Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • this video is brought to you by Cheddar, who recently launched their own new YouTube channel.

  • Check out their video about electric fishing next after this one before defeat in the first World War, the German empire under Kaiser Wilhelm the second had a set of extremely ambitious goals.

  • Wilhelm wanted Germany to control a colonial empire around the world that would rival the British and the French ones.

  • But unfortunately, by the time of his coronation as Kaiser in 18 88 most of the world was already claimed by somebody else in Europe.

  • Pretty much all of Africa, Asia and Australia were taken.

  • So vill help began turning his attention towards the Western Hemisphere and the territories of the Americas.

  • Instead, he believed that the week Spanish colonies of Cuba and Puerto Rico would be better off as German colonies instead and wanted to take them to expand a German influence in the Caribbean and eventually into South America.

  • But there was only one tiny problem with that.

  • America also thought that Cuba and Puerto Rico would be better off as American colonies.

  • And even if they didn't, America still wasn't exactly the biggest fan of powerful European countries coming over and taking over islands right next to them.

  • Wilhelm knew that if Germany was going to take over Cuba and Puerto Rico in mental war with the United States at some point, so he did the logical thing and decided that that was just too crazy and backed down except, no, just kidding.

  • He ordered his military staff to draft up a secret invasion plan of the US instead.

  • The secret plan went through three different phases of development over a few years.

  • But this is basically how it would have played out, if it ever were to have happened.

  • Plan One called for a huge German fleet to sail across the Atlantic and engage the weaker American fleet somewhere and destroy it in a decisive naval battle.

  • The German navy would then attempt to blockade the U.

  • S East coast, while battle ships would sail up and down the coast of Virginia and other states toe bombard America's ports and shipyards.

  • This would deny America the creation of more battleships on the East Coast to challenge the German blockade, and in the meantime, it was hoped the negotiations could be started with America being in the weaker bargaining position.

  • The goal was just to get America to cave in to German demands for control of Puerto Rico or of Cuba.

  • But the plan required a massive amount of ships that Germany didn't have.

  • And then America declared war on Spain first and took over Puerto Rico and Cuba for themselves, which slightly change the dynamic.

  • The second plan, drafted afterwards, was basically the first plan, but dialed up to 11 rather than just block hating America and bombarding her ports.

  • This time around, the Germans planned an actual ground invasion of the U.

  • S East coast with the Imperial German army.

  • It called for an enormous fleet of 60 German warships accompanied by somewhere between 40 and 60 troop and cargo transport ships carrying 75,000 tons of coal and 100,000 German soldiers with a huge amount of artillery to cross the Atlantic in just 25 days to strike the United States.

  • Just like in the first plan, the German fleet was supposed to engage and destroy the American fleet in a decisive battle following That's a two pronged naval invasion with the ground troops would begin with the first pronged being focused around Boston.

  • German troops armed with artillery would be landed at Cape Cod, advanced north towards Boston and begin a siege of the city, making ample use of their artillery.

  • It was hoped that Boston eventually would collapse and the occupied by the German army.

  • At the same time, though, the much more important attack on New York City would be getting carried out to the South.

  • It would begin with an amphibious landing of German soldiers on the Sandy Hook Peninsula in New Jersey, while the surviving German warships would work to bombard and destroy the significant American coastal defenses located at Fort Hamilton in Brooklyn and four Tompkins on Staten Island that both guarded the entrance into New York's upper Bay.

  • Once these were dealt with in the upper bay was swarming with German warships.

  • Manhattan itself was intended to begin getting shelled by them.

  • The hope was that American civilians in New York and across the country would be panicked by the German gains in Boston in New York and would begin to demand peace.

  • Even Kaiser Wilhelm, the second, knew that conquering America outright was too insane and far fetched of a goal.

  • The Kaiser just hoped that shelling New York and occupying Boston would further force America into that weak bargaining position and therefore help to enforce his claims on Cuba, Puerto Rico and maybe even a base in the Pacific like Guam or the Philippines whenever the terms of the peace deal were settled upon.

  • But there were a number of glaring problems with these plans.

  • It was noted that two major things were needed for a German success toe happen the absence of a major conflict in Europe and the unpreparedness of the United States.

  • But by 1902 Both of these conditions were rapidly disappearing.

  • America appeared stronger than initially believed when she defeated Spain and took over Cuba and Puerto Rico for herself, and America was building battleships.

  • That was narrowing the advantage that the Germans initially enjoyed when the plans were first developed in 18 98.

  • Further, the British Royal Navy, which was the strongest in the world at the time, was also expanding and enable conflict between Germany and America.

  • An entire ocean away could enable on opportunity for the British to strike and destroy what remained of the German fleet.

  • The German navy never became equal to the British Navy.

  • And neither did the German navy ever even acquire the number of ships demanded for in the American invasion plans.

  • And by 1904 Britain and France had essentially signed a light alliance and czarist Russia and France had signed a firm alliance with a great war in Europe looming sometime on the horizon, Wilhelm, the second, decided to shift his and Germany's focus towards winning that war.

  • Instead of pursuing weird colonial ambitions in the Americas, the secret Imperial German plans to invade America, where permanently shelved in 1906 and remained unknown to the public and undiscovered until they were randomly stumbled upon in a West German military archive in the 19 seventies.

  • If you're still left wondering how the Kaiser's armies would have fed themselves over a 25 day transatlantic journey and then for who knows how long while on American soil you're not alone.

  • They may have resulted to fishing and maybe even used electricity to shock fish in the ocean and make for an easy catch.

  • But is that method of fishing wrong?

  • And how does it actually work?

  • To see some answers, check out this video by cheddar all about electric fishing in our oceans.

  • Cheddar makes videos about business, technology, media and news.

  • But without all the boring stuff, check out their video next by clicking the link below.

  • And if you like it, consider subscribing to their channel, which has a ton of other fun and informational content, and watch some more of their videos.

  • And as always, thank you for watching.

  • Yeah.

this video is brought to you by Cheddar, who recently launched their own new YouTube channel.

Subtitles and vocabulary

Operation of videos Adjust the video here to display the subtitles

B1 german america puerto rico rico puerto cuba

The Insane Secret German Plan to Invade America

  • 7 1
    林宜悉 posted on 2020/12/19
Video vocabulary