A window of opportunity 1905 Jul 2, 2022 17:52:40 GMT
Post by stevep on Jul 2, 2022 17:52:40 GMT
The war in the Far East was very far away. The intelligence services of the Scandinavians did notice that their local Communists were still loudly agitating but they seemed to have lost some steam of the previous years; perhaps the gold coffer in Moscow was drying up. Procuring was is a costly business and this one seemed very costly to the Soviets though the Italian contract of trading new Cruisers for Donbas coal indicated they would be ready to use their resources.
There had been Soviet contacts to Scandinavian shipbuilders alike the Italian deal however the Scandinavians would buy their coal in Britain or Germany or Poland and had sufficient steel themselves as well as agricultural produce.
Sovietunion had also tried for an arms deal of various Scandinavian arms designs and ammunition but this had been rejected with the ongoing war in mind. No need to hand over anything as long as Communist agitation were ongoing.
Denmark had reminded the Soviets that they were essentially utilizing the Madsen Arms Factory of Kovrov in Vladimir Oblast though not paying any licence fees and not having done so since the establishment of the factory by 1916; payment of that might be seen as a friendly gesture and a possibility of opening negotiations in areas of interest to the Sovietunion.
No reply would be forthcoming and the issue wasn't brought up again.
Instead Denmark would bring up the issue with the Nordic Brothers; Sweden agreed that it was an important issue and Finland seemed unsure it would be able to defend its borders against the Soviet Juggernaught that had shown its capabilities in Manchouko against a large – if Asian – Power.
The PM's would listen to Professor Niels Bohr and his musings on the shared Atomic Bomb programme; Bohr was confident that the building of the Bomb could be done though the economic cost was horrendous. Bohr was also sure that his team mainly Danish and Swedish scientist's had the theoretical layout for the production of the bomb and subsequent testing of a prototype more or less finalized. Bohr couldn't draw up a time line as there was still the issue of Uranium; the Alunshales of Bornholm and the West Götaland source at Billingen should be able to produce the required amounts but it would need mining something that wasn't ongoing and would be expensive to set up mainly in Denmark that had little experience in mining – except on Bornholm.
Bohr also related that a possible source of income to finance the project at least from the Danish perspective would be the Cryolite mining in southern Greenland a remark that earned him a “sheesh” glance from Danish PM Stauning. Bohr however persevered as he had be told by the Danish Geologists he had worked with on the Uranium prospecting project that war in the Far East had increased the demand for Cryolite somewhat.
At this Stauning told Bohr this to be a political aspect and continue on the science to which Bohr replied that funding the Atombomb project was a political apect too. Stauning then took the scene asking the other PM's of their opinion and willingness to opt into such a huge endeavour.
The answer wasn't clear; the Norwegians wanted to develop their country and was building hydro-electric powerplants to do such in order to electrify the railways to cut down fuel imports which would also open the way to the North of the country. Finland was still struggling industrializing and had a competitor in Norwegian and Swedish logging industries though the Petsamo Mines delivered much needed foreign currency. Denmark still floated upon the waves of the four due to the huge agricultural exports mainly to Britain and Germany but also the other Nordics and its shipbuilding capacity which was in large part a shared enterprise with Norway. Sweden still held sway as the mining and heavy industry of Scandinavia providing Britain and Germany with quality iron ore.
Some economic uplift was needed to be able to really fund the Atombomb programme the Nordics actually wanted as a deterrent to the Sovietunion schemes.
Commercial air transport had been in the works for quite some time but still being for transport and the very wealthy.
This year the Scandinavian Air Transport Firms discuss setting up a joint venture to eliminate double servicing of routes around Europe which is a deficit to all but also to discuss transatlantic flights to get into the much more lucrative US market.
Even if a lot have been achived by the Scandinavians since the turn of the Century and more since the 1905 War with sharing production to avoid money lost on common projects the private ventures isn't really ready for such and Governments are still feeling the effect of the previous decades economic hardship and not prone to support it the negotiations are shelved.
The aircraft able to make the transatlantic transport is on the market but hugely expensive and then there is the question of land or flying boat planes with the respective infrastructure to develop to consider.
Norway also have a wish for developing the communications in the north of the country where a large part of its fishing industry is situated but doesn't have the economic base for realizing such and ships and ferries are relied upon even if a railway line would promise much revenue.
None of the other countries have the same interest not even Denmark and its Northatlantic fishermen in Faeroe Islands and Iceland who also want to attain independence which in the case of Iceland would be determined by referendum by 1944. No need to hand over too much to a stepchild just waiting to run off the premises.
Would they consider working with other powers on such a task to minimise the costs and speed development? Bohr and possibly some of his colleagues could bring a good amount of both prestige and knowledge to the project. They would need to make sure they weren't frozen out at some stage by their 'ally' but might be an option. Coupled with possibly a defensive alliance against the Soviets.