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Night Rangers at Cisterna - January 22, 1944

Operation Shingle - Battle of Cisterna - Operation Shingle
Western Front By: Nightrain - Last update: 03/17/2012
Axis Player: Allied Player:
x4 x6 x6 x6
    first You play first

Historical Background:
The 1st and 3rd Ranger Battalions preceding the main attack by the 4th Ranger Battalion and the 3rd Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment attempted a night infiltration behind German lines into the town of Cisterna. Their objective was to seize the town in a surprise attack and hold it until the main attack came through.

The two battalions totaling 767 men and supported by a platoon of 43 men of the 3rd Reconnaissance Troop moved out at 01:30 and moved in the darkness along a drainage ditch in column formation. Although they were able to bypass numerous German positions, at first light they were still short of their objective and needed to cross open ground for the final portion of the approach. At this point the Rangers were attacked by strong German forces of the 715th Motorized Infantry Division and Herman Göring Panzer Division, including at least seventeen German Panzer IV tanks. According to the Army history of the operation, the infiltration movement had apparently been discovered and an ambush prepared.

The 1st Battalion commander Major Dobson personally knocked out one tank by shooting the commander with his pistol, climbing atop the tank, and dropping a white phosphorus grenade down the hatch. Two other tanks were captured by Rangers, but then knocked out by other Rangers who did not know they had been captured. Despite fierce fighting, there was little chance of success once the Rangers were attacked on the open ground. German units put Ranger prisoners in front of their tanks and commanded other Rangers to surrender. After the approximately seven-hour battle, only six of the 767 Rangers and one member of the 3rd Recon troop returned to Allied lines, resulting in an overall loss of 803 men. The exact number of killed, wounded and captured is unknown, although historian Carlo D'Este estimated well over 400 Rangers became POWs. German casualties reached a similar level.

German Player: Take 4 Command cards

Allies Player: Take 6 Command cards
You move first

Conditions of Victory:
6 Medals

Special Rules:
Night Attack rules are in effect (see p. 8).

Mountain is impassable and artillery cannot fire over it.

Scenario Bibliography:

Please note that this scenario was not approved by Richard Borg or Days of Wonder, so you have to check yourself about playability, potential gaming issues, etc.

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