Turn 8 - Clash of the Titans : Across the Dnepre

General Keating continues his grinding attack in the North.

Keating must be feeling some pressure from above, as he’s willing to attack at low odds (above) in order to force a breakthrough. Another hex is gained, but another Recon unit is left looking exposed. I wonder what will happen to them?

In the south, Keating figures that two failed river crossings will have lulled Trout into a false sense of superiority, and that he’ll never expect another one. Keating must have been bitten by a horse in his childhood because, once again, it’s the Cavalry who are flung across the river and left exposed. I wonder what will happen to them?

Comrade General Trout continues to enjoy Red Banner days. I do hope he is assiduous in assigning all the credit to his Commissar, his commanding officers and the personal example and direction of Comrade Stalin. Too much success can look so much like presumption.

The exposed recon unit near VELIZH is duly eliminated (see above) and not one but two German regiments (including one full strength infantry regiment) eliminated south of SHKLOV (see below).

SHKLOV shouldn’t be too hard a nut to crack. It’s Town rather than Urban terrain, so at 10:1 odds there’s a 50% chance of forcing a retreat and the fact that it’s on the ‘German’ side of the river should make achieving those odds much easier. The terrain south of SHKLOV on the ‘Russian’ side of the river is Clear. Keating needs to take time to set things up, massing his assault forces on one turn and attacking the next, ensuring that a large force of attackers can get across the river, not just one or two units. If care is taken to leave retreat paths for the bridgehead units, then even a successful Russian counter-attack will only cause minimal damage, and the counter-attacking units will invite their own destruction by hanging around.

However, for all Trout’s defensive coups, he must still be worried about Keating’s direct drive on SMOLENSK. Trout will soon run out of good defensive terrain and while he undoubtedly has the local Babushkas digging anti-tank ditches, these won’t slow Keating’s panzers for very long.