Leaflet by the Italian Propaganda Department (USEAAR, #8)

 

These leaflets were dropped over Bavaria by planes of the Italian air force. The Regia Aeronautica dropped similar leaflets over other regions in the German south, mostly over towns and villages predominantly inhabited by Catholics.

This post is part of an after-action report of Unconditional Surrender! (Salvatore Vasta, GMT Games) and therefore entirely fictitious.   Continue reading

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SPIEL Essen 2019: Most Anticipated Historical Board Games

How fast a year goes by! …I say, not because New Year’s is rolling around, but instead the SPIEL board game fair at Essen. But to each their own holidays, and SPIEL is the Christmas for the tabletop gaming faithful. Four days of playing, trying, and buying. 160,000+ visitors. As I couldn’t go in 2018, I am doubly excited to attend this year again. Therefore, I’ll share my list of the most interesting board games with a historical theme released or demoed there this year. Have fun!

Continue reading

Diary entry of Josephine Lefèvre (USEAAR, #7)

This post is part of an after-action report of Unconditional Surrender! (Salvatore Vasta, GMT Games) and therefore entirely fictitious.

Brussels, June 07, 1940

We had a bit more than two weeks. I knew the Nazis would come back, and back with a vengeance they are. The parades have been a more emphatic show of force than ever, the boots are clicked on the ground more forceful than ever, and the delivery of punishment from slaps to executions is faster than ever. We shall not see peace nor freedom as long as the swastika flies over the Grand-Place. Continue reading

Diary entry of Josephine Lefèvre (USEAAR, #7)

This post is part of an after-action report of Unconditional Surrender! (Salvatore Vasta, GMT Games) and therefore entirely fictitious.

Brussels, May 18

The sweetest euphoria, the bitterest presentiment! The French 3rd Army has come to our liberation. Continue reading

Excerpts from the reports of the French 3rd Army to the Assemblée Nationale (USEAAR, #6)

Written by Pierre Laval, major at the staff of the French 3rd Army

This post is part of an after-action report of Unconditional Surrender! (Salvatore Vasta, GMT Games) and therefore entirely fictitious.

Verdun, May 7, 1940

The army has left their defensive positions in the Maginot fortresses under the cover of night. Strict secrecy is the soldier’s first duty. No radio contact whatsoever. So far, we advance on Sedan unopposed. Continue reading

Letter by Valdis Bumbulis to his mother Inese Bumbulis (#USEAAR, #5)

This post is part of an after-action report of Unconditional Surrender! (Salvatore Vasta, GMT Games) and therefore entirely fictitious.

Letter written in a POW camp in Daugavpils, delivered by a fellow soldier from the same regiment as Valdis Bumbulis who was discharged from the camp

Daugavpils, April 17, 1940

Dearest mother!
In all brevity: I am alive, I am as well as is to be expected under these circumstances. Everything is a bit makeshift, but we are fed regularly. Even more regularly, the politruks educate us, as we citizens of the Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic have much to catch up on – after all, the LSSR is only two weeks old, whereas the comrades from Russia who are my age have lived all their lives in the Soviet Union and therefore know everything about socialism and the great vozhd Stalin. Once we have learned enough, we are discharged from this educational institution to go back to our homes or join the Red Army in its mighty struggle to liberate the workers in Romania and Finland as they have liberated the Latvians. As I have been much miseducated by my bourgeois uncle, the process might take longer for me. Still, I hope to be home soon. Until then, I remain your loving son
Valdis

 

1940-04-06-03-01

Grin and bear it: Latvian civilians bear signs welcoming the incorporation of their country into the Soviet Union. The signs read “Long live socialist Soviet Latvia” (left sign, in Latvian) and “Long live the leader of the working people, comrade Stalin” (right sign, in Russian). The original picture was taken in Riga in 1940, but it is not known if before or after the Red Army had occupied the country.

Willy Brandt and Détente (Century of German History, #7)

I’m doing a series on German history in the 20th century on my blog this year. In intervals of 10 years, I pick a crucial event and explore it – with the help of precisely one board game. You can find the previous posts here:

Today, we go back to 1969, when Willy Brandt took office as chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, and the policy of détente across the Iron Curtain he implemented then. Here, the „German question“ of reunification merged with superpower détente into détente between West Germany and the Soviet Union as well as her allies in Eastern Europe. And when it comes to matters of détente and confrontation, our accompanying game can be no other than the famed Twilight Struggle (Ananda Gupta/Jason Matthews, GMT Games). If you are interested in Brandt’s life beyond détente, check out one of my very first blog posts on exactly that matter. Continue reading