Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

Raesene wrote:Nicely written - why do I have the feeling Garrett is likely going to lose one of his sons :-( ?
I have that reputation.... :angelic:

I mean, in the SDNW3 game I was going to kill off his 3 year old daughter. Until Thanas asked me - pleaded a bit, IIRC, it's been over six years... - to not actually have the wound be fatal.

....speaking of Thanas... you still reading? Or has my tendency to end up at war with Germany irritated you? :wink: Or your evident disappointment that the game doesn't use the historical navies of the starting point? I can see why that's a letdown, actually.

Anyway... Yeah, I can see why you think poor Thomas is not going to be coming back home. This is essentially proto-WWI. I just don't keep handy maps of the pre-1914 Franco-German border so I'm not detailing the land fighting very much. Plus I have to deal with the game not often doing major land combat events, implying there is no ground fighting. I sometimes imply such with the "your ally gains X VP!" events, of course. But if I did that all the time, I'd basically be doing nothing with French events but implying they were beating the Germans in ground fighting, and that gets old. And will probably irritate Thanas if he's still reading. :P
Thank you for the effort; how much time do you need to write an installment ? Probably longer than playing it out.
Essentially, I play, take screenshots and save them, and jot down quick one sentence notes in a google doc on what happened. Battles are the most challenging to do this because I can't always tell what moments in said battle will be the crucial ones. I can sometimes guess, but not always. So I just take screenshots of what seems important... assuming I don't accidentally let the minute pass because by habit I'm running the battle on continuous and not minute-by-minute. Hence my forgetting to take a shot of the Bainbridge finishing off that last German destroyer in the recent Battle of the Bismarcks.

Then during the quiet hours at work (I work overnight security at a desk) I load google docs on my smartphone, take out my android keyboard, and turn the notes on what happened into a fuller description. When it feels right and I have a good idea on it, I add character scenes or things like the Churchill speech about the commissioning of the Sovereign to fill the posts out and give the world more character.

A lot of my writing is done at work right now. In fact, virtually the entire fight between the Anchorage and the Hela back in the 1903 war was written at work.
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"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

Eternal_Freedom wrote: Hmm, a 3rd Constitution...and we haven't had Enterprise yet? Bah!
I try to maintain a theme with class names. Hence the starting Fearless and Relentless in one class. Or Sovereign and Superb. With Constitution I decided to go with freedom/republic-sounding ship names. Republic, Liberty, Independence.

Still, we have 20 years of in-game stuff. Don't worry, I'm sure we'll get an Enterprise soon enough. :)
”A Radical is a man with both feet planted firmly in the air.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

DONALD J. TRUMP IS A SEDITIOUS TRAITOR AND MUST BE IMPEACHED
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Eternal_Freedom »

I get that, I was just assuming a somewhat different theme for this class :D
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
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Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

Argh! I just laid the Aurora (better than the design I posted earlier, since I have some new techs) and what happens? Three months later, my research leads me to new shiny 15" quality 0 guns!

FUCK FUCK FUCK.

I'd scrap and re-design... but it'd cost me 7.6 million in sunk design costs that I'd have to pay again and half a year, probably. :(

Edit: Oh, and fuck Germany. Two months of peace and they pull bullshit. :finger: I think I may end up with a Round Three with the Krauts... :P
”A Radical is a man with both feet planted firmly in the air.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

DONALD J. TRUMP IS A SEDITIOUS TRAITOR AND MUST BE IMPEACHED
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Eternal_Freedom »

Hmm...how feasible would 12 15" guns in triple turrets be for a 1910-era dreadnought?
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Purple »

And whilst we are at major armament just how many guns can you physically cram into a design? Like say you wanted turrets, casemates, the lot. How many guns will the game let you have? Also, how many of those can be of the biggest and heaviest kind?
It has become clear to me in the previous days that any attempts at reconciliation and explanation with the community here has failed. I have tried my best. I really have. I pored my heart out trying. But it was all for nothing.

You win. There, I have said it.

Now there is only one thing left to do. Let us see if I can sum up the strength needed to end things once and for all.
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Eternal_Freedom »

The historical record was IIRC seven main battery turrets, twin mounts for 12" guns on a ship the British built for Brazil I think, then commissioned her as (I think) HMS Agincourt. It was not considered a successful design.

The Japanese Fuso class has six twin mounts for 14" guns, and a few early German dreadnought had six turrets in a hexagonal layout I think. I don't know if those were useful designs however.

Ultimately there is a reason why most navies all gravitated to 3 or 4 main turrets in two pairs on the centreline, it seems to be the best arrangement.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Purple »

I just wonder how crazy the game will let you go.
It has become clear to me in the previous days that any attempts at reconciliation and explanation with the community here has failed. I have tried my best. I really have. I pored my heart out trying. But it was all for nothing.

You win. There, I have said it.

Now there is only one thing left to do. Let us see if I can sum up the strength needed to end things once and for all.
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Eternal_Freedom »

I think Steve said early one (when we both asked this) that the limit was about 70,000 tonnes and 18" guns.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by U.P. Cinnabar »

Eternal_Freedom wrote:The historical record was IIRC seven main battery turrets, twin mounts for 12" guns on a ship the British built for Brazil I think, then commissioned her as (I think) HMS Agincourt. It was not considered a successful design.

The Japanese Fuso class has six twin mounts for 14" guns, and a few early German dreadnought had six turrets in a hexagonal layout I think. I don't know if those were useful designs however.

Ultimately there is a reason why most navies all gravitated to 3 or 4 main turrets in two pairs on the centreline, it seems to be the best arrangement.
Less maintenance intensive would be my guess.

So, what, beside the fact they were painfully slow, would be the limitations of a design such as the Nelson-class?
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Eternal_Freedom »

No aft firepower from the main battery for one. Plus IIRC they were only "painfully slow" by the standards of WWII, when they were built in ~1926 I think the sped was adequate. The large rear superstructure also acted as a sail in windy conditions, making maneuvering difficult.

That being said, it did allow three main battery turrets with a much shorter armoured citadel than a conventional arrangement would permit. Tough that was so they could fit into the Washington Treaty restrictions, something Cascadia won't be limited by.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by U.P. Cinnabar »

Eternal_Freedom wrote:No aft firepower from the main battery for one. Plus IIRC they were only "painfully slow" by the standards of WWII, when they were built in ~1926 I think the sped was adequate. The large rear superstructure also acted as a sail in windy conditions, making maneuvering difficult.

That being said, it did allow three main battery turrets with a much shorter armoured citadel than a conventional arrangement would permit. Tough that was so they could fit into the Washington Treaty restrictions, something Cascadia won't be limited by.
I thought they were considered slow from the beginning of their careers, as the sailors of the Royal Navy began comparing them, unfavorably, to their fleet oilers(calling them the Nelsol and the Rodsol, respectively).

I'd have thought having all main-battery fire concentrated forward would make the Nelsons more effective, were their Ts to be crossed by an opposing capital ship. But, yeah, it would be disadvantaged in a stern chase, and its maneuvering was difficult at best.
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Eternal_Freedom »

Eh, the speed issue is one I'm not entirely clear about.

However, with their turret arrangement, only A and B could fire forwards - the third turret was at the same height as A. The class had no advantage in firepower on any arc compared to, say, an Iowa and lacked main battery firepower in an arc of something like 100 degrees centered on her stern. Tat's a pretty big gap.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by U.P. Cinnabar »

And, now you got me. I completely forgot the third turret wasn't superfiring. Never mind, then.
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
—29th Scroll, 6th Verse of Ape Law
"Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter. The uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense.”
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

Eternal_Freedom wrote:Hmm...how feasible would 12 15" guns in triple turrets be for a 1910-era dreadnought?
Not very. That would probably put me over 40,000T unless I skimped on armor and/or speed.

And I have seen the AI do some weird designs. Including, yes, 15 guns with five triple turrets.

And the limit is more restrictive than that, EF. 52,000T is the largest you can go with the game engine. You can get 18" guns, but I find that given armor penetrations late in the game, you're probably better off with 16". More guns means more chances to hit, and the spotting ranges means you'll rarely engage beyond 16" range anyway.
”A Radical is a man with both feet planted firmly in the air.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

DONALD J. TRUMP IS A SEDITIOUS TRAITOR AND MUST BE IMPEACHED
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

July 1909

Image

On patrol in the Sea of Japan on July 5th, the cruiser Richland came upon the new 900 ton Russian destroyer Boevoi.

Image

For an hour she gave chase to the enemy destroyer, landing a number of hits with her 7" and 5" guns. Finally, after about 110 minutes, the Boevoi took a half-dozen hits from the Richland's guns and was completely destroyed.

Image


The Admiralty
Portland, Federal District
8 July 1909



The wire was staring Admiral Garrett in the face. Secretary Chumsleigh stood across from his desk. The younger man, still in his late 30s, cut a fine figure of privilege and upbringing, the kind you expected from a Conservative cabinet minister.

It was a report from the latest supply run to Saipan. The Lincoln and Tubman had been preparing to rendezvous with boats from the island to transfer the supplies. But none came on time. Only when the commander of the Tubman decided to withdraw did they spot a single boat ferrying three wounded men, two islanders and one of the Spanish landowners. They reported that the Germans had overrun de la Vega's last holdout the prior day. The rebel leader had died in a final last stand with most of his men. The Germans had caught all but a handful of those who escaped.

"We failed those men," Chumsleigh said. "Your Navy has not done its job."

The Admiral gave his civilian superior an intent look. "My Navy cannot force the Germans to commit to a general engagement, sir. All I can do is have the ships on hand to meet them if they try one."

"We went to war over these people. And we have failed them. How will that look to the country?"

"The country is more concerned with our boys being sent to the meatgrinder in France," the Admiral reminded him. "The simple fact is that the Germans have sent a hefty force to their islands in the Pacific and have not given battle yet. We could not force landings with their fleet still so strong. Had we been given the Japanese squadrons we asked, I might have been able to force the issue with the Germans. But the Japanese Navy has devoted itself to facing the Russians still in Port Arthur and Vladivostok and the French refuse to commit their forces in Indochina to a general action." The Admiral set his hands on the table. "There is nothing more I can do, sir. I simply do not have the means."

"Those damned Socialists will use this, though…"

"Likely. But again, they already have a more potent weapon. They get it every Monday with the weekly casualty reports from France."

The point was blunt, but it worked. And Chumsleigh, indeed most of the government, knew damn well why his thoughts were on France.

"My son Charles is going there you know," Chumsleigh remarked quietly. "He's a Lieutenant in the 2nd Victoria."

"I had heard," the Admiral said delicately.

"I hear your son is doing well at Esquimalt. Top marks. They say he may place first in his class."

"I know."

Chumsleigh had nothing more to say.


Image





Nobody at the Admiralty dared to stop him when Admiral Garrett left early. Nobody would dare. No report, no wire, was so important that it would risk him missing the train.

His waiting ride was not the old horse-drawn cabs that were still common when he arrived at the Admiralty a decade ago. Now the taxi cab was a horseless one, a motor vehicle, and the driver nodded respectfully and accepted his call to be taken to the central station.

He arrived and was met by a sea of green uniforms. Young men with looks varying from miserable to eager milled about. All had bags with them. Some were saying goodbye to teary-eyed young women or even more distraught older women, as well as men up to the Admiral's age who looked on with as much pride as concern. Some of them were in uniform too, Army Green or Navy Blue-Gray.

Of course, none had the same five stars he had on his uniform.

Whenever he was noticed, all of those in uniform tended to snap off the best salute they could muster. Sometimes with faces paled by the realization that the highest ranking officer in the Navy was walking in their midst.

He made his way through the crowd until he spotted Rachel and Tom. He moved toward them, returning salutes as they were given, and could see Sophie hugging her brother once he cleared enough heads to see the younger children. Thomas was in Army green, of course. He had the second stripe of a full Private. The moment he saw his father, Thomas' right hand flew up from his embrace with his sister to give him a salute.

In a private setting, or if he had been in civilian clothing, the Admiral would not have bothered with such. But in public, in full uniform, formalities had to be kept. He returned the salute. "At ease, Private," he said. "The only order I have to give is that you give your father a goodbye hug."

"Yes sir," was his son's reply. Thomas and the Admiral embraced warmly.

"Tommy, why are you leaving?", little Gabriela asked. At four and a half she had to crane her neck to look at her tall brother. "I don't want you to go."

She had said the same thing when he left for training. And the answer was just as hard to give. Children her age didn't easily understand things like military drafts or obligations of citizenship. "It's something I have to do, Gabbie," Thomas answered.

Sophie looked at Admiral Garrett with a sullen expression. He gave her a patient, quiet look. She was angry with him for his part in leading the nation in the war, a war she hated.

"Ah, there you are."

Heads turned. Rafael Vallejo stepped, dressed in his own fine suit. He had likely just stepped out from the Senate where he sat with the Government. The years were showing even more upon his countenance, but he still managed the aristocratic bearing that Admiral Garrett had always seen him with. As a Senator he was respected and listened to. Word had it he was on the President's short list to become a caretaker Secretary of State should Lakeland's government fall hard enough that an election was mandated.

The Admiral suspected that there was more to it than just that. His father-in-law's political standing was one of the few things he had left as a widower and it gave him a solid excuse to be away from the estate in California and with his grandchildren.

"Pappi." Thomas let his grandfather embrace him.

"Ah. Thomas." Vallejo pronounced it as the Spanish "Tomas". "Look at you. A fine man now." He nodded with approval. "You remind me of my younger brother."

Rachel showed a slight grimace at that. She had never met her uncle; Diego Vallejo had died fighting Emperor Maximilian's armies at San Joaquin.

"Be brave," Rafael insisted. "You are a citizen of the Republic and you must always stand firm against the monarchists of Europe."

"Of course, Pappi."

"You'll do us proud," the Admiral said with certainty. For the sake of Thomas' relationship with his grandfather, he didn't remark on what he knew had to be going through his son's heart and mind right now. Thomas was not Raffie. He was chafing under military discipline, hated it, and didn't want to go off to a war when he had an education to seek.

"Please, write often," Rachel insisted.

"I will, Ma."

"I'll write to you. Every week," Sophie vowed.

"I'd hope so, Sophie. You send Raffie a letter every week. His classmates probably think you're his mom," Thomas teased.

The teasing won him another hug from his sister.

A voice began to bellow, the familiar harsh tones of a sergeant or, in the Admiral's experience, a chief. The train to San Francisco - and the transports carrying them to Europe - was due to leave shortly, and the young soldiers were being ordered to embark for the trip. Thomas picked up his bag. "This is it," he said, taking in a breath. He had never been overseas before. His whole life had been spent on the Vallejo estate, visiting Admiral Garrett's parents in Astoria, or in the family's formerly-rented house in Portland. All he knew of the sea came from his father or Uncle Reggie's' stories.

Seeing Thomas' discomfort, Admiral Garrett and Rachel each put a hand on his shoulders. "It'll be okay," his father insisted.

"God will be with you," his mother said.

Gabriela gave him a final tight hug around the knee and leg. Sophie added her own hug. Thomas returned them as long as he dared before pulling away.

He had no more words before he joined the line of soldiers being marched onto the train.

The family stayed to watch him leave. Each of them, save little Gabbie, knew it might be the last time they saw him.



The Bremerton finishes her working up period, giving the Cascadian fleet another much-needed cruiser to deal with enemy raiders and scout for the fleet.

Condenser trouble forces Juneau to put into Brest for repairs.

Image

With their planned summer offensive only weeks away, the Germans were nevertheless concerned. The loss of Tsingtao had jolted their confidence, and their one ally was uncertain and wraught with internal tensions. The Tsar was almost begging his cousin Kaiser Wilhelm to support a peace initiative.

Image

The war party in Berlin were aghast at the idea of seeking peace when Germany had yet to take enemy territory or do anything to ensure it was seen as the victor. But Chancellor von Bülow was wavering. If something wasn't done, the peace would be sought without their input. So they tried to co-opt the peace movement by sending peace feelers through the Embassy in London. The terms were left vague, but when pressed by Ambassador Muniz the German Ambassador had to admit that Germany was not offering real terms and he had no authority to accept any Allied terms.

In Portland the German offer was therefore dismissed out of hand. The Cascadian fleet was preparing an attack on Port Arthur, with an intention to link up with the Japanese in Manchuria, while Kamchatka was considered an alternative target with a seizure of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskiy to guarantee the North Pacific's routes to Japan were clear of Russian attacks.

Image

Admiral Garrett was presented with a report from the Office of Naval Design and Procurement on new Q-ships to employ against the growing German and Russian submersible arms. These vessels would be disguised as fishing trawlers or small merchant ships, prompting enemy ships to surface and not waste valuable torpedoes upon such a light target, upon which the Q-ships could engage the enemy with hidden deck guns and damage the submersible on the surface so it could not dive.

Some concerns were voiced that this would drive the enemy to simply cease surface encounters and torpedo everything. But this would be a violation of the cruiser rules of raiding warfare and would additionally force ships to either give up such light targets, or use some of their limited torpedo armament to engage minor targets.

Image

The raiding war continued with few successes. The Fairbanks sank a Russian merchant in African waters again. The Russian armored cruiser Rossiya found itself too low on fuel and had to make port, where she was interned. The Russian cruiser Avrora sunk a Cascadian merchant southwest of Dutch Harbor.

Image

The Japanese Navy forced the Russian Far Eastern Squadron to retreat back into port and abandon a needed supply run to its Sakhalin detachment.

Image


The wartime battleship program suffered jolts during the month. Delays of critical equipment delayed the Constitution. An anti-war strike among transport workers led to a near riot at Reilly & Collette in Bremerton that caused serious delay to the Republic.

Image


Toward the end of the month, the long-awaited Russo-German offensive began in earnest. The two forces made several initial breakthroughs that nearly shattered the Japanese forces on the front. General Brewer, with his army rebuilt and reinforced up to 550,000 men in two main armies and a reserve army formation, managed to hold his sector of the trenches. With the cooperation of the French forces to the south they began a counter-attack against the Russo-German flanks.


August 1909

On the second of August, the Russo-German offensive stalled unexpectedly, falling well short of their desired targets. The Franco-Cascadian counter-attack, and General Nogi's successful rallying of his battered troops, blunt the enemy offensive. The Russian contingent takes the brunt of the counter-attack and is the first to retreat, forcing the Germans to follow.

The failed offensive drives a wedge into the Russo-German alliance. It also has a terrible effect back in St. Petersbug, where the war is becoming even more unpopular. Russians began to whisper darkly that the Tsar and his German wife were sacrificing their nation for the needs of Germany.

Naval Artillery reported a failure in their attempt to create new target designators for fire control systems.

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Fairbanks and Las Vegas enjoy great success in African and European waters. Fairbanks sinks 3 Germans and a Russian in its zone while Las Vegas bags even more, sinking 4 Germans and 3 Russian merchants in the waters of Northern Europe.

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The German cruiser Nymphe sinks 2 Cascadian ships in Southeast Asia.

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Midway on August 22nd, the Vancouver intercepts the Russian raider Avrora off the coast of China.

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Avrora got a good start in, taking out one of Vancouver's turrets with 4" shellfire and forcing Vancouver to maneuver hard to evade torpedoes. But by the twenty minute mark the smaller Russian cruiser had taken several shels from the protected cruiser's powerful batteries.

Then at 1306 the Vancouver put a torpedo into the Russian ship that crippled her, allowing 5" shellfire to finish her off six minutes later.

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Japanese naval forces conducted another sweep of the Sea of Japan, sinking several Russian trawlers and forcing the Russian Pacific Fleet back into Vladivostok.

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At the end of August, worldwide naval spending and fleet sizes were as follows.
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September 1909

The Viper and Shark were commissioned, adding to the submersible force.

However, the arrival of German and Russian reinforcements moving across the coast caught the Shark out on her maiden cruise. She was sunk before she could submerge safely.

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German munitions captured in Tsingtao proved of great value to Naval Ordnance's design efforts. Insights into German shell design allowed them to introduce SAP shells to the Cascadian arsenal.
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A German submersible investigating Chuuk was caught by destroyers at daylight and sunk.


The Fairbanks continued her career with another German merchant sunk off the coast of Cameroon.

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The Russian armored cruiser Gromoboi intercepted the Las Vegas off Brittany. The Las Vegas turned southeast to seek shelter under French coastal defenses. Gromoboi gave chase and nearly hit her with a 9" shell. Ultimately, though, she could not overtake and destroy the protected cruiser before night fell and the two ships lost contact, ending a fruitless chase of two hours.



The Admiralty
Portland, Federal District
15 September 1909



The map on the wall made Admiral Garrett clench his fists in aggravation. It showed the latest reports from coast watchers.

The Germans and Russians had sailed two pre-sovereign battleships and attached escorts west around Cape Horn instead of east through Suez. Those ships were now passing through and, having seen that the Cascadian Navy - by necessity - had sent its heavy units to Asia, they were putting up a momentary blockade across the coast. Merchant ships were stuck in every harbor from Cabo to Vancouver, their captains unwilling to depart until the Cascadian Navy could certify it had dealt with the enemy forces.

The entire war was one large frustration for Admiral Garrett now. He looked over at Captain Holmes, whom he had not yet told was up to promotion to Rear Admiral. "This war needs to end," he muttered.

"Sir?"

"We have our victory. Tsingtao is ours. But the Germans are throwing everything they have available into the Bismarcks and Marianas. They won't let us take anything in either chain. And I don't see that changing anytime soon. At this rate, even if Japan threw themselves completely into these operations, we would lack the means to overwhelm them. The same for Russia. We can't concentrate on them strongly enough because the Germans won't let us." Admiral Garrett shook his head. "We need to end the war."

"Have you spoken to the Cabinet?"

"Lakeland will not hear of it." The Admiral shook his head. "He is convinced that if we hold out longer, we might pressure the German populace into giving in first. I think he is a fool. The casualties we're facing with no gain, they are only making Flagg stronger. The way things are going, he will topple the Government in Parliament by next spring."

Holmes seemed to consider that. "Do you think he could become the next Secretary of State, then?"

"Any peace coalition will have to include the Socialists. They might not make Flagg Secretary of State, but I fully expect him to get the Treasury or the Foreign Office." The Admiral shook his head. "Politics, Captain Holmes. They will always confound us. But yet, they are what our nation is run upon." The Admiral went over to another map. "Cut orders to Admirals Litchfield and MacCallister. I want the Fearless, Dauntless, and Victoria steaming back home. We must regain the confidence of the nation by securing the coast."

"Wouldn't Sovereign work better for that?"

Admiral Garrett shook his head. "No. I need her and Superb at Chuuk to meet the enemy if they sortie."

"Of course, sir. I'll wire the orders out as soon as you've signed them."

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October 1909

While the reinforcements steamed home, the Russo-German blockade fueled the anti-war fire more. The temporary loss of commerce and the work related to it rippled through the Cascadian economy, causing the market to tremble. Now Flagg's working class anti-war movement was joined by a growing hostility to the war by elements of the Cascadian elite, the financiers and industrialists who felt the war had been a mistake.

Representative Flagg's efforts had been stymied by the fall of Tsingtao. But the casualty lists from France and this new crisis were strengthening him yet again. He pleaded with the working class of the country to launch a General Strike and halt all war-making material to force the Lakeland government to ask for peace. Large-scale demonstrations and work stoppages were planned, and already a number of strikes had hit. At Burleigh & Armstrong's rifle-manufacturing plant in Eugene half the work force declared itself sick and refused to report for their shifts.

In response Attorney-General Caldwell again proposed that Flagg be arrested on charges of sedition. The National Marshals were instructed to prepare lists of Socialist Party leadership and known labor agitators to be swept up in a wave of arrests. Caldwell arranged for another Conservative Representative, Michael Richards of Yellowknife, to propose a "Defense Against Sedition" Act that would give the Government greater powers to meet labor unrest and anti-war strikes with force.

Again Matthews stepped in. He sent a message to the House and the Senate stating he would veto any bill that undermined the civil rights of the Cascadian populace. This in turn caused a renewed conflict between the Presidency and Secretary of State.



The Executive Mansion
Portland, Federal District
12 October 1909



President Matthews was in his smoking jacket and indulging in reading the latest wired copy of the Times from London when his assistant said Secretary of State Lakeland had come to see him. The President frowned and looked outside, whether a fall rainstorm was pouring over the darkened city. "It's nearly ten o'clock, sir," he remarked. "What brings you here?"

"I need you to stop being obstinate," Lakeland insisted. "The Sedition Act…"

"...is abhorrent," Matthews cut in.

"Necessary", Lakeland corrected. "It is necessary. Flagg and his people are out to destroy us."

"I have heard his rhetoric. And I have heard worse." Matthews put the paper down. "Say we do this. Say that we throw Flagg and his rabble-rousing allies into prison for the duration of the war. Maybe we even outlaw the Socialist Party as seditious. That's what Caldwell and Chumsleigh and the Conservatives want, after all."

"They may have a point."

"Going to cross the aisle, James?", Matthews inquired.

"Of course not." Lakeland wasn't ready to become a Tory, no. But he had to admit there were times he felt closer to the Conservatives than many of his own party.

"Back to my point… say we do this. And we do it without triggering a revolution in the streets. What will become of us then?" Matthews' expression was hard. "How long until our Government, or the next, decides that the Doves in the Democratic Party are also seditious? Or until we decide labor unions in general are wrong? Or university associations? Anyone who dares believe the war to be wrong?"

"What they believe is something else," Lakeland insisted. "But the anti-war movement is too public, too loud. It is undermining the national will."

"So you want to repress it. How is that any better? Repression poisons societies. It crushes the spirit of a people and pollutes their souls by teaching them they must be deceptive. That is not how our nation works, James. " Matthews shook his head. "It can't work that way. We must never let it get that way. Our nation must live up to its principles."

"What good will it do us if our principles are exploited by our enemies and we are defeated?"

"So it is better to destroy ourselves by destroying the Constitution we have sworn to protect?" Matthews shook his head. "No."

"You could cost us everything! Because of Flagg and the other trouble-makers, we could lose the war!'

"I would rather lose the war than lose my country," Matthews retorted.

Lakeland stared in anger for several more moments. He shook his head and departed.

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(Unrest back to 7)

Private yards used their war contracts to finance further yard expansions, in anticipation of even larger capital ships to be ordered in the coming years.

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The submersible Grayling was commissioned.

A Russian revolutionary figure, Leon Trotsky, had recently moved to Surrey to support Flagg's Socialist Party and direct it more toward the Marxist model he envisioned. Cascadian Military Intelligence officers proposed that Trotsky be slipped into Russia via Finland under an American passport.

However, when Lakeland brought this idea to his Cabinet and military commanders, Jake Roberts, Admiral Garrett, and General Landers unanimously rejected the proposal. "The man will set such a fire that we may be burned too," Admiral Garrett protested.

Attorney-General Caldwell, reacting to the rejection and the clear discontent of the intelligence officers at that rejection, ordered the National Marshals to arrest Trotsky as an enemy alien. Representative Flagg issued a protest in Parliament to no avail. Even some of his fellows - indeed, even Flagg himself to a degree - distrusted the militancy of Trotsky and his corner of the Russian revolutionary circles.

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Newer and better steel alloys have been developed for hulls.
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Engineers and architects in the Office of Naval Design and Procurement report to Admiral Garrett that they were working on various ship layout schemes that would permit five centreline turrets to be mounted on a ship. Perhaps even more, if requested
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A Russian submersible sank a merchant vessel south of Anchorage. The cruiser Flora, operating out of Petropavlosk-Kamchatskiy, sank another while patrolling to the southeast of Kamchatka. The Pamyat Azova found a ship along the coast of Columbia and sank her as well.

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Meanwhile in Africa the Fairbanks took three more German ships.
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The German fleet sortied a battlecruiser and other ships to raid Chuuk. The Battle Cruiser Squadron was on hand to meet them with the cruiser Olympia and the destroyers Lincoln, Stowe, Sisko, and Adama.

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The German force initially split up. Destroyers approached from the south and sank a Cascadian transport west of Chuuk. The Cascadian force caught up with them and sank one.

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While steaming back for Chuuk visual contact is made with the Von der Tann, a German battlecruiser, which sinks a patrol boat outside of the lagoon.

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It is late in the afternoon and Von der Tann will have to run, but as she does her gunners prove to be either good or lucky. Warrior takes several hits, one of which causes salt water to enter her feed tanks, damaging her machinery and costing her speed. Ranger and Reprisal continue to give chase and deliver hits on the Von der Tann. In the return fire Reprisal loses her aft turret. Another later hit along the end of the ship causes flooding while Warrior again takes a shell that sends salt water into her feed tanks.

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Concerned with the damage and the prospect of more flooding if the ship keeps a high speed, Rear Admiral John K. Lallard decides to order Reprisal back to Chuuk.

Ranger and Warrior sustain the chase even as night falls, keeping some visual contact.

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But despite extensive damage to her, the Von der Tann manages to avoid any critical machinery damage, while Warrior is still hobbled by the damage from her feed tanks. Both ships fall behind enough that contact with the Von der Tann is lost. The two battlecruisers return to Chuuk.

Luck had played a bizarre role on both sides of the battle. Von der Tann's lucky hits near the start of the battle had ensured her survival. Meanwhile a communications error had caused her sister ship, the Seydlitz, to be out of position to join the battle. Her participation might have made things even harder for the Cascadian force. As it was, Germany could claim a narrow victory on account of the damage inflicted on the Cascadian battlecruisers in total compared to her minor loss of a destroyer and heavy damage to just one battlecruiser.

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The Naval Design Office proposes a followup to the Kirk to replace war losses or begin replacing the decade-old Hull-class destroyers. The Pratchett-class has the same weapons as the Kirk, but with the turrets and wing torpedo mounts re-arranged. Newer machinery allows the new design to be proposed with a speed of 33 knots.

For the moment, however, none are ordered: Admiral Garrett and his subordinates deemed that the Navy had sufficient destroyers already.

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November 1909

Naval Ordnance engineers reported that access to captured German torpedoes from the fleet locker at Tsingtao were helping their efforts to improve Cascadian torpedo design. New horizontal turbines would improve torpedo performance when perfected for use.

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Ship designers reported they were ready to consider warships with five or more centreline turrets.

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The Grayling sank a Russian ship off Kamchatka. Among the surface raiders, the Fairbanks claimed 2 more in West Africa and the Juneau another two in the waters north of Ireland.

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The Marine Nationale sortied and bombarded the German coast near Emden.

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A German sortie against Formosa was chased off by the Nihon Kaigun. During the resulting battle, the German destroyer S-24 was sunk by Japanese shellfire.

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The German battlecruiser Hindenburg nearly caught the Las Vegas south of Ireland on the 9th of the month. But she maneuvered out of visual range for several crucial minutes and the German ship was unable to re-attain visual contact before the Las Vegas made good her escape to Brest.



Equipment shortages, blamed in part on Socialist labor sabotage by some commentators, delayed the Republic by another month.
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December 1909

The Russian mobilization had caused disruptions to the farm labor workforce, resulting in chaos in the harvest that reduced the year's yield and sent food prices up. The sudden shock of rising food prices caused further demonstrations in the largest cities in Russia.

Tsar Nicholas then compounded the problem by declaring a nationwide ban on alcohol, under the belief that this would improve worker productivity, cause families to have more money for food while causing the grain used in producing alcoholic drinks to be diverted to food markets, and that sobriety in the Russian populace would win them favor in the eyes of God. But the result was simply to anger the populace more and, as it turned out, undermine the Russian treasury due to the state monopoly on vodka and other drinks. Alcohol sales went underground instead.

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Design teams reported a need to rethink attempts at planning triple bottoms for new warships.

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Thanks in part to examination of German torpedoes, the Naval Ordnance Office reported to the Admiralty that they were ready to implement horizontal turbines in Cascadian torpedo design.

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Cascadian and German subs each sink 1 ship.

Fairbanks continued her active success in African waters, sinking 3 German merchants for the month. The Anchorage sank three more in the waters off Celebes and Papua New Guinea.

Meanwhile the Russian cruisers Pallada and Flora continued to sortie from Vladivostok and Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskiy, sinking three Cascadian ships during the month.

Steady losses to the German merchant marine combined with the drop in grain production in Russia caused food shortages during the winter in Germany. The resulting hardships further lowered German morale.

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Japanese ships shelled German fleet facilities on Saipan.

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Juneau had a scare in her hunting grounds north of Ireland. On December 3rd in the afternoon, an enemy battlecruiser, Moltke-class, intercepted her. The Juneau fled east toward Scotland, trying to maintain the distance despite the German ship's superior speed. Thankfully for her crew, the sun set just before the German ship reached firing range, and nightfall caused the Germans to lose visual contact.

With a German battlecruiser making a second interception in as many months, the Cascadian Admiralty wired to France to order the two ships to change their bases. Juneau was to transfer to Oran and go after German and Russian ships in the Mediterranean. Las Vegas was ordered to report to Martinique to pursue enemy shipping in the Caribbean.


The Admiralty ordered four more submersibles. The Shark and Tarpon would be re-used as names, and joined with the Porpoise and Grampus.

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”A Radical is a man with both feet planted firmly in the air.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

DONALD J. TRUMP IS A SEDITIOUS TRAITOR AND MUST BE IMPEACHED
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

January 1910

The Admiralty
Portland, Federal District
2 January 1910


The new year was not as festive as it might have been. Not with the war on, or the ongoing social strife from the growing strength of the anti-war movement.

And, for Admiral Garrett and his family, it was the empty house. One son was in his final year at the Naval Academy. The other was in France with the unit he was drafted into, being put on the firing line that could see him maimed or killed. He sent letters, of course, which were received via ship from France to the United States and then rail to Cascadia. Thomas' letters home to them had spoken of what he liked about France and his own difficulties with military life. Including his spoken desire to leave the Army as soon as the war ended. For all of the cheer he tried to convey, his mother still worried intently over him. Admiral Garrett had seen the first gray hairs already appear in Rachel's dark hair. After spending years with little visible aging, she seemed to have gone from looking thirty to looking forty-five in the span of six months.

Not that he wasn't looking spry himself. The stress of the war was getting to him. He felt older and knew that he looked older.

Rear Admiral Simon Holmes, still his senior aide, was showing him papers on the naval budget. "The Army is requesting your support for this year's budget allotments," he said.

"Just as I did last year? It was rather for naught then, wasn't it?" The Admiral waved off the answer he knew was coming. "No. Ignore me, Holmes. I am grousing. Of course I will support the army budget at our expense. It is clear to me that for the moment, the Navy is deadlocked with the enemy. Even a superior budget will not change that in the near-turn. This war may still be won or lost in Europe. Our fighting boys need the edge."

Holmes nodded. "You will be pleased to know, sir, that several ships sent to France are carrying those new armored vehicles. They should be arriving in France any day."

"Hopefully your acquaintance's genius will give us an edge in the upcoming campaign," the Admiral answered.


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Fairbanks was cruising off of the Cape Verde Islands on the afternoon of the 2nd when she made contact with the Russian armored cruiser Ryurik. The Russian vessel was in a bad position to make a successful interception and the Fairbanks escaped.

The Salmon is sunk off Kamchatka by a Russian destroyer.

Anti-war protests were held in several German cities. Even though the German merchant marine had managed several successful voyages to America for grain over the prior month the food prices in Germany remained painfully high. The cry for "peace and bread" resonated across both Germany and Russia.

With this in mind, Germany agreed with a Russian plea to sue for peace. Another peace feeler was sent through London to Ambassador Muniz. German terms were softened this time. For the first time, Germany offered to give up all claim to Samoa.

But the Germans wanted Tsingtao back. And they wanted a new joint non-military zone on the French border. While some Frenchmen thought the zone a good idea, they were overshadowed by those in favor of continuing the war. Georges Clemenceau was becoming a front-runner in the French political scene, urging the continuation of the war until Alsace-Lorraine had been reclaimed. Many wanted to at least reclaim Metz and the French-speaking citizenry of that region of the Moselle valley.

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February 1910

For the first time since the start of the war, full talks were being held. Recognizing that the war still wasn't going their way the Germans and Russians were ready to make concessions.
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But despite their problems, neither were willing to pay the price demanded by the Allied powers. Japan wanted Sakhalin and acceptance of her sphere in Korea and Manchuria. Cascadia insisted on a Russian withdrawal from the Liaotung Peninsula and for Germany to cede Tsingtao and the Marianas to Cascadia. France was insisting on all or some of Alsace-Lorraine, particularly the region around Metz. The government in France could ask for no less without risking being toppled.

This was far too much for the two Emperors. Germany and Russia resolved to fight on, putting their hope in bloodying the Allied offensive in Europe that they knew to be coming soon. The precarious balance for both the French and Cascadian governments was known. A serious setback again was hoped to be enough to topple them and bring in peace governments that would return Tsingtao and leave Japan isolated if it refused the minor concessions Russia was willing to grant.

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In Portland, Representative Flagg responded with an angry tirade in the House, accusing Lakeland of deliberately sabotaging the peace talks with unreasonable demands. He vowed to continue to organize the working class of Cascadia "regardless of what this imperialist government might do to stop us". Many Conservatives demanded he be arrested as a seditious traitor.

Indeed, with the Socialists having mobilized trade union and working class opposition to the war, the Conservatives and Hawk Liberals were now full swing in mobilizing other forces in favor of the war. Anti-Socialist slogans permeated newspaper advertisements and posters. Veterans of the Great North American War and the Spanish War that were still in the homeland formed associations, vowing to resist any attempt to "dishonor our country". Many politicians from the right side of the aisle were beginning to openly accuse Flagg and Graysmith of plotting to betray Cascadia and wanting to overthrow the government., All vowed to support anti-Socialist bands in the event of armed conflict breaking out.

Revolution in Cascadia was not impossible. That it was not yet contemplated save by the most extreme personages was due to the influence of President Matthews. The steadfast Liberal leader remained a vital check on this smoldering cauldron of class tension and political turmoil. As the actual Executive of the nation, he refused all appeals and pleas to employ the War Powers against Flagg's Socialists. He called for calm in the populace, respect for differing viewpoints, and for the nation to not turn against itself as war still raged.

He paid a price for this. Socialists continued to assail him as weak and incompetent. Conservatives and even members of his own party insisted he was spineless and unwilling to employ the methods needed to restore order. Such are the charges that sober leaders can face when their countrymen are caught in the grip of terrible passions. But it is clear that without that sober leadership, the Cascadian nation would not have survived the war intact."
- Excerpt from "The First Pacific War: A General History" by Sophie Garrett, published 1942

The Navy lost another submersible during the month. Meanwhile enemy submersibles sank two more merchant vessels.


Cascadian Army Bivouac
Champagne Region, France
7 February 1910



Thomas hated the Army.

He, in fact, hated the military entirely.

Perhaps it was because he was in it at the bottom. His father had been an officer, after all, and his brother a cadet officer. Here he was an enlisted man, subject to whatever petty whim or demand given to him by whomever had a higher rank. It bristled that he had to listen and obey men who were far dumber than he could have ever imagined someone could be. Men he could think circles around.

But he had held himself. He had obeyed, bristling internally all the way, all of those petty little orders, and his intelligence had brought him to the attention of his company commanders. Recently Lieutenant Richards had told him he was being promoted to Corporal and put in charge of one portion of his platoon. All of them were young drafted men his age, only barely made 20.

Then other papers had come. He was being pulled from his regiment and assigned to a new command. What little personal support he had from schoolmates here was gone.

Now he was in the wet French winter with a white carpet of snow around him, standing with dozens of other Cascadian men and looking at a field covered in shapes under tarps. One offer, with a Major's insignia on him, stood in front of him with a number of other officers. "You men have been picked because you are considered bright young fellows, capable of grasping the new thing before you." The Major gestured to the shapes under the tarps. "These vehicles have been shipped at great expense from the finest factories back home to be our secret weapon when we begin the advance into German territory. We have taken great care in hiding them from the enemy, so I expect you men to keep your mouths shut. As far as the outside world is concerned, these are just tanks. But in truth, there have been nothing like them in the history of warfare. And you, my boys, will be the ones who make history when you take these behemoths into battle. Now, fall in and prepare for assignment!"

Thomas waited patiently until he was called up by the Major. He saluted, as was required. "Corporal Thomas Garrett." Thomas waited to see if the family connection would be recognized. He tried not to speak on it after discovering it made the nastier sergeants far more likely to be even more vicious toward him. "I see you're considered a bright young man. You'll be assigned as an engineer, Corporal."

Thomas gave no response beyond "Yes sir.". Working with machinery and engines was not his idea for the future. But he remembered Grandpa Steve showing him and Raffie some things at the family repair shop in Astoria during visits. He wasn't entirely lost with machinery and engines.

"You'll be assigned to…" The Major checked his paper and checked something with a pen. "Platoon C. Report to Lieutenant Patton."

Thomas went over to where the junior officers of the unit were collecting their men. He found the man he was looking for after a few minutes of searching. Lieutenant Patton looked to be a few years older than he was. His field uniform was well-kept, more so than usual. Thomas knew to feel leery at that - it was a sign that the officer in question was one of those who was very strict about appearance.

"Corporal Garrett reporting, sir", he said, saluting to his new lieutenant.

"At ease, Corporal." The man's voice was high, almost shrill, but he kept it gruff. "Wait a minute… I know that nose. You're that Admiral's son."

Thomas hid his disappointment. If it wasn't sergeants loving to abuse him over it, it was officers expecting him to be a great military officer like his father.

"The Fleet Admiral's son." Patton smirked. "Don't worry about it, Corporal, I know the Vallejo nose anywhere. Your grandparents have been around my family before. The last time I saw you, I was just a boy, and you were barely walking."

"I wasn't aware of that," Thomas admitted.

"Oh, I'd expect not. You had an older brother, didn't you?"

"Yes. Rafael."

"He wasn't drafted too, was he?"

"No. He's at Esquimalt, at the Naval Academy. This is his final year."

"Ah. But you didn't go in. Looking to do something else. Well, you're with the Army now, Corporal, and you'll serve just as well as your brother." Lieutenant Patton nodded at him. "In fact, I want you as the engineer for my tank. If you're half as bright as your parents, you'll be the best damn one in the company."

Thomas wasn't quite sure if he should be happy or not about getting that posting. He decided to default to happy, if just to enjoy the fact that he now had a Lieutenant he could actually relate to. "Honored, sir."

"Fall in now, we'll talk later."

Thomas did so. And as the cold bit at him, he wondered just what these "tanks" were going to be like.



The Allied armies were preparing to march. The lessons of 1909 had been considered, or at least the commanders thought they had been considered. General Parker was committing the new Tractor Regiment, the force using the "tank" armored tractors shipped from Cascadia, to the main axis of the attack toward Metz around Amanvillers.

The Cascadian 1st and 2nd Armies were back to full strength, and were now joined by the 3rd, 4th, and 7th Armies organized under the Cascadian Expeditionary Army Group. Parker commanded the CEAG and the 1.3 million men of the Cascadian Army now serving in France. Most of the men under arms in Cascadia were now in France and he was under enormous pressure from Portland to conserve their lives when possible. But at the same time he needed to ensure he played a major role in the attack. The French were beginning to feel despair after a summer of exchanging communes and stretches of destroyed farmland with Russo-German attackers.

It was hard to determine if the Germans had their own offensive plans. They were suffering from the same social tensions the other combatants were. And the Russian troops were not considered reliable after the experiences of the prior year. Widespread discontent with the war and having to answer to German forces had embittered the Russians and undermined their morale. A number of German commanders privately worried about whether the Russians would be useful in a new offensive, or even able to resist an attack. German divisions that were available were deployed behind the Russian lines as reserves should the Russians need stiffening. That more could not be found for the task was blamed on Berlin, which had scaled back Germany's conscription efforts upon the Russian declaration of war.

As both sides waited for spring to come, tension grew among the troops. There was a feeling that the offensive might be the one that decided the war, namely, by forever breaking one side or the other.


On the last day of the month, the Dauntless and Victoria nearly had a chance to engage Russia's battle fleet at La Pérouse Strait.

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The ships were on their way back to Tsingtao after patrolling for Russian ships up to Kamchatka when the Chinook reported contact with an enemy cruiser west of the strait. Full steam was made to begin an engagement before darkness fell. But contact with the enemy cruiser was lost. With darkness now falling fully, Rear Admiral Owen Litchfield - commander of the Northwest Pacific Fleet - opted against a dangerous and uncertain night-time engagement and chase. The fleet moved east to sail around Hokkaido and continue to the south.



March 1910

Despite the economic problems caused by the war, industrial production in Cascadia continued to soar. This eased the pressure on the working classes with more jobs and aided the national war economy with higher producitvity and increased tax receipts.

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The decision of General Joffre to attack so early was one on which history has forever turned. General Parker had added his voice to numerous French and Cascadian generals urging that the early break in the spring rains had to be taken advantage of. Any delay might bring back inclement weather and would certainly give the Germans more time to launch their own stroke.

The stakes could never be higher. The Cascadian nation had, despite its own needs in the Pacific, committed her best troops to the aid of the French Republic. There were over 1.3 million Cascadians now under the colors in France, an army that if shattered could not be rebuilt easily. The French, for their part, had felt heavily the weight of the hundreds of thousands of dead Frenchmen in the prior year and a half of fighting. The spirit of the French nation needed a success.

Meanwhile Germany still had great manpower reserves to call upon if pressed. The Germans could be expected to invade France over the summer if a blow were not struck here, in the dry days of spring. But first they had to hold despite the questionable capabilities of their Russian allies, whom necessity made responsible for the northern line in Lorraine.

The attack orders were given in these tense circumstances. March 9th, 1910, was to be the start of a campaign on which the Pacific War would be decided, not upon the range of the Pacific, but upon the battlefields of Alsace-Lorraine." -
Excerpt from The First Pacific War: A General History by Sophie Garrett, published 1942





Near Amanvillers
9 March 1910


Thomas could barely think over the roar of the "tank"'s engine. Despite the cool spring temperature outside, it was stuffy and hot inside of the vehicle as it rumbled forth.

The worst part was that even the noise couldn't distract him from the fear he felt.

There was the occasional sharp sound, the sound of bullets smacking against the steel hull of their monster vehicle as it rumbled ahead. It wasn't moving fast - from experience Thomas knew that the beast was lucky to break 3 miles an hour - and the enemy infantry was pouring fire all over it. But its steel armored skin deflected every shot.

Occasionally a shell would explode close enough to be heard over the engine. Thomas didn't know if they could take a direct hit from an artillery shell… and frankly he didn't want to know. He focused entirely on the engine and making sure it was kept oiled and running.

All the while Lieutenant Patton was barking orders to the gunners. The armored vehicle had a couple of guns built into the sides of the metal box and gunners manning them were made to fire them at the enemy trenches ahead.

The tank rumbled and shook as it forced itself up an incline. "Ha! Look at that barbed wire now!", the driver crowed. Thomas could easily imagine the scene; their tank rolling over the barbed wire in question, crushing it and creating a hole for the infantry huddled behind them to go through.

Thomas wondered what it was like. He'd met some veterans of the push last April. They'd talked about the rows of men mowed down by the Germans' machine guns, the men dying trying to get through the barbed wire, the mines that could blow a foot or whole leg off… it sounded hellish and terrible. Even more so than baking in this iron box, in fact.

He considered the enemy's reaction to them. The shouts and screams of enemy troops as thirty-something tons of metal rumbled up to them, the small cannons on the sides firing into their trenches. The infantry coming up behind the cover of the metal monster to get to grips with them.

Men were dying out there. By the hundreds. Thousands. Boys his age, men even older, mowed down by bullets, blown up by mines and shells, stabbed and gutted by bayonets…

The engine rumbled uneasily. It was losing power. Thomas went to work immediately, examining it and finding the problem with the fuel line. He'd worried that the way it was arranged would cause the fuel line to develop a fold where it was pressed in, and it apparently had. The vibrations in the tank had further shifted the line until the fold was restricting fuel flow. He reached in and loosened the line as much as he could, straightening out the fold.

The power to the engine came back immediately. The tank picked up speed and continued on. They had to be in the enemy trenches, Thomas reasoned. Bullets were still smacking against the tank like some madman's bell going off, over and over again.

And then everything went wrong.

The vehicle trembled violently and Thomas was thrown back violently. Heat roared at him and singed his uniform. Cries came from the front of the tank as it lurched to a stop.

Thomas' thoughts were muddled by the force of the blast and the confusion of the moment. He forced himself to think. A shell had hit them. Or maybe an enemy mine had gone off underneath. Either way, the tank was burning in the rear.

"Get out!", Lieutenant Patton yelled at them. "Out now!"

Thomas twisted on the hot floor and looked to the hatch where the tank crew was clambering out. He watched the driver, Benny Jones, go up through it . The gunners were in line too. He went over to join them. One by one each became a pair of legs that vanished up into a sole spot of light in the dark, increasingly-hot interior of the armored tractor.

Because of where he was, Thomas was the last one out. The sounds of battle - guns cracking, men screaming, armored tractors rumbling, shells and mines exploding - were everywhere. Smoke covered the area.

Patton had waited for him to get out. He screamed something that Thomas couldn't quite hear from the roar of the ongoing fighting and gestured toward a nearby trench. He had his revolver in his hand. Thomas felt to his belt and found his own. His hand trembled as he reached for it.

Then there was a crack. Benny Jones' head seemed to explode. Thomas glanced down to see red and gray stains on his suit.

The fear nearly crippled him. He just wanted to dig a hole under him, cover it, and hide. But the rational part of his brain forced him to remember his situation. He was exposed out here. The nearest Russian soldier might at any moment shoot him.

So he followed Patton off the tank and to the trenches. The smell was awful. There were bodies all along the trenches and blood had turned the ground muddy in points.

He wondered if this place was what Hell was like.

He could see men in Cascadian green in the trench. At least it was one that had been captured from the enemy. Once in the trench he would be safer, relatively speaking anyway.

As if to reinforce that point, he watched blood erupt from the back of one of the gunners, Luis Alvarez. One of the enemy machine guns had swept his way and mowed him down. He cried as he went down, screaming for help.

Thomas went to his side. He grunted with effort as he hefted the older man - a Baja ranch hand - up and slung him on his right shoulder. Alvarez struggled to walk as Thomas half-carried and half-dragged him toward the trench. He got to the edge of it and prepared to jump in.

There was a sudden blast that deafened Thomas. Multiple parts of his body reported sharp, stinging pain. His leg, head, hand, arm… Darkness and blood obscured his vision. All he could do was scream as he toppled into the trench with Alvarez beside him.

Thomas could hear Patton's voice demanding a medic. He could hear other men shouting and screaming as the fighting continued.

And he could feel it all slipping away.

He felt fear. He felt anger. He felt frustration.

He thought of his parents and younger sisters, his older brother, and how much he missed them.

And then it was all dark.
”A Radical is a man with both feet planted firmly in the air.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Raesene »

That's... a nasty cliffhanger.

There's either a Victoria Cross analog (Cascadian Cross ?) award ceremony or a visit by two officers to the Garrett home in the next installment - or both :-(

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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

Raesene wrote:That's... a nasty cliffhanger.

There's either a Victoria Cross analog (Cascadian Cross ?) award ceremony or a visit by two officers to the Garrett home in the next installment - or both :-(
Heh. Given Cascadia being a fusion of the American and British systems and attitudes...

I believe I referred to one high award being the Pacific Cross in an earlier post.
”A Radical is a man with both feet planted firmly in the air.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

DONALD J. TRUMP IS A SEDITIOUS TRAITOR AND MUST BE IMPEACHED
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

The Admiralty
Portland, Federal District
13 March 1910


Sunday was supposed to be a day of rest. But there was no such thing in war.

Admiral Garrett had, indeed, insisted that weekends no longer be considered off days. In peacetime only a small staff would have been on rotating duty to ensure someone could answer emergency wires. Now it was fully staffed. Men were given only one day a week off and only when no major operations were scheduled.

Every man save Admiral Garrett, who insisted on spending at least six hours a day in his office.

There was little going on, certainly. At least from the perspective of war-making events. All of the attention was on France and the Spring Offensive. But just because there was no recent naval battle didn't mean there was no work to be done. Promotion boards had to have their findings signed off on. Commissions had to be finalized for Presidential approval. Budgets to the Offices and Departments had to be allocated. There was a lot of discussion and signing and reading to be done for the Chief of Naval Operations, and Admiral Garrett never wanted for work.

Some of the reports crossing his desk were distressing. Socialist agitation in the Navy was growing. The sailors were frustrated by the extended time at sea, the lack of a battle, and any sign of the war ending. He could sympathize, but at the same time he could not condone actual mutiny, and his orders to Litchfield and MacCallister reflected that.

Intelligence reports indicated growing disruptions in Russia. Groups with names like "Menshevik" and "Bolshevik" were meeting and plotting, according to special sources. The Russian populace hated the war and wanted it over. Time would tell if the Tsar broke from Germany in time to save his throne.

And finally there were the contracts. Careful budget consideration had led Admiral Garrett to approve a fourth Constitution-class battleship, the Independence. It would be laid toward the end of April, when the budget allowed. This would provide Cascadia with a solid battle line for the next several years.

There was a knock on his door and it opened a moment later. He looked up and nodded at Yeomen Rodriguez, a pretty young lady from Lower California that had enlisted in the Womens' auxiliary, freeing up men for combat duty. Her skin had the tanned complexion of mixed birth, the mestizos as the Mexicans and others called them, and her dark eyes were similar in tone to Rachel's.

Standing beside her, looking to enter the room, was an Army officer. Major John Trimble was a staff courier who often brought notes from the Army Chiefs of Staff to the Admiralty. He saluted upon entering the room. "At ease," the Admiral replied, saluting as well. "What do you have for me today?"

"General Landers wanted you to see this, sir," Trimble replied soberly. He offered a paper. "Before it's printed in the papers."

WIth a foreboding sense of unease, the Admiral accepted the paper. He wondered what it could be in the moments before he glanced. Had the Army uncovered a radical leftist plot for a revolution?

Or was it…?

He read over the paper.

And for a moment, he stopped breathing.

"There is nothing more…?", he asked with a hoarse voice.

"No sir."

The Admiral looked very old and tired as he almost fell into his chair. The two people attending him couldn't help but notice how white his face had gone. "Thank you," he managed. "My thanks to General Landers for his consideration. You are dismissed, Major."

"Yes sir." Trimble saluted once and departed.

For several seconds the Admiral did not move. When he did, it was to stand again. "Yeoman."

"Sir?"

"I am going home early today," he told her. His voice was still hoarse. "Inform Admiral Cousland, please. I can be reached by courier if it is necessary."

The young woman nodded. She had the decency not to ask what was wrong. "Right away, sir."



Just as the war had broken out, new orders from the Administration had resulted in the services buying a small fleet of Ford automobiles for their high officials, to be driven by servicemen. This was a measure for security's sake.

It relieved the Admiral of the need to endure a talkative cab driver. The Army corporal assigned to the driving service remained silent while taking him across the Willamette and to the family's home.

Josephine had moved on recently. A young man had married her, an engineering student at the National University thus exempted from the draft, and she had found a job at the University to be closer to him. Her replacement was a Chinese immigrant girl named Mei Ling. The sixteen year old girl knew enough English to function with the family and serve to satisfy Rachel's interest in learning yet another language.

She took his coat without asking and informed him that his wife was in the parlor, reading with Gabbie. The Admiral walked through the hall and into the parlor with the message still clasped in his hand.

Rachel looked up as he entered. After a moment Gabbie did as well. "You're home early…" In a moment Gabbie was off her mother's lap, still holding the picture book, and Rachel was standing up. "What's…" A hand went to her mouth to try, and fail, to stifle the gasp that came. "Thomas?"

He swallowed. And nodded.

Tears were forming in her eyes. "Is… is he…"

"Wounded. Badly. They don't know if he will survive."

A wail of anguish was her reply. Rachel went up to him and threw her arms around the Admiral, who did the same with her.

And they wept, together, for the fate of their child.



The Allied attack on March 9th caught the German and Russian commands by surprise. They had not believed the Allies would attack so soon in the spring, when even the brief dry spell might be quickly replaced by rainy weather that would turn the churned battlefields into mud.

What had also taken them by surprise was the new Cascadian armored tractors. Referred to simply as "Army Armored Tractor Mark I" and called "tanks" by the enlisted men for the cover names assigned to the machines, the vehicle was widely deployed in the dozens at Amanvillers and other key points in the Lorraine section of the front. The French perfected their own techniques based upon studies done by Colonel Henri Petain, employing forward advance parties to slip into no man's land and cut wires under cover of darkness, and to attack the German trenches with storm tactics before dawn to signal the main advance.

The Germans were more prepared for the latter, as they were exploring similar tactics, but nothing prepared the Russo-German forces in Lorraine for Cascadia's new weapon.

It was nevertheless a day of hard fighting in the plains west of Metz, as the Germans and Russians fought hard to repel the Franco-Cascadian attack. Further to the north, Russian units joined their brothers serving in the Far East by facing the Japanese Expeditionary Army, now enlarged to two armies with five Corps overall.

Allied casualties varied from moderate to heavy in various zones, but the tanks proved decisive. The Russo-German lines at Amanvillers were breached in multiple places by the tanks. Although many would succumb to mines, lucky artillery fire, or mechanical failure before the day was over, the breach in the line allowed the Cascadian 4th Army, spearheaded by the 8th Guards Regiment, to break into the Russo-German rear. The town fell by the end of the day's fighting.

Through the next several days, repaired tanks and fresh ones brought up to the front allowed the Allies to keep the enemy from recovering their poise. A Russian counter-attack against the 4th Army's northern flank was met and crushed by the 1st Army - and again the 2nd Cascadian Guards Regiment earned their nickname of "The Iron Wall" - that had been slipped through the breach behind the 4th Army.

The collapse of the Russian counter-attack presaged the ultimate disaster. By the 13th of March, Field Marshal von Moltke - von Schilieffen's replacement as German Army Chief of Staff - was receiving the first reports of total Russian collapse. The Russian troops, frightened by the difficulty in knocking out Cascadian tanks (indeed many refused to believe they could be defeated) and angry at fighting a war they perceived to be for Germany's gain, were melting away from the front. The Japanese maintained steady, if sometimes bloody, progress across the border with Luxembourg, and the Cascadian 2nd Army was now making headway into the gap between the Japanese and the Cascadian 1st Army. German reserves had checked the Cascadian 4th Army east-southeast of Amanvillers, but now the 1st Army's movement meant the German forces were being flanked.

Von Moltke had no choice - to save his troops still holding back the Cascadian 3rd and 7th Armies and the French 10th and 11th, he ordered a retreat and a rushing of reserves north. But the reserves had to come from within Germany - he didn't dare pull units from Alsace where, while holding the French with heavy losses, the Germans were nevertheless fully engaged. Bringing troops out from Alsace could permit French breakthroughs there as well. As it was, he was doing everything he could to keep the enemy from Metz.

For much of the month, it looked like he would succeed. The dry weather broke on the 15th and rain poured for the next three days. The Cascadian tanks sank into the mud the fighting had churned up and the Allied offensive ground to a halt. More reserves were brought up and the Russian armies had time to recover.

But the Russians needed more than three days to recover from the shock to their morale. And the tenacious insistence of General Simon D. Hartfield, commander of the Cascadian 2nd Army, meant that said army continued to launch attacks on the Russian forces ahead of them, pushing them inch by bloody, mud-spattered inch. "Heartless" Hartfield would be hated in Cascadia and among his men for his bloody single-mindedness, but his exhausted army and their losses nevertheless served a key purpose in keeping the Russians from recovering. Several Russian officers turned to shooting shirkers and deserters to staunch the flow of broken men from the front.

Then the wet weather broke again. Sunny skies prevailed. After a day of dry conditions the mud dried enough that the Allied armies resumed their advance. The collapse of the Russian armies forced von Moltke to race troops north to protect the Saar and other targets. But with the French pressing him hard in Alsace and the Franco-Cascadian advance in Lorrraine gaining steady mileage, he simply didn't have the troops to hold everything. Not until the German army had more divisions available.

In Berlin there was consternation at the situation, not to mention the anger at Russia for the failure of the Russian armies. Germany had reduced callups to their own Army to prevent worsening the social unrest that she, like all the other participants in the war, was suffering. But now she lacked the manpower to quickly make up for the Russian failure.

In their desperation, the Germans decided to unveil their own secret weapon early. Authorization was given to the German artillery on the front to start firing special munitions.

The first gas attacks caught the Allies by surprise. Gas had been contemplated as a possibility. But for the moment it seemed neither side was willing to employ the terrible weapon.

Now mustard gas was falling in large quantities on Franco-Cascadian troops marching toward Metz. The Allies rushed to find a suitable gas mask model and put it into quantities for the troops.

In the short-term, the attack stood a great chance of utterly stopping the Allied advance. In fact, it should have.

If not for the wind.

As the first day of shelling finished, the wind shifted. It began to blow steadily from the northwest. That is, it was roughly on the backs of the Allies and toward the Germans. Confused orders to stop firing reached those guns as the gas clouds continued to descend upon German troops who were not yet as protected.

Even the German troops panicked as their own weapon went to work against them. They had no adequate defense against the gas. Many broke and fled.

Mile by mile the fighting continued. The newspaper reports traveled around the world by wire. The Times called it "The bloodiest spring in world history". The Washington Post was so horrified by the reports coming in from their correspondents that they practiced self-censorship for fear of public outrage over the most gruesome of the examples. The International Red Cross readied plentiful supplies to aid refugees from the fighting and to succor troops from both sides.

WIth both sides having suffered casualties reaching the 100,000 mark per involved nation - save Japan, which currently had 63,000 casualties in Europe - the voices crying for the fighting to end intensified. In the end, the great moment came on the 30th of March when, after three weeks of intense campaigning and battle, elements of the Cascadian 4th Army arrived at the city of Metz.

Metz was the center of the part of Lorraine that had been severed from France in 1871. It was the heart of the French-majority region of Elsass-Lothringen, the German territory carved out from their winnings in the Franco-Prussian War. It had an old fortress and sat on the Moselle River, the heart of the territory here.

German troops did occupy the old fortress and briefly use it against Allied troops. The German commander soon realized his situation and decided that preserving his men was more important than a last minute, last night stand. He slipped his troops out that night.

The result was reported on April 1st with great exultation by the pro-Administration Oregonian.
ARMY TAKES METZ

Cascadian, French soldiers liberate Lorraine capital from German forces!


Citizens lined the streets of the French city of Metz as Cascadian and French troops marched by. The soldiers, weary as they were, kept their heads high on the march. Officers moved into the city hall and lowered the German Empire's flag, raising the French tricolor to once more signal to the people that they were one with their homeland. General Joffre, in a mark of respect, permitted Cascadian troops the honor of first occupying the old fortress at Metz, and above the fortress the Cascadian tricolor joined the French tricolor to mark the crowning success of this long month of March, 1910.

Officials in the War Office reported elation in the Government upon receipt of General Parker's wire on the liberation of Metz. "This day will be remembered in the history of our nation," insisted Senator Jake Roberts, the Populist War Secretary. "The Cascadian Army has proven itself worthy to march with the greatest armies of Europe."

The defeatist Socialists have yet to respond to this latest setback to their….
"
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Even before the fall of Metz, the ongoing fighting and the hardships facing the nation sparked demonstrations across Germany in favor of suing for peace. The SDP argued in the Reichstag that with the Marianas revolt broken, the need for war had ended and Germany stood only to lose if they kept up the war. "Should we lose parts of the Fatherland over a port in China?", one deputy of the SDP asked rhetorically, referencing the German government's refusal to accept a peace that did not include Cascadia returning Kiautschou Bay to the German Empire.
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Naval engineers working with the Submersibles Department of the Design Office reported they had developed improved diving gear for new Cascadian submersibles.

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A German submersible sank a Cascadian transport ship near Le Havre.

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The Japanese successfully seized a bridgehead over the Yalu River, inflicting thousands of casualties on Russia's Far Eastern armies.

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The Nez Perce led a force near Liaotung Peninsula to find any Russian ships still operating out of Port Arthur. After hours with no visual contact, the Cascadian forces withdrew.
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The bloody battlefield successes in France nevertheless took their toll back home. The Socialist Party held several more anti-war rallies. This time there was a further air of menace. Representative Charleton of Seattle went even further than Flagg, declaring that if the government continued to wage a war against the wishes of the people, "the people have a right to wage a war on the government". This not-so-veiled call for the anti-war movement to become revolutionary was both indicative of Charleton's growing adhesion to the Trotskyist-Leninist school of Socialist thought (that is, revolutionary Communism) and the frustration in the urban industrial cities at the Government's inability to restore peace. While the Cascadian merchant marine was still very intact despite some steady losses, insurance rates were hiking the prices of shipped goods and thus the prices in stores for imported goods and produce. Rising food prices and large casualty lists were turning the urban population against the war and against the government.

This time Attorney-General Caldwell had his way. Charleton had stepped beyond anti-war sentiment to revolutionary conflict inside the nation. Citing the National Protection clauses of the various enabled War Powers decrees, Caldwell had the National Marshals arrest the raging Congressman.

The arrest put Flagg in a tight spot. If he protested it, enemies would be able to accuse him of supporting Charleton's aggressive posture. If he said nothing, not only was he abandoning a party member to arrest, he was threatening a schism in the party just as popular fury made his intention to overturn the Government a reality. Ultimately, he protested the arrest on procedural grounds while distancing himself from Charleton's calls for violence.

The unrest was even spreading into the Navy. A Conservative officer in Admiral Litchfield's command, Commander Davison, reported to the Admiralty that Socialists drafted into the fleet had begun distributing anti-war leaflets even on the foreign stations and that some of the sailors were growing discontent with the war. The order came back from Admiral Garrett to maintain watches for mutinies but to not crack down immediately, lest it spark even wider mutinies from the sailors.

Unrest at 8



Joint Allied Army Hospital
Verdun, France
26 March 1910



Thomas opened his eyes.

Something immediately felt wrong. Something was off. His throat was parched dry. The light was too bright. And his stomach ached with how empty it was.

He gently moved his head and could see the beds to one side, and then to the other. A small table was beside him with medical instruments and such on it. The men in the other beds were in various states. Awake, asleep, sobbing in pain, staring into space…

The muscles in his body protested when he tried to sit up. He could hear feet clattering on the ground. "No, no," a woman's voice cried. "You musn't!"

A woman in white walked swiftly to his side. A nurse, in starch white, with dark hair done up in a bun and bright blue eyes that Thomas thought he could get lost in. He tried and failed to think of the last time he had seen such a gorgeous girl.

Her face betrayed concern as she put a hand on him. "You are still weak," she insisted. Her French accent was fairly thick "You are so very fortunate to be here with us, you mustn't push yourself."

Thomas blinked. And it felt weird. Like something was wrong. He reached up with his left hand and pressed it against his left eye. He felt only cloth.

But the feeling was also wrong. His fingers. Why couldn't he…?

His left hand moved into his vision. Thomas gasped in horror.

His hand was wrapped in a bandage as well. And two of his fingers were gone.

"Yes. Yes, you… please calm down…"

"My hand," Thomas whimpered. "What happened to…?"

"You lost two fingers and some of the hand below," she informed him gently. "And your left eye. The doctors were able to save your left leg."

Thomas heard her say that. It registered. But still… his hand and his eye. He'd lost an eye?!

"Calm yourself. Your wounds still need time to heal," the nurse insisted. She took his right hand and left hand and held them in hers.

For several more moments Thomas continued to heave. He was incredulous. Panicked. And he could feel the weakness inside of him, hunger and thirst warring for attention, muscles unwilling to move just yet…

He had to gain control. He had to focus his mind. He had to grab on to something…

The thought went to his lips without his mind quite having time to catch himself.

"You are the most beautiful woman I've ever seen," he said.

The nurse blushed faintly and smiled at him. Thomas blinked and blushed as well. "I… I'm sorry, I…"

"It is quite alright," she laughed. Her accent gave her words an alluring, exotic tone. "I understand. Now that you are awake, I must inform the surgeons. Is there anything you need first?"

"Food and something to drink," Thomas replied immediately, his physical needs demanding the attention. After a moment he considered things. "And… if you can get me a pen and some paper and maybe an envelope…"

"A letter home, oui? Yes?" The nurse smiled sweetly. "Of course, Let me go to the kitchens and get you some soup and water. And I shall see about the rest."

Thomas nodded. She turned away. Before she took a couple of steps he remembered a detail that had nagged him. "Wait… what's your name?"

She looked back to him. A smile crossed her face. "Anne-Marie Leveaux," she said. "You are Thomas Garrett, I believe?"

The way she said his name reminded him of the way his Pappi - his grandfather Vallejo - pronounced it. "Yes," he said. "That's me."

She nodded and continued on. And Thomas was left to his thoughts.


April 1910


After the fall of Metz the Allied offensive continued on. But the energies of the French, Cascadian, and Japanese armies had ebbed after a month of savage combat. The Cascadian 2nd and 4th Armies were more than decimated by the losses they had endured, with 2nd Army having entire regiments depleted to the size of companies by combat casualties. General Parker reported to General Joffre that his troops could not sustain their forward movement. If they did not relent now and dig in, a German counterattack could easily reclaim Metz.

The French command bristled at this, believing a German collapse imminent that would carry them all the way to Strassburg and the Rhine. This was an alarming display of some of the disconnect between the French staff command and their field armies. The French had suffered the highest casualties of the spring fighting and their armies were just as exhausted. Gains in Alsace were measured in yards, and the Germans now had the Moselle River for further natural defense in Lorraine.

But Joffre was under pressure. Georges Clemenceau was leading a charge to replace the current government with one even more hawkish, and Joffre's civilian superiors were desperate for another victory to stave him off for fear that a hawkish government might yet provoke further social unrest. The proposal was made to move fresh French troops, in the 14th and 16th Armies, and to push north of the city toward the Saar. This would put them against the demoralized Russian forces that were deserting to the Allies steadily, reporting terrible conditions and near-mutiny in the ranks. A reluctant General Parker agreed to commit two brigades of the 1st Army to supporting the French assault scheduled toward the end of the month.


The new scout cruiser Sacramento was commissioned.

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Further examination of captured German shells from Tsingtao proved of assistance to Naval Ordnance in improving AP shell design.
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Metallurgy experts provided the Navy with superior methods in ensuring quality in the forging of naval armor.

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The German cruiser Amazone was interned after exhausting her coal bunkers.

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The situation in Russia was deceptively quiet for much of the month. Armed soldiers were employed to keep the peace in St. Petersburg, Moscow, and other major Russian cities. The Tsar's Government issued public statements urging the public to keep their faith in the war effort. Pro-government publications gleefully reported news of the "Socialist rabble uprisings" supposedly crippling the Cascadian and French countrysides while news of their own army's problems in Alsace-Lorraine and the Far East were carefully censored. As the month went on without word of major problems, the Russian government felt confidence rising again, not realizing just what the quiet portended.

Meanwhile the French prepared to launch their offensive on May 3rd, looking to punch the Russian lines open.

But unknown to them, or to the Russian deserters that survived no man's land to surrender, von Moltke had assigned two fresh German armies a couple of miles to the rear of the Russian lines. While his commanders urged him to attack through the Russians, the German commander-in-chief instead prepared plans for a counter-attack to fall upon the Cascadian 2nd Army one the French advance had exhausted itself. Once that casualty-ridden, beleaguered formation had cracked and collapsed, the Germans would be able to outflank the extended, weakened French forces and maneuver into northern Lorraine. If they could threaten the road link to Metz, Germany might force the Allies to retreat and reclaim what had been lost.


The Hochseeflotte steamed out to meet the Marine Nationale in a battle near Texel off the Dutch coast. During the battle the French destroyer Francisque was sunk by German shellfire. The exchange went in France's favor, however, with the torpedoing and sinking of the battleship Zähringen.
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Meanwhile, in the Pacific, the Cascadian Navy was getting the day it had been waiting for. On April 26th Admiral MacCallister, flying his flag from the Sovereign, was leading a significant force in escort of a transport convoy to the Philippines when the Germans offered battle with a battle squadron due south of Guam and west of Truk.
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CRS Sovereign
Caroline Islands
26 April 1910



Captain Reginald Etps looked through his binoculars at the lines of slow-moving merchantmen and transports beside his ship. The Sovereign was steaming along to the west at a leisurely 10 knots with much of the East Asian Fleet. Superb steamed on behind her. Four of the Kirk-class destroyers were alongside them as screens while the protected cruiser Olympia and the Sherman-class destroyer Abraham Lincoln were further to stern. And further back, in a vanguard scouting position, was Etps' old command Reliant and the ship he had fought the Spanish aboard 12 years ago, the Defiant. Joshua Giddings and Harriet Stowe were accompanying those cruisers as screens.

His XO, Commander Walter Pileggi, was looking out at the sea with his own set. "Do you think the Germans will intercept this time?"

"I suspect they are as impatient as we are, Commander," Etps replied. To think that he was at war with Germany again. There were nights he still remembered the 30th of July, 1903. The tension, the excitement, that feeling in his stomach when Commander Parker's position was hit by shell shrapnel, or when that German torpedo had hit the Anchorage.

Now here he was, in the most coveted command of the Cascadian Navy, and that kind of tension was seeping into him again.

It was made worse by the growing discontent in the crew. For over a year the Sovereign had been moored at Chuuk, in position to intercept German ships from either the Bismarcks or the Marianas, holding the vital Pacific anchorage and its connection to the Philippines. There was little to do in the islands of the lagoon and his men had grown frustration with the lack of opportunities on leave. The Navy was abuzz with the talk of Socialist agitators having been drafted into the crews, and that they were using this to spread dissent and anti-war sentiments. Some even insisted they intended to mutiny and seize the ships.

Etps thought that was far-fetched. But he was aware of the discontent. And it was starting to worry them. Perhaps a battle with the Germans would

"Sir!" A voice came over the tube coming down from the mast. "Signal from Superb, sir! Enemy spotted to the northwest!"

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Etps exchanged a look with Pileggi. "XO, inform Admiral MacCallister. All hands to general quarters! Action stations!"

The deck officer sounded the ship-wide alarm. Across the vessel the crew of over a thousand rushed to their action stations.

"Helm, make bearing two-eight-five, ahead to flank speed," Etps ordered.

"Aye sir, helm bearing two-eight-five. Signaling engineering for flank speed."

The Superb's signal had gotten through to the other ships by this point. All began to maneuver to engage the unseen enemy. Etps moved his binoculars in that direction until he spotted the coal-smoke far on the horizon. Multiple enemy ships… and what he suspected were at least three enemy battleships.

Admiral MacCallister made his way on the bridge, to the whistle of a waiting bosun. All, including Etps, stood at attention and saluted. "At ease, gentlemen," MacCallister answered. He took up his own binoculars and looked out the window at the distance. "Looks like the Germans are finally ready for a fight. I'm guessin' they thought we wouldn't assign the battle line to escort this convoy."

"I've taken the liberty of putting us on an intercept course, sir," Etps said.

"Good. Good show with that, Captain. Make ready for the engagement. Signal the Defiant, I want the cruisers on our south should the enemy have faster ships coming up. Let's see what the Germans have sent us..."

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The German battleships in question were the Hannover, Lothringen, and Preussen. When the commanding admiral of the German division spotted Sovereign and Superb, he realized the extent of his miscalculation. He ordered his fleet to break off to the north.

But the German ships could only make 19 knots, at best. The superior speed of the big Cascadian ships allowed them to close the distance and begin firing on the Germans.

The main advantage for the Germans was Admiral MacCallister's fear of their torpedoes. He kept the ships at long range, over 15,000 yards, to avoid getting the pride of the Cascadian fleet torpedoed this far out from Chuuk. The long range, however, meant that accuracy suffered.


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CRS Superb


Captain Wallace felt like grounding his teeth. Almost two hours of firing, but at this ranges his gunnery officers had their work cut out for them. He glanced at Pentworth and mumbled, "We should get closer. Draw within 10,000 yards, at least."

"I agree, sir. But the formation is not doing so."

"Curse the man. This is the day we have been waiting for. Three damn German battleships, but we outgun them two to one." He looked nervously at the time. It was spring, so the days were getting longer, but they would end up in darkness within a few ours.

He put his binoculars up to his face again. To the west the German battleships continued to steam for safety. The Germans were firing for all they were worth, knowing their one hope was to cripple their faster pursuers.

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And then there was a blast in the distance. Wallace saw his ship's target take the direct hit and smiled to himself. "Well done." Now if they could only land more hits to finish these Germans off…



As night drew closer, Admiral MacCallister finally gave the order. The battleships began to turn more northwesterly, reducing the range to the German line. For the short term it was a slight disadvantage. The turn of the German ships meant that the angle to close the distance required bringing the Y turret out of arc, reducing the guns firing on the Germans by two per ship.

One German ship, with engine trouble, fell out of the line partially. It was set on by the armored cruisers that were following the battle line, ready to cut off enemy attempts to turn south. In the exchange of fire the Reliant lost a turret.

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Meanwhile the Cascadian warships drew closer. The secondary batteries on the two ships began to engage as well. Shellfire inflicted damage on each side, but the Germans had the disadvantage that the Cascadian ships' armor was capable of repelling their shots, but the larger Cascadian guns were more effective against their own older armor schemes.

The German battleship Hannover took repeated hits in her exchanges with the Sovereign that progressively wrecked her.

The superior speed of the Cascadian ships soon brouught them north of the Germans. MacCallister ordered a turn to port. The Germans had to match to avoid getting their T crossed.

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And then Lothringen got lucky.



CRS Sovereign


Etps was watching the fight when he noticed a familiar disturbance in the water. "Hard to port!", he shouted. "Torpedo!"

The Sovereign made a partial turn to evade the torpedo hit.

But it was too late.

For the second time in his career, Etps felt his ship shudder from a torpedo hitting it below the waterline.

But this was different. The Anchorage had been an old protected cruiser, and just one torpedo hit had threatened to sink her. The lessons learned from that had gone into the design of the Sovereign and other ships to come since. The torpedo did not do nearly as much damage. Enough to cause some flooding, but not so bad as to force him to drop all speed or break off.

The 13" guns on the Sovereign thundered again as the battle drew on. WIthin ten minutes, he had Lieutenant Paul Lockley on the bridge. The ship's senior Damage Control Officer was shaking his head. "We've tried to lock down the flooding, but the ship's speed is costing us work and time. We've got to slow!"

Admiral MacCallister overheard the remark while examining the battle. He sighed and nodded. "Signal to Superb that we are slowing to halt flooding. Hopefully we will not lose the Germans for this."


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Over the course of the next hour, MacCallister's hopes were dashed. The need to slow Sovereign and the onset of night allowed the Lothringen and Preussen to flee north, albeit with varying levels of damage.

Hannover, however, was too wounded to keep up. Even as night fell the two battleships began to pound away at her until she stopped. An hour and a half after taking the torpedo, Sovereign even returned the favor with her own.

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Under fire, torpedoed, the Hannover was already sinking, but it was not immediately evident to the Cascadian ships, who continued to fire upon her. When another form came out of the darkness and was identified as a German ship, the Sovereign fired guns into her until she was a burning wreck.

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Soon it was clear Hannover was slipping beneath the waves. Survivors were picked up as possible and the entire force broke off to meet up again with the transports.

During the trip back, one of Sovereign's bulkheads ruptured, flooding another compartment. The ship and fleet had to slow to eight knots for ten minutes until damage teams had dealt with the situation. They rejoined the transport convoy some time later.

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The battle was the one time that Cascadian and German battleships faced each other in the war. It was not a stellar day for either side. The Germans walked away with the greater loss, losing Hannover and a G12 destroyer. But the engagement was hardly the unqualified succcess that the Cascadian Navy had hoped for. MacCallister's belated decision to close the range cost the fleet critical time in putting crippling damage into all of the enemy ships. The failure to reduce the German fleet significantly ruined Cascadia's last chance to make any attacks to seize the Bismarcks or Marianas.


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The month of April was a bad month for Russo-German raiding cruisers. They were repeatedly foiled in multiple areas of the globe.

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Admiral Garrett orders the laying of the final Constitution-class battleship, the Independence.

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May 1910



The French follow-up offensive, ill-considered as it was, launched on time. The French armies, supported to one flank by elements of the Cascadian 1st Army and on the other by the Japanese 6th Army, struck the Russian forces between Metz and the Luxembourg border. As expected, the Russian morale was so low that they broke and fled. By the end of the second day the Russian trenches were in French hands.

French aeroplane scouts had spotted the German lines by this point. But the French command was certain the German troops were massed elsewhere due to careful movements by the German command. When they charged at what they assumed to be the Russian reserves, the Germans opened up on them. The result was another gruesome slaughter as the French and Allied forces were mowed down. The Cascadian and Japanese forces fared little better. The 2nd Guards Regiment, which had won acclaim for its defensive stands, suffered terrible losses when ordered to lead an attack through no man's land, such that the crack regiment was pulled from the line with just six hundred combat effective men left.

Through May 10th the French command ordered repeated assaults, but whatever gains they managed the Germans would reclaim with quick, vicious counter-attacks. Finally Joffre, forced to recognize what was going on, ordered a halt to the attacks. Another hundred thousand men were casualties. The Cascadians and Japanese forces had suffered proportionately as well. Cascadian combat casualties over the prior two months had surpassed two hundred thousand.

But the planned German counter-stroke never materialized. The Germans needed their troops for other duties, as it turned out.

Because on May 11th, the Russian Imperial train had rumbled across the Baltic border into East Prussia.

Tsar Nicholas II had been overthrown.


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On May 1st the end began. After over a month of quiet the great industrial cities of Russia exploded in a wave of discontent and dissent. Workers across the country declared a General Strike. Dissident lawyer Aleksandr Kerensky addressed a workers' gathering on the morning of the 1st, declaring that the country needed "Peace, land, and bread!" to rapturous cheers. Not to be outdone, Bolshevik leader Vladimir Lenin had been smuggled into the country via Norway and Finland by French agents, and he declared the need for revolution to the assembled masses.

The time would come when the two men struggled for the soul of Russia. For now, they worked together in fomenting the General Strike and organizing to protect working class districts from government reprisal. Government police forces and the armed troops still in the city did move in, but workers armed by the various leftist parties drove them off. By the end of May 1st, the Russian government felt compelled to call in more troops.

On May 2nd the situation continued to be chaotic. The first troops that arrived were deemed insufficient to restore control over the capital. Word arrived that troops stationed in the interior were struggling to make their way over sabotaged railways, with rail workers openly trying to turn the soldiers against the government. Fighting broke out at several locales between armed leftist radicals and the troops.

Finally on May 4th, after three days of chaos, the Russian military arrived in sufficient force to retake St. Petersburg. The crowds of workers were ordered dispelled and were fired upon when they failed. Fighting broke out in several quarters before the radical leaders urged their followers to hide away and preserve themselves for another day. They had, perhaps, planned to let the occupation of the city fester for a few weeks before proceeding. Meanwhile factory managers were given lists of arrested workers to fire and granted detachments of soldiers to provide an armed watch over their sullen workforces.

However, on May 6th, another demonstration gathered. This one, in contrast to the worker marches, was peaceful. It was made up disproportionately of women, children, and the elderly. Many carried photographs of the Tsar and his family and religious iconography, praying to the father of their country to ease their suffering. The rise in food prices and the inflation were crushing them.

Despite the clear nature of the protest, Russian military commanders were skittish. The demonstrators were ordered to disperse. When they failed to do so immediately, some of the troops opened fire. Screams and cries went up among the unarmed demonstrators, who fled in a panic.

More troops arrived, with orders to pin the demonstrators in and fire until they surrendered. But upon seeing the crowds and the dead innocents, the soldiers became enraged with their commanders. All of their anger and feelings about the war, their discontent, simply boiled over. Instead of taking the demonstrators, they started shooting their own officers and the troops that had fired on the unarmed civilians.

The soldier mutiny quickly spread. When word of what had happened came to Kronstadt, the Russian fleet was crippled by mutinies. Other soldiers rushed to join the rebellion that had now erupted in the army. Officers either joined out of self-defense or were shot pre-emptively by their troops, with some managing to escape.

Kerensky and Lenin, among the other leaders, brought their followers back out into the street. The Russian government was utterly paralyzed by the sudden union of soldiers and workers in revolt.

The news went out over wires that night. On May 7th, the isolated government, hiding in the palace, were informed that other troops called in were not coming. The massacre had prompted an open army revolt. Army soldiers and industrial workers across the country were joining to overthrow the Tsarist government.

Seeing the inevitable, Sergei Witte, as the Tsar's current chief minister, sent out a note on the 9th asking for what terms the rebels had. What did they want the government to do? The reply was immediate: Make peace. End the war. And for the Tsar, Lenin wanted him arrested, Kerensky wanted to make him a constitutional monarch with severely limited powers, and the two and other leaders compromised on exile. Lenin secretly gave orders for Bolsheviks in the railways to sabotage their car and kill them, however. That this did not happen is believed to be from the order failing to percolate through in time before the Romanovs left.

On May 10th, many gathered at Tsarskoe Selo to watch as the Romanov family departed by unmarked carriage. They made their way to their train where, under protection from loyal personal guards, they fled to exile in Germany.



The news of the collapse of the Russian government changed the entire dynamic on the Western Front. Von Moltke could no longer afford an offensive, not when he had to get the Russian troops out of the country before their revolutionary fervor polluted his own. To the chagrin of Berlin, the Army took the step of using every available train to get the Russian army out while new German units took their place in the line. The operation was completed with superb skill and speed by the German military, but it still took weeks to manage the replacement of Russians with new German units.

The French had literally attacked too early. Had they waited, as Joffre and others requested, the offensive might have come down during the transition and broken the German lines utterly. As it was, the Allied troops were too bloodied and tired to take advantage of the situation. A sort of partial truce fell over the Western Front, punctuated by night-time raids across no man's land and the occasional shelling. For the moment, neither side wanted to attack.



Meanwhile the new Russian Soviets met to assemble a government. It would be broadly Socialist in makeup, with land redistribution and worker control and ownership of factories. Military commands would be overseen by officers elected by the soldiers and sailors.

But just as important as setting up their new government was getting peace made with the Allies. Both leaders hoped that the Allies would be generous in victory. They were willing to abandon Russian pretensions to Manchuria, but anything else would be too much. But Lakeland and his Japanese counterparts had other ideas.

The Allies knew of what was going on through the British and American diplomatic corps and other reports. Lakeland was quick to seize advantage. As government control and army power collapsed across Russia and the Russian fleets were seized by their sailors and returned to port, the Cascadian Navy went into operation. A force of two brigades that had been training in southern Alaska were put on boats and, under escort, carried to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatksiy. The collapse of central authority meant there was no opposition to their landing around the city and taking it. By May 25th, Cascadia had taken possession of all the settlements in the Kamchatka Peninsula. Further landings in Chukotka were planned for June.

On May 19th, Japanese troops landed on Sakhalin. They would have complete control of the island before the month was out.

The situation in Manchuria was trickier. The Russian officials in Port Arthur, hearing of what happened, had apparently decided they would rather have a "European" power take control of the port. They wired the Russian minister to the Chinese government, who in agreement informed the Cascadian minister in Peking that if Cascadian troops were shipped to the Liaotung Peninsula, the Russian forces would not fire on them and would surrender immediately in return for repatriation. The exuberant minister agreed and wired General Brewer. Before the day was out, a regiment of Cascadian troops, the 2nd Klamath, were aboard steamers making for the peninsula under the protection of the Chinook and other ships. They arrived on May 16th and took formal possession.

Japanese troops, meanwhile, continued to march behind the retreating Russians. Harbin and Mukden would soon fall to their advance. There was severe aggravation in parts of Tokyo at the Cascadian taking of Liaotung. Japanese leaders resolved to only accept this if Cascadia agreed to Japanese annexation of all of Korea.

When Kerensky's peace offer finally made it to Paris on May 28th, the Cascadian and Japanese representatives replied with conditions: the acceptance of the new government to their territorial dispositions. Cascadia would take over Kamchatka in its entirety and draw a line through the Russian Far East based on the Kolyma and Omolon Rivers, then south of the origin of the Omolon to the Sea of Okhotsk; everything to the east of this line would be placed under Cascadian control. The Russian title to the concession in the Liaotung Peninsula would go to Cascadia. Japan would get Sakhalin and Russian acceptance of the annexation of North Korea. France required a pledge that the new government would sever the alliance with Germany and remain neutral in all further Franco-German conflicts.

Kerensky balked at the scale of the costs. He feared that it might inspire the Army to revolt. But Lenin outmaneuvered him in the Soviets and pushed acceptance. He calculated that with Germany continuing the war, the Cascadians and French would succumb to revolution as well and that any territorial concessions would be undone. Even if this did not happen, the new government had to make peace and accept the sacrifice.

On June 10th, the Russian Soviet signaled to the Allies their acceptance of the term. The new representative of the Russian Soviets signed the agreement with Allied representatives in Paris on June 19th. The Treaty of Sevres, as it would be called, ended Russian participation in the war.




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However, a month before then, the German Empire had already made its decision. Germany would still fight on, alone, against her three enemies.

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Also, here's the post-war Russian government now:

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Author-Player's Note: I will admit that I edited the save file over Northern Korea. The game starts with Northern Korea as a "Neutral" possession, as in not occupied by any of the powers. This, of course, is done to reflect that before the Russo-Japanese War, that region was disputed between Japan and Korea. And historically it went to Japan upon its victory in said war.

Which this war, in part, is this timeline's equivalent of.

But of course this game doesn't reflect that historical reality in the system. Neutral possessions are only taken over by various kinds of events. Ergo I have altered the map data save file (which says where things are in each zone, who rules them, and if anyone has invaded) to make Japan the controller of Northern Korea.

On another note, having the Allied armies take Metz based on my interpretation of the 1500VP "multiple breakthrough" event came mostly from the later Russian Revolution event. These two things gave me the logic of the Russian Army's collapse, and with it the Germans being forced to retreat or be outflanked. I apologize if I interpreted the event wrongly. I'm trying to make things interesting and justify what has happened in the game.
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"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

...okay, that first paragraph of the author's note was supposed to reflect Northern Korea's status as being "between Japan and Russia". My bad.

As for awards, I've done some research and talked to a Marine friend for his opinions. For one thing, at this time in history the US had just one official commendation of note: the Medal of Honor. Virtually every commendation we know in the US was created in the period from WWI to WWII. Though the Purple Heart claims official descent from a commendation Washington ordered to exist for the Continental Army.

My current thinking is mostly a US-style system, but with the Cross as the main emblem/item. Bronze Cross, Order of Merit, Civic Cross/Order of the Legion, Silver Cross, Cross of Victory (for flag-rank officers primarily), Cascadian Cross/Pacific Cross (Army/Navy), Medal of Valor, and Medal of Honor.

Discussing things with my Marine friend, I proposed the Civic Cross while thinking of the corona civica - the Civic Crown - that the Romans awarded for saving the life of a fellow citizen (although a quick check appears to indicate the award required an enemy be slain in the act of rescue). He thought the title sounded too "civilian", that it'd be the kind of award given a civilian. Since I have previously hinted Cascadia did have a national service of some sort (given the continental border needing defending, I suspect it at least keeps an active draft) I proposed that the award was thus made specifically for "citizen-soldiers" who were not Regulars, peacetime enlistees, but simple draftees. This led to a discussion that by WWI the distinction between professional enlistee and draftee/conscript was breaking down, and the Order of the Legion was proposed (or rather, re-titled from me from the proposal Fratres Legionis, an attempt at "Brotherhood of the Legion" but my Latin is rusty... or rather fairly non-existent) as the proper service counterpart. I liked an idea muted that this war will have that stated breakdown of distinction between peacetime regular professional and draftee, and that Thomas will be given the Order rather than the Civic Cross as part of that shift of mindset.

But none of this, save the title "Pacific Cross" for a high-level commendation, is in stone yet, so feel free to discuss things. Or call me an idiot, I suppose.
”A Radical is a man with both feet planted firmly in the air.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

DONALD J. TRUMP IS A SEDITIOUS TRAITOR AND MUST BE IMPEACHED
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Raesene »

Good thing he survived - for now.

If you are proposing an award for saving a fellow soldier a name like fratres legionis (or whatever the proper latin name would be) sounds appropriate. Playing with names, Rescuer's Cross or Sacrifice Cross sound odd (the latter especially, that seems to be a posthumous award).
Maybe call it a Saviour's Cross, although that might be a bit too blasphemous for the period. Better name it Saviour's Star ?

A Pacific Cross being awarded for an action in the Atlantic ocean would also be odd... :-)

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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Eternal_Freedom »

It strikes me that having both a Medal of Valour and a Medal of Honour would be confusing, but that's just me.

Also, smug grin since my ship scored on the enemy at 15,000 yards :D
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

Eternal_Freedom wrote:It strikes me that having both a Medal of Valour and a Medal of Honour would be confusing, but that's just me.
From what I've seen, the MoV did exist briefly before being replaced. The idea was a medal for actions that didn't quite merit a MoH.
Also, smug grin since my ship scored on the enemy at 15,000 yards :D
:D

I did mess up. I wasn't as zoomed in as I thought, so I thought the ships were closer. And I was a bit overcautious about torpedoes. With Level 1 TPS and torpedoes of this tech level, the BBs could have tanked a hit or two (as Sovereign actually did) without major risk of being sunk. Had I closed earlier I might have very well snagged Lothringen too. And maybe inflicted more damage to Preussen. Oh well.
”A Radical is a man with both feet planted firmly in the air.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

DONALD J. TRUMP IS A SEDITIOUS TRAITOR AND MUST BE IMPEACHED
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Re: Let's Play "Rule The Waves" w/ Steve's Custom Country "Cascadia"

Post by Steve »

The Admiralty
Portland, Federal District
29 April 1910



A long Friday had passed in the Admiralty. Admiral Garrett had been in meetings to go over the wires coming in from Chuuk about a battle between the Cascadian and German battle lines. It was a disappointing report from Admiral MacCallister. He had sent Sovereign back to Chuuk for repair over a torpedo hit and transferred his flag to Superb for the rest of the convoy trip. In the meantime it was shown that the Germans lost only one of three battleships and a light ship, initially believed a light cruiser but more likely a destroyer.

Admiral Garrett had been hoping for a battle like this, but he had wanted it to see the Sovereign and Superb decimate the older German ships. But MacCallister had been too cautious and the day was late when the engagement began. An opportunity wasted, was his thought. But as it was still a victory, MacCallister would have to be commended.

He finished his paperwork for the day, checked for any late wires, and decided it was time to go home. Commander Hutchinson, the night watch officer for the Admiralty, met him on the way out and exchanged brief pleasantries and, as of late, the customary wishes for Thomas' health and recovery.

Thinking about his son caused sharp pain to go through his heart. He thought of his happy little boy, of all the times he'd come home from the sea as a Captain and then Admiral and found his happy son bounding up to him. He had spent so little time with him as a little child…

The military driver took him home. It was a spring rain that was drizzling upon Portland. It was the kind of rain he was used to, that he had known since he was an eleven year old boy first stepping off the clipper to Oregon with his family. They'd left Maryland in a hurry, hounded by secessionist neighbors for his father's abolitionist leanings and Republican membership, the family home ransacked by the Confederacy's raiders after the Union disaster in '62. Every spare dollar the family had went into the passage to the the Pacific.. He remembered that first sea voyage clearly, an adventure of a lifetime for a ten year old boy fraught with worry about the loss of his home. He could remember the warmth of the tropic winter, the railroad through the steaming Panamanian jungle that linked the Atlantic to the Pacific.

The car was motoring over the bridge that spanned the Willamette. A road sign reminded everyone that they were entering the province of Oregon and had departed the jurisdiction of the Federal District. Other vehicles motored along beside them and remaining horse-drawn broughams and hansoms rattled along in their sole remaining lanes on the bridge. Merchantmen teemed below. More than was usual. He frowned. There were quite a few ship owners who were refusing to send their vessels out for the insurance costs. Their voices were now added to those calling for peace.

He agreed that the war should end. Cascadia had failed to save the Marianas rebels. But he did not agree with the Socialist view of "peace at any price". Cascadia had worked hard to win the respect of the world. Breaking and giving in to Germany would ruin that. It would make a mockery of the sacrifices his nation had endured.

Thoughts of Thomas returned. Not just the sacrifices of the nation. The sacrifices of his family.

They moved off the bridge and into the roads. Traffic was still quite heavy. The military driver obediently kept to the best streets and drove to the upper class neighborhood where the Admiral's townhouse was located. Initially rented, then bought, the townhouse remained in one of the more fashionable districts. His neighbors included prominent Parliamentarians, bankers, and corporate owners. The head of the Trans-Pacific Trading Company was a regular fixture of neighborhood get-togethers. As of late he had been more insistant that the Admiral find a way to influence the Government into a peace, even if some concessions were needed. Or at least, he had until word came of what happened to Thomas.

They arrived at his home. He took his umbrella and used it for cover from the rain until he was in the door. The current maid, Mei Ling, happily took the umbrella and set it aside. He shed his coat with her help. A twinge of pain in his shoulder reminded him, bitterly, of his advancing age. In just a couple of years he would be sixty.

Before he could go any further Sophie dashed into the room. "Dad!" She threw her arms around him. "Dad, you've got to come!"

Admiral Garrett looked down at her. "What is it? What has you so excited…"

"We got a letter today!", she declared. "It's from Thomas!"



There were tears of mixed relief and horror in the Admiral's eyes as his wife finished reading Thomas' letter, dated the prior March. The summation of his wounds made for bitter reading. A lost eye, hald of his hand, wounds to his leg and side… my poor boy.

But he couldn't restrain the surge of pride at how Thomas received those wounds. Carrying an injured comrade to safety? That was bravery and good citizenship, and that his son displayed such bravery in such horrid circumstances was something no good father could fail to feel a warm pride in.

"He's going to come home now," Rachel said. "They have to let him come home with such wounds."

"Possibly."

Rachel gave him a sharp look.

The Admiral sighed. "The Army has lost two hundred thousand men just this spring, dear. They need personnel."

Sophie exploded in anger. "They would send him back to fight with…"

"No, no…" He shook his head and assuage his daughter's disbelieving anger at that thought. "No, with such wounds Thomas will not be called back to combat duty. But he would likely be assigned as staff personnel somewhere. As soon as he can walk and his wounds are properly recovered. This would free up a man who can fight to be assigned to combat duty."

Sophie nodded in acceptance of that. Not that she was happy. She wanted her brother home.

And so did the Admiral.



Rose Garden
Portland, Federal District
30 April 1910



The letter from Thomas had brightened the family considerably. And the weather matched it - the spring rainstorm had moved on and Saturday the 30th had proven a bright, happy day.

With that in mind the Admiral resolved to take a long lunch. But not before using the new phone line from the Admiralty to his townhouse to call his wife to come over. Sophie and Gabbie were with a birthday celebration for one of Gabbie's classmates, allowing the Admiral and Rachel to be by themselves for a walk in the Rose Garden.

The Rose Garden had been a creation of Sir Harold Kingsley, the first British minister to the Cascadian Republic. He had helped fund the site and purchase the land, not to mention getting the flowers themselves, on behalf of his wife and her desire for a garden. The British Embassy was still in its original site in the middle of the Garden district, although Kingsley had signed the rest of the Garden over to the Federal District upon his departure from Portland for other assignments.

The Admiral was in his uniform, Rachel in a fine spring dress of turquoise and blue, and they walked arm-in-arm among the roses of the main lane that gave the Garden its name. Other couples walked here and there. Young loves, older couples, it was a preferred spot for people across the city. The Admiral and Rachel had come here with decreasing frequency over the years since he assumed his first post with the Admiralty. Having Gabbie to raise, his increased workload, they had all conspired against the original frequency of their visits.

When they turned off into a side lane to observe the tulips (provided thirty years ago as a gift from the Dutch minister in Portland), they stopped. A familiar figure was turning to face them. He was in a nice suit, gray in color with a simple bowtie and a decent hat. Not richly-dressed, but formally. His eyes met them and a small smile curled his face at seeing Admiral Garrett.

"Representative Flagg." The Admiral nodded his head slightly in recognition. "I hardly expected to see you here. I would imagine you would be among the workingmen."

"Every man deserves a day off, Admiral," the Socialist leader replied amiably. "That is part of my plan for our nation. Paid time off for our working class. To enjoy their lives as any citizen should be able to." Flagg gestured to the Garden. "I rarely visit here for obvious reasons. I thought I might give it a look. Quite the spectacle. Built by a wealthy Englishman to satisfy the whims of his wife. Maintained to please the upper class of the national capital. I can't help but notice that it is the wealthy who are welcome here."

"There is no restriction on the Rose Garden," Rachel reminded him. "You know that."

"Do I?" Flagg had a thoughtful look. "In this part of town, any man who shows up in the simple dress or uniform of a workingman is liable to be stopped by the District Police and questioned. Should he step in here he will be stared at. The regulars will cross the road rather than pass by him. Police will be hailed for fear of the ruffian. And who among the working classes of our capital, indeed our country, could have the time to come here? There's always another shift at the factory and cabs cost so much. So no, I am afraid I disagree, Mrs. Garrett. The workingman is not welcome here."

"A public transportation system for the city would be useful, I would agree," the Admiral ventured.

"And you will accept the taxes necessary to pay for it, hrm?"

"That is the point of taxes, is it not? The nation, as a whole, paying for things that smaller fortunes cannot afford."

"Ah." Flagg smiled thinly. "And if the cost came out of your naval budget? If we were to cancel one of your precious castles of steel to fund it?"

The Admiral returned the thin smile. "That is the purview of the Government. Although I think your proposed limits to the naval budget are rather unpopular."

"Are they, then?" Flagg chuckled. "Not so much anymore, I think. The people of this country realize the suffering that you and your kind promise them. I think they are far more receptive to my proposals today than they were two years ago."

"They are tired of the war, yes. Because nothing further has been accomplished. Nothing worth the blood that we have shed. But they will not agree to the disarmament of our nation over that." The Admiral shook his head. "Our nation needs the Navy. It is the only way to protect our nation."

"You mean protect our precious empire," Flagg countered. "An empire that is useless to us. Hostile to our national character."

"The Filipinos' freedom has not changed."

"'Freedom' like theirs is little more than a gilded chain, and you know that."

"What I would like to know, sir, is who are you to judge my husband for the work he does for our nation?", Rachel asked. "You have never faced danger like he has. You know nothing of the horrible things he saw in the Spanish prisons, the tortures the Spaniards inflicted upon Filipino patriots. He put a stop to that. Who are you to judge him?"

"I judge him because he is, in part, responsible for this madness," Flagg countered. "I judge him as a tool of imperialism, as a man who benefits materially from suffering that he does not understand and will never seek to understand. You know nothing of the suffering of our working classes, the wives who miss husbands carried off by force to fight for your war, the children starving because their father is not here to pay for their bread, the parents who pray nightly to a figment to save their children lying cold and dead in the bloodied trenches you have wrought. What do you know of the workingmen permanently crippled by this war, doomed to a meager pension and unable to work for the wounds they have suffered in your name? What do you two, the pampered children of capitalists and aristocrats, know of the suffering this war has…"

"OUR SON HAS BEEN MAIMED!"

Flagg stopped. Rachel jumped at the ferocity, the anguish and rage, in her husband's roaring voice. The Admiral glared fiercely at his political enemy with all the appearance of a man who was on the cusp of losing his temper.

"Our son is in France," the Admiral pointed out. His voice was tense with anger. "He, too, was drafted, though he wants nothing to do with the military and prays every day for his release from service. And he was brought into the battle and wounded there. And now he will come home incomplete. He has been permanently scarred and maimed by this war! So don't you Goddamned tell me I know nothing of the suffering of our people!" The Admiral kept his finger pointed at Flagg. "This world is not perfect! Your ideas may have merit, yes. The working class of this country should be cared for, yes, but your solutions are as likely to bankrupt us as help!"

There was quiet for a moment. "I see I shall not convince you." Flagg turned away. "It will all come down to the People, Admiral. None of us - not myself, not the Secretary of State, certainly not you and your precious Navy - can stand against them."

Neither of them said anything to the departing figure as he left.
”A Radical is a man with both feet planted firmly in the air.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

DONALD J. TRUMP IS A SEDITIOUS TRAITOR AND MUST BE IMPEACHED
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