Abwehr should leak blueprints to a flying saucer design and have other nations pursue an expensive dead end :)

Ooh, yeah. They might need to build a few mockups, maybe something that'll actually barely fly.

"Like" is too mild sometimes.
 
Have Anton Faust "lose some color footage of the 'prototype'" where Fleming can find it.
 
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Part 29, Chapter 330
Chapter Three Hundred Thirty


1st August 1943

Judenbach, Germany

There was a real possibility that she was trying to put Doug off by doing this but he had spent most of the last year with the Dragoon units of the Panzer Corps so he had dealt with far worse. Kat had walked in wearing old stained coveralls, a Flak vest and several obvious weapons. At least she had taken the time to wash her face before she had come down to the village of Judenbach.

“Sorry” Kat said as she sat down at the table, “I’m required to brush up on my training and Sunday evening is the only time I have free.”

Doug knew better than to call her out on the fact that if she had stayed up at the camp she would have cleaned herself up and put on her dress uniform. Part of the ritual of Sunday dinners at Judenbach. Not that Doug was dressed much better than she was.

“Was what happened unexpected?” Doug asked.

“Yeah” Kat answered, “I had made other plans for this week, I was going to spend it on Langeoog with my Aunt Marcella and Gianna. Now that’s all going to have to wait”

“Where?” Doug asked.

“It’s an island on the North Sea” Kat said, “I spend holidays there if I can.”

There was another reason. The trial of Lavrentiy Beria, Stalin’s henchman was finally starting this week and the powers that be didn’t want Kat anywhere near Berlin lest she taint the prosecution’s case. She had a couple scores to settle with Beria and no one wanted to find him pulped in his cell before the verdict. In Judenbach a close eye could be kept on her. The truth was that Kat had learned patience over the last few years. She would get a chance put that loathsome creature in his place before the execution. Douglas Blackwood didn’t need to know any of that.

“Really” Doug remarked.

“It’s peaceful outside of tourist season” Kat said, “Just the wind and sea.”

Doug looked around. This place was a bit rustic, he’d noticed that no one here batted an eye towards how Kat was dressed. At the same time, they seemed to be in no rush to welcome her either. “Where is the menu?” He asked.

Kat was amused by that question. “There is no menu” She said, “The night’s meal is whatever the cook is making.”

Doug looked at Kat skeptically.

“I hope you like potato barley stew” She said, “And don’t look closely at the meat, there’s no happiness to be found there.”

It sounded like a delightful meal.

“Hans told me about the little game you were playing with Jost Schultz” Kat said off handedly, “You really ought to have known better and please don’t ever involve me in anything like that ever again.”

No wonder Kat hadn’t put much effort into this, she knew what had happened. She also didn’t seem in the least bit angry about any of this.

“Sorry about that” Doug said.

“So, I’m the scornful shrew who’d automatically turn down any man with the balls to even ask?” Kat asked. Doug noticed that she was amused by his discomfort.

“I admit it, I painted myself into a corner” Doug said, “And that listening to Jost was in fact a mistake.”

“Was that so hard?” Kat asked, “Now we can start over and enjoy this meal.”

“One thing first” Doug said reaching for his camera bag and pulling out his camera “As proof.”

“Boys and their games” Kat said. She let him take the photograph, the room was perfectly lit by the afternoon sun and she sat there with a slight impish smile on her face.


Near Sevastopol, Ukraine

Jack felt like he was in a different war. The scene before him could just as easily been in Flanders or Verdun during the Great War. Trenches, rusted barbed wire, lots and lots of shell holes. Every few minutes a 42cm shell shrieked overhead and the ground shook. Jack was trying to ignore that by reading a letter from Joe who was describing life on the family estate in County Cork. They had arranged a television to be imported from America and were enjoying it even if there was only one channel to watch. Jack was puzzled by that. What was a television?

Jack heard the sharp crack of a rifle nearby, an old 98 from the sound of it. One of the Reds must have stuck his head out and a sniper had just turned him into a good Red.

He went back to his letter. Joe had found an entry into Irish politics. Apparently, it was Jack who he had to thank for that. It had turned out that having a brother off fighting the scourge of Stalinism was good for his career and the family’s entry into polite society. That self-serving jackass, Jack thought to himself. The same thing could be said about the rest of his family as well. As if he was in the middle of this nightmare for their benefit.

“Got news, Sir” Patrick Berne said hesitantly. The Ceannaire always did this whenever he thought that Jack wasn’t going to like the news that he brought.

“What is it?” Jack asked.

“Word is we’re moving up” Patrick said.

“And who is the word from?”

“The Coirnéal, Sir”

“That isn’t word” Jack said patently “Those are orders.”

“Yeah, I guess they are.” Patrick said as if that was a sudden revelation on his part.

Jack was careful not to let the annoyance show on his face.

“Please go fetch the Sáirint, Ceannaire Berne” Jack said.

Patrick ran off to spread the bad news.
 
Will Stalin attempt a landing on Langeoog and pack it full of supplies and artillery so that the Germans can't attack his beachhead?
 

perfectgeneral

Donor
Monthly Donor
Where does this come from?
It comes from the actual proposal for a follow-on to the Essex class (image loosely based on US 1945 Fleet carrier Study C-2 from Friedman’s ‘US Aircraft Carriers’ ). It really did have a waist catapult! I moved the lifts about within plausibility. A variation on an OTL proposal of the time. Stolen from the USN perhaps?
 
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Abwehr should leak blueprints to a flying saucer design and have other nations pursue an expensive dead end :)
Nah, you gotta make sure it can fly. Any aeronautical engineer will tell it can't fly.

Now a Flying Wing, those babies had issues up the wazoo....
 
“For every man like that we have several others who only seem to get worse. You remember Herr Hitler?”

Peter tried to hide the reaction to that from his face. The man who the other patients in the ward called “Stumpy” was sort of hard to forget. “Yes, I remember him” He said.

I'll bet that Herr Hitler has a Foley catheter to save on diaper changes. No, it's not painful (except for a bit of ouchie when being inserted).
 
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Part 29, Chapter 331
Chapter Three Hundred Thirty-One


3rd August 1943

Điện Biên Province, Vietnam

The last several days had been hellish. The airplane had dropped them in a clearing and the planners still hadn’t gotten a clue that clearings in Vietnam meant elephant grass between two and three meters in height. It took them hours to find all the gear that had been parachuted in with them. Then it was hacking their way through the rugged terrain that straddled the border between Vietnam and Laos. Ridges followed by valleys all the way to the mountains in China.

Tilo was hacking his way through the jungle with his bolo, the blade had retained its edge for this entire trek. He hadn’t realized how important it would become when he’d been handed it back in Cuxhaven. 38 centimeters of spring steel and a hardwood handle that had been wrapped in cord.

The whole point of this mission was to observe and report on Japanese activity. They were not to engage so long as they had other options. If they got into a tight jam then help was extremely far away. For Tilo what that was looking like was kilometer after kilometer of this sort of trudge.


Judenbach

Twenty-one years. How was that remotely possible? Kat was thinking about that as she concluded her day. She would need to walk across the compound, eat dinner at the instructor’s table and treat this like it was any other day. That was something else that didn’t seem possible.

Kat reread the letter from Suse Rosa, it no longer had the power to rip her heart out but it was a reminder as to how her perception that she was unwanted had been so very wrong, in fact it was a reminder that she had gotten a great many things wrong. Still she was counting down that dread number in her head, twenty-two years, four months, twenty days. She knew that was irrational but it represented a fear that she had that she had never been able to conquer. When she had talked about it with Doctor Holz he had even gone so far as to review the medical file and autopsy report. What he had concluded that what had happened was the result of a series of bad decisions and incompetence. Technology, pharmacology and medical understanding had improved to the point where he doubted that Suse Rosa would have died. Still she just couldn’t get past it.

There was a knock on the door, she was expecting one of the trainees but instead it was Thorwald himself.

“What can I help you with, Sir?” Kat asked as she opened the door.

“I was going over the schedule” Thorwald said “Still enjoy running men twice as big as you into the ground I see.”

“It’s our job here” Kat said, “Isn’t it?”

“Deflating massive egos is, yes” Thorwald said “Come along Hauptmann von Mischner, do I need to remind you about how you are not allowed to skip meals?”

Kat frowned, of all the days that the Oberst could have remembered that little detail. She stepped out and fell into step beside Thorwald.

“Today’s your birthday?” Thorwald asked.

“Yes, Sir” Kat muttered. She had meant it when she had told Douglas Blackwood that she had planned on spending this week in the East Frisian Islands. She wished that she could be there with Aunt Marcella and Gianna instead of here.

“I don’t know if have heard but you’ve been recommended for advanced training in Grafenwöhr” Thorwald said.

Kat had heard, some genius thought that she should be trained as a protocol officer.

“You have to admit that it would be a good thing if you could learn to talk to people without starting a war” He finished.

“They seem to have forgotten that I got sacked when I worked at the Auswärtiges Amt” Kat said.

“They haven’t forgotten anything” Thorwald said “Ever hear about what happened to your former supervisor?”

“No, I haven’t” Kat said, why should she concern herself with that individual?

“Last I heard he was reassigned to sand choked city-state somewhere in the Arabian Desert having to explain to the Sultan why we aren’t about to start another war with the British” Thorwald said “It’s what happens when you screw up royally.”

“I guess that’s true” Kat said.

As Thorwald put his hand on the door to the mess hall. “Some of your fellow officers arranged to have a cake made for you” He said, “So try to act surprised.”

“Thank you for the warning, Sir” Kat said.


Reichlin-Lars Airfield

Joachim looked at the press release. There was a photograph of him looking suitably heroic in the cockpit of an airplane. A brief bio followed by a description of the technical feat he’d been at the center of. What it had next was puzzling. Instead of a FW-252 it had a photograph of the Horton Ho-229. The prototype of the flying wing fighter/bomber had been tested here in Reichlin a few months earlier. Sure, it looked like it was fast and futuristic but the example they had tested was underpowered and had stability issues. The Horton brothers had taken it back to do some more work on it. The press release also stated that he was to be the first person to have received both the civil and military classes of the Pour le Mérite since 1916. That was news to him.

Joachim concluded that this Summer was turning into one of the best that he’d ever had.
 
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If you were wondering what a bolo like the one Tilo has looks like.

imacasa-bolo-1.jpg
 
Chapter Three Hundred Thirty-One

Reichlin-Lars Airfield

Joachim looked at the press release. There was a photograph of him looking suitably heroic in the cockpit of an airplane. A brief bio followed by a description of the technical feat he’d been at the center of. What it had next was puzzling. Instead of a FW-252 it had a photograph of the Horton Ho-229. The prototype of the flying wing fighter/bomber had been tested here in Reichlin a few months earlier. Sure, it looked like it was fast and futuristic but the example they had tested was underpowered and had stability issues. The Horton brothers had taken it back to do some more work on it. The press release also stated that he was to be the first person to have received both the civil and military classes of the Pour le Mérite since 1916. That was news to him.

Joachim concluded that this Summer was turning into one of the best that he’d ever had.

He probably should get briefed on why the Ho-229 takes center stage. That way he can drunkenly brag about the 'correct' plane and innocently mention some details to fatten the story.
 
He probably should get briefed on why the Ho-229 takes center stage. That way he can drunkenly brag about the 'correct' plane and innocently mention some details to fatten the story.

After a bit of thought he'd realize why the Ho-229 took center stage. The briefing will be with the Luftwaffe PR people and the Abwehr, coming up with a minute-by-minute story of the "mission" complete with all the internally consistent details. "I took off and once I was sure everything was working perfectly I went to full power and pitched up to the maximum-rate-of-climb airspeed. Once the climb rate dropped off at maximum altitude... Um, sorry, I can't tell you what that is. Where was I? Oh, at maximum altitude. Once I wasn't going to climb any more I took a deep breath and pushed over into about a 45-degree dive. The controls stiffened up and after a bit it got really quiet - I could hear the airflow across the canopy and the engine noise through the airframe but the sound of the exhaust faded out. I guess I was outrunning it at that point." Etc.

Horton needs to be briefed in and a security cordon put around the -229 (possibly slightly permeable for certain details at great difficulty) .

Joachim needs to understand that this is not only a propaganda bonanza but also an exercise in Realpolitik and military intelligence. He has to realize that he's pointing all Germany's competitors in the wrong direction and incidentally condemning some test pilots to death when their Ho-229-like airplanes experience mach tuck and either fly into the ground or break up when attempting to pull out.
 
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Great update. Presuming work on the YB-35 is proceeding as per OTL (Maybe accelerated, especially now) the US at least is going to be exceptionally suspicious of the German claims once they start having their own fun with flying wings...

Also, those bolos are great for clearing branches, able to easily slice through about double finger width branches at a swing
 
Yeah. However that may end not so well. Ironically the research in the Ho-229, and later the YB-35 and YB-49 started the grounds in which the field of Stealthed planes was based.

Im STILL scratching my head as WHY nobody reported the "Radar Vanishing" issue that was reported also from documentation in the OTL Ho-229,and also was seen later in the YB-35 and YB-49, something that results from the Delta all wing having a lower profile than normal for radars.....
 
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FBKampfer

Banned
They wouldn't simply vanish from the radar, that simply had a lower RCS, and would appear as smaller contacts. Instead of "oh look, there's a fighter" the radar operator is thinking "oh look, a buzz bomb". Or alternatively "fuck that Storch is hauling ass".

If far enough out and their vector is brining them roughly parallel to the radar, the contact will fade in and then out as it approaches, and then egresses, with return likely peaking when the sweep of the wing is perpendicular to the radar.
 
Part 29, Chapter 332
Chapter Three Hundred Thirty-Two


10th August 1943

West of Voronezh, Russia

Horst had suspected that this would happen. The Russians had starved the Ukraine in order to buy time by creating a vast humanitarian and logistical headache for the advancing European armies. That was all to create the situation that was before him now. Scouting units were reporting a defensive line along the Don River and the City of Voronezh had been fortified, Horst figured that this was the merely the first such surprise. Anywhere there was a natural obstacle it would be safe assume that that was true.

This was night and day different from the newspapers that Horst had been reading. It seemed as if everyone assumed that this thing was almost over. He hoped that the public wouldn’t take it badly when they learned that the Russians had once again traded space for time in order regroup. Instead of the war everyone was carrying on about this pilot who had flown an airplane past the speed of sound. It was noticeable that almost all of the focus was on the man and not the machine. Something about it had the whiff of something off, but Horst had spent his entire life sniffing out official bullshit so he had a far better nose for that then most.

Horst stood up in the passenger seat of his car and tried to get a read on the land, flat and empty, not a place for subtly. He would need to wait for the artillery to move up and then find a place to cross the river…

Horst heard a “click” and saw that the photographer that had been accompanying the Regiment had snuck up on him.

“I’m going to need to see that before you dream of sending it to your agency” Horst said.

“Don’t worry, Sir” Doug said, “That was the sort of picture that you’d want in circulation, makes you look good.”

That was an amusing thought, perhaps Nina would see it.


East of Luhansk, Ukraine

“What the fuck!” Kurt yelled as the Panther barreled through a field of sunflowers. When they had come under fire Lars had done what he normally did turned in the direction of the fire. The momentum of the Panther had carried them into the field where Kurt’s cupola was right at the level of the heads of the sunflowers, so he was getting a face full of plant matter as the passage of the Panther chewed through the field.

“I can’t see shit!” Lars yelled into the intercom.

“No shit!” Kurt and Olli both yelled back. The loader’s hatch was open and didn’t have the advantage of the cupola so that meant that Olli what having even more sunflower bits raining down on him.

The Panther broke into the open and Kurt saw that they were surrounded by dug in hulldown Russian heavies. It might have been out of panic but Volker fired the main gun at the first heavy that passed through his sights. The Russian heavy had the armor piercing shell punch through the side of the turret below the commander’s cupola. Someone on the Russian side must have noticed that the Panther was among them because the turrets on two of the heavies started to turn towards it. Kurt popped the smoke projectors and the Panther was engulfed in a cloud of blue smoke.

“Reverse! Reverse!” Kurt yelled into the intercom.

Lars attempted to reverse but his foot slipped off the clutch and the Panther spun in place right as the heavy on their right fired as where they might have been if they had reversed. The 122mm shell screamed by so close that Kurt could have sworn that he felt the wind of its passage and hit the heavy that had been to their left in an accidental act of fratricide.

The heavy that had just fired was backing out of its dugout presenting Volker with the perfect shot at its engine and transmission which he took. As Olli loaded another shell into the breach a fourth heavy came rolling down the line. The long main gun still pointed towards the road right towards the Panther. Kurt couldn’t believe his luck.

“Put one through the side Volker” Kurt yelled into the mic, “Like you did before.”

Kurt watched as Volker put one through the side of the heavy’s turret. That was when it sunk in that they had just dispatched four heavies in the last few minutes.

“Hey Lars” Kurt said, “Get us back to the road before the Reds get wise to us.”

With that they plunged back into the sunflower field.


South China Sea

Jacob sat there listening to the Japanese radio traffic. The war of words had continued until the IJN had agreed to do something. The problem that Jacob had was that because of the mutual anger the IJN had refused to tell the IJA what they were up to. So, he was left waiting to see what they were going to do.

Just in case he had doubled the scouting planes that were watching the Qiongzhow Straits. Now tonight he’d gotten word that a handful of Japanese Cruisers were running the Straits. He didn’t understand what they’re game was. What could a handful of cruisers do against his fleet.

Jacob could hear the traffic between the individual ships. He was listening to updates from the radar operators. The Japanese cruisers had turned away at thirty kilometers then he caught the words “successful launch” in the radio traffic.

“All ships to General Quarters” Jacob said with far more calm than he actually felt. Something bad was coming their way.
 
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