"Neustadt Junction" (fictitious) 1984. Federal Republic of Germany. Northern Army Group Area of Operations. British 1st Battalion, Staffordshire Regiment, 7th Armoured Brigade, 1st Armoured Division (UK).
You crouch low and enter the tactical operations "centre" track and the Major hands you a steaming hot mug of tea. It's black, not usually the way you drink it, but it'll do as you're running on 2 hours of sleep from the last 48 hours. The men in this vehicle have scarcely had that. Artillery rumbles in the distance.
The BM directs you to the map of the area of operations, which is covered in blue and red pencil marks, tics, and arrows. An hour ago, time you don't have, you charged the staff with developing a battleplan to defend Neustadt Junction from a Soviet assault.
"Okay, where are we at, Andrew?"
"Sir, Much like our exercises, the Soviets have penetrated at Kirchenheim and are making top speed for the MLR, which our wargaming assumption had postulated."
"Right. Stage is set. How did we get here?" You point at the disposition of squadrons on the map.
"Intelligence is confident we are facing the advanced elements of the Soviet 10th Guards Tank Division. Their forward detachment will consist of a tank company, and likely a motorized rifle company in BMPs with recce and organic artillery support. They'll need to take Neustadt Junction, where we are posted.
Division needs us to hold in order to organize the defense west of our position. The Soviet operational maneuver group could be committed to multiple courses of action more easily if this junction is captured, which is where the we come in. We must hold them today in order to launch a counterattack and blunt the 10th Tank. Andrew knows that you know all of this but he's a thorough one, and this is also for the benefit of the staff present.
Fair enough. What's the plan?
|Neustadt Junction from the British perspective - the Soviets are coming from the table edge at top of the picture. British may set up to halfway down the table (3 feet from the British edge).|
The vignette above nicely sums up the actions that you, my Brigade Major, were asked to develop an hour ago. Our Mechanized Infantry Battalion has been tasked organized as follows:
- 3 mechanized infantry platoons mounted in FV432
- 1 squadron of Chieftain main battle tanks cross-attached to us from the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards.
- Battalion Recce section in Scimitar light tanks.
- 5 x Fire missions of 105mm from the RHA's Abbots. (FASCAM, Smoke, and HE available on request)
There is no time to develop hardened positions, however the men have time to prepare fighting positions, just no vehicle dugouts. Engineers are tied up elsewhere. Tank guns and ATGMs have a 40" range. The entire length of the table, down which the Soviets will be advancing, is 72" and British forces may start at 36". Neustadt is 2/3 of the way from the Soviet baseline, so 48 inches from their edge.
You know the Soviets have a company of tanks, a company of mechanized infantry in BMPs, probably plentiful artillery, and recce in support. All told about 25 vehicles total. This will be a Soviet hasty attack.
My questions to you were as follows:
- What is the defense plan? Where should we post our platoons and the attached armor to stop Ivan?
- What is our Fire Support Plan? Where are we requesting to drop our artillery to support the plan?
- What should we keep as a reserve?
Some coordinating instructions:
- Platoons must stay organic (due to the rules I'll be using) so the armor stays with the armor. We cannot break up the platoons.
- We can start halfway down the table.
- all woods are light woods. Neustadt Junction is a small built up area and will provide cover and concealment to the defenders.
Here are some more pictures to help with your plan development:
|View from the Soviet point of view 1. Woods Alpha is visible on the left, along with Hill Bravo to the rear of the British position|
|View from Soviet approach 2. Hill Charlie is visible on the right|
Please submit your plans to me in the comments below or via email. I have already drawn up the Soviet plan on how I'll assault the position, so I'm looking for a defense plan on where to post the British platoons and the fire support plan to support.
Post your questions in the comments and I'll answer them as either the S2 or S3. Good luck ladies and gentlemen!!