Yes yet another timeline involving World War 3, I will look a certain assumptions what would be targeted during a nuclear strike. I will look at targeting and what factors could drive that targeting. I also am going to look at the struggle that was going on behind the scenes of the Politburo during this time and show how it could affect the Soviet Union during a crisis. As well as the pushing and shoving going on between the Republican and Democratic parties when a major crisis erupts during an election year as well as other factors all hopefully will push the story in the right direction. This is a first effort show we hope to produce a good alternate time line. i would like to hear what people think about what i write and the direction its going. TIMELINE ALTERNATE HISTORY A STRATEGIC DECISION CHAPTER 1 A STRATEGIC DECISION CHAPTER 1 May 12th 1983 A voice in Russian was reading a transcript of Reagan speaking to a group of military officers and an assortment of civilian specialists, ”Ladies and Gentlemen, I appreciate the effort you have went to in going over the current strategic doctrine and the modifications that you decided were absolutely necessary. This review has been necessary for a long time and your group stood up to the challenges. The idea of having a reserve located our land base missile silos, has been obsolete since the deployment of the SS-18 Satan’s. Now with guidance from your group we have finally faced the reality. Transferring our strategic reserve to the submarine forces is the best way to go and using those submarines that have been converted to the Trident missile the right decision we will be converting the missiles over to their new missions over the next few months. We all know that the Tridents are not as accurate as the Minutemen but it will be so very much harder to find and that also to kill. While at the same time we will be changing the targeting of missiles in the former strategic reserve to other strategic missions.” The voice ceased speaking for a moment and then it began again,”We must attempt to keep our decisions secret so that the Soviet Union does not retarget it’s missiles from our silos to other targets. Imagine the untold additional millions of victims of World War 3 there would be if the Soviet Union shifted the warheads targeted on those silos to other targets. I do regret the decision to keep this plan secret and in doing so guaranteeing the deaths of all those good and loyal citizens but this must the path we take. But we must make it clear that from now on a bolt from the blue like the Soviet Union has contemplated from time to time will not have quite the success they envision. Because our missiles will be in the air by the time thier missiles arrive. With that the very short speech came to an end. Yuri Andropov, could not believe the gall of that man Reagan, angrily he commented, “He accuses us of plotting to launch a bolt out of the blue while their hands are clean. He tells the world we are the dangerous ones but we know that he is the first president in my memory that is fully capable of launching a bolt out of the blue. Even Nixon with all of his sly maneuvering would not contemplate such an act. Then in an explosion of rage Andropov slammed his hand on the table. Some feared that Andropov would have an heart attack others were sort of hoping he would so that they could begin to maneuver for who would be the next First Secretary. It was no secret that Andropov favored Gorbachev the hardliners were less enthused about him. Just who should replace Andropov no one was sure but the hardliners were of the opinion that anyone other than Gorbachev were in the ascendance. Everyone noted how Andropov pulled a bottle out of his pocket and watched him take a pill and then a drink to wash it down. The big question was whether he would last a year or would it be two. No one was certain but everyone was pretty sure it would not be three. Another member of the Politburo, asked a question of Andropov, “Comrade First Andropov how reliable are the sources that provided the transcript we were read today?” Andropov had no problem with the question the reliability of the people who gathered intelligence for them. The reliability of the agent who gathered the intelligence was always in question to one degree or another. Then without really thinking he replied, “Both are very good and both are in the White House, they both stole the same information. They just did not realized that they had done that since neither one realizes that the other exists. Andropov suddenly laughed, that caught everyone by surprise. What he did not realize that the pills were strong and really quick acting. Suddenly Andropov commented the one is an agent planted inside the Republican party he an party apparatchik planted in the sixties. The other is extremely reliable.” Then Victor Chebrikov started to cough and Andropov realized that the pill had loosened him tongue a bit too much. Angry at himself for allowing the drug to open his mouth, he commented, “We don’t need to tell anyone that we have two agents planted inside the White House. I am sure that you all understand.” Then the briefing officer from the Strategic Rocket Force was shown in. He was direct and to the point, one of the younger members of the Politburo wondered if someone had spoken to the briefer about the Politburo lack of ability to engage in long meetings. The officer went to the heart of the matter, Comrade Chairman and members of the Politburo; with the Americans decision to launch their land base ICBM’s on warning essentially renders the missiles we have targeted against the missile silos to state of useless. The only way an attack on their missile silos would succeed would be that the entire American warning system is render useless or for the president in charge to fail to launch on warning. But we feel that the US military would then take matters into their own hands. With that Minister of Defense Ustinov asked to be allowed to bring in a briefer to talk about the new intelligences. The briefer had been told to go straight to the heart of the matter. So he immediately started his briefing. “The new reality is that we will launch our strike force and the Americans will launch theirs and we will destroy a lot of empty holes in the ground. Our silos that have a cold launch system that we can repair and reuse after a few days. But the American silos after launching their missiles will have to be rebuilt and that takes a lot of time. So while it makes sense for the Americans to hit our silo full or empty for us. For our missiles if the missile is not in the silo then what is the point of targeting the silo in the first place. The fact of the matter is if the American missile is already launch the silo rendered useless until it has been refitted which takes a considerable degree of time if it could be done in a post nuclear situation.” This means that our primary silo killer is the R-36; it was designed to destroy hardened targets like missile silos. With two R-36 missiles working in tandem using the twenty warheads, they carry between them. They can target ten silos with a high degree of confidence in destroying at least eight out of ten silos. With the Americans decision to shift the location of their strategic reserve to their submarine forces and with the launch on warning of the their ground force missiles we now have the capability to destroy eight out of ten empty smoking holes in the ground with the odd American missile that failed to launch. Now possibly future president of the United States might not be capable of launching the missiles but who believes that Reagan will not do so. “The members of the Central Committee grimly considered that bit of information. Then the briefer went on to say, “We also know that with their Looking Glass in the air at all times that officer can take action if he loses contact with the President. I imagine the ground for loss of contact is pretty broad.” Then the briefer paused for a breath,” Now the bulk of our R-36 missile force to test them out in a few war-gaming scenarios. “ He paused for a second to judge the reaction of the listening members of the Central Committee, some looked interested, others bored and a few looked like they were nodding off but on the bright side Chief Marshall of Artillery Vladimir Tolubko looked pleased and he was not a member of the Central Committee but he was the briefer’s commander and if he was happy so was the briefer. But he decided to bring the briefing to a quick end. “So the Central Committee has two choices one keep the current battle plan as is and hope we catch the American missile force on the ground, it is the considered opinion of the Strategic Rocket Forces as very unlikely. The second is to change our plans and cease targeting all or most of the American ground based missile forces. If you do the latter we would need to come up with a new attack plan. So we propose that the Strategic Rocket force with the aid of the officers from both the bomber forces and the Navy we will study a few plans and test them out in few war games for the next three months so that we can assess which battle plan would work the best. That is should the Central Committee decided to change the current plans.” Then the briefer sat down. Chief Marshall of Artillery Tolubko looked around at the members of the Politburo and he decided to make a point. “Let me tell you just how much it affects us, the bolt from the blue attack cannot be considered to be nearly as effective as it would have been before this new policy of the Americans. While we must still fear such an assault upon Rodina Mat. There are now no American strategic reserve on land and the Americans can maintain at least a ninety-six or seven percent of their thousand plus minuteman missiles on full alert. The Titan missiles are vulnerable but the Americans are slowly but surely taking them out of service. If we were to launch an out of the blue, of the minutemen missile about forty missile will be nonoperational for repair and refurbishment and perhaps another forty or so missile will fail to launch for one reason or another, but about nine hundred and twenty missile will launch instead of the six or seven hundred before. We will still catch up to two thirds of the B-52 and FB-111’s on the ground and between one half and a third of the American missile subs in port as well as any of the missiles that failed to launch. But the day the new American plan went into effect, the bolt out of the blue attack was three hundred fewer missiles and the warheads that they carry will be targeted on targets here in the Soviet Union. That is no small number of missiles. One other little point the retaliatory of the Americans will be that much more accurate than the trident missiles that would have been launched from the missile boats. While the submarine launched missiles in the American strategic reserve will be less accurate. The other fact to consider is if the Americans launch a bolt out of the blue of their own. We would still be facing the same situation only with only a handful of bombers on the Ground and only submarines we will catch will be the ones that were under repair or refit.” Then another member of the Poliburo commented that perhaps it would be best that they have the officers of the Strategic Missile Force do a study and come up with some proposals for the Politburo to study. That comment was well received but it for him a more practical goal, bringing this meeting to an end so that he could go home and rest. In the end it was the consensus of the Politburo that they wait to see what kind of plan would replace the current war plans. General Secretary Andropov considered the request and he decided to light a fire under the General Staffs asses. He commented, “With a considerable proportion of the Soviet Missile Forces were now targeting what will be empty smoking holes in the ground before our missiles arrive to make those holes even larger smoking holes in the ground. For that reason alone I believe that our targeting the American Missile Silos is a total waste of time. Then he went on to say, “But to have the some of the best officers in the Soviet Strategic Rocket Forces sitting around playing games for three months was ridiculous.” But at the same time they did need some time to plan and he suspected that they had in the past two week already done some planning already that is if they were somewhat competent. No one else was speaking; they were waiting so see what he was going to do. He paused for a second as spasm of pain hit his body; it was not all that bad so he did not reach for a pain pill. He did not want to show any more weakness, since all that would cause was even more maneuvering amongst the men seeking to replace him. He gathered his strength and then he spoke, “With so much of our strategic nuclear strike forces aimed at silos when we launch but be empty holes when our missiles arrive. We don’t have three months or even one month. But I do recognize that this planning will take some time so I will suggest that the General Staff has months to come up with good plan. BUT FOR THE TIME BEING WE NEED SOMETHING THAT WILL DO THE JOB UNTIL A BETTER PLAN IS READY. I realize that it will not be the best plan. But one that will work well enough while the planners continue to look for the best plan. While your engaged in producing a new plan the Politburo will be waiting for you to tell us what your knew plan is.” Andropov looked around the room at the other member of the Politburo and they all nodded their heads and his suggestion was agreed to. He looked at the briefer and he told him,” You will have a month.” All the briefer could do nod his head and return to the rest of the officers in his department then he would tell them what had happened. After that they all would go to the bar and drink a lot of vodka. Then tomorrow they would start coming up with good temporary plan. As he walked out he decided that Yuri Antipov, had already put a plan of sorts together and it was not in his mind not half bad. He had not really talked about with anyone else about the plan, but he decided that he and Yuri would try to sell the plan to the others in their group. That way they could at least have something more or less ready in a month. Gorbachev watched as various members of the Poliburo were helped out of their chairs by staff members the Soviet Union was being run by a bunch of Geriatric men whose time had past. It was no wonder that while everyone knew that change had to happen no one was willing to actually make any changes. One he became General Secretary he was going to do what was needed to reform the system and of that he had no doubt.