Why do I have the horrible feeling that amplifying the voice of this aristocratic proto-Hitler will cause an ugly Dreyfus-style scandal in the Empire?"...alarmed by the sudden assassination of the Kaiser and aware of his own advanced age, von Moltke had begun elevating a younger cadre of officers in the wake of Wilhelm's death and quietly notifying his longtime ally Bismarck that he intended to retire by the age of 85, if he was so blessed to live that long. A hero of the Third Unification War, Alfred von Waldersee, was in 1879 made his Quartermaster General and effective second-in-command on the General Staff, a position of tremendous prestige, signaling enormous trust by von Moltke in his young protege. Also brought into the General Staff at this time was a young major named Alfred von Schlieffen, who quickly became a key deputy to Waldersee, and Wilhelm von Hahnke, a friend to Schlieffen thought to be eyed as a potential head of the Military Cabinet.
Schlieffen and Hahnke were mainstream, doctrinaire soldiers of the Prussian aristocratic class, hungry and ambitious as they might have been. Waldersee, a magnetic personality who wielded considerable influence over both, was of a different breed - he was attracted to the fiery Stoecker sermons, referring to the rabid anti-Semite as a "Second Luther," and saw conspiracies everywhere he looked. In his view, Germany was arrayed against a vast enemy controlled by global Jewry, which in turn held sway over both Catholics, whom he detested, and liberals, who he viewed as a weak fifth column within Prussia. Waldersee's diaries, published after his death , reveal a man with grandiose designs on an apocalyptic "last war" against France and Austria, and perhaps even her nominal ally Russia, to secure the place of Germany forever. He detested the Kaiser first and foremost, viewing him as a "fleshy bag of a man, a puppet on strings held by the British whore," and as a bloc of liberals surged to power in the Reichstag, the lay Catholic Zentrum grew in influence and socialists still proselytized without being lined upon and shot, the man began to see his beloved Germany slipping away. His antidote was the deposition and execution of the Kaiser, the exile or death of Empress Victoria, suspension of suffrage to the Reichstag and de-emancipation, if not deportation and perhaps even liquidation, of the Jewish community. The notion of civilian control of the military and the Junkers losing their position was wholly alien to Waldersee, and the Kaiser returned his hatred.
Nevertheless, Friedrich - always indecisive and reluctant to act, and having been dissuaded by Victoria of turning his attention away from boxing out Bismarck  - decided not to demand Waldersee's dismissal in 1882 as the Quartermaster elevated more friends to attache positions in foreign embassies. He was particularly leery of making a move that would seem to second-guess Moltke, who was so respected that he was referred to as the "Kaiser of the army" by some despite his advanced age and declining faculties. Bismarck, for his part, was suspicious and leery of Waldersee, but began to see the man as a useful pawn to be played, particularly as he started to turn his attention less from German matters to specifically Prussian ones and look to the Landtag as the vehicle for his political maneuvers, seeing as Prussia's army formed the core of Germany's military, the Junkers were the cream of the elite, and there were not nearly so many liberals and Catholics to muddy things up for him in the three-franchise Prussian Parliament.
And so the stage was set for one of Germany's most infamous tragedies, all thanks to three men - Friedrich, Bismarck and Moltke - who with their own cross-purposes and agendas ignored a bubbling reactionary undercurrent within the armed forces..."
- Frederick and Victoria: Consorts of Germany
 This is all a little ahead of schedule, mind
 As I've said before, I think Freddy was less an ardent liberal hero like he's been mythologized as and more of just a wishy-washy guy who was easily bossed around by his wife
Interesting! The throne room at Neuschwanstein looks like something from a Byzantine palace, so I know Ludwig II poked around for other ideas. We're going to get a lot of SE Asian content as relates to Tonkin, where French-Chinese tensions are spiking, but Deutsche Kambodia and Siam are just moving along with internal improvements and stability with the German protectorate and friendship in place. Nothing too interesting there for now, until foreign eyes land on the Lao Highlands.Can we get some more info on what is happening in Southeast Asia? We have not heard from Deutsche Kambodia in a while, and I have heard that Ludwig II of Bavaria, the cousin of the current colonial governor there and the "Mad King" of Neuschwanstein fame, took interest in Oriental influences for his many castles. Also, some info on colonial India would be interesting. Is Russia's turn towards the east causing an intensified Great Game there?
I appreciate it! There will be lots and lots more to comeYou want to know something, I love your ATL and I would love to see more!
Ha! Love it. Better than the ideas I have for the guyI forgot about Maximilian's son until your recap. He should call himself Serpiente Plissken from now on.
you got itEscape from Mexico City