A Blunted Sickle - Thread II

Japan is doing the math on "Is an army/navy civil war more or less costly than starting a war in SE Asia against an alliance that's looking *much* more stable than IRL (plus, America doesn't have the political capital to force an oil embargo, so the Allies are allowing sales if the Japanese have hard currency to buy) and right now, civil war might be a winner.
In OTL circumstances (oil embargo, etc.) pushed the two Japanese services together and enhanced the prestige of the IJA. Here, the IJA is doing a little less well and the fact that the IJA General Staff was set up by the Germans while the IJN was very heavily modelled on the Royal Navy. There's nothing firm, but I think it's strongly suggestive that tensions between the two services will be much higher while the IJN at least will have no interest in starting a war with the Entente powers.

Likely outcome in Germany is a demilitarized state cut down to Poland's benefit, policed by UK&France for two generations, with German minorities outside Germany forcibly relocated, as the Allies are super disinterested in fighting this war again in twenty years.
What I have in mind is more or less what happened to Germany in OTL under a Japanese-style pacifist constitution (possibly even more stringent than Japan's). It'll be quite some time before Germany gets that level of self-government though: short term policy is that there is no longer a German government of any sort and civil government is handled by the military occupation authorities, although I'd bet that plan doesn't survive long in contact with reality.

Certainly wary, the Soviets in this TL have been no friend of the Allies, bellicose with Finland and Romania, and are responsible for no small amount of material support to the Nazis (Stalin, hoping to string Hitler along just enough to let the West bleed itself white in preparation for Red revolution).

Long term, Tube Alloys and the Franco-British nuclear program look to keep the USSR out of Europe, the future looks to be nothing short of very interesting, with a cold war likely very similar and yet very different from our own in the cards
I've partially written it (technology and hardware but no politics). What I have in mind is somewhere between OTL and the 1930s, played out by very nuclear-heavy forces.
The 1950s British Global Strategy Paper (pre-Sandystorm) is driving a lot of this: the British were well aware that they would lose any conventional war with the Soviet Union, and that they had no interest in invading the USSR. Therefore, the logic (which they never quite followed through to it's logical conclusion - largely due to the influence of the US via NATO I suspect) was that they needed the cheapest possible colonial gendarmerie, a handful of armoured divisions to act as a credible tripwire and as many nuclear weapons as they could lay their hands on. ITTL, Japan means that they need a high-end navy rather than some floating airbases, but fundamentally the logic reads across to this timeline.

Wouldn't the advantage to taking Berlin be that a general Surrender might be agreed to by the German leadership allowing the Polish Home Army to not have to fight any more?
That rather relies on people believing it'll happen quickly. Right now the ZWZ controls something like a third of Poland, and with some very limited support (anything heavier than small arms, essentially) could take the rest pretty quickly.

The question is whether Stalin is going to get his plans to invade the remainder of pre-war Lithuania or not.
It's scheduled to happen the day after tomorrow, so they'd better get a move-on. Crippled by a lack of trucks or not, I'd be surprised if the RKKA can't occupy all of it by sunset given the amount of high-level attention they're getting and the distinct lack of defending forces.

So once the rail connections in the Ruhr are fixed, the British and French can ship the fuel by rail almost to the front line? I presume the break of Gauge is on the pre-war Polish/Soviet border?
The rail lines out of the Ruhr are comprehensively smashed, mostly by the RAF - fuel is coming in via Hamburg and then shipped by rail from there. The system is much more intact but has lots of low-level problems and a severe coal shortage - that's why they can get a trickle through so fast. The lines out of the Ruhr won't be much use before the springtime.

Also without the fanatics, I don't think there is any chance of a Fortress Norway.
Norwegians in the north, British in the south, and potentially Union in the east if they keep fighting after a German surrender. Zero chance of it surviving more than a few days after the rest of Germany.
 
That rather relies on people believing it'll happen quickly. Right now the ZWZ controls something like a third of Poland, and with some very limited support (anything heavier than small arms, essentially) could take the rest pretty quickly.
.

It's scheduled to happen the day after tomorrow, so they'd better get a move-on. Crippled by a lack of trucks or not, I'd be surprised if the RKKA can't occupy all of it by sunset given the amount of high-level attention they're getting and the distinct lack of defending forces.


The rail lines out of the Ruhr are comprehensively smashed, mostly by the RAF - fuel is coming in via Hamburg and then shipped by rail from there. The system is much more intact but has lots of low-level problems and a severe coal shortage - that's why they can get a trickle through so fast. The lines out of the Ruhr won't be much use before the springtime.


Norwegians in the north, British in the south, and potentially Union in the east if they keep fighting after a German surrender. Zero chance of it surviving more than a few days after the rest of Germany.
The Hungarians are *supposed* to be helping in that way, but don't appear to be moving anywhere near fast enough. (Source of Hungarian/Polish tension post-war?)

The question is whether the Nazis would fight, fight more fiercely, or just run.

And of course coal supplies are going to be relatively low given the time of year and fierceness of the winter :(

Agreed, zero chance. But the Swedes would end up doing most of the work if they get involved. Only thing that would survive less time is Fortress Denmark. (except Bornholm, that would last for quite some time)
 
I normally wait until at least one week in the timeline to pass before making a new map, but things are moving fast now and I had some free time, so here is my Christmas present for the group. Cheers!:)

P.S. I uploaded a new file to correct the file name (should be 1942, not 1941).
 

Attachments

Last edited:
Nice map ngf!

Awesome story pdf27!

Caught up between the thread and a half of story and information. Awesome attention to detail.

One question. With December 7th 1941 butterflied away; what is the state of the Japanese army and what part of the Chinese front are they focusing on?
 
Nice map ngf!

Awesome story pdf27!

Caught up between the thread and a half of story and information. Awesome attention to detail.

One question. With December 7th 1941 butterflied away; what is the state of the Japanese army and what part of the Chinese front are they focusing on?
Overall, pdf27 hasn't dealt that much with actual front lines in Asia for this story.

The key points as far as I can tell in terms of Japan relative to OTL.
1) The French Navy (MN) is still a working entity. They aren't laying down new Ships during the war, but completed the major ones in progress when the Germans invaded. Arguably in 1939, the Japanese had the 3rd best Navy and the French the 4th (with a wide gap). The Italians are 5th, but the Italian Navy (RM) is acting more or less in peacetime mode so the French aren't that worried. If the Italians did anything stupid, they'd have about 2 weeks before they'd all be on the bottom because of...
2) The Royal Navy is less stressed in the Atlantic, and is at peacetime mode or less in the Mediterranean. So most of the newer Ships are sitting in Singapore, and the RN and MN outnumber the Japanese....
3) And because the French are still in it and in control of the FIC, the Japanese have no ports in FIC *and* in addition, Thailand is more scared of the Entente (in the 19th century, they were a neutral zone between British South Asia and FIC, now they know that they'd get squashed with the British and French on the same side.
4) The Dutch are still selling oil to the Japanese at (as far as I can tell) Market prices. They need the money to defend (and presumably going forward rebuild) the Netherlands in Europe so the Americans haven't managed to squeeze off that tap.
5) So the IJN is *considerably* less desperate and more cautious.
6) With FIC still under French control, weaponry can make its way into China along pre-war paths. Even with "accidental" damage to the Railroad from Vietnam to Southern China, it is *still* considerably easier to ship weaponry there.
7) When Germany surrenders there will be a *lot* of German armaments that won't be needed any more, so even if the Entente aren't *deliberately* shipping weapons to the RoC, the cost of surpluss weapons will go down, which will make buyers like the RoC happier.

So the choices for Japan are basically.
1) Pull back to the existing puppet states that they can keep (at least short term).
2) Go to war with some number of Pacific powers at for the most part worse (other than perhaps stockpiled Oil) conditions than OTL (and trying to go to war with the USA but not the Entente or vice versa gets really difficult)
3) Keep fighting in China only even as things get worse there
4)Dispute over the choices of 1-3 to the point where the IJA and IJN go to war with each other!

(And from what pdf27 has said, he hasn't decided which choice the Japanese will take!)

So balance out the IJA currently having more oil with the RoC having better access to weapons, not sure what the balance is.
 
(plus, America doesn't have the political capital to force an oil embargo, so the Allies are allowing sales if the Japanese have hard currency to buy)
Not Embargo, but could make it very difficult on Royal Dutch Shell, since they produced around 8M tons, and had 107 tankers to move that Crude around, the US had 170M tons, with 383 tankers.
The 5 US Oil 'Sisters' could undercut every other market the Dutch were in, killing the profits, as long as they were selling to Japan.

Would it be worth it to the Dutch? 'Nice Oil business you have there, Shell. Shame if anything happened to it' says the Pin Stripe suited Americans

Similar to what was done to Mexico in 1938.
Mexico was very short of tankers to move that crude around and when they had tankers, to actually sell it after they were blackballed, ended up they did deals with Italy, that they would build tankers for Mexico, in exchange for favorable Oil Sales- and other Barter Deals with Germany and Spain
 

Dageraad

Donor
Royal Dutch Shell was then, and still is, a full Anglo-Dutch venture. By making the 5 American sisters work together you are taking on more than just the Dutch
 
Royal Dutch Shell was then, and still is, a full Anglo-Dutch venture. By making the 5 American sisters work together you are taking on more than just the Dutch
At this point the US had enough Oil to bury everyone. Number #2 producer was Venezuela at 30.5M then #3, the USSR, at 30.3M

Iran had 10.3M, Iraq 3.8M
Now the UK had enough Tankers(450), but they were buying and moving Oil from the US Majors.

It's a pissing contest that BP would also lose. That's why Royal Dutch Shell and BP went with that Cartel, they would be blown out if they were out of it.

Would pissing off the US be worth Japanese sales?
 
At this point the US had enough Oil to bury everyone. Number #2 producer was Venezuela at 30.5M then #3, the USSR, at 30.3M

Iran had 10.3M, Iraq 3.8M
Now the UK had enough Tankers(450), but they were buying and moving Oil from the US Majors.

It's a pissing contest that BP would also lose. That's why Royal Dutch Shell and BP went with that Cartel, they would be blown out if they were out of it.

Would pissing off the US be worth Japanese sales?
I'm not sure how this "non-embargo" embargo is supposed to work?
- Are the US majors refusing to supply oil to companies that trade with the Japanese?
- Or are they flooding the market to drive down the price & the profits of any other oil companies which are trading with the Japanese?
Although the latter may result in the Japanese being able to buy oil more cheaply if the market is flooded with excess.
 
I'm not sure how this "non-embargo" embargo is supposed to work?
- Are the US majors refusing to supply oil to companies that trade with the Japanese?
- Or are they flooding the market to drive down the price & the profits of any other oil companies which are trading with the Japanese?
Although the latter may result in the Japanese being able to buy oil more cheaply if the market is flooded with excess.
Yes to both, refuse to supply, and then offer lower cost oil to that market, cutting them out.

Yes, Oil is fungible, but when losing money, why offer the Japanese that Deal?

But besides the Stick, would give the Carrot of moving out of other markers for Shell and BP to get more sales to.


At this point the War will not last forever, and the US will still have all that Oil, with most of the South American producers following the US lead-and the Allies need to think about postwar recovery.

Do they want the preWar marketshare after the War in Europe is done, or not- for the sake of possibly buying off the Japanese?

The other thing with tankers, is if they were set to move crude, or finished product. Most everyone before the War relied on the US and Panamanians, and lesser extent the Norwegians, to move bulk crude and the others moving finished product from refineries.

Then as now, Venezuela moved most of their heavy crude to the US for refining, and then shipped the refined product outwards, would all still be considered exports by Venezuela, even with the US Gulf Coast detour.
 
One question. With December 7th 1941 butterflied away; what is the state of the Japanese army and what part of the Chinese front are they focusing on?
I'm trying not to be too specific, simply because the entire world is too big a canvas for me to cope with and hope to maintain any degree of accuracy. That's also why this timeline is (not unfairly) frequently accused of being Anglocentric: I live in the UK and my first language is English, so the sources about British forces in 1940-42 are those most accessible to me.

Not Embargo, but could make it very difficult on Royal Dutch Shell, since they produced around 8M tons, and had 107 tankers to move that Crude around, the US had 170M tons, with 383 tankers.
The 5 US Oil 'Sisters' could undercut every other market the Dutch were in, killing the profits, as long as they were selling to Japan.
Would it be worth it to the Dutch? 'Nice Oil business you have there, Shell. Shame if anything happened to it' says the Pin Stripe suited Americans
It's a pissing contest that BP would also lose. That's why Royal Dutch Shell and BP went with that Cartel, they would be blown out if they were out of it.
Would pissing off the US be worth Japanese sales?
More the bidding of the China Lobby.
OTL they did, and in this ATL, wouldn't have less influence. FDR and the China Lobby had goals that aligned.
The key point here is that the OTL embargo was only tightened up significantly after the Japanese occupation of French Indochina: support for the China Lobby in the US was very much in the Sir Humphrey mode of "all aid short of help", but the occupation of French Indochina was clearly a move towards the possessions of the colonial powers in the region and by implication the Philippines. ITTL a fairly general embargo act has been passed which empowers the President to restrict exports of war material of various types - the strength of it isn't mentioned in the text but in my head my expectation is that Japan will be impacted with restrictions on iso-octane and weapons, plus possibly some specialist alloys.
The Japanese are feeling a bit paranoid about this (rightly), so they're trying to shift their trading patterns to work with the Dutch rather than the Americans in the hope that they won't cut off an established trading partner who has a large military presence near their oilfields just because of US pressure (and in the process making it marginally less likely that the US would try to apply the pressure).

I'm not sure how this "non-embargo" embargo is supposed to work?
- Are the US majors refusing to supply oil to companies that trade with the Japanese?
- Or are they flooding the market to drive down the price & the profits of any other oil companies which are trading with the Japanese?
Although the latter may result in the Japanese being able to buy oil more cheaply if the market is flooded with excess.
The US President has the power to restrict exports from the US to other countries if he deems that these exports would be detrimental to national security.

The other thing with tankers, is if they were set to move crude, or finished product. Most everyone before the War relied on the US and Panamanians, and lesser extent the Norwegians, to move bulk crude and the others moving finished product from refineries.
Then as now, Venezuela moved most of their heavy crude to the US for refining, and then shipped the refined product outwards, would all still be considered exports by Venezuela, even with the US Gulf Coast detour.
The Dutch are only selling crude to the Japanese, not refined products.
There is another point about tankers - trade patterns aren't as badly disrupted as OTL, but they're still there and the British & French are burning a hell of a lot more refined gasoline than they were before the war. That means the world is generally a bit short of tankers, so shipping oil to Japan from the DEI rather than Texas would definitely be interesting to the Japanese merchant navy.
 
I read that the Dutch East Indies was starting to reduce the stuff they were buying in Japan in 1939 but I don't know anymore then that.
 
The Dutch are only selling crude to the Japanese, not refined products.
The refined products went elsewhere? While Japan had its own refineries, the DEI had a refinery at Balik Papan built in the 1920s. The Japanese had problems getting the Refineries back on line after the conquest of the DEI iOTL though.
https://www.histclo.com/essay/war/ww2/stra/w2j-oil.html

Having said that, the Japanese can get enough oil from other sources without US Oil, but I think they'd end up having to buy Middle Eastern Oil, with the British then buying from the Americans rather than what they control. All Fungible, but annoying.

The question is whether screwing up the Oil for Japan is worth screwing up the US relations with the Entente, but the Netherlands directly and, I think, with the UK in the longer term.

I would imagine that at this point delivering US Oil to Southern France is viewed as *almost* as safe as it was pre-war. The American Tankers aren't going to Hamburg at this point, but transfering crude in some place like Plymouth to Entente tankers is probably viewed as reasonable by everyone.
 
Now that the end of the war is clearly in sight, several questions now arises about what will happen to Germany in the post-war period? Pdf27 has already said that the Entente has decided not to split Germany up, but other questions still remain open.

  1. I can't recall if pdf27 has already mentioned it, but is it is highly likely that the Free State of Prussia will be abolished, just as it was in the OTL, with its administrative responsibilities devolved to its constituent provinces.
  2. What form of central civil administration will Germany have? Although pdf27 said that Germany will likely have a long military occupation, the Entente will still need to have some form of German civil government in place to carry out the day-to-day administrative burdens. My guess is that the Entente will impose a federal system with a weak central government.
  3. Will there be some tension between the British and French occupation authorities on how they administer their respective zones?
  4. Some mergers of the smaller states and former Prussian provinces is likely, just as in the OTL, to rationalize the administrative tasks (just one look at the complexity of central Germany in that attached map shows that some rationalization will be necessary).
  5. Will the French establish the Saar Protectorate, as in the OTL, or will they push for outright annexation? Will the French make any other territorial demands (i.e., Palatinate, west bank of the Rhine Province)? Under the OTL Morgenthau Plan, France would have received the Saar and the adjacent territories bounded by the Rhine and the Moselle rivers.
  6. In the OTL, the Dutch had some extravagant plans to annex German territory at the end of the war, will any of these come into effect iTTL?
  7. And the big question, where will be the eastern border of Germany? Will Poland push its border westward to the Oder-Neisse Line, as in the OTL, or will the Entente be more concerned with the creation of too many German refugees? Danzig will almost certainly go to Poland and I think that East Prussia is also highly likely. Upper Silesia and Posen-West Prussia are also possible, but I would think that the Entente might be more wary of giving Poland anything further unless they want to constrict Germany and accept the more maximalist claims of the French and the Dutch.
I look forward to see how these questions will get resolved.
 

Attachments

Last edited:
Now that the end of the war is clearly in sight, several questions now arises about what will happen to Germany in the post-war period? Pdf27 has already said that the Entente has decided not to split Germany up, but other questions still remain open.

  1. I can't recall if pdf27 has already mentioned it, but is it is highly likely that the Free State of Prussia will be abolished, just as it was in the OTL, with its administrative responsibilities devolved to its constituent provinces.
  2. What form of central civil administration will Germany have? Although pdf27 said that Germany will likely have a long military occupation, the Entente will still need to have some form of German civil government in place to carry out the day-to-day administrative burdens. My guess is that the Entente will impose a federal system with a weak central government.
  3. Will there be some tension between the British and French occupation authorities on how they administer their respective zones?
  4. Some mergers of the smaller states and former Prussian provinces is likely, just as in the OTL, to rationalize the administrative tasks (just one look at the complexity of central Germany in that attached map shows that some rationalization will be necessary).
  5. Will the French establish the Saar Protectorate, as in the OTL, or will they push for outright annexation? Will the French make any other territorial demands (i.e., Palatinate, west bank of the Rhine Province)? Under the OTL Morganthau Plan, France would have received the Saar and the adjacent territories bounded by the Rhine and the Moselle rivers.
  6. In the OTL, the Dutch had some extravagant plans to annex German territory at the end of the war, will any of these come into effect iTTL?
  7. And the big question, where will be the eastern border of Germany? Will Poland push its border westward to the Oder-Neisse Line, as in the OTL, or will the Entente be more concerned with the creation of too many German refugees? Danzig will almost certainly go to Poland and I think that East Prussia is also highly likely. Upper Silesia and Posen-West Prussia are also possible, but I would think that the Entente might be more wary of giving Poland anything further unless they want to constrict Germany and accept the more maximalist claims of the French and the Dutch.
I look forward to see how these questions will get resolved.
I think of another few questions can be added.

We know the Polish are getting their OTL slice from Germany, and I think we can all determine that Poland will get East Prussia TTL. Now in OTL it went to the Soviets/ Russians who renamed Konigsberg to Kaliningrad, and I'm wondering if the Poles would do anything similar and if they do what name would they chose?

What, if anything, would Franz von Papen be charged with TTL? As pdf has stated that Conspiracy to wage aggressive war won't be a charge TTL, so Von Papen can't be charged with that. But that doesn't mean there isn't anything else he could be charged with and since the focus is not just on the Nazi's I can see him getting a bit more scrutiny, especially as a link between Prussian Militarism and the Nazi's.

Another thing I'm curious about is if there would be trials of the leaders and members of the terrorist organisation known as the Organisational Consul. They were a terrorist group during the Wiemar Period that was formed for Frikcrops members. Their main crimes were assassinations, including Foreign Minister Walter Rathenau. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organisation_Consul , https://www.dw.com/en/chronicle-of-right-wing-terrorism-in-germany/a-15548477 .
 
I think of another few questions can be added.

We know the Polish are getting their OTL slice from Germany, and I think we can all determine that Poland will get East Prussia TTL. Now in OTL it went to the Soviets/ Russians who named Konigsberg to Kaliningrad, and I'm wondering if the Poles would do anything similar and if they do what name would they chose?
Polish Königsberg is Krolewiec. Lithuanian Königsberg is Karaliaucius.
French Königsberg is Montréal-en-Prusse.
 
It would be interesting to see the Morganthau plan implemented, at least the French Saar annexation and the impact on the formation (or not) of the future EU. Maybe instead of a French-German lead project, it could be a French-British one considering the war that has just been fought.

Resolutely pro-EU Britain would certainly be a change. ;)
 

Orry

Donor
It would be interesting to see the Morganthau plan implemented, at least the French Saar annexation and the impact on the formation (or not) of the future EU. Maybe instead of a French-German lead project, it could be a French-British one considering the war that has just been fought.

Resolutely pro-EU Britain would certainly be a change. ;)
Can the plan be implimented without the mass deaths that it would seem to imply??
 
Top