If the Third Reich took over Britain, who would have led the colloborationist Gov?

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by IntellectuallyHonestRhino, Nov 25, 2018.

  1. RousseauX Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2011
    David Loyd George as the Petain analogy
  2. Odinson Talk Nerdy To Me

    Nov 27, 2018
    I don't no much about either man, but what about Lord Halifax or Horace Wilson?

    Churchill would most likely be executed.
  3. ShortsBelfast Events, dear boy, events

    May 20, 2016
    Sir Horace is Head of the Civil service and Cabinet Secretary not a politician. Halifax didn't really want to be a wartime PM so unlikely to volunteer for colaborationist PM either. And Churchill probably wouldn't be executed if the French experience is anything to go by. He is a defeated, discredited figure so why make a martyr out of him? Reynaud and Daladier weren't executed in France, just imprisoned.
  4. M79 Well-Known Member

    Jan 8, 2007
    Head of State: Edward VIII
    Prime Minister: Lord Halifax
    Lord Privy Seal: Oswald Mosley
    Lord Chancellor: Sir Thimas Inskip
    Chancellor of the Exchequer: Hugh Dalton
    Cabinet Secretary: Clement Atlee
    Secretary of State: Malcolm MacDonald
    Minister of Communication: William Joyce
    First Lord of the Admiralty: Lord Chatfield
    President of Board of Trade: Sir Maugham
    President of Board of Education: Anthony Eden
    Minister of Agriculture: Leslie Burgin
    Minister of Labour: Lord De La Warr
    Minister of Health: Walter Eliott
    Minister of Transport: Herbert Morrison
    Minister of Coordination of Defense: Stanley Baldwin
  5. King_Arthur The Once and Present King

    Feb 22, 2018
    Um what

    He's dead
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  6. ShortsBelfast Events, dear boy, events

    May 20, 2016
    No, just retired from politics after the Abdication. Didn't die until 1947.
    Not possible, Herbert Morrison is Jewish. He will have fled to the US or Canada and will be part of the Government in Exile.
  7. RyuDrago Italian? Yes, but also Roman

    Nov 30, 2010
    Well there is to remember that Baldwin went to borderline treason during the crisis as he put Edward's phone and other acts under control, and he couldn't. But is also true that Edward could have pushed the gig if he was more sure of himself and going through the costitutional crisis. I am not sure about the fact he decided to abdicate to preserve the integrity of the Empire when he scoffed at the not so veiled threats of the First Minister of Australia ("there is not much people there" he said). Surely he tried to gather popular support at the time and it worked - in part.

    I feel also for this the government and the establishment pratically went public about the last legs of the crisis - But I am not buying much about that editorial of the Times (which for me was more oriented towards the Americans than the British audience stating "well, the king could marry any American he wanted, but not a double divorced one, it's a matter of decor") swinging decisively the public opinion against Edward.

    Sure if Edward returned as King he may have taken any sort of revenge on the Times, or to better say let the Germans do the honours for him...

    I wonder if Edward may have attempted to save Churchill, who supported him during the crisis in hate of Baldwin and the British aristocracy...
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  8. MKD Well-Known Member

    Oct 4, 2017
    Milton Keynes Central
    Sir Oswald Mosley might expect to be involved but i doubt the Nazi would give him the top job. More likely it would go to a recognisable quisling. Someone would have taken the job not because of belief in fascim but more from a misguided belief they could control the impact of the imposition of fascism on the UK. It would quickly dawn on them that they were wrong but also that they were unable to reverse out of the role. Perhaps someone like Halifax would suit the role.

    The Royal family would have been spirited away to Canada along with senior politicians to form a government in exile. The Nazi would have wanted to place the Duke of Windsor on the throne. Churchill, if he stayed in London and was captured alive would be imprisoned not executed. Why make him a martyr? If he escapes his speeches become a kind of underground currency keeping alive a resistance to Nazi rule in the UK. He would hope to persuade the Yanks to come to the rescue but i suspect this would be futile.

    The King is an interesting one. I think he would send his wife and family away to ensure the line continued but I am not sure he would want to abandon his people. My view is that he would refuse until the last minute, leaving his escape just too late and being captured before he can make it away. For him to be seen leaving would be destructive to morale. I think he would be imprisoned with a grand show being made of him abdicating in favour of his brother. However the people would not recognize the restoration and instead recognize Elizabeth as Queen. The Empire would support her while the ties of fealty gradually weakened. South Africa would be difficult but i think at least officially they would fall in line. The USA would be cordial but realistic. Ireland would fall in line with Nazi wishes.

    Not a chance.
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  9. ShortsBelfast Events, dear boy, events

    May 20, 2016
    Dalton was gay and could have been subjected to pressure if the Nazis had detained his partner (this wouldn't be regarded with the same distaste and thus counter-productive as arresting a prominente's wife and children as hostages). Lady Megan Lloyd George was on the Nazis primary arrest lists (entirely in her own right on the basis of her own political views it must be said) and securing her safety and survival would no doubt have been an influence on Lloyd George.
  10. Nathan Bernacki Well-Known Member

    Dec 18, 2016
    if I remember correctly, the Nazis had trouble picking out potential collaborators among the British population. Try as the could, they couldn't find anyone who they thought would be a perfect puppet for them.

    That being said, if push comes to shove, I think they would've asked King Edward to come back on the throne. Edward hated being Governor of the Bahamas. Also during a visit to Germany in October 1937, he was treated with the upmost respect by the Nazi hierarchy and was believed by the former Austrian ambassador to the League Nations, Albert von Mensdorff, that Edward favoured German fascism as a bulwark against communism, and even that he initially favoured an alliance with Germany.

    As for Oswald Mosely, I see him being something of a puppet Prime Minister, but I believe the Nazis would put all of the power into their puppet king and turn Britain into something of a faux absolute monarchy, with Mosely just being used as a conduit between the King and the British people. Before the war, Mosely, though he was a member of the British upper class, held no serious political pedigree and took more inspiration from Mussolini than Hitler, so I don't see why he would be the Nazis' top man in London.

    I think Free France would cease all hostilities with the Axis if London had fallen. The British were the only thing supporting De Gaulle's exiled army. If the British had surrendered, I don't see De Gaulle being able to put up a fight. He would either flee to Canada or maybe, get captured by the Nazis and deported to Vichy France, where he would be executed for treason. But the flame of French resistance would've been snuffed out if Britain had fallen. This goes for the Polish and Czech undergrounds too. With no support from the UK, they would've fallen apart due to lack of supplies.

    Ireland was a neutral nation, so I think the Nazis would more or less leave it alone. Maybe they give Northern Ireland back to shore up support among the Irish population. Maybe they depose the Irish government and install someone from the IRA? Who knows?

    As for the colonies, (by which I assume you include the Dominions), I don't see them waving the white flag and recognizing some false king in London. They would recognize King George as the true monarch, ruling in exile from Canada or maybe the Bahamas, and continue the fight.

    As for Scotland and Wales, I think the Nazis would keep them bound with England. it would be much easier to occupy one, united and controlled nation than three, disorderly nations.
  11. stodge Member

    Jan 3, 2004
    One thing Sir Samuel Hoare and Adolf Hitler had in common was they both found Franco very difficult to talk to and deal with.

    Hoare's removal from Government was one of the preconditions of Labour supporting a National Government under Churchill in May 1940. Hoare was 60 years old and I suspect would have found dealing with the Germans very stressful but dealing with Laval much less so.

    Alexander Cadogan claimed Hoare would be Britain's Quisling in 1940.
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  12. yulzari Well-Known Member

    Dec 15, 2011
    The route for the Empire to look to liberate Britain in 1940/41 was via the Soviet Union (yes I know about the pact) so an anti communist would be a sensible choice for the Germans planning Barbarossa in the hope of raising British units within the German ones. But then the same would have been sensible IOTL with France. Ignoring the Nazi party ideologues, Hitler had no use for Western Europe he wanted the East and a subject anti communist France and Britain would be an asset instead of a drain.
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  13. stodge Member

    Jan 3, 2004
    I think we know that, as with Vichy, the area controlled by the puppet British Government would be limited and would exclude the coastal areas which would remain under military control plus other areas the Germans would deem necessary. It's easy to imagine resistance continuing in the Welsh hills, the Lake District and especially the Scottish Highlands but that could and would be masked and ignored and would have to survive a winter. Urban resistance would be ruthlessly eliminated.

    It's then a question of other events and butterflies - the invasion of Russia is going to happen and in 1941 but does it happen early enough to be decisive or on 22/6/41 as in OTL? Bringing Russia into the conflict is going to fuel communist resistance everywhere (including the UK - why not?). The bigger question is or would be Pearl Harbour and the ramifications thereof. If BOTH Russia and America are in the conflict by early 1942 it becomes much harder for the Axis.

    Trends - over time, German military control will strengthen over Britain as resistance increases and presumably the threat of direct American intervention via Ireland grows from say 44 onwards. As in France and Denmark, eventually the puppet Government will be so emasculated as to be meaningless and Britain will be under military control until that ends somehow - either a peaceful German withdrawal after a surrender following atomic bombs over central Europe or as a combined American, Canadian and Australian force lands on the south coast of England and the weakened German forces are pushed back.

    After, the collaborators, both in Government and elsewhere, would be hunted down and tried (and executed) for their crimes. We'd see the same treatment meted out to girls and women who fraternised with German soldiers as we saw in Occupied Europe and the Channel Islands. As to the fate of Britain's Jewish population, well, that's a subject for another day.
  14. IntellectuallyHonestRhino Well-Known Member

    Dec 25, 2017
    Andromeda Galaxy
    Perhaps in the Finance Ministry.

    Finance Minister would be a high position.
  15. Greg Grant Well-Known Member

    Apr 17, 2007
    I wouldn't believe a single thing Mosley said, even if his tongue as notarized. As for Nazis picking direct puppets, they would have went with Mosley only as a last resort, if they could find no other name value to be their puppet. Maybe Lloyd George, and maybe Hoare, not because of his arch-appeaser credentials but because he would have been vain enough to believe that he would be the man to normalize the relations between occupied England and the Reich. Rab Butler was the young man on the make at the time, and he would have been what Mosley wasn't, someone with credentials without the stink, but was he known well enough to be PM? I can see Halifax be talked into it as well.

    Totally off-topic, but did anyone else look at that phrase and went, "well, if we kill you for retreating, then who are we supposed to avenge?" I get it's a striking phrase, but maybe the order of the declarations could be moved around it a bit or a different choice of words, such as "if I am slain by the enemy" or something. Just a thought.
  16. M79 Well-Known Member

    Jan 8, 2007
    National unity and the desire for an ally that does not seem an overt puppet means the Nazis are likely a bit more flexible about who is allowed to stay in power (save Morrison, I did not know he was Jewish). National Unity will be a theme but Mosley will likely be the Quisling given token status but no real power, Hitler wanted an *effective* British ally. My list assumes a British takeover where they have enough strength to form an effective resistance and this government is designed to supplant that to a degree, an unconditional surrender with total puppet/military government will look somewhat different.

    An interesting question: other than Elizabeth are there any other viable contenders for inheriting a British throne from a Quisking Edward VIII?
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  17. New Cleo Genesis Ṣrtô nag lavēskiy drûotnec?

    Dec 12, 2013
    Charles Edward the Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha seems like a remote possibility.
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  18. MKD Well-Known Member

    Oct 4, 2017
    Milton Keynes Central
    I simply can not see the people I quote serving in a Nazi regime. Eden became very anti nazi after initially being pro league of nations and pro appeasement and became a close confidant of Churchill. Atlee was vehemently opposed to totalitarianism to such an extent that he served under Churchill ( a man utterly hated by vast swathes of the Labour movement) to help see them off. Morrison was Jewish and Dalton, it is suggested, was gay ( his biographer says otherwise). They are dead meat.

    I don't know enough about Tories to say more about them. There will, of course, be people prepared to serve. Look at Petain!

    BTW - Eden was wounded in the first war and earned an MC for carrying his wounded sergeant to safety. 2 of his brothers were killed. He lost his son in the second war. He was very much anti war but came to see the Nazi's for what they were.
  19. Maponus Pre-enlightened Despot

    Mar 21, 2009
    I will repost what I said in the New Order thread.

    Just to be super clear here. Hitler thought that Mosley and the BUF were the only people who could save British civilisation. Hitler was very aware they were a tiny minority since nearly every time he mentions them in Table Talk he also mentions that Mosley has nine thousand supporters ("many from the best families", since this was how Nazis thought British politics worked), and that is precisely the sort of thing he thought was super cool. The idea of one great man and his nine thousand elite followers taking over the Britain and forcing the blinkered ruling class to see reason, just in time to prevent Jewish bolshevism from taking over - this was just the kind of idea that fired Hitler's imagination. He would have absolutely forced a surrendering British government to accept a Mosley premiership, without doubt. He might have permitted the Conservatives to continue existing, as he believed that there was a natural possibility for a BUF-Tory alliance against Communism, but there's no doubt as to who he thought should be in charge. The man whose wedding he'd personally attended as a guest of honour, whose sister in law was his devoted groupie and whose movement his government had generously funded over many years, obviously.

    Mosley would also probably have the ear of the German elite, being as well-regarded by most of the Nazi-ups as by Hitler, so any illusions anyone could have about him being powerless would be fairly swiftly resolved by a few choice phone-calls to Berlin at any given time.

    But we're not allowed to say all this of course, because Mosley was a great man, our greatest Prime Minister we never had, and definitely told everyone he wouldn't have, which is obviously good enough for us. After all, we're the British, and our Fascists are the good type who'd never take power when offered it by their close ideological allies with whom they have direct and overt links.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2018
  20. ShortsBelfast Events, dear boy, events

    May 20, 2016
    Other than William Joyce, none of the people mentioned on this thread were Nazi sympathisers or fellow travellers (even Mosley is arguable, his views were much in line with Mussolini's corporaratism than with Hitler, anti-semitism was one of the few areas where he was closer to Hitler). Nor were the majority of Dutch, Czech, Danish (Danish Social Democrats actually got on rather too well with Werner Best) or French collaborators. The problem is, when your country is defeated and occupied by an enemy power you have two options:- 1) Flee into exile; and 2) Try to ameliorate the sufferings of the domestic population who you were elected to serve.
    Now there are collaborators and collaborators. Quisling was an outright traitor who undermined his country's defence efforts in wartime. The Communist collaborators with Stalin in Poland and Czechslovakia, Boleslaw Beirut and Klement Gottwald were moral degenerates who actually made Quisling look respectable. Some French, Romanian and Hungarian collaborators were virulent anti-Semites and enthusiastic supporters. Some were in it for money and social advancement. But some collaborators in occupied Europe were undoubtedly decent men who felt that in the circumstances they were doing the best they could for the local population by interceding for them with the occupying armies and secret police. Some (like Pucheu, Mitterand or Couve de Murville) would no doubt argue that they were playing along until an opportunity to rise up against their occupiers presented itself.
    We have the advantage of 20/20 hindsight and knowing that the Nazis would eventually be defeated. Contemporaneous individuals OTL and TTL would not have that knowledge and TTL not even that hope or expectation. It is easy saying "I will never compromise with the hordes of evil" when the hordes of evil are far off. When they have defeated your country's armies and have a garrison in your home town, your son is their prisoner of war, your daughter-in-law is half-Jewish and your nephew has done something the occupiers could potentially execute him for, your moral choices start getting a little more complicated. Particularly if the occupiers indicate that, with your co-operation, the restrictions on the local population can be eased a little and some of these problems made to go away.
    The Nazi secret service could be a little more subtle and expedient than that. Look at Heydrich's use of "Maison Kitty" OTL. Or how cultural figures like Richard Strauss were induced to co-operate with the regime because they had part Jewish in-laws and the SS didn't probe into St.John Amery's probable Jewish ancestry when he was prepared to lead a collaborationist force for them. A prominent political Jew like Morrison, Shinwell, Silverman, Hore-Belisha or Samuel would have no option to flee (or be liquidated), their Judaism is too well known for the Nazis to use them without political embarassment. But people like Leo Amery or Lord Rosebery would probably be advised that any partial Jewish ancestry could be overlooked if they co-operated. Likewise homosexuals can be blackmailed between threats of exposure or detention of their partner (with whom they have no connection in the public eye).
    I know Ben Pimlott concluded that there was no evidence of Dalton being gay but he was widely regarded as such in London society and a member of the older generation of my family was told by a well connected figure in the 1940s (Lord Donegall) that Dalton had a taste for cottaging.
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