War in the East – The Road to Smolensk – Turn 3

The Soviets were busy during their turn, forming a new line along the Dvina and the Dnepr, as the scenario notes suggested. The new line looks something like this:

The New Soviet Line

The plan from last turn remains in effect. I will attempt to push my infantry units forward, ideally creating a new line before encircling the Soviets. It also looks like the 2nd Panzer Group (light blue) can make a push on the Southern front crossing the Dnepr and securing Gomel, before a drive north in an attempt to encircle the Soviets. The 3rd Panzer Group (light green) will move north along the Dvina, preparing to push through the line north of Vitebsk, once the infantry catch up. The infantry armies will push forward, as far as their little legs can take them.

The move goes mostly as planned. The infantry are slower than I expected, which leaves a number of them bunched up in the center of the front. This also leaves a gap between the two Panzer Groups, which an aggressive Soviet commander could exploit.

The Situation at the End of Turn Three

I think I am safe, however, because the Soviet units are not mobile enough to drive and cut off my supply. If they do come through the gap, I can cut them off and pocket them next turn. I hope.

On the northern front, my infantry is in a position to cross the Daugava and support 3rd Panzer Group, which will attempt to cross the Dvina and link up with the 2nd Panzer Group in a second encirclement.

The Northern Front at the End of Turn Three

On the southern front, the 2nd Panzer Group has crossed the Dnepr south of Mogilev, capturing Gomel and taking position to exploit northwards, potentially encircling a set of Soviet units.

The Southern Front at the End of Turn Three

Next turn will be additional positioning, to prepare for a second major encirclement. Assuming the Soviets cooperate.

Next Post: More jockeying for position, some minor conflict.

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