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Thread: Against all Odds: The British Empire in World War Two

  1. #5581
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ViperhawkZ View Post
    Yugoslavia was never stable, and I find it unlikely that it could be. Aside from having six different ethnic groups who mostly hate each other, there's also religious turmoil between Catholic, Orthodox and Muslim to deal with.

    A VERY loose federation might keep it together on paper, but they would have to be given so much autonomy that there may as well be seven different countries. And it would have to gradually increase until bits start gaining independence, whereupon there's an 80% chance the Serbian government freaks out.

    Although, that scenario does sound like it could happen.
    Add the Monarchy holding the whole thing together (might the King and the Royal Family renounce their Serbian citizenship, if any) and you have what I have in mind.
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  2. #5582
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevep View Post
    El Pip

    I am presuming, possibly wrongly, that at some point, the ship will be going fairly deeply behind enemy lines, disguised as a Japanese merchantman. Rather surprised that if I read the last post correctly their going to Australia [first?]. As such it would be very, very useful having someone who actually looks Japanese on board. I am assuming that this is the main [only] reason why Takahashi is on board.

    Actually, since he is almost certainly facing a fair degree of hostility and racism then probably getting him on a mission where the team all depend on each other to survive, would probably be beneficial. The rest of the team will learn to respect him and, while a lot about the mission may well stay secret, I have little doubt some knowledge of his activities will circulate. That will at least give the broader minded member of the forces reason to give him a fair deal and hopefully stomp down on the bigots at least a bit.

    Steve
    I thought about that, I just can't see one Japanese chap being much help on a mission. Given the quality of radio at the time there's no need for a specific Japanese accent, while any IJN boarding and/or inspection will want to see more than just one member of crew. On a smaller vessel maybe it might work, but Edgehill looks a meaty several thousand tonner so that's out.

    On the other point you are assuming he performs well and the team come to respect him, he could balls it up a treat and be a liability under fire (of course I know he wont in the AAR, but reality isn't bound by narrative compulsion ). Far more seriously I don't want my special forces team 'learning to respect' a team member during a vital mission, I want them doing the mission.

    If it had been me I would have put Takashi in command of a gunboat or MTB and have him earn respect and trust there, the added plus side is the Admiralty can actually publicise his successes that way.
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  3. #5583
    The monarchy won't help, king was Serb and that's it, renouncing serbian citizenship would be an empty gesture that would fool no one. The only way he could attract other nationalities would be through some concessions, and that would anger serbian part of country. Otherwise there would be only hate and at best indifference towards monarchy.

    Viperhawk has summed it prety well - to gain peace here you have to create confederacy so loose that it wouldn't be a single country anymore.

  4. #5584
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    El Pip Normally I'd agree, but you don't know the full extent of Edgehill's orders yet. In the end it will all make sense, though if you ever find out what gave me the idea I will expect pitchforks and torches on my door within seconds.

    Amusingly enough part of their distrust for Takahashi is the very facts you cited, though that's only a very small part. Read on and trust me to know at least to some degree what I am doing.

    Carlstadt Boy Hmm.. Probably. How's this: A Serb Kingdom acting as a sort of rump-Yugoslavia in roughly Pre-WW1 borders, with the other states along the lines of the OTL breakup with a KFOR-type mission there to keep a lid on things?
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  5. #5585
    Well it depends what people in power decide, I wasn't saying your idea is implausible, just that creating stable and unified Yugoslavia is probably impossible. Even now, with recent war, relations between Croats and Serbs are getting better and better, because we don't have any major territorial disputes anymore. Similar how Magyars were universally hated in 19th century Croatia, but now we think of them as our favorite neighbours.

    I don't know who will decide about the fate of Yugoslavia in your timeline, but God knows great powers (especially Britain) always tried to achieve stability in Balkans by supporting united Yugoslavia. So your original idea is maybe the most probable outcome.

  6. #5586
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Well I figured that the West's leading great power and most of Europe are very much focused on the area, as the rest of the continent is ridiculosuly peaceful. France and Germany buried the hatchet, the Soviets are a distant threat at best and kept in check by Bomber Command and it's Instasun, (along the lines of: Attack Europe and fight us) and the Poles and Germans are also looking for a lasting peace. In Europe the Balkans are the only serious trouble spot.

    Now, China and the Pacific on the other hand...
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  7. #5587
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    Quote Originally Posted by trekaddict View Post
    For the moment I'm leaving what happens to Yugoslavia open.
    the only way someting like yugoslavia is going to hang together will involve hobnailed boots and bayonets i fear.

  8. #5588
    Quote Originally Posted by trekaddict View Post
    El Pip Normally I'd agree, but you don't know the full extent of Edgehill's orders yet. In the end it will all make sense, though if you ever find out what gave me the idea I will expect pitchforks and torches on my door within seconds.

    Amusingly enough part of their distrust for Takahashi is the very facts you cited, though that's only a very small part. Read on and trust me to know at least to some degree what I am doing.
    trekaddict

    Intriguing. Sounds like you're using a source that is fairly universally despised. You're not taking an idea from Turtleddove are you?

    Anyway, be interested to see what you come up with.

    Steve

  9. #5589
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    Dear god, who do you think I am? The Austrian?

    No, it's not Turtledove. I read TL 191 once just to be able to say I had read it and dear god that man hates Britain...


    It's something else. As things unfold you might figure it out.
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  10. #5590
    Topaz-Fisted Demi-God Moderator Mr. Capiatlist's Avatar
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  11. #5591
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Righto. Yugoslavia is still some time away.
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  12. #5592
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    Quote Originally Posted by trekaddict View Post
    Now, China and the Pacific on the other hand...
    China should be very interesting. At least in TTL I'm assuming the Republic of China will be more then just taiwan?

    Although considering the Yanks in the area I think I foresee a Koreaesque China, Communist North Democratic South.

  13. #5593
    Captain ViperhawkZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Larkin View Post
    China should be very interesting. At least in TTL I'm assuming the Republic of China will be more then just taiwan?

    Although considering the Yanks in the area I think I foresee a Koreaesque China, Communist North Democratic South.
    The Russians are also at war with China, and I think it's possible that the Allies will have to let them take part of China (Xinjiang or Manchuria?) just to end the nightmare slog through the Soviet Union that would result from the defeat of Japan and Germany - but that's a ways off yet.

    So in that scenario we end up with 4 or 5 nations in china, plus likely independent Tibet.
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  14. #5594
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Viper nailed it pretty much. The actual borders are still in flux, but it will be interesting to say the least.
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  15. #5595
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Capiatlist View Post
    Keep it on topic, people.
    Just to reiterate ... keep on topic, re the contents of Turtledove's books etc
    Last edited by loki100; 24-08-2011 at 19:28.

  16. #5596
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    Here we go! 1943, the year that OTL saw the beginning of the end for the Axis.

    Chapter 309



    “TWO MONTHS!” Hunt yelled. “Two months!” he repeated slightly more restrained, and he was happy that no one was here to see his moon-sized head and the remnants of yesterday's New Years celebrations.

    The last of the thirteen Cuba Libre's[1] he'd had over the last eighteen hours must have been bad or something.

    Either way, he had barely survived the phone call that had called him to this house on the outskirts of Liverpool.


    He collected himself ,stepped around the corner and saw immediately why he had been called. The damage to the outside of the house was limited to blown-out windows and door, and this very thing told him that it was most likely only a small charge, hence a hand grenade.


    A constable wearing Sergeant's stripes asked for his identification when he walked up to the house and after being shown told Hunt what they knew.

    “It's little enough, Sir. It used to be a boarding house until the war broke out and most of the tenants were called up or left for other reasons.”


    “So why am I here?”


    The Sergeant saw the signs and having heard about this case decided to let it slide.

    “Well, for one I saw enough Hand Grenades going off at Ypres, secondly the the owner was a bloody paddie.”

    Enough circumstantial evidence, Hunt figured. Time to look at Special Branche's list of Persons of interest.


    “He was killed then?” Hunt asked aloud.


    “He was, Sir. Not nice the sight was, I can tell you.”

    “I need to make a call. Where is the next telephone?”

    “Right in there, Sir. He had it hooked up just before the war.”

    In London a phone in an office that was as far from the Yard as was possible rang half an hour later.


    Percival Godliman picked up and before he could say anything the call he had been waiting for for some time now came.


    “Hunt here. It seems our friends have struck again.”

    “Are you sure?”


    “Definitely. A grenade was used to off an Irishman who was on the IRA watchlist. We could never nick him for anything, but it seems that someone else knew more than us.”

    “Hold on, wasn't the chap we had in mind for stealing the grenades in the first place IRA?”

    “He was. House cleaning?”

    “Hard to say. Either way, we will come back up..”

    “I wouldn't bother yet, Godliman.” Hunt interrupted, “As far as we know he could have flogged the grenades to someone else who threw them around at random.”

    “True enough. Still, I will tell Bloggs to stand by. You will definitely hear from us again.”


    ~**---**~




    Across the city Liam Devlin was as frustrated as Hunt was but lacked the hangover.

    He also knew for certain that the latest stiff had been part of the IRA at one point, the boarding house had been a conduit for newly arrived men and various supplies and arms. The close proximity to a train station only helped in this task.

    Though why someone would attack the infrastructure of the IRA in Britain was a mystery. The English would rather arrest the man to find out what he knew and the IRA itself was mad to destroy a network that might never be rebuilt.

    That only left the Reds, the Nazis and the Reformed IRA, though it was unlikely the Reds or the Nazis would attack someone whose death would have no discernible impact on Anglo-Irish relations.

    But what would the Reformed IRA gain from destroying the IRA network?


    Maybe the RIRA blokes had attacked Harrison for talking to him, though that was unlikely.

    At least he now knew where to go next. If anyone knew what was going on in the community it was this man. To talk to him he would need to travel across the city and if his suspicions were correct...

    He looked up and saw that in his thoughts he had neatly walked past his destination and had to double back. Two minutes later he knocked at the door and was puzzled when he didn't hear an answer. True, he had last seen this man ten years ago when they had battled the Loyalists in the Six Counties but Thomas Riley could not have changed this much.

    When he tried the door and found that it was unlocked he was even more puzzled and felt into his pocket for the small snub-nosed Webley Pocket pistol he carried.


    He slowly opened the door, never seeing the police constable who was stepping out of the grocery store, only to step inside and beg the use of the store telephone as he saw Devlin fiddling with the door.


    Devlin meanwhile methodically searched the two-storey house and saw immediately that the place had been tossed by someone who knew what he was doing, though what they were looking for Devlin couldn't know. Riley had mostly served as contact who sent new arrivals elsewhere, using the courier service he owned as a cover.

    Riley never kept any of his confidential papers at his private residence as doing so had nearly cost his head when the Brits had searched his place when he had still operated in Ireland.

    That he opened the door to the bathroom from the right of the doorframe instead of the left saved his life as the grenade was wired to the door being opened and not the handle.

    The blast threw him backwards, caused nosebleed and not a few scrapes and bruises along with ringing ears. He fainted on impact with the opposing wall.


    Hunt on the other hand felt perfectly fine by the time thanks to a cup of scorching hot black wartime Coffee bought at an American Restaurant and was on the scene within ten minutes of the explosion, having by pure chance been on the way to speak to Riley too.

    Liverpool had been a point of entry for IRA terrorists since they had founded themselves and so the files Special Branch had available were very extensive, and the last victim, just like this one, had been a suspected if not known IRA member.


    It were actually the sirens of the fire brigade and the police vehicles that woke Devlin from his slumber.

    Luckily for him he had not been severly wounded, but he knew that this might change of the local plod caught sight of him in here. He staggered to his feet and brushed dust and masonry from his clothes. His face had to be covered with blood from the wood splinters that the door had produced, but it seemed as if the grenade had been on the opposite site of the room else he would have been killed by the splinters of the door that seemed to have suffered less damage than would have been expected.

    It seemed that booby trap had been done on the cheap, with one grenade to cover both entry points.


    “OY, YOU THERE! STOP!”

    The man who had yelled at Devlin was about his own age and general build and judging by the coat he was wearing that neatly concealed a gun a copper of some sort, and thus by definition not someone Devlin wanted to speak to right now. He dashed through the halway and was out the back door before Hunt could pursue him and over the fence by the time the Brit was at the door.

    “Bloody hell, he knows my face!” Devlin mumbled as he made his way away from the scene of the explosion.



    +-+-+-+-+-

    Comments, questions, rotten tomatoes?


    [1] It can be done ITTL. Coca Cola is operating from London and across the Empire, and the drink was apparently invented during the Spanish-American war. It was also the cause of the biggest headache I ever had, but damn that party was so worth it.
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  17. #5597
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    Devlin has more lives than a cat...

    And I agree with you about the darned Cubalibre hellish thing.
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    Well then nice to see my suspicions might be right.

    Split the bastards up even earlier the OTL and on worse terms and they might be too busy killing each other to murder civilians.

    Now if we could only have the same happen to the Loyalists the North might actually get some peace.

  19. #5599
    British Unionist trekaddict's Avatar
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    Kurt_Steiner He does, even though that sequence with his face was inspired by the bit in Eye of the Needle where Faber runs away from the train after killing the soldier, where he utters the almost same words.

    Agent Larkin Not to start a flamewar, but I believe that whatever happens to NI should be up to those living there and not partisan power politics in London and Dublin.

    That said, if any referendum where to go either way I could see their point.

    As for the IRA: Terrorism = bad, no matter the cause. As for the RIRA, they will become known to the wider public eventually, though the response of the authorities will be different from what we know.
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  20. #5600
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    Quote Originally Posted by trekaddict View Post

    Agent Larkin Not to start a flamewar, but I believe that whatever happens to NI should be up to those living there and not partisan power politics in London and Dublin.

    That said, if any referendum where to go either way I could see their point.

    As for the IRA: Terrorism = bad, no matter the cause. As for the RIRA, they will become known to the wider public eventually, though the response of the authorities will be different from what we know.
    On the Off-topic part I agree with you completely though as a resident of the Republic the last thing I want is the North back.

    However I have to admit the response of the authorities could be very interesting. Especially as I don't think Dev has passed any of the Offences against the State Acts yet. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Offence..._the_state_act Link to the wikipedia page for it. It's not much but its something to consider mentioning if you talk about terrorism in Ireland.

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