A little bit of Bir Hakeim

This week we were over at Chris K's for a game of NQM. We were back in the Western Desert, for part of Gazala. We've done this before, back in March 2013, but for some reason all the photos have disappeared from my post.

We had four of us in the room. Steve was Rommel, Tim & I shared the Bris and Phil was the Free French. Jon was supposed to join online as the overall British commander, but we cocked up the connection.

Phil is sitting behind the Free French emplacement. Germans and Italians coming on the left hand side, having swept around behind the French. The little groups of 3 vehicles near the camera are me, 7th Div. Tim has similar sized forces towards the top. 3rd Div, I think.

The Italians envelope the French, prior to launching an attack.

Oh boy. Rommel's chaps turn up. There sure are a lot of them, but he doesn't know I'm here, as the recce keep us apart.

As the Germans start their sweep towards the other end of the board, I launch an attack into their flank. I inflict some damage, but can't afford to trade hits like this, being heavily outnumbered.

Sure enough I'm soon a battalion down. My Div HQ is lurking behind a sand dune, in case I need to do something desperate. It may be a tank, but I don't want to lose it.

The Germans brush me aside and hit Tim's hastily formed defence line. The remnants of my force hang round the rear of the Germans, trying to knock out their fuel supplies.

Meanwhile, the Italians are driven off by a Free French counter attack.

Some lucky dice and some HQ arty support do a lot of damage to 15 Panzer. Things are looking up.

A wide shot shows the German advance stalling. My recce units are now well into the rear of the German advance, attacking his fuel and supply convoys. This brings Rommel's advance to a halt for the evening.

Although whilst I was doing this the French got all fired up, and cleared the Italians out properly.

This played much more quickly than the last time we did the battle, which took a day. Since then Chris has put NQM onto squares, and raised the level of combat resolution. He is also simplifying hit allocation and casualty removal. This speeded things along, but hit problems when a target area had units of different type in it. 

Knowing Chris, he'll sort it.


  1. The Battle of Bir Hakeim was the first real victory for the Free French after General Leclerc's bold attack on Fort Koufra.

    The particularity of the Battle of Bir Hakeim like most desert battles is the presence of entrenchments defended by minefields. Have you considered this aspect of the battlefield correctly?


    1. I'm sure Chris has thought about it. We discussed minefields at some point in the evening. I do not profess to be anb expert on the period. Have a look at Chris' blog for more info: https://notquitemechanised.wordpress.com/2023/03/29/nqm-squared-bir-hakeim-26-27-may-1942/

  2. Dear French Follower,

    The minefields are the strips surrounding the four French squares and continuing up to the north.

    Regards, Chris.


Post a Comment