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Diplomaticcorp Discussion Forum:  dc319

(1936 Playtest)

Subject:< 1936: France's Levantine Army >
Topic:< dc319 >
Category:< Active Games >
Posted:Sep 17, 2010 at 1:56 pm
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Hi Sun,
glad to have you join the discussion. Comments inserted below:
There's been a lot of discussion here about France, and I personally
have had a closer perspective on that power (although not as close as
Nick!) I think I agree that France is a bit hampered, but not to the
degree that has been expressed here.
That has also been my view, basically. I dare say though that after the
extra muscle I've given France in v1.4, the grande nation will be viewed
in another light.
But I think Beirut is an issue for France. If Turkey wanted to boot
France out of the Mideast, France has no option BUT to appeal to
Britain. And unless Britain steps up, France will lose Beirut. Italy
is too far away to do something in year 1 and USSR could threaten
Turkish space from the north, but again, it won't stop Turkey from
taking Beirut. The fleet in Suez is the only potential help that
France has.
I doubt many Turks will devote two units during the first year to the
task of taking Beirut. If either unit gets bounced, then it can no
longer be done. Add to that that A Beirut isn't such a lethal threat to
Kemal's republic than the country's other rivals in the region.
Generally I'd say there are better hunting grounds for a young Turk.
Besides, what about Soviet A Stalingrad-Eastern Anatolia? That would
force a Turkey (even if he made into both EAS and Alex) to choose
whether to push on to Beirut or defend his capital. I count such a
threat as an effective defence ploy. So I simply don't agree with your
assertion that Britain's the only one who might help out in the anyway
unlikely event of Turkey going "all-in" vs. Beirut during 1936.
But this adds a weird dynamic in the sense that it commits France
and Britain to be friendly in the main theater (Western) based upon
the potential situation in a secondary theater (Near East). Also,
unless Suez moves right away, again it'll arrive too late to help
Beirut if Turkey moves two on that center.
As Pr?sident, I wouldn't have the fate of a remote outpost dictate my
foreign policy. One should not get too hung up on the fate of the French
I know in Diplomacy there are lots of situations where a power can
commit more resources over a rival and who ever loses out in gaining
the tempo advantage loses, but in this case France can only count on
Britain to help out and forgo any other action. In a situation where
France knew Turkey was going to attack him, France only has two
options - bounce Turkey in Alexandretta or get British help to move
Suez to the north. Normally that's not an issue, but here, France
can't reinforce his position in Beirut. Again, without friendly
British help. And so even if France guessed right and bounced Turkey
from having two on Beirut, it'll only forestall it until the following
I fail to see how this might be a problem (and it's really not quite an
accurate description of the situation anyway as I've argued further above).
Against an undistracted and focused Turkey, France won't be able to hold
Beirut indefinitely. Perhaps this explains why France ceded what's
basically the Alexandretta buffer province to Turkey during the 30s
(with the intermediary step of the independent Hatay Republic).
This all can be filed under "works as intended".
I think one potential option could be to have Iraq border Beirut and
then France could use diplomacy to enlist other friendly powers to use
DPs to aid Beirut in the case of a Turkish threat. But I guess it
could cut both ways and Turkey or Britain can use the neutral to
support an attack into Beirut with just one unit.
Again, I don't share there's a problem here. In any case, as France, I'd
generally not want a neighbouring minor power endanger my holdings.
That's what the Brits have to contend with in Suez. Doesn't make for a
particularly comfortable situation. One reason why Britain might put a
premium on taking out Egypt as an independent player in the region (F
Gibraltar being sent round the Cape of Good Hope to that end).
Net net, I don't know if the army in Beirut really aids France and
actually hurts the French position
since 1) France can only appeal to Britain if Turkey attacks his position
Well, we're talking a lot of IFs here (first year, Turkey intent on
taking Beirut). And then there's still the Soviet Union.
and 2) if France loses out and still has his army there, it becomes a
resource drain on France
True. But that would require for the French army to already have moved
away from Beirut as otherwise the Pr?sident might simply disband the unit.
If this is such a major concern for a player, then he'd better make sure
his Levantine army will have to be dislodged in the event of the fall of
Beirut. But as the Pr?sident, I wouldn't be losing much sleep over this
and 3) France has no way to reinforcing or reallocating that unit
effectively by itself.
...at least for not for the foreseeable future. Later on in the game,
France might actually move other forces into the region.
Anyway, it is indeed quite true that event in the Levant might indeed
have repercussions for Metropolitan France (even negative ones if the
scenario you describe comes to pass). But A Beirut nonetheless remains a
valuable French asset. This whole discussion reminds me of a similar one
I once had with someone about 1648, who asserted that A Flanders
presented a liability for Spain. Couldn't disagree more with that claim
or indeed the analogous one regarding 1936's A Beirut.

There is 1 Message in this Thread:

1936: France's Levantine Army (charlesf) Sep 17, 01:56 pm

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