Ethiopia

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Ethiopia has good GDP and good IC to manpower ratio. However, it's forces are completely disorganized and unprepared for war in 1936, therefore it must use guile and diplomacy to re-emerge as the largest independent power in Africa.

The potential upside of Ethopia is very good provided the sovereign has the vision and the temperament for a long and epic struggle.

Technology

Will need light armor right off the bat. The initial emphasis must be on doctrines as one will need hightened organization in order to stand toe-to-toe with Italy. Doctrine focus should be on Blitzkrieg(1),

Then, depending on the long term strategy, emphisis should be placed on militia and artillery tech, then rocket tech when that becomes available.

Depending on long-term strategy, Ethopia may need to develop a heavy lift capability. This will require infantry techs (for paratroops), and essential medium and strategic bomber techs in order to construct transports.

Distribution of Leadership

Leadership should focus entirely on research, that is, after the requisite number of spies are produced to begin the process of lowering neutrality. The exception is during the mobilization phase, when all leadership should be concentrated on officer training.

Diplomacy

The sovereign should start by making peace with Italy, as there is really little other choice. At this point, one must decide whether to join the Allies or Axis, or to go independent. Carefully weigh the goals and benefits prior to making a decision.

Alliances

One can begin aligning immediately to the Allies and then enter the war in 1939 as an allied minor. Otherwise, lull the Italians into a false sence of security by aligning to the Axis. One can join the Axis and creating havoc in Africa for the Allies, or be an Ally and continue the war against Italy.

Independence is the road less traveled, and requires much long-term planning. Until Italy's surrender, Ethiopia could align towards the COMMENTERN, or form an independent alliance with a seagoing power such as Saudi Arabia or Persia. The conquest of a small seagoing power is the only way Ethiopia can gain its much needed sea port, and a chance at further greatness.

Decisions

After the Italians are swept from the horn of Africa, Ethiopia can begin looking towards an independent alliance with Saudi Arabia or Persia. If going this direction take care to insure one's policies and politics are in alignment with the partner(s).

If Ethiopia takes the lone-wolf approach, the only option is to develop a heavy-lift capability as soon as possible in order to land paratoops in the conquest of Saudi Arabia.

Politics

Ministers

Laws

Political Parties

Intelligence

Economy

Ethiopia will need to sell a large quantity of supplies to avoid going broke, so begin by making either France or UK a major trading partner. Effect a balance-of-trade policy with your major trading partner, that is, buy all your needed resources from your major tading partner in order to return some of the cash they used to buy your supplies. This will keep the trading going for long enough for your country to get on its feet financially.


Trading

South Africa and Liberia are the only nations in Africa to trade with, and neither have enough resources to fuel Ethiopia's war machine. Acquiring a port of trade is the long term strategy, but do not assume that will happen any time soon.

Industrial Production

IMPORTANT: Before making peace with Italy, select War Economy. This setting will be used for the entire inter-war period, which is another reason why Ethiopia needs a major trading partner.

Military

There are plenty of land leaders and reserve manpower for a professional army. However, as these forces will be operating mostly in mountains and deserts with low-infrastructure, Ethiopia should elect to go with a militia army to ease any potential supply distribution problems.

The reserve army of three (3) full corps of volunteers should be ready to campaign within a few years. But, they should be built in stealth mode by keeping all new units in the disbursement queue so they're not visible to the Italian AI.

Army

Begin by de-commissioning all regular brigades, as this will free up much needed IC's that otherwise would have gone to consumer goods for the army. However, do retain the Imperial Guard as they make excellent commandos (Inf+MP). Minimum requirements call for two stacks of offensive militia (5x 2Mil+Art) to assault Ed, and one stack of offensive militia to capture Muqdishu. Also, build a couple of road-hogs (LPz+Cav) to cut-off stray Italian divisions to the north of Muqdishu in the horn of Africa.

Navy

A port must be owned, not simply occupied in order to start building transports.

Air Force

A heavy-lift capability will be needed to effect a "Lone-wolf" strategy.

War

Once the Italians are committed in Greece, or just as the Germans enter France from Belgium, Ethopia should immediately begin deploying its newly reconstituted forces. Deploy no later than mid-February 1940, and mobilize by Mid-March.

The occupation of either Ed and Mogidshu is a tactical victory, but to actually own the port you must annex it. It will be a long wait until Italy's surrender, so plan on some kind of campaign to keep your forces active in the mean time.

War with Italy

In order to conquer a useful port, you must attack Italy before they have joined the war against the Allies. Otherwise, British and French troops will occupy the ports of Ed and Mogidshu long before your militia arrive. Therefore, your campaign against the Italians should begin no later than early-to-mid June 1940. DONT FORGET TO CEASE ALIGNMENT TOWARDS THE AXIS BEFORE YOUR DOW.

Gaming the System

See Also

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