Hi, I've finished much of my Timeline, Dead By Dawn, and it can be discussed here. The Rise of National Socialism[/SIZE] Arguably, the first step on the road to the German Revolution, was the failure of the Beer Hall Putsch. Although it often believed to have begun in September of 1919, when a young Corporal in the Reichswehr by the name of Adolph Hitler, was ordered by his superior to spy on the German Workers Party. The German Workers Party was a nationalist party with strong Pan-German overtones formed by a small radical group. When the young Hitler was sent to spy, the leader of the small party, Anton Drexler, was impressed by his oratory skills and invited the young soldier to join the party. After considering the offer, Hitler joined the small political party and quit the Reichswehr. The small political group was soon won over to Hitler's own political ideals and was renamed the German National Socialist Workers Party to gain a wider audience. Using Hitler's oratory skills as its center stage, the party grew rapidly. Hitler and as a result the NSDAP, soon gained prominence amongst Bavarian right wing movements. Soon Hitler gained control of the party, usurping control from Drexler, and proceeded to layout his platform. A Greater Germany, Eastern Expansion, abrogation of the Versailles Treaty and most prominently the expulsion of German Jews from citizenship. In 1921, Hitler organized the creation of the Strurmabteilung (SA), a corps of shock troopers designed as the military arm of the National Socialist Revolution. It became clear that the purpose of National Socialism was the violent overthrow of the Weimar Republic. By September of 1923, bolstered by the success of Mussolini's March on Rome, Hitler decided the time to strike was imminent. He formed the Kampfbund, a coalition of right wing movements, the largest of which was the NSDAP, but it also included the Reichskriegflagge Society and the Oberland League, both comprised of disgruntled war veterans. Hitler at the time of the Putsch had up to 15,000 soldiers to call upon for his his planned grab at power. Originally, Hitler had planned to utilize the state of Bavaria's Prime Minister, Gustav Ritter von Kahr, to march on Berlin. However, when it became clear that von Kahr had no plans to go through with the plot, Hitler decided to take action. On November 8th, 1923, after months of planning, 600 surrounded the Beer Hall where von Kahr was speaking and Hitler famously declared "The national revolution has broken out! The hall is filled with six hundred men. Nobody is allowed to leave. The Bavarian government and the government at Berlin are deposed. A new government will be formed at once. The barracks of the Reichswehr and those of the police are occupied. Both have rallied to the swastika." From that point, the so called Putsch went down hill. Von Kahr and his cohorts refused to play along with Hitlers coup, even when faced with the support of General Ludendorff, a national icon. By the new day, had become apparent that the Putsch had failed to meet its goals. It was temporarily saved when Ludendorff exclaimed "We shall march!" loudly. As a result about 2,000 men aimlessly left the Beer Hall for the Bavarian Defense Ministry, lead by General Ludendorff. The key moment in the planned coup came when they reached the Odeonsplatz in front of the Felddernhhalle where the force met with 100 state soldiers. The two groups exchanged fire and when it was over, 4 state officials and 16 Nazi's, including Adolph Hitler, were dead. The day would end with the Putsch unsuccessful and its main conspirators arrested. The NSDAP was banned and its headquarters raided, and its main leaders were sentenced to fortress prison, an honorable punishment for people who had committed crimes that the state felt was for a good cause, if not in the wrong place. The most prominently sentenced was Rudolf Hess, Hitler's second in command and de facto leader of the Party upon his death. Butterflies of the Orient About two weeks after a small, seemingly unimportant failed coup in Germany, the crown prince of the Japanese royal family was on his way to attend the opening of the Japanese Diet. On his route from the Akasaka Palace to the diet, Prince Hirohito's carriage was passing an intersection known as Toranomon, when a young man emerged from the crowd and fired 2 shots at the carriage. The bullets shattered a window and hit the crown prince. The assassin then screamed "Long live the Communist Party of Japan" and was seized by the crowd. The prince was rushed to a hospital, but died before he could reach proper medical attention. The assassin, Daisuke Namba, the son of a Japanese Diet member, was a radical who supported the Communist Party of Japan. He was sentenced to death and killed weeks later. The death of Hirohito was a watershed moment for Japan. It pushed anti-communist sentiment in Japan to a new high and people accused of communism either fled or committed suicide. The Emperor Taisho, was forced to give the regency to his second son Chichibu, who would be crowned Emperor Tensho upon his fathers death in 1926, was distraught over the loss of his eldest son and went into seclusion. Chichibu was popular and received sympathy from other nations for the loss of his brother. But Chichibu was noted to have less interest in the office of Emperor then his older brother had been. His military career, which had only just begun, received a major boost as he was promoted from Second Lieutenant to Colonel, in the face of anti-communism. It was a flimsy pretense for the military to garner favor with the soon to be emperor. While half a world away a new king was being fitted for his crown, the same was the situation in Germany. The death of Hitler and the banning of the party had placed a divide in the NSDAP. With the de facto leader of the NSDAP, Rudolf Hess, imprisoned the party began to reassemble themselves differently. Two of the most influential members of the party received early release from their sentence after being elected to the Bavarian Landtag under the Nazi aligned Volkischer Block, Gregor Strasser and Ernst Rohm. Gregor Strasser, a Bavarian born veteran and Freikorps commander, was an able politician and fiercely loyal to the NSDAP. After Hitlers death, Strasser pushed to support the anti-capitalist strain of National Socialism and gained the support of not only new recruits, like young Joseph Goebbels, but from close friend of Hitler and leader of the SA, Ernst Rohm. Rohm saw the SA as the building block of a new military, one that would replace the old Prussian run military that many of the men in the National Socialist Party had worked under. Strasser was noted for his organizational skills, and although he lacked the great oratory skills of Hitler, he made sure to evoke the memory of the Fuhrer to the people to whom he spread the word. Strasser's popularity helped gain him the de facto leadership of the party from the imprisoned Hess, which caused a split as many saw Strasser's new form of National Socialism as to communistic. This helped bolster the support the German National Peoples Party, the DNVP, but only in a minor fashion. It soon became clear that the National Socialist movement was now here to stay, and as it spread throughout Germany, out from its base in Bavaria to the masses of Northern and Central Germany, that its new leader was to be Gregor Strasser. National and socialist! What goes first, and what comes afterwards? By 1926, the evolution of the National Socialist German Workers Party, whose ban had long since been ignored, was astounding. Under Strasser, the party had grown by leaps and bounds. The populist message of the Nazis, as they came to be known, was received well by the lower class citizens of Germany, while it's revolutionary overtones were looked at cautiously by the government on the Wilhemstrasse. It was also noted as a far different party by the old party base. Rudolf Hess, after being released found what he dubbed as "a damnable organization". Hess attempted to take control of the party at a meeting in February of 1925, but was rebuffed by the Strassists who had gained control of the party. Many of the people who had participated in the Beer Hall Putsch had left the party after Hitler's death, claiming differences with the party's new direction. Some joined with Hess's new splinter party, the National Socialist Peoples Party (NSVP), but most joined with the German National Peoples Party, which was lead by Kuno von Westarp and funded by media tycoon, Alfred Hugenberg. The DNVP were a nationalist, monarchist, pro-business and anti-semitic party connected with the largest veterans organization in Germany, the Stahlhelm, Bund der Frontsoldaten. With all of its goals and its backing it would seem that the DNVP was the perfect choice for a German nationalist in the 1920's. There was one major difference between it and the NSDAP, was the S. Under Gregor Strasser, the National Socialists had brought the Socialism in National Socialism to the forefront. It was famously said by Strasser at a speech in Berlin that "First socialist redemption, then comes national liberation like a whirlwind!", to which the gathered crowd of over 6,000 cheered. They had also begun to intimidate their political opponents. Under Rohm, the SA had been transformed from a rabble to a private army. Their former leader, Hermann Goering, who had perished in Austria from wounds received during the Beer Hall Putsch, was invoked often at meetings by the Brownshirts, as the SA were growing to be called. So strong were they that the generals of the Reichswehr were beginning to worry, and a young officer by the name of Kurt von Schleicher began to amass power by rebuilding the army with help from an unlikely ally in Moscow. The growth of National Socialism didn't just occur in Germany, but related movements began to spring up in areas with large ethnic German populations. In the Free State of Danzig, Poland, Austria and Czechoslovakia. The reason for this, was that the Nazis were committed to the cause of Pan-German unity. Gross-Deutschland as a future state was often found in Nazi propaganda leaflets, which found their way into Poland and the Sudeten region of Czechoslovakia. In the Sudetenland, where the ethnic Germans were being persecuted by the Czech community in a form of social justice for past transgressions, the movement caught on with the lower class workers, while the upper class tended to support the DNVP which also supported a Gross-Deutschland. In Austria, the National Socialist movement had first taken form in the 1900's and was thought to have influenced the later German parties ideology. It also had a Pan-German standpoint but the largest party in Austria under the Pan German Banner was the Greater German Peoples Party or the GDVP. However, the Austrians also had a nationalist movement of their own. Descended from the Heimwehr militia's of German Austria, whose only mission was to defend the border of the new Austria. The two forces would soon clash. Blood and Soil With the success of the Nazis in the inner city and industrial regions of Germany, there was a certain nationalist backlash. Under Strasser, the party had taken steps to emphasize the worker in National Socialist German Workers Party. This caused the farmers to decidedly move away from their support of the Nazis. It also lead to an increase in membership for the Artaman League. Founded in 1923, the AG (Artaman Gesselschaft) was in support of a return to ruralism and helped relocate over 6,000 city dwellers to the German provinces of Silesia, Saxony and East Prussia in an effort to combat the settlement of these areas by Slavs, Poles in particular. Although the Artamanian movement had similarities with the Nazis, its followers were anti-Socialist, supporting the remarkably similar Volkisch movement. The League formed its settlers into the Wehrbaueren a group of soldier-peasants whose purpose was to defend the settlements from slavic attack. In reality they turned into roving death squads, terrorizing the Slavic neighborhoods and villages. Their crimes were ignored by the police. The Artamanians as a political force were mostly represented by the National Socialist Peoples Party. Under Hess, the NSVP had found a niche with people who, although supportive of Nazi policies, were wary of the socialist tinge it had taken under Strasser. The representative of the League's interest in the NSVP was Richard Walther Darre, whose speeches soon won over the majority of the League. Darre, an Argentinian born whose background as a farmer helped establish the NSVP amongst the agrarian movement. The League soon became the dominant force in the NSVP. Darre soon was able to take the party chair from Hess, who would spend the rest of years in obscurity before being killed in 1932 for his past affiliation with the Nazis. Darre also moved the movement towards a neo-paganist tinge, with unusual rituals becoming a part of daily life in the Artamanian camps. These rituals became whole heartedly accepted by the Artamanians as a rejection of the Judaic based religion of Christianity. One particular settler by the name of Heinrich Himmler, rose to power in the Wehrbauren to the position as its commander. He became a close confidant of Darre and formed a special troop of Wehrbauren that followed Darre around Germany, protecting him as he made speeches. In one particularly memorable moment in 1927, a rally by the National Socialists in rural Saxony was met by an opposing rally by the NSVP. The speaker at the Nazi rally, Wilhelm Frick, referred to the NSVP as "reactionary heathens", which caused the SA to get involved in a street brawl with the Wehrbauren of the NSVP. The brawl was noted because the public of the rural Saxon village were decidedly against the Nazis and forced the Nazi rally to leave. And although the NSVP would remain a minor political force on a national level, it soon came to prominence in Saxony, with Reichsprasident Hindenburg to refer to Darre as "Fuhrer of Saxony". Red Star in a Sea of Blue It was the stroke of Vladimir Lenin that began the power struggle for the leadership of the newly created Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. At the time of the stroke there were a number of men who were poised to take control of the nascent Soviet Union. There were many candidates but the one who was deemed the most likely to succeed was Leon Trotsky. Trotsky was born Lev Davidovich Bronshtein to a well to do Jewish farmer. His main opponent to the position of party chairman and leader of the USSR was a Georgian socialist by the name of Ioseb Besarionis dze Jughashvili better known by his chosen name, Joseph Stalin. Stalin, a feared and powerful member of the party, was disliked by Lenin, largely because of an insult paid to his wife by the young Georgian. Lenin, in the spring of 1923, disowned Stalin as a member of the party in a speech delivered by Trotsky by at the 12th Congress of the Russian Communist Party. The speech blew Stalin out of the water and turned the Party's opinion on the Georgian out of whack. When Lenin's death came months later, Stalin fled from the USSR to Turkey, from where Stalin and his supporters would continue to support guerilla's against the rule of Trotsky, especially in Georgia, where Stalin remained popular. Trotsky's ascension to the head of the nation was looked on wearily from Europe, who saw Trotsky as a troublemaker. Their assumption was correct. Trotsky was a believer in the theory of continual revolution. The idea that the revolution wasn't truly over until over until every capitalist nation had been liberated. This allowed for a complete mess in the foreign policy department. One major instance was the Northern Expedition in 1926. The Expedition was an attempt by the Kuomintang, a nationalist political and military organization that wanted to unite China under their rule, against the warlord cliques of Northern China. Although Trotsky supported the Guominjun, who were allied with the Kuomintang, he also offered support to the Communists who caused uprisings against Kuomintang rule and sponsored the Wuhan Government under left wing KMT leader, Wang Jinwei. The resulting chaos forced the abortion of the Northern Expedition and a continued divide in the legitimacy of the government of China between Chiang Kai-Shek in Guangzhong and Zhang Zoulin in Beijing. Trotsky wasn't an idiot however and realized that certain allies were necessary. He continued the agreement with the Weimar government that allowed the German's to rebuild their military and circumvent the Treaty of Versailles. Many have assumed this was because of Trotsky's opinion of National Socialism. Trotsky recognized that the party held dangerous power and could potentially be a threat to the Soviet Union, especially considering their plans for Eastern expansion. Not to mention their constant use of the term "Jewish Bolshevism" in reference to the Soviet Union. Trotsky also funded the Communist Party of Germany and met personally with Ersnst Thalmann, whom he described as "a true revolutionary". Trotsky overall became a symbol of the Soviet pledge to continue the revolution, which would alienate the Soviet Union from the mainstream international scene for the next decade. Stuck between a Rock and a Hard Place Of all the national leaders watching the Nazi movement closely, none was more aware of the movements potential than Jozef Pilsudski the leader of Poland. After taking power in a swift a decisive coup d'etat in 1926, Pilsudski's regime was one that was considered authoritarian, but was not in many ways. Truly the father of the Second Republic, Pilsudski had defended his nation from Soviet invasion in 1920 and had saved his country from chaos. In his mind. He was distrusted by the Communists, although the feeling was mutual in that regard, and was not a fan of socialism, which he had used as a mean to a gain. Pilsudski did very actual ruling during his "Sanation" Regime, leaving most of the tasks of government to his colonels. The most prominent of these colonels was Edward Rydz-Smigly, who was considered to be Pilsudski's anointed heir. Rydz-Smigly became the leader of Poland's armed forces and pursued a closer alliance with France, Czechoslovakia and the United Kingdom. He was also at the helm when war erupted in their neighbor to the west, Germany. When the Berlin Uprising occurred in May of 1931, the Polish government was quick to act. The National Socialist Uprising in Germany was followed by similar actions in Danzig and the Silesian territories of Poland. The Polish military quickly put down the rebels in Polish territory and occupied Danzig. They then set forces on the border of not only the German border to the west, but to the east. East Prussia, an exclave of the German Reich, was quickly brought under the control of its Social Democratic government and its leader, Otto Braun. Braun was able to take command of the Reichswehr soldiers in East Prussia and convinced them to uphold the government in East Prussia, by violently putting down the Nazi, Communist and pro-Schleicher elements in East Prussia. As a result the small enclave became the last holdout of the legitimate Weimar government, as Germany proper dissolved into pro-Schleicher and Nazi held territories. After the civil war ended in 1935, the Braun government of East Prussia refused to recognize the legitimacy of the government in Berlin and retained its independence with the help of Poland. The breakout of war in Germany proved the beginning of the Polish rise to power. Suddenly far more worried about the potential of war, Yugoslavia, Austria, Czechoslovakia and Poland signed a treaty of mutual defense and alliance in 1932, with Dollfuss, Pilsudski, Benes and King Alexander's signature, the Litlle Entente was formed. Although its primary aim was to protect from German invasion, it was also based on Polish fears of a Soviet attack and Yugoslav fears of an Italian invasion. The Entente was viewed warily from Moscow and Berlin. But it would assure peace in Central Europe, for years to come.