59th Brigade (SLDF)
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|Unit Profile (as of 2588)|
|Parent Formation||20th Division|
The Fifty-Ninth Brigade was a part of the Star League Defense Force Regular Army. It was originally formed during the creation of the SLDF between 2571 and 2575, and was a part of the 20th Division during the Reunification War, where it served in the Magistracy of Canopus campaign from 2577 to 2588.
As a part of the Magistracy of Canopus task force, the 59th was stationed on Tellman's Mistake alongside the other elements of the 20th Division when military action against the Magistracy began. The Commanding Officer of VII Corps, Captain-General Marion Marik, would often assign a division or more of troops to the conquest of various worlds by drawing together brigades from across VII Corps. The 59th often operated in conjunction with other brigades from VII Corps as well as fighting alongside units from the Free Worlds League Military assigned to the task force as auxiliary forces.
The 59th Brigade assault on Vakarel was the last of the planetary invasions assigned by the task force in the first year of the war. The 59th quickly forced the defending Mieselsen's Marauders to retreat, but securing the various mining operations within the system's asteroid belts was another matter entirely; forced to navigate within the asteroid fields hampered sensor performance and maneuverability, and the bulk of the combat action fell to the marine detachments aboard the various SLDF WarShips while the majority of the 59th remained aboard their DropShips waiting for the rare call for them to deploy their firepower. Despite the asteroid clearance work being tedious and time-consuming, the 59th Brigade declared that the system had been occupied on the 11th of November 2577.
It came as a great shock to the 59th and their WarShip escorts when the combined MAF 1st and 2nd Fleets jumped in-system to launch a counter-attack on the 14th of November. This was the first time the MAF navy had attacked an SLDF formation, and the two fleets represented every MAF capital ship not permanently assigned to guarding key worlds. The combined force pressed the SLDF forces hard, striking throughout the system. The SLDF naval flotilla had been operating in small formations to clear the system, and suffered significant losses at the hands of the Canopian navy; one detachment alone lost a corvette and five JumpShips as well as two battalions of embarked troops from the 59th. The SLDF WarShips, fighters and DropShips managed to drive the MAF ships off, but not before the Canopians had bloodied VII Corps and the 59th.
In contrast with the problems caused by the ambush at Vakarel, the 59th Brigade deployment to capture Bethonolog in 2578 was relatively easy, albeit unconventional. The 59th landed ahead of the 60th Brigade and prepared to assault the Canopian positions on the planet, only to receive a message from the local militia Colonel stating that while he intended to resist the invasion, he wanted permission to wait until the 26th of December so that the people of Bethonolog could enjoy the various religious holidays falling at that time of year. General Mancini of the 59th agreed, and sent the militia colonel a Christmas pudding as a gift; the Colonel reciprocated by sending General Mancini a bottle of local wine and a turkey. A week of half-hearted clashes between the militia and the 59th began during the New Year period, satisfying the honor of both sides, and the 59th took control of Bethonolog on the 9th of January 2579.
The MAF had managed to surprise and outfox the SLDF task force several times in the opening years of the war, and as a result the SLDF timetable slowed as Captain-General Marik built up her forces for the next major invasions. In addition to refitting and rearming VII Corps and the FWLM regiments acting in support, Marik targeted two worlds each year for invasion, consolidating gains as part of a slow encirclement of the Magistracy capital world of Canopus IV. The 59th was involved in one of these four campaigns; in January 2580, the 59th landed on Gallis alongside the 2nd Oriente Hussars and the Juggernaut Regiment of the Stewart Dragoons, clashing with the 3rd Canopian Light Horse and Buquoy's Bandits, the personal command of the MAF commander, Colonel Adam Buquoy. In what would be the standard pattern of warfare for the MAF when defending worlds during 2580-2581, the two Canopian regiments did their best to sting the 59th and the supporting Marik regiments before retreating ahead of any effective retaliation, saving their strength for later battles.
The SLDF launched their attack on Royal Foxx in March 2582; defending Royal Foxx were the 1st and 4th Canopian Light Horse, who faced the combined forces of the 59th Brigade and the 61st and 62nd Royal Brigades. Despite being outnumbered more than four to one the two Chasseurs á Cheval regiments contested the invasion of Royal Foxx, but were forced to withdraw by the end of March. In securing Royal Foxx, the SLDF locked down trade routes across a large region of the Magistracy and opened up easy access to the more lightly defended outback worlds of the Magistracy.
Megarez & Krimari
Megarez was an agrarian world of little strategic importance, but it had been used by the Magistracy Armed Forces to billet units between raids on SLDF garrisons on occupied Magistracy worlds or supply worlds within the Free Worlds League. While no major units were stationed on Megarez when the 59th Brigade and the 401st Independent Regiment arrived to conquer the world in early 2583, it took the 59th weeks to locate all of the various hidden camps established around Megarez and winkle out the handful of defenders still on the world. The 59th Brigade action on Megarez was followed by another planetary campaign a few months later, deploying with two FWLM regiments and the 401st Independent Regiment to conquer the world of Krimari, another minor world and one of a number of worlds targetted by a jubilant SLDF in a wave of attacks after the destruction of the Canopian navy at Thurrock. The combined forces of the 59th and their auxiliary forces forced the defending 4th Canopian Light Horse to retreat, and the 59th would remain on Krimari until 2585. Although the 401st weren't involved in the campaign for Krimari, the regiment would deploy alongside the 59th Brigade for the remainder of the war.
Techne's Revenge was targeted by the SLDF in 2585 following the capture of Canopus IV the previous year. Techne's Revenge had no major MAF units in place as garrison forces and was conquered quickly by the 59th and 401st with only a token resistance offered by local forces.
Wildwood & Hardcore
One of the closing actions of the war, the conquest of Wildwood by the 59th in 2577 saw the brigade facing Buquoy's Bandits for the second time, along with the 2nd Canopian Light Horse. The MAF was still contesting the invasion of as many worlds as possible, but victory for the SLDF was no longer in question at this point in the war; landing with the 401st Independent Regiment and the 2nd Oriente Hussars, the 59th forced both MAF regiments to retreat and quickly occupied the world. The campaign on Wildwood made the 59th one of very few units within the SLDF task force to face all four regiments of the Chasseurs á Cheval in combat during the course of the war.
In contrast with the battle for Wildwood, the campaign in 2588 to capture the world of Hardcore was only a minor challenge; another world with no defending MAF units, the local militia couldn't resist the combined attention of the 56th Brigade, the 59th and the 401st Independent Regiment in 2588 and quickly surrendered in the penultimate battle of the Reunification War for the Magistracy.
At the outbreak of the Reunification War the 58th Brigade was commanded by General Mancini.
Despite the doctrine and organization originally defined during the creation of the SLDF, most SLDF brigades were a mélange of combined arms units. The breakdown for the SLDF element of the Canopian task force indicates that just under a half of the SLDF regiments were BattleMech regiments, one-third were infantry regiments and the remaining forces were a mix of armor and AeroSpace regiments.
- VII Corps units may utilize Overrun Combat.
- VII Corps units gain a +1 bonus to repair rolls.
- The VII Corps commander may select half of the maps used in any battle, irrespective of scenario rules.
- VII Corps units adhere to the Ares Conventions.
- VII Corps units suffer a -2 penalty to Initiative if forced to fight on city maps.
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 148, "Magistracy of Canopus Front (Jump-Off-2582)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 149, "Magistracy of Canopus Front (2583-2588)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 98, "Butzfleth and Vakarel (October-November 2577)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 150, "Magistracy of Canopus Front (Jump-Off-2582)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 101, "Eleusis, Obrenovac and Bethonolog (March 2579-January 2580)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 101, "Gallis, Aspropirgos, Fanardir and Borgan's Rift (January 2580-October 2581)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 101, "Reversals (2582-2583)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 102, "Afarsin, Adherlwin, Megarez and Nobel (March-April 2583)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 103, "Endgame (2583-2584)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 151, "Magistracy Of Canopus Front (2583-2588)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 105, "Mopping Up (2584-2588)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 27, "Divisions and Brigades"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 95, "SLDF Task Force Canopus"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 181, "The Star League"