The republic variously known as Die Weltbund or Weltenbund, was founded in -123 by Solomani colonists who believed they were descendants of Terra's original rocket scientist. A representative oligarchy dominated by the Sternmeisters, planetary barons who control all resources on their prospective worlds, backed by a very professional army and navy.
Government & Politics
The Die Weltbund government is characterized as having a very high degree of centralization with a very strong bureaucracy, which sets supremely uniform policies that direct a multi-system state and strongly disregards local/planetary differences when it suits the near-supreme oligarchy of the Sternreiter Family. The Die Weltbund government, founded as a Republic, and possesses many features of a Confederation, but is usually classified as an Corporate Hegemony, a type of Hegemony with many properties of an Oligarchy.
The worlds, though wholly owned by the Sternreiters, the planetary governments are allowed much self-rule. There is a caveat to this political freedom as it determined by the steady flow of wealth into the Sternreiters bank accounts.
Another source of conflict is the rivalry between the Sternreiters and the rising power of the confederation bureaucrats who control:
The nobles control most of the wealth, the national assembly, and the lawmaking powers. The bureacrats control the executive and judicial powers plus the Navy and transportation network.
As the bureaucrats increasing their political clout, the nobles have become to fear for loss of power and prestige. Most families have opted to fight, either by clandestine manuvering against the bureacracy or by legislatiion. The Von Manwaring and Hauser-Marck families have opted to ally themselves with the bureaucrats.
Then there is the bureaucrats against the bureaucrats. Corruption is rampant throughout the government, particularly among Stern-Hansa and the Weltbund Navy (the latter having many captains and commands little better than pirates).
Military & Intelligence
In the navy conflict centers around Grand Admiral Reiter Horst von Wessel, who was pushed through by reformist members of the nobles and the navy after DW's humiliating defeat by the Duchy of St. Foy. His infamous order to shoot first when encountering strange vessels was a effort to stem illegal ship captures by which many DW naval officers practice. On the practical side, his naval reforms have increased the morale & effectiveness of the naval forces. In his years as Grand Admiral he has survived 11 attempts on his life, 2 by LOFWIA, 5 by naval personnel, and 4 by parties unknown.
The navy is currently in a state flux due to Grand Admiral von Wessel's reforms. Piracy, extortion, & corruption have declined by naval personnel after many officiers were cashiered in the aftermath of the Imperial Fifth Frontier War. Several of the personnel dismissed have started pirate bands of their own or enlisted into LOFWIA.
History & Background
The height of Die Weltbund power was from 730-923 when they dominated the Die Weltbund, Liberty Hall, Middle Beyond subsectors in The Beyond, and the Piah & Harem subsectors in the Foreven Sector. Since endemic rebellion due to economic inequality fostered by the League of Free Worlds has weakened its hold on outlaying planets. Die Weltbund was an Imperial client state from 612-984, when Die Weltbund rejected the Imperium's request that Weltbund relax their trade monopoly within Weltbund space.
The first explorers to this region were persons who believed they were descendants of the German-speaking space pioneers of Terra. This belief has become the national cult and the main unifying factor among the rival noble families of Die Weltbund. The language and much of the culture is an archaic, idealistic form of early space age German scientists.
Despite this belief in being descended from technocrats, Die Weltbund remains largely non-industrial.
There are three main reasons for this development:
- 1. The first and main reason is the vast natural resources (the main reason these planets were settled) has made the Sternreiters very rich exporting raw goods and made them little disposed to industry.
- 2. Secondary, was the various wars between rival Weltbund nobles, and the increase of piracy between the 2nd-8th centuries Imperial. These internal struggles tended to target the more developed centers, dropping the tech level of many planets.
- 3. The third reason was the fear by the noble families of creating an upwardly-mobile middle class that would threaten the hegemony. Some of the results of the later fears is much of the operation of essential services (the Navy, Stern-Hansa, for example) are nationalized & run by bureaucrats on Bundestag, the captial of Die Weltbund.
Though the family rivalries have faded, there still remain many sources of conflict. The Bundestag on planet Bundestag, consists of members of the Sternreiter families, & planetary representatives appointed by Sternreiters. This much resented by many of the planets, several which rebelled and formed the League of Free Worlds. For the last 3 centuries there has been an undeclared war between Die Weltbund (DW) & League of Free Worlds (LOFW). There is ongoing conflict between Weltbund and the pirate Duchy of St. Foy. Both the LOFW and St. Foy conflicts have disrupted trade routes & decimated the already overstretched resources of Stern-Hansa, the national (and only legal) shipping firms. This has led to Stern-Hansa to employ drastic measures, paying (under the table) bounties to the Weltbund Navy to encouraging the latter to capture starships and trained crews to replace Stern-Hansa's losses. Stern-Hansa has also a clandestine arrangements with the corporation Tuablin to supply trained slave crews & mind control drugs/devices. These measures has created many enemies among merchant crews particularly among free traders, gaining much sympathy for LOWFIA (League of Free Worlds Insurgent Army) terrorists.
Then there is the smuggling problem. With Stern-Hansa's problem many planets have resorted to sell outside Weltbund space via smugglers, both free traders, & corsairs. Also many noble families have increased the size of their system and issued letters of marque to unaligned pirates operating out of Liberty Hall, Mapepire, Delta, and Metchi'Alagwa subsectors. Many of the corsairs wear the uniforms and shipmarkings of the system navies of the planets that hired them. This make for a many sided fight between St. Foy, LOFWIA, unaligned corsairs, privateers, Stern-Hansa, Weltbund Navy, & various system & noble space forces.
References & Contributors (Sources)
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