NATION

PASSWORD

Martian Times [FT][CLOSED]

A place to put national factbooks, embassy exchanges, and other information regarding the nations of the world. [In character]
User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Martian Times [FT][CLOSED]

Postby Lady Scylla » Sun Jul 19, 2020 1:37 am

Image

State of the Republic
Secretary-General Ewan Roth addresses the nation before the National Assembly

Image
My fellow Martians. Firstly, let me say that it has been my pleasure, and the greatest honour, to serve you in one of the highest offices of our government, as Secretary-General of the United Republic of Mars and Martian Colonies. Since taking office, I have sought to uphold the peoples' wishes, to hear their concerns, and to enact reforms and policies to promote the general welfare and provide for the security of our great nation.

Just two years ago, we as a nation of common people embarked, for the first time in our civilisation's history, on a path towards democracy. You decided at the ballot not only who you wished to lead our nation on this path, but to also put your faith in a new system of government that stood in stark contrast to the older authoritarian regimes of our nation's history.

By casting that ballot, you put your faith in my colleagues and I, that we would both honour and defend the values of our institutions, and uphold the principles of law, justice, and equality. That we would recover our beautiful nation from the broken shackles of war and propel it towards something greater. I am reminded of a quote by Martian political thinker, Albert Fredric that, ''All nations are a transaction between the state and the people.''

In every nation, there is an exchange of power that is either given by or taken from the people. The United Republic is, thankfully, the former, led now by popular sovereignty. But like all exchanges, there is a price that must be made, and a debt to be collected. In nations with authoritarian regimes, the price is the suffering of their people, and the debt is the eventual revolutionary upheaval. In democracies, the price is the people's commitment, and the debt is their faith in that democracy.

It is because of this, that democracies must ensure they have both the people's commitment and their faith. It is a bilateral exchange of power and sovereignty, of civic duty not just to the nation or the state, but to your fellow Martian. Do we divide ourselves at the expense of our countrymen or do we stand together and build a future? These are the decisions made at every election, during every debate, and at every level of society. And at every turn where such an exchange may be made, a noble question must be answered.

In two years, my administration has enacted sweeping economic reforms. We have committed ourselves to the industrialisation of the colonies, to repairing and expanding our national infrastructure, opening our borders to trade and investments, securing economic treaties with foreign powers, and creating public welfare programs such as a federal minimum wage, universal basic income, and housing and employment programs for those that need them.

We have promoted social reform at every level of government, by adopting common law procedures, standardising our law codes, and passing perhaps the most important bill of my administration: the Sapient Rights Act.

We have sought to right the wrongs of the Conglomerate, and establish ourselves as a renewed maritime power in both the Reaches and the Delta Quadrant. We have modernised our armed forces, and increased our border security. We have been unrelenting in the face of piracy and those that would wish to disrupt or threaten the trade and safety of our people. Today, the Hermes Starway connecting the United Republic to our Deltan colonies has been made safe once again.

We have engaged in greater transparency with the public, and sought better diplomacy with our neighbours. In just two years, we have seen the once rural settlements in the colonies now rapidly industrialise and grow into the metropolises they are today. Hypatia alone has seen a population increase that has shattered records, with economic growth that rivals even Laconia. Shipbuilding, mining, technology development and general employment are all on the rise. Our GDP has shown signs of growth.

While none of these achievements have been easy to reach, and indeed, we have faced many challenges. It is fair, I believe, to say that we are on a path of an economic miracle that will propel the United Republic towards new heights that even the Conglomerate failed to reach. Democracy is possible, but while my administration has worked tirelessly for the public, I must finally ask that great and noble question.

How can you best serve our great nation, and your fellow countrymen?
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Tue Jul 21, 2020 3:12 am, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Tue Jul 21, 2020 3:12 am

Image

Secretary-General Slips In Polls As Refugee Crisis Continues
Secretary-General Ewan Roth's poll rating continues to hover around 37% as government attempts to find a solution for refugees

Image
United Republic — Despite enjoying early success, Secretary-General Roth has seen his popularity in the polls continue to plummet only half-way through his tenure in office. National polls had the Secretary-General at his lowest just weeks ago, with a meagre 32%. The numbers have improved to 37% after the State of the Republic address, but the anxiety surrounding the refugee crisis in the Martian Delta has severely impacted Roth's image, and may hurt his chances for re-election if the crisis remains unresolved.

To make matters worse, Roth's party, the United Conservative Party, lost its supermajority in the National Assembly, putting the UCP and Roth's agenda in dire straits. A newcomer to the Rathaus*, the Marshal Party has also been the unexpected victor out of those same elections, calling for a return to Grand Admiral Nerys Harlow's rule as Empress, though it is unclear if the G. Admiral would accept such a referendum like the one the MP is supporting. The National Liberal Party saw modest gains as well that helped remove the UCP's supermajority.

The new political climate in the National Assembly means that neither party has enough support to pass legislation. The Marshals and the Liberals cannot form a majority coalition with their current seats, and are adversarial in policies to begin with. While the Conservatives do maintain a simple majority, streamlining bills through the assembly is now a thing of the past, forcing them to make concessions with one of the other parties to pass any legislation.

The change in the public's mood with the nation's post-war administration, and particularly its first Secretary-General, has become palpable. Roth's economic policies have indeed had positive results, and every bit of data available shows that the economy is looking to make its strongest recovery in history, but much of Roth's agenda has focused on the long-term to sustain the growing nation post-reconstruction, and recovery in the short-term has been too slow for millions out of work.

Many of the apparent boons of the Mutual Prosperity Initiative, the flagship of Roth and his party's economic agenda, aren't likely to materialise for years to come. A refugee crisis in the Martian periphery involving millions of displaced asylum seekers, and a resettlement program to support them have only added to the pains. There have been concerns that even Roth's own party could turn on him if his popularity continues to slip and the Conservatives continue to poll poorly themselves.

After the Republic was established, much of the colonies were officially incorporated into stellarates, and the demographics of the nation drastically shifted practically overnight. The largest voter block is no longer on Mars itself, but in these stellarates within the Reaches and the Delta Quadrant. Hundreds of millions of new voters and citizens that had high hopes for Roth, are now turning on him and his party, and it's become clear to many that the in order for them to succeed, policies must be directed towards these constituents.

Under the Van Allen administration during the days of the Martian Conglomerate, the then Martian Chancellor spearheaded his 'Mars Alone' policy that favoured 'mainland' humans born on Mars. Appeals to nationalism and Martian Exceptionalism, ideas that pre-dated Van Allen and originated with Sir Fredric II, but were perfected under Van Allen, no longer apply in today's world.

Roth may face a difficult election year without a solid solution to the refugee crisis, which has already dragged on for two years and still left tens of millions beyond the Harlow Line. And if he continues to do poorly in the polls, he may face an unorthodox challenge by his own party if they choose to invoke the 'Confidence Clause', which may lead to a prolonged court battle. For many, it'll depend on whether the Secretary-General and the UCP can adapt and do so fast enough to this new era and its challenges.


*The Rathaus (German: townhall), also known as the Bundesrathaus (federal townhall), which served originally as Laconia's townhall during the early days of Martian settlement, is the national legislature building for the National Assembly. Constructed in 2073, the building was a product of Gothic inspired architecture, and was later expanded on in 2178 to accompany the national legislature. The National Assembly decided to keep the building's original name.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Tue Jul 21, 2020 3:19 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Tue Jul 21, 2020 1:07 pm

Image

An Automated Military?
United Republic modernisation of its armed forces sees greater automation, though public and political opinion still divided

Image
United Republic — The Armed Forces Modernisation Act passed the National Assembly two years ago, and while the bill was hailed as a step towards providing proficient security and adaptability for the modern era, it still left divided opinions on a number of its spending targets. Most notably the United Republic Armed Forces (URAF) continued use of automation.

Today, it is not uncommon to hear about the UR's 'automated battalions', 'automated forces', 'droids', 'drones', and so on. They have become the topic of political pundits, talkshow hosts, and military enthusiasts. Some see the use of robots and artificial intelligence in warfare as a natural evolution of combat in general, and argue that it is the future of all combat. Critics, on the other hand, think the cost is either unnecessary or worry about the ethics of having non-organic sentience on the battlefield. Everything from doomsday scenarios to genocide have been used against automation.

Indeed, the United Republic utilises far more automation in its armed forces than many other astropolities, a study conducted in 2180 by the Tayama Institute of Cybernetic Technologies and Artificial Intelligence found that, on average, while cyberisation in foreign military was extremely common, artificial intelligence in the use of automated combat units such as droids was not.

The Tayama Institute's study concluded that this was largely because foreign astropolities had larger populations than the United Republic, but could not discount a number of 'anomalies' in the data because of stigma or fear of automated combat units not too dissimilar to those in the UR. Especially among organic nations that had waged conflict with machine intelligence astropolities such as the Tezeki.

The use of some artificial intelligence and automation is required in space combat aboard ships, as the targeting and typical range of engagements requires a reaction time faster than that of a human, and a series of very complex computations to be effective. The study did find that most nations relied on advanced targeting computers and AI for these reasons, but the overall control of these systems over the rest of the ship, even with an organic crew, varied.

For the United Republic, it has historically always relied more heavily on such automated systems. The nation's small population means that it cannot field an effective combat force against a potential adversary. The UR's origin on Mars is also partly to blame, since the use of robotics during the early days of Martian settlement was necessary, leaving Martian culture more comfortable with the machines it creates than most.

Ret. General Michael Vanlith commented on the use of automated technologies in his autobiography, describing the United Republic as the ''underdog with a bunch of gizmos.'' Vanlith's commentary, while humorous, does go into more depth later about his thoughts on the technologies stating, ''The Martians have always needed to make themselves equal to their adversaries, but lacked the most crucial component to do so: people. As a solution, Mars has always been one of the highest spenders in technology development, using both state-of-the-art systems and artificial intelligence to create a small, but specialised and highly effective force. If they can't win by numbers, they'll be damn sure to do it by carrying the biggest stick.''

An investigation into Vanlith's claims does find that technology development is the second largest expenditure in the defence budget, though a further breakdown of exactly what technologies are being developed by the UR's military is classified. So what are these 'automated battalions' like, and what are they generally used for?

The Martian Times was given special access into the world of military automation thanks to the Defence Department's Research Development Program. There we got to see some of the models being tested and used in current combat trials, and met up with scientists and engineers who are developing these units. Dr. Kellen Foxwell, one of the lead researchers on artificial intelligence discussed what exactly automated combat units do, what they hope to achieve, and the anxiety around this technology.

So what is an automated combat unit?
''Overall, an ACU can be an armed bipedal robot or some type of vehicle or system that is tied into the Valkyrie Array, the central battle network used both by organic and AI operators in the field. Valkyrie collects information from the sensors in our soldiers such as their visual data, data from satellites and surveillance, and compiles all of this information to provide strategies and increase the battlefield awareness for both AI and organic soldiers, so that they can remain combat effective. The ACU functions like any other soldier on the ground, it communicates, it develops strategy, and it coordinates to achieve whatever objective it has.''

Other AI have a personality matrix, do ACUs?
''That largely depends on the model. We've found that soldiers have an easier time working alongside ACUs when they have a personality matrix and some independent intelligence. But the overall level of AI in these units can vary from being fully autonomous, and as you suggested, with a personality matrix, to being a dependent intelligence under the command of Valkyrie. You generally find the latter in automated vehicles like anti-air batteries.''

Exactly how much does an ACU cost compared to the training and equipment cost of regular soldiers?
''For a combat droid, that is the bipedal ACUs we discussed earlier, the cost can actually be about £20,000 less per unit than it does to train and equip a soldier, which requires around £120,000 overall. So they are cheaper to make, but there's also maintenance costs depending on the model, and upgrades, cybersecurity et cetera.''

So what sort of tasks do automated units typically get in combat?
''That really depends, but generally, an automated battalion is deployed into areas for peacekeeping, rendering aid, extraction, sometimes they're used to hold areas or to provide a certain type of support like artillery or logistics.''

So they're mainly serving in a support role?
''They are. I know a lot of people think that we're just sending these forces into areas, for example where there may be a high casualty rate with organic soldiers, but the truth is, the military and government don't want to lose these units. By that I mean, a high casualty rate for organics, may mean a high casualty rate for an automated battalion. Given costs, resources, and so on, they're still a very valuable asset like a regular soldier.''

What is the intended goal of these automated forces?
''To make the battlefield not only safer for everyone involved by putting more boots on the ground, but enabling them to be more combat effective. Augmenting organic forces with automated ones reduces strain and stress, and we've got guys that have served with these units and written us letters or reached out to us saying how glad they were that these units were with them. I know one guy, a sergeant said that if it wasn't for the ping of one of the droids embedded in his unit, they would have been taken out by an RPG. And that's really why they're there, not to replace the organic element but to support it.''

Do you think the UR will ever completely remove the organic element in our armed forces?
''Definitely not. I know there's a lot that think we should, but as I said before, these units aren't cheap overall and they're not being designed for that purpose.''

What do you personally think about the anxiety people have regarding this sort of technology being used in combat?
''I would say that I can understand it. I really do. There's alot about these units, the droids especially, that make people uncomfortable because of the lack of features and that it is a robot at the end of the day. I know many people probably ask themselves, 'can I really trust this thing?' But from what we've heard with soldiers that have served with them is that they are having a positive impact in combat.

They're also not just mindless killing machines. Automated forces are still commanded by organics, based off of recommendations provided by Valkyrie, they have Rules of Engagement, they have the capacity to empathise in regards to droids. They're programmed to understand and be effective in combat and also be able to connect on some level with organics.

I know during the Rta occupation, we went to great lengths to create some features to make the local population more comfortable with them. It's where we developed holographic faces they could project such as a smile or something cute. Which may sound strange, but it had a big impact on interactions with them. I think one of the funnier stories was refugees putting necklaces for goodluck and giving droids food, or the droids letting them paint on their chassis. People need that human interaction even during an occupation.''


Dr. Foxwell's optimism about automated combat units may not outright stop the debate on their use, but learning more about what these units do, how they work, and what their goal is may comfort some worried about the technology. It doesn't look like the future of armed conflict will be automated entirely like some have suggested, and the Tayama Institute's study seems to support that, given that there are civilisations many millennia older than the United Republic that still use organic forces.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:37 am

Image

Multilateral Assistance Package Clears Mars' International Congress
Martian Forum votes in favour of extensive refugee relief package for the United Republic

Hellas Installation, Hellas Sea — Representatives from nine nations on Mars convened aboard the Hellas Installation, the facility dedicated to the international body, to discuss how best to assist the United Republic with its refugee crisis in the Delta Quadrant. The crisis, which has gone on for two years now, has left tens of millions of Martian refugees stuck in the UR's periphery. Anti-refugee attacks, unrest, and a slow response to the crisis by the UR has become a major concern for the Forum.

The UR Ambassador to the Forum, Amb. Guinevere Belmont, reportedly called the Forum into session to submit a comprehensive proposal that could finally solve the crisis all together. The ambitious proposal would mean a major international effort by the Forum nations to rescue refugees that still remain beyond the Harlow Line, and bring them not to the Martian Delta, but to Sol to be settled in Laconia. The aim was that aid could better be delivered to refugees being so close to home, and would lessen the tension in the Martian Delta that has gripped places like Hypatia as of late.

Described as the largest humanitarian effort in the UR's history, the proposal would involve shipping millions of refugees to Sol aboard large civilian ships produced by the Menelmacari and the Roanians, where they would be able to wait in orbit above Mars. The Phoenix Domain has agreed to start mass-producing a new portable medical device and surgery robots based off of Martian designs to speed up the process of cyberisation and implantation of SHARD devices refugees will need to become citizens.

The Taraskovyans, Menelmacari, Eridani, and the Martians will engage in a large-scale infrastructure and settlement construction program in Laconia's Southern and Hinterland territories, which will serve as the new homes for refugees. Refugees will receive food, clothing, medical services, and be eligible for the social programs under the Consolidation Plan. The package is being funded by multiple parties including the Taraskovyans, Martians, Eridani, and the UIK.

Secretary-General Ewan Roth congratulated Amb. Belmont on her success in getting the aid package passed. And as news broke of the aid package, the Secretary-General received a major increase in support. While refugees celebrate the news, nations are now getting ready to embark on a daunting task of creating the logistic supply trains necessary, and the equipment needed to support tens of millions of refugees and truck them across the galaxy.

  • The United Republic's full name is the United Republic of Mars and Martian Colonies, and it is the only nation on Mars that has ever refered to itself as 'Martian'. Because of this, the Martian government dictates that 'Martian' be capitalised and used to refer to citizens of the UR, while 'martian' or 'Mars' plus a noun are used to describe someone from Mars but not the UR.
  • The official name for the UR's territory on Mars is known as 'Laconia', this is because the name of the city of Laconia has historically been used, albeit incorrectly, to describe the entire region surrounding the Martian capital post expansion. It was formally adopted by the federal government, and so Laconia City is often used to describe the capital directly.
  • Laconia was settled heavily during the First Migration by Japanese and Korean migrants, and then later settled by Anglo-Germans during the Second Migration. Most of the larger cities have Japanese or Korean names, with many smaller ones being of European origin. You can actually see the map of Laconia here

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Sat Jul 25, 2020 8:41 pm

Image

OSA Deployment Draws Concern
Days after Forum approves OSA security bill, Sunsetti begin massive mobilisation in East Mangala

East Mangala, MFAZ, Mars — The Security Council convened an emergency meeting after details emerged about the full scope of the OSA deployment in East Mangala. According to defence officials, the Department of Defence and Civil Defence reportedly raised the alarm after detecting what they described as 'large scale mobilisation' on Laconia's north-western border. Secretary-General Ewan Roth also attended the meeting, which was held behind closed doors.

"We are aware of the Outer Systems Alliance and its provocative build-up within the East Mangala zone, and are currently monitoring the situation," Roth told reporters after the meeting. East Mangala fell under the Martian Forum's control, and a resolution was passed shortly after by the international congress to allow the Sunsetti OSA to police the territory among others. A decision the UR abstained from, and one the UR State Department has privately criticised according to internal memos.

One such memo detailed the UR's concerns about the resolution, noting that there was 'little oversight' involved with the OSA, and considered the move to be political and a possible threat to 'international security.' Secretary of State Ria Solomon had abruptly departed Laconia City to meet with Grand Admiral Harlow and other military officials in Temujin station, according to the State Department.

The Department of Defence hasn't released full details about what exactly has been deployed to East Mangala, but noted that the build-up was not only rapid, but larger in force than in other Martian Forum Administrative Zones, particularly along the border with Laconia and Roania's territory.

The Secretary-General stated that as a precaution, UR armed forces would be deployed to the north-western border to closely monitor the situation. At a televised event, the Secretary-General stated that UR would approach the recent development cautiously.

"I have authorised the deployment of a number of Army and Marine brigades, including the Laconian Air Corps, several automated brigades, and artillery brigades to the border with East Mangala. My government is also reaching out to both the Roanians and Sunsetti to discuss the escalation, and hopefully reach a satisfying conclusion that can de-escalate the situation," Roth said.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Sat Jul 25, 2020 8:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Thu Jul 30, 2020 3:29 am

Image

Martian Scientists Make Breakthrough
Martian FTL gate in Kishi system succeeds

Kishi, Solarian Reaches — A decade of intense research and engineering has finally yielded fruit, according to Kishi scientists. A large ring structure measuring 350 meters in diameter and constructed with a new material has enabled the Martians to initiate FTL from a stationary device and transfer a ship to another location. The ship in question, the Martian Navy corvette Pathfinder and its dozen crew were able to enter the gate and travel to the Astral Verge in Delta safely.

"What we have done here is revolutionise Martian FTL overnight. The era of travelling for days to weeks across thousands of lightyears on our current drives is over," Director Yoo, who is in charge of the project, told the MT.

The gate they built relies on a material discovered from expeditions into the Red Abyss, that not only can be manufactured, but possesses some gravitic properties when introduced to a large energy current. So large, in fact, that for the gravity to be noticeable, the material requires a large fusion reactor. One much larger than what is placed on ships currently.

"The downside with this unobtanium is that we can't run around on our ships with gravity generators like you see in the movies. The energy requirements are simply too great to make it a feasible addition for a ship, but works perfectly when integrated with a gate," Yoo said.

In fact, the Kishi-based gate requires three Sakura SFR-7102 fusion reactors to power the gate, roughly two and a half times the power required to run a Martian battleship and its spinal-mounted mass accelerator. While that amount of power is typical for a station, it'd add too much mass and require larger ships to effectively mount, making it impractical not only from a cost perspective, but a design one as well.

Yoo hopes that they can secure more funding to perfect the design and improve its efficiency, but is already optimistic of its implications. Travel to the Martian Delta, 120,000 lightyears away, could be done in relatively short time compared to the near month of travel for most ships. It'd also mean better trade as resources could be hailed much quicker, routes would be safer, and the navy could more easily secure regions against piracy.

"It won't replace the frameshift drives used on ships, since their supercruise functionality to maintain sublight speed already fills the gal for speedy travel in interplanetary space," Yoo stated.

The UR Security Council has already drafted up a plan known as the 'Martian Gate Accords', to be submitted to the National Assembly for a vote, that would allow stellarates and private enterprises to construct the Yoo-Kishi Gates but enforce certain regulations, provide subsidies, and outlaw their weaponisation.

Yoo and his colleague, Dr. Lin, noted that because of how the gate operates, it could be used as a weapon. Lin went on to explain, "When energy is applied to the material and a field is generated, the gate without a link can propel a ship great distance at extremely high speed. You could design a gate or series of them like a mass accelerator to launch an asteroid but with gravity instead of electromagnetism."

This concern over a planet-ending 'kinetic kill vehicle' or KKV, meant that much of the project remained secret with development being closely guarded. Before the scientists were allowed to even design or work on the device, the Security Council put in place strict regulations and drafted a number policies surrounded the project.

Scientists had to be vetted, undergo days of interrogation, and were under surveillance for the entire time they were working. Discussing the project, according to the policy from the URSC, would have meant life in prison. "We were searched and questioned everyday we clocked in and out of work. It was stressful at first, but after awhile you got used to it," Lin said.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Fri Jul 31, 2020 3:15 am

Image

Government Approves Funding of FTL Gateworks
Government agrees to funding proposal by Yoo

United Republic — The Secretary-General instructed the Departments of Transportation and of Natural Resources to release funding to the Yoo-Berlin Technologies Corporation, with further funding being drafted in the next budget proposal to the National Assembly. In all, YB Tech is expected to receive £4.3 trillion in funding to further develop and begin construction of more FTL Gates, with a proposed link from Temujin station to Sol. YB Tech will likely have to fight for mining rights of the material used in the construction of the prototype Kishi Gate, as the Secretary-General shot that part of their proposal down.

Despite that minor setback, scientists have finally named the new material Laconium and detailed how to extract the resource on an industrial scale in the proposal submitted to the government. While YB Tech was hoping to have exclusive rights to the mining of the resource for a period of a hundred years, an obscure law from the Conglomerate Era may prevent that. The Nationalisation of Resources Act (NARA) states that all resources in the boundaries of the Martian State belong to the State for the general welfare and interest of the public.

Even if YB Tech, which has issued a challenge to NARA via the Department of Natural Resources, cannot gain exclusivity it will be miles ahead in the extraction race. Other mining corporations will need to tool up refineries and construct or purchase the necessary machinery to mine Laconium, something YB Tech has already prepared for when it set aside a multi-trillion pound buffer. Corporations will also need to set up supply chains, seek out demand, and more.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Fri Jul 31, 2020 3:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Mon Aug 10, 2020 4:45 pm

Image

UR deploys missile batteries
Winter 2182

United Republic — The United Republic has increased its force contingent along the Mangalan border with the addition of missile forces. The Department of Defence confirmed that units of the 22nd Missile Battalion and the 12th Automated Support Battalion were among those deployed recently to the border. "We are committed to the continued security of our borders," Marshal of the Army, Alex Quinn stated.

The move comes on the heels of an earlier mobilisation of forces by the Secretary-General in response to a recent OSA build-up in the East Mangala region. The OSA, a private military company, was given unilateral power to enforce security of the Martian Forum Administrative Zones, as mandated by the international congress earlier this year. The United Republic abstained from the vote out of concerns given the OSA's ties to the Nimatojin, and the fact that there was a considerable build-up of OSA forces in East Mangala, which borders the Laconia, Nari, Shin-Ae, and Tayama Prefectures.

Since that deployment, locals in the border region have expressed concerns about the OSA and asked their local governments to petition the Governors-General. "It's frightening, really. I've got this tinhat force of mercs just miles from my farm. Ain't no reason for that kinda thing other than to scare us folk," William Dart told MT. William is just one of many that has recently signed petitions to get the government to act, fearing that there could be conflict on the horizon that'd destroy their way of life. William's farm has been in his family's possession for several generations.

Alice Lin, a florist in the small village of Lichtenbourg in Nari Prefecture, told MT what she thought about it. "I moved to Mars just a few years ago after the war, I lost everything. It's been difficult making ends meet but I've made it. And now it looks like we could see more war. You can't trust the Sunsetti, I know that much. I'm happy that (Secretary-General) Roth is doing something about it."

According to the DoD, a number of missile batteries were being established along the border carrying HCM-22 cruise missiles. The Security Council has stated that these systems aren't currently active but will be there as a contigency against any OSA aggression. Anti-Air batteries and missile teams were also among the forces deployed. General Rickard Devon has been appointed to the command of these forces, who is also working with local law enforcement to police the region.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Mon Aug 10, 2020 4:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Wed Aug 12, 2020 2:09 am

Image

National Assembly clears way for referendum
Winter, 2182

United Republic — As election for the President of the Assembly draws near, the risk of a stalemate has resulted in an unexpected compromise for two of the three parties in the legislature. The United Conservatives have agreed to table the Marshal Party's referendum in exchange for supporting a re-election of Cora Rowland to President. Secretary-General Ewan Roth reportedly brokered the deal with the Marshal Party.

Unlike the Secretary-General, the President of the Assembly is not popularly elected but appointed by the National Assembly for a term of three years. The job of the President is paramount to the government, particularly the legislature. The Marshal Party has been pushing for a popular referendum to reinstate Grand Admiral Nerys Harlow as Empress with her previous powers and duties. If successful, it'd likely mean the end of the Republican government as we know it. But many in the UCP believe that the referendum will ultimately fail. The referendum is expected to be held in the coming days once the proposal clears the Assembly.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Wed Aug 12, 2020 2:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Wed Aug 12, 2020 7:14 pm

Image

Referendum Passes as Cora Rowland is appointed President of the Assembly
Winter, 2182

United Republic — Chaos in politics as the United Conservatives grapple with the recent result of the Marshal Party's referendum. By the evening, most votes were in putting the result in favour by 75.8%. Up to this point, the UCP seemed unconcerned about the referendum, feeling that the public had moved on from any suggestion that Nerys Harlow could return to power. They couldn't have been more wrong.

Secretary-General Ewan Roth congratulated the results and made a speech condemning his own party for the 'failed experiment'. The SecGen's remarks shocked Conservatives with some in the UCP breaking ranks to support Roth. The news came shortly after the UCP and MP confirmed Cora Rowland for a second term as President.

"Our future as a nation requires difficult choices, and there is no better person more suited to this than Grand Admiral Nerys Harlow," Roth stated. President Rowland allowed the referendum to go through the assembly following the results, and it was finally recognised by the National Assembly. The referendum reinstates Nerys Harlow as Empress, with her full powers and duties, while not repealing any other government function, leaving the transition of power for the Assembly unknown.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Sat Aug 15, 2020 2:43 am

Image

Grand Admiral Nerys Harlow assumes power in the United Republic
Winter, 2182

United Republic — Grand Admiral Nerys Harlow has agreed to the Marshal Party's referendum, and taken power as Empress of the United Republic. The dizzying array of political turmoil following the shocking agreement made between Secretary-General Ewan Roth and an opposition party, has come to a close for now. Empress Harlow held a private coronation ceremony with SG Roth and President Rowland attending to accept the crown made by the Macisikani.

Harlow had previously become Empress as an emergency solution seven years ago at the behest of the UIK to ensure there was some sort of government in control of the country following the Great War. Back then, the Empress had absolute authority as an autocrat, and decided to wield this power by creating a republican government before stepping down. Yet, despite her attempts to leave politics, her popularity among the public and discontent with SG Roth's administration saw the Marshal Party's referendum calling for her return succeed in a landslide.The newly crowned Empress held a televised speech hours after her coronation outlining what she plans to do with the country now that she is once again in power. Part of the Empress' speech is available below:

''My fellow Martians. As of today, I chose to accept the nomination to become your Empress, and I shall highlight that fact heavily. Being Martian is not a privilege that is enjoyed by any one species, but by all citizens of our nation. For decades, as a common people, we have endured injustice and instability at the hands of authoritarians and deceivers that would wish to shake this nation to its very core. Our empire, once stretching across the galaxy, was wasted and abused by subsequent governments that inherited such wealth and prosperity and utilised them for their own personal gain.

''This corruption and apartheid instigated by my predecessors weakened the Martian State and the Nation. It turned mainlanders against colonists, and humans against xenos. Our nation suffered catastrophic conflict during the Colonial Wars because of this division, and when the Grand Coalition of over a dozen nations was formed, the now weakened Martian Conglomerate was locked into the largest galactic conflict ever seen since the fall of Morgoth. At the end of the Great War, what remained of our once proud nation was a devastated people that were starving, fleeing genocide, and broken.

''I took up the mantle in those hours to create a new government and set us on a path towards a better future, but in my attempts to do good by the Martian people, I chose to abdicate and leave such decisions to a citizenry that was perhaps not quite ready for such responsibility. I realise now that this was a mistake, and a betrayal of your trust in me at a time when you desired strong leadership. Instead, I forwent my responsibility at a time when it was most needed, but I shall not make that mistake again. I have authorised the dissolution of the United Republic's government, effective immediately. All elections for the national government are hereby post-poned, but local elections will continue, and governors shall remain. These governors, who were elected by you to serve as your representatives, shall advise me as we move forward.

''Years ago, I wrote out a memoir detailing my thoughts about the collapse of the Conglomerate and the difficult choices I was faced with. It was a time when I felt like the entire galaxy was weighing on my shoulders. In that memoir, I spoke of how an age had come to pass. How an Old Order had been replaced. And so, with this address, I have finally made the decision to introduce the New Order. I ask of every citizen watching this address right now, to remain steadfast in their faith, as you have always been towards Mars and myself, as we transition towards a new interstellar union. Gone are the days of petty division and rancor, it is time for us to welcome a new society, to build a new future together, to establish a Martian Empire.''

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Sun Aug 16, 2020 10:50 pm

Image

High Marshal establishes new government
Winter, 2182

Martian Empire — High Marshal Nerys Harlow laid down the new government after a series of tense negotiations with the former National Assembly. While the legislature has remained unchanged, the largest changes came to the executive branch, powers between the branches, and the checks and balances system. A second series of accords were signed by the National Assembly and HM Harlow known as the 'New State Accords' that established the new government. An outline of the new government is below:

Executive Branch
• High Marshal
- Serves as Head of State
- Performs Diplomacy
- Sets National Policy (2 Year Plans)
- Commands the Armed Forces
- Has Emergency Powers
- Appoints Governors
- Nominate Secretaries and Justices
- Draft Budget Proposals
- Sets Secretariat Agenda

• Secretariat
- Composed of Secretaries
- Collective Head of Government
- Oversees Departments and bureaucracy
- Enacts Policy
- Veto Legislation
- Enables Emergency Powers

Legislative Branch
• National Assembly
- Composed of Delegates
- Elected for 2 year terms, a third come up for election every two years
- Elected by the Electoral College
- Drafts Legislation
- Confirms Secretaries and Justices
- Recall Secretaries
- Override High Marshal at 70% of Assembly
- Confirms High Marshal directives at 50% of Assembly
- Approves Budget, can request budget items


The Election Commission will be moved under the State Department, and function normally as it did under the previous government. The exception is the new Merit System being implemented by the National Department that will prevent candidates with low merit score from being accepted by the EC during the election.

The Accords outlines an ideal 'meritocratic state' according to the documents. A major feature involves the implementation of the 'Merit System' that will determine how reliable and trustworthy businesses and people are. According to the National Department the system will reward merits to citizens and businesses for behaviours and activities that benefit their community or nation such as voting, performing civil or community service, paying back loans, etc.

The High Marshal was adamant that the system would not be tied to politics. "Political dissent such as protesting and free speech against the government should not be punishable by this system. Frankly, if officials in the government don't have thick skin and can't take criticism or scrutiny, then perhaps they shouldn't be in public service," the High Marshal stated.

The system will be rolled out onto the hive during the next SHARD update, enabling Martians to see the Merit Score of people and businesses they interact with on their HUD. Not only is it geared towards incentivising better samaritanism among Martian society, it'll hold businesses accountable. Those that engage in fraudulent practises for their clients will have their Merit Score reflect negatively on them, possibly preventing business and narrowing access to certain loan programs. The same applies to citizens. A number of tiers will exist, and the higher the tier, the greater the possible reward such as discounts or tax breaks.

Crimes and dishonest activity will result in lower Merit Scores such as not repaying loans or breaking contracts, but this won't apply to 'crimes of necessity' according to the High Marshal who explained, "A homeless man steals bread so he does not starve, that is not a reflection on him but the State. Crimes of Necessity will not be punished by the system."

Other major changes under the new Accords is the State's role in the economy. Started by the previous government, the Empire will continue to establish 'cooperatives' between unions, corporations, and the State with special interest groups and keiretsu. These will be the reaponsibility of the Department of Commerce to manage, and enable greater cooperation towards certain goals while mediating any conflict.

Finally, the High Marshal has cleared the way for Colonial Charters in the Reaches. The HM has directed the Defence Department to draft up a new doctrine to increase patrols and security by the IMN in the region. "We will aggressively safeguard our interest around these colonial systems in the Reaches, while reducing our impact in the Expeditionary Perimeter," the High Marshal announced. The HM noted that alongside other interests, the Empire would be embarking on a rearmament program to modernise its fleet.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Mon Aug 17, 2020 9:20 am

Image

Fifth Fleet arrives in Martian Delta
Winter, 2182

Martian Empire — The Imperial Martian Navy's Fifth Fleet has arrived in the Martian Delta to support resettlement of refugees trapped beyond the Harlow Line. High Marshal Harlow announced the deployment of a number of carrier task groups to the region during a closed-door meeting with the Secretariat. The Fifth Fleet has been operating in the Delta Quadrant along the Hermes Starway to support anti-piracy operations with the Domain before it was reassigned.

"I've authorised the deployment of the IMN's Fifth Fleet to the periphery of the Martian Delta to support allied powers in bringing home our citzens who have suffered great peril these past few years. This evacuation of Martian citizens will be the largest undertaking in our nation's history, and be done so on the premise that no Martian should be left behind," HM Harlow stated during a televised address. The news was met with celebration among refugees who have lived in make-shift camps and idling ships in the Martian Delta's periphery.

The High Marshal also authorised the Civil Corps to assist infrastructure planning in east Laconia, and to head to the Martian Delta to render aid to refugees. The deployment adds an additional 250,000 personnel to the resettlement effort on top of nearly two million naval personnel among the IMN operating in various capacities to support logistics, medical, engineering and transport of refugees.

The High Marshal also released nearly £20 trilllion in emergency aid under the Departments of Infrastructure, and Health and General Welfare for medical supplies, food, and housing assistance. An additional £2 trillion is being allocated to to the Department of Defence in order to orocess refugee applicants joining the armed forces.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Tue Aug 18, 2020 4:37 am

Image

Martian Economic Revolution takes shape
Winter, 2182

Martian Empire — The Martian economy has expanded for the first time in seven years according to new documents released by the Department of Treasury. The news is a much needed boon to the nation after years of recovery and socio-economic upheaval in the wake of the Great War. According to the report released, tens of millions of jobs were added to the economy between 2179 and 2182, with large-scale infrastructure projects being the primary source of job creation until this year when private enterprises surpassed them.

Business creation was also at an all time high, taking advantage of expanding metropolitan centres in the extrasolar territories and opening up the market to foreign competition. The Martian Patent Office reported an almost 300% uptick in patents following the nation's trade policies, stating that competitive forces both from foreign and new domestic enterprises had incentivised innovation for new technologies. It was also the first time the Martian Mark, the nation's currency, overtook the Universal Standard Denominator (USD), or galactic average of strong currencies.

The Martian Economic Revolution

While the results of this will still take time to fully realise, economists say that the news signals the end of the Martian Depression after seven years of economic downturn. Many factors are attributed to the news, notably federal planning and stimulus that helped nurse the economy along, but also demand for new resources and services from the 'power vaccuum' left in the market after the Anti-Trust Act went into effect. Consumer confidence had also increased as the general public recovered from the economic impact of the Great War.

"It's an economic revolution," Professor Liam Boor, Economics Professor of Port Anseris University, told the Martian Times. "Rapid industrialisation in the colonies, infrastructure spending, and new business are driving the economic markers you're seeing here. The discovery of Laconium is also opening up new opportunities and a 'gold rush' to the Martian Delta for businesses."

New advances in nanium and plasteel have also taken the construction market by storm. Nanium is a composite material using Von Neuman techniques to construct objects and has been the subject of considerable research by scientists for decades. Described as 'living metal', it has been perfected and made commercially viable on small-scale construction projects in recent years. Advances in automation however have enabled large-scale use of the material alongside plasteel to create larger components for ships and other machinery used in industry.

These breakthroughs have sped-up industrialisation efforts in the colonies, allowing on-site construction and assembly instead of needing to rely on long-haul shipments from elsewhere. It's also reduced the impact of necessary machinery used in construction. With the new infrastructure, migrations of colonists from rural parts of the Empire have flocked to metropolitan areas like Hypatia which hit a milestone of 80 million people earlier this year. This has created demand for jobs, services, and housing that the market has responded to with companies like Yokohama and Sato taking charge on utilities and housing construction respectively.

The news of the Mark's elevation also saw a spike in the overall value of the Martian Stock Market at SOLEX, with traders buying up Martian currency and investing into dozens of Martian corporations. Yokohama alone recorded almost $34 billion in stock-buys over a short period. The economic recovery has also led to greater bond trading, as their value has climbed in recent weeks. Some of this has been offset by foreign buying of currency and bonds by foreign governments such as the Menelmacari.

National Debt and a Bond Bubble

While the recovery is a good sell to the average Martian, some have expressed concern over the federal debt, which already climbed into the trillions. Federal investment into corporations amid the boom has allowed the Fed to pay back its own investors on short-bonds, which has allowed confidence to remain steady. Long-term bonds, however, have been the largest market for the Fed's recovery program, with an instituted grace-period on federal dividends keeping long-term investors at bay for the moment. These are also the bonds being bought by foreign governments.

Yet, the concern is whether the Fed will be able to pay those dividends in the coming years if growth slows again. This has led many to speculate whether there could be a 'bond bubble' later that could cause a federal default. The Treasury, however, seems to have a plan to avoid this. Last year the Department of Treasury created the 'Treasury Bond Refinance Program' as a sort of trust that the Fed can pay into to shore up a 'buffer' once the grace period runs out on long-bonds. Payment information into the program is publicly available, and the Fed has started paying into the program. This has helped maintain investor confidence and lessened concerns of a potential bubble.

Conclusion

The end of the Depression brings great news to an embattared nation that has struggled under reconstruction since the Great War. Industrialisation and a demographic shift will have an impact on the nation's economy and identity for decades to come. New technologies are enabling the Martians to build and recover at an impressive rate, even while social issues still remain such as the refugee crisis.

Overall, the Martian Economic Revolution is reshaping the nation for the better, with analysts expecting a rise in living standards and wages all the while production efficiency continues to climb.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Tue Aug 18, 2020 4:44 am, edited 3 times in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Tue Aug 18, 2020 9:02 pm

Image

Imperial Martian Navy rolls out seventh fleet
Winter, 2182

Martian Empire — High Marshal Harlow attended a ceremony in Alula in the Cassio Reach to christen the launch of the new Seventh Fleet. The Seventh joins the Imperial Martian Navy (IMN) on the heels of a multi-trillion mark rearmament campaign originally started by the previous administration. The ceremony was attended by the Admiralty and Governor Sarah Inverness, who also announced that Alula would serve as the fleet's port-of-call.

The Seventh, known as the 'Black Fleet' among the IMN, is the first of its kind incorporating new fleet designs and technology to safeguard Martian interest. Shipyards across the nation have been manufacturing vessels amid the new infrastructure projects, with a 5% increase in the defence budget creating a manufacturing boom. Three more fleets are reportedly under construction according to the DoD.

High Marshal Harlow attended the event to congratulate sailors joining the nation's newest fleet, and to appoint Admiral Serano to command of the force. "With this new addition, I know our frontier in Delta is now safe," Harlow stated. While the exact number of warships in the fleet is classified, it's been described as comparable to the Fifth Fleet, the nation's largest.

The fleet itself incorporates new ship designs with geater focus on synergy between the various components. New weapon systems, armour, and shields have also been incorporated into the designs, bolstering fleet capabilities as the nation adopts a new naval doctrine to counter aggressive states in the region.

The Laconia Naval Conference last year detailed their new naval doctrine, describing how changing astropolitics are requiring more adaptability in naval combat and new design considerations across the board for many nations. The Conference determined that the IMN would need major retrofitting and rearmament to replace outdated warships and technology to make it more competitive in naval theatres. Most notably, large dreadnought-style warships had fallen out of use among many navies, and the Martian's fleet of twelve dreadnought-style battleships were no exception, having been mothballed since 2170.

Instead, the IMN chose to focus on designing ships around medium-class vessels, making the cruiser the main workhorse with the most flexibility, and then augmenting fleet power around them with different ships with more specialised roles.

The new battleships built by Yokohama had turned original naval theory on such capital ships on its head by making them anti-orbital platforms designed to take down stations and installations with sheer firepower. This filled a niche in the IMN's ability to long-gun system defences before the main force arrived.

Carriers became more dedicated to logistics for the fleet as the need for ground combat has significantly decreased with greater advancements in ship weapon systems and counter-measures. Instead, new carriers will be focused on intercepting missiles and smaller craft while providing supplies and equipment for the fleet. This has drastically improved fleet sustainable operations for long periods of time and allowing it to operate at further distances from supply lines.

Battlecruisers have remained the faster, more agile intermediary of battleships and cruisers, dedicated to taking down other capital vessels with their powerful arsenal and coordinating fleet operations in a theatre of war. While not as heavily armoured as battleships, their ability to carry destroyers and frigates enables them a respectable contigent of defence and adaptability not seen with pre-war battlecruisers.

Cruisers have taken the role of becoming the fleet's workhorse where most operations originate. The Naval Conference wanted a versatile warship that could be almost modular and capable of performing a number of tasks simultaneously or focus on one task specifically. The result was a wide array of specialised and modular warships designed to complement the fleet or operate on their own independently. New additions such as Electronic Warfare and Force Recon cruisers also joined Naval nomenclature.

Destroyers changed drastically to support fleet operations more effectively. Lightly defended but heavily armed, they took on anti-ship, and search and destroy roles that could work around cruisers and frigates to increase force projection and deliver critical blows to medium-class warships. Likewise, frigates have lost their logistic use and been more heavily readopted into fleet design as fast, mobile interceptors of other small warships with the capability to screen for a fleet, operate independently, and offer a large volume of fire with its rapid firing armament.

The new design strategy has made the Martian fleet more capable than pre-war designs, and more adaptable to changing conditions in a battlespace and overall naval theatre. The greatest advantage is the fleets' ability to cover more area for longer and with less ships by using tasking and advanced warning techniques to coordinate strike groups against enemy forces.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Tue Aug 18, 2020 9:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Tue Aug 18, 2020 9:41 pm

Image

Negotiations breakdown with Eridani over Reaches Piracy
Winter, 2182

Martian Empire — The State Department released details over recently failed negotiations with the Eridani Imperium over its pirate clans operating in and around the Solarian Reaches. The failure to reach a deal has stalled any progress in further reconciliation between the two former warring powers.

The Treaty of Hypatia governs much of the nations' relations with eachother, as both agreed to avoid taking any hostile actions against the other, or from supporting third parties taking hostile actions against one of them. In exchange, the Martians gave up designs of their FTL drive and ceded the contested territory of Haafingar to the Eridani. The Eridani also agreed to pay roughly $30 billion marks to the Martians for the next fifty years to end the Marto-Eridani Conflict. While that treaty was considered groundbreaking and a start in the right direction to cool tensions, other issues remained.

Months after the treaty, the Martians finally recognised Eridani independence. And further negotiations began to address other matters. Notably, Eridani piracy in the Reaches that could threaten Martian trade with foreign parties.

Over the last two years, the former administration under Ewan Roth embarked on a diplomatic blitz called the 'Mutual Prosperity Initiative.' This established many important trade relations with a variety of states in and around the Reaches, but added a new element of concern. While the Treaty of Hypatia prevented direct actions against the Martians, it left a gap for raiders to take advantage of the foreign traders coming into the Reaches.

This concern led to the State Department trying to reach an agreement to end Eridani piracy. Negotations were reportedly tense, while the Martians were willing to pay up to a trillion marks a year and sign a comprehensive free-trade agreement, and provide access to their gateworks for the Eridani in exchange for pulling raiders out of the Reaches — the Eridani wouldn't budge.

Instead, the Eridani pressed for the Martians to pay up to 60 billion marks per trade partner. A proposition the Martian delegation refused to even consider. The negotiations were further mired by 'rude rhetoric and insults' by the Eridani delegation. Three times the Martians raised the overall amount they would pay per year up to a trillion marks but continued to be stonewalled. Finally, the negotiations were pulled out of.

With no deal, the situation in the Reaches becomes precarious. The Martian Expeditionary Perimeter around Sol which functions as an identification zone for the IMN was established to counter pirates raiding trade lanes in the Reaches. Yet, by the Treaty of Hypatia, the Martians cannot take action against the Eridani, putting the IMN in a difficult position. If the IMN honours its commitment and takes action against the pirates, it could provoke further conflict with the Eridani which harbours them. A situation that neither power seemingly wants, but not one they are willing to avoid with a new agreement. The next step, according to the State Department, will be petitioning the Martian Forum, the international congress on Mars, to mediate some sort of agreement between the two powers.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Tue Aug 18, 2020 9:47 pm, edited 3 times in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Sat Aug 22, 2020 9:21 pm

Image

Year 2200: The New Century

Martian Empire — Yesterday it was 2182, the Martian Empire has recovered from its economic depression, the Great Galactic War ended in 2177. The Grand Coalition that brought the Martian Conglomerate to heel has since disbanded. Today, it is 2200. The Dawn of a New Century.

For decades, the nation has used a calendar that was complex. Conversions were required that were difficult without the proper tools and knowledge, and while Martians from across the Empire have tried to go about their daily lives with a messy, confusing system of time — difficulties remained.

A year on Mars is twice as long as a year on Earth, and half as long as a year on Caracalla. This has made everything from scheduling to telling the time a mess. Spaceliners have had to resort to complex charts between different planets, with missed trips not uncommon for Martians who factored time wrong.

Even worse, the calendar used by the Empire slowly fell behind the Earth Standard Year (ESY) it was based on. This was further compounded by relativity. In an FTL-capable state, time must be standard for legal, commercial, and social reasons. It is why trading on stock exchanges are reminiscent of the 1900s. There's delays. Yet, despite this, the Empire is embarking on a more instantaneous form of travel with its phasegates. A standard must be set.

By an Imperial Mandate, Empress Harlow has done just that. The old calendar has been abandoned and time corrected to the year of 2200. The year she will be ceremoniously coronated as Empress. Time has been standardised across Imperial Space under 'Galactic Standard Time'. But how does this work?

GST will only apply in space at the edge of solar wells where phasegates will be. This is important. Each system will be divided into planetary universal timezones as they always have with their established meridian being compared to GST using additives on the hour. The same will be applied to interplanetary travel. (+5,-7 etc)

Once one comes to the periphery, they'll be at +0 GST. So how is GST determined? Phasegates. Travel through phasegates requires entering holographic space where time is standard everywhere. Scientists have learnt how to calibrate specialised laconium clocks in this dimension that can be read outside of phasegates with specialised equipment. Since phasegates can't operate near gravity wells, it provides a standard time absent of relativity. It is one of the unexpected technological advances made after inventing phasegate technology.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Sat Aug 22, 2020 9:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Sun Aug 23, 2020 2:16 am

Image

Empires Strikes Niceans, Narthis Falls

Martian EmpireThe IMN Third Fleet launched a devastating pre-emptive strike on the Nicean Federation's system of Narthis in Beta, according to the Department of Defence. The National Assembly authorised a formal Declaration of War hours later. The news shocked Martians across the Empire as the nation embarks an a new conflict with an old foe.

According to the DoD, the IMN Victory and IMN Flame of Vigiliance were disabled in the opening hours of the conflict. Despite this, the Third Fleet managed to overrun the Nicean defences and destroy their gate and anchorage in the Narthis system. "We have delivered a decisive victory, and while we have lost 380 brave sailors, we have demonstrated Martian resolve and military superiority over a growing threat in the Beta Quadrant," Secretary of Defence, Sarah Carter stated.

The Martian Empire stated that they had credible intelligence of an impending attack on the Phoenix Domain, who had recently acquired systems in the region. This intelligence on top of reports of atrocities against the Nalari in the Nicean Federation motivated the Martians to act. Empress Harlow announced in a written statement that it was the Empire's "priority to safeguard democracy and the rights of sophonts, specifically those of the Nalari, who share a rich history with our Empire."

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Wed Aug 26, 2020 4:35 am

Image

Martian Victory in Narthian Expanse

Martian Empire — The war with the Nicean Federation continues in the Beta Quadrant with the Imperial Martian Navy's (IMN) First, Third, and Fourth fleets involved in the operations currently happening within the Nicean Reach. IMN forces secured a marginal victory at the onset of hostilities by forcing the withdrawal of Nicean security forces in the Narthis system, and another marginal victory on Kel Narthis itself. Criticisms have been lobbed against the Kel Narthis assault conducted by IMN Marines.

According to the Department of Defence, the IMN First and Third fleets faced off against an armada of Nicean warships where they were heavily outnumbered and outgunned, but secured a decisive victory, thus bringing the Narthian Expanse under Martian occupation. It is the first major victory of the conflict, and has been met with great enthusiasm at home. Empress Harlow stated in a press release that she had discussed the recent victories with IMN commanders, and congratulated them on what would hopefully be a short war.

Not everything has been rosy, however, as some criticisms were directed at the IMN Marine assault on Kel Narthis. Marines were engaged with a Nalari conscript force, and encountered heavier resistance than expected. 233 Marines were killed in the assault, which some considered ''irresponsible'' and ''unnecessary'' given the strategic advantage the IMN had already secured in the system. The DoD stated that due to new doctrines, they were still exploring different tactical and strategic options that will require time to refine.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Sat Aug 29, 2020 7:36 am

Image

Parliament ratifies new Constitution

Martian Empire — The Martian Parliament voted 120-38 to ratify the new constitution of the Martian Empire after it was submitted by Empress Harlow. The Martian Sovereign had accepted the results and nomination of a popular referendum earlier this year, and had ascended the throne with absolute authority over the government after the referendum was recognised by the now known Martian Parliament. The event created a quiet constitutional crisis, as Her Majesty remained adamant that until a new constitution had been drafted, government should still function to the old law.

The new constitution established a federal constitutional monarchy with the executive branch being shared by the Sovereign and the Secretariat — the latter being subservient to the former. Powers are divided between these two executives with the Sovereign functioning as the head of state, and the Secretariat functioning as a collective head of government. The National Assembly, the nation's deliberative body and legislature, adopted the name Parliament in the new constitution.

Compared to the United Republic's constitution prior to the Empress' ascension, not much has changed. The Secretariat still functions as a cabinet but to the Empress now instead of a Secretary-General, and Parliament's role as representing the public's interest in government still remains. What did change was the removal of the Office of the Secretary-General and the Office of the President of the Assembly, and a division of these powers between the branches.

The President of the Assembly was replaced by a Parliamentary Speaker, who will still function as an impartial arbiter in parliamentary debate and set the legislative agenda but no longer serves as the head of government. Powers of the Secretary-General were divided between the Secretariat and Sovereign so that the former could more efficiently manage the day-to-day operations of the government whereas the latter can focus on setting policy.

The greatest change is where the money goes. The Secretariat as described in the New Accords, the agreement created by the Sovereign that included the new constitution, is a bridge between imperial authority and popular mandate. Due to this, the Sovereign has the power to nominate secretaries but they must be confirmed by Parliament. This process repeats in the new constitution over several powers, ensuring that the imperial government and the republican government cooperate.

With that being said, it was decided in the New Accords as explained by Her Imperial Majesty, that the Secretariat should hold the power of the purse and be responsible for collecting taxes, setting payroll and pension, and balancing the budget. ''As the pinnacle of the federal bureaucracy, and as an accordant body between imperial and civil authority, it shall be decided that the Secretariat shall have the responsibility of creating money bills,'' wrote HIM Harlow in the New Accords, explaining the reasoning behind the powers.

Legislative procedure has changed some between the old accords and the new ones as well, and is really the only important thing to note for the average citizen as it describes how everything else regarding government shall be decided in the future. This 'legislative cycle' as HIM Harlow described, may begin with the Sovereign, Secretariat, or the Parliament and be done so for various reasons. As outlined in the New Accords:

  • National Policy and Imperial Assent originate with the Sovereign
  • Regulatory Policy and Execution of the Law originate with the Secretariat
  • Legislative Policy and Popular Assent originate with Parliament

It is the responsibility of the Secretariat to draft bills made from proposals either at the request of the Sovereign or Parliament, but proposals can originate from all three. Then it just needs the assent of both the legislature and the imperial government to became Law before the Secretariat can execute the Law. This process creates some built in checks and balances, though others do exist in extreme circumstances.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Sat Aug 29, 2020 7:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Sun Aug 30, 2020 1:05 pm

Image

Empress enacts travel restrictions on Tezekians, Fenvarians

Martian Empire — Empress Harlow has enacted two travel restrictions on Tezekian and Fenvarian citizens following recent developments regarding the Welded infections originating from Gamma. The restrictions require an outright ban on any entry to the Empire from the Tezekians, and increased quarantine measures up for Fenvarian citizens. The Department for State Security released a statement following the policy:

''Tezekians will be indefinitely barred from entry to the Martian Empire, without exception, and any would-be travellers, migrants, or refugees will be turned away at ports-of-entry and patrol zones. Attempts to violate this imperial directive will be considered hostile and be handled appropriately by system security and/or the Imperial Martian Navy. This directive has been issued by Her Imperial Majesty following reports of the collapse of Tezekian Civilisation at the hands of the Welded, and while the Empress has expressed her sympathies to the Tezekians, she cannot allow such a security risk from occurring within our borders.

Furthermore, restrictions have been applied to Fenvarian citizens entering the Empire. Quarantine will be extended to fifteen days, and all Fenvarians or persons having recently travelled to Fenvaria in the last thirty days will be required to undergo screening by the Federal Biosecurity Agency.

Both of these restrictions have been enacted as a consequence of what the State has determined to be a clear and present danger to public health and the general welfare of the Empire.''

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Mon Aug 31, 2020 5:25 pm

Image

Empress enacts the Kuiper Economic Industrialisation Act

Martian Empire — Civilian activity from the Martian Empire may greatly ramp up in Sol following news that the Empress has enacted KEIA or the Kuiper Economic Industrialisation Act. The new edict permits Martian economic ventures in the Kuiper Belt and annexes Makemake to be used for a future civilian trade depot and port. Given the relation of this region to the Trident defence platforms of the Empire's, it'll also likely be of strategic interest as the Empire pivots its focus to greater development in Sol and the Reaches.

Twenty Martian warships departed the in-system New London Anchorage following the news in order to enforce the claim, which isn't likely to be contested. The Office for Corporate Charters has already received applications from Yokohama, Sato, and DuVal Industries to have proprietary rights to Makemake. According to Her Imperial Majesty's Government, whoever is granted the charter for the Kuiper Belt Economic Zone will need to submit plans on port designs for Makemake among other information.

''We expect that this new initiative of ours will help expand Martian trade in Sol,'' Secretary of Commerce Lachlan Betchel stated. It'll be up to the Empress to decide which corporation receives the charter, though it is expected to be a competitive and tense debate. According to Her Imperial Majesty's Government, this is the start of a new 'Frontier Plan' involving close to home development and colonisation both in Sol and the Reaches.

What exactly such a 'Frontier Plan' will entail is a matter of speculation, but it'll likely coincide with the Mutual Prosperity Initiative, the Colonisation Act, and KEIA. State Secretary Ria Solomon stated that there hasn't been a comprehensive colonisation and development plan like this for decades. Colonisation was halted by Sovereign Fredric II in 2147, a little more than fifty years ago. ''We are a nation of 93 billion people and while we're consolidating in frontier territories elsewhere, we must also consider the new political climate and act appropriately to protect our interests,'' Solomon stated.

The other question will be surveys. Any of the Big Three that wins the charter will need to move considerable amounts of equipment into Kuiper, which will likely require loans from the government. This'll mean that such corporations will need to explain why they will be a good investment of the Treasury's interest. According to the Office of Corporate Charters, loans by Her Imperial Majesty's Government could be up to ま15 trillion. There'll also be the matter of federal entitlements to revenue made off the charter that the corporation will need to agree to.
Last edited by Lady Scylla on Mon Aug 31, 2020 5:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Tue Sep 01, 2020 3:02 pm

Image

Third Fleet routes Niceans in Narthis

Narthis System, Nicean Reach — A large Nicean fleet was routed from the system of Narthis by the outgunned and outnumbered 3rd Fleet of the Imperial Martian Navy (IMN). The strategic victory by the IMN has secured the Narthian Expanse indefinitely from further assaults by the Niceans, and established a foothold for further operations in the region, according to Secretary of Defence Sarah Carter. It'll mark the first time in history, out of the long string of conflicts with the Nicean Federation, that the Martians have actually managed to take a hold of systems and keep them.

''We've demonstrated Martian military might against an old foe, and will continue to seek victory after victory until the system of Nicea is firmly in our grasp,'' SecDef Carter stated during a press conference. According to the Department of Defence, nearly 260 Nicean warships were disabled or destroyed by the IMN during the conflict. The majority being at the battle of Kel Narthis, the planet that gives the system its namesake.

An auxiliary force was also destroyed at the inner belt as they attempted to assault the mobile harbours the IMN had established. While smaller in scale than the Kel Narthis battle, it was an important victory for the IMN as it divided the Nicean fleet. With the rout of the Niceans, the IMN is expected to fortify the system and begin preparations for a full scale invasion of the core systems of the Nicean Federation.

''We will break the chains of the Nalari. We will break down the walls of the Nicean fortress. We will show them Martian strength,'' Empress Harlow announced on a televised address flanked by Martian banners. The news of the victory has silenced opposition from critics in the government and popularity is at an all time high. It was also a rare occurrence that the Empress visited the Fire Temple in the capital to provide offerings to Mars.

She addressed onlookers at the site as she stood by the Eternal Flame. ''We are a nation of diversity. We are a nation of citizens who have built this empire through blood and steel. For the last two centuries we have sought to find ourselves a path in the cosmos. Look no further. As I speak, our industry now grows. Shipyards are constructing new warships, goods are flowing back into your homes, and together we are rebuilding our nation into the Empire it deserves to be. The Conglomerate only wishes it had a fraction of our resolve, our strength as a people. So let it be known far and wide. Mars Invicta!''

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Sat Sep 05, 2020 9:20 am

Image

Parliament asks for renegotiations of Mutual Security Treaty
Resolution clears Parliament, asking for a 'new deal' with Menelmacari
Author Leah Arleth // Year: 2200


Martian Empire — Parliament voted in favour of a resolution petitioning the Empress to renegotiate the Mutual Security Treaty with the Menelmacari. The resolution was submitted by the National Security Committee, citing the 'unfairness and humiliation' the treaty has brought upon the Martian Empire, and the 'risks associated with national security.' The resolution, while non-binding, suggests a full withdrawal from the agreement if a new deal cannot be reached.

Critics of the resolution have argued that a full withdrawal would seriously threaten the Empire's position in Sol, and perpetuate tensions with the Ascendancy. The Attorney General, AG Lyssa Jaenke, weighed in on the matter — ''Parliament doesn't have the power to unilaterally withdrawal the nation from any treaty. Any attempts to do so would likely result in punitive action by the Empress.''

Proponents of the resolution point out that Menelmacari assets significantly outnumber the Martians, despite the fact that both nations are natives to Sol. Some have gone so far as to even argue that the issue is a matter of Elvish supremacy, such as MP Jordan Wynn (NLP). ''They want to ensure that humans are endangered. Whatever half-breed abominations that they are, they won't succeed,'' Wynn said in an impassioned speech in the Forum.

Other MPs were quick to condemn Wynn's racially motivated comments, while some rallied around them. The resolution passed just over the simple majority required, at 83 - 74.

The Menelmacari-Conglomerate Solar Mutual Security Treaty is a strategic arms treaty limiting Martian forces and armaments in Sol. Under the treaty, the Empire is limited to four strategic weapons platforms, of which only three have ever been constructed, and a defence force of 500 warships, of which the Empire maintains 70.

The treaty forced the IMN to develop a different strategy combining fast attack craft, weapons, and warships within the Reaches at specific anchorages under the Serano-Hughes Plan, and led to the development of the new classes of long-range battleships used in the Navy. This force became known as the Solarian Defence Force. The Serano-Hughes Plan also led to the development of the Martian Expeditionary Perimeter and the Apophis Defence Array.

Critics of the Serano-Hughes Plan have debated its costs and efficacy, something Ret. Adm. Rickard Hughes has long argued against, describing the plan as necessary. Debate intensified in Parliament after the Empress summoned the Secretary of Defence and the Security Council to discuss the MEP following her visit with the Menelmacari leadership.

MPs used this as an opportunity to attack the Mutual Security Treaty, stating that the costs wouldn't need to be exorbitant if the Martians could adequately patrol and contribute to the system's defence, rather than viewing the agreement itself as an ulterior motive by the Menelmacari. ''We're strangers in our own home. We have a massive force assembled in the Reaches because the Menelmacari would rather behave like tyrants than cooperate with us,'' MP R'tarri addressed Parliament during the debate.

It's unclear if the Empress will heed the resolution.

User avatar
Lady Scylla
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15652
Founded: Nov 22, 2015
New York Times Democracy

Postby Lady Scylla » Thu Sep 10, 2020 5:28 pm

Image

Empire establishes gate in CE
The Empire of Mars has established gateworks in the Californian Empire as the first of the Martians' junction system comes online
Author Leah Arleth // Year: 2200


Californian Empire — The first of the Empire's gateworks has come online with the Temujin Junction being activated. Alongside this momentous event, the Martians, in accordance with the economic pact signed with the Californian Empire, have established a gatework in their territory, introducing the Californians to interstellar travel.

The Temujin Junction will serve as a connection-point for different gates, with it currently servicing a gate outside of Sol, one in the CE, and another in the Martian Delta. These gates, using laconium, have been hailed as the future of interstellar travel for the Martians and may soon render such routes as the Hermes Starway defunct.

''We are happy to welcome the Californians to interstellar politics, and look forward to future endeavours with them as we move on towards the future,'' Press Secretary Anna Nowell stated during the press conference commemorating the gate.

Next

Advertisement

Remove ads

Return to Factbooks and National Information

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Aestteon, Altpeak, Andocara, Himlia and Vanravar, Vaeruio

Advertisement

Remove ads