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Emperopolis, the capital city of the Emperorlands
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Antarctic Republic of the Emperor's Lands
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The Conflict in the Emperorlands, colloquially known as the Emperorlands Crisis or Emperor Crisis was a conflict in the Emperorlands. It is the result of an internal struggle between several factions, most of whom are against the ruling monarch KingH10. On 25 May 2018 a military coup d'etat began. By 27 May, the coup forces have seized all government locations and the entire capital city of the Emperorlands, forcing KingH10 to seek exile in Dragonstone.
For several months, the people of the country have been dissatisfied with the direction of their country and the way their country managed to fade into irrelevance. KingH10 attempted to appease these sentiments by announcing his country would apply to join the Western Union in February 2018. However, this could only contain tensions for a short time - tensions started flaring against in April and May 2018 as KingH10 continued ruling with the same absolutist fist he had for years. He refused to allow for freedom of the media and refused to allow for completely democratic elections, resulting in a military plot to overthrow KingH10 and set up a republic.
The plot had already been weeks in planning when on 25 May 2018, around 9:17 PM, the military, supported by the people, blocked the bridges in the capital of the Emperorlands and tanks started marching towards the Royal Palace. The government offices were seized and several ministers put under arrest. KingH10 was forced to evacuate the capital city, and as a result of the rapid progress of the coup d'etat forces and their capture of the capital on 27 May, he fled to Dragonstone and Arthedain, which welcomed him with open arms and proclaimed support for the Emperorlands' government. The same support for the government of the Emperorlands was found in Acadia, with President Brant Esser insisting on intervening and on bringing the chaos to a halt.
The Western Union attempted to address the concerns of the people that revolted and urged for easing of tensions inside the Emperorlands, and called for both sides to restrain themselves and prevent any serious casualties. However, by 27 May it was already too late as 4 citizens have been killed and 17 wounded. KingH10, later that day, delivered a sharp statement from the Dragonstone capital, in which he condemned the forces seeking to bring down his reign. He insisted he would never give up, and called on the people of the country to resist this 'barbarous coup attempt'. However, the situation failed to calm down, and tensions rapidly escalated as several military members who didn't support the coup opened fire against the army factions in favour of the coup and attempted to stop the coup themselves - the coup by now had effectively become an uprising as the coup forces started giving out weapons to citizens supporting their cause.
Possible Antarctic Intervention
President Megg and Vice President Happyface were briefed about the events in the Emperorlands not long after they began. Hours later, after seeing the developments, they considered their country's options for the crisis, and the cabinet was divided as to how to approach it - some believed the situation could be used to rein Emperorlands into the USA sphere of influence again. Happyface was opposed to the Western Union and tried to convince the Emperorlands that the Western Union is not in support of the Emperorlands. The goal of these moves were to get the Emperorlands out of the Western Union and back in support for the United States of Antarctica.
Happyface was eager to prevent another Acadia from ever happening again, and was determined to prevent any more free republics from leaving the Free Republic Union. That is why at the Cabinet meeting on 28 May 2018, he proposed that the United States government back the newly emerged third side of the conflict in the Emperorlands, the Free Republicans, who believe that the Emperorlands should exit the Western Union and become even closer allies with the USA than ever before. However, Megg strongly disagreed with Happyface, and the Cabinet meeting ended in deadlock, with the automatic outcome being official USA neutrality.
The next day, Happyface delivered a private, non-government affiliated speech in which he condemned the crisis in the Emperorlands and also the Western Union, whom he blamed for 'facilitating and enabling the crisis'. This resulted in an outcry from WU Commission president Ludovica Carvilia, who lambasted Happyface's words as 'unrealistic and provocative'. An emergency Western Union Council meeting took place around 9 PM at which delegates from all 12 member states gathered. Council president Duan Xuegang invited all heads of state and/or government of the Western Union to come to Delphi, Acadia, the Western Union capital, on 31 May 2018, for urgent talks on how to respond to Happyface's threat and the war in the Emperorlands. However, an official response proved not to be necessary as Happyface was forced to pull back his remarks after Megg's outcry.
Tensions have rapidly escalated on the 30th of May as both sides, the pro-democracy rebels too, started committing massive killings against ordinary citizens. This gravely alarmed the international community, and the Western Union Commission later that day condemned the violence in the Emperorlands. However, their response was considered weak and insensitive, and President Megg at a press conference attempted to give a very sentimental and painful condemnation of the events in the Emperorlands, expressing her 'deep pain' for the fate of men, women and children in the war in the Emperorlands and encouraging "the international community to take action".
That's when Acadian president Brant Esser stepped in to blast the USA, saying that the United States "is only pretending to be for peace in order to manipulate the international community". Esser had a 2-hour phone call with United Provinces president Simon McClark, encouraging him to intervene in the Emperorlands and get the Western Union member states on his side. McClark refused, however, as he fearful of getting involved in yet another conflict, very mindful of the many wars of Robert Smith's presidency, and especially because he believed a conflict with the USA would not happen as neither side wants it.
Fighting continued escalating during the next 2 weeks. On 8 June the Western Union Council held an emergency meeting at which the 12 leaders agreed action must be taken to end hostilities in the Emperorlands. The Western Union then laid out a plan for a ceasefire in the Emperorlands, and it was proposed to the United Antarctic Nations the following day, passing unanimously. However, as of 10 June, the rebel side has shown no interest in negotiation, demanding the government be overthrown and a democratic republic be installed in its place. This frustrated the United States of Antarctica, leading even Happyface to reconsider his personal support for it.
Western Union Intervention
On 13 June 2018, as a result of the occupation of a large portion of the capital city, the Emperorlandic government finally called on its Western Union allies for help by triggering the Defense Article of the Treaty of Winsburg. There was no immediate response from the Western Union allies, but the following day the Western Union member states agreed to send in troops and assist the Emperorlandic government in fending off the rebellion. Additionally, WU Commission President Ludovica Carvilia stated that the Western Union Army might be deployed for the Emperorlands should the country ask that to be done.
Dragonstone was the first country in the Western Union to get involved in the Emperor Crisis, with the country originally providing asylum to the Emperorlandic monarch who fled the country and announcing their support of the Emperorlandic government. The monarch of the Emperorlands, KingH10, began petitioning the Dragonstonian government to take action and send troops, but the government turned him down, not wanting to escalate the already complicating situation by sending in foreign troops that could get into fights with the local population.
In order to protect the interests of the Western Union, Dragonstone sent two ships carrying a total of 1,000 Dragonstonian soldiers to the Emperorlands, with the ships being ordered to observe the situation from above the country to see if landing the soldiers was necessary or even possible, and to scout for possible landing sites.
On the 30th of May, as the situation began to escalate, with mass killings around the country, the Dragonstonian soldiers disembarked the ships and landed in the Emperorlands, quickly moving through the capital to secure the Dragonstonian embassy and the airport. The soldiers were welcomed with open arms by both the citizenry and the government, who were hoping to be relieved after being under siege for weeks. Around 300 Dragonstonian soldiers were ordered to secure the embassy and government districts while 700 were stationed at the airport to defend the vital supply line.
The Dragonstonian soldiers originally didn't face any encounters with the rebels, as they were stationed deep inside the city, but as the rebels began to move further into the city around mid June, gunfire was first exchanged between Emperorlandic soldiers backed by Dragonstonians soldiers and rebels at the airport on the 15th of June, which eventually escalated into a small battle. The short battle, which lasted only a few minutes, resulted in the deaths of 6 Emperorlandic soldiers and 17 rebels, while the Dragonstonian soldiers suffered no fatalities.
The United Provinces reacted by applauding Dragonstone for its involvement in the Emperorlandic peacekeeping mission, and called for an international intervention to assist the government in defeating US-sponsored rebels.
Club Penguin Conference
The Western Union and United States of Antarctica agreed to hold talks regarding the Emperorlands conflict in mid-June. On 23 June, these talks were arranged in Club Penguin and were attended by the WU Commission President, WU Council President, UP President, Acadian President, Dragonstone Prime Minister, Tropicalis President and Finipines President on one side and the US President and the US Secretary of State on the other side. The talks ended on 25 June and ultimately were successful as the US and the WU issued a joint statement calling for peace in the Emperorlands and in Antarctica. The two agreed on maximizing efforts to end the war in the Emperorlands as soon as possible and bring peace to the Emperorlandic people.
KingH10 was enraged upon hearing about the conference as he was not invited and the fate of his country was basically decided by other nations. President McClark, however, informed KingH10 that talks involving the Emperorlands might be held later in the summer.
Antarctic Republic of the Emperor's Lands
In July 2018, after two months of incessant fighting, the rebel organizations had enough with the state of the war and their lack of victories, as well as the lack of US support thanks to the Club Penguin Conference. They were hoping to end KingH10's reign and bring the Emperorlands back under the USA sphere of influence at any cost, but as defeat started proving inevitable they decided it would be best to salvage what they can and instead create their own secessionist republic with a USA-oriented foreign policy. On July 25, exactly two months since the fighting began, they proclaimed the creation of the Antarctic Republic of the Emperor's Lands (AREL), proclaiming "Freedom or Death, Booyah Forever!" as their slogan and proclaiming Megg, the President of the United States of Antarctica, as their liberator and savior.
Megg refused to comment on the creation of the AREL, and instead focused on 'bringing the conflict in the Emperorlands to an end'. All 12 Western Union members issued a joint statement on July 26 strongly condemning the creation of the AREL and proclaimed that 'Western efforts to restore the status quo ante bellum (state before the war) in the Emperorlands will not come to a halt'.
Vice President Happyface came to be embroiled in a large spat with President Megg over how to act in the Emperorlands conflict, with Megg being on the pro-peace side and Happyface being on the pro-war side. Happyface said that 'the United States must not back down with its intentions in the Emperorlands', and stated that the United States of Antarctica 'must give aid to the Antarctic Republic of the Emperor's Lands'. Later, he remarked that a failure to achieve set goals in the Emperorlands would mean his resignation. Megg's government was sharply divided over how to act on the situation in the Emperorlands, but after a couple of weeks of talks and bargaining with Vice President Happyface, President Megg convinced her government to agree to peace in the Emperorlands. VP Happyface privately called this a 'total humiliation', but he listened to what the President had to say and agreed to talks with the Western Union.
KingH10, in early August, said that any talks regarding the fate of the Emperorlands must be decided with himself at the negotiating table, and stated that he will 'not sell the sovereignty of his nation to any foreign entity, no matter who they might be'. Candvia's Prime Minister made a commitment to KingH10 that the Emperorlands would be restored to the state before the war and that the sovereignty of the Emperorlands will be protected by the Western Union nations.
The AREL made some minor advances during the rest of July and the beginning of August but gradually started declining in mid-August before being confined to several enclaves scattered across the eastern parts of the country. President Megg and President McClark agreed on peace talks involving the Emperorlands to be held in Shiverpool, and President Megg ultimately proclaimed that 'the United States had achieved its objectives', despite not completing any major objective and only succeeding in intimidating a smaller nation. President Megg then proclaimed that the 'United States is not a warmongering, imperialist nation, and never will be, especially not under my watch'.
Under the Shiverpool Agreement on 25 August, the Emperorlands would be returned to the state before the war - KingH10 would remain the monarch, the government would stay intact and the country would continue on its pro-WU trajectory. The United States ultimately got nothing out of the agreement other than a guarantee from KingH10 that the Emperorlands 'would retain close ties with the United States and assist where assistance is needed'. The AREL was disbanded the same day the Shiverpool Agreement was signed, ending the war in the Emperorlands.
- Relations between the Western Union and United States of Antarctica were not damaged at all thanks to Megg's diplomatic maneuvering. Happyface was heavily discredited in the eyes of the Western Union, but his reputation was completely restored several months later and his role in the conflict forgiven.