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Thread: The Torch of the Mediterranean: A Socialist Republic of Italy Kaiserreich AAR

  1. #201
    Quote Originally Posted by thekonkoe View Post
    I can see how as a non-puppet member of Mitteleurope, Poland may conceivably be penalized for its participation in the war. However, in the aftermath of the Weltkrieg it was subordinate to the whims of the Germanophone Empires. Furthermore, this war was launched over the possession on Alsace-Lorraine/Elsas-Lothringen, for France revenging the defeats of 1871 and 1918 is central to the war, perhaps as important or more so than spreading the revolution. As the largest contributing member of the International and controller of the occupied territories of the dismantled empire, they are simply exercising the need to satisfy their need for revenge. Istria with the exception of Triest is not majority Italian, but concession must be made to those demanding Italia Irredenta. Hopefully, by penalizing the future German Socialist State in the East, nationalist elements will be more willing to compromise on the issue of the western frontier with CoF.
    For the record, here's the territories Poland seems to have been awarded that had formally belonged to Germany:

    All of West Prussia
    East Prussia south of Konigsburg
    Silesia north and east of the Oder

    This puts the Polish border both farther west and farther north than the Second Republic's borders in OTL. And you know what? That's fine. Both Germany and Poland were conquered enemies, and both are to be integrated into the Syndintern. The important consideration is not historical or even ethnic borders: the important consideration is what the Syndicalist movements of these territories will be able to govern once entrusted with power. In the situation as it's developed, with a German syndicalist movement emerging from pre-war repression and a wartime state of seige, it makes absolute sense to give as much territory as possible to Poland in the short term. Future border adjustments can be worked out between the governments of Germany and Poland once those governments are both securely syndicalist, with the fraternal oversight/mediation of France, Britain, Italy, and the rest of the Syndintern.

    Also, for the record, all support to Italian rule over Istria. Natural boundaries (such as the water divide on which DH draws the eastern border of Istria) deserve great consideration inasmuch as they help draw a territory into an economically united unit. Not to mention it looks nicer on the map.
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  2. #202
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    Thanks for the comments everyone. I'll try to respond to what seems to be the more common questions from you all:

    -For Poland's newly gained territories: I have no control over it. The event that fires when the CoF conquers Poland more often than not results in France releasing a friendly Poland that gets the cores it is programmed with in the revolt file- which is what you see there. I was expecting the event concerning Germany to fire before the Poland one, but Germany took longer than expected for the event to fire, and France moved quicker than I thought it would. Thus France gave it territories belonging to the German cores.

    The only game modification I've done event wise is some tweaking to Italy's end. I haven't concerned myself with France's events.

    -As for the big bear and its threat to the Syndintern. The only thing they have on Russia is tech and training. Russia has not really been involved in serious wars so far that has drained its manpower- so it's pretty much been sitting on a shit-ton of manpower for much of the game. My manpower is below 10 now, and the Commune of France is actually hovering around 20 when I checked them out in my save game. This war against Germany had taken a severe toll on manpower and I'm curious to see how far the Syndintern could proceed into Russia before it runs out of steam.

    Now if the Combined Syndicates would join, that would be a different story. The event that usually fires involving the Commune of France inviting the Combined Syndicates never happened. This may be due to how quickly the Syndicates got into a war with the Pacific States, making it at war and thus not able to trigger the conditions of the event.

    -For Baron's question on the other wars currently going on:

    The South American war has horribly stalemated. That is one of the reasons why I haven't bothered covering it because I simply can't think of anything to say about it. Argentina seemed to have at first broken Brazil's back and was moving in for the kill, but Brazil kept it from proceeding further than its southern border provinces. Bolivia surprisingly hasn't folded either. I think they ran out of manpower on both ends and the AI has become very cautious in its movements.

    Personally I like to think they are just launching empanadas at each other by this point. If you may recall there is another war going on in Latin America- the conquest of Panama by the United Provinces. Except it has never ended. It's still ongoing because of one reason: the UP can't take down Panama city because the Panama Canal is inaccessible to them and they can't do naval landings.

    In South Asia the war between Bengal and Princely Federation also stagnated. But the momentum seems to be on the Princely Federation's end.

    As for Japan, they just consolidated everything. Netherlands didn't give them much resistance in Indonesia.

    The Ottomans will receive their own pain train soon enough though. But I can't be assed to invade Switzerland- maybe it'll just become the choice exile spot for all the losers in Europe.

    And because the last update took for ever to come along, I'm going to try and get another update on either Saturday or Friday. This will be less on the game play, more in-universe (oh no!) but more on the events that would lead up to the ultimate fate of Germany in the Syndintern.
    Last edited by MercZ; 03-11-2011 at 04:51.
    Torch of the Mediterranean, a Kaiserreich-DH AAR, Weekly AAR Winner 6/19/11, Character Writer of the Week 2/26/12
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  3. #203
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    Quote Originally Posted by zimmerwald1915 View Post
    For the record, here's the territories Poland seems to have been awarded that had formally belonged to Germany:

    All of West Prussia
    East Prussia south of Konigsburg
    Silesia north and east of the Oder

    This puts the Polish border both farther west and farther north than the Second Republic's borders in OTL. And you know what? That's fine. Both Germany and Poland were conquered enemies, and both are to be integrated into the Syndintern. The important consideration is not historical or even ethnic borders: the important consideration is what the Syndicalist movements of these territories will be able to govern once entrusted with power. In the situation as it's developed, with a German syndicalist movement emerging from pre-war repression and a wartime state of seige, it makes absolute sense to give as much territory as possible to Poland in the short term. Future border adjustments can be worked out between the governments of Germany and Poland once those governments are both securely syndicalist, with the fraternal oversight/mediation of France, Britain, Italy, and the rest of the Syndintern.

    Also, for the record, all support to Italian rule over Istria. Natural boundaries (such as the water divide on which DH draws the eastern border of Istria) deserve great consideration inasmuch as they help draw a territory into an economically united unit. Not to mention it looks nicer on the map.
    The Polish syndicalists are in the same situation as the German ones.
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  4. #204
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    The Frankfurt Conference


    Quote Originally Posted by Account from an unnamed Italian soldier participating in the Battle of Berlin
    We arrived to the battle itself rather late- already a few days after the Syndintern forces began to surround Berlin. They had already seized the outlying suburbs and were converging on the center of the city. Potsdam, which contained the residence of the emperor, was captured a few days before.

    In particular the French put a high value on capturing the city’s administrative heart, represented by the Reichstag and Reichskanzlei.

    It was odd entering into Berlin the way we did. Compared to my home near Bari, it was truly a capital that justified its former position at the center of the world. By the time we reached it though, the ravages of war turned it into a mess of rubble, wrecked streets, and concrete slabs intermixed with lightly damaged structures.



    In the last two days of fighting the last of Germany’s government fled further east to Konigsberg where the Germany were attempting to make their last grand stand. At one point when we were assigned to guard captured German defenders, we tried to make conversation with them through one of our squad who had come from Austria.

    We had told them many times that he was no longer in the city and fled long before it was totally surrounded. They were dumbfounded and continued to deny this, thinking we were simply trying to demoralize them.

    I don’t know about the others, but I was genuinely interested in these soldiers. Did they really feel a commitment to the Kaiser? It confused me because many of them seemed to be ‘working class’, and yet continued to fight for an order that kept them oppressed all this time.

    The French eventually took us away from our duties so I could not pursue this line of questioning any longer. We had no bad ‘feelings’ towards the Germans like we did with the Austrians, but the French were definitely reviling in the moment of finally defeating a ‘mortal’ foe. The fall of Berlin was marked by riotous celebration by the French contingents. We, meanwhile, were given an order to return back to Italy in preparation for an invasion of the Ottoman Empire…
    The fall of Berlin in the summer sent shockwaves throughout Europe and the world. In Germany itself the revolutionary groups, which had only been acting clandestinely until then, emerged back into public view and began asserting themselves and creating workers’ councils with the protection of the Syndintern. In the ensuing months the whole structure of nobility and business in Germany- the pride of that empire for so many years- was cast down and destroyed by militias friendly to the revolutionary groups. Nobility, particularly the Junkers of Prussia, who were not fortunate enough to escape with the rest of Germany’s ruling circle as Berlin was engulfed by the war.

    The fate of Germany was determined in the month of December in 1943, in a meeting which had only been discussed in secret among the members of the International. It was only in later years that the world got an idea of the discussions that took place in Frankfurt that would determine the fate of Germany and indeed the balance of power on the continent.

    The following is an excerpt from an interview with Pietro Nenni in 1978, recalling his time as the Director-General for Foreign Affairs in the early years of the Republic. In this portion he refers to the events of the Frankfurt Conference.

    -----------------------------------------------


    I arrived with Comrade Bordiga and Togliatti in Frankfurt on December 2nd, along with a number of other figures from Italy. Frankfurt was chosen as the avenue for the conference on account of it being far from the frontlines while still being in Germany. Comrade Makhno had insisted on this specifically, feeling that holding the conference in Paris would have only made a poor image for the Syndintern. We didn’t want to appear to have been deciding how to ‘loot’ Germany as it were from the chambers in France.

    Bordiga and Togliatti were already debating what to do with Germany on the train to Frankfurt. Bordiga had insisted on the necessity of preventing a partition of Germany, in order to prevent a disintegration of the workers’ movement in Germany and to provide a strong lynchpin in the socialist movement. Togliatti on the other hand, while agreeing with the idea of keeping Germany whole, was skeptical over both the ability of the socialists in Germany to prevent the country from being seized by reactionaries once more and whether the country would come out independent of France or not. In that respect he felt the only way to keep France from getting too powerful would be to partition Germany and allow each of the main member states of the Syndintern to develop the nation.

    Bordiga was confident in the ability of the socialists in Germany to successfully overthrow the old society in the empire. He had, like other members of the Anarcho-Syndicalist alliance, maintained connections with the various pre-Great War Marxists in Germany. Notably this consisted of the ‘radical’ wing grouping around two individuals ultimately- Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht. Both had attempted to lead a revolution in Germany, encouraged by the example of the Commune of France, but simply found the terrain too hostile and narrowly avoided getting murdered on the street by pro-monarchist thugs.


    Luxemburg and Liebknecht in earlier years


    In the ensuing years the two led a ‘radical’ wing of the SPD, which had since the Great War increasingly drifted to the center and essentially jettisoned all remnants of its Marixst beliefs. The old party theoretician Karl Kautsky, once the ‘Dean’ of European Marxism, had largely fallen to the wayside and out of touch with current political currents, becoming only a respectable figurehead in the party. Thus the task of directing revolutionary currents within the old SPD fell to Liebknecht and Luxemburg, heading so-called “Spartacist” platform [1] that closely aligned themselves with the Third International. Communication with the two was however indirect most of the times, though those who had come from the pre-war Marxist camps had desired news of the platform.

    As such Liebknecht and Luxemburg were not unfamiliar to those of us in Italy. In fact the two had managed to smuggle various messages and texts from themselves by way of a messenger who travelled from Germany to Italy by way of Switzerland during the 1938 Rome Congress of the Third International. Gramsci had delivered one of their messages to the assembled delegates during one of the meetings in the Congress. They had informed us of their precarious situation in Germany, only worsening as Germany and France moved ever close to war. Otto Wels, head of the SPD delegation in the Reichstag and a member of the ‘Ebert’ faction within the Party, had agreed to conditions set forth by the Kaiser that decreed that members of government who openly oppose the monarchy should be censured by the party and removed immediately.

    The SPD was already in bad waters as it was. The experience of the war and rising German adversely nationalism affected the traditional working-class base of the SPD, and as such they were willing to throw unfavorable members out of the party if it meant retaining their position in the government. Only through skilled political maneuvering did the Spartacists avoid being expelled out of the party all together, though found themselves without any of their members in the Reichstag with the SPD delegation.

    The Spartacists also had to deal with the rise of Totalism espoused by Mosley and Mussolini that excited the youth who were disillusioned with both the reformism begun by Frederich Ebert and the more orthodox methods of the Spartacists. These men were led by Wilhelm Pieck, a disillusioned member of the Spartacists who found Totalism to be the only ‘feasible’ answer for Europe.

    The lead up to the war and the war itself resulted in the Spartacists being driven underground and repressed. Liebknecht and Luxemburg avoided arrest, though some of their compatriots were imprisoned in the process and many of their cells broken. As such they had only been able to give small aid to the RED when it was operating in Germany.

    As the war ruptured the German political scene, various revolutionary groups emerged from the ashes of war. The SPD leadership consisting of Otto Wels and Hans Vogel was condemned as traitors and kept in house arrest along with others perceived to have ‘abandoned’ socialism. Supporters of the late Karl Kautsky [2] were told to align themselves with one of the emerging factions or risk the fate of the Ebert loyalists.

    It is needless to say that the other bourgeois and monarchist parties had no chance of ever being recognized in the new political climate. It was better that way.

    By the time of the Frankfurt Congress, three factions emerged as potential sources for the new government of the old empire. One such group was the FAUD [Freie Arbeiter Union Deutschlands/Free Workers Union of Germany], consisting of various groups with an anarchist alignment led by Rudolf Rocker, who had recently returned from exile in the Combined Syndicates. The second was the Spartacists, constructed from those who had been a member of Luxemburg and Liebknecht’s “Spartacist” platform in the SPD. The last was the so-called Socialist Unity Party [Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands], led by Wilhelm Pieck.

    We were welcomed by delegates of the Spartacists at the train station. Again, considering our close relationship with the platform historically this was not surprising. Makhno had made it clear he preferred the anarchist FAUD over the more orthodox tendencies- and much less, the Marxist diehards- within the Spartacist platform.

    We were taken to a small café in the city where the Spartacists set up a political station to connect with the worker councils there. Within we were welcomed by Luxemburg and Liebknecht, and much of the first two hours was simply Bordiga, Togliatti, and other senior members of the old socialist party recounting the heyday of social democracy, Marxism, and the Second International.

    Soon the topic of discussion turned towards other matters. Liebknecht and Luxemburg asked us to do what we could to prevent the machinations of the Commune of France becoming a reality in Germany. We were taken back by this- as far as we knew France had not made public its intentions for the remnants of the German Empire.

    Luxemburg took over there. She showed us some documents and testimony from some of the workers who had heard that France was eyeing a partition in order to keep post-war Germany divided and keep France the preeminent power in Europe. While admitting it was all still a ‘theory’, Luxemburg pointed out France’s decision to essentially give away Germany’s eastern fringes to the new Polish state as evidence that France was not wholly concerned with maintain a unified Germany in the Congress.

    “More over”, she said, “I need not tell you the ramifications of a strong Commune of France in Europe and the head of what will become the most powerful organization in the post-war world. Much less Comrade Makhno’s ego.”

    Togliatti, with his head stuck in the question of a potential government, asked if Liebknecht and Luxemburg were eying any sort of positions. Both did not seem warm to the prospect, acknowledging their age and relative isolation from much of the political scene due to security forces scrutiny from the botched uprising after the Great War. They indicated they would still be holding a role in the new order, but not in the spotlight. Liebknecht expressed interest in the position of foreign affairs, while Luxemburg revealed she had been given offers to go to Poland as an advisor to help the socialists there organize and create their system there.

    “Then who will represent the Spartacists?” questioned Togliatti, “Surely it won’t be the same without neither of you at the helm. How can we be sure that it won’t capitulate to Makhno’s schemes?”

    Liebknecht called for someone at the rear of the café who was talking to a group of men to come over. The man was quite different from both Liebknecht and Luxemburg- strong features and sharp blue eyes; a portrait of a “German” if I ever saw one.

    “This is Ernst Thälmann”, said Liebknecht, “A man of the working class and a faithful member of the Spartacists since the beginning. He has been active in the unions for some time and has done all of us a great service, giving the Spartacists a good name among the many workers and associated unions.”


    Ernst Thälmann


    Bordiga was skeptical of Thälmann’s intentions, but came to accept him after discussing various matters of politics with him. He was not as steeped in the original Marxist doctrine that Liebknecht and Luxemburg espoused, but he was certainly more favorable towards the old Marxist doctrine than Makhno’s anarchist positions or the Totalist state-building of Mosley and Mussolini.

    The discussion turned back towards other matters. They discussed the life of Gramsci and his death, the progress in Italy’s unification and its conflict with the Church, as well as Italy’s creation of Yugoslavia. I myself when questioned about Italy’s reputation in the world admitted it had certainly grown in the Syndintern though the abolishment of the Papacy had certainly soured our relationship with the non-socialist states in Latin America.

    For my part I had also admitted to them the difficulty we had sweeping up the remnants of the Church who fled the country and still managed to cause problems. In particular there was the “Sword of God”, the leader of the papal divisions in the American Civil War, who we were yet to find or even identify. Shaking my head I told them they were lucky they did not have to deal with the issue of religion- at least to the level of Italy- in the new Germany. Their concerns could be occupied elsewhere.

    On December 4th the Conference started in earnest. After the usual opening ceremonies and calls for internationalism by the French, we got down into the gritty matters of discussing what was to be done with Germany.

    The first few sessions were easy enough, over concerns about the integration of the imperial military into the new “People’s Army” of Germany and on what basis should we deny commission to former officers of the empire. We also discussed the issue of what to do with the nobility and the questions of land reform and new industrial policy.

    All of this was simple enough. The delegates from the Union of Britain, the Commune of France, the assorted German groups, us, and the observers from the Combined Syndicates found enough common ground. The nobility were to be stripped of their titles and given the option of integrating themselves into the new order. The military would only accept the commission of officers who were not going to instigate a counter-revolution.

    It was when the dialogue turned towards the question of Germany itself did divisions appear among the delegates. What exactly was Germany to become? The Commune of France’s proposal was presented and it was much like Luxemburg had told us it would be- a partition plan.

    Except of course the Commune of France did not present it in such brash terms. Rather, they sugar-coated the matter as an idea to transform Germany into a ‘confederation’ that would avoid the centralization of power in Berlin ever again, to prevent another “Kaiser” from ever being created. This proposal admittedly did not seem much different from another French plan in Germany- the Confederation of the Rhine created by Napoleon from the remains of the Holy Roman Empire and later the “German Confederation” set about in the post-Napoleonic era.

    This plan established four ‘members’ of the Confederation- which would as we’ve seen more than likely be independent nations rather than constituent members of a confederate nation. The first was ‘Rhineland’, to be formed in regions between the French border and the Rhine River, with its capital at Cologne. Another would be the North German Federation, forming much of the northwest portion of Germany along the coast with its capital at Hamburg. The third was a Bavarian order with its capital at Munich. The last would be Prussia, with its capital at Berlin.


    Illustration of the French partition plan


    France claimed it had already engaged in talks with perspective leaders in each of the zones who had, according to them, endorsed the idea fully. France did not get far in its message to convince Italy- we had already made up our minds to be opposed to the partition. Togliatti had somehow been won over to Bordiga’s position, presumably the day before. Or at least he chose not to take positions for the time being. I cannot be sure. But at any rate we did not endorse the French proposal much to the anger of our counterparts, though it seemed the Union of Britain was encouraged by our move and joined. The Combined Syndicates, though an observer, signaled its support for an alternative to France’s position.

    France admittedly could have simply gone through with the plan without us. For some reason they did not. They had possibly been suspicious of both the Union of Britain (The British had influence in Germany due to their creation of the R.E.D. saboteurs) and ourselves with our own discussions with groups in Germany and what potential issues they could cause if partition was carried out. The last thing it wanted was a restive Germany as it faced down the German Empire.

    Rather than changing its plan altogether France sought to win over support from the Syndintern through other means with a modified partition plan. I myself was exposed to this during a private meeting between myself and my counterpart Sartre who showed me an alternative proposal that the French had thought of.

    Rather than creating a German confederation that would presumably be at the control of France, the individual members would fall into the influence of other Syndintern governments. Rhineland and Prussia would be at the control of France, while the North German Federation would fall under the protection of the Union of Britain and Bavaria to Italy.

    I did not even need to consult Togliatti or Bordiga over the choice. I rejected it out straight and emphasized the need for a unified Germany, particularly in the light of a resurgent Russian Empire to the east. Sartre shrugged and tried the proposal to his British counterpart; I assumed that it did not go over too well on that end either considering the next day France had a new proposal on the table.

    France talked about a “German Union” now. We were excited- did France quickly abandon its plans for a divided Germany? Some what. We were shown later however that France, still concerned about the potentials of a strong Germany, insisted on allowing it to occupy the Rhineland and eventually incorporate it directly into the Commune of France while letting the rest of Germany administrate itself.


    Rhineland Proposal


    This was still concerning to us as it left France in a dominant position on the continent. The Union of Britain did not seem much concerned about this as we were though and appeared close to accepting the proposal, but for whatever reason it had chosen to back out at the last minute, giving us a collective sigh of relief. Rumor had it that Mosley had revealed the intentions of the Conference while touring with Pieck at Cologne, sending the people there into a riot that led the Union of Britain to withdraw its support in order to save face. France, not wanting to deal with the prospect of even more widespread demonstrations, withdrew from that plan.

    In time we made it clear- a unified Germany would be preferable above all else. France would still not accept this and ultimately proposed one last alternative: a simple north-south division of Germany.


    The Two Syndicates Proposal


    All in all I must admit this was an odd proposal to consider. It was rather unexpected and for the most part, a classic case of state building on the part of planners. We were concerned first and foremost about this set up- beyond the obvious case of whether the two governments could assert themselves effectively in the region- of the industrial disparities between the two regions. It would appear for the most part that the northern syndicate would end up being the dominant component of the former Germany, leaving the south largely agrarian. The Commune of France suggested a potential referendum in Austria to be held joining it to the South German Syndicalist Union in order to balance out the industrial difference between the two portions.

    We were not too warm to this proposal either. While it did incorporate in a form some pan-German aspirations with the inclusion of Austria, it was more or less France stepping on what Italy had done on its front by emphasizing that France had essentially helped it win the war in the south. This was not to be doubted, but France was using it regardless to wrestle us into accepting the proposal. We held strong and thanks to an intervention by Bordiga we were kept from being maneuvered into an awkward position diplomatically and kept France on the defensive about why it was so hesitant for a simple solution to Germany- keep the original shape while changing its essential economic base.

    At the end though, it wasn’t so much our amazing skills of persuasion as it was the French losses on the Eastern Front, notably at a disastrous battle at the outskirts of Minsk that saw pretty large casualty rates, nearly on level with what France experienced during its attempts to cross the Meuse river in the early years of the war. With Russia becoming a real threat and the necessity of another strong member of the Syndintern, France saw the importance of a genuine German Union to be created. It however could not budge on the question of reparations and ‘industrial adjustments’- but this was a necessary compromise to prevent a complete destruction of Germany as it was.

    So it was on December 8th the delegates of the Third International formally recognized the ascendance of the German Union into our ranks.



    The German Union

    ------------------------------------------------------

    The German Union’s foundation was quickly followed up by the first meeting of its Syndicalist Congress on December 18th to decide upon essential questions of the new structure and direction of the German Union. As Nenni described in his recollections on the Frankfurt Conference, the main platforms at this time in Germany were the FAUD, the Spartacists, and the SED, all espousing different positions of the international at the time- Anarcho-Syndicalism, Marxist remnants and orthodox syndicalists, and Totalism respectively.



    The meeting was held in Hamburg, on account of Berlin still being in the midst of reconstruction. The different parties had different stances on particular issues that would come to define Germany in its first decade of post-imperial rule. The delegates to the Congress were assembled from the various workers’ councils across Germany- having been formed in the preceding months and instructed to decide on who to send well before even the Frankfurt Congress.

    The first matter of discussion was over the position of Germany in the context of the Syndintern and the greater world. The FAUD pushed for a more pacifistic internationalist standpoint while the Spartacists affirmed their commitment to the aims of the Syndintern and the International Revolution. The SED on the other hand positioned itself for a more isolated Germany and even a withdrawal from the Syndintern’s military arm in order to better focus its resources on reconstruction.

    It cannot be said for sure whether or not France had interfered in some way to prevent the SED’s rather radical and anti-Syndintern position from achieving a dominant position in the Congress. There are ‘theories’ that the SED’s position in this respect may have been much more popular among the delegates than was reported, but the Spartacist position eventually won over.

    The next area of debate was the question of industry and planning. This involved a whole host of factors that ultimately posited the question of just how ‘centralized’ the eventual a planned economy would become. The FAUD naturally placed its confidence in the individual syndicates to make the appropriate decisions to take care of industrial policy and reconstruction. The Spartacists opted for a more direct use of planned economy concepts in order to ‘guide’ the various workers’ councils and create a standard, nation-wide plan to address the concerns and direction of the German Union. The SED, true to its Totalist viewpoint, desired a wholly state-run economy to address industrial concerns. Here, once again, the Spartacists found that their arguments were the most favored by the delegates.

    The question of the military was the next area of debate. Germany for the most part assumed control of a military formed from defectors and popular militias and it was not entirely sure what would be done with them. The FAUD opted for a more pacifist viewpoint and desired to have the manpower meant for am military focused more into the construction of a new order in Germany- chiefly in reconstruction. The Spartacists desired to keep the military at its current size if not expand it slightly on account of the Russian Empire to the east. The SED signaled a total commitment to the military was necessary in order to keep Germany a serious contender in the socialist world. The FAUD’s position seemed to resonate with the delegates more though, tired of war and the preceding decades of militarism in Germany.

    The last major area of contention was over the way the German Union should ‘regulate’ itself- chiefly in areas of dissent and how to deal with potential counter-revolutionaries. The FAUD said that such matters should be decided by the Syndicates themselves while the Spartacists opted to design the policy much like its idea of a nation-wide ‘plan’ for industry. The SED wanted a total involvement of the state in internal affairs in order to ‘protect’ the gains of the revolution. At the end the FAUD’s position won over, more over due to the menacing possibilities the latter two would potentially bring.

    Ultimately on December 28th, the Congress came to an end with an idea of where to proceed. The new German Union would more or less be dependent on a negotiation between the FAUD and Spartacist platforms in hammering out a proposal for the new German Union. The SED was frustrated with the results of the Congress, and claimed that France had interfered with the events of the Congress to try and push the FAUD over it with support to that organization. It cannot be said for sure whether or not the SED may have had a word of truth to this or was angry over it failure to secure a better result, though votes showed that for the most part the SED’s position was embraced by a strong minority of delegates, though not enough to be a contender in the post-Congress negotiations for a new government.

    And so 1944 opened to a year with a new, German Union entering into the Syndintern and joining ranks with the International to fight its titanic battle with the Russian Empire to the east. Such aid would be welcomed by the Synditnern in time, though only time would show whether it had really made a difference or not. Eyes still turned towards the Combined Syndicates of America over whether it would commit itself to the war in Europe, or focus on reconstruction having fought near continuous war for over 7 years.

    __________________________________________________ ______________

    [1] “Spartacist” of course recalling the legacy of Spartacus, the leader of a large slave rebellion in Ancient Rome. Spartacus had long excited the imagination of many socialists, including Karl Marx himself, who viewed him as one of the ancient ‘revolutionaries’.

    [2] Karl Kautsky died in October of 1938, having the party’s leadership pass on to Otto Wels. Kautsky still retained ‘loyalists’ who attempted to forge a separate path from the legacy of Ebert and the Spartacists of Liebknecht and Luxemburg.
    Last edited by MercZ; 06-11-2011 at 21:51.
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  5. #205
    I realize that DH doesn't allow it but is there any possibility of mutual peace. The leading members of Synditern may be skeptical of such a second "peace with honor" but with the exception of the world revolution, all other war aims have essentially been accomplished. The CSA and German Union, together likely a near majority of the industrial power of the International, are likely war weary. Weariness may be something of an issue in the Synditern core, but the two "second circle" powers have had years of war fought on their own land. I'm not saying it should be now, but would you ever consider a peace with Russia, or else a cease fire like RL Korea?

  6. #206
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    Quote Originally Posted by thekonkoe View Post
    I realize that DH doesn't allow it but is there any possibility of mutual peace. The leading members of Synditern may be skeptical of such a second "peace with honor" but with the exception of the world revolution, all other war aims have essentially been accomplished. The CSA and German Union, together likely a near majority of the industrial power of the International, are likely war weary. Weariness may be something of an issue in the Synditern core, but the two "second circle" powers have had years of war fought on their own land. I'm not saying it should be now, but would you ever consider a peace with Russia, or else a cease fire like RL Korea?
    It shouldn't be too hard to code an event along those lines if the need for it came up. Again though I want to see what the AI will make of the resources it has and whether it can overcome the manpower rut it has gotten itself into.

    This makes sense though. A point I've been bringing up in the past few chapters is the idea of weariness and a desire to simply return back to the normal affairs of the nation. Of course though it will depend on whether or not Russians also feel the same- there really hasn't been a significant war on Russia's end beyond beating up some of the minors on their borders, and the DoW on Mitteleuropa came as the Germans were on their last stand.

    However I got to get my self into the other end of the Mediterranean. The eastern part in particular is looking very vulnerable at this moment.
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  7. #207
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    No peace with Russia! The Tzar should be punished!
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  8. #208
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    What about the fresh german manpower? They should suffice to feed your meat grinders for another year of pushing into Russia, no?

  9. #209
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    Quote Originally Posted by MercZ View Post
    It shouldn't be too hard to code an event along those lines if the need for it came up. Again though I want to see what the AI will make of the resources it has and whether it can overcome the manpower rut it has gotten itself into.

    This makes sense though. A point I've been bringing up in the past few chapters is the idea of weariness and a desire to simply return back to the normal affairs of the nation. Of course though it will depend on whether or not Russians also feel the same- there really hasn't been a significant war on Russia's end beyond beating up some of the minors on their borders, and the DoW on Mitteleuropa came as the Germans were on their last stand.
    This really depends on Russia's goals. Think about it, though. North America and Europe to the Vistula are under Syndicalist control. (What's going on in East Asia?)

    Russia should want to avoid a prolonged conflict with an ideology that's got substantial support among its population, especially given the fate of Germany. Perhaps another meeting at Tilsit?

    Also, I suppose the Gemrmans should look for the union label...
    I am therefore officially rooting for a Franco-German strike on Russia, prompting the Soviets to strike back with their hitherto secret nukes. This will serve as a salutary lesson to all involved and leave everyone suitably chastened.-El Pip

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  10. #210
    I would think the European Syndicalists would send representatives to North America to remind the CSA of the contributions the Internationale made during the Second Civil War. Plus the Syndies could recruit the defeated foes into "Volunteer" regiments (light infantry) to restore their honor.

  11. #211
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    Surprisingly light terms for the German Union, territory wise. Strong ally is strong!
    Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. -Isa 41:10

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  12. #212
    I read through all of this in the past two days. Awesomeness^2.

    *subscribed*

  13. #213
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolai View Post
    Surprisingly light terms for the German Union, territory wise. Strong ally is strong!
    Actually considering how large Germany is in the Kaiserreich setup, this is quite a large reduction in their size

    They lost Alsace-Lorraine, Wallonia, Luxemburg, Nord-Schleswig, Posen, Danzig, West Prussia, upper Silesia, the Baltics, all of their colonies, and then some more...

    Additionally Poland got a huge chunk of Silesia (Oppeln + Gleiwitz) that they did not get at Versailles in OTL. And then there's East Prussia which went... to whom exactly?

    Considering that they have not been guilty of crimes against humanity like OTL's nazi Germany, it is quite a humiliation. This game's Germany would have millions of refugees now if it were real life. Losing east Prussia in particular must be super humiliating for them, it was a core region of Prussia/Germany ever since the 18th century, and spiritual home to the Hohenzollerns.

  14. #214
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    I agree; they should've retained East Prussia and the OTL Polish Corridor (including Danzig).

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    vae victis... a lesson the Germans taught other people often enough. Surely this will not have been the last Franco-German war

  16. #216
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    East Prussia is the French Kaliningrad (or Makhnoville).
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  17. #217
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    Sorry for the long delay guys. In the past few weeks I got swamped with work and university, and I got thrown off by my Birthday back on November 8th (a few days after the last update), which completely threw off my flow with this aar. But not to fear to those still following, I didn't lose a save game or give up on anything. Just took longer to get things together this time around.

    I also see I went past 30,000 views. Thanks to all the subscribers and others coming back to check this thread frequently, and to the new readers, like Taylor.

    Without further ado...

    The Middle-Eastern Campaign


    Quote Originally Posted by Radio Rome


    The forces of the Red Army continue to march through Europe as workers liberate themselves from the chains of the bourgeois and the monarchs. There is only one future, that of the Workers’ Republic.

    The reactionary Russian Empire will not be able to resist the Syndintern, and the people of Russia will rise up against the Tsarist oppressors like they did in the past.

    The march of socialism is inevitable. Soon the throne of the Tsars will be cast down.

    As the Syndintern faces the Russian Empire, the Ottoman Empire now fears the growing power of the revolution as the navies of the Italian People’s Republic prepare for an invasion of the weakened island of Cyprus. Soon the Middle-East itself will lay open to the revolution.

    January’s operations on the Russian Front bogged down into a stalemate as French forces attempted to reestablish supply lines before penetrating deeper into Russian territory. The winter only served to make matters worse for the Syndintern’s preparations to deliver a crippling blow to the Russian Empire. In its further consolidation of the continent, the Commune of France released a syndicalist Netherlands as the monarchist government of exile lost any hope of ever returning to the mainland.



    The Italians were focused on the Eastern Mediterranean and the Ottoman Empire, the last major presence in the crumbling German order. The Ottoman Empire had managed to prevent a Russian invasion through the Caucasus, though they lost the client state of Armenia to advancing Russian forces. The Empire was facing border problems with Hashemite Arabia despite the peace treaty signed between the two, and difficult battles in the Balkans which threatened the capital itself. It had also managed so far to prevent a crossing of the Egyptian military into the Sinai Peninsula, with the Suez Canal becoming a virtual trench between the two forces.

    The only significant obstacle to the Middle-Eastern operation was the naval presence of the Ottoman Empire along with remnants of the Imperial Germany navy. However the Turkish navy was not as developed as its Italian counterparts and the German ones were undersupplied. Both were already weakened with battles against the forces of the Syndintern, leaving much of the Eastern Mediterranean open to an invasion by the Italians. The French were occupied with the Russian Empire, the British with their campaign in Africa, leaving the Italians to take down the crumbling Ottoman Empire on its own.

    The first target was to secure the island of Cyprus in order to provide a staging ground for an invasion of the Levant and a base for air raids across the region. The operation was launched at the beginning of February, consisting mostly of naval bombardments on island fortifications to clear the way for ground forces. The defenses on the island itself were not significant and the existing garrison was not prepared to face the invasion from Italy. By February 12, the entire island was under the control of Italy.


    Italian controlled Cyprus


    Admittedly the invasion of the island was made much easier with the dire straits the Ottoman Empire already was in. The last thing it needed was the Italians preparing to strike it at its most vulnerable areas while it attempted to hold back invasions from nearly every corner of its dominion. The impending Italian invasion also increased the chance of a long time project of the Syndintern coming to fruition- revolts by the Kurdish and Arabic populations as the empire showed signs of weakness.

    Indeed the problem was not new to the Ottoman Empire. Its ongoing centralizing tendencies had irked the local populace, in particular the once powerful tribal leaders and other local notables, as more power began to shift to the imperial capital at Istanbul and the developing bureaucracy. The most recent major revolt against this drive took place in the Kurdish revolt that began on April 17th, 1938, spearheaded by a disorganized grouping of Republicans with syndicalist sympathies on one hand and a more tribal and religious rooted sentiment on the other. The revolt could not stand against the might of the imperial army’s intervention later though. A similar Arab revolt afterwards that served as a prelude to the Ottoman war with the Egyptians and Hashemites would face a similar fate.

    This time around though, the Syndicalists had made sure that the Republican sympathizers would have the upper hand in organizing support for their movements and outmaneuvering tribal and religious groups to the best of their abilities. The Kurdish leader Qazi Muhammad who had trained in Italy along with other revolutionaries, while the Arabs were trained in France, had been deployed at the beginning of the war to establish the groundwork for a force that would aid the Syndintern once they reached the realms of the Ottoman Empire.

    The French left the Middle-Eastern Theater in the Italians’ hands as they committed their resources to facing the Russian Empire. The major conflicts would take place in the Baltics during the first engagements between the two large militaries, with the French opting for a drive against the imperial capital at Petrograd. The French would begin their operation at the beginning of March, hoping to make promising gains by the time the summer rolled around.


    A French breakthrough at the beginning of March, 1944


    The Italian air force began a bombing campaign along the Mediterranean coast of the Levant, clearing way for an eventual beachhead for the deployment of Italian troops. The Levant was chosen due to the relatively light defenses in the region, with much of the Ottoman Empire tied up in other areas. The region would also be located in proximity to both the Kurdish and Arabic groups preparing to rise up once the Italians established a presence in the region.

    On the early hours of March 10th, 1944, an Italian landing took place near Beirut to establish a beachhead for further operations in the Middle-East. Beirut’s defense garrisons were swept aside by the better equipped and trained Italian forces, which made way for even more Italian forces to be deployed into the area.


    Italian beachhead, March 1944


    The invasion prompted a desperate response from the Ottoman authorities as it seemed evident they would not have the capabilities to withstand the amount of fronts it was attempting to keep under control. From its regional garrison at Damascus the Ottoman Empire launched a counterattack on the Italian forces spreading out along the coast. The counterattack was ineffective, resulting in an Italian drive towards Damascus itself on March 25th. The garrison by this point was severely weakened and was even outnumbered by the Italian forces. The city would fall within days of the attack, creating a real threat for the Ottoman Empire in the region.



    The Italian success in Damascus also indicated the possibility of a successful revolt within the Ottoman Empire backed by the Syndintern. Sending out agents to make contact with their agents, the word was spread through the region that the Syndintern would back those who choose to rise up against the Ottoman Empire. The offer was taken up by the Kurds and Arabs in the ancient lands of Mesopotamia immediately, who rose up in arms and turned much of the region into chaos, with the groups trying to fend off local Ottoman garrisons and their collaborators.

    On April 10th the cities of Baghdad, Mosul, Arbil, and Sulaymaniyah were gripped with insurrection and broke off from Ottoman Authorities, with Arab and Kurdish groups declaring their own new state. Even further south in the marshlands Arabs rose up against Ottoman garrisons and sent the region into a state of rebellion.

    The revolt was aided by the Ottoman Empire’s attempts to prevent attacks from its most vulnerable borders. The arrival of the Italian invasion and their destabilization of the region went unopposed as a result.


    Revolts in Mesopotamia


    The Italian forces also turned their attention to the Sinai Peninsula, hoping to secure it and prevent it from falling into the hands of the Egyptians as the Ottoman defenses on the Suez Canal began to weaken from soldiers being moved to fight against the Italian invasion. The first major confrontation would take place in El Arish on May 9th against a hastily constructed defense to prevent the Italians from encircling the Ottoman forces holding the Egyptians back across the Suez Canal. The battle, like the preceding one at Damascus, showed the Italian forces being able to handedly sweep by the defenders. This would leave the Sinai Peninsula to fall to the Italians in the coming months, and successfully preventing an opportunity for the Egyptians to enter into the peninsula.

    http://oi42.tinypic.com/728182.jpg[/img]


    The rebels had to only fear already weakened and demoralized soldiers of the Empire trying to fight them and their air support- everything else was in their advantage. Ideologically the groups were probably closer to socialism more found in the Union of Britain built along Republican principles- it did not show many similarities with the Anarchist and Syndicalist opinion dominating in France, or the resurgence of Marxist thought in Italy. However the Syndintern would be grateful for any opportunity to end the war in the Middle-East quickly in order to focus on the war with Russia.

    Attempts to make the groundwork for a unified Middle-Eastern state were not successful as the Syndintern hoped [1]. The Kurds and Arabs, while pledging ‘mutual’ assistance to one another, were suspicious of a single government between the two, with the Kurds in particular worrying that they would be outnumbered by the Arabs and relegated to a ‘minority’ status rather than enjoying a share in governance. With the revolutionaries only tentatively agreeing to a supranational entity, they went their separate ways in their regions.

    With that opportunity in mind, it was the Kurds who took the first step of declaring their independence from the Ottoman Empire and formally aligning themselves to the Syndintern. Their success would rely on the eventual meeting of Italian and rebel battle lines to allow for the flow of supplies to the surrounded rebels. The second Kurdish state was not as large as the first- with the revolt in 1938 encompassing the territories in both Mesopotamia and Anatolia. This time around the revolt only took off in Mesopotamia, though the revolt itself was much better organized and more firmly in line with the republican camp. The tribal elements kept a low key, unable to find someone to rally around on account of Sheikh Barzanji’s continued exile in Aden.



    By late may much of the Levant was already under the control of the Synintern, and progress was being made in linking up the battle lines with Kurdistan, which had been accepted into the Syndintern before. Arab revolutionaries managed to make a stand in Baghdad and were calling on their fellow sympathizers across the region to rise up and join in the struggle for independence. Advances on Baghdad were prevented due to the inability of the Ottoman forces to pass through the Kurdish mountains, with the other possible route now blocked by the Italians.

    Across the ocean the war in South America- which had been looking unfavorable for the Syndicalists until then- began to show some gains for Brazil after losing its southeastern provinces to La Plata. La Plata had before the events of the summer of 1944 been relying on German support, due to being an associate, though not a full member, of Mitteleuropa. With Germany removed as a serious international power, La Plata now had to deal with its difficult adjustment to fight without Mitteleuropan aid, even as Brazil and Bolivia continued to receive Syndintern aid. With the elimination of the Entente from the Americans, arising from the collapse of the monarchy in Canada and the capitulation of the Caribbean Federation, La Plata was alone in its fight against Brazil.


    The War in South America, June 1944


    By the summer of 1944, the Syndintern had been making progress into the Baltics, though was constantly frustrated by the inability to deal a devastating defeat to the Russian Empire, which had avoided any major encirclements until that point. The Syndintern turned its attention to Ukraine, which was rapidly collapsing in face of the Russian advance and risking extending the front in the east even longer.

    It was an odd conundrum for Makhno especially, being from Ukraine himself. His return to Ukraine had always been in the back of his mind as the Syndintern moved eastward, to the land which he had exiled himself from following the failure of his Black Army in Ukraine. In a way Makhno had his eye on finally completing his revolution in Ukraine, but was also aware of the danger of extending the front longer than they could handle.

    The end of Ukraine was inevitable though. Ukraine could not hold back the Russian advance, even with the Syndintern forces from the west ordered to merely hold defensive lines and not advance into Ukraine. Kiev had already fallen to the Russians earlier, prompting the government to relocate to Odessa. As the Russians neared the city, the King and the Hetman [2] fled into exile, abandoning Ukraine to the Russians. On July 17th the Russian Empire formally annexed the whole of Ukraine.



    Whether the Syndintern liked it or not, they would now have to deal with extended battle lines. The fall of Ukraine however removed the last trace of Mitteleuropa on the continent, now ensuring that the Syndintern’s new order would be there to stay. The Russian Empire now posed the most significant threat to them, and the whole of the Syndintern’s resources was now focused on withstanding the Russian military.

    The new governments set up in the remains of old Europe were also committed to the war, but would have to deal in asserting their governments over the divided populace, some of whom would have loyalties with the old regimes. The German Union in particular under the joint Spartacist-FAUD government had to deal with the remnants of the German nobility that had not fled out of the country, as well as suspicion over military officers and other functionaries who showed signs of dissent against the new government.

    Even in the old realms of Belgium and the Netherlands, there was a delicate balance the Syndintern would have to play to ensure the populace perceived themselves as members, rather than resources, of the Syndintern, much less puppets. The strains of war time helped to lessen the impact of these decisions, but it was looming on everyone’s minds of what would they do in the aftermath of the war, or in the worst case scenario, if the Russian Empire began to threaten Syndintern gains in Europe.

    The Italians continued their campaign in the Middle-East with a greater consolidation of their beachhead. Armored and mechanized units were being brought in to better traverse the plains of the region in order to quickly seize control of Mesopotamia and strike upwards into the heart of the Ottoman Empire.

    The gains of Italy in the region as well as the Ottoman Empire’s retreat out of the Balkans prompted the Arab regions to finally join ranks with the ongoing revolution in Baghdad and instigate another large uprising against Ottoman power. The movement was a large one, some sympathizing with the Republican stand point of the revolutionaries in Baghdad, but others choosing sides with the Hashemites and Egyptians. But for the time being, opposition to the Ottoman Empire was forged and on July 21st the region was caught up in the fervor of revolution.




    The uprisings gripped the remaining Arab cities that had not risen in revolt by that point. Within areas controlled by Italy the framework was being established for a future socialist government in the region working with revolutionaries in Damascus, as well as holding meetings between those in Damascus and Baghdad to agree upon a unified movement. All the while the Ottoman Empire could not muster the strength to oppose the intrigue from the Italians as the empire began to crumble before their eyes.

    The war was not over yet though, as the Imperial Army would undoubtedly attempt a last stand from within Anatolia to prevent the further progress of the Italian military to the capital. The Italians had ruled out a landing closer to the Imperial capital due to the strong naval emplacements in the region. The example of Gallipoli from the Great War presented a grim possibility of what could happen in such an operation. The Italians did not decide against Gallipoli from advice by the British, but rather supposed that with their progress as it was, the way would be open for an armored advance through Anatolia that would let it quickly fall.

    By the beginning of August, 1944, the situation in the Middle-East was favorable to Italy. The Kurdish state had so far withstood the advances of the Ottoman military, and was now aiding their fellow Arab republicans against more conservative elements of the Arab resistance. Italy for its part was now focusing on capturing the ports within the Hatay region and opening its way to advancing into the core of the Empire.


    The Middle-East by the beginning of August 1944


    __________________________________________________ __________________

    [1] Original Syndintern proposals suggested a Middle-Eastern syndicate encompassing Turks, Arabs, Kurds, and other groups in the Middle-East under one banner. An agreement from representatives of the communities could not be secured during the last major meeting of the International in Chicago in 1939 before the war.

    [2] The arrangement in Ukraine was similar to other states in Eastern Europe formed by the Germans in the aftermath of World War I. Ukraine had a member of the German nobility, Erzherzog Wilhelm von Österreich-Teschen und Toskana, became king as Vasily I Vyshyvaniy, ruling with the aid of a Hetman, Pavlo Skoropadsky. Ukraine had originally had a parliamentary assembly, the Rada, but was dissolved on August 15th following the rising popularity of the syndicalist aligned Nikita Khrushchev, restoring more power to the Hetman.
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  18. #218
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    You will allow those 'black provinces' to secede themselves or you will 'speed up' the process?

    Better secure that those Iraqis don't put a 'sheik' or Imam in power. Maybe now they look very cool and all that with their black and red flags but at the end if you want a revolution well done you must make it yourself. xD
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  19. #219
    Did the Kurdish rebels just declare independence by themselves, or was it by event?

  20. #220
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    Baron: Yes, don't worry, they'll be put back on track

    Taylor: The Arab uprising events are coded, the Kurdish one is only there for an earlier one. What I did was make some events to stimulate providing support (through supplies, money, etc. from my resources pool) to them during the Congresses that would lead up to the one you saw now.
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