on a galactic scale
Flag of the Vendian Empire
|Headquarters||Imperial Palace, Shallowmarine, Crystaldeep, Kelosian System|
|Membership||27 provinces, sixteen offworld colonies|
|Organization Head||Krystina II|
|Formation|| as imperial union of feudal states:|
Month 5 18868
The most ancient of the nations on Crystaldeep, the Vendian Empire is the merger of the three strongest kingdoms on the continent of Fresca during Crystaldeep's feudal era.
In early 18,865 GST (29795-07 DT), the royal houses of Engel, Rosencra and the Theocracy of Lamnia, tiring of war after pointless war between their three nations, agreed, with the accession of Vitora I to the Engelian throne, to unite their three kingdoms under her crown, the Engelian royal family, through thousands of years of intermarriage, conquest and inbreeding, being the inheritors to the Rosencran and Lamnian thrones as well, the first Concordat of Shallowmarine in the fifth month 18,868 (29801-01 DT) formalizing this arrangement as the Vendian Empire, the Empire continuing to be governed by this and successive Concordats to this day.
The Empire swiftly went on to establish colonies on the continents of North and South Astion, the Imperial colonies on the western coast of North Astion acheiving independence as the United Provinces of the West(UPW), during the War of Western Independence—or, according to most Vendians, the War of Western Aggression—the Empire and the UPW destined to clash again, first, during the First Astionian Conflict(19,101-19,103 GST), provoked when the Westies attempted to forcibly annex the newly-independent South Astonian nations, and then, fifty years later, during the Second Astonian Conflict, when the UPW leadership attempted to crush their southern and eastern provinces after they objected to the Western government's policies of slavery, imperialism, and economic discrimination.
This bloody five-year conflict resulted in an especially humiliating and bitter defeat for the Western forces at the hands of Imperial troops and the military of what was to become the United North Astion Trade Agreement(UNATA), a defeat which has embittered the UPW towards the Vendian Empire to this day.
The UPW's collaboration with the Arrqs during the Arrq Invasion cemented hatreds between the Western government and the Crown, esepcially considering the bulk of Kelosian losses during that war—including their greatest general, Calvin Rannella— came from the ranks of the Vendian Imperial Armed Forces, hatred that even both nations joining the Congress of Crystaldeep and subsequently securing seats on the Commission has not ameliorated in the least.
Western-Vendian hatred has been inflamed in recent years, due to the Rannella movement, the Jules family continuing to be a politically and economic powerful family in the UPW, with the youngest brother of Monav Jules—Webb Jules' uncle— JulesCorp CEO Ragev Jules, currently serving his second four-year term as President of the UPW, his first cousin, Nittion "Nit" Gangreen, representing the UPW on the Crystaldeep Commission.
The Imperial government is governed by the 22,000 GST Concordat of Shallowmarine, which establishes, amongst other things, extensive civil liberties and a criminal code which is considered draconian by UNATA and Congressional standards.
It officially outlaws xenophobia and discrimination, making the use of so-called "hate speech" punishable by death should it lead to the commission of a felony. The Empire is only one of two nations on Crystaldeep which officially outlaw xenophobia and discrimination, the Republic of Curiar being the other.
The Concordat provides for vritually unlimited freedom of speech and expression, along with a freedom from religion which was engrained in traditional Engalan and Rosencran society—owing both to millenia of religious wars with the Lamnians and bad expiriences with religous extremists in both societies—resulting in a secular, but very highly tolerant society.
This tolerance extending not just to differences of culture, religion, race, gender and sexuality, but to differences in species as well, with the cities of Oshfar, Paradais, Rannel and the Imperial capital of Shallowmarine being almost as cosmopolitian as Benz City itself.
The Concordat treats all felonies as capital offenses, the Crown's position on this being that such blatant contempt for the law is against the best interests of the Crown and its subjects and encourages attacks against its sovreignty by its sworn enemies, satisfying the definition of high treason as set forth not just by the Concordat, but by both the UNATA Constitution and the Congressional Charter as well.
Included in the list of felonies are corruption(malfeasance) in office, bribery, extortion, blackmail, rape, murder, treason, terrorism, regicide, crimes against sentience, crimes against the Kelosian people, habitual unsafe operation of a vehicle, operation of a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, behavior contributing to the commission of a felony, child pornography, pedophilia and, of course, high treason, either against the Crown or Congress.
Other crimes are considered misdemeanors and, as such, are punished by summary justice dispensed by Imperial police officials, this summary punishment ranging from fines to banishment, the latter involving the offender being implanted with a chip causing him to suffer blinding headaches should he re-enter Vendian territory.
The Imperial HouseEdit
At the heart of the Empire and the Imperial House is the Empress (Emperor), a hereditary position normally passing from sovreign to eldest child, though the current reigning Emperor/Empress can choose to pass the crown to his consort, should either the union be childless or the current sovreign(and his Prime Minister)feels all other potential successors are unfit to rule.
The Emperor is head of state, chief executive, commander in chief of the Armed Forces—a role which many Emperors have taken to heart over the millenia, with Krystina I taking the field against the Arrqs following Rannella's death in the Battle Of the Eastern Front—chief diplomat, final legislative authority and final court of appeal.
The current Empress, Krystina II, a former admiral in the Stellar Corps during the Rannellan Conflict, has proven herself an especially adept and able leader, popular with her people and a terror to their enemies, skillfully representing Vendian interests on the Crystaldeep Commission.
The Other Members Of the Imperial HouseEdit
All members of the House of Vendi other than the Emperor hold the title of Duke, with the Emperor's consort and eldest child both holding the title of Crown Duke/Duchess, and the Emperor's other children holding the title of Grand Duke.
Aside from holding seats in the Noble Assembly, the duties of the members of the Imperial House are largely ceremonial, supplemented with constant training to prepare them for accession to the throne.
Many of the members of the Imperial House also serve in either the Imperial Armed Forces or the Stellar Corps.
The Advisory CouncilEdit
The heads of the government departments, the Lord High Chancellor and the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces all occupy seats on the Advisory Council, charged with advising the Emperor in matters of state.
The head of the Advisory Council and (of Parliment) is the Prime Minister, who serves as chief executive when the Emperor is incapcitated, underage or otherwise unavailable.
Parliment is the Vendian legislative branch, charged with drafting and passing legislation. A bicameral body, Parliment is subdivided into the Noble Assembly and the Common Assembly.
The Noble AssemblyEdit
The Noble Assembly is drawn from all members of the Vendian nobility, including all members of the Imperial House. The upper house of Parliment, the Noble Assembly's duties mainly entail reviewing legislation passed by the Common Assembly and serving as a court of appeals higher than the Imperial Chancery.
The Common AssemblyEdit
The Common Assembly is where all the major work of Parliment is accomplished. Consisting of 448 commoners elected by the constituents of their respective districts in the Vendian Empire and the offworld colonies, the Common Assembly drafts legislation, draws up the Imperial budget, determines the Imperial line of succession and whether or not the current sovereign is fit to rule.
Amongst the powers of the Common Assembly is the right to veto any Imperial decree, at any time, subject to the Concordat and the decisions of the Chancery, this veto being subject to being overriden by the Noble Assembly, though this override has rarely been exercised in Vendian history.
The Prime MinisterEdit
The Prime Minister, elected by a majority of the Common Assembly, in addition to presiding over sessions of Parliment and the Advisory Council, also serves as Imperial Regent during times when the Emperor is either unavailable or incapacitated and speaks for the whole of Parliment when it is not in session.
Finally, the Prime Minister serves as the prosecutor for the Crown in all cases before Chancery.
The Imperial ChanceryEdit
The Imperial Chancery is the Vendian high court, charged with trying high crimes against the Empire, including cases of high treason, as well as serving as the initial court of appeal for all cases originiating from the provincial and colonial magistrates.
Chancery consists of eleven Chancellors, five appointed by the Common Assembly, five appointed by the Noble Assembly and the Lord High Chancellor—who presides over Chancery—appointed by the Emperor.
All attorneys who wish to plead cases before Chancery must secure an Imperial Warrant, undergoing a background check by the Imperial Special Justice Service(or Special Justice)before the final interview before the Emperor.
Only ten percent of all lawyers who attempt to secure Imperial Warrants are successful in securing permission to plead cases before Chancery.
Provincial And Colonial GovernmentEdit
Each of the 27 Vendian provinces and 16 offworld colonies is governed by a Governor-General, elected at large by the citizens of his particular province/colony and granted the noble title of Grand Knight by the Emperor upon election.
The Governor-General is assisted by his Advisory Council, consisting of the heads of all provincial/colonial govermental departments and overseen by the provincial/colonial prefect.
Each of the colonies and provinces has a bicameral legislature organized along the same lines as Parliment, with Noble and Common Assemblies, overseen by the prefect, who also serves as Governor-General should the current Governor-General become incapacitated.
Each of the provinces and offworld colonies has its own panel of three to seven magistrates, half appointed by the provincial/colonial legislature, provincial/colonial half appointed by the Governor-General, and the presiding magistrate appointed by the other magistrates.
The provincial/colonial magistrates are charged with hearing cases concerning high crimes committed against the citizens of their particular province/colony and serve as courts of originial jurisdiction in civil cases.
The Imperial Armed ForcesEdit
The Vendian Imperial Armed Forces are subdivided into the Imperial Guard, the Imperial Navy and Imperial Military Intelligence, all under the command of the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces and his command staff.
The Imperial Armed Forces use the same rank structure as the Stellar Corps.
The Imperial GuardEdit
Numbering three million women and men in fifteen legions, the Vendian Imperial Guard is the Empire's primary ground assault force, and a largely mobile one, with grav AFVs(doubling as tanks and APCs), grav artillery platforms, walkers and even some powered armor units, as well as hydrofoils and atmospheric fighter craft, bombers and VTOL gunships for coastal and air defense.
The Imperial Guard contributes an equivalent of five legions of troops to the Stellar Corps as per its obligation under the Congressional Charter.
The Imperial Navy is the Vendian space force, organized into seventeen fleets, one stationed at the homeworld and one at each of the Empire's offworld colonies. Each fleet is centered around a command class vessel, with various cruiser-, destroyer-, frigate-, long-range fighter-, scout-, medical-, and transport- class vessels supporting them.
The Imperial Military Intelligence ServiceEdit
Working closely with Stellar Corps Intelligence, the Vendian Imperial Military Intelligence Service is the Empire's external intelligence-gathering organization, with a small staff in Shallowmarine coordinating the efforts of over three hundred operatives in the field.
Imperial Military Intelligence also maintains seventeen Special Operations Teams(SOTs)for use in commando-style operations and guerilla warfare.
In particular, the SOTs are trained to raise, cadre, train and command local resistance units in the field in the event of occupation of Imperial soil by an invader.
Other Imperial OrganizationsEdit
The Imperial Special Justice ServiceEdit
The Imperial Special Justice Service is the Vendian national criminal investigation and counter-intelligence organization, famous throughout Congressional Space for exceptional competence, professinalism, courtesy, and dogged determination to get their man, even at the risk of their own lives.
Special Justice agents are notorious for never letting go of a case, no matter how long it has remained unsolved and have an almost fanatic adherance to the letter of the law, as well as a willingness to work with most other Kelosian security services(the UPW's Buerau of Investigation and Internal Security being a notable exception).
In particular, agents of the UNATA's Presidential Security and Investigation Directorate refer to their Special Justice counterparts as "cousins," indicative of the two agencies'(and their parent nations') close relationship with one another.
Special Justice have been the subject of numerous holoentertainments over the last century or so Galactic.
The Imperial Customs ServiceEdit
Working closely with the PTC, Imperial Customs are notorious for not letting anything come into Imperial soil which is illegal or dangerous.
In particular, Western citizens, raised with the belief that the right to keep and bear arms allows them to carry Class One blaster cannon in public, complain about the "stupid" Imperial Customs regulations which do not allow visitors to bring so much as a pocketknife into Vendian soil.
Imperial Customs accepts these complaints with grace, their agents even laughing at the countless holoentertainments which make them the butt of jokes throughout Congressional Space.
To them, this just means they're doing their jobs and doing them well.
The Vendian Broadcasting ServiceEdit
VBS owns the Empire's part of the TerraNet.
A government concern funded by sales taxes on ITs, the VBS is largely famous for its objective news broadcasts and the biting satire and dry wit of their dramedies, copied without success by other broadcast media corporations throughout Congressional Space.
In particular, CommPlus has attempted to port the VBS dramedy "Couples" over to their network, the resulting series "Girlfriends" being universally panned as a cheap knockoff of the originial, even as it enters its twentieth season.
The Imperial Health ServiceEdit
No organization is more maligned, especially amongst Westies, who believe that the healing of the sick and weak should be based on the profit motive, than the Imperial Health Service, recently denounced by Ragev Jules as,"the most egregious example of the nanny state mentality I have ever seen."
Taxpayer-funded, the Imperial Health Service offers free health care to its citizens and significantly-discounted healthcare to non-citizens, the IHS' doctors and med techs being paid a set(and reasonable) annual salary.
Westie horror stories of bungling quacks and substandard medical technology aside, the Imperial Health Service's professionals are either the equal of or superior to most health care professionals througout Congressional Space, with equipment on the cutting edge of technology, the IHS even recruiting and studying the Helic and Darkworlder medicial professions and technology in an attempt to provide optimum service to their patients.
As one Vendian citizen put it," we might pay a little more in taxes, but we do get what we pay for in the long run."