North - The German offensive here has reached my main line. Like clockwork, they had little trouble punching a hole in my position, one hex inland from the coast. While I had to expect some sort of breakthrough at some point, it would have been nice if my line held for at least one hex before cracking. The 4th Guards Tank should be able to restore the line, as I brought them up here as a reserve for this very situation.
South - At first, the situation here was bad, with the Finns marching right around my left flank along the coast. But the swift arrival of reinforcements, combined with the gallant stand by the __ Division, held the Axis in check. Now the 5th Shock Army and 55th Army have arrived. Once they are off the trains and in position, I’m hopeful this sector will move from “dangerous” to “monitored.”
Sector: Yelets-Kursk - OPERATION: MEGAPHONE
All this fighting has netted my offensive about five hexes. Not exactly a wild success. But the Axis here are being worn down significantly, including the loss of an entire German division just west of Yelets. Some reinforcements have arrived, with the biggest chunk in the form of the IV Luftwaffe Field Division from Germany. I’m guessing the rest of any reinforcements have stayed back and began digging into a defensive line west and south of where my offensive is concentrating. The lack of speedy progress by my forces have allowed Mark ample time to plan his defense and likely major counterattack.
Sector: The Caucasus
This area took a turn for the worse in two spots. The four-army force along the coast can barely hold up against the lightest attacks, and will have to fall back to the last inches of the mountains. After that, it’s a clear shot to T’Bilisi for the Axis. The other, more dangerous spot is in the mountain pass, where a divisions from the 51st Op Group has broken and fallen back. This was a huge stopper in the drain, but now the Germans have an open back door into this area. Reinforcements are on the way, but now with the situation becoming dire, I’m afraid it won’t be enough. Baku is still safe, but the loss of T’Bilisi would be up there with the loss of Grozny.
This could be one of the strongest positions the Axis occupy, as all of the units are fortified and in urban hexes. I’ve tried to dislodge them with naval and artillery bombardment, but nothing seems to work. Once I work the V Corps around the southern flank, I hope the attacks from two sides will help wear them down more quickly.
NW Europe: The Germans have increased their supply and earned minus-15 (that’s good for them, bad for me) EEV Points. So I’ll have to step up the strategic bombing campaign if I want to have any sort of effect on the German war effort supporting its troops in the field.
Libya: The I and V Corps are on the outskirts of Tripoli, where a lone Italian garrison occupies the city. That unit is fortified and has good supply, but with a few good punches, should fall.