...... And in Washington DC several people have a bad case of Rage Breakdowns as several years of manipulation, money and deals go down the drain.
Also a severe case of CYA will spread out though the various intelligence agencies as everybody will point to the other agencies and say " You're the ones who were supposed to keep track of von Michener".
Also this coup attempt may have stepped all over an ONI operation in New York when the Rhineland and the von Richthofen were supposed come into port and the generous use of liquor and beautiful women on the German sailors were authorized to get them to talk.
IOTL after the failure of the Bay of Pigs invasion, CIA director Allen Dulles was the fall guy and he "resigned" for it.
Kat had accompanied the German Ambassasor on his helicopter flight to the US Embassy. She was wearing her rough clothing, flak vest, weapons belt and SMG hanging from one shoulder. She was standing next to her helicopter when a Marine officer in a green uniform and a broad-brimmed hat like the RCMP wore approached, came to attention and saluted.

Kat retured his salute. She looked closely at his rank insignia. "I think I was supposed to do that, Colonel."

"The Blue Max the Major's wearing says otherwise."

"Well, we don't salute in the field. What can I do for you?"

"Would the Major have been in New York in January of 1941?"

"The Major would, and the Major really dislikes being referred to in the third person. Why?"

"I was a Captain at the time and the State Department hijacked me and a dozen of my men to help with security for something having to do with a red-headed woman they never really explained and wound up not happening."

"I'm gonna geld that asshole," Kat said under her breath. To the Colonel she said, "Yes, that was probably me. It was a mission for Empress Kira. This isn't the time or place to talk about it."

"That's all I need to know, Major. It's just something that I've wondered about."
Yeah, Fleming was twisting Kat's tail with that story in January 1941 and we have never did get the full truth about what or if there was any Marines there at the airport to meet Kat.
It would be ironic if the truth were to later come out that there was just one official from the State Department along with someone from the German Counsel to make sure that Kat did not get off the plane and have the plane go to back to Germany without any delay.

There was someone (a journalist?) that was hired to look into Jehane's 'killing' and who stumbled upon the story of the closure of the airport due to an army exercise - something he noted because it happened shortly after Jehane's death.
Part 48, Chapter 635
Chapter Six Hundred Thirty-Five

28th December 1947

West of Comodoro Rivadavia, Chubut Province, Argentina

Kat was asleep, leaning on Doug’s shoulder as they approached the oil town in the early morning hours. For the last two days they had been making their way north and east with the intention of getting back to Las Grutas. They had told the rest of the expedition that they were going south to cross over into Chile and make arrangements once they got to Puerto Natales. Doug had felt he owed them nothing after they had blamed him for their predicament. If he had not brought Kat along the Army wouldn’t have shown up like it had. Then there was Kat’s reaction, it had been to come in shooting and blowing up the building they were in. She should have just sorted it out. Doug marveled and the naivety of that. Those soldiers would not have been interested in just sorting things out and Kat would have cut her own throat before she handed herself over to them.

But then they had only witnessed Kat in the full madness of battle when she had looked like how Mucha had depicted her in that painting. Later, when it was only Kat and Doug alone in the house they rented, and they were trying to salvage whatever they could Kat had completely fallen apart. It was Kat’s darkest secret, she was a goddess on the battlefield but every time she pulled the trigger, it cost her a piece of her humanity. She had been desperate for any kind of human connection afterwards and it had been heartbreaking to watch.

While the rest of the photographic expedition had scurried back to Puerto Santa Cruz, they had gone north for two days across questionable roads and desolate country before turning east. It was hoped that Comodoro Rivadavia was large enough place for them to escape official notice while transit up the coast was arranged. With luck they would be safely in Las Grutas but that afternoon. A hot shower and a real bed sounded like heaven.

Office of Strategic Services Headquarters, Navy Hill, Washington D.C.

If the full story ever leaked to the Press, then they would be lucky if they were only lynched. The operation had taken on a life of its own as the Administration had grasped for a foreign policy success to hopefully reverse things before the election next November. The OSS, ONI and US State Department had been caught up as everything had rushed forward. Now, too late but to watch the pieces fall where they may.

Things had started to go wrong weeks earlier when the SMS Rhineland, one of the most advanced German Battleships and the current flagship of the Atlantic Squadron of the High Seas Fleet had abruptly turned away from New York and steamed south joining a Carrier Group in the Azores. There could only be one destination for that much firepower in the South Atlantic but by then everything was already in motion. The ONI was furious because of that turn in events, they had been hoping to reap a wealth of intelligence while the Rhineland was tied up in New York. It also revealed that someone had somehow tipped off the Germans, a detail that was becoming increasingly alarming to the Administration. The Agencies that were supposed to protect the nation were leaking like a sieve.

The news out of Buenos Aires was looking like a train wreck in the making. The Generals who had said that the Army and the Landowners would fall in behind them had missed the mark. The Landowners had refused to take a side and the Army had split apart. While Argentina might not be about to become an American proxy, it could be headed for civil war which served American interests almost as well.

29th December 1947

Near Las Grutas, Río Negro Province, Argentina

Doug had wanted to leave the country immediately. Kat had realized that was a bit more difficult than seemed. At the Comodoro Rivadavia Airport it had only been a matter of greasing a few palms to get them on an airplane north. Getting to the main International Airport would require going through Buenos Aires, the absolute center to whatever what was going on and getting on an airplane would be much more complicated. They needed intelligence before they even thought of going in that direction. That was why Kat was with Martzel in a secret room in the attic of the big house of the Hacienda, where Martzel kept his radio set, with the small code book she had kept in a plastic bag hidden on her person for exactly this sort of situation. The pages were just meaningless columns of numbers to anyone reading it. The paper had an odd feel to it, having been treated with an acid to make it easier to dispose of.

Kat keyed in the code words she had memorized before she had left Berlin on the pre-arranged code, Spatz-Grün, Sparrow Green. Meaning Agent in distress, contacting from a place of temporary refuge. A minute later three numbers came back, 25-51-32. Kat flipped open the book to page twenty-three and looked for column fifteen, line fifty-two for the authentication number. It seemed like an absurdly simple system but it had tripped up attempts to break into the network in the past when a code book had been compromised. Keying the authentication number, Kat tore the page out of the book and shoved it into a glass of water and watched it dissolve as she waited.

A moment a second number was broadcast, and Kat turned to the correct page and keying another authentication number. A torrent of numbers followed, and Kat wrote them down as they came in. They repeated once and ceased. She decoded the message.


Local situation remains fluid, Arg. Gov. in flux due to coup attempt by Mil. Do not attempt to enter Arg. Capital. Forward requests that you remain in place. Further orders pending, please stand by.

Kat let out an exasperated sigh as she watched the second page dissolve. Douglas was not going to like this.
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I wonder why does the image of a bunch of choppers and rise of the Valkyries come to my mind?

I think more of some dieselpunkish jet fighters shrieking overhead in formation, loosing missiles...

He then read in the paper a stupid human-interest story about how the New York Police Department and the US Marine Corps had done an exercise without warning at the airport a few years earlier. Keystone Cops, Seymour thought to himself. But then again, the NYPD had been nothing but a pain for the entirety of Seymour’s career. He would expect nothing less.
There was someone (a journalist?) that was hired to look into Jehane's 'killing' and who stumbled upon the story of the closure of the airport due to an army exercise - something he noted because it happened shortly after Jehane's death.
Seymour Edwards who was investigating the Tumbler Ridge Massacre for the late Czar's sisters did not make the connection between the story in the newspaper and to whatever happened to Jehane.
He later sent a telegram to them saying that Jehane was dead and it was Fleming who was with Kennedy that told the sisters that Jehane was alive and living with Kat.

Wow so many balls are up in the air in this timeline, it is hard to keep everything straight.
Now the coup plotters might have the bad luck of successfully direction-finding on the secret transmitter. This is going to blow up big!
Now the coup plotters might have the bad luck of successfully direction-finding on the secret transmitter. This is going to blow up big!

Direction-finding's not that likely in this circumstance. Only two words and two authentication numbers transmitted on a random freqency.
Part 48, Chapter 636
Chapter Six Hundred Thirty-Six

30th December 1947

Near Las Grutas, Río Negro Province, Argentina

After a couple of days Kat had gotten new orders, they were going to be picked up by elements of the Fleet that afternoon. Kat had decided that they couldn’t risk exposing Martzel further, so she had planned for them to meet them at the beach rather than the Hacienda. Doug had realized that Kat had other motives when she had wanted to go swimming as soon as they arrived at the beach. Her hope was that she could take one last shot at washing away the events in El Calafate, if only it were so simple. After they were through swimming they were sitting on their blanket letting the sun dry them.

“Sorry I messed this whole thing up” Kat said, “You wanted a nice vacation, and so did I, but all I’ve done is complicate it at every turn.”

“You’re hardly to blame for a military coup” Doug said thinking about putting a shirt on before his skin started to burn. “No more than if there was an earthquake or a forest fire.”

“Even before that, I can’t travel openly without official headaches. It seems like I can’t go anywhere without there being shootings or explosions.”

“I think you are being too hard on yourself” Doug replied. He hated it when Kat wallowed in self-pity, it always came when she was starting to get depressed.

It was fortunate that the sound of a helicopter approaching could be heard. That would prevent Kat from dwelling on things for a little bit, she always loved to fly in those things.


Reier was starting to think that he was mellowing with age, having recently turned thirty he had woken up one morning and found himself assigned to a shipboard billet and promoted to Oberfeldwebel. He’d somehow gone more than a year without getting busted down in rank. Then Tilo had published his book, Line Dog. Reier had been sent an advanced copy of the book that was due for mass marked release in a few months because he had been featured prominently. Reier had read the book while Fat Freddy was cruising in the Mediterranean Sea, he had been amazed by how Tilo had depicted him. Both as a partner in crime and as this heroic figure that always had Tilo’s back. Reier was surprised that was how the Tilo remembered things. How Reier remembered things was that as they had fought their way across the Pacific Reier had gotten Tilo into deep shit all the time.

Then this morning, he had been called into the ready room and the Hauptman in charge of the Marine Company aboard the Graf von Richthofen, including Reier’s MA Platoon, had briefed him about the mission that he was going to be leading. They wanted him to lead a Squad to find an Agent Sparrow-Green who was hiding in the Argentine backcountry. The Agent was supposed to meet them on a remote stretch of beach, but they needed to be prepared for anything. Whoever this Sparrow-Green was, they were important enough to get Fat Freddy diverted to have that be within range of the helicopters.

The helicopter flared and landed on the beach and the men swiftly formed a perimeter. It was empty except for a couple who had apparently been swimming. Reier felt ridiculous as he walked up to the couple. “You Sparrow?” He asked the man.

“Hardly” The man said. His voice had an odd accent, American, but different, French?

“You’re looking for me, Oberfeld” The woman said, Reier heard from her voice that she was a Berliner, an extremely long way from home. She got to her feet and dropped the towel that she had over her shoulders and reached for her clothes. Reier saw that she was wearing a swimsuit that left absolutely nothing to the imagination and had the body for it. Then Reier glanced around and saw all the men of his Squad were staring at her agape.

“You Worms act like you’ve never seen a woman before! Eyes out if you do not want me to pluck them from your worthless heads!” Reier yelled before turning back to the woman, “Sorry about that Ma’am. Who are you, anyway?”

“I was called Katze when I was at Judenbach” She answered. This woman was one of the legendary founders of the Judenbach Special Warfare School where the SKA and MA came from?

As Reier watched as the couple swiftly dressed and loaded a few bags onto the helicopter. At least the two of them seemed to be experienced in this sort of thing. The men boarded the helicopter and Reier watched the beach fell away. Katze had grabbed a pair of headphones and was talking to the pilot confirming Reier’s thought that she knew what she was doing. After a time, the SMS Graf von Richthofen came into view. The helicopter landed on the steel deck.

Kat walked with the Marine Infantry below decks until she was redirected to a tiny stateroom where she was left with Douglas. “Thank you” She said, “I’m sure that…”

Then he kissed her, stopping her mid-sentence.

“I should thank you” Doug said as he grabbed one of the bags, he opened it to the rolls of undeveloped film in their sealed canisters. “You kept these safe and we need to pay for this vacation somehow.”

“I’m sure your agent will like that” Kat said sitting down on the bunk with the thin mattress and Doug walked to the door. “Where are you going?”

“There’s always a photo lab on these tubs and I’ve work to do” Doug said with a smile.

With that he closed the door and Kat no longer had to pretend everything was fine. She felt the weight of depression crash down on her.
I not sure Doug has made a bad call, Kat will have to be alone at some time and when he comes back from the dark room he will have the photographs to show Kat as a distraction and as a positive from their time in the campo.
After a bit I wonder if Kat and Reier can get together, have a couple of beers and convene an ad-hoc meeting of the International Brother- and Sisterhood of Them What Has Been Shot At [0]. Well, once he's able to get past that this is THE legendary Katze from Judenbach, the inspiration for the SKA collar patch.

[0] IIRC from Bill Mauldin in Up Front.
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Random Thoughts:
Grand Admiral von Schmidt is the one pushing this operation because he wants to show that Germany needs a navy to project force in the world.
This will also show to the Grand Admiral that there is a need for nuclear powered ships and he is going to press the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute to step up research on nuclear power.
Having a platoon of Sea Lions aboard is a great idea as it allows for greater flexibility in mission options and there may be a "Special Weapon" or two on the ship.
If we are drawing paralells, one of them is Stresemann.
Not really, the crisis Stresemann led Deutschland through was not present ITTL where as the Americans are facing even greater racial strife. Not having Stresemann for Deutschland ITTL is like not having JFK for OTL Cuban Missile Crisis ITTL.

The various Wars on X (starting a "crisis" and having others (europeans, south americans, asians) pay for it), the arbitary use of "free market" to mean "anything not in favor to the USA/its companies", the projecting of racial tensions to europe, the stoking of those tensions in itself, the hating on everything "socialist", the hating on everything "fascist". Basically, the tendency to see everything very polarised and - which the externalising part - forcing its vassals/allies to see things the same way. This is often far more destructive for them than for the USA, since they are often closer to the source of the trouble. The forcing bit comes from their abuse of the dominant economic position.
Yes, most of this is infuriatingly idiotic.
Part 48, Chapter 637
Chapter Six Hundred Thirty-Seven

31st December 1947

South Atlantic, East of San Clemente del Tuyú

“Word has gotten around” The Ship’s Doctor said pleasantly, “All the Corpsmen are afraid of you after that suggestion you made with the offer of a practical demonstration. While I think that what you did will serve his eventual wife and daughters well, it was a little extreme. It’s our job to ask questions like that.”

“You can ask questions all you want” Kat replied, “But is it too much to not offer commentary as well?” The Ship’s Doctor was pleasant enough, the Corpsman in question had been obnoxious and immature regarding certain questions. He had asked a question and then the follow up question regarding her certainty regarding that answer. There were some questions that men should never be allowed to ask, this was one of those. That was when Kat had asked some questions of her own.

“I am curious though” The Doctor said, “Can you really approximate the feeling of menstrual cramps in men with electrocution?”

“And childbirth” Kat said, “But it’s considered torture under the Geneva Conventions.”

The Doctor laughed at that, “That would be quite an education” He said, “From what I’ve seen from your Sea Lion counterparts I wouldn’t put anything past someone like you.” With that the Doctor left.

Kat didn’t think that the Doctor was taking that seriously, it had not been an idle threat. It was the usual sort of battle she had fought again and again for the last several years. Surrounded by men who had to learn that her personal boundaries were strung with concertina wire. Small wonder she always seemed to end up back in the Court of the Empress. At the same time, she understood the reasoning for what was happening. The SMS Graf von Richthofen was effectively a closed ecosystem. If anyone brought an exotic bug aboard the results could be catastrophic. The problem was that the way they had gone about it had left a great deal to be desired.

Not that everything was bad, Doug had come back from working in the photo lab with an envelope of the photographs that he had taken of them atop the ridge in the Andes. He was right about the two photographs of them standing together, Aunt Marcella was going to love those. The one of her sitting there alone was good, Doug said that he wanted to publish it. Kat alone with the magnificent backdrop revealed the sheer scale of the landscape. She had thought that she had looked terrible that day, but she looked like an adventurer in the finished picture. It belonged in a mountaineering magazine.

Kat laid down on her bunk, Douglas was off doing whatever he was doing. He had hundreds of photographs to develop, and as he had put it, those were going to pay for this vacation, Kat could hardly begrudge that. She must have fallen asleep because there was a knocking on the door. Kat opened it and a Cadet was shuffling nervously.

“Major von Mischner” He said, “If you could come with me.”

He led Kat through the ship, after a few minutes she would have been hopelessly lost had she been alone. Then they were walking through a cavernous hanger full of clamorous work that must be going constantly here, day and night. Then through a hatch and they were in open air. Kat saw that she was standing at a rail that was at the stern of the ship. Doug was standing there in the luminescent wake of the Aircraft Carrier.

“I know that we had planned to spend to spend New Year’s in Buenos Aires” Doug said as he popped the cork on a bottle of Champagne he had acquired from somewhere and poured it into a paper cup that he handed her. “Looks like we’re here instead.”

“I’ve spent worse” Kat said, “What time is it?”

Doug looked at his watch in the dim light. “Local time, eleven fifty-eight.”

Kat took a sip of the Champagne, she was here just in time.

They stood there at the rail for a long minute waiting. Somewhere nearby, they could hear men counting down to midnight. Then in what could only be described as a flagrant violation of regulations some of the crew up on the deck fired off several signal flares. It was a good tradition, Kat shared a kiss with Doug as the sky lit up with flashes of red, green and white.

Buenos Ares, Argentina

Reier walked with his squad through the darkened city until they entered a building and dug in, as per their request the loyalist faction of the Argentine Army had pulled back. The Coup might have failed but that didn’t mean that Putschists were giving up without a fight. The leadership was holed up in the Palace of the National Congress and the elected Government of Argentina had asked their German allies for assistance in ending the Coup with prompt dispatch, the building was expendable. Reier looked across the wide plaza with his binoculars. The poor stubborn fools in that building had been given until midnight to surrender. They had chosen not to.

The radio operator was talking quietly into the mic of his radio. The new mobile encoder was a wonder but Reier couldn’t even pretend that he knew how it worked or exactly what it did. He just knew that they could radio each other without anyone listening in. The radio operator was telling a series of numbers to the ships waiting in the river just outside the city. The afternoon before the Argentine Navy, having only a handful of formerly British and German Battleships and Battlecruisers leftover from the First World War had opted not to commit suicide on behalf of a lost cause. The result was that what about to happen was going to happen.

“Fire” The radio operator calmly said and Reier heard a distant BOOM! A few seconds later something crashed into the building and yellow smoke was pouring out of a large hole in the roof.


Albrecht, along with the rest of the crew had been unable to have any New Year’s parties because the ship had remained in General Quarters all night. Now that it was just past midnight Albrecht was getting targeting data and this was not an exercise. Below him, he could hear machinery running as powder and shells were being hoisted up from the magazine. Then more machinery started as the turret turned. He had typed in the inputs, the measures of powder and the gun angles as they had come in. Then a red light came on signifying that Bruno turret was under local control. That meant that the plotting room was doing calculations for the ten 15cm guns in the secondary battery on that side of the ship. Albrecht’s mouth went dry when he realized that meant the Rhineland was going to fire a full broadside, into a city. The red light went out and the green one came on, saying that the gunnery tower was back online. Albrecht received a new set of numbers that he was requested to run and confirm. He keyed confirmation. There was a distant echo of the ranging shot fired by Anton turret, long seconds passed. Then the entire ship got the order, fire for effect.

Albrecht couldn’t directly hear it, being buried deep in the turret but he saw the 42cm gun recoil. Christoph hit a button sending a blast of compressed air through the barrel then hit the button to open the gun breech. Then the second shell landed in the tray in front of the ram which pushed it into place, followed by bags of premeasured powder and ballistic filler. The breech closed with a loud clank and the second broadside fired twelve seconds after the first.


Reier was watching as the first shells landed. 15cm if he had to guess. The Fleet could do better than that he thought to himself just as thirty-two 42cm shells arrived, all at once. His mind was still trying to process what he had just seen as he saw the smoking hole where a building had just stood.

“Hell of a way to ring in the new year” He muttered to himself.
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