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Book One World War Three 1946

Book One World War Three 1946
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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Royals by Ranger Elite

Scandinavia in WWIII, 1946 

King Haakon VII's Royal Residence
Øslo, Kingdom of Norway

King Haakon was rushing to leave, for the second time this decade. Surrounded by his Royal Guard, he and his family hurriedly gathered what they could carry, on their way to the ship that awaited them. He could hear the gunfire getting closer, and in complete irony, it was he who saw the Soviet parachutes attached to their troopers falling gently to earth...HIS piece of earth! He suppressed his anger and plowed forward, grabbing aides and handcuffing briefcases to their wrists, assigning a Royal Guard officer to each aide. It had been fully two hours now since he'd last heard from his Prime Minister, Einar Gerhardsen, at the conference at the Karlsborg Fortress, in Sweden. For that matter, he hadn't heard from the Royal Danish government-in-exile since earlier this morning, either. He knew that Danish King Christian X's Prime Minister was also at the same conference, along with with the Swedish and Finnish Prime Ministers.

As King Haakon and his family make their way to the armored trucks, they are joined by King Christian X of Denmark and his family. They hurriedly exchange pleasantries and board the trucks, then surrounded by a sea of their combined Royal Lifeguardsmen, begin the hard trip to the harbor, to the American submarine that had been docked there for the past week, training the Norwegian crew that would be replacing it, once the submarine was transferred to Norwegian command. There were a ring of flak trucks surrounding the Kings' convoy to the harbor, all mounting 20mm Oerlikon cannon, elevations fully depressed and hammering away at the Soviet paratroopers. As the two monarchs were now fully able to see Soviet paratroopers running and shooting through the streets of Øslo, out the back of their trucks, Haakon and Christian drew their sidearms and began participating in their own defense, along with the Royal Guardsmen who readily lay their lives down for them.

As the convoy fought its way to the harbor, the way became clearer, as the Soviets hadn't fought their way to this location yet, but Soviet aircraft flying out of Denmark, most notably the Ilyushin Il-2 “Sturmovik” kept strafing, raking each and every wharf, while every ship that was still in harbor and still capable, raked the Soviet attack formations with withering ack-ack and machine gun fire, keeping the Soviets at bay long enough for both Royal families to board the submarine, from which the combined American and Norwegian crew members kept firing their Bofors guns and machine guns, until all were safely aboard. Then, the submarine sped out of the harbor, rapidly diving deep to avoid the Soviet aerial onslaught, taking the Royal families of Norway and Denmark into further exile in Great Britain.

Hit and Run by Tallthinkev

'You can't even chose you're friends sometimes' he thought.
'Here he comes again' said Bob.
Bill looked over to wear Bob was pointing. 'Sod it. I thought he wasn't here today.'

Walking over towards himself and Bob was Hans-Ulrich Rudel. The only winner of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross, with Golden Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds. He had had a remarkable war record, fighting the Russians. Over eight hundred tanks and even a battleship and then became a fighter ace flying FW-190's. And now he was here at Hawkinge to lead Bill and Bob on their first mission to bomb the airfields of France.

Both Bob and Bill didn't think this was going to happen until the next day, but here he was and that only meant one thing. A quick flight over the Channel drop the bombs and away as quick as they could. Rudel had managed to find a FW-190 from somewhere while the two English men both had Spitfire MK21's
'Time for the real thing gentlemen. We will take of just before dusk and be back for supper.' he grinned at the RAF men.

'There's something I don't like about that smile' whispered Bill.
'I know what you mean. Looks like he enjoys this too much' Was the answer.
Rudel looked at them both. 'I have been doing some checking up. You both seem to have good records in the last war' he stopped 'you need to be more ruthless. Kill them all, leave none alive. However that is not our job today.'
'You said we need more training for this kind of thing, I mean the low level stuff. That was Bill again.
'No. I made you think that, I know when men are ready not you. Go and check your machines, we take off in one hour.'

An hour had passed and the rain had started again.
'What do you think Bob?'
'Not a chance, not in this weather. Cloud cover at what? Five hundred feet if that.'
'More like four' said Bob
'Yeah, could be right'
'Are you ready gentlemen?' Rudel was right behind them. 'It is good that the rain has come the Reds would think no one was flying today. You don't needs good sky's when you bomb Reds.'

Twenty minutes later they almost hit the waves they were that low. The cliffs of France less than two miles away. Rudel had started to climb, he cleared the cliffs at what looked like ten feet. Bill and Bob made sure it was at least forty. Less than five miles to go before St Pol-Nunqu, all three took off the safety off their bomb release. Three miles out they climbed to seventy feet and formed up a breast of each other. It was not a good idea to get hit by your friends bomb blast.
The bombs dropped right into the centre of the runway, the three of them pulled up and flew north again. Height didn't matter as much going, as coming.

Back over the Channel, 'Where's he gone? I can't see him anywhere.'
Bill looked around he couldn't see Rudel either. 'Has he done what he told us not to do?'
'As I said. He likes killing too much.'
They both landed safely. As their Spits were being pushed in to their sand bagged hangers, the ground crews and themselves looked up. Rudel was back.
Bill ran over to Rudel. 'What the fuck do you thing you were doing!'
'My job. Killing Stalinist's.' Rudel said calmly
'You trained us, everyone trained us not to go round again' Bob had to restrain Bill.
'Target's of opportunity. As you like to say.' with that Rudel walked towards the C.O.'s office. His office.

The next day, all the flyers were called together.
'Gentlemen. Gentlemen.' There was some calm in a small hall near the base. 'We had done quite well in the last few days, but it is not enough. We will hit them again this afternoon, or just after dawn tomorrow.' said Rudel 'In waves five minutes apart.'

Everyone started to speak at once. Rudel called for silence. He got almost at once. Some hands went up, one of them Bill's.

'Sir, we have always been taught that is the one thing you do not do.'
'And why do you think that.' was Rudels answer.
'The Russians will be ready for us.'
'Not at all. With only five minutes between hitting them they will not be ready. There do not yet have the strength that we had. In airfield defense I mean. Both you, when you took the airbases from us in the last war, and ourselves had, at the same time. That is why 'we' did not bomb the same base twice. It was always the doctrine last time around. So we will change it this time around.'

That seemed to settle them down a little bit. There was still some discontent. Not as much as before. Some could see this working, it had not been tried before. If it had they had not heard about it had others It could work. They were not all happy about it. Orders were orders.

The next day the rain came down harder than the couple day's before. No flying. Or for the day after that. However in the three days after meeting thing were explained more fully. They started to see some logic in the plan.

The first attack went very well. The weather was still not the best. However four fights, each of three planes went in. No losses. The next was not as good. A mix of Spitfires, P-51's and P-47's had taken off from R.A.F. Tangmere. A Thunderbolt had hit another at take off, and two did not make it back. Whether it was due to the weather, or they got shot them down. They did not know. 

All together forty five planes had gone across the Channel thirty six had come back. Four pilot's lost to unknown reasons. Of the other five airmen had two had bailed out over England and safely helped one to the base and other to hospital. Two had crashed. One due to an engine fail the other to enemy action, part of the port wing shot to bits. Lucky the P-47 was a tough plane. Bob had been found dead in his cockpit.

Later that day they heard that Bill had died in hospital.

Tin and Copper Make Brass

The tin came from the Cajalco mine in California. The piece of land that holds the mine is part of a 50,000 acre Spanish land grant. Because it forms a natural passageway through the mountains, the Temescal Valley it had served as an old Indian camping ground, later becoming an alternate route of the Southern Emigrant Trail in the 1850s and 1860s, as well as a Butterfield-Overland stage corridor.

The tin ore was discovered when a shirt tail relative of the local Native American tribal chief was shown what looked like a possible deposit of “metaliferous rock.” He promptly filed claim.

The area became collectively known as the Temescal Tin Mines as hundreds of claims were filed despite two prominent geologist’s reports that questioned the profitability of the area. Nevertheless miners kept coming to the area and digging. The Civil War interrupted most of the mining in the area. In 1868 almost 7000 pounds of tin were mined. Ore specimens were sent to England where they were pronounced the purest quality. The area was pronounced the only the workable body of tin in America.

An English syndicate became interested in the area and bought much of the land in 1891 and imported 200 experience Cornish miners, two were from the little town of St. Mawgan, Cornwall, Great Britain. After their arrival production of the mine increased dramatically. A pyramid of tin was built near the railroad and President Benjamin Harris had his pictures taken at the base of the Pyramid. Yet even so, within the short span of two years, unwise investments and bad management decisions led to the Cajalco Mine’s abrupt closure.

1927 the mine was reactivated and extensive improvements were made. Unfortunately the stock market crash of 1929 forced the closure of the mine once again. 1942 the Timko Corporation of Richmond Virginia bought the mine and reopened it to supply the demand of the military effort in World War II until its final closure in 1945.

The Cornishmen who stayed in the area worked the mine until its closing. Our small amount of tin came from this mine in 1944.

The copper came from the Calumet and Hecla, mining company in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. In 1864 William J. Hobart discovered copper in the area. The town of Red Jacket, now known as Calumet, was built next to the mine. By 1886 the area was the leading copper producer in the United States, in fact from 1869 - 1876 it was the leading producer of copper in the world. Again, like the tin mines, the copper mines fell on hard times and consolidated during the 20s. However they still continue to produce high-grade copper until the 1970s.

Laborers for the copper mine were Finns, Poles, Italians, Irish, and once again Cornishmen with one coming from St. Mawgan, Cornwall, Great Britain.

A particular tragedy of note happened in 1914 at a laborers meeting. A meeting hall was packed with 500 people when someone shouted fire. There was no fire. 73 people died with 62 of them being children. They were crushed to death trying to escape and this became known as the Italian Hall Disaster. One of them was our Cornishman’s youngest son.

United States seems to have a knack for both finding and producing exactly the resources it needed at exactly the right time. From timber to oil, tin and copper, gold and uranium we’ve always found exactly what we need when we need it. The same was true in the Soviet Union and in addition both have needed help in bringing their resources to market. Much of that help for the Soviets is now coming from the former territories of Austria-Hungary, Romania, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, Poland and Germany whereas the help for our tin and copper came from villages near St. Mawgan, Cornwall, Great Britain.

The Empire that the Soviets now held sway over holds every resource they will need to defend themselves from any aggressor. They just need time to exploit it properly.

The tin from the Cajalco Mine and the copper from the Calumet Mine combined to form the brass which was formed into the 20 mm cartridge casing that is the object of our story.

On the spent shell casing is stamped the letters AS which means it was produced at the Aluminum Specialty Company of Manitowoc. WI. Manitowoc is 30 miles south of Lambeau Field in Green Bay, WI home of the World Champion Green Bay Packers and on the shores of Lake Michigan. Millions of exact replicas of our shell casing came from this company’s factory. Four former residence of St. Mawgan, Cornwall, Great Britain worked in this plant.

The projectile end of this assembly was shot in the general direction of a Tupolov 6 Reconnaissance aircraft that was actually doing quite well in evading the Spitfires sent up to intercept it until it's port engine became unreliable near St. Mawgan, Cornwall, Great Britain. This particular projectile missed it's intended target. Others did not.

Our shell casing was ejected from the 2nd of two Hispano Mk II cannons on either side of the British Spitfire fighter plane’s port wing. It and 37 of its cousins fell through the air and fell on a house in St. Mawgan, Cornwall, Great Britain as the projectile went on to miss its intersection with the pilot’s intended target. The second burst from this gun did not miss and sawed off the wing of the Soviet aircraft 6 minutes later in the twisting turn battle over Mawgan, Cornwall. The noise of the shell casings on the roof of the house caused the family living inside to venture out to explore what had made the noise. The three year old girl of the family saw our shell casing and picked it up and held it in her tiny hand as her father held her other hand.

They moved to the center of the street to get a better look and after a few minutes or so they started back to their home when the 8 year old boy saw the wing from the Tu 6 with one engine still attached cart wheeling towards their home and screamed for his father and pointed his little finger at the falling hunk of metal. His father never did see the flailing wing but immediately reacted to his son’s cry of terror and pulled his family into a doorway on the other side of the street.

The wing hit the house and sliced like a knife through the roof and second floor where a small portion of the fuel in the wing tanks vaporized and then exploded from a spark caused by an iron fitting hitting a small fragment of flint in the stones on the fire place. The explosion went straight up taking a large portion of the second floor and blowing off the roof of the house while leaving the walls intact. The debris from the roof rained down upon our little family.

Family lore credited our shell casing with getting the family out of their house and to safety. The little girl cherished the shell casing all her life and it is now prominently displayed over the new fireplace mantle and still in St. Mawgan, Cornwall.

Two metals came from California and Michigan, both mined by Cornishmen from St. Mawgan were combined together by others of St. Mawgan in Manitowoc, WI, USA. This shell casing and the noise it made hitting the roof over our little family probably saved their lives. None of this can be proven of course, but try and tell that to a 69 year old grandmother of six who still lives in the house she grew up in on that same street in St. Mawgan and you will get the story straight from the mouth of what was once a 3 year old girl cowering next to her father as her home exploded in front of her eyes and if her 75 year old brother is sober he will tell you the same story.

The chances that both the shell casing and later the cart wheeling wing of the Tu 6 would both hit the same roof after dropping from a height of 8934 meters is astronomical I'm sure, but such is the irony of war.

On another note. The spent projectiles from the same shell fired by the Spitfire that missed the Tu 6, went on to kill a cow eating quite contently in the middle of a field some distance away. The farmer's wife was about to herd the cow into the barn and was about 2 meters away when the poor creature was struck.

To this day the family living on the farm tells the story of expired cow and speculation abounds as to where the bullet came from. At every holiday family feast and reunion the story grows more and more complex and convoluted. As the old saying goes "truth is stranger than fiction" and none of the stories concocted on the farm is anywhere near as interesting as the truth.

The spent projectile is in almost pristine condition and sits on this families fire place mantle as a memento of their close brush with death. Neither family knows that they possess pieces of the same 20MM cannon round and the stories that go with them.