This post is part of an after-action report of Unconditional Surrender! (Salvatore Vasta, GMT Games) and therefore entirely fictitious.
Written by Salvatore Graniti, Secretary of Legation in the Italian diplomatic service, recently posted to the Italian embassy in London
To his Excellence the Foreign Minister of the Kingdom of Italy
the following report on the recent developments in the political leadership of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is most humbly submitted to you.
The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, the Right Honourable Neville Chamberlain, has resigned from his post during a meeting of the War Cabinet in the evening of December 18, after the last German soldiers had been expelled from the south-east of England. He argued that the failed invasion had irrevocably damaged the confidence Parliament and the British people could have in his leadership. He is succeeded by the previous Foreign Secretary Edward Wood, Viscount Halifax.
The new Prime Minister has been chosen with the approval of his predecessor. Viscount Halifax enjoys a good standing in the Conservative Party, on which Her Majesty‘s government rests. As the Prime Minister has supported his predecessor’s approach of finding a peaceful solutions to the European crises of the 1930s, he is expected to reach out to the German Empire in search of a negotiated settlement. His long-standing friendship with the Kingdom of Italy makes it seem likely that the United Kingdom would honor its previous commitment to support a transfer of French colonial possessions in North Africa and the Middle East to our country. Viscount Halifax has announced that he will remain Foreign Secretary in addition to his duties as Prime Minister.
It must be noted, however, that the choice of Viscount Halifax as the new Prime Minister has not been made unanimously in the Conservative leadership. There is a significant faction which supports a continuation of the war against Germany and which sees the invasion attempt as further reason to ensure British security by defeating the German Empire in conjunction with her ally, the Kingdom of Italy. Some influential members of this faction strive to reach an alliance with the Union of the Socialist Soviet Republics whose relations with Germany have been strained to the extreme by the Soviet expansion in Eastern Europe, culminating in the recent clashes at the East Prussian-Lithuanian border. The most vocal member of this war faction is the Right Honorable Winston Churchill, the First Lord of the Admiralty. As it has been the First Lord of the Admiralty’s policy to concentrate as many ships as possible in Britain’s home waters to deter and defeat the German navy, his reputation has been severely damaged by the Royal Navy’s failure to intercept the German invasion fleet. That he has not resigned from his post has been the war faction’s price for supporting Lord Halifax as Prime Minister.
The mood of the British population is mixed. While the virtues of the outnumbered and outgunned British Army’s home forces in repelling the mighty German First Panzer Army at the outskirts of London and forcing its retreat due to the inability to capture a supplying port have been duly celebrated, the general feeling is not euphoric. Lord Halifax’s election reflects this sentiment. Choosing him over the First Lord of the Admiralty shows therefore that it is the shock of the invasion, which has carried the day, and not the defiant pride of having repelled it.
I have the honor to remain your most obedient servant
Salvatore Graniti, Secretary of Legation at the Embassy of the Kingdom of Italy in London
You can see the current state of affairs in the game in the Twitter thread: