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1

Sunday, May 13th 2018, 12:41am

Operation Pegase

Repository for posts pertaining to the forthcoming Franco-German-Russian fleet exercise.

(more to follow)

RN in-character comments are welcome here too ;)

2

Sunday, May 13th 2018, 1:18am

The Admiralstab, Berlin, Sunday, 19 September 1948

The map on the plotting table in the Operations Room showed the vast expanse of the North Sea and the North Atlantic, though at the moment it showed relatively few markers.

“Have the two halves of our task force made rendezvous?” Bramesfeld, Director of Plans, had only just arrived.

“Yes, Admiral Engel sent the rendezvous signal an hour ago.” Merten usually had such details at his fingertips. “Well Gerlach, have the English reacted yet? We made enough of a show getting the ships out there.”

“Our U-boat patrols have noted the departure for sea of several British vessels, some as much as two days ago, when the task force began its transit. We have noted an increase in signals traffic, and Dorniers of the Marineflieger are tracking several.”

Bramesfeld nodded. “Is FO Bayard still at Dakar?”

Merten shook his head. “Bailly has taken the precaution of moving Bayard to Casablanca – a double-edged sword. Yes, it places him closer to the probable area of operations, but forces him to make an early decision on where to engage. If he passes to the east of Atlantis, he will not be able to intercept Engel until he moves towards the Biscay ports; if he passes to the west of Atlantis, he can intercept further west but he will lose time in transit.”

“Very good – we designed the exercise with many free-play options.”


Aircraft carrier Wallenstein, 57 dgs 15 min North, 6 dgs 13min East, Sunday, 19 September 1948

Vizeadmiral Siegfried Engel checked the dradis plot one last time to confirm that all the ships of the task force were in their proper station. This was the first time that the three allied navies had sailed together under operational conditions, and it never hurt to be cautious. The sun was already beginning to set on the western horizon.

“Signal to all ships. Set course 315, speed 18 knots.”

3

Monday, May 14th 2018, 3:05pm

Good so far! :)

Bramesfeld nodded. “Is FO Bayard still at Dakar?”

Merten shook his head. “Bailly has taken the precaution of moving Bayard to Casablanca – a double-edged sword. Yes, it places him closer to the probable area of operations, but forces him to make an early decision on where to engage. If he passes to the east of Atlantis, he will not be able to intercept Engel until he moves towards the Biscay ports; if he passes to the west of Atlantis, he can intercept further west but he will lose time in transit.”

OOC: Atlantean geography shouldn't be an issue regardless of whether or not FO Bayard bases from Dakar or Casablanca - Atlantis is significantly further south than Casablanca, and due west of Dakar.

4

Monday, May 14th 2018, 4:18pm

Oops. My bad. Someone better fix the Admiralstab's charts.

5

Tuesday, May 15th 2018, 10:01pm

Aircraft carrier Wallenstein, 58 dgs 29 min North, 4 dgs 18min East, Monday, 20 September 1948

Engel had ordered a course change to the north shortly after midnight; his intentions were to pass well to the east of the Shetlands before attempting a breakout to the Atlantic. Already the task force’s electronic detection gear was picking up the first, tentative, shadowing aircraft. Those on the eastern lobe he judged to be Nordish – their bases were barely a hundred kilometres away. Those to the west however he judged to British, and had given orders accordingly. Aircraft had been launched from the Pappenheim to play cat-and-mouse with whatever aircraft the British had sent out from their northern bases. Once the sun rose in the morning the game would truly be afoot.

His heavy cruisers were in the vanguard, and they were already reporting sightings of merchant traffic on the regular routes between Nordmark and the British Isles; for the moment, he had directed them to ignore such contacts – that was not the purpose of the exercise. Of the options available to him he had chosen the Denmark Strait – it would keep him well away from British bases and give the most flexibility in exercising with FO Bayard, the designated OpFor for the exercise. For the moment there was little to do but wait.

6

Tuesday, May 15th 2018, 11:35pm

Good so far! :)

Bramesfeld nodded. “Is FO Bayard still at Dakar?”

Merten shook his head. “Bailly has taken the precaution of moving Bayard to Casablanca – a double-edged sword. Yes, it places him closer to the probable area of operations, but forces him to make an early decision on where to engage. If he passes to the east of Atlantis, he will not be able to intercept Engel until he moves towards the Biscay ports; if he passes to the west of Atlantis, he can intercept further west but he will lose time in transit.”

OOC: Atlantean geography shouldn't be an issue regardless of whether or not FO Bayard bases from Dakar or Casablanca - Atlantis is significantly further south than Casablanca, and due west of Dakar.


The fact that French ships are NOT transiting either side of Atlantis makes it easier to explain why Atlantean ships are not participating, or rather Atlantis is not participating and allied ships are sailing past heading to the party....

7

Saturday, May 19th 2018, 11:54am

20 September

The First Sea Lord, Admiral of the Fleet Bruce Fraser, and the Second Sea Lord, Admiral Sir William Whitworth and the Vice Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Andrew Cunningham, plus their staffs, looked at the plotting chart.
Since leaving Kiel and the Baltic the German and combined GA fleets had been tracked fairly thoroughly by both submarine and aircraft and already a few ships of the Navy's screen had made contact and were shadowing at a discrete distance. Nore and Channel Command would keep tabs on the exercises as they transited the North Sea. Unlike the last exercises the aim appeared to be operations in the North Atlantic. Intelligence from North Africa indicated French units were in readiness, although the Atlanteans seemed strangely quiet.

As he looked at the table Fraser stroked his chin. Three days ago Force Y had slipped from Portsmouth and headed south-west until clear of French aerial patrols. He could only guess Admiral Syfret's exact position as the force was operating under strict radio silence. Under the plans already laid he should be now be heading north, probably some 150 miles south of Iceland. Once again the Germans had spoiled their plans, the redisposition of the fleet was incomplete but Force Y comprised the battleships Nelson, Fisher and Duke of York, the carriers Magnificent, Centaur and Albion, the heavy cruisers Surrey and Cornwall, the light cruisers Amphion, Phaeton, Iris and Mercury and the eight Battle-class destroyers of the 9th Destroyer Flotilla. Cunningham plotted out some likely interception routes depending on which route to the Atlantic the exercise forces would take. The consensus that they would take the Denmark Strait, the furthest from British recon flights and also perhaps avoiding the worst of possible Nordish tracking from Iceland. Fraser could only hope that Syfret would make the same conclusion, that was the worst of commanding from the shore, having to rely on your sea commanders decision-making capabilities. In any case he knew Force Y was in good hands with Admiral Syfret. Now they just had to wait.

8

Saturday, May 19th 2018, 5:46pm

OOC: Typical British over-reaction! ;) I think Force Y is bigger than both parts of the exercising fleets in their totality...

For elements of disclosure, FO Bayard, the opfor in this exercise, is composed of the following units:

Quoted

5th Division de Porte-avions: Zélé, Héros
5th Division de Croiseurs: Redoubtable, Renommée
13th Flotilla Torpillieurs: L'Inflexible, L'Inébranlable, L'Infatigable, L'Implacable


British intelligence, at least, would know that these are the ships in play, since it's about 80% of the French Atlantic surface forces at the present time.

Some additional escortier rapides and underway replenishment ships are tagged on, too.

9

Sunday, May 20th 2018, 10:58am

OOC: we like over reactions! Actually some of those ships are heading north anyway for redeployment. I don't intend to get caught up too much in the exercise beyond watching from a distance.

10

Sunday, May 20th 2018, 5:14pm

Quoted

we like over reactions!

Over reactions can cause incidents...

... maybe a certain huge and evil nation far to your east might send a submarine to the Atlantic on a mission and sink one of the vessels involved while hiding underneath the ship of another nation (kind of like Star Trek VI) to cause an incident. :)

11

Yesterday, 7:18am

Quoted

we like over reactions!

Over reactions can cause incidents...

... maybe a certain huge and evil nation far to your east might send a submarine to the Atlantic on a mission and sink one of the vessels involved while hiding underneath the ship of another nation (kind of like Star Trek VI) to cause an incident. :)


Better send it now, you might get there to watch the news reels released to the public after the fact.... :P

12

Yesterday, 3:34pm

Aircraft carrier Wallenstein, 65 dgs 26 min North, 3 dgs 22 min West, Tuesday, 21 September 1948

The task force under Admiral Engel had made good progress thus far, and had succeeded in its mission of attracting the attention of the Royal Air Force’s long-range aircraft, as well as some of the lighter ships of the Royal Navy. Unlike previous exercises the combat air patrols from his aircraft carriers had instructions to do their best to keep such snoopers at bay – ‘escorting’ them if necessary; there was no reason to make the task of the English easier by playing nice. Similarly the escorting destroyers of the Russian Thirteenth Flotilla frequently found themselves engaged in shepherding an English destroyer or sloop that changed to get too close.

Their present course would take them north of Iceland and through the Denmark Strait, after which they could begin their simulation of commerce raiding – a task Engel thought would be accomplished easily with air support. He expected FO Bayard to make an appearance shortly thereafter to begin its hunt. As night fell around him he ordered a course change to the northwest.


The Admiralstab, Berlin, Tuesday, 21 September 1948

Gerlach read the latest intelligence report from the French allies with interest.

“Three battleships, three aircraft carriers, numerous cruisers and destroyers left Portsmouth on the seventeenth; they now passed beyond the range of French air patrols so their exact whereabouts is uncertain.”

“We were expecting a reaction from the English but that seems a bit much, particularly with the ships they already have trailing Engel.” Nevertheless Merten placed the markers for the British task force on the plotting map. “Should we send a blind signal to Engel informing him of this development?”

Bramesfeld nodded. “There is no reason we cannot send a blind signal.”