Independent Antarctic StatesSource: Beth Fulton (firstname.lastname@example.org)
CommentsA minor power originally formed in response to the corporate annexation of Antarctica. It initially appeared that the IAS would be little more than a nation on paper. However, this did not deter its stalwart supporters and the promise of the "right to think", as the founding article of the IAS constitution is lovingly known, proved to be a powerful draw card. For all these high ideals, the IAS suffered badly during its earliest days - its members were oppressed, suffered acts of violence and many were deported to the harsh polar islands which were the IAS's only land holdings at that time. It is doubtful whether the fledgling nation would have survived if it hadn't been for the courageous stand taken by the global scientific community who, in protest at the treatment of the IAS citizens and their affiliates, began an indefinite "intellectual silence", under which no findings were reported. This passive resistance ultimately proved to be crippling and the IAS was finally formerly recognised at the signing of the first International Antarctic Trade and Research Agreement, on 17th December 2053.
Their holdings include the Terran continent of Antarctica and planets in the Inner Colony system of Sirius. However, most IAS colonies are joint ventures in marginally habitable areas of systems (hot or cold) claimed by another nation, which lacks the expertise to develop the territory on their own. They currently lease or jointly manage 20 continental or planetoid areas, including sites on Armeniakon, Gawain II and locations within the Dixie system and the Dutch, OU and Alarshi systems.
The IAS are considered experts in hostile environment colonisation and deep space exploration. They are closely aligned with the UNSC and most UN crews and exploration expeditions contain IAS specialists. However, the IAS does not restrict its services to the UNSC alone and they are involved in hostile environmental development and exploration with most nations - at least at a consultative or personnel level. This does not mean that relations with all powers are of equal warmth. For instance, the congeniality of the current relationships with the FSE, OU and UNSC is in sharp contrast with the undercurrents of cool professionalism which pervade dealings with the NSL and ESU. The IAS deal with all corporations with caution, however the mega-corp SETAG holds the dubious position of being the only body which the IAS will only deal with under exceedingly exceptional circumstances, if at all. This stems from an incident in 2135 when 156 IAS navigators, engineers and scientists were slaughtered in the name of corporate trading. Inevitably the initial interstellar outcry subsided and SETAG regained its contracts and routes with the major powers - however, the IAS has not forgotten.
The IAS has exploited its abilities in the diplomatic, scientific and engineering fields to ensure that it's position, though minor, is fairly secure.
Editorial NotesThe IAS are primarily science and exploration oriented and don't going looking for a fight, preferring to use diplomacy were possible. However, that does not mean they turn their back on combat and they acquit themselves well under fire - on at least 3 separate occasions they have held until the last man in order to allow allied troops to escape reactively unscathed. Their backgrounds, alliances and interests usually mean that any conflict they take part in is in an extreme environment, against commerce raiders, or under UNSC auspices.
For More Informationhttp://members.xoom.com/gzg_l/ias/
Author and ContributorsSource/Entry Author:Beth Fulton
Changed: Saturday, 30-Jul-2011 11:55:36 EDT