formion

Banned
While the war in the Danubian Front is very realistic and very plausible, drawing parallels from the OTL Crimean War, I am sceptical regarding the outcome of the Caucasian Front despite russian over confidence. Four main reasons:

a) In contrast to the OTL Balkan Front, the Ottomans in OTL had very few nizam regulars in the Caucasus. Now they don't have a huge french army in their side, so they have to focus incredibly more their resources in the Danubian Front. Yet, it seems they manage to raise somewhat more men compared to OTL. In OTL the Balkan Ottoman Army was measures of scale better than its Caucasian counterpart.

b) I think the importance of irregulars is overestimated quite a lot. Kurdish militias fought mainly for loot, not to kill as many soldiers as possible like the Spanish guerillas. Their impact in the OTL campaigns was negligible even though they could have been unleashed behind enemy lines. I really don't see how they can have such impact in just 6 months, even with russian blunders of that scale.

c) In OTL ~60,000 Ottomans couldn't defeat ~20,000 Russians. Yet now there are 90k Russians. The Ottoman Army in the beginning of the campaign had 53k men. A third of them was lost (killed or captured) in the field battle of Erzerum (17,6k) and another fourth was trapped inside Erzerum (13,25k). The remaining 22,5k men met up with another army of 24k and was defeated again. By all accounts, disease and desertion would have disintegrated what was left. Yet while in OTL thousands were deserting without having such a disastrous defeat, they do not now. I would expect the few remaining regulars to try to hold the Pontic Alps passes and the passes towards the Anatolian Plateau (and most importantly Sivas), leaving the Erzerum Vilayet basically pacified.


d) Did the OTL Russian Caucasian Army had similar failures in reconnaissance? A significant part of its forces were hardened Caucasian mountaineers serving in light infantry and cavalry.


This is well meaning criticism on a secondary campaign of the the war, based on the OTL campaign, TTL butterflies and the results of the TTL Battles of Erzurum. The last update was again of superb quality as always. Do continue the excellent work!
 
While the war in the Danubian Front is very realistic and very plausible, drawing parallels from the OTL Crimean War, I am sceptical regarding the outcome of the Caucasian Front despite russian over confidence. Four main reasons:

a) In contrast to the OTL Balkan Front, the Ottomans in OTL had very few nizam regulars in the Caucasus. Now they don't have a huge french army in their side, so they have to focus incredibly more their resources in the Danubian Front. Yet, it seems they manage to raise somewhat more men compared to OTL. In OTL the Balkan Ottoman Army was measures of scale better than its Caucasian counterpart.

b) I think the importance of irregulars is overestimated quite a lot. Kurdish militias fought mainly for loot, not to kill as many soldiers as possible like the Spanish guerillas. Their impact in the OTL campaigns was negligible even though they could have been unleashed behind enemy lines. I really don't see how they can have such impact in just 6 months, even with russian blunders of that scale.

c) In OTL ~60,000 Ottomans couldn't defeat ~20,000 Russians. Yet now there are 90k Russians. The Ottoman Army in the beginning of the campaign had 53k men. A third of them was lost (killed or captured) in the field battle of Erzerum (17,6k) and another fourth was trapped inside Erzerum (13,25k). The remaining 22,5k men met up with another army of 24k and was defeated again. By all accounts, disease and desertion would have disintegrated what was left. Yet while in OTL thousands were deserting without having such a disastrous defeat, they do not now. I would expect the few remaining regulars to try to hold the Pontic Alps passes and the passes towards the Anatolian Plateau (and most importantly Sivas), leaving the Erzerum Vilayet basically pacified.


d) Did the OTL Russian Caucasian Army had similar failures in reconnaissance? A significant part of its forces were hardened Caucasian mountaineers serving in light infantry and cavalry.


This is well meaning criticism on a secondary campaign of the the war, based on the OTL campaign, TTL butterflies and the results of the TTL Battles of Erzurum. The last update was again of superb quality as always. Do continue the excellent work!
Those are certainly fair critiques of the Caucasus front ITTL, so I'll try to respond to each of them if I can.
A) While I definitely agree that the Ottomans would have most of their Nizamis on the Balkan front given its greater importance, they also have more Nizamis ITTL so there are some available for the Caucasus front. I can't say how many there are exactly, but I do believe it would have a slight impact in favor of the Ottomans. Overall though, its definitely not a game changer for them.

B) Well the best way to get loot is to take it by force.;) Its also important to note that the Russians have pushed further west than OTL where they were largely on the defensive in the Caucasus (aside from their attack on Kars). While I don't have the exact figures for the demographics of the Erzurum Eyalet, my general understanding is that the further west you go the more Muslims there are, so these irregulars likely have more of a vested interest in opposing the Russians. That being said, you are definitely right in that the irregulars over performed in this last part, so I'll probably go back and revise their impact down a bit.

C) I will point out that the Ottomans had four armies numbering around 130,000 men at the start of this war, in OTL they had roughly 120,000 men and it only dropped to 75,000 after nearly two years of fighting. Their numbers ITTL have also been reduced by disease, desertion and battle losses, but they still have a decent number of men for defensive actions. You are definitely right though, that they should probably be lower given the defeats they've had here, so I'll revise this downward to better reflect their deteriorating situation.

D) I don't really have a good reason for this one, but I'd assume their scouts would be just as good ITTL as they were in OTL near Kars.

Overall, I'm inclined to revise the last section of this part, changing it from a catastrophic Russian defeat to a pyhhric Russian victory with them taking Erzincan and thus securing the Erzurum Valley as you proposed, but with high Russian losses and the campaigning season largely spent.
 
I wonder what concessions the Russians will push for after the wars end? It seems that it will be a Russian victory, albeit not a very dominant or decisive one. Maybe some border adjustments in the Caucasus region. In the Balkans, my guess is that Wallachia and Moldavia will become independent or drift into the Russian orbit, Bulgaria might become a semi-independent state or have territory outright annexed by Russia based on the 1856 Russian army's performance, Serbia might gain independence or additional territory as well.
Those are some of the possibilities that a peace treaty might entail, of course other changes could also occur as well.
 

formion

Banned
@Earl Marshal , your reply covers every question I raised in a most satisfactory way, thank you!

A pyrrhic russian victory that leaves them in control of most of the Erzurum vilayet is indeed the most plausible scenario. I dont think they could have achieved much more in any case.

Once more, thanks for the well-thought reply!

Here is a nice map of the 1915 Armenian population. I think it would be more or less the same geographic distribution in the mid 19th century, although the Hamidian Massacres may have changed it a bit.

 
I must say, imo my favorite19th century timeline is this due to your details and description that makes it almost feel like real history.
My favourite pre 19th century timeline is age of miracles tho so I guess I'm just a greekophile
 
I wonder what concessions the Russians will push for after the wars end? It seems that it will be a Russian victory, albeit not a very dominant or decisive one. Maybe some border adjustments in the Caucasus region. In the Balkans, my guess is that Wallachia and Moldavia will become independent or drift into the Russian orbit, Bulgaria might become a semi-independent state or have territory outright annexed by Russia based on the 1856 Russian army's performance, Serbia might gain independence or additional territory as well.
Those are some of the possibilities that a peace treaty might entail, of course other changes could also occur as well.
Using the OTL Treaty of San Stefano as a reference, they will likely take the remainder of the Kars Eyalet, parts of the Trabzon Eyalet and a large chunk off the Erzurum Eyalet. In the Balkans, Wallacia and Moldavia will almost certainly fall under Russian suzerainty, either as nominally independent states or as Russian protectorates. Serbia will probably increase its autonomy or it might gain its independence, I haven't decided which way I want to go with this just yet, but it will definitely fall under the Russian sphere of influence. Elsewhere, Russia will likely annex the Circassian Confederation and the Caucasian Imamate, and they will probably expand their influence in Central Asia too.

There is also Persia and Greece to consider as well. Although Qajari Persia was content with their western border and had signed a treaty with the Ottoman Empire settling their territorial disputes prior to the war, I'm sure they wouldn't mind a few minor adjustments to the border in their favor. More than likely though, it will be rather minor adjustments. I would also expect Russia to support Greece's territorial advancement as well. Even though they didn't join the war and supported the British to an extent, Greece is still an ally of Russia and its expansion would come at the expense of the Turks. As such, I don't see them opposing Greek expansion into Thessaly and Epirus especially and would likely push them to the maximum extent.

@Earl Marshal , your reply covers every question I raised in a most satisfactory way, thank you!

A pyrrhic russian victory that leaves them in control of most of the Erzurum vilayet is indeed the most plausible scenario. I dont think they could have achieved much more in any case.

Once more, thanks for the well-thought reply!

Here is a nice map of the 1915 Armenian population. I think it would be more or less the same geographic distribution in the mid 19th century, although the Hamidian Massacres may have changed it a bit.

After taking your previous comment into account, I decided to revise the ending of the last chapter so that the Russians take Erzincan, but are unable to continue going forward due to exhaustion, high casualties, and the arrival of Winter.

Also, thank you for the map it will definitely come in handy in the near future.


wonderful update !
Thank you, I'm glad you enjoyed it!

I must say, imo my favorite19th century timeline is this due to your details and description that makes it almost feel like real history.
My favourite pre 19th century timeline is age of miracles tho so I guess I'm just a greekophile
Thank you very much, I really appreciate that. I will say that I'm definitely not the most knowledgeable on the 19th Century on this forum and there are definitely better timelines than mine, but I do as much research as I can and I try to make each chapter as detailed as possible.
Basileus444's Age of Miracles Timeline is one of my favorites too and it actually inspired me to join this forum and write my own timeline.
 
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Using the OTL Treaty of San Stefano as a reference, they will likely take the remainder of the Kars Eyalet, parts of the Trabzon Eyalet and a large chunk off the Erzurum Eyalet. In the Balkans, Wallacia and Moldavia will almost certainly fall under Russian suzerainty, either as nominally independent states or as Russian protectorates. Serbia will probably increase its autonomy or it might gain its independence, I haven't decided which way I want to go with this just yet, but it will definitely fall under the Russian sphere of influence. Elsewhere, Russia will likely annex the Circassian Confederation and the Caucasian Imamate, and they will probably expand their influence in Central Asia too.

There is also Persia and Greece to consider as well. Although Qajari Persia was content with their western border and had signed a treaty with the Ottoman Empire settling their territorial disputes prior to the war, I'm sure they wouldn't mind a few minor adjustments to the border in their favor. More than likely though, it will be rather minor adjustments. I would also expect Russia to support Greece's territorial advancement as well. Even though they didn't join the war and supported the British to an extent, Greece is still an ally of Russia and its expansion would come at the expense of the Turks. As such, I don't see them opposing Greek expansion into Thessaly and Epirus especially and would likely push them to the maximum extent.


After taking your previous comment into account, I decided to revise the ending of the last chapter so that the Russians take Erzincan, but are unable to continue going forward due to exhaustion, high casualties, and the arrival of Winter.

Also, thank you for the map it will definitely come in handy in the near future.



Thank you, I'm glad you enjoyed it!


Thank you very much, I really appreciate that. I will say that I'm definitely not the most knowledgeable on the 19th Century on this forum and there are definitely better timelines than mine, but I do as much research as I can and I try to make each chapter as detailed as possible.
Basileus444's Age of Miracles Timeline is one of my favorites too and it actually inspired me to join this forum and write my own timeline.
you're welcome ;)
 
Using the OTL Treaty of San Stefano as a reference, they will likely take the remainder of the Kars Eyalet, parts of the Trabzon Eyalet and a large chunk off the Erzurum Eyalet. In the Balkans, Wallacia and Moldavia will almost certainly fall under Russian suzerainty, either as nominally independent states or as Russian protectorates. Serbia will probably increase its autonomy or it might gain its independence, I haven't decided which way I want to go with this just yet, but it will definitely fall under the Russian sphere of influence. Elsewhere, Russia will likely annex the Circassian Confederation and the Caucasian Imamate, and they will probably expand their influence in Central Asia too.

There is also Persia and Greece to consider as well. Although Qajari Persia was content with their western border and had signed a treaty with the Ottoman Empire settling their territorial disputes prior to the war, I'm sure they wouldn't mind a few minor adjustments to the border in their favor. More than likely though, it will be rather minor adjustments. I would also expect Russia to support Greece's territorial advancement as well. Even though they didn't join the war and supported the British to an extent, Greece is still an ally of Russia and its expansion would come at the expense of the Turks. As such, I don't see them opposing Greek expansion into Thessaly and Epirus especially and would likely push them to the maximum extent.


After taking your previous comment into account, I decided to revise the ending of the last chapter so that the Russians take Erzincan, but are unable to continue going forward due to exhaustion, high casualties, and the arrival of Winter.

Also, thank you for the map it will definitely come in handy in the near future.



Thank you, I'm glad you enjoyed it!


Thank you very much, I really appreciate that. I will say that I'm definitely not the most knowledgeable on the 19th Century on this forum and there are definitely better timelines than mine, but I do as much research as I can and I try to make each chapter as detailed as possible.
Basileus444's Age of Miracles Timeline is one of my favorites too and it actually inspired me to join this forum and write my own timeline.
It’s great to see this Update Earl Marshal! Having not seen what the next year brings that all seems likely to me. Russia might be able to push for a little more depending on how apparent it is the British need to peace out immediately, as that gives them an upper hand. But then we have to consider that Russia is also bleeding manpower at a rather alarming rate. I’m sure you’ll work it all out in a way that makes sense.

I could definitely see the Russians pushing for minor adjustments to gain some favor with Persia And Greece as well. I doubt Russia Is happy about Greece being neutral and helping to supply an enemy, Greece is also probably Russia’s most natural ally against the Turks so it makes sense to keep relations good.

I’m already looking forward to the next update.
 
Very nice update, it looks like the Allies and the Russians are bleeding each other dry before the upcoming Russian victory, meaning that not only will the Ottomans be greatly weakened for years to come, the general expenditure of resources by these major powers will leave the field more open to influence from smaller players like Greece. Excited to see where this goes!
 
It’s great to see this Update Earl Marshal! Having not seen what the next year brings that all seems likely to me. Russia might be able to push for a little more depending on how apparent it is the British need to peace out immediately, as that gives them an upper hand. But then we have to consider that Russia is also bleeding manpower at a rather alarming rate. I’m sure you’ll work it all out in a way that makes sense.

I could definitely see the Russians pushing for minor adjustments to gain some favor with Persia And Greece as well. I doubt Russia Is happy about Greece being neutral and helping to supply an enemy, Greece is also probably Russia’s most natural ally against the Turks so it makes sense to keep relations good.

I’m already looking forward to the next update.

Panslavism is on the rise already. Russia will be increasingly turning towards the Bulgarians and Serbs at Greek cost. It is not that Greece and Russia will be getting outright hostile but still between Bulgaria and Greece Russia will tend to prefer the former usually. And this brings us to the interesting question of what happens to Bulgaria TTL. If the Russians advance south of the Danube an autonomous Bulgarian principality, bordered say at the Balkan mountains makes sense.

For Serbia and Montenegro I think both should become independent with their 1878 borders.
 
Is Kosovo Albanian majority or is it more like a plurality. If Serbia ends up with Kosovo early in case of an Ottoman disaster in Balkans, It might result in a Serbian majority Kosovo
 
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Is Kosovo Albanian majority or is it more like a plurality. If Serbia ends up with Kosovo early in case of an Ottoman disaster in Balkans, It might result in a Serbian majority Kosovo

If memory serves it was roughly 60-40 in 1912 and 150,000 Serbs had migrated out after 1876. So there might be a Serb plurality at the moment. Or not.
 
There is also Persia and Greece to consider as well. Although Qajari Persia was content with their western border and had signed a treaty with the Ottoman Empire settling their territorial disputes prior to the war, I'm sure they wouldn't mind a few minor adjustments to the border in their favor. More than likely though, it will be rather minor adjustments. I would also expect Russia to support Greece's territorial advancement as well. Even though they didn't join the war and supported the British to an extent, Greece is still an ally of Russia and its expansion would come at the expense of the Turks. As such, I don't see them opposing Greek expansion into Thessaly and Epirus especially and would likely push them to the maximum extent.
Problem is, Turkey really isn't inclined with sympathy towards any Greek claims considering they already had to peel off some clay for keeping them neutral, without their input in anyway, so them giving up more for Greece? Yeah no.
 
Very nice update, it looks like the Allies and the Russians are bleeding each other dry before the upcoming Russian victory, meaning that not only will the Ottomans be greatly weakened for years to come, the general expenditure of resources by these major powers will leave the field more open to influence from smaller players like Greece. Excited to see where this goes!
Thank you, I'm glad you enjoyed it. This war is definitely working in Greece's favor as it managed to secure quite a bit of territory and money in return for its neutrality and logistical support.

Panslavism is on the rise already. Russia will be increasingly turning towards the Bulgarians and Serbs at Greek cost. It is not that Greece and Russia will be getting outright hostile but still between Bulgaria and Greece Russia will tend to prefer the former usually. And this brings us to the interesting question of what happens to Bulgaria TTL. If the Russians advance south of the Danube an autonomous Bulgarian principality, bordered say at the Balkan mountains makes sense.

For Serbia and Montenegro I think both should become independent with their 1878 borders.
I definitely agree with this, my point was more that Russia would support Greece's current claims as established in the 1855 Treaty of Constantinople, namely Epirus, Thessaly, and the Dodecanese Islands. They won't actively support Greece expansion beyond that however, as it would conflict with their own claims to Constantinople and the Straits, or their proxies' claims in Macedonia and Thrace.

Problem is, Turkey really isn't inclined with sympathy towards any Greek claims considering they already had to peel off some clay for keeping them neutral, without their input in anyway, so them giving up more for Greece? Yeah no.
Oh I certainly agree that the Ottomans will not give up more land willingly, if Greece wants to expand further it will have to do so by force of arms. I was merely suggesting that Russia would support Greece's current claims to Thessaly, Epirus and the Dodecanese Islands as agreed to under the 1855 Treaty of Constantinople, not that they would support their claims to other lands such as Macedonia, Thrace, or the Straits region.
 
I wonder if now Egypt would do a similar thing as in Greek War of Independence. They demand Syria, Hejaz and Damascus permanently plus more autonomy for exchange of their good quality troops especially now that the Ottomans need troops in the East desperately. That would change a lot on that front maybe even a counterattack. Still the Sepoy Rebellion would impact British involvement but I doubt they will withdraw their current troops from Silistra maybe they send less reinforcements on that front.

The impact of this war is gonna be huge for the Ottomans even if they somehow turn the tables ,which is unlikely. They have lost thousands of men and material and they are in deep debt as well so that doesn't help either. Dark times ahead for them indeed.

This war though is not like OTL Crimean war yet, although I see the parallels with the siege of Silistra, so maybe the lessons learned from OTL Crimean war won't be learned here which would impact later wars mainly in early trench warfare and more possibly the American Civil war which comes closer and closer.

Anyways great update it was worth the wait as every other update. I would suggest maybe to cut your updates in smaller bits and giving them a week at a time so we have the updates and you will have the time. But that is up to you.
 

formion

Banned
Thing is the Allies are running out of reserves.

The British are much more heavily involved TTL. That means much more casualties as well. Cholera, typhus and dysentery kill up to 10 times more men than russian bullets and shells. I expect all the involved armies of the 1855 danubian campaign to have melted away by the 1855-1856 winter. The blood tax for Britain is catastrophic and they will have to decide if the last trained reserves would be sent either in the Balkans or India. India seems the natural choice. If they send army reinforcements in the Balkans and it will be a big if, I expect it to be in battalions and not in brigades/divisions.

The same goes for the Ottomans. The theoretical 150,000 nizam regulars of 1854 should have almost all be either dead or wounded/incapacitated. The same goes for the majority of the trained reservists. At least in contrast to the British, the Ottomans can send waves of semi-trained men to man the trenches, although at a nightmarish cost.

The russian army will have melted as well mostly from disease. At least the Russians can send another 200k in the Danube. They cannot arm with proper equipment and logistically support hundreds of thousands of men in the front in a single season. However, they can send every year a new 200k army in the Balkans for two more campaigning seasons.
 
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