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1985: Sacred Oil – Gog and Magog, Chapter One

The following is a photo reportage covering the events of the 1985 conflict in the area defined by Pentagon as the “Southwest Asia theater”, most commonly referred to as Persian Gulf.
The reportage covers from June 12th, 1985, when the military build-up started, to June 29th, 1985, the first day of the Soviet offensive against Iran that ultimately led to World War Three.

Photos are taken from various sources, and comments or explanations are kept to a bare minimum.

Editor’s Note: If you wish to enlist for the 1985: Sacred Oil operation, Report for Duty by writing to Also, click on the pictures for full resolution.

June 12th, 1985: Soviet Union mobilizes forces in North Caucasus, Transcaucasus and Turkestan Military Districts
June 12th, 1985: Ilyushin-76 airlift reinforces Soviet bases in Ethiopia and South Yemen.
June 12th, 1985: Spetsnaz battalions are airlifted near the Iranian border by Mi-8 helicopters.
June 13th, 1985: US 7th Special Forces is airlifted to Diego Garcia
June 13th, 1985: The Shatt-Al-Arab front.
Continue reading 1985: Sacred Oil – Gog and Magog, Chapter One
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It Started in the Shipyards

Kev Sharp from Big Board Gaming is now caught in the “It Started in the Shipyards” campaign from 1985: Under an Iron Sky!

Soviet Union faces a Warsaw Pact in full revolt, and events force NATO to extend Article 5 from “defense of member countries” to “defense of member peoples”….thus including Germans on the East side of the Inner German Border.

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1985: Sacred Oil Cards Sample

Some samples of the Event Cards for Sacred Oil, third and last module of the 1985 series!

Event Cards are used for diplomatic activities, covert operations, but first and foremost for force mobilization. As the Campaign has no predetermined Order of Battle, both sides will use Events to commit forces and try shaping the war theatre to their advantage. Most Events will raise Tension, allowing a broader choice of possible actions. In the end, the Soviet offensive in Southwest Asia will begin, and World War Three with it.

Approximately 80 cards will be included, ranging from mobilization of Turkestan Military District to Operation Cyclone.
Remember: to reserve a copy, report for duty by writing to!

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1985: Sacred Oil Counters Sample

As Soviet Union and US continue to amass troops in the Persian Gulf area, here’s a preview of some of the forces that could be involved in what now appears as an unavoidable conflict. According to CENTCOM internal sources, more details about the current developments will be made public in a few days.

If you want to help stopping the Red Tide or freeing the Arab countries from their post-colonialist oppressors, report for duty by writing to!

Click for Full Resolution!
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Connections Online – Seminar on the 1985 Series

From Soviet doctrine to chemical weapons, from air war to amphibious ops, passing thru REFORGER, electronic warfare & Polish revolts.
How do you turn World War Three, the worst nightmare of 20th century, into a living room sim?

Anthony Morphet and Fabrizio Vianello offer some hindsight on the design process & the decisions to take.

Live event was at April 16th 1200ZT, on Connections Online, and recorded session is here below.
Sponsored by Connections 2021 Online and Armchair Dragoon!

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The Baltic Will Tell – Warsaw Pact Operational Considerations

From Comrade Counter-Admiral Joe Kussey, an in-depth analysis of the options available to Warsaw Pact for Operation Garbo – the invasion of Sweden. The document is also available for download at this link.

After playing Scenario #3 several times and invading Denmark, I thought I would take a look at the difficulties of invading Sweden.  Invading Denmark seemed pretty straight forward – capture Copenhagen’s three city hexes and win the game.  Because of the WP helicopter and air transport fleet, supply is not major concern in that scenario, unless WP loses Air Superiority over Copenhagen.  Given the massive advantage of ground support vs brigades with a defense of “1”, it was just a matter of getting units into position and providing air support to the Polish Marines.  Would this be the case with Sweden?  After setting up, it is clear that this will be more difficult than invading Denmark. 

Upon review, several things stand out.  Unlike Denmark’s situation further southwest, Soviet airfields are more distant from Sweden, ruling out attack helicopter support until an airfield is secured and repaired.  In addition, Soviet forces set aside to conduct the opening invasion are relatively light given the size of Sweden: 3 Air-Drop battalions, a Marine and a parachute brigade.  This will make splitting forces risky.  With no major geographic objective that could end the game (such as the fall of Copenhagen), Soviet forces will have to capture a ground to win.  WP will need to fight on a broader front.  In addition, Sweden also has a better equipped army and will receive NATO reinforcements.

The Three Possible Plans
Continue reading The Baltic Will Tell – Warsaw Pact Operational Considerations
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1985: Deadly Northern Lights Planning Maps

No matter if you are in Leningrad Military District or AFNORTH Headquarters, a map is what it takes to successfully organize an amphibious invasion of Narvik or an airlift to defend Tromsø.

Planning Maps are A4 format with national borders, ports and air bases highlighted. Get them, or risk disaster.

1985DNL Planning Map North

1985DNL Planning Map Central

1985DNL Planning Map South