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Old 12-20-2021, 06:54 PM
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Raellus Raellus is offline
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Default Death of a [USMC] Division [in Sweden]: a 4e Resource

The following draft was inspired by the classic v1 Death of a Division Adventure Handout that accompanied the starter set's Escape from Kalisz scenario. It's based on the T2K4 Handout Sweden and follows the rough timeline and unit locations given there and in the 4e Referee's Manual as closely as possible.

Constructive feedback is requested. Once I've read and processed any feedback offered, and made the necessary adjustments, I will upload a final draft in Word doc and PDF format. Hopefully, this little project can be of some used to Refs interested in trying out Sweden as a campaign setting.

I hope you enjoy.

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Twilight: 2000 4e
Adventure Handout: Escape from Örebro
Death of a [USMC] Division

Task Force Viking, consisting of the United States 2nd Marine Division and Swedish 9. Stridsgruppen, jumped off on its raid on April 9th from Lidköping, in a drive on Örebro. The ultimate goal of Operation Reset, known only to those select few in the divisional staff, was no less than the liberation of Soviet-occupied Stockholm. From LD Follow Me, the first leg of the drive, along Axis Edge, would follow the right bank of Lake Vänern, conveniently shielding the division’s left flank. 9. Stridsgruppen, consisting of the Älsborg Infantry Brigade (Mechanized), Skaraborg Armored Brigade, and the Life Regiment Hussars, would follow a roughly parallel course, along the left bank of Lake Vättern, screening 2nd MarDiv’s right flank during the advance towards Örebro.

Early on the 9th, contact was made with partisans of the 2nd Circuit (formerly an infantry company of the Home Guard) in Götene, and they reported the road ahead clear. Guides were provided and by evening of the first day, advanced elements of 2nd MarDiv had reached Mariestad, with follow-up forces closing up behind.

April 10th: 2nd MarDiv moved out east on the E20 highway towards Hova, which the division’s recon battalion (2nd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion) had scouted the previous day. The division closed up on Hova by the evening of the 12th and advanced elements continued east on E20 to occupy the strategic road junction of Laxa. At the same time, 9. Stridsgruppen advanced along Route 49 towards Askersund, a strategic crossroads at the northern tip of Lake Vättern.

April 11th: 2nd MarDiv paused for maintenance and fuel distillation while its recon battalion scouted the way ahead. 2nd LAR reported a strong blocking position south of the lakeside town of Örebro. Interrogation of prisoners revealed the town’s garrison to be a forward-deployed battalion of 76th Guards VDV Division, supported by local communist militia. 2 MarDiv’s commander ordered its 6th Marine Regiment to deploy against the enemy blocking position, fixing it in position while the 2nd Assault Amphibious Battalion, using its swim-capable AAV-7s, outflanked Örebro’s southern defenses by crossing the lake east of the town.

In the meantime, 8th Marine Regiment was directed to advance several miles east, down Highway 52, to protect 2nd MarDiv’s right flank from Soviet 125th Tank Battalion, known to be cantoned in the Katrineholm area.
2nd AAB’s outflanking maneuver took the enemy garrison in Örebro completely by surprise; threatened with encirclement, the Soviet paratroopers began withdrawing from the town.

April 12th: With the relatively bloodless capture of Örebro, PL Second was reached in only three days, two days behind schedule, but at minimal cost to TF Viking. With the full support of his staff, the Task Force commander decided to continue the operation. TF Viking’s next objective was the town of Elskituna, approximately 50 road miles to the east, along Axis Corner. 6th and 8th Marine regiments would act as division reserve while a spearhead built around 2nd Marine Regiment would advance to OBJ DOG (Södertale). At that point, 6th and 8th Marine Regiments would take the lead in the final advance on Stockholm.

April 13th: The next morning, while 6th Marine Regiment consolidated the division base camp area at Örebro, 2nd Marine Regiment (reinforced by 2nd AAB), led by 2nd LAR with the M-1 Abrams of 2nd Tank Battalion rolling slack, pushed east along the E18/E20 towards Elskituna. The Swedish Skaraborg Armored Brigade followed a roughly parallel course along the Gamla Örebrovägen (Old Örebro Road), about 2 miles south of E18.
At this point, the operation quickly began to fall apart…

As the LAV-25s of 2nd LAR rolled to within sight of the Svartan River, Soviet troops blew the E20 bridge, stalling 2nd Marine Regiment’s drive short of Arboga. The American column paused while the 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion was brought forward from Örebro.

Almost as soon as the American advance came to a halt, the Skaraborg Armored Brigade was hit by a strong force of Soviet paratroopers laying in wait in the thick forest bordering the Gamla Örebrovägen southwest of Elskituna. The Soviet paratroopers allowed forward scouts to pass before ambushing the trailing Swedish Strv 121 tanks with a barrage of ATGM and RPG fire, inflicting heavy losses and stopping the Swedish advance cold. With Soviet paratroopers swarming the road behind his burning armored column, the Swedish brigade commander desperately radioed 2nd Marine Regiment for immediate assistance.

While 2-10 Artillery set up its guns to fire in support of the counterattack, 2nd Marines debouched and plunged into the forest separating the two allied columns to rescue the beleaguered Skaraborg Armored Brigade. Attacked by Marines from behind, the Soviet troops in the woods north of the Gamla Örebrovägen withdrew, relieving pressure on what remained of Skaraborg Armored Brigade.

As TF Viking’s spearhead entered close combat with elements of 76th Guards VDV Division in the woods southwest of Arboga, forward outposts of 1-8 Marines, dug in just east of Odensbacken, reported Soviet armor approaching Örebro from the east, along National Road 52; a fire mission delivered by the 155mm guns of 5-10 Artillery temporarily halted the Soviet advance, and the Soviet tanks and IFVs were observed pulling back to regroup.

Shortly thereafter, forward observers perched atop the man-made height of Kvarntorp Pile (a large industrial ash mound just outside the town of Kumla) spotted a second, even longer Soviet column advancing up National Road 51 from the south; 2-8 Marines was hastily shifted south to block this Soviet force, later identified as the Soviet 1st Guards Motor Rifle Division.

Later that afternoon, the Älsborg Infantry Brigade, still holding Askersund, reported yet another force of Soviet tanks and infantry fighting vehicles approaching, in strength, from the south, on Highway 50 (this turned out to be the Soviet 131st Pechenga Motor Rifle Division).

By nightfall on the 13th, it was apparent that there had either been a major intelligence failure, or the Soviets had been tipped off in advance to TF Viking’s intentions.

April 14th: The next morning, the news pouring into 2nd MarDiv HQ went from bad to worse. Älsborg Infantry Brigade in Askersund reported being under heavy attack from the Soviet 131st Pechenga Motor Rifle Division, 30 miles south of 2nd MarDiv HQ at Örebro.

At dawn, preceded by a brief but heavy artillery bombardment, Soviet tanks and IFVs of 125th Tank Battalion smashed through the 1-8 Marines occupying blocking positions around Odensbacken and continued west towards Örebro. 3-8 Marines was rushed east to close the gap. A concurrent attack up National Road 51 by Soviet 1st Guards Motor Rifle Division threatened to break through 2-8 Marines, and enter the division rear from the south. Only the timely arrival of reinforcements from 3-6 Marines halted the latter Soviet attack.

Shortly after noon, forward outposts of 1-6 Marines, then holding positions northeast of Örebro, reported Soviet light tanks and BTRs heading towards the town. Two hours later, supported by heavy mortar and AFV fire, BTRs and dismounted infantry began to push 1-6 Marines back towards the town. 2-6 Marines were shifted north and ordered to prepare to counterattack to relieve 1-6. 2nd MarDiv’s reserve was now fully committed to the fighting.
Threatened with being cut off from the rest of 2nd MarDiv east of Örebro, TF Viking’s spearhead was ordered by Divisional HQ to pull back to the town. Soviet paratroopers harassed the withdrawing columns until they exited the woods and reached open ground.

During the course of the day, 10th Marine Artillery Regiment’s guns exhausted their supply of 155mm shells providing defensive fires to the division’s hard pressed Marine infantry regiments. Fuel supplies for all of TF Viking’s vehicles were running dangerously low.

April 15th: By morning, using prisoner interrogations and signals intercepts, 2nd MarDiv G2 had determined that TF Viking was under attack by no less than six separate Soviet field formations of battalion or greater strength. The enemy force northeast of Örebro was identified as Soviet 336th Guards Naval Infantry Brigade; the armored force attacking from the east was pegged as the 125th Tank Battalion; attacking on a south to north axis, both 1st Guards Motor Rifle and Soviet 131st Pechenga Motor Rifle Divisions. A meeting of the divisional staff concluded that Operation Reset had failed and that TF Viking’s very existence was now at stake. It was decided that the only viable course of action remaining to the joint task force was to make a concerted attempt to consolidate and break out into open country to the west of Örebro.

Soon after the order was issued, and supplies of fuel, food, and ammunition were being redistributed, the Soviets renewed their attacks on multiple axes. 6th and 8th Marine Regiments were hit just as they began pulling out of their defensive positions south and east of Örebro, turning what was planned as an orderly retreat into a route. 2nd Regiment and several attached combat and support units held on as long as they could northeast of Örebro, but with Soviet tanks and mechanized infantry pouring into the town behind them, 2-2 Marines broke and scattered.

April 16th: 2nd Marine Regimental HQ, separated from most of its constituent units and under relentless pressure from elements of Soviet 1st Guards Motor Rifles, began conducting a fighting withdrawal to Mariestad.

April 17th: Chaotic fighting raged throughout the day. By evening, the exhausted remnants of TF Viking were scattered hither and thither over dozens of square miles of Swedish countryside. Communications between units was sporadic, at best. At that point, 2nd MarDiv HQ had been off the air for two days. At last report, the remains of 6th and 8th Marine Regiments, and what was left of Skaraborg Armored Brigade, were being chased towards Karlstad by Soviet 131st Pechenga Motor Rifle Division.

2nd Armored Battalion, unsure of its location and running dangerously low on fuel, reported being in heavy contact with Soviet 316th Naval Infantry Battalion. 2nd Marine Regimental HQ was forced out of Mariestad by 131st MRD and barely escaped to Töreboda. I

As Soviet tanks overran 2nd MarDiv HQ, its commanding officer, Major General Stan Berriman, broadcast a final message in the clear to all TF Viking units, “Good luck. You’re on your own.”

-

A big thanks to Vader on the Free League T2k forum for sharing his expertise on Swedish geography and military stuff.

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Author of Twilight 2000 adventure module, Rook's Gambit, and the campaign sourcebooks, Korean Peninsula, and Tara Romaneasca (Romania), available-

https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...--Rooks-Gambit
https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...ula-Sourcebook
https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...nia-Sourcebook

Last edited by Raellus; 12-21-2021 at 08:36 PM.
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Old 01-08-2022, 12:50 AM
Fusilier Fusilier is offline
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Nice read, Rae.
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Old 01-20-2022, 12:41 PM
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Raellus Raellus is offline
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Thanks, Fuse!

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https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...--Rooks-Gambit
https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...ula-Sourcebook
https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...nia-Sourcebook
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Old 01-20-2022, 05:01 PM
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Default Final Draft

The final draft incorporates some reader feedback.

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Author of Twilight 2000 adventure module, Rook's Gambit, and the campaign sourcebooks, Korean Peninsula, and Tara Romaneasca (Romania), available-

https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...--Rooks-Gambit
https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...ula-Sourcebook
https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...nia-Sourcebook
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