Sunday, 30 July 2017

An evening trip around Israel.

Wed 26th July.
After having a four week sabbatical from gaming due to holidays etc,we found ourselves at Comrade Bill's for a giant Arab/Israeli game taking place in the early sixties and consisted of a twelve by eight board encompassing the whole of Israel from the Golan Heights to the Sinai desert with the river Jordan bisecting the table.
Looking across the river Jordan towards Jerusalem with a wee bit poetic license


We were struggling for something to draw dice out off!
 A tremendous variety of armour and vehicles were on display including Centurions,M47 Pattons,T55s,AMX 10s,Shermans,Su122s,right down to Panzer 1Vs and Renault Chars.These were complemented by M3 halftracks and lorries complete with infantry.
M47 Pattons-The tank that Arnie Schwarzenegger drove when he done his national sevice.

Israeli armour on the prowl.

a couple of nice Assault guns.

Shermans with AMX10 turrets.

Two ultra modern T55(for this era).

Two Panzer 1vs(very dated for this era).

And as for these Renaults.

Ready to dole out retribution.
                                            The sides were divvied out with Bill taking the part of the Syrians Pz 1Vs and all,Mr Ray the Egyptians and Colin Jack the Jordanians.Bill Miller and myself having no political qualms( I hate all politicians)took the part of the Israelis .an easy game we thought until we were told no airpower-bummer!
Sleepy Jerusalem.
                                                We all took our allotted parts of the table and before we could say Shalom the Arabs all made their move albeit very cagey.
                                                  The Israelis had a few Kibbutzim strewn across the landscape and the one in the south soon had amorous intentions from Mr Ray's Egyptian armour showing their bullying side.This kibbutz didn't hold out for long due to having no antiarmour weapons apart from molotovs.Their defiance was whittled down before being overwhelmed by Egyptian paras and cleared out completely.
Kibbutz in the sun.
                                        Bill's makeshift armour slowly made their way across the river Jordan and engaged our Centurions flukely destroying one in the process.
Flattering to deceive.
                                         Colin's Jordanian Pattons made their way across the only bridge across the Jordan looking at times as though his tanks were in midair.
Who needs Moses when you can float.
                                            Our plan was to stall Colin and portion out the rest of our forces where they were neede to engage the invaders.
                                               Our artillery was being used to clean out Colin's Arab legion who were embedded in the ruined Arab village east of Jerusalem and were whittled down enough for my infantry who were waiting in Jerusalem for the opportunity to clear them out.
Jordanian bad guys.

Throwing a spanner in the works-literally!
                                               After my infantry became the new village owners Colin decided to shoot point blank at them with one of his tanks to no avail.My men responded by assaulting the tank and immobilising it for the rest of the game.A few more hits from our artillery confirmed this point.
Looking for targets.
                                              Mr Ray's forces were slowly(very) edging their way towards Jerusalem so infantry with support were diverted towards this probe and a big firefight between tanks and infantry ensued with the object of us stopping Ray's forces in their tracks but not leaving us enough forces due to casualties for a counterattack.Where is airpower when you need it?
Target rich environment.

Doesn't come without a cost.

Ray's forces slithering up.
                                                Bill's Syrians were slowly making their way across the river Jordan with the intent of overrunning our northern kibbutz but the lack of quality in his armour was beginning to show as most of his armour was of Second World War vintage which was what a lot of Syrian armour was like at the time,obviously given to them by the French.His infantry were ambling up towards the Jordan as though they were out for a Sunday stroll.
                                                  The game was developing into a very immobile game turning nto a slugmatch with our glorious defenders plugging the gaps where needed and not being able to fight in their usual manner.
Shoot to kill!

Single handedly holding them off.
   This was how the game progressed with our solitary Centurion gallantly holding off the Syrian advance.Colin's forces had found that the bridge over the river Jordan was maybe a bridge to far as his forces stagnated on the bridge.
                                                   In the south it just turned into a gunfight with the intention of being last man standing.
An awful lot of scrap metal.
Didn't get very far at the end.
 With the evening coming to a close we made a last ditch attempt to retake the southern kibbutz and destroy most of the Arab armour but the game like most of the Arab/Israeli wars developed into a stalemate probably from outside Russian/American pressure but also the final whistle.
Downtown Jerusalem 
                            The game ended literally in a score draw with everybody's forces heading back to the start lines to lick their wounds.
A nacky anti aircraft tank built on a AMX30 body.

                                  A great game with lots of great toys on display.This was a game that Colin had wanted to put on for a long time.Probably the amount of time he needed to put all these great toys together that were on display.


                               Bill Gilchrist-Syrians
                               Mr Ray-Egyptians
                               Colin Jack-Jordanians

                               Bill Miller and myself-the oft picked on Israelis.

                               The evening was proceeded once again by an amazing meal from the delightful Helena who must be under the impression that we all needed fattened up.

                                All scenery,scenario and toys provided by Colin Jack.

                               I provided the game cloth which was just a dust sheet spray painted .Lady Watson must be wondering why all her plants are turning green with brown dots.
                                                               See when I see you!.
                          See Bill's report on his blog.


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