This is just a page to compile all of the summaries of the 1980 timeskip into one, easily accessed page.
Prusso (is that how you say it?) Armenian War: Prussia takes the coasts and west Erzurum, while the Armenian military manages to force them into a stalemate. It is their first major conflict. Guerrilla warfare inside captured territories is ongoing as Armenia builds up their defensive positions to defend their buildup of force in an attempt to reclaim the land.
Reconstruction in the East with Persian money begins: The West is somewhat ignored by the new policies due to the fact that it may fall into enemy hands. Roads, railways, and airports are built up to improve the standards of living. What meager resources in the East are exploited for export, and Armenia authorizes the building of pipelines through the region for Persian oil.
Military buildup: Assanian forms the ADF and begins modernizing it, with military spending approaching approximately 35% of the GDP (on par with US military expenditure during WWII.) Citizens are formed into a Swiss-like militia and cities are built to be defended.
Economic troubles: With the amount of foreign money being taken on, some economists worried about a potential debt problem.
Nagorno-Karabakh War: Armenia and Azerbaijan engage in a three month battle over the Nagorno-Karabakh, but luckily Persian troops arrive to keep the peace and the war is ended before too many troops could be stretched out. This Persian intervention also keeps Dagestan at bay, but this is also because of bandit raids on their borders.
Armenian involvement in Georgia: NSS agents are deployed to the failed state of Georgia to secure secret landing points for Polish military aid. In addition, bribes and aid are given to local warlords in order to keep Dagestan at bay and also to keep logistic routes open. The remnants of the shattered Armenian Navy are sent to the port of Poti, which has become an Armenian stronghold in the region (like Bagram in Afghanistan for the US.)
Reconstruction continues: Self explanatory.
Armenian-Ethiopian relations are heightened: Ethiopian assistance to Armenia increases in light of Prussian-South African ties. Some hypothesize that this might potentially be a proxy war between the ally of Ethiopia and the ally of South Africa. Armenia's NSS SAU (Special Action Unit) is trained by the Walinzi, and become the most hardcore badasses in the theater.
Prusso-Armenian tensions increase: New fears of a resurgent war emerge.
Armenian-Persian relations get friendlier: Open borders and trading are accomplished, as the two nations continue to support each other: Persia supplies Armenia with whatever it needs (for the most part), while Armenia acts as a buffer against the Mediterranean powers.
Elections begin: In anticipation of the 1980 elections, several Armenian candidates begin running for president. Assanian, the patriarch of the nation, quickly takes a lead due to the state of war the Armenians are in.
The Red Guard Gang's ability to function in Asia is formally demolished with the assassination of the former NPCLA general Hong. Thus destabilizing Asiatic opium distribution. Present at the shoot out that ended his life was several other heads of the gang who fell in the gun fire further weakening RGG power in Oceania and Asia.
An assassination of Kim Il-Sung results in a civil war across North Korea between members of the Juche Party and the more liberal Korea's People's Alliance in government over arguments of secession. The arguments soon devolve into a full fledged civil war within the state as both sides fight for control of Korea. China involves themselves several months later after observations on agents on the ground suggest mass politicide, and the conflict is formally ended in the early months of 1978 with the taming of the radical elements of the Juche Party and political power over Korea being vested in the Korea People's Alliance. North Korea is readmitted into the Comintern.
Over two successive years of mycellium research in Southern China in soil decontamination the work of Winho Fa and Xuizhi Hai is expanded into the Chinese Central Plains to observe the capabilities of fungus to stabilize natural nutrient balances in the soil as well as continue their studies in the preservation qualities of fungus. Other tests are conducted in Inner Mongolia to observe its water retention qualities.
The research of Hua and his partners at the University of Tianjin with the semi-conductive materials establishes the Electrical Control Gate as being a "Future standard" for military equipment. Tsu's radio is entered into production in 1978 while the Space and Science Ministry works to include them as a standard in their data retrieval systems and contracts Hua, Cong, and Tsu for engineering work within the ministry and to help give direction to the direction of their data systems to better use the systems and to develop them with the assistance of larger teams in a wider scientific and engineering atmosphere. ECG's are designated a publicly available technology as such.
The Space and Science Ministry begins the design and research to begin preparations for their first public mission dubbed "Sūn shǒubiǎo". And working with a number of minds across the bloc is working towards the culmination of seeing life animals in orbit. A cat named "Yuai" is voluntered as a test subject for the project.
Early in July Chinese forces liberate Davao, officially marking the end of the Second Philippines War. Enrillo Jejomar also accuses the IB agents sent to capture the Pope of Mindanao of carelessness in their duties for presenting to him a dead body. Shen and Tung return to the mainland and are assigned to new tasks. The Leggionaire remains stationed in Davao for Chinese naval engineers to reconstruct, as well as the captured Russian carrier caught defecting.
In Russia, Nikolov's visit to the Republic of Sakha uncovers a series of harsh criticisms against the Siberian Republic and the Resurrection from a proto-fascist perspective. Hostilities between the Republic of Sakha and the independent communes of the former Siberian Republic commence. Resulting in the redrafting of a Siberian - declared Russian - socialist constitution and reconstruction of the formally military-oriented government to unify the communes and subdue Sakha. The war ends in 1978, and brief skirmishes with communes of a similar mind-set ultimately reunify Siberia. Siberia is admitted to the Comintern a month later.
Zhang Auyi's Comintern becomes officially. Formally restructuring the power structure of the Asian Socialist bloc and forming a central international governing body centered in Shanghai (the headquarters of which finished in January 1978, and is dubbed the "Pond of Seven Unions"). The new Comintern granting additional autonomy to its now vastly different make up by initializing a geographically based system of unified blocs across the seven continents based on present members. These blocs acting on their own to discuss and create legislature on local affairs to degrees set between all members by the central International Politburo (whose operations include the executive drafting and enforcement of Comintern laws of friendship and international morality, the International People's Court handles the judicial aspects of Comintern, taking cases made between members of any region and passing judgement via a bench of judges elected from the blocs).
The trade between the US and China has initialized a culture exchange between the new nations, increasing the exchange of musical forms. Yiaoliang Chen conducts two tours of the US, the first bombing. But after allowing the NPN to allow more creative power to Harvey the second tour resulted in a higher note. By 1979 conservative elements of the Chinese government decreed this generation of youth a "Generation of Decadence", taking offense to the perceived immorality of the new, loud generation; predominately based in culture shock suffered by the less traveled or worldly members of government. A odd number of urban communes pass ordinances against the generation's "noise". Shanghai persists as the cultural capital of the new generation, with Hong Kong being it's film-based cousin.
Trade between Ethiopia and China also introduce other exotics to China. Albeit not to the degree of less limited exchange between China and the US.
GHH-1 is replaced by GHH-2. Although the original design had not been tested beyond its recon capabilities a number of hardware changes were made to simplify and lighten the aircraft, as well as a number of technical adaptations to its engines to allow for more climb. It is no where near the sub-orbital craft its current minister of Space and Science had - Henjibou - had hoped for. But it is never-the-less refined; if unproven tactically.
Tensions over India are cooled.
-South Africa breaks from ACE. Tensions between the two African powers arise over the status of Zambia and Tanzania. Both forces station troops on their borders in case of conflict.
-Royal wedding is held in the beginning of October in order to coincide with election season. Yaqob and Taytu married.
-In October, the first election is held under the 1976 constitution. Fitawrari Iregi is chosen as Senator General and leads the Anti-Imperialist faction majority.
-Plebiscites are held in Zambia and Tanzania. Zambia breaks from ACE and joins South Africa. Tanzania is split by the decision, causing southern Tanzania to secede from the north and join South Africa as Mozambique. Northern Tanzania stays with ACE and the Ethiopians.
-Taytu adopts Olivier Gezi, an infant who was orphaned by the Katanga rebellion and maimed by Ras Hassan.
-Sahle joins the The Traveling Abyssinian Blues Band. He lets his hair and beard grow out to disguise him from anyone tracking him. The band ends up in Cairo, playing in local cafes and clubs
-At the end of the year, the Empress Azima announces her pregnancy.
-Ethiopia sends an ambassador to Armenia. Though officially a simple act of diplomatic recognition, the ambassador is a mid ranking Walinzi agent who operates as a liaison between the Walinzi and the NSS.
-Though slowed down by corruption and organized crime, a basic highway system further opens the nation. Commerce and industrialization follows.
-Chinese weapons began to arrive in Ethiopia, allowing it's military to become more up to date. To off-set the Chinese loans, Ethiopia grows more open to foreign investment.
-Walinzi presence grows in the Ottoman state in order to offset the growing Spanish and German presence in the region. Aid is funneled to separatist groups.
-Religious and nationalist inspired violence in Hejaz intensifies. The Ethiopian military presence is increased.
-Azima gives birth to boy. Prince Tewodros is born.
-The Ethiopian base on Pemba is finished. Training begins.
-Corruption and drug traffic causes many major cities to come under control of organized crime. Stretched and underfunded, the Ethiopian government fails to do much. This causes tension between the Parliament and Imperial power.
-Foreign investment, Chinese trade, and increasing infrastructure allows for a significant increase in industrialization. Cities grow bigger and the population booms. The growing urban culture puts pressure on agricultural output, leading to rampant starvation poor rural communities. Political tension increases.
-Sahle and his band is given a permanent job in the harem of an eccentric multi-millionaire English expatriate in Cairo.
-Increasing violence in Hejaz leads to martial law. By the end of the year, Ras Hassan is put in charge as temporary military governor of the region.
-Join Walinzi and Chinese IB training operations in Armenia begin to bear fruit.
-State funded archeological digs are promoted in order to increase national prestige and a sense of African history.
- Italian government, despite President Achille Cantazaro's opposition, approves measure that provides for the arrest of suspected Communists operating within the Republic. The measure grants sweeping powers to the Italian GOI to detain anyone indefinitely and without trial with approval from the Senate.
- The AIDS pandemic tears through Southern Italy. Following the example of Spain, the Senate approves measures allowing for the indefinite quarantining of homosexuals. Unlike in Spain, the process is not used for political reasons, as the law requires forensic proof of homosexual activity. It is decried by activists as a violation of privacy and, rarely used, quickly fades into obscurity.
- The pacification of Southern Italy continues. Despite the victory won in the North, loyalist holdouts effectively control Sicily, and the rest of the South is gripped in a state of anarchy, with local tribes and towns making their own rules. By the end of the year, the Italian Army has managed to effectively annex most of the South, but Sicily remains out of reach.
- The reforms of the Army are put into play for the first time. The new ranking system, based heavily on the Roman model, is decried by many as antiquated, but it garners the support of most of the Senate and is passed. Despite efforts to standardize military equipment, many soldiers use their own weapons and kit at this point in time.
- The invasion of Sicily is launched, the first trial of the new Italian Army. It is a major success; after concentrated landings at Akragas, the Army routed the remaining Federali twice, largely due to overwhelming air superiority provided by Batista's former planes. The last federal holdout, Palermo, surrenders in March.
- With Sicily secured, the Army is downsized, from a million men to a permanent volunteer force of roughly 300,000. This measure passes the Senate despite extremely vocal opposition from conservatives. Several Senators are arrested for brawling during the passage of this bill.
- The search for Aurelio Batista continues. The first of his contacts, a Swiss national named François Amar, is kidnapped by GOI operatives in Bern. He dies under intense interrogation without revealing anything, leading many within Italian intelligence to suspect that Amar was an innocent man. Documents later found connecting him to Batista vindicate the GOI.
-Italian electronics company Informatica Interno establishes an office in Istanbul and business relations with Ottoman computer companies. Italian economists deride the move as "pointless", with one critic saying that "computers are a one-way ticket to bankruptcy."
-Not really much happens because I got tired of writing. Same stuff as in 1978. Italian economy enters a period of growth and relative prosperity. Poverty rates in the South plummet.
Many small railroads continue to be built around Monrovia are and Sanniquellie mostly, with one railway under contruction to connect the two cities.
Several small border conflicts with the Ivory coast happen locally through out the year, leaving 14 Liberian Soldiers dead, and no civilian casualties. No action is taken.
President Tolbert imitates the "Northern Mining Act." in which the government subsidizes a rather large iron mine at Mt. Tokade. Hundreds, if not thousands of unemployed Liberians flock to the area for jobs.
Mt. Tokade becomes a bustling mining town that grows every day as the mines there continue to expand, the government quickly profiting off the cheap labor and large sums of iron mined. Many other mines start to open up in the area around Sanniquellie. Liberia becomes the 6th largest exporter of Iron in the world.
President Tolbert nationalizes the last remnants of Firestone Rubber in Liberia, effectively eliminating all American economic influence in Liberia. Tolbert immedietly expands the already substantial rubber infrastructure. Liberia becomes the world's 2nd largest rubber exporter.
Additional border conflicts with the Ivory coast lead to the death of Thomas Quiwonkpa, several others, including Samuel Doe, are injured.
The BR-20 becomes the standard rifle of the Liberian Army, despite being outdated, it is very cheap and easy to manufacture. Though, no factories have the capacity to construct the rifle. Tolbert plans to ask other nations, such as Brazil or England, to manufacture the weapon for Liberia.
The Iron mines in Northern Liberia continue to grow, Sanniquelie becomes a rather large city for commerce, it's population growing quickly to around 750,000. A railroad connecting the city to Monrovia finishes, allowing the Iron to be shipped to the Ports and exported much easier and cheaper. Liberia becomes the 3rd largest exporter of iron.
Unrest in the Military, lead by Samuel Doe, grow as the border conflicts with the Ivory coast grow. The lack of government action causing a great deal of dissent between many military leaders.
- Blanc negotiates in China, supplies sent to Finland (already cleared this with Aaron). Sven orders Blanc to remain in China for the remainder of the year. Finland buys a small office building in Beijing for later embassy usage.
- Kemi-Rovaniemi railway reaches 1/2 completion, Kemi-Kokkola line begins.
- Blanc signs treaty bringing Finland into the Third International as a founding member. Much rejoicing is had in Finland, and Blanc is made permanent ambassador to China. Miraculously, the plane carrying his staff doesn't crash. and the office structure in Beijing becomes the official Embassy to North Finland. Renovations begin.
- Railway from Kemi to Rovaniemi is completed, resulting in further rejoicing.
- Kemi expands into a larger town. Surveying begins to find more ore around the town and rail lines. Meanwhile, work begins on Finland's first major foundry in soon-to-be Kokkola.
- The Kokkola site is connected by rail to Kemi. Mining begins.
- Nikulainen is put in command of the Kokkola project. As per Sven's original agreement, 1/20 of everything smelted is sent back to China on the supply ships. Coal and more ore is found near the rail lines, and work begins to set up mining operations.
- The damage to Rovaniemi from the Finnish Revolution finally gets fixed.
- A state-subsidised assembly plant making trains and civilian goods is built in Kemi. A small town springs up around it, and soon the town is home to several thousand people.
- Blanc negotiates for a small shipment of firearms to be sent to Finland. Upon their arrival, they are taken to Rovaniemi and disassembled for study and modification for winter conditions. The two lead engineers on the project (successfully) lobby for a firearms manufacture plant to be built in Kemi.
- Fierce negotiations between the Prussian and Ottoman governments end in Prussia's favor, having taken advantage of the Ottomans' dire needs. Ultimately the Ottomans agree to supply Prussia with discounted oil until Prussian-supported Ottoman forces are successful in retaking the Erzurum region (and its precious oil fields). In addition - and as payment for Prussian support - rights to some Libyan oil fields are transferred to Prussian oil companies. Though greatly beneficial for the Prussians, tensions sky-rocket between the two, and harsh criticism aimed particularly at Prussia (and sometimes the Ottoman leadership) becomes common, eventually transferring over to the battlefield, where Prussians and Turk forces hold an uneasy alliance.
Prussian forces arrived shortly after the negotiations, quickly securing the coastal areas and subsequently crushing the fledgling Armenian industrial capabilities. This initial assault culminated with the launch of the Prussian-supported Turkish push for the city of Erzurum. Intense fighting ended with Prusso-Turkish victory and the city of Erzurum (along with a small portion of its oil-rich ground) was retaken. The Armenians responded with force (and the help of its allies, particularly the Ethiopian Walinzi) and the ground between Erzurum and Armenian-controlled Anatolia became a no-man's land of burning pipelines and shattered dreams. As a side effect, Polish involvement in the region is greatly diminished thanks to Prussian intervention - tensions rise.
(For reference, this is what the battlefield looks like:
- Red is Prussian/Turkish-controlled.
- Pink is no-man's land (the frontline)
- Grey splotches are oil fields
Harsh terrain, angry goat herders, Ethiopian saboteurs, and Turkish incompetence has left the frontlines stagnant.)
- Prussia abandons espionage efforts in Finland, choosing to focus elsewhere.
- Prussia marches into Austria with little resistance, proclaiming it part of the German state. What little resistance is encountered is swiftly crushed by Prussian forces and sympathetic Austrians in support of a united German people. Proving too troublesome however, were the then Austrian territories of Croatia and Slovenia. Rampant nationalism and often violent resistance to Prussian rule ends with Prussia granting the two states their relatively peaceful independence.
- Prussian relations with South Africa are strengthened. Trade is established and Prussia becomes a supplier of military goods. Prussian troops are stationed in South African bases with the purpose of monitoring the situation between South Africa and Ethiopia.
- Cultural enrichment programs and propaganda launched. Programs begin to surface with the aim of encouraging German unity and pride.
- Prussia invents the Precipice equivalent of Velcro (because we need it, goddammit)
- State-sponsored scientific exploration leads to the research and development for new rocketry technology.
Keeping to his promise, Frederick mobilizes Prussian forces against socialist Denmark. The brief campaign ends in Danish surrender and the subsequent rise of more right-leaning leaders, ending socialism and transforming Denmark into an ally of Prussia.
- The Ministry of Foreign Affairs starts preparing a peaceful annexation of Belarus and Lithuania by a plebiscite. Work begins on strengthening the diplomatic ties to both countries, preparing the needed documents and proposals to the goverments as well as giving an occasional bribe here and there and beginning a subtle campaing to persuade the locals to vote for joining the Slavic Union.
- Training of the paramilitary organisation in Russia ends. Adopting the name Home Guards, the force has only four thousand members, not nearly enough to fully police anything more than parts of Moscow and their homebase in Taldom. However, recruiting begins almost immediately; the vast majority of the recruits are men aiming for a job with a low but stable pay.
- The goverment enters a state of panic as Prussia deploys its military in Armenia. The Black Sea Fleet and Crimean airforce are put on emergency and readied for a counterattack, but the Poles soon realize their military cannot compete with the Prussian one, especially in the Black Sea theatre. Not willing to risk an open war, the Slavic Union backs down and searches for different solutions to the crisis.
- The Army Modernisation Programme continues, and receives a massive increase in funding due to Prussian interefence in the Middle East. The project has two main goals, standardising local design in all parts of the Slavic Union military and raising the country offensive power. The money is partly loaned and partly siphoned from various goverment projects such as industrialisation of Ukraine.
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs postpones annexation of Lithuania and Belarus until the Armenian crisis is solved. The Ministry tries reaching a compromise with its Prussian counterpart, but only manages to further strain the relations between the countries.
- Elections are held. As expected, Plawgo's Narodowa Parta Demokraticzna (National Democratic Party) and the Unia Chrześcijańska (Christian Union) once again earn the majority of votes, but the popularity of both drops. Most surprisingly, the Partia Socjaldemokratyczna (Social Democratic Party) experiences a stunning ressurection as 17% people vote for them, earning them 36 seats in the Deputy Chamber. The elections also have the highest participation in the history of the country, with 59% people arriving to the voting rooms.
- Having its access to Armenian coast denied by Prussia, Poland tries to find alternate routes to the country. A land convoy departs, but fails to reach its objective as it comes under frequent attacks in spite of all attempts at diplomacy, bribing and threatening the locals. Poti, a Georgian harbor town, remains the only way to ferry goods in and out of Armenia, but its capacity is woefully inadequate.
- The Army Modernisation Programme bears fruit. The airforce receives a new spyplane and an attack aircraft, providing more suitable planes for the roles than the interceptors and repurposed trainers used before. Production of new heavy APCs and tank destroyers begins, and a new tank and AA vehicle projects entered their finishing stages. For the navy, almost all the funds were put into redesigning and finishing the battleship Indomitable, for which Japanese (and possibly British?) shipwrights were consulted; plans for new aircraft carriers, titled "aviation cruisers", were also prepared. New cannons based on licensed Bofors designs are introduced. Attempts to adapt the RS-42 guided missile repeatedly fail, but a side project to convert it to an anti-tank weapon sees more success, spawning the RS-55 Warta missile. Development of equipment for infantry was repeatedly delayed to the point infantry gets nothing.
- The Russian Home Guards grow to almost 19,000 members and have a firm hold of Taldom and Moscow. Although the Guards are given old Ukrainian and Austrian weapons (acquired when Bohemia joined Poland), it still makes them the best equipped local force.
- South Africa breaks from ACE and finds itself at immediate odds with Ethiopia on the status of Zambia and Tanzania. Troops are deployed by both sides in case of war but South African VP Nelson Mandela negotiates a peaceful end to the crisis. Tanzania is split in half, the southern half rebranded as Mozambique. Mozambique and Zambia then unite with South Africa.
- Botswana and Zimbabwe, now islands in the middle of a united South Africa elect to join the Republic as well. South Africa now embodies literally all of the former southern nations.
- Major railways linking the new provinces are begun while the link to Angola is finished in record time.
- Communists in South Africa attempt to assassinate President Paul Redekker. In response the Republic grants him the ability to outlaw the Communist party and a witch hunt is begun for Communist supporters.
- Prussia and South Africa sign a "Weapons for Bases" style contract and the South African Defense Force is transformed almost overnight into a first world fighting force. Prussian troops are stationed at several South African bases.
- Rail links into the new territories are completed, their first cargos are troops deploying to guard the now massive border with Ethiopia.
- Jon Kapwepwe, formerly of the Katanga Commune, has found his place amongst railway workers in South Africa and has made many friends, some of whom have fallen in love with his tales of an anarchist state.
- Shots are fired between elements of the South African and French navies off the coast of Madagascar. French admirals are horrified to learn that the homegrown South African warships out range and out gun their own. No deaths are reported but one French gunboat is sunk.
- Reconstruction continues within the vast South African Republic. Foreign investment from Prussia, America, Canada, and Spain is encouraged.
- Relations with Ethiopia remained strained but cordial.
- Communism is ruthlessly hunted down by South African Secret Police though censorship of Communist writings is not enforced.
A Concise History of the Second Spanish Republic from 1977-1979 or Spain Does a Lot of Bad Shit for Three Years:
- Julio Zuraban reaches Bandar Abbas in Persia. He spends the next two years moving throughout the Middle East under guise of working as a French journalist to evade Spanish spies. During his travels, Zuraban spends time in Persia, India, Afghanistan and the Ottoman Levant and briefly visits Addis Ababa and the Ethiopian Hejaz.
- The Ministry of Health is given emergency permission to conduct mass arrests of avowed and suspected homosexuals in an attempt to curb the spread of a sexually-transmitted immune deficiency. Suspected gays are quarantined at a requisitioned mental health asylum at Arratzu, a small hamlet in the Basque Country outside of Guernica. Sotelo and his allies in the Senate quickly abuse this practice and arrange for the arrests of political rivals and dissidents.
- Negotiations with the Ottoman Turks alongside the Prussians allows Spanish corporate interests access to North Africa and the Levant. Manufactures of weapons and vehicles for the Ejercito and Fuerza Aerea including Armitage-Diaz are offered tax exemptions and other forms of subsidy in order to encourage the discounted sale of firearms and aircraft to the Ottoman army.
- After nearly a decade of constant drilling at the oil fields in Murzuq, the once-inexorable pockets of petroleum under the Libyan desert are revealed to have nearly run dry. Spain experiences a financial recession as share values of the Compania Petrolera Espanola plummet; several other European nations follow suit. The Rio Niger region quickly becomes far more important to the Spanish as the Compania redoubles its efforts to discover new oil reserves in Ottoman North Africa.
- Years of failure and disappointment for the Fuerza Aerea's rocketry program are vindicated when the radio-guided missile Zaratustra II succeeds at delivering a 500 lb simulated payload to within half a kilometer of a pre-designated target in the Mauritanian desert from the Arguin Proving Grounds some 170 miles away.
I lost everything underneath this line because I am an idiot, so here is an extremely brief summary. I'll expand on this later.
- Guijon conducts live human trials involving Kuru using brain samples recovered from New Guinea.
-Increased Spanish presence in Ottoman North Africa as Spanish oil and construction industries take root the Spanish sphere of the Ottoman Empire. Spanish vessels patrol Suez Canal, prompting Ethiopian action to stymie the Spanish.
- Earthmoving projects, such as decreasing the depth of the Strait of Gibraltar, continue at Tangiers as preparation for the Gibraltar Dam moves along.
- Sotelo's cocaine dependency worsens, causing bizarre mood swings and even more irritability. During a televised address, Sotelo gets so angry with flashing cameras that he knocks the podium over and storms offstage. The upper echelons within Spain's government decide Sotelo has become a loose cannon and formulate an assassination.
- The first of the impeller-powered gunships are deemed airworthy and handed to the Ejercito and Fuerza Aerea. Designated as the H-22 Serafin, the gunship is capable of flying deep into the stratosphere and cruising for long distances as well as taking-off and landing vertically. It is an ideal insertion/extraction platform capable of holding its own against fighters due to its maneuverability and heavy weaponry.
- Sotelo survives a crash plane landing upon arriving in the Italian Republic when the landing gear fails catastrophically. Later reports showed that the failure resulted from sabotage and several senators were found to be tied to the attempt on Sotelo's life. Twelve senators, Estado Mayor Velasquez, and a variety of others, are charged with responsibility for the assassination attempt and are hanged. Sotelo temporarily disbands the senate until their loyalty can be ascertained. When the Senate resumes, the entire Senate is comprised of Partida Reforma members who rubber stamp Sotelo's propositions into effect. Spain is effectively an authoritarian state.
- The Compania Petrolera drills exploratory wells in eastern Transjordania near the Persian border. While the company is officially drilling test wells within Ottoman territory, the wells are clandestinely drilled with a westward slant in order to probe the strata underneath Persian territory for oil deposits. While no oil is uncovered in the northern Arabian Peninsula, test wells drilled under western Iraq reveal a large deposit ~150 miles West of the Euphrates River.
- The efforts of the Ethiopian Empire to create instability within Northern Africa bear fruit. A variety of militant Islamic factions united in their desire to drive the Spanish infidel out of their homelands unite into a loose alliance of rebel muslim freedom fighters known as the Mujahideen. While active throughout North Africa, the Mujahideen's primary focus is Algeria and Southern Morroco.
- Widespread destruction of the rainforest throughout the Rio Niger to make room for sugarcane cultivation wreaks ecological havoc through the region. Spanish irrigation and deforestation have triggered explosive increases in the rate of desertification in the north. Diversion of rivers for sugarcane cultivation in the south of the country has caused Lake Chad to rapidly shrink. Naturalists in Spain and throughout the world decry the practices, but do little to stop the exploitation of the region's resources.
1977-1980 events in Sweden.Edit
-Albert Felix is elected Swedish Prime Minister after Birgit August is cast out with a vote of no confidence.
-Albert Felix increases popularity with sweeping improvements to the nations roads, plans are put in place to reactiveate 230 factories that while sturcturally sound have not been in use since 1918.
-A faked assasination attempt on Albert Felix allows him to gain even more public support in the formation of a Communism Investigation Council with sweeping powers, proposed to root out communist spies and sympathizers.
-The Line Plan is proposedand accepted by the Sweden party dominated Riksdag. It involves fortifying the border with North Finland through a series of garrisons and bunkers as well as re-erecting the razor wire fence that was torn down for trade some years ago. Otther aspects of the plan involve increaseing mandatory military service from 2 to 4 years.
-Church and state become closer with the appointment of a religious advisory council with a vote to sit in the Riksdag. This is heralded as a good step by the religious majority but the secular minority opposes it.
-Women's rights are looked at under the Morality Act and are curbed a small bit, unoffically this is to make drafting them easier.
-Naval patrols in the Baltic increase to an almost constant presence, several smuggleing ships are caught.
-Rebel groups have formed in opposition to the 'reforms' of the last 2 years, they have made various attacks against government and military institutions. They have been branded communist terrorist cells.
-An outstanding warrant is posted for Birgit Augusts arrest after he speaks out against the CIC for vilations of civil rights, he flees the country to Great Britian and is branded a communist traitor.
1.MI6 agents dispatched to Canada to begin their operation. Three of them live out of a business at which they sell fishing supplies while there, while the other gets a job in the government as a secratary, copying down any information about where they are holding Lawrence WIlliams she can manage, and then supplying it to the others.
2. Britain makes a deal with the US regarding the operation. The US agrees to help the agents escape Canada in exchange for holding Williams for future interrogation. US-UK relations are greatly improved at this point in time.
3. The king is introduced to a princess from the Netherlands, and begins courting her, as their marriage would help both countries in many ways. At this point, Britain also allies itself with the Netherlands.
4. Britain begins a project to fully modernize their navy, and essentially enacting http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naval_Defence_Act_1889
5. Plans to reintegrate Bermuda and the British Carribean islands are made, as well as discussion on how to reintegrate Australia, New Zealand, and Canada, among other former-British territories which are currently owned by others.
1. Using the information gathered so far, the agents in Canada begin to plan their freeing of Williams.
2. The Greek War is oficcially ended thanks to the agreement made at the Santander conference. Britain uses the reconstruction and rebuilding of Greece as their excuse to not play a larger role in helping Spain and Prussia.
3. Bermuda is reintegrated as a Crown Dependency of the UK.
4. Britain begins development of a new assault rifle, which will bring them up to par with the more powerful nations in Europe.
5. Irelands full integration into Great Britain in early 1978. This was followed by a small rebel group emerging, but the state and the rebels were able to negotiate terms without fighting. At this point, the country officially takes on the name of "The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland", where as previously the "and Ireland" was not included. The change also brought up conversation of a new flag being needed, but it was put aside for future discussion. Afterwards, various political parties for Celtic nationalism started to spring up, but for the most part were ignored.
6. After the recession that followed the lack of oil coming from Spanish companies, Britain grants BP permission to go through with a plan to check for oil on British soil.
1. Using forged documentation, one of the MI6 agents manages to secure a job as a pilot delivering supplies to the bunker where Williams is still being held. Due to security reasons, they plan the extraction a year from this point.
2. Tensions between France and the UK rise as disputes over who the rightful owners of Guernsey and Jersey are.
3. King Charles III oficially declares his engagement to Princess Hentrietta of the Netherlands. The marriage is to happen in Spring 1980.
4. Former musician and Politician David Jones declares his intent to run for Prime Minister in the 1980 election. Public support for him places him at 5% above current Prime Minister Christian Brent.
5. After about five months, BP has successfuly found multiple deposits along the coast of the North Sea. While only enough to help stabilize Britain, this has led to the belief that more oil may exist within the North Sea itself. At this point, Britain began planning projects to check the North Sea for possible oil. BP would begin checking the sea for oil in the summer of 1980. The UK also extended their territorial claims in the North Sea, in case the project is a success.
(Onland reserves reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_oil_and_gas_fields_of_the_North_Sea)
6. The Celtic Nationalist parties continue to grow in size. Unknown to the British government, these parties also begin meeting with members of the French government.
August: Negociations regarding India are engaged in Addis-Abeba between Persia and the Punarjanam movement on one side, and China and the UFI on the other.
September: An armistice is signed in India, troops retreat beyond a line 50 kilometers north and south from the demarcation line; prisoners are exchanged, civilian populations are allowed to return, a general amnisty of all forces having participated in the conflict is declared, all forces save the two main organizations are disarmed. Formal peace talks begin in Addis-Abeba.
-Concurrently to the Prusso-Armenian conflict, in which Persia stays short of sending troops, but contributes trainers, supplies and funds, the aid to the Syrian and Egyptian revolts is stepped up.
October: The Al-Adlab laws are finally voted on October 15th, ending the deadlock in the Majlis and allowing the governmental coalition to reform itself, after 6 months of case-per-case voting , organizing the privatization of the National Persian Car Manufacturer, Persian Television and Radio Company, Public Constructions Service, National Telecommunications Corporation, Persian Airways and Persian Mining Corporation, leaving only the Persian National Oil and Gas Company(SANOP), Persian Electricity Company, National Water Corporation and National Railway Company in government hands. In counterpart, the group lead by the Communist party obtained, in addition to the increase of the minimum wage to 5 rial and weekly hour-cap decreed several months prior, the creation of the National Agency for Employment(NAE), providing aid to the unemployed, and with the designated goal of reinserting them in the employment market, with the creation of an unemployment benefit of 100 rial per month; the establishment of the Bureau against Poverty, charged with organizing the aid to poor populations, mainly in terms of emergency food and basic supplies and job formation; the participation of their employees to the administration of the privatized companies, with an inalienable 25% of shares and votes shared between the workers; the adoption of severe anti-monopoly laws, specifically geared towards foreign takeover of local firms, forbidding any foreign-based company from owning over 49% of a persian company's capital, either directly or indirectly, and making all acquisitions of over 20% of a major national corporation's shares liable to being explicitely approved by the Secretariat of Economy.
-Julio Zuraban arrives in Bandar Abbas, and is placed under discrete supervision and protection from the ISIIS(Imperial Services of Intelligence and Internal Security). Later in the month, a resounding article revealing the spanish exactions on the Tuareg population in Murzuq is published in an ethiopian newspaper, causing much international consternation.
November: An institute designed to promote the persian language and culture worldwide, the Ferdowsi institute, is created, with the initial task of manning persophone teaching institutions and fostering ties between the local communities and Persia. The first institutes are opened in Iraq, Yemen, Turkestan, Afghanistan, Najd Kingdom, Ethiopia, and in Punarjanam-controlled India, with plans for expansion in all of Africa and the Middle-East, including the Holy Sultanate of Turkey and Spanish North Africa. Persian is already, at that time, the first foreign language taught in Iraq; the teaching of foreign languages is simultaneously made compulsory in the Dabirestan(High school, non-compulsory, ironically). The choice is between literary Arabic, Turkish, Urdu, taught in all or nearly all institutes of higher learning, as well, less well represented, Amharic, Chinese and French, and, present in only the most select schools, Spanish, English, Portuguese and Italian. The education system's budget is consequently increased, with a goal of 8% of the GDP spent on it by 1985, with a particular effort spent on improving the coverage of rural areas, with numerous subsidies and aids directed at peasant families to encourage them to enroll their children to schools, particularly girls.
-A scandal begins as news of lapidations of presumed adultery women in the Kurd Autonomous Regions and in Khurasan province spread, causing a major public outcry. The government announces increased police surveillance and education in the countryside, but its failure to enact any lasting reforms causes a slight slump in popular support.
-Tehran book fair, 2nd edition, gathering 37 authors, 13 Persians, 8 Ethiopians, 5 Indians, 2 Turkestani, 2 Turks, 1 Afghan, 1 Nepali, 1 Thai, 1 Indonesian and 1 Egyptian, up from 20 authors at the first edition. It recieves the government's official support, allowing it to obtain wide media coverage, both nationally and internationally, leading to an attendance of 6935 visitors over 6 days, up from only 1746 the past year. During the fair is unveiled the book "Marjan's voyage", by author Fatima Mehran, recounting the adventures of a twelve-year old persian girl, who, kidnapped, eventually travels the world and becomes a spy evolving in the highest spheres of power and money. The children's book becomes a huge hit first in Persia, selling 10,000 copies by late December, then the wider Middle-East and India, reaching a total of 180,000 copies by the end of 1978, a total never before reached by a children's book in the region.
December: A highway and railway-construction project is announced jointly by Persia and Armenia, connecting Tabriz to Yerevan, through Nakhichevan, and Tabriz to Van, through Orumiyeh. The financing is shared be the two nations, within a 80/20 proportion for Persia and Armenia, respectively, planned to begin by mid-1978 and to end in 1982, with planned routes to Erzurum and Trabzon after the reconquest of these regions.
-Sporadic fights along the Azeri-Persian border. Bandits cross the Aras, ravaging the farmlands along the river. Demands are made to the government in Baku, to no avail, due to chronic instability. 1000 Persian troops are sent across the border to secure the river fords. Galvanised by the show of force, pro-persian forces gain heightened visibility in the country, advocating for a reunion with the southern neighbour. Frequent demonstrations by pro-persian forces are violently repressed by the government; in the already weakly-controlled south, the government's control becomes even more tenuous; armed bands roam the countryside, vastly increasing crime incidents, stopped at the border by persian troops, and hence turning northwards for booty.
-Preferential Industrial Areas(PIAs) open in Dammam, Masqat, Sohar, Manama and Abu Dhabi, part of a wider investment project in Persian Arabia. The accent is placed on the petrochemical industry in Dammam, Manama and Masqat, the existing refineries in Dammam and Masqat being expanded, the import/export activities in Sohar, and the concrete industry in Abu Dhabi.
-Due to the Armeno-Prussian war, the flow of supplies to Armenia is greatly increased.
January: In a nationwide operation, the majority of the AAA's members, numbering a few hundreds, are captured on January 16th, on the fortnight of its planned general attack on Esfahan. In retaliation, the remaining members attempt to take over the Abadan refinery, resulting in a resounding failure costing the AAA most of its surviving agents. The persian authorities propose an amnesty in case of a general surrender, which the terrorist group turns down. It disappears thereafter, fleeing into the Afghan mountains; Percieving the peace offer as a failure to uphold Shi'a Islam, clerics stage public protests in the major cities, gathering up to 200,000 people in Tehran on January 29th, and urging the rural faithful to sign letters of protest sent to the central authorities.
-The Afghan sultan causes a diplomatic incident with Persia by justifying his refusal to accede to demands of a constitution by saying it would lead to the moral corruption widespread in Persia. Persia demands immediate apologies from the Sultan, which he refuses, and reiterates his remarks, adding that Afghanistan's superior moral stance would allow it to easily conquer Persia. The tribal chieftains salute his courage, whereas the urban traders worry for the bilateral commerce. In response, the persian government breaks diplomatic ties with Kabul, and announces the suspension of all trade and payments to Afghanistan, unless the parties involved renounce their allegiance to the Sultan. Faced with important renunciations in the western provinces, particularly around Herat, the Sultan is forced to make amends, even visiting Esfahan on January 28th, and forced to wait 5 hours before being recieved by the Shah. He leaves with the reiteration of Persia's wishes of friendship, but returns facing discontent from
both the urban bourgeoisie for his foolhardiness, and from the rural tribal leaders for his weakness.
-Plans for an expansion of the Abadan refinery's capacity to one million barrels per day are announced, from the plants's previous capacity of 500,000, due to be completed for november 1979.
-The Fereydoun Shah Qajar Architecture Prize is established, to be given to a living internatonal architect deemed to represent a form of excellence in his field, accompanied by a prize of 250,000 rial(10,000$). It is awarded to ethiopian architect Ioannes Lesuwe, one of the leaders of the so-called "Southern Classicist" movement, advocating the incorporation of tribal, non-european design and ideas to neoclassical architecture, who designed, among others, the Cairo Opera House of 1952, the New Delhi Grand Metro Station of 1956, or the mexican Museum of Precolumbian Art of 1965.
February: In order to improve Esfahan's infrastructures and facilities for the 1980 summer olympics, and due to the growing automobile circulation, which already saturates at certain hours the city's still small road network, a public transportation system is put into place, with 2 bus lines to be set up by May 1979, with 25 buses per line, and 2 more by May 1980, the goal being of 12 lines by March 1985; concurrently, the taxi fleet is planned to be expanded from 46 to 1000 vehicles, subsidised by the government, to be painted in green, white and red, the colors of Persia.
-Construction of a ring road begins, to limit truck circulation in the city center, with four double lanes, due to be completed by 1982.
-Works start on the first subway line in Esfahan, to be completed by June 1980, connecting the city center to the olympic facilities, with 11 stations. Another line is planned for January 1982, two for 1984, two for 1986, and four more for 1990.
-Islamic fundamentalists continue their anti-government mobilization, now extending their complaints to the presence of western places of corruption in the country, such as cinemas and bars, and above all condemning the sale of alcohol, which has become quite commonplace for foreigners, and from which locals are said to profit as well. On February 6th, two monster events are held in Tehran and Esfahan to call for the ban of alcohol and the end of human representation in the art, gathering 285,000 protesters in Tehran, and 153,000 in Esfahan. In reaction, the ruling coalition, led by the Party of Righteousness, votes a law on February 20th forbidding the sale of alcohol in the country, and limiting the quantity of alcohol brought by foreigners to 5 liters per entry. Special derogations are created for establishments which can prove they cater to customers who are over 75% foreign. Protests continue, claiming these permits will allow bartenders to corrupt unscrupulous officers.
March: After the controversial construction of the Bank of Persia tower in downtown Esfahan, whose 56 stories overshadow large parts of the historical quarter, and which caused the destruction of several historically recognized buildings, a ban on buildings over 15 stories is enacted within the city limits, following a significant mobilization of the Esfahani, as well as the islamist opposition, complaning of the destruction of the islamic patrimony. The government announces the creation of a Registry of Historical Monuments, the goal of which would be to list all buildings of historical, cultural or religious significance in the country, the destruction of which would be made illegal, and whose maintenance would be subsidized by the central and regional governments.
-A new party is created, the People's Islamic Front, whose platform consists of the vindication of the poor's interests, as well as the strict respect of Islamic law, in the continuation of the protests of the two past months. It organizes another march in the streets of Tehran on March 18th, gathering this time, according to the organizers', over 300,000 people, rising up against endemic corruption, rising social inequalities, impiety among the ruling classes, and accusing the Jewish and Zoroastrian minorities of subverting the moral order. After the march meets a communist counter-demonstration, insults are exchanged, leading quickly to a general brawl, causing over 500 deaths and 2000 wounded. The police, which intervened after only an hour of fighting, is accused by both sides of collusion with the other. The ruling Party of Righteousness comes under fire from both sides, and some of its members recieve death threats in their circumscriptions. The Shah, who had not made any mention of the protest movement
since its birth, finally makes a public call for peace and harmony. Despite his plea, street fights multiply, making the cities dangerous places to be at night.
-Complaints arise from the overuse of the Amu-Darya's waters for the cotton industry. The river's water, since February, do not reach the Aral sea anymore, and the shepherds which traditionally fed their flocks along the river are confronted with a dire problem. The issue conflates as Turkmens begin complaining of the primacy given to farsi economic interests, and the main ethnic group's control of most political, economic and cultural institutions. Attacks on "farsi colonialism" become more common and virulent.
April: The country's polarization between communists and islamists accentuates, as the former take the party of the minorities, youngs, women and the urban proletariat, marginalized by the government and establishment, whereas the Islamists are supported mostly by the rural populations, enraged by the percieved desislamization of the authorities, the increased role of the minorities, most of the time non-Shi'a, Sunni, Jews, Zoroastrians, Armenians, in the economy, percieved as taking the jobs and revenues of the farsi poors, and the increasing concentration of rural property in the hands of great landowners, the urban upper-classes, the old nobility and the enriched businessmen. Both groups seek social justice, but through different ways, the former by collectivization and modernization, and the latter by returning to islamic roots, leading to worsening instability, and most of all insecurity, the countryside and cities alike being flooded by protesters, sometimes turning to violence to show their discontent; both movements take possession of a judiciary case opposing a rich landowner of the Luristan province and twenty-eight of his tenants: the plaintives, citrus farmers, were accusing their employer Abbas Hafizi, one of the most important citrus producers of Persia, of raping the wife and daughter of one of them, then laying him off when the husband complained. When, a few weeks later, the affair dating back to November 1976, the other workers went on strike, in protestation of this affair as well as low wages and terrible living conditions, they were all laid off, and their families expelled from the village which was the property of the landowner. Following this, they complained to the local police, who dismissed their case as respecting labor laws. After this initial refusal, they returned a week later with several witnesses, who testified to the abusive lay-offs and practices of their employer, only to be rebuked once more, and even imprisoned temporarily, because of Hafizi's complaint that they were
preventing him from conducting his business, and were denying him his property rights. After their liberation, the twenty-eight brought the case before the court in Ahvaz, the provincial capital, alleging in addition violation of their fundamental rights by the forces of order. At this point, in February 1977, things began to degenerate, as agents of Hafizi intimidated the ex-workers, threatening their families of reprisals if they persevered in pursuing the case. In June 1977, the court declared the case void, Hafizi having paid people to certify that the workers had in fact arrived in Luristan from Iraq only in January 1977, and were known as thieves and embezzlers over the border. The case remained closed until March 1978, when Iraqi officials, upon the request of the workers, certified that they were not, and never had been, Iraqi citizens. After this, the case gaining national awareness, the affair was reopened, and brought this time before the Tehran Court of Justice, considered as the most senior court in Persia. This example, both groups argue, proves the corruption and dysfunctionnality of the justice system, and political system in general. But whereas the communists request the total refoundation of the justice system, with the complete redrafting of the law code, as well as the creation of a supreme court to defend the constitution and serve as a last and final recourse in such situations, the Islamists demand the transfer of the case to Doctors of Fiqh, Islamic jurisprudence, and generally speaking the extension of Islamic courts to all or most cases, with a stricter interpretation and application of the Sharia. Both groups advocate for land reform, and the break-up of the vast domains which characterize persian agriculture, especially in the irrigated, thus most fertile, lands. In one unique event, both the People's Islamic Front and the Communist Party of Persia demonstrate together in Esfahan, gathering a never-before-seen 500,000 people on April 26th. The government, panicking, announces the expulsion from the Order of judges of the judge in Ahvaz, as well as the replacement of the policemen involved in the abuses. These measures, far too superficial, spark further protests, judges being regularly aggressed, and police stations frequently vandalized throughout the country. Inspired by this, other victims surface, sharing their own stories of mistreatment by the justice, even more so in Persian Arabia, Kurdistan and Turkmenistan, where claims of instituionnalized racism are made.
-The first cases of an unknown auto-immune disease appear in Bandar-e Abbas, the main port of Persia, suspected to come from India or Ethiopia. The disease is impervious to all known treatments, and affects seemingly mostly homosexuals.
-As the war in Nagorno-Karabakh rages between the Armenian and Azeri armed forces, and violence begins spreading across the border, with thousands of refugees attempting to cross into Persia, the persian government issues an ultimatum to the power in Baku to cease all combats under threat of intervention by Persia to stabilize the situation at the border, on April 13th. Answered with a stern refusal, the Azeri government facing strong internal opposition from pro-persian groups, the persian army begins massings troups along the Aras river. Shortly thereafter, the president demanding emergency powers, the parliament dissolves itself on April 20th, plunging the country into chaos. The army keeps its positions, until April 22nd, when the presidential guard, upon orders, assaults a building where the pro-persian leaders were hidden, and from which they are airlifted after seven hours of siege by persian helicopters. One of them is shot down, prompting the persian army to cross the river, considering this an act
of war. In Baku, fightings break out between pro-persian and pro-turkish forces, the president being forced to flee to Daghestan on April 25th. After this, the azeri army dissolves, leaving the Armenians to reoccupy Nagorno-Karabakh.
May: Pro-persian forces having seized the parliament, the leaders of the movement are recognized as representatives of the Azeri people, and Baku is captured by persian forces on May 8th, and Ganca on May 15th. The reconvened parliament destitutes the president, calls for new elections, and dissolves itself anew. The new powerless president is extradited from Daghestan on May 23rd, and placed before trial for starting the war with Armenia. The last pockets of resistance surrender on May 30th.
-Anti-government protests continue, the Communists and Islamists dissociating once more. The Clergy declares the corrupt judges and policemen to be unfaithful, and justify their killing by any muslim. The Communists, on the other hand, begin the occupation of large properties. The Shah makes a speech on May 10th, declaring corruption and inequality as the main enemies of Persia, which the government will seek to purge as quickly as possible, but also calling for an immediate return to calm, fearing the return of civil war, which had ravaged Persia for over ten years during the reign of his father, Fereydoun Shah Qajar. The government elevates the penalty for abuse of power and corruption to death, starting by executing the judge in charge of the Hafizi affair on May 18th. Five police inspectors are similarly executed by fire squad on May 21st.
-Persian Airlines establishes direct flights between Paris, Berlin, Madrid, London, Stockholm, Rome, Milan, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Brussels, Vienna, Budapest, Athens, Algiers, Tunis, Tripoli, Alexandria, Cairo, Addis-Abeba, Lagos, Kinshasa, Cape town, Zanzibar, Dar-es Salaam, Mombasa, Khartum, Washington DC, Toronto, New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Bogota, Buenos Aires, Santiago de Chile, Mexico city, Caracas, Jerusalem, Samarkand, Tashkent, Kabul, Karachi, Lahore, Delhi, Ahmedabad, Allahabad, Varanasi, Calcutta, Dhaka, Bombay, Madras, Bangalore, Goa, Agra, Hyderabad, Colombo, Kathmandu, Jakarta, Singapore, Sydney and Melbourne internationally, and Tehran and Esfahan, the only direct routes up to then connecting these two cities to Istanbul, Baghdad and Herat, Istanbul serving as an international hub up to then towards Persia.
-Construction of a Liquid National gas terminal and fleet begins in Bandar-e Abbas and Doha, most of Persia's natural gas production being up to then wasted, due for Fall 1985.
June: The situation in Azerbaijan stabilizes, as pro-persian forces obtain the allegiance of the army. The persian army begins to retreat out of the country on June 15th. The interim government, represented by the Azeri League, declares its intention to demand integration into Persia if it is elected following the elections scheduled for July, promising a referendum at the same time.
-Several judges and police officers are killed in plain sight by islamist partisans, marked as corrupt by the ulemas, while a certain number of landowners are ousted of their properties by communists. Both movements clash often, especially as the Islamists begin creating enclaves where the Sharia is enforced strictly, reducing women's rights, freedom of speech and reunion, and expelling, sometimes imprisonning, all suspected communists. The government eventually represses both groups, sending in the army to return control of all alienated property to their owners, posting soldiers within the mosques, to control the imams' preaches, reducing all religious and leftist leaders' movements, arresting a number of them for incitation to murder. The parliament suspends the freedom to reunion for a duration of one month. Simultaneously, the authorities crack down heavily on corruption, suspending most police forces, for them to be inspected, and replacing them by the army, as well as employing the secret services, the ISIIS, to find all proofs of illegal money being given to representatives of the State or of Justice. Over 18,000 people are arrested, 12,000 imprisonned, and 108 executed, after a short trial. Many activists decry the obvious violation of basic rights.
July: Elections are held in Azerbaijan on July 19th, yielding a comfortable majority of 57.45% to the Azeri league. The referendum on the integration to Persia gives a much smaller majority, of only 52.85%. As a result, Azerbaijan becomes only an Associate State of Persia, with border restrictions abolished for citizens, the tax system harmonized, finances and the foreign policy supervised by Persia. This status is to be maintained for a duration of five years, the time necessary for the most significant laws to be reviewed and for the first effects to be seen, time after which a new referendum will be held, this time for complete integration into Persia, with a special status as Associated State. Plans are announced for a highway connecting Tehran to Ardabil and Baku, then to Ganca and Yerevan, with an oil pipeline similarly connecting Baku to Yerevan, then, Trabzon, after the reconqest of the city. A policy of national reconciliation with Armenia is initiated, as cultural exchanges are encouraged between the two countries.
-State repression of corruption continues, as a further 6,000 people are arrested. Freedom of reunion is reestablished, with special limitations however, until the end of the year, the time for the operation to conclude. Communists and Islamists immediatly resume protests, but refrain from reinitiating violent actions. Silent marches are made in the streets of the major cities daily, to protest against the violence of the government. The Shah calls for the people to accept sacrifices for the moment, in order for the country to be purged of its worst elements.
-After the noted interception of 100 tonnes of opium crossing the Afghan border, the State also initiates a crackdown of opium smoking, already illegal, but long a popular pastime in Persia. Islamists and Communists like approve, but claim it is a distraction for true societal reforms. Regular army searches, the police still being under a general verification, are made in schools and work offices, as well as in coffee and tea rooms, often hiding opium smoking rooms. A few hundred people, mostly street vendors, are arrested.
-The national industry's production of iron, steel, coal and coke reaches respectively 3.6, 1.5, 1.9 and 1.4 million tons, up from 2, 0.7, 1 and 0.8 in 1975, and are slated to be expanded to 5 million tons of iron, 3 million tons of steel, 3 million tons of coal and 2.5 million tons of coke by 1980.
August: Establishment on a Medecine faculty in Tehran, Esfahan, and Shiraz; Creation of an Asian Studies, that is East Asian, Chair, at Tehran and Esfahan Universities.
-Construction of the Museum of Contemporary Arts starts in Tehran, due to be completed for early 1983.
September: Ties with Ethiopia are strengthened, as plans for a highway connecting the East Coast of Arabia to Mecca are discussed. Construction is planned to start in early 1979, and should last until 1985.
-Support to Syrian and Egyptian rebels is increased, as guerilla movements gain control of Deir-es-Zor in Syria, and Siwa oasis in Egypt. Supplies and weapons are sent through Iraq and Ethiopia, helping to intensify the pressure on the Ottoman authorities, attacks of governmental convoys becoming increasingly common, as well as small-scale urban warfare in the major cities, such as Alexandria, Cairo, Luxor, Aswan, Port-Said and Suez in Egypt, and Gaza, Jaffa, Jerusalem, Jericho, Beirut, Damas, Hama, Aleppo and Antakya in Greater Syria.
-The year having been extremely dry and warm, with temperatures of 22C recorded in February in Tehran, the wheat and rice harvest are catastrophic, less than half of the quantity on usual years. The government guarantees a fixed sales price to shopkeepers, and promises to pay the difference with the market price, also covering all wheat and rice importations. Nevertheless, the price of these two commodities, as well as other, less vital foodstuffs, increases by over 10% at the base, causing wide discontent, and reigniting claims of corruption.
October: The radio drama "In the harem" becomes an international hit. Recounting the problems of the Midani, an upper-class family in Mashhad, it gains a wide public throughout the Islamic world and India, particularly in Iraq, Turkestan, Egypt and Arabia.
-The second private TV channel, Channel 4, is launched, covering national and international news, and mostly showing farsi dramas and talk-shows. Persia counts around one million TV sets at this time.
-The Chief Police Inspector of Asghabat, is forced to step down, and is brought before trial.
-The first cases of the unknown immuno-deficient disease are reported in Esfahan and Masqat, with exclusively homosexual victims.
November: The Tehran Book Fair is organized for its third edition, gathering 98 authors, 34 Persians, 18 Ethiopians, 12 Indians, 8 Turks, 4 Iraqi, 3 Indonesians, 2 Egyptians, 1 Armenian, 1 Turkestani, 1 Afghan, 1 Nepali, 1 Yemeni, 1 Moroccan, 1 Nigerian, 1 Congolese, 1 Brazilian, 1 Mexican, 1 Haitian, 1 Japanese, 1 South African, 1 Malgash, 1 Malaysian, 1 Thai and 1 Liberian. Over 6 days, it is visitd by 18,047 visitors, three times the past year's attendance, thanks to increasing international visibility.
-The Shahbanu's pregnancy is announced, and the delivery planned for 6 months later, in April 1979.
December: The first edition of the Tabriz Movie Festival is organized, with a focus on international movies, both western and non-western. From the onset, it knows quite an important success, showcasing well over a hundred films, both arthouse and popular. The most noted is "My dear Ali", portraying the life of a young boy, Ali, living in a slum around Kerman, who supports his family by smuggling women's undergarments into the neighbourhood, highly controlled by a rigid imam, for the local export business of "french" lingerie to India. The completely farcical movie ridicules most ideological figures in Persia, from the Islamists, to the Communists, derided rather cruelly in one scene where a man tries to start a revolution in the street, only to be knocked unconscious by an old lady whose only son was imprisonned by the government for occupying a rural property, and even the Shah, whose portrait, omnipresent in the city due to an imminent visit, is used after as wall-paper, mocking Ali Muhammad Shah Qajar's
omnipresence in the persian popular imagery. Despite a scandalized reception by the religious and political figures targeted, the Shah, declaring the movie "terribly amusing", defends it and authorizes its public showing. It immediatly becomes a national hit, being seen by 2,4 million viewers, a record, then gaining widespread success in the Middle-East, Africa and India, three places where the growing persian cultural industry is gaining mainstream success, particularly in the Middle-East and India, physically and culturally close to Persia. Esfahan, center of the burgeoning movie industry, with support from the Shah himself, is beginning to be called Pollywood, from Persia and Hollywood, producing over 50 movies annually.
-The restaurant "Behistun tables" in Tehran is the first in Persia to ever recieve five stars from the Michelin guide, and the first indeed in the whole Middle-East outside of Istanbul, warranting the elevation of the chef to the Order of the Sun and the Lion by the Shah.
-The government finances a worldwide advertisement campaign to promote tourism in Persia, trying to erase the negative perception of the recent instability, vaunting the renewed security in the country, the hospitality of its inhabitants, the refinement of its culture, and placing the focus on both the millenial patrimony of the country, around Susa, Persepolis and Pasargades, Bam, Esfahan, Tabriz, Merv, Behistun, Qazvin, Tus, among others, as well as showcasing Persia's modernity, mentionning the active arts scene, cinemas, art galleries, theatres and operas all attracting internationally recognized artists and performances. An accent is also placed on the favorable climate in the West and North of the Country, particularly in Shiraz, renowned for its many and historical gardens, and Rasht, which benefits from the temperate influence of the Caspian Sea, encouraging Europeans and Americans bored by the Mediterranean to spend the winter in Persia, where desert escapades, ski outings, bathing in 20.C water in
January and rainforest exploration is all possible in the same week. Over the next year, Persia registers 1.09 million tourists, up from only 605 000 in 1978.
January: Plans for a railway connecting Esfahan and Tehran to Baghdad are announced, with construction beginning in early 1982, slated to be completed by 1990.
-A children's adaptation of the Shahnahmeh is launched on semi-public Channel 2. Benefiting from a promotion campaign on public radio, in newspapers and on TV, it quickly gains a large viewership, images of its main characters becoming popular exchange cards for children, reaching a much wider public than just the television viewers. The Shah salutes the show's attempt to popularize persian myths, and bring the country's rich culture to its youth. It also recieves wide notice for its new type of animation, very different from traditional western imagery, inspired in large part from the indo-persian tradition of miniatures, with very vivid and pure colors, and characters seen in profile and from above. Many critics make mention of Persia's renewed cultural dynamism, patent to the growing appeal it presents abroad, most Iraqi, Turkestani and Afghan television shows now coming from Persia, oftentimes untranslated, and even the huge Indian market welcoming over 10% of persian-language Tv programs, in Muslim and
Hindu regions alike.
-The persian government issues formal protestations of the Gibraltar dam project led by Spain, saying it would terminate all maritime transit, specifically oil tankers, vastly increasing time and cost for persian oil to reach the develloped world, and furthermore accusing it of killing off the Mediterranean's culture, economy and landscapes by this move. Verbatim, the First Delegate of the Cabinet claims Spain is imposing its domination by "imperialism of the map, attacking states in their very fabric, the land which nurtures and the sea which brings life, using its technology and geographic advantages to break the timeless balance of the Inner Sea, with no regards for the needs of other men than its own." The speech meets unanimous approval in Persia, both the Islamists and Communists saluting the defense of the country's interests and refusal to yield before the Western powers, but eliciting Spain's anger, as it dismisses Persia's intervention as unwarranted intervention in Spain's inner affairs, and announcing the continuation of the works regardless.
-The Fereydoun Shah Qajar Architecture Prize is awarded to Russian Grigori Gyudin, theorist of "Conflictual" architecture, which advocates movement in buildings, apparent dynamics and structures, in phase with the ever-evolving, changing, and terribly violent contemporary world. His best known works are the Houston Stadium, famous for its spider-net patterns and lattice structure showing elevators, tubes and stairs, the Johannesburg DeBeers tower or the Warsaw St Mary of the Annunciation church.
February: Abbas Hafizi is acquitted, reigniting the dispute. Allegations of corruption resurface, with further critics that the government repression campaign is either ineffective or just a screen of smoke. The Shah, under popular pressure, the Communists threatening to organize a general strike, and the Islamists to denounce the entire government as takfir, apostate, opens an investigation on the government and Majlis itself, to find the traces of illegal practice at the source of power. The Communists set up a permanent protest camp in front of the Majlis and Imperial Palace, while the Islamists organize the similar occupation of the Naqsh-e Jahan square, both in Esfahan.
-Two newspapers are founded, the "Popular Iranian daily", and the "Voice of the Faithful", official information organs of respectively the CPP and the PIF, in preparation for the upcoming electoral campaign. The two parties also announce their latest membership figures, for January: 1.4 million for the CPP, and 0.6 million for the PIF, arguably much more recent, compared to 0.3 million for the ruling Party of Righteousness. By the end of the month, the daily sales of the two newspapers show a much closer standing, as the Popular Iranian Daily is sold to an average of 3.1 million copies, versus 1.6 million for the Voice of the Faithful, which, given the more rural supporters of the PIF, and hence the lesser literacy rates, means a public at least as big as that of its main competitor; the two parties also extend the coverage of their radio channels.
March: The government announces the result of its anti-corruption campaign, which resulted over the course of the nine past months in 48,000 arrests, 37,000 condemnations to prison and 2,000 death sentences. Police salaries are increased by 20% to improve the remuneration and loyalty of its members to the State.
-Results from the investigation on th deputies and government members leak, revealing damning proofs of abuse of power, especially in the Party of Righteousness, but also the Azeri People's Party, Kurd Bock and Great Turkmenistan Party, all part of the ruling coalition. Several Secretaries are also involved. The Shah asks for the final results to be announced before any action to be undertaken, but the opposition begins obstructing normal parliamentary procedures, engaging in votes of no-confidence on a weekly basis. The ruling coalition begins breaking apart, as each party accuses the other of corruption, themselves breaking down as the still-unscathed politicians try to distance themselves from the suspected ones.
-The prices of basic commodities further increase, for wheat, chickpeas and rice by over 2% monthly, as foreign exporters increase their tariffs, given the political instability of the country, which might prevent payments in later times.
-The electoral campaign for the parliamentary elections in July begins, the two main opposition formations calling for the ousting from power of the governing parties, in power since 1971, totally incompetent and corrupt, working for the interests of the privileged and not those of the people. The theme of the campaign, from both the CPP and PIF, is the resolution of social inequalities and the total destruction of the feudal regime, still in place, at least in practice, in the countryside; The PIF accuses the CPP of being controlled by foreign interests, specifically China and Armenia, revealing the supposedly Armenian, Jewish or Zoroatrian ncestry of the key figures of the party, and their supposed ties abroad. The CPP, on the other hand, attacks the PIF of perverting the persian spirit, spreading intolerance and hate, particularly of the many minorities of Persia, which constitute around 50% of the total, as well as violating the fundamental rights of mankind, being against freedom of worship, of expression, and even equality before the law, that in short it is opposed to democracy, and would try to suppress it if it came to power.
April: The first results of the investigation are made public, involving well over half of the parliamentaries, and quite a few number of secretaries and under-secretaries, prompting the Shah to call for a change of cabinet. Only the Secretary of Foreign Affairs, of Defence, of Public Health, of Culture and of Education remain, the Great Turkmenistan Party and the Azeri People's Party leaving the governmental coalition; the opposition calls for anticipated elections, but the Shah, contending they are near, refuses. The Party of Righteousness, under fire from all sides, internally splits between the conservative, more islamic tendency, and the liberal, reformist faction, making Majlis sessions even more of a mess, with MPs of all parties indiscriminately accusing one another, small fights over one's honor rather frequent.
-The governmental grants for studies abroad aid over 50,000 students worldwide, while nationally, the number of university students is in constant increase, reaching 120,000 of all kinds except religious in 1978, from less than 50,000 in 1970(check real figures).
-A small ceremony is organized to celebrate the birth of Maryam on April 6th, the first child born to the Shah and Shahbanu.
May: 56 of the PR's 148 deputies renounce to pursue reelection, while the political scandal continues, every day revealing new affairs with company owners or landowners.
-The electoral campaign enters a new phase, as the two opposition parties set themselves the goal of visiting and recording the wishes of every single village and neighbourhood in Persia, distributing countless flyers and starting spontaneous demonstrations in the cities, and transmitting their programs with the huge sheep and goat herds crisscrossing the country in the rural areas. The more established parties, the PR most notably, use the newspapers, radio and television to spread their programs. The PR, in particular, to improve its image, expels all its most notoriously corrupt figures, which even their positions could not save, and pledges to publish its fiscal reports and those of its politicians every month. Despite these measures, and the focus of its campaign on reducing social inequalities and improving daily life by expanding electricity, water, health and education coverage, its popularity continues to fall, reaching 15% only of vote intentions, from the 44% it recieved in the 1975 elections.
-Esfahan municipality joins the surrounding rural villages to form the "Greater Esfahan Metropolitan Area", to coordinate urban growth and devellopment projects on a larger scale; several Special Devellopment Areas are created in the outlying lands to circumvent the ban on highrises in the city proper. The tallest tower in Persia, built for a consortium of national and international companies, with a planned height over 400 meters is planned in one of the SDAs, due to be started by early 1980, and inaugurated for the bicentennary of the dynasty, in 1985.
June: One case of the mysterious immuno-deficient disease is declared in Tehran and Qom.
-A resurgence of the bubonic plague appears in Turkmenistan, purported to have been bought from India through Afghanistan. The diseases's progression is only stopped after it reaches Tabriz and Yazd, just short of Esfahan, through drastic quarantine measures and public sensibilization campaigns. Although causing only 102 infections all in all, the country is profoundly scared and shocked; many accuse the terrible living conditions in the slums surrounding most major cities to have contributed to its reappearance and at first unchecked spread.
-The Party of Righteousness criticizes both opposition parties for being irresponsable and incapable of ruling the country effectively, as they have no practice of government and unrealistic projects, presenting itself, cleansed of its worst elements, as the only major force capable of commanding international respect and holding its engagements to the people; furthermore, it claims both of them will undermine democracy if elected, removing all power from the hands of the people.
-Several persian companies merge to form Domos, a home-appliance company, producing television sets and accessories, radios, light bulbs, ventilators, vacuum-cleaners, washing machines, and others. From the onset, it is the number one national producer, with the stated goal of allowing the greatest number of Persians to gain access to such appliances by drastically reducing prices, its multiple factories being regrouped and expanded, chain-production and low stocks being used as further cost-reducers, and increasing reactivity by monthly visits to randomly-selected households to enquire on their needs and desires. One of the company's first projects, seeing the vastly different needs between the West and the ex-colonized world, is to put on the market water-purifiers and mobile, fuel-powered electricity generators. Domos also seeks expansion abroad, marketing, as a test, its village-utilities in Iraq and India.
July: The parliamentary elections of July 8th completely alter the political game, the Communist Party of Persia being the first formation, with 36.75% of votes, giving it 124 seats of 339, the Party of Righteousness coming in second, having achieved a significant increase in popularity in the two past months, bringing in 26.16% of votes, or 89 seats, then the People's Islamic Front, with 19.5% of votes, or 66 seats, then the Azeri People's Party, with 4.45%, that is, 15 seats, then the Kurd block, with 3.96%, 13 seats, the Party of the Republic, 3.2%, 11, the Great Turkmenistan Party, 2.37%, 8 seats, and the remaining 3.61% and 13 seats spread among several small parties. The Communist Party, despite its large score, nevertheless being in a minority, declines forming a government, leaving the Party of Righteousness to form a coalition, which it does with the PIF and Kurd block, gathering a minority coalition of 168 of 339 seats, or 49.56% of the Majlis. The Shah accepts the coalition, but the government must painfully negociate for nearly every major piece of legislature, convincing other MPs on a case-by-case basis to vote for it; on July 19th, the CPP reveals hidden evidence from the government report on political corruption, compromising the Mullahs, alleged to have abused of the workers of their huge land properties, and in general of having used their positions to protect their privileges. The CPP calls for the holding of anticipated elections within the coming month, which the government refuses, while the Shah does not express his opinion on the matter. The day after the biggest demonstration in persian history in Tehran, on July 25th, gathering one million protesters, among which, analysts observe, not only workers and farmers, but also low-level clerics, tired of and betrayed by their incompetent hierarchy, shopkeepers, complaining that the chaos induced by the politicians' inability to govern adversely affects their businesses, women fearing a reduction of their still limited rights, students,
minorities, generally speaking all the smallfolks, not necessarily radical but completely fed up with politics, the Communists succeed in voting a motion of no-confidence by gathering all the opposition parties, plus a few PR, PIF and KB deputies, sensing that a refusal would lead to much graver troubles, and that the current movement was the sign not just of discontent, but of the end of the previous social order. By 182 votes for, 115 votes against and 42 abstentions or absences, the government is toppled, and elections called for August.
August: The Communists, leading a disheveled alliance of liberal clerics, women's rights activists, workers, students, farmers, small shopkeepers, minorities, republicans and even progressive bourgeois, win the August 19th elections by a huge margin, taking in, with their allies, who most often did not possess any party up to now, 67.09% of the votes, handing them 227 seats of 339, the PR gathering most of the opposition,the APP, the KB and GTP in the face of the leftist surge, taking in 28% of votes, 95 seats, the 4.91% remaining being left to the PIF, the most direly affected by the scandal. The Shah, quite without choice, leaves the head of the CPP to form a government, while the whole world observes, fearing that the rest of the Middle East will be swept by the marxists. Ibrahim Banjad, the First Delegate of the Cabinet, himself part Armenian, part Arab and part Farsi, declares in a memorable speech that "for the first time, a socialist party has acceded to governmental functions through the choice of the ballots", guaranteeing that the ballots which had allowed the people to express itself would be preserved, and that democracy and free speech would never be attacked in Persia. Faced with international pressure, the value of the rial collapsing on world markets, the CPP, divided in several competing factions, the first, comprising the original founders of the party, being for pure marxism, and a swift passage of theory to practice, being the most vocal and the second, more liberal and less dogmatic, advocating for a more progressive way, complete with an alliance with capitalists to reach a first situation of equality before the passage to socialism, then communism, competing fiercely, this more open, flexible, and in fact popular branch quickly gaining control, quickly reassures the world by declaring that no institutions would be touched without the explicit and reiterated consent of the people, and that free trade would be allowed to continue as before, only with tighter surveillance. To back its claims,
the party formally terminates its demand to join the ASB and Communist International, and removes all of its agents from other communist-controlled countries.
September: The government opens another lawsuit against Abbas Hafizi, providing all pieces of evidence which had up to then been hidden. He is sentenced to death, but as a show of good faith, the government encourages the Shah to commute the sentence to life imprisonment, and a significant increase of the indemnity given to the plaintives. Following the fulfillment of this popular demand, the government begins major reforms, taking anti-corruption measures much farther than the previous one. Firstly, 9 High Courts of Appeal are created, one for each of the Appeal circuits created, regrouping several provinces, each composed of 5 judges named by the provincial governments for 10 year terms, who must be approved by the electors. A Supreme Court of Justice is also formed, composed of 9 judges, one coming from each of the Appeal Circuits, proposed by the central government and approved by the High Courts of Appeal, and which would serve as the court of last recourse for affairs concerning the State or its representatives, serving in addition as the guardian of the constitution, having the last say in terms of laws voted by the government, even having the power to strike down laws already voted. At the provincial level, State Attorneys are to be elected, while at the local level, judges are to be named by the Secretariat of Justice, according to a rotating schedule changing every ten years, the home province of the judge always being excluded. Salaries across the board are increased. Similarly, local police inspectors must be elected by the citizens for four year terms, at the same time as parliamentary elections, with regular inspections from the Secretariat of Justice as to the quality of work, inquired from local citizens. A law is passed granting full police protection to whistleblowers, and making it a crime worth 10 years of prison to intimidate one, and the capital penalty in the case of his purposeful murder. No representatives of authority, be they policemen, judges, MPs or simple government employees, are to recieve any sum of money from a source other than a family member or the government, with monthly reports obligatory. In counterpart, the salary is increased by another 10%. A National thics Committee is created, independent of all other branches of the government and under the direct authority of the Shah; to pay for the additional expenses, the price of oil and gas in increased by 7.5%
October: The Majlis adopts the Leila Mahdan laws, from the name of a women's rights activist assassinated in late 1978, authorizing divorce upon the instigation of the wife, additional ownership and inheritance rights, abortion up to ten weeks and prohibiting polygamy. Islamists protest, only for the "Universal, Equal and Progressive Taxation Act" to be passed on October 19th, abolishing tax exemptions for the clergy and applying progressive rates to the totality of the population, including the nobility, who had for a long time had very low tax rates, from a minimum of 1% for the lowest income bracket to a high of 67% on the highest revenue bracket, counted on all revenues in or towards Persia, and not solely salaries; following this, on October 26th, the "Universal and Democratic Health Act" is adopted, establishing a system of paid health care for the population, specifically the poor.
-The government increases the border tolls to 15% of the total value of the goods, from 10% previously. The Secretariat to Women's Rights is created on Otcober 10th, and, ten days later, the Secretariat to Equality, in charge of fighting discriminations of all kinds, except based on gender.
November: Persia and Armenia form a customs union; ties are reinforced, as bilateral trade is greatly increased, and student exchanges are organized.
-After the assault by acid of a woman accused of adultery in Persian Arabia, the culprit is arrested and sentenced to death. Gender-equality programs are introduced in the educational curriculum.
-Just as the auto-immune disease reaches Tabriz, the Fahedrian laws depenalize and legalize homosexuality.
-The government announces a five-year plan to expand drinking-water coverage to 50% of the population, from around 30%, electricity coverage to 40%, from 17%, the availability of at least one doctor for 60% of districts, and finally the attendance of 50% of children aged 5-15 to school at least twice-weekly. To show its support of free enterprise, it opens a bidding for the electricity and water network expansions.
-The Majlis adopts the "Land Redistribution Act", prohibiting individual properties of over 10,000 acres, and requiring all properties over 100 acres to be at least 50% owned by the farmers.
-The Tehran Book Fair takes place for its 3rd edition, showcasing this time 248 authors, of which 185 are foreigners, and attracting 36,493 visitors.
December: The Tabriz Film Festival's 2nd edition is a great success, showing 302 movies, of which 260 are foreign.
-On Channel 4, alonside the Shahnahmeh, an adaptation of the "Thousand and One Nights" is launched, once more in this very peculiar style derived from traditional persian art forms. Its viewership, as its forerunner, goes far beyond Persia, especially as the subject matter is common to the entire Indo-Islamic civilization. The Channel sells rights to it from Morocco to Indonesia, as well as, surprisingly, in Bulgaria, where the Muslim Community represents over 15% of the population.
-The Shah, in a very public speech, recognizes his failure to hold together the country during the years 1978-1979, during which Persia nearly fell into civil war, realizing that one person cannot decently rule over an entire people, proposes a new constitution, where the Shah would devolve most of his current powers to an executive power based on a much stronger legislative one, composed of two national chambers, to increase the accountability of the government and prevent abuses like what happened in the past decade, during which, he says, "the old and sclerotic persian society was confronted far too rapidly and brutally to the modern world, accelerating its long-foreseen demise". Adding that "it is time for the people of Persia to care for itself", he expressed his wish that the people gather behind the Imperial Family as its eternal standard, but that it not be blinded by it as it advances on its own, with the assurance of the flag's protection and inspiration in times of need. He ends with the hope that the new constitution would embody the spirit and desire of the persian people to unity and equality in diversity and democracy.
-The Majlis begins discussions on the new constitution, deciding from the start to make it a secular one, without public patronage of any religion.
-The government announces a plan to improve the living conditions of slum-dwellers, by replacing them when possible with public housing complexes; the plan is to take place over 10 years; another five year plan is announced to devellop mass-production of fertilizers derived from petrochemicals, in order to reduce the growing food insecurity; public aids to expand irrigated agricultural land, with a goal of 75% of the total in 1983 are also announced; the opposition accuses the government of destroying the public finances painfully stabilized over the past decade, and demands an audit of public spending.
-Folk bombing in Norway continues. The main targets seemed to be banks, government buildings, public places, homes of government officials and army barracks. A recurring feature in the bombers are that most are suicide bombers, they are usually Norwegian-born Finns and shout Finnish phrases before letting their bombs off. The NWD has cracked down on the Folks, although it seems the leaders have fled the country, most likely to the Russian states.
-The government begins a rural electrification project. It is planned that almost every home in Norway will have some form of electricity by 1983. The government has also began looking into hydroelectricity as a cheaper and more efficient way of producing mass electricity in Norway and perhaps the rest of Scandanavia.
-Gunsmiths and designers in the Isfjell Company are pressured to begin work on a new range of weapons after a major design flaw is discovered in the Isfjell NW-72 range of weapons.
-The Odin Recreation and Sports Centre in Oslo was finished on Novermber 23 and opened by a sickly King Albert I. Teenagers are encouraged to take up a sport to become the 'atheletes of tomorrow'.
-An attempt is taken at the life of Prince Andor while he is giving a political speech in Trondheim. He is shot in the shoulder and is rushed to hospital. It is announced several days later that several bones in his shoulder and collar bones were fractured but the heir to the Norwegian throne was making a speedy recovery. Politicians don't appear in public for several weeks afterwards for fear of being shot while the NWD hunts down the assassin.
-In response to the Line Plan by the Swedish, the government begins to fortify the Norway-North Finland border with wire fences, bunkers and army checkpoints. The project is an overall failure, as a large chunk of the border is left unattended.
-A new tax demands money from non-Christian churches. A few mosques and synagouges are closed as a result and a few people take to converting their homes into private places of prayer.
-Agnar Arve is reported to have punched a member of staff and to have a nervous breakdown in his office towards the end of the year. His deterioating mental state causes concern in the cabinet. When asked about it, Agnar would go into a rage and dismissed his entire cabinet.
-Agnar Arve has a mental breakdown, probably related to stress and begins screaming for his mother one January evening while in his office. A psychologist suggested he spend a few months away from the office. After the whole story gets out to the newspaper, Agnar Arve steps down as Prime Minister of Norway, to be quickly replaced by Ivar Eir until the next election. Due to the exaggerated story in the papers, many Norwegians think of Agnar as a bit of nutter. Nordic Pride Party approval rating begin to slip.
- King Albert I dies in his sleep on May 22. A national day of mourning is called and Prince Andor takes the throne as King Olav V.
-Folk bombings become infrequent and less dangerous. It seems a majority of the leadership have fled the country. For now.
-Norway's response to the Prussian invasion of Denmark is mixed. Some worry it's a sign of German aggression, others are happy that the Socialists are out of Denmark. The government has no response and hasn't opened contact with the Danes yet.
-The election day began on the first of December. The Nordic Pride Party grabs just 50% of votes. Behind them is the Christian Union, with 48% of the votes. With no clear majority, the two parties form a coalition and eventually the two parties fuse together to become the Norway Party. All this happens in just two weeks. The new leader of the Norway Party is Erik Stoltenburg of the former Christian Union. The Norway Party is very similar to the Nordic Pride Party but the idea of hero-worship towards the monarch is discouraged and many Lutheran. The cabinet has been re-shuffled, with many of the more extremist members of the former NPP being fired and the new Prime Minister Stoltenburg has yet to make a move.