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Nation Building (Closed) This Land Was Our Land: The American Crisis and the Second Great War Between the States

Sub Genres
Action, Historical, Platonic, Realistic

Fighting Monk

1453 Worst Year of Life
Window Rock (Tségháhoodzání)
The winds drift quietly across the drylands of northern Arizona. Sand is picked up by the occasional gust and carried away from where it had rested for millennia. Some of the men of the Legion could relate to the specks of dust treated mercilessly by the servants of Aeolus. They too were carried away from their homelands by a force of nature you cannot grasp until what you think unmovable is moved. Cherokee, Sioux, Navajo, Apache, the list goes on of men whose ancestors were displaced by conquest and the greed of Europeans and their descendants. They were all assembled now beneath the pale light of the moon and surrounded by the howl of coyote to stop just such an atrocity from occurring once again. Each man listened with silent enthusiasm for their leader, Yiska, to speak. He clears his throat, transitioning to English so that all gathered may understand.​

“I still find myself awestruck whenever I look at the great host of nations gathered at where my people consider the center of the world. Never before has a force of American Indians, the FIRST Americans, been assembled in such numbers in all history. My brothers even here we do what our ancestors could only have dreamed of, what Pontiac and Tecumseh set out to do when they launched their wars of resistance. They sought out to unite all Indians under a single banner to protect our way of life, to protect their children and keep them away from the White Man’s influence. Away from their greed, away from their substance, away from their desire, lust, and conquests. To separate us from the world that would seek to put us down like dogs or make us into the image of themselves. They failed...And ever since our people have faced policies of oppression, expulsion, re-education, rape, murder, termination, and extermination. Even now our children are still taken from some of us to be sent to the White man’s schools. But those days are over, Uncle Sam and all he represented are on the brink of suicide and Lady Liberty weeps at the blood and disaster that plague these lands once again. Yet, we, the Indians, have risen above these catastrophes to lead our peoples to a brighter dawn. Even the whites look to us with envy and suspicion dumbstruck at how those they once called savages are now liberators, how those relegated to poverty stricken lands and torment are now confident and proud of their wealth and achievement.

I speak now to my brothers who hail from Nations not within the League of Peace, for you stand tall in your valor and dedication. To join our ranks in the pursuit of justice, peace, and liberation you have put your lives on the line yet have fought like wolves in your duty. I honor each and every one of you.

Yet, we are at a crossroads people of the nations. We have fought hard in the service of a successor against another in the constant flux of power that seems to emerge at this dark hour. They have restored our rights and sovereignty as would have been known before the days when the United States claimed our land as their own. However, a greater threat grows to our people than the civil wars of a doomed nation. Sitting on the Council of Fires are the people of the Yucatan, the Maya, whose achievements and marvels give prestige and glory to the American Indian lineage. They now are threatened by a dark and evil power that would see not only theirs but ALL of our ways of life extinguished and us along with them. We cannot allow this to pass, for too long our peoples have stood fragmented and unable to stand against the terror of the European peoples in our homelands. But now...Now we can fight back with a vigor unlike that ever seen, greater than Pontiac, greater than Tecumseh. By the will of the Great Spirit we shall triumph over the evil machinations of Evil and restore justice and peace to the land of the Méxica. We have a bold undertaking ahead of us sons of the Great Spirit by we shall triumph. There shall be no more talk. The Die is Cast. We goto war.”

With these last lines uttered Yiska runs through a crowd of cheers as they part way for him. Jumping onto his horse he rides south towards the border with conquest and death trailing behind him.
 

Amfleet

Atomic Birb
Turn 5 Preview: The Ride South



Navajo riders on the path to Parral

Parral, Chihuahua State, Mexico

95 Days Since the Battle of Nogales


A three-mile long column of horsemen, armed trucks, and the occasional light tank trundles down a dusty track to the city limits of Parral, worn down by weeks of fighting and trekking through mountain passes. At the head of the column sit All American League leader Yiska on a white mare named yee naaldlooshii (“It goes on all fours”, after the legendary skin-walker witches). Parral is a ghost town, a remnant of a silver mining boom now past. This and the availability of water from the local river will make it the perfect place to set up a headquarters for the next stage of the war. The few remaining locals will simply have to accommodate them for a couple weeks.

Of course, the best-laid plans rarely survive contact with the enemy, which this time comes in the form of an approaching stick-and-string biplane. The tribesmen of the column scramble to cover themselves and their vehicles in camouflage netting, but once it is clear they have been spotted, they instead begin taking potshots with their rifles and bursts of machine-gun fire, to no avail. As the plane flies off, Yiska orders his scouts ahead into the town and the rest to prepare for a confrontation.

The scouts bring back news of at least a thousand Camisa Verde paramilitaries assembling in the town, probably 2da brigada “El Jefe.” With the first real test of this war on his hands, Yiska decides a lightning strike is needed to settle things quickly. The mounted infantry charge forward to seize buildings on the outskirts and ensure the enemy cannot meet them in the open. These men then attempt to steal their way closer into the town but find the Camisas Verdes have already fanned out, filling the buildings and street corners with sharpshooters. A sniper duel quickly ensues as both sides attempt to smoke the other out, often literally as the Sinarquistas toss petrol bombs into the run-down wooden buildings.

As this fighting begins to take its toll, Yiska plays his trump card and deploy the force’s single tank company. A dozen M2 light tanks and M1 Combat Cars with faded Opposition stripes still showing roll down the streets, peppering the buildings with automatic gunfire or simply functioning as battering rams to demolish the abandoned houses and shops. Few Mexicans have ever seen, much less confronted a tank in combat, and their arrival terrorizes the paramilitaries. Realizing this, Yiska then orders a messenger back to the nearest radio relay. Hours later, Helldivers of the small League Air Force begin dropping dozens of 100-lb bombs on the southern half of the city. Realizing they are up against a superior combined arms force, the Sinarquistas flee back south, telling of the beasts of steel that fight for the red man.

As the sun sets, Yiska rides into the burning town. The ecstatic warriors crowd around yee naaldlooshii, many hoisting scalps of their foes by the hair. To them, the enemy has been revealed to be a paper tiger. He briefly leaves his men to visit the grave where Pancho Villa (sans his head) is buried and ponder the next stage of this war. He asks the spirit of the old revolutionary what will make the Mexican people stand for liberty again. Despite the silence of the grave, he leaves with a renewed confidence to prepare his men to move into the enemy's heartland.
 
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Amfleet

Atomic Birb
TURN 5: 1 MAY-31 AUGUST 1941

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WORLD EVENTS


-Nazi Germany launches Operation Barbarossa, pouring men into the Soviet Union and quickly overrunning the large swathes of western Russia. The remainder of Poland, the Baltic States, and Western Ukraine fall within the first few months as the Soviets reel under the attack. The Franco-British Union does a quick about face in its position on the Bolsheviks and pledge to support them however possible, but at the moment the USSR is clearly on the retreat

-With the supply of arms to China cut off, Japan launches new offensives against the United Front as the Nationalists and Communists squabble amongst themselves. However, the assault quickly reminds them of their shared Chinese identity, and they eventually slow the Japanese attack after only modest gains. The Japanese resort to brutal new bombing raids in retaliation, mimicking the bombing campaigns seen in the former United States to try and win through superior air power

-After a swift German invasion that shatters months of determined Greek resistance to the Italians, German paratroopers take Crete after a costly campaign that causes Hitler to swear off parachute infantry as a tactic, convincing him to use these soldiers as elite infantry instead

REGIONAL WARS

THE WAR OF AMERICAN SUCCESSION


-The war enters a dangerous phase for the Federalists as repeated counter offensives against the Confederates are brutally crushed by near-perfectly placed defenses, forcing them to be called off for fear of greater casualties as soldiers, expeditionaries, and militias alike realize they are being fed into the meat grinder that is Operation Oglethorpe. With the counterattacks repulsed, the Confederates renew their drive north over determined resistance. Operation Mosely takes heavy casualties in its own right, but manages to secure the most important Confederate victory yet and break the Federalist stand at the Battle of Syracuse and cut off the Pennsylvania oil fields, forcing them to rely on imports and dangerous shipments from Erie via Canada

-The first of these offensives are repeated attempts to liberate Washington, D.C as Wallace seeks a major propaganda victory in reclaiming the capital and orders the Canadian Expeditionary Forces to make a push from launch positions in Baltimore. Ram tanks find their route down the Balt-Wash Parkway blocked by tank destroyers and field guns, while the infantry encounters countless prepared machine-gun nests. As many as a third of the force are killed or wounded, forcing the Candian command to order a pullback to Baltimore

-Concurrent attacks on the flank are ordered instead to try and retake the capital as a secondary objective to cutting off the enemy offensive attacks from the south. From across the Chesapeake, forces in Delmarva board landing craft to try and rendezvous with Opposition defectors along the Rappahannock. Seeing the Sons of Liberty flags flying across the bay, they expect to be welcomed with open arms when these flags are hauled down and replaced with Confederate bars as machine guns and artillery open up. The Opposition forces have already been crushed in an earlier offensive, and any of the landing force that is not already sunk or slaughtered on the beaches is forced to turn back

-An offensive from the hills of West Virginia to try and take D.C from the west fairs a bit better due to the open ground making flanking routes more available once commanders realize what is going on and are able to push around the prepared defenses, but it is too little, too late. By this time the Confederates are able to bring more of their own forces to bear and overcome their manpower disadvantage to contain the advance, and with the amphibious operation having failed, a continued advance without support would be suicide

-All this pales in comparison to the murderous general offensive southward, which encounters much the same fate of the other attacks on a much larger scale. The main thrust encounters massive resistance from hedgehog-style defenses, hurling millions of men against defenses concealed against air cover. Despite the resistance, the offensive makes progress and briefly retakes the vital junction at Scranton before losing it in the opening days of Operation Mosley

-Operation Mosley, the Confederate counteroffensive, concentrates its forces into a single push where the Federalists have been battered the hardest in an effort to separate the Federalists from the valuable Pennsylvania oil fields by taking Syracuse, something they are able to narrowly manage as Federalist troops use their massive numbers and air superiority to reorganize and recover from the strategic disasters of the last few months. This initiative not only seizes a slice of the oil for the Confederates, but has greatly impacted Federal supply lines to lessen the impact of Federalist airpower

-The storm is all too perfect, the Federalist brass begins to realize as the horrors of these defeats begin to roll in. Tests of encoding machines and counterintelligence do not hint at any sort of breaking of the Federalist codebooks, yet every major offensive has been met as if the enemy had an exact drawing of the battle plan and had been able to plan his defensive moves based on the precise line of attack. An air of scandal rocks the Wallace administration as a panicked leadership seeks to find out if they have been betrayed, and if so, by whom?

THE GREAT PLAINS WAR

-With the Million Man Offensives having made significant gains but exhausted their supply lines, the Communist leadership settles for a series of more tactical operations designed to resist counterattacks and focus on opening a pathway into the Rockies while killing or capturing as many of the enemy as possible. The Occidental League also digs in, and the two sides largely come to blows over control of the Arkansas River

-A limited red advance in the north is met by Operation Meade, a Free States initiative to deny the enemy resources in upper Minnesota and settle into a more defensible line. Though it gives up territory by design, the operation is a classic example of defense in depth and inflicts substantial casualties on two large communist pincers that had intended to encircle them, forcing it to halt before reaching its own goals and the main Free States fallback lines

-With the fight on the ground slowing somewhat, the war in the air escalates as the two sides attempt to wrest air superiority over vast spaces and bomb the other into submission. The ALAF mounts persistent night raids over Oklahoma to destroy aircraft and suppress enemy air defenses, keeping its own casualties relatively light and stymying the Gulf’s rebuilding efforts in spite of Confederate assistance. However, by the late summer, the night advantage begins to dissipate as anti-aircraft guns begin to receive the new Proximity Fuze

-These come as the Free States launches its aerial counteroffensive, Operation Dehousing. With a greater focus on construction of bombers, escorted raids of B-24s and He-111s make several large raids on Wichita, Kansas City, and Marxville and cause extensive damage. One night raid even reaches Chicago, causing lesser damage but shaking confidence among a civilian populace who believed they would be safe so far from the front

-The most significant fighting of the “Summer Stage” begins with a communist strike on OL forces massing in eastern Colorado preparing their own counterassault to the east. The Battle of Pueblo sees a massive combined arms fight, with both sides bringing major tank and aerial arms to bear in a pitched battle where neither side has significantly fortified the immediate battlefield. Superior red infantry numbers once again decide the battle, but the Occidental League is fighting on equal terms in armor and aircraft for the first time, a product of the supply lines continuing to lengthen for the reds and shorten for the Free States

-During this battle, the first cracks in the unity of the communists begin to show themselves publicly. Several brigades needed to close the right flank fail to carry out their orders, instead inciting a Trotskyist mutiny which political officers and nearby loyal units struggle to put down, delaying the attack and buying time for an armored train from Cañon City to arrive and cover the retreat. The beginning of the war between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany further puts the USRA in a difficult position, as it is forced to choose between alternatives that cannot satisfy both factions of the party

GUERRAS CENTROAMERICANAS

-Defying any predictions, Mexico now faces a war on two fronts as the League of Niʼ Ałníiʼgi launches an ambitious attack across the border in a conflict that specifically targets the Synarchist regime and aims to restore the Partido de la Revolución Mexicana as a means of ending the Mayan Genocide in the Yucatan and Guatemala. Seeking refuge in audacity, the tribesmen field several divisions in an attack southward across sparsely populated terrain that is geographically similar to the homeland

-Though their forces are still tiny in comparison to the Mexican Army, they take advantage of the indigenously-made armored vehicles that have served them so far and a small number of aircraft and tanks that the Mexicans are unable to match and easily neutralize the few border guard units still present since war began with the PDP to the south, taking the sparsely populated states of Chihuahua and Sonora as well as the entirety of Baja California which is found to be home only to a few surprised militias

-By late summer, northwestern Mexico is entirely in the hands of the All American League or various leftist groups under operating the PRM banner. These groups are united under the leadership of Miguel Alemán Valdés, a moderate leftist who had escaped house arrest and is seen by more left-wing members of the group as someone palatable to the AAL warriors who have spent the last year fighting communist aggression

-The initial success is indeed stunning and sends shockwaves throughout the nation, and though the Sinarquistas are slow to respond, the first real opposition comes in Culiacán as loyalist police and brownshirts fight a pitched battle that is ongoing and sees the first major operation of the League of Niʼ Ałníiʼgi’s small air force to strike hostile targets. More organized army forces begin to come to bear by late August, and the struggle to hold the north is just beginning

-On the southern front of the conflict, the Republic of the Gulf keeps up its support of the Mexicans over the objections of its Occidental League allies, effectively being on the opposite side of its neighbor in the war but separated by hundreds of miles. Gulf Navy cruisers in both the Carribean and Pacific hammer Honduran and Salvadoran coastal cities, particularly in La Ceiba where several city blocks are laid to waste by shelling in the name of disrupting the PDP’s supply lines

-In spite of this display of firepower, the Mexican advance has largely ground to a halt as a result of the All American League’s intervention, which has breathed new hope into a group of PDP nations who until now had believed they were abandoned by the outside world. They now dig in their heels in a more spirited defense against the invaders, with the ongoing genocide against the Mayans proving that they must stand or die

-Though the Mexican forces are now increasingly stretched, they nevertheless spare squads of vengeful Brownshirts to continue rounding up Mayans and suspected leftists for the slaughter. Despite these people having committed no crime or waged no war, they are nevertheless murdered by the conquerors, the toll of an isolated nation’s anger. The AAL forces are still a long way off, but just how many more will be lost before victory is achieved is unknown. Until then, the numbers will continue to tick upward, every digit a human life taken by a neighbor


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-The war enters a dangerous phase for the Federalists as repeated counter offensives against the Confederates are brutally crushed by near-perfectly placed defenses, forcing them to be called off for fear of greater casualties as soldiers, expeditionaries, and militias alike realize they are being fed into the meat grinder that is Operation Oglethorpe. With the counterattacks repulsed, the Confederates renew their drive north over determined resistance. Operation Mosely takes heavy casualties in its own right, but manages to secure the most important Confederate victory yet and break the Federalist stand at the Battle of Syracuse and cut off the Pennsylvania oil fields, forcing them to rely on imports and dangerous shipments from Erie via Canada

-During the enemy’s counteroffensive, the Federalists receive unlikely support from two divisions of West Coast Protectorate forces under Major General Walton Greene. Though these men are technically servants of a foreign power claiming American soil for their own, the Karufornia soldiers nevertheless are ordered to fight ferociously against the incoming Confederates and indeed do so, losing thousands of their number at the Battle of Ithaca during the second advance on the Finger Lakes. Though their action delays the enemy substantially, the Karufornian troops take the brunt of the advance in this sector and are completely overrun, Greene’s headquarters and staff evacuating but most of the men are listed Missing in Action and presumed prisoners

-Two tactical operations by the Federalists see some success. The first is a raid by Piranha midget submarines on the Potomac targeted at the hastily-built Anacostia Internment Center, where dozens of high-profile political prisoners are broken out by special forces. With no means of extracting them in the tiny vessels, they are given false identity papers and put on the Silver Meteor to Miami, then on a boat to Havana where a BOAC plane takes them to New York. From there, these VIPs are revealed to include Harry F Byrd Jr., who will now be one of several powerful anti-Confederate voices broadcasting into Virginia

-Raids aimed at dropping in the “Vampire” force with supplies to train and equip the numerous pockets of resistance are conducted as resistance to the Confederates continues to grow despite Confederate efforts. Beyond this task, the Vampires also carry flares, satchel charges, and radios to act as forward air controllers for bombing raids, which helps to diminish the Confederate advance substantially as marshalling yards and highway junctions find themselves being hit with surprising precision day and night

-The Vampires are frequently accompanied by the new Overland GPW, or “Jeep.” This vehicle is lightweight but able to grant high mobility to several men and a squad’s worth of equipment, and is small enough to join a glider assault team. Jeeps quickly take over as the favored staff car for officers and can function as scouting vehicles, beasts of burden, or even as a machine gun platform

-Confederate soldiers advancing in Operation Mosely find them opposed by one of the most advanced new tanks of the era, the M4 Sherman. Largely based on the Grant, the Sherman has a lower profile and puts its 75mm Gun M3 in a fully rotating turret. Simple to produce and better than any other design on the continent, the Sherman is intended to be “the tank the Federalists will win the war with” though as chronic fuel shortages begin to take a greater toll, all that now seems in doubt

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-Across the Badlands and Oklahoma, the Occidental League and American Liberation Army dig their forces in and prepare for a meat grinder battle, expecting the other to strike but instead trading bombs and artillery as the conflict stabilizes on these fronts. Far to the north, the League intentionally makes a fighting retreat against a limited ALA offensive, falling back to more defensible lines around the Missouri River. The offensive captures the primary objective of Bismarck, and Browder declares a North Dakotan Socialist Republic. Operation Meade, the retreat by the Occidental League, was designed as a defense-in-depth, and once again inflicts heavy enough casualties to deplete offensive capability on this front for some time

-The most significant fighting of the “Summer Stage” begins with a strike on OL forces massing in eastern Colorado preparing their own counterassault to the east. The two sides have both been preparing offensives in this sector, but Army Group Kansas under General Raven is forced to start the battle on equal terms in order to preempt the enemy attack with the knowledge that more reinforcements will arrive during the course of the battle. The Battle of Pueblo sees a massive combined arms fight, with both sides bringing major tank and aerial arms to bear in a pitched battle where neither side has significantly fortified the immediate battlefield

-Superior American Liberation Army infantry numbers once again push back the enemy, but the Occidental League is fighting on equal terms in armor and aircraft for the first time, a product of the supply lines continuing to lengthen for the reds and shorten for the Free States. The enemy is once again savaged, but able to keep the line of retreat up into the well-defended mountains open through tenacious fighting and use of the new anti-tank lance against light tank charges. Several brigades needed to close the right flank fail to carry out their orders, instead inciting a Trotskyist mutiny which political officers and nearby loyal units struggle to put down, delaying the attack and aiding the escape

-Making his first official visit to occupied territory in Lincoln, Nebraska, General Secretary Browder is filmed a propaganda reel which is required viewing for all residents on the first anniversary of the war’s beginning. The film shows him giving a speech about the liberation of American soil and honoring the soldiers of the American Liberation Armed Forces who have given their lives in the brutal fighting to reach this stage, presenting gifts and medals to the mothers of several soldiers who performed particularly heroic deeds. This helps to build Browder’s image as a unifying and caring figure rather than just the man who ordered their sons to their deaths, improving his position among the populace, though divisions in the Party continue to grow regardless

-The film also emphasizes the need to wage “Total War” claiming that “Total War is the Shortest War.” To do so, more civilian factories building appliances and other home goods are stripped down and retooled for military production. Production of nonessential goods is put on hold, and Party members are made to temporarily forfeit their privileged items such as washing machines and household refrigerators for the duration of the war effort

-Production of aircraft is the main focus of this initiative, as the USRA finds itself locked in a duel with the Occidental League for control of the skies and bombing raids begin to find major cities briefly including Chicago. The bombings of Wichita, Kansas City, and Marxville are particularly devastating and shake the morale of the populace. In response, more F1 Thunderflash night fighters are constructed to counter the night raids, as are the Yak-1 for interception of less common daylight raids and air superiority over the front. The IL-2 ground-attack aircraft is also prioritized, as increasing numbers of OL tanks must be countered

-The beginning of the war between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany puts the USRA in a difficult position. The knowledge that Leon Trotsky resides in Detroit and that both nations are essentially in the World War together divides the politics of the Party between those who want Trotsky to be fully dealt with to appease Stalin and those who wish to keep him protected on principle. Rumors of a Trotskyist coup or anti-Trotsky purge swirl and Samizdat supporting Trotsky’s ideas for reform and conduct begin to spread, particularly across Michigan and Illinois. The police suppress this wherever possible, but it is certain that the Browder and the Presidium will have to take a clear position before any of his subordinates take a drastic action

-Much of this Samizdat deals with the rumor that a high-profile Lincoln Division veteran by the name of Col. Jacob Eppstain was murdered by political officers during the million-man offensives for his objections to the mass tactics used. In his Party obituary, the newspapers insist that he committed suicide due to war-related stress, but many in the ranks are coming to believe that Eppstain didn’t kill himself

-The conflict with Germany challenges the USRA’s international relations in other ways. A potential oil deal with the Soviets falls through as a result of the Nazi invasion, as do any arms deals for the immediate future. The Soviets instead propose a new rapprochement with the Franco-British Union and specifically Canada, which has agreed to stop enabling agitation against the USRA and reopen trade if Browder is able to secure a renewed non-aggression deal with the Soviets. The Trotskyists view this with suspicion and urge the Presidium to reject the deal, but if Browder were to do so, it might be seen as a triumph for their political power

-With current rifle grenades underwhelming, the Republic Developmental Institute experiments with several different solutions to increase infantry firepower and lob explosives farther and faster. The winner of the design competition is the M23 “Jack in the Box,” an over the shoulder grenade launcher that combines a rifle grenade cartridge with a large spring in a tube to lob a two-pound projectile at an accurate range of 110 yards. An anti-tank grenade can also be launched from this contraption, though it requires the user to get dangerously close to a tank

-With the gateway to the Rockies held, the Institute is also tasked with preparing for intense mountain fighting where hillside bunkers, caves, and tunnels will abound. Engineers devise a clever but terrifying new bomb to respond to this challenge. Filled primarily with ammonium nitrate and aluminum powder with a small charge at the center, the “Daisy Cutter” has little fragmentation but instead produces a large and continuous blast wave. Field testing on a bunker near Pueblo shows that most of its victims die of suffocation as the high fuel ratio of the bomb consumes all the oxygen in the vicinity

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-Making the most of intelligence reports about a Federalist counteroffensive, General Patton lays an elaborate trap for the incoming Yankees designed to exact as heavy a toll as possible. Operation Oglethorpe, as most aspects of the incoming attack are planned for with great precision. Static defenses and mobile encirclement forces rout most of the offensives, at times with over 60% casualties from the forces committed. The most successful of the enemy strikes, which comes from West Virginia and has a large armored force, is not as easily contained, but becomes encircled near Harrisonburg and is forced to make a fighting retreat out of the pocket and is constantly harried by concentrated aerial attack

-Operation Mosley, the Confederate counteroffensive, concentrates its forces into a single push where the Federalists have been battered the hardest in an effort to separate the Federalists from the valuable Pennsylvania oil fields by taking Syracuse, something they are able to narrowly manage as Federalist troops use their massive numbers and local air superiority to reorganize and recover from the strategic disasters of the last few months. This initiative not only seizes a slice of the oil for the Confederates, but has greatly impacted Federal supply lines to lessen the impact of Federalist airpower. Patton is promoted to Field Marshal by President Russell for the success of the attack, which he sees as putting southern victory within reach

-A secondary attack within Operation Mosley focuses on reaching the port city of Wilmington. Instead of waging another fierce street by street battle to retake Baltimore, control of Wilmington cuts off Federalist forces in the area as well as on the Delmarva Peninsula from all but sea and airborne resupply, an important tactical operation within the overall strategy of dicing the enemy into manageable pieces

-The war on the frontlines has so far been a success against all odds, but well behind the front the counterinsurgency campaign has proven to be much more challenging. Federalist infiltrators are virtually indistinguishable from the rest of the civilian populace, and they wage a powerful campaign of sabotage that makes many of the more ambitious parts of Operation Mosley impossible. Branding the Patriot Cookbook “The Anarchists’ Cookbook”, its ingredients are restricted to the full extent possible. Agriculture in the Virginias and Kentucky is hampered as fertilizer purchases require jumping through bureaucratic red tape, while gasoline ration cards now include the name of their rightful user who must present identification and state their purpose to receive their fuel. A black market flourishes, but this also gives the SD plenty of chances to set up honeypot operations which net hundreds of partisans. Heavy-handed methods are not strictly necessary, however, as many areas are pacified simply by doling out increased rations to buy the trust of the locals

-In order to prepare for an escalated campaign against this partisan rabble, advisors from the League of Niʼ Ałníiʼgi arrive to teach the Confederates what they know about insurgent warfare, having gained much experience in this type of fighting. In exchange, they receive large caches of weapons seized from Opposition armories, including tanks, which will serve them well in the campaign against Synarchist Mexico. The forces they train also receive the Desert Eagle rifle and Camel Back water packs, which are ideal for high-endurance missions

-These “Bushmen” are sent on a campaign deep into the mountains of West Virginia to root out the partisans and will wage this campaign with all the brutality necessary to ensure this menace is silenced. Coal Country proves exceptionally challenging, as the difficult terrain and endless hills and forests prove to be hell on earth for any attacker. Many of the partisans are experienced coal miners with stashes of digging equipment, and much of the campaign now and to come will be spent rooting them out of endless tunnels and mines. Typical of the early stage of this campaign is the Battle of Elbert, where a small insurgent force is dislodged from the hamlet only for larger forces to overrun a Confederate battalion after emerging from the surrounding hills with rifles and mortars. Many more lives will be spent before this campaign is finally settled

-Collaboration with the Republic of the Gulf continues in the development of the Air Force and Navy, the latter being particularly crucial as the Confederacy seeks to bounce back from defeat at the Battle of the North Atlantic and resume commerce raiding against the Franco-British Union. New Arkansas-class battlecruisers are laid down as the Admiralty hopes it can replicate the relative success of the Scharnhorst against the Union Navy, as are the large oceangoing American Diver-class submarines. A collaborative radar system with the Gulf under the auspices of “Project Blue” is also a major contributor to the pushback against the Federalist air forces, though the largest blow on that front is the increasing deprivation of its fuel supply

-Though two-way radios have existed for some time, designers at Southern Bell develop the first handheld version that can be used by any soldier in the field and not just a specialist in a large backpack. The “Handie-Talkie” packs five vacuum tubes into a waterproof case, and is an instant hit, especially among mechanized infantry who can use it to communicate with the tanks and counter-insurgency Bushmen who use it to coordinate with aircraft to great effect

-Toying with imported Gulf radar sets, a Confederate Air Force colonel manages to successfully miniaturize the set in a small insulated container that reflects microwave radiation to agitate the particles within food, cooking it with incredible speed. This “Radar Range” is far less expensive than a regular radar set, but will still be out of reach for consumers for some time. It is excellent for cooking for large groups however, which can be nifty when feeding an army that craves hot chow

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-As the shock of the initial communist incursion onto Gulf home soil subsides, the Oklahoma Front becomes static over the summer months. This provides a critical reprieve for the Gulf to reorganize its forces and build defensive positions in the inner sectors of the Alamo Line. During this frozen conflict, the reds sit back on the other side of the Cimarron River as the Gulf troops lay mines and build fortifications, save for the occasional artillery shell and constant aerial dueling. In Operation Crake, Oklahoma City is slowly turned into a fortress as the civilian populace is evacuated and various defensive positions are constructed, the streets being made impassable to tanks save for a few controlled checkpoints that can be demolished at a moment’s notice

-These initiatives are overseen by the newly formed Strategic War Office (SWO), which is organized solely as a homeland defense command and housed at Fort Hood, south of Dallas. This command theatre exists solely to ensure the reds do not get further into home soil, or at least without crippling themselves in the process. The Gulf Expeditionary Force, now commanded by General Bradley of the Free States, remain an independent command, as does any naval aviation not immediately needed for homeland defense

-These fortification and organizational efforts are paired with a mass transfer of troops from the Mexican border. Mexico has been largely dealt with from the Gulf perspective, even as naval intervention continues far to the south. The Mexican government is incensed by the Gulf’s refusal to do anything about the All American League’s invasion, but with Mexican revolutionists in the mix the Gulf ambassador brushes this off as an internal affair knowing that Mexico has a long way to go before it can ever be a threat to the Gulf once more

-Since one existential threat still remains, Allred exercises an abundance of caution and forms the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to ensure an emergency supply of oil far from the front where it can be resupplied in any eventuality. Ships loaded with drums of oil sail for Pensacola with the precious stockpile, knowing it can easily be shipped back by rail as needed. An even more precious cargo tags along, the children of Oklahoma families displaced by the fighting and the evacuation of Oklahoma City, shipped off to Floridian foster families as a humanitarian gesture

-The humanitarian toll of the war is indeed increasing, but some relief comes from the Gulf’s Confederate allies in the form of a food aid program, sending powdered milk, mixed agricultural products, and seafood to war refugees from Oklahoma and elsewhere. All this comes as Allred continues his public relations campaign to keep rallying the people against the red menace through public speeches and appearances at war industry site. The pause by the enemy in Oklahoma and news of dissension in the enemy ranks both go a long way to rebuild confidence, even as bombs continue to fall across several cities

-Despite the increasing prevalence of television for the upper crust and radio for the masses, the pre-recorded record remains an important part of the propaganda machine, able to store patriotic music for events and distribute speeches for education or, if necessary, re-education. Jazz music from the Free States is also becoming popular, and Breeze Records of Orlando makes a breakthrough in their quest to distribute more of this popular music in a clearer format. The vinyl “Long Play” record can not only store more audio per side, but is more capable of playing modern popular music in a high quality by ditching abrasive shellac compounds

-Ties with the Confederates are also leveraged for military rebuilding. Knowing that many Opposition soldiers are still under arms and defying the Confederacy, President Allred brokers a ceasefire with the Opposition soldiers to give them the chance for safe passage with their families to the Gulf to join the fight against Bolshevism. A paltry few hundred battered men in some Opposition holdouts take up the offer and are shipped west, but the vast majority are “true believers” in Byrd’s vision for the USA and are willing to meet their end as the ceasefire ends in a hail of Confederate artillery

-While little manpower can be acquired with Confederate help, the flow of arms from the east helps keep the Gulf soldier the best equipped of any successor nation as manufacturing is often outsourced to Confederate factories in exchange for expertise in building the valuable designs such as the Buccaneer fighter and “Tamer” Tank Lance. Using the Confederate factories to gain economies of scale with Gulf raw materials, these machines are built in greater numbers than ever, combining with the Free States aircraft initiative to begin out-producing the reds and take control of the skies in the daytime. New weapons also come from the west, chiefly the new self-loading rifle which has now become standard issue, but also the Bear of California infantry tank which is used in a complementary role to the cavalry-oriented Mustang. The Theimer M01 is also produced in WCP factories, as Allred famously refers to this device as more important to the Gulf Army than water

-Another major form of cooperation with the Confederacy is unification with its radar network, codenamed “Project Blue.” Powerful cavity magnetron radars are distributed to the Confederacy to help them push back against the Federalist aerial offensive, and span the entire border between the two nations and the communists to the north. The initiative drives up tensions between the communists and the Confederacy, mortal enemies who have managed to hold onto a truce despite their most significant foreign sponsors going to war

-After toying for years with the primitive motorjet concept, engineers at Piper Aircraft refine the design to overcome the extremely rapid fuel consumption by interrupting the fuel supply at intervals rapid enough to keep sustaining combustion. This “pulsejet” engine is quickly dubbed the “Bumblebee” for its distinctive sputtering sound, and a testbed plane with two of these engines is able to achieve an astonishing 503 miles per hour. Though incredibly cheap compared to intricate piston engines, these engines wear themselves and the airframe out in less than two hours. More refinement is clearly needed, though this is a massive leap and opens the door to incredibly fast disposable aircraft

FreeStatesInfoboxPNG.png

-The pacing of the war begins to slow as enemy manpower is reduced and his supply lines continue to grow in length, while the Free States exploits its massive land spaces to continue wearing down the enemy as while falling back into more favorable defensive terrain. The struggle of this phase of the war is more focused on the skies, as both sides carry out bombing raids on industry and logistics to wear the other down

-For the Free States, the aerial offensive is titled Operation Dehousing for its attempts to demolish industry and morale alike as civilians are displaced and factories wrecked. With a greater focus on construction of bombers, escorted bomber wings make several large raids on Wichita, Kansas City, and Marxville and cause extensive damage. One night raid even reaches Chicago, causing lesser damage but shaking confidence among a civilian populace who believed they would be safe so far from the front

-To carry out this initiative, the newly-relocated factories across the Rockies are retooled to crank out aircraft with the assistance of the recent robotic arm design. Working with Occidental League allies, fighter forces are topped off with Buccaneer aircraft before the production focus switches to greater and greater numbers of bombers. Ironically, the Free States finds itself pairing B-24 Liberators built under Federalist license with Heinkel He-111 bombers purchased from the Confederacy, the latter re-engined to accept the more available Wright Cyclone over the German design. In part as a result of this initiative, as well as less frequent diversions for battlefield support during this phase of the conflict, the Occidental League as a whole is able to muster enough aircraft to regularly send raids deep into enemy airspace and manage to wrest air superiority from the enemy at the Battle of Pueblo

-On the ground, a limited red advance in the north is met by Operation Meade, a Free States initiative to deny the enemy resources in upper Minnesota and settle into a more defensible line. Though it gives up territory by design, the operation is a classic example of defense in depth and inflicts substantial casualties on two large communist pincers that had intended to encircle them, forcing it to halt before reaching its final goals and the main Free States fallback lines, though much of North Dakota is sacrificed in the process

-The most significant fighting of the summer offensive begins with a communist strike on OL forces massing in eastern Colorado preparing their own counterassault to the east, codenamed Operation Sherman. Both sides plan a major offensive, but instead fight an encounter battle in the foothills of the Rockies. With few preparations to fight defensively, both sides bring major tank and aerial arms to bear in an attempt to surround the other. Superior red infantry numbers once again decide the battle and force the cancellation of Operation Sherman, but the Occidental League is fighting on equal terms in armor and aircraft for the first time, a product of the supply lines continuing to lengthen for the reds and shorten for the Free States

-The Free States have more reason for increased confidence in their aerial warfare after a breakthrough in the development of Proximity fuzes. Further developing the potential to miniaturize the type of magnetron recently developed by the Gulf, these shells broadcast a small radio signal that travels only a few feet at a time but are reflected back by nearby objects, increasing the effectiveness per shell as much as ten times over. These shells can only fit in the larger anti-aircraft guns such as the five-inch design for now, but further miniaturization could see them deployed on aircraft autocannon for use against other aircraft

-Another breakthrough comes on the economic front as prospectors seek ways to access the oil deposits of Carbon, Utah, which are right at the surface but locked in a mixture of sand and water. Using cheap natural gas burners, the prospectors pump huge amounts of steam into the earth near a deposit to make the heavy oil more viscous and flow upwards at an extraction point. Though this generally only extracts around 30-40% of the oil in a given deposit, it nevertheless opens up more opportunities to keep oil-thirsty forces supplied and opens up opportunities for foreign sale

-Numerous political developments occur as the Free States not under enemy occupation hold their first elections since their states seceded from the union. All eight states able to hold elections elect new governors and legislative bodies swept over by the “Bull Moose Party,” which rides to victory on the population’s frustration with the inability of the decentralized government to fully repel the reds. As it promises a sort of “New Libertarianism” that upholds the main principles of the Free States while taking greater measures to collectively defend its people, the next meeting of the Governor’s Committee could see bold new initiatives that change the constitutions of this individualist paradise

-Several reforms are seen across the states in the near term, firstly the desegregation of the armed forces due to black contributions to the war effort, a step not taken by its allies in the Occidental League but one that helps to increase African-American enthusiasm for the war effort against an enemy that itself promises them better rights. Reforms for women are also introduced to reward the female contributions to industry and society, allowing them to keep their jobs after the war and preventing them from being fired on the basis of sex alone, including the pretext of pregnancy

-Looking for unconventional means to motivate the populace, Mr. House provides WPB commissions to dozens of jazz artists across the Free States to produce new works that glorify the war effort, some of the latest hits being “Rocky Mountain Breakdown” and “No No Mr. Marx.” These commissions show that while disjointed, the Free States government is with the times and will help the free people of America emerge victorious against the odds with help from a superior jive

WCPInfoboxPNG.png

-An indespensible player in the Occidental League, President Taylor again drives for more recruits to keep the red menace as far from Karufornia as possible. With plenty of cash from growing sales of oil and other raw materials to Japan, the Protectorate Army is able to offer an enlistment bonus of five strong Protectorate Dollars for every referral a soldier brings into the force. While not exactly swelling the ranks, this does bring in enough soldiers for six new divisions to defend the home front, freeing six more to head west

-Two of these divisions are equipped for urban combat and head off to Oklahoma to participate in Operation Crake, the defense of Oklahoma city. Though the enemy offensive here does not materialize, they help to build up local defenses and provide conversion kits that allow heavy machine guns to fire shotgun shells in close range combat, further locking down the city and providing some peace of mind to those further south. Another two divisions arrive in the Free States in time to participate in the Battle of Pueblo, participating in maneuvers to try and encircle the enemy as the Operation Sherman offensive turns into a defensive effort instead. Here they hold off several waves of enemy assault before being pulled back once again due to the insurmountable numbers of enemies. They will now take up positions in the Rocky Mountains proper and wait for the enemy to come

-The final two head via Canada to Pennsylvania, where they arrive to shore up Federalist defences after a series of disastrous offensives leave them short of manpower. Tragically, these divisions are almost entirely wiped out, taking at least 40% casualties in a valiant stand against Operation Mosely. The remainder are believed to be overrun and taken prisoner, a certain strain on relations with the Confederates who likely were not expecting their entry into this war as well

-All the forces sent east to either conflict are given extensive training in close quarters combat with assistance from the Protectorate Special Gendarmerie as military planners anticipate close-quarters combat in the near future. Though seemingly dated, proficiency with a bayonet is expected, as is hand-to-hand combat and room clearing tactics, with an emphasis on sheer brutality that can strike fear into the enemy. Should the fighting come to a street brawl, the soldiers of the Protectorate Army will certainly be ready

-Specialist weapons for this type of conflict are produced and requisitioned in large numbers, particularly shotguns such as the Winchester Model 1897 Trench Gun, which hit the production lines again after many years. The Theimer M01 AT Lance is also produced domestically for the first time, as this revolutionary design is particularly effective against tanks at close range and can also be used as a means of projecting explosives against an enemy position or simply terrorizing them with their loud explosions

-Seeing success with its innovations in tank designs so far, the President personally organizes a “Brain Trust” of weapons designers that analyze available and captured tanks to look for ways to bring the best components together. The immediate result of this initiative is the enhanced Type 100 “Grizzly” tank, which scales up the Type 99 chassis and adds additional armor and the 75mm Gun M3 that has proven so effective on the Grant tank. Powering this is a V12 engine reverse engineered from that of the fast BT tanks that have been captured in significant numbers both in China and the Great Plains

-Throwing their weight behind the Free State’s initiative to wrest air superiority from the communists, 150 new A6M fighters are sent to the front to bolster the Occidental League’s air forces. Dozens of Bear and Grant tanks manufactured under license are sent to the Gulf and Free States as well for incorporation into their armored forces while factories retool to produce the Grizzly, and these machines see combat at Pueblo as some of the few effective machines that can repel the infamous People’s Colossus

-With its neighbors fighting off communist infiltration on top of the usual petty crime, the PSG receives funding to create special informant rings, members of which have special legal protections and are inserted within suspected crime or spying rings to gather intelligence. As the communists do not hold any of its home soil, Karufornia has a better time than most of avoiding the waves of infiltrators in turncoats than its partners in the Occidental League

LeagueInfoboxPNG.png

-With news of unspeakable horrors being perpetrated against the Mayan peoples of Central America, Yiska feels that he has no choice but to leave the war against the communist enemy in the hands of his allies and launch an all-out campaign against Mexico, taking advantage of perceived enemy unpreparedness to put an end to the Sinarquista regime and raise a revolution in favor of the old Mexican Revolutionary Party. Leaving only a small force of advisors to teach scouting tactics to the Occidental League, the remainder are pulled from Canada and the Plains battlefields as the League of Niʼ Ałníiʼgi and its All American League Allies go all-in on a campaign against the Abascal regime, which is announced to great shock in a rousing speech at Window Rock. The coming campaign is risky in multiple respects as it is not only a gamble against the Mexicans, but the advancing communists who could threaten the homeland in the very near future

-Though the League is already armed to the teeth, gunsmiths go to work cranking out thousands of new Desert Eagle rifles to cheaply arm the warriors of the All American League as well as any Mexican revolutionaries they manage to recruit along the way. These rifles are cheap and capable, the perfect riflemen’s weapon. With an abundance of 9mm parabellum rounds and some urban combat anticipated, copies of the Sten submachine gun that have made their way west are also produced from stamped metal, giving a degree of flexibility in the upcoming battles

-The war against Mexico begins in earnest with the Battle of Nogales, as Niʼ Ałníiʼgi warriors infiltrate trenches and fortifications abandoned by the Free States after peace with Mexico seemed assured. This allows them to get close and launch a surprise attack on the modest border contingent, subduing them after hours of confused Mexican resistance. Warnings are sent south to Mexico City over the telegraph, but are ignored for some time as the attack is so improbable and audacious the Jefe believes his border guards are simply jumping at shadows

-With the gates open, the All American League marches south in an assault with two major prongs. The first, under the Hopi Chief Ayawamat, heads west and secures Sonora State and the coast, putting pressure on Sinaloa and dividing the Mexican response while establishing a base of operations for the resurrected PRM in Hermosillo. Yiska himself strikes in Chihuahua State, meeting sporadic resistance from Synarchist diehards but rallying local people against their government. The strongest resistance comes in the former mining town of Parral, where a brigade of Greenshirts makes the first significant stand of the war so far but are overrun after brutal house to house fighting

-The speed of the advance over the vast spaces of Mexico is enabled by the use of large numbers of horses for all transportation needs. Equine mobility is bought up or requisitioned wherever possible, and this mobility allows the All American League to carry out such feats as taking the entirety of Baja California with a single brigade in a matter of weeks before turning it over to local anti-government authorities

-More modern forms of mobility are also employed, in particular the new “Armadillo” armored van, another improvised vehicle which adds several millimeters of protection to the sides of a civilian van as well as critical parts of the driver’s cab. Though not as consistently protected against small arms as the Kangaroo or Half-Track, the fully wheeled Armadillo is faster and cheaper, well employed against an enemy who fights across wide spaces with little artillery

-As the attack moves into its more serious phase by late summer and the enemy is met in a pitched battle for the first time, the first reinforcements from the Cherokee Nation arrive and form two brigades, one from Oklahoma and another from Appalachia. Recruiting in Oklahoma produces underwhelming results as most here are more concerned with the immediate threat to the homeland, but the Confederacy provides extensive recruiting opportunities in exchange for valuable military wares produced by the League

-More important is recruitment in Mexico and beyond as scouts are sent ahead of the All American League’s advance to proclaim the arrival of the Second Mexican Revolution and encourage locals to rise up against their local party officials. Most are incredulous at these reports, speaking instead of the “crazy red horsemen,” but change their tune as more numerous forces arrive. Local authorities change sides simply to keep their seats, but slowly and surely, tens of thousands of former PRM members and anti-government civilians begin to join the march southwards. These “New Revolutionaries” rally around Miguel Alemán Valdés, a young PRM holdout who sets up shop in Hermosillo and begins requesting further collaboration with the All American League to show that their efforts are more than just an outside invasion. His assistance will be vital as the war moves into the Mexican heartland, and the Mexican Army begins diverting its more organized armies northward

AEAAStartPNG.png

-General Arnold’s broadcasts become less and less cryptic about how he plans to retake America. Long speculated to be an anti-Japanese force, AAEA posters now appear decrying the aggressions of communism across the American West, targeting innocent Americans who would rather be left to their plowshares. With the enemy now defined, the Alaskan Expeditionary Army begins to choose its allies for what it calls a coming “Storm of Steel.” With its ideological closeness to the Federalists and Canada, these are the obvious choices, and several arms deals are drawn up

-With little manufacturing base of its own, the Expeditionaries make an arrangement with the Federalists to keep their outsized forces armed with M2 auto-carbines and amphibious M2 Medium tanks, the backbone of its small armored force. Underwater Demolition Team advisors are also provided to train the AAEA’s own units. In exchange, tankers roll out of Alaska's modest oil fields to deliver the valuable juice via Maine.With the Federalists now mostly cut off from their domestic oil supply, the tiny Alaskan force now finds itself one of the most important allies of the Wallace government in its darkest hour

-During the late spring and early summer, Canada also supports the AAEA with trucks and a few light armored vehicles. As the Expeditionaries prepare for their first offensive into the homeland proper, their most important support remains use of the railways, which constantly shuttle soldiers from Alaska to their launching-off points on the northern Great Lakes

-In working with Canadian tank manufacturers and Montreal Locomotive Works, a delegation from the AAEA reviews several Ram tank hulls, without turrets and set aside as Canada begins to copy the new Sherman tank. The turretless tanks are taken in and navalised by the AAEA as armored personnel carriers, some of the first of their kind, and gain the “Kangaroo” moniker as infantry are seen piling out the sides after arriving at the frontlines with armor protection. Further examples of the M2 Medium are also converted to Kangaroos, though these feature a hatch at the back instead

-Relations with Canada become increasingly complex as a result of the Soviet Union's entry into the war on the side of the Franco-British Union in late June. The FBU and USSR now put their energy into convincing the Federalists and United Socialist Republics to find some kind of rapprochement in hopes of defeating the Confederates together, as was originally envisioned by their non-aggression pact a year ago. As such, the Canadians will not provide any further assistance to an anti-communist offensive, and the AAEA risks becoming isolated far from home if it proceeds. Of course, bad blood remains between the Federalists and USRA, and if the deal falls through, anything goes

-Nevertheless, the Expeditionaries set a July date for the first stage of their assault, training men further in beach assaults and combined arms, with an emphasis on the individual soldier’s ability to take the initiative. Precisely where they will strike is a closely guarded secret, but a pair of small submarines are seen being shipped east by train

-As news of the coming Alaskan intervention becomes more and more widespread, Arnold is able to recruit several hundred new soldiers who defect primarily from the Opposition or cross the border into Canada from Communist-held zones, which are quickly pressed into service alongside refugees from the Confederate advances who are eager to fight any enemy of the America they used to know. These are formed into a new “Exiles Battalion” which is highly motivated, though questions about their individual reliability are consistently raised by its commanders

-This and other units finally ship off for their first limited incursion onto USRA soil at the end of July, making a covert infiltration onto a remote island somewhere on the Great Lakes by moving in unmarked ships over the course of several nights. The assault results in no casualties on either side, as the island has only a minor civilian presence, and the locals become isolated from the mainland. The small Alaskan Expeditionary Army for America has made a silent entrance into the war, and prepares to use its specialist soldiers to tip the balance
 
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Amfleet

Atomic Birb
Turns due Friday, 12/13 at noon EST!

HAVE


USRA
Confederates
League of Nialng;d
WCP
Alaska
Gulf
Free States

Need

Cascadia?
 
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Amfleet

Atomic Birb
The Presidents and National Myths

Every successor to the United States of America has some form or the other of national myth used to justify its practices, its ideology, or even its very existence. Though all except the Federalists claim a new identity separate from the old system, you might be surprised to learn that in almost all of them, past American presidents are revered in some manner. This universally involves construing their actions or statements to support the position of the State. After all, dead men can lodge no protest.

It comes as no surprise that as the last remnant of the old system, residents of the Northeastern states controlled by the Federalists revere many of the past presidents, but Franklin Delano Roosevelt still looms large over all the rest. The personal style of his leadership and idealism in the darkest hours of American history, which he maintained in the face of political pessimism, still have strong appeal and provide President Wallace with his legitimacy, as he organizes “Roosevelt Brigades” shock workers to take people off the street and build fortifications, putting the tools of national defense in their hands.

Despite their crucial political differences with the current order, the Confederates revere several American presidents that predate the first Civil War. Foremost among these is George Washington, whose equestrian likeness once again graces the national seal. The Confederate narrative on Washington presents him as a fierce defender of Americanism against British influence but otherwise apolitical, a view that fits neatly into propaganda decrying the imperialism of the British and its supposed puppet to the north. It also plays up his collaboration with noted anti-Federalist Richard Henry Lee to connect Washington’s America with the Confederacy.

In its early years, the Coalition of Free States also strongly identified with the anti-Federalists, most importantly Thomas Jefferson, whose very face had been carved into its rocks. More recently, however, Theodore Roosevelt has become the favorite muse of its politicians as the populace becomes frustrated with the going of the war under decentralized government. The era of American triumph and expansion under Roosevelt, as well as his “Rough Rider” persona have great appeal to a people that are now led by a resurgent Bull Moose Party. Their neighbors in the Commonwealth of Cascadia are similarly drawn by the era of American greatness.

The era of American imperialism also holds a great deal of influence over the people of Alaska and the many Americans who now live there after leaving American holdings in the Pacific, chiefly Hawaii and the Philippines. To them, William McKinley still embodies America’s transition to the Great Power status they still seek to reclaim.

The only successor nation not to revere any of the American presidents in any way is the West Coast Protectorate, which is on the opposite side of the continent and instead encourages people to look to the Eastern Hemisphere rather than the east coast. Nevertheless, naturalists such as John Muir are still celebrated through art and poetry.

Perhaps the most extensive of these myths is that of the United Socialist Republics of America. Though it frequently decries the brokenness of the old system and its effects on the workers, Abraham Lincoln is viewed as a shining exception, a nearly religious figure and the true forebear of American Socialism, which is officially titled Marxism-Lincolnism-Leninism. The struggle against slavery is portrayed as the proletariat of all races uniting against capitalist oppression, and the factory bosses of the decades immediately before the Second American Revolution as slavemasters in their own right. Radical Reconstruction is seen as Lincoln’s attempt to implement American Socialism for the first time, tragically opposed by capitalist forces which resulted in his assassination and the eventual Redemption Era.

This particular myth is aided by the fact that Springfield, Illinois hosts Lincoln’s massive and ornate tomb, where Communist Party officials frequently host ceremonies and pose for photos. Whether Honest Abe’s body is spinning within is an open question.



Communist Party minister posing at Lincoln's tomb, 1941
 

Sobotnik

New Member
A speech on the radio.
And now ladies and gentlemen, a speech from President Aaron Kimball.

The events of the past year have been, unfortunately, not the greatest in the history of America. As you all know, on the Fourth of July 1940, Nebraska and Kansas were invaded by the Communist forces of America under the leadership of Earl Browder, a man who was once imprisoned for refusing to become an enlisted soldier himself in the last war. What was suspected to be an easy and quick victory was frustrated by his underestimation of our desire to live freely as any man ought to under the constitution of America. We have been joined by the states of Texas, of Oklahoma and Florida, California, and even the native tribes who lost so much in the last century. All have bet on us, because they believe in our noble cause.

We do not stand alone, and the world is watching us here. There is a very good reason for that, and that is because the tyrants of this world hate nothing more than to see a free nation unconquered. Existence of such a country in itself is threatening to them. It is like a poison to them. Browder, Hitler, Stalin, these are all men who cannot sup of freedom, for it would kill them and their empires.

There are those who believe that we cannot possibly win a war against such tyrants. They possess far more arms and soldiers, and control vast swathes of territory with millions of teeming slaves yoked to machines that produce ever more horrible instruments of war. We have lost a great deal of territory, having been pushed back into the rockies by the Chicago war machine. Yet we still have reason to keep fighting with the utmost strength. In the last war (in which I fought unlike Mr Browder), the experience of the allied forces was that of years of continual disappointment and disaster, one after the other. And yet the soldiers did not despair or panic, they merely asked themselves ”How are we going to win this?” This was a question not one man could answer until at the end when rather suddenly and to my own great surprise when I was in Flanders, I saw the terrible German army collapse before me.

The Red army has seized the plains and now makes ready to battle for the rockies. Upon this battle depends the very survival of our America civilization. Upon it depends the city on the hilll, and that is why the enemy will bring his greatest might and most terrible weapons and fury to bear. Mr Browder knows that he must break us here and now or else lose the war. If we can stand up to him then soon Kansas and Nebraska will be free once again. Soon enough the struggle against tyranny will manifest itself in the rest of America and the world as people currently unfree cast off their chains and declare that they wish to be treated not as brutes, but as brothers. If we fail here, then the last flame will be extinguished and we shall plunge into a dark age made longer and darker by sciences twisted for evil ends. Let us engage the challenge, so that even when the last gleaming twilight of America is but a distant memory, the dawn of the next light will reveal what we once so proudly hailed.
 

Amfleet

Atomic Birb
Turn 6 Preview: Unity, Part 1 of 2

02:00 Hours, 21st September 1941

30th Street Station, Philadelphia




Pennsylvania Railroad troop train hit by a Confederate aerial rocket, September 1941

Lt. Col. Oliver West, United States Army, stands at the top of the grand staircase leading down to the platforms as countless Federal soldiers stream past. The station has been closed to civilians for a week, and yet the station is more crowded than ever as trains backed up one after the other offload troops. The train he is waiting for is Government Extra #307, which will deliver the freshly recruited 32nd New Haven Infantry Battalion to his command. The train is more than an hour late due to bombing up in Trenton, but now the Station Master gives him the signal and he heads downstairs.

Directing each company to their rallying point, he reviews the troops as they disembark. Few have complete uniforms, fewer still have helmets. Many wear only a blue armband with the Stars and Stripes for identification. They carry themselves loosely, as if they had come for a weekend holiday to try the cheesesteak, a symptom of the truncated training regimen. One of the platoons happens to consist of the entire Yale football team, which West chastises for tossing around the pigskin on duty. He briefly contemplates splitting them up, but someone clearly pulled strings to keep them together and he has little time to dwell on the matter.

The unit is diverse in more ways than one, not just black and white, but ranging from short Italians to several tall Russians. On more than one occasion he encounters young women posing as men to fight, a sign of just how rushed the reserve mobilization has been. He warns them to keep up the ruse, “or it’s my ass on the fire.” In any case, all seem quite enthused for the fight and ready to die for the cause. He could tell they were all tired of sitting by during the incessant bombing and shortages, and are ready to gamble their lives to put an end to this madness.

Out on the street, they are issued their weapons from crates on a horse-cart. Taking first pick as the CO, West selects an Automatic Carbine M2. Every squad is issued a BAR and an M3 Submachine Gun, a cheap metal thing the lab coats at Army Ordinance came up with. The rest are an eclectic mix of Springfields, Garands, carbines, and the occasional mortar which the troops of the 32nd greedily pick over. It quickly becomes apparent that they are several dozen weapons short, so he instructs the junior officers to choose who will get the short end of the stick before they begin the march to the front. These junior officers are also given horses for mobility as the rest of the 32nd will be on foot due to the fuel shortages, though West himself mounts up in a Jeep. In due time the battalion falls in with the rest of their brigade and heads west.

The 32nd New Haven quickly fades into the grim-faced sea of humanity flowing through the city blocks under the autumn moon and the unlit street lamps. In less than 20 miles of marching they will meet the enemy in West Chester and begin Operation Unity. A few Grant and Sherman tanks rumble by, but President Wallace’s last gambit relies on the USA’s final trump card, the millions of men who are still willing to give themselves for the future of these United States.
 
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Amfleet

Atomic Birb

Turn 6 Preview: Unity, Part 2 of 2

09:00 Hours, 29th September 1941

Dunham Township, Ohio


Commissar Nicholas Malcolm, American Liberation Army, strides confidently through rows of troops assembled on the ridgeline overlooking the Ohio River in the valley below. Before them is a People’s Colossus heavy tank, towering behind it several red posters depicting Marx, Lincoln, and Lenin. He pauses to pick up a red leaf, one of the first of an autumn that will set the valley ablaze. Climbing onto the turret of the tank, he makes a show of tucking the leaf into his breast pocket for good luck.

“Comrades!” he bellows. “It is good to see you all here today. And it will be even better to see you on the other side of that river!” The assembled troops roar with approval.

“On the other side of that river lies the den of fascism in America. On the other side of that river the capitalist war machine enslaves American workers while brave partisans have been fighting alone for their liberation. All while the bourgeois Russellites and their lackeys prosecute an imperialist war to line their pockets!” he proclaims to jeers.

“They thought we would sit idle as they seized American factories. They thought we would be too intimidated to respond while they armed the capitalist snakes in the west with the weapons that kill your comrades. They thought we would stay neutral in a global war against humanity. Are they correct?”

The men shout back a chorus of mixed ‘No’s and ‘Hell No’s.

“Then today, we will show them that the American Liberation Army bows to no one! Today we will show them the might of American Socialism!” Several IL-2 attack planes fly overhead and drop bombs on Confederate positions. Malcolm salutes them as they fly past. He motions and the men rush to pick up collapsible boats from a nearby flatbed as the thunder of artillery begins. He bellows out one last parting message:

“Death to fascism! Freedom to the people!”
 

mausedpotatos

New Member
LORE POST

West Virginia...


Lieutenant Peter Collins looked at the unfolded map from his pocket and worked at figuring out where exactly their position was. He found that the convoy was currently North of Charleston and quite nearly to the intended destination. He looked stonily at the soldiers under his command as the yellow flare of the beaming sun silhouetted their pale faces against the greenery all around them. He was perched in the passengers side of a rumbling scout car which was moving along at the front of an armored column of infantry. The soldiers all looked doggedly fatigued even though they were riding in the back of open-topped armored vehicles. Sweat slicked many foreheads and reflected the suns rays visibly. It had been a long day for the entire convoy but it was not yet through. Though the afternoon temperature had been higher at around seventy eight degrees, Collins was sure that as the sun set later on in the day the temperature would start to lazily fall and finally provide some due autumnal relief. Collins was sure that they would not falter in their pace. He turned forwards towards the vehicles in front of the scout car and immediately became once more aware of the acrid exhaust that the two trucks were belching out of their roaring exhaust pipes. He wrinkled his nose and quickly rolled the window up. He could see crate upon crate stacked in the back of the trucks peeking out from under the tarps stretched over the large trucks beds, and he knew precisely what was inside. In the second truck which was ahead of both the scout car and the first truck, Collins was aware that there were many barrels of liquid fuel lashed together.

As the scout car rounded a bend in the road, the asphalt soon became dirt. The trees had been stripped away hurriedly in the past. The dirt was still a much darker color than the soil on either side of the miles long strip of barren land and had yet to be seriously encroached upon by weeds. To either side small of the dirt white flags on meter high flagpole stakes lazily flapped in the crisp September breeze. Far off in the distance down the barren stretch of land another separate convoy was visible. A radioman leered down from the top of one of the trucks to Lieutenant Collins and quickly snapped off a salute with one hand while pressing a bulky telephone into the other ear. The telephone had wires running out of the bottom of the handset and into a backpack the man wore. "Sir," spoke the radioman, "Convoy B reports that it is in position and has received word that all other convoys are similarly in position."

Collins returned the soldiers salute, "My reply is that convoy D is in position as well."

The radioman nodded and replied, "Right away sir." He ducked back over the gate of the truck and began to speak into his handset. Collins folded his hands behind his back and watched bemusedly as Sergeant First Class Howard screamed at the top of his lungs for the 'yellow lazy mongrels of the nastiest brand' to finish removing the crates from the back of the two large trucks. Within a few minutes, this arduous task was completed. A private sprung to with a prybar and began to lever off the wooden lid of the nearest crate which was labeled as 'incendiary'. Inside were devices attached to sophisticated mechanical timers, flares, and spools of fuse wire packed into sawdust. Collins looked at Howard's grizzled face expectantly. Both of the two were well aware of the threat still crossing into the South at this moment and so no time was wasted by Howard in barking out orders to break open the rest of the boxes.

Each lid that came off had a different insignia. Anti-Personnel. Anti-Tank. Detonator. Dynamite. Soon the soldiers were picking up boxes and marching into the nearby forests to lay down the explosives. Most of what was needed had already been laid down previously when the fire line had been constructed. In the next thirty minutes the intended holes in the defense meant for allowing allied soldiers to pass through the minefields would be plugged with more mines. After that, fuel from the barrels in the back of the cargo truck would be unloaded and all of the flora would be sprayed down with fuel as the convoy returned to base.

Collins thought to himself as he worked to help Howard unload a fuel barrel from the back of the cargo truck. "Soon, the enemy would be eating humble pie." He could not help but snicker at his own joke as he worked with an intense fervor. Soon, thirty minutes was up. The men had all returned with empty boxes and fuel barrels which were thrown into the back of the cargo trucks. The trucks mechanically snarled and then roared to life. Men situated on the back held hoses which they used to continuously spray down whatever had not already been touched by fuel as the vehicles moved down the path. Convoy D began to proceed back towards home base as increasingly thick grey smoke rose from the distant tree lines receding behind them.
 
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Sobotnik

New Member
Denver, September 1941

One by one the heavy guns stopped firing. The once thunderous roar of firepower had died down, with little to accompany it besides the fading whines of aircraft engines. The war was not over, nor even the battle. The officers began shouting out to the men and they took positions once more in the trenches, bunkers, and artillery positions around Denver. The communists had come into shelling range two days ago, and after receiving some shells they countered by kobbing their own into the downtown district, with one shell exploding underneath a trolleycar and launching it over the road.

The machinery of the Red Army had continued west without stopping, with no heed for what came in their way. Although they had been firing and marching and cheering loudly to the heavens a year ago, things had since changed. Their advance slowed as they went up into the rockies to take on the biggest city of the Free States. Denver, the city on the hill.

The grand bombardment which had just ceased was part of operation ”Shoosh”, intended to silence the Red artillery so that Denver would be quiet enough for what was to follow. Instead of preparing themselves to undertake a major counteroffensive, the soldiers in their defensive positions began huddling around their radios just as everyone throughout the western states of America did. A prerecorded message began playing:

”Ladies and gentlemen, one of the greatest moments in the history of the city of Denver is about to take place. Shortly you will hear the opening bars of the symphony of Lewis Bryne, a fellow citizen of the city who produced this piece especially for us to hear. It is perhaps the most anticipated musical event of the year, and indeed the whole Red army has arrived just in time to listen to it. To that end we are playing this from loudspeakers and have ensured that the listening experience shall not be compromised. We kindly ask all listeners to refrain from quarrelling. Enjoy!”

With that, the music began to play. A neoromatic piece that called back to the previous century. Strong strings echoing the sounds of the old american west were set against the mechanical sounding trumpets that abruptly cut in. The first movement had the trumpets soon quieten down before suddenly they burst into life once more and with a multitude of other brasses and drums overwhelmed the strings and woodwinds.

The next movement saw them thundering along and gradually building speed and momentum, a tension undercut by screeching violins entering and leaving, doing so for shorter periods each time. The second movement ended with a serene flute solo. The third piece took the oboes and drew out their passion, slowly being joined by the strings and woodwinds that sang together to the end of the movement.

The final symphony then finally opened up with blazing trumpets and drums that fought with the sounds of the prior movements, their struggle continuing until they began fading and then finally gave way. The finale ended with the sounds of victory in which all instruments were called upon again to rouse the listeners. It seemed to work very well, for they all began to cheer loudly once it had finished...
 

Amfleet

Atomic Birb
TURN 6: 1 SEPTEMBER-31 DECEMBER 1941

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WORLD EVENTS

-Operation Barbarossa grinds to a halt as the Germans reach the gates of Moscow and the Russian winter comes into full swing. Soviet soldiers march from Red Square directly to the front as it is now Stalin’s turn to strike back in a limited counter-offensive that manages to slightly push back the enemy and give vital breathing room to the Red Army. The Soviet Union is in it for the long haul, and Hitler sacks several of the offensive’s planners with quick victory escaping reach

-Infighting between communists and nationalists continues as the Imperial Japanese Army capitalizes on the situation to expand into Shaanxi and Hubei province. The communists are the primary target of this offensive in Hubei, and take a significant morale blow as Mao Zedong is killed by Japanese artillery. Realizing the difficulty of the situation with Soviet aid quickly drying up, new chairman Peng Dehuai calls a new cease-fire with the Nationalists and calls a full end to the civil war on the condition of future communist participation in the nationalist political system, a coup for Chiang and Chinese unity even as the Japanese advance

-Subjects of the Emperor in Japanese-controlled Oahu enjoy a nice, calm Sunday in the Co-Prosperity sphere on December 7th

AMERICAN THEATER, WORLD WAR TWO

-In the wake of Nazi Germany’s invasion of the Soviet Union and several significant escalations at home, the wars of Europe are no longer separable from those of America. The four most powerful successors to the United States have all taken sides in the world war along a north-south divide. This struggle is of paramount consequence for the war as a whole, as command of the large population, immense natural resources, and vast spaces of North America will likely be a precondition for victory in the war being fought far across the Atlantic

-With Browder’s chief foreign ally now a direct opponent of Hitler on the battlefields of western Russia, past under-the-table sparring between the Franco-British Union and the United Socialist Republics are put aside. At a conference in Ottawa, the General Secretary signs a comprehensive agreement alongside President Wallace, foreign minister Molotov, and Lord Halifax. The full terms of the agreement are not known, only that the USRA will now join the war against the Axis and come to the aid of the beleaguered Federalists

-More surprising is the Republic of the Gulf’s direct entry to the war as it joins the Confederacy in an invasion that sees the two dividing up the islands of the Caribbean for themselves, including colonies of the Franco-British Union and Netherlands. Justifying this as an anti-colonial measure, it is an especially consequential act for the Gulf, which the Allies had hoped would maintain its state of biased neutrality for the duration of the war

NORTHEASTERN FRONT

-At the eleventh hour, the Federalists are brought back from the brink by the intervention of the United Socialist Republics as Army Group Ohio pours into across the border into West Virginia. The main assault is preceded by massed artillery, Daisy Cutter bombs, and sapper attacks that take advantage of the surprise and force several openings for crossings of the Ohio River. Border walls erected by the communists are destroyed in controlled demolitions, while the former Opposition fortifications now manned by the Confederates are subjected to concentrated attacks before being overrun by the infantry, though still at great cost as the border units fight to the death. The USRA’s contribution to Operation Unity has begun

-The Confederate campaign to destroy resistance in this tumultuous region is quickly turned on its head as Bushmen units sent to quell partisans must now themselves fight with guerilla tactics while awaiting support from the regular forces. While they are able to do this with great skill, they have the difficulty of an unsympathetic populace of union coal miners who will more often aid the enemy and betray their location, forcing them to fight on the move

-The skies above the battlefield are contested constantly, as Confederate fighters and bombers clash with the American Liberation Air Force and local air superiority shifts rapidly from battle to battle as while bombing and strafing attacks punish any ground formation that gathers on the foothill roads. On the ground, three communist field armies under the command of General Raven make a slow but determined advance with heavy tank support, though these units are used at great peril and frequently ambushed by hidden tank destroyers or anti-tank guns in an environment far different from the open plains of the west. These are relatively few once the initial border zone is cleared until greater regular forces can be brought around to respond

-Staying in the foothills and west of the Appalachians proper, the communist attack is divided into two eastward strokes. The first, composed of the First Ohio, takes a relatively short route to lift the siege of Morgantown. The Confederate First Tennessee Army are peeled off of western Pennsylvania to respond, but realize that two well-fueled Federalist mechanized corps from Pittsburgh are seizing the initiative to force an encirclement that would entrap them against the mountain range, leading Patton to order them across the mountains before the trap can be completed

-The Second and Third Ohio are meanwhile taking a more scenic route, securing the southwest flank before pushing towards Cumberland. After smashing through the border post at Parkersburg with a heavy air and artillery assault, this force encounters sporadic resistance and countless land mines on the foothill roads. After weeks of advancing, they finally encounter the First Tennessee at the Battle of the Monongahela Forest and cut off its eastward retreat. Both sides take heavy casualties as the Confederate Air Force desperately attempts to relieve and resupply their ground forces in time for reinforcements to arrive and break the encirclement, but those that arrive are too little, too late as vengeful reds slaughter most of the Confederate force wholesale, the bodies of soldiers from both sides littering the forest floor or found in sniper nests far above

-To the northeast, the Federalist portion of Operation Unity employs a massed infantry-centric assault that musters at least a million and a half men in a no-holds-barred assault, rushing reserves to the front to try and stem the avalanche and send the Confederates on the defensive. The troops are inexperienced and poorly equipped against well-armed and experienced enemies, but the Confederates are by this point exhausted from the lengthy campaign and supply lines are stretched compared to the Federalists, who are fighting at the very outskirts of their population and industrial centers. This combined with their ability to spend hideous amounts of human lives on the offensive allows the Federalists to push the lines back in New York and Pennsylvania, loosening the Confederate grip and leaving the armies furthest north dangerously overextended

-On the coast, Confederate paratroopers make their first significant jump of the war, surprising and nearly destroying two divisions on the Delmarva peninsula and threatening to cut off Baltimore once again, whilst controlling even more of the eastern seaboard. In response, Royal Marines land in Wilmington, Delaware to liberate the city and keep a corridor open, the first major amphibious operation on this front

PLAINS FRONT

-The northern reaches of Gulf territory once again come alive with fighting as the newest red offensive is fully directed at the Gulf States and Confederacy with the objective of knocking them out of the war. ALA war planners have been long seeking to use a surprise attack through Confederate territory to outflank the Alamo Line from the east, and no longer held back by political concerns, they commit up to two million men to Operation Heartpiercer, the largest single assault of the war to date

-Once again, prepared Confederate defenses in Texarkana are hammered by artillery and airstrikes before being overwhelmed by massed infantry attacks. Once the initial lines are overcome, the eastern force is split into two army groups, with Army Group Missouri pushing straight south in an attempt to split the enemy along the Mississippi and Army Group Iowa intended to make a hook westwards in a beeline towards the Dallas/Fort Worth area

-Much to the chagrin of the ALA brass, this attack is anticipated by both the Gulf and Confederates, who have watched the reds inch closer to joining the World War after the entry of the Soviets, and have scrambled to try and plug gaps as tensions heated and enemy buildup became apparent. The fast mechanized units of the Gulf Expeditionary Force are reallocated to home defense, proving vital in stemming the enemy advance with constant "Hell on Wheels" rolling attacks. The Confederates focus on an ad hoc defense in depth, creating "Burn Lines" of National Guard units and laying minefields in the path of likely enemy routes. This is referred to as Operation Shoofly, and contains provisions that see slaves marched off plantations at gunpoint away from their would-be liberators. Many free blacks are also swept up, though from both groups thousands of escapees manage to use the chaos to break for the reds who welcome them with open arms

-All this is largely a distraction; as the real attack is to come from the northwest. After delayed moves into southern Colorado, the highly mechanized Army Group Michigan under General Edward Carter Jr. pushes to close the vise around the Alamo Line, capturing Amarillo and the Texas Panhandle. They do not quite achieve encirclement of Oklahoma City as a result of logistical delays and purported Trotskyist sabotage, but the Gulf's home front situation begins to look dire even as it begins new adventures abroad

-In fact, the home front continues to be a struggle for all involved. While the balance of agricultural land has gone to the communists, the harvest has struggled to meet goals to feed its massive population, much of which is fully committed to other war related work, leading to tightened rations. Food can be traded with the Canadians, but most of its grain is going to the desperate Federalists. In the Confederacy, slaves help to address the labor issue, but the stores of food from last year are being depleted as the war only continues to grow. Dependence on trade partners in the Americas is growing, but the Gulf's entry into the war now means these shipments are subject to Union Navy raiding

-The newly reformed Free States of America, by comparison, weathers this storm well, focusing on building its industry and its defensible borders while limiting the war to the skies as the communists refocus their efforts to the Confederacy and Gulf Republic in line with Allied war aims. Probing attacks and bombing raids, now including the new and terrifying Cruise Missile Version 1 “Maybug”, continue to harass the enemy and dampen communist efforts to extract oil from their newly conquered territories, while sending a reminder to the red civilians that their leaders cannot completely protect them. Though their immediate tactical situation is improving, the Free States’ political situation is becoming increasingly difficult, as it seems forced to choose between its allies of necessity and the principles for which it was founded


CENTRAL AMERICAN FRONT

-Sponsorship of Mexico’s expansionist policies has led to a public relations disaster for the Gulf as Synarchist Greenshirt paramilitaries continue massed executions and forced labor of indigenous Mayan peoples in the restive south. With opinions on the world stage quickly turning against the Mexican State and its Gulf ally, Allred quickly turns coat and accuses the Jefe of deceitfully hiding their atrocities and intentions, ordering Gulf forces to change sides in the conflict. Few back home quite buy into claims of unawareness, but it is clear that with Mexico in turmoil, the Synarchists have outlived their usefulness

-In reversing their position, Gulf emissaries now try to make things up with the democratic PRM under Provisional President Valdes. Despite the situation to the north, the Mustang tanks of the Gulf 4th Mechanized Corps under Major General Roderick R. Allen roll south to assist the AAL and Provisional Mexican Republic in taking Monterrey and stabilize the southern border of Texas. The combined force accomplishes their task within a matter of weeks as the Synarchists still have little means to counter tanks. Politically, matters are much more complicated. While the natives of the AAL are greeted as liberators, the Gulf soldiers are met with jeers and occasionally stone projectiles. The left-of-center PRM has little taste for the Gulf’s relationship with the Confederacy and views its past actions as a cause for great suspicion, and turns down offers of a collective security treaty and economic aid, accepting only a normalization of relations and trade once the conflict has ended and uninvited foreign soldiers leave Mexican soil

-The main show in what has in many ways become a civil war is further west, where Mexican revolutionaries and AAL fighters continue to slog south and the scale of the battle snowballs as they gain recruits but encounter larger and more organized Synarchist forces. These are most troublesome in the rural parts of western Mexico, where the Jefe’s base of support lies. This is embodied by a bloody street fight in Durango, where the natives take many scalps at the cost of hundreds of their own. Much the same can be said for the rest of the drive south at this point. The advance is nearly out of steam as it reaches the ultimate objective at Guadalajara, where it expects it will have to fight a bloody siege. They are surprised to instead find the city already under siege, the urban residents and police having defected to the side of the PRM. Arriving behind the enemy assault, Provisional Republic and AAL forces are able to relieve the siege and secure a major waypoint on the road to Mexico City

-Much further south, the conflict that began this war continues to rage but shift significantly in favor of the PDP, as Synarchist forces peel off unit after unit from operations on this front to go north. Mayan self-defense forces allied to the PDP begin to organize themselves more effectively and begin to mimic the insurgent tactics the League of Niʼ Ałníiʼgi has been using throughout its wars. Talk of a fully autonomous “Mayan People’s Nation” is popular in Yucatan and Quintana Roo. The nations of the Pacto Defensivo del Pueblo further take the step of joining the Allies to gain support from British Honduras, which has become a haven for surviving Franco-British troops fleeing the Axis offensive in the Carribean to a more tenable land position

BATTLE OF THE ATLANTIC

-A new phase of confrontation begins in the nations of the Carribean, so far shielded from the worst of the conflict but sweltering in poverty. Not long after the appearance of Floridian mercenaries and several ex-Gulf warships in the employ of Dominican strongman Rafael Trujillo, a fire at the Dominican Embassy in Port-au-Prince leads to a declaration of war. The Haitian capital is quickly subdued by a warship bombardment to which it has no practical counter, the Lescot regime capitulating shortly afterwards. Ethnic tensions between the occupiers and locals produces a substantial resistance movement that continues to embroil Trujillo’s forces, with Dominican officers often found hacked to death by machetes in the rural towns, Voodoo symbols carved into their bodies

-This supposedly local conflict quickly evolves into a pretext for greater involvement by both the Gulf and Confederacy in Carribean affairs, as they both declare that imperialist influence by the Franco-British Union and the Netherlands will no longer be tolerated. This effectively eliminates any semblance of neutrality in the World War still retained by the Gulf States, and the remaining Allied powers declare war. This now pits the two largest navies of North America against the largest navy in the world, a sure sign of a coming rematch on the high seas

-The Gulf strikes first, sending waves of landing craft to Grand Bahama to touch off an “island hopping” and eliminate this Franco-British outpost right off the shores of Florida. Achieving tactical surprise, the Gulf commerce raider Cormorant manages to close in on Freeport and unleash a broadside on HMAS Sydney, sinking her with all hands despite also being sunk herself in the process. The battle for Nassau proves much more costly as the primarily British forces fight against the odds to buy time for an evacuation force. They are aided by the French aviso La Grandière, which intentionally beaches itself in Clifton Bay to fight a last stand with her heavy guns before eventually being shredded by the RGN Texas. Nevertheless, the Lone Star flies over Government House after several days of fighting

-Allred next sets his sights on Jamaica and the independent Federalist ally of Puerto Rico. While this operation gets underway, the Confederates use carrier aircraft and bombers based in Cuba and the Dominican Republic to strike the islands as well as several islands of the Lesser Antilles. The initial landing on Puerto Rico meets no opposition as the tiny republic commands its forces to go underground and the government absconds to St. Croix, only to be captured later on. After days of occupation, the Gulf quickly finds itself fighting the Ejército Local resistance movement of civilians and trained fighters. Frustrated with the level of resistance so far, Kingston is simply bombarded into submission by the super-dreadnoughts Pensacola and Galveston

-In the meantime, the Confederates have the relatively easy task of taking the lesser Antilles. With the remnants of the Dutch Navy now under the command of the Union Admiralty and ordered to hold back for the decisive battle, most residents of the Netherlands Antilles flee to Suriname, the British doing much the same at the mere sight of a Confederate battleship after news of the shelling of Kingston arrives. Interestingly, former King Edward VIII becomes a Confederate captive during this venture after being found in a villa on Grenada

-Despite overwhelming success, reports passed from the Abwehr indicate that the battle for the Carribean is yet to be decided as a large Franco-British fleet organizes itself with the intention of eliminating the Confederate and Gulf Navies once and for all. The Confederate Admiralty had expected to fight this action before the end of the year, but it seems the Union Navy is waiting on something which is yet to be seen

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-The entry of the Soviet Union into the world war has turned the many political considerations of the CPUSA on their head. In keeping with the notion of global communist solidarity, Browder follows Stalin by turning over a new leaf with the imperialist Franco-British Union and the “pre-revolutionary” order in the American east, shifting his primary focus to the battle against the fascist Confederacy and its Gulf ally. At a conference in Ottawa, the General Secretary signs a comprehensive agreement alongside President Wallace, foreign minister Molotov, and Lord Halifax. The full terms of the agreement are not known, only that the USRA will now join the war against the Axis and come to the aid of the beleaguered Federalists

-This does not stop the public at home and abroad from speculating as to what else might be contained within this agreement. One thing that is clear is that the long-frozen trade in goods between the USRA, Federalists, and Canada has been reopened, as shares in Canadian oil and rare materials from the vast Franco-British Empire give the war economy a shot in the arm. Technology exchanges also resume in earnest, as the new allies evaluate each other’s designs. Many observers expect that some backdoor dealing on the future of the postwar Confederacy and Gulf may be in the works, assuming victory is achieved

-The new agreement means that the USRA is now once again following directly in line with its communist brothers in the Soviet Union. Between this and the beginning of the long-sought war with the fascists, Browder now has the political capital needed to exercise “The Great Repression” and bury the factionalism that has plagued the Party. Two members of the Presidium who are known Trotsky sympathizers are demoted and moved to the new North Dakotan People’s Republics as “political consultants.” Trotsky himself is moved from house arrest to prison, with police symbolically taking sledgehammers to his printing press. Thousands of Trotsky supporters in several urban areas hold illegal demonstrations for which they are rounded up and shot for counter-revolutionary activity. In the rural areas of Illinois and Wisconsin, still more Trotsky supporters begin an open revolt. This is quickly crushed by police and civil defence forces, but survivors go underground and continue to wage sporadic attacks. Responding to Party concerns, Browder acknowledges the difficulty of his decision and insists this will soon pass as the public focuses on the popular war against fascism

-The other great struggle on the home front at this time is a required tightening of rations. While the balance of agricultural land has gone to the communists, the harvest has struggled to meet goals to feed its massive population, as most workers who would do so are under arms or fully committed to other war related work. Food can be traded with the Canadians, but most of its grain is going to the desperate Federalists. Public dissatisfaction is largely contained due to fanaticism for the fight against fascism, but even the most dogmatic party members hint at a need for greater agricultural action

-Much of this is a result of emergency orders for a million and a half men from the reserves to cover defenses along the Rocky Mountains. These orders greatly stretch the manpower of the USRA, but the Party is confident that by doing so, it will leverage its massive human resources to bring about victory and ensure that the Free States have little chance of mounting a counter-offensive while attention shifts from the west to the south

-Fearing the Confederates will strike first, more extensive measures are taken along the already heavily-fortified border in Kentucky. Though limited movements between the territory of the USRA and the Opposition were once allowed for practical reasons, these have long since ended with the Confederate takeover. Bridges, tunnels, and passes are rigged for demolition. While the Confederates do not strike on home soil as they are still reeling from the tactical surprise of the offensive in the east, the preparations will certainly buy the ALA time to respond if a counteroffensive does come in this region

-Not all portions of the red offensive achieve the same tactical surprise, and the eastern portion of Operation Heartpiercer faces scorched earth tactics on a massive scale as Confederate forces are slowly pushed back in Arkansas. The graycoats and their Gulf allies have completely anticipated an attack here, and have planned their defenses accordingly, inflicting significant casualties for every country mile seized. True to its name, one of the initiatives of the American Liberation Army in this assault was to liberate as many slaves from these territories as they went as a source of new manpower and recruitment to the cause. However, the Confederacy has clearly made contingencies for this as well, as its Marshalls forcibly march tens of thousands of slaves at gunpoint to the south and east, netting the reds only a few thousand that manage to break loose in the chaos. Thousands more die during the marches, either collapsing due to their maltreatment or shot for perceived intransigence. Hellish scenes are reported as forested areas and plantations are burned in the wake of these death marches

-One of the motivations for these mass burnings is mass defoliation, intended to make the reds more exposed to aerial attack as they advance. Having dealt with Confederate bushmen in the trees of West Virginia, the ALA has become keenly aware of the value of forest cover through these experiences. As such, the American Liberation Air Force develops another new type of bomb to add to its arsenal of thermobaric and conventional explosives. Having already completed revolutionary research in synthetic rubbers, Republic Developmental Institute designers in Chicago come up with a rubber compound that becomes incredibly sticky when mixed with gasoline. This “Napalm” can not only spread itself from one bomb over a large area to burn, but will stick and persist far longer than plain gasoline, and is used to hideous effect in the late stages of the Battle of the Monongahela Forest

-Despite its advance being anticipated in eastern Oklahoma, Operation Heartpiercer still manages to pull off a major advance on the western flank, bringing it into Texas proper for the first time. Exploiting the Free States pullback to the more defensible mountain ranges, armored divisions break across the dry Canadian River and seize Amarillo before Gulf units can be reallocated to respond and create new burn lines, after which the advance slows somewhat. By Christmas, the reds have the fortress of Oklahoma City nearly surrounded, save for a corridor tenuously held open by Gulf tanks

-Rumors of an imminent incursion by Alaskan forces persist to the point of several divisions being put into action along the Great Lakes to counter any such initiative while also seeking out Trotskyist supporters. Several members of The Sorrows, the Free States raiding force, are captured and executed along with the Trotskyists, but the Alaskans are nowhere to be found. On rural Washington Island, a purge of the Trotskyists reveals hundreds of articles of suspicious waste, such as ammunition boxes, that are believed to be left by a small Alaskan force. Locals insist they were forced to cooperate with the Alaskans, but they have since cleared out
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-What was intended to be a mopping-up of the Federalists has turned into a desperate fight for the Confederacy as the Federalists and Franco-British Union shockingly reverse their policy on the communists in America and Europe as a result of the Nazi invasion of the USSR. The Confederates find themselves not only directly tied into the conflict to the west, but facing both of the two most populous nations of America at once

-Bushmen operating in the restive hills of West Virginia quickly find themselves on the back foot as Confederate defenses on the Ohio River Valley are paved over by waves of massed artillery and bombing before being borne down upon by three communist field armies under their most veteran leadership, as well as the few remaining Federalist mechanized divisions able to push south from the Pennsylvania oil fields. A scratch field army peeled off from the fight in the north attempts to halt this advance but finds itself surrounded and fights to the death, inflicting huge casualties and setting the forest ablaze, but ultimately being destroyed under the sheer numbers of enemy

-On the way out, the Bushmen give one last middle finger to the rebels who have fought them for months and greatly undermined their defense against the red advance. Fake Patriot Cookbooks are distributed to the masses via air drops or simply left in mailboxes, ostensibly giving the recipe to a powerful crystalline explosive. The user simply mixes [REDACTED] and [REDACTED] and blows into the mixture with a straw. Those who fall for this find themselves inhaling toxic mustard gas. Another faulty design for murder-slinkies simply springs at its creator as he or she attempts to calibrate the spring

-A more organized retreat must ultimately be called in New York as well, as several million Federal troops carry out a counteroffensive that utilizes their sheer weight of numbers to force the Confederates back on a significant scale for the first time, though their casualties number nearly half a million in the effort. Many of the Federal reservists are seen armed with the M3 submachine gun, a hideous and inaccurate but effective gun meant to overcome the increasing difficulty in supplying their forces

-Many of the casualties in the Federalist advance are the result of rather treacherous activities carried out by the Confederates, who have no qualms about using the huge numbers of captured Federalist uniforms in their possession to send soldiers behind the lines and wreak havoc. Operation Cornflower is undoubtedly a war crime, but anything goes in a war where hardly any of the factions recognize the other as a legitimate government and all leaders know they will hang for treason if captured either way

-Knowing that he will likely not be able to replicate the intelligence coup of capturing the entire Federalist battle plan yet again, Russell orders a redoubling of code breaking efforts to try and intercept enemy communications through more conventional means. Though little success can be found without computing machines to rival those of the Federalists, lack of discipline among the Federal reservists still allows fake orders drafted by the Confederates to be circulated among low-level officers on several occasions

-As their joint invasion of the Carribean is undoubtedly going to trigger a greater response from the massive Union Navy and its Federalist ally, the Gulf and Confederacy collaborate more closely than ever to build ships and prepare for the onslaught. Two new escort carriers of the John Paul Jones class, join the three fleet carriers and a revitalized force of heavy cruisers and battleships to secure the Carribean gains against retaliation. Intelligence reports that this retaliation will indeed come soon, setting the stage for another decisive battle for the Atlantic

-On the coast, Confederate paratroopers make their first significant jump of the war, surprising and nearly destroying two divisions on the Delmarva peninsula and threatening to cut off Baltimore once again, whilst controlling even more of the eastern seaboard. This attack is preceded by a massive bombing campaign for this small strip of land, which makes the jump itself more of a mopping-up operation. In response, Royal Marines land in Wilmington, Delaware to liberate the city and keep a corridor open, the first major amphibious operation on this front

-One major lesson of the Siege of Baltimore and continued counter-insurgent campaign across Appalachia has been the need for more mobile firepower against fortifications and buildings. With nothing but ancient siege howitzers for this task, a new weapon is devised from the ground up, looking to rocketry after the success of the Theimer M01. A massive 8 inch rocket launcher is fitted into a casemate atop the chassis of a ubiquitous Panzer IV, with exhaust routed out the front of the gun. The “Grouch” is a whole new breed of heavily armored vehicle, classed as an assault mortar, and can operate in tight urban environments, though it is primarily designed for offensive operations due to the several minutes it needs to reload after each devastating rocket it fired

-Ever since the introduction of railways, the South has lagged far behind the northeast in railway mileage and technology, a major factor in its defeat in the last civil war. Having made the first significant expansions to the railway network since the second dissolution of the union, the Confederacy now seeks a modern beast of burden to ply the rails. In the basement of Washington Union Station, several Pennsylvania Railroad GG-1 electric locomotives are studied extensively and eventually hauled south as Southern Railway decides to invest in electrification of its link with the Gulf States, greatly improving speed and efficiency of the route. So long as it can be kept out of enemy hands, that is
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-No longer is the Republic of the Gulf an observer in the World War. With the communists joining the Allies and the invasion of the Franco-British and Dutch Carribean, Allred’s government now finds itself firmly in the New Order declared by Hitler’s Axis. Defense of the fatherland from the Bolshevik horde and evicting the European powers from its realm are now the business of the day as the war enters one of the most decisive phases for the Gulf

-In the defense of Oklahoma, the Gulf finds itself bearing the brunt of the communist assault as millions of hostile troops, no longer constrained by their neutrality against the Confederacy, surge through Texarkana into eastern Oklahoma like a tornado of steel. Having observed the rapid decline in USRA-Confederate relations since Operation Barbarossa, Allred realizes that the value of the Alamo Line as a bulwark against communism has declined rapidly and quickly withdraws most of his armor to cover this gap, undeterred by red feints against the line itself. Here they are able to greatly slow the communist attack with the assistance of the Confederacy’s own contingency plans in this area as the tanks fight in a burning landscape as dry forests are set alight. For a time, it appears that the attack will be contained beyond Gulf soil in the Confederate parts of Oklahoma as inexperienced red reservists take huge casualties against massively outnumbered Gulf units

-It all seems to come undone as the reds now unleash their secondary offensive, including most of their tank units and experienced troops from the west instead. The first major Texan city to be lost in the war to date is Amarillo, where a scratch defense is swiftly overcome by the massed tank formations before troops can be allocated to its defense. The reformed Gulf Armored Corps now finds itself struggling to keep a tightening vise from closing as both sides of the enemy offensive bear down on Oklahoma City. By the end of the year, the only open route into the fortress city is Route 77, where supplies and reinforcements face a gauntlet of long-range artillery and aerial strafing to relieve the defence as the dark clouds of burning oil wells often turn day to night

-The direction of troops between the defense of Confederate and Gulf territory is aided by a new joint Signal Corps. Sharing in the communication advances of the Confederacy, advanced two-way radios prove vital to battlefield efforts but potentially vulnerable to interception. Jointly-used cryptography and codebooks ensure interoperability of the two forces as the chaos of battle often means joint formations between the two nations

-Equally vital to the defense is the increased mechanization of Gulf forces. Often travelling across plains where proper roads may not be available or where enemy fire is sporadic, the half-track becomes an important focus as it offers good protection and towing capacity in combat situations. Automotive executives captured from the reds prove vital in the mechanization initiative, increasing factory output of these machines as well as more common trucks and tanks, which form the backbone of the defense keeping Route 77 open

-Stories of treason by refugees swirl on the home front as a wave of assassinations against Gulf army officers and soldiers rages behind the frontlines. The Gulf takes the most extreme measures of retaliation, directing most of its fury at former Opposition refugees, their names and places of dwelling all well accounted. Former Opposition men are dragged out and shot at night, often with their families as witness before these families are rounded up and shipped in trucks to “internment camps” in remote locations of Florida

-Despite the raucous situation in the defense of the homeland, Allred still spares significant resources for enforcing the Gulf’s foreign policy, planning long-term out of his confidence in the final victory. A major policy reversal on Mexico is first on the table as he tries to save face before his more important allies, the All American League. The Gulf quickly changes sides in this war, knowing that while a friendly Mexico will be difficult to achieve, a weakened and harmless Mexico is essentially a done deal. The 4th Mechanized roll south to assist the natives in their campaign, making short work of the campaign to take Monterrey before being loaded onto trains and shipped back north to defend Oklahoma City

-A far more drastic measure is the campaign to take the Carribean. Both Allred and Russell base this campaign on fears by military planner Lyndon B. Johnson that significant Franco-British holdings there are a major threat to their flanks. Under the Johnson doctrine, all nations not of the Americas are to be expelled from the Americas outright, putting the Gulf plainly in the Axis field and setting up a lengthy island-hopping campaign by Gulf and Confederate marines

-This campaign begins by proxy as Dominican strongman Rafael Trujillo is unleashed and given advisory support to take Haiti and gain lordship over the entirety of Hispaniola. This leads to a short and brutal campaign as the technologically superior Dominicans roll through the country and massacre any resistance. They will still be quite busy as a voodoo-based insurgency rages in the rural areas, with the machete being the main tool of this trade

-From there, the Gulf and Confederacy act more directly, launching an island-hopping campaign between the many tiny colonies of the Franco-British Union, encountering heavier than expected resistance as the largely black and hispanic populations have been told many stories by their current colonial masters of what to expect, and would much rather keep the old boss. The independent island of Puerto Rico, aligned with the Federalists but technically not subject to the Johnson Doctrine, puts up the fiercest resistance of all, as the Gulf Marines are allowed ashore with ease and then subjected to a hurricane of resistance in the remote hills of the island. Disappointed with the cost in casualties that could be used to defend the homeland, Gulf warships now take to simply bombarding the smaller island capitals into submission, and often the mere threat of this is able to force the enemy to surrender

-Much of this is done in the name of drawing out the Union and Federalist Navies for the purpose of a decisive battle that could see them crushed once and for all. However, aside from a few warships such as the HMAS Sydney and a few destroyers and submarines, not much is encountered. It is feared that the Union Navy is holding out to deploy some sort of ace card, such as a new class of warship

-The minor skirmishes and shore bombardments do provide ample opportunity to test the Gulf’s latest technical innovation, one that is an ace card in and of itself, the Mark II Fire Director. This fully radar-based system uses the latest computers available to the southern states to provide trigonometric firing solutions at a rapid pace. Its prowess shines greatest against aircraft, as Gulf destroyers pair the systems with their 5-inch guns to take down several attacks by Bristol Blenheims based at Nassau

-With the Carribean largely secured by the Gulf and its Carribean allies, Allred finally shifts his attention back to the home front. Even as the battles in the sea are still ongoing, he hosts a conference in Havana to form a Gulf-Carribean collective, which is joined by Cuba, the Dominican Republic, and Panama as they formalize their alliance on the basis of anti-imperialism and anti-communism. This quickly turns to Allred asking for military assistance from these allies to repay his naval assistance to them, a request received rather nervously by the heads of state as the Dominicans deal with continued insurgency and Panama sees the left-wing PDP’s reversing fortunes as cause for alarm. Batista, on the other hand, is rather enthusiastic about crushing communism and volunteers what Gulf propaganda calls “The Cuban Division” to fight for the security of Texas
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-News of the USRA’s alliance with the remainder of the Allied Powers is met with great despair as the Free States of America finds itself isolated from its closest ideological companions. Though this leads to an increase in defeatism for a time, the complete absence of an offensive by the reds against the Free States for the remainder of the year imparts hope that perhaps Browder has bored of fighting them in favor of the more popular war against fascism. Many hope this is the beginning of an extended reprieve from the brunt of the enemy forces. Nevertheless, both sides continue to trade bombs as Free States aircraft attack communist supply lines and the ALAF responds by chipping away at fortifications in the Rocky Mountains

-Newly elected President Aaron Kimball of Nevada takes advantage of the relative calm to begin enacting his vision for the Bull Moose Party’s version of America. Secretary of Banks Elias Drudge releases the radical “Drudge Report”, which takes significant steps to increase the scale of government welfare and involvement in society far beyond what the libertarian government originally designed. School children receive free milk and school meals to aid their growth and development. Most controversially, collaboration between the union shop and factory bosses on benefits is encouraged, a move which helps to eliminate strike and improve productivity slightly, while driving some of the most hardcore libertarians across the border to Cascadia

- Realizing that the vast lands of the Free States have a tiny population in comparison to its neighbors, a conscious effort to increase the birth rate is put forward. Based on ideas from the thousands of Finnish migrants, expectant mothers are sent a “Maternity Package” which can be used as a crib and contains nappies, formula, and other infant essentials

-Tying these reforms together, and with the state governments in hand under the single banner of the Bull Moose Party, the Coalition of the Free States is officially rebranded as the Free States of America, news that is remarked upon dryly in areas still under Federal control

-With the war now largely up against the Rockies, the only area that sees any movement in the war of attrition is North Dakota, where the fall sees probing attacks launched by the Free States against the now defensively-postured communists. Not designed to change the lines of battle in any significant way, these attacks instead keep the reds alert and exhausted, sometimes being as simple as a single sniper taking potshots at an enemy command post

-More significant is the campaign in the air, Operation Dehousing. Continued from the summer, this new phase introduces an awe-inspiring new weapon, the Cruise Missile Version 1. This autonomous aircraft uses the pulsejet engine invented by the Gulf in conjunction with a basic gyroscope and a carefully measured amount of fuel to guide the missile to a target within a 175 mile range and plunge a 1,500 pound bomb which airbursts via proximity fuze. Hundreds are produced, and while one of the most unreliable weapons in the Free States arsenal, they are impossible to intercept and devastating when they strike their targets. Dubbed the “Maybug” due to its loud buzzing noise while in flight, they kill hundreds in occupied cities such as Fargo and Wichita

-With fewer aircraft committed to this front by the communists, the campaign as a whole focuses on bombing raids against airfields to force air superiority and open corridors for raids on industry. With this largely accomplished, partially escorted raids are carried out against major industrial targets. From bases in North Dakota, B-24s are able to raze Minneapolis, Duluth, Des Moines, and Kansas City in the daytime. At night, the bombers strike Chicago and as far west as Indiannapolis. Though effective, these raids are incredibly hazardous due to communist radar capabilities, and the furthest raids consume more bombers from shootdowns or crashes than can be built with the current capacity of the Free States aviation industry

-The missiles and bombers are aided significantly by The Sorrows, the ever-persisting insurgents of Joshua Graham. In addition to sending smuggled messages about bomb targets and Battle Damage Assessments from their safehouses, the insurgents go so far as to carry out a sort of hearts-and-minds campaign deep in enemy territory. Food destined for military rations factories is often hijacked by The Sorrows after derailing trains or holding up trucks on the highway. Seizing a bit for their own sustenance, the remainder is given out to any members of the populace who will risk being seen taking it, which is not hard to do in the rural areas. On rare occasion they even manage to tar and feather members of the civilian police who they kill, melting away before backup can arrive. Despite these small successes, they are dwindling in numbers from the length of their campaign and bounties on their heads

-The Combination Record Analyst imported from the Federalists a year ago is produced in significant numbers for use in factory management and government accounting. An electrician at the Phoenix manufacturing plant where these bulky devices are made finds that the most time and space consuming aspect of these machines is their point-to-point circuitry. He proposes instead pre-printing these circuits on ceramic boards using conductive materials. The result is a much smaller and cheaper version, surely a boon to all the various aspects of the war effort that require effective use of gathered data

-A less nuanced technological advance comes as Moose Armories of Cheyenne successfully mates the .30 short cartridge with a revised BAR M1940. Their “BAR-42” is much more controllable than the battle rifles that have preceded it and sticks to existing designs for many of its parts or simply scales them down. Much more portable to the average soldier than even some bolt-action rifles, this is a truly revolutionary design and the cream of the crop in infantry weapons, as is demonstrated during probing attacks taking place not far from the Cheyenne workshop itself
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-For the interests of the West Coast Protectorate, the shift of the war eastward presents a development that is equal parts convenient and possibly problematic. President Taylor is now able to proclaim to his nation that the fatherland is safer than it was at the start of the year, safe behind the bulwark of the Rockies and with the reds taking on more and larger opponents. On the other hand, this means his nation is now a co-belligerent of the Axis, sending Japanese machines to war against nations that maintain neutral relations with Japan, something that must be explained away with mention of the Protectorate’s total independence from Japan, at least on paper

-Hoping to underscore this and appease the Japanese, Taylor makes a journey of several months across the Pacific to the other major nations of the Pacific Co-Prosperity Sphere. He comes bearing gifts, namely the advanced Grizzly medium tank. Several of these are doled out to the Siamese and the dual Chinese regimes under Wang Jingwei and Puyi. More importantly, they are cautiously granted to both the Imperial Japanese Army and Navy to avoid the appearance of favoritism

-With the war eating up resources, President Taylor takes the opportunity to negotiate several trade deals, in particular with Manchukuo and Siam. In exchange for light industrial aid, valuable morphine is offered up by Puyi, while Siam trades natural rubber from seized French plantations for gold bonds. Though the most distant part of the Co-Prosperity sphere, Karufornia has much to offer to its partners, and so long as Japanese toes are not stepped on, it can continue to diversify its portfolio of natural resources

-In the absence of the President, the Public Order Agency uses this stable period to draw the public’s attention to what it considers to be the activities of the model citizen, participation in the arts and sciences. The latter is emphasized with particular zeal, with none other than the great Nikola Tesla dragged out for a televised lecture on electricity. Many gather to watch his presentation, but Tesla is essentially senile and spends most of his time ranting about blasting communist planes out of the sky with a death ray before he is quietly escorted off stage and replaced with a more conventional talk about atomic theory by one Mr. Oppenheimer

-Diversions and foreign affairs aside, the war to the east continues for the men of the WCP and their allies fighting in the field. Attempting to be an arsenal for these allies, tanks and artillery are shipped to foes of the communists, though the Confederates are for the moment absent from this list until Taylor can return to define their relationship in the conflict. The Type 99 machine gun, complete with its bayonet, becomes a focal point of arming its own forces, as the Californian expeditions are highly mobile and essentially brought wherever the enemy is in the absence of an immediate threat to the fatherland

-The prolific A6M is also distributed in great numbers as licensed production ramps up. Though well-armed and maneuverable, the unarmored Rei-sen begins to show its age against the communist Thunderflash and MiG-3. Still, they are capable in ground-attack and patrol bombing roles, taking this weight off of other forces in the area

-Arms are also distributed in great numbers to Yiska’s forces fighting the fascist Synarchists to the south, throwing a bone to neighbor that is known to fight with great ferocity and building ties with the budding Provisional Republic. Most of these are machines that have been phased out by the WCP but still greatly outclass anything brought to bear by the Mexicans, and these arms are a game changer for the All American League in its determined assault. Tanks are painted to resemble various predators of the desert by the indigenious soldiers of the AAL for operation in an environment where psychological warfare does more damage than camouflage, with eagles and coyotes among the creatures adorning their sides

-Having observed the success of the Free States forces in the field after desegregation, commanders of the Protectorate Army decide to follow their lead and integrate their forces. Though the Japanese observers view blacks as some of the lowest of the low, the brass are still able to set their own rules for this, and it once again presents a chance to show the independence of WCP policy. This decision is one of many that are targeted at ending the aristocratic hierarchy the Protectorate’s military was more or less founded upon and encourage merit-based order as more and more young officers are able to distinguish themselves in the field. Of course, experience is still not the only dimension, as political reliability still goes a long way in a satellite nation
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-What began as a rather brazen incursion into Mexico by an enraged chieftain has now escalated into a full-blown civil war. With assistance from the AAL and surprisingly the Gulf, the AAL is able to engineer a popular uprising against the Synarchist government over much of the north through a training program and direct assistance that continues to preoccupy most of the League of Niʼ Ałníiʼgi’s small but potent force

-As the Valdes government in the north continues to grow and strength and organize, the AAL throws its full weight behind his new Provisional Mexican Republic, which aims to restore the center-left government that not long ago was ascendant. Though relations with this government are very good for the League and the AAL, Yiska’s longtime Gulf ally finds itself having icy relations with the provisional government, and he spends many a long night worrying if these tensions may have an impact on the League’s efforts in the near future

-In western Mexico, where local revolutionaries and AAL fighters continue to slog south, the scale of the battle snowballs as they continue to gain recruits but encounter larger and more organized Synarchist forces. These are most troublesome in the rural parts of western Mexico, where the Jefe’s base of support lies. This is embodied by a bloody street fight in Durango, where the natives take many scalps at the cost of hundreds of their own. Much the same can be said for the rest of the drive south at this point. The advance is nearly out of steam as it reaches the ultimate objective at Guadalajara, where it expects it will have to fight a bloody siege. They are surprised to instead find the city already under siege, the urban residents and police having defected to the side of the PRM. Arriving behind the enemy assault, Provisional Republic and AAL forces are able to relieve the siege and secure a major waypoint on the road to Mexico City

-The expected counterattack fails to materialize, as the Synarchists realize they can inflict the most casualties by attempting to rely on this base of fanatical support to hold the south and make the pro-Republic forces fight town by town, in some respects using the enemy’s tactics against him. The ferocity of the struggle leads to two new battalions being called south to assist the thinning forces and replace casualties. In many cases, sniper and machine-gun fire scatters the less disciplined revolutionaries and the AAL soldiers are made to carry some tough battles. Seeking to prevent repeats, many Mexican units end up having an NCO directly appointed by the AAL, which the provisional government must begrudgingly accept. Yiska remains confident that he will soon be able to fully entrust the Mexican people with their own liberation

-In addition to raising and training forces loyal to the new Provisional Republic, the AAL uses local vehicles and materials to instruct these forces in the creation of improvised armored vehicles, which prove handy in the fast-paced tactics of the rebel forces. The latest addition to this arsenal, created in response to increased use of improvised bombers by the Synarchists, is the Rattlesnake anti-aircraft platform. A less armored vehicle designed to provide protection behind the immediate front, the Rattlesnake takes a flatbed pickup and adds a mount capable of carrying four M1917 machine guns on a joint swivel, which is more than capable of taking out most of the stick-and-string biplanes they might encounter through sheer volume of fire

-Some thought is spared for the home front as Yiska must assuage his people of their fears and preserve confidence in their leadership, which he does through radio broadcasts that sends his voice and those of other Great Council leaders over the airwaves. This helps assure the tribes back home that victory is on the horizon for their sons and brothers, though much more significant relief comes from the United Socialist Republic’s decision to focus their war on the Gulf and Confederacy rather than drive into their undermanned homeland
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-Alaskan oil continues to be a lifeline to the Federalists and a boon to Canada, no matter how little can be extracted, and in return both continue to ship arms westward. Unable to fuel its entire Army Air Force, the Federalists spare several dozen P-40 fighters and a variety of infantry weapons for the Alaskans, as well as sought after landing craft for the specialist operations. Not all of the oil reaches the final destination, however, as several of the oil trains are unexpectedly derailed deep in the Canadian wilderness, leading to the loss of several tanker cars worth of oil

-Having received both the M2 automatic carbine and M1 Garand from the Federalists in the past, a tool shop in Anchorage is tasked with finding a way to combine the automatic fire of the M2 with the devastating punch of the Garand’s .30-06 round. After some finagling, the result is the M10, one of the first of a new breed of “battle rifles” capable of select-fire. Though it is not remotely as controllable as the M2 during automatic fire, the M10 has a 20-round magazine and no significant downsides over the M1 Garand, and provides the automatic fire option for suppression or close quarters engagements

-Seeing the success that the League of Niʼ Ałníiʼgi has had with encryption, Inuit are recruited in the dozens to serve as code-talkers for all sorts of operations. As the AEAA operates primarily in secret, these are invaluable and used on the most covert missions. In many ways these code talkers are even more difficult to beat, as their language is equally impenetrable but isolated to the remote north thousands of miles away

-Alaska’s population continues to take up immigration from disaffected people in the United States and the world over with its promise of freedom from the wave of authoritarianism that has swept much of the earth. The main source of immigration continues to be Californians opposed to the Protectorate, but the crackdown on former Opposition families in the Gulf leads to hundreds of new arrivals evading the authorities and making for Alaska due to fears of extradition by the Free States. Holdouts from Hawaii and the Philippines also continue to arrive, but most surprising is a ship of Frenchmen from Japanese-controlled Indochina, who have heard of the shipments of oil coming from Alaska and choose to seek permits to prospect here rather than in the deserts of Africa
 

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Sobotnik

New Member
SOCIAL SECURITY AND SOCIAL REFORM IN AMERICA

BY ELIAS DRUDGE
(page 84)
…therefore as per the preceding chapters laid out in extensive detail, we make the following recommendations to tackle the great evils that plagued America prior to its dissolution and played one of, if not the biggest role in the events that led up to the brutal civil war now afflicting us. These five evils are as follows:

WANT: Rates of poverty worsened considerably post 1930 and most Americans have seen living standards decline since. Low living standards and the decline of most of the industrial working classes into penury were directly to blame for the collapse of law and order in America and the rise of extremist political movements. If we are to prevent a repeat of this, it is key to eliminate poverty postwar, a power that is within our capabilities technologically and perhaps now politically. This will require an extensive reworking of social insurance and its expansion to prevent the unemployed being thrown into poverty by poor luck and to make possible those on the bottom rungs to begin their climb into the middle class necessary for the bedrock of a stable republic.

IGNORANCE: Racial animiosity has little improved in the past 15 years, and in some instances has gone into major reversal since the re-enslavement of the negro population of the south in large numbers. Rural populations in particular lack access to modern facilities such as telephones and radios, while the comprehensive education offered to city dwellers is not universal. We propose universal education provided freely til the age of 15 and highschool education for all. Rather than a focus on general skills as under Roosevelt last decade, postsecondary education should be catered by states and businesses to cultivate a skilled workforce focused to their particular needs.

DISEASE: Extensive outbreaks have returned to America with the war as large populations move about and soldiers are in close proximity for extended periods. Expanding vaccine development and national efforts to tackle diseases are a priority. Although smallpox has been largely eradicated, there is still room to eliminate diphteria and malaria from our borders with little additional effort. Measles, mumps, rubella, polio, and a multitude of others are presently incurable and no vaccines exist, but it is hoped that in the future this could change. We advocate an expansion of medical research and vaccination programmes. We may yet need to visit health insurance, as universal coverage in one form or another will be necessary in the coming future.

SQUALOR: Most of the American population has moved to urban environs in recent years, and growing populations put strain on existing infrastructure. Efforts to promote the growth of suburbs are impractical due to fuel and automobile shortages and the need to retain people close to their places of work for the immediate future, and so the cities must be made cleaner in the interim. As clean water became widespread in the 19th century, so too must clean air be made a priority. Most homes and cities still burn coal and wood to heat water and homes and provide energy. Recommendations include installation of solar heating units, a ban on ”smokey” fuel burning within urban areas, new furnace and stove regulations, etc. Also key is to improve public access to parklands and establishment of urban allotments for the growing of vegetables.

IDLENESS: After wars there are traditionally major economic recessions due to the redundancy of workers employed in wartime industries and lack of goods to buy. To this end we propose to maintain high levels of employment to manage a transition from wartime to peacetime industry and to pay out bond dividends in steady installments to maintain economic activity. Should this be successfully made there will be considerable resources available for reconstruction efforts and the latent skills and talents of so many Americans now employed in war may be utilized to far greater and noble causes. There is time yet to see every man in America made a king.
 

RayPurchase

Senior Member
Waxahachie - October 1941


The stillness of the night was shattered by the throaty warble of truck engines. The headlights swept along residential street, well trimmed gardens, walls nearly still wet with paint, and tree lined sidewalks. It was the textbook picture of suburbia, a few miles south of the Dallas and Fort Worth area, far removed from the hardships of war. The flickering of the light beneath the blinds of the bedroom stirred Oscar from his sleep even as his wife still slept soundly next to him. The room was relatively spartan in nature. The walls were whitewashed and the only decoration aside from a small vase on the dresser was a hanging picture of a herd of mustangs. Cheap imitation art really, the sort of thing you could grab a dime a dozen down the flea market. They weren’t complaining however, they had a home now, away from war torn Virginia, even if the military reports revealed the truth of the Communists still rolling south, it was still a distant threat compared to the ruins of their former home. Against the door hung his uniform, whilst there was familiarity in the rank insignia, the rest was still somewhat alien to him, the drab tan of the Gulf Army replacing the olive green of his uniform of the now former Opposition Army. There were times when he had stayed up until the small hours, wondering if he should have remained with his men, to continue the fight for their home. But he had a family to worry about, his wife slumbering beside him, and the twin a few metres away. To die for one’s home was an honourable thing, but the chance of a new life and salvation had proved too much.

He eased himself up from his bed and tiptoed over to the window. He slowly prised his fingers between two slats and opened them. The street was lined with trucks and activity. From the dimmed street light he could make out the insignia on the side of several of the military style trucks. Texas Rangers Operational Security division. The first through that came to his mind was that it was potentially a general call to arms, home rotation had been cancelled and they were here to get everyone back to camp, every house along the road housed a military family, the dwellings newly built to accommodate the Opposition military refugees. This illusion was shattered however as the door to their neighbours home was battered down, and scores of revolver and shotgun wielding Rangers descended upon each house.

“Honey…”

He didn’t get the chance to utter more than that before the house echoed from the front door being busted open, boots stamping against the stairs and calls ro surrender ringing down the corridors. By now his wife had been jolted awake. He grabbed her guiding her out of bed.

“Is it Confederates, the SD..!?”

She gabled hysterically, the shock of their present situation merging with the last memories of their home. He shushed her.

“No it’s a mistake or,.. Or something, just get the kids and everything will be alrig..”

He was cut off as the bedroom door burst open, and they found the barrel of a shotgun levelled at them, the blackgreatcoat of the Ranger in the doorway looming before them. They had always seemed like something of a joke the Rangers. Especially to Oscar growing up far from Texas. A bygone relic from the age of cattle rustlers and injuns on the frontier, of revolvers and stetsons. They were packing revolvers, but the stetsons weren’t in place tonight, just stark black caps. Only the glint of the star on their chests gave any indication as to their role and historic image. Oscar was dragged downstairs, struggling without success in the grip of two of the Rangers, the terrified screams of his wife and children echoing in his ears. Out in the street, the screams and cries of other Opposition men and their families filled the streets. No one was coming to help them, even if there had been a sympathetic ear, the new housing development was far enough removed from the rest of town that their cries went unanswered. He was forced onto his knees facing the row of houses, his knees bruised and bleed from being dragged along the sidewalk. To his left was his neighbour Charlie, desperately trying to fight the hold of his captor as he twisted towards the trucks.

“Unhand me you bastard! Where the hell are you taking them,”

All he received in response was the butt of a shotgun cracking against his back, collapsing onto the floor with a cry of pain. Oscar managed to just crane his neck to see his family disappearing into the confines of one of the covered trucks before he was given a cuff round the head to get him back into line. Before them stood the one who was clearly in charge of the operation. He was wearing one of those damn stetsons, unlike the others he looked just like one of the characters that Oscar and the kids would catch at the cinema, come to life off of the silver screen. Even down to the waistcoat under his greatcoat and the silver badge that glinted in the streetlights. He pulled out a sheet of paper from his pocket, and cleared his throat.

“In accordance with the ‘Espionage and Treason Act’ you have all been found guilty in absentia by Court Martial of crimes against the great Gulf Republic on the charges of treason, subterfuge and acts of sedition in wartime. The sentence is death of which there is no remit for appeal or mitigation. May god have mercy on your souls, long live the Republic,”

The words hammered home like nails in a coffin. His mouth moving but no sound came out, As one the Rangers behind them took a step back, and the sounds of revolvers being cocked in unison rang out. On board the truck the confused cries of the women and children were cut short for a moment, as gunfire rang out, once again silence returned to the street as the trucks roared away, their destination unknown.
 
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Amfleet

Atomic Birb
Turn 7 Preview: Maelstrom

The invasion of the Carribean was a calculated move by the Gulf and Confederacy, intended not only to remove allied forces from their flanks but intended to deal such a blow to Franco-British prestige that retaliation at a time and place of Axis choosing would be inevitable. The most storied navy in history was to see the sun set upon it after overcommitting against two of the newest naval powerhouses, or so the plan went.

The whole initiative is the design of the Gulf’s theatre Commander in Chief, Admiral Chester Nimitz, who had anticipated this confrontation to occur months beforehand. His opponent, Admiral Sir Andrew Cunningham, has played conservatively, however, and this allows him to add the full four carriers of the Illustrious class to his hand. The mastermind of Taranto had replaced Pound as First Sea Lord following the loss of several capital ships in the Battle of the North Atlantic.

Both sides are well aware of the supremacy of the aircraft carrier in modern naval combat, and that the Union Navy so far reigns supreme in this field. However, the day of the battleship is not done, and as the massive battle fleet steams south, two of the most powerful battleships the Kriegsmarine have ever built take advantage of the diversion to sneak out of Kiel, hook around Iceland, and attempt to join the melee by surprise.

The Bismarck, Tirpitz, and Prinz Eugen would instead be the first to see combat about 300 miles off the (New) Jersey Shore as their location is discovered, possibly by a Union submarine. Bismarck is rattled by repeated torpedo hits from Fleet Air Arm Beauforts, but all strike her massive armored belt, failing to cripple the ship but rattling it badly and knocking out several pieces of sensitive equipment such as radar. Seemingly the most attractive target of the three ships, USAAF B-24 heavy bombers then strike it several times, badly damaging the superstructure as she attempts to make for Confederate air cover. Her forward turrets are disabled by the bombs during the dash south, and much of her forward superstructure is reduced to twisted steel.

The ships instead make for Wilmington, but here too the ships are hounded in port by determined Federalist bombers even as the first attacks of the main engagement rage further to the south. After reporting the situation, Captain Lindemann receives orders directly from a nervous Hitler that the ships are not to be risked unnecessarily and is given a plan called Unternehmen Zerberus to make a run for safe port at Tampa on the other side of the Miami-Havana minefield. This operation will only be a small microcosm of the massive naval clash that is just beginning...

Order of Battle for the Battle of the Windward Passage

(Auxiliaries and other non-combat vessels omitted)

ALLIES

Union Navy




A Martlet lands on UNS Foch (originally to be named Indomitable)

x5 Fleet Carrier (UNS Illustrious, Formidable, Victorious, Foch, Béarn)

x6 Battleship (UNS Rodney, Revenge, King Geoge V, Prince of Wales, Richelieu, Jean Bart)

x2 Battlecruiser (UNS Renown, Repulse)

x10 Light Cruiser (UNS Nigeria, Kenya, Belfast, Liverpool, Ajax, Achilles, Argonaut, Bonaventure, Perth, Orion)

x23 Destroyer

At least 5 S-Class Submarine

United States Navy



Piranha midget submarines prepare for loading onto a mothership for use in the battle

x1 Fleet Carrier (USS Wasp)

x1 Heavy Cruiser (USS Baltimore)

x3 Light Cruiser (USS Pittsburgh, Brooklyn, Boston)

x10 Fletcher-class Destroyer

x20 Evarts-class Destroyer Escort

At least 2 Gato-Class Submarine, unknown number of Piranha midget subs

Koninklijke Marine (Royal Netherlands Navy)

x1 Light Cruiser HNLMS De Ruyter

Marynarka Wojenna (Polish Navy in Exile)

x1 Destroyer (ORP Piorun)

AXIS

Republic of the Gulf Navy




RGN Brutus, a Zavala-class escort carrier intended to help plug the carrier gap with the Union Navy

x2 Fleet Carrier (RGN Ranger, Langley)

x2 Escort Carrier (RGN Zavala, Brutus)

x5 Battleship (RGN Texas, Archer, San Bernard, San Antonio, San Jacinto)

x2 Heavy Cruiser (RGN Tallahassee, Austin)

x3 Light Cruiser (RGN Independence, Liberty, Freedom)

x20 Destroyer

x3 Rattlesnake-class ocean-going submarine

x10 Pioneer-class coastal submarine

Confederate States Navy



Confederate "Davids" steel themselves to rush the enemy task force

x1 Fleet Carrier (CSS Chancellorsville)

x2 Escort Carrier (CSS John Paul Jones, Valcour Island)

x4 Battleship (CSS Alabama, Tennessee, North Carolina, Virginia)

x1 Heavy Cruiser (CSS Montgomery)

x4 Light Cruiser (CSS Robert E. Lee, PGT Beauregard, Stonewall Jackson, A.P. Hill)

x20 Destroyer

x30-40 David-class torpedo boat

x2 Hunley-class ocean-going submarine

x6 American Diver-class coastal submarine

Kriegsmarine (German Navy)



Bismarck heads south, as seen from Prinz Eugen

x2 Battleship (Bismarck, Tirpitz)
x1 Heavy Cruiser (Prinz Eugen)

At least 12 Type VII U-Boat

To be continued...
 
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Amfleet

Atomic Birb
Turn 7 Preview 2: Parts Per Million

05:00 Hours, 16 February 1942

Near Dundee, Mississippi


Under a full moon, a Forward Air Control squad of the Confederate Second Air Force moves into a treeline overlooking the Mississippi River and Red Territory. They step carefully, as a ghostly low-hanging fog obscures tree roots and fallen branches, or possibly mines. Finding that this same fog obscures their view of the supposed enemy positions across the river, the NCO orders a private known for his tree-climbing ability to make his way skyward. Strapping a Handie-Talkie across his back and a pair of binoculars to his side, he squirrels his way to the top over the course of several minutes.

Through the specs he peers across the river and into the hamlet of Helena-West Helena. Above the mist he spies trucks with slit headlights moving down the street, a Sherman tank with Gear and Hammer insignia guarding a road junction, and most importantly dozens of small fires in the trees beyond where the enemy sleeps. Pulling the antennae out of the Handie-Talkie, he calls in his findings to the Knickebein stations in Huntsville and Birmingham, before hustling his way down.

As the skies begin to turn blue with the approach of the sun, they look on as the sky erupts with the drone of Junkers 88s arriving to attack the encampment. The bombs they drop do not explode, and many of the aircraft do not drop bombs at all, instead spraying a fine rain from wing spreaders. Reporting the attack to be dead on target, the FAC squad falls back as the regular infantry arrive with several Higgins boats for the crossing.

By noon, the battle is finished and it is their turn to cross and carry out their Battle Damage Assessment. The encampment is a grotesque scene, unlike any other scene after a bombardment. Bodies in the dozens appear almost undamaged, a far cry from the mangled and dismembered corpses usually seen after an attack. Several are completely unmoved from their places of slumber in a manner that suggests they were never awakened. On the other hand, most appear in various stages of panic, mouths agape or desperately clutching rags over their faces in a vain attempt to stop ingesting the invisible gas that smells like moldy hay.

The big surprise, however, is how many of them are wearing gas masks. These men are riddled with bullets or shrapnel, and the colonel in charge describes the engagement with them thusly:

“Most of them were conscripts and barely trained, but they were clearly pissed about the phosgene. These are the types of boys that usually surrender when the jig is up, not this time though. They hid in dugouts or wherever, then went after us with whatever they could get their hands on, sometimes just bayonets. I reckon about a third of them got their masks in time, and many were not wearing them properly or were a bad fit, so a bunch of them unlucky bastards died anyways.”

He shows them to a crate of gas masks, Franco-British designs made for the Blitz. The sergeant finds a dispatch on USRA letterhead nearby, dated the previous day. It cautions the commissar in charge of the camp on the heightened risk of gas attack and instructs him to have the men fit their gas masks at earliest possibility. Too little, too late it seems.



Confederate stormtroopers after a subsequent gas attack on Tulsa
 

mausedpotatos

New Member
LORE POST

Nashville, Arkansas ... 8:05 AM


Lowe Todsman was sitting in a hard backed wooden chair in what was formerly the Pinkman group law firm building. Currently, the Pinkman group was no longer practicing law in the squat two story brick building. Most had either left to find more stable work in the city or vacated the South following her secession from America. The county had eventually placed the building under the care of the bank that it was mortgaged to, and so it sat empty for a year before it was snapped up by a suave business man. This strange individual insisted that anyone who he encountered called him Mister Barnabus, according to Cheryl, Lowe's secretary. Lowe was not familiar with the name. Earl, full name Earl Merrick Barnabus, was at the moment sitting across from Lowe in a considerably more ornamented leather business chair. He had a white saucer on which a teacup of faintly steaming coffee rested. Lowe had not been offered any refreshments after being sat down in the frankly muggy office. Clearly, this fellow insisted on keeping his building at an extremely high temperature during the winter months. That, or it was some attempt to get under his skin. He doubted that the hot teacup of coffee in Earls possession was helping the rooms stuffy atmosphere at all. A bead of sweat trailed down the back of Lowes head. He bit his tongue to keep from asking Mister Barnabus if he intended to season him before roasting him for dinner, but that sort of acidity was obviously what this pompous individual was hoping to extract from him.

Earl took a sip from his teacup and quipped, "You seem shot, Earl. But I'm afraid that I don't have a pitcher. I would pour you a cup otherwise."

Lowe ignored the disrespect of being addressed by his first name by a practical stranger. He could tell that Earl was only trying to get a rise out of him. Even now, Lowe could see the smarm dripping from the mans statement. "I appreciate your concern, but I do not believe that I will be keeling over anytime today. Actually, I was hoping that we might cut down to business," Lowe said.

"Of course," Earl evenly replied. "Of course, of course. You see I've been thinking about that business for some time now."

"Have you?"

"I have. I cannot understand."

"What can't you understand?"

Earl took another sup from his cup and set it down roughly. Coffee slopped over the side rim and onto the saucer. Some of it splashed onto his thumb. Earl twitched slightly in response to what Lowe guessed was a searing pain. He did not make a sound as he produced a handkerchief and dabbed at his thumb before tucking it back away. He put his hands in his lap. Lowe could see the skin on his thumb was already beginning to blister.

"I cannot understand," began Earl slowly, "Why it is necessary to nationalize my property. I have been running it smoothly and selling products at a fair market value." Lowe saw the man tightly clench his scalded thumb in his fist and begin to squeeze. He was doing an excellent job at maintaining his posture with such an obviously painful burn. It eluded Lowe as to why such theatrics were required for what was obviously an already set decision. "We take no pleasure in the temporary acquisition of a citizens assets, sir."

Earl set his saucer on a small circular table beside him and steepled his fingers while resting his elbows on the arms of the chair. He was a quite deadpan man, Lowe thought. Earl hadn't so much as offered a courteous half-grin while unlocking the downstairs front door. As the pair had walked the deathly silent and empty hallways to the second floor, there had still been nothing. He supposed that it was easy for a man to lose touch with his ability to socialize after being isolated without employees for so long. Perhaps he had hoped to find more here compared to wherever he had come from. The material demands of war for factory workers and familial relocation made such a hope impossible.

"Why aren't you taking the Adam's tin plant instead?" asked Earl.

"That plant is not as adequately prepared for retooling. Your steel factory is. Your furnaces can burn hotter and your crucibles can shape metal dynamically," said Lowe.

Earl practically exploded, "You think because the warboard passed some - " He spluttered for a moment as this previously composed man seemed to take on the visage of a hypoxic animal. A gnarled vein that Lowe had not noticed before bulged slightly outwards from Earls temple. Finally Earl found his voice and continued, "Some flimsy acquisitions legislation that you can remove my plants autonomy? The appliances that we produce are necessary to society."

Lowe held in a scoff and thought, 'Beneficial to your pockets more likely, sir.'

"This is not a flimsy legislation. This is a federal mandate, sir. The appliances that you produced are no longer necessary. Auxiliary production will resume in Sarepta to the South. To be frank sir, you are lucky to be allowed to remain in indirect control of this factory, let alone your entire business. Judge Peasly was angry that you dragged your feet for so long on returning paperwork to the court. More so, when you tried to waste the boards time by filing an appeal. You know what this work means to the CSA better than anyone. Besides, the population here is not sufficient to work the industry that is needed. Once we place the factory under the states care we will move in prisoners to assist in the work."

Earl grew red with anger. His air of dispassionateness evaporated. He was still seated but raised a finger into the air self-righteously. "A man like me should not have to suffer this sort of treatment. It is not fair. I worked my entire life to build this damned business!"

Lowe spread his hands palms up and shrugged his shoulders. "Take it up with the Yanks, I'm afraid. They're the cause for this nasty business." He reached into his inner jacket pocket and pulled out a thrice-folded piece of official paper. He unfolded it and held it out to Earl. "This is a copy of the statement of acknowledgement. You must sign it and agree that retooling will begin immediately. The warboard will then assign contractors as necessary and give you a deadline."

Earl lashed out with the back of his hand and sent the paper fluttering to the floor. Lowe tried to remain visibly calm. The heat of the room was getting to him now. Lowe knew he was losing the battle of keeping his composure and was evermore considering standing up and engaging in a screaming match with this simpleton. It was astounding that he had done so well for himself with such an ape-like brain, he mused. Slowly, he stood up and gazed at Earl. He made no move to pick up the paper and stared at Earl for a moment. Slowly he drawled out, "Sign it and give it to the court. You have until the afternoon or Judge Peasly will declare you in noncompliance. Do you understand?" Earl said nothing in reply. There was a long quiet between the two that hung menacingly in the air. Earl finally relented and reached down to snatch up the paper. He crammed it into his jackets breast pocket, popping a few of the pockets stitches visibly in his anger. Lowe knew that Earl was a fool, but not an but perhaps not an irredeemable idiot after all. He would sign the paper.

"Good. Now that we are done speaking business, I will see myself out." Without waiting for a reply he walked to the double doors leading out of Earl's office. He picked up his porkpie hat from the darkly varnished coat stand and placed it atop his head. He opened the door and was halfway out before looking over his shoulder at Earl. Earl was still sitting there and watching Lowe go with a beady and spiteful gaze. "Remember to have it in by the deadline, Mister Barnabus." Earl's jaw clenched tightly, but he gave a nod in reply.

"Good. It was a... pleasure." Lowe said with as much false sincerity as he could muster, before stepping out and closing the door behind himself. As Lowe walked down the silent buildings hallway and began down the second floors staircase, the loud silence was broken by the faint sound of a teacup and its saucer being thrown to the floor.
 
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Amfleet

Atomic Birb
Turn 7 Preview 3: The Battle for Heaven

The start of 1942 heralds several grand accomplishments in the field of military aviation as the airplane proves itself a decisive technology. Allied and Axis pilots struggle far above the battlefields of Europe and the Americas to claim a monopoly on the right to rain death on soldier and civilian alike. This terror from the skies no longer comes exclusively in the form of high explosives, but scorching napalm, blistering gas, suffocating thermobaric munitions, and terror-inducing cruise missiles. With such fearsome weapons now on display, states pour their resources into air power to try and wrest the monopoly on death from above for themselves.



At a remote airstrip outside Gary, Indiana, communist researchers are the first to bring the jet age to America. Using the Power Jets W.1 as a basis, engineers at Republic Developmental Institute make a breakthrough in jet engine design with the I-A turbojet engine. Producing 1,400 pound-feet of thrust using axial-flow compression, it is the most powerful jet engine in the world, and the first to be designed and produced outside of Europe. The engine is paired to a basic airframe with the engine running from the nose to an outlet below the tail assembly, resulting in an aircraft capable of a tremendous 500 miles per hour. The “Banshee,” so named for its unusual shrieking noise, is an advanced design, but lacks refinement, leading Comrade Browder to point out that “There are no trivialities in aviation” after an early model suffers an engine failure and crashes. Ironically, its high speed makes it virtually incapable of turning combat, though it is fast enough to intercept bombers and V-1 cruise missiles with ease and take them out with its six .50 machine guns. In fact, one could consider the first “combat” between jet aircraft to be its shootdown of an unmanned Confederate “Boll Weevil” cruise missile during the bombardment of Indiannapolis.



The propellerless Banshee comes as a shock to some within the American Axis military establishments, but deep within the Gulf’s most secret research establishments, designers at Piper Aircraft have been long seeking out a capable beast of burden for BMW 003 turbojets imported via U-Boat from Germany. The Piper F10A “Shrike” is a much larger design than the red Banshee, with twin wing-mounted engines on a straight wing and a top speed of 480 miles per hour, partly inhibited by its twin tail to improve stability at lower altitudes. Bearing a devastating armament of three 20mm cannons concentrated in the nose, it can ambush and swiftly shred enemy bombers, greatly impairing Federalist retaliation to the Confederate bomber offensive. A slightly slower but more refined aircraft than the Banshee, it also carries such innovations as the first ever “ejection seat” as the Gulf and Confederacy both struggle to keep their smaller pools of skilled pilots alive. The Banshee and the Shrike encounter each other in the first ever combat between manned jets over the plains of Oklahoma in late April. The engagement is a draw as the tremendous speed involved means that neither pilot is able to get a bead on the other, both attempting to make a pouncing attack on the other in tactics adapted from propellor-driven fighters. No doubt this is a sign that as technology evolves, so must tactics before the jet aircraft comes into its prime.



The Confederacy is by no means left out, though its innovation is unconventional for different reasons. After years of studying foreign aircraft developments, Blackwelder Aircraft of Columbus, Georgia, fulfill a longstanding Confederate specification for a long-range heavy bomber capable of carrying 15,000 pounds of bombs at a combat radius of 1,000 miles. The BA-1C “Valkyrie” is a unique design in that it outwardly appears to have only two engines, but actually has two twin engines. Two engines are contained within each wing-mounted nacelle, each with its contra-rotating propellers. These propellers make its approach highly audible, sometimes even before air raid sirens sound, though it also means the aircraft has a potent psychological effect in shattered New York City. This design also has an exceptionally high flight ceiling, aiding reconnaissance and making interception a challenge for enemy fighters as its cruising altitude of 35,000 feet is accessible only to top-of-the-line aircraft. Alongside the “Boll Weevil” heavy cruise missile, these instruments of aerial terror will ensure the fire from the sky does not come to a close anytime soon.
 
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Amfleet

Atomic Birb
TURN 7: 1 JANUARY- 30 APRIL 1942

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WORLD EVENTS


-With the German failure to conquer Moscow, the Soviets launch their first major counteroffensive of the war. Making use of paratroopers, the offensive is limited in scope and costs hundreds of thousands of lives to gain a buffer of only 70-100 kilometers breadth. This is still a significant relief for Stalin, as it gives him time to arrange the consolidation of northern defenses. Both the Nazi and Soviet leadership know that the next move will most likely be to the vital Caucusus oilfields, and this clash of titans is headed south
-In North Africa, Rommel’s forces begin to make an ever growing impact on this theater of warfare, as Benghazi is retaken by the Axis before supply lines are stretched out and the offensive must come to a halt. The cunning of this tank commander leaves an impression on Franco-British forces as their armored forces are not just defeated, but defeated in detail, losing huge numbers of prisoners as Tobruk seems to be the next to come under threat. Rommel is still anxious to take Suez as soon as possible however, as his resources and skills would serve Axis interests much more effectively on the Eastern Front
-In Operation Ichi-Go, the Imperial Japanese Army launches an offensive designed at turning the Second Sino-Japanese War decisively in their favor. The heavy concentration of Japanese forces crosses the Yellow River and works its way south, crushing several Nationalist and Communist divisions in its path with effective air support as Japanese air superiority establishes itself. Chiang Kai-Shek sends envoys to talk peace with the Japanese even though the offensive is far from over, and when word of this gets out, a group of generals led by Tang Enbo carry out a coup that reduces him to a figurehead leader. After putting their shattered armies back together, the United Front is able to halt the southward drive at Changsha, temporarily denying the offensive’s goal of an overland connection to Japanese puppet states in former Indochina

AMERICAN THEATER, WORLD WAR TWO

NORTHEASTERN FRONT


-Finding himself to be at a substantial numeric disadvantage against the combined forces of the Federalists and USRA, Field Marshall Patton orders a Confederate withdrawal to the Mason-Dixon Line, pursued by a combined force of nearly a million and a half Federalists and Reds attempting to cut them off at every turn. At the Battle of Harrisburg, several Confederate divisions are cut off and destroyed or drowned outright crossing the Susquehanna under fire. Elsewhere, Confederate troops harry the Federalist advance by laying massed landmines along strategic routes to buy time. Nevertheless, the defenses in the region are consolidated across a much narrower frontline that allows the Confederacy to keep at least some of its gains in the north for the time being
-With a fear of once again being struck from behind, a massive defensive campaign begins, as does an effort to crush any insurgency still remaining. A new phase of the Siege of Baltimore sees “Grouch” assault mortars used to deadly effect and the city finally seized outright as resistance is reduced to sporadic levels. Similar assaults are carried out across Kentucky by Confederate Bushmen, though resistance continues to hold out in Covington as direct communist fire support and supplies come across the river from Cincinnati
-With Philadelphia safe, the Federalists launch a limited counteroffensive aimed at breaching the new Confederate line and taking the highly strategic air bases on the hotly contested Delmarva Peninsula, from which a substantial portion of the Atlantic coast can be controlled. Though greatly outnumbered, a Confederate tank division and several infantry brigades are able to contain the advance behind secondary defensive lines at the Battle of Dover due to a lack of suitable anti-tank weapons in Federalist service and persistent Confederate air support
-From bases in southern Delmarva and northern Virginia, the Confederate Air Force plays perhaps the most significant role in holding the Mason-Dixon Line with a significant bomber offensive. Knowing that the USAAF and RCAF are still rebuilding, it sends massed raids aimed at breaking civilian morale and destroying critical infrastructure, with New York City highest on the list of targets. The city is plunged into darkness and chaos as Con Edison powerplants are bombed and many high rise buildings turned into burned out shells, and the raids significantly delay railroad movements to the south as tracks are destroyed and steam locomotives must be brought in due to unreliable electricity
-Another aerial offensive of a different nature takes place as the Confederates deploy a nefarious new weapon created with Gulf support. The Cruise Missile V1 “Boll Weevil” is a step up from the FSA’s Maybug, carrying a 2,500 lb warhead and twin engines for greater range. From bases in the forests of Kentucky, about 4,000 of these missiles are launched at Indianapolis over the course of several weeks, at least 500 finding their mark and causing widespread destruction despite the destruction of several missile launchers by the American Liberation Air Force. Once again much of the damage is to the rail network, but the bombs also cause damage to Transmission Plant #1 (formerly Allison Transmission), a notable setback to communist vehicle manufacture

PLAINS FRONT

-Once again, the focus of the Communists’ wrath is Texas and Oklahoma, as the best troops in the greatest numbers available are committed in two related pushes to seize Dallas and knock the Gulf out of the war. The Gulf and its Confederate allies have other plans, launching their largest combined counteroffensive in Operation San Jacinto, a pair of large pincer maneuvers designed to recoup the vast territorial losses incurred so far. Making liberal use of gas warfare, the fighting once again brings death on a massive scale that extends far behind the battle lines
-The American Liberation Army continues its offensive to encircle “Fortress Oklahoma City” as several divisions clash with Gulf units holding the Route 77 corridor, overrunning them quickly. Several divisions to besiege the city, which defiantly clings on for several months before finally capitulating on the fourth of April as attempts to relieve them fail, shells continue to rain down, and food supplies are depleted. The siege is a hellish experience for those caught inside, as the ALA’s “Operation Firestorm” sees significant raids using napalm and fuel-air explosives to effectively burn and suffocate the enemy into submission with great effect
-The Confederacy leads the initial counter-strike, as Phosgene gas attacks across eastern Arkansas and Texarkana are used to soften resistance from a dug in communist field army, allowing them to quickly overwhelm initial defensive lines as the enemy is not quite prepared for chemical attacks. Having received forewarning of the gas attacks not long before their commencement, the communists are still eventually able to adapt to gas warfare, buying crucial time for their own major offensive in the area
-This offensive pushes straight south in four corps on Dallas, but III and IV Corps are ordered at the last minute to counter Operation San Jacinto to relieve the embattled conscripts in central Arkansas and ensure the gains of last autumn are not lost. While they succeed in crushing the western arm of the counteroffensive, the enemy pressure as well as the later Gulf counteroffensive are enough to halt the drive more or less at the gates of Dallas along several lakes to the north of the city, though this does cause the Gulf government to evacuate many of its personnel south to Houston
-These offensive operations, as well as the defense of red holdings in Arkansas, have been largely led by less experienced conscripts relying on their superior numbers, but with a decisive blow elusive, Browder pulls the gloves off and unleashes two field armies of veteran troops and new medium tanks under Field Marshall Robert Raven. An ongoing Gulf (and Cuban) counteroffensive in the area is instead forced to act as a breakwater, and finds itself to be a mere speed bump at first as three divisions of the elite Red Guards spearhead the attack. Fast Gulf armor manages to blunt the attack at the Battle of Abilene, but the city falls nevertheless and the Gulf’s capital now appears to be in imminent peril
-Enter the wild card, the Free States of America. After nursing wounds from the safety of his Rocky Mountain strongholds and enduring only sporadic fighting and aerial skirmishes, General Bradley initiates Operation Mercury, the largest counter-offensive ever conducted by the FSA. Anyone who believed President Kimball was about to seek a separate peace with the reds is silenced as two field armies spill forth from the foothills under the cover of a concentrated aerial offensive. This offensive has been delayed for several months, as the reds have poured their own aircraft into bombing airstrips and fortifications in the Dakotas, diverting troops to repel an anticipated offensive there and resulting in the loss of many of the aircraft needed in the coming offensive
-By April, however, the offensive is back on the table and quickly overwhelming enemy defensive positions, driving a salient that seriously threatens the rear of the red offensive into Texas and forces several divisions to abandon the push on Dallas, while others are trapped behind the advance. By the end of the month, the Bull Moose flies over Dodge City more than a year since it was first occupied. With their forces near the length of their logistical chain, however, both sides find themselves in a potentially precarious position

CENTRAL AMERICAN FRONT

-In Operation Cartwheel, Panamanian PDP sympathizers backed by the Special Operations Executive carry out a coup d’etat that overthrows the pro-GCC government after brief street fighting and installs a socialist regime that disarms and interns the small Gulf force protecting the Panama Canal. This action plays a decisive role in the Battle of the Windward Passage, allowing a battlegroup led by USS Wasp to outflank the enemy through use of the canal
-To the north, the PRM and its All American League allies begin the final stage of their war against the Sinarquistas. With popular support for the regime fading, Yiska and the revolutionaries drive quickly against a demoralized opposition that either surrenders or fights to the death with no in-between. Choosing to outflank the city rather than confront it directly, these forces surge through Michoacán and Guerrero before turning back northward and into the outskirts of Mexico City
-Other PRM forces choose to take the train, and barrel directly eastwards from Guadalajara, leading to a partial encirclement of the capital city from the north and west. Heavy fighting develops in the mountain forests on the immediate outskirts before giving way to city streets. As the revolutionists have done much to publicize their approach, the Jefe’s forces soon face an internal challenge that proves to be the beginning of the end. Several “University Brigades” composed of students and antifascist sympathizers rise up in revolt within the city itself, leading to a sudden and rapid collapse of the city’s network as this fifth column tears it apart
-With his position untenable and red banners flying over the National Palace, Abascal holes up in the city’s Apostolic Nunciature, a prisoner of his own cowardice. Mariachi bands assemble outside the building to try and drive him out with the sound of annoying trumpets, though this has yet to produce any results. Meanwhile, in spite of the PRM’s declaration of victory, two of the most fanatical divisions withdraw to Veracruz with the intention of fighting on to the end
-Mexico’s revolution is over, but its political position is more contentious than ever. The provisional republic that takes power is predominantly a moderately left-wing administration, as it was before, however more radical leftists have begun to permeate the new order. In this climate, longtime rebel leader Valdes ultimately declines the Provisional Presidency and settles to become head of the reformed Mexican Army with the rank of Field Marshall. In his stead, former president Lázaro Cárdenas returns from exile in Guatemala to resume his post with the endorsement of the University Brigades, inching Mexico further to the left and more in line with the nations of the Pacto Defensivo del Pueblo
-As such, and with the encouragement of the All American League, the new Mexican government joins the PDP, becoming the largest member of a defensive pact that is growing rapidly with the admission of Panama and even overtures from Colombia. Unlike the rest of the PDP, however, it refuses to join the Allies and commit to war with the Gulf, at least for the current rebuilding phase. Cárdenas does demand that Gulf troops exit, and that the former American factions commit to non-interference in Mexican affairs, though this seems unlikely to outside observers

BATTLE OF THE ATLANTIC

-The invasion of several European colonial possessions in the Carribean by the Gulf and Confederacy sets the stage for the largest naval battle by tonnage in human history as the Union Navy sorties Force J under Admiral Cunningham for a showdown with Task Force 44 under Admiral Nimitz. Force J features five fleet carriers, four of which are modern types with armored flight decks, against three Axis fleet carriers with less armor but greater aircraft capacity, as well as four escorts. Both sides expect to fight this battle at standoff range, with Force J having an advantage in carrier durability and TF 44 having an advantage in aircraft when land-based units are factored in. Nimitz makes a big bet that a battle on his terms will allow him to wrest control of the Atlantic for himself and topple the British naval goliath once and for all
-To this end, a trap is laid to funnel Force J into the Windward Passage between Cuba and Hispaniola. The waters between Havana and Miami and between Hispaniola and Puerto Rico are mined, and air bases are constructed in the Lesser Antilles to increase the threat of bombing in this area, with the intent of funnelling the enemy into the trap. Finding the enemy to be slow in coming, Nimitz orders a feint conducted and detaches a pair of light cruisers to shell Belize City in British Honduras. This move alone does not deceive Cunningham, as submarines scouting forward of Force J have already found TF 44 assembling at Guantanamo Bay, though the subs dare not make a move due to the heavy destroyer presence. As Force J begins moving east, it becomes apparent that the battle will not be quite the set piece Nimitz had hoped for
-As Force J turns east for the Virgin Islands to enact its own plans, Confederate bombers based at Punta Cana sortie to intercept, tying down the carriers even if the bombs prove too inaccurate to cause any material damage. Taking advantage of the situation, the Kriegsmarine battlegroup in port at Wilmington take their chance to escape. The wounded Bismarck successfully reaches Tampa for repairs, while Tirpitz and Prinz Eugen make steam to join the action in the Carribean
-From this point, it is clear that neither side will have the element of surprise, and the engagement will be protracted. Union Marines land on Confederate-controlled Barbados and retake the island after brief fighting. While many of the carrier aircraft are supporting this action, the first of several attacks by “David” torpedo boats occurs as craft based on Martinique attack the perimeter of Force J and sink the light cruisers Argonaut and Bonaventure, at the expense of ten of the boats lost to the escorting destroyers. Barbados is to be maintained as a fallback position for aircraft to use should any carriers be sunk, as well as a seaplane base. Most notably, the action here exposes the Axis claims of heavy aircraft presence to be a ruse, as their intelligence reports had suggested
-Seeing this as a clear challenge, Nimitz orders TF 44 to engage before more of the hard won islands can be retaken, which would tilt the strategic initiative toward the Union. The battleships are sent forward of the carriers to establish a picket, which Cunningham also interprets to be the enemy making their move. The mastermind of Taranto, aware of the superiority of aircraft, orders raids on the battleships, kicking off the engagement in earnest
-By the time Axis carrier planes can respond, dozens of Albacore torpedo bombers and Skua dive bombers are upon the battleships. Alabama once again proves bizarrely immune to damage, weathering a torpedo strike and three bomb hits. Less fortunate are Tennessee and Prinz Eugen, which are both sent to the bottom, and Virginia, which withdraws at reduced speed after a torpedo hit floods one of her boiler rooms. However, in the meantime, two Confederate light carriers, whose existence the Union Navy intelligence reports were not even aware of, manage to grab the flank of Force J by heading along the Venezuelan coast, launching their own air raid that sends the Union carriers scrambling. The older and slower Béarn is unable to begin evasive maneuvers in time, and several TBD Devastators score torpedo hits, though disturbingly only one of the torpedoes actually explodes. Nevertheless, it is enough to send the aging ship to the bottom, as well as the nearby light cruiser Achilles
-This force then struggles to fend off a heavy retaliatory attack that sinks the CSS Valcour Island and a pair of escorting destroyers off Grenada, the first Axis carrier loss, though the engagement is overall a victory for Nimitz and allows the Confederates to set eyes on the enemy force and confirm its location
-Thanks in part to this attack, a wave of aircraft are launched from the Axis carriers against Force J. Led by the superior Buccaneer fighters, which quickly deal with the Combat Air Patrol, Vindicators and Devastators make runs on all four remaining carriers. Again, the Mark 13 torpedoes repeatedly fail to detonate after successful hits, and the armored flight decks of the British-designed carriers prove resilient to the dive bombers until several armor-piercing bombs strike Formidable. This starts a chain reaction in the hangar deck that quickly sets the ship ablaze beyond recovery. As the order is given to abandon ship, two torpedoes from the lurking CSS Manassas also strike Foch, which takes on a list and is forced to pull back to Barbados
-The battle seems all but won for the Axis when news arrives of a coup of Panama. Suddenly it becomes apparent why Cunningham waited so long to initiate the battle. A Federalist battle group led by the Federalist carrier USS Wasp has spent weeks circumventing South America as part of Operation Cartwheel and now has transited the canal from the Pacific to rendezvous with the Dutch cruiser De Ruyter. Forming Task Force 3, it also includes cargo ships carrying dozens of Piranha midget submarines
-”Taffy 3” quickly sets to work wreaking havoc on TF 44. Though flying somewhat inferior aircraft in inferior numbers, its deliberate timing means its strike wave arrives as the enemy’s aircraft are returning from their strikes against Force J and low on fuel. Aircraft are forced to ditch or land under fire, as the aging Langley is sunk by a pair of bomb hits and Chancellorsville is set ablaze when refuelling apparatus and carts of anti-aircraft shells are struck on the deck. A swarm of torpedo bombers and Piranha attacks are able to finish off Chancellorsville, but similar attacks directed at Ranger suffer the same problems with the Mark 13 torpedoes that had plagued TF 44 and score only one successful hit that is counter-flooded by the damage control team
-Though still having a fleet carrier and three light carriers to spare, Nimitz realizes that the game is up. He still possesses a materially superior force of battleships, but a massive disadvantage in carriers and aircraft. Unlike the Battle of the North Atlantic, the opposing sides’ surface ships have not seen each other throughout the engagement, and it is now obvious that the aircraft carrier is the truly decisive capital ship of this war. Rather than risk the remaining carriers and the remainder of the surface fleet, he must now retreat into the Gulf of Mexico, where air cover from Cuba will make an Allied pursuit simply too costly
 

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