A Perspective on the Fo1 and Government of Hentz

jedion357's picture
jedion357
March 31, 2017 - 7:49am
Rereading "Red Storm Rising" because I loved that book back in the day and because I picked up a hard bound copy for $1.50 @ Goodwill.

In it an analyst points out that in Russian media they will criticize specific individuals and never generalize. In the examples it was military men not obeying orders. So that they would never talk about privates in the army not obeying their Sgts. as that could be construed as a criticism of Soviet society which is perfect of course. Rather they will name the 11 privates and criticize them for their specific "sin".

I immediately saw a parallel to Fo1 and the government of Hentz. A very tightly controlled society where everyone must wear a uniform denoting their job and social position.

It might be good to think of Fo1 and Hentz as the Soviet Union.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!
Comments:

jedion357's picture
jedion357
March 31, 2017 - 8:00am
And another thought:

Setting says that no non-yazirian can set foot on Hentz. which is problematic in that the average party of PCs could never visit Hentz. To me this is an either silly or stupid detail in the setting. I have always wanted to open up the defacto new yazirian home world in the Frontier for exploration.

So two ideas:

1. taking a page from the Chinese: what if there is a Forbidden City but in reverse? could even be a poster map of Port Loren size where aliens (dralasites, vrusk and humans) can visit Hentz. I even like the name for this "The Forbidden City"

2. the stricture is that no alien can set foot on the sacred soil of Hentz. Thus the Forbidden City is actually raised up on a foundation or pillars. and certain sites outside the city have been openned for alien tourism or diplomatic contact via air transport to special landing pads and the alien are not allowed to leave that building on pain of imprisonment and explussion form the planet.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

JCab747's picture
JCab747
March 31, 2017 - 8:34am
Ah, what if the F01 imported soil from another planet or ritually descreated a section of the planet so it is no longer considered "the sacred soil of Hentz." That way, they could have zones for "vistors" or the "barbarians" to land and trade and even reside -- on a "temporary" basis of course. No non-yazarian is going to ever be made a citizen of Hentz... although, what if someone is adopted by a clan? Hmm, complications.  
Joe Cabadas

jedion357's picture
jedion357
March 31, 2017 - 9:18am
JCab747 wrote:
Ah, what if the F01 imported soil from another planet or ritually descreated a section of the planet so it is no longer considered "the sacred soil of Hentz." That way, they could have zones for "vistors" or the "barbarians" to land and trade and even reside -- on a "temporary" basis of course. No non-yazarian is going to ever be made a citizen of Hentz... although, what if someone is adopted by a clan? Hmm, complications.  


with a special foundation for the alien quarter they would have to import soil for gardens but to prevent the wind from blowing dust and contaminating the rest of Hentz Fo1 would require domes over said gardens.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

ExileInParadise's picture
ExileInParadise
March 31, 2017 - 11:20am
Okay this confuses me a bit - where does it say only Yazirians can set foot on Hentz?
The only reference I am aware of is the Alpha Dawn Expanded Rules which say that its ruled by Family of One and everyone loves them some jumpsuits showing station.
Where did I miss the planetary ban?

If there is such a thing, the most expendient way to implement it is with an orbital port where all non-Yaz are allowed to go, and no further.
The Class II SCC at Hentz and Fortified Station Hentz would be options.
The rest is that the Family of One controls the planetary defense batteries and uses them to enforce its Yaz-only ban for surface landings - SFKH campaign book p51 has all you need to make that sort of landing ban stick.

Visiting the Hentz stations would be much like when Americans visited Soviet Russia in the 1960s - the facilities for visitors were bad, bugged and monitored heavily, and visitors were always "escorted" - products were heavily segregated and always for political (or in this case religious) purpose. Robert Heinlein's article "Pravda Means Truth" would be a good read for a view of what visitors would expect, especially the bits about Intourist:
http://www.unz.org/Pub/AmMercury-1960oct-00051

jedion357's picture
jedion357
April 2, 2017 - 7:01am
At Exileinparadise: great question, I was sure I read it in cannon material and after having skimmed AD, KHs, Zebs, the Dragon, Aries & Polyhedron archives I'm now in doubt. 

I remember that what I read specified one of Hentz's stations was called Hullheal station and this was where non yazirians were limited too. Have to comb the planet briefs in SFmsn to see if that's where I got it.

EDIT: Really thought that was from a cannon source. I sometimes can't even keep track of everything I've written for the 3 magazines that have published my work. Last summer I counted up 130 articles.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

JCab747's picture
JCab747
April 2, 2017 - 8:40am
I still like the idea of F01 banning non-Yazarians from Henz' sacred soil, whether it was TSR inspired or fandom inspired
Joe Cabadas

iggy's picture
iggy
April 2, 2017 - 11:32am
I do too.  However I'm in the mood to want bureaucratic convoluted laws about who can go where among non-yazirians.   Stuff stemming from all the exceptions that have to be made for dignitaries,  visiting politicians, high level business leaders,  scientific prodigies,  military leaders, etc.  I  would expect they would invent ceremonial cleansings, compromised zones, escorts, robes of covering and more to rationalize and explain to the most fervent believers the exceptions. 
-iggy

JCab747's picture
JCab747
April 2, 2017 - 11:40am
iggy wrote:
I do too.  However I'm in the mood to want bureaucratic convoluted laws about who can go where among non-yazirians.   Stuff stemming from all the exceptions that have to be made for dignitaries,  visiting politicians, high level business leaders,  scientific prodigies,  military leaders, etc.  I  would expect they would invent ceremonial cleansings, compromised zones, escorts, robes of covering and more to rationalize and explain to the most fervent believers the exceptions. 

Hey, the visitors might be required to travel in hover vehicles, so they don't touch the ground -- even if it is a vehicle -- while traveling from one area to another. Or need to walk on elevated platforms.

There's a lot you could do with those ideas.

I imagine the Pan-Galactic Corporation was probably the first to break through the F01's resistence. Probablyl with some well-placed negotiating (i.e. bribes, kickbacks, etc.) to integrate the warrior Yazarians in with the other three major races.
Joe Cabadas

jedion357's picture
jedion357
April 3, 2017 - 3:29am
Hover chairs, jet boots, lots of compromise.

the irony is that its not the sacred soil of Yazira, that planet was lost (fan cannon) and Fo1 considers Hentz the New Yazira. Which for the upper eschelons of Fo1 is really just a method of control asserted with simulated religious fervor.

Hentz has been terraformed with extinction of prior biosphere elements.

Oh and I like iggy's ideas

Oh and to borrow an idea from 1st century Jewish priest: you cant just take any hoverchair into the holy precincts, you have to have a ritually cleaned hoverchair which is provided by the Fo1 for what the Fo1 calls a nominal fee but is clearly gouging the customer.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

Tollon's picture
Tollon
April 3, 2017 - 8:10pm
Perhaps the city are on stilts and the majority of the population never touches the ground?

The priesthood is made up the farmers?  These argrain preist could exsert and aweful lot of pressure on the general population. It could be why their religion is still followed into the modern era???

If they brought a large ammout of soil with them inside their colonization ship, there could be a sacred garden inside a dome or building that no one but the preists can enter.  Another way the planet soil could have become sacred is by winds blowing it about or spread about by the population.

 Maybe the soil isn't soil but a rapid growing plant that acts as ground cover, that has spread through out the world???

jedion357's picture
jedion357
April 4, 2017 - 4:14am
I think the yazirians like humans going into post industrial phases of society had shed much of their religiousness that a siginificant number of post modern yazirians were non religious. Religions on Yazira were adapting to changing times, changing social dynamics, changing economics all have an impact.

Into this fray comes a world shaking event: the near pass of a wandering Brown Dwarf star with predictions of the end of the world. What will it take to save the yazrian species, a species that is notorious for their clannishness and aggressive hostility?

The task is monumental. It includes sending interestellar scouts to locate a suitable planetary realestate and have them report back. Preserving the essence of their society, perserving the biological diversity of their planet, and building the shear awesome space lift to execute a space exodus.

The name Family of One is suggestive. I believe that it started small as a philosophy (not a religion) long before the threat of the Brown dwarf. something that was preached to bring yazirians together and act as a brake on inter clan conflict.

Under the threat of destruction a central authority would need to marshal the gross domestic output of a world to under take the star exodus and the very nature of millenia of yazirian society being clan based would work against this. So a philosophy like this would be an ideal propaganda push to get everyone moving in the right direction. The philosophy that have never been very big is suddenly co-opted by the central authority and pushed through government programs and media. The whole race ends up declaring a sort of life enemy against their own apocalypse. As the movement picks up steam the idea of all yazirians being one family, which is logical from an evolutionary perspective, begins to take on the power of religious belief in hearts and minds. The central authority celebrates the accomplishments of the race toward their goal of salvation: building a gene ark, building colonization ships, fleets, fore runner fleets that will prepare the new home world for the bulk of the colonist, returning scouts. But its still not a religion, just a powerful philosophy that is believed religiously.

The Yazirian species is in the process of overcoming their Species Life Enemy. They have located an new Garden of Yazira named Hentz circling a star called Araks. A fore runner fleet has been dispatched to begin the process of terraforming and the work of building massive ships to rescue the population of a whole world continues. Not all yazirians will leave Yazira. Some will choose to remain. The very aged will choose to remain or be chosen to remain, or propaganda will manipulate them to choose to remain and so on. The point is that it might be too much to ask that they could space lift a poplation of billions so there will be the trajedy of those left behind.

Now the fore runner fleet enters the Frontier and they discover that they are not the pinnacle of creation, the family of one, the spirit and essence of Yazira by encountering the humans, dralasites and vrusk. The will be a reaction what is it? Not a great leap to think that the natural clannish impulse might kick in but from a perspective of a species not centered on a clan. The leaders of the Fore Runner expedition must have a response. They are transplanting their whole species to a sector with multiple colonies of three different space faring species with a budding interstellar economy who could be a potential threat to the yazirian species.

Using the philosophy as a means of control has become habitual at this point and the huddled masses of yazirian society have become accustomed to functioning as a group toward group goals for the good of the group or family. Its these leaders of the Fore Runner/terraforming expedition that formalize a religion. They do it in the best interest of their species even they the enthrone their position at the top. They may have scouting data on one or two other systems: Hargut maybe. So they change their colony plan to establish the yazirian species as a power in the sector by colonizing not one planet but four. Their terraforming assets were never intended for that so Hentz gets the full sweep and the other three are the red headed step children on the terra forming front.

Because Hentz is the one world most recreated in the image of Yazira that was lost it becomes a pilgrimage site and begins to take on religious importance. Clan Anglan, which runs the Family of One and by extension dominates the megacorp GODco, have become a clan of "priest"  but they started out as scientist/terraforming engineers and the leaders of a interplanetary expedition. They have some years in power in the Frontier and divert colony ships that arrive in Araks to Athor, Hargut, and Scree Fron. Even diverting large numbers of clanless to the new interspecies colony on Gran Quivera.

They have assigned a position of power to themselves and have been enjoying it. So when the central authority on Yazira boards the last ship to depart the homeworld they realize their position is precarious. They stepped into the power vacuum in the Frontier but suddenly their will be another authority present in the Frontier that may not be amenable to sharing power with the Family of One. And since that rival authority had a hand in spreading the philosophy of the oneness of all yazirians it might have something to say about the codification of that propaganda tool into a religion. Leadership of the Fo1 will need the central authority from Yazira to not arrive in the Frontier and they will make the proper steps to ensure that.

Thus you get the modern Frontier: Hentz ruled by Fo1 and society tightly controlled in a very un-yazirian way: everyone wears a uniform denoting job and position in society? thats a mechanism of control instituted from the top down.

Other Yazirian colonies manage to establish their own council of clans and while they may not rock the boat too much with the Fo1 they haven't quite drunk their coolaid. They remain independent. Family of One belief does has influence on those colonies as they whole species bought into the philosophy and accomplished a massive undertaking. yazirians are proud of their species, justly so but that pride is also mixed with pride in the spirit of yazira.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

JCab747's picture
JCab747
April 4, 2017 - 7:25am
This is a good history so far.

My added thought would be that, since the Yazarians are the "Johnny Come Latelies" to the Frontier, when compared to the Humans, Vrusk and Dralasites, their fore runner fleet might have encountered some tiny human settlements on some of the worlds that were destined to become part of the Yazarian Arm.

Imagine a human wild cat strip mining operation on the sacred Hentz. It would be obliterated as part of the cleansing to make it the new Yazria. Hidden away in various places are relics of these former colonies or rarely talked about artifacts.

Think of clan Surkia on Hargut "known for their necklaces composed of teeth removed from their slain enemies" ("Yazarian Clans," by Shadow Shack, Star Frontiersman, issue ??). Some antique collector could come across an old Surkia necklace with human teeth and a few other trinkets, say some old dog tags, that refer to a Human colony world that no longer exists.

When the Yazarians arrived, the other "Core Three" were still working out a lot of their differences, with the center of power at Triad (taking your line of thinking from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Frontier project). Even if a small human colony world was wiped out as the Yazarians came in, there were probably quite a few appeazers who wouldn't want open war with a warrior species.

And, of course, the PGC sees trade and commerce opportunities to "help" the multitudes of refugees coming into the Frontier. Any lost "wild cat" colonies and any potential survivors would simply be forsaken for the common good of peace, much like how many American workers who went to the Soviet Union in the late 1920s and early 1930s were forsaken by the U.S. government during the Stalinist purges of the late 1930s for the sake of good international relations.


Joe Cabadas

jedion357's picture
jedion357
April 4, 2017 - 4:55pm
I like the Wild cat colony idea. Interesting bit of "lost" knowledge

could be a plot hook
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

Tchklinxa's picture
Tchklinxa
April 24, 2017 - 7:20pm
Saudi Arabia.... you can only visit Mecca if Muslim, you can visit Saudi Arabia but can only live live there if Muslim or in specified zones for alliance reasons or work reasons important to the country if you are not Muslim.  Basically very controlled is what I understand from friends. Sounds surprisingly like Hentz. 

So a diplomatic business zones probably do exist, probably very restricted movement...

 thinking of another friend who had a job to do in Mexico, that government had her under armed full military guard, she was never without escort of military and special assigned civilians, who insisted on a change in her clothing and were also stationed near her 24 hours... kid you not. Her job was to bring Mexico into the cable satellite age and Mexico did not want her kidnapped.

Some ideas to consider Some Yazarians might not be welcome or even be put to death if they set foot on Hentz for say breaking some Fo1 rules.

Visitors might have to wear special uniforms. Even Yazi visitors. There would be no free travel of visitors.... zones maybe but very controlled as to who can go where.



"Zoinks!"

jedion357's picture
jedion357
April 25, 2017 - 7:39am
I like the idea of closely monitoring visitors- likely a division of the Inquisitors. I see Hentz's having a resistance and underground heretical movement that the government wants to clamp down on and prevent contact with outsiders. 

The heretical views would be that the Garden of Yazira was lost, Hentz's will never truly be Yazira, and the complete destruction of other ecosystems is as great a tragedy as the destruction of Yazira. 
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

rattraveller's picture
rattraveller
April 26, 2017 - 12:27pm
Try looking up on what visiting North Korea is like. Especially what you can be arrested for.
Sounds like a great job but where did you say we had to go?