Emirates United: Chapter 2 - The State of the State
With local affairs in order, Waheed looked at the bigger picture. How Abu Dhabi was positioned in the world.
The tiny state could barely fit its name upon the map. Certainly dwarfed by all of its local rivals.
As if he needed any reminding of his situation, the population estimates against the rest of the world weren't terribly promising. Indeed Abu Dhabi sat as the sixth least populous country.
This morose looking cloud did have a silver lining however. Abu Dhabi could claim to be the second most literate uncivilised nation in the world behind Japan. Japan also had almost five hundred times the population of Abu Dhabi, surely a power to be envious of from our humble position. Also of note is the presence of Yemen, one of the nations in our neighbourhood, at 21% literacy and four hundred thousand population.
Waheed looked over what budget reports he could find. It became clear to him that the people would have to be bled of their money for the Abu Dhabian budget to run at a surplus. Especially if he wanted to play on Abu Dhabi's strength as far as education was concerned. He was committed to further increasing literacy, indeed it was his hope to try to attract as many intellectuals and teachers to Abu Dhabi as possible, by offering high wages.
Administration was also suffering. Waheed couldn't be sure any of the figures and estimations that he was using were accurate. He advertised for bureaucratic roles for reasonably high literacy members of the state. Hoping that he could tax the people and the import of foreign goods more accurately.
Unfortunately at this time, Waheed deemed the military budget a step too far. He would have to sacrifice heavily here to get the results he wished elsewhere. Confident that a few promises, no matter how false, that the British would swiftly aid the state, would placate the emirs. Waheed would like to increase the spending as soon as was possible, but the mere two pounds of national savings this day might be long coming.
The ultimate move of this budgetary cut to military spending was the dismissal of the Armies of the Sheikhs. This unit composed men of all the emirates, though mostly from Abu Dhabi province itself. They came bearing swords for the most part, though a few were armed with guns. While Waheed was sure they were all brave souls, they would merely be a bump in the road to any foreign ventures into Abu Dhabi.
Abu Dhabi's neighbours could all boast of five or more brigades of men. These troops would be impossible to resist with one mere regiment of irregulars. Waheed would commit to a national army when he felt the budget allowed it. That army would probably be regular infantry if possible.
The education situation was certainly an area of pride in Waheed now, especially in light of recent news on just how many educators were in Abu Dhabi. None the less Waheed was committed to further amplifying this sector. As much as the budget would enable it. Abu Dhabi province was fairly indicative of just how little money was flowing in the national economy.
Technology wise, Abu Dhabi was definitely backwards. Thankfully as a military tech they did possess Flintlock Rifles, meaning the production of a regular infantry brigade was within their powers. In commerce techs they had No Standard. Water-wheel Power been their only industrial technology. Waheed would wait to see how his education plan took hold before committing to any research.
The Sheikhs Council, as the united emirates government was called, consisted of votes from Bahrain, Qatar, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Dubai and Ras al-Khaimah emirates been committed to most major decisions. The emir of Abu Dhabi had an extra casting vote in the case of a tie. They were quite open on how taxation and foreign trade were implemented. Abu Dhabi was a country of faith. The emirs were for the most part pacifist, hoping to merely have what they held.
Lastly, Waheed looked at the census data he had readily available. He had little confidence in these documents accuracy, but would have to rely on them at this stage. Abu Dhabi was for the most part inhabited by farmers. The second largest group was the soldiers, at a rather large 7% considering the size of the state. Waheed was sure this figure would decrease if his budgetary changes were implemented. Clergymen were numbered at 1.6% of the population. This would surely rise in the near future.
The state is predominantly Sunni Muslim with some Shi'a in Bahrain who had emigrated from Persia and adopted the Bedouin way. The people were for the most part in favour of the military, possibly because of the sheer number of soldiers currently employed by the state.
Next: Chapter 3 - The Future is Bright
As an aside. How are people with the size of the screenshots here? I wasn't really sure what would be best and tried to find a happy medium with readability, etc. Hopefully its all pretty easy to follow.