Stupid Luck and Happenstance, Thread III

“You are an important regional ally is about to get hammered because Martinez wants to make a point before be is willing to sit down and begins negotiations” Rockefeller stated, “And suggesting that we sit on our hands.”
This sentence sounds wrong. I think you're missing a few words in here.
“In this game, all it takes is mere suspicion to cause someone to clean house and the Germans are as ruthless at that as they are with anything else” Church said, “And we had to work for years to cultivate our current asset. One wrong move and he in spending the rest of his career counting penguins at Wilhelm Station if he is lucky, and that is only if the German BII or BND doesn’t have enough to throw him into a dark hole from which no one emerges.”
What's this?:eek: An American spy in Germany! Don't the Germans have that one spy in the FBI? I forgot.
Nella just sipped a cup of hot chocolate while looking at the various wares that were on display.
Traditional Christmas Market drinks in Germany would be Glühwein (mulled wine) and Punsch (or Punch to use the English spelling - double checking wiki tells me to specify that the English call it that, the Americans think of something different). I don't think I've ever seen hot chocolate around the parts I've been to. (Though I've got to admit they might sell them at those sweets-to-go stands, instead of the drinks stands and I've just not noticed). Or it might be a thing somewhere North of Munich...

(And it's quite normal to stay in the area around the drinks stand to drink those, and socialise. Not least because of the horrendous collateral you pay for your mugs. Tourist like to take them with them after all.)


Othala hot chocolate has been available in Christman markets for a long timr often in the form of Lumumba (with rum) so ordering a Lumumba without rum et voila.
This update reminded me of the Hallmark Channel, its' Christmas in July.
The fact that Frank Church is the National Security Advisor to President Rockefeller just confirms my thinking that there is a Bipartisan Consensus in foreign policy that sees Germany not as an enemy or as an adversary but as a rival to the United States in expanding commerce and influence to other nations.
Nella and Nan are at that age when going to the Christmas Market at Alexander Platz Market is considered to be "only for Babies" but it won't be Christmas with them going to it so maybe starting next year they bring their school friends to go ice skating at the outdoor rink among other things.
The spy that the United States has in Berlin could be a double agent feeding enough correct information so that the United States doesn't make any wrong decisions that could lead to even bigger problems between the United States and Germany.
Well, if you're older, sure, but under 10 years... even in germany you don't get alcoholic drinks then.
Most variants of Punsch are non-alcoholic. Though of course, there are enough stands where you have to be specific about that. (Also not sure about Nella's age here, she reads as a teenager in many ways. If she is 14 under family supervision...)

Othala hot chocolate has been available in Christman markets for a long timr often in the form of Lumumba (with rum) so ordering a Lumumba without rum et voila.
Wasn't familiar with that one.

Goes further down the rabbit hole. Wait... Damn, long standing translation error on my part. Hot chocolate != Trinkschokolade. Hot chocolate = Kakao...

(Damn, and I've been wondering at times how the Americans in fiction made that stuff that often, uncaring of the mess they were making, without looking further into it.)

Right, I'll mostly withdraw my objection. Still thinking that Punsch might or might not be the more 'traditional' drink, but I'll acknowledge that this ATL Berlin isn't Austria or South Germany, so I have no real idea.

Back to Lumumba however. I'm not sure about geography of that one. I've found indicators that it's more a North German thing, no the other hand it seems to also have been a thing in some Viennese Kaffeehäuser. Weird. And not exactly my taste, so I'm not sure if that's an indicator of anything but my own blind spots.

Well, if it exists, it's likely under a different name in any case. Or maybe not, considering TTL conservation of personalities.


Well of course there are regional differences. Even if for an American Germany seems like a small country there are a lot of people inside.

One small correction legal age for wine and beer in Germany is 16 for strong spirits it is 18.
Part 125, Chapter 2107
Chapter Two Thousand One Hundred Seven

24th December 1971

Paso de San Francisco, Argentine-Chilean Frontier

It was a real kick to the head what had happened.

Because the 1st Platoon of the 7th Recon’s Dragoon Company had been in Argentina since the start of the conflict and had an exemplary combat record from the siege of Rio Gallegos and in campaign that had followed, they had been given the option of going home early. No one had taken Headquarters up on that offer. It was like something from a movie. They had been there from the start, and they wanted to be there at the end.

For Manny, it was a stressful situation. The men of the Platoon had put a lot of faith in his leadership and all he could do was make continuing decisions as best he could and hope that it wasn’t misplaced. What had happened when he had come back from leave spent at Martzel Iberia’s house in the Rio Negro Valley didn’t help matters.

The Chilean Army had stolen a page from the Heer when they decided to launch a counter offensive just after Christmas, not to change the course of the war, but to slow it down. Hopefully buying their political leaders the time to negotiate a better peace deal than they might otherwise have gotten. What they didn’t know was that the BND’s Signal Intelligence Section had cracked the Chilean Army’s codes and knew what the next play was. When President Martinez had been informed, he had said that he wanted to use this as a chance to kick the Chilean’s teeth in. While Manny had his reservations about the course of action that Martinez was demanding, he did admire the decisive manner in which the Argentine President ordered the Army Group that had defended the nation’s critical oil refineries on the Pacific Coast earlier in the war. He had not so jokingly said that the operation had no name, just what roughly translated to “Happy Christmas, Motherfuckers” before he had placed General Tilo Schultz in overall Command. The goal was not to take the pass, but to smash the Army Group on the other side of it.

Their own 4th Panzer Division was to be near the tip of the spear and that had necessitated Manny’s Platoon being deployed well ahead of the main advance. They had come in on foot the day before to the flanks of Cerro San Francisco, the extinct volcano that shared its name with the pass carrying as much ammunition, water and whatever else they thought they might need, as they could carry.

Spread out below them had was the Chilean Army Group that had been massing here. Their goal was to remain undetected until the main attack started, then they were to coordinate air and artillery strikes after having mapped the pass. The fact that they were way out here on the sharp end was not lost on anyone. If things got hairy, then it would the 32 of them against whatever the Chilean Army could throw at them. Manny didn’t like those odds and neither had anyone else. That was why he had had gotten no static when he had done his level best to get them to make themselves invisible. Manny saying that he would personally skin alive whoever allowed themselves to be silhouetted, and had not been joking, might have had something to do with that.

That was way, his Platoon had spent all of Christmas Eve in foxholes covered by sheets of plywood covered in earth trying to draw as little attention to themselves as possible. Manny had worked all day to map out the opposing trench system. The heat of the day had vanished swiftly, the clear skies and high altitude of around five thousand meters saw to that.

Earlier that evening, they had heard the sound of engines revving as the Panzers had moved into place from Fiambala. Manny had recognized SPz IVs and Leopard IIs in the distance around sunset but knew that when it came to the initial assault on the trench system, they would be a part of the force that would exploit the breach in the lines. It would probably be the regular Argentine Infantry, for political reasons, in conjunction with the Storm Pioneers who tore the hole. That was why Manny had not been surprised to see the modified Bergepanzers used by the GS, the turretless Panzers employing the most dangerous weapon to a soldier in a trench, a bulldozer blade. Trenches, barbed wire, and landmines tended to be useless against their advance. It was said that if the GS were in the field, digging a trench was effectively digging your own grave and the Storm Pioneers would be more than happy to fill it in for you.

As the minutes ticked down to Two O’clock in the morning. Manny found himself unable to sleep. Ralf, who he was sharing a hole with was fidgeting around and keeping him awake, while Christian was snoring softly. This was one of the rare times that Manny envied Christian.

Once they started directing the artillery fire, the Chileans would swiftly figure it out. It was the space of time between them and when reinforcements arrived when Manny expected his Platoon to really get hammered.

Sliding out of his hole, Manny crawled to the next hole over. Einar and Brodbeck were sharing this one.

“It is about to get hot around here” Manny whispered. In the starlight, Einar nodded. That was how he worked his way up and down the line. Getting back to his own hole at One Fifty-Eight he had a couple minutes to spare before the show started.

At exactly 2 AM, 15- and 10.5-Centimeter Artillery, both towed and self-propelled opened up, firing over the ridges. From Manny’s perspective, it looked like the shells were just meters away as they arched overhead. In the valley below, there were little cover beyond the trenches. Looking at Ralf and Christian as Manny grabbed his spotting scope and the canvas bag that held his Thorwald rifle.

“Looks like we are getting a front row seat for this show” Manny exclaimed with far more enthusiasm than he really felt.
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Paso de San Francisco. To show you the landscape of the last post.

It seems that if you want something done in a nasty and smart way then Tilo is the one you call on.
This is a good time for Germany and the United States to engage in some quiet backdoor diplomacy and a good person to shuttle back and forth between Germany and the United States is one Heinz Kissinger because even through he is part of the opposition party in Germany he is considered by all sides to be the preeminent expert on the United States and more importantly he trusted by the Americans and if Chile refuses then their aid gets cut off and German troops go back to the garrisons.
It seems that if you want something done in a nasty and smart way then Tilo is the one you call on.
This is a good time for Germany and the United States to engage in some quiet backdoor diplomacy and a good person to shuttle back and forth between Germany and the United States is one Heinz Kissinger because even through he is part of the opposition party in Germany he is considered by all sides to be the preeminent expert on the United States and more importantly he trusted by the Americans and if Chile refuses then their aid gets cut off and German troops go back to the garrisons.
Aah Kissinger, hated by many on, who also wonder how he's still alive OTL. Hell I remember him looking old in the 1970s.
A lot of my previous post went missing I was trying to write is that the United States tells Chile to accept any peace offering from Argentina and in return the United States gives Child a large aid package to rebuild the country and military while Germany tells Argentina to make a somewhat reasonable peace offer because if they don't the German troops return to their garrisons and aid will be cut back a lot.
The reason for it is that it is in the best interests of Germany and the US that the war comes to a quick resolution to stop it from spreading to other countries that may bring the United States and Germany in to direct conflict.


Just carrying a dozen shells will get you completely exhausted. At 3,400 m at least I get winded up fast there is simply too fee exygen left.
Part 125, Chapter 2108
Chapter Two Thousand One Hundred Eight

25th December 1971

Paso de San Francisco

The choking dust and the noise of mortar shells falling on the ridge were constants as it occurred to Christian just how they had managed to paint themselves into a corner. The morning had started easy enough, directing artillery in the vast set piece battle that was taking place in the valley. The trouble was that the Chileans were not stupid, and once artillery fire had begun, they had started looking for who was directing it. The nature of this battle had made it so that they were shooting blind over the mountains hoping to slow down the opposing force that was driving up the valley, but whose advance was still concealed by the mountains. A high degree of accuracy was a clue that there must be a forward observer somewhere.

The First Platoon was still within what was enemy territory and even if they attempted to retreat, there was nowhere to go. Nothing in this barren landscape offered any cover, so they were stuck until they were relieved. Which happened to be one of the stupidest plans Christian had ever heard of. Manny had just shrugged, “Sometimes you have no choice but to fight” He said, “Then it is a matter of picking your ground.” Christian didn’t believe that. He suspected that they wouldn’t be here if they had not been ordered to.

Later in the morning, something must have given their position away because they had spotted a formation of Infantry working their way up the mountain. Manny had called it in, and they had watched as it had been blown apart by artillery. It had been shortly after that when the mortar fire had started. Christian figured that whoever was directing the blasted things didn’t know exactly where they were, but all he needed to do was get them to keep their heads down. As was, they were trying to get as deep as they could in their holes, with only a thin sheet of plywood, their helmets and body armor to protect them. It hardly seemed adequate.

“They won’t be able to keep this rate of fire up for long, thin air” Manny said, “And being here works for us.”

“What the fuck?” Christian replied, wondering where Manny’s optimism was coming from as they were getting showered with shrapnel and rock fragments.

“Look for yourself” Manny said before pointing up the mountain. “It’s something you have to remember when shooting up or down slopes. Gravity, you know?”

Christian saw that most of the mortar shells were overshooting and hitting the peak of the ridge behind them. Manny had a smile on his face, it was covered in dust and there was a trickle of blood from where a fragment had cut his forehead, Christian was aware that he probably had several similar injuries but had lost count as he had been hit by the fragments that had found their way into their improvised shelter. Christian realized that Manny was very much in his element here when anyone else would be panicking. Small wonder that people thought that the Mischner’s were collectively insane. In the minutes that followed, the fire slacked off as had been predicted.

“Now comes the tricky part” Manny said as he keyed the radio to talk to the others dug in on the face of the ridge. “We’re about to have visitors, lets give them a proper welcome.”

The ragged affirmations came in from those still capable of giving them.

“Do you know something I don’t?” Christian asked. It wouldn’t be the first time.

“Beyond the obvious? No” Manny said, “The group coming up the mountain is probably the size of a Regiment, so have that grenade launcher on your rifle ready.”

Lifting his head to the lip of his hole, Christian saw dozens of soldiers trudging up the mountain. They didn’t seem to be moving particularly fast. In Christian’s experience, the Chilean Army was better than this. What was going on?

Then Christian remembered the walk in yesterday, how the thin air had left him gasping. They were on a mountainside at five thousand meters above sea level, so a Regiment from the Chilean Army that would have pushed them off this ridge with ease had this been at a lower elevation was having to climb a steep slope and getting exhausted. The same thing must have been happening to the mortar crews. Christian took aim with the ladder sight on his rifle, knowing that he was shooting downhill he adjusted his aim. Not that he could miss. The 40mm grenade was fired from the under-barrel launcher, arming itself after it had completed two full rotations before exploding among the Chileans. Breaking open the grenade launcher, the spent case was kicked out and through long practice Christian fed another one into it. Around him, Christian could hear the short bursts of machinegun fire as Manny had ordered them to conserve ammunition.

A couple kilometers and a few hundred meters below them, the battle for the pass was engulfed in clouds of dust. Christian had no clue as to what might be happening down there as he fired additional grenades into the Chileans. He wished that whatever were happening would hurry up and happen, because eventually the weight of numbers was going to become a factor up here. Switching to shooting his rifle, Christian was dimly aware that he was shooting at distances he would not have considered before Manny had gone on that marksmanship kick in Wunsdorf a million years earlier and damned if he weren’t hitting what he was aiming at.