The Bear Awakens…

…a ‘what-if’ scenario of Russian aggression.

This is a page dedicated to my ultra-modern forces, representing a (hopefully) fictitious Russian incursion into the Baltic states within the next few years…

Although I have an abiding interest in modern and ultra-modern conflicts, I have no desire to ‘game Iraq or Afghanistan as I have too many friends who have served there, some returning with physical or mental scars, some unfortunately making the ultimate sacrifice…

The setting for my scenario comes from General Sir Richard Shirreff’s ‘War with Russia’ book. A book which is scary, not so much in the combat scenes but in the obvious lack of political will and funding to defend Europe and fully support NATO…

Shiny ‘big ticket’ items such as carriers and Trident do not make up for a lack of boots on the ground and the necessary logistics tail.

Make no mistake, although the West may not be at war with Russia, Putin and the Kremlin ARE and have been pursuing an undeclared war with us, through economic, military, media and political means for decades!

Europe is fairly dependent on Russian gas for energy, Russian money oils the wheels of much of British and European commerce and banking, military adventures such as the annexation of the Crimea peninsula and the ongoing conflicts in Ukraine and Syria seem to be giving Putin the green light to act as he pleases without any significant reprisals. In Syria he has even used chemical warfare, a supposed  ‘red line’ for the US which in the event raised only a whimper, not the promised retaliatory action expected…

We are only recently coming to recognise the insidious effects of Russian dis-information on social media, the ‘fake news’, the dismissing of expert opinions and interference in western elections and referenda…

I have assumed an invasion of Latvia and Estonia from the east while a small force attempts to move from Kaliningrad into Lithuania from the west. It is this Kaliningrad – Lithuania conflict I have chosen to ‘game…

My scenario involves regular forces from the UK, Lithuania and Russia along with pro-Russian Militia and the Lithuanian Forest Brothers and I will post ongoing rambles and photos of finished models as they are completed.

Almost all the figures will be Empress Miniatures, from their ‘Modern Combat’ ranges – superb sculpts, very little flash and consistently excellent service!

Vehicles are a mixture of Empress Miniatures, some out-of-production 28mm S & S models and some 3D printed items.

The village will be mostly Warbases’ Eastern Europe range with a few improvements and updates.

Progress 12.10.2020

The female insurgents ar enow finished, as is the first of the Russian troops – this one painted up as a Medic. I know the full red cross on white may not be used in combat situations but I needed some way to distinguish him from the Section Leaders who will be on the same size of base…

These are all Empress Miniatures figures.

Progress: 02.10.2020

One issue I recognised early on is that of trying to set the scene – the games mat I’ll be using is a generic open heathland, suitable for (and used for) anything from Celtic Britain through Scottish Highlands for the ’45 to even Siberia for my Russian Civil War force whenever it is finished. Equally, the buildings of the village are usable from late 1700’s through to present day for any Eastern European or Russian area.

How to make the playing field look instantly recognisable as present day, without reducing the universality of the mat or buildings?

What is one of the most iconic features of our world? The humble mobile phone mast, or cell phone as our transatlantic colonies refer to them…

With this in mind I purchased some Plastruct truss beams and some Evergreen Styrene half-round strip to build a mast.

An HO scale refrigirated container, with the doors sanded off, provided the housing for the electronics.

The mast was mounted on a plastic GW 30mm diameter base to act as the concrete foundation and the mast and container surrounded by light grey railway ballast.

I think the finished article does the job…

Upgraded T-55, operated by the Kaliningrad Liberation Front (unkown make)
pro-Russian Militia emerge from the woods (Empress Miniatures, from their Mordern Combat ‘Insurgents’ range)
pro-Russian Militia on a T-55 (Empress Miniatures figures from their Modern Combat ‘Chechnya’ range)
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