The Anglo-Saxon Social Model - The Expanded Universe

Soccer: Women's World Cup and leading domestic leagues
Women’s football has been played in the United Kingdom for over a century, sharing a common history with the men’s game.

In the nineteenth century the sport was relatively widespread, with a Scottish side known as Mrs Graham’s XI being formed in the 1870s. The first game between Mrs Graham’s XI and a team of English women was played in May 1881. A team would then be set up in England, called the British Ladies Football Club, by Nettie Honeyball. The two teams (Mrs Graham’s XI having changed their name to Edinburgh City in 1895) still exist today and remain amongst the most popular and successful women’s football clubs. At this time, the players still used pseudonyms and were under the recurrent threat of being closed down by the English and Scottish FAs.

The sport enjoyed a brief period of heightened popularity after Britain entered the Great War in 1917, with the 1917-18 and 1918-19 seasons of the men’s game being cancelled. Attendances skyrocketed and some teams became so popular that they were deemed a threat to the returning male teams. Crowd trouble was used as an excuse to cancel all women’s games in 1921 and women’s teams were expelled by the English, Scottish, Welsh and Irish FAs. As a result, the Ladies Football Association was formed, taking authority for football over the whole United Kingdom (ironically, prefiguring a move that the men’s game would not make for over forty years) and playing the Women’s Challenge Cup from the 1921-22 season.

Played in four conferences (in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland), the winners of each conference went on to a knock out tournament culminating in a grand final. The grand final was, in practice, always contested between an English and a Scottish team, with Preston Ladies and Stewarton Thistle being two successful clubs alongside the traditional powerhouses of BLFC and Edinburgh. The tournament attained a degree of popularity in bohemian circles for its supposed upending of gender roles, with notable members of the Bloomsbury Group such as Vanessa Bell, Virginia Woolf and Molly MacCarthy being regular attendees at matches.

Once more, global conflict would provide an unexpected boon for the women’s game, with the men’s game once more cancelled at the end of the 1939-40 season. The number of women’s clubs and spectators expanded greatly and, despite a decrease, remained healthy after the return of men’s football in 1946. During this time, the women’s game was highly regarded for its tactical sophistication, with its lower emphasis on physicality resulting in more attractive and tactically innovative play. The game became a home for unconventional thinkers from the men’s game, with Vic Buckingham being perhaps the most famous such ‘refugee.’ Buckingham managed Lewes from 1949 to 1953 (winning the Challenge Cup in 1951-52) before moving to Arsenal, where he would revolutionise the men’s game with his “Total Football.” At the time, the women’s game was also considered more family friendly, with less violence, no sectarianism and smaller, safer grounds. Many regard the influence of the women’s game as being one of the prime catalysts behind Walter Winterbottom’s substantial reforms to the British men’s game after 1958.

The sport expanded progressively until it was finally able to support a whole league of full-time professional clubs beginning in the 1971-72 season. Currently, there are 26 professional clubs in the United Kingdom. These clubs compete in the Challenge Cup, which is divided into the 12-team Premiership and the 14-team Championship. The winner of the Championship is promoted to the Premiership, replaced by the bottom placed team in the Premiership. Both leagues are round-robin leagues with the top four of the Premiership advancing to a play-off competition culminating in the Grand Final. Most clubs are unconnected to men’s teams, with the Arsenal Ladies (founded during the World War and kept alive through Buckingham’s impetus in the 1950s) being a notable exception.

The Challenge Cup is one of the three most prestigious women’s football leagues in the world, along with the All-Nordic Women’s League in the Nordic Union and the American Soccer Championship in the United States. Football has been popular in the countries of the Nordic Union for some time, with there being a women’s league since 1924. The sport developed later in the United States, in comparison with the men’s game, and the ASC would not be established until 1979. Since then, the passage of the Eighth Amendment to the US Constitution (the so-called ‘Equal Rights Amendment’) in 1972 ensured that there has been equal funding and training facilities for men’s and women’s youth and college teams, ensuring that the US national team has had a substantial fitness and conditioning advantage over its competitors.

At international level, the Anglo-Nordic Cup was contested every summer from 1954 to 1986 (with the exception of summers holding a World Cup) between Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Iceland and the national teams of the four British Home Nations. From 1986 onwards, the format was changed to the Tri Nations, contested between the United Kingdom, the Nordic Union and Italy. In the western hemisphere, the Inter-American Cup is contested between the national teams of the United States, Canada, Mexico and Brazil. Both the Tri Nations and the Inter-American Cup are contested every summer where there isn’t a World Cup.

The Women’s World Cup has been played every four years since 1971. The United States has dominated the tournament since the introduction of professionalism in that country, winning five consecutive editions between 1987 and 2003 and having played in every final since 1983. This has prompted some concerns about the competitiveness of the international game, especially following the USA’s 5-0 thrashing of the Nordic Union in the final of the 2011 tournament.

Despite the limited number of nations in which the game is played professionally, women’s football is popular in a number of countries. Polls show that the WSC is the most popular sports league of 4% of the American public, with the league having an attendance of just under 1,000,000 people across all games in the 2020 season. In the Nordic Union, the Women’s All-Nordic League regularly sees larger attendances than the men’s equivalent, helped by the fact that the biggest men’s stars regularly move abroad at an early age. In the UK, the Challenge Cup is regarded as the country’s fourth most popular competition (behind the Premier League, the Rugby Premiership and the International Cricket League but ahead of the domestic cricket County Championship) and total crowds for the 2019-20 season were nearly 750,000.

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So read this on a whim and I like it. However the Queen Mary sinking is straight up impossible unless that sub was at least cruiser size.
No Titanic ITTL so QM’s internals are vastly different - otherwise I agree OTL QM would have split that sub in half and carried on fine.
There's literally no internal subdivision she nor any other major liner going back to the 1870s had that would cause a sub to be able to sink her. Titanic as built would've laughed off the collision. Unless Cunard TTL literally built her without any watertight compartments but IIRC every Cunard ship since the first one had them.
There's literally no internal subdivision she nor any other major liner going back to the 1870s had that would cause a sub to be able to sink her. Titanic as built would've laughed off the collision. Unless Cunard TTL literally built her without any watertight compartments but IIRC every Cunard ship since the first one had them.
I somewhat agree, but OP has put it in his timeline so we will have to accept it was a ‘perfect storm’ moment- perhaps an engine did blow?

Would be an interesting discussion for the Ocean Liner thread though rather than clog up here?
Soccer: EURO 2020, United Kingdom squad
In honour of OTL's Euro 2020 (R.I.P.) here is the United Kingdom's squad for TTL's tournament. (For those interested, I'm butterflying COVID-19 away completely TTL, if for no other reason than on the original thread I continued up to 2030 without mentioning it.) If anyone can correctly guess which OTL nation I used as the basis for this then you will win a prize.

Hope everyone and their family's are doing as well as possible.

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Any chance that COVID-19 isn't a thing ITTL? If so, can I move there?
Yes, I've butterflied away COVID-19. I'm afraid I don't really have a clear reason how it was butterflied and this decision is mainly driven by the fact that on the original thread I continued the narrative up to 2030 and, for obvious reasons, never mentioned COVID-19 at all.

So, yeah, if you can find a gateway please feel free to take up residence TTL. Just make sure you leave a note so that I can follow you
Yes, I've butterflied away COVID-19. I'm afraid I don't really have a clear reason how it was butterflied and this decision is mainly driven by the fact that on the original thread I continued the narrative up to 2030 and, for obvious reasons, never mentioned COVID-19 at all.

So, yeah, if you can find a gateway please feel free to take up residence TTL. Just make sure you leave a note so that I can follow you
If I am offer a no-prize answer? Simply the China ITTL does not allow the sale of live animals alongside meat in open air markets. Do that and COVID-19 does not happen.
Benelux Union
Massive pre-emptive apology for the uneven nature of the maps. I'm still only skilled enough to have to use whatever is already on Wikimedia Commons...

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The Benelux Union is a transcontinental federal country spread over Southeast Asia, Oceania, Europe, the Caribbean and South America. At 2,144,538 square kilometers (828,010.8 square miles), is the 13th largest country in the world. With a population of over 298,000,000, it is the world’s 4th most populous country as well as the most populous Muslim-majority country. Java, the world’s most populous island, is home to just under half of the country’s population. The nation’s capital is the Hague and its largest city is Batavia-Jakarta, the 2nd most populous urban area in the world.

The sovereign state is a constitutional democracy which mixes monarchical and republican elements. It has 14 constituent countries, all of which have a high degree of internal independence, and a ceremonial head of state, called the Supreme Head, that rotates every five years between seven constitutional monarchies. The country shares land borders in Europe with France, the Rhineland and Hanover, in Oceania with Sarawak, Papua New Guinea and East Timor, and in South America with French Guiana, Brazil and the West Indian state of Guyana. It’s culture and people are highly diverse, as evidenced by its national motto of Una in diversitate (“unity in diversity”) and by its eleven official languages.

Historically, the European Benelux countries are part of an area known as the Low Countries. Following the end of the Western Roman Empire, the region became the epicentre of the Renaissance of the 12th century and was a prosperous and cosmopolitan region for several centuries. During this time, it served as the battleground between many European powers, including the Habsburg Empire, France and Great Britain. By 1830, the majority of the region was divided between the Kingdom of Belgium, the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg (the latter of whom were, at the time, in personal union).

The Southeast Asian and Oceanian Benelux countries have been part of valuable trading networks since at least the 7th century. Politically the region was dominated by the Srivijaya and later Majapahit Empires, who traded with entities from mainland China and the Indian subcontinent. Local rulers gradually absorbed foreign influences and from early centuries Hinduism and Buddhism flourished alongside one another, while Sunni traders and Sufi scholars brought Islam from the 13th century.

The first Europeans arrived in the archipelago in 1512 and soon the Dutch East India Company was predominant. However, only in the early 20th century did Dutch dominance extend to the entirety of what has become the Oceanian and Southeast Asian Benelux countries. The country was the site of intense fighting during the World War, with the Low Countries being occupied by Germany and the East Indies by the Japanese. Following the end of the war, the Low Countries remained under Commonwealth military occupation until they reached an agreement to federate as the Benelux Union (the name itself being a contraction of Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg) in 1954.

However, conflict would continue as nationalist and communist forces sought the indepence of the East Indies, resulting in an insurgent conflict that would continue until 1965, when the countries of Sumatra, Java, Borneo, New Guinea and Indonesia would join the Union as full members. The countries of the Antilles and Suriname, the remnants of the Dutch Empire in the Americas, would join as full members in 1966. In 1980, the country of Belgium split into Flanders, Wallonia and Brussels, completing the territorial evolution of the Benelux Union into its present form.

The Benelux is classified as an advanced economy by the International Clearing Union. It’s Gross National Product of ban5,381.3 billion makes it the eighth largest economy in the world. The country has large industrial and services sectors, which provide most of the employment, as well as a substantial finance sector (mostly in Europe), natural resources (mostly in the East Indies) and tourism industry (mostly in the Americas). Despite having some of the most densely populated regions in the world, notably in the Low Countries and Java, the country also has vast areas of wilderness, supports a wide range of biodiversity and is a world leader in environmentalism and conservation.

Since the integration of the pan-continental peoples in the Benelux, the country has developed a tradition of pillarisation and social tolerance. The Benelux ranks well in international indexes of press freedom, economic freedom, happiness and quality of life. At the Union level, since electing its first non-European Chief of Government, Mohammad Isnaeni, in 1974, the top of government has been dominated by East Indians, with 5 Javanese and 1 Bornean having served in the role.

Government of the Benelux Union is complicated and often impenetrable to outsiders. Each of the 14 constituent countries of the Union maintain separate parliaments and their own prime minister. Each of the country-level governments are responsible to their own electorates and are elected according to the traditions of their own countries, usually via a proportional parliamentary system with elections every 2-5 years.

The Union government is headed by the Chief of Government, and is responsible for coordinating the work of the 14 country governments as well as for military affairs, foreign policy and regulating the customs union between the member countries. The Chief of Government is chosen from the leader of the party who can form a government in the Union Assembly, based in the Hague and elected by the entire population of the Benelux, with seats being allocated proportionally among the countries. The Chief appoints the Union Council, a cabinet of three ministers for the joint responsibilities (finance, military and foreign policy) and a representative from each country government.

The head of state of the Benelux Union is the Supreme Head, an elective monarch chosen from the constitutional monarchs of the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Yogyakarta, Surakarta, Maluku and Pontianak. In practice, the position rotates between the royal houses through each five-year term. The position is entirely ceremonial, as is illustrated by the fact that only the Netherlands and Luxembourg continue to exist as constituent countries in the Union.

Demographically, the Benelux Union is one of the most ethnically diverse in the world, with the demography being roughly 8.4% white European, 0.3% black, 0.02% Amerindian, 35.9% Javanese, 5.4% Borean, 19.6% Sumatran, 28.9% Indonesian, 1% Chinese and 0.48% non-Benelux immigrants. The country is the world’s largest Mulim nation, with there being over 232,000,000 adherents to the religion, just over three-quarters of the population. However, most Muslims are concentrated in the East Indies and, in any event, the country is generally secular in its outlook, with religion, be it Christianity, Islam, Hinduism or Buddhism, playing little part in public life.

The ethnic, religious and cultural diversity of the Benelux Union is also apparent in its language politics, with there being over 700 living languages being spoken across the Union. Of these there are 12 languages that have been accorded the status of ‘Official Languages,’ meaning that they are the languages of the courts and government business across one or more country. Dutch is the official language in five countries (the Antilles, Batavia-Jakarta, the Hague, the Netherlands and Suriname) and Javanese is the most commonly spoken, by number of speakers. In recent decades, English has gained ground as an informal common language across all of the constituent countries, often in the form of a creolised language nicknamed “Benglish.”

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Nah, that is not a bad flag, certainly better than just another tricolour of stripes.
I meant more in the sense that it's just the OTL Benelux flag. I experimented with using the same background just photoshopping in the Garuda symbol of OTL Indonesia but the results were so bad I'd be immediately kicked off this website if I ever posted it
How come the Indonesians accept this?
I would say there are a couple of things that help this:
  1. TTL there aren't really "Indonesians" as such, there are Javans, Sumatrans, Borneans, New Guineas and Indonesians. So there's a certain degree of division there.
  2. The political structure of the Benelux leaves the individual countries pretty much allowed to conduct a lot of their internal affairs as they wish.
  3. The structures of the Lismore System has served to stimulate domestic industry within the non-European constituent countries so the discrepancies of living standards aren't nearly as stark as OTL.
  4. There's not really a sense in which the former Dutch East Indies are especially subordinated in this arrangement: they make up the vast majority of the members of the Union Assembly and have taken the majority of the top jobs in recent decades, simply by weight of demography. The relationship between the constituent countries thus isn't the kind of metropole-periphery relationship that we're used to in modern European Empires but closer to the relationship between different provinces of the Roman Empire.
Finally, I would also say that you're not the only person who is surprised that the Benelux has survived: plenty of people TTL are too. Each country has a separatist movement, which has greater or lesser popularity depending on circumstance. But by now people are more and more used to it simply by inertia if nothing else.
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Great Men: David Attenborough
Sir David Frederick Attenborough (born 8 May 1926) is a British politician, broadcaster and natural historian, most famous for his lengthy periods of public service in both government and the CBC. He is the younger brother of the director and actor Richard Attenborough and the older brother of the businessman John Attenborough.

Born in Isleworth, Attenborough attended Clare College, Cambridge and spent two years in the Royal Navy. Having left the Navy in 1949, Attenborough went to work at the CBC, where he remained until he entered Parliament as a Labour MP for Heston & Isleworth at the 1963 general election. He progressed quickly through the ranks and was appointed Energy Minister in 1965, at the age of only 38. He would hold the position for just over 11 years, until Labour was voted out of office in 1976. During his tenure, Attenborough worked closely with industry, trades unions and the Supply Ministry to develop the UK’s nuclear and renewable power infrastructure, while phasing out the domestic consumption of coal and oil.

Out of office in 1976, Attenborough collaborated with the incoming Liberal government, in particular the Environment Secretary Michael Heseltine and Food and Rural Affairs Secretary Russell Johnston, to produce the white paper ‘A Blueprint for Survival’ in December 1976. Advocating a fossil fuel-free UK by 2002, the paper was an important rallying cry behind the elevation of environmental issues to the top of the international political agenda in the 1970s and 1980s. Attenborough would be appointed Environment Commissioner to the Commonwealth Cabinet in June 1980, a position he would hold until 1990. He played a significant part in ensuring that the vast majority of UN countries signed up to the Shanghai Protocol in 1987, an international agreement that set dramatic targets to cut fossil fuel emissions in developed countries and set non-binding targets for developing ones. He also leant on the British government to set ambitious targets which phased out fossil fuel production for domestic use by 2000 and petrol and diesel vehicles by 2010, policies which were widely copied across the rest of the Commonwealth.

After his term as Commissioner expired, Attenborough returned to work at the CBC, being appointed Controller of CBC Two in 1990. However, frustrated with the administrative burden of the job, he resigned his role in 1994 to take up a role with the CBC Natural History Unit. He became the producer and narrator of the ‘Planet Earth’ show, a nature documentary which released series in 1999, 2004, 2009 and 2014. The biggest nature documentary ever made, ‘Planet Earth’ utilised state of the art technologies to develop a comprehensive picture of life on Earth. During this time the Natural History Unit also collaborated with the Wellcome Sanger Institute, among others, to produce documentary series on de-extinct animals, called ‘Walking with Beasts’ (2003) and ‘Walking with Monsters’ (2017). As well as producing these series, Attenborough also served as the presenter, gaining renown for his distinctive narration. For his various work with the Natural History Unit, Attenborough has won five CAFTAs. He retired from the CBC in March 2016.

Attenborough is widely considered a national treasure in the UK and Commonwealth, although he himself has dismissed the term. In 2002 he was named among the 100 Greatest Britons in a UK-wide poll conducted by the CBC.

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Indeed Sir David is a national treasure!

Glad his campaigning had such an impact ITTL.

Q- Given the tech level what’s the state of cybernetics, for medical, military, and commercial/cosmetic markets please?

Also how accepted are body mods eg tattoos, fur implants, permanent Orc tusks or elf ears?
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Afghanistan, officially the Kingdom of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country in Asia. Afghanistan is bordered by Pakistan to the east and south, East Turkestan to the northeast, Iran to the west and the Soviet Union to the north. Occupying 652,000 square kilometres (252,000 sq mi), it is a mountainous country with plains in the north and southwest. Kabul is the capital and largest city. The population is 32 million, mostly composed of ethnic Pashtuns, Tajiks, Hazaras and Uzbeks.

Human habitation in Afghanistan dates back to the Middle Paleolithic Era, and the country's strategic location along the Silk Road connected it to the cultures of the Middle East and other parts of Adia. The land has historically been home to various peoples and has served as the source from which a variety of peoples, including the Kushans, Saffarids, Ghaznavids, Mughals and Durranis, have risen to form major empires. The modern state is generally held to have begun with the Hotak and Durrani dynasties in the 18th century. In the 19th century, Afghanistan became a buffer state in the “Great Game” between the Russian and British Empires. The country fought two wars with the British Empire in the nineteenth century, which ended with Afghanistan under British suzerainty from 1879. A third war was fought in 1919, which resulted in the Treaty of Rawalpindi in August 1919, which ended the British protectorate over Afghanistan and finalised the border with British India (Pakistan after 1951).

Although formally free of foreign influence, Afghanistan saw a great deal of foreign direct investment in the 1920s, mostly from British and American sources, leading to vast economic development during this time and after the end of the World War. During the 74-year reign of Zahir Shah, the country saw a prolonged period of economic development, religious secularisation and political stability. A constitution was promulgated in 1973, removing most of the King’s remaining powers and transforming the country into a democratic constitutional monarchy.

Today, Afghanistan is a constitutional monarchy governed under a parliamentary system. It is a member of the International Clearing Union, the World Bank Group, the World Trade Organisation and the United Nations. As an active participant in UN peacekeeping forces, Afghanistan has contributed troops to the mission in Former Yugoslavia since 2009.

Afghanistan is classified by the International Clearing Union as a high-income country and has a “very high” ranking on the Human Development Index. The economy is dominated by agriculture, industry and services. Tourism is a significant source of revenue, with Afghanistan ranked among the top 20 most popular tourist destinations in the world. The Afghan government provides social security, universal health care and primary and secondary education. The Commonwealth, in particular Pakistan, is Afghanistan’s most important trading partner.