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WWI- Japan sided with Germany

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  • WWI- Japan sided with Germany

    Say the Anglo-Japanese alliance was terminated in 1912. In 1914, Germany and Japan declared themselves allies. How would WWI play out.

    1.) Would the the Royal Navy spare ships to protect her Asian territories from Japanese and German forces.
    2.) If this happen, would the German Navy gain Battleship parity with the RN.

  • #2
    Let's see:

    The RN appropriates the four Kongo class battlecruisers under construction in Britain. So, the Japanese don't get those. This means the IJN has no dreadnoought battleships or battlecruisers before about 1917 when Fuso and Yamashiro complete.
    Severely weakened by their termination of naval engineering and construction exchange with the British and French the Japanese find themselves facing a powerful British - French Pacific squadron that has been reinforced by several older dreadnought type battleships from both countries.
    Worse, when the Allied powers win the war the Japanese are likely to lose possessions like Taiwan, Korea, and their island holdings like the Bonins. This would be a national disaster for Japan.
    Defeated in war and shamed by the loss of colonial holdings and even some land considered "Japanese." This might embolden Japan for a rematch but, it will also blunt Japanese ambitions on the Asian continent.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by T. A. Gardner View Post
      Let's see:

      The RN appropriates the four Kongo class battlecruisers under construction in Britain. So, the Japanese don't get those. This means the IJN has no dreadnoought battleships or battlecruisers before about 1917 when Fuso and Yamashiro complete.
      Severely weakened by their termination of naval engineering and construction exchange with the British and French the Japanese find themselves facing a powerful British - French Pacific squadron that has been reinforced by several older dreadnought type battleships from both countries.
      Worse, when the Allied powers win the war the Japanese are likely to lose possessions like Taiwan, Korea, and their island holdings like the Bonins. This would be a national disaster for Japan.
      Defeated in war and shamed by the loss of colonial holdings and even some land considered "Japanese." This might embolden Japan for a rematch but, it will also blunt Japanese ambitions on the Asian continent.
      Only that the Kongo was commisioned and in service by 1913 and Hiei, Kirishima, and Haruna were built in Japan. Hiei was commision in Aug 1914 and Kirishima and Haruna in 1915.

      The Fuso and Yamashiro were completed in 1915; Ise in 1916 and Hyuga in 1917.

      The British will not weaken the Home Fleet in defence of her Pacific colonies. Those pre-dreadnaught are toast. Think how much damage Admiral Von Spee would caused on British Indian Ocean shipping.

      Japan taking Dutch East Indies is certainly doable.

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      • #4
        Here is what I think would happen.

        1.) Supported by the powerfuil Japanese Fleet, the German East Asian Squadron wreck havok on British Colonies on the Indian Ocean and Pacific.

        2.) Japan mobilizes her army and prepares to invade British, French, and Duth colonies in SE Asia.

        3.) Fear of Japanese attack, Australia and NZ gave UK an ultimatum to send some of the Grand Fleet to protect them or they will entertain a separate peace with Germany and Japan.

        4a.) UK does not comply as her Dreadnaught superiority over the German fleet is razor thin. Australia and NZ pulls out of the war for a promise of no, Japanese invasion.

        5a.) Japan invades Hongkong, Indochina, Malaya, Singapore, and Dutch East Indies but abides with treaty with Australia and NZ.

        OR

        4a.) Britain agrees to send help thereby weakening her home fleet. German fleet has parity and engages in a fleet action.

        5a.) German Fleet defeats RN home fleet and Japan defeats RN fleet in PAcific. Britain pulls out of war.

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        • #5
          Japan also had Satsuma and something similar, and a LOT of pre-dreadnoughts.... like the ones that served at Jutland.

          NZ and Australia seem a bit out of reach for Japan in 1914, but the rest seems do-able. Could this trigger an earlier US entry into the war?
          "Why is the Rum gone?"

          -Captain Jack

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          • #6
            Here is the Japanese NAvy in WW I

            http://www.naval-history.net/WW1NavyJapanese.htm

            French Navy

            http://www.naval-history.net/WW1NavyFrench.htm

            Austrian
            http://www.naval-history.net/WW1NavyAustrian.htm
            Last edited by IDonT4; 10 Oct 09, 22:04.

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            • #7
              Ah, lloks like we forgot the French, and once Italy joins in they need something to do.

              Things are starting to look more equal.
              "Why is the Rum gone?"

              -Captain Jack

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              • #8
                Russia would have been carved up like thanksgiving turkey

                Germany, Austria, Turkey, and Japan would be salivating over Russia. With Japan switching sides ANZAC troops would be pulled to the Pacific, thus opening up gaping holes in Europe. England, France, and Russia would have had to deplete their western fleets to the Pacific or lose most of their territories. Ship to ship, the Germans were generally superior to the British, and at even odds Jutland would have been a British disaster. Transfers and unresticted submarine warfare might have knocked Britain out, or ended the war favorable to the Central Powers.
                "America has gone to hell since John Wayne died". - Al Bundy

                "One finger is all any real American needs"

                "A gesture is worth a thousand words - but you usually only need two"

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                • #9
                  If Japan enters the war would the USA immediately intervene?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by tcox View Post
                    If Japan enters the war would the USA immediately intervene?
                    What would the reason be? Japan is not invading China at this time.

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                    • #11
                      Japan, for some reason, breaks its valuable defensive alliance with Britain.

                      Japan lays siege to Hong Kong and takes a couple of islands, perhaps also with landings in Malaya, Indochina, and in Russian territory.

                      More Australian and Indian troops are held back to garrison British & French colonies. The Dardanelles offensive never happens. Pre-Dreadnoughts, along with the odd British battlecruiser and French battleship, take up stations probably on Singapore and somewhere in the Indies. Each Entente squadron will probably be defeated by the Japanese fleet but at great cost to Japan, so there is no large naval engagement.

                      Japanese expansion into significant European colonies in Asia is a threat to U.S. interests, so a U.S. battle squadron sets sail to the Phillipines and act menacingly. The USA is offered territory from German and Japanese possessions by the Entente.

                      Japan wins the sieges of Hong Kong and Vladivostock but has no logistical capacity to go any further. Japan offers peace on the basis of an enlarged Japanese sphere of influence in Siberia and China. Russia accepts but Britain and France do not. British and French submarines arrive from the North sea and Mediterranean theatre where they have little to do, and conduct aggressive patrols against Japanese merchant shipping. Transpacific trade with Japan is largely halted by French and British cruisers. A Franco-British squadron conducts large-scale raids against occupied Hong Kong and around the China Sea. This prompts the withdrawal of the Japanese fleet to home waters...
                      My board games blog: The Brass Castle

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                      • #12
                        I don't think that it's reasonable to assume that Japan would have stopped at Vlad, they could have ripped into Siberia the same way they ripped into Manchuria just ten years before.

                        What I wonder is, did Japan have a plan, in 1914? What really carried them so far in 1941 was the result of months and months of careful, detailed planning.... did they have any Staff work in place at the start of WW1?
                        The swift and sure way the IJN began working with the RN, particularly in convoy work, suggests that they have a very different focus.
                        "Why is the Rum gone?"

                        -Captain Jack

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Exorcist View Post
                          I don't think that it's reasonable to assume that Japan would have stopped at Vlad, they could have ripped into Siberia the same way they ripped into Manchuria just ten years before.

                          What I wonder is, did Japan have a plan, in 1914? What really carried them so far in 1941 was the result of months and months of careful, detailed planning.... did they have any Staff work in place at the start of WW1?
                          The swift and sure way the IJN began working with the RN, particularly in convoy work, suggests that they have a very different focus.
                          Japan actually supported the pro Tzarist forces and sent an army in Siberia, which stayed there until the mid 1920's.

                          Japanese goals in WWI was to gain as much of the German colonies in the Pacific as possible. After Tsingtao and the other Pacific possessions were captured, the Japanese military did not do as much except provide for convoy escort.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Exorcist View Post
                            I don't think that it's reasonable to assume that Japan would have stopped at Vlad, they could have ripped into Siberia the same way they ripped into Manchuria just ten years before.
                            Perhaps - but what is there in Siberia?

                            Manchuria is populous, has reasonable agriculture, and exploited coal and mineral reserves. Once you get beyond what is now the Russian Primorksy Krai into Siberia, you end up with mountains, marshes, timber, fish and a vast inhospitable area.

                            But yes, Japan in 1914 was cautious and Anglophile, there was no grand design for seizing a load of European colonies at great risk.
                            My board games blog: The Brass Castle

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