If it was easy to send a military sniper to kill important people, especially in wartime, OTL Hitler, Stalin, etc. would have had the JFK haircut a few months into the war. Plus, Vasiliy (Zaytzev, I presume?), a lower class upbringing Russian (who only speaks Russian) would only be among the last I'd pick to send on an undercover mission. Lastly, to assassinate somebody with a sniper rifle you would need to know the route the target would take, place the sniper as far as 500 meters to have a high chance of a hit and as close as under 300 for a kill. And they'll only have a limited window of opportunity.
To be frank, from the people listed (German Imperial Royal Family, Kat, Vladimir, Gianne, Wolvogle, Emil), the Imperial family is safe in Berlin, is in Germany somewhere and the Soviets couldn't reasonably have a clue were she would hang out from one day to another, Vladimir is presumably safe and under guard, especially after the hit against the Romanovs, Gianne is not known to the Soviets at all, Zhukov is presumably in a German Army Headquarters being interviewed/interrogated, Emil habitually wear a lower rank field uniform, and to be recognized a sniper would have to get closer than 100 meters to a Fallschrimjager unit (yeah, good luck with that - and that's if Emil is even visible to said sniper), so the only one the Soviets could even hope to target is von Wolvogle, who wear a distinctive uniform, and that's if he'll be close to the frontline, and the Soviets will somehow find out when and where.
Unless the Soviets send some Inglorious Basterds, of course.
 
Part 26, Chapter 292
Chapter Two Hundred Ninety-Two


28th February 1943

Berlin

Yuan Pujol had checked the dead drop from his Russian contact in Central Berlin. Ten minutes later he called Schultz and told him that they needed to have an emergency meeting in the back room of the night club belonging to John Elis. A couple hours later Schultz called Konteradmiral Patzig to request a meeting of the Principals. It was the first such meeting that he’d had with them since the decision regarding the German involvement in Spain.

“Would you mind telling me what this is about?” Patzig had asked.

“A line that we set years ago just hooked a whale” Schultz answered, “We need a plan on how to progress.”

“One small problem here” Patzig observed “Most of the agents that your handler controls don’t actually exist. Of the few who do, I’m aware of at least a few who aren’t inclined to return your calls.”

Schultz almost swore when Patzig said that. Juan Pujol had been running wild for the last several years. He had the Russians paying the fictitious widow of a fictitious agent a pension. Had faked several assassinations including one that had supposedly happened on the S-Bahn with statements from a dozen witnesses running in the local paper. He’d even taken credit for an accidental fire in an ammunition factory and a couple of train derailments, claiming that they were works of sabotage. At some point, they had realized the Soviets had become totally dependent upon Pujol’s network within Germany. Now they had requested his help in facilitating an assassination that could in theory change the direction of the war.

The problem was that to turn this crisis into opportunity he needed Heinz Thorwald, Fritz Schafer and Kat Mischner. Thorwald and Schafer were busy and Kat hated him.

“There has to be something they want” Patzig said, that sliced through Schultz’s thoughts. Thorwald was easy, he wanted to be the best at what he did and liked to show it off. Schafer would probably get involved if he thought he would be protecting Kat. Kat was the challenge. What could she possibly want? The only thing that Schultz could think of that she might want would to be free of him forever. He couldn’t do that. Or could he?

That only left how to go about doing this in a manner that got them what they wanted without compromising the network and to have this blow up in the Russian’s faces. This even had the potential to get them out of a thorny political situation.


Over Vietnam

Lenz was finding that this was very different from flying against the Russians. The armor of the FW had saved him the first day when he’d discovered that the Japanese planes could turn inside of an FW. Curiously it was his experiences of flying against the Brits in mock dog fights before that had shown him the way forward. Schwarm tactics, putting the speed and power advantage that they had to it’s best use. Following the chaotic first days, Lenz had spent his time beating that into the heads of the pilots of Jasta 60 and they were starting to get results.

Lenz was flying at 4500 meters, the other three planes from Jasta 60 were in a loose formation in front of him. He was flying as the wingman to the element, 60-5. 60-7 was flying lead with 60-4 as his wingman. Once the radar had been set up at the airfield they had enough time to scramble and get to altitude.

“This is exactly how we talked about it” Lenz said into the mic in his oxygen mask “We’re faster and tougher than they are. If you get in trouble, dive away, speed is life, cover your wingman’s ass. Got that. 60-10 out.”

Lenz saw Japanese planes passing below, as always it seemed like there were way too many of them.


Eastern Poland, Near Chelm

Things had finally boiled over. A sharp discussion about politics and religion had resulted in Jost taking a swing at Doug. Jost had been surprised when he’d connected with nothing but air. That had gone on like that for another five minutes, Jost swinging at Doug but never connecting. The soldiers of the Platoon were losing interest and Jost was left standing there, red faced and humiliated. Hans watched this with a great deal of detachment.

“Give it up, Jost” Hans said, “He could have dismantled you if he wanted.”

Jost gave Doug a dirty look before stalking off.

“Are you insane?” Hans asked.

“Hardly” Doug said, “Your friend telegraphs his every move.”

“I could have you arrested for that little display” Hans said, “What the Hell are you, British Military Intelligence or the Canadian version?”

“I think my father would prefer it if I were, but I’m neither of those things” Doug said, “I’m an honest to God photojournalist.”

“Then how do you explain what just happened?”

“I had an interesting childhood” Doug said “My father is an Officer in the Royal Canadian Regiment. He decided when I was ten that I needed to learn to fight so he entrusted me with his Adjutant who taught how to read men and dodge punches.”

“You do know that story is going to have to be checked out” Hans said.

“Knock yourself out” Doug said.

Real funny, Hans thought to himself. “Please avoid Jost in the meantime” He said.
 
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To me Beria is what happens when you mate a cockroach with a rat then it takes human form. I think that he knows that the gig with Stalin is up and he is going to want to cut a deal with someone who is also power hungry and is going to need their own secret police. After all the Czar's secret police worked for the Bolsheviks after the revolution, so why not return the favor for a new Czar?
 
To me Beria is what happens when you mate a cockroach with a rat then it takes human form. I think that he knows that the gig with Stalin is up and he is going to want to cut a deal with someone who is also power hungry and is going to need their own secret police. After all the Czar's secret police worked for the Bolsheviks after the revolution, so why not return the favor for a new Czar?

In fairness, there are some things even rats and roaches won't do.
 
Could the target be Russian not German?
Or maybe Georgian.

To me Beria is what happens when you mate a cockroach with a rat then it takes human form.
And oddly resembling Himmler.
himm9.jpg
Lavrenti_Beria-secrete.jpg
 
Minsk, Belorussia

Vasily’s eyes were still nearly swollen shut after his last beating. He was technically a deserter, he had seen the nature of the lethal trap that the Army had been blundering into when someone snuck into a bivouac and cut every other man’s throat and had not made a sound in the process. He’d managed to get himself and most of his people clear of the pocket. The Commissars had however taken exception of him doing that. With the hinges giving a squeal of protest the door of his cell opened. A Commissar he’d never seen before entered.

“It looks like the State might have use for you after all, Zaytsev” The Commissar said looking down at him “Perhaps a chance at redemption.”


I think that we see the formation of the Spetnatz a little sooner in this timeline. The first SKA was formed and trained by a sniper, so that what is going to happen. It is Always better to steal a good idea, than coming up with your own (stupid) idea.
 
My own nightmare scenario for Russia...

Alexander Kerensky in Paris announces the formation of a new Government-in-Exile with him at the head of it.

Leon Trotsky in Mexico City (if he is still alive) announces his own Government-in-Exile.

The pretender Vladimir and Beria secretly makes a deal with each other.

Fleming knowing that Jehene is alive (and if there is a "Romanov Document") starts putting together a Pro British group that will use Jehene as a figurehead to run the show.
 
Zaitsev vs. Thorvald, the ATL version. Wonder if this one will engender the same forum rants about whether it actually happened in the ATL internet era as it does in ours.
 
Targets:

German Imperial Royal Family
Kat
Zhukov

or if he is going back to the front, I am going to guess its the officers he is going to shoot either Wolvogle or Emil. They are the two main generals/primary targets on the front


No way is he going after Kat or the German royal family. That would take a specially trained operative maybe years to get close enough to do anything. Not a common grunt, who hasn't even been embedded, he'd never get close. He'd have to blend in Germany, he can't do it. Kat would spot him a mile away, and slice him into at least six jagged pieces.

Zhukov would also be stretching it. Getting captured would be easy, but then you have to be assigned to the same POW camp as Zhukov, which would be far too reliant on luck.

Since he isn't a sniper, Wovogle seems a stretch, but not out of the question. Same with Emil, with the added negative that he's generally surrounded by elite soldiers.
 
I like the possibility of an enemy at the gates redux, but that last update made me wonder if a certain Man of Steel may be in the crosshairs...
 
You think killing/sniping the enemy commander in chief on a war front is a stretch?
I personally do, as I, like @weasel_airlift , pointed above, while von Wovogle is the most vulnerable targets to sniper fire, it's not like it's a overly large risk. To be honest, a deadly car accident would have around the same chance to end Wovogle.
First, W. needs to be on the Front, or very close to it, so that the Sniper can conceptually have a line of sight. Second, the Soviets would need to know when the target will come to the front, and where in particular. Rommel, who habitually did this, was never ambushed by the British SAS, who had noway of knowing when and where he will be.
Lastly, if I, as a, say, Regiment, Division or Army Commander would know that at a particular point in time the enemy Front Commander is in a specific, close to the front, location, I wouldn't send a sniper. I would send a few spotters and prepare as many artillery bateries as I can muster, a Wing of CAS planes, if I can manage it, and follow it up with a fast armour penetration and an infantry sweep, idealy decapitating as much of the enemy leadership (the main target and as much of hos General Staff as he had on hand).
And lastly order the troops who took part to order themselves in formations and piss over the ashes in an organized fashion.
 
Finally caught up. Excellent timeline. A simple POD and real human interaction. Much more engaging than a history book setting.

Two questions.

When will Germany finally have the nuke?

And is anyone else working on it besides Germany? Is so who?
 
Part 26, Chapter 293
Chapter Two Hundred Ninety-Three


20th March 1943

Leningrad, Russia

When it had come to symbolism Vladimir had clearly out done himself. This was the first major city of Russia to be taken in this war. Vladimir intended to declare himself Czar while the city would be restored to its old name of Saint Petersburg. The rebirth of Russia on the first day of Spring. He had also gone for a full on public ceremony with the backing of the Russian Orthodox Church.

Kat was here to try to talk him out of it this, if she could.

Kat could see evidence of the war around the city as she made her way through it. A half dozen Hellcat Jägers were with her. The Empress had insisted that Kat not be without protection after word had reached her that Beria was up to something. It was a reminder that Kira had her own ways of getting information.

She found Vladimir ready to take the stage. “I was asked to tell you that there are things that you aren’t taking into consideration here” Kat said.

“Great, my sister once again tries to talk to me” Vladimir said, “This time through one of her favorites.”

“I’m not talking to you as an agent of the Empress” Kat said, “I’m from Abwehr this time, beyond the politics there is a credible threat on your life. The deal that you think you have is crap.”

Vladimir was about to take the steps that would take him up onto the stage when he turned towards Kat. “I don’t know what you think you know but you are wrong” He said.

“Beria told you that he’d fake the attempt when the truth is that he sent one of the best snipers in the Russian Army” Kat said.

“How else do you think it would be sold to the public?” Vladimir asked as he walked up the steps. Reluctantly Kat followed.

“Can’t you wait for a better time?” Kat asked, “In a few months…”

“Enough” Vladimir said “Leave, now.”

Vladimir saw that at least the girl had at least shut up. Instead she was looking at the buildings across the public square and the small curious crowd who had gathered. If she knew the plans that he’d made then she would know that he was in no danger. Was he?

“Damnit, don’t you get the shit you’re in?” The girl demanded.

“I think you should…” Vladimir started to say when the girl pushed him off his feet landing on him.

“What is wrong with you?” He demanded. There was a distant crack and the thugs who had accompanied the girl here rushed onto the stage. All their attention was on her as they pulled her off of him. “What do you think you are doing” he demanded.

“Stay low, Sir” One of the Hellcats said.

“Why should I…” He started to say when he saw the soldier’s armor that the girl was wearing had a ragged hole in the back…

----------------------------------------------------------------

The Hellcats had gotten a hold of the sniper and the well-ventilated remains had been brought out for all the world to see, in several pieces…

Vladimir walked towards the train, his body guards bristled when they came into contact with the Hellcats. One man, a civilian, with the Hellcats looked like he wanted to rip Vladimir limb from limb, with the broad shoulders that the man had he possibly could be capable of it. The hospital in the city wasn’t up to major surgery yet, so instead they had brought the girl here to the train that was to evacuate soldiers from the front. She had been trying to warn him about the deal that he’d thought that he’d made. Who knew what she actually knew but the shot had not come from where it was supposed to or when. Vladimir realized that he’d been set up.

As he boarded the railcar he saw that every other bunk was unoccupied except the one the girl was in. Covered by an army blanket she looked so incredibly small…

“You can tell your sister that even if Kat lives through the night there won’t be a whole lot left for you or family to take” A voice said angrily, “She’s one of those people who sacrifices everything for others and people like you take advantage of that. I’m halfway tempted to let her father in here to give you the beating that you deserve.”

Vladimir saw that it was a Doctor that he hadn’t seen when he had walked in, an Oberst from the uniform. “That’s who that man out there was?” He asked.

“I’ve no idea how he got here so fast” The Doctor said “He’s someone you really don’t want to be around tonight. Now get the Hell away from here before your idiotic ambition causes any more harm.”

Vladimir walked away shamefaced. How would he explain this to Kira? That he’d nearly gotten someone she considered a friend killed.


Rosenau, Latvia

While most of the border regions of the Soviet Union and the German Empire had been torn apart by this war there were some exceptions. This village of only a few hundred inhabitants was one of those places, Lavrentiy Beria saw this as soon as he stepped out of his car. Useful for this sort of meeting.

Things hadn’t gone according to his plan, Zaytsev had changed thing up in an effort to get out alive for all the good it had done him. His orders had been to make the shot and he had to the best of his ability. The Siberian hunter was supposed to have died before it had come to that. One good thing about this was that he’d missed and his shot had hit Katherine Mischner, that girl had been a thorn in Beria’s side for a long time. His source in Leningrad had told him that she was out of the picture, that the Doctors weren’t optimistic and even if she lived she’d never again be the fearsome figure that she had been.

Beria approached the house and let himself in. It was looking like this was going to be a good night.
 
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