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My Little Man's first real wargame play: Barbarossa Solitaire
Journal From Key German Leader Detailing the Rhineland War Discovered!!
Last week, a tremendous find was uncovered in Leipzig, Germany when Gunther Hoppner was renovating a new home he had just purchased and made an amazing discovery.
While knocking down a wall to make way for a larger living room, Mr. Hoppner discovered a journal tucked into the wall written by Hans Deiferdorf. Deiferdorf took over as Foreign Minister for Germany after the Putsch that occurred during the Rhineland War which removed Hitler from power along with all his cronies.
Excerpts of this amazing find appear below.
The die has been cast. Hitler has boldly decided to move on the Rhineland even though the Abwher has given him dozens of documents from our spies clearly warning that France will resist. And that is not all: my boss, von Ribbentropp, has told me that after seizing the Rhineland the plan is to capture Alsace-Lorraine and invade Poland at the same time. Do we really have the military resources to conduct two major campaigns at once?
We move swiftly into the Rhineland and a major offensive is launched into Alsace-Lorraine.
Our Panzers drive into Poland and Warsaw and Danzing quickly fall.
France declares war!!
Our actions convince Austria that joining us is wise. This will help us keep pressure on the Czechs. There are some rumblings in the Far East but nothing to concern us.
The French move very quickly and recapture A-L. I hear of rumblings among the army leaders. Those rumblings grow louder as Polish forces lash out and smash one of our mechanized forces in Warsaw. The Poles then joyfully reoccupy their capital.
Clearly this is not going to be as easy as our leader claims.
Romania sides with France bringing political clout due to their crisis areas.
Great Britain has joined the fray. Just what we needed. Perhaps I should speak with generals???
Big meeting as Adolf outlines new grandiose victory plan. I look about and spot a variety of expressions: worry… anger… joy….
The new plan calls for more attacks in France using our edge in panzers while after finishing Poland the new strategy is invade Romania and deprive France of the crisis centers. The Czechs will have to wait their turn.
Back into Alsace-Lorraine we go driving the French back. Warsaw is also retaken as another successful attack captures Brest-Livtosk. The Poles are now holed up in Silesa.
Bulgaria joins the allies. Britan’s commonwealth forces rally to the fight.
Reports coming from our spies in Italy saying Ethiopia has become a problem and the Italians have sent infantry forces to address the situation.
Greece decides to join our cause. Perhaps one too many pro French governments in the Balkans made them nervous? At least they can tie down Bulgarian troops.
Our leader gets a nice birthday present: no new French offensives. One assumes they are waiting for British forces to land on the continent.
Czechoslovakia joins the allies. Party crashers. This is a significant problem as we have stretched our forces out to the east and west.
Spoke to the Austrian FM and he says they are rushing their forces to the Czech border so we need not worry.
I still worry. The Czechs have Skoda and two crisis centers for political clout.
Woke last night with a terrifying thought: what if the Russians intervene now? Will they? Stalin is a tough character to judge.
So as we start the third month of the war we find ourselves as war with 5 nations while only being supported by Austria and Greece. Feels a bit like World War I really.
Decision made to attempt terror bombing of Metz. Total failure! Not only were our plans destroyed but the enemy went into complete defiance mode.
More bad news as the Civil War that had been brewing in Spain finally erupted.
Some good news today: Austrian forces moved into Bratislava.
Major offensive designed to clear the left bank of the Rhine of French troops took a beating as one mechanized division was mauled.
Some maneuvering by our intelligence forces has brought some success. Agents sent to Czechoslovakia to agitate the volk resulted in the Czechs having to send a force to deal with the problem.
Czechoslovakia has been the focus of a huge subversion campaign and fifth column forces have popped up in Bratislava to support our Austrian allies.
There have been rumblings from Finland as well but nothing concrete.
Speaking of rumblings, there has been some more putsch talk but very little movement.
Awoke this morning to a shocking development: British and French forces have invaded Belgium and Luxembourg!!! Apparently the Belgians put up quite a fight (sources tell us there was a real bloodbath at each location) but the road is now clear for the enemy to advance on Germany!
Good news all around as the Czech attempt to recapture Bratislava is stopped while at the same time the Poles attempt to drive into Brest-Livtosk also failed. The Polish counterattack did inflict losses on our forces. The Poles are certainly a pesky people!!!
Yugoslavia has decided to throw in their lot with us. Although they are weak they could be useful as leverage on Italy. The Duce has been very quiet so far. Perhaps that Ethiopian thing is not as minor as they claim…
Reports have reached my desk that the French government is unstable and the country is moving toward a general strike. I work with the Abwher to launch psywar ops in France but the results are disappointing as our enemy continues to stand firm.
I have spent the last few nights without sleep. I have been trying to discern the mind of Stalin, a Herculean task if there ever was. If the communists stab us in the back now…
I do wonder if Stalin is waiting for us and the French to wear ourselves down. Or maybe he is waiting for the right moment to make a quick land grab?
The other thing that keeps my nights sleepless is Italy. Il Duce talks big (and a lot) but no one knows what he will do. We must consolidate soon and force the Poles to surrender otherwise we will be ill prepared if the nightmare scenario of both the USSR and Italy joining the allies becomes reality.
Looks like more sleepless nights for me.
We finished up in the east today as German forces again entered Brest-Livtosk and captured Upper Silesa to finally crush the Poles.
So excited I can hardly write! Italy has joined our side! Now the French will be spread thin. This makes their Belgian adventure seem very ill advised.
Rumblings from France on a general strike. Part of the agitation may be coming from American President Roosevelt’s announcement that the US would remain neutral in this conflict.
Putsch talk continues to be just that.
Spies are reporting that the allies will attempt an all or nothing military strike soon. The French feel it is the only way to “beat the clock” of general strike which is beginning to tick loudly.
I have just been to a briefing and the biggest conclusion: we are too thin in Poland to resist the Russians. Perhaps it is time to begin secretly reaching out to the Soviets…
British success in driving into the Ruhr. We must recapture that pivotal area!
The months closes on a high note as a general strike has swept across France. The government hangs by a thread. So the new question becomes: can we inflict enough losses on the French to force them onto the defensive so we can turn our attention to the Bolshevik menace?
High command rushes forces to the west to recapture the Ruhr. Fortunately there is no several damage to the facilities of the region.
Our Austrian allies continue to press the Czechs but without success.
Italian forces repulsed in their invasion of France. Tension is building in the country.
Dark day. Stalin has announced mobilization and support of the western allies. Is this the end? Pressure now on and the putsch is gaining momentum.
Hungary casts their lot with us. Nice but how much help will they be against the bear?
I am woken at 4 a.m. by pounding on my front door. I open it to find several high ranking generals who inform me that I am now the new foreign minister! The leader and his cronies are gone! This is good for the Fatherland but can we now win this war he dragged us into?
End of the a crazy month. It has been a dark, dark time for us.
The Czechs have captures Vienna. British reinforcements continue to arrive to bolster the western front. Soviet armies are advancing on Brest-Livtosk.
The one good piece of news is we are hearing rumors that Stalin is mistrustful of his army leaders. If we can find a way to feed his fear, we might be able to get the Boksheviks out of the war.
Trying desperately to save the situation. Agitation inside USSR is nearly impossible. Bad news as Austrian attempt to recapture Vienna fails.
The Italians have broken through! They are marching on Lyon. This success has convinced the military high command we have time to strike France with a powerful blow and trade space in the east before wheeling that direction. Will it be in time??
Our massive offensive against France yielded mixed results: failure in Luxembourg but success in Belgium.
Our southern allies are starting to flex their muscles. The Yugoslavians are headed to Austria to reinforce there. And the Greeks are finally driving toward Albania. Don’t know what took them so long!!
My first real laugh since the war began. I was handed a message from the League of Nations protesting the illegal conflict. Better late than never I guess.
5th column elements have again stirred trouble among the Czechs resulting in another Czech infantry force being disbanded.
Recon flights indicate French troops marching south to cover Lyon while British troops take their place in the north. The enemy offensive has been slowed and it has been hard for the French to find replacements among the strike that continues to rock the nation.
Soviet forces are converging on Brest-Livtosk. They will attack shortly.
The Soviets overwhelmed the brave German lads in B-L. We are sending some panzers to try to rectify the situation.
Just before midnight a message arrived from the east. German troops reported seeing Soviet forces leaving, heading toward Russia. Working diplomatic lines to see what is going on.
The Soviet Union is out! Stalin has begun what appears to be a purge of his army. So the rumors were true! Great stroke of luck for us. Now we can press France hard. I believe we will be able to end this conflict now on favorable terms. Our panzers are now the key as the French have used up all their mechanized forces and the British have only one left.
Momentum is truly on our side now. As we transfer forces to the west, Greek troops are preparing their final assault on Tirana and Austrian forces have recaptured Vienna. Brest-Livtosk has been taken without a fight as well. Happy days!
Another massive offensive in the west (how many times did we hear that just twenty years ago?) The French forces are creaking as we now have cleared the area south of Alsace-Lorraine and moved further into Belgium. I expect to hear from the allies soon.
Bratislava has fallen.
The British threw all their forces into a desperate attack south of Antwerp. They drove us back with losses to our mechanized forces but we kept them from breaking out.
How much longer can the enemy hold out? This must know that without Soviet help it is only a matter of time before we prevail. The putsch here at home did throw the country into turmoil, but it also got the German people behind the new government who pledged to end things quickly one way or another.
Coordinated offensive launched by all allies today. The results were astounding!
Italy captured Lyon
Greek troops enter Tirana
Our attack on Metz ended in a blood bath but we can afford to take losses the French cannot.
Last desperate offensives of the allies fail. I reach out through Switzerland to try to end the war. By my calculation we a huge advantage and should be able to get major concessions from the enemy.
The French and British reached out to us. We have agreed to end the fighting on the following conditions:
1. French and British colonies will be respected
2. We will hold on to Alsace-Lorraine and Italy will give back Lyon but get Marseille in return.
3. Belgium becomes a German protected state.
4. We will hold on to Polish territory.
5. The Czechs will ceded us the Sudetenland, Austria Bratislava but will retain the rest of their land and their independence.
6. Albania will be absorbed by Greece.
7. Romania and Bulgaria have defense agreements with Germany.
So the Rhineland War is won. Now we must prepare to turn east. The bear will not slumber in his cave forever…
David G. Cox Esq.
Do what you can, with what you've got, where you are.
Why was there a putsch to remove Hitler. It looks as though his plans won out in the end.
My Little Man's first real wargame play: Barbarossa Solitaire
Well if you look at what was happening before the July 20th putsch, Germany was in bad shape. After that, they began to get the upper hand. Now, was this a result of a major shift in strategy both military and diplomatic? We can't say for sure as this is only one source on the conflict. In future, perhaps other primary sources will surface and shed some light on exactly what changed after the putsch.