|Part of The Resource Wars|
A British infantryman repels a German attack in northern France, during the summer of 2065.
| Many unsteady alliances,|
| Many unsteady alliances,|
|Many individual leaders, warlords and revolutionary leaders||Many individual leaders, warlords and revolutionary leaders|
|Tens of Millions||Tens of Millions|
|The European Wars were actually several conflicts over the period of two decades that are often considered to be part of a larger conflict, much like how some consider the two world wars to fall under a single banner.|
Their economies ruined by the war in the Middle East, many smaller European nations went bankrupt. As a result, many of the more powerful nations turned them into "protectorates", exploiting what little resources they had left. This all but put an end to the commonwealth, as countries could no longer afford the collectivization of resources. After it was officially dissolved on February 5, 2060, elections took place throughout the various countries, many electing radical militaristic parties into office.
Military alliances were formed, and by the Spring, war had broken out amongst the former commonwealth, with battles raging across the European continent. As years passed, short-lived treaties were signed, and many regional battles took place. As many of the stronger European nations began to go bankrupt themselves, they soon disintegrated into many smaller states, much like medieval Europe. The fighting only came to an end in October of 2077, when nuclear fires engulfed the world, turning it into a radioactive wasteland.
The European Wars are generally considered part of the larger "Resource Wars" that were fought between the oil-crisis of the 2050s and the great war of 2077.
The pyrrhic victory of the middle eastern war had led to dissent an unease on the European home front. Great Britain and France now had to deal with dissent and insurgencies in their colonies, and the collapse of infrastructure in the middle east led to chaos and confusion as soldiers attempted to return to their home countries. What was supposed to be a war to provide more resources had actually had the opposite effect, and many smaller nations began to go bankrupt that spring. The final meeting of the commonwealth delegates took place on January 11, 2060 in Brussels, Belgium.
Many countries complained that they could no longer afford the centralization of their resources after the war, and announced their departure from the organization. Germany was the first to pull out on the 15th of that month, Austria and Hungary following suit two days later. By February, many other European states had left the organization, much to the dismay of France and (to a lesser extent, Great Britain).
In the secessionist nations, new elections were held throughout the rest of that spring, often bringing radical, militaristic parties into power. Konrad Heller, newly elected German chancellor and member of the radical "Democratic Socialist People's Party", made plans to annex several nations with significant German populations, such as Austria and Luxembourg. Yugoslavia elected a Marxist-styled governments into power, while Bulgaria, Hungary and Finland turned to fascism.
France, determined to avoid another war like the one 115 years previous, renewed pacts with the remaining member-states of the commonwealth, including Britain, Italy, Norway and the Netherlands. On February 13, Belgium's government collapsed amidst financial ruin, and chaos took to the streets. France and the Netherlands agreed to partition the country along its ethnic lines (With the Wallonia region going to France, Flanders to the Dutch). This caused controversy, as Heller demanded that Germany be allowed to annex the German-speaking portion of the former nation. France refused, and began to mobilize its Army along the eastern border. Tensions rose rapidly, and on February 29, a mis-communication on the French side led to a short exchange of artillery fire, culminating in the Germans responding with a rocket attack that decimated the village of Neuf-Brisach. This incident (Known as the "Fire on the Rhine") significantly wounded France's image on the diplomatic stage.
Towards the east, full-blown war erupted between Hungary and Romania. The fascist government of Hungary had its eyes on the Romanian oil fields (One of the last sources of petroleum in Europe), and after a staged attack on the Hungarian chancellery, tanks rolled over the border, initially making huge gains in Transylvania. Britain and France were horrified, but there was little that could be done to stop the bloodshed.
On April 1, Germany delivered an ultimatum to the Swiss government, demanding that they cede all German-speaking regions (The majority of the country) to the Greater German Confederation (Consisting of Germany, Austria and Luxembourg), or else they would invade. When the Swiss refused, the French and Italians pledged their support, and began to mobilize their troops. For a week, there was little activity, but on April 10, when the Luftwaffe bombed Bern, France and Italy declared war on the Germans. However, Heller had relied on this, and ordered a swift mechanized advance into the Alsace region of France, taking Strasbourg on the 11th. Later that day, the British also declared war on the Germans, following up with a combined Anglo-Italian thrust into the Austrian Alps.In the Balkans, the Yugoslav Army launched a simultaneous, two-pronged thrust into Albania and Bulgaria, planning on intimidating Greece into avoiding war over a planned invasion of Romania. At 6:00 in the morning of May 2nd, Yugoslavian tanks plowed across both borders. When they had reached Tirana, the Albanian capital, the Yugoslavian army forced the King into exile, turning the country into a Yugoslav protectorate. The Bulgarian Army provided to be more of a challenge, as they took advantage of a retrofitted complex system of border defenses which had been left over from the days of Soviet rule. As a bloody stalemate took hold, vast stretches of territory across both borders were incinerated by the continuous exchange of fire.
That summer, the British and French forces were stretched thin when Spain invaded the British port of Gibraltar, and began bombing border posts on the Franco-Spanish border. With most of their support gone, the German government felt confident enough to open up a second front in the east on July 9th, with the German Luftwaffe bombing Prague and Warsaw. On July 12, the Hungarian Army took advantage of the German aggression, and launched an air-based invasion of the Slovak regions. With the majority of the Czechoslovak military fighting the Germans in the east, the Slovak capital fell three days later. Aftersigning a treaty with the Germans in Budapest, the Hungarians invaded Poland from the southeast, ending the long tradition of warm Polish-Hungarian relations.
Both the United States and the U.S.S.R. pledged neutrality just as they had during the Resource Wars, although the latter began to mobilize their military for defensive purposes. The U.S. Congress passed the controversial "Neutrality Act of 2061" preventing all trade with the European nations, despite the opposition from some supporters of the free market.
Siege of Warsaw and Soviet InterventionEdit
With joint German and Hungarian forces encroaching further into Poland, the Soviet Premier at the time, Vladimir Doroshevich issued an ultimatum to the respective leaders of those powers. Initially, the warning went unheeded, and German forces made their way to Warsaw, scattering the Polish forces west of the city.
However, Polish general Andrsej Bukowski and his subordinate officers managed to regroup the Polish forces on the east bank of the Vistula river, wherein the Poles managed to stave off each consecutive push from the German forces. Bukowski famously said, when advised to fall back further to the east as yet more German forces began to arrive and the Luftwaffe continued to pound the city's defenses, "This city is mine!"
For two and a half weeks, from July 21st to August 7th, a stalemate had set in, with attacks followed up by counter-attacks, neither side gaining a decisive upper hand. The Hungarians, following the Vistula river north, proceeded nearly unhindered the entire time, reaching Lublin on August 3rd. A Hungarian armored column, fast approaching Polish defenses south of Warsaw, threatened the stalemate. Worried, Bukowski sent a plea to the Soviets, playing on pre-existing notions of pan-Slavism.
Soviet forces, in response, poured into Poland. Initially, it was a miscommunication that leaked the plea to regional Soviet commanders in Belarus and Ukraine that lead to the intervention, but Doroshevich used it to his advantage and began a full-blown deployment into Poland. The premier sent another warning to the Hungarian and German leadership, stating that the Soviets were not at war, but would respond to violence in-kind. Additionally, if the Germans and Hungarians did not cease advances and air operations, they would be dealt with severely; the thought process was that Germany's leadership would look at history and not want to risk another war against the Soviet Union.
While initially blown off due to lack of good intelligence, the sudden spike in German air losses and the destruction of the lead Hungarian armored column quickly wisened the two belligerent powers to the seriousness of the situation. Within days, the Soviets were standing alongside the Polish on the Vistula river defenses, with Doroshevich himself making a visit to the front, and remarking on the similarity between the siege of Warsaw and the siege of Stalingrad over a hundred years beforehand.
Following the outbreak of the European Wars, Britain and France began mobilizing their forces and drafted thousands of their own citizens into combat. As the fighting intensified and Germany moved closer and closer into Western Europe, the British and French began draft more and more people and eventually, began to deploy soldiers from their African colonies to the European frontlines. Around 2065, with the war having engulfed the entire continent with Britain suffering endless attacks from German bombers and France being besieged to the north by the Germans and to the south by the Spanish, the two nations began drafting more and more of their colonists to fight for the mainland and sent them to the front lines.
Many of the people back at the colonies however, saw the instability taking place in Europe and noticed the desperation and chaotic state their colonial masters were in and so, colonial separatists took up arms and began fighting once again. In Congo, a new group was formed called the Congolese Independence Army and began their war of independence that year starting with an attack on a French army base in the Congolese countryside that recruited and trained colonists for their deployments to Europe. The French, fearing that the insurgency in the Congo could spread to other colonies and expand the war from Europe to beyond its borders, France enlisted the help of its foreign legion and had them sent down to Congo to supress the uprising and maintain security from within its other colonies. Meanwhile in the British colony of Nigeria, the native population took advantage of the mayham in Europe and decided to rebel against their colonial masters. The Nigerian Sovereignty Army was formed and began an insurrection against the British Colonial Government by 2068. In 2072, the British were able to send in a legion of 20,000 troops to Nigeria in support of the colonial government and ended up getting bogged down in a guerilla war with Nigerian separatists.