political effects of a delayed start to WW2

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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by OpanaPointer » 21 Dec 2022 18:50

The Japanese military told the emperor they had fuel for three years of peace or one year of war. If they're not getting any from outside then the one year of war would be halved in 18 months? IJA and IJN didn't want that.
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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 23 Dec 2022 00:46

The three years fuel included coal from Asia. Ellis in Brute Forced placed the petroleum reserve for industrial use as something else. Have been reviewing day by the S Pacific operations of 1942 & the Navy was cutting back on fuel consumption as early as October. Leaving BB out of the S Pac battles, other than two Kongo class was part of that.

Trivia bit: In 1943 Japans industry started planning converting oil fired plant back to coal.

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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by OpanaPointer » 23 Dec 2022 02:06

The figures I gave were for the entire economy, of course.
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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by OpanaPointer » 24 Dec 2022 20:13

Wendell Willkie, Republican candidate for president in 1940, on isolationism. https://teachingamericanhistory.org/doc ... lationism/
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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by Cantankerous » 24 Dec 2022 22:10

OpanaPointer wrote:
24 Dec 2022 20:13
Wendell Willkie, Republican candidate for president in 1940, on isolationism. https://teachingamericanhistory.org/doc ... lationism/
By mentioning that the US should support the UK militarily not just "because we are sympathetic with Britain’s economic, social and cultural way of life but primarily because in her preservation of that way of life the hope of preserving it in America will be assured", he wanted to make the point that if the UK lost its war against Nazi Germany, the US would be in grave danger because he probably knew that many of the principles upon which the US was founded had their origins in the UK but also understood fears among African Americans that a Nazi victory could embolden white supremacists to step up violence against African Americans.

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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by OpanaPointer » 24 Dec 2022 23:11

My favorite "what-if": Europe, all of it, falls to the Axis. This is in part because the US remained isolationist. The Axis decides that the US needs to be eliminated before we changed our minds. The Nazis and samurai tell Mexico: "If you let us through to invade the US and Canada we promise (sic) to not violate your territorial boundaries again. We will also return the lands you lost to the US."

Not judging Mexico there, they would have been in a very awkward position and the above is just one possibility with Europe gone.
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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by T. A. Gardner » 25 Dec 2022 01:46

OpanaPointer wrote:
24 Dec 2022 23:11
My favorite "what-if": Europe, all of it, falls to the Axis. This is in part because the US remained isolationist. The Axis decides that the US needs to be eliminated before we changed our minds. The Nazis and samurai tell Mexico: "If you let us through to invade the US and Canada we promise (sic) to not violate your territorial boundaries again. We will also return the lands you lost to the US."

Not judging Mexico there, they would have been in a very awkward position and the above is just one possibility with Europe gone.
The problem with that is, the US very early on declared a "Hemispheric Defense Zone" that included the Caribbean and Mexico, along with declaring the Americas off limits to European powers outside of existing colonies. The Germans might try something with Mexico, but the Mexican government is almost 100% certain to not go along with it. Germany has no real political leverage to force the situation.

If anything, the Germans would likely have more luck with Argentina--in particular--and other S. American nations that were reticent to be close US allies. Of course, that doesn't really get them an invasion point into the US...

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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by OpanaPointer » 25 Dec 2022 02:27

Yeah, my what-if was an extreme case. The more radical of the America Firsters were calling for not having our troops outside the contiguous 48 states.
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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by nuyt » 25 Dec 2022 14:03

While waiting for my Xmas dinner some thoughts...

The issue with this interesting scenario is that if AH decides not to attack Poland in Sep 1939, we still do not know what the other powers will do. The Soviets are no doubt still attacking Finland and continue to have designs on the Baltics, Poland and Romania/Bessarabia (don't know about Turkey and Persia). They also need to watch their backs for Japan. So if Germany does nothing for 18 months, what will Stalin do? Attack Romania, the Baltics? Poland? The whole of Europe will watch with horror and figure it's Stalin that is the worst enemy to democracy. The Soviet Army will no doubt crush the Baltics, still have trouble in Finland (but getting there) and occupy Bessarabia. Will Hungary join in and attack Transylvania? Will Germany join in and go for the German parts of Romania together with the Hungarians? What are the consequences? What if this move is presented not as an attack in conjunction with the Soviets, but as a preemptive occupation of large chunks of Romania to prevent them turning communist? And what if similar happens in Poland? Without a Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact, a Soviet attack on Eastern Poland, followed by a collapse of Poland, German troops can try to enter Poland to prevent the Soviets take over the country completely and become a mortal threat to Berlin? How would France and UK react to that? Still declare war on AH?

And what will Mussolini do? Not threatened for another 18 months in North Africa, will he attack Greece in October 1940 (with Italy holding some Aegean islands already since the 1920s)? Or will he try to destabilize Yugoslavia in order to cherry pick some towns on the Dalmatian coast?

Back to the Netherlands. IRL this neutral country, once overrun, had political leaders that suffered from defaitism. The Dutch prime minister in exile in London, De Geer, was fired there as soon as August 1940 by the Dutch Queen (who was no way a defaitiste) for being just that. Incredibly, De Geer returned to the occupied Netherlands to publish a pro-German pamphlet. A former prime minister of great standing, Colijn, still in the occupied Netherlands, thought Germany would be ruling Europe for a long time, and published a similar story advising the Dutch to accept their fate. Both however never ended up as collaborators and were interned by the Germans, who did not trust them (and may have thought De Geer was a spy because of his return).

With no German assault in May 1940 and no occupation, one can wonder how these fellows' thoughts would have developed. The Dutch forces, although still no match for a large and well trained and armed adversary, would be much better equipped by mid 1941, still neutral and still unchallenged throughout their empire. With a better navy, air force, with a much better armed army (heavily allotted with modern AA, AT and field guns, but probably still without a lot modern heavy guns nor tanks), they would be a harder nut to crack for the Germans. So the Dutch political leadership would probably still believe heavily in neutralism, buy arms wherever they could and hope for the best.

Back to the main scenario, so AH attacks in spring 1941. What exactly does he attack now? If it's still there, a much better armed Poland, to end up in a two front war with the UK and France like IRL? Would AH's thinking remain unchanged all these 18 months from his thinking IRL? Or does he attack the small neutrals first, like Norway, Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands, knowing that he will soon face the UK and France as well? Or does he interfere in Eastern Europe against the Soviets, gaining sympathy from all over the world, especially from the Americans? Note he is still supplied with oil, trucks and other stuff by the likes of Standard Oil and Ford. Will the Americans fund his war against the Soviets? Will he seek an alliance with Poland? Or if he did occupy Western Poland like described above, are we talking about a March or April 1941 Barbarossa, with its much needed extra months discussed so often on this forum?

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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 28 Dec 2022 01:41

OpanaPointer wrote:
25 Dec 2022 02:27
Yeah, my what-if was an extreme case. The more radical of the America Firsters were calling for not having our troops outside the contiguous 48 states.
Roosevelt in his first six years leaned that direction. He ended the Marines extended activity in Nicaragua, dialed down the Marines in Hati, Brought the 15th Infantry Regiment back from China, and signed off on Phillpines independence in ten short years. It was duiring 1938 that fascist activity in Europe, particularly the Nurenberg laws and general imprisonment of Communists, Jews, and other "enemies of the nation" by Germany caught his attention. A fair number of New Dealers favored one or another isolationist policy A number of them fought the Warhawks for Roosevelts attention from 1938 & opposed the increased Navy and War Dept budgets of 1940-41.


In general Isolationism faced more towards Europe and ignored the permanent stationing of the US Asiatic Squadron in China & it accompanying regiments of Marines and Army. The deployment of a reinforcing Marine combined arms Brigade to Shanghai in 1927 was not effectively opposed.

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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by OpanaPointer » 28 Dec 2022 03:56

The thing about groups like America First was their ineffectiveness. They never blocked legislation they opposed and never passed a bill they supported.
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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 29 Dec 2022 17:02

Cantankerous wrote:
24 Dec 2022 22:10
OpanaPointer wrote:
24 Dec 2022 20:13
Wendell Willkie, Republican candidate for president in 1940, on isolationism. https://teachingamericanhistory.org/doc ... lationism/
By mentioning that the US should support the UK militarily not just "because we are sympathetic with Britain’s economic, social and cultural way of life but primarily because in her preservation of that way of life the hope of preserving it in America will be assured", he wanted to make the point that if the UK lost its war against Nazi Germany, the US would be in grave danger because he probably knew that many of the principles upon which the US was founded had their origins in the UK but also understood fears among African Americans that a Nazi victory could embolden white supremacists to step up violence against African Americans.
Wilkie recognized what Roosevelt did and the hard core isolationists did not, is that The US economy had grown through the 19th & early 20th Century from exports. Europe was the largest & most important export market. The Great War had disrupted that & the pendulum was swing away from the free market in the 1920s. The replacement of the the growing economy of Russia with the war ruined and dysfunctional Communist economy, the ideas about closed imperial economies were reemerging globally. None of that was moving back to the freer markets that had powered US growth and prosperity.

Isolationists like Ford or DuPont thought they could do business with the nazis. Perhaps those few dupes could, but the mass of US business was increasingly cut off as the facists & communists economies developed, & then went south when the war started. initially this was masked by the surge in industrial orders from France & Britain 1939-40, but the collapse of France was a giant red warning flag of how Facist expansion & the ongoing war was in the long run damaging the foundations of the US economy. Whatever Roosevelts rethoric and his New Deal economics he understood clearly that if the US was to return to the solid economic growth of pre Great War 1. The current war needed to end sooner rather than later. 2. The peace needed to be on US terms. That is a rapid shift globally to a new version of the free markets that benefitted the US in earlier decades or 19th Century.

This economic factor had a lot to do with the business owners/managers of the US shifting away from isolationism and reducing their donations to its supporting political organizations & politicians. America First as a organization died 7 December 1941 but ti was already a declining organization and movement as increasing numbers of US voters realized there was no future for a isolated US in a war torn and facist or imperialist world.

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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by OpanaPointer » 29 Dec 2022 19:25

The Committee to Defend America First officially disbanded on 8 December 1941.
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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 02 Jan 2023 21:59

OpanaPointer wrote:
29 Dec 2022 19:25
The Committee to Defend America First officially disbanded on 8 December 1941.
The organization was holding a rally in Pennsylvania when Pearl Harbor was attacked & the head of the organization was speaking when a aide came on stage and whispered the news to him. He finished the speech, then was given confirmation by other staff after he left the podium.


Its membership, leaders, and funding were showing a downward trend in the autumn of 1941 & long term weakness. Hannaford MacNider a key leader in the America First organization and a staunch opponent to Roosevelts policies had already become disillusioned with isolationism and submitted a resignation from his leadership position 4 Decmber 1941. He sought to be recommissioned as a officer in the US Army & was a successful battalion and regiment commander in the New Guinea & Philippines campaigns. One of the very few US Army officers to receive combat awards in both world wars.

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Re: political effects of a delayed start to WW2

Post by OpanaPointer » 02 Jan 2023 23:46

That was Gerald P. Nye, Senator from Wyoming, IIRC. He was the Senate's village idiot. Started hunting "British influence" in Hollywood and called hearings. They fizzled when the entire investigative board admitted to having not seen any of the movies they were railing about.
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