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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

WW1 - Pt2


PhilB
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The recent string "Suppose we`d lost" showed that the number of permutations and possibilities gets a bit out of hand. So let`s simplify it to the first phase. Suppose the Germans had broken through completely, the French had capitulated and our armies were pushed back to the Channel ports. Questions:-

1/ Could we have effected a number of Dunkirks and how many men would we have been likely to evacuate?

2/ Would we have fought on in other theatres?

Phil B

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I suppose the same would happen like in 1870...

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The issue would then become whether possession of France gave Germany enough resources to survive a blockade. The role of the British and Russian armies would then be to so engage the enemy as to prevent him diverting military resources back to the civilian population; a cruel, but eventually (surely) successful way of running a war.

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OK - being serious. If Britain has control of a number of ports the superiority of the Royal Navy would have evaced the BEF to a satisfactory degree. If the French surrender, does Britain fight on? In reality ... no.

A deal is struck. France is weakened further a la 1870.

Britain goes back to Empire. US just does its own thang ...

Now we get nurofen going ... France is infuriated by the 1914 armistice. Germany is so busy being superior and Empire building that it loses its grip a little. The French get bolder, they sneak a deal with Russia - which not having had a revolution, is still gagging for a go at Germany. Nasty little scenario develops.

The French become Fascist teaming up with Monarchistic Russia ... and hey ho it' off we go to war again. You just can't have the 20th century without two world wars.

So there!

Des

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Desmond:- Why would Britain have done a deal in 1918 when in 1940 it doesn`t appear to have been an option in very similar circumstances? Phil B

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Desmond:- Why would Britain have done a deal in 1918 when in 1940 it doesn`t appear to have been an option in very similar circumstances?      Phil B

i think a deal as you say was definately in the offing if Churchill had not been such a dominate leader. There were some who were calling for a peace treaty in 1940.

Arm.

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SORRY - I didn't realise you were dating this all to 1918! I looked at your first post and assumed we were talking 1914 scenario.

If we are talking 1918 then an evac is still a relative success, Lloyd George still has kept large drafts of men back in England and the Yanks are in the war with millions of 'em available. In that case, the war goes on and on but the Allies still win.

Now come up with the strategy/tactics which get them back onto the continent.

Edited by Desmond7
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My fault, Desmond. I didn`t specify the time, but assumed it to be late on but before the USA had come in. Do we:-

1/ Pursue a "Knocking away the props" policy outside Europe or

2/ Plan to invade, bearing in mind the recent debacles at Gallipoli and Tanga or

3/ Blockade and hope for the best or

4/ Make a settlement? Phil B

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Phil - The kettle's on ... I'm off to ponder. But in the immortal words .. 'I shall return'

Whether I come up with a remotely sensible answer is a totally different thing! :D

Des

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If 1918, what about Italy? With France out of the frame she would be in a perilous situation.

If she did not sue for peace, the British and Americans could seek to plant more of their manpower in Italy via the Med. and break into A-H and, eventually, break into Balkans and thus Constantinople and Russia.

However, the dispositions of the now neutral French Fleet would have to taken into account since they had a larger battleship force in the Mediterranean than the RN (although a joint UK-US fleet, respectively the 1st and 2nd largest navies in the World, would dominate).

Perhaps, if possible, a repeat (?) performance of what happened at Oran in 1940 would be needed.

Richard

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Phil - Post cuppa thoughts.

Honour and heart would tell Brits to fight on.

Reality and head should tell them that it's time for the regimental bands to play 'the world turned upside down again'

French defeat and British evac = German victory. Thought of lots of other scenarios such as 'other theatre' operations etc. But no sir ... defeat in F&F prior to American involvement is party over time.

Des

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