dinsdag 25 augustus 2009

Objectives - first phase

The Prussian advance and objectives

In March, Frederick met with his generals and detailed their instruction and objectives. Speed was of the essence, as Frederick wanted to catch the Austrians mobilizing and seize as many of the magazines and forward depots as quickly as possible. With the Austrians caught off balance and most of their supplies lost, they would have no choice but to ball back on Prague. The number of engagements would be minimal and if effective could bag a lot of prisoners. Aside from capturing as many supplies as possible, if Bevern could hold Konigseck long enough, Schwerin could close his retreat. In either case, they were scheduled to meet on the 24th at Tournau on the Iser.

The Austrian withdrawal and objectives

Historically, Konigseck outnumbered Bevern’s forces nearly 2 to 1. In our campaign, the Prussians had the advantage in numbers; this was altered to add more options for the Prussian. The Austrians were aware of Schwerin’s early invasion, so were puzzled by Bevern’s lack of energy. On the 20th, after our initial skirmish between advance guards, the Prussian intent became clear and the possibility of being cut off, the Austrians began their retrograde movement. Hold Bevern long enough, but avoid encirclement, save as much of the supplies gathered as possible and what could not be moved, must be destroyed.

Skirmish at Friedland

On the afternoon of the 20th, both advance guards meet and skirmished. The clash, though inconclusive confirmed the Prussians were advancing in force, as their long blue columns could be seen snaking their way through the mountain valley. Beck fell back to a prepared Austrian position at Reichenberg.

Next week:
The Battle of Reichenberg

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