Thursday, 19 February 2015

Air War C21 Flashpoint Baltic?

The news today included a topical article on the potential for a Russian move against Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia at some point in the not too distant future. This set me off on one of the usual 'what if' wanderings, with AirWar C21 in mind.

I've been looking for an interesting modern or ultra-modern setting for this for ages but haven't had much luck, aside from the Alto Cenepa war and the Israeli -Syrian clash over the Bekaa valley. So, the current tension in the Baltic States ticks lots of boxes.

There is at present a NATO Baltic Air Policing mission which operates from bases in Poland, Estonia and Lithuania, with NATO states providing air cover on a rotational basis. The Italian air force is currently on duty with four Eurofighter Typhoons.

The potential for a small number but a wide variety of fighter types, drawn from a range of NATO participants, is one really cool aspect. There are the expected F16's flown by the Dutch, Polish, Belgians and Portuguese amongst others, but lots of other interesting variations as well.

The Italians and British use the aforementioned Eurofighter Typhoon, while the Czechs deploy the Saab Gripen and the Poles the MiG29 Fulcrum. On top of that, the Canadians have CF-18 Hornets while the French have Rafales and Mirage 2000's. The US have also deployed F15's from the UK, as and when required.

As you can see, there's lots of variety here and an escalation of the current situation could easily draw in several of the NATO contingents against a Russian threat to the region, not to mention the Scandinavians with their Falcons and Gripen.

It wouldn't be difficult to work out a series of linked scenarios for this, perhaps initiated by an interception 'gone wrong', which might make a 'not at all predetermined' Russian response much less questionable, at least from Mr Putin's point of view.

It wouldn't be the first time.

Anyway, as far as wargaming goes, the obvious choice would be 1/600 scale using the Oddzial Osmy range of modern aircraft, which includes all of the above and the Su27 for the Russians. I would use Tumbling Dice planes but there are some important missing types, so the O8 approach would seem to be the better option.

Again, this is all pie in the sky but I think it could be a lot of fun!


  1. Let me know if you need any new aircraft stats

  2. You are on the same line of thought that I am. Check out the post I just put up on my blog, I just painted up two SU-27's and two JAS-39's. I am working on the stats for the planes. I have had AirWar: C21 for a number of years but I have never played it. But now I have the planes and I will be giving it a try very soon. FYI the Swedes and the Finish are going to participate in a joint exercise with the USA in the Baltic. I would be interested to see your scenarios that you come up with. I am waiting for some SU-24's to arrive and paint them up for the first scenario based on the events that took place here in Sweden in September 2014.

  3. I did some work a few years ago with the Lithuanian Defence Ministry who wanted to sell off their NATO airbase as they didn't think they needed it any more. They wanted more EasyJet flights instead. Now I guess they will be worried that they turn into a Russian Army R&R centre like they were in the Soviet days. Easy Jet stag parties won't be such a worry after all!



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