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The Polish-Soviet War (Democritus Only)

A staging-point for declarations of war and other major diplomatic events. [In character]
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Nowa Polonie
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The Polish-Soviet War (Democritus Only)

Postby Nowa Polonie » Tue Mar 30, 2021 6:56 pm

The Polish-Soviet War (Democritus Only)

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The quiet unease across Eastern Europe has been vindicated - on the 31st. of January, 1921, the storms of war once again rage over this weary corner of Europe. Proclaiming the causes of Belarussian and Ukrainian freedom, the Polish Republic has launched a surprise assault on its Eastern neighbour. Tens of thousands of men commit themselves to an assault on Belarus, with tens of thousands of men committed to the capture of Minsk, the cultural and economic heart of Belarus. None yet may call the final outcome of this newest addition to the chronicle of human conflict and misery, though it is clear that this great ideological crusade will decide the fate of the entire region of Eastern Europe.

Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori - Dating begins 31st. January, 1921
Last edited by Nowa Polonie on Tue Mar 30, 2021 7:01 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Orostan
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Postby Orostan » Wed Mar 31, 2021 2:48 pm

Slutsk, Belorussian SSR - February 10th 1921

The Reds had dug into their position with trenches and established several machine gun positions across their defenses. The Polish attackers, while not facing the full might of the Red Army that was being organized behind the front, would be delayed by the three major defensive lines that had been established to delay or contain them. Each line had more defenses than the last and these trenches near Slutsk were only the first.

Polish probing attacks had failed to break the line twice in the past three days, and were failing once again this morning. The "advance until significant resistance encountered" orders that the Polish army had been given weren't suitable for the coordinated offensives that it would take to overcome a series of trenches that were becoming deeper every day. Limited concentrated attacks designed to break through Soviet defenses had been observed in Belarus around the city of Minsk but absolutely none had been observed in Ukraine.

While Red Army troops exchanged fire with their Polish counterparts in the dirty fields near Slutsk, Red Army planners were working on their next moves. Great efforts had been taken to fool the Poles that resources and men were being diverted north to the Belarusian front from the Red Army's rear in Ukraine. Trains moved north less than half full of supplies or entirely empty and when they arrived would begin supplying the Belarusian front. Some units were also actually being diverted to make the deception complete. On a more subtle level units were being ordered to change their positions in small numbers, from the perspective of the individual soldiers and officers nothing more than a redeployment along their defensive line. But gradually over the next month or so the best units in Ukraine would be concentrated on a northern section of the border, just south of the Belarusian SSR.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN


Sagarmatha wrote:You have a corporatist brain. "It's more faster so it's better". Profit, profit, profit my dear Neoliberal, never forget why you exist. Profit, profit, profit.


Orostan wrote:you have posted cringe, your workers are going to unionize and kill you.

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Poland at War - Early February, 1921 #1

Postby Nowa Polonie » Thu Apr 01, 2021 11:13 am

Monastery of St. Michael Novitsky, Fanipal, 12km South-West of the outskirts of Minsk, February 5th, 1921

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A Russian corporal lay dying - the collar of his field tunic clung to his neck with cold perspiration. There had been no morphine, but some small comfort came from a gill of vodka he had been administered. It had been good, it had warmed him for a time against the cold... ''The cold..'', the thought came to him, and he swallowed dryly. To his right, another man was sitting by him, clutching his hand, waiting with him until the end. He did not know his name, but he was a sergeant of one of the other regiments. A bullet had shattered his knee, and he had been left here as one of the lame, rather than the dying. He couldn't tell which was worse. ''I think..'', the private croaked out, ''I-'', the Sergeant hushed him. Under a bushy moustache, he began to speak, in a thick Moskali accent, ''Hush now, hush now..'', he squeezed the private's hand with a new and surprising strength, ''Don't let your country down, my lad.. go on - without a word..'', he would draw his voice down to a soothing whisper, ''There's a good soldier.. just march away..''. The sergeant felt beneath his fingers the life in the private's hand disappear, and the light in his eyes fade. He would utter a benediction over the young man's body, and close his eyes, sitting by him until the end.

The monastery had long been empty - the monks who still remained lived in huts, either located nearby or on the grounds. For a time, it had been used as a granary for Minsk. Up until a day ago, the small town had had its own rail-link to Minsk, making the monastery one of more utilitarian examples of the once sacred buildings that had been put towards this 'revolutionary purpose'.

In the six nights and five days that had passed since the Polish Army had crossed the frontier, however, Fanipal had hosted at least two retreating cavalry battalions, and twice as many on foot. The last of them had 'requisitioned the last of the grain, and proceeded to dynamite the town's rail line. As the monastery emptied for a second time, each passsing group of soldiers would leave their lame and dying behind under the roof of the monastery, and since then, a skeleton crew of monks, nuns and volunteers from the town had formed, to try to give what comfort they could to those who had been left behind, many of them to die.

It was to scenes like these that Adem Janek, Captain of Sixth Company of the Polish Army's 3rd. Regiment, 2nd. Cavalry Division. As they passed down the narrow, unpaved streets, the town's monastery came into view - it wasn't hard to discern its purpose with field-dressed corpses being lain out in rows on the snow outside, black-robed monk administering the final dignities afforded to them. ''Take a section to that monastery, Sergeant.'', Janek spoke to his batman, Sergeant Radzevsky - the man was a grizzled old Galician, nicknamed 'Hutsul' by his men. He nodded, and with a few harsh commands, several troopers broke off from the cavalry, ''Remember - any Chekists and political officers to be taken to me.''. Janek would then proceed to take his men to the rail line - his troop was to capture the town and secure it in preperation for the deployment of an armoured train to assist the final capture of Minsk. He found it as the Reds had left it - wooden sleepers blown to timbers, the tracks twisted into splay of steel shapes. Janek spat a cigarette end into the snow along with a curse.

''Send dispatches to regimental command - 'Minsk-Fanipal line unsuitable for use - enemy dressing station captured - will carry out secondary orders to secure and hold the town.'. Within minutes, a pair of dispatch riders would depart down the same road they had taken into the town, while unknown to them, thirty miles to the North, on the opposite end of Minsk, their counterparts in the 6th. Cavalry had captured Zhdanovici - with its rail-line to Minsk intact. Around the city, Polish forces were forming themselves up like a noose around the city.

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Postby Orostan » Thu Apr 01, 2021 10:33 pm

Labor Armies and the Second Line - February 15th 1921

With the fall of Minsk and the destruction of the majority of its rail infrastructure, the Red Army was put in a bad supply position. In order to save more of their forces, the decision was made to withdraw to Polatsk and Barysaw but to continue to hold Slutsk for a while longer while preparations were made in the forests and territory between Slutsk and Babruysk to defend routes further into Belarus and make the forested areas virtually unconquerable, and the railroads ready to be destroyed at a moment's notice. At this point radios shipped in from Germany were being distributed among Red Army units, sometimes to multiple units. Units that were in the rear line working to construct defenses or being put to work building supply railroads with what little steel could be gathered up would not need radios, and when they were moved to the front to replace units that needed time to recover they could receive a radio from the units that they were replacing. New communications codes were also being distributed with new radios to the division level to relay orders in a more secure way.

The Red Army's air force began running regular reconnaissance missions over occupied territory in a more organized way, which allowed for a raid with bombers acquired from the Germans against a railroad depot in Minsk that had evaded destruction on the 14th in the very early morning. The inaccuracy of bombs dropped from high altitude meant that even though the railroad depot was destroyed damage to Minsk's industrial district also occurred. The next day late at night another bomb raid would take place against a series of Polish positions south of Minsk with one bomber disabled on landing after returning. The German fighter aircraft were also being put to use, their chief job being hunting enemy scout aircraft and observation balloons along with the rest of the Red air force.

Behind the front, the Cheka was busy attending to their own duties. Quietly in the early morning or late night over the course of a few days towns near the front began cleaned out of suspected collaborationists. The enemy policy of executing all captured political officers was certainly on the average Chekist's mind while they hunted for Polish spies. That order was being publicized to foreign media especially in the Americas and Western Europe as much as possible, with a note delivered to the Mongolians to raise the issue of Polish war crimes and aggression at the next "League of Peace" meeting.

In Ukraine, the usual Cheka activities were going on and Red Army units continued to slowly redeploy north. As in Belarus, the Red Army was using its units not engaged in active combat to repair infrastructure and build fortifications. Scout aircraft and spies had made it clear the Poles had significant forces at least equal to the Red Army's on their border with Ukraine and if they would attack Ukraine after Belarus was an open question. Partially to protect Ukraine, the city of Mazyr in Belarus was being fortified and prepared with defenses on both its north and south.

Somewhere South of Minsk

The Polish scout group's camp is not very large, and only occupies about a quarter of a large clearing in the middle of the forest. As the sun sets, soldiers cluster around the fires in the middle of the camp cooking food and preparing for the next day's work. A few men stood guard at the edge of the camp leaning against trees or otherwise distracting themselves with something. None of them except for a young man in an ill-fitting uniform who kept on looking into the dark forest expected anything to happen.

That young man was the first to hear a sudden woosh and get an arrow lodged in his chest. He grabbed at it for a moment, shocked, and then fell to the snow with only a little sound. A few of the other soldiers began rushing over to see what had happened, but then more arrows came out of the forest. A third of them missed, but the other two thirds each found a man to hit. The disturbance had at this point spread throughout the camp and as Polish soldiers picked up their guns and their officers shouted orders horses began to run out of one of the forest paths and into the clearing as groups of men poured in from the other sides. The silence of the bows they were using made it unclear which direction the Poles were being attacked from, and at this point the Poles could hear the enemy speaking in some unfamiliar language.

A particularly loud shout in that language and the enemy began shooting their real guns and rushing into the camp. A Polish officer was killed with a sword by a man screaming in Mongolian, and the fortunes of the other Polish soldiers weren't set to be much better when the Mongolians began firing at the Poles smart enough to escape into the forest with machine guns.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN


Sagarmatha wrote:You have a corporatist brain. "It's more faster so it's better". Profit, profit, profit my dear Neoliberal, never forget why you exist. Profit, profit, profit.


Orostan wrote:you have posted cringe, your workers are going to unionize and kill you.

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Poland at War - February, 1921 #2

Postby Nowa Polonie » Sat Apr 03, 2021 12:55 pm

Polish Forces Capture Polotsk - Spring Thaws Slow Advance, February 26th, 1921

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Pictured 1912, the town of Polotsk is a centre of Belarus' cultural and intellectual heritage, and was identified in Polish planning documents as a significant secondary objective of initial phases of their invasion. While Polish troops have succeeded, they have done so later than anticipated by army planners, and the onset of the Spring thawing has begun to place an obstacle far more pervasive than any effort made by the Soviets - mud.

Polish troops succeeded on the morning of February 26th in securing the town of Polotsk, and establishing a minor bridgehead across the Daugava. Fighting in the town began on the 24th, when forward elements of Polish cavalry faced skirmishes on the approaches towards the town. Soviet efforts were hampered by the presence of disorganised units, who had attempted to regroup at the town. While Polish troops failed to capture the town before this could be fully exploited to capture or destroy these enemy units before they could reorganize or retreat further, it delayed Soviet efforts to destroy many bridges in the area, allowing Polish troops to capture many intact after they had been used by routing enemy troops.

Fighting continued into the night of the 24th, and by the morning of the 25th, the Polish flag was visible over the Cathedral of St. Sophia, overlooking the South-Westernmost portion of the town. Soviet forces who did remain, however, fought tenaciously, and dispatches describe fighting occurring house-to-house. ''I am of the opinion-'', a letter addressed to the staff command of the 6th. Cavalry Division, who took part in the fighting, ''- That the Russian soldier, educated in and motivated by, ideology, will demonstrate throughout this war an ability to achieve remarkable feats - if not through superiority of arms, then through a sheer and overwhelming fighting spirit.''. While many small-scale desertions, and in some cases outright defections, have taken place, any rumours of mass mutinies in the Red Army have yet to be substantiated. However, with Polish troops now in Polotsk, Minsk, and approaching Slutsk, Polish intelligence officers have expressed optimism that the legitimacy of the Polish war effort in the eyes of the Belarussian people will begin to be recognized, and while the Belarussian government-in-exile has not yet officially re-entered Minsk, reports have confirmed the presence of Polish-aligned Belarussian volunteers in the capital.

However, while many of the initial first-stage goals of the Polish Army's plans in the Belarussian theatre have met with success, it has also seen the emergence of two problems - while one will inevitably get worse before it gets better, failure to address both would be militarily catastrophic. On the former: the mud. As February approaches March, in many areas snows have begun to melt, joined by Spring rains, to create what have been described in some particularly egregious cases, as., ''Canals of mud - swallowing wheels, horses and then cart.'', while apocryphal stories of soldiers and pack-animals quite literally 'drowning in mud' are hyperbolic, they draw from the truth in the extremity of the conditions. While the Polish Army had, at several points, throughout its initial invasion, succeeded in limited deployments of its armoured forces to break up particularly pernicious pockets of Soviet resistance, they are now beyond any use, and are being withdrawn from the front. This has only been exacerbated by the wrecking of Minsk's rail infrastructure, and while Polish efforts began immediately to begin clearing and restoring the ruined lines, it is estimated that it will take until the onset of Summer before they become functional in any significant military capacity. As a consequence, much of the territory spanning the initial Polish-Soviet frontier, and the current line of advance, is becoming increasingly inaccessible, and while many Polish units have already endured shortages in supplies, only now are some beginning to enter combat under similar degrees of supply as their Soviet adversaries.

The second major issue has come in the form of the Red Army itself - while Polish planners have correctly identified that many of units of the Soviet Red Army are of marginal fighting capacity, they failed to identify the existence of a significant contingent of the Red Army who possesses ''Soldierly qualities; discipline, fighting spirit, ingenuity..''. Encounters with Soviet troops who have successfully engaged, and outright repelled, sometimes for days, Polish efforts to advance, have begun to create at Polish Staff Head Quarters a growing degree of wariness and respect for the capabilities of the Red Army. This has only been reinforced by growing reports of increasingly organized flights by Soviet aircraft.

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Postby Orostan » Sat Apr 03, 2021 2:14 pm

Slutsk Under Attack, Red Army in place at next line of defense - February 30th 1921

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Red Army troops photographed south of Slutsk.

In the early night after Polish troops took the city of Polotsk, the Red Army launched a raid with fifteen bombers on rail infrastructure in Polatsk. At the same time, two Red Army zeppelins delivered from Germany struck bridges on the Daugava river. Inaccurate bombs and navigational errors meant that only half of the zeppelins targets were destroyed or damaged enough to be unusable. The rail yard in Polatsk however was a clear target even at night, and was damaged enough though one of the locomotive servicing sheds survived with several usable or almost usable locomotives inside. No bombers were lost on the raid, though two were heavily damaged by a collision on the way to the target and were forced to jettison their bombs and turn back only a short while after taking off.

Artillery was used to cover the Red Army's retreat from the area around Polotsk, and new bases were established to contain the Poles. The Red Army has also established a supply and aviation center at Viciebsk to support new units arriving at the front line and those already fighting. With the Red Army retreating to prepared defensive positions in the north and Slutsk looking to be the next Polish objective, several delaying counter-attacks have been approved.

South of Slutsk a Red Army counter-attack from the direction of Lyuban against Polish-occupied Salihorsk was able to gain limited ground and force the poles to divert additional resources to the area. The muddy conditions made it impossible to hold the gained ground and the Red Army retreated before the Poles could force them to leave. A similar attack also took place along the Pripyat river. The majority of the fighting was concentrated along a railway in the area where a Red Army armored train was supporting infantry while Red Army artillery used information provided by aircraft to prevent the Poles from using their own artillery against the train. The Red Army retreated a short while after the Poles were able to destroy the railroad in front of the train with explosives and seriously damage one of its artillery cars as well as damage a Red river gunboat that was supporting the attack. Another Red Army attack failed to gain any ground at all near the village of Marokharava and their retreat was covered by artillery.

Red aircraft including a squadron of German aircraft have been especially active in denying the enemy air reconnaissance and providing the Red Army information on Polish positions in the north and south of Slutsk. More organized Red Army artillery barrages have been directed at Polish positions and especially at enemy artillery. A common tactic is to have half of the artillery fire on the enemy's artillery while the rest focuses on supporting the infantry during a counter-attack. When no such attack is occurring, the objective is to force the enemy artillery to be moved away from the front and become useless or to destroy them while denying the enemy artillery the same opportunities with air cover.

In Ukraine the Red Army continues its strategy of denying the enemy air reconnaissance with its own aircraft. Six bombers also made a raid against the city of Lublin's rail infrastructure on the 25th at night after a spot where anti-aircraft guns could be struck with artillery and prevented from firing was discovered. Two bombers were lost to anti-aircraft guns the Red Army was unaware of near the town of Zamosc, but using an alternate route the bombers were able to make it back to Soviet Ukraine after attacking a rail yard in Lubin. No very serious damage was done, but the rail yard is believed to be rendered inoperable for a few days at least.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN


Sagarmatha wrote:You have a corporatist brain. "It's more faster so it's better". Profit, profit, profit my dear Neoliberal, never forget why you exist. Profit, profit, profit.


Orostan wrote:you have posted cringe, your workers are going to unionize and kill you.

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Poland at War - Early March, 1921 #3

Postby Nowa Polonie » Sun Apr 04, 2021 5:47 pm

Polish Army engages at Slutsk - Polish Escalate Air War, March 2nd, 1921

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Photographed near Pinsk, a D.VIII fighter - the Polish Air Forces are beginning to actively contest Soviet efforts to defend their airspace. Possessing greater access to modern foreign designs, parts and expertise, and having parity with their Soviet counterparts for numbers of aircraft, they have had a clear advantage in the occassional engagements that take place over the frontier.

As the fighting in Belarus continues, and the initial force of Poland's offensive slows to a halt, the appearance of modern German fighters in Soviet service, and bombing raids over major Polish cities, has encouraged a near-total deployment of the Polish Air Force to the Eastern theatres of the war. Formed late into Poland's pre-statehood struggles for independence, the Polish Air Force boasts an impressive number of modern aircraft, relative to the size and wealth of Poland itself, either begged, borrowed or stolen from her Entente allies and the vanquished members of the Central Powers.

While Polish planners had initially been loath to commit to the deployment of Air Forces, citing needs to conserve fuel for use by the Army, and because of mobile conditions at the frontline complicating the planning of sorties. As the front has begun to stablise however, and it becomes apparent that many Soviet positions will become far more permanent, and that the Soviets have already seized early initiative in the air campaign. This was confirmed when Soviet bombers successfully launched a raid on Lublin in late February, and while damage was relatively insignificant, it has fanned demands in the halls of High Command to begin a general deployment of Poland's full inventory of aircraft. News from Modlin Fortress, the Head Quarters of the High Command of the Polish Army, indicates that the 'Modlin Gang' (the intelligence staff responsible for managing the Army's network of intelligence), has been expanded to include a new staff of planners, responsible for communicating information to and advising Air Force commanders. Through her channels of communication with pro-Polish Belarussian and Ukrainian elements in the Soviet Union, they have begun a campaign to begin identifying the location, quantity and other critical military information concerning aircraft in operation with Soviet forces.

This manifested with a raid, launched by 6. Bomber Squadron, made up of French-made Breguet 14's, over Vitebsk, where they launched a retaliatory night-time raid against Soviet Aircraft stationed there, succeeding in damaging and disabling several aircraft on the ground. The raid was not without losses, and the squadron lost a third of its aircraft in the effort, incurring several losses to ground fire during the raid, and suffering a further loss on the return flight, when the plane of Lt. Taduski suffered a critical engine failure, bringing his bird down for a soft-crash landing, thankfully behind friendly lines.

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This comes in tandem with Polish efforts to capture the town of Slutsk, which has been identified as the last major target of military significance that can potentially be captured by the Polish Army before it loses organised offensive capabilities in the face of issues of supply at the front as a consequence of the mud season. Polish troops struggle against mud constantly, suffering through the worst of the conditions to try to capture the town, which remains just beyond reach, being only a half-dozen miles from the frontlines.

The primary impediment to the advance, besides the mud, has come in the form of Soviet gunners, who have been fierce in providing support for ground forces, oftentimes preventing Polish forces from advancing immediately against retreating Soviet troops. Officers of the artillery have noticed a flaw, however, in the doctrine of their Soviet counterparts; Soviet gunners, while deploying covering fire for ground forces, often attempt to suppress Polish guns, often putting half of their own to just such a purpose. While the Soviets possess a greater number of guns, it is not overwhelming, and a greater number of them are of greater obsolensence relative to their Polish counterparts. As a consequence, in many engagements where this tactic has been employed, Soviet gunners have attempted counter-battery, only to attract the full attention of Polish gunners, who retaliate with their full complement of guns - while they may struggle to outshoot a full battery of Soviet guns, the division of Soviet firepower has allowed many Polish batteries to disable many Soviet batteries, before providing now overwhelming local fire support. This counter to Soviet artillery doctrine is not universally applicable, however, any many Polish units have continue to find themselves momentarily immobilized in their advance by particularly tenacious Soviet barrages.

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Postby Orostan » Sun Apr 04, 2021 9:52 pm

Red Army launches large counter attacks, Air war evens out - March 5th 1921

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Following the deployment of a large number of Polish aircraft on the front especially near Slutsk the Red Army has changed its air and artillery tactics. With the Poles now able to use scout aircraft regularly Red Army artillery has been forced to change its tactics and dedicate more resources to firing on enemy artillery rather than firing at infantry. The new procedure is to use the majority of the artillery to match and slightly outgun the Polish artillery while The Red Army has on several occasions used artillery to destroy or otherwise prevent Polish flak positions from firing while aircraft attack enemy artillery. This strategy while effective on several occasions resulted in the loss of three Sikorsky S-16 fighters and two bombers with another bomber heavily damaged when a Soviet bombing raid against artillery was intercepted by Polish fighters. Polish raids on Soviet airfields have been responded to with larger raids with Soviet bombers against Polish airfields, with one bomber being heavily damaged but managing to return after a raid on a Polish airbase south of Minsk. A large bombing raid with 18 bombers participating also took place against Polish artillery positions outside of Slutsk, with ground fire Soviet artillery had failed to keep down damaging two Soviet bombers and forcing a third to land in one of Slutsk's wider streets on the east side of the city.

The Red Army has dedicated its German D. VIII fighters to intercepting Polish bombers and attacking slower and less modern fighters that form the majority of Poland (and the USSR's) aircraft stocks. Standard procedure when encountering the Polish D. VIII squadron is to not risk an engagement unless the high performance fighters can be intercepted with at least one and a half times as much fighters, or only engage if Soviet fighters have superior altitude and are able to escape the higher performance Polish aircraft after attacking. Several times Soviet D. VIIIs have fought Polis D. VIIIs with the results being inconclusive, with both sides taking damage but not losing any aircraft. However because of regular trade with Germany the Soviets will have access to more parts and potentially more aircraft. According to rumors floating around in Ukraine and Belarus the Red Army has been investigating ways to domestically produce certain components of the D. VIII in the USSR and possibly assemble the planes out of parts imported from Germany.

On the ground, the Red Army has launched two counter-offensives aimed at recovering some lost ground and forcing the Poles to divert resources away from Slutsk. With the support of armored trains and a bombing raid on Polish positions the night before, Red Army troops attacked Polish defenses outside Minsk from the direction of the fortified city of Barysaw. A counter attack was also mounted with similar armored train support from the other direction of Minsk from Babruysk. Due to increased Polish air cover and more accurate Polish artillery bombardments the Red Army has actually been forced to withdraw from certain parts of Slutsk over the Sluch river including areas just south of the rail yards, which have already had all but their least valuable rolling stock and locomotives evacuated. This has not stopped another counter-attack near Slutsk aimed at liberating Salihorsk with cavalry support. The muddy conditions make everything difficult, but the attacks are expected to regain some ground at least before the ground fully thaws and fighting becomes even more difficult.


IVAN AND SERGEI'S BIZARRE ADVENTURE PART 3: SOCIALIST CRUSADERS

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A Red Army armored train on a rail siding near Slutsk

The armored train was moving north towards Soviet controlled Slutsk in the middle of the day. In the distance over the noise of the steam locomotive near the front of the train there was the drone of aircraft engines and occasional gunfire. A few of the men with their heads outside of the hatches on top of some of the machine gun cars were betting on how many Polish aircraft Pravda would report shot down tomorrow. The train was returning from supporting a counter attack near Salihorsk and between there and Slutsk the atmosphere was relaxed. Perhaps a little more relaxed than it should be when traveling behind enemy lines.

Through the thick forest on a parallel rail line a few of the scouts noticed another train. It was identifiable as an armored train, but no other armored trains were supposed to be active in the area.

Over an artillery gun in one of the cars, Ivan's friend Sergei pointed the train out to him.

"Ivan, do you see that?"

Ivan looked up from his issue of Pravda, which he could not read because he was illiterate but had anyways. He put his eye to a view port and stared through it for a moment.

"Yes, what about it? It's probably one of ours."

Sergei put his face to the port on his side of the artillery gun again.

"But what if it's not?" he said, face buried in the steel wall of the artillery turret.

"I guess we'd have to shoot at them then."

Then as if by command the dense tree cover separating the two tracks from each other dropped off suddenly. On top the train the Poles and Soviet train crews who were both outside the armored cars of their trains stared at each other for a moment. Neither moved or fired their machine guns, for fear of the other doing so as well. Then a burst of machine gun fire over the heads of the Russians shocked everyone into action. Men scrambled into their positions and the artillery guns on the Polish train began to turn, quickly mirrored by the same action on the Russian train.

The rotation gears in Ivan and Sergei's turret were going as fast as the two could crank them while both trains exchanged machine gun fire. The Poles managed to turn their guns to face their enemy quicker than the Soviets could and an artillery shell struck the ground beside the Red Army train while another went over the top of it.

Ivan and Sergei got their gun in position a moment later and fired their own artillery shell that whizzed just over the head of a Pole operating a machine gun on top of his train. Then the trains began striking each other with shells. Neither of them was carrying armor piercing rounds of any type, but the explosive shells made a tremendously loud sound when they exploded against a train's armor and forced the machine gun men on both sides to retreat inside their trains.

A Polish round throwing up splinters and boards of wood from a Russian boxcar at the front of the Red Army train was followed by a Red shell exploding against the Polish locomotive, nearly tipping it over while commanders on both sides yelled orders to their men. The Reds chose to focus on disabling the Polish artillery wagons while the Poles went for the lighter Red machine gun cars which they hoped to tip over.

For nearly ten minutes the armored trains exchanged fire in what was perhaps the most unique battle of the war. Occasionally a shell struck an expendable wood car at the front or rear of one of the trains, but for the most part neither was doing more than scratching the other's paint. No matter how many expletives Ivan shouted at the shells he was loading they would not penetrate the Pole's armor and the Polish shells could not penetrate theirs. For a moment it looked like one of the trains would finally disable the other or set fire to the other's ammunition stocks but that never happened.

Finally the tracks diverged as the two trains headed in different directions, throwing shells at each other until The Polish train once again disappeared into a patch of forest.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN


Sagarmatha wrote:You have a corporatist brain. "It's more faster so it's better". Profit, profit, profit my dear Neoliberal, never forget why you exist. Profit, profit, profit.


Orostan wrote:you have posted cringe, your workers are going to unionize and kill you.

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Poland at War - Early March, 1921 #4

Postby Nowa Polonie » Mon Apr 05, 2021 12:47 am

Fight for the Lines, Slutsk, Belarus, March 6th, 1921


The section of rail line running along Red Star Prospekt had exchanged hands three times that day - initially, it had been in the hands of a platoon of Soviet troops. An attack shortly after dawn that morning by a company of Polish troops, supported with mortars, dislodged the Soviets, who after losing six men, withdrew in short order. The Polish company advanced, passing over the lines until an hour later, when having advanced beyond the cobbled streets of the town, became bogged down in mud, coming under attack by a roving band of Red cavaliers. Retreating back through the town, the Poles attempted to form a defensive line along the rails as the Soviets mounted a counter-attack by noon. Despite a disciplined defense, Polish troops were eventually over-run, and the entirety of that part of the town was retaken by the Soviets.

Operating from a forward command post in Selische, several miles outside of the town, General Wladyslaw Sikorski, the overall acting commander of the Polish units taking part in the growing Battle of Slutsk, committed armored cars under his command to break up the small counter-attack in that part of the town before it grew to something bigger. Driving down roads slick with the rain with tires caked with mud, the cars rolled down the roads towards Red Star Prospekt, platoons of shock infantry flanking them as they crept under the doorways of the street, keeping their eyes trained cautiously about the windows above. A shout in Russian from a nearby alley, and a Russian field-gun, wheeled with malicious intent down the narrow alleyway, lets off a shell almost point-blank. The shell slams against the wall of a nearby building, and a great fireball licks up the wall - two men are laid low by shrapnel immediately, a third falls to the ground screaming, the flesh from the left side of his face bubbling from the sudden heat. Rifles begin to crack from windows above, and from the alleys and streets around. The Russian field-gun prepares a second shot, preparing to remove the threat of the armoured car, but its fate was sealed when it failed to destroy the armoured car outright with its initial shot - the car's machinegun begins to pelt the gunshield, and the gun's crewmen huddle behind for cover. A shout from the street ahead rings out, and over their heads a stick-grenade, thrown with vindictive intent by Polish hands, lands a few feet away, before exploding.

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Vicious fighting continued as soldiers moved house-to-house. Many were empty, their occupants fleeing to the countryside around the town to avoid the fighting, in some however, many families were forced to endure the battle outside moving into their own homes - while direct examples of violence against civilians were few and far between, many were subjected to small acts of petty theft, threats of violence, and vandalisation of their property as troops often smashed glass to fire out of windows. If the privations of war were not enough, these further humiliations are only far too familiar to many in Eastern Europe after seven years of near perpetual war. That day though, by evening, Polish troops were once again in complete control of Red Star Prospekt, and by nightfall had successfully reinforced the area and established lines overlooking the outskirts of that part of the town.

The fighting throughout the rest of the town continues, with fighting around the centre of the town being particularly frantic, as it sits at a four-way junction in roads around the area. As nearby units pour into the area, and control of these roads changes hands, the town center has been disorganized, close-quarters fighting, and the damage to the buildings in this part of the town is particularly extensive - this has only lent itself to the intensity of the fighting there, as soldiers dig in and fight over the rubble and ruins.

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Orostan
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Postby Orostan » Mon Apr 05, 2021 4:02 pm

Muddy conditions worsen, Red Army makes limited gains - March 10th

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A destroyed locomotive in Slutsk's rail yard, which is now under Polish control.

Constant counter-attacks along railways by the Red Army have made limited gains south of Slutsk and near Minsk, however no important breakthrough has been achieved. The Polish advance along much of the front has been stopped by the counter-attacks and even turned back south of Slutsk near Salihorsk where a counter-offensive down the rail line to the town from Slutsk was able to gain ground due to the support of three armored trains in large part. The Red Army has increasingly been using armored trains to provide mobile artillery support to counter-offensives and as armored units along rail lines. In Slutsk the Red Army has held its positions in the east side of the town and still controls much of the western town over the Sluch river. A Red Army attack was able to remove the Polish from the town center on the west side of the river before a Polish-counter attack forced the Soviets to retreat again, and many parts of the Slutsk over the Sluch river are still frequently changing hands even though the Poles have gained an advantage and the Red Army has retreated from many of its positions there. Further counter-attacks to the north or south of Slutsk that are not on rail lines have been made impossible due to the "sea of mud" that seems to have flooded most of Belarus.

The deployment of Polish armored cars has led to the Red Army responding by deploying its own armored cars into the streets of Slutsk as well as establishing fortified mountain gun positions in many parts of the city designed to destroy groups of infantry or armored cars. No direct fight between Soviet armored cars and their Polish counterparts has occurred yet.

The Red Army has continued to use artillery, and now more mobile armored trains, to destroy or disrupt enemy anti-aircraft positions to allow bombers to pass through the front line. A recent night bombing raid targeted rail infrastructure in the city of Baranovichi and involved sixteen bombers flying near their maximum altitude. Due to ground fire three bombers suffered damage that forced them to land at an alternate airfield while a fourth crashed during landing due to damage sustained during the raid.

Another bombing raid covered using similar artillery tactics involved twenty bombers who targeted the rail yard in the town of Luninents on the 9th , an important stop for supplies heading to Polish troops in the south of Belarus. Two bombers were damaged during the raid due to interception by Polish D. VIII fighters, but their altitude and the night conditions meant that the Poles were unable to bring any bombers down. Polish raids against Soviet airfields have forced the Red Army to base bombers out of fields farther behind friendly lines, but new fighters arriving from Germany had allowed the Soviets to form an additional squadron of D. VIII fighters and begin working on a third. The Soviets have also been able to replenish most of their bomber losses with German imports and begin work on several new bomber squadrons. With the Red Army more confident in the sky Polish scout aircraft and bombing raids are being intercepted more frequently and with more aircraft. Red Army D. VIII fighters have made it their mission to follow the Polish D. VIIIs around the front and to continue attacking less modern Polish aircraft. With the Soviets able to reliably increase their numbers of high performance German fighters and bombers it is expected that the Soviets will eventually win the air war through attrition if they can't deal a crippling blow to the Polish air arm.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN


Sagarmatha wrote:You have a corporatist brain. "It's more faster so it's better". Profit, profit, profit my dear Neoliberal, never forget why you exist. Profit, profit, profit.


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Poland at War - March, 1921 #5

Postby Nowa Polonie » Tue Apr 06, 2021 10:05 pm

Poland deploys Podhale Rifles Regiment to Slutsk - Commences Final Push for the Town, March 14th, 1921

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Traditionally trained in mountain warfare, the Podhale Rifles, from the Podlasie region of Poland, are regarded as one of the finest units in the Polish Army, for both their high morale and their fighting spirit. Like the Chasseur, the Alpenjager and the Gebirgsjager, the Rifles of Podlasie traditionally wear the edelweiss as a motif - and like their counterparts across Europe, they embody the standards of the mountain soldiers who wear the edelweiss. Armed primarily with lighter carbines, light machine-guns, light mountain guns, and trained in infiltration and mission-type tactics, they make up some the finest troops in the entire Polish Army.

Bombardment, barrage, curtain-fire, mines, gas, tanks, machine-guns, hand-grenades - all words, but within those words are contained the horrors of the world.

In the early morning of March 14th, Soviet positions that remained on the Western bank of the Slutsk came under a series of surprise assaults. One platoon, which had held a schoolhouse against Polish assault for four days, found itself greeted not with shooting as was routine for a Polish attack - instead, in the darkest hours of the night, just before dawn, they were at first subjected to a barrage of grenades. With the chaos and confusion of presenting an opportunity, the Polish stormtroopers quickly closed distance, and within a few minutes, and a great deal of shooting, they emerged bloodied from the schoolhouse. Their officer blows a whistle, and from the darkened alleyways, regular troops of the Polish Army emerge to hold the newly taken strongpoint. The stormtroopers hand away their prize and take a brief respite from their duties that night to enjoy a smoke, while a few enjoy the contents of hip flasks. Several have placed wagers on which member of their platoon shall dispatch the most 'Reds', and some begin to display the grim tokens they use to substantiate their claims - the red stars, cut from the caps of slain Bolsheviks.

It is with troops like these, and with tactics like these, that the Polish Army has commenced a final effort to capture the town of Slutsk - General Sikorski has begun a rapid push to begin clearing many pockets of Soviet resistance spread throughout the town, in preparation to finally storm Soviet positions in the East of the town. It is clear that the town cannot be taken without cost. With fresh reserves slowly trickling in, and the elite Podhale Rifle Brigade now at his disposal, he believes that a concentrated series of assaults will be enough to to finally seize control of the town. Sikorski has remarked to subordinates his belief that this 'shock therapy' will see high casualties for its duration, but that he is of the opinion that it will ultimately be less costly, in time, men and supplies, than a drawn out battle for the town.

General Haller, Poland's Commander in the East, authorized the movement of 40,000 additional men from the strategic reserves of the Pinsk and Brest Military Regions to the Belarus Theatre, to both reinforce and replenish troops in the region. At a press meeting held in Lwow, General Haller relayed to the public his belief that Polish forces in the field were 'on the path to victory', and that early victories were an indicator of things to come. The news was received well throughout the country - recent raids by Soviet bombers came as a shock to many in Poland, however, an initial sense of panic has slowly turned to uneasy resolve, as the public become more aware of the shortcomings of the Soviet bombers. Many within the targeted cities have taken up the macabre hobbie of recovering bomb fragments, and parts from downed aircraft. An air-raid launched over Grodno turned to spectacle when a fortunate Polish gunner struck a bomber's fuel tank directly, and onlookers at once stopped seeking shelter to watch as the gigantic aircraft burned through the night sky like a comet.

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Postby Orostan » Wed Apr 07, 2021 6:35 pm

Red Army withdraws from Slutsk, Red partisan activity increases - March 16th, 1921

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Red Army cavalry in the outskirts of Slutsk.

The Red Army over the course of the 15th and 16th began an organized withdrawal from Slutsk while artillery shelled Polish positions in the town incessantly for those two days to cover the Red Army as it moved back to prepared defensive positions in the outskirts of the town. A small uprising in response to the Cheka cleaning out several outlying villages around Slutsk ultimately sped up the decision to withdraw from the ruined town of Slutsk. Though it started out as locals rioting the Cheka believes Polish agents were able to distribute arms and ammunition to the rioters and organize them. Following a series of isolated armed riots that were put down surrounding Slutsk a single larger revolt numbing 5,000 people took hold behind Soviet positions on the east side of the Sluch river on the early 15th. An artillery bombardment of the Polish positions was started at once to stop the Poles from exploiting the disruption, and the Red Army began withdrawing shortly after. It is unknown how many rebels escaped to Polish positions on the other side of the Sluch river, but a significant portion of the rebels likely survived.

In the air Soviet bombers struck the rail yards of Baranovichi and Brest again with fifteen bombers each on the nights of the 15th and 16th, losing three bombers over Baranovichi and one over Brest due to a combination of ground fire and engine troubles. The third squadron of Soviet D. VIII fighters has also become operational and has begun interception work against Polish scout aircraft and bombing raids. With more aircraft in the air more losses are being taken and the political instability in Germany has made sourcing new parts more difficult. The first factories in the Russian SFSR meant to fix this problem have begun operation and are assembling new aircraft with the help of foreign (mostly German) experts. The USSR is not capable of producing many components of the engines for fighter or bomber aircraft yet, but it can produce fuselage and wing components independently. Production has only started in small numbers but the first almost all Soviet built D. VIII fighters have already flown and passed inspection. Quality control will be an issue as production expands which is why the USSR has begun to hire more foreign experts from Germany to oversee the training of new aviation industry workers and the expansion of production.

Behind enemy lines Soviet partisans have become more active in the areas near Polatsk, Slutsk, and Minsk. What few orders have reached them from Moscow direct them towards attacking enemy supply trains and especially destroying locomotives. Even a few well placed rifle shots can disable a locomotive or otherwise necessitate expensive and time consuming repairs. Smaller scale and more isolated Ukrainian or Belarusian nationalist attacks have occurred behind the Red Army's front, though the Cheka's preemptive clearing out of towns and cities and a general attitude of support for the Soviet government has gone a long way towards making such actions extremely dangerous for the enemy and the Cheka particularly good at hunting nationalists in both SSRs. Even so, patrols along many rail lines near the front have been doubled and the Cheka has begun to offer rewards for reports that lead to the arrest of nationalists in both SSRs.

A minor series of counter-offensives also took place on the 15th, but mud and bad weather limited progress and resulted in little progress towards Minsk and only allowed part of the railway connecting Minsk and Polatsk to be taken for a short time before the Red Army was forced to withdraw and destroy that section of the line with explosives.

The logistic situation for the Red Army has been very gradually improving even though the mud makes it difficult for horse drawn carts to make it over dirt roads to certain parts of the front. The number of locomotives available for use in Belarus and Ukraine has been increasing since factories were restarted and efforts began to improve the Soviet rail situation a year ago. Red Army units recovering from combat or simply in the rear lines have also repaired some sections of rail line damaged during the civil war. The domestic food situation has worsened slightly however. There is no danger of starvation in the Ukrainian or Belarusian SSRs, but there have been difficulties in parts of the Russian SFSR where infrastructure was particularly badly damaged during the civil war. In response grain requisitions have been reduced in the affected area which comprises much of the lower Volga river area and the Cheka has begun a campaign in the Russian SFSR against grain speculators and hoarders. Outside the affected area in the Russian SFSR greater emphasis on providing food for the war effort and cities has been placed in certain regions of the Belarusian and especially Ukrainian SSR as well as the productive regions of the Russian SFSR. Unrest in the Russian SFSR so far has been limited as famine conditions have not manifested in the lower Volga region and most of the food difficulties are blamed on the invading Poles by local leaders.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN


Sagarmatha wrote:You have a corporatist brain. "It's more faster so it's better". Profit, profit, profit my dear Neoliberal, never forget why you exist. Profit, profit, profit.


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Poland at War - March, 1921 #6

Postby Nowa Polonie » Thu Apr 08, 2021 8:37 am

Slutsk, Belarussia, March 18th., 1921

Cpt. Janusz Lewandowska Nowak found his men crowded around the regimental quartermaster and his 'goulash cannon' (it was said that the mobile kitchens used by the army bore a resemblance to the breach-blocks of heavy guns, though Janusz never saw the resemblance himself, though the expression 'felt right', and so he often used it in a soldierly way). The quartermaster, Lt. Tadeusz, was a mousey man, gun-shy (the slightest shelling was liable to turn the 'mobile' kitchen into a pillbox, and food would often reach the men cold a a result of it being too far from the frontlines) - these flaws in themselves did not ingratiate him with most of the company, but he was a true 'army clerk', and particularly tight-fisted when it came to the distribution of rations, unmoved by threats or bribery. The smell of food in the air had enticed Janusz away from under the boughs of an oak tree, where he had been writing in his diary, and seeking support and something solid to rest on from the great roots of the old oak, which had thankfully been spared shelling - though here and there great tears and gouges marred the ancient bark of the tree, and small spatters and straggles of shrapnel often remained in these perforations.

A dispute had arisen - they often did where Taduesz was concerned, however, in this particular instance, it had arisen between Tadeusz and all of the men, all at once. It was a comical scene, but one Janusz inserted himself into to resolve.

Their company had taken a drubbing in the fighting for the town - they had marched in with one-hundred and seventeen men on March 8th. Janusz had marched in as one of the company's two lieutenants, under Captain Danilovski - both of his fellow officers had died in the fighting. His fellow officer, a young whippet of a man, Josif Korwin, had his jaw ripped off with a shell fragment, and 'walked away from the stretcher party carrying him to the dressing station. Their captain, Danilovski, had been hit in the stomach by a bullet on the 15th., which had been the last day of any real fighting before the Reds had finally broken out of the town under bombardment - he hadn't died all at once, and several times Janusz had received orders from him that day, propped against a piano in the house that had acted, with a pistol in one hand, and the other resting over his wound. When the Russians had begun their shelling to cover their withdrawal, Janusz had attempted to retrieve his Captain, only to find a shell had found the house first. He consoled himself with the thought that it had been most likely that the old badger had finally succumbed, rather than being buried by a shell - though he wouldn't be the first, or the last to suffer that fate. They had marched in a company of one hundred and seventeen, with a captain and two lieutenants. They had marched out with sixty-seven enlisted men, and one officer (Janusz himself), who had since been raised to acting Captain of his company (the 3rd. Company of the 118th. Infantry Regiment, 10th Infantry Division).

Tadeusz, ever gun-shy, had spent most of the final days of the battle in the rear, and as a result, was unaware of the drubbing the company had taken in the fighting. Naturally he had drawn rations for a company of nearly one-hundred and twenty men - instead he was faced with closer to seventy. The arguments that had broken out had only arose when Tadeusz, who had been quite liberal at least with food that day, had been quizzed about rations of tobacco and other luxuries that had been posthumously issued. When he had refused to issue the extra rations to the living men of the company, many had felt this was unfair. Janusz resolved the argument by ordering Tadeusz to issue the provisions anyway, '''These have drawn rations for the 3rd. Company? Well, we are the 3rd. Company - as its acting Captain you have my commission on it, those are your orders!'' - Tadeusz had grumbled, but relented - he would quarrel with common soldiers, but he was too much a creature of army bureacracy to challenge officers. He abandoned the kitchen to have its contents emptied by the men, who greedily filled canteens and plates with a sausage and haricot bean stew, covered with a thick film of flavorful grease. Double-rations meant that for once, each man ate enough.

When Tadeusz returned with the company's rations of tobacco, liquor, and so on, each man found he had nearly ten extra cigarettes, as well as an extra pint of beer. Janusz had not acted purely out a duty to pre-empt any disciplinary collapse, and to ensure his men recieved their fair share of rations - he laid claim to the particularly luxuriant (as army rations went) rations drawn for himself and his fellow officers - he pocketed thirty cigars, three bottles of Hungarian wine, and at least six-ounces of chocolate. He magnanimously presented each non-commissioned that remained to the company with a gift of two of the cigars each, and left his men to enjoy their meal, while he would return to the oak tree, enjoying his supper with a smoke, and some wine.

Belarussian Government Returns to Minsk, 20th March, 1921

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Parading down the streets, members of the Belarussian Rada return, lined by troops of the Polish-sponsored Army of Belarussian National Liberation.

With the news of the final capture of Slutsk, and the reports of pro-Polish local uprisings that took place, it was finally announced on the 17th. of March that the Rada of the Democratic Republic of Belarus would relocate its operations to Minsk. This was confirmed when the first members of the Rada arrived the following day, and the first meeting of the Rada to take place in recaptured Minsk taking place on the 20th, where a unanimous vote was taken to express the official thanks of the Belarussian government and people to the people and Army of Poland, and there, ''Fierce, indomitable fighting spirit, and their sincere love for freedom.''.

Public response in Minsk was lukewarm, with many lining the streets to witness the spectacle - key support, however, has come from former supporters of the Kadets, Social Revolutionaries, and other political groups now particularly maligned under Soviet rule. The greatest support for the Poles in Belarus, somewhat ironically, has come from many of the leftist factions now opposed to Bolshevism. In a joint effort with the Belarussian government, the Polish government has begun an effort to collect and publish evidence of Soviet repression - the primary flair of most low-brow Polish newspapers has been for sometime the publishing of the most sordid of these stories. Within the left of Polish politics, many of the revelations relating to the extent of Bolshevik political and social repressions, have triggered a crisis of conciousness. While most of the PSP were already marginally opposed to Bolshevism, which was viewed as overly extreme, and more dangerous due to its open 'Great-Russian Chauvanism' (i.e, the Socio-Political prominence of Russians, or particularly the 'Moskali' European Russians), than for anything else. The damage, however, that Bolshevism could do - not only to Poland or its own people - but to the cause and reputation of the cause of the workers' revolution, and of socialism - is becoming obvious. Rosa Luksemburg, the leader of the PSP, has begun to reach out to fellow socialist leaders across the world, to organise the meeting of Fourth International, one free of 'crypto-reactionary' Bolshevik influences.

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Postby Orostan » Sat Apr 10, 2021 8:40 pm

The Minsk Offensive - April 13th 1921
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Two men part of a Red Army Tank crew participating in the offensive.

During the first half of April and end of March the Red Army dug in across the front and continued air raids against Polish rail infrastructure and positions near Minsk and Slutsk. There were also minor counter attacks as muddy conditions faded across the front, focusing mostly on rail lines. With the ground finally hardening enough to support large offensives again, the Red Army has decided to launch an attack before the Poles get the chance to. The Red Army attacked Polish positions in and around Minsk on the early morning of the 15th from the north, south, and east of the city. Red Army air superiority and information collected from scout aircraft would be invaluable in coordinating artillery barrages prior to the attacks and launching air raids. Particular attention has been directed towards the Polish FT-17 tanks that have been positioned around the front, with artillery directed towards attacking them whenever they appear and infantry directed towards using mountain guns and German AT weapons to penetrate their armor. A total of 250,000 infantry are involved in the offensive, which is not only limited to the Minsk area but also includes attacks directed at recapturing Polatsk and cutting rail links between Minsk and the rest of the front as well as securing other strategic objectives. Even far away from Minsk near Slutsk there are large attacks ongoing designed to keep the Polish army across Belarus stuck in place so that the Red Army can leverage its superior numbers most effectively. Across the front at the most important points, especially around Minsk, the Red Army is supported by sixteen armored trains and thirty of the USSR's seventy Mark V tanks. Cavalry is being used to exploit breakthroughs when they are achieved and attack the enemy from the rear or go after enemy logistics and communication lines.

Particular interest is directed at cutting Minsk off from resupply and reinforcements and to do that a sixteen bomber raid was launched against the Barnovichi rail yards, with ten bombers each striking Grodno and Bialystok on the night of the 12th. A total of three bombers were lost with another two heavily damaged, but the raids against enemy rail yards will continue with large numbers of bombers participating in each increasingly more frequent raid.

With detailed knowledge of Polish positions from weeks of scout aircraft flights and the denial of similar Polish scout flights over Red Army positions, it is likely that in the opening stages of the offensive the Red Army will be able to effectively surround or pass by the strongest Polish positions while destroying the weaker. Soviet artillery has set a large part of its efforts to destroying the enemy artillery positions and keeping the enemy stuck in their trenches so that they are immobilized while they are surrounded. Anticipating that the Poles might respond to the attack by launching counter attacks of their own near Slutsk, a series of attacks have been directed at rail lines north of Slutsk as part of the Soviet strategy of cutting different parts of the Polish front off from each other. Other attacks supported by armored trains were also launched at Slutsk itself from multiple directions in an attempt to gain ground around the city and possibly even enter it.

A quieter section of the front exists nearly 130 kilometers south of Slutsk where smaller attacks have been ongoing mostly based around seizing rail lines connecting Mazyr and Pinsk. The majority of the Red Army's forces in Belarus are focused on the Minsk area offensives and the objective so far south of Slutsk is to prevent the enemy from diverting resources to assist Minsk without losing ground. With almost 750 thousand Red Army troops held in reserve in Belarus alone and trains moving from Ukraine and Russia to Belarus and back on a daily basis, significant supplies have been accumulated to fuel the offensive and support the large number of troops in the field.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN


Sagarmatha wrote:You have a corporatist brain. "It's more faster so it's better". Profit, profit, profit my dear Neoliberal, never forget why you exist. Profit, profit, profit.


Orostan wrote:you have posted cringe, your workers are going to unionize and kill you.

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Poland at War - April, 1921 #7

Postby Nowa Polonie » Mon Apr 12, 2021 10:43 pm

Excerpt from the diary of Captain Jan L. Nowak, 3rd. Company of the 118th. Infantry Regiment, 10th Infantry Division, April 18th.

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''Today we have finally recieved orders via courier to begin a fighting withdrawal, and to begin ceding grounds to the Russians. I cannot say disagree.

In the prior four days, the Russians have attempted no fewer than seven massed-attacks on our lines. Each one joined by a barrage - reports from other sectors on the line mention tanks, though thankfully we have been spared the appearance of one in our own. Aircraft have buzzed overhead, like great birds at the wing - every few hours at least one will be spotted. Each side takes turns to throw shells at the others' flying machines, and at the men.

The state of the men is deplorable - the worst of the thaw has passed, but a thick muck dominates every engagement, and to trip or fall is to lose any momentum. In such conditions, we have been blessed to be in on the defensive. We have learned to await each fresh wave of Russian troops until they are almost upon our lines, sodden in mud, almost at the point of exhaustion. Only then does the killing begin, and the Russians drop like flies in front of our machine-guns. Shells whizz overhead ineffectively - our guns, their guns, fire till their barrels glow, and shells fall with no more guidance than raindrops. In such conditions as these have I, and my men fought.

I am taken away at the sight of the wretchedness of current conditions at the front to the days of my youth - what I would give to enjoy again the beer and bread of home, and to hear again a kind word, spoken without the harshness of battle.
''

The Soviet Spring Offensive - Initial Polish Reactions

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Approximately 15 miles North-East of Slutsk, Polish-backed Belarussian militia provide battery support to nearby units, while a Polish aircraft flies overhead.

The initial successes of the Polish offensive, despite achieving the capture of many crucial Belarussian population centres, including Minsk, the centre of Belarus itself, early gains soon slowed, and eventually stopped outright. Throughout late March, and early April, both the Soviets and Polish had little option in the face of the face of the Eastern European mud season but to consolidate and reinforce what positions they had. Across the front, despite the gloomy conditions, a lull of fighting (at least on the ground), provided Polish units the opportunity to replenish, and for reinforcements to be distributed against the lines. In the earliest days of the offensive, this was decisivie - while Soviet forces have been able to draw upon a force of reserves far deeper than the Poles, many practical restrictions prevent them from bringing their full force of numbers to bare on the battlefield. The Red Army can be assured of a victory, given time and lives, but the Poles, as well as the swelling ranks of their Belarussian auxiliary allies, have not allowed any generosity in condeding territory to the Russians.

General Haller, the overall commander of Poland's forces engaged against the Soviets, has requested an additional 60,000 troops from the other military districts of Poland to replenish reserves for the Belarussian front, while in the face of the oncoming Soviet assault, he has moved his remaining local reserves of 80,000 men in to reinforce Polish units engaging in a fighting withdrawal in the face of sheer Soviet numbers.
Last edited by Nowa Polonie on Tue Apr 20, 2021 7:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Orostan » Tue Apr 13, 2021 2:24 am

Red Army attacks Polotsk and Salihorsk, gains in other parts of the front turn into skirmish warfare - April 21st, 1921

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Red Army cavalry in Slutsk.

The Red Army's spring offensive continues across the front, with what were supposed to be territorial gains turning into cavalry skirmishes and areas where one position might change hands multiple times a day. This is not to say that significant gains have not been made, but that rather than a new front line forming farther to the west fighting has instead become more of a line of skirmishes and intermittent control that moves on a daily basis rather than a solid front. The most significant cavalry battles have occurred south of Polotsk where red cavalry won several skirmishes over rail stops and important villages in the countryside. The front has gradually shifted over rail links between Polotsk and Minsk and enemy rail travel between those two parts of the Polish front has become impossible with red cavalry in the area. Polish supplies to the fortified town of Polotsk have been flowing by the Daugava river and the Dinsa, a tributary of that river. In response to Polish river barges passing along the contested river the Red Army has declared certain zones of the Daugava river on the approach to Polotsk to be off limits to all non-Red Army traffic and has begun a campaign of mining some of those sections of the river and marking others for shelling when Polish barges are spotted heading towards them. To alleviate economic difficulties for peasants affected by the fighting on the river the local peasant soviets have organized a horse cart service to move grain along the river and only load grain onto barges for transport into Latvia for trade or offload barges from Latvia at designated 'safe' points.

With Polotsk cut off from all rail supplies the Poles are now completely reliant on supplying their town by river. The more built up parts of the town are under constant artillery and infantry attack, with two armored trains supporting the Red Army's attacks on the town. A similar situation is occurring in Slutsk where the town center has begun changing hands back and forth. The Red Army, with armored train and tank support, was also able to overwhelm Polish positions south of Slutsk closer to Salihorsk and begin attacks on the city's defenses as part of the campaign to remove Poland from the Slutsk area.

At and around Minsk the most intense fighting has taken place. Large groups of cavalry frequently clash in the countryside with larger Soviet cavalry groups fighting smaller but better led and equipped Polish cavalry. The Poles have also employed particularly large numbers of their own tanks in defending Minsk and Soviet attacks on those positions have been met with heavy casualties and limited gains. Railways from Minsk to Slutsk and other parts of the front have been cut however which at this point isolates the Polish front into three distinct sections around Minsk, Slutsk, and what remains of the Polish held Polotsk area. Red Army tanks and a number of armored trains have greatly assisted in overcoming some of the Polish defenses along rail lines leading into Minsk and in the surrounding area. Some of Minsk's outlying districts and many of its eastern suburbs that were lost earlier in the war are under Red Army control again, but the fighting is hard and the Poles have managed to prevent the Red Army from fully using its numbers and supply advantage in Minsk at least. If they can defend the countryside around the town is another issue entirely.

With the Soviet offensive came a general increase in red partisan activity behind Polish lines. Partisans are particularly important for supplying information to Red cavalry and aiding the Red Army's attempts to take control of important sections of the countryside. Partisans have also been creating increasingly effective explosive charges to put on rail lines and have on several occasions supplied false information to the Poles, leading them to believe that the Red Army is in one place when it is actually in another. In Soviet Belarus pro-Polish partisan activity has also increased though the Cheka has so far kept them away from important rail lines and greatly limited their ability to be effective.

The food situation in the Russian SFSR continues to worsen with food shortages now widely reported across the lower Volga. The requirement of locomotives for the front lines in Belarus contributes to supply difficulties, but so far unrest has still remained limited with what unrest exists concentrated in the Tambov area countryside. The cheka has had some limited success in cleaning out remaining SR and Menshevik propagandists and organizers from the area. The Central Executive Committee of the USSR has authorized the temporary transfer of locomotives on less important rail lines in the north of Russia to the upper Volga to assist in food distribution and has begun authorizing the activity of foreign famine relief groups in the area.
Last edited by Orostan on Tue Apr 13, 2021 2:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN


Sagarmatha wrote:You have a corporatist brain. "It's more faster so it's better". Profit, profit, profit my dear Neoliberal, never forget why you exist. Profit, profit, profit.


Orostan wrote:you have posted cringe, your workers are going to unionize and kill you.

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Nowa Polonie
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Poland at War - April, 1921

Postby Nowa Polonie » Tue Apr 20, 2021 7:20 am

Polish Counter-Attack Resolves Second Battle of Polotsk, Polish Commence Air Offensive over Belarus, April 30th. 1921

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Patrolling the skies over a section of Polish defenses protecting crucial infrastructure to Minsk, Polish fighters have begun a campaign to decisively break the back of Soviet aviators with a mass-deployment of Polish aircraft in overwhelming force over Belarus, or to force the Soviets to cease meaningful air activity. With an inventory of several hundred aircraft, including some of the largest stocks of modern German aircraft outside of Germany, the Polish Airforce has the potential to use its capacity of force in numbers, if for a limited time.

With Polish suspicions about German assistance to the Soviet Union being all but confirmed by the 'Bomber Incident' earlier in the year, it has been further substantiated by increasingly bold attacks by Soviet aviators, using increasingly modern non-Russian designs. While wrecks have been difficult to recover, and in poor condition at their best, within the halls of Modlin Fortress, Polish High Command has been alerted to the near-certainty that design elements of recovered Soviet aircraft are German-designed, or at the least derived from German designs. While this fact has remained unpublished to the public at large, it has been dispatched through diplomatic channels to Poland's Entente partners, and to her delegation staff at the League for Peace.

While the Polish High Command has kept this information close to its chest, it has already begun to employ countermeasures. Until now, the Polish Airforce has preserved parity of numbers with the Soviets, remaining in a primarily reactive stance, so as to preserve reserves of aircraft fuel, and to avoid over-stressing Poland's domestic supply of fuel from Galicia. However, with it becoming apparent that the Soviet's access to increasingly high-quality aircraft will inevitably prolong any slow and attritional aircraft campaign, or even turn it to the eventual favour of the Soviets. The conclusion army planners came to was that a limited eight-week campaign by the full force of Poland's air arsenal was the only possible way for Poland to decisively seize initiative in the war in the skies, and to allow it to focus its full efforts on the war of the ground in the Summer, which will inevitably see fighting more severe than anything previously seen.

As such, beginning on the early morning of April 28th, Polish airforces in Belarus were reinforced by almost the entirety of Poland's aircraft. Operating from the Polish interior, and from forward posts like Minsk, both Soviet and Polish troops were greeted that dawn by unprecedented Polish air activity. At Polotsk, several wings of Polish aircraft launched attacks on Soviet troops attacking the city, harassing both infantry and artillery with light shrapnel bombs and strafing attacks. Likewise, Polish bombers made an appearance over Bobruisk, cratering the runway of a Soviet aerodrome and bombing incendiary bombs on aircraft and ammunition sheds - reports indicate that the ignition of tracer ammunition dump burned throughout the night after the attack, shutting down all activity by that airfield as the flames were battled. The 'Modlin Gang', the Polish High Command's intelligence bureau, authorized a flight by a dozen of Poland's limited stock of heavy bombers, who dropped several hundred small arms and supplies of ammunition and explosives in support of pro-Polish partisans operating in Soviet Belarus, with further efforts to proceed based on how successful reports indicate the policy to be.

This brute force strategy has been chosen precisely because that even despite its limited scope - with planners placing a limit of eight-weeks on operations at this scale, before severe fuel-austerity has to be reimposed - it will necessitate an ultimately favourable outcome for the Polish, to either force the Soviets to hand uncontested air control of Belarus to the Polish, and to give breathing room to Polish ground forces currently engaged in a harsh Soviet counter-offensive, or to contest Polish airforces (which would undoubtedly be costly to the Polish Airforce, though bearably so thanks to her superior reserve of aircraft) and suffer an eventual catastrophic collapse in functional airframes, giving long-term initiative in the air to the Polish.

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The Polish air offensive was marked by localised counter-attacks in Belarus, with Polish forces launching large counter-attacks to secure crucial earlier games - Polish troops in Polotsk were relieved after a weeks-long Soviet counter-attack on the city on the 27th. by the arrival of 8,000 additional Polish troops, supported by an armoured train. The arrival of Polish aircraft the following morning was ultimately decisive in ending the Soviet threat to the city itself, with the break in Soviet artillery support allowing local Polish defenders to push Soviet advance positions near the city, and to secure the approaches to the city from the north side of the Daugava River. Likewise, Soviet cavalry operating around Minsk have faced increasing pressure from Polish counter-attacks utilizing armoured cars - accounts from the front have spoken of Polish-driven armoured cars that have driven into the midst of hundreds of red cavaliers, only to lay low entire companies of man and horse alike with concentrated machine-gun fire. Within Minsk, the Polish Army has created a special depot for the creation of new armoured cars built upon civilian models, including variations for use in patrolling rail-lines against attack, an increasing concern in the face of increasing partisan activity as the weather continues to improve, and the Summer brings further violence.
Last edited by Nowa Polonie on Wed Apr 21, 2021 3:17 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Postby Orostan » Wed Apr 21, 2021 7:38 pm

Red Army changes air strategy, begins offensive in Ukraine - May 1st, 1921

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Lenin speaks to soldiers heading to the front lines on May Day.

Following some success in the offensive in Belarus, the Poles have not diverted resources from Ukraine as was hoped. Instead they have drawn from reserves in the interior of Poland, forcing the Red Army to begin its attack in Ukraine without the Poles having decreased their defenses there. The attack will likely be a surprise, as the Red Army has put significant effort into making the Poles believe that the Red Army had been diverting resources away from Ukraine instead of preparing for a large offensive there. The significantly better logistic situation in Ukraine allows the USSR to prepare 350 thousand men and twenty armored trains for the offensive, with another million or so men in reserve in Ukraine alone. Information that has been gathered on Polish defenses since the start of the war will allow the Red Army to identify Polish strong points and either avoid them or attack them in the most effective way possible. Significant armored train support will allow the Red Army to support attacks and infantry effectively as well. Particular attention is being directed at attacking Rivne, where multiple armored trains and five Mark V tanks have been deployed to help capture the city and break Polish defenses around it. The city of Ternopil has similar resources directed towards capturing it. The offensive is spearheaded by the first cavalry army led by Semyon Budyonny which is generally considered to be one of the better led and organized parts of the Red Army.

Large numbers of Mongolian cavalry are supporting the offensive, and where breakthroughs are made have been arranged into groups for harassing enemy logistics and communications lines. The language barrier limits how well they can coordinate with regular Red Army units, but their willingness to fight and toughness has not gone without notice. In the air, the Red Army has focused on denying the enemy scouting missions and bombing rail yards during the night. The Liviv rail yard was struck by twenty bombers the night before the 1st of May, and other rail yards important for the supplying of Poland’s forces in Ukraine have been struck as well. Three bombers were lost that night to ground fire and another two were heavily damaged and had to land just behind the Red Army front line before reaching their airfield.

In Belarus the Red Army has used its superior number of modern aircraft to pick and choose its fights. Red D. VIIIs have orders to only fight against Polish aircraft of similar quality if they outnumber them, and less modern Red Army aircraft have similar orders. The strategy now is to intercept Polish bombers and to deny the enemy the ability to gather information on the Red Army with scout aircraft while defending the Red Army’s own scout aircraft. With the Red Army briefly thrown back in Polotsk, new attacks on the city with fresh troops have begun to stop the Poles from recovering. So far most of the north bank of the River has remained under Soviet control and after briefly losing the rail connection to Minsk, the Red Army recaptured it. With the rail lines still under Soviet control and the city on the south bank of the river being attacked again, the only way for Poland to keep supplying its men is by dangerous river barge. The Red Army is using significant numbers of cavalry to try and break Polish positions on the other side of the river by attacking from the south - If the Red Army can control both sides of the River, there would be no way for Polotsk to be supplied. The clearing up of muddy conditions has made it easier for the Red Army to launch larger attacks and leverage its numbers advantage over the Poles. Partisans continue their attacks against enemy supply lines and the Red Army has done its best to support and grow what partisan groups exist in Polish Ukraine. Minsk and Salihorsk are still under attack and the much better ground conditions have allowed the Red Army to turn areas of skirmish warfare into areas with a more stable front line where the Red Army can use its advantages better. In Minsk, the Red Army has mounted a large attack aimed at entering the city and another at surrounding it and cutting off the main rail connection to it to coincide with the Ukraine offensive.

With the arrival of the first Pacifican aid in Soviet ports, food is being shipped to the upper Volga region and used to feed cities. This frees up domestically produced resources for the front, but due to distribution problems and the American insistence on managing the aid themselves the situation has not been improved much. It has not worsened, however. The aid also came with a general loosening of Soviet tension with Pacifica and an agreement with the AFN for the establishment of a Republic in Iran with a legal Communist party. In accordance with that agreement the Red Army is making preparations to withdraw but has not left yet.

American aid has also come in the form of weapons purchased from worker cooperatives in the country. With the Pacifican government approving these transactions and moving towards the approval of regular trade with the USSR, the Soviet Union has made it public in America that it is in the market for weapons and fuel as well as skilled labor. Oil from Baku is of no use if it cannot be refined properly.
Last edited by Orostan on Wed Apr 21, 2021 7:45 pm, edited 2 times in total.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN


Sagarmatha wrote:You have a corporatist brain. "It's more faster so it's better". Profit, profit, profit my dear Neoliberal, never forget why you exist. Profit, profit, profit.


Orostan wrote:you have posted cringe, your workers are going to unionize and kill you.

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Poland at War - May 4th, 1921

Postby Nowa Polonie » Sun Apr 25, 2021 6:38 am

Polish Prometheists demonstrate for 'Iranian victory' - Polish Army Launches Massive Counterattack in Ukraine, 4th. of May 1921

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Mobilizing from Lviv, units of the Polish Army there joined with prometheists and other patriots to celebrate the announcement of Soviet withdrawal from Iran. The news has been recieved in Poland as a sign of flagging support within Russia for her imperialist tendencies, and it is believed that Iran, rather than becoming the first fresh victim of renewed Russian aspirations of hegemony, will mark the final decoupling of Russia from her periphery territories.

With the month of May has come a Soviet offensive in Ukraine, and the news of its impending withdrawal from Iran. As Spring turns to Summer, many homes in Poland have a son, a brother, a husband who is today away, fighting. It is with a sense of great emotion then, that recent news has been received, and across the country, as the war's length has begun to be measured in months, rather than weeks, there has been a growing sense of resolve to support the war effort in whatever way necessary to bring about the war's quickest conclusion. In Warsaw, Krakow, and several larger Polish cities, spontaneous street parties were organized to celebrate the news of Poland's most recent diplomatic accomplishment in foiling Russian ambitions of conquest and universal empire. International reporters have indicated that while many did not have much to give, that there was a great feeling of goodwill and solidarity within the civilian population, and many children of the 'Eaglet Youth' organisations belonging to Poland's Prometheist organisations have been seen to be making the best of the fine weather to collect small donations intended for the provision of supplies and equipment to the men fighting at the front.

In the East, and in less metropolitan areas, while support for the war has been much more muted, the local effects have seen an overall improvement in Poland's agricultural output, as the state has rapidly begun to organise local agricultural collectives for the purpose of streamlining lines of food supply to both the army and to the cities. Likewise, issues of local overpopulation and unemployment have been alleviated this year as many of the unemployed either voluntarily enlist, or find themselves drafted. Despite this, in the East in particular the social and economic ills of hoarding have begun to manifest as small-scale profiteers begun to speculate on the profit possibilities if the war drags on into Winter. The Sejm, which has for the most part been uninvolved with the war's prosecution, has instead largely found itself formed into coteries and committees to investigate and legislate within the civilian sphere, with industrial and agricultural welfare being of particular concern, as the Polish state leverages the entirety of its weight behind galvanizing the camarilla of military, business and civilian-political leaders that have, since before the resolution of the First World War, guided the Polish state.

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In Lwiw, primarily ethnic Polish workers made up the bulk of the 1st. Lwiw Military Reserve Brigade, one of four brigades formed in the city this month alone. The units will continue mobilization throughout May, and will be part of a larger 'Emergency Military Reserve Corps' of approximately 40,000 men mobilized locally from the two Ukrainian voivodeships under Poland's control, and for control of which is now being contested. The pre-existing military district system has allowed the Polish remarkable flexibility in how it mobilizes its reserve forces and has allowed it to minimise the social and economic impacts of the war in many parts of Poland that have as of yet been far from the fighting.

This great political and social mobilization has not come from the word of one victory in far off Persia, however; the Soviets have launched a second offensive, and they have beaten the Polish to be the first to do so in Ukraine - where national pride, and military honour is concerned, the challenge has been issued, and within the drawing-rooms of government, within the map-rooms of the military High Command, and within the printing-rooms of Polish newspapers, the question and demand is how the Polish Army will answer - for three months she has traded punches with the Soviets in Belarus, and a sucker-punch to the South has enflamed a pre-existing desire to once again finally go on the attack.

The Soviet offensive itself was neither novel, nor as of yet has it been particularly successful - Polish wiretappers took great amusement in Soviet efforts to conceal the movement of nearly half a million men, and compared the endeavour to 'herding cats'. Despite this, intelligence had failed to accurately assess the purpose of these troop movements and had falsely assumed that the force was a strategic reserve to be used in support of the Belarussian theatre, where the Soviets had up until now seemed to focus the greatest extent of attention. As a result, the offensive came as a shock to the Polish High Command of the East, which is conducting the war from Lwiw, now actively considered a 'frontline city', being only roughly 100km from the front. As Poland's second-city, and the nexus of its infrastructure and administration in not only Ukraine, but the entire Krecy region, its loss would be near-catastrophic. The Polish reaction then, has been immediate. Soviet attacks towards Rivne and Tarnopil, themselves not insignificant cities, were confounded by the overambition and over-reliance on cavalry by their commander, General Budyonnoy - Soviet armoured trains failed to assist efforts to seize Ternopil entirely, as their commanders failed to realize that the rail-lines of the local area are built in the Austrian railway gauge - Polish armoured trains had no such issue, and several were used to devestating success in annihilating massed cavalry formations that attempted to surround the city. No such problem existed in Rivne, however, where vicious duels were fought between trains for control of rail-lines, and for the freedom to support nearby units also engaged in fighting. The singular issue for the Soviets has primarily arisen in that its numerical superiority has been insufficient, (outnumbering local Polish forces of 240,000 by a figure of 110,000 - significant, but by no means overwhelming.). From its interior, and moving quickly along major rail-lines like the pre-existing Krakow-Lwiw and Warsaw-Kiev links, the Polish have dispatched 60,000 men to reinforce its forces fighting in Ukraine, with a further 40,000 to be raised locally to supplement this. By the end of May, Polish forces in the area should achieve practical force-parity with the Soviet attackers, and knowledge of this has precipitated swift responses by local Polish frontline commanders, who have already begun to launch local counter-attacks and encirclements, encouraged by a Soviet policy of avoiding known Polish strongpoints, allowing Polish units to coordinate, communicate and pivot forces from these points - one Soviet cavalry battalion surrendered almost in its entirety (some 800 men), after finding it had advanced without support thirty miles into Polish territory, only to find that the Polish had simply re-established their frontline behind them, trapping them without means of supply or contact.

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Poland has organised its cavalry forces in Ukraine into the 1st. Cavalry Army, under General Juliusz Rómmel. Numbering a total of 8 regiments, with 22,000 men total, the cavalry are considered among the finest of Poland's ground forces, being trained both in the traditional cavalry role, and in modern trench fighting. Likewise, under forward-thinking young officers, it has become the vanguard of Poland's modern military thought, advocating an increasing emphasis on cooperation between traditional forces, and modern mechanized weaponry - which it hopes to place within the cavalry's sphere.
Last edited by Nowa Polonie on Sun Apr 25, 2021 6:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Orostan
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Postby Orostan » Sun Apr 25, 2021 5:42 pm

Red Army Takes Ternopil and Rivne, front line stabilizes in Ukraine - May 10th, 1921

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Trotsky speaking to troops near Zhytomyr.

The offensive in Ukraine took the city of Rivne on the 8th and Ternopil on the 9th, and the Reds in Rivne repelled a Polish counter-attack aimed at recapturing the city. The Polish strategy of launching counter-attacks from strong points has resulted in Polish units winning brief skirmishes, and then being surrounded after leaving their defenses to the Reds. This has resulted in the capture of a significant number of Polish guns and three Renault FT tanks of French manufacture. After capturing Rivne and Ternopil, the Red Army has adopted a strategy of establishing multiple defensive lines behind the front line with their reserves. This means that any Polish break through can be contained quickly, and because of the Red Army's overwhelming numbers advantage it can support what is essentially three separate armies in Ukraine of even size, only one of which can be on the front line at any given time however due to logistical restrictions.

With Polish counter attacks more frequent and further advances more costly, the Red Army has switched to a strategy of attrition. It is believed by the Red Army that this strategy is already having an effect, as the Poles would not have been forced to draft large numbers of Ukrainians and Belorussians who are potentially sympathetic to the USSR's cause. As the USSR enters Polish occupied Ukraine, the Cheka has made a show of land reform and prosecuting wealthy backers of the Polish government. The war at the front has grown more brutal during the summer, and both sides have taken heavy casualties. The Red Army however knows that the Polish army cannot sustain a war of attrition, where the Red Army can. With the food situation in the upper Volga improving very gradually the Red Army also no longer faces as bad problem in its rear and can begin to free up locomotives for work on supplying the army. It is already at the point that for every Red the Polish kill, two more are ready to take his place. As the attacks continue in the Polotsk area and the Red Army continues to attempt to surround Minsk the Poles will be forced to bleed more and more men, and they have many less of them than the USSR does. The current strategy is to maximize enemy casualties and trade evenly, or attempt to trade for a slight advantage with them. As long as the Soviets can do that, they can win the war.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN


Sagarmatha wrote:You have a corporatist brain. "It's more faster so it's better". Profit, profit, profit my dear Neoliberal, never forget why you exist. Profit, profit, profit.


Orostan wrote:you have posted cringe, your workers are going to unionize and kill you.


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