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Thread: Chronological Influences III: The Wrath of Stukov

  1. #21
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    Things seem to be going in order...
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    Fulcrumvale:

    anonymous4401: Did you ever doubt it would?

    ---------------------------------



    February 26th, 1936

    General Konev walked hurriedly down a Kremlin corridor, holding tightly onto his dossier of papers, fully aware that he was late for his meeting.

    As the newly promoted Lt. General turned a corner, he nearly ran into General Zhukov going the opposite direction. Before they could collide, Zhukov reacted in time to grab Konev and stop him.

    "Dammit Konev," Zhukov muttered. "Why are you so late?"

    "Because the train got in a half hour late, that's why," Konev replied bitterly. "And I don't want to hear anything more out of you about it."

    "Well, come on," Zhukov relented, walking to the doors to Stalin's conference room. "Fortunately whatever meeting their having is going late, but it's safe to come in."

    Zhukov grabbed the door handle and paused, looking over his shoulder at his fellow general. "And let me do the talking."

    The two generals stepped inside the conference room. It was nearly empty save for Stalin, seated in his usual chair at the head of the table, General Voroshilov, who was in the process of collecting a multitude of scattered papers, Minister Yagoda, and Stalin's little-known aide-de-comp.

    As Konev sat down, his eyes wandered inadvertently down to one of the paper's spread out over the table, labeled Operation Gargantua in bold.

    The paper was immediately snatched up by Yagoda, who regarded the general with a superior smugness. "Some thing's aren't meant to be seen by all, comrade."

    "So, what brings you two here?" Voroshilov asked, eyeing Konev and Zhukov.

    "You are dismissed, comrade," Stalin said, lighting his pipe.

    Voroshilov stiffened and shot a suspicious look at the two before gathering up the rest of his papers and leaving.

    "I take it your train ride to Moscow was satisfactory, comrade?" Yagoda asked Konev with a broad grin.

    Konev had to resist the urge to shiver at that demonic grin. He had heard the rumors of the NKVD chief and frankly, wouldn't have put it past Yagoda to have purposefully delayed the train to make him late. And Konev was not a paranoid individual.

    "It was," Konev said tersely.

    "So," Stalin's aide spoke up, "Sorry to have kept you two waiting."

    Zhukov opened his mouth to speak but Konev interrupted. "I'm sorry, but I don't believe we've been introduced yet."

    The aide hesitated slightly before smiling. "How inconsiderate of me. Alexei Stukov is my name."

    Konev nodded. "Pleased to meet you."

    Zhukov cleared his throat, glaring slightly at Konev warningly. "We are here to report on armoured research and development. We've compiled a report as per your instructions. I hope you find it satisfactory."

    "I'm sure we will," Yagoda commented more to himself than anyone.

    Zhukov's brow furrowed in annoyance. Zhukov spent more time in Moscow than he, and was forced to interact with Yagoda more often.

    "That will be enough, comrade Yagoda," Stalin said firmly.

    Stukov had been unconcerned by the exchange. "Is the Mogilev facility fully operational yet?"

    "Yes, comrade. The armoured divisions have finished reorganizing into corps. Modernization and testing will begin shortly."

    "What can we expect in terms of results?" Stalin asked.

    "If the project is maintained we can assuredly expect faster, stronger, and more powerful armoured designs within the next five years, far better than any we can expect any other country to muster."

    "And will they be adequate to replace our cavalry corps?" Stukov asked.

    Zhukov smiled appreciatively for his soft-ball questions. "They will deliver results on the battlefield no cavalry corps could dream of accomplishing."

    Stalin nodded, looking convinced. "I will review your reports, but baring any unforeseen problems, I authorize the project receive full funding. The armoured corps will receive another three divisions in the next three years and plans will be made for a fourth."

    "Thank you, Comrade Stalin," both generals said at once.

    As the two left, Konev couldn't help but keep a smile from his face. The Soviet Union would have the strongest, most powerful tanks in any future war.

    "Comrade Yagoda," he heard Stukov say as he left. "We were looking over your recent performance and were very... disappointed."

    Something about the way that final word was spoken sent a shiver down Konev's spine. He had a feeling Zhukov would not be bothered by the man for much longer.

  3. #23
    Strategos ton Exkoubitores Fulcrumvale's Avatar
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    Something about the way that final word was spoken sent a shiver down Konev's spine.
    Mine too.
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  4. #24
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  5. #25
    Technically, since Stukov brings knowledge of the future...
    the question is: against whom will the USSR take pre-emptive defensive measures first?

  6. #26
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    Remember that in the alternate world of Chronological Influences I, Konev was one of the generals that started the anti-Stukov revolution in the end...
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  7. #27
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    Fulcrumvale:

    GeneralHannibal: That question is actually immensely difficult for me to answer.

    Tskb18: Because the rest of the world clearly is plotting to anihalate poor, defenseless Russia.

    anonymous4401: I do remember that, and I also believe Stukov may remember it too.

    -----------------------------------

    July 2nd, 1936

    Alexei Stukov sat in his office, idly looking on as he casually spun the globe. As he watched the world spin before his eyes in a blur, his thoughts drifted.

    In the past several months since his arrival at Stalin's doorstep, he had clawed his way up the ladder of Soviet hierarchy and recognition. While acting as Stalin's closest advisor had its advantages, without earning the respect or fear of his other advisors, ministers, and cabinet members, Stukov's survival depended on the whims of the Man of Steel.

    And that man's whims changed all too frequently.

    Research for the continued modernization of the Soviet military - and there was quite a lot to modernize, Stukov had noted - was coming along at a reasonable pace. After finally eradicating the last vestiges of dissent Stalin's ascent to supremacy in Soviet governance had created, all available resources could be channeled into modernization and upgrades.

    But there was simply too much to modernize. Stukov had accepted this fact and had convinced Stalin that the focus must be on the forces located in Europe.

    While the threat Japan posed was more imminent, the Nazi menace was, in the long run, far more important to deal with.

    "One thing at a time," he had said to Stalin. "Germany must be destroyed first. But do not worry. We will deal with Japan soon enough."

    That had been enough to convince Stalin.

    It seemed strange. Stalin was not nearly was menacing, or as threatening as he had been the last time Stukov had tried this.

    'Things aren't like they were last time,' Stukov thought.

    'I wonder if Landon will be elected President...'

    And - how could he even conceive of forgetting? - he wondered, if this would be so different, would he ever meet....

    Stukov stopped himself from carrying that thought on any further. It wouldn't make anything better.

    So, he would carry on with the task at hand: build up the largest, most modern, most powerful military force and conquer the world.

    It was just that simple.

  8. #28
    Strategos ton Exkoubitores Fulcrumvale's Avatar
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    It was just that simple.
    But it will still make for a great read!
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  9. #29
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    Great start. Stukov seems like an interesting character. I am glad to see Yagoda will be replaced.

  10. #30
    Old Person GeneralHannibal's Avatar
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    Are you thinking of doing a "pre-empive" against Finland, The Baltic States, Romania or Poland?
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  11. #31
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    Afgahnistan? maybe? They are the real enemy afterall

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    -------------------------------------





    July 31st, 1936

    Alexei Stukov watched from afar as soldiers, supplies, and material were loaded up onto transports in Sevastopol. Amid the flurry of activity accompanying the large embarkment of "advisors" and war materials, groups of civilians looked on, cheering their patriotic comrades and wishing them well in the months to come.

    About two weeks earlier, civil war had erupted in Spain when the military had failed in a coup against the legitimately elected socialist government, which had been unable to curtail the... patriotic fervor of its supporters over the weeks.

    Now, to some degree or another, every major authoritarian nation in Europe was picking sides, aiding in what ways they could their idea logical comrades.

    In hopes of effectively keeping the tide of war in favor of the Republican loyalists, the Soviet Union had, after Stukov's extensive urgings to Stalin, decreed massive aide for the Republicans. Almost all the stockpiles of war supplies were depleted.

    Stukov could tell from the mounting stacks of supplies that there were not nearly enough transports to take care of it all in one trip.

    It would be such a shame to waste all those supplies if the ships sank.

    While he had reason to not be confident in the Republican forces - mainly the Nationalist successful assault of Madrid - the recent news from Iberia had given Stukov reason to be hopeful. Early offensives had managed to relieve Barcelona by recapturing Tarragona and Saragossa, and surround Nationalist forces in the Pyrenees.

    If the Republicans did not lose their momentum, the Nationalists would be driven out of Spain in a few months.

    Stukov sighed, securing his cap more tightly to his head as it was nearly blown away by a sudden gust of wind off the sea.

    Monitoring the developments in Spain would prove a welcome distraction from the tedium of administrative work. While vitally important, these quibbling details were so aggravating. Stukov's head was filled with so many plans. But at the moment, all he could really do was wait.

    Enjoy it while it lasts, he scolded himself mentally. Some day, you'll wish you had enough time to be bored.

  13. #33
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    October 16th, 1936

    "Comrade Stalin, I hope you are not serious!" Yagoda shouted.

    Stukov smiled smugly as he reclined back into his chair at the conference table. Yagoda was throwing another of his tantrums, a side-effect of his steady decline from power.

    "I am entirely serious," Stalin said as he held a lit match over the end of his pipe.

    Stukov had seriously considered simply doing away with the man, but had stopped from eliminating Yagoda because of the simple fact there was no one better for the job.

    He may be incompetent, but at least he's experienced.

    But even experience was not serving Yagoda well. Stukov had systematically outmaneuvered him, whittling away at his influence until he could be dispensed with.

    "But," Yagoda sputtered, "18 divisions? Our resources are already strained in our modernization programs!"

    "Nonsense," Stukov interjected, his calm composure in stark contrast to Yagoda. "It has always been our intention to modernize our western armies and expand them to a suitable enough size to defend our industrial centers in the west."

    Stalin nodded slowly his agreement as he smoked thoughtfully on his pipe.

    Yagoda glared at him. They both knew that in reality he agreed completely with Stukov. He had merely been forced into that position by Stukov's maneuvers.

    It must have felt so frustrating. In all fairness, he shouldn't have any reason to be in such a weak position.

    Stukov simply didn't like the man.

    The Spanish Civil War was not going so well, though. While the Republicans had managed to secure a rather firm control over Barcelona and threaten Madrid from the north, it had come at the expense of loyalist holdings in the south. A breakout from Seville had broken the Republican lines, with Nationalist forces escaping the Seville pocket and linking up with their comrades in Madrid.

    At the moment, the country was split almost entirely in half along a north-south axis. The coming months before the winter would be critical, Stukov believed. A long, drawn out conflict would probably only benefit the Nationalists. The political unity of the Republicans was already tenuous enough.

    But a Republican victory would hardly matter if the Soviet Union did not amass a large enough army to face the growing Nazi menace in Germany.

    And, Stukov thought with a sly smile, The Soviet Union could not face Nazi Germany without him.

  14. #34
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    Didn't catch the last update, but I'm glad I saw this. Perhaps when the first bout of rearmament is done, you can attack Afghanistan or Persia. Afghanistan would be a good choice since it is small and will give you a good jumping off point the British India after you beat Germany.
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  15. #35
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    GeneralHannibal: After I defeat Germany? Methinks you're getting a bit ahead of yourself there.

    -----------------------------------------

    January 28th, 1937

    "Comrade Stalin," Alexei Stukov announced, stepping into Stalin's office in good cheer.

    "Yes, what is it?" Stalin asked with only a slight annoyance tinged to his voice.

    "I would like to introduce you to Sergej Uritskiy," Stukov replied ushering in a dimminutive man with short, black hair, not particularly impressive though neither was he pitiful looking. "I believe his services would be a most welcome change."

    Stalin allowed himself a smile and chuckled amicably as he stood from his desk to greet Uritskiy.

    "Comrade Stukov, I take it then you have finally dispensed with Comrade Yagoda's services?"

    Stukov nodded as he stepped forward with Uritskiy, standing to the side as Stalin shook his hand. "Indeed I have. Yagoda will no longer be any concern of ours. I saw to it personally he was stripped of any lingering authority."

    "A pleasure to serve the Soviet state, Comrade Stalin," Uritskiy finally said, his firsts words of the meeting, sounding particularly pleased.

    Stalin's expression turned mock serious, one Uritskiy did not immediately realize. "I should hope so, comrade. Or else your time here will be unpleasant indeed," he said gravely, though insincerely.

    Uritskiy's smile vanished, replaced by a look of worry. He glanced warrily at Stukov.

    Stalin burst into laughter, Uritskiy chuckling nervously in return.

    "Come now, you have nothing to fear, comrade," Stalin said reassuringly, embracing Uritskiy by the shoulders. "I expect Comrade Stukov holds you in high regard. That is a good thing to have these days."

    Stukov smiled and bowed slightly. "I am but a servant of the Soviet Union. And it is the business of the Soviet Union that I came here primarily."

    Stalin turned back to Uritskiy. "Allowed to take part in a meeting between us already? Comrade Stukov must think ver highly of you."

    The three of them sat down, Stalin first to do so.

    Sitting back in his chair, Stalin folded his hands together and set them on his lap. "So, how goes things in Spain?" he asked first.

    "Ah, I have good news, as always," Stukov said happily. "The Republicans have driven the last vestiges of the Nationalist dogs back to their Seville pocket. Before long, they'll be driven straight into the sea."

    "Very go. Then the fascists will have no victory to gloat over in Spain," Stalin said with satisfaction.

    "But I wanted to speak with you instead on matters of Operation Gargantua..." Stukov trailed off.

    "Yes, of course. The first wave of newly completed divisions should be finished deploying by now."

    "They are. And they await your order to be redeployed immediately. Conditions are right, and there could be very few times better to strike."

    Uritskiy finally chimed in to offer his opinion. "As my new responsibility of secuirty within the nation dictates, their will be no significant internal dissent or interference in carrying out the operation."

    Stalin nodded. "Excellent. Dispatch the 3rd and 4th Armies to the Transcaucus Military District, along with our armoured divisions as well. And have the 7th and 31st Army Corps sent for further support."

    Stukov grinned. "It would be my pleasure. By February 20th, everything should be set."

  16. #36
    Weird, there was a guy in the Star Craft Campaigns named Alexei Stukov.

  17. #37
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    Are you attacking Turkey or Persia?
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  18. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by GeneralHannibal
    Are you attacking Turkey or Persia?
    or maybe both?
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  19. #39

  20. #40
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    Zawk9: That's right.

    GeneralHannibal/lifeless: You won't have to wait long to find out.

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    -----------------------------------

    On February 13th, 1937, the Spanish Civil War finally came to its conclusion with the rapid defeat of General Francisco Franco and his Nationalist cohorts at Seville. With the last Nationalist stronghold now under the occupation of the loyalists, victory was declared. To the French and Soviets, who had been responsible for flooding the Republicans with war materials and "advisors", the investment had paid well.

    But while the Republicans celebrated their victory in Iberia, far to the east, Persia had reason for alarm. Over the past two weeks, Soviet forces had been spotted amassing along the borders. The number of military units in and around Baku and the general Transcaucus Military District had tripled. To make matters worse, Soviet ambassadors announced on the 13th the nullification of the non-aggression pact between the two nations. Despite this, there was little the small nation could do about it.

    On March 3rd, one day after the signing of the Anti-Comintern Pact between Germany, Italy, and Japan, the Soviet Union unleashed Operation Gargangtua upon the Persian state. While the Operation invovled only a fraction of the Soviets' military might, the Operation was aptly named in comparison to Persia. Thirty one divisions stormed across the undefended and un-defendable border, striking deep into the Persian frontier.

    The attack force consisted of the entire Soviet armoured corps, two field armies, and two army corps (one of which was holding a defense line along the eastern borders), and the original divisions stationed at Baku. To Alexei Stukov, mastermind behind Operation Gargantua and a rising star in the Soviet Union's hierarchy, this force was more than enough to deal with the Persians.

    Initially, Stukov's assessment proved accurate. Soviet forces were unopposed by organized military resistance for almost three weeks. A half-hearted stand was made on the 22nd outside of Rasht, but the city soon fell two days later, opening a path straight to Tehran for the bulk of the Soviet army. But progress was slow. It would take nearly a month for the armoured formations to push far enough into Persia to secure Tabriz and the northern territories.

    In fact, Persian resistance proved so lacking that Soviet motorized forces were able to march directly into the capital of Tehran unopposed on March 28th. Nowhere were Persian military forces spotted, save for a single army corps making a northeasterly assault around the 7th Army Corps' defense line, a strategy the Soviets were willing to indulge their adversaries in. Not wasting any time, Soviet high command ordered their single motorized division, the rather over-exaggerated 17th Army, to strike out of Tehran and cut through Persia to Bandar Abbas. By the 18th of April, the 17th Army had arrived, again without meeting any opposition from Persian forces.

    At this point, the Persian government, absolutely desperate for peace and finding to hope of assistance from the West, transmitted an offer of peace to Moscow, which essentially reduced the country to a city-state around Tehran, granting the Soviets the rest of its territory. The Soviets refused and publicized the offer to the Persian people, resulting in a huge tidal wave of fury toward the government.

    While the Shah's control over the nation rapidly crumbled, Soviet forces continued their hike through the countryside. On the 23rd of April, Soviet tank forces under Lt. General Konev captured Abadan and reached the waters of the Persian Gulf, and by the 5th, the entire Persian Gulf coast was seized. Final victory came at last on the 11th when Mj. General Zhukov's tank corps rolled into Esfahan, where the Persian government had relocated. By the morning of the 12th, Zhukov had forced the Shah to capitulate and the country was quickly annexed into the Soviet Union.

    Operation Gargantua had been an astounding success far beyond even Stukov's greatest hopes. The Persians had collapsed with barely a shot fired at only a few thousand casualties in total in just two months of campaign. The international backlash was very real and very problematic, but to a new, belligerent Soviet Union, this could only mean good things.



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