Третья мировая война 1946 - Красная волна - Сталин атак впервые - Альтернативная история

Третья мировая война 1946 - Красная волна - Сталин атак впервые - Альтернативная история
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Monday, August 19, 2013

Cambridge, after the bombing by Tallthinkev



Major Whitbread introduced Jack Smith to Reg Markham, they shook hands.
'As you can see well have a bit of a problem here' Jack looked around and could see what the Major meant. From he had already caught a glimpse of some planes on the common from Coldhams Lane. Now that he was closer could have a quick count up.
'I can see seven. Any more?' he couldn't see every part of the now improvised strip.
'We have nine here, two on Midsummer, three on Stourbridge and one on Jesus Green and another on Parker’s Piece.' said the Major.
'That's sixteen in all Mr Smith.'
'Yes I can count, Sargent Major. Also I do prefer Jack we maybe working for sometime,'
'If you say so sir.'
Jack let that go. He had taken a liking to Reg already.
'So, what do you need Mr Smith.' asked Whitbread
'If you can let me have a couple of your men for the rest of the day? They can write down the things, right or wrong with each plane. Will that be all right?'
'Mr Markham. Sort out a couple of the lads to help Mr Smith. It also maybe an idea if you stay as well.'
'Yes sir.'
Whitbread left them to it.

Fifteen minutes later they had reached the first aircraft, a Spitfire Mk XIV. Jack went to inspect it more closely and then asked an army corporal to get in the cockpit.
'In there sir? What do you want be to do?'
This might be a little harder than Jack had thought. 'Get into the cockpit and wiggle the stick around and move the pedals a bit. And don't touch anything else.'
'Yes sir.'
Twenty seconds later there was a burst of machine gun fire.
Jack and Reg had thrown themselves down. After a good minute, lying on the sodden ground they got to their feet.
Very sheepishly the corporal said 'Sorry.'
'Bugger me. I told you not to touch anything else.'
'I didn't, the stick thing had a red button on it and I..'
Jack cut him off. 'Get to the airport and find Willy or Tom. Anybody. And get back here as soon as you can. Take my bike.' It took nearly all his composure not to hit the man.
'Be quick about it man.' shouted Markham. With that the man started running towards Jack's bike and away from CSM Markham.

While the man was away Jack and Reg started chatting. 'Fag, jack?'
'Thank you no, I don't. You got called up again?'
'That's about the size of it. What did you do, the last time around?'
Jack told him 'You?' Reg replied.
'What about before?'
'Working at the Star.'
'The brewery?'
Reg nodded.
'The Burleigh Arms still the brewery pub?'
Again Reg nodded.
'Pint after we finish?' This was typical of Jack, anything for a cheap pint. Free, was even better. The same went for food. Fifteen minutes of more chatting later, Tom came up to them.
'What's what then?'

Two of the planes were right off's, good for spares but not much else. Four more had had a wheels up landing. As with all landings like that different things happened to different aircraft, some, of course, worse than others. Jack thought they could be brought up to standard within a week or so. Another had collapsed it's port undercarriage. The wing tip, on first check, should be all right. Bash it out a bit, it only a bit of ally. But you never knew.

The other two , at first glance seemed to be all right. Still they needed a better look. They were fine.
Clear the rest out of the way and they should be OK for taking off from, almost, where they stood. Would 750 yards be enough?
The consensus was yes.
If they were able to clear everything out the way, tow or push them as far back as they could and then the very short hop to the airport.
That was if they could get the airport back up and running, a tall order at the moment.
The airport had taken some damage on the concrete runway from the bombing. However the grass strips where in much better shape.
Send them to Waterbeach, or Witon? Could well be a better idea, but than they would have to be refuelled, for anything more than 25 miles and this would increase the take off run.
Another thing to take into consideration when space was tight.
Even with Double Summertime it got dark at 8.00pm, so nothing could be done until the next morning.
Jack left, with Reg. A pint or three called.

Things were in hand, the next morning, when Jack had put his bike up at Coldhams Lane. An hour after he arrived and rode the half mile to Stourbridge common.
Nothing could be done there, two were beyond repair and the third, even though flyable, there wasn't a chance it could take off. It was always damp here and the recent rain, short but very heavy showers, had made it more a like a fen than normal.
Nothing to be done could be done with these apart from taking them apart, they couldn't fit them on a lorry as the trip meant going via Oyster Row.
It was getting a little too warm for Jack as he biked the along the river to Midsummer Common
It was almost hot, he stopped by River Lane and took off his jacket.
A minute later he arrived at the common, A slight smile came across his face as her saw the first aircraft.
An Auster.
Something he did know about.
Fabric wings, fabric fuselage and as tough as old boots.
The fly in the ointment was the Fw 190, wheels up, ten feet in front of it and the fact in was upside down made things worse.
'Bugger.' was all he could say.
By the middle of the afternoon Jack had made a quick inspection of all the planes that had been recorded landing in Cambridge. There will be more that was for sure.

Jack return to the airport just after four. Willy rushed up. 'Have you seen it?'
'Seen what?'
'It came in last night, it's wonderful news.'
'Come on spit it out boy.'
'It's wonderful!'
'What's bloody wonderful? Jack was a little peeved now.
'A Yak, one of the jet ones and the pilot he landed it here,'

Spaatz

It was late in the day and hot in the office. General Spaatz was actually nodding off when he heard a commotion coming from down the hall. He was stunned and shocked and couldn't actually move for a full minute when he was told about Hap. He knew about the other heart attacks, but he had no idea that Hap was so close to death, so fragile. The possibility that Hap would die suddenly never seriously entered his mind. He figured that after this latest dust up that Hap would retire, and he would be the most likely candidate to take his place, but this was way too soon to comprehend. It would take him a few days to come to grips with the reality that his friend was dead. Yet he did not have a few days.

When he asked what could have upset Hap he was told about the news that Arnold was dealing with. No wonder he was under so much pressure. No wonder poor Hap's ticker had stopped. Poor Hap. These were war winning or losing choices that had to be made and made now. It was almost impossible for him to concentrate as he poured over the reports that Hap had just dropped and scattered all over the floor when he collapsed. A few of the pages had poor Hap's blood on them. Poor Hap.

He had to take command and take command now. The order to start the long planned operation would take a week to be fully implemented, and the RAF did not have much time left. The Soviets would not be distracted and might start to wonder about where the USAAF was and why they had not assisted the RAF with more planes and pilots. Why were the B29s not bombing their cities? Any day now they could shift their forces back to the targets that truly mattered. The kinds of targets who's destruction had help defeat Germany and ground the Luftwaffe. The only kind of target that the few remaining atomic bombs could have a devastating effect on and thus cripple the Red Army for a good 6 months. With Britain effectively out of the war they could shift their attention back to what undoubtedly was the prize...to what really mattered... to their oil fields at Baku and Ploesti. They could be well on their way to ringing their oil production facilities with those cursed rockets that took out our first attempt to use the Bomb in this war.

The time is now! This is for you old friend...


"Jensen get me Ike. We have a war to win and I'm sure Hap would have wanted us to carry on. Get me Ike ... NOW! We go and we go big! Operation Hap is a go! Get me Kenny after Ike. We go with all we got, and we go now!"

Three days in the New Forest by Talllthinkev

Rudel looked over the landing strip from 1000 meters above it. He could see his planes. Maybe only because he knew that they are there, he thought. The New Forest was ideal for hiding stuff. There were all ready a lot of tracks among the trees, plus the roads that took summer visitors to and from it.
The trees and scrub had to be cut back for the sides of the lanes because of the larger aircraft they were using. That could be put down to coppicing.
He could never have contemplated he would take to a plane like the little Auster he was in at the moment. 'Must get one of these after the war.' he mumbled.
He had, again, been forced, to use whatever came to hand, his beloved Ju-87 had been shot up badly a few days earlier. No chance to get that back in the air any time soon, if ever.

Some how it felt right. The right machine for the job it was designed for. The same, but different from the Stork. Still he wished for a rear gunner.
Then again what would the communists want with a little plane like this.
One more pass and he landed.
He called his officers and senior NCO's to a meeting an hour later. He ran over the good parts of how the airfield was being run.
Which were many.
Then over the not so good points.
Few in number.
Indeed very few in number, excepting those that could be fatal.

'As the leaves are now falling we must have more camouflage. Any thoughts?' he asked
A few men came up with plans. Some that might work others were outlandish.
'Take more time to think and come back to me. I will contact the British army for their input.' he could still not get used to the amalgamation of all land forces into one force.
'Sir?' asked a German pilot 'we had a lot of rain last night. We will have more rain, then maybe snow. How will we get our machines to the strip. Yesterday it took twenty men to get my Thunderbolt undercover and it messed up the ground so anyone flying over could see the tracks it left.'
'Yes I know Hauptmann. I was one of those men.'
'Sorry sir. I didn't know.'
'Of course you didn't you were in the cockpit. Didn't want to get your feet wet.' came a comment from the back of the tent.
Rudel smiled at that one, something a commanding officer shouldn't do, or so he was told.
But it was true something had to be done about the ground and soon. In a month or so they wouldn't be able to move anything to the strip. Tractors may work, then again they, also, would churn the routes to the strip.
Ski's?
No silly notion.
He didn't want to use a fixed undercarriage, unless, or course it was on a Stuka.

The next morning a RAF airman came to him.
He saluted 'Sir I have had some thoughts about the problems concerning wet ground.'
Rudel had a lot of time for, what the British call the lower ranks. They came up solutions that many officers couldn't. They thought as working men, not overgrown school boys.
'Go on.'
'Well sir.'
Rudel could tell that the aircraft's man was nervous. He asked him to sit down.
'Coffee?'
'Please sir.'
'Now tell me what you have in mind.'
'It maybe an idea to use Bren carriers for getting the planes in out out of their tents. Even better if they drag chains behind them.'
'How so?'
'The chains will cover the tracks of, erm, the carries tracks.'
A nod from Rudel. The RAF man carried on.
'For the strip itself, coconut matting. May work.
'Coconut matting? I don't know what that is.'
'It's sometimes used for cricket.'
Rudel was lost now. He knew very little about cricket, only that you hit a ball with a bat, and the man with the ball tried to hit the some sticks.
'I am sorry I do not know much about cricket.'
The RAF man went on.
Rudel was surprised by the number of thoughts this man had. Promotion will be coming his way.

A number of hours later he addressed his pilots. He outlined the plan. Many of the flyers had no clue what their commanding officer was on about, but they still nodded their heads. If, only not to be seen not to look stupid. Inwardly Rudel knew they didn't know. He wasn't sure he himself, knew.
The gist was the that matting would be laid over Marsden boards. In turn the matting would soak up much of the rain that would fall in the couple of weeks or months. A sticky mess for sure. Not thirty centimeters, deep. Ten?
A few accidents?
A lot less than if they didn't, at least try it.

The next morning Rudel inspected yet another new plane, how many had he had now?
Never mind.
This was just another he would out last.
He hoped.

The Hawker Typhoon had a good reputation. A real fighter bomber. Good at all altitudes, two 20mm canon in each wing and four rockets, under each wing. Each rocket it could take out a Tiger tank.
If it could take out a Tiger it could take out any Soviet amour.
He liked the Hawker, it was like a Hurricane, but nothing like a Hurricane. That's war for you, ten years technology in five years.
The underside was painted white with the the same black lines the British and Americans had used after D-Day. The rest was a dark grey. Something that the British called special coastal duties scheme.
Special duties were good words for what he was doing.

The next morning was bright, sunny and of all things warm. The ground was drying out nicely, still the plans of yesterday would have to be put into operation.
Looking over the Typhoon he had been given, a four blade propeller, that took some getting used to, didn't look right in his eyes, but what the hell it worked. An RAF pilot had given him something called a crash course, how get the best out of the plane.
Hopefully not a real crash course, of course.
Something else couldn't get his head around. The English use of words which were opposite of what they meant.
He had sent two planes up to cover his take off. With eight rockets fitted it was time for a little fun, show those Reds who was in charge.

Three Thunderbolts and two Mustangs, also with rockets, accompanied him for the mission over France, and with them six Spitfires, which would hopefully keep any Reds away.
It was the usual type of mission for him, just hit and run. He wanted to do this kind of thing by himself and a wingman. Twelve planes was too big for what he wanted to do. Too small for a head to head and too big to go unnoticed.
As he continually looked about he saw for the first time what a motley collection his flight was. Never more than two the same, and if they were the same different marks.

Rudels flying circus.


He laughed out loud.

Shot Down by Tallthinkev


He ran.

It was all he could think off.
Running and living.
His parachute was only 1k away and not hidden too well.
They hadn't told him there would still be so many RAF aircraft still flying. The last gasp of a dying man.
Some of them had German squadron markings like the Typhoon that had shot him down. Do the high ups know that the English had German pilots with them. Of course they did, that's why they sat in a nice office and planed the victory that was sure to be theirs.
Or could it be an English trick and there were no Nazi's. He knew that Poles had fought the Nazi's with the English, could Poles be shooting at him? No, that was stupid, why would they shoot at him. Poland was now under the care of Stalin. We and the Poles fight capitalism together.

He had made his way from the spat that his flight gotten themselves into. North east in his case, where the others were, he didn't know.
He had managed to nurse his Yak for maybe, 100k more than he could have possibly have had hoped for. True he was away from planes trying to shoot him up further. Also true, he was getting further away from home base.
Southampton had been the target, how the raid went he knew not, hopefully well. Another victory for the Motherland and for the forces of freedom.

It was warm. He was almost wet though, more sweat dripped into his eyes forcing him to wipe it away with the back of his hand
He spied a small clump of trees five hundred meters to his left, a good place to hole up for the night.
After a fitful sleep he was awoken in the early morning by the barking of a dog.
Had this animal been sent to hunt him down?
Or was it some bodies pet?
If it was a hunting dog and it found him what then?
Fight his way out or surrender?
A pet, hide or flight?
He had not been given training for this situation.
Then he saw the dog itself a medium sized mutt, weather beaten and mangy, bounding across the field next to the small wood. Bounding in his direction. He heard a whistle, the dog stopped, looked behind and responded to the call of its master. A few minutes later he couldn't see or hear the hound.

What now? He hadn't eaten for over a day, there was a small stream that ran though the wood so water was not a hindrance. Food was what mattered.
He decided to leave the wood, He skirted the edge fields moving slowly and keeping close to the fences and hedges, after about an hour saw a church and a small village just beyond.
He waited.
It was now getting dark. He couldn't see any one, he hoped over the low wall and made for the door at the rear of one of the houses and gently tried to see if it was open.
Locked.
He tried two more, again locked. He didn't want to make any noise.
The forth house had a back door that was open.
He entered courteously, it was the kitchen. On the table was a loaf of bread, newly baked. He tore into it.
A noise from behind, he turned. Held up his hands and then knelt on the floor. His mouth, still full of bread.
'There's a good lad just you stay there,' said the woman.
He had no intention of doing anything else, the chance of a blast from the shotgun she held made his mind up for him.
A shout 'Mum, mum where are you?'
Should he make a move?
A young boy came into the kitchen.
'John just you stay there. Don't move, do you hear?'
Another voice 'What going on Gwen?'
An older woman entered and pushed John behind her.
'Put that gun down Gwen, can't you see his scared out of his wits. Come on lad get up and sit down I'll make you a nice cup of tea.'

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Tape Recordings from Great Britain #23

Believed to be produced near the end of September in 1946 in the north of Britain.


The reel to reel tap hisses as you listen to the playback. The voices sound like they are coming from the bottom of a well. There is a slight echo in the room used for the interview. There are over a hundred of these interviews still surviving. The identity of the interviewer has not been accurately determined as yet.

Test…test…
Thank you for speaking with us Mr. Mudd.
Well you asked me too didn't yeah.
Let’s get to it then…
Where you involved in the fighting this month?
Why of course I was. Why are we doing this taping if I wasn't?
What was the closest you came to dying during the third war?
Come-on now Brian you know very well where it was. You were there too.
This is supposed to be like an interview Bob. You have to pretend you don’t know me…
Oh alright then…I was driving a lorry with you…er my mate Brian. We had planned to make two runs that day to Coventry carrying petrol in the lorry, one during the day and one during the night. We figured the Reds had run their course and after taking out the near-by airfields they wouldn’t be roaming around anymore. Then we heard it.
What was that you heard?
One of them twin engine jobs. The ones that should have been shot out of the sky and not roaming around free as you please. We had just stopped and lit up a fag away from the truck. You don’t want to be smoking in a petrol lorry you see. Anyway we heard it pretty far off. You get to know the sound of your enemy pretty quickly. I was going to get back to the lorry and move it under some trees when the bastard spotted us and bore right in without a care in the world. He didn’t even use the rockets he had under his wings he just casually shot the lorry to pieces and lite it on fire. A couple of explosions later and “Bob’s your uncle” the lorry was gone along with our means of employment.
Were you hurt?
Not at all and neither was you. I mean… no we had gotten away from the petrol when we saw him lining up on us and dove for cover. He wasn’t interested in us…just the petrol and he got it all. I guess this is how the Jerrys must have felt near the end when they didn’t have any more planes to protect them and the Yanks and our boys just roamed free shooting up anything that was moving during the day. I guess what that tells us is that we are in a similar situation after a month of these attacks. Imagine they have enough planes to roam around even in areas that they have already shot up. Enough planes to just go where you will and shoot up anything on the ground worth the bullets. Now I know how the Germans felt near the end.
And how was that.
They must have felt kind of hopeless. Kind of like it’s getting near time to quit and end this. That we’re defenseless…utterly defenseless.
Is that how you feel?
Turn it off now will yeah Brian. I’m done talking for now.
Sure thing Bob…sure thing.

The recording is stopped.

Hap

General "Hap" Arnold paced around the room. All eyes were glued to his unwavering pace as he strode from one side of the room to the other then abruptly turned and headed back to the other wall. He had not been feeling well but this new challenge seemed to invigorate him. He was thinking just before his staff came with the latest news about the Second Battle of Britain. One more job to do before I retire, was his general thought pattern. He was day dreaming about that retirement when they knocked on the door of his office. It was a nice office but not too ornate. Nothing like Ike's .

The news he had been given was going to require an immediate decision. One that could win or lose this newest war. Well that's why they paid him the big bucks as he overheard someone say a while ago. Kenny was nominally in-charge of SAC but he was the one who had to deal with this information and he was the one who had to tell Kenny to start the countdown or not.

Much like Ike's D-Day decision this one would probably win or lose the war. He had none of Ike's negotiating powers or even a modicum of political savvy. He just got the job done. That's why he supposed he survived severally career destroying episodes concerning his unwavering support for Billy Mitchell, his being labeled a drunkard and his run ins with Morgenthau and by extension Roosevelt himself. Somehow his talents always won him a second/third and even forth chance.

The news he had to act on consisted of three reports. One: stating that the RAF was on its last week or two of existence. Two: the VVS has committed all the planes they were going to commit to their attack on Britain and the odds will never be greater for success in attacking the Soviet Bear where it counted. Three: General Kenny reported that he could be minimally operational in 7 days and could in theory carry out the attacks that SAC was designed to accomplish.

Minimally operational...what the hell did that mean? Kenny had been so brilliant in the Pacific. Was this new concept beyond his reach. Was he too tactically orientated? Had he been elevated beyond his abilities? Too god damn late to change horses in mid-stream now. LeMay would have been the better choice but you had to go with the horse you rode in on or some such lame excuse. It really was too late to change commandeers. Wait that was not the correct word.

All of these thoughts were rampaging though his brain when things started to get all jumbled up. He couldn't think straight. All he could do was to keep pacing back and forth even that was getting more and more difficult. SHIT! he was having another heart attack or stroke. Shit!...what was he thinking so hard about...why was he walking back and forth? Who were these people and why were they looking at him? Why couldn't he move his left arm. Oh hell here it came..THE PAIN the all too familiar PAIN! He had to fight through this and make some kind of decision...but what about. It was all he could do to keep from falling down.

"Hap...you okay?! JEESUS SOMEONE CALL THE DOC!"

Henry Harvey Arnold hit the ground with a sickening thud. His head bounced off the floor and a red stain started to form almost immediately. This alone probably would have killed him but he was dead even before he hit the ground.

The Generals by Tallthinkev

The officers stood as Lord Louis Mountbatten entered the lounge of the Great House Hotel in Bridgend.

One of the main reasons, perhaps the main reason, Mountbatten was chosen for this meeting, was he was well respected within the government, armed forces, his connections to the Royal Family and who his father was.
The number of general's, was almost overwhelming, let alone the number of field marshals.

'Please be seated gentlemen.'
They did, but only after Mountbatten had himself had relaxed in a comfy arm chair. The meeting was very relaxed. There were no armed guards within the room, just the couple of dozen or so Germans and the admiral and his two aids.

'We, as you know, are facing a most ruthless enemy this land has ever faced. To be blunt about it we need your help. You gentlemen have proved your worth facing the forces far greater to your own. Many times your hands were tied, because the ravings of a mad man or by petty politics. Some of you have, say we say, had a shady war. Rumors of war crimes, being explicit (right word?) in the extermination of millions of innocent men, women and children. As yet we have no, absolute proof, and you have not faced a court of your peers.'

Mountbatten carried on.

'If you chose to help our cause. Any crimes that may come to light, your future actions may well be taken into account.'
He was interrupted 'Is that why there are no members of the SS here? That is if I may ask?'

'General Von Manstein, you are correct. There are no members of the SS here, There will be no officers over the rank of captain from the SS in the new German army. All other ranks will be dealt with case by case. I also know that many here did not look kindly upon the SS.'


The meeting went on for some hours. Quite a number of the officers were willing to help, there were conditions however.

Would any German members of the new army be under the control of British officers? The answer was yes. There was to be no overall command of the German forces, as such. However they will working with them, and within the Chief’s Imperial High Command. You will also have a very close working relationship with Viscount Montgomery.

Would all those at the meeting be able to keep their rank? Another yes.
Medals were something that needed more talk than both sides expected. It was agreed that ribbons would still be able to be worn. No swastikas were to be shown.

A compromise.

After an evening meal, it was decided that another day of talks were in order.


Over breakfast the next morning the meet resumed. The matter of uniforms had be mentioned the day before. Within an hour the matter was settled. Officers of staff rank were to still where their own uniforms, without swastikas of course. All other ranks would wear standard British field dress, or the equivalent for the RN, Marines and RAF.

Weapons were to be of standard British issue, however if there were substantial number of German armament’s, with ammunition, then they could be used. As for ships, aircraft and tanks very much of a case of anything that came to hand was to be pressed into service, training to be given were necessary.


After a noon meal the real talking started. By the early evening the command structure of the new German armed forces was almost complete.
There were a number of protests from some of the older Germans they were not happy being, as they saw it, left out. They were told that still valuable but their age, more acutely their health was not conducive to day to day running of a modern army. They were still to be an active part of an overall plan to defeat the enemy. When some protested, most notably Field Marshall Gerd Von Rundstedt it had to be pointed out rather bluntly that they were passed it. In an effort to placate them a plan was already in place. They along with senior British personal were to be sent to Castle of May(?) in Scotland to war game. They knew much more than their British counter parts about fighting Russians. They may have not be happy about, however they reluctantly accepted it.


At the conclusion of the three days of talks the new German High Command was addressed by President Galland, there were still those who resented his position. The Prussian's among them did, however they still, and would continue to do so, respect the chain of command.

The overall plan, the armed forces of the new Republic of Germany was again talked over. Most were not unhappy, a few still had reservations. Another few said, outright, they would have no part of any plans whatever.
What to do with them? Lock them up again in Island Farm? A retirement somewhere out of the way? Something else to mull over.


Two days later another meeting was called. In the intervening forty eight hours a number of matters had come to light, some small, some not. It was mostly logical things. The German air force, formerly the Luftwaffe, would now be within the direct control, and indeed a full part of the RAF. What was left of the Kriegsmarine wound become part of the Royal Navy.
The Heer was a different kettle of fish. It was big and getting bigger. More than 350,000 from POW camps in Britain, 30,000 from Canada and 250,000 from the USA. This hopefully would become to 400,000. Other POW's in Europe when the Russian invaded, had managed to escape along with the allied troops.

All in all up to 1,000,000 men, maybe more.
In its self it was an army.
An army too big to inter great.


This meeting was very relaxed and small the German generals sitting in arm chairs, as was Mountbatten.
'Your thought's gentlemen.'
Galland was about to speak.

'If I may?'

A nod from the president.
General Guderian continued 'We have to agree with your plans for the Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy, if for no other reason, they are all good points.'

'I'm glad to hear that general. But I do have a feeling there is something about the army I may not like.'

'I do not think you will have too much of a bad feeling.'
'Do go on.'

'We still need time to arrange our forces, it will take no more than two months. Men are still, how do you say? All over the place?'
A nod.

'Many men have been working the land they will need training again. As will those coming from overseas. New formations will have to be made. The names of these formations will be different from the ones used in the last decade. It will not be wise to bring up bad memories. We will go back to the names that were used under the old Kaiser. 1918 if you wish.'


After an hour the meeting was all but over. 'Is there anything else gentlemen?'

'Just one' said von Rundstedt.

The meeting broke up.


'Do you think they are serious?'
'I'm not sure Philip. Do you? What ever happen this is something I will have to ask her Majesty.'