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Zion
Associated MERC-NET Contracts:

     FW-AS-06-01      FW-ES-06-01

Region: Free Worlds League
Ambassador: John Smith
X:15.39 Y:-83.98
Planetary Capital: Beersheba
Primary Climate: Temperate
Approximate Population: 925 Million People
Days to Jump Point:12.89 days
Planet Details:

Early History

A contemporary of the nearby world of Liao, by 2202 Zion was importing considerable quantities of cattle, sheep, thoroughbred horses and cattle from Liao, or, as it was known until the death of Elias Liao, Cynthiana. As one of the worlds outside the boundary of the Terran Alliance following the Demarcation Declaration issued in 2240 Zion became an independent world. Zion was one of a number of client states that joined the Capellan Hegemony in the 2280s and 2290s, and along with Asuncion constituted one of the Capellan Hegemony worlds closest to Terra.

Age of War

Captain-General Allan Marik fought a four-year war between 2366 and 2369 that conquered a number of worlds controlled by House Liao, including Andurien, Berenson and Zion. Allan Marik's conquests subsequently became the subject of decades of conflict between the Confederation and the League.
Second Succession War

In 2832 the Free Worlds League was already at war with the Lyran Commonwealth at the time, but Captain-General Charles Marik felt confident enough that he was prepared to open a second front and attacked the Capellan Confederation. Zion was captured along with the worlds of Berenson and Kyrkbacken by what proved to be a a hugely successful Free Worlds League Military offensive led by the Fusiliers of Oriente that struck the Sarna Commonality. In addition to capturing the three significant worlds the FWLM forces also heavily damaged several other Capellan worlds but were unable to capture the worlds of Elnath and Ventabren.


Third Succession War

In 2910 Zion was struck by the noted Free Worlds League Military Red Rover task force in the culmination of a series of deep penetration raids conducted against the Capellan Confederation from 2901 onwards. Red Rover contained units from both the Defenders of Andurien and the Orloff Grenadiers and launched a series of raids targetting key Capellan Confederation Armed Forces supply depots, although the strong reserve forces established by Chancellor Otto Liao stopped the FWLM forces from remaining on any of the Capellan worlds. Having already hit the worlds of Aldebaran, Shensi and Nanking[45] the Red Rover forces captured a fully-laden iceship named the Silver Frost in the Buenos Aires system, before then attacking Zion with a multi-pronged assault that saw the defenders routed from their fortified bases in the Gapston mountain range.

In 2941 agents operating on behalf of Captain-General Samuel Marik convinced Vincente Sian-Marik to sign a treaty with the Free Worlds League transferring his allegiance and those of the worlds he administered to the League. In addition to being the planetary administrator of Kyrkbacken, Ohrensen, Suzano, Ventabren and Zion, Sian-Marik was a distant relative of the Marik line; while the CCAF garrisons on the five worlds didn't try to resist the transfer of worlds, they did engage in widespread scorched-earth operations on each world to inflict as much damage as possible prior to the transfer. As a consequence the acquisition of the five worlds saddled the Free Worlds League with a significant and expensive rebuilding programme. Given that Sian-Marik's ancestors had fled the Free Worlds League after a failed campaign of terrorism and atrocities conducted against civilians and House Marik in an attempt to secure what they saw as their birthright in the twenty-fourth and twenty-fifth centuries Vincente was never trusted by Samuel Marik, and the worlds Vincente brought with him, which constituted the Sian-Marik family holdings, were instead carved up to form two new League provinces based out of Ohrensen and Zion.


[3067]

Having escaped from the clutches of the loathed Capellan Confederation, Zion’s people found the prospect of a dynastic marriage between the Marik and Liao families too much to bear. In the mid-3050s, the world of Zion and its attendant province erupted in a violent rebellion, put down by the FWLM in a bloody campaign. The collapse of the marriage deal and its attendant alliance in the early 3060s came as a bitter irony, considering the many scars of the abortive revolt that remain in settlements across this planet. The arid expanse of the Negbek Desert suffered the most when the pipeline that supplied its outlying settlements with fresh water from Lake Aleppo was sundered in several places. For the duration of the revolt, local farmsteads and communities were forced to rely on small water-extraction and desalination plants; only after the FWLM occupation were engineers able to patch the pipeline system. A military occupation force remains on Zion, under the command of Géné Ward, but the general takes a hands-off approach to commercial affairs and the economy has made a surprising recovery.

Trade with the Federated Suns is brisk, as is that with the independent
worlds of the former Sarna March. Even Capellan merchants journey to trade in Zion’s bazaars, but for the most part they maintain a low profile and keep to their own enclaves in the capital, Beersheba. Only the seemingly endless series of terrorist attacks by radicals has prevented the return of civil government, the need to neutralize the scattered cells taking precedence over the return of civil liberties. For the most part, the population does not object to this continuing “soft occupation,” regarding the handful of troublemakers in their midst as a threat to their own lives. Most locals see the terrorists’ actions as
opportunistic rather than linked to Zion’s own anti-Capellan agenda.

[3084]
The situation on Zion improved through the 3070s but only marginally so. During the Civil War, a number of terrorist attacks sprung up, in support of one side or another with the FWLM forced to fight all comers. The new military leadership of the planet, General Raymand Rockwell, is perceived by the public as an improvement over his predecessors. General Rockwell has achieved an effective carrot and stick balance to handling local troubles. It is likely that he'll need every ounce of that skill. The recently signed Vakarel Peace Accords has stirred the pot of anger among the anti-Capellan crowds on Zion.

Technological Development:

Some advancement; poor educational systems; medical care at level of 21st-22nd century; microelectronics industry non-existent; some areas with higher rating possible, but privately run/held.

Industrial Level:

Basic heavy industry at level of 22nd century; fusion engines possible but no complex products (including BattleMechs).

Raw Material Dependence:

World/system produces all the raw materials needed and occasionally exports a small surplus.

Industrial Output:

World has a small industrial base that may produce a limited number of products for export.

Agricultural Development:

World has abundant environment producing enough to sustain the population using agriculture technologies; limited exports.