The New Delhi Conference
Point of Divergence:  Hitler dies in a car crash in February of 1941.
Flash forward to 1956 New Delhi:
Part 1:  The Racket-buster Goes to the Gangsters
President Dewey was more nervous for this summit than he had been for any other point in his Presidency.  Oh sure, he had handled international affairs before, it seemed Americas destiny that it's Presidents would have to focus on them for the foreseeable future, but he'd never handled anything like this.  Come to think of it, the world hadn't seen anything like this since . . . Roman Times?  Oh sure, the Versailles conference had had a collection of great leaders, but that wasn't like this conference. This was truly a meeting of equals.
He'd been briefed by the OSS on both of them of course.  The US had spent millions over the last decade and a half trying to penetrate those two regimes. It had been hard expensive work, but it was just beginning to show some results. Hopefully.  He knew as much about the other two as agent after agent and report after report had been able to find.  And yet . . .  he never truly understood them.  In a way, they reminded him of the gangsters he used to prosecute, but in others they were completely alien.  The gangsters just wanted your money.  These men seemed to be trying to own your very soul.  They thought in such different ways from him and all his friends that it was hard for him to know their minds as he knew others.  They were as alien to him as any of the US's allies in Asia were.
Ugh.  Asia.  That was a headache.  It was popularized in a book by some English chap that the US ruled East Asia and it's offshore Islands while the Reich ruled Europe, Africa and the Middle East, and the Soviets ruled the vast hinterland and North Asia.  President  Dewey wished he ruled Asia.  No, Dewey wished he never had to THINK about Asia.  Chaing was always threatening to invade North China and liberate it from it's Soviet puppet government, and he was screaming at Japan's rearmament.  Hell, all of Asia was screaming at Japan's rearmament. Ugh.  Dewey felt uneasy about it himself, but with the dagger of the People Democratic Republic of Korea pointed at it, what choice did he and the Japanese have?  And oh, so many other problems.  None of which were helped by the other two men he was going to meet.
Well that was the point of this summit after all.  To, hopefully, lessen tensions.  And they needed lessening. Even the US, who was relatively safe in the world, was on edge these days.  The revelations that the KKK and even some politicians had been taking money from Nazi agents to oppose Dewey's desegregation campaign (like those politicians needed any encouragement anyways) had caused tempers to flair all across the country.  Oh sure, they all claimed they had no idea it originated from Europe, but no one cared.  Dewey didn't certainly.  Still, he couldn't help feeling that the Commission on Un-Patriotic Activities was going too far in some respects.  Oh well. One had to take the good with the bad.  It looked like his final package on Civil Rights would pass with a good enough majority.  Combined with the immigration reform, that wouldn't look bad as a way to end his presidency.
Of course, this summit would be even more important.  In a very real sense the future of the world depended on it.  That very pressure was like a mountain on his brain.  Every word they said would be analyzed for generations.  Every act made, promise un-kept, treaty proposed, agreements reached, argument made, EVERYTHING, would reverberate in such a way that it could effect millions, possibly even billions of people. How could those thoughts not weigh on a guy?  Sometimes he wished he would have stuck with dealing with lesser gangsters. Still, he had sought this power and now it was his responsibility.  With that in mind he stepped through the final doors, and readied himself for his meeting with next two most powerful men in the world, Reinhard Heidrich and Latrenti Beria.
The New Delhi Conference Part 2:  It Can?t Be Helped
Lavrenti Beria disliked being out of the glorious Soviet Union.  It was only there that he truly felt at home.  There he was in control.  There he knew how things operated.  And best of all, there he was the absolute ruler with the power of life or death over everyone.  And he enjoyed using that power.  But outside . . . different rules applied.  He?d been interacting on the world stage for a while now, and had picked up a trick or two, but it still felt uncomfortable.
He would manage in this as he had managed in everything.  For Lavrenti had held many caps in his life.  Head of the NKVD.  Chief of the Gulag System.  Occupier of Northern China and Korea.  Head of the Soviet A-bomb project.  And now . . . Father of the People, General Secretary of the Communist Party, Generalissimo of the Soviet Union, and one of the three most powerful men in the world.  Three.  There had been another three once.  Molotov, Malenkov, and him.  Communal leadership they had called it.  It didn?t work of course.  They had plotted against him, but by Lenin?s Ghost he had just managed to move first.  If he hadn?t gotten wind of it in time . . . well then he would have been the one to end up ?shot while trying to escape.?
And now he faced a new triumvirate.  But these he couldn?t simply have thrown in a cell and interrogated.  These were leaders in their own right, with states and mighty armies and nuclear weapons at their call.
Nuclear weapons.  Beria disliked the things.  He still shuddered when he thought how close the Soviet Union had been to fighting a nuclear war.  Stalin had once said that A-bombs were only good for threatening those with weak nerves.  No one could accuse Beria of having weak nerves, but the idea of his cities being turned into melted slag terrified him.  To have one bomb destroy what had taken centuries of toil to build . . . it was not the way the world should work.  Nichevo.
The world was as it is, and he would have to work with it.  One of the reasons for his agreeing to come to this conference was in the hope that he could arrange some sort of arms limitations.  The race with the US wasn?t that bad, but with the Third Reich it was spiraling out of control.  Bomb after bomb.  Plane after plane.  And every one of them increasing the power of the Army.
So many weapons just a hair trigger away, many placed right near the most heavily fortified border in the world.  Lavrenti rubbed his head.  Was it merely a matter of time, until all that he had worked for was destroyed?  If so, he would bring down the Fascists pigs with his dying breath.  But he didn?t want to.  He just wanted for things to go on as they were.
Lavrenti hoped that he was not making a mistake by leaving the Soviet Union.  His position was rather secure, but he worried.  He had come close to being removed before, he did not wish for it to happen a second time.  His economic reforms had been hard to get through.  Many people had just put their heads in the sand to the problems that the Soviet Union was facing.  But he couldn?t do that.  He KNEW just how bad things were.  He KNEW the dangers that the Soviet Union faced if it fell too far behind.  And he KNEW what had to be done.  Who cared what color the tractor was, as long as it plowed wheat?    But others couldn?t see that.  They muttered about ?deviation? under their breaths.  They worried that the Soviet Union was abandoning the quest for ?true communism.?  Lavrenti merely shrugged.  Well for those who couldn?t see it his way there was always the Gulag.
Of course, one of the loudest protestors against his changes was someone who he couldn?t throw in the Gulag.  Chairman of the Peoples Republic of China (what everybody else simply called North China) Mao was never tiring in denouncing him and laying claim to the title of leader of the world communist revolution.    Lavrenti had been dealing with Mao for a while now, and had come to dislike him.  Mao was too fanatical, too pushy, and too hubristic.  If Lavrenti thought that Stalin?s opinion of nuclear weapons was too extreme, he thought that Mao?s was in-fucking-sane.  He had done everything in his power to keep Mao from obtaining them.  Because if he did, how long would it be until he launched a war to unify China?  And Beria could do nothing to stop him.  How he longed for the days when the Soviet Union occupied Northern China, and Mao had to take what they gave him and like it.  He still remembered the screams of rage when Stalin had forced him to accept and armistice and rule Northern China instead of going for the whole thing.  With the Red Army occupying most of Northern China, Stalin could get away with something like that.  Beria knew that he couldn?t.  People were already talking about the Sino-Soviet ?Split? and how Mao not attending this conference was just a further sign of deteriorating relationships between the two most powerful communists states in the world.  Nichevo.
This meeting would undoubtedly touch on China, but that was an ongoing problem that would probably never be solved.  It would be better for him to focus more of his attention on places where real issues could be improved in a short time without a lot of complications, like the Middle East.  The Soviet Union, The Third Reich, and the US all had interests there, and it was a cause of friction at times.  Hopefully some of those issues could be cleared up.
Lavrenti Beria took a deep breath, looked over his notes, and stepped through the doors to the meeting that would change the world.
The New Delhi Conference Part 3:  To save the world from intellectual and moral decay
Reinhard Tristan Heydrich basked at the sight of the rich dark land below him.  Village after village flew beneath his jet as he whisked to his destination.  White Men had ruled these people once, but no longer.  This was no longer the British Raj, but rather the independent nation of India.  If Heydrich wasn?t so intent on his flying he would have shaken his head in pity at the poor deluded Englishmen.  To surrender your rule because of some petty protests . . . it boggled Heydrich?s mind.  The English were obviously in a state of decay.  His job, his sworn duty, was to ensure that such did not happen to the Reich.
He was sure he was up to it.  One did not become ruler of Europe without processing some talents.  In some ways, he missed the days when he was struggling for power.  That was an interesting time.  Never had he felt such a thrill as when he had tested his cunning and strength against all those who had wanted to be where he was now.  Well . . . perhaps not exactly where he was.  Many of his former colleagues couldn?t handle what he was doing right now.  Flying a ?Flying Wing? was no easy task.  Even after a decade of research and development, the stabilization was still a bitch for anyone other than a skilled pilot.  Many considered it too dangerous for the Fuher of the Third Reich to ride, let alone fly, in one.  But that was probably why he was doing it.  Reinhard enjoyed nothing more than testing himself in dangerous situation, from flying, to fencing, to shooting, to . . . international negotiations.  He smiled at the thought.  This WOULD be an interesting meeting.  Perhaps he would once again experience that feeling of competition.  True competition against his equals, not against underlings desperate to fawn over him and perform his every wish.  But . . . were they his equals?
Heydrich thought about that for a moment.  Their countries were probably as powerful as the Third Reich.  That thought that pained him in a way, but nuclear weapons were a great equalizer.  He was sure that the Whermacht could destroy the Red Army in a fair fight, but some good that would do if Berlin were then melted to a slag.  And America . . . was so damn far away.  Which was just one of the reasons the Reich was poring money into long range bombers as well as missiles.  America was far, but it was getting closer every day.  But that was there countries, what about the men?  Beria was as ruthless and cold hearted as he was.  Which wasn?t surprising considering they came from the same profession.  But was Beria as smart as he?  Perhaps . . . Heydrich was impressed with the reforms Beria was implementing.  He had read the reports on Soviet industry and things had begun to improve sense Beria had taken over.
Dewey?   Dewey was hard to grasp, as was much of America.  It was so chaotic and disorderly, and yet it was also one of the top three.  Heydrich didn?t understand that.  Perhaps it was as Bismarck said, God likes fools, drunks, and the United States of America.
Of course, the United States was also filled with problems.  Dewey?s Desegregation campaign was causing lots of internal dissent, especially in the South.  The Reich had used that to it?s advantage, funneling lots of money to various Racially Progressive organizations, like the KKK.  But when a REPORTER of all things uncovered the link between the Reich and various groups it had caused a serious backlash.  Heydrich was actually somewhat surprised at that.  Of course the Reich would give those groups money.  They were fighting the good fight and needed all the help they could get.  But the media didn?t see it that way and had brainwashed much of the public too.  Now the committee of un-American Activities was shutting down and harassing many of the Reich?s best friends in America.
Of course, Heydrich knew who was really responsible for that. The Jews.  The eternal subhuman.  There were so damn many of them in America.  More than even in Israel.
Israel.  Heydrich smiled a dark menacing smile at the thought.  In his own cold and calculating way, Reinhard was rather proud of Israel and considered it one of his more brilliant strokes.  When Peace with Britain had come in ?41, it was more or less of peace of equals.  The Reich hadn?t even been able to get it?s African colonies back, but in a good deal thanks to him it had included a small little provision in the peace treaty that Britain would allow Germany to send Jews to Palestine.  In the months after Hitler?s death there was a number of discussions of what to do about the Jewish question.  Once the war against the Soviet Union was put on indefinite hold the question was raised of where exactly Germany was going to put all of the Jews it controlled.  Some were even talking about just killing all of them, which wile attractive was also a little impractical in Heydrichs mind.  It sounded good, but was a bit of waste of materials.  And then the peace negotiations came and well, Germany wanted their lands to be Judenfree somehow, and that was as good a way as any and better than most.  Heydrich particularly liked it because it helped Germany in so many ways.  It had taken some tricky diplomacy, and some outright bribes, but most of the Arab world blamed the English rather than Germany for all those Jews flooding into Palestine.  And once Israel was formed, their animosity was crystallized and Germany stepped into the role of protecting the Arabs from the Jews.  It was a glorious stroke if Heydrich did say so himself.  And their was the money of course.  After the first million Jews were shipped over, Heydrich quickly realized that their was a better way to do this; make the Jews pay for it.  In addition to having to abandon all their property, all Jews in the Reich had to pay a leaving fee which kept getting higher every year.  Their were still a lot of Jews in the Reich working in various labor camps, but like clockwork Jews in the US or Israel kept making donations to get them out.  And the horror stories they told about life in the Reich just made their relatives want to get MORE Jews out, and those Jews would often save up to get OTHER Jews out and so on and so on.  So the Reich got the money, the alliance of most Arab states, the slave labor before they left, and what did the US and Israel get?  A bunch of Jews.
This time Reinhard did shake his head, causing him to quickly jerk the plane to the left, which caused him to quickly jerk it back to the right when it turned too far.  The plane was now in danger of going into a spin, dangerously easy in a flying wing.  His heart gave a jolt, and then training took over. Slowly and ever so carefully he pulled the plane gently back.  It slid a little in the right direction and then . .. it was once again back to a stable altitude.   Only then did he begin breathing again.
That could have been bad.  He had to pay more attention to flying his plane.  And he did, landing safely an hour lately.  Unbuckling his straps he climbed out of the glistening new aircraft and began walking towards the conference.  Hedrich had great plans for the world, it was time to see which of them he could acomplish.
The New Delhi Conference Part 4:  A Tryst With Destiny
Jawaharlal Nehru surveyed the conference with an air of sublime satisfaction.  Here was truly an event for good in the world, and one that had been too long in coming.  A gathering of many of the leaders and decision makers of the world, not in their various alliance blocks, but from all over and all gathered together in the cause of peace and brotherhood.
?Well, perhaps not all,? he thought with a look at the delegation of the Reich.  India was firmly and unequivocally neutral in the War for Hegemony (as it was called in India), but sometimes he sincerely wished India could be more neutral to some countries than to others.  The Reich offended him in a way that the Soviet Union, and the United States didn?t.  Both of those countries had their problems to be sure, but neither espoused an ideology so incompatible with progress and the advancement of the human race as did Germany.  Nehru would never forget the look of mild befuddlement when he had lectured the German representative on the proper socialist policies of equality, only to get a rather blunt and undiplomatic reply of, ?What exactly do you think the nationalism in National Socialism means?  The Reich is set up for the benefit of Germans.  So we support Germans.  In a way, NSDAP is very similar to your party, in that it always supports it?s core constituency.  After all famine seems to fall unevenly hard on the Muslim west of India, as well as Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra, farley regularly, while if those areas that are the core support of the your party start to have trouble, well, then they get grain, and get it fast.  We assumed this was deliberate and wise engineering on your part to keep the Hindus on top and the Muslims down, so as to not be contaminated by there incompatible culture and race.  Is it not so??
Nehru went on to give an hour lecture on how this was not so.  He carefully explained the backward nature of those provinces, how India?s infrastructure was still hamstrung by the lasting effects of colonialism, how India cared for all her children, how he had bended over backwards to the Muslim regions to insure that they never followed through with their illegal threats of succession, how the conflict between Hindus and Muslims was mostly a question of economic disparities or clashing "class interests" rather than religious differences and incompatible customs, how Muslim grievances that they were being stifled under the Hindu-dominated Congress were completely untrue, and various other things culminating in the great glory of the future of India.  And at the end of his triumphant speech, he noticed the German Representative struggling to stay awake.  Germans.  All they cared about was power.
And someday, someday soon, India would have that power.  His five year plan would see to that.  Hopefully.  It he could get the program he wanted, and only his program, Nehru knew that he could make it work.  But his development programs were half-caste.  As soon as he thought that word, he mentally stopped himself.  That wasn?t a progressive word, and he shouldn?t use it, no matter how accurate it might be.
Nehru wanted to focus on the new Temples of India, and build damns, and factories, and power plants, concentrated in or near the cities.  That way, India could leapfrog over the intermediate stage and arrive at the doorstop of the modern world in a short time.  But his was not the only view on the subject.  Gandhi, whom he thought of as a father, kept pushing his party to be more moral, and more just, which was all well and good, but what frustrated Nehru was how Gandhi?s influencing was diverting so much of India?s scare resources to village development.  What hope did India have if she put her strength in the villages instead of in the cities?  Villages were the past, Cities the future.  Gandhi didn't see it that way.  The Village was the real India, the heart, the soul, not the monstrous city.  He shook his head.  Nehru loved Gandhi with all his heart, but his time was past.  And the past is gone.  Now is all there is.
It was time to make the most of now, and do that he would.  Nehru took one last look around the assembly.  Quite a collection from all over the world.  It was a shame this couldn?t happen more regularly.  Perhaps it would soon.  The Germans were finally beginning to crack a little on their unwavering hostility to recreating the League of Nations.  Perhaps someday enemies gathering together would be commonplace.  But that day was not yet.  In this day, it was a rare, and in Nehru?s eyes a beautiful sight.  And it was in his country.  The thought made him smile.
Nehru cleared his throat and began, "Fellow Delegates.  Long years ago we made a tryst with destiny, and now the time comes when we shall redeem our pledge.  A moment like this comes, which comes but rarely in history, when we step out from the old to the new, when an age ends, and when the soul of the world, long suppressed, finds utterance. It is fitting that at this solemn moment we take the pledge of dedication to the service of not just our own nations, but still to the larger cause of humanity.  We shall not fail the world today.  We can not afford to.  I hope you will keep those words in mind and spirit in the days ahead.  I hereby welcome you to the New Delhi Conference."
The New Delhi Conference Part 5:  Keep Pace With the Progress of the World
Yoshida Shigeru, or in western style; Shigeru Yoshida, was so very very tired at the end of the first day of the conference.  He was no longer a young man.  In fact, he was pretty sure this would be his last year in office.  Of course, he had said that before.  After the Socialists took over he had said the same thing.  But three years later the Japanese Democratic Party had a little chat with him.  They stood a very good chance of getting back in power, but they needed him.  He was a known quality, and in the turmoil and instability that the Socialists had made, a good known stable figure was just what the populace wanted.  So, would he come back?  Of course he would.  Yoshida knew his duty and knew where his country needed to go.  And the Socialists were not heading it there.  It had taken his countrymen, and countrywomen now that they had the vote, three years to realize that, but realize it they had.
Or at least a plurality had realized it.  The Democratic and Socialist Parties were too evenly matched for Yoshida?s taste.  There was always conflict, and struggling, debating, and dealings between the two parties.  Already he looked into the future and feared that the Democratic Party would never be able to achieve the level of stability that Japan needed.  It was all well and good to have multiple parties, but it would be so much better if only one of them actually did the ruling.  The nation would be spared all this disharmony and could fully get back on track.  But it was not to be.  Japan was quickly becoming a de facto two-party system, wheather he liked it or not.
There was much in the world that happened wheather he liked it or not.  Like Korea.  Yoshida could not help but let out a sigh whenever he thought of that land.  He was no imperialist, but surely things were better under Japanese control than under that of Kim Il Sung?  He had read reports on Kim?s rule and it distressed him.  What distressed him more was that it was such a dagger pointed at Japan.
In some ways he actually thought the Senkaku/Diaoyu Island Crisis had been a blessing for Japan.  It was humiliating that the Socialists had let Korea, (KOREA his mind shouted), invade one of the islands of Japan, but in the end it had all worked out.  The Americans, after a bit of waffling, had decided that they couldn?t just let the islands be taken by force.  The president it would set would just be too dangerous to let stand.  Of course, the fact that it was also dangerously close to the US protectorate of Okinawa didn?t hurt either.  So the ?quarantine? begun.  It was actually a war, but a tiny one.  What chance did the Korean navy, less than a decade old at the time, have against the Navy that had managed to defeat the IJN?  It hadn?t stopped Kim from trying though, but in the end the Islands were taken back, and with a little pressure from the SU a deal was worked out.  But it had sent shock waves though Japan of just how vulnerable the home islands were.  And so, the Socialist were out, and he was back in.
He was increasing the Japanese Self Defense Force at a decent enough level, trying to get the right mix so the economy kept growing, but also so that Japan also had a mote of security.  But he didn?t know what he could really do about Korea.  Since the beginning of the Meiji era, Japanese security had rested upon not letting a hostile power encircling it.  But now, that was not so.  Soviets to the North, Kim in Korea, Mao in Northern China, and Chiang (who had no love for the Japanese) in Taiwan.  Japan used to have security, but like so much, that was washed away in the war.  So much was lost then.  So much of Japan was burned to the ground, and the devastation from the invasion of Kyushu was mind-boggling.  Only now, over a decade later, was Japan finally recovering from the war.  Cities were rebuilt, industry was growing, people weren?t starving.  But it wasn?t the same.  In some ways that was good, Yoshida heartily aproved of Japan?s re-found liberites and freedoms (even if things didn?t always go the way he wanted), but in others it was depressing.
Japan was no longer strong.  Japan was no longer stable.  Japan was, in a very real sense, no longer independent.  She could not stand on her own without the United States.  He had realized and accepted that, and was working with them as best he could.  He got along with Dewey all right.  They had met a couple of times at various conferences, and the Americans were finally just beginning to think of Japan as a true ally.  Not on the same scale as Britain, but getting better all the time.
Time.  That was the key.  Japan need time to grow, time to heal, time to develop, and it needed a time of peace.  Japan knew in it?s very sould how bad war could be.  He didn?t think that the Americans, or the Russians, or the Germans knew in their heart of hearts what Total War could do to a country.  He had to make them see.  He had to work behind the scenes, he had to talk and shmooze, he had to do anything and everything it took to make them see.
The price of failure was too high.  For, if at some point the ?peace? between the three powers should fail, then it would not only result in an ultimate collapse and obliteration of the Japanese nation, but also it would lead to the total extinction of human civilization.
The New Delhi Conference Part 6: To Fulfill a Dream
Chiang Kai-shek as his name was sometimes spelled in the West, peeked into the conference room and was glad that the Man Who Wasn?t Here wasn?t here.  That may sound strange, but there were a lot of Men Who Weren?t Here at this conference.  The Koreans and to a lesser extent the Russians seemed to have an unexpectedly large contingent of Chinese diplomats, a surprising number of whom didn?t speak any Korean or Russian.  It was an open secret that they weren?t actually there to represent anybody except Chairman Mao, but it wasn?t polite to mention it.
Damn politeness, and damn Mao.  If he wanted to come to the damn meeting he could have come, but oh no.  Mao wanted to have his cake and eat it too.  He wanted to score political points and prove just what a hard liner he was by avoiding all contact with running dog regimes, and at the same time he wanted his eyes, ears, and mouths to be here to represent Communist China.
Chiang would do everything he could to snatch that cake out of Mao?s mouth.  Which, if he was honest with himself, wasn?t much.  Oh there were various procedures his diplomats were using, motions to made, and other such tricks of the trade, but the countermeasures were there as well, and he was under American pressure to just let things be.  They actually viewed having unofficial representatives of Mao as a good thing.  The Americans.  They were always holding him back.  After the Soviets took half of his country, he had wanted to liberate it, but the Americans had more important things to do.  Their war was over, and all they wanted was a peaceful world.  What did it matter to them if China was cut asunder?
It mattered to them now, just as it had mattered for the last decade even if they had been too stupid to realize it.  For China was a running sore that was sucking up a lot of wealth and energy from both the US and the USSR.  Neither Mao nor he had ever launched a full scale invasion, but it had come close to that more times than he could remember.  And guerilla attacks were not cheap to defend against, or to launch either.  The damn had held, but Chiang knew that it would break some day, and then it would be up to him to make his dream of a re-unified China a reality.  He had to be prepared for that day.
He saw it so clearly in his mind.  Himself at the front of a Second Northern Expedition , leading the victorious Nationalist army into Shanghai, and Nanking once again, just like he did over thirty years ago.  Thirty years.  How the world, and he, had changed in that time.  Thirty years ago he would never have imagined that something like the Atomic Bomb was possible.  Now his scientists were working frantically to build a Chinese version.  But again, the Americans were holding him back.  Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons was another big issue at this conference, and a subject of this meeting, and all of the Big Three were pushing for it.  Of course they were.  They already had nukes, so why should they want even their allies to get such weapons?  But Chiang needed nukes to re-unify China.  How could Mao stand against him if he possessed such a weapon?  But the Americans were afraid of starting ?World War II? as it was so dramatically called by the pacifists.
And it wasn?t just in geo-politics that the Americans were trying to bully him, but in internal affairs as well.  With trade increasing, and more and more US factories setting up mini-shops and outlets in China, the Americans were beginning to get seriously concerned with the corruption of his regime.  Chiang himself was personally ascetic, but he just couldn?t afford a showdown with so much of his staff at the moment.  But the Americans didn?t care, or didn?t realize.  They just wanted reform.  Both economic and democratic.  Oh, they were polite enough, and rarely made demands, but always there was that nagging little voice.
He had given thought to joining the Nazi side, of course.  When you got right down to it, his was a fascist regime.  But no . . . not yet at least.  The Nazis weren?t offering anything that the Americans couldn?t give and lacked a number of advantages (how on earth could the Nazis keep Japan in line?) plus there was the racial aspect of it to think of as well.  The Nazis made no-bones about viewing non-Europeans as inferior and only fit to be ruled with a firm hand.  How stupid would a non-white country have to be to ally to such a regime?
And it wasn?t like the Germans were actively wooing him either.  All of their effort seemed to be going towards getting South Africa out of the Anglo-American side.  A blind man could tell there was a lot of interactions between the two at this conference.  Something was going to happen there . . . Oh well.  South Africa was far away and not much of a concern to him.
So he would have to stay on the American side for now.  Make a concession here, one there.  Never enough to make them think he was their lackey, but just enough to keep them barely satisfied and sending the money and advisors.  It was a tricky game, but one he was good at playing.  He had decades of experience at it, after all.
So Chiang smoothed his uniform and extended his hand to President Dewey.  ?Greeting Mr. President,? he said.  ?It is great to see you again.  We have a great opportunity at this conference to further the cause of freedom,  strengthen our alliance, and ensure the preservation of peace in the world.  I only hope we can live up to our responsibilities.?  As President Dewey replied he saw out of the corner of his eye the Man Who Wasn?t Here get turned away just as the door closed.  This meeting was heavily restricted with only heads of state, and one aid who was pre-approved months ago, being allowed to attend.  And the Man Who Wasn?t Here didn?t qualify.  So at least Chiang could savor one victory for today.
The New Delhi Conference Part 7:  When In The Course Of Human Events
Johannes Gerhardus Strijdom hands were sweating as he walked towards the podium.  He was no stranger to intense political maneuvers, but this was his biggest yet.  It had been planned months in advance of course.  Working behind the scenes he had secured the agreement in all but fact, and now it was time to make it a reality.  Contrary to what he knew people would shout later on, he didn?t consider it a betrayal.  It was a decision that was obvious to anyone who actually paid attention to the way things actually were.  His people were going one way, they were going another.  There was nothing to be done about it but adjust his country accordingly.
It was being done nice and legally of course.  Strijdom practiced law in his younger days, and knew it?s benefits well. His predecessor had failed at getting rid of the colored franchise.  It was constitutionally entrenched but Strijdom saw the way though.  He simply enlarged, and changed the composition of both the senate and the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court. Once both bodies were packed with NP loyalists, the end was never in doubt.  And now, with his most audacious move since then, the end was once more inevitable.
Looking back on that case, he was amazed about how much fuss it had caused.  So many people had protested it, but now even Apartheid wasn?t enough for the radicals.  The conservatives were pushing for separate development, but now that seemed too easy, and didn?t look modern enough.  No, the new White Destiny was all the rage.  As Johannes looked into the future, it was murky and he was uncertain what it would hold for his country.  But then if people could be certain for the future, than they wouldn?t need statesman, and Strijdom definitely saw himself as a statesman.  He was taking his people into a new era, a new direction, and fulfilling that long dreamt of dream by all those old Boers.  But it was he that was making it a reality.  He spied Heydrich across the platform as he reached the podium.  That gave him his final boost of confidence.  Heydrich knew what was what.  He knew what needed to be done, and he knew how to reward his friends.
He cleared his voice before speaking.  ?I can _not_ say that I am proud to be here representing the Dominion of South Africa.  I can not say that because it is no longer strickly speaking true.  I am no longer the Prime Minister of the Dominion of South Africa.  Instead, as legislation now being passed through parliament will show, I am in fact Prime Minister of the REPUBLIC of South Africa.?
He paused and took a quick breath to let what he had just said sink in to the assembled deligates.  ?For far too long, South Africa had stood for the moderate line, the safe line, the appeasement line.  All to gain the favor of those who would destroy what we have worked centuries to build.  No more.  We can not abide by the horribly destructive and reactionary racial policies of the United States and the British Empire.  All races are not equal, and it is time to draw the line in the sand against the destroyers of the white race.  The new South African republic hopes for good relationships with both countries, and gives them our fondest wish that they will see the error of their ways.  But from now on we must look to our true friend, the German Reich, to help us defend our way of life.?
As Strijdom looked at the faces of the crowd he saw the smiling look of Heydrich, the anger in Dewey?s, and the outright shock in the British Prime Ministers.  And as he saw this one word went through his mind, ?Gotcha.?  [And of course the standard disclaimer;  The thoughts of racial fucknuts are not those of the author.]
The New Delhi Conference Part The Last:  The Necessary Consequence
Prime Minister of the Dominion of Israel, David Ben-Gurion looked around and saw all the people saying goodbye, posing for one last photo, and just generally getting ready to go home.  He was glad it was over.  It wasn?t that he thought this conference hadn?t done any good, he didn?t, but rather that it had done all it could do for now.  There were serious issues between the countries of the world, and it was pure hubris to expect them to be solved in one meeting.
He looked over at the big three (Dewey, Reinhard, and Beria) posing for one last time.  There was the flash-pop of the camera?s light bulb, and at that exact moment David knew he was seeing a picture that would be presented in countless history books for decades to come.  After 70 years of life, and a generation of being a major force in his nation, David knew history when he saw it.
He was the leader of seven and a half million people after all.  He made history every day.  He had done his best to represent their interests here, but while he might be a major player in the middle east, here he felt like he was just one more pawn on a checkerboard.  It was not a feeling he liked.
Some thought that was why he was the first major leader to leave the conference, but they were wrong.  Most of the others had one last arrangement to attend too, one last photo, one last promise to make, before they left for home.  Prime Minister Ben-Gurion, on the other hand,  had more important things.  Once or twice at the conference, David could feel a small lump of envy grow in his heart as he dealt with the British PM and the American President.  Both of their countries were so secure.  So safe.  Oh sure, there was always the threat of nuclear weapons, but they didn?t know what it was like to be under constant attack.  Sniping, sniping, sniping,  It wore on a people, and his had already been through a lot.  At times he felt as if he were holding onto his country by his fingernails.  It was so hard at times.  It?s not like most Israelis chose to go to Israel.  If given the chance, most of them would have gone to the US in a heartbeat, but those gates, while not closed, were still pretty tight.  So when the Reich forced Britain to let it ship it?s Jews to Palestine, millions were dumped with no more than the clothes on their backs in a harsh land already crowded with people.
David didn?t know how many more Jews Israel could fit.  Water shortages were chronic, the majority of his new nation's limited resources were spent in integrating the immigrants, but there just wasn?t enough to go around.  Israel felt so hog-podged at times.  No matter how hard he tried, it was losing much of it?s vital Kitz bah flavor.  It was turning more and more into . . . well into a something vaguely resembling a pre-1939 Western European state.  David was pragmatic in his socialism, but he couldn?t help but think that some vital element was being lost.  It effected everything from music, to food, to even language.  Despite state pressure, English and Polish were fiercely battling Yiddish for the title of the de-facto language of Israel.
For the entire Zionist movement?s history the chief problem had been getting Jews to come to the new land.  Now, it was how to fit them in.  He knew he couldn?t abandon them to the Nazis, but where could they be put?  The Palestinian enclaves had stopped shrinking years ago.  A good many of them had left over the last 15 years when Europe?s Jews poured in, but those that still remained seemed determine to stay.  Regardless of how outnumbered they might be.  With half a million new immigrants a year, how long until Israel was forced to do something drastic?  Already the Eretz Yisrael faction was growing in power and demands.
Of course finding space for immigrants to live, wasn?t the only problem Israel had.  The Arabs had never accepted the establishment of the Dominion of Israel as legitimate.  The Chanukah War was proof enough of that, and the constant sniping along the borders was infuriating.  They thought they could attack Israel with impunity, and then run and hide behind the Reich?s protective shield.  They were wrong.
Especially Nasser.  He was the worst.  He was the worst of them all.  Did he really think that he could blockade Israeli shipping?  Did he really think he could shell Israel settlements?  Did he think that his acts of terrorism would go forever unavenged?  Apparently he did.  But now he would be shown the errors of his ways.  He had overstepped his bounds.  The nationalization of the Suez canal had been the final straw for the Mother Country.  The British Lion had finally given permission for her cub to react.    The operation was going to be launched as soon as he sat down in Israel.  If everything went off right, it would be in full swing as all the leaders at the conference were on their way home, thus giving Israel a few more precious hours of action before the international community would be able to do anything about it.  Hopefully they would accept it as a fait acompli.
For that was the real question.  There wasn?t a doubt in David?s mind that Israel could defeat Egypt, but there was a great deal of worry about the reaction from other countries.  Nasser had taken a middle course between both the Soviets and the Nazis, thankfully.  So neither side was guaranteed to step up and protect him.  But what if they did?  What if the Nazis pointed their nuclear tipped missiles at Israel and threatened war if the campaign was not called off?  What if Britain didn?t send the help it promised?  What if the US wouldn?t allow the British to help?  What would the Soviets do?  How far could things end up going?
So many questions.  But Ben-Gurion knew he was a man of destiny.  It was not his role to merely allow history to flow by him, but instead to shape it to his will.  He just could not allow Israel to be attacked with impunity.  He knew that war was the only course for his country, and he would face the consequences with a stout heart.
Within moments of landing he spoke his fateful command, ?The Sinai operation is go.?  And the planes took off, and the men marched.  Soon after that command, he also got a report that the last major figure had left the New Delhi Conference.  The grandest meeting in perhaps all of history was now over.  It had been a worthy event that had helped the world.  David only hoped there would someday be a second one.
OK you may be asking, ?What the hell kind of ending was that??  Well, I never set out for this to be a TL.  It wasn?t supposed to be about a passage through time, but rather a moment in time.  I wanted to present a world, at one point, give some brief background how it got there, but mainly focus in on what it was like at that moment.  And I think I succeeded.    Questions:  Do you think I succeeded in my goal?
Would you like to see this world at some point in the future?  (I?m thinking 60?s)  [This won?t happen for a long time if ever, btw]
Any general comments you want to add?
Email me at [email protected]
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