|Xi'an-Human Cold War|
|Type||Interspecies Cold War|
|Dates||2530 (aggravation after 2546) -
2789-05-29 (officially 2793-07-05)
|Participants||United Empire of Earth
|Leaders||Messer dynasty (United Empire of Earth)
Erin Toi (United Empire of Earth)
Emperor Kray (Xi'an Empire)
|Result||De-escalation and establishment of cordial relations
The Xi'an-Human Cold War was a period of elevated tensions between the UEE and the Xi'an Empire. Although neither side declared open war, there were many casualties on both sides from covert operations, sabotage, and espionage. The Cold War lasted for more than 250 years, spanning the Messer Era.
First Contact (2530)
Gaia Planet Services attempted to terraform a planet without authorization, but the planet wasn't uninhabited. A new race, later discovered to be the Xi'an, showed up while the terraformers were building the equipment. Needless to say, they were a little perturbed. The Xi'an captured the entire crew of 276 and kept them under guard. They released one, the foreman Charles Baxter, as a gesture of good faith.
Back on Earth, High-Secretary Cho, High-General Volder, and High-Advocate Machado along with a select sub-committee of Senators gathered to get a clear assessment of what happened from Baxter and what to do about the Xi'an.
"We were surveying, looking for plant-points to set up the equipment. There were three transports scheduled to land so we were expecting to hear ships. I was up on a ridge when the first one came into view. I knew immediately it wasn't ours. Human, I mean. It didn't look like any Banu ship I'd ever seen, but you know how they are… next thing we knew, they were all over us. Ships coming from all sorts of directions."
Charles Baxter, 2530
UPE Military forces maintained a perimeter at the jump-point entrance. It took fifteen days to work out a communication system to speak with the Xi'an. That started a tense negotiation period. The Xi'an were meticulous with their demands.
Terrorist Attacks across the UPE (2546)
Numerous attacks including a high-profile bombing in Jata shook the UPE in 2546. The Advocacy never caught the perpetrators. They only knew that the bombs had been made in part from Xi'an technology. Ivar Messer and his successors exploited this knowledge to invoke a fear of the Xi'an that would grow over time. Some even believe that Messer was behind the attacks.
The Perry Line
"I don't want another war. Too many sons and daughters, husbands and wives, have already been lost in the deep vacuum and barren planets. But I will say this, I would ring every system and every jump-point with shields and wire a thousand kilometers thick if it meant we wouldn't have to lose any more"
High-General Ivar Messer
To many, the Perry Line was known as the interstellar barrier between Humanity and the Xi'an. Tactlessly named by Humanity after old deities of war, these eight systems never had a chance to be anything but a no man's land. The Perry Line represented an even greater wall of distrust, separating our two great cultures from engaging in meaningful diplomacy.
In 2542 Marie Sante discovered the jump from Horus to the Rihlah System. This made Horus a security risk for the UPE. The government closed the system to non-military personnel, receiving little resistance from the small group of civilians that had begun to settle on the fledgling planet of Serling.
The Human Front
In 2544, a system was discovered by UPE military pathfinders probing the Perry Line for undiscovered jump points. The military brass immediately grasped its strategic importance as a staging post for the brewing Xi'an conflict. The system was named Castra, after the ancient Roman term for land used by the military as a defensive position, and terraforming of its second planet began immediately.
Decades later, when a jump point from Castra into Xi'an territory was discovered, the system was thrust into the front lines of the conflict. As government funding flooded the system to improve its defensive fortifications and military infrastructure, it quickly changed from a mere staging post into a focal point of the Xi'an cold war. A large orbital platform was even built to support capital ships and long-range bombers, which were ever ready to attack Xi'an space should the order be given.
The Xi'an Front
With the rise of the Human threat, Rihlah was converted into a major staging area for Xi'an military forces, and the system's two worlds were initially terraformed with only this purpose in mind. Massive barracks facilities, training yards and munitions plants initially populated the system. If the Xi'an Empire had ever gone into all-out war with Earth, Rihlah would have been a key strategic launch point.
Kayfa System Incursion (2617)
UEEN Lieutenants Ahmad Harar and Carl Dyson discover a gravitational anomaly while patrolling the Horus System. Without a word to anyone, they enter the jump point and become the first Humans to visit the Kayfa System. Unbeknownst to Harar and Dyson, their arrival in Kayfa triggers long range sensors that mobilize a nearby Xi'an squadron. Meanwhile, Harar and Dyson's return trip is delayed because Dyson's ship sustained damage from navigating the uncharted jump. While Dyson is running a diagnostic check to see if his ship is still jump-capable, an EMP blast neutralizes both spacecraft. The Xi'an squadron swarms and captures Harar and Dyson. For years, official UEE documents list the two as on "medical leave" during this period.
Ahmad Harar and Carl Dyson claim to have been held on a large Xi'an military vessel where they were interrogated while their ships were studied and stripped of weapons. After three anxious days, the Xi'an began to believe the pilots' story that the rest of the UEE military didn't know about the jump. The two were returned to their ships, escorted to the jump point, and given the message that any further UEE vessels would be attacked on sight.
The Horus Incident
Recently declassified documents show just how close we came to war during what became known as the Horus Incident. Working in conjunction with Aegis, the Navy deployed a prototype AI-piloted Overlord bomber wing along the Xi'an front. Their hearts were in the right place: it was an attempt to bring home pilots that had been stationed along the Perry Line for their entire careers. But when Aegis' billion-credit babies decided that their comms were compromised and shut them off – just in time to miss their recall order – we had to chase down and destroy our own mistake, the death knell for Aegis in the shipbuilding industry. Again, we aren't sure that they would have plunged us into all-out war with the Xi'an by wandering around unsupervised in the neutral zone, but what might they have done?
"The Xi'an conflict, when it does occur — and note I say when, not if — will ultimately be determined by our strength in one system alone, Castra. I implore all of you to appropriate funds swiftly and accordingly"
Admiral Connelly Reeves, excerpt from a speech given to High-Command, 2716
Akari-Kray Peace Accord (2789-05-29)
The bold Terran Senator Terrence Akari defied the Messers and breached the Perry Line to meet a Xi'an delegation on Tohil III led by Emperor Kray himself. Aware of Imperator Linton Messer XI's weakening power base, Akari and Kray spent days hammering out the details of the famous treaty that bears their names.
On May 29, 2789, Senator Akari called for an emergency session of the Senate to present the peace accord and ordered an immediate vote, capitalizing on the Imperator's recreational break in Goss. By the time word of the surprise session reached the Imperator, he was unable to rally his lackeys to block the procedure. The deal was narrowly approved.
Though the Senate's vote was nonbinding without the Imperator's signature, the people of the UEE overwhelmingly supported it, proving the populace was sick and tired of being on the brink of war. The demonization of the Xi'an had been one of the oldest plays in the Messers' book, yet after over two hundred years without an overtly aggressive action against the UEE, few truly believed the Xi'an were the boogeymen the Messers made them out to be.
The Xi'an demonstrate their commitment to the agreement by withdrawing all military forces from Perry Line systems, but Imperator Messer XI still refuses to sign the peace accord. For years after the agreement, UEE military ships still patrolled Perry Line systems more uncertain than ever about what they were doing there.
Three years later, anti-Messer activists who had previously escaped to the Xi'an Empire were smuggled back into the UEE to launch their conspiracy from Bremen.
Imperator Linton Messer XI was overthrown by the general public on 2792-05-03, ending the Messer Regime. Analysts have concluded that it was through Xi'an influence that the revolution and subsequent overthrow of Messer XI was able to succeed.
The Perry Line Pact (2793-07-05)
The diplomatic process was then able to begin, starting with what to do with the Perry Line systems. On 2793-07-05, the Perry Line pact was ratified and signed by both sides, officially bringing to end the cold war and birthing a new diplomatic era between the UEE and the Xi'an Empire, one that has stayed strong through today. The Perry Line systems were split up between the UEE and the Xi'an Empire, becoming what are now known as the Transitional systems.
In a show of good faith, the UEE reduced their military footprint in Castra and, for the first time after two centuries of strict control, permitted the public to move into the system.
For a time recently, the UEE's populace perceived rising tensions between the UEE and Xi'an Empire. A Glasier poll conducted at some point during Kelos Costigan's term as Imperator indicated that over 63% of the UEE believed that military conflict with the Xi'an was a likely possibility within the next six months. However, these perceptions have since been quashed.
- Meet the Xi'an. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- 2530: The Galaxy Gets Bigger. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- 2546: A Leader Rises. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- This Day in History: The Path to Prime Citizen. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- Loremaker's Guide to the Galaxy - Davien System
- This Day in History: The Perry Line Pact. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- Galactic Guide: Castra System. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- Galactic Guide: Rihlah System. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- Galactic Guide: Kayfa System. Transmission - Comm-Link
- News Update: Will We Never Learn?. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- Writers Guide: Part Two. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- Galactic Guide: Castra. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- 2792: The Tide Rises. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link
- News Update: A Day to Look Forward. Spectrum Dispatch - Comm-Link