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Estonianzulu

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That white bit next to you is still colonized right? It looked for a moment like it was an independant nation.
 

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Where the Merlin soars

God bless Columbia... Land that I love.
With noble pride nurture, strengthen and guide her!
Where the Merlin soars and the white river roars,
Our nation Columbia shall stand forever more.
Forged from the love of liberty, in fires of hope and prayer.
With boundless faith in our destiny, we solemnly declare:
Side by side we stand, brothers ever we be in this land!
-- Democratic Republic of Columbia's National Anthem by T.F. Arthur



columbiaflagsm8xq.png


The national flags of the Democratic Republic of Columbia

columbiaflagaltsm6ug.png


On June 4th, 1848 the election campaign for the first president of Columbia began. The open system of the elections allowed for four different platforms to run, but in truth the fourth was never expected to gain any more then a hundred votes, if even that. The four candidates in the running were as follows; Robert Moore of the Liberal Party, Robe L. Wittley of the old Conservative Party, Jon Jaye (J.J.) Kalevala of the newly born Unionist, and Lee Brenard who claimed to represent the social issues of the common man.

Early on Robert Moore, was expected to win by a significant margin, not only due to his own and the party's immense popularity, but also due to the break in the Conservative Party that led to the formation of the Unionist's. Furthermore, the Liberal Party's issues of Anti-Military, Religious Pluralism, and maintaining the policy of the vote for true anglo citizens, while maintaining all other freedoms for immigrants and mixed blood and full blooded natives tended to properly reflect the attitude of the majority of eligiable voters. Though Columbia had won its freedom it was by no means a perfect democracy, with voting being restricted by wealth and ethnicity.

Robe L. Wittley, with his formidable pressence and regal baring put up a good fight early on the campaign, but his former aristocratic heritage harmed his chances, with both his Liberal and Unionist opponents dubbing him "Sir Wittley" whenever they met at public debates. Further, the populist leaning people of Columbia tended to vote issues over idealogy and Wittley's pro-military stance did not go over with a population that was proud of the fact that they had won their independence without firing a shot.

The month before the election was marred briefly when a wave of Anti-clericalism swept the small nation, leading to the firebombing of two churches. In both cases none of those responsible were ever convicted. Finally on March 4th, 1849 the election took place. In an overwhelming victory, the Liberal Party captured 86% of the seats in Parliament and effortlessly won the Presidential election, ushering Robert Moore in as the first President of the Democratic Republic of Columbia.


"We stand on the threshold to greatness and unlike Washington who had to first fight to free his country, I am proud to be able to say that we people of Columbia were able to win our Independence without needing to raise our arms, that reason prevailed and continues to prevail, for I now stand here, due to the mandate of the people, and not as from the whim of some distant monarch. From this day forward I promise to guide the people of Columbia to the freedom, equality and opportunity that we were previously denied."
An excerpt from Robert Moore's inaugural day speech.


In a transparent and expected move, Robert Moore appointed his long time supporter and friend Julian Zena Prime Minister, though in a rather unexpected decision Parliament selects the Conservative Eddison Radich to serve in the mostly advisory Vice Presidential position. Eager to return to less stressful engagements, Dr. McLaughlin hands over the reigns of government and returns to his role as mayor of Vancouver. With democracy running somewhat smoothly in Columbia, the United States of America officially recognizes the new government and opens an Embassy on March 12th.

Brief outline of the D.R.C.'s Government:

Head of State - President: Elected to a four year term by the direct representation of the voters. Anyone who has the right to vote may run for the office. Has the power to issue any orders that do not violate laws already existing, veto bills, dissolve Parliament and call for new elections. Handles foreign relations and acts as the head of the armed forces, but still needs Parliament to approve issues of war and peace.

Head of Government - Prime Minister: Appointed by the President. Forms a cabinet made up of members of several political parties. Presides over the Cabinet and the Parliament. Makes decisions on internal government.

Parliament: A single house system that is supposed to represent the overall will of the people. Legislative branch of government. Cabinet members, Prime Minister, and Vice President taken from its ranks. Seats held by different parties choosen by the people in elections. Creates, approves and denies laws. May hold session to Impeach President if abuse of power is demonstrated.

Vice President: Largely cermonial position. Serves as an advisor to the President. Is originally a member of Parliament, abandons his seat upon taking the position but may appoint replacement. Is chosen by Parliament, but once appointed may not be removed. Replaces President in case of incapacitation or death until elections can be held.


In an effort to further bolster international relations, President Robert Moore conducted an intensive trade of technologies and knowledge with the small European Nation of Krakow gaining insight into their techniques of army professionalism and muzzle loaded rifles. In February of 1850 the President also approved the establishment of a small Episcopalian mission on the island of Wake. In May, Vice President Radich met with the recently elected President of the United States of America, Martin Van Buren who had won under the Free-soil ticket, much to the anger of the increasingly weakening south. While some good came of the meeting, the desired defensive alliance failed to take hold, as America desired to make Great Britain an exception to the rule and Vice President Radich could not willingly accept those terms.

Throughout the year 1850 the conservative party struggled to keep itself together, but with its pro-british stance and old aristocratic leanings it found more and more of its members turning their back upon it, finding a place in the private sector or for some of the more radical within the Unionist's or Liberal Parties. In July the Conservative Party was officially at an end, for the most part Usurped by the Unionists, though some joined the overwhelmingly powerful Liberal Party.

The rise of the Unionist's began just after J.J. Kalevala's failure in the Presidential elections. Taking control of the party was the hard-lined and bigoted Walter F. Derby, who oddly enough teamed up with the clever Irishman Brady Fitz-James. Many were baffled by this alliance at first as Rep. Derby had previously refered to the Irish as a defective breed. Fitz-James also brought the youthful and charismatic Fulton Duff into politics, who took over one of the empty seats left by the distintigration of the Conservatives. With Brady Fitz-James' intelligence and political guile, Derby's respect and experience, and Fulton Duff's good looks and charm the Unionists soon began to establish a following, nearly capturing twenty percent of the Parliament seats. Whether a result of the bigoted Unionist party's growth or not, it is also around this time when immigration to Columbia began to come to a halt.


unionistpartyflag1ll.png

The Unionist Party Flag. The Unionist platform calls for closer ties with the USA, is mildly Anti-military, strongly against the merger of religion and state, and favors a strict stance of non-white Residency.

Despite successes on some fronts, the new democratic government of Columbia did have some small problems keeping crime under control, as the individualistic and armed former settlers were not used to answering to an established law. This was particularly true of the cities of Nelson and Kimberly, in which two large gangs formed. In December, the two gangs began to fight over territorial boundries and control of the small town of holsten. Order within the area broke down as the body count increased, uninvolved civilians becoming entangled in the conflict. The violence nearly grew out of control, though fortunately after two months order was eventually restored to the cities, though the gangs continued to maintain a strong influence, remaining a nagging problem for years to come.
 
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Machiavellian

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Sorry for the delay in the re-editing process, but up until today I was having some real problems with the site and couldn't get anything to work. Hope you enjoy and I'll try to get another update coming within a week.
 

unmerged(24320)

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Machiavellian said:
..Hope you enjoy and I'll try to get another update coming within a week.

yep, sure do enjoy this AAR! excellent! :cool:
 

coz1

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Hey Machiavellian - don't let this sit too long (yes, I know - I am one to talk. :rolleyes: )

I wonder - how long did it take you to find Krakow as a viable tech trade partner? Certainly not the first country I would have thought of, but it brought a chuckle to me as I thought about tech trading in Vickie much like bridefinding in CK (though easier in the former.)

You are doing a great job detailing the politics and machinations surrounding the formation and continued existance of Columbia. So what's happening now, eh? :D
 

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An excellent start! I also like the insight into the political machinations in setting Columbia up. Very, very plausible!
 

Machiavellian

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Thanks Catknight and Coz1, as well as all the other readers. I am trying to write up and update during this week. I've been very busy of late, but I have begun writing in small patches when I've had the time, I just need to put it all together. As far as finding Krakow as a tech partner, well I searched for countries that wouldn't be a threat to me later and that had tech I would like, unfortunately the leaders of Columbia have not always followed his plan. When I play I try to role play the people and leaders of the country, I created a few political parties for this AAR, but I have little control over what choices the people make. I often will flip a coin or roll some dice on an event choice. I do try to make things realistic and hope that when I'm done it can be seen as plausible. So I really appreciate the comment and compliment on such, I tried to do that with my Hungary AAR as well, but it got a little out there, what with a time traveling robot and a globe spanning Hungarian Empire, but.. heh.

Anyway, I'm rambling so readers, don't fear.. I'll try to get some new updates up to the 1850's. I've played up to that part thus far, then after that i'll need to play some more. I've decided that I want to make this AAR a surprise for me as well, so I'm not playing far ahead.
 

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The Rising Sun of Young Columbia​


Land of the Empire Builders, Land of the Golden West;
Conquered and held by free men, Fairest and the best.
On-ward and upward ever, Forward and on, and on;
Hail to thee, Land of the Heroes, My Columbia.

Land of the rose and sunshine, Land of the summer's breeze;
Laden with health and vigor, Fresh from the western seas.
Untainted by blood of martyrs, Land of the setting sun;
Hail to thee, Land of Promise, My Columbia.


In the March of 1851 the Columbian Liberal party, recently believed to be virtually unstoppable, began to show cracks. While Robert Moore was popular among the public, as well as his party, he was not trained to handle the balance of power necessary to keep all sides happy within such a large organization. Disagreements began to be common place within Parliament, and not only between the minority party, for fights broke out within the liberal party as well. In one particularly long session a fist fight errupted between the brash young Walter Andenburger and John Marlett, both Liberals, over issues they had regarding the recently constructed naval raiders. Rather then confront these problems directly, President Moore decided to ignore them, declaring openly "These things will work themselves out."

He was right. On April 1st, right before the widely debated Free Press amendment issue was to be brought before Parliament, Peter Albert of Seattle declared his departure from the Liberal Party and the formation of a new Party. After this declaration, a large number of seats, consisting of many of the younger.. less seasoned politicians, followed him. This was not enough to break the Liberal Party's majority, but it was a fearsome blow and with it The Young Columbia Party was born.


youngcol5cf.gif

The Young Columbia Party Flag. An off-shoot of the Liberal Party, shunning their anti-military stance, for a Jingoistic approach. Heavily influenced by the themes of Manifest Destiny.


It was no surprise after Peter Albert's declaration "Let all within our fair Republic know of this momentous day!" that the Free Press Amendment soon passed, despite the protests of some Unionist members, including W.F. Derby's, whose voice was easily the loudest. In truth, the Liberal Party and the Young Columbia Party were not much different, holding the same stance on almost all the issues, save one: The Young Columbian's wanted land. They desired a mighty militarty and claimed that it was Columbia's destiny to expand and to shine like a jewel to all the world. Unionist's and Liberal's alike made derisive comments about the members of the Young Columbia Party's age and saber rattling, often calling their leader the Napoleon of the West and it's representives his little Marshals.

In may, several laws also passed that increased funding to the national health care system, improving the previous dismal conditions in which many of the lower class were forced to endure. When on the July 6th of 1851 the undenialable right to a free and honest press was guaranteed in a Constitutional Amendment, several eager entrepreneurs all pounced setting up rival newspapers to challenge the government press agency for the minds and readership of the public. Of the many to spring up seemingly over night, Titus Swager's Vancouver Sun was clearly the most successful, being both mostly unbiased, informative and widely circulated. The last part was undoubtedly due to his creative employment of a squad of young, bicycle riding paper boys who were not only effective, but worked cheap.


Assassin Strikes at the heart of Unionist Party!
Yesterday afternoon an assassin killed radical Unionist Party head Walter F. Derby, age 61. Rep. Derby had just finished giving a speech on the need to increase residency laws for newly arrived immigrants and those of native blood. On his way to an early dinner, his assailent, Jubal Moytoy, blocked his path and fired three rounds from a colt revolver at near point blank range. Mr. Moytoy then attempted to flee, but was later aprehended by police. It is believed that Mr. Moytoy, who is of mixed blackfoot and french blood was enraged by the speech and what he called "Further attempts at injustice within an already corrupt government". Authorities have not yet disclosed where Mr. Moytoy is being held and have promised further investigation into the matter before his trial.

Funeral services for Walter Furgeson Derby are to be held on Saturday, beginning promptly at noon within St. George Cemetery in his hometown of Hazelton. Condolences can be sent to his family provided by the address below.
Article from the Vancouver Sun following the murder of Rep. Derby.

On October second of eighteen fifty-one the head of the Unionist Party was gunned down by a metis dock worker in seattle, just after giving a speech. The dock worker was driven to the drastic act by anger over his inability to vote, the Unionist's desire to further limit his freedoms, and a fair amount of alcohol. While he mourned outwardly, Brady Fitz-James was elated by this tragedy, as control of the party now fell to him and his pupil Fulton Duff. In addition, the Irishmman truly did not like W.F. Derby.

Late into the next month saw the beginning of infamous Crimean War. Russia announced this war by launching an attack against the Ottoman Empire and it's satillites Serbia, Moldavia and Wallachia in the early morning of November 27th, 1851. The British Empire soon became entangled in the conflict, siding with the Ottoman Empire against Russia. While the claim for war was over a dispute regarding control of the holy places in Jerusalem, as well as Istanbul/Constantinople itself, the real causes of the war were political, commercial, and strategic. Many thought France would also be drawn into this conflict, but with internal problems and colonial interests in the West, they managed to avoid the bloody war.

Soon after the United Kingdom joined in the Crimean War, it's diplomats who had for some time been rather quiet in regards to the DRC, began speaking up once more. Their embassy was expanded and many british diplomats began meeting with members of Parliament, urging them to consider an attack on the Russian Yukon. While the manipulative nature of the British was well known and guarded against, many of the Young Columbia Party saw this as a golden oppurtunity. Starting with Rep. Norman Risjord's famous Christmas speech "To tame the savage North." the idea that it was Columbia's right to claim and civilize the Yukon took hold in the Young Columbia Party and spread throughout the public forum. In the first Parliament session of 1852, Peter Albert's party was able to gain approval for the Volunteer army recruitment programs. While openly they spoke out against the need for the program members in both the Liberal and Unionist parties secretly supported the drive, fearing the growing military strength of the USA and the World spanning power of the British Empire.

It was no surprise that the volunteer program did not attract the interests of most white Columbians, who were for the most part proud of their non-violent reputation when compared to their neighbor countries, but oddly a large majority of the Metis and Cree population was attracted to the military recruitment drive. This was widely believed to be part of the minority classes attempt to gain recognition and perhaps greater liberties by serving the country.

Yet despite this historic movement to establish Columbia's first military force and Britain's continued attempts to Conjole Robert Moore and the Columbian Parliament to declare war on Russia, Columbia remained a quiet place. Content with peace for the moment, the populace ignored the possibility of its own war for the Yukon and instead turned its attention outward, eager to hear news of the very real war in the Crimea.
 
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coz1

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I vote the Young Columbia Party and say go into the Yukon. Time to spread your wings and introduce yourself to the world, is it not?
 

Machiavellian

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Well, first things first.. I need to build an army division. Secondly, we'll see if Young Columbia can win the upcoming election. Fortunately, I don't think the Crimean War will be ending anytime soon.

Sorry for the short update, but my time was limited and I wanted to at least get something new down to read. I'll try to play some more during the weekend and then update.
 

Machiavellian

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The Second Election

"People never lie so much as after a hunt, during a war or before an election." -- Otto von Bismarck


Unwilling to as of yet commit themselves to a real armed conflict, the people of Columbia enjoyed the almost comical notion that they had a military, when in truth less than two thousand men were in uniforms, with the majority of such being of Cree or Metis blood.

The ruling Liberal Party even welcomed jokes made about the Columbian military, or the lack thereof, via cartoons run in major newspapers such as the Toronto Globe and the Chicago Tribune. They reasoned such critism and mockery would weaken the Young Columbia movement should they make a bid in the nearing election.



May 14th, 1852
The New York Tribune, 7 cents

President Martin Van Buren dies in tragic carriage accident!
John Parker Hale to be sworn in as President

Also inside​

British capture Sevestapol! Russia Occupies and annexes Moldavia! Fighting between Russians and Ottoman Turks at a fevered pitch, French government offers to act as a neutral mediator - Russia stubbornly refuses. Austria's internal problems continue as rebels form breakaway states of Poland and Hungary.

In mid-may of 1852 the Free-soil President of the United States of America died in an accident on route to Philadelphia, The Democratic Republic of Columbia's government expressed its condolenses, but a few in the United States government took it the wrong way and relations became strained for some time. Despite the harsh words of a few Northern Senators, Columbia's government hoped to better relations under the Presidency of John P. Hale.

Yet following Hale's swearing in, the default US President became strikingly distant, refusing to meet with anyone outside his personal cabinet, snubbing foriegn ambassadors and the American Press alike. At first many believed Hale's "Closed door" policy was merely due to his mourning of fellow New Yorker and friend, Van Buren, but when this policy continued rumors and speculation began to fly. The real reason became clear when a scandal broke and US President John P. Hale was charged with corruption, misconduct of office, and laundering of funds into private accounts. Hale was soon brought before the House of Representives for Impeachment and quickly found guilty.


jphale5rj.jpg

The disgraced J.P. Hale

The troubling news caused riots to brake out throughout the United States as the people demanded a new election. The parties however were unwilling to break on their schedualed campaigns - fortunately a compromise was proposed by Leander Babcock, a NY Democrat of the thirty-second Congress. The Compromise was for an election to be held in which the winner would assume the full responsibilites of President, but would only continue to serve out the rest of Van Buren's elected term. This proposal was reluctantly agreed upon and a rushed election was held in the United States between Franklin Pierce, a democrat, and Winfield Scott the Whig candidate. The Free-soil party refused to run anyone, humiliated and shamed by the J.P. Hale scandal.

During this time Columbia had its own share of problems. The trouble in the United States government caused worries to grow concerning the stability of Columbia's southeastern border. In addition to such concerns, Columbia suffered a loss of international prestige when Moore's government opened diplomatic negotiations with Hungary, in which technology secrets were exchanged. Hungary was considered by most of the world to be unrecognized and illegitimate. President Moore's biting response to the Austrian ambassador's complaints did not aid in smoothing the matter over either.

On July 15th, 1852 as the British began to make gains in Kerch against the Russians, Columbia deployed the first of its trained military in small parades that would lead up to the border forts to which they were assigned. The mostly Cree 1st infantry regulars marched through Hazelton to Fort Stewart on the Southwestern border with the Russian Yukon territories. The Cree were under the commander of the disgraced, Austrian trained General Zabala. But another sore point in Columbia-Austrian relations. The other division was the 1st Columbian Cavalry led by the deeply religious General Duran. Jules Odo Duran, a French Catholic was extensively trained in the school of Firepower and thought of commanding the mostly Metis blooded Hussar troop as a challenge. He led his force with much pomp to Fort Tulsequah which lay sixty miles south of Atlin in the far north.



contestedseat3ol.jpg

The artist shows the Whig victory in the 1852 provisional presidential contest. At left, Whig candidate Winfield Scott, in military uniform, pulls the "Presidential Chair" out from under Democratic nominee Franklin Pierce (also in military dress). Pierce, having fallen to the floor, exclaims, "Look out there! what you bout General? do you want to Knock a fellers brains out?" Scott replies, "Sorry to disappoint you Pierce; but "the people" wish "me," to take "this" chair."


The people of America narrowly selected the imposing general Winfield Scott to fill in as President on september 4th, 1852. Winfield Scott, who was renowned for his honor and generosity told an eager press that he was detirmined to restore the rightful integrity to the most noble office. From the capital in Victoria, Columbian President Robert Moore expressed his hope that Winfield Scott would lift the United States out of its troubled waters. The United States government issued no reply to the comment.

October 1st brought about a minor crash in the stock market, causing an economic downturn for Columbia's elite, but by december the economy began to recover. It is also during these early winter months that Greece surrenders to the Ottoman Empire, ceding the provinces of Lamia and Mesolongion, and Louis Napoleon is "elected" Emperor of France. By Christmas, Austria continues to suffer internal problems, with armed rebels taking control in the Ukraine. When pressed by a reporter from Seattle's Columbia Gazette President Moore could only say "Good".

Other then the February 28th shift to a silver currency standard, the beginnings of 1853 saw little that was newsworthy, even in the Crimean conflict, things had begun to reach a standstill, with neither side willing to advance into danger. Yet by March, the December 4th Presidential campaign got into action when both the Unionist and Young Columbia Party announced they would be running candidates to challenge the Liberal Party's hold.

Robert Moore, despite some challenge within his own party insisted he would campaign for his second term. Speculated to be the greatest challenge to the Liberal Party, the Young Columbia Party did not run Peter Albert as many expected. Instead, the thick bodied and heavily bearded Albert championed his friend and long time Politician Esmond Wright for the party nomination, which he effortlessly won. From the Unionists Fulton Duff led the charge, focusing on a Platform that was pro-british and highly secular. While the outspoken Lee Brenard also ran against Moore on a Social reform platform, he was not viewed as a real challenger, as he had no party and sought to contest only the Presidency.

The now famous October 4th debate is often looked to as the turning point of the election campaign. During the course of the townhall style debate the military issue took center stage, with the issue of defense becoming highly electrified. While Robert Moore and Fulton Duff made talk about using diplomacy and world opinion to maintain Columbian independance, the for the most unestablished Rep. Wright made a stirring speech in which he made calls for a strong military not only to protect from external threats, but from internal threats as well, making references to the USA's recent presidential troubles. He also champions the bravery of the British soldiers dying in a war against "Russian Autocracy and the evils of the Barbarian east".

Though the speech had a mixed response, with the pacifism group Open hands of Columbia holding rallies in Donald, Vernon, and Nelson. Much of the population began to lean towards Esmond Wright and Young Columbia's Jingoistic stance. On the Sunday of December 2nd, Esmond Wright is believed to have crushed Robert Moore's chance of re-election when his hired supporters trap Moore with several questions that force the President to answer in a pro-military fashion at a seattle Liberal Party rally.


esmondwright2su.jpg

Esmond Wright, 2nd President of Columbia


The following Tuesday, December 4th 1853 witnesses Robert Moore removed from power as the Young Columbia Party steals a majority of the seats from the Liberals. While the Unionists made some minor gains as well, it was clearly the Young Columbia Party's day to celebrate. In a well received acceptance speech, President-elect Esmond Wright talks of the Tsars wicked Imperialism and the need to stop it, as well as making several poetic references of proud Columbia marching to its rightful place under the sun and taking its first steps towards spreading its vision of prosperity and independence to the oppressed corners of the world.

From the homes of thousands throughout the old Oregon territory the flags of both Columbia and the Young Columbia Party were flown in a show of support. Without fuss, Robert Moore made it clear that he would step down jokingly saying to one reporter that He was happy that the people can make the wrong decision and elect someone else.



youngcol5cf.gif
 
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Great update, Machiavellian!

:D
 

coz1

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Things seem to be a bit hairy right now. Still talking up animosity with the Russians, while relations with the BWB and potentially even the US begin to boil. I sure hope you don't get ganged up on. I think it's alliance time if you don't have one yet, preferably with the Queen. (Can't recall if this has already happened.)

I like the way you get much of the world info out in the news clippings. Quick and easy, but also very informative. Nice. :cool:
 

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I think we're looking at a rumble with the Bear, folks. Maybe you should change the title to '70 - 40' or ....!' (Or whatever Pt Barrow's latitude is.)
 

Machiavellian

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The next update is called Yukon ho! in tribute to that great comic strip Calvin and Hobbes and a rumble with the big bear Ivan is indeed in the future. I appreciate the feedback, as any comments or suggestions are always appreciated.

I forgot to include a screenshot in the last update so I am going to place it here. It's a fairly important one, because it details much of the area the future update will be centered around.

my.php
 

Machiavellian

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Yukon Ho!

This is the law of the Yukon, and ever she makes it plain:
"Send not your foolish and feeble; send me your strong and your sane --
Strong for the red rage of battle; sane for I harry them sore;
Send me men girt for the combat, men who are grit to the core;
Swift as the panther in triumph, fierce as the bear in defeat,
Sired of a bulldog parent, steeled in the furnace heat.
Send me the best of your breeding, lend me your chosen ones;
Them will I take to my bosom, them will I call my sons;
Them will I gild with my treasure, them will I glut with my meat;
But the others -- the misfits, the failures -- I trample under my feet.
Dissolute, damned and despairful, crippled and palsied and slain,
Ye would send me the spawn of your gutters -- Go! take back your spawn again.
An excerpt from The Law of the Yukon by Robert W. Service


Since taking the oath of office President Wright championed the right of Columbia to the lands dominated by the Yukon river. In a speech at the ribbon cutting ceremony of the Robert Gray Military Academy at Olympia, the somber appearing President brought the gathered public to their feet in applause when he proclaimed "The land south of the arctic circle, stands justly and rightfully within Columbia's sphere of influence. The lies of a scepter wielding tyrannt do not and will not change that truth!".

Shortly after the February 9th speech, President Wright sent his Vice-President Bruce Catton, a member of the crumbling Liberal Party, with one last offer to Saint Petersburg. While Catton was not pleased with the assignment, knowing very well that he might get stranded in Russia, he later remarked that had he not journied to visit Tsar Nicholas I he would never have discovered the works of Nikolai Gogol. Taras Bulba was said to have become Catton's favorite book.

The offer he presented was simple; Columbia offered to buy the whole of Russia's North American territories for the sum of $3,600,000 - about one cent per acre. In truth Columbia did not really have the capacity to pay for the deal, but were willing to take out a loan if necessary. The President did not really expect Russia to accept. Tsar Nicholas rejected the terms outright, decrying Columbia as "foolish cubs, who best run at the Russian bear's growl, lest they feel its teeth." Vice-President Catton did not waste his breath in trying to get the Russian autocrat to reconsider and returned to Vancouver Island. On March 2nd, 1854 the Democratic Republic of Columbia entered the Crimean War. Parliament cited many of Britains reasons for war with Russia, as well as adding a few new causes including violation of Columbia's national border. President Wright soon learned that China and Bukkhara had pledged to aid Russia in this war and sought to bolster the public by making Russia seem all the more barbaric due to its association with 'the savage east'.


"Russians? They are not worth three white faced Columbian men. I dare say this war will be over before the autumn harvest comes in." -- Columbian Prime Minister Peter Albert
Young Columbia Party head and Prime Minister Peter Albert when asked his feelings on the Russians, March 4th - 1854.


As dawn's light shined upon the fresh snow that coated the capital of Russian-America on March 13th, General Duran and his cavalry penetrated the defenses of New Archangel (also being called Sitka at the time) and forced the surrender of over half the surprised garrison in the initial attack. While it would take until April 25th before General Duran and his cavalry could safely move from the captured territory, most looked at the initial success as a measure of how the war would continue.

Further south Russian forces in Wrangel stared defiantly across the border at the 1st Infantry corps stationed at Fort Stewart. General Zabala is reported to have repeatedly asked for orders to attack, but the fledgeling war department and President Wright denied him, instructing him to hold his ground. It was well known that the Polish born Zabala hated the Rus like he hated no others.

By late August General Duran had directed his Cavalry troop north from Sitka to capture the mostly undefended forts, towns and trading posts of Seward and Skagway with the Imperial Russian military making little attempt to halt his stunning progress. Drawing on the successes of General Duran and his Metis Cavalry troop, the war department issued several war posters eager to gain new recruits as well as war bond investors.



boyarposter9wa.jpg

One of several posters issued during the Crimean War portraying Russians in a unfavorable light.


Despite the war, life continued on as normal for most citizens of Columbia, though those who relied on the sea for their livelihood had to be more cautious, with warnings of Russian or Chinese pirates. Few had much faith in the effectiveness of Admiral Lersundi of Columbia and his two man-o-war fleet. In International news on November 4th, 1854 the United States of America finally sought to put its troubled Van Buren administration behind it. The Northern states came out strong, electing John C. Frémont of the newly formed Republican party over his opponents James Buchanan of the Democrats and Millard Fillmore of the nativist Know-Nothing party.

Frémont was looked upon as a man with who the Columbian government could get along with an was soon courted by the diplomatic core. President Wright attended Frémont's presidential address in Washington, D.C. and is reported to have had a secret meeting with the United States President, as well as Winfield Scott, in which he pledged his support for Frémont's abolitionist agenda, as well as the former Lt. Colonel's hints of a second Mexican-American war. President Esmond Wright returned to Victoria with a strengthened relationship and understanding in regards to the USA.


fremont6sa.jpg

John C. Frémont, 15th President of the United States

March 1st, 1855 saw the end of China's involvement in its war against Columbia when President Wright and Prime Minister Albert signed a treaty brought by an ambassador from the eastern nation three days earlier. Its signing would bring the return of the status quo. Though Russia's other ally Bukkara was still technically at war with Columbia, most Columbians did not even know where Bukkara was located. General Duran's continued success in the undefended north began to grate on the patience of the blood thirsty Zabala who began making 'scouting' missions over the border, despite orders.

April 10th, 1855 witnessed perhaps the first true battle of the war on Columbia's part when the elderly Admiral Lersundi was ambushed by a contingent of the Russian navy. The Russian Man-o-War's Prince Gustav and the Nord Adler, accompanied by two clipper convoys attacked without abandon, discharging the full weight of their armaments into the stunned admiral's 'fleet'. To his credit, Admiral Lersundi quickly turned his ships about and returned fire - putting up an honorable fight, despite being forced to retreat to port after being harassed into may. Both the Prince Gustav and the Nord Adler were sunk, though Lersundi's ship RCS Oregon was heavily damaged and his companion ship the RCS Grundi was destroyed. While Lersundi would return to destroy the remainder of the Russian North Pacific fleet in June, he tragically would die in the combat when the Oregon went down after being rammed between two damaged Russian vessels.

In late May a second infantry division was added to Zabala's command at Fort Stewart, though the impatient general was never able to appreciate them, for that very same evening he was killed when one of his scouting patrols was ambushed by Russian soldiers hiding beneath the deep snow. The General was bayoneted thrice in the stomach and died at Fort Stewart the next morning. Zabala was quietly replaced by a young rising star out of Robert Gray Military Academy by the name of Keith Rupert. Promoted to the rank of Colonel, Rupert upon arriving at Fort Stewart had a letter sent across the border to his Russian counterpart, Polkovnik Muraviev-Karoky. The minor count was a bitter man who thought that he deserved better than to watch over several thousand aleutian fisherman, however he loyally served Czar Nicholas I, and had a cannon fired in the direction of Fort Stewart after ripping up the notice demanding his surrender.


..the aspens, white spruces and willows are more familiar to me now then the bodies of many of the ladies I have laid with in my days. We have seen more Caribou than the enemy, and our only victims for the last several months were a small band of Athabaskan who were strangely loyal to the Tsar. The good General says that the Russians are defeated, for which I am glad. While I appreciate the savage beauty of this Yukon, I could due without the ceaseless cold and the nightly attacks from wolves and the great brown bears of this land. For truth, these Russian bears have caused more damage to our unit then the strangely absent Russian man.
From the Journal of Leon Sakamataynew, staff sergeant of the 1st Columbia Cavalry -- Dated April 19th, 1855


With a welcome temperture of fifty-three degrees Fahrenheit, July 6th 1855 saw an attack on the last Russian outpost on North American soil. Colonel Rupert boldly led two divisions of infantry against the entrenched forces of the Rus at the Wrangel border fortress. Unlike the early encounters, these Russians were unwilling to break and despite the various attacks by Colonel Rupert, the Imperial soldiers held their ground and killed more in one day then had been killed in all the fighting thus far. Even General Duran's cavalry reinforcement failed to break the lines of the Russian Colonel Muraviev-Karoky. For months the fighting continued in and around Wrangel, but its cost was little land and more of Columbia's blood. The Rus were simply too well trained and too deeply entrenched. Furthermore it was soon realized that the Russians had better equipment as well and count Muraviev was a skilled defensive commander. He realized he did not need to advance and could merely hold his ground till the war was ended. Columbia could not match Russia in an extended war.

On August 19th, the same day the United States declared war on Mexico for the second time in its history, a peace offer asking for the territory south of 60° latitude. The Russian Tsar refused to answer. The true reason was that the Tsar was dying and the treaty never reached his eyes or the eyes of his successor, Alexander II.

By November 2nd, it became clear to even the stubborn headed members of the war department that the Russians would not be broken from Wrangel. Duran and Rupert were ordered to retreat, granting victory to the Russian count. The Atlin Oracle was particularly unkind to the brave Columbian soldiers and their leaders. Worried that this war, which had passed more then one harvest already, was becoming a drain on the economy, President Wright and Prime Minister Albert set about devising a new strategy for the coming year.

The plan devised an attack on the Russian east by Colonel Rupert, while Lt. General Duran would seek to contain Muraviev-Karoky at Wrangel. At the same time, another peace offer would be offered with increasingly climbing demands, hoping that the Russians would see the folly in refusing too often.


"You make demands of me and my subjects when we are clearly in mourning. You started this war. Yet you ask of us land? We know of your defeats. We know of Polkovnik Muraviev-Karoky's triumph over the rabble you call an army. You speak like the British, but you do not fight like them. Russia will give you something to mourn."
The strangely distant words of Tsar Alexander II to the Diplomat of Columbia, Alfred Trest. - February 1856


The son of Czar Nicholas' words hinted at a most devious plot, that unfortunately the government of Columbia never detected. On April 23rd, 1856 the Presidential and Vice Presidential carriages were hit by firebombs when a gang of immigrant georgians burst through security at the Independence day parade. All but one of the Russian employed assassins were caught or killed and under heavy questioning it was discovered that they had been employed by a fisherman who sailed out of Wrangel. A day of celebration was turned into one of tears, as Columbia felt the full weight of Alexander's hateful words.

Bruce Catton and his son Ken Catton died in the hospital, though Vice President Catton's wife survived with only minor burns. The President and his family also survived, but not without injury. The Presidents wife Valerie lost an eye when the carriage splintered, while the President broke his hip and dislocated two fingers.

Prime Minister Albert took over while the President recovered in the Hospital, but could do little to strike back at Russia despite the people now clamouring for revenge. As of yet the required ships necessary to transport an army to the east were not ready. The construction of the ships was estimated for the beginnings of 1857, though Peter Albert hounded them to get them built quicker. Matters only got worse when news came in early August that the Crimean war had ended, with Russia giving up some unimportant land in the east to the British and Ottomans. A total of four provinces and none with recognizable names. Practically pulling his beard out, Peter Albert almost signed an alliance pact with Mexico until he was stopped by the recovering Esmond Wright and instructed to read the fine print, which in no small terms demanded that Columbia come to Mexico's aid against the United States of America. President Wright and Peter Albert respectfully declined Mexico's offer.

Finally, on November 28th 1856 the transport ships are ready for service. Joined with the repaired Oregon and the newly constructed Man-o-War RCS McLaughlin, the fleet is placed under the commander of Neil Fitz-James, a cool-headed former privateer and second cousin to Brady Fitz-James. On January 2nd, 1857 Colonel Rupert and the 1st infantry Corp land at the Russian Kuril Islands, beginning the campaign to force a peace via attacks on the east.


The Vancouver Sun, 4 cents
February 26, 1857 edition

Colonel Rupert's stunning victories in the east!

With Kuril Islands under Columbia's control, Colonel goes on to occupy Petropaviovsk, defeating Russian partisans.

Mexico goes into civil war! - while still at war with US.
Eyewitness says Mexico's military in chaos.


Despite successes in the east, Alexander II still refused to sign a peace in April of 1857. While the army was not wantonly cruel in its attacks, it was not particularly kind either. Stealing food from villages throughout the islands when desired and often refusing to give quarter to the Russian partisans who rose against them. On May 9th, Admiral Fitz-James ambushed and destroyed a small Russian fleet in the Kuril Trench in a series of battles that lasted four days. Later that month, the nation of Columbia once more mourned the death of one of its leaders when John McLaughlin passed away on the 23rd of May, 1857. His funeral was widely attended, with a moving eulogy delivered by both his son Thomas and the former President Robert Moore.

Across the sea, on June 6th, Colonel Rupert led his men into battle against twelve thousand cossacks in the Manchu land of Volskoje, near the Jijikose hills. While at first the experienced Cree infantry seemed to be on the verge of victory, the Cossacks were soon reinforced by another ten thousand horsemen. Fearing that he would be trapped and killed in the distant russian east, Rupert ordered his men to retreat and sent scouts out to reaccess his position. By July 22nd, Colonel Rupert realized that massive Russian armies were pouring in from the west, trying to trap him in the rugged badlands. With a desperate attack on a contingent of Russian infantry south of Magadan, the Colonel and the shattered remains of his corps entered the port and joined up with Admiral Fitz-James fleet. The attack on the Russian east was over.

With luck however, Czar Alexander II did not learn of this defeat in time and on September 8th, 1857 an uneasy peace was signed between the Russian Empire and Columbia. The territories of Skagway, Sitka, Seward, Dutch Harbour, and Fort Yukon would become part of Columbia in exchange for peace. In addition, Columbia was forced to acknowledge Russia's rights to Wrangel and allow free access to all merchant vessels to its port.

Though both nations were not entirely happy with the signed peace and animosity festered between the two nations, the citizens of the two countries were eager for an end to war and happily sought to return to peace.



columbia18575rc.jpg
 
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coz1

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Wow, that was thrilling. Interesting that you ended up getting the better of the Russians (just slightly) after the peace of the Crimean War. Nice job. And if I read that correctly, it appears the Unionists are in the lead by a wide margin. Now remind me of this - do the Unonists wish to join with the US or the UK? Either way, I imagine it is not what you are hoping for. ;) Great update!!
 

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Originally the Unionists wanted to remain part of Great Britain, however I think that part of their agenda has been abandoned. Politically the Unionists are currently Anti-military, favor a secularized religion, are protectionist in their trade policy, and desire heavier restrictions on the minority populations - residence. I think the factors which have the Unionists high in the polls is that voting population is only those who are Anglo-ized and have wealth, which is a very small percentage of the population. With the gaining of more native american's into the population and the cost of the war, I think they have turned back to anti-military. I haven't played ahead yet, but seeing as its snowing pretty bad I may do that now.
 

coz1

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Thanks for the clarification. I imagine you would rather sitck with the young ones at this juncture.

I haven't played ahead yet, but seeing as its snowing pretty bad I may do that now.
Good luck digging out. Let's just say I don't miss my Chicago days come this time of year. ;)