A Look At The Various Conflicts Around The World

by Headsplit

First published

A short glimpse into some of the numerous wars, revolts, tragedies and rivalries that plague the world. Based on reports from those of all races and backgrounds to inform the world (or plainly the interested) in what's going on around the glob

"Within these pages are summaries of what history shall remember far better than peace and harmony: War, hate, rivalry, and even genocide. From wars as old as the Griffonian continent to bitter civil wars and glorious revolutions, the world is far from one of love and tolerance. It's a place that on the surface is cynical and disheartening. What's underneath is even more so dear readers."-Pre-emblem

Written for the 2019 Equestria at War writing contest and thus is set within its world. Equestria at War is a mod for Paradox Interactive 'Hearts Of Iron 4'! If you own the game, I highly recommend you look up the mod on the workshop as it has effort and hard work from dozens of talented modders, coders, modelers, and artist who have made something I have spent hundreds of hours enjoying. With that explanation aside, enjoy the little dumb lore thing I've made (Note: some liberties have been taken with minor lore for flavor and there are likely mistakes because we all human y'all)

All credit to Winter Breeze for his/ her amazing editing! I couldn't ah done it without em!

‘House Erie or House Eyrie’

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There’s an old joke in the old Griffionian Kingdom lands “Place your bets: House Erie or House Eyrie.” It refers to a conflict that by some accounts, has been going on between two groups of minor noble families since the very founding of the Griffion Kingdom and some sources say even before that, to the very first settling of griffions in the area around Lake Rumare, one of the largest lakes in Central Griffiona. And reportedly, once one of the most fertile areas surrounding it. Given how House Eyrie borders the griffion homeland of Griffionstone and lays just across the lake from the starting point of the ancient Sparletan Empire, it's likely these are some of the oldest settled lands in the continent.

The official conflict stems from the fact that both parties claim the others land as their rightful territory, though if you were to ask a normal peasant grif from either, they could give you a whole myriad of reasons, some of which are listed below.

“Why, it's because those lying bastards claim my land is theirs!”- House Eriean peasant farmer

“We’ve always hated those Eyrieans because their fool of a leaders great great great great great whatever is the idiot who lost the idol of Boreas!”- House Eriean Noblegriff

“Nonsense, we fight over the name, plain and simple. We can’t both have such a similar name can we?”- House Eyriean scholar

“I’m just here for the coin.”- Griffion later found to be a local mercenary

To observers like those in Northwestern House Avian, who are the ones most interested in watching how the conflicts develop, say the skirmishes and wars are more of a distraction or a sport than anything either nation seems to take seriously anymore. It has almost become routine for the nations to get into a border war over something silly, fight for a bit and then sign a temporary truce. In very few cases has this escalated into something that has lasted for more than a few weeks or months and even then, neither is able to support a full-time war for long.

“After every planting season, as the peasants begin to grow bored and think of all the petty troubles they have and all the faults in their leaders, the leaders of both begin to worry. Said mostly incompetent leaders then begin to lay the blame on the aforementioned petty issues on the other, reminding of previous losses and almost ‘total’ victories that in reality meant very little. By the end of the month, the peasants are already baying for blood and the aristocrats who run these countries oblige them. At least until harvesting season.”- House Avian scholars writing on the cycle of warfare present in both countries.

While these nations are rather insignificant on their own and hold no real value in their location or land, except if one perhaps wishes to build a nice home along Lake Rumare, the constant small wars and skirmishes has led to something of a concentrated testing ground for the weapons of war slowly emerging on the continent or spreading from overseas. Most recently, it was rumored and then confirmed that the small but wealthy nation of Skyfall (who’s own political upheaval will be covered later) decided to test the new tractor tanks it was thinking of buying from Equestria by sending one to each nation. To put the performance briefly, here is an excerpt from Skyfalls response to Equestria, “Had we wanted something slow and unworkable, we’d have only need to put one of our boats upon land.”

Given the constant cycle of war these houses find themselves in and their almost appalling lack of money, industry or a standard of living, they are unlikely to refuse a shipment of weapons from anyone in the world, even at the stipulation they must give them back. Whatever money the rulers manage to rip from the poor peasantry of their lands are given not back to the people, but to so-called ‘seasonal’ mercenary knight bands who come to the area whenever fighting begins and will fight for either side, reportedly often switching even mid-battle, for whoever pays them more. Be it in gold, ale or harlots.

Is this conflict likely ever to end? Not without outside intervention or one somehow gaining a sudden advantage over the other. But seeing as how many countries have enough to worry about and won’t likely care enough to waste time to ever intervene. As for the two nations themselves, in their single-minded focus to end one each other, they are unlikely to ever see about the way of doing it.

“If I had to speak of every war in those two backwater countries, I would never get anything done.”- Emperor Grover V when asked of the conflict

“We shall probably continue to monitor the situation until Boreas himself returns.”- Lady Rivertail, the current ruler of House Avian

“The most inconvenient part of them fighting it out? The noise. It scares the fish.”- Rumarian fishergriff

‘The Yak Way Or The Jak Way?’

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The continent of Equus is often thought to be a peaceful one and when one were to compare it to the lands of the griffions or of the far east, they might not be entirely wrong. Very few open conflicts have happened in hundreds if not thousands of years, the closest to full escalation being the failed Changelings infiltration of Canterlot. But if one is too look under the surface, one might see the underlying tensions in and between the countries that make up the continent. Be it the political strife in the Changeling lands as they vie for power or the claimant of another on the Olenia throne, it would seem to be a slowly growing powderkeg.

Of all this strife, the least interesting, most secluded and possibly least impactful on the overall geo-political situation would have to be the civil war taking place in the isolated and rocky nation of Yakyakistan between Prince Rutherford and his brother, Prince Bradford over not who is the rightful ruler to the ancient title of ruler of the Yaks, but which is better: Yaks, or Jaks

Now to the outsider, this would appear to be simple Yakish foolishness that could be fixed by some outside remediation but that is not the case as any attempts at talks have failed, the only success being a temporary ceasefire while both sides prepare for ancient customs and growing season. One must look further into this to understand where the issue lies and why they refuse to listen to even their close friends in Equestria.

Prince Rutherford took power after the brothers father died, and being the eldest of the two, this was no problem and Prince Bradford made no objections, giving the transition to power a smooth ride. Problems began however when Prince Rutherford decided to end the country's long record of absolute isolation, allowing ponies and griffions from Equestria and Nova Griffiona respectively to visit and even allowed an Equestrian ambassador to be semi present. Complaints from elders began when Rutherford began industrialization and modernization programs for the nations roads, schools and workshops. They claimed he was trying to ruin the Yak way of life that had been cultivated so thoroughly by their isolation but many elders whispered this is secret as it was long considered unbefitting of an elder to disrespect his rightful ruler.

Prince Bradford however, refused to follow such rules, and openly criticised his brother, claiming that he was no longer fit to truly lead the Yaks to greatness. Others began to join him, specifically, elders from the incredibly traditionalist Jaki-clan who resided in the most easterly end of the kingdom. Prince Rutherford, in a fit of rage caused by receiving a letter from his brother that is essense read “Give up throne or else Prince get SMASHED!”, ordered his brother to be brought before him so he might answer for his threats and criticism. Bradford got wind of this from supportful elders and fled to the Jaki-clans lands. The elders of the area welcomed the prince, of who’s thoughts lined up closely with their own about the king, and were absolutely infuriated to learn what Rutherford had demanded, believing him to have overstepped his power. They not only declared their clan independent from the kingdom but declared Bradford to be rightful king of the Yaks.

The entire nation was thrown into a tizzy, each clan being sent a request to join the Jak cause and see the true Yak placed back upon the throne. In an unprecedented moment of true passion and leadership, Prince Rutherford was able to bring forth every elder from every other clan and convince them, despite what they thought of him or of their incredible differences in the direction that Yakyakistan should head in, to join forces for one goal: Destroy the traitorous Jaks and make the nation whole once more.

“The Jaks might be able to smash one Yak, but they will never smash hoard of Yaks!”-Finishing line of Prince Rutherford's speech, given thunderous stomping and applause

The populous too had to be convinced, but when the difference in their standard of living and those living in the resistant Jak area along with Yak stubbornness to accept anyone who disobeys the king and elders, it was relatively easy. Few joined the Jaks and many called for the homeland to be reunited even if through violence of which neither prince was against using, making war inevitable.

The troops were mustered and war was formally declared by both in the traditional Yak way of war horns being blown before the first charge, with Crystal Empire miners in the Crystal Mountain Range able to hear the distinct call.

“Its something between a war cry and the screams of those sent to Tartarus. I damn near thought Sombra was returning for a moment.”- Imperial mine forepone on the first Yak-Jak war horns

Given the terrain of rocky, hilly frozen wasteland, it's not hard to see why even Yaks, heavily adapted to fighting in this climate, had a hard time attacking each way. However, Prince Rutherfords troops had a major advantage in the fact they used up to date rifles purchased from Nova Griffiona along with heavy guns and support weaponry from Stalliongrad while Bradfords troops used largely traditional weapons or long obsolete muskets. Had the worst winter in the region not come recently, it is likely the Jaks would have been easily overcome through sheer technology advantages. However, the already hard to navigate and fight in terrain became almost impossible to even move in when blizzards and storms began to pound the whole region even earlier than normal in the frozen country. This led to an outright stalemate, during which Equestria sent envoys to both sides in an attempt to end the close to home conflict.

Long time envoy to the Jaks, PInkie Pie, the element of laughter, was sent to Prince Rutherford while one of Equestrias top diplomats to Prince Bradford. Given the stubbornness of Yaks, these ponies had their work cut for them. For months they didn’t get anywhere with either one, not even able to get the two in the same room without them trying to kill each other. That was until they managed to appeal to the only thing able to get past a Yaks stubbornness: tradition

Prince Rutherford was questioned how sad and unhappy all his Yaks might become if they were too busy fighting to do all the reeeeaalllly fun things that Yaks did for tradition while Bradford was shown that if he were to miss traditional feasts, dances and events, it might well led to him being considered illegitimate as well. In the end, the two brothers were able to hash out a hasty and temporary ceasefire that, for now, holds up.

For now this war remains small and overall insignificant, with only Equestria interested in brokering peace and reintegration. Nova Griffiona and Stalliongrad remain neutral though have been accused of selling weapons to Prince Bradford, allowing for his suddenly modernized and well equipped army to rival that of Rutherfords. Both countries have denied any involvement.

“Their must be peace everywhere on Equus if we wish to remain safe.”- Princess Celestia on the Equestrian push for peace in the region

“I know that Yaks smash Rutherford but… can’t they also make up?”- Pinkie Pie, Equestrian envoy to Yakyakistan to Prince Ruthferord regarding peace talks

“Ponies weak because they want peace! Jaks smash Yaks!”- Jak-clan soldier

“Ponies need to stay out of yak business! Yaks smash Jaks!”-Yakyakistan soldier

‘The Living And The Dead’

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In the far north of the Griffionian continent, there are few creatures be they pony, griffion or any other who call the land home. The few tribes of hill ponies who do stay there are often forgotten even by their eastern kin. Above even those middling, dirt poor farmers are two groups even more forgotten and far more ancient. So secluded that some say they make the backwardness of the hills tribes look almost like modernization at its finest. That they are lost time to history and time. That they only continue to exist to fight each other: The Arcturian Order and the Dread League.

The Arcturian Order is a holy order founded approximately nine hundred to one thousand years ago by Desmond the Fell-Claw. Its basis is the faith and ideals of 12 churches in worship to the Holy Light, which they claim has holy powers against the dead and the necromancers who raise the dead. It is made up of both griffion knights, holy clerics and even ponies making it an odd group who stand together against their ancient foes who inhabit the aptly named Dread Peninsula where darkness and death has reigned at least since the first ‘Long Night’ march of the dead took place. This ‘Long Night’ led the area just outside the peninsula, its old name lost to time, to become the area the holy order swears to try and contain the darkness.

Seeing as almost all writing or information to trickle out to the world of the Dread League is through the Arcturian Order, and they share very little of what they do have, it is hard to find any sort of writing that does not boil down to how unholy and evil the very existence of these necromancers is. However, during the creation of this document, a few pieces of text led to believe this conflict is far more vital than others might believe.
This is what is openly known of the Orders opponent, the Dread League is this: they are a small group powerful of necromancers who make their home in Magehold keep. On their own, these necromancers are just those tempted and corrupted by dark magics either ages ago or otherwise. It is said something draws to the area, so that they may convene and attempt to take over the world with swarms of undead skeletons and zombies along with vampirish thralls. It is said that their only opponent is their oldest one. The Holy Arcturian Order, who they seek to destroy at any given time.

Both of these nations are isolated, locked away in their own world of darkness and death. By all accounts, they are backwards in industry and social advances, more akin to life as it was when they began their fight between darkness and light. Sword, spear and shield are not obsolete but rather the norm, with full plate armor instead of modern military uniform. Both have one absolute ruler. A Headmaster for the Order and a Necromancer Council Leader for the League who govern above their subjects with their word being law. That is where their similarities cease however.

The Order is like that of a typical aristocratic griffion nation, with only instead top church officials and a headmaster instead of nobles and a king. They look over the elite knights who make up the majority of the fighting force at any given time and the largely farming peasantry who can be pressed into service at any time. While perhaps less oppressive than other forms of this type of government due to the “all in this together” mentality present throughout the country, it is no less unequal at its core.

The Dread League on the other hoof has very few actual living beings within her borders, almost all of which are the necromancers whole make up the council that decides the new leader whenever needed. Most of its denizens are ancient dead or magical creatures risen and called upon to do the typical busy work that any commoner might do, including working in what few workshops the land has or filling the ranks of its often vast but weak army. Magic is what allows this rabblish force of the undead to be made and controlled, hurling themselves at the Holy Orders lines fearing neither pain nor death, marching tirelessly through the frozen north in their advance.

While it is not known exactly who is in charge of the League currently, rumors tell of a young but powerful unicorn who has recently become the next candidate, whose sights are likely already set on but one goal: To see Tarpain Rock's walls crumble, and the world beyond it burn. But, is that their only goal?

“Many believe this conflict will end with the destruction of our blessed Holy Order. They think that that is all the unholy and damned from Magehold will want is our bodies to join their ranks finally. While this may be one of their goals, in no small part will they stop their. We shall merely become pawns in the next Dark Crusade, and should we fall and no one pay it mind, then it might just be successful.”- Arcturian writing, attributed to a holy knight

What is this Dark Crusade? It is put simply the deads march upon the living, to make sure that only those who controlled the armies of the dead have any power in the world and to recreate the “Dead Empire” across all of the known world. To exingust the light and fill the void with darkness. The Dread Leagues ultimate dream of world domination.

One might wonder how a frozen nation of the dead nearly a millennium behind in all technology who seems unable to defeat even their nearest equal, let alone the modern countries which most who read this likely reside. It might seem silly to think these shut in crazy magical beings could one day march for world domination, but one must look closer to see that the idea isn’t as outlandish as one might think.

The League has several things to its advantage currently, the most prominent of which is the disunity and weakness of the nations in the Griffionian continent who would could fall one by one, letting them grow more powerful as they conquered lands up to date in industry and capturing the most modern weaponry available. Eventually they could snowball into being able to take on even the most powerful countries in their path.

Another aspect to take into consideration is the dead that comprise their army who are, as stated before, are untiring, unwavering and unending. An army who needs no food, no rest, has no other goal but their orders and whose ranks would in theory never end as any dead from a battle can simply be replaced from the fresh stock of enemies recently passed.

Finally, one must remember these necromancers have more than their armies or the magic used to make them, but ancient spells long lost to time. The Order has in recent years claimed they can feel the unholy magics being practiced with more and more frequency, admitting they themselves have very little idea the extent of what these magics can do.

So while the idea of invading dead armies invading the known world might seem like something out of a story book, should you ever hear tell of the fall of an old griffion knightly holy order somewhere in the fringes of the world, remember that those dead do walk the very earth you and I do.

*Do to lack of access, there are no ending quotes available

‘The Kings Peasants Or Every Peasant A King?'

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Nestled in the southeast of Griffonia sit many minor kingdoms once a part of the continent spanning Griffion Empire that fell apart for more reasons than can be reasonably explained here. Needless to say, civil strife and harsh rulers are nothing unique in the areas.

However, what makes the revolution in the area of ‘Prywhen’ within the Kingdom of Brodfield unique is their leader:The infamous and outspoken father of Griffonian communism, Filip Redglad.

The peasants revolting do so under the banner of well known and outspoken Griffionian communist Filip Redglad who leads the so called Griffion Liberation Army against the King of Brodfield, Kloseu de Kissau. The revolt is distinctly Marxist, vowing to liberate the oppressed working class of Brodfield and Prywhen at large with a state manifesto outlying collectivization, public education, access to free healthcare and creation or expansion of various other social programs. While surrounded on all sides by monarchist or totalitarianism forces, they hold believe that they shall free the working griffs of all of southern Griffiona, whether it be through passive persuasion or force.

The King of Brodfield has reigned over the area of Prywhen since at least the collapse of the Empire from which they declared independence, never being truly dependent on them anyway. In comparison to a majority of his neighbors however, his reign has been short. He refuses to give in to any compromise and has vowed to eradicate the ‘demonish communist bastards’ who ‘dare revolt in my rightful land!”

Neighbors of the area of the bandit kingdom of Blackhallow to the west, the fellow minor kingdom of The Principality of Lushi to the north, the nomads of the Gryphian Host to the northeast, the County of Cyanolisia to the southwest and the traders in the Free Towns of Gryphus to the southeast all look to the area with baited breath, wondering who will come out on top. Even regional powers like Wingbardy or nearby nations in the River Coalition look on, gazing from their peripherals the outcome of this bloody civil war.

Having only started 2 years ago, one would be forgiven for believing the conflict had in fact been going on for for far longer given the levels of destruction and desperation present.

“Starving chicks fill out hastily stitched uniforms, armed not with rifles but with sticks painted to look like them. Any passing griffion may be conscripted or detained at any point by a royal official or guard, even shot with only a brief order from a high ranking officer. Every household has been turned into a mini fortress and is occupied by soldiers who demand to be fed although there is no food to give.”- Report given to a Wingbardian reporter interviewing a Brodfieldian peasant on the civil war

“The GLA keep promising us victory, keep promising us peace and prosperity and food. The only thing I’ve seen them do is take the food from the fields not burned or tramped, seen them take every young grif from my village and force them into war, seen them force griffs like me into the factories for 14 hour shifts.”- Prywhen griffion to an Imperial mercenary

“While they claim to be opposite to each other, the only thing I have seen from either side of this war is cruelty and oppression.”- An unknown griffions journal found by a River Republic aid worker after the recapture of a contested village

While it’s true that for years before outright rebellion, there was always tension between the peasantry and the ruling aristocracy, and that underground communist militias had harassed the kings rule before the outbreak, neither warrants the unforeseen and outright appalling situation unfolding within the country. So just what led to this situation and the level of suffering it is bringing upon both sides in this conflict?

The country already had numerous issues plaguing other griffion nations in the area: lack of modernization, almost no modern industry, an illiterate and poverty striken population with an incompetent and cold nobility at the head. That being said, compared to the Central Griffion Empire and even her more dependent neighbors, the area was largely stable even after the collapse of the Empire with abundant food making life for the peasants much easier than those elsewhere.

This abundance however came with a price: a monoculture of almost entirely rice. While it would make the land rich from exports by virtue of being cheap and easy to grow, said economic focus also made both the nation's economy and populace heavily dependant on rice. Then, in 995, a blight struck the rice. Blamed largely in part on the Kings land policies and export focused economy, the country was thrown into economic and political chaos that only ended in 1001 when the King took on extreme powers in an effort to regain order. This was only after one fifth of the countries population had starved, almost any wealth the nation possessed had been drained and communist revolutionaries, who had taken root due to the pre famine greedy noble landowners, became deeply entrenched.

Despite the chaos and the Kings now overwhelming powers of which he did not use sparingly, the country was slowly but surely returning to how it was before. However, the already unpopular king became hated by his people and most of the communist and their largest paramilitary force the ‘Griffion Liberation Army’ or GLA. In 1003, an attempt was made on the kings life while watching a military parade, and whilst the king lived with no more than a deep and distinct scar along his cheek, his wife was fatally injured, dying in his arms shortly after. Despite the perpetrator being shot down the moment in their attempt to kill the king and an investigation finding it impossible to link the act to any one group, the King was furious and blamed the GLA for his wife's death.

“It was on the day my mother was buried that my father, the griffion who I knew deep down cared deeply for his people, was also laid to rest.”- Prince Tomado de Kissau on his father after the death of the Queen of Brodfield

What followed was a reign of terror known as the ‘Red Hunt’ or the ‘Month of the Burning Field’ depending which side you ask. Hundreds of communist, socialist and innocent griffs were arrested or simply shot. Eventually the commoners who had long grown tired of their tyrannical king, impoverished life and overbearing nobles began to revolt, rallying around the charismatic GLA commander Filip Redglade. The Kings army was forced to fight a retreating battle to the areas more loyal to the king around the capital of Kivessin and the important port of Sydia while the revolutionaries control the more rural and sparsely populated regions of Whiteflower and Lifov. Both sides are locked into a game of push and take, local militias and guerrials making taking territory difficult for either side, locking them in temporary stalemates.

So far, thousands have died from not only warfare and ‘collateral damage’ but from famine, disease and lack of shelter. Thousands more have migrated to surrounding countries, causing something of a refugee crises as these starving, ragged griffions arrive at ports and border crossing in droves, begging for entry and for a chance at a better life.

“So far, even being homeless has been better than life anywhere in Brodfield.”- Brodfieldian refugee who arrived in Sunset before the port of Sydia was closed

“Please, take me to prison! Take me to the dungeons! Take me anywhere but back to my home!”- Refugee pleads with Lushian troops after being found sneaking into the country

“I might love my king and my country, but I love my family far more.”- Deserting Brodfield officer on why he fled his post to the Free Towns of Gryphus

So far, both sides have only accepted limited outside help despite nations including New Mareland, WIngbardy, River Republic and several Imperial states offers to send intense civilian aid. It is rumored however both eagerly accept military and engineering assistance from any of their few neighbors who have yet to declare any official neutrality, with those who have being adamant they care neither side of the conflict. Other nations including Skyfall, Stalliongrad and even Wingbardy have been accused of and denied claims of profiteering off the war.

“The Prince sees no reason to intervene with the conflicts of other nations and declares complete and utter impartiality.”- Lushian declaration on the civil war

“A conclusion has been reached among the shipwrights and guild masters: it is not good for profits and thus is not our problem.”- Master Yeve, head trade master of the Free Towns of Gryphus

“We have decided to simply ignore the Kingdom of Brodfield and its petty problems.” Countess Taillow Marshquil of Cyanolisia

Despite these claims, it is rumored almost of all them have sent aid of some type to the country through secret shipments of weapons or military attaches sent under the guise of but a few of the many mercenaries involved in the conflict. Others like the bandits of Blackhallow or the cossacks of Gryphus had decided to take advantage of the conflict and launch raids into the territory of both revolutionaries and loyalist. Given how both have no troops to spare fending off these attacks, they are said to go unopposed and only add to the misery of those living on the borders of these countries. It is assumed many local powers support the King out of sheer hatred of communism and hope to see it utterly eradicated from the continent, with King Moriset Discret of Aquilla, who’s country’s own internal strife is covered later on, saying this on the subject

“If you must, burn every rice field, every cottage, every forest, swamp, smoke out every cave or mine. Anyone who steps out of line, shoot them. Any village that rebels hail from, leave it empty. Do whatever must be done to keep the scourge of communism off of Griffionia!”- King Moriset in a letter to the king of Brodfield

And across the bright blue sea, the leader of The United Soviets of Stalliongrad, Altidiya, said this in support of the revolutionaries efforts, being the first and so far only one to recognize the revolutionaries as an independent country.

“My brothers and sisters, my far away grffion comrades, remember your cause is just! That you fight for the ever oppressed workers of not only Prywhen but the world! That no matter what, you shall win in the hearts and minds of the people and with that comes total victory! No oppressor can truly crush the spirit of the working griffion or pony!”-Altidiya in a speech upon the arrival of a smuggled Prywhenian representative to Saint Petershoof

This civil war has not only exposed the cracks within Brodfield but even within other nations. Several neighboring countries are rumored to have underground communist rebel cells either inspired by or directly from those in Prywhen, lending more credence to the idea that many will rally to crush the communist which they see as a dire threat to their own stability.

So we get to the question once again: when will this war end and what will be the consequences of it? It largely depends not just on who wins but how they win, in what shape the country is left in when it does end and what whichever government is the winner decides to do to stabilize the nation.

Should the King overcome the revolutionaries is it assumed his son, the much more moderate and liberal Prince Tomado, can convince his father to spare a majority of the country from the ‘violet eyed rage’ of which the king is well known for, even if only after more Hunts take place. It is hoped that eventually, through careful action,the pair can turn the country into a modernized, model constitutional monarchy where the grifs are happy and well fed from a reformed agriculture sector rejuvenated by outside aid and looking back on past mistakes. And if one were an idealist, the bond between the people and the king would regrow, leading to almost any scars being erased. However, this all depends on the son opposing his stern and untempered father who is not one to forgive and forget by all accounts.

Others fear the Kingdom could become even more tyrannical under a even more radical and zealous king who expands his already vast authority to take out all his rage on an already suffering peasantry, possibly even his so far supportful nobles. In this scenario, it is assumed that any reform, aside from those to make the loyal military complacent and better to enact his whims, will come not from willingly out of love of his people but begrudging acceptance in a need to rebuild and advance to continue to keep his country solvent or fend off outsiders who see a dying state ripe for the pickings. Should he do so, it is impossible to tell if another civil war is in the future, but it would the life of the Brodfieldian people would only worsen. But even with this darkness, the king might eventually pass and allow his son to fix his grave mistakes.

In the alternative likelihood, should the communist forces overcome their monarchy, is it almost assured the King shall be executed, his son killed imprisoned or exiled, and the nobility's powers destroyed along with many noble griffs being killed or captured.The policies promised in the manifesto and numerous other reforms enacted slowly as the country rebuilds itself while having to remain vigilant for raids or invasion from its neighbors, fearful and angry by the outcome and destruction of the status quo. In that case, the weakened state with no one around to aid it would almost surely fall and likely be either occupied or whatever dynasty left reinstated.

Should the new communist government stay alive long enough to do so, it would likely go one of two ways: settle into a peaceful, internal looking communist nation that would be militarized to avoid being destroyed while still providing the best life possible to her people. Or, it could attempt to spread the revolution to its neighbors one by one, helping to topple governments in place for hundreds of years, swooping in to help and protect their new now communist friend. When this is impossible, they will mobilize their loyal masses of the proletariat to liberate those fellow oppressed working classes, though given the country's limited population size and lack of military industry it is unknown how successful they could be in conquest.

“I wouldn’t know, I’ve only ever killed communist.”- A griffion mercenary fighting for Brodfield to a New Mareland reporter about the emotional toll of killing griffions

“That cruel tyrant seems to forget who made this land great once! It was not him! It was not the church! It was not the nobles! It was the working griffion and he will soon remember this!”- GLA commander to troops right before an attack

“The people of Brodfield wanted what any griffion deserves: self determination and fair treatment by their ruler. They got what any tyrant shall give: Bullets and empty bellies.”- President-Marshal Kemerskia, leader of the Griffion Republic and staunch anti monarchist and communist figure on the Brodfieldian civil war

‘For King, For God or For Harmony

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Returning to Equus for our next entry, we see not a nation in constant war with a hated enemy or even one embroiled in civil war but one in a precarious situation: cold and snowy, rural, largely unmodernized and unindustrialized filled with civil strife with the added downside of being sandwiched between two of the greatest powers of the world, the semi-united Changeling Lands and Equestria. This nation is the snowy homeland of the deer: Olenia.

This civil strife comes at perhaps the worst time possible for the nation, to the degree that some decry the gods for their troubles. Yet it is plain to see where it comes from, as plain as the coronation day of King Johan Jelzek, who has since been christened ‘Djavulen’ or ‘Devil’ by his people. The illegitimate son of King Aldar II who unlawfully seized power from and then exiled his half-sister Velvet who now waits in Equestria, trying to gather support from the Canterlot elite.

Under King Johans rule, corruption has run rampant to a point where practically nothing is done without a generous ‘donation’ to the local Jarl or Noble. And even then, there is no guarantee as they hold all the power, land and wealth to themselves and this has not only been allowed by the King but encouraged in order to cement support amongst the rich. This unprecedented level of corruption has caused harmonist and communist movements to spark up among the populace and even the armies ranks who’s patience grows thin.

While the nation has always been troubled due to its sparse population, self dependent rural culture and lack of innovation, its conditions were severely worsened when its largest trade partner Equestria not only severed ties with the country but imposed harsh sanctions which it has enforced strictly. Where before Olenian traders and merchants could hope to sell cheap Equestrian goods at reasonable prices, they have had no choices but to increase prices beyond almost any reasonable wage of any Olenian farmer or labourer, as the nations small cottage industry and localized putting-out guild system fail to provide adequate supply. Add this to the ridiculous tax and rent rates charged by landowners to their subsistence farming population and a lack of oversight from officials not completely corrupt do to poor centralization of said nobles and one might see why the average deer would wish to end the system that has reigned for so long by the return of the reform minded Queen Velvet.

Even within old friends of the monarchs there is trouble; on one end, incredibly nationalistic and militaristic voices call for the return of their 'glory days' when Olenian raiders and their navies were amongst the most feared and where the church held an incredible sway over the nation. While on the opposite side of that spectrum, socialist and communist agitators call for a working deers paradise and the absolute abolishment of the monarchy, nobles, and church in a similar model to Stalliongrad who the King has accused of stirring tensions. Yet none of these internal threats hold a candle to the powers they are surrounded by.

To the east lies Equestria that, while dormant, might be willing to stir in order to return harmony should extreme forces take hold or Velvet able to convince enough nobles in Canterlot to intervene. It is speculated that should intervention occur, the Olenians might actually be able to hold the Equestrians near the Vanhoover straight before the nation properly mobilized. To their north however lays the much more concerning, militaristic and expansionist Changelings Lands who are said to eye Olenia's vast but untapped natural resources, all of which would greatly advance the rapidly growing Changeling fleets and armies. It is rumored the lands would not only supply resources but be a long term supply of food and a jumping off for an invasion of Equestria. This in part might explain might explain why Equestria's attention is so heavily focused on Olenia as Changeling units mass on their border and internal issues worsen with every strike, every march, every military officer who openly supports one of the side veering for control of the country. It would seem that if the country does not tear itself apart, the Changelings will be happy to do so to the chagrin (to say the least) of Equestria.

While the King seems set on crushing opposition under an iron hoof, it is impossible to say what the outcome of these various results could be as all are so small or unorganized as to be too early to tell. Whether the King will succeed is also unseen at this time.

“The Deer of Olenian shall be free, despite what my tyrant of a half brother might believe.”- Queen Velvet

“My sister fails to see that a strong male leader is needed to bring Olenian into the future and protect her people. Not some prissy doe with weak ideas.”- King Johan

“The wolves will eat well this winter on Olenias hollow corpse.”- Olenian officers pessimistic take on potential war with the Changelings

For the Republic!’

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On the other side of the world, in the southeast of Griffiona, sits another kingdom once grand that has now fallen to strife and hard times. That kingdom being Kingdom of Aquiliea, known for its wine(second to the Strawberry Dutchy of Central Griffionia), strange arts and architecture. Oh and of course, revolution.

In 980, the ancient ruling dynasty Discret was forced to flee their ancient lands after the nations peasants revolted, having grown sick of incompetent and cruel leaders abusing them (one might begin to notice a pattern in these revolts). After a short but bloody revolution, the King was deposed, his entire line along with any noble who had refused to help banished on pain of death and the nation turned into a Republic, possibly the first on the continent.

The first sparks of the Aquilian Revolution came on July 14th when citizens of Aqulia, hungry and tired from a days long strike at a nearby factory, stormed the local prison freeing workers and strike leaders while gaining access to its small armory in the process. The riot turned into a bloodbath when the prisons warden was murdered, his decapitated body strung up over the prisons main gate, and many more on both sides joined him in the ensuing firefight. Many in the underground media reported the incident as a slaughtering of peaceful workers under the kings order, leading to more uprisings and revolts throughout the countryside, several other riots and massacres taking place just in Aqulia alone. Eventually, the King managed to lower tensions temporarily through repression and likely phoney promises for reform in his corrupt and decadent government. It almost seemed he might be able to hold onto power against the unorganized and undersupplied yet numerous revolts. That was until the Friends of The Republic got involved.

The Friends of the Republic was a group of workers, small merchants, wealthy peasants, sympathetic and often minor nobility, lawyers, aristocrats, students who had almost all traveled abroad and taken upon ideas almost unknown in the country or even the continent. Moreover, and despite their name, they were a coalition of Republicans, Socialist, Conservatives, Liberals, Social Democrats, Nationalist and various other groups whose main connection was opposing the king. While far from having all in favor of a republic, the most prominent groups wanted some type of democratic system rather than an autocratic state.

“The Discrets can claim they are the state all they want: the people won’t stand for it.”- Aquiliean Republican in ‘La Vérité du Peuple’ (The Peoples Truth), popular underground newspaper prior to the revolution

This coalition had been preparing for revolution for years and had supplies and funding for one, but lacked the support of the people. Not only was their recruitment limited due to being forced underground, but their ideas were not looked upon favorably by the complacent and simple-ambitioned. The strife not only allowed them to openly recruit in the secluded parts of the nation but to spread their propaganda so well and so efficiently that almost every literate grif had read the writings which called for a free Aquilean people. Internal conflict rocked the group constantly as class and political divides threatened to fraction the steadily growing coalition and ruin all their hard work. Several strong leader heads managed to keep them together, including Theodore Verany, Victor Allad and Cecile Gaudreau who each spoke for several factions within the group.

Finally, full on revolution came when in the dead of the night when numerous supporters of the cause were taken from their beds by the police and soldiers who tortured the supporters to gain not only confessions but names of others. In the morning, the battered and bloody griffions and ponies were dragged into the middle of Vangees and left there. The city, full of almost militant loyalist, beat them to death and are said to have even crucified or decapitated their bodies. Seeing how very soon their efforts could be undone by similar acts, the Council of The People or the preselected temporary governors of the nation and leader figures among the Friends to The Republic cause called for revolution.

The militias and their commanders had eagerly awaited this and followed through thoroughly stunningly quickly and efficiently with their plans: Loyalist forces were surrounded and neutralized, armories were seized, major industry taken, military commanders and nobles arrested or otherwise dealt with. Soon, the kings military held power only the capital, Vangees and pockets of the countryside, where almost anyone who could fight was drafted and given a rifle to fight the encroaching Republicans. But within 3 months, the King and his family followed dozens of other nobles and fled the country to the home of a family member in Wingbardy, swearing to get his crown back with no money, no army, and no outside support.

When their king having abandoned them, the military stood down along with the poor griffion who’d been left in governance of the country. Victory was declared by the Council who quickly took up their place in an indoor tennis court not far from the palace as their temporary chambers, ordering not only the creation of a new council chamber but the establishment of a new national holiday to celebrate their victory. After a meeting of every member of the Friends of The Republic, and a representative from every town, city, and village in the country, minus Vangees who refused, it was decided a constitutional republic was the direction to go with the Councils most powerful member and commander in chief Theodore Verany as its first president. Even once loyalist celebrated their new found freedom when the nation's constitution was signed.

“Had I known what I was truly fighting for, I might have just turned my rifle around.”- Ex Loyalist officer after the declaration of the new republic's constitution, which guaranteed the right to vote for all citizens, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and a right to bear arms among other rights.

But not all was fine within the country, as with its overthrow of the nobility came the loss of the money and jobs they provided. Almost a quarter of the country's GDP reportedly took flight across the world where they were accepted by other nobility. Already ongoing hunger grew worse when peasants once tied to their land by debt to landowning nobles flocked to the city for a perceived better quality of life and better-paying jobs, leaving many farms empty and fields to rot. On top of this, the coalition was splintering, the radicals and above all the radical socialist, feeling the new reforms and rights did not go far enough. The country soon found itself also plagued by internal woes from those still loyal to the Discrets who fought the country's new government, often using the same tactics the revolutionaries had to build up strength to the point many were worried they may attempt to raise up.

"ça ira."(It’ll be ok)- Aquilliean economic minister when asked about the country's potential economic collapse following the revolution that became a popular revolutionary phrase

Finding himself leading a now desolate country that was starving, broke and filled with enemies, the president was forced to form various new temporary committees in an effort to fix the situation quickly. Along with arguably breaking the constitution that he had just signed his name to. By suspending the right to protest, having numerous radicals exiled or forced to leave the Council, disallowing travel between villages for ‘safety’ concerns, issuing martial law across loyalist areas and increasing the power of the military and police, he in some minds was no different then the tyrant he helped overthrow. The worst of all these acts might be the creation of The Committee of Public Safety, which was given incredible powers to rid the government and country of loyalists which led to the bloody execution of not only many of those who had been on Council but were considered threats due to their wealth or high birth, but even peasants did not escape the guillotine which became favored for its marketed merciful death. It's well documented that many crimes which in no way were Anti-Revolutionary were punished as such and minor crimes were death sentences once judges were ordered to no longer issue prison sentences for the accused no matter the crime.

The most tragic event to come of this committee is the “Week of Terror” that happened in the city of Vangees, where the massacre to finally spark the revolution happened, when not only did the committee begin to execute griffions as fast as it could, but the army sacked the town in a revenge for the ‘Republic Massacre’ as it had been named. In the end, nearly 15 percent of the cities population was killed and nearly half of it destroyed. Appalled by the reports from Vangees and other cities, the president decided to disband the committee and jail the head of it. The loyalism that they had attempted to root out only grew stronger and perhaps turned many people against the government as just more tyrants by different names.

Despite all of these setbacks, the decisive actions taken by the president allowed the nation to recover and soon, many of these were reversed or not given priority. Yet, they left one crucial part of the Republic weak; it’s newly reformed army which had many of its officers stripped of rank, arrested or killed as suspected traitors, leaving the officers corp in shambles and the bulk of forces lacked equipment due to damaged industry. So, not even 4 years later, the King and his best commanders launched a successful counter-coup from Vangees which had always held out as a loyalist stronghold. The counter-coup was as short and bloody as the revolution and led to far more death as the King, once firmly back in power, went about killing anyone that had breathed Republicansm who hadn’t already fled and officially exiled on pain of death any who had. This Reign of Terror was far worse than even the worst killings after the revolution and the only area spared was the ‘vanguard’ of the king Vangees who current name Vanguardio comes from this constant stubbornness. Like that, the light of revolution should have died out and been finished… But embers remain.

The griffions of Aquiliea seem to refuse to accept their once deposed king and it appears the revolutionary spirit seems to live on despite the many attempts by the king and his family across the kingdom to finally kill it. Many see another uprising as almost inevitable should extreme measures not be taken and ask when it will take place, rather than if. While I am not to express my personal opinions here, one might be able to look upon the people of this even more inept ruler than most on the continent with a sympathetic glance as they fight to regain the Republic that for even a short moment, they held so close and dear.

“Our first mistake was not beheading that rotten egg born bastard!”- Exiled Republican on why the Republic fell

“I will sooner burn this kingdom down than allow it into the claws of those who think themselves above their lowly station and I should have you shot for such a question.”- King Morisect on a possible second revolution

“Inbred, inept and in trouble. What’s new on the continent?”- Skyfallian trader after leaving Aquiliea during the Revolution after the exile of the Discrets

‘The Knightly Orders of Bloody Claws’

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*Disclaimer: The next entry is difficult to write due to the sensitive and quite frankly gruesome reports that come from the area being discussed and out of respect for the victims and their families, many details have been cut out or toned down heavily. Our hearts rest heavy and our thoughts go out for the ponies who suffer daily acts them and their people.

The Knightly Order of Longsword and the Knightly Order of Hellquill have been written together due to how similar they are as many actions that happen in one are similar to the other. They have similar histories as Knightly Orders set up as frontier protection against the eastern riverponies. Although both did not renew their oaths of loyalty to the Empire once it fractured, they continued their constant defense against the riverponies. This constant conflict and war with the ponies of east largely lead to the noteworthy things of these two minor nations: The Reformisten and The Longswordian Bloodbath both of which have similar goals and methods.

In essence, the Reformisten is a group of knights who idea is to bring racial purity to the orders by systematically deporting and killing the pony minorities who live within their borders achieve a stronger state by conquest and create more ‘living space’ for the griffion race at the expense of pony lives. The Longswordian Bloodbath is the ideas of the Reformisten in action.

Hellquill is currently quite oppressive to the ponies who call it home but stops at outright murder and destruction of them with its current policy be to push them out by increased immigration of more griffions upon their land. However, with its current headmaster is set to soon retire. the Reformisten will find its chance to seed its dark ideas into the order, becoming a bulwark from long ago pony raids with a distaste for their ancient enemies into something willing to kill its people for ideas of purity and living space. One can only hope that reform might come to this land or, at the very least, it keeps on with its current policy and gives the poor ponies there a chance to move elsewhere for a chance at a better, unoppressive life.

“While River Coalition might squabble at times, it would nevertheless take any poor pony from Hellquill all with open hooves.”- River Swirl, leader of River Republic, when asked after the situation in Hellquill

While the ponies with Hellquill have a chance to leave before the Reformisten might take hold, those in Longsword have been made a target by the leader, the incompetent Count Pallas Dusktalon, to be killed, imprisoned, deported and driven away. The levels of filth, poverty, and repression the ponies of Longsword face are abhorrent, and the events that take place indescribable and beyond comprehension. They are not considered citizens and hold none of the meager rights griffions do, interracial mixing is punished by death, their businesses and homes are confiscated and given to loyal Refromisten party members as ponies are forced into ghettos where they are starved, beaten, imprisoned and routinely sent to work or death camps. It is said being pony in Longsword is like being born in a pit where you likely to never see the light of day… yet hope remains.

Dusktalon does not go unopposed as pony partisans oppose him at any chance, killing his supporters, freeing prisoners and spreading aid whenever possible to those who need it, while thankfully having many sympathetic griffions and foreign volunteers to bolster its ranks even if it rumored to reek of communism and collectivism. Even a faction among the military opposed the countless directly, believing his policies too far or his rule bad for even the griffions of Longsword and they often ignore or even change his orders to be less impactful. Of course, there is much to be said of the country but given how intertwined the genocide is in its current history, we have refrained from giving further attention to these tragic events. But in a final word, the Count's grasp on power grows thinner and thinner every day and a fracturing of the country seems impossible to stop.

“I’ve covered wars, famines, poverty-stricken countries, and disasters… and nothing could have prepared me for Longsword.”- Feathersian reporter on the Longswordian Bloodbath

“The Longswordian Genocide is a disgrace to griffion kind and gives into the savagery often depicted by the other races. It is so disturbing it has not been more roundly condemned and dare I say it would make Maar himself gleeful!”- Opinion piece published in Yales ‘Griffionian Intellectual’, highly respected paper

“Hellquil need only look south and see just what these Reformisten monsters do!”- Hellquillian reformer