“Fortes Fortuna Juvat”: The Jutland Dragoons at Wulfsfelde, 1984

Fortes Fortuna Juvat

‘Fortune Favours The Brave’ (Motto of the Jutland Dragoon Regiment)

The Warsaw Pact’s Northern Front crossed the Inter-German Border yesterday, rapidly breaking through the forward units of the German Schleswig-Holstein Territorial Command and surrounding the 71st Heimatschütz Regiment in Lübeck.  The 81st Heimatschütz Regiment however, has been annihilated and the survivors of the mechanised 51st and 61st Heimatschütz Brigades are falling back to the main line of resistance on the Kiel Canal.  Scattered German Home Guard units meanwhile, are mounting ambushes everywhere, making the enemy pay for every inch of German soil.

The Heimatschützen’s sacrifice has allowed time for NATO’s LANDJUT Command to crystallise a main line of resistance along the Kiel Canal.  The German 6th Panzergrenadier Division is on the right, with its flank resting on the Elbe and covering the main approaches to Hamburg.  The Danish Jutland Division is on the left, holding a wide swathe of land across Schleswig-Holstein, with its left flank resting on the Baltic and the British 1st Infantry Brigade is in reserve.  The line is spread very thin, though gaps are being covered by the ubiquitous local Heimatschütz platoons and the line should soon be strengthened by the arrival of the US 9th Motorized Infantry Division, which is presently unloading at Hamburg.

However, not everyone is safely behind the Kiel Canal… Danish and German reconnaissance forces are east of the canal, performing reconnaissance and covering the withdrawal of the surviving German Territorial units and refugees from the east.  Among these is the 1st Battalion of the Danish Jutland Dragoon Regiment, whose ‘A’ Squadron is presently in camouflaged positions near the town of Wulfsfelde, approximately half-way between the IGB and the Kiel Canal.  Major Simmondsson, commanding ‘A’ Squadron, has the following forces at his disposal:

‘A’ Squadron, 1st Jutland Dragoons
1x Commander
1x M113 Command Vehicle
3x M41 Light Tanks
3x Infantry (1 with Carl-Gustav MAW & the rest with M72 LAW)
1x M113 APC
3x Infantry (1 with Carl-Gustav MAW & the rest with M72 LAW)
3x Land Rover (armed with MG3)
1x 81mm Mortar
1x M125 81mm Mortar Carrier

Attached from the Armour School
1x Prototype M41 DK-1 Light Tank

Attached from the 33rd Artillery Battalion
1x Forward Observer
1x M113 APC
Battery of 3x 155mm Guns in Direct Support (no General Support – they’re busy)

Attached from the 14th Air Defence Artillery Battalion
1x Hamlet (Redeye) SAM Team
1x Land Rover

Attached from the Royal Danish Air Force
1x Forward Air Controller
1x Land Rover
On a successful roll for Close Air Support, roll again to see what arrives: 1-2 = German Alpha-Jet, 3 = British Jaguar GR1, 4-7 = Danish Draken, 8-9 = Danish F-16, 10 = US A-10 Thunderbolt. All are armed with mixed bombs and rockets.

Attached from the German 61st Army Aviation Battalion
1x Command Bo-105 PAH-1 Anti-Tank Helicopter (HOT)
1x Bo-105 PAH-1 Anti-Tank Helicopter (HOT)

There are also some German units locally that are initially not under the command of Major Simmondsson. They start the scenario in the locations detailed and only come under Danish control once they have been contacted by the enemy (they will hold fire until spotted or until an enemy unit comes within ambush range):

Platoon, Jäger Battalion 512
This unit is holding a farm and its associated bridge over the stream to the north of Wulfsfelde, on the Jutland Dragoons’ left flank.
1x Command Jäger
2x Jäger (1 with Panzerfaust 44)
1x M113G APC

Platoon, Heimatschütz Company 1131
These men are preparing to defend their homes in Wulfsfelde and are in ambush positions on the eastern edge of the town.
1x Command Jäger
2x Jäger (1 with Panzerfaust 44)

Rapidly approaching from the east are the leading elements of the East German 28th Motorisierte-Schützen Regiment Wilhelm Florin , which is the spearhead unit for the 8th Motorisierte-Schützen Division Kurt Bürger.  At the tip of the spear is the 28th Regiment’s Reconnaissance Group, led by Major Marx:

Regimental Reconnaissance Company
1x Commander
4x Motor Rifles Infantry (2 with RPG-7 & the rest with RPG-18)
3x BTR-60 PB APC
2x BRDM-2 Armoured Car
1x T-55A Medium Tank
1x BRDM-2 RKh NBC Recce Vehicle

Attached Elements, Regimental Anti-Aircraft Company
1x 9K31 Strela 1 (SA-9 ‘Gaskin’) SAM Vehicle
1x ZSU-23-4 Shilka Anti-Aircraft Vehicle

Attached Elements, Regimental Anti-Tank Company
1x 9P148 Konkurs (BRDM-2 with AT-5 ‘Spandrel’) Anti-Tank Vehicle

Attached Elements, Regimental Pioneer Company
3x Pioneers (1 with RPG-7 & 1 with Flamethrower)
1x BTR-152 APC
1x MTU-54 Bridgelayer
1x IMR Engineer Vehicle

Attached Elements, Regimental Artillery Battalion
1x Forward Observer
1x 1V18 Artillery Command & Observation Vehicle
3x 2S1 Gvozdika SP 122mm Howitzers in Direct Support

Attached Elements, Frontal Aviation
1x Forward Air Controller
1x BTR-60 R975 Forward Air Control Vehicle
On a successful roll for Close Air Support, roll again to see what arrives: 1-2 = MiG-17 ‘Fresco’, 3-4 = MiG-21 ‘Fishbed’, 5-7 = Su-17 ‘Fitter’, 8-9 = MiG-27 ‘Flogger D’ & 10 = Su-25 ‘Frogfoot. All are armed with mixed bombs and rockets.

The above elements are all under the command of the Reconnaissance Company and will all arrive in column on the eastern road, with the Reconnaissance Company leading. The following elements will arrive in column from Turn 4:

Motor Rifle Company
1x Commander
1x 9K32 Strela 2 (SA-7 ‘Grail’) SAM Team
9x Motor Rifle Infantry (3 with RPG-7 & the rest with RPG-18)
4x BTR-60 PB APC

Tank Company
1x Command T-55A Medium Tank
5x T-55A Medium Tank

Above: Elements of Major Marx’s Recce Group avoid the town of Wulfsfelde and head north along the riverbank, before turning west onto a farm track.  The bridges along this track have already been assessed by covert pre-war reconnaissance as being capable of taking tanks.

Above: Behind them, the sound of explosions and gunfire announces the presence of West German Heimatschützen in Wulfsfelde.  A BRDM-2 scout car goes up in flames as a Panzerfaust finds its mark.

Above: In Wulfsfelde, elements of the Recce Company dismount to deal with the uppity locals, but soon get the worst of it!  A dismounted assault fails and they withdraw from the village, covered by their BTR-60.  Let the artillery deal with them…

Above: On a wooded knoll approximately 1km north of the town, marked as Der Offensichtlicher Hügel on their maps, a Danish patrol, consisting of an M41 light tank, an infantry section in Land Rovers and an artillery FOO, keep watch over the surrounding countryside.

Above:  The rest of the Dragoon Squadron is playing it safe; setting up a thin screen covering the road bridge west of Wulfsfelde.  On their left, a West German detachment from Jäger Battalion 512 is guarding a secondary bridge.

Above: A platoon of mechanised Dragoons dismount from their M113 APC and takes cover along a hedgerow, protecting the attached RDAF Forward Air Controller and his Land Rover.

Above:  With the skirmish going on in Wulfsfelde, the HQ and supporting elements of the East German recce group start to bunch up at the eastern bridge.  This is far too tempting a target to ignore and 155mm rounds from the Danish 33rd Field Artillery Battalion are soon causing havoc among the bunched AFVs.

Above:  North of Wulfsfelde, the leading elements of the East German recce group follow the farm track around Offensichtlicher Hügel and make a bee-line for the West German-held farm and its associated bridge.  However, the Danes have seen them and call up some support, courtesy of the West German 61st Aviation Battalion.

Above:  From his concealed position on Offensichtlicher Hügel, the forward M41 tank commander spots a column of East German BTR-60s crossing his front.  His orders are to remain concealed and report enemy strength and direction, but temptation gets the better of him and he orders his gunners to engage with 76mm AP!

Above:  The 76mm gun of the M41 might be no match for post-WW2 tanks, but it’s more than capable of taking on the paper-thin armour of a BTR-60 and the head of the column bursts into flames.  An unfortunate section of East German infantry are instantly immolated, but two sections manage to bail  out in various states of disorder.

Having conducted a successful ambush, the M41 commander smugly reverses out of his position, leaving the FOO and Land Rover-borne Dragoons to face the inevitable return fire on the hill top…

Above:  In the farm lane north of the Offensichtlicher Hügel, the leading BRDM-2 is spotted by another M41 and is rapidly dispatched by the alert gunner.  Once again, the puny 76mm gun of the M41 ismore than a match for Warpac light armour.

Above:  Buzzing in at hedge-top height, a pair of West German Bo-105 PAH-1 anti-tank helicopters moves up on the Danish left flank and passes the burning BRDM patrol to engage the rest of the East German reconnaissance element.  Strangely, they take machine-gun fire during their approach, but from where and from whom?!  Thankfully the hostile fire has no effect and they move forward to engage the Ossies…

Above:  Using the flank of Offensichtlicher Hügel to mask their approach, the helicopters manage to avoid any serious enemy fire as they loose off their HOT missiles, destroying a BRDM and a BTR-60 in the farm lane.  Luck is with the East German recce infantry, as they successfully bail out of their burning BTR-60.

Above: The momentum of the advance is rapidly being lost as the German Home Guard continue to resist in Wulfsfelde and the East German Motor Rifle company frantically seeks cover in the face of enemy artillery, helicopters and tanks.  Major Marx screams at his AA detachment commander to find a better position and take out the enemy helicopters!

Above: “What the £@%&??!!”  The smug grin is wiped off the M41 commander’s face as an anti-tank rocket screams past his reversing tank… “That came from the rear!  Gunner traverse left!  Enemy infantry to the rear!  Load HE!  Zero this is One, we are taking enemy anti-tank rocket fire from the rear – somewhere in the vicinity of the farm, over.”

“Zero, this is One!  We are being engaged by the West Germans at the farm!  They’re £@%&ing Spetz………..”  The Danes are shocked by a sudden explosion on their left and look round to see an M41 turret cartwheeling horribly through the air, atop a column of smoke and flame…

Above:  A platoon from the elite East German 40th Air Assault Battalion Willi Sanger (regarded by all as the very best of Warpac special forces) has infiltrated NATO lines using uniforms and M113Gs captured from the Schleswig-Holstein Territorial Command and has taken up position at the farm in order to keep the bridge (which had already been assessed as good for tanks by members of a ‘student exchange’ some years previously) open for the East German advance.  However, the arrival of the West German helicopters and Danish M41s required them to play their hand early; they’ve now been rumbled by the Danes and their mechanised recce relief force is now burning in the lane…

Major Simmondson acts swiftly, calling in an RDAF Draken to strike the farm!  Dodging fire from SA-9 SAMs and ZSU-23-4 Shilka AAA, the Draken screeches in and releases 500-pound bombs onto the farm, eliminating two of the three East German special forces teams.  However, one team (armed with Panzerfaust 44) and the M113G remain.

Above: An M41 moves forward to engage the surviving special forces, but is disordered by Panzerfaust fire from the farm.  Meanwhile, the East German artillery have finally woken up and concentrated 122mm fire is plastering the Offensichtlicher Hügel.

Above: The prototype M41 DK-1 detachment ends the argument with the East German special forces, destroying their looted M113G APC with a shot to the rear.

Above: With East German units deploying into battle formation in the distance, the West German helicopters fire again, destroying a T-55.

Above: Undeterred by mounting casualties, the East Germans shake out into battle formation.

Above: At last, the East German air defence units start to find their form and the helicopters suffer a crisis of confidence, scuttling behind the lee of the Offensichtlicher Hügel to avoid concentrated SA-7, SA-9 and Shilka fire.

Above: Determined to winkle out the Danish OP on the Offensichtlicher Hügel, a surviving East German recce platoon movesup onto the high ground.  Somewhat unwisely, the Danish FOO decides to stay in position and call his guns down onto the approaching East German infantry… But for the first time his frantic calls go unanswered and the East Germans launch a close assault on his position!  Somewhat astonishingly, the FOO survives by the skin of his teeth, but the East Germans now have a magnificent view of the Danish positions beyond the hill.

Above: Led by the tank company, the East Germans cross the river and advance on the Danish position.

Above: The East German infantry decide  to break with doctrine and conduct the attack dismounted… Anything is better than going to war in a BTR-60…

Above: Back at Wulfsfelde, the East German pioneer detachment finally winkles the Home Guardsmen out in bitter house-to-house fighting.

Above: The RDAF Drakens return for a strike on the East German armour, but this time are driven off by a wall of AAA and SAMs.

Above: The light Dragoon patrols on Offensichtlicher Hügel are still calling down artillery and air support, but are under intense pressure from East German infantry and artillery and can hold on no longer.

Above: After a sterling effort in blunting the enemy advance, the West German helicopters are out of ammunition and must return to base.

Above: With the East German attack now in full flood and more coming up behind, Major Simondsson decides that discretion is the better part of valour and orders his squadron to disengage.

Above: Having given the East Germans a bloody nose for the loss of a section of M41s, the Dragoons disengage.

The game was played with Battlefront: First Echelon, our under-development Cold War variant of Battlefront: WWII rules by Fire & Fury Games.  In BF:FE and BF:WWII, each vehicle or heavy weapon represents 2-3 actual items, while a stand of infantry represents a Section/Squad.

The models used are all from my own collection.  The Danish infantry and vehicles are all by QRF with all modelling and conversions by my good friend Martin Small (the infantry are actually QRF Israelis).  The infantry were painted by Martin, but the vehicles were painted by me.  The Draken is a Tamiya 1/100th kit.  The West German infantry are by QRF, while the M113G and Bo-105 PAH-1s are by Flames of War/Team Yankee.

Most of the Warpac vehicles are by Skytrex, though the MTU-54, IMR and ZSU-23-4 are by QRF.  The East German infantry are by Flames of War/Team Yankee.

This entry was posted in 15mm Figures, Battlefront: First Echelon, Battlefront: WW2, Battlefront: WWII Scenarios, Cold War, Games, Scenarios. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to “Fortes Fortuna Juvat”: The Jutland Dragoons at Wulfsfelde, 1984

  1. Fincas Khalmoril says:

    Awesome AAR! Really well pictured. I did enjoy reading it, especially since it involved the successive destruction of places I’ve been to several times. 🙂

    • jemima_fawr says:

      LOL! Any association with person or places living or dead is entirely coincidental and no animals were harmed in the making of this wargame…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.