Shattered World - Micro-Segment 56.1.1
The Two Open Doors
November 19th 1949
November 19th, 1949
At 4:01 AM local time, on the morning, of the 19th, the government of Free France declares war upon the European Axis Powers and re-joins the Alliance for Democracy. At precisely the same time the government of Portugal, under the cynical and self-interested rule of Salazar, surrenders to the Alliance for Democracy and declares war upon the European Axis Powers. It is a diplomatic coup for the Ages, an Alliance masterstroke. Two open doors now sit on the western flank of the Axis.
In Portugal, intensive air strikes on German coastal missile and gun batteries, massive bombing of German logistics, and chaos caused by the Portuguese defection, combine to allow largely unopposed U.S. landings. Under a massive screen of U.S. carrier aircraft, U.S. forces come ashore at two locations at around 6:30 AM, met with handshakes from local officials who have recieved orders from Lisbon to welcome them. In the north, two U.S. army divisions, and an accompanying battalion of British marines, stride onto the beaches at Figueira da Foz. To the south, two additional U.S. army divisions and a battalion of Canadian infantry come ashore 50 kilometers southeast of Lisbon and, with massive air power and naval fire support, sweep aside a rear echelon German infantry unit that happened to be in the area, taking many prisoners.
In Lisbon and other major cities, German infantry and pro-German fascist elements are clashing with Portuguese police, soldiers, and an assortment of anarchists and communists eager to help get rid of the Germans. The scene in most large Portuguese cities is one of chaos, gunfire, smoke, and confusion. Though caught off guard by the Portuguesse defection, the German command in the region is beginning to react in a coordinated fashion by around noon.
First, there is the matter of crushing Salazar's "treacherous" regime in Lisbon(though Salazar himself is safely hidden away until "things settle down"). Then, there is the matter of slowing down the Americans as much as possible while reinforcements can be brought in. By the early afternoon hours, the two real combat-ready German mechanized divisions in Portugal are preparing to move from inland bases and towards the U.S. beach heads.
In the meantime, with the Luftwaffe largely driven out of Ibera by the relentless American air campaign, German strategic rocket forces in western and southern Spain come into action. By the late afternoon, around half a dozen sarin and conventional ballistic missiles have struck each American beachhead, causing moderate disruption but minimal real delays in the U.S. landing operations. Another dozen sarin-tipped missiles hit the Canaries causing mild damage, though one particularly "lucky" strike lands amidst a busy fuel depot, killing hundred's of laborers and soldiers who not been wearing their protective gear.(leading later to multiple court martials)
"D-Day 2" (later called 'Easy Day' in the U.S.)
In Free France, several American divisions pour ashore at that nation's Atlantic ports, greeted by cheering crowds of French colonials and expatriots. Axis reconaisance aircraft note the massive disembarkment, and notify an Axis High Command which has little power to do anything about it at the moment. The Luftwaffe is simply stretched too thin and cannot send any assets to disrupt the American operations. The one immediate effect of these landings is to give even more grim determination to the Axis efforts in Libya - they must now take Egypt or face an inevitable squeeze on two fronts.
Meanwhile; in Free-French Syria Arab nationalist elements, who have been carefully preparing for several years, see an oppurtunity they cannot afford to miss. Within hours of Free France's sudden re-entry into the war, nationalist militias begin mobilizing while an unusual burst of radio communications begins broadcasting in code from Syria to Turkey.
TO BE CONTINUED...