Infamous image of a traffic warden drafted into service as soldiers mutiny, 3rd Jan 1991.
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The Questarian Revolution, also known as the December Revolution or the 1991 Revolution was a series of events in Questers, which culminated in King Stephen IV, being deposed, the Questarian royal family permanently exiled, and the creation of a Communist Commonwealth in Questers. The new state, supported by the Questarian Communist Party, trades unions, the Armed Forces and various student and left-wing organisations, continues to the present day. Vast changes in the social, political and economic structure of Questers have been seen as a result of the revolution.
Although it was influenced by the Pollonan Revolution, it did not happen because of a war, foreign intervention, or total government collapse. It is therefore somewhat rare in the history of revolutions, having been also noted for the speed of the post-revolution changes, its general popularity, and general non-violence. The Questarian Revolution continues to provide a model for left wing activists throughout the world today, and the general model with which the Questarian Communist Party approached the revolution has since been considered a standard model by communist parties across Maredoratica.
While the effects of the revolution were far-reaching, especially in the economic sphere, relations with other countries have been normalised since the late 1990s, as other Maredoratic countries, especially Alisnan, have become closer to Questers. After the revolution, Questers returned land that it had conquered from Varnia in 1942, paid reparations for the Questarian colonial legacy, and embarked on a worldwide foreign aid program. For some, the single-party and economically centralised state created in the revolutions aftermath have been a source of tension, and major political parties in many countries still focus an anti-Communist political stance based around the events in Questers.
The Questarian state refers to the revolution as "a peoples bloodless overthrow of capitalism", and although there was relatively little fighting in the early stages, foreign analysts believe between 10,000 and 450,000 individuals were imprisoned, detained, or otherwise disappeared after the revolution. The Maredoratic Organisation for Human Rights official investigation into the Questarian revolution settled on a figure of 57,550 individuals detained as political prisoners, 11,090 killed in violence during the revolution and 24,903 killed in extrajudicial killings after the revolution, and 980 individuals executed by the state for political crimes. The outlawing of parties other than the Questarian Communist Party has led international human rights organisations to label Questers as a totalitarian dictatorship.
In Questers, the revolution is usually referred to as The Revolution or The December Revolution since it began in December 1990. It is sometimes called 1991, referencing the date the King abdicated, or 1990 referencing the date it began. It is only called the Questarian Revolution when being compared directly to foreign revolutions, such as the Morivaine, Varnian or Pollonan revolutions. In the 1990s, it was often referred to as the Christmas Revolution, but this description has become politically incorrect.
- Communist Party organisation
- Powerful unions
- Economic breakdown
- Military intervention
- Regime violence
During the 1950s to 1970s, the government of Charles III followed a policy of import substitution industrialisation, a consequence of the difficulty in building its industry during the period. Questers raised a significant debt during this period; industries were heavily subsidised, with funds often sourced from foreign credit, and an expansionary monetary policy had led to high debt and inflation. Charles II's government had taken out huge loans denominated in foreign currency, which became increasingly harder to repay due to the falling value of the Pound. Stephen IV came to power in 1979. His new government found it impossible to contract the expansionist monetary policy without causing job losses in major industries, but at the same time payments in foreign loans were becoming increasingly burdensome. In 1981, the Government held a series of talks called the Lanchester Agreements, in which the majority of foreign creditors agreed to delay collection of loans in exchange for restructuring the Questarian economy. In April 1981, Stephen IV launched his first austerity budget, rapidly contracting state subsidies and attempting to control inflation. Unemployment grew from 1.2 million in 1979 to almost 7 million by 1985.
In response to mass industrial and political unrest, the Government massively expanded the Royal Marshalcy: the Public Peace Act 1982 allowed the Marshalcy to use deadly force to secure public order. When Marshalcy opened fire on a strike in Haschester in April 1983, killing 400 and injuring at least 1,000 people, the Communist Party began a small scale guerilla war.
On 5th July 1983, a cross-Parliamentary group attempted to pass the Bill of Petition, petitioning the King for increased civil rights and political freedoms. In response the King dismissed Parliament, arresting many MPs. Stephen IV was then nearly assassinated by a group of Communist army officers; the attempt is usually cited by historians as critical: it turn Stephen and the Army against one another and signaled the end of moderate liberal opposition to the King. By the time the first loan repayment delays expired, the Questarian economy was not in any better shape; real national income had fallen by 30% between 1976 and 1986. The government was forced into a more serious austerity program, with more layoffs; unemployment grew to 15 million by 1990. In 1989, Questarian Energy announced a new contract which was condemned by the Trades Union Congress (TUC) and KCP. Questarian Energy's workers announced a strike in September 1990, causing electricity production to fall by almost half. The Questarian Energy strike is usually seen as the direct catalyst for the revolution.
Exile of Stephen IV
Murder of the Royal Family
There were still members of the Royal Family in Questers, notably the Crown Prince and his brother. On the 7th of March, 1992, they were exiled also, along with all the direct relatives of the King, including three of his cousins and his nephews and nieces. They were summoned to Jesselton Central Detention Centre on the 14th of March, and at midnight on the 14th, departed in convoy, escorted by a squadron of the Jesselton Yeomanry to the air force base at Honway Bay, still Jesselton. The Crown Prince and his pregnant wife, Seina of Boaga, would take an air force C-130 to Boaga, and the remainder of the Royal Family would take a separate plane and join Stephen IV in Galla. At Honway Bay airstrip, the Yeomanry handed over the Royal Family to G Squadron, the Special Air Service (SAS). Before the handover, the Crown Prince offered his sidearm to the commanding officer of the Yeomanry, who refused to take it, reporting to have said: "I think you ought to keep that, Sir."
At 2:25 AM, the Royal Family heading to Galla was put on a bus to the other side of the airport, and the Crown Prince and his wife went in a land rover to the other side of the airport. Both were escorted by the SAS. The bus and the land rover shortly disappeared from one another's sight. At 2:33, the bus stopped, and the driver got out. At 2:34, the bus exploded, killing its sixteen occupants instantly. The convoy carrying the Crown Prince also stopped. Sources vary about what happened in the Crown Prince's land rover, but both the Crown Prince and his wife were shot and killed. An autopsy has never been carried out. The next day it was reported that the bus was destroyed by a bomb planted by "anti-state saboteurs". Until 2014, it was believed that the Crown Prince and his wife died in the bus with the rest of the Royal Family.
This was the official story until 2015, when the Ackleman Inquiry found that the Special Air Service, under the direction from the General Staff, had intentionally planned the murder. Questers was heavily condemned both in 1992 and 2015 for its refusal to issue an apology for the events, which galvanised anti-communist feeling in Alisna and worldwide.