|Republic of the Todaki Islands
Jumhuria Pulau Todak
Pulau Todak (green) in the Crosswind Sea.
and largest city
|Ethnic groups (2016)||50.1% Todaki
|Religion||61.3% Datuk Keramat
|Government||Unitary dominant-party presidential republic|
|-||President||Surintan bin Katijah|
|-||Independence from Shirakawa||3 January 1960|
|-||Todaki Social Republic||15th May 1980|
|-||Second Republic||4th November 2013|
|-||2016 estimate||18.5 million|
|GDP (nominal)||2017 estimate|
|-||Total||57.35 billion USD|
|-||Per capita||3,100 USD|
|Drives on the||left|
The Republic of the Todaki Islands (Todaki: Jumhuria Pulau Todak), commonly known simply as Pulau Todak, is a sovereign island nation located in southern Escar, within the Crosswind Sea. Todak has a population of 18.5 million, making it among the smallest nations in Escar. The country is comprised of 18 large large islands and around 180 islands in total. It has a maritime border to the north with Songthom.
Pulau Todak is a unitary presidential republic, though politics are dominated by the elites of the Todaki National Justice Party. The capital and largest city is Muara Bahru, which acts as the cultural, political and economic heart of the state.
Historically the Todaki Sea Kingdom was among the great powers of southern Escar, maintaining a tight grip on access to the maritime trade routes from Escar to Antar and Orda via the Sea of Anan. It began to decline in the 15th and 16th centuries, eventually falling into the sphere of influence of Shirakawa and later being absorbed into the latter's colonial empire. It was subsequently occupied during both the Third Shiro-Yamataian War and the Escar-Varunan War, before eventually attaining independence from Shirakawa in 1960. However the fledgling republican government quickly became unpopular and was overthrown in the 1980 May Revolution with backing from Songthom. The communist regime would survive for just over three decades, until it was eventually overthrown itself when in 2012 it was invaded by a coalition of states in the Heian Cooperation Organization, restoring the former republic. Today, Todak is a member of the Ordic League and the Fraternity of Nations, among other regional organizations. It maintains an official stance of neutrality, though it is host to a small force of HECO peacekeepers and is involved in regional efforts against piracy and organized crime.
Pulau Todak literally means "Swordfish Islands" in the local Todaki language. This is linked to a local creation myth, where the first humans are believed to be formed from swordfish that beached themselves and changed shape into humans. Pulau Todak is also referred to by locals as Tanah Rakyat, or the "Land of the People". Todaki people refer to themselves as Rakyat, or simply "people".
Sea Kingdom period
The Todaki Sea Kingdom was a thalassocratic confederation of Todaki city states formed in the 1330s through the Treaty of Perpetual Prosperity, which united them under a single elected King. From it's formation through to the 1400s it dominated the oceanic trade routes through the Sea of Anan and the Crosswind.
It's major rival during the height of it's power was the Hanthawaddy Empire in modern day Songthom, and the two states fought a series of destructive wars in the early 16th century collectively known as the Crosswind War that eventually led to the decline of the Sea Kingdom, opening up the regional market to competition from rising Imperial powers in Western Escar.
The Sea Kingdom's demise was confirmed in the 1500s, when a major revolt led by dissatisfied mercantile families broke out in Muara Bauru in response to trade concessions made with Yeongseonin traders. The authority of the King was sharply undermined, and although monarchs would continue to be elected well into the 18th century, even after Shirakawan annexation, they would never again be able to wield enough authority to direct Todak as a single state. Local areas once again became the de-facto independent domains of aristocratic oligarchs.
Direct foreign domination of the island chain in the modern period began in the 1670s with the Crosswind Sea Company, a Shirakawan Red Seal Trade Monopoly created to cash in on the increasingly lucrative oceanic trade route through the Sea of Anan, which at the time had come to be known as a ‘new silk road’. The Company, initially based in mainland Shirakawa, needed a better forward base of operations to conduct their business, and the best candidate at the time was Pulau Todak, thanks to its number of natural harbours and easily exploitable timber resources for shipbuilding. With some negotiation they managed to open a trading post on an island in the Muaru Bahru harbour, and began expanding their operations.
As the Company headquarters expanded however, it was necessary for greater and greater quantities of personnel to be permanently quartered on the islands, and very quickly conflicts began to erupt between local nobility and company lieutenants as local authorities proved increasingly less friendly to the foreigner's demands for additional land. This culminated in what later historians called the First Shiro-Todaki war, fought effectively by the Company (sanctioned and supplied by the Crown) and the Little Confederacy, an alliance of local merchants and princes. The war was ultimately a failure, though the locals failed to oust the Company from it's existing base - a second war erupted five years later, in response to harsh tariffs imposed by Muaru Bahru on the CSC. This time the conflict saw the intervention of the Royal Navy, which decisively defeated the city state's fleet at the Battle of Tengah Bay and ultimately secured victory for the Company forces.
Subsequently, Muaru Bahru became an effective vassal of the Company, with many local elites remaining - albeit under Shirakawan suzerainty. The defeat of one of Todak's most powerful states and a number of it's allies prompted a string of smaller cities to also pray tribute, though where it was not possible to control the region peacefully, the company resorted to violence. By 1736, all of Todak was under Shirakawan control.
The Company largely succeeded in maintaining control of the colony through it's manipulation of local actors and the occasional direct application of force, though it did face a string of major rebellions between the 1720s and '40s, which greatly hurt it's profits and ultimately crippled it following the 1741 Akar Revolt. The dwindling profits of the private venture ultimately prompted the State to step in and takeover administration of the colony in 1745. It reorganized the local government in 1757, putting down many of the powerful Todaki magnates on the more remote islands and breaking up their territories; meanwhile, collaborators with the Colonial authorities were showered with Royal favor, encouraging the development of a local class of loyalist administrators. In 1778, the colony as a whole was annexed and reformed into the Commandery of Pulau Todak. This prompted a rebellion by remaining nobles, which was bloodily put down in what came to be known as the Bukit Api Massacre.
The economic output of the colony on the whole increased under the Commandery, and Muaru Bahru once again became an important port in the Crosswind.
Todaki nationalism, like that of many former Shirakawan realms, has its roots in the sweeping influence of the late 18th century New Legalist intellectual movement, which enthralled educated radicals across the Empire with their ideas of strong, free, rationalistic states built on common national identity. However while such developments led to colonial disturbances as early as the 1790s elsewhere, it would not be until 1856 that Todaki nationalist groups would organize a National Council to represent their as of yet nonexistent island state. Even then, the Council’s activity was limited by small numbers, police repression and internal infighting, though the eventual architects of independence later down the line would all arise from its ranks.
Pulau Todak was largely untouched by most of the foreign wars in which Shirakawa was involved between the 1850s and 1920s, though the effects were certainly felt as much as in the rest of the Empire - Todaki officials considered at all likely to hold nationalistic sympathies were purged from the civil service, the slowly progressing plans to set up a local union for dockworkers were quashed entirely, and there was tension as landowners were forced to grow cash crops to contribute to the rapidly emptying Royal treasury. An assassination attempt on the Minister of the Todaki Commandery by a radical peasant's party in 1912 was met with disproportionate retribution by garrisoned marines in the form of the massacre of 110 todaki civilians, the arrest and executions of 34 alleged ‘ringleaders’ and the sentencing of a further 20 ‘conspirators’ to forced labour in an impromptu military trial.
Given this harsh treatment, it was unsurprising that when, during the Third Shiro-Yamataian War in 1922, Imperial troops occupied some of the islands for a brief period they were welcomed and treated somewhat as liberators by the urban population and landowners. Alas, they did not enjoy such a welcome for long, as they subsequently retreated following the signing of the Treaty of Wanshi, in which Yamatai extracted massive colonial and mainland concessions from the crippled Shirakawan Kingdom that did not however include Todak, despite its relative proximity to the preexisting Yamataian territories in Songthom.
In the Interbellum, following the Rat Coup in the Shirakawan mainland, the administrative organisation of the islands changed once more, as they were put under the jurisdiction of the North Osovan Oceanic Military Circuit, a large organisational grouping placed under the supreme authority of the Council of Elders. This was the result of Operation Southern Court, a massive redeployment of Shirakawan naval assets to external possessions following the loss of a large number of key naval facilities on the mainland in the Treaty of Wanshi. As part of this, the shipbuilding facilities on Todak were greatly expanded and many new harbours, airstrips and submarine pens were constructed, in addition to the strongest shore defenses the now significantly poorer Shirakawa could afford. In addition, a small number of Todaki subjects were forcefully drafted into regiments on the Escari mainland. These regiments would be among the first to see combat when the Fourth Shiro-Yamataian War broke out. A far larger number would begin to be drafted again in 1938, this time into the new Commandery Marine Corps when the situation in the war became urgent for Shirakawa. However, only about half of these would go on to arrive at their various unit headquarters in Osova, as in late 1938 the Yamataian air force waged a heavy bombardment campaign against the island chain’s naval facilities, which was followed by a naval battle and subsequent invasion and occupation in 1939. Once again, the Yamataians were welcomed as liberators by dissatisfied Todaki citizens, though in time it came to be apparent that Imperial rule was not particularly more idyllic than that of Shirakawa.
Pulau Todak was liberated in 1941 by the Commandery Marines, as one of their first major campaigns. The islands were fought over four times thereafter, with the Imperial Marines coming close to recapturing them the first two times but being eventually driven off. Subsequent assaults were meanwhile mostly targeted at destroying supply depots and airfields instead of recapturing the archipelago.
Imperial stragglers actually remained on the islands long after Yamatai had been pushed off them, hiding in mountainous regions. Many of these famously survived decades after the war before being discovered and repatriated, or committing suicide, and rumours of more hiding deeper in the country’s jungles are still common, though the last such case was in the 1980s. Prior to the recent conflict, Todak was famous among antique dealers and military historians alike for being a treasure trove of Endwar-era artifacts that had yet to be thoroughly combed unlike the sites of many larger and more famous campaigns in the West Escari theatre.
On a more grim note, the developed portions of Pulau Todak were left badly devastated by the Endwar, due to a lack of funds for supporting the recovery of a relatively small and insignificant part of the Empire.
Postwar & Return of Colonialism
Postwar, pressure on the Shirakawan government both domestically and in the colonies forced it to adopt a policy working towards independence for its remaining and reclaimed territories. This immediately excited independence activists and nationalist groups, with those of Pulau Todak being no exception. The National Council of Pulau Todak, like many colonial opposition organisations, symbolically started and registered a political party on the Shirakawan mainland, running a single candidate in the formerly Yamataian-occupied city of Wanshi during the 1956 elections - a not all too subtle reminder of the debt owed by the Kingdom to its overseas territories for their massive role in the war’s conduct.
The Shirakawans delivered on their obligations, but not in the way Todaki, or most other, nationalists would have liked - immediate independence. Instead, a scheme was proposed in which territories would be granted full (nominal) sovereignty but would in practice remain as ‘associated states’ with a degree of colonial rule remaining. This state of affairs was in theory supposed to last until the economies and societies of the colonies were sufficiently developed, diversified and self sufficient that the states would be able to become fully independent and equal to their former colonizer. Naturally, this was not how it was perceived in most places, including Todak, and after almost two months of strikes and protests the marine regiments stationed on the islands, which were majority Todaki, conducted an almost bloodless coup on the 13th of August 1959, led by senior figures in the National Council and likely encouraged to a significant degree by foreign anti-colonial agitators from Ahrenrok and Namgiang.
Though retaliation from colonial authorities was expected, it never came. Two destroyers were sent to bombard the city of Akar to intimidate the revolutionaries but were called off for unknown reasons. Meanwhile, the leaders of the insurrection rushed to establish a provisional government, despite very few having experience in administration due to the purges of locals from the civil services.
The Republic of Pulau Todak formally declared independence on the 3rd of January 1960, and entered into negotiations with the Shirakawan government by the end of that month. Recognition of the Todaki state by Shirakawa followed in May, and a constitution was ratified in July.
This new constitution was modelled to a degree on Shirakawan confucian parliamentarianism, though in place of a monarch there was an elected President and a Chancellor leading a simpler single-level partisan cabinet. The parliament, known as the Grand Assembly, also followed this model, with a House of the People akin to the Commons and a House of Exemplars, though in place of the Lords it had the House of Unity.
The first elections were held in 1962. Three parties had emerged as dominant: these were the Todaki Republican Party, the Todaki Social Front and Todaki Totalist Front, representing the right, center and left of the political spectrum respectively. It was the Social Front and Republican Party that gained the bulk of seats in the Assembly thereafter, with the Republicans gaining a narrow majority in the House of People while the Social Front controlled the Exemplars. The Totalists had more distributed support that put them at an electoral disadvantage in the voting system. Already, this sparked controversy, and the small number of Totalist representatives spent a week doing their best to disrupt parliamentary business, culminating in a small brawl that saw the newly appointed Chancellor Intan, injured.
Presidential elections followed in 1963, and the winner was Cahaya Shigemasa of the Republican party, both an icon of the independence movement as well as a decorated veteran of the Commandery Marines.
At first, the new government proved to be remarkably stable. It negotiated aid deals both with Shirakawa and other powers willing to provide, such as Zossia and Ahrenrok, which took off some of the burden of reconstruction, but the islands were nevertheless incredibly lacking in useful industries and resources and had lost most of what little they had once had. There was also the issue of massive personnel shortages in the bureaucracy; as mentioned already, there was little administrative experience to go around, and even less teaching and training experience to create it.
Disagreements over these issues eventually led to the collapse of the Intan government, and Shigemasa subsequently called new elections in 1967 - however these ended up being boycotted by the Totalist Front, and there were accusations that the Republican's had conspired to rig the elections against the Social Front. This led to the breakdown of two subsequent governments in 1968, 1970 and 1971 - ultimately, Shigemasa was forced to resign, and after another contested election she was replaced by Daud bin Danang.
Revolution & Songese invasion
An economic crisis hit the islands in the late 70s, as inflation began to grow as a result of reckless spending and unemployment soared with the completion of reconstruction in most areas and few jobs to replace those disappearing. This fueled discontent and anti-establishment sentiment, feeding the popularity of the Totalist Party, which grew in influence and renamed itself the Todaki People's Democratic Rejuvenation Party. By 1978, at the height of the crisis, they controlled 30% of the House of the People, having supplanted the Social Front as the largest opposition party.
Around the same time, Songthom and Namgiang, the two major socialist powers in Central Escar, were beginning to drift apart in what was known as the Giangi-Songese Split, especially after the failure of the communist intervention in Hinomoto which had been opposed by the Songese. Partially as a result of this, Songthom began secretly negotiating with the TPDRP in 1977, promising support if the party managed to seize control of the country. The Totalists agreed, and in 1980 orchestrated the May Revolution, a rapid coup that ousted the Republican government and saw Songese troops invade the Republic, easily rolling over the ill-prepared and ill-led loyalist troops in the two year long Todaki Civil War.
For the next two decades, Todak became effectively a Songese client state, and after the rise of U Wai Maung began to be increasingly totalitarian and isolationist in it's policies. Kartini binti Teruna, leader of the Rejuvenationist's, emerged as the dominant figure in the party not long after, and became known as a fairly brutal dictator, though her control of the party never reached the extents of her Songese counterpart and after her death in 2004, 'Mother Todak' was replaced by Kepli bin Lanang, an opposing figure in the Party.
Kepli's government, hit with domestic instability following it's takeover, struggled to clamp down on corruption than had flourished under Kartini's patronage and in particular on the large networks of organized crime in the outlying islands, which had taken to involvement in piracy and drawn international ire. Kepli himself was seen as a weak leader, and eventually he was overthrown in a 2007 military coup led by his own Secretary of War, Kanat bin Chik, who took over as party leader after Kepli's arrest. However Kanat himself was unable to consolidate his control and was overthrown by Kepli supporters in 2009. Kepli was released and reinstated, and attempted to purge the leadership of the armed forces not long thereafter - this ultimately encouraged paranoia among his own supporters in the Army, who feared they would be hit by the reprisals, and thus motivated yet another coup attempt in 2011, which was successfully put down. However, the instability motivated public demonstrations against the regime and led to Songthom distancing itself publicly, as President U Phyo Zaw sought Western Escaric favour.
Restoration of the Republic
Finally, in April 2012 a Shirakawan-led coalition of HECO states invaded Todak, with the aim of toppling the regime and stabilizing the region; this was known as Operation Liberty's Spear. A massive air campaign in the first week of the invasion largely destroyed the Todaki air force and air defenses on the ground, and marine troops followed thereafter, seizing most of the country with minimal casualties. Muaru Bahru was finally captured in late June, and a provisional government, led by figures from the former Republican party, was put in place, though a military occupation of the country remained in place until 2013, when it was downgraded to a peacekeeping mission. The intervention was officially condemned by both Songthom and nations in the Seventh Internationale, as well as by several nonaligned nations which complained of the campaign's unilateralism on HECO's part. There was significant speculation that part of the real reason for the intervention was the discovery of substantial natural gas deposits in the southern islands around 2010, and in Shirakawa left-wing parties attacked the government for waging a 'fossil war'.
At the end of 2013 the Todaki Provisional Government introduced a new constitution and formally refounded the Second Todaki Republic. Presidential elections were held in 2014 and were won by Surintan bin Katijah, Chairman of the Provisional Government and head of the new National Justice Party. Allegations of voter intimidation and various issues with the electoral process including blackouts and 'lost ballots' were widespread, and were criticized by various Escari governments. Similar criticisms were made when the NJP also dominated in the elections to the Grand Assembly in 2015, winning 60% of the seats in the House of the People, and 78% in the House of Exemplars.
Government and politics
Pulau Todak is a Presidential Democratic Republic, though the 'democratic' part is considered by some to be slightly suspect, as the government of the incumbent President Surintan bin Katijah, who has been in power since the toppling of the People's Democratic Rejuvenation Party, has developed a reputation for harassment of key opposition figures and slightly paranoid coup-proofing measures. The 2014 Presidential Election following the end of Operation Liberty's Spear were considered by many international observers to have been dubious, as was the case for the General Elections the following year.
Theoretically at least, the government system of Todak is a development of it's pre-DRP parliamentary constitution modeled on Shirakawa. The Parliament, known as the Grand Assembly, consists of three chambers - the House of the People, the House of Exemplars, and the House of Unity. The lower two houses together form a lower house, one elected and one nominated by a 'Commission of Merit'. Both of these houses are currently dominated by the reigning National Justice Party. The House of Unity meanwhile acts as the upper house, confirming legislation from the other two houses - it consists of religious figures, trade union and business representatives and elected representatives from each of the country's provinces, all of whom are nominally non-partisan.
Unlike in the older Parliamentary system, Todak does not have an indirectly elected Premier, but rather a directly elected President, who wields more power and does not answer directly to Parliament. His cabinet is known as the Republican Council, and consists of various Ministers and Secretaries for the various functions of State.
There is a powerful National Censorate responsible for government audits and prevention of corruption, though critics have accused the President of interfering in it's operation and using it as a means of attacking political opponents.
The Armed Forces of the Todaki Republic consist of around 19,800 active and 140,200 reserve troops, and are divided into the Todaki Republican Army, Todaki Republican Air Force, Todaki Republican Navy, Todaki Peaceguard and the Todaki Republican Guard. The latter two branches are paramilitary and together make up about 7,000 of the active component; the Todaki Peaceguard, like the Shirakawan Peaceguard, is a gendarmerie and domestic security force, while the Todaki Republican Guard answers directly to the President of the Republic and operates largely independently of the rest of the armed forces - it is intended to be a measure against military coups. With the exception of the Republican Guard, the entire Armed Forces is conscripted.
The military uses a mix of Yamataian and Shirakawan equipment, much of it being older surplus, as well as some Giangi and Songese equipment left over from Songese occupation. So there are troops wearing Yamataian KLMK, carrying Songese EMER-K rifles rechambered to fit Shirakawan magazines, riding in a very beat-up AMX-VCI. They have one submarine that cannot submerge due to budget reasons, and some of their ships date back to the Endwar.
The Republican Air Force comprises of two squadrons of Songese-built Mirage-5 copies, as well as a single unit of 2 Yamataian Mi-95s (Mitsubishi F-2s) purchased in 2015 in a scandalous purchase widely considered as wasteful.
There are vast deposits of oil and natural gas in the Todaki waters. Besides this, the local industry relies on fishing and logging, as well as minor luxury industries such as pearl diving. It's major trading partners are Songthom, Shirakawa, Yamatai and Yeongseon.