Stupid Luck and Happenstance, Thread III

The LON is seen as a debate club that has no more power than the individual member States give it. So, pretty much the exact same about of power as the UN has in OTL.
Fair. I would argue that in TTL, with the lack of a bipolar world for most of it’s history, it might have managed to get a little more done. A more homogenous international community, as well as a lack of a clear superpower like USA post 1990, could mean that it’s easier to deal with some issues without having half of the world oppose it due to political alignment.
That man’s talents really were being wasted by the City of Los Angeles.

It's great to have a powerful patron, until they're not.
TTL's Nixon seems more stable than OTL, so hopefully less likely to hire G Gordon Liddy to bug a hotel.
Hopefully Nixon's patronage of Richie is via at least two cut outs and very arm's length.
That said, Richie seems to thrive in any position and the CNG is probably the easiest way to start boosting him. Jump him to 1st Lt and fast track his promotion to Captain will give LAPD the reason to bump him up from Sgt and onto SWAT.
The "Official" story is that the bomb was in no danger of detonating because of "Positive Control Protocols" that prevents any accidental premature bomb arming and detonation.
Due to the quick action by LAPD Sargent and California National Guard CSM Richard Valenzuela to call in available reinforcements from the various Active, Reserve, and Army and Air Force National Guard units in the Greater Los Angeles Area to cordon off the accident site, and for that he is going to be given several awards from the Armed Forces to the state and local governments.
From there Ritchie may be able to take the LAPD's Lieutenant exam and may get promoted to be a Warrant Officer.
I wonder if his colleagues have noted how much a danger magnet Ritchie is?

It is starting to get over the top.

Given that similar things have happened to militaries that have taken part in large wars in living memory, the crash is sadly plausible.
I wonder if his colleagues have noted how much a danger magnet Ritchie is?

It is starting to get over the top.

Given that similar things have happened to militaries that have taken part in large wars in living memory, the crash is sadly plausible.
I'm wondering what all the police who gave him a hard time in his teen think of him now tbh.


The "Official" story is that the bomb was in no danger of detonating because of "Positive Control Protocols" that prevents any accidental premature bomb arming and detonation.
Even if the nuclear part of the bomb does not go off, just the conventional explosive lenses in the bomb are enough to tear some bystanders into shreds.
Richie’s journey through the ‘Stupid luck & happenstances continues. I’m not sure if this is one of @Peabody-Martini’s cosmic jokes, but I found the combination of Richie Valens(uela), ’La Bomba’ (sic) and a plane crash a little bit funny?
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I'm watching the new(er), SWAT TV series at the moment.

Why do I suspect that Hondo will be Hispanic in TTL's version?
From there Ritchie may be able to take the LAPD's Lieutenant exam and may get promoted to be a Warrant Officer.
Probably yes. But even more likely, I believe that the Army can promote him with the battlefield commission to second lieutenant, because in his case, however, it is about excellent leadership and not special technical skills. In other words, he will suffer a fate similar to Walter Horst in the sense that a career non-commissioned officer will be thrown to the bottom rung of the officer career ladder.
Part 139, Chapter 2402
Chapter Two Thousand Four Hundred Two

29th August 1975

Los Angeles, California

“A goddamned nuclear bomb hanging from an oak tree in Franklin Canyon Park, and you just happen to be one of the first Officers on the scene” Bill Wilkinson remarked over the phone. “That is a bit much, even for you, and to think, they sent you out to the West Bureau to keep you out of trouble. Fat lot of good that did.”

“I guess everyone has heard by now” Ritchie replied as he had the phone wedged between his shoulder and ear as he tried to keep from dropping Kristie, who was doing her best to squirm out of his arms.

“If that thing had gone off, taking out Laurel Canyon and Bel Air would have done us all a favor” Wilkinson said, “I doubt that they would even notice in West Hollywood though, too many mutants there already.”

“I talked to the Wing Wipers who showed up to collect the bomb” Ritchie replied, “They said that there was never any danger of it going boom.”

“And you believe them?” Wilkinson asked.

“Beats the alternative” Ritchie replied as he carefully set Kristy into her crib. “Everyone knows that if there was the slightest chance of a detonation, the Air Force, the Joint Chiefs, the Department of Defense, and everyone on down to the guy who mops the floors, would all deny it until the end of time.”

“All about politics and reputations?”

“Of course, I saw it plenty in the Army, CYA you know” Ritchie replied as Kristy realized that she was about to be left alone in her crib so her father could get a bit of sleep. Though he was not going to be more than a few feet away, she was having none of it.

“No shit” Wilkinson said, totally ignoring Kristy’s squalling. “I seem to recall that I warned you about reputations around the department, good or bad. While you were not seen as a gun fighter, you had gotten yourself known to be wherever the action is. That kind of changed when you decided to do the Gang Taskforce’s job for them. Think that it is an accident that you haven’t had a partner in months? The Brass in the Glasshouse are scared that whoever they stick with you won’t have your ability to walk between raindrops.”

“I hadn’t heard that” Ritchie replied as he debated picking Kristy back up. She wanted attention, but she would keep him awake all day if he let her.

“You also got some of the members of the hat squad shitting bricks because they remember their dealings with you back in the day. They had no idea you had the balls to do some of these things” Wilkinson said, “They really hated you, didn’t they.”

“They hated Bobby” Ritchie replied, “But he was nowhere to be found, so they came looking for me.”

“That sounds about how those bigoted pricks go about doing things, every Mexican looked the same” Wilkinson said, “No one bothered to tell them that it ain’t the 30’s or 40’s anymore.”

“You were around back then” Ritchie said, “Was it really the Wild West?”

“You don’t know the half of it” Wilkinson said, “Movie stars and Mobsters, the glamour of the Golden Age, naturally that was a complete load of horseshit. Like a fresh coat of paint on a house infested with termites. Half the Department was on the take and the rest didn’t say shit unless they wanted to get themselves killed. They would have laughed themselves silly at then idea of Blacks and Mexicans on the Force in those days.”

That was delving into some uncomfortable areas for Ritchie. The shootout in South-Central had been orchestrated by someone high up and they had to be pissed that their plan had gone sideways.

“Any word in the Glasshouse about the investigation into what happened in January?” Ritchie asked. Wilkinson had a large number of connections in Parker Center, if anyone had a clue as to what was happening it would be him.

“Professional Standards is off the case” Wilkinson replied, “The Feds are on it now, and you know what happens when they get involved.”

The Federal Bureau of Investigation moved at a glacial pace, but like a glacier they crushed everything before them. They had you dead to rights before they even bothered to speak to you. Of course, the FBI had taken a hit or two over the last few years. If there was a major victory to be had by nailing someone in the LAPD then by God, they were going to take it.

“I understand” Ritchie replied.

“Be glad you are out of Central Bureau” Wilkinson said, “Trust is in short supply these days.”

To think that Ritchie had been listening to Tony complaining about being sent to public relations in Van Nuys. Apparently, telling school children about the dangers of narcotics wasn’t much fun, or at least not in a way which didn’t invite the disapproval of their teachers.

“I’ll need to take your word for it” Ritchie said. There were worse things to do while on duty than to drive around the canyons and mountains in West Los Angeles.

“Whatever” Wilkinson said, “Try not to get yourself killed.”

“Yeah, whatever” Ritchie replied, before he hung up the phone.

Ritchie looked at Kristie who had fallen asleep but would probably be awake at any second. That was when the phone rang, causing Kristie to wake up and start screaming.

“What!” Ritchie demanded as he answered the phone.

“Is this Richard Valenzuela?” A bland voice asked.

“Yes” Ritchie replied.

“Please hold for the President of the United States” The voice said before elevator music started playing over the phone.

“Wait, what?” Ritchie asked.
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I think the most likely promoting that Ritchie gets is to be the Command S argent Major of the California National Guard, what I am,most interested is the level of education that Ritchie has achieved, when we last found out that he has a two year Community College degree but we don't know if he is still going for a four-year degree.
His options are CSU Los Angeles, San Fernando State College (now CSU Northridge) or Occidental College in the Eagle Rock area where he and Lucia live.
The Latino leadership in Southern California while not having a fondness for the various Law Enforcement entities in Southern California, they see him a a role model to show White Americans that that they too are part of the "American Dream".
Ritchie is not CSM of the Whole California National Guard, he has too much baggage and that is too much of a political appointment. If they keep him in the Guard he can go the Warrant Officer rank and even get a transfer back to SF, the Army had 2 groups in the reserves and 2 in the guard spread out over the country. Warrant gives him the rank and gravitas to have people listen to him but takes him out of the direct chain of command so there is not so many heart attacks.
Without the IOTL Superpower conflict between the US and the Soviet Union. this accident may spur the call for an international agency to oversee inspections of the world's nuclear stockpile to ensure that an accidental detonation of a nuclear device doesn't happen.
As for the different governments that do have nuclear weapons, it is going to be in their best interests to go along with the official story the Americans are putting out because to do so otherwise may cause their citizens to demand that they get rid of their own nuclear weapons, which in turn could make the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament a more mainstream movement ITTL.
Just so long as Richie doesn't think this is a prank call . . . .

Also I'm wondering how attitudes to nuclear weapons and the CND will differ.

1) There isn't a radically different clear enemy nation that needs to be deterred.
2) Nuclear weapons have never been used in anger, so people's thoughts about them will be different.
3) There probably isn't enough around to seriously endanger the human race.
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A sharp reporter on the Metro section on the Los Angeles Times is going to notice that Ritchie has been in the news more than a few times lately for a number of reasons and will think that Ritchie could be an interesting subject for a Sunday profile.
Said reporter will wonder why a German Princess came to his wedding which would lead him to get in contact with the Society Page editor who would tell the reporter to get in contact with the National Security and Military Affairs reporter.
Part 139, Chapter 2403
Chapter Two Thousand Four Hundred Three

31st August 1975

Tempelhof, Berlin

The end of summer had felt like a rubber balloon with the air slowly leaking out. To his surprise, Sepp had enjoyed his time at the castle. Something about it made time pass by oddly, like if each day had a thousand different parts. Then one day he had been told that he needed to prepare to go home, and it had been with great reluctance.

Dieter wasn’t happy because for the first time he had made an actual friend. A girl named Alex, apparently short for Alexandrine apparently shared several interests with him. He had found out that they lived in different neighborhoods back home. Sepp knew that was the extent of his brother’s thinking, that he wouldn’t be going to school with a friend he had made over the summer.

Getting home wasn’t exactly any sort of great homecoming for Sepp and Dieter. The first thing they noticed was that their father wasn’t crashed out in the parlor like most weekend mornings. If fact he wasn’t around the house at all. It seemed that while they were absent over the summer, their mother had finally had enough of their father. He hadn’t supported them in ages and most of the time was a net drain on the family. She had changed the locks while he had been out on a Friday night blowing through a week’s wages and was divorcing him, provided he ever was dried out enough to start proceedings.

Montreal, Canada

It was expected for Marie to attend the mixer for returning students. She felt that with classes starting in only a matter of hours, this time was better spent doing other things. Yet there she was. Oddly, the people around her knew who she was, and they had a lot of questions.

“I have absolutely no desire to get involved with any of that” Marie Alexandra said as she took a sip of beer, which was quite terrible. She had no idea how the art of making decent beer had been lost on this side of the Atlantic, but it apparently had, and it seemed like no one had noticed.

“I would have thought that you would be a natural for it” The other student whose name Marie couldn’t remember said, “With the Olympics here next summer, translators will be in high demand.”

That was just it, the reason for that high demand. Everyone was all about how the Olympics which were coming to Montreal. There were already preparations happening throughout the city and it was anticipated that there would be massive crowds. For Marie it all felt like a huge disruption, and she wanted nothing to do with it. While the rest of the world was heading to Canada, she was planning on going home. While she had played the role of translator for Jack Kennedy in July, that had been entirely her choice as opposed to having it imposed on her. Marie couldn’t get away fast enough.

Marie had flown back to Canada a few days earlier and surprisingly both of her grandparents had been happy to see her. While she made a point of not antagonizing her grandmother too soon, she had told her grandfather about how she had spent the first half of her Summer Holiday at the beach house on Langeoog then the second half on the estate of Opa von Richthofen. Sir Malcolm had been interested in how the old Bloody Baron was spending his retirement and Marie had told him about the trip into Berlin to the Imperial War Museum where a camera crew had followed Opa as he conducted a walk around of his old Fokker and Albatros fighters which were on permanent display in section that dealt with the history of the Luftwaffe. Everyone else spent the week exploring the various museums on the island in the center of the City. Marie had found herself with Mathilda Auer and Mathilda’s perspective was certainly an interesting one to say the least.

Los Angeles, California

When Ritchie had received the call from the President, as unbelievable as that might seem, it had changed everything. It seemed that Nixon had wanted to tell him personally that the Office of the Secretary of the Army had put his name forward for promotion and the President was prepared to personally sign the warrant, a rare honor. It had taken a moment for him to realize the implications of that. His thinking was that he was presently a Sergeant-Major, there wasn’t a whole lot higher to go in the Army. Then it had clicked, what Nixon had said about a warrant. It seemed that his actions in the Police Department along with putting together a LRRP Team in California National Guard had not gone unnoticed.

Of course, the offer had come at a good time. The LAPD was currently unsure as what to do with him, so him asking for a leave of absence to go back to the Army was greeted rather enthusiastically. A bit too enthusiastically in Ritchie’s opinion.

Lucia was a bit harder to convince.

Her consideration was that when he left for WOCS at Fort Lewis up in Washington and then Special Forces training at Fort Meade in Maryland, he would be gone for months. Afterwards they would be living at the whim of the US Army, a prospect that Lucia was far less than thrilled with. At the same time, this was an incredible opportunity. Not just for Ritchie, but her as well as Steven and Kristie.
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