Oberth Republic

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Overview

The Oberth Republic is, technically speaking, the youngest of the interstellar powers, only recently being recognized by SolGov and other neighboring nations following a devastating war that once engulfed much of their sector of space and left the nation defeated and forced to sign a humiliating treaty. Now, despite concerted efforts to re-educate its populace, the weak governmental structure faces adversity from extremist groups from both sides of the political structure, and only holds tentative power in the face of an ongoing crisis. Despite the Republic's youth, however, Oberth itself holds a long history of imperial governance, and had at one point held a much larger territory than the Republic now holds. Some of the influence of that history has carried over into Republic culture, and the Republic's split along the political structure largely coincides with whether its citizens emphasize re-militarization or demilitarization of the state.

History

Colonization (2140)

Originally settled and established as part of a rapid colonization effort by SolGov, Neu-Königsberg was founded as the capital to a trio of habitable planets within a single solar system somewhat farther than usual from recognized SolGov space., In order to protect the remote colony, a larger than usual military presence was authorized; this came in the form of the destroyer SGS Ostfriesland. This vessel would be one of the last one to arrive in the system, as not too long afterward, Solgov would meet the Unathi, and the First Contact war would break out, cutting off the recently settled system from SolGov.

Birth of an Empire (2165-2170)

The Unathi quickly blockaded the fledgling planet, cutting off supplies and support from Earth and SolGov. In an attempt to keep civilian deaths low, a final transmission was sent to the colony ordering a full surrender to the invading Unathi. Commodore Friedrich Klaus, captain of the Ostfriesland and ranking military leader in the system, ignored this order, and galvanized and organized the once beleaguered population of the surrounded system, Commodore Klaus opened the stockpiles to the population, and began a rapid and hasty program of refitting the many civilian ships that littered the system following the initial colonization to auxiliary warships to be used against the approaching Unathi invasion force.
The invasion force, Expecting an unarmed and defeated colony ready for occupation, was savaged by the ramshackle fleet. By the time the blockade between the colony and SolGov weakened to the point that core ships were able to once again make contact with the colony, they were met with a self proclaimed nation, “The Imperial State of Oberth.” This “Empire” Not only successfully pushed back against the Unathi invaders, but also succeeded in capturing several other minor systems that had been claimed by the Unathi’s invasion.

Expanionist Era (2170-2290)

By 2170, the first contact war had ended, and SolGov eventually came to a mutual arrangement with the Unathi, though Oberth refused any sort of appeasement, and for a brief time, continued the war. SolGov had to finally step in and enforce a demilitarized zone between the two nations, putting an end to active hostilities between the two parties. Following the war, a period of rapid reconstruction began within the empire, and the coronation of their first “Volkskaiser”, That being the former Commodore, Friedrich Klaus. Through his leadership, the empire would expand at a rapid rate for 120 years, quickly developing into a militaristic, expansionist empire. Technological development would mirror this rapid expansion as Oberthan engineers became known for the quality, if somewhat complex nature, of their products. At the same time, the Oberthan military complex resulted in a high level of preparedness within the Oberthan empire. It has been said Imperial Oberth was, “Not a nation with an army, but an army with a nation.” Military service was both mandatory and honoured by their people, and their armies rapidly engulfed any neighbouring systems that caught their eye.

The Oberth-Unathi War (2290-2310)

As Oberth continued its wanton expansion into independent planetary nationstates, Several of them would form an ad hoc alliance to, not stop Oberth’s military expansion, but last long enough to bring in another major faction to help prevent it’s continued imperial conquests. While SolGov was initially dismissive of the plight of the alliance, public opinion quickly turned against SolGov politicians. The idea of an underdog fighting a major faction had encapsulated the civilian population. With public opinion placing pressure on them, SolGov turned on a planned alternative to direct military confrontation, that of lifting the ceasefire , and allowing the Unathi, who had been pushing to have it lifted for some time anyway, to deal with the empire. The initial assumption was that the Unathi would face losses, but would eventually win the conflict, Allowing SolGov to turn their attention to other things that they deemed much more important. These predictions turned out almost comically wrong. While the Unathi won a few victories early on, the Oberth response was swift and brutal, crushing the Unathi force, and driving them back all the way to Moghes, the Unathi home world.

Endgame

It wasn’t until the Unathi’s homeworld surrendered to the invading imperial fleet that SolGov realized the situation had fallen well out of their hands, and were forced to send a hastily assembled expeditionary fleet to rescue the Unathi. Following the first of many bloody battles, Their homeworld would be liberated and their political head reinstated. Following a bloody twenty year war, where SolGov suffered just as many losses as the Unathi and empire, they had reached the capital of the empire, Neu-Königsberg, the staunch defense of which only added to the increasingly horrendous losses on both sides of the conflict. Victory for SolGov and the Unathi was costly, and the two powers retaliated on Oberth by means of a brutal treaty that dismantled their empire and military, crippled their economy with reparations, and reorganized their government into the Oberth Republic, installing a SolGov-friendly puppet government to replace their defeated Volkskaiser.

Birth of the Republic and the Modern Day (2310-Present)

The Oberth Republic was born out of this treaty. Modest concessions were provided to the Republic to allow the fledgling nation to get back on its feet, though this has ultimately helped little. In the wake of the empire's defeat, the Republic has suffered grave problems: from hyperinflation to political extremism, including political murders and four attempted power seizures by contending paramilitaries.Today, the treaty-founded government only holds tentative power in the face of an ongoing sociological and political crisis. Political extremists from both sides of the political spectrum are slowly gathering power amidst both calls to return to their old militaristic ways, or to continue to radically demilitarize Oberthan society.

Society

Oberth and Outsiders

Despite the results of the war, the average Oberthan citizen typically gets along well with citizens of other nations, even those of SolGov; this goodwill, however, seems to end wherever the Unathi are involved. Widely hated and resented among Oberthans for the destruction of not only their cities, but even their apparent ways of life, many see the Unathi as The Hated Enemy, and as the nemesis of all Oberthans, though several elements within the democratic league have done their best to try and re-educate the populace and steer them away from this way of thinking, to little avail. Meanwhile, life is often quite tumultuous, to say the least in the republic. While reconstruction has done much to improve the living conditions of many Oberthans, constant social pressure to side with some type of political allegiance regardless of class is a major factor in emigration away from the republic.

Instability and Extremism

Oberthan society as a whole took a hit following the end of the conflict. Blinded by propaganda, the people of Oberth were unaware of the true course of the war and only realized the scope of the danger when Unathi and SolGov vessels filled the space over Neu-Königsberg. The unfortunate consequence is the propagation of a conspiracy theory that Oberth had been betrayed by high level government entities or corporate interests. Though this conspiracy has been repeatedly discounted, including by The Unathi Hegemony themselves, leaders of political extremist groups continue to use it as a foundation for their beliefs, and the humiliating treaty signed at the end of the war only further adds fuel to the fire.

Government

While initially an imperial power, following the war against both Solgov and the Unathi, the Oberthan empire was dissolved as part of the treaty and a Federal Constitutional Republic was established to prop the crippled nation back up. Headed by Reichspräsident, Paul von Ebert, The republic currently faces a tumultuous political situation as it’s people grow increasingly disillusioned with what they see as a nothing more than an occupational puppet government despite the withdrawal of all foreign military units two years before. While a large part of the population have learned from the mistakes of the past and have willingly decided to move on, much more than that have chosen to side with political extremist groups that either promise the re-establishment of the old imperial system, or bring about a stronger nation lead by “A union of the common people” Rather than a backstabbing politician or corporate head.

Among the many political parties vying for control, the two strongest among them are the Kommunistische Partei Oberth (often shortened to the KPO), and the ultra-nationalist Nationalistische Volkspartei Oberth (Or the NVO, respectively.) These two parties are often at odds with each other, Many of these confrontations escalate to the point of coming to blows, or at worse, street battles between each other or allied parties. From political banners, meetings, and leaflets, The streets are often awash with propaganda from both parties attempting to inflate each other's numbers and for those emigrating from the republic, is often the go-to excuse for their reason for leaving, Escalating political violence and an unreliable government.

The final thing of note is the Republic’s paradoxical approach when dealing with these volatile political parties. While the core Republican government has denounced both for their actions against peace and the current government, they often need to call on the support of right wing militias to deal with increasingly violent NVO acts, Ranging from labor strikes to attempted takeovers of local provinces. Though the NVO receives increasingly unwilling support from the ruling government, It has been rumored the KPO has received secret external support from Excelsior, in the form of weapons, training, and funds, though these claims remain simply unsubstantiated rumor

Military

Compared to the military complex previously on display by Imperial Oberth before the war, the numbers that currently make up the Oberth republic’s SDF can best be described as “humble”. With only enough ground units and armor to defend their own territory, and enough small and medium weight naval vessels to police their own borders, The republic’s military strength is only enough to deal with internal policing actions rather than external expansion.
Further to the point, for a nation that once boasted groundbreaking infantry weapons and tactics now finds those same weapons, as well as those used by it’s small navy, to be merely on par with the rest of the galaxy due to technological stagnation and reverse engineering of designs used during the war. Today, many of the weapons used during its Imperial age have been cleaned up for use by its SDF, and much of its last ditch weaponry retooled and cleared for use by police forces. By now, many of its once groundbreaking tactics have been thoroughly dissected and integrated among other starfaring nations, some even going as far to innovate on them.

Religion

While the Republic officially declared itself a secular nation following the end of the imperial age, a not insubstantial number of its citizens still practice Neo-Asaru, an evolution of the old earth 'being true to the 'Æsir'. Though at its core the religion still follows old earth customs of Heathenry and Paganism, it has clearly been adjusted to suit the old empire’s propaganda, encouraging that service to the then empire would not only be seen favorably in the eyes of the many gods of old, but also protections of those they would most hold dear. Though it has been lost to time when the empire originally twisted the original mythos of this old belief, many among the ultra-nationalistic parties of the republic often use it as a speaking point during their meetings, while the majority of Oberthan citizenry see it as nothing more then fragment of their nation’s story, a backwater faith with twisted notes of nationalism.

Technology

Despite the terrible toll the war brought upon the empire, as well as the stipulations brought upon the republic following it, infrastructure in both engineering and scientific research quickly returned to the nation. Though many of its weapons previously have since been rendered on par with the weapons of other nations following the conflict, it was clear Oberthan engineers had the technical expertise to work on amazing marvels, nowhere has this been more poignant then with the invention of the "Blitzshell" infiltration unit. The creation of this product resulted in a rather paradoxical adjustment top the treaty placed upon the empire, and allowed both the civilian and military sectors to research advanced and often technically superior products for future use in nations outside of Oberth, Though in the pursuit of this goal, republic scientists and engineers have fallen into an unfortunate trap, Overengineering.

Following the arrival and subsequent tour of their facility to a famous, yet unnamed, military engineer, It has been famously quoted that this engineer said of their new generation of weapons and inventions “You must have very clever soldiers.” The fact of the matter is that machines produced by Oberth today, while retaining an air of quality and expert machining, are often extremely overengineered. New generation firearms must be returned to quartermasters to properly see repairs, vehicles are nearly impossible to do any sort of field repairs without a dedicated engineer in among the crews, and certain technologies must be returned all the way back up the chain in order to ascertain what defects may be causing the malfunction, no matter how small.