A New World Wreathed in Freedom - An Argentine Revolution TL

Thanks, and I'm glad you were able to figure that I'm in South America, I am so used to typing the country named South Africa. :) the funniest thing was that I was bent on keeping from getting Cape Horn and Cape of Good Hope mixed up, so my mind was visualizing one making sure I didn't call it the other and so I just went with the continent name and got that wrong. :)
It's the same reason that Brown crossed the Magellan Strait instead of rounding Cape Horn :coldsweat:
It is amazing what egos can do to a Revolution, I read this and it feels like a miracle that the United States held on like a did. I had known that there was instability in Latin American nations but had no idea it was that bad. That is the great thing about alternate history, you can learn a lot of cool stuff about history also.
The genesis of this TL was a stray thought back around the 210th anniversary of the May Revolution which amounted to "what if I made the Argentine revolution more like the American one - not devoid of egos and infighting, but spared its disastrous consequences?"; in many ways, the success of the American Revolution was somewhat uncharacteristic of revolutionary movements, the Continental Congress survived the entire revolutionary war, and although the Articles of Confederation were a garbage fire of a system, it was fixed without violence.

I admit that it has required me to paper over some issues that even in TTL should have been quite controversial and problematic, such as the fact that about half of the morenist faction was openly Carlotist, and as a result at least theoretically monarchists, but if I ever re-write the TL in the future, I'll try and fit it in better.
And, fighting into the 1940s is incredible.
It was heartbreakingly onesided by that point.
 
OTL was such a seeming Southern Cone screw - at least, such an Argentina screw, with the revolution devolving into a 30 year civil war - that a surprising amount of issues are avoided just by preventing the characters involved from ruining everything with their egos.

The map may actually overstate the extent of settlement, the northwest of the Gran Chaco region is just as sparsely populated and outside of the UP's effective control as the rest of it, but the base map I started working with is a bit generous with those borders. Huge swathes of that region remained uncolonized into the 20th century, with Argentina still essentially waging a war of conquest on the region as late as the 1940s.
Sounds like it'll end much sooner than the 1940s ITTL; BTW, waiting for the next part...
 
Sounds like it'll end much sooner than the 1940s ITTL; BTW, waiting for the next part...
The fate of the natives in the Gran Chaco will be worse but better but worse ITTL: the United Provinces have not one, but multiple provinces with native majorities, and at least one (that I know of) with a native governor. The only way that colonization of the region actually ends "sooner" is by at least partially integrating several of the tribes in the region, but for example the Guaraní are "fully" integrated, as are the Quechua and Aymara that make up the majority of the Alto Peru's population.
 
7 - The Platine War (Part 1)
Chapter 7 - The Platine War (Part 1)

Ejercito Artiguista.png

Artigas would depart Montevideo at the head of a small force built around veterans of his earlier campaigns in August, 1816

Brazilian forces found the Oriental Provinces ripe for invasion: more than half of Artigas’ veterans had been transferred away from the region, most of them bolstering the Army of the North as San Martín continued to prepare it for an invasion of Perú, and the small navy that the United Provinces had assembled was dispersed up and down the Pacific coast of the South America. Although Artigas departed Montevideo with all 3,000 soldiers at his disposal, and hastily-levied militias of ranchers and freedmen would bolster his forces along the way, he was quickly reduced to shadowing the Brazilian march menacingly and forcing them to concentrate their armies by unleashing his cavalry to raid their supply lines.

The Brazilians advanced in three columns: one army would march along the Atlantic Coast under General Lecor, supported by the Luso-Brazilian navy as it stormed the forts along the narrow strip of land that made up the border between the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul and the Platine province of Montevideo; a second army led by General Silveira marched out of Porto Alegre and began marching along the Rio Negro towards the Paraná; while a third army under the command of Major Jardim remained poised in the Misiones Orientales to support either army if necessary and to eventually threaten Posadas and cleave everything east of the Uruguay River off from the rest of the United Provinces.

Despite his best efforts, there was little that Artigas could do in the face of such an implacable enemy: in an effort to take the war to the enemy and force its armies to turn back, Artigas snuck past the Brazilian columns and headed north. But it was not enough: he lacked the men, artillery or ammunition to besiege Porto Alegre, and although his forces managed to score some minor victories against isolated detachments and garrisons on the march, they were mere pinpricks for the Brazilian behemoth, and his incursions failed to slow down their advance: Maldonado would fall by December of 1816, placing the entire Atlantic Coast of Montevideo under Brazilian occupation.

It would also end in disaster: the major part of his forces that had been transferred north was what little experienced infantry he had, while reinforcements to Chile had also stripped the Oriental Provinces of the veterans of the liberation of Montevideo; the hastily-levied militias that he’d gathered en route to the north crumbled in the face of Brazil’s professional army, failing to form up into squares as the enemy cavalry carved through his lines and forced Artigas to retreat[1]. Artigas would subsequently write that his defeat at Carumbé proved to him the superiority of the Brazilian army they faced and the desperate need for reform of Platine infantry.

It was a lesson that other Platine commanders in the region would quickly learn as well: the recently-elected Governor of Misiones, a guaraní by the name Andresito Guazurarí, obtained early successes with his militia composed primarily of native regiments, turning back probing attacks across the Iguazú and the Uruguay, but his efforts to invade Misiones Orientales were hampered by his irregular army’s lack of artillery and shortage of firearms and munitions, and he was forced to withdraw from the region as Brazilian reinforcements threatened to encircle his army as it tried to besiege Rincón unsuccessfully.

Platine forces fared even worse at sea: Brown had made great strides in the formation of a Platine Navy, but he had also been instructed to use that new navy to pursue the war against Perú. When the war with Brazil began, they faced no significant naval resistance, and the Rio de la Plata was once again threatened by corsairs and privateers bearing the flag of its enemies. With the fall of Maldonado, the Brazilian fleet could operate freely throughout the basin, and the United Provinces watched with dismay as the country faced another naval blockade.

The rapid collapse of organized Platine resistance to the invasion was a boon to Brazilian morale and a political catastrophe for Moreno’s government: secure in his post only because the war had started early in the Assembly’s term, Moreno’s popularity would never recover, and as popular opinion and the war turned against him, Mariano Moreno began to withdraw from the public eye. The publication of Artigas’ dire warnings - which would be published across the nation thanks to the support of federalist-leaning newspapers promoted by Funes - would cause irreparable harm to his reputation, and in a tragic end to his stewardship of the revolutionary government, he would ultimately be passed over as delegate by the Cabildo of Buenos Aires in 1818. It would be an ignominious end to a dazzling career, but in light of the scale of the defeats early in the Platine War, his position was untenable.

But as Moreno’s government reeled in the face of Brazil’s invasion in the press, it would nonetheless press on with a military response: San Martin’s invasion plans were put on hold, further deployments and shipments of supplies to the north were redirected to the east, and new regiments were raised and began drilling to reinforce Artigas’ army. Even as Montevideo was placed under siege - just 3 short years after it had been liberated by Artigas - in May of 1817, the United Provinces would muster over 6,000 new troops in Corrientes under the command of another veteran of the Napoleonic Wars, Carlos Maria de Alvear.

More than enough to make up for the losses Artigas had suffered at the Battle of Carumbé, and enough to even overwhelm the spread out Brazilian forces individually, Artigas pleaded with Alvear to cross the river Uruguay quickly and ensure that the Brazilians don’t have time to occupy large swathes of the provinces or combine their forces. But Alvear, who had obtained the commission primarily due to his position as a Napoleonic veteran and his close ties to powerful interests in Buenos Aires, was disdainful of the practical Oriental general; he distrusted him politically and dismissed him militarily, especially in the wake of his defeat early on in the war.

So Alvear waited, in a move that morenist and federalist papers would both hurry to compare with Viamonte’s infamous hesitance in the wake of Castelli’s death: by the time Alver crossed over into Salto in June, Montevideo was surrounded and its hinterland swarming with Brazilian soldiers. To make matters worse, Alvear had reined in the cavalry detachment that had joined his expedition: commanded by Manuel Artigas and dispatched with San Martin’s blessing, they were by far some of the best troops in the province and the best in Alvear’s army by an even wider margin, but Alvear took the appointment of Artigas’ nephew as a personal slight and was determined to sideline his gaucho veterans from the glory - reducing them to rearguard duty, and robbing his own army of valuable scouts and a formidable vanguard.

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The Battle of Rio Negro would be a disaster for the Platine war effort

The consequences would be dire: Alvear’s 6,000 troops would be attacked by a Brazilian detachment half its size on its way to cross the Rio Negro, and by the time the battle was over, half the army had been mauled and the other half forced to retreat in disarray to Salto. If not for the valiant rearguard action of the cavalry, the destruction of the Platine army would have been complete, but the casualties were staggering all the same: 1,800 soldiers lay dead or wounded, Alvear among the fatalities, and the army lost all its baggage and artillery trains.

As the demoralized army limped into Salto, the bad news would pile on: after only a year of fighting, the Brazilian army had managed to successfully roll up the entire Atlantic Coast, seize Maldonado and then Montevideo, bloodied Artigas’ attempt to take the fight to them, and had inflicted a massive blow to Platine morale and manpower by mauling an army led by a prominent and well connected general, and went so far as to threaten Buenos Aires itself with an attempted landing at Ensenada that would fail to capture the port but would scatter the hastily-assembled Platine “fleet” that attempted to stop it[2].

José Artigas feared the worst, especially in the wake of Alvear’s appointment, and began to make arrangements to continue the fight alone. But his nephew, riding out from Salto in a daring mission to contact his uncle, brought with him a secret letter from Mariano Moreno himself addressed for the Oriental liberator. It granted him command over the remnants of Alvear’s army, encouraged him to fight on, and commissioned him with a special mission: Moreno, like Balcarce, had taken to abolitionism enthusiastically, and they instructed Artigas to weaponize it against their enemy - any and all efforts should be made to encourage slave rebellions in Rio Grande do Sul, and the government in La Plata had dispatched caches of weapons and supplies to Andresito’s forces and to Salto for just that aim.

As Lecor settled in to besiege Montevideo and Silveiras pressed on and laid siege to Colonia - which would repulse a frontal assault in September, much to the Brazilian general’s surprise - the entirety of the interior of Montevideo from the Atlantic to the Rio Negro were lost to the United Provinces. But Artigas, whose combined forces now numbered 8,000, and who could count on a further 3,000 guaraní militiamen provided by Andresito, was ready to fight on: his nephew would be dispatched at the head of a flying column of nearly 1,000 cavalrymen, sewing chaos behind enemy lines in Rio Grande do Sul, while Artigas’ forces capitalized on their superior knowledge of the terrain to begin harassing Brazilian patrols in the interior of occupied Montevideo, ambushing isolated patrols and raiding baggage trains and supply depots to rob them of food, ammunition and - most importantly - horses.

But despite these efforts, morale in the United Provinces was crumbling as the Brazilian invasion seemed unstoppable and its blockade sent the economy tumbling. Spirits in the new capital were at an all time low since the revolution had begun in 1810, and some grumbled about how the United Provinces were reaping what Moreno had sewn in his pursuit of turning the country into a revolutionary beacon. Before the end of 1817 however, that beacon would glow just a bit brighter and spirits would finally begin to recover as news reached La Plata of two events that would breathe new life into the war: tensions that had been simmering for years in Pernambuco had finally boiled over into open revolt[3], and much to Balcarce and Moreno’s elation, it would be followed by a slave uprising right behind Brazil’s front lines.

Pernambuco Rebellion 1817.jpg

The Pernambuco Rebellion in late 1817, in conjunction with slave uprisings in Rio Grande, would be the biggest boons to the Platine war effort in a year marked by defeats at land and sea
--
[1] Lifted from OTL’s Battle of Carumbé, including Artigas’ appraisal of the reasons for his army’s defeat at the hands of the Brazilian invaders.
[2] Based on OTL’s battle of Monte Santiago; it’s still a decisive luso-brazilian naval victory, further strengthening their dominance of the seas and allowing them to tighten the blockade on Buenos Aires. The biggest difference is that it’s not the entirety of the Platine fleet, since most of its navy is still in the Pacific, or already operating in the Atlantic without being able to make it back to Buenos Aires.
[3] OTL’s Pernambuco Rebellion was both short-lived and doomed by incompetence and misfortune. But the enlightenment and masonic influences from OTL are much, much stronger ITTL due to their success in the United Provinces, and the rebels are ever so slightly better organized, enough that it doesn’t blow up as soon as it starts.
 
8 - Platine War (Part 2)
This was originally going to be a teaser with Mariano Moreno's infobox, but I completed the update ahead of time and realized as I was about to post the teaser that I'd included a glaring error in the infobox, so early update it is!

Chapter 8 - The Platine War (Part 2)

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Andresito and his guaraní militia were lauded in the revolutionary press and the native governor of Misiones became a romantic figure throughout the country
With the Brazilians firmly entrenched around Colonia and Montevideo, close enough to succor each other if either Lecor or Silveira were attacked and supported by a fleet that scoured the River Plate, Platine forces had very few options at their disposal to fight the invasion: while Colonia and Montevideo continued to resist - spared from assault thanks to the efforts of Platine privateers and corsairs forcing the Brazilian navy to spread out its forces - the south of the Oriental Provinces was the site of bloody guerrilla warfare.

But Major Jardim was forced to turn his attention northward as slaves rose up in revolt, armed with Platine muskets and lances: although militarily irrelevant, the political threat of allowing the slave revolt to spread demanded a response, and Jardim was forced to decamp from his defensive positions in the Misiones Orientales to stamp them out. It presented Platine troops with their best opportunity to counter-attack since the beginning of the war: Andresito’s guaraní militia would once again cross the river Uruguay, but this time they’d bring with them weapons and supplies of their own, and soon the entire province - majority Guaraní like the Misiones Occidentales - rebelled, swelling Andresito’s ranks with thousands more native volunteers.

As Jardim’s forces spread out to try and defeat the rebels quickly, they were left vulnerable to Artigas’ flying column, and the gaucho veterans would score a string of victories in small engagements across Rio Grande. Although it wasn’t enough for the slave rebellion to succeed as armed militias formed by plantation and ranch owners who depended on slavery for their livelihoods would soon join their strength with the Brazilian army to prevent further uprisings on their lands, the efforts bled Jardim’s detachment dry of manpower and supplies, ultimately forcing his army to withdraw to Porto Alegre and abandon the countryside.

Worse for the Brazilian war effort along the River Plate however was the court’s decision to divert nearly a thousand of Lecor’s vital veterans away from the front as the rebellion in Pernambuco began to spread: initial hesitancy to embrace emancipation as the rebels sought recognition and support from the United States gave way to an enthusiastic campaign to recruit slaves into their ranks as Platine ships sailed into the port of Recife with promises of support and recognition for the fledgling revolution. Like the slave uprisings in Rio Grande, this represented an unacceptable threat to the Brazilian economy - as evidenced by the souring of the Pernamubcan revolution’s relations with some of its early supporters among its own planter class - which prompted the order to send the Portuguese regulars to snuff it out.

Now reduced to fewer than 7,000 soldiers in total with Jardim’s forces holed up in Rio Grande and with 1,000 of its best troops sent north to fight a rebellion that, for all its enthusiasm, was too isolated for Platine supplies or support to reach them, the invasion had devolved into a merciless slog: what had initially been pinpricks that Lecor’s invasion could easily brush off soon turned into painful headaches that Lecor was forced to confront, as the Platine army used the horses it captured to augment its cavalry and turned the guerrilla war into a real threat. While the Brazilians continued to dominate the waves, ensuring that the besieging armies couldn’t be cut off from resupply, what began to worry Lecor most of all was the real possibility that his armies would be cut off from retreat if Artigas brought his army to bear and attacked him.

Forced to score a decisive victory to try and bring the United Provinces to the negotiating table, Silveira’s remaining 2,500 soldiers were ordered to lift their siege on Colonia and join forces with Lecor’s 4,000 troops to storm Montevideo. After a week of bloody fighting, which cost Brazil another 1,000 casualties in the assault and filled the harbor with the wrecks of a half dozen ships, Montevideo would finally fall in April of 1818. But the simultaneous lifting of the siege of Colonia and the loosening of the blockade on the estuary to support the attack courted further setbacks for the luso-brazilian invasion: William Brown snuck into the River Plate with a small squadron of ships, and at Juncal would score the only significant naval victory for Platine forces.

While it did little to dent Brazilian naval superiority - which continued to hamper Platine shipping on the high seas and which was batting off the republic’s efforts to attack Brazilian shipping - it represented a significant morale boost for the United Provinces, and most importantly for its war effort, freed the Uruguay and Paraná rivers of raiders, significantly improving the supply situation of Artigas’ army harassing Lecor’s invasion force[1]. As the war’s second anniversary approached on August 1818, the situation had shifted ever so slightly in the United Provinces’ favor on land: with the siege of Colonia lifted, Artigas secured a strong position south of the Rio Negro to continue his attacks on Lecor’s rear, and much to Rio’s frustration, its armies were limited to probing attacks out of Montevideoo while the interior fell to the United Provinces once more.

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The Battle of Juncal did little to alter the balance of power at sea, but helped to alleviate the supply issues of the Platine armies fighting the invasion and was a much-needed boon to Platine morale

Robbed of the horses his cavalry and baggage trains desperately needed, Lecor’s advance ground to a halt: Artigas’ mobile forces wreaked havoc on any detachments sent out to pursue them, and Lecor was forced to encamp in Montevideo for the rest of the year as the attrition of trying to chase the Platine forces down was beginning to threaten the viability of his army as an offensive force. For their part, while Platine guerrilla efforts managed to force Jardim and Lecor to garrison their forces to keep them safe, the cavalry-heavy and artillery-starved armies at Artigas’ disposal remained incapable of threatening the garrisoned armies - and Artigas personally still considered his infantry insufficient for a pitched battle.

As the war dragged on in the field, it scored its most significant casualty in La Plata: Moreno’s failure to secure one of the delegate positions in Buenos Aires in the 1818 elections brought the government of the United Provinces crashing down, and even as its forces began to recover some of the ground lost in the last two years, La Plata was gripped by a severe political crisis. For one, the Federalists would sweep the Littoral and Oriental delegates this time, more than compensating the morenist recovery in the north as the seeming success of the Cuzco rebellion weakened the counter-revolutionary parties in Upper Peru; this meant that as the General Assembly gathered, the two parties were close to parity, and the Federalists would successfully block Juan José Paso’s nomination as Secretary General. Stunned by the upset, especially as Balcarce was handily reelected as Supreme Director (with Artigas on campaign, the Littoral and Oriental delegates backed him unanimously), they would subsequently turn to Manuel Belgrano as a compromise candidate.

Although a morenist, Belgrano enjoyed enough clout of his own that he could portray himself as a successor instead of a placeholder for Moreno, unlike Paso, who just 6 years earlier had proven his bonafides as a Moreno loyalist when he put the powers of the Supreme Director entirely at his disposal. He was also popular among Federalist delegates, as he had spent the early years of the revolution both writing enthusiastically in support of the sorts of land reforms that had secured the Littoral and Oriental provinces for the revolution, even implementing them personally in Corrientes and Entre Rios as attaché to Saavedra’s army in its liberation of Paraguay[2]. Although he maintained several Secretaries from Moreno’s cabinets, chief among them its financial mastermind Juan Larrea, he’d also signal an end to porteño hegemony in the cabinet, especially in his promotion of Monteagudo as chief spokesman of the party in the Assembly.

Further efforts were made to resolve the political crisis through military appointments: Artigas’ commission was increased in rank, and the army under his command was elevated to the same status as San Martin’s; thus, José Artigas was created as Brigadier General of the Army of the East, and several of his close confidantes and allies like Fructuoso River, Manuel Artigas and Juan Antonio Lavalleja were promoted and given commands of their own in the newly-upgraded army. As the war in the north degenerated into a stalemate with its frontline running from Cuzco to the coast, San Martin also dispatched the sapper corps and professionalized grenadiers south; by the end of the 1818, the reinforcements - which compensated their smaller number with years of training at San Martin’s direction - were ready to cross into the Oriental Provinces at last.

The Brazilians were now heavily outnumbered, although they still had the advantage that their Platine enemies were spread out while they had concentrated safely in Montevideo under cover of the Brazilian navy. But the Army of the East would not hesitate: Lecor had dispatched Silveira to interdict Platine efforts to bypass Montevideo and retake Maldonado, and Artigas’ army would take their chance to inflict the most significant defeat against the Brazilian army of the war. Intercepting Silveira’s army north of Montevideo near the Sarandí Creak, recently promoted commander Lavalleja caught the Brazilian army on the march, and the generals faced off with 2,000 soldiers each.

Not only did the Platine infantry fare better in the face of the Brazilian cavalry charge after concerted efforts to train them, the cavalry they faced was much reduced due to the effects of both the regular attrition of war and the success of Artigas’ guerrillas in robbing the Brazilians of their horses. Although able to retreat in good order and hole up in Montevideo with the rest of Lecor’s army, it was a costly defeat for the invaders: of the 2,000 men Silveira arrayed for battle, a quarter of them laid dead or wounded at the end of the day[3]. The Brazilian army had been reduced to just 6,000 soldiers, and while they were of generally superior quality to their Platine counterparts, the gap in quality was closing and the Platine advantage in numbers was growing.

Not even the defeat of the Pernambuco rebellion in November of 1818 could eclipse the news of Silveira’s defeat. With the main Brazilian army trapped in Montevideo, the United Provinces rapidly reconquered the interior of the province: Maldonado was liberated in November of 1818, Rocha a week later, and the border forts on the narrow strip of land leading to the city of Rio Grande were reoccupied by Platine soldiers by the new year. By January of 1819, the war devolved into a stalemate, with Andresito’s forces besieging the last bastion of Brazilian control in the Misiones Orientales at San Borja, Artigas’ army besieging Montevideo, and Jardim’s army trapped in Porto Alegre by roving bands of gauchos and slaves flying the Platine flag.

But Brazil was far from beat: the forces that had been diverted north because of the Pernambuco rebellion were rushing south once more and would be ready to reinforce the invading army soon, and while relatively small, Brazil’s absolute naval superiority meant that they could reinforce Jardim’s army trapped in Porto Alegre as easily as it could reinforce Lecor’s larger and more experienced army in Montevideo. And while the effects of Platine privateering was hurting Rio’s finances, the blockade of the River Plate was even more damaging to La Plata’s. Reluctantly at first, both sides began exchanging feelers for talks, and soon the British would be brought in to mediate an end to the war.

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The Battle of Sarandí was the largest single defeat of a Brazilian army of the war so far, as the Platine Army grew bolder and more willing to attack in strength after years of small-scale skirmishing and hit-and-run attacks
--
[1] ITTL, the order of events has been inverted: IOTL, the Battle of Juncal preceded the Battle of Monte Santiago, the attack on Ensenada from the previous update. ITTL, the Platine flotilla dispersed at Ensenada is a smaller part of the whole navy, while the battle of Juncal - which, as the update makes clear, still doesn’t actually affect Brazilian naval superiority - is relevant primarily as a morale boost and due to the improvement of the supply situation for Platine forces along the Uruguay and Paraná rivers.
[2] This is a bit of a retcon; as the Castelli-Viamonte structure showed, there was at least an attempt at politically balancing the military appointments, and I think it’s likely that Belgrano would have played a similar role to Viamonte (but inverting the partisan lean) in Saavedra’s army. IOTL, Belgrano lead the invasion rather than Saavedra, but ITTL, he’s attached but subordinate to the President of the Junta. The reforms in the Littoral provinces are from OTL.
[3] Based on OTL’s Battle of Sarandí from the Cisplatine War.
 
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So, the war seems to be leading to an conclusion more or less similar as OTL and so would appear, so 'inconclusive' as OTL, too...
 
So, the war seems to be leading to an conclusion more or less similar as OTL and so would appear, so 'inconclusive' as OTL, too...
Indeed, given the respective strengths of the belligerents - proximity to its base of support for the UP, overwhelming naval superiority for Brazil - end up cancelling each other out. At this point, it would be too expensive for either side to significantly alter the situation on the ground, and both are facing domestic pressures to end the war. The blockade is hurting the UP budget even if it's in better shape economically than IOTL; Brazil's economy isn't hurting as much from Platine privateering, but the slave revolts are a political problem that they can't ignore for long and the ongoing war is only making things harder.
#somostodasandresito
Andresito has been the best part of researching the wars that have gone into these updates. I find that he represents in a pretty interesting way what I think was the genuine promise of the May Revolution, a truly radical break with the colonial order that suddenly made natives, freed slaves and mestizos legally equal. I'm not going to pretend it's suddenly no longer a European post-colonial state with all the horrors that entails for the natives, especially those they aren't forming revolutionary ties with, but it represents an egalitarianism that is years ahead of its time.

Thoughts and comments so far? I can't help but be self-conscious about the fact that it is coming off as a wank, but I hope that it remains plausible within the confines of a wank. I also hope that the political tangents are as fun to read as they are for me to write!
 
First, I think that TTL could be considered, as well, as somewhat of a Paraguay 'wank', too...Or at very least as the opportunity to avoid the OTL screw... Second, that if well, as was noted, the consequences, for the natives, of TTL (for the age's) very radical land reform/greatly increased access to the land ownerships... Though even if it would affect to the native communities/tribes and would lead to conflicts with them in many regions of the UP... Though, I think that would be possible that those that would be beyond the UP borders, both internal as external, and even letting aside the natives resistance, I think, that by geoclimatic and economic causes but mainly by the age's rural production system... Would seems possible that the advance/colonization and land reclaiming process could be more slower than what could be expected in TTL contexts...

Also, would seems that the war goals of the Portuguese and/or their reason for starting the war not seems consistent with their focus in the Oriental province...
Because, even if the Empire attempt of invasion and conquest would have been even more successful, ITTL, the war wouldn't be over nor they would have achieved that their conquests 'd be 'aceptated/acknowledged' by the UP, at least, until they would be able to impose as some kind of 'fait accomply' to the UP...
So, would seem that aside to understiming their enemies resistance so as their capacity to continue would recurr to fighting in a non conventional way, that the emperor and his councilers would have committed a political and military error.
Given that seems that they would have been so confident in their military superiority, that seems that &d have expected that after the first defeats and the naval blockade, could have been followed by the political collapse of the new UP confederation... Collapse that would have allowed to the Empire to impose their terms... But now, aside from have loss lots of experienced officers and thousands of soldiers, the Empire, except for Mdeo., have had lost all of their conquests and what would be made it worse would be that aside of the slave rebellion with all the harmful for a slaver economy. That's the war now it's been fought and so would seems that could be continuing to be done so, in the near future, in Rio Grande...
Also, I think that even if the war economic impact and consequences for both the Oriental and the rest of the UP, couldn't be understimed, neither could be for the Empire. Cause, as was already stated, aside of those that would be derived from the war and the combats itself only the slaves rebellion worsened (from the elaborate perspective) by the presence of thousands of soldiers (enemies and owns,alike) flighting there could have damaged the imperial/Riograndense economy but especially to the slave dependent slavecrat oligarchs financial stability.

Also, oe suggested future peace agreement, that's supposedly would be derived from the 'traditional thesis/explanation' that's it's based from OTL situation, of the military side, near tables situation.... That, both in OTL& TTL it's being extrapolated from the assumed inability from the UP army to be able to get more victories it even to resist/face to the numerical superiority of the on process to be redeployed to the south, imperial Armies...
Plus, what seem as once more assumed as near cripling economical damage that, even if particularly to the transatlantic commercial oligarchy, would be causing the Imperial naval blockade to Bs As... Same that with the 'tables' situation on the military side, seems that should have forced, near as IOTL , to the UP political leadersahip to accept as, was already mentioned, what would be rather unsatisfying Peace armistice/treaty. One that (imo) wouldn't be addressing to nothing of the subyacent and still persistent causes of this war...

Finally, I think that should be taken into account that even if the blockade it's damaging to the UP economy that ITTL it would have the advantage aside of the UP political stability, that the colonial age economy and the 'commercial circuits' that connected and integrated the Upper Peru with the rest of the former Virreinato weren't severed as in OTL...
I think that should be taken into account that in TTL, at difference to OTL, the exand from my perspective, political will and even more important, of besidrs of a very different military leadership to OTL that I think that would existing certain consence among the UP leadership and population that if it 'd be considered necessary, to continue fighting...
 
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This is a great comment, and worth replying to with great care! It'll cover things that will make it into the next update, but the next update is still on the drawing board precisely as I've been wrangling some of these very issues, so thinking "out loud" about it will be helpful in that regard.
First, I think that TTL could be considered, as well, as somewhat of a Paraguay 'wank', too...Or at very least as the opportunity to avoid the OTL screw... Second, that if well, as was noted, the consequences, for the natives, of TTL (for the age's) very radical land reform/greatly increased access to the land ownerships... Though even if it would affect to the native communities/tribes and would lead to conflicts with them in many regions of the UP... Though, I think that would be possible that those that would be beyond the UP borders, both internal as external, and even letting aside the natives resistance, I think, that by geoclimatic and economic causes but mainly by the age's rural production system... Would seems possible that the advance/colonization and land reclaiming process could be more slower than what could be expected in TTL contexts...
I agree with this sentiment, and admit that some of my self-consciousness about the wankiness is simply due to the fact that I'm writing what amounts to fanfic about a revolution that started a few blocks from my house, heh.

I think land reform, like the kind that we've seen ITTL, is going to radically alter the way the state interacts with its frontier: to say that it'll resemble American homesteading and western expansion isn't quite right, I do think that it makes some conflicts unavoidable. While openness to integration - which Lenwe has mentioned was also more common among Chilean revolutionaries, before the prolonged civil wars left a lot of bad blood and animosity towards the Mapuche - can alleviate some of the tensions, I'm operating off the assumption that, in Chaco at least, the pre-existing tensions between integrated and non-integrated tribes will drive a lot of the fighting (the Guaraní have been trying to settle the Chaco since before the Spanish arrived). And the advance of the frontier in Chaco will be slightly faster, simply by virtue of the fact that the UP are colonizing it from three directions simultaneously: descending from the Upper Peru or going up from Paraguay along the Bermejo and going up the Paraná and Salado rivers from the south.

But Patagonia will be completely different ITTL: the pace of settlement in the south will be much slower, the settlers that do go are more heterogeneous and some are as likely to join the natives to raid north as they are to recruit natives to defend against raiding from the south, and at least on the Atlantic side of the region, Platine settlement is probably going to concentrate on the coast and spread inland slowly (if at all). I wouldn't rule out an independent Patagonian state, nor would I rule out a larger Chilean presence in the south.
Also, would seems that the war goals of the Portuguese and/or their reason for starting the war not seems consistent with their focus in the Oriental province...
Because, even if the Empire attempt of invasion and conquest would have been even more successful, ITTL, the war wouldn't be over nor they would have achieved that their conquests 'd be 'aceptated/acknowledged' by the UP, at least, until they would be able to impose as some kind of 'fait accomply' to the UP...
So, would seem that aside to understiming their enemies resistance so as their capacity to continue would recurr to fighting in a non conventional way, that the emperor and his councilers would have committed a political and military error.
I think that the fait accompli that they hoped to present the UP was a Brazilian army garrisoned at Montevideo and Colonia with another one marching down the Paraná, which they nearly managed to do in 1811-12, with the understanding this time that they could scoff at any British demands to abandon their conquests with no compensation (which I can't stress enough blows my mind actually happened IOTL). I think they'd be overconfident, both with the UP's forces concentrated about as far from the eventual theater of war as is physically possible while being in the same country and with the advantage of having probably the best infantry in the region outside of the Spanish invaders reconquering Colombia.

But as you say, I think they underestimated their enemy's willingness to fight on, and its ability to use non-conventional ways to pursue its war goals. It was supposed to be a leisurely stroll to conquest and not an endless march from ambush to ambush.
Given that seems that they would have been so confident in their military superiority, that seems that &d have expected that after the first defeats and the naval blockade, could have been followed by the political collapse of the new UP confederation... Collapse that would have allowed to the Empire to impose their terms... But now, aside from have loss lots of experienced officers and thousands of soldiers, the Empire, except for Mdeo., have had lost all of their conquests and what would be made it worse would be that aside of the slave rebellion with all the harmful for a slaver economy. That's the war now it's been fought and so would seems that could be continuing to be done so, in the near future, in Rio Grande...
Also, I think that even if the war economic impact and consequences for both the Oriental and the rest of the UP, couldn't be understimed, neither could be for the Empire. Cause, as was already stated, aside of those that would be derived from the war and the combats itself only the slaves rebellion worsened (from the elaborate perspective) by the presence of thousands of soldiers (enemies and owns,alike) flighting there could have damaged the imperial/Riograndense economy but especially to the slave dependent slavecrat oligarchs financial stability.
One of the unintended consequences of the war is that Brazil's south, refractory and cantankerous IOTL, is going to turn much sooner to Rio: the war is costing them a fortune in terms of money, slaves are leaving or dying in droves and the only thing keeping the little "peace" there is in the region is the army flying the royal banner. The fact that a lot of the Platine forces currently ravaging on the Brazilian side of the border is as far from "respectable" as can be - a massive Guaraní militia here, a roving band of gauchos there, and everywhere in between slaves following under the same banner - adds insult to injury. This war won't just hurt the slavers' bottom line, it'll offend them.
Also, oe suggested future peace agreement, that's supposedly would be derived from the 'traditional thesis/explanation' that's it's based from OTL situation, of the military side, near tables situation.... That, both in OTL& TTL it's being extrapolated from the assumed inability from the UP army to be able to get more victories it even to resist/face to the numerical superiority of the on process to be redeployed to the south, imperial Armies...
Plus, what seem as once more assumed as near cripling economical damage that, even if particularly to the transatlantic commercial oligarchy, would be causing the Imperial naval blockade to Bs As... Same that with the 'tables' situation on the military side, seems that should have forced, near as IOTL , to the UP political leadersahip to accept as, was already mentioned, what would be rather unsatisfying Peace armistice/treaty. One that (imo) wouldn't be addressing to nothing of the subyacent and still persistent causes of this war...
Finally, I think that should be taken into account that even if the blockade it's damaging to the UP economy that ITTL it would have the advantage aside of the UP political stability, that the colonial age economy and the 'commercial circuits' that connected and integrated the Upper Peru with the rest of the former Virreinato weren't severed as in OTL...
I think that should be taken into account that in TTL, at difference to OTL, the exand from my perspective, political will and even more important, of besidrs of a very different military leadership to OTL that I think that would existing certain consence among the UP leadership and population that if it 'd be considered necessary, to continue fighting...
And here we arrive at what's delayed the upcoming update: the UP's finances are hurting, but its economy is handling the war in general a bit better. Customs duties make up a significant portion of the government's tax revenue, but one of the benefits of the changes early in the war - namely, the fact that the Upper Peru never falls to the royalists, and so the royalists never make it into the lower provinces like Jujuy, Salta and Tucuman - is that the internal flow of goods between Potosí and Buenos Aires isn't disrupted to nearly the same extent. IOTL, a serious but "understated" casualty of the war was the colony's mule population at Salta, which crippled internal traffic and even the short-term supply situation of the revolutionary armies; ITTL, that never happens, so domestic trade has continued to flow relatively unperturbed even as war raged on the borders. This has been reinforced by internal improvements along similar lines to those implemented by the High Federalists in the US, which obviously haven't had enough time to make huge improvements, but do complement things like the still-extant trade networks and avoiding the massive loss of mules in the war.

At the moment, there are two main things going through my mind: the war as I've written it is stalemated, but I think neither side will find the proposals coming out of early mediation palatable. For Brazil, the idea of restoring the status quo ante bellum with its army firmly entrenched in Montevideo, nothing to fear on the seas, and no army capable of actually dislodging Lecor or Jardim - and with reinforcements on the way - feels like a defeat, and a certain amount of sunk cost fallacy may creep in as they weigh the proposals against the thousands of lives lost. For the United Provinces on the other hand, with their enemy trapped and besieged and with a region they've long claimed - Misiones Orientales - all but conquered, status quo ante bellum is likewise going to feel like too little for the blood and sweat that's gone into the war; even worse for Brazil, tumbling a government on its last legs that was obsessively focused elsewhere to bring about a new government more beholden to the very same people on the receiving end of the invasion and more personally invested in persevering has backfired a bit.

So what I think will happen - what I'm leaning towards writing ATM - is that despite tentative talks starting in 1819, the war would still continue for at least a year as both try to deliver the "final" blow that'll "secure" them the win.
 
Mini-update - Map in Early 1819
So in light of the delay on the upcoming debate, I'll go ahead and post a map showing the situation on the ground in early 1819 when the first feelers are sent out. It includes a retcon, with the city of Posadas renamed as Candelaria, since the name Posadas was given OTL after the POD, as well as a graphical representation of the "frontline from Cuzco to the coast" in Perú. I've also added Porto Alegre, Rio Grande and San Borja to make following the war easier, and I'll also have to apologize to Xenophonte because I haven't gotten around to retconning the borders of the Oriental Provinces yet, even though I should because the division of Uruguay would have been an unacceptable imposition; it would mean one fewer Littoral delegate, so not a big change all things considered. EDIT: Never mind, went ahead and did it.

The war in the North is going "better", but it's slow going in general, with San Martin still stuck in Upper Peru continuing to train his forces and keeping them busy with the occasional sally led by Güemes' cavalry (much reduced due to the contingent sent south under Manuel Artigas) to perk up the Cuzco rebels and prevent Lima from concentrating forces to attack.

Lima is reeling a bit from all of this, which would also help to explain why Brazil was so overconfident: the United Provinces were dedicating as many of its resources as it could to the war against Perú, with some regiments - like the expeditionary forces led by las Heras in Chile - heading north even as the war was starting in the east. To further take advantage of this mini-update to fill in the gaps from the rest of the region: Chile, as IOTL, has dedicated the time since it secured its independence to build up its navy, which is about to get its baptism of fire in the fall of the Chiloe archipelago in the south before being unleashed on the remnants of the viceroyalty. The independence wars in New Grenada have continued AOTL as well. Finally, I've changed the color of the Cuzco rebels to better differentiate them from the United Provinces, since the color used previously was too similar to the color I've been using for the UP, and despite their fraternal ties, they have no intention of trading one yolk for another.

Labeled 1819.png
 
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So in light of the delay on the upcoming debate, I'll go ahead and post a map showing the situation on the ground in early 1819 when the first feelers are sent out. It includes a retcon, with the city of Posadas renamed as Candelaria, since the name Posadas was given OTL after the POD, as well as a graphical representation of the "frontline from Cuzco to the coast" in Perú. I've also added Porto Alegre, Rio Grande and San Borja to make following the war easier, and I'll also have to apologize to Xenophonte because I haven't gotten around to retconning the borders of the Oriental Provinces yet, even though I should because the division of Uruguay would have been an unacceptable imposition; it would mean one fewer Littoral delegate, so not a big change all things considered. EDIT: Never mind, went ahead and did it.

The war in the North is going "better", but it's slow going in general, with San Martin still stuck in Upper Peru continuing to train his forces and keeping them busy with the occasional sally led by Güemes' cavalry (much reduced due to the contingent sent south under Manuel Artigas) to perk up the Cuzco rebels and prevent Lima from concentrating forces to attack.

Lima is reeling a bit from all of this, which would also help to explain why Brazil was so overconfident: the United Provinces were dedicating as many of its resources as it could to the war against Perú, with some regiments - like the expeditionary forces led by las Heras in Chile - heading north even as the war was starting in the east. To further take advantage of this mini-update to fill in the gaps from the rest of the region: Chile, as IOTL, has dedicated the time since it secured its independence to build up its navy, which is about to get its baptism of fire in the fall of the Chiloe archipelago in the south before being unleashed on the remnants of the viceroyalty. The independence wars in New Grenada have continued AOTL as well. Finally, I've changed the color of the Cuzco rebels to better differentiate them from the United Provinces, since the color used previously was too similar to the color I've been using for the UP, and despite their fraternal ties, they have no intention of trading one yolk for another.

Beautiful stuff.
 
Well done, also watched.

Finally, I've changed the color of the Cuzco rebels to better differentiate them from the United Provinces, since the color used previously was too similar to the color I've been using for the UP, and despite their fraternal ties, they have no intention of trading one yolk for another.
I had to laugh a bit here because it made me think of the UP other OTL name, the United Provinces of South America, and it made me think, did someone other than Bolivar really want to federate all of South America into one super-state? If it weren't impossible I'd believe it.
 
So in light of the delay on the upcoming debate, I'll go ahead and post a map showing the situation on the ground in early 1819 when the first feelers are sent out. It includes a retcon, with the city of Posadas renamed as Candelaria, since the name Posadas was given OTL after the POD, as well as a graphical representation of the "frontline from Cuzco to the coast" in Perú. I've also added Porto Alegre, Rio Grande and San Borja to make following the war easier, and I'll also have to apologize to Xenophonte because I haven't gotten around to retconning the borders of the Oriental Provinces yet, even though I should because the division of Uruguay would have been an unacceptable imposition; it would mean one fewer Littoral delegate, so not a big change all things considered. EDIT: Never mind, went ahead and did it.

The war in the North is going "better", but it's slow going in general, with San Martin still stuck in Upper Peru continuing to train his forces and keeping them busy with the occasional sally led by Güemes' cavalry (much reduced due to the contingent sent south under Manuel Artigas) to perk up the Cuzco rebels and prevent Lima from concentrating forces to attack.

Lima is reeling a bit from all of this, which would also help to explain why Brazil was so overconfident: the United Provinces were dedicating as many of its resources as it could to the war against Perú, with some regiments - like the expeditionary forces led by las Heras in Chile - heading north even as the war was starting in the east. To further take advantage of this mini-update to fill in the gaps from the rest of the region: Chile, as IOTL, has dedicated the time since it secured its independence to build up its navy, which is about to get its baptism of fire in the fall of the Chiloe archipelago in the south before being unleashed on the remnants of the viceroyalty. The independence wars in New Grenada have continued AOTL as well. Finally, I've changed the color of the Cuzco rebels to better differentiate them from the United Provinces, since the color used previously was too similar to the color I've been using for the UP, and despite their fraternal ties, they have no intention of trading one yolk for another.

Also, post this to the map thread, would be good publicity to your tl.
 
About the naval war and both fleets, I remember a quote that I think could be useful for getting a more or less accurate assessment about them, in OTL,... The quote that I think was from an English diplomat in Rio, which stated, referring to the OTL naval side of the Cisplatne war, that it "was a war fought between Englishmen in English ships"
Though it was a bit oversimplified, the quote gave a correct description of the situation of both navies., but even if it (the dependency to English/Irish sailors/crews) was caused by different causes.
Also, IOTL and in a bigger or lesser degree both navies shared the troubles (i.e. that were prone to mutinied/ desert) that was implied in their dependency to these 'mercenaries' crews.
 
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Beautiful stuff.
Also, post this to the map thread, would be good publicity to your tl.
Thank you, I'm going to take you up on that! That and the AH Wikibox thread, great suggestion.
Well done, also watched.
Thank you, and welcome!
I had to laugh a bit here because it made me think of the UP other OTL name, the United Provinces of South America, and it made me think, did someone other than Bolivar really want to federate all of South America into one super-state? If it weren't impossible I'd believe it.
AFAICT, the idea of the UPSA (and another contemporary example, the USCA) drew inspiration from the United Provinces of the River Plate and the United States of America, but the latter two were more "organic" successors to their pre-independence colonial structures; the United Province of South America always struck me as a wildly utopian project, considering the failure of its far more humble central american equivalent and its most immediate precursor, the United Provinces of New Grenada. That said, they are unrelated: the United Provinces of the River Plate billed itself as the immediate successor of the Viceroyalty by the same name, and did not - from what I can tell - have any territorial ambitions beyond the borders of the viceroyalty.
Great map!
Thank you! And I admit that as aesthetic as I found the border on the Rio Negro, there's something very appealing in seeing THICC Uruguay.
About the naval war and both fleets, I remember a quote that I think could be useful for getting a more or less accurate assessment about them, in OTL,... The quote that I think was from an English diplomat in Rio, which stated, referring to the OTL naval side of the Cisplatne war, that it "was a war fought between Englishmen in English ships"
Though it was a bit oversimplified, the quote gave a correct description of the situation of both navies., but even if it (the dependency to English/Irish sailors/crews) was caused by different causes.
Also, IOTL and in a bigger or lesser degree both navies shared the troubles (i.e. that were prone to mutinied/ desert) that was implied in their dependency to these 'mercenaries' crews.
At the moment, Brazil's biggest advantage is that it can count on the combined fleet of the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algavres, whereas the United Provinces are having to build a navy from scratch since they can't even count on an inherited fleet from the viceroyalty. But that's only going to last so long, and as Chile proved in the Pacific, you can build a fleet relatively quickly when you set your country to it; the US also proved this earlier in its history (and partially contemporaneous with this TL, since the War of 1812 was a pretty significant event in American naval history) but the US also had a pre-existing network of shipyards to draw upon. AFAICT, no such pre-existing shipbuilding infrastructure existed in the southern cone.
 
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