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A Very Different WW1

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  • A Very Different WW1

    Everything happens the same until the actual war starts. Germany, unbeknown to others, has scrapped the Schleiffen Plan and decided to stand on the defensive against France. France has to launch an attack at Alsace-Lorraine. The Battle of The Frontiers. Germany withstands it. Meanwhile a joint German-Austro-Hungarian offensive pushes the Russians back on all fronts and Austria-Hungary has invaded and is defeating Serbia. What does England do? France having been beaten in the Battle of the Fontiers, contemplates going through Belgium to get at the Germans. Again, what does England do? Let me add this, the German navy has not sallied and tried to bombard French channel ports. But they have sailed against Russian targets and at this time are no threat to England.

    How do you guys think this plays out? Does England ignore the French violation of Belgium? Do they still think of Germany as a naval threat when the German High Seas Fleet sails eastward?

    Interested to see where this goes.
    Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

  • #2
    The Germans think that the Brits would join them, but the British might overlook or remain neutral.
    For despite the silly sayings about violence never settling anything, history IS changed on the battlefield: ask the National Socialist German Workers' Party.
    -Jerry Pournelle-
    Introduction to 'Hammer's Slammers'

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    • #3
      in fact it would be a smart German plan.


      England, would reluctantly remain neutral - as it has no caus belli on Germany.

      with German help, AH crushes Serbia by the end of 1914.

      German armies annihilate Russian field armies and seize Russian Poland by the end of 1914.

      at the end of the year, as good gentlemen that the Kaisers, Tsar and the president of France are, they all nicely agree to a truce and peace negotiations, perhapsfacilitated by England.

      and everybody lives happyly ever after.
      "Freedom cannot exist without discipline, self-discipline, and rights cannot exist without duties. Those who do not observe their duties do not deserve their rights."--Oriana Fallaci

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      • #4
        France's violation of Belgium neutrality would have placed England in a very difficult situation.

        Ignoring it mean loss of diplomatic credibility (and England as a naval power need this more than any other European power).

        Going at war against France mean giving more power to Germany and could lead it to control Europe returning England in a new Napoleonic era.

        Going at war against Germany would have been extremely difficult to justify.

        I guess that British reaction would depend of situation, if France is in difficulty and may lose too much in the war, an entry along her could be neccessary. If France maintain a status quo, England would most likely trying to obtain a white peace.

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        • #5
          Looking at the bigger picture, would there still have been discontent within Russia, especially after a resounding defeat by the Germans. Would we have seen the formation of the Bolsheviks, Lenin & Trotsky stirring it up and the Russian Revolution? Would the Russian monarchy survive?
          Hitler played Golf. His bunker shot was a hole in one.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Sign&Print Name View Post
            Looking at the bigger picture, would there still have been discontent within Russia, especially after a resounding defeat by the Germans. Would we have seen the formation of the Bolsheviks, Lenin & Trotsky stirring it up and the Russian Revolution? Would the Russian monarchy survive?
            the Communists came to power, roughly on two reasons:
            1. long war brought hardships that discontented the russian people on their governement (tsar)
            2. communists played well the turmoil and took power


            so if Germany beats Russia quickly. it's a defeat, loss of prestige (again) for the Tsar and Russia (after defeats against Japan in 1905) and probably would mean the abdication of Nicolas II, perhaps to his brother. perhaps more representation in the Duma. but not a revolution.
            but clearly with Russia out of the war, France alone would better have to negotiate or face teh onslaught of German ground and naval forces, all vastly superio to France's.
            "Freedom cannot exist without discipline, self-discipline, and rights cannot exist without duties. Those who do not observe their duties do not deserve their rights."--Oriana Fallaci

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            • #7
              We know that Germany was envious of Britain's naval supremacy. Would such a conflict have ended without a clash between both nations in the North Sea? I don't believe either of the two would want to stay tied up in port. I think it's possible we would've still had battles such as Dogger Bank, Jutland and a direct attack on Scapa Flow that may have ended with British, not German ships being scuttled.
              Hitler played Golf. His bunker shot was a hole in one.

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              • #8
                Im not sure whether scrapping the Schlieffen plan would make a difference in that surely Britain, France and Russia had treaties with each other regarding a war with Germanyanyway.In that Britain would have felt compelled to get involved because of its treaty obligations with France. Britain used that Old Belgian neutrality treaty as an excuse to get involved in reality as it wanted a war with Germany anyway. I find it highly unlikely that GB would not have used her obligations to France as an excuse to get involved in this scenario.In this event we have trench warfare along the German border with another stalemate leading to a slowly ground down Germany once again.
                My thought for a different outcome would be if the Germans really had kept to the Schlieffen Plan and managed to get round the back of Paris and taken it rather than detour south to attack to the east of Paris as they did in reality leading to the trench stalemate.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by copenhagen View Post
                  Im not sure whether scrapping the Schlieffen plan would make a difference in that surely Britain, France and Russia had treaties with each other regarding a war with Germanyanyway.In that Britain would have felt compelled to get involved because of its treaty obligations with France. Britain used that Old Belgian neutrality treaty as an excuse to get involved in reality as it wanted a war with Germany anyway. I find it highly unlikely that GB would not have used her obligations to France as an excuse to get involved in this scenario.In this event we have trench warfare along the German border with another stalemate leading to a slowly ground down Germany once again.
                  My thought for a different outcome would be if the Germans really had kept to the Schlieffen Plan and managed to get round the back of Paris and taken it rather than detour south to attack to the east of Paris as they did in reality leading to the trench stalemate.
                  But was Britain's treaty with France in support of a French attack on Germany? Remember I said that Germany stays on the defensive in the west and lets France wear herself out in the Battle of the Frontiers, and does not attack Belgium, ostensibly the reason the British came into the war.
                  Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

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                  • #10
                    Yes I read what you wrote which included everything happened the same until the war started, this means that the Britains attitiude to Germany would still be a hostile stance rather than a see what happens before we get involved stance that I think your advocating. As such when hostilities broke out I think Britain would get involved. The Belgium treaty was an excuse after years and years of build up rather an a single direct reason, so I cant see the British government being stopped from getting involved by a French offensive in 1914 if as you say the build up to August 1914 was exactly the same.
                    Last edited by copenhagen; 13 Aug 07, 14:14.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by copenhagen View Post
                      Yes I read what you wrote which included everything happened the same until the war started, this means that the Britains attitiude to Germany would still be a hostile stance rather than a see what happens before we get involved stance that I think your advocating. As such when hostilities broke out I think Britain would get involved. The Belgium treaty was an excuse after years and years of build up rather an a single direct reason, so I cant see the British government being stopped from getting involved by a French offensive in 1914 if as you say the build up to August 1914 was exactly the same.
                      Okay, I see that. So if I read you correctly, the naval competition is the real reason that Britain came in against Germany? Then other than on the seas, how does Britain help France and Russia? With no Belgian front, there is limited space for British troops to deploy or does Britain limit themselves to just naval action?
                      Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

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                      • #12
                        I wouldnt say it was necesarily entirely all the arms race;imperial ambitions of Germany, the treaties that had been built up and got out of control when mobilisation occured.


                        What does Britain do in this scenario as you asked?
                        Thats a good question Revans and open to speculation, Well at the very least, Britain would do what she always does in terms of European wars, use her navy to blockade Europe to prevent German imports. Also I would speculate that if Britain had gone to war in 1914 it probably would have done with as much enthusaiam as she did in reality so Kitcheners army may well have come to fruition anyway.I cant see the French having a problem with the Brits reinforcing their positions or taking them over in the northern sector while the French use their northern sector to bolster up in the south. Also I can see Britain trying to outflank the Germans through Belgium, yes thats ironic but I cant see the Allies respecting Beligian neutrality due to military necessity to be honest; if the war escalated as much as we're talking about.
                        Last edited by copenhagen; 13 Aug 07, 14:33.

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                        • #13
                          Ah, so if the British violate Belgian neutrality, then do the Belgians resist and do the Germans come to their aid? The Germans were also guaranteers of Belgian neutrality. And what would be the US reaction? And then do the Germans, by defending Belgium, assume the moral superiorty in the eyes of the world?


                          You can go crazy in the Alternate Timelines Forum!!!
                          Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

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                          • #14
                            Its just an intuition and thats all it can be to be honest but I think the Belgians know what side their bread is buttered on as I would think they can see the danger of German supremacy in Europe. The US attitude, at this point say 1914/15, Im not sure America is interested enough to get involved.They viewed it as a European issue anyway didnt they and only began to change over issues such as the lusitania etc.
                            Last edited by copenhagen; 13 Aug 07, 14:57.

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                            • #15
                              In that Britain would have felt compelled to get involved because of its treaty obligations with France.
                              England had no treaty with France. It lead French planificators to even discount any British particpation when they drew the Plan XVII.

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