1940: Fall of France Scenario 21: Red Dusk
Division Marocaine #2
|France||1re Division Marocaine|
|Germany||12th Infantry Regiment|
|Germany||33rd Motorized Infantry Regiment|
|Germany||35th Panzer Regiment|
|Germany||6th Panzer Regiment|
|Overall Rating, 1 vote|
|Scenario Rank: --- of 586|
|Parent Game||Division Marocaine|
|Layout Dimensions||43 x 28 cm
17 x 11 in
|Scenario Requirements & Playability|
|Fall of France||maps + counters|
The German assault on Gembloux itself had gotten nowhere. Rebuffed by rock-solid Moroccan infantry backed by extremely accurate French artillery, the German infantry paid a heavy price. The one bright spot for them was a point between Ernage and Gembloux where they had been able to punch a hole through the railway line and overrun the hidden antitank guns there. Then word came around midday that 3rd Panzer Division had pierced the line at Perbais and Ernage, and that brought on a new German attack with air support. The French began to give way around the Lagasse farm just north of Gembloux, but then the armored counterattack that had been ordered at 11:30 finally began.
The Germans poured heavy fire into the French whose infantry became separated from their tanks. Some of the latter were disabled by German AT fire or pinned down by German tanks arriving from Ernage to the north. By 1830 the counterattack had ground to a halt, but the Germans had been stopped and ended up withdrawing behind the railway. Unfortunately, as darkness fell on the battlefield the French success at Gembloux was voided by German victory farther south.
The Division Marocaine counterset replaces the French INF with Moroccan ESC. The Moroccan Division was at the peak of its fighting prowess.
(Special note: Marocain HMG units have a Movement factor of 2.)
|AFV Rules Pertaining to this Scenario's Order of Battle|
|4 Errata Items|
The reduced direct fire value of the Heer HMG became 5-5 starting with Fall of France.
(plloyd1010 on 2015 Jul 31)
The morale and combat modifiers of German Sergeant #1614 should be "0", not "8".
(Shad on 2010 Dec 15)
The movement allowance on the counters in Airborne is misprinted. It should be "3."
(rerathbun on 2012 Jan 30)
The unit label on the counter is 25mm, but should be 20mm. No effect on play.
(plloyd1010 on 2016 Apr 01)
|Germans reeling, but victorious?|
Late in the afternoon of May 15, 1940, the fighting continued around Gembloux, Belgium. Units from the 1re Division Marocaine were engaged by elements of the 35th Panzer Regiment and 12th & 35th Schutzen Regiments. The Moroccan troops formed a strong line in north and central Gembloux with the Germans pressing on both fronts. After the slow advance earlier in the day, the Germans held the sunken railroad section, with troops positioned south along the west side of the railroad tracks and in the woods north of the city. By 1645, two German infantry platoons had broken through the south end of the line into Gembloux despite strafing from a French Am.143. After German OBA destroyed a 25mm AT group in northwest Gembloux at 1730 hours, two Panzer platoons broke through in the north and circled to the west side of the town. They were finally tracked down and eliminated by a combined R35/ tirailleur ESC group at 1830 hours. Fighting continued both north and south of the town into the evening hours with no resolution. Even though the Germans were compromised, they managed to hold some positions west of the railroad, a situation that resulted in a German victory.
This scenario is essentially a continuation of the battle fought on that same day in Scenario #18 (cf. previous AAR from that battle). It was remarkable that the Axis units from the previous AAR held almost the same ground on which they finished in that play. The red Division Marocaine ESC units were used in place of French infantry, so that this could be played as a Division Marocaine scenario. The only objective in this scenario is to not allow any undemoralized German units to remain west of the railroad by scenario end. This can be difficult since the Germans must be pushed back from their starting positons north of the town, while not allowing any advance from units east of the railroad. With panzer units that have 8 movement points, there is excellent mobility for the German armor once it has crossed the tracks. That fact coupled with the difficulty in scoring hits on armor makes for a very difficult French victory option. In fact, I would have scored the scenario higher if there had been a more realistic victory condition. In the final analysis, the Germans had the following units still west of the railroad at game end: one full strength HMG, five reduced infantry (1 good order, 2 disrupted, and 2 demoralized), one reduced engineer (disrupted), and two reduced panzer units (both disrupted). The French had lost 19 steps to 37 lost for the Germans (tanks counting double).