In South Africa the OKW should send the Heer's Alpine units (which should be by now helicopter borne) and a couple of Battalions of MA and SKA to be used as a quick reaction force that will be able to track down the attackers of the convoys before they can melt into the countryside.

Some of reactions that Jehane is getting from the older university students who were conscripted for the war is because there is a misplaced sentiment that if the Empress wasn't a Romanov then Germany and the USSR would have not gone to war.
As more and more Soviet state documents are released and translated, it will show that the Soviet Union wanted to go to war with Germany before 1943 or else Germany would be too far ahead economically and militarily.
 
In South Africa the OKW should send the Heer's Alpine units (which should be by now helicopter borne) and a couple of Battalions of MA and SKA to be used as a quick reaction force that will be able to track down the attackers of the convoys before they can melt into the countryside.

Some of reactions that Jehane is getting from the older university students who were conscripted for the war is because there is a misplaced sentiment that if the Empress wasn't a Romanov then Germany and the USSR would have not gone to war.
As more and more Soviet state documents are released and translated, it will show that the Soviet Union wanted to go to war with Germany before 1943 or else Germany would be too far ahead economically and militarily.
The latter i can agree with, but this? As a former german "Gebirgsjäger" myself, and knowing something of the subject, this to me is something of a paradoxon, alpine troops are generally regarded as elite light infantry yes, but are not as a matter of course trained for air cavalry/ air assault type tactics... while the heer will by now have a suitably large helicopter transport capacity for their own needs, there still needs to be retraining before these types of tactics can be performed, training which would not as a matter of course be offered for alpine formations but rather to formations that are expected to perform these actions regularly. You don't need alpine light infantry for that, regular light infantry whose task in future will include these operations(air cavalry/air assault) would be preferred, especially if you're trying to get your own "Falschirmjäger" equivalten like the Heer is, or if you're just carting them around anyway you also you use "regular" jägers.

The sensible option of course, being to bite the bullet and ask the Luftwaffe for some of their "Green Devils"
 
Don't forget the Marine infantry has been using helicopters also. Might be a way to get a joint group together so everyone can share the "glory".
 
Part 52, Chapter 707
Chapter Seven Hundred Seven


29th January 1949

Berlin

According to Generalmajor Walter Koch, Judenbach was locked down. There had been some wild talk about going to the American Capital and taking Thorwald’s rifle from whatever evidence locker it had been shoved into. The General had quashed that sort of talk but the reason why Kat was sitting in Gert’s tonight was that it was the one place in Berlin that she could be sure that this meeting could take place and not leave an official record, as far as the larger world was concerned this meeting never happened. Personally, she had no intention of leaving Berlin. Her classes at the Police Academy were going well and she just needed to complete the Summer term and another field assignment, she was now more than past the halfway point in her training. There was simply no way that she was going to jeopardize all of that after putting in so much work. Instead, she was playing hostess.

Johann Schultz, Fritz Schafer, Juan Pujol-Garcia and Kat herself were present. Martzel Ibarra had sent his regrets but he couldn’t leave his ranch in Argentina on such short notice. That accounted for the surviving members of Team WW43B. Matthias Schmied and Reynaud Harmon from SKA Team 2A were present. Unlike Matthias, Reynaud had left the Fallschirmjäger Corps after the war and had turned his skills as a radio operator into a lucrative civilian career. This was the first time that either Kat or Matthias had seen him since he’d requested reassignment from the SKA back to the regular Paras after the mission to Belarus in May of 1942. He’d somehow learned about what was brewing and had asked to be invited. He was useful tonight because he had the expertise to make sure that there were no unwelcome ears listening in on this conservation.

The locals had been cleared out of Gert’s, for a private party, they’d been told. It was not without precedent, even if it had resulted in a great deal of grumbling. There were still more guests coming. It came as a shock the have Generalfeldmarschall Emil von Holz and Generaloberst Horst show up along with Former Chancellor Augustus Lang and Pastor Piers Sjostedt. Gert, just took the drink orders like he normally did to his credit. He had to know that the people who were being seen entering his tavern would have tongues wagging all over Pankow in the coming weeks.

“The reason for this meeting is not what people might think it is” Schultz said once everyone had everything in order, “The rifle is of little overall consequence.”

There were many who would disagree with that, in this room to be exact. Those who knew Thorwald personally were very vocal about it and everyone was talking at Schultz at once for even saying such a thing. Except for Sjostedt that was, he sat in the corner quietly observing.

“The real reason is why I invited Pastor Sjostedt here tonight” Schultz continued, “The Russians have spent years playing coy regarding Heinz. This is the first time that we’ve found ourselves with a thread to follow if we’re to find out what happened to him.”

There had been many teams from the SKA who had vanished during the war. They had been hunted down by the Soviets or were unlucky and had suffered some sort of misadventure. After the war ended significant effort had gone into accounting for these teams. While most had been accounted for, Heinz Thorwald had remained a large question mark.

“We have to let this play out” Emil said, “Let the Amis do their investigation.”

That also resulted in another storm of protest. No one had a great deal of faith in the Americans to conduct a thorough, impartial investigation. If they decided that the SKA/BND had been the culprits, then some of the prime suspects would being sitting in this very room. Not that it stopped them from laughing at the comments that Reynaud made about the FBI being a bunch of feckless cowboys. That resulted in the question being asked, how did they nudge the Americans into conducting a proper investigation?

“Sven Werth should be sent to Washington” Kat said, “I’ve worked with him in the past and he’s never been BND or Abwehr, so the FBI is more likely to listen to him.”

Kat had been told by Gert about the conversation that Sven Werth had with her father. Supposedly, Werth had Otto dead to rights on the Beck murder but had not arrested him in the interest of justice. Kat had a feeling that there was something more that Bert wasn’t telling her about that conversation, but she had let that go. Her family needed someone like Bert who they could trust implicitly. If Bert wasn’t telling her something, there was probably a good reason. It meant that Kat figured that she had a good measure of Werth and his discretion.

“I’m willing to go as well” Sjostedt said, “This is a matter of the spirit whether you lot care to admit it or not.”

“I can call General Patton” Horst added, “The Commandant of the West Point Academy has a lot of pull within the circles of power in the United States.”

Horst had formed an unlikely friendship with his American counterpart. Patton always had time for the bastard who took Moscow.

“If you do that, he’ll consider it favor” Lang said with a smile, “He’ll finally have the leverage to get you to write that book.” Horst scowled at that remark. General Patton had been leaning on Horst to write a book for the West Point Library since they had met just after the war.

“He’ll want more than that” Horst said, “If this is about Heinz Thorwald then he’ll want details, someone who worked directly with the man.”

Everyone looked at Kat. “I’ve obligations here in Berlin and the FBI has a lot of reasons to dislike me.” She didn’t need to mention the destructive one-day campaign she’d waged against the Seattle Field Office of the FBI when she’d been there. She wasn’t in any hurry to see what would happen if they ever learned she’d been behind that. There were plenty of other things she’d done.

“That leaves Schmied and Schafer” Emil said. Both were Airborne and SKA, currently they were Noncoms posted in the 1st Imperial Foot Guard. They were perfect to talk to Patton.

That settled it then.
 
Last edited:
If any group wants to stoke up ill-feelings in the US for Germany, in addition to Dr. Tangeman's information packets they could emphasize the differences in the observances of Armistice/Remembrance Day. Remember this from Kat's trip to Canada:

Earlier that day they had gone to watch a parade. In Germany the Armistice Day parades were wild, raucous affairs. Here in Canada it was Remembrance Day and the parade was solemn. It was perfectly in keeping with the narratives surrounding the First Great War. For Germany the white peace had been seen as a victory while the rest of the world saw it as years of horrific sacrifice for what had seemed like very little gain.

I'd think there are lots of men like Nancy's father who would be absolutely enraged if they were shown newsreel coverage.
 
why do i suddenly have the image of thorwald living the quiet life somewhere in the siberian tundra in my head?:rolleyes:
or maybe that's just my brain trying to cope with the fact that @Peabody-Martini pulling a Captain Pryce with Thorwald is far too obvious to be plausible:pensive:
 
I wonder if Walter von Horst and Patton has realized that they first met in The Great War when Horst as a NCO let Patton to back to his lines when he was cut off and hiding in a barn and Horst did not want to be bothered by taking prisoners but also not wanting to kill anyone needlessly.
 
Part 52, Chapter 708
Chapter Seven Hundred Eight


5th February 1949

Washington D.C.

He could think of better things he could be doing in the predawn hours than sitting in the airport. John’s wife had been overjoyed that he’d been transferred from the Seattle Field Office back to D.C. this time he was a Supervisory Agent. Seattle might have been a major seaport on the rapidly developing Pacific Rim but for the FBI it lived up to it’s reputation as being an isolated posting, far from the center of power and action. Unfortunately, action in this case involved sitting in the National Airport as the overnight flight from Berlin came in. John had the added stress of not knowing what the people they were expecting might have been told about him by the BND.

“One of these people really is named Fritz if you’d believe that” Ed Ross, one of John’s team said.

“I read the manifest” John said, “Fritz Schafer is an Oberstabsfeldwebel, to the Germans that’s something more than an Army Sergeant Major, so keep any snide observations to yourself.”

“Whatever” Ed replied.

A few days earlier the Germans had responded to the request for information regarding the tracing of the rifle used in the assassination attempt. It seemed that Mauser AG had informed the German Government and it had resulted in a debate over the course of action that they would take. The rifle’s action, a Mauser 98 magnum length, had been produced by them in 1934 at the direction of Heinz Thorwald and shipped to Suhl to be blue-printed, barreled and chambered in 8.5mm SP, then an obscure wildcat cartridge but soon to be adopted by the German Army and Airforce for long distance sniping. Heinz Thorwald, the Colonel commanding the elite Special Warfare Division in Judenbach was listed as Missing-in-Action, Presumed Deceased. The German Government was extremely interested in bringing Thorwald home and were hoping that this was a lead that would enable them to recover the man’s remains.

The Administration, the US State Department and the FBI had been informed that the German Government was hoping to expedite the investigation and were sending their own people to facilitate that. Five people were coming, two soldiers from the 1st Imperial Foot Guard, two BII Agents and of all things a Lutheran Minister. John had asked about that last part, it seemed that the Pastor, Piers Sjostedt, had worked for decades in the cause of peace and international dialog. In that context in made perfect sense that such a man had involved himself.

The passengers, mostly businessmen but a few families as well started walking off the plane. Two men in the dark blue formal uniforms of German Army got off the plane. One was in his late thirties and the other was still in his twenties, both were highly decorated. The two men who followed them had the look of Police about them. John presumed that these were Sven Werth and Gunther Kassmeyer, a Detective Inspector and Senior Detective Constable in the German BII, an Agency that John hadn’t known existed until a day earlier. A branch of the German Federal Police, they dealt with Counter-Intelligence, Interstate crime and assisted local Police Departments in high profile cases. Basically, the German counterpart of the FBI.

They were followed by a strange looking man, not particularly tall, pale, greying black hair and an odd beak of a nose. He looked at them with grey-blue eyes that seemed to look right through them. “You are the gentlemen from the Federal Bureau of Investigation who are to meet us?” He asked in an American accent.

“I thought you were German?” Ed asked.

Sjostedt just smiled at that, “I’ve lived most of my life in Germany, but I was born in Arizona” He replied.

Yeah, this bunch was just full of surprises.


Berlin

It was a sunny Saturday morning and Gianna was laying on her bed watching the motes of rainbow that the glass prism hanging upon a string in the window cast upon the ceiling. She’d tried to study but had found it impossible to concentrate, what Doctor Holz had told her the afternoon before kept ringing through her head. A lot of what he’d said Gia was not prepared to hear. “Before you can move on you have to examine your life and determine just who you are and how you fit into the world” was how he’d put it. There were several details that he’d tried to get her to talk about, things that she’d not wanted to think too deeply about before. Why her mother, Tatiana, had forced the Russian agents to kill her rather than risk capture. Why she had done that? Gia had never thought the implications through. Her mother had been a prisoner of the Bolsheviks, people who thought she was subhuman filth at best, for almost a year before Leon Trotsky had arranged her and her family's release. Did Gia think that was all garden parties and sunlight? Instead her mother had made sure that Gia would be as safe as she could manage and sold her life as dearly as she could.

Then Doctor Holz made a shocking observation, in many respects she had in fact died in that snowy forest in British Columbia. It marked the end of Gia’s childhood and innocence. The only thing that Gia had in common with the Jehane who had been pushed out the back door was that they happened to be the same person. That marked two profoundly different paths that her life could have gone down. In one, the Russian agents never came, she stayed with her family and eventually moved to Montreal where her life proceeded however it would have. Then there was the life she had. She’d lost her family and gained another.

“Are you going to sit there brooding all day” Asia asked. A reminder that Gia’s situation was not as unique as it seemed. Her friend had lost even more than she had, and Asia had started with a lot less to lose. Recently, Asia had gotten a letter from the State Government of Silesia, her parents were eligible to be declared legally dead and they wanted to know how she intended divide what remained of her family’s estate among her younger siblings. Asia had lost track of her younger bothers and sisters when they had all been put in State care during the war. Now she was having to track them down so that money from the sale of her family’s farm could be used to help give them a start in life. It was proving difficult; Asia’s youngest sister had been only two-years-old when they’d been separated.

“I’ve a lot on my mind” Gia replied, “Everything’s a mess, for all of us.”

“Who said that we’re all getting a happy ending?” Asia remarked.

“Ilse got one” Gia said, “She got the family she always wanted and she’s doing exactly what she wants.”

“Don’t be silly, Ilse has a father who is a nightmare, older siblings who barely have time for her and of her mother’s family in Lübben only her Uncle is mentally aware that she’s not her dead mother” Asia said, “You ever wonder why she spends every second she can with Helene’s son?”

Manfred was Ilse’s nephew, but what Asia had said made sense. How many times had any one of them got what seemed to be exactly what they wanted only to have it not all it was supposed to be?
 
Last edited:
They could look for who took Thorwald's rifle from the other direction. Somebody had to have said, "Send a company into that mess to see if we got them." A private or noncom would have found it then it would have wound up with the company commander and then the regimental colonel by the principle of RHIP. Look for Infantry colonels commanding regiments operating in the right area at the right time whose finances took an abrupt turn for the better recently. For corroboration ask around the junior enlisted about rifles they'd found that the colonels wound up with.

They couldn't have done this earlier because there weren't any indications that his rifle had survived.

You'd also find out where Thorwald's body might be.
 

FBKampfer

Banned
They could look for who took Thorwald's rifle from the other direction. Somebody had to have said, "Send a company into that mess to see if we got them." A private or noncom would have found it then it would have wound up with the company commander and then the regimental colonel by the principle of RHIP. Look for Infantry colonels commanding regiments operating in the right area at the right time whose finances took an abrupt turn for the better recently. For corroboration ask around the junior enlisted about rifles they'd found that the colonels wound up with.

They couldn't have done this earlier because there weren't any indications that his rifle had survived.

You'd also find out where Thorwald's body might be.

I think PM has said that the Russians were basically stonewalling on that matter.

"the records were destroyed by a bomb" is pretty hard to argue with if they were thorough enough (and destruction of records may be the one bureaucratic endeavor in which Stalinist Russia both was efficient and thorough).
 
I don't think that the Russian government is in full control of the post Soviet bureaucratic holdovers who may have their own agendas.
We are also dealing with historic Russian paranoia and they are stonewalling as a natural response to the outside world.
 
Chapter Seven Hundred Six


27th January 1949

Cape Town, South Africa

The others around the bar were having a grand old time tonight. Nelson found that he was reluctant to join in. What they were celebrating was that the Germans had kicked the Boers nuts up between their ears again. Nelson’s problem was that he had met with the one of the architects of the Boer’s latest embarrassment and that man had warned him that the ANC could be next on the list if things didn’t change. “Whether its bullets or the ballot box, Herr Mandela” was how von Mischner had put it during their last meeting. “You need to be the leader that your people need, and that includes winning the peace.” The thing that Nelson found most objectionable was that the German Intelligence Officer was probably right about that.

“You look like your dog just died” Butho, Nelson’s friend and sometimes bodyguard said. “It’s a good night, join us.”

Nelson was about to give an answer when, shots rang out on the street and bullets started flying through the crowded bar. Out of long practice everyone hit the floor, but Nelson could see that several had been slow to react and were bleeding.

“Get everyone out the back before they petrol bomb this place” Nelson said to Butho who was as surprised as anyone with the sudden violence.

The bar was backed by a crowded shanty town, there was no way anyone could move through unnoticed. It was a detail that had saved them many times when dealing with Government troops and Police. Now, Nelson didn’t need to look to know that these were probably Boers, angered by their recent setbacks and going after low hanging fruit. The Germans were behind barbed wire and sandbags, they’d chop anyone who bothered them to pieces. As Nelson helped a man who’d been shot through the thigh out of the back door of the bar it occurred to him that his choice had been made for him tonight by the Boers. His faction of the ANC could no longer sit on the fence and watch the Whites kill each other. He preferred to be on his own side, but his enemies had enemies and it was time to use that.

Mandela and company are dumber than rocks. That bunch of Boers should have been ambushed on the street by the two thirds of his force who aren't having a drink. Followed by a hunt for the ones who guided them there. If they go to a bar often enough for it to be known as an ANC hangout they need to go to other bars on a random schedule.

Rudolph Hess watched as the bar burned, it was an establishment that members of the African National Congress were known to patronize. He’d personally objected to this operation but had been overruled. The Boer leadership that he’d been advising had felt the need to show that they still had fight after a few reverses in the field.

This batch of Boers are also dumber than rocks. This was a weenie-waving exercise with limited success. Better to surround the building before opening fire, that way none of your targets can run away.

Harry Truman had finally made it back to the White House. The Doctor’s had ordered him to take it easy, but he had other ideas. He’d spent the last several days trapped in a hospital bed, that was no way to run the country. Instead he made his way straight to the Oval Office. “For starters, I doubt that the Krauts had a damned thing to do with this” Truman said, “Leaving the rifle on the scene was sloppy and that is not their style.”

“With all due respect, Sir” Robert Dennison, the National Security Advisor said, “How do you know about their style?”

Harry Truman smiled at that, “I met the son of a bitch who would have been running the son of a bitch who would have taken the damned shot” He replied, “They would have had us running in circles and then spending several months chasing after a suspect who’s been dead for weeks while their own people returned to the fatherland as heroes. I sat on the Intelligence Committee in the Senate and you’d be shocked how many times that happened.”

Several of the journalists who had accompanied the President from the hospital were scribbling in their notebooks as Truman concluded.

“Sir” The Press Secretary said, “Are you sure that you should be saying that?”

Truman turned the journalists, “You can quote me on that” He said. The Press Secretary was shocked by Truman’s choice of actions in this case.

“Sir?” Dennison asked, “Why did you say that?”

“Don’t get me wrong” Truman said, “Collectively the Krauts are a bunch of double-dealing polecats who have their hands in everyone else’s pockets and there is nothing they won’t do to get the better part of every deal. I just don’t think they were involved with what happened the other day.”

“How can you be so certain of that?”

“Kraut snipers are trained to do head or quartering shots” Truman said, “You know that?”

“Excuse me?”

“Exactly what the bastard who shot me didn’t do” Truman replied, “Now, we’ve a Goddamned country to run.”

It's really good to see a US President with a grasp of how international economics work. And an appreciation of how WW43B's operations went.

For some reason I'm reminded of the story of the general who ignored a sentry to the point where the sentry wound up shooting at him, then chewing out the sentry for missing. Of course, it could be apocryphal.
 
Last edited:
For some reason I'm reminded of the story of the general who ignored a sentry to the point here the sentry wound up shooting at him, then chewing out the sentry for missing. Of course, it could be apocryphal.

That might actually be Stalin. When his son Yakov was forbidden from marrying, Yakov attempted to commit suicide, shooting himself, but surviving. Stalin's first words to Yakov were "Ha! Missed!" according to the story. Also according to the story, Stalin took Yakov out shooting when he recovered to improve his aim
 
The ANC is new to the concept of organised military structure and combat, they just got a painful lesson in protecting their base of operations and in setting up a system of lookout and sentry.

The Boers are mostly a rural based force and are not well versed in urban combat operations and were very lucky that they were able to get away.

What could be effective for the Germans in patrolling out in the veld is mounted troops who would be able to go where motorized forces can't get to.
 
Top