[QUOTE="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.[/QUOTE]

Gosh... Don't we some pamperd rich kids playing cavalery in Berlin??? Get those slackers down right Now... We will show them how real soldiers do it....
 
Part 52, Chapter 709
Chapter Seven Hundred Nine


7th February 1949

It was yet one more time that she watched someone stumble over her name, Freiherrin Nizhoni Iris von Horst. There were actual laws regarding the names of children in Germany but in Nizhoni’s case she’d been named by her mother who was half Diné and had given her a name that meant beautiful in the language of those people. Not that the woman who was talking to her didn’t have an interesting story. Currently, there were a number of rumors swirling about Gianna Strobel. Whispers that she was really Jehane Thomas-Romanova, a name with a dark and tragic past. In December, when Nizhoni had been introduced before the Imperial Court, Gianna had spent the entire time preoccupied with this matter. Behind the scenes there were whispers that it had been suggested that she be replaced as Kammerfräulein if she didn’t put her personal problems aside and start taking her duties seriously again. That had not happened, but from Nizhoni’s perspective she couldn’t exactly blame Gianna. Apparently, that movie had gotten it right as far as her stumbling through a snowbound forest, bleeding out while trying to find safety was concerned. Only she hadn’t died in the end if the rumors were true. Nizhoni would have been surprised if something like that hadn’t left a mark.

When her father had first told her that she was coming here, Nizhoni had been reluctant. The whole idea of the “Maid of the Court” had been to introduce young women before Society so that they could be married off. It certainly maintained the veneer of that except as she had discovered, the current Empress and her predecessor had quietly subverted that. The Court of the Empress was decidedly not what she was expecting. When the Empress had made her introduction Nizhoni had been peppered with questions. What were her personal ambitions? Was she planning on finishing her education and did that include going to University? What were her interests? That had gone on for more than an hour and she’d found herself answering questions about herself that should have horrified her, things she had never even told her mother. Sitting there silently the whole time was Gräfin von Mischner, hands folded on her lap and watching her with cold eyes. That was also Nizhoni’s first introduction to the Order of Louise. The Gräfin had worn the Grand Cross of the Order pinned to the front of the green uniform tunic she was wearing, that and the Pour-le-Mérite around her neck told the world that she had nothing to prove to anyone.

Today, Nizhoni was making her way from the Gymnasia to the Hohenzollern Palace, walking with Gianna Strobel. The Empress had requested her attendance this afternoon. Fortunately, the Panzers that had been parked in front of the Palace were gone and the soldiers who guarded the place had gone back to the blue uniforms. Personally, Nizhoni was pleased to see things go back to normal. She’d heard too many jokes about someone breaking wind at an inopportune moment and finding themselves looking down the 8.8cm barrel of a Lynx and the Panzer Commander screaming “Do it again, I dare you!” in recent days. Having spent her childhood moving between her father’s various postings, she knew that joke had quite a bit of reality behind it. Particularly when the soldiers were on edge like they’d been the prior two weeks.

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The Empress was sitting in her sunroom on the third floor, the double-paned bay windows kept the room warm even in the coldest days of winter. She liked how the natural light filled the room, today might have been overcast but the light was still adequate. Nizhoni von Horst was sitting on the far side of the table. When the girl had arrived a few months earlier, she’d been without direction, her whole life dictated by her domineering parents. Her father, Walter von Horst cast a colossal shadow as a Generaloberst and her mother, Nina von Horst-Sjostedt was a well-respected educator. Kira saw it as her duty to help her find that direction.

“Hold it, there” Kira said as she was sketching Nizhoni’s face and she was having hold it in the best light. She’d heard that the make up of the Sjostedt family was Navajo Indian and Danish. She had met Nizhoni’s Uncle Piers on several occasions and you could see it in his features. With Nizhoni it had manifested differently. She lacked the beak of a nose that her Uncle had. Instead Nizhoni had high-cheek bones and a heart-shaped face framed by hair that was of a deep black. Nizhoni also had translucent skin, which enabled Kira to see the blemish that was rising on Nizhoni’s chin. The joys of being sixteen, Kira thought to herself.

Gia was playing with Marie and Victoria. The twins were starting to gain individual personalities, but they were still very much in a world of their own with its own rules and even language. They were still difficult for others to tell apart, something that Kira had never have a problem with. Vicky was the more assertive of the two, it was likely that in the coming years she’d become a friend and protector to the more introverted Marie. Considering some of the people Kira knew, there were worse things than being an introvert. With that Vicky pushed the stack of blocks she’d been piling up with her sister. As it crashed to the floor, Nizhoni to turn her head in that direction causing Kira to have to start the process of getting her back into position.

Nizhoni seemed patient with the entire process. It was the sort of thing that Kira used to gauge the personalities of her people. That was interesting.
 
Congratulations on the Turtledove. Your timeline is such an enjoyable read. It is all the more remarkable for the amount you write: over 700 chapters in 15 months.
 
Congratulations on the Turtledove. Your timeline is such an enjoyable read. It is all the more remarkable for the amount you write: over 700 chapters in 15 months.
He might get two. Just a few more hours until the best character poll closes, and Kat leads by a single vote.
 
Part 52, Chapter 710
Chapter Seven Hundred Ten


9th February 1949

Werder

Kurt was giving Eisenseiten a good workout, the big bay charger seemed to enjoy the run as much he did. It was felt good to be out even if it was a chilly day. The crunch of snow under Eisenseiten’s hooves and icy wind was bracing. He was wearing a long black greatcoat and had a scarf double wrapped around his face. This was a nice distraction from what had been brewing in the OKW, there was talk of sending the 2nd Life Hussars into the field. Something that he had never thought was a possibility. He’d been told that as things thawed out this Spring he would need to up the tempo of training in preparation for deployment, to South Africa. Not only was the 2nd Hussars was considered a fully fledged Panzer Regiment, they were considered an elite public face of the Panzer Corps and the detail that they were horse cavalry made them suddenly useful in the field in the wide-open spaces of the Veldt. It hadn’t been determined yet if Kurt would deploy with them, he had seen how Gerta’s friend Helene had reacted to her husband’s sudden deployment and hoped that Gerta would take it better. Suse Rosa was year old and the thought of leaving her and Gerta for months on end was not something he looked forward to.

There was also the other matter. The previous month Kurt had found himself back in the commander’s cupola of a Panzer when the 2nd had gone on alert following the events on the 20th of January. It had been like coming home for him, not that he had a problem with Eisenseiten, but he had liked having a mount that didn’t seem an opinion of its own like a horse certainly did. He was coming up on two years in the 2nd Hussars, that meant that he had the option of going back to the regular Panzer Corps with his choice as to the next posting, his old outfit 104th Panzer Brigade being the most likely. One of the perks of being in the Palace Guard. He wondered what Gerta would make of moving to Posen if he wasn’t getting sent to South Africa.


West Point, New York

“I don’t know if you remember, but this is actually the second time we’ve met, Pastor” George Patton said as they walked through corridor.

“After Ussy-sur-Marne” Sjostedt replied, “I recall that.”

“No one believed me when I said that the Krauts… Uhm the Germans, just let me go.”

“It’s alright General” Sjostedt said, “I’ve been called many things far worse than that.”

“I’m sure you have, but that was quite a moment” Patton said, “I thought I’d end up dead or in a prison camp.”

“Not that I blame you, the three of us got to go home after that, that’s what was important.”

“Yes” Patton agreed, “That other fellow who was with you, the one in the dented helmet. What became of him?”

Sjostedt just smiled at that, as if it were a joke that Patton wasn’t in on. “He stayed in the Heer after the war and I left” He said, “I’ll tell Walter that you asked about him.”

“You’re saying that was Walter Horst?” Patton asked.

“Who else?” Sjostedt replied, “He was still a Stabsfeldweble back then but that was him.”

“I’ll be damned” Patton said as two cadets stood at attention as they passed. From what Sjostedt had seen the General ran this place very much by the book.

The two of them had had a wide-ranging conversation in the General’s office before he’d felt the need to stretch his legs. Sjostedt had learned that the General had many eccentricities that were somewhat odd for a man in his position. His belief in predestination and reincarnation were interesting from a purely theological standpoint. General Patton believed that in prior lives he’d witnessed many of the great battles of history. The General then admitted that he’d been sorely disappointed that the battles of the Soviet War and in the Pacific had happened without him, that he’d been cheated by destiny. Patton had a crisis of faith as it were. Sjostedt hadn’t ventured an opinion about that, but the General was certainly entitled to his opinions. As someone who saw the Second World War as the willful destruction of the best of a generation, Sjostedt didn’t share it. Through a lifetime of experience in working with Politicians and Generals Sjostedt was used to keeping his opinions to himself.

“You were a decorated soldier, but left the German Army after the First World War” Patton said, “Care to tell me why?”

“I’d had enough” Sjostedt replied, “By the end of the war, I was worn so threadbare that I couldn’t do it anymore. The task of building a life and finding peace became more important to me.”

“I see” Patton said, “And you don’t regret that choice?”

“Not for an instant.”

The General was silent for a few seconds.

“And those packages?”

It always came back to those. Oddly, Sjostedt was credited with saving hundreds, if not thousands of lives with those. It was amazing the power a jar of jam or a bag of instant coffee might have upon the world.

Entering the mess hall, they saw that Schafer and Matthias had found themselves an audience among the cadets. Sjostedt could only imagine the sort of stories that the two of them were telling. Years among the lunatics of the Fallschirmjäger and SKA tended to leave one with a lot of stories to tell. Sjostedt also noticed that there were a couple of older men, US Army Intelligence if Sjostedt had to guess who were just as drawn as the cadets.
 
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The Heer is finding out that this conflict is something that they are not built for, they are built for the last war with heavy armored vehicles in massive battles of maneuver warfare.
This conflict calls for lighter units fighting in smaller, more intense firefights with opponents who know the terrain like the back of their hands and can hide with a sympathetic populace and strike in any direction and time of their choosing.
Tanks are not needed but APCs providing protection for the convoys are necessary, what is needed is helicopter borne units, to react quickly after any attacks, engineering units to defuse the increasing mining of roads.
The best units right now for the job is the Fallschimjager, the Marine Infantry, and the Alpine units from the Heer.
The SKA and the MA can do what Heinz Thorwald did in Spain and go after the leadership of the various different factions.
 

FBKampfer

Banned
The SKA and the MA can do what Heinz Thorwald did in Spain and go after the leadership of the various different factions.

Too what end? Spain was a pair of feuding brothers, disagreeing on what's best for the family.

South Africa is a couple of people that that don't like each other locked in the same house, and the Germans are there on behalf of the guy who locked them in there.

Germany is about to learn there's some wars where immediate military success doesn't matter.
 
The Heer is finding out that this conflict is something that they are not built for, they are built for the last war with heavy armored vehicles in massive battles of maneuver warfare.
This conflict calls for lighter units fighting in smaller, more intense firefights with opponents who know the terrain like the back of their hands and can hide with a sympathetic populace and strike in any direction and time of their choosing.
Tanks are not needed but APCs providing protection for the convoys are necessary, what is needed is helicopter borne units, to react quickly after any attacks, engineering units to defuse the increasing mining of roads.
The best units right now for the job is the Fallschimjager, the Marine Infantry, and the Alpine units from the Heer.
The SKA and the MA can do what Heinz Thorwald did in Spain and go after the leadership of the various different factions.

No. What is needed is a political agreement where blacks get enough rights to satisfy at 90% of them, boers enough assurances to satisfy at 90% and enough military might to keep peaceful the rest.

Only with military power is impossible to solve most of conflicts. See Irak, Afganistan, Palestina, etc, etc, etc...
 
This was a nice distraction from what had been brewing in the OKW, there was talk of sending the 2nd Life Hussars into the field. Something that he had never thought was a possibility. He’d been told that as things thawed out this Spring he would need to up the tempo of training in preparation for deployment, to South Africa. Not only was the 2nd Hussars was considered a fully fledged Panzer Regiment, they were considered an elite public face of the Panzer Corps and the detail that they were horse cavalry made them suddenly useful in the field in the wide-open spaces of the Veldt.
I really hope someone in the higher reaches of the OKW remembers the Herero Revolt and what happened to most of their nice european cavalry horses... and that what they really need is area control, for which 1 regiment is barely a drop in the bucket. There's a reason why Mounted Riflemen(like Boer Commandoes) were the go to trooptype in that area before infrastructure and technology advanced enough for mechanized and motorised forces to be viable in the terrain.

Also, congratulations @Peabody-Martini on the Turtledove wins, this excellent story certainly deserves it:)
 
Congratulations on the Turtledove wins! Well deserved :D
Germany's Vietnam may be coming, although there's far less jungle in which to hide. Even so, troops will control only where they are standing.
 
Part 52, Chapter 711
Chapter Seven Hundred Eleven


11th February 1949

Washington D.C.

“Ve are all profezzionalz here, yeah” Ed said, imitating Sven Werth’s accent though John couldn’t recall the “yeah” part ever coming from the German Inspector’s mouth. When Sven and Gunther had arrived in the FBI Offices a few days before that was the first thing that Sven had said to the FBI Agents as they were introduced, many including Ed Ross himself were bristling at their intrusion. The Deputy Director in charge of the Counter Intelligence Division had talked to John and told him that the Germans wanted to get to the bottom of the assassination attempt as much as he did. Someone had tried to set them up to play the patsy and while there was plenty of distrust to go around, they wanted the responsible party to pay for what they’d done. The two of them had immediately joined in on doing the thankless work of cataloging the mountain of evidence without complaint. Despite the differences in procedures, John had noticed that they tended to go out of their way to make sure that every T was crossed and every I was dotted.

Then the others in the German party had disappeared from the hotel, John had been informed that they’d gone to Upstate New York and the US Military Academy of all places. The two soldiers and the Pastor had been guests of the Commandant before returning to the hotel yesterday. This morning the story ran in the New York Times that in the First World War, a Corporal and Sergeant had let a Major go after a battle in the Marne Valley in 1917. They had been Piers Sjostedt, Walter Horst and George Patton. The name Horst gave everyone pause, he was the General who took Moscow and then pounded the Japanese into mush. Patton himself was a well-known figure in Military circles. Sjostedt was known internationally as a theologian and was outspoken in his calls for peace, which was probably why the German Government had asked him to help smooth things out here and why he’d accepted. The idea that those three men might have encountered each other on the battlefield of France decades earlier seemed like the sort of thing that bad fiction writers loved to play around with. What if…

“What do you think of our guests?” Ed asked John.

“I think they are Police first” John said, “For good or ill.”

That was one of the details of the FBI, they were Agents of the Federal Government, not necessarily police. When J. Edger Hoover had started the FBI as an offshoot of the US Treasury Department they didn’t even have the power to make arrests and to this day they had Congressmen and Senators who held them with deep suspicion. The untimely death of the very much unlamented Director of the FBI had not helped matters any. To this day no one had any idea where his personal files had vanished to.

“Time for a break?” Gunther Kassmeyer asked.

They had discovered that Gunther was a big, easygoing guy, fond of beer and sports. Someone who was hard to dislike as opposed to Sven who was clearly the brains but was cold and aloof.

“Not really” Ed replied, we’re just taking a moment and what was the last big case you had before this one?”

“The Dirlewanger Case” Gunther replied, “Bad business, that one.”

“How bad?” Ed asked, ignoring John who was trying to wave him off. John knew from the tone of Ed’s voice that he wasn’t taking this seriously, he however knew that was a case that had made the international news when the City-State of Berlin had carried out the execution.

“Oskar Dirlewanger is believed to have killed more than twenty women over a period of years” Gunther said, “He nearly killed Sven as well except Gräfin Katherine shot him twice and he fled.”

“Grey fin Katrina” Ed said, “Who or what is that?”

“She’s Schlüsselfrau to the Kaiserin” Gunther replied, “A very formidable woman who volunteered to work with us.” Ed still didn’t understand what that meant but let it slide.

“And what became of the Oskar Dirlewhatever?”

“He was arrested, tried, found guilty, sent to Spandau Prison” Gunther replied, matter of fact.

“If this perp killed as many you say” Ed remarked, “What sort of justice system is that?”

“You don’t understand” Gunther said while helping himself to the office’s coffee maker, “Spandau is where they send a perp as you call them for justice to be carried out and few stay there for long, Madam Guillotine sees to that.” To add emphasis, Gunther made a cutting motion across his throat.

John heard a bit of muttering in response to that as Gunther walked off to resume his work. As the German Detective walked past some wanted posters on the wall he glanced at them, John thought that he saw a flash of recognition cross his face. Odd.

“They don’t screw around over there” John said, “In case you didn’t know that, it’s straight from the Court to the chopping block once the case has been adjudicated.”

“Damn” Ed said, “Like frontier justice or something?”

“Not quite” John replied, “They considering hanging an insult.”

Looking at the wanted posters John saw several of the ten most wanted posters going back a few years. That was an evergreen bit of public relations. There were several others. John’s eyes locked on one that was no more than a request for information. An artist’s drawing of a homeless woman who was a person of interest, she’d been seen in the proximity of an incident couple years earlier when an apparent sabotage campaign had been carried out against the Seattle Field Office. John had been personally in the investigation of that one before it went cold.
 
Nice one :) I see J Edgar Hoover's end was sooner than in OTL, later than it should have been. Those files are a Chekov's gun waiting to fire at some point :)

Dillinger's still on the most wanted after all these years? Or were they old posters? Either way, the recognition might be something the FBI might look into, although they have a bigger problem right now. At least they're accepting that they have common cause with the Germans.
 
Looking at the wanted posters John saw several of the ten most wanted posters going back a few years. That was an evergreen bit of public relations. There were several others. John’s eyes locked on one that was no more than a request for information. An artist’s drawing of a homeless woman who was a person of interest, she’d been seen in the proximity of an incident couple years earlier when an apparent sabotage campaign had been carried out against the Seattle Field Office. John had been personally in the investigation of that one before it went cold.

{exasperated parent tone of voice}
Darn it Katherine Katja von Mischner, you have attracted additional scrutiny to any red-haired woman entering the United States from Europe.
{/exasperated parent tone of voice}

Gunter won't say anything to the FBI but he may have some words with Kat.
At least Gunter and Sven probably haven't run across John Dillinger.

Edit: Need to add "Turtledove Award for Best Character in 2018" to Kat's list of decorations. What's the medal and ribbon look like?
 
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The idea that those three men might have encountered each other on the battlefield of France decades earlier seemed like the sort of thing that bad fiction writers loved to play around with. What if…

*Chuckle*

Good chapter. Also, congratulations. I'm interested to see if this cooperation results in a thawing of relations
 
*Chuckle*

Good chapter. Also, congratulations. I'm interested to see if this cooperation results in a thawing of relations

That will depend on what gets found out. If there's evidence that some people want to suppress, it could get worse. One surefire way to mess things up, although in an unpredictable way, would be to attempt to kill one of the Germans, but in a way that puts suspicion on the black freedom movement. For that matter, even without that happening, if the Germans get their faces rubbed in the extreme racism of parts of the USA, that could make things far worse.
 
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