What if Germany fights it out in 1918?

Yeah the **Chief of Serbian Military Intelligence **.

Dhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Assassination_of_Archduke_Franz_Ferdinand
*In charge of these Serbian military conspirators was Chief of Serbian Military Intelligence Dragutin Dimitrijević, his right-hand man Major Vojislav Tankosić, and the spy Rade Malobabić. Tankosić armed the assassins with bombs and pistols and trained them. The assassins were given access to the same clandestine network of safe-houses and agents that Malobabić used for the infiltration of weapons and operatives into Austria-Hungary.

Like I said,the Germans only got a few miles into France. The damage that was caused was by both sides blowing the shit out of the countryside.

Umm, no. The treaty that ended the Franco-Prussian war was much more lenient than the Versaille treaty.

The nations that started the Great War were ALL “Bad guys”- all lying, war provoking, militaristic, Imperialistic nations that were lusting for more land and a war. ALL bore equal responsibility for the horror that was the War to End All wars.

See post #39. Key lines, in case you’ve forgotten:

*""Constant shelling left the area of the (Western) front so scarred that craters and trench lines can still be seen in the French countryside to this day. Towns that were swept over by the front were obliterated. This was exacerbated by a German scorched-earth policy. When the German army pulled back to the Hindenburg Line after the battle of the Somme, engineer companies systematically pulled down buildings, cut trees, poisoned wells and set booby traps in the areas being evacuated…the German invasion and occupation was needlessly destructive in many ways.

Based on their experience invading France in 1870-71, the German Army was terrified of guerrilla snipers. Officers followed a policy of severe reprisals, putting suspects before firing squads and burning down houses or whole villages in retaliation for alleged shots fired at soldiers. On August 25th, 1914, German soldiers killed 248 residents of the Belgian city of Leuven, expelled the remaining 10,000 citizens, and burned the town, including the university library containing 300,000 irreplaceable medieval manuscripts…

Belgium and northern France were a heavily industrial area, and German occupation forces set about stripping the area of resources, leading to massive food and fuel shortages. Many factories were dismantled and shipped to Germany. Individual towns and cities were assigned indemnities to be collected from civilians’ savings and turned over to the occupation authorities. During July 1915 an indemnity of one million marks was levied on Sedan while the residents of Lille were ordered to pay three million. Basic household goods were extracted from the civilian population—linens, cooking pots, china, and furniture—and civilians were required to quarter soldiers in their homes.

German soldiers killed 248 residents of Leuven, expelled the remaining 10,000 citizens, and burned the town, including the university library containing 300,000 irreplaceable medieval manuscripts.
In addition to requisitions of material goods, German occupation authorities increasingly requisitioned the time and labor of the occupied population. A common punishment for minor infractions was being shipped to Germany to perform forced labor. Young men of military age were drafted into labor battalions and assigned work, including repairing trenches and burying the dead at the front. Sometimes this forced labor was combined with additional humiliations. When 20,000 women and girls were shipped out of Lille in April 1916, they were all forced to undergo the same gynecological examination by German army doctors usually inflicted on registered army prostitutes…

Given all this, the demand for some degree of reparations becomes more understandable. The Allied commitment to help rebuild Germany after World War II wasn’t just the result of less anger towards Germany than in the prior war. It was a realistic response to the fact that German cities and the German economy had been utterly destroyed. In World War I, it was France and Belgium which had suffered that level of destruction, while Germany had benefitted from stripping away their resources during four years of occupation. Reparations were simply a way to try to right the injustices of the occupation and help the more injured party recover from the war."*

This sophisticated view might be shaken if you did some reading on the subject. I suggest starting with Max Hastings “Catastrophe 1914”, which shreds modern historical revisionism on the subject.

And who did that shelling? Both sides.

Yes, the German army pulled back to the Hindenburg Line- a distance of a few miles.

The germans simply didnt get far enough into France. Look at the damn map.

By the way, 3.7% of the area of France is about 9100 square miles. That’s an area slightly greater than the area of New Jersey and slightly less than the area of New Hampshire. Whether by measure in absolute terms or relative terms, this is not a trivial amount of territory.

The Great War bumped their schedule a bit to present the episode covering the armistice actually on armistice day. From the sound of it, even if Germany itself had been invaded, only a tiny portion of the German army would have fought, the remainder fully refusing (as the navy already was) or perhaps even joining the other side – the German socialists.

From S.L.A. Marshall’s “World War I”, describing the German retreat from the Oise salient in France before the Nivelle offensive:

“The staged withdrawal, called Operation Alberich by the Germans, and taking its title from the destructive dwarf in the Nibelung saga, was one of the most fiendish affairs in modern history. Before they got out, the Germans systematically vandalized the landscape, pulling down thousands of homes, felling every orchard tree, burning forests, poisoning wells and reeservoirs, demolishing bridges and rail lines, and wiping out the roadways.”

Being compelled to pay reparations for such massive and unnecessary destruction here and elsewhere in occupied territories does not seem like a harsh penalty for Germany.

Sure, but again, they only got into France a few miles. The reparations paid for that a thousand times over.

Do calculate the cost* of all the property confiscated or destroyed by the German military (in addition to the acts previously explained to you, add in the deliberate burning of the library at Louvain. Then come up with a way to assign a dollar value to the lives of the civilians executed by German forces.

After that you can explain how reparations (much of which were never collected) paid for all that “a thousand times over”.

*non-anal canal-derived cites appreciated.

Which is why that region was quickly returned to its pre-war state with farms, villages and smiling happy people?

Or …

The expense of repairing that area is so enormous that even with modern technology and equipment it is not remotely practical to return it to its original state.

Earlier, you said that it was 50 miles, which is not exactly a few miles I have previously provided a cite that the Germans occupied an area approximately the size of New Jersey (out of a country much smaller than the United States).

One of my favorite WWI factoids - the Imperial Japanese Navy helped patrol the Mediterranean during the war: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2nd_Special_Squadron_(Japanese_Navy)

Maybe they didn’t read the Zimmermann Telegram.

Yes, a few miles. Yes, about 3-4% of France. Tiny %.

For God’s sake, here’s a map of the area Germany occupied. People can decide for themselves what they want to call it.

Yes, but that is only a map of the north east part of france. As has been said, at their greatest exent Germany only occupied a tiny corner of France, unlike that in WWII>

Here is a wiki article on the reparations:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_I_reparations

I don’t want to join this argument. Argue with the map.

I wouldn’t want to mow it.

Especially as many of the most important French villes martyres, such as Reims, Amiens, Soissons and Arras, were by late 1914 back in French hands. Some of the worst damage was done to towns that were only briefly occupied by the Germans.

“64 percent of France’s pig-iron production, 24 percent of its steel manufacturing and 40 percent of the total coal mining capacity was located in the zone, dealing a major setback to French industry. A number of important towns and cities were situated within it too, notably Lille, Douai, Cambrai, Valenciennes, Maubeuge and Avesnes. Partly because of its proximity to the front, occupied north-east France was ruled by the military, rather than by a civilian occupation administration. Economic exploitation of the occupied zone increased throughout the war. Forced labor became increasingly common as the war dragged on.”

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_occupation_of_north-east_France_during_World_War_I

How do we calculate the value of forced French labor during the war, on top of all the other human and material costs previously discussed?

Germany also occupied nearly the entire country of Belgium during WWI, and similarly made itself welcome there:

"The German army was outraged at how Belgium had frustrated the Schlieffen Plan to capture Paris. From top to bottom there was a firm belief that the Belgians had unleashed illegal saboteurs (called “francs-tireurs”) and that civilians had tortured and maltreated German soldiers. The response was a series of multiple large-scale attacks on civilians and the destruction of historic buildings and cultural centers. The German army executed between 5,500 and 6,500[13] French and Belgian civilians between August and November 1914, usually in near-random large-scale shootings of civilians ordered by junior German officers. Individuals suspected of partisan activities were summarily shot. Historians researching German Army records have discovered 101 “major” incidents—where ten or more civilians were killed—with a total of 4,421 executed. Historians have also discovered 383 “minor” incidents that led to the deaths of another 1,100 Belgians. Almost all were claimed by Germany to be responses to guerrilla attacks.[14] In addition some high-profile Belgian figures, including politician Adolphe Max and historian Henri Pirenne, were imprisoned in Germany as hostages. "

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgium_in_World_War_I

Belgium got a share of German reparations after the war, though considerably less then they wanted and needed.