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"North Africa Urban Battles?" Topic

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619 hits since 31 Jul 2017
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Comments or corrections?

Rollo the Cat Inactive Member01 Aug 2017 9:33 a.m. PST

I would imagine that many of the urban areas were bypassed because of the nature of desert warfare, but were there any significant city fights in North Africa that would be worth gaming?

I know Tobruk was big but that seems to be fought on the outskirts of the urban area with trenches and barbed wire. I am looking for house to house fighting.


ScottWashburn Sponsoring Member of TMP01 Aug 2017 10:26 a.m. PST

I believe there was some fighting in Tunis during the last days of the campaign. Also some fighting in smaller towns and villages in Tunisia as well.

And there was some urban fighting during the Torch landings in North Africa. Americans-vs-French, of course.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP01 Aug 2017 10:38 a.m. PST

Stretch "North Africa" just a trifle. There is some interesting house to house British vs French fighting in Syria.

Andy ONeill01 Aug 2017 11:05 a.m. PST

Not a lot of houses out in the desert. A 9 foot high raise could be named and considered the most significant terrain feature in a battle.

Have you considered Italy?

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP01 Aug 2017 12:59 p.m. PST

Might find something in Tunisia--or in Morocco at the start of TORCH. But I still like the Syria fighting. Considering how many troops they had involved in the theater, I'm always a little surprised when people do books on WWII in the Middle Wast and North Africa and don't include the French Army.

Rollo the Cat Inactive Member01 Aug 2017 1:07 p.m. PST

Italy crossed my mind. I think the uniforms were the same, which I like.

Syria is not done often. I understand the French might have actually won if it hadn't been for some command blunders.

Personal logo Mserafin Supporting Member of TMP01 Aug 2017 3:23 p.m. PST

Was their any such fighting in Bardia, or did resistance collapse after the outer defenses were breached?

Rollo the Cat Inactive Member01 Aug 2017 5:22 p.m. PST

I did a quick check on Bardia and it appears the town itself surrendered before an assault was launched on it.

Personal logo miniMo Supporting Member of TMP01 Aug 2017 7:45 p.m. PST

For skirmish gaming, it doesn't get any better than Operation Agreement:

LostPict Supporting Member of TMP01 Aug 2017 7:48 p.m. PST

Operation Agreement looks the stuff. Any scenario books on it?

Retiarius903 Aug 2017 3:12 a.m. PST

wasnt Benghazi fought over several times

Andy ONeill03 Aug 2017 6:02 a.m. PST

I think Benghazi changed hands 5 times.
It's my understanding that there was hardly any fighting involved. What there was happened on the outskirts.
A quick check….
It's a fairly large city.
The timescales involved reinforce my thinking it was pretty much abandoned quickly each time rather than fought over street by street.

An odd feature of the desert campaign was what the British called the "Benghazi handicap" perhaps with rather dark humour. One side tended to break and run. There was rapid retreat on one side and advance from the enemy. The supply lines for the retreating side shortened and those of the "winner" lengthened.
Then those roles were reversed.

A number of desert infantry actions were attacks across wadis. These tend to go towards the ocean and hence across the likely axis of any advance. Often the only significant piece of terrain for miles.
These are the sort of actions that I would suggest make for terrain rich desert infantry engagements.

Even then, I would not have thought the popular "skirmish" style 28mm infantry gaming really suits desert.
Each to one's own and all that though.
Gaming ought to be all about you yourself enjoy rather than what some other geezer tells you ought to be doing.
If you want sand, flat roofed houses and shorts then go for it.

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