Welcome to 1944. The Eastern Front is well behind schedule, as the Russians were historically almost back to the pre-Barbarossa lines. I’m working on it, starting with the fighting near Vyazma. Slowly but surely, I’m advancing at about two or three net hex gains per turn. At this rate, I’m hoping to get near Smolensk by the end of January. The longer this fight can last, the more replacements the Germans will be forced to use up, weakening their proficiency and ability to sustain losses elsewhere. In this sector it’s all about the artillery. I’m concerned that it might be getting worn out a bit, as its readiness is lower each turn. But I can’t afford to rotate too many artillery divisions back to the rear each turn to recoup.
It’s been much slower going here than at Vyazma, but that’s more of a result of me not committing the same amount of mechanized divisions to this offensive. The front lines are steadily moving east and south, and I hope to reach the rear of Voronezh by the end of the month.
Sector: Southern Italy
The 34th and 9th Divisions have broken through on the eastern side of Salerno, while the 1st and 2nd Armored are in the town. But the big news comes from the eastern side of the boot, as the Australians and New Zealanders punched a hole in the German Ofanto Line long enough for the British Armour to roll through. I’m guessing a pretty vigorous counter attack will push my men back across the river, but this shows it can be done.