- This country was formerly a part of Altverse. It is no longer canonical.
Empire of Akitsu
(Yuu, Gi, Jin)
Courage, Rectitude, Benevolence
(Warera no Akitsu)
|Official languages||Japanese, Akitian|
• Proclemation of the Formation of the Empire
|August 30th, 1658|
• Unification of Akitsu
|December 16th, 1899|
• 2014 census
|GDP (PPP)||2014 estimate|
• Per capita
|Currency||Akitian Yin (¥) (允) (AKY)|
|Time zone||UTC+8 (Akitian Standard Time)|
The Empire of Akitsu (Japanese: 秋津帝国), more commonly known as Akitsu (Japanese: 秋津), is an nation located in East Asia. It doesn't border any nation, as it is an island nation, but geographically Japan and Korea is located to it's north and China is located to it's west. The characters that make up Akitsu's name mean "autumn harbor", and subsequently that is why Akitsu is sometimes called the "Harbor of Autumn".
Akitsu is made up of many islands, one of which makes up the vast majority of Akitsu's land area. The largest islands in Akitsu is Akishima, which is also home to Akitsu's capital of Kobara and Akitsu's most populous city Magawa.
Archaeological research has shown that people have lived in Akitsu since the upper paleolithic period. The first written mention of Akitsu appears in Chinese texts aound the 1st century AD, around the same time the first written accounts of Japan appear. Akitian history is characterized periods of influences from other nations, most notably one by Japan that even resulted in Akitsu adopting a dialect of the Japanese language as it's own language. The period between 1410 and 1658 AD, known within Akitsu as the "Eisen Period", is marked by a period of near constant warfare as various warrior clans battled to control Akitsu. In 1658 a stalemate was reached and Akitsu was divided into three kingdoms. In 1899 a powerful nationalist movement, feuled by corruption and human rights abuses in one of the kingdoms, succeeded in unifying Akitsu. Akitsu adopted it's first official constitution in 1905, however this constitution still gave the Emperor considerable powers. The constitution was replaced in 1960 by one that significantly reduced the powers of the Emperor, but allowed him to retain some influence in the government. Both of these constitutions were written by the order of the Emperor himself in response to popular opinion.
- 1 Etymology
- 2 History
- 2.1 Imin Period (移民時代)
- 2.2 Furutsu Period (古津時代)
- 2.3 Kyutetsu Period (旧鉄時代)
- 2.4 Hakkoku Period (八国時代)
- 2.5 Shokukoku Period (蜀国時代)
- 2.6 Nichinari Period (日成時代)
- 2.7 Eda Period (江田時代)
- 2.8 Eisen Period (永戦時代)
- 2.9 Retsukoku Period (裂国時代)
- 2.10 Kindai period (近代)
- 2.11 Kobayakawa Period (小早川時代)
- 2.12 Shinkoku Period (新国時代)
- 3 Politics and Government
- 4 Foreign Relations
- 5 Administrative Divisions
- 6 Economy
- 7 Demographics
- 8 See also
The name "Akitsu" derives from a story regarding the nations founding. According to traditional Akitian mythology, the first Akitian settlers arrived in Akitsu in autumn. Because of this, the people living in Akitsu began referring to the islands as the "Harbor of Autumn", and eventually the characters meaning just that (秋津) were adopted as the nations name. The full title of the nation, the Empire of Akitsu, is Akitsu Teikoku (秋津帝国), meaning "Empire of Akitsu". The Akitian people refer to themselves as Akitsu-jin (秋津人) and to their dialect of Japanese as Akitsu-ben (秋津弁). There is a native Akitian language, called Akitsu-go (秋津語) but most Akitian no longer speak the language. However, significant amounts of Akitian first-language speakers still live in Akitsu's Gusuku region, where they make up the majority of the population.
Imin Period (移民時代)
The first evidence of human habitation of the Akitsu Islands dates back to around 28000 BC, though settlement on the Akitsu Islands are believed to have started earlier. There are two prevailing theories as to the origin of these settkers. The first is called the Japan-origin theory (日本原産論), it holds that the first humans in Akitsu were migrants from Japan. The second is known as the China-origin theory (中国原産論), and it holds that the first humans in Akitsu migrated from China. Though genetic evidence has proven that the people of Akitsu share a common ancestry with both the people of Japan and China, no evidence has been found that determines which group arrived in Akitsu first. This continues to be a subject debate among Akitian scholars and historians to today. However it is known that by 27000 BC at the latest migrants from both Japan and Taiwan lived in Akitsu.
This period of initial settlement of the islands of Akitsu is known as the Imin period (移民時代). It started when settlement of the Akitsu Islands began around 50000-30000 BC and lasted until 23000 BNY. This period is marked by initial settlement of the islands that make up Akitsu and the emergance of ancient Akitian culture. During the Imin period the people of Akitsu generally lived on coastal settlements and obtained their food primarily from fishing. The most common type of homes were huts and pit-houses. Settlers brought with them various animals and vegetables. Smaller settlements have been found in the mountains, though these are less numerous and are thought to have housed small hunter-gatherer tribes.
Furutsu Period (古津時代)
In 23000 BC the Furutsu period (古津時代) of Akitian history began. The Furutsu period lasted from 23000 BC to 1000 BC, and is separated into the early Furutsu period (23000-12000 BC), middle Furutsu period (12000-3000 BC), and late Furutsu period (3000 BC - 1000 BC). The early Furutsu period is marked by the establishment of new settlements in Akitsu deeper inland. It is also marked in a great increase in complexity of the design of huts and pit-houses compared to the settlements of the Imin period. The middle Furutsu period is marked by the widespread emergence of small-scale agriculture and a sharp increase in population.
The late Furutsu period is marked by an increase in contact with foreigners. During the late Furutsu period small numbers of settlers came from foreign nations bringing with them new technologies including wet-rice farming and metallurgy. The origin of these settlers is debated. These settlers eventually mixed with the already existing Akitian people, causing the old Furutsu culture to slowly fade out and modern Akitian ethnicity to emerge. By 100 NY the Furutsu culture had vanished, ending the Furutsu period and beginning the Kyutetsu period.
Kyutetsu Period (旧鉄時代)
The Kyutetsu period (旧鉄時代) lasted from 1000 BC to 500 AD. During this time wet-rice farming and metallurgy became widespread. While during the late Furutsu period these technologies had existed in Akitsu, they weren't in widespread use and were instead limited to a small number of settlements. However with the end of the Furutsu period and the birth of the modern Akitian ethnicity the technologies spread across all of Akitsu. The Kyutetsu period is also marked by the emergence of the first Akitian states out of the tribes and chiefdoms that had previously been scattered around. The Kyutetsu period is also the period during which the Akitian religion established itself. Before the Kyutetsu period, the Akitian religion was largely just a disorganized set of local myths. The birth of the first Akitian states during the Kyutetsu period caused the beliefs to become more uniform during this time. This is also the time that the first reishi appeared, though they had no formal name for themselves during this time and went by a variety of names.
Hakkoku Period (八国時代)
Near the end of the Kyutetsu period various states warred with each other for control over Akitsu. Eventually a status quo was reached and the violence ended. Eight Akitian kingdoms were born, starting what is called the Hakkoku period (八国時代) of Akitian history. The Hakkoku period of Akitian history lasted from 500 AD to 797 AD. This period is divided into two sub-periods, the Reimae period (霊前時代) and the Reimei period (霊命時代).
The Reimae period (500-650 AD) is marked by a continued peace between all six kingdoms of Akitsu. The six kingdoms of Akitsu during this time were Shoku (蜀) and San (賛) in the north, Jaku (寂) and Hou (鳳) in the south, Go (呉) and Sei (清) in the central region, and Zen (禅) on Izumijima, and Gi (魏) on Itsukushima. The Reimae period is marked by the establishment of the idea of the "Mandate of Rei", derived from the Chinese concept of the Mandate of Heaven. The Mandate of Rei holds that nations gain the legitimacy to rule by maintaining an equilibrium with the Rei of the world. The Mandate of Rei was used to legitimize the rule of the six different kingdoms over their own domains until the end of the Reimae period.
In 650 AD, the King Haku (白) of Shoku chose to apply the Mandate of Rei in a wider context, starting the Reimei period (650-797 AD). Instead of using the Mandate of Rei to legitimize his rule over only his domain he extended it to mean that he had the right to rule all of Akitsu. On King Haku's order the Kingdom of Shoku launched an attack against San. San's armies were quickly defeated by Shoku. By 680 AD, all of the north was under the control of the Kingdom of Shoku. Around this time King Toku (徳) of Hou had the same idea and launched a campaign against Jaku and Zen. Zen fell in 685 and Jaku fell in 689, bringing all of the south and Itsukushima under the rule of the Kingdom of Hou. The Kingdoms of Shoku, Go, Hou, and Sei went to war against each other in 700 AD. The war proved to be a long and bloody one, lasting nearly a century. Nonetheless, in 797 AD the Kingdom of Shoku emerged victorious and unified Akitsu for the first time ending the Reimei period.
Shokukoku Period (蜀国時代)
The Shokukoku period (蜀国時代) began after the end of the Reimei period. It lasted from 797 AD to 1190 AD. This was a time of peace for Akitsu, as the Kingdom of Shoku maintained order. The new unified nature of Akitsu allowed for further development of the Akitian religion, and for the during this time in history it finally became a uniform belief system. Reishi became an established occupation and a respected part of Akitian society during this period. This prosperity didn't last forever as near the end of the Shokukoku period there was a series of natural disasters which resulted in a famine, causing the popular support for the Kingdom of Shoku to nosedive.
It was at this time that a Japanese Samurai named Hatakeyama Hidemori arrived in Akitsu. Hidemori was born in Aki Province, modern day Hiroshima, and eventually came to serve the Taira clan. However, at the Battle of Dan-no-ura he was defeated. Rather than follow the rest of the forces in retreat, Hidemori escaped to the open ocean with his forces. He and his forces spend many months at sea. A little while after they had run out of food, but then he arrived at Harajima by pure coincidence. Knowing that he had no chance of survival if he didn't get any supplies Hidemori and his forces conquered a small village in order to obtain a source of food, water, and other supplies, as well as establish a base-of-operations in the region.
The Kingdom of Shoku ignored this first attack, believing it to be nothing more than false rumors. Hidemori used this as a chance to let his forces prepare for battle, expecting an attack to come from Shoku at any moment. After being ignored for a while Hidemori conquered several nearby villages and began attempting to recruit the locals. At first he wasn't able to convince many people due to a language barrier, but after finding out that Classical Chinese was a common literary language he managed to organize a set of interpreters. Then Hidemori started drawing in many recruits by claiming that the Kingdom of Shoku had lost the Mandate of Rei and that it was time for a "new order" to emerge in Akitsu. To many Akitians this appeared to be true because of the famine that had recently struck, and thus Hidemori attracted recruits from all over Akitsu rather than just the villages he had captured. The King of Shoku saw this and commanded the armies of Shoku to attack Hidemori. A large force that outnumbered Hidemori 10 to 1 was dispatched. However the attack against Hidemori ended in failure when much of the troops defected to Hidemori. Using this victory to further legitimize his claim to the Mandate of Rei, Hidemori launched a successful campaign to conquer the south. Upon capturing the south other warlords in Akitsu rebelled in all over Akitsu, further weakening the Kingdom of Shoku. Using this chaos to his advantage, Hidemori launched successful campaigns in the central region and then northern region. By 1190 Hidemori had conquered all of Akitsu and established his own kingdom in Akitsu, ending the Shokukoku period.
Nichinari Period (日成時代)
Hidemori's conquest of Akitsu marked the start of the Nichinari period (日成時代) which lasted from 1190-1381 AD. Hidemori tried his best to create his "new order" in Akitsu. The first thing Hidemori implemented linguistic reforms intended on making Japanese the language of Akitsu. Hidemori also implemented architectural reforms that were meant to "upgrade" Akitian architecture. One of Hidemori's policies was to establish a warrior class in Akitian society that had not previously existed. This warrior class would eventually become known within Akitsu as "Senshi" (戦士), though some people in the West call them "Akitian Samurai".
These reforms were unpopular with the people at the time. However, Hidemori was viewed as having obtained the Mandate of Rei and thus the people tolerated this. The policy on language resulted in the Japanese language becoming the spoken language of the upper class of Akitsu, and this set the ground for Japanese to be adopted by commoners over a long period of time. Akitian architecture that had existed until then dissappeared in all major cities during this time, being replaced with Japanese-inspired architecture. The emergence of the Senshi class dramatically changed the socio-political landscape of Akitsu, with several powerful Senshi clans emerging. By the end of the Sennari period Akitsu had changed drastically, and these changes would last even after Hidemori's death.
Hidemori instituted these reforms because, at the time, his intention was to transform Akitsu into a province of Japan. He hoped to eventually use it as a home base for an invasion of Japan. In order to establish Akitsu as a Japanese province, Hidemori believed that he needed to Japanize Akitsu. Most of his policies were aimed at making Akitsu more like Japan in preparation for eventual integration with Japan. When Hidemori died in 1243 he was succeeded by his son Toyomori. Toyomori didn't share his fathers vision of conquering Japan, instead prefering to keep Akitsu an independent nation. While Toyomori continued his fathers policies of Japanization, he also changed military policy to one of defense in order to keep Akitsu an independent nation. Toyomori died in 1304 and was succeeded by his son Yoshimori, who continued policies along the same lines as Toyomori.
By 1370, there were 5 powerful Akitian Senshi clans. These clans were the Kobayakawa clan, Ichikawa clan, Eda clan, Kawaguchi clan, and Ikehara clan. In 1380 the Eda clan led these clans in a plot to overthrow the then-ruling Yoshimori. These clans viewed the Kingdom that Hidemori had established as a declining power and decided that in order to strengthen Akitsu the rule of Yoshimori's kingdom must be ended. They launched a series of attacks near the end of 1380 with devastating consequences for Yoshimori's army. Since these clans consisted of the bulk of Yoshimori's military forces he was completely overthrown in 1381. The Eda clan then established the Eda Dynasty, starting the Eda Period of Akitian history.
Eda Period (江田時代)
The Eda period (江田時代) lasted from 1381-1410 AD and is marked by the short-lived Eda Dynasty. The Eda Dynasty attempted to assert it's control over all of Akitsu, but was met with resistance from other Senshi clans. The Eda Dynasty attempted to use force to bring these clans in line, which only caused resentment from the other Senshi clans who felt that the Eda Dynasty was trying to unjustly take power away from them. As more force was used by the Eda Dynasty to bring Senshi clans in line, more and more resentment grew, until finally in 1405 open rebellion broke out. Various Senshi clans claimed that they had inherited the Mandate of Rei and established their own states. Though the reasoning for the claim on the Mandate of Rei varied, all claims maintained that the Eda Dynasty had never inherited the Mandate of Rei at all and that their rule was illegitimate. By the middle of 1410, the Eda Dynasty had lost control over much of Akitsu, ending the Eda period.
Eisen Period (永戦時代)
The Eisen period (永戦時代) immediately followed the Eda period and lasted from 1410-1658 AD. This period is marked by a state of near-constant war between the 5 major Senshi clans as well as various coalitions of minor Senshi clans. After 2 centuries of constant war there were three factions that clearly had a large advantage in the war compared to other factions. The first was the Kobayakawa clan, which had gained control of all of the northern regions and had an advantage in manpower. The second was the Green Coalition, a coalition of minor clans named because of their banner which featured the color green. The Green Coalition was led jointly by the Hirosawa clan and the Hoshino clan in a diarchy and controlled the central regions. The Green Coalition had military officials that were more well-versed in the art of war than the other factions, and thus had a strategic advantage. The third was the Ikehara clan, which had gained control of much of the southern regions and all of Itsukushima and Izumijima and had established numerous defensive fortifications giving them an advantage whenever they were involved in a defensive battle.
During this people several Akitian Senshi escaped westwards and established their own kingdoms on the Gusuku Islands (to the west of Akitsu's main islands), which before then had not been considered part of Akitsu in spite of the fact that people living there spoke the Akitian language. The Gusuku Islands fell relatively quickly to these invasions. As time went on these kingdoms would start to attract the attention of the various Senshi clans fighting in Akitsu. However, they avoided conquest by selling weapons to all sides involved. This not only ensured that they wouldn't be invaded but also greatly benefitted them economically.
Between 1600 and 1658 numerous battles were fought between the Kobayakawa clan, the Ikehara clan, and the Green Coalition. By the time 1658 came all other factions had been eliminated, leaving these three factions left. An unofficial ceasefire was declared between all three factions. Each of the factions established their own government and continued to claim themselves as the sole legitimate governing authority over Akitsu. The Kobayakawa clan called their government the Empire of Akitsu and set up an absolute monarchy. The Green Coalition set up the Kingdom of Hirohoshi (named after the two clans leading the coalition) and continued their diarchy. The Ikehara clan established the Kingdom of Akitsu, another absolute monarchy. Once this happened the constant state of war ended, along with the Eisen period.
Retsukoku Period (裂国時代)
The end of the Eisen period marked the start of the Retsukoku period (裂国時代) which lasted from 1658 to 1867. This period is marked by tense relations between the three kingdoms that made up Akitsu, and occasional skirmishes between the three powers. It was also during this period of time which Akitsu first came into contact with more advanced civilizations. All three kingdoms, fearing for their own safety, restricted the activities of foreigners. The extent that it was restricted varied from nation to nation. The Kobayakawa clan allowed foreigners to conduct trade through a single, designated port. The Green Coalition allowed foreigners to conduct trade in a select few approved ports, and even then only via an intermediary. The Ikehara clan allowed foreigners to conduct trade through a select few approved ports, and allowed foreigners to stay within a designated area for a maximum duration of 2 weeks.
1854 was the beginning of the end of the Retsukoku period. It was this year that some Akitian fisherman witnessed a naval battle between foreign nations. This showed Akitians the full extent of the military power of foreign nations. During this time Japan was also opened up through force. This came as a shock to many Akitians as most Akitians thought of themselves as the superior military power at the time. This worry directly led the three Akitian kingdoms, in the hopes of avoiding being conquered, to begin modernizing.
Kindai period (近代)
This marked the start of the Kindai period (近代), which lasted from 1868 to 1899. This era is marked by the rapid modernization and industrialization of Akitsu. All three kingdoms had the technological basics for such a change through their limited exchange of information with foreigners, but because of the extent of the policies each kingdom developed at a different pace. The Ikehara clan's Kingdom of Akitsu was able to modernize the fastest, while the Green Coalition's Kingdom of Hirohoshi lagged behind considerably. Nonetheless, by 1890 all three kingdoms had advanced a considerable degree. All three kingdoms were quick to adopt the a very different political system, abandoning the idea of the "Mandate of Rei" and adopting psuedo-constitutions called "absolute laws" (絶対法律) which granted some freedoms such as the freedom of religion.
Akitian culture also saw a slight change during this period. The old Senshi class began to gradually fade away along with the old class system, being replaced by a class system based more on wealth. The Akitian upper-class then felt the need to distinguish themselves from the "lower classes". As a result many rich Akitians began to dye their hair various colors. The most common color dyed varied from region to region. Later on rich Akitians would also begin to tattoo their cornea's. Though in other parts of the world corneal tattooing was only temporary, in Akitsu the procedure was permanent due to the properties of certain unique plants grown in Akitsu. While hair-dyeing continues to be practiced by some Akitian elites to this day, corneal tattoing is no longer common due to concerns over the success rate and risks of the procedure.
In 1891 the political landscape of Akitsu began to change drastically. The King and Queen of the Ikehara-backed Kingdom of Akitsu died when their heirs were only 6. The heirs were the twins Keisuke Ikehara, a boy, and Satomi Ikehara, a girl. Due to the rule of male primogeniture, Keisuke was next in line for the throne. The uncle of these twins, Jiro Ikehara, was appointed regent. Jiro however wanted Satomi to succeed to the throne rather than Keisuke. He hoped that Satomi would leave all the ruling to him, essentially giving Jiro power over all of Akitsu. Jiro also thought that there was no way that Keisuke would allow this as he was already talking about what he wanted to do when he became ruler. Once Jiro became regent he secretly arranged for Keisuke to be moved to a middle-class family who had long been servants to the Ikehara clan, though publicly he claimed that Keisuke died of an illness. Keisuke also had his penis and testes removed by the order of Jiro. He was worried that if Keisuke ever had any children who found out about what had happened they would rebel in an attempt to reclaim the throne. After spending 6 years in this family, Keisuke returned to the royal family as a servant. Jiro chose to let Keisuke live in order to use Keisuke as a tool to keep Satomi in line, and he used Satomi as a tool to keep Keisuke in line.
Jiro ruled the Kingdom of Akitsu was done in a manner that many consider to be tyrannical. Jiro had zero tolerance for any sort of dissent, and publicly executed anyone who he even thought opposed him with a guillotine he had imported from France. Whenever Jiro ran low on money he simply forced his subjects to give him extra money outside of the normal tax. Naturally the people didn't like this and Jiro's rule was widely unpopular. However, Jiro also made the public image that Satomi was influencing his decisions, causing the public to despise Satomi as well.
One day when Satomi and Keisuke were 14 a delegate from the Kingdom of Hirohoshi arrived in the Kingdom of Akitsu. During this visit it is known that Satomi and Keisuke fell in love with one of the royal family of Hirohoshi. Jiro, fearing that if this resulted in a royal marriage he would lose power, Jiro ordered an invasion of the Kingdom of Kazeshima and extermination of the royal family of Hirohoshi. In order to hide what really happend, Jiro wrote in the official records that he invaded because Satomi's love had fallen in love with someone from Hirohoshi.
The Kingdom of Hirohoshi's armies had grown weak after years of peace and were unprepared for war, while Jiro's armies had been conducting regular military drills and were much more prepared. The Kingdom of Hirohoshi fell under the control of Jiro very quickly and all of the ruling class of the Green Coalition was executed. In order to ensure that Keisuke didn't get any aspirations of his own, Jiro had Keisuke observe the executions in order to scare Keisuke into obedience, though on official records he put down that the servant Keisuke took part in the executions.
Many people thought that the reason for the war that Jiro put forward was ridiculous. They saw it as another abuse of power by Jiro and Satomi. Most of these people professed allegiance to the Kobayakawa-backed Empire of Akitsu, both due to a surge in Akitian nationalism and the fact that the Empire of Akitsu was doing a much better job of protecting the rights it granted it's people. Significant portions of the army defected as well, resulting in a successful coup de'tat within a single week. Jiro and someone thought to be Satomi were dragged out immediately after the coup to be executed by guillotine. Jiro was stomped to death by the masses before reaching the guillotine. "Satomi" on the other hand was slightly better protected and reached the guillotine, and was executed. Keisuke's fate was never revealed, and it is thought that he was killed along with Satomi by the masses who assumed he was in league with Jiro.
Shortly after Jiro's fall, the new government petitioned the Empire of Akitsu for unification under the Kobayakawa banner, a proposal which the Empire of Akitsu accepted resulting in unification in December of 1899. This marked the end of the Kindai period.
Kobayakawa Period (小早川時代)
The period between 1899 and 1960 is referred to as the Kobayakawa period (小早川時代). During this time the Akitian government underwent many changes. The most notable change being the transition from an absolute monarchy to a constitutional monarchy. The Kobayakawa family, which had become the royal family of all of Akitsu, felt that they would be able to stay in power longer if they gave up some of the powers they currently had. As a result they called for a formal constitution to be drafted. The first Akitian constitution was established in 1905. Under this constitution the rights of the people were guarenteed but the Emperor retained most of his political power. The most notable change during this era was the establishment of a legislative branch and executive branch separate from the Imperial house. This constitution remained in effect until 1960, when a new constitution was created formally establishing a judicial branch, which previously had been considered an extension of the legislative branch, and reduced the powers the Imperial house held. This new constitution remains in effect to date.
The Kobayakawa Period is also marked by the Akitian expansion into the Gusuku Islands. The earlier kingdoms in Gusuku had benefitted from the weapons trade with Akitsu, but once Akitsu modernized these kingdoms could no longer provide Akitsu with weapons of the caliber they desired. As a result their economy began to stagnate. During this time a movement started by a group of people who believed that Gusuku would be better off if united with the rest of Akitsu. This Akitian nationalist movement was sparked in part by an increase in Akitian nationalism in the rest of Akitsu, the same one that contributed to Akitian unification. The movement eventually led to the annexation of the kingdoms that made up Gusuku into the Empire of Akitsu in August of 1901, following negotiations between Akitsu and a diplomatic team from the kingdoms that controlled the Gusuku Islands that ended in the Akitsu-Gusuku Annexation Treaty.
Akitsu attempted to remain neutral during World War I but got involved on the side of the allies. Akitsu got involved after the German East Asia Squadron attacked an Akitian naval patrol, after mistaking it for a Japanese naval patrol. Akitian forces supported allied operations in Asia and the Pacific during World War I. However, they did not take part in the Allied intervention in the Russian Civil War.
Akitsu managed to stay neurtal in World War II. Remaining neutral during World War II was much more difficult for Akitsu, compared to World War I. In the end, Akitsu managed to remain neutral due to a combination of deals and military strength. At the time, Akitsu struck many deals with Japan, mainly economic ones. Most of these deals involved Akitsu exporting arms to Japan in exchange for assurances that Japan would respect Akitsu's neutrality in the conflict. At the same time, Akitsu made sure to make statements to the international community that it did not support Japan's conquests in Asia. It even rejected an invitation from Japan to join the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere.
Another important part was Akitsu's emphasis on a strong military. Though Akitsu's military was not as large as Japan's, it was well trained and well equipt to deal with any invasion. During World War II Akitsu's military established many fortifications in Akitsu in an attempt to make any invasion by any nation, allied or axis, extremely costly. Both Japan and the Allies considered invading Akitsu, but eventually abandoned the idea due to an extremely high rates of predicted casualties.
The Kobayakawa period also marked a few new cultural developments in Akitsu. Baseball was imported from Japan and quickly became a massively popular sport, and remains the dominant sport played in Akitsu. Mahjong was also brought to Akitsu during this period, and it also became extremely popular. The most commonly played variant of Mahjong in Akitsu is Japanese Mahjong.
Shinkoku Period (新国時代)
The period after 1960 to the modern day is called the Shinkoku period (新国時代). It is marked by steady economic grows and a large amount of political stability. During this period the political focus shifted away from war and the military and more towards gaining a strong economy, allowing the Akitian economy to develop rapidly. Eventually the Akitian economy became one of the stronger and more developed economies.
During the Cold War, Akitsu largely remained neutral, preferring not to get involved in the worlds events. However, economically Akitsu started getting more integrated with the rest of the world. Trade restrictions were eased, allowing for easier trade with other nations, allowing Akitsu's non-military industries to flourish due to a large influx of imports. During the early decades of the Cold War, Akitsu's economy was one dependant on imports. However, as Akitsu's non-military industries developed Akitsu slowly became more and more of an export based economy, though imports still play a very important role in the Akitian economy.
Politics and Government
Akitsu is a constitutional monarchy and the powers of the Emperor are very limited. However, the Emperor still retains influence within the government. That said, power is chiefly held by the Prime Minister and the State Committee. Both the Prime Minister and State Committee are elected by the people of Akitsu. The current royal family is descended from the Kobayakawa clan which formed the Empire of Akitsu in 1658. The current Emperor of Akitsu is Kaito Kobayakawa and the heir to the throne is Kuroo Kobayakawa.
Akitsu's legislative body is the State Committee which is made up of 180 seats elected by popular votes when dissolved every 5 years. The State Committee is unicameral, meaning it only has one chamber. All adults above the age of 20 have universal suffrage, with a secret ballot for all elected offices. There are minor parties in Akitsu, but the three main parties are the Liberal Democratic Party, Nationalist Party, and the Democratic Party.
The Prime Minister of Akitsu is the head of government. He is appointed by the Emperor, but is designated by the people through a popular vote. The Prime Minister is head of the Cabinet and appoints and dismisses various ministers. In the 2010 Akitian Prime Minestral election, Toru Fujiwara replaced Kogoro Nakamori as Prime Minister of Akitsu. Although the Emperor appoints the Prime Minister, the Constitution of Akitsu explicitly requires the Emperor to appoint whoever the people designated in the elections.
In the early 20th century, Akitian politics were dominated by the Nationalist Party, a centre-right political party that ran it's campaigns on maintaining complete political neutrality and isolation while maintaining a strong military force in order to preserve Akitian independence. The Nationalist Party's influence on politics was considerable, and for a long time it was the only political party with control of the government. However, in the 1920's some members of the Nationalist Party grew dissillusionned with the Nationalist Party. In 1932 these members broke away to form the Democratic Party, a centrist political party. However, until the 1950's Akitsu is generally agreed to have been a one party dominant state. In the 1964, the Emperor of Akitsu demanded a series of reforms, resulting in the Kobara Convention and the subsequent adoption of an entirely new constitution. This constitutional convention ended in, among other things, massive electoral reform allowing minor parties to flourish. Subsequently, the Democratic Party became the main opposition party, with Akitsu becoming a two-party state.
In recent times, the Liberal Democratic Party has been rising. It is a centre-left party, grounded in liberal and progressive values. Founded in 1960, the party initially didn't get many votes. However, they quickly became a big player in Akitian politics, being the first party to advocate for Akitsu to come out of it's political isolation. In the 2000 Akitian general election, they surpassed the Democratic Party as the main opposition party. In the 2010 Akitian general election, they attained their first majority in the State Committee, albiet a slim one (majority by only 1 seat).
Akitsu is probably amongst the most tolerant nations in Asia in terms of LGBT issues. This is largely believed to stem from a religious belief, which states that homosexuality is not a sin nor is it unnatural. It is known that during and before the 1500's homophobia, some say to an excessive level, was a norm for Akitsu. Then religious authorities made the Declaration of the Acceptance of Homosexuality (同性愛受入宣言), which formally declared homosexuality to not be unnatural. Before this, homosexuality was considered to be unnatural and disruptive to nature. However, even after this the road towards accepting homosexuality was a long one. Homosexual acts were still criminalized in 1940's. However, during the 1950's and 1960's religious figures made a concerted effort to promote LGBT rights and improve the situation of the LGBT community. Though by this time Akitsu was mostly irreligious, religious figures succeeded in starting a popular movement. In 1974, same-sex acts were decriminalized. In 1985, the right to change ones gender was legalized. In 1990's same-sex marriage was legalized and LGBT people were allowed to openly serve in the military.
Historically, Akitsu has been a semi-isolationist nation in terms of foreign relations. Akitsu has no major military treaty obligations, and has not joined any major military alliances. However, Akitsu has not hesitated to strike economic agreements with many different nations in order to secure imports that are necessecary to keep it's industrial economy running.
Akitsu tried to remain neutral during the First World War, but this neutrality was broken after an Akitian naval fleet on a routine patrol mission was attacked by the German East Asia Squadron. The Germans attacked by mistake, thinking that they were actually attacking a Japanese fleet, and indeed this was the position that the German government took up in Akitsu's letters of protest. This directly led to Akitsu declaring war on Germany on September 5th, 1914. The Germans continued to believe that Akitsu was lying to get an excuse to declare war on them until the end of the war.
During the Second World War Akitsu remained neutral successfully. The nation struck numerous agreements with Japan during this period of time, making several concessions to Japan, and as a result managed to stave off invasion by Japan. The Allies were worried that Akitsu would either be invaded by Japan or, due to it's close cultural ties to Japan, form an alliance with Japan and join the war against them. In spite of Akitsu's attempts to remain neutral, both Japan and the Allies planned invasions of Akitsu. These invasions were staved off in part due to Akitsu's agreements with Japan, and in part due to Akitsu's strong emphsis on it's military at the time. Akitsu's military was strong enough to where both Japan and the Allies concluded that the cost of capturing Akitsu was too high to justify an invasion.
The current Akitian government has stated that it wishes to come out of isolation, and has stated that they are considering various nations to form different agreements with.
In terms of disputes, Akitsu has very little disputes with it's neighbors. A notable exception to this would be the Gusuku Islands dispute, a territorial dispute between Akitsu and China. China claims the Gusuku Islands, which it calls the Penghu Islands, as their own on the basis that it was once a tributary state of China.
Akitsu consists of 18 Provinces (県, ken), each overseen by an elected legilature (known as a Provincial Committee), Governor, and administrative beauracracy. Each province is further divided into cities (市, shi), towns (町, cho or machi), and villages (村, mura).
Akitsu's economy started growing significanly in the early 1900's, a mere few years after unification. This was prompted not only by government-led projects but also by trade. Akitsu's industrial capacity expanded, especially during the First World War. From 1900 to 1960, the major industry in Akitsu was the arms industry. Akitsu imported metals and other raw materials while exporting weapons and other armaments to other nations in the area.
Since 1960, the arms industry of Akitsu has been in a steady decline. Instead, a technology industry has been steadily on the rise and expanding it's grip around the world. Major computer companies such as ASUS, ASRock, Gigabyte, and Acer are based in Akitsu. However, Akitsu's technology industry is not limited to only computers. Mobile phone maker HTC is based in Akitsu as well, and electronics manufacturing giant Foxconn is based in Akitsu. Computex Kobara, a major computer expo, has been hosted in Akitsu since 1983.
Akitsu still does import many different products for it's economy. The most common import is raw materials for the various industries based in Akitsu. Other imports include chemicals, textiles, fossil fuels. Akitsu also imports, albiet to a lesser extent, machinery and equipment, along with foodstuffs (particularly beef).
For the most part, the vast majority of Akitians speak the Japanese language as their first language. Even so, most only speak the Akitian dialect of the Japanese laguage in their everyday language, a dialect that linguists call Akitian Japanese. Akitian Japanese is extremely similar to the Hiroshima-dialect of Japanese, sharing many of it's features. For example, the copula ja (じゃ) is used rather than the copula da (だ), ee (ええ) is used instead of ii (良い) meaning "good", and kee (けー) is used instead of kara (から). Standard Japanese is considered extremely formal speech in Akitsu.
Japanese is also the most prevalent language in Akitsu, being spoken not only by more than 90% of the population, but also being used by the government as the official language.
Akitsu does have it's own native language however this language has been in a steady decline. Today it is mostly spoken in the Gusuku region of Akitsu. The native Akitian language is believed to be related to the Ryukyuan languages spoken in Okinawa. Native Akitian and Ryukyuan are so similar that at times one can do a word-to-word translation of sentences.
Akitsu is a largely ethnically homogenous nation, with a population of 33,214,135. 92% of those people are ethnically Akitian. Ethnic minority groups include 3% Japanese, 2% Korean, 1% Okinawan, and 4% other groups.
Akitsu has a relationship with religion that is unique. For all intents and purposes, Akitsu is a irreligious nation. In the past three decades, around 83% of the population has consistently identified themselves as irreligious. However, this does not mean that Akitians don't partake in religious rituals. Akitians do partake in rituals, such as the rituals of Reido (Akitsu's native religion), but these are seen as cultural practices rather than religious practices. As such, Akitians don't see themselves as taking part in a religious activity when doing these rituals, instead they see it as a part of Akitian life.