The Footprint of Mussolini - TL

At the end of the day though it’s the author’s TL and I respect his choices. If Sorairo didn’t want to cover it or change the popes then that’s his choice and it’s fine to make that choice. I’d rather have him write about what he’s interested. In the end this post criticizing one minor aspect of TTL, I hope is just considered to be in good faith. The TL is still very good and very engaging and worth the read IMO. And admittedly the Popes story wise don’t have that much of an impact compared to South Africa, America, the USSR, Italy, etc.
No problem, I fully accept my ignorance of my parents' faith when it comes to the ins and outs of Church policy in the 20th Century, beyond the generalities of the question of the Church's relationship with Nazism/Fascism/Communism. I was already having to study plenty of things I was beforehand completely ignorant about - Indian/Middle-East/African geopolitics. While I was okay with alternate UK/US leaders, I didn't even know where to begin when it came to alternate Popes so I played it safe.

If I had more time, I would have tried come up with different Popes as well.
 
ISOT scenario: OTL’s Vatican City, Pope and tourists included, was ISOTed to the Footprint of Mussolini universe circa 1962?

The church and toursts would are firstly shocked that fascism is not only just still exst but it is too respected ideology. But depending their ideological stance they probably can copy that quickly. They anyway would are really amazed with different world.
 
IIRC list of popes is same until John Paul II. IMO this is bit odd since I can't see Wojtyla becoming pope ITTL since Poland ws already free in 1978 and communism wasn't anymore around so there is not reason for Wojtyla's choice. John XXIII, Paul VI and John Paul I anyway make some sense I think. But I am pretty certain that OTL JPII should had been butterflied away.
Actually, this is pretty obvious (at least I guess) from the point of view of believing Cristians - the God is one and only, through all the alternate timelines, and Pope elections are inspired, if not outright directed, by God. So if God considered Wojtyła worthy to be a Pope OTL, there is no reason not to be worthy in TTL. People are inherently good or evil, and mere historical circumstances would not lead them astray from their path. Right?
 
People are inherently good or evil, and mere historical circumstances would not lead them astray from their path. Right?
Actually it's only certain branches of Protestantism, who believe in that kind of predetermination. Catholicism believes that to be a sinner or not is a matter of free will.
God is the same throughout all TLs, but the world isn't. So there's all kinds of potential reasons why God might direct the Cardinals elsewhere in TTL:
- In TTL someone even more worthy is alive who was dead in OTL.
- Wojtyla is just as worthy as in OTL, but someone else is also worthy and more needed.
- Wojtyla is needed more elsewhere.
 
Pretty intresting. Since Hungary doesn't fall to communism ITTL then Agagianian is more intresting. In toher hand I am pretty sure that by 1958 all of cardinals were already anti-communists anyway. Or was there any suitable Polish cardinal at this time? It would had been perfect showing of mid-finger to Moscow.
Yes it’s true that all cardinals were anti-communist IOTL and ITTL definitely. The closest was Alosio Lorschedier of Brazil who had well known sympathies with Liberation Theology, a radical form of Christian Socialism. However, I haven’t seen any evidence he was ever a supporter of the USSR or some other authoritarian regime like Cuba. Agagianian would be very interesting as I doubt the USSR would be very happy at the Vatican’s choice of a known dissident as Pope. The Polish cardinals were Eugeniuz Baziak and Stefan Wyszyński who from my read of the Wikipedia article was considered a hero and a spiritual leader in Poland. It’s not implausible for him to become Pope as he would be older and only have served two years less than the front runner in 1958 Giuseppe Siri. Both a Polish or Russian Pope would be a massive middle finger to the USSR and would be interesting.
I think that it is bit hard to get anti-fascist pope. Fascists weren't anti-church and anti-clerical unlike communists were. And some fascist nations, specaility Spain and Portugal, were very pro-church. Only way would be such pope becoming after fall of communism (around 1973 - 1975) when Addis Ababa is still in fresh memory and war in Ethiopia is still ongoing. Perhaps this pope could had taken critical stance with human rights issues and colonial war.
Yeah good point. Plus with a worse communist ideology ITTL they’d be willing to over look the dictatorships. To be fair I worded that part poorly. I was mostly thinking about encouraging democracy in Italy and Spain rather than calling for resisting fascism. But that also seems unlikely for the reasons you put forth. I could see more liberal cardinals opposing the Ethiopian War for being a colonialist war. Even conservatives such as Pius XI opposed colonialism (we know this from one of his statements written before his death condemning colonialism and other evils such as racism and anti-semitism). If it’s a Pope from Africa then the chances go up significantly. Even if they’re from Italy the Catholic Church even in the 30s opposed colonialism so I think that’s very plausible.
Yes, this is indeed writer's own decision. And pope issue is anyway small thing on TTL. And I guess that it is kinda hard to research alternate popes anyway. Since you get alternate pope, you are going to get alternate cardinals and so thins might go bit dfficult, speciality if this alternate pope manage appont enough of cardinals to dramtically shift next conclave. And of course this pope might die earlier or later than OTL John XXIII did..
That’s true. What I’m doing for the TL I’m writing is assuming most of the cardinals are similar to each other for simplicity. Not the most plausible thing to happen but it’s easier for a relatively minor part of the TL. Different cardinals would be very difficult for any TL that covers the papacy as one of them could be easily elected Pope. For simplicity sake just assuming most cardinals are the same works out fine IMO.
 
Something which I wondered about in terms of uniforms, how did the Free German Army tell apart their guys from a distance from the Wehrmacht Loyalists and the SS (because friendly fire is an issue) and vice versa for the Loyalists and the SS when dealing with the FGA ? Did they retain their Model 1936 pattern Feldbluse (now in a 'Lend Lease' version) whereas the SS and the Loyalists switched to a M44 feldbluse-esque design as the war dragged on?

Because if every German faction involved in this TL's WW2 dressed mostly the same, even with some insignia rules, (ie, no arm/breast/helmet eagle or Nazi imagery= FGA soldier, Breast Eagle and Nazi Eagle on Helmet = Wehrmacht Loyalist, Black Collar Tabs, SS runes on helmet, Sleeve Eagle and Black Shoulder Boards= SS-Mann ), there is still bound to be issues with friendly fire .

And speaking about being mistaken for SS, I wonder if the post-war West German tank corps in this timeline changed the color of their ceremonial uniforms as black uniforms are popularly associated with the SS in both this TL and OTL.
 
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Something which I wondered about in terms of uniforms, how did the Free German Army tell apart their guys from a distance from the Wehrmacht Loyalists and the SS (because friendly fire is an issue) and vice versa for the Loyalists and the SS when dealing with the FGA ? Did they retain their Model 1936 pattern Feldbluse (now in a 'Lend Lease' version) whereas the SS and the Loyalists switched to a M44 feldbluse-esque design as the war dragged on?

Because if every German faction involved in this TL's WW2 dressed mostly the same, even with some insignia rules, (ie, no arm/breast/helmet eagle or Nazi imagery= FGA soldier, Breast Eagle and Nazi Eagle on Helmet = Wehrmacht Loyalist, Black Collar Tabs, SS runes on helmet, Sleeve Eagle and Black Shoulder Boards= SS-Mann ), there is still bound to be issues with friendly fire .

And speaking about being mistaken for SS, I wonder if the post-war West German tank corps in this timeline changed the color of their ceremonial uniforms as black uniforms are popularly associated with the SS in both this TL and OTL.

Wasn't remaining loyalist Wehrmacht just incorporated to SS-Waffen? And perhaps FGA adopted bit more different uniform.

What's day to day life like in South Africa?

Similar than in North Korea.
 
Hmm, and speaking of which, I wonder if Mel Brooks ever did his Al Jolson and loudspeakers thing in TTL just like in OTL, only this time, he did it in a different theatre of operations to lure the Loyalists/W-SS defenders into a trap set up by the Free German Army and the US.
 
If there is, the villains will likely be the Yakuza, only for it to turn out they are ethnically Korean Yakuza members and consequently not the 'true' and 'honorable' Yakuza, who were the upstanding gentlemen who helped free Hokaidou, whereas it is assumed Korean members were at best indifferent to the struggle or outright hostile to Japanese interests. The 'real' (100% ethnically Japanese) Yakuza may even help them out - the reputation of Korea is about what OTL's Russia is ITTL so would meet little international anger.

Japan's relationship to the Yakuza ITTL is much closer to Indonesia's attitude to the Pro-West militias shown in the documentary The Act of Killing (2012). There are TV shows like the A-Team showing a Yakuza group doing the down and dirty stuff the police have to do but are too afraid to do, all while the police pursue the heroes.

The main effect has, of course, been more suffering for sex workers, businessmen and anyone who accidentally pissed off the wrong guy in downtown Tokyo.

Similarly, the Mob films of America often displayed the Mafia as valiant resistors of Italian Fascism, which led to them getting much more praise than they deserved.
Dunno if that necessarily works... The Yakuza IRL are either mostly ethnically Korean, like you say, or (the larger group) are burakumin - ie descendants of eta, people considered untouchable under Shinto/Buddhism because they worked in slaughterhouses, tanned leather and such. Up until the 1970s, there was this huge directory of burakumin families that companies circulated so they'd know who not to hire (which contributed to them going into organised crime).

Given this...I'd have more assumed that TTL's Japan, being a far more nationalist and old-school country, would be hugely against the Yakuza, and that there'd be a lot more campaigns carried out to arrest bosses, break up syndicates, etc. And that entertainment would show them less as 'honourable' gangsters and more 'mad dogs who need a bullet in the head'.
 
IIRC list of popes is same until John Paul II. IMO this is bit odd since I can't see Wojtyla becoming pope ITTL since Poland ws already free in 1978 and communism wasn't anymore around so there is not reason for Wojtyla's choice. John XXIII, Paul VI and John Paul I anyway make some sense I think. But I am pretty certain that OTL JPII should had been butterflied away.
He could still become pope to strengthen ties with the old Soviet bloc
 
Dunno if that necessarily works... The Yakuza IRL are either mostly ethnically Korean, like you say, or (the larger group) are burakumin - ie descendants of eta, people considered untouchable under Shinto/Buddhism because they worked in slaughterhouses, tanned leather and such. Up until the 1970s, there was this huge directory of burakumin families that companies circulated so they'd know who not to hire (which contributed to them going into organised crime).

Given this...I'd have more assumed that TTL's Japan, being a far more nationalist and old-school country, would be hugely against the Yakuza, and that there'd be a lot more campaigns carried out to arrest bosses, break up syndicates, etc. And that entertainment would show them less as 'honourable' gangsters and more 'mad dogs who need a bullet in the head'.
It was a consequence of the Ezo occupation - the Yakuza was the stated enemy of the Ezo state (because it provided a cover for what they really wanted to do, destroy Japanese identity on the island) which ended up turning the Yakuza not only into a seriously profitable organisation because they ran the smuggling trade between Japan and Ezo (including for the Communist regime as bribes) but the Ezo Yakuza inadvertently became the face of Japanese resistance on Ezo, with the Japanese Yakuza cashing in on that fact to help embolden their reputation.

It was an accident of history that the Yakuza had their reputation improved ITTL.


The Koreans aren't anywhere near the majority of the Yakuza even IOTL, and after the expulsions of Koreans following the country's complete fall to Communism, they make up an even smaller amount ITTL. Ironically, being in the Yakuza could actually enhance the reputation of Burakumin to Japanese society as long as they had some connection to the Ezo resistance.
 
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