Operation Pedestal would ensure that Malta stayed in the fight. But Stalin is not appeased. He wants a Second Front. So does Gen. George Marshall and he’s coming to London to say so. The British had to come up with a plan, big enough to impress the Russian and the American, but good enough not to get everyone killed. Enter the new head of Combined Operations, Lord Louis Mountbatten.
Soviet Gen. Kirponos does reasonably well in defending his SW Front, when he is told what is going on. But that is irregular at best. Soon, Lvov falls and all know that the next major battle will take place along the Stalin Line.