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|WorldWar2.ro Forum > WW1 and Regional Wars (1912-1919) > If Romania would have joined the Central Powers|
|Posted by: Florin July 01, 2017 05:31 am|
| If Romania would have joined the Central Powers in 1916, would that had mattered in an important way ?
We all know that the Romanian army of 1916 can be labeled as a small army, compared with the main players of World War One. In the real history, in spite of the Brusilov offensive, the Somme offensive, the Italian offensive, the Battle of Verdun and Romania joining the war, the Central Powers survived and lasted 2 more years.
In spite of various engagements elsewhere, the Central Powers scrambled about 40 divisions and forced Romania to abandon two thirds of her territory. However, in an alternative scenario of Romania being lured into war to regain Bessarabia, these 40 divisions would have faced the Russian army, not the Romanian army, and the 500,000 Romanian soldiers would have joined them, instead of fighting with them.
Considering that in the real history Russia started to shake as Allied partner since 1917, could the entrance of Romania in the war determine Russia to bid for peace by the end of 1916, or early 1917 ?
With the U.S. still in the sidelines, that would have mattered indeed.
So, remember, what is above is a question and an invitation for comments, not an endorsement of an alternative scenario. Looking forward for interesting input and whishing you all the best,
|Posted by: Petre July 04, 2017 02:37 pm|
| Source - World Wide Web ...
During WW I, the two opposing sides, the Entente and Germany, tried to convince Romania to stand on its side. (And this despite the fact that before the war Bucharest was an ally of Berlin). One historical anecdote was connected with those events :
Kaiser Wilhelm asked the chief of the German General Staff - Moltke how he is preparing for a potential enter the war of Romania. The answer was :
"We do not care, Your Majesty, on whose side Romania will enter the war. If it enters ours, we will need 10 divisions to save it from defeat, if against us, then the same 10 divisions will be needed to defeat it. Therefore, there is no difference. "
|Posted by: Florin July 09, 2017 08:15 am|
I am aware of course that Romania signed in secret the alliance with the Central Powers and then betrayed it. Exactly what Italy did one year earlier. This is what is happening when governments sign treaties in secrecy, because they are aware that the popular sentiment is against the secret ally.
Regarding the joke, it may sound funny only for people not knowing history well, and I know that you are not among this kind of people.
The length of the frontiers needing to be defended by the Romanians in 1916 was twice the length of the Western Front, while the Romanians had a small fraction of the number of the allied British-French troops from that front.
Other things that you know very well:
After retreating in 1916 and giving away 2/3 of the country, in 1917 the Romanians held their line in several bloody battles.
From the two countries of the Entente Cordiale holding the line on the Eastern Front, Russia was the first to sue for peace in 1918. Romania followed suit 9 weeks later, simply because the Central Powers threatened that they will throw on her all forces made now available by the surrender of the Russians.
So, personally, I don't enjoy that joke and I believe that actually it was not created in the days of the Kaiser and Moltke, but rather by some armchair strategist from our days of computer games.
|Posted by: Agarici July 10, 2017 02:48 pm|
| There is a well-known historical anecdote in Ro (based on real facts) regarding the Kaiser's (German emperor Wilhelm the IInd) reaction to Romania's declaration of war to Austria-Hungary in 1916. The story was told by a lady from his entourage, who was also present when he was told that US entered the war. In the first instance he became pale, was visibly very affected and said that "all is lost, perhaps I should abdicate". In the latter he stayed positive and uttered that, due to the submarines, the American forces will not be able to reach Europe in order to influence the outcome of the conflict.
The changes made by him in the German Supreme Command, following Romania's siding with the Entente, show clearly that the act was not being taken lightly by the Germans.
|Posted by: Petre July 11, 2017 03:36 pm|
| A joke remains a joke, and I dont know its author.
An apprppriate translation is : For us it is equal, Your Majesty, on whose side Romania will enter the war.
The Ge. - Au. divisions were a problem for the Central Powers. They were brought from French Front, from Italian Front, from Turkey ... with some consequences.
September 1914 - Wilhelm II replaced Moltke with Falkenhayn.
The treaty with Germany was 1883, that is obsolete. And nobody said (in the History) Romania breached an betrayed a treaty.
The Central Powers started discussions and some preparations for war on Romania since spring of 1916.
|Posted by: Dénes July 12, 2017 08:18 am|
Petre, please don't distort historical facts and and whitewash Rumania's role in WW 1.
The said treaty between the Central Power was very much in effect when Rumania attacked in Aug. 1916. Rumania clearly breached the treaty with its attack against its ally, Austro-Hungary.
"On 30 October 1883 Romania joined the Triple Alliance by means of a defensive agreement with Austria-Hungary. The German Empire joined it on the same day. (...) The alliance was renewed in 1892, 1896, 1902, and, for the last time in 1913, with extended validity until 1920."
|Posted by: Agarici July 12, 2017 07:12 pm|
| I think Denes might be right - strictly formally speaking - although the treaty from its inception was obviously against Romania's best interests - a sort of alliance with Nazi Germany avant la lettre, by choosing the lesser (but evident) evil against a potential bigger one. King Carol (and the government) were clearly (and I think we might say exaggeratedly) marked by Russia's cynicism and hostility tovards Romania after 1877 (1878-1879) to the point of becoming captive to their secret alliance with (the future) Central Powers (see the very expensive - and extensive - fortification system, build to block an aggression from the East). By/in 1913, the hostility of Austria-Hungary towards Romania and its political interests, and it's almost unconditional support for Bulgaria during the First and Second Balkan Wars, completely alienated Romania from it's North-Western neighbor, as concluded by AH diplomatic representative to Bucharest "the string connecting Romania to the Monarchy (AH) is so tense nowadays that it is at the point of breaking".
In my opinion, the death of king Carol made the pact void de facto, and the reality that (by any possible definition) both Austria-Hungary (in the case of Serbia) and Germany (at least in the case of Belgium) were aggressors (according to the existent norms of the International Law - and let's not give way to a new form of historical revisionism by conveniently erasing that fact)) made it void de jure and made any "moral considerations" regarding Romania's declaration of war towards Austria-Hungary irrelevant.