The US Mogdonazian colonization plan
Diamonds For The Sheik

The British outpost of the Havinghill-Bovil Mining Co. had relativly few troubles, only having to deal with bickering natives complaining about each other's height. Nothing too serious, really. Well, Sheik Omar Al Havat decided that that would change. The harem wanted new jewelry, and what better place to get some than at a diamond mine? Swiftly, the Sheik and his men climed the path to the mine, knowing all too well that they could easily be spotted. As a matter of fact, Captain Blywater, the chief British officer, just happened to look out the window of his majestic compound. There was no way that he would let any bloody heathen help themselves to his mine! With one glance, Colour Sargent Singh blew the trumpet.

Out the troops marched into the field and onto the hill, gallantly dropping faster than they could shoot the buggers down (and down the buggers went).

All this commotion made all the native tribes (Pigmy or not) stop bickering. They were sure that trouble would come their way.

And some sort of trouble did arrive. An American convoy, led by Major Ringer, had landed on the opposite shore of the river. The troops were being supported by the USS Summerville, a river monitor, and a small launch with a Gatling gun mounted on it. Major Ringer had clear orders: To make this outpost an American one, and to liberate as much as possible the oppressed natives. He immediatly started by contacting the chiefs and using that sophistication of diplomacy, firewater, on them. After a few rounds, the chiefs began to see the wisdom of having the Americans liberate them from the British. After a few more rounds, they also agreed to attack the British outpost when it would be most vulnerable.

The American Marines advanced through the jungle, looking for ambushes, when suddently an angry hippopotamus overturned a launch. The Liberian militia, aided by their gun-toting officers, worked on turning it upright again.

The British noticed this, and also that more Arab troops, this time cavalry, had appeared downstream. Fearing the worst, they sent their launch to get more troops. Unfortunatly, by the combination of events that included algae, annother hippopotamus and an incappable crew, the launche's engine died and it started drifting downstream.

To counteract this unfortunate event, it also happened that Sheik Omar Al Havat, in all his heroicness, exposed himself to the British and ended up with a bullet straight between the eyes.

The British would not be retaining this advantage for long. Already the infantry was taking severe casualties from Arab matchlock fire.

The natives were having their problems as well. The Arab cavalry was beggining to approach the tribal goods and intended to take them on the run. The captain of the Summerville, a crazed madman, decided that things had been too calm so he opened fire on the unnocupied dugouts laying on the bank. Thankfully, Major Ringer managed to hand out more firewater, so the natives could get riled up about something else: the Arabs!

In a sudden act of simultaneousness, the launch with the Gatling gun fired on the Arabs which were about to find out about angry neighbors emerging from huts with pointy sticks. They all went down in glory.

The British were in a desperate situation. Having nothing left save two cannons and a machine gun, they retreated back towards the compound. The cannons and the machine gun roared as they blasted down row after row of arabs. Maybe things weren't looking so desperate after all.

By a sudden twist of luck, the Arab cavalry jumped up from being dead and raced to pick up as many tribal goods as possible. This could not have come at a worse time for riders. Whole tribes had ammased out from the jungle and all converged on the luckless Arabs. The Americans, wanting to burst forward, unleashed the Gatling, and managed to kill a native chief. As the natives around were drunk, they failed to even notice that he was there.

The Americans had had problems moving towards the British outpost. Or rather put, the captain of the USS Summerville, while playing out how he singlehandidly had sunk the CSS Virginia, blatently refused to heed Major Ringer's repeated orders to blast ahead.

The Americans started towards the outpost. It should be noted that the Marines were already most of the way there, just emerging from the jungle, having found no ambushes. As the ironclad started to pick up steam, it fired a shot at the nearest British artillery, but the captain, still mad as ever, lit a match near the hull and started a fire. The nearest Marine troops rushed to the ship, which the crew members were grounding ashore.

The other Marines came to the river and took shots at the incapacitated crew of the drifting launch. One of the bullets tore through the boiler, exploding the boat into a storm of shrapnel and splinters, but out of range of any nearby troops.

The only clear loosers of the game were the Arabs, having been completely decimated. The British had held on to their outpost, but had hardly any troops left and were cut off due to the American blockade. The Americans had failed to reach the outpost, but given a few more turns, would've probably attacked it and won, given the freshness of the Marines and the Liberian militia when compared to the spent British garrison. The ironclad could or could not have burnt down, hard to say. The natives of course came out as the big winners.

This game was played at Spring Offensive (a gaming convention held by the Canadian War Museum every spring) using The Sword and The Flame.

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