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Subject: Russian Defeat Carries Seeds of Allied Victory rss

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Philip Thomas
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This was an ACTS/Cyberboard game between myself and James Z. James was playing the Central. This was the 17th full game of Pursuit of Glory campaign scenario with another player that I have finished. We used the 8 card hand variant for this game.

Russian Defeat Carries Seeds of Allied Victory

Fall 1914

I opened with my standard alternative opening, playing Russo-British Assault for Ops, occupying Abadan, Ahwaz and Amara, and setting up for Secret Treaty with the Russians. I also moved the troops in Tiflis up to the front line. James played Parliamentary Enquiry for SR, covering Eleskirt and Sannaiyat, the latter with 3 elite divisions. I played Secret Treaty, taking Teheran, Hamadan and Qum. He played Pan-Turkism, covering Alexandretta, advancing the elites in Damascus to Beersheba and attacking and reconquering Amara.

I played Kitchener. James attacked Ahwaz and Oltu, taking Ahwaz. Panicking slightly, I picked up the beach-head off Abadan and then moved the Russians, capturing Isfahan, organizing II Turkistani Corps at Batum, and attacking Van. Jihad brought Laz, Bawi and Jangali, while the Anzacs appeared in Egypt. James played Persian Push for Rps and I used Sphere of Influence to reinforce Tabriz. James organized III Corps in Van and VIII Corps in Cizre, moving troops up to the Suez Canal. During attrition Shushter became CP controlled and in the Tribal Warfare Check the Bawi returned to the display.


Winter 1915

MOs were RU and No BR.

The Allies began with Blockade. James played German Military Mission, placing trenches at Kum Kale, Adana, Smyrna and Bandirma. Churchill was stopped at Maidos. James used some SR to bring elites to Gaza. I played Enver Goes East, forcing attacks on Khoy and Sarikamis. The Sarikamis attack took heavy casualties but was succoured by Reserves to the Front. The attack on Khoy eliminated a TU elite divison and reduced III Corps. James moved the Gaza troops up to Nekhi and X Corps to Erzerum. I played Project Alexandria for RPs, he played Fresh Recruits to flip IX Corps and X Corps.

Russian Reinforcements were followed by Goeben and Egyptian Coup with the final card play being Liberate Suez, with the Senussi destroying the RNAC and the Indians forced to retreat from Suez, though the Turks declined to advance. At the same time the Turks successfully attacked Abadan. During Tribal Warfare the Senussi returned to the display.

Spring 1915

MOs were British Empire for the Allies and TU for the Turks, Max TU RPs 25.

I began with Grand Duke to Tiflis, which was followed by Turkish Reinforcements, 6 Turkish divisions in Erzincan, Harput and the Reserve. I played Russo-British Assault for War Status only. TU IV Corps organized in Erzincan. I played Allied Solidarity, taking Salonika. James played Bull’s Eye Directive, attacking Sarikamis, Ardahan and Southern Persia with extra troops from the Reserve. Sarikamis and Ardahan were taken, and an attack on Kagizman followed, wiping out the Russian divisions there. An attack on Romani ran into Sandstorms.

James used German Intrigues in Persia for SR, moving several divisions to Jaffa. We both played for Rps (Verdun, Project Alexandria) and I redeployed troops to Persia and India. TU V Corps was organized at Jaffa.

Summer 1915

MOs were British Empire and TU. Max TU RPs 23.

I began with Lawrence, taking Shushter with the Russians (and so losing a point for entering Arabistan). James attacked Seneh, destroying the Russian division there. I moved troops to Saqqiz and attacked Ardahan, drawing. James moved his troops away from Ardahan. Russian Reinforcements preceded German Subs in the Med and I played Armenian Uprising for RPs.

Turkish Reinforcements allowed James to organize XIV Corps in Erzincan. Kitchener’s Invasion landed at Thermalikos Bay, James played Enver-Falkenhayn Summit for RPs, and I attacked Romani, which was taken despite Surprise by the Turks in Jifjaffa. The Turks ended the turn by pulling back from Jifjaffa and reinforcing Ahwaz. The Laz returned to the display during the Tribal Warfare Check.

Fall 1915

Meso/Persia and RU MOs, TU Max RPs on 19.

I began with Asquith/Lloyd George Coalition, placing the cavalry division in Southern Persia. James played Parvus to Berlin. I played Arab Revolt and No Prisoners, but did not take Mecca. James however pulled out of the Hejaz, using SR to garrison Medina. The Gallipoli Invasion landed on Lemnos and Bulgaria entered the war. I attacked Ahwaz and James attacked Saqqiz and Belgrade, capturing the latter. Murray Took Command and the CPs attacked Nis. I attacked Oltu and James captured Nis and Skopje, triggering the fall of Serbia. James was now at Total War.

Winter 1916

None and TU MOs TU Max Rps on 19.

I began with Romania. James redeployed troops to Oltu and Sehneh. We both played for RPs (Salonika Invasion and Jihad Supremacy). I moved troops to Kagizman. Turkish-Arab reinforcements arrived. The Russian Winter Offensive attacked Oltu Sarikamis and Sehneh, running into Ataturk at Oltu and taking Sarikamis. Djemal Crushed the Secret Societies, attacking Craiova. The Serbs returned to Lemnos. Bucharest fell and the British captured Athens, bringing Greece into the war on Turkey’s side. James moved troops up to Doiran and lost a VP for missing his MO this turn.


Spring 1916

Meso Persia and RU MOs. TU Max RPs on 16

Indian Reinforcements arrived, Cavalry going to Athens and Specials to Lemnos. The CPs attacked and conquered Cernavoda and Constanta. I attacked Oltu and Seneh, taking Oltu. XV Corps organized in Bayburt and the CPs destroyed the Serbs at Veles. Both sides played for Rps (Allenby, Kaiserschlacht). I moved troops to Jifjaffa and Khoy and Talaat Pasha Reformed his Cabinet. I attacked and took El Arish using Tanks and the Royal Flying Corps. Turkish-Arab Reinforcements arrived along with a Trench in Gaza and the Armenian Uprising broke out in Kayseri. James ended with some moves in the Balkans, capturing Ploesti.

Summer 1916

British Empire MO for Allies. TU Max RPs at 13.

I began by entrenching in Athens, moving some Serb divisions to Greece, and organizing 2 Serb LCUs on Lemnos. The Persian Uprising broke out, taking Qum, with the Bakhtiari taking Isfahan. I played D’Eseperey for RPs and Mission To Afghanistan brought the Marsh Arabs to Qurna. Russian Reinforcements arrived, boosting War Status. James moved troops to Sivas to deal with the Armenians, who promptly ran to Afyon while the Caucasian Cavalry Corps was formed in Saqqiz (illegally, but neither of us spotted that at the time).

James redeployed troops to contain the Armenians. I was defeated at Van and Sehneh, losing Baratov. Caucasian Army Reforms placed two Corps in Eskisehir. I organized VII Caucasian Corps in Eleskirt, and attacked Erzerum and Isfahan, destroying the Bakhtiari. The Turks destroyed the Armenian Uprising at Afyon and drew at Saqqiz despite the help of the Army of Islam.

Fall 1916

No MO. TU Max RPs at 13, Russian Revolution imminent.

I began with attacks at Erzerum and Seneh. Jafar Pasha allowed the Turks to slip away from Seneh. Turkish troops moved towards the Russian front and the Persian Uprising took Teheran. Dunsterforce and the South Persia Rifles arrived in Eastern Persia and Yildirim Offensive was played for RPs. I attacked Erzerum and Kermanshah, destroying the fort at Erzerum, but was prevented from taking the space by Confused Orders.

More troops then moved to Erzerum, while XVI Corps was organized in Medina. I attacked Erzerum again, and moved troops to Sulemaniye. The Turks redeployed troops to Khanikan and the Reserve. I attacked Teheran and Kirkuk, destroying the Persian Uprising but running into Water Shortage at Kirkuk. The two Caucasian Corps arrived at Diyarbarkir and the turn ended with the Salonika Invasion landing on Lemnos, drawing Indian troops from Bahrein and Baluchistan there as well, and Unrestricted Submarine Warfare played for RPs. The Revolution began.

Winter 1917

British Empire (for Allies) MOs TU Max RPs at 12.

I began Indian Army Reinforcements, landing Tigris Corps in Southern Persia. James played for RPs (Gorlice-Tarnow). I moved the troops from Southern Persia, recapturing Abadan and securing Isfahan, and organized 2nd Corps on Lemnos. James moved troops to Mosul and Malazgirt. Lloyd George Took Command.

The 2nd Caucasian Corps reached Suj Bulak. Turkish War Weariness set in. The Turks attacked and captured Urmia. My attack on Basra was prevented by Mosquitoes, and I organized FAO1 on Lemnos. James moved troops to Gaza and Amman and abandoned Basra. I captured Basra and attacked and captured Kossaima. James redeployed some troops in the Balkans. Fao fell during the siege phase and I declared Romanian Collapse.


Spring 1917

Balkans MO TU Max RPS at 10

I began with Arab Desertion. The Turks destroyed a Russian division in Bayazit. I moved the Russians to cover the gap and attacked Doiran. The Yildirim appeared, Falkenhayn moving to Constantinople. Indian Reinforcements arrived, 3rd Corps going to Lemnos. Turkish Left Wing Group arrived in Baghdad. We both played for RPs (D’Esperey, British War Weariness).

I landed 3 Corps at Besika Bay and 3 at Cape Helles, while my attack on Qurna hit Mosquitoes. James opted to hold me at Kum Kale and Krithia, allowing me to come ashore at Seddul Bahr. I also attacked Shaiba and Kum Kale with Maude appearing for the Kum Kale attack, but Kum Kale held out. James reinforced Kum Kale and attacked Florina, advancing the GE-BU XI Army into the space.

Summer 1917

Egypt MO TU Max RPs at 6

I began by landing the Serbs at Larissa to block XI Army and landing Indian 2nd Corps and 2 Special Indian divisions on the beach-head off Smyrna, which was unoccupied. James could only reach Manisa with defenders. He also attacked at Koprukoy and Kagizman, destroying Russian Corps there and Yudenich. I moved to besiege Smyrna and pulled VII Caucasian Corps back to cover the gaps James had opened.

More Turkish attacks in Russia followed with the Turks gaining Ardahan. Allenby arrived, the troops going to Egypt. James destroyed the fort at Kars, playing Czar’s Armories for much needed RPs. I attacked Kum Kale using Royal Flying Corps and Pugnacity and Tenacity. The Turks held out, but only a division and Falkenhayn remained to defend the shoreline. The Turks took Alexandropol.

I took Kum Kale, capturing Falkenhayn, and moved the Russians further back. The Turks captured Tiflis and Julfa, placing Tabriz and a Russian cavalry division there Out Of Supply and besieged Batum. I organized two Corps in Egypt and advanced inland from Kum Kale, losing a VP for missed MOs. VPs were now 12. The Turks pulled back from Krithia to Maidos and continued to advance into Russia, taking Salyani and Shemakha, so that the Transcaucasians were forced to squeeze in tight around Batum. Smyrna fell during the siege phase, as did Batum, and the loss of Trabriz brought VPs to 13.

Fall 1917

Meso-Persia MO, TU Max RPs at 6

I organized a 3rd Corps in Egypt and attacked Qurna. The Turks occupied El Arish and captured Hamadan. I advanced on the Gallipoli front to Krithia, Ezine, and Canakkale, which the French besieged, and attacked Manisa, where the Turks held on grimly. Turkish troops began to converge on the Gallipoli area from the Balkans and Caucasus fronts, but those in Persia marched on, taking Qum. I attacked Maidos and Manisa and was defeated by Ataturk at Maidos but took Manisa.

The troops in Maidos withdrew to Gallipoli and the Turks attacked and captured Teheran, bringing Vps to 15. I deployed several strong divisions to Eastern Persia, and the Turks switched attention to Batum, bringing troops together at Shemakha. I played for RPs (Massed Cavalry Charge). The Turks attacked and captured Batum. I advanced to Maidos, was held up at EL Arish by Water Shortage and took Balikesir and Qurna. James’ last move was 1 OP to bring II Corps from Adrianople to Bandirma.

Maidos and Canakkale fell in the siege phase, making Vps a slightly better 14. James continued to take his negative RPs directly, reducing units in Russia which were out of the combat zone.

Winter 1918

Balkans MO, TU Max RPs at 6.

I gathered my 3 Corps in Egypt (BR XX and XXI and the Anzac Desert Corps) at Romani. James pulled out of El Arish as TU XI Corps arrived in Eskisehir from the Caucasus. I moved to EL Arish. James played for RPs (Yildirim Offensive). I attacked Nasirya, moved troops next to Gallipoli and attacked James at Gaza with Haversack Ruse. Firing first, I destroyed the single LCU there, meaning the defenders fired on the SCU table and I captured the fort. At this point James surrendered, for he had run out of divisions in his Reserve and was evidently about to lose Syria as well as Western Anatolia.

Overview

On the other hand, his forces were poised to invade Central Asia and open up the Jihad route to India. The Turkish triumph in Russia was bought at a price of too many troops away from the Gallipoli area, although I left my invasion dangerously late- Unrestricted Submarine Warfare would have left me with large numbers of troops on Lemnos which could only have been channelled into the Balkans, a very different game. I was able to plan for Haversack Ruse because of the earlier play of Confused Orders at Erzerum (which ensured the Russian Revolution started on schedule, so may have been worth it), but also because of the advantages of$ the 8-card hand.
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Larz Welo
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Las Cruces
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Great work. The luck involved with that kind of late war massed invasion from Lemnos into Gallipoli and Anatolia is pretty high, but worth taking if you can make it work.
 
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