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Thread: Onze Plaats in de Zon: The Rise of Frederik de Grote (van Holland)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tanzhang (譚張) View Post
    Seek75: Yet your stance on whether or not you'd read my AAR is suspiciously absent...
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    Being Dutch I have a weak spot for all Dutch-AAR's, however the quality of your story so far makes it a great AAR regardless of it being about Holland. Keep up the good work!

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  3. #283
    Argentina Delenda Est Tanzhang (譚張)'s Avatar
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    Seek75: A comment on the AAR itself would be nice though

    FlorisDeVijfde: Thank you very much, and welcome!

    Okay, here comes the next update! I spent a lot of time and effort into it so I hope it meets your expectations. In the 1874-1877 period The Netherlands made great headway in colonisation but this and the "Home Front" will be covered in the next Election Interlude rather than this chapter. I have a vested interest in having another election before 1877, I think after reading this chapter many of you will guess why.

    I would also like to bring to your attention dear readers, that the AARland Choice AARwards Q4 are now in session. I hope that all of you reading this will register your vote for your favourite AARs (last quarter's turnout was disappointing, apparently) and that if you should choose to vote for this AAR please do so in the Historybook category.

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  4. #284
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    The Second Spanish-Netherlands War: 1872-1874

    A Tale of Two Princes
    The war against the anarchists remains one of the proudest and most glorious moments in Dutch history, comparable to the victory against Spain in 1581 or King Frederik's victory over the southern separatists. The war is especially notable for being the first major intervention in a mainland European event by The Netherlands and also the proving ground for two of it's most ablest royal princes, Frederik, Prince of Orange and his younger brother Willem, both sons of the reigning King Frederik.

    Prince Frederik was born in The Hague on the 22nd of August 1836, nearly a month before his uncle Prince Willem's assassination. The death of his uncle and his young son elevated the young prince from fourth to second in line to the Dutch throne at the age of only a month. This heightened his importance but also made his carers and especially his mother overprotective of him, lest he or his father end up like his late uncle. Although King Frederik disagreed with raising a son this way, lest he grow "too weak and sissy" he was often away on campaign, drilling the military in preparation for another campaign or busy running the country so Queen Louise was left to raise young Prince Frederik the way she liked.

    The young prince was said to have hated many of his carers, and his mother's overbearing and overprotective attitude towards him made him quite antagonistic towards her. Later scholars have pointed out than many palace aides at the time were themselves from, or had family connections in the southern provinces and this may have led to Prince Frederik's disdain for the Belgians in later life.

    Despite the fact he rarely got to see his father, the young prince was filled with admiration for him, and paid special attention to his exploits against King Leopold and the Belgians during his history studies. What little time he did spend with his father was usually also spent with the army and it's generals and he soon grew fond of them too, especially the Napoleonic Wars veteran General Chasse who acted as a mentor to him. His father and the older generals would often speak affectionately of the late King Willem, which inspired a reverence by the young prince to the grandfather he had never met.

    General Chasse's death in 1849 spurred the 12-year old prince to let go of all polite formality towards his carers and his mother, and he soon grew angry, disobedient and even violent towards them, he paid little attention to civil studies and mathematics and spent as much time as he could with the army. His mother was less than impressed but his father praised his young son, and suggested Prince Frederik spend some time with relatives in Prussia as he had done, to fuel his desire for generalship. By this time Prince Willem was six years old so the need for an immediate heir in case of King Frederik's death was no longer an issue, so Queen Louise agreed, albeit reluctantly, to let Frederik study in Berlin while she concentrated on raising Willem.

    During his years in Berlin Prince Frederik excelled under the tutelage of Prussian General Helmuth von Moltke, who like his father was a disciple of the late Carl von Clausewitz. His ten years study in Prussia was augmented by practical military experience, serving with the Prussian army during the Second, Third and Fourth Austro-Prussian Border Wars. On returning to The Netherlands in 1860 Prince Frederik served as Undersecretary of the Army under his father, spearheading tactics using the new Chasse rifles which would be used in the war against Bali. He married Princess Amalia von Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach in a ceremony in The Hague in 1860.


    Like his father King Frederik, The Prince of Orange relished the chance to go to war with Spain. He served as a General and second in command of the Dutch Forces, answering only to his father and to King Carlos VII, commander of the Royal Spanish Army in exile.

    King Frederik's younger son Prince Willem was born in The Hague on the 4th of September 1842. Unlike his older brother, Willem's carers weren't so overprotective of him and he generally had a happy childhood with them and Queen Louise. When his brother Frederik left for Berlin Queen Louise spent extra time lavishing attention on the young Willem, spurring an interest in painting, reading and philosophy.

    The young prince was quite eloquent for his age, and spent his days conversing with scholars and politicians of the day. He originally wanted an education at Leiden University, his father's alma matter, but having heard of the liberal education available in Great Britain asked his father if he could receive an education there.

    King Frederik was disappointed that his young son preferred the liberal arts to the art of war but nevertheless saw the benefit in having his son educated in Britain. By the time Prince Willem was 18, the British navy were already upgrading it's old wooden fleet with ironclads powered by coal and steam, and not wanting the Dutch navy to lag behind, King Frederik sent his son to study naval tactics at the Royal Navy base in Plymouth Devonport, hoping that a disciplined naval education would "knock all that liberalism out of him".

    This proved to be an error on King Frederik's part, as Prince Willem was placed under the tutelage of Rear-Admiral Michael Seymour, hero of the Crimean and Chinese Wars and a member of the British Liberal Party. Under Seymour, Willem learned both Naval tactics and Liberal politics and excelled at both. After five years in Plymouth and on the advice of his mentor, Willem went to further his study at Oxford University unbeknownst to his father but with tacit support from his mother, where he became further involved with Liberal politics and served as a secretary to the local Liberal MP, William Gladstone.

    During his long stay in Great Britain, Prince Willem led the life of an enlightened liberal gentleman, and made many friends in both liberal academic and naval circles. He was popular among the royal family too, and was seen as a natural choice for a son-in-law by Queen Victoria. He married Princess Alice in a ceremony in London in 1865, attended by Prime Minister Gladstone and the aging former Prime Minister Palmerston, as well as Duke Seymour, First Lord of the Admiralty, Johan Rudolf Thorbecke and in a rare public appearance, the Dutch naval hero and explorer David Tasman. Upon his return to The Netherlands he was put in charge of modernising the somewhat archaic Royal Dutch Navy: he instituted the transition from wooden ships powered by sail to ironclads powered by steam, founded a new naval base and academy in Ghent and spearheaded the introduction of a Dutch Marine Corps, based on British lines.


    Named Willem in honour of his late uncle, Prince Willem was like his namesake in many ways. A gentleman and a liberal, British Prime Minister Gladstone called him "the second great Liberal hope for The Netherlands" the first of course being Thorbecke. During the war with Spain Prince Willem served with the Navy and led the escort during the Bilbao landing.

    The Bilbao Landings
    As in the First Carlist War, the support of the northern Basque peoples were integral to the success of any future Carlist government. King Carlos was adamant that a quick liberation of the Basques in Bilbao would swell the ranks of the Carlist Resistance and petitioned the Dutch Command to strike there first.


    Prince Frederik's plans for the Bilbao Landings. The Dutch Army would be divided into two waves due to transport concerns, The majority of the Dutch Army would make up the first wave while 18'000 infantry will make up the second wave. The first wave would lay siege to Bilbao and prepare for a counter-attack by the Spanish Army, when the Spanish army are defeated the first wave will pursue the routed Spaniards while the second wave would continue besieging Bilbao before joining up with the rest of the first wave.

    Prince Willem however, was more concerned with a threat much closer to home, the French. Emperor Napoleon III had already showed his taste for military intervention having invaded Bolivia three years earlier, he had also received an audience from the Pope begging him to intervene on behalf of Spain's Catholics. Indeed, a fragmented Spain would be a prime target for an expansionist France and unlike the Dutch, the French were after conquest, not liberation.

    Prince Willem believed that France would likely strike at the heart of the Radical movement, Catalonia. He proposed launching a daring three-pronged amphibious assault there first, while using the second wave to siege Bilbao. By occupying the Spanish-French border as quickly as possible Prince Willem hoped to keep Napoleon III out of the war while striking at the heart of the Radical movement he hoped would leave Spain's anarchists in disarray.


    By striking at four places at once, Prince Willem hoped to knock the Radicals out of the war before France could. This plan did however leave the Dutch army fragmented and easier to defeat and thus it was rejected by Kings Frederik and Carlos, the latter not willing to risk any show of weakness in front of the Basques.

    The Spanish Theatre
    Due to Prince Willem's impeccable organisation, the amphibious landing at Bilbao went off without a hitch and Dutch Armies were laying siege to Bilbao within a week. The Radical government due to it's decentralised nature was slow to respond to the combined Dutch/Carlist threat and with most of the directorio high command and around 42'000 of the Radicals best troops fighting in Arabia had to resort to mobilising peasants to fill the ranks of it's home army. The Radical Home Army was led by General Pedro de Albornoz, a maker of bathrobes who changed his name in honour of his day of birth according to the new Revolutionary calendar. Inexperienced, Indecisive and Haemophobic he was no match for King Frederik's experienced leadership.


    Despite outnumbering the Dutch by 5000 men the Spanish troops were poorly trained, poorly equipped and poorly led, suffering three times the number of casualties as their better led, trained and equipped opponents at the Battle of Bilbao. The Radicals artillery failed to play a part in the battle and hence were left unscathed.

    The Radicals fled westward like rats with their tails between their legs to the province of Santander. The arrival of the reserves left the bulk of the Dutch army free to pursue, although this time the Radicals were better prepared. General de Albornoz having seen the effectiveness of the Dutch cavalry in the Battle of Bilbao was finally convinced to let his men ride horses into battle, although he was still unconvinced by artillery.


    The Battle of Santander was another resounding victory for the Dutch forces, with the Radicals losing half their army. Despite the valiant efforts of the Basque Volunteer Corps Pedro managed to keep his head while 13'000 Radical infantrymen were not such good runners.

    Word of the victories in Spain soon reached home, and it was not too long before word crossed the border and reached the Emperor in Paris. On August the 18th, Emperor Napoleon III declared war on Radical Spain under the pretense of "liberating" the Catholics of Catalonia from Spanish rule. Prince Willem's fears were soon realised as the French stormed through Catalonia while the bulk of the Radical (and Dutch) forces were in Leon.


    Having realised the errors of his ways Pedro de Albornoz was finally convinced to let the Radical artillery partake in battle, this however severely hampered their running ability and over half the Radical Spanish Artillery Corps were wiped out in one battle

    The directorio soon lost faith in de Albornoz and sent 18'000 regulars under General Pascual Alcala-Zapata, a veteran of the Hedjaz campaign to relieve Leon. The second Battle of Leon was notable as being the only battle of the Spanish theatre to have been fought by forces on relatively equal footing.


    Nevertheless it was an easy victory for the Dutch: the Spaniards lost over half of their 18'000 troops, the Dutch inflicting nine times the number of casualties than the Spaniards inflicted on the Dutch.

    With most of their regular army either trapped by Prince Willem's naval blockade of Hedjaz or regrouping from their defeats at Leon, the Directorio was forced to rely solely on volunteers and conscripts. Prince Willem's marines launched a daring amphibious assault on both Seville and Valencia closing in on Madrid on three fronts: Victories against the haphazard radicals were won in Vigo, La Coruna, Valladolid, Seville, Valencia, Granada, Cordoba, Salamanca, Teruel and Caceres.

    Things went from bad to worse for the Radicals as Montenegro, the sole ally of Radical Spain and ironically an Orthodox Christian Theocracy sought a white peace on St. Valentine's day 1873. The Radicals negotiated an unpopular peace deal with the French, ceding Catalonia and the Balearic isles to the Second French Empire. The deal was so unpopular that anarchists across Spain rose in rebellion against both the Carlists and the directorio, such as the "Traitors Uprising" in Bilbao.


    The "Traitors Uprising" in occupied Bilbao was openly hostile to the Carlists and the Directorio alike

    Madrid was captured by Dutch forces on the 21st of April 1874 with peace being signed on the 17th of June, coinciding with the restoration of the Carlist monarchy to the Spanish throne.


    Territory annexed by France during the War of French Aggression (1873)

    The Pacific Theatre: The Illustrado's Rebellion

    While King Frederik focused his attentions on Spain and restoring the Carlists, the real war wast to be fought in the Pacific, where territorial gain or religious zeal rather than legitimacy was the prime motivation. Governeur-Generaal Pieter Mijer appointed the recently disgraced Graaf van Java, Jan Jacob Rochussen as Commander in chief of the Dutch Colonial Army, who was reportedly keen on clearing his family's name.

    The war was extremely popular throughout the Empire, and especially in the predominately Muslim Dutch East Indies. Rochussen was quick to capitalise on the show of support by the Javanese population by appointing a Javanese royal, Sultan Hamengkubuwana VI as deputy commander of the Dutch Colonial forces. Like the war itself, this move was extremely popular amongst East Indians from all walks of life and even the Indonesian independence activist Imam Bonjol supported the war, to the point of proclaiming a Jihad against Spain. These two actions further encouraged many thousands of Dutch colonial subjects to enlist in the army and navy.


    Sultan Hamengkubuwana VI, MWO, GNR, HOCS was the first ever ethnic Javanese to be appointed a General of the Dutch Army. His bravery and valour as a frontline general won him the acclaim of both his soldiers and peers, including the King.

    Paradoxically, the Spanish Colonial Army division in The Philippines (Ejército de Fillipinas) was stationed in Puerto Rico for most of the war, and spent more time fighting in South America than in Southeast Asia. Early Reconnaissance reports from the Dutch Colonial Navy showed that Spain left The Philippines completely undefended. The Dutch forces marched into Spain's Asian possessions with high spirits and the expectation of a quick and easy victory, Rochussen famously proclaiming the war "would be over by Christmas".

    The Filipinos however had a rude surprise for the optimistic Rochussen: The Philippines was practically a theocracy, with the Catholic clergy holding more power than the governor-general. Obviously this was out of step with the direction the anti-theist regime were taking in mainland Spain, and the Radicals tasked the new governor-general with cracking down on the clergy and religious practice in general.

    These measures led to a protest by influential members of the Filipino clergy and their supporters, with three priests leading the counter-revolutionary charge: Mariano Gómez, José Burgos and Jacinto Zamora. The Radicals were quick to silence the three priests and had them executed publicly in order to set an example to the rest of the clergy.

    Marcelo Hilario del Pilar, a leading Spanish-educated Filipino thinker and scholar (known as an Illustrado in Spanish) was outraged by the actions of the Radical government and proposed that the only way to safeguard Filipino morals and ethics (such as religious practice) was for The Philippines to become an independent nation. His ideas quickly spread from the middle class to the common man and young men across the country began organising revolutionary brigades in the name of God and Nation.


    A band of Filipino Revolutionaries

    Unfortunately for Jan Rochussen the rebellion couldn't have come at a worse time, with the small Spanish presence defeated within a few days, the nationalists quickly turned their attention to the invading Dutch. What they lacked in numbers and equipment they made up with zeal and an intimate knowledge of the land and were able to wage a long and protracted guerrilla war against the Dutch Colonial Army. Despite the resilience of the Filipino revolutionaries, their shortness in number and lack of organisation and equipment meant that defeat at the hands of the Dutch was inevitable, although it is worth noting that the Dutch delayed signing a peace with Spain by three months in order to fully pacify The Philippines.


    The Ejército de Fillipinas made a belated appearance in the Pacific Theatre when it besieged Banda Aceh, the only Dutch-Spanish engagement in the pacific to take place during the war.

    The Treaty of Madrid
    The reconstruction of Spain and Hedjaz began during the conference of Madrid, held at the Palacio Real de Madrid. King Carlos VII of Spain (as he was now officially known) had already agreed before the war to hand over Spain's Asian colonies to The Netherlands on practical grounds: The revolution and subsequent anarchist regime had greatly depleted the Spanish treasury to the point of near bankruptcy, the Carlist government couldn't hope to afford both an Atlantic and Pacific fleet and Cuba was much cheaper to maintain. As compensation The Netherlands paid a sum of 15 million Guilders as compensation in addition to a further 5 million for Guam and the Caroline islands.


    Territory ceded to The Netherlands during the Treaty of Madrid.


    Dutch possessions in Southeast Asia (1874)

    The next issue of contention was Hedjaz. King Frederik insisted that Hedjaz be granted independence and that the holy cities of Makkah (Mecca) and Madinah (Medina) be rebuilt. King Carlos reluctantly agreed to pay a sum of 120 million Pesetas (50 million Guilders) as compensation for the radical invasion and subsequent destruction of the two holy cities. Hedjaz was to become a protectorate of The Netherlands with a government, military, constitution and law based on Dutch lines. In lieu of a monarch, a Grand Ayatollah was appointed head of state with a head of government elected by the people, while Islam was made the state religion and Arabic the official language Jews and Christians were not to face discrimination and Dutch was to be taught as a second language in schools out of respect to the Dutch liberators. Finally a new secular capital was to be built in-between Makkah and Madinah by dutch labour and funds, this was done to allow Dutch administrators to assist in the governance of the new state who as non-Muslims couldn't otherwise if the capital was in either holy city.


    The Dutch Protectorate of Hedjaz, rebuilt with Spanish money, Dutch ideas and Dutch labour: thousands of Muslims from across the Dutch Empire volunteered to assist in the reconstruction of the holy cities.

    Finally came the reconstruction of Spain itself, obviously the Carlists would be restored to power and Carlos VII instated as King but changes would have to be made in order to stop an anarchist rebellion from ever occurring again. King Carlos' first goal was to restore the Church to it's former glory, and grand cathedral building projects began popping up all over the Spanish Empire, financed by generous low-interest loans provided by Banks in Amsterdam and Rotterdam. Second came the army, which in light of France's recent aggression was considered a top priority by both Kings Carlos and Frederik. Once again the Dutch came to the rescue with money, equipment and expertise offering to equip, train and fund a modern Spanish army in order to curb against French aggression. Finally came political change within Spain itself which was to be achieved by 1877 by what would later be called the "Three Year Plan"

    The Three Year Plan had three main goals, the first and most important was to establish a government on Dutch lines which was very attractive to King Carlos, as it gave him tremendous power while satisfying the demands of his more Liberal aristocrats, thus removing their incentive to rebel. The second goal was to reward the "loyal provinces" of the basque population by reinstating the Fueros or local laws. Under the condition that the Basque peoples respected the authority of the Spanish king and remained loyal subjects of the Spanish Empire they were granted special rights, such as self-government in the form of a devolved assembly (like the one in Java) and the right to set their own tax rates and their own provincial flag.


    Flag of the Basque Autonomous Province. The green represents the Basque peoples while the white cross represents Catholicism and the holy church. The Burgundy cross is obviously a mark of respect and gratitude to Spain and the Carlist king while the orange sinister is a mark of respect and gratitude to the Dutch people for their role in Spanish (and thus Basque) liberation.

    Whereas the Basques were rewarded for their loyalty the Catalans were punished for their disloyalty, perceived or real. The third point was the purging of anarchist and radical elements in society, and the deliverance of justice to those who collaborated with the Radicals. Although it is indeed true that many Catalans supported the Radical government and that many of it's leaders were Catalan or of Catalan ancestry, many Catalans were accused of collaboration and discriminated against, tortured by vengeful mobs or killed on the basis of being Catalan, rather than by where their actual loyalties lay. Just as "Basque" became synonymous with "Loyalist" and "Resistance" "Catalan" became synonymous with "traitor" and "Collaboration" and many Catalans fled to sanctuary in France. The number of Anarchists and Radical Collaborators to be tried and either imprisoned and/or executed by the Carlist Government is estimated at 40'000 though this number does not include victims of vigilante or mob violence. For decades after many people who were identified as or perceived to be collaborators were shunned while those who were identified as or lied about involvement with the Carlist resistance were revered and treated as heroes.


    Flag of the Spanish Empire from 1874-1877, the Burgundian Cross was a symbol of the Carlist monarchy since the days of Carlos V. From 1877 onwards King Carlos reinstated the former Spanish flag as an act of reconciliation and as a sign that the "transition period" was over and that the goals enshrined in the three year plan had been achieved. The Burgundian Cross Flag henceforth became the Royal Standard, and is still flown from properties owned by the Spanish Crown or when the monarch or any member of the royal family is present.

    The warming of relations between two formerly bitter enemies and rivals would later translate into a full-blown alliance between Spain and The Netherlands known as the Entendimiento Cordial, signed in 1877 and still in force to this very day.



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  5. #285
    Human Enewald's Avatar
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    The world runs with Dutch money.

  6. #286
    Quote Originally Posted by Enewald View Post
    The world runs with Dutch money.
    Just business as usual

    Nevertheless fine update...Spanish-Dutch war before the USA could even think about the possibility of taking the Phillipines and Guam themselves, nice move! I like the way you put different ideologies and cultures together, I think that for example the Java General is a clever move...and by liberating the Hejaz as a Dutch protectorate will ensure the loyalty of the mostly Muslim population in the Dutch East Indies.

    I think that the conflict with France is not far away...what about the rest of Europe, how are the different German states doing? Is there already a possibility for a grand European war? It would be nice to liberate Duinkerken and Rijssel (lille) as well, as they were historically part of the Union of Atrecht etc.

    Nice work!

    Tim

  7. #287
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    Enewald: Yes, in this timeline it does, the Dutch national bank is the second most wealthy in the world due to it's wealthy Javan investors.

    Timmie: I think it's fair to say war with France is definitely on the cards, in Vicky II the French AI loves to take large swaths of land from Spain as much as the British AI loves to take large swathes of land from China. However, The Netherlands will seek no concessions from France (in order to take Dunkirk I'd have to take all of Picardie).

    You can expect a major war of revanchism on the scale of the Seven Years War, If King Frederik gets his way it will also mark the start of a new alliance bloc.
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  8. #288
    This is from back in the day, 2-11-2010:

    Quote Originally Posted by Middelkerke View Post
    Time to go for indochine. Or attack Spain to get the Philippens.
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  10. #290
    Argentina Delenda Est Tanzhang (譚張)'s Avatar
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    Middelkerke: Well to be honest the annexation of The Philippines did not and does not sit well with me. I don't like having to cheat and I only did so based on the fact that it would be historically plausible (just replace Cuba with Hedjaz and Puerto Rico with the Caroline Islands and you have the outcome of the Spanish-American War). It shall not happen again.

    FlorisDeVijfde: Well, I'm yet to play the war with France so the alliance with Spain may turn out to be more trouble than it's worth.
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  11. #291
    Part Time Warp aldriq's Avatar
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    Quite a chapter that was! Very well put together, although in the peace conditions/outcome for Spain you've really stretched the limits of plausibility I can see the whole Oranje-Carlist alliance and even the Philippines used as payment in kind... but on top of that, on top of the loss of Catalonia and Baleares to France, you also demand the release of Hedjaz and war reparations? After that I don't think even the most fervent right-leaning Spaniards would see Carlos as a particularly triumphal or effective king...

    I hope you can redeem Carlos and the alliance through a good war with France where the Netherlands helps Spain recover the lost states... or else the Carlist regime should collapse.
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  12. #292
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    aldriq: Remember that Spain was a very conservative, catholic nation back in the 19th Century and to some extent still is a very conservative, catholic nation. I think your average Castillian or Basque Spaniard would be far more content knowing he can practice his faith without being shot (and not to mention the right to devolved self government in the case of the Basques, a huge motivator for Basque support of both the Carlists before and for the Republicans during the civil war) than discontent knowing his nation lost a region of Arabia he couldn't care less about (hell, how many Britons gave a stuff about India until it was too late?, and they were there for some 200 years, Spain's only been in Arabia for five).

    Having now played through the "Selfless War" with France, I can assure you that The Netherlands will bear much (read all) of the burden in the fight to keep Spain free, and while Carlos will in fact do very little to actually fight the French, he'll do enough to win the hearts of his people and regain respectability for his nation in the eyes of his people and the rest of Europe, if you know what I mean.
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  13. #293
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    aldriq: ...although in the peace conditions/outcome for Spain you've really stretched the limits of plausibility

    the war reparations was the only part that lacked plausibility, and that only partially ! ! :

    in my mind it was justified as it gave The Netherlands control over the purse strings ! !

    which, when you are dealing with an AI, is necessary

    Tanzhang (譚張):
    ...Having now played through the "Selfless War" with France...

    looking forward to that update ! !

    magnificent update ! !
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  14. #294
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    I actually read the latest update a bit ago and didn't reply (for whatever dumb reason), but since I feel the motivation to do so, I must say that I simply love your AAR. Keep up the great work
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  15. #295
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    I've finally caught up with this, although I started reading it long ago. Brilliant! France got its opportunistic prize out of the war but the Netherlands got everything else. With the Spanish Pacific colonies conquered, Benelux unified, the borders with the UK in Asia and South Africa demarcated and Spain in the Netherlands' SOI, it appears France will be the focus of Dutch foreign policy, out of necessity. I eagerly await the next chapter.
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  16. #296
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    GhostWriter: The bit about reparations is purely story flavour, it has no actual bearing to what's happening in game. Many nations in game (including Spain) do however borrow money from The Netherlands.

    Seek75: Thank you and welcome

    Selzro: Welcome! France will indeed be a focus of Dutch policy of the 1880's however it won't be the only one. Another colonial rivalry will emerge between the Dutch and a non-French nation which for now shall remain nameless.

    I'm afraid you'll all have to wait a little longer for the "Selfless War" update, I have an election update to write up first (I like to have elections concluded before major wars, unfortunately Vicky II doesn't...) the update will feature a Churchillian account (ie. heavily biased in favour of it's subject) of Dekker's handling of the war with Spain, the completion of the "Oranje Map", that new colonial rivalry I mentioned and a new school of thought for the CZP. Most of it's already written up, I'm just holding off the rest in favour of a little extra research.
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  17. #297
    F-CEO of EUIV:MEIOU and Taxes gigau's Avatar
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    I have been quite busy, so i deserted the AARLand for quite some time (except for a couple of EUIII AARs i suscribed). As a return personnal treat, i make my come back to the VickyII AAR section with my top favorite when i was judge in Alex's Contest. My sincere congratulations for winning the first prize that i hoped you'd get.

    It's pleasure that i see that it continues nicely. Congratz on increasing your influence and your colonies
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  18. #298
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    gigau: Thanks, I wouldn't have won it without you! Since I believe this is technically your first comment, welcome aboard! Hopefully it's the first of many
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    The 1877 Election

    Colonisation and the Home Front: Dekker's Third Term
    As Prime Minister Dekker was responsible for holding the country together in what was the most brutal and taxing war The Netherlands had fought since the time of Napoleon. Keeping his election promise, Dekker began his term with a massive industrialisation scheme to slash unemployment, building new factories faster than craftsmen could fill them.



    While most governments of the day favoured a small standing army and a large reserve as it was far cheaper to govern in peacetime, King Frederik and Dekker did not. Whereas King Frederik favoured a large standing army on militaristic grounds, Dekker paradoxically favoured one on economic grounds. Dekker and Dekker alone of world leaders for the next fifty years understood the potential damage a protracted war fought with unprofessional soldiers would have on an Industrial economy, attacking proposals for conscription and mass mobilisation at every opportunity. Along with Prince Willem prime Minister Dekker presided over the creation of the Royal Dutch marines, and with his protege the Minister for Armament (rising star Jan Heemskerk) focused on the creation of elite regiments of Guard Infantry and Cuirassiers rather than Regular Infantry and Cavalry.


    Prime Minister Dekker's insistence on using only professional troops meant that The Netherlands were able to Increase rather than decrease the net size of their army and industrial workforce during the Second Spanish-Netherlands War. Frederikan-Dekkerian theories on standing armies and mobilisation would influence every Dutch military action since.

    Keeping Industry and the economy going during wartime wasn't always easy though, within only four months of it's establishment the new Ministry for Trade and Industry (MTI) was plagued with corruption and inefficiency. Dekker's answer was swift and just, the old administration was purged (and sent to the Spanish front) and replaced within a week with effective, honest and just administrators.



    During the war with Spain, many Javanese Muslims fought with bravery and distinction, some 550 being awarded medals. Many of these new aristocrats and indeed many of the old ones sent their sons to live and study in the Dutch mainland or migrated to The Netherlands themselves, establishing strong Muslim communities in Leeuwarden and Eindhoven. As these people were legally aristocrats, many in the SDP felt that they should be entitled to vote and in what would be the only piece of new legislation passed during Dekker's third term, all aristocrats were given the legal right to vote or stand for office regardless of religion or ethnicity.

    By reaching out to minorities, Dekker won the support of many of the more radical suffragists of the Liberale Party, which officially only supported enfranchising men of Dutch, Flemish, Walloon or German ethnicity. This support was crucial in the "Wage Slavery" scandal of '77 when against de Decker's orders, a prominent number of Liberale MPs led by Paul Janson (Liberale MP for Liege) crossed the floor and voted to support introduction of Eduard Dekker's first stage of healthcare reforms, breaking de Decker's embargo on social reforms.


    The "Wage Slavery" Crisis of '77 allowed Dekker to pass the first stage of his promised four stage healthcare reforms and caused a lasting rift between Liberales Janson and de Decker.

    Perhaps the greatest legacy of Dekker's third term was the progress The Netherlands made in colonisation. Despite the strain of war Dekker insisted that Dutch colonisation would continue as promised, while Dutch troops were pacifying Manilla plans were made to establish a colony on the northern tip of Brunei.



    After the war immigrants and former soldiers flocked to the colonies and to the East Indies in particular. Population growth in Southeast Asia exploded and by February 1876 Dekker's dream of completing the Oranje Map was fulfilled.


    Dutch possessions in Southeast Asia by February 1875


    Dutch possessions in Southeast Asia by February 1876, the completion of the "Oranje Map"

    With Southeast Asia under firm Dutch rule, Dekker turned his attention to Africa. The Dutch had been present in the continent since the colonisation of the Dutch Gold Coast in 1598 and had slowly expanded their holdings over the next 200 years at the expense of the Portuguese and the Xhosa tribe of southern Africa. This expansion was cut short by the Napoleonic Wars which ceded all Dutch possessions in Africa, including the strategically important Cape Colony to Britain. At the Congress of Wien only the forts on the Gold Coast (the modern day city of Sekondi in Ghana) were returned to The Netherlands, and as seen in the wars with Denmark and China, the Ghanaian Forts were often considered more trouble than they were worth.

    Reports of large amounts of wild Coffee and Cacao plants to the north convinced the Dutch administration in Fort Oranje that there may be some worth in their colony after all and with the blessing of the colonial secretary botanical expeditions were carried out to find the locations of these plants. The discovery of coffee plants north of Sekondi and Cotton near Omani Mogadishu convinced Dekker that it was worth rethinking colonial attitudes towards Africa and by the end of his term there were well-established Dutch colonies in modern day Ghana and Somalia.


    By the end of the decade, The Netherlands was the world's largest grower and exporter of Coffee, growing and exporting an amount more than double than that of the four next highest growers and exporters combined. In 1877 The Netherlands' domestic demand for coffee made up one fifth of the total world demand.

    The Netherlands wasn't the only country to make territorial gains during the 1870's however, President and hero of the Civil War Ulysses S. Grant gave the United States it's first border on the Pacific Ocean when he authorised the purchase of Alaska (or the Russian North American Territory) from Russia for the sum of $7.2 Million US Dollars. Shortly after, Grant also authorised the diplomatic annexation of the Kingdom of Hawaii into the United States on behalf of American business interests in the region (liquor mostly) and at the expense of British, French and especially Dutch mercantile aspirations.



    Hawaii was an important waystation for the Dutch Liquor trade, lying in-between the profitable domestic market (Java) and the most profitable foreign market (Colombia). It's loss was a blow for Dutch trade but it wasn't the end of the world, more importantly though it was an American imperialist action in what was considered since the war with Spain to be The Netherlands backyard, Oceania. Just as Americans believed in "Manifest Destiny" and of an America which stretched from New York to San Francisco, Dutch missionaries believed that it was Holland's divine right to preach and rule all of the islands "west of Balboa". The Annexation of Hawaii was therefore an affront to both Dutch Sovereignty and to God.

    The Colonial Office could take some comfort in knowing that although the United States controlled Hawaii they had little means of which to defend it, after all their only territory facing the Pacific was Alaska, another island (in a political sense) and one without any infrastructure or bases to support anything more than a small garrison, let alone a Pacific Fleet. It would seem that further American imperial aspirations in the Pacific would be unlikely.

    These hopes were dashed in early 1877 when newly-elected President Samuel J. Tilden declared war on Mexico, ordering all US troops stationed in the south to march on Oklahoma and those in the north to take Oregon. "The war of the Oregon concession" as it would be later known ended in a swift victory for the Americans and the incorporation of the Oregon Territory into the United States [1].

    Although many Republicans, contemporary commentators and future historians consider the war to be a rather creative way of ending Reconstruction rather than a prelude to any imperial actions in Oceania to Prime Minister Dekker and the people of The Netherlands it was seen as proof that the United States were serious about threatening the Dutch territorial monopoly in the pacific islands. Dekker and the pro-SDP press played up fears as best they could, the state of the Pacific Fleet and Oceanic expansion would play a major part in election campaigns as a general anti-American feeling swept the country like a hurricane.

    Ferdinand Domela Nieuwenhuis and the Birth of Christian Socialism
    Born into a family of Lutheran preachers, it came as little shock to his friends and family that Ferdinand Domela Nieuwenhuis would become a preacher himself. Interested in politics and social justice since his youth, Ferdinand joined the CZP while he was still completing his Theological studies although he was not explicitly a Calvinist, and upon completing his studies represented his parish in the Burgerkamer in addition to his duties as preacher.

    Like many other Dutchmen of his era, Ferdinand was deeply affected by the Industrial revolution and the more adverse effects it had on it's lifeblood, the factory workers. Ferdinand's parish was located near Groningen, the most industrialised area in Friesland, and he was deeply concerned for the well being of the industrial workers who made up a large part of his congregation. The more he learned of the plight of the workers the more he questioned his faith and the more he flirted with socialism, he even contemplated leaving the priesthood and joining the SDP at one point.

    It was during this despair and inner turmoil that Ferdinand reached something of an epiphany, he realised, according to his autobiography, that both socialism and Christianity had the same core message and could be used in tandem to alleviate the physical and spiritual needs of the Dutch people. Ferdinand spent the next eight months writing a treatise outlying his basic ideas and philosophy, drawing heavily on the Bible and the works of Dekker, Weitling and van Prinsterer. He began writing at a furious pace, on average twenty-five to thirty pages a day according to his autobiography, and published his treatise Vom Versäulung und Sozialismus in German and Dutch in 1876.

    Central to Ferdinand's theory was van Prinsterer's principle of Verzuiling. Ferdinand argued that socialism (or rather, what he understood socialism to be) could be used as a stepping stone towards achieving Verzuiling. In short, Ferdinand viscerally rejected the principles of classlessness and international revolution and proposed that socialism should be used to achieve segregation (by religious grounds) rather than destroy segregation.

    Vom Versäulung und Sozialismus was universally rejected by the socialists of the era, and received scathing reviews from radicals and moderates alike, even the Prime Minister condemned it, saying that it was "utterly disgusting that someone would try to make common ground between two forces of equality and one for discrimination". What irked the wrath of most critics however was it's utter rejection of revolution, the work was in the words of one critic "Anti-Revolutionary". The name stuck, and supporters of Ferdinand's theories classified themselves as Anti-Revolutionaries.

    Deputy leader of the CZP and one of Verzuiling's strongest supporters, Abraham Kupyer was an enthusiastic supporter of Ferdinand's Anti-Revolutionary thought, introducing CZP leader Aeneas Mackay to Anti-Revolutionary thought. Scholars of Dutch politics have long debated whether or not Kupyer had any real attachment to Anti-Revolutionary thought or whether he simply saw it's potential as an election winner (he was known for his disdain for socialism and to be a pragmatist who would agree to just about anything in order to make Verzuiling a reality).


    Ferdinand Domela Nieuwenhuis was still a commoner in 1877, and thus could only represent his party in the powerless Burgerkamer. Although unable to stand for office or vote in the general election, his theories and policies had a profound effect on the 1877 election's outcome and the CZP's future success.


    The 1877 Election: Parties and Results

    The SDP (Social-Demo Partij)
    In contrast to the election of 1871, Eduard Dekker and the SDP entered the 1877 election on a high: while Dekker had served two terms as Prime Minister when leader of the Royalists most of the other SDP ministers had never served in government before, their effective administration during the war with Spain boosted the prestige of the SDP as a whole and quashed claims of inexperience slung by the opposition. Prestige has it's benefits, and party membership increased tenfold from it's size in 1871, many of it's new members were newly enfranchised Javanese Muslims and with them estates of considerable wealth. For the first time in it's history, the SDP could afford to contest every constituency.

    Dekker focused heavily on colonial and military policy. He campaigned on increasing the size of the army and navy, capitalising on the Americophobia of the day. He also proposed funding for a new colony in Micronesia, to be settled by a combination of Dutch and Spanish settlers and for Dutch expansion in the Gold Coast and Somalia.

    On the issue of Social reforms the SDP promised to put through the remaining three stages of their initial heathcare reform. Free from their alliance commitments the SDP were no longer under pressure to support political reforms, and did not support any further reforms to press rights or electoral reform.

    Liberale Party (Liberale Partij)
    Following the rather disastrous (from a Liberale point of view) coalition with the SDP, and the death of Thorbecke (who assumed a nearly legendary status in the Dutch liberal movement) Pierre de Decker was left to restructure the failing Liberales on his own. Pierre focused on political reform, promising to extend suffrage to the middle class in addition to introducing a more proportional electorate system and reforming the press laws as promised under Thorbecke in 1871. There was still a great deal of hostility between the Liberales and the SDP, and Pierre refused to pass any further social reforms if elected, angering the more progressive members of the party. Pierre de Decker criticised the enfranchisement of minority aristocrats as "a smoke screen to the real issue" (enfranchising the middle class) and dismissed it as a gerrymander tactic by the SDP. Nevertheless he promised not to rescind the policy if elected.

    The Liberales uncharacteristically vowed to increase military spending, as Pierre de Decker thought it would be foolish to take an anti-military stance after successful war. He also promised to increase the size of the navy in case of American aggression, cut taxes by sixty percent, tariffs by five percent and slow colonial growth.

    The Royalist Party (Oranje Partij)
    The Royalists suffered their worst ever election defeat in 1871, despite popular policies and a capable leader in Theodoor van Lynden. van Lynden tried to appeal to the Jingoistic mood of the time by promising to double any increase in military spending proposed by either the Liberales, the SDP or the CZP. van Lynden took an aggressive stance towards the United States and promised to defend the interests of the Dutch Liquor Industry, by force if necessary.

    van Lynden criticised de Decker's classical Liberal economic plan, insisting that Free Trade and Laissez Faire economics if implemented, would wreck the nation. On colonial policy, the Royalists promised to focus on Oceania, and laid plans for colonies in both Micronesia and the islands of Midway, Wake, Pago Pago and Palmyra near Hawaii, which were claimed by the United States but not yet under American rule. van Lynden was very keen to stress the urgency of snapping up these islands before it was too late, and criticised the other three parties on being "soft on the United States".

    In regards to the enfranchisement of minority aristocrats, van Lynden proposed that Dekker's decision to enfranchise them without permission from the Ridderkamer was constitutional (it wasn't as Dekker had permission from the King, whose word on such matters was final in the days of King Frederik) and that a whites-only referendum should be held on the issue.

    The CZP (Calvinistische Zuil Partij)
    Perhaps no other party besides the SDP went into the 1877 election with as much optimism as Aeneas Mackay's CZP. Armed with a new doctrine (Ferdinand's Anti-Revolutionary Thought) Aeneas promised the most centrist manifesto of the four parties. Aeneas promised to increase military spending to match whatever the SDP or Liberales promised, and to fund this increase through tariffs rather than cuts to the colonial budget. Aeneas proposed one social reform in the form of a small yet significant pension to be awarded to all veterans of the Second Spanish-Netherlands war and a slightly larger one for officers and was extremely popular among the military for doing so. He also proposed to introduce a new electoral system based on the theories of Belgian mathematician Victor D'Hont, which had been well-tested and used in the former Belgian state as well as Spain (before the switch to Proportional Representation in the 1860's) Chile, Brasil, Argentina, Switzerland, Portugal, Ecuador, Columbia and Venezuela since 1836 or prior.

    Aeneas favoured further industrial expansion along with further nationalisation of factories and increased tariffs. He supported calls for further colonies in Micronesia if only to slow the Americans down, but felt that focus should shift to Africa. The CZP promised to recruit more African divisions and launch an invasion of the independent African kingdom of Sokoto, near the Dutch Gold Coast, which was coming under increasing American influence.

    In an action which (perhaps unnecessarily) surprised many, the CZP wholeheartedly supported Dekker's enfranchisement of minorities and promised to no rescind the policy of duly elected. The CZP had traditionally been considered a reactionary and perhaps racist party (they had voted for a return to the Cultivation System or Cultuurstelsel and a revocation of Ethische Politiek back when they were still the Agricultural Party) but their leader Aeneas Mackay, who was born in The Netherlands but of Scottish ancestry, sympathised with the plight of the Javanese aristocrats.

    Election Results


    The 1877 election was a runaway success for Dekker and the reigning SDP taking eight seats, up two from 1871 and including Luxembourg, which had been held by the Royalists since it's creation as an electoral constituency in 1867. The Liberales also won eight seats, down three from 1871, losing Breda to the SDP, Thorbecke's old seat of Zwolle to the CZP and Hasselt to the Royalists. The CZP won a record five seats, up two from 1871, taking Groningen from the SDP, Zwolle from the Liberales and Assen from the Royalists. The former powerhouse that was the Royalists managed only a paltry three seats, down from five in 1871, a massive thirteen in 1867 and seven in 1862. particularly embarrassing for van Lynden was the loss of Luxembourg, which was considered the safest Royalist seat in the electorate.


    The SDP won the popular vote with 42 percent while de Decker still managed a strong showing of 31 percent for the Liberales. The CZP received a disappointing 17 percent, an increase of seven percent from last time while the Royalists suffered an embarrassing low of only 10 percent.


    The Ridderkamer after the 1877 Election: SDP 32%, Royalists 30%, Liberales 24% and the CZP 14%

    Although the SDP and the Liberales had each won eight seats, the SDP had the highest share of the popular vote and was hence invited to form a minority government by King Frederik. Eduard Dekker turned to his old party for support, forming a coalition with the waning Royalists. Theodoor van Lynden, who was desperate for a chance in power to revive his party's fortunes accepted without any concessions to Dekker's policy, and in an unpopular move served as Minister of Finance rather than Deputy Prime Minister, that honour as well as the position of Minister for Home Affairs was given to SDP deputy Jan Heemskerk. In a reconcilatory gesture Dekker appointed his former deputy Jan Rochussen as Governor of the Dutch East Indies while retaining the position of Colonial Secretary for himself (it was not uncommon for Prime Ministers to hold other offices back in the 19th Century.).

    On the 15th of November 1877, Eduard Dekker commenced his fourth and last term as Prime Minister of The Netherlands, one which would go down in history as his finest hour.

    Note:
    [1] Actually this happened shortly before the Alaska Purchase, but it would be improper to have had this occur while Grant was still President due to his opposition to war with Mexico in our timeline.
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  20. #300
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    I do hope the Netherlands shall experience some sort of socialist movement by the end of the century. Ths SDP can barely even be consdered a social-democratic group.

    Your industrial score seems rather low. Have you not been using your NFs for craftsmen? That seems to be the only sure fire way to get good industrial growth prior to the urban population explosion when your RGOs fill up.

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