Occupation of Caldia
|Occupation of Caldia|
|Part of the Great War|
The HMS Clovis Richard I outside Spálgleann port.
|Commanders and leaders|
Hermann von Ratzinger
Waldemar von Stürgkh
Éamon Ua Buachalla|
Uilliam Mac Coinneach
800 Estmerish Marines
30,000 Home Guard
500 Weranian Marines
12,500 Home Guard
500 police officers
The Occupation of Caldia by the Kingdom of Estmere and Werania began on 10 March 1927 during the Great War after a joint invasion with the intent of denying Caldia to Gaullica and its Entente allies. Marine and naval forces from both countries invaded neutral Caldia but faced no resistance. The Caldish government did not lodge a complaint despite the official violation of Caldish neutrality. Despite the occupation, the Caldish government remained officially neutral throughout the Great War. As the war progressed, the Estmerish government-in-exile relocated to Caldia as did much of the Estmerish Liberation Army. It ended on 15 March 1935.
The occupation was controversial in Caldia. Public opposition eventually resulted in the outbreak of the Quasi-War, a period of violent opposition to the occupation. It strained ties with Estmere and Werania for nearly 20 years. The relationship between Caldia and its former occupiers was gradually normalized, resulting in Caldish ascension to the Euclean Community alongside Werania in 1955.
Prior to the Great War, Caldia had long maintained an official policy of neutrality. The country had not been at war since 1709 and remained mostly uninvolved on Euclean geopolitical affairs. When the Great War officially began, Taoiseach Éamon Ua Buachalla reaffirmed the country's neutrality. Caldia's iron reserves and steel industry were of interest to both Estmere and Gaullica. Both governments attempted to persuade Ua Buachalla to enter their respective alliances, but ultimately failed. The Estmerish and Weranic governments began to hold discussions about what to do with Caldia as the war progressed. Solstianan membership in the Entente and the Gaullophillic Geatish government were cause for concern for both governments, who worried about Gaullican domination of the North Sea. Threats to Estmere and Werania's colonies in Coius made Caldia's iron reserves important to the wartime plans of both governments. Caldia's warm water ports and their strategic location in the North Sea were also factors in the decision to occupy the country.
The invasion began in the early morning of 10 March 1927 with Estmerish and Weranian troops disembarking in Spálgleann, capital of neutral Caldia. The troops were met with no resistance and quickly began to establish control over the country. As control was established, Gaullican citizens were arrested and the Gaullican embassy was forced to close. The intent was to secure Caldia was a base of operations for the Grand Alliance, offering advantageous ports near Solstiana and the northern Vehemens ocean, allowing it to maintain naval dominance in strategic locations.
The Estmerish initially took the leading role in the occupation. Major General Edmund Anchorage was tasked with the permanent defense of Caldia. He oversaw the upgrading of the country's defense, fortifying much of the country. The Royal Marine invasion force was relieved by the 125th Brigade of the Home Force. Over four thousand Estmerish soldiers were sent to occupy the islands, which arrived on 19 March. Reinforcements from the Estmerish Home Force were routinely sent to Caldia in order to reinforce the existing garrison. By the end of 1927, there were over 30,000 Estmerish soldiers in Caldia.
Early in the occupation, Estmere offered Caldia assistance as an "ally and co-belligerent in the war against Gaullica" but Ua Buachalla again declined and reaffirmed the country's neutrality. Despite this, Ua Buachalla did begin to cooperate with the Estmerish government. Military forts were handed over without opposition from his government.
After the surrender of Ashcombe to Gaullican forces, Estmere was gradually overrun. By mid-1929, the whole of the country had been occupied by Gaullica. The Estmerish military retreated north into Werania. Eventually, the Estmerish government-in-exile relocated to Spálgleann. The Estmerish Liberation Army also based itself out of Spálgleann. This saw the arrival of over 120,000 additional Estmerish soldiers in Caldia. However, they were not officially part of the occupation and were mostly later relocated to Werania and other areas in northern Euclea.
500 Weranian Marines participated in the initial invasion. They were relieved by over three thousand soldiers from the Weranian Reserve Force on 20 March. An additional 10,000 Weranian soldiers would later be stationed in Caldia. Many Weranian soldiers were new recruits and were sent to Caldia for further training. This resulted in complications with the occupation, as the new recruits frequently reacted hostility to the civilian population due to incomplete or improper training. Hermann von Ratzinger, a former Weranian chancellor and general, was sent to oversee Weranian activities in Caldia due to suspicions of pro-Entente sympathies (then-Weranian Chancellor Reinhold von Schönborn-Herz likened von Ratzinger's posting to an easy excuse to keep him out of Westbrücken). Von Ratzinger promoted hardline policies in the occupation seeing Caldish people as "loud, uncouth and totally ungovernable" and positing that the rebels could only be reasoned with through brute and decisive force.
Von Ratzinger was assassinated by members of Fiann Gael on 21 April 1932. His killing provoked outrage in Werania, resulting in a shakeup of the occupation's leadership. Von Ratzinger was succeeded by admiral Waldemar von Stürgkh who had overseen the initial invasion and was considered to be more moderate in his approach to the rebels. Von Stürgkh favored a gradual build-up of the Caldish armed forces to deal with the rebels and for the Ua Buachalla government to come to an amicable arrangement with Werania and Estmere to ensure the long-term maintenance of strategic ties between the three nations. With fresh Weranian troops being increasingly required in continental Euclea von Stürgkh implemented a new deployment process where older or infirm troops in continental Euclea would be rotated to Caldia whilst younger recruits sent to Werania outside a core force of experienced marines. The aim was to gradually wind down troop deployments and operations in Caldia to prepare the nation for the post-occupation future. Whilst this process was generally welcomed by the Caldish government it was unpopular amongst Weranian troops who preferred a deployment in Caldia than continental Euclea.
The occupation of Caldia was viewed negatively throughout the country. The Caldish press and Ua Buachalla's political rivals viewed it as a violation of the country's sovereignty. Státaire, one of the country's oldest newspapers, condemned the Taoiseach for failing to lodge a diplomatic complaint against the Estmerish and Weranic governments following the invasion. Demonstrations against the occupation were common and were promoted by radicals and socialists. Public gatherings were banned nationally in November 1928. On 17 December 1928, an outlawed public demonstration against the occupation was held outside Carrowdun Palace. It was violently suppressed by city police, who were supported by the Caldish army and Estmerish and Weranian soldiers. Nine civilians were killed and dozens were injured in what came to be remembered as the Carrowdun Massacre. Shortly after, resistance groups began to form in order to oppose the occupying forces and the Ua Buachalla government. The three groups were Saor Glaíteann, Fiann Gael, and the United Ghaillish Workers' Front, which was affiliated with the Caldish Section of the Workers' International (GOC).
Fighting between the resistance groups, the Caldish government, and the Estmerish and Weranic occupying forces lasted until 1935. Sabotage, kidnappings, assassinations, and terrorism were common tactics employed by the resistance. The three resistance groups were ideologically opposed and at times carried out operations against one another. The GOC was outlawed in 1931 and the Worker's Front was mostly defeated by the end of the same year. The 1932 general election was delayed by Ua Buachalla amid heavy pressure from Estmere and Werania after von Ratzinger's assassination. Marshal law was also declared in 1932, giving the Caldish army and Estmerish and Weranian occupying forces additional authority. The Radical Liberal Party was banned in 1934 due to its ties to Soar Saor Glaíteann. The insurgency ended after the Soirmoor Agreement was signed on 24 February 1935 and the gradual withdrawal of occupying forces.
The defeat of the Entente in Euclea and the surrender of Gaullica in 1934 began a gradual withdrawal process. Much of the Estmerish forces in Caldia had already been pulled from the country, as they were used to liberate Estmere. Withdrawal became a complicated political issues, worsened by the continued activities of the resistance. Negations between the Caldish government and the Estmerish and Weranic military leadership began in November 1934. Both Estmere and Werania worked to negotiate concessions before they withdrew their forces. The process was accelerated following the surrender of the Heavenly Xiaodongese Empire and the formal end of the war on 12 February 1935.
Representatives from Estmere and Werania met with the Ua Buachalla government at Soirmoor Manor in County Clane. The Soirmoor Agreement was signed on 24 February 1935 and outlined the terms of withdrawal. The Caldish government agreed to place a ban on the main political agitators and rebels from holding elected office. The electoral system was also altered to replace first-past-the-post with mixed-member proportional representation in order to give parties more control over their candidates to prevent anti-occupation candidates from being elected. Estmere and Werania had hoped to ensure that a friendly government would form after the suspended 1932 general election was held.
The Soirmoor Agreement came into effect on 15 March formally ending the occupation and restoring full sovereignty to Caldia. Estmerish and Weranic forces withdrew entirely by the end of March. The suspended 1932 general election was held on 20 March and was won by the Social Democratic Party. Tomás Mag Fhearadhaigh became the first socialist leader of Caldia.
The occupation had a long-lasting impact on Caldia. It had major political implications and altered the country's foreign policy.
The Caldish Democrats, Ua Buachalla's party, had a series of electoral disasters after the occupation and became a minor party. The National Conservative Party, the other major pre-occupation party, was disbanded. The two parties that emerged after the occupation were the Social Democratic Party and the Liberty Party, which was formed in 1936. Mag Fhearadhaigh dropped the electoral ban on opponents of the occupation in 1936. He also offered amnesty to members of the resistance, actions protested by Estmere and Werania. Mag Fhearadhaigh lost the 1937 general election to Eleanore Rosaiteir. Rosaiteir was a founding member of the Liberty Party and had previously been a member of the Radical Liberals. She had ties to the resistance and was actively involved with Saor Glaíteann. She became the longest serving Taoiseach in Caldish history, serving three full terms from 1937 to 1952.
Caldish foreign policy was opposed to Estmerish and Weranic policy. Caldia declined to join the United Nations of Euclea and refused to join the CN intervention force during the Solarian War. The Caldish government also became a critic of continued colonization and was an advocate for decolonization. Military intervention by Estmere and Werania in Coius was often rebuked by Rosaiteir. Much of her foreign policy became a foundation of Caldia's post-war policy of non-alignment.
Ties with Estmere and Werania remained strained until the PSD won the 1952 general election. Seamus Mac Amhlaidh sought a policy of rapprochement. A wedding was organized between Kaiser Otto X of Werania and Ellen II's daughter, Princess Margaret. This helped warm diplomatic relations. Caldia became a founding member of the Northern Forum in 1952. The organization facilitated relations between Caldia and Werania. Under Mac Amhlaidh, the country joined the Euclean Community in 1955 alongside Werania. However, it did not join the Euclean Defense Treaty Organization alongside the EC. Relations with Estmere gradually improved alongside ties with Werania. However, Caldia still remains opposed to military intervention by Euclean powers and the government will at times criticize Estmerish and Weranic conduct in the region.
The occupation remains controversial in Caldia today. It was seen as a defining moment in the country's modern history.
Many politicians in the post-war period had ties to the resistance. Some were active members of the groups that had carried out actions against Estmerish and Weranic soldiers. In private correspondence, Francis Bridges, a former Estmerish ambassador to Caldia, wrote that the country was "governed at all levels by terrorists and their sympathizers".
Artists have often depicted scenes of the occupation. Murals remembered the occupation are common. Some depict the resistance groups in positive ways, which has drawn controversy. The occupation has also been used in the works of Caldish musicians. Many anti-occupation songs became popular in the decades after. The most well known of which is Come Out, Ye Black and Tans. The occupation has been covered frequently in cinema and film.
It is taught extensively in Caldish schools. The National Museum for the Occupation, based in Spálgleann, has the largest collection of occupation era artifacts. There are several historical societies dedicated to the occupation.
The National Rose Garden in Spálgleann was built as a memorial to the occupation and Caldish people who served in the Great War and all military conflicts after.
15 March is a national holiday in Caldia and is observed as Liberation Day. It marks the Soirmoor Agreement, which is viewed as the official end of the occupation.