The enemy is in the bottom left corner, fleeing from the west, trying to escape to the east. The CLA force is divided into two elements, with the rail line, which sits atop an embankment, splitting their defense down the middle. The Colonel is in the north, atop Hill 33, and the Captain is in the south, atop Hill 35.
Enemy tanks surged forward all along the line, with CLA anti-tank assets doing what they could to stem the armored tide. To see how it turned out, please check the blog at:
One more still to post from last week, then I played four more fights this weekend. I also have a SITREP for D-Day to post, then I got into some other stuff as well, so keep your eyes peeled 😉
Jack06/07/2015 at 00:17 #27308kyoteblueParticipant
Wowzer another win for the Commies !!!! Bet they get whipped in the next AAR !!!06/07/2015 at 17:52 #27347
How did I miss this until now? I’ll give it a read later today and the get back to you here. It’s weird that I totally missed this post here and only stumbled upon it on another forum. I’m getting senile I guess.
Cheers and good gaming.
Rod Robertson.06/07/2015 at 19:39 #2734806/07/2015 at 21:22 #27349
Kyote – Actually, the next fight is an ass-whooper for both sides!
Rod – I dunno, you were probably messing around with non-wargaming content on a wargaming site 😉
Michael – Thanks, but actually, no, I bought them like that. I’m not a very good wargamer, I usually don’t strive to make my table as beautiful as it could be 😉
Jack06/07/2015 at 22:58 #27351kyoteblueParticipant
So both sides get a big butchers bill ????06/07/2015 at 23:14 #27352
Mea Culpa! Mea Culpa! Mea Maxima Culpa! But I did learn a lot about dogs and revolutionaries. Viva Che! Viva Fidel! Viva Raoul! Viva la Revolucion Socialista! Damn, how do I make the upside-down exclamation marks?!!
I’ll get back to you soon.
Cheers and good gaming.
PS. The first three letters of Cheers are Che! Sometimes I can’t help myself.24/07/2015 at 19:51 #28076
An interesting battle report. I don’t understand why the regime commander decided to have a T-34/76 climb the railway embankment and expose itself to more effective Carl-G and TOW fire. Had the tank stayed hull-down behind the embankment it could still engage the targets on the hill that it did and gained some protection. It didn’t really matter since the TOW and the Carl-G rolled so poorly but it still seems reckless in hindsight.
Whats with a random event that says a side near the verge of victory and which has taken very light casualties to date is going to decide to pack it in? That’s a bit too random for my tastes. Had this event ended the game, I would not have cried upon my desk top or I-Pad. I would have shaken my head and said dumb rule.
Finally, why did the regime tanks not use their weapons more effectively? They could have raked the hill in front of them with bow mounted MG fire while at the same time suppressing the hill to the north with coaxial MG or main gun fire. It seems they were operating at only 50% of their combat capability. Is this a limitation of the rules or a decisions which you made?
Cheers and good gaming.
Rod Robertson.25/07/2015 at 00:00 #28081
“I don’t understand why the regime commander decided to have a T-34/76 climb the railway embankment and expose itself to more effective Carl-G and TOW fire.”
1) Because they were attacking on way too narrow of a frontage. They could barely clear their own fields of fire, and if the TOW had been hitting he could have whacked a goodly number of them.
2) Because the regime commander started to worry about his flank; for what it’s worth, I would have too. It’s easy to pretend there’s nothing on the other side of the embankment, but given the fact the CLA was able to cause some problems from the other side of the embankment, even after the regime put a T-34 and some infantry up there, is indicative of the problems the CLA could have posed had the regime continued to pretend nothing was over there.
“It didn’t really matter since the TOW and the Carl-G rolled so poorly but it still seems reckless in hindsight.”
I disagree on the reckless part. Once again, you’re not taking into account the tactical situation; we already talked about ignoring the flank, but there’s also the issue (which we’ve previously discussed) of the extremely short ranges on the table. You’ve got to understand, there will be no ‘clean’ fight; at this range, both sides are going to be bloodied, and so it’s better to get your punches in first.
“Whats with a random event that says a side near the verge of victory and which has taken very light casualties to date is going to decide to pack it in? That’s a bit too random for my tastes. Had this event ended the game, I would not have cried upon my desk top or I-Pad. I would have shaken my head and said dumb rule.”
I think that if you’re playing a campaign it can be a very useful rule. What you’ve got to understand (once again) is that you’re only seeing one very small part of the action, and that while you are in command on the tabletop, you’re not in overall command. So this rules represents higher level command (in this case, as low as battalion, but could go up all the way through regiment, division, corps, etc…) ordering you to break it off and focus your effort somewhere else. Happens all the time in real life; in this case, perhaps the rear guard has found itself unable to extricate itself and the armored spearhead is being ordered to face about and save them. Maybe not the best tactical move, but if you’re CO tells you to do it, it’s not up to you.
“Finally, why did the regime tanks not use their weapons more effectively? They could have raked the hill in front of them with bow mounted MG fire while at the same time suppressing the hill to the north with coaxial MG or main gun fire. It seems they were operating at only 50% of their combat capability. Is this a limitation of the rules or a decisions which you made?”
Ahh, the old wargamer ‘fire all your weapons at once,’ and at different targets no less! 😉
I believe the rules state a tank can either fire its main gun or an MG (not worried about whether its AA, co-ax, bow, etc) in a single turn (while activated; react fire could allow it to fire a second time, potentially with another weapon). For what it’s worth, I agree with them as tanks (at least modern ones, maybe I don’t know enough about WWII) don’t fire all their weapons at once, and couldn’t if they wanted to. And engaging separate targets at 60 to 90 degree off-set doesn’t really happen either.
Rodrigo, I think you like to have everything under your control in a wargame; these rules don’t allow you to do that, and I like’em. Nothing wrong with wanting everything under your control, nor with me wanting things a bit more disjointed, just trying to explain the situation. It’s just like we’ve talked about in the past regarding on-table mortar fire (you were wondering why they didn’t fire every turn); the commander has a certain amount of ‘attention’ he can provide each turn (in the form of the number of activations), and so the commander chooses to put some attention on getting the mortars concentrated on a certain target, or he doesn’t. I gather you’d like the mortars to fire every turn, automatically. I like the command focus, and limitations that come with it.
Jack25/07/2015 at 02:52 #28084
You gave the Cubans WWII tanks so WWII SOP’s apply. Fire the Bow MG at targets ahead unless the MG gunner is distracted by operating the radio, and have your gunner fire the Coaxial MG unless the commander orders the use of the main gun. Standard Soviet practice in an assault.
The Cuban player could have avoided crowding by adopting a box formation rather than a line abreast. Climbing the embankment seems to me to expose the Cuban left flank to more risk, but does not seem to gain anything. What could a T-34/76 do on the embankment to protect the flank that it could not do hull-down beside the embankment?
Rod Robertson.25/07/2015 at 03:32 #28086
“You gave the Cubans WWII tanks so WWII SOP’s apply.”
There’s a big difference between the very mechanized, very well-supplied late-war Soviet Army, both in training and experience, as well as logistics, and the Cuban Army, as evidenced by them using WWII-era equipment in 1990.
I would still submit that the bow MG and coax were firing in the same direction, not doing the wargamer “I’ll have the bow MG fire on that squad of infantry, the coax (or AA) MG fire on that squad of infantry, while the main gun engages that tank.” Anyway…
“The Cuban player could have avoided crowding by adopting a box formation rather than a line abreast.”
I get what your saying, but my judgement was that the battlefield did not have enough depth to make a box formation mean anything, the TOWs could still get the second line and the second line wouldn’t have clear line of fire through the first line, which is why I set them abreast to begin with.
“What could a T-34/76 do on the embankment to protect the flank that it could not do hull-down beside the embankment?”
It may be hard to tell, but the embankment is way too steep to go hull down on. The only way to get a look was to go skyline.
Hurry up, you have many more batreps to critique, and I just added another! 😉
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