From: Connecticut, USA
One scenario that's been kicking around in my head is how to simulate a 1922 scenario whereby the Anglo-Japanese Self Defense Pact is still in force and implemented, without the combined Japanese and Royal Navies slaughtering everything that gets in their way.
How about this? - World War I ends in early 1918, with Germany agreeing to withdraw from France, in exchange for some territorial concession to the east at the expense of Russia, which is in the throws of the Bolshevik Revolution. Another condition for peace is the USA, whose European Expeditionary Force wasn’t able to get into full scale combat in the trenches before the war ended, guarantees the security of the German Pacific and Chinese colonies (including the Caroline and Marshall Islands, and Tsingtao in China). The Kaiser, though weakened, is still in power, League of Nations never forms, and the High Seas Fleet is intact.
The Washington Naval Conference breaks down in 1922 when it is discovered that the USA is eavesdropping on Japanese communiqués (as they really did in real life). The Anglo-Japanese Defense Pact remains in force. Diplomatically isolated, the USA signs a mutual defense pact with China. Sensing opportunity, the Japanese successfully fabricate incidents in China to appear she was attacked by the Republic of China and Germany. The USA, and the UK and Commonwealth, are reluctantly drawn into opposing sides to honor their treaty obligations, but not before agreeing to avoid another bloodbath in Europe by limiting the scope of the war to a clearly defined area in the Pacific Rim (which by amazing coincidence happens to be the WPO map, thereby allowing the Royal Navy and High Seas Fleet to arrive in the theater intact). The Great War in the Pacific is underway.
One note about the High Seas Fleet, however. I'd imagine the endurance of their BB and BCs would be quite low, unless somehow it was understood that they were modified. With the exception of their overseas cruisers, most of the German ships had limited crew quarters, it being expected that their crews would mostly sleep on barracks on shore. This is one reason that the UK didn't buy the German explanation before World War I that the High Seas Fleet was built to protect overseas German colonies, as opposed to taking on the Royal Navy, which was about one day's sail away.
< Message edited by Connfire -- 9/7/2009 9:16:11 PM >