Ghastly Victories: The United States in the World Wars

So the USA are not part of the League, not even with the provision: sure we are part of the club and will reap any benefit but remember we do as we please and you must accept it so kiss our b..t because we are so special and awesome
 
So the USA are not part of the League, not even with the provision: sure we are part of the club and will reap any benefit but remember we do as we please and you must accept it so kiss our b..t because we are so special and awesome
More realistically 'because we have the economic and military strength to make not accepting it too expensive.' Practically every nation has a 'because we are so special and awesome' viewpoint, it's just that whichever nations have the best combination of economy and military at a given time are able to enforce that.
 
More realistically 'because we have the economic and military strength to make not accepting it too expensive.' Practically every nation has a 'because we are so special and awesome' viewpoint, it's just that whichever nations have the best combination of economy and military at a given time are able to enforce that.
Sure but in this specific case the fact was that with all this provision, basically the USA got all the political and diplomatic advantage of being in the League and at the same time, legally say: f..k it i can do as i want and still it was not ok or it was not enough
 
Sure but in this specific case the fact was that with all this provision, basically the USA got all the political and diplomatic advantage of being in the League and at the same time, legally say: f..k it i can do as i want and still it was not ok or it was not enough
Yes? That does not appear to contradict what I wrote.
 
Yes? That does not appear to contradict what I wrote.

Because what the USA has done is much worse, to make an contemporary example, it's like the United Kingdom had obtained from the EU all what demanded and more because they really needed her and in the end showed to them the middle finger and saying 'i'm too cool for you'. It's basically destroying a vast amount of soft power for shit and giggle and while the USA retain the upper hand due to the financial need of the europeans, it fail to consider that : while if you own to the bank 1000 dollar you have a problem with the bank, if youf own the bank 1000000 it's the bank that have a problem with you and OTL Great Depression showed that in the end the Europeans don't have a lot of problem in stopping paying the war debt.
To cite Londo Mollari: Arrogance and stupidity in the same package, very efficient
 
I'm not saying that it's a good thing, I'm saying that suggesting that the US is unusual for being willing to do it, rather than for being able, is inaccurate.
 
Part 3-9 New
…The Russian Counteroffensives against the Bolsheviks started in the Summer of 1920. Even before then things went wrong, friction between the Russian Army in the Baltic States resulted from arrogant officers opposed to the idea of independent Baltic Nations. As a result the attack there did not go off until August 1st, leaving a two-pronged attack to isolate St. Petersburg with only one prong.

The offensive out of Finland did well enough, defeating the Bolshevik forces at the border and slowly advancing. Yet faced with only one attack the Bolsheviks were able to throw enough men at it to grind it to a bloody halt well outside St. Petersburg by the end of July.

The Southern prong then launched and again did well against the Bolshevik border forces before it was again stopped by Bolshevik reserves in mid-September. In doing so most of the central reserves available to the Bolsheviks had been depleted. The purging of experienced army officers resulted in underperformance compared to the previous year.

However despite these shortcomings the Bolsheviks were able to deal with both forces, using their rivalry against each other. A renewed push in the north had already been delayed by refusal to release supplies by the southern force. Continued competition between the forces for supplies and refusal to cooperate allowed Trotsky to rush reinforcements between the two fronts on interior lines to deal with them separately.

Elsewhere things had been going worse for the Bolsheviks, the thrust out of Poland captured Minsk in late August and was advancing on Smolensk with only limited opposition. In the North a British backed force was moving south from Archangel, stopped more by lack of troops than active opposition. In the Black Sea Odessa and Sevastopol had already fallen to French backed forces that were now advancing up the Don in order to avoid the Anarchist mess in Ukraine.

The Bolsheviks were raising more forces however their effectiveness was in question. Trotsky was the de facto leader of the Bolshevik Red Army and he was insistent that the former Tsarist officers be reinstated and the authority of commissars reduced or else the Red Army would be unable to stop the counter attacks. Trotsky’s measure was agreed upon, yet he made a number of enemies and suspicions of Bonapartism were increasingly voiced among the Bolshevik higher ups…

…In Ireland the arrival of the Auxiliary Constables poured gasoline on the flames. The so named Black and Tans lacked the discipline and police training of the RIC men they were replacing, as well as the immersion in the local culture. They were outsiders disdainful of the Irish and prone to overreacting. Reprisals began with beatings and soon escalated to robbery, arson and murder of suspected Republican sympathizers.

At first these reprisals by Auxiliary Constables and British Army men were launched on their own initiative, but by December of 1920 they became official policy. Irish Republicans had won control of most of the local offices in Southern and Western Ireland, resulting in a collapse of British government authority in the area. The British responded by declaring Martial Law in Munster and Leinster and launching a campaign of terror to intimidate the Irish.

This proved unsuccessful and things reached a head on Sunday December 5th, Bloody Sunday as it was known where in reprisal for an IRA Raid on a British intelligence office, British forces fired into a funeral procession using an armored car’s mounted machine gun and killed 43 civilians, including a priest. IRA counterattacks led to even greater reprisals with the burning of Cork, Irelands 3rd largest city on Christmas Eve.

Despite minor victories in breaking the railway strikes, by threatening the railways with bankruptcy, the British were increasingly losing the PR War…

…Mustafa Kemal knew he had very little time, his forces had little in the way of supplies or ability to gain more. He had to move fast and defeat the Greeks before he ran out of resources. On June 29th he launched his campaign, focusing on crossing the Sakarya River as quickly as possible. He quickly convinced the loyalist army sent to stop him at Polatli to change sides before crossing the River.

Realizing the potential danger, the Greeks sent Cavalry units ahead to try and stop the Turkish advance. While unsuccessful they did slow the Kemalists down and allow Greek infantry to reach Kutahya and dig in. A Kemalist attempt to break the lines was easily repulsed. Kemal then worked to get Loyalist garrisons elsewhere in Turkey to change sides while coming up with an alternative plan.

If he could not take the Greeks on the bounce, perhaps he could outflank them. The Italian zone to the South had seen the Ottoman forces within go over to Kemal en masse and defeat many of the outlying Italian garrisons made up of demoralized, poorly supplied third rate troops. The Greeks were already shifting forces to prevent such an attack. In doing so they had stripped forces from the North. While he could not bash through the defenses established on the lower reaches of the Sakarya, he could go around them.

For various geopolitical reasons the British, French and Italians were keeping the Greek Navy out of the Black Sea, and not interfering in any use by Kemalist ships. While Kemal only had a few hastily armed steamers, that would be enough for him to outflank the Greeks by sea, unhinge their lines and take Izmit and the Asian portion of Constantinople. The latter was especially important as doing so would give him the legitimacy to possibly make inroads in getting the major powers of Europe to revise the Treaty of Sevres.

Kemal set off on his flanking maneuver personally aboard the armed steamer Bandirma. With him on a number of commandeered steamers, barges, fishing ships and tugs were 10,000 of his best troops. The Greeks had no knowledge of the operation until almost two days after the flotilla had sailed from Zonguldak on the 18th of October. By this point it was too late for the Army to move ground forces to the landing site at Kandira and there were no armed Army aviation aircraft in the area.

The Greek Navy however was in a position to intervene. The Navy did not want the army to get all of the glory, and with naval vessels shut from the Black Sea, they turned to the naval air service. Bomber and torpedo aircraft had been stationed nearby in Kaynarca to try and hunt the armed steamers used by the Kemalists. Now they were presented with a golden opportunity.

As the Kemalist flotilla was preparing to unload 17 Greek naval aircraft attacked the flotilla. Unprepared for an air attack the Kemalists were unable to respond with more than small arms, letting the Greek aviators take their time. Only 4 vessels were hit, and only two were sunk, the tug Alemdar and the steamer Bandira. However that was enough, as Kemal was killed when the Bandira went under. The captains of the impressed vessels scattered upon the loss of the flagship, fearful of further air attack. The landing at Kandira was averted and with it any hope for a Kemalist victory…

…With the death of Kemal the Turkish nationalist movement fragmented as no clear leader was able to succeed him. The Greeks were thus able to take Ankara in Spring 1921 against only mild resistance, and basically end the Turkish nationalist revolt…

-Excerpt from European Wars for Americans, Harper & Brothers, New York, 2004



This would have been longer, but computer trouble and an arts festival intervened
 
Wow, you're certainly living up to the title of this work; Ghastly Victories indeed - that sheer amount of conflict is leading to almost a 1990s Balkan level of conflicts over a wide world of ethnic wars and nationalism depredations on civilians.
 
HOLY SNAP Ataturk getting sunk by a greek air raid was not what I expected to happen! Turks got dunked on, between that and the Bolsheviks doing worse than OTL (I think?) I wonder if there's any hope of an independent interwar Armenia?

I know it was only converted civilian steamers, but the Greeks just decisively changed the course of a war via aerial attacks on enemy combat ships. This seems like something that could have a major legacy and impact on the roles of aircraft in the minds of naval thinkers.

What models of aircraft did the Greeks have, actually? Surprised they have their own torpedo bombers. EDIT: in general, how much use did Greece get out of aircraft in the OTL war, for comparison?
 
Something I just realized. One of the reasons in OTL that led to Japan conclude that they could defeat the US in a Pacific war was that they assumed that the US has the mentality of traditional European power: namely that by striking at their peripherals (i.e. colonies and territories rather than heartland and states) it would not willing to mobilize its full might into said war (of course that's prewar thought, by the time the war did drawn out they were too hyped up on their own delusions). The greater bloodletting of the US forces in this timeline might make the Japanese military more appreciative of American willingness to fight (though probably not enough once they get desperate, but it might delay things)
I know it was only converted civilian steamers, but the Greeks just decisively changed the course of a war via aerial attacks on enemy combat ships. This seems like something that could have a major legacy and impact on the roles of aircraft in the minds of naval thinkers.
That's still hindsight talking. Chances are most military thinkers (especially those on the winning side) will dismiss it as minor flukes. On the other hand some of the weaker nations and lowers of the war might grasp that simply because it's a cheaper way of quickly regaining military relevancy.
 
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That's still hindsight talking. Chances are most military thinkers (especially those on the winning side) will dismiss it as minor flukes. ON the other hand some of the weaker nations and lowers of the war might grasp that simply because it's a cheaper way of quickly regaining military relevancy.
One lesson I could see people taking from this is that aircraft are effective against civilian ships, even if they obviously couldn't threaten a battleship. Light carriers might become the weapon of choice for a navy intent on convoy raiding, and nations fearing an amphibious invasion might invest more in aircraft than surface ships or coastal defenses. I'm especially imagining Norway or Sweden going in for this.

And of course, it's almost a given that Greece will be building its air power. The Royal Hellenic Air Force has basically just won the war for them, and they will likely capitalize on that prestige. Someone will probably propose that Greece should build airstrips on as many islands as possible to completely dominate the Aegean. Even if the project isn't fully implemented, a powerful RHAF based in the Aegean (presumably with its primary base on Crete) could be a very tough nut to crack, especially if Greece also ends up controlling part of Anatolia.
 
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