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Netherlands Antilles (1983: Doomsday)

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Koninkrijk der Nederlanden
Kingdom of the Netherlands
Reino Hulandes
Reino de los Países Bajos

Timeline: 1983: Doomsday

OTL equivalent: Former Netherlands Antilles
Netherlands antilles Coat of arms of the Netherlands Antilles
Flag Coat of Arms
Capital Willemstad
Largest city Willemstad
Language Dutch, English, Papiamento, Spanish
Monarch Queen Juliana II. (Guillermo)
Prime Minister Eliseo Madretsma
Population 157,000 
Currency New Florin

The Kingdom of the Netherlands is a federally organised kingdom based on the former Netherlands Antilles and usually still colloquially called by that name. It also makes formal claim to the mainland Netherlands.

History

Netherlands

Having been a loyal member of NATO, The Netherlands got its share of Doomsday nuclear onslaught in the form of a nuclear bomb striking the port city of Rotterdam, destroying the whole of the Zuidvleugel, including the government city of The Hague, and rendering the entirety of the Randstad uninhabitable. Bombs detonating in nearby Belgian Antwerp and the German Ruhrgebiet and their subsequent radiation also caused large parts of the country to remain uninhabitable. The only number of survivors of any significance could be found in the Northern parts of the country, where local governors managed to restore order in the years following. The fact that the drainage pumps, lacking fuel, skills and manpower to operate them, remained inoperative after Doomsday further worsened the events, allowing for almost half of the country to fill up with brackish water subsequently, transforming the areas into radiation infested swamps prone to being flooded by the sea.

Antilles, directly post-Doomsday

Meanwhile, the Netherlands Antilles, which had since 1975 been full equals with the Netherlands itself on paper, and united with it in a federacy, remained unharmed, and the bureaucratic and political apparatus remained functional. After the events became known on the Antilles, its prime minister arranged for a common meeting of the parliaments of the Netherlands Antilles, together with four surviving Dutch parliamentarians (three from the Lower House and one from the Upper House, three of them members of the Christian Democratic party and one conservative liberal), who had been in Curaçao at the time, to make agreements for the future of the islands now that the motherland was lost. Though some Antillian parliamentarians favoured severing the now merely symbolic ties with the Netherlands, eventually all delegations voted to maintain the Kingdom of the Netherlands, albeit with several amendments to its structure. The Netherlands Antilles was to be split up into three new member states within the Kingdom (Aruba, Curaçao and Bonaire and the Leeward Islands) and the official languages of the Kingdom were changed to better reflect the linguistic situation of the Antilles. Furthermore an actual federal parliament was created, taking the role that had previously been that of the Dutch parliament in The Hague. Though the monarchy was maintained, no actual monarch was appointed and state symbolism continued to display the late Queen Beatrix.

Antilles, Queen Juliana II

JulianaII

Queen Juliana II

In the years after Doomsday it became known that all members of the Dutch royal family had died during the attack on Rotterdam or because of the radiation following the event. It was for a long time assumed that the country being a kingdom would be even more "symbolic" than in most modern constitutional monarchies. When this issue was, almost jokingly, raised by an affluent Antillian businessman to a Mexican colleague of his, the latter remarked that he did know of a relative of late Queen Juliana living in northern Mexico, having survived the attacks on the United States. After having received word of this, the Antillian federal government sent an envoy to Mexico to see whether this was true. After a year or so the mission proved successful, and later Queen Juliana II, daughter of Princess Christina of the Netherlands, was found living with her father in a town in Northern Mexico. Though she wasn't strictly speaking a member of the Dutch royal family and not eligible to accede the throne, another joint session of the three functioning parts of the Kingdom was held, and it was decided to evoke the right the parliament had to appoint a successor to the throne if no legitimate heir is present. Finally in 2005 the inauguration of Queen Juliana II. took place at Pietermaai Cathedral. Antillian public opinion is still very much divided on the issue.

Attempts to re-occupy the Mainland

With lowering radiation levels and several small, known survivor communities being discovered in the former Netherlands, many have begun to take interest in re-population the very small areas that did not sink into the radiated marshlands that now take up more than 60% of the former kingdom. These calls were finally answered, with the Antilles government currently constructing a military base in an area towards the south-west of the country, with the families of those who work there may allowed to reside there, with a maximum non-military population being up to 200, similar to Provisional Portugal. The entire base is expected to be completed by August 2010.

Politics

The Kingdom of The Netherlands is organised in a federal style, with most authority resting at the substate level. A federal parliament exist to coordinate affairs, to craft foreign policy and arrange for the defence of the islands. The monarchy is strictly constitutional, making the role of King merely symbolic. Though the constitution always speaks of a "King", that role can be fulfilled by both males and females, though obviously a female "King" would seldom be referred to as such. The federal parliament has 80 seats, 20 for each federal subunit. The 20 seats reserved for the Netherlands have permanently remained empty, making that in practice parliament only has 60 seats.

Federal subunits

  • Flag of Aruba Aruba
Capital: Oranjestad
  • Flag of Curaçao Curaçao and Bonaire
Capital: Willemstad
  • Flag of Sint Maarten Leeward Islands
Capital: Philipsburg
(claimed: no actual functioning government)

Demographics

Language

The official languages of the Kingdom at federal level are Dutch, English, Papiamento and Spanish. On the Leeward Island, English is generally used for all administrative purposes. Further south on Aruba and Curaçao and Bonaire Papiamento and Spanish are the most used languages. The use of Spanish on the islands has significantly increased on the islands since Doomsday. The inauguration of Queen Juliana II, who could solely speak Spanish at the time, was even done almost completely in that language, with some Papiamento verses being sung as only exception. The usage of Dutch experienced a significant decline since the destruction of the Netherlands itself and is merely still used for symbolic or legal matters. People born after Doomsday only sporadically have proficiency in the language.

Religion

The majority of the Antillian population belongs to the Catholic church, which was elevated to the state religion upon the inauguration of Queen Juliana II. There are also various sizable protestant denominations on the islands, the religious landscape is completed by small minorities of Jehovah witnesses and Jews.

Foreign relations

The difference in culture between the northern Leeward Islands and the two southern subunits has lead to a much different orientation of the two regions internationally. Whereas the heavily Hispanized south pursued closer bonds with the South American Confederation, the English speaking north is closer to the East Caribbean Federation. Both in the southern states as on the Leeward Islands there has been some call to join these respective entities. The federal government has managed to keep the Anglophone north and the Latin south together and has pursued close economic bonds with both the countries of the SAC as the ECF. The Netherlands Antilles is a member of the League of Nations.

See also

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