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Marshal Petain & The Orleans Regime, Part Four by Raymond Speer

Author says: what if Marshall Petain continued the fight from Orleans? muses Raymond Speer. Please note that the opinions expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of the author(s).

Drang Nach Osten The Year 1941

On January 22nd,there was a formal surrender of the Libyan port of Tobruk by its Italian garrison. The victors,  Giraud's mostly native Army of Algeria and some recently arrived Australians by way of Egypt, had beseiged the city for two days.

Italian Field Marshal Rodolfo Graziani is falling back on Tripoli, Italy's last possession in Libya, since the Italians also lost Benghazi to Alexander Wavell.  Within a month, two German divisions are expected to be off loaded at Tripoli (one armored, one motorized) under the command of Erwin Rommel.

Meanwhile the front lines curling around Orleans have gone static over the Christmas Season of 1940.  British and French military intelligence confirm that the Germans have been raiding their resources in France and seem to have abandoned expectations of a collapse of French resistance.

A popular poster  shows teenaged Joan of Arc looking with admiration towards Marshal Petain. The caption is ORLEANS RESISTS but wags say the picture shows the luck of an old man.

Far to the East, in a forest project for East Prussian oaks,  Adolf Hitler has spent most of his time recently anticipating War on his East Front. Hitler and his generals surveyed the new set up of divisions, tanks and warplanes that the Reds were amassing.

"In Kursk,  Zhukov has assembled an attack in a hundred and fifty divisions that is to go west and into Romania, aimed at our Ploestii oil. Simultaneusly,  we believe that the Russians will roll north of the swamplands and onto the Polish plains."

"How big do you suppose their Northern offensive to be?" asked Adolf

"They will strip bare all their resources back to Moscow," said the briefer. "We suppose a minimum of sixty divisions and with seventy divisions in reserve around Bryansk."

"And their parachute capacity?"

"Mein Fuhrer,  the Soviets are organizing a corps of parachutists and training them  in Kharkov and further east so we cannot observe them that closely. The obvious use for those men is an airborne surprise landing the first day directly on Ploesti.."

Hitller peered at Poland and Galacia. "We must not lose Ploesti. The loss of that oil will bring our motorized divisions and Luftwaffe to a halt."

There was a round table discussion as to when Stalin might decide to set his offensive. The earliest date would be in mid-March 1941 with the optimum day being in May 1941.  "They could lauch their attack as late as the fall."

"We might face diversionary attacks from the South, from the Yugoslavs and the Greeks.  Both of those petty nations and Bulgaria have been arrogant ever since Italy embaressed itself by threatening them just before the Italians lost their Libyan colony."

Hitler grimly nodded at his briefer. Hitler then turned to his right had side and asked Foreign Minister Ribbentrop what news he had from Pierre Laval.

" Laval says that Petain would want to take Libya from Italy so that France holds all of North Africa except Egypt. Syria, of course, remains a French possession. Moreover, Italy all the way to Milan should be ceded to France at least for ten or twenty years."

Hitler waved his hand. "What will they do for us?"

"Laval says that Petain will order the arrest of Marshal Charles de Gaulle and his insiders. All of France must be evacuated immediately by us  and we will pay France an indemnty of a hundred billion gold francs."

"And what of Poland?" Hitler asked.

"Laval says that the size of Poland and the nature of its government can be decided by further negotiation."

"Interesting, perhaps tempting," said Hitler.

Author says this is my fourth installment in my Marshal Petain & The Orleans Regime.

Other Contemporary Stories

Last Anglo-French War 1940-1944 Last Throw of the Dice Crazy Heads

Raymond Speer, Guest Historian of Today in Alternate History, a Daily Updating Blog of Important Events In History That Never Occurred Today. Follow us on Facebook, Myspace and Twitter.

Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items explore that possibility. Possibilities such as America becoming a Marxist superpower, aliens influencing human history in the 18th century and Teddy Roosevelt winning his 3rd term as president abound in this interesting fictional blog.


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