God Wills It - A HPM Roman AAR - Part 18

Author: ElvenAshwin
Published: 2017-02-20

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God Wills It - A HPM Roman AAR

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God Wills It - A HPM Roman AAR - Part 17

Images: 89, author: ElvenAshwin, published: 2017-02-13

They land on the beaches, miles from home.
They trek across the sands, to a destination unknown
They fight with all their heart, and head boldly into fire.
Dying in the name of God and Empire.

As battles rage on in Algeria as the British army threatens to reach major Algerian population centers, and fighting occurs across the Libyan Border as Roman troops attempt to contain the British advance, and British troops cross into Ethiopia, the war has reached its climax.

The endless armies of the British army have proved exhaustive. The entire Spanish army is decimated, and the Middle-East has been conquered.

These dark times call for strong hands, and it is thus with the greatest of joy that we celebrate the awe-inspiring and breathless reign of Consul Alescio, the Dictator for Life.
As the battle in the heart of Algeria turns in our tide, the Consul receives shocking news. The Algerians have chosen to capitulate to the British armies, in return for a ceasefire across Algerian territory and the withdrawal of all British troops. The news ends the Battle for Algeria, and several angry young men decide to rape and pillage on their way out.

Granted, they always tend to rape and pillage on the way out, so this isn't new.
MAXIMUM. EFFICIENCY

The Consul announces the raising of tariffs on foreign goods, in order to encourage people to consume local goods and earn some revenue for the state, so as to offset the huge cost of the military. When informed that protectionism will ultimately harm the country, and the Consul should really just leave the war already, the Consul has that really brave guy informing him executed.

How dare he think he knows economics, the Consul has the peoples vote! And that makes him qualified, or something! DEMOCRACY
The Battle of Timimoun ends still as a net gain for the Roman Army. Our Algerian forces are relocated to the Libyan front, with plans to move them to the new frontier for the war in Ethiopia.

In fact, this war is undoubtedly going extraordinarily well. You see, whilst the British did knock out one of our regional allies, and that would seem to be a bad thing, you are committing the logical fallacy of thinking. In reality, because the Algerians surrendered, the British can no longer cross into Libya from West Africa, allowing us to cut our losses over the worthless land there (I mean, it's not like there's any *oil* in West Africa) and focus on defending prime Egyptian desert in the east.
Victory in Libya

The British Army in Libya is entirely annihilated in the Battle of Ghat, and all remaining hostile forces proceed to withdraw over the Algerian border and return to West Africa. With this new development, we can begin focusing on the war in Ethiopia. The stunning defeat of hordes of British armies in Libya reaches Italian shores, as the Romans now celebrate the Consul's wise decision in sending bigger armies to fight smaller armies. Truly only a military genius such as himself can play such 4D chess.
This is what all that marching in Basic Military Training was for, boys - marching is 90% of war, dying unglamorously is 9% of war, and dying gloriously only to have the Consul credited for your victory is the remaining 1%.

So yeah march over half to continent so you can die over th- BRING GLORY TO THE NATION
Our Colonial Allies

The Ethiopian Republic has been leading a brave and daring defense in our absence from the Eastern Front. Guerrilla attacks on British camps, hiding in holes in the mountains and choosing death over surrender always, the People of the Roman Republic will always hold the Ethiopians dear in our hearts

(This is called foreshadowing for the next episode)
We thank the British High Command for their quick delivery for 32 000 Prisoners of War.

4/5 stars, faster than the Roman Postal Service, but some of my POWs were damaged during delivery.
Yeah! Keep fighting there, we really don't care! Did I mention that we should all Hail the Consul? Hail the Consul! Hail the Consul!
THE HUNGARIANS HAVE ARRIVED

WITH THEIR 72 000 MEN, WE CAN TURN THIS WAR AROUND!

Not that we weren't already winning, I just mean winning a little harder. If anyone tells you we are un-winning, report them to your Friendly Neighborhood Policeman who will promptly un-birth them for public safety. Remember, only you can stop liberals (this message brought to you by Smokey the Fascist Italian Bear)
Roman Propaganda Poster, circa 1921.
Roman Propaganda Poster, circa 1922.

(I may have been slightly drunk writing this AAR, but hitler smokey is probably still funny when I'm sober)
The Massacre of Aksum

Outrageous reports have emerged from the Ethiopian Republic that a massive British army has massacred our Ethiopian brethren wholesale. This won't be allowed to stand, only we're allowed to do that.
More troops are ordered to head to the port in Dumyat, Egypt.

Whilst some alarmist enemies of the state claim that this implies that the war is dragging on for too long, we would like to point out that many soldiers may actually enjoy a vacation in Egypt. They even get to march past the pyramids! Our soldiers, believe me, I know many, enjoy fighting wars of imperialism in foreign soil. There's just some aspect of MAKING ROME GREAT AGAIN that gets their blood pumping.
We decide to reroute the Navy to directly land in Ethiopia.

The Ethiopian forces have quickly evacuated the core of their country and are now largely waiting for death. Help needs to arrive soon, before the British armies overrun the Republic and put an end to the freedom and rights that we have helped guarantee, back when we peacefully established the Ethiopian Republic as a progressive cause to all of Europe. Truly, our Consul is the leading liberal in Europe, the leader of a shining beacon of hope in a sea of tyrants, as Molinelli once said.

If he were alive today, you can be certain he would be happy about our Consul's so total victory over the opposition that he can rule by the people without an election. This is truly the best of times.
The slow decline

Tariffs are raised by 2% once again in attempt to balance the budget as the previous one heads into deficit. The Consul announces that this is due to the rich stockpiling goods, and economic warfare from the illiberal autocracies across Europe. We do not know what the causal link is, but we are sure the Consul knows what he's talking about.

Meanwhile, military wages are significantly reduced, alongside education funding, the bureaucracy and social expenditure. With taxes as high as they can be, austerity policies in place and tariffs reaching dangerous levels, we are still heading rapidly towards bankruptcy.

The Consul, however, rejects the pacifistic and nation-hating concept of surrendering to the British over something as paltry as bankruptcy. In a rousing speech, he urges the people of the Republic to "ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country". Well, actually, he said "quit whining about welfare, join the army instead", but that's what he means. You see, as he always tells it like it is and isn't as polished as some of the oligarch's puppets, sometimes what he says is different from what he means. What he means is usually whatever is most convenient for you personally.
The State of the War

The war has taken a minor toll on the lives of everyday Romans, mainly due to changes in expenditure and taxes. However, the British are now closer than ever to defeat. The Consul aims to borrow funds until we defeat the British, drive them out of the Middle-East, invade Persia, India, the Congo and then destroy the British Empire once and for all!

Hail victory!
The War in Libya is definitely over.
There are just some minor skirmishes over small forces in the region.
The Arabs decide to withdraw from the Roman Common Market. We... don't really know why, but we think they're pissed because we left our protectorates out to dry.
You little fuckers.
This time it's personal.
Nobody takes a colony from the Roman Republic.
We are a nation built on the exploitation of native manpower and we will die a nation of exploitative native manpower before cede any goddamn land to the British.
The Great Gambit

The Savoyard Republic, a democracy set up by the corrupt Consul Primo, has continued to exist as a democratic state despite the massive Roman Front presence there. A few politicians propose leading a coup to oust the present President and Prime Minister of the Republic, installing a pro-Roman fascist dictatorship and spreading the People's Revolution.

Should we choose to not support them, they will go ahead with their plot, but will likely fail. At such an act, the Savoyard Republic would definitely secede from the Roman Republic, and rush into the arms of protective European powers.
For the year since the People's Revolution in Rome, the situation of the democratic Savoyard Republic has been extraordinarily awkward. Whilst their people remain in chains to the oligarchy, ours have been liberated. The Consul decrees that we must do everything we can to liberate the People of the world!
The Republic Falls

On November 5 1921, the Parliament of Savoy is stormed by local Roman Front paramilitaries, which quickly massacre the sitting MPs and seize control of the state. The President flees from the capital, but is captured and executed, briefly before he could exit via the French border. The Prime Minister flees into the Roman Republic, hoping to cross into Swiss or Austrian territory and then to Germany for protection. He is captured by Roman troops and sent back to Savoy, where he is promptly executed.

Quickly, provincial governments in Savoy swear loyalty to their new fascist dictator, Roman Front veteran Misaele Furio. Furio proclaims himself both President and Prime Minister of the Republic, and calls himself the Praetor of Savoy, in the grand tradition of using random Roman titles for unrelated offices.
THERE IS NO WAR IN LIBYA, THERE IS NO WAR IN LIBYA
The Stage is Set

In November of 1921, the beginning of the end of the British Empire arrives. Our troops take up positions in Suakin and Hayya province, awaiting the British advance from Ethiopia.
You have made a bad choice, Mr Windsor

The British Army is ambushed and trapped in the mountains of Suakin, where they face a highly entrenched enemy with narrow spaces to fight. The Battle of Suakin begins, and news quickly begins to spread of the grand victory at our fingertips.
Yup, the war ended a long time ago.
Libya is extraordinarily safe. What are those Roman troops being deployed to Libya, you ask? Well they're just quelling minor disputes between individuals in Libya.
News reports emerge of our smashing victories in Libya, stemming the flow of British troops from Algeria as well as stopping an attempted beach landing..

This is not inconsistent with there being no war in Libya.
The Misratah Landings fail miserably. About a hundred British troops survive the landing and flee deeper into Roman Libya. We intend to pursue them and take them prisoner.
Here lies Ethiopia, with all their mobilized reserves dead in the fields. Their sacrifice for a city that none of them will ever see in their lives was admirable.

Now that their bodies have served their purposes of draining British ammunition and resolve, we can begin the actual war in East Africa.
The British troops, surrounded on all sides, begin to scatter chaotically. As they rush through the valleys of Suakin, they run straight into awaiting Roman firing squads. Those who attempt to hide in the jungle are weeded out and murdered in their attempts to surrender. A few large masses are trapped in valleys filled with choking chlorine gas, having left their supplies behind.

At every turn their comrades fall. Lines after lines of British troops raising the white flag of surrender are shot, gassed or bayoneted. Following the battle, Roman troops search among the bodies, shooting a few for good measure, to ensure that any playing dead do not escape our wrath.

Several distinguished officers have their medals or uniforms stripped from their bodies and sent back to Rome as a gift for the Consul. News of the overwhelming victory against the vicious imperialists, and the grand defense of Suakin against those murderous marauders by our righteous forces, spread through the Republic.

News of the entire loss of the British Army in Suakin reaches the British War Cabinet, who petition the Consul about the numbers of prisoners taken. The Consul simply tells them that we have none.
The War in Libya is now over. As it always was.

A few British-held towns in the southernmost tip of the protectorate are quickly overwhelmed and re-conquered. Now, we can focus all our troops on East Africa.

The Consul outlines his new strategy, now that we are on the offensive. After liberating the Ethiopian Republic and containing the British advance in Aden, we are to advance forth through the Congo and seize territory all the way to the Cape Colony. After this is achieved, we are to begin our push through Nigeria and take back ivory coast and any remaining British colonies. With Africa under our domination, we will demand the British retreat from the continent, or commence an invasion of the Raj through the re-conquest of the Middle-East and the occupation of Persia.

The Empire will fall and the Republic will rise! The Consul proclaims, to the glee of the masses yearning to die for him in the fields, sands and jungles of unknown continents, that this war will go on forever, for as long as it takes for the British Empire to collapse to their feets and beg for our mercy.
Meanwhile, the order is given in the occupied Lebanese protectorate for local sympathizers to overthrow the established Republic and install a Lebanese General as dictator. The Roman Governor in charge of Lebanon approves under orders from the Consul's office.
But... you're still in my sphere?
Just in the event that you're actually mad.
The war, against an enemy with triple the military size as ours, is going strongly in our favor. The British are bound to capitulate any moment now. The Roman Times reports on news that the British people are in fact rising up in London in the defense of the Roman Republic, and against the war. They cite their source as "many people are telling us" and that they're "great, good people" and "fantastic people".
Meanwhile, the Times condemns many underground news papers for selling obvious "fake news", as it is termed, which doubt the word set out by the Consul. Nobody should question his authority and legitimacy, as he is the leader of the Republic and deserves such respect.
More British troops land in Ethiopia as the war rages on. The remaining major divisions avoid combat in mountainous regions and have spilled forth into Sudan. It is clear that the Romans now need to attempt attacks on the British positions.
The Battle of Kassala kicks off as an army led by General Fabio Filangieri (unrelated to the late Nicola Filangieri) attacks the British. An army in Akordat waits, pending news that another nearby British division joins the battle.
Reports emerge that one of our fleets that was supposed to arrive in February in Ethiopia, carrying 30 000 young Italian men, never arrived. As wives await news on the locations of their loved ones, the Consul also receives word from the Suez Republic that a British fleet sunk what appeared to be a defenseless Roman transport fleet off the Palestinian Coast, possibly in retaliation for what occurred in Suakin.

Bodies begin to wash up in Israel and the Suez Republic, where they are quickly disposed of. Waiting family members are informed that the forces have arrived in Ethiopia, but may be stationed there for several years for peacekeeping after the war. The Consul approves for the state to begin paying out "remittances" to the families of the soldiers.
Coincidentally, another round of army recruitment and training occurs in Italy. Meanwhile, our state reserves have fallen to 22K pounds.
Following the British defeat in Kassala, the remaining British armies in Sudan rapidly group up in Wad Madani, with news of an approaching, larger Roman army. They prepare to mount a final stand.
British High Command loses contact with the army in Wad Madani.
Oh, for Christ's sake.
As the remaining armies in Sudan are removed from operation, and a final British army in Ethiopia are all that remains of their once proud African colonial armies, the Consul's office receives an urgent telegram from Bulgaria.

One of the key members of our Balkan Initiative and a fellow member of the People's Revolution has been invaded by hostile Romanian forces, looking to end the Revolution and install their oligarchy. With less than 15K pounds in reserve, the Consul agrees to declare war on Romania and intervene in the war.
He outlines his strategy to the War Council of letting our fellow balkan allies win the war themselves, with some Roman financial support.

News of the outbreak of the new war reach Roman cities. Our people are, no doubt, willing to commit themselves to the cause, despite repeated cuts on pensions and wages. The Republic will not allow the integrity of the Revolution to be questioned!
We have annihilated the British in Africa. We have shattered their attempts to humiliate our Republic and confiscate its grand Colonial Empire. We have won a total victory, and there will be no question of our ultimate supremacy over the British in Africa.

But there is no use in fighting any longer. We must turn to more pressing matters. The British have been humiliated, the strength and resolve of the People's Revolution has been proven.
And let it be known on February 21, 1922, that a nation that once stood on the constant verge of annexation by invading French armies, that had repeatedly led desperate last stands in defence of its capital, that, against all odds, defeated the armies of hostile nations and created that largest African Empire on earth, stood strong. In the face of an invasion by the British Empire, the leading superpower equipped with a massive army of the indentured and unfreed, the People stood united and cast them out!

The Republic has toppled our enemies, and now we will turn to the defense of Fascism against the oligarchs looking to end our success. The Romans shall rise!

With the failure of the British to end the expansionism of the Republic, the Kaiser calls a meeting with his generals. For there is one army stronger than the British.

As the Consul waves to adoring crowds, proclaiming the victory over the British, Berlin is watching.

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