Slow Drift to War Europe 1984

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by Farmer12, Sep 14, 2016.

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  1. Farmer12 Well-Known Member

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    You suddenly had serious considerations on you lack of immortality and reality that death could be just around the corner. That does tend to concentrate ones attention.
     
  2. Jack Brisco NWA Powerhouse

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    Yeah, that was the most scared I ever was in my life until the day, many years later, that I got the diagnosis of a life-threatening heart problem. Better believe my attention was concentrated.
     
  3. sloreck Grunt Bear

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    @Farmer12 : Absolutely ITTL you have nuclear capable forces close to Australia and New Zealand that were not there OTL. The Yankee is obvious, the Juiiet may have one or two of the SSMs with a nuclear warhead. The Bears are probably SNA variants for ASW and/or anti-shipping variants and may have some nuke armed ASMs. ASW ships may have nuke armed homing torpedoes, not depth charges as a free fall depth charge is very likely to severely damage the ship that uses one, those were more for aerial use. Standard for Soviet subs was to have one, at most two nuke torpedoes. While those in theory could be fired against a land target they were low yield and the sub getting close enough to actually be within range of the docks at Sidney (for example) is going to be very tough. The Yankee is the big problem, followed by the Bears with ASMs and the Juliet.(1)

    (1) The missiles on the Yankee had 2400km range with a single warhead 1MT 2 km CEP, the Juliet missile had a 500km range and a 200kt warhead
     
  4. sloreck Grunt Bear

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    I believe it was Churchill who said nothing concentrates the mind so much as being shot at and missed
     
  5. Jack Brisco NWA Powerhouse

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    Yup. Dodged the heart bullet. Repaired and working fine today.
     
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  6. Farmer12 Well-Known Member

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    Glad to hear the heart was repaired, the nearest thing i ever had was being told i had diabetes and while it can be dangerous it can be dealt if your willing to put in the effort. But you only have one heart
     
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  7. Farmer12 Well-Known Member

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    This Yankee is a bit more dangerous, it carries R-27U (RSM-25) Those missiles mount three 200 Kiloton warheads with a range of 3000 kilometers.
     
  8. Jack Brisco NWA Powerhouse

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    Yeah, many good ways to deal with diabetes. Only one good way to deal with that particular heart problem - replace the bad valve.
     
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  9. Archangel Battery-powered Bureaucrat

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    What Farmer said.
     
  10. Farmer12 Well-Known Member

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    Heart valve operation, Glad it went well.
     
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  11. Farmer12 Well-Known Member

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    1pm Moscow The Politburo was finally getting a proper briefing on the current state of the economy. When the Economists entered the expressions on their faces were guarded. In fact, the only good news was the knowledge that Chebrikov had informed them that the desire of the Politburo was a complete and accurate explanation about what was happening to the economy. That meant they needed the Economists to tell the truth. That promise would hopefully protect them when they told the Politburo what the real economic situation was.

    The Economists began their briefing and as the briefing went on the news got worse and worse. The costs of the original Mobilization had been a massive drag on the Economy. It was survivable if the crisis did not last more than a few months. But the mobilization of the additional troops had been a double whammy. The newly mobilized troops had to be paid for, while at the same time the men pulled from the factories, farms mines and all the other jobs slowed the economy down even faster. It reduced the time that disaster would arrive from months to weeks.

    The simple fact was that the massive increase in the outflow of money from the Government to pay for the cost of the mobilization was draining the Government coffers. While the inflow of money was slowing down and in fact drying up. That meant that sooner or later the money flow would dry up and the Soviet Union would not be able to pay its bills. If the crisis lasted to long enough then the Soviet Union could have to make hard choices. Such as choosing between purchasing food or coal for the people of the Soviet Union. That meant the Politburo could have to decide whether the population of the Soviet Union to froze to death or starve to death. The economist where united in one thing the faster the crisis ended the better off the Soviet Union would be.

    The senior economist commented that possibly engaging in massive spending cuts would allow the Soviet Union more flexibility to work its way out of the crisis. Where the spending cuts would come from the economists refused to say, they stated that was a decision for the Politburo.

    The simple truth, was that the Politburo had not realized just how much money was being spent. Even worse was that the something had to be done fast to end the crisis. But even if they ended the crisis they may still run out of money unless they engaged in major spending cuts. What programs should be cut that was a discussion that no one really wanted. Once the economists had left the discussion began, the argument began.

    The Politburo now had a real problem, they could insist that the demands they had Gromyko make as negotiating stances to gain concessions from the United States were now essential demands to keep the Soviet Union from running out of cash. On the other hand, they could order Gromyko to make the best agreement he could and then bring the crisis to end. Then the Politburo could demobilize the military as fast as possible. Then after that they could make the needed cuts that would possibly allow the Soviet Union to survive this unexpected crisis.

    The problem would be gaining a consensus from the Politburo, that was going to be a real problem. The hardliners were not likely going to support the quick end to the crisis if it did the Soviet Union was not reimbursed for the costs of mobilization. But the soft-liners wanted the crisis ended. They knew that the United States and NATO would not agree to reparations. As for the centrists they were wondering which side to support and that would mean they would need to be convinced what approach to take.

    Chernenko decided to move a move, he suggested that first one of the economists who had briefed the Politburo was to be sent to brief Gromyko on that briefing. He also suggested that until the Politburo had decided which way to go Gromyko was not to make any concessions on the initial demands made by the Soviet Union.

    No one had a good argument to oppose what he had suggested so both of his suggestions were approved. The Foreign Ministry was ordered to send the latest instructions. Then the leader of the group of economists was ordered to come back into the room. When the man entered the room, he was visibly nervous. Chernenko quickly informed the man that he needed one of the economist go to New Delhi and brief Gromyko one what the Politburo had been told. The man quickly relaxed, and he volunteered to go himself. That done orders were sent out to arrange a for plane to take the man to New Delhi and also to make arrangements with the Indians for the planes arrival. With those decision made the Politburo ended the meeting with plans to meet again the next day. That would give everyone a chance to think about the new situation.

    The start of the Peace Conference was the big news of the day and Gromyko’s speech was reported and dissected. It took the rest of the world by surprise, no one had expected the Soviet Union to make such harsh demands. Some in the press condemned the demands. While other pointed out that this could just be the Soviet Union’s initial negotiating position. But it did give the NATO nations something to think about.
     
  12. Jack Brisco NWA Powerhouse

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    Here we go...
     
  13. Jack Brisco NWA Powerhouse

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    Thanks. Six-plus years now.
     
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  14. sloreck Grunt Bear

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    If that economist is a bachelor he may not make the plane back, if he has a family he'll come back. The money problem for the USSR is for stuff they have to purchase outside of COMECON. As long as its internal/ruble zone, they can make it work and within the USSR they have enough coal and oil to keep factories going and people from freezing. Food is another issue, what would happen is slaughtering of livestock to reduce the need fodder, which frees up more grain for bread etc. This is a temporary fix, because now you have to rebuild those devastated livestock herds which takes years...
     
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  15. Farmer12 Well-Known Member

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    Yes it starts but we need a few more pieces for the war to start.

    As for the damage to herd and flocks you are correct but what is worse is young breeding stock having to be slaughtered. That damages the herd for a long time as you rebuild the breeding stock with necessary quality and quantity of animals.

    My father raised cattle and one year he had to sell all of our Hereford heifers and my mother commented on the Honey color of their hair and the length of the white stripes that ran down their backs matching in length with box shaped hips for the ease in the dropping of calves. My father had definite tastes in the kind of breeding stock he kept in the herd. It was bit of a setback but not as bad as what will happen in the Soviet Union.
     
  16. sloreck Grunt Bear

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    I may have missed it, but has the USA begun to turn the wheels of the draft at this point - not calling anyone up or anything like that but local draft boards meeting, lists being prepared etc. Maybe decisions being made about what the criteria will be for various deferments and so forth. OTL one thing that would be done before the start button was pushed was that the draft would get the list of all the doctors in the USA from the AMA so they can know where they are, specialties etc which is the first step in calling them in.

    I wonder if the USSR has begun to have retired factory workers and others in occupations where young men have been called up to "volunteer" to go back to work to fill the gaps.
     
  17. Farmer12 Well-Known Member

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    The draft was started roughly end of June beginning of July but like everything it takes time to get the system up and running. Sometime mid August the first draftees will be called. As for the Soviet Union they have not called in the retirees. No one seems to want to make a decision about recalling the workers.
     
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  18. terv Well-Known Member

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    I assuming that the draft including the training units are ready to go, and that the failure of the peace meeting in india is going to cause the draft boards to start call ups in early august with the first batch of trainees starting at the end of the month. farmer does the soviet union have the money to pay for retirees to go back on the job.
     
  19. sloreck Grunt Bear

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    OTL the Army for sure had reserve units whose specific wartime role was to provide staffing for expanded training camps, several reserve bases would be used for training of draftees in addition to the expansion of existing training sites which had facilities in mothballs. I wonder if actual draft cards have been issued yet, the registration by mail had been going on for years however actual draft/ID cards had not been issued. OTL a lot of 18 year olds never registered, so I wonder how that will go - draft cards issued and spot checks or other mechanisms to ensure regiatration. Cross checking with drivers licenses etc?
     
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  20. Farmer12 Well-Known Member

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    As for issue with the draft it all depends on how fast things go from bad to worse.

    As for recalling the workers and being able to pay them well that is hard to say it all depends on what you prioritize your spending on. But they should be able with getting away with just paying the retirees their pensions until they get the payroll all straightened. Delaying paying the retirees full wages will allow the government a little more time but not much.
     
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