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Old March 1st, 2018, 02:17 PM   #1
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When Japan invades China in 1937, Hitler breaks off relations


OTL
Germany had helped China for years to build a Mauser factory, a RR network, train elite troops, etc, The massive Chinese army could be invaluable against the USSR with a small LW force (slightly larger than the Condor Legion).

Chiang was undertaking a major campaign against the weak Communists, which was spoiled by Japanese invasion and China started losing troops ever faster. So Japan set back China several years. Despite a non agression pact with China, Stalin send forces to occupy Xin Jiang, depriving Chiang of a whole province and causing Chinese casualties, thus weakening Chiang also and strengthening the Communists.

The Japanese invasion was not planned by the armed forces high commands, but initiated by a few rowue officers in Manchuria. The governemnt and high command make the incredible mistake of supplying and reinforcing the invasion, instead of court marshaling the officers and apologizing to China and the rest of the world. The invasion caused heavy casualties and major expenses and it ruined Japan's standing in the league of nations (it withdrew).

ATL
When Hitler hears of the Japanese invasion, he immediately severs relations with Japan.
Hitler urges Stalin to invade Manchuria, S Sakhalin, etc, while the IJA is heavily engaged in China. The small IJA simply cannot sustain heavy losses against the massive Chinese and Soviet armies simultaneously. The small Japanese economy simply cannot support war against 2 colossi.

The invasion of Manchuria will weaken Japanese forces in China and deprive Japan of minerals, farmland, labor force, industry, etc, which it is using to expand. If Japan defeats China, it will have huge resources to invade the USSR. Recovering territory lost by Russia shamefully to Japan in 1905 (for lack of a RR line), will boost Stalin's prestige and Soviet economy and morale. The invasion of Manchuria can show the superiority of Soviet armor, aviation and tactics over Japanese counterparts. Marshal Tukhacheski can shine and allow his men to acquire invaluable experience against a small, obsolete army, thinly spread along a huge border with Mongolia, the USSR and China.

In contrast, If Japan loses Manchuria and must withdraw from China, it will remain a poor, densely populated island nation with little farmland, relying on food imports.

Last edited by ruthenium; March 1st, 2018 at 02:26 PM.
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Old March 1st, 2018, 03:50 PM   #2

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So in this scenario the USSR directly or indirectly provides massive aid to China(I assume Mao) to fight Japan? Interesting.
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Old March 3rd, 2018, 06:46 PM   #3
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first off what year is the pod.
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Old March 4th, 2018, 02:39 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by zincwarrior View Post
So in this scenario the USSR directly or indirectly provides massive aid to China(I assume Mao) to fight Japan? Interesting.
in the real world, soviet union indeed provided massive aid to china (mainly to KMT) (in fact, more than US)
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Old March 4th, 2018, 02:59 AM   #5
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soviet union in the 1930s were doing nothing but preparing for the war against german in the long term, and against british in the short term. thus it would never open fire to japan until its west were safe.

meanwhile, japan attacked soviet union forces in the current mongolia lands in 1939. the attack was a failure, though it caused an almost equal loss to the soviet union side. this incident makes soviet union to feel satisfied being free from deep war status with japan.
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Old March 4th, 2018, 03:16 AM   #6
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in the real world, invasion against china is very much the basic national policy of japan. the different opinions only lie on the exact invasion time window. japanese high command would order the invasion sooner or later.
the war for the northeastern china did not cause significant loss to japan.

soviet union's attack incident in xinjiang did not hurt china as a whole or jiang in person. it was a war of warlords. one warlord borrowed soviet union force to defeat another. jaing's power simply was not in xinjiang at this time. thus it did not hurt jiang. neither side of the warlords like ccp, thus the xinjiang incident also did not help ccp.
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Old March 4th, 2018, 02:48 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by heylouis View Post
soviet union in the 1930s were doing nothing but preparing for the war against german in the long term, and against british in the short term. thus it would never open fire to japan until its west were safe.

meanwhile, japan attacked soviet union forces in the current mongolia lands in 1939. the attack was a failure, though it caused an almost equal loss to the soviet union side. this incident makes soviet union to feel satisfied being free from deep war status with japan.
In 1937 Germany was very much weaker than the USSR. The best way to prepare for eventual war with Germany is to test your forces, equipment and tactics and to acquire invaluable esperience fighting offensively a small country, with a huge colony, defended by a small army. which is heavily engaged with the huge Chinese army. Moreover, expelling Japan from the continent will allow Stalin to redeploy his strong, now experienced forces from the far east to the west. Instead of leaving them there well equipped and utterly idle throughout a long war with Germany.

OTL Stalin was paranoid about the Japanese-Polish intelligence sharing (read "the bloodlands" and feared a simultaneous attack by them. He kept strong forces along the Manchurian border, etc,

OTL The first Japanese-Soviet incident was at the Korean border in 1938.

OTL during Barbarossa Stalin kept massive forces idle, facing the IJA. Even after Sorge reported that Japan would not invade the USSR, Stalin deployed about 1,000 tanks and planes and a 1/2 million troops to Moscow during Typhoon (saving Moscow), but still left 2,000 tanks and a massive force facing Japan!

ATL Stalin is not stupid, he uses the golden opportunity to test and improve his formidable forces (instead of beheading the red army, by killing or imprisoning. the brightest, most experienced officers). The whole world condemned Japanese aggresion, so this is a golden opportunity also for the USSR to become more popular and less isolated. Win-win scenario.

ATL Hitler offers Stalin a mutual assistance pact against Polish aggression and a truce in Spain. He suggests a secret protocole stating German invasion of Lithuania in 1938 and half of Poland in 1939 and simultaneous Soviet invasion of Estonia and Latvia in 1938 and half of Poland in 1939.

He also suggests that both Germany and the USSR abandon the Spanish civil war, for more fruitful operations. If Stalin wants German cooperation against Japan, Hitler offers to deploy immediately German forces in Spain (and additonal forces if requested) to Manchuria through the USSR.
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Old March 4th, 2018, 02:59 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by heylouis View Post
in the real world, invasion against china is very much the basic national policy of japan. the different opinions only lie on the exact invasion time window. japanese high command would order the invasion sooner or later.
the war for the northeastern china did not cause significant loss to japan.

soviet union's attack incident in xinjiang did not hurt china as a whole or jiang in person. it was a war of warlords. one warlord borrowed soviet union force to defeat another. jaing's power simply was not in xinjiang at this time. thus it did not hurt jiang. neither side of the warlords like ccp, thus the xinjiang incident also did not help ccp.
Japan could have easily invaded and defeated China, in a strong, well planned operation: Multiple landings along the whole coast (to sever Chiang's forces' communications, supply and reinforcement lines, etc, and rapidly advancing along the largest rivers, RR, etc, to the interiro, etc,
The rogue officers invaded China at the worst possible time and in the most stupid possible way: attacking from one end and allowing Chiang to withdraw his huge for years in a huge territory, inflicting the small IJA great casualties and causing an unwinnable, long war (the small Japanese economy could not support long years of war, importing oil, scrap iron, rubber, etc,), Supporting the rogue officers' blunder were the worst Japanese decision in the 1930s. The second worst decision was fighting the USSR twice over stupid border discrepancies. Of course the worst blunder in Japanese history was attacking PH and the PI, instead of going for the west coast of the Americas.
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Old March 4th, 2018, 03:05 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by heylouis View Post
in the real world, invasion against china is very much the basic national policy of japan. the different opinions only lie on the exact invasion time window. japanese high command would order the invasion sooner or later.
the war for the northeastern china did not cause significant loss to japan.

soviet union's attack incident in xinjiang did not hurt china as a whole or jiang in person. it was a war of warlords. one warlord borrowed soviet union force to defeat another. jaing's power simply was not in xinjiang at this time. thus it did not hurt jiang. neither side of the warlords like ccp, thus the xinjiang incident also did not help ccp.
Chiang's Muslim divisions fought very well and were defeated by Soviet planes, armor, artillery, experienced White Russian mercenaries fighting for Stalin and mostly because of extensive use of poison gas.
The heavy casualties of those Muslim forces and of prestige, by losing a territory to foreign forces and the loss of ressources and population of Xin Jiang, certainly did not help Chiang against the Communists or the Japanese.
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Old March 4th, 2018, 07:08 PM   #10
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Chiang's Muslim divisions fought very well and were defeated by Soviet planes, armor, artillery, experienced White Russian mercenaries fighting for Stalin and mostly because of extensive use of poison gas.
The heavy casualties of those Muslim forces and of prestige, by losing a territory to foreign forces and the loss of ressources and population of Xin Jiang, certainly did not help Chiang against the Communists or the Japanese.
jiang does not have muslim divisions.
soviet union fought in alliance with the warlord sheng shicai, against the warlord ma zhongying. the war has absolutely no connection with ccp and it did not weaken jiang because jiang had no power in xinjinag at that time.
the territory was not lost to soviet union, too.

japan certainly would not landing along the coast. japanese army, no matter how strong and how large, cannot cover the long chinese coast. it is simple math.

soviet union defeated japanese in the current mongolia lands, but with heavy loss too. that means soviet union is not ready tp crash japan at that moment, especially when it had a more dangerous situation in the west.
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