"This is a war to end all wars and to make the world safe for democracy." - Woodrow Wilson
"Only the dead have seen the end of war" - George Santayana _________________________________________________
Hello, gentlemen. Welcome to "Against the Dying of the Light", a timeline about an earlier WWI and the implications it has for the present-day. This timeline has multiple points of divergence, the earliest being Venezuela, before following with the Fashoda Incident and a fictional naval incident just off the coast of Sudan. For the uninitiated, the title is derived from line in Dylan Thomas' poem "Do not go gentle into that good night", and it reflects all the troubles the world will now endure and how we will rage against the dying of the light. Welcome to war...
War of 1895
Modern historians have no doubt that the Venezuelan Crisis of 1895 served as the trigger for the War of 1895 between the States, its Venezuelan ally and Britain, especially after the HMS Calypso, the HMS Sparta, the HMS Rocket, the HMS Surly, the HMS Magnificent and the HMS Repulse began to engage the USS Maine, the USS Texas, the USS New York, the USS Charleston and the USS Vesuvius, began a skirmish just a kilometer northwest of Georgetown at around 13:43 local time on the 24th of December of 1895. The battle lasted until 15:27 local time, with the HMS Calypso, the HMS Rocket, the HMS Surly, the USS New York and the USS Charleston sunk, the HMS Magnificent, USS Texas and USS Vesuvius taking heavy damage and the Royal Navy being forced to leave the area. After the skirmish, Venezula followed by an invasion of British Guiana via a notification by President Cleveland, while the Americans (with reinforcements) blockaded British Guiana. Of course, the Americans were not done there. Americans crossed the border into Canada, and heavy fighting began between the Royal Army and the US Army. By mid-1896, most of Canada fell to the Americans, while the Royal Army and Navy made a final stand in Newfoundland. Eventually, on the 3rd of August of 1896, the Treaty of Caracas was signed by the Venezuelan government, the States and Britain, which made Britain concede Canada to the States and British Guiana to be conceded to Venezuela. With this in consideration, it gave rise to not only a world power, but one that could challenge the British Empire.
The Outbreak of War
While Britain lost Canada and British Guiana, it had other problems, one of them being France. Though the two nations have sought to better diplomatic relations for decades, the Fashoda and Suez Incidents destroyed any hopes of an alliance between France and Britain, and eventually triggered the First Great War, back then called simply as the Great War. The Fashoda Incident was the incident that brought them both to the brink, but it was the Suez Incident that pushed them over. The French battleship Gaulois and the HMS Royal Sovereign exchanged shots, and the Iéna sunk to the bottom of the Red Sea, with no survivors. When news reached the two sides, the peace died and war began. It did not take long for the war to spread out of control and soon, the world unraveled. The Royal Navy won that skirmish, but the First Great War had begun....