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Old 12-04-2012, 08:03 PM   #1
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Default What If: Pearl Harbor

I am wondering what would have happened if Japan had never bombed Pearl Harbor?

The scenario is this:

Admiral Yamamoto, the mastermind behind many of Japan's early naval victories, convinces the Imperial Japanese Navy and the Emperor to leave the US alone, letting them remain isolated. The attack never comes, US holdings in the Pacific are ignored and by-passed, and no declaration of war is delivered.

Please remain focused on the topic, not on the politics. I would prefer a civilized discussion on the topic above.

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Old 12-10-2012, 10:25 PM   #2
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Default Pearl Harbor?

Ok, I'll play. First, if Pearl Harbor had never happened, the American people would have remained divided about joining WW II. Unless some other act galvanized the US, I think we would have stayed out of the War. Perhaps if the Germans won their attempt to bring Britain to their knees we might have seen a clear cause to declare war on the Axis powers, but I think Hitler would have to have attacked the US overtly for us to take any real action. Our lack of direct involvement would probably have meant the Britain would have to bow to the Nazis- without the US forces, I think Hitler could have succeeded in his bid to conquer England. As a side, IIRC Hitler declared war on Russia after the US joined the War; if he hadn't decided to invade Russia and the US wasn't willing to join the fray, conquering England would have been well within the Germans' abilities. It is possible also that Hitler would have expanded his horizons once the British were defeated. He might have made a bid to openly ally with a South American country, as a means to harass the Western Hemisphere. This would be a big leap, and I'm just musing, but given Hitler's grandiose visions, one could never rule out any wild schemes Hitler might have dreamed up. One thing I think is probable; I don't think Hitler wanted to attack the US. He was all too aware of our industrial might, and he was upset about the Japanese attacks. Hitler wanted the US to stay on the sidelines, this has been documented. Assuming the the Germans forced the British to surrender, he might have taken any number of British territories from them. Hong Kong, India, who knows what the Nazis might have seized as booty. I can imagine the Germans getting access to the Middle East oil supplies, which would have enabled their forces to control Europe without worrying about powering their land, air and sea forces. It is possible that, without US intervention, that Hitler might have established a 'thousand year Reich', although my guess is that the Nazi regime wouldn't have lasted for much more than a decade or two. The Russians, and the US, might well decide to play nice with the Germans, but it's more likely that at some point after the War was over, that an assassination of the Fuehrer would have succeeded, and I believe that once their leader was dead, their vice grip on Europe would gradually lessen. By the end of the 20th century, it's possible that Britain, France, and some of the other countries conquered by the Germans might find the willpower, and the leadership, to shake off the Nazi governments.
Well, you did ask for opinions, and of course you may think mine is wrong, but it's an interesting subject. Oh, and of course the Germans were trying very hard to build a nuclear bomb; had the Allies not had the luck of stopping this, the threat to the US of being 'nuked' would be a key moment. We could have gone either way-- deciding to sign a non-aggression pact, or declaring War on the Germans... another topic.

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