IF the mission is successful, Kat can now leave the SKA on her own terms knowing that they do not need her anymore, and more importantly she does not need them anymore.
Kat can go back to university and become someone who helps others with their disabilities both mental and physical, and in doing so she is really helping herself most of all.

Some other questions I have, in light of the OTL debate about Confederate statues and monuments, what is being done to the statues and monuments to Marx, Lenin, and Stalin?

I was reading a book about the last week of OTL WWII and how there was all kind of problems about announcing the surrender of Germany, are there any plans being made about the end of the war against the Soviet Union?

Emil Jannings is the host of Saturday Night Live which comes from a theater converted into a television studio in Berlin.
The program starts a 2000hrs and last to 2300hrs.
Every week Jannings has a different co-host, who is usually a beautiful actress trying to promote something.
The program starts off a musical number with the Fanta Girls Dancers, followed by a short monologue by Jannings then an introduction of the co-host doing "playful banter".
Jannings then interviews entertainers about their latest project, at first the movie studios did not want their actors and actresses going on the show, but when clips from movies were shown they found out that there was a large increase in the box office and now they beg for their stars to be on the show.
There are comedy sketches, some with the co-host, others with the show cast.
At 2130 there is Weekend Update a ten to fifteen minute segment that started off as a serious news segment but the newsreaders stated to add comedic stories near the end of the segment and now it is just comedic takes on the news.
There are plenty of musical guests, and every week Jannings will bring on stage a surprise reunion of a returning service member with his family, or a marriage proposal of a returning service member to his girlfriend, or maybe there is a young mother who is working in a war production factory gets a week vacation to somewhere nice.
The show ends with a big patriotic number with all the performers on stage.
 
Part 33, Chapter 396
Chapter Three Hundred Ninety-Six


18th July 1944

Moscow, Russia

Getting into the city had never been the problem, getting out was the issue. They now had a plan and the crazy part was that it might just work. Still it was a disconcerting experience for Matthias Schmied, to have the knowledge that this was basically a one-way trip. He had spent his entire life in rural Bavaria before joining the Heer as a Jäger and eventually been recruited into the first class at Judenbach. He never had been comfortable in the city. It was like having an itch in the middle of your back that he couldn’t reach the whole time he was there. There were the others in this outfit who’d grown up in various cities, even though they were comfortable there they had a manic energy that he found off-putting at times.

The blacked-out city of Moscow was far past any of that. The spires of partially pulverized buildings stuck up like skeletal fingers and the place had an alien feel. There was curiously no response from the defenders of the city to the presence of the helicopters. The reason for that was the spoiler missions where the anti-aircraft artillery had been targeted. The AAA wasn’t going to give away their positions for a couple low flying aircraft particularly with the attack bombers lurking around somewhere nearby.

The pitch of the helicopters engines changed as they descended towards the rooftop of a high-rise building in the Tverskoy District of the Russian Capital. Has had been planned Matthias was the first one out the door followed by the rest of the Squad as soon as they were clear the helicopter carrying the second team disgorged their passengers. The helicopters were gone in seconds flying off to the west. Seconds ticked by as they waited to see if they had been noticed. If they had then this mission would be a very short one. After what seemed like an eternity Hauptman Lichtenfeld signaled that it was time to move. That meant that Matthias was on point. He was through the roof hatch and into the darkened stairwell.

They encountered no one as they made their way down to street level. One of the things that the SKA teams had discovered over the last few years was that in this country no one saw anything. After that it was moving cautiously through darkened streets. The uniforms that they were wearing were designed to look at a glance like they could be in any army in the world. They were just one more patrol in a city where such a thing would be a common sight.

The site of the cathedral was abandoned, no one had any reason to be there in the early morning hours and the presence of the tunnel was something that had been held in great secrecy. It took time to find the entrance. Some effort had been made to seal it off but whoever had done it had done a less than stellar job. Good help is hard to find when their only compensation would likely be a bullet to the back of the head, Matthias thought to himself.

The tunnel itself looked like something out of the middle ages. Cramped and narrow, blocked off by steel doors. Matthias thought that they were making enough noise to wake up half the city as they pried them open. The tunnel twisted and turned but the compass said that they were going in a general south-western direction. In the dim red light of the flash lights they opened one more door and saw a row of badly corroded bronze cannons. That was when Matthias realized that they had made it under the walls and were in the Kremlin itself.

Now the real mission could begin.

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The problem was that the Senate Building was huge, they had a lot of ground to cover and there wasn’t much time. The teams split up and fanned out through the building. Several luckless sentries vanished in the following minutes, some wouldn’t be found for weeks. Schafer followed his team as they entered the room that housed the phone exchange he saw the night operator get dispatched in silence with shocking speed. In the following minutes, his team rigged the room with explosives set to blow the next time anyone attempted to send out a call. The other teams performed similar tasks. The idea wasn’t to cause damage right away but to sow discord and confusion in their wake. Once the preliminary objectives were complete they went to the rally point. The stairwell that went into the basement were the primary objective was presumed to be sleeping. As they made their way down the stairs they planted several modified S Mines to cover their retreat. Presently they found the door and it went exactly as planned when they stormed the rooms. While Kat’s fears about there being children being present turned out to be unfounded the problem they had was that Stalin wasn’t present either…

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Molotov was arguing, without actually arguing, with Stalin about the strategic situation in the most cautious manner possible. The General-Secretary had his head in the sand about whether or not there was a way to reverse things at this late hour. As they made their way towards the basement, the sentries seemed to have pissed off somewhere. He would have a word with those men’s commander. They along with their commander would enjoy their new assignments in Siberia. Whether it was as guards or prisoners depended upon how good their excuse turned out to be. Molotov was following a step behind Stalin when his thoughts were interrupted because his foot came down on something that had been left on the stairs. Something that went click…
 
Great chapter. Maybe Stalin will be only maimed. Though the sound of a bomb going off isn't going to bring the team running; they will think it's guards
 
Great chapter. Maybe Stalin will be only maimed. Though the sound of a bomb going off isn't going to bring the team running; they will think it's guards

Hmm. They planted modified S-mines "to cover their retreat." Maybe they don't go off with the first person to step on them.
 
Hmm. They planted modified S-mines "to cover their retreat." Maybe they don't go off with the first person to step on them.
If they planted S-mines, it only means that won't be retreating through that stairwell. You only use them on places that you don't have to be.
 
What'd be hilarious is if a crippled and maimed Stalin gets to recuperate for his trial sharing a guarded room with Stumpy, while getting the finest in Jewish medical care...
 
Part 33, Chapter 397
Three Hundred Ninety-Seven


18th July 1944

Moscow

It took Molotov a second to realize what he had stepped on where he least expected to. It was one of the infamous German bounding mines that due to the nature of this injuries it inflicted were referred to by infantry as the Prussian nut cracker. Stepping on it armed the thing and then depending on the settings it would launch itself into the air to waist height before exploding after the person who had stepped on it had taken one or two steps. Stalin had turned around looking quizzically at Molotov who had stopped talking midsentence. Molotov hated to admit it but there was a part of him that enjoyed watching him get clubbed down. The two bodyguards who had been trailing Molotov and Stalin went down in a hail of bullets. There had only been two because this whole building was supposed to be secure. The suppressed bullets still sounded incredibly loud to Molotov as they whizzed by him.

“They must be having a two for one sale here” One of the unidentified soldiers said in perfect Russian “We come for the Supreme Scumbag and we get the Deputy Scumbag too.”

“Whatever” One of the others said, this one looked like he was older than the others forty or so, “Just get Supreme Scumbag down the stairs without anyone stepping on anymore of the mines.”

Molotov watched as a group of these soldiers dragged a semi-conscious Stalin down the stairs. Was this a coup in progress? The older soldier stayed there with Molotov.

“Are you going to be difficult?” He asked. Like if Molotov had much choice in this matter.

“No” Molotov said.

“Good, now hold still.”

Molotov couldn’t see what the soldier did but then the man stood up and punched him in the face. He found himself laying on his back staring up at the ceiling. Then the soldier filled his field of view looking down on him. “I’d have left you standing there until you went boom but the Fins, Poles and Romanians all really want to have a word with you before your execution.” He felt his hands being tied behind his back and he was being marched down the stairs. He had no clue as to the identity of his abductors until they walked past the basement office/bomb shelter. It was a scene of carnage inside. These people, whoever they were, had shot most of the Georgians which wasn’t much of a tragedy. But there on the table was a steel cutout of a black cat that had two glowing yellow eyes. Molotov knew then exactly who had captured him.

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They dragged Stalin and Molotov down more flights of stairs. According to the map the way out was somewhere down here. Getting in and out had always been the challenge. The way in that they had taken would be impossible if they had to drag Stalin through that tunnel and then make their way back through the streets of Moscow with the sun coming up. Instead getting out with what was possibly the greatest monument to Stalin’s paranoia was perfect. The single-track subway line that ran from the Kremlin to Stalin’s dacha west of the city. The SKA was not about to storm the dacha but sneaking out on the other hand was an easier lift.

Matthias looked around the luxurious subway car that they had found park at the platform. It confirmed everything that he had ever heard about Stalin being Czar in everything but name. Stalin had come to his senses and was staring daggers at them as they dug through the car in search of once in a lifetime souvenirs. It was not like he could say anything being gagged. Staber Schafer had warned them against getting into the booze but there was no reason why they couldn’t save it for later. Presently they got tired of Stalin and Molotov’s angry glares and threw bags over their heads. That was in keeping with the next part of the plan.

Minutes later the car pulled up to a platform. They had found a man in the SKA who had said that he had experience running subway cars like this one. The fact that he didn’t quite line up the car with the platform proved that he was either full of crap, out of practice or both. No matter, they had made it this far. The dacha itself had proven complicated when they had planned this out. Intelligence had estimated that there were at least two Companies of soldiers from the NKVD guarding the place. They had puzzled on how to sneak such a high-profile figure right through them. In the end, they had come up with something that seemed to absurdly simple to possibly work.

Matthias watched as they dragged their prisoners up the stairs to emerge into the pre-dawn light in the compound on the bank of the Moskva river.

“What is the meaning of this Sergeant?” A voice demanded of Matthias. He saw a NKVD Officer; a Colonel walking up to them. Hauptman Lichtenfeld and Staber Schafer were both wearing what looked like plain uniforms of common Privates. Matthias on the other hand was fluent in Russian, one of the talents that landed him in the SKA. He was expected to look like a Noncom and do the talking.

“Nothing, Sir” Matthias said, “Our orders were to take these two black marketeers out of the city and dispose of them were it wouldn’t kick up a fuss. They have well placed friends who are going to be dealt with later.”

“Very well then” The Colonel said before he buried his fist into Stalin’s gut. “A swift bullet to the head is too good for scum like this.”

“I agree, Sir” Matthias said sincerely, “Now we just need to get this over with before these traitors waste any more of our time.”

“What do you think you’ll need?” The Colonel asked.

Minutes later Matthias saluted the Colonel from the passenger seat as the lorry they had commandeered rolled out the main gate. He returned the salute.
 
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"Click" doesn't necessarily mean a mine. If he lived long enough to hear it, it should have already gone "BOOM!", at least for most mines. Of course, it might well be a mine anyway.
I wonder if they've brought any smaller versions of the metal cats to leave as calling cards on the way out...

OK--posted just as the next installment was going up. Looks like I was on the right track with the cat...
 
The teams drive to where the helicopters are waiting, they fly back to Stupino, Koch sends messages to Berlin, and the teams pass around the bottles they liberated. Everybody gets smashed on a combination of relief and alcohol.

The next day Kat leads them all on a run to sweat out the alcohol then they start working on the after-action reviews - one for internal use only and one for distribution to the public.

A couple of days later the compound gets beseiged by journalists, lawyers, and high-ranking officers.
 
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