Italy 1936 - An alternate Italian history of World War II
Negotiations between Yugoslavian communists and the Soviet Union break down when the Soviet agents impose harsh demands for any communist state to be established in the Balkans. Stalin does not believe the partisans have any chance of victory now without a significant Soviet contribution and needs to be duly compensated. Though as a sign of "goodwill" enough equipment for two regiments is agreed to be smuggled into Yugoslavia for use by the rebels.
A design for a new Italian tank is submitted to the army. The new design is heavily influenced by the German King Tiger tank. A review board is expected to make its decision on introducing a new tank by May.
Not being charged with any crimes by the Nuremberg court, Hans Ulrich Rudel and Otto Skorzeny are released from custody. Rudel is given a commission in the military and will be tasked with advising and training flight crews in dive bombing and attacks on shipping. Skorzeny turns down an offer to become an advisor and instead takes up a career as an engineer.
Piaggio introduces the Vespa to the Italian public. Many Italians who can not afford cars take a liking to it, and numerous orders are placed for the first run of the vehicle.
Fighting continues in the mountains of Yugoslavia as the partisans attempt to secure a reasonably sized portion of land in which to declare independence.
An Army review board approves of a limited production run for an Italian version of the King Tiger designated the P. 46. The board found it would be too costly at this time to completely replace the Italian tank force which has recently been just completely overhauled with the P. 40. However it is recognized a new tank will be needed to compete with the more powerful Soviet models. A compromise is made where for every four P. 40's produced, one P. 46 will be built.
Marshall Tito barely escapes capture when Italian forces raid a partisan hideout after a tipoff from a local shepherd. Other top officials are not so lucky and are arrested and executed.
*Note: Though it is not part of the official report, it is also noted that for the most part Italian industry cannot produce the King Tiger in the significant numbers needed to completely replace the P. 40.*
The remaining high ranking Nazis are released from custody under assumed names and moved to one of the "German towns," most will return to their prewar professions and some will relocate to South America to add another degree of separation between them and would be pursuers.
After long delays, the first Italian jet fighter squadron is ready for training.
October 15th 1946
The Nuremberg trials pass down their verdicts and many Nazis including Goring are found guilty of crimes against humanity. Goring escapes the hangman’s noose by committing suicide hours before his execution.
October 20th 1946
The Rome trials hand down their sentences to the accused Nazis. Exactly half of the accused are found not guilty. The Fascist court rules that "following orders" is a justified defense and that a soldier is absolved of all moral and legal obligation when given an order by a superior officer. This would be an example of the ancient Roman mandate for all soldiers. The remaining half who were mainly prison camp guards arrested in Austria are found guilty since they received no orders for their actions and are therefore not protected by the Roman mandate. They are given prison terms varying from 5-15 years.
October 21st 1946
The United States and Britain protest the acceptance of the defense "just following orders," from the Italian courts claiming it serves as a bad example to any future wrongdoers. In protest both nations pull their ambassadors from Italy.
December 23rd 1946
Dozens of Nazis meet in northern Italy to discuss how to give aid to SS members still in danger and discuss their future operations. The participants all agree that efforts have to be made to secure the safety of their comrades still in Germany and abroad. They also agree that businesses and charitable funds should be established to finance the remnants of the Nazi party worldwide.
More radical Nazis want to continue the fight against the communists and the west through guerilla raids. It was Himmler’s original plan to fight on from the Italian Alps, but the confiscation of weapons and the detention of his men put an end to that plan before it could get off the ground. For the most part these proposals are large ignored. The more moderate Nazis realize such overt action would just provoke a backlash from the Italian government who are now just merely tolerant of the remaining Nazis.
To offset this, the Nazis will offer their support to the Fascist government in any and every possible way to make sure they stay welcomed within the nation.
On this day, the "Organisation der ehemaligen SS-Angehorigen" or Organization of Former SS Members(ODESSA) is formed.
*Note: While it is debatable whether an organization known as ODESSA ever existed or if it just served as a blanket term for any group made of up former Nazis for the purpose of this timeline, we will assume that such an organization can exist. Since, the Nazis here have a safe base in which to meet and plot it is much more likely that they will be able to form a large organization that can in turn enter into numerous ventures, both legal and illegal. Plus it also serves as a good point of conflict for the future.*
December 28th 1946
Faced with no choice, Marshall Tito is forced to agree to the Soviet demands for intervention. He prepares to sneak across the Romanian border to sign official documents with Russia that will recognize the People’s Republic of Yugoslavia.
January 5th 1947
At a road checkpoint surrounding the contested territories of Yugoslavia, a wagon is stopped and searched by soldiers, huddled under blankets the men find Tito and place him under arrest.
January 6th 1947
Under heavy security, Tito is flown to Rome and condemned to death by hanging. Later in the day he is hung and has the body thrown into the Tiber river.
The execution of Tito is the virtual deathblow to the partisan movement, without Tito there is no chance of Soviet aid and morale among the under-supplied band plummets. Most of the leaders of the movement have been captured or kill in the past months and there is no one with Tito’s magnetism to hold everything together. This marks an end to major fighting.
January 20th 1947
Mussolini announces to the Italian population that the rebellion in Yugoslavia have been finally put down.
A Fascist scare sweeps through the United States after protesters take to the streets in cities with large Italian populations. Many immigrant Italians are upset of the governments position towards Italy and want to normalize relations with Italy.
The House Committee on Un-American Activities conduct investigations on these groups members to see how much of a threat they pose to the United States.
The Truman Doctrine is created to protect countries at risk of falling to communism(and fascism.) Turkey is promised hundreds of millions of dollars in aid.
*Note: Historically the Truman Doctrine gave aid to Greece and Turkey, with Greece getting 75% of the 400 million aid package. But since Greece is a fascist puppet in this timeline, Turkey will be receiving a considerably large aid package worth approx. 375 million to help prevent in from Soviet incursions and another fascist invasion.*
A worker at the Brooklyn Navy Yard is arrested after he tried to smuggle drawings of an Essex carrier out of the yard. During an interrogation he admits that he was hired by an Italian to procure the plans. It is not clear how much of the design has been compromised. The Italian agent is not apprehended. Security is increased at the Navy Yard.
Italy denies all accusations of having spies in the United States and calls the claim to be hate-mongering against the Italian people by a xenophobic American government.
August 14th 1947
Pakistan declares its independence from Britain.
August 15th 1947
India declares its independence from Britain.
August 16th 1947
In response to the releasing of the two nations, Mussolini boasts that the British Empire is in decline from its own decadence and that the New Roman Empire is now truly the greatest empire in the world.
October 20th 1947
The first Indo-Pakistani war begins.
October 23rd 1947
Construction is started on Italy’s first true aircraft carrier. The design is heavily influenced by the Essex class with what information that could be gathered about it. Mussolini wants the ship ready within the year, which apparently is the time the U.S. could complete a ship. More realistically, the Italian Navy will be lucky to complete the ship by late 1949.
Construction also begins on two submarines based off the German U-boat currently in Italian hands.
The United Nations votes to partition Palestine into two separate areas, one for Jews and the other Arabs.
November 30th 1947
Mussolini protests the partition of Palestine citing that the Treaty of Italian Neutrality states that any area of Middle East not under British control is considered to be within the Italian Sphere of Influence. According to Mussolini since Britain is giving up their rights to the area, any decision on what to be done must be left to Italy.
December 1st 1947
The British people create an uproar over the Treaty of Italian Neutrality. Most outside of the government had no knowledge of the treaty until the Italian protest over Palestine. To most, it is affront to all that was fought for in the war and a slap in the face to British honor.
December 3rd 1947
Trying to save face with the people, the British government declares that the Treaty of Italian Neutrality is dead. Italy violated both the spirit and letter of the treaty by continuing trade with Germany or not putting an end to an obvious black market. It ends with stating that the United Kingdom will not move against lands currently under Italian control but will use all its power to prevent Italy from gaining another inch of land.
December 5th 1947
Striking back, Mussolini calls Britain to be weak and appeasing. "Churchill, your ‘greatest’ leader in centuries feared Roman might enough to sign this treaty, what chance do you, Clement Attlee have against my legions."
December 7th 1947
In exchanges which have just degenerated to personal attacks against each other, Clement Attlee informs Mussolini that the British people and nation are more than ready to dismantle the "New Roman Empire" stone by stone.
December 9th 1947
In one last fiery message, Mussolini proclaims that the New Roman Empire will exercise its right of dominance over Palestine and if Britain attempts to interfere it will be war.
December 10th 1947
The entirety of the Italian fleet departs from port and steams toward rendevous points throughout the Mediterranean.
December 15th 1947
Britain responds against the Italian action by bringing large elements of the Home Fleet into the Med.
December 20th 1947
The United States, France and all the Commonwealth nations voice their support and aid to Britain. Spain offers its moral support to Italy but refuses to aid economically or militarily. Greece chooses(virtually forced Italy) to offer its full support to Italy.
December 25th 1947
In a speech, Mussolini says it will soon be time to remove every last vestige of the Anglo presence from lands mandated to be ruled by Italians.
December 26th 1947
Fearing that Mussolini is believing his own propaganda the Grand Council of Fascists and Comando Supremo meet to organize the unthinkable, a coup against Il Duce . . .
End of Part 16.
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