Things are starting to get interesting for Carthaginian plans for dominance of the Mediterranean as we reach a critical phase in our campaign. Our lands stretch from western Africa to the borders of Egypt. We have extended our holdings on the Spanish peninsula to encapsulate the old provinces once controlled by the now subjugated Spanish and Gallic tribes. Whilst war has been declared, currently our forces have yet to engage the Britannic tribes whose expansionist drive through Western Europe crashed into the Pyrenees Mountains. British warbands patrol the mountain crossings and our attention and military might is focused elsewhere, leaving Osca in North-East Spain a target for the barbaric Britons. Our meagre armies in Spain have been raised to a high state of readiness to counter any attempts by Britannia to cross over the mountains into our territory.
To the east, Egyptian armies amass in the desert. Their intent; a conquest of Libya. Milkherem Tunis, adopted son of our great leader Husdrubal the Cunning, at the head of 1070 men, has been rushed to relieve his cousin and son of Bomikar, Carthalo Sabrata. Carthalo Sabrata remains vigilant in command of 1400 battle hardened troops, awaiting the impending Egyptian attack. Current reports indicate a force of close to 5000 Egyptians in the deserts outside of Siwa. Their numbers are many, ours relatively few. Our only hope is that the timely arrival of Milkherem Tunis will sway the upcoming battle for Siwa in our favour.
Safe, thousands of leagues away in our majestic capital of Carthage, Hasdrubal has been quick to issue a decree calling for the raising of legion upon legion of fighting men and war machines to take the campaign into Egypt and secure the Nile Delta for the Glory of Carthage. Only through conquest will we gain peace in the east. With time and good luck Egypt will fall, but time is something we lack. If Siwa falls to the Pharaoh our plans will be disrupted and decades of planning will be for nothing.
As if the Carthaginian military wasnâ€™t stretched enough, our foothold on the Italian peninsula is threatened by the growing influence of the House of Julii. They are all that remains of the three great Roman families. Brutii men, women and children were massacred in their thousands when we conquered the cities of Croton and Tarentum, and the Scipii cower behind the walls of Capua. The Julii are all the only threat we face in taking all of Italy for ourselves, but what a threat they are! Our great cities in Scilia and Sardinia are raising what armies they can to support the war effort, and a Council of War recently decreed that a bold invasion of Latium from the sea and the conquest of Rome itself would be a death blow to Roman designs on our Italian colonies.
With the Brutii crushed in Italy our forces made landfall in Greece and seized the settlement of Apollonia from the Brutii remnant. Relations with the Greek City States and Macedon remain peaceful. Our spy network has infested the Greek peninsula and will give us adequate notice of an attack from either of these two powerful factions. We can only hope that the bitter enmity they have for each other will be enough for them to ignore our foothold in Greece. We can ill afford a fourth war-front to be opened at this critical stage. In his infinite wisdom, Hasdrubal has decreed that we are to remain out of Greek affairs for the foreseeable future. We maintain trade agreements with our neighbours but a recent Macedonian enquiry into an alliance was politely but firmly refused.
Now I must return to Siwa. The Egyptians will attack. It is but a matter of when. Hasdrubal has made it clear that my reports on the military strength of Egypt and their ability to wage war are critical to his plans!
An update! We have wonderful news from Spain and Libya.
At Taraconenis in the foothills of the Pyrenees, our scouts detected a column of Britons numbering over 1100 bloodthirsty troops making for Osca. Captain Gelan of the XII Carthaginian Light Cavalry volunteered to lead a small force to meet the invaders head on. Four hundred horsemen with cold fire in their hearts rode out to meet nearly thrice their number in the ferocious barbarian horde. The midday sun beat down upon the men and beasts arrayed to meet the invaders as Gelan raised the spirits of his men with a rousing speech. Battle was joined as the thunder of hooves drowned out the war cries of the barbarians. Gelan lead from the front. His loyal compatriots smashed into the right wing of the enemy formation routing those arrayed against him. The Longshields rode around the back of the tightly packed enemy spearmen and hit them from behind. The men returning from battle tell a tale of the enemy melting away as if ice in a furnace. Within minutes the invaders were fleeing before the ferocity of the attack. Not one barbarian lived to take news of the savagery back to their masters. Gelan was last seen leading his victorious horsemen over the Pyrenees and into the unknown lands beyond…
At Siwa, Milkherem Tunis made his way south from the coast as the Egyptians organised for an assault on the city. At the sight of our glorious reinforcements, the Egyptians decided that discretion was the better part of valour and fled back to their homeland! Bolstered by the cowardice of the foe, Tunis and his cousin threw open the city gates and gave chase. This is truly a great day for Carthage!!
Your Servant, Callimachus of Cyrene