• Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

El Pip

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Well after describing the ending as hilarious I believe you are now irrevocably committed to giving us that summary.

On your next choice I'd read either, I'd suggest the HOI3 option is probably the simplest to do as you wont have to care about patches and all the problems are at least well known. On the other hand you'd probably get more readers with EU4 as it's newer and shinier.
 

Nathan Madien

Field Marshal
Mar 24, 2006
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Hey there, welcome back. :)

I'm sorry to hear about your problems. Real life has a nasty way of derailing good stuff like this AAR.

As for this AAR, you could try starting over on HOI3.
 

Le Jones

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The King’s First Minister – The Conclusion




HMS Indomitable (R07), Pacific Ocean (75nm North of Tuvalu), 28 May 2007


High up on the Bridge, Commodore John “Jackie” Oront gazed at the American cruiser and rubbed his chin with his thumb and forefinger. Indomitable’s Commanding Officer, Bennett, and his second in command, Commander Muir, knew the gesture; he was worried.

upload_2018-5-12_23-23-17.jpg

“It’s all right gents”, Oront said, half whispering, “I’m just not caught out for all of this ‘cloak and dagger’ stuff. My father would have loved all of this, but not me”.

Indomitable had endured something of a charge to make the rendezvous, cutting close to two tropical storms (although, Oront allowed, one had been completely made up to justify Indomitable losing the escorts) and completely ruining the Pacific Squadron’s training programme. Muir had moved to “FlyCo”, essentially a small control tower adjoining the Bridge.

“American helicopter heading to spot two”.

“Roger”.

upload_2018-5-12_23-23-17.jpg

“US Marines, by the look of ‘em” muttered Bennett. “Are you sitting in on the meeting?”

The Commodore put down his signal board, a collation of messages to the Fleet from London. “I am, and I’d better be going. Is 4 Tango all prepared?”

Bennett felt a flash of irritation. ‘4 Tango’ was the Flag Officer area, with Oront’s suite of cabins, Bennett’s Day Cabin (as CO, at sea he lived up on the island) and a large, well furnished Dining Room. Bennett’s team had worked for hours to prepare the Dining Room for the meeting. It was not like Oront to question Bennett’s management of his ship, and showed how on edge the Commodore was.

“It is Sir, my team is all over it”.

Oront grunted, indicating assent, and left the Bridge. Bennett scanned the horizon again, searching for the escorts. It was rare that the “Indy” went anywhere without at least one frigate or destroyer in company. As Britain’s flagship of the Pacific squadron the light carrier was a key asset, and as one of only four light carriers, a precious resource. Smaller than the larger fleet carriers of Ark Royal, Furious, Albion and Canada they were still very capable. The four ships, Invincible, Illustrious, Indomitable and Implacable, rarely operated together with one assigned to the three main UK squadrons (Atlantic, Mediterranean and Pacific) and the other in refit/training. After a few years operating from Singapore Indomitable was next in line for a much needed refit; Illustrious, Bennett thought to himself, will be completing her training soon.

Robert Belsay, Permanent Under Secretary of the Commonwealth Office, was an odd choice for such a “cloak and dagger” meeting but, coming back, as he was, from a meeting of the Commonwealth Space Council the cover story was perfect. A discreet RNZN patrol craft making a rendezvous with the UK flagship in the area? Perfectly normal, routine activity. The fact that the New Zealand exchange officer was actually a senior civil servant would not be noted by any foreign power. Belsay was looking forward to dining out on how he was winched onto Indomitable. Which is why, after such careful steps to minimise the risk of a leak (such as detailing the two frigates to flee from an imagined tropical storm) he found the Americans’ overt (actually rather brash) handling of the situation so irritating.

Oront entered and sat next to Belsay. Both clutched at the detailed notes from London and neither was entirely happy with this mission. Oront poured himself a glass of water, hoping that a miracle would make it a stiff gin.

“Here they come,” Belsay said, suddenly animated. Four men, all dressed identically in light camoflage, walked in escorted by Bennett’s Secretary, a young Lieutenant. Before the Lieutenant could make the introductions one of the Americans removed his helmet, and with an outstretched hand walked towards Belsay.

“Hey, I’m Mike Lorimer.”

Both Belsay and Oront were slightly shocked that Under Secretary of State should be with them, in disguise. Both had expected a junior CIA/military official. To his credit, Belsay recovered quickly and shook the offered hand.

“Robert Belsay, Her Majesty’s Permanent Under Secretary for Commonwealth Affairs. This is Commodore Oront, Commander UK Pacific Squadron.” Oront, introduced, offered a curt nod.

“This is Colonel Ziegler, US Marine Corps.” Zielger’s nod was even more curt than Oront. Christ, we’re in a “nod off” now, Belsay feared.

“Gentlemen,” Belsay began, as refreshments were offered and refused. Two weeks ago British tracking and monitoring observed a rocket re-entry and landing not far from where we are sat. Given the trajectory and other data” here the Americans realised that the British were not going to tell them everything. We believe that the origin came from Siberia.”

The Americans looked surprised. “Go on”.

“Commodore Oront, here, on receiving the notification directed our deep sea exploration vessel Darwin to the scene. We have the wreckage, and are prepared to share our findings with you. But it is the conclusion of Her Majesty’s Government that the Alliance of Federated Russian States has perfected an ICBM capability.”

“Hang on just a damned minute” that was Lorimer, looking suspicious. “We know they’ve got a basic missile capability, everyone knows that. Like everything they do, the knowledge is stolen or bought off the Germans. But a nuke?”

“We have the conclusions of the Commonwealth Atomic Committee here.”

Colonel Ziegler didn’t believe it. “Why are you guys giving us this?”

Belsay nodded, “a good question, Colonel. To be frank, we are worried about the prospect of an Alliance nuclear assault upon Germany.”

Everyone rushed to speak, but none of them ultimately did. With their European heartlands a German colony the Russian territories in Asia, divided in the wake of the collapse of the USSR in 1946 and united only by a fear of further German incursion were, evidently, more united than previously believed.

Lorimer had half wondered, on the flight out, if Russia was the topic of this bizarre summit. The British, in whose sphere China (nominally) sat were known to be terrified of a Russian descent upon their increasingly frayed patchwork of colonial/allied interests in Asia. For the Americans, with their satellite state of Japan protected by the sea (Russia had no naval capability), a more detached view could be taken.

“I also wish to reassure you that this, in no way, is a British operation”, Belsay added in a rushed tone. That made sense to Lorimer; the Brits were offering as much information as possible to convince the US that they weren’t sponsoring Russian missiles that could threaten Alaska and the US possessions in the Pacific. Ziegler was studying a pack of satellite imagery and analysis of the wreckage. Lorimer would wait for an assessment before coming to a conclusion.

Ziegler looked up from his papers. “What do you want to do next?”

That was key, and one where the Americans doubted whether Belsay had the authority of the British cabinet, never mind the Commonwealth Council. Nevertheless the plucky civil servant seemed undaunted.

“We would like to reconvene the Allied Cooperation Board.”

Ziegler laughed. “But, Sir, that hasn’t sat in over forty years.” He was referring to the postwar attempts by Halifax’s successor, Oliver Stanley, and Henry Wallace, who took over from the ailing Roosevelt, to maintain a united UK/US position when dealing with Germany and Russia. It had collapsed over two crises; the obvious US support for decolonisation and local insurgencies (particularly in China and Indochina), and Britain’s sponsorship of the “student’s revolt” in occupied European territories. The result of both had been a high body count.

Lorimer looked at the watercolour showing Indomitable at sea, escorted by British, Canadian, Australian, Bengali (although, shrewdly, the Indian frigate was furthest away and look eerily like a Royal Navy destroyer), New Zealand and South African warships he felt his usual confusion when dealing with the British. If the social revolution of the postwar years had ripped apart US society it had done something more subtle, but no less lasting, to the Commonwealth. The words “Imperial” and “Colonial” had gone, replaced with “collective defence and allied”. To India, officially a federation of semi-autonomous states providing resource to, and protected by, the Commonwealth, there was still the advantage to be gained by surreptitiously working with the US, Russia and Germany where interests aligned, to the intense embarassment of Whitehall. Australia and New Zealand were loyal, if far away and hugely demanding. Canada had, early on in the breakdown of relations, been seen as a buffer state, a friendly area for US and UK to discuss their issues. For all of the chaos, Lorimer remembered that the first man in Space was British (triggering President Patton’s “Moon Directive”) and that they were the second of three nuclear powers (after the US, but before Germany. They were a strange race.

“Ok Mr Belsay,” Lorimer said carefully, “I think that we take this away and look at your findings. You continue to analyse, we will do the same. I then suggest that your Foreign Secretary meets with the Secretary of State.”

Belsay nodded. It was one of Whitehall’s options, and considered acceptable. “Toronto?”

“Yeah. Or the Bahamas. Part of your sphere, but having good relations with us”. Lorimer looked genuinely moved. “Perhaps,” he didn’t finish.

“Perhaps,” said Belsay softly, thinking the unsaid part. Perhaps this can be the start of something better, more secure.

Oront and Belsay walked the Americans up through Indomitable, where a Chief Petty Officer, one of the Flight Deck team, took them to meet the American helicopter. As Oront and Belsay shook hands, Belsay suddenly beamed. “Oh, one thing Mr Lorimer.”

“Sure?”

“In accordance with the Hong Kong protocol I must formally protest at the boarding of one of Her Majesty’s vessels by armed military personnel of the United States of America. Commodore Oront here will raise a protest with Colonel Ziegler.”

Lorimer looked baffled but said nothing as Oront shook Ziegler’s hand warmly. “Balls,” the Commodore said with finality.

As the Americans flew back to their cruiser, which turned away to rejoin their carrier group, Oront was quiet as he returned to the Bridge. Bennett looked at him with a raised eyebrow; Oront shook his head softly. “No, Captain, no war today.”

In the distance, the escorts, two overworked frigates, closed on their flagship.

upload_2018-5-12_23-23-17.gif

He picked up his signal board.

Indomitable sailed into an open sea.

Game Notes

The UK briefs the US on its worries about the rump Russian state’s technology. Belsay and Oront are, of course, the sons of the DLI Colonel last seen in the Far East and the canny spy who seemed very popular with the forum readers.

Indomitable is of course, HMS Ark Royal – I kept the class but changed the name, figuring that Ark Royal would be a larger, fleet carrier in our alternate RN. The photos come from a combined UK/US exercise in 2008.


Conclusion

Ok ok, this has been seven or eight years in the offing. In game terms this is what happened after the last entry, the British build up in China.

The War(s):

With the AI now completely mad the US eventually lands in Japan where its forces are, bloodily, successful. Meanwhile the British Empire forces, split between an overland slog through Burma and an amphibious toehold in China, eventually favour the China option. A “Peninsular War 2” attitude, with General Alanbrooke fighting with a smallish, tightly disciplined army in support of the Chinese to erode Japanese strength takes hold. Auchinleck’s overland odyssey becomes a diversion to keep the Japanese tied down in Thailand. Eventually a force fighting up through Malaya does enough to knock the Thais out of the war. On the Chinese Seaboard, with Thailand gone Alanbrooke gathers all of the UK effort and forms two light, battle-hardened infantry armies to support the Chinese whilst an armoured army (little more than a corps and a half of ARM and MOT) under Alexander and O’Connor races up the seaboard to relieve Hong Kong (which never fell) and cut the Japanese off from the sea. With the USSR losing badly in the East it never supports the US/UK effort against Japan and the war ends with the British controlling China and the US controlling Japan. There is never a Jutland/Midway style naval battle, and strategic bombing is as controversial as it is OTL (although this is largely a US problem). British troops get as far as Taiwan before Patton (!) takes the Japanese mainlaind. I intended that the postwar settlement would reflect where the armies were at the time of the ceasefire, but more on that later.

In Europe Germany wins, the USSR collapses and a rump state under Kerensky (!) took over in the game. Finland was occupied by the USSR and ‘liberated’ by Germany fairly late in the day (when it was obvious that Stalin had lost). Italy failed spectacularly to do anything against Syria and Lebanon (who declared independence after the fall of France in 1940). France (technically Vichy France) did nothing against the rebels (technically France, at war with Germany and her allies). Spain and Portugal, along with Sweden, sit out the war.

Postwar US

I think that the US has the immediate problem when the Allies defeat Japan. Invading Japan, particularly under Patton, would have been a nightmare and the US is haunted by the casualties that it suffered in a long, bloody pacification for at least a generation. This does effect the postwar settlement given to Japan, as America has paid a bloody price for victory and the canny and careful control exercised in OTL goes. Expect reparations and more forceful control of the Japanese constitution. I get that without a European entanglement the US has more to throw at Japan, but without atomic weapons the Japanese defend every beach, hill, village.

Would the US turn its back on the world, as it did in 1918? I think it would, although with caveats. The first task is to care for the hundreds of thousands of wounded veterans and bereaved families; the US has seen nothing like this since the Civil War. The sixties do see liberalisation and social change, but with a US economy that never had the kick start that the European war, Lend Lease and the Marshall plan brought, the US is not as rich as she was in OTL 1945. But, the US is still undoubtedly the leading power and the only one without any real entanglement. With ample resources, the cultural power of her music and films, and dominance of her oceans the US can afford to play a long game, which she does. The US wins the atomic race and it is only by huge sacrifice that the British beat the Americans into space (sorry, perhaps fantasy but I don’t care).

Postwar Europe

Put simply, life is fairly miserable if you were occupied in 1940 or 1941. Everything that the Axis (really Germany) can loot and send home they do. The further East you are, the worse it gets. Sweden, Spain and Portugal have, arguably, done well; they have avoided the pain of occupation. They are German-leaning if nominally independent; although I think that Sweden would struggle to retain her political independence (sorry Paradox!) given her encirclement by the Axis powers. Spain and Portugal retain some latitude, although how much Franco gets away with depends largely on the German appetite to meddle.

Greece is a British “red line” and is probably a cold war jousting arena; I’d expect that Axis agents easily slip in to cause trouble, while the British remain true to their word and invest massively in Greek defences. To both parties a war over Greece is seen as “just not worth it” and Germany orders Italy to leave Greece alone.

Italy is nominally a great power but gets nothing from the loss of so many of her young men in the Russian war and remains deeply wary of irritating the British in Africa. Italian students are among the most passionate supporters of the unrest in the sixties and the fragility of Italian fascism sees a gradual erosion of Italian independence as Germany shores up her stake in the Mediterranean. Italy’s fate, thanks to political incompetence and economic weakness, is to end up no more independent than defeated, manipulated, France.

France becomes Germany’s friend; her Navy is an asset in deterring Britain and her armies are better than the Italians. France is bribed to not go recapturing her lost Empire and instead supports the Russian war. For the second time in recent history, a generation of Frenchmen is wiped out in war, used as cannon fodder by increasingly desperate German generals. France ends the war weak, her industry obsolete and entirely focussed on war, her metropolitan population numbed by hardship and her economy looted. Without her Empire, she turns to Europe and asserting her remaining equity with smaller European powers. With Italy’s emasculation she is the obvious second power in Europe and a trusted ally of Germany. The British seizure of Indochina from Japan, severing France’s tenuous link with her colony, is the final rupture of Anglo-French cooperation.

Europe is a conundrum. This goes well beyond HOI2 but I think that some form of mass unrest is inevitable, as unsustainable German economic policies are coupled with the horrors that go on, unabated (and not talked about on this forum) for years to come. My “best for Germany” outcome is that European Russia takes the strain away from central and western European acquisitions. The story ended (in my head) with Germany the third power, lacking Britain’s global reach (I think that the returned Versailles African colonies would have been neglected by a Germany sacrificing all to beat Stalin, perhaps even traded away for much needed resources) and America’s economic and military might. The Germans have two strengths: their army, which ends the Russian war exhausted but unbelievably experienced. (the Luftwaffe and Kriegsmarine end the war neglected and underinvested) and their control of much of Europe’s centres of learning.

Communism is finished as a political force. The Russians that still enjoy a government speaking their language quickly dispense with the discredited Soviets and all hell breaks loose. The “best for Russia” outcome is probably as I have described, a collection of states

that mange to remain aligned enough to cooperate on some key areas (collective security, trade and infrastructure). The relationship with Germany is key – would they be vassal states, or warily independent?

Wider world

Turkey, I think, has promise and could lean towards any of the spheres; my instinct is that she would do a deal early on to preserve her independence. I had a storyline where the Turks gobble (sorry) Syria and Lebanon with German assent, to finish what the Italians had started and to stop the British. That is why I ultimately think that Turkey would tilt towards Berlin; they can offer territorial concessions that the British and Americans just can’t.

I just cannot see how the British give up Palestine. Possibly a mass unrest, but I am not convinced, given the events in Europe, that it remains anything other than a British controlled part of the Arab world.

The Middle East is a UK/US playground. Expect both sides to have client states and basing rights, even with the gradual loosening of formal Imperial ties. Germany and Russia will struggle to gain influence against well entrenched UK/US interests which makes German oil independence a key strategic aim (Romania therefore becomes vital).

South America manages to avoid most of the chaos – I think that Brazil and Argentina become strong second tier powers aligning themselves to one of the three blocs. With a Royal Navy such as that described by Cdre Oront 1982 does not see a Falklands conflict.

Postwar British Empire

The Empire is hugely difficult to get right. This is not “BritWank” (what a horrible term!) so I have tried to be fair. I think that India would gain some autonomy – too much had happened by 1939, never mind the late 40s. Without the fear of the USSR in my TL, and without the exhaustion of the European element of WW2 the British in my TL have more options. I am convinced that they try to avoid creating an Indian superpower by “balkanising” along ethnic/regional lines (perhaps subverting the princely states). With effort this could have been done (although Gandhi and a swathe of INC would have hated it). The “best for India” outcome is, I guess, that the bloodshed of partition is avoided (probably only mitigated). In the story I had Eden spot the food supply situation and avoid the Bengal Famine.

Australia and New Zealand feel that they have had a close shave. There is no outpouring of love for Britain, merely satisfaction that the Empire defended its own. They are attractive choices for Emigration from Europe, and probably those that can escape China and even Russia (and perhaps ‘things’ happening in central Europe). Eventually an “enough is enough” attitude takes hold in Canberra and the borders are tightened. Australia retains a line of communication to the US, given their shared interests in the Pacific. Both Australia and New Zealand suffer heavily in the nightmare that’s coming…

China. Here goes…The game put the British in control of China. With the US acting largely OTL and keeping everyone else out of Japan the British do the same with China, which, with the vacuum created by victory, collapses into warring factions. Alanbrooke and Alexander’s forces are unable and unwilling to fight their recent allies and are recalled to the UK (to form part of the deterrent against Germany). Fresh troops sent out, with a view to making China similar to India; a loose collection of ‘like’ states all in the UK sphere. What we think of as the Vietnam war is actually the Chinese Emergency (although it spills into Indochina) as the Commonwealth is asked to send its fighting men to pacify China. It is only by the threat of nuclear annihilation and the deaths of thousands of British and Commonwealth soldiers that an uneasy settlement is reached. Ironically, the scale of the slaughter means that the British get what they want, a weak but loyal (ish) series of buffers between them and the chaos of Asian Russia. British culture turns sharply isolationist, anti-Empire and anti-military as a result (and about 15 years after the Americans do the same). The “Establishment” plods on with a British nuclear programme, a limited space programme and a very RN/RAF focussed defence plan.

Africa is Africa, and usually means being occupied by a European power. What independence struggles occur (possibly Ethiopia, Sudan, Congo) are quickly and bloodily repulsed. The British loosen formal control as the Empire/Commonwealth becomes more an alliance than occupation. The US supports all decolonisation as a way to undermine its two key rivals (the UK sphere and the German sphere).

Back at the ranch…

Ah, the UK, sceptred isle, my home and the real focus of the Halifax AAR. In the immediate aftermath of the war the UK seems like a winner – she has not spent beyond her means, her land contribution was limited (and underwritten by the Commonwealth) and the Royal Navy largely unscathed. But…

Politically the Conservatives stagger on – Halifax retires, utterly exhausted, as soon as he has signed the UK bit of the treaty and is lauded as the man who saved the Empire. The criticism of his 1940 stance begins fairly swiftly, as the strength of the RN and RAF lead some to conclude that Britain could have held out after the collapse of France. Halifax remains popular with Australia and New Zealand for doing his duty and stopping the Japanese, but Americans remember him as a schemer who only supported them when the interest to the UK was clear. He and Churchill never reconcile and both die earlier than OTL (Halifax because he was drained by the trials of holding office, Churchill because he didn’t hold office).

Oliver Stanley succeeds Halifax; he is the compromise candidate and is immediately overwhelmed by the need to bring in both the appeaser and the hawk wings of the party (the parallels with the modern Conservatives over Europe are obvious). He tries a partial modernisation of the Conservatives around Collective Commonwealth defence, industrial consolidation at home and largely cosmetic improvements to healthcare and welfare. It is not enough for a population tired of overseas entanglements and stagnant standards at home and he is defeated by Labour. Under them (we’re now in the early 50s) the Empire turns into a sort-of-NATO/sort-of-EU esque bloc that stands as a counterpoint to the US and Germany. The cost of a nuclear programme that Labour could not (politically) afford to scrap as one of three great powers means that the Welfare state is more modest than OTL

Labour does stand up to the unions more than OTL so some of the industrial/economic woes are avoided (not all, I am convinced that a number of small firms would fight to preserve their independence). It is on Labour’s watch that China really collapses (the Tories manage to maintain the status quo with massive troop deployments) and it is a Labour PM (I’m floating Gaitskell, but also perhaps George Brown) that is the only world leader to ever threaten to use nuclear weapons (to the horror of all) on every faction. That, and the brigade/battalion commanders from the Pacific War now reaching high command push the counterinsurgency into something more modest and therefore successful. But Labour’s reform plans are ruined by the attention given to China. Labour is ejected after two bloody terms in office and a new generation of centre-right Tories take over. Instead of the in/out debate over Europe that has dominated/crippled UK domestic postwar politics OTL it is the Commonwealth that divides opinion. The good thing for the UK? It avoids the bankruptcy and loss of status that haunted her until the 1980s. But with a threatening Europe across the Channel, the British can ill afford to show any weakness. Northern Ireland remains a weirdly isolated little horror, which is resolved much as in OTL (although probably later, given the lack of US influence).

And that’s it. Originally I had a fully mapped out Pacific War with my usual schizophrenic updating rate. If you want to know what killed the AAR – two things. The first was that I was trying to write up a France update and just couldn’t get it right. I was tilting toward making an espionage update but it eluded me. And when I returned from a self-imposed absence months had gone by and Halifax and the Britain that he created seemed very difficult to get into. The other was that, when I did feel ready to return, a couple of real world issues stopped me from getting on to the laptop for more than a few minutes a week.

The AAR stemmed from the flexibility of HOI2 – and my desire to explore what happened if the TL was deliberately skewed away from the anticipated WW2 schedule. It is to HOI2’s credit that it, with an AI mod and a game editor, managed to spawn something so far from history as we know it (as it did with El Pip and Trekaddict’s masterful AARs). The decision to write based on a Halifax PM POD came from a visit to the DLI museum in Durham (well worth a visit) and my curiosity as to how a UK without Dunkirk and WW2 would have fared and the game was played over a couple of weekends when I was taking my wife to and from her distance learning masters (oh! The Horror!).

I mulled a resurrection but by then the world had marched on to HOI3. HOI3, in many ways, is my dream game. I can obsess over the OOB, the combat (land sea and air) is quite good, and the map is very clean. I quite like the way doctrines are handled. But, like the four course meal that stumbles at pudding, it is totally, completely and irretrievably strangled by the faction system. KFM would be impossible (well, beyond my modding means) in HOI3 which I find frustrating.

And then we get to HOI4. I love the industrial system and I like the arrangements for naval and air combat. I hate just about everything else. There is a place in hell for its approach to land warfare, particularly the simplified C2 system. That, and the lack of any meaningful espionage, means that, as currently comprised, you’re all safe from Halifax. That and the fact that destroyers seem to die like flies…

My last thoughts are of Halifax. Every time I reflect, as I do occasionally, on the AAR, I reaslise just how foreign the emergency British PM feels. Perhaps it is because he lacks the familiarity of Churchill, Chamberlain, Roosevelt et al. Ten years ago I could have, probably, held my own in a Halifax symposium. But understanding what made him tick eluded me, and still does. I admire his integrity, his pragmatism on matters as varied as India, economics and military spending. But, he was hopeless domestically, overinflated his own mental capacity (and physical stamina – Churchill wouldn’t have got a migraine over the slightest thing) and was completely, tragically misguided on European affairs. He was, and remained for all of this life, a Victorian (I would even hesitate to call him an Edwardian). He saw things through a lens of careful diplomacy, a concert of nations, and gentlemen from similar backgrounds pursuing the same narrow objectives.

We wouldn’t have gotten along – I’m far too middle class and lack the careful pedigree that would make the PM comfortable in my company. The best that I can say is that we would have found cause in a love of Agatha Christie and a Northerner’s mistrust of London scheming. But ultimately, I would end up holding the door for Trekaddict to slap him repeatedly.


FIN
 
Last edited:

AtlanticFriend

Captain
Jan 2, 2018
355
0
Wait wait wait. What parody of justice is this? A great AAR resurfaces, only to disappear forever leaving the word FIN in its wake??? Nooooooooooooooooooo!!! :eek::(
 

Kurt_Steiner

Katalaanse Burger en Terroriste
Feb 12, 2005
19.814
579
Well. You ended t'he AAR, which is not a common achievement for many AARtists. Congratz.
 

AtlanticFriend

Captain
Jan 2, 2018
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Where will we find Halifax's speech impediment now? Or such History-packed chapters?
 

El Pip

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Huzzahs all round chaps we've reached the end and it was magnificent, not least for the British being first to Space, as is right and proper.


It is a fascinating world you've left us with and as promised does contain some hilarious imagery - Halifax being admired in parts of the commonwealth! Being seen as a cunning schemer by Americans!. I'm not sure I agree with all your conclusions, for instance I think on balance the US efforts extended and worsened Northern Ireland's troubles (*cough*NORAID*cough*), but I congratulate you on mixing the good, the bad and the terrifying (George Brown Nuking China, probably while a bit 'tired and emotional' :shudder: ) to make one plausible and intriguing whole.

Overall a post of bitter-sweet catharsis. As Kurty says, well done on reaching the end, but poor us on no longer having any more of it to read. ;)
 

Le Jones

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It is a fascinating world you've left us with and as promised does contain some hilarious imagery - Halifax being admired in parts of the commonwealth! Being seen as a cunning schemer by Americans!. I'm not sure I agree with all your conclusions, for instance I think on balance the US efforts extended and worsened Northern Ireland's troubles (*cough*NORAID*cough*), but I congratulate you on mixing the good, the bad and the terrifying (George Brown Nuking China, probably while a bit 'tired and emotional' :shudder: ) to make one plausible and intriguing whole.
I know - I wrestled with Northern Ireland. I gambled with Whitehall not feeling as pressured for a political settlement in the absence of foreign interest.

Am mulling an HOI4 AAR - perhaps something with a WW1 MOD focus (and UK focussed - it's what I do).
 

El Pip

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I know - I wrestled with Northern Ireland. I gambled with Whitehall not feeling as pressured for a political settlement in the absence of foreign interest.
I suppose less international interest would mean Whitehall could take a 'firmer' line on the issue and make it less of an issue.

Am mulling an HOI4 AAR - perhaps something with a WW1 MOD focus (and UK focussed - it's what I do).
I'd be very interested in that if you do mull in the correct way. I've avoided HOI4 due to lack of time to play it (I'm also wary about getting onto a CK2 style DLC treadmill) so I'd like to see what you do with it.
 

Le Jones

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Well, I am playing the game now merrily pressing F11 everytime something interesting happens. If the game is vaguely historically plausible then I'll write it up as an AAR. I like WW1 as I feel that HOI4 is just too cartoonish at WW2.

I get the DLC entrapment bit - I used to blindly cash in but am now more selective. CK2 is an incredible game and one in which I have enjoyed hours (usually with mouse in one hand, sleeping infant in the other, often at 0200 - 0400) of mad fun. I'm just not sure that my level of background info, that made KFM so fun to write, would be up to a medieval setting.
 

Nathan Madien

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I really enjoyed reading this AAR , so I am happy to see that Le Jones returned and wrapped this AAR up. :D

I get that without a European entanglement the US has more to throw at Japan, but without atomic weapons the Japanese defend every beach, hill, village.
In my experience with HOI2, even if you hit Japan with atomic weapons, they don't quit like they did historically. Unlike Germany which surrenders after you meet certain criteria, Japan just keeps on fighting. I had to capture every victory point Japan had (the last one being in Hong Kong) before I could finally annex them and declare World War Two to finally be over. I have never played the later HOI games, so I don't know if defeating Japan has gotten any better or if you still have to fight the Japanese literally to the last man.
 

El Pip

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Le Jones

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I shall second my own post and confirm we now, as we have for quite some time, need another @Le Jones AAR.
- I'm mulling. It will, if I do it, be HOI4. And it will, if I do it, be British. It swings, like KFM, on one (actually, technically two) POD distinct enough to allow a) me to go off on my merry frolic and b) HOI4 to not completely f**k it up. This is why it has to be HOI4, HOI3 encourages one to stick to the conventional...