The USN could continue the project by shifting funds around and actually producing a weapon that could be tested, but that is going to be very risky if Congress finds out before they can build the bomb.
 
The USN could continue the project by shifting funds around and actually producing a weapon that could be tested, but that is going to be very risky if Congress finds out before they can build the bomb.

Well if J E H is busy rooting out corruption, if he gets wind of money being misappropriated within the Navy, his bullheaded approach could for it into the "public" eye beforehand...

Nothing like a man being "patriotic" to damage his country.
 
Abwehr could have recruited sympathetic Congressional aides to get information like defense budget priorities, reports on strategic materials.reserves, New weapons prototypes that need Congressional approval for funding, and any other things that Abwher might like information on.
Abwher could have the aids suggest certain questions that the Representative or Senator they work for could ask.
 
With all the bad press the Russians got starving out the Ukrane, Why would Germany risk it starving out the Japanese?
 
With all the bad press the Russians got starving out the Ukrane, Why would Germany risk it starving out the Japanese?

Well the Japanese have deployed bio-weapons, they've been given the chance to surrender, and it sounds like they've committed as many atrocities in this timeline as they did in ours. I don't think anyone will shed any tears over their decision to starve by choice.
 
Part 39, Chapter 491
Chapter Four Hundred Ninety-One


12th September 1945

Berlin

“I expect that you two will take a lesson from this” Maria said, “Even if you are married and relatively secure financially, being pregnant is still a pain in the ass.”

Gianna and Asia stared at her wide eyed, unsure how to respond. That was probably a good lesson for them that they would never have gotten in school. Already, none of Maria’s clothes fit right and she was finding that Emil’s continued absence was irksome. She had been taking her frustrations out through the editorial process. Any reporter who engaged in typos and clumsy writing was discovering how merciless she was when their articles were coming back covered red pencil marks and suggested rewrites. Complaining to the Editor-in-Chief himself did them no good because he didn’t want to be bothered and most of Maria’s suggestions were good.

Gianna had gone to Russia in the presence of what were essentially a half dozen body doubles. The newspapers who had been waiting for a glimpse of the mysterious Jehane Thomas-Romanova or Alexandra Lukichna as the Russian Orthodox Church knew her. Instead they had several young women of the right description but none of whom could be confirmed as being Jehane. Maria had promised Kat that she wouldn’t expose Gianna as Jehane, but she expected something in return for that eventually. It was not as if Maria didn’t owe Kat a favor or two, the year before the exclusive that Kat had provided had been an award-winning feature story.

Where Asia came in was that Gianna had become close friends with her during their travels, they also so closely resembled each other that they could be mistaken for sisters. Gianna knew that the newspaper always had room for more warm bodies to do the most basic tasks around the office and had asked if her friend could work there. This had come at a time when Maria had needed the extra help, the Doctors had told her that she should be fine working so long as she didn’t exert herself too much. Having a second assistant helped with that. Around the office Asia was seen as another one of Maria’s protégés and that Gianna was on the verge of moving beyond being a mere assistant. Gianna and Asia had also been the only ones who Maria had told about her current state of health. The knuckle dragging cadre of Neanderthals in the Reporter’s Pool could figure it out in a couple months. Then their wives and girlfriends would have to explain slowly, multiple times, how these things worked.

“Relax, you two” Maria said, “It’s not as if your moment won’t come, eventually.”

With that, the wide-eyed confusion gave way to horror. Maria chuckled. What she was doing was a service to the community. Making these two girls think things through regarding relationships, committed or otherwise and the consequences. No matter how responsible you think you are, life happens. “Now what do we have on the Stalin matter?” She asked. She had been having Gianna follow the that particular story, along with every other reporter in this building it seemed. Nothing sold papers quite like someone taking the drop.

“Still the same” Gianna said, actually thankful for the change in subject even if it was to this one. “Too sick to execute.”

It was an absurd situation, Stalin had suffered a series of strokes during the trial. Now that had resulted in a delay of the scheduled execution. It would be unseemly to have to carry a man to the gallows and kill him.

“Just keep an eye on that” Maria replied, “You never know when…”

Asia drew Maria and Gianna’s attention the way she might have in school. It was habit that Maria had broken Gianna of but that had taken months, raise your hand and wait to be called on, don’t speak out of turn. “Yes, Asia?” Maria asked.

“Gianna could gain access, to the execution, Stalin himself perhaps” Asia said, “As Jehane.”

That possibility had occurred to Maria, but she hadn’t wanted to bring that up with Gianna. Confronting directly the man who had terrorized her family for decades and eventually causing Kat Mischner to fake her death as the only real means of letting her lead a normal life would not be easy. That wasn’t the sort of thing that you could ask someone else to do. And after the number that Kat had pulled on Beria it was doubtful that the Government would consider anything beyond being a silent witness. Still, if Gianna was willing to do that it would be an incredible coup for the Berliner Tageblatt.

“That’s not the sort of thing that you can ask someone else to do, Asia” Maria said, “Now moving on, have you had any more trouble with the boys?”

“Not since I had it out with them” Asia said with a sweet smile. There was a great deal of implied violence in that.

Maria returned Asia’s smile. When she was their age she could have used what Kat taught these girls.

Gianna was deep in thought as Asia and Maria talked about Asia’s experiences during her first days of working for the newspaper. She was getting to know what it was like for Kat, this other persona who other people thought you were. When Georgy had announced that Jehane had survived and had emerged from hiding he’d said a lot of things. Some of it was true but most of it was exaggeration. He’d painted her as this saintly figure that she hardly recognized. She had volunteered to help Russian prisoners of war but that was mostly because she wanted to help Kat who had been overwhelmed by that task, not out of any love for the Motherland. The burial of her family had been the first time she had set foot in an Orthodox Church since her Grandmother had died, after that her Mother had said she wasn’t interested in going through the motions any more.

But most of all there was this stupid story that she had forgiven the men who had ordered her family’s death. Gianna had done no such thing. Her family had been forced to flee Russia in the dead of night but not before enduring months of being degraded and humiliated at the hands of the Bolsheviks. Then the fear had continued for years afterward until they had been found again. Gianna felt nothing but anger when she thought about how they just couldn’t leave her family alone and what they had taken from her personally.
 
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When the USA discoveres the sabotage, there will be horrible things happening. Hoover, as head of the FBI, will be in HOT water, among others. Meanwhile, violent unrest should be popping in the USA. I wonder--are people starting to buy guns in the north and drive them south? Or, perhaps, even knock over a gun store or two?

Dynamite is easy to get in some places, too.

THIS can help people get around, to go to and from places where things can be bought without comment:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Negro_Motorist_Green_Book
A copy showing up in Berlin will drive home what King and company are fighting against. Instead of yet another tract about race, it's a practical guide that tells the oppressed people how best to live with it. It could be GREAT ammunition for painting the powers that be with a very dark brush...

Even, in the future a poster, "Why We Fight" and underneath, a picture or two of lynchings and such, along with the Green Book, "That this will not be needed"
 
Lovely update! Next time, could we please have more Kat? I love that character you made!

Our esteemed Peabody-Martini has a few other plot threads going on at the moment - US nuclear weapons program, war in Korea, war in China, war against the Japanese home islands, the future of Russia. Tilo, Jost, Maria, Marcella, Kira, Georgy, Fleming, Emil, J. Edna, Schultz, Peter, Doug ...

I kinda wonder what happened to Fleming's Fools - Maclean, Burgess, Blunt, Carincross - after the war was over. Did they get prosecuted and hanged once their usefulness was over?
 
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Our esteemed Peabody -Martini has a few other plot threads going on at the moment - US nuclear weapons program, war in Korea, war in China, war against the Japanese home islands, the furure of Russia. Tilo, Jost, Maria, Marcella, Kira, Georgy, Fleming, Emil, J. Edna, Schultz, Peter, Doug ...

I kinda wonder what happened to Fleming's Fools - Maclean, Burgess, Blunt, Carincross - after the war was over. Did they get prosecuted and hanged once their usefulness was over?

In this era getting posted to the diplomatic mission in Lahore is all the thanks they need.
 
But that gives away that you were on to them. Instead you let them stew out the rest of their careers in dull and unimportant posts and you might be able to use them in some sting operation against a foreign intelligence service (other than the Abwehr who know you have detected them) in the future. Or the Russians might try and reactivate them a few years down the road. Waste not, want not!
 
Well the Japanese have deployed bio-weapons, they've been given the chance to surrender, and it sounds like they've committed as many atrocities in this timeline as they did in ours. I don't think anyone will shed any tears over their decision to starve by choice.
Not just that, there may have been a deal for a face saving peace that would have been the best outcome for Japan.
If you remember, Peabody-Martini had posted that Germany was going to accept the first reasonable deal and that is when the bio-weapon attack happened.
It may have been a rogue element of the IJA that carried out the attack, but all of did was to show that only with the complete defeat of Japan can there be peace.
 
Penguin count on the Falklands.

Better still for the summer, work for the British Antarctic Post Office. To quote the job description:-

Are you in good shape? Able to carry a big, heavy box over slippery rocks and slushy snow? Happy not to shower for up to a month, live in close proximity to three people and 2,000 smelly penguins for five months with no power, heat or hot water and limited communications?

As well as being passionate about the Antarctic. You need to be:
• Personable – do you value getting on with others? Can you live and work with just three others for five months and be friendly and cooperative throughout?
• Positive – can you enthuse to visitors when it is -5C° and blowing a blizzard as well as cook supper cheerfully after a long cold day and very little sleep?
• Conscientious – will you be doing your best day in day out for 5 months?
• Meticulous – can you keep accurate records be it penguin eggs, t-shirts, or food stock?
 
Part 39, Chapter 492
Chapter Four Hundred Ninety-Two


28th September 1945

Near Vladivostok, Russia

The order to begin preparing for fueling operations had come in during the early morning hours. The had been brought by special courier from Berlin and they were hand signed by Emperor Louis Ferdinand, Chancellor August Lang and the relevant heads of the Oberkommando der Wehrmacht. In the last few days the Luftwaffe had been dropping leaflets on Japan to back up Lang’s ultimatum, the Japanese had three weeks from the 10th of September 1945 to surrender or there would be severe repercussions.

With that, the lethal endgame was about to begin.


Spandau Prison

This was probably a mistake, Gianna thought to herself for the thousandth time. The idea that she could use her identity and pull to do this had echoed in her head after Asia had suggested it. She had realized that she would never be free of Stalin unless she confronted him directly. She had buried her parents, but she still had one last aspect of the past that needed to be buried. She had asked the Empress for this favor, she had never asked Kira for anything before and had been expecting to be told no. Instead here she was in this place with damp and despair seeming to ooze from the very walls in equal measure. The portion of the prison that housed the condemned was silent as the tomb that the inmates here would never occupy. It was policy that those executed here be cremated and their ashes scattered to the winds. It was in keeping with the whole notion of State execution. The purpose wasn’t just to kill the person but to erase their very existence. No gravestones, monuments or memory, just a typewritten death certificate to go into the Government records.

“You are to wait here Grossherzogin” The Warden said, “This conversation will be monitored, you are not to give anything to or take anything from the inmate or engage in physical contact. Do you understand?”

That was a reminder that she was here as a Grand Duchess and that the guards here clearly remembered Kat’s little stunt almost two years before. There had been a great deal of speculation as to what Kat could have said that set Beria off like that. Screaming questions in incoherent Russian at Kat as she walked away ignoring him. Gianna had a sinking suspicion that it probably had included her continued survival.

“Yes, I understand” Gianna said.

Gianna sat down in the chair that had been provided. She pulled her notebook from the pocket of her coat and wrote her observations of this place while she waited. The door opened, and Joseph Stalin was led in and chained to the floor across from Gianna, hardly the man of steel he fancied himself as. He was grey faced and had lost considerable weight, his famous mustache was gone, along with most of his hair. It reminded her uncomfortably of photographs of her own Mother after what had happened when she had been ill while in Soviet custody.

Eventually he focused on her.

“Do you know who I am?” Gianna asked.

“That’s the wrong question” Stalin replied. Do I care who you are? Was what he was implying.

“You should care” Gianna said, “I’m the only person who has bothered to come here. Such a fall for the Red Czar.”

He clearly didn’t like to be called that. In the months after the fall of Moscow films and photographs of his lavish lifestyle had been shown widely. If Stalin wasn’t slated for execution here in Berlin and kept confined in a solitary cell, then he would be faced with the prospect of being hunted by the Russians. His former Deputy, Vyacheslav Molotov, had testified against Stalin at the trial in an effort to save his own skin, part of that had included protection from his own people. What Molotov hadn’t thought of was that the Finish Government had requested extradition so that he could be tried for crimes related to the Winter War. While the German Government might have cut a deal with Molotov, he had no deal with the Finns.

“Are you here to torment me?” Stalin demanded.

“No” Gianna said, “I’m here for my own peace of mind.”

“Only the truly mad would think that there is peace to be found in a place like this” Stalin replied.

“That’s true enough” Gianna said, “But I’m only visiting.”

“Enough” Stalin said, “What do you want?”

“An answer to my first question” Gianna said, “Do you know who I am?”

“And as I’m sure you’ve already figured out, I don’t care who you are.”

“And I say too bad for you” Gianna said, “My name is Jehane Alexandra Lukichna Thomas-Romanova.”

With Stalin started laughing, “You’re that little Romanov bitch who that incompetent ass Beria failed to kill” He said, “One more criminal in a long line of such criminals. Deserving nothing more than to be slaughtered like diseased livestock.”

That was perfectly in keeping with what had been found in the Soviet archives. The order for the Romanov’s murder had been cut and would have been carried out if they hadn’t been spirited out of Russia. Stalin stopped laughing when he saw that Gianna was just staring at him. “If you think I’m going to apologize for that then you are deluded” He said.

“I’m not expecting an apology from a despot and hypocrite like you” Gianna said, “That would require the ability to feel shame and take responsibility.”

Stalin looked at Gianna in outrage, all of that was true but that didn’t mean he liked to be called on it. There was a word for what this man was, psychopath. He did not have the ability to feel empathy towards others. Before Gianna had come here she had read everything she could find on his conduct. He had refused to cut a deal with the Heer during the war for a prisoner exchange that had included his oldest son.

“Then for the last time, what do you want?” Stalin growled.

“My cousin Georgy told the world that I forgave you and publicly I will continue to say that” Gianna said, “I’m here to say that I will always be angry about what you’ve done to me and my family. I’m not here to forgive you. I’m here to let you know that I intend to have a life that will go on long after you’re put to death. That is my final victory over you and your Government.”

“Are you through” Stalin said in a low, dangerous voice.

“Not yet” Gianna said, “When they dump your ashes in the cesspit then I will consider this through.”

“That’s enough, Fraulein” The Guard who had been observing said. He might not have been particularly conversant in Russian, but he could tell it was a heated exchange.

“It’s alright” Gianna said, “I was just leaving anyway.”

The last thing Stalin saw of her was her smiling as the door was slammed shut. In a few minutes he would be taken back to his cell after Gianna was escorted out of the prison.

Later Gianna was sitting waiting for the train that would take her home writing everything she could remember of that conversation. She had promised Maria that she would have an exclusive interview with Jehane Thomas-Romanova, with the notes from this encounter that was going to be quite the article.
 
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With that, the lethal endgame was about to begin.

My, my, Japan is continuing the tradition of foolish decisions in the wake of overwhelming firepower. Too bad the Divine Wind they're about to get is not what they had in mind.

It was in keeping with the whole notion of State execution.

Is this based on the OTL Nuremberg procedures or did Imperial Germany do this as a standard policy as well? It seems more like something used for traitors and war criminals, not the run of the mill murderers.

“Not yet” Gianna said, “When they dump your ashes in the cesspit then I will consider this through.”

What I love is that she leaves Stalin thinking that's her last word...

Later Gianna was sitting waiting for the train that would take her home writing everything she could remember of that conversation. She had promised Maria that she would have an exclusive interview with Jehane Thomas-Romanova, with the notes from this encounter that was going to be quite the article.

...when this will be her last word. What a way to do it.

Also, I have to love Molotov being in the Finnish hot seat.
 
My, my, Japan is continuing the tradition of foolish decisions in the wake of overwhelming firepower. Too bad the Divine Wind they're about to get is not what they had in mind.



Is this based on the OTL Nuremberg procedures or did Imperial Germany do this as a standard policy as well? It seems more like something used for traitors and war criminals, not the run of the mill murderers.



What I love is that she leaves Stalin thinking that's her last word...



...when this will be her last word. What a way to do it.

Also, I have to love Molotov being in the Finnish hot seat.

The Japanese had a nice time fighting the Germans, but now they’ll die in a tornado.
 
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