• Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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Finally, the much-delayed update.


Chapter 39


Sir Ian Fleming, DSO, with the core members of the Special Section, with Leiter second from the right, second row, 1938​



December 25th, 1938 0:23 AM

NID Special Section HQ


Leiter was still somewhat groggy, but after Fleming had made a steaming cup of Coffee he began to lighten up. When he was at least partially human again he asked Fleming: “Now what in the name of the proverbial hell do you want?” Fleming smashed a file onto the table in front of Leiter. “Somewhere in the files we already worked through I've come across Philby's name. As much as I'd like to go to the Admiral at once we have no proof!” “So we are sifting through all these files AGAIN because of one of your hunches and on Boxing Day no less?” “Well, your folks are all in Canada and mine don't await me until this afternoon anyway, so with whom should we share this delightful morning anyway?” Both men paused after this, each for his own reason, before they wordlessly resumed their work. They worked silently for several hours, with only occasional breaks to go to Fleming's Russian Samowar for tea or to relieve themselves. Once in a while one would halt as if he had found something before resuming his work. But then, at about 3:56 AM Leiter found it. “Bloody hell, you were right! He is in here!” Leiter rushed over to Fleming's table and showed him the file. “Litzi Friedman, married to H.A.R. Philby in 1936, immigrated to the UK that same year, divorced early 1937, currently living in Newcastle.” He paused and looked at Fleming. “So what are we going to do now, Ian? Go to the Admiral? This seems to be more than a coincidence for me.” Fleming shook his head. “No, Philby is politically connected. The Admiral would have my head if he knew we where investigating him, and anyway, so far we have nothing more than two low-ish NID Officers acting on a hunch. We need proof, but that's hard to get without the German records in Vienna.” Disappointed Leiter sat back down. “If it is as you say,” he said, “then we can't even have him shadowed. He would either smell the tails or be warned by friends within MI6.” Fleming poured himself yet another cup of tea and leaned back in his chair, theorizing loudly. “What if we simply tell them that we have suspicions that someone might be infiltrating MI6 but that we can't tell him who or how as we don't know how far it is going so far and that maybe even the NID is compromised? Na, that wouldn't work....” He trailed off and both went back to the brooding that had taken over. “What if,” Felix said after some time “what if we tell the Admiral that we are investigating a possible leak within the NID and MI6 and that we can't risk telling him because we don't know yet how deep the penetration runs? He will either understand and let us run with it or tear our head of for going from our original objective and/or not telling him who we suspect.” Fleming shook his head. “He'd still want proof that we can't offer.” He then had a splendid idea. “He worked for NID right? Once everyone is back at work I will call in a favour and have a look at his file under the pretext of recruiting him for our section, maybe we'll find something there.” Leiter caught on. “And if we do we might have enough to go to the Admiral and start asking questions?” “Fleming simply nodded.

“Bloody hell, this business is driving me crazy.” Ian said after a while and slammed his fist on the table in frustration. Yet they were forced to agree that it was the only viable course of action. The Rear Admiral was known for giving his people considerable leniency as long as they got the job done and Ian intended to make use of that. Felix might not have the same gut feeling Ian had, but he had learned to trust the Commander's instincts. “So when do we go to records?” he asked Ian. “Not before the day after tomorrow. All our folks are at home with their folks anyway, and I don't want to darken his mood by disturbing him today of all days.” Felix nodded and said: “Righto, Commander. So, what do we do now?” “I am going to go to my Parents to meet them for the Christmas dinner, and you, Sir are coming with me.” When Felix, honoured by the 'invitation' nonetheless opened his mouth to protest Fleming cut him of and said with his 'CO' voice: “Do I have to make it an order Leftenant?” Felix saw at once that his friend was only joking. “Well, Sir, it seems I shant be given a choice. Lead on, Commander.” he said with a fake upper-class accent and mock-saluted. Ian nodded with a grin and led Felix out to the car.



"Kim" Philby, MI5 file photograph of his later years​


December 27th, Naval Records, NID Section

Lieutenant Commander Ian Fleming was walking briskly through the corridors of the building in search of a certain lady that still owed him one. When he looked into one office he could see her typing down some sort of report without even watching the door. He moved in and after a few minutes of muted discussion and 'squabbles' walked back out with a certain personnel file under his right arm and a pipe in the corner of his mouth, as of yet unlit but already stuffed with the finest tobacco the Empire could produce relieved of several pounds for chocolates and a meal at the Savoy. In spite of the expenses the meet had been successful and the fact that he could have simply ordered the WREN to hand over the files he was in a good mood, as he was finally getting to do the work because of which he had been re-commissioned in the first place. Outside Leiter was waiting for him in the Austin. “I see you obtained what we came here for. What did it cost you?” Making a dismissive gesture Fleming grumbled something about 'closing the eyes and thinking of England' before directing Leiter to drive to the 'Fusilier's Grove', the pub close to the Section HQ where they usually took their lunch and evening Beer. On the way there they discussed everything from Football, that Leiter insisted on calling 'soccer' to the new Spitfire squadron training from Croydon.

Three hours later they were sated with both beer and food and were driving the few hundred yards back to HQ with the secure knowledge in their minds that they had enough to approach the Rear Admiral tomorrow. All their plans were however trashed when they entered the building and the clearly audible voice of Rear Admiral Edwards could be heard. “What in the blazes are you doing with secret personnel files of the NIS? Why is it that a Wren calls me in tears and admits that you practically coaxed her into handing them over?” Recovering first Fleming answered with a slight tremble in his voice: “Sir, we have found some discrepancies with the subject of said file.” He offered Philby's file to the Admiral who grabbed it, skimmed over the first page and then yelled at the two officers. “What in the name of Nelson's grave have you been thinking? Bloody hell, do you two have any idea what will happen if Whitehall gets as much as a wif about this?” Fleming saw an opening and seized the opportunity. “That, Sir, is why we acted in this rather clandestine manner. Had we gone right to MI6 without the proof we have now we would have been laughed out of the building, and that would have been rather counter productive for the matter.” The Rear Admiral saw the reason behind this and grudgingly said: “Well then, what is this proof of yours?” Fleming inwardly yelled with relief but simply started to explain what had happened since the party at the Admiralty. Concluding after a few minutes he said: “Simply put Admiral, it was enough to pike our interest and had you not decided to visit is unannounced we would have visited you tomorrow at the latest. All we want is to be allowed to at least shadow Mr. Philby. If he really is some sort of Spy then he will compromise himself sooner or later, especially if he does not know that the NID is suspecting him, and that is why we would like to circumvent MI5 for the time being and...” “Who knows who else might be in on it and so on.” the Admiral interrupted. “Say, Mr. Fleming, are you sure that what you have showed me warrants further investigation?” After receiving an affirmative the Admiral continued. “As much as I hate to admit it so am I. It is disgusting to believe, but if Ivan or Jerry has actually managed to penetrate then it is a matter of the gravest concern. And if they have managed to penetrate this deep it is also most embarrassing.” He nodded and proceeded to light his own pipe. “Gentlemen, as of now the Special Section is temporarily re-tasked with investigating this. But Gentlemen, I'm sure I don't have to order you to tread carefully.” “No Sir.” the two other Officers in the room answered.


[Game Effects: I've taken considerable liberty with Mr. Fleming's family. Call it creative licence.]
 

trekaddict

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Also I'd be glad if anyone could provide me with a picture of Fleming wearing a Navy Uniform, if such a thing exists.
 

ShadowWarrior

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Nice reading material you got there mate. ;)
Looking forward to the follow-up.
 

unmerged(85800)

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fleming is obviously not as smooth as his fictional creation then. i found that whole part slightly disturbing...
 

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Bafflegab I know how they'll do it of course. Or at least I have a good hunch. I mainly did this at this point so that I can fix this rather emberassing episode before the Cambridge Five can do any more damage to the reputation of British Intelligence.

ShadowWarrior Thank you. However the next updates will deal with the reforms and changes made to the Imperial Military. Expect some tech updates.

BritishImperial Well, the Bond Films and movies have never had the reputation for being realistic. :D He will morph into a sort of less-flashy real life version of Mr Bond over time.
 

El Pip

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Ahhh pipe smoking action. I suspect one can produce a fairly good graph directly mapping pipe/cigar smoking against British Imperial success.
 

unmerged(85800)

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and, interestingly, size of moustaches.
 

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El Pip&BritishImperial Indeed, gentlemen. This is why every RN officer will be issued a pipe, along with every RAF member and British Tank Commander.
 

Doge Robert

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*borrows money from the bank to open up a gentleman's barber shop'*

I'm gonna make a huge amount of money from this.. ;)

Excellent update trek, just as they always are..

I cannot say much about the update, since it deals with my absolute favorite subject and it is, of course, splendid.. :D

However, I see it as quite realistic that Philby might very well have been discovered far earlier than OTL, if in truth, someone had taken the time to located the various 'numbers' and add them up, so to speak.. And your detailed way of going about this simply adds to the pleasure of reading..

Very Well Done.. :)
 

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Doge Robert Thank you. Whenever I read something about the Cambridge five it amazes me how incompetent British Counterintelligence seems to have acted at times.

Chapter 40/1



December 29th, 1938

Conference Room, Windsor Castle

The muted chatter in the room was filling the air, fighting for dominance with cigar and pipe smoke, along with the usual whiskey, Brandy and last but not least huge amounts of black tea. The atmosphere seemed relaxed, but in reality it was far from so. The men assembled in this room were the ones guiding the British Empire through these troubled times, and had been called here to give both their monarch and the Prime Minister a summary of the current state of the Empire and the world, politically, militarily and diplomatically. Both the King and the Prime Minister had emphasized the need for an annual conference of this type, and the PM had even taken on the practice that the Presidents of the late United States had practised and would from now on hold an annual “State of the Empire” speech to Parliament, aside with the Kings annual New Years address. Now here they were, only waiting for the two aforementioned people so that the conference could begin, be gotten over with and they return to their families. When the oak door to the room creaked open and King George VI and the Prime Minister strode in the Secretaries and Ministers rose, only to be ordered to sit back down by the King. His Majesty then opened the meeting while Churchill simply sat back and lit himself a Cigar, without which he was rarely seen these days. He poured himself some brandy from the bottle standing on the desk while the King started to speak. “Gentlemen, in what state is the world today?” Athony Eden was the first to speak and went on to detail the Empire's foreign relations at great length. “Your Majesty, Prime Minister, I would like to begin with the easiest part, America. Our relations with the UAPR is frosty, to put it in the words of my America Desk. The Rednecks hate us with a passion, but this hate is mainly founded in their twisted ideology, not so much genuine dislike. The Americans still remember that we fought side by side in the Great War. Still they hate us and decry the Empire Plan and the Empire itself as the and I quote Chairman Browder here, 'the centre of Imperialism and oppression' unquote. They have made various ludicrous claims and accusations against the persons of your Majesty, the Prime Minister and myself, but according to MI6 these are merely rethorics, the usual communist propaganda.” He paused briefly and Churchill used it to ask a question. “And what about their other relations?” Eden answered after sipping from his glass. “To summarize them in a sentence: They have none. Save for us, whom they have to deal with as the American/Canadian border is the longest one outside of perhaps Asia the practise isolationism by the book. No trade agreements to speak of, as they can satisfy their rare material needs and the Japanese have pretty much a free hand in China, as we are currently pre-occupied in Europe.”

Templewood, the Minister for Security who had considerable 'interests' in the Far Eastern possessions jumped in and interrupted the Foreign Secretary. “So essentially Hong Kong and our other Far Eastern Dominions are undefended!” Eden, along with the rest of the Cabinet inwardly sighed. Templewood was a leftover from the previous administration and was still hung up in the old mindset of the White man's burden also a bit ignorant on anything but his commercial interests. Luckily he hadn't all that much power left, with his internal security duties relegated to Home Secretary Morrisson who was currently meeting with the Dominion leaders of India and British Malaya to discuss the formation of native Security forces. Templewood had only been retained and elevated because he was a skilled propagandist and his efforts had raised the Empires recruitment figures to rise by at least 10 %. Still, he was behaving rather annoyingly when in cabinet meetings, mainly because he was the last appeaser still left in the inner circle of the current Administration. “Not at all, Viscount. We may not have British troops at our disposal there at the moment, but suffice it to say that the ANZACS have displayed great interest in the defence of Hong Kong. I think that Lord Gort will elaborate on that later.” After receiving an affirmative nod from the old Field Marshal Eden went on. “This however does not extend to their southern Neighbours, as we recently found out. Station M in Mexico City has recently found out that the Americans are trying to export their revolution there, and my Amerika Desk thinks that they will not stop there, as they probably want to regain control over the Panama Canal from Panama.” Hore-Belisha, the temporary president of the Board of Trade and the Minister for Armaments interjected here his own departments view. “Gentlemen, I too will elaborate on this later, but suffice it to say that the Imperial trade would be directly affected. Most of our trade is going through the Mediterranean Sea and along the African coast, so we don't really need the Channel in the medium and long term.” “The Foreign Office agrees with this sentiment, and again there isn't much we could do anyway, and for the same reasons. Still, with your permission, your Majesty, and yours, Prime Minister I would like to start improving our relations with Brazil and some of the other, more receptive South American Nations and tie them to us economically and politically so that they won't fall prey to the Communists without a fight.” After receiving approval the Foreign Secretary detailed the more or less good relations the Empire had with the rest of the world before giving way to the President of the Board of trade.

“Your Majesty, Prime Minister, Gentlemen. As you know in the face of the Great Depression and the disappearance of the American markets hit our economy hard, and only the increased trade with the other parts of the Empire so to speak kept us afloat. We were forced to raise the tarifs on foreign goods to protect our own markets, so in the essence we were forced to implement Imperial Preference to keep the Economy going.” There were rumblings around the table from those who were proponents of Free Trade, but they were interrupted by a small gesture from the King. “So you are telling us that we have next to no trade relations with the rest of the world?” “Not at all, your Majesty. Imperial Preference was implemented by accident really, not as stated policy. And it isn't pure either, because we still have more than healthy trade relations with South America and the rest of Europe, especially in the Armaments sector and many European Nations trade resources of all kinds with us, most importantly Coal*, all sorts of rare materials and last but not least Oil, of which we have a gigantic stockpile due to our Middle-Eastern Dominions and several good deals with Venezuela and Saudi Arabia. The amounts of Oil going out are minuscule when compared with the amounts coming in, and we still get additional metal and several scarce rare materials from the French and South America to add to our own production.” He stepped back and Churchill rose to speak to the Cabinet. “All this is on par with a policy I made when we came to power. It is simple really, mainly we build up stockpiles of all sorts of strategic materials, oil, rubber, coal, metal ore, tea, now during Peace Time, so that if war comes we can work of what we have for a given period of time, and therefore reduce our dependency on vulnerable merchant convoys.” The president of the Board of trade resumed his briefing. “Considering Armaments. The raising of new Divisions and the building of new ships is the area of Lord Gort's briefing, but I can say without going into areas outside of my responsibility that our armaments industry is roaring, from the small arms Factories of Royal Ordnance to the shipyards at Harland and Wolf.”

The Chief of the Imperial General Staff stood up and pinned several maps and statistic tables to the board that had been erected at pone side of the room. “As you can all see the Imperial Military is still stretched awfully thin. Our main troop concentrations are here in North Africa around a small railway station called El Alamein, where we have recently constructed a massive Army Base, here at the Siamese/Chinese Malayan border, and of course here in the United Kingdom. We also have colonial Forces here in Kenia and generally around Italian occupied Ethopia to deal with the small Italian garrison there. All in all we could probably hold our positions with massive help from the Dominions, but offensive action is out of the question for the moment, especially since we have decided to always keep at least ten to twelve Divisions in the UK to form the B.E.F. If needed. Now, we have already taken steps to remedy this situation. Recruitment all over the Empire is on the rise, and we think that at least 9000 volunteers arrive in the UK every day to be integrated into newly formed units. We are raising mixed units and homogeneous units alike. There are still some.. resentments that we have to get over, but sometimes it is simply a matter of practicality. For example most of our Mountain Divisions are made up of Scot Highlanders or Gurkha recruits from Nepal.” He cleared his throat. “Our main focus for the enlargement of the Armed Forces of the British Empire is currently the Navy, but the Army too receives its fair share. At the moment we are raising primarily Infantry Divisions to provide a solid core for the B.E.F. By the middle of next year we are planning to start the formation of additional Armoured Divisions.” The Prime Minister asked a question, despite knowing the answer already. “What has been done to update the tactical doctrine of the British Army?” Gort cleared his throat and answered. “We are currently developing a new set of doctrines, both at the strategic and tactical level. In the past we have relied on tactics developed in various colonial conflicts and mainly on the Battlefields of France during the great war. Now during recent exercises we have determined that charging headlong across open space into the fire of Machine Guns is no longer a viable option. The Russians and the Chinese might fight that way, but the British Army values the lives of His Majesties soldiers too much for such stupidity. The new doctrine is currently shifting away from this rather defensive and manpower oriented mindset. I hate to admit it but we think that the way the Americans are going is the best in this matter.” The table virtually exploded with shouts and all sorts of printable and unprintable exclamations, so that the King was forced to make them quiet again. Templewood was the first to speak. “So you are saying that British soldiers are fighting by the Communist book?” Gort inwardly sighed. “Not at all, Sir.”



The future Medium Tank for the Royal Tank Corps​

“What I meant to say was that the basic Idea the Americans are using now is sound. To explain this I will have to go a bit back if I may.” The King made a gesture of approval. “Well then. During the Great War the basic tactic for assaulting a fixed position was simple. Massive artillery preparation followed by Infantry assault. This worked, after a fashion, as long as the enemy was in a fixed position. Now however warfare has evolved since 1918. We can no longer assume that we will fight the next war in the trenches again. The advent of the tank and the aircraft as viable battlefield weapons have changed that rapidly. The projections done by the IGS planning commission show that the next war, even if the Germans follow the Schlieffen-plan again will be a war of manoeuvre, with Armoured Spearheads, supported by Infantry attacking and holding down the enemy, achieving a breakthrough and capturing tactical objectives in the enemy rear as to destroy the field forces of the opposing Army. To meet this threat we are developing both the doctrine and the weapons we need. If we can meet the enemy Tank forces head on we fight them to a standstill, turn them around and push the enemy back to his own territory.” The King seemed to be convinced, but decided to play the devils advocate. “Marshal, how can we be sure this works if the British Army is as small as you say?” Gort had an answer for that too. “The Germans are developing just such a doctrine too, only that they rely on their Panzers some more than we do. We contemplated following their model, but in the end dropped that idea, because the risk of loosing the advanced tank formations to an encirclement was deemed just too great. To answer your question, your Majesty, in the case of a second war in France the French Army, supported by the Infantry Divisions of the British Expeditionary Force would halt the German advances. The French still use their Tanks for Infantry support, but we think that they will be useful there too. Then, after we have fought the Germans to a standstill our own Armoured Divisions, supported by the French would counter-attack. We believe it will work because tank against tank we are at least on par with the Jerries, and in the long run the French and British Armies combined will defeat them before the Soviets can move in to support them simply be sheer numbers.”




*as represented by Energy in the game

[Game effects: This is the first in an annual series of updates that I will post at the end of each year. During the war it will of course concentrate on the military situation. Up next: the RAF and the RN. Also bear in mind that at this point they can't possibly know how crappy the French Army ( in this case more the AI and their doctrines ) will fare in the war. And yes, I will try to hold at least a part of France.]
 

El Pip

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You are being very unfair (much like the evil Swedes at Paradox) on British doctrine. Even in WW1 no-one ran at machine guns towards the end (save the Americans, but they were late and Pershing was so far up his own arse he refused any help).

Mechanisation and motorisation had been going on since the mid 1920s, the Experimental Mechanised Force had pioneered many tactics for Pikey-in-chief Guderian to steal and claim for his own while the RAF was flying around in dive bombers above. Now all that fell apart due to lack of money - there were never enough exercise to develop and practice decent low-level tactics and the equipment had it's share of faults BUT no-one in late 1920s/1930s Britain, in high command anyway, expected to re-fight the Great War.

As to the counter-intelligence failings, it's always easy to be clever in hindsight. Sure the British made massive mistakes over the Cambridge 5, but every service has it's tail of epic incompetence. Look at Alrdrich Ames, almost 10 years at the heart of CIA counter-intelligence while spying for the USSR. All the while buying $500,000 houses (for cash!) and brand new Jaguars that cost more than he earned in a year. Or Robert Hanssen at the FBI for 15 years only caught by accident after many obvious clues (like searching for his own name in the FBI counter-intelligence database to check if anyone suspected him).

I could go on for the French or the Germans (was there any West German politician that didn't have a secretary working for the KGB or Stasi?) but I hope you take the point. There's none so blind as those who don't want to see.
 

ShadowWarrior

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Hope when the time comes, that you will be able to execute yor new doctrines succesfully.
Those Panzers are mean "mother F's" when they are on a roll.
 

trekaddict

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El Pip In regards to tactics: That may be true, and I trust your knowledge on that as it is greater than mine I'm afraid. Gort was simplyfying things for certain... members of the Cabinet in order to stave off uncomfortable questions as to why that was not done earlier and to highlight the differences between old and new.

In regards to counterintelligence: The key word is "seems to have acted", as I do know that MI5 was very adept at catching German spies during WW2 and at the intelligence game in general, I am thinking of Operation Fortitude here, along with Mincemeat. I knew about the other cases you said.

In regard to W-German polticians: You are talking about Guillaume aren't you? Well, nobody is perfect, and tbh, I facepalm everytime I see a documentary about that. :(

ShadowWarrior With hindsight I would fully concentrate on the Army and leave Navy and Air Force for later, but I played this as if I didn't know how the OTL WW2 played out, so you might see things that seem a bit stupid in the light of history. But I am confident of final victory.
 

Kurt_Steiner

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trekaddict said:
Now during recent exercises we have determined that charging headlong across open space into the fire of Machine Guns is no longer a viable option.
NO?!?!

Really?

I'm shocked...







Well, at least we are sure that the Somme is not going to be revisited. :D
 

Enewald

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Kurt, I am shocked too. This might have some odd effects, who knows what? :rofl:

Ah, you are actually going to trust the french? :rofl:
 

trekaddict

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Enewald said:
Kurt, I am shocked too. This might have some odd effects, who knows what? :rofl:

Ah, you are actually going to trust the french? :rofl:

Are you kidding? Of course not! I am merely staying in Character. :D
 

trekaddict

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Hardraade said:
Nice couple of updates there. I, of course, enjoyed seeing Flemming and Leiter going after a potential traitor together. Here's hoping that they catch him before he can do any harm.
Truth to be told I only have a very rough outline for this plot, so I am as abxious to know what happens as you are. I have several OTL and TTL projects/persons etc in mind that he could inform Moscow about... :D
 

unmerged(61356)

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trekaddict said:
Truth to be told I only have a very rough outline for this plot, so I am as abxious to know what happens as you are. I have several OTL and TTL projects/persons etc in mind that he could inform Moscow about... :D
No! Flemming and Leiter will stop him! Then, in the aftermath of the cat and mouse spy game that they played with Philby, Flemming will get an idea for a book. Yes.... :D