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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

von_Rundstedt

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Note that "not excessively many" for Catalunya is probably "more than the Khanate could have built in two decades".
 

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Final Overview

So, here is the map after the peace treaty ending the African War, which in spite of the name was fought mainly in Europe:



Observe the Khanate finally reaching not only the Urals, last seen around 1550 before the century-long retreat from the Russian wars, but the very Atlantic, in the shape of Arkhangelsk. Not an ice-free port, alas, but very satisfying. And, deeply symbolic if not very militarily or economically important, regaining the City of Men's Desire! There will be held a Triumph, the first since well before Alexandros renounced the title of Autokrator. It remains to be seen whether Konstantin will emulate Cincinnatus, and lay down the title of Diktator with victory; or will instead choose to follow the example of Augustus, and take the purple. After all, when Alexandros, leading the Long March through Georgia and the steppes, refused to be addressed as other than 'Strategos', he said that none should again bear the title 'Autokrator' until the Eagles returned to Constantinople. And the Eagle, indeed, flies within the Antonine Walls, and the Hagia Sophia is again an Orthodox shrine - if, admittedly, of a rite shot through with Buddhist thought, and foreign even to the few Orthodox who remain after six centuries of Catholic rule. So, should Konstantin wish it, there may again be an Emperor in Rome - although not in Constantinople; the seat of government, obviously, will have to remain in New Byzantium. But, at any rate, there will be a Triumph; and impassive nomad tribesmen on scrubby little ponies will ride through the streets of the City, the plumes of Legionary helmets nodding under their lanceheads while golden Eagles festooned with horsetail banners scream triumph from overhead.

And what of the other barbarian tribes? Germany, obviously, bestrides Europe like a colossus, outright annexing the industrial heartland of Russia and stretching east to meet its ally the Khanate. Croatia is recreated as a vassal state, chiefly so the German people won't have to spend blood and treasure garrisoning the Balkans; no doubt the government at Split knows when to jump, though. Russia, in view of its last-minute change of allegiance, has some of its territory returned but is essentially a rump state, existing for similar reasons as Croatia: To avoid having to garrison a mountainous and unproductive area. It is, however, more genuinely independent, since its government survived more or less intact. It also retains some land that in 1936 was within Croatia's borders, a deliberate policy to create hostility between the two minor states. Scandinavia is split into three German vassals, and I took the opportunity to prettify the borders a bit.

If Germany is the big winner in territory, Ethiopia is the big loser. Its Oceanian empire is handed over to California, and the Middle East is split off and partitioned into vassal states of the victors, mainly of Catalunya. I envision some sort of "percentages-of-influence" agreement, with the southern state being 90% Catalunya, 10% Germany, the middle one 75% Catalunya, 25% Germany, and the one in Anatolia 50/30/20 to Catalunya, Germany, and the Khanate - the last in view of the ethnic connection. (In this timeline, Anatolia is still largely Greek in ethnicity, although converted to Islam.) How long these neat percentages can be maintained in the face of foreign-policy shifts, local demands for autonomy, economic development, and the geographic reality that Germany and Ethiopia are just plain closer than Catalunya and the Khanate - that's another question.

The new borders here are as arbitrary as those in OTL, and will likely cause as much trouble down the line. One of these states will no doubt be called Persia, probably the middle one; it is, of course, a shambling, blasphemous mockery of the majesty of the Peacock Throne, raised to an unholy semblance of real statehood by the arbitrary fiat of the Great Powers. If this is not necromancy, words on paper bringing back to unlife what was safely dead, then I do not know what is. A fitting fate for barbarians who invade the sacred soil of Rome!

The African powers are shorn of much overseas territory; they are required to disarm; they are not permitted to develop nuclear weaponry or missiles (and good luck to the inspectorate required to enforce this edict throughout Africa!); and Catalunyan naval bases surround their shores. But they are not utterly crushed, as was Germany in our timeline; only a small part of their territory was invaded, their cities were not bombed to rubble, and their governments and institutions continue intact. The decisive test of strength that was the African War has, no doubt, convinced them to curtail their imperial ambitions, at least for the remainder of the century; but they remain powerful nations who will, no doubt, immediately begin to jockey for influence in the new minor states and in the victorious alliance.

Punjab, in spite of being bled near to the bone by the demands of the Himalayan war (its manpower is down in the low hundreds in the final save), has come out of the war much enlarged in territory if not wealth. To remain a significant player, they will have to educate and organise the vast masses of India, still Hindu eand therefore pagans in Moslem eyes even after centuries of Ethiopian rule, without giving them ambitions of independence. This, it seems to me, will be a very difficult task - especially with the Khanate, thwarted in its ambition to outright conquer India, stirring the pot. The Punjabi hillmen are attempting to rule a subcontinent twice the size and five times the population of their core Central-Asian territory, in addition to holding down recently-conquered and restive Iran - a mountain territory whose guerrillas have resisted foreign rulers since Alexander. (The pre-Christian one, that is, not Alexandros of the Long March!) Although it looks impressive on the map, I feel this Punjab is an artifical construct, which may well split into its constituent parts when it is no longer upheld by African bayonets.

The Khanate, of course, does face a somewhat similar problem in China. However, the Han are not given to disputing the Mandate of Heaven as demonstrated by success in overthrowing a previous dynasty; and moreover they are not so distanced from their overlords by religion. For Moslem to rule Hindu is likely disaster for both parties; but the Komnenoi flavour of Christianity has absorbed much Buddhism and other Eastern thought over the centuries, and many at the highest levels in New Byzantium can quote the Analects with the best. Further, the Komnenoi have ruled a polyglot empire of hundreds of tribes and peoples for many centuries, and have evolved institutions for the task; the Punjabi have, in the same period, been an ethnically and religiously homogenous state whose main difficulty has been in maintaining its territorial integrity, not in uniting disparate peoples.

All four of the victorious Powers will rapidly acquire nuclear weapons, the Khanate probably last among them; we will presumably collaborate to keep the beaten states and our new vassals from getting them, although enforcing such an edict will, as noted, be extremely difficult. However, in other interests we are somewhat disparate, as we've already seen in the dispute over the fate of India, which the Khanate wished to annex. (Lesser allies propose, Great Powers dispose!) The era of armies of millions of conscripts is, however, pretty much over; so we will have to turn to other means of competition. Here I feel that Communist Germany is at a disadvantage. Building an industrial infrastructure for coal and steel is one thing; the economy of silicon and service, something else again. The laissez-faire tradition of the Khanate, coupled with the industriousness of its millions of Chinese subjects and the enormous mineral riches of Siberia, will likely propel it to the fore economically. Catalunya, with the immense wealth of one and a half American continents (plus cheap Middle Eastern oil), is also likely to do well. By 1980 I would not be surprised to see Germany, while stull militarily powerful, as an economic backwater with a creaking gerontocratic power structure, much as happened to the USSR in our timeline. I would also expect a free India and perhaps Iran, allied either to the Khanate or to a resurgent Ethiopia. A realignment of the Khanate, as the most irredentist of the victorious powers, with the beaten Africans is also possible; we have a ready-made ideological conflict in that the Khanate is the most economically free of the world's states, while Germany is explicitly Communist. In the heat of the War this could be ignored, but as things cool down militarily and freeze under the shadow of the mushroom cloud, the difference will again come to the forefront. The American powers, having settled the question of Eurasian hegemony to their satisfaction, will perhaps retreat again into relative isolation; at any rate there is no particular reason for them to further involve themselves in the affairs of the Old World, except to ensure that they have access to oil and, of course, export markets.

It is, on the whole, a much more pleasant history than either of the Yngling timelines. We might even see a peaceful revolution in Germany, in the style of our 1989, leading to a loss of control of the Scandinavian puppets, Croatia, and Russia, but also to a much more dynamic economy and personal freedoms. Still, the world will not be without its flashpoints of conflict: India, Korea, Australia (whose Ethiopian settlers will likely seek independence, if not reunification with the mother country) and perhaps border skirmishes in the Himalayas where ghazi fanatics may well seek martyrdom against the infidel - or, indeed, where the Senate and the People may find it convenient to demonstrate their resolute support for the legitimate aspirations of the oppressed Indian peoples. Even so, by 1990 this world should be much wealthier than ours (assuming, at least, that it manages to avoid a devastating nuclear exchange), with millions of Chinese ex-peasants industriously working away at supplying the world with manufactured goods. I would not be surprised to see a Moon shot ten years earlier than in OTL, and an even faster development of space.

Perhaps, even, when the Quantum Device is finally invented - "it follows inevitably from the unification of gravity with quantum field theory" - this world will not contain any people so unsatisfied with their lot as to use it. Even the Russians who have lost two-thirds of their old empire, even the Khanate with its millennial ambition to reunite all its lost provinces, even Punjab which always desires to spread submission into the House of War - even these revanchists and irredentists may well flinch from the final desperate choice of the mad Ynglings. It is no light matter to throw away a thousand years of history. Who would destroy the desperate courage of the battle at Jvris Ugheltekili? Who would cast into nonexistence the bitter struggle against Russian numbers? Who, even, would throw away the blood and sacrifice of Athena Squadron? Not this Rome; not the Rome that is rightly called the Eternal City, although its mere geography may change from time to time. Rome remembers; and this history for all its bitterness shall not pass away.
 

BootOnFace

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I would applaud, but all I can do is type.
 

Irsh Faq

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I'm glad you envision a more peaceful world. I would like to think that is the way it would go.
Hmmm. A mighty nation defeated, its overseas territories divided up but its core remaining mostly in its hands - enough taken to ensure the wound rankles, but not enough to cripple the country? Large ethnic populations of the loser apportioned among weak, newly formed neighboring states? Treaty-mandated military limitations (on nukes) that are foreseen to be unenforceable? And you peaceniks have ended without even a single nuking, so while sober-minded scientists may understand the bomb's danger, there is no Hiroshima or Nagasaki to impress its terrible power upon politicians and the general populace, meaning that any future belligerent power faces a much lower barrier to kicking off a worldwide nuclear exchange?

It's the Versailles Treaty of the nuclear age, with uncannily close parallels. It may just be my sad disappointment speaking, at a Great Game ending without even a single nuking to watch, but I like to imagine that a Kongolese corporal with a mustache might be in Ethiopia's future... and with an overconfident Ethiopia likely to open out WWIII with a mass nuclear assault, likely the final destruction of the entire nation in retaliation (along with much of the rest of the world) would follow very soon after.

(It would certainly be more like I would like my country to go out :p . As I said during the first war, Gonder is too proud a city for the yoke; the fires of the atom provide a more fitting fate)

I disagree with you though about Australia being the problem point. It may be ethnically Ethiopian and a possession of the nation since times immemorial, but it's far off and was always sparsely populated to begin with. Using my own feelings as a guide to Ethiopian national sentiment (which I think is fair enough since I was the place for many centuries) Australia, like most of the Pacific empire, would sting to lose but not so greatly that it would doom Ethiopia to inevitable nuclear revanchism. Ultimately the nation could mourn but tolerate their loss. Mesopotamia is nearby and valuable but not ethnically Ethiopian. Even Jerusalem and the Syrian area might be sacrificed, there are strong ethnic ties but Jerusalem is less important if the religiously-charged royal line has been deposed.

Arabia though is right next door to Gonder, populous, industrious, and almost 100% ethnically Ethiopian. Parts of it were core heartland territory dating from Ethiopia's eu3 start. It is also under the rule of a minor power which will be required to repress that large majority of its population to survive. I think that would be the Sudetenland (or the Danzig) if anything, not Australia. Speaking as the (former) incarnation of Ethiopian national sentiment: I think it's very likely that once it gets its hands on mass nukes, perhaps after a truce of twenty years or so, it would - if those lands were unrecoverable by peaceful means a la Munich - initiate nuclear Armageddon in an attempt to regain them. Even if it had no real hope of ultimately winning the war (as OTL Germany probably didn't).

Heh. It might be cool if Arabia were nuclear-Munich and then Jerusalem nuclear-Danzig.

I suppose the peaceniks among us may hope for your future though KOM :p

(In this timeline, Anatolia is still largely Greek in ethnicity, although converted to Islam.)
I might misremember, but I'm pretty sure there were hardly any Greeks left in Anatolia by the time AOD rolled around. Maybe a hundred thousand or two? I know more than half of it had already culture-flipped even by the end of eu3. The Ethiopian administration would likely have promoted them however and tried to coopt them, in a fashion similar to the Ottomans in the Balkans IRL - and there are a lot friendlier historical ties between Greeks and Ethiopians than between Persians and Ethiopians - as a tool to control the larger Persian/Arabic population, so you might find those that do remain very influential. I think a Greekish elite and an Arab/Persian underclass would be plausible.
 
Last edited:

King of Men

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My feeling is that EU3 culture-flips are modelling the top layers of the population, and that the peasantry would still be largely Greek-speaking. Basically I think that neither the CK nor the EU3 models of culture are really fine-grained enough to properly model this sort of history, and so I basically ignore the gameplay here and go with what I feel would happen. At any rate the Persians of this history never practiced the sort of ethnic cleansing that the Turks did in ours. The Turks didn't really understand trading and urban economies, and smashed Greek Anatolia as much from ignorance as from intent. The Persians did understand cities, wanted to take over a functioning and wealthy area, and co-opted the existing rulership structure (apart from a few thousand insignificant refugee holdouts, that is) rather than destroy it. The "Komnenoi" of Anatolia may well be more numerous than those of New Byzantium!
 

Irsh Faq

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My feeling is that EU3 culture-flips are modelling the top layers of the population, and that the peasantry would still be largely Greek-speaking. Basically I think that neither the CK nor the EU3 models of culture are really fine-grained enough to properly model this sort of history, and so I basically ignore the gameplay here and go with what I feel would happen. At any rate the Persians of this history never practiced the sort of ethnic cleansing that the Turks did in ours. The Turks didn't really understand trading and urban economies, and smashed Greek Anatolia as much from ignorance as from intent. The Persians did understand cities, wanted to take over a functioning and wealthy area, and co-opted the existing rulership structure (apart from a few thousand insignificant refugee holdouts, that is) rather than destroy it. The "Komnenoi" of Anatolia may well be more numerous than those of New Byzantium!
Hum. The fact that the Greeks were traditionally linked to Persia's arch-enemy Croatia (being an accepted culture of the latter all through eu3 and v2) and that Persia lost them as an accepted culture at some point relatively early in eu3 makes it seem unlikely to me that they enjoyed any particularly high influence in late Persian Anatolia. The situation you speak of is likely soon after the conquest; but half a millennium of societal change, industrial revolution, and constant warfare with the Greco-Croats later, in a world where successful peoples have multiplied and spread beyond the wildest dreams of the medieval imagination, is the situation in Anatolia really just the same as it was in 1399, with entrenched Greek aristocrats and foreign Persians?

Anyway, eu3 did leave a sizable minority of Greeks in Anatolia - it was v2 where they really assimilated.

Anyway, though, I guess there is only one way to truly resolve these questions of interpreting the game. Nuke Anatolia to dust! Then we can be sure exactly how many Greeks - and Persians and Arabs and Ethiopians - are left there! ;)
 
Last edited:

Gollevainen

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terms like revenge, retaliation, winning or loosing loose all their meaning and context while everyone has enough nukes to destroy the earth. Who won the NSARN? who's mutants were victorious... In sense KoM is rigth, the world would be peacefull after africa would have fougth to the death (conventionall means)
 

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Arabia though is right next door to Gonder, populous, industrious, and almost 100% ethnically Ethiopian. Parts of it were core heartland territory dating from Ethiopia's eu3 start. It is also under the rule of a minor power which will be required to repress that large majority of its population to survive. I think that would be the Sudetenland (or the Danzig) if anything, not Australia. Speaking as the (former) incarnation of Ethiopian national sentiment: I think it's very likely that once it gets its hands on mass nukes, perhaps after a truce of twenty years or so, it would - if those lands were unrecoverable by peaceful means a la Munich - initiate nuclear Armageddon in an attempt to regain them. Even if it had no real hope of ultimately winning the war (as OTL Germany probably didn't).

Heh. It might be cool if Arabia were nuclear-Munich and then Jerusalem nuclear-Danzig.
Arabia would be a Catalan-influenced vassal. In exchange for policy adjustments (i.e. democratization) and strengthening of Catalan-Ethiopian economic ties, which sadly went the wrong way with the post-Irsh administration, I'm sure a mutually beneficial plebiscite can be arranged.
 

King of Men

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Hum. The fact that the Greeks were traditionally linked to Persia's arch-enemy Croatia (being an accepted culture of the latter all through eu3 and v2) and that Persia lost them as an accepted culture at some point relatively early in eu3 makes it seem unlikely to me that they enjoyed any particularly high influence in late Persian Anatolia.
Unlikely or not, that's the canon of this AAR. :) Observe that as late as 1863, a Komnenos is an officer in the Persian army, and Lysandros observes that the surname is "common in Anatolia among the landowning class".
 

Irsh Faq

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Fair enough! DeathLong life and prosperity to the Greeks!

Arabia would be a Catalan-influenced vassal. In exchange for policy adjustments (i.e. democratization) and strengthening of Catalan-Ethiopian economic ties, which sadly went the wrong way with the post-Irsh administration, I'm sure a mutually beneficial plebiscite can be arranged.
What? Diplomacy aimed at finding a reasonable, livable compromise? We can't have this sort of thing going on!

(but... but... a world with no nukings at all? :wacko: It goes against my every peanutly instinct! It's madness! It could never work!

...could it?)

;)