Greetings gentlemen! For this week's Vintage Mission will take us to the 30th of November, 1917. We will go down and dirty into the mud of the trenches for close ground support with the boys in the Battle of Cambrai.
BATTLE OF CAMBRAI
Weather conditions: Overcast, wind direction 140 degrees, 3.5 m/s at ground
Mission Duration: 9.00am-13.30pm
The Germans reinforced Cambrai so rapidly that it became clear that it was possible to go over to the attack, the first attack made by the Germans on the Western Front since Verdun. A pincer mover was planned, with attacks from north and south driving to Metz to surround the British forces. The attack was to be led by the new 'stormtroopers,' and also by the CL-type aircraft, which were expected to provide more consistent support from the air than the unwieldy and unreliable British tanks had fom the ground. However, the northern pincer ran straight into the British artillery supporting the attack on Bourlon. Though the British had failed to progress through Bourlon Wood, which became saturated with German gas, the attack was not called off. It may have been difficult for Haig to order a retreat after bells had been rung for a great victory. Meanwhile, reports of German forces massing on the flanks were simply ignored at HQ, from the belief that the German army was exhausted. On the morning of November 30th the thinly held and unfortifed southern British perimeter was quickly overrun. The German attack in the south is beginning to falter. Both sides need to support their ground operations directly from the air, and also to protect their ground attack aircraft.
The German trucks will advance down the two red lines marked on the map, on in the northern section and one in the southern.
*NOTE* The mud of the trenches on this map is offset, the blue and red shading will mark the true current position of enemy / friendly territory, not the position no man's land.
*Machines are to strafe and bomb the enemy at all opportunities.*Destroy enemy horse artillery on the roads and enemy strongpoints.
German objectives: *Assist in the reduction of enemy strongpoints. *Destroy enemy reinforcements before they can interfere.
VICTORY: The side that first destroys 100 targets wins (vehicles and strongpoints).
Mission start: 1900GMT