What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Discussions on alternate history, including events up to 20 years before today. Hosted by Terry Duncan.
Peter89
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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Peter89 » 29 Jun 2020 20:02

Terry Duncan wrote:
29 Jun 2020 14:01
I am not sure which book contained the following, it was likely The Sleepwalkers by Christopher Clark or The War That Ended Peace by Margaret MacMillan as I read both about the same time and own neither to check now, but it seems that Franz-Ferdinand consulted with Conrad about turning the army on Hungary to force a new agreement on them, presumably as he believed they would not accept his plan for Trialism without the use of force. Quite how practical this would be is another matter.
Well, it is lucky for all of us that he didn't try that. When Austria tried to attack Hungarian part of the Empire with the help of the rest of the Empire's nationalities, they've got defeated so badly on the field that they had to invite more Russian troops than the Russians sent against Napoleon.

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Futurist » 29 Jun 2020 20:23

Peter89 wrote:
29 Jun 2020 20:02
Terry Duncan wrote:
29 Jun 2020 14:01
I am not sure which book contained the following, it was likely The Sleepwalkers by Christopher Clark or The War That Ended Peace by Margaret MacMillan as I read both about the same time and own neither to check now, but it seems that Franz-Ferdinand consulted with Conrad about turning the army on Hungary to force a new agreement on them, presumably as he believed they would not accept his plan for Trialism without the use of force. Quite how practical this would be is another matter.
Well, it is lucky for all of us that he didn't try that. When Austria tried to attack Hungarian part of the Empire with the help of the rest of the Empire's nationalities, they've got defeated so badly on the field that they had to invite more Russian troops than the Russians sent against Napoleon.
You expect that the same thing would have happened had FF tried this, except this time without the Russians actually bailing out Austria? Of course, might the Germans be interested in bailing out Austria or would they prefer to deal with the new arrangement in their own way--as in, to leave Hungary alone just so long as it agrees to remain a German and Austrian ally?

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Peter89 » 30 Jun 2020 10:00

Futurist wrote:
29 Jun 2020 20:23
Peter89 wrote:
29 Jun 2020 20:02
Terry Duncan wrote:
29 Jun 2020 14:01
I am not sure which book contained the following, it was likely The Sleepwalkers by Christopher Clark or The War That Ended Peace by Margaret MacMillan as I read both about the same time and own neither to check now, but it seems that Franz-Ferdinand consulted with Conrad about turning the army on Hungary to force a new agreement on them, presumably as he believed they would not accept his plan for Trialism without the use of force. Quite how practical this would be is another matter.
Well, it is lucky for all of us that he didn't try that. When Austria tried to attack Hungarian part of the Empire with the help of the rest of the Empire's nationalities, they've got defeated so badly on the field that they had to invite more Russian troops than the Russians sent against Napoleon.
You expect that the same thing would have happened had FF tried this, except this time without the Russians actually bailing out Austria? Of course, might the Germans be interested in bailing out Austria or would they prefer to deal with the new arrangement in their own way--as in, to leave Hungary alone just so long as it agrees to remain a German and Austrian ally?
I expect nothing, Franz Joseph knew that an attack on the Transleithania meant the undoing of the Empire, it almost meant that at the first time. The Empire got broke at 1848/1849, and it slowly but surely descended into a decline. The Austrians wanted to leave this rotten, inheritently medieval project and join / rule the Great Germany, but Bismarck had different plans, so they stuck. What could they do? If they make alliances with the relatively loyal Slavic populations, they could only count on the Czechs, Croats, Slovenians and to some degree, the Slovaks (although it wasn't that clear, most of the Slovaks fought on the Hungarian side in 1848/1849, like the 8th (Coburg) Hussar Regiment). That wasn't enough, obviously. Giving autonomy to the Serbians, Italians, Romanians or the Polish meant that they will sonner or later get closer to their national states, so the best solution seemed to be the Compromise, so make peace with the Hungarians. It was a good but hard decision in 1867, but it didn't really work from like 1880's, when national energies became dominant in the Slavic populations as well.

In my opinion it could make sense that the Austrians eject the Hungarian-occupied territories from the Empire, and let them boil in their own bowl of soup. An independent Hungary (if all the historical borders were to be restored) was to be dissolved be external and internal forces, that is 100% sure. The low quality of Hungarian statecraft was already legendary in the medieval times (save for the Anjou period).

Czechia, Slovenia and Austria are still the best parts of Central Europe.

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Futurist » 01 Jul 2020 02:03

Do you think that Franz Ferdinand would actually allow Hungary to leave his empire?

As for Hungary losing its non-Hungarian territories, how exactly is this going to happen? Through massive social unrest and revolution, followed by external military intervention? I would think that Germany would try preserving Hungary's territorial integrity, no?

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Peter89 » 01 Jul 2020 12:36

Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 02:03
Do you think that Franz Ferdinand would actually allow Hungary to leave his empire?

As for Hungary losing its non-Hungarian territories, how exactly is this going to happen? Through massive social unrest and revolution, followed by external military intervention? I would think that Germany would try preserving Hungary's territorial integrity, no?
Transleithania was not solely occupied by Hungarians - in fact, the 1910 census, which was marred by quite a few problems, all of them favoring the Hungarian numbers, showed about 50% Hungarian population. So in the Hungarian political elite's mind, an ejection of the Hungarian-occupied territories meant an agression on the "Kingdom of Hungary", so war was inevitable. That's why Franz Ferdinand hated the Hungarians, because they were the stupid obstacle in the way of a stable Empire. But they've got what they deserved (and maybe more) for their hubris in 1918-1921.

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Terry Duncan » 01 Jul 2020 15:38

Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 02:03
Do you think that Franz Ferdinand would actually allow Hungary to leave his empire?
Not a chance! It would come to war at that point. What would be important is how much of the army remained loyal to Franz-Ferdinand and Conrad to try and force a settlement on Hungary. My guess is that Wilhelm would send troops to help at least, whilst Italy may try to use it as an excuse to add bits of the Hapsburg lands to theirs. Russia would do nothing, and neither would Serbia or Bulgaria given the Balkan Wars had exhausted them, pretty much only leaving Romania who may try annexing areas if things went badly for Austria.

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Futurist » 01 Jul 2020 21:47

Peter89 wrote:
01 Jul 2020 12:36
Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 02:03
Do you think that Franz Ferdinand would actually allow Hungary to leave his empire?

As for Hungary losing its non-Hungarian territories, how exactly is this going to happen? Through massive social unrest and revolution, followed by external military intervention? I would think that Germany would try preserving Hungary's territorial integrity, no?
Transleithania was not solely occupied by Hungarians - in fact, the 1910 census, which was marred by quite a few problems, all of them favoring the Hungarian numbers, showed about 50% Hungarian population. So in the Hungarian political elite's mind, an ejection of the Hungarian-occupied territories meant an agression on the "Kingdom of Hungary", so war was inevitable. That's why Franz Ferdinand hated the Hungarians, because they were the stupid obstacle in the way of a stable Empire. But they've got what they deserved (and maybe more) for their hubris in 1918-1921.
I'm aware that Hungary was only about half-Magyar up to 1918. My point here was, of course, that Hungary would not be willing to voluntarily compromise its territorial integrity.

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Futurist » 01 Jul 2020 21:48

Terry Duncan wrote:
01 Jul 2020 15:38
Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 02:03
Do you think that Franz Ferdinand would actually allow Hungary to leave his empire?
Not a chance! It would come to war at that point. What would be important is how much of the army remained loyal to Franz-Ferdinand and Conrad to try and force a settlement on Hungary. My guess is that Wilhelm would send troops to help at least, whilst Italy may try to use it as an excuse to add bits of the Hapsburg lands to theirs. Russia would do nothing, and neither would Serbia or Bulgaria given the Balkan Wars had exhausted them, pretty much only leaving Romania who may try annexing areas if things went badly for Austria.
Are you sure that Russia won't support the Hungarians in this conflict?

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by maltesefalcon » 03 Jul 2020 20:45

Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 21:48
Terry Duncan wrote:
01 Jul 2020 15:38
Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 02:03
Do you think that Franz Ferdinand would actually allow Hungary to leave his empire?
Not a chance! It would come to war at that point. What would be important is how much of the army remained loyal to Franz-Ferdinand and Conrad to try and force a settlement on Hungary. My guess is that Wilhelm would send troops to help at least, whilst Italy may try to use it as an excuse to add bits of the Hapsburg lands to theirs. Russia would do nothing, and neither would Serbia or Bulgaria given the Balkan Wars had exhausted them, pretty much only leaving Romania who may try annexing areas if things went badly for Austria.
Are you sure that Russia won't support the Hungarians in this conflict?
Conflict? What conflict? Sorry-I thought one of the preconditions of your ATL was peacetime. In that case, any scenerio and discussion thereof probably should reflect that.

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Futurist » 03 Jul 2020 23:07

maltesefalcon wrote:
03 Jul 2020 20:45
Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 21:48
Terry Duncan wrote:
01 Jul 2020 15:38
Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 02:03
Do you think that Franz Ferdinand would actually allow Hungary to leave his empire?
Not a chance! It would come to war at that point. What would be important is how much of the army remained loyal to Franz-Ferdinand and Conrad to try and force a settlement on Hungary. My guess is that Wilhelm would send troops to help at least, whilst Italy may try to use it as an excuse to add bits of the Hapsburg lands to theirs. Russia would do nothing, and neither would Serbia or Bulgaria given the Balkan Wars had exhausted them, pretty much only leaving Romania who may try annexing areas if things went badly for Austria.
Are you sure that Russia won't support the Hungarians in this conflict?
Conflict? What conflict? Sorry-I thought one of the preconditions of your ATL was peacetime. In that case, any scenerio and discussion thereof probably should reflect that.
I was responding to Terry Duncan's comment here.

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by maltesefalcon » 04 Jul 2020 02:17

Futurist wrote:
03 Jul 2020 23:07
maltesefalcon wrote:
03 Jul 2020 20:45
Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 21:48
Terry Duncan wrote:
01 Jul 2020 15:38
Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 02:03
Do you think that Franz Ferdinand would actually allow Hungary to leave his empire?
Not a chance! It would come to war at that point. What would be important is how much of the army remained loyal to Franz-Ferdinand and Conrad to try and force a settlement on Hungary. My guess is that Wilhelm would send troops to help at least, whilst Italy may try to use it as an excuse to add bits of the Hapsburg lands to theirs. Russia would do nothing, and neither would Serbia or Bulgaria given the Balkan Wars had exhausted them, pretty much only leaving Romania who may try annexing areas if things went badly for Austria.
Are you sure that Russia won't support the Hungarians in this conflict?
Conflict? What conflict? Sorry-I thought one of the preconditions of your ATL was peacetime. In that case, any scenerio and discussion thereof probably should reflect that.
I was responding to Terry Duncan's comment here.
Agreed. But I was offering a reminder, since your reply was offering an opinion on the fine points of a military action that the title implies should not take place at all.

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Futurist » 04 Jul 2020 02:19

maltesefalcon wrote:
04 Jul 2020 02:17
Futurist wrote:
03 Jul 2020 23:07
maltesefalcon wrote:
03 Jul 2020 20:45
Futurist wrote:
01 Jul 2020 21:48
Terry Duncan wrote:
01 Jul 2020 15:38


Not a chance! It would come to war at that point. What would be important is how much of the army remained loyal to Franz-Ferdinand and Conrad to try and force a settlement on Hungary. My guess is that Wilhelm would send troops to help at least, whilst Italy may try to use it as an excuse to add bits of the Hapsburg lands to theirs. Russia would do nothing, and neither would Serbia or Bulgaria given the Balkan Wars had exhausted them, pretty much only leaving Romania who may try annexing areas if things went badly for Austria.
Are you sure that Russia won't support the Hungarians in this conflict?
Conflict? What conflict? Sorry-I thought one of the preconditions of your ATL was peacetime. In that case, any scenerio and discussion thereof probably should reflect that.
I was responding to Terry Duncan's comment here.
Agreed. But I was offering a reminder, since your reply was offering an opinion on the fine points of a military action that the title implies should not take place at all.
Yes; I know. Terry offered a different perspective from my own, so I asked him to elaborate on his perspective.

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Futurist » 04 Jul 2020 22:01

In other words, I want to discuss my own perspective here but also listen to other people's perspectives about the same topic. :)

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by maltesefalcon » 05 Jul 2020 00:09

Futurist wrote:
04 Jul 2020 22:01
In other words, I want to discuss my own perspective here but also listen to other people's perspectives about the same topic. :)
I realize I am often somewhat pedantic at times...but I'm illustrating a point. If one changes/ignores the one key element of a topic, it's not really the same topic at all.

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Re: What does a peacetime demolition/break-up of Austria-Hungary look like?

Post by Peter89 » 05 Jul 2020 19:36

To go back to ontopic, the answer is no. Russia had no interest in the freedom of Central Europe.

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