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The Grand Alliance Grand Attack

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Re: The Grand Alliance Grand Attack
Post by SWM   » Thu Apr 24, 2014 7:04 am

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I don't see any evidence that Admiral Henke is doing any such thing. She is not committing the Empire to any long-term defense of these systems, and I don't see it as primarily a campaign for freedom. There are practical reasons for all of her decisions. Supporting freedom is certainly a factor, but I don't think she would have done it if that were the only motivation.
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Re: The Grand Alliance Grand Attack
Post by Whitecold   » Thu Apr 24, 2014 7:53 am

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namelessfly wrote:I see that success is the biggest vulnerability to the GA's current strategy to take down the league by being the champions of freedom. They are making exactly the same mistake that President G W Bush made in the war on terror. By adopting the NeoCon dream of spreading democracy at the barrel of a gun, Bush ensured that any successful invasion against terrorist supporting states (and all revisionist history not withstanding, Iraq as well as Afghanistan was a terrorist supporting state. See the first bombing of the world Trade Center and Iraqi payments to the families of Palestinian suicide bombers) would impose an onerous defensive obligation on the US. Occupying first Afghanistan then Iraq was a burden that neutralized the US ability to conduct further offensives against North Korea and Iran, not to mention Pakistan which had been not just the Taliban's puppet master but had replaced France as the World's nuclear weapons proliferator. Conducting purely punitive operations that destroyed the ability of Afghanistan and Iraq to feed themselves by destroying all industrial and transportation systems as well as irrigation systems would have neutralized them without encumbering the US. Iran, North Korea and Pakistan would have then become the next victims.

We have already seen in Shadow of Freedom that offensive operations against Meyers and Mobius that are waged under the banner of freedom are burdening the GA with defensive commitments that the GA can not meet. Weber has allowed us into Adm Henke's head enough to know that she was already concerned about her ability to properely defend the few Talbot Quadrant systems that had joined the SEM. Attacking Meyers was motivated by a desire to deny the SLN with a forward operating base that could project force against the SEM systems. If Adm Henke had been content to merely destroy the SLN Ships and the SLN Fleet bases and
then rape and pillage Meyer's industrial infrastructure so that the SLN Fleet base could not be rebuilt, it would be great. However; she has conducted the operations against Meyers and Saltash as a crusade to protect freedom rather merely punitive expeditions. Unlike Afghanistan and Iraq, Meyers seems to have a functional, rational government with effective security forces
that can provide governance. However; it appears that by launching a crusade to protect freedom, Adm Henke has assumed a responsibility to provide a naval presence to protect the system. She simply does not have enough LACs and missile pods much less the starships to meet more defensive obligations. Taking out Mesa will make this problem worse.

If the GA continues to wage a war to spread and protect freedom rather than merely punitive operations, the GA will soon spread itself so thin that it will be possible for the SLN to counter attack successfully against small, isolated RMN system pickets. Even if the system picket of a few DDs withdrawal and send for the Calvary while the LACs evade combat, the SL will be able to occupy systems long enough to destroy their industrial infrastructure and may be hit more than a few planetary targets which will now understand has been normal, SLN procedure. If the SLN can wage such operations often enough, every system will realize that aligning itself with the GA is A BAD IDEA.


While I agree that enforcing democracy at gunpoint is a bad idea, I don't think the argument is right. The GA has enough combat power to safeguard large parts of the verge from SL attacks with the current balance of naval power. Exactly by taking out the sector bases the SL can't project any power into those sectors, because their logistics suck as much as everything else. While this doesn't completely prevent the SL from getting at some planets, that is not the end of the world. While the affected planets won't be happy, they and especially everyone else still know the Manties are at war, and in a war, you can loose a battle.
The real trouble with such commitments waits a few years down the road, with commitments on the ground, once the liberated verge planets find that their problems did not all mysteriously disappear. Then it only takes some dissatisfied protesters, and there will be quite a few when the entire economic system that was once controlled by the Transstellars gets overthrown, and a bad reaction from the security forces to turn the Manties into the evil empire of doom trying to replace the SL.
The problems and dangers will be those that can't be solved by throwing enough laser-head missiles at.
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Re: The Grand Alliance Grand Attack
Post by PeterZ   » Thu Apr 24, 2014 9:02 am

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Those are the very tactics of the SLN prior to the Rise of Manticore. The SLN promissed complete and total destruction as a consequence of any neobarb intransigence. Even the SLN didn't have enough ships to protect everything.

The GA has even fewer ships and their area of responsibility is growing very quickly. No matter how hard they try to deploy enough hulls to secure individual systems, the true protection for those systems is the promise of RHM SDPs with blood in their eye appearing out of hyper. If the RMN refuses to hammer systems supporting the SLN and the SLN continues to hammer systems supporting the RMN, Namelessfly's point is pretty well made.

I happen to think that the GA aiding systems that want to freedom and request help is a good thing, if they are willing to hammer the snot out of those systems supporting the SL. Yes, providing support to liberated systems will drain resources, but not providing that support reduces the number of systems that eventually ally with the GA. That will ultimately lose the war for the GA since they cannot grow fast enough to outproduce the SL without growing their own economic base.

JohnRoth wrote:
namelessfly wrote:I see that success is the biggest vulnerability to the GA's current strategy to take down the league by being the champions of freedom. They are making exactly the same mistake that President G W Bush made in the war on terror. By adopting the NeoCon dream of spreading democracy at the barrel of a gun, Bush ensured that any successful invasion against terrorist supporting states (and all revisionist history not withstanding, Iraq as well as Afghanistan was a terrorist supporting state. See the first bombing of the world Trade Center and Iraqi payments to the families of Palestinian suicide bombers) would impose an onerous defensive obligation on the US. Occupying first Afghanistan then Iraq was a burden that neutralized the US ability to conduct further offensives against North Korea and Iran, not to mention Pakistan which had been not just the Taliban's puppet master but had replaced France as the World's nuclear weapons proliferator. Conducting purely punitive operations that destroyed the ability of Afghanistan and Iraq to feed themselves by destroying all industrial and transportation systems as well as irrigation systems would have neutralized them without encumbering the US. Iran, North Korea and Pakistan would have then become the next victims.

We have already seen in Shadow of Freedom that offensive operations against Meyers and Mobius that are waged under the banner of freedom are burdening the GA with defensive commitments that the GA can not meet. Weber has allowed us into Adm Henke's head enough to know that she was already concerned about her ability to properely defend the few Talbot Quadrant systems that had joined the SEM. Attacking Meyers was motivated by a desire to deny the SLN with a forward operating base that could project force against the SEM systems. If Adm Henke had been content to merely destroy the SLN Ships and the SLN Fleet bases and
then rape and pillage Meyer's industrial infrastructure so that the SLN Fleet base could not be rebuilt, it would be great. However; she has conducted the operations against Meyers and Saltash as a crusade to protect freedom rather merely punitive expeditions. Unlike Afghanistan and Iraq, Meyers seems to have a functional, rational government with effective security forces
that can provide governance. However; it appears that by launching a crusade to protect freedom, Adm Henke has assumed a responsibility to provide a naval presence to protect the system. She simply does not have enough LACs and missile pods much less the starships to meet more defensive obligations. Taking out Mesa will make this problem worse.

If the GA continues to wage a war to spread and protect freedom rather than merely punitive operations, the GA will soon spread itself so thin that it will be possible for the SLN to counter attack successfully against small, isolated RMN system pickets. Even if the system picket of a few DDs withdrawal and send for the Calvary while the LACs evade combat, the SL will be able to occupy systems long enough to destroy their industrial infrastructure and may be hit more than a few planetary targets which will now understand has been normal, SLN procedure. If the SLN can wage such operations often enough, every system will realize that aligning itself with the GA is A BAD IDEA.


So you're arguing for a return to the tactics of the 30 Years' War and Sherman's march through Georgia?
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Re: The Grand Alliance Grand Attack
Post by namelessfly   » Thu Apr 24, 2014 10:50 am

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Exactly!!!!

JohnRoth wrote:
namelessfly wrote:I see that success is the biggest vulnerability to the GA's current strategy to take down the league by being the champions of freedom. They are making exactly the same mistake that President G W Bush made in the war on terror. By adopting the NeoCon dream of spreading democracy at the barrel of a gun, Bush ensured that any successful invasion against terrorist supporting states (and all revisionist history not withstanding, Iraq as well as Afghanistan was a terrorist supporting state. See the first bombing of the world Trade Center and Iraqi payments to the families of Palestinian suicide bombers) would impose an onerous defensive obligation on the US. Occupying first Afghanistan then Iraq was a burden that neutralized the US ability to conduct further offensives against North Korea and Iran, not to mention Pakistan which had been not just the Taliban's puppet master but had replaced France as the World's nuclear weapons proliferator. Conducting purely punitive operations that destroyed the ability of Afghanistan and Iraq to feed themselves by destroying all industrial and transportation systems as well as irrigation systems would have neutralized them without encumbering the US. Iran, North Korea and Pakistan would have then become the next victims.

We have already seen in Shadow of Freedom that offensive operations against Meyers and Mobius that are waged under the banner of freedom are burdening the GA with defensive commitments that the GA can not meet. Weber has allowed us into Adm Henke's head enough to know that she was already concerned about her ability to properely defend the few Talbot Quadrant systems that had joined the SEM. Attacking Meyers was motivated by a desire to deny the SLN with a forward operating base that could project force against the SEM systems. If Adm Henke had been content to merely destroy the SLN Ships and the SLN Fleet bases and
then rape and pillage Meyer's industrial infrastructure so that the SLN Fleet base could not be rebuilt, it would be great. However; she has conducted the operations against Meyers and Saltash as a crusade to protect freedom rather merely punitive expeditions. Unlike Afghanistan and Iraq, Meyers seems to have a functional, rational government with effective security forces
that can provide governance. However; it appears that by launching a crusade to protect freedom, Adm Henke has assumed a responsibility to provide a naval presence to protect the system. She simply does not have enough LACs and missile pods much less the starships to meet more defensive obligations. Taking out Mesa will make this problem worse.

If the GA continues to wage a war to spread and protect freedom rather than merely punitive operations, the GA will soon spread itself so thin that it will be possible for the SLN to counter attack successfully against small, isolated RMN system pickets. Even if the system picket of a few DDs withdrawal and send for the Calvary while the LACs evade combat, the SL will be able to occupy systems long enough to destroy their industrial infrastructure and may be hit more than a few planetary targets which will now understand has been normal, SLN procedure. If the SLN can wage such operations often enough, every system will realize that aligning itself with the GA is A BAD IDEA.


So you're arguing for a return to the tactics of the 30 Years' War and Sherman's march through Georgia?
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Re: The Grand Alliance Grand Attack
Post by kzt   » Thu Apr 24, 2014 10:55 am

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PeterZ wrote:I happen to think that the GA aiding systems that want to freedom and request help is a good thing, if they are willing to hammer the snot out of those systems supporting the SL. Yes, providing support to liberated systems will drain resources, but not providing that support reduces the number of systems that eventually ally with the GA. That will ultimately lose the war for the GA since they cannot grow fast enough to outproduce the SL without growing their own economic base.

These systems (other then actual SLN bases) are fundamentally useless to the GA. They just absorb resources. Even worse, taking them away from the SL doesn't have any effect on the industrial capability of the SL. You could take 1000 verge systems away (which would require tying down essentially the entire RMN and RHN and all the ground forces they can come up with) and you still won't have done anything to impact the ability of the SL to fight.

It's like fighting the US fighting the Soviet Union and deciding to invade via Shanghai and needing to conquer most all of China before you reach Kazakhstan, much less Moscow. I suspect you will run out of troops before you get close to Moscow.
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Re: The Grand Alliance Grand Attack
Post by namelessfly   » Thu Apr 24, 2014 11:03 am

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SWM wrote:I don't see any evidence that Admiral Henke is doing any such thing. She is not committing the Empire to any long-term defense of these systems, and I don't see it as primarily a campaign for freedom. There are practical reasons for all of her decisions. Supporting freedom is certainly a factor, but I don't think she would have done it if that were the only motivation.


G W Bush had presumed that he was not committing the US to any long term defense of Afghanistan and Iraq. Bush bought into the NeoCon fantasy that all peoples yern to be free when the reality is that most people, including many in the US, yearn to have the political or economic power to screw their neighbor. "Democracy" = Anarchy!
Most Verge systems will have minimal experience with successful self government. I expect that many Verge colonies are recent with colonist from diverse systems that do not have an established national identity. We might even have groups of genetically enhanced humans that are so different that they can't interbreed. (remember Stephany Harrington's internal musings?)
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Re: The Grand Alliance Grand Attack
Post by PeterZ   » Thu Apr 24, 2014 12:33 pm

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What type of help are we discussing? Having boots on the ground or simply helping locals gain independance from OFS and the Transtellars?

I would agree with you that occupying every system is beyond the SEM's ability. Providing some assistance in toppling governments that cannot survive without OFS/SLN support is within the SEM's ability. The primary commitment will be patroling those areas/systems the RMN liberates.

My point is that if they don't even deliver some support now that they have been commited to providing that help by the MAlign, they will never have the foundation to build the network of allies they need to stand toe to toe with the SL rump states of the future.

kzt wrote:
PeterZ wrote:I happen to think that the GA aiding systems that want to freedom and request help is a good thing, if they are willing to hammer the snot out of those systems supporting the SL. Yes, providing support to liberated systems will drain resources, but not providing that support reduces the number of systems that eventually ally with the GA. That will ultimately lose the war for the GA since they cannot grow fast enough to outproduce the SL without growing their own economic base.

These systems (other then actual SLN bases) are fundamentally useless to the GA. They just absorb resources. Even worse, taking them away from the SL doesn't have any effect on the industrial capability of the SL. You could take 1000 verge systems away (which would require tying down essentially the entire RMN and RHN and all the ground forces they can come up with) and you still won't have done anything to impact the ability of the SL to fight.

It's like fighting the US fighting the Soviet Union and deciding to invade via Shanghai and needing to conquer most all of China before you reach Kazakhstan, much less Moscow. I suspect you will run out of troops before you get close to Moscow.
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Re: The Grand Alliance Grand Attack
Post by n7axw   » Thu Apr 24, 2014 5:11 pm

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I have been wondering how this will work out myself. There is a strong percentage of these OFS run systems who no longer have the political framework for self governance to fall back on once Sollies are kicked out. To leave such a system unoccupied would leave a vacuum for chaos, civil war or the return of OFS.

In Shadow of Freedom Mike Henke reflects on this without having a solution that doesn't include garrisoning these worlds.

Don
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Re: The Grand Alliance Grand Attack
Post by namelessfly   » Thu Apr 24, 2014 6:29 pm

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n7axw wrote:I have been wondering how this will work out myself. There is a strong percentage of these OFS run systems who no longer have the political framework for self governance to fall back on once Sollies are kicked out. To leave such a system unoccupied would leave a vacuum for chaos, civil war or the return of OFS.

In Shadow of Freedom Mike Henke reflects on this without having a solution that doesn't include garrisoning these worlds.

Don



This is what I am thinking. Meyers seems to have the capacity for self governance. However; Mobius and other planets seem to have become OFS protectorates because they were incapable of self governance and were having a civil war. The RMN might prefertobelieve that liberating these planets from the OFS will result in peace breaking out, but it seems more plausible that theynwill turn out like Iraq and Afghanistan. Even the successful efforts by the US to export democracy after WW-2 to Germany and Japan required long teem occupation. The spectre of the US abandoning Germany to Russia deterred an evolving insurgency and actually motivated former SS and Gestapo officials to help suppress violent descent. Japan was a dangerous place for US troops off base until the Korean War inspired the Japanese to consider the prospect of being invaded by China and/or Korea not to mention Russia.

Even if liberated planetscan govern themselves, they will require at least some naval forces to protect them from SLN reprisals or piracy. The SLN is no longer a credible enforcer of the EE (which they seem to be a violator of). How long until some planet gets smashed.
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Re: The Grand Alliance Grand Attack
Post by csilkenat   » Thu Apr 24, 2014 9:24 pm

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Right now, and for the next few months at least RMN destroyers and light cruisers can punch out SLN super-dreadnoughts and for the next two years at least they will be able to trade at at least parity. This means that even if it will lead to more problems later the immediate objective has to be to cause as much chaos and absorb as much as a buffer to blunt the next wave or two of SLN construction and then those same planets can serve as recruitment centers for marines and army to begin the fight for whatever Renaissance Factor that rises. They cannot enforce democracy at the point of a gun, but they can provide those planets with an active resistance movement a fighting chance.

In a longer term view every planet that can be taken is worth upgrading, especially as we may well be looking at an imperium of man for the next few dozen years. (What does that make the RMN, Haven, or the IAN? The Tau, Eldar, and I have no idea?) The Solarian league as we know it will die and the only questions are how fast and who ends up holding what. Manticore is in a great position because it can begin seizing frontier territory while simply holding Beowulf and later can begin absorbing core territories. At this point in time the risks of overextending are more than overwhelmed by the risks of not taking as much as possible as the Malign are looking to create a counterbalancing power.

The objective for this is not really to establish democracy as to facilitate it where it is already making a good shot and to take as much of a buffer as can be built. Think less Iraq and Afghanistan and more American Colonies, France, and Russia. Not imposing democracy but giving it room to take over.
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