RPG Forums

Go Back   RPG Forums > Role Playing Game Section > Twilight 2000 Forum

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 09-10-2008, 03:56 AM
kato13's Avatar
kato13 kato13 is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Chicago, Il USA
Posts: 3,352
Send a message via ICQ to kato13
Default Headcount in 2000 formations

Webstral 07-28-2008, 02:17 PM I know it has been discussed before, but I’d like to take up the matter of headcount in Y2k and 2k1 formations. For instance, 95th Infantry Division (90th Corps, 5th US Army) has a given manpower strength of 2000 on or about 01 APR 01. In a pre-war infantry brigade, maybe half of those people would be combat arms. Obviously, things have changed somewhat by 2001.


Canon mentions that all of the armed forces turn increasingly to local civilians to handle administration. I presume this includes basically all CSS (combat service support) functions. A few of the less-risky combat support jobs might also be amenable to farming out to the locals. This leads me to two questions: how many riflemen does one get in 95th ID when the division has a headcount of two thousand, and does the presence of so many civilians turn a formation into a heavily-armed local defense force?


Obviously, the mix of civilians-to-soldiers is going to change from formation to formation. From mid-1997 onward there will be a diminishing level of standardization for anything. Nevertheless, the trend of putting those in uniform into rifle platoons will be pretty consistent everywhere. The vacated jobs will have to be done by somebody, even with belt-tightening measures in place.


I’m going to turn to 43rd MP Brigade for a moment, as I have been doing a bit of work on New England over the summer. “The Last Submarine” gives the combat strength of the brigade as 800 effectives in early 2001. Basically, this is a big battalion. The number of rifles can be significantly extended if the brigade staff is mostly civilians, the battalion commands and staffs are eliminated, and the transportation, maintenance, medical, and other support jobs are filled principally by civilians. It might be necessary to put an MP in charge of each section or platoon. In this event, as many as 700 MPs might be organized into rifle platoons, the remainder being command and staff, artillery and mortars, and other sorts that can’t be replaced by civilians.


With so many civilians performing support jobs, the MPs might not be capable of moving. The cantonment might become a permanent center of gravity, regardless of what MilGov might want (in the event the brigade were to accept orders from MilGov). Going back to 95th ID, the division might be locked into its cantonments by the presence of so many non-combatants. On the other hand, I know throughout history many armies have dragged significant trains of non-combatants behind them. It wouldn’t be hard to imagine that some commanders would insist that the civilians pack up and move out with the formation that employs them. On the other hand, it would be very easy for me to imagine that the civilians might simply refuse to budge—especially if the whole complex of CSS jobs was being filled by civilians. Add in the natural tendency of the troops to acquire wives among the local population, and the unit might grow some deep and powerful roots. It’s a real problem.


One of the issues I have been trying to work into my history of “Thunder Empire” is the struggle by Fort Huachuca to turn 111th MI Brigade from a powerful local defense force into a formation capable of taking to the field for an extended period. During the initial reorganization in 1998, 111th Brigade focuses on getting as many rifles into the field as possible. The CS jobs get filled by retirees brought back into service, EPWs who already possess the requisite skills, and those civilians who have the right skills. (There are lots of the first group around Fort Huachuca in 1997 in real life; there are several thousand EPWs living in temporary barracks at Huachuca in 1997 as a result of the war; and since the populations of Cochise and Pinal Counties don’t en masse of starvation and dehydration in the first half of 1998, there are some people with the right skills alive and available for drafting.)


One reason the Thunder Empire remains so small throughout the 1998-2000 timeframe is that the mass of manpower isn’t very deployable. There is, of course, the problem of hostile Mexican Army forces camped across the border. However, in conjunction with the threat to their cantonment, the rifles can’t go very far afield because they can’t be supported for very long in the interior of Arizona. Following the fighting of Summer 1998, the 111th rebuilds for maximum strength in a local defense. As a result, Arizona north and west of Cochise, Pinal, and Santa Cruz Counties are pretty much cut loose to go their own ways. Thus the state government receives no support whatsoever from the 111th when Phoenix descends into chaos in mid-1998.


In late 1999, Huachuca starts to get serious about building the power projection of the 111th. This means putting uniformed service members in more of the CS and CSS positions within the brigade because few civilians will go on a months-long campaign to liberate Phoenix from the surviving gangs, liberate Yuma from the Mexican Army, or destroy Mexican forces in southern New Mexico.


Elsewhere, commanders might have more luck with getting the civilians to accompany the troops on long-range missions. On the other hand, the iron-fisted might simply inspire rebellion amongst the civilians and/or some of the troops.


Getting back to the original questions, it seems to me that the listed manpower represents a much higher concentration of combat arms troops than would a similar pre-war headcount; by the same token, the number of civilians performing CSS jobs (and some CS jobs) would dramatically reduce the ability of the formation to undertake any kind of extended campaign. I wonder how NATO dealt with this during the Summer 2000 campaign into Poland?


Webstral

********************

Raellus 07-28-2008, 08:05 PM Good post Webstral.


One could assume that the unit strengths listed in the various T2K materials are for the numbers of combat troops in that unit. One could then come up with a number for non-combat, support troops, many of whom could be local volunteers or "civilian contractors". This would be easier than trying to figure out what proportion of the total unit strength listed is combat vs. what proportion is support. It would also make the units capable of more in the way of combat ops.


As for how logistics were handled in Poland c. 2000, I believe that armies would operate much like their pre-20th century counterparts did. I would suppose that the better part of the preceding spring would have been spent stockpiling food and other necessary goods. These goods would be loaded up into a modern day "wagon train" and would follow behind the combat arms' schwerpunkt [sic]. Once the stockpiled supplies ran out, the troops would rely on readily available forage and when that was exhausted, the offensive would end.


On a "raid" (a term used in canon to describe most offensive operations post '98), the unit would return to its cantonment after wreaking havoc in enemy (or disputed) territory. In this case, the civilians attached to CSS would be able to return to their homes after the operation, probably making this an attractive employment option for many of the able-bodied locals. In a true offensive, the goal would probably be occupation of a new, formerly enemy held or disputed, cantonment area. In this case, perhaps the local CSS folks would be given a parcel in the conquered territory as incentive for their loyal service. The Romans did it that way.

********************

copeab 07-29-2008, 07:27 AM One could assume that the unit strengths listed in the various T2K materials are for the numbers of combat troops in that unit.



Page 230 of V2:


"The following is a listing of major Warsaw Pact units in the area, along with their strength in combat troops ..."


Brandon

********************

Raellus 07-29-2008, 04:57 PM Brandon, I can never tell if you're trying to be helpful or merely snarky. I wonder if I've written something in the past that upset you.


Back to the topic at hand, I think that T2K armies would adopt the U.S.M.C.'s philosophy of "every man a rifleman". Especially with a fluid "front", everyone in uniform could expect to fight at some point or another.

********************

Law0369 07-29-2008, 07:26 PM I agree with rae...It takes us about 28 days to do Marine combat training. easy to do on large scale with enough people .

********************

DeaconR 07-29-2008, 07:58 PM Hm. There are a few factors that might be involved though.


1. General business. When is there time for this training and can the personnel be spared?


2. Arms and ammunition. Is there enough? I know we're talking about the USA in this case but would there be?


3. The ideas. Clearly if someone like say Law was in charge this would happen. Would people like the officers commanding the 43rd, wrapped up in their intrigues and paranoia really think ahead like that? Not every unit's senior officers are going to be so on the ball. In fact I think it makes it more interesting that they wouldn't be, human nature being what it is. And we've all known more than our share of authorities who fear change rather than roll with it.

********************

copeab 07-29-2008, 08:13 PM Brandon, I can never tell if you're trying to be helpful or merely snarky. I wonder if I've written something in the past that upset you.



I was just commenting on what's in the rules. I was trying to be helpful but obviously failed.


Brandon

********************

Raellus 07-29-2008, 08:23 PM 1. General business. When is there time for this training and can the personnel be spared?


2. Arms and ammunition. Is there enough? I know we're talking about the USA in this case but would there be?


3. The ideas. Clearly if someone like say Law was in charge this would happen. Would people like the officers commanding the 43rd, wrapped up in their intrigues and paranoia really think ahead like that? Not every unit's senior officers are going to be so on the ball. In fact I think it makes it more interesting that they wouldn't be, human nature being what it is. And we've all known more than our share of authorities who fear change rather than roll with it.


Glad to see you back on the board DeaconR!


Good questions. First off, let me clarify. I'm not quite suggesting that all units would be able to train their troops (many of them former CSS) as riflemen as well as the USMC does. Clearly, that would be the exception not the rule. My point was really that, with very few exceptions, there wouldn't be any "safe" , REMF-type jobs in the T2K world. Canon strongly suggests that there are very few secure, "rear areas" in central Europe, and danger abounds (rogue units, local warlords, marauders, the enemy, etc.). Everyone would have to be ready to fight at a moment's notice and folks would soon amass OTJ training that would supplement basic.


1. Winter in cantonment a-la Valley Forge. Supposedly, Baron Von Steuben did wonders teaching the Continental volunteers the finer points of European style drill. Since canon strongly suggests that major offensive operations are suspended in winter, it would be a decent time to conduct supplemental training.


2. This would be tough. Perhaps low-grade, locally produced reloads could be used for training, saving the better ammo for combat ops. Dry firing would be common, although not particularly helpful.


3. Sure, some units might neglect supplemental combat training. Some units might get away with it. Many of these units, however, would probably not last very long against those that took the time and put forth the effort. Darwin would be pleased.


I'm mostly thinking about units in central Europe but this would likely be applicable in the more contested parts of CONUS as well.

********************

Raellus 07-29-2008, 08:30 PM I was just commenting on what's in the rules. I was trying to be helpful but obviously failed.



My bad. I was just checking.

********************

Targan 07-30-2008, 12:15 AM I was trying to be helpful but obviously failed.That happens to me alot.

********************

thefusilier 07-30-2008, 02:03 AM Doesn't it mention somewhere in the main book that unit headcounts are about 10% bigger with non-combat support added in. It seems familiar to me but maybe I just made it up.


Brandon (the other one)

********************

kcdusk 07-30-2008, 02:53 AM i admit i have not read all the posts here, especially the long ones at the start. So i just have a general comment on troop numbers to add.


In my view, troop numbers (pact or nato) and even their rediness and equipment is largely irrellevant. Most T2K encounters, in my experience, are pre-determined or taken from the random tables. And so given that, troop numbers and fitting out is largely irrelevant. To me it doesnt impact on encounters, so working out troop numbers is a waste of time.


I know some posters here live by them, and others have gone so far as to work out troop details for different parts of the USA. But its not for me. I guess if my "hometown" or "state" was in a source book or something then i might be more interested. In my T2K work the "bigger picture" doesnt matter that much.

********************

TiggerCCW UK 07-30-2008, 03:28 AM i admit i have not read all the posts here, especially the long ones at the start. So i just have a general comment on troop numbers to add.


In my view, troop numbers (pact or nato) and even their rediness and equipment is largely irrellevant. Most T2K encounters, in my experience, are pre-determined or taken from the random tables. And so given that, troop numbers and fitting out is largely irrelevant. To me it doesnt impact on encounters, so working out troop numbers is a waste of time.


I know some posters here live by them, and others have gone so far as to work out troop details for different parts of the USA. But its not for me. I guess if my "hometown" or "state" was in a source book or something then i might be more interested. In my T2K work the "bigger picture" doesnt matter that much.


I could have written that - its pretty much exactly how I feel. In my Twilight world the PC's usually just want to steer clear of the big formations - either they'll end up getting killed, captured or press ganged!

********************

DeaconR 07-30-2008, 08:54 AM I find that fleshing out units with numbers, history etc is very helpful. The Poland adventures are good examples of this. I loved the amount of detail in them, right down to describing the bunkers in Krakow. You never know what a pc group will do and this kind of info can be invaluable. Also as a gm I like to have the big picture in mind. For example if the game material says that a Soviet division has gone marauder (at least towards foreigners and enemies) then reading things like that the 2000 man strong unit has broken into groups of about 200 tells me a lot. That pcs are likely to encounter large groups of marauders in a given area, that they will be wearing the same uniform and so on. Of course I could make all this up but then why am I paying for it or downloading it? If I'm going to pay for or download something I want someone else to do the work.

********************

simonmark6 07-30-2008, 09:30 AM I also agree with several posters that the given strengths of units would be combat strengths, but I feel a lot of the "combat troops" in 2000 would once have been "rear echelon", if you're going to replace front line troops, people trained in your way of doing things would be useful. Most Americans in an American Division, I think, would be combat troops with the rear echelons filled by locals apart from key skilled and organisational posts.


As for training, I think all divisions would be likely to do this, ammo would be a problem, I agree so it might be interesting to see what people would concentrate on training novices if ammo was short?

********************

copeab 07-30-2008, 09:46 AM I also agree with several posters that the given strengths of units would be combat strengths, but I feel a lot of the "combat troops" in 2000 would once have been "rear echelon", if you're going to replace front line troops, people trained in your way of doing things would be useful. Most Americans in an American Division, I think, would be combat troops with the rear echelons filled by locals apart from key skilled and organisational posts.


As I understand it, modern divisions tend to be more bloated by non-combat troops than WWII divisions. Given the breakdown of supply lines and all the lost vehicles, there may not be much need to replace most of the non-combat troops moved to combat roles.


I would imagine troops like clerks, cooks and such would tend to be given less important jobs than regular riflemen.


As for training, I think all divisions would be likely to do this, ammo would be a problem, I agree so it might be interesting to see what people would concentrate on training novices if ammo was short?


Single-shot black powder smoothbore muskets ...


then crossbows ...


then rocks ...


then pointed sticks


Brandon

********************

Webstral 07-30-2008, 05:04 PM Deacon, I tend to agree with your sentiments about knowing the big picture. Obviously, it's all a matter of personal taste. However, I feel like knowing who controls what area makes the encounters much more realistic. I remember playing D&D years ago. We had a couple of DMs. One would put together these random dungeons in which the pieces made no real sense together. We killed some creatures and acquired some treasure--all of which was fun. The other DM had created a whole world in which the adventure had a part, much like Middle Earth. Dungeons had designs and a purpose that fit with someone's scheme, whether past or present. Playing with this DM was fun in an entirely different way. It's all a matter of taste, of course. I tend to prefer feeling that there is intent--even to the random encounters.


Webstral

********************

TiggerCCW UK 07-30-2008, 05:22 PM I agree with what you say Web, and I would use source books as a guide to who the PC's are more likely to encounter in a given area. However, for the purposes of the game it doesn't relly matter whether there are 200 or 2000 soviet troops in an area - if the PC's run into a large group from either size they are likely to die anyway.

********************

copeab 07-30-2008, 05:49 PM I agree with what you say Web, and I would use source books as a guide to who the PC's are more likely to encounter in a given area. However, for the purposes of the game it doesn't relly matter whether there are 200 or 2000 soviet troops in an area - if the PC's run into a large group from either size they are likely to die anyway.


Even one skilled sniper can wipe out a party.


Brandon

********************

TiggerCCW UK 07-30-2008, 05:56 PM Very true, which is why the party needs to be careful regardless of where they think they are and how safe it appears to be.

********************

DeaconR 07-30-2008, 07:57 PM Getting back to the original topic, let's say we're talking about Europe. What happens to these civilians when their units move out for Operation Omega or for the British evacuations?

********************

thefusilier 07-30-2008, 08:25 PM Getting back to the original topic, let's say we're talking about Europe. What happens to these civilians when their units move out for Operation Omega or for the British evacuations?


Thats one of the themes to the only novelized work of Twilight2000 that I've come across. That 'Black Winter' work talks about how dependents and cantonments interact. The BAOR for example only has enough ships to pull out the troops first... that means who will protect the dependents? It goes into further detail than what I can remember but interesting nevertheless.


http://www.blackwinter.freeservers.com/Front.htm

********************

Raellus 07-30-2008, 10:38 PM Getting back to the original topic, let's say we're talking about Europe. What happens to these civilians when their units move out for Operation Omega or for the British evacuations?


I think that many of them would desert and head back home as their "parent" unit was preparing to board the ships, maybe earlier depending on where they were from (Poland mostly). I think this would be accepted if not encouraged by the brass. It would mean fewer ships and smaller amounts of provisions needed to get the "national" troops back home.


Of course, some of the indigenous recruits and perhaps their families would opt to leave along with their U.S./British units. Perhaps some of the Anglo-American troops would have married local women and sired children. I wonder how commanders would handle them.


I'm not sure if or how Going Home or other source materials address this issue. I suppose it would be up to the generals in charge of the evacuation, and to a lesser extent, the unit commanders.


But, since these units are leaving from Germany, with the blessing of the German military gov. (I have a few problems with this, but I won't muck up the thread by going into them again here...), I don't think that you would see a Fall of Saigon type frantic evacuation with thousands of fearful locals desperately clinging to heli skids trying to get out before the communists rush in and ship them off to reeducation camps (or worse).

********************

kcdusk 07-31-2008, 01:55 AM The only time i have been interested in troop strengths is when i had it in my head to try massed combat ... there are some rules in one of the mods (free city of Krakow maybe).

********************

Targan 07-31-2008, 02:02 AM The mass combat rules are in Ruins of Warsaw. Also the Last Battle boxed set.

********************
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
webstral


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Anyone else use MPC?/Pay Day 2000 natehale1971 Twilight 2000 Forum 4 06-09-2009 02:51 PM
Merc 2000 TiggerCCW UK Twilight 2000 Forum 18 02-22-2009 08:27 AM
twiligth 2000 reenacting Brother in Arms Twilight 2000 Forum 2 01-14-2009 07:01 PM
Twilight 2000 Scooter Canadian Army Twilight 2000 Forum 3 12-22-2008 05:24 PM
Thunder Empire Formations kato13 Twilight 2000 Forum 0 09-10-2008 03:58 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:05 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.