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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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Jan 14, 2008
"This world of ours has seen many changes; so many that our Kingdom is seen as an anomally. The Papacy's power no longer extends beyond the confines of the Vatican. Russia has fallen to the dangerous athiest cult of Bolshevism. Extremists take power in many great European powers. Yet we have faith that we will survive. The Lord has seen fit to protect us through the centuries, as we see fit to protect his One True Faith. So too will He protect us in the years to come, for we are the children of God, the children of Jerusalem... simply put, the Kingdom will endure because God wills it." - from 'A Treatise on the New Europe', by Richard Corlon, Archbishop of Jerusalem (c.1935)

Deus Vult! ~The Kingdom of Jerusalem~

Excerpts from a college student's notes, taken during a History of the Near East course in 1953:

1095 - Pope Urban II declares the First Crusade at the Council of Clermont. All who go on the fighting pilgrimage are promised to have their sins remitted. Thousands leave their homes to take the cross to Jerusalem.

1096 - Official military forces depart France, Germany and Italy for the Holy Land to reclaim it for Christendom. Of these nearly 60,000 men, less than 20,000 will survive to see Jerusalem.

July 7, 1099 - First Crusade forces arrive at the walls of Jerusalem. Some Crusaders are said to have wept at seeing the city they'd fought three years to reach. Christian forces lay siege to the city.

June 15, 1099 - Crusaders breach the defenses of the city, with Flemish brothers Ludolf and Engelbert of Tournai being the first to set foot in the Holy City. Most of the city's inhabitants are slaughtered in the days to come.

Godfrey I, first King of Jerusalem.

1144 - Amir Zengi of Mosul conquers Edessa, and Jerusalem forms alliance with Damascus, as both feel similarly threatened.

1148 - Crusading kings Louis VII of France and Conrad III of Germany suggest an attack on the 'easy target' of Damascus at Acre. Young King Baldwin III argues against this move, and with the help of like-minded nobles convinces the kings to help attack Zengi and his heir Nur ad-Din instead. The Second Crusade's forces lay siege to Aleppo, as suggested by Queen Melisende (Baldwin III's mother), and capture it due to fractions in Zengi's forces.

1149 - Crusader armies recapture Edessa after a victory over Zengi's worn forces, and eventually a peace is negotiated. The Kingdom is safe for now.

1154 - Nur ad-Din helps plot coup that overthrows Amir of Damascus, riding popular sentiment for Jihad against the Franks in a mostly bloodless siezing of power; the Muslim world begins to unite under him despite the reconquest of Edessa and the loss of Aleppo to Jerusalem. Faced with this diminished but remaining threat, the Kingdom of Jerusalem turns to its closest (geographically) ally: Byzantium.

1156 - Byzantium forms an alliance with the Kingdom of Jerusalem to attempt to contain Nur ad-Din.

1174 - Nur ad-Din dies, and Saladin, who had become Caliph of Egypt by overthrowing its Shiite leader, becomes heir to a united Muslim empire.

1180 - Pro-western Byzantine emperor dies, but his heir continues the alliance with Jerusalem.

1180-1184 - Saladin's forces and the Kingdom's forces fight a series of battles, in which Saladin lays siege to outposts of crusader state, and captures a few before stalemate sets in. Reinforcements from Byzantium arrive in time to bolster Jerusalem's thinly defended borders, while in Europe another Crusade is eventually launched by Philip IV of France and Richard I of England.

1186 - Stalemate continues, Guy and Sybilla (sister of deceased King Baldwin IV) overthrown and replaced by Sybilla's half-sister Isabella and her husband Humphrey, later King Humphrey I.

1191 - War drags on as Saladin takes pieces of the southern Kingdom, but Byzantine/Jerusalem forces hold on. Richard the Lionhearted arrives with the Third Crusade and wins a series of battles, driving Saladin back to Damascus after several humiliating defeats. There, Saladin is assassinated by servants of the Old Man of the Mountain, a Shiite who despised Saladin for his overthrow of the Shiite Caliph of Egypt. Once-united Muslim factions splinter without Saladin's leadership, and begin fighting each other. Kingdom of Jerusalem is safe once more.

1246 - Venetians, due to collapsing relations w/Jerusalem and Byzantium, plot to send another Crusade against Constantinople by telling bankrupt French knights that they will be greatly rewarded by a deposed nobleman who wants his throne back. This is also to stop them from attacking Egypt, with whom they do good business. A weakened Byzantium has little money to reward these knights with, and after the regent is restored, Constantinople is sacked to pay off debts, etc. Jerusalem is horrified, but can do nothing to stop the disaster, as their naval forces are minimal, and they must watch their borders as Mongols and Mamluks, amongst others, gain power and influence around them. On the request of King Baldwin VI, the Pope excommunicates the Venetian Doge and several Fourth Crusade leaders, leading to stronger ties between Rome and Jerusalem for a short time.

1200-1268 - Reforms are made in order to ensure greater cohesion and survival of the Kingdom, including stricter laws on the line of succession. Peace treaties are signed with the various Muslim factions, inciting the ire of the Pope, but encouraged by war-weary Byzantium. Trade is established with Damascus once more, as well as Venice, and the Kingdom's royal line of succession continues unhindered.

1260 - Mongols have become greater player on the scene, and are encouraged by KoJ to attack Egypt's Mamluks, the greatest threat to Jerusalem's survival. Mongols lose at the battle of Ain Jault, but Jerusalem's army defeats the Mamluks in a surprise attack the next day. Two great threats to the Kingdom's well-being are destroyed in one fell swoop, manipulated by King Frederick I.

1100-1300 - Steady stream of European and other Christian settlers forces out Muslims who returned to Kingdom of Jerusalem, eventually making up 50% of the population by 1300. Reforms of the 13th and 14th centuries allow for greater tolerance of most faiths, including Orthodoxy, Judaism, and very limited, 'reformed' Islam. Trade is resumed with Egypt after fall of Mamluks, and Jerusalem's economy benefits greatly.

1453 - (previously Sultanate of Rum) Ottomans sieze control of Constantinople, rename it Istanbul. They manage to coexist with the Kingdom of Jerusalem for a long while, mostly due to the mutual benefits of trade, etc.

1300-1750 - KoJ coexists with fellow nations in the region, fighting sporadic wars against minor factions, including a series of European incursions into Egypt which further strain relations with the ever-changing West. Jerusalem becomes more 'orientalized' and tolerant, but remains staunchly Catholic even as Protestantism rises in Europe. Smaller 'Crusader States' increasingly lose independent influence by necessity of stronger central government in Jerusalem. They are formally incorporated into the Kingdom of Jerusalem with the Tripoli Pact of 1455.

1790-1795 - First Frankish-Ottoman War; Kingdom of Jerusalem uses faster-moving but outnumbered troops to sieze control of Syria, and trade this land to regain Cyprus, which had been invaded by the Ottomans the year before. Peace treaty is signed in Vienna, with portions of Egypt and Turkey going to Jerusalem.

1815-1820 - Second Frankish-Ottoman War; Ambitious new Sultan declares Treaty of Vienna dissolved, leads invasion of Christian-held Turkey and pushes beleagured forces of Jerusalem back to old borders. A series of battles ensues that sees Jerusalem victorous between 1817-1819, but Ottomans turn the tide and eventually force Jerusalem to surrender. Ottomans regain lost land, take Christian-held Syria and Jordan.

1829-1832 - Greeks declare independence from Ottomans, are supported financially and materially by Kingdom of Jerusalem, though the Kingdom remains officially neutral.

1877-78 - Russo-Turkish War; Jerusalem declares support for brother Christians in Serbia, Montenegro, Romania and Bulgaria, invades Ottoman Turkey to put pressure on Turks. Borders return to status quo after Ottomans surrender, inciting some anger in the Kingdom.

Jerusalem, the Kingdom's capital, in 1898.

1800s-1900s - Kingdom of Jerusalem battles nationalist/socialist movements with the power of faith, stronger in the Kingdom than most places in Europe. They also allow for creation of pseudo-parliament and local elections of mayors, but King remains absolute power. Experiences of adversity, common opposition to Ottomans, and national identity created by centuries of survival, plus majority Christian (90% by this point, 69% Catholic) population ensures survival.

1860-1905 - King Baldwin XIX reigns and oversees rapid modernization of the Kingdom in order to ensure survival against industrialized nations of Europe, etc. Military also modernized, but mainly used in a defensive role, save for the Russo-Turkish War. Jerusalem officially protests the loss of Papal power in Italy due to Italian nationalism, but does not intervene. Italy, Russia become major trading partners, as does France.

King Baldwin XIX (1840-1905), who oversaw the modernization of the Kingdom of Jerusalem.

1914-1918 - Great War. Kingdom of Jerusalem remains neutral as industrialization continues, fearing being overwhelmed by one side or the other. Ottoman Empire collapses after the War, leading to British/French dominion over most of former Ottoman territory.

1920s - Nationalism sparks revolts in Syria, Jordan, and Egypt, which are put down for the time being. This will lead to establishment of all three as independent states later. Kingdom of Jerusalem prospers through trade again, working with France and United Kingdom while using faith to counteract regional socialist movements, inspired by Russian Revolution.

1936 - By special order of the League of Nations, Syria, Jordan and Egypt become independent states. Seeing more industrialized KoJ and Western Allies as a threat, they quickly ally, along with Iraq. Turkey moves to recognize and guarantee the independence of these new states.


And here is the promised very alternate history AAR, featuring a surviving Kingdom of Jerusalem in the 20th century. Hope the quick history lesson above is suitable for now, more details might come later. The mod itself is just about ready to go into service, so actual screens should come shortly.

There will be one house rule put in place right now: no attacking the newly liberated countries (Egypt, Syria, Jordan) for at least a year or two in game. This will give them a chance to build up armies and make things a bit more interesting. At least that's the theory.
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Field Marshal
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Nov 13, 2007
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Interesting, subscribe me.


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Oct 3, 2007
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Conservative Socialist
Jul 23, 2007
Subscribed. :p
Also, I would like to see the overall status of the Kingdom of Jerusalem. :)


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could prove interesting.


Katalaanse Burger en Terroriste
Feb 12, 2005
The Crusade Spirit still resists, I see. Perhaps the Kingdom of Heavens will end with the godless communist rabble? ;)


(Interim Avatar)
Oct 9, 2006
this concept is too awesome for words, a semi-theocratic Catholic state in the holy land (canonized would love it)... count me in... subscribed.

can we have a map of the area? thanks.


Jan 14, 2008
In the year of our Lord 1936, the middle east was rapidly changing. Three new states appeared on the map, all of them Arab and predominantly Muslim. All of them ruled by nationalist, extremist governments and to varying degrees hostile to the West. Together with another new state - Iraq - these three states formed an alliance under the terms of the Cairo Pact. They would fight as one should a member state be threatened, and all would make war should one elect to do so. This was proclaimed to be out of self-defense, but it was clearly in part to be out of opposition to the Christian Kingdom of Jerusalem which now stood surrounded by Pact members.

Political map, 1/1936; the new states of Syria, Jordan, Iraq and Egypt signed an alliance with each other, isolating the Kingdom of Jerusalem.

Meanwhile, the Kingdom of Jerusalem did not remain idle. Just over a century before, the Kingdom had lost lands to the Ottoman Empire in the Second Frankish-Ottoman War. Amongst these lands were the provinces of Aleppo and Hims (now held by Syria) and the lands of the former 'Armenian Kingdom' that had been an early Crusader state, and later a province of the Kingdom (now held by Turkey).

The Kingdom of Jerusalem's declared national territory; pieces of it belonged to Syria and Turkey in 1936.

More than a few members of the Kingdom's leaders wanted badly to rectify those losses, but to risk open war with the Cairo Pact would force Jerusalem into a two-front war, which it could not fight at the moment. The threat of Turkish intervention, and Turkish military numbers outweighing Jerusalem's own were also factors in the continuing neutrality. In terms of troop quality, the Kingdom was certain it maintained the best ground forces in the region.

Centuries after their creation, the two knightly orders remained in existance at this time. The Hospitalier Order had been adapted to serve more as a national police force, and in times of need a reserve military force, and ran all domestic intelligence efforts. On the other hand, the Templar Knights served as both foreign and military intelligence, as well as the main permanent ground forces in peace time. The Templar Order even ran a military academy, though the Hospitaliers did as well. There remained a rivalry between the two Orders, but both answered to the King himself, and followed his will. Meanwhile, the Kingdom had also created a national army of more common folk; those who had been foot soldiers in the Crusades in terms of class would now be in the Royal Army.

In 1936, the Kingdom of Jerusalem had cut back on its military forces under the fairly progressive King Richard VI's direction. As such, the Kingdom's army numbered only 50,000. Of these, 30,000 were modernly equipped, professional soldiers trained by the Templar Order. The remaining 20,000 were seen more as active reserves, making up the Royal Army, equipped with Great War materials. While the Royal Jerusalem Air Force had been formed in 1930, they still had nothing more than a few outdated training aircraft. The Royal Navy had no major warships to call their own. Yet save for Turkey, this made Jerusalem the second most powerful military force in the middle east. Among independent nations at least.

The Army of Jerusalem; the Kingdom's full time army, made up of soldiers trained by the Templar Order.

The Army of Tripoli; made up of 20,000 Royal Infantrymen with outdated weapons and gear.

With difficulties arising in coordinating the supply route to the Kingdom's island outpost of Cyprus, the King declared something had to be done to remedy the situation. The Kingdom of Jerusalem's first production of the year became two series of transports to assist in the supply effort.

Finally in January, the Kingdom's first research of the year began. With somewhat limited manpower, Jerusalem was always looking for ways to expand the population. More sons meant more soldiers for the Kingdom. This in mind, the government assigned the development of agrichemistry to the University of Jerusalem.


@darthbalmung - This is just a little mod I made with HoI2: DD vanilla, which took a lot of time to make. Overall, I'm happy with it, though. Glad to have you reading.

@Kurt_Steiner - Take on the Godless Communists?! Perhaps if the Kingdom's feeling quite inspired to carry on the Lord's work.. you never know. Liberating Jerusalem's Christian brothers from the Bolshevist youke may be in the cards.. maybe not.

@scorpi - No, WW I did happen, and ended the same way it did in our timeline. So Russia is still the USSR.

Thanks everyone who's reading so far! Now, I want to get some opinions: should I write this AAR as A) Character-based narrative, B) History book, C)Gameplay or D)A bit of everything? I can write narrative and gameplay, and could write historybook, if I had some examples of good ones. Otherwise, I'd just drift into A or C anyway.

For narrative, some characters you might see would be King Richard VI, the Archbishop of Jerusalem, various military leaders, perhaps a Templar soldier, etc.
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Conservative Socialist
Jul 23, 2007
Nice update. :)
I think Gameplay + a little bit of Character-based narrative would be quite nice. :D


Katalaanse Burger en Terroriste
Feb 12, 2005
Mmmh... it seems we have the Arab-Israel wars with some years in advance...