Sunday, August 18, 2019

KG Klink, France, Game 11


All,


Ambush at Abbeville, #4
0715 28 May 1940

Following the fighting in and around Flavion, KG Klink was briefly pulled out of the line to rest, refit, perform maintenance on their weapons, machines, and equipment, and bring in a few replacements.  They were actually parked outside the Dunkirk perimeter when they were called back to action; further south, German forces had forced a crossing on the Somme.  At 0600 27 on May, the Allies counterattacked the German bridgehead, striking the German 57th Infantry Division southwest of Abbeville, in an attempt to reach the encircled Allied troops at Dunkirk.

Unbeknownst to the Germans, the French
French 4e DCr (or 4th Division Cuirassee, 4th Armored Division) arrived in the battle area that evening.  The French force, heavily armed with Char B1, Somua S-35, and Hotchkiss light tanks, immediately set about reorganizing, preparing to attack on the morning of 28 May.


But
KG Klink moved all through the night in order to reach the battle area. arriving at approximately  0500 on 28 May.  The plan was for KG Klink to counterattack down the Blangy-Abbevile Road, hoping to flank the French 2e DLC (2nd Cavalry Division), maybe even cut all the way across and in behind the British 51st Highland Division, cutting off the British 1st Armored Division.  With that, KG Klink set off, passing through the German 217th Infantry Regiment, launching its attack down the Blangy-Abbeville Road.  KG Klink passed through Villers sur Mareuil, then Huppy, and were moving towards St Maxent en Vimeu, when they encountered trouble near the three (fictional) villages, Dujour, Deture, and Toujour, on the River Bleu.

The first fight saw Colonel Klink lead the 1st Grenadier Platoon, supported by Stugs, in the attack on Dujours.  Repulsed, they were reinforced by the 4th Grenadier Platoon and drove the French force back onto Hill 44.

The second fight saw 1st Lt Tausch, lead his 3rd Grenadier Platoon into the assault on Hill 34.  The attack stalled in several locations, but the Lieutenant's skillful leadership maneuvered his troops until they were able to unhinge the enemy's defensive line.

The third fight saw the Reconnaissance Company Commander, 1Lt Wehner, seize the bridge at Deture after some very heavy street fighting.

The fourth fight sees Colonel Klink lead the remnants of the 1st Grenadier Platoon up Hill 44 to eliminate enemy forces in the southeast.

The overall area of operations, and that stupid north-seeking arrow at top right is incorrect, north is to far left...  The three villages are, from left to right: Dujour, Deture, and Toujour, and the hills are, from left to right: Hill 34, Hill 44, and Hill 54.  The River Bleu runs east-west down the center of the table.

My intent is to play a series of battles on a 6' x 4' layout, using small pieces, maybe 2' x 2' with 10mm troops.  I've gone back to my old standby, Ivan's "5Core Company Command."

The fourth fight is Colonel Klink leading the remnants of 1st Grenadier Platoon, who barely took the village of Dujour in Fight #1 (with help), up to clear enemy stragglers off the top of Hill 44, in order to firm up the left (eastern) flank of the Kampfgruppe's penetration.

The opposing forces, with Germans on left and French on right.  The French are completely made of Minifigs UK troops, while the German infantry is Minifigs, but the Stug and command stand are Pendraken.

The German force:
CO: Colonel Klink (Iron Cross 2nd Class), Kampfgruppe Commander
Stug III: Sgt Kulle
2nd Squad, 1st Platoon: Cpl Arteis (and acting Platoon Commander
4th Squad, 1st Platoon Cpl Lipniki (really remnants of 1st and 3rd Squads as 4th Squad almost entire casualties)
1st Squad, 2nd Motorcycle Platoon: Sgt Eisen
3rd Squad, 2nd Motorcycle Platoon: Cpl Pankau

The French force:
Commanding Officer
1 x MG Team
1 x 25mm Anti-Tank Gun
Two Rifle Squads

My interpretation of the operational area, with the villages Dujour (top left), Deture (center), and Toujour (far right) and hills 34 (bottom center left), 44 (top center left), and 54 (bottom center right, with the River Bleu running east-west (top to bottom) at center.

Overview of the battle area, north is down, the village of Dujour is at bottom left, the village of Deture is just visible at top right, and the objective, Hill 44, is at top left.  With the bridge over the River Bleu seized (just off camera to top center right), you can see Major Schultz leading 4th Grenadier Platoon up into position to assault the final village, Toujour.  But Colonel Klink (bottom left) has more pressing problems: he has Sgt Kulle's Stug staged behind some hedges at far right, escorted by Sgt Eisen's squad, while the good Colonel is in the village with Cpl Arteis, Lipniki, and Pankau's squads.  The plan is to have the Stug pound the French hilltop positions (top left) while Colonel Klink leads the platoon up the northern slope to close assault the enemy into oblivion.

The German setup: Colonel Klink with Cpl Pankau's squad in the house and Cpl Arteis and Lipniki's squads sheltering behind, waiting for the Stug (top right, escorted by Sgt Eisen's squad) to commence the bombardment.

The French position: at left is a sandbagged position containing the French 1st Squad and CO.  Moving right you get the French MG and ATG, then the French 2nd Squad holding down their left flank.  The remnants of Dujour's garrison, there's not much to work with, but the Germans aren't much better off.

And right off the bat, things go the French's way: while Sgt Kulle thinks he's been clever in finding a covered route to get his Stug (top left) into position on his start line, the French 25mm gun crew saw him get in there, then spotted him through a hole in the foliage.  With the German machine sitting still, engine idling, they patiently line up a shot and take it...

The solid-shot armor piercing round slams into the Stug, immobilizing it and causing Sgt Kulle and his crew to bail out!  And not only that, but Sgt Eisen's squad is suppressed as well!

*Well, that's a helluva start to the game.  Actually, it started well for the Germans: the French rolled up a 'scurry,' which is the absolute worst thing that can happen to a static defense, since you can only move but not shoot.  BUT, they not only rolled the scurry, they also rolled up a Random Event that not only allowed them an anti-tank shot, but an anti-tank shot with some added accuracy.  Perfect...

Cpl Pankau's squad, in the house, fires up hill, having located the French machine gun position

And now it's the French CO's turn to be shocked, as he watches his machine gun team knocked out by rifle fire coming uphill!

And Colonel Klink leads his other two squads up, doing his best to utilize dead ground to keep French fire off of them.

*Sgt Eisen's squad is suppressed at top right, with very little chance of materially contributing to this fight as no friendly unit is close enough to move over to help rally them, and it's not likely the German CO will be willing to spend command impetus to rally them vice keep the attack moving.  Kinda sucks, if ya ask me...

The French 1st Squad (in the defensive emplacement) yelps for help, bringing their 2nd Squad over (far left, from bottom center) to assist in their defense against the German infantry (just visible, coming up the hill, at top left).

And the French anti-tank gun crew begins pushing their gun up, trying to get it into play (center left, from center bottom).

From the house, Cpl Pankau's squad continues to lay down covering fire for the rest of the platoon (far left).

As Cpl Lipniki's squad moves up to the treeline (far left).

They (far left) manage to draw the attention of the French 1st Squad, and the two exchange fire to little effect (the French became pinned).

The French CO (top right) spurs his men on, wanting them to fight harder.  They rise up and unleash another fusillade...

But Cpl Lipniki's squad has the MG-34 going now and the French are suppressed.

*That's just artistic license, no actual change in what I did, they're both rolling 1K 1S.

The French 2nd Squad (center right), unable to engage the closing German infantry (top right) because of dead ground, fire on Cpl Pankau's squad in the house (top left)...

Putting them out of the fight, despite being in relatively good cover!  The squad didn't take heavy casualties, it was more in shock at the loss of its leader, when Cpl Pankau was killed in action.

And then a shocking turn of events, as Colonel Klink leads Cpl Arteis and his squad into close combat with the suppressed French 1st Squad.  The Germans got up and over the sandbags, but the French rose up and eliminated them (right) as Cpl Lipniki's squad (far left) looks on!

Even worse, Cpl Arteis was killed in action and Colonel Klink was moderately wounded!  The CO was wounded bad enough to be out of this fight, require evacuation, and about two months to convalesce.  Little did he know it, but Major Schultz just became the acting Kampfgruppe Commander!

*And my humble apologies, I don't know how I did that, but I somehow missed the vital picture showing Col Klink and Cpl Arteis going over the top.

So, now what?  The French have two squads, a CO, and an ATG, the Germans only two squads (and one is suppressed).  I roll to see if the Germans continue or pack it in...

Enraged by the death of his friend and the wounding of his commander, Cpl Lipniki pushes his men through the treeline and into melee with the French 1st Squad and CO!

And, against the odds, Cpl Lipniki's squad returns the favor!  The French CO and 1st Squad are knocked out of the fight!

And as Cpl Lipniki's men take up firing positions in the French emplacement, the French anti-tank gunners and 2nd Squad riflemen throw up their hands in surrender.

Sgt Eisen brings his squad up to help out.  Better late than never, I suppose.  And with that, the mission is accomplished, Hill 44 is secured.

*Sorry, a small fight, perhaps a small, silly fight, but necessary to move the narrative along.  You'll see why.

So, with Hill 44 (bottom left) and the bridge at Deture (top right) in German hands, it's time for the assault on Toujour (off camera to top left).  The now acting KG Klink Commander, Major Schultz (center), continues to move 4th Grenadier Platoon up to it's jump-off point.  But there's a problem: the Germans have not cleared Hill 54 (off camera to top right) and it's infernal French mortar crew, which continues to drop rounds indiscriminately on the crossroads at Deture.  Not wanting to suffer casualties before they even reach the line of departure, Maj Schultz changes the plan on the fly: he will soon be supported by the Panzer Company's 1st Platoon, consisting of five Panzer Mk IIs, but now this will be a two-pronged attack.  Maj Schultz is moving the infantry platoon to cross the river further east, away from the French mortars, so they'll hit the village of Toujour from there, as the panzer platoon crosses the bridge at Deture and swings slightly right to attack from the western quarter.

Major Schultz moves the 4th Grenadier Platoon east, on the north side of the river (Deture, with the Reconnaissance Company, at right, Toujour at top center, Hill 54 just visible at top right).

Where the resolute Germans set about crossing the River Bleu in small boats.

You don't know how many years I waited to take this photograph ;)

Safely across, Major Schultz forms them up, east of Deture.

As Lt Schiffer's Panzer IIs enter the battle area from the north, near the farmhouse (Dujour and Hill 44 off camera to top center).

The panzers continue south, nearing the bridge at Deture.

And up and over the bridge, reaching the line of departure, moving into the attack.

A very unorthodox fight, right from the get-go, and I really expected it to be a bit of a pushover for the Germans.  I probably should have had the Germans fall back after losing Col Klink and Cpl Arteis, but then I realized, the Germans don't really have a reserve.  They need to take Hill 44, but if I don't do it now, when will they do it?  The only support available is panzers, and they're not great at taking hilltops and, with my luck, they'll just get shot to pieces by that damn French ATG up there anyway, screwing up my plans for later fights anyway!  So I did roll, thinking I could pull another Motorcycle Squad an maybe an Engineer Squad into the fight, but was quite pleased when the Germans not only stayed, but that Cpl Lipnicki's gambit got extremely lucky and carried the day.

As the Landser policed up the battlefield, Sgt Kulle, who lost two of his Stug crewmen to the French ATG, arrived atop the hill, apologizing with tears in his eyes for letting the team down, watching as they covered the bodies of Corporals Pankau and Arteis, and carried away the wounded Colonel Klink on a litter.  "Don't fret boys, I'll be back..."

Germans: ~30 KIA/WIA, 1 Stug III damaged
French: ~20 KIA/WIA, 15 captured, 25mm ATG captured

Of the named characters, three were hit:
Colonel Klink, KG Commander, WIA, out for campaign (60 days, but that's longer than the campaign)
Cpl Arteis, 2nd Sqd, 1st Gren Plt, KIA
Cpl Pankau, 3rd Sqd, 2nd Motorcycle Plt, KIA

Cpl Lipniki was decorated for his effective, point-blank exchange of fire atop Hill 44, then leading his squad in a close assault that broke the back of the enemy's defense there, eliminating an enemy squad and their commander, capturing another squad and an anti-tank gun, and likely saving the life of his wounded commanding officer.

The stage is set for Major Schultz to lead 4th Grenadier Platoon and 1st Panzer Platoon into Toujour, but it's going to be a tough nut to crack!

V/R,
Jack

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

KG Klink, France, Game 10

All,

Ambush at Abbeville, #3
0630 28 May 1940

Following the fighting in and around Flavion, KG Klink was briefly pulled out of the line to rest, refit, perform maintenance on their weapons, machines, and equipment, and bring in a few replacements.  They were actually parked outside the Dunkirk perimeter when they were called back to action; further south, German forces had forced a crossing on the Somme.  At 0600 27 on May, the Allies counterattacked the German bridgehead, striking the German 57th Infantry Division southwest of Abbeville, in an attempt to reach the encircled Allied troops at Dunkirk.

Unbeknownst to the Germans, the French
French 4e DCr (or 4th Division Cuirassee, 4th Armored Division) arrived in the battle area that evening.  The French force, heavily armed with Char B1, Somua S-35, and Hotchkiss light tanks, immediately set about reorganizing, preparing to attack on the morning of 28 May.


But
KG Klink moved all through the night in order to reach the battle area. arriving at approximately  0500 on 28 May.  The plan was for KG Klink to counterattack down the Blangy-Abbevile Road, hoping to flank the French 2e DLC (2nd Cavalry Division), maybe even cut all the way across and in behind the British 51st Highland Division, cutting off the British 1st Armored Division.  With that, KG Klink set off, passing through the German 217th Infantry Regiment, launching its attack down the Blangy-Abbeville Road.  KG Klink passed through Villers sur Mareuil, then Huppy, and were moving towards St Maxent en Vimeu, when they encountered trouble near the three (fictional) villages, Dujour, Deture, and Toujour, on the River Bleu.

The first fight saw Colonel Klink lead the 1st Grenadier Platoon, supported by Stugs, in the attack on Dujours.  Repulsed, they were reinforced by the 4th Grenadier Platoon and drove the French force back onto Hill 44.

The second fight saw 1st Lt Tausch, lead his 3rd Grenadier Platoon into the assault on Hill 34.  The attack stalled in several locations, but the Lieutenant's skillful leadership maneuvered his troops until they were able to unhinge the enemy's defensive line.

The third fight sees the Reconnaissance Company Commander, 1Lt Wehner, lead his men forward to seize the bridge over the River Bleu at Deture.

The overall area of operations, and that stupid north-seeking arrow at top right is incorrect, north is to far left...  The three villages are, from left to right: Dujour, Deture, and Toujour, and the hills are, from left to right: Hill 34, Hill 44, and Hill 54.  The River Bleu runs east-west down the center of the table.

My intent is to play a series of battles on a 6' x 4' layout, using small pieces, maybe 2' x 2' with 10mm troops.  I've gone back to my old standby, Ivan's "5Core Company Command."

The third fight is Lieutenant Wehner leading his Armored Reconnaissance Platoon and 1st Motorcycle Platoon forward into the village of Deture to seize the bridge over the River Bleu, with the red arrow showing the axis of attack.

The opposing forces, with Germans on left and French on right.  The French are completely made of Minifigs UK troops, while the German infantry (not pictured, but will arrive when the motorcyclists dismount) is Minifigs, but the motorcycles, armored vehicles, and  the command stand are Pendraken.

The German force:
CO: 1st Lieutenant Wehner (Iron Cross 2nd Class), Reconnaissance Company Commander
-Armored Reconnaissance Platoon Commander: 2nd Lt Weider (Sdkfz 222) 
Vehicle 2: Sgt Keck (Iron Cross 2nd Class) (Pz II)
Vehicle 3: LCpl Fasbender (Sdkfz 222)
Vehicle 4: Cpl Edst (Iron Cross 2nd Class) (Sdkfz 221)
-1st Motorcycle Platoon Leader: SSgt Dorn
1st Squad: SSgt Sachs
2nd Squad: Cpl Wilhelm
3rd Squad: Cpl Walon
2nd Squad, 2nd Motorcycle Platoon: Cpl Obst

The French force:
Commanding Officer
2 x MG Team
2 x Anti-Tank Gun
Four Rifle Squads

My interpretation of the operational area, with the villages Dujour (top left), Deture (center), and Toujour (far right) and hills 34 (bottom center left), 44 (top center left), and 54 (bottom center right, with the River Bleu running east-west (top to bottom) at center.

The Reconnaissance Company elements move south towards Deture, past the farmhouse on the right, and with Major Schultz leading 4th Grenadier Platoon up on the left.

The French defenders in Deture: they have their 1st Squad and MG Team 1 in the building at bottom center left, 2nd Squad in the building at bottom left (that squad is supposed to be in the building; the house comes off the building, but the stand doesn't fit!), 3rd Squad on the 2nd floor of the building at center top, with MG Team 2 on the 1st floor and the CO behind the building, ATG 1 near the hedges on the road at far right, ATG 2 and 4th Squad at top left.

The German Reconnaissance Company continues pressing towards the bridge (top left).

Almost to the bridge, with LCpl Fasbender's Sdkfz 222 almost there.

And up onto the bridge when...

The French ATG 1 (bottom right) opened fire on LCpl Fasbender's armored car!

The 25mm round ricocheted off the armored car's forward glacis (far left), suppressing Fasbender and his crew, as the French ATG 2 (in the treeline at bottom right, with their 4th Squad), fires on Sgt Keck's Panzer, missing!

The French, screaming 'La Marseillaise' at the top of their lungs, leave the cover of their building (bottom center) and dash out onto the bridge to assault LCpl Fasbender's armored car!

But Fasbender comes to, sprays a burst from his MP-40, and begins tossing hand grenades like a madman, chasing the French infantry away!  The French riflemen fell back to behind their previous station (far right), suppressed.

*That was quite a shocker!  The French should have had that easily, and blocking the bridge like that would have forced the German motorcycles to dismount and attack on foot over the very exposed bridge, while the German vehicles would have had to uncork themselves and find suitable support positions on the far (north) bank.

But Fasbender is in it, and he orders his driver forward, chasing after the retreating Frenchmen (center top, from explosion at bridge)!

But as he rounds the corner, the French MG Team 1 (bottom left) opens up on his armored car.

The rounds ricochet off harmlessly, and Fasbender begins pumping 20mm rounds into the house, causing the French machine gun team heavy casualties and suppressing the French 1st Squad next to them.

"Yes, seize the initiative," shouts Lt Weider, Fasbender's platoon commander, as he drives his vehicles straight up into the intersection.

Where the French MG Team 2 (center bottom on 1st floor, with the French 3rd Squad on the 2nd floor) immediately rattles off a long burst...

But it, too, fails to impress, and the German platoon commander begins pumping rounds into the building, suppressing the other French MG team.

As SSgt Dorn leads his motorcycle troopers up onto the bridge.  A bold move, to be sure...

From the 2nd floor, the French 3rd Squad (bottom right) opens fire on the densely packed bridge!

Well, that move was brave, bold, and stupid, all at the same time, and resulted in SSgt Sachs' 1st Squad being knocked out of the fight and SSgt Dorn's command section being pinned down (yellow bead).  SSgt Sachs would be out about a month, but would make a full recovery.

The rest of the Motorcycle Platoon dismounts.

The French CO moves to the west side of the road and sets about rallying his MG Team 1 and 2nd Squad; the MG team is good, but the rifle squad is still a bit shaky (up to pinned).

From the south, the French ATG )bottom center) there takes another shot at LCpl Fasbender's vehicle...

The round sails past, high, but close enough for Fasbender (bottom left) to feel the heat from it. He slews the turret left and returns fire, pumping out 20mm shells, pinning the French ATG 2 (top right).

Just as the second French ATG (bottom right, with 4th Squad) fires into the flank of Lt Weider's armored car!

BAM!!!  The platoon commander's vehicle was immobilized and the crew bails, and the explosion was enough to suppress the Motorcycle Platoon commander's team (red bead at far left).

Sgt Keck (Pz II, just above the house at bottom center) can't locate the French ATG, but knows it came from the tree line (top center), so he slews the turret and starts raking it, without effect.

Back on the 2nd floor, the French 3rd Squad still finds the bridge to be a target-rich environment, so they continue to fire as fast as they can reload, but with all the smoke pouring out of Lt Weider's vehicle their aim is thrown off and the fire is ineffective!

*That is quite amazing; normally, rifle teams in normal conditions fire with 1K 1S, but because the bridge is so packed, I was giving them 2K 2S, and they didn't get a single result.

German return fire pockmarks the stone walls, but does not affect the French 3rd Squad inside (top center).

LCpl Fasbender cuts his vehicle hard left and goes nose to nose, with the French ATG 2, firing as he goes, suppressing the gun crew and pinning the French 4th Squad.

Determined to get off the 'X,' Cpl Wilhelm, Squad Leader of 2nd Squad, leads Cpl Wallon and Cpl Obst's squads forward, where they run into the French 1st Squad!

But as they round the corner (top left), the French MG Team 1 opens fire, but they're afraid of hitting their own men (the French 1st Squad, the red bead at left, up against the building) and the rounds sail wide!

*Wow, I didn't realize how badly the French dice were until I was writing the batrep.  That MG was firing with 1K 2S (because of reacting with friendlies nearby, normally would be 2K 2S or 2K 3S), didn't touch a thing.

Lt Weider and his bailed out crew get back to the German side of the river (left), as Lt Wehner, the CO, finally manages to get over the congested bridge, where he rallies SSgt Dorn, the Motorcycle Platoon commander (the motorcycles at center top right).

No one is sure what Cpl Edst is doing with his vehicle waaaaaaay back there (far left), but Sgt Keck pushes his tank through the mess and pops out on the other side, right in the middle of the intersection (top right, from just in front of Cpl Edst's vehicle).

The Panzer II's 20mm gun pumps rounds into the French ATG 1, suppressing the crew (top right).

But just then, the French garrison on Hill 54 (bottom right) decides to get in the fight!  A mortar is moved into place atop the hill, and the three rifle squads come pouring down the hill towards the village.

*This was a random event.

The French CO rallies his 2nd Squad (yellow bead at center bottom), with an eye to aiding his 1st Squad (red bead at center left top).

The French CO then dashes out into the street to rally his 1st Squad, right in the face of the German infantry!

The gallant Frenchmen get back in the fight and begin firing into the German infantry...

Cpl Wilhelm's squad was suppressed (the lead German stand), and Cpl Wallon's squad (next in line, with Cpl Obst's behind them and SSgt Dorn's in last place) returns fire but it's too hectic a situation and it's ineffective.

And as the French 1st Squad (bottom left) is engaged in the fracas, their 2nd Squad charges out into the street to attack Sgt Keck's Panzer II!

But the German tank commander is cool and calm and responds in a methodical manner, eliminating his assailants!

*Wow, the French again fail a close assault on a vehicle with odds that favor them.  Not as good of odds as when the French 1st Squad charged LCpl Fasbender's vehicle, but favorable nonetheless.

The French are all in at this point, flinging human flesh at cold steel, fighting desperately to retain control of the bridge and their countrymen's homes!  The French 3rd Squad charges down off the 2nd floor, swarming LCpl Fasbender's armored car!

And for the second time today, LCpl Fasbender and his crew are able to fight off a French infantry assault, this time with deadly effect.

*Yeah, the Germans had the odds with them that time, as Fasbender was facing that direction and the French squad was in a pinned state.  Could have happened for the French, but it didn't.

And Fasbender pushes his vehicle further up the road, pounding the French ATG 2 and 4th Squad, but he's gotten too close and can't depress the gun far enough to target them!

*Just kidding, he just missed.  Lot of that going around today...

While, following in trace, Cpl Wallon maneuvers his squad forward, into close combat with the French MG Team 2, which is suppressed.

But the plucky French machine gunners (top right) are able to get the gun back into action and force the Germans back (bottom left, with red bead)!!!

*Two tied close combats in one game?  Wow.

At this point the Deture intersection is a scene straight out of Dante's Inferno; gunfire, explosions, ricocheting rounds, fire and smoke from Lt Weider's burning vehicle, broken and bloodied bodies and gear strewn about.  The CO, Lt Wehner, grabs Cpl Obst's squad and leads them forward into action against the French 1st Squad and their Commanding Officer (top center)!

The Germans are victorious, eliminating the French CO and 1st Squad!

Lt Wehner pushes Cpl Obst's squad forward to finish off the French MG Team 1, but the desperate Frenchmen open fire, suppressing the German riflemen!

But SSgt Dorn is Johnny on the spot, moving his command section up with a quickness.  They manage to get weapons into the windows and deliver effective fire, suppressing the enemy MG team, while also rallying Cpl Obst's squad back into the fight.

Although the same can't be said of Cpl Wallon's squad; the young German NCO stood on the bridge, pleading with his riflemen, but they kept on running, all the way back to...  Cpl Edst's armored car (top left)???

*I'm trying to figure out if I just forgot about this vehicle, or what???

And the French still have a platoon's worth of infantry coming down the hill, but, to be honest, it's too little, too late, and they're walking into a meatgrinder.  The French mortar team (bottom right) begins pounding the intersection with 81mm HE rounds...

SSgt Dorn's command team and Cpl Obst's squad are suppressed, and Lt Wehner's command group is pinned!  Maybe it's not too late; the fresh French infantry platoon dashes down the hill, hoping to get into contact with the roughed up German infantry on the east side of the intersection!

*If they can just get into close combat, they're pretty much guaranteed to roll up the German right, but the French are really hurting with all these losses, and not having a Commanding Officer.

LCpl Fasbender turns his vehicle and practically pokes his barrel into the window of the French MG Team 2 position.  The 20mm gun thunders, putting some casualties on the French machine gunners.

Lt Wehner (bottom center) is hurriedly rallying his troops back into fighting shape, but it's tough with all the mortar rounds dropping in.  Sgt Keck pushes his vehicle up the road (top right), with an eye towards ending this...

He pivots his tank, then opens fire, catching the French reinforcements in the open, but only one squad is suppressed.

Cpl Wilhelm pushes his squad into the house, close assaulting the French MG Team 1 (sorry about popping them up on top, but it didn't look right when I put them inside)...

Cpl Wilhelm's squad knocks out the MG team, then continues, charging straight into the first of the French reinforcements.

And another victory is notched on their belts...

Which is enough to convince the rest of the French reinforcements to surrender!

On the western side, the French gunners spike their guns and retreat south into Toujour!

Except the French mortar team on Hill 54.  The German force sets about policing up Deture, but doesn't have the men to spare to go and secure the hill, so the Frenchmen take the opportunity to get comfortable, dropping mortar rounds in and around the intersection for the rest of the day.

What a fight!  My apologies that things got so congested on the bridge and in the intersection, but that was kind of the point of this fight, to have some dirty, in-close, nitty-gritty street fighting at bayonet point.  And, despite it probably being a bit hard to follow, and looking pretty silly, it certainly worked.  The funny thing is, despite all those troops and vehicles crammed together right on top of each other, despite all the crazy close assaults, relatively speaking, there weren't that many casualties.  The Germans only lost one armored car and one rifle stand, while the French only lost four rifle stands and a machine gun team.  There was a whole lot of shooting, and even a couple close assaults, that had no effect in terms of removing troops from the table.

The CO, Lt Wehner, tipped his hat to LCpl Fasbender, Sgt Keck, and Cpl Wilhelm.  Fasbender was a madman, fighting off two enemy close assaults, and generally driving around wildly and shooting up the west side of town, while Sgt Keck was simply steady, right place at the right time, putting effective fire on enemy units to allow friendly forces to maneuver into and through the intersection.  Sgt Keck would be given a pat on the back, Fasbender would be meritoriously promoted to Corporal, but Cpl Wilhelm would be the only soldier decorated for this action.

Germans: ~20 KIA/WIA, 1 Sdfkz 222 damaged
French: ~45 KIA/WIA, 10 captured

Of the named characters, only one was hit:
SSgt Sachs, 1st Squad Leader, WIA, out for campaign

Cpl Wilhelm was decorated for first leading the dismounted platoon off the bridge and out of the kill zone when his platoon commander was suppressed, then leading the close assault that eliminated a machine gun team, a rifle squad, and captured two more rifle squads, breaking the back of the French defense in Deture.

Lt Wehner set about cleaning out the rest of Deture and organizing its defense, expecting an enemy counterattack at any time, but at this point all attention shifted back to the north, where Colonel Klink was busy scratching together a force to go and take Hill 44, securing the flank of his penetration towards Toujour.

V/R,
Jack