AAR by: Neal Ulen & Scott Rowland
Decision at Elst CG Date 5 AAR
Here’s the historical situation:
Date: Sept 25, 1944 – Morning (note that CG date 4, Sept 24, Afternoon, was an Idle date for both sides)
Attacker: British – Elements of 214th Brigade, 43rd Wessex Division
Defender: Germans – Elements of Kampfgruppe Knaust
Decision at Elst covers actions centered on the town of Elst (Holland), located on “The Island” formed by the mighty Waal and Rhine rivers. The 43rd Wessex Division was tasked with the decisive operation of breaking through Kampfgruppe Knaust to relieve the embattled “Red Devils” in Arnhem to the north..
Note that CG date 4, Sept 24, Afternoon, was an Idle date for both sides. In an ASL campaign game when both combatants choose an “Idle” initiative for that date, the date is not played and both sides re-enter the Refit Phase. So onward to CG Date 5 after a double Refit Phase …
For the video AAR scroll to the bottom of the page.
The German SS and their supporting Volkgrenadier have been pushed back an relegated to a setup are in the tight confines of the center of Elst, holding on to the church and steeple locations at all costs.
Despite the resounding drubbing of their Shermans the previous afternoon, and their need to do routine maintenance, the British have regrouped and re-evaluated their situation. They bring no armor to bear this morning, but bring as many infantry as they can muster, and OBA smoke to mask their final assault on Elst.
Early on it doesn’t look good for the Germans, their harassing HMG in the steeple is under immediate heavy fire and units there are quickly suppressed. British infantry creep forward through the grain and city streets and prepare for the their supporting smoke to fall from the sky.
The smoke and artillery begin fall and the British swarm into Elst proper.
Just on the fringe of falling artillery, close combat rages between the SS and Brits, with Major Souper leading the charge. German armor sit on the edge of the village reluctant to get too close to the action … trying to support their infantry from afar..
Major Souper sends one of this officers and a platoon across the street through the cover of smoke. Their goal: secure the north side of the road. The lieutenant finds Germans SS huddled in the cover of building, have no line of sight to their British attackers they just wait for the inevitable. He directs the platoon to jump into close combat and begin securing buildings.
The Germans know they are being pressed hard and pull their panzer into the action for support on the British right and left flanks.
Major Souper is puzzled by the lack of incoming German artillery, but quickly brushes it aside and calls it a blessing.
The British onslaught cannot be stopped. They’ve pushed the Germans across the street in Elst. Their only bastion remaining is the church, as HE and smoke beging to rain down on them. Panzers reposition tighter around the church in support.
The southern flank is another British failure, just like their northern flank early in the campaign game. But it’s no matter for the British. Victory is in sight, and after they secure the church and roads to Arnhem/Nijmegen they can push north in support of the Red Devils … but that will have to wait until later in the day.
This video below represents Decision at Elst campaign game date 5 (Sept 25, 1944 Morning) described above … which is part 4 of 5.
Original Words/Video Content © 2020-2022, Neal Ulen. All rights reserved.
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