Sentinel

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Tactical Analysis

  • A Guard Against The Enemy: The best of the Unionists' Civil Defense Force called in via the Frontline protocol, Sentinels are the commanders of local units equipped with high explosive grenade launchers. These weapons wreck enemy vehicles, and suppress enemy infantry in the blast radius.
  • A Shining Beacon: Sentinels are trained in the use of spotting beacons for friendly artillery. Broadcasting a radio signal, the Sentinel must first set up the beacon for it to be effective. During this set up, both they and the beacon are vulnerable to enemy attack. After deployment the beacon is stealthed, but can still be revealed and destroyed by the enemy.
  • Feet of Clay: Sentinels might have better training, but their grenade launchers can only fire a round at a time and they have no other weapons. Anything heavier than a walker will easily kill them. Also, they are only available via the Frontline protocol.
  • Keys to the Kingdom: Particularly renowned Sentinels are equipped with Allied-supplied grenade launchers and radio transmitters. This gives them an increased rate of fire and the ability to instantly call down bombardments without setting up a beacon.

Background

While a strong proportion of the Civil Defense Forces are veterans, there are still many who have never served a day in the military. These individuals would be little better than Soviet conscripts in battle, serving as cannon fodder to soak up enemy fire and distract the enemy. To the Unionist leadership, this is an insult. Every fighting man and woman should be able to make the most of their time under arms, no matter their previous experience. While there was the opinion that all these green GIs needed was an enhanced form of training, this was denied. Training is only part of the struggle, the real key is in experienced leadership. Those capable of assuming command roles in battle that can guide these inexperienced squads to victory over any foe.

With luck, one of the best National Guard units in the United States was able to fill this void. The 69th New York had fought hard in WWII, the "Fighting 69th" winning against stubborn Soviet defenses in North Korea at the outskirts of Pyongyang and against a massed Chinese counter-offensive along the Yalu River. These victories, coupled with the unit's long standing reputation as one of the hardest fighting units of the US Army, bred experienced and capable soldiers. Soldiers that were perfect for what the Unionists needed to lead the untested CDF to victory. Asking for their assistance in "training", the 69th lent several NCOs and officers to one of the Unionist training weekends to give them the context they'd gained from fighting the Soviets both abroad and at home. Then they came back and encouraged more of their unit to join the next weekend. Soon, almost all of the 69th were assisting the Unionists in New York during their training weekends.

This sent shockwaves through the New York area. The 69th wasn't just a National Guard unit, it was a cultural institution. It was bad enough that the Confederates were drawing in veterans out West, now the Unionists were taking in active duty soldiers in the East? Editorial letters flew demanding answers and investigations. Congressmen appeared on the news asking whether or not the Unionists were becoming a part of the military apparatus, and the dangerous effects that could have. In a joint statement, the US National Guard command and Unionist leadership established that as long as the actions of the National Guard members of the Unionists were not in direct violation of their standing orders from their superiors in the state and military leadership, then there was no clear reason to stop the 69th or other National Guard units to partake in Unionist activities.

Now, these members of the 69th are common sights among Unionist gatherings. Though not officially present in their capacities as members of the National Guard, there in an implied consent that the National Guard not only approves of the Unionists, but will actively support them.

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American Unionist Civil Defense Force
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