Crying Wolf by Steve Payne, Eric
Lipps, Eric Oppen & Stan Brin
says: what if Woodrow Wilson's ideas had framed the Treaty of
Versailles? Please note that the opinions expressed in this post do not
necessarily reflect the views of the author(s).
In 1919, a comprehensive
peace settlement was signed on this day in the Hall of Mirrors of the Palace
of Versailles; the signatories were the proletariat representatives of the
provisional socialist governments which had emerged from the Great War.
Naturally, the United States acted as the guarantor,
being the only great power to have emerged unscathed from the conflict.
Consequently, President Woodrow Wilson's proposals for self-determination
and a League of Nations would be central to the new framework for collective
America's declaration of neutrality at the outset of the war had in fact
proven unenforceable because both sides had attempted to starve each other
out with naval blockades. There could be no freedom of the high seas for
neutrals whilst the battle raged in the Atlantic between the Royal Navy
and the Kaiserliche Marine. And so during May 1915 America actually came
close to joining the war as a belligerent when a passenger ocean liner
owned by the Cunard Line had entered the war zone. However Captain von
Luckner of the steamship
SMS Seeadler chose not to sink the RMS
Lusitania, but instead to capture it. And the German Government was
therefore able to issue an unambigously worded official statement that the
Lusitania had been armed with guns, and had "large quantities of war
material" in her cargo.
the US Government made any form of involvement conditional upon the
belligerent's acceptance of the Fourteen Points proposed by President
Wilson. And during 1916, a settlement became a distinct possibility
because by then both sides were exhausted and only wanted to save
themselves. Emperor Karl Habsburg of Austria-Hungary issued a letter
seeking peace on the basis of a "status quo ante bellum" agreement, but
the initiative came to nought.
By 1918, Spanish Flu had decimated the continent of Europe, the monarchies
were overthrown and provisional governments sought to re-establish central
authority in their anarchic nations. Far-flung Empires were disgarded by
the impoverished new nations that could scarely control their own borders.
And yet Versailles would prove a false dawn. As many members of Congress
had warned, American's commitment to collective security dragged the US
into a never ending series of brush wars in the nineteen twenties and
thirties. And by the time Hitler set Europe on the road to war, America
had already withdrawn from the League of Nations.
says Herr Wolf was Adolf Hitler's nickname.
Other Contemporary Stories
Steve Payne, Eric Lipps, Eric Oppen & Stan Brin
Editor and Guest Historians of
Today in Alternate History, a Daily
Updating Blog of Important Events In History That Never Occurred Today.
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Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit
differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items
explore that possibility. Possibilities such as America becoming a Marxist
superpower, aliens influencing human history in the 18th century and Teddy
Roosevelt winning his 3rd term as president abound in this interesting