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Old 03-07-2015, 07:37 PM
Matt Wiser Matt Wiser is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Auberry, CA
Posts: 860

Thanks for the feedback, gents. As for the ALA, every collaborationist government needs its own army, and the PSD? Someone has to watch the army as well as the rest of the government. The PSD spent most of its time purging the Hall government, and managed to incite more guerrilla activity than it managed to quell. The PSD was heavily influenced by the KGB, Cuban DGI, and the Stasi. The Soviet military and the GRU were opposed to the creation of the ALA and PSD, but were overruled.

And so...

1415 Hours: Brownsville/South Padre Island International Airport:

General Petrov was actually pleased with how things had been going so far, up to a point. The airdrops had acutally made it in, and though the amount of supplies they delivered was but a drop in the bucket, compared to what the Soviet forces needed, at least it was something. And the general saw that the morale of his men, along with the wounded, had actually improved, seeing those supply parachutes open. And several of the big An-12s and Il-76s had made it in from Cuba, and not only had they unloaded their supplies, but wounded and others with priority had been flown out. Though one sight had been sad to see: one of the An-12s, fully loaded, could be seen as it climbed out. Then an American fighter, what kind he couldn't tell, got in and fired a missile at the transport. The big An-12 took the missile near the tail, and after the explosion, the whole tail unit fell off, and the plane spiraled in, exploding in a fireball. And Petrov knew such sights were going to be more common in the hours and days ahead.

Then a commotion near the ramp got very loud. He got up from his desk and went to see what was going on. Several Air Force guards had a Ural 375 truck surrounded. “What the hell's going on here?” Petrov demanded.

“Comrade General, this KGB officer had a pass, and then he tried to get his truck over to the loading area. He says he has 'important materials' that need to be evacuated.” one Sergeant said.

Petrov went to the driver's side. A KGB Colonel, and another Chekist, were in the cab. “Let's see your priority, Colonel.”

“General, I have a priority pass to load this material on the next available transport,” the KGB Colonel replied.

“What material? We don't have room for files or anything looted, if that's what you mean,” Petrov said.

While the KGB Colonel was arguing with General Petrov, one of the Air Force guards went around the side of the truck. He stopped for a minute. Those couldn't be. He thought he'd heard muffled voices coming from the back of the truck. He went to the rear gate and opened the flap. “Comrade General! I think you should see this!”

Petrov went to the Sergeant and looked inside the truck. There, hands bound in front of them, were twenty or so young girls. Teenagers, mostly, but some were older. All showed signs of abuse, and were clearly frightened. “Sergeant, get those women off this truck. NOW!”

Petrov went over to the KGB Colonel, who was now clearly agitated. “So, my Chekist friend, that's the 'important material' you were trying to evacuate?”

The KGB man started blabbing. None of it made any sense to the General. He called an officer of the Commandant's Service (Soviet Military Police) over. “Major! Take both of these two and give them to a penal battalion. Normally, I'd have them shot, but since we're tight on ammunition, it'd be a waste.”

“Yes, Comrade General!” the officer replied.

Petrov leered at the KGB Colonel, who was being disarmed. “Now, how does it feel to be headed to a penal unit, when you've likely sent people there yourself?” He turned to another officer. “Get those women out of here. There's a POW compound nearby. Take them there.”

“Yes, Comrade General.”

1430 Hours: Headquarters, 4th Guards Tank Army.

General Suraykin entered his HQ area. He'd been out and about, visiting his troops, and talking with the officers. He was a popular general with his men, and he'd taken care of them as best he could. Now, with their final battle approaching, it was almost time. An American phrase he'd heard often now came back to him. “Game Day” was approaching, and he knew it. His Chief of Staff was waiting. “Good afternoon, Comrade General.”

“Thank you, Golvoko,” Suraykin said. “Anything from either General Malinsky or General Alekseyev?”

“Nothing from General Alekseyev, Comrade General, though we have heard from General Malinsky.”

“And?” Suraykin asked.

“Just that Front Headquarters is moving to a new location. The Americans are closing in north of Harlingen, and General Malinsky decided to relocate his headquarters,” Golvoko responded.

“Hmm. An intelligence update?” asked Suraykin.

His intelligence officer came over. “Not much, Comrade General, since this morning.”

“What is new?”

“The East Germans have fallen back, and so has both Eighth Guards and 28th Armies. They're under heavy pressure,” the intelligence man said.

“When do you expect the Americans to get close to us?” Suraykin asked, gesturing to the situation map.

“Sometime tonight, Comrade General, or early next morning.” Golvoko said. “They're moving faster than we thought.”

General Suraykin looked at the map. “That's the price we've paid for underestimating Powell, it seems.”

“Evidently so, Comrade General,” Golvoko said. “He's moving much faster than we thought. Either he smells victory, or...”

“Or he's under political pressure from Philadelphia to finish us off,” the intelligence officer said.

“Either way, Comrades, Powell's coming for us.” Suraykin said. He turned to his Chief of Staff. “Contact all units. Order them to stand to.”

1510 Hours: Soviet Headquarters, Brownsville

General Alekseyev was focused on his operations map again. This time, he was looking at the remaining bridges across the Rio Grande. With the bridge at Hidalgo blown, there were only two bridges left over the river. With air evacuation becoming problematic with each passing hour, he knew that some of those he needed to get out would have to do so by road into Mexico. The bridge at Progresso Lakes, and the Gateway International Bridge here in Brownsville were the only two left. But, he realized, ribbon bridges could still be built. And there were still engineers available. Some had already displaced to Mexico, but others were still in the pocket. “General Chibisov!”

“Yes, Comrade General?”

“Get the chief of engineers going. He's to find suitable sites for constructing ribbon bridges over the Rio Grande. He doesn't need to clear them with me, let him pick crossing sites on his authority,” Alekseyev said.

“Comrade General, may I ask why?” Chibisov said.

“We're not likely to evacuate everyone who can get out by air. Even getting some to Mexico beats the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico, Pavel Pavlovitch.”

Chibisov nodded. “I'll speak to General Blagin right away, Comrade General,”

“Excellent,” Alekseyev said. He changed the subject. “How soon until Malinsky's new headquarters becomes ready?”

“A few hours, Comrade General. Though his advance party has reached the new location, they're not quite ready. Malinsky should be en route, though.” Chibisov reported.

Alekseyev nodded. Then the phone rang. Colonel Sergetov answered. “Comrade General, it's General Petrov.”

Alekseyev took the phone. He listened to Petrov for a few minutes, and a scowl came over his face as he did so. “Very well, Petrov. The course you suggest is appropriate. We don't have the time, nor the ammunition to spare, for further cases.” Then the General hung up. “That was General Petrov. Some KGB Colonel was trying to load his private harem aboard one of the evacuation aircraft.”

Chibisov's and Sergetov's jaws dropped. “Mother of....After all that we've done here, the KGB still behaves like animals,” Chibisov said.

“Yes. Issue this order, Pavel Pavlovitch,” Alekseyev said.

“Comrade General?”

“Anyone trying to smuggle anything, whether looted goods, or one's mistress-willing or otherwise-onto the evacuation aircraft is to be stripped of his rank, and placed in a penal battalion. Those who try to persist in such conduct will be executed by hanging.” Alekseyev said.

“This applies to all in the perimeter, Comrade General?” Chibisov asked.

“Everyone, General. Issue the order immediately.”

Chibisov nodded. “Comrade General.” And he left to issue the orders, while Colonel Sergetov came over to the General.

“Comrade General, nothing surprises me about what the Chekists have gotten away with-or tried to-since we've been here.” Sergetov said.

“Quite so, Ivan Mikhailovich. Quite so. Now, in some way, perhaps we can atone for that. One thing more: inform General Chibisov,” Alekseyev said.

“Yes, Comrade General?”

“Send the violators to that penal unit sitting on the beach at the end of Highway 4. The Americans are likely to land at that beach. Those involved in such misbehavior can atone for their crimes by facing the U.S. Marines in battle when they do land.”

1550 Hours: Elsa, Texas.

Lieutenant Colonel Gerhard Fiebig surveyed the small city. He shook his head: he'd need a division to defend the city properly, and all he had were two weak battalions from his 40th Air Assault Regiment, plus an antitank battalion and an weak tank battalion-from what had been an independent tank regiment mauled further north. General Metzler had given him the mission: hold the Americans off as long as possible, and as he saw the battered 9th Panzer and 11th Motor-Rifle Divisions pulling back, he knew it was time. He gathered his commanders in the city hall, and addressed them. “Comrades, this is it. Our time has come, and the Americans will be here soon.”

Major Franz Schenkel, who commanded the 1st Battalion, asked, “Is this a delaying action, or do we stand and fight, Comrade Colonel?”

“We make our stand here,” Fiebig said. “Orders from General Metzler.”

Captain Nicolaus Buehler, who was now in command of the tank battalion, asked, “For how long?”

“Until the last round, Comrades.”

Murmurs filled the room. They knew that the Americans had mauled the 9th Panzer Division, and the 11th Motor-Rifle Division hadn't been better off. Their own regiment had been shot up at San Antonio the year before, and at Alice in May. There hadn't been any replacements from home, and the word going around was that the West Germans had thrown off their neutrality stance, and were threatening to invade-in coordination with the British and Dutch. So they'd have to fight with what they had.

Fiebig went on, “We're prepared as best we can. Now, soon, it'll be up to our soldiers. Buehler, you're our counterattack force. How many tanks do you have?”

“Twenty-six, Comrade Colonel,” was the response.

“Very well,” Fiebig said. “One other thing. I know we're hated by the civilian population: obviously, their political development didn't entail their supporting socialism here. But I am a soldier first, and will not disgrace the uniform by massacre.”

“Comrade Colonel?” the Political Officer asked.

“In several instances, there's been massacres of civilians by Soviets or Cubans. I'm not going to stoop to that level. Tell the civilians to take shelter,” Fiebig said.

“Comrade Colonel, there's some who are best described as counterrevolutionaries. They should be disposed of,” the Political Officer replied.

“The whole town fits that category,” Buehler said. “And we can't spare the ammunition, even if we were so inclined.”

“Correct, Comrade Captain. And I'm no KGB or ALA barbarian. Let the ones in the jail go, and tell the civilians to take shelter,” Fiebig decided.

1615 Hours: Gulf Front Headquarters, San Benito Community College

General Malinsky was settling into this, his new headquarters. He knew that he'd likely displace one more time before the end, but this suited him just fine. Several large classrooms served as staff space, while another was perfect for the Operations Room. And General Isakov was on his way from the old headquarters, at what had been a military school prewar. He turned to the map. The Cuban 2nd Army was starting to come unglued: though three of its divisions had fallen back, the 27th Motor-Rifle Division had apparently not gotten the word, and it was in the process of being encircled. What was that old German saying? Kesselschlacht, or “Cauldron Battle,” he remembered. Well, that was becoming such a battle, as the American VIII Corps was in the process of enveloping and destroying the Cuban division.

He glanced at where Third Shock Army was located: They were just north of Weslasco, and had reported their last helicopters had been destroyed at the Mid-Valley Airport. Even without that thug Starukhin in command, Third Shock was hanging in there. A pity the East Germans were not so fortunate: their units were in such bad shape that General Metzler had decided to sacrifice his 40th Air Assault Regiment. But the Cuban 1st, and his own 8th Guards and 28th Armies, were still fighting, and fighting hard. And soon, before the evening was out, he'd have 4th Guards Tank under his command. Then Lieutenant General Valery Kisaylov came to him: he was his Operations Officer. “Comrade General,”

“Yes, Kisaylov?” Malinsky said.

“General Suraykin reports he's fully prepared, Comrade General. And the Air Force has some aircraft and fuel, to give him some support.”

“Good, Kisaylov. Very good indeed.” Malinsky said. “We'll soon be anchored on that line. And 4th Guards Tank will be the center.”

“Yes, Comrade General. A pity our only reserve is the 105th Guards Airborne, though. I've asked for the 76th Guards, along with 47th Tank Brigade, but those units were refused,” Kisaylov reported.

“I know. Isakov made the same request. But General Alekseyev himself denied the request. They're all we've got left,” Malinsky reminded his Operations Chief.

Chastened, Kisaylov replied, “I understand, Comrade General, but we may need them at some point.”

“True. But for the time being, they're under General Alekseyev's personal command.”

“Comrade General,” Kisaylov said, “I...” An aide passed him a message form. “Comrade General, the Cuban 24th Motor-Rifle Division has tried to relieve the 27th. They were mauled, and are falling back,”

“Let me guess: they tried that on orders from above. And I'm not referring to General Alekseyev,” Malinsky said.

“Apparently so. Our liaison officers report the Cubans do have communications with Havana.”

1645 Hours: Brownsville/South Padre Island International Airport

General Petrov now had a serious headache. Just as it seemed the airlift might be working, four F-111s came in suddenly, at treetop level, and scattered cluster munitions all over the ramp area and one of the runways. Two Il-76s were caught in the rain of submunitions and exploded, while an An-12 had part of a wing blown off. To make matters worse, a few minutes after the F-111s left, four A-6s came in on their own strike. Each Intruder dumped sixteen 500-pound bombs onto the runways and taxiways, and not only holed the runways, but blew up a large An-22 transport that had just arrived. And now, what had been a promising day now turned into a very bad one. His engineer chief came up to him. “Comrade General, I've got my crews out, we'll have this runway working again by morning.”

“Good, Boris Petrovich, Good. Put every man you can onto the job,” Petrov said.

“Of course, Comrade General. I've had my men check the fields to the east. There's no cluster bomblets there, and that can serve as a dropping zone for supplies,” the engineering officer said.

Petrov looked at him. “Very good, Colonel. Any other locales you can find for supply drops, let me know at once.”

“Comrade General. If you'll excuse me....”

Petrov waved him off. He had to let General Alekseyev know the bad news. The evacuation was off until morning. He went into his office, picked up the phone, and gave Alekseyev the bad news.
Treat everyone you meet with kindness and respect, but always have a plan to kill them.

Old USMC Adage
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