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Terran Alliance

Terran Alliance

The Terran Alliance was the first central government to control all of Terra. Though it eventually devolved into a tyrannical organization, the Terran Alliance funded and began the Brave New Age of Man with the Deimos Project (faster-than-light space travel). Able to travel great distances quickly, humanity began extra-terrestrial colonization. Therefore, the Terran Alliance was also the first central interstellar government in history.

Early Years

The Terran Alliance was based upon the Western Alliance, a multinational political entity which in its first decade came to include Europe, North America, the former Soviet Union, India, and East Asia. By 2086, its membership and influence encompassed enough of Terra that the organization was renamed the Terran Alliance. Being devoted to scientific development, the Alliance spent heavily on both pure research and real-life applications; Alliance-funded scientists pioneered orbital heavy industry and faster-than-light space travel after advances in fusion and microwave technologies, but at a tremendous price in terms of civil unrest and economic hardship. The Terran Alliance was riven almost from the start by the division between the handful of wealthy and/or populous nations that dominated the alliance and the smaller, poorer nations who suffered economic hardship as a result of the Alliance's policies and disproportionate taxes.

The Deimos Project and the resulting boom in space exploration and colonization added fuel to the fire. Several nations seceded from the Alliance, and the poorer members that remained bore a disproportionate burden of the cost. Yet it was the United States, possessing the most wealth and influence, and other wealthy and populous states who colonized the bulk of the most hospitable worlds closest to Terra. Colonists from poorer and weaker countries were forced to travel farther out from Terra, or settle marginally habitable worlds.

Waning Years

At the completion of the Alliance Grand Survey of Inhabited Planets in 2235, the Terran Alliance stood at the very zenith of its power, controlling more than 600 inhabited colonies within 120 light years of Terra. However, this statistic is misleading; less than 360 worlds were actually controlled by the Alliance, while illegal colonies and blockade running were common practice. Shortly after the completion of the survey in January, 2236, the aptly-named world of Freedom declared its independence - frustrations with Alliance taxation policies and overbearing colonial authorities prompted rebellion on this world and many others.

The Outer Reaches Rebellion lasted 18 months between early 2236 and autumn 2237. Eager to crush the rebels and demonstrate the capabilities of the Alliance military, the ruling Terran Expansionist Party increased funding to the armed forces and ordered it to quash the rebellion. Under Major General Gunther Stein, the Second Interstellar Combined Assault Force set out from Terra, only to be attacked at every jump point, and embroiled in guerilla and/or scorched earth warfare on more than 50 systems. Worse, many planets either refused to send troops and supplies, or aided the rebels with arms and personnel. Ultimately, the rebellion never officially ended; no ceasefire was ever formally declared. The isolationist Terran Liberal Party simply replaced the Expansionists in power, and combined with public antipathy at the costly war, were able to order their soldiers home. By 2237, the Liberal Party was in control of Parliament.

2242 also saw the end of the Alliance as a powerful influence in Inner Sphere affairs. The Liberal Party passed the Demarcation Declaration; almost all garrisons and officials stationed more than 30 light years from Terra (one single faster-than-light translation) were recalled. The majority of the worlds settled by humanity were granted independence whether they wanted it or not, and subsequently left to fend for themselves.

For the rest of its life, the Alliance focused its attentions on Terra. Political instability and increasingly brutal government repression drove millions to emigrate from Terra, including its 'best and brightest' citizens. By 2315, the instability and corruption that had plagued the Alliance for decades finally brought about its collapse into civil war. James McKenna, leader of the Alliance Global Militia, deposed the remnants of the Alliance government and replaced it with the Terran Hegemony in 2315.

Military Organization

The Terran Alliance divided its entire military into 10 military commands. Each of these commands was then organized in a similar manner, though compositions and strengths may have varied. The Terran Alliance used the normal military organized adopted throughout (nearly) the entire Inner Sphere. Terran forces were organized in a triangular hierarchy.

Society and Relations

The Terran Alliance emerged from Terran nations, and was dominated by lucrative western nations. This meant that early policies generally favored richer superpowers, like the United States of America, at the expense of developing and poor nations. Global fiscal policy dictated taxes low enough to be payable by richer citizens, but large enough to cause developing economies to stagnate.

No one, however, can dispute the universal utility of opening the stars to human colonization. However, here again, richer governments, like the United States, were able to make the first discoveries. The consequence is that worlds in close proximity to Terra, especially those world’s most hospitable to human civilization, generally tended to be controlled by descendants of highly industrialized and richer nations. These colonies are also more likely to be better supplied and able to spend more on terraformation, for instance by importation of large quantities of water bound in asteroids, as was pioneered by Rudolph Ryan of the Ryan Iceship Cartel. Core worlds within the Alliance tended to be more comfortable than recently colonized worlds.

Ultimately, the origins and circumstance of Terra and the core worlds of the Terra Alliance led to a "not my problem" attitude. Further, as displacement from Terra increased, space becomes increasingly unexplored. Having built a rich, developed core of to the Alliance, the "haves" of the Alliance definitely had more to lose. Alliance policy remained extremely authoritarian, initially towards underdeveloped Terran nation-states, later towards underdeveloped colony worlds. The policy doctrine of the Alliance can be summed up in the statement, "Those who are not for us are against us." Conducting foreign policy with such absolutes of thinking ultimately led to the Outer Reaches Rebellion, and the decline of the Alliance.

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