DBWI : Germany holds on to Lorrain ores

The Great War was a bloody, but relatively short affair, only two years. The Central Powers were riddled with shortages, which they hoped to alleviate via conquest.
One of the most critical ones was the German iron ore shortage. Not only did Germany already import French iron ore from the Briey-Longwy area prior to the Great War, it also lost access to the Thionville-Hayange minette basin after the Metz uprising and subsequent French push.
However, Germany did see great success in the early phase of the war, burning their way through Belgium and all the way to the Marne. How do you think the war would've gone had Germany retained access to the Thionville-Hayange basin, and captured the Briey-Longwy area ? How long would it have lasted ?
 
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The success of the localized, focused Lorraine Offensive and the failure of the long-distance Schlieffen Offensive profoundly influenced military planning. In our timeline this led military planners to believe that wars of maneouvre were no longer realistic with modern technology. Could this have changed if the Lorraine Offensive achieved nothing or if it never happened? Or is the idea of a war with rapid, deep offensives in the late 30s/early 40s ASB?
 
The French invasion into Germany led to France being able to take a lot of the territory, with the northern portions going to Luxembourg and Belgium. If France wasn't able to do that then the ability to make territorial demands in Europe would be a lot weaker. Of course, the Belgian Uprising and British landing in Calais were instrumental in cutting off the Germans so that France could actually sustain their pressure in Germany
 
The success of the localized, focused Lorraine Offensive and the failure of the long-distance Schlieffen Offensive profoundly influenced military planning. In our timeline this led military planners to believe that wars of maneouvre were no longer realistic with modern technology. Could this have changed if the Lorraine Offensive achieved nothing or if it never happened? Or is the idea of a war with rapid, deep offensives in the late 30s/early 40s ASB?
I think that the technologies that were nascent at the end of the Great War - such as the chars and airplane - would have gotten more attention in a longer war, and may have more time to mature. In this case, the late stages of the Great War may have returned to mobile warfare.
Under those conditions, it is possible that rapid, deep offensives could become the norm in The Next War. But that's a lot of speculating, and Western powers would have a major advantage on Germany there, due to having more motorised economies.
The French invasion into Germany led to France being able to take a lot of the territory, with the northern portions going to Luxembourg and Belgium. If France wasn't able to do that then the ability to make territorial demands in Europe would be a lot weaker. Of course, the Belgian Uprising and British landing in Calais were instrumental in cutting off the Germans so that France could actually sustain their pressure in Germany
Hmmm, true, the French focus on Lorraine did lead to a poor performance in the Race to the Sea. Perhaps, if there is no Lorrain uprising, we could see the French retaining the entirety of their coastline ? Then again, this did leave Germany vulnerable to naval landings, no matter how hard the British bungled them up...
 
Hmmm, true, the French focus on Lorraine did lead to a poor performance in the Race to the Sea. Perhaps, if there is no Lorrain uprising, we could see the French retaining the entirety of their coastline ? Then again, this did leave Germany vulnerable to naval landings, no matter how hard the British bungled them up...
The loss of coastline also strengthened Mediterranean trade and helped integrate west Africa, helping strengthen French control in a way Britain couldn't replicate or counter
 
The loss of coastline also strengthened Mediterranean trade and helped integrate west Africa, helping strengthen French control in a way Britain couldn't replicate or counter
I... disagree, actually. I believe the French modifications applied to Senegal and Ivoria were more due to the manpower shortages than anything. It's not as if France had lost all of its Channel coast; the Germans themselves chose to use the Somme as a frontline until its estuary.
 
I really don't think that the CP could have won the war even if they held on to those resources. Remember, they were also fighting the Russian Empire as well as France- Russia, which was able to absorb losses like the Masurian lakes and push to Danzig in 1916 under Brusilov. Yes, the Russian Empire then wasn't the global hyperpower that it is today, but I don't see how Germany could have beaten it. Germany was fighting a war in which it was comprehensively outnumbered and outgunned; I don't see how giving it a bit more iron could have changed that.
 
I really don't think that the CP could have won the war even if they held on to those resources. Remember, they were also fighting the Russian Empire as well as France- Russia, which was able to absorb losses like the Masurian lakes and push to Danzig in 1916 under Brusilov. Yes, the Russian Empire then wasn't the global hyperpower that it is today, but I don't see how Germany could have beaten it. Germany was fighting a war in which it was comprehensively outnumbered and outgunned; I don't see how giving it a bit more iron could have changed that.

Well, I'm working off French sources, but here's what I see :
Pre-war, Germany produced 19 MT of pig-iron using 14MT of imported ores, and 28MT of domestical ores.
Post-war, Germany consumed 11.4 MT of pig-iron, of which it was only capable of producing 2.7MT with domestical ores.
The difference can be simplified and placed on the Thionville-Hayange basin's back. In other words, France neutralised half the ore that Germany used, and stopped it from getting the bulk of the other 33% it imported, between economic war (the bidding war over the Swedish ores) and actual military force.
 
I think that the technologies that were nascent at the end of the Great War - such as the chars and airplane - would have gotten more attention in a longer war, and may have more time to mature. In this case, the late stages of the Great War may have returned to mobile warfare.
Under those conditions, it is possible that rapid, deep offensives could become the norm in The Next War. But that's a lot of speculating, and Western powers would have a major advantage on Germany there, due to having more motorised economies.

Speaking of airplanes, could a longer war have accelerated airplane development to reach the point where you can have efficient dive bombers and strategic bombing campaigns in the early 40s? I am specifically thinking of the infamous Longer Great War timeline. Yes, I know, there's a lot of borderline ASB stuff there, with all the magic submarine-proof trans-oceanic logistical networks, the idea that Germany's stable and democratizing political system was this close to collapsing and eventually subverted by a comic book villain, the idea that the socialist revolutionary wave would start in RUSSIA of all places it's like the guy who wrote it never read Marx, and so on. But I could definitely buy the idea that aviation could have played a very significant role from the very beginning of the war. I mean, the primitive versions of the 50s dive bombers had already been designed in OTL before the end of the 30s...
 
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Speaking of airplanes, could a longer war have accelerated airplane development to reach the point where you can have efficient dive bombers and strategic bombing campaigns in the early 40s? I am specifically thinking of the infamous Longer Great War timeline. Yes, I know, there's a lot of borderline ASB stuff there, with all the magic submarine-proof trans-oceanic logistical networks, the idea that Germany's stable and democratizing political system was this close to collapsing and eventually subverted by a comic book villain, the idea that the socialist revolutionary wave would start in RUSSIA of all places it's like the guy who wrote it never read Marx, and so on. But I could definitely buy the idea that aviation could have played a very significant role from the very beginning of the war. I mean, the primitive versions of the 50s dive bombers had already been designed in OTL before the end of the 30s...
It's not impossible that dive bombers could have a tactical role in an early 40s war, maybe even be somewhat effective, but I think that their impact was overestimated in the Longer Great War TL.
Strategic bombing, however, sounds like a plausible trend, so long as you don't go for the ridiculous night bombing of that TL. The navigational capabilities of 30s-40s aircraft were limited, and would be even worse at night. The author clearly skimmed over those issues, as far as I'm concerned. The accuracy of night strategic bombing would be awful, and deny the entire use of this, except for terror bombing.
 
One interesting side effect might be that the longer war causes a much bloodier, comprehensive, and earlier collapse of the Austro-Hungarians. They were lucky that the war ending when it did made things line up for them. People kind of underestimate the impact of Franz-Josef's death. What with it giving the empire a revival of pan national feeling just before the war's end. Whilst the Trentino offensive may have weakened the East and cost them Galicia it also gave the empire some victories to point to which certainly helped Karl at the peace talks and have him the space needed to create the Federation that would go on until the Magyar collapse of the 40s. Even then Ciselthania is still more or less together.
 
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