Author Topic: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic  (Read 3073 times)

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Offline JamesAPrattIII

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #60 on: September 01, 2017, 03:11:03 PM »
Note the British and the French at Gallipoli and the Germans attempt to enter the Gulf of Riga in 1915 both failed. The ships could not fight past shore batteries and minefields. The Germans also had to deal with submarines as well. The British and Germans both had battleships to engage the forts. The RN in the Baltic in 1919 had nothing larger than a light cruiser. the reds also had a few submarines in commission.

Looking at Sir Paul Dukes wiki bio his book "Red Dusk and the Morrow" which deals with his time as a spy is online at archive.org Which is a good source for details.

Some errata for the book "operation Kronstadt
The Petropavlovsk and Andrei Pervozvanny were Battleships not Battlescruisers. On the ships:

Andrei Pervozvanny  and her sister ship the imperator Pavel I spent most of WW I in port and these "warf rats" were called the "convict brigade" The Imperator Pavel I was the first ship in the Baltic fleet to revolt in March 1917 . These ships were no fun to serve on they had no portholes had poor ventilation and high sick lists the Imperator Pavel I was the worst of the two. The Imperator pavel I was laid up in September 1918.  As for the Andrei Pervozvanny the ship did bombard Kransia Gorka on 14-15 June 1919. it was also damaged by one torpedo  during the 18-19 August 1919 CMB attack and not repaired.

The Petropavlovsk engaged British destroyers on 30 may and 4 june 1919 and shelled Kranaia Gorka from 13-16 Jun 1919. The ship was not damaged by the August CMB attack the torpedos passed under the ship and hit the quay

Trotsky not Stalin was on the scene during the capture of Kranaia Gorka

page 203 the 6 British tanks they were not put out of action by someone putting sand in their gearboxs. The Tanks had mixed British and Russian crews. They were in poor shape mechanicaly. When the White army retreated they were handed over to the Estonians who got 4 and the Latvians who got 2. Some were still around in 1940 when the Soviets annexed the countries and at least one was used as a pillbox against the Germans.

Offline Nictionary

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #61 on: September 02, 2017, 01:35:30 AM »
I was actually thinking of using the ML's not for damaging targets in Petrograd, but for smuggling in agents, like they were used in WW2 in the kidnap of General Kreipe.  Is using a submarine for that task, such as was done in Operation Pastorius, out of the question as well?
The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.

Albert Einstein

Offline Kalafrana

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #62 on: September 02, 2017, 02:30:43 PM »
You would need to look closely at depth of water, tides and the degree of slope of the beach concerned.

Realistically, you would want to land your agent at or near high tide so that the vessel can come as close inshore as possible. Since the Baltic, like the Mediterranean is nearly landlocked, I don't think it has much tidal range. You could try contacting the UK Hydrographic Office on that one.

Also try reading Paddy Ashdown: 'A Brilliant Little Operation', which has a good deal on the practical aspects of landing a raiding party from a submarine.

Hope that helps

Ann   

Offline JamesAPrattIII

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #63 on: September 03, 2017, 11:50:00 AM »
Using a submarine to pick someone up is out as well. The water is too shallow around Kronstadt and Petrograd.  The CMBs were able to slip in and pick up and drop off agents because they were shallow enough to float over mines and the breakwaters between the forts north of Kronstadt. The CMBs were also small, low lying, and grey camo painted so they would be hard to spot at night. Also with the CMBs they were fast enough to make the trip and back in the dark. After the August kronstadt raid the Reds strengthened their defenses to the point that the CMBs could not get through. The only time they tried this on 25 August the boat failed to get through and nearly didn't make it back. The Reds also increased there patrols along the coastal areas so even if the boat had got through it would have had a hard time picking anyone up with out being spotted and shot at by them.

Note the Cheka in the Petrograd area in 1919 was headed by Yakof K Peters one of this organizations most ruthless agent hunters ect.

Note: the operation on Crete where General kreipe was kidnaped was a different war, under different conditions, ect compared to what was going on around Petrograd in 1919

Offline JamesAPrattIII

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #64 on: September 04, 2017, 02:24:32 PM »
Its been a long time since I have read anything on Crete in WW II. I believe landing and picking someone up at night by a ML on the  South coast of Crete was not that dangerous or difficult compared to what Agar did in the Kronstadt-Petrograd area. First of all on Crete most of the towns ports, airfields people, and German troops were on the North side of the island. The south side was had few people and the Germans did not have the troops to patrol the whole Island it was too big and the terrain was too mountainous. The Germans also by early 1944 when this operation took place had few if any aircraft on Crete. So there was little risk of the ML being spotted by aircraft. Also the weather at this time of the year in this part of the world is often bad. The Germans also had to deal with a large scale local resistance movement which controlled large parts of the island where the Germans seldom if ever went. So if a ML arrived at a pre-arranged beach on the South side of Crete. It could land or pick up people and be on its way with few problems.

Offline Nictionary

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #65 on: September 04, 2017, 08:20:22 PM »
Ok, I concede.  I had written up a whole scene inspired by that and similar episodes, but I guess having it in Petrograd just isn't plausible.  Would a waterborne infiltration of agents be more believable if it were done by river? 
The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.

Albert Einstein

Offline Kalafrana

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #66 on: September 07, 2017, 11:35:38 AM »
Which river are you thinking of?

If you are thinking of the Neva, then presumably your plan is to go downstream from Lake Ladoga.

James, was there much merchant shipping going in and out of Petrograd in this period? It might be possible to land and agent or two in the guise of a seaman.

Ann

Offline Nictionary

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #67 on: September 07, 2017, 03:02:20 PM »
I was actually thinking of the Volga.  I think James is right and Petrograd is just not doable, since my prospective scene involves more than just one or two agents.  I don't think the Whites ever got close enough to Lake Ladoga to launch anything big from there.
The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.

Albert Einstein

Offline Kalafrana

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #68 on: September 08, 2017, 03:03:32 AM »
I agree. The Volga offers much more scope.

Ann

Offline Nictionary

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #69 on: September 08, 2017, 09:27:33 AM »
Alright then.  I believe the Whites had a small flotilla on the Volga, but I haven't been able to find details about what kind of boats they had.
The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.

Albert Einstein

Offline Kalafrana

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #70 on: September 08, 2017, 12:00:23 PM »
James may know.

Otherwise, stick to what is credible. find out what sort of vessels were in use on the Volga for trading and transport purposes, and have your characters take over a few of them and equip them with machine guns and perhaps ancient naval guns (you would need to be able to get hold of the latter).

Hope that helps

Ann

Offline JamesAPrattIII

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #71 on: September 09, 2017, 02:46:41 PM »
One maybe a few ships got into Petrograd via Sweden in early 1919 before the RN blockaded the port. In 1920 when then PM Lloyd George lifted the trade ban and the RN blockade was removed and the Whites were gone more than a few ships came and went. The book "Histories  greatest heist" mentions this.

The Whites I believe did capture a number of ships and craft on the Volga. I don't know what types but i would say river craft. I think the book "Gone to Russia to Fight" mentions some of what the reds used. Also note the Whites did use a number of craft in the caspian Sea

Offline Nictionary

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #72 on: September 14, 2017, 09:41:49 PM »
Thanks a bunch.  It'll probably be a while before the next scene is posted, but I'm working on it.  In the meantime, does  anyone know how far north of Tsaritsyn the front line extended in late September and early October 1919?  None of the maps I've consulted are small enough scale to be sure.
The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.

Albert Einstein

Offline JamesAPrattIII

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #73 on: September 16, 2017, 06:01:39 PM »
I don't think it was too far. I will do more research. Note: I belive there were hundreds of Russian Naval officers in Siberia with the White army just sitting around not doing very much during the Civil war. You could have one or more of the agents being a naval officer(s) or warrant officers to help man the gunboat. Also note the Whites did operate a number of river gunboats in Siberia.

Offline Nictionary

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Re: Operation Rod of Iron: AU fic
« Reply #74 on: September 16, 2017, 06:54:53 PM »
Thanks.  The reason I ask is to assess the risk of coming under attack from shore batteries or Red river craft during the infiltration and getaway.
The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.

Albert Einstein