United Kingdom
UnitedKingdom map.jpg
Continent: Europe
Capital: London
National Language: English
Government: Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy
Status in OTL: Active

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK, or Britain) is a constitutional monarchy located off the northwestern coast of continental Europe. It is an island country, spanning an archipelago including Great Britain, the northeastern part of Ireland, and many small islands. The United Kingdom is a unitary state consisting of four countries: England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. It is governed by a parliamentary system with its seat of government in London, the capital, but with three devolved national administrations in Belfast, Edinburgh, and Cardiff.

The three disparate countries were brought together over time, largely through the actions of England. England occupied Wales in the 13th century, and formally incorporated it in the 16th century. Concurrently, England had begun largely successful efforts to occupy and annex Ireland, beginning in the 12th century. Conquest was complete by the 17th century.

England also sought to conquer Scotland for much of the 14th century, but the kingdoms of England and Scotland were de facto unified in the person of James VI of Scotland, who ascended the English throne as James I in 1603. This unification was finally codified in 1707.

The United Kingdom remained more or less intact until after World War I, when Ireland launched a war for independence, which was for the most part successful, although the country was partitioned. An independent Republic of Ireland was created, but the state of Northern Ireland remained part of the UK.

After World War II, independence movements throughout the empire stripped away its colonies throughout the 20th century. At its apex, the UK controlled the largest global empire the world had ever seen.

Today, the UK has the world's sixth largest economy.

Literary Comment[]

Many Harry Turtledove stories feature characters referring to the United Kingdom as "England", which remains a common, if incorrect, colloquialism. Thus, in most stories with a Point of Divergence after 1707, characters who refer to England usually mean the United Kingdom. This probably applies to the Atlantis Series as well. Additionally, many characters in Turtledove works refer to the UK as "Britain", which is another common, and slightly more correct, colloquialism.

United Kingdom in Atlantis[]

See also: England (Atlantis)

After winning the mid-18th century global conflict, the United Kingdom was able to extend its control of Atlantis into former French settlements. The cost of the war and the expansion was substantial. Britain decided to begin more direct oversight of Atlantis, and tax it as well. The Atlanteans rebelled, and began a three-year war that ultimately saw the defeat of British forces and the establishment of the United States of Atlantis.

Relations between the two countries remained icy. During the fighting, Atlantean forces had managed to stir up insurrection in Britain's Terranovan colonies. Although Britain had managed to quell them, by the beginning of the 19th century, Britain was engaged in war with France. Atlantis attempted to support new insurrections, but were discovered by Britain, leading to a second war in 1809. Although Britain had a distinct advantage, the war was ended with the status quo ante bellum restored.

United Kingdom in "The Breaking of Nations"[]

As the United Kingdom implemented Brexit, Scotland left the UK and retained membership in the European Union. Even as late as 2031, the UK was not sure what to do itself.[1]

United Kingdom in The Case of the Toxic Spell Dump[]

England colonized North America in the 16th and 17th centuries. In the 18th century, a union of these colonies broke away and formed the Confederated Provinces of America.[2]

United Kingdom in "Christmas Truce"[]

Soldiers from the United Kingdom participated in the Christmas Day truce in 1914 that brought the Great War to a halt for the day. Unfortunately, an officer named Alec was one of two people killed in violation of the truce. The other was a German soldier named Adolf Hitler, who'd first killed Alec in an attempt to end the truce, and was promptly killed by British lieutenant Bill Meadows. The truce held, despite the tragedy.[3]

United Kingdom in Crosstime Traffic[]

In the home timeline, Scottish nationalists had begun using violence in the United Kingdom, blowing up British postal trucks on multiple occasions.[4]

United Kingdom in Curious Notions[]

In the alternate designated as 3477 by Crosstime Traffic, the United Kingdom and its allies France and Russia were defeated by Germany in the brief war of 1914. Britain and France again went to war with Germany in the late 1930s, but were again defeated, which cleared the way for Germany to assert hegemony over all of Europe. Britain remained nominally independent and still had its own monarchy in the late 21st century, but its government was a puppet of Germany.[5]

United Kingdom in The Disunited States of America[]

The United Kingdom and its empire were among the world's great powers in the late 21st century.

In the early 20th century, the United Kingdom fought the Great War against Prussia. As a large number of Germans had settled in North America, several of the North American nation-states sided with Prussia during the war, leading to bloody conflict on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.

United Kingdom in Days of Infamy[]

The United Kingdom was engaged in a life and death struggle with Nazi Germany when the Japanese entered World War II. Completely unprepared in the Far East, British Empire Forces were soundly defeated on both land and sea, and thrown out of the Pacific, all the way back to India. Due to more pressing concerns back in Europe, the UK wasn’t able to offer anything much than a stiff resistance against the Japanese, as the Royal Air Force battled the Japanese Air Force for control of the skies.

After the victory at El Alamein, the tide of the war in Europe turned in favor of the UK and she was able to retake the initiative in the Pacific in early 1943, bombing Japanese positions and forcing the Japanese to divert limited resources away from Hawaii.

United Kingdom in "La Différence"[]

By the late 21st century, Britain had become a state in United Europe.

United Kingdom in The Guns of the South[]

The United Kingdom had given limited material and diplomatic support to the Confederate States during the Second American Revolution, much to the frustration of the Union. Nevertheless, despite the efforts of envoy James Murray Mason, the British withheld full recognition of the Confederacy until the capture of Washington City. Britain's recognition forced the United States to recognize the Confederacy as well, and USA-UK tensions escalated after the election of President Horatio Seymour in 1864.

When the Union sent troops to the New Mexico and Arizona Territories in order to aid the rebel forces against Mexican Emperor Maximilian, the British Empire was alarmed. In response, England sent more troops to garrison the Canadas prompting protests from President Seymour. Events eventually degenerated into war between England and the Union; for which England was completely unprepared.

Although the Royal Navy was able to blockade the United States' eastern seaboard and bombard the New York and Boston harbors, the British Army was completely routed in the Canadas by the far more numerous and experienced US Army (armed with their own versions of the AK-47), thus losing control of the whole territory to the United States.

United Kingdom in The Hot War[]

Under Prime Minister Clement Attlee, the United Kingdom contributed troops to the UN forces during the Korean War.[6] They also maintained an occupation zone in West Germany.[7] Consequently, when the United States used atomic bombs in Manchuria on 23 January 1951,[8] the UK was the target of a Soviet retaliatory attack on 1 February, which destroyed Norwich and Aberdeen.[9]

While this attack was certainly terrible, Britain proper went largely unmolested for the next few months. British forces met the Soviet invasion of West Germany when the ground war phase of World War III began in earnest later in February.[10] Mid-April saw the Soviets launch a series of bombing raids against British airfields, using conventional explosives. While the attacks were certainly destructive, they were a nuisance compared with the atomic attacks.[11] In fact the British (and allied) war effort was more directly hindered when the Soviets placed an atomic bomb on a freighter and detonated it in the Suez Canal, thoroughly destroying the canal.[12]

The USSR continued to use conventional ordinance until 11 September 1951, when the Soviets finally dropped an atom bomb on Sculthorpe. The explosion there was large enough to level half the buildings in the nearby town of Fakenham.[13] However, these were the last atomic bombs the U.K. were subjected to. For the remainder of the year and into May 1952, Soviet Soviet Beagles dropped conventional ordinance on the U.K.[14]

Britain kept fighting in Western Europe throughout the remainder of the war. In May 1952, the United States was able to locate Joseph Stalin in Omsk, and deployed the new hydrogen bomb against the city. Stalin was among those killed.[15] While Lavrenty Beria succeeded Stalin, his reign lasted a few weeks, and he was ousted by Vyacheslav Molotov, who requested a formal peace with the U.S.[16] The final peace was formalized at Versailles.[17]

United Kingdom in In the Presence of Mine Enemies[]

The United Kingdom was an annexed territory of the Germanic Empire, ruled by the pro-Nazi British Union of Fascists. During the Second World War, Britain and the Soviet Union fought a losing war against Germany, Italy and Japan. Britain was defeated and conquered.

During the war, much of London was destroyed by German dive bombers and Panzers, as Prime Minister Winston Churchill led his country through a doomed last-ditch resistance. Key British buildings including the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben and St. Paul's Cathedral were completely destroyed with photographs and paintings being their only legacy.

As the British were considered Aryan by the Nazis, they escaped persecution. The Nazis installed the collaborationist government of Oswald Mosley, leaving the BUF the only legal political party in Britain. Britain's colonial empire was divided up among the victorious Axis. The British economy also experienced hyper-inflation due to the harsh war reparations and the Reich pegging the Reichsmark artificially high. Partisan uprisings against the occupation authorities were harshly put down with captured partisans and their families and friends being executed in retaliation. The last partisan uprisings came in the mid-1970s, around the time of the Third World War when Germany was fighting a war against the United States, a neutral in the Second World War. Though most of Britain was rebuilt, it never recovered to prewar levels and some areas in London remained in ruins seventy years after the end of the Second World War.

In 2010, upon the death of the third German Führer Kurt Haldweim, calls for reform in the Reich and the Germanic Empire began in Britain. The BUF, under the influence of the newly-elected British Prime Minister Charlie Lynton, started cautious moves towards independence. The revival of democratic ideas was at first cloaked as adherence to Nazi ideals in their purity, specifically Adolf Hitler's support for democracy in the First Edition of Mein Kampf.

United Kingdom in Joe Steele[]

The government and people of the United Kingdom were initially hesitant to face the threat posed by Adolf Hitler's Germany. In September 1938, despite pledges of support from U.S. President Joe Steele and Soviet leader Leon Trotsky, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, and French Premier Edouard Daladier agreed to transfer the Sudetenland to Germany after repeated demands by Hitler.[18]

Almost a year later, Hitler was making territorial demands on Poland. Britain and France attempted to cement an alliance with Trotsky in August, 1939, who instead entered into a non-aggression pact with Hitler. Germany declared war on Poland on September 1, 1939, and Britain and France declared war on Germany. The Soviet Union attacked Poland two weeks later. [19] The Allied war effort was tentative at best, and by May 1940, Germany had occupied Norway and Denmark, and had begun the invasion of the Low Countries. In the face of these losses, PM Chamberlain had lost confidence in the House of Commons, and resigned. He was succeeded by Winston Churchill.[20]

When France fell to Germany, and British forces were driven from the Continent, U.S. President Steele, frightened by the possibility of Hitler completely controlling Europe with only the Atlantic Ocean between him and the U.S., began supplying Britain with weapons and money, but kept the U.S. neutral in the conflict.[21]

While Churchill was grateful for the help, he could not hide his disdain for the source of that help. He publicly accepted the help in a speech that concluded that if the U.S. was "too proud" to fight, the U.K. would still take the tools and win the war. He concluded: "If the Devil opposed Adolf Hitler, I should endeavor to give him a good notice in the House of Commons. Thus I thank Joe Steele." Steele remembered the back-handed compliment.[22]

In 1941, the war in Europe seemed to stabilize, with Germany invading North Africa, Yugoslavia and Greece in order to save Italy's floundering efforts. Japan continued to advance in China, and were making advances into Indochina with Vichy France's tacit approval.[23]

This move concerned both Churchill and Steele, as both the UK and US had interests in the region, and Indochina would make a viable launching pad for Japan to attack those interests.[24] In response, Steele decided to stop selling Japan scrap and oil, and to freeze Japanese assets in the U.S., a course of action that increased the tension between the two countries.[25] Five days after Steele made this decision, Germany attacked the Soviet Union.[26] However, the Soviets were still in the war six weeks later, confounding expectations.[27]

As Russia was fighting for its life, Steele met with Winston Churchill for the first time in Portland, Maine. Churchill had wanted to meet in Canada or Newfoundland, but as Churchill was the one with hat in hand, Steele demanded the Portland meeting. The two actually met aboard a Royal Navy destroyer off the coast.[28] Churchill's first request was that the U.S. extend aid to Trotsky as it had with the U.K. Steele initially refused Churchill's request, but as Churchill grew bolder, reminding Steele that the U.S. was as much a prison state as Trotsky's Soviet Union. He also argued that compared with Hitler, Trotsky was reasonable. Without committing (the U.S. still hadn't recognized the Soviet Union), Steele and his aides returned to their ship after extending a dinner invitation to Churchill.[29] That evening, after some cagey behavior, Steele acknowledged that he'd start sending aid to Trotsky, based on the advice of his speechwriter, Charlie Sullivan. Churchill was delighted.[30]

While Steele tried to keep the aid quiet, dealing through the Soviet embassy in Ottawa, Churchill announced the deal to the world. While Hitler decried the deal, he did not launch a war with the U.S.[31]

In December 1941, Japan attacked several British possessions in the Pacific, including British Malaya and Singapore. While this was devastating to the U.K., the attacks on the American holdings in the Philippines and Pearl Harbor brought the U.S. into the war.[32]

While things looked bleak at the beginning of 1942, as the year continued, things started to go the Allies' way. By 1943, Allied victory seemed almost inevitable. In October, Churchill met with Steele and Trotsky in Basra, Iraq, a British protectorate. This marked the first in person meeting of Steele and Trotsky (Churchill had met Trotsky prior). As part of the conference, Churchill, on behalf of King George VI, presented Trotsky with the Sword of Valor in the name of the Russian people.[33]

The public statement coming out of the conference declared independence for the captured countries of Europe and the Far East and punishment for the German and Japanese leaders causing the war. It also promised the creation of an international organization strong enough to make a lasting peace. Private agreements were also reached where the Soviet Army would help the U.S. invade Japan when it became feasible. Trotsky also had wanted hegemony over all of Eastern Europe and the Balkans but Churchill convinced him to yield influence over Greece to Britain, threatening a naval bombardment of Red Army positions in Greece if it came to that.[34]

Churchill remained in office until after the war in Europe ended in 1945. He was succeeded by Clement Attlee. However, Attlee was not invited to participate in the Wakamatsu Conference by Joe Steele or Leon Trotsky, as the United Kingdom had no role in the invasion of Japan. This snub also symbolized how much the postwar world would be dominated by the U.S. and the U.S.S.R, and that Britain would be secondary going forward.[35]

United Kingdom in "The Last Article"[]

In 1941, Germany invaded and subdued the United Kingdom. After the surrender, all Imperial forces around the world were also ordered to lay down arms, but the Army of India refused. Although conquered, resistance in the UK continued until 1947, when the last of the rebels were hunted down and hanged in Scotland.

United Kingdom in "Last Flight of the Swan of the East"[]

Like many of the other "great powers" of the world, the United Kingdom participated in the race to build leviathans while pursuing its own aims for territorial expansion. By 1914, the Royal Sky Fleet was arguably the best armed and best armored fleet in the skies. It was not invulnerable: the French were able to score a victory during a skirmish with the British in May 1914, though war did not follow.[36]

While Britain's relations with France were frosty indeed in July 1914, her relations with the German Empire were moderately better, primarily because Britain and Germany had historically shared good relations. Britain's king, George V was of the German House of Sachsen-Coburg-Gotha. However, Germany's own aggressive empire-building and sizeable fleet of leviathans presented the U.K. with a potential rival.[37]

Thus, when the assassinations of the Austro-Hungarian Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie plunged the world into war in August 1914, the United Kingdom remained neutral.[38]

United Kingdom in The Man With the Iron Heart[]

The United Kingdom occupied a zone of western Germany after World War II, and found themselves dealing with the German Freedom Front. Like the United States, Britain fought the GFF but not with the level of brutality that the Soviet Union and France did.

Although Prime Minister Winston Churchill had guided the country through the War, he was voted out of office in 1945, and replaced by Clement Attlee. Attlee's government was naturally troubled from the beginning, as the GFF destroyed the Palace of Justice in Nuremberg in December, 1945, killing or injuring the judges set to preside over the trials of German war criminals. British Judges Birkett and Oaksey were among those injured and killed, although it was not clear from initial reports which Judge fell into which category.

The following year, Britain received a substantial black eye when the GFF kidnapped several German physicists from their custody. In December 1946, St. Paul's Cathedral and Westminster Abbey were both destroyed by GFF truck bombers who had infiltrated London.

When the Americans pulled out of Germany in 1948, it was presumed that the British would follow shortly.

United Kingdom in "News From the Front"[]

Although the United Kingdom had been at war longer than the United States, newspapers reported that many British citizens were fed up with the constant bombing they were suffering at the hands of the Germans. A British cab driver who didn't want to be named said that England should've done what France did and pull out of the war. Many criticised Winston Churchill's method of running the war, blaming him for the hardships England now faced.

England’s own war effort against the Germans was further hampered when the New York Times revealed on April 25, 1942 that the British had broken the Germans' top secret Enigma code, listing code-breaking efforts in Bletchley Park, Ceylon and Australia.

United Kingdom in "Ready for the Fatherland"[]

When Germany signed an armistice with the Soviet Union in 1943, its troops were recalled to the West to fight off the British and American invasions. The Axis successfully repelled all Anglo-American attacks except in Sicily, which was added to the Empire, and World War II in Europe ended with that arrangement. In July 1979, Britain was allowed access to German oil wells in North Sea on the condition that they help Germany's client state Croatia suppress a Serb resistance movement.

United Kingdom in Southern Victory[]

Following its defeat in the Great War, Great Britain was forced to grant Ireland independence. The Union Jack would have probably reverted back to its 1707 pattern, lacking the St. Patrick's cross representing Ireland. This flag would have also been used at the POD of The Two Georges and the Atlantis Series.

The United Kingdom, along with France, was a primary ally of the Confederate States. The three nations defeated the United States in the War of Secession and the Second Mexican War. After the latter war, Britain claimed half of the state of Maine as a territorial concession. The three joined with Russia to form the Entente at the beginning of the 20th century, a direct response to the US's alliance with Germany.

During the Great War, Britain was forced to divide its army between Canada and northwestern Europe. The Royal Navy battled its American and German foes from the northern Atlantic through South America to the Pacific. Britain was the last of the Entente powers to sue for peace in 1917 (barring an untouched Japan) after her food supplies from Argentina and Australia were cut off.

The peace terms imposed upon Britain were harsh: London was forced to give independence to Ireland and Quebec, and to cede to the US anglophone Canada, Newfoundland, Bermuda, the Bahamas and the Sandwich Islands. However, Britain was only defeated, not crushed like France and the Confederacy, and remained the dominant power from Africa through India to Australia.

In the interwar years it suffered a defeat at the hands of Central Powers forces at Belfast, and in response to this defeat a right-wing coalition of Winston Churchill's Conservative Party and Oswald Mosley's Silver Shirts was elected as the Government. The British along with the French supported the winning Nationalist faction during the Spanish Civil War. Upon the death of Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany in the summer of 1941, France began demanding territory it had lost in the Great War. Britain backed France's play, believing that the ascendant Friedrich Wilhelm V give in. He refused, and the Second Great War began. Britain maintained its alliance with Jake Featherston's CSA, participating in joint attacks in the Caribbean with the CS. Franco-British forces achieved substantial gains early in the war, but their offensive successes stalled outside of Hamburg in 1942. They launched a disastrous attempt to outflank the German defenses by violating Norwegian neutrality in 1941 and as a result Norway declared for the Central Powers.

Against the United States, Britain scored an early victory in a daring raid to capture its former colonies, Bermuda and the Bahamas, done in conjunction with the CSA. The British (somewhat reluctantly) supported rebellion in Canada but had no realistic chance of returning to the North American mainland. They remained active in the Northern Atlantic, achieving a decisive victory over the German fleet early in 1943. However, unlike the in Great War, they did not participate in the Pacific theater, leaving Entente interests there to their co-belligerent, Japan, which proved to be a mistake; early in 1943, the Japanese abandoned the stalemated war with the U.S. around the Sandwich Islands and launched an offensive against British colonies in Asia.

Britain was one of the belligerent powers that successfully built a superbomb, along with the CS, Germany and the US. In 1944, Britain shared its information with the CS, which allowed the CS to become the first country in North America to detonate a superbomb. However, the US was able to retaliate with two bombs immediately, and the CS could not answer. Britain had to watch in horror as first Petrograd, then Paris were destroyed by German superbomb. While Britain was able to destroy Hamburg, they ultimately were forced to sue for peace when three of its cities, London, Norwich and Brighton were destroyed on the same day by Germany. Britain's response was foiled when a bomber destined for German territory was shot down over Belgium. The Churchill government collapsed, and its successor, led by Sir Horace Wilson, sued for peace.

Britain did not surrender at the end of the war and faced a peace similar to the one imposed in 1917. However both Germany and the USA looked with worry on Japan's new power, and some in both countries began to look at Britain (who lost certain of her Asian possessions to Japan in 1943) as a potential ally against Japan.

United Kingdom in Supervolcano[]

As a result of the eruption of the Yellowstone Supervolcano, the Gulf Stream cooled down and, in turn caused the waters of the Caribbean to be much cooler and, which in turn, led to less warm water going out into the Atlantic, and in turn led to a much colder Europe.[39]

Over the next few years, this seemed to come to pass as the winters in the United Kingdom became harsher and harsher. It was often remarked that the U.K. was on the same latitude as Labrador and the weather began to match.[40]

United Kingdom in The Two Georges[]

By the late 20th century, the United Kingdom maintained perhaps the largest empire the world had ever seen, with kingdoms, empires and/or protectorates in North America, Asia, and Africa.[41]

United Kingdom in "Uncle Alf"[]

The United Kingdom came to the aid of France in 1914 during the Great War. Their combined might proved no match for the German Schlieffen Plan, and the Entente was defeated. Feldgendarmerie Sergeant Adolf Hitler respected the ferocity of the resistance by the English at Lille but was not surprised by the victory of the superior Germans.[42]

United Kingdom in The War That Came Early[]

Although the United Kingdom was a formal ally of Czechoslovakia in 1938, Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain was ready to accept Germany's demands on the Sudetenland in the Munich Conference on the grounds that his country was not ready for a war in that moment. However, when Adolf Hitler used the assassination of the leader of the Sudeten German Party Konrad Henlein to invade Czechoslovakia anyway the United Kingdom had no choice but to join with France and declare war on Germany. Britain and France were joined in their declaration by the Soviet Union.

October 1938 to Summer 1940[]

The first few months of the war were not terribly successful for the Allies. While French troops did invade Germany while Germany was busy invading Czechoslovakia, they did not press their offensive. The BEF in turn didn't leave the borders of France. The Soviet Union did not share a land border with Czechoslovakia, and while some Soviet troops made their way inside the country, the USSR and Germany met in an aerial war over Czechoslovakia. When Czechoslovakia fell in November, 1938, both of the Western Allies suddenly found themselves at a disadvantage as they faced Germany. Soon, Germany had occupied the Netherlands, Luxembourg and Belgium, and British troops were fighting Germany on French soil. In addition, British cities along the English Channel were subject to aerial bombardment from German planes based out of the Low Countries.

The British public was dissatisfied by the conduct of the war, and Parliament responded, subjecting Prime Minister Chamberlain to two confidence votes by the beginning of 1939. Chamberlain narrowly survived both.[43] He was spared a third one when a joint Anglo-French offensive halted the German drive on Paris in April of that year. The Germans began a gradual retreat, although they still remained on French soil into the Summer of 1939.[44]

Despite this, Chamberlain still faced opposition in Parliament. Even fellow Conservative Winston Churchill remained critical of Chamberlain's handling of the war.[45] This criticism did not prevent Chamberlain from appointing Churchill to the new office of Minister of War in the Winter of 1939.[46]

When Germany launched an attack on Denmark in late 1939, Anglo-French troops made their way to Norway in the hopes of stopping the German drive. Fighting there continued into early 1940, before the governments of Britain and France realized it was a losing battle and withdrew troops, concentrating instead on the French front.

1940-1941: Flirtation with Tyranny[]

In the Spring of 1940, Germany's Deputy Führer, Rudolf Hess, parachuted into Scotland, where he was found by Sgt. Alistair Walsh. Walsh took Hess to the appropriate authorities. Hess brought a proposal to the Western Allies: Germany would cease its war with Britain and France, so long as Germany could keep its conquests, and so long as Britain and France joined Germany in its war against the USSR. Negotiations began almost immediately, much to the disgust of several in Parliament and the military.[47] The strongest critic was Winston Churchill, who publically opposed Hess's proposal[48] until he was hit and killed by a drunk driver while crossing the street in London.[49] Chamberlain saw to it that Churchill received a hero's funeral, which simply confirmed for many that he'd been murdered.[50] At the funeral, Chamberlain took the opportunity to bolster the "big switch" by reminding the British people that Churchill had opposed Bolshevism.[51]

There was a price for the switch at the diplomatic level, as the government of the United States, which had been providing armaments to Britain and France, cut off all supplies in October 1940. President Franklin D. Roosevelt gave an angry speech denouncing the "big swtich".[52]

Not long after, Chamberlain, suffering from ill health, resigned as PM, and hand-picked his successor, Sir Horace Wilson, who'd been one of Chamberlain's closest advisors.[53] Chamberlain subsequently died of bowel cancer.[54] Wilson followed Chamberlain's tactic of keeping an eye on his opponents, using Scotland Yard officers to follow people.[55] Nonetheless, a group of politicians, led by Ronald Cartland were able to meet and discuss the less-than-democratic turn the country was taking.[56] Even so, Wilson survived a non-confidence vote in the closing weeks of 1940.[57]

However, as 1940 passed into 1941, Wilson's actions grew noticeably more ruthless. He was also more obsequious to the Nazis than Chamberlain had been.[58] As the year went on, Wilson showed less tolerance of public protests.[59] More government (including King George VI himself) and military officials grew alarmed, but respect for constitutional principals held them all back from direct action.[60]

In January 1941, the Empire of Japan launched an ambitious war on various European and American possessions in the Pacific, including British Malaya.[61]

1941 British Military Coup[]

Finally, in the Spring of 1941, after a few Wilson opponents (including Alistair Walsh) were arrested and detained without charges,[62] the Military acted, with General Archibald Wavell as a crucial pointman. Wilson and his Cabinet were arrested, and political prisoners were released.[63] The coup was largely bloodless, and received public support from the King and the Queen.

The new interim government did not execute Wilson or his Cabinet, but instead held them in preventive detention.[64] Despite support from the King and Queen, many Britons were alarmed by this coup, the first in British history since 1688. The military government further realized that while the Wilson Government had been authoritarian, it had also been legal, while the military government was not, and so could easily be toppled in much the same way it had toppled Wilson. Thus, the military was very careful to observe civil liberties and allow voices of dissent and criticism. It also promised elections throughout the remainder of 1941. But as the UK had gone back to war with Germany, the date of the elections was repeatedly pushed back.[65]

War on Multiple Fronts: 1941-1944[]

France did not withdraw from the Hess Agreement. Thus, when Britain returned to fighting Germany, it was limited to aerial bombardment of German positions, such as Münster.[66] In late summer, 1941, Hitler's ally, Benito Mussolini of Italy announced that he would reopen the North African front.[67] The British military responded by sending more troops to Egypt.[68]

When the attack finally came, the Italian drive into Egypt was quickly halted, and driven back into Libya.[69] However, a more decisive British victory was thwarted by the sudden intervention of the German Luftwaffe, announcing Germany's arrival into the North African war.[70]

Concurrently, in the Pacific, Singapore was besieged by the Japanese, and soon on the verge of falling.[71] This left the United States to carry much of the war in that region, although Britain was able to continue to nettle Japan by sending supplies to China from India.[72] The United States also renewed their shipments to Britain, despite Hitler's threats of unlimited submarine warfare in the Atlantic.[73]

Some hope came when French Premier Daladier opened negotiations with the British[74] and the Soviet Union.[75] By the end of 1941, negotiations had been completed, and France withdrew from its war with the USSR.[76] British troops returned to France in short order.

With the return of a two-front war, Hitler's popularity at home waned throughout in 1942 and 1943. In the West, the Allies made substantial gains in the Low Countries. In the East, Soviet troops pushed through Ukraine towards Poland. The approaching Allied pincers continued to gradually but steadily throughout the next year and a half.

The War in Europe Ends[]

Hitler's downfall came after a series of blunders. In the Winter of 1943, Münster, which had been restive for year, began an open revolt, prompting marshal law.[77] Further, after months of tension, Hitler decided to initiate war with the United States when U-boats attacked several American merchant ships in March, 1944.[78] This prompted several military leaders to form the Committee for the Salvation of the German Nation, with General Heinz Guderian as their leader. When Hitler decided to broadcast a speech from Münster in an attempt to regain the country's trust, the group successfully assassinated him with a bomb, despite the heavy security measures the SS put into place.[79]

A civil war broke out almost immediately. Several of Hitler's would-be successors were arrested or killed. Ultimately, Guderian and the Committee triumphed, and fighting ceased on all fronts in Europe.[80] The war in Europe officially ended in the summer of 1944.

Germany negotiated a peace treaty with Britain, France and the Soviet Union. (The U.S. also participated in the negotiations, but in a very junior capacity in light of the lack of U.S. troops in Europe.) Germany agreed to withdraw from the Low Countries, Denmark and Norway along with the areas of the USSR it still occupied (mostly Byelorussia and Ukraine).[81] In return, the pre-war annexation of Austria was confirmed and the Sudetenland annexation which was the casus belli was allowed. Czechoslovakia was broken up into the puppet state of Slovakia and the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia.[82]

Despite frequent promises of elections, the British military held on to the reins of government even after Germany's capitulation. While Britain still nominally participated in the war against Japan, members of the government privately conceded that the UK was a junior partner to the U.S. in that conflict.[83] Moreover, given spread of nationalism throughout Britain's Asian colonies, it seemed very likely that the British Empire would not survive the war intact.

United Kingdom in Worldwar[]

The United Kingdom had been fighting World War II all across the globe in 1942, with her armies clashing in North Africa and India, while the Royal Navy fought for control of the seas from the Atlantic, to the Mediterranean, and the Indian Ocean.

When the Race landed at the start of June 1942, the United Kingdom was left isolated from the full military might of the Race, however, their island was subjected to numerous bombing attacks by Race Killercraft. For most of the war, while the armies of the UK were engaged in holding off the Race in the Middle East and Western India, the Royal Air Force led the country's true fight against the invaders. Recognizing this threat, the British Isles were invaded in the late summer and autumn of 1943 but repelled the invasion, becoming the first nation to utilize poison gas in the war against the Conquest Fleet in the process. By destroying the Race's scarce transport crafts, they even more severely hampered its efforts in Europe.

By 1944, the war had turned against the United Kingdom with both major theaters outside of the home islands ending in defeat, losing both the Middle East and India. When peace was declared later that year, the UK was originally not invited to the proceedings, but was eventually granted a seat at the table alongside Japan. The United Kingdom remained the only member of the "Big Five" to have not been atom-bombed once during the war, though it lacked the resources to build the bomb itself, and was consequentially stripped of its whole empire and not given full diplomatic relations with the Race.

In the years immediately following the peace, the economy of the UK nosedived due to the loss of their empire. Many manufacturing companies, like cigarettes, failed due to the loss of imports from their various colonies. This resulted in the government being forced to rely heavily on help from both the US and the Germans. Although they acquire atomic weapons, and were granted full diplomatic relations with the Race, the UK was unable to reclaim its empire, while Canada, also free, fell into the orbit of the United States. The UK needed a more powerful ally to remain relevant in the postwar world and found this ally in Germany, with which they developed closer diplomatic and economic ties. Because of this, politics within the British Isles became increasingly fascistic, and life became very hard for the country's minorities; primarily Jews. People such as RAF man and Lizard war veteran David Goldfarb, defected to Canada. Many Jews living in the UK moved either to Northern Ireland (where the Protestants and Catholics were too busy fighting each other to care about Jews), Race-controlled Palestine, the US and Canada.

Despite their close ties, the UK did not join Germany in the Race-German War of 1965, though it did provide some public support. After the war, when Germany's power was greatly reduced due to the peace imposed on it by the Race, the United Kingdom lost its relevance in world and interworld affairs.

As of 2031, Britain did not have the technology to build its own starship capable of journeying to Home in the foreseeable future, making it unique among the former Big Five members.

See also[]


  1. And the Last Trump Shall Sound, pg. 19, loc. 237, ebook.
  2. The Case of the Toxic Spell Dump, p. 209.
  3. Asimov's Science Fiction, November/December, 2019, Vol. 43 Nos. 11 & 12, pgs. 50-51.
  4. The Disunited States of America, pg. 268, pb.
  5. Curious Notions, pg. 43, MMP.
  6. See, e.g., Bombs Away, pg. 88, ebook.
  7. Ibid. pg. 15.
  8. Ibid., pgs. 53-55.
  9. Ibid., pg. 65-70.
  10. Ibid., pg. 111.
  11. Ibid., pgs. 278-280.
  12. Ibid., pg. 295.
  13. Fallout, loc. 2428-2487, ebook.
  14. Ibid., loc. 7041-7104
  15. Armistice, pgs. 69-78, ebook.
  16. Ibid., loc. 2037.
  17. Ibid., pgs. 155-157.
  18. Joe Steele, pgs. 202-203.
  19. Ibid., pgs. 214-215.
  20. Ibid., pgs. 222-223.
  21. Ibid., pgs. 223-224.
  22. Ibid., pgs. 223-224.
  23. Ibid., pg. 234.
  24. Ibid.
  25. Ibid., pgs. 234-235.
  26. Ibid., pg. 235.
  27. Ibid. pg., 236.
  28. Ibid., pgs. 237-239.
  29. Ibid., pgs. 239-240.
  30. Ibid., pgs. 241-242.
  31. Ibid., pg. 242.
  32. Ibid., pgs. 244-247.
  33. Ibid., pg. 279.
  34. Ibid., pgs. 282-283, HC.
  35. Ibid, pg. 326.
  36. "Audacieux", Blaine Lee Pardoe, Leviathans: Armored Skies, pgs. 227-288, loc. 3251-4139, ebook.
  37. Ibid., pg. 293-294, loc. 4195-4210.
  38. Ibid., pg. 300-376, loc. 4300-5461.
  39. All Fall Down, pgs. 189-190, HC.
  40. Things Fall Apart, pg. 343, HC.
  41. Map The Two Georges, frontispiece.
  42. Alternate Generals, pg. 77, HC; Atlantis and Other Places, pg. 337, HC.
  43. Hitler's War, pg. 213, HC.
  44. Ibid., Chapter 26, generally.
  45. West and East, pg. 223.
  46. Ibid., pg. 378.
  47. The Big Switch, pg. 150-51.
  48. Ibid., pg. 197.
  49. Ibid., pg. 214.
  50. Ibid., pg. 234.
  51. Ibid., at pg. 238.
  52. Ibid., pgs. 335-338.
  53. Ibid., pg. 339
  54. Coup d'Etat, pg. 22, HC.
  55. The Big Switch, pg. 342.
  56. Id., pg. 342-344.
  57. Id., pg. 408.
  58. Coup d'Etat, pg. 22, HC.
  59. Ibid., pg. 104.
  60. Ibid., pgs. 91-94.
  61. Ibid., pgs. 398.
  62. See, e.g., pg 134.
  63. Ibid., pgs. 151-152.
  64. Ibid., pgs. 187-188.
  65. Ibid., pg. 187.
  66. ibid., pgs. 182-183.
  67. Ibid, pgs, 262-264.
  68. Ibid.
  69. Ibid., pgs. 309-311.
  70. Ibid., pgs. 337-340.
  71. Ibid. pg. 345.
  72. Ibid., pgs. 334-335.
  73. Ibid., pg. 207.
  74. Ibid., pg. 386.
  75. Ibid.
  76. Ibid. pgs. 389-395
  77. Last Orders, pgs. 116-119.
  78. Ibid., pgs. 269-70.
  79. Ibid., pg. 300.
  80. Ibid., pg. 382.
  81. Ibid, pg. 318.
  82. Ibid, pgs. 341-343.
  83. Ibid., pgs. 371-382.