The Liberation of Bucharest - The Matrix Games version of East Front II
Bucharest, capital of Romania. (Best played as Allied, or against a human opponent). Romania's alliance with Nazi Germany had always been uneasy. Her sole war aim was to recover the provinces lost to The Soviet Union and Hungary.In 1940, an alliance with Germany seemed the best option to secure these aims, as France and Britain (her natural allies) were too far away, and after June 1940 France was defeated anyway. Basarabia and Northern Bucovina were recovered from the Soviets during Operation Barbarossa in 1941, but Hitler never made Hungary give back Northern Transylvania, despite repeated requests from Marshal Antonescu, the Romanian leader. In August 1944, with the frontline shattered by the latest Soviet offensive and Russian troops advancing into Romania, King Mihai and elements within the Government decided that the time was right to change sides. On 23rd August, Marshal Antonescu, was summoned to the King's Palace and was asked for his plans to save Romania from disaster. He could not give a satisfactory reply, so the King asked him to resign. The Marshal refused, he was arrested, and locked up in the King's wall safe! News of the coup reached Hitler within a few hours, and orders were issued to German forces within Romania to seize control of vital places such as Bucharest and the Ploiesti oilfields. Romania's oil was vital to the German war effort. The Brandenberg Parachute battalion was to be flown in to support the troops already in place. General Gerstenberg had earlier boasted that he would be able to quell any Romanian coup with a Luftwaffe Flak Battery. That claim was about to be tested!