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  #31  
Old 06-02-2009, 02:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Targan
Umm, I know that most parts of the US have very liberal weapons laws compared to my country but surely that statement was made in jest? Are you telling me that it is easy (and affordable) for 16 year olds in Texas to get their hands on LAWs? If so its a wonder Texas doesn't have more bank jobs and armoured car robberies.
Gun laws here in Texas are liberal, but not that liberal. Hell, I can't even buy a firearm here due to mental illness.
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  #32  
Old 06-02-2009, 06:50 AM
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Legbreaker, Targan was correct. I was referring only to the European theater.

But two of the best canon sources, Twilight 2000: Referee's Manuel (pg. 25) and Challenge Magazine #31, USSR: 2000 (pg. 3), state rather clearly that tactical nuclear weapons were first used by the Soviets on July 9, 1997 in response to the NATO, and especially German, advance into Soviet territory. It was the use of tac-nukes that prompted the NATO withdrawal. Shortly there after the Soviets began to use them in China "on a massive scale", which differed from the limited shot-for-shot exchange occurring in Europe.

This account differs greatly from the timeline in the Survivors Guide to the UK; the last V1 book published, so I tend to see that book as French propaganda:-O

As for the Mexican invasion I am solidly on the "Mexico would need a much better military to pull it often even with the US in such a weakened state." With the Mexican Army 1998-2000 article in Challenge as the basis we could create a more believable invasion force without doing too much damage to canon. I have access to quiet a few Jane's Armour and Artillery books if anyone need some research done.

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  #33  
Old 06-02-2009, 07:08 AM
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Actually on the first use of nukes, if i remember right... It was the USSR that had used nukes in the European theater first. They used tactical nukes to try and stop the advance of the NATO forces spearheaded by the German First Army when they had crossed the pre-war Polish-Soviet border.

I have always felt that the reason why the Mexican army was able to make their advances against the US, was that there was a major build-up of the Mexican armed forces during the 1980s and 1990s by the United States in an effort to counter the strength and rapid growth of the pro-Soviet Communist governments in Central and South America. The Mexicans where able to use all that training, weapons, vehicles and equipment to make a major offensive into the United States South-West with the assistance of the Soviet Division Cuba, and supported by the other Latin American communist countries sending Expeditionary Troops to gain the honor of having nocked out the great captialist enemy of the workers all around the world.

As soon as i can, i'll be posting the alternate timeline i came up with that is heavily based upon the 1st Edition Twilight 2000 timeline....
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  #34  
Old 06-02-2009, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin
With the Mexican Army 1998-2000 article in Challenge as the basis we could create a more believable invasion force without doing too much damage to canon.
Benjamin, for those of us who don't have access to the article you mentioned, would you be so kind as to give us a brief synopsis? I'm really curious as to how the game designers chose to beef up the Mexican military.
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  #35  
Old 06-02-2009, 03:17 PM
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Besides bringing some of the regional battalions up to brigade strength I don't think that much was done to beef it up. It seems that the secret to the invasion was that the post strike chaos was such that the kinda waltzed in unopposed.

Even with the nuke strikes it was a bit far fetched. The left over military equipment in Texas alone could have stopped the Mexican Army. This is why we need to update the material.

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  #36  
Old 06-02-2009, 04:41 PM
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We're working on a few ideas. I'm on my way out the door now, but I'll try to get something up tomorrow evening (US time). It involves a change to US forces in Texas, nuclear attacks on Mexico, drug and criminal gangs infiltrating the US and the relative situation on both sides of the border. Plus, of course, French meddling (and arms sales) and extremist politics!
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  #37  
Old 06-02-2009, 10:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin
With the Mexican Army 1998-2000 article in Challenge as the basis we could create a more believable invasion force without doing too much damage to canon.
I treat the Challenge mag T2K articles as canon.
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  #38  
Old 06-04-2009, 08:58 AM
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As do I, Targan. But, there are some odd bits that don't make sense along with out right discrepancies. So with that in mind I don't feel too bad fiddling with the canon.

With the Challenge article as a foundation we could tweak the Mexican OrBat into a force more worthy of invading the US.

I personally always thought it odd that Cuba doesn't participate more in the war. I know V2 says that Cuba suffered some bombing (I can't remember if V1 has anything about Cuba.), but I think that both Castro and the Cuban exiles in Miami would be more willing to have at each other once the war got rolling. I'd add a another, albeit larger, Bay of Pigs, along with a Cuban Volunteer Force in Mexico. What would really be great would be a drop by a combined Cuban, Mexican and Soviet airborne force into Colorado in an attempt to decapitate MilGov. Just a little homage to Red Dawn for the players to enjoy;-)

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  #39  
Old 06-04-2009, 04:56 PM
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Ha! Red Dawn... Growing up in Colorado during the '80s, I can tell ya, Red Dawn scared the stuffing out of me. Fortunately, even in the late '90s of T2K canon, it would be highly improbable that the Russians could scrape together the transports to carry/drop even a single airborne regiment and fly them unimpeded all the way to Colorado (I know you know this).

Also, I'm not sure that a second Bay of Pigs is that plausible. The U.S. government would be able to lend the expatriate invasion force even less aid than was given in the first attempt and without heavy weapons and air/sea cover, it would be doomed to utter failure (like the first one). I can, however, see the Cubans sending an expedition force of their own along with Division Cuba. They have much to gain by doing so and not too much to lose. Unless... perhaps the Cubans stay out of the U.S. to avoid their own total destruction (I can't recall if any U.S. nukes actually struck cuba, according to canon).

I do see various Latin American nations throwing in their lot with Mexico in its invasion of the U.S.

Maybe a Division Gran Columbia, or Brigada Simon Bolivar made up of an official battalion from here and a regiment from there; maybe an all volunteer force made up of men from all over Latin America- kind of like the various foreign Waffen SS units (Viking and Nordland made up of Scandanavian Volunteers, Florian Geyer [sic] from Beligium, etc.). It would beef up the Mexican invasion force a bit and add an extra element of chaos/intrigue once the Mexican offensive grinds to a halt and the invasion force fragments into various warring factions/marauder bands.
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  #40  
Old 06-04-2009, 05:56 PM
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Looking at "Gateway to the Spanish Main", there's strong indications that Cuba is heavily involved in Africa (Angola springs to mind).
It's therefore highly possible Cuba simply didn't have the resources available to accompany Division Cuba into Mexico and then the US.
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  #41  
Old 06-04-2009, 06:28 PM
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While neither Red Dawn nor Bay of Pigs II: Return of the Cuban Expats is all that realistic, I often throw one or two of these quirky things into my version of Twilight: 2000.

As for the airborne assault, I thing Mexico and Cuba could scrape together enough aircraft and fuel to penetrate what remained of America's air defense in Fall of 1998. A mixed force of a battalion or two of Mexicans, Cubans and Soviets could land near Colorado Springs in an attempt to destroy MilGov and take out Gen. Cummings. It might be a suicide mission but could make for good role-playing opportunities.

Concerning Cuba, I always found it odd that the island wasn't given more attention given the decades of animosity. America would almost have to neutralize Cuba given how it sits astride a major shipping route leading to and from the Gulf Coast ports.

I think I'll start working on a revised Mexican Orbat along with Cuba's role during the Twilight War.

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  #42  
Old 06-04-2009, 10:30 PM
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I suppose it's possible. Heck, the U.S. air defense grid would have plenty of holes in it after the TDM. On the other hand, just a pair of fully armed F-15 could wipe out an entire airfleet of Soviet/Cuban transport aircraft. The Soviets don't have any true fleet carriers and Cuba's airforce is somewhat limited in its size and long-range capability so I don't see an airlift having much in the way of fighter cover. Where would it come from? Without it, an airdrop that far behind enemy lines wouldn't stand much of a chance if it was detected. How many U.S. airbases (non-nuked) would such an airlift (originating in Cuba, I would assume) have to bypass undetected? That's quite a long shot.

But hey, if it works for your T2K universe, go for it.

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  #43  
Old 06-04-2009, 11:42 PM
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As the Mexican/Soviet invasion didn't occur until quite late in the war, chances are that all the high tech, and even most of the lower tech older aircraft available to the US would have been shipped overseas or northward to counter the Soviets in Alaska and Quebec.
Any anti-air assets remaining in southern USA would undoubtably be almost entirely ground based guns - missiles also having been shipped to the warzones just like aircraft.

Therefore, there'd be little need for the invading Soviets and Mexicans to possess fighters beyond a handful to keep away armed Cessna's etc
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  #44  
Old 06-05-2009, 06:22 AM
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In the scenario I'm imagining, the assault would launch from Mexican airfields and would kick off a day or two after the ground invasion. This way attention would be focused on the fighting along the border, while the Mexican aircraft flew into the US on separate routes converging on Colorado Springs.

Mexico has 12 C-130s, but if we assume that they had a military build up prior to the start of the Twilight War they could have up wards of 48 Hercules. Let us say that the invasion was launched using half these numbers after stockpiling fuel for several months. This gives them the ability to drop 1,536 paratroopers, which could be raised a bit by making use of a few Soviet or Cuban transports brought in from Cuba. This gives the airborne attack about battalion strength.

That's not too bad for a surprise attack aimed at causing alarm and chaos behind American lines. Other single plane attacks could drop platoon strength attacks at other strategic targets within 1,000 miles of a Mexican airfield.

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  #45  
Old 06-05-2009, 04:25 PM
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Default mexican sourcebook

As I still play Twilight 2000 V1/2, and ran it at a gaming Convention last year (Origins in Ohio) I'd love to see you do that Mexican sourcebook, where will you post it when its done?
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  #46  
Old 06-07-2009, 03:26 PM
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Benjamin,

Where did the Soviet paratroops come from? How'd they get to Mexico at that stage in the war?

They'd probably be better off launching the attack before the ground invasion kicked off, with the planes taking off a couple of hours before the Mexican SF infiltration teams began their attacks on various U.S. military and C&C installations.

The drop on Colorado Springs would have the benefit of sowing confusion and panic and thusly hindering the response to the conventional invasion. Also, the Americans wouldn't be expecting it (or ready for the Mexican invasion in general). Waiting to launch the drops until after the ground invasion would have the Americans on the alert. Whatever air assets were available in CONUS would be cued and poised to support the American troops attempting to stem the Mexican tide. Yeah, most of the USAF's F-15 and F-16s would be overseas. But heck, a couple of F-4s- even a flight of old ANG/AFR Delta Darts (fresh out of mothballs, of course)- could tear an unescorted Mexican transport fleet to shreds. Even if the transports were flying in dribs and drabs on different vectors, losing just 2-3 would severely deplete the fighting power of the airborne troops. And forget about resupply.
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  #47  
Old 06-07-2009, 05:55 PM
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I envision the Soviet Airborne contingent to the invasion being a company sized unit sent to Cuba just prior to the invasion in Norway. Their initial purpose was to serve as a training cadre for the Cuban Airborne forces. The origional plan was for an airborne drop in Florida as a diversion from the Alaska invasion, but Cuba refused to cooperate. After the strategic nuclear exchange Cuba, which had not yet been hit by nukes, offered Division Cuba, which included the paratroopers, for service in Mexico.

Along with Division Cuba Castro, Raul not Fidel at this point, sent nearly two divisions worth of Cuban "volunteers" to Mexico. Included in this number was a brigade of paratroopers. These traveled to Mexico over a period of nearly a year on a variety of transports.

I believe you're right that launching the airborne assault a day before the ground assault would make more sense.

An interesting idea is using civilian airliners to launch the air assault. Would it be possible to parachute out of the rear doors of a major airliner such as the 747? Perhaps they could set the autopilot... everyone bails... and the airplane then goes along until crashing. I'm sure there'd be no shortage of unused passanger aircraft sitting around. Give them enough fuel for a one way trip and send them on their way.

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  #48  
Old 06-07-2009, 09:50 PM
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A very credible explanation for the presence of Soviet and Cuban airborne troops in Mexico. It seems, though, that such a force would be dropped in direct support of Division Cuba's operations in Texas.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin
An interesting idea is using civilian airliners to launch the air assault. Would it be possible to parachute out of the rear doors of a major airliner such as the 747? Perhaps they could set the autopilot... everyone bails... and the airplane then goes along until crashing. I'm sure there'd be no shortage of unused passanger aircraft sitting around. Give them enough fuel for a one way trip and send them on their way.
Heistmeister D.B. Cooper jumped out of the rear passenger loading ramp door of an in-flight 727 back in the '70s. It looks like he landed in a river and probably drowned, though.

I don't know if you could jump from a larger jetliner. 747s can fly low and slow enough to drop fire retardents on forest fires (there's a company that does the coversions a few miles from my house) so they could probably fly low and slow enough drop paratroopers.

Would there be regular international air service after the TDM, though? I've never really thought about it. The air traffic control system would be totally screwed up by '98. Probably not is my first reaction. So, I would think any suspicious radar contacts would be treated with suspicion, if not outright hostility.

Anyway, as far as I can tell, a Soviet-Cuban-Mexican airdrop in Colorado would go down as the longest-range large unit airborne operation in history, insofar as the distance from the front lines to the target DZ. Pretty audacious, if not downright suicidal.
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  #49  
Old 06-08-2009, 02:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin
Would it be possible to parachute out of the rear doors of a major airliner such as the 747?
Why not just land them on the tarmac of a civilian airport? Its been done before.

I've been a fan of the airborne concept myself. Not really probable (although not impossible), but more for nostalgic reasons (Red Dawn like you mentioned).

In my timeline, there were airborne drops to support the invasion. A couple battalion drops (not all para though - some landing and dismounting from planes on undefended civil airports) and some smaller platoon/company drops.

I have the Cuban's heavily involved in the Mexican campaign. At first they are reluctant to get involved, but eventually get drawn in. As do the addition to a couple other nations (Nicaragua and Venezuela).
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Old 06-08-2009, 04:55 AM
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If you're really set on airborne insertion, why not add a few plywood gliders?
On D-Day back in 1944, many of the aircraft were towing at least one, sometimes two gliders behind them. Didn't do much for manouverability or fuel consumption, and anyone inside the gliders were either suicidally brave or rediculously stupid/naive, but it was an effective means for dropping troops untrained with parachutes as well as heavier equipment like AT guns, jeeps and the like.
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  #51  
Old 06-08-2009, 05:44 AM
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How about a Spetznaz attack on Colorado Springs?

A Mexican C130 could be painted in US colours, fly north and drop a Spetznaz team in Colorado who would be tasked with infiltrating Milgov HQ and causing as much damage as possible. Presumably the Mexicans would have acquired lots of US Army equipment in Texas, so the Spetznaz could easily be disguised as American troops.

Rather than being a suicide mission, the Spetznaz might be able to take advantage of the chaos and confusion that they had caused to get clear of the area (especially if still disguised as Americans) and make their way back to Texas overland.
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  #52  
Old 06-08-2009, 09:49 AM
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I feel the need to chime in here. I never bought the “leftist-Marxist” government in Mexico premise of the original timeline even when I was 10. Considering the support the U.S. gave right wing military governments in the rest of Latin America through the 70’s and 80’s, there is no way we would have allowed that to happen in Mexico.

Mexico may have elected some kind of green/catholic socialist/land reform party, but they would never have provided the military with the resources to threaten the U.S. Other than organizing some kind of labor movement among agricultural workers, I could not even imagine an expansionist “leftist” government in Mexico.

The only way I could ever reconcile a Mexican invasion of the U.S. (which is a cool gaming idea) is a military Junta. I could see the Cubans aligned with a Mexican Junta because the Junta could still be a populist movement, but not a Marxist one.

O.K. I loved Red Dawn and played Fortress America and though the SDI system was a good idea. However, Regan never, ever, ever, ever would have allowed anything resembling the Sandinistas to take power in Mexico.
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Old 06-08-2009, 10:31 AM
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I totally agree that with a continuing Cold War no leftist government would be allowed in Mexico. This whole thing started as a thought experiment to have a legitimate Mexican invasion with the possibility of success. I added an airborne assault into Colorado as a wink-wink to the cult classic, Red Dawn.

Having a smaller Spetznaz attack makes more sense but is a bit less fun for those wishing to play out a Red Dawn scenario.
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  #54  
Old 06-08-2009, 11:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Turboswede
O.K. I loved Red Dawn and played Fortress America...
Fortress America! What a blast from the past. I used to make my little brother be the foreign invaders every time we played. Talk about an improbable scenario. It was still a fun game though.

Leg, gliders take a lot of practice to fly and land properly. In fact, it would probably be easier from a cost/logistics standpoint to train up a new regiment of parachute troops than to design and build a new type of military glider and train pilots to fly it (and train the "tug" pilots to tow it). I don't think gliders have been used in combat since WWII and there are definitely many good reasons for that. And towing gliders is one of the only things I don't think a C-130 has ever done before.

Benjamin, I'm not trying to shoot down your idea. I'm just trying to rationalize it in my own mind. How about this? Spetznaz, either parachuted in disguised as Americans or landed in a legit civilian airliner, take over an airport/airfield while Mexican commandos, infiltrated over the border in the months leading up to the invasion, attack radar installations along the follow-up flight path. This would allow a large force of parachute troops and/or just regular infantry to both drop from Mexican military aircraft and land in regular civilian jetliners. It could also allow some follow up resupply aircraft to sneak through. I think eventually, though, the USAF and ground based AA would be able to close that air corridor. But, for a couple of weeks, at least, the Soviet-Mexican (maybe Cuban also) airborne/airmobile force would be able to wreak havoc in Colorado.
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  #55  
Old 06-08-2009, 11:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin
I totally agree that with a continuing Cold War no leftist government would be allowed in Mexico.
Mexico's ruling government during most of the last century, the PRI, was a really a broad coalition of many different political philosophies including many center-left groups.

I think this is where the French come in to play. If Mexico was leaning towards a sort of Western European socialism- like what the French had going on in the '80s and '90s- especially if it was openly supported/encouraged by the French, the U.S. would probably accept it. They wouldn't be too happy about it, but a moderate center-left government, retaining strong ties to the U.S. and the West, wouldn't be seen as too much of a threat. It may actually be seen pragmatically as somewhat of a buffer or mediating force between the right-leaning U.S. (of the '80s and early '90s) and the more leftist, Soviet-influenced countries of the rest of Latin America.

This also sets up the French as a major player in the region prior to the war starting and would help justify a massive French arms deal for the Mexicans, making them stronger and the successful (at least initially) invasion of the southern U.S. more plausible.
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  #56  
Old 06-08-2009, 12:38 PM
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Default OT—Fortress America

I still love Fortress America. One of my long-term start-again-stop-again projects has been to create an on-line page devoted to Fortress America. In my experience, it’s entirely possible for the invaders to win, but they need a bit of luck and more than a bit of skill. Even more so than Axis & Allies, Fortress America is a game of psychological warfare.

One change some friends and I have used for years is to place the invasion zones off-limits to lasers. We found that the entire game could be unhinged by as few as three laser hits on Euro-Socialist Pact bombers early in the game. While possibly a reflection of how hard a real world invasion of the continental US would be, we found that we preferred a game in which the US would have to work harder. In fact, we played that way so long (since the game came out) that we rather forgot that the rules allow lasers to target units in the invasion zones.

Webstral
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Old 06-08-2009, 02:33 PM
Benjamin Benjamin is offline
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Raellus, I think there is a very fine line between the far right and far left sides of the political spectrum. While Mexico could get away with having a European style socialist government, it would not be able to have a near communist government that nationalized foreign assets. What is possible is that a right-leaning coalition backed by the military holds control from the late eighties until the nuclear exchange whereupon they are overthrown by a leftist government that sides with Cuba and the Soviet Union.

Is anyone else working on a Mexican Sourcebook? If not I may give it a try though my Spanish is very poor. I think I'll stick mostly to the military side of things with only limited references to the politics behind the invasion. Most major weapon systems will be of French and Chinese origins.

As for Mexican war aims, I would have their goal be to seize the large Mexican-American population centers within Texas and California. The Mexican leadership is working under the naive belief that these ex-Mexicans will welcome the Mexican Army as saviors, given the chaos that exists in the US. By "liberating" these Mexicans they hope to unite the fractured Mexican populace by holding America up as an external threat requiring Mexicans to unite together.

A secondary war aim is to seize the remaining oil producing regions of the American Southwest. This would give Mexico a step up in its recovery efforts. Even though many of the oil production facilities have been destroyed holding the well heads would give Mexico a major advantage in the near future.

Finally, Mexico hopes to position itself in such a way as to allow a quicker recovery than that of America. This would allow Mexico to possible reverse the political situation that has traditionally existed between Mexico and the US. This would allow Mexico to become the dominant nation in Central America and the Caribbean.

Benjamin
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Old 06-08-2009, 06:54 PM
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Legbreaker Legbreaker is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raellus
Leg, gliders take a lot of practice to fly and land properly. In fact, it would probably be easier from a cost/logistics standpoint to train up a new regiment of parachute troops than to design and build a new type of military glider and train pilots to fly it (and train the "tug" pilots to tow it). I don't think gliders have been used in combat since WWII and there are definitely many good reasons for that. And towing gliders is one of the only things I don't think a C-130 has ever done before.
They probably haven't been used since 1945, however I can imagine a severe shortage of parachutes in Mexico in 2000 so gliders made from the much more common and available plywood, etc, would likely be a necessity.
Granted there'd be a bit of a shortage of pilots to fly them, but nothing a few hours training couldn't fix (or a swift knock to the head to reduce the "pilots" common sense and self preservation).
I'm guessing there'd be at least one pilot available with some experience of gliders as a prewar hobby, both flying them and piloting the tug aircraft. Their experience would be invaluable in reducing basic mistakes.

Still, you wouldn't catch me within ten miles of the deathtraps!
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