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The name "Alaska" (Аляска) was already introduced in the Russian colonial time, when it was used only for the peninsula and is derived from the Aleut alaxsxaq, meaning "the mainland" or more literally, "the object toward which the action of the sea is directed". It is also known as Alyeska, the "great land", an Aleut word derived from the same root.
Alaska was purchased by the United States from the Russian Empire on March 30, 1867, for US$7.2 million at about two cents per acre (US$4.74/km²). The land went through several administrative changes before becoming an organized territory on May 11, 1912, and the 49th state of the the United States on January 3, 1959.
Doomsday and after
Alaska was the first American territory to be hit by a nuclear weapon when one fell on Elmendorf Air Force Base. Fairbanks, Anchorage, and some of the Aleutian Islands are also hit by nuclear missiles. Chaos reigned throughout most of the state, but the state government managed to regain some control over the state by 1985. Instituting new emergency powers, the state government attempted to coordinate police and military forces in the state to bring order and aide to the damaged areas of the state. In 1987 contact was established with the American Provisional Administration (APA) and they took over control of the government from Juneau, though many of the current member of the emergency state government retained their positions.
From 1987 to 1995 the APA governed the state of Alaska. Disputes between APA administrators and former emergency government members led to several of the latter being dismissed from their posts. This created resentment among the Alaskan people who saw these men and women to be the reason they were still alive, while they found the APA representatives to be outsiders and out of touch with the people. This period also saw the creation of the Alaskan Autonomous Territory in South-West Alaska after several skirmishes between the APA and the USSR led to the Sitka Accord in 1987, which partitioned Alaska.
In 1995, after the US constitution was suspended by President Bush, the people of Alaska held a referendum and voted to follow Hawaii and become an associated state of ANZC. To celebrate the new association, the government of Alaska adopted a new flag based off of elements of the old state flag and Australia's flag
In recent years Alaska has reached out to survivor communities in the former Canadian province of British Columbia and the Yukon Territory. With help from Australia, Alaska has been able to provide these communities with much needed food and medical supplies. There has been some negotiations among the communities about asking for annexation by Alaska. The Commonwealth of Victoria, which claims all of former British Columbia, strongly opposses these negotiations.
Government and Politics
The Alaskan government is basically the same as it was pre-Doomsday, with a few adjustments to reflect its status as an associated state within the ANZC.
The biggest of these adjustments is that the ANZC handles most of Alaska's foreign affairs.
Alaska is governed as a republic, with three branches of government:
- Executive branch, consisting of a governor and other independently elected constitutional officers
- Legislative branch, consisting of a 40-member House of Representatives and a 20-member Senate.
- Judicial branch, consisting of the Supreme Court and various lower courts.
Alaska is a member of the League of Nations.
Alaska's economy relies on its oil exports from its oilfields on the north slope. The Bush administration of the APA had significantly reduced the restrictions on the operations there, assuring practically all of the petroleum needs of the ANZC. Due to the concern over the possibility of accidents, legislation was passed in 1990 by the APA requiring all oil tankers to be double-hulled.
With a shoreline longer than the rest of the western coast of North America, the Pacific Ocean provides an almost endless supply of food fish for national use and for export to the rest of the civilized world. In concurrence with the governments of Oceania, international treaties control the quantity and quality of the industry, but with a reduced market, there is no danger of overfishing of the local, much less the international, waters.
Before Doomsday, tourism played a growing role in the economy of Alaska. However, the vast outdoors of the nation, and the uneasy truce with the Alaskan Autonomous Territory, keep most visitors away from the incredible splendor of the interior. However, tourism plays a small part in the economy as international travel has picked up in recent years. In the late 1990's the government of Victoria reopened the "Inside Passage" to cruise ships, making Juneau and the glaciers of southern Alaska once more a popular destination for its wealthier citizens.
Law Enforcement in Alaska is based on two levels. One level consists of local police departments, usually headed by a sheriff (Juneau's police department is headed by a police chief). The government's Free State Investigative Agency (FSIA) is responsible for crimes that affect the entire country. The FSIA is rumored to conduct reconnaisance missions in the Alaskan DMZ, but no one has been able to prove it and the government has a policy of not responding to such claims.
Every Alaskan citizen, both male and female, is required to serve in the military for two years after their eighteenth birthday and then remain in the reserves until they turn forty-five. Most of the Alaskan military is stationed along the border with Socialist Siberia, though some have been deployed on humanitarian missions in former Canadian territory and remote places of Alaska. The offical title of the military is the Alaskan Defense Force (ADF). The ADF uses equipment purchased from the ANZC.
Hunting and fishing are popular throughout Alaska for both recreation and sustinence.
There are no major professional or collegiate athletic competitions in Alaska. Amateur ice hockey, baseball and American football leagues, each based out of Juneau, represent the highest level of organized competitive sports. High school competition in basketball, American football, ice hockey, baseball and volleyball are more popular amongst the general public. More informal baseball, American football, ice hockey and basketball leagues can be found across the Free State.
The Idiatrod dog race begins on the first Saturday of March in Barrow and ends in Juneau.
Almost all television programming and most radio programming operates out of Juneau.
TV Alaska, affiliated with the ANZBC, carries a mix of local programming and taped programming from the ANZBC and SBS networks. It is carried on Channel 4 in Juneau.
Channel Two, affiliated with the ANZBC, carries local and syndicated programming 24 hours a day from the Seven and Nine networks from Australia/New Zealand, and broadcasts on Channel 2 in Juneau.
Both television stations also have translators in Wasilla, Sitka, Ketchikan, Homer, Valdez and Seward.
Radio-wise, Juneau has 11 stations, all of which have translators throughout the Free State of Alaska:
630 - News, talk, politics
1330 - Entertainment (comedies, dramas, soap operas, children's programming)
88.9 - ANZBC Alaska
89.7 - ANZBC NewsRadio
90.5 - Free State of Alaska Radio - includes news, features, documentaries, information, talk, sport, religion and music with an Alaskan emphasis
94.1 - Pre-Doomsday pop music
98.5 - Adult contemporary
101.7 - Classical, opera
104.3 - Modern pop and rock from Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, South America, Mexico and Europe
105.1 - Country music
106.3 - Rock, pre- and post-Doomsday
There are numerous Free State-affiliated stations through Alaska, each with an emphasis on local news and events.
The Juneau Empire is the newspaper of record, publishing six days a week in and around Juneau and producing a weekly edition for the rest of the state.