Lord of Slower-than-real-time
- Dec 13, 2005
Austria-Hungary wants the war, as shown the ultimatum to Serbia was deliberately crafted to provoke a war, short of a major change in government or losing the German blank cheque they are going to push for it.Seems that way old chap. The tragedy is as discussed above, there doesn't seem to be a way out of this mess, even for just one of the powers.
EDIT: Ok, I'm not quite ready to let this go yet because the alternative is fightinf world war one. Is there no recourse of delaying this at least a little bit? Have an internarional summit or something? This would probably be possible if the US president wasn't such an isolationist...
Saying that, I suppose there wouldn't be that much to discuss, but it might work just as a chance for everyone in europe to meet up and try to convince countries to back their side before the shooting starts? Germany especially kind of needs some friends here.
Germany, for reasons discussed, thinks if there is to be a war earlier is better. The German general staff are over-confident in their plans, under-estimate how fast the Russians can mobilise and Kaiser Wilhelm is a catastrophic idiot. Not much chance of them cancelling the blank cheque, though undoubtedly they should.
Russia is probably the weak link, if they just told Serbia "Sorry, you aren't worth a war" then maybe the whole thing fizzles out into 'just' the Austro-Hungarian conquest of Serbia. You could try for a conference to achieve this in a less violent way, but I severely doubt the Tsar would politically survive not backing Serbia. This is all very similar to the Bosnian Crisis of 1908 where Russia did back down and let A-H annex Bosnia, one of the consequences was Russia hastening her railway building, modernisation and mobilisation plans - they were not going to be forced to back down again. Now arguably the Tsar backing down, getting deposed and then being replaced with a more competent Romanov (i.e. almost any of them) would be mostly excellent for everyone - A-H collapses due to the strain of running so many places that hate Vienna, a Germany without allies is forced to avoid incidents or it will face a war it can't win, Butterfly away the Soviet Union, etc. But it is a tad unlikely and could all go wrong in many horrible ways.
Everyone else, well once you have Germany, A-H and Russia in war then France has to join (to avoid seeing Russia knocked out and because of treaty), the Ottomans are itching to join and will find an excuse and then the British will feel obligated to do so.