The Gallente Federation: Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Sex, Drugs, and Rock and Roll
Though some records exist of early Gallente history (which incorporates your standard “ahh we had tribal people and we fought sometimes and yadda yadda yadda” early history stuff), the rise of the Rouvenors is considered by most historians to be the true beginning of Gallente society (I’m basing that on the very reputable fact that the Rouvenors is when the Gallente wiki starts to actually care about silly things like dates and places).The Rouvenors arose from a small kingdom in the middle of the continent of Garoun, from a city known as Cylle (known in the modern day as Caille). With plentiful food and room to grow, the Garoun Empire soon expanded across the globe. And then the empire made what most historians consider A Mistake: They discovered human rights and junk. People started to think that MAYBE ruling by monarchy through one family line wasn’t the smartest idea in the world. Shortly thereafter, the empire began to collapse as states split away in the name of self-determination. Though the empire collapsed to a mere shadow of its former glory, it persists to this day, and the Rouvenors are still revered as the founders and nurturers of modern liberal philosophy.
industrial age, which is really only notable for the fact that the Gallente went steampunk for a little while (yes, CCP, I totally caught that). Throughout this era, however, the planet continued to nurture this funny little idea that government by the people was the best way to go. Anyway, the Gallente then went full bore through the atomic and information ages, with a brief interlude of tripolar hegemony that basically devolved into everyone deciding that they should sing Kumbaya around the campfire and trade instead of fighting. It should be noted that while everyone loved one another, apparently, the entire planet was still divided into a multitude of nations, though most shared the ideas that individuality and democracy are pretty awesome. The most notable developments here were two-fold: the formation of the World Democracy League (CCP’s thought process here apparently being, “Hey, what can we call the United Nations without calling it the United Nations?”), and, near the end of the information age (inventing the internet apparently being a thing), the discovery that oh, hey, people live on the next planet over.
The discovery of the Caldari in 22463 AD understandably shook the Gallente to the core. An International Space Cooperative was formed shortly thereafter, which organized robotic probe missions to what would soon be known as Caldari Prime. The Caldari, originally baffled by the shiny metal things falling from the sky (they were mid-industrial age at the time), eventually figured out that someone was going to go all ET on them soon, and first contact occurred 54 years after the Gallente first discovered the Caldari. And the peasants rejoiced, especially when the Gallente started catching the Caldari up on 200 years of technological development. Within 80 years of first contact, the two planets began building stargates (a bit behind the Amarr due to the fact that the gates in Luminaire were less well preserved).
|The stormy southern hemisphere of Caldari Prime, Luminaire|
But getting back to our story, it turns out the ISC wasn’t always the smartest. Despite the fact that two groups of humans just HAPPENED to pop up on two planets in one star system, they were completely blindsided by the concept that humans would be found outside Luminaire: in this case, the Intaki. In a brilliant display of ingenuity worthy of a cliché ‘80s film, the crew of the Sojourner decided to go native for a year to learn about the Intaki. They liked what they saw, and eventually, the newly formed Office for Foreign Planetary Development sent a second ship to establish more permanent relations with the various Intaki tribes, as well as to start modernizing their planet. They took to this a lot better than the Caldari did, and quickly embraced Gallente technology and ideas.
Shortly thereafter, the Luminarians (I sadly can’t call them the Federation yet and I’m left with that monstrosity of a name for them) also ran into the Mannar, which were a bit farther along in the technological development area. Although the Gallente were eager to establish contact, they ran into a small problem: there was no planetary government and they still had this weird thing called “war” going on (although their predilection for near-nudity endeared them to the more exhibitionist Gallente, they were a bit more turned off by the continued use of human sacrifice). You see, the Mannar weren’t the entire race: they’re only one nation on a planet with a multitude of them (and, more importantly, the biggest), and the various countries didn’t particularly like each other (slave raids will do that to a people, as the Amarr learned). So the Gallente did what any civilized planet would do: give technology to the non-Mannar nations on the planet. The Gallente were shocked – SHOCKED I SAY – to see that the other nations then used their new-found technology to invade Mannar (Kumbaya never quite caught on beyond Gallente Prime, sadly). For somewhat unexplained reasons, the Gallente public still preferred the Mannar over the non-human-sacrificing nations, and the newly-developed Sotiyo-Urbaata drive (more commonly known to us as a plain old “warp drive”) allowed the Gallente to impose their glorious open-mindedness on the planet, forcing peace onto the planet.
Originally, the Federation operated solely under the province of the Federation Charter, which established the basic structure of the government. At that time, the Federation acted more as a parliamentary body than the more presidential-style government we see in action today (whoops, there’s my poli sci geekery getting the better of me). Early Federation government was concerned with getting itself set up. Outside of consolidating power, the biggest thing of note during the early years was the passage of the Aclan Agreement, which required direct Senate intervention before any Federation corporation was allowed to tamper with a planet’s ecosystem. That agreement, the hallmark of modern environmentalism, remains in force to this day. However, the Federation initially had major issues coordinating reactions without any way to communicate in real time. Interstellar policy is a harsh mistress, and the days or weeks that were needed for any official Federal response was often fatal to Federation initiatives. It would remain this for the next 25 years, until the FTL communication was discovered by scientist Li Azbel (I discuss the basics of the tech in section 5).
era of 24-hour news channels that had nothing better to fill their time with than fluff pieces and soft news stories (I’M NOT EVEN MAKING THIS UP YOU GUYS). Anyway, it turns out that the 49th story on the plight of the poor from Luminaire fed people up enough to demand some basic human rights. And so, in addition to the federal Charter, a federal Constitution was drafted that granted basic human rights such as freedom of expression, thought, etc.
Oh, and 23149, the Jove introduced themselves to the federal government, but everyone kept it hush hush. With predictable results, conspiracy theories soon flourished.
Oh, and it turns out the Caldari were still pissed off. We’ll get into the motivations of the Caldari more in the next section, but suffice it to say for now that they had continued to establish their secret colonies because they resented Gallente domination. Whoops. And those colonies were discovered. Double whoops. While this action was technically legal, tensions rose even further on the technicality that none of the newly discovered colonies had representative governments. The Caldari used this to conveniently announce that neither did they: the megacorporations now spoke for the Caldari people. Triple whoops. Things were getting awkward. And the best way to handle awkwardness is clearly to have an ultra-right wing party come to power, and within days, the Senate was demanding that the Caldari submit the colonies to federal authority and establish democratic governments.
In response to the demand, the Caldari walked out of the Senate and the Caldari seceded from the Federation. The Federation responded by blockading Caldari Prime. Things stalemated from there, with each side being frozen by not being sure just how far they really wanted to push things. A Caldari splinter group took care of THAT little obstacle by attacking the Gallente underwater city of Nouvelle Rouvenor, on Caldari Prime. The attack killed 500,000 mostly Gallente citizens. Though the Caldari State disavowed the actions, they did little to crack down on the organizers.
|The Gallente-Caldari War|
After Heuromont, the Gallente realized that MAYBE revoking basic liberties wasn’t the way to solve a crisis that basically started by not allowing people enough freedom. The right-wing government was swept away, and the new president introduced significant reforms to the Charter and Constitution. The reforms brought the current three-branch system of government that we all know and love. Furthermore, the de jure capital was moved from Gallente Prime to Villore (with the hideously named of Libertopolis being made the capital planet) to show that the Gallente were not meant to dominate the Federation. Oddly enough, they didn’t quite notice that “Gallente” was in the name of the Federation, a fact that baffles experts to this day. Anyway, the new president, Yiona, saw to the re-establishment of the rule of law in the Federation, and basically did her best to clean up the mess of the ultra-right-wingers.
|A Chimera-class carrier in orbit.|
stumbled across the Jin-Mei. The Jin-Mei were a culture unlike others they’d seen heretofore; despite being relatively advanced (to the point that they were able to field basic military space vessels), they maintained a strictly regimented, caste-based society. Despite the fact that the Federation required all member worlds to have a democracy-based system of government, the Jin-Mei were eventually allowed to join the Federation and simply opt out of those pesky “equality” rules (apparently the Federation was Canadian based, who knew? Ok, seriously, I’m done with the poli sci geekery).
But by far the most notable event in the middling civil war era was the discovery of the Amarr Empire, which ended up triggering a kind of identity crisis for the Federation. You see, the Federation had, since its founding, seen itself as the grand union of all humanity. It united all people peacefully, spreading democracy and free trade through the cluster. And then, suddenly, it wasn’t the only representative of humanity out there. Indeed, it wasn’t even the largest. The Amarr Empire was more populous, stronger, and practiced slavery. And it most certainly was NOT democratic. It took a while for the Federation to re-orient itself towards the idea that it wasn’t just a grand union: it was a government just like the other major powers (it’s this re-orientation that I think made the Gallente more willing to accept the Caldari peace accords eventually, since the Caldari would no longer be the only humans outside the Federation, but that’s just my own pet theory). Anyway, trade relations were eventually opened with the Empire, and the two powers found themselves in an uneasy truce, with neither willing to challenge each other directly.
all over it. The plight of the enslaved Minmatar quickly became well known throughout the Federation, and significant chunks of the electorate felt that something needed to be done to talk the yoke from their backs. And after the setback for the Amarr at Vak’Atioth, the Gallente eagerly pitched in to help with the new Rebellion. The advantages for the Federation were two-fold: first, they had a genuine interest in eradicating slavery (yet couldn’t commit to a full-scale war while still at war with the Caldari). Secondly, the Federation was eager to knock the Amarr back as a matter of morale for a Federation that was still re-adjusting to not being the only human government in existence. So the Gallente, along with the Jove, coordinated supply runs to help the Rebellion. While the Federation never officially acknowledged their role, the Federation press secretary might as well have been actually winking at the camera whenever someone asked about it.
As we all know at this point, the rebellion ended up succeeding. Given the heavy support that the Federation provided, you might have expected the newly formed Republic to join the Federation. But many saw this as simply impractical, both because the Federation could not afford the massive reconstruction effort (either in money or in manpower… that whole “Caldari War” thing was still going, you know) and they didn’t want to risk antagonizing the Amarr more than they already had. So while the Federation and Republic grew to be close allies, they remained distinct governments.
As the Caldari War dragged on in to later years, more and more of the younger generations began clamoring for peace. They had not been around for the horrors of Hueromont and Nouvelle Rouvenor; they just wanted this war to be over with. In fact, they wanted all war to be over with. The Federation had originally been formed to allow all humanity to air its grievances in a civilized fashion… if the Federation itself had failed in this task, might a new organization succeed better? The leader of the movement was a young Senator (and later, Federation President) named Aidonis Elabon. The fruits of his labor, of course, was CONCORD, and he somehow managed to get all the empires to sign on to the idea. Capsuleers and pirates have been retroactively cursed his name every since.
|Scope coverage of the Malkalen Disaster|
|Crystal Boulevard, Gallente Prime|
Culturally speaking, the Gallente are just as varied as a society based on the celebration of the individual would suggest. The Gallente love for finer aspects of life are well-earned; the Gallente are well known for their food, fashion, and ability to have a good time. And given that the Federation is the melting pot of the Cluster, it shouldn’t surprise you to learn that its rather difficult to classify anyone based on their racial backgrounds. Not only have almost all of the various races in New Eden found their way to the Federation at this point, but they’ve also interbred to a significant degree. Those looking to classify Gallente citizens in ANY way are more likely to find success by looking at a person’s ideology than their racial background. Indeed, that is the biggest identifier of the various voter blocs in Gallente politics (along with an odd, but appreciated obsession with various birds).
That being said, there are a few primary ethnic groups to be found in the Federation. The ethnic Gallente take the stereotypical Federation love of all things individual and liberty to the extreme. Beyond them are the Mannar, who rival the ethnic Gallente when it comes to fashion expertise and trend setting, but are also known for their fierce nationalism and determination. They were the primary source of recruits in the Caldari civil war. The Jin-Mei are a bit of an outlier. In a nation that is renowned for its dedication to democracy and equality, the Jin-Mei maintain a strict caste-based system. Although the caste-system, under the agreements that the Jin-Mei made when it ascended to Federation membership, is not allowed outside of the Lirsautton system, the system still operates in full force within Jin-Mei society due to Federation concessions. Oh, and then there’s the Intaki. But they’re special enough to warrant an entire section on them below (and NOT just because my character happens to be one).
PREVIOUS: The Minmatar Republic
NEXT: The Caldari State