WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Stark » 2013-01-26 07:48pm

Dominarch's Hope wrote:So yes, Stark, Germany wins this round and curtails Russia's growth, it can keep a boot on the continent for the forseeable future. Which includes a Germany which will one day eclipse the UK is GDP and stay there.
Do you honestly not see how this is just spinning a load of bullshit and then saying 'and they lived happily ever after'? Can you even try to consider or describe the requirements of holding territory like this, or is your alt history addled brain just content to colour in a country green and leave it at that?

If the world was an abacus, you'd be a lot less useless than you are right now.

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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Thanas » 2013-01-26 07:52pm

It is even funnier considering German policy for over a century at that point had been "unite German countries and do not take on dirty foreigners unless you absolutely have to". The scenario reads like a game of Victoria II.

EDIT: They might have freed some peoples Russia occupied, but this hardly translates into "and resources for all".
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dr. Trainwreck » 2013-01-26 08:27pm

Dominarch's Hope wrote:<snip loads of incredible bullshit>
Stop thinking life is a Total War game.
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dominarch's Hope » 2013-01-26 08:48pm

Thanas wrote:It is even funnier considering German policy for over a century at that point had been "unite German countries and do not take on dirty foreigners unless you absolutely have to". The scenario reads like a game of Victoria II.

EDIT: They might have freed some peoples Russia occupied, but this hardly translates into "and resources for all".
What was Brest-Litovsk? The Ukraine itself, post war, is a assistance against another blockade. It is in German Strategic interest of the time to weaken and debilitate Russia.

Yes, any German victory in WWI would result in Eastern territories being taken. If nothing more than a strategic buffer against future Russian aggression.
Because, Murrica, thats why.

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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Simon_Jester » 2013-01-26 08:52pm

The problem is that in real life, gaining resources and power through conquest doesn't work. Not unless you spend a generation or two consolidating each block of conquests and turning it into another chunk of your own state- which is the successful trick used by empires like Rome.

The only way to profit from conquest in the short run is looting, and industrial societies don't loot very well. Because the resources you get from a territory by looting are nothing compared to the massive productivity that same territory would have during peacetime. Or compared to the cost of waging industrialized warfare to take the territory away in the first place.

A war-ravaged Ukraine the Germans are still trying to put out the fires of rebellion in is not going to be a 'breadbasket' nearly as desirable as places like Argentina or the American Great Plains, the places the blockade cuts them off from.
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dominarch's Hope » 2013-01-26 09:01pm

You and Stark are fucking ignorant.


Do you know what happened to uprisings and revolts pre-Nuremberg? Heres a hint:partisans had zero recognized rights. Heres another, Germany didnt exactly suffer from epic partisan warfare in the first go around.


Unless you have the army on your side, like in Russia during the revolution, you are pretty much fucked.


Uprisings and revolts were dealt with via machine gun fire and artillery. And since rebellions of this day couldnt coordinate nationally, it was almost impossible to pull off anything but localized actions.


And thats assuming that post-war Ukraine would be any more of a problem than it was during the war.



You have went from pointing out the flaws of the op to revelling in gleeful stupidity.

And the Germans pushed for the war out of fear of what Russia was doing, this is recognized and acknowledged. And I beleive Brest-Litovsk actually freed the Baltics into independent republics.


Thanas, it looks like you are reversing actual OTL history.
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Thanas » 2013-01-26 09:31pm

Dominarch's Hope wrote:
Thanas wrote:It is even funnier considering German policy for over a century at that point had been "unite German countries and do not take on dirty foreigners unless you absolutely have to". The scenario reads like a game of Victoria II.

EDIT: They might have freed some peoples Russia occupied, but this hardly translates into "and resources for all".
What was Brest-Litovsk?
The treaty of Brest-Litovsk. You might want to look it up. God's sake man, this is elementary WWI history.
The Ukraine itself, post war, is a assistance against another blockade. It is in German Strategic interest of the time to weaken and debilitate Russia.

Yes, any German victory in WWI would result in Eastern territories being taken. If nothing more than a strategic buffer against future Russian aggression.
Are you freaking stupid? I already told you what German grand strategy was. It was not "gobble up more uneducated minorities in the east". At best they would take some land that Germany might have a historic claim to like the former Deutschordensland. Any weakening of Russia would not be done via German conquest, but by forcing Russia to liberate people or turning those territories into satellites.
Dominarch's Hope wrote:Do you know what happened to uprisings and revolts pre-Nuremberg? Heres a hint:partisans had zero recognized rights. Heres another, Germany didnt exactly suffer from epic partisan warfare in the first go around.
Actually, large amounts of troops were needed in actual history to secure the territories ceded by Russia under Brest-Litovsk. I see no reason why this would be different in your scenario and you of all people should be careful when throwing ignorant around. Also, yes, Germany did execute quite a lot of civilians in the east for partisan activities, I have seen the pictures myself.
Dominarch's Hope wrote:Uprisings and revolts were dealt with via machine gun fire and artillery. And since rebellions of this day couldnt coordinate nationally, it was almost impossible to pull off anything but localized actions.

And thats assuming that post-war Ukraine would be any more of a problem than it was during the war.
I am sorry to interrupt your wanking with actual historical facts, but do you even know how many troops were neeeded to occupy the Ukraine in WWI?
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dominarch's Hope » 2013-01-27 02:07pm

I was asking that question in the manner of answering a Jeopardy question.


Now, could Germany spare the troops to occupy the Ukraine after the fighting in France and Russia is over? Yes.
Because, Murrica, thats why.

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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Thanas » 2013-01-27 02:12pm

Dominarch's Hope wrote:I was asking that question in the manner of answering a Jeopardy question.


Now, could Germany spare the troops to occupy the Ukraine after the fighting in France and Russia is over? Yes.
Actually, the outcome of the western front suggests they could not, and more importantly why would they? How about you actually answer the points raised?
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A decision must be made in the life of every nation at the very moment when the grasp of the enemy is at its throat. Then, it seems that the only way to survive is to use the means of the enemy, to rest survival upon what is expedient, to look the other way. Well, the answer to that is 'survival as what'? A country isn't a rock. It's not an extension of one's self. It's what it stands for. It's what it stands for when standing for something is the most difficult! - Chief Judge Haywood
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dominarch's Hope » 2013-01-27 02:28pm

The Western Front is not being fought in this scenario. It was concluded in 1914/15. Unless OP is just literally saying that mothing changes in regards to the war and that the real focus is internal development and historical influence of a Russian Empire that remains whole.


Problem is Nicholas II. He is an idiot.
Because, Murrica, thats why.

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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Thanas » 2013-01-27 02:43pm

Again, none of that in any way responds to the points raised by me.
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A decision must be made in the life of every nation at the very moment when the grasp of the enemy is at its throat. Then, it seems that the only way to survive is to use the means of the enemy, to rest survival upon what is expedient, to look the other way. Well, the answer to that is 'survival as what'? A country isn't a rock. It's not an extension of one's self. It's what it stands for. It's what it stands for when standing for something is the most difficult! - Chief Judge Haywood
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Simon_Jester » 2013-01-27 03:29pm

Dominarch's Hope wrote:You and Stark are fucking ignorant.

Do you know what happened to uprisings and revolts pre-Nuremberg? Heres a hint:partisans had zero recognized rights. Heres another, Germany didnt exactly suffer from epic partisan warfare in the first go around.

Unless you have the army on your side, like in Russia during the revolution, you are pretty much fucked.

Uprisings and revolts were dealt with via machine gun fire and artillery. And since rebellions of this day couldnt coordinate nationally, it was almost impossible to pull off anything but localized actions...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peninsular ... rrilla_war

Sigh. I had such hopes for you from the other thread.
Dominarch's Hope wrote:The Western Front is not being fought in this scenario. It was concluded in 1914/15. Unless OP is just literally saying that mothing changes in regards to the war and that the real focus is internal development and historical influence of a Russian Empire that remains whole.

Problem is Nicholas II. He is an idiot.
Ah, I see. Your problem is that you said "France is crushed" as such an afterthought that no one noticed you were asserting it. You might want to revisit that assertion.
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dominarch's Hope » 2013-01-27 08:49pm

Simon_Jester wrote:
Dominarch's Hope wrote:You and Stark are fucking ignorant.

Do you know what happened to uprisings and revolts pre-Nuremberg? Heres a hint:partisans had zero recognized rights. Heres another, Germany didnt exactly suffer from epic partisan warfare in the first go around.

Unless you have the army on your side, like in Russia during the revolution, you are pretty much fucked.

Uprisings and revolts were dealt with via machine gun fire and artillery. And since rebellions of this day couldnt coordinate nationally, it was almost impossible to pull off anything but localized actions...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peninsular ... rrilla_war

Sigh. I had such hopes for you from the other thread.
Dominarch's Hope wrote:The Western Front is not being fought in this scenario. It was concluded in 1914/15. Unless OP is just literally saying that mothing changes in regards to the war and that the real focus is internal development and historical influence of a Russian Empire that remains whole.

Problem is Nicholas II. He is an idiot.
Ah, I see. Your problem is that you said "France is crushed" as such an afterthought that no one noticed you were asserting it. You might want to revisit that assertion.
Ok. Assume France isnt crushed. And Russia is about as neutral as the US was.

Russia sells Germany grain and other foodstuffs. It might not completely alleviate the situation, but it extends the war into 1919. Maybe even 1920. Russia possibly even sells armaments and ammunition to Germany, making a nice buck and gearing up its own industry with the capital inflow.

As for how awful France has it, it means zero forces are sent against Russia, and the entire Austro-Hungarian army can swing towards France in conjunction with the German army.

Wiki claims that the K.u.K was around 3.5 million. Nearly all of that will be against France this time around. Plus the soldiers that Germany raised against Russia.

Its more than 3 million total. Are you saying that doesnt make a difference?
Because, Murrica, thats why.

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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Esquire » 2013-01-27 10:35pm

This is pure speculation - as anything of this sort must be - but being massively outnumbered might actually work to France's advantage. I don't know enough about the general mindset of the French high command during the Great War to say one way or the other, but if they decided to stand on the defensive and not throw away whole divisions in hopeless attacks on machine-gun positions, they might be able to bleed Germany and Austria-Hungary until either the armies revolt or the British come up with tanks again.
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dominarch's Hope » 2013-01-27 11:03pm

But literally nobody did that unless it was inbetween massive attacks. Because they were stupidly, and willfully, ignorant of what would happen if you charge across a trench straight into prepared machine guns and artillery and rifles.
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Esquire » 2013-01-27 11:34pm

Yes, but perhaps if your army is outnumbered three to one, as the French one would be against the other half of the German army as well as the Austrian one (where'd Italy go, anyway?), that might not be true. Or perhaps the French would try harder to keep the war mobile, not wanting to be ground down in trench warfare. If you change events to the degree removing half the war would, why would you dismiss any suggestion that things might not go exactly as they did historically? At least pretend to think about the ramifications of your own scenario. We aren't dealing with clinical insanity on the part of the generals. Neither were these stupid men; misguided, stubborn, and out of touch, certainly, but not stupid. Breakthrough doctrine had worked historically, and they quite reasonably expected it to work in 1914 as well.
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dominarch's Hope » 2013-01-27 11:48pm

The French will attack. They may stop it sooner, but its going to happen.

The question is, will the French even be able to halt the Central Powers long enough to counter attack?

And a mobile war strongly favors the Germans. If the French had done that in OTL instead of trying for trenches, Germany would have won the damned war and held France hostage against the blockade if nothing else. Possibly held it hostage to force the French Fleet to attempt an attack on the Grand Fleet. But thats unlikely, more likely is that America threatens war if Britain doesnt lift the blockade, which they would be likely to do anyways. Then Czar Nicholas II, if some brain cells spark just right, will reach a negotiated peace very quickly and any internal squabbles will be delt with wtih an army that is largely still loyal.

Basically, Franco-Prussian War all over again.
Because, Murrica, thats why.

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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by thejester » 2013-01-28 12:08am

Dominarch's Hope wrote:The French will attack. They may stop it sooner, but its going to happen.
Why? You seem to be totally ignoring the way French strategy was governed by Entente strategy and in particular Russia - and more importantly, if Russia is neutral, how does France end up in conflict with Germany and Austria-Hungray in the first place?
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dominarch's Hope » 2013-01-28 12:14am

Whats the word, "Offensive Spirit"?

Elan! Thats the word! Elan! Sheer Elan.

Although you are correct that this may avoid the larger war altogether.
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dr. Trainwreck » 2013-01-28 01:46am

What does Italy do in this war? Do they still change sides in 1916? Because if so, your precious Austrians will have work to do.

There's also, you know, the thing with the Schlieffen Plan. What tells you it would have worked even with the entirety of Germany's strength? How about this: so many soldiers at one place strain German logistics, not to mention the incredible congestion of all those people marching around in northern France, so the German advance is clogged up and they still lose at the Marne, followed by a retreat in a more defensible ground, you know, one where they can fortify and cover with artillery. Like Belgium. Remarque still gets to write his damn book.

Finally, while I find it hard to accept that trench warfare was the only way, nobody has told me a compelling argument as to why so many generals would choose it anyway besides "durr they were stoopid". And nobody has told me, basing his opinion on the technology and tactics available at the time, how trench warfare could have been different without all these pointless slaughters. I mean, if you're British then Haig is an easy scapegoat for so many dead Englishmen, but the old bastard had the support of the political leadership, a decent amount of respect by his peers and subordinates, and his funeral in 1928 was declared a day of national mourning. All dunces?
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dominarch's Hope » 2013-01-28 01:55am

Italy? No one cares. They dont matter at all.

And yes, trench warfare was the only answer until tanks. Its essentially a delaying effort. And yes, the French and British dying by the millions and the Germans doing the same against prepared trenches is going to happen.


Its how they learned to not do it.
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Dr. Trainwreck » 2013-01-28 02:44am

We don't need a global thermonuclear war to understand it would be bad to have one. Trenches seemed, at that time, in that place, a reasonably good strategy. They still were after tanks were first fielded. Why?

Also, if trench warfare still happens in your alternate scenario, how could the war possibly end in 1915 just because the Germans have more men at the West? Trench warfare is attrition warfare; even if they won, they'd still lose millions and be unable to occupy the Ukraine.
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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Alkaloid » 2013-01-28 04:23am

And yes, trench warfare was the only answer until tanks. Its essentially a delaying effort. And yes, the French and British dying by the millions and the Germans doing the same against prepared trenches is going to happen.
That must be why there wasn't an entire theatre of the first world war where mobile warfare was a big thing.

Wait, no, there was. It was Africa.

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Re: WWI if Russia & US declared neutrality

Post by Simon_Jester » 2013-01-28 08:21am

thejester wrote:
Dominarch's Hope wrote:The French will attack. They may stop it sooner, but its going to happen.
Why? You seem to be totally ignoring the way French strategy was governed by Entente strategy and in particular Russia - and more importantly, if Russia is neutral, how does France end up in conflict with Germany and Austria-Hungray in the first place?
This is probably the clincher. The only reason for France to end up in a war at all is that the Germans issued an ultimatum to France because they knew about the Entente. They were looking at a war with Russia, and wanted their backs secure, so they demanded that France effectively disarm itself (remove troops and weapons from border forts, refuse to mobilize its army). France refused, and the Germans knew perfectly well they'd have to fight both.

But the French aren't fools at the strategic level; they won't attack Germany over the independence of Serbia. Not if Russia isn't getting involved.
Dr. Trainwreck wrote:What does Italy do in this war? Do they still change sides in 1916? Because if so, your precious Austrians will have work to do.

There's also, you know, the thing with the Schlieffen Plan. What tells you it would have worked even with the entirety of Germany's strength? How about this: so many soldiers at one place strain German logistics, not to mention the incredible congestion of all those people marching around in northern France, so the German advance is clogged up and they still lose at the Marne, followed by a retreat in a more defensible ground, you know, one where they can fortify and cover with artillery. Like Belgium. Remarque still gets to write his damn book.
IF the French inexplicably fought without Russia and IF the Germans had their whole army available, they'd have enough manpower to win by Verdun-style attrition. The war might drag out into 1915-16, but not longer than that.
Finally, while I find it hard to accept that trench warfare was the only way, nobody has told me a compelling argument as to why so many generals would choose it anyway besides "durr they were stoopid". And nobody has told me, basing his opinion on the technology and tactics available at the time, how trench warfare could have been different without all these pointless slaughters. I mean, if you're British then Haig is an easy scapegoat for so many dead Englishmen, but the old bastard had the support of the political leadership, a decent amount of respect by his peers and subordinates, and his funeral in 1928 was declared a day of national mourning. All dunces?
The real problem was:

1) The lack of mobile equipment. Military supplies could not move in quantity by road, not at the strategic level where most transport was horse-drawn. They had to travel by rail. Railroads are hideously vulnerable to being torn up by a retreating defender, if the attacking bombardment didn't already wreck them. And the defender can easily wreck any railroad within artillery range of his position. So a fighting force just couldn't be sustained far from the railheads, and the railroads couldn't advance until the enemy's artillery positions were forced backwards. But forcing the enemy back was hard because...

2) The ratio of force to space was huge, compared to any war that had ever happened before. The sheer size of the armies involved had grown by at least a factor of ten, and increased firepower meant that each man could cover more frontage before. In previous wars, digging and manning a trench line that ran from the Channel to the Swiss border would have been totally impossible- Louis XIV or Napoleon would both have loved to do it at the right times, but didn't have the resources. The WWI French (and Germans and British) did. Since the manpower existed to put up field fortifications literally everywhere an army could possibly go, the field fortifications went up, and both armies were forced into this bizarre mutant version of siege warfare.

Trench warfare tactics as we know them were just an update of the 19th century siege tactics that already knew about things like assaulting trenches. The catch is that those tactics were designed for the bloody capture of an isolated fortress- where once you'd taken a few square kilometers of ground you'd won because that was the entire area of the fortress. They were not designed for a situation where capturing a few square kilometers just means the enemy backs up a thousand meters to dig in on the next range of hills.
Dominarch's Hope wrote:Italy? No one cares. They dont matter at all.
Bullshit. They matter tremendously; just by existing their army tied up huge forces. Sure, it collapsed in 1917, but so did that of several other powers. That had more to do with the stresses of prolonged total warfare than anything else.

On the other hand, Italy is very likely to stay neutral or join the Central Powers in a war where Russia isn't a factor. So while you're too stupid to care, it doesn't actually change the outcome.
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