Wild (you are splendidly named, btw) it's not that I am pro Soviet. It's that nazi alternate history is just boring and overdone. I really don't think anything genuinely new or interesting on the subject has been thought up in decades. Nothing in this thread qualifies as either new or interesting, btw, it's the usual blend of implausible stuff and technological fetishism.
So how about that Soviet win at Warsaw? Does the revolution spread to Berlin and elsewhere? What do the Western Allies do?
Very interesting question, missed this first time round. It raises all sorts of issues with regard to the requisites for organic proletarian revolution, whether it can be spread from outside, and not least, whether the world was even ripe for socialism in 1920, anywhere.
In passing, Flavius, I would suggest that you extend your investigation of the effects the interests manifested in the cold war have had on western understanding of the Russian military, to the effect they have also had on our understanding of political issues and characters.
Nevertheless, as regards spreading the revolution to Poland, the Bolsheviks soon noted in their counterattack on Poland, how unresponsive the locals were to revolutionary appeals. Voting against a continuation of the attack towards Warsaw at the central committee, Trotsky, then or subsequently, quoted Robespierre on the foolhardiness of exporting liberty at bayonette point. Lenin and the majority disagreed, to everyone's cost.
Even in military victory, which Tukhachevsky was more than able to deliver, 'sovietisation' of Poland would not only have alienated many of the revolution's potential allies in Poland, but quite possibly, also the German workers, the mass of whom they so desperately sought to lead. Though subjugation of a small power might sometimes be necessary in an unfavourable strategic situation, as in the Caucasus, it has powerful side effects for revolutionary causes, and is a desperate measure.
That is not to say that the proximity of the Red Army to Germany in 1920 wouldn't have boosted the KPD. It might or might not. But what of leadership, the other vital ingredient of revolution? By 1920 all of Luxemburg, Liebknecht and Mehring ( :) ) were dead. Three years later, the KPD botched the most favourable revolutionary situation for lack of artistry and helped pave the way for both Stalin and Hitler.
If revolution had succeeded in Germany, I think brings me to the point where the possibilities are too many, with too many variables to speculate. But of all the possible outcomes, the further spread of revolution to France and britain, to the US even, where Eugene Debbs had gained a million socialist votes from his prison cell, I am left wondering what the working class taking political power, even internationally, could actually have achieved.
Scientific socialism as opposed to utopian, bases itself upon the development of labour productivity to a level at which there is no longer any need to fight over satisfying basic needs. Marx described this as the absolute prerequisite for socialism.
The Bolsheviks realised that they could not create socialism in backward Russia, that 'generalised want,' as Marx put it, would lead inevitably to counterrevolution. They put their money on spreading revolution to an advanced economy that could haul Russia out of its backwardness before the working class's power was toppled. They lost the bet, and sixty odd years sooner than is generally recognised.
But had the revolution spread to Germany as they particularly hoped, would it have made any difference? Looking at German economy and living standards of the time, and even that of Britain and the US, I really think the entire project was premature. While the advances of the 19th century were indeed impressive and emerging mass production techniques promised a further leap in possible living standards, even rich people of the time were subject to levels of want and discomfort that the contemporary technology and labour productivity could not ameliorate for them, let alone for the entire population. The social force for socialist revolution, the working class, had come into being, but the economic and technological prerequisites for that class's rule, and the end of class rule, had not.
A little dense, but worth the effort-
"The worst thing that can befall a leader of an extreme party is to be compelled to take over a government in an epoch when the movement is not yet ripe for the domination of the class which he represents and for the realisation of the measures which that domination would imply. What he can do depends not upon his will but upon the sharpness of the clash of interests between the various classes, and upon the degree of development of the material means of existence, the relations of production and means of communication upon which the clash of interests of the classes is based every time. What he ought to do, what his party demands of him, again depends not upon him, or upon the degree of development of the class struggle and its conditions. He is bound to his doctrines and the demands hitherto propounded which do not emanate from the interrelations of the social classes at a given moment, or from the more or less accidental level of relations of production and means of communication, but from his more or less penetrating insight into the general result of the social and political movement. Thus he necessarily finds himself in a dilemma. What he can do is in contrast to all his actions as hitherto practised, to all his principles and to the present interests of his party; what he ought to do cannot be achieved. In a word, he is compelled to represent not his party or his class, but the class for whom conditions are ripe for domination. In the interests of the movement itself, he is compelled to defend the interests of an alien class, and to feed his own class with phrases and promises, with the assertion that the interests of that alien class are their own interests. Whoever puts himself in this awkward position is irrevocably lost. "
Engels, 1850 http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1850/peasant-war-germany/ch06.htm#6.1
I don't believe that means of production capable of eliminating generalised want for the worlds's population came into existance before the IT revolution. On top of all the labour saving and many other technologies developed after the war, modern communications have made a 40+ hour working week unnecessary in an economy not regulated by a market. Poverty is increasingly the product of our economic organisation rather than a necessary historical division of wealth. The de-skilling and unemployment of swathes of people is not an absolute social necessity but relative to our society in it's trajectory of decay.
“The end of democracy and the defeat of the American Revolution will occur when government falls into the hands of lending institutions and moneyed incorporations.”
¯ Thomas Jefferson