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February 20, 2012
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Gomberg's New World Order by QuantumBranching Gomberg's New World Order by QuantumBranching
This one is based on this map [link] , which has made the rounds of the internet, supposedly as some bizzare scheme of the New Deal gang.

According to online sources, it seems to have been rather the product of a patriotic if leftist (and somewhat wacky) individual by the name of Maurice Gomberg.

Soo...what if this had actually been a plan with the full authority of the President of the United States behind it...?

“Maurice Gomberg barely made it as a US citizen, being born only two weeks after his mother’s arrival in the US – Roosevelt’s successor often stated himself that he had been “phenomenally lucky to be born as a citizen of the US, the world’s greatest nation”….”

“The death of Roosevelt in 1945 would therefore place the destiny of the USA – and to some extent the world – in the hands of a man who, largely unknown to the American people, represented the most radical tendencies of the New Deal Era…”

“The sheer extent of his ambition won him many admirers. In those years after the atomic bomb, it seemed to many that the US could, indeed, reshape the whole world in its image, make the world anew…”

“In his last three years in office, President Gomberg’s undemocratic tendencies revealed themselves at their worst, as various constitutional dodges – some of them essentially created on the spot – were used to force through legislation unpopular with the majority of Senate and Congress. Many argue that Gomberg’s assassination in 1951 averted not just an impeachment – possibly, a civil war…”

“Stalin’s death allowed the realization of many of Gomberg’s objectives. Although many historians, believers in deep currents in history, find it repulsive to imagine that mere botulism-contaminated caviar could have the profound historical effects they did, it is hard to see Stalin agreeing to the global partnership Beria was willing to at least pay lip service to…many feel that Beria, too, was to some extent carried away by the extent of the President’s vision. Of course, US aid and investment also played their role…”

“Although President Gomberg had initially planned a post-war order in which only Roosevelt’s “four policemen” – China, the US, the USSR and the UK – would be allowed to maintain military forces, political realities forced him to allow France to rearm. While pacifistic India would agree to keep its military forces minimal, only through a combination of bribes and threats would the Latin American nations be persuaded to eliminate their small armies – and this would in turn be compensated for by extensive enlargement of various forms of non-military “special forces” – after all, the major function of Latin American armies had historically been to accomplish – or prevent – coups…and Gomberg’s strongly pro-Israel policy would lead to endless headaches in the Middle East as everyone tried to cheat on military limits… of course, one might well argue, as does Professor Freidman, that arms limitations and the buffer position of Israel have also prevented a horrendous war between Baghdad and Cairo over who gets to unify the Arab world…”

“International control of nuclear weapons never quite got off the ground – President Gomberg’s internationalism did not go so far as to prevent him from feeling the US should get something back in exchange for its military supremacy, and the Soviets stalled and temporized on creating an organized system of global inspection and validation to prevent any secret atomic weapons buildups until 1949, when their secret atomic weapons program bore fruit…”

“The creation of immense new systems of road and rail and new “super-ports” to tie together the new international alliances was in the end more than the US and it’s war-battered allies could afford – indeed, probably more than the US today could afford. At the time of President Gomberg’s death, only a fraction of the new transportation links had been constructed...a few continued as prestige projects, notably the Trans-Siberian superhighway and the Pan-American Highway, completed in 1959 after the atomic leveling of two mountains in the Panamanian portion of the Darien Gap.”

“The ‘Peace and Security’ bases – a global network of fortified bases to deter warmongers – proved a political football from the first…Given Soviet demands for an equal role with the British and the French in establishing bases abroad and the fact that the British and the French could not afford a network of bases on the scale the US and the Soviets could maintain, combined with the hostility of so many towards any Soviet bases in Africa and Asia to begin with, in the end plans for national US, British, etc. Peace and Security bases were heavily scaled back and replaced by a system of multinational bases under World League of Nations administration…during the Nervous Fifties, due to the rapid worsening of US-Soviet relations after President Gomberg’s assassination, the situation on the internationalized bases descended into black farce, with pro-US and pro-Soviet factions occupying different sections of the bases and employing most of their energies either in mutual obstructionism or in spying on eachother… an absurd number of bases were built in Africa, where they could provide little useful purpose for maintaining world peace, but where the locals in the immediate postwar era were in no position to object…”

“In spite of later claims of his “irresponsible naivety” in respect to the Soviet Union, the President privately held some surprisingly hard-headed views, as revealed in private letters: discussing the creation of the Soviet Zone in Eastern Europe, Gomberg wrote ‘Are in de facto possession of Eastern Europe and would require another war to dislodge them. Direct incorporation will force upon the Soviets new Polish, Romanian, etc. Party members rising to the highest levels of power, and therefore far more influential upon Soviet policy than the leaders of any puppet states would be…’”

“One element of the bargain that left Iran within the Soviet sphere of influence if still independent was Beria’s turning of a blind eye on US efforts to crush the Communist rebels in China: indeed, recently declassified Soviet documents indicate Beria considered he had made the better bargain, given that the US was eliminating a possible competitor to his utter dominance of the International Communist Movement and would be kept busy for years chasing around the interior of China (the last US troops would not leave until 1958).”

“One of Gomberg’s most decided views was his detestation of ‘vulgar’ or ‘blood and soil’ nationalism…it appears from his writings that he saw his new system of multi-national federations as merely a pause, a temporary stopping point on the way to the creation of a genuine ‘United States of Mankind’.”

“Perhaps the largest obstacle to President Gomberg’s plans for the Old World was the resistance of the UK and France towards schemes to dismantle their empires. France’s proposed role as the linchpin of a unified “Latin West” did not mollify many French nationalists, especially those from Algeria…while France was in too weak a position post-war to prevent the dismantling of much of their empire, delays and passive resistance on their side combined with a stronger British position scuttled ambitions of a federal free Africa…which given the unhappy histories of states such as the East African Confederation, probably would have been something of a disaster waiting to happen…President Gomberg’s occasionally somewhat dim notions of Asian geography proved troublesome, such as the time he proposed Indonesia as part of the new British Commonwealth, possibly out of some degree of uncertainty as to where else to shoehorn it.”

From "President Gomberg’s New World Order: a Study in Hubris", Professor J Sherman, University of Pennsylvania Press, 1972.

It is 1976, twenty-five years after the death of the 20th century’s most controversial president. After the Nervous Fifties and the downright chaotic sixties, a shaky sort of stability has returned to world relations.

With the Soviets badly shaken by the 60’s internal unrest in what used to be Eastern Europe and the brutal political infighting after Beria’s death in 1971 (massive stroke while having sex with three fourteen-year-olds), the new ruling troika is in no mood for confrontation or adventures abroad. They are still busy purging the system of “unreformed Beriaists” and closing down the last of the Gulags (Beria was conscious of the post-WWII shortage of male Soviets, and tried to keep the terror more sharply focused during his rule, but three million executions is still THREE MILLION despite being little more than 10% his predecessor’s toll).

The US, in the meantime, has undergone some violent political swings since 1950: Vice-President Adlai Stevenson barely avoided impeachment himself, and US-Soviet cooperation almost ceased under President McArthur: the bitter Civil Rights struggle (not helped by bloody US “stabilization campaigns” in Africa), women’s rights, and the battle for the survival of the economic aspects of the New Deal (to some extent tainted by association) have polarized politics and caused a spate of assassinations. Even as both Left and Right have distanced themselves from the man they have maintained or revived some of Gomberg’s more aggressive policies sans attribution: his notion of an “Ever-Expanding Union” has overcome racial prejudice to the extent that the US now has three new Spanish-speaking states.

Détente is the word of the day, and both sides have reigned in the military buildup that began under McArthur, and are trying to avoid confrontation in the Third World, and are struggling to find a solution to the Israel Problem.

China in the last few years has begun the economic boom that will make it a third superpower not too far into the 21st century, but with both sides still considering it a corrupt dictatorship wracked by Left-wing unrest (well, it actually is still corrupt and a dictatorship, but not as corrupt as it used to be), the fact of its very rapid current economic growth has not really penetrated public consciousness. Korea (given over entirely to the US as part of the horse-trading) is today a bit of a Chinese satellite.

Federations and unions have been a major aim of political leaders and shakers since Gomberg: although his more ambitious aims of a unified world are not currently on the agenda of anyone save a few soap-box-preacher types (the internet is not yet available for ranting), the general view is that nations smaller than the US are unlikely to ever play an independent role in world politics, so democratic federalism is the way to go: there have been some successes, and some rather dreadful messes.

Efforts to create a unified Arab nation have been stymied so far by French mulishness over Algeria, Saudi massive disinterest in joining an Arab republic, and Gomberg’s mulishness over the existence of a Jewish state, which has led to perpetual efforts to circumvent World League weapons inspectors, two wars, and the current World League occupation of the borders…

The South American project remains bogged down, and it looks like the Columbian-Venezuelan union may break apart: the likelihood that any closer union will lead to Brazilian hegemony makes it a no-starter. (The suggestion that Brazil should break itself apart into several smaller states has not been received well in Rio).[2] However, the continent remains a unified free market, which has allowed for greater growth and trade then the mostly protectionist individual nations of OTL.

The French-led United States of Western Europe (which despite its name also includes Greece and Albania) is a closer union than OTL’s EC at the time, and very much French-dominated, although rapid Italian growth is beginning to challenge Paris’s dominance. Ties are increasing with Germany, which although permanently disarmed and neutralized, has become part of the greater USWE economic sphere as part of the general move towards détente after ’71: this had greatly benefitted the German economy, which had only sputtered through the 50s and early 60s in an atmosphere of continuing political unrest. [1] There is talk of removing the remaining French forces from the Rhinelands.

The revived World League of Nations is a more powerful organization than OTLs United Nations, in spite of efforts by the post-Gomberg reaction to cripple it, and has a large budget and sizeable military capacities: international forces under its flag guard important straits and canals, keep the peace in civil war-ravaged East Africa, and oversee “for future generations” the international territory of Antarctica. If that Moon base ever gets constructed, it will also be under League administration.

In spite of US pressures for India to remain united, Jinnah and the Muslim League were not easily dissuaded, and currently India has a “two-tier” federal system, with regular provinces and special “autonomous nationalities” only very loosely under the control of Delhi: a careful balancing act has so far avoided collapse.

(Then there’s the whole Rajasthan thing…)

Africa is something of a mess, various half-assed efforts at creating federal unions and colonial free trade zones in the brief interval before independence having left a legacy of dysfunctional states. (US pressures, it came earlier even in British territory, and the Portuguese colonies started on a fast track to independence after the US toppled Portugal’s “Pro-Fascist” government.) The last straw for the already over-complicated Sudanese Federation was probably the addition of Eritrea. Not really trusting the Belgians, the US moved into the Congo as a US-Belgian “co-dominion”: nowadays, the area remains essentially a US protectorate, initial efforts to make the place fully independent having led to a messy outbreak of civil war (and alarmed a number of US corporations which by that time had largely bought out the Belgians). Local politics are fairly hairy, and the autonomous state of Shaba is largely corporate run. Now that Black is loudly claimed to be Beautiful, there has been some wild talk of making the Congo a US state (or states), but people think Filipino statehood, remote as the chance is, to be likelier.

The British Commonwealth still exists as a sort of federal Union with some muscle: this probably due to US support and financing, but the British don’t know about the existence of OTL, and feel that the US robbed them of Canada (never mind that it had been pretty much independent for decades) and are responsible for the loss of India (never mind that India was well on the way out before Roosevelt died). When South Africa goes (likely soon) they probably won’t be able to blame it on the US, though. (White South Africa, alas, is in no more mood than OTL to be reasonable on the whole “black people have rights too” viewpoint).

The Soviet Union under Beria took a more consumer goods oriented, more tolerant of petty capitalism approach than OTL, although economic reforms were to some extent countered by the quite unwanted arms race from ’52 onward (never quite as intense as OTL: it started later and did not have quite the urgency the mess in Korea and the “loss of China” gave it OTL, and never involved such OTL flash points as divided Berlin or armies face to face along the Fulda gap). The current government, at the same time as it is pursuing peace abroad, has ironically heightened government control of the economy, in an effort to reinforce a political structure battered by nationalist unrest.

The US economy has not grown quite as fast as OTL, trade being less with a somewhat poorer Europe and expenditures on maintaining a “global role” and efforts to raise all of North America to a comparable level of productivity having hit the pocketbook hard (the space race was also more expensive, since Beria’s Soviet Union did manage to put some Cosmonauts on the Moon and the US then had to build that huge space station and all…). On the other hand, there hasn’t been an Oil Crisis, and although economic growth has slowed somewhat, the 70s don’t look so bad (the fashions are less offensive than OTL, too). There was no “Liberal Consensus” in this world for the Vietnam/Civil Rights era to smash: while OTL this was the era when the reaction to the 60s was gathering strength, the US in this world was and remains divided not over the era from Kennedy to the Vietnam skedaddle, but over the years from ’45 to ’51, when it briefly seemed an entirely new world was in the making…

[1] Why is Germany not in the Soviet sphere? President Gomberg was rather happy with the idea of turning Germany over to Beria's tender mercies, especially after the scale of the Holocaust and deaths in Soviet and Polish territory got out, but was talked out of it by his advisors, cabinet, congressional leaders, etc. (everyone pretty much thought it was a bad idea) so he grudgingly settled for permanently disarmed, neutralized, and militarily occupied. There was still a sort of modified Morgenthau plan and a far more thorough de-Nazification, leading in part to the economic difficulties and political turmoil of the next two decades, and a great deal of German immigration abroad (the immigrants to South Africa will Not Help At All with the Apartheid problem).

[2] Still the capital in this timeline.
Add a Comment:
bruiser128 Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2014
I'm glad we never had such a naive idiot like that in OTL, but I have to admit I always picture the Latin European nations being united.
Todyo1798 Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
What is your dark red west African state anyway? It ain't in the key.
QuantumBranching Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012
Will you believe I can't remember? :doh:
Todyo1798 Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Yes I will :p

I'm assuming it is, Communistical what with your comments on Algeria being Socialist and having the same colour.
Warsie Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Still, i love how you phrase some of this. seems a little dystopian.
QuantumBranching Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012
Yep, and likely to have further problems: I may come back to it sometime to do a 2012 ('13? :) ) map at some point...
Warsie Featured By Owner Nov 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
it's almost 2013 xD
QuantumBranching Featured By Owner Nov 25, 2012
True, and it will be 2013 for quite a while after that. :)
Warsie Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
>>With the Soviets badly shaken by the 60’s internal unrest in what used to be Eastern Europe and the brutal political infighting after Beria’s death in 1971 (massive stroke while having sex with three fourteen-year-olds


>>(Beria was conscious of the post-WWII shortage of male Soviets, and tried to keep the terror more sharply focused during his rule, but three million executions is still THREE MILLION despite being little more than 10% his predecessor’s toll).

I'm surprised he wouldnt blatantly call for Polygamy to solve the gender imbalance, but in practice that is probably what happened.

>>Why is Germany not in the Soviet sphere?

Also, I'd think Gomberg would allow the Soviets to loot the country etc for a while, THEN withdraw from it - kind've what wouldve happened OTL with Beria, which as I see he did stay in power.
QuantumBranching Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012
Well,I'm sticking with the "neutralized" scenario, but I think the Soviets probably got a larger occupation zone...

State-run fertility clinics for single women? Stocked purely with the sperm of Soviet heroes, no doubt...
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