AHC: Give Brazil a larger role in the World Wars

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by Calbertbreastpeach, Jul 8, 2019.

Tags:
  1. Calbertbreastpeach "The world is not beautiful, therefore it is."

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2016
    Location:
    New New York
    What are some ways after 1900 for the government of Brazil to have a larger role in world war one or two?
     
  2. Guilherme Loureiro Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2004
    Not impossible, but it doesn't depend solely on Brazil, because Brazil itself could not equip and train a large fighting force. And if you send large numbers of untrained and unequipped men to either the Allies or the Entente, it's more likely that they'll use them as garrison soldiers to free (more trained) manpower for fighting than use them as frontline soldiers(Brazil had to exert diplomatic pressure to send a single division to Italy in WWII - the US wanted Brazilian soldiers as garrison in the Caribbean and the Azores, and the UK didn't want to train and equip foreign soldiers out of their own pockets). Joining either/both war(s) before the USA might help, because the Allies/Entente would be more desperate for friendly support, even if they had to train and equip it.
     
    judman, Rath, Rifleman and 2 others like this.
  3. nandalf nandalf

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2005
    Location:
    Recife-Pe-Brazil
    The Imperial navy defeats the Repúblican and army coup,give full support
    to princess Isabel,so it remains being the main service and having a nice chunk
    of the national budget.In WW1 the imperial navy due to it's size,plays an important hope in the war. I don't know which side alternate Brqzilwould go thoigh!
     
    Adamant and Gukpard like this.
  4. rfmcdonald Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2012
    Location:
    Toronto
    In the case of Brazil, although it was a substantial power in Latin America and the South Atlantic that had the potential to become a major power—even a major Western power, in the way that the United States did—it is difficult for me too see how it could do this.

    1. Even though Brazil, particulary southern Brazil, was relatively wealthy, Brazil as a while let was an underdeveloped country, poor and relatively lacking in industry. What POD would let Brazil become an industrial power?

    2. What would Brazil have to gain? Even assuming a Brazil that was as thoroughly and uniformly developed as the great powers of western and central Europe, what would the country have to gain from getting involved in the First World War?
     
  5. GTStinger Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2012
    Can any way be found to get one of Brazil’s neighbors to side with the Central Powers? About the only way I can think to get them in WWI.
     
  6. Cryhavoc101 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Location:
    1123 6536 5321
    Have closer than OTL ties to Portugal



    When the Germans declare war on Portugal - the Portuguese army forms the CEP in 1916 and later on then CEPI (independent Artillery Corps) and this force eventually ends up fighting as part of BEF with its 3 Division Corps responsible for a 'Division' frontage on the Western Front.

    Suffering reverses in Angola and elsewhere in Africa a force of Volunteers from Brazil in Brigade Strength arrives in Angola. Originally intended to free up Portuguese forces for operations in Mozambique - due to ongoing 'police actions' due to German instigated Native unrest the Brazilian Brigade is sent instead and in late 1916 crossed the Rovurna River and began raiding the interior.

    This forced Von Lettow-Vorbeck the German Commander to Break off his attacks into British East Africa and after initially sending a force under Theodor Tafel, whose Column was defeated in a 2 day bloody skirmish outside of Tunduru, he himself concerned that he would be cut off from supplies force marched back to the town and after initially surprising the Brazilian Brigade was unable to defeat it.

    Unaware that the Brazilians were low on supplies Von Lettow-Vorbeck was surprised to learn that they had withdrawn overnight and despite them stealing a march he sought to cut them off before they could reach their Base at Ngomano

    Hoping to catch them in marching order before they crossed the Rovurna, he arrived too late and his attempt to cross after them led to the disastrous Battle of Ngomano where he was attacked with only half his force across the river.

    Indeed a ruse by the Portuguese commander who had placed a mobile column up river and was able to ambush the German commanders attempt to outflank the main force

    Badly wounded from Shell splinters with his force decimated he was forced to retreat in some disorder and having lost so many of his 'White' officers and NCOs as well as many of his elite Askari veterans things looked grim for the German Colonial forces

    Now short of any modern weapon and with only a handful of Machine guns left (with a small amount of ammo) the Brazilian Brigade along with Portuguese colonial forces forced him back into the Heartland of German East Africa while at the same time the British having reorganized themselves in the North following their reverses during the earlier campaign invaded in some considerable strength from British East Africa.

    Caught between both forces and by now very ill from his injuries Von Lettow-Vorbeck dismissed most of his Native soldiers and ordered his remaining officers and NCOs to form small units that would live off the land and form a resistance which they continued to do so for the remainder of the war (with one unit notoriously fighting on into the first months of 1919).

    Despite this resistance the German forces were unable to seriously threaten British and Portuguese holdings and the occupation of German East Africa became a long drawn out 'police action'

    Many of the Surviving Brazilian soldiers volunteered to go to France in early 1918 and it is seen as a tragedy that so many of them would become casualties during the Michael offensive

    On the Western Front additional Brazilian volunteers had by mid 1917 formed 2 Brigades which allowed the initial 6 Portuguese Brigades to spend more time out of the lines (the British Commanders were becoming concerned as the early Portuguese units were spending too long in the field and were becoming increasingly fatigued)

    With the arrival from Africa of the Mozambique Brazilian Brigade a 3rd 'Portuguese' Division was formed and this unit was decimated making a valiant stand at Bapaume on the evening and morning of the 24th March 1918 during the Michael Offensive

    The Brazilian '3rd Mozambique Brazilian Brigade' (who were the leading Brigade of the 3rd Portuguese Division) 1st and 3rd Battalions made a critical counter attack - just as the Germans were entering the town and despite suffering very heavy losses the 3rd Portuguese Division held the town for a vital 24 hours allowing the British 5th Army to disengage and take up superior blocking positions.

    Some historians have likened the action to the battle of Quatre Bras in allowing the British BEF to reposition units that stopped the German assault on Arras - but the Division was shattered losing over 3500 Casualties in 24 hours - principally among the fighting companies of the Infantry Regiments and would play no further part in the Campaign, although the other 2 Divisions would take part in the subsequent Battles around Arras - in both cases replacing worn out British units.

    Following the Campaign only the 2nd Portuguese Division was fit for combat and the Brigades of the 1st and 3rd were reduced to Cadre and during the 100 days this Divisions Brigades were reinforced using men from both Portugal and Brazil and while efforts were made to retain separate battalions ultimately they became mixed by the time of the Armistice.
     
  7. Galba Otho Vitelius Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2016
    World War I -not without a pretty wild pre-1900 POD. Countries outside Europe got involved because they were part of the British Empire, or the USA which was supplanting the British Empire. OK Japan, but that is a rule proving exception because the Japanese involvement is quite limited.

    World War II -Brazil goes fascist and joins the Axis. This puts them at the level of Italy and at the least complicates things for the USA.
     
  8. Gukpard hominem populist

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2015
    Location:
    São Paulo, Brazil.
    1- What screwed up Brazil vehemently was the republican coup of 1889, so the comments above telling that avoiding the coup would help does makes sense, however this is a post 1900 scenario and all attempts to end the old republic before the 1930 revolution failed. The closest we got from removing the oligarchs before that was the 1924 revolution, but that is long after WWI and also higly unlikely to work (to have a idea, Brazil that was the second country to implement a telephone system had devolved in such a backwater that the dictatorship of Arthur Bernardes was able to cut off communications in the country to prevent the revolution from spreading).

    2- Money, just that.In OTL Brazil joined as a gift for the USA, a sign of respect. If Brazil got a good independent government democratic or we stay out of the war. If the empire for some reason is in power then it is a double edged knife, the sucessor of Princess Isabel Pedro de Alcântara was a germanophile, something rare in the royal family. He however resigned OTL from the sucession and the other sucessor Pedro Henrique (the one from kaiserreich) is a francophile like the rest of the house. Brazil might join one of the sides of the war based on this, who knows?

    Now, for WWI there is little that Brazil with a 1900 PoD can do, the country is devastated, the central government is close to non existent being more of a diplomatic base than a real institution and the country is broken into oligarchs ruling their fiefdoms and barely, barely trying to keep up with Mexico and Argentina. For the 2nd world war to Brazil have a larger role you just need to wait. Brazil mobilized one million men but most of them didn't had the time to arrive in Europe. Furthermore Brail was training troops to fight in the pacific too, one air squad even got mobilized and fully equiped to be sent but japan surrendered on the day of the departure. If you get a scenario that the war take one, two, maybe three more years then you will see hundreds of thousands of brazilians arriving in Europe.
     
  9. Gukpard hominem populist

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2015
    Location:
    São Paulo, Brazil.
    It is impossible for a pro axis Brazil to join the axis, you can read more here.
     
    Aloha, Johnrankins and nandalf like this.
  10. naraht Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2010
    And I think it needs to be a neighbor that Brazil is concerned about their power and concerned about their ability to reach populated areas of Brazil. Argentina in the CP gets responded to a *lot* differently than Bolivia or Columbia.
     
    The Undead Martyr likes this.
  11. GTStinger Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2012
    Columbian status report to C-in-C:

    “Advanced additional 100 miles towards Manaus. Divisional strength down to 60%. Yet to encounter Brazilian army forces....”
     
  12. 1Big Rich Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2018
    World War I participation would be difficult, as has been pointed out. With Argentina not taking part, I can't see the Navy sending any ships to support the War in Europe, especially capital ships.

    I might have an avenue for World War II: Several years ago on the NavWeaps Design a Navy/Ship board, I posted a hypothetical about the RN handing the Brazilian Navy ships in 1943-44 as the manpower crunch started to hit the RN. The purpose of that thread was mostly 'what ships should the Brazilians take' if offered a choice. But if we have the RN see the manpower crunch coming in, say mid-late 1942. and Brazil calling up more men than she has ships to utilize them, a training program could be put in place to get the Brazilian Navy ready to take over RN ships passing out of front-line service in '43-44.

    Some examples of major units:

    Malaya - Late '43 she was used as a target, and had her 6in battery removed; in 1944 she became an accommodation ship
    Resolution - October '43 she was placed in reserve
    Dauntless - June '43 she became a training ship
    Durbin - November '43 to reserve
    Ceres - October '43 she was used as a station ship
    Caradoc - April 1944 she was used as a base ship

    In addition, I'd note that when Ramillies was docked at Durban for temporary repairs after being torpedoed by a Japanese midget submarine (30 May 1942), she was inspected by a naval constructor named Pengelly, and he found her to be in exceptionally good condition (26 years old at the time!). It might not be a stretch to have her added to the list of candidates above.

    For light forced, Brazil constructed the three Marcílio Dias class destroyers (based on USN's Mahan class), commissioning them in 1943, and the Havant/Jurua class could be handed back to them. Also, the RN is procuring a lot of corvettes and frigates; some could easily find their way into the Brazilian Navy.

    My initial thoughts,

    Edit- the original thread referenced above:

    https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/warships1discussionboards/off-the-shelf-navy-ii-mid-40s-t5513.html
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2019
    TonyA, Adamant, jprivado and 2 others like this.
  13. Calbertbreastpeach "The world is not beautiful, therefore it is."

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2016
    Location:
    New New York
    Im wondering if there’s a way an earlier act of Nazi aggression would lead to there bigger role if they join sooner
     
  14. Guilherme Loureiro Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2004
    The pro-Empire Brazilian Navy is something of a myth, created by the Navy Revolt. Although there were loyal Navy officers, there were also officers who were pro-Republic(the battleship Aquidabã landed a naval detachment in support of the rebel officers in November 15, 1889, for instance)

    Had WWI been in 1905 or earlier, I'd have agreed that Brazil was devastated, after that, no. As bad as the First Republic system was, it was working as well as it could by 1914. Also, there was a plan in OTL to send large numbers of troops to France in 1918, to be trained and equipped by the French(don't know why it was shelved, just that it was). For WWII, having a longer war would mean more time for Brazil to send troops and units, but it would also mean a(much) bigger chance of the US saying 'screw it' and nuking the remaining Axis powers. An earlier entrance in the war would probably be better.

    The last straw for Brazil was the German/Italian sub campaign in Brazilian shores from May 42 on; you could move this a few months earlier, but I don't see how you could get this any earlier than February 42; earlier than that and it has to be some other act of aggression.
     
  15. Gukpard hominem populist

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2015
    Location:
    São Paulo, Brazil.
    It wasn't. In 1914 there was already a massive pressure building up that exploded in the 1917 general strike. Furthermore the government still was the broken up oligarchy of the old republic so regional governors could simple refuse to send troops to the war if they wanted to.

    A earlier entrance to the war might be possible if there is no 1937 coup and someone pro america *cough* Armando Salles *cough* wins the election, thus he can declare war as soon the Taubaté is sunk in 1941, at the same times this means less concessions for the brazilian entry.
     
  16. Guilherme Loureiro Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2004
    That was the system working as well as it could. Yes, it's a low bar to clear, but the General Strike of 1917 was in no way as bad as the 1890's had been, or the Rio de Janeiro Vaccine Riots of 1904, or even most of the Hermes da Fonseca years(1910-14, for those not versed on Brazilian history), where you had outright fighting between the Brazilian Army and local forces. As for regional governors refusing to send troops, it was possible, yes, but I think that it wouldn't be a problem. São Paulo, Minas Gerais and Rio Grande do Sul would go for it IMO, with a good chance that Bahia would also go for it. With those states, you have most of the state troops available.

    As for an earlier entrance in WWII meaning less concessions for Brazilian joining the Allies, probably yes. I'd say, though, that having more people on the frontlines should be able to get a lot of things in the end, including ones Brazil didn't get.
     
  17. Agra Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2018
    Plan Rubber
     
  18. Johnrankins Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2007
    The most important factor in that is the fact that the Brazilians weren't suicidal idiots. Joining the Axis is like putting up a giant "Invade me" sign up to the US.
     
  19. Gukpard hominem populist

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2015
    Location:
    São Paulo, Brazil.
    Yes, you are right, these three would send them. Maybe we could have 200 thousand people at the european front? But I don't think all of them would be used for combat, the entente probably would put us on auxiliary work and leave the fight for themselves, I don't recall were I readed that but during WWII one of the problems we had is that while the brazilian manpower reserves were massive, due malnurishment only a parcel of that could be trained at the same level of the european soldier, this would be even worse for WWI.

    Edit: The 1917 general strike would ruin the brazilian war effort in the middle of the conflict, that is for granted.

    I don't think it would get more concessions at the end of WWII with a earlier brazilian entry, the USA broke two of the three main promises they made to us, first we ddin't got our permanent seat on the UN security concil, and they also had promissed to buy all our surplus food exports until 1949, but that was also broken with the end of the war.
     
  20. Guilherme Loureiro Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2004
    I am assuming most of them would be used as garrison and auxiliaries, but part of it would find itself in the Western Front meat grinder. I don't think the Portuguese were in a much better situation regarding manpower quality, and they sent 55,000 soldiers to the French frontlines.

    I don't know enough to say it would ruin the war effort, but it would sure be at least a big hindrance. Harsher repression of the strike? I'd say so. Depending on how it ends, Anarchism does not get discredited among factory workers as in OTL.

    The key for more concessions after WWII is a bit more cynical than earlier entry in the war(although it plays a part); it's more men at the frontlines, presence in more frontlines and battles, more casualties. Unfortunately, the only way I can see Brazil getting more than it got is by paying for it in blood, lots of it.
     
    Johnrankins likes this.