The Emmerian Chronicle
February 5, 2014
Civil War Recurrence?
Around 9 in the morning of the 4th, a temporary storage site for reconstruction assistance supplies in Bistok, western Estovakia, was raided by insurgents formerly associated with the Lyes Faction. Eight Emmerian soldiers were killed in this attack. 27 civilians including NGO staff were among the dead and injured, and relief supplies of food and pharmaceuticals for 50,000 people were stolen.
The temporary storage site attacked in Bistok stores food and relief supplies for half a million people, and has become a major relay point throughout western Estovakia. Therefore, strict security measures had been put in place by the Emmerian military’s reconstruction assistance force, and was scheduled to be reinforced soon. Attacks on transport trucks had occurred sporadically in the vicinity of Bistok, but this was the first raid targeting a supply base. It is likely to affect future supply activities.
Within Estovakia, ex-Lyes Faction insurgents have become more active since the attack on Foreign Minister Isaac Arensky in November, stoking fears that conflict between the old Generals will rekindle.
“Emmeria’s aid measures have plunged Estovakia into chaos”
At the Conference on Reconstruction Assistance to Estovakia, held on the same day as the gunfight in Bistok, Special Envoy Bell, Emmeria’s Special Envoy for Reconstruction, announced that reconstruction assistance to Estovakia that had been suspended since 2011 would resume as planned. This aid will focus on supporting administrative expenses, with emphasis placed on rebuilding infrastructure, which is a major consideration from the viewpoint of Emmeria’s national security. The specific details will be fine-tuned starting on the 8th of this month.
In response to this additional aid, Special Envoy Bell said, “Reconstruction from the Estovakian Civil War is a global imperative. Our nation will spare no effort in the global recovery from the disasters caused by Ulysses and establishing lasting world peace,” demonstrating his desire for Estovakian revival. On the other hand, apprehension about the military dictatorship has been pointed out, and some believe that this aid will lead to a repeat of the mistakes of the Lyes United Front (LUF).
The new Foreign Minister Antonina Kozniku (formerly a Captain in the Eastern Faction’s navy) spoke of the Emmerian government’s “haphazard assistance” to the LUF as a contributing factor to the outbreak of the Estovakian Civil War. Special Envoy Bell stated that aid to the LUF was carried out with the early stages of Estovakia’s reconstruction in mind, and did not represent an endorsement of the LUF’s militaristic oppression; he also rebutted, “Is Estovakia not turning its internal discontent towards Emmeria, despite being in a position to receive reconstruction assistance?”
Previously, these criticisms never came to the surface, but the cabinet minister’s official statement blaming Emmeria will likely cast a shadow on future relations with Estovakia.
Emmeria’s Reconstruction Support Activities So Far
It has been 14 years since the Emmerian government started the Ulysses Reconstruction Assistance Policy. Reconstruction assistance for Estovakia started in 2000 with the cooperation of NGOs, intended to progress step by step until Estovakia could recover from its own reconstruction efforts. However, when the regional dominance of armed factions later known as the Generals came into full swing, the central government lost influence and the Generals became a major impediment to reconstruction assistance activities. Along with chronic delays to restoring infrastructure and supply shortages, Estovakia faced rampant disputes and looting between the Generals, making the Assistance Policy impossible to implement and leading to its temporary freeze. (The Anean Republic Preparatory Organization was formed in 2004 to pursue the “Anean Republic Vision,” uniting Emmeria, Estovakia, and Nordennavic into a singular nation; it was frozen in 2008 due to Estovakia’s worsening state of affairs.)
In April 2007, the Lyes United Front (LUF) supplanted the old administration and took control of the former capital city in Western Estovakia, declaring itself the “legitimate government.” Seeking to carry on with its frozen reconstruction efforts, the Emmerian government switched to supporting the reconstruction policy being implemented by the LUF. However, the LUF used this reconstruction assistance to suppress opposing forces. Notably, the city of Gražina refused to accept the Lyes Faction’s rule, leading to their lifeline being cut off and having the distribution of goods stopped, causing the death of 200,000 citizens.
This oppression was the impetus for Eastern Faction’s backlash against the LUF, prompting the other Generals to revolt one by one and plunging them into a civil war for six years. The Emmerian government halted aid to the LUF in 2010, but this "haphazard" reconstruction assistance left animosity between them and the former Eastern Faction forces that form the core of the reigning Estovakian government. In fact, the reconstruction support measures announced on the 4th are said to, in some aspect, include “compensatory damages” for Estovakia.
Currently, Estovakia faces problems including delays in rebuilding infrastructure, a high unemployment rate in excess of 40 percent, and the existence of armed groups that claim independence from the country. Analysis from the Amherst Research Institute, a prominent Emmerian think tank, states that unless a worldwide effort is made to implement reconstruction assistance for Estovakia, it will be no less than 30 years before the Estovakian economy recovers to the state it was in during 90s. From now on, it is essential that Estovakia’s early recovery is supported by the whole world, and not just Emmeria.
Former Foreign Minister Isaac Arensky Dies.
Estovakian authorities confirmed in an official statement that former Foreign Minister Isaak Arensky, who had fallen unconscious and been in critical condition after the attack on him last November, died on December 2nd.
Mr. Arensky was attacked by a heavily armed group while traveling in his vehicle to Zaulek International Airport for a visit to Emmeria. He was engulfed in a hand grenade’s explosion and seriously injured while attempting to flee his car. Two culprits escaped, while three were shot to death at the scene by his escort troops. At that time, some reports suggested that Mr. Arensky had a poor relationship with Prime Minister Jakov Šuker and other Ministers formerly associated with the Eastern Faction over foreign policy, and although speculation has ran rampant about the criminals’ identities, Estovakian authorities have concluded that the crime was committed by ex-Lyes Faction soldiers who claimed independence from Estovakia. Within the week following the incident, the authorities had apprehended fifteen perpetrators including some who were attempting to flee.
They emphasized the announcement of Mr. Arensky's death was withheld in respect of his wishes of "(announcing) after a successor has been chosen, and the path to reconstruction assistance has been established".
Mr. Arensky was well known not only in Estovakia but also in Emmeria as a former Lieutenant General in the Northern Highlands Faction’s air force as well as a key player in the establishment of a new regime. He served as the new regime’s first Foreign Minister, and shortly after the end of the Civil War he enthusiastically turned to foreign countries for Estovakian reconstruction. On the day of the incident, he was scheduled to fly to Gracemeria to represent Estovakia in the Conference on Reconstruction Assistance sponsored by Emmeria.
Colonel General Dvornik, Supreme Commander of the Estovakian military (and formerly the Eastern Faction), was his close ally, and it’s said that the merger of the Northern Highlands Faction and Eastern Faction during the Civil War was established as a result of their relationship. Colonel General Dvornik made an unusual statement to the press corps on the same day that his friend’s passing was announced.
“This era of fighting amongst each other must end with his death. We shall inherit his will, and retake Estovakia’s pride with our own two hands.”