Another 1914 puzzle
Lots of discussion today about the formal start of WW1. Made me think back to the profoundly ODD document from the Signal Corps that I'd used before.
Previously I noted several big puzzles in this one short passage.
(1) What were we trying to accomplish by nation-building in Siberia? The real war was in France and Belgium. Russia had been fighting the Krauts, not very effectively.
(2) What were the Japs doing as part of the mission? This question is easy to answer: Japan wanted to own Siberia for Rebensraum, and later used the knowledge acquired during our 'introduction' to take over parts of Siberia. Japan had already defeated Russia in a brief 1905 war over competing claims in China.
(3) Why did we invite the Japs? Or did they simply invite themselves as part of their 1905 spoils?
(4) The casual mention of "Czecho-Slovak forces" indicates that Czechoslovakia was already a nation well before Armistice Day, or at least an entity with a government that could send troops to fight against
Now another puzzle pops up. Russia was in the middle of its Revolution. By late 1918 Lenin was nominally in charge, though I suspect it took a while for his authority to extend into Siberia. By building telegraph and telephone lines, we were helping
the new revolutionary government to extend its authority, which explains why Russian army troops were allowed/ordered to work with us. But it strengthens question (1). What did we hope to gain? Meanwhile, back at Mrs Wilson's Ranch, Mrs Wilson and Colonel House were fighting against real terrorism by a wide variety of Communist and Leftist rebels. This wasn't as much of a paradox as it seems now, because those rebels were not yet taking orders
from Moscow ... but they did admire
= = = = =
Much later: Solved the puzzle.