Scorpions in a Bottle: 'For Want of a Nail' Expanded

Discussion in 'Alternate History Books and Media' started by SpanishSpy, Jun 24, 2013.

  1. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia
    Preface:

    I have recently finished reading Robert Sobel's For Want of a Nail, and also browsed through David Bar Elias' Timeline 191: After the End, and have wondered what could happen after the former's cutoff date of 1971, using the techniques of the latter. I have some interesting things planned, with a new role for the CNA as its inner demons attempt to sway its foreign policy. The USM, Europe, and Kramer Associates will not be neglected, either.

    Without further adieu:

    Scorpions in a Bottle: 'For Want of a Nail' Expanded

    The Militarist Wing of the People's Coalition in the Confederation of North America

    In 1971, after the uncovering of the Mexican spy ring in Michigan City and the breaking of North American-Mexican relations, CNA Governor-General Carter Monaghan ordered the Confederation Bureau of Investigation to being searching for possible subversive activity in Southern Vandalia, Northern Vandalia, Indiana, and the Southern Confederation, especially the S.C and Southern Vandalia, the confederations closest to Jefferson. Monaghan also ordered CNA military forces to begin fortifying the border with Mexico along the Arkansas river in light of minor incursions by seemingly rogue Mexican troops.

    Mexican President Raphael Dominguez denounced the "warmongering efforts of these traitors to the United States," but refused to reinstate relations with the CNA. As a reaction, the border between the countries, once the largest minimally defended borders in the world, was sealed by the CNA under Council approval.

    Within the Grand Council, a Southern Confederation People's Coalition councilman by the name of Theodore Worden had become the leader of a vocal faction of his party, shared by several members of the Coalition especially opposed to the Mason Doctrine. People's Coalition stances on foreign policy were already mildly hawkish, something greatly emphasized in Worden's rhetoric. The CNA had nothing to feel guilty about regarding the Global War, and rather should enjoy its role as the world's dominant nation (Kramer Associates was another matter entirely), according to Worden.

    Worden did not stop at mere enjoyment of prosperity, however. Since the country remained at peace while so many other 'lesser' nations were dragged in for what he felt were petty reasons, Worden preached the need of the CNA to patrol the world and "keep it safe for peace, and end war as we know it." Controversially but not without support, Worden campaigned for the development of the CNA nuclear arsenal and applauded former Governor-General Perry Jay's detonation of a device in Manitoba.

    With the various occurrences regarding Mexico, Worden's particular brand of nationalist politics surged in popularity nationwide, even in areas dominated by the Liberal Party. Both the Liberals and the Peace and Justice Party branded Worden a 'hate-monger,' to which he replied, famously, that, he was "not a spreader of hate, but of reason. The political systems of other nations, especially that of the United States of Mexico, are inherently flawed and lead to nothing but slaughter and dictatorship. Our system, our democratic system, is superior in every way and must be spread for the betterment of humanity."

    Worden also campaigned for increased CNA union with the United British Empire, citing a shared ancestral tie between the two nations. Worden was an outspoken proponent of incorporating the UBE into the CNA as a number of new confederations, stating that "with the power of the British diaspora and her allies, we can ensure peace for all mankind, British or not."

    The Indian rebellion of 1971

    On June 4th, 1971, a bombing attack killed several hundred in a crowded marketplace in Bombay, one of the major cities of British India, part of the United British Empire. Imperial forces attempted to discern the cause of the bombing, but had to deal with the pressing issue of reconstruction.

    A vitavision broadcast shown throughout the empire by Shamba Pandya, a Hindu nationalist, claimed responsibility for the bombing. Pandya's group, the Indian Liberation Movement, demanded British reparations for the German abuses in India during the Global War, and were also a voice of the growing independence movement for India.

    British governor of India, Cyrus Greenfield, announced a massive manhunt with the intention of finding Pandya and bringing him to trial in an Indian court. After this announcement, yet another bombing occurred in Delhi, killing at least one thousand, including several Indian police.

    Kramer Associate's Satellite Launch

    On October 22nd, 1971, Kramer Associates under President Carl Salazar launched a massive rocket from a facility in Kyushu, Empire of Japan, with support from the Japanese government and some assistance from British scientists working independently of the British government. After the Global War and the Kramer bomb detonation, Kramer Associates dedicated itself to a new technology capable of demonstrating the firm's power over the world: extraterrestrial demonstration of force.

    Under chief rocket scientist Marcus Lustig, the program had begun in 1967 with the intent of leaving earth orbit with an artificial satellite capable of broadcasting signals for vitavision networks. With the grants of several vitavision companies, Lustig was able to secure funding for the operation.

    As head of an international team, Lustig was able to finish a design by 1970. Carl Salazar himself approved the construction of the device, and with persuasion from the Japanese government (eager to boost tourism revenue for the economy) began building the site in Kyushu.

    On October 22nd, 1971, Lustig, Salazar, and Japanese Prime Minister Shotaro Ogino attended the launch of the Kramer rocket. As expected by Kramer calculators (developed during the Global War), the rocket succeeded in breaking out of Earth's atmosphere. Kramer Associates had reached the final frontier.
     
  2. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia
    Rebellion continues in India

    After the series of bombings in Delhi, governor Greenfield was forced to ask the majority-Indian parliament to institute martial law in the entirety of the British Raj, granted by Prime Minister Devan Mahajan. The UBE's military was dispatched from the Victorian capital of Rutledge (named for a 19th century Prime Minister) to Colombo, capital of Ceylon, and from there to New Delhi. The British forces under the command of General Morton MacDaniel, equipped with state-of-the-art warmobiles and airmobiles, began their deployments to Bombay, Delhi, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Karachi , and other locations.

    These forces were almost immediately attacked by an increasingly popular Indian Liberation Movement, ready to throw off the yoke of the imperial power that kept them in bondage, or so they percieved. The British believed that united, the Empire would be able to stand tall and pround among the world stage, from Australia to India, from Victoria to Guyana.

    Royal Navy ships also began relocating to various Indian ports in case of other acts of terrorism by the ILM. This fleet was led by Admiral Andrew Carruth, a veteran of the Global War in the fight against Germany. British battleships began patrolling the Indian coast with orders to strike against any attack by the ILM on the Royal Navy.

    In early 1972, an ILM fanatic rigged a motorboat with explosives and rammed it into the HMS Edinburgh, sinking it off the coast of the port of Karachi. Copycat attacks occurred off the coast of other Indian ports on British naval forces.

    These attacks were spurred on by radio broadcasts in Hindi and other Indian languages by the ILM, lead by chief media director Damodara Chiranjivi Patil. Patil encouraged similar attacks on British military forces, naval ships, and UBE nationals entering India on business trips, tourism, etc.

    In these broadcasts, Patil denounced not only the British, but also two other powers: the German Empire and the Confederation of North America. Germany he blamed for invading India during the Global War, causing the deaths of several million Indians. The Confederation of North America he blamed for doing nothing in the face of global tragedy. He especially hated the People's Coalition and Perry Jay; he grudgingly respected the administration of Governor-General Richard Mason while he was in office.

    These broadcasts led to yet another terror attack, this time on a group of Australian tourists visiting the Taj Mahal in Agra. The tourists' locomobile was hijacked at gunpoint by ILM insurgents, taken into a base in the forests of Uttar Pradesh, and held hostage, with their presence revealed by Patil.

    The "Taj Mahal Kidnapping," as it rapidly became known, provoked a massive response by the UBE military forces in Agra. Warmobiles were rapidly deployed into the forests to find the insurgents, many of which were destroyed via landmines set to harass forces which tried to remove the ILM from the forests.

    One of these bombs detonated as one British warmobile was being filled with additional fuel (it had run out and had to call via radio for additional vulcazine), set the fuel on fire, and caused the warmobile and the barrel it was being filled with to violently explode. Uttar Pradesh was in a drought season at the time, and the forest also went up in flames. Firefighters from Agra had to be called in to put out the blaze.

    As firefighters and additional warmobiles and UBE infantry arrived on the scene, an area of several kilometers had already been burned. UBE infantry were quick to notice ILM insurgents watching them, and proceeded to pursue them into the jungle. Eventually, British forces found the campsite where the Australian tourists were being held. Before the British could do anything, the ILM insurgents shot all the hostages and left them for dead and the camp abandoned. Two adults and three children had died.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2013
  3. Stahlheim Prussian Junkers For Clinton

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2013
    Have you heard of For All Nails?
     
  4. Johnny Pez Basenji Wrangler

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2010
    Location:
    McKees Rocks, PA
    This sounds a lot like the doctrine of the Moral Imperative from around the turn of the 20th century. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if Worden and his followers called their ideology the New Moral Imperative and looked back on Councilman Thomas Kronmiller and Professor Henry Newton as intellectual forebears.

    Also, though Sobel never mentions it, 1971 would be a presidential election year in the USM.

    Here I have to question your assumptions.

    In the first place, why would Indian nationalists demand reparations from the British for German atrocities? It would be like Filipinos blaming the Bataan Death March on the Americans.

    In the second place, it's pretty clear from Sobel that India is not under direct British rule. India was a founding member of the United Empire in 1901, along with Australia and New Zealand, which strongly suggests India enjoyed at least as much self-rule as those other members. Whatever government emerged in India from the Global War, whether pro-German or pro-British, would be run by the Indians themselves. There would be no Indian independence movement, because India is already independent.

    Now, this sounds like just the sort of thing Salazar would do.
     
  5. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia
    This could indeed be an influence - but the intention was to be more of a militaristic doctrine. I have plans for Worden.

    What is the scheme for elections in the USM? Six years? (what it seems to be - is it unlimited terms?)

    And do CNA Governors-General hold office until a no-confidence vote? (The impression I'm getting)


    The logic was that they blame the British for dragging India into a war that was not their own, the Germans for invading, and the CNA for doing nothing.

    The office of 'governor' I created as essentially the OTL governor-general in modern-day Commonwealth realms. The UBE still provides military aid.

    I found out about it well after I had the idea for this. I want to continue this because I had some ideas that just worked.
     
  6. Johnny Pez Basenji Wrangler

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2010
    Location:
    McKees Rocks, PA
    I just spent an hour composing a reply to this post, only to have it go away when I tried to post it. It was a really good reply, too.

    Oh well.
     
  7. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia
    Is there anything major I am overlooking? I am eager to know, especially from an expert on the book like you.
     
  8. Johnny Pez Basenji Wrangler

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2010
    Location:
    McKees Rocks, PA
    I'm going to try again, but I'm afraid this won't be as elegant as my original reply.

    1. Thomas Kronmiller was quite militaristic. He wanted the CNA to go to war with Mexico (see Sobel p. 233).

    2. Under the Mexico City Constitution of 1819, the President serves a six-year term, and there are no term limits. Andrew Jackson served three terms, and it was only age and poor health that led him to retire at the end of the third. Sobel doesn't mention Mercator drafting a new constitution, so presumably the Mexico City Constitution is still in effect. In that case, Dominguez' term ends in 1971 and he'll either retire or run for re-election.

    3. The Governor-General serves a five-year term concurrent with the Grand Council that selects him. However, he can also be turned out by a no-confidence vote, as Winfield Scott was in 1849. Also, in theory the G-G can dissolve the Grand Council and hold a special election, but none has ever done so.

    4. In 1933 the C.N.A.'s Foreign Minister told the Cabinet "Australia and India indicate they will not permit themselves to be drawn into a war which does not affect their vital interests" (Sobel, p. 339). So if India went to war with Germany, it was either because the native Indian government chose to go to war, or because the Germans launched an unprovoked attack on India. Either way, blaming the British makes no sense.

    5. You have Governor Greenfield declaring martial law througout India. This is not the action of a figurehead. Also, I can't help noticing that Greenfield is the only member of the Indian government you mention by name. It sure sounds like he's in charge.

    If you want to depict India as still being a British colonial possession ruled by a colonial administration, which seems to be the case here, you're free to do so, but that's not how Sobel described India.

    If you want to have a violent uprising against the Indian government, I would suggest a German-backed group that wants India to leave the United Empire and align itself with Germany.
     
  9. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia
    Noted. I will mention Kronmiller more when discussing Worden.

    Should be interesting, then. I will cover the USM elections in the next update.

    Hmm. I will remember this.

    The ILM views the current Indian government as a British puppet as they are still a part of the UBE, self-government or no self-government. They are hypernationalistic and hyperisolationist. They view any sort of collaboration with the British as treason.

    I have edited that passage to make it so that he asks an Indian-majority parliament to do so, and an Indian prime minister ultimately granting it.

    I will change my portrayal of India for the future. I picture foreign backing, but not necessarily German (I'm not spoiling it).
     
  10. Johnny Pez Basenji Wrangler

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2010
    Location:
    McKees Rocks, PA
    I don't want to keep harping on this, but an isolationist political group that wants to withdraw from the United Empire doesn't sound that radical to me. If that's what they want, then they ought to be a mainstream political party and not a radical terrorist group. A radical group would be one that wants to overthrow democratic government in India and carry out a radical economic or religious program.
     
  11. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia
    The Mexican elections of 1971

    President Raphael Dominguez of the United States of Mexico was, by 1971, an unpopular figure. He had desperately tried to prove Mexico's place in the world via the development of the atomic bomb, a project which, in all incarnations, had failed. His spies had been caught, his offers to foreign spies rejected, and now the possibility of war between the USM and the CNA loomed on the horizon. Various elements of the Progressive Party, the party of Mercator and Dominguez himself, were becoming rapidly unsatisfied with Dominguez's performance, and his nomination for reelection seemed unlikely.

    However, the voice of the Secretary of War, former President Vincent Mercator, compelled several voices in the Progressive Party to support Dominguez. At the 1971 Progressive Party convention in Guadalajara, Mercator gave a rousing speech in favor of Dominguez, and announced yet another surprising announcement: at the conclusion of the election, Mercator would retire from the position of Secretary of War. He was 66 and in ill health, and, in his words, "no man to guide Mexico into the future. We need new blood."

    However, Dominguez was challenged by one upstart assemblyman from Puerto Hancock by the name of John Paul Lassiter. Lassiter was one of the early Progressive stalwarts, being among the garrison commanders that overthrew Alvin Silva in 1950, preventing the accession of Paul Suarez to the presidency, and serving in the Mexican Assembly for Puerto Hancock after that. However, while loyal to Mercator, Lassiter highly disliked Dominguez and had opposed his nomination in the 1965 elections.

    During the Guadalajara convention, Lassiter offered himself as an actually effective alternative to Dominguez, and promised the completion of a Mexican nuclear weapon by the end of his first term. Lassiter was cheered on by delegates from California, Arizona, Jefferson, and Mexico del Norte, but was received less politely by those from Durango and Chiapas, and neutrally by Alaskans and Hawaiians.

    To the supporters of Lassiter, it was a great shock that the majority of delegates had indeed voted to renominate Dominguez as the Progressive Party candidate, a result cheered on by Mercator. Dominguez' renomination sparked a massive walkout from the Progressive convention by Lassiter's supporters.

    Within a week, Lassiter and his supporters met in Conyers, Mexico del Norte, to discuss an effective alternative to Dominguez. The main option became clear: nominate Lassiter as an independent and proffer sympathetic candidates for the Assembly. Soon after, Lassiter formally announced his candidacy for the Presidency of the United States of Mexico. Congressmen and Senators from all across Mexico also declared their candidacies for office to promote the policies of Lassiter.

    In his acceptance speech, Lassiter made an appeal to Mercator:

    "Vincent Mercator, my cherished friend and stalwart ally, it is my firm belief that you have made a terrible mistake in renominating Dominguez. He is an incompetent buffoon that knows nothing of statecraft. Let me run, Mercator, and prove that Mexico is still a democracy. The CNA, Britain, Germany, Siberia, and other nations of the globe have expressed skepticism of our commitment to the words of Jackson. Let us do so. Let us run. We make no claims to the outdated solutions of Suarez. We are revolutionaries just as you are. We will continue the revolution more effectively than Dominguez ever will."

    Mercator, upon hearing Lassiter's plea, debated on the measure of letting him run as an independent. Officially, the Progressive Party was the only party permitted to run candidates in Mexican elections, but Lassiter had spoken the truth. Foreign countries had indeed began to stop taking Mexico seriously as a democratic nation, as his Offensive of the Dove had shown. Mercator addressed the Progressive Party demanding that they let Lassiter run for the sole purpose of proving him wrong. "In a democracy, the people's desire shall elect the best candidate. We are the best party with the best candidate. Even if we let Lassiter run, we will win."

    Lassiter was thereafter to campaign as an independent. He traveled the country and decried what he saw as Dominguez' inefficiency. His popularity grew in Jefferson, California, Mexico del Norte, and Arizona, and even gained substantial minorities in the southern part of the country.

    Eventually, elections arrived. Both supporters of Lassiter and supporters of Dominguez went out in droves to support their candidates. The nation waited anxiously for an answer. Vitavision broadcasts attempted to project a victor for the election, and the results, even the projection team for Mercator himself, showed one result: Lassiter would win.

    And win Lassiter did, taking majorities in the Old Northern states and Alaska, and significant minorities elsewhere. In his inaugural speech in Mexico City, Lassiter promised "a new era for the Mexican people, an era of assertion and of self-respect. The world laughs at Mexico. I will make this country feared and respected."

    Within his first few months of office, Lassiter became controversial in world politics. A firestorm of controversy erupted when Lassiter accepted Shamba Pandya, head of the Indian Liberation Movement, in Mexico City for an official audience. Pandya and Lassiter found a good deal to agree upon, Pandya praising Mexican democracy and the ideals of Andrew Jackson, while Lassiter decried Britain as an imperialist power. In Lassiter's own words, "Britain has commenced genocide of so many peoples of this world. The CNA is founded upon the blood of Native North Americans, and Victoria and Australia are much the same. I may be of British ancestry myself, but my nation has not slaughtered the natives of its land. Indeed, many natives have served in high ranking positions in Mexico. The CNA, Britain, or any other major power cannot make that claim."

    However, during his meetings with Pandya, Lassiter refused to supply direct military aid to the ILM. Mexico was still war-weary, he contended, and would not be able to aid in the struggle for an independent India. Nevertheless, he called their struggle a noble one, and hoped for an India free of British domination.

    This show of support for Pandya enraged the United British Empire, leading to demonstrations in London, Sydney, Rutledge, Burgoyne, and New Delhi. British Prime Minister Gordon Perrow denounced Lassiter as a "backer of terrorists and an enemy of world peace." The British, Australian, Victorian, and Indian ambassadors joined the CNA in leaving Mexico City.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2013
  12. CaliBoy1990 A bright future is still possible! =) Donor

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2010
    Location:
    El Pueblo, East Texas
    Hey man.

    I'm liking what you've done here so far.....keep up the good work. :D
     
  13. Johnny Pez Basenji Wrangler

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2010
    Location:
    McKees Rocks, PA
    Two corrections: Mercator was 44 when he seized power in January 1950 (Sobel, p. 375), so he would be 66 in 1971. Still pretty old, and depending on his state of health, he might well decide to step down. Also, technically, Mercator and his allies overthrew Alvin Silva, since the coup took place the day before Suarez' inauguration.

    I also predict that there will be people like Councilman Worden who will claim that Lassiter's election was a sham, that his whole "independent candidacy" was stage-managed by Mercator.
     
  14. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia
    Heh, thanks. I need to get around to writing an update - I have a major plot twist planned.

    Corrected as suggested.

    He will definitely respond poorly to this development - Worden and Lassiter are opposites, Worden staunchly pro-empire while Lassiter is a raging anti-imperialist.

    Things will be getting interesting shortly.
     
  15. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia
    The Beginnings of the Haste to Space

    After launching of Kramer Associates' extraterrestrial satellite in 1971, the world was put into a frenzy of curiosity about the final frontier. The satellite, known as the Bernard Kramer, was now transmitting vitavision communications worldwide for various telecommunications companies owned by Kramer Associates. In the powers of the world, this was shocking. Kramer Associates had already outclassed them with the detonation of the world's first atomic bomb, and again they reached a new frontier before any of them.

    Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Gordon Perrow was shocked at the launch, noting that many scientists had thought that escaping Earth's atmosphere was an impossibility. Perrow was currently in dire electoral straits, as his Whig party was in coalition with the liberals who wanted him out of office. To boost his popularity, Perrow ordered the creation of a British satellite program, with a launch site begun in British Guyana.

    The CNA was also incensed, with various councilmen, especially from the People's Coalition and even more pronounced among the followers of Theodore Worden's New Moral Imperative, demanding that the CNA begin its own satellite program. Under partisan pressure, Governor-General Carter Monaghan made it a part of his goals for his administration. The motion was passed among sternly partisan lines in the Grand Council, Liberals voting against it and the Coalition voting for it. Since the Coalition had a majority, the motion passed.

    The CNA launch site began to be constructed in the area of the Cape of Currents, Georgia, Southern Confederation, under the urging of Theodore Worden, himself a southerner. Worden had connections with the CNA's scientific elite, especially among physicists, astronomers, and military scientists who supported his pro-weapons development stances. The Cape of Currents in particular was recommended as it would allow rockets to take advantage of Earth's rotation to achieve liftoff, and the Atlantic Ocean would permit easy recovery if rocket launches would fail.

    Upon learning of the Kramer satellite launch, Vincent Mercator, former Secretary of War of the United States of Mexico, also demanded the creation of a space program to rival that of Kramer Associates. Mercator is on the record as saying that "Kramer Associates, Mexico's longtime nemesis, has reached for the stars. We cannot let them, nor can we let the CNA or the UBE or Germany, reach space again without being accompanied by Mexico. We are a powerful nation, among the most powerful in the world, and this is what we must do to continue in that status."

    John Paul Lassiter, President of Mexico during the time of the satellite launch, agreed with his former rival, and created the new Department of Extraterrestrial Affairs (DEA) to expedite the creation of a Mexican satellite, under the new Secretary of Extraterrestrial Affairs Martino Ramirez, a physicist by training and accomplice and student of William Chron, the reformer of the USM's educational system and associate of Vincent Mercator. Ramirez immediately began formulating plans for a satellite launch in cooperation with physicists at the University of Mexico City. Plans for a satellite launch facility were written up to eventually be made somewhere in the Yucatan peninsula.

    The final major power to begin a satellite program was the German Empire under Chancellor Reinhold Kiermaier, who, despite the various anti-German riots in the Empire's puppet states, created a German satellite program to compete with the other nations of the world. However, internal matters proved more important for the time being.

    The Kiermaier Reforms and the Greater German Empire

    Chancellor of the German Empire Reinhold Kiermaier was elected during a period of unrest within the puppet states of the Empire, such as France, the Netherlands, the Associated Russian Republics, and Arabia. Riots in Moscow, Paris, Jerusalem, and Amsterdam were quickly becoming costly for the Empire to deal with. The public of Germany itself was beginning to question the necessity of keeping the puppet states under Berlin's control.

    Kiermaier, to the contrary, saw the necessity of keeping Germany's enemies weak, but also that the costs of direct occupation were indeed taking a toll on the German economy. Kiermaier met with the leaders of the various puppet states, but their reactions were unilaterally in favor of independence. Kiermaier then saw a third alternative that he felt would both pacify the puppet states and retain German military power in Europe.

    In March of 1972, Kiermaier called delegations from France, Russia, Arabia, and the Netherlands, among others, to Berlin for a conference regarding their future status. Kiermaier, with the Emperor's blessing, had begun the formation of the Greater German Empire, incorporating the various puppets into one united Germany. The delegates from the puppets were incensed at the thought of outright annexation, but Kiermaier promised them something that satisfied them: they would each retain control of their domestic affairs in a way that permitted their own governments to continue under whatever republic or monarchy they had previously, and would also gain seats proportional to the population in the German Diet. However, the central government in Berlin would have ultimate control over foreign affairs and the military.

    To pacify the delegates at this conference, Kiermaier is on the record as saying:

    "I fully expect that, one day, there will be a non-German chancellor of the Empire. We are indeed equals here, equal in the eyes of God and in the eyes of the Emperor. Germany has merely brought us together, and together we may assure our continued safety and advancement in earthly affairs."

    On April 3, 1972, the Greater German Empire (or the Fourth Empire as said by some, after the Holy Roman Empire, the Germanic Confederation, and the German Empire), was proclaimed in a ceremony in Berlin with a meeting of the first Diet, with delegates from both Germany and the formerly puppeted territories. More muted celebrations took place in the capitals of the former puppets. To allay fears of the French public, French President Jean-Baptiste Tremblay, a known supporter of the Germans, commemorated the occasion with a speech cheering the measure, an excerpt of which said:

    "It pains me to admit that France is no longer a major power on the world stage, no matter how much we wish the opposite were true. The best we can do to influence world affairs is to make our voice known in the Berlin Diet and attempt to influence the decisions of the Chancellor. The same can be said for Russia, Arabia, and the Netherlands."

    A close look at the celebrations and the early administration of the Greater German Empire shows that Kiermaier indeed intended the new government to give an equal say to the puppets. This is most apparent in his choice of cabinet ministers, appointing Frenchman Alphonse Bernard to Commerce Minister, Russian Vladimir Lebed to Interior Minister, and Dutchman Jan Pietersen to Agricultural Minister. This cooperation was tested during the early months of the Empire, and the constituent nations seemed at least begrudgingly accepting of the new order.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2013
  16. Stahlheim Prussian Junkers For Clinton

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2013
    Is it just me or is Mercator eerily prophetic of Vladimir Putin?
     
  17. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia
    Can't say I noticed the resemblance before, but looking back on it, they do seem quite similar.
     
  18. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia
    The Early Lassiter Administration

    As he promised during the 1971 election season, Vincent Mercator, Mexican Secretary of War during the Dominguez administration, stepped down from his position during the inauguration ceremony of Dominguez' successor, John Paul Lassiter. Despite their initial enmity during the election, Mercator congratulated Lassiter during the ceremonies in Mexico City, praising him as a ''visionary new leader for the United States.'' Dominguez was noticeably irritated when his ideological backer praised his rival, but he could do nothing; the people had spoken, and Lassiter was their choice.

    Since Mercator was stepping down, a need for a new Secretary of War arose, and several candidates came submit their candidacies. Several applied, including various assemblymen and senators, but very few impressed either Mercator or Lassiter. However, a relatively younger man by the name of Ernesto Salmeron, currently in his early fifties and one of the original leaders of the rebellion against Silva and Suarez, and leader of the garrison from Chetumal, Chiapas, was chosen as Mercator's successor as Secretary of War.

    In March of 1972, a letter cosponsored by the local territorial administrations of Martinique, Saint Thomas, Saint Croix, and Saint John, all under Mexican control since the Hundred Days' War, sent a petition to the Mexican Congress asking for the four islands to be united as one state in the Mexican union. The delegate, Keith Christian, argued passionately for the islands' admission as the Mexican Antilles. Lassiter, seeing a possibility to earn more supporters in Congress, urged the admission of the Antilles as a state. A vote in both the Assembly and the Senate resulted in a majority approval of the measure, and the Mexican Antilles were admitted to the United States of Mexico.

    To fulfill his campaign promises, Lassiter moved increased amounts of Mexican money to the atomic bomb program, currently based in the deserts of Mexico del Norte. The major problem that had plagued the program under Mercator and Dominguez was a lack of qualified scientists. Under Lassiter, the Mexican Department of Education run by Secretary Marco Mata promised any university that was able to produce a nuclear scientist capable of proposing a theoretically workable bomb would received a massive amount of tax breaks and additional funds from the Mexican government.

    At the University of Conyers, one scientist was able to meet that challenge. An enterprising professor, recently back from physics and chemistry symposiums in Berlin, London, and Burgoyne by the name of Thomas McCarthy. McCarthy had gleamed enough nuclear knowledge from these events to develop blueprints for a small nuclear bomb, and was asking the University of Conyers to accept Lassiter's request. He said it would not be anywhere near the size of the Kramer bomb, but it would be a start. The University agreed and began advertising its services to the Mexican government, and McCarthy met with Lassiter in person in Mexico City.

    Lassiter immediately put McCarthy in charge of the bomb program at the new facility, dubbed Huddleston Nuclear Research Center, now under the newly created Bureau of Nuclear Energy, itself a part of the Department of Energy. McCarthy was placed at the head of the Bureau, and lauded as a man who would ''bring Mexico to a standing as a nation worthy of the respect of the great powers,'' as hailed by Mercator in an editorial to a Guadalajara newspaper.

    Upon his inauguration, Lassiter had inherited a tense border dispute with the CNA along the border between Jefferson and Southern Vandalia. An executive order signed by Lassiter gave the order to make absolutely no military action against the CNA, but to begin fortifying various military bases in case of a North American attack. The Mexican general in command of the border forces, Julio Recinos, warned Lassiter that there would likely be conflict if the backers of the radical CNA councilman Theodore Worden were to come to power in their neighbor to the north, and that this theoretical conflict would grow exponentially more likely if Worden or a like-minded individual were to gain control of the office of Governor-General.

    Relations with the CNA had never been worse since the Rocky Mountain War. The discovery of the Mexican spy ring in Michigan City had led to a recalling of ambassadors, and Lassiter's open support for the Indian Liberation Movement in India (part of the United British Empire) had decreased his popularity in the CNA even more. To spite the USM, CNA Governor-General Carter Monaghan approved a trade embargo with the country, severely damaging the merchants of the Mexican Old North. Various economic leaders within the country urged Lassiter to either end this period of hostility with the CNA or find an alternative.

    Lassiter, pushed in that direction by the CNA's refusal to even consider talks, chose an alternative. In July of 1972, he called a meeting of delegates from Porto Rico, Cuba, New Granada, Rio Negro, Quito, Peru, Guatemala, Brazil, the Argentine, Santiago, and Cayenne to form the Greater American Free Trade Agreement (GAFTA), designed to break down tariffs and promote free trade between the countries of the agreement. Urged on by Mexican business leaders promising investment in the infrastructures of these nations, the delegates hammered out a document that contained the workings of GAFTA.

    The Mexican economy began to boom after the signing of GAFTA, allowing Mexican goods to flow into the nations of South and Central America, providing much-needed capital for Mexican businesses, merchants, and shipping companies. The Mexican Dollar increased in value, ending a small period of inflation. Especially important was the opening up of New Granadan vulcazine markets, previously hard to access due to a vaguely assertive government (which in reality was submissive to Mexico City most of the time, but more isolationist members of the New Granadan parliament had severely restricted exports of vulcazine, restrictions lifted with the passage of GAFTA).
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2013
  19. Johnny Pez Basenji Wrangler

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2010
    Location:
    McKees Rocks, PA
    IOTL uranium was being mined in Utah back in the 19th century, and in Arizona from 1918, as a byproduct of vanadium mining. Presumably Kramer Associates would have been mining vanadium in the U.S.M., and producing uranium as a byproduct.

    Also, Sobel makes it clear that the major problem facing the Mexican bomb program was lack of qualified scientists. Most of Mexico's scientists were Kramer employees who fled the country in 1951 when Mercator nationalized K.A.'s Mexican subsidiaries (p. 394).

    Until the Japanese conquered it in 1947 during the Global War (p. 360). Since then, Siberia has been a Japanese ally.
     
  20. SpanishSpy A.K.A Dick Cheney

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2012
    Location:
    Arlington, Virginia

    All edited as suggested.