Encyclopaedia of Aquila
Volume V: Voshe and the Oceanic Republic of Voshe
For scholarly purposes, Chalise Jelani
Agadir, Oceanic Repository of World Studies
Highharveste, 3rd dawn, 4852
Voshe - the island continent lying squarely in the bosom of the Sea of Mes Raina. It is indubitably a land blessed with a unique and powerful culture and immense untapped wealth. Even so, it has been fraught with all manner of evil and crime until this century. The embers of a bloody past have lit a flame within the soul of the continents' denizens - one that is set to power the newborn Oceanic Republic as it solidifies itself as a center of trade, education, and skilled labor in the new world.
The sizeable continent of Voshe is striped with savannahs and deserts, giving way to lush prairie only near the coasts of Tarasque, Agadir, and Ancbold. It is dotted with hot pastures in which sturdy fauna graze under the cover of acacia trees, and blazing deserts through which only the bravest travelers have hitherto passed. The topography of Voshe is almost entirely flat, beginning at sea level and sloping upward at a snail's pace until it gives way to the savannah hills. Despite the harsh climate, the continent is blessed with geographically traversible terrain that, owing in no small part to Dashari and other investors, is now the subject of an expansive railway system.
The land, in this peacetime, has drawn countless visitors from abroad who happily pay a sack of emeralds to be guided to the continent's beautiful oases and sloping hills covered in unique flora.
People and Society
The Oceanic Republic is home to about 16 million people, spread far and wide between Agadir and Ancbold. The population density is relatively low, and the physiological density is slowly decreasing as a result of agricultural expansion in the inland. Its largest population centers are Tarasque and Ancbold, followed closely by the capital of Agadir. As the population increases at a rate considerably higher, many families are moving inland and domesticating the savannah with the eager sponsorship of the government through a series of homestead acts.
One of Voshe's defining features is its almost entirely Oceanic population; indeed, the continent is home to a measured 98% of the world's oceanic population, up from around 80% before the crushing of the slave trade. These people have a darker skin color than most Aquilans, similar to that of the Dashari and just lighter than rich cocoa beans. The dominant language by far is Oceanic, academically known as Voshi, but there is a growing popularity of High Kilranian, Occan, and particularly Zetashari, whose hearth is closest to the island.
The Oceanic people are largely socially conservative and value family ties above all else. Men and women are roughly equal, although the current demographic transition stage in which Voshe finds itself places a demand on women to remain home and raise young. Regardless, women are common in both the government and the military.
Religion has a considerable influence, and the prominent religion is Oimezenism, a polytheistic religion focused on worship of the sea.
As of late, the similar Oceanic and Dashari cultures have intermingled. It is common to see Dashari warriors and merchants in Voshi ports, some of them even taking up temporary residency. As an indirect result, there has been a significant boom in interracial marriages and children; the average age of an Oceanic-Dashari citizen is three years old. The most common and earliest seen marriage of this kind is between Dashari women and Voshi men as a result of the Sultanate's involvement in the Nascent Revolution; however, in recent years, strengthening economic ties have brought more Dashari men to the island republic. Offspring of these marriages are slightly larger than regular oceanic babies.
Government and Courts
The government of the Oceanic Republic of Voshe is legally split into three; the Presidency, the High Oceanic Council, and the Courts of Voshe. The lawmaking is handled by the former two; the HOC is a council of fifteen from large cities and provinces all across the continent that conceives laws and then votes to recommend them to the President by simple majority. The President may then either sign the law or veto it, and presidential vetoes may be overridden by a majority of 12 council members.
The judicial system is composed of six courts: five provincial courts and the Voshi Supreme Court. The provincial courts involve themselves in high-level civil and occasional criminal cases relegated to them by the city courts, and the Supreme Court may exercise certiorari and continue these cases if the provincial decisions are appealed. The Supreme Court is also the legal arm of the government as well as a deterrent to the other two, as it decides whether implemented laws are in line with the Voshi constitution and its emphasis on liberties.
The President can serve for a maximum of three two-year terms, and HOC members may serve for a maximum of four. There exists criticism stating that the HOC is not truly representative as its strict allocation of one member per legal division grants more power to rural citizens.
The citizens of Voshe, almost all of whom were either former slaves or trading farmers, have given the republic a range of skills. After the end of the revolution, countless guilds formed with government charters, including the carpenters' and fishermen's guild. These companies are run almost completely collectively, with financial power often being relegated to a board of skilled economists, businessmen, or accountants. The guilds are deeply interconnected, and trade amongst each other as well as with the public.
The fiscal policy of the government is largely libertarian, and the methods of fund accrual are mostly a small income tax and a guild operations tax. The HOC has the power to adjust this budget by a four-fifths majority. Both taxes are inversely proportional to the wealth of the taxation target; that is, the wealthier individuals and organizations are taxed more.
The economy is split evenly between the manufacturing and service sectors. The newborn mining industry has led to a boom in coal, iron, and redstone, which have been used throughout the country as material for constructing railways, factories, and power lines. Most striking of all is the booming export sector, which sells unique products like acacia, refined sandstone, and etched glass to consumers abroad. The current primary exports are lumber and skilled labor.
Education is also both a rising goal and a rising profession in the republic, and many more people are attending schools; over the first years of the postbellum era, this dramatically increased the population of skilled labor, and Voshi scientists are beginning to integrate themselves into the world academic system.
Being a newborn state built on a continent that was ravaged by plague and crime until two decades ago, the country lags behind others in terms of technology. There are vast and wildly successful undergoing projects focused on electrifying the country through redstone centuries after many other states finished doing so. Intracontinental transportation is mostly carried out through a system of mid-speed trains that carry both passengers and cargo.
Military science is effectively nonexistant and is not a priority.
Military and Security
Owing in equal parts to its lack of land borders, its partnerships with other states, and a strong cultural aversion to peace, the military is mostly nonexistant. On land, the army is mostly dispatched as an aid to police whenever necessary, and its affairs are mostly to secure villages and small towns from incursions by packs of wild animals as well as crush crime in unincorporated land. More impressively, being the beating heart of the Great Oceanic Fleet, the republic has a well-funded small navy that has successfully brought piracy to its death knell and accompanies merchant fleets throughout the world. The Ocean Force is a symbol of Voshi power and prosperity and are a new and respected sight across the world.
The small Voshe army, however, is exceedingly well-trained and adapted to its environment. The matriarch-generals of the nearby Sultanate of Dashari are prominent mentors to many Voshi officers, and provide training in desert/savannah pacification in exchange for priority in Voshe's iron, lumber, and labor exports.
The regular army man is equipped with a bow, as well as an iron sword and iron equipment. Officers do not dress any differently. Sailors have no uniform, but often opt to wear orange or blue, the republic's flag colors.
The republic's closest ally by far is the Sultanate of Dashari, with whom the continent has had ties for several centuries. The Sultanate is the country's largest export consumer as well as a key investor in its transportation projects. As a formal gesture of friendship, the Sultanate guarantees the republic's independence.
Besides their hulking friends in northern Aphelion, the Oceanic Republic has begun forming ties with the Free City of Dreiton, Nova Aquila, and Occa, all of which are interested in the continent's mines and their unique contents.
The Oceanic Republic of Voshe has no foreign disputes, formal or informal.
To be added.