Welcome to Platoon Forward!

Welcome to the site where the story of the battle is as important as the battle itself. Here we will focus on men thrust into extraordinary situations of life and death. They must lead other men with duty and honor to meet their countries objectives. Some will be blessed with great skill, some will carry great shortcomings. No matter what nation, no matter what war, no matter what theater, they are all called to move their Platoon or Squadron forward!

These are their individual stories as played out using my various campaign rules . Hopefully these stories will entertain and inspire you to use your own troops, airmen and sailors to accomplish your own great heroics.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Patrol along the Kokoda Trail

This is the 3rd battle with my aussie platoon. Lt "Pinky" Seibert was wounded last battle and has not been replaced. He will miss 2 battles. This platoon has poor leadership with 2 Gr I leaders and the platoon sgt a gr II [McDonnel] who was just promoted to Sgt after last battle. The company commander has decided to send the Sergant Major out with 2 sections on a combat patrol.

Sergant Major, your map is below. You start at the bottom edge and must recce the whole board. Come up with your route and order of march. You have 2 sections plus a 2in mortar.
See what the Japs are up too and good God man, be careful!
Sgt Maj Peters Gr IV
Cpl Tommy Higgins 1st section Gr I
Cpl Jeffrey Stokes 2nd section Gr I hesitant commander

Sgt Major decided to start along the left of the board, skiriting the jungle and make a clockwise circle of the board going around the rocky hill. 2nd section would lead and when contact was made he would move up to help Stokes who was the weaker of the 2 weak leaders.

Map depression is left and
rocky hill is left center
Cpl Higgins was glad to be on a mission with the Sergant Major. Hopefully he would see what an idiot Stokes was and how deserving he himself was of another stripe. Higgins was sadden when 3rd section's Cpl McDonnel was promoted to platoon Sgt. McDonnel was good, just not as good as himself. He was out to prove it to the Sergant Major today.
Unfortunalty for our heros, the japanese [also on patrol] saw them first and moved to set up an ambush...
Sgt Maj Peters sees Japs on the hill
and past the jungle
The Sgt Maj called out Japs on the hill and past the jungle! He ordered Higgins to take his section into the jungle and Stokes into the Kunai. 2in mortar was to start pounding the hill.
Japanese knee mortars in
my version of bamboo
Japanese squad on hill
Higgins got his folks into the jungle and started firing at advancing infantry. Unfortunatly a LMG from the hill and mortars pounded his position and the men waivered.
Meanwhile a second LMG opened up on first section from the hill.
Japanese advance on Cpl Higgins
Cpl Higgins had to pull back into a depression before they were overun!! Why wouldn't these bastards rally!!!! [ It is tough to be a Gr I leader]
Meanwhile, 2nd section had pinned the LMG on the hill. Sgt Maj screamed, up and at em boys!
Up and at em boys!
The aussies took out the LMG but before they did a final burst caught 2 men in the stomachs. Sgt Maj Peters hit the ground knowing it was bad. An IV was started; he refused morphine knowing he was the only competent leader but then he lapsed into uncounsouness. Cpl Stokes was at a loss at what to do next. [The hesitant commander card came up at the worst times] They had lost 4 of the section taking out the LMG. There was still a jap squad on the hill. They traded shots and even repeled an assault. Stokes could not get them rallied to charge and could not un hesitate enough to have them retreat.
Cpl Higgins in the depression
Meanwhile, Cpl Higgins could not get his section to rally! The japanese gathered for another charge.
The final charge
2in mortar shells try to halt the advance
12 Japanese led by a sword wielding NCO moved into the depression.Cpl Higgins managed to get extricate his folks without losing a man. He then went back and picked up the the 2in mortar and quitely snuck away.
Casualty wise it was a closer battle with the aussies sustaining 14 and the Japanese 8. Clearly the Aussies were driven from the field. With 2 poor leaders they could not rally their folks. 2nd section finally got away when Cpl Stokes was wounded. Had the Sgt Maj not been wounded it might have proved a very differnet game.
Japanese forces:
1 gr III leader 1 gr II leader 1 gr I leader
2 squads with LMGs
1 knee mortar squad [3 mortars and 6 riflemen]
Enter north edge of board on patrol Randomly determine edge and turn of entry
Cpl Higgins was unsuccessful in having Cpl Stokes removed from the platoon and he had a 50/50 chance of becoming a Gr II leader and missed. Sgt Major Peters lived but was invalided home to australia. The new Sgt Major is Joe Cook and he already dislikes the platoon. Lt Seibert is working at battalion was convilesing and had done some good stuff for the company that has earned the gratitute of the company commander. Cpl Stokes is out for 2 battles and Pvt Collins will have the section Gr I no hesitant commander card.
Can Sgt McDonnel whip these guys into shape? Will Cpl Higgins ever earn his Gr II?

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