Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

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Futurist
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Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 13 Feb 2016 00:51

Historically speaking, I know that the U.S. acquired (either through peaceful means, such as the Louisiana Purchase--or through conquest, such as the Mexican Cession) a lot of additional territories in the 1800s which it then proceeded to use as Lebensraum (living space):

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Likewise, a victorious Germany in World War I (or in World War II, but I certainly don't want to go there) could have conquered territories such as Estonia, Livonia, and Courland and have used these territories as Lebensraum (living space) afterwards:

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After all, a victorious Germany could have encouraged the ethnic Germans in Russia to settle in the Baltic states as well as to encourage ethnic Germans from Germany proper to settle in cities and suburbs in the Baltic states. Plus, some German nationalists might have settled in the Baltic states in this scenario for nationalistic reasons; indeed, Estonia, Livonia, and Courland were previously controlled by the Teutonic Knights:

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Plus, Estonia, Livonia, and Courland combined probably only had a population of somewhere between 2.5 and 3.0 million and thus probably wouldn't have been too difficult for a victorious Germany to gradually demographically overwhelm (even without any expulsions of ethnic cleansing).

Anyway, what I am wondering is this--exactly which additional countries, if any, could have really acquired additional territories after 1800 and then used these territories on a large scale for Lebensraum (living space)?

Also, for the record, my extremely strong preference for this scenario would be to completely avoid things such as expulsions, ethnic cleansing, and genocide.

Anyway, any thoughts on this question and scenario of mine?
Last edited by Futurist on 13 Feb 2016 03:25, edited 4 times in total.

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 13 Feb 2016 02:24

Also, to clarify--I certainly oppose using force to conquer territories for Lebensraum (living space) due to the fact that it is a violation of the principle of self-determination. However, in spite of this, I am nevertheless extremely curious about this topic.

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 15 Feb 2016 04:03

In addition to this, for reference, here are world maps for 1815 and 1859-1860 for real life:

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 17 Feb 2016 06:27

Anyone?

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Stephen_Rynerson » 02 Apr 2016 16:14

Futurist wrote:Anyone?
China is the most obvious realistic instance I can think of where a country could have acquired "Lebensraum" through largely peaceful means -- had the Qing simply lifted restrictions on Han migration to Outer Mongolia and Tannu Tuva earlier, those territories would probably still be part of China today.

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 03 Apr 2016 03:14

Stephen_Rynerson wrote:
Futurist wrote:Anyone?
China is the most obvious realistic instance I can think of where a country could have acquired "Lebensraum" through largely peaceful means -- had the Qing simply lifted restrictions on Han migration to Outer Mongolia and Tannu Tuva earlier, those territories would probably still be part of China today.
Very good point! :) Also, though, couldn't China have likewise used Outer Manchuria as Lebensraum if the Qing Chinese government would have allowed ethnic large-scale Chinese settlement in Outer Manchuria starting from a sufficiently early point in time?
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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 03 Apr 2016 03:18

Also, though, could Russia (as in, a Russia that wouldn't have federalized along ethnic lines until much later) have realistically caused large parts of Kazakhstan and/or large parts of "Novorossiya" to acquire a Russian-majority population by the early 21st century?

Any thoughts on this?

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Stephen_Rynerson » 03 Apr 2016 04:57

Futurist wrote:
Stephen_Rynerson wrote:
Futurist wrote:Anyone?
China is the most obvious realistic instance I can think of where a country could have acquired "Lebensraum" through largely peaceful means -- had the Qing simply lifted restrictions on Han migration to Outer Mongolia and Tannu Tuva earlier, those territories would probably still be part of China today.
Very good point! :) Also, though, couldn't China have likewise used Outer Manchuria as Lebensraum if the Qing Chinese government would have allowed ethnic large-scale Chinese settlement in Outer Manchuria starting from a sufficiently early point in time?
Probably, but that's a closer question if the restrictions are only lifted post-1800 (which is how I read your hypothetical). The Qing effectively lost influence over Outer Manchuria by the 1850s, and I don't know if there could have realistically been enough Han migration between 1800 to 1850 to sufficiently colonize the territory, since lifting the migration restrictions on Outer Manchuria would have effectively required lifting the migration restrictions on Inner Manchuria too (which in real life weren't lifted until the 1860s). It's possible that Inner Manchuria might have absorbed so many of the migrants before reaching Outer Manchuria that the demographics of the latter territory wouldn't have changed enough to deter Russian expansionism. (The focus of my research is on Republican era China, and my knowledge of earlier periods isn't nearly as fleshed out.)

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Stephen_Rynerson » 03 Apr 2016 05:08

Futurist wrote:Also, though, could Russia (as in, a Russia that wouldn't have federalized along ethnic lines until much later) have realistically caused large parts of Kazakhstan and/or large parts of "Novorossiya" to acquire a Russian-majority population by the early 21st century?
Unfortunately, I'm not as familiar with the history of Russian expansionism, so I'm less sure about that one. I will say though that would probably would have been more challenging relative to the Chinese case simply because, as far as I'm aware, ethnic Russians never had anywhere near the degree of numerical advantage over the ethnic populations on their periphery that the Han did. In 1900, for example, if just one-half of one percent of the Han population of "China proper" had migrated to Outer Mongolia, it would have made the ethnic Mongolians a minority in the territory. I don't think the Russians ever had that degree of advantage over either the Kazakhs or Ukrainians.

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 03 Apr 2016 21:21

Stephen_Rynerson wrote:
Futurist wrote:Also, though, could Russia (as in, a Russia that wouldn't have federalized along ethnic lines until much later) have realistically caused large parts of Kazakhstan and/or large parts of "Novorossiya" to acquire a Russian-majority population by the early 21st century?
Unfortunately, I'm not as familiar with the history of Russian expansionism, so I'm less sure about that one. I will say though that would probably would have been more challenging relative to the Chinese case simply because, as far as I'm aware, ethnic Russians never had anywhere near the degree of numerical advantage over the ethnic populations on their periphery that the Han did. In 1900, for example, if just one-half of one percent of the Han population of "China proper" had migrated to Outer Mongolia, it would have made the ethnic Mongolians a minority in the territory. I don't think the Russians ever had that degree of advantage over either the Kazakhs or Ukrainians.
That kind of advantage? No, probably not. However, ethnic Russians do appear to have had a more than 30 to 1 population advantage over ethnic Kazakhs in the Soviet Union back in 1939:

http://demoscope.ru/weekly/ssp/sng_nac_39.php

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 06 Apr 2016 23:25

Futurist wrote:
Stephen_Rynerson wrote:
Futurist wrote:Also, though, could Russia (as in, a Russia that wouldn't have federalized along ethnic lines until much later) have realistically caused large parts of Kazakhstan and/or large parts of "Novorossiya" to acquire a Russian-majority population by the early 21st century?
Unfortunately, I'm not as familiar with the history of Russian expansionism, so I'm less sure about that one. I will say though that would probably would have been more challenging relative to the Chinese case simply because, as far as I'm aware, ethnic Russians never had anywhere near the degree of numerical advantage over the ethnic populations on their periphery that the Han did. In 1900, for example, if just one-half of one percent of the Han population of "China proper" had migrated to Outer Mongolia, it would have made the ethnic Mongolians a minority in the territory. I don't think the Russians ever had that degree of advantage over either the Kazakhs or Ukrainians.
That kind of advantage? No, probably not. However, ethnic Russians do appear to have had a more than 30 to 1 population advantage over ethnic Kazakhs in the Soviet Union back in 1939:

http://demoscope.ru/weekly/ssp/sng_nac_39.php
Indeed, out of the 11 titular Soviet ethnic groups back in 1939, only the ethnic Ukrainians made up 6% or more of the total ethnic Russian population in the Soviet Union during this time:

Russians: 99,591,520

Ukrainians: 28,111,007

Belarusians: 5,275,393

Georgians: 2,249,636

Azerbaijanis: 2,275,678

Armenians: 2,152,860

Uzbeks: 4,845,140

Turkmens: 812,404

Tajiks: 1,229,170

Kazakhs: 3,100,949

Kirghiz: 884,615

Indeed, based on the data above, it appears that all of the Central Asian SSRs other than the Uzbek SSR were especially ripe for large-scale ethnic Russian colonization.

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by wm » 12 Apr 2016 22:39

Futurist wrote:After all, a victorious Germany could have encouraged the ethnic Germans in Russia to settle in the Baltic states as well as to encourage ethnic Germans from Germany proper to settle in cities and suburbs in the Baltic states.
The problem is the Germans were facing de-Germanisation of their eastern provinces - because Germans didn't want to live there. They wouldn't like the life in the Baltic states even more.

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 17 Apr 2016 22:26

wm wrote:
Futurist wrote:After all, a victorious Germany could have encouraged the ethnic Germans in Russia to settle in the Baltic states as well as to encourage ethnic Germans from Germany proper to settle in cities and suburbs in the Baltic states.
The problem is the Germans were facing de-Germanisation of their eastern provinces - because Germans didn't want to live there. They wouldn't like the life in the Baltic states even more.
Two points:

1. Couldn't Germany have successfully encouraged ethnic Germans from Russia and maybe from certain parts of Austria-Hungary to settle in the Baltic states?

2. In spite of the Ostflucht, the population of large cities in eastern Germany (such as Konigsberg) actually significantly increased between 1875 and 1910: http://germanhistorydocs.ghi-dc.org/sub ... ent_id=644

Thus, why exactly couldn't many ethnic Germans (both from Germany proper and from other countries, such as Russia) have settled in large cities (such as Riga) in the Baltic states in the decades after a German victory in World War I?

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 17 Apr 2016 23:26

Futurist wrote:
wm wrote:
Futurist wrote:After all, a victorious Germany could have encouraged the ethnic Germans in Russia to settle in the Baltic states as well as to encourage ethnic Germans from Germany proper to settle in cities and suburbs in the Baltic states.
The problem is the Germans were facing de-Germanisation of their eastern provinces - because Germans didn't want to live there. They wouldn't like the life in the Baltic states even more.
Two points:

1. Couldn't Germany have successfully encouraged ethnic Germans from Russia and maybe from certain parts of Austria-Hungary to settle in the Baltic states?

2. In spite of the Ostflucht, the population of large cities in eastern Germany (such as Konigsberg) actually significantly increased between 1875 and 1910: http://germanhistorydocs.ghi-dc.org/sub ... ent_id=644

Thus, why exactly couldn't many ethnic Germans (both from Germany proper and from other countries, such as Russia) have settled in large cities (such as Riga) in the Baltic states in the decades after a German victory in World War I?
Indeed, both Riga and Tallinn (Reval) look like suitable places to create a massive urban metropolis there if enough people will move and (permanently) settle there. After all, there will certainly be enough living space (Lebensraum) in these two places for this.

However, the creation of such massive urban metropolises would probably require both Riga and Tallinn (Reval) to become extremely industrialized (similar to, say, New York City, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and/or San Diego in the U.S. in the late 20th and early 21st centuries in real life). Indeed, would Germany have both the necessary political will and the necessary finances to make both Riga and Tallinn (Reval) extremely industrialized in the decades after a German victory in World War I?

Indeed, any thoughts on this?

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Re: Additional *realistic* post-1800 cases of nations acquiring Lebensraum (living space)?

Post by Futurist » 18 Apr 2016 01:41

Also, I would like to point out that there certainly is a difference between agrarian-style Lebensraum (as was the case in, say, the U.S. during the 19th century) and suburban-style Lebensraum which is based on metropolitan areas and megapolises (as was the case in, say, the U.S. during the 20th and 21st centuries). Indeed, a German attempt to colonize Latvia and Estonia after a German victory in World War I would have probably been much more likely to be successful if Germany would have focused on getting ethnic Germans to settle in urban and suburban areas in Latvia and Estonia rather than in rural areas in Latvia and Estonia. Heck, imagine the eventual creation of megapolises such as these, but in Latvia and Estonia:

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In addition to this, though, a great way for a victorious Germany to strengthen its hold on Latvia and Estonia would probably be to encourage large-scale immigration from other European countries into Latvia and Estonia (such as by making immigration to both Latvia and Estonia much easier than immigration to Germany proper). That way, Germany would be able to further dilute the ethnic demographics of the Baltic states and play off various non-German ethnic groups in Latvia and Estonia against each other (as well as perhaps to gradually Germanize some of these non-Germans in Latvia and Estonia; after all, becoming Germanized might very well mean having greater economic opportunities). Indeed, such a move on Germany's part would probably be somewhat similar to what the U.S. government did in the 19th and early 20th century when it allowed millions or even tens of millions of White Europeans to immigrate to the U.S. and to help settle various sparely populated territories in the U.S. :)

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