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  #11  
Old April 2nd, 2017, 10:38 AM

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Default Re: Vital Airfield

A question: why Soviet infantry have their transport in separate formations?
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  #12  
Old April 2nd, 2017, 10:49 AM
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Default Re: Vital Airfield

Which infantry......which formations ?
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Old April 2nd, 2017, 12:33 PM

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Default Re: Vital Airfield

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Which infantry......which formations ?
All Soviet line infantry (both mech and naval) companies have their transports in this scenario in separate units. It is probably a bonus for the AI, as it will make easier to pass rally checks.
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  #14  
Old April 2nd, 2017, 05:37 PM
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Default Re: Vital Airfield

Mostly it's at attempt to reduce the amount of time the transports spend picking up and dropping off the same infantry unit over-an-over and not actually moving. Additionally it permits the infantry and transports to use different movement paths and have slightly different objectives.

And no ... I didn't use existing formations Don ... I made my own for the scenario.
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  #15  
Old April 2nd, 2017, 06:22 PM
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Default Re: Vital Airfield

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I'll be curious to see what our resident Swedish expert thinks!
The Operation Garbo novels from the 1980s deals with a fictional isolated Soviet attack on Sweden and Finland. In this story most of Gotland is lost in the early fighting but is recaptured by the USMC - as NATO sort of gets involved - in an amphibious operation with the hilarious name "Gotland Grab"...




Gotland Brigade (PB18) did indeed have Centurion and the old "KP-Bil" type wheeled APCs. I'm a little surprised you knew this....

There are a few other peculiarities to Bunge/Gotland that are probably hard to know unless one is a Swedish speaker or works in the Russian military intelligence....
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Old April 3rd, 2017, 03:24 AM
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Default Re: Vital Airfield

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Gotland Brigade (PB18) did indeed have Centurion and the old "KP-Bil" type wheeled APCs. I'm a little surprised you knew this....

There are a few other peculiarities to Bunge/Gotland that are probably hard to know unless one is a Swedish speaker or works in the Russian military intelligence....
I generally try to research the equipment/manpower in particular units when I reference them directly in a scenario. Of course you rarely get everything 100%, but one must try.

I think I've mentioned that during my military career I was an Intel Analyst for a few years. After all the information you give your CO better be as accurate as you can possibly manage or why even bother to have you around.
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  #17  
Old April 3rd, 2017, 08:59 AM
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Default Re: Vital Airfield

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I generally try to research the equipment/manpower in particular units when I reference them directly in a scenario. Of course you rarely get everything 100%, but one must try.
Yeah, and I assume there is maybe not that much availiable, and especially not in English...

Anti-Air on Gotland relied on RBS-70 and older 40mm lvakan (Bofors guns) in 1989. Most of these had only day/good weather capability.

There was one RBS 70 Bn - the 37th. And if IIRC about three or four companies with 40mm. The Brigade 18th AA Company had Rb 69 Red Eye SAMs.

The RBS-90 (which I served with in northern Sweden) was more capable, could be used at night and did at this time not trigger the aircraft warning systems – but they first arrived on Gotland in the mid 90s. Because of this shortage in range - on a number of occasions – the high altitude RBS 67/77 (HAWK/IHAWK) was deployed temporarily on Gotland to provide better SAM range.

Bunge was a World War II era air strip. It was too short for modern jets but figured in the planing for use as a (naval) helicopter base. Also, an airmobile assault – maybe using a large number of helicopters - against Gotland in a coup like fashion was a particular concern for the officers of MKG (“Military Command Gotland”), it being the closest territory to the Soviet Union. Counterattacks against airfields, esp. Visby, was a standard type of exercise.

Normally the armoured battalions (Bn:s 1, 2 and 3) of the brigade was deployed independently in order to avoid being tied up needlessly in combat before the counterattack. Ideally it was to attack with two battalions abreast, and one trailing against an enemy bridge head or landing zone. It could draw on heavy artillery support as the brigade wielded as many 10,5cm batteries as it had tank or mech inf companies. Other artillery support was also possible from the local defence (tractor drawn, less mobile than the brigade artillery but with the same calibre), or the Coastal Artillery which had the strongest concentration in the north of Gotland, some with heavier guns. Depending on the situation this supposedly decisive counterattack could also be reinforced with a fourth armoured battalion (each of the three territorial areas – GK, 701. Combat Group, 703. Combat Group – fielded their own armoured battalion in addition to a number of local defence units. The ambition was to win quickly in a very offensive manner. The officers on Gotland were not great believers in a war of attrition with the WP.
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Old April 3rd, 2017, 09:18 AM
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Default Re: Vital Airfield

The Swedish Naval Force was made up of two branches, one was the Navy (“The Costal Fleet”) and the other the Coastal Artillery. The Coastal Artillery operated a number of fixed artillery batteries and so called mine stations (a bunker from where propositioned sea mines could be detonated), but also had mobile artillery units (battery strength or Bn size, the so called “Blocking Battalions” of wich there was one on Gotland, the Bn had 7.5cm guns and Rb52 anti-ship missiles), amphibious light infantry units (normally no light inf on Gotland though) and operated smaller naval craft. Bunge was the mobilization location for the mobile 7th Coastal Artillery Battery (15,2cm m/37B guns - not in the OOB). Its intended primary area of operations was however Östergarnslandet further south. Near Bunge on Bungenäs just outside the game map there was the fixed Battery BN (with three turrets of two 15,2cm m/51 guns each, also not in the OOB). The primary mission of the Costal Artillery was to engage enemy ships, esp. landing efforts, but could in a pinch also be used for ground targets. Because the brigade and local defence artillery battalions all had 10,5cm guns it was popular among the army to request support from the heavy CA units when traning.

The Swedish Navy – for much of the 1980s the Navy suffered from lack of funding and some odd command decisions. By 1989 it had seen a lot of use in the anti-submarine field ("We're fighting a war under the water", the commander of the Coastal Fleet claimed) and received some new craft and more powerful anti-ship missiles (RBS 15) that gave it a more credibility as an anti-invasion tool.


The Swedish Air Force – throughout the cold war the air force was given priority. It's attack resources were pooled into E1 (1st Attack Wing), sometimes called the heavy club. It's first mission, for which the pilots trained extensively, was attack against a seaborne invasion. In case of invasion the idea was to press home attacks ruthlessly but not piecemeal. About three strong sorties were expected to be possible against the “invasion cake” before it reached the Swedish coast. The air force was willing to trade heavy losses among planes and air crew for the chance at delivering a crippling blow at sea. Especially Soviet escort craft was to be targeted. Sink enough and the rest would have to turn back or be massacred by the next layers of defence, the navy and close to shore the coastal artillery. Some argue that the Soviets would also have been equally willing to throw men, air craft and ships into the battle, and that their strong AA defences would have cleared the skies. In the Falklands the British had less air defence assets - but it is said that the Argentinians would have stopped the British effort had only all the bombs that hit British ships exploded. And the Argentininas had long distances to the operations areas and were mostly not trained for anti-ship operations...

In numbers the Air Force dwarfed that of the other nordic countries - Finland, Norway, Denmark - it had more planes than the others combined.

While the army depended heavily on mobilisation to flesh out the war time units, the navy (in 1989) and especially the air force did not.

For the army one problem with mobilisation was that there was not enough people on Gotland to fill up the units intended to be used there so bodies had to be drawn from the mainland. If mobilisation was not ordered before the war started getting the people there could be a problem..., it was however not uncommon to field excersises with this problem in mind.
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  #19  
Old April 3rd, 2017, 02:56 PM
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Default Re: Vital Airfield

I'm assuming the Soviets already have a foothold on Gotland, thus some of their heavier forces are available and the Swedish Naval and Air Forces are busy fighting for their lives elsewhere, thus no naval forces for either side in this battle and while the Soviet first strike is fairly impressive in WinSPMBT terms it's a fraction of what it could/should be. As is the USMC air ... the air war over Gotland is hot and heavy,

Previous battles have depleted PB18's artillery and what's left of it's other two armored Bn's are have been combined are are also elsewhere. This map, of course, only covers a fraction of Gotland.

I didn't know the airfield was so marginal for modern aircraft ... that actually changes the entire thing! But I guess we'll just have to live with it.
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  #20  
Old April 3rd, 2017, 04:01 PM
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Default Re: Vital Airfield

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I didn't know the airfield was so marginal for modern aircraft ... that actually changes the entire thing! But I guess we'll just have to live with it.
Unless the Soviet objective is to use it as a helicopter base. Gotland does not have many large size ports - basically it's Visby and Slite - it could maybe be a creative way to overcome the supply problem..., which I assume the bulk of would have to come over the beach otherwise.

Visby airfield was used for military air, but from the Soviet perspective it's on the "wrong" side of the Island with the strongest concentration of Swedish units.

The Swedish defences on the southern part of the island were weaker but there were no larger size ports in this southern area, and in some areas difficult shallow waters.

I made a crude map on the intended initial (intended) deployments according to the operations order for 1980 of GK ("Gotland Coastal Defence" which was one of there teritorial commands under CMKG. It was dominated by the coastal artillery).

There were more units than this, a bunch of supply/depot/administrative etc units. The Furilden Radar Site had it's own dedicated AA and infantry detachments and there were at least five Vkomp (Värnkompani, roughly Fortified Company) manning bunkers and other fixed positions in GK. Mostly older, but local conscrips...

25. Minesweeper and 5. MUL Div (seamine warfare) were navy units, not relevant here.

18th Bde Engineer Coy was for most of it's existance deployed near Slite to destroy the harbour if it seemed like it was going to be lost (most harbours, air fields and bridges in Sweden were prepared for demolition. In many cases the explosives were stored nearby).



For your scenario one could assume most of these units having been destroyed by previous actions, or failed to mobilise - however one strong reason for having an armoured brigade on Gotland was that the enemy would need tanks of his own and the preparations for shipping them over was considered much easier to detect than say an air assault operation...
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