Discussion:
WI first the Soviets fell, then the Germans, in WW2?
(too old to reply)
r***@gmail.com
2005-02-01 04:34:02 UTC
Permalink
I'd just like to begin this post to affirming that Andrew Reeves and I
did _not_ meet at the Yonge-Wellesley Starbucks in downtown Toronto
this Sunday afternoon just past to talk about affairs
alternate-historical. Never happened.

One thing that never happened was a discussion about the consequences
of a German victory on the Eastern Front against the Soviet Union in
1941-1942. If Leningrad and Moscow fell and the Soviets were driven to
the Urals or beyond (or worse, if the Soviet Union was shattered),
horrid consequences could be expected for the Russian and Ukrainian
populations. Death rates comparable to the one-quarter fatalities among
the Poles seem possible. The situation for minorities singled out for
genocide elsewhere in occupied Europe--particularly though not only the
Jews--and for populations planned to be subjected to colonization would
be fairly grim.

That said, Nazi defeat would become inevitable sometime in the
1945-1946 timeframe once the Americans developed nuclear weapons. The
For All Time scenario of nuclear weapons being treated simply as
larger-than-normal explosive would come to pass, as assembly-line
production of nuclear weapons would allow the Allies to punch holes in
Nazi forces (and German cities, and unlucky occupied territories)
almost at will. Unopposed firebombing raids comparable to those which
devastated the Home Islands would also seem likely.

The net result? By the end of 1946, a continental Europe devastated to
a substantially greater degree than OTL, with the Low Countries
(unfortunate battleground), eastern Europe (site of mass slaughters)
and central Europe (target of nukes and firebombings) in particularly
bad shape. The Soviet Union would be only a minor factor, if a factor
at all; the United States would reign supreme, followed distantly by
Britain.

This world, with a more complete Holocaust and rather greater
atrocities committed against Slavs, and wouldn't be a good one for
Germany already hit worse than OTL. The loss of disputed territories to
German neighbours--Upper Silesia, Danzig and East Prussia to Poland,
the Saar to France--and the whole transfer of ethnic Germans lying
outside of the frontiers of the Reich of 1937 can be taken for granted.
Further punitive territorial losses, particularly to Poland (Pomerania
and Silesia), are a possibility, depending in part on what happens to
Poland's eastern frontiers. Bavarians and Saxons, like Austrians OTL,
might find it convenient to distinguish themselves from "the Germans"
in order to achieve a more speedy rehabilitation. Germany proper will
be a long time recovering, if, in fact, something like the Morgenthau
Plan isn't enacted by Allies appalled by the death toll.

The situation in central and eastern Europe bears comparison. With the
Soviet Union wrecked, the 1939 frontiers--Finnish Karelia remaining
Finnish, Bessarabia remaining Romanian, the Baltic States remaining
independent, Poland keeping the _kresy_--will be restored. Within those
frontiers, there may be a strong possibility of Ukraine gaining its
independence from a non-existent Union. (Expect serious conflicts with
the Poles concerning Galicia.) The outcome of events within the RSFSR
are, I suspect, up for grabs. Poland will be in a relatively stronger
position, without Soviet occupation and likely with some territorial
and other gains.

Despite suffering greater devastation than OTL, post-war events in
Europe may follow a trajectory similar to that of OTL. Although the
Soviet Union won't be a major player, the greater suffering and
inclinations towards domestic radicalisms like Communism might well
propel an alt-Marshall Plan funded by the United States. In this
situation, central Europe won't be excluded: Poland _will_ look like
Italy, Czechoslovakia like Austria, Estonia like Finland, Romania like
Spain. Likewise, there would continue to be an underlying logic for
pan-European integration, though Germany's suitability to be a partner
of France as OTL is open to question. (Perhaps, rather than a
Franco-German economic deal, a Franco-Polish security deal will be the
linchpin of alt-Europe.)

Thoughts?

Later,
Randy
Tony Bailey
2005-02-01 04:40:34 UTC
Permalink
Post by r***@gmail.com
I'd just like to begin this post to affirming that Andrew Reeves and I
did _not_ meet at the Yonge-Wellesley Starbucks in downtown Toronto
this Sunday afternoon just past to talk about affairs
alternate-historical. Never happened.
If you are not going to have a meeting, surely there must be more exciting
places to not be the venue for the non-meeting, or is Toronto that devoid of
Sunday afternoon establishments? (Of course the others may have been frozen
shut.)
--
Tony Bailey
Mercury Travel Books
r***@gmail.com
2005-02-04 01:44:06 UTC
Permalink
If we were not going to have meetings, there would be only a certain
number of places accessible to people on necessarily low budgets.

Later,
Randy
The Horny Goat
2005-02-07 15:58:12 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 1 Feb 2005 15:40:34 +1100, "Tony Bailey"
Post by Tony Bailey
Post by r***@gmail.com
I'd just like to begin this post to affirming that Andrew Reeves and I
did _not_ meet at the Yonge-Wellesley Starbucks in downtown Toronto
this Sunday afternoon just past to talk about affairs
alternate-historical. Never happened.
If you are not going to have a meeting, surely there must be more exciting
places to not be the venue for the non-meeting, or is Toronto that devoid of
Sunday afternoon establishments? (Of course the others may have been frozen
shut.)
More likely most other establishments jammed due to a certain US
sports event involving football...
Giampietro
2005-02-01 16:37:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by r***@gmail.com
I'd just like to begin this post to affirming that Andrew Reeves and I
did _not_ meet at the Yonge-Wellesley Starbucks in downtown Toronto
this Sunday afternoon just past to talk about affairs
alternate-historical. Never happened.
- big snip -

In this
Post by r***@gmail.com
situation, central Europe won't be excluded: Poland _will_ look like
Italy,
This intrigues me. What you mean exactly by that? And what'd have
happened to Italy's fascist régime? Closer to Spain? Or something of
its own kind? Or fascism overthrown?
I am very interested.


See you later,
Giampietro
The Horny Goat
2005-02-07 16:00:40 UTC
Permalink
On Tue, 1 Feb 2005 17:37:32 +0100, "Giampietro"
Post by Giampietro
This intrigues me. What you mean exactly by that? And what'd have
happened to Italy's fascist régime? Closer to Spain? Or something of
its own kind? Or fascism overthrown?
I am very interested.
Yes that IS interesting - I was always a great fan of SPI's Global War
wargame where knocking Italy out of the war is usually MUCH more
difficult than OTL and my usual strategy was to drop the first atomic
bomb on Milan as that ends Italian resistance in near record time.

Then you can engage in your Churchillian fantasy scenario in the
Balkans via Italy and Slovenia...
Noel
2005-02-01 20:17:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by r***@gmail.com
I'd just like to begin this post to affirming that Andrew Reeves and I
did _not_ meet at the Yonge-Wellesley Starbucks in downtown Toronto
this Sunday afternoon just past to talk about affairs
alternate-historical. Never happened.
One thing that never happened was a discussion about the consequences
of a German victory on the Eastern Front against the Soviet Union in
1941-1942. If Leningrad and Moscow fell and the Soviets were driven to
the Urals or beyond (or worse, if the Soviet Union was shattered),
horrid consequences could be expected for the Russian and Ukrainian
populations. Death rates comparable to the one-quarter fatalities among
the Poles seem possible. The situation for minorities singled out for
genocide elsewhere in occupied Europe--particularly though not only the
Jews--and for populations planned to be subjected to colonization would
be fairly grim.
---Question #1: Is such a complete defeat possible?
Rather than present counterarguments, since I know
sadly little, I would like for you (or someone) to
justify the above scenario. My own impression was
that the Soviets had almost endless strategic depth,
and while losing Leningrad and Moscow would be Very
Bad Things, they would by no means knock the USSR
out of the war.
Post by r***@gmail.com
That said, Nazi defeat would become inevitable sometime in the
1945-1946 timeframe once the Americans developed nuclear weapons. The
For All Time scenario of nuclear weapons being treated simply as
larger-than-normal explosive would come to pass, as assembly-line
production of nuclear weapons would allow the Allies to punch holes in
Nazi forces (and German cities, and unlucky occupied territories)
almost at will. Unopposed firebombing raids comparable to those which
devastated the Home Islands would also seem likely.
---Question #2: Do not answer until question #1 is
addressed, please! (Pretty please!) Assuming that
the Red Army is destroyed as a coherent conventional
fighting force, would the Germans necessarily need to
be battered by multiple atomic assaults? The U.S.
still held massive materiel superiority, and stra-
tegic bombing had the wonderful side effect of ty-
ing down lots of the Reich's artillery. In addition,
occupying Eastern Europe (to judge from the Yugoslav
situation in OTL) would require no small number of
troops. It is not entirely clear to me that the
Reich would need to battered by massive atomic
bombardment, as opposed to one or two bombs, as
sufficed to knock Festung Japan out of the war.
Post by r***@gmail.com
Despite suffering greater devastation than OTL, post-war events in
Europe may follow a trajectory similar to that of OTL. Although the
Soviet Union won't be a major player, the greater suffering and
inclinations towards domestic radicalisms like Communism might well
propel an alt-Marshall Plan funded by the United States. In this
situation, central Europe won't be excluded: Poland _will_ look like
Italy, Czechoslovakia like Austria, Estonia like Finland, Romania like
Spain. Likewise, there would continue to be an underlying logic for
pan-European integration, though Germany's suitability to be a
partner
Post by r***@gmail.com
of France as OTL is open to question. (Perhaps, rather than a
Franco-German economic deal, a Franco-Polish security deal will be the
linchpin of alt-Europe.)
---Major Objection #1: When you look at the legis-
lative history of the Marshall Plan, it is almost
impossible to imagine it passing without the Soviet
threat. Now, it is possible that a successful Com-
munist takeover in a major Western European state
might prompt an alt-Marshall Plan, but you would
require mind control lasers to alter the Congress-
ional leadership in the U.S. for there to be large-
scale long-term (emphasis on long term) balance of
payments aid to Western Europe simply out of fear
of a Communist takeover. I am afraid that you
give American leaders entirely too much credit.

Granting, therefore, that the USSR is effectively
destroyed and that it requires multiple atomic bombs
to defeat the Nazis, your optimistic postwar scenario
does not strike me as plausible ... absent a Communist
takeover in, say, France. (I am not sure that Yugo-
slavia, Greece, or Italy would prove sufficiently
alarming in Washington, at least not in 1946-48.)

Rather, some parts of Western Europe will prosper,
but others will go the way of Argentina. One could
then construct multiple believable scenarios, but one
in which Europe replicates its OTL 1950s boom --- sim-
ply extended further east --- does not seem to be one
of them.

Which is not to say that we are living in the best of
all possible worlds --- see the DBTL, or any timeline
where the Nazis fall with the Soviets much further east.

That said, a timeline in which the USSR is "knocked out"
of the war --- presuming that such an event is plausible
--- is one that I would deeply enjoy seeing threshed out
in far greater detail.

Best,

Noel
c***@aol.com
2005-02-02 02:08:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Noel
---Question #1: Is such a complete defeat possible?
Rather than present counterarguments, since I know
sadly little, I would like for you (or someone) to
justify the above scenario. My own impression was
that the Soviets had almost endless strategic depth,
and while losing Leningrad and Moscow would be Very
Bad Things, they would by no means knock the USSR
out of the war.
Well, it's certainly _possible_. Stalin gets shot on 6/22/1941, and
it's the Regency Council of Beria, Molotov, and Voroshilov that handles
the invasion, and who panic. Infighting, contradictory orders to the
troops, General Xov decides that _he_ can stabilize the country and
marches on Moscow, et al. _Someone_ will be in Omsk, or the Urals, or
contemplating throwing himself into Lake Baikal, but the Soviet state
is broken. And then Xov figures out that it was a ruse, but guess who's
shot now?
Post by Noel
---Question #2: Do not answer until question #1 is
addressed, please! (Pretty please!) Assuming that
the Red Army is destroyed as a coherent conventional
fighting force, would the Germans necessarily need to
be battered by multiple atomic assaults? The U.S.
still held massive materiel superiority, and stra-
tegic bombing had the wonderful side effect of ty-
ing down lots of the Reich's artillery. In addition,
occupying Eastern Europe (to judge from the Yugoslav
situation in OTL) would require no small number of
troops. It is not entirely clear to me that the
Reich would need to battered by massive atomic
bombardment, as opposed to one or two bombs, as
sufficed to knock Festung Japan out of the war.
Consider this question: why would it _not_ be necessary? Assuming
*D-Day fails, which it certainly might, given that garrisoning the East
is going to be a hell of a lot cheaper in bodies, than fighting the Red
Army of 1944/45, or the allies can't get to Berlin. Nuremburg goes up,
is it any worse than Dresden? You find that out when they come again
and again. And then there's how _much_ harder it will be to break the
Wermacht/Luftwaffe than it was to break the IJA/IJN.
Post by Noel
---Major Objection #1: When you look at the legis-
lative history of the Marshall Plan,
I agree. Some humanitarian aid is very likely, depending on how messy
the collapse of the Soviets was.
c***@hushmail.com
2005-02-03 16:39:53 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by Noel
---Question #1: Is such a complete defeat possible?
Rather than present counterarguments, since I know
sadly little, I would like for you (or someone) to
justify the above scenario. My own impression was
that the Soviets had almost endless strategic depth,
and while losing Leningrad and Moscow would be Very
Bad Things, they would by no means knock the USSR
out of the war.
Well, it's certainly _possible_. Stalin gets shot on 6/22/1941, and
it's the Regency Council of Beria, Molotov, and Voroshilov that handles
the invasion, and who panic. Infighting, contradictory orders to the
troops, General Xov decides that _he_ can stabilize the country and
marches on Moscow, et al. _Someone_ will be in Omsk, or the Urals, or
contemplating throwing himself into Lake Baikal, but the Soviet state
is broken. And then Xov figures out that it was a ruse, but guess who's
shot now?
Post by Noel
---Question #2: Do not answer until question #1 is
addressed, please! (Pretty please!) Assuming that
the Red Army is destroyed as a coherent conventional
fighting force, would the Germans necessarily need to
be battered by multiple atomic assaults? The U.S.
still held massive materiel superiority,
Precisely how much, once the Germans have chased the Russians to the
Pacific sometime in Spring 1942? Especially if the confusion and moral
collapse were to mean that the Communists do not do a good job at
damaging the factories and railways of the Volga, Ural and Siberia,
which therefore fall in German hands intact and out of range for any
Allied bombers.

and stra-
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by Noel
tegic bombing had the wonderful side effect of ty-
ing down lots of the Reich's artillery.
Conversely, if the Reich has no Eastern Front to tie down artillery,
how effective can strategic bombing be?

In addition,
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by Noel
occupying Eastern Europe (to judge from the Yugoslav
situation in OTL) would require no small number of
troops. It is not entirely clear to me that the
Reich would need to battered by massive atomic
bombardment, as opposed to one or two bombs, as
sufficed to knock Festung Japan out of the war.
Consider this question: why would it _not_ be necessary? Assuming
*D-Day fails, which it certainly might, given that garrisoning the East
is going to be a hell of a lot cheaper in bodies, than fighting the Red
Army of 1944/45, or the allies can't get to Berlin. Nuremburg goes up,
is it any worse than Dresden? You find that out when they come again
and again. And then there's how _much_ harder it will be to break the
Wermacht/Luftwaffe than it was to break the IJA/IJN.
But would the Luftwaffe be broken at all in this case?

Would USA still win the conventional war by 1945 if USSR were to
collapse 1941-1942?

And if the US have nuclear bombs by 1945-1946, but do NOT have the air
superiority that they had in OTL over Japan, how effective would it be?
That is, some nukes get through, but most are shot down by still
effective Axis air forces. What would the effects be?
c***@aol.com
2005-02-03 21:00:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Post by Noel
---Question #2: Do not answer until question #1 is
addressed, please! (Pretty please!) Assuming that
the Red Army is destroyed as a coherent conventional
fighting force, would the Germans necessarily need to
be battered by multiple atomic assaults? The U.S.
still held massive materiel superiority,
Precisely how much, once the Germans have chased the Russians to the
Pacific sometime in Spring 1942?
How exactly do they do that? Hell, I'm not sure the Wehrmacht could
have successfully marched from one end of the USSR to the other in a
year, much less against resistance of varying degrees of stiffness.

Especially if the confusion and moral
Post by c***@hushmail.com
collapse were to mean that the Communists do not do a good job at
damaging the factories and railways of the Volga, Ural and Siberia,
which therefore fall in German hands intact and out of range for any
Allied bombers.
...You're making several gigantic assumptions. Why are the factories
intact? Where do they get the manpower, the raw materials? OK, so they
use slave labor. Who guards them, who organizes them? And if they're
putting in the manpower to keep the rails running in the _Urals_...why
is there even a Wehrmacht in the West at all?
Post by c***@hushmail.com
and stra-
Post by Noel
tegic bombing had the wonderful side effect of ty-
ing down lots of the Reich's artillery.
Conversely, if the Reich has no Eastern Front to tie down artillery,
how effective can strategic bombing be?
US production v. German production=US wins.
Post by c***@hushmail.com
But would the Luftwaffe be broken at all in this case?
US production.
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Would USA still win the conventional war by 1945 if USSR were to
collapse 1941-1942?
The nukes do the job.
Post by c***@hushmail.com
And if the US have nuclear bombs by 1945-1946, but do NOT have the air
superiority that they had in OTL over Japan, how effective would it be?
That is, some nukes get through, but most are shot down by still
effective Axis air forces. What would the effects be?
It won't take that long to pound the Luftwaffe to rubble. Really. Bases
in North Africa, bases in southern Italy...hell, bases in Russia. Not
that it won't be unspeakably bloody. And most bombers weren't actually
shot down by the Luftwaffe, why should they happen to get the ones with
nukes on board? Especially after the US has one coming out every few
months.
c***@hushmail.com
2005-02-04 16:06:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Post by Noel
---Question #2: Do not answer until question #1 is
addressed, please! (Pretty please!) Assuming that
the Red Army is destroyed as a coherent conventional
fighting force, would the Germans necessarily need to
be battered by multiple atomic assaults? The U.S.
still held massive materiel superiority,
Precisely how much, once the Germans have chased the Russians to the
Pacific sometime in Spring 1942?
How exactly do they do that? Hell, I'm not sure the Wehrmacht could
have successfully marched from one end of the USSR to the other in a
year, much less against resistance of varying degrees of stiffness.
The Red Army had been pretty fast in 1919-1920, once the will of the
Whites had been broken. They did slow down behind Baikal specifically
to avoid conflict with Japan. The Germans might be racing to meet the
Japanese marching to meeting from Manchuria, so they could get a trade
route to their ally up and running.

And the Wehrmacht of 1941-42 would have had somewhat more automobiles
driven along or captured from enemies than the Red Army of 1918-1922.
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Especially if the confusion and moral collapse were to mean that
the
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Communists do not do a good job at damaging the factories and
railways > > of the Volga, Ural and Siberia, which therefore fall in
German hands
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
intact and out of range for any Allied bombers.
...You're making several gigantic assumptions. Why are the factories
intact?
How well had the Whites done harming the factories in 1918-1919? There
was some damage, but how much?
Post by c***@aol.com
Where do they get the manpower, the raw materials? OK, so they
use slave labor. Who guards them, who organizes them? And if they're
putting in the manpower to keep the rails running in the
_Urals_...why
Post by c***@aol.com
is there even a Wehrmacht in the West at all?
Yes, they do need some trusted army units to guard and organize. But it
is not a clearly implausible possibility that occupying the whole
Russia in ATL might need significantly less manpower and materiel than
fighting Russia did in OTL - and cause very much less losses of either.
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Post by Noel
and strategic bombing had the wonderful side effect of tying
down > > > > lots of the Reich's artillery.
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Conversely, if the Reich has no Eastern Front to tie down
artillery,
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
how effective can strategic bombing be?
US production v. German production=US wins.
How fast? In OTL, it took over 3 years.
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
But would the Luftwaffe be broken at all in this case?
US production.
How fast?
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Would USA still win the conventional war by 1945 if USSR were to
collapse 1941-1942?
The nukes do the job.
How far are the conventional forces by then?
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
And if the US have nuclear bombs by 1945-1946, but do NOT have the
air superiority that they had in OTL over Japan, how effective
would
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
it be?
That is, some nukes get through, but most are shot down by still
effective Axis air forces. What would the effects be?
It won't take that long to pound the Luftwaffe to rubble.
It took until 1945 in OTL.
Post by c***@aol.com
Really. Bases in North Africa, bases in southern Italy...hell, bases
in > Russia.

Start with returning to the assumption, a plausible one, that there are
NO bases in Russia at least in late 1942.

Next, you accepted that removing the Easter Front can plausibly thwart
the D-Day in 1944. Indeed: in OTL, Germany had been fighting a losing
battle with Russia since December 1941, and it had taken 2 and half
years before D-day could be attempted. Remove the Eastern front, and
the D-day in infeasible much longer.

What about southern Italy and North Africa? Remove the Eastern Front
1941-1942. In Spring, 1942, huge reserves of manpower become available,
and some of them go reinforce Rommel in North Africa. Also the Germans
chase Russians through Caucasus to Iran - Iran was occupied by Allies,
but I think the armies there were't huge - and on to Near East. They
did have those plans in OTL, but did not get far enough. Egypt and Suez
Canal fall to Rommel sweeping in from west or to those comong through
Iraq. The Germans make forced landings on Malta and Gibraltar, as they
planned.

There are going to be no Allied bases in southern Italia unless they
have taken North Africa. And with the Germans having a plenty of forces
to hold North Africa, can the US make a successful landing in North
Africa in Autumn 1942, as in OTL? If no, when? How far would they have
been by 1945?
Post by c***@aol.com
Not
that it won't be unspeakably bloody. And most bombers weren't
actually
Post by c***@aol.com
shot down by the Luftwaffe, why should they happen to get the ones with
nukes on board? Especially after the US has one coming out every few
months.
Compare with Japan. US could engage in nuking and conventional
firebombing Japan after they had reached and taken the Marianas by
conventional means - and it had taken them 2 years to get from Solomons
to Marianas. USAF did bomb Tokyo in April 1942 - but this was a suicide
mission, for US did not have bases near enough to reach Japan and back.
What would US have done if they had had nukes but they could be
delivered only by suicide missions like those of April 1942?
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-04 17:11:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@hushmail.com
What about southern Italy and North Africa? Remove the Eastern Front
1941-1942. In Spring, 1942, huge reserves of manpower become
available,
Post by c***@hushmail.com
and some of them go reinforce Rommel in North Africa.
Um. OTL Hitler pushed 300,000 troops into North Africa to reinforce
Rommel in late '42 and '43.

Result: 300,000 more troops captured by the Allies.

The problem in North Africa was logistics. Victory on the Eastern
Front wouldn't give Germany more ships to move stuff to Africa, nor to
supply troops once they are there.
Post by c***@hushmail.com
the Germans
chase Russians through Caucasus to Iran - Iran was occupied by
Allies,
Post by c***@hushmail.com
but I think the armies there were't huge - and on to Near East.
This has been discussed on this NG before. The consensus is that here,
too, rather severe logistical issues would constrain German efforts in
this theater. As in, they'd be doing very well if they could get a
couple of infantry divisions deployed through the Caucasus. Armored
divisions, forget about it.

By late 1942, Allied Paiforce in Persia/Iraq consisted of seven
infantry divisions, one armored division and two armored brigades.

So, "on to Near East" does not necessarily follow.


Doug M.
1oki
2005-02-04 17:19:57 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
What about southern Italy and North Africa? Remove the Eastern Front
1941-1942. In Spring, 1942, huge reserves of manpower become
available,
and some of them go reinforce Rommel in North Africa.
Um. OTL Hitler pushed 300,000 troops into North Africa to reinforce
Rommel in late '42 and '43.
Result: 300,000 more troops captured by the Allies.
The problem in North Africa was logistics. Victory on the Eastern
Front wouldn't give Germany more ships to move stuff to Africa, nor to
supply troops once they are there.
What effect would, not troops, but much of the airpower that was desiganted
for the East, goes South? What-if that airpower is used to ensure that more
of the needed supplies did make it across the Med?
--
'A people's voice is dangerous
when charged with wrath' -Aeschylus
Athos
2005-02-04 21:24:31 UTC
Permalink
Post by 1oki
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
What about southern Italy and North Africa? Remove the Eastern Front
1941-1942. In Spring, 1942, huge reserves of manpower become available,
and some of them go reinforce Rommel in North Africa.
Um. OTL Hitler pushed 300,000 troops into North Africa to
reinforce
Post by 1oki
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Rommel in late '42 and '43.
Result: 300,000 more troops captured by the Allies.
The problem in North Africa was logistics. Victory on the Eastern
Front wouldn't give Germany more ships to move stuff to Africa, nor to
supply troops once they are there.
What effect would, not troops, but much of the airpower that was desiganted
for the East, goes South? What-if that airpower is used to ensure that more
of the needed supplies did make it across the Med?
First, a number of people around here feel that the biggest factor
limiting Axis supplies to North Africa was lack of port facilities.

Even if Axis air power is so strong that the Torch landings can't
happen all the aircraft that were going to Britain to build up the 8th
Air Force will now be going to Egypt.

The net result will be a huge air war over the Med, an air war that the
Axis will, in the long run, lose.

By June 1942 the war in the Pacific has turned in favor of the Allies.
The US could have put more naval forces into Europe and North Africa in
OTL.

This would allow the Allies to counter the increase in German aircraft
and take control of the Med. It might take till 1944 but it will
happen.

Germany can't take the Soviet Union in 1941, it's simply to big. Maybe
in 1942 they take Leningrad and Stalingrad and push toward the Urals,
Murmansk and the Caucasus.

Now it's 1943 and US troops start to be available in real numbers.
What options are available to the Allies?

They can clean up North Africa and the Med. Maybe they land in
Sardinia, Corsica and Crete, saving Sicily till early 1944.

Maybe the US moves a carrier battle group or two into the North Sea and
the Allies land in Northern Norway. Any large scale German
reinforcements have to come by sea up the coast. A coast controled by
the Allies. This allows the Allies to greatly increase supplies going
to Murmansk and possibly land troops to back up what ever Soviet forces
are left there.

By summer of 1945 with the A-Bomb the question becomes academic but the
point is that there are things the Brits and the US can do even
conventionally.

Pete
1oki
2005-02-04 22:12:08 UTC
Permalink
Post by Athos
Post by 1oki
What effect would, not troops, but much of the airpower that was
desiganted for the East, goes South? What-if that airpower is used to
ensure
that more of the needed supplies did make it across the Med?
First, a number of people around here feel that the biggest factor
limiting Axis supplies to North Africa was lack of port facilities.
I hadn't heard that. How close to capacity were Axis port facilities? My
instinct is that - ceteris paribus - if the attrtion rate due to Allied
losses is less, then supplies for Rommel will be greater - especially if the
ports in question are spared capacity losses thanks to the increased air
patrol of a stronger air force.
Post by Athos
Even if Axis air power is so strong that the Torch landings can't
happen all the aircraft that were going to Britain to build up the 8th
Air Force will now be going to Egypt.
I wasn't thinking so much in terms of Torch nor sugesting that it would
turn the course of the war - Just that absent the allocation of air assets,
alone, for the Eastern Front; if deployed to secure Rommel's supply lines it
would have been an unambiguous plus for the Axis and made gains in Africa
greater than they were in our TL.
Post by Athos
The net result will be a huge air war over the Med, an air war that the
Axis will, in the long run, lose.
Agreed.
--
'The blade itself incites to violence'
-Homer
a***@pacific.net.au
2005-02-05 00:08:34 UTC
Permalink
Post by 1oki
Post by Athos
Post by 1oki
What effect would, not troops, but much of the airpower that was
desiganted for the East, goes South? What-if that airpower is used to
ensure
that more of the needed supplies did make it across the Med?
First, a number of people around here feel that the biggest factor
limiting Axis supplies to North Africa was lack of port facilities.
I hadn't heard that. How close to capacity were Axis port facilities? My
Read Van Creveld's "Supplying War" and Thompson's "Lifeblood of War",
two excellent books on historical military logistics, both of which
have chapters on the North African campaign.
Post by 1oki
instinct is that - ceteris paribus - if the attrtion rate due to Allied
losses is less, then supplies for Rommel will be greater - especially if the
ports in question are spared capacity losses thanks to the increased air
patrol of a stronger air force.
The ports in question were at full capacity. They were, in fact,
*beyond* full capacity.

They did not have enough wharf space and dockyard equipment to unload
more than a very limited number of ships at any give time ...

"... this was Tripoli, the largest Libyan harbour by far, capable of
handling - UNDER IDEAL CONDITIONS - FIVE CARGO SHIPS *O*R* FOUR TROOP
TRANSPORTS simultaneously. Its capacity, as long as no unforseen
explosion wrecked the quays, and the largely local labour force was
not driven off by air-raids, amounted to approximately 45,000 tons per
month ... "

- Van Creveld, pg. 184

"Together with the Italians, the Axis force in Libya now totalled
seven divisions which, when airforce and naval units were added,
required 70,000 tons [of supplies] per month. This was more than
Tripoli could handle ..."

- Van Creveld, pg. 185

Ceterus paribus has nothing to do with the facts on the ground.

However you work it, *at the supplyhead* (Tripoli), the Axis were
short 25000 tons, minimum, compared to what they needed. For two
German mech/motor and 5 Italian divisions plus air and naval assets.

But it gets worse. This assumed that the Axis forces would not operate
further than 300 miles *from* Tripoli.

A cursory glance at any map will reveal how short a distance this is,
and how little even of Italian North Africa was covered by it.

Beyond 300 miles and the supply convoys progressively eat up more
supplies than they can actually deliver ... worsening the supply
situation massively.

And, sadly, no, the Axis didn't have the capacity to expand the port
of Tripoli in any realistic timeframe before the campaign was
(historically) over.

And, no, they couldn't supply the forces forward by coastal shipping
either ... see note above about how big (and yet still grossly
inadequate) Tripoli was *as the biggest port in Italian North Africa*
and, in any case, per Van Creveld, the Axis didn't at any time have
enough coastal lighterage to move what little amount of supplies the
ports could handle anyway.

So, yes, port capacity was the insurmountable problem.

Phil

Author, Space Opera (FGU), RBB #1 (FASA), Road to Armageddon (PGD).
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Email: ***@pacific.net.au
david
2005-02-05 05:16:10 UTC
Permalink
Post by 1oki
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
What about southern Italy and North Africa? Remove the Eastern Front
1941-1942. In Spring, 1942, huge reserves of manpower become available,
and some of them go reinforce Rommel in North Africa.
Um. OTL Hitler pushed 300,000 troops into North Africa to reinforce
Rommel in late '42 and '43.
Result: 300,000 more troops captured by the Allies.
The problem in North Africa was logistics. Victory on the Eastern
Front wouldn't give Germany more ships to move stuff to Africa, nor to
supply troops once they are there.
What effect would, not troops, but much of the airpower that was desiganted
for the East, goes South? What-if that airpower is used to ensure that more
of the needed supplies did make it across the Med?
The trouble is that the Germans have numerous bottlenecks to getting
supplies to the front-line troops in North Africa.

Firstly, there is a shortage of supplies in the first place. If one
eliminates the Eastern Front, this bottleneck is improved.

Secondly, there is a shortage of shipping to carry the stuff across the
Med. Much of the shipping transport had been lost the day Italy entered
the war, and what remained was hampered by numerous shortages (supplies,
sailors, ships). If we say that airpower is used to reduce shipping
losses across the Med, then the worsening of this particular bottleneck
is delayed (OTL, there were periods when 67% of shipping was being sunk.
This is not sustainable). However, the bottleneck remains, and all we
have done is prevent a bad situation from getting worse.

Thirdly, one has to unload the stuff in North Africa. Here we have a
major problem. The ports in North Africa were operating at full
capacity. Short of a major building programme to extend and improve port
facilities, there is stuff all that one can do to affect this particular
bottleneck.

Fourthly, one has to get the unloaded stuff from the ports to the front
line. Here we have a major problem. The logistical train consists of
lots of trucks running along a second-rate sand-swept road. I
understand, for example, that 90% of the fuel along the route was used
in getting the remaining 10% to the front. Regardless of how many trucks
one stuffs on this crumbling road (and note that the more trucks one
uses, the faster the road crumbles, and your front-line troops become
known technically as PoWs if that road becomes impassable for any length
of time), that percentage will remain the same, and increasing the
number of forces at the front line will place a major drain on a supply
already in short supply - oil. This will impact the ability of Germany
to make such things as aviation fuel, and shipping fuel. Under these
circumstances, any strategic bombing campaign against Germany will find
their job a little easier by more severe limitations on the Luftwaffe.
The road in question was very vulnerable to sweeps by the RAF and RN,
and preventing these will be an entertaining task for the German air
force, which is now having to provide air cover both across the Med, and
along the whole length of a road stretching from Libya to the front
line.

Fifthly, and perhaps most significantly, there is the problem that the
chap in charge of the German forces in North Africa, one Rommel, was
quite openly dismissive of logistical issues, regarding logistics as
something for quartermasters to worry about, and that generals shouldn't
worry about. When the chap at the top doesn't care about logistics, then
logistics are always going to be a problem. The best thing that the
Luftwaffe could do to improve the German situation in North Africa would
be to shot up some jeeps, only to discover later that Rommel had been in
some captured jeeps viewing the front. I'm not sure what a General who
took an interest in logistics could have done about improving the
situation, but that would be the first requirement.
--
David Flin
a***@pacific.net.au
2005-02-06 07:10:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by david
logistics are always going to be a problem. The best thing that the
Luftwaffe could do to improve the German situation in North Africa would
be to shot up some jeeps, only to discover later that Rommel had been in
some captured jeeps viewing the front. I'm not sure what a General who
took an interest in logistics could have done about improving the
situation, but that would be the first requirement.
Thats an interesting proposition. One of the orders Rommel was given,
and ignored, was to NOT move his forces more than (IIRC) 600 klicks
(or maybe it was 600 miles) from Tripli in *any* sort of operations.

Considering that, in 1941, the British were not in the more
advantageous logistical position they were in 1942 and later, it is
interesting to consider what would have happened if Rommel had simply
obeyed his orders and sat and *waited* for the British.

I am sure the Brits would have obliged by attacking ...

And I suspect they would have their heads (and, perhaps, other
portions of their anatomy much closer to the ground) handed to them by
Rommel.

Assume, again, that Rommel shows a willingness to follow orders, and
simply pursues the broken remnants far enough to ensure that all that
escape *are* broken remnants ... how many times do other readers thing
that the Brits would be taken down before they were in a position to
actually *win*?

Would the war in North Africa actually be extended, under such
circumstances, or do you think it would run more or less to schedule,
as far as the end date is concerned?

I tend to think that the overall delay to an allied victory would be
minimal, but allied losses would be higher and axis losses probably
lower.

Thoughts, anyone.

Phil

Author, Space Opera (FGU), RBB #1 (FASA), Road to Armageddon (PGD).
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Email: ***@pacific.net.au
c***@hushmail.com
2005-02-08 17:50:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
What about southern Italy and North Africa? Remove the Eastern Front
1941-1942. In Spring, 1942, huge reserves of manpower become
available,
Post by c***@hushmail.com
and some of them go reinforce Rommel in North Africa.
Um. OTL Hitler pushed 300,000 troops into North Africa to reinforce
Rommel in late '42 and '43.
Result: 300,000 more troops captured by the Allies.
The problem in North Africa was logistics. Victory on the Eastern
Front wouldn't give Germany more ships to move stuff to Africa, nor to
supply troops once they are there.
Not much, and not fast, at least. They might get a few ships if the
Soviets are too demoralized by the time Germans reach Georgia to sink
their Black Sea fleets, or they might not. Spare manpower might speed
up shipbuilding, but the effect would be slow. Constraints would still
be there.

Rommel in OTL made one fast dash in January 1942 and another in
May-July. The second time, he was stopped at Alamein.

If he had been a bit more successful in either time, might he have
swept through to Alexandria? Ships would still be short, but
limitations of port capacity would have been gone, and the limits of
long desert road.

If Rommel had seized Cairo and Suez Canal in either July 1942 or
January 1942, how would the Allies have gone about dislodging him?
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
the Germans chase Russians through Caucasus to Iran - Iran was
occupied by
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Allies, but I think the armies there were't huge - and on to Near
East.
Post by c***@hushmail.com
This has been discussed on this NG before. The consensus is that here,
too, rather severe logistical issues would constrain German efforts in
this theater. As in, they'd be doing very well if they could get a
couple of infantry divisions deployed through the Caucasus. Armored
divisions, forget about it.
By late 1942, Allied Paiforce in Persia/Iraq consisted of seven
infantry divisions, one armored division and two armored brigades.
How much forces did Russia get there in August 1941? Despite limited
infrastructure, mountains and existence of Iran's army, they swept
through in a few days!
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-08 20:45:53 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@hushmail.com
If he had been a bit more successful in either time, might he have
swept through to Alexandria? Ships would still be short, but
limitations of port capacity would have been gone,
Port capacity only helps if there are ships to bring your stuff to the
port in question. The Axis just didn't have enough ships. (And that's
ignoring Allied responses. Tobruk was known as the "graveyard of the
Italian Merchant Marine" for a reason. Rommel's logistics got steadily
worse all through 1941 and 1942, and taking Tobruk didn't really help
much.)
Post by c***@hushmail.com
If Rommel had seized Cairo and Suez Canal in either July 1942 or
January 1942, how would the Allies have gone about dislodging him?
Separate question. It would have been a PITA to dislodge him. But
that doesn't mean he could easily have moved on and Swept Through The
Middle East! (tm)

Note that the "long desert road" problem gets worse, not better, once
you start heading west through the Suez.
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
By late 1942, Allied Paiforce in Persia/Iraq consisted of seven
infantry divisions, one armored division and two armored brigades.
How much forces did Russia get there in August 1941? Despite limited
infrastructure, mountains and existence of Iran's army, they swept
through in a few days!
Well, they did have an entire army sitting just across the border. Had
since 1933. And the complete absence of armed opposition didn't hurt.


Doug M.
Jesse Meyer
2005-02-04 18:04:25 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@hushmail.com
There are going to be no Allied bases in southern Italia unless they
have taken North Africa. And with the Germans having a plenty of forces
to hold North Africa, can the US make a successful landing in North
Africa in Autumn 1942, as in OTL? If no, when? How far would they have
been by 1945?
I don't have the reference to dig up, but assuming we have a
Manhatten project similar to the OTL: By the end of 1945,
we were predicting 7 bombs by December 1945, then a production
rate of 3 a month.

Unless the fall of the USSR butterflies a better German bomb
program into existance (I don't see it happening) Europe
gets repeatedly nuked.

Here's my question: How much does this matter?

In the OTL, conventional bombings thoroughly destroyed cities
during WWII. The advantage of nuclear weapons was it only took
one bomb, but the effect was the same.

Lets follow your assumption that by 1945, the NAZIs control large
chunks of Europe, Russia, the Middle East, and North Africa.

August rolls around, and its now two cities in Europe that go nuclear,
what happens?

(If I remember my Japanese history correctly, there was already a
faction in Japan pushing for surrender. The other faction wanted
one big last fight (to better negotiate peace afterwords). Hiroshima
and Nagasaki was enough to tip the decision towards immediate surrender.
Is Hitler in 1945 going to surrender as quickly? It doesn't seem so.)
--
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine. However, this is
not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they
are going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them
as they fly overhead. -- RFC 1925
Oliver Neukum
2005-02-04 21:23:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jesse Meyer
I don't have the reference to dig up, but assuming we have a
Manhatten project similar to the OTL:  By the end of 1945,
we were predicting 7 bombs by December 1945, then a production
rate of 3 a month.
What has happened in between?
There is no way Germany keeps sitting on its ass giving the
US 2 years building up and not thinking about ways to break
Britain at least.

Regards
Oliver
Athos
2005-02-04 21:48:15 UTC
Permalink
Post by Oliver Neukum
Post by Jesse Meyer
I don't have the reference to dig up, but assuming we have a
Manhatten project similar to the OTL: By the end of 1945,
we were predicting 7 bombs by December 1945, then a production
rate of 3 a month.
What has happened in between?
There is no way Germany keeps sitting on its ass giving the
US 2 years building up and not thinking about ways to break
Britain at least.
That's just the problem. What can Germany do once the US is in the
war?

The Channel is the problem. The Germans will try and do everything the
French did under Napoleon. They will try to isolate Britain cut off
her trade build a military that can somehow invade and they will fail.

They can try and build more subs and train more crews but they won't be
able to outbuild the Allies. They could try to build better subs but
the Allies anti-sub tech will get better too.

About 75% of all U-boats build were sunk during the war. If the
Germans can cut that number down to 50% the U-boat force is still
suffering cripling losses.

They lost the Battle of Britain in 1940 when they were only fighting
the RAF. What chance do they have once USAAF squadrons start to arrive
in Britain.

The Germans could try and use the extra resources to build more V-1
style weapons but if the skys of the Reich are really closed to Allied
bombers then the Allies might turn to V-1 style weapons. How many V-1
type weapons could the US be dropping in Europe by early 1945?

Pete
Oliver Neukum
2005-02-05 16:08:53 UTC
Permalink
Post by Athos
About 75% of all U-boats build were sunk during the war. If the
Germans can cut that number down to 50% the U-boat force is still
suffering cripling losses.
It would be tried. The spare production capacity would go somewhere.
Post by Athos
They lost the Battle of Britain in 1940 when they were only fighting
the RAF. What chance do they have once USAAF squadrons start to arrive
in Britain.
The Germans could try and use the extra resources to build more V-1
style weapons but if the skys of the Reich are really closed to Allied
bombers then the Allies might turn to V-1 style weapons. How many V-1
type weapons could the US be dropping in Europe by early 1945?
Are they useful to the allies? The industrial centers of Berlin and Silesia
are further from the British Isles than London from the V1 bases.

The obvious answers are
a) submarines
b) strategic bombing
c) North Africa

But something non obvious will be tried as well. Secondly there's the
question of morale. How big a blow is the fall of the SU?

Regards
Oliver
pyotr filipivich
2005-02-09 19:54:27 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Post by Noel
---Question #2: Do not answer until question #1 is
addressed, please! (Pretty please!) Assuming that
the Red Army is destroyed as a coherent conventional
fighting force, would the Germans necessarily need to
be battered by multiple atomic assaults? The U.S.
still held massive materiel superiority,
Precisely how much, once the Germans have chased the Russians to the
Pacific sometime in Spring 1942?
How exactly do they do that? Hell, I'm not sure the Wehrmacht could
have successfully marched from one end of the USSR to the other in a
year, much less against resistance of varying degrees of stiffness.
If memory serves, The Plan was to reduce the Soviet Union to a rump
State east of the Urals, incorporate the industrial parts of Western Soviet
Union under new management, and parcel out farmland to German Farmers.
The Russians were not going to be getting any _known_resources, except
for trees and the like, which All Good Aryans knew, was about the limit of
Untermensch Slavs capacity to understand and handle.

--
pyotr filipivich
When I was a boy, we had Outcome Based Education, too.
We called it "Being held back a year"
The Horny Goat
2005-02-07 16:08:31 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@hushmail.com
Post by c***@aol.com
is it any worse than Dresden? You find that out when they come again
and again. And then there's how _much_ harder it will be to break the
Wermacht/Luftwaffe than it was to break the IJA/IJN.
But would the Luftwaffe be broken at all in this case?
Would USA still win the conventional war by 1945 if USSR were to
collapse 1941-1942?
And if the US have nuclear bombs by 1945-1946, but do NOT have the air
superiority that they had in OTL over Japan, how effective would it be?
That is, some nukes get through, but most are shot down by still
effective Axis air forces. What would the effects be?
Why would you assume the Allied air forces would be less potent than
in OTL? By June 1944 the Luftwaffe was essentially not operating in
Normandy - that was one of THE main reasons the D-Day assaults were so
successful (or more accurately the period from D+6 to D+21). I'll
grant you a stronger armored force in the west in this scenario but
between the Luftwaffe forces in the west and over Germany proper OTL,
Allied air supremacy was such that giving the Germans the equivalent
of say 75% of OTL's share of the Luftwaffe in the east would not have
turned the tide. So far as I know, German anti-aircraft artillery in
the east was pretty much non-existent by 1944 with most of it being
reserved for the homeland.

I'd argue that OTL's 1944 Allied air supremacy would have taken longer
to achieve in this TL but by October 1944 _would_ have been achieved -
and that's the earliest I can envision the atomic bomb being
available. By 1945-46 I don't see German Luftwaffe "wonder weapons"
turning the tide even if they have Caucasian fuel available to them.
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-07 16:40:43 UTC
Permalink
The Horny Goat wrote:

[snip points on air superiority, with which I agree]
Post by The Horny Goat
By 1945-46 I don't see German Luftwaffe "wonder weapons"
turning the tide even if they have Caucasian fuel available to them.
Given the scenario outlined above -- German victory over Russia in
early '43 -- there won't be more than a very modest trickle of
Caucasian oil reaching Germany by '45.

The wells themselves would be trashed -- cf. the Japanese experience in
Indochina; also the German experience in Romania, 1916-18, and then
again in 1944 -- and then, no pipelines going anywhere useful.

Least-bad strategy would probably be to get it over the mountains to
the Black Sea coast (how?) then ship across to Romania and up the
Danube. (The Romanian oil went from Ploeisti to the Danube by
pipeline, so the route already existed.)

But getting it over those mountains... nnh. There's no rail line, and
the roads were, um, not so great. Putting aside that Germany didn't
have a lot of tanker trucks ready to go. -- Really, Caucasian oil is
right up there with Sea Lion AFAICT. Doesn't stop people from talking
about it.



But look: the point of this thread was to discuss the POSTWAR world.
We're only discussing the war to set the stage. If you really want to
go there, why not spin off another thread?

Meanwhile, would anyone else like to speculate about how -- say --
early anticolonialism works in this world without the USSR, 1946-60?
Does Indian Partition still go off just as iOTL? What about Indonesia
and French Indochina?

Or what the Middle East looks like in a world where the Holocaust has
run almost to completion? Is there an Israel at all? If not, then
what?

Or whether it's plausible that the US might slide back into isolation
without a Soviet challenge?

Or the effect of another 8 months of European war on postwar
technological developments? Rocketry? Jets? Electronics?

Or what the *UN looks like, if there even is one? (Might it be
/stronger/?) The World Bank and other international financial
institutions?

Come on, guys. Leave the Fuhrer in his bunker for now. He'll be there
when we need him.


Doug M.
c***@aol.com
2005-02-07 19:47:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Meanwhile, would anyone else like to speculate about how -- say --
early anticolonialism works in this world without the USSR, 1946-60?
Does Indian Partition still go off just as iOTL?
I will say, with very little knowledge of the subject, hellaciously
yes! I don't think that Moscow had much to do with making Partition
happen, and the US still probably won't care/have the manpower for it.
And the British will be poor.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
What about Indonesia
and French Indochina?
No! But there'll still be local Communists, not to mention how damned
weak the Dutch and French are in this scenario after extra Nazi
occupation and possible use of nuclear warheads on their soil. So
Indonesia still goes free, and Indochina...hell, might wind up one big
Communist state, just like in FaT. (Go me!)
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Or what the Middle East looks like in a world where the Holocaust has
run almost to completion? Is there an Israel at all? If not, then
what?
There'll be...something, that's for sure. Something like Carlos' Hotel
Palestine? Where there's a big Jewish population, but not enough to
offend the delicate sensibilites of their Arab neighbors.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Or whether it's plausible that the US might slide back into isolation
without a Soviet challenge?
I think this is the most likely, at least at first. Dewey in '44, some
Democrat in '48. The Mediterranean regimes would have to be plenty bad
to justify the US keeping their nose in anywhere but in Germany. It is
possible that a lack of US paranoia about them gives us a lot of Titos
down there with consequences I do not know.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Or the effect of another 8 months of European war on postwar
technological developments? Rocketry? Jets? Electronics?
Rocketry. Hm. Certainly more. Maybe the A-10 actually comes off. (Hey,
another thing from FaT, kinda. Go me!) But then after the war, who does
the developing? And why? Sheer prestige will only take the US so far,
after all. Maybe space waits until there is a fanboy in the White
House, like Agnew.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Or what the *UN looks like, if there even is one? (Might it be
/stronger/?) The World Bank and other international financial
institutions?
I think there'll be a UN, but I think it might even be weaker. Atoms
for Peace might go off even better, not to mention the Baruch Plan.
tzintzuntzan
2005-02-07 22:59:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Meanwhile, would anyone else like to speculate about how -- say --
early anticolonialism works in this world without the USSR,
1946-60?
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Does Indian Partition still go off just as iOTL?
I will say, with very little knowledge of the subject, hellaciously
yes! I don't think that Moscow had much to do with making Partition
happen, and the US still probably won't care/have the manpower for it.
And the British will be poor.
I'd say Indian independence will be coming soon for the reasons
you describe, but whether it takes the form of Partition is
still up in the air. OTL Partition owes a lot to the amazing
quirks of Mountbatten, who could easily be posted elsewhere
in the ATL.

(snip)
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Or what the Middle East looks like in a world where the Holocaust has
run almost to completion? Is there an Israel at all? If not, then
what?
There'll be...something, that's for sure. Something like Carlos' Hotel
Palestine? Where there's a big Jewish population, but not enough to
offend the delicate sensibilites of their Arab neighbors.
The reduced immigration probably means there's no Israel IMHO --
but there's still an armed Haganah (which has already attacked,
and been attaked by, Arabs several times before the POD). Looks
like ingredients for a Lebanon scenario.
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Or whether it's plausible that the US might slide back into
isolation
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
without a Soviet challenge?
I think this is the most likely, at least at first. Dewey in '44, some
Democrat in '48. The Mediterranean regimes would have to be plenty bad
to justify the US keeping their nose in anywhere but in Germany. It is
possible that a lack of US paranoia about them gives us a lot of Titos
down there with consequences I do not know.
Wouldn't good old-fashioned fear of Reds be enough to keep
some feelers out? Even if the Soviets have been totally
stomped in the war, there will be paranoia as long as the
postwar Russian government is explicitly Communist. (Which
may not be the case.)
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Or what the *UN looks like, if there even is one? (Might it be
/stronger/?) The World Bank and other international financial
institutions?
Doug would know more about the Bretton Woods organizations than
me, but a guess: why wouldn't FDR create them in the ATL? Their
OTL purpose was to prevent a replay of the Depression and thus
of World Wars; that would seem even more critical in the ATL.
The UN, I think, wouldn't get off the ground in remotely
recognizable form, since a lot of it was based on working
out co-operation between US and USSR. In the ATL, the
rump Russia is not such a Great Power.
Noel
2005-02-08 00:40:58 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Meanwhile, would anyone else like to speculate about how -- say --
early anticolonialism works in this world without the USSR,
1946-60?
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Does Indian Partition still go off just as iOTL?
I will say, with very little knowledge of the subject, hellaciously
yes! I don't think that Moscow had much to do with making Partition
happen, and the US still probably won't care/have the manpower for
it.
Post by c***@aol.com
And the British will be poor.
I'd say Indian independence will be coming soon for the reasons
you describe, but whether it takes the form of Partition is
still up in the air. OTL Partition owes a lot to the amazing
quirks of Mountbatten, who could easily be posted elsewhere
in the ATL.
---In the interests of coherence, allow me to
make a suggestion: if an event is not a direct
knock-on of POD, assume it comes off as in OTL.

Otherwise, the mass of possible butterflies will
make collaborative thinking about outcomes impos-
sible.

Of course, once you get a decade or so out, the
distinction disappears. But it's a useful one to
hold for now. So, unless you think that Mountbat-
ten's reposting is an ineluctable knock-on of a
prolonged WW2, let's assume independence with
Partition for the purposes of further discussion.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Or what the *UN looks like, if there even is one? (Might it be
/stronger/?) The World Bank and other international financial
institutions?
Doug would know more about the Bretton Woods organizations than
me, but a guess: why wouldn't FDR create them in the ATL? Their
OTL purpose was to prevent a replay of the Depression and thus
of World Wars; that would seem even more critical in the ATL.
---I'm thinking about this, but have too much work
right now to go into detail. Hopefully Doug has some
ideas. But here's my thinking, briefly.

Y'all too damn Americocentric. Betcha that's something
you never expected to hear! But in this case it's true.

Bretton Woods would almost certainly take place, but
without the large and continuing balance of payments
support that the U.S. provided Western Europe through-
out the 1940s, it isn't at all clear that it would
have survived long.

Consider 1947 from the point of view of a European
politico in the absence of a Marshall Plan. You're
facing balance of payments problems. What can you
do? Well, you can try foreign borrowing. Good luck
with that. You can deflate your economy. Yes, that's
a great way to reduce Communist electoral support.
(Here I invoke Phil Edwards again: was the Italian
right stupid enough to deflate?) Or you can devalue.
Well, no, you can't. That darn Bretton Woods.

Of course, you can also go to the IMF. See how long
that lasts without a massive American commitment.

This is similar to my thinking about trade. It does
seem that there was a shift among Republicans towards
a pro-trade stance. It might happen under President
Dewey as much as President Truman, depends on who
Dewey's kingmakers would have been. (Anyone?) But
even so, it's not likely to last. After all, what's
a good way to forestall those darned Communists if
you don't want to devalue? Tariffs! So death to
Bretton Woods, or death to GATT, or more likely
split the difference and weaken 'em both to a
sort of semi-living zombiehood.

So absent an American commitment to an alt-Marshall
Plan, I don't see Bretton Woods making it out of the
1940s as much more than a historical footnote.

I could very well be wrong. I was about American
domestic support for free trade in the late 1940s,
or the strength of the Italian communists at the
same time. It happens more than I'd like.

Best,

Noel
Phil Edwards
2005-02-08 10:10:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by Noel
Consider 1947 from the point of view of a European
politico in the absence of a Marshall Plan. You're
facing balance of payments problems. What can you
do? Well, you can try foreign borrowing. Good luck
with that. You can deflate your economy. Yes, that's
a great way to reduce Communist electoral support.
(Here I invoke Phil Edwards again: was the Italian
right stupid enough to deflate?)
They certainly slammed the brakes on in 1977-8, although that was with
Communist backing. I think that in this TL (I'm still sketchy about
the PoD, but I'm willing to dip into my desktop tub of handwavium)
they'd attempt something similar post-war. In OTL, after all, Italy
effectively came out of the war with a coalition government, with
Communists alongside Christian Democrats (and survivors of Badoglio's
monarchist government, come to that). The big change came not in 1948
but in 1947, when Christian Democrat leader de Gasperi kicked the
Communists and Socialists out of the interim government (just after
returning from a visit to the US, oddly enough).

1947 was before the Italian economic miracle in either of its forms:
the people in power had no experience of the results which could be
achieved either by a few huge de-unionised car factories, or by
thousands of tiny unregulated workshops and sweatshops. So their
instincts will be to slow down rather than speeding up. I'll have to
read up on the macro-economic background, but I think we may just have
brought 1977 forward by thirty years. (Ciao Giampietro!)

Phil
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
Noel
2005-02-08 15:22:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by Phil Edwards
Post by Noel
Consider 1947 from the point of view of a European
politico in the absence of a Marshall Plan. You're
facing balance of payments problems. What can you
do? Well, you can try foreign borrowing. Good luck
with that. You can deflate your economy. Yes, that's
a great way to reduce Communist electoral support.
(Here I invoke Phil Edwards again: was the Italian
right stupid enough to deflate?)
They certainly slammed the brakes on in 1977-8, although that was with
Communist backing. I think that in this TL (I'm still sketchy about
the PoD, but I'm willing to dip into my desktop tub of handwavium)
they'd attempt something similar post-war. In OTL, after all, Italy
effectively came out of the war with a coalition government, with
Communists alongside Christian Democrats (and survivors of Badoglio's
monarchist government, come to that). The big change came not in 1948
but in 1947, when Christian Democrat leader de Gasperi kicked the
Communists and Socialists out of the interim government (just after
returning from a visit to the US, oddly enough).
the people in power had no experience of the results which could be
achieved either by a few huge de-unionised car factories, or by
thousands of tiny unregulated workshops and sweatshops. So their
instincts will be to slow down rather than speeding up. I'll have to
read up on the macro-economic background, but I think we may just have
brought 1977 forward by thirty years. (Ciao Giampietro!)
---Wow. I am so wasting time that I don't have.

Inflation in Italy ran at 105 percent in '47.

In October, Italy increased reserve requirements
at the banks. The inflation halted at the same
time, although the causal link is unclear. See
below.

The political reaction to disinflation, however,
was a series of bombings and the temporary occupation
of the Milan city hall. A general strike was called
for December --- it fizzled, and that was that. U.S.
troops left that same month.

But here's the question: would the De Gasperi have
tossed the Communists out of the government without
the Marshall Plan? After all, on May 6th, 1947, he
said that it would unwise to form a government with-
out them, but on the next day the American ambassador,
James Dunn, made it clear that expelling the Commun-
ists was a precondition for receiving Marshall Plan
aid. The Communists were thus chucked in June.

When Luigi Einaudi went before the National Assembly
with his stabilization plan in October, then, he duly
trumpted the receipt of aid (which had not yet been
delivered, of course) valued between 20 and 25 percent
of Italy's GDP. It would actually receive aid worth
about 11 percent of GDP in 1948.

What if Einaudi can't make this declaration? (In our
ATL, say the war ends a year later, so move everything
up about a year in time.) U.S. recovery aid is ending,
per the OTL schedule, and the implicit balance-of-pay-
ments support provided by all those American soldiers
wandering around is also going away. In OTL, the Com-
munists welcomed the Marshall Plan --- "Italy Needs the
Solid Help of the Generous American Nation" read the
L'Unita headline of 7 June 1947, and Togliatti acquies-
ced in Gasperi's decision to throw them out of the gov-
ernment. In the ATL, he has little reason to be so
accomodating --- there is no help coming from the
Generous American Nation (henceforth GAN) under
President Dewey, who is a year away from a con-
tentious re-election campaign against Some Demo-
crat.

In this world, the Communists are still in the govern-
ment. And thus come a whole series of questions for
Phil. The below is tree, since the questions are
contingent: I hope you can read it.

(1) Do they block the stabilization plan?

(1a) This is bad --- Italy will tighten capital and
trade controls as a response. These controls will be
rather hard to abolish later, politically-speaking.
The inflation will gallop along for a bit. What
then happens in the election?

(2) Do they leave the government, thinking that they
will benefit from the recession that will follow the
government's stabilization policy?

(2a) Einaudi fails to get the plan through the Assem-
bly without the promise of GAN aid. See (1a), only now
the Communists are the opposition party. Don't they
gain a lot of votes? Could they win with the Social-
ists?

(2b) Einaudi succeeds in getting the plan through the
Assembly. The recession is somewhat worse, and there
is no prospect of help from the GAN.

(2b-i) Whither the General Strike in TTL, with no U.S.
aid on the horizon and no directives from Moscow?

(2b-ii) If the General Strike still fizzles, don't the
Communists do a lot better in the elections?

Once we have answers for that, we can start bringing
alt-Italy into the postwar era.

Best,

Noel
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-08 08:27:24 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@aol.com
I will say, with very little knowledge of the subject, hellaciously
yes!
I'm inclined to agree.
Post by c***@aol.com
What about Indonesia and French Indochina?
No! But there'll still be local Communists, not to mention how damned
weak the Dutch and French are in this scenario after extra Nazi
occupation and possible use of nuclear warheads on their soil.
I think the nukes land exclusively on Germany, with the possible
exception of a tactical use or two. Which would be alarming, but would
have little if any effect on postwar recovery.
Post by c***@aol.com
Indonesia still goes free, and Indochina...hell, might wind up one big
Communist state, just like in FaT. (Go me!)
Mm, FaT. -- Agreed on Indonesia; much less certain about Indochina.
Post by c***@aol.com
Or what the Middle East looks like in a world where the Holocaust has
run almost to completion? Is there an Israel at all? If not, then
what?
There'll be...something, that's for sure. Something like Carlos' Hotel
Palestine? Where there's a big Jewish population, but not enough to
offend the delicate sensibilites of their Arab neighbors.
I liked Hotel Palestine a lot, but keep in mind that the POD there was
around 1918-20. The steady trickle of Jewish immigration in the '20s
and '30s might render this scenario untenable. We need to look at the
on-the-ground numbers by OTL 1941. IMS, at that point the Jews were
already ~15% of the population of Palestine. Certainly they'd already
begun to organize and arm themselves.

Also, even a much more efficient Holocaust wouldn't get /all/ of
Europe's Jews. The Bulgarians, some of the Romanians, the handful of
Danes, tens of thousands who managed to successfully hide or pass...
there'd be survivors, and a lot of them would want to go to Palestine.

If you have a Jewish population that forms too big a minority to
peacefully accept Arab rule, but is too small to make a viable Israel,
then I see Big Problems ahead.

[more in a bit, perhaps]


Doug M.
c***@aol.com
2005-02-08 16:45:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
I think the nukes land exclusively on Germany, with the possible
exception of a tactical use or two. Which would be alarming, but would
have little if any effect on postwar recovery.
I guess that makes sense. Plan B, if strategic nuclear bombardment
didn't work, probably was to use nuclear weapons to open up the
Atlantic Wall.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
I liked Hotel Palestine a lot, but keep in mind that the POD there was
around 1918-20. The steady trickle of Jewish immigration in the '20s
and '30s might render this scenario untenable. We need to look at the
on-the-ground numbers by OTL 1941. IMS, at that point the Jews were
already ~15% of the population of Palestine. Certainly they'd
already
Post by s***@yahoo.com
begun to organize and arm themselves.
Also, even a much more efficient Holocaust wouldn't get /all/ of
Europe's Jews. The Bulgarians, some of the Romanians, the handful of
Danes, tens of thousands who managed to successfully hide or pass...
there'd be survivors, and a lot of them would want to go to
Palestine.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
If you have a Jewish population that forms too big a minority to
peacefully accept Arab rule, but is too small to make a viable
Israel,
Post by s***@yahoo.com
then I see Big Problems ahead.
Does the potential collapse of an Israel break temporary US
isolationism in '45-'49? It's hard to say. Dewey might be tempted, but
the US military will be very much smaller, even more so than OTL's
substantial shrinkage. OTOH, they won't be required to keep nearly so
many troops in Germany anymore.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
[more in a bit, perhaps]
Doug M.
j***@faf.mil.fi
2005-02-02 14:40:46 UTC
Permalink
Although the Soviet Union won't be a major player,
the greater suffering and inclinations towards domestic
radicalisms like Communism might well propel an alt-Marshall
Plan funded by the United States. In this situation, central
Europe won't be excluded: Poland _will_ look like Italy,
Czechoslovakia like Austria, Estonia like Finland, Romania like
Spain.
It's interesting that in this assessment of the Marshall Aid and its
potential impact on the Central and East European countries, Poland,
Czechoslovakia and Romania are compared to those countries that did
receive Marshall Aid in our timeline, whereas Estonia is - for some
reason - compared to Finland, which obviously did not receive any aid
in our timeline.

(One might carry this analogy further, and suggest that if Finland had
participated in the Marshall Plan, the country might look like Sweden.
But would this be an improvement?)

Personally, I think that Czechoslovakia would be best compared to
Italy. Both countries share the same internal division between the one
advanced, highly industrialized region contrasted by the somewhat less
developed rural, peripheral territories (Czech region - Northern Italy,
Slovakia - Mezzogiorno, Transcarpathia - Sicily).

As for the rest, Estonia is perhaps best compared to Denmark (roughly
the same size, also the same significance of agricultural produce as
the main import), and not to Finland (a larger state in size and
population, with metal and forest industry, both still virtually
nonexistent sectors in Estonia). Since Poland would still share its
pre-war ethnic divisions as well as the various regional and religious
cleavages in this timeline, its best counterpart might be Yugoslavia
(which, needless to say, was a participant in the Marshall Plan of our
timeline).

The Romanian living standards of this timeline would probably be closer
to, um, the Turkish ones, which would certainly be a major improvement
in itself.



Cheers,
Jalonen
Noel
2005-02-02 18:42:48 UTC
Permalink
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Although the Soviet Union won't be a major player,
the greater suffering and inclinations towards domestic
radicalisms like Communism might well propel an alt-Marshall
Plan funded by the United States. In this situation, central
Europe won't be excluded: Poland _will_ look like Italy,
Czechoslovakia like Austria, Estonia like Finland, Romania like
Spain.
It's interesting that in this assessment of the Marshall Aid and its
potential impact on the Central and East European countries, Poland,
Czechoslovakia and Romania are compared to those countries that did
receive Marshall Aid in our timeline, whereas Estonia is - for some
reason - compared to Finland, which obviously did not receive any aid
in our timeline.
---Is it so obvious?

The main impact of the Marshall Plan was to ease the
political cost of adopting market-friendly policies in
1948-51. Countries that were at risk of populism ---
France, Italy --- benefitted incalcuably. Countries
that were not facing a wrenching adjustment in those
years --- Britain --- experienced only transient and
indirect benefits.

Randy's timeline, as Chet and I have argued, does not
see a Marshall Plan. (I cannot emphasize that enough.)
The important question, then, is what happens to Fin-
land?

Well, since it didn't get any aid, it's hard to argue
that responsible government was saved due to its avail-
ability in OTL.

On the other hand, this is world where a lot of the
big European nations (France, Italy, Poland, Czecho-
slovakia) are adopting inward-looking economic poli-
cies for the exaat same reason Argentina did: they
buy short-term economic stability. Some may fail
and become Communist, but that's still pretty inward
looking.

Unlike OTL's big old Soviet Empire, Finland isn't
going to be in a privileged position with regards
to the markets of any new Communist states.

Upshot? Finland is poorer than in OTL, but by 1970
it is nevertheless one the richer states in a general-
ly poorer Europe.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
(One might carry this analogy further, and suggest that if Finland had
participated in the Marshall Plan, the country might look like
Sweden.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
But would this be an improvement?)
---Obviously not.

Best,

Noel
j***@faf.mil.fi
2005-02-03 12:01:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by Noel
Unlike OTL's big old Soviet Empire, Finland isn't
going to be in a privileged position with regards
to the markets of any new Communist states.
Not to be offensive, but... um, so? Why would this be something that
could not be compensated, especially since the most prominent post-war
export industries such as the forest sector were oriented more towards
the overseas western markets, anyway?

Besides, there should be no burden of war reparations in this timeline,
either, which is an obvious plus.
Post by Noel
Upshot? Finland is poorer than in OTL.
This might be the case, but I doubt that it would necessarily be
because of the lack of the export trade with the USSR. Instead, the
inevitable necessity of rebuilding and restructuring the newly-acquired
territories from the former Soviet Karelia (under Finnish occupation
ever since 1941, and most definitely becoming a permanent part of the
country in any ATL which has witnessed a Soviet collapse) would
obviously pose a massive economic and social burden, surpassing even
the similar problems in the post-unification Germany of our timeline.



Cheers,
Jalonen
Noel
2005-02-03 16:29:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Post by Noel
Unlike OTL's big old Soviet Empire, Finland isn't
going to be in a privileged position with regards
to the markets of any new Communist states.
Not to be offensive, but... um, so? Why would this be something that
could not be compensated, especially since the most prominent
post-war
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
export industries such as the forest sector were oriented more
towards
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
the overseas western markets, anyway?
---No offense taken!

Let's see. The assumption was that Finnish export
growth in the ATL would parallel Argentine growth,
because of greater protectionism in the Western
countries and the Russian Federation. The part
about Russia was just to point out that in this
scenario Finland won't be able to substitute
Russian markets for protected Western ones: I
apology if the wording made it seem that things
went the other way.

In OTL, trade drove Finnish growth: as a % of GDP,
trade rose from 24% in 1950 to 43% in 1970. Push
that growth to Argentine levels, and you've knocked
off almost half of the country's total growth.

Now, you've raised a rub: would Western countries
protect their forest industries? Let's say that they
don't, or that Finland can always find another market.
What then is our counterfactual?

After playing with some data, I find a remarkable
number: forest exports as a % of GDP remained
roughly constant at 10% between 1960 and 1990.
Let's be optimistic, and say that remains un-
changed.

On the other hand, other exports (mostly machines,
and mostly to the USSR) doubled during the period
1960-70, from 4.8% of GDP to 8.7%. That demand is
going to be hard to replicate in a world without
GATT or the EPU, in which European trade policies
look like Latin American trade policies ... or, more
to the point, pre-WW2 trade policies.

So in this world, other exports grow at roughly the
same pace as GDP. Now, the value-added of exports
is usually less than the gross value, but then again
there are multiplier effects. So, quick and dirty:
Finnish GDP in 1970 is about 4% lower. That, of
course, assumes that 1950-60 growth parallels OTL,
and that Finland is successful in exporting its
forest products but is unable to diversify due to
foreign protectionism.

Of course, there are other knock-ons. Long-term
capital inflows in the 1960s were equal to 5% of
the country's GDP. With less trade and fewer ex-
port opportunities, that is going to reduced. That
will, in turn, reduce the country's net level of
investment (although increased domestic savings
will make up some of the shortfall).

Finland's K/Y ratio in the 1960s was roughly (very
roughly) two. Let's say half the investment short-
fall is compensated for by higher domestic invest-
ment. That would knock off another 2.5% of GDP.

Finland's 1970 GDP/worker in this mickey-mouse coun-
terfactual world, then, drops from 62% of the American
level to 57% percent. That pushes Finnish productivity
down to the level of 1970 Greece.

Of course, we should wave our hands to account for lower
growth in 1952-60 (even with slightly higher growth pre-
viously). I wave my hands and call it another 7.5%. (On
the assumption that the 1950s looked just like the 1960s,
which is probably not true.) So 0.925 * 0.925 = 0.86, and
now TTL Finland is 14 percent poorer.

Of course, we still haven't accounted for slower growth
in forest exports. Let's say that they parallel GDP, as
in OTL ... but now GDP is growing more slowly. So that
knocks off another two percent. Poorer than OTL Greece,
only a little bit richer than OTL Mexico.

But that's not that useful a comparison. What does
Finland have in common with Greece or Mexico? Income
distribution is vastly better and public services are
vastly better.

A better way of thinking about it is to say that 1970
Finland in TTL is only as productive as OTL Finland in
1966. Is this an economic catastrophe? Of course not.
It is, however, relative economic decline not unlike
that which afflicted Latin America during the same
period in our world, and for much the same reason.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Besides, there should be no burden of war reparations in this
timeline,
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
either, which is an obvious plus.
---Very true, although to be fair, they did end
in 1952 and had been declining for some time.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Post by Noel
Upshot? Finland is poorer than in OTL.
This might be the case, but I doubt that it would necessarily be
because of the lack of the export trade with the USSR.
---I was not clear before. To reiterate, it isn't the
lack of the export base with the USSR --- it's the *rela-
tive* lack of an export base with anybody.

Please note the relative. Finland is still an export
economy in this counterfactual world.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Instead, the
inevitable necessity of rebuilding and restructuring the
newly-acquired
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
territories from the former Soviet Karelia (under Finnish occupation
ever since 1941, and most definitely becoming a permanent part of the
country in any ATL which has witnessed a Soviet collapse) would
obviously pose a massive economic and social burden, surpassing even
the similar problems in the post-unification Germany of our timeline.
---Yes, that too.

Honest question: was this convincing, or is there a
hole in the hand-waving? The point, simply, is that
small peripheral European economies will be quite
negatively impacted by an increase in protectionism
in the European core, Russia, and the U.S. of A.
relative to OTL.

Best,

Noel

P.S. Should world trade revive, alt-Finland will be
very well positioned to grow, unlike OTL Latin America.
But until then it should keep falling slowly behind.
j***@faf.mil.fi
2005-02-04 11:51:18 UTC
Permalink
Noel wrote:

[Comments on exports and trade driving the economic growth and other
stuff snipped:]
forest exports as a % of GDP remained roughly constant at
10% between 1960 and 1990. Let's be optimistic, and say that
remains unchanged.
When comparing the status of the forest sector as an export industry,
one should bear in mind the obvious differences between the two
timelines. Historically, the territorial losses to the USSR also marked
the loss of some 22% of the forest resources required by the
wood-processing industries - a loss many times compensated later on,
but nonetheless a setback at that particular time. This would not take
place in the alternate timeline; on the contrary, the annexation of
former Soviet Karelia and its vast, primeval woodlands would be a gain
to the forest entrepreneurs, allowing Finland to easily maintain her
pre-war position as the largest European exporter of newsprint, wood
pulp and sawn goods - all of which would be required commodities on the
post-war continent bent on reconstruction, never mind the absence of
American relief programs.

(By the way, I prefer if we'd take this one decade at a time, and start
from the period immediately following the war; during the early 1950s
of our timeline, timber-processing industries still accounted for 80%
of all Finnish exports.)
On the other hand, other exports (mostly machines,
and mostly to the USSR) doubled during the period
1960-70, from 4.8% of GDP to 8.7%. That demand is
going to be hard to replicate in a world without
GATT or the EPU, in which European trade policies
look like Latin American trade policies ... or, more
to the point, pre-WW2 trade policies.
Mmm. Unless I'm mistaken, this rise in metal exports to the Soviet
Union had its roots directly in the war reparations, and in Stalin's
insistence to be compensated with ready-made ships and machinery.
Absent this outside pressure which literally forced a quick and rough
expansion of the engineering industries in our timeline, this export
sector might not gain quite as much prominence, and not quite as early.
In short, even if there _was_ eventually a rising international demand,
the respective Finnish industries might not be as equipped to meet it,
which is probably best regarded as a negative factor.

This takes us back to the question of the relative position of this
export industry in this timeline, and so on.

(On the other hand, the adjustment of the said industries for the war
effort had already created the basis allowing them to meet the
challenge of the war reparations. However, I'm not qualified to judge
whether the wartime expansion might have been more important that the
post-war expansion in this respect.)

On the other hand, the base metals industry is definitely there, doing
well and going strong, and the metallurgical capability and know-how in
itself would still be an asset. By the way, this sector was quite ready
and able to explore entirely new foreign markets in our timeline; the
first Finnish-designed flash smelter abroad was built in... _Japan_, in
1956.

Also, one would expect that copper, zinc, nickel, cobalt and chromium
would remain in steady demand in any post-war world (having retained
the Petsamo territory, Finland is the largest nickel producer in
Europe; as for cobalt and chromium, Finland is the only producer of
these materials in west Europe, and I'm not convinced that the war-torn
Russia could offer too much of a challenge).

But this is perhaps getting lost in details.
Please note the relative. Finland is still an export
economy in this counterfactual world.
Oh, that's understood.
Honest question: was this convincing, or is there a
hole in the hand-waving?
Oh, I don't know. The suggestion that *1970 might resemble 1966 of our
timeline seems convincing, at least - and it really can't be regarded
as a terribly negative impact, as you already noticed - but
extrapolating allohistorical economic trends isn't my expertise, and I
tend to look at these things more from the viewpoint of an, um,
engineer, rather than from the viewpoint of an economist.

What's more, I'm always constrained by my need to analyze things in
detail and in depth, and when I notice that I can't meet these
self-imposed standards of mine, I usually choose to give up altogether,
rather than deliver a prediction I'm not personally satisfied with.
Then there's also my viewpoint as a common man of the street; I'm just
thinking that never mind how protectionist the large countries might
get, they'd still have to import these-and-these commodities from
_somewhere_, and would thus be ready to compromise and conclude
separate commercial agreements in certain sectors - which is more or
less what had happened even during the most protectionist years of the
inter-war era.

Moreover, I'm uncomfortable with all long-term predictions. Sometimes,
the unexpected just happens. For example, the Finnish timber industry
was in serious trouble in 1918-1920, suffering from the double threat
of the new European protective trade barriers as well as the domestic
export tariffs, but in the end, things just turned out better than
expected, thanks to several lucky coincidences. Hey, Russia just
collapsed and there's a vacuum in the international market! By the way,
did you know there just happens to be this industrialist who knows
Herbert Hoover personally and says that he can open the American
markets for us! The value of markka just hit the rock bottom, yee-haa,
count the profits! And now the British and French say that they're
ready for individual trade agreements with us! And the result was an
insane growth of the forest sector all through the '20s.

So, personally, I don't really have the slightest clue whether your
analysis of the potential pace of industrial and economic development
and its impact on the level of the Finnish living standards in this
alternate post-war world is a plausible one or not. To answer that
question, I'd have to know the exact political developments of this
ATL, the potential international or internal crisis which might have an
impact on the commercial relations and the respective economies, the
labour relations, and stuff like that.

In short: I'm far too deconstructive in my approach to comment on this.
The point, simply, is that small peripheral European
economies will be quite negatively impacted by an
increase in protectionism in the European core, Russia,
and the U.S. of A. relative to OTL.
That's obvious, of course, but how much protectionism could there be,
how long would it last and what export industries would be affected the
most? And so on.




Cheers,
Jalonen
Phil Edwards
2005-02-07 23:10:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by Noel
The main impact of the Marshall Plan was to ease the
political cost of adopting market-friendly policies in
1948-51. Countries that were at risk of populism ---
France, Italy --- benefitted incalcuably.
Hmm. I'm not familiar with French reconstruction, but I'd be
interested to know what you understand by the phrase "at risk of
populism" in the Italian context - and the phrase "market-friendly
policies", come to that.

Phil
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
Noel
2005-02-08 15:09:54 UTC
Permalink
See another post in this thread.

Best,

Noel
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-02 20:44:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Since Poland would still share its
pre-war ethnic divisions as well as the various regional and
religious
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
cleavages in this timeline, its best counterpart might be Yugoslavia
It's not a strong analogy. Poles-Belarussians-Ukrainians don't closely
map to Serbs-Croats-Bozniaks. And then of course the geography
mandates a very different working out of ethnic rivalries.

I suspect it would be more like pre-WWI Hungary, though that's rough
and approximate too.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
(which, needless to say, was a participant in the Marshall Plan of our
timeline).
Briefly, yes.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
The Romanian living standards of this timeline would probably be closer
to, um, the Turkish ones, which would certainly be a major
improvement
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
in itself.
? Romanian and Turkish living standards are almost identical right
now. (2004 pcGDP, PPP adjusted.)

I suspect that without a Communist interlude Romania would be at
roughly the level of OTL Greece today. Though the path to get there
would be very different.

Note that in this TL, Yugoslavia and probably Albania are Communist the
moment the last German leaves or surrenders. Probably Greece too.

That opens up a whole 'nother area of allohistorical speculation:
Communism in a TL where it's limited to a handful of small countries,
because the USSR has been crushed in WWII. That would be interesting
in its own right.


Doug M.
Noel
2005-02-02 22:37:03 UTC
Permalink
This would be a great timeline to explore in more detail.

OK, here's my first pass. Highly agricultural countries tend
towards a Latin American import-substitution trap, including
France. In other words, they look a lot like OTL Argentina or
Spain before 1960. They grow, and grow fast ... but more
slowly than they did OTL. That creates political pressures,
and you get military dictatorships in response. Say Poland,
Romania, Hungary, Ukraine, some Baltics, and (with its own
weird spin) France.

Italy may wind up Communist. Hell, it almost happened
in OTL. Here, no Marshall Plan, an uglier end to the war.
Communism exists along a Mediterranean axis from Italy
through Yugoslavia and Greece. (Does Yugoslavia annex
Albania with no Uncle Joe to say no?)

My read of Italian history is that a Communist takeover
is more likely than not, but my read of Italian history is very
limited here. Thoughts?

Industrial countries with strong democratic institutions go
a similar route by default, as their neighboring markets get
cut off. They don't wind doing the whole Uruguay, but they do
wind up looking a lot like OTL Britain, only worse. U.K.,
Netherlands, Belgium, the Scandinavian countries, some
Baltics.

No GATT, no IPU, limited UNRRA aid that trickles out by the
end of 1949. (Unless a Communist takeover in Italy is enough
to shock the U.S. out of its complacency.) You do get a U.N.
at which the Russian Federation gets a seat, for the same rea-
son that France does.

There is no Soviet zone in Germany, of course. The French
get their occupation zone in the Rhineland. The U.S. and U.K.,
though, eager to be done with the cost of the occupation, create
a Bizonia which then becomes the Federal Republic of Germany,
only this FRG has a clause in the Constitution like Japan, renoun-
cing an army and all that. Whether the French allow their zone to
participate is another question.

And then things get wild. You've got a poorer, less stable Europe,
and a Communism which is spreading (Yugoslavia, Greece, Italy,
China) but which has no Red Menace behind it.

Does that sound right, Doug? I'd be willing to try to flesh this out
further.

Best,

Noel
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-03 19:14:17 UTC
Permalink
Post by Noel
This would be a great timeline to explore in more detail.
I agree, although I also think that Randy needs to specify just how the
Germans "win" in the East. It makes a difference.

I rather like Chet's idea of Mikoyan leading a rump USSR beyond the
Urals. But a surviving USSR, even a shrunken and battered one, makes a
big difference in world response to Communism. So we need to fix that
variable first.

Randy? It's your WI. Thoughts?
Post by Noel
OK, here's my first pass. Highly agricultural countries tend
towards a Latin American import-substitution trap, including
France.
That's not specifically LA, though. Look how eagerly it got taken up
by pretty much every post-colonial regime everywhere.

But anyway. Sure.
Post by Noel
That creates political pressures,
and you get military dictatorships in response. Say Poland,
Romania, Hungary, Ukraine, some Baltics, and (with its own
weird spin) France.
The east-west split is still relevant. You really can't generalize.

France -- democracy had big problems, including a very rigid left-right
split, but was still functional

Hungary -- no democracy whatsoever after 1918. Conservative "Regent"
running a deeply illiberal regime; later fascism outright.

Ukraine -- never had any.

Romania -- liberalizing and democratizing trend from 1918 onwards,
peaking with the country's first clean election in 1928. Then a
one-two punch with the Depression and the ascension of the horrible
King Carol II. Rapid downward spiral into authoritarian rule, fascism,
and dictatorship. (In that order. Long story.)

Baltics -- varied; Jussi can give details.

And so on. But I think the East-West split is still important. While
not always as obvious as during 1945-90, that division is very old and
very deep.
Post by Noel
Italy may wind up Communist. Hell, it almost happened
in OTL. Here, no Marshall Plan, an uglier end to the war.
Communism exists along a Mediterranean axis from Italy
through Yugoslavia and Greece. (Does Yugoslavia annex
Albania with no Uncle Joe to say no?)
I think there's a short-lived Balkan federation of Yu, Alb and Bul.
Sort of like the United Arab Republics of OTL. It /might/ break up
peacefully.
Post by Noel
My read of Italian history is that a Communist takeover
is more likely than not, but my read of Italian history is very
limited here. Thoughts?
Phil Edwards, we invoke you.
Post by Noel
Industrial countries with strong democratic institutions go
a similar route by default, as their neighboring markets get
cut off. They don't wind doing the whole Uruguay, but they do
wind up looking a lot like OTL Britain, only worse.
Was that really OTL Britain's problem, though? They still had plenty
of markets. They just deep structural problems (which were left
unaddressed and allowed to worsen for, like, a century) plus horrible
policy in the interwar years. Was it really about markets?
Post by Noel
There is no Soviet zone in Germany, of course. The French
get their occupation zone in the Rhineland. The U.S. and U.K.,
though, eager to be done with the cost of the occupation, create
a Bizonia which then becomes the Federal Republic of Germany,
only this FRG has a clause in the Constitution like Japan, renoun-
cing an army and all that. Whether the French allow their zone to
participate is another question.
The ideal of German unification seems to have taken firm root in the
national soul, so it's gonna happen sometime. And the French can't
afford an occupation forever either.

But yah, demilitarized Germany. Maybe deindustrialized too.
Post by Noel
Does that sound right, Doug? I'd be willing to try to flesh this out
further.
Assume for argument's sake that FDR dies on schedule, and Harry Truman
oversees the last year of a war that ends in early 1946. This is not
going to be a "yay, both Nazism and Communism are whipped, happy shiny
world!" But I don't think it has to be a dystopia, either.

Frex, I'm less sure about everybody playing beggar-thy-neighbor. 1946
is going to be a unipolar moment. The dominant victorious power likes
free markets. Some gnarly bits involving personalities here, but I
don't see why a *Dumbarton Oaks is out of the question. Keep in mind
that conventional wisdom (in the US) had swung towards the notion that
all those tariffs had been bad (true) and had helped cause the
Depression (false, but that's what they were thinking).

It needn't be all that bad. A key question is whether the US steps up,
for good and ill.

Which loops us back to Russia and the progress of the war in Europe,
1941-6. Randy?


Doug M.
Noel
2005-02-03 20:07:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
This would be a great timeline to explore in more detail.
I agree, although I also think that Randy needs to specify just how the
Germans "win" in the East. It makes a difference.
I rather like Chet's idea of Mikoyan leading a rump USSR beyond the
Urals. But a surviving USSR, even a shrunken and battered one, makes a
big difference in world response to Communism. So we need to fix that
variable first.
Randy? It's your WI. Thoughts?
---I like Chet's idea too, but FWIW I like the
idea of Communism sans USSR. Is that plausible?
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
That creates political pressures,
and you get military dictatorships in response. Say Poland,
Romania, Hungary, Ukraine, some Baltics, and (with its own
weird spin) France.
The east-west split is still relevant. You really can't generalize.
France -- democracy had big problems, including a very rigid
left-right
Post by s***@yahoo.com
split, but was still functional
---Point taken. I suppose I'm thinking of French
democracy's near-death experience in 1958, but I
agree: a military coup is more probable than in
OTL, but still a low probability event.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Hungary;
Ukraine;
Romania.
---The Tin Hat belt. I suppose the Ukrainians will
be pretty immunized against Communism, but subversion
will be an issue in Hungary and Romania. Fun fun.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
And so on. But I think the East-West split is still important.
While
Post by s***@yahoo.com
not always as obvious as during 1945-90, that division is very old and
very deep.
---Agreed.

(snip Italy until we find out more)
Post by s***@yahoo.com
I think there's a short-lived Balkan federation of Yu, Alb and Bul.
Sort of like the United Arab Republics of OTL. It /might/ break up
peacefully.
---Communist Bulgaria without the Red Army? Must hear
more. Do tell!
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Phil Edwards, we invoke you.
---Please!
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Was that really OTL Britain's problem, though? They still had plenty
of markets. They just deep structural problems (which were left
unaddressed and allowed to worsen for, like, a century) plus horrible
policy in the interwar years. Was it really about markets?
---Not really. Britain had a whole slog of problems,
some understood, some not. I was just making a compari-
son of what alternate living standards, industrial produc-
tivity, and (sans wirtschaftwunders) labor relations are
likely to be like in northern Europe. For entirely dif-
ferent reasons.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
There is no Soviet zone in Germany, of course. The French
get their occupation zone in the Rhineland. The U.S. and U.K.,
though, eager to be done with the cost of the occupation, create
a Bizonia which then becomes the Federal Republic of Germany,
only this FRG has a clause in the Constitution like Japan, renoun-
cing an army and all that. Whether the French allow their zone to
participate is another question.
The ideal of German unification seems to have taken firm root in the
national soul, so it's gonna happen sometime. And the French can't
afford an occupation forever either.
But yah, demilitarized Germany. Maybe deindustrialized too.
---Deindustrialized would be damend hard to enforce.
I suspect the U.S.-U.K. contingent would give up when
they realized how tough it would be to feed all those
deindustrialized Germans.

But I can imagine France pulling a USSR in the Rhineland.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
Does that sound right, Doug? I'd be willing to try to flesh this out
further.
Assume for argument's sake that FDR dies on schedule, and Harry Truman
oversees the last year of a war that ends in early 1946. This is not
going to be a "yay, both Nazism and Communism are whipped, happy shiny
world!" But I don't think it has to be a dystopia, either.
Frex, I'm less sure about everybody playing beggar-thy-neighbor.
1946
Post by s***@yahoo.com
is going to be a unipolar moment. The dominant victorious power likes
free markets. Some gnarly bits involving personalities here, but I
don't see why a *Dumbarton Oaks is out of the question. Keep in mind
that conventional wisdom (in the US) had swung towards the notion that
all those tariffs had been bad (true) and had helped cause the
Depression (false, but that's what they were thinking).
It needn't be all that bad. A key question is whether the US steps up,
for good and ill.
---True, true.

OK, here's some history. The U.S. started work on the
International Trade Organization in 1944. The ITO plans
were revealed to the public in '45, and the reception was
... uh ... lukewarm. So the State Department started a
two-track negotiation with other countries: one created
the ITO, the other established a (not yet "the") GATT.

Now, the GATT was a brilliant manuever by the Truman Ad-
ministration, which new that a trade agreement was going
to be DOA in Congress, despite the pro-trade sentiment
that Doug mentioned. See, in 1945 the Congress extended
the Reciprocal Trade Agreements Act through 1948. The
RTAA was a sneaky little brainchild of Cordell Hull, in
which Congress *pre-approved* whatever bilateral and
fully reciprocal trade agreement the President entered
into. Congress never intended the RTAA to be a mechan-
ism for general trade liberalization, but Hull knew
what he was doing --- GATT was designed as a massive
number of "bilateral" deals, and the U.S. signed on
with no need for Congress to get involved in 1947.

(For a contrarian view, see
http://www.people.fas.harvard.edu/~hiscox/IO1999.pdf.
I don't agree with the author, FWIW, but he's not crazy.)

Now, in 1949 the Senate started hearings on reauthor-
izing the RTAA, without which the GATT as we know it
would have died stillborn. It passed the Senate 48-33,
with Democrats in favor 47-1 and Republicans against
18-15.

And with that, I have a meeting to attend.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Which loops us back to Russia and the progress of the war in Europe,
1941-6. Randy?
---Yes. Randy?

Best,

Noel
c***@aol.com
2005-02-03 22:13:28 UTC
Permalink
What about a good old-fashioned military junta in the Russian
Federation? 1945-1946 sees several rounds of shooting German
collaborators as the Baikal government's Red Army moves west from the
Urals as the Germans pull out to try and stave off disaster in the
West. Aw, hell, let's take a page from Turtledove and say it's Fedor
Tolbukhin running the show, with Mikoyan tagging along to provide a
civilian gloss. Tolbukhin has his own problems, like dealing with
surviving Stalinists, nationalist uprisings, generals who don't
acknowledge his authority, et. al, and makes it honestly clear that he
has no interest in Communist expansion. Especially if something like
Marshall Plan aid is available on the table.

As for Chairman Mao, well. Aid dropped to about 0 in 1942, but JJS is
still pretty bad at his job.

As for 1944, I see it as a Republican year in this scenario. The war's
been a lot bloodier, looks keen to go on a lot longer, and FDR has been
under a lot worse strain these last four years. I think it's entirely
likely that he might even _die_ during the campaign, or at least suffer
an attack to make it clear that his health is going. It was 53-47 even
in OTL, with FDR putting on a great showing, with all those Allied
victories in 1943-44, and with a surviving Soviet Union.

(Which means some renegade ex-Stalinists might flee to the
Mediterreanean, hooray!)
r***@gmail.com
2005-02-04 01:43:19 UTC
Permalink
[deletia]
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Hungary;
Ukraine;
Romania.
---The Tin Hat belt. I suppose the Ukrainians will
be pretty immunized against Communism,
Like Ukraine OTL?
[deletia]
Post by s***@yahoo.com
And so on. But I think the East-West split is still important.
While
Post by s***@yahoo.com
not always as obvious as during 1945-90, that division is very old
and
Post by s***@yahoo.com
very deep.
---Agreed.
Though the division, FWIW, seems to have been rather more porous in the
past.
(snip Italy until we find out more)
Post by s***@yahoo.com
I think there's a short-lived Balkan federation of Yu, Alb and Bul.
Sort of like the United Arab Republics of OTL. It /might/ break up
peacefully.
---Communist Bulgaria without the Red Army? Must hear
more. Do tell!
Ditto.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Phil Edwards, we invoke you.
---Please!
And ditto.
[deletia]
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
There is no Soviet zone in Germany, of course. The French
get their occupation zone in the Rhineland. The U.S. and U.K.,
though, eager to be done with the cost of the occupation, create
a Bizonia which then becomes the Federal Republic of Germany,
only this FRG has a clause in the Constitution like Japan,
renoun-
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
cing an army and all that. Whether the French allow their zone to
participate is another question.
The ideal of German unification seems to have taken firm root in the
national soul, so it's gonna happen sometime. And the French can't
afford an occupation forever either.
But yah, demilitarized Germany. Maybe deindustrialized too.
---Deindustrialized would be damend hard to enforce.
I suspect the U.S.-U.K. contingent would give up when
they realized how tough it would be to feed all those
deindustrialized Germans.
But I can imagine France pulling a USSR in the Rhineland.
Easily.

One possibility: A Polish zone of occupation? Arguably, the Eastern
Territories OTL would have constituted the Polish zone had Poland not
acquired sovereignty over the area. The lands east of the Oder-Neisse
(western or eastern) perhaps?
[deletia]
And with that, I have a meeting to attend.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Which loops us back to Russia and the progress of the war in
Europe,
Post by s***@yahoo.com
1941-6. Randy?
---Yes. Randy?
1. It's not my WI. Andrew Reeves proposed it initially, I think. Or we
worked on it jointly. This fades quickly.

2. I lack the historical knowledge re: WW2's military/political aspects
to comment in-depth on the matter, I fear.
Best,
Noel
Later,
Randy
A***@yahoo.com
2005-02-04 06:45:27 UTC
Permalink
When I brought it up, the collapse was something of a handwave, since I
was doing a "how could WWII have been uglier?" sort of speculation.
Something like Chet's portrayal of a Soviet collapse seems best IMO
(but then, my WWII knowledge is fairly superficial).

Andrew R.
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-04 14:23:41 UTC
Permalink
Post by Noel
---I like Chet's idea too, but FWIW I like the
idea of Communism sans USSR. Is that plausible?
I think so.

Randy has passed on spelling this out, so let me try in very general
terms. Barbarossa goes (handwave) better than iOTL, capturing Moscow
and Leningrad by the end of '41. Success leads to success, with the
Russians being forced steadily back through '42. A coup removes Stalin
near the end of that year; midway through a series of convulsions, one
short-lived government signs a treaty with Hitler in February '43.
It's a super-Brest Litovsk, giving him all of the USSR wast of the
Urals. Asian Russia is still independent. Sullen peace descends,
though there are still serious problems with partisans across the whole
vast region. Hitler sets up puppet states in the Ukraine and Georgia.

Next year of war goes much as iOTL. Hitler still doesn't understand
logistics, so the Allies take North Africa and Sicily on schedule.
D-Day is in August '44. By late spring '45 the Allies have recaptured
most of France. Right around this time Romania declares itself
neutral. Hitler invades with two army corps; the Allies send some aid,
but it's Greece '40 all over again, and Bucharest falls to the
Wehrmacht in July.

The nukes start falling in August. Alas, they don't get Hitler with
the first one, so the war goes on until (6-10 nuclear weapons later) a
coup takes out Hitler in January '45, as the Allies are advancing into
Bavaria. The generals need one mure nuke to be convinced that
"unconditional" means "unconditional" -- it's really too bad about
Frankfurt -- and the guns fall silent in February '46, at which point
the Allies have already occupied all of Italy, about half of Germany,
and some islands off the coast of Yugoslavia.

Finland and Bulgaria have cut separate peaces by this time; Hungary
hasn't, but surrenders a few days later.

Post-communist Russia, which is rapidly coalescing into a military
dictatorship, is given a seat at the peace conference table but is now
somewhere between France and China in the pecking order. The Allies
recognize the Ukrainian state (though not the Georgian one), so Russia
has borders rather close to the RSFRS of modern OTL -- plus the
Caucasus, minus Finnish Karelia and Sakhalin.

If you find something grossly unacceptable here, pick away. But if it
seems at least plausible, then let's look at the postwar.
Post by Noel
---Point taken. I suppose I'm thinking of French
democracy's near-death experience in 1958,
Which was arguably just the postwar version of the problems they were
having in the '30s.
Post by Noel
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Hungary;
Ukraine;
Romania.
---The Tin Hat belt. I suppose the Ukrainians will
be pretty immunized against Communism, but subversion
will be an issue in Hungary and Romania. Fun fun.
Nono.

1) Assuming the pattern given above, Ukrainian nationalism may
actually seize upon communism -- or something kinda sorta like it -- to
distinguish the new rulers from their Russian cousins.

Best guess? You start with a Nazi puppet state ruled by local
Fascists. (It's odd, but there are always local Fascists.) When the
Germans go toes up there's a realization that this won't work. Rather
than have the Germans come back, there's a coup, or perhaps a "coup".
The result is most (but not all) of the Fascists dead and a coalition
government dominated by former Partisans.

I don't think this will be Communist per se; but it'll be radical,
authoritarian and collectivist. And nationalist as hell, of course.

2) Hungary, eek. I'm not sure, but absent an occupation by the Red
Army it won't be Communist. The local Communists had been hunted
almost to extinction by Horthy and the local fascists -- except for the
ones who joined them, of course, plus a few disguised as members of the
tiny, neutered Social Democrat party. Subversion not really an option,
especially if Communism is associated with lesser breeds in the
Balkans. Something weird, and definitely not democratic.

3) Romania, assuming the above scenario, is actually in better shape
than iOTL. Communism, no.

-- Romania and Hungary had pretty much no Communists whatsoever in the
'30s. Romania was ethnically, socially, and culturally the toughest
sell in Europe... a nation of deeply religious, conservative,
xenophobic small peasant landholders and sharecroppers, where the
industrial classes were small, geographically concentrated, and
disproportionately non-Romanian. Before 1941 there were less than a
thousand Communists in the whole country, and a majority of them were
Hungarians, Germans, or Jews. After 1944 it took three or four years
to grow a Romanian Communist Party big enough to take over the
government.

Hungary, almost as bad -- fanatically anti-Communist from 1919 onwards.
Hungary had a bigger industrial working class, though, plus it had a
lot of Fascists who switched easily to being Communists, which is why
the Hungarian Communist Party grew faster in the postwar years OTL.

Both very different from, say, Czecheslovakia (which always had a lot
of Communists running around) or even Bulgaria (which had an illegal
but large and powerful Communist party.)

Anyhow, Romania. King Mihai flies back from exile in the spring of
'46. It won't be a happy shiny democracy for a long time, but there
are prospects.

4) Yugoslavia and Albania, as iOTL.

Whoops, must run.


Doug M.
b***@eve.albany.edu
2005-02-04 18:18:48 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Next year of war goes much as iOTL. Hitler still doesn't understand
logistics, so the Allies take North Africa and Sicily on schedule.
D-Day is in August '44. By late spring '45 the Allies have
recaptured
Post by s***@yahoo.com
most of France.
Ok, here I'm dubious. D-day wasn't a walkover by any means OTL: with
most of the troops that OTL were fighting in Russia (allways a
substantial majority of Germany's better forces) available to reinforce
France, I find a successful D-Day in 1944 iffy, at least with
comparable forces on the Allied side. Perhaps in '45, with the US
military machine mobilized till it creaks at the rivets, and 3-4 times
the OTL buildup...but that point we'll have the atom bomb anyway. Sans
the Soviets, we most likely slowly reduce central Europe to rubble
'45-'46, by which time said full-scale mobilization of resources should
have the atom bombs in mass production.

best,
Bruce
j***@faf.mil.fi
2005-02-04 12:01:41 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Baltics -- varied; Jussi can give details.
Estonia: an ultra-parliamentary democracy in 1919-1934, unique in
continental Europe. The supreme executive power in the country
entrusted entirely to the legislature. No office of the head of state,
the government completely subordinated to the parliament. Popular
plebiscites as an essential part of the system. Cultural autonomy for
the minorities. An agricultural state dominated by free smallholders,
with agrarian populists as the largest political party. Agricultural
produce as the most significant export sector, with an output
approaching that of Denmark. Oil shale deposits and industry as a
national reserve of modest importance, guaranteeing an independence in
energy. Living standards entirely comparable to those in Finland.

Soviet-backed communist coup attempt in 1924, followed by a rise in the
extreme right-wing radicalism. New constitution in 1933, establishing
the executive position of the president of the republic, entrusted with
extraordinary powers. Coup d'etat by PM Konstantin Pats after the
introduction of the new constitution in 1934; all political parties
from right to left abolished. The so-called "silent period" of
authoritarian rule in 1934-1940. Elections in 1936 with
government-approved candidates, no political parties allowed. New
constitution in 1937, plans for a gradual democratization never
implemented due to the Soviet takeover in 1940. Most former political
leaders killed, deported, exiled or driven underground in 1940-1941. A
nominal autonomy under a small clique of collaborators under the German
occupation after 1941.

Prospects in the ATL? Reasonably fair.


Latvia: liberal democracy in 1919-1934, with right-wing progressives,
social democrats and free farmers as the leading political parties. The
communist party annihilated by Stalin in 1937-1938 under the charges of
"sectarianism" (i.e. collaborating with the socialists). Minority
rights for Jews, Germans, Russians, Byelorussians and Poles guaranteed
in the constitution. Living standards on a respectable Scandinavian
level. A state-backed manufacturing industry of electrical appliances
(VEF) as an exceptionally promising export sector.

Coup d'etat by PM Karlis Ulmanis in 1934, under the pretext of an
emergency measure in order to protect the country against extreme
right-wing elements. Authoritarian rule in 1934-1940, parliamentary
politics suspended, political parties abolished. The offices of the
president and the prime minister combined in 1936, leading to an
effective personal dictatorship with Ulmanis as the "Vadonis" (Leader).
Soviet takeover in 1940. The experiences under the subsequent
occupation broadly similar to those described above in the case of
Estonia - the most important exception being that the Holocaust had a
far, far greater impact on Latvia, due to the larger Jewish population.

Prospects in the ATL? Above average.


Lithuania: parliamentary democracy until 1926, brought to a halt by a
sudden military coup modeled after the Polish example. A peripheral
agrarian country with living standards on the East European level
comparable to Poland, with the loss of Vilnius to Poland and later on
the loss of Klaipeda to Germany having a negative effect on the
economy.

Parliament dissolved permanently in 1927, presidential powers augmented
in a new constitution issued by Antanas Smetona in 1928. One-party
state with the nationalist "Tautininkai" party exercising supreme rule
in politics; peasant disorders suppressed by state in 1935, with a few
casualties. Fascist features introduced after 1936, with a paramilitary
vanguard organization "Gelezinis Vilkas" ("Iron Wolf") and a cult of
character of Smetona as "Tautos Vadas" ("Leader of the Nation").
Soft-core fascism; authoritarian and undemocratic, but no elaborate
security organs, no systematic harassment or terrorism against
dissident elements, and no death sentences. The state censorship still
allowing a moderate criticism of the ruling regime.

Soviet takeover in 1940, with an exceptionally violent terror, German
occupation in 1941; the subsequent experiences even worse than in
Latvia, especially for the Jewish population.

Prospects in the ATL: um, bad.




Cheers,
Jalonen
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-04 13:44:50 UTC
Permalink
Estonia... Coup d'etat by PM Konstantin Pats after the
introduction of the new constitution in 1934; all political parties
from right to left abolished. The so-called "silent period" of
authoritarian rule in 1934-1940.
Latvia... Coup d'etat by PM Karlis Ulmanis in 1934, under the pretext
of an emergency measure in order to protect the country against
extreme
right-wing elements. Authoritarian rule in 1934-1940, parliamentary
politics suspended, political parties abolished.
So there were /two/ coups by Prime Ministers! Okay. That explains
(some of) my confusion.
Lithuania... One-party
state with the nationalist "Tautininkai" party exercising supreme rule
in politics; peasant disorders suppressed by state in 1935... a cult
of
character of Smetona as "Tautos Vadas" ("Leader of the Nation").
Soft-core fascism; authoritarian and undemocratic, but no elaborate
security organs, no systematic harassment or terrorism against
dissident elements, and no death sentences. The state censorship still
allowing a moderate criticism of the ruling regime.
This sounds like a mirror image of interwar Hungary. Which had a
semblance of democracy (a Parliament, for which elections were solemnly
held every few years), multiple legal parties (though only the
Government party had any power) and no cult of character for Horthy (he
was widely unpopular)... but which had nasty security organs,
systematic harassment (especially of Jews), state-sponsored terrorism,
and death sentences for left-wing and liberal troublemakers. (Robbers
and murderers of the right were almost always given light sentences "in
consideration of their patriotic motives").

I've been reading up on Hungary lately? Astounded to discover that
there was vigorous political competition in the immediate prewar years.
Only it was between rival Fascist parties. Fascist leaders, as we all
know, follow the Highlander credo, but Hungary was the weird exception:
there were like six of them. The Bethlen/Horthy government (which was
an ugly, stupid, mean-spirited far right-wing authoritarian nationalist
regime, but not Fascist) survived in large part by playing them off
against each other.

Further astounded to find that the founder/leader of the most important
Fascist group, the Arrow Cross? Was Quonster. No, seriously. More
about this sometime, maybe.


Doug M.
j***@faf.mil.fi
2005-02-05 09:42:42 UTC
Permalink
I've been reading up on Hungary lately.
Uh, from works in Romanian?
Astounded to discover that there was vigorous political
competition in the immediate prewar years. Only it was
between rival Fascist parties.
Did you read the story that I posted on the Hungarian volunteers in
Finland? Meet Kemeri Nagy Imre, the first romantic nazi hero on this
newsgroup, and take a look at his personal history:

http://tinyurl.com/6epnh
http://tinyurl.com/6x69x
Further astounded to find that the founder/leader of
the most important Fascist group, the Arrow Cross?
Was Quonster.
Szalasi was a fascinating character, certainly, but I must say that I
don't quite catch the connection between him and our venerable Korean
contributor. Except in the sense that they shared the same Asian roots,
but you're probably talking of something else, no?



Cheers,
Jalonen
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-06 14:11:20 UTC
Permalink
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
I've been reading up on Hungary lately.
Uh, from works in Romanian?
Some yes and some no.

N.B., the Ceausescu period produced some /remarkable/ works of
historiography.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Did you read the story that I posted on the Hungarian volunteers in
Finland?
No, but now I'm going to.

(Sometimes I neglect good TLs, I'm embarrassed to confess, precisely
because they're good. And I know that if I follow them, I'll start to
post regularly. And time is sometimes short, with the job and the kids
and all. Case in point.)
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Further astounded to find that the founder/leader of
the most important Fascist group, the Arrow Cross?
Was Quonster.
Szalasi was a fascinating character, certainly, but I must say that I
don't quite catch the connection between him and our venerable Korean
contributor. Except in the sense that they shared the same Asian roots,
but you're probably talking of something else, no?
-- Garbled language, even by fascist standards. Often literally
incomprehensible.
-- Loved feudalism, but felt it needed to be modernized. Meritocracy
would produce the new aristocracy.
-- Confused autodidact. Personal philosophy a weird mishmash derived
from eclectic readings, from Marx to spiritualists. A great believer
in the importance of the good education he never had.
-- Love, indeed worship, of power and /macht/. Mystical belief that
Might and Right would necessarily align, with a fair amount of
Hegelian-positivist "it must be good because it was forced upon us".
-- Fascination with cavalry and cavalry charges. (The horse is the
natural ally of the Hungarian!)
-- Sincere and fanatic anti-Communist. Pilsudski saved civilization in
1920.
-- Healthy dollop of self-hatred, due in large part to his own
"unclean" blood; his father was a naturalized Armenian (Szalosi <-
Salosian) and his mother a Ruthenian). This also translated into
mouth-breathing racism, but only towards particular lesser breeds
(i.e., Armenians and Ruthenians).
-- All that said, and granted that he committed and unleashed a great
deal of folly and evil, there was a strange innocence about the man.
The worst was done in his name, but not at his command. You couldn't
like him, and you could certainly despise him, but he's surprisingly
difficult to hate. One is left with the feeling that he was sincerely
deluded rather than wicked.

Oh, and:

-- The name of his ideology was "Hungarianism".


Doug M.
Phil Edwards
2005-02-08 00:16:54 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Astounded to discover that
there was vigorous political competition in the immediate prewar years.
Only it was between rival Fascist parties. Fascist leaders, as we all
there were like six of them.
Have you read about Doriot and De'at and Deloncle and the other ones I
can never remember because their names don't begin with D? I'd always
had the impression that Fascist leaders follow the credo that TCBOO,
but with the codicil '...and it can only be me'.

Phil
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
b***@eve.albany.edu
2005-02-07 22:55:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
This would be a great timeline to explore in more detail.
I agree, although I also think that Randy needs to specify just how the
Germans "win" in the East. It makes a difference.
I rather like Chet's idea of Mikoyan leading a rump USSR beyond the
Urals. But a surviving USSR, even a shrunken and battered one, makes a
big difference in world response to Communism. So we need to fix that
variable first.
Options would seem to be a military dictatorship, some sort of
Communist regime, any mix of the two previous or total anarchy: given
the likelihood that Germany doesn't occupy all of the USSR out to
Vladivostok and the Afghan border, I'd find the last unlikely, although
any sort of rump regime that establishes itself beyond German control
might have fun with rebellion breaking out in central Asia.

I have trouble seeing the Germans setting up any sort of stable puppet
regime on territory beyond actual boots on the ground, so if they're
not occupying all of the USSR, whoever runs what's left is not going to
be a German creation, but some Soviet General or top party official
willing to do a Brest-Litovsk in hopes that the Germans might
eventually be defeated by the Americans. Soviet Generals - how
indoctrinated? I mean, likelier to set up at least nominally
"socialist" regime than simply going fascist?

In the case of total chaos and civil war in the areas beyong German
control - who else has the organization to compete with the Communists?
I have some difficulty in seeing, say, a "return to the Czar" faction
winning out.

My more general point is that whatever group comes to power after the
German collapse - and short of total implosion, they're likely to
control central Asia, as well as European Russia [1]- is likely to be
somewhat Red-tinged, although they may call their new state "Russia"
rather than the USSR. And if the US isn't handing out goodies to compel
good behaviour, quite likely sympathetic to the new Communist regimes
in Europe. Whether this really counts as a "surviving USSR", I dunno.

And, once again, let's not forget Mao! (Thought here: with Korea being
liberated purely by US forces in this TL, does the US end up supporting
Chiang in Manchuria? Is this enough to change the outcome of the
Chinese civil war?)
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
That creates political pressures,
and you get military dictatorships in response. Say Poland,
Romania, Hungary, Ukraine,
Re the Ukraine, if the US is isolationist, what odds that the new
Russian state tries to sieze it once they get on their feet? Will the
British and French resist this? The Poles?
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
There is no Soviet zone in Germany, of course. The French
get their occupation zone in the Rhineland. The U.S. and U.K.,
though, eager to be done with the cost of the occupation, create
a Bizonia which then becomes the Federal Republic of Germany,
only this FRG has a clause in the Constitution like Japan, renoun-
cing an army and all that. Whether the French allow their zone to
participate is another question.
So, who ends up running the place? The local communists had been pretty
thoroughly squashed under Hitler, but the place is going to be a really
horrible mess, what with the nukings and all. Throw in French and
Polish and Czeck looting of the place, and a US reluctant to spend big
bucks on reconstruction, perhaps deindustrialization as well - not very
good prospects for economic stability. Ex-Nazis armed by French and
British to supress rioting mobs as unemployment tops 40%...looks ugly.

best,
Bruce

[1]Some sort of Red Army/Neo-Communist whatever regime is moving in as
Germans move out. Do the Germans try to create as much chaos as
possible by arming to the teeth every single anti-Soviet individual
they can find?
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-08 16:16:26 UTC
Permalink
***@eve.albany.edu wrote:

[alt-Russia]
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Options would seem to be a military dictatorship, some sort of
Communist regime, any mix of the two previous or total anarchy: given
the likelihood that Germany doesn't occupy all of the USSR out to
Vladivostok and the Afghan border, I'd find the last unlikely,
although
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
any sort of rump regime that establishes itself beyond German control
might have fun with rebellion breaking out in central Asia.
It's a nominally military junta, White in look-and-feel but with the
Communist nomenklatura still firmly in position below the top level.
(The experience of 1989-present suggests that these groups are
incredibly tenacious; you have to literally purge them, and a new and
shaky government won't find that easy.)

Oligarchic, authoritarian, corrupt, hyper-nationalist. The Orthodox
Church is once again part of the formal power structure. But White
emigres aren't necessarily welcome.

It's a bit anarchic at first. Eventually the Highlander Principle will
kick in, and a leader -- or, perhaps, a Leader -- will emerge.

N.B., from March '43 to... oh, late '45, *Russia is confined behind the
Urals. They re-enter the war in its final months. This gains them a
seat at the table and the ability to reclaim all of their pre-1939
boundaries except for Ukraine.

Ukraine has been an independent Nazi puppet state since 1942, and --
hum -- the Russians have recognized it in the peace treaty, albeit at
gunpoint. And the Allies may find it convenient to have an independent
Ukraine. Certainly the Poles and the Finns will argue for it.
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Soviet Generals - how
indoctrinated? I mean, likelier to set up at least nominally
"socialist" regime than simply going fascist?
Fairly. But they all grew up under Tsarist Russia, and old habits die
hard.
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
In the case of total chaos and civil war in the areas beyong German
control - who else has the organization to compete with the
Communists?
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
I have some difficulty in seeing, say, a "return to the Czar" faction
winning out.
Not at all. Again, it's a military junta (and at least two coups
removed from whoever took over after Stalin went down).

And, yes, it's very Red-tinged. Though externally, it'll present as
one part White, one part fascist. (What's brown and white on the
outside and red on the inside?)
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
And, once again, let's not forget Mao! (Thought here: with Korea being
liberated purely by US forces in this TL, does the US end up
supporting
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Chiang in Manchuria? Is this enough to change the outcome of the
Chinese civil war?)
Probably not and probably not, would be my guess.
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Re the Ukraine, if the US is isolationist, what odds that the new
Russian state tries to sieze it once they get on their feet? Will the
British and French resist this? The Poles?
Those are all darn good questions. Anyone?


Doug M.
c***@aol.com
2005-02-08 19:02:38 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
[alt-Russia]
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Options would seem to be a military dictatorship, some sort of
Communist regime, any mix of the two previous or total anarchy: given
the likelihood that Germany doesn't occupy all of the USSR out to
Vladivostok and the Afghan border, I'd find the last unlikely,
although
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
any sort of rump regime that establishes itself beyond German control
might have fun with rebellion breaking out in central Asia.
It's a nominally military junta, White in look-and-feel but with the
Communist nomenklatura still firmly in position below the top level.
My nominee is still Feodor Tolbuhkin, who actually was posted to the
Urals in the crisis period of the Soviet Union's collapse in the ATL.
(Hey, sometimes Turtledove got right, surprise surprise.) A Yaroslav
lad, a relatively humane man for a Red Army commander. (Though I
imagine you could find some people where you are, Doug, who tell a
different tale) Mikoyan seems like just the right sort of man to have
come with him, with his ties to the Army in this period.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
(The experience of 1989-present suggests that these groups are
incredibly tenacious; you have to literally purge them, and a new and
shaky government won't find that easy.)
Indeed. And there will certainly be a _lot_ of Party men fleeing east,
given the fact that it'll be a death sentence in most of German
occupied Russia. Can't have jobs for all of them, though.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Oligarchic, authoritarian, corrupt, hyper-nationalist. The Orthodox
Church is once again part of the formal power structure. But White
emigres aren't necessarily welcome.
White volunteer battalions=Operation Hide Behind the Capitalists!
Everybody wins.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
N.B., from March '43 to... oh, late '45, *Russia is confined behind the
Urals. They re-enter the war in its final months. This gains them a
seat at the table and the ability to reclaim all of their pre-1939
boundaries except for Ukraine.
Yah. I'm seeing a series of spectacular purges/pogroms from '46 on.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Ukraine has been an independent Nazi puppet state since 1942, and --
hum -- the Russians have recognized it in the peace treaty, albeit at
gunpoint. And the Allies may find it convenient to have an
independent
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Ukraine. Certainly the Poles and the Finns will argue for it.
Um. "You know that Nazi puppet state? I am in favor of retaining it." A
hard sell back home, though maybe not to urban ethnic voters. And what
do the Allies care for what the Finns say?
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
And, once again, let's not forget Mao! (Thought here: with Korea
being
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
liberated purely by US forces in this TL, does the US end up
supporting
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Chiang in Manchuria? Is this enough to change the outcome of the
Chinese civil war?)
Probably not and probably not, would be my guess.
Communism as an ideology of the outlier states, interesting...
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Re the Ukraine, if the US is isolationist, what odds that the new
Russian state tries to sieze it once they get on their feet? Will the
British and French resist this? The Poles?
Those are all darn good questions. Anyone?
I think the Russians will want the Ukraine back, if nothing else out of
an urge for sheer payback.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Doug M.
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-08 21:06:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@aol.com
My nominee is still Feodor Tolbuhkin, who actually was posted to the
Urals in the crisis period of the Soviet Union's collapse in the ATL.
Sure. Why not?
Post by c***@aol.com
A Yaroslav
lad, a relatively humane man for a Red Army commander. (Though I
imagine you could find some people where you are, Doug, who tell a
different tale)
The history of that period is still being (re)written out here.
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
(The experience of 1989-present suggests that these groups are
incredibly tenacious; you have to literally purge them, and a new and
shaky government won't find that easy.)
Indeed. And there will certainly be a _lot_ of Party men fleeing east,
given the fact that it'll be a death sentence in most of German
occupied Russia. Can't have jobs for all of them, though.
Sure you can! Though these jobs may involve hefting a gun, or possibly
a hammer on a chain gang.

N.B., the new state inherits pretty much all of the gulag system.
Throw open the gates, break the chains, feed the hungry? Why am I not
optimistic here?


[Ukraine]
Post by c***@aol.com
Um. "You know that Nazi puppet state? I am in favor of retaining it."
Turn it around.

"Those Russians? The ones who connived with Hitler, picked on every
helpless neutral within reach, and then folded like origami when push
came to shove? Now they want back everything they had, and they want
us to enforce it."

"Do we even know who these people are?"

"They're the ones who took over after the ones who killed the ones who
killed that other guy, got put up against a wall and shot."

"Ummm..."
Post by c***@aol.com
hard sell back home, though maybe not to urban ethnic voters. And what
do the Allies care for what the Finns say?
That's "brave Finnish allies" to you. The last phase of the war sees a
lot of side-switching, some successful (Finland), some less so
(Russia), and some horribly not (Romania).

The Ukrainian puppet state would be interesting because it would be
formally neutral. Hitler wouldn't /want/ them on his side. (Seriously.
cf. his treatment of the White Army and other USSR Slavic units OTL.)
So while nobody recognizes them (except the other Axis powers, and the
Russians), they're not at war with anyone. And the Allies are a long
way away.

So the Russians roll up to the border in early '46; the UPS does...
what?

Note that this is not the Red Army we're talking about here. They've
lost Moscow, been through a lost war and a couple of rounds of civil
war. By now they're something more like Denikin on steroids. Bandits
with tanks. So defiance is an option, though maybe not such a smart
one.

It's contingent, I think. Are the New Russian leaders smart enough to
use both carrot and stick? Because if not, then the UPS might just
fight. Remember, pretty much all the leadership is either German
quislings, Ukrainian nationalists, or both, so they're not exactly
going to welcome the Off-White Army back. "Hi, welcome back to Mother
Russia! You and you and you, you're dead. And you with the
typewriter. No, don't bother getting up. Good-bye."
Post by c***@aol.com
Communism as an ideology of the outlier states, interesting...
Isn't it, though?

And, you know, it makes more sense. Or is at least less weird than the
historical development of Communism OTL.


Doug M.
c***@aol.com
2005-02-08 21:59:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
(The experience of 1989-present suggests that these groups are
incredibly tenacious; you have to literally purge them, and a new
and
Post by c***@aol.com
Post by s***@yahoo.com
shaky government won't find that easy.)
Indeed. And there will certainly be a _lot_ of Party men fleeing
east,
Post by c***@aol.com
given the fact that it'll be a death sentence in most of German
occupied Russia. Can't have jobs for all of them, though.
Sure you can! Though these jobs may involve hefting a gun, or
possibly
Post by s***@yahoo.com
a hammer on a chain gang.
Well, I was thinking Party jobs. {ka-click) Uh, not that being a
Stakhanovite isn't a job befitting the talents of a soldier of the
Post by s***@yahoo.com
N.B., the new state inherits pretty much all of the gulag system.
Throw open the gates, break the chains, feed the hungry? Why am I not
optimistic here?
Forcible draft? Stay alive until the fascists are gone, Ivan D, and
your freedom is yours. But then you get the problem of all these troops
who may not be the most loyal to restoring the Motherland. OTOH, you've
got all those jobless Party men running around to act as commissars.
Hooray!

Or _all_ manual labor is performed by prisoners. Keep expanding that
Parchman's Farm/Kolyma analogy and you get to a wonderfully creepy sort
of place. And then when they move west again, there are all these
collaborators to put in the same place.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
[Ukraine]
Post by c***@aol.com
Um. "You know that Nazi puppet state? I am in favor of retaining it."
Turn it around.
"Those Russians? The ones who connived with Hitler, picked on every
helpless neutral within reach, and then folded like origami when push
came to shove? Now they want back everything they had, and they want
us to enforce it."
"Do we even know who these people are?"
"They're the ones who took over after the ones who killed the ones who
killed that other guy, got put up against a wall and shot."
"Ummm..."
"But, uh, at least the Russians weren't actually Nazi collaborators,
right? Not like those guys in Kiev. Didn't there used to be a lot of
Jews in the Ukraine? Man, look at that picture of the Ukranian
President posed with all those dead Gypsies, that was kind of a bad
propaganda move. And you know, honestly, the Finns were Nazi allies
until just last week, and they didn't need to get invaded for it. Screw
'em. At least the Russians put bodies on the line to stop Hitler."
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by c***@aol.com
hard sell back home, though maybe not to urban ethnic voters. And
what
Post by c***@aol.com
do the Allies care for what the Finns say?
That's "brave Finnish allies" to you. The last phase of the war sees a
lot of side-switching, some successful (Finland), some less so
(Russia), and some horribly not (Romania).
Why would the Finns be successful? FaT aside, if Vichy France had
successfully switched sides and joined the Allies, would FDR _really_
have let Petain/Darlan stay in power? No one likes a gate-crasher,
particularly someone who was just with the Nazis until last week.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
The Ukrainian puppet state would be interesting because it would be
formally neutral. Hitler wouldn't /want/ them on his side.
(Seriously.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
cf. his treatment of the White Army and other USSR Slavic units OTL.)
So while nobody recognizes them (except the other Axis powers, and the
Russians), they're not at war with anyone. And the Allies are a long
way away.
But, damn, the collaboration. Especially with the Holocaust.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
So the Russians roll up to the border in early '46; the UPS does...
what?
Note that this is not the Red Army we're talking about here. They've
lost Moscow, been through a lost war and a couple of rounds of civil
war. By now they're something more like Denikin on steroids.
Bandits
Post by s***@yahoo.com
with tanks. So defiance is an option, though maybe not such a smart
one.
Well, it took a while to break them even in OTL...
Post by s***@yahoo.com
It's contingent, I think. Are the New Russian leaders smart enough to
use both carrot and stick? Because if not, then the UPS might just
fight. Remember, pretty much all the leadership is either German
quislings, Ukrainian nationalists, or both, so they're not exactly
going to welcome the Off-White Army back. "Hi, welcome back to Mother
Russia! You and you and you, you're dead. And you with the
typewriter. No, don't bother getting up. Good-bye."
I think the best you'd get is "Let us back in or we will shoot you all
dead in the name of the motherland. In fact, you'd better be gone by
the time we get there...look, they're oppressing ethnic Russians!"
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by c***@aol.com
Communism as an ideology of the outlier states, interesting...
Isn't it, though?
And Father Mao is the Great Helmsman. Hmmm....
Post by s***@yahoo.com
And, you know, it makes more sense. Or is at least less weird than the
historical development of Communism OTL.
Doug M.
j***@faf.mil.fi
2005-02-09 11:02:10 UTC
Permalink
Dear God, this is getting tangled. Time is limited, so I won't even
attempt to make sense of the big picture; I'll just simply make a few
Post by s***@yahoo.com
And the Allies may find it convenient to have an
independent Ukraine. Certainly the Poles and the
Finns will argue for it.
Um? The Polish government-in-exile and the Polish Home Army are going
to emerge defending an independent Ukrainian state, after first
denouncing both the OUN and the UPA as criminal separatists and
terrorists for ages, and having actually fought some three to four
years' long, extremely bloody and costly underground campaign against
them?

And not just _any_ independent Ukrainian state, but one established as
a satellite of the Third Reich? And who handwaved that in, and how?

And why on earth would any plausible post-war Finnish government give a
damn of what happens to Ukraine?
Post by s***@yahoo.com
And what do the Allies care for what the Finns say?
No, Chet, the correct question would be "what do the Finns care for
Ukraine"? A distant country usually regarded as an integral part of
Russia is somehow going to become a target of attention for the Finnish
government?
Post by s***@yahoo.com
"And you know, honestly, the Finns were Nazi allies
until just last week, and they didn't need to get
invaded for it."
All right, now I'm clueless. Who is supposed to be quoted here?
Post by s***@yahoo.com
That's "brave Finnish allies" to you. The last phase
of the war sees a lot of side-switching, some successful
(Finland)...
"Side-switching" in what sense, really? With the Soviet Union
collapsed, why wouldn't Finland simply be removed from the equation
completely and altogether? What particular _reason_ would there be for
Britain and its dominions to continue their nominal state of war
against Finland, given that the declaration of war was originally a
goodwill gesture towards the USSR (which isn't supposed to exist
anymore)?

Are you postulating an actual Finnish entry to the war against the
Third Reich on the side of the Western Allies? Why? How?

The most likely scenario would, I think, be a gradual withdrawal of
German forces from North Finland after the suggested Soviet collapse.
Basic reallocation of troops for occupation duties in conquered Russia,
as well as for preparations in West Europe and the Balkans; a token of
German army and air force units would be left to safeguard the coast of
Norway and the nickel mines, but other than that, not much.

In this context, the state of war against Britain inevitably fades to
the background - and obviously, there is no state of war against the
United States to begin with, either.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Why would the Finns be successful?
Because the same feat was managed in our timeline, with far worse odds?


But, again, _why_ would Finland enter in a war against Germany in this
timeline? For all practical purposes, the country would have most
likely remained out of any subsequent fighting in this timeline. And
after the German collapse, all remaining German forces in the northern
part of the country could be quickly interned and removed from the
country. Assuming that there would be some kind of an alt-Lapland War -
which I doubt - it should be really a quick, low-profile affair.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
FaT aside, if Vichy France had successfully switched
sides and joined the Allies, would FDR _really_ have
let Petain/Darlan stay in power? No one likes a gate-
crasher, particularly someone who was just with the
Nazis until last week.
Eh? Are you actually attempting a comparison between Finland and the
Vichy France, and suggesting that the Western Allies would, for some
reason, at least demand the removal of the wartime Finnish
government?Just what exactly _are_ you two people getting at?

Now, I'm not Phil Edwards [1], but I must say that I think you folks
are going a bit too far and a bit too fast, and not paying the
necessary attention to the signs beside the road. You might wish to
remain somewhat less hasty when drawing your conclusions, just in order
to preserve the necessary systemacy and consistency of your
speculation.



Cheers,
Jalonen



[1] ... whose deep irritation with this "indecent handwaving of the
Soviet Communism out of history" I found quite amusing. Especially that
"indecent". Man, that was priceless.
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-09 12:38:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Dear God, this is getting tangled.
Yeah.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Um? The Polish government-in-exile and the Polish Home Army are going
to emerge defending an independent Ukrainian state, after first
denouncing both the OUN and the UPA as criminal separatists and
terrorists for ages, and having actually fought some three to four
years' long, extremely bloody and costly underground campaign against
them?
'coz it would be Really Nice for Poland to share part of its eastern
border with a weak Ukraine, as opposed to with the Russians all over
again?
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
And not just _any_ independent Ukrainian state, but one established as
a satellite of the Third Reich? And who handwaved that in, and how?
Me, and there are precedents. I'd point to the Nedic government of
Serbia as one, and rump Slovakia as another.

In the long run Hitler wanted to annex some (not clearly defined)
portion of Ukraine. In the short-to-medium term, though, a puppet state
makes a lot of sense. Put some local fascists in charge
(because-there-are-always-local-Fascists), free up some garrison
troops.

As noted elsewhere, I've come to have doubts about the long-term
viability of Free Ukraine. But that's another issue.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
Post by s***@yahoo.com
That's "brave Finnish allies" to you. The last phase
of the war sees a lot of side-switching, some successful
(Finland)...
"Side-switching" in what sense, really? With the Soviet Union
collapsed, why wouldn't Finland simply be removed from the equation
completely and altogether? What particular _reason_ would there be for
Britain and its dominions to continue their nominal state of war
against Finland, given that the declaration of war was originally a
goodwill gesture towards the USSR (which isn't supposed to exist
anymore)?
Noel's rule (which I think is a good one) is that, anything that
doesn't pretty clearly evolve out of the initial POD should be kept
constant. Otherwise we'll end up smothered in butterflies.

Right? Well, then: it's stipulated that the war in the East continues
at full blast until at least March 1943. So, as of December '41, even
though Stalin may be dead and Moscow/Leningrad falling or fallen, the
war is still raging. Therefore, a British declaration of war against
Finland, Hungary and Romania is still on, just as iOTL.

Then how does Finland get out of being formally at war with the Allies?
My answer is that they switch sides late in the war, after the A-bombs
have started falling, the Allies are deep into Western Europe, and most
German troops have left the neighborhood.

Note that I have Romania trying the same trick, and failing.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
But, again, _why_ would Finland enter in a war against Germany in this
timeline? For all practical purposes, the country would have most
likely remained out of any subsequent fighting in this timeline.
Again, the assumption is that the war in the East continues into March
1943, with fierce fighting right up the the final days. So, in this TL
Finland has been an active participant in the defeat of the USSR, and
is at war with all the major Allies.
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
From the time the front moves east out of Karelia -- sometime in '42?
-- Finland's actual participation will be minimal. Nevertheless,
they'll still be at war with the Allies. (Though the final German
treaty with the Russians in 1943 may require *Russia to make peace with
the German allies as well.)
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
suggesting that the Western Allies would, for some
reason, at least demand the removal of the wartime Finnish
government?Just what exactly _are_ you two people getting at?
I'm not. My assumption is that the Finns are, if not welcomed with
open arms, at least cordially greeted. The Allies need feet on the
ground in the East, and there are recriminations over the failure to
help Romania a couple of months earlier.

Finland switched sides OTL, no? Declared war on Germany in March 1945,
right? And had been a friendly neutral -- letting Soviet submarines
operate from Finnish ports, for instance -- since the previous autumn.

So why is this so wildly improbable?
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
[1] ... whose deep irritation with this "indecent handwaving of the
Soviet Communism out of history" I found quite amusing. Especially that
"indecent". Man, that was priceless.
"The US and Britain had plenty of crimes to their names, too... the
alternative to Soviet victory over the Nazis was Nazi victory over the
USSR, which would have been a disaster of almost unimaginable
proportions."

I have the feeling that we're not being aghast enough.

FWIW, I've been rather pleased that this thread has (so far) not
attracted members of the Usual Suspects, posting to let us know that
without the USSR it would all be SOOO GOOD happy shiny free world! If
only it had been so! We'd be terraforming Venus by now! Go Team!

[shrug] What can you do.


Doug M.
Cori Davis
2005-02-09 15:02:59 UTC
Permalink
Jussi will correct me if I'm wrong, but the handwave he (and everyone
else sees) is everyone not welcoming the death of Free Ukraine. No one
likes collaborators.
Phil Edwards
2005-02-09 18:18:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by j***@faf.mil.fi
[1] ... whose deep irritation with this "indecent handwaving of the
Soviet Communism out of history" I found quite amusing. Especially that
"indecent". Man, that was priceless.
"The US and Britain had plenty of crimes to their names, too... the
alternative to Soviet victory over the Nazis was Nazi victory over the
USSR, which would have been a disaster of almost unimaginable
proportions."
I have the feeling that we're not being aghast enough.
If you want to talk behind someone's back, Doug, there's always email.
(Which is probably where this conversation should go, too.)

Phil
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-09 18:26:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by Phil Edwards
Post by s***@yahoo.com
I have the feeling that we're not being aghast enough.
If you want to talk behind someone's back, Doug, there's always email.
[blinks] How is Usenet "behind someone's back"?

I couldn't get more in front of you without hopping on a plane to
Wales.


Doug M.
Phil Edwards
2005-02-09 18:55:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Phil Edwards
Post by s***@yahoo.com
I have the feeling that we're not being aghast enough.
If you want to talk behind someone's back, Doug, there's always email.
[blinks] How is Usenet "behind someone's back"?
That was precisely my point.

But, OK, it's a public forum. So you have the feeling that 'we' aren't
being sufficiently aghast. Who's 'we'? Aghast with whom or what? And
what would be aghast 'enough'?

Phil
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
Cori Davis
2005-02-09 15:05:20 UTC
Permalink
Aw, I did get a little full of rhetorical high spirits there[1]. My
bad.

My general point was about the Ukraine, not Finland. You've convinced
me that Finland would successfully switch sides, even if they do still
wind up at war with the Western Allies. Moscow frets and plots about
Karelia, but frankly they've got bigger fish to fry. Like Kiev.

[1] Which is to say "full of crap."
Phil Edwards
2005-02-09 18:11:37 UTC
Permalink
Now, I'm not Phil Edwards [1] but I must say that I think you folks
are going a bit too far and a bit too fast
I'd just like to confirm that Jussi is in fact not me.
[1] ... whose deep irritation with this "indecent handwaving of the
Soviet Communism out of history" I found quite amusing. Especially that
"indecent". Man, that was priceless.
It was the haste that I found indecent, actually. It's a frothier
version of "going a bit too far and a bit too fast".

Phil
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
Phil Edwards
2005-02-08 23:37:48 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Note that this is not the Red Army we're talking about here. They've
lost Moscow, been through a lost war and a couple of rounds of civil
war. By now they're something more like Denikin on steroids.
I think I'm out of this thread. You're handwaving the Communism of the
USSR out of history, with a haste which seems not only indecent but
absurd. I simply don't believe that anything short of a total military
defeat (impossible before 1945, I think we agree) would put a
non-Communist government in charge of Russia, let alone gain
diplomatic recognition for a non-Communist Russian government.

When I did my English degree, my single best tutor was this incredibly
annoying guy who insisted we looked at the actual words on the page.
His catchphrase was 'Show me'. "He idealises and romanticises her?
Show me where it says so in the text." Annoying, but very useful. We
haven't got a text here, obviously, but still: a non-Communist Russia
in 1945? International recognition of a non-Communist Russia in 1945?
The war's over and there's no Soviet Union? Show me how you get there.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by c***@aol.com
Communism as an ideology of the outlier states, interesting...
Isn't it, though?
And, you know, it makes more sense. Or is at least less weird than the
historical development of Communism OTL.
We seem to be using a different definition of 'weird'.

PHil
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
Cori Davis
2005-02-09 00:05:53 UTC
Permalink
Aw, losing you would certainly suck, Phil. If it helps, I think
Off-White is a bad choice of words to describe the politics and social
structure of the eventual Russian state. The Army is the largest
coherent element of Soviet society to survive the Great Patriotic War,
so naturally the Russian state winds up being organized along military
lines. I put Mikoyan and Tolbukhin in charge of the successor state if
only because Mikoyan seems to have been the most geninuely
anti-Stalinist of Stalin's Men post-1953.

So the Russian state probably still calls itself the USSR, though it
will certainly have a very different governing style, enough that you
could reasonably talk about it as a successor state. Certainly
Tolbukhin and

My personal timeline was something like:

6/30/1941 Stalin dies.
Summer-Fall 1941 The "Regency Council" of Beria, Molotov, and
Voroshilov says Oh, shit. The Red Army is cut apart worse and worse,
and the conflicts between the three men at the top do not help. The
Germans get closer and closer to Moscow.
Winter 1941 Beria panics and tries to purge his rivals with the Germans
close enough to see the spires of the Kremlin. There is a botched
evacuation, a general moves against Beria, and Moscow falls to the
Germans.

By the time things get sorted out again, the nearest coherent
government is in Siberia and the Germans have annexed everything up to
the Urals. OK, certainly not likely...but, hell, WWII in OTL was pretty
damn unlikely.
j***@faf.mil.fi
2005-02-09 11:10:34 UTC
Permalink
Post by Cori Davis
6/30/1941 Stalin dies.
... in which case, as an addendum to the comment I made, there will be
no British declaration of war against Finland in 12/6/1941.

Oh, and it's nice to see you posting here, Cori. Best wishes to your
husband.


Cheers,
Jalonen
c***@aol.com
2005-02-09 14:26:13 UTC
Permalink
Actually, that was me. Damn GMail accounts, I could have sworn I signed
off that time. She says hi to you folks, though.

OK, so take back what I said about Finland earlier. I think the Russian
leadership will honestly have bigger fish to fry than Finland, so for
now Tolbukhin doesn't raise an unseemly fuss about Karelia. (But it
will be on everyone's mind in Omsk, or Moscow, or wherever. And
Helsinki will have the same idea.)
Noel
2005-02-09 01:12:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by Phil Edwards
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Note that this is not the Red Army we're talking about here.
They've
Post by Phil Edwards
Post by s***@yahoo.com
lost Moscow, been through a lost war and a couple of rounds of civil
war. By now they're something more like Denikin on steroids.
I think I'm out of this thread.
---Phil, this is Doug Muir you're talking about.
"Show me" is a good philosophy, but I don't think
that he deserves the "I walk away from your obtuse-
ness, you piece of neutronium, you" treatment.

All the best,

Noel
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-09 08:35:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Phil Edwards
I think I'm out of this thread. You're handwaving the Communism of the
USSR out of history, with a haste which seems not only indecent but
absurd.
Mm, yes. It's almost like handwaving the Czar away in 1917. Or
Communism as a tool of Great Russian imperialism in 1989. Or Soviet
Communism itself in 1992.

Pretty unlikely, yes.
Post by Phil Edwards
I simply don't believe that anything short of a total military
defeat (impossible before 1945, I think we agree) would put a
non-Communist government in charge of Russia, let alone gain
diplomatic recognition for a non-Communist Russian government.
Well, "simply don't believe". Hm.
Post by Phil Edwards
When I did my English degree, my single best tutor was this
incredibly
Post by Phil Edwards
annoying guy who insisted we looked at the actual words on the page.
His catchphrase was 'Show me'. "He idealises and romanticises her?
Show me where it says so in the text." Annoying, but very useful.
While I'm all in favor of analytical rigor in literary criticism, it's
a pretty weak analogy for allohistory. Especially in an inherently
dialectical medium like Usenet. If Chet or Noel or Randy can make a
prima facie first-blush case for plausibility, then IMO they're allowed
to sit back and say, "your move".

Why should the entire burden be on the part of the propounder? Chet's
given a reasonable first lick at the problem. All we've heard from you
so far is, quote, simply don't believe, end quote.

That won't do, really.
Post by Phil Edwards
a non-Communist Russia in 1945?
And why is this so difficult?

No offense, Phil, but I'm getting the same vibe I got a while back on
the Michael Foot TL. I think you really /don't like/ this idea. Which
is fine. But please don't try to express your revulsion as a sudden
attack of metaphysical rectitude.

You had no problem with my Djilas TL, right? That was IMO at the same
level of (im)plausibility. Personality transplant for Djilas, wildly
improbable carelessness on Tito's part, rest of the Party lets him get
away with it, Stalin allows himself to be scammed... I enjoyed it, but
I had trouble believing in it. But we all went forward because it
wasn't utterly and obviously ridiculous, and it did go in some
interesting directions.

So what's the diff?
Post by Phil Edwards
International recognition of a non-Communist Russia in 1945?
Oh for goodness' sake. That would follow as day follows dawn.


Doug M.
Cori Davis
2005-02-09 14:56:38 UTC
Permalink
Well, it is worth making clear that we're not talking about Russia
turning into a straight-up military junta, or a happy democracy. Which
was the Latin American country that had a "military socialist"
government? I think something like that is the most likely direction
for the fUSSR to proceed. But yeah, a Russian government that is at
least covertly anti-Nazi, that joins the war again as soon as they can,
why wouldn't the Allies recognize them?
Phil Edwards
2005-02-09 17:25:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
No offense, Phil, but I'm getting the same vibe I got a while back on
the Michael Foot TL. I think you really /don't like/ this idea. Which
is fine. But please don't try to express your revulsion as a sudden
attack of metaphysical rectitude.
None taken. Part of what I was trying to get across - obviously
without much success - was, precisely, that I really don't like this
idea, and that I'll find it difficult to contribute to a thread which
takes it as an unproblematic starting point. I'm not claiming the
mantle of God's-eye-view metaphysical rectitude, certainly not. But I
don't think I'm a romantic ideologue who can't handle the truth,
either. We all have biases - in the context of AH, we all have
possibilities we find plausible because we want them to be possible -
and I think in this case mine and yours are pulling in diametrically
opposite directions. So I'll probably leave this thread alone.

Phil
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-09 18:00:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by Phil Edwards
We all have biases - in the context of AH, we all have
possibilities we find plausible because we want them to be possible -
and I think in this case mine and yours are pulling in diametrically
opposite directions.
You'd be surprised. I mean, I think you really would be surprised.

Putting aside the extra... I don't know... five million more dead?
Ten? And the Holocaust going about as far as it possibly could, and a
dozen or more atomic bombings instead of two, and a US that's either
obnoxiously triumphalist or letting the rest of the world go to hell,
or maybe both. Putting all that aside, I'm not sure this is a 'net
better' TL.

I mean, really, not sure. Right now we're sort of bogged down setting
starting conditions. Which is fine. But at some point I'd like to
step back and say, okay, 50 years later... how are things? Because at
the moment, I'm not at all certain.

As to 'diametrically opposite'... Phil, this isn't the first time
you've cast that aspersion, but, well, I wish you'd quit it, because
it's just not so. Orthogonal, maybe. Opposite, no.


-- BTW, 'FDR Died' was, among other things, my own attempt to do a TL
that I really hated. Not a complete success in my own eyes, and
sometimes I got creeped out just from trying. (The wingers who blew up
Felix Frankfurter? I had to make them comic characters, because
writing it straight was too damn depressing). But FWIW, it resulted in
some of the posts that I like the best.

So, I'd encourage you to at least reconsider.


Doug M.
Phil Edwards
2005-02-09 20:33:08 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Phil Edwards
We all have biases - in the context of AH, we all have
possibilities we find plausible because we want them to be possible -
and I think in this case mine and yours are pulling in diametrically
opposite directions.
<...>
Post by s***@yahoo.com
As to 'diametrically opposite'... Phil, this isn't the first time
you've cast that aspersion, but, well, I wish you'd quit it, because
it's just not so. Orthogonal, maybe. Opposite, no.
I don't know why you think it's an aspersion. I'm not saying anything
about your politics - politically, I consider you to be a damn sight
closer to me than many, if not most, of the non-UKian posters here
(those who have dropped any clues, that is). I'm saying that /in this
case/ our respective biases are /pulling/ in opposite directions.

Imagine you've got someone who believes that Russian Communism could
have gone up in smoke at any moment, and that the only problem with
OTL's collapse was that it didn't happen a lot sooner. And imagine
someone else who believes that Russian Communism had roots like
Yggdrasill the World Tree, and that OTL's collapse could and should
have been postponed indefinitely. It's hard to imagine those two
people having a constructive discussion about an AH collapse of
Russian Communism; it's easier to imagine a heated and ultimately
rather theological argument. I'm not saying you're the first of those
people - or that I'm the second - but I think our starting points are
quite a long way apart on this one, and that they'd get in the way.

Incidentally, you describe this TL - in which the Nazis don't even get
to win - in terms of
Post by s***@yahoo.com
the extra... I don't know... five million more dead?
Ten? And the Holocaust going about as far as it possibly could, and a
dozen or more atomic bombings instead of two, and a US that's either
obnoxiously triumphalist or letting the rest of the world go to hell,
or maybe both.
But elsewhere you seemed... well, 'aghast' was your word... at the
judgment that
Post by s***@yahoo.com
the alternative to Soviet victory over the Nazis was Nazi victory over the
USSR, which would have been a disaster of almost unimaginable proportions.
Which, try as I might, just doesn't seem that controversial to me.
Particularly if the third way of a two-way defeat - which I admit I
hadn't imagined - looks so ghastly.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
So, I'd encourage you to at least reconsider.
Well, I'll read on. I've still got to get back to Noel on Italy '47.

yz, sine ira but with a reasonable amount of studio[1],

Phil
[1] Meaning 'partisanship' in this context.
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
c***@aol.com
2005-02-09 19:07:10 UTC
Permalink
Hmm.

Phil, what don't you find plausible about the TL? Why?
b***@eve.albany.edu
2005-02-08 22:06:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Ukraine has been an independent Nazi puppet state since 1942, and --
hum -- the Russians have recognized it in the peace treaty, albeit at
gunpoint.
Who's gunpoint? Do the Allied occupying troops march all the way to
Kiev? Or does the US wave the big stick at the Russians?
Admittedly, it probably doesn't take too much allied pushing to
convince the Russians to hold off on reconquering the Ukraine: they may
have their hands fairly full trying to establish control in Russia
proper and the trans-Caucuses for a while. (Any chance the British
might try to support Georgian/Armenian/Azerbaijani independence?)

A few years later on, though: if the US is largely staying out of
Europe, France is busy with internal problems, and the UK doesn't have
the bomb yet, any "hyper-nationalist" regime worth it's salt is likely
to give grabbing the Ukraine a try. War with Poland, Finland, and the
Ukraine, perhaps?

If these states get any support from the British and French (who have
some interest in promoting a minimum of stability in Eastern Europe)
Russia quite possibly loses: "bandits with tanks", as you said in
another thread. (Other possibility: partition of the Ukraine with
Poland? Poles might go for it, but doubt the Russians would accept
Poland's return to it's 1760's borders).
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
And, once again, let's not forget Mao! (Thought here: with Korea
being
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
liberated purely by US forces in this TL, does the US end up
supporting
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Chiang in Manchuria? Is this enough to change the outcome of the
Chinese civil war?)
Probably not and probably not, would be my guess.
So we have a good chance of China going Red. One wonders how the
European communists (Yugoslavs and Albanians, possibly Greeks and
Italians)react to Mao's declaration of himself as the leader of
International Communism.

Does the US still save Taiwan for Chiang? With no Korean war and no
USSR, is there much of a "who lost China" debate? I have trouble seeing
US anticommunism in this TL being fierce enough to refuse recognition
of Red China, but there may still be quite a lot of fuss among people
who think the US could have saved Chiang's regime with a military
intervention.

What does the People's republic look like in this TL? Without the
Soviets to set himself off against, does Mao pursue more moderate
economic policies than OTL? Or, contrarily, does the lack of a
1949-late 50's Chinese-Soviet entente and a grudging acceptance of
Soviet "elder brother" status leave Mao feeling free to immediately set
off into new and unexplored realms of "Chinese-model" Communism and
great-leap-forward silliness?

China may also be less isolated internationally, with no later
Sino-Soviet split [1] and US recognition. On the other hand, the
presence of US troops along the Yalu (do the Koreans ask the US to stay
as insurance against the Chinese?) may lead to tensions.

Apropos of nothing: does anyone have any ideas what happens to Belgium
and the Netherlands? Communist takeover seems unlikely, but will local
democracy remain afloat during economic very hard times? Establishment
close ties with the UK?

best,
Bruce

[1] Although I imagine Sino-Russian relations may not be rosy: Russia
may look weak enough for Mao to decide to pursue Chinese territorial
claims, say in Outer Mongolia.
Noel
2005-02-09 01:54:48 UTC
Permalink
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Ukraine has been an independent Nazi puppet state since 1942, and --
hum -- the Russians have recognized it in the peace treaty, albeit at
gunpoint.
Who's gunpoint? Do the Allied occupying troops march all the way to
Kiev? Or does the US wave the big stick at the Russians?
Admittedly, it probably doesn't take too much allied pushing to
convince the Russians to hold off on reconquering the Ukraine: they may
have their hands fairly full trying to establish control in Russia
proper and the trans-Caucuses for a while. (Any chance the British
might try to support Georgian/Armenian/Azerbaijani independence?)
A few years later on, though: if the US is largely staying out of
Europe, France is busy with internal problems, and the UK doesn't have
the bomb yet, any "hyper-nationalist" regime worth it's salt is likely
to give grabbing the Ukraine a try. War with Poland, Finland, and the
Ukraine, perhaps?
If these states get any support from the British and French (who have
some interest in promoting a minimum of stability in Eastern Europe)
Russia quite possibly loses: "bandits with tanks", as you said in
another thread. (Other possibility: partition of the Ukraine with
Poland? Poles might go for it, but doubt the Russians would accept
Poland's return to it's 1760's borders).
---We have a lot of things to sort out before we get
there, but let me toss out a general principle: Britain
and France won't be in any position to help the Ukrainians.
France will likely be preoccupied in Indochina, and suffer-
ing its own serious economic problems. Britain won't be
militarily tied down, but it's going to also be very
seriously economically strapped: if they couldn't
support Greece in OTL, I don't see how they can
support Ukraine in ATL.

But like I said, we need to see what Italy and Russia
itself look like circa 1949.

Best,

Noel
c***@aol.com
2005-02-09 02:09:18 UTC
Permalink
I really don't see the Ukranian regime as lasting very long past the
fall of Berlin. No one likes Nazi collaborators, and if Tolbuhkin has
anything, he's got guns and men who know how to use them. Advisors,
volunteers, actions taken to protect the local Russian population,
which will all certainly be justified. The idea of the US recognizing
them is, ah, one of the less inspired ideas I've seen from Doug. Who in
the Dewey administration is going to say "Yes, I support this idea of
Nazi foriegn policy and keeping in power these people who helped the
Nazis loot their country and kill their Jewish population. By all
means, let's keep our wartime ally from retaking their lost territory."
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-09 07:31:54 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@aol.com
The idea of the US recognizing
them is, ah, one of the less inspired ideas I've seen from Doug.
[blinks] Did I at any point say that the US had recognized them?

Possibly some confusion here; I was talking about de facto
independence, not de jure, at least in the immediate postwar period.

Although, that said, I'm starting to think that the long-term prospects
for UPS are not great.


Doug M.
Good Habit
2005-02-09 17:21:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by Noel
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Ukraine has been an independent Nazi puppet state since 1942, and
Has it? - If the war goes better for Hitler, why the need for a puppet
regime,
Ukraine is the core of the expanded German 'Lebensraum'.
Post by Noel
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Post by s***@yahoo.com
hum -- the Russians have recognized it in the peace treaty, albeit
at
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Post by s***@yahoo.com
gunpoint.
Which peace treaty? You mean an Alt-MEGA-Brest-Litowsk (line of
demarcation at the Ural) - I wouldn't believe in such an agreement at
all.. / or at the end of the war - out of the question that an
(unlikely) collaborator regime will be recognized by the allies.

Best chances for an independent Ukraine would be:
The Russians remain rather deorganized and chaotic during the latter
part of the war, and Ukraine is either liberated by a western
Expeditionary force during the war OR by Ukrainian partisans at the time
of the German surrender, which comes purely from the war in the West (as
at the end of WWI, but with even a Russian government even weaker than
the Bolsheviks were in November 18.
Post by Noel
Post by b***@eve.albany.edu
Who's gunpoint? Do the Allied occupying troops march all the way to
Kiev? Or does the US wave the big stick at the Russians?
Admittedly, it probably doesn't take too much allied pushing to
convince the Russians to hold off on reconquering the Ukraine: they
---We have a lot of things to sort out before we get
there, but let me toss out a general principle: Britain
and France won't be in any position to help the Ukrainians.
France will likely be preoccupied in Indochina,
This depends very much on how the Pacific war ended ITTL.

Without a major Soviet fighting force, a US "Japan first" strategy
doesn't seem so impossible. In that case, Japan might still surrender in
August 45, and most of SE-Asia be under American/British occupation,
before the war in the West really starts. So Indochina might be more or
less pro-western (even under President Ho Chi-Minh.)
In that case, however, the US-Government might loose interest in the War
in Europe sometime in 46, and we reach a "Fatherland" TL.

OR, the US hold on to "Germany first". In that case, after the first
nukes are used in Europe, Japan controls much more territory than IOTL,
but throws in the towel when it learns about the devastation in Europe.
As the western powers have very few boots on the ground in E-Asia, local
forces take over. As there is no cold war, there is no American support
for French adventures in Indochina, and so they are butterflied away.
Post by Noel
But like I said, we need to see what Italy and Russia
itself look like circa 1949.
Why should Italy turn communist? Even it the Italian campaign goes more
or less as IOTL, the collapse of the USSR will significantly weaken the
PCI, and the perspective of an independent communist takeover in a just
medium sized country isn't that promising. So there will be some
internal turmoil, but no chance of a communist Italy.

In Russia, local partisan commanders will likely play a major role
(especially if the "recognized" government of Russia did a Vichy and
signed a ceasefire, given the likely Nazi atrocities, this will be very
unpopular)- In that case, I could see a period of warlordism (different
guerilla commanders and turncoats from the Siberian government). If
there was never a treaty with the Germans, the country will most likely
be run by a military junta on a "patriotic" plattform, with much etatism
in economics, but a revival of the Orthodox church and other Russian
traditions.
Phil Edwards
2005-02-08 00:09:11 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
Italy may wind up Communist. Hell, it almost happened
in OTL. Here, no Marshall Plan, an uglier end to the war.
Communism exists along a Mediterranean axis from Italy
through Yugoslavia and Greece. (Does Yugoslavia annex
Albania with no Uncle Joe to say no?)
I think there's a short-lived Balkan federation of Yu, Alb and Bul.
Sort of like the United Arab Republics of OTL. It /might/ break up
peacefully.
Without getting into the plausibility of the PoD, this rings true to
me. I wonder who'd end up with the Macedonians?
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
My read of Italian history is that a Communist takeover
is more likely than not, but my read of Italian history is very
limited here. Thoughts?
Phil Edwards, we invoke you.
Hmm. It's nearly a very interesting scenario, but I'd need to know a
lot more about what's happened to the USSR between 1941 and 1945
before I could say much more. (And, indeed, what's happened to Eastern
and Central Europe in that period.) Has the Red Army been 'driven
back', or has it made a strategic retreat? (Could the Wehrmacht even
secure that much territory?) If the Red Army's withdrawn in good
order, what happens when the A-bombs fall on Berlin? (A rapid
counter-offensive, I suspect.) Or say the Red Army's been chewed up
beyond repair and the Wehrmacht is basically in charge of Moscow and
points West - the question then is still, what happens when the
A-bombs fall on Berlin? (Things could get very nasty for a lot of
people in this scenario, but this in itself would trigger a diplomatic
scramble to restore normality - which I think means restoring some
kind of Soviet Union.) Alternatively, say that Hitler's conquered the
USSR outright - the question then is, how the hell did he do that?

You won't eliminate the Soviet Union as a superpower and a political
point of reference in the first of these scenarios, and I'm not sure
that the second would do it - I can well imagine a *Potsdam after a
war like this, even if the Soviets hadn't been in any shape for
*Teheran. The third scenario isn't really on offer, as far I can see.

As for Italy, hmm again.
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Post by Noel
Italy may wind up Communist. Hell, it almost happened
in OTL.
No, it didn't. I went through this in detail nearly four years ago:
see <http://tinyurl.com/6aoy4>. From which:

|to get a Communist takeover in Italy, you have to disregard
|
|a) the actual level of popular support for the Communists
|b) the actual politics of the Communist Party
|c) the actual course of events in 1948
|and
|d) the actual international politics of the USSR

Saying it 'almost happened' is a bit like saying that Edward Kennedy
almost became President. In the ATL, of course, we can disregard d),
we've got a different c) and we might have a different a) and b). I
tend to think they wouldn't be different enough, though. Firstly, the
big losers from the American intervention in the 1948 elections -
which included massive propaganda use of Marshall Aid - weren't the
Communists; the Communist vote stayed remarkably steady from 1946 to
1963. The effect of the American intervention was to polarise the vote
between the Communists and the Christian Democrats; the losers were,
essentially, all the other parties (who took 39% of the vote in 1946
and 35% in 1953, but only 26% in 1948). Admittedly, you could argue
that the Communists lost in the sense that the Christian Democrats'
vote rose while theirs stayed the same, so that polarisation was
accompanied by an overall shift to the right. I'm just saying that
they didn't lose in the sense of their share of the vote going down.

As for Communist Party policy, most of the Italian Communist
leadership had been solidly committed to a coalition with the Right
since the 1920s, and seeing the USSR fold wouldn't strengthen the
radical elements of the party. This would also affect Party support.
Much of the appeal of the Party in the immediate post-war period
derived from its association with the USSR; if the record of the USSR
looks ignominious or dubious, that appeal will be considerably
reduced, and I wouldn't necessarily assume that the effects of
economic and social turmoil will counterbalance it. (There was a fair
amount of e. and s. t. in OTL, after all.)

The other question is, what happened in 1943? Is there an Italian
front in this TL, or a North African front? If not, why not?

Phil
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
b***@eve.albany.edu
2005-02-03 04:47:27 UTC
Permalink
Post by s***@yahoo.com
Note that in this TL, Yugoslavia and probably Albania are Communist the
moment the last German leaves or surrenders. Probably Greece too.
Communism in a TL where it's limited to a handful of small countries,
because the USSR has been crushed in WWII.
Hmm - I presume you're assuming that Someone Else than the Communists
take power in Russia after the German withdrawl. (I'd hardly call
Russia, even with, say, 1/3 of it's population killed off by the
Germans, a "small country".[1])
But who else has the organization to sieze power in the post-Nazi
chaos? Collaborators with the Germans are not going to be popular.

Bruce

[1] And let's not count Mao out so soon! Or does the Isolationist US
turn to it's traditional interest in the Orient, and intervene in a big
way in China? (That ought to be fun!)
r***@gmail.com
2005-02-03 04:33:01 UTC
Permalink
I was referring mainly to the Cold War-vintage division between rich
First World countries lucky enough not to be Communized and poorer
Second World countries unlucky enough.
Noel
2005-02-03 04:44:36 UTC
Permalink
Pardon me? I don't understand what you're referring to.

Best,

Noel
Phil Edwards
2005-02-07 23:14:43 UTC
Permalink
Post by Noel
Pardon me? I don't understand what you're referring to.
P "sic" E
--
Phil Edwards ***@amroth.zetnet.co.uk
"Is there any way to make John Calvin pope?"
- Steven J. thinks the unthinkable
Christian Seitz
2005-02-03 07:35:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by r***@gmail.com
One thing that never happened was a discussion about the consequences
of a German victory on the Eastern Front against the Soviet Union in
1941-1942.
Big problem this will butterfly away alot of things. There might be no
declaration of war against the US. The Luftwaffe will be much stronger
especially if the germans are smart enough to include some promising
soviet types. Manpower will be the biggest problem of them. Controling
the captures territories will be hard for them. I expect germany to
collapse on her own weight in 47-49.

Christian Seitz
c***@aol.com
2005-02-03 17:46:35 UTC
Permalink
Let's not forget that there is almost certainly going to be a
Republican President from 1945-1949 in this scenario. Let's say it's
Thomas Dewey, why not? A liberal internationalist, but one dependant on
the votes of conservative isolationist Republicans to get his bills
through Congress.

What if there is a *Soviet regime, but a terribly impoverished,
isolationist one? Say (rolls dice, hm) Mikoyan makes it to Lake Baikal
and organizes the anti-German resistance, then moves back to Moscow
after the Germans pull out to defend the Western Front. Mikoyan is
doing anything he can to get the country up and running
again...anything. Dun dun dun! It helps that Mikoyan isn't particularly
Stalinist, not anymore.
Good Habit
2005-02-04 22:02:24 UTC
Permalink
Let’s try a short scenario:

Everything goes as OTL until the fall of 1941, including Pearl Harbor
and the DoW of Germany/Italy against the US. But due to mismanagement –
or whatever – the Soviet counter offensive in winter 41/42 gets nowhere.
Heavy losses, little damage, almost no ground regained.

So, in the spring of 42, the Germans are much closer to Moscow – and
better prepared – than OTL. Therefore, the German offensive, starting in
may, is in the north and center of the front, not in the south. Group A
reaches the Volga near Jaroslaw and follows the West-Bank up to Gorki.
Group B marches from Woronesh towards Pensa and Uljanowsk. Moscow and
central Russia are enclosed, (until end of august), and the capital is
reduced to rubble by artillery and bombs. Late in October 42, German
forces enter Moscow. Much of the enclosed soviet forces disperse in to
the woods and turn in to guerillas. But the Soviet transport network is
broken, the Germans hold the railroad hub in Moscow, and several
bridgeheads at the east-bank of the Volga.

The disaster doesn’t increase Stalin’s popularity, and his grip on
power. Several local commanders declare him deposed, but operate more
ore less independently of each other. So we get the provisional
governments at Wologda, at Perm, at Orenburg, at Stawropol and one at
Omsk (at least), and a lot of independent Guerilla commanders behind
German lines.

The Western leaders dislike, what they see, and try to bolster up the
(competing) Russian governments as good as they can. So, late in 42, an
Expeditionary force A(US and ANZAC) (transported across Iran) reinforces
General X at Stawropol (the frontline at the Don) and an EF B (GB and
Canada) land and Archangelsk and Murmansk and, support General Y in
Wologda and the North-East shore of the Volga.

To have sufficient troops for this operations, they call off Torch, and
reduce operations in the Pacific to the absolute minimum.

In 1943, the war in the East continues. Allied group A pushes Northward
direction Charkow and reaches Kursk, while group B pushes southward
across the Leningrad – Moscow line and reaches Smolensk. So, in October
43, there is an eminent danger that the allied forces meet near Briansk
and cut off the bulk of the German army between Moscow and the Volga. So
the Germans try a hasty withdrawal, but many troops get caught and
slaughtered by partisans. At the end of the year, the frontline runs
from lake Ladoga to Smolensk, Charkow and Donezk. The different Russian
groups still have difficulty to form a joint government, and mop up the
remnants of the German army in central Russia. In eastern Ukraine, local
partisan commanders establish, with allied aid, a provisional Ukrainian
government.

Further to the West, 1943 sees no battle of Tunisia, no landing in
Sicily, Mussolini remains in power, but Vichy France is still not
occupied. Partisans in the Balkans, usually with communist leaders,
pronounce the patriotic character of their movement, when the center of
world communism isn’t around any more. At the turn of the year, Finland
switches sides...

In the spring of 44, the allies make no big gains in the East, as there
supply lines are long, the Russian army is still rather de-organized. In
the North the reach the Eastern-borders of the Baltic states, in the
south, with the help of the Ukrainians, the Dnjepr.

So, the allied commanders decide that the main front should be in the
West. On June 6, 1944, D’Day happens on schedule. Resistance is tougher,
but Normandy is in allied hands at the end of August, and now the
Vichy-French re-enter the war on the allied side. The positions in the
West are in a flux, but at the end of 44, the frontline is widely at the
Rhine. In the east, the gains remain moderate, but the Germans shift
troops to the western front, and so American and Ukrainian forces
liberate Odessa at the end of October. Now, the governments in Bucharest
and Sofia decide, that their time has come, they switch to the allied
side as well.

With the hasty withdrawal of the Germans from the Balkans, the
“Patriotic” partisans seize power in Greece, Yugoslavia, Albania until
mid January. After the breakthrough of the allied forces in to the Ruhr
valley and Northern Germany and in to Bavaria until end of March, the
rising of the Polish Home-army on April 1st and the overthrow of
Mussolini by the Italian King and army a few days later, the collapse is
near. After the British forces take Berlin on May 26, Hitler commits
suicide, and the Wehrmacht surrenders on June 3, 1945.

In Asia, the Island hopping got less far than OTL, but Japan still gets
in the reach of allied bombers, and is nuked on schedule. Less beaten,
it might take a few more bombs until surrender. As there are very little
Western troops around, the local forces take control in Indochina,
Indonesia, Korea and may be even Burma, the US only occupy Japan proper
and the Philippines. In China, the rivalry between Chiang and Mao
reaches soon new highs.

Post-War: Europe: France, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and may be a few
others, insist that the top priority must be to KEEP GERMANY WEAK. So
the country is occupied (French, US, UK, Polish and Czech areas of
occupation) and de-industrialized. Any help to Germany is OUT, (it isn’t
needed as a buffer against the Soviet threat, so it still IS the threat,
and HAS TO BEE HURT. The implementation of some kind of Morgenthau plan
finally annoys many even in the US and the UK, but basically triggers an
American withdrawal from Europe.

France and Poland annex parts of Germany (the Rhineland, Silesia,
Pommerania and East-Prussia) outright, and the rest is broken of in
small states under occupation. (Bavaria, Würtemberg, Baden, Hessen,
Thüringen, Saxony, Slesvig-Holstein, Brandenburg-Mecklenburg, and
Hanover (Lower-Saxony, Saxe-Anhalt, Hamburg and Westphalia.). The
disagreement among the powers leads to – no Marshal plan, smaller
powers, like Britain, France and Poland, get nukes until 1956.

Asia: India’s decolonization happens more ore less as in OTL, the
troubles in China continue (the US doesn’t take a clear side, and Mao
probably plays the “honest Chinese patriot” card. (As does Ho in
Vietnam). As there are no western forces present on the ground, no
attempts to regain control in Indochina or even Indonesia are made.


What about that?
Cheers
Good Habit
Rich Rostrom
2005-02-06 19:37:15 UTC
Permalink
The disaster doesn¹t increase Stalin¹s popularity, and his grip on
power. Several local commanders declare him deposed, but operate more
ore less independently of each other.
Impossible.

"When you strike a king, strike to kill."

No Soviet official or general would dare oppose Stalin
unless he could be sure that Stalin was _gone_.

Furthermore, as long as Stalin was in charge at the
center, he controlled all supply and support to the
armed forces. If some general mutinied, and his force
supported him, all fuel, food, and munitions would be
cut off instantly.
--
Nothing which was ever expressed originally in the English language resembles,
except in the most distant way, the thought of Plotinus, or Hegel, or Foucault.
I take this to be enormously to the credit of our language. -- David Stove
good.habit
2005-02-07 18:39:13 UTC
Permalink
Post by Rich Rostrom
The disaster doesn¹t increase Stalin¹s popularity, and his grip on
power. Several local commanders declare him deposed, but operate more
ore less independently of each other.
Impossible.
"When you strike a king, strike to kill."
No Soviet official or general would dare oppose Stalin
unless he could be sure that Stalin was _gone_.
Furthermore, as long as Stalin was in charge at the
center, he controlled all supply and support to the
armed forces. If some general mutinied, and his force
supported him, all fuel, food, and munitions would be
cut off instantly.
But of course there is no center any more... / at that point, most
lines of communications and transport would be broken, regional units
would have to operate independently (including supplies) or perish.
So, besides his obvious failure (Stalin) in the war, he can't do much,
and may be he even forbade local commanders to accept western help
(including troops) (And the West would probably all to ready to try
hold off the total collapse of all resistance in Russia, or a seperate
peace - so an quick alliance of rebelling commanders and western
powers doesn't seem so far fetched.
Rich Rostrom
2005-02-09 12:14:59 UTC
Permalink
Post by good.habit
Post by Rich Rostrom
The disaster doesn¹t increase Stalin¹s popularity, and his grip on
power. Several local commanders declare him deposed, but operate more
ore less independently of each other.
Impossible.
"When you strike a king, strike to kill."
No Soviet official or general would dare oppose Stalin
unless he could be sure that Stalin was _gone_.
Furthermore, as long as Stalin was in charge at the
center, he controlled all supply and support to the
armed forces. If some general mutinied, and his force
supported him, all fuel, food, and munitions would be
cut off instantly.
But of course there is no center any more... / at that point, most
lines of communications and transport would be broken, regional units
would have to operate independently (including supplies) or perish.
This is nonsense. Even if Moscow fell to the
Germans, the Stavka and the government would
relocate to another city further east. In OTL
some functions were temporarily relocated to
Kuibyshev in late 1941 when Moscow was in danger.

As for "regional units operating independently (including supplies)",
that only works for warlords facing other warlords. "Bandits with
tanks" is the phrase. And not many tanks: fuel is not available
'locally', nor bullets (Soviet lead production was highly
centralized, 90% from one plant).

A modern state (of any political flavor) cannot function
without a supreme authority. It needn't be an autocracy,
but someone has to have the power to make sure everybody
follows the same rules.
--
Nothing which was ever expressed originally in the English language resembles,
except in the most distant way, the thought of Plotinus, or Hegel, or Foucault.
I take this to be enormously to the credit of our language. -- David Stove
Good Habit
2005-02-09 16:51:34 UTC
Permalink
Post by Rich Rostrom
Post by good.habit
But of course there is no center any more... / at that point, most
lines of communications and transport would be broken, regional units
would have to operate independently (including supplies) or perish.
This is nonsense.
Sorry, but you continue to ignore what the question actually was - a
Soviet collapse first, and then the collapse of the Nazis.
Post by Rich Rostrom
Even if Moscow fell to the
Germans, the Stavka and the government would
relocate to another city further east. In OTL
some functions were temporarily relocated to
Kuibyshev in late 1941 when Moscow was in danger.
If the Germans just get a few miles east of Moscow, this is NO soviet
collapse. But if - as I proposed, they reach the Volga almost on all of
it's length from Jaroslav to Kuibyshev (and cross it on several points)
there isn't much of a centralized working soviet state left. (the Soviet
armys would more or less control the same areas as the 'White' armys
held early in 1919.) Behind the German lines, there would be a lot of
resistance, but the Soviet state wouldn't be capaple of any large
coordinated military effort on it's own any more. The Germans, however,
lack the manpower to occupy all of Russia, but basically, the war is
lost for the Soviets.

Contrary to other posters on this thread, I can't see a large scale
Brest-Litowsk, with a line of demarcartion at the Ural, as no Russian
government can agree to give so much away. The best chances of some
succesful continuation of the war effort would however have those
Russian armys that can get a lot of western support, probably not only
weapons and ammo, but also some boots on the ground. Chances are best in
the north (around Murmansk and Archangelsk) and the Southwest (Caucasus,
supplied via Iran).
Post by Rich Rostrom
As for "regional units operating independently (including supplies)",
that only works for warlords facing other warlords. "Bandits with
tanks" is the phrase. And not many tanks: fuel is not available
'locally', nor bullets (Soviet lead production was highly
centralized, 90% from one plant).
A modern state (of any political flavor) cannot function
without a supreme authority. It needn't be an autocracy,
but someone has to have the power to make sure everybody
follows the same rules.
But in this TL, a modern state wouldn't really exist in most of Russia
from the end of 42 to about the end of 44.
s***@yahoo.com
2005-02-09 17:18:17 UTC
Permalink
Post by Good Habit
But if - as I proposed, they reach the Volga almost on all of
it's length from Jaroslav to Kuibyshev (and cross it on several points)
there isn't much of a centralized working soviet state left.
Timing is an issue. But there is still quite a lot of manpower and
industry east of that line, even if the Germans reach it very quickly.
The rump USSR/Russia would still be a major power, if not a potential
superpower.
Post by Good Habit
Contrary to other posters on this thread, I can't see a large scale
Brest-Litowsk, with a line of demarcartion at the Ural, as no Russian
government can agree to give so much away.
It's stipulated that the government that does so, promptly disappears.

Oddly enough, two lines of criticism seem to be developing here:

"Russia might give up on the war, but would never give up Communism."

and

"Russia might give up Communism, but would never give up on the war."

I can see arguments for both, but neither seem obviously airtight to
me. And the TL assumes that Russia loses the war /and/ gives up
Communism, at least formally. (There are still all those
nomenklaturists.)

So, unless you're absolutely sure that this is really completely
impossible, ASB stuff, and have a strong argument for same that you're
willing to advance and defend... can we go with Super Brest-Litovsk and
Running Sore Russia? (1) Just to see where it may go?


Doug M.

(1) Off-white on the outside, Red on the inside, and not very pleasant
to contemplate withal.
Good Habit
2005-02-09 18:30:35 UTC
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Post by Good Habit
Post by Good Habit
But if - as I proposed, they reach the Volga almost on all of
it's length from Jaroslav to Kuibyshev (and cross it on several
points)
Post by Good Habit
there isn't much of a centralized working soviet state left.
Timing is an issue. But there is still quite a lot of manpower and
industry east of that line, even if the Germans reach it very quickly.
The rump USSR/Russia would still be a major power, if not a potential
superpower.
While it still would be large on a map, the connection between areas in
Siberia/Ural / Caucasus / and the North would be rather difficult, and
so really centralized operations seem to be out.
Post by Good Habit
Post by Good Habit
Contrary to other posters on this thread, I can't see a large scale
Brest-Litowsk, with a line of demarcartion at the Ural, as no Russian
government can agree to give so much away.
It's stipulated that the government that does so, promptly disappears.
And replaced by what?
Post by Good Habit
"Russia might give up on the war, but would never give up Communism."
This would, IMO, be true for the first generation Bolzheviks, including
Stalin. But not for the army and the bulk of the population.
Post by Good Habit
and
"Russia might give up Communism, but would never give up on the war."
If Stalin is out of the picture, this seems the most likely outcome.

(If you dont handwave in a somewhat nicer Hitler, I cant see a Ukrainian
puppet state (no need for it, Germany is "winning" the war), and not
even a some kind of Wlassov government in occupied Russia, and so to be
under German occupation is totaly innaceptable to the Russian people.
Post by Good Habit
So, unless you're absolutely sure that this is really completely
impossible, ASB stuff, and have a strong argument for same that you're
willing to advance and defend... can we go with Super Brest-Litovsk and
Running Sore Russia? (1) Just to see where it may go?
Actually, I wouldn't call it Super Brest-Litovsk, it's more a Russian Vichy.
[at Brest-Litovsk, Lenin gave up areas that wanted to be independent,
and had been part of Russia for less than 200 years (mostly)] / Here,
they give up the Heart of Russia (Moscow and the Volga valley).. urgh.

So more like Vichy.

But with several large differences: the French population had usually
much less to fear from the occupiers than the Russian, and an occupation
of all of Russia would be magnitudes more difficult (size) than of all
of France.

A more plausible analogy would, IMO, be China, where Chiang remained
(with western backing) in the war, although he lost much of his
heartland, but where _independent_ (communist) forces were operating
behind the Japanese lines. So I would see one (ore several) Russian
military government(s), trying to continue the war with western backing
(and the West would try everithing to keep them fighting, just to keep
the Germans busy!). And some independently operating partisan forces (or
several) behind the German lines, that would claim part of the spoils /
power at the end of the war.

(Among those might be independent Ukrainian resistance fighters, hoping
to pre-empt a russian reconquest of their homeland).

Cheers
Good Habit
Good Habit
2005-02-09 20:21:15 UTC
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Post by Good Habit
Post by s***@yahoo.com
"Russia might give up on the war, but would never give up Communism."
So let's assume, that the person that would most likely follow the upper
line (Stalin) remains in power until the situation is very bad, and at
the end of January, 1943, the peace of Kazan is signed: The USSR gives
up all territory west of the Ural river (not mountains) and west of
longitude 55., that means the Northern and southern Front.

What would follow?
Some Russian troops will try to continue the war in these areas. What
will the West do? Wait till the Wehrmacht shoes up at the Baku
oil-fields? I doubt it very much. So the western powers will try to
support a "Free Russia" movement, especially in the South and the north,
and try to support it via Murmansk/Archangelsk and via Iran.
Stalin will search someone to blame for the disaster, and start a
purging campaign of the remaining army. That will not increase loyality,
and several army commanders will try to save their skins by rebelling
against *the looser* and *traitor* (made deals with Hitler twice, and
left most of the nation under German boots). So more rebellious
goverments might spring up across Siberia / Central Asia, and some
Russian Civil war might result.
Post by Good Habit
Post by s***@yahoo.com
"Russia might give up Communism, but would never give up on the war."
If Stalin is out of the picture, this seems the most likely outcome.
Some day, Stalin would be out of the picture, and than the re-entry of
"Free Russia" in to the war is just a question of time.

OTOH, if Stalin remains in control, and the Russian resistance doesn't
get western help, Hitler might free a lot of troops (starting summer of
43) and that, together with the freed resources, might the fortress
Europe work for quite some time (a failure of the sicilian campaign, or
at least the follow up in southern Italy seems likely, and with a war in
the Pacific going on (and probably some German troops "marching trough
Georgia" in to Iran and later Iraq), the allied supremacy might not be
so convincing. So - no Italian campaign, no D'Day, nukes are untested,
and the Japanese are the top concern of the American governement. That
makes a "Fatherland" scenario not that unlikely...
c***@aol.com
2005-02-08 19:17:57 UTC
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Stalin's innate Stalinness, incidentally, is why I prefer making
Stalin's death in late June of '41 the precise POD for this scenario.
It makes the Soviet collapse so much easier historically, and so much
more vivid to imagine.
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