Outcome of our campaign at Legions PGH
As discussed before there should be a different way to do this, but ... Our store-only battles resulted in a resounding PACT Tactical Victory. A final attempt at regaining some points by Fitzi failed at 2nd Alme. PACT won 15 games, drew 6 and lost 1. We didn't reach Munich or Amsterdam but did take out the Ruhr/Essen/Cologne complex after forcing a NATO withdrawal from Leipzig and Hannover. Completely different from on-line. The map above depicts the final situation with tan or green counters marking the NATO final positions and orange counters marking the PACT front lines.
So what's the point of these maps? A touch of history, and a touch of reality. I've preached about logistics issues, and won't bother with that here. What this is about is what the Soviets call the correlation of forces. And limitations of time and distance.
The PACT began our little war with 27 Soviet divisions plus 6 East German and 8 Czech and 10 Polish. Early mobilization would put 5 East German, 2 more Czech and 2 more Polish plus an additional 9 Soviet CAT A divisions. Western TVD also had 3 Air Assault Divisions, 5 Air Assault Brigades, 3 Tank Brigades, 9 Tank Regiments, a Naval Landing Brigade, plus two pint-sized Polish Airmobile and Naval Landing Divisions. That's 70+ Soviet division equivalents.
The NATO forces were 3 British, 2 Netherlands, 1.5 Belgian (4 brigades), 11 German, and the equivalent of 5 US Divisions at start. Britain emptied its larder and put 4 more divisions in the field, and America's M+10 essential force put 1 Airborne, 1 Marine, and 10 heavy brigades configured as 4 divisions to achieve the '10 divisions in 10 day' standard. There were also Danes, but they disappeared so fast as to probably have not completed mobilization. 22 divisions. Then 28 when all the Americans arrived, 32 with the extra Brits. And the Dutch, Belgians each put another division equivalent up. Finally the Germans conceivably could mobilize 6 more divisions, although the mob sectors and equipment for two disappeared in the early days of the first campaign. So 40 NATO divisions are now in the field.
Didn't forget the French. They're presumably in the Rhine Valley, waiting for SACEUR to make a French General commander of a new Army Group, called SOUTHAG. They had 15 divisions on paper, but 2 of them were DLBs with only 4 battalions AND could only be fielded by closing their military school system. The other 8 divisions that composed French First Army consisted of 6 maneuver battalions compared to the German 14 and American 14. In short, a French corps is really a division for anybody else.
And then there are more Americans, right? Well, yes, but, the only way to get them to Europe is by sealift, and the existing sealift in 1989 was only adequate to move one division at a time, every ten days. There were less than 90 C5/C5As in 1985, and they so moving a complete heavy division by air was virtually impossible, and if attempted, with the wing root issues limiting them to one tank per sortie, a heavy division by air would require about 500 sorties, or the same ten days...
Time has some interesting implications. Above was an example of my figuring for a march reversal for a Soviet Tank Brigade. But you couldn't use that same projection to move a PACT army or NATO Corps. Why? That tank brigade had 150 tanks, 160 BMPs, 96 SPH, and probably another 200 soft skins or roughly 650 total vehicles. A column at least 30 kilometers long! A PACT army or NATO corps trying the same trick can expect to occupy the entire road space between the two points on the above map. Taking 24 hours for the entire column to pass a single point, and at least two full days to make the movement. Three before all the vehicles would be fueled.
Another thing affected by time is strategic movement. I walked the deck of the above vessel and watched it load cargo (trucks of 25th ID) and the process of driving stuff onto it and tying the vehicles down took hours. Then the Paige chugged along at its warp speed of 10 knots with a following wind in flat seas, taking almost a full day to travel from Honolulu to Hilo. Delivering the vehicles was a three day process. Much less load planning the Paige, and the trucks. So mounting an amphibious operation out of Hamburg to northern Denmark was at least a week long effort, based on personal experience with the Paige and 6 Army-owned LCUs.
So why the lecture? In our campaign, there are suddenly a whole bunch more NATO points floating around. And NATO forces are running loose on the map turning in unexpected directions, and attacking with full effectiveness 360. This takes time, Comrades, and for every tick of the clock the Soviets are capable of pouring more troops into the theater. 5 divisions a week with NATO air operations pounding Poland; 10 during a ceasefire.
Anyway, I would advocate BF/BOW put a time scale, and interject some reality into troop movements like we just saw. The French couldn't intervene in Leipzig or Brandenburg in less than a week of movement but could affect things in Frankfurt fairly quickly - 100 kilometers, no enemy lines, etc. versus 500+ kilometers. And lifting troops out by sea...a week. And no matter how foggy the war, we can all see the sun rise and set, and thus these limits should be known