Narvik PBEM: German Turn 3 (April 16 – 19, 1940)
On to Trondheim
German forces begin the move north from Oslo. Elements of three Infantry divisions ride the rails. In the valley to the east some Norwegians are trying to escape, two 0-4 Group HQ are overrun in 10B:3002 (they were alone in the hex). Our advance caught up to more fleeing units in the next hex where a 6:1 results in a DE against a 1-4 Bde HQ and two more of the 0-4 Group HQs. The Kings Guard Bn, Infantry Bn and a Lt Arm Bn are now sandwiched between our forces at the bend in the eastern valley. Luftwaffe bombing disrupts the armor and Guards, which means they cannot attack during the Norwegian player-turn.
Meanwhile, most of two divisions move toward Mob Center 8 at Evje in southwestern Norway, establishing a partial surround. The odd lot of Norwegian units there (10 defense factors) means either a slow withdrawal or every unit for themselves. Norwegians have always liked “epic” battles, perhaps they will make a heroic stand instead of running away.
While ground units are moving into position the Luftwaffe remained busy. A 3-5 Mtn Artillery Bn was airlifted to Andalsnes by He115s and an AA Bn, Fallschirmjager company and supply depot were aboard 10x Ju52 that used the new frozen lake airbase east of Namsos. A blocking position (5 DF) is established here to discourage the Norwegian mountain troops (4 AF) from moving on Namsos. Another company of paratroopers was dropped on the suppressed airbase at Kristiansand to provide ground defense if the need arises. The remaining Ju52s airlifted a Mountain Rgt (9-5) to Oslo-West.
While an attack to seize the airbase at Trondheim would’ve been nice there are too many allied troops in the area to hold it. Instead, 3x He111 and 7x Ju88 attacked the five CLAs providing flak cover for the British supply base in Trondheim. AA took down one He111 and one CLA was sunk. Not much in the way of results for such an effort. Elsewhere in the vicinity of Trondheim numerous Norwegian troops were subject to Luftwaffe visits. Many of these were single air unit raids designed to entice the RAF Blen 1F into aerial combat. The plan worked a little too well, resulting in an Me110 killed but no damage to the Blenheim. Luftwaffe staff officers were so eager to bomb troop units they completely forgot to attack RAF bombers at Bergen.
German planes stationed in Denmark attacked Royal Navy ships interdicting Kristiansand, but only two units out of five found their targets (50% chance). Neither AA fire nor bombing scored any damage.
At the end of Germany’s 3rd player-turn the Victory Point score is +21 in favor of Norway, but the advance north is proceeding well, some would say ahead of schedule. There are plenty of uncommitted troops waiting in Germany and shipping capacity doubles next turn.