Could Germany in WWI have possibly won with the Schlieffen Plan?

I'll just throw forward some ideas here:

- No gap in the German lines at Marne?
- Belgium allows German troops through?
- Germany being more prepared for war?

Yes, I know that the Schlieffen Plan was completely messed up, but could Germany have won with it? If it did, what would the resulting end-war treaty be like, and what impact would it have on the world?

(Once I read a book describing an alternate history in which Germany won WWI with the Schlieffen Plan. How exactly isn't quite described, other than "it goes really well," but the impact on world history is intriguing. No WWII, decolonization, etc. so this was just something I was thinking about).
 
Not really as the “Schlieffen Plan” wasn’t actually a thing. It wasn’t a true mobilisation or operations plan but more of a thought exercise for the planning officers at the General Staff. There wasn’t the rail lines or geography to allow for the movement of ‘troops required’ by the “plan”. It was more of a case of “once we’ve arrived at...” with no explanation of how the arrival was to be achieved.
 
Briefly, by rights the SP shouldn't have stood a chance - but the French Plan was so crackbrained as to give the SP a better chance than it deserved.

In the Battles of the Frontiers they had an opportunity to destroy V Army and the BEF with it. Had they managed this, they are maybe in with a chance to win (at least in the west ) "before the autumn leaves fall".
 
The Germans didn't actually attack with the Schlieffen plan, they attacked with Moltke's amended version which had a weaker right hook.
 

33k7

Gone Fishin'
if Britain had delayed a few weeks the Germans would have taken Paris doesn't matter how many taxi drivers were ferrying French soldiers to the front if it had just been a war between Austria-Hungary and Germany vs Serbia Russia and France the Central Powers would have won
 
If the Belgians let the Germans through then it's possible Britain doesn't join the war. So the Germans get through Belgium faster (and with no casualties) and don't have the BEF to deal with. So yeah, maybe it could have worked and Paris would have fallen.
 
Yes, the French 5th Army and the BEF were nearly encircled multiple times in the last half of August. Had that occurred, even if Paris itself doesn't fall, the cutting off of the Bethune Coal Mines and the Channel ports would've forced both Britain and France to the peace table.
 
The Germans didn't actually attack with the Schlieffen plan, they attacked with Moltke's amended version which had a weaker right hook.
It was more than the right wing that was modified. This “weak right hook” is a revisionist trope first trotted out in the late twenties and then seriously in the forties to explain away the defeat of Germany in WWI. “Ill thought out plans and unprepared for a two-front war that our own cack-handed diplomacy had made almost a certainty for over a decade before the war? Not us! It was all the fault of a single officer who was never challenged over the plans at the time, obviously!

if Britain had delayed a few weeks the Germans would have taken Paris
Would the French not have deployed differently if there were no BEF to shore up their line?
 

33k7

Gone Fishin'
Would the French not have deployed differently if there were no BEF to shore up their line?
no they would have had to spread their line even thinner in a last-ditch effort to defend Paris from Germany otherwise they would have had a fight inside of Paris which would just become a Siege of Paris part 2 reading the newspaper articles from the time and some of the Diary entries of soldiers on the front line it was do or die there was no other option
and that was with British support just think how terrified these people would be without it.
 
Briefly, by rights the SP shouldn't have stood a chance - but the French Plan was so crackbrained as to give the SP a better chance than it deserved.

In the Battles of the Frontiers they had an opportunity to destroy V Army and the BEF with it. Had they managed this, they are maybe in with a chance to win (at least in the west ) "before the autumn leaves fall".
If the BEF is destroyed, then even if they fail to take Paris it's still likely decisive because the Germans can very likely overwhelm everything North of the Somme. Without Bethune Coal, French war production will collapse and the UK would have to evacuate a third of Southeastern England due to German control of the Channel approaches.
 
Of course

Anything else denigrates the massive effort to stop them

I hate revisionism which says because a massive effort stopped something then it was doomed to fail

Is this an alternate history forum or not, FFS?
 
Moltkes plan was the only pre WW1 plan that offered any chance of success and the only plan plan that as enacted that achieved any lasting significance. The French and Austrian plans failed utterly, the Russian plan had maybe 30-40% success that was overturned in 1915 but the failed German plan allowed them to drive the agenda of the entire war and defeat Russia by 1918.

That isn't to say that the whole over by Christmas idea is possible, careful analysis of the concept shows it wasn't seriously considered. What it does is put Germany in the position to win the long alliance war by giving them the tactical defensive and strategic offensive, which is the strongest form of warfare
 
no they would have had to spread their line even thinner in a last-ditch effort to defend Paris from Germany otherwise they would have had a fight inside of Paris which would just become a Siege of Paris part 2 reading the newspaper articles from the time and some of the Diary entries of soldiers on the front line it was do or die there was no other option
and that was with British support just think how terrified these people would be without it.
Wouldn’t they concentrate to keep the Germans away from Paris? OTL they launched the Battle of the Frontiers which ultimately was a waste of men and materiel - could the “Army of the Alsace” and other such units be deployed further north?
 
To begin with, the "Schlieffen Plan" was probably more Alfred von Schlieffen's elaborate way of saying, "I need more divisions, here's why."
 
I suggest you read some of Zuber's works on the subject. You may not agree with his assertions & conclusions (I don't with most), but it does make you question some of the "established facts".
 

33k7

Gone Fishin'
Wouldn’t they concentrate to keep the Germans away from Paris? OTL they launched the Battle of the Frontiers which ultimately was a waste of men and materiel - could the “Army of the Alsace” and other such units be deployed further north?
the French didn't have the resources to pull off a successful counter-attack by September they did not have the initiative on their side you fail to realize how instrumental those six British divisions were in keeping the Germans preoccupied without the British divisions there the French have to stand and fight General Karl von Bülow isn't chasing British divisions and Paris is within sight he will go for the jugular

General moltke was an idiot compared to Moltke the Elder he was 500 miles away from the front writing to his wife about how will he be able to confront God with all the people he has killed just think if there was at least a competent General in charge of the Western Front at this key moment. if you remove those 6 British divisions due to delayed reaction from Britain I just can't see the French pulling it off
 
Of course

Anything else denigrates the massive effort to stop them

I hate revisionism which says because a massive effort stopped something then it was doomed to fail

Is this an alternate history forum or not, FFS?
Tell me all about it.

If Joffre (and Foch four yeardslater) could read some of the stuff on this forum,, it would leave them wondering why they bothered to do all that fighting when the Boche would have run out of steam anyway. I'd expect some very sarcastic remarks.

I prefer the honesty of that Confederate general who, when asked why they had lost at Gettysburg, said "I think the Yankees had something to do with it."
 
the French didn't have the resources to pull off a successful counter-attack by September
Im not talking about a counterattack against the OTL attacks.

they did not have the initiative on their side you fail to realize how instrumental those six British divisions were in keeping the Germans preoccupied without the British divisions there the French have to stand and fight General Karl von Bülow isn't chasing British divisions and Paris is within sight he will go for the jugular
You fail to realise I’m taking about an ATL deployment of troops. Not reacting to the OTL deployment and simply leaving a gap where the BEF would have been.

If you remove those 6 British divisions due to delayed reaction from Britain I just can't see the French pulling it off
OTL yes, but I’m talking about an ATL situation.
 
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