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

Author says: this is the last installment of my series on Petain being the Savior of France in 1940. When Petain changes his mind, and later goes where he went originally in our time line. he is illegally but emphatically removed from office and placed in isolation in Scotland, from which he is hadly likely to escape. Please note that the opinions expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of the author(s).

Men, and Trees, Are Measured When They Are Down The Year 1951

On July 23rd,French Fielld Marshal Henri Phillippe Petain dies after a very long life, the last five years which were spent in a fog of
Alzheimer's. Many people believe that evidence of his mental decline can be seen when he posed as the symbol of French resistance in the crucial years of 1940 and 1941.

Winston Churchill,  Prime Minister of Great Britain, tipped French military chief Charles de Gaulle that Petain had made a deal with Hitler. Petain would arrest de Gaulle and other War proponents and allow the Germans to withdraw from France without further fighting so that the Germans could confront the USSR without any distraction.

Instead Petain was flown by deception into Scotland. Publicity was managed so that journalists actually believed that Petain had suffered a major health crisis and that he needed to be cared for in secret so he could make a recovery. Top doctors were asked neither to confirm or deny that Marshal Petain was under their care. Instead, the Marshal stayed at Glamis as a man under house arrest. While there, he contributed to the legend of the Glamis Castle Monster.

As it happened, Pierre Laval was imprisoned in barracks and the Germans never managed a military breakway from  their commitment in France.

Indeed, de Gaulle in Orleans and Churchill in London  pressed the Germans all the harder when the Red Fury was launched by offensives into East Prussia and German occupied Poland, together with an assault from armies trained for crossing mountains,   that was spearheaded by Russia's  World's Largest Parachue Drop on Ploesti, Romania.

The strain was too much for the German Reich, particularly when the actions against Ploesti proved beyond German chemistry to cure. And at the same time,  a British / Canadian army had been successfully landed at Calais in the same week that the French chased Germans out of Paris.

Germany's' last success had been its winter offensive against Warsaw, that had pushed the Russians out of Poland in the winter of 1941.

Hitler still died of a heart attack in Munich during a British bombing raid, and the War in East and West Europe ended in March 1942.

Henri Philippe Petain, still Premier of France, was released on an agreement between him and de Gaulle that he would not make a big issue of his enforced retirement. Instead, the wisdom of that wartime move was the subject of the first post war election, which de Gaulle lost. Pierre Laval again became Premier, backed by at least 60 per cent of the National Assembly.

Winston Churchill was also out of office in 1942, replaced as Prime Minister by Clement Attlee of a Labour/Liberal coalition. The worst mark against the Tory PM was that his diplomacy and military precautions did nothing to prevent the  USSR's rollover of the Persian Gulf.  With Britain facing six fold increases in petrol costs,  all at Russia's advantage,  the British voter did not esteem Churchill's record.

The Japanese Government took very seriously the German failure to conquer France and ceased to draw closer diplomatically to Germany and Italy. That enhanced moderation meant that Japan never offended the USA to the degree at which American oil and scrap metal was to be forbidden Japan.  War was never made by Japan against the United States though War did come  by 1947 between Japan's Manchuko and Russia's Korea.

With the return of peace long before the 1940 election and the less than edifying example of Petain's imprisonment  in Scotland, Franklin Roosevelt gave up on a fourth presidential term when his top poll rating was  20.40 per cent in favor. "Warmongering"  was a dirty word in 1944 when  Charles Lindbergh defeated Henry Wallace for the top office.

The remnent of self-governing Germany, still capitoled in Flensburg, Germany, adjacent to the Danish border, ended on the west bank of the Rhine. Too small to be a major influence on its neighbors,  it is a small strip of land whose Chief of Government is still Karl Donitz (Hitler's appointee) and where a Chancellor once was  Albert Speer.

In this universe, where continued French resistance protected Jews in France  and where there was never a long period when Nazis held Jew filled Eastern Europe for years, the Final Solution to the Jewish Problem never got implemented, and so the public image of Nazis never got darkened to the same degree. So no one gets angry if one-person waterbikes on the Rhine  are rented out with swastikas on them.

Author says this is my seventh (and last) 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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