Halifax.

It seems to me that in Stalin's mind this peace deal, and the treaty of nonaggression, would compromise the imperialist powers of the world aligning against him and the USSR. I think that the likelihood of the USSR being better prepared for war is quite high.
 
This is a great timeline. Did Halifax bring Labour and Liberal (other than Lloyd George) ministers into his government? Also did he broadcast to the British people on the radio?

In OTL Churchill appointed Halifax as Ambassador to the United States in January 1941. Will you state whom Halifax appoints to the post?
 
I think that the likelihood of the USSR being better prepared for war is quite high.

xt828,

Not taking actions that in actuality will leave them better prepared, rather taking actions that they believe will leave them better prepared.

After all, the Soviet Union didn't purge all those officers in the 1930s in order to make the army worse. They honestly believed that enforcing ideological purity through informants and death squads would result in a better army.

I can easily see the Soviets making all sorts of snap decisions with regards to preparedness after the peace between the WAllies and Germany is hammered and many of those hurried decisions won't be helpful at all.


Bill
 
This is a great timeline. Did Halifax bring Labour and Liberal (other than Lloyd George) ministers into his government? Also did he broadcast to the British people on the radio?

In OTL Churchill appointed Halifax as Ambassador to the United States in January 1941. Will you state whom Halifax appoints to the post?
It was, alas simply L-G that he persuaded to enter the cabinet. I was going to go into the matter of domestic politics more in the next post on the thread. No prizes for guessing there is going to be an general election.

I assume he would have made a radio broadcast on the matter. Would you like me to make up some sort of transcript of said broadcast as an extra. I'll add it on before begining next part.

As for the position of ambassador, it will not, as the cliche goes, be Sir Winston Churchill. I can confirm that now. I do have someone in mind however.

Bill kinda answered the question about Stalin and the Soviet Union, so next post, the radio broadcast transcript will either be later today or tommorow...
 
Originally posted by FletcherofSaltoun
I assume [Halifax] would have made a radio broadcast on the matter. Would you like me to make up some sort of transcript of said broadcast as an extra.
Yes I would.
 
pipisme, just for you.......

Broadcast of the result of the Second Versailles Treaty.
Lord Halifax said:
Little under ten months ago, my predecessor sat in this very chair and made the announcement that we were in a state of war with Germany, due to their act of unrestrained aggression by invading Poland. As we had made promises to both the Polish Government and the Polish people, we had little choice in our action. In my view, and in any sensible persons view, Germany held the guilt for the war.

Since Mr Hitler became the German Chancellor in 1933, Germany has pursued a policy of vast and speedy rearmament, whilst the rest of Europe enjoyed the fruits of peace, following the most violent and brutal war in known memory. He led a policy of rebuilding Germany, we thought as was the case in many people’s eyes the not unjustifiable aim of reunifying the German peoples.

As such, we stood back whilst he reoccupied the Saarland. We agreed to the Anschluss with Austria and even then, when Hitler requested that the Sudetenland be returned to Germany, at the Munich conference, we gave way. Up until that point, we were of the opinion that it was the aim of Hitler solely to reunite the German peoples.

Then, after inviting the President of Czechoslovakia to Berlin, he presented him with a deal which had already be completed, which either he sign, or his nation be crushed. Mr Havel signed over the Czech people, which gave them the fate of being the first nation occupied by the Nazis. Due to Havel’s signature, we had no legal basis for declaring war upon Germany, but for the first time, and too late, we became fully aware of the nature of the current German Government.

Following this event, we attempted to rearm as quickly as we could. In alliance with our friends in France, we promised that we could save Poland from destruction from the Nazi menace. We made promises to the Polish Government that we would defend them, and once Hitler’s grasping claw moved east, we declared war.

Sadly, despite the bravery of both our, and the other allied forces in the field of battle, we became unable to control events. We were no longer master of the field. The Germans forced the majority of the British Expeditionary Force to retreat, which we did with much bravery and courage, from the port of Dunkirk. They threatened the forces still in the field, and had we continued the war, most likely would have taken Paris.

On the 6th June, I visited Prime Minister Reynaud in Bordeaux, where he explained to me that it was the intention of the French Government to seek a peace deal, and asked me if it was possible to release the French from their obligations as an ally. Sadly, I could not do this, but upon discussion, I agreed to put the matter of a ceasefire towards the Cabinet.

Late on the night of the 6th, the Cabinet had a lively discussion on the matter of a ceasefire, but upon conclusion, it became clear that the only option left to us, as the affair stood was to ask for a ceasefire. Had we not done so our own national liberty would have been at risk. As such, through the Swedish Embassy, we contacted the Germans, who agreed to a ceasefire on June 8 at midnight. Almost symbolically the German forces stopped just beyond the town of Verdun.

Upon the ceasefire, with our production continuing to magnificently increase the weaponry we need to fight the war, we prepared for a peace conference, which it was agreed should be held in the Palace of Versailles.

Going into the conference, I had four major points. The main points were the territorial integrity of the British Empire and that the Germans leave the Low Countries and Norway. To that extent, I was partially successful. In the Netherlands, Belgium and Norway the legitimate Governments will be restored. Denmark however remains under the shadow of the Nazis.

France however has ceded much in the negotiations. Alsace-Lorraine has been handed back to Germany, as has the island Madagascar. Industry in the east of France will also suffer, being handed over to the Germans for a period of five years. Aside from that, they have made other concessions. Luxembourg, that proud little nation, tonight ceases to exist, as it has also been ceded to Germany.

We have also agreed a ten-year non-aggression pact with the Germans.

Overall though, my main points have been met, and as such, we have brought back peace with honour.

We must now learn the lessons of the previous conflict. We must remain vigilant. We must prepare now, with vigour for any future foe we may face. It is my intention that from this day forward, such a deal will never be forced again. To Poland, I offer my most sincere apologies that we were unable to save her peoples. To the rest of Europe and the world, I say this.

We will protect you. We will defend you. With growing ardour, we will save you, should any menace, be it from any part of the world threaten you. We will continue wartime production until our nation is safe, so that any dictator from any part of the world knows that we are serious in our pledge.

To the oppressed peoples of Europe, I promise you this. One day, you will be free.

We are now not at war, but we are not at peace. I ask the world to believe my point. Britain will now become the defender of liberty.

It is our duty to be so.
 
Fletcher

Fascinating idea. Often wondered have things might have gone if Britain had made peace in 40-41. Like you I suspect it would be more a case of an Amiens peace than a major surrender. Also, while Hitler will get a freer hack at the SU without a blockage or war on other fronts, if he doesn’t win decisively very quickly then Germany is in a hole that is likely to get deeper rapidly. Whether it is complicated by the allies re-entering the conflict relatively early or wait until the two eastern monsters have exhausted themselves.

A lot would probably depend on how Britain especially responds to the situation. Unlikely it would go back to sleep, with a clear defeat so recent and Germany so much of a threat to its survival as an independent state. However how wisely will the new opportunity be used? Too big a military build-up could be counter productive, lumbering the forces with outdated equipment and the economy with heavy expenditure. Also, without a shooting war on-going how much of war time taxes will the country maintain and for how long. Also would peacetime conscription, introduced only a year ago, continue? Arguably a more measured approach with sizeable investment in developing the economy and productive capacity would be more constructive to the countries long term military strength. Also will they seek to defend, with more escort vessels or attack with more bombers etc.

The question of Japan is going to be interesting. An attack north will be especially attractive to the army, for internal political purposes, to gain revenge for earlier defeat and also to crush the hated communist state. However it doesn’t really solve Japan’s problems, no matter how deadly it might just be for the Soviets. They want the oil and other resources of the south while as long as they continue their attacks in China it will raise tension with the western powers. The key point here might be for how the allies respond to their defeat. They might decide they have to concentrate everything on defeating Germany in which case they seek to avoid clashes with Japan. Or that they can no longer afford to appease anyone, possibly with a side-dish of wishing to restate their power and position by facing down a ‘weaker’ power. Key point might be if the Japanese try and gain bases in French Indo-China. Without this their strike south is vastly more difficult, even without Britain not fighting for its life and France totally prostrate.

I rather like the Halifax speech. Covering the main details but avoiding openly admitting defeat while hinting at it. Also rather stuffy. I rather suspect that he wouldn’t have used the paragraph:

“To the oppressed peoples of Europe, I promise you this. One day, you will be free.”

While he is hopefully intending that I strongly suspect he wouldn’t have openly stated it. It would not only make clear to the Germans his intent and undermine his position but it could even be taken as a new declaration of war. The last thing I think Britain wants at this point. Much better to work quietly until our position is considerably stronger and let Germany get distracted by the east.

A couple of other questions:
a) Did we manage to avoid any concessions to Italy? From what I remember reading, albeit a while back, they wanted various territorial gains simply for acting as mediator.

b) Is the German demand for Madagascar a hint their planning on exiling the Jews there? Hopefully as it might possibly save a lot of lives. Since they don’t seem to have tried to get back any of the colonies they had historical claims on that’s what I’m thinking.

Anyway, another thread to subscribe to. :D

Steve
 
Interesting idea.

My main issue with it is that it doesn't address what you could call the local politics of the British political classes. By the point of your PoD, Nazi Germany had completely discredited themselves in the diplomatic front. Essentially, anyone who had negotiated with them in good faith had been burnt and shown to be a fool. As a result, the British Establishment hd given up on the very concept of negotiating with Germany, as the Germans had lost all credibility, and hence those negotiating with them had lost face, whoch had poisoned any chance of any deal happening.

At core, no matter what the Germans or French do or say, the British will disregard, as the Germans have transgressed to a degree that the British can't bring themselves to return to the table.

Any government that attempted a deal would fall, as the MPs had simply lost faith in German commitments, and a PM who proposed a deal would be seen as a fool in light of recent events.
 
a) Did we manage to avoid any concessions to Italy? From what I remember reading, albeit a while back, they wanted various territorial gains simply for acting as mediator.


Steve
Yeah, Italy would probably want Tunisia at the least. They'd probably ask for Nice and Savoy too, though that demand could be refused.
 
xt828,

Not taking actions that in actuality will leave them better prepared, rather taking actions that they believe will leave them better prepared.

After all, the Soviet Union didn't purge all those officers in the 1930s in order to make the army worse. They honestly believed that enforcing ideological purity through informants and death squads would result in a better army.

I can easily see the Soviets making all sorts of snap decisions with regards to preparedness after the peace between the WAllies and Germany is hammered and many of those hurried decisions won't be helpful at all.


Bill
Quite. In the time between the Winter War, when it was made plain to the Soviet military that serious work was needed, and Barbarossa, Soviet development continued as a fairly steady pace, due to to Stalin's belief in the security of his western border. If, OTOH, he believe that the hammer is about to fall, I would imagine that the Soviets would be encouraged to work faster and produce results now. There is, IMO, potential to see more OKBs working from within the GULAG, but at the same time it's possible that the relocation of industry would begin pre-war and that rationalisation of vehicle and aircraft designs would begin sooner. Seems fair to say that there could be interesting times ahead for Soviet industry and the military complex.
 
Interesting idea.

My main issue with it is that it doesn't address what you could call the local politics of the British political classes. By the point of your PoD, Nazi Germany had completely discredited themselves in the diplomatic front. Essentially, anyone who had negotiated with them in good faith had been burnt and shown to be a fool. As a result, the British Establishment hd given up on the very concept of negotiating with Germany, as the Germans had lost all credibility, and hence those negotiating with them had lost face, whoch had poisoned any chance of any deal happening.

At core, no matter what the Germans or French do or say, the British will disregard, as the Germans have transgressed to a degree that the British can't bring themselves to return to the table.

Any government that attempted a deal would fall, as the MPs had simply lost faith in German commitments, and a PM who proposed a deal would be seen as a fool in light of recent events.
I don't think the TL disregard your point about Germany's fully lost credibility. But, with France about to fall, they need to buy time. They know round 2 is coming. But France will be standing in that round.
 
?Can France get around the limits and send those 150,000 saved Soldiers to the Colonies as local Militias?

It was the Fall of France that woke up the US, and allowed FDR to get his Blank check for the Military. ?How does this shortened War affect US views?.
 
?Can France get around the limits and send those 150,000 saved Soldiers to the Colonies as local Militias?
Well how's this for a way round the problem - the British set up their own version of the Foreign Legion - call it something like "Kings European Legion" (or KEL for short).

The British then proceed to recruit about 50,000 or so Europeans and - surprise - a large proportion of them just "happen" to be French. The KEL then get based in France as part of the British forces that we're planning to base there.

Of course its a set up, and the Germans will scream "Treaty violation" - however technically it's legal - the KEL count as British forces, not French.

There is a precident of sorts, in the Napoleonic wars the British set up the Kings German Legion, made up largely of Hanoverian troops who wanted to continue the fight after Napoleon invaded Hanover.
 
I rather like the Halifax speech. Covering the main details but avoiding openly admitting defeat while hinting at it. Also rather stuffy. I rather suspect that he wouldn’t have used the paragraph:

“To the oppressed peoples of Europe, I promise you this. One day, you will be free.”

While he is hopefully intending that I strongly suspect he wouldn’t have openly stated it. It would not only make clear to the Germans his intent and undermine his position but it could even be taken as a new declaration of war. The last thing I think Britain wants at this point. Much better to work quietly until our position is considerably stronger and let Germany get distracted by the east.
Thanks. I added it on with the British electorate in mind. That being said, you are probably right. This is a draft after all, I'll see if I can change it around a wee bit when the finished version comes along.
a) Did we manage to avoid any concessions to Italy? From what I remember reading, albeit a while back, they wanted various territorial gains simply for acting as mediator.
Remember, they were a neutral power. There are no concessions to the Italians, with the exception of being allowed to use French ports in the med.

The Brits asked the Swedes, the Germans asked the Italians. Remember they were simply joint mediators. Also remember, whilst France was defeated, it was not annhailated as in OTL.
b) Is the German demand for Madagascar a hint their planning on exiling the Jews there? Hopefully as it might possibly save a lot of lives. Since they don’t seem to have tried to get back any of the colonies they had historical claims on that’s what I’m thinking.
I did have the jews in mind with this move, although it is simply being discussed as a possibility at the moment in TTL.
I don't think the TL disregard your point about Germany's fully lost credibility. But, with France about to fall, they need to buy time. They know round 2 is coming. But France will be standing in that round.
That is pretty much the point I was making.
?Can France get around the limits and send those 150,000 saved Soldiers to the Colonies as local Militias?

It was the Fall of France that woke up the US, and allowed FDR to get his Blank check for the Military. ?How does this shortened War affect US views?.
I'll be bringing the Americans in at the next post, so if you are ok, I'll stay quiet on US reaction at the moment. With regards to France, the British forces which are due to be stationed will bolster them. Also, expect a rise in French Gendarmerie. Tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime and all that......;)
 
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