Operation Ragnarök

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Operation Ragnarök
(Alliance–Imperial War)
Thumb
The planned attack through the Fezzan and Iserlohn Corridors (798 UC (489 IC / 3598 CE))
Date: 20 November 798 UC (489 IC / 3598 CE) — 25 May 799 UC (1 NIC / 490 IC / 3599 CE)
Location: Primarily Sagittarius Arm, also Iserlohn and Fezzan Corridors
Result: Decisive Imperial victory
Belligerents
Galactic EmpireFree Planets Alliance
Galactic Empire Legitimate Government
Commanders / leaders
Reinhard von Lohengramm
Wolfgang Mittermeyer
Oskar von Reuenthal
Alexandor Bucock
Yang Wen-li
Chung Wu-Cheng
Willibald Joachim von Merkatz
Strength
190,600 ships49,320 ships
Casualties / losses
ModerateModerate

Operation Ragnarök (Japanese: 神々の黄昏作戦) was the codename for the invasion of the Free Planets Alliance in 798 UC (489 IC / 3598 CE)799 UC (1 NIC / 490 IC / 3599 CE) by the Galactic Empire, a plan conceived and overseen by Duke Reinhard von Lohengramm, relying on the usage of the Fezzan Corridor to invade and bypassing the formidable Iserlohn Fortress. It was the final major operation of the Alliance–Imperial War, resulting in the capture of the Alliance capital of Heinessen and the signing of the unequal Treaty of Ba'alat, which ended the 150-year long conflict. The most notable aspect of the operation was the Empire's usage of Fezzani space to invade despite the region being a neutral zone, which the Alliance government did not expect.

Contents

Opposing forces

Imperial order of battle

In its entirety, the Empire mobilized a total of 190,600 ships for the operation. Out of those, 112,700 combat ships and 41,900 support ships, along with 16,600,000 soldiers, made up the expeditionary force that attacked through Fezzan, while the remaining 36,000 ships besieged Iserlohn Fortress.

Fezzan front

Iserlohn front

Alliance order of battle

The Alliance fielded its whole fleet, a total force of 49,320 ships and 7,113,600 troops. Of those, 32,900 vessels and 5,206,000 soldiers were part of the force that fought at Rantemario, under Space Fleet Commander Bewcock, while the remaining 16,420 ships and 1,907,600 soldiers were part of the former Iserlohn Garrison Fleet.

Background

After having secured his own position during the Imperial Civil War of 797 UC (488 IC / 3597 CE), Duke Reinhard von Lohengramm decided to turn his attention to the Free Planets Alliance. He cooperated with a Fezzani-conceived scheme to kidnap the child Kaiser Erwin Josef II and smuggle him to the Alliance, where some exiled nobles loyal to the old Goldenbaum Dynasty formed a "Galactic Empire Legitimate Government" with the intent of overthrowing Lohengramm. Many Imperial citizens thought he should focus on internal reforms now that the old nobility was recently defeated, but the formation of the exiled government of aristocrats and Goldenbaum royalists changed public opinion. The people of the Empire were infuriated with the Alliance for allowing the former nobles to create a government-in-exile, and gave Lohengramm a casus belli to start a war. (LOGH: 'The Fall of Goldenbaum', 'First Battle', 'Thunder')

A previous attempt to retake Iserlohn Fortress, shortly after the civil war, had ended in failure, which caused Alliance politicians to believe in the fortress's impregnability and that Admiral Yang Wen-li would stop the Empire again. However, unbeknownst to both the Fezzani autonomous government and the Alliance leadership, Lohengramm did not intended to launch an invasion through the Iserlohn Corridor this time. The Alliance expected him to do just that, and although Yang suspected Lohengramm would use the Fezzan Corridor instead, the government refused to believe it. Although there was an old contingency plan for a defence in depth of the Alliance exit side of the Fezzan Corridor if the Empire invaded, it was no longer implementable as the Alliance had been too severely weakened by its failed invasion of the Empire and the following civil war. (LOGH: 'Operation: Ragnarök', 'Invitation to a Requiem')

Lohengramm conspired with the Fezzani ambassador on Odin, Nikolas Boltik, to gain passage for his expeditionary force through the Fezzan Corridor for the Empire to invade the Alliance. In return, Boltik would be named the planet's interim governor-general. While a fleet under High Admiral Oskar von Reuenthal besieged Iserlohn as a diversionary measure, the bulk of the expeditionary force would enter the Fezzan Corridor. (LOGH: 'Operation: Ragnarök', 'Invitation to a Requiem')

The invasion

First phase

In November and December of 798 UC (489 IC / 3598 CE), a fleet of 36,000 ships under High Admiral Reuenthal, along with Admirals Cornelius Lutz and Helmut Lennenkampf, entered the Iserlohn Corridor and attacked the Fortress as a diversion. The attack on Iserlohn was publicly announced, while the subsequent invasion through the Fezzan Corridor was not, in order to take the Alliance government and the Fezzani leadership by surprise. An attempt to enter Iserlohn as the Alliance fleet exited it to attack the Imperials was beaten back, at which point Reuenthal mainly carried out nuisance attacks. Admiral Yang, who deduced Lohengramm's plan to invade through Fezzan, made plans to evacuate, and the Reuenthal Fleet tried to hassle the evacuation preparations with its attacks. (LOGH: 'The Sounding of Gjallarhorn', 'Admiral Yang's Ark Fleet')

In early December, while the fighting at Iserlohn was raging on, the much larger Imperial force was launched from Odin to the Fezzan area. (LOGH: 'The Sounding of Gjallarhorn')

Second phase

Later that month, an Imperial fleet under High Admiral Wolfgang Mittermeyer entered the Fezzan Corridor and landed troops on the planet. The Fezzani Landesherr, Adrian Rubinsky, managed to escape to an unknown location before Imperial troops reached his residence, going into hiding. Along with the Landesherr's offices and residence, many other key locations were quickly taken over, including the Fezzan Space Navigation Bureau, which contained maps of Alliance territory. The occupation was largely bloodless, but there was an incident of some Imperial soldiers robbing and murdering a civilian woman, for which Mittermeyer had them publicly executed by firing squad. (LOGH: 'Fezzan Occupied')

The Alliance High Commissioner on Fezzan, Henslow, managed to escape with the assistance of a couple of Alliance officers. They were later smuggled back to the Alliance by an independent merchant, as the Empire had officially banned travel into Alliance space. However, the Alliance military attache, Captain Viola, along with some others, was captured and arrested by the Empire. (LOGH: 'Seeking a Free Universe')

After Duke Lohengramm's main fleet and the rest of the expeditionary force arrive on Fezzan, the Imperial military command celebrated New Year's there before beginning the invasion of Alliance territory. The first fleet, under High Admiral Mittermeyer, crossed into Alliance space on 8 January. (LOGH: 'The Cold Spell Arrives')

Meanwhile, Yang and his fleet abandoned Iserlohn on 9 January 799 UC (1 NIC / 490 IC / 3599 CE), allowing Reuenthal to enter the fortress and reclaim it for the Empire after nearly two years of it being under Alliance control. (LOGH: 'Admiral Yang's Ark Fleet')

Aftermath

A panic erupted in the Alliance after news of the Imperial occupation of Fezzan reached it, despite the Alliance government's attempts to censor it. Admiral Alexandor Bewcock was appointed to command the defence of the Alliance territory, with the only intact fleet being the 1st Fleet, with the rest having been destroyed during the disturbances of the last few years. The only exception was the Yang Fleet, but it was on its way from Iserlohn. Additionally, two new fleets were thrown together and placed under Bewcock's command, including untested new ships and local system defence squadrons. They were nonetheless outnumbered 3:1 by the Empire, and were defeated by the Imperial forces at the Battle of Rantemario. Only the timely arrival of the Yang Fleet saved Bewcock's force from complete annihilation. (LOGH: 'The Cold Spell Arrives', 'The Two-Headed Snake: The Battle of Rantemario')

Lohengramm's admirals became bogged down by a guerrilla war that Admiral Yang waged, who destroyed part of the Imperial supply fleet. It was an attempt to draw out Lohengramm himself to the battlefield and kill him. Duke Lohengramm eventually responded to him and fought in the Battle of Vermilion, where he was nearly defeated, though High Admirals Reuenthal and Mittermeyer captured Heinessen and forced the Alliance government to unconditionally surrender. Yang chose to obey the government's order to stop fighting, sparing Lohengramm. (LOGH: 'The Darkness Before Dawn', 'The Battle of Vermilion (Part One)', 'Sudden Change')

Operation Ragnarök was a major success and was the final operation of the Alliance–Imperial War, ending the conflict and resulting in the signing of the Treaty of Ba'alat, in May 799 UC (1 NIC / 490 IC / 3599 CE). Following the war, the Alliance became a client state of the Galactic Empire, and would be fully annexed after a brief second conflict a year later (which was dubbed by some as a second Ragnarök). (LOGH: 'After the Ceremony, the Curtain Rises Again...', 'Under the Golden Lion Flag', 'Ragnarök Again')

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