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Ottonian Reunification

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Reunification of Ottonia
Part of Inter-Ottonian Conflict
DateMarch 4th, 2022 – May 2nd, 2022
Continental South Ottonia, with focal points in Staalburg, Onneria, Wylmspurt, Rynnea, Meuse, Haeburg, and Alderhall
Caused byViolent suppression of protests, opposition to unresponsive government, excessive government-sanctioned social and economic inequality, religious persecution
GoalsAbolition of the Monarchy of South Ottonia, social and economic reforms, political reconciliation with the Federation of Ottonian Republics.
Resulted inCollapse of United Kingdom of Ottonia government on Ottonian mainland, flight to Draakur, admittance of five new republics, formerly within South Ottonia, into the Federation of Ottonian Republics.
Parties to the civil conflict

Popular Front of South Ottonia

Public support from:
Lead figures
Death(s)Unknown, at least 1500
InjuriesUnknown, at least 6000
ArrestedUnknown, at least 9000, although most were quickly reversed

The Reunification of Ottonia was a two-month long event that unfolded beginning in March of 2022. Consisting of a civil conflict, intervention by the Federation of Ottonian Republics, and the admittance of five new republics into the Federation, the event saw the collapse of the United Kingdom of Ottonia's government on the Ottonian mainland and its subsequent evacuation to the Draakur Archipelago, and the proclamation of socialist, republican governments in the formerly South Ottonian zone, and dramatic reforms undertaken in the rump UKO state, now confined to Draakur. The admittance of the five new republics meant that for the first time in more than a century, the entirety of mainland Ottonia was united under a single government.


The United Kingdom of Ottonia, known prior to March 2022 as South Ottonia, was established as a result of the 1918 - 1921 Ottonian Civil War and the subsequent Partition of Ottonia which took effect in 1922. Initially simply an attempt at the reestablishment of the imperial Ottonian monarchy in the modern Federation, the subsequent embrace of socialism by the competing Federation of Ottonian Republics prompted the increasingly-explicit embrace by South Ottonia of capitalism, specifically a type of state capitalism that saw corporations, often owned by mixed ownership groups of new-money industrialists and old-money aristocrats largely take ownership of vast swaths of public life, including most land ownership, and resulting in an environment that was tremendously-hostile to organized labor.

Although this initially led to an economic boom known as the South Ottonian Miracle in the 1960's, and another boom in the 1980's brought by foreign investment, this also contributed to a wide disparity in wealth accumulation and income generation, and increasingly the lower and working classes in South Ottonia found themselves living paycheck to paycheck and vulnerable to destitution from any significant economic disruption. Many public policy analysts, particularly North Ottonian ones, have highlighted that South Ottonia's extremely-sparse social safety nets (which often were undermined further in the 1980's) exacerbated the problem, as did a lack of public services such as publicly-funded healthcare, pensions, or food assistance. Moreover, further economic reforms in the 1980's aimed at liberalizing stock trading and company ownership further accelerated the growth of the wealth gap, with the country's middle class shrinking dramatically over the course of the ensuing three decades.

By the late 2010's, this had reached a critical point; ongoing attempts by North Ottonian agents to foster South Ottonia's labor movement and political opposition were finding fertile ground and were crystalizing into an organized resistance to the South Ottonian government, and internet communication and detente between the two Ottonian governments had resulted in increasing awareness of other nations' living standards. A report by several officials in the South Ottonian military and civil service in 2007 urged that significant structural reforms were needed lest the South Ottonian government's ability to hold the country become fatally compromised, but was disregarded by the government.


The immediate cause which incited the cascading violence and the disintegration of the South Ottonian government in early March of 2022 was the attempted suppressions of a dockworker's strike in Onneria and a miner's strike near Waaldhuld. After confrontations at both strikes between police and strikers (the former believed to have been accompanied and aided in both cases by agents of the Royal Security Service and members of the Invictist Golden Lances militia) resulted in violence. The violence at the Waaldhuld strike on March 3rd resulted in the deaths of eighteen miners, three police, one state sec agent, and seven militiamen, as well as another 58 reported injuries. The following day, panicked gunfire, believed to be from police, in Onneria, sparked a violent confrontation that left 15 dockworkers dead and another 46 injured, seven police dead, another 19 wounded, three Royal Security Agents dead (and another four injured), and an estimated 26 militia members injured, and 20 Golden Lance militiamen dead, ten of them hung by the neck from lampposts after dockworkers stormed harbor facilities and forced the retreat of police forces in the aftermath of the shooting.

The South Ottonian Revolution

Early Stages

Following the violent attempts at dispersing both strikes, protests in solidarity were organized in the majority of South Ottonia's cities, as anger that had long-simmered came to an open boil. The protests remained peaceful between March 4th and March 7th, when word began to spread of the violence at the Onnerian harbor strike, prompting the attempted entry to city halls by protestors in Haelsburg, Meuse, and Alderhall, resulting in the use of violence to repel the forcible entry attempts. Although these early instances occurred without fatalities, it led to the mutation of the protests increasingly into riots, in every major city in the country, by March 10th. Many Royalist law enforcement officials, as well as Popular Fronters alike, laid significant blame at the feet of Invictist militias, who were often quick to use lethal violence against protestors and often visited cruel treatment among arrested or captured protests. In one notable case, a captured group of protestors in Onneria alleged that on March 11th, members of the Invictist militia Sons of Otto brutalized 33 detained protesters, the largest, but far from only allegation of such activities against such groups.

As the protests became less tranquil and occasionally engaged in deliberate property damage, police, Royal Security Service, and militia members increasingly became more violent in retaliation. Beatings became much more common, as well as the use of tear gas, LLMs, and, in a few cases, gunfire using live bullets. Crowds, already in a roiling fury, often retaliated by beating law enforcement officers or chasing them into retreat. Militia members, already even more likely to jump to lethal violence than the professionals they were allied with, increasingly faced retaliatory lynchings in the event of capture by crowds. Weapons, often captured from militias or law enforcement, proliferated among ever-more-irate resistors, and on March 13th, a detachment from the Army of Staalmark, attempting to retake Staalburg's Central Square (which had been occupied the previous day by protestors) found itself forced to retreat in the face of unexpected gunfire and severe damage to several military vehicles from IEDs.

South Ottonian Revolution

The repulse of the elements of the Army of Staalmark on March 13th during the battle for Staalburg's Central Square emboldened many of the demonstrators, increasingly working alongside worker militias organized with assistance from South Ottonian elements of the Universal Labor Federation. By this point, weapons believed to have been sourced from North Ottonia were reaching demonstrators, who were now often capable of facing police and state security on near-equal terms. While police and RSS agents were often allowed to flee, worker's militias and demonstrators rarely showed mercy to Golden Lance members, who became more violent in response, especially as it became increasingly clear to Invictist militas that to be captured by the South Ottonian Popular Front (so named as the protest movements strengthened contact and coordination with one another) was to, more than likely, die.

City halls in Haelsburg, Meuse, Alderhall, Rynnea, Waaldhuld, Bronnhuld, Ardenburg, and many smaller towns were under Popular Front control by nightfall on March 19th, even as mixed police, army, RSS, and militia elements attempted to reestablish control in many cities through armed assaults. Those forces were on the defensive in Staalburg, Onneria, and Wylmspurt, and Staalburg's city center had definitively-fallen two days later. Noble estates were ransacked in many cases, although with only rare exceptions, any aristocrats who had not already fled the conflict zones had thrown in with the protestors in hopes of mollifying them (although such instances were rare).

On March 21st, the royal family fled Wylmspurt, evacuating to the district of Sant Mikel on Gran Draakur, to direct the counter-revolutionary effort from the unusually-tranquil province of Draakur. As more and more civilians joined protestors, demonstrators, and Popular Front militias, it became increasingly clear that Staalmark and Meuse as a whole would require extraordinary military operations to retake, and that the situations in Haelynd and Onneria were rapidly deteriorating. On March 22nd, Popular Front forces in Staalburg and Meuse declared, respectively the Folk Republik of Staalmark and the Autonomous Community of Meuse, and the provisional governments elected by the protestors formally requested military aid from the Federation of Ottonian Republics. North Ottonian forces, which had increased readiness as the violence had escalated, quickly moved in to the two eastern provinces of South Ottonia over the ensuing two days, and in southern Staalmark actually supported Popular Front militias in repelling an attempted drive towards Staalburg by the South Ottonian army.

Concurrently, on March 24th, Onneria's government district fell to the protestors. Prior to evacuating, Archbishop of Onneria Wyllem Kaaldur denounced the Popular Front as "children of the devil". With Onneria mostly in rebel hands, the Onnerian Social Republic was declared, and a similar request as Staalmark and Meuse's was sent to North Ottonia. Even as North Ottonian forces arrived to assist the rebels, Wylmspurt remained in Royal hands, now the linchpin of a massive evacuation of the remaining government loyalists, including the elements of the Royal Army that had not surrendered, mutinied (notably several Staalmarker units reportedly imprisoned or killed their officers before making non-aggression agreements with rebel forces, and even in functional units desertion was rampant), or routed in the field.

With the fall of Haelsburg on March 25th, the process was repeated in Haelynd, with largely Eonese forces entering the area and routing the few remaining Royal Army elements still actively attempting to oppose the rebels. This notably included the entire Haelsburg chapter of the Golden Lances who, upon capture, had their entire leadership cadre summarily executed by Popular Front supporters, claimed to be in reprisal for a massacre of civilian protestors two days prior. Anywhere North Ottonian forces were invited by Popular Fronters, invariably little to no resistance ensued, and often entire Royal Army units, demoralized and in disarray, surrendered without a fight at all.

Flight to Draakur

By March 28th, the Royalist zone of control was limited to Wylmspurt and the Draakur Archipelago, with Royal Army remnants and the largely-unscathed Royal Navy acting to hold the evacuation route to Draakur open (admittedly, at sea, against little opposition; North Ottonian naval forces, though observing the situation, had been forbidden to initiate any engagement with the South Ottonian navy). Rebel forces laid siege to the city, but on March 31st, attempts at diplomacy won out; a North Ottonian-brokered truce allowed Royalist forces until April 15th to evacuate their people from Wylmspurt, on the condition that the city was to be handed over to the Popular Front on that day, and any attempted double-cross would constitute a declaration of war against the Federation.

The evacuation effort was largely in the hands of Draakur's military governor and the Royal Army's remaining generals. Recognizing the hopeless situation, and despite outrage from the disproportionately-aristocratic civilian government (and one general), the Army's leadership accepted the terms, enabling a peaceful evacuation. On April 16th, 2022, the last mainland Ottonian city held by the UKO's government, was entered by Popular Front forces.

The combined air- and sea-lifts from Wylmspurt to Draakur (and, earlier in the revolution, from Onneria and Bronnhuld to Draakur) evacuated what is estimated to be in excess of 100,000 loyalists from the Royalist government, aristocracy, Royal Army, police, civil service, RSS, and militias.


The Mainland

The end of the evacuation of the UKO's people from Wylmspurt is considered to end the South Ottonian Revolution. The provisional governments of the five republics (Onneria, Kanketa, Haelynd, Staalmark, and Meuse) quickly organized referenda in regards to joining the Federation of Ottonian Republics, all of which approved the action by substantial margins in late April. On May 2nd, Republic Day, all five were formally admitted to the Federation as Constituent Republics by an act of the Folksmoot.

Although the formal process of joining the Federation is complete for the five new republics, a significant amount of integration and reform are ongoing. The five republics, previously part of a capitalist economy, must undertake reforms to bring themselves into compliance with the New Foundation of Ottonia, the Federation's Constitution. Moreover, the republics' governments are still being built, with constitutions and founding documents in the process of being drafted and elections being held to install permanent governments to replace the provisional ones. In addition, legal proceedings are still being brought against noteworthy members of the South Ottonian government that were captured during the revolution, as well as militia, soldiers, and law enforcement who are accused of serious crimes including human rights violations. Finally, all five republics are, at present, still contending with remnants of Invictist militias, primarily the Sons of Otto and the Golden Lances, who have taken up insurgency operations in the former South Ottonia.


The alarmingly-fast disintegration of Royal authority on the mainland highlighted a need for dramatic structural reforms in how the UKO operated after the flight to Draakur. Following the successful evacuation, Storkeneg Rodrik I abdicated in favor of his son, Vitus, who assumed the throne, and empowered the Emergency Transitional Administration, led by Director Stevan Grimmeburger, the former Deputy Governor, to undertake necessary reforms, including some that seem likely to be quite unpopular with members of the previous administration.

There is some concern among royalists that the power dynamics between the ETA and Royal House of Sproek-Kristhulm is different from how it is presented in official releases, with fears being expressed by anonymous observers that the ETA may be using the Storkeneg as a figurehead while pursuing its own governing agenda. To support such claims, the fact that many social democratic policies are being pursued in a sharp departure from previous South Ottonian government policy, in addition to seeming concessions to Draakurae nationalists, hostility towards the aristocracy, and an increased willingness for rapprochment with the mainland government, are all cited, with some going so far as to accuse Grimmeburger and other ETA leaders of being "crypto-Wernerists".

International Response

The abrupt, violent collapse of a monarchical state in Belisaria certainly drew notice, and often concern (or elation) from international observers.


Ottonia-Yisrael relations were long and complex. Yisrael had centuries-long ties with the Ottonian region and its multiple principalities, and later with its post-19th century unified government. The Autocracy of Yisrael under General David Azoulay based a significant portion of his secret rearmament and training program in Royal Ottonia in the 1940s; this led to tense ties with the new North Ottonian state. In the late 1950s, a liberalizing Yisrael made peace and reset relations with the North while continuing ties with South Ottonia. The chain of liberal presidential administrations in Yisrael favored the North over the South until the mid-1970s. After that, the rise of a conservative political climate re-balanced foreign relations between both states, with the South gaining favor.

In the late 2010s and early 2020s, relations between Yisrael and North Ottonia were cooling and repeatedly at odds geopolitically. However, the swiftness of the events of March 2022 caught the Katz administration off-guard and the administration issued a tepid statement "urging calm and order inside South Ottonia and non-interference by other powers," largely seen as a wipe at the North. However, preoccupied with the ongoing Accords crisis with Sydalon, the Government of Yisrael remained silent upon the South's fall and annexation into the North, which now referred to itself more forcefully internationally as the Federal Republic of Ottonia (FOR) with the reunification of the mainland.

Ottonian and Yisraeli analysts had anticipated a stronger response to the weeks-long unrest and collapse of South Ottonia; however, pressing events in West Scipia and elsewhere diminished an appetite to involve itself more aggressively in the region and its fallout. Months later, as the September Crisis erupted globally, FOR's restraint and diplomatic cover for the Katz administration regarding the Gadir attack and the Sydalenes' push to renegotiate the Yarden Accords in what the Yisraelis believed would be to their detriment, caused Yisrael to reassess its Ottonian position. Given the weakness of the royalist rump state on Draakur and FOR's strategic choice to provide timely diplomatic weight in its West Scipian concerns, the Katz administration has repeatedly declined to interfere in Ottonia or criticize the March 2022 takeover, instead calling the situation "the new status quo." Foreign policy commentators called this a win for the FOR, considering the theoretical but persistent looming threat in foreign policy circles of an Arthuristan- or Latin-backed military push to help the former South Ottonia reestablish itself on the mainland. In such a move, Yisrael's hawkish government was considered a possible key foreign player; however, with the Katz administration's new Insular Policy and specific silence on the reunification, any such diplomatic and military push to assist the UKO would not seem to have any Yisraeli support.


The Prime Republic of Ostrozava had served as a historical ally of the North Ottonian side of the Ottonian region, committing troops to the North's defense in a regionally-destabilizing action during the Great Ottonian War, and maintaining neutral to excellent relations throughout the 20th century. Nevertheless, the split of Ottonia had come to commonly been equated with the Ostrozavan Declension in character among the Progressive policymakers of the time, particularly the 30-year reign of the Progressive Party under the Moravec and Ședlakova from 1985-2020. The traditional Progressive political position on the Ottonian issue is détente and a maintaining of the status quo, while Socialists have typically advocated for a united Ottonia.

At the beginning of political violence inside Ottonia in the early spring, the government of Ostrozava urged for "caution in the name of expanding democracy" in the region, and declared its recognition of the legitimacy of the reunification. Though the majority of the People's Congress came out in support of the reunification, debate arose as to the rationales members of different parties tended to be using. There remains much debate as to how much events in Ottonia informed the Ostrozavan government's foreign policy before and after the reunification. Primar Benedict Král has stated that the issue "weighed on his mind" during the time, leading to speculation that events in Ottonia could have greatly impacted the eagerness of Ostrozavan policy makers and led to their attempt at expanding into Scipia later that year, prompting the Ostrozavan government's planned expansion into Gadir and the subsequent Gadir attack. Opposition to Král's administration typically articulates either historical determinism or strategic reasons for accepting the split of Ottonia. Kelmoș Teșâr of the newly-formed Interfront party has spoken in support of Ottonian reunification in the past, noting that "disappointment in the outcome of this issue must be carefully managed and discussed."