If Germany Had Won World War I - Page 6 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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The First World War (1914-1918).
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By Thunderhawk
#1732759
What would the Germans have gotten from the British?
By guzzipat
#1733394
There was a faint possibilty of Germany winning the war in 1914, but I would put it very low.

In 1918? No chance at all. The Luddendorf attack, although succesful at first, was a narrow thrust. It was bound to fail because the logistics of the time couldn't support such an action for an extened period. There are many historians who claim a limit for such thrust in modern warfare of around 200 miles before severe logistical problems cause a halt. In 1918 with horse drawn supply and reinforcement at walking pace, that distance would be far shorter. In continueing to attack after the failure of the first main thrust Ludenndorf himself destroyed the moral of the German Army, already fragile with reports of hunger riots at home.

The attack in any case wasn't designed to "win the war" as a statement by Lieutenant-Colonel Wetzel, Chief of the operation section of the General staff makes clear "....Only a far reaching military success which would make it appear to the Entente powers that, even with the help of America, the continuation of the war offered no further prospects of sucess, would provide the possibilty,...., of rendering our embittered opponents really ready to make peace. This is the political aim of the Supreme Command in 1918"

The aim was a stalmate that would force peace negotiations, not victory. It isn't to much a stretch to assume that the aim was adopted because they saw victory as impossible.

Source The Swordbearers Correlli Barnett published 1963.

The attack was never vectored on Paris, it was designed to split the British and French forces. The line was well North of Paris, Michael the main attack was aimed at Amiens, heading for the coast, the secondary attack Mars was aimed at Arras. So speculation about what would have happened if Paris was captured is pointless.

Even all that ignores the factor that more than any other beat Germany, the naval blockade.
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By pikachu
#1733563
At one point I had the exact map of German territorial claims in WW1 (in German), I think I've lost it though. The closest thing I have is this map of maximum German claims in Africa (in 1917).
Image

I'd post a higher resolution version but the forum rules regarding pictures have apparently changed and prohibit higher than 640x640 images.
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By Godstud
#1733618
Results of Germany winning WW1?
Well, no Treaty of Versailles, for one. This is one of the big things that led to the Nazi movement being able to get such great support. Maybe Hitler wouldn't have been able to come into power(No Hitler, no WW2?). No crumbling German economy after WW1 would have occurred and that was one of the driving forces of Nationalism. It could even have led to a more stable Europe, much earlier.

Japan might not have decided to attack Pearl Harbour in 1941, since it could very well be under the impression that the US wouldn't get involved in a Pacific war.

America might have a really different foreign policy today had it never been involved in a WW2. The isolationism it practiced could have continued.

Would atomic bombs have even been constructed in the 40s? Atomic power could have waited until the 60s or 70s and the Cold War might not have even occurred. The Space Race might not have even happened and I can bet that we wouldn't be as technologically advanced.

It's interesting to speculate, but in the end it's only speculation and What If.
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By Thunderhawk
#1734338
No crumbling German economy after WW1 would have occurred

The depression was not far off. I suspect the German economy would still have taken a hit. The French economy however would face the depression and payments to Germany.

Japan might not have decided to attack Pearl Harbour in 1941, since it could very well be under the impression that the US wouldn't get involved in a Pacific war.

Euro Politics aside, an apparantly passive USA would have been an even better target.
By anubis12
#1812326
you lot get off topic quick.
Germany could have only won world war 1 at the start of the engagement, so to say they would have won in 1918 or after they had knocked Tsarist Russia out of the war is complete fantasy (irony as this whole topic is fantasy but meh). At the start of the war the powers where still under the idea that war was a nobles game so i have drawn up this hypothesis on that bases.
It is 1914 and instead of the history we know the German army starts the schleffin plan Luxenbourg falls and instead of holding the German war machine the Belgium army is crushed. The German army marches on to France and instead of the stoic resistance from the B.E.F and the French Third, Fourth and Fifth armies they are routed and the German offensive pushes deeper into France and by February 1915 have controll of Paris.
The German High Command after such a decisive victory in the early stage of the war march on Marseille (my theoir as the French new capital as it is the next largest population centre and is quite far from the front line). The German army pushes on they beat of stiff french resistance and resulting in the complete destruction of the Fifth and Sixth French armies and the B.E.F. Seeing as there is no hope, as the german army are pushing onto Marseille and the Third and Fourth armies are severely weakend the French Government sues for peace with Germany. By June 1915 France is out of World War One they have been forced to give up all their over seas coloines and have lost control of the mines bordering Germany (cant rember what they where called sorry) and they have to pay reperations to the German Reich.
With the loss of France the British continue the blockade of Germany and quikcly ship out troops to the eastern front to support Russia but due to logistics of moving a large ammount to men an ordinance form Britian to Russia the aid is not as usefull on the eastern front. By the end of the 1915 the German army had pushed through poland and was onto Russia. The Russian forces suffering from terrible logistical problems where beaten back and the German line dug in 50 miles into Russian territory. Christmas sets in and an unstable peace develops down the eastern front during this time the German army resupplies. 1916 the fighting starts kicks off again an Russian numbers are useless against the Tactical might of the German army after three decisive wins the German armie has pushed the Russians 100 miles back, the Russian generals feet up of incompotent leader ship and the catastrophic lose of life sue for peace effectivly usruping Alexanders throne. By the end of 1916 Russia is out of the war and have had to give up land, money (the things they lost in the Brest-Litovsk treaty), effectivly leaving Britian as the only power fighting against Germany and the central powers.
The might of the British Royal Navy and the might of the German High Fleet leaves an uneasy stand off and a war neither countrys can win out right after a couple of meaningless naval battles Britian sues for peace, lossing control of their african coloines.
It is June 1917 The War to end all Wars is over.
I think that after world war one there would be a massive power vaccume as the Empires of France and Russia have effectivly been destroyed i also don’t believe the Austria-Hungary Empire could have survived long after world war one. Germany would absorb Belguim and Austria into its self install a puppet goverment on polands throne and ukraines throne.
To be honest with the line i have set out under what i believe i do not think Lenin would have been rushed from Germany to Russia infact i think the Germans would have had him exicuted, i also think if the Generals had over thrown the goeverment instead of some of them siding with the reds this would have effectivly killed off the state we knew as the USSR before it was born. In the wake of world war one we have a stronger Germany finally able to controll central europe as they have wanted to do in the years before a crippled France, Blooded British Empire, floundering Ottoman Empire (i cant see a win in world war 1 changing the out come for them) and a military state or new monachy in Russia. With the onset of the Great depression and the stoke market crash i think Britian would have been able to ride it out with a mer taxe increase maybe causing a rise in socialist changes is Britian i also think the same thing of Germany, with there new wealth and imperial lands and puppet monarches i think they to would be able to weather the storm, but for France it is hard to say they paid for most of there war via loans and after losing to Germany and haveing to pay repirations to them i think this would have caused hyper inflation in France making it the prefect breeding ground for a Nazi’ish party to come into power. If it would have led to another world war it is hard to say as france neither has the economic power or the population of Germany it would be hard to see them rise up like the Germans to start another round of fighting off.
What do you lot think to my idea
By Smilin' Dave
#1812476
It is 1914 and instead of the history we know the German army starts the schleffin plan Luxenbourg falls and instead of holding the German war machine the Belgium army is crushed. The German army marches on to France and instead of the stoic resistance from the B.E.F and the French Third, Fourth and Fifth armies they are routed and the German offensive pushes deeper into France and by February 1915 have controll of Paris.

This presupposes that the Schlieffen plan and its subsequent alterations was likely to work in the first place. The plan didn't have a realistic view of logistics or the amount of ground to be covered. Both of these things were crucial in breaking the German army in 1914 during the actual war, and would only be exacerbated by a war started on a broader front by including Luxembourg.

You may find this thread interesting:
http://thehistoryforum.com/forum/viewto ... 61&t=28599
By anubis12
#1813181
correct me if im wrong but is this not a fictional topic, so i can say the plan would work, which it could have if implimented right and the generals had not paniced and pulled troops from the right.
,
By Smilin' Dave
#1814320
It is a fictional topic, but it draws heavily from fact. The Schlieffen plan was overly optimistic with regards to the distance to be covered and logistics, and could never have gone as expected. The gap that the allies exploited in the first battle of the Marne was created in part because the Germans were attempting to encircle French army formations, they couldn't actually move fast enough (operating at the end of their logistic lines, while the French simply got closer to their supply centres) to catch them and became disarrayed.
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By Thunderhawk
#1814406
@ anubis12

The kind of mobile army your scenario would require did not exist in WW1, save maybe the Americans at the end.

If Germany managed to knock out France early, with a magically high mobile army or through conventional methods, why would the British land troops in Russia? The British would have had horrible logistics problems within Russia. In a Axis victory on the West Poland the Ukraine would not have been given independance nor would the Austria-Hungary empire have splintered allowing Austria to be absorbed into Germany. Nor would a tax increase off set a deprecetion.
By anubis12
#1816441
thank you for the critisism it was help full, i wrote in the logictcal nightmare the British would have had landing forces in Russia and increase in tax on people would keep a government more stable helping them spent money where it is needed to keep an economy running
By Mundame
#1835811
Suppose von Bulow had support at the Marne --- he was over 70 years old and he could not get the other generals supposedly coordinating to support his troops at First Marne. So he pulled back.......................and all the rest followed.

But the Germans EXPECTED to win, and quickly, as they had in 1871 at Sedan. And did after, in 1940.

If the Germans had won quickly, I see a big transfer of colonies from France (and Belgium) to Germany: it explicitly wanted its "Place in the sun," as the Kaiser said.

No Hitler. No Nazism. No excessive hatred of Jews --- because no riots and leftist threat of revolution at home. Remember that Germany had the most liberal laws favoring Jews in all of Europe before WWI!! And there were only 0.5% Jews in Germany even in the '30s. The war did drive them crazy: Hitler believed fervently that Germany was never defeated, but "stabbed in the back by Jews and Communists," as he famously said. Over and over till everyone believed it.

No atom bomb! We probably still would not have nuclear power, to this day. As we are likely to see nukes normalized as weapons soon, since we've lost nuclear nonproliferation, that could be important.

On the other hand, Germany certainly intended to take over Russia for fear they would become powerful enough to make and win war with Germany. Would Germany under the Kaiser have gone for world domination through war? That is, certainly it would have gone after Russia, but also full control of France and then with French manpower, attempting the conquest of Britain, and then eventually America?

I'm thinking not America, at any rate. A bridge too far, or rather, no bridge. The Kaiser was certainly nuts, but not as nuts as Hitler, who did declare war on us.

No immigrants in Europe, I'm guessing. Lots and lots of differences, and much more order in the world. If the Germans could have held onto Africa, rather than all powers withdrawing after WWII, things would be a lot better there than the social devastation that exists now.
By Coisdealbhach
#1836679
unless it were an overwhelming victory (which was never possible due to Germany's lack of materiel) Germany would've still found itself without the colonies it needed to become a major power. therefore, it's likely that the German state still would've turned on its neighbours to devour them as colonies and would still have sought to conquer and viciously exploit them (as the Nazi state was to do with Jews and E Europe).

I still think the strong anti-communist and authoritarian/anti-democratic tendencies within the political culture there would've come to the surface, even if there had been no Weimer Republic to collapse during the great depression. I don't think it was the cultural makeup of the Germans as most Americans tend to believe, but the internal struggles Germany faced with the threat of communist revolution and few options available in building an empire like the other European powers already possessed.
By Mundame
#1837352
unless it were an overwhelming victory (which was never possible due to Germany's lack of materiel) Germany would've still found itself without the colonies it needed to become a major power.

I can't see that: all turned on First Marne. It was a very, very near thing! Germany certainly won quickly the war before and the war after, and it almost won just that quickly in September 1914. Then Germany would still have been tremendously powerful, unaffected by the long attrition and blockade that did happen. They would certainly have taken the French colonies and the Belgian colonies, and thus have had lots of space in the sun.

The Weimar Republic did not collapse during the Great Depression; it collapsed after 1923, the hyperinflation. The Great Depression occurred during the '30s. During the late '20s, Germany was quite prosperous. It had paid off the reparations (via the hyperinflation, of course), and ignored Hitler; it didn't need him.

Then the U.S. collapsed our stock market and produced a great depression that affected Germany as badly as we were affected. We seem to keep doing that..............the current financial collapse is our fault, too. I hope it doesn't have as serious consequences as it did in the '30s! The Depression raised Hitler to power, and there we all were.

If Germany had won WWI, no communists, no leftist rebellions. Remember that they suppressed leftists very successfully indeed for a long time --- Lenin was so isolated that they shipped him back to Russia to cause what trouble he could (he caused a lot) in a closed railway train! Socialism and labor movements were less developed in Germany than anywhere else in the developed world. Had Germany won WWI, that's how it would have remained.

Germany meant to take the mines areas of France and also to rule Belgium all the way to the seacoast and have large German bases opposite Britain, which was why Britain entered the war, of course, to avoid a German regional hegemony.

The only really interesting question to me is, where would Germany have gone with its hegemony? Rule of France and takeover of its manpower for soldiering in Russia? That Germany feared Russia and meant to conquer it was well known at the time. How far would Germany have extended its rule? It could have become a German-ruled continent, which might have had some advantages in social order, but Germany's undeniable obsession with militarism was ominous.
By Coisdealbhach
#1837890
The only really interesting question to me is, where would Germany have gone with its hegemony? Rule of France and takeover of its manpower for soldiering in Russia? That Germany feared Russia and meant to conquer it was well known at the time. How far would Germany have extended its rule? It could have become a German-ruled continent, which might have had some advantages in social order, but Germany's undeniable obsession with militarism was ominous.


Russia would've been a last resort; they would not have had the logistics to conquer Russia at that time. Even the German military of WWII with its blitzkreig couldn't achieve it.

They would have stuck with France, for sure.

I hope it doesn't have as serious consequences as it did in the '30s! The Depression raised Hitler to power, and there we all were.


amen.

If Germany had won WWI, no communists, no leftist rebellions. Remember that they suppressed leftists very successfully indeed for a long time --- Lenin was so isolated that they shipped him back to Russia to cause what trouble he could (he caused a lot) in a closed railway train! Socialism and labor movements were less developed in Germany than anywhere else in the developed world. Had Germany won WWI, that's how it would have remained.


I don't agree. Germany had probably the largest and most organised workers movement in the world; certainly in Europe. It was what everyone from James Connolly to Lenin looked to for inspiration and ideas. Their workers parties served as a model for other workers parties around the world.
By Mundame
#1838449
Germany had probably the largest and most organised workers movement in the world; certainly in Europe. It was what everyone from James Connolly to Lenin looked to for inspiration and ideas. Their workers parties served as a model for other workers parties around the world.


Ah, but note: Lenin was not in Germany, nor was he allowed to get into Germany; he was isolated as though he were a contagious disease. He was in exile in Switzerland.

My reading says that German leftist parties were so tame that they were under complete government control. It wasn't till the dire events of the war and afterward that they got out of hand and scared the Germans so badly. So it seems likely to me that a WWI (quick) victory by Germany would have allowed this suppression of leftism to promulgate across Europe.

Except in Russia, of course, where there was an entirely different dynamic working. Which might have been a reason for a victorious Germany to march against Russia. I don't know why you say Germany knew they couldn't conquer Russia! Nobody ever seems to think that --- Napoleon, Hitler, the King of Sweden, Turks even in WWI. They are always, always wrong, but they always give it a try, and in my reading, a whole lot of the war preparation of Germany was in expectation of making war on Russia before they got too strong to be ABLE to conquer! Russia expected it, too ------ that's why the different-gauge railroad tracks, so the Germans had to use Russian prisoners to root up those tracks and replace them with the right gauge.

Yeah, I think if Germany had won, they'd have established ports on the Channel (well, we know that, it was an explicit war aim) and then marched East within a couple years. The problems the Czar was having, Rasputin and all the rest of it, were quite independent of WWI, after all.
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By Thoss
#1891643
Germany did, in a way, win in a part of the First World War. With the Treaty Of Brest-Litovsk we see exactly how punitive a German peace would have been. If the Versailles treaty deserves damnation for being both too punitive in terms of the territorial and financial demands made on Germany, but at the same time too soft in its collective security enforcement mechanisms, the German peace that would have been imposed on the allies would have been entirely punitive, with massive territorial and financial penalties laden on western Europe. Germany's vague Weltpolitik war aims and victory hungry population would have demanded no less.

Nevertheless, had the Entente won without America (unlikely as that may be) they would probably imposed a more demanding peace treaty any way.
By Smilin' Dave
#1891759
Couldn't the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk be seen in context of the ongoing conflict? In a way the reason that treaty was so harsh was because Germany wanted to secure the "rear" and improve material supplies. So perhaps given a different context the result would have been more balanced?

I like your point on collective security though.
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By Thunderhawk
#1891806
In a way the reason that treaty was so harsh was because Germany wanted to secure the "rear" and improve material supplies. So perhaps given a different context the result would have been more balanced?

Are you saying that if Germany had won on the Western front afterwords, their demands would have been minimal as that would have been the end of war?
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