Lake Rwenbezi War

Discussion in 'The World Stage' started by Gunnland, Apr 14, 2019.

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  1. Gunnland

    Gunnland FTR

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    Palm Sunday
    Over Lake Rwenbezi
    Between Port Stanley and Loago

    Helicopter gunships swung low over Lake Rwenbezi heading east, their rotors creating choppy whitecaps beneath them. RRF Schwarzhabicht helicopters followed them, Reiver Light Infantry soldiers legs hanging out of them so that they looked like mechanical cockroaches. Colonel Callum Marlow hoped a storm would not roll in that afternoon. A fifty-fifty.

    The aerial assault was mostly for the cameras, but it would hit League of Loagan Communist forces near the Azraq-Loago border from the south. Most of the 6,000 RLI troops were on trucks trundling through Azraq, north of Lake Rwenbezi. If all went to according to plan, the RLI would have a foothold in western Loago to fight the LLC. If not... well, Marlow didn't want to think about having to use his reserves so soon.

    They wouldn't expect it in Holy Week. Just like in '79, when we hit the snails on Palm Sunday and they never recovered. Colonel Marlow was relieved not to be in Chinde with all the bigwigs for the 50th Anniversary of Independence: the snails' countess, the Gunnish princeling, the fat black prime minister woman. Ian Smith dead and the men of '79 forgotten. What had independence been for?

    And what is this shit for?
    Colonel Marlow wasn't sure why Prime Minister Butler had decided to risk war with Loago at this moment. Comrade Georges had been in effective control of northern Port Stanley for decades. Sure, there had been some unpleasant spat between pro-government and anti-government Fante militias in Oriel, but then again the blacks were always fighting each other for whatever reasons. Mud Town had sent some toys down and then sent Hika Qiltu packing. But Marlow wondered if the real reasons weren't hidden behind the big concrete walls to the east, in that great cement fist rammed up eastern Himyar's ass. And this gave him pause.

    The truth would out. For a while at least, it would be time for shooting communists and flesh-eating RANU pygmies and Loagans. His three favorite things.
     
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  2. Gunnland

    Gunnland FTR

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    Phase 1, 43 (marginal PS defeat)
    map: https://i.imgur.com/h1Gn8FM.png


    Nungwi, Mabwawa Coast, Loago
    5:00am, Holy Monday​

    He had underestimated the Burukovas. The cyclonic storms on Lake Rwenbezi came early, grounding helicopters and tossing a few of them into the lake. A multimillion-talent mistake. Some idiot lieutenant had used HallojMaps to calculate travel time through Azraq, leaving convoys of trucks stranded in the mud four hours from the rendezvous points. At one point it looked like thousands of Stanleans were going to be cut down in a military disaster that would go down in the history of Himyar.

    At least that hadn't happened. Colonel Marlow realized his plan, to coordinate a running attack southwards over the Azraqi border in conjunction with helicopters flying over the lake to strike from the south, was far too ambitious. He could not simply scale-up RLI counterinsurgency tactics. I should have massed the helicopters and the main force in Azraq. But the politics of everything was so uncertain, and the Fante regulars trusted the Azraqis even less than their white officers. Weak excuses. Now so many are dead. Several hundred.

    In an ideal world, the sheer size and force of the attack would have sent the Burukovas running from Filabusi and Hounde, and the RLI in control of the northwest Mabwawa Coast, the main force threatening Umtali with a secure perimeter guarding the roads down from the Alfajiri Mountains.

    In this clusterfuck of a world, the RLI had successfully secured only two border villages, Nungwi and Kendwa, neither of which had Burukova garrisons. We shot a few fucking border guards. Firefights were still raging in the uplands near Hounde. Stranded paratroopers, expecting backup from the main force that never came, had retreated from Filabusi. The ones that survived.

    In an ideal world Colonel Marlow would have had a base of operations, a place for helicopters to land, preliminary fortifications, all being built already while his fighters pushed the Burukovas over the Amanji River. Instead he was going to have to spend weeks clearing out this theater. And call in Fante tribal fighters. He grimaced. And more medics. Lots more medics. Instead of a forward base, the priority was a field hospital triage. If the Burukovas regrouped quickly, a day of heavy casualties would turn into a slaughter.

    He picked up the phone to tell Prime Minister Butler what kind of victory she could claim.
     
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  3. Natal

    Natal Well-Known Member

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    Phase 1, response

    Filabusi, Mabwawa Coast, Loago
    9:30 am, Holy Monday

    Lev Burukova, a short but very agitated middle aged man was fuming. Not only did the Natalians destroy his allies, the Rhinos, but now the generalised offensive towards the interior were pushing the communists to the west and now, just to make things more and more complicated, the Stanleyans decided to invade Loago. His faithful friend and the commander of the militia protecting the lands of the Syndicate, Zare Borisov has advised him to prepare for something. Far too much has Port Stanley stood silent and now they started a hostile rhetoric against what he called the legitimate government of Loago, the communist led Democratic Republic. He did follow the advice of Borisov and told Masimba to bring some of the equipment he had to the west as the rhetoric coming from Chidne was becoming more and more belicose.

    Now, he was walking through the main hospital in Filabusi, once a modern clinic of 350 beds, today a rundown hospital probably taking care of 900 or so people, receiving wounded both from the east and now from the north too. Besides him was Borisov.

    "It it important that we do not show ourselves as overly aggressive," Lev said. "Sir, I must insist. If we counterattack now, we could break the Stanleyans and show them that there is no chance in hell for them to set food in Loago..." argued Zare Borisov, but he was interrupted by a hand gesture of Lev and the arrival of Masimba, who saluted. "Any attack over the border would annoy the Azraqi who would probably then send a real army to fight us, not a token force to just support the Mai Mai. As of yet, the front is stable enough so that we don't need to start negotiations with Maseru. We can still overcome," Lev said. "Now, with an external enemy, we can really unite the Loagans under the red banner of the Democratic Republic of Loago and present the FTU and the NUG as foreign imposed puppets," he mumbled.

    Both Borisov and Masimba stood quiet as Lev was walking through the wounded at the hospital, shaking the hands of some of them, thanking others and expressing his condolences to others.

    "I want the RPGs and the Pelasgian SAMs to stay around the coast, should the Stanleyans attack again," said Lev as he returned to the two soldiers. "How many technicals do you still have?" he asked Masimba. "I think I could man up around 50 out of the original 100, or so, but I would be a bit for a stretch," the seasoned warrior said. "We still have some mortars around, they can be used. I want you, Masimba to let Comrade Punda lead a counter attack to retake the border villages of Nungwi and Kendwa. I don't want to see any Stanleyan setting foot on Loago itself. Send him with the technicals. Borisov will man a mortar bombardment as a welcoming gift for the invaders. I don't care if the villages disappear from the map, but the most important thing is to not cross the border into Azraq. Under no circumstance. Not even if Octavia Butler herself is wounded and limping she tries to cross the border... Once she crosses is is safe. I don't want to annoy the northerners, especially now. Tell Punda that after he takes them, he is to fortify the border to his best. Borisov, you will help with that. In the meantime, Masimba, I want you to go to the mountains to be sure that the front doesn't break there," said Lev as the other two soldiers saluted and left. He then sighed annoyed. His soldiers managed to keep of the Stanleyans, but it was very much a stalemate, he could see that as he was surrounded by wounded and dying men, and those were the ones that managed to get to Filabusi, God knows how many others died or are dying between the city and the border.
     
  4. Gunnland

    Gunnland FTR

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    Our Lady of the Lake Abbey School
    Near Kendwa, Loago
    Sergeant Amadu Kasawura always teased Lieutenant Michael Cameron Ogilvie, the young square-jawed Gunnish officer straight out of officer candidate school who thought some action in Himyar would help his career back home. Kasawura was a veteran of the endless bush wars in the north, decorated with more than scars. War had made him rich. But Fante never rose into the officer ranks; that was for white boys wet behind the ears unaccustomed to the smell of war. It was Kasawura's job to babysit Ogilvie. The platoon knelt on both sides of the the roadside, and looked up at the low Fergusine abbey school on the hill with its arcades and squat brick tower. Kasawura's breath smelled like Leopard beer. He could not exactly refuse the assignment Colonel Marlow had skipped the chain of command to give him. Lieutenant Ogilvie put down his binoculars. He was pale.

    "It's a girl's school."
    "Unfortunately on a strategic location, sir."​
    "They're just children."
    "They're just Nethians."​
    "This is beneath a soldier."
    "In the global war against communism?"​
    "I cannot do this."
    "Did you see the skirts they wear?"
    Raising the binoculars, Ogilvie saw the Loagan girls' skinny black legs sticking out from the blue and green tartan of the Campbell Gunns. He fell silent. Every Gunnishman and especially every Cameron knew the story of how the Campbells had raised their great black dogs, coin dubh, up from puppies on the milk of MacGregor Cameron women, the better to track and hunt and kill every last living MacGregor. Which they did. Kasawura had been teasing, but saw that he had awakened something bitter in the young white man. It has always been this way, everywhere. Since Mycallesus and even long before Mycallesus. Ogilvie nodded and Kasawura gave the move out sign.

    Not long afterwards, the two men were pressed together behind a van, amid staccato gunfire, women and girls screaming, and the smell of burning hair. Ogilvie was crying. He doesn't even know to save his tears for the girls who survive, Kasawura thought wryly. The lieutenant was shouting, pointing to a group of teaching sisters in white habits emerging from the door, behind the mother superior with a white flag. They looked so clean amidst the whole mess.

    "I can't shoot a sister!"
    "Even if it would be a mercy?"​

    Kasawura's eyes bulged comically and his laugh bared his big pink tongue. He lobbed a few white phosphorous grenade over the van, and the nuns' surrender party became a firestorm.

    An hour later Kasawura found Ogilvie kneeling in shock before the blaze of the chapel. He could see the path of tears through the soot on the young man's face. Probably worst of all to him, the blessed sacrament was singed. But for once Kasawura decided not to revel in this anguish. Instead he handed Ogilvie an Eiffellandian-made Seiff camera.

    "Why would we...?"
    "Colonel Marlow's orders, sir."​
    "He wants evidence of this?"
    "Yes sir. Of what the communists did."​
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2019 at 3:18 AM
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  5. Gunnland

    Gunnland FTR

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    Phase 2, 87 (decisive PS victory)
    map: https://i.imgur.com/h1Gn8FM.png


    Nungwi, Loago
    Holy Thursday
    As soon as Colonel Marlow fully realized how overcomplicated and overambitious his plan of attack was, his fortune changed, and it was Lev Burukova's turn to be overambitious, throwing scores of gunwagons against little Nungwi and Kendwa, and firing hundreds of mortar shells at the villages that were mostly already destroyed. If the RLI was prepared for anything, it was guerillas in pickup trucks. The RANU would never risk an open confrontation like this against the RLI with "technicals," and only used them for hit-and-run operations. Maybe the Burukovas aren't working as closely with the Uprising as the communists are, Marlow wondered. Remembering their training, disciplined RLI units dug in and hit the technicals with their old Burgundian-made Carl Gustaf recoilless rifles. Most of the Burukova mortar shells sailed harmlessly overhead. RLI soldiers began moving slowly among the scores of smoldering Burukova technicals, cutting down the gunwagons' crews.

    The Battle of Nungwi would long be remembered, happily or unhappily, as the engagement that guaranteed Port Stanley would be engaged in a long war in Loago. The Burukova attempt to deliver a quick death blow to the disorganized RLI backfired spectacularly. Colonel Marlow smiled as he scanned the plains to the south with his binoculars.

    As the Schwarzhabicht helicopters thwack-thwack-thwacked overhead, laden with air-to-ground missiles to pursue the routed technicals and machine guns to cut down the mortars, Colonel Marlow faced a decision. He knew Prime Minister Butler and the government in Chinde was alarmed by the botched initial phase of the invasion, worried the Burukovas would resist fiercely, and concerned it was only a matter of time before the Loagan national unity government in Maseru declared war and made things even worse. We can say we smashed them and taught them a lesson. If we leave now, this will look like a brilliant strike on the Burukovas. The world will never know the weaknesses they exposed in our plan. Besides, the men may be too exhausted to regroup and press forward to Hounde and Filabusi...

    "MacGregor! MacGregor!" Marlow looked to see a young Gunnish lieutenant, screaming like a madman, leading Fante troops to right the unburnt technicals and drive them in pursuit of the Burukovas. He spotted Amadu Kasawura pulling a dead fighter out of the cab of one of the gunwagons; he could see the black teeth of the sasabonsam from a hundred yards. The colonel remembered what the sergeant had said about Lieutenant Ogilvie, when the old profiteer radioed Marlow to complain he couldn't capture and sell the schoolgirls ("There are still Azraqis who pay, and the border is just there.") before razing the school. Sergeant Kasawura said that Lieutenant Ogilvie had spent the entire day after the massacre curled in a fetal position after an admittedly unpleasant assignment clearing away an abbey school near the neighboring vision. "He's gone mad. Shellshock? Beserk? War will tell." So it did.

    This was how the counter-attack down the road to Filabusi began, without the colonel giving any orders, with stark-mad Ogilvie. The soldiers were tired but hungrier to taste a real victory. Marlow had the presence of mind to order his rearguard regiment to turn move east, into the uplands, to carry out an assault on Hounde. With any luck the RLI could pacify both cities by Holy Saturday, secure a commanding position on the north Mabwawa coast, and regroup for an assault on its main city, Umtali.
     
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  6. Natal

    Natal Well-Known Member

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    Phase 2, response
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    Filabusi - Umtali Road

    Holy Friday, 0130 am

    The SUV was driving as fast as possible on the dirt road connecting Filabusi to Umtali. The counter-attack was a complete disaster. Borisov ordered nearly all of the technicals and depleted nearly all of the mortar shells in a complete catastrophe. Nearly all his counter-attack force was wiped out and the Stanleyans moved on, pursuing the routing militiamen have literally captured Filabusi and Hounde with the local showing only a symbolic resistance. It is a disaster, though Lev, but he then turned to Borisov who was in the back of the car. "We need to protect Umtali... The whole opium production is there... if we manage to fend off the Stanleyans now, it will buy us time to negotiate with Maseru," he said. "The Wala cunt left us..." Borisov mumbled, "Masimba..." he further explained as Lev Burukova made a grimace. "He said he will lead the defence of Hounde..." said Burukova as he sighed. "And yet he left the city with no defence, taking his fighters in the mountains. While it might be possible for him to still be with us, I highly doubt it..." growled Zare Borisov.

    "Once we reach the city, I want the whole northern approach mined as fast as possible. I want us to be ready to defend it with everything we have. The Pelasgians have us some Anti-Air weapons that we haven't used. I want you to be ready to shoot down any helicopter approaches, but if you see armoured cars coming to the city, don't be afraid to use them. Evacuate all our guys, I want them in Umtali, " yelled Lev to cover the noise of the engine roaring at maximum as the car was driving towards the regional capital. I need to win more time... a week would be best, he thought.

    10 km east of Hounde, Alfajiri Mountains


    Masimba grunted as the corpsman looked at his wound. "You are very lucky, commander. Its just a fleshwound," the medic said. "Yet it hurts like hell," he growled. It's impossible for this to be the way the Democratic Republic to die... to see the 60 year long dream of the LLC, set up by the first Masimba... So close to victory and now, back to square one, he thought. He decided to be more intelligent than Lev Burukova. After seeing the RLI fight for Nungwi, it was clear to him that any sort of regular army tactics will be disastrous. No, he needed to return to what he knew best, become a guerrilla.

    As the Burukova counter-offensive was taking place and the militiamen were massacred, Masimba ordered his men to not join in, but rather booby trap everything they could in Hounde, and then randomly leaving some mines in the forests going into the mountains. Of course, there were only a few, less than 30 actually and they were sloppily positioned, some not even covered by dirt to hide them. There put there as a psychological deterrent to make the Stanleyans believe that the slopes are mined so they won't follow him. Now, his plan was to meet up with the RANU and wait for the Stanleyans to make their next move and attack Umtali. As long as they would start elongating their supply lines inside Loago, that is when he wanted to start harassing them. In the meantime, he needed to lick his wounds and reorganise.
     
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  7. Gunnland

    Gunnland FTR

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    Solenzo, Loago
    There was a makeshift couch, a tigerskin draped over sandbags. On it sprawled a woman in a pornographer's idea of a guerilla uniform, tied in front to reveal her midriff and push up her breasts, with a guenon in a gold collar on her shoulders. She was lithe and dark, like a lazy panther. She nuzzled the taxidermy tiger's mouth, fangs out in a frozen roar, against her bald head. Occasionally she would open her own mouth like this, and a woman would hand-feed igbin (a morsel of giant land snail) between her pink gums and white teeth. Even more denuded than her mistress, the serving-woman wore strips of white cloth that accented her tan, though she was clearly a white woman. When not feeding igbin, she would gently fan the couch with a palm frond. From time to time the guenon with the gold collar would jump down from the couch to shit in a pot in the hands of a black man who sat cross-legged in front of his mistress, his forehead touching the floor. Both of these silent half-naked attendants, the white palm-frond woman and the Damawali monkey-chamberpot man, were cabinet ministers in the Butler government of the Commonwealth of Port Stanley. Salammbô desired to feel every last drop of her power.

    Across the room was a half-caste man in fatigues, eating a bowl of human flesh. Not so bad if you knew how to prepare it, with plenty of spices to mask the smell. If you grew up where warthog rectum (traditionally prepared with an eyeball stuck in it) is a great delicacy, perhaps you too would eat your fellow man from time to time. George had just told his luxuriating lover that he and his 500 RANU fighters, the northern speartip of what was left of the communist insurgency, expected an attack from the Stanleans in Hounde. He smiled when he said this, but his regal partner was distressed.

    "Disappear into the forests, Georges, like Masimba did. Let the white germs hunt our ghosts."

    He rose and looked out the window, which afforded a view of the River Amani flowing in the valley below. Part of him wanted to take her on the couch, to feel her discover the power within him, which she so loved. Salammbô reminded him of Anwanyu when she was young. But he resisted.

    "We didn't lose a hundred fighters in Mashrabiya at his alcázar..." He meant the prostrate Al-Khazari. "...and march into these mountains not to fight. And we didn't take her..." Salammbô laughed and leaned back openmouthed for another igbin from Adelaide. "...to be your pet germ. They must come here to fight us, where we want them."

    George Battle had spent decades hoodwinking witch-men and training politicians, nursing the resentment of young men and stoking the anger of , shooting down RLI helicopters and butterflying Fante rivals with his machete. It would all come down to tomorrow, he expected. He wondered how Callum Marlow would taste.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2019 at 9:15 PM
  8. Gunnland

    Gunnland FTR

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    Phase 2, 92 (decisive PS victory)
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    Umtali, Loago
    Holy Saturday
    Umtali was won at the Battle of Nungwi, the rout turning into a running battle where everything seemed to go right for the Stanleans. By the morning of Holy Saturday, the majority of the technicals "retreating" into the city were gunwagonscaptured by zealous RLI platoons. As Sergeant Kasawura sped through the city streets, the Lieutenant Ogilvie hunched down and pointed the truckbed-mounted 12.7x108mm CONARM machine gun up towards the rooftops. It went, "fftht-fftht-fftht-fftht-fftht. Fftht-fftht-fftht-fftht-fftht," sawing down surprised Burukova fighters. In this way there were hardly any SAMs left by the time the helicopter assault began.

    ***

    Hounde, Loago
    Easter Sunday
    The several dozen surviving RANU fighters walked single-file up into the Alfajiri Mountains, towards Safiri. Many, maybe most of them, carried poles on their shoulders, suspending hammocks full of wounded comrades. Cruelly, many of them had been injured in the booby traps of their erstwhile ally Masimba. Their leader, George Battle, barely clung to life in his.

    At the head of the line, Salammbô lounged in her own hammock litter, hers a purpose-built tipoye. Not because she was injured; because it improved the morale of the Fante soldiers to see a white woman and a Damawali man treated like slaves, instead of vice-versa. She played absentmindedly with her monkey and occasionally gave Adelaide a slap of encouragement with her kiboko, a coachwhip made from hippopotamus hide. Not as strong as Marta was, but more docile, the chieftess thought. But mostly she thought about whether to continue into the Fante lands where the RANU fighters could disperse and go into hiding, or order the men to turn south to combine with the National Unity Government forces. She did not know whether the Loagans and Natalians would welcome her help, or use her and George as bargaining chips.

    She had grown accustomed to blood and death, to men groaning and gasping for air. And once he was injured, George Battle no longer interested her very much, she realized. The real shame, Salammbô thought, was losing her tigerskin and stock of igbin.

    ***

    Umtali, Loago
    Easter Sunday
    The red-yellow-green horizontal stripes of the Stanlean tricolor could be seen everywhere in Umtali. Callum Marlow knelt down in the front pew of thechurch, thanking Allah for victory. Why did he pray secretly to the God-Who-Is-One-and-Not-Three in a Catholic church? Suffice it to say that he thought this was the secret teaching of Christianity, and that Hajaris have had a weird influence on religious beliefs in eastern Himyar.

    He also prayed for forgiveness. If he had not planned such a complicated initial assault, many men would not have died. A simple attack over the Azraqi border would have sufficed to destroy the stupid and poorly-equipped Burukovas. Had Marlow simplified his assault, he thought, the red, yellow, and green would be flying all the way down the Mabwawa coast by now.
     
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