An alternate timeline by Althistorian 2005.
What if Sweden-Norway resisted Norwegian independence in 1905 and adopted a more expansionist foreign policy, eventually joining the Central Powers?
1905: (POD) Norway attempts to break away from the personal union with Sweden. The Swedo-Norwegian Army crushes the movement, and Sweden officially annexes Norway, recreating the Swedish Empire and leading to a more expansionist foreign policy on the lines of Germany and Austria-Hungary.
Meanwhile, the First Moroccan Crisis takes place and Sweden stays neutral at first, later joining the crisis in support of Germany after the Norwegian Rebellion is quelled. Also, the Russo-Japanese War takes place the same way as in OTL.
1908: Austria annexes Bosnia and Bulgaria declares independence from the Ottoman Empire. Russia and Serbia protest, but back down after Germany declares support for Austria.
1911: The Second Moroccan Crisis takes place and despite Swedish support for the Central Powers, Britain and France emerge victorious and France annexes Morocco. Meanwhile, the Italo-Turkish War starts and Italy gains the colony of Libya the following year.
1912: The First Balkan War erupts between the Balkan League (Serbia, Montenegro, Bulgaria, and Greece) on one side and the Ottoman Empire on the other. The Balkan League wins and gains lots of land.
1913: Bulgaria betrays Serbia and Greece, starting the Second Balkan War. Romania and the Ottoman Empire later join the war against Bulgaria and Bulgaria is defeated.
1914: Archduke Franz Ferdinand is assassinated in Sarajevo. Austria-Hungary blames Serbia, who denies any prior knowledge of the assassins. Declarations of war keep flying around and eventually most of Europe is at war. Sweden, however, manages to stay neutral for the time being. Later, German territories in Africa and the Pacific and occupied by British and Japanese allied forces.
1915: Italy and Romania join the Allies while Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire join the Central Powers. Serbia is defeated and Sweden also joins the Central Powers after Swedo-German negotiations are concluded.
The combined Swedo-German naval force breaks the North Sea blockade and occupies the English Channel, breaking Allied supply lines and freeing up German imports. The British Isles are later blockaded, and the Royal Navy is defeated, although a part of it manages to escape to the Pacific.
Meanwhile, the Swedish Army invades Russian Finland, forcing Russia to divert a large portion of its army to defend the area, which makes the Eastern Front a little easier for the Austrians and Germans and the Italian Front harder for Italy as Austria sends more forces there. Also, Germany tells the Ottoman Empire to send more troops to Africa and leave only 15% for defense of the Caucasus. The Ottoman Empire obliges.
1916: The Central Powers make big gains on all fronts, capturing Paris and defeating France. Great Britain is invaded from the north and troops are sent to protect Scotland. Meanwhile, Allied colonial troops face the increasingly strong Ottoman Empire. St. Petersburg is placed under siege and the Russian Tsar is evacuated to Moscow. Sino-German negotiations begin.
1917: London and St. Petersburg are captured, causing Britain and Russia to surrender. Communists take power in Russia at Moscow and begin peace negotiations with the Central Powers. Meanwhile, China joins the war as a Central Power and attacks Japan, an Allied power.
1918: Japan resists well, but German troops are mobilised and ready for an invasion.
1919: Once German troops successfully land on and conquer the islands of Ryukyu and Kyushu, Japan finally agrees to an armistice.
1920: The Berlin Peace Conference is held to decide the fate of the Allied Powers:
Berlin Peace Conference
Treaty of Potsdam
- Belgium will be annexed by Germany.
- Large parts of northern France will be ceded to Germany.
- France will pay a large sum of war reparations.
- French colonial possessions will be ceded to Germany, with the exception of French Madagascar and French Indochina, which will be ceded to Sweden.
- France will demilitarise and will only be allowed to have troops for self-defense.
Treaty of Weimar
- The UK will be split into England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland.
- Most British colonial possessions will be ceded to Germany, except for Egypt and Sudan, which will be ceded to the Ottoman Empire, and South Africa, which will be ceded to Sweden.
- Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, however, will gain complete independence under a government of their own choice.
- The global exchange currency will switch from the English pound to the German mark.
- Britain will pay war reparations.
Treaty of Regensburg
- Russia will cede Poland and Livonia (the Baltics) to Germany as puppet states.
- Russia will cede Belarus and Ukraine to Austria as puppet states.
- Russia will cede Finland (including Aland), Murmansk, and Karelia to Sweden.
- Russia will cede some territories in the Caucasus to the Ottoman Empire.
- Russia will pay war reparations.
Treaty of Erfurt
- Italy will cede Libya back to the Ottoman Empire.
- The rest of Italy's colonies will be ceded to Germany.
- Italy will cede the Venice region to Austria-Hungary.
- Italy will pay war reparations.
Treaty of Heidelburg
- Korea will be ceded to China and all Japanese Pacific territories will be ceded to Germany.
- Japan will pay war reparations.
- The League of Nations will be created to keep the peace.
Treaty of Bamburg
- Serbia will cede Macedonia to Bulgaria.
- Austria will annex Albania, Montenegro, and the remainder of Serbia.
- Greece will cede land to Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire.
- Greece will pay war reparations.
- Romania will become an Austrian puppet state.
1921: Austria-Hungary collapses and breaks into civil war due to the central government having to deal with existing pre-war ethnic tensions and new ethnic tensions caused by the new puppet states. The Austrian government declares the breakup of Austria-Hungary and relinquishes all jurisdiction over the empire to the German government.
Seeing this golden opportunity to unite all Germans in Germany, Kaiser Wilhelm jumps at it, annexing the German-speaking regions of Austria and mobilising the army to stabilize the empire.
1922: The territories of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire and it's former puppets are stabilised enough for Germany to reorganise the area. New countries are created according to ethnic boundaries:
- Czechoslovakia, an independent country made up of Czech and Slovak ethnic lands.
- Hungary, an independent country made of Hungarian ethnic lands.
- Yugoslavia, an independent country made up of Slovenian, Croatian, Serbian and Bosnian ethnic lands.
- Albania, an independent country made of Albanian ethnic lands.
- Ukraine, a former puppet, now an independent country.
- Belarus, a former puppet, now an independent country.
- Romania, a former puppet, now an independent country.
Polish, Ruthenian (Ukrainian), Italian, and Romanian ethnic lands are returned to their respective mother countries.
1924: French war reparation payment amounts are recalculated and reduced.
1927: Germany agrees to return French ethnic lands (including Wallonia but not Alsace-Lorraine) to France on the conditions that said lands are demilitarised and France pay a highly discounted price for the lands. Dutch ethnic lands in Flanders are sold to the Netherlands in return for some money and an alliance.
1929: The American stock market at Wall Street collapses, and despite not having participated in the Great War, the USA is still a driving force for the world economy anyway, so the Wall Street Crash brings down the global economy and France is hit the hardest.
1931: Japan, wanting to regain its pre-war glory, forges a naval incident where a Chinese battleship mistakenly attacks a Japanese fishing boat. Japan demands the Korean Peninsula as compensation, but China refuses. Japanese troops storm Korea and annex it back into the empire. China pays cash as compensation, but Japanese troops refuse to leave Korea.
1933: Due to the Great Depression caused by the Wall Street Crash, French Nationalists take power under Marshal Philippe Petain. Petain immediately seeks to abolish the Treaty of Potsdam and leaves the League of Nations.
1935: Japan creates a new excuse, this time to invade Manchuria with a stronger army and navy. China is once again forced to pay compensation to the "victims" and Japan once again refuses to leave the occupied Manchuria, and instead creates the puppet state Manchukuo. Meanwhile, Italy invades Ethiopia, but the invasion is overshadowed by the Japanese invasion of Manchuria.
1936: Following the international outcry caused by the Japanese invasion of Manchuria, after which the Japanese diplomatic strategy is clear, Petain uses it as a smokescreen to remilitarise Wallonia and northern France. Meanwhile, the Spanish Civil War breaks out and Japan leaves the League of Nations.
1937: All-out war breaks out between Japanese and Chinese troops following the Marco Polo Bridge Incident. Meanwhile, Petain tests out the new French air force in the Spanish Civil War, supporting the Nationalists.
1938: Due to the proximity of French support to the battlefields of the Spanish Civil War, the Nationalists win sooner and with less casualties.
1939: France and Italy sign the Pact of Steel, while the Netherlands are guaranteed by Germany and Sweden in response to French military growth prohibited by the Treaty of Potsdam. Later that year, France invades the Netherlands and annexes it while Spain and Japan join the Pact of Steel, later to be known as the Axis. A Swedo-German naval blockade is imposed on the French coast and an impenetrable defense line is mobilised on the entire western border of Germany. Meanwhile, Italy invades and annexes Albania.
1940: Petain, knowing the defense line is impenetrable, decides to invade Switzerland instead, using a strategy German newspapers are terming blitzkreig. In June, French troops surround the Hindenburg Line and trap Allied troops at Wilhelmshaven. The Allied troops are evacuated and while Italy invades and annexes Austria, the rest of Germany is defeated and a puppet state, known as Nuremburg Germany or the Third Reich, is installed under Adolf Hitler.
All former German puppet states take this opportunity to declare independence from Germany. They are then invaded and annexed by the Soviet Union before they can reorganise their armies, except for Poland, which becomes part of Nuremburg Germany. Meanwhile, Denmark is also invaded.
After defeating Germany, Italy invades Greece through Albania, but the invasion fails and Italy asks for French support. France then pressures Yugoslavia to join the Axis. The Yugoslavian government agrees at first, but then a coup happens, causing Yugoslavia to pull out of joining the Axis. This angers Petain, who immediately invades and overruns Yugoslavia. Greece is then invaded and overrun by Italo-French forces. Sensing that they are next on the list, Bulgaria and Romania ask to join the seemingly unstoppable Axis.
1941: In June, Operation Napoléon starts, and Axis troops invade the Soviet Union. The objective, however, is not to conquer the Soviet Union, but to open an invasion route to Sweden. Leningrad, however, proves to be a costly and deadly challenge for the Axis and they end up having to hold a costly siege of the city. Later, in October, the Axis try attacking Moscow, but they are beaten back due to the cold winter weather
In December, Japan attacks Pearl Harbor. The USA declares war on Japan and, as a result, the rest of the Axis declares war on the US. Meanwhile, back in June, the former Kaiser Wilhelm dies of a pulmonary embolus after being deposed in the previous year.
1942: The Axis starts a new offensive early in the year to try again to capture Stalingrad. However, they are beaten back due to Swedish reinforcements and the newly arrived Siberian army from Siberia in eastern Russia. Meanwhile, American troops arrive in South Africa en masse to support the Swedish colonial army.
Later, the Axis try to make another breakthrough by taking Leningrad, but they fail, causing the blockade to collapse. They decide to regroup on the pre-Operation Napoléon front line, but the Soviets manage to push them back afterward.
1943: Following a bloody campaign to capture all Axis territory in Africa, Swedo-American troops land in Sicily and prepare to invade the Italian Peninsula. The Italian Campaign, although important, is later overshadowed by other important events in the war. Italy switches sides later on and Petain moves to install an Italian puppet state in northern Italy while freeing Mussolini from the Allies. Meanwhile, Albania declares independence from Italy.
1944: On 6 June, Swedish and American troops land in Pomerania, having fooled the French into thinking the invasion was coming from Denmark since the Swedish navy guarded the Skagerrak Straits so tightly. Germany is liberated and the German government restored as the Fourth Reich while Soviet troops pour into the Balkans and Central Europe, secretly installing puppet governments in Bulgaria, Romania, Czechoslovakia, and Hungary. Meanwhile, the Italian puppet state is annexed into Italy, Yugoslavia is taken over by the Titoists, and Denmark is annexed into Sweden.
1945: With most of Europe occupied by the Allies now, Petain mounts a last stand in France. However, the Allies have no plans to enter France in 1945 because they're invading Spain now. Meanwhile, Switzerland regains independence and returns to neutrality. Japan later surrenders after the nuclear bombs are dropped.
1946: The Allies enter France and Petain commits suicide. France surrenders and war criminals are tried in Vichy. The pre-war Danish government attempts to regain control of Denmark, but the most they can do is get appointed as governors of the Danish provinces.
1947: France and Paris are separately divided into three occupation zones each: German, Swedish, and American. The USSR complains about not receiving it's own separate zone, but backs down in return for the Allies recognising Soviet puppet governments in Central Europe and the Balkans. Meanwhile, Spain and Italy have democratic governments installed and the United Nations is created to replace the failed League of Nations.
1948: A border dispute between Germany and the USSR is settled diplomatically, but it causes the overall political tension in Europe to rise.
1949: After a failed communist coup in Albania, the USA is worried that the Soviets might attempt to install more communist governments elsewhere. So finally, as a protective and potentially defensive measure, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) is set up by the USA, Sweden, Germany, and Iceland to prevent a communist takeover of Europe. Meanwhile, France is released from occupation and immediately admitted into NATO.
1950: England and Ireland join NATO.
1951: Spain and Italy join NATO.
1952: Greece turns communist after a long and bloody civil war. Meanwhile, the Ottoman Empire starts to collapse.
1953: Scotland and Wales join NATO. The USA helps the Ottoman government prepare a peaceful breakup of the empire. Meanwhile, Joseph Stalin dies.
1954: The Ottoman Empire is dissolved peacefully, so the Middle Eastern Treaty Organisation (METO) is set up to preserve peace in the region and to possibly fight against the Communists.
The Ottoman Empire is dissolved into Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Palestine, Arabia, Lebanon, and the Ottoman Kingdom of Turkey, all of which are members of METO, except Palestine. Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Yemen, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates eventually join METO after gaining independence from the Germans.
Meanwhile, interracial tensions between Arabs and Jews in Palestine are reignited as both sides fight for the creation of a Jewish state of Israel or the preservation of the existing Arab state of Palestine. This is the reason Palestine is denied entry to METO.
1955: The communist Sofia Pact is created as a response to the creations of NATO and METO. The members of the Sofia Pact are Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and the Soviet Union. Yugoslavia refuses to join despite being communist due to Tito's opposition to Soviet policies.
1958: A coup d'état known as the 14 July Revolution is led by Brigadier General Abd al-Karim Qasim. The revolt is strongly anti-imperial and anti-monarchical in nature and has strong socialist elements. Despite this, Qasim disapproves of Soviet policies and manages to balance the capitalist nature of METO with his socialist-leaning domestic policies.
1959: A communist revolution happens in Cuba.
1961: The Bay of Pigs invasion fails, raising tensions throughout the Caribbean and Latin America as a whole.
1962: The Cuban Missile Crisis ends with the nukes being shipped back to the Soviet Union.
1963: In February, a coup occurs and Colonel Abdul Salam Arif takes power. He later dies in 1966 and is succeeded by his brother, Abdul Rahman Arif, who is overthrown by the Ba'ath Party in 1968.
1964: A communist uprising occurs in Poland, a German province. NATO troops are sent to crush the uprising and the Poles are given extra autonomy.
1968: The Prague Spring happens in Czechoslovakia. However, in this timeline, the entire Sofia Pact (except the Soviet Union, of course) accepts the new ideas being promoted by Dubček, and when the Soviets decide to crack down on the reforms, they fight back. This starts the Opposition War. The war happens to coincide well with the Sino-Soviet border conflict, so Mao Zedong decides to declare support for the reformists (despite being as tyrannical as the Soviets himself), and declares war on the Soviet Union. Minor advances are made, but the Red Army is strong and not easily defeated.
Meanwhile, in America, President Johnson, seeing the Soviets busy trying to defend their motherland, decides to invade Cuba. The invasion is a resounding success, since the Soviets aren't able to carry out military actions against the US due to already being at war with China on one side and the reformists on the other. The successful invasion boosts LBJ's popularity very much and heavily damages the hippie movement. However, the Vietnam War eventually saps his popularity again and he decides not to run for reelection, right before the Primaries start.
Meanwhile, in Iraq, the Ba'ath Party takes power and Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr becomes the first Ba'athist president of Iraq.
1969: The PLA launches a huge offensive and captures a big portion of eastern Siberia. At around the same time, the Sofia Pact launches another offensive to the south. They attempt to reach Volgograd by employing the blitzkrieg tactics of the Axis due to being inferior in resources and military units. They capture the city, but Brezhnev announces that the USSR will not surrender unless Moscow is taken and increases troops in western Russia. Meanwhile, the Baltic SSRs declare independence and join the Sofia Pact, capturing Leningrad.
1970: The Sofia Pact is renamed the Opposition to raise morale. The Soviets are slightly infuriated and try launching an offensive to beat back the Opposition. However, the Opposition uses another tactic to beat the Soviets back from Leningrad and Volgograd: they send a fighting force to the front lines, but send another force to flank the Soviets from behind. Using this tactic and the blitzkrieg tactic, the Opposition captures Moscow and the Soviets are defeated. Meanwhile, the PLA beats the Soviets back to the Urals before news of the Soviet surrender reaches the East.
1971: The Soviet Union is broken up: The Belarussian and Ukrainian SSRs gain independence and join the Opposition. Eastern Siberia and the Central Asian SSRs are ceded to China and the remainder of the RSFSR gains independence as Russia and joins the Opposition. Later, Yugoslavia joins the Opposition and Albania joins NATO.
1974: The Carnation Revolution takes place in Portugal and Portugal joins NATO soon after.
1976: Mao Zedong dies of a heart attack. His successors, Hua Guofeng and Deng Xiaopeng, bring China into the Opposition.
1978: The Iranian Revolution takes place, and the Islamist revolutionaries, led by Ayatollah Khomeini, prepare for a war against Iraq.
1979: In July, Saddam Hussein becomes president of Iraq, which immediately leaves METO.
1980: The Opposition improves relations with NATO and METO, eventually forming a three-alliance coalition against the Islamists led by Iran. Meanwhile, after more than frequent cross-border raids between the two countries, Iraq declares war on Iran, starting the Iran-Iraq War.
1983: China encounters religious riots by the Buddhists and Muslims. Iran is later discovered to be selling weapons to the Muslim rioters to fight back against Chinese riot police, causing the newspapers and the international community to later declare that the Cold War is not over yet.
1985-7: Due to there not being a socialist government in Nicaragua (because the Soviet Union and Cuba both perished in the Opposition War), the Iran-Contra Scandal doesn't happen.
1989: After the Iran-Iraq War ends without a winner, Pakistan immediately asks for Iranian diplomatic (and possibly even military) assistance against India. Later, the Chinese army leaves Central Asia, and the Turkic Muslims declare the Caliphate of Turkestan.
1990: China and South Korea agree on a joint invasion of North Korea.
1991: After the Iran-Iraq War, Iraq is bankrupt. This happens to coincide with a period of dropping oil prices, causing Iraqi national revenue to plummet in addition to having to pay back debts. As a result, Iraq decides to invade Kuwait, causing all of METO to respond to the new threat. However, the Iraqi army is massive, and the combined armies of METO can only manage a stalemate at best. So despite their best efforts, METO is not able to break and liberate Kuwait (yet). NATO offers to help, but METO doesn't want to show such weakness in the face of the Iraqis.
1992: After a year of stalemate, METO breaks the stalemate and Iraq capitulates very soon after. Now METO has gotten a taste of war and is even more united than ever. They decide to direct their war mobilisation against the new Islamist Alliance of Iran, Turkestan, and Pakistan.
1993: Afghanistan is pressured into joining the Islamist Alliance.
1995: Despite their unity, METO has been severely weakened by the Gulf War against Iraq. The Islamists decide to use this to their advantage and immediately invade occupied Iraq after making a deal with Saddam Hussein, currently being held in a prison cell in Baghdad. METO declares war, causing NATO and the Opposition to rush to their aid. World War 3 has begun.
The Islamists make gains in Turkey and Iraq. They also conquer Kuwait (again!). However, Saddam Hussein is transferred to Istanbul before the Islamists reach Baghdad. The Islamists also make gains in India, China and Russia. Meanwhile, the first UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) is held in Berlin.
1996: The Islamists decide to "liberate" all of Iraq, so they launch an offensive to take Baghdad. Once there, they make the decision to unite under the New Abbasid Caliphate. They also occupy some regions of Turkey, Syria, and Arabia. Heavy fighting occurs in the East, but the Opposition handles the stalemate well and the Islamists don't manage a breakthrough.
1997: NATO troops finally arrive on the front lines. However, the Islamists are already handling a two-front war pretty well, so they don't make a major difference at first. The Islamists decide to push into Syria and Syria capitulates just as Abbasid troops are about to enter Damascus. The Allies now place priority on defending Arabia and the Caucasus, the main Allied oilfields.
1998: The Abbasid Caliphate sends most of it's western army into Arabia, hoping to capture valuable oil. However, Allied bombings and the Arabian army finally defeat them at the Battle of Mecca, in which Abbasid artillery accidently destroy the Mecca Stone, causing every other Muslim country to declare war on them. The army mutinies even after the artillerymen who carried out the bombardment are court-marshalled, and people throughout the Caliphate start rebelling.
Muslims across the world either zealously denounce the Abbasids as "fake Muslims" or start converting to other religions, especially in Palestine, where all Palestinian Arabs immediately decide to convert to Judaism, leading to a massive increase in Jews and Christians throughout the world. Buddhism and Hinduism benefit a little, but the Muslims generally decide not to convert to statue-worshipping religions. Some people even decide to start new religions, but those religions are mostly overshadowed by Judaism and Christianity, which benefit the most from this new development.
The Abbasid Caliphate swiftly collapses, and the Allies restore all pre-war borders, with the exception of the creation of Kurdistan.
1999: The world starts to calm down after the war, but the religious landscape has been heavily affected. There are significantly fewer Muslims in the world and significantly more Christians and Jews. Several countries have completely turned away from Islam altogether, and any remaining Muslims revise their religion and come up with conspiracy theories regarding the destruction of the Mecca Stone: some say the Allies framed the Abbasids, some say the Illuminati blew the Stone up, and many other theories are created.
Nonetheless, public sympathy for Muslims increases, even in the newly created Jewish state of Israel and in Christian countries around the world, where Muslims end up a religious minority, although some countries keep a Muslim majority by a slight margin.
2000: Y2K causes mass hysteria, but programming systems are all fixed within January. Aside from that, the UNRC (United Nations Religious Commission) is set up to help religious organisations.
2003: The influence of Islam is partially restored due to the efforts of the UNRC and various Islamic organisations.
No major incidents happen.