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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

LWE

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Welcome to my third Victoria story, this time about Greece, played in NNM with some minor changes. My skills aren't that great, so don't expect a world conquest - in fact, I'll be playing at Easy. Note that the Greek situation in NNM is somewhat different than in Vanilla - notably, in NNM Greece doesn't start in anyone's sphere, so you can't use British troops to capture the gold mines of Johore for you.
_______________________

Greece was both an ancient and a new nation. Boasting of ancient achievements and glories, the Hellenic State was formally recognized by the Great Powers only four years before 1836. Unlike the prosperous industrial-manufacturing giants like Britain or the USA, Greece was a poor country with little industry, exporting primarily fruit and cotton cash crops.

The Bavarian Council of Ministers surrounding the young king Otto was all too aware of the country's poor situation, increasing the tax rate to maximum possible, despite the unpopularity of these measures among the people, primarily among the artisan class, and preparing the establishment of Greek Stock Exchange to financially stabilize the country.



The young King Otto knew that Turkish rule over the Aegean remains deeply unpopular. In secret from his conservative ministers, he sent weapons to the local Greek rebels.



The Council of Ministers placed great importance on placating the Great Powers.



Expansion of the Greek Army was significantly hampered by the kingdom's povertry. Unlike the Great Powers, it could ill afford to maintain a large army.



The measures taken by the Bavarian ministers managed to improve the kingdom's finances, although the romantically-minded young king paid to attention to these matters.

In the beginning of November 1838, the Ottoman governor of the Isles, frustrated at the lack of progress in dealing with Greek insurgents, massacred a small village on Chios. Despite the objection of his ministers, Otto encouraged the press to publicize the incident, which became a major diplomatic scandal.

"Have we done enough for the brave Greek people"? asked the pro-Hellenic press in Europe. But there were other voices that insisted that Otto's rash irredentism shouldn't be encouraged, as long as Ottoman authorities make geniune attempts at reform.

In the end, Tsar Nicholas, despite his misgivings, sided with Greece, while British PM Lord Melbourne expressed his confidence in Turkish reforms, siding with the Sultan in the name of international stability.



The Greek public supported their King, leaving the Bavarian ministers to their financial instruments and stocks. While initially demoralized by the King's actions, the Bavarians were happy that with the Chios Incident occupying Greek minds, the people would complain less about high taxes.

 
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stnylan

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All Greeks dream of Konstaninoplis, like all Brits dream of tea.
 

LWE

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I initiated the crisis on the islands, because in my previous playthroughs as Greece, I found them to be rather hard to conquer. Since their population is quite small, Turkish immigration there can eventually lead to me losing my cores there (it's possible in NNM). Furthermore, Greece usually receives Thessaly in the Berlin Conference event, while there is no non-military way to annex the islands.

And I didn't make a reference to the EU4 Purple Phoenix DLC for nothing ;)
_______________________

Emboldened by English support (Melbourne also convinced Spain to join in, guaranteeing a diplomatic triumph), the Sultan demanded Russia restores Georgia to Ottoman overlordship. This demand outraged the Tsar and made the war inevitable.



Austrian troops poured over the Turkish-Austrian border.



Russia landed a strong expeditionary force in Thrace.



The Spanish army, weak from civil war with the Carlists, could not resist the French onslaught, with King Louis-Philippe agruing that Catalonia should be placed under French "protection" until the Spanish situation stabilizes.



The British expedition, landing in Normandy, was trapped by the northern French army.



Seeing the failure of their French expedition, the British tried to intimidate the Greeks. British landing in Peloponesse forced the Greeks to abandon their siege of Thessaly and proclaim mobilization.



In retrospect, these measures were not needed. At Kalamata, the British forces were dealt an ignoble defeat, with the British general being killed in the fight. This battle, in which Greece defeated an army from the greatest power on Earth (even if that army was noticeably inferior in numbers), greatly boosted Greek self-confidence. It was immortalized in many paintings and patriotic operas.



Unplussed, the British landed a larger expedition on the Greek islands. But British allies could no longer resist the coalition against them.



Ottoman troubles didn't stop at this, as, emboldened by the Ottoman defeat, Muhammad Ali Pasha of Egypt threatened to proclaim his empire completely independent of the Sultan...

 
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Oh my goodness things aren't good for the Turk
 

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I couldn't add Thessaly. I guess the game decided that the French were greedy enough for Catalonia already for me to add more demands.
_______________________

Greek admirals persuaded King Otto that it is necessary to do a small expansion of Greek fleet. Otto ratified the expansion, despite the objections of Bavarian ministers. Meanwhile, the Greek liberals, heirs of Greek Enlightment, were founding underground printing presses in the country.



Upon hearing from his spies that the Egyptian navy had been destroyed by the British one during the British intervention in favor of the Ottomans, Otto decided to strike, declaring war on Mehmed Ali, demanding for Crete to be liberated.



Pressured by the British, the Sultan proclaimed progressive reforms in his realm. While beneficial to Ottoman Greeks, this was not welcomed by Greek nationalists, since it meant the Great Powers would be less inclined to view the Empire as illegitimate in controlling so many Greek lands.



Greek detachments suvvessfully landed on Crete, albeit the small rebuilt Egyptian fleet repelled an attempted Greek blockade of Alexandria.



On land, the Egyptians were successful, acquiring more of Ottoman Syria and preventing British occupation of their mainland. Soon after the Sultan made peace with Egypt, the British signed a white peace with the Khedive, too.



The arrest of a British national from Ionian Islands further increased the nationalist sentiments in Greek society.



The Dutch, who were still allied with the Ottomans, landed on Crete, too. But the Dutch general was a philhellene and did not disturb Greek occupation authorities.



Greek government took all steps to alleviate the potato blight on the Aegean.



Finally, after the blockade of Egyptian coasts done by Greek admiral Foumis, known to his admirers as "the Lightning", Egypt was forced to give Crete to Greece. Mehmed Ali was said to compare Greeks to annoying mosquitoes, who, nevertheless, are hard to kill.



Ottoman troubles didn't end with the secession of Egypt. A group of Albanian conservatives protested against the Tanzimat, and, with French support, threatened to secede from the Empire.



The sacrifices done by Greeks in the wars were immortalized in many new syphonies written by Greek composers. Many of them were done in a new, realist manner, recalling not the glory of ancient Greek heroes, but the sufferings of common soldiers. The new musical style gained respect all over Europe.



Eager to develop Greece, Otto overruled his non-interventionist ministers and ordered funds from treasury for a Cement factory to be constructed.



The situation in Albania finally exploded into another Great Power conflict linked to Ottoman decline.

 
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Quite a lot of war going on
 

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Yep, the early years of Victoria 2 are more dynamic then they were in real life. I like that, though.
_______________________

With heavy heart, Otto and his ministers had to deny funds to relieve the potato famine in Attica, as that violation of free trade policies could mean decrease of his country's standing among the Great Powers. Of course, those actually starving didn't care about the state of the government's hearts.



The suffering of Greek poor, however, provoked an upsurge in macambre and depressing realist art.



Otto managed to escape public responsibility for the famine by firing his Bavarian ministers, blaming them for the country's ills, while declaring the establishment of the Hellenic Parliament to placate the discontent liberals. The liberal Great Powers of UK and France approved of the new constitutional monarchy.



The Greek people, were, in general, quite religious and considered Orthodoxy to be a major part of their identity. The most radical among them advocated a certain measure of pluralism, or even secularization, but outright atheism was unheard of.

I wonder why only atheists get upset at such a response...



The Ottoman Empire, to Greeks' glee, lost another patch of territory.



Frightened by the continuing destabilization in his empire, the Sultan abolished the constitution. Greek diplomats pointed out to this act as the evidence of the Ottomans' perfidity.



The conservatism of Greek people was never in much doubt.



When the time came to appoint a First Minister, Otto refused to appoint a Bavarian, and instead appointed Yannis Makriyannis, a famed War of Independence fighter and constitutionalist.



The new government dealt admirably with the cholera epidemic in the capital.



Covert support for joining Greece among the Greeks of Thessaly was increased.

 
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I still feel kinda sorry for the Sultan
 

Italianajt

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Why do you have Bavarian ministers in Greece?
 

LWE

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Nope, Greece doesn't have a core on Albabia's southern territory, although there are some Greek pops there.

As for Bavarian minsiters, the first Greek king, Otto, or Othon, as you prefer, was a Bavarian prince who brought Bavarian court officials with him when he ascended the throne.
_______________________

The potato blight hit the small kingdom again. Otto felt that he had no choice but to institute generous relief programs, despite the British objecting to such government interference in the market.



The Ottomans failed to subdue Greek rebels in Thessaly. This provided yet another Great Power conflice over the Ottomans' fate.



Thesalian crisis escalated as pro-Ottoman Prussia demanded Alsace from France, claiming it as rightful German land.



All Greek politicians agreed that bad demography is a major issue facing Greece. Thus, measures to make Greek hospitals use new medical equipment were non-controversial.



As the crisis escalated into war, Greece was ready for it. The weak Sicilian invasion force was easily smashed.



General Dousmanis became a national hero by repelling a far more dangerous Ottoman incursion.



At the demographic front, the recently founded Demographic Institute of Greece pondered the way genetics could improve population growth.



The war-time flu pandemic was tragic both for the common Greeks and for the fellows at the Demographic Institute.



At least, the Greeks always enjoyed to give a bloody nose to the Brits, even if this wasn't so much of a bloody nose as a minor prick on Great Britain's skin.



Despite bombastic pronouncements from Greek press, the war was really decided in Prussia. After many setbacks, Russian armies finally managed to surround the main Prussian forces.



While common Greek people were reading pulp novels about Greek military heroes - from antiquity to 1852 - artistic writerns in Athens experimented with a new literary style. Rejected by most Greeks for its vagueness and lack of pomp, it was hailed among Paris intellectuals.



Finally, Prussia and Ottomans had to agree to terms, with Greece taking over Thessaly and Austria taking over Bosnia to "ensure continuing stability in the Balkans".



The Greek rebellion refused to be put down by mere pieces of paper. Volunteer Greek battalions under the command of Lufti Pasha, a famed Turkish renegade, advanced from Thessaly to Macedonia.



Otto dediced to slightly expand the franchise under popular pressure.



Teachers and educators were sent to Thessaly, to increase national consciousness and literacy in the new Greek subjects.

"Teachers" or "Educators" is probably the better name for the class Victoria 2 calls 'clergy', especially since they have no relation with actual religious policies of ruling parties.



The increase of patriotic feelings in Greek society did little for Greek prisoners.



Finally, the Greek rebels in coastal Macedonia defeated the remaining weak Ottoman forces there.



Greek government managed to take over the ex-Ottoman clothes manufactories there.



This shock caused another coup in the Empire.



Unfortunately for the Greeks, the new Tanzimat-aligned Sultan proved to be a better suppressor of Greek rebels than his reactionary predecessor.

 
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LWE

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Dice rolls were not a problem here, the only battle when I might have been defeated was the battle with Ottomans in Thessaly, and even there I had the numerical and military technology advantage. This, however, is my 4th or so attempt at Byzantium restoration... I envy people who can achieve a World Conquest as Bali.
_______________________

It was defitinitely predictable that Prussia would win in its war with Austria, while the UK, after a great effort, was soon able to overcome Qing armies and annex Hong Kong.



At the peace treaty conference, Otto promised to respect the property of his new Turkish subjects, however, he wanted to ensure that the non-Turk and non-Greek population of Thessalian Bulgaro-Vlachs was properly Hellenized.

This is the "Begin assimilating Thessalia" tooltip.



What Austria gained in Bosnia, it lost in Banat, as the Anglo-Prussian alliance forced Austria to retreat from the area.



As reports to the king sadly confirmed, much of the new population of the Kingdom was ignorant of the glorious Greek history, since its Turkish masters ruthlessly repressed any attempt to bring enlightment to the Greeks under its rule. Fixing this required education subsidies from the budget - at least, this was not a problem, as the new Business Banks and the drastic increase in Greece' population and resources meant that for the first time, the kingdom's finances became abundant enough to be flexible.



In revenge for English defeats on the Balkans, Britain conducted a nice little victorious war against France in the Caribbean. Far more notable was the sudden Italian reunification under Garibaldi's Redshirts.



Assimilation policies in Thessaly were meeting with partial success.



Common Greek peasants felt the benevolent results of technological progress, as new chain stores were opening all over the kingdom.



While many Greeks viewed the downfall of Papal State with glee stemming from anti-Catholic sentiment, others felt alarm at Italian anti-clericalism.



However, it was no secret that the Carlists felt Greece to be a dangerous revolutionary element, allying themselves with the Ottomans in order to receive privileges and favorable trade treaties from the Sultan.



The freethinkers of Athens viewed the American school of Pragmatism with some respect, believing it to be a corrective to the overly-mystical strands in Greek philosophical tradition.



But publications in philosophical journals were not enough to prevent a simple fact that Greek influence was fading away. The new states of Italy and (surprisingly dynamic) Japan had far bigger armies, larger industries, and more clout on the world stage, despite recent Greek gains.

 
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stnylan

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Mmm, a little case of Mediterranean envy? That might not be so healthy.
 

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Ooh, I do love a well written Greece AAR. And this one is short and sweet to boot!

I will be watching.
 

LWE

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Tsar Nicholas I supported the Austrians when Hungary tried to become independent in 1848. However, upset with Austria refusing to support him against the Ottomans, he changed course.

Greek ministers looked at the world events with alarm, always making an effort to modernize its army.



"Stupid Turks and Bulgaro-Vlachs", murmured the aging king upon receiving news of ethnic tensions in Thessaly. "I guess you couldn't expect anything else from the Turks, but why the Bulgarians are so hostile to Hellenic efforts to civilize them properly?"



Indeed, if the Great Powers of Europe advocated their "civilizing mission" in colonies, in Greece this mission was perceived as internal. Resources were poured into proper education of people living in newly gained lands. With more then a touch of ethnic bigotry, Greek nationalists were complaining how such a city like Thessalonica is filled with Turks and Jews, thinking that a proper education may revive the Hellenic spirit in the land.



Greece had no trouble recognizing the Egyptian ownership of Levant.



The UK, however, apparently decided that if the Ottomans can't have Levant, it's better for it to be directly controlled by the British Empire.



Greek literature and art portraying all the troubles Greek peasants had with the new reaping machines and power looms gained, for some reason, only limited international recognition.



Austria had to cede Galicia to Russia.



Greek generals debated between themselves on the issue of recruiting Turks into the army. Most opposed the idea, but war hero Dousmanis was for it, provided their numbers would be limited.



The Greek secret police finally had something to do - spy in Turkish villages and report on any signs of discontent or looming uprising. Night arrests of more intrasigent Turkish activists did not win Greece any sympathy with the European public opinion, even as Greek intellectuals pointed out that the Ottomans did far worse things with Greeks.



The British had no trouble with the Egyptian armed forces.



Even through Russia won a victory over the Ottomans, the Turks continued to have powerful allies and protectors.



Soon after this, however, Russia had to suffer the same terms itself, as its effort to help France regain Savoy from Italy ended in disaster.



It also had to release Galicia.



Local enterpreneurs of Peloponnese had started a liquor industry. While "that cheap Greek liquor" became a synonym for lack of quality in the European market, the Greeks didn't care as long as they still made decent profits.



The Greeks were not invited to the Congress of London. This was a major hit to dreams of recovery of rightfully Greek lands, as the British insisted that the Ottoman Empire is already weakened enough and shouldn't have its territory being cut back even more.

Even North Bulgaria wasn't released. Maybe the coding for that event took the already existing Ottoman losses and decided that enough is enough?



Austria finished this part of the Galician cycle by annexing the new state, citing subversive Polish and Ukrainian activities there as the reason.

 
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