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Großdeutsches Reich
Greater German Reich

800px-Flag of Nazi Germany (1933-1945).svg 800px-Reichsadler der Deutsches Reich (1933–1945).svg
Flag National Insignia

Motto
"Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Führer."
One People, one Reich, one Leader.

Anthem
"Das Lied der Deutschen"
and the
"Horst-Wessel-Lied"

Nazi Germany Map

Capital

Largest city
Berlin

Berlin

Official languages German

Government
- Eternal Führer
- Reich President
- Reich Chancellor
National Socialist State
Adolf Hitler
Hartmut Lossberg
Wihelm Franz

Establishment
- Machtergreifung
- Gleichschaltung
- Anschluss

30 January 1933
27 February 1933
13 March 1938

Area
- Total

- Water (%)

x km2
x sq mi
x

Population
- July 2007 est.

350 million (2010 estimate)

GDP
- Total
- Per capita
2006 estimate
$4.815 Trillion
$24,075

Gini 56

HDI 0.879

Currency Euro (EUR)

Time zone
- Summer (BST)
UTC+1
(UTC+2)

Internet TLD .de

Calling code +49

The Greater German Reich is a European state ruled by the National Socialist German Workers Party consisting of the German Reich, the General Government of Poland, the Reich Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, the Reich Commissariat of Ostland, the Reich Commissariat of the Ukraine, and the Reich Protectorate of Palestine. It is a founding member of the European Union. Germany is a totalitarian dictatorship ruled by the National Socialist German Workers Party. It is bordered by Denmark, Holland, Belgium, France, Switzerland, Italy, Croatia, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania, and Russia. German Palestine borders the Suez Canal Territory, Jordan, Syria, and Greater Lebanon.

The Greater German Reich is sometimes called the Third Reich. This follows from the Holy Roman Empire (the First Reich), and Imperial Germany ruled by the Hohenzollerns (the Second Reich).

HistoryEdit

Rise of National SocialismEdit

On 30 January 1933 Adolf Hitler was appointed chancellor of Germany by Hindenburg after attempts by General Kurt von Schleicher to form a viable government failed (the Machtergreifung). Von Schleicher was hoping he could control Hitler by becoming vice chancellor and also keeping the Nazis a minority in the cabinet. Hindenburg was put under pressure by Hitler through his son Oskar von Hindenburg, as well as intrigue from former Chancellor Franz von Papen, leader of the Catholic Centre Party, whose politics were dictated in part by his desire to combat communism. Even though the Nazis had gained the largest share of the popular vote in the two Reichstag general elections of 1932, they had no majority of their own, and just a slim majority in parliament with their Papen-proposed Nationalist DNVP-NSDAP coalition. This coalition ruled through accepted continuance of the Presidential decree, issued under Article 48 of the 1919 Weimar constitution.

The National Socialist treatment of the Jews in the early months of 1933 marked the first step in a longer-term process of removing them from German society. This plan was at the core of Adolf Hitler's "cultural revolution".

The new government installed a totalitarian dictatorship in a series of measures in quick succession. On the night of 27 February 1933 the Reichstag building was set on fire and Dutch council communist Marinus van der Lubbe was found inside the building. He was arrested and charged with starting the blaze. The event had an immediate effect on thousands of anarchists, socialists and communists throughout the Reich, many of whom were sent to the Dachau concentration camp. The unnerved public worried that the fire had been a signal meant to initiate the communist revolution, and the Nazis found the event to be of immeasurable value in getting rid of potential insurgents. The event was quickly followed by the Reichstag Fire Decree, rescinding habeas corpus and other civil liberties.

The Enabling Act was passed in March 1933, with 444 votes in favour, against 94 of the remaining Social Democrats. The act gave the government (and thus effectively the Nazi Party) legislative powers and also authorized it to deviate from the provisions of the constitution for four years. In effect, Hitler had seized dictatorial powers.

Over the next year, the National Socialist Party ruthlessly eliminated all opposition. The Communists had already been banned before the passage of the Enabling Act. The Social Democrats (SPD), despite efforts to appease Hitler, were banned in June. In June and July, the Nationalists (DNVP), People's Party (DVP) and State Party (DStP) were forced to disband. The remaining Catholic Centre Party, at Papen's urging, disbanded itself on 5 July 1933 after guarantees over Catholic education and youth groups. On 14 July 1933 Germany was officially declared a one-party state.

Symbols of the Weimar Republic, including the black-red-gold flag, were abolished by the new regime which adopted both new and old imperial symbolism to represent the dual nature of the imperialist-Nazi regime of 1933. The old imperial black-white-red tricolour, almost completely abandoned during the Weimar Republic, was restored as one of Germany's two officially legal national flags. The other official national flag was the swastika flag of the Nazi party. It became the sole national flag in 1935. The national anthem continued to be "Deutschland über Alles" (also known as the "Deutschlandlied") except that the Nazis customarily used just the first verse and appended to it the "Horst-Wessel-Lied" accompanied by the so-called Hitler salute.

Further consolidation of power was achieved on 30 January 1934 with the Gesetz über den Neuaufbau des Reichs (Act to rebuild the Reich). The act changed the highly decentralized federal Germany of the Weimar era into a centralized state. It disbanded state parliaments, transferring sovereign rights of the states to the Reich central government and put the state administrations under the control of the Reich administration. This process had actually begun soon after the passage of the Enabling Act, when all state governments were thrown out of office and replaced by Reich governors (German: Reichsstatthalter). Further laws ended any autonomy in local government. Mayors of cities and towns with less than 100,000 people were appointed by the governors, while the Interior Minister appointed the mayors of all cities with more than 100,000 people. In the case of Berlin and Hamburg (and after 1938, Vienna), Hitler reserved the right to personally appoint the mayors.

In the spring of 1934, only the army remained independent from Nazi control. The German Army had traditionally been separated from the government and somewhat of an entity of its own. The Nazi paramilitary SA expected top positions in the new power structure. The Reichswehr feared Röhm's ambition to absorb the army into the SA under his own leadership. Röhm also aimed to launch the socialist "second revolution" to complement the nationalist revolution which had occurred with the ascendance of Hitler. Röhm and leaders of the SA wanted the regime to follow through its promise of enacting socialist legislation for Aryan Germans.

Wanting to preserve good relations with the army, certain politicians and the major industries (who were weary of more political violence erupting from the SA), Hitler initiated the violent "Night of the Long Knives" on 30 June 1934. This was a purge of the leadership ranks of Röhm's SA as well as hard-left Nazis (Strasserists), and other political enemies, carried out by the SS and the Gestapo.

At Hindenburg's death on 2 August 1934 the Nazi-controlled Reichstag merged the offices of Reichspräsident and Reichskanzler and reinstalled Hitler with the new title Führer und Reichskanzler. Until the death of Hindenburg, the army did not follow Hitler, partly because the paramilitary SA was much larger than the German Army (limited to 100,000 by the Treaty of Versailles) and because the leaders of the SA sought to merge the army into itself and to launch the socialist "second revolution." The murder of Ernst Röhm and the leadership of the SA, assured the army of its position. Hitler further promised expansions of the German military which brought friendlier relations between him and the Reichswehr. The death of Hindenburg brought the requirement of all soldiers' to take an oath of allegiance to obey Hitler alone and not the Reich or constitution of Germany.

The Nazis thereafter proceeded to scrap their official alliance with the conservative nationalists and began to introduce Nazi ideology and Nazi symbolism into all major aspects of life in Germany. Schoolbooks were either rewritten or replaced and schoolteachers who did not support Nazification of the curriculum were fired.

The inception of the Gestapo, police acting outside of any civil authority, highlighted the Nazis' intention to use powerful, coercive means to directly control German society. An army, estimated to be of about 100,000, spies and informants operated throughout Germany, reporting to Nazi officials the activities of any critics or dissenters. Most ordinary Germans, happy with the improving economy and better standard of living, remained obedient and quiet, but many political opponents, especially communists and Marxist or international socialists, were reported by omnipresent eavesdropping spies and put in prison camps where many were tortured and killed. It is estimated that tens of thousands of political victims died or disappeared in the first few years of Nazi rule.

Between 1933 and 1945 more than 3 million Germans had been in concentration camps or prison for political reasons. Tens of thousands of Germans were killed for one or another form of resistance. Between 1933 and 1945 Special Courts killed 12,000 Germans, courts martial killed 25,000 German soldiers, and 'regular' justice killed 40,000 Germans. Many of these Germans were part of the government civil or military service, a circumstance which enabled them to engage in subversion and conspiracy while involved, marginally or significantly, in the government's policies."

From 1936 to 1939, the Nazis embarked on a series of peaceful territorial expansions. First, the coal-mining region of the Saar voted for return to the Reich. Then the Army marched into the Rhineland to no opposition. Anschluss with Austria was also concluded easily with the colussion of local Nazis. The Sudetenland of Czechoslovakia was delivered up by France and Britain at the Munich Conference. After bullying Czech President Hacha into line, Hitler moved into the remainder of Czechslovakia (allowing Slovakia to break away to form an independent state).

World War II in EuropeEdit

The next territory was the Danzig and the Polish Corridor, between the main part of Germany, and East Prussia. Poland refused to give in, and Britain and France stated that they would declare war to guarantee Poland's borders. The Nazis signed a pact with the USSR, and on the 1st of September 1939 the Nazis invaded Poland. Over the next five years, the fortunes of the war were heavily in Germany's favour, then began to swing back with German defeats at Volgograd, and El Alamein (and North Africa in general). In late 1943, the Allies invaded continental Europe, moving into Italy, which changed sides.

The Allies had spent years preparing another invasion of the continent. They intended to attack across the English Channel into France.

Ending the WarEdit

On the 6th of June, 1944, the Allies invaded France. Field Marshal Rommel, acting on his own, mobilised every German unit that could be mobilised, and counterattacked. Though German losses were heavy, the invaders' losses were worse. The Allied force had failed to get more than five miles from the shoreline. On the next day, General Eisenhower withdrew his forces, and resigned. Churchill and Roosevelt planned to re-group and invade in summer 1945. Others had different ideas. In Britain, Churchill lost the confidence of the House of Commons, and was replaced by Lord Halifax, while in the United States, Joseph Kennedy won on a platform of "Peace with Germany, Victory over Japan in 1945!".

A quick by-election victory puts Halifax into the Commons. Halifax and Kennedy agree on Peace with Germany, but Halifax wants peace with Japan as well (in return for the withdrawal of Japanese forces from British colonies). This was met with violent disagreement from Australia, Canada and New Zealand, which vowed separately that they will continue fighting Japan. In the event, the British decided to fight on against Japan. In Stockholm, an Armistice between the British Empire, the United States, and Germany was signed in March 1945.

Germany transfered several million men to the Eastern Front. Some of them were used to halt the Russian advance, while others (plus new recruits) are refitted behind the lines. Both the German atomic bomb, and strategic bomber projects had breakthroughs in late 1945.

In June 1946, Germany announced that it has a new weapon of terrible power, the ultimate miracle weapon. On 14 October 1946, the Germans launch a nuclear strike with six nuclear weapons. Their bombers strike Russian forces at the front, industrial targets in the Urals, and Stalingrad with nuclear weapons. Two bombs hit Russian forces in Poland, three hit industrial targets in the Urals, and one destroys Stalingrad, the site of Germany's greatest defeat.

Shortly after, a massive German offensive was launched. The aim was to grab as much territory as possible before the onset of Winter. The offensive went through the gap in Russian lines. The shock of the nuclear attacks affects the Russians more than the destruction. The Soviets failed to contain the offensive, and several divisions were cut off and destroyed. Hitler was elated, this echoed the successes of 1941. The radiation casualties were covered up (most were euthanased in secret hospitals).

Hitler even talked of taking Moscow by Christmas 1946! The Russian Army had other ideas, they intend to conquer Moscow themselves. The USSR's Generals took the hint of the German nuclear attacks. They were convinced that Germany had enough bombs to completely destroy Russia (in fact the initial German nuclear bomb production run was eight, including one test, and six used in the October attack). On 7 November 1946 (the 29th anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution), STAVKA put its plan into action. Forces loyal to Zhukov lock down Moscow and occupy the Kremlin, arresting the Politburo. Stalin, Voroshilov, and several other high leaders were killed. Beria was executed on the spot and Konev made head of the NKVD. Zhukov declared himself head of the Interim Council of State and immediately requested an armistice from the Germans. A treaty was concluded and signed in January. One of the more important clauses of this treaty was the return to Germany of all communist party members staying in Russia. Since the new Russian administration was keen to get rid of all communists (indeed, thousands of CPSU officials were shot out of hand), Zhukov was only too happy to turn these foreign communists over to the Nazis. Some were eliminated, most served a few years in a concentration camp, before being released. Some even joined the NSDAP, and became ardent Nazis.

Later, Russia became a monarchy under Emperor Vladimir Cyrillovich. There was some communist partisan activity (on both the German and Soviet sides of the cease-fire lines), but it was eventually suppressed. In late 1947/1948, Zhukov and the ruling junta announced that they intend to draft a new constitution for Russia, producing a constitution that restored the empire but guaranteed the population the same civil rights as the 1934 Soviet Constitution and also promised to not fundamentally upset the economic order, i.e., there would be no return to the era of noble power.

Setting the Post War StageEdit

After the Soviets gave in, Halifax’s parliament (by now consisting largely of the appeasement lobby or outright fascists) recalled Edward VIII, and impeached King George VI. His eldest daughter was crowned in Ottawa in 1953 (after her father's death in 1952), and denounced her uncle, accusing him of being a pretender and stating that she is the true Queen of Britain and the Commonwealth. The dispute between King James III (the son of Edward VIII, born in 1956) and Queen Elizabeth II still goes on.

After a long island-hopping campaign, the United States, and the Commonwealth defeated Japan in August 1945. The war is ended by surrender after the dropping of two atomic bombs on Japan. Japan is occupied by the US, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia and becomes an important American ally in Asia.

German-American relations were generally peaceful, and Germany used that time to reconstruction, normalisation of its government (especially in Europe), and establish sympathetic governments in South America, the Middle East, and Asia. The Reich's massive war damage caused it to neglect Europe's colonies, and a process of independence started slowly.

Germany gained two allies in Africa (in addition to the European colonies in North Africa and the Horn of Africa), Egypt and South Africa.

Germany's good relationship with America would not last long inspite of the fact that no one in Germany saw it coming. After the shock of defeat, people were keener to face the Nazis with a strong Western front. General MacArthur won the 1948 election against Joseph P. Kennedy. After that, German-American relations became extremely cool. It also meant the end of one of the old guard. Hitler blamed von Ribbentrop for the cooling off in relations and the absence of any warning. Joachim von Ribbentrop was sent to Paraguay as Ambassador (it was publicly stated that it was for personal reasons).

"Independence" for EuropeEdit

After the war, Germany sought to formalise its control over Europe, as well as end the occupation of most of Europe's states. As early as August 1945, the German foreign office put together proposals to return independence to no less than four West European countries. These countries included Italy, France, Norway, and the Netherlands. Ribbentrop strongly advocated independence for all of the European states. Ribbentrop was no lover of the idea of national independence (except that of Germany, of course). Ribbentrop was interested in a power grab. The standing situation was that real power in the occupied countries was divided between the Wehrmacht and the SS. The Reich Minister of Armaments, the Reich Labour Ministry, the Reich Economics Ministry, and the Reichsbank exercised effective economic power. The role of the German foreign office was essentially non-existent. At most, Ribbentrop's men served as messengers between the German government and the puppet governments. With nominal independence, all German control would have to be exercised by diplomatic means through the foreign office.

The foreign office gave Ribbentrop the lines and Ribbentrop quietly argued the case to Hitler. According to Ribbentrop, occupation looked bad to outsiders and was extremely expensive. According to Ribbentrop, an end to occupation would make it easier for President Joseph Kennedy to come closer to Germany, and perhaps even grant trade credits to Germany. More importantly, independence could make a peace treaty possible. This meant a formal end to the war with the United States, and it would force the US to recognise the various puppet governments in Europe.

The process of granting independence began in Scandinavia and Western Europe. This was because these countries were perceived to be stable, and most had full governments anyway. The Armistice was already in place, which removed any threat from the UK (US troops had completely withdrawn from Western Europe by July 1945). The Nazis also believed Western Europe and Scandinavia to be suitable due to the racial similarity between their peoples and most of the people of the United States. The Nazis grossly overestimated this "Transatlantic race bond" (as Ribbentrop called it).

France was to be the first on the list. The German occupation of France officially ended in November 1945. Germany restored sovereignty over the whole country (minus Alsace-Lorraine, of course), and suggested that Pétain and Laval move the capital back to Paris. The Vichy regime (the French government never managed to shake the "Vichy" label in spite of the move to Paris) merged much of the resistance into the Milice with great success. This success spurred the Nazis to further concessions. The first move was the immediate release of all French POWs held in Germany, and all forced labourers. This created good will towards the Germans among Frenchmen. The Vichy regime offered Germany a Pact of Mutual Defence and Friendship. This Pact would allow German troops to remain in the country, but now they would be there for "European defence". For morale reasons, the Germans did not want to keep large Army units in France anyway. The Kriegsmarine however needed to remain in France for Atlantic access (through the Biscay ports). With the "Berlin-Paris Pact" in place, France had achieved its independence.

In Denmark, the process was simpler. The defeat of Overlord had disheartened the Danes. Indeed, their King, Christian X suffered a heart attack and died that day. His son, Frederick IX, met the German Ambassador the day after his father died. The Ambassador told him that Britain would soon sue for peace, and that he could either appoint a government from the Danish Nazis (under Frits Clausen) or see Denmark annexed by Germany. King Frederick IX, seeing that he had been beaten, agreed to the German blackmail. The Danish Nazi government was, shortly after the Armistice, able to negotiate a rapid withdrawal of German troops.

Unlike most European states, Belgium is not a single nation, but two nations welded together. Thus, Belgium had two national socialist movements. The French-speaking Walloons formed the Rexist Party and the Dutch-speaking Flemings formed the Flemish National Union. Each movement wanted to split Belgium. The Rexists wanted an independent Wallonia, while the VNV wanted to incorporate Flanders into a "Greater Netherlands". The Dutch NSB (Nationaal-Socialistische Beweging, National Socialist Movement) also wanted a Greater Netherlands, under their control. Tensions between all three groups escalated throughout 1945. Early in 1946, the Germans overruled all three groups. In a secret meeting with the leaders of the NSB, the Rexists, and the VNV, the Nazis said that it was necessary to maintain a united front against America, Russia, and their allies. To that end, the dispute between them would have to end. The solution proposed (and imposed) by the Nazis was simple enough, the NSB would govern Holland in its existing borders, and the VNV and Rexists would form a "Government of National Unity". In Belgium, this worked without a hitch.

In the Netherlands, there were problems. Queen Wilhelmina returned to the Netherlands with her government after the signing of the Armistice in March 1945. The Reichskommissar, Arthur Seyss-Inquart expected his assistant, Anton Mussert (the "Führer of the Dutch People") to be made Prime Minister. Queen Wilhelmina refused. This was a problem because Germany intended to make a final peace with the United States, and any overreaction in Western Europe could derail the peace effort. Arthur Seyss-Inquart came up with a simple solution: he'd get the NSB and the Dutch SS to stage a coup. Seyss-Inquart ensured that his name would not be mentioned, and he even publicly condemned the putsch and ordered the NSB and Dutch SS back to barracks. As arranged, they ignored him, and arrested Queen Wilhelmina and the Cabinet. To spare Wilhelmina's life, the Cabinet resigned. The Queen then abdicated and went into exile. First, she went to Batavia, then she went to Australia, where her descendants live today. Anton Mussert declared the "Republic of the Netherlands" as a one-party NSB state. The coup was loudly condemned in North America and Oceania, and US President Joseph Kennedy's decision to recognise the Republic of the Netherlands led to a noticeable drop in popular support for the Administration, as well as condemnation in the media and in Congress. The subsequent MacArthur administration would sever relations with Holland.

In Norway, Vidkin Quisling's Nasjonal Samling (National Gathering) had acted as a puppet government under the Reichskommissar Josef Terboven. Berlin well understood that Josef Terboven was held in contempt by most Norwegians. The only Norwegians who respected Terboven were Quisling and his supporters, who had been granted some power. After the Armistice, Norway's head of state, King Haakon VII remained in Britain with his pre-war Cabinet. They still claimed to be the legitimate government of Norway, and the British Government still gave them some protection (however Halifax did not protest at the presence of Quisling at the Armistice talks). King Haakon VII publicly expressed a wish to return to Norway, and resume the throne. He was not explicit about the type of government he intended to lead, but he did say that "Norway's future should reflect Norway's grand traditions". The inference was clear, at least in Germany. Wanting to avoid a repeat of events in Holland, the Germans decided that Haakon VII would be allowed to return, and that his former government could resume office. In return, the Germans wanted a treaty that would keep Norway demilitarised, and allow German troops to remain in the country in perpetuity. Considering the British and American policies of leaving Europe to its fate, and the lack of any other friends in the world, Haakon VII reluctantly agreed to Germany's terms. In London, Haakon VII and his cabinet boarded a Lufthansa Focke-Wulf 200 Condor on 6 October 1945 bound for Oslo. The plane never arrived. A bomb detonated in the aircaft over the North Sea. The fact that it was a deliberate bombing and not an accident was clearly seen by the escorting RAF Mosquito fighters. When news of the bombing was received in Oslo, Quisling broadcasted the news of the King's death (calling it a tragic accident), and proclaimed the "Nationalist Republic of Norway", with himself as President. Reichskommissar Josef Terboven suggested that Berlin recognise the new regime, and grant Norway its independence. Ribbentrop and Hitler both favoured Norway as a republic under Quisling, and felt that Haakon VII would have been troublesome. Up to this day, the wreckage of the Fw 200 has not been found, and there have no successful investigations of the bombing.

Colonial MattersEdit

After the war, Germany found itself in effective control over a large set of colonial empires. This was something the Nazis had never expected. Unlike Kaiser Wilhelm II, Hitler did not favour colonialism in Africa and Asia for Germany, Hitler saw Germany's imperial ambitions being fulfilled in eastern Europe and Russia. Germany needed a policy for the colonies of their new vassals. Their initial policy was simple - leave the European states with empires to their own devices. Germany was still facing a strong potential enemy in Russia, and a Cold War with the United States. It could not afford to be tied down in places that no German had heard of. Hitler was firm on this - they must not help the European nations maintain empires unless it directly benefited Germany.

Shortly after the accession of Elizabeth II to the British throne, most of the British colonies in Africa declared their allegiance to Elizabeth II. Those that didn't were adjacent to Italian or Vichy French colonies. The Americas decided to recognise Elizabeth II as their rightful sovereign. The colonies were content to take instructions from Ottawa, however Ottawa was not so keen to issue instructions, therefore independence soon followed in most of Africa, except for Southern Rhodesia. France had informed Britain that unless the Governor of British Guiana swore allegiance to King Edward VIII and his government followed the instructions of Lord Halifax's Colonial Secretary, France would invade from French Guiana. A new Governor was promptly flown out to Georgetown (an ironic name!) to take over. To prevent any issues with Germany's Nationalist Chinese allies, new Governors were appointed to Hong Kong and Macau by Britain and Portugal. Malaya, Singapore, Borneo, and the Dutch East Indies were lost to Germany, as they were crawling with American and Australian troops. France lost its African colonies south of the Sahara.

The Vichy French however managed to reassert themselves in Indochina and North Africa. Portgual resolved to fight to keep its colonies, but (by 1975) Russian-backed and American-backed militias had made the situation in Mozambique, and Angola untenable for Portugal.

The Cold WarEdit

The ending of the Korean War was merely the beginning of a new phase in what was now called the "Cold War". Both sides had nuclear weapons, and the means to deliver them. The strategy of both Hitler and MacArthur was massive retaliation. Any attack would warrant a immediate, massive, nuclear response. As nuclear stockpiles increased on both sides, it was clear that the movement of a single Panzer battalion into Russia could potentially end all life of the globe. In the mean time, both sides attempted to expand their influence in the post-colonial "Third World". Men like the fascist Peron in Argentina and the capitalist nationalist Sukarno in Indonesia drew the battle lines of the Cold War. In Africa, the proxy battles over former-colonies could be three way affairs with pro-American, pro-Russian, and pro-German factions.

In the Americas, this proxy-Cold War was most controversial. The United States saw the expansion of German influence in the Americas as a direct threat. The Monroe Doctrine held that the expansion of influence of European powers in the Americas was a threat to the United States. State after state fell into the Fascist fold. Apart from the Guianas (British, French, and Dutch), Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Paraguay fell under German-influenced dictators (one of whom, Alfredo Strößner of Paraguay, even had German parents). However most controversial of the pro-Nazi Latin American leaders was Fidel Castro of Cuba. Castro's rebel army overthrew the pro-American dictator Batista and put Cuba on the course to National Socialism. A totalitarian government with a secret police force and concentration camps was established. Laws repressing the Afro-Cuban population were imposed. Critics of Castro have said that "Castro took the 1935 Nuremberg Race Laws, crossed out 'Jew' and replaced it with 'Nigger'". In Kennedy-era America, the "Havana Race Laws" (as they were called in the English-speaking world) were a convenient stick with which to beat (rhetorically) the Castro regime. The Kennedy Administration decided to act against Castro. A force of Cuban exiles with OSS help invaded Cuba in 1961 at the Bay of Pigs, but the lack of US air support doomed the invasion to failure. This, combined with other (almost amateurish) OSS operations against Castro drove him much closer to Germany.

Although the Germans had a head start with their long range missile program during the war (The German V-2 rocket was the first viable long range missile) the US had jumped ahead during the 1950s. The German ICBM program was placed in to the hands of Wernher von Braun's team, and the Reich Air Ministry. The Reich Air Ministry insisted that the ICBM have the same level of mobility as the V-2 rocket, while the von Braun team focussed most of its energies on a space program. The space program showed far more progress than the missile program, with Germany placing the first artificial satellite in orbit in 1955, and the first man in 1959. As magnificent as these achievements were, they coincided with the stalling of the ICBM program. The only way for Germany to mount a nuclear attack on the United States was with bombers, and the USAF's and RCAF's interceptor squadrons could defeat bombers.

American Jupiter and Thor missiles stationed in Russia and Saudi Arabia could cover any target in Europe with megaton thermonuclear warheads. The Germans decided to counter this by building bases in Cuba for their A-14 medium range ballistic missiles, and A-16 intermediate range ballistic missiles. When American U-2 reconnaissance aircraft spotted the construction of launch sites, an international crisis ensued (the Cuban Missile Crisis or Kubakrise). The United States armed forces initially considered bombing the launch sites and invading Cuba, predicting that the Germans would back down. President Kennedy believed that this would rapidly lead to nuclear war. Announcing that the US would not accept German offensive weapons in Cuba, President Kennedy imposed a blockade on Cuba. All ships approaching the island would be searched, those carrying offensive weapons would be turned back. Back-channel negotiations provided a solution, the Germans would remove their missiles and nuclear bombers from Cuba, in return the US would remove their missiles from Russia, and Saudi Arabia six months later and would pledge never to invade Cuba.

The Cuban Missile Crisis was a victory for the United States. Hitler was forced into a public backdown, and the United States replaced its intermediate range Jupiter and Thor missiles based overseas with increasing numbers of Atlas and Titan intercontinental ballistic missiles based in the US. Germany began a crash program to get an ICBM in service as soon as possible. Their program focused on the A-20 satellite launcher. With appropriate modifications, it was turned into a basic ICBM with the ability to cover any North American target from Eastern Europe (over the Arctic). Hardened surface shelters for the missiles and support facilities were built in Ostland, the Ukraine, and the General Government. By mid 1963, Germany had a modest but growing force of ICBMs armed with thermonuclear warheads.

The Cuban Missile Crisis also brought the world closer to nuclear war than it had ever been before. Germany adopted a doctrine close to the American doctrine of flexible response. Conventional forces, and tactical nuclear forces would be built up. To this end, Hitler decided to abandon the military clauses of the Treaty on Final Settlement in Europe, and encourage the now fascist governments of Europe to develop powerful military forces. Britain, France, and Italy in particular were encouraged to move beyond colonial policing in Africa and develop military capabilities suitable to high-intensity warfare.

The Wehrmacht was reorganised into regional "Fronts" to fight the Allies in a Third World War. Military collaboration in Europe embraced not only soldiers, sailors, and airmen, but also European designers and engineers. This would culminate in the formation of EADS GmbH in 2000, which consolidates almost all of Europe's defence and aerospace industries into a single conglomerate.

In addition to the ICBM program, a team working for the Kriegsmarine under Arthur Rudolph was working on Germany's first U-boat launched ballistic missile. Germany developed the nuclear powered U-boat before the United States, but the missile program took longer. Rudolph found the solution, solid rocket fuel. With that development completed Germany was able to commission its first ballistic missile submarine in 1965 as a counter to the American Polaris submarines. Germany now had a functional nuclear triad.

1965 also bought a nuclear threat from Russia, which had developed its own nuclear weapons and intermediate range ballistic missiles. These could hit any West European target from Russia. Longer ranged missiles could be based in the Urals and beyond to cover the same targets.

While the war in Vietnam raged, further developments in nuclear weaponry came to fruition including multiple warheads. Nuclear arsenals on both sides became so large that each could destroy the other many times over.

Vietnam WarEdit

see main article: Vietnam War

The strategic significance of Asia in particular now occurred to Hitler, and to prevent another stalemate in Asia (or even defeat, though he did not say this), Hitler resolved to aid the Vichy French fight against the Viet Minh. The Viet Minh were an insurgent movement led by the charismatic Ho Chi Minh, who led his men against the French, then the Japanese, then the French again. The Viet Minh were supported heavily by the United States, which had formed a relationship with the Viet Minh during World War II. The Germans supported the French with arms, and released men from the Charlemagne Division of the Waffen SS to fight with the French. Despite this support, the French were defeated, and after the Siege of Dien Bien Phu, the French sued for peace.

The histories of Vietnam and European Fascism had been linked since the defeat of France in 1940. The Viet Minh had driven out the army of Vichy France in 1954, and an extremely uneasy truce was proclaimed between the social democratic American-supported North Vietnam, and the fascist German-supported South Vietnam. The MacArthur Administration wanted the South brought to heel by the Northern leader Ho Chi Minh, and Ho was happy to oblige. Ho Chi Minh wanted to lead a united Vietnam. He reactivated the southern Viet Minh as the National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam (NLF, commonly known as the Viet Dan Chu or VDC). The VDC began its fight by carrying out terrorist attacks throughout the South's cities, and guerrilla warfare in the jungles, rubber plantations and rice paddies of South Vietnam. Germany decided to aid the South Vietnamese in their fight against democracy. Germany started by supplying equipment, then moved on to advisors. By 1962, the advisors were taking small parts in the fighting. This was especially true of the Luftwaffe.

By 1965, Hitler (in one of his last orders) sent two Army divisions and two SS division to South Vietnam. A large Luftwaffe force was sent. Despite victories in the battles, the German generals had little idea of the type of the enemy they were fighting, or of the support they were receiving from the United States. The Germans had no international support outside the EU, and its small circle of allies. By 1972, the Germans decided to leave the South Vietnamese to their own devices (with German logistical support). In 1975, the South fell (producing one of the most famous images of the war, an American-made M48 tank bearing the flag of the National Liberation Front bursting into the Presidential Palace in Saigon). In months, the Pathet Lao had taken over Laos driving out the pro-German monarchy, and the pro-Nazi Lon Nol regime in Cambodia was defeated by the pro-American Khmer Bleu. The defeat in Vietnam was Germany's first real defeat (World War II, and Korea being stalemates).

After HitlerEdit

Hitler's death in 1968 led to marked change in the Third Reich. The office of Fuhrer was discontinued, and the old offices of Reich President and Reich Chancellor were reinstated as separate posts. The two people selected could scarcely have been better, Grand Admiral Karl Dönitz, and Reich Minister Albert Speer. Both men had a good working relationship going back to the war. Dönitz and Speer established a more or less normal collective government in Germany. Hitler's detailed will (he not only appointed Dönitz and Speer, but the entire Cabinet as well) prevented a long power struggle at the top of the NSDAP.

Dönitz and Speer also formalised European governance, turning the EEC into the European Union. From 1972 onwards, the European Union steadily expanded its power over European nations, bringing them to the point that 80% of the laws of Britain or Greece are in fact made by the EU's (largely German) civil service.

Cold War sabre rattling continued between the great powers and their allies for the next few decades. The build-up of nuclear weapons continued at break-neck speed. In addition to US nuclear weapons, Germany and its allies now had to face the nuclear forces of Russia, Canada, and Australia. The costs of newer nuclear weapons were spinning out of control, with the Luftwaffe demanding a new generation of mobile ICBMs.

The costs of preparations for nuclear war, and conventional war, combined with the costs of the Vietnam War, placed an immense burden on the German economy. Hitler had shown (and Speer believed) that living standards could only be pushed down so far before the people "cracked" and demanded a change in the economy, and ultimately, in leadership. It goes without saying that any Nazi would rather die than contemplate that sort of change. Speer's policy was to negotiate a way out of the Vietnam War, to strengthen Germany's East European allies, and to pursue nuclear arms control talks with the United States.

American President Johnson was keen to pursue arms control talks, and preliminary discussions took place as early as 1969. Johnson had said publicly that "Speer is a man we can do business with". American anti-Nazis retorted that the only "business" one could do with the Nazis was "the oldest business in the world". Nevertheless, the talks continued. An agreement was finally reached, and the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty was signed in 1972, and ratified shortly after. SALT required both sides to slightly reduce the number of land-based ballistic missiles, capped the number of nuclear-armed strategic bombers with intercontinental range (such the US B-52 or the German Ta 800, and only allowed for new submarine-launched ballistic missiles (counted in launch tubes, rather than submarines) if the same number of land-based missiles were removed.

The SALT Treaty was the first component of Detente between superpowers. The agreement was significant, but it had flaws. These flaws came to light in 1973 when the new US President, Barry Goldwater, was inaugurated. he was an anti-Nazi and a critic of SALT. While he was not prepared to abrogate the treaty or withdraw from it, he sought advice on how to circumvent the treaty. While Germany felt the relief of withdrawing from Vietnam and reducing its own nuclear spending, the Goldwater Administration put the pressure on. They encouraged the government of North Vietnam to attack South Vietnam, and launched the development of a new generation of nuclear weapons. The new generation of American land-based missiles were to be equipped with multiple warheads called "MIRVs" or "multiple independent reentry vehicles". One missile could now to the job that required three before. Old land-based missiles such as Atlas were retired early in favour of the submarine launched UGM-73 Poseidon. The capping on the number of bombers was based on the premise that such bombers would be armed with one or two bombs. Goldwater pushed for the development of smaller cruise missiles. The ALCM project called for a weapon small enough for a B-52 to carry 20.

As these American weapons came into service, Speer and his foreign minister looked like a joke. They had been hoodwinked by the Americans who the Nazis had always derided as "uncultured" and "stupid". The Germans struggled to catch up. A MIRVed ICBM was already in the works in Germany, and a crash program allowed Germany to adapt this to existing ICBMs. The German Navy was less lucky, but the retirement of older land-based ICBMs and older ballistic missile U-boats allowed the introduction of a new class of ballistic missile U-boats. This new class had larger launch tubes, allowing for a MIRV missile (in contrast, the US were able to MIRV their Polaris missile, and some of their newer Polaris submarines could be fitted with the new Poseidon missile). Germany's economic circumstances continued to worsen. To fund this expenditure, Germany printed government bonds and coerced its European allies into buying these bonds. Germany was essentially exporting its inflation into Europe. Clearly, this could not continue forever.

Fortunately for Speer, it didn't. In the United States, Jimmy Carter unexpectedly won the 1976 election, and was inaugurated in 1977. Carter favoured a return to detente, and canceled many of the new nuclear weapon systems coming into service or in development (including the MX missile). Carter also initiated new negotiations with Germany regarding a new Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT II as it was known). Formal talks began in 1979, and a basic framework was agreed involving capping the maximum number of warheads a missile could be allowed to have, and a maximum number of weapons an aircraft could be allowed to carry.

Germany's extensive intelligence operations provided invaluable information to aid the process. The Germans received all kinds of information regarding the MX missile and Trident, as well as the now canceled B-1 bomber. These intelligence operations were however brought to a sudden end in mid-1980. A combined operation of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation. Together they disrupted a number of German intelligence operations in the US, Canada, and Australia. Both the Abwehr and the Ausland-SD were affected by the disruptions. This scandal destroyed the SALT II talks, and a political scandal in the United States destroyed Carter's chances of reelection. Reich Chancellor Albert Speer's health declined through out 1980 and 1981. On the 1st of March 1981, Albert Speer suffered a stroke and died.

The EightiesEdit

Unlike Hitler, Speer did not leave a detailed political will. This inevitably lead to a power struggle in the NSDAP. For the while, Speer's Deputy Chancellor Karl Carstens ruled as caretaker while the NSDAP chose a new leader. The contenders were Reichsführer-SS Erich Mielke, Reichsleiter Erich Honecker, Foreign Minister Kurt Waldheim, and Deputy Chancellor Karl Carstens. Of these contenders, Carstens was without doubt the weakest. He had little support, and was appointed Deputy Chancellor because Speer did not regard him as a possible threat. In addition, he was in his late sixties, and there were concerns about his health. He had collapsed at a reception in 1980, and smoked heavily (which did not please the NSDAP ideologues). Waldheim appeared to be the strongest contender, at least he did to outside observers. He could take a large portion of the credit for the SALT agreements, and for the other elements of detente. He also had a respectable war record (unlike all the other contenders). Mielke and Honecker were seen overseas as the outside runners. Both men were former Communists. Honecker had been imprisoned for "preparation of high treason", while Mielke had been a fugitive in the USSR. The foreign observers who made these observations about Mielke and Honecker did not take post-war Nazi principles into account. In the absence of the USSR, communism essentially ceased to be a threat. Ex-communists could get by if they adapted themselves to new princples. Honecker had collaborated with his captors, offering evidence against German communists who had not fled to the USSR. He even claimed to have renounced communism, and offered to enlist in the Wehrmacht. Honecker was "rehabilitated" and released in 1948. Mielke, like all the exiled communists, was returned to Germany in 1946. He was immediately sent to a concentration camp. There, he revealed that he had worked for the NKVD. Mielke was willing to advise the SS on NKVD techniques, and become a Kapo. In 1949, Mielke was released with a notation along the lines of "fully reformed, ready to enter National Socialist society". Honecker joined the NSDAP, while Mielke was quietly commissioned into the SS as a Major, and assigned to the Gestapo. In 1970, Mielke succeeded Heinrich Himmler as Reichsführer of the SS. Honecker managed to do so well, that he combined the state post of Reich Minister of European Affairs {responsible for official control of the other European states) as well as Reichsleiter of the NSDAP/AO and Relations with Allied Parties (in other words, responsible for political control of other European political parties such as the Parti Populaire Français and the British Union of Fascists).

In the post-Hitler era, the leadership of the Nazi Party was essentially decided by the Reichsleiters and the Gauleiters. The voting process was basically a formality, the prior politicking was what mattered. Carstens was persuaded to drop out of the race quite early. His heart wasn't really in it, and he was promised continuance in the Deputy Chancellor role as long as he wanted, and a very comfortable retirement. Curiously, all of the remaining three contenders made this promise. Waldheim could take the credit for detente, but with that came the blame for the debacles of SALT, and the Paris Accords. Although these were essential for Germany, they were tough. Honecker bought Waldheim into his camp by promising him the new position of "Chairman of the European Community". Kicking Waldheim upstairs would save him (and everyone else) a lot of problems.

That left the problem of Mielke. Honecker sought out an old friend, SS-Oberstgruppenführer Wilhelm Franz of the Reich Security Main Office. He started an enquiry into the 1980 spy scandal. Franz assigned a famously indiscreet officer to the enquiry, and the story rapidly got out. Honecker told Mielke that he owned Mielke a favour for "the KPD days", and that he could insure that ensure that the enquiry would exonerate Mielke and his men. All Mielke had to do in return was publically support Honecker. In reality, Honecker had no intention of protecting Mielke, but Mielke believed him. Mielke's entire SS career had been in the RSHA, mainly in the Gestapo, and this seems to have made him paranoid. He was so afraid of the embarrassment of the enquiry into foreign counter-intelligence that he would accept any offer that would protect him.

On the 18th of March 1981, the Reichsleiters and Gauleiters of the NSDAP met in Munich in the "Brown House", and elected Erich Honecker as leader of the NSDAP. In Berlin, Reichsadmiral Karl Dönitz appointed him Chancellor that evening. Two months earlier, Ronald Reagan had been sworn in as President of the United States.

Reagan was elected on a platform that included a stronger policy against Nazi Germany and the EEC. Increased defence spending was a key feature of the Reagan strategy. To respond, Europe had to strain its economic resources. Honecker was successful in persuading most of the European states to increase their defence spending. Although Germany by itself had a smaller economy than the US, the European Economic Community all together had a larger economy than the US. A lot of the slack was taken up by the European states, which expanded their military forces. Honecker found gaining agreement on this point easy, he had long-standing relationships with all of Europe's political leaders, and the militaristic element of Fascism ideology made the various European governments only too keen to spend more and recruit more. Military budgets increased steadily, as did the level of debt and deficit. Having Europe arm itself was making it possible for Germany to sustain this pace.

While fortifying Europe against the "Reagan threat", Honecker took care of the threat at home, in the form of the resentful Mielke. Evidence was presented to Honecker that someone very senior in the SS was passing information to the United States, and that this leakage was largely responsible for the destruction of a large portion of German intelligence operations. The report refrained from naming the actual man responsible, but the reports of someone close to Mielke passing information to the enemy were too much for Honecker to ignore. Honecker, backed by the Army, confronted Mielke. Mielke said that his own internal security personnel had cleared everyone of senior rank in the SS. Honecker persisted, and demanded that Mielke step down. The Commander of the Army told Mielke that the Wehrmacht would take any steps necessary to safeguard Germany. Mielke saw this (correctly) as a direct threat. Mielke resigned, and was allowed to move to Chile (where he lived until 2000). The man who presented (or, according to some sources, concocted) the evidence was appointed as his replacement, Wilhelm Franz. The Army too supported Franz, who was a distinguished Waffen-SS veteran of the Vietnam War.

Honecker decided that the best way to "shake" American confidence was proxy military action. He authorised Italian and French action against Chad, and supported a Tamil independence movement in Sri Lanka. Honecker invited the Iranian cleric Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini to Berlin, and sent more advanced arms to Iraq such as the Leopard 2 main battle tank, and the Messerschmitt Me 663 fighter. Even Tornados were sent to Iraq, turning Iraq into a major military power in the Gulf region. South Africa was offered military equipment on very easy payment terms, and given approval to transfer older German-made equipment to Rhodesia. China's requirements were too large for even German industry to fill, but German technicians set up advanced production lines in China for the latest German military equipment.

Inside the Reich, laws which had been loosened by Speer were doubly tightened by Honecker. Gestapo and SD recruitment were increased. Ausland-SD units received conditional authorisation to assassinate dissidents and German exiles abroad. Some emigration into countries into Switzerland had always been tolerated, but Honecker ordered the police to string barbed wire along the border, lay mines, and post armed guards with orders to shoot border-crossers.

In addition to building up military forces, and increasing repression at home, Honecker pushed for more economic consolidation and regulation. Most German industries had been merged into "sector conglomerations" such as "Deutsche Motorenwerke". Honecker began to move towards EEC-wide consolidation. Collaboration had already been used extensively, specially in defence, and Honecker wished to formalise that arrangement. A key example of this policy was the merger of Aérospatiale, Agusta, Bölkow, Focke-Achgelis and Westland into "Eurocopter".

Honecker created problems in the German relationship with France by pressuring the French into granting independence to Syria in 1982. Honecker believed that a Ba'athist government in Syria would benefit Germany. This was especially true in the area of oil exploitation. The leader of the Syrian "Arab Ba'ath Socialist Party", Hafez al-Assad lived in exile in Iraq. He agreed that, were he placed in power, German companies would be favoured in oil contracts.

The French resisted German pressure, withdrawing from military cooperation, and withdrawing from the development of the new Eurofighter. French President Mitterand also tried to marshal British support. Mitterand told Prime Minister Tyndall that the Germans would then try to get Britain out of Cyprus, Malta, and force the return of the Suez Canal Territory to Egypt. In retaliation, Honecker threatened to withdraw German contracts with French firms. Although this arguably violated EEC directives, German companies were bound to obey their own government, and the German government could of course place contracts where it liked.

In Syria itself, anti-French riots mounted. The Foreign Legion were flown to Syria to aid the local Arab levies. There were several casualties in the riots, but Mitterand had underestimated France's economic dependence on Germany. With the loss of business causing a run on the Franc and a large increase in inflation, Mitterand was forced to accept independence. A referendum was held near the end of 1982, which showed overwhelming support for independence. Elections for a government were to be held in Syria in mid-1983. The Ausland-SD and Abwehr rigged the elections to favour the Ba'ath Party. Hafez al-Assad was sworn in as Syria's first President in August 1983.

Although Germany had gotten what it wanted in Syria, everyone could recognise the damage that had been done. Fundamentally, the European Community is not built on fascist ideology and common European spirit alone, it also relies on Germany's willingness to use its military power to preserve the various fascist states. Honecker had essentially destroyed that bond by pressuring another European nation into giving up territory it believed was its own. When Honecker invited Finland into the EEC, the Finns seriously contemplated and debated the idea, until the Syrian independence affair. The pressure exerted by Germany on France to give up Syria persuaded the Finnish politicians that neutrality was the better course. During 1984, Honecker tried to rebuild the relationship between Germany and France and Britain. He gave "solid assurances" that Lebanon would remain French, and that no pressure would be brought to bear because of Lebanon's "large Christian population" and "internationalist history and status as Europe's door to the Middle East". Mitterand did not put too much stock into that, but he did note the increases in German contracts with French firms (in fact these increases were above the pre-Syrian independence levels). However, Honecker did nothing to stop the Assad regime placing its oil contracts with German firms rather than French.

The British had been mollified by Honecker's support for Britain's move to retake the Falkland Islands, though the lack of follow through when it looked like Canada would win the war mitigated any good feelings that had been generated.

In 1984, Reagan's increased defence spending took a "disturbing turn" (according to the German Foreign Office). That "disturbing turn" was the Strategic Defence Initiative. This was Reagan's policy of creating a defence system that could significantly blunt a German nuclear attack. It could include ground-based, and orbital systems.

Honecker had never had good health at the best of times, and the years in Dachau had taken their toll on him. On the 29th of May 1985, Erich Honecker suffers an aneurysm and dies. Unlike the passing of Speer, the death of Honecker did not lead to a power struggle inside the NSDAP. Only one candidate was viable, and that was Reichsführer Wilhelm Franz.

Franz was sworn in as Chancellor the night Honecker died. He inherited a Germany with massive problems. Spending was too high, the economy was stagnant, and he had found that Britain's military adventure in the South Atlantic had been directly authorised by Honecker. The war could have placed Germany on a collision course with the United States. Worse still, the failure of the Anglo-Argentine forces in the Falklands paved the way for the collapse of the Galtieri regime in Argentina, with it being replaced by a pro-American democracy. Honecker had been highly successful as Europe Minister, but as Chancellor, he had a near disasterous effect on EEC relations. The Strategic Defence Initiative was straining Germany's military resources, as were the rumours of the development of stealth aircraft in the United States. To face this situation, Franz realised that the first step was for Europe to present as a united front. To do this he needed to repair relations between Britain, France, and Germany. This would not be an easy task. There had been since the early 1960s a proposal to create a land link between Britain and France. France and Britain had started serious discussions of a Channel Tunnel in the early 1980s. The main problem in getting the tunnel started was a lack of starting funds. Private funding was examined, but no one was prepared to back such a proposal. The transport and infrastructure companies in Britain and France were already accustomed to acting only as government contractors. New Chancellor Wilhelm Franz proposed that Germany provide the startup funding for the tunnel. This seemed to mend relations between Britain, France, and Germany.

Since the 1940-41, Germany had been in de facto control of most of Europe's armed forces. This was because these forces ostensibly worked for German puppet governments or Reich Commissars. After the peace treaty and the rise of Fascism in the fifties and sixties, the European states had joined the new "Axis Pact", which was a fairly loose defence alliance. Germany had military, air, and naval forces in most European countries, but little direct control. European integration had focused on economic control. This meant that Germany had little control over the forces of most of its European allies. This worked well in the case France, Spain, and Italy, as their forces were primarily used for colonial policing. The retention of the colonies served Germany's interests, and the French, Spanish, and Italians had far greater expertise in colonial matters than the Germans, so the Germans were content to leave colonial policing to the experts. The Second Falklands War had shown the flaw in loose controls. Had Canada suffered serious losses (i.e. an aircraft carrier), the US could have directly entered a war with an EEC power. This had the potential to drag Germany into a war, which in turn could "go nuclear". This, at least, was the logic that Franz had used to develop the idea of European military integration. The fact that his predecessor had authorised Anglo-Argentine military action in the Falklands was placed aside. In any case, while the initial invasion was allowed, the escalation was uncontrolled, and according to Franz, that was Germany's real concern. Germany gained tacit agreement from the south and east European states as early as October 1985. The Denmark and Norway gave agreement-in-principle shortly after.

The Wehrmacht High Command drafted the arrangements itself. Europe was to be divided into regions, with each region having its own "Front", all reporting to Oberkommando Europa. The armed forces of each European country were to be divided into two parts, internal security and "European defence". The part allocated to "European defence" would fall under the command of an appropriate front. Most of the Front Commanders would be German, and the Supreme Commander Europe (who would be the European Communities' most senior professional soldier) would always be German. This arrangement was accepted by the other European powers as it formalised what had been there for decades. In addition, Germany's economic and military clout in Europe meant that it always got its way. In Brussels, the Treaty establishing the European Alliance Organsiation (commonly known as the Treaty of Brussels) was signed in August 1986.

Maastrict and the NinetiesEdit

During the late 1980s, Franz continued to "beat the drum" for European unity. He had stated his goal in a secret meeting with with the Reich Cabinet and the Reichsleiters: before the end of his Chancellorship, the European Community would become the government of a "European Federal State" (Europäisches Bundesstaat). Reich Chancellor Franz also advocated a monetary union with a new currency. The "march to Europe" had been going on for thirty years, and in that time Germany had moved Europe into a common market with common policies for agriculture and trade, a customs union, and a military alliance. The NSDAP created a parallel political organsiation called the Alliance of European National Movements for Europe's various Fascist political parties.

Inside the NSDAP, Reich Chancellor Franz's new policy was dubbed "Towards one Europe". The approach advocated by the civil servants of the Foreign Office was the so-called "Pillars approach". In this, the various European institutions would become part of a European Union. The first pillar, the EEC was already in place. The second, called the "Common Foreign and Security Policy" would combine the European Alliance Organsiation with a harmonisation of foreign policy. The third consisted of police and judicial cooperation, which in practice would mean Germany would make the criminal law of all European states.

German and EEC civil servants began the process of drafting an new treaty as early as 1986, and the new treaty was ready in 1988. The treaty introduced the three pillars approach of the European Union, and started the process for creating a new EU-wide currency. To learn about how such a currency would work in the real world, the new EU introduced the European Exchange Rate Mechanism. This required European governments to keep their currencies with a certain ratio of the "European Unit of Account". This was set by the European Central Banking Group (Europäische Zentralbank-Gruppe) in Frankfurt. Heavily staffed by seconded Reichsbank men, the EZG set the European Unit of Account to benefit Germany at the expense of the other member states. The ERM went into operation during 1990. Combined with the German policy of coercing European central banks to buy German Government debt, this led to a sharp recession, and even civil instability, riots, and the assassination of the British Prime Minister. Several governments proved unable to maintain their currencies in line with the European Unit of Account, and had to pull out of ERM. ERM was terminated in 1993. Despite the real failures of ERM, Nazi propaganda managed to spin the whole process as a success, telling the German public that their economic leaders had "found the bugs, and were devising solutions". ERM had few bad effects in Germany (the Germans had been able to export their economic troubles to the rest of the EEC), and the Germans believed their propagandists. Nevertheless, the single European currency was postponed.

During the mid-1990s, the German Government increasingly turned its attention to foreign policy outside Europe. Germany provided extensive logistical support to Iraq before and during the Persian Gulf War of 1995, sold a nuclear reactor to North Korea, and bolstered support for South Africa and Rhodesia. Unfortunately for Germany, much of this activity failed to have the desired effect. The establishment of a North Korean nuclear program further isolated North Korea from the rest of the world. A lack of German assistance during the North Korean famine of 1997 created mistrust between formerly staunch allies. The defeat of Saddam Hussein's forces in the Gulf War was a humiliation for Germany. It was also a wake-up call for the Wehrmacht, for the Gulf War showed that the League of Democracies had the lead in military technologies, and that it was prepared to commit to the defence of its members.

One of the strategies Germany used to deal with the economic problems of the 1990s was squeezing more out of the Poles in the General Government, and giving them less in return. This strategy back-fired on the Germans during winter 1996. Poles in Lublin and Warsaw rioted against the German authorities. Predictably, the German police responded with lethal force. There had always been unrest in Poland, and force was the traditional method for dealing with it. In the years before the 1996 riots, compact video and satellite communications equipment had been smuggled into Poland. While the source of this equipment has never been specified, its effects were very clear. Video footage of German police shooting at Polish demonstrators was aired, first in Russia then throughout the world. The immediate reaction was one of outrage, especially when information emerged that the Poles were demonstrating for better rations and more housing. Berlin relented in the face of international pressure. The reforms announced by the Governor General of Poland included regulations of safe working conditions, increased funding for housing, increased food and clothing rations. While open demonstration was ended by the concessions, Poland would continue to be a source of problems for Berlin. Similar measures were enacted in Czechia (Reich Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia).

By the late 1990s, Germany decided to push Europe towards a new single currency. In a closed meeting in Oslo of European heads of government, Reich Chancellor Franz advised them that the time for a European currency had come. The global economy was going quite well, pushed along by a technology boom in North America and a manufacturing boom in Asia. Distorting an English cliche, Franz said "If you're going to change horses in the middle of the stream, best to make sure the stream is calm and the water clean." The German-dominated European Central Banking Group became the European Central Bank, and was charged with introducing the Euro by the year 2000. They set exchange rates between national currencies and the Euro to benefit Germany, and would demand the reserves of all of Europe's central banks. Propaganda and Finance ministries all over Europe worked together to inform people about the change in their currency, and to create popular support for it.

At midnight on 1 January 2000, under the slogan of "New money for a new millennium", the Euro was introduced. Non-physical forms of the Euro began to circulate at once. New banknotes and coins were introduced quickly. Due to the Yuletide/Christmas break, foreign exchange markets did not open until 5 January. News outlets in the League of Democracies began almost at once to predict the collapse of the Euro, and with it the Third Reich's "European order". However, the Euro managed to survive early teething troubles. Gestapo reports from that time indicated that merchants and customers were willing to adapt quickly to the new currency.

The Euro had quickly skewed the economic balance in Europe toward an even more favourable position for Germany than before. Events in the wider world were becoming more quiet, and less problematic for Germany. Relations with such countries as Iraq, North Korea, and China were substantially mended. The Cold War tensions between Germany and the United States were reduced, as were tensions in Asia between China, North Korea and Japan. Some even said that a new nuclear arms control treaty was possible. By the end of the century, Germans and their leaders felt a sense of prosperity and confidence.

The Third Reich in the Twenty-First CenturyEdit

The Third Reich entered the twenty-first century with a sense of confidence. European Millennium celebrations were widely attended, and German trade was extending into the democratic countries. The first European car dealerships in Australia were a potent symbol of the new trading relationships. Of all signs of the "New Understanding" (as some called it), the most powerful was Airbus. Airlines such as Air Canada, Delta, and Ansett purchased various Airbus aircraft. During 2002, Vice President Al Gore visited Germany, becoming the first Vice President of the United States to visit Germany after the war. Gore announced that he didn't believe Germany to be an "evil empire" (a phrase popularised President Reagan during the 1980s), and said he hoped for more trade and travel between Germany and the US. Germany's attempts to "rebadge" European diplomacy by shifting emphasis from the German Foreign Office in Berlin to the European "Common Foreign and Security Policy" appeared to be succeeding. The "New Understanding" included political changes. The EU stopped jamming foreign radio and TV signals beamed into Europe. Britain, France, and Italy began to allow local autonomy in their colonies. Political leaders in Ottawa, Washington DC, Tokyo, and New Delhi responded positively to the changes. The Brown Administration (USA) and Chrétien/Martin Governments (Canada) supported Reich Chancellor Franz's policies, which he called „Offenheit für Änderung" (Openness for Change).

„Offenheit für Änderung" embraced many of the EU member states, but was looked on cynically by Germany's non-European allies such as South Africa and North Korea. In Africa, Latin America and Asia, the world situation remained tense. This did not dampen spirits in Europe. Many thought the new century brought a new paradigm in global relations. The European Central Bank contributed to this belief with a loose monetary policy. Interest rates were kept low, inflation targets were generous, so people borrowed and spent. Germany had virtually no unemployment since the mid-1930s, those who could not find a job were ordered into one (the Reich Labour Service is an example of "conscripted employment"). Those who would not or could not follow such orders were considered anti-social, and were sent to concentration camps. Nevertheless, German business organisations, the Deutsche Arbeitsfront (German Labour Front, a Nazi trade union) and the Reichsarbeitsdienst (Reich Labour Service) all reported an increase in the number of Germans working in the nominal private sector. The years of 2002-2014 were years of growth and prosperity.

The "New Understanding" was upset by events outside Europe. These events included an upsurge in violence in southern Africa, (especially in Angola and South West Africa), and the discovery in 2004 of a nuclear technology trading ring led by Pakistani scientist Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan. This trading ring included the services of South African, German and Pakistani scientists. The clients of this trading ring included Iraq, North Korea, Burma, Chile, Indonesia, and Egypt. The German Reich had previously prided itself on anti-proliferation (due more to Nazi paranoia than to any desire for a nuclear-free world), and had criticised both the Atoms-for-Peace program of the US Government and the League of Democracies "Nuclear Sharing Program". Much of the technology being traded was German in origin. While the Reich claimed it knew nothing of the "Khan Organisation", and had issued indictments for all German and European members of the group, most League authorities took the Khan Organisation to be a "deniable" operation of the Abwehr.

The scandal caused the McCain Administration to distance itself from the German Reich. It also influenced the Canadian General Election of 2006, helping to bring the ardent anti-Nazi Chris Marshall to power in Ottawa. The McCain Administration accelerated work on its "National Missile Defense" program, and Canada, India, Japan, Australia, and Saudi Arabia all made agreements to help to fund and develop the new missile defence systems. The Strategic Defense Initiative of the nineteen eighties was intended to protect the US against the massive German ICBM and SLBM forces, while National Missile Defense was only intended to guard against a small number of missiles. Thus, NMD was to be arrayed against the prospective nuclear missile forces of countries like South Africa, North Korea, or Iraq. Nevertheless, the German Government took NMD to be a "threat to the existing force balance", and reinforced the German nuclear arsenal. This reinforcement included the hugely expensive UB-T-6 submarine launched ballistic missile.

Late in the first decade of the 21st century, German economic managers began to worry about the European economy created by the Maastrict Treaty. One economist said "Germany is lending to Greece so that the Greeks can buy German goods, and while the Greeks borrow like Greeks, they pay the same interest rate as Germans". The Reich Minister for Economics presented a plan to the Reich Cabinet called "United Europe". Europe already had military union, economic union, and monetary union. The plan advocated gradual fiscal union.

Negotiations started in 2006. The Germans pushed for full legal personality in international law, including a full-time presidency (previously the "President of the European Union" was merely a European head of government serving for a year), and a foreign service. The League of Democracies had resisted all attempts to establish any EU diplomatic presence. The League's position was that it dealt with sovereign states only. The proposed treaty changes would limit national vetoes, and would apportion EU votes by population, rather than treating each country equally. This would mean that the German Reich, with 350 million people, would have nearly six times the influence of the United Kingdom, with 60 million people. Controversially, the Germans proposed that the largely-German European Commission have the power to make "limited changes to governance arrangements" without reference to the European Council. The Germans managed to get all of their treaty proposals approved, but at a high economic cost. Reich Chancellor Franz reasoned that buying off countries such as Greece, Italy, and Portugal was justified by the gains of their new treaty. The new treaty was signed in Lisbon in 2007.

The Lisbon Treaty was meant to put the brakes on the massive inflation that was threatening to destroy Europe's economy. ECB economists recalled the situation of 1939, in which the only options open to Hitler were war or bankruptcy. The economists and bankers had tried to apply the brakes several times before, and were always thwarted by the politicians and the Generals and Admirals, who insisted on increased spending. The League of Democracies made matters worse for the Nazis. From 2010, the League operated under the "Amherst Doctrine". This doctrine was heartily approved by Prime Minister Marshall of Canada, Prime Minister Abbott of Australia, Prime Minister Tanigaki of Japan and Prime Minister Singh of India.

The final aim of the Amherst Doctrine was to break Germany and the EU financially or isolate it politically. Raising the pressure on Germany's allies in Africa, Asia, and Latin America would force the Europeans to spend more and more of their accumulated wealth on keeping Fascists in power in those nations. While abandoning German allies could be financially expedient, it would be detrimental to Germany's position as a world power. Germany continued to export its inflation to Europe and its arms to the developing world. Nevertheless, some saw the writing on the wall. A secret Bank of England report stated that "If current increases in debt levels, to support increased public spending are sustained over the long term, then it is possible that, at the end of the day, that the governments of Europe will have greatly increased difficulties with servicing debt and maintaining public spending in line with political expectations. This will create economic and political difficulties for the Government which the Bank will not have the monetary means to resolve. It is difficult to say whether or not the European Central Bank will make the necessary resources available for a devaluation. Should the ECB conduct another devaluation, the overseas effects are impossible to predict with any degree of certainty. In either case, the Bank and the Government will face extremely difficult choices in the years ahead."

China's economic boom, started during the 1980s, had given China a massive trade surplus. In fact, China's trade surpluses were the largest in the world. China's banks, and government invested heavily in lending money to European governments. China's portfolio of Euro-denominated assets was, by the 2010s, massive. It amounted to several trillion US dollars, making China Europe's largest creditor. While the Chinese bought massively, they were unable to keep up with Europe's insatiable demand for credit. Increasingly, the European Central Bank purchased European government debt. While Chinese debt purchases were based on Euros spent buying Chinese exports, the ECB simply created new money to buy government bonds.

Seeing the need to find some way to reduce spending (or at least, slow the rate of increase), Chancellor Franz decided on political reorganisation. His "New Eastern Policy" was to give independence to Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. The new states would govern themselves, but be under German supervision. German security forces were to be removed, but the military forces designed to face the Russia's "Western Strategic Direction". The Germans would still have the benefit of easy trade terms with the East, but would not have to pay for the Eastern administration. The new policy was meant to be kept secret, but had leaked to Moscow. The Russians placed their Western forces on alert. The US and its nearest allies had never recognised Russian sovereignty over the Baltic States, but they made it clear that they wouldn't recognise these German "Bantustans".

The Germans persisted with the creation of these "independent states", which all gained their independence on 22 June 2011, the seventieth anniversary of Operation Barbarossa. Reich Chancellor Franz pointed out that the Baltic peoples had welcomed the Germans as liberators, and had hoped to be given their independence. The Germans portrayed the move as righting a wrong, and as the broadening of a European partnership. Russia's reaction was somewhat provocative, several Russian aircraft attempted to penetrate the airspace of Germany, and several other European countries. Norway, Britain, Romania, and Bulgaria intercepted no less than twenty Russian bombers between them. This particular provocation was stopped after a Romanian Messerschmitt Me 609 accidentally hit a Russian Tupolev Tu-16 bomber. The Tupolev limped back to its base in Rostov-on-Don, but the Romanian Messerschmitt crashed into the Black Sea, killing its pilot. Tensions settled down, but the Russians made absolutely clear their opposition to Belarus and Ukraine becoming "independent".

The Beginning Of The EndEdit

The incident over the Black Sea helped to focus Germany's allies on the nature of their relationship to the Reich. Romania and Hungary in particular began to question their ties to Germany and the EU. Economic factors further increased tensions inside the EU. A secret Reich Economic Ministry report, which was not even shown to Chancellor Franz, projected the collpase of the economies of Greece, Hungary, and Britain without serious reform. The problems included excessive debt, a European Central Bank committed to monetising Euro-denominated debts, and a political class that refused to allow prices to sit at their natural levels. Earning US Dollars was difficult at the best of times. The Eurozone had been dealing with a persistent lack of foreign exchange since its inception, and the Reichsbank had been dealing with the same problem for nearly 80 years. The crisis began in the east. In 2014, the Romanian and Ukranian harvests fell well short of targets, while annual interest on Greek debts totaled more than half of Greek tax receipts. Britain's debt problems also worsened. To avoid famine in Europe, the Germans could starve their eastern colonies, however Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania were theoretically EU members, equal to France or Spain, and Russia watched Belarus and the Ukraine keenly. The Germans knew that armed partisan groups still operated, and that the Russian Government would support them in fighting for food. The US, Canada, Australia, and several other democracies had bumper crops. More than enough grain existed in the world to feed Europe, however the farmers would never accept Euros for their grain. This meant using their own reserves of hard currency or borrowing it from the US. The European Central Bank reported that its reserves of hard currency would not cover enough grain to avoid famine somewhere in Europe. As a short term measure, the EU decided to push exports into the hard currency markets of the democracies. Motor vehicles, tourism, delicate foodstuffs, and alcoholic beverages were Europe's main sources of hard currency, yet hard currency was required to produce these many of products, and the Europeans faced increasingly tough competition. Germany, and the other European states borrowed more and more heavily.

The Franz regime prioritised the Reich over the Eastern Territories, and reintroduced severe rationing in the Reich Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, and reduced rations in Ukraine, Ostland, and the General Government (Poland). The European Commission cut grain prices paid to farmers through the Common Agricultural Policy, but retained the same production quotas for European usage. The CAP also tried to delay payment by offering bonds redeemable in six months. This amounted to an attempt by the EU authorities to seize Romanian grain and pay in "grain certificates" rather than in cash. In Ukraine, the German land-owners received a subsidy for their grain (though the Ukranian farm workers saw none of this money). When the news reached Romania that German landowners were being spared the privations they were forced to suffer, the farmers decided to forcibly stop the Romanian National Grain Company (Română companie națională de cereale) taking the grain. When the RCNC came with the police, the farmers and the townsfolk set up barricades. A media blackout failed to stop news of the demonstrations reaching Romania's cities. The Romanian President tried to talk the Romanians out of an uprising, but half way through his speech, a member of the Iron Guard Legion shot him in the head, then took his own life. The Securitate found out that the assassin's father, a wheat farmer, had been killed by the police the day before in a demonstration. The new leader of the Iron Guard and President of Romania, Costin Nicolescu believed that these demonstrations could turn into a national uprising. Suppressing such an uprising would either require massive force, and possibly German troops. Nicolescu decided to take a different course, he decided to start negotiating with the farmers. The talks resulted in a power-sharing arrangement with the newly-formed "Romanian Reform Front". This was a turning point. Non-fascist parties in Europe had typically been kept from power. The German Government had not been prepared for this. It lacked the military resources to control Europe itself and remain economically viable. Its policy of allowing European military forces to build up worked as long as the governments remained loyal to Germany. The Franz regime contemplated military action against Romania. The Wehrmacht advised against attacking Romania because of the geographical closeness of Romania to Turkey and Russia. This was the compelling argument, military intervention on the Black Sea was seen as too risky.

The Romanian negotiations enabled the Iron Guard to retain the leadership of the government, and the ministries of interior and defence. However the Reform Front took charge of the personnel ministry (which hired civil servants), the finance ministry, the foreign ministry, and the economics ministry. Thus, the Iron Guard's power base now consisted of an increasingly unreliable state security apparatus, while the Reformists had the power to undermine Iron Guard influence. Their next strategic error was to allow for elections in twelve months. The Iron Guard had a great deal of experience of stealing elections. In this case, they underestimated the backlash against the Iron Guard, and overestimated their ability to preserve themselves through reforms. The 2015 Romanian Election was a landslide defeat for the Iron Guard. They went from holding 95% of the seats in the Grand National Assembly to holding 32%. President Nicolescu resigned on election night, and flew into exile in Germany. The new Romanian President, Artur Vladimirescu led a cabinet in which virtually all the important ministries were in the hands of Reformists. He vowed to change the Romanian constitution, and to begin the process of leaving the European Union. The new constitution would provide for a democratically elected government. State controls over the economy were relaxed. The Securitate would be replaced by several intelligence agencies. The new Romanian Security Intelligence Bureau was an explicitly apolitical service whose role was confined to information gathering about threats to national security. It would no longer act as a secret police force. To placate the Germans, President Vladimirescu promised not to join the League of Democracies in his term of office, and he promised not to sponsor reformists elsewhere in Europe.

Events in Romania were encouragement enough for some. Reformists in Hungary, Bulgaria, Slovakia took to the streets to demand change. The Hungarian and Bulgarian leadership, fearing a repeat of the unrest in Romania began a process of reform and some limited liberalisation. In Slovakia, the response was different. The demonstrations were brutally suppressed by the Army and the Hlinka Guard. Hundreds were killed, hundreds more were imprisoned or sent to concentration camps. Several dozen disappeared altogether (it is believed that they were turned over to the Gestapo to be secretly killed). Slovakian attempts to keep the killings secret failed when groups of reformist demonstrators reached Romania. Their stories were relayed to the world. In the United Kingdom, a reformist movement was gaining support, and it looked as if other west European countries would follow suit.

In Berlin, the leadership was divided on how to handle the situation. The Gestapo and the SD were already beginning to notice a "reformist mood" among the population. Some favoured the "Slovakian solution", while others favoured a more conciliatory approach. Reich Chancellor Franz did not make his views obvious. He had hoped that the mood would settle down. He didn't want to take the conciliatory approach for fear of losing power, and he thought the Slovakian solution would cause panic that could lead to nuclear war. The fact that he was over eighty years old did not help matters. A Gestapo report quoted a factory worker from Leipzig who said "if this geriatric can't bring these arrogant youngsters into line, send him to the old folks home." His view was shared by many in the SS, and a good few in the civil administration and the Wehrmacht.

Portugal's response to the crisis was to reform, and to grant autonomy to its colony of Portuguese Timor (East Timor). This lead to a brief conflict between Australia, New Zealand, Portugal, and Indonesia over the small colony. Indonesia attempted to wrest control of Portuguese Timor, believing that autonomy would lead to independence, with a pro-Australian government. Australia, New Zealand, and Portugal resisted and defeated the invasion (see main article: 2016 Portuguese Timor conflict). Amazingly, France (the other EU member with interests in the South Pacific) supported Indonesia against Portugal. Portugal's fascist government decided to withdraw from the EU.

Italy's Fascist Grand Council decided to depose the leader of the governing Republican Fascist Party in response to the economic crisis, and the threat of general social collapse. They appointed the non-partisan civil servant Mario Monti as Prime Minister. The National Republican Guard (GNR) attempted a coup in favour of hardliner Alessandra Mussolini (granddaughter of the Duce Benito Mussolini). The GNR was aided by SS units in Italy, both German SS and the Italian SS Legion. Open fighting broke out in Rome, Naples, and Florence, with the GNR, the SS, and other hardline elements fighting the Army, and Carabinieri. After three days, the new Government of Mario Monti defeated the hardliners. It is likely that the SS in Italy acted without direct orders from Berlin (though perhaps with tacit approval). After cementing its control, the Monti Government moved to expel the remaining German SS from Italy (though the Kriegsmarine and Luftwaffe were allowed to stay), and disarmed and arrested the surviving members of the Italian SS Legion. Several of its officers were executed, though its commander, Gruppenfuhrer Massimo Savarino managed to escape to Germany. The Monti Government attempted to extradite him legally to answer charges of treason. The Germans refused, and Monti removed Italy from the EU.

Desperate to deal with the situation, Chancellor Franz and his closest hardline advisors came up with a grand plan. The aims of the plan were to regain European economic supremacy, and reassert German control over Europe. The plan had two components. The first called for Iraq, Syria and France, with German assistance to invade and take Saudi Arabia, and to dominate or conquer the Gulf emirates. The second called for Germany, with the aid of France, Slovakia, Croatia, Greece and various pro-Fascist forces to retake Romania, Italy, Bulgaria, and Hungary. Much of this plan was to be carried out by the local pro-Fascist forces. The Wehrmacht General Staff was deliberately kept out of the plan, planning was conducted by Iraq, Syria, and staff officers of the Waffen-SS. Nevertheless, the Wehrmacht General Staff found out about the plan, as did the Reich President.

In the Balkans, economic problems accentuated existing ethnic divisions. Of the nations of the former Jugoslavia, Croatia was the most privileged in Germany's "New Order", encompassing parts of what had been Serbia, and all of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Serbia and Montenegro both suffered from EU and Croatian policies. Bosnia-Herzegovina in particular suffered from Croatia's exploitative rule. During the war, the Bosnian Muslims had thrown their lot in with the Catholic Ustaša, but afterwards, the Ustaša betrayed them. Corruption by Croatian officials working in Bosnia was rife, and included such things as requiring bribes for Muslims seeking travel permits for Hajj. Steep increases in food prices, and cuts in pay that were perceived to apply disproportionately to Bosnia-Herzegovina provoked a series of riots in Sarajevo. These were brutally suppressed by the Police and the Ustaša, but they had left their mark.

Dissident Croatian officers, mostly Bosnians, took military control over a large part of Croatia. Serbian and Montenegrin troops were invited in by the "Bosnian Liberation Front". Quickly, a conflict broke out. This bitter war put Franz's military plans in Southern Europe and the Middle East to a halt. Serbia and Montenegro were ejected from the European Union, but nothing else was done. German forces were expelled from Serbia, and they went without resistance. OKW had decided to leave Serbia for strategic reasons. While they believed that they would be ordered to fight against the Serbian Government, they would be cut off from supplies and reinforcements by the Serbian Army. German plans called for intervention with fresh troops joining those leaving Serbia. Hungary was the only EU member state to support German intervention in the Croatian Civil War. Much of the Wehrmacht's High Command had decided that the NSDAP government should be removed. They believed that intervening in the Croatian Civil War would cause the conflict to widen, perhaps causing Russia to intervene on behalf of the Serbs. With the tacit endorsement of the Reich President, the Generals finalised their plan. Chancellor Franz's wish to intervene in the Croatian Civil War helped the plotters, because it gave them a chance to remove from Germany troops upon whom the Nazis could call to resist a coup. To that end, the 1st SS division "Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler" and the 3rd Waffen-SS division "Totenkopf" were dispatched to Hungary.

The CoupEdit

The Wehrmacht had extensive plans for the imposition of martial law, should it be ordered by the Government. While this was of course intended to protect the government from events like a breakdown of social order, the plans could easily be used to remove a government. Thus, the coup had two elements, the general takeover of government could be largely planned in the open in the guise of plans to protect the regime from rioting or other disruptions of normal governance, and the secret element which concerned the overthrow of the NSDAP. The latter element was taken up by members of the High Command and the Abwehr. The Abwehr had planned coups in other countries, so it was simple for them to alter their plans to apply to Germany.

In planning a successful coup, it is necessary to know exactly what a coup is. It is not a revolution or an uprising, in which the general population rises to overthrow the government across the whole country. A coup involves the overthrow of government by people within government. US author Edward Luttwack likens a coup to judo, in which the opponent's strength is used against them. It was not necessary for the plotters to physically take over the entire Reich, only the centres of power. The plotters identified several cities that needed to be controlled within the first hours. They included Berlin, Munich, Nuremberg, Hamburg, Vienna, and Frankfurt. These were the key governmental, financial, and transport centres of Germany. The plotters believed that it would be impossible to gain control over Kiev, Minsk, and Lublin, as these cities were under the total control of the SS. However, the East could be cut off if Breslau, Posen, and Warsaw fell under Army control. This would buy enough time for the plotters to solidify their control before Eastern forces could intervene against them.

It is also necessary to carefully determine who could be trusted, and to remove those who couldn't be trusted. Anticipating a crisis, ardent Nazis in the Army were transferred to posts outside Germany, particularly posts in the East. Officers more disposed to change were brought into Germany. In particular, they were assigned to the Wehrmacht Ministry the Grossdeutschland division, and to military intelligence and security posts in the capital. In the RSHA, the plotters found allies in the Orpo, particularly the Berlin Orpo. Other allies of the coup included Gauleiters from parts of Germany that had been badly affected by the EU's economic woes, and other members of the NSDAP leadership that thought they could take advantage of a change in leadership.

The list of targets the plotters assembled were those from the plans they used outside Europe. The targets included party and government buildings, communication points, and media outlets. Police and RSHA installations would also get the attention of the coup. Their goal was to take all of these targets in a short time with minimum violence. Arrest lists were secretly drafted, and special squads of military police were organised to find and seize those on the list. All of these preparation took place under the guise of an internal security exercise.

Within the NSDAP, there were people who wanted to move more quickly to remove Chancellor Franz, and avoid a military coup by toppling him within the party. The NSDAP had a leadership meeting for all the Gauleiters and Reichsleiters scheduled for 22 August 2016. This was the date the Generals had set for the coup, as they could get all of the NSDAP leadership in one place for arrest. During this meeting, the Gauleiter of Thuringia planned to move a vote of no confidence in Chancellor Franz. The NSDAP had no provision for such a motion, however if the Gauleiters and Reichsleiters refused to serve Franz, he could not practically act as leader of the party. Somehow, Chancellor Franz found out about this plot, and four day before the conference he sent a Gestapo squad to kill the Gauleiter of Thuringia, Bodo Ramelow. Gestapo agents killed Ramelow and his wife. His Chilean au pair managed to get out of their house and into the street. The Gestapo agents ran after her. She managed to attract the attention of two Orpo patrolmen who called for the gunmen (whom they did not identify as Gestapo) to halt and drop their weapons. The Gestapo agents continued, so the patrolmen shouldered their submachine guns and shot both Gestapo gunmen, who died instantly.

When the local Order Police found that they had killed Gestapo agents, rather than criminals, their commander (who was part of the plot) handed them over to the military to keep them away from the Gestapo. When the plotters found out about the killings, they decided to move two days early. This would pose considerable problems, because the date chosen was intended to ensure that the entire NSDAP leadership was in one place, the better to arrest them all at once.

The codeword Timberwolf was sent out to military bases across the German Reich. Most of the troops involved in the plot had no idea what they were doing. The orders in Timberwolf stated that there was an attempt to take over the government, and that troops had been called out to ensure control of key communications points, and government installations. For the insiders, it was the signal to start the takeover. A special group from the Brandenbergers took over the government quarter of Berlin, the cluster of buildings that contained the Reich Presidential Palace, the Reich Chancellory, the important ministries and SS Headquarters. Particular attention was given to the Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, which had the capacity to cut off internet access to the entire Reich, and to take over the broadcast media.

GovernmentEdit

The modern executive and legislative branches of government of the Greater German Reich bears little resemblance to the government of the Hitler-years. The only resemblance is traces of the "institutional duality" between the State and the Party. The judiciary however is essentially the same.

ExecutiveEdit

The titular head of state in Germany is the Reich President, who is elected by the Reichstag. He appoints a Reich Chancellor to run the government's day to day operations. Decisions are made by the Cabinet (chaired by the Chancellor) and ratified by the President. The Third Reich has the following government agencies:

National AuthoritiesEdit

  • Office of the Reich Presidential Chancellery
  • Office of the Reich Chancellery
  • Office of the Administrator of the Reichstag
  • Office of the Party Chancellery

Reich MinistriesEdit

  • Reich Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda
  • Reich Ministry of the Interior
  • Reich Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • Reich Ministry of European Affairs
  • Reich Ministry of the External Territories
  • Reich Ministry of Defence
  • Reich Ministry of Aviation and Space
  • Reich Ministry of Maritime Affairs
  • Reich Ministry of Armaments
  • Reich Ministry of Finance
  • Reich Ministry of Economics
  • Reich Ministry of Nutrition and Agriculture
  • Reich Ministry of Labour
  • Reich Ministry of Energy
  • Reich Ministry of Science, Education, and Public Instruction
  • Reich Ministry of Ecclesiastical Affairs
  • Reicn Minister of Minerals
  • Reich Ministry of Telecommunications
  • Reich Ministry of Tourism
  • Reich Ministry for Export Industries
  • Reich Transportation Ministry
  • Reich Postal Ministry
  • Reich Ministry of Justice

Reich OfficesEdit

  • Reich Youth Office
  • Reich Atomic Energy Commission
  • Reich Labour Service
  • Office of the President of the Reich Bank
  • German Aerospace Agency
  • Office of the Inspector for Highways
  • Reich Treasury Office
  • General Inspector of the Reich Capital
  • Office of the Councillor for the Capital of the Movement
  • Office of the Reich Master Forester

Reich Commissars and ProtectorsEdit

  • Reich Commissar for Ostland
  • Reich Commissar for Ukraine
  • Governor General (Poland)
  • Reich Protector of Palestine
  • Reich Protector of Bohemia and Moravia

High Command of the Armed ForcesEdit

Police ForcesEdit

  • SS-Reichssicherheitshauptamt
    • Sicherheitspolizei
      • Sicherheitsdienst
      • Gestapo
    • Ordnungspolizei
  • Protectorate Police (Bohemia and Moravia)
  • Palestinian National Police Force
  • Ukrainian Schutzpolizei of the Reichskommissariat
  • Polish Police of the General Government
  • State Police of Latvia
  • Estonian Police
  • Lithuanian Police Force
  • White Ruthenian Police

Paramilitary ForcesEdit

Reich-owned corporationsEdit

  • Deutsche Reichsbahn
  • Lufthansa
  • Deutsche Reichspost
  • Deutsche Reichstelekom
  • Reichswerke Hermann Göring

LegislativeEdit

Germany's legislative body is the unicameral Reichstag. The Deputies of the Reichstag are elected to four year terms. A multi-party system was reintroduced in Germany in the 1970s, to appease international opinion and create the appearance of reform in the post-Hitler era. The dominant party is the National Socialist German Workers' Party. It sits in the Nationale Front (National Front), which is the organisation of legal political parties in Germany. The other parties allow to sit in the Reichstag are the German Centre Party (Deutsche Zentrumspartei) which broadly represents Catholic interests, the German National People's Party (Deutschnationale Volkspartei), a traditionalist conservative party, and the agrarian German Farmers' Party (Deutsche Bauernpartei). There are approximately 700 Deputies, selected from a national party list. The Reichstag's main function is to hear speeches from the Chancellor and prominent Nazis. Most legislation is handled by Presidential Decrees which are devised by the Chancellor and the Reich Ministers. Voting is merely a formality.

National Socialist German Workers' PartyEdit

The National Socialist German Workers Party (Nazi Party) is the government party of the Third Reich. Apart from the fact that most state officials must be members of the Nazi Party, the Nazis control a number of organisations which are instrumental to the running of Germany.

Law and JudiciaryEdit

Officially the "Constitution of the German Reich" (popularly known as the Weimar Constitution) is still in force, however today that constitution is nothing more than a historical curiosity (in Germany, an extremely dangerous curiosity). Germany's de facto constitution is the Enabling Act, 1933, and the Reich Decree on Governance of 1969. The latter sets out the way in which the post-Hitler Third Reich was to be governed. The German legal system is charged with the preservation of the National Socialist state, and the elimination of "enemies of the German volk". Germany in fact has four legal systems inside the Reich territory. The NSDAP, Wehrmacht, and SS all have their own courts, and legal services. NSDAP Officers , Wehrmacht personnel, and SS personnel can only be tried or sued in their own courts. Most civilian matters are dealt with by the District Courts, with more important matters going before the Landgerichte (Regional Courts) and the Reichsgericht (Reich Court). The Volksgerichtshof (People's Court) deals with "political offenses" such as black marketeering, work slowdowns, defeatism and treason against the Third Reich. In these cases, the death penalty sometimes applies. Rights of appeal exist in criminal and civil cases, but higher courts rarely consent to hear appeals. Germany has a system of "Genetic Health Courts", which have the power to sterilise "any person suffering from a hereditary disease." Acquittal in a ciminal case is no guarantee of being released. Often people acquitted of criminal charges are taken by the Gestapo. All German lawyers outside the Wehrmacht are members of the National Socialist Lawyers League. The German legal system has been one of the most important mechanisms in enforcing Nazi control over Germany.

Conventional criminals are dealt with by the Police and the normal courts. Sentences can range from a fine to death. They can also send prisoners to concentration camps. Political prisoners are divided into categories. Category A prisoners are the lowest priority. Their political offences are generally minor, such as leafleting or spreading rumours about the regime. In most cases, Category A prisoners are sent to a concentration camp in Germany for 6-12 months. The regime is tough, but not murderous. Category B prisoners receive sentences of up to five years. Typically, this is served at hard labour. Category B prisoners are often beaten or tortured. Category C prisoners serve ten years in a "Hard Regime" concentration camp, generally in the General Government. They also have the option to be deported to the General Government, Ukraine or Ostland after three years in an Eastern concentration camp. They can never return to Germany proper. Category D prisoners are considered "Lost to the German Reich". They are considered dangerous and unreformable. There are few prisoners in this category. Category D prisoners are held in solitary confinement for life. There are at least two prisons known by Western Governments to hold Category D prisoners, Bautzen II and Hohenschönhausen.

European UnionEdit

The European Union is ostensibly a free union of European nations. In fact, it is the means by which Nazi Germany governs Europe. It replaced the patchwork of Occupation ministries and military governments that had previously prevailed. It also replaced the various departments of the Reich Ministry of Foreign Affairs which dealt with pupped governments such as that of Vichy France. It was founded in 1957 as an initiative of Himmler and Speer.

List of Leaders of the Greater German ReichEdit

Heads of StateEdit

Title Name Term Lifespan Party Comments
Reich President Generalfeldmarschall Paul von Hindenburg 12 May 1925-2 August 1934 1847-1934 none Last Weimar President
Führer and Reich Chancellor Adolf Hitler 2 August 1934-29 April 1968 1889-1968 NSDAP Position combined with Reich Chancellor
Reich President Großadmiral Karl Dönitz 29 April 1968-25 March 1982 1891-1982 none First post-Hitler President, established the current formula of military President and political chancellor
Reich President Generalfeldmarschall Jürgen Brandt 25 March 1982-26 July 2003 1922–2003 none Ex-Army
Reich President Generalfeldmarschall Hartmut Lossberg 26 July 2003-incumbent 1950- none Incumbent, Ex-Luftwaffe

Heads of GovernmentEdit

Title Name Term Lifespan Party Comments
Führer and Reich Chancellor Adolf Hitler 30 January 1933-29 April 1968 1889-1968 NSDAP Position combined with Reich President on 2 August 1934
Reich Chancellor Albert Speer 29 April 1968-1 March 1981 1905-1981 NSDAP Position stands alone with military President
Reich Chancellor Karl Carstens 1 March 1981-18 March 1981 1914-1992 NSDAP Caretaker
Reich Chancellor Erich Honecker 18 March 1981-29 May 1985 1912-1985 NSDAP Former Reichsleiter for the NSDAP/AO and Relations with Allied Parties.
Former Reich Minister of European Affairs
Reich Chancellor Wihelm Franz 29 May 1985-incumbent 1932- NSDAP Former Chief of the RSHA and Reichsführer-SS

Administrative RegionsEdit

The Greater German Reich is divided into the German Reich, the Reich Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, the Reich Protectorate Palestine, the Reichskommissariat Ukraine, the Reichskommissariat Ostland, and the General Government.

The German Reich itself is divided into several Gaue (singular: Gau) and Reichsgaue (singular: Reichsgau).The Gaue were simply Nazi Party divisions, but since 1957, the Gaue were civil government divisions.

The Gaue are as follows:

  1. Gau Baden
  2. Gau Bayreuth
  3. Gau Berlin
  4. Gau Düsseldorf
  5. Gau Essen
  6. Gau Franken
  7. Gau Halle-Merseburg
  8. Gau Hamburg
  9. Gau Hessen-Nassau
  10. Gau Köln-Aachen
  11. Gau Kurhessen
  12. Gau Magdeburg-Anhalt
  13. Gau Mainfranken
  14. Gau Mark Brandenburg
  15. Gau Moselland
  16. Gau Mecklenburg
  17. Gau München-Oberbayern
  18. Gau Niederschlesien
  19. Gau Oberschlesien
  20. Gau Ost-Hannover
  21. Gau Ostpreußen
  22. Gau Pommern
  23. Gau Sachsen
  24. Gau Schleswig-Holstein
  25. Gau Schwaben
  26. Gau Südhannover-Braunschweig
  27. Gau Thüringen
  28. Gau Weser-Ems
  29. Gau Westfalen-Nord
  30. Gau Westfalen-Süd
  31. Gau Westmark
  32. Gau Württemberg-Hohenzollern
  33. Reichsgau Danzig-Westpreußen
  34. Reichsgau Kärnten
  35. Reichsgau Niederdonau
  36. Reichsgau Oberdonau
  37. Reichsgau Salzburg
  38. Reichsgau Steiermark
  39. Reichsgau Sudetenland
  40. Reichsgau Tirol-Vorarlberg
  41. Reichsgau Wartheland
  42. Reichsgau Wien

DemographicsEdit

Germany's demographics have been subjected to more government interference than any nation on Earth. The key text of National Socialism, Mein Kampf (My Struggle) formulates the Weltanschauung of Nazism with the ideologic trinity of: history as a struggle for world supremacy among the human races, conquered only by a master race, the Herrenvolk; the decisive, autocratic Führerprinzip (leader principle); and anti-Semitism targeting the Jews as the universal source of socio-cultural and economic discord.

Accordingly, Nazi Germany pursued a policy of policy of maximising the birth rate of so-called "Aryan" couples, euthanasia of the disabled, sterilisation of the "retarded". Nazi Germany is openly anti-Semitic. The German Government states that all German Jews (and most Jews from other European states) were resettled to a territory in Ostland (in the former-Byelorussian SSR) called "Judenland" (Jews' Land). These Jews are reported to number 5 million, but are not counted in the Reich Census. German families are encouraged to have as many children as possible. Bonuses, tax breaks, parental leave, and medals serve to promote reproduction. To cater for unwanted children, most German government agencies maintain a relationship with Lebensborn. A baby can be abandoned at a police station, fire station, hospital, NSDAP office, and that baby can be adopted out to willing parents. If one or both parties in a German marriage is unable to have children for medical reasons, they are required to adopt at least one child.

Inside the German Reich, there are 300 million people, over 93% of them are of German ethnicity. The remainder are Frenchmen living in former-Luxemburg (now part of the Gau Köln-Aachen) and the former Alsace-Lorraine areas (now part of the Gau Westmark and Gau Baden), Italians in the Reichsgau Tirol-Vorarlberg, Poles in Reichsgau Danzig-Westpreußen and Reichsgau Wartheland, Danes living in Gau Schleswig-Holstein and Czechs in Reichsgau Sudetenland. A variety of others of East European heritage live in Ostmark. This covers only German citizens. In addition to them are approximately five million immigrants. Many are EU citizens living in Germany for work (including foreign government officials, and EU officials). It is possible for Europeans of "Nordic" background who are proficient in German to obtain Reich Citizenship. In practice, this is limited to Britons, Dutchmen, Flemings and Scandinavians.

Most of the immigrant population are Gastarbeiter from Eastern Europe who come to Germany for a set length of time for "working class" jobs. Other points of origin for Gastarbeiter are Cuba, North Korea, China, Pakistan, Chile, Venezuela, Egypt, Iraq, and Indonesia. They are typically funded by an employer, and live in dormitories provided by the employer. To prevent the births of non-Aryan children who could become a charge on the German government, easy abortion is provided, and encouraged for Gastarbeiter. Another category of immigrant is the "Ostarbeiter". These workers come from the General Government, Ostland and the Ukraine. They are controlled even more strictly than the Gastarbeiter. Actions which would result in the deportation of a Gastarbeiter typically mean death for the Ostarbeiter. Ostarbeiter usually work on the land or in domestic labour, while Gastarbeiter tend to work in industry, mines and the retail sector. After the fall of South Vietnam, the Vietnamese Gastarbeiter were "Germanised" (that is, given citizenship and "declared" to be "Special Aryans".

The Ukraine, and Ostland host large numbers of German colonists. Apart from government workers, there are numerous farmers, and businessmen in the Ukraine and Ostland. Ostland is approximately 30% German, with 50% of the Ostland population consisting of "Germanised Balts". Planned famines in the forties and fifties resulted in the death of most of the Russian and Byelorussian population. The people of Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia were encouraged to produce children at a high rate to repopulate Ostland. The situation in the Ukraine is somewhat different as there is no equivalent to the (relatively) pro-German Baltic peoples. Germans consist of 40% of the population. Ukranians are treated as serfs, but if a Ukranian goes to the Reich as an "Ostarbeiter", his family is treated generously. Like Ostland, famines after the war greatly reduced the Ukranian population.

The General Government is almost entirely Polish. Only 20% of the population are German, and they consist mainly of police, soldiers, government administrators, and business managers. The Poles are used as a labour pool for the Reich. Factories built there are cheap to operate. German regulations on working hours, salary, safety, workplace harassment, and other conditions do not apply. Their treatment was brutal until the mid 1990s, when reforms in the General Government provided for improved conditions for the Poles.

The Reich Protectorate Palestine's population is more than 95% Arab. This excludes German garrison troops, but includes German civilian officials, and expatriate businessmen. In Europe, the Germans claim that the Jewish population were resettled to the east, eventually to a farming region in Ostland (Belarus). In Palestine, the German admit the total elimination of the Jewish population, and attribute these killings to armed Arab militias.

GeographyEdit

Germany's claimed territory extends from France to Russia. It embraces a variety of climates from the cold dry climate of the German Alps, to the wooded forests of Northern Germany, and the plain of Eastern Germany. It also includes the almost Mediterranean climate of the Black Sea coast of Southern Ukraine, and the vast grain fields of Ostland and the Ukraine.

Much of Germany's Eastern Territory is not recognised by foreign powers. The unrecognised territory includes:

  • Alsace and Lorraine (formerly part of France, but German sovereignty is recongised by the French State
  • Reich Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia (formerly part of Czechoslovakia, the Czechoslovakian Government-in-Exile in Ottawa is recognised as the legitimate government of Bohemia, Moravia, and Slovakia)
  • Danzig (recongised as a "Free City")
  • General Government, Reichsgau Wartheland, Reichsgau Danzig-Westpreußen (Poland, the Polish Government-in-Exile in Ottawa is recognised by the US as the legitimate government of Poland)
  • Reichskommissariat Ukraine, Reichskommissariat Ostland (recognised by the US as parts of the Russian Empire)
  • Luxembourg (recognised as an independent state under the Luxembourg Government-in-Exile in Ottawa)

Nazi Germany Map
The claimed territory of the Greater German Reich
MapGermany-RecognisedBorders
The territory of the Greater German Reich (as recognised by the League of Democracies, and Russia)

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