A column of 3rd Polish Division has to reach a critical point ahead of 5th Dutch Division
As fighting along the Ijssel stalls, the 5th Dutch Division shifts south to seal off the PACT penetration and encounters 3rd Polish Motorized east of Nijmegen
Pulkownik Niktnie was disappointed but not surprised at the direction from Army HQ. Intermittent fuel deliveries meant the attack was taking too long. 1st Polish Army could do one thing at a time, and driving further west was just exacerbating the problem. Fortunately considerable stocks had been built up during the ceasefire so the situation was not yet serious, but holding a couple thousand hectares of Dutch farmland was not worth the expense. 3rd Poles had been instructed to cover the withdrawal of 1st Poles back to Germany, and now Niktnie's command was disengaging as well, after supervising the removal of usable stocks from a Dutch depot at Berghem. The NATO artillery and tank ammunition was now burning in the distance, the fires spreading to the town itself. And the Dutch 5th Division, doubtless infuriated at the resulting damage, was trying to cut Niktnie off. He would have to run a gauntlet to regain his infantry screen while protecting the last of the support echelon vehicles.
We played Gauntlet as it seemed like a logical continuation of the last E-battle. Also looked like a potential bloodbath. Again, the counters on paper maps are the battle. I went for the Poles instead of the mixed list of last time. BH played the same Dutch force with a different arrangement of platoons.
Set up after spearheads. The left picture is the Poles, twisted slightly from 90 degrees to get most of them in. The right picture is the Dutch. In the Dutch picture, you are looking east-west. You can see the Polish right flank on both pictures. The objective is to the right of the Dutch. In this scenario the Defender moves first.
BH probably made his error when he deployed one platoon of Leos to the south. They did handsomely shooting up a 'company' but weren't present for the decisive fight. Since meeting engagement rules applied, BH finished setting up well before I did. He had to worry about me setting up on the crest of the ridge with my T72s and being in firing position with all of them on turn 1. That force made it too risky. But after set up they should have cruised to support their buddies instead of cherrypicking T55s. After that it was dice, and I had him outnumbered 2:1 and didn't underperform (no Gulag ammo this time).
Pulownik Niktnie shook his head. 6 T55s had been knocked out, plus two BRDM AT systems, and 1 BMP. Two of the T55s had been total losses, with 5 dead crew. Two others could have been recovered if he had the time. At least two were moving away under their own power, one with a damaged fire control system and one with the engine coughing and sputtering. His crews were transferring ammo out of the broken tanks preparatory to leaving, and stripping off the lasers. One Spandrel was reparable, the other just melted parts. That one, they could tow. The Dutch had lost a dozen tanks and two of their cavalry vehicles, all burning merrily after his scouts pulled the wounded out of the ones that hadn't caught the first time. Better for both sides if we hadn't meet here.