The Battle of Argulbargulabad.

An AK47 Republic game.

All was not well in the Islamic Republic of Dafuqistan.  Some years earlier, the fundamentalist Mudarisun had been ousted by a Western intervention force. A new government was selected from the hotels of Dubai, Ankara and Cairo and the first fully democratic elections returned the only candidate to the office of the President. This top-down restructuring however, was not being felt at local level. As the old Dafuqi proverb goes: “the warlords always win.” The Western military struggled to deal with the complexities of Dafuqi life in the rural south particularly. As usual the local warlords adapted to the new reality quicker than the new government.

As a low-level civil war dragged on, and the power of the President extended no further than the suburbs of his capital Kaboom, popular support for the action dwindled in the West. The Western force was gradually scaled back, and their duties given over to the Islamic Republic of Dafuqistan Army (IRDA), and also to private military contractor companies. One such company was Yellow-water Securities. This group had a long history of providing work for the regular military by getting itself into incidents that it couldn’t get out of and its rules of engagement were somewhere between ‘ad hoc’ and ‘non-existent.’ Yellow-water got around its poor reputation by changing its name a lot. Bluestream, Redriver, Goldshower and now Yellow-water. It maintained its government contracts through some well placed contacts in the US government and when that didn’t work, death threats against State department investigators.

Meanwhile, the Mudarisun had quietly crept back into the south, operating de facto governments in many rural areas. Their charismatic leader Mullah Mohammed Mumakil had, in fact, died 3 years ago, but death was no real disbarment to high office in the Mudarisun. Indeed, the famously taciturn Mullah Mumakil had become positively garrulous since his death, issuing damning pronouncements on government corruption, lax religious practices and the appointment of David Moyes as Manchester United manager.

These forces now converged on the rural town of Argulbargulabad. Argulbargulabad was garrisoned by IRDA forces commanded by colonel Arkand. The colonel had been drawing pay for a full battalion, but in reality only had a couple of companies and was now facing a Mudarisun assault. Reluctantly, he used some of the money he had been skimming to hire fighters from a local warlord and called for reinforcements from the nearby Yellow-water HQ.

The Mudarisun had a solid group of fighters, led by their one-footed commander Mullah Mansur. They had some armoured support and promised artillery. Mullah Mansur had augmented his numbers by hiring fighters from the same local warlord that colonel Arkand had.

The Mudarisun planned to attack the eastern part of Argulbargulabad, assaulting from 3 sides in an attempt to get a foothold in the town. T-55s supported the southern assault, while sporadic mortar fire would have to do for the other two sides. Colonel Arkand dug in and took up position in the eastern district, awaiting aid from the road to the west.

^In the early dawn light, a Mudarisun T-55 approaches Argulbargulabad.


^The town’s defensive position. Top is north. Colonel Arkand is in the eastern sector, the militia are kept out of the way to the northwest.


^The assault begins. Mudarisun fighters attack from the north. A humvee has been parked on the edge of town to provide fire support. Mullah Mansur requested artillery support, while Colonel Arkand tried to rustle up the Dafuqi Air Force. Neither was forthcoming of course.


^From the south, armour supports the attack.


^Increasing the pressure, a mobile force of Mudarisun arrive in pickups from the north and assail the local militia.


^The IRDA have repulsed the attack from the north (background left), but the local militia are hard pressed by the newly arrived Mudarisun.


^Colonel Arkand has repulsed an attack from the west, and the local Warlord troops on the Mudarisun’s side begin to flee. A new attack from the north takes out the Humvee however.


^Yellow-water to the rescue. The PMC column arrives.

The IRDA had hung on against the odds in the eastern sector, but the pressure was beginning to tell. With reinforcements on the way, Colonel Arkand decided to ‘relocate his command position to a more favourable strategic point.’ And he did so very quickly.


^With no time for the Green Cross Code, Colonel Arkand makes a run for it. Watch out for that Toyota.


^Abandoned by their commander, the IRDA grimly hang on.

At this point, the local militia (on the IRDA side) have abandoned their position and don’t look like being able to retake it. The Mudarisun are in control of the northern part of the town, and it is surely only a matter of time before they enter the east. The mercenaries of Yellow-water arrive and debus.


^Yellow-water deploy into the safer part of town.


^Colonel Arkand takes up his new position in the south.

The Mudarisun force to the south had begun to falter, and now Colonel Arkand led a brave, though in hindsight foolhardy, assault. The Mudarisun infantry were easily dispersed, but on approaching the AFVs the realisation dawned that the IRDA were not nearly as well supplied with RPGs as the Mudarisun. Caught in the open, they were attacked by the mobile Mudarisun. Colonel Arkand however, was a born survivor (which in Dafuqistan is a polite way of saying that he changed sides a lot), and somehow escaped.


^The IRDA caught by the Mudarisun pickups. To their rear, the Yellow-water mercenaries have prudently occupied their previously held position.


^Finally, the Mudarisun gain their foothold in the eastern sector.


^Yellow-water mercenaries begin to fire in support of the reluctant militia to their left.


^Insurgents of all stripes were always welcome at the Toyota dealership.


^Mullah Mansur points the way to victory as his assistant posts a new high score on Candy Crush Saga.

In the end, it was a narrow victory for the Mudarisun. The local militias on both sides had fled, leaving the Mudarisun in control of the north of the town, with Yellow-water dug in in the south, doubtless awaiting rescue by Western regulars. Again.

This was our first go at using AK47 Republic for a pre-planned scenario rather than using the standard pre-battle set-up and scenario generator in the rules. It worked very well, and plays quickly, the asset system and the random events triggered by rolling doubles in firing can both be used to tailor the game to the particular situation. All in all, AK47 Republic is more versatile than it appears at first glance.

All figures are 15mm drawn from pretty much every manufacturer that makes anything remotely connected with the period.

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