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The following timeline offers a complete history of events in For Want of an Inch.
Autumn, 1916: Divergence
On the 7th of October, Corporal Adolf Hitler is hit by shrapnel in a British artillery bombardment near the French commune of Bapaume. Unlike in our timeline, where this resulted in a non-fatal wound to his left thigh and Hitler's return to active service in March of the following year, in this timeline he suffers an arterial bleeding and succumbs to blood loss before reaching an aid station. After four and a half months of fighting with negligible territorial changes to show for it, the Battle of the Somme stalemates by the 18th of November. In spite of Hitler's demise, one million soldiers have still died, fallen wounded or gone missing in a World War that will drag on for two more years. It is the death of a lowly dispatch runner, however, that will come to mark 1916 as a turning point in history.
1916 to 1929: Interlude
The remainder of the war and the better half of our Interbellum occur in this timeline largely as in ours.
- 1916—1928 - Following the Revolution of 1911 and the anti-Monarchy War of 1915/16, warlordism takes hold of China. The country is nominally reunified in late 1928 by the National People's Party under Jiang Jieshi, but its authority remains weak outside the central-eastern part of the country. Adding to their worries, a civil war against Mao Zedong's Communist Party is brewing, as an expansionist Japan lurks from the east.
- 1917—1924 - A series of revolutions topple the Austro-Hungarian, German, Ottoman and Russian monarchies, resulting in the separation of Austria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary and Yugoslavia, the founding of the German and Turkish republics, and the emergence of a communist Soviet Union pursuing world revolution.
- 1919 - The victorious Allies deal out harsh punishment to the former Centrals at the Paris Peace Conference. Besides demands for demilitarization and hefty reparations from Germany, national boundaries are arbitrarily redrawn—feeding revanchism and general animosity between countries for years to come.
- 1922 - Benito Mussolini
- 1924 - The founding Premier of the Soviet Union Vladimir Lenin dies.
- 1929 - Onset of the Great Depression.