Scouts Out!

Scouts Out!
C Troop musters for action

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The Battle of Centerville

Hi all,

I meant to do this post a while ago but Hurricane Sandy decided that she knew better... anyway here is the background and campaign rules for my Centerville Campaign.  I've already played scenario #1 and I'll be playing #2 later today.  

Background:  The Centerville Campaign

The Centerville Campaign is viewed by many historians as the opening gambit of the Liberty-American War of 2081.  While there were several other "police actions", "counter-insurgencies", and "provocations" going on at the same time it was on the equatorial island of Crossland that American and Republic of Liberty of forces engaged in the first formal battles of the Liberty-American War.

The Republic of Liberty has long claimed at least partial sovereignty over the Crossland Island colony by the virtue of being the successor to the French Union on the planet of Liberty.  The United States has long hotly contested this argument by asserting that the French Union sold its interests on Crossland to the US in the days proceeding the peace agreement between the Republic of Liberty and the French Union.  It is true that the FU did agree to transfer sovereignty over Crossland in exchange for an undisclosed, but substantial, monetary payment.  However no international/interstellar body has ever acknowledged the agreement and indeed, even to this day, lawyers are still arguing the point in international court!

The "agreement" between the US and the FU sparked heated protests from the Republic of Liberty and even led to a low level insurgency in the formerly jointly administered territories.  The US, which already had troops in these areas, launched a vigorous counterinsurgency campaign which saw many of the pro-republican partisans killed, jailed, or deported.  This lead to allegations from the Republic that the US was engaged in "ethnic cleansing" of Libertarian French "Habitants" in order to establish American settlements in the disputed lands.   This counterinsurgency effort was still on-going when the LRL's 2eme Brigade stormed onto the shores of Crossland Island.  This invasion was launched in concert with LRL supported uprisings in the northern counties of the Commonwealth.  In addition, the LRL's infant space fleet launched attacks against US Navy high-guard patrols above the planet.  These combined efforts rocked the American forces on their heels and left Liberty Command (LIBCOM, the joint services command on Liberty) in disorder and confusion.  

Indeed, the situation was very ripe for a massive invasion of the disputed territories.

Crossland:  The Opening Battles

In December 2181 US forces on Crossland Island were still heavily engaged in Operation Sudden Fury: an effort to finally break the insurgent siege of Centerville.  Earlier back in June Task Force Bataan, led by Brigadier David Wainwright, launched a massive assault from orbit and landed to the west and behind the Crossland insurgents who were laying siege to the city of Centerville and its vital spaceport.  The assault, supported by Navy frigates in orbit, broke the siege lines and sent the surviving rebels reeling back into the swamps in the Crossland River Basin which lay to the east of the city.  Task Force Bataan immediately gave chase and soon found itself scattered all across the eastern side of the island- split into platoon and strike group sized elements and garrisoning dozens of small Forward Operating Bases (FOBs).  The situation on Crossland quickly against US forces when the 2eme Brigade arrived.

During the early morning hours of December 7, 2081 three LRL battalions (21eme RI, 22 eme RI, and 23 eme RI)  landed, unopposed, on the northern shore of Crossland Island and swiftly began moving inland.  Only elements of C Company, 2/31st Infantry were in position to meet the invasion.  While C Company's counterattack delayed the LRL's advance for a short time, it was soon clear that there simply weren't enough forces available to seriously contest the LRL's advance.  General Wainwright had very little choice but to order his scattered Regular Army and Army National Guard troops to fall back on the island's captial: Centerville.  In addition, Wainwright ordered TF Bataan elements engaged in counterinsurgency operations around the Crossland Basin to move concentrate on Centerville for a stand against the LRL.  Finally the general called on LIBCON's reserve, the 11th MAU, to board their dropships and to reinforce Centerville from orbit.  

By December 9th, 2081 the LRL regiments were only a few miles outside of Centerville and only facing scattered resistance from Liberty ANG and Defense Force elements lead by US Special Forces A-team detachments.  Centerville was soon faced with three fast moving LRL battalions advancing on the city from the north, west, and the east.  Wainwright moved the scant forces under his command to cover the approaches to the city.  His only hope of saving the city was to delay the LRL forces long enough for the 11th MAU to come to the rescue.  To the north he deployed the remnants of C Company, 2/31 Infantry to cover the river crossing at Dover and to protect the National Guard Armory there.  To the west Wainwright moved C Troop, 1/26 Cav to screen the approaches along Highway 7.  Finally to the east the general moved up elements of 2/4th Marines and their CAAT platoon to screen the eastern approaches: Highway 7.  In reserve Wainwright only had a few sections of 2/4th Marines, one of which was moved to reinforce the 31st Infantry at Dover.  

The situation for the American forces in Centerville was as clear as it was desperate: All three defense lines MUST HOLD in order for the 11th MAU to land and counterattack.  Failure at any point would see LRL troops moving into the city center could lead to the fall of the vital aerospace port.

The Campaign

I'm looking at four linked scenarios.  The first three have LRL units attacking three different US defense forces:  a USA infantry platoon reinforced by Marines, a US Armored Cavalry platoon equipped with Valkyrie mecha, and a USCMC platoon with some HUMVEEs supporting them.  LRL forces will be roughly reinforced platoon sized forces standing in for the LRL "regiment" that is attacking the city of Crossland.  The final battle will be either an open-field action between a mechanized USCMC company (11th MAU) and a LRL company (standing in for the remaining LRL 2eme Brigade forces) or a urban clash between the surviving US forces and the LRL invaders.  

My first battle report will cover the battle at Dover (the Alamo).  My second will cover the clash between a mechanized LRL force and the US armored cavalry west of town.  The third will be a small town action with my USCMCs trying to defend the eastern approaches of Centerville.  The final action will depend on who wins the first three.  If the US suffers even one defeat then the LRL gets to invade Centerville and that action will resolve the campaign.  If the US gets at least a draw in all three actions then the LRL gets to face the 11th MEU in the open country east of town.  This will be a mechanized clash with tanks, apcs, and other vehicles.  

Prior to the scenario beginning, the US players can decide to commit their USCMC reserves (one USCMC section with an M577 APC) to the battle.  Once the reserve is committed the US play has no other reserves!  The LRL player has only the forces committed to the battle and no reserves.  However he does have access to indirect artillery support (three barrages in each battle) to represent their battalion mortar assets and the brigade's artillery assets.  The US player has a total of 6 artillery barrages that he can use however he wants in the campaign.  But once all six are used then he no longer has artillery support unless he wins/draws all three battles in which case he gets three new barrages to represent fire support from US Navy frigates in orbit.

More later!

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