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Thread: Yet this will go onward the same: the Yamato Destiny

  1. #161
    Major Alfredian's Avatar
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    I particularly enjoyed Trebizond getting 20,003 emigrants, while France got 47.
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    Quote Originally Posted by loki100 View Post
    And I do fear for the 3394 who have fled to Scotland ... life under Japanese rule must be truely awful
    I was thinking exactly the same thing!

    Magisterial stuff as ever, a very good read. A pity to see the Court Faction falling but in honesty it had been of little relevance for some time now. The coming elections are going to prove very important one way or the other and very interesting.
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  3. #163
    Major Chris Taylor's Avatar
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    Good read!

    You made good progress in the medical sciences, but that machine parts shortage is a killer. 30% unemployment amongst the majority of your craftsmen? That pot is going to boil over one day soon—or your skilled labour will simply flee en masse to other empires, along with everyone else.

    I hope the Loyalists concentrate on rectifying that situation quickly, or it will be an Achilles heel in the long term.
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  4. #164
    1 million people a YEAR!? That sort of emigration is insane. That is a little over 2500 people a day if my reckoning is right. I am honestly surprised if any country really has that sort of commercial shipping potential. Given that a round trip those days could equal a few weeks and a boat might hold maybe 50-100 passengers if it was a really big one.... there must be at least 200 -300 huge passenger boats leaving weekly. Or to put it simply, a mega passenger boat leaving every 30 minutes.

  5. #165
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    Hi Dewirix, I'm just writing to let you know I've just named you Fan of the Week, congratulations!
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  6. #166
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    I missed this, but congrats on a great update!
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    caught up and following, I loved the EU3 AAR and I'm loving this at least as much

    congrats on the little boy! =)

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    Given up Dewrix?

  9. #169
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blxz View Post
    Given up Dewrix?
    I think he's just preoccupied ATM. Hopefully he'll return to hius AAR once he gets time.
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  10. #170
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    1849: Loyalists and patriots

    He did not think that frequent elections would give rise to frequent changes in the persons elected. On the contrary, he believed that those who did their duty would have a better chance of being re-elected than under the present system, and that greater harmony and good feeling would exist between the representatives and the represented.
    The 1849 election

    Eighteen forty-nine was an election year, but in truth the campaign had been underway for months when Emperor Sakuramachi took the short carriage ride to the Diet House to open the new session. The Loyalists had cut taxes as low as they felt they could in 1848 and could offer the electorate nothing more in the way of financial inducements. Instead, they concentrated on their strong record abroad: the victory over Russia had been achieved with astonishing speed and had confirmed the Empire's position as the foremost power in Asia.

    More insidiously, Loyalist deputies began to circulate rumours that opposition supporters were behind - or at least supporting - the growing unrest on the mainland. The Court - no longer a party, but still the ticket on which many deputies had stood - had been "suspiciously lenient" towards dissent, it was whispered, with the coda that such men put faction before nation.

    The Loyalist also made the most of their control of the administration. Newspapers that had hitherto been answerable to state administrations now took their editorial lines from Kyoto. Candidates were scrutinised as never before for the orthodoxy of their opinions: those who deviated from the Loyalists' line or - much worse - sympathised with the Patriotic Union or the Liberals found it much harder to get their names on the ballot paper.

    Despite the difficulties, the Loyalists did not have it all their own way in. Repeated attempts to focus on their war record backfired badly in Nagoya, whose ratepayers were increasingly reluctant about the costs of foreign adventurism. The Loyalists achieved greater success in Nanyang, but since the state was a hotbed of liberal sympathies it was unlikely to contribute much to the party's fortunes.



    The Loyalists' hard line on dissent amongst the Empire's subjects provoked a backlash in Osaka. It was all that the party could do to keep demand for reforms down to a minimum. Once again, the only areas where the Loyalists' message got through were places that were so poorly represented as to contribute almost no votes.



    The election mostly stayed away from religious policy. In Fenyang the Loyalists stamped down on a weak challenge to the state's role in matters of faith, but aside from that the consensus between the great majority of active citizens held firm.



    Much to the Loyalists' frustration, their economic record came in for heavy criticism during the campaign. The protectionist and dirigiste policies that characterised the Kuroda Cabinet's approach had provoked growing discontent, even in Edo itself. The Loyalists' detractors pointed to the high levels of unemployment and rising factory subsidies, arguing that new thinking was needed if Japan was to escape a financial crisis.



    In the end though - and despite the less-than-convincing responses from some Loyalist candidates - the government's tight grip on the press and the electoral process proved decisive.



    However, the Loyalists' focus on the threat presented by their moderate opponents came at a cost. The Patriotic Union suffered a battering to the point where its share of the representation on the Imperial Council fell to five seats, down one from 1844. The same could not be said for Liberal candidates. In the last election they had been overshadowed by the struggles between the Court and the Loyalists, with the result that only a single Imperial Councillor could be described as a liberal. In 1849 they made great gains, taking six seats and nearly winning a seventh. The growth of liberal sentiment in the Diet was now reflected by their representation at the highest level of government.


    Domestic affairs

    Although all Japanese attention was turned to the elections, a momentous point was reached in the settlement of the Great Eastlands. By mid-1849 the push of colonists eastwards into the vast plains of the interior had reached its limits. Only the smaller Oklahoma claim was yet to be formally and finally established.



    Henceforth, settlement efforts would be directed to the valley of the Ikeda River in the northenmost part of the interior. The mountains and the deserts of the south would have to await hardier (or tardier) pioneers.

    The year also saw the death of one of Japan's military heroes, General Arisugawa, who had served as Commander of the Army of Southern China for almost eight years, remaining in post under the Loyalists despite his links to the Court and leading Japan's wars against Qin, Malacca and Ming.



    With his passing, Japan lost a general whose single-minded focus on the destruction of the enemy bordered on a mania.

    As the army lost a capable commander, the navy found itself a new rising star. Admiral Shigeto Yamamoto was one of a new breed of Japanese naval leaders who saw in the development of steam driven ships a chance to revolutionise the conduct of battles at sea.



    Initially given a staff posting, Admiral Yamamoto threw his energies behind the development of the Navy's experimental squadron. By late 1849 sufficient technical progress had been made that Japan could now contemplate constructing steamers of its own.



    Since the Navy now believed it had ample resources for further steamship development, the Cabinet turned its focus to other matters. Migration to the colonies had long been seen as a good means of defusing social tension, and the scandal of Japanese settlers turning up in the territory of hostile powers necessitated a fundamental reform of the Colonial Office and a concerted campaign to educate subjects as to the benefits of Imperial rule.

    The naval developments also bore fruit for the merchant marine, allowing the construction of steam-driven vessels that could reach their fishing grounds no matter the wind. While the overall effect of this was beneficial, the new boats were quickly able to out-compete more fishermen who clung to traditional methods, adding to the rising toll of unemployment.



    During 1849, the Imperial Army made further improvements to field medical techniques, not only helping more soldiers survive battlefield wounds, but also allowing armies to concentrate more effectively without fear of disease running rampant.

    Politically, the year saw the refinement of the Loyalists' traditionalist views, but almost inevitably this provoked a response from liberal thinkers, who stressed the primacy of the rule of law and the rights of man: Higashiyamaist ideals that had fallen from grace under his grandson.


    Foreign affairs

    Diplomatically, the Russian war against Bohemia, their former ally, hardened into a stalemate as the Russians were unable to reach the latter's capital without crossing Austrian territory. In India, Russian support for a clique of nobles proved similarly frustrating to the tsar when the Foreign Office used its influence to have Count Orlov expelled from the Sindhi court.



    In Africa, Egypt had begun to recognise the threat that her relative backwardness posed in a world of aggressive Great Powers. However, despite all efforts at reform it was thought that it would take many years before Egypt could be truly said to number amongst the civilised powers.




    End of year

    The vote for the 1850 Diet confirmed the results of the general election: liberal sentiment was here to stay. In 1840 liberal deputies comprised 11 per cent of the Diet. Now they held over a quarter of the seats, and made up more than a tenth of Imperial Councillors.



    They were still far from power: the Loyalists and the Patriotic Union were both far from ready to allow the Liberals a role in the government of the Empire, but a trend that had begun slowly was proceeding far more rapidly than many conservative Japanese would like.
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  11. #171
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    great to see this back, and such a wonderful post to start with. Really liked the way you built in all the election related events into the narrative, when I tend just to click and discard ....

  12. #172
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    Welcome back! I wanted to ask what the peculiar flag for France was about.
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  13. #173
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    A very welcome return for this AAR, a cracking post too. The growth of Liberal power may worry the current right wing parties, this is undoubtedly something of a good thing though. Hopefully they can gain power soon.
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  14. #174
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loki100 View Post
    as ever great stuff. But it does look like you are heading for an explosion in China with that level of unemployment. And I do fear for the 3394 who have fled to Scotland ... life under Japanese rule must be truely awful
    Scotland's got some decent real estate; aside from the Highlands and Lowlands they've got a chunk of Canada and the Philippines. On top of that, they're one of the game's industrial powers. On top of all that, I suspect the lure of a good whisky is too much for some to resist.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tanzhang (譚張) View Post
    About time! Hopefully the election results won't take another month!

    I'm actually sort of surprised that Colombia revolted in Colombia, given that Venezuela revolted in Haiti.

    You could always invent one, I mean, you already invented a lower house.
    Shouldn't have taken another month, but did. For that you can blame a perfect storm of World of Tanks and a young son.

    Venezuela not only revolted in Haiti, but managed to do so from Scotland, so that's a fairly confused situation right there.

    As to the political situation, I'm currently working on the assumption that the Victoria II Upper House is the Diet. The Lower House is currently being represented by the Imperial Council, from which the Cabinet is selected. Ideally there'd be a unicameral system selected by election and we wouldn't see the UH rearranged every year, but that's way beyond my power to mod in.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alfredian View Post
    I particularly enjoyed Trebizond getting 20,003 emigrants, while France got 47.
    [QUOTE=morningSIDEr;13252623]I was thinking exactly the same thing!

    I'm all in favour of anything that strengthens the little Empire that could. It's not as if France needs much help.

    Quote Originally Posted by morningSIDEr View Post
    Magisterial stuff as ever, a very good read. A pity to see the Court Faction falling but in honesty it had been of little relevance for some time now. The coming elections are going to prove very important one way or the other and very interesting.
    How soon they forget! I'm a little shocked how quickly the moderate conservatives have become an irrelevance. Possibly I should have modded the POP ideologies a bit more, but then again I think it's fitting to portray the reforms of Higashiyama as something of an elite project that couldn't put down deep enough roots to long survive him. Hopefully his ideological successors can build something more durable.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Taylor View Post
    Good read!

    You made good progress in the medical sciences, but that machine parts shortage is a killer. 30% unemployment amongst the majority of your craftsmen? That pot is going to boil over one day soon—or your skilled labour will simply flee en masse to other empires, along with everyone else.

    I hope the Loyalists concentrate on rectifying that situation quickly, or it will be an Achilles heel in the long term.
    The fleeing part is what worries me most. The Empire has insanely high levels of population growth, but for now I'm just exporting all the gain and more. The Loyalists don't really have an answer for that, and they've got just about the worst set of policies to actually keep people from leaving. Fortunately, even losing one million a year is survivable until the end of the game.

    Quote Originally Posted by Blxz View Post
    1 million people a YEAR!? That sort of emigration is insane. That is a little over 2500 people a day if my reckoning is right. I am honestly surprised if any country really has that sort of commercial shipping potential. Given that a round trip those days could equal a few weeks and a boat might hold maybe 50-100 passengers if it was a really big one.... there must be at least 200 -300 huge passenger boats leaving weekly. Or to put it simply, a mega passenger boat leaving every 30 minutes.
    Yes, I'm not sure that even a westernised Empire could cater to that level of emigration with Age of Sail technology. Despite the 100 million or so people, having one per cent of your population up sticks every year sounds like a tricky logistical proposition.

    Quote Originally Posted by Krogzar View Post
    caught up and following, I loved the EU3 AAR and I'm loving this at least as much

    congrats on the little boy! =)

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    Thanks and thanks! He's currently in something of a mood (due to teething we think).

    Quote Originally Posted by loki100 View Post
    great to see this back, and such a wonderful post to start with. Really liked the way you built in all the election related events into the narrative, when I tend just to click and discard ....
    In my view more could be done to make the politcal side of the game a bit more dynamic, which would hopefully spice up elections a bit. I haven't got A House Divided yet, so I'll have to see what that's done for the political side of things.

    Quote Originally Posted by Avindian View Post
    Welcome back! I wanted to ask what the peculiar flag for France was about.
    It's the Bourbon flag - except in this case it's the de la Tour flag. In this version of history there's been no French Revolution, although France is now a constitutional monarchy following the upheavals of the 1840s (doubtless inspired by Japan's shining example).

    Quote Originally Posted by morningSIDEr View Post
    A very welcome return for this AAR, a cracking post too. The growth of Liberal power may worry the current right wing parties, this is undoubtedly something of a good thing though. Hopefully they can gain power soon.
    I wouldn't hold your breath. Even if the liberals can keep up their current rate of growth, it'll be a decade before they get near power. That's cutting it awfully fine to make the reforms that are needed before the socialists turn up and wreck things (and don't get me started on that - are there no Fabians in Vicky 2?).
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    It's not dead, hooray!

    I wouldn't hold your breath. Even if the liberals can keep up their current rate of growth, it'll be a decade before they get near power.
    As you mentioned before I think, the Liberals are hampered by the reactionaries and the way the game handles coalitions. I also have a sneaking suspicion high jingoism is tying the liberals down somewhat.

    and don't get me started on that - are there no Fabians in Vicky 2?
    For some reason they only seem to appear when militancy is high.
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  16. #176
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    I'm very happy to see another update!
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  17. #177
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    Awesome to see an update!

    It might be that the liberals are indeed rising too slowly...
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  18. #178
    Major Alfredian's Avatar
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    Having seen of the Russians so convincingly are there any threats that scare the Imperial Government?
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  19. #179
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tanzhang (譚張) View Post
    As you mentioned before I think, the Liberals are hampered by the reactionaries and the way the game handles coalitions. I also have a sneaking suspicion high jingoism is tying the liberals down somewhat.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolai View Post
    I'm very happy to see another update!
    Quote Originally Posted by Malurous View Post
    Awesome to see an update!

    It might be that the liberals are indeed rising too slowly...
    It's good to be back

    On the subject of the liberals and their rise, I think that jingoism is probably hurting the conservatives more as they'd have a decent chance of being in power were it not for all the wars (which are interesting). The liberals are doing well despite the low base they started from, Japan's low literacy and fact that because of this the Empire didn't qualify for any of the liberal agitation events.

    In addition, high militancy means that they'll only need around 42% of the UH before they can pass reforms with some sympathetic conservatives. It's touch and go as to whether they can get there before the socialists split the progressive vote.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alfredian View Post
    Having seen of the Russians so convincingly are there any threats that scare the Imperial Government?
    Japan hasn't done much in the way of military research for a while and risks falling behind, which is obviously a major concern. As you'll see in the update, there are bigger armies than Japan's out there, and bigger navies, but so far no-one's got a bigger army and a bigger navy. It could easily happen though.

    Besides foreign threats, there's the ever-present spectre of revolt which keeps the Interior Minister awake at night.
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    1850: The root of all evil

    And when the hon. and learned Gentleman told him of revolutions, and of the state of neighbouring countries, he would reply that he knew no cause more fertile in revolutions than that mismanagement of the finances which reduced the revenue of neighbouring States far below the expenditure, and which had brought on national bankruptcy, and in its train national revolution.
    State opening and Emperor's speech

    The Budget of 1850 contained few surprises, except perhaps that despite the Loyalists' pre-election largesse the public finances were once again on the increase. Rather than reduce the tariff, the Finance Minister announced that the Government had plans for the money.



    Despite the military taking up nearly three-quarters of public spending, Japan's dominance was no longer assured. Indeed, the Japanese navy was now took second place to the French fleet, although Imperial admirals could take comfort from the fact that French doctrines placed a much greater emphasis on raids by light ships rather than fleet actions.



    Nevertheless, the Cabinet approved plans to expand the navy to restore Japanese pre-eminence. At the urging of Admiral Yamamoto, the new ships were to combine sails with steam, allowing them to operate at long range, yet able to manoeuvre against the wind in battle.



    So persuasive was Yamamoto that the Cabinet agreed to build 30 of these new ships on the strength of a single prototype that even the admiral admitted was not fit for military service. Not only did the Government bear the costs of the new ships: it agreed to build a factory to speed up their production.



    With unemployment still a major problem, a steamer production plant would not allow Japan to control the production of a military necessity, and also provide work to some of the thousands of unemployed. That the unemployed in question were within a few days' march of Kyoto was the decisive argument in favour of the enterprise.

    The news that Britain now fielded a larger army than Japan was the spur for another major investment: a chain of forts along the border of the two powers' territories in the Great Eastlands. The Imperial Army believed that the majority of Britain's brigades were stationed on that continent, and ranged against them were but a handful of Japanese.



    It was hoped that the forts would act as a deterrent, but shortly after their commissioning their utility was called into question. In March 1850, the governments of Britain and Mexico signed a treaty of amity and co-operation, quickly augmented with a full-blown military alliance. On the face of it, such a move might seem strange - Japan had fought to free Mexico from British rule half a century ago. However, despite Mexico's violent birth, the interests, culture and commerce she shared with Britain quickly overcame any feelings of friendship towards Japan.

    To the Loyalists, the Great Eastland colonies now appeared sandwiched between Britain’s possessions and proxies to the north and south. The Cabinet was divided on the question of increasing the size of the army; the Finance Minister cautioned against taking on such major additional expenditure, while the War Minister was predictably more bellicose. Ultimately, Prime Minister Kuroda decided against a large scale expansion of the army for the time being, citing the Empire’s success against Russia as proof that Japan had sufficient forces to deal with any threat.


    Domestic affairs

    Despite - or perhaps due to the nature of - their victory in the last election, the Loyalists’ return to power was not greeted with much enthusiasm outside metropolitan Japan. In the Chinese lands, and on the Korean peninsula the Cabinet's fiercely anti-nativist policies were provoking ever greater resistance.



    Another reason to fear a possible attack by British forces in the Great Eastlands was the inescapable fact that, however comparable the opposing armies might appear on paper, the Empire could not withdraw troops from much of China without running the risk of losing control of it entirely. What was worse, the turmoil such unrest provoked was spreading as malcontents fled their homes in search of greater freedoms. For now this mainly affected Japan's colonies in the South Seas, but the threat of unrest on the Home Islands themselves was a constant concern.

    As a result, command of the troops guarding the capital was a vital appointment, as well as a great honour. In 1850 the new commanding general of the Kyoto garrison was named as Kageaki Kodama, a man with close links to Prime Minister Kuroda.



    While General Kodama's impeccable political record might endear him to the Loyalists, he was also a fighting soldier, drilling his men until they could manoeuvre with a speed that left his opponents off-balance and vulnerable. It was therefore ironic that he should be given a posting that was essentially static in nature, but as the ceremonial aspects of the position would bring him into frequent contact with the Emperor himself General Kodama found his choice an easy one.


    Foreign affairs

    Elsewhere in the world the map of the Mediterranean was being redrawn. In April Scotland joined Modena in declaring war on an ailing Moroccan sultanate.



    Meanwhile, the Ottoman Empire surprised an international community that had considered it to be on its last legs following the loss of Istanbul to France in 1818. Somehow, the Porte had contrived to mount a successful invasion of Cyprus, announcing the annexation of the island on August 9th.

    While such concerns seemed distant to the Empire, in December events much closer to home stirred the interest of the Japanese public. Sindh, a Japanese ally, had long held ambitions to dominate the whole subcontinent, but had lately been thwarted by Japan's close links with the other Indian power, Madurai. Expansion to the south thus blocked, Sindh turned its attentions north, to Kashmir.



    The Second Kashmiri war excited much attention from Japanese liberals, who saw amongst the Kashmiri nobility a more enlightened form of leadership than the despotic Shah Thara of Sindh. When petitions to the Government to intercede on Kashmir's behalf were rebuffed, a few brave individuals set out in person to fight for Kashmiri liberties, while many more provided financial backing. Despite this, the outcome looked certain from the start. Sindh had one of the largest armies in existence, while Kashmir could muster a scant 15,000 men.


    The Cleves crisis

    Foreign wars apart, 1850 had looked to be a quiet year by recent standards, but this looked set to change in the autumn, when the German state of Cleves announced it was suspending interest payments on its foreign debt and would not allow existing bondholders to redeem their holdings.

    Though a shock, in some ways the bankruptcy was to be expected. Cleves had run through three dynasties in a century, including eight years of "Hungarian bondage" under Joachim Thököly, which had left state institutions fragile and revenues poor. By the late 1840s Cleves had been borrowing money just to meet everyday expenses and default had looked inevitable to those who cared to pay attention.



    The truth of the matter was that many, including Japanese investors, had not. Clevian bonds had always paid high rates of interest, and to the incautious the reasons behind this had not seemed important. By the time they did, it was too late. Amongst those caught holding Clevian debt were several prominent members of Loyalists and their industrial allies, whose insistent lobbying eventually brought the matter before the Cabinet. Although Kuroda was not a natural interventionist, the argument that Japan would lose standing if she did not act carried the day.

    A further obstacle remained: although in western Germany, Cleves was landlocked and on the face of it safe from Japanese attack. However, the Clevian capital, Düsseldorf, bordered on Gelre, Japan's oldest European ally. At first reluctant to collude in an attack on a neighbour, Gelre's monarch, King Arnold II, relented in the face of the need to preserve the small state's strong relationship with Japan.

    By late December the First European Corps was ready to sail from its Milanese base to launch the attack.


    End of year

    The close of the year saw Japan still at peace, but the final preparations for war had already concluded. As delegates for the Diet began to assemble the Loyalists could only hope that a successful European war could help to stem the rising liberal tide.

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