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The Rheinland Federation is a group of city-states and former nations in the area surrounding the Rhine in what was once West Germany. It was formed out of fear of invasion or seizure by Luxembourg as had happened to the Saar region.
Aftermath of Doomsday
As it was the industrial heart of West Germany, the Rhine area was hit extremely hard by Doomsday with around 12 cities/military bases in the region being targeted by missiles. In the aftermath of the chaos the FGR was dissolved and a variety of city-states and small nations were formed by surviving US Army units and German Army forces. One of the largest and most prosperous of these was the one built around the city of Karlsruhe which was led by the former city council.
Slowly the area stabilised as the many city-states established diplomatic relations with each other and also began to develop militaries to protect themselves. The government of Waldeck also intervened in the north-east region of the Rhine area and seized it for itself.
As Luxembourg had survived since Doomsday they had been expanding in the aftermath of Doomsday and several of the city-states in the believed (Correctly) that only by pooling their military and resources together could they defend themselves. They formed what became known as the Southern Alliance and established formal relations with Luxemburg. Although tensions always remained high the two nations never went to war and the success of the Alliance in containing Luxemburg led to several other states in southern Rheinland joining the alliance.
Although these states were not a united nation they did have a shared currency, military and economy. This led to the creation of a Rhineland Parliament which was established in 2000 and governed economic policy. The Southern Alliance soon came into contact with another coalition of city states and nations in the northern regions. The northern group had a more co-ordinated government structure as the government also governed internal policies within its constituent states. The Southern Alliance soon adopted this form of government for itself as the differences between its members slowly faded away.
The two Rhineland Confederations eventually decided to unify as a single entity in the early 2000's and a period of integration was undertaken over the next three years and in 2005 the two groups united as a single group with the city states as members.
The Rhineland Federation was formed on the 15th of July 2005 in the city of Karlsruhe in the southern Rhineland. The two Chancellors both ended their terms in power of their respective groups and adopted their new positions as President and Chairman of the newly formed Rhineland Federation. However while the Rhineland Federation was now a unified country it was not without its threats, Luxembourg was sending explorers out into the Federation's land and the Federation took a very dim view of this as it viewed it as a threat to its existence.
The next time explorers entered the Federations land however they were captured and taken to the nearby township of Rüdesheim an der Nahe. While they were not harshly treated by the Federations men they weren't exactly treated with respect and when they were sent back to Luxembourg with their fingers broken the Luxembourg government sent out a more powerful force to guard its explorers from what they thought were scavengers. However they were Very mistaken and when one of the Luxembourg guards accidentally shot a Rheinland soldier in the leg they were attacked by teams of Federation troopers. The guards were killed or left for dead and the explorers were captured and taken to the current capital of the Federation, Bingen am Rhein. Learning that the explorers were from Luxembourg the Rhineland Federation had to radically rethink its policies. They had assumed that the explorers were simply raiders and they quickly made apologies to the Luxembourg government, Luckily the government accepted the apology and the first major crisis facing the Federation ended peacefully.
Conflict with Army renegades
Soon news came to the Rhineland Federation of a group of army renegades controlling the area to the north of the Rhineland Federation. These units however had not remained subservient to the civilian command chain (As the units in the southern Rhine area had) and were maintaining brutal control over the population. The Federation didn't view this as major issue however until the summer of 2006. The policy suddenly changed in June of that year when organised renegade army units equipped with 2 Chieftain tanks entered Rhineland territory. Although the tanks were eventually stopped by Rhineland soldiers taking C4 and mines and detonating them near the tanks they had caused the death of 200 citizens.
This left the Federation in a state of shock, every other incursion from the north had been from a few disorganised units armed with rifles and pistols. The few tanks in the Federations lands had long been abandoned to rust due to lack of fuel as had the anti-tank weapons on the assumption they would never be needed again. Unfortunately these developments had left the Federation with absolutely no anti-tank equipment and something had to be done to remedy the situation.
There was however a quick solution to this problem, a group of Federation explorers stumbled upon a group of Leopard one tanks in storage in preparation for transfer to an unknown country. As well as this there were also fifteen M60 American tanks that had been left untouched by doomsday. Although fuel supplies were very low there was enough to provide fuel for the M60's and the Leopards for at least a month. So on the 7th of September an armoured expeditionary force consisting of ten Leopard tanks, two M60's and several hundred Rhineland soldiers left Federation territory to find and destroy the base of operations for these organised groups. They soon found it, the city Aachen had been taken over by the army units and the population were living in conditions that the federation would use for animals. Outraged by this Federation army units engaged and killed every last army unit, It wasn't painless though as the Rhineland forces lost three tanks and fifty men. The men lost in this battle are commemorated every year on the 10th of September (Liberation day).
At the end of the month all of the organised renegades had been killed on surrendered and there leader Andrew Bellamy was publicly executed in front of crowds of people in his once capital Aachen. The Rhineland Federation then issued a declaration stating that all the remaining groups in the inhabitable areas in the south could surrender and be integrated into the Federation or they could fight on and all die. Unsurprisingly most of the groups surrendered and the remainder were hunted down by infantry.
Reconstruction & 2007 Elections
The damage caused by the renegade groups in the northern Rhine area was immense. Over 300,000 people were living in conditions barely suited to animals, let alone human beings. However the entire industrial might of what was once the heart of Europe's industry was not idle and soon the conditions had been improved for at least a quarter of a million people. However many issues still faced the Federation, food supplies were decreasing rapidly, fuel was running out and the citizens of the federation were tied of being run by two unelected dictators.
The first and most obvious thing done to alleviate these problems was the resignation of both the President and Chairman of the Rhineland Federation and the re-creation of the Rhineland Parliament (Disbanded in 2005). To this parliament the many city-states of the Federation elected an ambassador and more importantly elected a President who would then appoint a Chairman from the pre-war party with the most ambassadors to the Rhineland parliament. The new parliament quickly set about turning the country's workforce out of their homes and into the fields, several hundred new farms were created to alleviate food problems and some bio-fuel fields were also grown.
The Rheinland Federation as a unique form of government which is based on its origins as the Southern Alliance. Each of the 200 member states of the Rheinland Federation elects an ambassador to the Rheinland Parliament, most of the ambassadors are from Germany's pre-war political parties and at the moment the Chairman (Leader of the Parliament) is from the SDP while the President is from the CDU. The Rheinland Parliament has only existed from 2007 however as prior to that the Rheinland Federation was ruled by a co-operative dictatorship in which the leaders of the pre 2005 leader of the Southern Alliance and the Rheinland Confederacy.
Uniquely the Federation has no set capital and each year the Parliament moves to the new capital. Capitals are selected on the order in which they joined the Federation so as Neuss was the third city to join (The practice having been introduced in 2007) it is the capital for 2010.
Like its government the Rheinland Federation's military is a hangover from its early days as the Southern Alliance. Each state is responsible for maintaining its own military and the various militaries only fall under Federation command in times of crisis (For example during the Luxembourg hostage crisis and the warlord crisis). This gives the various militaries a great deal of autonomy and this can lead to incidents in itself.
However one of advantage of this system is that it is impossible for aggressors to predict military movements within the Federation or how they will respond to a war. This is because that like the capital city the state with overall control over the military varies from year to year and so an aggressor might plan an attack while the commander from Neuss might be in command but he might have been replaced by the time of the attack. While this has its disadvantages there are provisions laid out in the constitution which allow the commander at the time to remain in control should the crisis last more than a year. Although it is hard to tell the overall number of men in the Federation' military official figures have the number of men serving at 60,000 throughout all 40 city-states and republics.
The Rheinland Federation was home to the Pre-Doomsday heart of West Germany. Most of the infrastructure was destroyed by Doomsday but a variety of factories have remained intact. Despite the remaining factories the Federation has shifted its economy away from industry and has become an agricultural nation. Recently the factories have resumed operation and the Federation offers the following items for export (mostly to French survivor states and more recently to Luxembourg and the Alpine Confederation);
- Small Arms
The Rheinland Federation has no official religion as like so many other parts of its system it is up to the individual states. However the majority of states follow Roman Catholicism although some have no official religion, others follow Protestant Christianity and in one case Judaism. Despite this Roman Catholicism is considered by many to be a De Facto state religion.
The Rheinland Federation has one national newspaper Der Bund heute (The Federation Today) and the rest of the media is controlled by the individual state, many of which have nationalized state medias.
There are only one large sport in the Federation which is Football. It has retained its pre-DD popularity and football teams from the 40 member states compete in three tiers of football, The First, Second and Third divisions. Despite the sports popularity the Rheinland Federation is not a member of FIFA although it is applying to join. The president of the Rheinlands Football Association is also one of the most vocal proponents of a new European Cup to encourage co-operation with other states.
Germany's fantastic Autobahn network has mostly degraded into ruin since Doomsday but the Federation has spent millions on maintaining the Deutsche Bahn and it has allowed the many city-states and nations to remain in contact following Doomsday. Because of this the Rhein Bahn (The Deutsche Bahn's) successor its regarded as one of the best in Europe although this has come at a massive loss to the rest of the travel network.
While the Federation itself is a Federal Republic the various states of the Federation are not all obliged to be a republic themselves. For example the state centered around the city of Karlsruhe is a constitutional monarchy while the city state of Neuss is a Republic. The presence of monarchies in the Federation has caused discussion amongst Federation politicians, as there is concern that the King of Prussia could legitimately claim the allegiance of those monarchies as he is the direct descendant of the German Emperor.
The Federation has good relations with most of the French successor states and North Germany. However, it has tense relations with Luxembourg and Saar and dislikes the new German monarchies such as Prussia.