History of the Independent Republic of Orange NationsEdit
IRON can trace its early history from the HeavenGames Outside Discussions forum. It was from the OD forums that “The OD Alliance” was formed on March 16, 2006. Originally IRON was not an Orange Team alliance, but rather a Red Team alliance. In the first weeks of the alliance, there were considerations for moving to the Green or Purple Teams before finally settling on the Orange Sphere. The prevailing theory behind The OD Alliance’s move to the Orange Team was the Citrus War. The aftermath of the Citrus War left a power vacuum in the Orange Sphere which the nascent IRON sought to fill.
However, other debates stemmed from the initial formation of IRON. The alliance was going through an identity change. “The OD Alliance” name would not last and several other names were cycled through. The OD Alliance was renamed twice, first as “The KoRT Alliance” and then as “ACHTUNG.” Finally, Loegaire suggested that the alliance be called the Independent Republic of Orange Nations, or simply IRON.
Additionally, the newly formed IRON lacked a charter or constitution. Early IRON was described by Shan Revan as being “something between anarchy and direct democracy.” IRON needed organization and several prominent members sought to draft a document that would create a framework for the fledgling alliance. The drafters included Shan Revan, Glyndwr, Kith Kanan, and Sister Midnight. After a few days, the discussion stalled until Kith Kanan suggested making use of the NATO charter as a launching point. IRON had its charter.
All that remained was appointing the first IRON Council. The IRON Council, spare two invitations, was composed of those who worked on drafting the original IRON Charter: Shan Revan, Glyndwr, Loegaire, Ender, Zambaman, Lonsberry, Good Ol MC, Kith Kanan, and Sister Midnight. The first IRON President was Sister Midnight, an individual who had previous experience running successful clans for other games.
Hence, modern IRON was formed. The formation of IRON was announced to Planet Bob on 28 April 2006. The best historical estimates place the size of IRON at around 60 members with, as Shan Revan states, “a nation strength in the tens of thousands.”
Early Diplomatic RelationsEdit
IRON swiftly moved to open diplomatic relations with several alliances on Planet Bob. The first official opening of diplomatic relations was with the Orange Defense Network (ODN), which has stood to this day as a mutually beneficial and successful relationship. IRON sought not to take over the Orange Sphere with force, but to work with other Orange Team alliances in the wake of the Citrus War.
The best historical accounts place the New Pacific Order (NPO) as the second alliance which opened official diplomatic relations with IRON. The NPO sent Bakunin’s Dream and Heft as their first Ambassadors to IRON. While early IRON-NPO relations were somewhat ambivalent, they would eventually smooth out into the friendly relationship as it stands today.
Another notable relationship was with the alliance OPA, which was a like-minded and similarly-sized alliance. IRON’s first ever Mutual Defense Pact was with OPA during this early period, but would only last a month before IRON adopted a policy of “no MDPs,” the precursor to a period of IRON neutrality.
Rising Power in the Antebellum PeriodEdit
After the Citrus War, IRON found itself in a strong position, both diplomatically and militarily. In its first few weeks, IRON encountered a rapid increase in aggregate nation strength. Part of this was a push toward the rapid development of a nuclear weapons arsenal. Within several weeks, IRON had the most nuclear weapons in the game for a brief period: 80. However, the NPO eventually beat IRON in the race to 100 nuclear weapons.
This arms race took a toll on the early IRON alliance. By rapidly developing nuclear weapons, many nations snubbed economic growth and quickly fell behind the NPO in the nuclear arms race. In the end, the NPO won out due to their world-renowned banking system. However, even though IRON lost this initial arms race, it was still one of the most powerful alliances in the pre-First Great War period.
The First Great War and IRON NeutralityEdit
IRON’s role in the First Great War was not significant to the war’s outcome. Rather, IRON’s influence came to bear after the war through their foreign relations policies. Just days before the outbreak of GWI, IRON signed a Non-Aggression Pact with the NPO. After the outbreak of war, IRON considered breaking this NAP and entering the war, going so far as to notify the NPO of a possible cancellation of the pact. However, this never came to pass and IRON stayed out of GWI.
This is largely agreed upon as the beginning of IRON Neutrality. Seeing how well IRON fared by not entering the war, much of the IRON Council considered neutrality as the best path to alliance growth. Upon consultation with the Green Protection Alliance, Doitzel and Shan Revan advanced the issue of neutrality. For a period, IRON would walk this path of neutrality.
Also during the First Great War era, IRON had a defection. Member Mongol had been with the alliance since it was small and he rose rapidly through the ranks due to willingness to work. He soon became temporary Head of the IRON military during the First Great War. He was also given access to the Council forum area. According to Mongol he saw evidence that IROn had a spying ring in NPO. He defected and gave out classified IRON knowledge to non-Council IRONers and people from other alliances. Mongol later joined NPO and even further down the line The Empire. Thus he was considered a defector and traitor to IRON and during the IRON-Empire war his nation was ZIed. He has not been seen since.
After advancing a policy of neutrality, Shan Revan proposed the creation of a solely neutral block which “had come to [him] in a dream.” The idea was to make a totally neutral, unaligned block capable of defending itself from raids and keeping itself out of major war. The idea was to make the offer to GPA, TOP, and VE, all of which were neutral alliances at the time. However, the idea met great resistance and was never implemented by IRON.
It was after this point that the Independent Republic of Orange Nations became “Independent” again.
Post-Neutrality, the Second Great War, and the EmpireEdit
After moving away from neutrality and reasserting itself in foreign relations, IRON found itself in a few minor conflicts in the Second Antebellum period. The most notable of these was the complete destruction of the first coming of Stormfront. Most of these wars were minor conflicts which sought due recourse for offenses against IRON.
Soon after leaving the path of neutrality, the Second Great War had broken out. However, like IRON policy of GWI, the IRON Council of the time declared non-combatant status in the war after a short deliberation. An incident occurred which nearly saw IRON aligning themselves with Legion and ODN in GWII. A close cooperative relationship grew between IRON, Legion, and ODN during this same period. The three almost created their own bloc, but decided the better of it in the end, cementing IRON’s neutrality in GWII.
After GWII ended, one of the original IRON Council members, Ender, departed from IRON and, along with Loegaire and Grand Emperor Brian, founded The Empire. The relationship never took off due to many diplomatic spats. While these spats were tolerated, the discovery of forum hacking in February 2007 was not and the relationship quickly deteriorated, resulting in a joint IRON and NPO attack on The Empire. Grand Emperor Brian largely took the diplomatic heat as Ender had apparently "gone to Canada" and hasn't been seen since the start of the Empire War. Sister Midnight and other prominent members were nuked multiple times by Loegaire. The result of the short war was the complete disbandment of The Empire.
It was also during this period that enmity developed between IRON and the Federation of Armed Nations. A number of minor flame-wars broke out in the CN forums, but these were eventually broken up through the efforts of the IRON State Department and several Councilors. The State Department was able to smooth over relations for the time being, but the relationship would never recover.
The Third Great War and a Return to NeutralityEdit
After the disbandment of The Empire, the Third Great War broke out which once again saw a declaration of neutrality on the part of IRON. The decision was not an easy one, as a vocal minority of IRON members at the time felt that war on the NPO was a feasible and necessary option, and a smaller segment wished to militarily support the NPO.
IRON would stay out of the war, but that did not mean that individual IRON nations sought to stay out of the fight. Many such nations left IRON to fight for both sides of the conflict. However, it was at this time that the IRON Council instituted the Closed Drafting Period, during which nations who left IRON would never be permitted to return. The policy was an effort to prevent maverick IRON nations from turning the alliance into a mercenary corp.
Orange Tension and the Transitional EraEdit
After GWIII, IRON entered a period of policy transition. However, this was also a period of high tension between IRON and other Orange Sphere alliances. This tension had two public manifestations. One such cause was the Maccers Incident, during which a long time IRON member known as Maccers the Great left the alliance under duress and in direct conflict with members of the IRON Council. As the situation evolved, several logs were released to the IRON Council revealing that confidential information was leaked.
The reaction from the IRON Council and membership was furious. Maccers had dispersed confidential information even after having signed and agreeing to not divulge classified information. This was considered a treasonous act by IRON’s classified information agreement and Maccers was placed on the IRON ZI List for his actions. Unfortunately, he had already applied to and was accepted into the ODN. IRON diplomats and Councilors notified the ODN leadership of the incident, but due process was required.
It is noteworthy and relevant to mention that the ODN at this time was not a protectorate of GOONS as a result of being a part of Aegis. The ODN was demilitarized and made to pay reparations to GOONS, being made a de facto protectorate. However, GOONS only provided an official protectorate after IRON's action. IRON considered these factors in addition to their long-standing friendship with the ODN and decided to permit due process for a time.
Maccers was given fair warning that the destruction of his nation was likely imminent. Hence, he began purchasing nuclear weapons as fast as he could in an effort to deter any possible attack. Even though IRON initially decided to respect ODN’s due process and trial system, IRON quickly realized the threat a nuclear-armed target would be and an attack on him was ordered soon thereafter. The attacks were made in conjunction with an infamous announcement on the CN, which resulted in ODN’s “surrender” several hours later.
This was somewhat of a diplomatic blunder on the part of IRON, with one of their closest and long-time friends perpetually surrendering to them. This would be the first and the last time in Planet Bob history that IRON had broken a treaty or agreement. However, a dialogue was soon opened and it was acknowledged that a new agreement was needed regarding the Orange Senate. Ultimately, IRON and ODN came out of the incident with a better understanding of one another and with a closer, more conversant relationship than in many months.
However, this was not the only instance of Orange Sphere tension. Around the same time as the Maccers Incident with the ODN, another incident occurred regarding the Orange Senate. Essentially, IRON was able to crowd TOP out of the third Senate seat, giving IRON two seats and ODN one seat on the Orange Senate. TOP did not react well to this and vehemently objected to the action. The result, however, was constructive and positive: IRON, ODN, and TOP all agreed to the Orange Senate Treaty, which in the words of Heft, was a way of “reaffirming [IRON’s] dedication and commitment to the Orange Team, our Orange neighbors, and general diplomatic good will and good faith.” The Orange Senate Treaty has stood to this day and is still utilized as the method of selecting the Orange Team Senate.
The End of the Forging Era and Foreign Policy TransitionsEdit
It was after the signing of the Orange Senate Treaty that IRON began to transition from the Forging Era, when IRON was initially cast, to the Transitional Era. Many changes were occurring throughout IRON, most notably on the IRON Council. Long-time President and Founder Sister Midnight left the Council after over 13 months of service. Sister Midnight then held the Planet Bob record for longest continually serving chief executive. bay102174 took over as President of IRON soon thereafter and would remain President until January 2008. Additionally, long-time Councilor and Founder Glyndwr also stepped down after 13 months of service. In February, Bill n Ted was appointed to the IRON Council and, two months later, was appointed as the IRON Minister of Defense, ushering in a new era of military discipline and organization within IRON.
Before leaving, Sister Midnight sought to change IRON’s foreign policy direction. She urged the Council to lift a long-standing ban on Mutual Defense Pacts or MDPs. Her reasons were made clear: IRON, while resilient and strong, could not stand alone in the fast-changing world of Planet Bob. However, it would be some time before IRON would actually completely lift the MDP ban. By all accounts, Furytear is given a significant degree of credit for his efforts in “securing contacts, leads, friends, and allies.”
Furytear was able to secure an Optional Defense Pact, or ODP, with ONOS, a GUARD nation, but this treaty was extremely short-lived. Amid planet-wide criticism that the ODP looked remarkably like an MDP, ONOS rebuked the treaty as “the wrong draft,” even after Furytear and his corresponding agent in ONOS spent several hours defending the document. To make matters worse, ONOS was soon thereafter caught executing illicit spy actions against the NPO which had been going on for several months on end. Once alerted of this fact, IRON dropped the treaty with ONOS.
The Transitional Era and Orange UnityEdit
The Transitional Era began with a turbulent start, but IRON was internally stabilizing. One such facet of this stabilization was the establishment of the IRON Academy. The Academy churned out a new generation of IRON membership and helped streamline military operations. Additionally, many dissenters departed IRON for various reasons, creating a more internally stable environment.
After the ONOS Incident, the Citrus Accords, better known as the Orange Unity Treaty, were signed during this same month. IRON was a late-comer to the OUT fold, which may be attributed to the recent Orange Team tension. However, IRON’s desire to show its commitment to the Orange Sphere coupled with a need to maintain good diplomatic relations with Orange neighbors helped railroad the treaty’s approval on the IRON Council. While this was not necessarily a defense pact, it still left IRON far better off than it was the month previous in terms of foreign relations.
It was also during this time that the fabric of The Initiative began to be cast in doubt. The NPO’s leadership position was gradually being eroded by both FAN and GOONS, through Yellow Number 5 and Shark Week respectively. These rumblings deeply troubled both the IRON Council and the general membership. To IRON, an NPO-led Initiative was more secure than a FAN or GOONS-led bloc, which would be ambivalent at best and hostile at worst.
IRON swiftly began drawing up contingency plans and began gathering as much information as possible regarding the fracturing of the World Unity Treaty. Then a foreign policy coup occurred: Furytear was able to hammer out an MADP with the MCXA, a close ally of The Initiative. Upon its signing, much of the world expressed shock at IRON seemingly giving up its long-held independence. However, IRON saw this MADP as a way of retaining its independence rather than being subjugated by large-bloc alliances.
The Mutual Aggression and Defense Pact with the MCXA was the true entry of IRON onto the world stage as a real power to contend with. However, the resolve of IRON to commit to this new treaty would soon be tested when FAN became far too aggressive with GOONS and the NPO. FAN was ejected from The Initiative and the FAN-WUT War had begun. On ten minutes notice, IRON announced it would respect its treaty commitments to the MCXA and declare war on FAN. Amazingly, that treaty was signed the same day and had yet to have been announced to the world.
The FAN-WUT War and the Unjust WarEdit
However, IRON had never been involved in any serious engagements before the FAN-WUT War. The war, however, helped educate the alliance on military matters. With help from their newfound Initiative allies, IRON was instructed on many military tactics, including staggering, coordination, and target assignment. What IRON lacked in experience, it made up for in the sheer number of allies they were fighting with. Diplomatically, IRON was able to demonstrate that it was a respectable alliance which respects its treaty commitments, which in some accounts is considered the rationale for their quick declaration of war against FAN.
The month after the war began, DarkMistress was appointed to the IRON Council. While she was relatively inexperienced, she would soon prove to be an integral part of IRON’s foreign policy apparatus. She was appointed to be Deputy Secretary of State behind Shan Revan, who took over the reigns of Secretary of State after Furytear left to join the MCXA. Soon after Shan Revan and DarkMistress established themselves within the IRON State Department, they acquired an MADP with the NpO and reaffirmed MDPs with NoV and TOP. Finally, the NPO MADP was drafted, edited, and signed capping off a “treaty blitz” the likes of which IRON had never before seen.
The IRON State Department would soon be extremely busy, as the world had to contend with several major crises. It started with the Pacifican Succession Crisis, which resolved itself peacefully but showed the NpO moving away from The Initiative. Soon thereafter was Modgate, during which several notable alliance leaders were banned and deleted for reasons unknown. This created many a diplomatic foray, especially in a case between the NPO and GOONS. While many alliances were affected by Modgate, IRON made it out unscathed.
It was at around this time that IRON had committed itself to the side of the NPO and began growing closer to the GGA in the fracturing Initiative, while simultaneously the Unjust Path bloc was formed and decreed. However, war was not on the minds of the UJP with regard to IRON, and many UJP alliances, including \m/, attempted to sign MDPs and various other treaties with the IRON State Department. Not only did these requests inundate the IRON State Department, most of them had to be carefully dealt, since most of them were to be rejected on the grounds of their agreements with MCXA and the NPO.
The opening of communications with the GGA and the continued improvement of relations with the NPO could be viewed as a precursor to the One Vision bloc, which still stands today. However, at the time, the NpO and the GGA had withdrawn from The Initiative and the WUT as a result of Modgate and the change of leadership. Soon thereafter, a nation within the GOONS protectorate of BAPS attacked and raided technology from a GGA nation. The GGA swiftly retaliated and, in response, GOONS counter-attacked. However, this spark would be temporarily stifled, as the GGA and GOONS attempted to settle the issue through diplomatic channels.
Unfortunately, soon thereafter, a protectorate of the NpO, BOTS, was attacked by Genmay, which was a WUT signatory and a member of the UJP bloc. The NpO swiftly declared war on Genmay and counterattacked while the GGA followed suit and declared war upon GOONS. Several MDPs were activated during this time, including the MDoAP between IRON and the GGA. IRON declared war on GOONS soon thereafter and the UJP War had begun.
IRON was able to manage GOONS handily, considering that TOOL and Golden Sabres also attacked out of respect for their MDPs with GOONS. Even more remarkably, the OUT was maintained, with the ODN and other alliances offering aid and combat assistance. After an extended period of fighting, IRON came out the victor over the GOONS. IRON had entered the Modern Era.
CON Merger with IRONEdit
The Confederation of Organized Nations numbers had been dwindling (fell to around 70 members) for a long time and diplomatic relations between CON and IRON were at an all time high. As 1 ex CON member would say CONs forums had more activity from IRON diplomats then CON members. It was announced on the 23rd of August that the two alliances would merge, The terms set dissolved what was left of CON, recycling all of her members into IRON, CON's government was to receive no special treatment, the members from CON were exempted from doing IRON's academy, becoming full fledged members immediately. Thus ending the proud history of The Confederation of Organized Nations.
The Modern EraEdit
IRON went from a 60 member alliance based on a gaming forum to an alliance of 660 members in less than two years. In that time, IRON went through several transformations, moving from neutrality to being a supporting alliance until finally becoming the world leader that many in IRON aspired for the alliance to become. IRON was truly “independent” now more than ever before.
In the aftermath of the UJW and the FAN-WUT War, IRON and several other alliances continued to fight a campaign of occupation against GOONS, FAN, and \m/. Furthermore, in January 2008, bay102174 stepped down as IRON President and the current President, Meterman, took his place. It was also during the post-war period that IRON, the NPO, the NpO, and the GGA signed an agreement which would form the One Vision bloc. The Continuum was also in the works in the weeks after the end of the UJW. It became apparent that IRON had finally become the respected alliance it had always aspired to be.
This newfound respect would come into play when The Continuum declared war upon the Green Protection Agency as part of the Continuum-GPA War. On February 13, 2008 IRON declared war upon the GPA for numerous perceived violations of its Declaration of Neutrality. IRON in particular was involved because of a GOONS aiding incident with a GPA member. The member in question was supposed to have been put on trial, but it was found that GPA had lied to IRON about the status of the trial. IRON participated in the initial update blitz and continued to fight with the GPA until March 13, the day The Continuum declared a cessation of hostilities. IRON received 10,000 tons of high-technology equipment as part of one of the most costly reparations deals in the history of Planet Bob.
During the Continuum-GPA War, IRON also declared war on the Wolfpack on March 8, 2008. This conflict, known as the Wolfpack War or the Puppy War, began due to allegations of spying by the Wolfpack on ROT, an IRON protectorate, IRON itself, and other allies. The war largely saw IRON and her allies in a one-sided conflict, as many Wolfpack nations simply did not retaliate against their attackers. The war ended March 22, 2008 with IRON splitting 18,000 tons of high-technology imports between itself and four of its allies.
After the Continuum-GPA War and the Wolfpack War, IRON experienced a period of unprecedented growth. It was during this time IRON surpassed 700 members and over 13 million nation strength, reaching its highest levels since the Third Great War. The decisive victories from these two wars made IRON an attractive, secure place for new and old nations alike to reside in. Additionally, IRON had firmly asserted itself as strong member of The Continuum, willing to uphold treaty obligations with its allies.
After a month of peacetime, IRON once again mobilized for armed conflict. On April 26, 2008 IRON, alongside its One Vision allies, declared war upon the Global Alliance and Treaty Organization, or GATO, for violations of its surrender terms from Great War III. The GATO-1V War soon escalated, as CSN declared war upon One Vision on April 27, 2008. In response, many of IRON and One Vision’s allies in The Continuum and other places declared war on CSN in defense of IRON, most notably ODN, CON, TORN, and R&R which are all members of the Orange Unity Treaty. CSN surrendered on May 17, 2008 to the One Vision bloc, while IAA disbanded soon thereafter followed by the withdrawal of USN from the conflict. The war between GATO and IRON is now over, with IRON prevailing. All nation wars with GATO have stopped, forming a treaty as of July 2008.
This period of war was not without its internal political developments, though. In late May 2008, Meterman stepped down from his position as IRON President after taking over from bay102174 in January 2008. In Meterman’s place, the IRON Council voted Heft, a long-time member and Councilor, into office. Meterman’s service, however, spanned three major, yet successful, wars and saw the consolidation of IRON’s position as one of the leaders of Planet Bob. While Meterman was not the longest serving President, his contributions to IRON will last far into the future.