But let's see what came my way. First, for this posting, an overview of the toys that will become part of the Army of Tchagai.
HQ: 1 command stand, 1 utility command vehicle, 1 staff radio vehicle (the Humvee), and 1 'heavy' technical (probably air defence).
3 x Motorized Infantry Company each with:
1 command stand, 2 infantry stands, 1 'weapons' stand; 1 light truck, 1 medium truck, 1 'heavy' technical (with some sort of RCL or something), 1 'light' technical (HMG, perhaps).
At first the trucks were going to be all 'lights' but I noticed a number of 6x4 or 6x6 vehicles in there. As they were also a whisker bigger than the others, it seemed not unreasonable to make them mediums carrying 2 infantry stands.
|Motorized infantry battalion in the service of the Nabob of Tchagai|
HQ: 1 command stand, 1 command utility vehicle, 1 recon AReconV (This is a locally designed and built 'Bagheera' light tracked AFV, bearing an astonishing resemblance to a miniaturized Panther tank).
Recon Company: 3x Saracen APC, 1 command weapons stand, 2 recon infantry stands (both of which may be split into patrol stands).
Assault Company: 2x APC, 1 command weapons stand, 1 infantry stand.
'Stryker' Support Company: Not until 21st century I discover to my horror. There will have to be something else in the 'big gun' armoured car line for earlier.
|The Rapid Response Recon Battalion, in process of forming.|
The Saracens and the 6-wheeled APC have received a grey undercoat...
HQ: 1 command utility vehicle. I'll need to form at least one Forward observer team as well.
What to use as artillery? British 25pr gun/howitzers were mentioned. I am very tempted to form a composite formation comprising 2 field batteries, 1 medium battery and a medium (120mm) mortar battery. That might mean a lot of observer teams, though...
|Prime movers and command vehicle of the Artillery regiment.|
|3 heavy trucks. How best to employ them is the question.|
|Brigade HQ... A lotta work needed here!|
|Can any use be made of these?|
Of course, what is really wanting is armour - main battle tanks. I was thinking something a bit different: French AMX30s. But given the variegated collection obtained so far, this seems to me to take eclecticism just a bit too far. I'm now thinking in terms of Soviet T-55 tanks. I was a bit reluctant at first to accept this suggestion of Brian's, but research indicated quite a few countries have these still in first line service. As most of Brian's project is set in the early 1980s, then it would be more than appropriate. (I have sat in a T55, and I'm here to tell you they ain't what you'd call 'roomy'!)
It was while sorting through this stuff that Brian and I discussed what the map of 'Greater' Harad and its environs would look like. Here is a tidied up sketch of the 'Middle East' as we envisaged:
I was thinking of reorienting the map with the west end at the top, the Arabic directions being exactly the same as on the map - with 'north' (شمال) pointing to the right. But the thing seemed simpler to leave as is.
Among all the toys were seemingly hordes of WW2 Russians. In each of the nine containers pictured are 31 figures - 1 battalion, less 'weapons', assuming I can place 3, instead of the standard 2, figures on a base. Of the rest, there must be at least 2 more such battalions, and plenty left over (especially the 'miscastings') for gun and mortar crews and the like.
My thanks to Brian (A fist full of plastic) for this vast increase in my inventory. And a new project to think about. The 'Jono's World' stuff I will show in another posting.
Acknowledgements: My thanks and welcome to the 94th (James Fisher, FINS) and 95th (Son of York) followers of this blog.