The Great War of Urando – 1900-1920 part 1

Background

See here for a map of Urando

In 1895 the mayor of the capital of Fruytanya, Kisslar staged a coup against the corrupt and highly unpopular Atèh-ser of the country. The monarchy was subsequently abolished and Fruytanya becomes a republic with Kisslar as president.

His politics could be described to a Terrestrial audience as a mixture of conservatism, nationalism, socialism and authoritarianism. Though the Kisslar regime was harsh, the government enjoyed wide popular support, especially after the crack down of the rampant corruption that plagued the country for decades.

Between 1896 and 1899 the economy of Fruytanya was booming, unemployment declined and income inequality decreased. However, in early 1900 the economy started to slow down and an initial fiscal stimulus only helped a little. Worrying that a prolonged downturn would undermine the popularity of the government, Kisslar and his most prominent minister, Kimmlar, decided to go for war.

The Fruytanyan government quickly choose to attack its southern neighbor Djukar. Both countries had a longstanding dispute concerning several issues, including fishing rights, border demarcation and violent gangs. Also Djukar was considered to be the weakest of all neighboring states and the military expected to be capable to ensure victory in a couple of weeks.

Stage 1 – August & September 1900

On August 3rd, 1900 the Fruytanyan army invaded Djukar after the latter rejected a ridiculous ultimatum considering the extradition of a couple fishermen who supposedly illegally fished in Fruytanyan waters. Within two weeks half of the nation was occupied and this shocked the countries surrounding the Brown Sea, not least Gramatia.

For the last 2,500 years Gramatia’s strategic doctrine requires that the Commonwealth should completely control the Brown Sea. This sudden act of Fruytanyan aggression was seen by the Imperial High Command as a direct threat the Gramatian naval supremacy. Not in least place because the Gramatian island of Biran was a logical next target.

On August 23rd Emperor Dryton XXIV declared war on Fruytanya and in the early morning of August 25th eleven legions under the command of Duke Eskrajan invaded Eastern Fruytanya. Meanwhile the Imperial Brown Sea fleet set sail to Djukar – to help the country and to protect Biran against a maritime invasion.

Also Gramatia called upon its traditional allies, Collya and Langarya for support. These countries send twenty and eight squadrons respectively. Fearing that if Djukar would be conquered, they would be the next target for Fruytanyan expansion, the Langaryans also send their army to Djukar to help fight the Kisslar regime.

Meanwhile the Benyan government carefully monitors what it is called the “Brown Sea War” in the media across the planet of Urando. Though both Benya and Fruytanya share a strong aversion against Gramatia, these nations are not really allied. So initially Undersaft tried to stay out of this war, while mobilizing its army.

Nonetheless, the Benyan government had a lingering dispute with the island nation of Muran regarding fishing rights and certain unpaid loans. During the 1880s the former nation had lent approximately 100 million Benk to the latter country, after a massive earth quake. However, during the 1890s there arose disputes regarding the repayment of these loans.

In early 1900 the government of Muran sent a secret mission to the Gramatia’s second largest city and principal harbor, Poldradek, in order to discuss the possibility of refinancing its outstanding debts. Fearing that the traditionally isolationist island nation would formally align with their southern rival, the Benyan government ordered its navy to impose a blockade of Muran. The belief was that with the war in the Brown Sea, Gramatia would not come to aid.

Nevertheless, this was a serious miscalculation. When news broke on the early morning of September 11th, that Muran was fighting against an impediment invasion by Benya, the Imperial Army mobilized 1170 legions, while Gramatia’s Eastern Fleet sent twenty squadrons to support Muran’s defense. As the Benyan army could only mobilize 820 legions, the government in Undersaft came to the conclusion that their only hope to defeat Gramatia in a land war, was by attacking by air.

On September 20th the Benyan Air Force flew into Gramatian airspace and attempted to destroy several military installation in the Northern parts of the Commonwealth. However, Imperial Air Defense batteries were able to knock out half of the planes before they could reach their targets and the Imperial Air Force immediately started a counter-attack. And so started the first war between Gramatia and Benya on their own territories since the 1100s.

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