Matrix Games Forums

New Screenshots for Pike & ShotDeal of the Week Command: Modern Air/Naval Operations WOTYCommand: Modern Air/Naval Operations WOTY is now available!Frontline : The Longest Day Announced and in Beta!Command gets Wargame of the Year EditionDeal of the Week: Pandora SeriesPandora: Eclipse of Nashira is now availableDistant Worlds Gets another updateHell is Approaching Deal of the Week Battle Academy
Forums  Register  Login  Photo Gallery  Member List  Search  Calendars  FAQ 

My Profile  Inbox  Address Book  My Subscription  My Forums  Log Out

RE: Hypothetical history...

 
View related threads: (in this forum | in all forums)

Logged in as: Guest
Users viewing this topic: none
  Printable Version
All Forums >> [General] >> General Discussion >> RE: Hypothetical history... Page: <<   < prev  1 [2]
Login
Message << Older Topic   Newer Topic >>
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 8:01:13 PM   
warspite1


Posts: 18876
Joined: 2/2/2008
From: England
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: warspite1


quote:

ORIGINAL: nicwb

Wouldn't the deciding feature be the German execution of the Schlieffen Plan ? As I recall they were very committed to it as a knock out blow against France. It essentially meant a movement through Belguim. I suspect the UK was very committed to Belgian neutrality and a balance of power in Europe, in which case the UK would have been in the fight very much as they were later.
Warspite1

Not if what I was told some years ago is true (although I must admit I never did check the validity of the statement). Essentially I was told that there was no legally binding basis for Britain to come to the aid of Belgium in 1914 (indeed the British were not certain of coming into WWI until quite late in the day).

If this is true then Schlieffen plan or not - the British may stay out.
Warspite1

Okay, so it was the Treaty of London 1839. This was signed by all the great powers and the signatories confirmed that they would respect Belgian neutrality. The British acted when the Germans failed to uphold their end of the bargain. The person who told me there was no obligation is a very successful a lawyer and I suspect he knows what he is talking about.

Being cynical, the Treaty was probably a convenient excuse if things went wrong for the British; i.e. the Government could say they had an obligation to declare war?? Anyone know anymore on this?


_____________________________

England expects that every man will do his duty - Horatio Nelson 1805.




(in reply to warspite1)
Post #: 31
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 8:04:54 PM   
warspite1


Posts: 18876
Joined: 2/2/2008
From: England
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

Even if the British did decide to intervene, would they be able to do so in a significant way if the Germans managed to achieve a reasonable level of strategic surprised before executing the Schlieffen Plan? Does anyone have a good sense of the balance of readily available continental land power between Germany, France and Britain in 1905?

Regards,

- Erik
Warspite1

I don't but as I said earlier, I think that if you look at 1870 and 1914, then it would be unlikely that in the 44 years between times the Germans lost their advantage. Without the British, I think it is game over for the French - but even with the British, if the Russians are neutral then I still think the outlook looks pretty bleak on the Western Front......

_____________________________

England expects that every man will do his duty - Horatio Nelson 1805.




(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 32
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 8:29:12 PM   
nate25


Posts: 1379
Joined: 9/20/2011
From: Fishers Indiana
Status: offline
Trying to dig up OOBs for these nations in 1905 is challenging. I do know the Russians had 115 inf. div. and 38 cav. div. in 1914, but how that translates to 1905 I'm not sure,
as a lot of Russian forces (ca. 2,000,000 men) were organized as brigades/regiments/squadrons.

I'll find it if it's out there.

_____________________________

I have a subtle and cunning plan.

(in reply to warspite1)
Post #: 33
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 8:38:56 PM   
Capt. Harlock


Posts: 4258
Joined: 9/15/2001
From: Los Angeles
Status: offline
quote:

How would Germany counter a blockade by the RN, esp. in 1905? Don't you see that as a British response to a prolonged German stay in France? Let alone Germany trying to seize
colonial possessions she can't support from the sea.


Seize nothing -- by 1905, Germany already had major colonies in Africa, territory in China as a result of the Boxer rebellion, and a number of islands in the Pacific. (Japan declared war on Germany largely to scoop up those islands, and they figured prominently in WWII.) A British blockade would have been tantamount to war.

_____________________________

Civil war? What does that mean? Is there any foreign war? Isn't every war fought between men, between brothers?

--Victor Hugo

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 34
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 8:45:24 PM   
nate25


Posts: 1379
Joined: 9/20/2011
From: Fishers Indiana
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Capt. Harlock

quote:

How would Germany counter a blockade by the RN, esp. in 1905? Don't you see that as a British response to a prolonged German stay in France? Let alone Germany trying to seize
colonial possessions she can't support from the sea.


Seize nothing -- by 1905, Germany already had major colonies in Africa, territory in China as a result of the Boxer rebellion, and a number of islands in the Pacific. (Japan declared war on Germany largely to scoop up those islands, and they figured prominently in WWII.) A British blockade would have been tantamount to war.


Yes, I'm aware Germany had overseas possessions in 1905.

My train of thought was a much weaker German Navy trying to support said colonies along with anything seized in light of the (hypothetical) French defeat in 1905.


_____________________________

I have a subtle and cunning plan.

(in reply to Capt. Harlock)
Post #: 35
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 9:10:31 PM   
Orm


Posts: 6197
Joined: 5/3/2008
From: Sweden
Status: offline
I think it would go something like this.

1) During the Morocco Crisis Germany declares war on France.
2) Germany mobilize the army.
3) Britain warns Germany that Belgian neutrality must be respected.
4) France mobilize.
5) Germany advance into France respecting Belgian neutrality.
6) Russia mobilize and issue an ultimatum to Germany.
7) Russian ultimatum is ignored so Russian forces slowly advance into Prussia but German forces halt their advance. Russia do not push their attack.
8) Germany wins the battle of the German-French border.
9) US tries to initiate peace talks.
10) Battle of Paris begins.
11) Germany is on the verge of winning the bloody battle of Paris.
12) Britain issue ultimatum to Germany to end the war or Britain will go to war to ensure that France survive.
13) Britain put presure on Germany threatening their colonies. Britain encourage France to seek peace (surrender conditionally)
14) Peace talks begins. Edit: After 6 months of bloody fighting.
15) France surrender some territory and colonies to Germany. France pays for Germany for the cost of the war.
--- 8 years pass by ---
16) Archduke Franz Ferdinand is assassinated 1914.
17) After a month of turmoil Europe mobilize and The Great War (WWI) begin.
18) 1920 - Germany is defeated. France still angry about the 1905 war want Germany to pay up to get peace and gets mostly what they want.


< Message edited by Orm -- 4/10/2012 9:57:21 PM >


_____________________________

Ladies and Gentlemen, this is your Captain speaking. We have a small problem. All four engines have stopped. We are doing our damnedest to get them going again. I trust you are not in too much distress. - Captain Eric Moody

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 36
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 9:38:28 PM   
nate25


Posts: 1379
Joined: 9/20/2011
From: Fishers Indiana
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Orm

I think it would go something like this.

1) During the Morocco Crisis Germany declares war on France.
2) Germany mobilize the army.
3) Britain warns Germany that Belgian neutrality must be respected.
4) France mobilize.
5) Germany advance into France respecting Belgian neutrality.
6) Russia mobilize and issue an ultimatum to Germany.
7) Russian ultimatum is ignored so Russian forces slowly advance into Prussia but German forces halt their advance. Russia do not push their attack.
8) Germany wins the battle of the German-French border.
9) US tries to initiate peace talks.
10) Battle of Paris begins.
11) Germany is on the verge of winning the bloody battle of Paris.
12) Britain issue ultimatum to Germany to end the war or Britain will go to war to ensure that France survive.
13) Britain put presure on Germany threatening their colonies. Britain encourage France to seek peace (surrender conditionally)
14) Peace talks begins
15) France surrender some territory and colonies to Germany. France pays for Germany for the cost of the war.
16) Archduke Franz Ferdinand is assassinated 1914.
17) After a month of turmoil Europe mobilize and The Great War (WWI) begin.
18) 1920 - Germany is defeated. France still angry about the 1905 war want Germany to pay up to get peace and gets mostly what they want.



I like Orm's theory, except I think things would have progreesed into WW1 much earlier than 1914, perhaps even be finished up by then.


_____________________________

I have a subtle and cunning plan.

(in reply to Orm)
Post #: 37
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 9:49:08 PM   
nate25


Posts: 1379
Joined: 9/20/2011
From: Fishers Indiana
Status: offline
In fact the more I think about it, one side or the other probably would have been played out much sooner than 1914.

9-10 yrs.! Thats a looong time for a lot of countries to be on a war footing. Look at some of the European nations in '45.

_____________________________

I have a subtle and cunning plan.

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 38
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 9:53:40 PM   
Orm


Posts: 6197
Joined: 5/3/2008
From: Sweden
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: nate25

In fact the more I think about it, one side or the other probably would have been played out much sooner than 1914.

9-10 yrs.! Thats a looong time for a lot of countries to be on a war footing. Look at some of the European nations in '45.

I ment that the war would have been 6 months or so in 1905-1906. And that a new war (WWI) would have been fought between 1914 and 1920 (I picked 1920 since Germany would have a stronger position and I guess it would have ended two years later with a German defeat).

_____________________________

Ladies and Gentlemen, this is your Captain speaking. We have a small problem. All four engines have stopped. We are doing our damnedest to get them going again. I trust you are not in too much distress. - Captain Eric Moody

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 39
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 9:56:48 PM   
nate25


Posts: 1379
Joined: 9/20/2011
From: Fishers Indiana
Status: offline
Ah. Understood.

So you see everyone just sitting for several years after the French defeat? Why?

_____________________________

I have a subtle and cunning plan.

(in reply to Orm)
Post #: 40
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 10:07:29 PM   
Orm


Posts: 6197
Joined: 5/3/2008
From: Sweden
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: nate25

Ah. Understood.

So you see everyone just sitting for several years after the French defeat? Why?

I suspect this will take some years.

-Britain do not want to get embroiled into a land war in Europe.
-Germany feeling the need to build a navy to strong enough to defend their colonies and strong enough to be a threat to Britain. Angry as they are that Britain dictates peace terms.
-France reform their army and seeks allies to fight Germany
-Russia has internal turmoil after two bad wars in 1905. Army is used to thwart attempted revolutions.
-Austria-Hungaria weary because a balkan war.
-US do not want to be involved in European wars.

----
Britain change focus when the German navy becomes a threat.
France with a reformed army seeks and gains an alliance with Britain.

_____________________________

Ladies and Gentlemen, this is your Captain speaking. We have a small problem. All four engines have stopped. We are doing our damnedest to get them going again. I trust you are not in too much distress. - Captain Eric Moody

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 41
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/10/2012 10:13:13 PM   
nate25


Posts: 1379
Joined: 9/20/2011
From: Fishers Indiana
Status: offline
Interesting.

I don't see everyone letting the French go down to defeat, Thus a war much sooner.

But your theory is as plausible as mine.

_____________________________

I have a subtle and cunning plan.

(in reply to Orm)
Post #: 42
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/11/2012 12:50:12 AM   
sulla05

 

Posts: 1097
Joined: 1/11/2005
Status: offline
Britain whether because of treaties or not would become involved because of the chance of Germany taking over the channel ports.

Britain had fought since the 1600s to keep those ports out of a strong nations hands. The reason they fought Spain, Louis XIV,Louis XV and Napoleon etc. was to keep the ports out of their hands.

Britain felt it could never afford to have a really strong nation only X number of miles away from their island.

Now whether the British army would have done much in 1905 is open to question.

As to Russia, by March 1905 they were already moving any troops they could from Europe to Asia to fight the Japanese. As bad off as they were in arms etc. to find to fight the Japanese it would have been a long time before an army of any sort was available to attack Germany. The Russians actually developed a much stronger army because of the issues they found with deployment material etc. during the war with Japan.

Actually this scenario is probably the best time for Germany to attack France and to have a good chance of success.

_____________________________

Windows 7 home premium 64
Intel quad core I7
6 Gb DD3
ATI 5800

Di! Ecce hora! Uxor mea me necabit!

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 43
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/11/2012 9:42:03 AM   
nicwb

 

Posts: 275
Joined: 4/26/2010
Status: offline
I think that's probably right.

By '05 the UK and Germany were already in a serious arms race regarding naval size. The UK never maintained a large standing army but always since the Napoleonic Wars kept a substantial fleet both for defence and protection of colonial interests and sea going commerce.
Any challenge to their naval supremacy would have been viewed as a threat to security and their world power status. This important as the UK was more susceptible to public mood than Germany. Dreadnougts were very much a matter of patriotic pride.

Added to this, Germany was really the closest power to the UK in terms of inducstrial capacity and Germany was pressing its claims for Colonial interests.

Finally, the UK, I think tended to see European policy in terms of maintaining a balance where it could stand outside and bring its weight to bear on whatever side of the scales it saw fit. If the balance got out of whack then the UK lost influence.

Militarily, though I don't think the UK saw European intervention as being putting huge armies in the field but rather running complete naval blaockades based on sea power and economic dominance strangulation.



(in reply to sulla05)
Post #: 44
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/11/2012 7:16:14 PM   
warspite1


Posts: 18876
Joined: 2/2/2008
From: England
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: nicwb

I think that's probably right.

By '05 the UK and Germany were already in a serious arms race regarding naval size. The UK never maintained a large standing army but always since the Napoleonic Wars kept a substantial fleet both for defence and protection of colonial interests and sea going commerce.
Any challenge to their naval supremacy would have been viewed as a threat to security and their world power status. This important as the UK was more susceptible to public mood than Germany. Dreadnougts were very much a matter of patriotic pride.

Added to this, Germany was really the closest power to the UK in terms of inducstrial capacity and Germany was pressing its claims for Colonial interests.

Finally, the UK, I think tended to see European policy in terms of maintaining a balance where it could stand outside and bring its weight to bear on whatever side of the scales it saw fit. If the balance got out of whack then the UK lost influence.

Militarily, though I don't think the UK saw European intervention as being putting huge armies in the field but rather running complete naval blaockades based on sea power and economic dominance strangulation.



Warspite1

quote:

By '05 the UK and Germany were already in a serious arms race regarding naval size


Yes, this race was properly underway in 1905 although had someway to go. In 1900 German warship tonnage was about a quarter of the RN. Ten years later it was just under 50%.

quote:

Added to this, Germany was really the closest power to the UK in terms of inducstrial capacity


By 1905 Britain had already started her relative decline. Germany was actually ahead in many key measures e.g. sometime between 1900 and WWI Germany overtook Britain in total manufacturing output. In 1900 Germany out produced Britain in Iron and Steel and by 1910 they were producing double Britain's output. Germany was also ahead in modern technologies.

quote:

Finally, the UK, I think tended to see European policy in terms of maintaining a balance where it could stand outside and bring its weight to bear on whatever side of the scales it saw fit. If the balance got out of whack then the UK lost influence.


Yes - hedgemony. Philip II, Napoleon, Hitler etc. Britain was content to stay out of European wars - unless someone threatened them directly or threatened to take control on the continent - in which case they got a tad miffed and paid for the Germans or Austrians or Russians (delete as applicable) to fight the aggressor.

quote:

Militarily, though I don't think the UK saw European intervention as being putting huge armies in the field but rather running complete naval blaockades based on sea power and economic dominance strangulation.


See above. As a legacy of the English Civil War - and by virtue of having a great big moat surrounding this sceptred isle - Britain has never had a large land army (WWI accepted). As discussed previously though, if Germany owns most of Europe, what good is an economic blockade?

< Message edited by warspite1 -- 4/11/2012 7:53:54 PM >


_____________________________

England expects that every man will do his duty - Horatio Nelson 1805.




(in reply to nicwb)
Post #: 45
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/11/2012 8:14:01 PM   
Capt. Harlock


Posts: 4258
Joined: 9/15/2001
From: Los Angeles
Status: offline
quote:

As discussed previously though, if Germany owns most of Europe, what good is an economic blockade?


Pretty much the same as the blockade in WWII, although since the world's armed forces were not as dependent on petroleum, a little less. But, as I mention above, cutting off Germany from her colonies would be a major embarrassment for the German government.

_____________________________

Civil war? What does that mean? Is there any foreign war? Isn't every war fought between men, between brothers?

--Victor Hugo

(in reply to warspite1)
Post #: 46
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/11/2012 8:17:36 PM   
warspite1


Posts: 18876
Joined: 2/2/2008
From: England
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Capt. Harlock

quote:

As discussed previously though, if Germany owns most of Europe, what good is an economic blockade?


Pretty much the same as the blockade in WWII, although since the world's armed forces were not as dependent on petroleum, a little less. But, as I mention above, cutting off Germany from her colonies would be a major embarrassment for the German government.
Warspite1

Yes, but that did not stop the Kaiser from going to war in 1914 so it probably would not be an insurmountable issue in 1905. Beating France into submission rather than being humiliated over Morocco probably takes preference over keeping the trade routes to Namibia open

_____________________________

England expects that every man will do his duty - Horatio Nelson 1805.




(in reply to Capt. Harlock)
Post #: 47
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/11/2012 9:35:30 PM   
shunwick


Posts: 1720
Joined: 10/15/2006
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: sulla05

Britain whether because of treaties or not would become involved because of the chance of Germany taking over the channel ports.



Specifically Antwerp. It was practically an obsession. During the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 Britain was prepared to send 20,000 troops to the port to protect it from the French... That was why Britain was so keen to protect Belgian neutrality. They did not want any power other than a neutral in possesion of Antwerp.

Best wishes,
Steve


_____________________________

I love the smell of TOAW in the morning...

(in reply to sulla05)
Post #: 48
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/12/2012 12:28:07 AM   
Alfred

 

Posts: 3710
Joined: 9/28/2006
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

Consider this one. In March of 1905, during the Morocco Crisis, Germany declares a surprise war on France (and only France). What would have happened and how would it have changed the history of the 20th Century?

Regards,

- Erik


Probably would have resulted in a decisive German victory over France.

Must wishful thinking posted in this thread but the hard facts do not support such posts.

1. A surprise German declaration of war on France in March 1905 would most likely not have seen other powers coming into the conflict.

(a) Russia - still involved in the war with Japan which was not ended until September. By March the revolution was in full swing with massive numbers of workers on strike. Dissatisfaction in the navy which witnessed mutinies and a general level of dissatisfaction in the army. The Russian financial position had also deteriorated markedly and was largely kept afloat by new loans from both France and Germany. The raising of those loans would have been problematical if Germany and France were at war as they would have had first call on mobilising their own national savings to finance their own war.

(b) United Kingdom - never developed a close diplomatic relationship with France before WWI. 1905 was merely the start of a thawing out in relations with France which as recently as 1898 had looked as if the two countries might have gone to war over the Fashoda incident. Definitely no military cooperation existed in 1905 (see point 2 below). A German move into Belgium would have given the UK a pretext for involvement in a war but not a binding commitment that it had to intervene.

(c) Austria-Hungary would have remained neutral. It's neutrality would have allowed trans-shipment of goods to Germany through its territories. Without the need to supply its own forces in combat, Austrian industry would have been available to bolster the German war effort.

(d) Italy - allied with Germany might have joined the war against France in a repeat of 1866 but this time substituting France for Austria-Hungary. Not a very strong possibility but one nonetheless as Italy (i) would have wanted to recover her influence in Tunisia which had been steadily weakened since the 1880s, (ii) had not yet acquired her north African colonial interests in Libya, (iii) with a neutral Austria-Hungary there would be no opportunity nor profit to change sides and fight alongside France as happened in 1915.

(e) Spain - would not have come to France's assistance. Still traumatised by 1898 and with the military more pro German than French.

(f) Turkey - already pro-German but not as commited to Germany as it later became the Young Turks gained power. Would not have sided with France.

2. Even if the UK did side with France, the British military contribution in 1905 would have been of no effective assistance to France. Only if the war dragged on into 1906 would the military assistance have become effective.

(a) There was no BEF to send over to France. In 1914 the BEF was a well trained force which to a large extent was responsible for creating the gap between the German 1st and 2nd armies which allowed the miracle of the Marne to save France. In 1905, the British army reforms which led to the BEF of 1914 were not yet. Staff talks between the French and the British had not yet been held hence what ever might have been sent over to France would have been hastily cobbled together with no clear role assigned.

(b) In 1905 the Admiralty still clinged to the concept of a close blockade of enemy ports. Had it been implemented German torpedo boats using torpedoes would have been able to dash in and out of port to sink the British blockaders. It was the realisation of the effectiveness of torpedoes which led the Admiralty, just before WWI to abandon a close blockade in favour of a long distance standoff blockade which required the High Seas Fleet to venture deep into the North Sea to break the blockade.

(c) 1905 saw HMS Dreadnought. Overnight the huge British naval lead over Germany disappeared as the pre-dreadnoughts were effectively left out of the equation. Whilst in immediate terms the pre-dreadnoughts could still be employed effectively in 1905 due to lack of the new dreadnoughts, nonetheless both the British public and politicians became uncertain about their strategic position.



A Germany not burdened with having to prop up allies, as occurred in 1914-18, in a straight out confrontation with France, would have been favoured to win relatively quickly. France was not yet overtaking the Germany military base, a development which led some years later to internal German angst that they were losing the strategic military advantage to France. By 1905 the German navy was already strong enough to seriously challenge the French navy which at the time was still required to maintain both a Mediterranean and Atlantic/Channel fleet.

Alfred

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 49
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/12/2012 12:44:07 AM   
warspite1


Posts: 18876
Joined: 2/2/2008
From: England
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Alfred


quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

Consider this one. In March of 1905, during the Morocco Crisis, Germany declares a surprise war on France (and only France). What would have happened and how would it have changed the history of the 20th Century?

Regards,

- Erik


Must wishful thinking posted in this thread but the hard facts do not support such posts.
Alfred
Warspite1

So you agree with Sulla05 post 21 and my post 25 - a German victory

_____________________________

England expects that every man will do his duty - Horatio Nelson 1805.




(in reply to Alfred)
Post #: 50
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/12/2012 1:11:50 AM   
Erik Rutins

 

Posts: 32921
Joined: 3/28/2000
From: Vermont, USA
Status: offline
Great post Alfred, thanks!

Now how do you see that outcome changing the events of the following 40 years?

Regards,

- Erik

_____________________________

Erik Rutins
Director of Product Development


For official support, please use our Help Desk: http://www.matrixgames.com/helpdesk/

Freedom is not Free.

(in reply to warspite1)
Post #: 51
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/12/2012 1:55:52 AM   
sulla05

 

Posts: 1097
Joined: 1/11/2005
Status: offline

Well for one Germany does not have the " stabbed in the back " syndrome during the depression.

However France was leaning fascist at various times in the build up to WWII.

Possibly France has a strongman dictatorship because they lost in 1905.

France would have been so weakened by their losses in 1905 that they are a non-issue for a military attack for 20 years.

I do not see another war of European scale taking place in 1914 or so because Russia would be left to go it pretty much alone against Germany and Austro-Hungary. Especially with them being allied on paper to Italy.

However a new war once France is stronger is certainly possible in the 1930s which would probably look very much like WWI did in reality. Seeing as how with no revolutions or threat of them the European powers are still controlled by the monarchies that are in place in 1905.

_____________________________

Windows 7 home premium 64
Intel quad core I7
6 Gb DD3
ATI 5800

Di! Ecce hora! Uxor mea me necabit!

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 52
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/12/2012 2:08:37 AM   
Alfred

 

Posts: 3710
Joined: 9/28/2006
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: warspite1


quote:

ORIGINAL: Alfred


quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

Consider this one. In March of 1905, during the Morocco Crisis, Germany declares a surprise war on France (and only France). What would have happened and how would it have changed the history of the 20th Century?

Regards,

- Erik


Must wishful thinking posted in this thread but the hard facts do not support such posts.
Alfred
Warspite1

So you agree with Sulla05 post 21 and my post 25 - a German victory


Your post #25, yes. Re post #21, yes to most of it.

War is a messy outcome. There are several assumptions which are not 100% guaranteed to pan out in reality. But on the balance of probablities, yes I think only Germany could bring the war to a successful conclusion in 1905. Assuming competent leadership of course in prosecuting the war.

The blockade issue is a good example of assumptions at work. There is no doubt, if the UK had gone to war with Germany in 1905, a close blockade would have been established. As you would be aware, war can serve to concentrate the mind so the question would then be would the Admiralty have moved more quickly in a wartime situation to change its doctrine than it did during peacetime. I suspect it would have but would it have suffered critical losses in the interim? Would the Germans have grasped fully the opportunities afforded by torpedo boats to inflict those critical losses in the interim?

In any case a blockade would not have produced the results seen in 1914-18 if most of Europe had remained neutral. Thus the slow strangulation experienced by Germany in WWI would not have resulted. France (and its UK ally if actually drawn into the conflict) would have to find another way to win the war. Remember that Kitchener's New Army basically took 18 months to become operational. Thus France would have to survive 1905 largely on its own resources until a British land army became operational in the winter of 1906.

Alfred

(in reply to warspite1)
Post #: 53
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/12/2012 2:12:11 PM   
nicwb

 

Posts: 275
Joined: 4/26/2010
Status: offline
quote:

In any case a blockade would not have produced the results seen in 1914-18 if most of Europe had remained neutral. Thus the slow strangulation experienced by Germany in WWI would not have resulted. France (and its UK ally if actually drawn into the conflict) would have to find another way to win the war. Remember that Kitchener's New Army basically took 18 months to become operational. Thus France would have to survive 1905 largely on its own resources until a British land army became operational in the winter of 1906


I'm not too sure about some of those assumptions - even during WW1 the Netherlands remained neutral. The Germans initially tried to utilise that plus a common border to avoid the blockade. The UK managed to subvert this by use of economic muscle and extension of the blockade to anyone carrying war related materials -there's an excellent account of this in Vol 1 of Huw Strachan's History First World War.

The Russians even if they couldn't field an army were already bound to support France and would have supported a blockade, France and the Uk essentially controlled both the entrances to the North Atlantic and Mediterranean (they both owned the Suez canal and could dictate access). In any event certain raw materials were peculiarly in the hands of the UK and France - most noticeably rubber.

Yes, France would need to survive on its own in the field for a while but 18mnths is a pessimistic estimate. The UK did have a standing army plus access to the Indian Army. They would both have been available well before 18mnths.

The other question mark is the Russian army. 1905 was probably the best chance for the Germans as the Russian army was partly occupied in the far East and still awaiting the impetus for modernization but it was huge and its mere existence was the reason for the Schlieffen plan in the first place. The German military didn't belive they could successfully take on both Russia and France at the same time. Even the absence of being shackled to the "Austrian dead man" would mean that the Russians would also be only facing the Germans.

As you say warv is a messy outcome and no plan survives first contact with the enemy.

(in reply to Alfred)
Post #: 54
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/12/2012 6:58:05 PM   
warspite1


Posts: 18876
Joined: 2/2/2008
From: England
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

Great post Alfred, thanks!

Now how do you see that outcome changing the events of the following 40 years?

Regards,

- Erik
Warspite1

I think in order to even begin thinking about that question we need to agree upon something else.

Consensus (pretty much) is that Germany wins a fight against the French in 1905 (with or without Britain - and Russia is unlikely to intervene (or intervene ineffectually) because of Japan issues). But what do the Germans do with that victory? What is the end game for the Kaiser?

Do they seek to keep France intact - but install a German puppet government? Do they pillage the place for all its worth, maybe take some territory and force the French to pay reparations then leave alone. Or do they occupy and incorporate into some Greater Germany? Do they then set about Russia or prepare for a war against Britain (which will take some time because of the fleet imbalance)?

We need a likely agreed starting point for the next step.

< Message edited by warspite1 -- 4/12/2012 8:06:32 PM >


_____________________________

England expects that every man will do his duty - Horatio Nelson 1805.




(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 55
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/12/2012 7:17:34 PM   
Alfred

 

Posts: 3710
Joined: 9/28/2006
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: nicwb

quote:

In any case a blockade would not have produced the results seen in 1914-18 if most of Europe had remained neutral. Thus the slow strangulation experienced by Germany in WWI would not have resulted. France (and its UK ally if actually drawn into the conflict) would have to find another way to win the war. Remember that Kitchener's New Army basically took 18 months to become operational. Thus France would have to survive 1905 largely on its own resources until a British land army became operational in the winter of 1906


I'm not too sure about some of those assumptions - even during WW1 the Netherlands remained neutral. The Germans initially tried to utilise that plus a common border to avoid the blockade. The UK managed to subvert this by use of economic muscle and extension of the blockade to anyone carrying war related materials -there's an excellent account of this in Vol 1 of Huw Strachan's History First World War.

The Russians even if they couldn't field an army were already bound to support France and would have supported a blockade, France and the Uk essentially controlled both the entrances to the North Atlantic and Mediterranean (they both owned the Suez canal and could dictate access). In any event certain raw materials were peculiarly in the hands of the UK and France - most noticeably rubber.

Yes, France would need to survive on its own in the field for a while but 18mnths is a pessimistic estimate. The UK did have a standing army plus access to the Indian Army. They would both have been available well before 18mnths.

The other question mark is the Russian army. 1905 was probably the best chance for the Germans as the Russian army was partly occupied in the far East and still awaiting the impetus for modernization but it was huge and its mere existence was the reason for the Schlieffen plan in the first place. The German military didn't belive they could successfully take on both Russia and France at the same time. Even the absence of being shackled to the "Austrian dead man" would mean that the Russians would also be only facing the Germans.

As you say warv is a messy outcome and no plan survives first contact with the enemy.


In general terms these are reasonable points you make. However I don't think you have looked at the specific circumstances in sufficient detail. The circumstances which allowed the 1914-18 Entente blockade to eventually slowly squeeze the German and Central Powers economies would not apply to the situation put forward by Eric Rutins.

The Allied blockade of 1914-18 succeeded for three basic reasons.

1. So many men were conscripted by the Central Powers (I include all of them on purpose, see the point 2 below) that there was insufficient labour to maintain domestic food and raw material production to meet the greatly increased demand for production. In this 1905 scenario we are dealing with a Europe basically still neutral. The Austro-Hungarian, the various Balkan and Turkish economies at the very least would still be able to generate their pre-war food surpluses and export them overland to Germany, thereby meeting the domestic German labour shortage resulting from conscription.

2. Because all of Europe was effectively involved in the war, trans-shipment of "war materiel" to the Central Powers could effectively be intercepted. This would not be the case in 1905. The close blockade of German ports would mean that neutral vessels sailing to neutral European countries would not encounter a blockading fleet on their way in to a neutral port. In WWI Dutch imports could be intercepted because a stand off long range blockade was instituted. This long range blockade was positioned that it could intercept ships heading for Dutch ports. Even so there was a strong case that international law (see point 3 below) did not authorise the setting up of a long range stand off blockade which caught neutral ships.

3. Ah international law. What does it matter if you break it provided you win the war and no one is left standing able to bring you to account for your illegal actions. Irrespective of which side of the legal fence regarding the legality of the Entente blockade of WWI one stands on, the simple irrefutable fact is that it greatly antagonised neutral powers. In WWI the Entente was able to get away with it because:

(a) the remaining few European neutral countries were too weak to effectively challenge the blockade.

(b) the one neutral power which could challenge the blockade, the USA was greatly antagonised by the blockade and made its displeasure known but fortunately for the Entente, the Americans were even more greatly aggrieved by the actions of German submarines. Recall the Lusitania and when that occurred plus the then efficacy of the Entente blockade. It was precisely the actions of the British Napoleonic blockade which directly led to the 1812 War. In 1905 the German submarine service was in its infancy and I cannot see it capable of producing the sort of results which would antagonise America. Thus if the British eventually instituted a long range stand off blockade which disrupted American trade with neutral Europe, I see American anger being directed only against Britain and a war between those two countries being a real possibility.

I therefore maintain that a 1905 blockade of Germany would not be a war winning tool. In view of the 1905 High Seas Fleet, the French alone could not assume they could maintain one. For one to exist at all would require Britain to enter the war and that in my view is highly problematical and almost certainly if it did occur, British entry would be delayed not the immediate entry (4 days is no delay) of 1914. As it would initially be a close blockade, it would both be inefficient in catching third party traffic and liable to be destroyed by German torpedo boats operating close to shore bases.

As to the Russian army. In 1905 their axis of advance into Germany would come out of Poland. Poland was one of the worst affected areas of the 1905 Revolution. Difficult to maintain an advance when your LOCs are under pressure and some of the troops have to be diverted to maintain the Tsar's authority.

The Indian army would be of no value on French battlefields in 1905. It could be used, as it was in WWI, to capture German colonies but that would not impact the decisive front. As I said, in 1905 there was no BEF and Anglo-Franco staff talks/planning was still far into the future. I cannot see how any hastily cobbled units of the territorial army would achieve the results of the BEF. Assuming Britain declared war early enough for the units to reach France in time to be used.

Alfred

(in reply to nicwb)
Post #: 56
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/12/2012 9:24:34 PM   
Alfred

 

Posts: 3710
Joined: 9/28/2006
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: warspite1

quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

Great post Alfred, thanks!

Now how do you see that outcome changing the events of the following 40 years?

Regards,

- Erik
Warspite1

I think in order to even begin thinking about that question we need to agree upon something else.

Consensus (pretty much) is that Germany wins a fight against the French in 1905 (with or without Britain - and Russia is unlikely to intervene (or intervene ineffectually) because of Japan issues). But what do the Germans do with that victory? What is the end game for the Kaiser?

Do they seek to keep France intact - but install a German puppet government? Do they pillage the place for all its worth, maybe take some territory and force the French to pay reparations then leave alone. Or do they occupy and incorporate into some Greater Germany? Do they then set about Russia or prepare for a war against Britain (which will take some time because of the fleet imbalance)?

We need a likely agreed starting point for the next step.


Hard to say with confidence what German war aims would have been in 1905. The German Weltpolitik of the first decade of the century had many competing voices. The only agreed objective was to make the Reich a world power and guarantee her security.

I would suggest that Bethmann-Hollweg's 1914 September Programme could be used as the basis of tentatively determining what a 1905 Franco-German war outcome might have been in mind.


  • possible acquisition of Belfort and the western slopes of the Vosges
  • dismantling of French forts
  • possible acquisition of the coastal strip Dunkirk to Boulogne - but also foreshadowed as a possible transfer to Belgium
  • definite acquisition of Briery for its iron orefield
  • impossition of a war indemnity, to be paid in instalments, sufficiently large enough to prevent France from spending any considerable sums on armaments for 15-20 years
  • an economic treaty with France which (a) secures the French market for German exports and excludes British commerce with France, and (b) prevents the French from discriminating against German enterprises in favour of French enterprises
  • acquisition of French colonies to further the overall objective of creating a continuous Mittelafrikanisches Kolonialreich


There is therefore no specific mention of acquiring, or dismantling the French navy. French territorial acquisition is fairly restrained but the clear intent is to reduce French economic strength. In fact the entire September programme really envisages
an early C20th Mitteleuropaische Zollverband, which would include France and not be dissimilar to the subsequent 1957 Treaty of Rome. Of course this Zollverband would be under German leadership.

Alfred

(in reply to warspite1)
Post #: 57
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/19/2012 5:05:08 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

Posts: 32921
Joined: 3/28/2000
From: Vermont, USA
Status: offline
Thanks Alfred, some good ideas. Assuming that, with Germany in a stronger position in Europe after 1905, and realizing this is getting off into wild assed guesses, when and how do you think WWI/WWII would occur, if at all?

_____________________________

Erik Rutins
Director of Product Development


For official support, please use our Help Desk: http://www.matrixgames.com/helpdesk/

Freedom is not Free.

(in reply to Alfred)
Post #: 58
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/21/2012 2:26:57 AM   
Alfred

 

Posts: 3710
Joined: 9/28/2006
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

Thanks Alfred, some good ideas. Assuming that, with Germany in a stronger position in Europe after 1905, and realizing this is getting off into wild assed guesses, when and how do you think WWI/WWII would occur, if at all?


I'm not certain that there would be a WWI at all. Instead I think one should be looking much more closely at internal conflict. Continuing on with this wild frontier country, Nostradamus would probably have made the following cryptic comments.

1. The economic union envisaged would probably have created economic tensions. With the Second Reich acting as a giant economic vacuum cleaner, I can see balance of payment difficulties creating domestic social tensions in the weaker economies.

2. The main diplomatic tension would now be between the UK and the Reich. Bethman-Hollweg's later view of shutting out British exports to France would have been extended to the rest of the economic union. This would have looked too much like Napoleon's Continental Blockade. As such it would have created a much deeper running sore than the naval race race between the two countries.

3. With the main tension now being UK-Germany, the more likely trigger for conflict between them probably stems from colonial rivalry. Less likely is from Germany supporting its Allies.

4. With a military and economic emasculated France, Britain could not fully rely upon French assistance in the event of war with Germany. The list of potential British allies is quite limited.

(a) Austria-Hungary was already too much under the sway of the Reich. Whilst Franz Joseph reigned, I don't see any realistic option for detaching Austrai from its German alliance.

(b) Italy is a possibility for changing sides. If Britain is of the view that Austria is too much in the German camp, it might consider Italy a useful counter weight to keep Austria occupied. The combination of good Anglo-Italian relations and bad Austro-Italian relations could see a British-Italian alliance,

(c) Russia is the big prize for Britain. An alliance between the two would make sense but Russia would be domestically weak thereby reducing the value of the alliance.

(d) The Dominions would probably be integrated much closer into Britain's military planning. I can see much greater pressure being brought onto Canada for it to maintain a bigger peacetime military establishment

5. People nowadays tend to overlook that the Second Reich was not really a democracy but an autocratic state built on the base of a military class, superimpossed upon many German principalaties. The Bismark social reforms of the 1880s had bought a certain level of social acceptance but there was always a divide between the rulers and the ruled. In August 1914 it was a surprise that the Social Democratic party, swept up in nationalist euphoria, voted in favour of war and to set aside the class "struggle".

In a scenario where Britain (and a few other countries) have a further 20-30 years of implementing political reforms and Wilhelm II still alive, I can see increased pressure within Germany for political and social reforms to increase. Exacerbated by the various different internal political and economic differences found in the various German lands. At the beginning of the century, it was Germany and not Russia which many thought would be the more likely to experience a Marxist revolution.

Alfred

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 59
RE: Hypothetical history... - 4/21/2012 11:36:00 AM   
oldspec4

 

Posts: 687
Joined: 11/1/2004
Status: offline
Some really good stuff in this discussion

(in reply to Alfred)
Post #: 60
Page:   <<   < prev  1 [2]
All Forums >> [General] >> General Discussion >> RE: Hypothetical history... Page: <<   < prev  1 [2]
Jump to:





New Messages No New Messages
Hot Topic w/ New Messages Hot Topic w/o New Messages
Locked w/ New Messages Locked w/o New Messages
 Post New Thread
 Reply to Message
 Post New Poll
 Submit Vote
 Delete My Own Post
 Delete My Own Thread
 Rate Posts


Forum Software © ASPPlayground.NET Advanced Edition 2.4.5 ANSI

0.127