Monthly Question August 2014

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This month's question is:

How do you think World War I could have been prevented?

Last month's question was:

If you were the King of England during the American Revolution, would you have surrendered like the actual King decided to do or would you have fought to the last man?

The most popular answer was:

Possible outcomes of a victory by Cornwallis include...

Prolonged war, followed by American victory...

  • France is in big trouble; the country was bankrupted after the real-world war alone (resulting in the French Revolution), but a prolonged war would force the country to re-prioritise, or be economically decimated. This would have a big effect on Europe, due to the impact of the French Revolution and ensuing French Empire under Napoleon.
  • Spain would still really hate Britain.
  • All sides (especially France, Britain and the USA) would be exhausted from the prolonged fighting - this could give Spain a chance to take places like Minorca and Gibraltar from Britain (or maybe not; Britain had a pretty good track record of staving off the Spanish from those places).
  • Other European Empires such as Portugal might even use the above to take advantage of the other Empires to win a slightly more prominant place in history.
  • The worsened situation in the young USA could result in it becoming a very different country. It might even fail or separate into smaller nations; if this is not the case, the US may not achieve its 'Manifest Destiny' and reach the Pacific - we may well have a Mexico which stretches up to Canada (or, if Spain and Britain have a big war in that region, even a Canada which reaches down to Mexico, or something in between).
  • On that note, would the USA still want to purchase Louisiana (a huge region in those days)? Or would there be another buyer? Maybe the people of Louisiana would manage to buy their own sovereignty?! Of course, this assumes that Spain would still retain Louisiana, sell it to France, and France (under Napoleon in the real world) still decides to sell it to somebody else.
  • The short-lived Vermont Republic ends up joining Canada due to a less attractive USA.
  • ^Airships will deinitely be the primary form of transport.^

I should note that it's possible that I'm overestimating the impact of such a prolonged war, as the European powers in those days were often used to fighting several different wars around the world at once (especially Britain). Or perhaps I'm wrong altogether and history will go in a different direction? Maybe the battle wasn't actually that crucial, and Britain was already destined to lose? Maybe not exciting alternate history, but entirely likely

Britian wins and the USA is re-annexed...

  • Important revolutionaries would be in a lot of trouble, likely executed; this would be like a mirror image of the treatment of loyalists after the real-life American Revolutionary War (some might escape to the Spanish Empire for protection, or more likely to their allies in the French Empire - you might even go as far to say that this may affect the outcome of the French Revolution).
  • It is possible that the British Empire would not colonise Australia (which was established as a replacement territory). However, this may be offset in the future by the increased manpower, which might allow the British Empire to grab more land in the Scramble for Africa. In this case, it would be unlikely that Australians will speak English.
  • There would be no American Civil War and slavery would not be abolished in 1865. Slavery would instead have been abolished decades earlier in accordance with the Slavery Abolition Act of 1833.
  • The British Empire was surprisingly sympathetic toward the Native Americans (relatively speaking), in fact, the British Proclamation Line, marking out native territories west of the colonies, was one of the reasons for revolution. Many Native traibes sided with the British during the American Revolutionary War. It's possible that Native Americans would therefore feature more in American history, but not hugely. A good predictor for what things might be like is the experiences of the First Nation People in Canada.
  • I couldn't speculate with confidence on how this would affect the more contemporary World Wars and Cold War, though, if they are invented at all, nuclear weapons would probably be developed by the British, as even in the real world the first nuclear weapons project was British (Tube Alloys, which evolved into the Manhatten Project when the US joined - Tube Alloys had to be re-started after the Manhatten Project was a success, as things went badly diplomatically between the UK and US).
  • ^Airships will still definitely be the primary form of transport.^

What definitely won't happen...

  • Both strong scientific nations, American drive and ingenuity combined with British imperial power causes a burst of technological development never seen before in human history. The world is quickly subsumed by the British Empire, which invents space travel and FTL, terraforms Mars and begins colonising surrounding solar systems; in honour of the victory at the Siege of Yorktown which made all of this possible, officers in the Interstellar Royal Navy still wear traditional 18th century officers' uniform and drink lots of tea. Steampunk has been the latest fashion for the last few centuries now. Recently, the British Empire has clashed with powerful extraterrestrial adversaries, leading to all-out war. Only the crew of the flagship of the Interstellar Royal Navy, HMS Cornwallis, can prevent the fall of the Empire, and along with it, humanity, as they set off on an epic adventure in order to... blah, blah, blah....
  • Don't do it. This is just tacky, unless you're a really good writer with a PhD in Suspension of Disbelief.
  • However, ^airships will probably still be the main form of transport^ - this is alternate history, after all.
Mr.Robbo(Message WallBlog)

Get answering!

WikiBuilder1147 (Infinite HistoriesGalactic CruciblesThe Sims WikiMemory AlphaMemory GammaWhy I'm here in the first place) 02:44, July 29, 2014 (UTC)

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