Search This Blog

Friday, 17 April 2015

An Alternate History Scenario for Every Country (Part 7)

Welcome back to An Alternate History Scenario for Every Country! Here is Part 1: and Part 6: Now without further ado let's see some of this week's alternate history scenarios.

Iran- The Umayyad Dynasty does not discriminate against Iranians
The successors of the Muslim Rashidun called the Umayyad Dynasty conquered the Sassanid Empire (an empire consisting of modern day Iraq and some areas of Mesopotamia and the Arabian Peninsula) in 651. This started a process of converting the conquered peoples to Islam but both Iranian Muslims (mawali) and non-Muslims (Dhimmi) faced discrimination by the Umayyads as they were barred from holding office in the government and the military as well as them having to pay a special tax called the jizya. In this scenario the Umayyads decide to accept the Iranian mawali into the military and government although they still impose the restrictions on Iranian Dhimmi. As a result Arabian culture leaks into Iran as more and more people adopt Islam and Arabian culture in order to gain better roles in the government and military. Thanks to the larger population of Iran they would be able to introduce some of their own systems of government to the Umayyad rule such as introducing viziers (ministers) which had been previously been used by the Sassanids. Although the Umayyads would still put pressure on mawali to adopt Arabic customs and Dhimmi to convert to Islam. This would remain a gradual process and would progress further in urban areas but in rural areas where administration was less efficient the military may be brought in to put down Iranian nationalists. When the Abbasid Revolution takes place the Iranian mawali would stay loyal to the Umayyads because they were accepted into the government so would not support the Abbasids. In our timeline the Abbasids heavily relied on dissatisfied Iranian mawali to fight the Umayyads so the Abbasid Revolution fails instead of succeeding. However under the Abbasid Caliphate there was a resurgence of Persian culture including Persian literature, arts, language and medicine so we would not have this resurgence in this scenario. The famous 1001 Arabian Nights was written as apart of this resurgence and the stories of Sinbad so we would not have these stories thanks to this. Eventually by 900 the Umayyad Dynasty would start to collapse thanks to rifts between the different separatist movements and an Iranian Caliphate would emerge from the crumbling empire. Through here Persian and Persian culture would slowly start to be returned to dominance over Arabic culture; that is until the coming of the Mongol hordes and the sacking and burning that follows...

New Zealand- The Māori succeed in ousting the British
Starting with the Flagstaff War in 1845 Māori angry that their land was being taken from them despite the fact that they had signed the Treaty of Waitangi which protected their lands fought a series of wars against the British. After years of fighting what was known as te riri pakeha (white man's anger) put down the Māori uprisings but they were allowed to keep some land. In this scenario the newly formed Māori King Movement manages to unite the different tribes on both the North and South island quickly allowing them to win more battles against the British. The British expected united Māori resistance, which was limited, but nevertheless the expert guerrilla and formidable tactics allowed a non-united movement to last for twenty years. In this scenario with a united movement they manage to gain a better foothold against the British and they easily overrun the 1300 British soldiers positioned in New Zealand. Raiding trade depots they manage to gain better firepower and catch the British government off guard which allows them to beat back the British reinforcement. The Māori King Movement blocks the ports forcing the British to land in more inhospitable places which the Māori can easily get to and stop them. Bu the 1860s the British give up and leave New Zealand to the Māori. Thanks to the war effort the leader of the Māori King Movement called Matutaera Tāwhiao is made the first king of a united New Zealand. Here they manage to keep their religion, principally Pai Marire although there would still be many Christians, but by using trade depots and items taken from the British during the war they would begin a period urbanization. Most of the economy would be based on farming although trade with the Dutch, French and later British after they had licked their wounds would help increase the newly unified nation. Quickly Māori who had profited through trade and agriculture would send their children to schools abroad during the later half of the 19th Century until New Zealand's infrastructure increased. New Zealand would be heavily decentralized compared to our timeline with each Māori tribe holding great power and self autonomy which would make the elected government have to keep regional needs in mind.

Libya- The Arab Spring fails to spread to Libya
In 2011 a wave of organised protests swept across the Arabic countries to protests against authoritarianism and human rights abuse in their countries with the Arab Spring. In Libya this resulted in a Civil War which devastated the country and four years on still devastates the nation. With this scenario the Libyan regime under Colonel Muammar al-Gaddafi decides to give token concessions to the protesters instead of responding with force and claiming that they were 'drugged' and affiliated with Al-Qaeda. Seeing though how protesters had managed to oust the authoritarian regimes of Tunisia and Egypt by mass demonstrations organised over the internet the Libyan government might briefly order a curfew on the grounds that Al-Qaeda planned a bombing campaign. Without managing to organize a mass demonstration and with token reform the people of Libya fail to overthrow al-Gaddafi's regime. The most instant result from this would that the Libyan Civil War would never happen between al-Gaddafi's supporters and rebels which would soon escalate to war between the disagreeing factions. Libya would be a much more peaceful nation and the scores of refugees fleeing the horrific warfare to Europe would have no reason to leave Libya. Small scale elections would be held as apart of the regime's token reforms to avoid what happened to authoritarian regimes in Egypt and Tunisia which would bring a few people into low level municipal jobs. This would help reduce the claims, (which were very well founded), that al-Gaddafi had a regime ran on nepotism but it also gave him a scapegoat after they fail to reduce the 30% unemployment rate thanks to the regime's rigid structure. Nevertheless al-Gaddafi would face the same problems that Saudi Arabia faces today as he orders press censorship and the arrest of bloggers who criticize his regime on an international level. With Libya's neighbors slowly transitioning to a democracy Libya would become a pariah in Northern Africa although he would support the army overthrowing the Mosi government with the hope it would deter protesters in Libya. Today ISIS has became a major force in Libya thanks to the turmoil in the nation and is expanding into Morocco and Tunisia from there so we can easily imagine that ISIS would not take root in North Africa if this scenario took place.

San Marino- Napoleon invades the city state
During the French Revolutionary War Napoleon Bonaparte was winning battle after battle in the Italian peninsula and the Regents that ran the city state feared that Napoleon would take on San Marino. One of the Regents called Antonio Onofri managed to gain the friendship of Napoleon and he struck such an accord with the general that Napoleon even offered San Marino the chance to expand its borders, (which they ended up refusing). In this scenario the Regents fail to woe Napoleon and as his armies march across Italy he sees the city state as a threat with it offering a possible beacon of Italian nationalism. Inevitably the city state would fall to the general and would remain occupied by France until Napoleon forms the Kingdom of Italy where he makes the former city state apart of the new puppet kingdom. However even after the fall of Napoleon San Marino would be unable to declare its independence and San Marino would still have high levels of nationalism. This would continue after the unification of Italy and the new kingdom would try and Italianize the area. Quite possibly San Marino would continue with its nationalism well into the 20th Century and when Mussolini is being forced back during World War Two the people of San Marino may seize their chance and ally themselves with the Allies to fight against the dictator. Quite possibly following the end of the war San Marino would be given back its independence.

Nepal- Nepal is not unified during the 18th Century
In 1482 Nepal was split into three kingdoms and it took until the 18th Century where through warfare the Gorkha King Prithvi Narayan Shah managed to unify Nepal once more by 1769. In our timeline his first battle ended with defeat at Nuwakot so for this alternate history scenario during the first battle of Nuwakot the King is killed and with a disorganized country following the sudden death of the monarch all attempts for Gorkha to unify Nepal are abandoned. Socially the history of the people would be different as crops would be used to feed the people rather than feed armies hell bent on unifying Nepal so overall the people could have had a better life thanks to this. Politically though Prithvi's family would most likely be overthrown during the disarray following his death. However their lives would be changed forever following the disintegration of the Mughal Empire. That is the British would start influencing the region. When Nepal unified Prithvi Narayan Shah's successors expanded the borders further until the Anglo-Nepali War in 1815 where after multiple humiliating defeats for them the British took Sikkim from Nepal. In this scenario with a factionalized royal family in Gorkha and not too powerful nations like Kathmandu the East Indian Company would take over the regions but with greater ease as they would not be facing a united Nepal, (something they failed to do in our timeline). British rule in Nepal would resemble that in India where they would rule through the former princes who would be taken to Britain to be educated. Some customs would though be changed such as the abolishment of slavery by 1850. Most likely the British would build infrastructure in order to give them a headway across the Himalayas to better secure trade in China through Tibet. British rule would last until 1947 as they left India. However this would end up unifying Nepal as Britain divided their Indian empire through religion, (hence why Muslim Bangladesh became apart of Muslim Pakistan despite having no shared borders), as Nepal was primarily Buddhist. Although Nepal would be made a republic with close ties with India.

Jamaica- Spain continues to rule the island
Judging by how today Jamaica speaks a variation of English it would be easily to assume that Jamaica was always a British colony. It only became an English colony, (Britain had yet to be formed), in 1655 after they had evicted the Spanish. In this scenario Spain manages to keep Jamaica after an intense battle with the English. Immediately they build forts across the coast to fortify the island but like in out timeline Spain would import slaves from West Africa to work on sugar plantations. In our timeline 1,500 people were black to 4,500 white people lived on Jamaica by 1660 but just 10 years later black people became the majority so we can assume this trend continued in the same sense except with the Spanish instead. Instead of a variation of English taking place as the main language we would see a variation of Spanish instead. We can look at colonial Cuba to see what a Spanish ran Jamaica, (called Santiago), would be like. Cuba remained loyal to Spain during the 1820s when the Latin American colonies were declaring their independence so we can assume that Jamaica would with the rich not wanting to sacrifice the lucrative sugar industry during revolution. The heavily fortified island to avoid British or French invasion would allow garrisons to put down any rebellion from slaves who were inspired by the revolutionaries in Haiti. By 1860 39% of Cuba's population of non-white people were free people so we can also assume that this trend would continue in Santiago and as abolitionism became more widely accepted in the colonies this number would undoubtedly grow until the abolishment of slavery in the colonies. Like in Cuba the sugar planters, slaves and discriminated against free men would want independence and the first rebellion would happen in 1870 but duly crushed. Nevertheless it would inspire future rebellions and with Cuba in open violence for independence Santiago would fight for its independence in 1895. With Spanish forces stretched as soon as the US declares war in 1898 the Spanish government gives Santiago independence. Although a new form of imperialism would take place with the US taking a keen interest in the sugar industry like they did in Cuba. Through this we may even get a Jamaican Castro.

Namibia- It is made a British and not a South African mandate
Following the end of World War One the victorious powers decided to go with President Wilson's ideas of self-determination for the former German colonies by making them colonies of the victorious powers, (because nothing says autonomy like renamed imperialism), called mandates instead of colonies. Namibia was given to South Africa as a mandate. In this scenario Namibia is instead made a British mandate. The white minority in Namibia in our timeline were made members of the South African Parliament so in this scenario they are given a few seats in the regional parliament. Like with other colonies Britain would adopt a divide and rule policy in regards to the Bantu tribes in order to keep them in line. That is until the Second World War where volunteers are used to fight against Nazism with the Bantu peoples being worried that if the Nazis win they would regain Namibia and recreate the horrific Herero and Namaqua Genocide which killed half the Namaqua population and 80% of the Herero population! Seeing British imperialism better than Nazi imperialism there would be tonnes of volunteers. This would have a secondary effect of influencing nationalism for Namibians as well as influencing policy makers to grant Namibian independence. After the war Namibians would not suffer through the horrific Apartheid policies put in place in South Africa as in our timeline. By the 1960s the South-West Africa People's Organisation (SWAPO) would be formed to try and get Namibian independence and in 1967 Namibia would be given independence in the same sense as nearby Botswana, where everyone has a vote, no racism etc. as well as being a member of the British commonwealth.

Nigeria- Muhammad Yusuf is not killed in police custody
Muhammad Yusuf was the founder of the organisation Boko Haram in northern Nigeria and was arrested in 2009 during Operation Flush where he died in police custody. He was succeeded by Abubakar Shekau he turned the group into the horrific terrorist group in existence today. In this scenario Yusuf is not killed in custody and he is sent to a prison where he cannot preach his anti-West and anti-government views. This means that he remains in charge of the group but unable to properly lead it which causes Boko Haram to become increasingly less powerful in Nigeria. As a result the former Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan's presidency would largely be met with mute reaction. Boko Haram is one of the world's most horrific terrorist groups and some of their most heinous actions such as the kidnapping of 276 schoolgirls from Chibok, the massacre of 2000 innocent people in Baga and the murders of children as young as ten would not have happened. It is unlikely that the group would have been disbanded during Yusuf's imprisonment, most likely even taking part in low level acts of violence, but with Shekau not in power their most horrific crimes most likely would not have taken place.

Thanks for reading and I'm doing another one next week. If you like it please leave comments and Google+ the page if you liked it.

No comments:

Post a Comment