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"Germans and Italians together-Africa? " Topic

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Comments or corrections?

Azure Gryphon29 Dec 2016 10:45 a.m. PST

My brother and I are starting to delve into WWII Africa in 6mm, planning to play GHQs Micro Squad game. It has been a long time since I've read or played much of anything regarding the African conflict (not since playing the Avalon Hill games Afrika Korps and Tobruk, many, many moons ago).

He is working on a British force and I have acquired 40 M13/40s to start and will build out from there. My question for the crowd is: were there any major battles where German and Italian forces fought in close enough proximity to be both on the table in a game of this scale (1:1 is our preference)? Looking for some places to start researching as most of my WWII knowledge is on the Eastern Front.

Basically I am wondering if I can add some Germans in with my Italians on the table realistically or whether I should be building each force independently. Thanks in advance for comments or suggestions.

Blutarski29 Dec 2016 11:38 a.m. PST

Short answer is YES. The Italian Arete armored division was pretty well regarded by Rommel and often fought in close proximity to or in company with DAK. Rommel also frequently "stiffened" Italian infantry divisions by reinforcing them with a battalion of Germans. PAK's heavy artillery corps consisted of a mix of both German and Italian guns.


Personal logo ColCampbell Supporting Member of TMP29 Dec 2016 3:46 p.m. PST

So was the Trieste Motorized Division. Often it was paired with the 90th Light Division.

Those two (Ariete and Trieste) were the best of the Italians from what I have read.

A buddy of mine and I are also expanding into 6mm Desert wars raising Germans and Commonwealth on a one stand = one platoon level.

Good luck with your endeavors.


Mark 129 Dec 2016 7:17 p.m. PST

I would propose also looking at the Tunisian campaign, not just the Western Dessert campaign.

Tunisia offers the prospects of many small unit actions, as there was a far more extensive road network, railroad network, and two mountain ranges with a solid half-a-dozen passes, and plenty of djebels (stand alone hills). Lots of places for company to battalion-sized fights. There is good historical precedence for mixing Germans and Italians, French and Americans, Americans and British, and French and British (but DIFFERENT French mixing British than the French mixing with Americans) at the tactical level.

French and Italian recon elements, in full and fascinating diversity, criss-crossed the land skirmishing away, while the the French and Italian forces also provided the majority of occupation forces. The more mechanized Americans, British and Germans tended to maneuver through / around them.

(This is admittedly a generalization. There were of course several larger French and Italian formations operating just as the German or American or British formations did. But within the American and British sectors of operations there were still French forces providing occupation garrisons and recon. So also with the Italians in the German sectors.)

(aka: Mk 1)

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