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Zaire (1983: Doomsday)

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Zaire
Timeline: 1983: Doomsday

OTL equivalent: Kinshasa and Brazzaville, and Environs
Flag of the Democratic Republic of the Congo Coat of arms of Congo-Léopoldville (1960-1963)
Flag Coat of Arms
ZaireDD
Location of Zaire

Motto
Unité, Travail, Progrès (French)
("Unity, Work, Progress")

Anthem "La Congolaise"
Capital Kinshasa
Largest city Kinshasa
Other cities Brazzaville
Language
  official
 
French
  others Kongo, English, Lingala
Religion Christian, Animist
Demonym Zairois
Government Parliamentary Federation
President Andre Kimbuta
Population 9,300,000 
Independence from Republic of Kinshasa, Socialist Republic of Brazzaville
  declared February 3rd, 2007
Currency Zaire Franc
Time Zone WAT (UTC+1)
Calling Code +871

The Self–Defense Council of Kinshasa and Brazzaville, also known in the international community as Zaire, is a survivor state in the former country of Zaire.

History

Pre-Doomsday

Kinshasa, a city located on the Congo River, was the capital and largest city of Zaire. Brazzaville, the former capital and largest city of the Republic of Congo, lies just across the Congo River from Kinshasa. Together with Brazzaville, the combined population of pre-Doomsday Kinshasa-Brazzaville was just over three and a half million inhabitants.

Post-Doomsday

After Doomsday, the governments of both Zaire and the Republic of Congo collapsed due to the economic and social havoc brought on by Doomsday. The two countries splintered over the next several years into various micronations, some democratic, others ruled by dictators. The two cities, however, were both major military bases, and both survived well after an initial imposition of martial law. Both cities, furthermore, were able to take control of the countryside around them, thus feeding their populations, despite an influx of refugees to both. It was not until 2001 that the two cities began to collaboration, due to their separate governing styles, and not until 2007 that the two formally merged.

After Doomsday, millions of refugees fled the poorer north of both nations towards the cities. In Brazzaville, thanks to Sassou's extensive agricultural policies, that populace was fed, while Kinshasa's more arable land managed to feed their populace. Despite all the agricultural countermeasures, it is estimated that over 850,000 refugees arrived in the two cities in the first three years, and over 210,000 of them died, some due to famine, others due to disease and warring.

Kinshasa

The government of Congo-Kinshasa did not last long following DD. Within a month, Mobutu had been killed, and the army seized control of the city and turned it into a military dictatorship. That, too, did not last long, before a Brazzaville-backed Communist uprising occurred. Over a period of two years, fighting continued sporadically, until the army finally was victorious; the fighting, however, created a rift across the Congo river that would not be resolved for nearly 20 years. Weakened the army was forced to concede to a popular revolt the next year demanding democracy. The first president of the newly proclaimed Republic of Kinshasa was Mafulu Kaputu, despite a controversial election. He ruled for the next eight years, a reign noted both for its stability and its relative prosperity. New contact was made with a few other states, such as Cabinda, Zambia, the PRA and the RoA, as well as a single, solitary expedition to Katanga. 

In 1994, after 8 years of his reign, a vote-rigging scandal led to the army stepping in and forcing Kaputu to retire. The opposition, the People's Democratic Party, or PDP, then took control. Led by Andre Kimbuta, they began to de-escalate tensions with Brazzaville, who were also led by socialists, and over the next six years signed trading agreements and began to integrate with the other city. By 1998, travel between the two cities was unrestricted, as was trade, as a result of their proximity. In 2000, the Treaty of Friendship and Mutual Defense was signed between the two cities, a precursor to the Self Defense Council that exists today.

Brazzaville

Unlike their neighbors to the east, Brazzaville stayed mostly stable. With the help of the army, Denis Sassou Nguesso stayed in power, though he lost nearly five-sixth of the nation following the chaos after DD, holding Pool and small parts of other departments. Seeing the fall of Zaire, Sassou immediately realized that the most important element to survival would be food; especially given the tidal wave of refugees sweeping south from the jungles to the north. With the army, he immediately started forest clearance operations and established vast farmlands near the river Congo, as well as in the lowlands to the south. By late 1984, the nation was in solid hands, and Sassou saw an excellent opportunity to foster socialism in his larger neighbor. However, his attempts to foster a Communist revolution were eventually put down by the military, and would contribute to horrendous relations between the two nations for the next 15 years.

In 1988, Sassou was killed in an attempted coup; though it was brutally put down by loyal elements of the army, a rogue aide shot Sassou in the head, and he passed away three days later. The result were democratic elections, which the Socialists won by a massive margin, with Pascal Lissouba becoming the President of the Republic of the Congo (unlike their neighbors in Kinshasa, Brazzaville would not acknowledge the fall of their nation until 2000, when they would become the Socialist Republic of Brazzaville). Shortly afterward, with the rise of Andre Kimbuta in Kinshasa, the two cities would gradually begin to foster better relations, as mentioned in the previous section.

The Kongolese War of Expansion and Cooperation

In 2001, the United Republic of the Kongo began to assert its claims to the Kongolese people of Africa, hoping to unite most of what used to be Angola, the RoC, and Zaire. Though that was their long term goal, initially, they hoped to expand into their region, hoping to seize Cabinda, as well as the People's Republic of Angola. 

The Kongolese forces attacked Cabinda, which both cities had good relations with, in August 4th of 2001. After heavy fighting, the PRA joined in to prevent the fall of Cabinda, In October, Kinshasa and Brazzaville made a joint declaration of war upon the URoK, and sent troops to fight as well as some limited aid. That, along with the threat of the Republic Angola itself entering the war, brought Kongo to the negotiating table. In his documentary A Tale of Two Cities, which chronicled the rise of Zaire, 28 year old Australian director Hugh Pearce would describe the two city's contributions to be absolutely essential to the ceasefire.

Over the next six years, the Kongo would flair up again three times; however, apart from skirmishes, no major fighting would occur again until 2013, when the Southern Congo Crisis would begin. Over that time, the two cities would drift together, while also having rising tensions with the Communist dictatorships of Cabinda and the PRA, and would have closer relations with the RoA. 

The Self-Defense Council

In 2007 the twin city-states of Kinshasa and Brazzaville in former Zaire formed a Self–Defense Council to at least try to re-establish control over a potentially hospitable region. Lissouba resigned following the treaty, leaving Kimbuta as the sole President of the new nation. Despite occasional flareups from the Kongo, the result of the treaty of a period of unmatched stability and prosperity. In 2010, Zaire joined the LoN as an observer, and is currently applying for a full membership. In 2012, President Kimbuta announced his expansion plans into the Congo, offering settlers free land in the south of what had been Zaire. However, settlement was disrupted by the rise of the Southern Congo Crisis.

Southern Congo Crisis

International relations

Zaire is an observer member of the League of Nations, and is applying for permanent membership.

Before the formation of the Self-Defense Council, Kinshasa and Brazzaville worked together to prevent the expansionist Republic of Kongo. Since 2007 relations remain tense but it has not yet broken out into war.

Zaire has excellent relations with the Republic of Angola, as well as with Zambia, Katanga, and Botswana to a limited extent. However, its relations with the PRA have steadily declined despite their mutual enemy in the URoK. This has made matters complicated as both the PRA and Zaire have good relations with Cabinda; the PRA is Cabinda's main military partner, while Zaire is its economic and social one.

Zaire, as one of the few true democracies in Central Africa, receives large amount of aid from both the SAC and the ANZC, as well as some other nations. 

Zaire has conducted military exercises with Cabinda, the Republic of Angola, and Zambia.

Economy

Zaire's economy is largely agricultural, but over the last six years, the nation has begun to build up an extensive industrial base, producing fertilizer, which is in great demand in the region, as well as basic necessities. There is also a single car factory in the city of Brazzaville.

Zaire's agricultural revolves almost entirely around Cassava and cattle herds. In Brazzaville, this is the result of Sassou's laws, intended to feed the maximum possible populace, a practice that soon spread to Kinshasa.

Zaire is a major trade power in the region, with the best infrastructure and industry; despite this, it is estimated that nearly 35% of the nation lives in poverty.

Zaire has a fairly high GDP for the region, but also has extreme income disparity. Most of the richest citizens live in Brazzaville, while the capital, Kinshasa, is mostly poorer, with a larger industrial base and poorer standards of living. 

Military

Zaire has a reasonably powerful military, capable of calling up nearly 50,000 soldiers in a time of extreme crisis. The nation also has a small air force, mostly consisting of reconnaissance planes, but also with dozens of old military planes from both the USSR and the US, a more formidable arsenal than most in the region. The ANZC has sent trainers to the nation to teach pilots to fly the planes, and the SS recently signed a deal to sell Zaire 35 MiG-21s, as well as 23 outdated Soviet T-72 and T-64 Main Battle Tanks.

Zaire has conducted military exercises with Cabinda, Zambia and the RoA.

Politics

Zaire has six political parties; the People's Democratic Party, which is currently in power, the Christian Democrats, the United Front for Democracy, the Communist party, the Revolutionary Unity party, and the Federalists.

Sports

Football is Zaire's most popular sport and the nation is a member of FIFA. The nation shares a football league with Cabinda, but it has frequently been put on hold on the occasions when tensions between the two nations rise.

Lola Ya Bonobo

Lola Ya Bonobo is the world's largest conservation project for great apes. Founded by Claudine Andre, a Belgian who had lived in Kinshasa since childhood, it has received acclaim from across the globe and is a major generator of tourism revenue for the nation, with thousands of tourists visiting it every year. The tourism rush was so large that the ANZC actually funded the renovation and expansion of Kinshasa's airport.

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