Wednesday 8 July 2015

Germany's Stalin and Russia's Hitler

Chapter 1: Europe's new chance?

After the so-called Great War Europe was pretty much everywhere in chaos. Many soldiers returned from the fronts, most didn't return at all and were for now in another place. Germany in particular was in a great state of chaos. The Emperor abdicated, as well as all the other monarchs in Germany, the population was alienated from the ex-elite and the politicians of left and right were totally upset. None of the war goals were met and everyone felt betrayed. On the 9th of November the evolution went further and two declarations of the Republic were made, one by Philipp Scheidemann who was a German social-democrat. The other proclamation was done by Karl Liebknecht, who hold extreme-left views. Karl Liebknecht wasn't however the only figure who would become important. Rosa Luxemburg was another key figure and both initially were comrades of Philipp Scheidemann? Later however their paths were interrupted as Liebknecht and Luxemburg didn't agree on the war. For them it was a purely imperialist war and nothing else.

Firstly however Scheidemann and his government were seen as legitimate one by the world. Liebknecht's idea of transforming Germany in a council republic was rejected. Nevertheless he and his followers didn't give up and continued their struggle. Germany had internal problems and there were always some street fights, between the jobless pro-monarchy soldiers, left-wing paramilitary, right-wing, etc. The left, especially the ones around Liebknecht were initially euphoric about the so-called Bolsheviki in Russia. During the months it became very unlikely that they would achieve something. Also in Hungary a certain man called Béla Kun tried to make big changes.
In 1919 more changes were to be seen in Germany especially. Without any Bolshevist threat from the East, the extreme right didn't become as important as in our timeline. Also Scheidemann would see other groups as threat and not the 'Bolshevist' as they became non-existent in Russia. Here in this alternate timeline, the left increased its support throughout the months. The Spartacist uprising in this case was more a different uprising of the extreme-right. The clash between the actual government and the groups around Liebknecht and Luxemburg came after the signature of the treaty of Versailles. Bavaria in April 1919 already became a socialist council state and an armed uprising against the governmental forces took place all across Germany. The extreme-left gathered around the KPD which was founded in January 1919.

The treaty of Versailles was seen as imperialist aggression and as purest form of capitalist exploitation. Germany had to pay a huge price for peace. However for many Germans this wasn't was slavery. They had to pay so much that their economy could only crash if nothing was done. Over the weeks the KPD could gain new members and many of them fought in the Rotfrontkämpferbund. For most countries this was seen as German problem and with the absence of Soviet Russia, they cared more about their own business and were tired of war. The Rotfrontkämpferbund had the immense advantage of a strong enthusiasm. Jews and ethnic minorities were also allowed, whereas nationalist or imperialist forces didn't have that advantage. Later in 1920 Scheidemann and his government abdicated as well and Liebknecht, Luxemburg and their KPD formed a new government, based a bit on the Bavarian model. Most of the country had to be put down with the newly formed Red Army. Also the internal struggle in the KPD became somewhat obvious especially when Liebknecht became sick. He saw Luxemburg as worthy successor, she had an immense prestige and was one of the key figure of the November revolution. However a shining star, Ernst Thälmann would cross these plans.

When Liebknecht died in 1924 the fight in the KPD was more open and many members were against Luxemburg and found that a woman couldn't lead a country, she was a capitalist spy and also Thälmann put pressure on many members as he was the general secretary and hold many personal information.  Luxemburg was in favour of an international revolution, whereas Thälmann favoured communism in one country and the slow but steady formation of a bloc, if the time was right. Hungary was already a potential ally. During congresses Luxemburg's position became isolated and she fled from Germany and went into exile. Thälmann had now all the buttons to keep the leadership in his own hands and he did so. Many people of the old guard ,,disappeared'' or had some ,,scandals'', accidents were common as well. Also many went to the KZ's who were primary established for the counter-revolutionaries, capitalists or imperial loyalists. Now in the end of the 20's old communists who firstly put the others in prison were also now there.

The year of 1934 marked another highlight in Thälmann's leadership. The old Rotfrontkämpferbund became somewhat defunct and he favoured now the Rothelme. The leader of this paramilitary group Willy Leow was arrested and convicted for counter-revolutionary activities and the planning of a (Rosa-)Luxemburgian terrorist organisation. Old generals were shot with Leow on the same date. Leow's last words were: ,,Für unser kommunistisches Vaterland'' and he showed the fist sign.
Thälmann became the undisputed and sole leader of the 'communist fatherland'...

Saturday 4 July 2015

Alternate World War 2

A communist Germany? A fascist Russia? All of that after World War 1, leading to a much different World War 2 and Cold War? If these questions seem interesting for you, catch a look into my new video and enjoy. Don't forget to comment, like and subscribe!