To the Victor, Go the Spoils (Redux): A Plausible Central Powers Victory

The White regime was even more anti-German than the Reds in some ways. I don’t think they’d be boneheaded enough to refuse any German aid that’s offered, but that wouldn’t buy their cooperation with the Mitteleuropa project. The next generation of German elites is gonna be pretty hacked off whether the enemy is waving the hammer and sickle or the tricolor.
 
Protest and Rebellion Observing the Peace (July - September 1918)
wSZs4v6.png

Protest and Rebellion
Observing the Peace
July - September 1918

With the allies having thrown in the towel by early August and France having sought terms by the start of July, the shock of the war coming to an end came as bittersweet news throughout the warring empires.

In Germany, the news of France’s surrender was naturally met with elation and joy, with crowds of celebrating citizens being seen throughout the major German, Austrian and even Turkish cities. Yet the surrender of France did little in reality to actually end the war for your everyday German. While letters no longer came home from the western front speaking of the horrors of the conflict, the German and Austrian people were left with a strange sense of being adrift between their victory and the seemingly endless consequences that followed.

In Austria the logistics systems of the economy had largely already begun to collapse, while in both Austria and Germany the British blockade of the coast and the lack of a firm peace treaty compelling the French or any other defeated party to feed Germany meant that the country continued to starve. Demobilised troops from both empires soon found themselves wandering home into a land devoid of jobs and lacking any platform to voice their concerns, while Austria couldnt even demobilize due to the Italian advance.

While in Germany promises of political reform had already been made, offering universal or ‘staggered’ suffrage giving soldiers and other groups additional votes, Austria had made few clear commitments to reform and was a state so constitutionally chaotic that many of those with influence were far from being able to compel the Austro-Hungarian Government into reform.

In the allied states meanwhile, ironically the most adversely affected state would be Britain who had seen a gradual rise of annual striking workers rise from 10% in 1914 to 25% by 1918 - but continued to fight on. Having initially called for the war to continue in the Balkans, Italy and the Levant, British Prime Minister Lloyd George had resigned long before on May 10th and now Conservative Party leader Bonar Law had been tasked with picking up the pieces.

With the Italian and Balkan fronts out of the window, a debate in Parliament and Britain as a whole quickly ensued over what precisely to do now the war on the continent was essentially over. For the Conservatives the answer was clear; continue to prosecute the war until the Turks collapsed and the Germans agreed to a conditional and favourable peace - lest they starve. For the Labour Party meanwhile, who had long withdrawn from the coalition in April, voices demanding not just immediate end to the war, universal suffrage and elections, but also revolution, were rapidly growing.

The French Haze
Far from revolution though, Britain was peaceful compared to the likes of France and Italy. She continued to chug along, unclear of the nation’s destination but determined to see through to the finish whatever that destination would be. Parliament, aligned firmly behind Bonar Law who everyone knew needed to win something, anything, to defeat Labour in the surely upcoming elections, firmly backed whatever the Prime Minister wished, and with a firm Government majority the country had no sense of backsliding yet. Britain's former allies though met the news of the armistice with different but similar responses.

In France, a public utterly exhausted from the war reeled in shock at the defeat, but did not immediately react. Protests did rise, and marches by veterans organisations and small paramilitary bands of reservists did erupt throughout July and August in major French cities, but by and large the country waited with baited breath for the result of peace negotiations. This was in part because many Frenchmen did not believe Germany had agreed to peace, and because despite their shaken faith in the US commitment to the war, some political groupings naively just assumed the Government was just buying time to strengthen other fronts.

While the August general armistice shattered this illusion, by then the French people had largely reconciled themselves to the defeat. Now defeated in the last two major wars with Germany, the Reich felt unassailable and for many Frenchmen the Boulangerist irredentism that sprung up after the Franco-Prussian war now felt more hopeless than emotionally uplifting. Instead, many Frenchmen simply abandoned faith in their country’s might - and looked to uplift their own personal circumstances. Trade Union membership in France boomed with the highest ever recorded number of sign-ups through July and August 1918, while strikes began to grow across the country - particularly in the war-battered north.

Despite this, France too was far from revolution. A well industrialised state with a large but not dominating trade union movement and industrial centres that largely sat in the occupied north, the country was paralyzed behind a wall of German boots and unable to lash out at their political leaders while German forces remained in French territory.

This was further limited by the ongoing German occupation of the north, which would continue until ink was on a Treaty. Prime Minister Callieaux meanwhile ran a cabinet deeply distrusted by the country, and seen as merely the men walking the country to the gallows with smiles on their faces. Callieaux, respected among the radicals, survived in power solely because nobody wanted his job - not under current conditions.

Some in the military did pine for the opportunity to overturn what was increaisngly viewed as a weak and divisive republican system and return the Monarchy, but in practice this would merely aggrevate the country further and thus figures silently pushing for a coup found themselves sidelined. This was not to say that monarchism was not supported among the military - in fact the Military was dominated by conservative former veterans of Napoleon III's wars of conquest. It merely meant that any return of the monarchy would have to be well executed and coordinated, particularly as monarchism had little to no constituency left in the country besides among the fringe right. Thus, to introduce a monarchy once more during a time of enormous political upheaval and during negotiations with Germany would be foolish.

France, it seemed, simply felt defeated in all senses. It's people had lost the will to resist, it's economy was obliterated, it's soul was lost - what more could Germany take?
 
wSZs4v6.png

Protest and Rebellion
Observing the Peace
July - September 1918

With the allies having thrown in the towel by early August and France having sought terms by the start of July, the shock of the war coming to an end came as bittersweet news throughout the warring empires.

In Germany, the news of France’s surrender was naturally met with elation and joy, with crowds of celebrating citizens being seen throughout the major German, Austrian and even Turkish cities. Yet the surrender of France did little in reality to actually end the war for your everyday German. While letters no longer came home from the western front speaking of the horrors of the conflict, the German and Austrian people were left with a strange sense of being adrift between their victory and the seemingly endless consequences that followed.

In Austria the logistics systems of the economy had largely already begun to collapse, while in both Austria and Germany the British blockade of the coast and the lack of a firm peace treaty compelling the French or any other defeated party to feed Germany meant that the country continued to starve. Demobilised troops from both empires soon found themselves wandering home into a land devoid of jobs and lacking any platform to voice their concerns, while Austria couldnt even demobilize due to the Italian advance.

While in Germany promises of political reform had already been made, offering universal or ‘staggered’ suffrage giving soldiers and other groups additional votes, Austria had made few clear commitments to reform and was a state so constitutionally chaotic that many of those with influence were far from being able to compel the Austro-Hungarian Government into reform.

In the allied states meanwhile, ironically the most adversely affected state would be Britain who had seen a gradual rise of annual striking workers rise from 10% in 1914 to 25% by 1918 - but continued to fight on. Having initially called for the war to continue in the Balkans, Italy and the Levant, British Prime Minister Lloyd George had resigned long before on May 10th and now Conservative Party leader Bonar Law had been tasked with picking up the pieces.

With the Italian and Balkan fronts out of the window, a debate in Parliament and Britain as a whole quickly ensued over what precisely to do now the war on the continent was essentially over. For the Conservatives the answer was clear; continue to prosecute the war until the Turks collapsed and the Germans agreed to a conditional and favourable peace - lest they starve. For the Labour Party meanwhile, who had long withdrawn from the coalition in April, voices demanding not just immediate end to the war, universal suffrage and elections, but also revolution, were rapidly growing.

The French Haze
Far from revolution though, Britain was peaceful compared to the likes of France and Italy. She continued to chug along, unclear of the nation’s destination but determined to see through to the finish whatever that destination would be. Parliament, aligned firmly behind Bonar Law who everyone knew needed to win something, anything, to defeat Labour in the surely upcoming elections, firmly backed whatever the Prime Minister wished, and with a firm Government majority the country had no sense of backsliding yet. Britain's former allies though met the news of the armistice with different but similar responses.

In France, a public utterly exhausted from the war reeled in shock at the defeat, but did not immediately react. Protests did rise, and marches by veterans organisations and small paramilitary bands of reservists did erupt throughout July and August in major French cities, but by and large the country waited with baited breath for the result of peace negotiations. This was in part because many Frenchmen did not believe Germany had agreed to peace, and because despite their shaken faith in the US commitment to the war, some political groupings naively just assumed the Government was just buying time to strengthen other fronts.

While the August general armistice shattered this illusion, by then the French people had largely reconciled themselves to the defeat. Now defeated in the last two major wars with Germany, the Reich felt unassailable and for many Frenchmen the Boulangerist irredentism that sprung up after the Franco-Prussian war now felt more hopeless than emotionally uplifting. Instead, many Frenchmen simply abandoned faith in their country’s might - and looked to uplift their own personal circumstances. Trade Union membership in France boomed with the highest ever recorded number of sign-ups through July and August 1918, while strikes began to grow across the country - particularly in the war-battered north.

Despite this, France too was far from revolution. A well industrialised state with a large but not dominating trade union movement and industrial centres that largely sat in the occupied north, the country was paralyzed behind a wall of German boots and unable to lash out at their political leaders while German forces remained in French territory.

This was further limited by the ongoing German occupation of the north, which would continue until ink was on a Treaty. Prime Minister Callieaux meanwhile ran a cabinet deeply distrusted by the country, and seen as merely the men walking the country to the gallows with smiles on their faces. Callieaux, respected among the radicals, survived in power solely because nobody wanted his job - not under current conditions.

Some in the military did pine for the opportunity to overturn what was increaisngly viewed as a weak and divisive republican system and return the Monarchy, but in practice this would merely aggrevate the country further and thus figures silently pushing for a coup found themselves sidelined. This was not to say that monarchism was not supported among the military - in fact the Military was dominated by conservative former veterans of Napoleon III's wars of conquest. It merely meant that any return of the monarchy would have to be well executed and coordinated, particularly as monarchism had little to no constituency left in the country besides among the fringe right. Thus, to introduce a monarchy once more during a time of enormous political upheaval and during negotiations with Germany would be foolish.

France, it seemed, simply felt defeated in all senses. It's people had lost the will to resist, it's economy was obliterated, it's soul was lost - what more could Germany take?
I am deeply sorry for France, France going to do a lot of soul-searching after this level of defeat
 
I don't see France losing too much metropolitan territory beyond some key industrial and defensive pieces close to the pre-war border; Germany will be able to take much more from Belgium. Given the realities on the ground for the colonial fronts, I suspect there will be a lot more horsetrading between Germany and the Anglo-Japanese alliance. If Portugal goes sideways in the near future, there's even more land to be divied up in the name of saving British face/sating Willy II's appetite for imperialism.
 
Colonies? Probably, or at least they'll surely try.

European territory? Question there is I suppose do they want to deal with occupying some part of France for quite a while. We'll have to see.
With Britain and America still in the war I don't see why the British need to let Germany have any colonies. Would the Germans really be willing to continue the war over colonial territories anyway? The Germans have won in Europe at this point but are as battered (probably more so) as the British. Surely all of their gains in Europe from Brest-Litovsk and France/Belgium more than make up for the loss of their colonies anyway. Does the average German citizen even care about the colonies?
 
Here's what I think a future peace treaty would look like
  1. All parties must recognize the treaty of Brest-Litovsk and the treaty of Bucharest
  2. Germany will annex Luxembourg
  3. Germany will not annex any French or Belgian territory
  4. but it [Germany] will occupy key positions along the French border until France pays all of its reparations to Germany
  5. German forces will get out of Belgium, but Belgium will be demilitarized
  6. Italy will annex some territory of Austria-Hungary, probably some parts of Tyrol
  7. All parties will recognize the territory territories that Bulgaria took during the war
  8. Bulgaria will probably take some parts of Greek Macedonia
  9. Greece will be likely compensated with Northern Epirus
  10. All German colonies in Africa will be returned
  11. Belgian Congo will be under joint German-belgian control, probably a Condominium
  12. Germany will sell all of its colonies in Asia to the British and Japanese
    green represents something I'm sure will happen, while yellow represents something I'm not too certain about.
 
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With Britain and America still in the war I don't see why the British need to let Germany have any colonies. Would the Germans really be willing to continue the war over colonial territories anyway? The Germans have won in Europe at this point but are as battered (probably more so) as the British. Surely all of their gains in Europe from Brest-Litovsk and France/Belgium more than make up for the loss of their colonies anyway. Does the average German citizen even care about the colonies?
While this is entirely speculative on my part and I look forward to where the story goes, I would say Britain would prefer colonial concessions over Germany swallowing up even more of Europe.

Germany not occupying the Channel Ports in exchange for some slices of Africa is a good trade for Britain.

Of course it all depends on what the German positions are too, and this is after 4 years of increasing radicalisation and cost on both sides.
 
With Britain and America still in the war I don't see why the British need to let Germany have any colonies. Would the Germans really be willing to continue the war over colonial territories anyway? The Germans have won in Europe at this point but are as battered (probably more so) as the British. Surely all of their gains in Europe from Brest-Litovsk and France/Belgium more than make up for the loss of their colonies anyway. Does the average German citizen even care about the colonies?
Well. Germany can always partition Belgium with France if Britain proves to be not open for negotiations regarding the colonies. Doesn't look like a good trade for Britain.
 
Does this includes german Tsigtao? Maybe Germany would want that back to maintain access to the chinese market.
Yes, I feel like the Germans would think that their colonies in Asia are undefendable to British and Japanese and also are a waste of money (something that they were not wrong about, their entire colonial project was, except maybe Togoland)
 
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Regarding Russia: It doesn't matter whether it's going to be ruled by a Tsar, General Secretary, President, etc. It'll be revanchist either which way. The best outcome for Germany is maximum balkanization. In other words they shouldn't support either of the two main factions, expect for some surplus arms to whichever side is weaker, but instead support any secessionist faction that has a decent chance to succeed.
 
2. Germany will annex Luxembourg
... IMHO wrong wording:
Luxemburg would not being 'annexed' (esp. not into Prussia and by whatever mariage scheme only too often proposed) but might become a full member-state of the German Realm as Bavaria, Saxony, Waldeck, Schaumburg-Lippe etc. were also in thereby 'finalizing' what had already begun with Luxembourgs membership in the Zollverein (customs union) of 1842.

... with all duties but also all rights as all the other members enjoy.
 
Here's what I think a future peace treaty would look like
  1. All parties must recognize the treaty of Brest-Litovsk and the treaty of Bucharest
  2. Germany will annex Luxembourg
  3. Germany will not annex any French or Belgian territory
  4. but it [Germany] will occupy key positions along the French border until France pays all of its reparations to Germany
  5. German forces will get out of Belgium, but Belgium will be demilitarized
  6. Italy will annex some territory of Austria-Hungary, probably some parts of Tyrol
  7. All parties will recognize the territory territories that Bulgaria took during the war
  8. Bulgaria will probably take some parts of Greek Macedonia
  9. Greece will be likely compensated with Northern Epirus
  10. All German colonies in Africa will be returned
  11. Belgian Congo will be under joint German-belgian control, probably a Condominium
  12. Germany will sell all of its colonies in Asia to the British and Japanese
    green represents something I'm sure will happen, while yellow represents something I'm not too certain about.
Four of these are correct
 
... IMHO wrong wording:
Luxemburg would not being 'annexed' (esp. not into Prussia and by whatever mariage scheme only too often proposed) but might become a full member-state of the German Realm as Bavaria, Saxony, Waldeck, Schaumburg-Lippe etc. were also in thereby 'finalizing' what had already begun with Luxembourgs membership in the Zollverein (customs union) of 1842.

... with all duties but also all rights as all the other members enjoy.
That's what I meant, sorry if the wording was wrong, English is my third language behind Spanish
 
Before all else Germany would probably gun for war reparations, as otherwise their economy detonates. Karl Helfferich's plan for financing the war severely overcharged their debt with the hope that Germany wins and extracts reparations from France like in 1871. OTL this led to the German economy imploding in 1918-1923 because, well, they lost.

Because Germany is still the Empire, raising/establishing taxes is not possible, so reparations are the only way they can stay afloat.
 
Before all else Germany would probably gun for war reparations, as otherwise their economy detonates. Karl Helfferich's plan for financing the war severely overcharged their debt with the hope that Germany wins and extracts reparations from France like in 1871. OTL this led to the German economy imploding in 1918-1923 because, well, they lost.

Because Germany is still the Empire, raising/establishing taxes is not possible, so reparations are the only way they can stay afloat.
But can France pay?
 
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