A “guest post” from Blayne, the Chinese player, explaining his views on the future history of this timeline. My own thoughts will follow next week.
Determining how this goes from here I highly doubt would be accurate since had we played with say Armageddon expansion we coul at least get to 1965.
But I do know some things:
The war with England would have happened, Japan is far too strategically close to the mainland to allow the presence of nuclear weapons. At least as things are now Beijing is at the farthest most limit of Norways range.
Japan would have been liberated and Canada liberated with various islands captured, the Royal Navy while large is mostly obsolete and China’s CVGs would have made short work of the battleships in clear skies.
Norway as King of Men can attest. while the sole real opposition to the Comintern, would have been quiet, a Cold War of sorts would have ensued with the two sides supporting bloody proxy wars between their puppets, Romania-Hungary, Slovenia-Croatia. Russia-Poland, and Chinese occupied California would have been consolidated with fortresses, infrastructure, naval bases and significant PLA presence due to Yngling presence in the midlands and the Eastern seaboard.
The modernization of the world’s militaries will result in a relative shrinking of standing militaries (Although the Comintern forces will seem large), abolished peasant militias and a sudden spurt in industrial and GDP output from the Comintern states as China and Russia with peace final and heavy can focus on industrialization.
The spiraling costs of the arms race, while subtle at first will make all second and third tier nations dependent on either dependent on the 2 camps for arms and training as the costs are far too great for any single nation to handle.
Industrialization forces the renewed search for new oil reserves and research into feasible civilian nuclear power making the material depletion issue a non issue as Romanian, Siberian, and Middle Eastern oil provide the Comintern with all of their needs while the “Axis” and the Non Aligned States are forced to discover seaside oil wells, Texan and Canadian oil to provide theirs.
If we had continued I suspect some edits to the map would have been done to add in some new mines and wells.
The costs of navies would have forced England to scrap large portions of its fleet and replace them with nuclear powered vessels and a new focus on Carrier airpower, Norway needing to protect the flow of oil would have invested in a modern navy as well.
The relative size of their industries would have forced Ynglings to make a renewed effort to improve upon quality rather then quantity.
Spain would have held onto its Empire through Chinese aid alone, as the multiethnic forces used by Spain to defeat at first the Burgundians and then the Ynglings would have returned home to demand autonomy, escalating into full fledged revolutions and wars where Spain, buckling under the strain and with confused domestic politics, call upon China to crush the rebellions in Columbia, Chile, Veneuzela, and Argentina, this is the first major proxy war of the new Cold War as Norway sends guns, volunteers, and money to the insurgents.
With the Ynglings giving the appearance of conciliation and passivity at first the Chinese pushed plans for B.E.M.O fall through, as bickerings between the various governments cause a collapse of Socialist workers’ solidarity; the first skirmishes occur between Romania and the Democratic Workers Republic of Byzantium, and likewise between Croatia and Serbia fighting over the fate of poor Montenegro, escalating as the Croats are the first to forgo restraint and against Chinese wishes to mediate send 2 divisions of soldiers to occupy the City state brushing aside its feeble city guard.
The situation further escalates when Croat infantry execute children accused of throwing rocks at Croatian tanks, causing unrest in the city; a desperate urban fight for the city ensues between the Croatian People’s Army, and the Montenegro Liberation Front.
Serbia takes advantage of the poorly handled situation and seeing a inactive and distracted China as its opportunity to invade Croatia over the Montenegro question, the fight between the Serbs and Croats escalates from a border skirmish into a full blown war as both sides employ their full arsenals to the fight. The terrain and the ethnic makeup of the respective nations makes a modern war following traditional rules of war and opaque lanes of advance deteriorate as the entire region plunges into warfare and ethnic strife.
China, distracted at the crucial time by the insurgency in South America, reluctantly sells weapons to both sides as per its agreement, as the Comintern charter did not have adequate means of dealing with intermember conflicts, so China is forced to sell weapons to both sides, neither side pressing the issue to stop China from selling to the other preferring to focus their efforts on the conflict.
The Romanian-Greek war over the status of the Autonomus Region of Varna was thankfully for China quieter as it had devolved to a stalemate due to poor terrain and with Chinese observers muted in their conflict the 2 sides lacked the military tradition to effectively wage an offensive war and soon both sides requested Chinese mediation and a cease fire after 6 months of intense fighting was declared.
And not a moment too soon….. As Hungarian Tanks rolled over the border simultaneously invading Romania and Croatia with Slovenia upset over the treatment of ethnic Slovenians also send troops past the border.
Greece hurting from the war withdrew into neutrality and withdrew its forces while Romania, Croatia, and Serbia all retooled their war efforts to fight the common foe. Hungary supported by Polish air support and Yngling volunteers and equipment was able to militarize into possibly the most heavily armed state in the northern Balkans and made striving successes.
Burgundy firmly in the Yngling camp stayed quiet.
India and China had issues over the status of the Indus valley region, but a compromise was reached where while sovereignty of the Indus was transfered to India while rights to station troops and utilize the port of Kutch.
Since Siberia was never fully colonized by Russians except in the sense of sent political exiles there wasnt much of a claim by Russia on Chinese held siberia, but pen border agreements and a common passport allowed the free flow of ethnic russians back and forth through the regions as China treated Siberia more as an economic zone rather then as a colony relying on Hungarians and Russians to colonize the region as the Chinese imputus to colonize it was limited.
The war between the Universal People’s Republic and England would have ended with the fall of Japan, losing the more territories detailed above should have they have fought on which seems unlikely considering their economic and financial difficulties, its plausible that the costs of holding Japan would have been greater then cutting it off.
An independent and Beijing friendly Japan would help Beijing share the defence burden of East Asia as Japan could focus on marines and a surface navy as China beyond the Great 8 Fleets could retool to more of a strategic nuclear submarine force with CVG’s in more a support role.
economically the path of socialization for the Comintern due to the large front of left wing parties would have resulted in a softening of Mao’s rhetoric against the capitalist “cats” allowing for a military-industrial complex with a friendlier relation with prominent businessmen and private property giving a free market dynamic to a planned system ensuring that while the economies of the rest of the block did grow, China’s would continue to grow faster as its far greater reserves of cheap labour and open market dynamics could keep the system efficient and fully functioning.
The Chinese economy could focus on manufacturing, and services and depart heavy industrial growth and focus more on consumer products as the wars being fought were mostly by smaller flexible forces and supported primarily by naval task forces.
Absolutely and relatively Chinese GDP would outpace the rest of the world by 1970 although it was not absolutely greater then the whole world put together the economy of China was very much the bedrock the world was based on, even the opposing superstates of the Ynglings would be forced to admit a certain level of interdpendence in the money markets and global trade between them and China overall.
fleets, armies and airforces will continue to shrink every generation as weapon costs spiral exponentially, so that the “9 Million” man Chinese army will never occur again, by 1960 the PLA would have been reduced to 2.5 Million servicement plus 1 million paramilitary “reserves”, with a significant focus on its naval and airpower. 60 Tupolev heavy stratobombers being the speer head in its nuclear strategic bomber detterent with some 200 Dongfeng-8 ICBMs to deter the Norwegian “Empire” from trying anything funny.
Some 50 airdivisions would defend China’s airspace from aggressors.
The People’s Liberation Army Navy would by this time possess some 20 Modern aircraft carriers based on 1954 projections, 5 modern battleships, 3 modern battlecruisers, 100 destroyers, 20 Heavy cruisers 34 Light cruisers and some 10 nuclear submarines and some 150 conventional diesel attack subs.
This is of course “planned” I suspect the real figures would have been ploser to 14 modern aircraft carriers 4 of those still in drydock, 1 modern battlecruiser, 56 destoryers, 10 hvy cruisers, 28 light cruisers and 4 nuclear submarines.
China’s military would probably be the most strained, considering the insurgency, the massive requirements to defend all of the Cominterns defence commitments, and the added strain of footing the bill for the Balkans.
England and Norway would have an even worse time competing due to their smaller sizes but theyre more active private sector can plausibly provide them some of their defence requirements. Norway would undoubtably try to give active combat training by supplying volunteers to fight the various proxy wars, a casus beli ignored by China as neither side would rationally risk a nuclear war over the relatively minor issues.
Yes China could by 1965 bring Norway to its knees and cripple it but so could norway through Englands trident missile system bring them to their knees, the chances of China “winning” a nuclear standoff gets steadily less as each year goes by to the point that nuclear think tanks switch from a more aggressive minded doctrine to that of deterrent and what is soon called “MAD” Mutually Assured Destruction as the nuclear arsenals of all the major powers could destroy the world 5 times over, further tightening the level of restraint that the two sides have for fear of starting Armageddon.
Hungary’s wareffort would enevitably collapse as war eschaustion and the eventual entry of Greece into the war brought about the final formation of “B.E.M.O” allowing China the added framework to smooth over ethnic rivalries in the region and formulate a centralized military command to be chaired by the Greeks to be prosecuted against the Hungarians with Chinese officers providing assistence.
The Republic of Hungary would soon collapse as one coup after another paralyzed its war effort allowing the 3rd Shock Army to be destroyed by combined Romanian, Greek and Balkan forces, Yngling intervention prevented the total collapse or partitioning of Hungary but it was a brutal political blow to the Axis as Hungary was forced via treaty to yield to BEMO’s demands, Presov was annexed by Romania and the country was to be occupied by BEMO peace keepers until a “peaceful, responsible government could be freely elected by the people”. A compromise was reached where Montenegro while maintaining its independence would be stationed with Chinese and Greek troops to assuage Serbian and Croation fears of the other side using it as a staging point and both nations had to pay the costs of rebuilding the city state.
Greece as such became the de facto leader of the Non Aligned Movement, becomming the Balkans mouthpiece to the Comintern Congresses, China would due to public pressure at home and mounting costs abroad withdrew from South America and pressured Spain to allow democratic elections for new governments.
The United States of Central & South America where formed where while Chinese and Spanish troops kept a presense in the Panama canal, Veneuzela, Columbia, Chile, and parts of Argentina, Guatemala and Nicaragua all formed this new “nation” joining the non aligned movement but agreeing via treaty certain arms and political limitations.
Spain due to its deeply embedded aristocratic leanings even with Socialist administrations in power is in theory nominally separate from the Comintern, cooperating militarily but maintaining its own internal affairs with no intefearence from Beijing, I would like to draw the parrelell between Spain in our timeline and the Centarui Republic of Babylon 5.
Also it should be noted that the original purpose of the internet was veyr much largely to have a communications network that could survive a nuclear war, there would be some form of internet in the 90’s, as Bolshevikism having to ameliate the differences in doctrine between dozens of Communist parties would have been somewhat more moderate and Kirov’s wish for a freer flow of information for research would have been possible albeit with some safe gaurds, a internet at first meant for the military and then expended for major firms, and senior researcehrs, then to universities and then for greater public use would accelerate once the first and second generation fo leaders died out or retired and more moderate and forward thinking technocrats took upo the reigns.
Also, I am fairly certain that China having such friendly relations to the Greek monarchy before it got annexed by Burgundy would have had the Emperor-in-Exile somewhere safe not Norway, and while yes the new Greek republic would probably have had the Emperor restored in a head of state nominal role. China has generally been less concerned with idealogy and more concerned with practical solutions in OTL as long as China’s interests were safe gaurded one way or another.
The Soviet economy in OTL grew fairly fast as long as it had ample manpower to focus on it, I have no doubt tthat economic growth even without the open free market laissez faire eocnomy beyond britain economies would have adapted and still grown. That Britain would to some extent side with Norway is plausible but Greece making a break for it is not likely, as long as when Greece recovered and was given a free hand in being the de facto leader of the Baltic states being protected by China’s nukes from Polish invasion and an easily negotiable economic position makes it far more likely to integrate with China then with the rest of europe past BEMO.