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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Newt Gingrich Goes Back To the Future

Since the new Republican Speaker Newt Gingrich is now said to be the most powerful figure in Washington, his political tract "To Renew America" is gaining considerable attention, although it gives few insights into the new hero of the resurgent right.

But the intriguing mind of Newt Gingrich is on display in his other new book, "1945," a science-fiction work of alternative history, in which Adolf Hitler is incapacitated by a plane crash the day before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

Goering, Goebbels and the army chief of staff General Halder temporarily take charge. Declining to fight on two fronts, they do not declare war on the United States, and they pull back the frozen Wehrmacht from the gates of Moscow. While U.S. aircraft carriers slowly but surely defeat Japan and help Chiang Kai-shek crush Mao's Communist guerrillas in China, the Nazis regroup. Then they renew the attack on Soviet Russia.

"Before Hitler had recovered enough to resume power, the ruling triumvirate had managed to ameliorate and block the worst of Himmler's SS atrocities as well, committing the Reich to a quasi-independent Ukraine."

"Result: 39 divisions of Ukrainian and anti-Communist Russians in the Nazi ranks. It did not matter that after the war the SS gained back its power in the occupied eastern lands. The war by then was already won."

Germany takes everything up to the Volga river. Then it stops and signs an armistice with Britain before the RAF night bomber raids get too troublesome.

A peace treaty with Stalin grants him Moscow, but all the rest of European Russia, from the Baltic Sea to the crucial oil fields of Baku, are brought into the Reich. Hitler recovers to find he dominates the continent, while his scientists have created armadas of new jet fighters and bombers and rockets that will carry the new German atom bomb as far as New York.

The only problem is that the American atom bomb program is about a year from completion. Hitler's top commando leader, Colonel Otto Skorzeny, prepares a massive raid to destroy the Operation Manhattan facilities at Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

The Germans are finally frustrated, not by the American forces but, by the local good old boys, the sheriffs, war veterans and civilian militias with their trusty rifles and old-fashioned sense of justice.

When they find the Nazi sadist who has been executing American schoolgirls: "They left Richar lying there, his groin a red mass. He was still alive, but he wasn't having any fun."

Once the Nazi commandos have been driven off and the Americans turn to saving Britain, our hero comes into his own: "I have a new model, a new paradigm on how a modern democratic state should organize itself to make a surge-effort in war. This is radical stuff, and I'm going to need a cadre of thinkers, thinkers who can take my ideas and run with them and build on them. And that's why I'm dragging you along to Washington."

There you have it, the fevered imagination of the science-fiction fan who dominates the Republican party and runs the U.S. Congress. Gingrich is now working on a new novel, "The Faction," about a new struggle between a sinister Japan armed with Star Wars technology and a weak American president, stiffened by the tough new opposition leader in Congress. Sound familiar?