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Re: [alternate-history] Re: Columbus Fails to return?

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  • Victorian Cow
    Contrary to much myth the Spanish conquests in OTL were not slam dunks. In Mexico Moctezuma may have thought Cortez a God. No one else had simnilar delusions.
    Message 1 of 7 , Mar 1, 2001
      Contrary to much myth the Spanish conquests in OTL were not slam dunks.

      In Mexico Moctezuma may have thought Cortez a God. No one else had simnilar
      delusions. Cortez won by assembling and holding togther a vast coalition of
      Aztec enemies, laced lightly with Spaniards. The Spanish lost Mexico City
      once. They came close to failing to retake it. their main weapon was
      plague. Several decades later plague would have made Mexico an easy target.

      Peru is the one exception to the slam dunk rule. Essentially Pizzaro took
      advantage of an Inca Civil War and an idiot Inca to naviagte impossible
      terrain without opposition. An extremely centralized theoicracy then
      essentially surcomed to disease and inertia. A few decades later, with
      plagues ravaging the remains of the former Inca Empire, it would have been a
      much slower slog off the coast (impossible terrain again) but a very
      different war - fighting a hundred petty kingdoms, independent vilklages,
      etc.

      In the main the Spanish ultimately win because of a superior level of
      civilization - admin, logistics, all the boring stuff - for the Incas or
      Aztecs to survive would have taken absorbing modern European civlization.
      The gunpowder states of South Asia and Southeast Asia (much closer in
      civilization) were unable to combine mercs, tech experts, and some imported
      weapons into a longterm winning strategy.

      The thing to look at is that from 1492 to 1900 only Afghnaistan, Ethiopia
      and Siam avoid outright colonization by Europe if you allow that the
      Ottomans as a European great power. Only Japan achieves nonEuro white great
      power status. It is not a long list.

      Scott
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Barry G" <sohard2c@...>
      To: <alternate-history@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Wednesday, February 28, 2001 7:36 PM
      Subject: [alternate-history] Re: Columbus Fails to return?


      > --- In alternate-history@y..., "Barry G" <sohard2c@y...> wrote:
      > > What would be th effect of a failure of C Columbus to return to
      > > Europe?
      >
      > My thoughts were more along the lines of how the locals would
      > finally react once the Europeans final did arrive. Would the sailors
      > stranded in the New World have an effect on how the natives would
      > treat the invading European solders if they knew in advance that they
      > infact were not the Gods of their legends? I can see most of the
      > sailors superior attitude wearing out their welcome fairly quick &
      > thus provide the natives with a truer picture of who the white man
      > is.
      > I tend to agree that the most likely point of "Discovery" of the new
      > world would come in The area of present day Brazil, but there may be
      > a delay of this event for several decades into the 16th cenutry.
      > With extra time and info allowed to the Aztecs would they still have
      > been in awe of the Spanish? What happens to the small amount of
      > troops that show up in Central America and face a huge population
      > that doesn't fear them as gods but hates them as invaders.
      > And the events in the new world will not exist in a vaccum, War and
      > politics in Europe will march on, a resistive native population could
      > find that they often defeat the white man who must ship men over
      > thousands of miles of ocean. When they don't roll over and give up,
      > Spain being a country that has existed unified under one government
      > for only a short time with very limited control over much of it's own
      > lands will be less of a invader and more of a trader.
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
      >
      >
      >
    • lord_of_change2001@yahoo.co.uk
      The Aztecs were essentially defeated because of their own fatalism than because of any Spanish military brilliance . Their whole belief that they had to keep
      Message 2 of 7 , Mar 2, 2001
        The Aztecs were essentially defeated because of their own fatalism
        than because of any Spanish military brilliance . Their whole belief
        that they had to keep sacraficing peole to their gods or the world
        would literally end is the symptom of their supreme fatalism .
        Combined with the fact that they thought of the world as existing
        in terms of cycles , the fact that one of these ages ended just as
        the Spanish arrived , and their myths about the gods arriving from
        the east , made them cave without any real kind of a fight .
        If they had put any kind of military imagination at all into fighting
        the Spanish they could have beaten them quite easily . But they were
        effectively resigned to losing from a very early stage , and once
        news of the first Spanish victory over them spread , the other tribes
        which they had conquored and who detested them , rose up and joined
        the Spanish , providing the vast bulk of the forces which defeated
        the by now dissheartened Aztec cities . The Spanish also killed
        ruthlessly , which the Aztecs couldn't understand , as the whole
        purpose of their wars were to capture live victims to sacrafice in
        their temples . This was also the means of social control by which
        they held all the tribes they had conquered in check !
        Bottom line is that the Aztecs were heading for a fall anyway !
        If the Spanish hadn't have offed them , there would have been a
        rebellion or a power struggle within the Royal clan that would have
        seen the empire dissintegrate somtime within the next few decades
        anyway !
        Ironically if the Aztec empire had already dissintegrated by the time
        the Europeans had arrived in S America , they would have had a much
        tougher time invading it , and would have most likely have interacted
        more as traders (although possibly slave trader ?) , than as
        overlords . Without local allies they would not have had the force to
        take all the territory they did as quickly as they did , and no
        people that had recently broken free of a tyranny would easily be
        cowed into the fold of another .
        Perhapse a new empire would have emerged based on one of the formerly
        subjegated tribes ? After all there was a whole sucession of
        Messoamerican cultures leading up to the Aztecs !

        Lord of Change




        --- In alternate-history@y..., "Barry G" <sohard2c@y...> wrote:
        > --- In alternate-history@y..., "Barry G" <sohard2c@y...> wrote:
        > > What would be th effect of a failure of C Columbus to return to
        > > Europe?
        >
        > My thoughts were more along the lines of how the locals would
        > finally react once the Europeans final did arrive. Would the
        sailors
        > stranded in the New World have an effect on how the natives would
        > treat the invading European solders if they knew in advance that
        they
        > infact were not the Gods of their legends? I can see most of the
        > sailors superior attitude wearing out their welcome fairly quick &
        > thus provide the natives with a truer picture of who the white man
        > is.
        > I tend to agree that the most likely point of "Discovery" of the
        new
        > world would come in The area of present day Brazil, but there may
        be
        > a delay of this event for several decades into the 16th cenutry.
        > With extra time and info allowed to the Aztecs would they still
        have
        > been in awe of the Spanish? What happens to the small amount of
        > troops that show up in Central America and face a huge population
        > that doesn't fear them as gods but hates them as invaders.
        > And the events in the new world will not exist in a vaccum, War and
        > politics in Europe will march on, a resistive native population
        could
        > find that they often defeat the white man who must ship men over
        > thousands of miles of ocean. When they don't roll over and give
        up,
        > Spain being a country that has existed unified under one government
        > for only a short time with very limited control over much of it's
        own
        > lands will be less of a invader and more of a trader.
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