Command Fiction: The Little Sink

While Operation Little Sink sounds like something from a random generator, it’s in fact a fake name I came up with by myself in the process of writing this post. Now I want to make a Command scenario entitled “Operation Little Sink”.

Or “Plan Little Sink”.

What could it be? My theory is that it’s a limited contingency plan, the smaller counterpart to a “Plan Big Sink”. And what could that contingency be? Perhaps an amphibious operation (sink as in water sink?), although those have to be big. Amphibious raids vs a full-scale attack?

Or air support and limited ground forces (Little Sink) vs. full-scale war (Big Sink)?

Hope my Little Sink scenario doesn’t sunk like many others. (Sorry, had to make the pun)

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My really terrible fanfiction confessions

Ok, so I’ve done a few bad fanfiction things in days gone by. Thankfully, little of this remains saved.

Until now. Oops!

-In terms of pure weirdness, I made a fic where Helga, the final boss of the ridiculous tie-in game Revolution X, killed the Kool-Aid Man. (All I can remember of the plot is her being brought by a MacGuffin Man, the Kool Aid Man appearing, and her turning his pitcher-body into a colander).

-In terms of technical inaccuracy, I had modern warships powered by burning coal.

-And of course, I’ve done “shipping”. Both rammed-together character ships that have no evidence and are likely contradictory, to bad canon character/OC ships. Although a lot of the crazier pairings aren’t really that serious. One was even designed to be the craziest pairing I could think of.

 

 

Command Fiction: All Minus One

This is from an in-progress scenario/editor experiment. I haven’t decided on the details, where this post-Soviet conflict should be, or even who it’d be against (either a real or fictional amalgamated former SSR), but figured I’d have too good an idea.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

199X.

As a foreign journalist, I was very lucky to be able to witness the oncoming offensive at all. I was-sitting at an airbase in central Russia, taking pictures of the red-starred fighters as they roared into the sky. While it wasn’t as dangerous as the frontline (to which I was incredibly thankful to be away from), I wasn’t exactly going to be getting infamous scoops, like the crazy gonzos who were going deep.

So, when six bomb-laden Sukhois roared down the runway, all that meant was footage of them taking off. Just like the last time they took off. Then it was back to sitting around and hearing the well-rehearsed official claims.

A few hours later, we were taking more pictures of the unit returning. The unit of five fighters. Now, this would not be the first aircraft lost in the conflict, but they were understandably tight-lipped about it.

I reported the loss anyway. Somehow I got away with it. The loss of a single fighter aircraft wasn’t really worth covering up, especially as ten had fallen already.

SU-17 FROM (REDACTED) AB HAS NOT RETURNED TO BASE ENEMY ACTION SUSPECTED.

Years later, I was sitting in retirement, reading about the war I’d played a small part in covering. There it was. A credible picture of the wreck, and a listing. On that day in question, Su-17s from the air base I saw launched an attack. One was hit by an enemy SAM and shot down. The pilot was killed on the ground-likely inadvertently, as regulars and other aviators were prized POWs. I learned that Su-17s were pushed extra hard because they’d soon be retired anyway.

But at the time, all I saw was six aircraft leaving and five returning.

A Holiday Song

Most holiday songs are either repetitive classics, glitzy pop with thematic lyrics, or, at their absolute worst, repetitive classics produced in the style of glitzy pop. Thankfully, I heard one that doesn’t fit the category.

That song is The Pretenders’ 2000 Miles. And it wasn’t even intended as a holiday song per se, instead being in remembrance of a lost bandmate. Yet somehow it also works for the seeming meaning of people separated by a long distance. I guess it’s that good.

I guess I have the image of the song playing as the camera pans over a winter battlefield littered with bodies, broken tanks and artillery, and ends up with, as the lyrics describe, people singing in a nearby town.

Command Fiction: The Lessons of Java

This is based on the Command scenario Indonesian War: Air Battle Over Java. I did an after-action report of it, but figure it works as a Command Fiction as well.

Commonwealth forces have participated in airstrikes against a major Indonesian Air Force base. Six aircraft have been lost to enemy action. Damage appears to be major, with the airbase ceasing operations since the bombardment.

– – – – – –

Since the 1995 war, the two sides have adopted radically different lessons learned from the climactic battle over central Java. For the Commonwealth, especially Australia, the biggest was all-weather, high-altitude attack capability. From a military perspective, going flat-out even after taking casualties to AAA was essential to neutralizing the threat to the Commonwealth navy. Yet this would not always be a luxury they could afford, so the acquisition of JDAM-style munitions was an absolute must.

For Indonesia, the choice was harder. They chose land-based high-altitude SAMs. There was a practical reason for this-to counter an enemy that can fly at high altitude and hit targets accurately, you need obvious defenses. But there’s also politics. Despite being an archipelago, the Indonesian Army has historically been by far theĀ  most politically influential branch of the nation’s military-a situation compounded by it remaining intact and suffering relatively few casualties, while the air force and navy were shattered.

So a system that it could control appealed to the Army brass, which is why the major cities now boast S-300s protecting them. To the extent that they fit into a cart-before-the-horse strategy, it’s to inflict unacceptable losses on Australian attackers. Only now the threat comes from the PLAAF attacking from the north instead of Australia attacking from the south.

The TNI-AU has been rebuilt with a handful of modern fighters, while the navy has become a Philippines-esque shriveled wreck.

With relations improved to the point where a 20th anniversary commemoration was handled exceptionally well by both nations, it remains unclear whether the upgraded arsenals will clash again. But the Australians are getting ahead of the curve, acquiring standoff weapons to defeat the horizon-limited SAMs…

 

 

 

Command Semi-Fiction: Pearl Harbor

Today is a Command Fiction day, but it’s also the anniversary of Pearl Harbor. So, what should I do?

Link back to the old Final Countdown reenactment in Command, of course. And ponder something about the date the movie was made. If it had been made a few years later and/ or been a potboiler book with no need to worry about budgets, would it have been, like the scenario was, a triumphalist tale of 1980 airpower crushing the 1941 IJN with the carrier strike going through? (Given the infamous Japan Inc fears of the time, it might be included just for that purpose.)

Interesting how pop culture can change quickly.

Command Community Update

The Command Community Scenario Pack has just been updated, with a wide array of new scenarios ready for play. These range from adaptations of classic Tom Clancy novels to large original works to alternate-history what ifs.

The scenarios are described in full here and can be downloaded in the usual Warfaresims spot here.