Eighty years on. 24th August 1940


Fine weather heralded the return of sustained Luftwaffe activity over southern England.  All day raids crossed the coast of Kent, bombing RAF airfields at Hornchurch, North Weald and Manston.  The Luftwaffe lost 22 fighters and 18 bombers while the RAF lost 20 fighters.  In the afternoon 50 German aircraft bombed Portsmouth, killing 100 civilians and injuring 300 more.

The British destroyers HMS Acheron and HMS Bulldog were damaged in Portsmouth Harbour.  

Overnight there was widespread bombing of British cities.  Notably, Germans bombers hit parts of North, East and West London, suggesting a deliberate attack rather than a couple of bombers straying off target. The Luftwaffe also dropped bombs on the financial heart of London and Oxford Street in the West End, probably unintentionally as the German bomber pilots had likely made a navigational error and did not know they were over the city.   Winston Churchill was outraged at what he perceived to be a deliberate attack and ordered the RAF to bomb Berlin in retaliation.

The German battleship Bismarck was commissioned into service.

Just after midnight two miles off the North coast of Ireland, U-57 attacked convoy OB-202, sinking the British SS Saint Dunstan and  SS Cumberland and damaging the SS Havildar.   Later U-48 sank the  British tanker La Brea, with 9,410 tons of fuel oil, 130 miles West of the Outer Hebrides

U-37 sank the British SS Brookwood in mid-Atlantic 500 miles West of Ireland, and later sank the sloop HMS Penzance escorting convoy SC-1

In the Indian Ocean 900 miles East of Madagascar, the German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis sank the British SS King City carrying 7,300 tons of coal and coke to Singapore from Cardiff.

A team of pathologists at Oxford University published laboratory results in The Lancet describing methods for the production of penicillin and the effects of its chemotherapeutic action on laboratory mice.

Game day 359.  Week 52.  Chinese economy and action.

China has a population of 572 million, not including the area occupied by Japan.  The main products are wheat, rice, cotton, silk and tobacco.  It is self-sufficient in food. There is no heavy industry.

There are about 250,000 men under arms, equivalent to 72 infantry divisions.  The forces deployed in the previous version of the game amounted to 36 infantry units, so I simply doubled the numbers.

Four infantry divisions were behind Japanese lines in Kiang-Si province.  Outnumbering the Japanese 4:1 they moved west across the Yang-Tse river to attack the Japanese.  The combat was fought using rules taken from Philip Dunn’s book “Sea Battle Games” published by Model and Allied Publications Ltd.   Deal 1 card per 1000 men.  Chinese 140,000, Japanese 35,000.  Casualties = 50 men per point on the card.  the Chinese lost 12,050 men, the Japanese were eliminated.

In the north, in Tsinghai province, eight Chinese divisions attacked one Japanese division.  The Chinese lost 12,550 men and the Japanese were eliminated.

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General Whiskers

Wargaming butterfly (mainly solo), unpainted model figure amasser, and Historical Re-enactor of the black powder era.

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