|LORDS OF THE EARTH 38 - THE DAWN OF CIVILIZATION|
|Newsfax Turn: #11 ( 2080 - 2076 BC )|
|November 5, 2016|
Central Mediterranean < North Africa added here
Red Sea/Arabia Centered < Dilmun moved to here
WAR FOR ELAM
(1) last turn the War For Elam didn't require resolution of simultaneous movement since the Elamite army was absent and the army of Uruk moved at will against the fixed defenses in a series of battles. Now that the war is fluid its coverage merits special treatment.
(2) three nations are involved, Uruk-Lagash vs Elam and Gutia.
(3) apologies in advance if I missed any contingencies of which there were many.
Kuda and his men cross the Tigris from Abadan and by late May have reinforced the garrison troops in Elam. Already there was ally Sin-Kasid of Ahvaz with another six hundred infantry; both forces deploy anticipating an Elamite counter-attack from Neyriz.
By the end of July an Elamite army of five thousand swordsmen and two thousand skirmishers led by King Kindattu had passed through the mountains along the Neyriz/Mand border into the Mand. They were confronted by a garrison of five newly built forts and about two thousand mixed infantry commanded by Prince Puzur-Ili of Uruk. Despite the lack of seige engineers to reduce the strongpoints Kindattu had to attack before another Urukish army arrived.
For several months the men of Elam launch ferocious assaults upon the defenses. One fort was eventually stormed by scaling ladder albeit with heavy - and unaffordable - losses. With over a thousand dead (and twice that wounded) and the campaigning season ending with autumn rains the Elamites disengage. The garrison had taken half as many casualties and felt a new confidence in themselves.
Meanwhile by late summer over 2,500 Gutian heavy infantry led by general Yakov had worked their way through the mountains along the Zagros/Elam border and enter Elam proclaiming themselves as liberators. Lacking light units to scout, they are kept informed by the locals of the disposition of the garrison. Yakov is an average general and hesitant; the Gutians eventually march to engage.
The forces of Uruk and their allies from Ahvaz are at a disadvantage having been guarding the wrong border but the men of Gutia are near the end of their strength after a long march in heavy armor and are outnumbered better than 2:1 by Kuda's army plus the garrison. After futile attempts to storm the forts are thrown back with heavy losses the Gutian army begins to disintegrate. Further thinned by archers and javelin-throwing battle cart riders (who are especially effective in the level farmland) the spearmen of Gutia are overwhelmed by masses of Urukish infantry and cut to pieces, only a few hundred escaping. The men of Uruk suffer only a third as many losses, mostly among skirmishers and cart crews whose lack of armor while closely engaging proves costly.
The victors salvage much weaponry and equipment from the battlefield and enslave hundreds of Gutian wounded who are able to walk; those who can't are put out of their misery with a swift sword thrust. A dozen locals found with Gutian coin in their possession are hung.
During the winter the king of Uruk receives news of the fighting in Mand and resolves to march there when the spring rains end. Likewise the king of Elam receives news of the fighting in Elam and resolves to leave Mand when mountain passes are clear of snow.
Leaving a garrison behind in Elam, King Kuda and ally Sin-Kasid lead their forces southward into Mand. The pace is slower due to heavy infantry from the garrison now accompanying them; it is nearly July before they reach the encampment of Prince Puzur-Ili among the remaining forts. The faster-moving Elamite force has withdrawn over the mountains towards Neyriz. Leaving Puzur-Ili to defend Mand in case the Elamites double back, Kuda and Sin-Kasid set out in pursuit.
Crossing the mountains is difficult in winter as snows deepen. Sin-Kasid is buried in an avalanche and his five hundred now-leaderless personal troops turn around and head back to Ahvaz. Kuda presses onward with his force.
By the end of April the weary Urukish army of nearly 4,500 emerges into the forested foothills of western Neyriz, where King Kindattu's rested army of nearly six thousand meets them. The terrain puts Uruk's heavy infantry and battle carts at a disadvantage, however archers inflict over two hundred casualties upon the Elamites before the armies close to melee.
The armies are well matched and the fighting is brutal. After several hours the greater numbers of the men of Elam tell and Kuda of Uruk orders the attack broken off. The disciplined Urukish withdraw toward the mountain passes in good order with skirmishers fighting a rear guard action, saving nearly 1,800 wounded but leaving nearly a thousand dead behind. The Elamites have suffered about half as many casualties and remain a force to be reckoned with; Kindattu grants the men all the battlefield loot as payment.
The Uruk army's passage over the mountains is far easlier without snow and ice. By autumn Kuda's force is camped in Mand near its garrison forts and Puzur-Ili's own encampment. The king had counted on pacifying Neyriz but realizes another attempt would result in the loss of his army. King Kindattu of Elam realizes just as clearly another assault on Mand (or Elam) would result in the loss of his army. Stalemate ensues.
Sin-Iribam becomes lord of Ahvaz when the returning warriors bring news of the death of his father Sin-Kasid in an avalanche of snow. Angry at his family's loss, Sin-Iribam declares he will no longer be an ally of Uruk, although he will continue to pay tribute.
In early autumn the Uruk army led by Kuda march north. Behind them Puzur-Ili remains watchful. The army of Elam remains in Neyriz.
Having marched through Elam, Abadan and Hahmar, King Kuda and his men reach Uruk towards the end of summer. Upon his return he marries Nita of Mand, widow of a previous Elamite king who has been anxiously awaiting his return.