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Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items explore that possibility. Written by Alternate Historian

October 26

In 1956, on the eve of the Presidential election, the conjoined international crisis in Hungary and Egypt was deepened by the Soviet arrest of the maverick aristocrat Otto von Habsburg.

Conjoined Crisis Part 5
Habsburg Arrested
Formally the Archduke Otto of Austria, he was the last Crown Prince of Austria-Hungary from 1916 until the dissolution of the empire in 1918. He remained the Crown Prince of Hungary until the deposition of the Habsburgs in Hungary in 1921. He subsequently became the pretender to the former thrones, Head of the Imperial House of Habsburg (pictured), and Sovereign of the Order of the Golden Fleece in 1922.

In 1949, he ennobled several people, granting them Austrian noble titles, although not recognized by the Austrian republic. As he did not possess a passport and was effectively stateless, he was given a passport of the Principality of Monaco, thanks to the intervention of Charles de Gaulle in 1946.

Since the crisis started, he had been on the border making himself available to negotiate a compromise between the Soviet Union and Hungarian Government of Imre Nagy. He then entered the country with the intention of meeting Cardinal Mindszenty, the Primate of Hungary but this move had only triggered his arrest by Soviet authorities who were keen to end Habsburg's meddling. However this only precipitated a larger crisis due to his connections with the European Community. When the Western Media misreported that he was an "honest broker" seeking to defuse the crisis through arbitration, the matter entered the US political agenda and led to an unpleasant "October Surprise" for President Eisenhower. An article from the Conjoined Crisis thread.

© Today in Alternate History, 2013-. All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.