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Old 01-21-2024, 01:55 PM   #6411
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Try this idea. Trotsky takes Warsaw in 1920. Stalin, desperate to prove himself takes the Red Army into Germany and marches for France. Absurdly overextended and lacking supplies Stalin and his army are crushed by an Anglo-French army working with fresher troops and shorter supply lines.

Stalin is killed in the battle but the Anglo-French armies aren't able to go on and crush Trotsky both because of instability at home and inadequate supply lines. Trotsky is unable to go further into Europe and is also forced to retreat from Warsaw because Stalin left the Red Army to weak to fight the White(Royalist) and Black (Anarchist) armies. The Russian Civil Wars last into the 1930s.

Germany, crushed by the Red Army recovers very slowly. Hitler seems to have died in the Red Army invasion. Goering and Speer seem to be the only prominent Nazis in public life in this world, and both are simply opportunistic reactionaries on the fringes of politics.

Consequently this world hasn't gone through WWII. FDR did run for a third term (successfully) and America is stable and progressive. The Civil Rights Movement is showing up earlier than on Homeline, but without the distractions of WWII and the Cold War that makes sense. The British Empire is still in tact as are the French and Dutch empires. Without either WWII or the Cold War they haven't been disrupted.

This world is transitioning into TL7 fairly steadily however unusually advanced computer technology is showing up in the USA. Articles in the popular press are describing the internet and personal computers. Homeline wants to know what is going on. Centrum is just as confused. The also dislike the idea that the USA, which is Anti-Imperialist in this world (that fits early 20th century America, just not our stereotypes about it) might suddenly become dominant in this parallel.

Note: It's a Cabal plot to keep Homeline and Centrum focused on America and out of Europe and Asia.
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Old 01-21-2024, 02:37 PM   #6412
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Hitler seems to have died in the Red Army invasion. Goering and Speer seem to be the only prominent Nazis in public life in this world . . .
It's quite unlikely that the Nazi Party is at all significant in this world. It didn't amount to anything until Hitler joined and discovered his gift for public speaking and demagoguery. If he was called back to the army in 1920 and got killed, it will likely return to its previous insignificance.

Historically, Goering joined in 1922, after hearing a Hitler speech, and Speer in 1931, when the party was quite important. They may be in politics, but they're unlikely to be in the Nazi party.
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Old 01-21-2024, 05:23 PM   #6413
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It's quite unlikely that the Nazi Party is at all significant in this world. It didn't amount to anything until Hitler joined and discovered his gift for public speaking and demagoguery. If he was called back to the army in 1920 and got killed, it will likely return to its previous insignificance.

Historically, Goering joined in 1922, after hearing a Hitler speech, and Speer in 1931, when the party was quite important. They may be in politics, but they're unlikely to be in the Nazi party.
The Nazis as such don't exist. But Goering and Speer do. That's all I was getting at.
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Old 01-21-2024, 10:45 PM   #6414
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Mansa Muhammad ibn Qu -- 'Mansa' being roughly equivalent to 'King' -- was the presumed predecessor to Mansa Musa, arguably the wealthiest man in history and Emperor of Mali circa 1312. While records are not clear, Mansa Musa claimed that his predecessor sailed west with a fleet of 2000 ships in search of the far side of the Atlantic ocean.

With two thousand ships, it is not hard to imagine that SOME kind of successful voyage must be possible. If Mansa Muhammad had managed the crossing, he would have arrived roughly a decade before the Mexica would found Tenochtitlan.

Should the Columbian exchange begin two and a half centuries before otherwise established, the differences would be incredibly profound. Among other things, the more primitive sailing tech might result in early contact being so sporadic as to not be effective for colonization. Conventionally, this gives the inhabitants of the western hemisphere time to recover and adapt.

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Old 01-22-2024, 12:30 AM   #6415
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With two thousand ships, it is not hard to imagine that SOME kind of successful voyage must be possible. If Mansa Muhammad had managed the crossing, he would have arrived roughly a decade before the Mexica would found Tenochtitlan.

Should the Columbian exchange begin two and a half centuries before otherwise established, the differences would be incredibly profound.
Of course a successful crossing doesn't mean an [exchange] happens. You need two crossings for that. That's always the hard part. None of the Earth's water gaps are impassible for even quite primitive boats. If you know where (and what season) to make the attempt, and pack the right supplies, almost all of them can be done reliably in an open rowboat, never mind anything more seaworthy or maneuverable. The difficulty is the first people to make a crossing don't have that information for either direction, and while luck means some of them will survive the trip one way, the odds of guessing the right place to start to go back (which is [not] where the winds and currents carried you to on the way across, that's almost the worst spot to try by definition - the winds and currents point the wrong way!) are not very good.

Although 2000 ships and the advantage of being in the iron age is probably sufficient to establish a pretty significant state of their own even if they can't get home again.
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Old 01-22-2024, 08:10 PM   #6416
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I've heard of that one! Apparently, due to a current called the Canary Current, getting back by that route would be a lot more difficult than getting there, though you could have an alternate history where they still managed it somehow, maybe with freak weather conditions that allowed some of the ships to make it back and thus encourage further attempts, or maybe with a divergence a bit further back that meant they had ships that were better suited to it.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlant..._of_Mansa_Musa

A scenario where a lot of people got there and established a settlement but none got back and there wasn't an exchange might also be interesting.

You could have the Malian-Muslim-descended state itself somewhere in the Americas. Possibly, I don't know enough about the Mali empire (as in, I know practically nothing about it) to hazard a guess about whether they'd have attempted to take over, convert people to Islam, or just co-existed peacefully, but if there were no reinforcements from home doing a complete takeover might have been impossible. Also, they wouldn't have guns to speak of, so it'd be a more even fight in that way too. Judging by Wikipedia, it's just possible, in fact, that somebody on that voyage could have known how to make gunpowder, if a GM wanted to throw that in.

A completely different distribution of native civilisations (since, as you say, they'd be just in time to potentially throw the founding of the Aztec Empire off course).

Native populations that had had more time to recover and adapt, as you say - by the time other visitors arrived, they might have acquired at least a little bit more immunity to Old World diseases, and they'd probably also have acquired the secret of smelting bronze and iron.

It seems like, iron might not be such a game-changer there as it was elsewhere, since the main thing about it is that it's very common and that's not so much the case in the Andes (I'm not sure about other parts of South or Central America), but bronze by itself might be a big deal, if they had decent supplies of tin - I don't know if they did.
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Old 01-23-2024, 08:14 AM   #6417
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It seems like, iron might not be such a game-changer there as it was elsewhere, since the main thing about it is that it's very common and that's not so much the case in the Andes
That's false [almost] anywhere. There are probably some islands with no iron ore, but it really is just about ubiquitous. The maps you tend to see of it are for sources big enough to support gigantic modern mining operations that produce kilotons of ore, but there are smaller scale sources that are no longer economic all over the place, and even with the modern economics it can be a side product. Several phosphate mines here in Florida apparently manage to generate some revenue from iron, despite the fact the entire state was formed from limestone last week geologically and you wouldn't think it had time for ore body concentration. There are bog iron and iron sands and limonite and all sorts of other ore bodies smaller than 100 mile wide giant banded iron formations that go on those maps.
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Old 01-24-2024, 03:11 PM   #6418
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Try this one. Historically, empires that let people join up lasted longer than those that don't. China might seem like an exception, but Chinese empires collapse regularly. No single Chinese empire lasted as long as Rome, either Western or Eastern. China keeps coming back so it gives an illusion of continuity.

In the 18th century the British East India company joyfully let Indians join. The Anglo-Indian children of British men and Indian women were welcomed into the service of John Company. British officers and troops freely attended Hindu religious ceremonies and treated them with great respect.

With the 19th century and Romanticism all that changed. Where in the 18th century the bigots were looked down on, in the 19th century those that respected Indian culture and cultural norms were mocked and lampooned. Firm statements from London about "not wanting Brown Englishmen" were commonplaces.

But suppose that didn't happen. Suppose that Romanticism became seen as corrupt continental nonsense. Picture a world where "Brown Englishmen" were accepted with respect. The Anglo-Indian union would be an enduring great power.

Picture a late 20th century with two pairs of Great Powers, and each pair not really liking their partner.
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Old 01-24-2024, 08:57 PM   #6419
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That's false [almost] anywhere. There are probably some islands with no iron ore, but it really is just about ubiquitous. The maps you tend to see of it are for sources big enough to support gigantic modern mining operations that produce kilotons of ore, but there are smaller scale sources that are no longer economic all over the place, and even with the modern economics it can be a side product. Several phosphate mines here in Florida apparently manage to generate some revenue from iron, despite the fact the entire state was formed from limestone last week geologically and you wouldn't think it had time for ore body concentration. There are bog iron and iron sands and limonite and all sorts of other ore bodies smaller than 100 mile wide giant banded iron formations that go on those maps.
Possibly, I was just speaking off the top of my head there (I didn't think there was likely to be no iron, but I had the idea it wouldn't be a useful amount compared to bronze), thanks for the info. It sounds like, it's even more anything-might-happen, then.

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Try this one. Historically, empires that let people join up lasted longer than those that don't. China might seem like an exception, but Chinese empires collapse regularly. No single Chinese empire lasted as long as Rome, either Western or Eastern. China keeps coming back so it gives an illusion of continuity.

In the 18th century the British East India company joyfully let Indians join. The Anglo-Indian children of British men and Indian women were welcomed into the service of John Company. British officers and troops freely attended Hindu religious ceremonies and treated them with great respect.

With the 19th century and Romanticism all that changed. Where in the 18th century the bigots were looked down on, in the 19th century those that respected Indian culture and cultural norms were mocked and lampooned. Firm statements from London about "not wanting Brown Englishmen" were commonplaces.

But suppose that didn't happen. Suppose that Romanticism became seen as corrupt continental nonsense. Picture a world where "Brown Englishmen" were accepted with respect. The Anglo-Indian union would be an enduring great power.

Picture a late 20th century with two pairs of Great Powers, and each pair not really liking their partner.
Possibly, I'm being dense here, but when I think of Romanticism all that comes to mind is art and Wordsworth and Marianne Dashwood and so on - could you explain what looking down on India had to do with Romanticism?
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Old 01-25-2024, 01:17 AM   #6420
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Possibly, I'm being dense here, but when I think of Romanticism all that comes to mind is art and Wordsworth and Marianne Dashwood and so on - could you explain what looking down on India had to do with Romanticism?
Blood and Soil mysticism was a key part of Romanticism in Europe. The right-wing of Romanticism strongly promoted racism. The Enlightenment wasn't consistently anti racist, but Romanticism (outside of left leaning artists) was consistently racist.
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