How the Allies Could have Prevented the Rise of Hitler and the Jewish Holocaust Part 4

This is Part 4 of a 4 series. Part 3 can be accessed here.

No Pacific War between the US and Japan

In actual history, following US President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s July 1941 imposition of the crushing US-UK-Dutch oil embargo that, had it been continued for over a year, would have left Japan unable to sail its warships, Japan offered to withdraw from China (excluding Manchuria and Jehol province) and Indochina as a last ditch effort to avoid war with the United States. In light of an alliance between Britain and a democratically-led Germany against the Soviet Union, President Roosevelt would not have been obsessed with finding a way to provoke the Japanese to engage in a ‘surprise attack’ on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 as ‘a back door to war’ to galvanize an anti-war public and anti-war Congress into declaring war on Nazi Germany. Accordingly, he would likely have accepted the Japanese peace offer to withdraw its forces from China and Indochina. At that point, the Japanese would have been left with only one remaining option to expand their empire, which would have been by joining the war, then underway, against the Soviet Union in return for tacit Allied support for her territorial claims on Eastern Siberia and perhaps (Outer) Mongolia. After withdrawing its forces from China, Japan would likely have invaded the Soviet Far East in early 1942 in an attempt to seize control of its oil reserves to try to become self-sufficient in fuel oil so that the U.S. could never again force it to withdraw from its imperial conquests.

Following a Japanese declaration of war and likely rapid initial advances, Stalin would have most likely sought a separate peace either with the Western Allies or Imperial Japan to give him time to concentrate on defeating one enemy and rebuild his military strength to begin a counteroffensive to regain lost territory in a few years’ time. Given the fact that Stalin’s greatest fear was the loss of the Soviet capitol city of Moscow which was the effective center of his control of the USSR, his most likely choice would have been to request an armistice from the Western Allies to allow him the chance to repel the weaker Japanese enemy in the East. Japan likely would have captured much of the Soviet Far East and Mongolia but then the Soviets would have used their numerical and qualitative advantage in tanks to recapture most lost ground in addition to Japanese-held Manchuria while the Japanese would likely have been able to retain control of Korea, the Kamchatka Peninsula and Sakhalin Island due to their naval superiority.

However, Stalin’s inability to invade Japan’s main islands due to Japan’s naval supremacy likely would have caused him to seek a peace based upon a return to prewar borders which Japan likely would’ve accepted, while attempting to annex the oil-rich territories of northern Sakhalin Island and the Kamchatka Peninsula as part of any peace agreement. Whether or not Japan was successful in retaining control of this Soviet territory, the Empire of the Rising Sun likely would have endured into the 1960’s or perhaps even 1970’s at which point Japan would have been pressured to grant independence to its remaining colonial possessions as were the British, Dutch, Belgian, Spanish, Portuguese, French and Italian Empires.

A Grand Anti-Soviet Alliance is Formed to Repel Future Soviet Aggression

The Soviet war of aggression, along with German, British and French military interventions in defense of the East European nations invaded by Stalin’s Red Army, would likely have helped to unite Europe with the formation of a Grand Anti-Soviet Alliance consisting of Germany, Britain, France, Poland, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Romania, Czechoslovakia and Fascist Italy (which would likely have remained under the control of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini much longer than in actual history). Additionally, Turkey, Austria, Bulgaria and Nationalist Spain might have joined the alliance at some point along with Imperial Japan and Germany’s historic ally, Nationalist China, after the Sino-Japanese War had ended. This wartime military alliance might very well have persisted or even been formalized into a more permanent European defense alliance similar to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization after the war ended (but notably without the United States of America as a member) or even a more global military alliance if it included Nationalist China and Japan. However, it likely would have proven far less cohesive, with non-binding mutual defense obligations and without a joint command structure given near certain Anglo-French refusal to serve under a German Supreme Commander.

A new constitutional republic of Russia-Ukraine could have been formed from the formerly Soviet territory ceded by Stalin under the peace treaty, as a German protectorate (similar to Slovakia in actual history), possibly including much or most of eastern Poland, which was ethnically Russian and Ukrainian, pending the results of a plebiscite. The Russian, Ukrainian and Don Cossack Liberation Armies, consisting of as many as 3-6 million captured Red Army troops, could have helped defend this new republic against future Soviet aggression.

This new European defense alliance could have defended the newly-independent eastern frontier republics against any future Soviet aggression, with the Germans helping Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Russia-Ukraine to construct a new fortified defense line along their eastern frontiers and helping to train and equip their armies with modern tanks and combat aircraft defended by its own permanent military garrisons. Such an alliance might have resulted in Germany eventually equaling the Soviet Union as the most dominant military power in Europe as Germany helped to lead an alliance of states, some of which, like the Baltic states and Russia-Ukraine, would have been almost entirely dependent on its military support for their future existence.

Stalin likely would have sought to resume the war against the Western Allies in the 1944-1946 timeframe after he had rebuilt his forces but given the threat of resumption a two-front war he would have wanted to sign a Non-Aggression Pact with Japan first, which Japanese likely would have agreed to rather than risk losing another war. He would then likely have first tried to reconquer Russia-Ukraine and perhaps other lost territories once he had rebuilt his forces, but then might have encountered modernized German and allied forces and German jet fighters. If Stalin had restricted the war to the territories he lost at the end of the first Soviet war–Russia-Ukraine and perhaps Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan–Britain and France might have opted not to intervene militarily producing uncertain results.

A democratically-led Germany that had fought alongside Britain and France in a Second World War fought against the Soviet Union, would likely have seen further Allied support for its desires to annex ethnically German territories of Austria and the Sudetenland, which might have been allowed to hold plebiscites and vote whether to join Germany, following the war. In addition, French and especially British leaders would have been much more likely to return some or all of the German African and Pacific colonies they and Australia had seized following Germany’s defeat in World War I.

After the armistice was signed, the Germans might have formed a customs union with Italy, Spain, Turkey and their east European allies as the Germans had planned to do after World War I had the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk been allowed to remain in force, except on more fair and equal terms. This customs union would have been similar to the European ‘Common Market’ which was set up in 1957. Britain and France likely would have declined to join, perhaps forming their own customs union along with French colonies and the dominions of the British Commonwealth. However, Nationalist China might have joined such a German-Italian-led customs union as an associate member. Germany would then likely have become an economic, technological, industrial and potentially a nuclear superpower.

Germany Fights the Cold War Against Communism Instead of U.S.

Had Germany been led by a series of center-left coalition governments following World War I (as was the case from 1918-1933), there would have been no persecution of the Jews by the German government. Under these circumstances, renowned nuclear physicist and German Jewish scientist Albert Einstein, along with other Jewish scientists, might have continued to work at the Prussian Academy of Sciences rather than emigrating to the U.S. in 1933 and may have urged German, rather than American, leaders to begin developing the atomic bomb in 1939 in order to ensure the defense of Europe against Soviet aggression, perhaps leading Germany to be the first to develop the atomic bomb in the mid or more likely late 1940’s timeframe. The Germans could then have  tested an atomic bomb whenever they ended up developing it at one of their Pacific island atolls as the U.S. did after the war or alternatively at a remote Arctic location such as Franz-Josef Island in the Barents Sea. However, had a right-wing government been elected in 1940 that passed discriminatory laws against Jewish employment then Einstein likely would have emigrated at that time dealing a major blow to the fledgling German atomic bomb program.

This might have been followed by a Cold War, not between the United States and the Soviet Union, but between Germany and its allies (in a sort of alternate history NATO alliance) and a Soviet Union that was still a military superpower. In this alternate history Cold War, both sides might have developed nuclear weapons and engaged in building up their respective nuclear arsenals, but it would be one in which the Cold War demarcation line was not in central Germany but rather likely one stretching from Murmansk in the north to Rostov in the south. Additionally, had Britain fought a war less than half the length of the one it fought in actual history, the brunt of which was born by Germany rather than by herself, the British Empire might have endured substantially longer.

Nationalist China Wins the Chinese Civil War

In actual history, the Allied victory over Germany in World War II led to the Soviet takeover of Eastern Europe at Yalta while Japan’s defeat in the Pacific War led to the Communization of mainland China, which alone cost the lives of at least sixty million innocent people (not counting an estimated 800 million forced abortions and infanticides thus far) mass-murdered by the Communists. Both of these Communist victories likely would have likely been averted had Germany been granted a negotiated peace settlement following the First World War due to the absence of any German military aggressions.

From 1926-1937, the Germans provided extensive training and substantial military assistance to Chiang Kai Shek’s National Revolutionary Army helping to organize it into a modern fighting force and providing much needed assistance with Chinese military-industrial modernization, which greatly increased their ability to resist the Japanese invaders. This assistance was only ended reluctantly by Hitler’s decision to accept Japan’s offer to sign the Tripartite Pact in 1937 if Germany ceased all military aid to the Chinese. A negotiated peace agreement permitting continued German tank and aircraft production could have enabled the Germans to not only train and provide small arms, artillery and trucks to the Nationalist Chinese, but to sell them tanks and combat aircraft as well. Without Hitler, the Germans would have felt no need to ally with or appease the Japanese by cutting off military assistance to their Chinese allies.

The withdrawal of all Japanese forces from most of mainland China would have provided a golden opportunity for the Nationalist Chinese, led by Generalissimo Chiang Kai Shek, to defeat Communist Chinese dictator Mao Tse Tung’s Red Army once and for all at a time when they were still very weak. In this objective, the Nationalists would have been greatly aided by a resumption of robust German military assistance, which would have been previously blocked by the Japanese occupation of Chinese port facilities. Nationalist China likely would have seized control of all of modern-day China including Sinkiang and Tibet with the exception of Manchuria and Jehol province (which were then part of Manchukuo, a Japanese puppet state), which would have likely remained under Japanese control (unless it was conquered by the Soviets), while Mongolia would have likely remained under Soviet control. The Germans could have also aided their Chinese allies in greatly expanding their military-industrial base to mass produce their own weapons. Any resulting alliance between Nationalist China and a democratically-led Germany would likely have been enduring. Furthermore, a Nationalist victory over the Communists (followed by the eventual return of Manchuria to Nationalist control) would have, in the absence of Communist China’s infamous ‘one-child’ policy, likely increased the population of China from 1.38 billion to nearly 2.25 billion by 2020. This, along with free-enterprise based economic reforms, would have likely enabled Nationalist China to eclipse the U.S. and Germany as the world’s largest economy far earlier than Communist China was able to do in actual history.

A better and more peaceful world

In conclusion, a negotiated, compromise peace to end World War I would likely have resulted in the saving not only of tens of millions of people who died in World War II but it also would have saved the lives of 60-65 million innocent people who were mass murdered by Communist China, North Korea, Cambodia and Vietnam. Rather, than have the outcome of World War II be to consign much of central Europe and all of Eastern Europe and mainland China to Communist enslavement, the outcome of the war would likely have been the liberation of the captive nations of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Belarus, Ukraine, Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan, while keeping central and eastern Europe free along with mainland China (other than Manchuria). The Jewish Holocaust would have been entirely averted leaving open the possibility of a Jewish state being founded with as many as three times the current population of Israel, though admittedly the impetus for founding the Jewish state would have been lessened without Nazi persecution and genocide. Furthermore, the principle of self-determination would have been far more respected as eighteen million ethnic Germans would not have been forced out of the homelands where their ancestors had settled centuries earlier as they were in 1945.

A just peace to follow the Great War also would likely have resulted in a much less interventionist United States of America that was much less involved, if at all, in fighting proxy wars in a world in which the Soviet Union and Japan were the sole aggressors in the 1930’s and 1940’s. In fact, the United States would not likely have ended up getting involved in the conflict at all, outside of arms shipments to its allies. While Germany would have ended up being much more powerful today and would likely have been among the first, if not the first nation to develop nuclear weapons, it would have likely been much more peaceful and far more dedicated to maintaining the world order established by the Great Powers following World War I. It also likely would have served, along with Nationalist China and Imperial Japan, as a powerful counterweight to Soviet aggression and would likely have replaced the U.S. as the primary protagonist of the Cold War, at least in terms of the defense of Europe against Communism, saving the U.S. a great deal of its precious blood and treasure which it ended up expending during the Cold War. Instead of having the U.S., Russia and Communist China as the three nuclear superpowers today, we would more likely have had the U.S., Russia and a Western-aligned, democratically-led Germany, since Communist China would not likely exist, again leading to a more peaceful and safer world. Japan, and subsequently Nationalist China, would also likely have joined the U.S., Britain, France, Germany and the Soviet Union as nuclear powers.

© David T. Pyne 2019

David T. Pyne, Esq. is a former U.S. Army combat arms and H.Q. staff officer with a M.A. in National Security Studies from Georgetown University. He currently serves as a Vice President of the Association of the United States Army’s Utah Chapter and as Utah Director of the EMP Caucus on National and Homeland Security. He can be reached at [email protected]

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