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The Holy Empire of the Steel Fraternity World Factbook

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The Steel Fraternity
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The Holy Empire of the Steel Fraternity World Factbook

Postby The Steel Fraternity » Mon Jul 26, 2010 2:15 pm

The Steel Fraternity World Factbook

Contents

Basic Overview
Geography
History
Government and Political Structure
The Steel Fraternity
Economy
Military
People and Population
Communications
Iron Bay
New Detroit
The Steel Paladins
Skorzenian Law Enforcement
The Skorzenian Imperial Military
The Imperial High Command


Basic Overview

Nation Official Name: The Holy Empire of the Skorzenia and the Protectorate of New Detroit
National Motto: Deus Est Machina
National Antherm: By Atlas' Labor Won

Official Language: English
Primary Ethnic Groups: White, Black, and Latino

Form of Government: Autocratic Empire
Head of State: Brother-Polymath Johnathan Keyes, Emperor of Skorzenia, Protector of New Detroit
Head of Government: The Elder Council (Brother-Militant Thomas Voerman, Brother-Scientific Howard Barnes, and Brother-Scholastic Zachary Lee)

Location: Southeast Aurora Major

Area: 3,250,000 square miles

Population: Initiated Fraternity Members: 25,000,000
Non-Members: Estimated ~225,000,000

Geography

Location: Southeastern Aurora Major

Area: 3,250,000 square miles

Coastline: 4,600 miles

Climate: Mostly tropical, temperate in the north of the country

Natural Resources: Bauxite, gold, iron ore, manganese, nickel, phosphates, platinum, tin, uranium, petroleum, hydropower, timber

Land Use: Arable Land: 6.93 %
Permanent Crops: 0.98%
Irrigated Land: 11,300 square miles
Other: 92.18%

Environmental Issues: The vast rainforests controled by the Steel Fraternity have undergone extremely heavy logging (although the forests are always replanted after harvesting), and the wildlife and ecosystems have been badly damaged by devastating wars and nuclear fallout. Detailed reports are unavailable since the Steel Fraternity is indifferent to the environment, and lack of law enforcement of the lower classes combined with frequent military raids on bordering nations make entering the country a chancy proposition for foreign environmentalists.



History

1809: Atlas Skorzeny is born to a family of German immigrants in New York.

1861: American Civil War begins. Atlas Skorzeny has made himself into an industrial titan in the North, and is now the single largest textile mill owner in the nation, and one of America's wealthiest men. He has also made substantial investments in the firearms and shipbuilding industries.

1861-1864: Skorzeny, a die-hard abolitionist, staunchly supports the Union, exponentially expanding his arms industries over the course of the war. The bitter conflict however, leaves him increasingly convinced that America has lost its way. Mercury poisoning acquired after a factory accident in 1863 causes minor brain damage, leading to delusions of grandeur and a manic obsession with building a "New, Pure, and Ever-Increasingly-Steam-Powered America, free of insidious Trojan influences."

1865: The Lincoln assassination and the spectre of a corruptly administered Reconstruction convince Skorzeny that he must start his new America as another nation entirely, and he begins laying plans. Using smugglers, mercenaries, and spies (all carefully vetted to avoid Trojan infiltration) hired with his personal fortune, Skorzeny begins supplying arms to several small, belligerent nations with promising resources and territory, leading to the eruption of a multi-faceted war south of the Cookish States.

Meanwhile, Skorzeny begins assembling an expedition to conquer these Auroran countries. Driven to paranoia by the fact that he was unable to find any Trojan saboteurs among his force of agitators, Skorzeny is careful not to mention his fear of the Horse-Loving Menace for fear of tipping off a horde of Achilles-trained assassins to his suspicions. Because of this, the people Skorzeny recruits think the steam-powered idea is kind of odd, but otherwise his plan sounds pretty good.

1869 After four years, Skorzeny has recruited an eighty-thousand man army of disgruntled Confederates, unemployed former Union soldiers, and newly freed slaves, while the bitterly devastating multi-sided war is slowly grinding to a halt. Just before peace can be reached, Skorzeny's private army invades.

Some local forces are defeated handily while others, now deprived of supply from Skorzeny, fold. The first city conquered is renamed "Iron Bay" and made the capital of the new nation of "Skorzenia."

1870-1876: Skorzeny, elected the first president of Skorzenia, begins setting up his new government, with democracy, civil rights, and freedom for all. Meanwhile, he sets about expelling the former residents of the nation by any and all means necessary, now convinced that they are all "half-Trojan curs, sent by Guy Fawkes to kill democracy." This effort is only moderately successful, but his unveiling of a new lever-action repeating rifle, one to be given as a gift to each adult male in the country, wins him a reelection in 1874.

1878: Skorzeny, running on a platform of Greek Supremacy, anti-Helenism ("the treacherous hussy!"), and steam-powered pencil sharpeners, loses his second bid for reelection.

1880: Though his journals become fragmentary here, it appears that over the next two years, Skorzeny became convinced that a cabal of Trojan vampires had been pulling humanity's strings from the time of the Roman Republic to the Civil War. He left Iron Bay in the summer of 1880 for Greece, to enlist the help of the sorcerer and monster-slayer Odysseus against the blood-drinking fiends.

1881-1916: Skorzenia adopts a policy of general isolationism, refusing to become entangled in either Auroran geopolitics or American relations beyond trading.

1916-1944: Having better established its economy and military, Skorzenia decides to aid the US when America enters the First World War. Skorzenia essentially exists as a "Little America" from here on, closely following the United States' lead in foreign affairs and politics, and allying itself with the US in all wars. The younger nation is not entirely identical, however, as the wildly diverse political backgrounds of its first settlers (or at least, the first settlers to give the last set of settlers the boot) and its genesis as an industrialist's pet project leave Skorzenia with an even stronger capitalist slant than its motherland, and a strong libertatian leaning.

1945: Immediately after the surrender of Japan, the Skorzenian fleet that had been supporting the US fleet launched an attack on Russia's Pacific fleet. The United States had already refused to join Skorzenia in a war against the Soviets, but the smaller nation hoped that by starting the war on their own, they would force the US to step in on their side.

They had miscalculated, and although the Skorzenian fleet was able to defeat the obsolete Russian navy, the subsequent land invasion proved once and for all that righteous hatred for communism did not trump Siberia's winter and the millions-strong Red Army.

1946: Following the disastrous failure of their invasion of Russia, and facing expulsion from Japan and the other Pacific islands vital to their supply lines by the US, the Skorzenians abandon their war against Russia. The defeat humiliates Skorzenia on the world stage, sours relations with the US, and costs Skorzenia the seat on the Security Council that it had been in line for.

1947: Skorzenia detonates its first atomic bomb.

1948: Skorzenia gets its seat on the Security council.

1949: With Soviet funds and supplies, the descendents of the people expelled by the Skorzenians mount an attempt to retake their homeland. The CIA takes notes.

1950: Skorzenia uses its first atomic bomb.

1951: Skorzenia loses its Security Council seat by unanimous vote, but the attempted reconquest of their nation fails.

1952: Johnathan Keyes (ROTC cadet and engineering student), Heironymous Voerman (atomic science student), and Harold Lee (anthropology student) meet at Iron Bay University. They become friends and, concerned by the possibility of atomic war or other disasters (and outright terrified by the habit of library-burning by the Reconquistas in the recent war) hit upon the idea of forming a society to preserve knowledge, science, and military power in Skorzenia in the event of disaster. Being the scions of three of the richest families in all of Skorzenia, they have no trouble starting the ball rolling, beginning their society as a college fraternity. A Steel Fraternity.

1955: Following a petition from a female atomic science student, the Steel Fraternity officially modifies its charter to guarantee the right of qualified women to join. After this they can no longer operate as a normal college fraternity, but as they had a rather different sort of organization in mind from the beginning, this causes little stir among members. The Fraternity separates itself from Greek organizations and instead becomes a secret society with a special focus on recruiting college students, scientists, soldiers, and academics.

1960: There is now a Steel Fraternity branch in every college and university in Skorzenia, and construction begins on a new fraternity headquarters in Iron Bay. With the influx of new members, many as rich and influential as the founders, there is a minor power struggle inside the Fraternity. Keyes, Voerman, and Lee secure their control of the Fraternity by creating the office of Brother-Polymath. The post is given to Keyes, because he has the broadest educational background.

1965: Skorzenia enters the Vietnam War alongside the US. Meanwhile, construction begins on Fraternity bunkers and fallout shelters across Skorzenia, intended to preserve science, knowledge, and technology in the event of atomic war.

1966: Construction on the Fraternity headquarters is completed.

1967: There is now a Fraternity member on the board of almost every major corporation in the increasingly capitalist Skorzenia. Two of the three Joint Chiefs are also now members of the militarist Fraternity, along with more than half the nation's officer corps.

1968: Privatization of Skorzenia's police and public utilities begins. The Fraternity begins to actively obtain and archive the schematics of all machines and devices built in Skorzenia. Expansion of Fraternity facilities to protect more people and include machining and production facilities.

1969: The government of Skorzenia passes a law requiring all companies to give schematics and blueprints of their products to the Fraternity for archival. Corporations wishing to maintain proprietary secrets defy the government and attempt a coup, but police and security corporations run by Fraternity members ultimately force them to comply.

1970: The Skorzenian military, frustrated by their lack of success against the Viet Cong and acting against the wishes of the US, deploy atomic weapons against North Vietnam. In retaliation, the Soviet Union obliterates South Vietnam with nuclear weapons, taking out almost the entire Skorzenian military (the last bastion of non-privatized government power) and a large part of the US military. All-out nuclear war is barely averted between the US and Russia.

Brother-Scientific Heironymous Voerman, on a business trip in America at the time, is seized by the CIA.

1971: Skorzenian corporations attempt to overthrow the government. The government, on the edge of bankruptcy following the destruction of the military, barely holds on. The economy, already imploding, worsens even further as the fighting drags on.

Voerman dies in prison under suspicious circumstances.

1972-1975: The Skorzenian Civil War, waged between the corporations and the Skorzenian military (backed by loyalist civilians), devastates the nation. Meanwhile, the Fraternity declares itself neutral and focuses on maintaining law and order as the corporate police fight the war.

Brother-Scholastic Harold Lee dies of a heart attack.

1976: The Skorzenian Republic, beset by hyperinflation, a crashing economy, and rapidly dwindling manpower, finally collapses. The corporations take over, replacing it with a laissez-faire capitalist state run entirely by private corporations.

1977-1981: Corporate tyranny, along with a surprisingly strong start toward economic recovery.

1982: Popular uprising against corporate rule, supported by Norvenia and the Cookish States, begins.

1983: The corporatist forces face defeat after defeat as the vast majority of the population turns against them.

1984: One of the corporate enclaves, about to be overrun by socialist fighters, is destroyed by a nuclear explosion. The CEO at the location, knowing he was about to be killed by the mob, had detonated his own weapons in place out of sheer spite. The other corporations, mistaking this for an attack, launch their own weapons at each other, leading to the destruction of all major Skorzenian cities and most of their own populations. The only building in Iron Bay to survive is the reinforced concrete pyramid/bunker complex that houses the Fraternity headquarters.

1985-1986: While the Fraternity remains in its bunkers waiting for at least some drop in radiation levels, a patchwork army of former corpratist soldiers and rebel fighters puts a tyrannical empire in place to take control of what remains of Skorzenia. They are immediately opposed by localized freedom fighters and warlords. The country is thrown into even deeper chaos as a multifaceted civil war ensues. Skorzenia is left in chaos as radioactivity within the nation deters outside efforts at relief or military intervention while warlords arise. Prevailing winds blow the fallout from the 1984 War east, out to sea.

1987: The Fraternity emerges from its bunkers, equipped with pre-nuclear-war military hardware, weapons, and vehicles. The warlords are smashed, and the Fraternity seizes control of the Empire, killing the old emperor and replacing him with Brother-Polymath Keyes.

1988-1993: The Fraternity rebuilds the shattered infrastructure and industry of Skorzenia, putting the equipment and information from their bunkers to good use. There are simply not enough resources available to return everyone to their pre-war standard of living, however, so a new social hierarchy arises, with the Fraternity's members forming the wealthy and educated elite, controlling industry, scientific progress, and technology in the new nation, and the uneducated non-members living in squalor and malnutrition, serving as wage-slaves in the fields and factories and conscripted cannon fodder in the new army.

1994-1996: Supported by the Norvenia and the Cookish States, the same nations that had attempted the First Reconquista try again. The Second Reconquista takes vast swaths of territory, but after several grueling campaigns and millions of deaths, the Fraternity's high-tech elites, massed cannon fodder, and heavy armor turn the tide.

The Fraternity does not settle for merely turning back the Second Reconquista, but ultimately launces a counter-invasion, conquering new territory and increasing its size half again. The new land is made into the province of New Detroit. This also marks the beginning of the Fraternity's tactic of invading its neighboring nations to round up children to brainwash and add to its masses of underclass factory workers and soldiers.

1997: Fallout is released by Interplay.

1998: The Fraternity introduces powered armor for its elite Steel Paladins. Interplay threatens lawsuit over intellectual property. Fraternity threatens countersuit over Fallout's "Brotherhood of Steel." The whole matter is dropped.

1999: Brother-Polymath Keyes' heart fails, and he is placed inside a permanent powered armor/life support suit, retreating to his laboratory inside the bunkers underneath the Fraternity headquarters. From now on he devotes himself to medical research in order to unlock immortality for the Fraternity, making only occassional public appearances and infrequent proclamations. The Elder Council takes over the day-to-day running of the Empire.

2001-2009: Although still considered an international pariah, and maintaining a vaguely bellicose attitude toward most of the region, Skorzenia's recovering industrial base begins supplying low-priced, high-quality manufactured goods which are eagerly snapped up by most Auroran countries to one degree or another. The Empire undergoes an economic boom as it begins supplying industrial goods to its neighbors. Soon, the Fraternity's economy is once again very strong, and its industrial power is now near-unrivaled.

2010: The Steel Fraternity begins taking a more active roll in international relations, marking the beginning of a new era in its history.

Government and Political Structure

Country Official Name: The Holy Empire of Skorzenia and Protectorate of New Detroit

Common Names: The Steel Fraternity, the Holy Empire of the Steel Fraternity.

Government Type: Absolute Monarchy (Run by Steel Fraternity)

Capital City: Iron Bay

Administrative Divisions: Countries (Skorzenia and New Detroit), States

Founded: January 12, 1870

Cliff's Notes Version: The official government is an empire ruled by an absolute monarch, but the government is controlled by the Steel Fraternity and every government official is a Fraternity member. The Fraternity selects the Emperor, and is itself democratically run by its members. The non-members, who make up the vast majority of the population, are kept uneducated, have no rights, live in absolute squallor, and get basically worked to death by Fraternity-run companies and the Empire.

For all practical intents and purposes, the Steel Fraternity has two governments. First, there is the Empire of Skorzenia, which is the official and legal government of the country. The Empire has legal authority over all the people inside the country, technically controls the Skorzenian Army, and maintains relations with foreign powers.

The head and absolute ruler of the Empire is the Brother-Polymath of the Fraternity, currently Johnathan Keyes. Below the Emperor are the Supreme Commander of the military (Brother-Militant Thomas Voerman), the head of the Diplomatic corps (Brother-Scholastic Zachary Lee), Prime Minister of Skorzenia (Brother-Scientific Howard Barnes), and the President of New Detroit (Brother-Scholar Nicholas Carson).

The duties of the head of the Diplomatic Corps and Supreme Commander are mostly self-evident. The Supreme Commander runs the military, while the head of the Diplomatic Corps is in charge of foreign relations. The only unusual part of the setup is that the head of the Diplomatic Corps also serves as Trade Minister. This had been a seperate post under the old Empire, but the two were consolidated when the Fraternity took power in order to keep all the power for the heads of the government within the Elder Council. This didn't work perfectly, as after the conquest of New Detroit they had to place a fourth man in the post of President, choosing one of the Old Guard of Fraternity members from the 60's.

The Prime Minister is charged of maintaining Skorzenia for the Emperor, overseeing the national police, tax collectors, transportation administration, education administration (quite possibly the single most prestigious post at that level of government, given the Fraternity's focus on knowledge and technology), industrial administration (the other candidate for most prestigious post, due to Skorzenia's long-term obsession with industrial and mechanical power), the judiciary, and all the other minutiae of running a country.

Beneath the Prime Minister are the Governors, who each run their states about the same way as their equivalents in the US (a relic of Skorzenia's origins) with the exception that they are appointed by the Prime Minister and in turn appoint their own subordinates rather than running for election.

Each level of Imperial officials are appointed by the level above (i.e., Emperor appoints Prime Minister, who appoints governor, who appoints State Police chief) with the exceptions of the President of New Detroit, Supreme Commander and the Emperor. The Supreme Commander is a former member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the military who rose to his rank normally, and then is selected by his peers to serve as Supreme Commander. The Emperor is the Brother-Polymath of the Fraternity. The President of New Detroit is elected every four years (with no term limits; Carson was the first President, and is on his fifth consecutive term), and unlike the Empire, has most government officials elected.

This is where the difference between the Fraternity and the Government becomes important; while the Emperor controls the government and the government controls the Fraternity, it is the Fraternity which chooses the Brother-Polymath/Emperor, who is in turn answerable to the Fraternity. So, while the government is an absolute monarchy, it is run by a democratic secret society of academics and soldiers.

All people legally have the right to trial by jury, legal protection, etc., just as in the US, except there are a variety of fees and taxes attached to everything that can be easily payed by Fraternity members, but are beyond the reach of the non-member proles. This guarantees that Fraternity members have full rights, but the proles can be kept uneducated and powerless while they are exploited as dirt-cheap labor by the government and businesses, as well as conscripted cannon fodder by the military.

Education, law enforcement, and public utilites are provided practically for free by the governmnet (but once again with fees that are negligible to Fraternity members and far beyond the reach of proles). Otherwise, everything is privately run, but not necessarilly on a for-profit basis. Hospitals, for instance, are mostly philanthropic organizations supported by private individuals and corporations.

The nation remains aggressively capitalist, but the corporations are kept utterly subordinate to the government. Not only are all business owners, managers, and skilled laborers Fraternity members, but they are legally obligated provide all proprietary information for storage and preservation in Fraternity bunkers, and their facilities can be comandeered for military or government use at any time.

To sum up: the government's power is absolute, it is run by the Steel Fraternity, the Fraternity is run by its members, and ensures rights and education for them.

The Steel Fraternity

The Fraternity completely controls the government, and fills every single government post with its own members. The Fraternity also controls the Brothers-Militant, which includes the officer corps of the Army and Navy, the Army's armored corps, the elite special forces unit VANGUARD, the entirety of the Air Force, and the Steel Paladins.

The Fraternity is legally obligated to obey the laws of the Empire along with everyone else, but also has its own separate sets of rules and laws, that apply to only to Fraternity members and exist outside the government purview.

Most of the Fraternity is not involved with running the government and military, but instead focused on scientific research, engineering, education (not only do the children of Fraternity members receive advanced education, but all members are constantly taking courses to advance their knowledge of their own field of specialty and learn about other fields, and new inductees drawn from those few who advance from the lower classes through the military or industry also receive education), running the nation's industry, or practicing medicine.

The most basic organizational unit of the Fraternity is the local branch, which serves one college, military installation, town, county (in the case of rural areas), or neighborhood (in the case of large cities). Each branch includes fifty to a few thousand members, and is headed by a Magos who oversees meetings and motions. Every member has a vote and can introduce a motion and vote on motions, which can be for anything from a modification to the local elementary curriculum to a bill for the consideration of the whole Fraternity.

Magos also attend bi-annual meetings of regional Convocations, which oversee their respective geographical areas that function much the same as a chapter. Convocations also elect a High Magos to represent their region in the annual meeting of the Fraternity's National Control Board. These make the final decision on nationwide motions, set national rules for the Fraternity, and elect a new Elder to the Elder Council whenever one dies.

An Elder can be removed from his post if a High Magos introduce a motion of No Confidence to the National Control Board, which is then passed by a supermajority of the NCB, and finally a simple majority in a vote by all Fraternity members. The Brother-Polymath (or Sister-Polymath, should one be elected) can be removed by a similar process, except it ultimately requires a supermajority of all members.

New members enter the Fraternity by one of four ways:

1) Children born to existing members enter as Childer as soon as they begin elementary school. When they enter college or (the much lower-status) vocational school, they become Noviciates. After earning a bachelors-level degree, they are Acolytes, and after a doctorate, Adepts. Those who go on to teach others (Which is most; for Fraternity members retirement almost universally means becoming a teacher) are Maesters.

2) Lower-class soldiers or sailors who distinguish themselves through military service may earn induction as Military Engineers, receiving a remedial basic education followed by vocational training to become Noviciates in the Fraternity. After that, any children they have will enter as Childer, and they themselves may advance normally. Relatively few of them do advance however, due to problems adjusting to Fraternal society and fitting in with Fraternity-born students.

3) Soldiers in the Army may alternatively earn entrance into VANGUARD, going through the same remedial basic education and advanced military science education before entering the elite unit as Fraternity Acolytes. From there they may enter the officer corps or, in the case of the extremely ambitious, determined, and capable soldiers, earn a Combat Technologies doctorate and enter the Steel Paladins.

4) Uneducated, unskilled industrial workers may, on their own time, take an Intelligence Aptitude test from their Fraternity managers (the test, of course, is stacked heavily against them) to earn provisional Childer status, go through a remedial basic education, and then take vocational training to enter as full Noviciates. This is the rarest of all avenues into the Fraternity, and is only open at all to ensure that the Fraternity can maintain a monopoly on skilled labor and education.

The spiritual philosophy followed by most members of the Fraternity is the bizarre outgrowth of a strong Protestant tradition and an equally strong obsession with science and technology.

In the Sixties and early Seventies, the Scientific Church of Christ arose within the ranks of the Fraternity, and it has grown over the intervening years among members as a sort of organization-within-the-oranization. It is basically a relatively moderate Protestant Christian denomination, but with a strong philosophical focus on scientific understanding as a way to become closer to God, and a conflation between Christ as a spiritual savior and technological advancement as a path of earthly salvation.

The Scientific Church of Christ has remained popular among members of the Steel Fraternity to this day, and is now the most common religious group among them, alongside other Christian denominations.

The SCC is popular enough that the head of the church was included in the coronation of Brother-Polymath Keyes as the Emperor of Skorzenia. Hence the "Holy Empire."



Economy

The Steel Fraternity has a capitalist economy regulated in the areas of product safety, food safety, drug safety, and work conditions (though that last can only be enforced after an employee files a complaint with the labor department and pays a small fee, so only Fraternity Members are protected). The economy is based primarily around industrial production. A large portion of the gross domestic product comes from the export of industrial goods, and while there is no ban on importing industrial goods, doing so or buying them is basically social and career suicide. Therefore, all industrial products in the Steel Fraternity are domestically produced.

Average Yearly Income: Fraternity Member: 500,000 USD
Non member: Unknown; Estimated 80 USD

Population Below Poverty Line: Unknown; Estimated >90% (More than 225,000,000)

Unemployment Rate: Unkown; Estimated approximately 5-10%

National Government Budget: 900 billion USD

Industry: Automobiles, computers, aircraft, seacraft, electronics, consumer goods, farming machinery, construction equipment, furniture, concrete, paper, petroleum refineries, et cetera.

Electricity Production: Total production classified. Production must meet domestic need however, since nations sharing land borders are all hostile.

Oil Production: Total classified. No exports. Total does not meet domestic need. Difference made up by ethanol use.

Agricultural Products: Almost exlusively corn for ethanol production and sale to proles.

Exports: Industrial good to The rest of Aurora Major, Aurora Minor, and Afrosia.

Imports: Food from the Aurora Major and Afrosia. Raw materials from Aurora Major and Afrosia.

Currency: Ingot

Military

Branches: The Imperial Army, the Imperial Navy, the Imperial Air Force, the Steel Paladins

Manpower: Imperial Army: 2,500,000
Imperial Navy: 150,000
Imperial Air Force: 250,000
Steel Paladins: 10,000

Available Manpower: 60,000,000 Males
60,000,000 Females

Percentage of Total Population: Approximately 1.5%

The military of the Steel Fraternity, were it to be evaluated by a twelve-year-old, would be declared the very epitome of martial prowess, and undefeatable by any foe. That is to say, the Steel Fraternity's military is expensive, impractical, and obsessed with high technology and big warmachines.

The name "the Steel Fraternity" was not chosen at random. Owing to Skorzenia's roots as an industrialist's creation and the Fraternity's obsession with technology, the Imperial military has many of the largest tanks, ships, and aircraft in service in the world, along with more heavy weapons than they know what to do with.

The Imperial Army

Composed primarily of prole conscripts, with cheap and shoddy uniforms and equipment, armed with domestically-produced clones of the AK-47 and S&W Model 19. They are mainly deployed against the enemy in human-wave style attacks.

Commanded by Fraternity officers equipped with high-quality full body armor, armed with the MAR-17 assault rifle chambered for 7.62x51 mm NATO. They usually move along behind the main lines, shooting any conscripts who attempt to retreat.

NCOs are drawn from veteran conscripts, equipped with light body armor, and armed with the heavy weapons (squad automatic weapons, grenade launchers, etc.) of the Imperial Army. Motivated by the possibility of earning Fraternity membership, they aid the officers in maintaining discipline and command squads.

The backbone of the Imperial Army, however, is its Armored Corps. Composed entirely of Fraternity members, they make use of various heavy and super-heavy tanks to support the infantry and obliterate enemy positions.

The crown jewel of the Armored Corps is the Landcruiser P 2000 "Behemoth" super-heavy tank. The latest permutation of the Landcruiser tank series, it has its roots in the German Landkreuzer P 1500 Monster. Following World War II, as the United States and the Soviet Union snatched up Nazi rocket engineers and nuclear scientists, Skorzenia got its hands on various weapons designers of other stripes, including those who had worked on Germany's prototype super-heavy tanks, such as the Monster and the P 1000 Ratte.

Even the Nazis, with their penchant for deploying weapons and vehicles that verged on mad science, considered these prototypes too impractical for use. The Ratte and the Monster could never fit on city streets, would collapse any bridge they tried to cross, and were far too expensive to operate. Even in the darkest days of WWII, as the defeat of Nazi Germany loomed, they were never desperate enough to try using them.

The Skorzenian military, following the Second World War and the inglorious end of the Russo-Skorzenian War, were faced with what looked to be the beginning of a new era of peace. Even those few who feared war with Communist Russia at that point recognized that such a conflict would be fought with planes and atom bombs. The era of the tank, and of conventional warfare in general, was ending.

The Army tweaked the designs and rushed their own version of the P 1500 into production anyway. Why? Because it was the biggest tank in the world.

That tradition has continued, and the tanks have only grown larger, culminating in the modern P 2000, with its total weight of two thousand tons dual 900 mm main guns, four 150 mm cannon turrets, and twenty 15 mm auto cannons. It is too large to be loaded on any ship, cannot pass mountain ranges, and can only be deployed in nations overseas after being completely dissassembled and shipped over on a heavy freighter. There are five hundred of them currently in use, with two hundred more expected to come on-line within the next decade.

And the Behemoth is only the largest of the Fraternity's tanks. The others in use range in size from the seventy-ton BT-67 Harry Lee (modeled after the American Abrams) to the five-hundred-ton BT-500 Soldier Ant (with a 300 mm main gun capable of firing small atomic warheads).

Between the time large-scale tank production was resumed in Skorzenia after the nuclear war in 1990 and the end of the Second Reconquista in 1996, the Armored Corps' petroleum consumption threw the national economy into crisis. In response, all tanks in service were modified to accept ethanol fuel.

Details on the special forces unit VANGUARD are classified. However, VANGUARD is responsible for security at the Skorzenian embassy in the US (currently the only Fraternity embassy), and those seen on guard duty are equipped with the MAR-17 and body armor used by Army officers, along with Skorzenia Arms 1911-type pistols.

It is now estimated that 500,000 proles starve to death every year because of the amount of corn converted to ethanol for Army use.

The Imperial Navy

While the Imperial navy includes two dozen destroyers and sixteen nuclear submarines, not to mention countless cutters for coastal defence, its centerpiece is the six Poseidon-class battle carriers. 2,500 feet long and displacing over 200,000 tons, they are the largest warships currently afloat.

Each Poseidon-class ship is a nuclear powered hybrid between a battleship and a supercarrier. The flight deck and runway are completely internal, with only one opening on the bow of the ship for aircraft to enter and leave. The upper deck is home to eight 20-inch guns, ten 12-inch guns, thirty five 5-inch guns, and one hundred fifty .50-caliber anti-aircraft guns, as well as two hundred Broadside cruise missile launchers.

The six Poseidon-class ships in service are: the Poseidon itself, the original prototype of the class, the Deus Ex Bellum, the Leviathan, the Minnow, the Machina Mortem, and the Pacificatrix.

Each carries seventy Valkyrie fighter-bombers, and up to twenty five Thunderbird tilt-rotor aircraft.

The Imperial navy makes limited use of conscripted prole sailors, but mostly relies on Fraternity members for technical maintenance and their officer corps. All aircraft pilots and mechanics are Fraternity members.

It is estimated that 200,000 proles starve to death every year because of the Navy's ethanol consumption.

Imperial Air Force

The Imperial Air Force is, after the Army's Armored Corps, the place where the Skorzenian obsession with horsepower and firepower comes to the fore. Requiring educated and skilled personnel, it is composed entirely of Fraternity members.

The Imperial Air Force's primary fighter, the MR-12 Valkyrie, has the worst fuel efficiency and shortest operational range of any fighter currently in use in the world, and is also the most expensive. On the other hand, it is also the fastest and most heavily armed.

The primary bomber of the Imperial air force, the HA-3 Mjolnir, is likewise the most expensive and inefficient bomber in use. It does, however, have a much longer operational range, as it was designed to be capable of bombing China, Vietnam, North Korea, and any other Communist nation in the world. It also has the heaviest payload of any bomber in service.

The Steel Fraternity's atomic ICBM program is simultaneously one of the best- and worst-kept secrets in the world. One of the best-kept because operational security and secrecy is incredibly tight, with absolutely no information leaked, and the addition of nuclear silos to Fraternity bunkers was kept completely incognito. One of the worst-kept because when the Empire signed a nuclear non-proliferation treaty while repairing relations with the US in 2001, exactly no-one in the world believed them.

It is estimated that 300,000 proles starve to death every year because of the Air Force's ethanol consumption.

The Steel Paladins

If the Behemoth is the crown jewel of the Armored Corps, the Steel Paladins are the crown jewel of the whole military.

Where the rest of the military is one long love song to gasoline, artillery, and heavy vehicles, the Steel Paladins are a love song to high technology and advanced weaponry.

Each and every Paladin is a Fraternity Adept with at least two doctorates in hard science and engineering. Members do not volunteer, but are instead observed from afar, selected by a board of current Paladin commanders, and offered a chance to compete for entrance. Candidates are either chosen from those who have just completed their second qualifying doctorate or from veterans of VANGUARD. They are then either put through VANGUARD training or a doctorate program (depending on which they lack) before being put through the Sieve.

The Sieve is a fifty-mile course through the jungle and mountain wilderness of backwater Skorzenia which candidates must navigate with only a knife, map, and compass, in under seventy-two hours. Along the way they are opposed by Army conscripts who have been told to guard various pillboxes scattered along the route.

The Paladin candidate must enter each pillbox and retrieve a trinket inside a locker within. They must also bring at least a dozen conscripts' scalps to the end of the route.

After all this, candidates' times will be compared, and those who completed the course the most quickly is allowed to join the elite unit.

From here, the trainees are put through the actual Paladin training, focused on the specialized tactics necessary for fighting in power armor and independent operation behind enemy lines. Following training, each man or woman is inducted and implanted with their neural link, a data port that connects directly to the brain for interface with their armor. Finally, the newly minted Paladins are allowed to build their armor. This is why doctorates are required; each Paladin builds his own set of powered armor. Each suit must fit a certain set of specifications, but there is a high degree of customization.

Every suit must be capable of withstanding direct hits from anything smaller than an anti-tank round, be independently powered, and include jumpjets that allow the Paladin to make up to five-hundred yard "hops." Actual flight is impossible, since the suits are too heavy for prolonged flying.

Each suit is also a fully-sealed environment suit capable of resisting radiation and poison gas, and every helmet includes an informational uplink that downloads communications and tactical information to a Paladin's neural link.

Many Paladins implant blades (fixed or powered) in their armor, and some even put lasers on their suits, but the primary weaponry of the Steel Paladins comes in the form of standardized weaponry separate from their armor. This ranges from personal miniguns to tactical atomic missile launchers (very rare and only used for bunker-busting), but the standard load-out for a Paladin is as follows:

1) .75 caliber minigun with 20,000 round ammo drum underslung (can only be lifted by armored Paladin).
2) 20-round automatic sidearm chambered for .700 Nitro Express rounds, ten extra magazines.
3) 15-round automatic 40 mm grenade launcher, three extra magazines.
4) Five shaped C-4 charges for demolition and anti-vehicle use.

The Paladins are usually deployed to the field in Thunderbird tiltrotor aircraft (essentially Ospreys the size of Chinooks). They stack up in the aircraft's bay like paratroopers, then jump out and use their jump jets to control descent and landing. They are usually used to surgically strike vital targets ahead of the main army's advance, or to slow advancing enemy forces. Between one and ten Paladins might be assigned to hit any one target, depending on its defenses.

The Steel Paladins are the single most advanced, heavily armed, ungodly expensive, and utterly impractical special forces unit in the world.

Their powered armor is so heavy that a combat-ready Paladin cannot enter a normal building without crashing through the floor, they cannot operate in swampy environments at all as they would immediately sink into the mire, and rainy or wet conditions seriously hinder them as they are easily mired in mud.

Their tactics are totally reliant on mobility and use of jumpjets, as their armor is heavy enough to shrug off small-arms fire, but a single solid hit with an anti-armor weapon will reduce a Paladin to mush. If their jumpjets are damaged, they are left very slow-moving on the ground and a relatively easy target (though still much harder to hit than a tank, so there's something). Operating in heavily forested areas restricts them entirely to moving on foot as they cannot jumpjet through close trees, so they must advance slowly and carefully right alongside the cannon fodder.

Further, the horrendous expense of Paladins makes them essentially not worth the effort. They may represent the smartest and most physically capable members of the entire Fraternity, but educating, training, equipping, and deploying a single Paladin costs as much as building a Behemoth tank or fielding an entire brigade of conscripts.

And between their monumental cost and extreme selectiveness, there are very few Paladins to go around; only ten thousand in the entire military. The long time required for education and training further means that new Paladins can only be inducted at an extremely slow pace. Should they need to expand their ranks or make up for heavy attrition, it might take decades.

People and Population

Steel Fraternity Members: 18,000,000
Non-Members: Unkown; Estimated approximately 180 million

Median Age: Fraternity: 35
Non-Fraternity: 25

Net Migration Rate: Fraternity: -0.03%
Non-Fraternity: Unknown. Many try to flee, but the Fraternity makes great efforts to prevent that, and periodically
raids neighboring nation for children.

Life Expectancy at Birth: Fraternity: 95.7 years
Non-Fraternity: Unknown, Estimated 45 years

Ethnic Groups: Fraternity: White: 45%
Latino (generally thought of as white within the Fraternity): 30%
Black: 20%
Asian: 5%

Non-Fraternity: Unknown, Estimated Approximately 50% Latino, 50% White

Religions: Fraternity: The Scientific Church of Christ (45%)
Other Protestant Denominations (10%)
Catholic (5%)
Atheist (30%)
Other/Undecided (10%)

Non-Fraternity: Unknown, Estimated Nominal Catholic (90%), but the Fraternity does not allow entrance by clergy.

Languages: Fraternity: English
Non-Fraternity: Portuguese/Spanish/English pidgin

Adult Literacy: Fraternity: 100%
Non-Fraternity: Unknown, Estimated <5%

Communications

Number of Televisions: 20 million

Number of radios: 25 million

Number of Telephones: 30 million

Number of Cell Phones: 27 million

Internet Users: 18 million
Last edited by The Steel Fraternity on Sun Jun 02, 2013 12:49 pm, edited 22 times in total.

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Iron Bay

Postby The Steel Fraternity » Tue Jul 27, 2010 11:36 pm

Iron Bay

Population

Fraternity Members: 1.5 million

Non-Fraternity: Unknown, estimated~15 million

Geography

Iron Bay, a port city situated on the eastern coastline of Skorzenia, is the capital and largest city of the Empire, and home of the Headquarters of the Steel Fraternity. Just outside the city lies Fort Mariposa, the headquarters of the Imperial Army, Steel Paladins, and Imperial Air Force, while the headquarters of the Imperial Navy and primary military shipyards are in the Bay itself.

Like all major Skorzenian cities, Iron Bay consists of a Fraternity Enclave surrounded by a business sector, surrounded in turn by an industrial sector, surrounded by prole slums.

The Fraternity Enclave

When the Soviets made a nuclear strike on Iron Bay during the 1984 War, the only building left standing was the massive, steel-reinforced concrete pyramid that houses the Steel Fraternity's headquarters. Immediately following the war, when Skorzenia was conquered by the warlord who would proclaim himself its emperor, he built his palace around that monolithic landmark.

When the Fraternity emerged in 1987 to reclaim the nation and take over the empire, they adopted the Imperial Palace as their capital. Then, when they began to rebuild Iron Bay, they expelled all non-members from the ruins of downtown surrounding the palace, surrounded the area with fifty-foot tall, reinforced concrete walls, and built the Fraternity Enclave.

This area of the city is completely off-limits to proles, on pain of death. It houses the homes of all Fraternity members in the city, along with the nuclear power plant of the city and the central control computers of all other utilities, along with the city's police headquarters. The buildings are all naked concrete, steel, and glass, kept gleaming with automated machinery and primitive robots. The Imperial Palace stands in sharp contrast to the gleaming modernity around it, being made of wood and stone, with white columns and wide porches, looking for all the world like a gigantic plantation house built around a blast-scarred and scorched concrete pyramid.

There are lush, verdant parks scattered all over, and the streets are lined with trees. There are countless small shops and restaurants catering to everyone from schoolchildren of low-level Fraternity families to the wealthiest people in all Skorzenia. The Iron Bay Library is here, the single largest public library in the world, containing hard copies of over three hundred million books and other items, and electronic copies of countless more.

The Business Sector

Home to the banks (though most have their central vaults in the Enclave), office buildings, large stores (car dealerships, supermarkets, large retail stores, etc.) and Iron Bay University (the largest and most acclaimed university in Skorzenia). Proles are employed for menial labor, street cleaning, and the like, and are so allowed in the Business sector during their shifts.

Except for the massive concrete wall separating it from the Fraternity Enclave and the shorter, yet still quite tall, wall separating it from the Industrial Sector, it looks like any other large, modern city in the world.

The Industrial Sector

If an environmentalist were to spend a week in the Industrial Sector, there would be one of three possible outcomes:

1) They would be reduced to a crying, whimpering wreck.

2) They would scream themselves to death from sheer terror.

3) They would drop dead from inhaling the horrendous cocktail of toxins in the air.

The whole area is nothing more than a gigantic, jumbled mass of towering, sprawling, gigantic factories. The only structures that tower above the smoke stacks are the huge ionizing towers that attract and accumulate the various types of viscous chemical gunk spewed into the air. These giant metal towers accumulate waste at a tremendous rate, and must be hourly "flushed" (rinsed off with integrated water sprayers), with the resulting waste water drained out into the surrounding prole slums.

Technically, only Proles who work in the factories are allowed into this area, but no one bothers to enforce the law as only the most suicidal would enter with unless they absolutely had to. All Fraternity members who enter this area do so in fully-sealed environment suits with independent air supplies. All the proles who enter this area do so with vastly shortened life expectancies.

The only way to navigate the Industrial Sector is through tight, cramped alleyways between adjacent factories, through tunnel-like corridors that snake their way through the tangled mass of iron girders and electrical wires, or through actual tunnels scraped out beneath the foundations of the mighty factories.

The Industrial sector is surrounded by a ten-foot chainlink fence that separates it from the surrounding Prole Slums. Since the railways and roads that connect the inner parts of the city to the outside world go underground to large tunnels beneath the Industrial sector before emerging into air again in the Business Sector, the only ways in or out through the fence are tiny entrances for prole workers and gigantic gates for newly-built Behemoth and Soldier Ant tanks to exit (all other tanks are small enough to be loaded onto freight trains in underground depots beneath the Industrial Sector, along with all other products).

The Prole Slums

Technically outside city limits, the slums receive no power, running water, or other utilities, and the only law is that enforced by prole vigilanties and street gangs armed with crude machetes (the Fraternity takes great pains to prevent them from gaining actual weapons).

The proles have no professionally built buildings. Instead they squat in the most-intact ruins of those buildings destroyed by the Soviet nuclear strikes, and what shanties they can cobble together in the streets and on top of the ruins. The slums are horribly overcrowded, as the final stage of the Imperial Army's training program is to march the new cannon fodder around the city, killing every prole and demolishing every unauthorized building outside a certain distance from the Industrial Sector (in order to utterly break the conscripts by forcing them to butcher their own people and summarily executing any who refuse to do so). Since the proles naturally learn to not build new dwellings outside the city, and make sure not to exit the slums on the regularly scheduled training days, the Army has to constrict that circumference a few yards every time.

Some have raised the question of what they will do when there is simply not enough room left for the proles necessary for labor. Thus far they have been able to continue packing in tighter, so it hasn't been a problem. The Army and city planners will cross that bridge when they come to it.

Due to the overcrowding and lack of emergency services, fires periodically rage through the slums. When this occurs, the Imperial Air Force uses bombers with special retardant delivery equipment to put them out. This does nothing to save proles inside buildings already burning (in fact, the fire retardant used contains both toxic and carcinogenic chemicals, so those in the buildings are almost certain to die within hours or days even if they escape, and those in a broad area all around have vastly increased cancer rates), but it keeps the fire from spreading enough to seriously damage the workforce.

The crowding also makes it nearly impossible to travel through the slums. The major travel arteries into the city go underground outside the slums, and the old streets from before the war are covered with shanties. The only time there is any truly clear path is just after a new tank exits the Industrial Sector. They simply drive over any buildings in their way or people too slow to move, as they are more than large enough to crush any buildings in their way as they either exit the city for other bases in Skorzenia or head to the Bay to be dissassembled and loaded onto waiting ships for deployment or sale overseas.

In years past, a popular passtime for Fraternity teenagers and youths from the inner city was to pile in cars (usually the very large, unnecessarilly powerful, horribly fuel-inefficient sedans favored by pretty much all Skorzenians) and joyride through the slums, running down and shooting the proles they encountered. This has come to a halt in recent years, partly because the increasingly tight-packed shanties made it impossible to drive through the slums, and partly because of an incident that occured in 2000. A car carrying five joyriding teens crashed in the heart of the slums, and all of them were killed by vengeful proles (the police, of course, retaliated by executing a thousand proles for every killed teen).

The Bay

Connected to the Industrial Sector and the rest of Iron Bay by dedicated underground roads and subways, the Bay is the single largest port in all of Skorzenia. Home to the Imperial Naval headquarters and Naval Academy.Also here are the central shipyards for both commercial and military construction (capable of building a Poseidon-class battle carrier in a week), making the Bay one of the single most vital areas to Skorzenia's economy and military infrastructure in and of itself before one even considers that over half of the country's imported and exported goods go through the Bay.
Last edited by The Steel Fraternity on Mon May 06, 2013 5:58 pm, edited 5 times in total.

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New Detroit

Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun Dec 05, 2010 12:18 am

New Detroit

Overview:

Nation Official Name: The Imperial Skorzenian Protectorate of New Detroit
National Motto: Sic Semper Tyrannis
National Anthem: Armored Lightning, Iron Thunder

Official Language: English
Primary Ethnic Groups: Black, White, Latino

Form of Government: Federal Presidential Constitutional Republic
Head of State: Brother-Polymath Johnathan Keyes, Emperor of Skorzenia, Protector of New Detroit
Head of Government: Brother-Scholar Nicholas Carson, President of New Detroit

Location: South Aurora Major

Area: 1,526,000 square miles

Fraternity Population: 3.75 million
Non-Fraternity Population (Proles): None
Last edited by The Steel Fraternity on Mon May 06, 2013 5:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun Dec 05, 2010 12:38 am

Geography

Location: Western South America (More or less covering the area formerly composed of Paraga, Bolviana, Peruv, Colomb, and Vuezenela)

Area: Roughly 1,526,000 square miles

Coastline: Roughly 5,000 miles

Climate: Widely varied, from deserts to rainforest to high-altitude.

Natural Resources: Copper, silver, gold, petroleum, timber, fish, iron ore, coal, phosphate, potash, hydropower, natural gas, manganese, limestone, emeralds, nickel, bauxite, diamonds, tin, zinc. tungsten, antimony, and lead.

Land Use: No data. Unlike Skorzenia proper, where most agricultural land is controlled by large companies or organized into cooperatives, and therefore easy to track the use of, most agriculture in New Detroit is conducted by small, independent operations. Most of these operations also focus on livestock rather than crops, so grazing land is more important than irrigated or planted land.

Environmental Issues: New Detroit, not having been subjected to nuclear strikes during the 1984 War, and having only been under Fraternity control since 1996, has a more intact environment than Skorzenia proper. Nonetheless, there are no environmental protection laws in force, and unrestricted mining and logging have been conducted since the nation's founding. There is also less re-planting of forests than in Skorzenia, as cleared land is viewed by the local populace (and owners) to be more valuable as grazing land than as rainforest.
Last edited by The Steel Fraternity on Tue May 07, 2013 7:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun Dec 05, 2010 1:45 am

History

1949: Skorzenia's neighbors to the west, Bolviana, Peruv, Colomb, and Vuezenela provide military support to an attempt by the descendants of those expelled during the formation of Skorzenia to re-invade their ancestral homeland.

After this alliance makes steady gains against the Skorzenians for several months, Paraga joins the First Reconquista.

1950: Lita, La Paz, and Botoga (the capitals of the Reconquista nations) are destroyed by Skorzenian atomic bombs. The First Reconquista ends with all belligerents agreeing to return to status quo antebellum, with the exception those private filibusterers who spearheaded the effort to reconquer the land their forebears came from. These private fighters were turned over to Skorzenia by their erstwhile supporters, tried as unlawful combatants, and executed to a man.

1976: Following the disastrous, nuclear end of the Vietnam War, caused by Skorzenia's collective fetish for atomic bombs and killing Communists, a combination of economic crisis and a corporate coup d'etat topples the Skorzenian government, replacing it with a lasseiz-faire Capitalist state. The now fully-privatized government is run entirely by corporations.

1977-1981: Corporate tyranny. Desperate Skorzenians attempt to flee the nation. Some get into neighboring nations, where they are reduced to second-class citizens utilized entirely for menial labor, but most are turned away.

1982: In Skorzenia, a popular uprising against the Corporatists begins, and the stream of refugees into neighboring nations becomes a deluge. Because of the sheer numbers of refugees, Skorzenia's neighbors cannot hope to stem the tide. They respond by oppressing the refugees even more than before, herding new arrivals into cramped, prison-like camps where disease and malnutrition run rampant.

1983: As the civil war in Skorzenia intensifies, still more refugees flow across borders, now including even some Fraternity members who foresee a coming disaster and know that the Fraternity does not have enough bunkers to house all its members.

The governments receiving the refugees from their most hated enemy begin, somewhat clandestinely, trying to exterminate the Skorzenian refugees. In response, organized by Brothers-Military among them, the refugees begin a campaign of guerrilla warfare against their host nations.

1984: The corporations now ruling Skorzenia are locked in internercine fighting and simultaneously facing a popular uprising. After one corporate enclave detonates its own nuclear weapons rather than be overrun by socialists, the others mistook the event for an atomic attack. In response, they launch a series of counter-attacks against each other that obliterate all of Skorzenia's major cities. There is one last wave of refugees from the disintegrating country, followed by thick nuclear fallout. Millions die, refugee and native alike, while the previously smouldering revolt by Skorzenian ex-pats flares into open warfare in the streets, as those refugees who had been around long enough to integrate as low-class workers join in the uprising.

1985-1993: As the ruins of Skorzenia begin to reorganize themselves, going from local warlords, to being unified under a brutal Emperor, to being re-conquered by the Fraternity as it emerges from its bunkers, the uprisings across the neighboring nations are slowly ground down. Casualties are horrendous on both sides, with the refugees doing a disproportionate amount of damage thanks to guidance from the Fraternity members among them, but government forces eventually wear them down through simple attrition.

Finally, as the Skorzenian Empire begins to gain strength and power under the Fraternity, its ex-patriates' revolts have been pushed back to the jungles and hinterlands, fitfully raiding and sabotoging the locals and government, but losing men and resolve with every passing month.

1994: Norvenia and the Cookish States, concerned by the prospect of an economically and militarily powerful Skorzenia rising again, provide funds and materiel to another effort by Paraga, Peruv, Bolviana, Vuezenela, and Colomb to conquer Skorzenia. The Second Reconquista is launched to great initial success, driving its way deep into Skorzenian territory.

1995: The war enters its darkest days for Skorzenia, with Iron Bay itself coming under long-range artillery fire as various elements of the Imperial Army are broken and scattered across the country, while the Imperial Air Force is grounded due to the Reconquistas cutting of their petroleum supply. The incomplete battle-carrier Poseidon still rests in drydock, while prototype "bipedal tanks" to be used by the newly-formed Steel Paladins are not yet battle ready, and the first VANGUARD Special Forces units are just preparing for deployment.

However, mere days before the Reconquistas' final push toward the coast, the single largest concerted guerilla strike in Skorzenian history is executed. Expatriate rebels, armed with weapons dropped in some of the IAF's last supply runs and led by Brother-Scholar Carson, simultaneously strike at every national capital of the Reconquistas.

Though the uprising is ultimately stalemated without doing major damage, a large part of the Reconquistas' invading force is recalled to their respective homes. A desperate, last-ditch armor attack led personally by Brother-Polymath Keyes, using up the last of the Armored Corps' petroleum reserves, stops the invading army in its tracks well outside Iron bay.

With the time bought by the uprising and armored rush, VANGUARD units are able to deploy behind enemy lines to begin a massive sabotage campaign against the Reconquistas, while the Steel Paladins complete their walking tanks' internal nuclear reactors, and begin to counterattack in earnest.

As the year closes, the Reconquistas begin to be pushed back out of Skorzenia, as the Poseidon is launched from Iron Bay and starts a mission to circumnavigate Skorzenia to the south.

1996: After the Steel Paladins manage to reopen petroleum lines, the regrouped Imperial Army and Armored Corp strike back hard against the Reconquistas, while the Imperial Air Force begins long-range air raids on Reconquista cities.

Soon, the Reconquistas are in full, disarrayed retreat, while back home the Skorzenian rebels begin to make headway of their own. Meanwhile, the Poseidon, despite having only a tiny escort of two destroyers and a single submarine, and with just half its full capacity of aircraft, manages to obliterate the combined Reconquista navy. She begins a slow cruise up the Peruv coast, laying waste to every city near the coast as she goes.

In June, Peruv's new capital in Trujillo is captured by rebels. The government buildings are burned, while the President himself is doused in gasoline and immolated publicly, while Skorzenian expatriates sack the city.

By the end of the year, almost all of Paraga, Peruv, Bolviana, Colomb, and Vuezenela have been conquered by Skorzenia or taken over by Skorzenian rebels.

1997 In a constitutional convention held by the leaders of the main rebel groups and Presided by Brother-Scholar Carson and Brother-Polymath Keyes, the nation of New Detroit is founded as a democratic republic and protectorate of the Skorzenian Empire. All Skorzenians who participated in the uprising are granted Fraternity membership, along with any of their immediate family members still in Skorzenia.

1998-2010 New Detroit is rebuilt. The old cities are completely demolished and replaced with new, smaller towns built by and for the Fraternity residents of the nation, while what remains of the native population is rounded up and marched, on foot, across their homes and Skorzenia itself to Iron Bay. Most die along the continent-wide journey, and those who survive are split up as much as possible and forced into the nascent Prole population.

Meanwhile, colleges are built, the Fraternity members receive education, industry returns, and the local Fraternity members turn mostly to ranching, logging, and mining. The practice of raiding neighboring nations, most of whom at least passively supported both Reconquistas, for people to be hired to corporations in need of menial labor (in exchange for a handsome finders' fee, usually more than the new Prole will make in their lifetime) begins.
Last edited by The Steel Fraternity on Mon May 06, 2013 6:50 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun Dec 05, 2010 2:22 am

Government and Political Structure

Country Official Name: The Imperial Skorzenian Protectorate of New Detroit

Common Names: New Detroit, the Republic

Government Type: Federal Presidential Constitutional Republic

Capital City: Carson City (Formerly Trujillo)

Administrative Divisions: States
'
Founded: January 12, 1997

New Detroit's government is an almost-exact copy of the original Skorzenian government, which was itself a direct copy of America's government as it was in the late nineteenth century.

The only major differences are that New Detroit, as a protectorate of the Skorzenian Empire, lacks any foreign relations agency or its own standing military, although the Raiders (detailed below), while private citizens operating independently, can be federalized to act as a militia. Thus far this has only been done in response to natural disasters.

The Steel Fraternity has much less official power in New Detroit than in Skorzenia proper. Since New Detroit is already a democracy, and the population is composed entirely of Fraternity members, there is no need for the Fraternity to have direct control over the government, or the power to replace its leaders.

That being said, since everyone is a member of the Fraternity, and most of those highly placed in the Fraternity are highly placed in the Government and vice versa, it still remains very much an eminent power in New Detroit. It just so happens that since both the Fraternity and New Detroit are run democratically, by the same people, there is almost never any conflict between the two.

Unlike in Skorzenia proper, however, in New Detroit, the official government has the final say in these matters.

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Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun Dec 05, 2010 2:29 am

The Steel Fraternity

The Fraternity is a monolithic organization across both Skorzenia and New Detroit. This means that all Fraternity members in New Detroit follow the same rules, use the same titles, and take part in the same governing processes as the rest of the Fraternity.

They are different from their counterparts in Skorzenia proper, however, in the disproportionately high number of technical professional and engineering Brothers-Scientific and number of Brothers-Militant in their ranks. Despite forming no more than a sixth of the Fraternity's members, the people of New Detroit make up more than thirty percent of the Empire's engineers, more than forty percent of the Brothers-Militant, and fully half the VANGUARD Special Forces and Steel Paladins.

They are also unique in that in addition to voting in the selection of the Elders of the Fraternity, who run the Empire, they are also allowed to vote directly for their own government representatives, while in the Empire those officials are appointed by their superiors, going all the way back to the Brother-Polymath and Elders.

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Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun Dec 05, 2010 2:43 am

Economy:

Average Yearly Income: $400,000 USD.

Population Below Poverty Line: None. The Fraternity looks after its own, and there are no Proles in New Detroit.

Unemployment Rate: <1% There are plenty of jobs available, the Raiders are always hiring, and if none of the current Raiding groups take a job-seeker's fancy, they can get some of their friends together and start their own.

National Government Budget: $120 billion USD, most of which is forwarded directly to the Imperial Skorzenian Military. The tiny percentage remaining is used to pay for law enforcement, basic infrastructure, and governmental administration costs.

Industry: Mining, logging, oil drilling and refinery, ethanol production, limited firearms and automobile manufacturing.

Electricity Production: Equal to internal demand, produced mostly through hydropower, coal, nuclear plants, and solar energy.

Oil Production: Exceeds internal demand. Remainder sold to the Imperial Skorzenian Military.

Agricultural Products: Meat, milk, and other livestock products. Some corn for ethanol and sale to Proles, enough other crops to feed New Detroit itself.

Exports: High-quality firearms worldwide, mass-produced small arms for the Imperial Skorzenian military, some automobiles to Skorzenia and other nations, lumber to other nations, oil and ethanol to the Imperial Skorzenian Military, menial labor hirees to Skorzenian companies.

Imports: Various electronics and industrial goods from Skorzenia.

Currency: Ingot.
Last edited by The Steel Fraternity on Sun Dec 05, 2010 2:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun Dec 05, 2010 3:25 am

The Raiders:

The Raiders of New Detroit are the direct continuation of the Skorzenian Rebels who helped overthrow the Reconquista governments. Many of them fought in that rebellion, and many more are the sons and daughters of rebels. They remain relevant to New Detroit and Skorzenia today as New Detroit's informal militia, and as suppliers of new Prole hirees to Skorzenia's industrial and agricultural companies.

Skorzenia has an ample supply of Proles within its own borders, but due to their living conditions, they tend to have short life expectancies, high illness rates, and low levels of skill or education. This isn't generally a problem for the work they are required to do, but there are still plenty of cases where unskilled manual labor is needed that has to be reliable for extended periods and capable of some level of work training.

In these cases, healthy, intelligent people are needed, of which there are practically none amongst Skorzenia's Prole population.

There are plenty, however, in the nation's bordering Skorzenia, many of whom have had long term passive (or not-so-passive) conflicts with the Skorzenians.

For these reasons, the Raiders organize expeditions into those neighboring countries in order to capture likely prospects, move them to Iron Bay or one of Skorzenia's other major cities, and hire them to companies in need of the labor, earning fat finders' fees in the process.

From youths just out of college to retiring members of the Imperial military to down-on-their-luck ranchers to people who just want to make a quick profit, plenty of New Detroit residents are more than willing to go on a raid or two. Or twenty.

Depending on the number and quality of workers collected, a person might strike it rich Raiding. More than a few young men and women who started their professional careers as Raiders have gone on to become some of the wealthiest and most prominent citizens of New Detroit, after making a number of good runs and then investing wisely. Even if they don't break out into the Fraternity's business world, good raiders can always go abroad to mercenary careers.

Of course, it's dangerous work, too. The Empire's neighboors have been on the receiving end of these raids for a decade and a half. While any rumblings of actual counter-attacks are met by training maneuvers conducted by Fraternity jets over capitals, and Fraternity tanks along borders, Raiders make their runs at their own risk. Skorzenia's neighbors have developed a well-justified siege mentality, fortifying their borders to the greatest extent possible, while police and private citizens are always geared up to fight any New Detroit cowboys that might come tearing over the horizon.

The Raiders utilize a variety of small arms and off-road vehicles on their raids, often with one or two helicopters or small planes accompanying their convoys, while large trucks with caged-in beds follow behind.

On a typical raid, a group ranging anywhere from a dozen to a couple hundred raiders will attack an isolated home or small town. First, they quickly blaze through their target area, gunning down any resistance they meet, Then, they make a second sweep to taze, net, or gas anyone they see.

Finally, the big trucks come in, and the young and healthy are selected as hirees, loaded up, and carried off.

In one night, a group of Raiders might hit half a dozen targets, always taking only the best prospects, before high-tailing it back to the border.

It remains one of the pillars of New Detroit's economy, provides the government with a well-practiced and self-funded militia, and allows the Empire to keep its often antagonistic neighbors off-balance, and keeps the already brutally oppressed Proles from stagnating entirely.

The practice is not likely to end until the need for Proles is obviated.

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Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun Dec 05, 2010 3:32 am

People and Population:

Population/Steel Fraternity Membership: 3,000,000

Net Migration Rate: +0.01%

Life Expectancy at Birth: 91.2 years.

Ethnic Groups: White: 65%
Black: 20%
Latino: 10%
Asian: 5%

Religions: Scientific Church of Christ: 55%
Other Protestant Denominations: 10%
Atheist: 30%
Catholic: 5%

Languages: English.

Adult Literacy: 100%
Last edited by The Steel Fraternity on Sun Dec 05, 2010 3:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun Dec 05, 2010 3:35 am

Communications:

Number of Televisions: 3.1 million

Number of Radios: 3.5 million

Number of Telephones: 4 million

Number of Cell Phones: 3.6 million

Number of Internet Users 3 million

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Postby The Steel Fraternity » Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:12 pm

The Steel Paladins

Height: Varies; in full armor, no less than 6'6''

Weight: Varies; in full armor, no less than 2,000 lbs.

Gear: Between 500 lbs and 1,500 lbs, depending on loadout.

Years Active: 1969-Present

Picture

Given the high degree of aesthetic customization of armor allowed for Paladins, the linked image is only representative of the general shape and functional design characteristics of powered armor. The pictured Paladin also does not have the gear harness or weapons usually carried, aside from a side arm. Paladins are usually deployed with at least three long arms, in addition to extra ammunition, explosives, and any other equipment they may need for a given mission, strapped over the chest, arms, and legs of their armor.

Every Paladin is a Fraternity Adept with at least two doctorates in hard science and engineering. Members do not volunteer, but are instead observed from afar, selected by a board of current Paladin commanders, and offered a chance to compete for entrance. Candidates are either chosen from those who have just completed their second qualifying doctorate or veterans of Vanguard. They are then either put through Vanguard training or a doctorate program (depending on which they lack) before being put through the Sieve.

The Sieve is a fifty-mile course through the jungle and mountain wilderness of backwater Skorzenia which candidates must navigate in under seventy-eight hours. Along the way they are opposed by Army conscripts who have been told to guard various pillboxes scattered along the route.

The Paladin candidate must enter each pillbox and retrieve a trinket inside a locker within. They must also bring at least a dozen conscripts' scalps to the end of the route.

After all this, candidates' times will be compared, and those who completed the course the most quickly are allowed to join the elite unit.

From here, the trainees are put through the actual Paladin training, focused on the specialized tactics necessary for fighting in power armor and independent operation behind enemy lines. Following training, each man or woman is implanted with a data port that connects directly to the brain for interface with their armor. Finally, the newly minted Paladins are allowed to build their armor. This is why doctorates are required; each Paladin builds his own set of powered armor.

Each suit of powered armor must meet standardized specifications for weight, size, communications standardization, et cetera, but there is an extremely high degree of cosmetic customization allowed. As long as the emblem of the Steel Fraternity and the individual Paladin's Legio, Cohort, and Squad numbers are displayed prominently, individuals are given complete freedom to customize the look of their armor. Consequently, individual suits of armor vary from purely utilitarian, dull gray machines, to sleek, stylized-looking futuristic contraptions of gleaming, seemless metal, to stylized representations of mythical monsters.

History:

In 1969, the government of the Skorzenian Republic passed backed legislation requiring the archival of all patents and proprietary research data with the Steel Fraternity. Rather than complying, the powerful corporations of Skorzenia openly defied the federal government, and fought back against police attempting to enforce the law with private security personnel. Only the support of other corporations, owned by Fraternity members, enabled the government to ultimately restore order and dissolve those corporations that had attempted to defy it.

Alarmed by this turn of events, and the Skorzenian government's unexpected inability to enforce its will even within Skorzenia's own borders, Brother-Polymath Johnathan Keyes created a new position on the Fraternity's Elder Council, that of Brother-Militant. The first Brother-Militant elected by the Fraternity was Gerald Parker, who was tasked with organizing Fraternity members with military experience into a paramilitary arm of the Fraternity. Of the newly-christened Brothers-Military, those tasked with actual head-busting were dubbed the Steel Paladins.

In less than a year, however, the Fraternity was forced to expand the Brothers-Military more than threefold as the regular Skorzenian military was decimated by the nuclear conclusion of their involvement in the Vietnam War. This meant inducting members without previous military experience or training, and so the Paladins came to form the elite core of the Fraternity's paramilitary arm, rather than its entirety.

During the Skorzenian Civil War of 1972-1976, the Steel Paladins and the rest of the Brothers-Military were responsible for maintaining order and security in the various Fraternity enclaves and neutral zones while the corporate and government forces battled it out over the rest of the country. When the government was finally toppled and the country sank into a corporate police state, the Paladins continued this role, maintaining the autonomy of the Fraternity's scattered, small areas of control and providing what protection and order they could for the surrounding areas.

This era saw only sporadic, light skirmishing between Paladins and corporate police, however. The Fraternity lacked the manpower to effectively take control of the whole nation, but were too well-armed and well-trained to be easily subdued. Besides which, many of the corporations now running the country had Fraternity members throughout their management and executive bodies. So, while the corporations and Fraternity often found themselves at odds, their respective membership and ownership were deeply entangled.

By 1982, the corporatists were too busy fighting a Soviet-backed popular uprising to devote much attention to the Fraternity in any case. Over the next two years. The Paladins saw more skirmishing as the Fraternity enclaves were often caught in the crossfire between corporatists and rebels, or targeted by "foraging" fighters and the bands of roving raiders that began to appear during this period.

The nuclear exchange of the 1984 War drove the majority of Paladins into their bunkers along with the rest of the Fraternity. A significant portion, however, had been forced to flee to neighboring nations along with millions of other Skorzenian refugees over the course of the Corporate Wars and 1984 War. These men would ultimately form the backbone of the Skorzenian guerrilla movement in these nations, and be instrumental in turning the tide of the Second Reconquista.

In any case, the main body of the Steel Paladins remained underground for the next three years as they and the rest of the Fraternity monitored external events and planned.

In 1987, when the feuding warlords that had overtaken the ruined cities and irradiated jungles of Skorzenia were loosely united under the hegemony of a self-declared Emperor in Iron Bay, the Fraternity emerged from its bunkers.

Headed by the Steel Paladins, who now served as the elite assault infantry of the Brothers-Military, the Fraternity swiftly destroyed the forces of the Emperor, placed Brother-Polymath Keyes on the throne, and set about bringing the scattered warlords of the Skorzenian countryside into submission. Over the next year, the Paladins established once and for all their status as the spearhead of the Fraternity's military might, leading the way in every assault.

Though most Paladins had been combat veterans of the Skorzenian Army, this was the first blooding of the organization in open warfare in its own right. They preformed admirably. Most battles spearheaded by the Paladins ended before the rest of the Brothers-Military could be brought to bear, and by the latter half of the war, most warlords and raiders would lay down arms at the first sight of their body-armored forms, with their distinctive gray uniforms.

Over the course of the Pacification, the Paladins were equipped with titanium-alloy, kevlar-backed plate armor. Unpowered and far thinner than the powered armor they would ultimately adopt, it nonetheless vastly increased the survivability of Paladins in the field.

From 1988 to 1993, the Steel Paladins continued to act as the primary shock troops of the Fraternity, protecting the building projects and re-forming infrastructure of the nation as Skorzenia was pieced back together. They also spearheaded the forces tasked with rounding up the remaining non-Fraternity population and forcing them into the labor force serving the Fraternity as Skorzenia's new social structure of prole workers and Fraternity member rulers began to form itself. When domestic labor resources proved insufficient for the Fraternity's needs, it was the Paladins who conducted raids into neighboring nations to round up more people to be forced into the nascent Prole population.

In 1994, the five nations bordering Skorzenia (Paraga, Peruv, Bolviana, Vuezenela, and Colomb), form an alliance to attempt to topple the Fraternity and occupy Skorzenia. Called the Second Reconquista (the same group of nations had tried to eliminate Skorzenia before, in the 1950s), this was the most brutal war that Skorzenia or the Steel Paladins have seen to date.

With the newly-formed Imperial Army and Air Force still largely disorganized and poorly equipped, the Prole populations attempting to revolt, and outnumbered by Reconquista forces, the Fraternity is slowly but steadily pushed back toward the sea. The Paladins provide stubborn resistance, but between numerical disadvantage and spotty supply, they are pushed back with the rest of the Fraternity's forces while taking heavy losses.

By mid-1995, the Fraternity has its back to the East Auroran Ocean, and the capital of Iron Bay is under long-range artillery fire. With the Imperial Army largely disarmed in order to prevent mutiny by Prole conscripts, the Imperial Air Force and Armored Corps almost out of petroleum, and Proles rioting in the streets outside the Fraternity headquarters, the Steel Paladins dug in at the partially-complete Fort Mariposa, just outside Iron Bay, and prepared for a last stand.

In a last-ditch bid for halting the Reconquista advance, The majority of the Fraternity's military forces were moved away from Iron Bay to the north and the south to force the three hundred thousand man Reconquista force to split up.

The Reconquistas obliged, sending two thirds of their force to counter the possible Fraternity flanking attack. However, that still left one hundred thousand Reconquista soldiers to assault Fort Mariposa, whose garrison consisted of the thousand remaining Paladins, three batteries of field artillery, and two armored companies.

Just as Brother-Polymath Keyes prepared to lead the armored force in a final counter-assault against the approaching Reconquista army, the Fraternity had a stunning stroke of luck. The various Skorzenian refugees who had fled to the Reconquista nations during Skorzenia's long years of strife, led by expatriate Steel Paladins, launched a massive, coordinated guerrilla assault against the home cities of the Reconquista armies.

The allied nations halted their advance, and in short order withdrew half of the forces they had dedicated to taking Iron Bay.

The approaching army still numbered fifty thousand, but as soon as they began advancing again, the Brother-Polymath led his surprise armor attack, and halved the attacking force again, tying up nearly twenty-five thousand of the advancing soldiers and drawing them away from Fort Mariposa.

Most importantly, however, the Reconquista army dedicated all of its armor to engaging Keyes' force, leaving only infantry to assault Fort Mariposa.

However, that still left twenty-five thousand Reconquista soldiers to attack the thousand Paladins and thousand supply clerks and artillerymen holding Fort Mariposa.

Over the next seven days, those thousand Paladins held the advancing force at Force Mariposa. Whenever the Reconquistas attempted to storm the Paladin trenches, they were pounded with artillery fire all along their advance, scythed down by automatic weapons fire from the entrenched Paladins, and finally torn to pieces in close-quarters combat, where the tightness of the trenches and the armor of the Paladins allowed the Skorzenians to tear them apart.

Numbers, however, began to tell. By the morning of the seventh day, ten thousand Reconquista soldiers lay dead, along with seven hundred and fifty of the Paladins, and nine hundred Skorzenian artillerymen.

By that time, the Reconquistas had also mostly succeeded in putting down the guerrilla uprising on their home turf, and Keyes' armored force, while it had succeeded in destroying most of the Reconquista armor through superior equipment, training, and tactics, had begun to run out of fuel.

However, none of that mattered. The Fraternity had been stalling for time for the past week as Brother-Scientific Howard Barnes and the Paladins' own scientists completed the miniature atomic reactors necessary for their “bipedal tanks” to operate efficiently. The hastily-finished reactors were then quickly jury-rigged into waiting b-tank frames, hastily armed with whatever weapons were ready, and rushed to the remaining Paladins at Fort Mariposa.

One hundred and eighty-nine Paladins piloting the b-tanks then launched a surprise assault against the fifteen thousand Reconquistas, just as the besiegers had been massing for a final storm of the fort.

The Paladins routed the Reconquistas, inflicting another ten thousand casualties and scattering the enemy force over the course of the next four hours, without taking a single loss to enemy fire. Many of the Paladins were lost to radiation poisoning from the hastily-made reactors and other malfunctions, however.

Over the next year and a half, led by the Steel Paladins, the Fraternity launched a counter-offensive to roll back the Reconquista lines. As the rest of the Paladins that had been scattered across the country were consolidated and safely-built b-tanks were issued, the Paladins were able to swell back to a strength of three-thousand, while the Imperial Army and Air Force had supply lines re-established and were put back into action.

Ultimately, the Paladins led the Fraternity to not only retake Skorzenia, but to conquer the Reconquista nations that would ultimately be reformed into the Republic of New Detroit as an Imperial Protectorate, with those Skorzenian expatriates who had led the guerrilla campaigns vital to Skorzenia's deliverance folded into the Steel Fraternity while the indigenous population was forced into the Prole workforce.

The Paladins continued to be remarkably successful, but through the latter half of the war their casualties rose precipitously. While the bipedal tanks had been devastatingly effective as a newly-unveiled secret weapon, they were quickly proven to be impractical once the enemy got used to them.

Bipedal tanks possessed a much higher profile than regular tanks, which served only to make them easier to spot and target, although their human-like configuration and body-motion controls were much more intuitive than a tank's, and could be operated by a single man. Also, while they were able to negotiate much rougher terrain than traditional tracked or wheeled vehicles, their lumbering pace served to make them further vulnerable to enemy fire.

After the end of the Second Reconquista, for a period running from 1995 through 1997, the Paladins and Brother-Scientists of the Fraternity worked on downsizing the bipedal tanks in order to find a balance between their qualities and liabilities. Eventually, they reached the point where they were no longer vehicles at all, but powered exoskeletons with backpack-mounted power units and plates of titanium-alloy armor.

These powered armor suits were almost, but not quite, good enough. While they eliminated the issues of an oversized profile, and preserved the advantages of deploying weapons too heavy to otherwise be man-portable, with intuitive control, they still reduced Paladins to a lumbering speed that left them extremely vulnerable to handheld anti-tank weaponry.

The solution to this last problem came from an unlikely source. One night, while an off-shift Paladin was unable to sleep, he watched a late-night rerun of a television program about technological curiousities. One of the contraptions featured was a backpack-mounted set of jumpjets which used solid-state fuel "charges" to make jumps. These were impractical for personal use because the backblast of the jets would leave severe burns on an unprotected user, while it was also incapable of smooth, prolonged flight. Instead, it would violently hurl a wearer into the air with enough force to seriously injure, and leave them to fall back to the ground to a certain death.

None of these concerns would pose any problem for an individual in powered armor, and the jets could be made powerful enough to lift the two-ton suits.

In 1998, the Paladins were first issued the powered armor they now use, and officially implemented their current recruitment policy, leaving them in the organization with its current form.

Over the next twelve years, Paladins saw little action, as Skorzenia entered its longest prolonged period of peace since before World War Two. However, they were deployed in small numbers in the Skorzenian intervention in the Lusitanian Civil War and in the very brief Skorzenian-Postan war of 2010, and in both cases proved that their equipment and standards have left them even more deadly than ever before.

Significance:

During the three years that the Fraternity spent underground between 1984 and 1987, morale was a major problem. Between the Steel Fraternity's extensive communications and surveillance systems allowing every member to see just how devastated Skorzenia was, and the normal problems that accompany close confinement for three years, depression, anxiety, and defeatism ran rampant through the Steel Fraternity's members.

In order to stave off problems, Brother-Polymath Keyes instituted a morale-building program focused on promoting the ideals of the Fraternity as exemplified by the ideal Fraternity member. The program took the form of various works of fiction based on three characters: an idealized Brother-Scientist, and idealized Brother-Scholar, and an idealized Brother-Military. The idealized Brother-Military was a Steel Paladin.

The campaign as a whole was successful, and it did not serve to elevate the Steel Paladins much beyond the position of respect they already enjoyed as the long-time protectors of Fraternity enclaves. However, while the program as it had existed when the Fraternity was underground was dropped once the Fraternity emerged, the actions of the Paladins during the Pacification served to improve their reputation among Fraternity members still more.

During the reconstruction of Skorzenia, the Fraternity's morale programs continued to focus on Paladins, with highly favorable news coverage of their various efforts and continued other works propagandizing on them. They were soon some of the most highly respected people in the Fraternity, to the point that the majority of young adult Fraternity members wanted to join the military once their primary education was done, rather than attending college courses. The Paladins and the newly formed Imperial Army were forced to turn away young recruits in droves.

Alarmed by this spreading lack of respect for intellectualism among the next generation of the Fraternity, but not wanting to loose the vital propaganda capital of the Paladins, the Brother-Polymath ordered that the Steel-Paladins implement a requirement for at least one doctorate for new members, and implement a requirement for current members to earn a doctorate.

So things might have remained, if not for the Second Reconquista and the Battle of Fort Mariposa. Thanks to the present of a news crew, transmitting to Fraternity members throughout the battle, the already idolized Paladins were catapulted to near-deific levels of admiration by the members of the Steel Fraternity.

In order to keep the countless Paladin hopefuls from abandoning non-military work, the Brother-Polymath had to order the Paladins to implement a requirement for two doctorates, and to only recruit by invitation.

Still, however, the focus on the Paladins in official Fraternity publications was not lessened, if anything, it was increased. The Paladins are held up as the absolute ideal of the Fraternity, excelling in both military and academic pursuits, representing the peak of both physical fitness and mental acuity. From the time a Fraternity Childer enters preschool all the way through the time they enter college as Noviciates, and even beyond, young Fraternity members are presented with the Steel Paladins as the absolute peak of human endeavor.

However, the Paladins are not presented as superhuman, or beyond the reach of the average Fraternity member. In fact, the official stance in military recruitment materials and the Fraternity's morale programs is that any Fraternity member can drive themselves to meet the exacting standards of the Paladins.

Those standards are not downplayed, however. It is made clear in all publications that the Paladins must be at the absolute peak of physical fitness, mental toughness, academic acumen, and intellectual capacity. Rather than presenting these as limiting factors, however, the Fraternity's stance is to present them as a challenge to all members to prove themselves worthy of being invited to enter the Paladins.

The effort has been successful. More than two thirds of all Fraternity members between eighteen and thirty, both male and female, express the ambition of joining the Paladins. Given the relatively large size of the force (ten thousand active duty Paladins), and the high turnover rate of the Paladins, a disproportionate number of Fraternity members ultimately enter the group, and when they leave, they take their training and their custom-made armor with them, leaving a hardened core of Fraternity members trained and experienced in war, with the best equipment that the Fraternity can offer, scattered throughout the country, should the Fraternity ever be invaded again.

This is not the real point of the Steel Paladins and their glorification, however. The point is to focus as many Fraternity members as possible as firmly as possible on perfecting themselves in every way possible. The point is to maintain the highest intellectual and physical standards possible for the Steel Fraternity, in order to maintain its place in Skorzenian society and Skorzenia's place in the world.

So far, it's worked.

Note: A lot of these weapons are designated “M98 Whatever”. That is because they were mostly built by the same company in the same year (1998) for use with the newly introduced Steel Paladin powered armor.

Close-Range Weapon: Their own power-gauntleted fists.

Mid-Range Weapon:

Skorzenian Arms M98 Grenade Launcher: Oversized trigger guard and grip for use by soldiers in powered armor.

Image

Grenade: 40x46mm

Capacity: 15 rounds.

Muzzle Velocity: 247 ft/s

Effective Range: 350 yds.

Action: Automatic

Rate of Fire: 120 rounds per minute.


Skorzenian Arms M98 Automatic Pistol: Based on the Mauser c96, but chambered for the .700 Nitro Express round. Specifically designed for use by soldiers in powered armor. Too heavy and with far to much recoil to be practical for standard infantry, oversized for use with powered gauntlets.

Ammunition: .700 Nitro Express

Capacity: 20 rounds

Muzzle Velocity: 1,500 ft/s

Effective Range: 200 yds.

Action: Automatic/Semi-Automatic selector switch.

Rate of Fire: 1000 rounds per minute (automatic).

Long-Range Weapon:

Skorzenian Arms M98 Sniper Weapon: A coil gun that fires 15x80mm steel projectiles. Designed for use by soldiers in powered armor. Too heavy, and with too much recoil to be used by unarmored soldiers.

Ammunition: 15x80mm steel projectiles.

Capacity: 10 rounds

Muzzle Velocity: 5,000 ft/s

Effective Range: 10,000 ft

Action: Semi-automatic

Rate of Fire: 60 rounds per minute.

Iron Bay Gunworks VM94 minigun: Originally designed to be mounted on armored vehicles, this model of minigun was later adapted for carry by Steel Paladins once powered armor was introduced. Pictured without underslung ammunition drum. Incorporates infrared laser sight, visible in the Paladin's visor, for aiming, since traditional sighting is impossible, due to the gun being fired from waist level.

Ammunition: .75''x2.25'' FMJ

Capacity: 3,000 rounds.

Muzzle Velocity: 2,000 ft/s

Effective Range: 800 yds

Action: Automatic

Rate of Fire: 3,000 rounds per minute.

Powered Armor:

The pinnacle of the Steel Fraternity's weapons technology, powered armor is the single most vital piece of equipment in the Steel Paladins' arsenal.

It consists of a load-moving exoskeleton, powered by a back-mounted power source, covered with plates of titanium-alloy armor, with shoulder-mounted jumpjets capable of propelling it over a hundred yards to a leap, along with integral CBRN protective gear, a computerized communications array, and an electronic control system operated by computer implants in the motor centers of a Paladin's brain.

The armor plates range from one-sixteenth of an inch thick in the gauntlets to two and a half inches thick on the chest plate, pauldrons, elbow and knee pads, the helmet and the armor over the generator pack. Almost all of a Paladin's body is completely protected from small arms fire, with the exception of the bullet-resistant eye panels and kevlar-covered joints, which may still be penetrated by high velocity rounds.

The thicker parts of the armor, however, can only be penetrated by anti-armor weapons.

Being incapable of stealth and far slower on foot than unarmored infantry due to the lumbering nature of the armor, and unable to take cover easily due to the sheer bulk of the powered armor, Paladins are utterly reliant on the mobility offered by their jumpjets in battle.

While in combat, Paladins are constantly in motion, utilizing the jumpjets to make sure that they do not stand still long enough for anti-armor weapons to draw a bead on them. The jets are capable of propelling a Paladin of leaps of up to one hundred yards at a time, but not of prolonged or controlled flight.

The powered exoskeleton is powerful enough to allow the Paladins to move under their incredibly heavy armor, and also to operate weapons effectively that would ordinarily require vehicle mounting for use. A Paladin in armor is capable of lifting up to three and a half thousand pounds directly over their head.

Paladin armor, due to its weight, can cause serious structural damage to most buildings, possible falling straight through the floor in upper storeys or on rooftops. Likewise, Paladins are severely restricted by environmental factors such as swampy or muddy land, which easily mires them.
Last edited by The Steel Fraternity on Wed May 08, 2013 7:55 am, edited 2 times in total.

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The Steel Fraternity
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Compulsory Consumerist State

Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun Apr 28, 2013 5:40 pm

Skorzenian Law Enforcement

Fraternity Provosts

Up until the 1970s, Skorzenia imported a large fraction of its television from the United States. Far and away, the most popular imported program was The Andy Griffith Show, which dominated the ratings for its time slot throughout its entire run, and remained popular in syndication until 1976, when public feeling toward the US understandably soured.

The show remains firmly imbedded in the Fraternity's social consciousness, however, and many joke that the Fraternity Provost Office uses it as training material.

Although they are as well-equipped and well-trained as any First World police force, Provosts are not technically police. They work directly for the Fraternity, with each local branch appointing its own Provosts (ranging from a single officer for extremely small branches up to a dozen for larger branches), who basically operate as the Fraternity's internal investigative and law enforcement body.

However, since provosts report directly to their local Magos, most prefer to deal with the infractions against Fraternity rules and bylaws they encounter by informal means. They still deal with such offenses as drunk driving and domestic disturbances, but even then rely more on the Fraternity's social stigmatization of such things than official censure. Crimes such as theft or outright assault are quite rare among Fraternity members, and often catch Provosts off-guard, but at the end of the day they are perfectly capable of dealing with them as necessary.

The Skorzenian National Police

The Skorzenian National Police (SNP) do not police Fraternity members in any but the most unusual circumstances. The SNP's jurisdiction covers only those areas outside Fraternity cities (which are policed by the Provosts) and off the main highway system (which is covered by the Highway Patrol Force). This covers the large (mostly automated) farms of the Skorzenian countryside, the uninhabited rainforest, and most importantly, the Prole Slums.

The membership of the Steel Fraternity comprises less than ten percent of Skorzenia's total population, the rest being made of Proles. The SNP's primary (unofficial, but very-much known) task is making sure that the other ninety-plus percent of the population remains repressed and compliant.

More heavily armed and armored than many nation's militaries (certainly better equipped than Skorzenia's own Prole cannon fodder), the SNP make extensive use of drone, satellite, and automated surveillance to keep tabs on the Prole population. When they enter the slums, they do so in force, rolling out in convoys of armored personnel carriers supported by armored fighting vehicles, with overwatch provided by helicopter gunships. When they strike at prole dissidents, it is with overwhelming force, massed firepower, and wildly disproportionate retribution.

However, for all this, they do not rely on brute force alone to do their job.

An SNP officer deployed within the slums is covered head-to-toe in black kevlar armor, with plates covering his torso, legs, and arms. He has a full kevlar helmet which covers his entire head and neck, with a ballistic glass visor and integrated gas mask, radio, and megaphone. He carries an automatic shotgun with three hundred rounds of ammunition, including breaching shells, beanbag rounds, buckshot, and even one magazine of fragmentation grenade shells*. He has an electrified baton and a 9mm automatic pistol on his belt, and half a dozen flash-bang, CS gas, and fragmentation grenades on his chest. He usually has a bulletproof riot shield. He has all the mechanized support one would expect of a modern, high-tech military unit, much less a police force. He never travels with less than an entire squad of fellow officers.

*OOC: Believe it or not, these actually exist in RL.

And all this is not enough. There are simply too few SNP personnel to keep order through force alone; just over 150,000 officers are tasked with suppressing nearly two hundred million Proles. No matter how well-equipped and well-trained they are, there simply aren't enough of them to effectively keep the entire Prole population in check.

So, they let the Proles do it for them. Using bribes of methamphetamines, weapons (factory-made machetes and other blades, that is; the Fraternity goes to great lengths to prevent Proles from gaining access to anything approaching modern weaponry), and most importantly clean food, water, and medical supplies, the SNP props up a hierarchy of gangs of Prole vigilantes. These vigilantes, in exchange for Fraternity supplies and sanction, provide an informant and enforcement network to their Fraternity masters, driving their fellow Proles to the Fraternity's tasks.

These gangs visit more brutality on their fellow Proles on a daily basis than the Fraternity could ever hope to, with harsh “taxation” of other Proles' wages, beatings, rapes, and murders the order of the day. They are the ones who make sure other Proles make it to their shifts in the Industrial Sectors and don't make trouble on their off-hours. Though trapped in the toxic, dangerous slums themselves, the gangs possess a much higher standard of living than other Proles thanks to the safe food and medical supplies provided to them by the Fraternity, though they still fall abysmally short of the standard of living of almost any other country, much less that of the Fraternity.

The gangs are content with their place however, and the other Proles submit passively to their depredations, because the SNP has gone to great lengths to teach all involved that they are to be feared even more than the most brutal Prole vigilantes.

Intervening only when the Prole gangs have completely lost control of a section of the slums, or if evidence of Prole possession of controlled items (weapons, medicine, drug production, anything that could threaten the Fraternity's methods of control) is found. When they do conduct a raid, however, they do it in force, and leave a trail of bodies and destruction behind them. Rarely even bothering with less-lethal methods, SNP vehicles will plow through any buildings or people between them and their destination, while officers will usually shoot any Prole who so much as gets in their way.

If any illicit activity is detected, the SNP will summarily execute anyone and everyone who could possibly have been involved, and do not hesitate to make use of brutal interrogation techniques (ranging from torture to the killing of hostage loved ones) to find those people. They will burn or demolish whole sections of the slums in order to accomplish this; the SNP has even been known to call on the Imperial Air Force to firebomb areas marked for purging.

And if the Proles try to fight back, the SNP have a standing order to kill one thousand in retaliation for every Fraternity member killed.

Taken together, these actions place the SNP in a position of near-supernatural terror to the Proles. The oppressed underclass of Skorzenia will endure almost any indignity at the hands of their vigilante overlords in order o avoid the intervention of the National Police.

Even Fraternity members, though they do not truly fear the SNP, are wary of their power. The harshest punishment the Fraternity has for its own members is expulsion. Levied only for the most heinous of crimes, this is a fate worse than death for Fraternity members. This is extremely rare, and sensationalized by the Skorzenian media when it does occur, such as in the case of the infamous Bourneman Ring in 2001. In that year, a ring of several dozen Fraternity members led by financier Charles K. Bourneman were exposed conducting the systematic sexual exploitation of Prole children.

Though the Fraternity brutally oppresses its majority underclass, there are lines. Their own cultural ethos demands that their actions be rational, dispassionate, and aimed at the practical benefit of the Fraternity and the Empire. The actions of Bourneman and his cohorts were seen as so disgusting and wrong in their own right, so far beyond the pale of the Fraternity's ethics and morals, that the fact that his victims were Proles meant nothing.

After being exposed by a Provost investigation and convicted by a Fraternity Tribunal, Bourneman was expelled from the Fraternity and turned over to the SNP for interrogation. He did not survive the experience, but did give information which led to the arrest of more of his conspirators, who were expelled and interrogated in their turn, leading to the eventual unraveling of the whole ring.

Not all of those caught died under interrogation, and those that lived were turned out into the slums. The Proles, presented with former Fraternity members removed from the SNP's protection, ensured that no members of the Bourneman Ring survived much longer.

These events were closely followed by the Skorzenian media, from start to finish. Understandably, the case made an impression on the wider Fraternity. It illustrated quite clearly that while they may deal with friendly, informal Provosts in the normal course of events, not even Fraternity members are entirely beyond the reach of the SNP.

Ranger Patrol Troop

The Ranger Patrol Troop, tasked with patrolling the roads and highways outside the Fraternity's cities, is the oldest official institution in Skorzenia. They were originally a division of Rick's Rangers (a semi-official group of regulators formed immediately after the conquest of Skorzenia) tasked with protecting and enforcing the law on the young Republic's roads. From 1870 onwards, they protected the roadways of Skorzenia from Indians, the displaced former colonial residents, and run-of-the-mill criminals.

The broader Rick's Rangers group had ceased to exist by the turn of the century, replaced by more formal police forces. The Patrol Troop, however, became so well-established as the regulators of the highways that they eventually became an official, publicly-funded law enforcement agency themselves.

And so it went, with horses giving way to automobiles (large, bulletproof automobiles, none of which ever had an engine of less than 380 cubic inches, because this is Skorzenia) and the RPT essentially performing the task of your standard highway patrol department until 1976.

Following the US overthrow of the Skorzenian Republic, the RPT was privatized along with the rest of the government. However, thanks to grants from the Fraternity and certain corporations, and some truly selfless efforts by its members, the RPT was preserved as a non-profit limited liability corporation with the same leadership and members.

Alongside the Fraternity, the RPT was the only other non-partisan peacekeeping force in Skorzenia during the corporatist period and Skorzenian Civil War. After the nuclear exchange of the 1984 War occurred, driving the Fraternity underground, the RPT was the only functioning force of authority remaining in Skorzenia.

For the next three years, the RPT fought a losing battle against the spreading chaos, warlords, and marauders that arose to squabble over the corpse of their nation. Facing every imaginable kind of shortage (food, fuel, ammunition, equipment, parts...), radiation, and horrendous casualties, the RPT were worn down to a hardened corps of regulators by 1987.

When the Fraternity re-emerged, they immediately began supply and support operations for the RPT. The manpower, veteran fighters, and up-to-date information on Skorzenia's apocalyptic political situation that the RPT provided in turn was invaluable to the Fraternity's efforts to retake the nation. Working together, the Fraternity and RPT were soon able to restore order to Skorzenia.

When they became aware of Brother-Polymath Keyes' plans for the “re-integration” of Skorzenia's non-Fraternity population, a bloody schism ensued. The two organizations had worked together closely for years, many RPT officers were Fraternity members,and the rest were offered Fraternity membership for their efforts in retaking the nation. On the other hand, many RPT officers (including the Fraternity members within their ranks) felt abandoned by the Fraternity, who had holed up in their bunkers and left the RPT to try and maintain order alone for three years. Many others simply refused to take part in Keyes' plan on purely moral grounds.

The end result was that when the order came down to aid the Brothers-Military in rounding up and processing the new Proles, over a third of the RPT's remaining officers refused. Given the extremely high esteem in which the Fraternity held the RPT, this led to an actual attempt at negotiation on the Fraternity's part. After two weeks of back-and-forth, the defiant RPT camp finally issued an ultimatum that unless the plans to suppress the non-Fraternity population of Skorzenia were abandoned, they would stop them by force.

In response, Keyes ordered the Steel Paladins and Brothers-Military to conduct a simultaneous raid on the Patrol Stations of the RPT. Their way into the fortress-like RPT precincts was opened by Fraternity RPT officers from the inside, and the Paladins struck with no warning and effected a merciless purge of the rebellious Rangers. Many Fraternity RPT officers, however, when forced to choose between the Fraternity and their comrades, elected to warn those targeted for elimination. Because they did so, nearly half of the RPT officers opposed to the Fraternity were able to escape the purge and flee the country.

Afterwards, the remaining RPT officers were folded into the Fraternity and emerging Imperial government, returning to more-or-less their previous position of highway enforcement, though the interdiction of fleeing Proles became a large part of their new duties.

Skorzenia itself went through some radical changes as it was rebuilt by the Fraternity, who largely emptied the smaller towns and cities scattered around the country to concentrate their development and the new Prole population around the Fraternity Enclaves they had built around their main bunker complexes.

Skorzenia's modern population is highly concentrated in a few densely-populated factory-cities, which are themselves spaced widely around the country. In addition, there are vast agricultural tracts (mostly automated, but with a few resident maintenance techs to keep things running) and isolated logging camps, mines, and other extractive endeavors.

The cities are connected by air, rail, and a network of superhighways (never less than eight lanes wide, with asphalt laid over massive concrete blocks, in order to make the roads easily passable by Behemoth superheavy tanks). The industrial and agricultural installations around the nation are linked by a network of utility roads which range from unimproved dirt tracks to two-lane blacktop.

These countless thousands of miles of open road see only sparse traffic. Road trains, usually towing over a dozen trailers on the otherwise-empty roads, make up most of the traffic, hauling goods between Skorzenia's cities. The farms and work sites in the countryside are heavily automated and lightly manned, meaning that their traffic mostly boils down to shipping out their products and shipping in equipment. Personal travel between cities is mostly by air, so there is relatively little traffic by personal vehicles.

All in all, the RPT's responsibilities related to policing Fraternity traffic are minimal.

Their responsibilities related to protecting Fraternity traffic are much more demanding.

Skorzenia is a vast nation, much of it wilderness, and its people have long lived by displacing others. The Fraternity emerged in 1987 to displace the warlords who had taken control of the broken nation following the 1984 War. Their ancestors had taken Skorzenia by driving out most of the existing colonial population, who had themselves taken the land from the indigenous Indians.

These displaced people have long sought refuge in the rainforests of Skorzenia's countryside. Today, the mostly lawless areas outside Skorzenia's urban centers are home to populations of fugitive Proles, groups of non-Fraternity Skorzenians who fled the cities to avoid being made Proles, and even some remnants of Skorzenia's colonial and indigenous populations. They all live outside the law of the Fraternity and Skorzenia, making their living in hiding, living off the land and off stolen equipment and vehicles from the Fraternity.

For a time in the Nineties, all of the Fraternity's superhighway traffic, extractive outposts, and roadways were under near-constant attack by these fugitive populations. The outlaws eventually learned, following carpet firebombing and defoliant runs by the Imperial Air Force, that attacking the Fraternity's main arteries of transportation or logging and mining outposts was a losing proposition. Though especially daring or foolhardy raiders may still conduct the odd ambush or a roadtrain or raid on a logging camp, attacks the heavily-patrolled superhighways and fiercely defended work sites have become increasingly rare.

The secondary roads linking the superhighways and isolated work sites, meanwhile, have become far more dangerous. The RPT cannot patrol these small roads and tracks nearly as effectively as the superhighways, and the small, winding routes through dense rainforest are much more vulnerable to ambush. The outlaw groups, for their part, have concentrated even more on the more vulnerable travelers along these routes because of this.

Although both the Ranger Patrol Troop and Skorzenian National Police have essentially the same primary goal (the suppression of Prole resistance of any kind, and the protection of Fraternity interests against them) their methods are radically different. The Proles policed by the SNP are concentrated within the their slums, allowing a similar concentration of force and surveillance against them. This makes the approach of overwhelming force and disproportionate retribution favored by the SNP possible. Meanwhile, Skorzenia's vast wilderness, extensive road networks, and widely-dispersed fugitive populations make such heavy-handed tactics impossible for the RPT.

Instead, Skorzenia's highway Rangers rely on superior mobility and coordination to protect the superhighways and conduct lightning raids against those outlaw bands and settlements that they can locate.

The standard RPT patrolling doctrine calls for large numbers of vehicles to patrol alone, covering as much roadway as possible. If any one unit encounters outlaws or comes under attack, they radio for reinforcements and all nearby units converge on the location to render support. If any Ranger unit or group of units should find themselves too badly outnumbered, they call in support from the RPT's helicopter gunship wing and retreat. When they locate vulnerable or especially important outlaw positions, they mass an attack force and conduct a lightning strike against it.

Above all, RPT tactics boil down to moving fast, avoiding superior forces, and striking where their enemies are weak.

RPT Equipment

The official colors of the RPT are black and red, dating back to the original Rick's Rangers' use of black hats and red flags as their identifying symbols. As such, all RPT vehicles and uniforms are matte black, with the RPT emblem (a saber and pistol crossed over a shield) in red.

Vehicles

Any RPT officer's most important piece of equipment is, without a doubt, his vehicle. Because of the Troop's reliance on mobility, they employ a wide variety of vehicles ranging from patrol cars to helicopter gunships. These are some of the most important.

IMC Wolf Four-Door Sedan

Engine: 440 cu in V8

Transmission: 4-Spd manual w/overdrive

Wheelbase: 121 in

The Industrial Motor Corporation Wolf is the workhorse of the RPT. A lightly-armored version of the four-door sedan with ballistic glass serves as the primary patrol vehicle of the RPT. Deployed with two officers as the standard Patrol Unit of the RPT. With more trunk and cab space than any other car used by the RPT, these vehicles are deployed with a rifle and a shotgun, in addition to extra ammunition and grenades, to be used in support of any “wolf pack” attack carried out by the RPT. They are also the only widely-deployed RPT vehicles with a back seat for prisoner transport, though this is rarely used.

IMC Wolf Two-Door Coupe

Engine: 440 cu in V10

Transmission: 5-Spd manual w/overdrive

Wheelbase: 121 in

The Interceptor Units deployed by the RPT consist of two officers in a Wolf coupe. Like the sedans deployed, the RPT-model coupes have light armor around the engine block and passenger compartment, as well as bulletproof windows. The primary fast-response vehicles of the RPT, they carry less equipment and armament than the Patrol Units, and have no space for prisoner transport.

Mayer Highwayman

Engine: 550 cu in V12 w/supercharger

Transmission: 6-Spd manual

Wheelbase: 127 in

A Pursuit Unit is deployed with a single veteran Ranger and extra equipment both. Deployed to pursue and destroy outlaw vehicles or the odd Fraternity fugitive on the superhighways. These units have the second most dangerous duty in the RPT, after the motorcycle units.

The Mayer Highwayman is a two-door muscle car, with a long and storied presence in Skorzenia's automotive history. The first model to bear the name was a roadster introduced in 1932, and Mayer and Sons has produced a two-door car bearing the Highwayman name every model year since, with the only hiatus being between the 1984 War and the re-emergence of the Fraternity, when no Skorzenian automakers were able to maintain production.

Alvarez Colt

Engine: 45 cu in Inline-4

Transmission: 6-Spd

Wheelbase: 58 in

The Motorcycle Division of the RPT has the most dangerous duty of any Rangers, and as such its members are chosen from the best of their officers. Tasked with secondary road and off-road scouting, they are the most independent of the Rangers, and as such embrace the “cowboy” roots of their organization more than any others, often affecting bandanas and spurs on their uniforms. Deployed on what are essentially over-powered dirt bikes, they are armed only with their sidearms and rifles in their saddle-scabbards. If the RPT ever identifies an individual high-value target among their outlaw opponents, they will often task the Motorcycle Division with conducting an assassination, sending a single Ranger or pair of Rangers to carry out the operation.

Uniform and Weapons

The standard duty uniform for the RPT amounts to full-body black biking leathers with armored plates covering the torso and thighs. Motorcycle officers also have impact pads and helmets, usually worn with a leather face mask and wrap-around aviator glasses. All RPT officers carry their Norris sidearm in a low, tied-down holster, and many also wear bandoleers with extra ammunition for their long guns.

Norris .44

Essentially a cartridge version of the 1847 Colt Walker, this large, single-action .44 magnum is the standard sidearm of the RPT. It has a capacity of six rounds.

Dean 12 ga. Lever

The standard shotgun carried by Patrol Units and Motorcycle officers. Capacity of eight rounds.

Motorcycle officers often modify their shotguns with hoop levers, so they can be cocked one-handed by spinning the weapon. More than a few Rangers have accidentally shot themselves or their comrades doing this, but the practice shows no signs of abating.

Joplin .45-70

An accurate, lever-action rifle with a tube magazine in the buttstock. Used by Motorcycle Officers to conduct assassinations of high-value targets. 5-round capacity.

Dean .44 Lever

The standard lever-action rifle carried by Patrol Units. 12-Round capacity.

Star 10 ga. Coach Gun

A side-by-side short-barreled shotgun carried by Interceptor and Pursuit Units. The standard-issue weapon has a 24-inch barrel, but RPT officers often saw it off even shorter, especially Pursuit officers. Generally used to fire slugs through the engine blocks of fleeing vehicles to disable them, or to fire buckshot through fleeing drivers to disable them with rather more prejudice. Two round capacity, of course.
Last edited by The Steel Fraternity on Sun May 12, 2013 3:53 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Postby The Steel Fraternity » Sun May 12, 2013 5:47 pm

The Skorzenian Imperial Military

The Imperial High Command

The Brother-Militant of the Elder Council (currently Thomas Voerman) serves as the Supreme Commander of the Skorzenian armed forces. Directly below him are the Chief Staff Officers (CSOs) of the Imperial Army, Imperial Navy, Imperial Air Force, Steel Paladins, and VANGUARD. Of these, the most senior at any given time holds the title of Executive Staff Officer (ESO) and serves as the Supreme Commander's executive officer.

Unusually, a number of the current CSOs started their military careers as enlisted. While it is by no means uncommon for enlisted soldiers to make the jump to commissioned officer in most of the world's militaries, it is rare for such individuals to ever become general officers. In the case of the current Fraternity military leadership, the turbulent origins of Skorzenia's government and heavy losses among their officers over the past several decades led to the rather meteoric rise of most of those personnel who managed to survive.

Brother-Militant Thomas Voerman

Born 1956 to Hieronymous Voerman (a schoolmate of Johnathan Keyes and a founding member of the Steel Fraternity), Thomas Voerman was practically raised by the Fraternity. Entering the Steel Paladins at sixteen, he saw combat throughout the Skorzenian Civil War, and had risen to the rank of Decanus by the time the war ended with the collapse of the Skorzenian Republic in 1976. By 1983, he was a Decurio Senioris, commanding a company of armored fighting vehicles.

Voerman and his company were in the middle of conducting a raid against a remote corporate facility in rural Skorzenia when the 1984 War began, and were thus stranded outside the Fraternity's bunkers. They were swiftly able to re-establish radio contact with the Fraternity, however, and Voerman was given a field promotion to Centurion, and placed in overall command of all Fraternity forces outside the bunkers.

For the next three years, working in concert with the remains of the RPT, Voerman conducted operations to maintain order in post-war Skorzenia, while also attmpting to destabilize the warlords and Empire of Skorzenia that arose from the chaos. During this time, he developed a close working relationship with Captain Henry Hopkins, the commander of the RPT. He also began an affair with Mary Lou Hopkins, Captain Hopkins' wife.

In 1987, the Fraternity re-emerged, and Voerman's surface units linked back up with the rest of the Brothers-Military. When Legatus Jackson Polcynski, commander of the Steel Paladins, was killed during the cleansing of Iron Bay, Voerman was promoted to replace him. Over the next year, he took part in the Fraternity's efforts to retake the nation.

In 1988, when the Fraternity announced its plans to re-integrate the population of Skorzenia as proles, Captain Hopkins and fully a third of the RPT refused to take part. Given their previous relationship (and the fact that Hopkins had never discovered his wife's affair), Voerman took the lead in negotiating with his former comrade.

When talks ended with Hopkins issuing the ultimatum that the RPT would oppose any effort to subjugate the people of Skorzenia with force, it was Voerman who planned out the purge of the RPT that was to follow. Voerman also initiated it personally, by going to meet Captain Hopkins one last time, and shooting the other man when he refused a last chance to join the Fraternity.

In 1989, Voerman married Mary Lou Hopkins.

When the Imperial Military was re-organized in 1993 into its current form, Voerman was the first ESO.

Voerman then commanded the Paladins through the Second Reconquista, and personally led the defense of Fort Mariposa, working alongside then-Colonel Myra Abercromby (the start of what would be a long professional relationship and friendship).

Following the end of the Second Reconquista, Voerman adopted the development of power armor as a personal pet project, and saw to its introduction. Then, under instruction from Brother-Polymath Keyes, he oversaw the re-organization of the Steel Paladins into their current form.

In 1999, following the retirement of the previous Brother-Militant, Voerman was appointed to that post, and has served there ever since.

Field Marshall Myra Abercromby

CSO of the Imperial Army and current ESO. An oddity among Fraternity members in general, and the Skorzenian military in particular. Born 1954 to members of the much-reviled Skorzenian Socialist Party, she abandoned her parents' politics to join the Steel Fraternity while studying archaeology at Iron Bay University in 1972. That same year, she was forced to drop out of college as Skorzenia's economy began to implode following the destruction of most of its military in Vietnam. She was then drafted as the collapsing Republic struggled to rebuild its military. She was an enlisted quartermaster until the Republic collapsed completely in 1976. She then found a place serving as a quartermaster for the Steel Paladins in a Fraternity enclave.

For the next eighteen years, Abercromby's exceptional administrative and organizational skills saw her rise steadily through the ranks of the Brothers-Military, and then (after the Fraternity's reclamation of Skorzenia following the 1984 War) the Imperial Army.

By 1994, Abercromby had reached the rank of colonel without ever having seen combat. Then came the Second Reconquista, which very nearly destroyed both the Fraternity and Skorzenia itself. Abercromby and the quartermaster regiment under her command were forced to take on a combat role during the siege of Fort Mariposa.

After serving with distinction there (and more importantly, being the most senior army officer still alive in the Central Theater), Abercromby was given a battlefield promotion straight to Major General and proceeded to command that portion of the Fraternity's counterattack for the rest of the war.

After the end of the war, Abercromby continued to advance, taking the position of Field Marshall of the Imperial Army in 2008, and ESO in 2012.

Grand Admiral James Morris

CSO of the Imperial Navy. Born 1955 in Iron Bay. A lifelong naval officer, Morris joined the Fraternity while attending the Skorzenian Naval Academy at Don Mar in 1973. After the collapse of the Skorzenian Republic and the auction of its naval assets to various corporations, Morris led a mutiny by his fellow sailors to steal an entire flotilla and turn the ships over to the Fraternity, instead.

During the 1984 War, Morris was a Captain aboard a destroyer which, along with the rest of the Fraternity fleet, lay at anchor off the coast from Iron Bay, struggling to scavenge supplies and keep their ships maintained and out of the hands of the warlords or other nations while they awaited the re-emergence of the Fraternity.

During the Second Reconquista, Morris was the first captain of the newly-christened Posedion battle carrier, the first of its class, and commanded its cruise around the Skorzenian coast and decimation of the Reconquistas.

Morris took the post of Grand Admiral in 2009.

Air Marshall Henry Ventura

CSO of the Imperial Air Force since 2010.

Legatus Vernon Hines

CSO of the Steel Paladins.

General Jonathan Steuben

CSO of VANGUARD. Born 1960 in the rural Skorzenian town of Buell's Bluff. Steuben's father joined the Fraternity in 1972 and moved the family into one of their Paladin-protected enclaves in 1973 in order to escape the chaos of the Skorzenian Civil War. Steuben joined the Brothers Military in 1976, in the midst of the Republic's collapse, seeing action against various corporate and socialist factions over the next eight years.

At the outset of the 1984 War, Steuben was a Platoon Sergeant in the company commanded by Captain Alex Selby, conducting operations along the Peruv border. Without time to reach Fraternity bunkers, they instead crossed the border, and spent the next three years supporting Skorzenian expat uprisings within Peruv. In 1987, they crossed back into Skorzenia and linked back up with the Fraternity.

Upon their return, Steuben, along with most of the few surviving members of Selby's company, was promoted straight to second lieutenant and placed in command of a platoon of Brothers Military.

Following the retaking of Skorzenia, Selby championed the founding of a new special forces division of the Brothers Military. When VANGUARD was formed in 1994, Selby was placed in command and hand-picked the first members of the unit, including Steuben. Following the spectacular success of Operation Downfall, the sabotage campaign that played a vital part in stopping the Second Reconquista, VANGUARD was expanded, and Steuben promoted to colonel.

From 2004 to 2007, then-Brigadier General Steuben commanded the VANGUARD counter-insurgency force in Lydenburg.

From there, Steuben was steadily promoted until assuming the post of overall commander of VANGUARD in 2010.

Steuben is also one of the extremely rare openly homosexual members of the Steel Fraternity. Although there are no official sanctions against homosexuals within Skorzenia, the general cultural attitude is quite negative, and few openly practice their proclivities for fear of social disapprobation.
Last edited by The Steel Fraternity on Sun Jun 02, 2013 12:47 pm, edited 2 times in total.


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