We left the game at Turn 10 with a view to pushing Northwards and securing Benghazi. With enough armour committed by Turn 18 we managed to push out the defenders and secure Benghazi. I had to fan some troops out eastwards to push enemy stragglers back and to assault and take Msus. With Benghazi in my control, I could keep the armoured offensive push going along the coast and look towards taking Barce.
During Turn 21 my well fuelled speedy armour had forced its way into Barce, securing more Victory Points. My Afrika Korps were now at the Northern most tip of the coastal road, which follows eastwards towards the port of Tobruk!
Sadly, on Turn 21, the British pushed my weakened forces out of Msus!
With my supply lines becoming stretched along the coast, it might be time to fill up what trucks I can, and then send the depot back south to fill up at El Agheila (a long journey away). The more I push forward, the more I’m starting to appreciate the scarcity and necessity of these vital fuel reserves in this desert conflict.
With my secondary force (limited armour) I pushed eastwards past El Haseiat and with some effort had taken Ben Gama using the brute force of a single armoured unit to counter British light armour in the way. As you can see there is some British activity to the south of the Air field, and I begin a gruelling march for foot soldiers towards that area to try and flush these stragglers out.
Taking an overview look at the area, you can see the progress I have made in the last 10 turns. With the RAF harrying me along the coastal road (draining away valuable movement points from my units). I’m strong at the advancing spearhead end, but my middle trying to hold the British and ultimately push back into Msus is proving decidedly weak, and I have little troops to spare, if I’m to keep moving towards Gazala and Tobruk.
I have however dug deep into the desert heartlands and have secure Ben Gama, hopefully to provide a zone of protection around my fuel supply lines from El Agheila. The secondary sweeping force seems a bit of a luxury now, and perhaps I should have pushed hard along the main roads of attack? I would’ve had more troops engaged at Msus and I wouldn’t have felt so vulnerable just south of Benghazi. Tactical use of Mines attempt to block any resistance from moving in directions that would isolate my limited forces there.
Finally, the Campaign Status at the end of Turn 21.
As you can see, Turn 20 I have 25 Victory Points, but have lost Msus to a British Counterattack, resulting in 22 Victory Points. This is my first major loss of the campaign, and it stings – I’m doing so well along the coastal road.
Lots of RAF bombing is costing me dear in movement points, and fatigued underpowered units can’t rest in Benghazi just yet, until I clear the enemy in the surrounding areas.
I’m going to have to focus my attention on getting troops northwards to support the main offensive, rather than perform these paranoid housekeeping missions in the deep desert heartlands!
Join me next time, and see if I can re-capture Msus, and push towards Gazala!
On to … Conflicts: Rommel and Afrika Korps (RAK) AAR – Part 3