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Thread: Eine Geschichte des Grossdeutsches Reich - Germany/Road to Doom's Day

  1. #341
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    I love what you did with this!

    I also love LBJ! The fact that he really was a devious SOB must make your job as a writer much easier.

    Also, thank you for sparing Connecticut. I'm from there, so I appreciate you sparing the place.
    Last edited by Nathan Madien; 31-07-2012 at 04:41.
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  2. #342
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  3. #343
    8. Unternehmen Serpent - Concept of Operation

    At midsummer of 1965, the Reich's American invasion force was trapped by the Appalachian Mountains. While the American coastal plan was in German hands, these mountains balked their attempts to reach the industrial heartland on the shores of the Great Lakes, or the vast grain fields of the Great Plains, or the all-important petroleum reserves of Texas. Some of these advantages could be denied to the Americans by the Luftwaffe, but Rudel's pilots could not be everywhere at once, and when local commanders were constantly demanding close support, strategic bombing suffered. Therefore, a five-pronged strategly evolved, more or less of necessity.

    Some of this strategy was the natural outgrowth of conditions on the ground. The centrally directed campaign that Ramcke had attempted had failed because of the distances involved, and the simple impossibility of units in Virginia supporting units in South Carolina. Autonomous operations had therefore governed much of the initial landing, and the commanders who had survived or thrived in that environment did not care to give up that autonomy. This produced a "war of personalities," where each army became somewhat a faction under its commander in addition to a fighting unit. Ramcke's replacement would be less the commander of an army than the conductor of an orchestra, keeping all of the instruments functioning with minimal internal conflict. The Reichsführer's reorganization in June had also made this quite clear, creating four separate American armies with fairly loose links to each other.

    Some of it was driven by geography. With the barrier of the Appalachians before them, the Reichswehr consciously adopted what came to be called a "trickle approach," with the goal of breaching the American defenses in the mountains wherever the breach happened, rather than focusing on massive spearheads. In the central front, this was restricted to a handful of points; in New England, it became a broad, constant push; in the south, a situation evolved between Abrams and Steiner that mirrored the Great War "race to the sea."

    The remainder of the strategy was consciously developed in Richmond, which had become the headquarters for the Reichswehr in America. The Luftwaffe chief in the Americas, Generaloberst Steinhoff, recognized the problems created by indiscriminate dispersal of tactical air assets, and ordered the withholding of tactical air support from routine operations, while at the same time escalating the strategic bombing of Detroit and the American heartland. It became routine for bomber pilots to fly three missions a day, bombing the American industrial base around the clock. This produced terriffic wear on the pilots, and Steinhoff had to ensure sufficient replacements for them. Instead, Steinhoff told the regional army commanders that he would only authorize tactical air support "at the decisive point," and it was up to them to determine where that point was rather than frittering away the Reich's air superiority. He would leave multi-role squadrons airborne where they could either fight the few American aircraft, or intervene in support of units in the field, but the spring months, when Galland said it seemed that every commander had hot and cold running bombers on tap, were over.

    Steinhoff also had one more card up his sleeve: the airborne divisions, even the SS-Fallschirmdivisionen. Since he controlled the transport aircraft, he controlled their deployment, and he began to ask the army commanders where they would do the most good. In addition to the helicopter-borne 22. Luftlandungsdivision, he had twelve parachute divisions to commit - three full-strength corps, plus a reserve - so when the time came, he could be liberal with their deployment. The first commander to reply with a possible plan was Guderian, who had spent the previous months studying both the land to his front, and American history, and knew that there was one certain way to breach the Appalachians and get into the rolling, forested lands behind: the Cumberland Gap.

    Guderian proposed a very ambitious operation to seize this strategic pass. First, the Luftwaffe would perform a large-scale version of an old-fashioned artillery box barrage, cutting access to the north end of the pass, then the airborne troops would land at the northwest end of the pass, and finally, the grenadiers would fight their way up the pass to their relief. It was ambitious because the ground was difficult, making airborne operations very risky, but it promised the best route into the bluegrass country beyond the Gap, and the road from the Gap to the Ohio River had been in use for almost two hundred years. It also had the advantage that there was already a major highway running through the Gap, providing a supply route once the breach had been established. Steinhoff was intrigued, and forwarded the plan to Rudel, whom one aide claimed ordered them to "bathe Kentucky in fire."

    The Cumberland Gap would provide one hole in the Appalachian wall; one hole could be easily sealed, and Guderian and Kleist were already friendly rivals. Kleist had finally gotten tired of waiting for his mountaineers and organized an ad-hoc division which Heydrich had eventually blessed as Gebirgsdivision Grossdeutschland, which had finally been reinforced by three more of the alpine divisions in June. He did not appeal to Steinhoff for close air support, but instead for a deliberate effort to isolate Pittsburgh, in western Pennsylvania, and thereby to cut the most direct route for reinforcements not only of himself, but of the Waffen-SS forces in New England. Rather than the spearhead concept which Guderian had proposed, Kleist adopted the "trickle" approach across his whole front, moving forward wherever he could, and had achieved remarkable success thus far by doing so. Until he reached open ground and could fight his divisions as he felt they were meant to fight, he proposed to continue doing exactly as he had done thus far.

    New England, the third leg of this five-legged table, was potentially the most dramatic, because President Kennedy had retreated to Boston, and had called for "Fortress Boston" to resist to the bitter end. He faced the combined weight of SS-Panzerarmee "Das Reich" and SS-Panzerarmee "Hohenstaufen," both highly professional formations whose leadership were among the best in the Reichswehr, either army or SS, as Bittrich had shown at New York. Bittrich had spent the early summer rolling up the states of Connecticut - spared by the actions of Prescott Bush - and Rhode Island, and was eyeing the coastal hook of Massachussetts Bay. Massachussetts was divided roughly into two halves, a heavily populated coastal plain, and a more sparsely populated upland region of rolling hills and farmland. When asked whether the SS mountain divisions would be needed in the area, Bittrich had been positively baffled at the thought, and ordered that they be held in reserve. The terrain of this portion of New England simply did not justify deploying specialized formations; they might, he suggested, be needed for the critical battle for Quebec, and thus, should be held back for now. Thus, three divisions of SS mountain troops spent the summer of 1965 in routine police duties.

    Bittrich assumed command of this northern wing by virtue of his recent successes, and arrayed Das Reich to the west, with the goal of flanking Boston and eventually isolating the city. He hoped for a repeat of his New York operation, with more troops and a goal for the outer ring of his encirclement once it was complete: the reduction of New England and the invasion of Quebec. Because of his own feud with Rudel, Bittrich received even less than the designated on-station close air support: Luftwaffe units over SS territory in New England were ordered to engage ground targets only if fired upon. Steinhoff personally found this tremendously awkward, but Bittrich cheerfully told him that he had managed thus far without air superiority; if Steinhoff could just guarantee parity, he would ask no more of him. Since the US Army Air Corps had been broken completely by now, this was almost carte blanche to transfer air assets elsewhere.

    "Elsewhere," in this case, meant Steiner in the south. The ambitious, hard-driving young Steiner of the 1940s had given way to a deeply ill man whose staff, loyal to a fault, had concealed his ill health both from his soldiers and his superiors, and to all the world, Felix Steiner was as hard-charging an officer as he had ever been. The Appalachians at Steiner's end of the line were not nearly as formidable a barrier as they were a very short distance to the north, in Guderian's territory, and indeed could be bypassed if one was comfortable with a long exposed flank, by the simple measure of a drive along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Steiner was an unorthodox officer, but not so unorthodox that he was comfortable with such exposure. His proposal for how to use the airborne forces shows just how unorthodox he was, however, since he did not brief Steinhoff on his complete plan - Steinhoff would doubtless have refused, had he done so.

    What Steinhoff heard, and agreed to, was a deployment of airborne troops to secure the Chickamauga-Chattanooga valley, flanked by Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge. This was potentially as difficult an operation as Cumberland Gap; both prominences were steep, treacherous, and heavily wooded, ideal defensive terrain where Creighton Abrams had dug in for the past month. Steiner was to launch an armored offensive from the Johns Mountain area at the same time, committing his full force thus to a direct battle against Abrams. The tipping point that was supposed to transform this from another Atlanta was the Luftwaffe. Steiner had the skies; Abrams did not, and would be pinned in place while the Reich destroyed him.

    What Steiner actually planned with his staff was radically different, one of the most risky operations in the history of a risky war. He detached one battered armored corps, the marines, and the mountaineers that had been sent to relieve the marines to support the landings at Chickamauga-Chattanooga, and threw the remainder of his armored force at Columbus, Georgia, and beyond it, Montgomery. He launched two simultaneous offensives at perpendicular angles to each other. It was apparently madness, because it left a joint between the two forces, but Steiner was gambling now. There was nothing to suggest that the United States had a coherent force in position to exploit this gap.

    These were four components of what became known as "Serpent;" the fifth was a touch added by the hand of Otto Skorzeny himself. The main objection to bypassing the Appalachians by landing on the amphibious-friendly beaches of the Gulf Coast was that the Caribbean was an American lake, save for Jamaica. Skorzeny had already shown that Jamaica was an adequate springboard, as shall be shown in discussion of Unternehmen Nebenattraktion in Panama. He therefore proposed an invasion of the island of Cuba, sufficient at least to secure its southern tip with the American naval base at Guantanamo, and the addition of yet another front to the American war. It is still unclear whether Skorzeny planned on expanding operations to include landings at Gulfport and Galveston, or if it was initially a matter of applying pressure.

    All of these plans, with the exception of Steiner's sleight-of-hand, were collated in Richmond and Berlin, and the United States braced for the worst.
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  4. #344
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    The worst...like things aren't bad enough as it is.
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  5. #345
    Basileus Romaion Nikolai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan Madien View Post
    The worst...like things aren't bad enough as it is.
    The Americans need a miracle now.
    Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. -Isa 41:10

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  6. #346
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolai View Post
    The Americans need a miracle now.
    What the country needs is...

    Dick Nixon! If anyone is good at getting kicked around, it's him!
    "In America, anybody can be President. That's one of the risks you take."
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  7. #347
    Karl Popper Fanboy H.Appleby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan Madien View Post
    What the country needs is...

    Dick Nixon! If anyone is good at getting kicked around, it's him!
    Or Barry Goldwater...
    Obessively following Nathan Madien's excellent AAR: The Presidents: Vietnam War Edition and check out my own AAR: The American Experience 1912-1964

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  8. #348
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by H.Appleby View Post
    Or Barry Goldwater...
    I think the country is too doomed for Goldwater. What I meant by Nixon is that since the Germans are going to win anyways, America should kick Nixon around for stress relief.
    Last edited by Nathan Madien; 19-09-2012 at 05:01.
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  9. #349
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    I really like where this AAR is going. Very in depth insights to the conflict.

  10. #350
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    Your friendly grammar nazi says:

    Eine Geschichte des Grossdeutschen Reiches

    Earth Invasion : Los Angeles

    The Alien Invasion is here. Los Angeles is lost, unless a few good Paradoxians (and a bunch of Marines) throw them back in the ocean. Rules. Data. Map.

  11. #351
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    Quote Originally Posted by OnFire View Post
    I really like where this AAR is going. Very in depth insights to the conflict.
    Same, I'm looking forward to an update.

  12. #352
    9. Sideshow

    The seizure of the Panama Canal had been one of the foundational elements of the German war plan in North America; without the Canal, the United States Pacific Fleet could not easily move to interdict the Atlantic. The planners in Wilhelmshaven, especially Dönitz, had argued that this was superfluous, because the United States Navy was no match for the Reichsmarine. Events vindicated this perspective, but eventually the naval planners were persuaded that the American fleet could not ignore the loss of the Canal, and would be drawn into a killing zone around its western end by any attempt to seize it. If land options failed to secure the Canal for German use, it could simply be demolished and made impassable; therefore, there was no true risk involved in any attempt to seize it, and potentially tremendous gains.

    On January 6, just after word arrived in Berlin that the American fleet had failed in its intercept off Bermuda, the KdF-Ship Wilhelm Gustloff departed Wilhelmshaven. The Wilhelm Gustloff was the third ship to bear that name, and was one of the most modern pleasure vessels afloat. The peculiar political atmosphere of the time made a cruise ship of such size a reasonable way for tourists from the Reich to see the Caribbean and South America, with occasional ports of call in the American South; thus, the scheduled departure and transit of a Panamax-sized cruise ship aroused little suspicion in and of itself. According to its manifest the ship carried the Zeiss firm's managerial staff on a leadership retreat. It actually carried a specially trained assault force, mostly concealed belowdecks as a precaution against any suspicion by the Americans. It passed south of Jamaica on 17 January 1965, and Skorzeny transmitted the command signal: Nebenattraktion.

    While the first German soldiers were landing at Virginia Beach, the ship was in Gatun Lake, in the middle of the Canal. As soon as the first news reports arrived of fighting in the United States, the assault force sent its boats over the side and seized the Gatun Locks, effectively blocking all trans-Canal traffic, and began to fan out. By the time Guderian reported Virginia Beach secure, Generalmajor Alfred von Wurzian had set up his command post in Colon, on the Atlantic side, and Jägergruppe Panama was in full operation. Wurzian had six battalions of light infantry, four of engineers, a mountain artillery battalion, and, his only mechanized asset, a Flakpanzer battalion. All in all, they were a division-sized force, trained extensively in the Congo and Jamaica itself. Many were South American veterans, and all of them were better-trained and better-led than the American forces in the Panama Canal Zone.

    The occupation of the Canal Zone itself took two weeks, mostly scouring the last units of the American garrison from the difficult terrain surrounding the Canal rather than fighting for control of the Canal; that was confirmed with a transmission from Colon to Jamaica on 2 February. Neutral traffic in the Canal was held in Gatun Lake until the fighting was over, then shipped out as quickly as possible. The Canal became a route for shuttling U-Boats into the Pacific. The first of them submerged on the Pacific side late on the fourth, after a twenty-eight-hour transit. It arrived in the nick of time: American carrier aircraft had been sighted by the radar station at Panama City the previous night. The Battle of the Gulf of Panama began immediately.

    The sea fight's outcome was practically a foregone conclusion. The Reich's ability to shuffle U-Boats into the conflict zone, combined with desultory air cover from both South America and Jamaica, meant that the United States Pacific Fleet walked into a killing zone as surely as the Atlantic Fleet had, albeit with more purpose, for the Canal was vital to the Americans. The Americans launched strikes first to dislodge Wurzian, then to destroy the locks; their low-altitude aircraft were picked off either by Wurzian's men, firing shoulder-launched anti-aircraft missiles to disrupt them, or fleet air assets overhead, and their high-altitude strikes were too imprecise to demolish the locks. By the end of the fight, the last American aircraft carriers were limping for San Francisco, leaving behind eight of their number and forty-two surface combatants of varying size, from the battleship Missouri to the destroyer Eversole. The Gulf of Panama was secure, and the U-Boats began operating along the west coast of the Americas.

    The land fight for Panama was much more troublesome. Wurzian's forces had to entrench on both sides of the Canal, with no room for maneuver. Skorzeny had foreseen this, and Wurzian's task force included a brigade of engineers who spent most of early February blasting into the rock to create a hedgehog against the expected Central American and Colombian assaults through the jungle. Roads both north and south from the Isthmus were cut, and JG 54 rushed to Panama to establish air superiority on the newly-reopened airfields. Wurzian's troops were not long in waiting. The first assaults came from the south, sporadic and uncoordinated through the jungle. They beat them back easily enough, but the price of defeating each assault was time spent on the firing line. Among Wurzian's men, "rest" became twelve hours in Panama or Colon; he did not have enough to set up proper rotations away from the trench network, ever expanding and burrowing down into the bedrock.

    Panama and Colon, as seaports and garrison towns, had both seen their share of crime before the invasion. Prostitution was rampant, and violent crime, which had been kept in check by American military police, began to swing out of control in both cities, since Wurzian had more pressing concerns. The only time that military police did their usual duties was when crime threatened the operation of the Canal or the air and sea ports, and then the reactions were swift and summary. Only by the application of constant, brutal force did they manage to clamp down on the gang problem. Colon and Panama became, in effect, additional fronts in an already dangerous, complex area. It was a relatively simple matter to burn and spray back the jungles and foliage; by the end of March, there was a mile-wide stretch of jungle from coast to coast which had been stripped of all foliage by the Luftwaffe on both sides of the Isthmus. It was another entirely to order every law-abiding citizen out of a block of Colon and order in a flamethrower platoon to clear out what remained. Both the urban and jungle fronts took a terrible psychological toll on Wurzian's isolated division.

    The toll that resupply operations to Panama took on the Reich's merchant shipping was physically minuscule, but psychologically devastating. Every cargo run into Colon promised danger without reward. Shore establishments were closed to any liberty thanks to the radical solutions imposed by Wurzian's police, Colombian and Costa Rican coastal guns harassed them day and night, and Wurzian himself put a premium on turnaround for the ships. Panama quickly became "that damned Canal," both among the soldiers on the ground and the sailors who kept them resupplied. Despite the psychological costs, German morale remained high enough to stay in constant combat for four months without significant reinforcements against roughly four times their weight between north and south. They were aided in this by the terrain, by disorganization among their opponents, and by a lack of offensive spirit in the Colombian military, which was used to contending with minor domestic rebels rather than a force like Wurzian's.

    By May, the battle for the Canal was over. Reinforcements had been sent from the African garrisons - though not from Manstein's prized formations, which were now assembling in Jamaica. Wurzian was called to Richmond during Heydrich's visit, promoted to Generalleutnant with operational command of the nascent Cuban invasion, and given perhaps a unique honor for a Reichswehr general in the American campaign. An avid diver and one of the foremost spokesmen for the Reich's special warfare capabilities alongside Skorzeny himself, he was told that the Führerinstitut für Biologie had certified his reporting of a previously unknown species of sea turtle, henceforth named Chelonia Wurziani.
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  13. #353
    Working von Wurzian in is certainly a nice touch!
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  14. #354
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    A very appropriate chapter title you have there. Good job.
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  15. #355
    I've been lazy about replying to the comments, so...

    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan Madien View Post
    The worst...like things aren't bad enough as it is.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolai View Post
    The Americans need a miracle now.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan Madien View Post
    What the country needs is...

    Dick Nixon! If anyone is good at getting kicked around, it's him!
    Quote Originally Posted by H.Appleby View Post
    Or Barry Goldwater...
    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan Madien View Post
    I think the country is too doomed for Goldwater. What I meant by Nixon is that since the Germans are going to win anyways, America should kick Nixon around for stress relief.
    Actually, I've been looking for postwar leadership for the western fragments of the US. Nixon as President of California isn't a bad idea, other than his credentials TTL are almost certainly as solidly anti-German as they were anti-Communist OTL. Of course, a pious Quaker boy who can talk himself into thinking Watergate wasn't illegal because the President did it (taking sovereign immunity to a whole new level...) is quite capable of talking himself into thinking that only he can save his people from the German boot. I've done something similar with Prescott Bush, who is more obviously holding his nose about the whole affair, so there's certainly a place for a very ambitious Californian conservative.

    Goldwater is a more difficult proposition, since Arizona is going to Deseret, and there's not going to be much room for non-Mormons in Deseret. Of all the American successor states, I intend Deseret to be the least friendly to outsiders. Goldwater strikes me as less likely to bend in the wind or talk himself into something than Nixon. More likely, Deseret will put out a call to reverse the Mormon diaspora of the '20s and '30s, and one of those that will answer the call is a successful Michigan businessman and politician. The Romney family will likely be the head of the "moderates" of Deseret; I hesitate to speculate on the "radicals." Goldwater will most likely either Edmund Ruffin himself out, or wind up as a token non-Mormon secretary of defense, interior, or education.

    Quote Originally Posted by OnFire View Post
    I really like where this AAR is going. Very in depth insights to the conflict.
    Actually, I always feel like I don't get enough time or space to go into sufficient depth. Large portions of this would deserve individual books per engagement - Steiner in Georgia, for instance, or the Virginia campaign of 1965. Panama is another case where I've hand-waved a lot of it, though in that case it's because I'm not familiar enough with Panamanian geography to say more than it's rugged and jungle-covered.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stuckenschmidt View Post
    Your friendly grammar nazi says:

    Eine Geschichte des Grossdeutschen Reiches

    Couple years too late for that one.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Gonzo View Post
    Same, I'm looking forward to an update.
    ... And there you go! A man, a plan, a canal...

    Quote Originally Posted by TheHyphenated1 View Post
    Working von Wurzian in is certainly a nice touch!
    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan Madien View Post
    A very appropriate chapter title you have there. Good job.
    There are only so many real German generals I can pull out of my hat; von Wurzian did hold a commission, and I've already kept the OTL head of GSG-9 as a police reservist with some radical ideas (see DC), so I thought he would be a suitable commander for something like Panama.

    And yes, Nathan, Panama was a sideshow; the actual name was inspired by Guadalcanal, which was a peripheral battle that escalated into something more. In the case of Panama, it's a life-changing event for the men who were there, but not so important to the overall conduct of the war.
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  16. #356
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    ^I meant that as a compliment. I hope it didn't come across as sarcastic.

    Quote Originally Posted by c0d5579 View Post
    Actually, I've been looking for postwar leadership for the western fragments of the US. Nixon as President of California isn't a bad idea, other than his credentials TTL are almost certainly as solidly anti-German as they were anti-Communist OTL. Of course, a pious Quaker boy who can talk himself into thinking Watergate wasn't illegal because the President did it (taking sovereign immunity to a whole new level...) is quite capable of talking himself into thinking that only he can save his people from the German boot. I've done something similar with Prescott Bush, who is more obviously holding his nose about the whole affair, so there's certainly a place for a very ambitious Californian conservative.
    Although I'm sure there are other Californians out there who would argue that Nixon isn't the one.

    Quote Originally Posted by c0d5579 View Post
    Goldwater is a more difficult proposition, since Arizona is going to Deseret, and there's not going to be much room for non-Mormons in Deseret. Of all the American successor states, I intend Deseret to be the least friendly to outsiders. Goldwater strikes me as less likely to bend in the wind or talk himself into something than Nixon. More likely, Deseret will put out a call to reverse the Mormon diaspora of the '20s and '30s, and one of those that will answer the call is a successful Michigan businessman and politician. The Romney family will likely be the head of the "moderates" of Deseret; I hesitate to speculate on the "radicals." Goldwater will most likely either Edmund Ruffin himself out, or wind up as a token non-Mormon secretary of defense, interior, or education.
    I don't see Goldwater going down quietly. He isn't someone who will roll over and play dead. If people want to get rid of him, I think he'll go down fighting.

    By the way, what are you going to do about the Pacific Northwest and a certain Washington Senator?
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  17. #357
    Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and possibly Idaho become Cascadia. Which Washington senator are you thinking of? My wife would probably know instantly, but there's a running joke in our family any time Washington history comes up about how I'm from Texas and the Universe was created in 1836.

    EDIT - I don't know, I have this great idea for Richard Nixon as President for Life, until he does something ridiculous and gets politely removed by coup to become the ambassador to the Kingdom of Hawaii, to be replaced by someone else, someone more actor-y.

    And as long as I'm making actors the head of state in various post-American states, John Wayne had property in to-be Cascadia, and I'm short on knowledge of Pacific Northwest radical conservatives. He said plenty of things that would make him acceptable to Heydrich, but he was also a huge believer in American exceptionalism and had a habit of shooting from the hip.
    Last edited by c0d5579; 26-10-2012 at 15:37.
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  18. #358
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    c0d5579: The name of the Senator I'm thinking of escapes me for the moment. Let me see if I can "scoop" it back in.

    Nixon doing something ridiculous? How about seeing him try to humanize himself. Oh, wait. That's Nixon doing something awkward.

    I seem to remember an alternate history story (I forget which one) in which John Wayne was a Vice Presidential candidate.
    "In America, anybody can be President. That's one of the risks you take."
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    The Presidents: The Vietnam War Edition
    President of the United States in 1962: Henry M. Jackson (Democrat-Washington)

  19. #359
    10. Operation Serpent: The Northern Front

    Hauptgruppenführer Bittrich made a point of advertising that the Hohenstaufen offensive was directed at Boston. Under flag of truce, he delivered an ultimatum to President Kennedy: New England was untenable at this point and Boston could be encircled with one strong thrust; the Kriegsmarine, anxious to remain relevant in this front, had provided him extraordinary assets for naval bombardment, and reinforcements were concentrating in upstate New York for the New England offensive. Heydrich, as ever keen to the propaganda value of an operation, had granted Bittrich the first Treaty troops to land on the continent, three Highland divisions from Scotland and the English Foot Guards Division. The British forces were not as committed as Bittrich's own men to the operation - the unofficial Hohenstaufen motto had become "In at the death!" - and they had severe reservations about fighting men that in many cases they regarded as their cousins. Despite that, Heydrich's orders were explicit: They were to march across Boston Common and establish their headquarters in Faneuil Hall. That the streets of Boston would have to be cleared by German hands was less important to the Reichsführer than that the Americans understand that they were beaten.

    Unsurprisingly, Kennedy rejected Bittrich's terms absolutely. "As long as Boston stands," he proclaimed, "it stands as an example to America, and to freedom-loving men everywhere." This was Kennedy's last speech to reach the western portion of the divided states of America, and was delivered at the same time that Panzergrenadier Das Reich rushed to grab the arsenal complex at Springfield. This was how the end of Boston began: the stronger, fresher troops of Das Reich thrust to Springfield and northeast, racing up the glacial valleys and bounding eastward across the ridges for two weeks, while Hohenstaufen fought what was essentially a diversion that isolated and reduced the hook of Cape Cod. On 18 August 1965, Wilhelm Bittrich planted his foot on the American monument of Plymouth Rock. Again, he sent a messenger to Kennedy, and again, Kennedy refused. Bittrich therefore cut the aqueducts from the west of the city and halted Hohenstaufen's advance on the city's outskirts. To the north, Das Reich shifted its axis to race along Massachussetts Route 2, batting aside the American 26th Infantry Division, a militia formation that included the oldest units in the United States Army. When they broke at Leominster, the division brought with it the retired General Walter Krueger, who had been born in the Wilhelmine Reich, and died in captivity in Heydrich's Reich in 1966. Krueger, a deeply unhappy man, had seen the United States at its apogee, risen to be one of its highest-ranking soldiers before retirement, and had seen his family disintegrate in the previous twenty years. To end his years in German captivity was therefore more than he could bear.

    Bittrich's artillery now had Boston under fire from south and west, and the Reichsmarine had drawn a line from Gloucester to Cape Cod through which nothing was allowed to pass. The city was without electricity or water, running low on food, and its defenders dwindling in number. Kennedy rushed students from Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology into brigades where only every third student had a rifle, and Bittrich was content to allow the front to grind forward at its own pace. His own troops suffered negligible losses, and Boston starved. By the start of September, Hohenstaufen troops were in Quincy, on the southern outskirts of Boston, and had taken Lowell to the north, cutting the city off from the remainder of New England. The front shifted once more, with Hohenstaufen tasked with containing the Boston perimeter until the city collapsed, and Das Reich turning northward once more to fight its way into the only significant city in New Hampshire, Manchester.

    Fall in New England was traditionally a tourist season, with visitors from Boston traveling throughout most of the region in one last hurrah before the winter. This exodus was widely hated, but it would be fair to say that the Americans would have preferred the Boston tourists to Das Reich. Hausser's favorite part of the SS broke into Manchester seventy-two hours after the northward turn. They had rotated their front through no fewer than three ninety-degree evolutions in three weeks, and now advanced on a relatively broad front across the increasingly rugged ground of upstate New Hampshire and Vermont. On the twelfth of September, they entered Portland, Maine, and faced the last American line of any significance, in an arc anchored at Mount Washington and following the course of the White Mountains. It was poorly defended; no American units above battalion size maintained any cohesion, ammunition was scarce, and the main impetus for breaching the mountains was that October was the first month where winter conditions could potentially stop operations in their tracks.

    The White Mountain offensive began at midnight on 14 September 1965 with infantry attacks on Moultonborough, in central New Hampshire, and Paris, Maine. The goal was to open the two major roads into the mountains and create a pocket in the White Mountains, hopefully turning the flanks of the strongest positions at Mount Washington and Mount Lafayette. These positions were rendered almost impregnable by nature - Mount Washington recording six centimeters of snowfall even at the tail of summer - and, as with Boston, starving the defenders seemed a better course than a direct assault. The Maine offensive had generally easier ground over which to advance, and by day's end, the grenadiers had re-mounted and taken Bethel. In New Hampshire, they cleared the shore of Squam Lake in roughly the same period, but the fighting was far less congenial to mounted troops, and the Das Reich troopers fought on foot. It was therefore much more wearing on men and equipment, and the Das Reich timetable was upset.

    The mountainous terrain, and not the thin American line, proved to be Das Reich's undoing in this operation. Bittrich wished to reach the Montreal plateau before the onset of severe winter conditions, and since operations at Boston were more or less running on their own, he dispatched his mountaineer reserve northward. SS-Nord began full operations on the eighteenth, going directly from railhead to combat thanks to extensive preparations en route. They disregarded the original two-pronged plan for a simple overmountain offensive aimed at Mount Washington itself, and in the predawn hours of the twenty-fourth, the Mount Washington weather station began reporting in German. Das Reich pulled back into the area between Portland and Augusta and consolidated for future operations.

    As SS-Nord began fighting its way into Canada, Hohenstaufen continued to tighten its grip on Boston. By 1 October, the city had been isolated for three months and food supplies were exhausted. Contemporary American sources indicate the privations the city faced - a "Boston terrier" had ceased to be a breed of dog and become a euphemism for a roast of uncertain provenance. In many quarters of the city, the residents were reduced to eating glue from wallpaper. The horror of the starvation of Boston is made worse by the fact that Bittrich had provisions available, should Kennedy merely surrender the city.

    At 9:45 AM Eastern Standard Time, 13 October 1965, loudspeakers across Boston began to play the "Death March." Shortly thereafter, it was announced that President Kennedy had taken his own life, and the United States government entered a period of collapse and anarchy. Vice-President Johnson was nominally a prisoner, but was widely known to be collaborating with the Reich. There was no legislature of which to speak, and thus no clear chain of succession. The United States became a disparate collection of army groups fighting to preserve what order they could. Meanwhile, Bittrich rushed supplies in to relieve the city of Boston, only to be halted by orders from Berlin just as distribution started. Heydrich delayed all relief to the city until a mixed force of Scottish and English soldiers could be paraded across Boston Common, led by the 1st Battalion of the Worcester Regiment, which had stood as part of Boston's garrison in the 1760s and 1770s. It was a delay of only three days, but once more Bittrich protested, and once more he was overruled. He was told in no uncertain terms that he served now on sufferance - no more sentimentality would be tolerated, and the Americans must be shown that they were conquered.

    This was the climate in which Prescott Bush arrived in Boston to begin establishing a government for the State of New England.
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  20. #360
    Second Lieutenant anakin1390's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by c0d5579 View Post
    10. Operation Serpent: The Northern Front

    Hauptgruppenführer Bittrich made a point of advertising that the Hohenstaufen offensive was directed at Boston. Under flag of truce, he delivered an ultimatum to President Kennedy: New England was untenable at this point and Boston could be encircled with one strong thrust; the Kriegsmarine, anxious to remain relevant in this front, had provided him extraordinary assets for naval bombardment, and reinforcements were concentrating in upstate New York for the New England offensive. Heydrich, as ever keen to the propaganda value of an operation, had granted Bittrich the first Treaty troops to land on the continent, three Highland divisions from Scotland and the English Foot Guards Division. The British forces were not as committed as Bittrich's own men to the operation - the unofficial Hohenstaufen motto had become "In at the death!" - and they had severe reservations about fighting men that in many cases they regarded as their cousins. Despite that, Heydrich's orders were explicit: They were to march across Boston Common and establish their headquarters in Faneuil Hall. That the streets of Boston would have to be cleared by German hands was less important to the Reichsführer than that the Americans understand that they were beaten.

    Unsurprisingly, Kennedy rejected Bittrich's terms absolutely. "As long as Boston stands," he proclaimed, "it stands as an example to America, and to freedom-loving men everywhere." This was Kennedy's last speech to reach the western portion of the divided states of America, and was delivered at the same time that Panzergrenadier Das Reich rushed to grab the arsenal complex at Springfield. This was how the end of Boston began: the stronger, fresher troops of Das Reich thrust to Springfield and northeast, racing up the glacial valleys and bounding eastward across the ridges for two weeks, while Hohenstaufen fought what was essentially a diversion that isolated and reduced the hook of Cape Cod. On 18 August 1965, Wilhelm Bittrich planted his foot on the American monument of Plymouth Rock. Again, he sent a messenger to Kennedy, and again, Kennedy refused. Bittrich therefore cut the aqueducts from the west of the city and halted Hohenstaufen's advance on the city's outskirts. To the north, Das Reich shifted its axis to race along Massachussetts Route 2, batting aside the American 26th Infantry Division, a militia formation that included the oldest units in the United States Army. When they broke at Leominster, the division brought with it the retired General Walter Krueger, who had been born in the Wilhelmine Reich, and died in captivity in Heydrich's Reich in 1966. Krueger, a deeply unhappy man, had seen the United States at its apogee, risen to be one of its highest-ranking soldiers before retirement, and had seen his family disintegrate in the previous twenty years. To end his years in German captivity was therefore more than he could bear.

    Bittrich's artillery now had Boston under fire from south and west, and the Reichsmarine had drawn a line from Gloucester to Cape Cod through which nothing was allowed to pass. The city was without electricity or water, running low on food, and its defenders dwindling in number. Kennedy rushed students from Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology into brigades where only every third student had a rifle, and Bittrich was content to allow the front to grind forward at its own pace. His own troops suffered negligible losses, and Boston starved. By the start of September, Hohenstaufen troops were in Quincy, on the southern outskirts of Boston, and had taken Lowell to the north, cutting the city off from the remainder of New England. The front shifted once more, with Hohenstaufen tasked with containing the Boston perimeter until the city collapsed, and Das Reich turning northward once more to fight its way into the only significant city in New Hampshire, Manchester.

    Fall in New England was traditionally a tourist season, with visitors from Boston traveling throughout most of the region in one last hurrah before the winter. This exodus was widely hated, but it would be fair to say that the Americans would have preferred the Boston tourists to Das Reich. Hausser's favorite part of the SS broke into Manchester seventy-two hours after the northward turn. They had rotated their front through no fewer than three ninety-degree evolutions in three weeks, and now advanced on a relatively broad front across the increasingly rugged ground of upstate New Hampshire and Vermont. On the twelfth of September, they entered Portland, Maine, and faced the last American line of any significance, in an arc anchored at Mount Washington and following the course of the White Mountains. It was poorly defended; no American units above battalion size maintained any cohesion, ammunition was scarce, and the main impetus for breaching the mountains was that October was the first month where winter conditions could potentially stop operations in their tracks.

    The White Mountain offensive began at midnight on 14 September 1965 with infantry attacks on Moultonborough, in central New Hampshire, and Paris, Maine. The goal was to open the two major roads into the mountains and create a pocket in the White Mountains, hopefully turning the flanks of the strongest positions at Mount Washington and Mount Lafayette. These positions were rendered almost impregnable by nature - Mount Washington recording six centimeters of snowfall even at the tail of summer - and, as with Boston, starving the defenders seemed a better course than a direct assault. The Maine offensive had generally easier ground over which to advance, and by day's end, the grenadiers had re-mounted and taken Bethel. In New Hampshire, they cleared the shore of Squam Lake in roughly the same period, but the fighting was far less congenial to mounted troops, and the Das Reich troopers fought on foot. It was therefore much more wearing on men and equipment, and the Das Reich timetable was upset.

    The mountainous terrain, and not the thin American line, proved to be Das Reich's undoing in this operation. Bittrich wished to reach the Montreal plateau before the onset of severe winter conditions, and since operations at Boston were more or less running on their own, he dispatched his mountaineer reserve northward. SS-Nord began full operations on the eighteenth, going directly from railhead to combat thanks to extensive preparations en route. They disregarded the original two-pronged plan for a simple overmountain offensive aimed at Mount Washington itself, and in the predawn hours of the twenty-fourth, the Mount Washington weather station began reporting in German. Das Reich pulled back into the area between Portland and Augusta and consolidated for future operations.

    As SS-Nord began fighting its way into Canada, Hohenstaufen continued to tighten its grip on Boston. By 1 October, the city had been isolated for three months and food supplies were exhausted. Contemporary American sources indicate the privations the city faced - a "Boston terrier" had ceased to be a breed of dog and become a euphemism for a roast of uncertain provenance. In many quarters of the city, the residents were reduced to eating glue from wallpaper. The horror of the starvation of Boston is made worse by the fact that Bittrich had provisions available, should Kennedy merely surrender the city.

    At 9:45 AM Eastern Standard Time, 13 October 1965, loudspeakers across Boston began to play the "Death March." Shortly thereafter, it was announced that President Kennedy had taken his own life, and the United States government entered a period of collapse and anarchy. Vice-President Johnson was nominally a prisoner, but was widely known to be collaborating with the Reich. There was no legislature of which to speak, and thus no clear chain of succession. The United States became a disparate collection of army groups fighting to preserve what order they could. Meanwhile, Bittrich rushed supplies in to relieve the city of Boston, only to be halted by orders from Berlin just as distribution started. Heydrich delayed all relief to the city until a mixed force of Scottish and English soldiers could be paraded across Boston Common, led by the 1st Battalion of the Worcester Regiment, which had stood as part of Boston's garrison in the 1760s and 1770s. It was a delay of only three days, but once more Bittrich protested, and once more he was overruled. He was told in no uncertain terms that he served now on sufferance - no more sentimentality would be tolerated, and the Americans must be shown that they were conquered.

    This was the climate in which Prescott Bush arrived in Boston to begin establishing a government for the State of New England.
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