First Session of the International Open Forum (IOF)

Discussion in 'The World Stage' started by Touzen, Nov 25, 2017.

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  1. Bergenheim

    Bergenheim Well-Known Member

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    Angela Zweigler had been trying to follow the various back and forths going on in the Hall, confident that she could settle more focused things with Jedreck at the next break, yet she was quickly beginning to regret turning her attention back to the conference at large. She rolled her eyes at the rustic imbecility of the Elbe delegate, banging his hand like a child on the table. Truly, the Kingdom of Elbe remained, at least in Bergener eyes, the hillbilly Germanic nation.

    Yet when the incredibly arrogant Engellexic spoke, in their deliberately torturous and archaic way, she had to blink her eyes. She had studied Engellexic and could speak it well enough, but she requested the diplomatic translation anyway.

    She tried to unpack just what nonsense had been said. Her incredulity got the better of her, and she found herself thumbing the microphone on her desk to speak.

    "Forgive me, honourable delegates. I fear I do not understand what has just been said. If this is indeed as our esteemed colleagues from Kashtan say, simply a means for nations to talk...then I fail to see its utility in affirming the pleasure or displeasure of the Engellexic Republic, or indeed any other sovereign body. Any motion, resolution or conclusion reached by this body would have no binding weight whatsoever. If I understand my honoured colleague of Engellex correctly, they want some guarantee that the resolutions of this house not only be...uh...non-binding, but also non-raisable if the Republic finds them unsuitable. Am I correct?"

    She looked around, and realised people were staring at her now, but for quite a different reason. She resisted the urge to turn crimson with embarrassment.

    Well, she'd really poked the lion now....
     
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  2. Crotobaltislavonia

    Crotobaltislavonia Well-Known Member

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    Jedreck was reading his copy of the IOF document for what seemed like the hundredth time. If not for his budding "Bergenheim Connection" (heh heh heh, Jedreck laughed inwardly), this trip would be a complete waste of time. He should be back home in Saint Dumas, cozying up to President Farrago, sending communiques, and summoning ambassadors to demand explainations for impossible problems.

    A nudge in the ribs from an aide brought Jedreck's attention back to the proceedings. Lord Boxer from
    Engellex was speaking. When Boxer was finished, Jedreck was bewildered. Is Engellex actually demanding a veto? Pretty ballsy.

    The next speaker was a more pleasant surprise. It was Zweigler. Jedreck pulled the translation away from his ear so he could listen unaided. And then, as the woman's question hung in the air and she looked around, Jedreck smiled and gave her a little salute from his brow. Good for you, Angela.
     
  3. Gunnland

    Gunnland FTR

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    The Engellexians had made a ridiculous suggestion. But the whole thing was kind of ridiculous. Like any sane Gunnishman, James Gallagher basically thought that civilization stretched from Seaguard to Bremen, and from Midweis to Ouistreham, with a few beleaguered outposts in the northwest and in Himyar. The fall of Engellex in the distant past, and the recent failure of the civic process in Beira, were big blows to civilization. But Kadikistan? Kashtan? Xinhai? Implaria? These weren't civilized places. Never had been.

    James Gallagher stood, making sure he gave a broad smile and wink at the hillbilly German, Schlabrendorff. He avoided the looks of the Burgundians and the Eiffellandians, whom he knew were allies only historically and theoretically when it came to the Tibur Question.

    "The Holy See is involved in a papal conclave at the moment, of course, but the Kingdom of Gunnland believes that the Holy See ought to be recognized by this body, not as just another sovereign nation, but as an authoritative teacher of the principles of international law. Tibur ought to be recognized by this body and its court, perhaps even serve as that court. I even presume that the Holy Father, when Pius XII has a successor, could rule on the amusing suggestion from our friends from Dulwich and Elephant-and-Castle."
     
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  4. Tiburia

    Tiburia Well-Known Member

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    The Pelasgian delegate, Angelos Kastoriades, turned to his Beiran counterpart, rather perturbed by the impertinent assertions of the "Tiburan".

    "The Southern Tiburan Empire does not 'style itself' as such, but has been called thus by the laws of ancient Tibur since the division of the Tiburan Empire in the third century AD. If Beira has managed to break itself away from the Southern Tiburan Empire, the sole remaining part of the Tiburan Empire, then it cannot honestly expect to continue calling itself Tiburan and deny the legitimate successor of Tibur that right. The Senate of Tibur has been relocated in Christoupolis for centuries. And while Southern Tibur might be ethnically Pelasgian, Urudoah, Haydian, Hiberian, Memphite and so forth, it is civically Tiburan and always has been so. To call ourselves Southern Tibur is not an irredentist assertion of sovereignty over any foreign territory; it is a mere statement of the factual nature of our polity and of its natural descent and evolution from the Tiburan Republic."

    Taking a sip of water, the middle aged man look back into the eyes of the Beiran delegate and continued his explanation.

    "The Empire has pledged itself to respect the polity of Beira and its sovereignty in so far as that polity does not seek to act in a hostile fashion towards Southern Tibur and to import the subversive and vitriolic ideology of Revolutionary Communism to our fair Ebony Continent, an ideology which is inherently expansionistic and would sooner or later seek to expand its cancerous grasp on Himyar at the expense of Christoupolis and her allies. As long as Beira continues to be a peaceful and peace-loving, law-abiding state, the Empire has neither reason nor right, and most certainly no desire, to waste its resources fighting wars against a country transitioning back into full civilian rule."
     
  5. Engellex

    Engellex Moderator Staff Member

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    It was not a likely probability that I, as Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Joint Committee, was going to discuss such mechanism, but, he said, taking in a very wide, very careful, sweeping observation of all assembled for the opening session. I am persuaded to the thought of it being found necessary in urging upon a bewildered Assembly, and upon a.. fine, but ruffled host, the necessity in taking the time - the one to recover your senses, and the other again to try their wings, before we all entered upon a course of fantastic historical agreement which more than any other required a serenity of mind and a well-formed judgement, which the eruptive events of the last past moments were very much calculated - intentioned or not - to destroy. Lord Boxer only had a tolerance for grand-standing when it was a preferred sport of himself, not others. The session had only be open for a short time, and representatives were not so different from rowdy geese. The best and brightest? Surely not. No, definitely not, the Engellexian Republic would not have suffered a century of reduction if that were the case. The petulant children of Europe have been waved off for a visit to Kashtan, and now the insufferable must be suffered, a red line will have to be drawn.

    If we are so determined to find agreement upon the question of European co-operation - for our mutually, and much wanted peace and stability - we should not at all events depart without chart or pilot upon that troubled and unknown sea on which this community of Europe had once already foundered (1920s*), and on which some of our most experienced and ancient mariners had certainly declined to spread their sails. He briefly paused. Most carelessly, would we assuredly be, to venture without a life jacket.

    I would like to believe that I am not alone with my sensibilities, he isn't, Kadikistan didn't even turn up, and despite the ideological hatred between them, Dulwich respected another that jealously defended what they had, though they respect them more when they politely accepted their cultural flaws and delivered themselves to Engell supremacy. In quite admitting that a particular species of agreement, like one needed for the International Open Forum, however greatly requiring for our Europe, was so unintentionally calculated to excite angry animosities, so calculated to stir up poor passions and factional hatreds among our civilised and noble, here assembled, that whatever agreement we might find ourselves compelled to adopt, should at all events be delicate, be convincing.

    There does exist a reservation by the Engellexian Republic toward an agreement of such a Charter, to possibilities of persecution by installment, and a likely succession of blisters prodded to keep alive very old sores, and awaken every dormant susceptibility among citizens of Europe's notably progressed upon that question of religion. The Charter is vague, open to many ideas, and interpretations of the principles and initiative of this cause, and invited are nations that make it their business to thrive in the freedom of grey area. Dulwich hates grey area. Much is achieved when everybody knows, and understands their place.

    The operation of the International Open Forum - one can correctly presume, would apply chiefly, and with courage, to that quarter of Europe (Tiburan Catholics) with regard to which they had too often been in the habit of making mistakes in their own judgement and legislation, and with regard to which it was of the utmost importance that such mistakes should be made no more - we are, belonging and partaking to a century quite unlike the others preceding. Do I possess confidence this Assembly will recognised that? Definitely, I do not. Lord Boxer understood it to be a personal freedom in deciding when and where to be subtle, and his gestured hand in the direction of the Gunnish person was very much not subtle. In Boxer's defence, if any other honestly believed it was a diplomatic duty of another Sovereign nation to endure and tolerate the vulgarity of the Gunnish suggestion, then the Republic was clearly wasting its time.

    Under these circumstances, he informed, with a stern clarity within his voice, and a sharpness of his posture, it will be the intention of the Engellexian Republic to introduce provisions as we thought would better answer our concerns, in participating within this noble and truly civilised initiative.

    I hope, truly, that that does provide clarity of our position and intent, to the honourable representative of Bergenheim.
     
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  6. Engellex

    Engellex Moderator Staff Member

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    She spoke in a calm, collected, and graceful manner; nothing, too, assertive.

    In consequence of remarks which have been made, and are not, altogether, quite unregular, upon what I had originally asked a moment ago, and hope you all might have noticed, Seraphina Underwood, Southern President, spoke. I would like to explain, in the consequence of an unfortunate misconception and misapprehension on the part of my respectable friend from the Kingdom of Gunnland, in which he gave this Assembly to understand that my considered question be opportune for a very much different character of question to be passed over without notice, and, as it appeared, perhaps, in silence. Now, that is absolutely not the case.

    I addressed this Assembly, and in doing so made a decision on the nature and sensitivity of my question as to properly and respectfully engage the attention and wisdom of the Sovereign nations represented. In doing so, I acted upon opinion that had been popularly, and democratically, expressed to me, as the President of the Southern Constituent Republics, and was agreed, within the Southern Congress, as being equally applicable and within the spirit of European equality, desired here; there existed no sentiment of exceptionalism within my question.

    A mechanism of proceeding, that which my question suggested, to permit the proper and equal progression of Resolutions - binding or otherwise - produced here, to be carried to the feet of our Sovereign governments, provoking no conflict domestic or international, ought to be found and adopted. She paused. My experience of the Southern Congress is that which suggests such considerations and ways, not introduced within this Charter, will undoubtedly fail to convince the Southern Constituent Republics of the effort required in legislating their consent to an agreement on the International Open Forum. And, as demonstrated just now, the noble Lord - head of the Engellexian Republic Parlement representation, has quite clearly proposed material inclusions to the Charter be introduced, as to sufficiently alleviate the greatest difficulties that surely surround his progress in legislating an agreement to the Charter, in Dulwich.

    My friend from Gunnland, she continued, inclining her head in a short, little bow, thought it appropriate to allude to our questions as to provide a good measure of Gunnish interest, one of a penal character, and savouring of persecution. Now, penal it certainly is.

    And I shall like to be permitted to remind the gentleman from Gunnland, that persecution is a very different thing at different periods, within different civilisations. People entertain very different notions of what persecution is according to the age in which it is exercised, and according to the society in which they live. I doubt not that when the Holy See had the poor and wretched of Engellex put to death for denying the Pope's supremacy, that they had not the slightest idea that they were persecuting. The Holy See, when it's Pope at the time burned the Angellexian ambassador and his family, never thought that they were a persecutor. No doubt that even the Holy Frankish Empire considered that all they did to the Engell peoples was redeemed by their tender regard for the salvation of souls, as prescribed by the Holy See. But those days are past, Mr. Gallagher? The question was not rhetorical. Seraphina smiled.

    I read and hear with regular occurrence, sometimes eloquently, speeches and letters arguing that the Tiburan Catholic Church and its members, throughout Europe, had every privilege which they could in reason, and without reason, expect to enjoy at great expense. The expense being a non-financial one. The greatest opposition is made in quarters of eminence and democracy to those privileges, which I believe you, all, are quite familiar with. She means SoCRER, of course.

    The measure proposed, by Mr. Gallagher, is the impolite advancement of that belief in an autocratic right, to be held by the head of the Holy See, over all peoples. Times are changed, Mr. Gallagher. If the Tiburan Catholic Church were not to be tolerated by laws nationally, can you correctly deduce how they might be tolerated at the international level politically? The Southern Constituent Republics admits that the Holy See is with the freedom and equality of rights belonging to any private enterprise to make full advantage of any opportunity permitting within lands and borders of other, foreign, Sovereign nations; I say it quite respectfully has the right to constitute themselves in a legal and regular manner, alike Sovereign nations, within property and territory they do so possess.

    I desire most ardently - although, as you all must be aware, I have obtruded myself but very charily on your attention - but I do desire, I say, most ardently, to have this time for the expression of the views of the Southern Presidency, and Congress, quite fully, on this subject, so expected, raised, and the conviction which I entertain that the course the International Open Forum shall pursue, in unfortunate consideration of the Gunnish proposal, is most fatal to the tranquility and progression of European co-operation.

    But should Mr. Gallagher's proposal receive serious consideration, I regret to inform, the International Open Forum shall consider it without the wisdom and civility of the Southern Constituent Republics.
    Seraphina Underwood drew her red line.

    I daresay, without the Engellexian Republic, entirely,
    added Lord Boxer, consolidating the Engell position with closed ranks.
     
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  7. Bergenheim

    Bergenheim Well-Known Member

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    The First Hand of the Republic of Bergenheim was now seriously coming down with a migraine. She felt like she was at a meeting with Robots from Outer Space, and not delegates from a country only a thousand or so miles away. Even after listening to both delegates speeches twice- once audibly, the other from her radiofeed translator- she only grasped the most bare essentials of meaning from their long, sonorous, and self-important speech.

    She wrote on her notepad "Ich Verstehe nicht", and tapped the notepad thoughtfully with her pen. No wonder all her predecessors had preferred to simply nod, smile and let Engellex do more or less whatever it wanted in the diplomatic arena. Yet, despite her confusion, despite her own timidity, she felt she had an obligation to make sense of all this, and try in some way to influence proceedings here, if only to prevent them from degenerating further into farce.

    "I agree with the Engellexian delegation." She said boldly, gambling that no one really understood much of what they said either. She followed up with her own interpretation of this, and thus associated her own opinion with Engellex. "The most important thing to accomplish right now is the foundation of this organisation, and avoid diffusion or diversion into other avenues. While we respect our esteemed colleagues in Gunnland, the Tiburan Question is a weighty one, and should not be addressed in this meeting. As the Vulgate Bible says, you cannot build a house upon sand*. Let us then, put aside the issues we wish to discuss, until we can at least have a Forum to discuss them in."

    She realised that her fifteen seconds of power were quickly fading however, and so she promptly sat down, and resolved to say no more, lest she start to really draw Engellexic ire. She also realised it would only become harder for her to understand their words, now that she mentally pictured them all as space robots from popular Engellexic sci-fi show, Inspector Time.

    Angela smiled mirthfully to herself.

    *=Matthew 7:24
     
  8. Elben

    Elben Well-Known Member

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    Schlabrendorff pushed a little button to let the chair know he wished to speak. Upon being recognized, the foreign minister got to his feet. As he looked around the chamber at his colleagues, not lingering on any one for more than a moment, his expression was one of solemn thought. He returned his attention to the chair and began speaking.

    "Colleagues from around the good europe, we're gathered here today by our hosts of Kashtan to enter into a dialogue as a means to further cooperation and trust. As the invitation noted, it is hoped that we will enter into a perpetual dialogue."

    The count paused for just a moment, the last two words hanging, and then continued.

    "Some of my counterparts here have questioned this forum and I will now add my voice to theirs, though not for the same reasons. I submit to you all that dialogue for its own sake is pointless and counterproductive. Dialogue is merely another word for that symptom of modernist thought that is known as relativism. When all parties are acknowledged as equals, no one is acknowledged to be right or wrong, better or worse, good or evil, even when such a condition is as plain as the nose on the face of a civilized person.

    "If we are to enter into perpetual dialogue, dialogue without end, where does it end? When will actions be met with consequences? Will those who suffer ever have their suffering relieved? Will evil go unpunished?"

    Again Schlabrendorff paused and glanced over at Angela Zweigler before going on.

    "This body may agree on rules for dialogue," pronounced now with just a hint of a sneer, "but it will always be built upon sand. Those who would convoke this body in the name of peace would have us forget the name of Michael Schwarzmann and the names of countless others like him. They would have us look away at glamorous lodgings and opulent structures while evil is done right under our noses. I will not turn away. Will you?"

    Count von Schlabrendorff took off his headphones and began packing his notes into his valise, ready to leave.
     
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  9. Kir Chares

    Kir Chares Well-Known Member

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    "It is ...not... sensible.... that you would be here, if you did not wish to participate in dialogue!" Ba shouted at the Elben delegate without being called on, his translator doing her best to make his words polite, even without the mans headphones being on. "Do you seriously participate in these talks, knowing what the aim is, and yet refute it nonetheless? Are you ...lacking smarts? You have made your intentions here clear enough, leave!"

    The soldiers face itself was ghostly pale, for she felt she was impertinent and rude, yet Ba's face was flushed with blood and vitriol. It was clear he did not like the propositions put forward prior, but Ba restrained himself from addressing them, for now. Instead, he had opted to chide Elben for its childishness. Indeed, the warnings he had spoken before seemed truer, those that spoke to alter the document at hand had more interest in ensuring the forum was not created through obstructionist demands rather than constructive collaboration.
     
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  10. Occitania

    Occitania Active Member

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    After receiving their copy of the document and listening uncaringly to the back in forth going on. Eleusium declared that "We're very happy about the strive for peace as so do our people. However I see little point in participating in this unless free trade between all members of the International Open Forum is established. I see this because our nation is already very peaceful and has little quarrels with the rest of the world. I realize though, that perhaps free trade would be best suited for a resolution after the establishment of the International Open Forum. I therefore declare my support of the Charter of the International Open Forum."

    "I have heard Count von Schlabrendorff's argument against the Charter of the International Open Forum but I must admit I cannot understand his concerns. It seems to me the proposal doesn't mention anything about perpetual dialogue over nothing. If anyone here is sensible, we will be getting things done not sitting around babbling to each other. Legally, we would be discussing how to enact peace in Europe and that is all that matters to I and undoubtedly, the rest of Occitania."
     
  11. Nicosia

    Nicosia Well-Known Member

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    Prince Hugh and his counterpart had discussed in depth the offer from Gunnland in the limousine. It was a curious proposal but they had given curt nods to indicate they would discuss it later. Now they sat watching the show unfold. Several times Prince Hugh had to struggle not to roll his eyes at the grandstanding. Unlike the other delegations, the Burgundian delegation would sit back and watch everything unfold before weighing in. It was curious to Prince Hugh to hear rhetoric he thought was archaic. Where this would go, he had no clue. They had their own opinions on the charter- ones they would share. But first they would taken in the arguments.
     
  12. Beautancus

    Beautancus Timeout

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    More or less satisfied with the turn of events as they were progressing, Yedisanski amended to do much the same as his Burgundian counterpart had. It was something of an unspoken understanding that Chernovic interests rarely aligned with any agenda that seemed even to hint at the possible loss of national Sovereignty, and it had seemed very likely that he would have to go a bit out of his way to ensure that things would go...well, exactly as they appeared to be.

    The Chernovic Deputy Vice-Regent was rather pleased, nearly unto the degree, with the content of the full Engellexic 'position,' being perfectly fluent in that language (if not so very many others) and capable of following nearly all that was said without much difficulty. To be fair, that was far from an uncommon state of affairs and had long been thus, Chernovic and Engellexic interests aligning in mutually beneficial ways. A habit that had likewise long allowed for the development of a happy collaboration and friendship - that would continue here today.

    It happened to be that Chernovy was here more to the effect of pursuing an agenda of its own through those of a number of its partners, both regionally and from much farther afield. The fashion in which he'd best be able to fulfill all the obligations placed on him had weighed on Ilyaz Yedisanski every so slightly...far less so now.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2017
  13. Crotobaltislavonia

    Crotobaltislavonia Well-Known Member

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    "Colleagues from Europe, I must agree with our friend, the First Hand of the Republic of Bergenheim. Now is not the time to quibble over theory. We have a document before us. I say if you are in agreement with the document, fine. Voice your support. But if you disagree, now is the time to offer specific changes. I believe we are waisting our time by hearing what's wrong with the IOF, not how we can make it better."

    Jedreck glanced around the semi-circle with a smile on his face, trying to gauge reactions. He had no idea if his words would be accepted or not. He had no idea if the IOF would be a success or a failure. But as far as the Foreign Minister was concerned, he had just accomplished his mission to Kashtan. CBS had been heard!
     
  14. Polesia

    Polesia Well-Known Member

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    External Affairs minister Vladimir Pinski let out an audible yawn as discussions proceeded over the provisional IOF charter out forward by Kashtan. The Krasnislavian had had too much too drink in the introductory session at the Golden Pillar hotel, and was now too drowsy to function. He passed the document back to his advisers, who swiftly annotated it with notes and suggestions while whispering into Pinski's ears. But in truth the minister was largely uninterested in the event. His attendance was largely to appease the Kashtanese, who had agreed to Trivodnia's scheme to squeeze more money out of wealthier nations to pay for the war on drugs. His real focus was the elections back home.

    In reality, Amstov barely cared beyond its own region - the whims of Engellex and others of little concern.

    Pinski's aides passed him the charter back. He yawned again, and waited for the perfect opportunity to speak.
     
  15. Eiffelland

    Eiffelland Well-Known Member

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    "Apparently the Engellexians still don't realise that their empire has declined," Kögler whispered to his aides, at such a low volume that nobody outside the Eiffellandian delegation could hear it. Then he switched on his microphone.

    "Ladies, gentlemen, I think it would be better if we focus on the matter at hand, meaning the draft charter of the IOF. I do understand the importance of the points of discussion that need to be solved between countries bordering each other, but please let's create the platform to discuss those points first."

    He paused a moment. Then he continued.

    "I have one suggestion for an amendment of the charter, or basically a question. What happens if a country wants to leave the IOF? Currently the draft charter does not contain any articles on that."

    He paused a moment. Then he continued.

    "We have heard some suggestions for amendments to the draft charter. One of them is, basically, granting a veto possibility to a large member country. I don't think that would be wise. It would give that large member country a waiver to do whatever it likes—it doesn't need to care for the opinion of the majority of the IOF anyway, even if it is a vast majority, because it can veto that opinion away. This would be against the basic idea of the IOF.
    For the suggestion to offer the Tiburan Catholic Church a membership, I have doubts about this. The Tiburan Catholics are not only Tiburan Catholics, but also citizens of countries. When the country they are citizens of is an IOF-member, they are already represented. They would be represented twice if the Tiburan Catholic Church would represent them as well. I do want to hear the opinions of religious leaders, because they do have an important message about peace and love for fellow humans. I only do not think that religious leaders should have votes in the IOF."

    Then he turned off the microphone, sat down, wrote a note on a paper and had the note passed on to Lyam. The note read: “Could we talk about Michael Schwarzmann today or tomorrow?”
     
  16. Touzen

    Touzen Administrator Staff Member

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    "I do not believe that it would be wise to give a religious body control over this organization - indeed, allow me these frank words, I would consider it to be counter-productive. The International Open Forum was proposed under the auspices of a vision that proposes the universality of national sovereignty regardless of creed, race and other factors that are often cited as reasons to divide us. It is specifically for this reason that the proposal that you have in front of you now is a minimalist one - one that can be agreed upon by all nations.

    In response to the Engellexian inquiry, I can only speak for myself and the position my government have for this charter of course. But as far as this opinion is concerned, we should not have a mechanism of enforcement - indeed, I do not believe that this is a body with legislative power over sovereign states. In fact, my government would be rather opposed to such a notion. The character of the resolutions as suggested in the draft would be a volitional one. If the esteemed delegation from Engellex of course feels that this is insufficient, we strongly invite them to enter into the proceedings a notion for a formalized veto process, and I would be more than willing to hear arguments of this nature or another. I would however strongly suggest that the delegates would consider no proposals that put more powers in the hand of one government than that of another. This is a body, I believe, that should see us as equals, as much as the realities might be perceived differently across the globe."

    "Finally, I think the Eiffellandian delegation has articulated my sentiments regarding the role of religious organizations in the IOF rather well", he nodded towards Kögler. Eventually, he would pass him another note, simply reading "Yes, please".
     
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  17. Elben

    Elben Well-Known Member

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    Schlabrendorff made it to the lobby, his pair of aides behind him. The drone of voices uttering platitudes had resumed behind him, but were cut off by the closing of the door. The count half expected to be packed into a car and whisked out of the country. Or maybe he was thinking too fancifully?

    "Sir, how may I help you?" The voice belonged to a beautiful young ethnic Kashtanese woman wearing a fine, perfectly tailored skirt suit. She was all smiles.

    "Yes, I'll be returning to the hotel."

    "Of course." An attendant who was nearby turned to go without a gesture from the woman. Her smile was quickly replaced by an expression of concern. "You'll not be staying for the meal. Perhaps you'd care to dine first? We have a selection of our finest national delicacies prepared."

    "No, thank you."

    "It will be a long drive. Perhaps something to take with you and your aides to eat in the car. We do not want our honored guests to go hungry..."

    So it went. In the car, at the hotel, at the airport. Finally they boarded the plane and relaxed. It was a chartered flight staffed by Elbeners. The count's aide sat down next to his boss and remarked, "Must be what they mean by Kashtanese Nice?"
     
  18. Geotri

    Geotri Active Member

    Joined:
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    USA!USA!USA!USA!
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    Kidfisher
    Minister Kreutzwald sat back and listened intently to what was happening around him, noticing the what and how things were being said, who was paying attention and who were falling asleep. He noticed many had voiced their opinions on how the IOF Charter was written, every once in a while he glanced down and read another paragraph. As he continued on reading he realized that the Charter lacked a backbone, with no authority to push peace and prosperity between the peoples of the world. Whether or not he would want that is a different story, as it would ultimately trump individual nations rights to be a self governing people.

    He stopped glancing back down entirely, for a moment at least, during the exchange between the delegate from Xinhai and Ostrovakia. Something extremely worrying and unprofessional to bring outside tension into a place for peaceful discussion. Nonetheless, there hasn't been any reports of war yet so all is as it should.

    And he would still not be able to glance back down as more and more odd requests and statements were made, a once powerful republic grasping for any power to retain its glory, a head of a religious group who has yet to be elected placed on the council as if it were an independent nation. These things in and of itself were wrong, and only one was wrong due to the lack of enforcement on the Charter, but the biggest bombshell was the Malatanese delegation announcing this a waste of time. While this is true to an extent, having wasted so much time accomplishing nothing but petty arguments making many delegates sleep, but there is merit and a chance to fix what has been poorly made.

    He finally decided to stand up and address the crowd, "While I agree with our Kashtanese host on protecting the sovereignty of each of our nations, the Forum will be left weak and useless. For this institution to properly function it needs some power, enough to fulfill its purpose while maintaining the sovereignty of its members. Peace can not be achieved without the means to enforce it, while I greatly dislike the loss of our sovereignty, should we not give a little to achieve great things? To properly punish those who commit crimes against humanity, to help dealing with internal strife, to hopefully bring an end to conflict. These are the things I see this Forum doing. Talking and discussing these things is a start but there must be a means to make these discussions not just discussions, these talks not just talks, but to turn these into action and achieve peace."

    He sighed a breath of relief and took his seat.
     
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  19. Tiburia

    Tiburia Well-Known Member

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    Demos
    The Pelasgian delegate, who had largely been quiet up to that point due to a belated arrival owing to a flight problem on the first day, spoke again for the second time after the clarifications made over Beiran remarks.

    "It would seem, honourable ladies and gentlemen, that we are at a rather ironic impasse. On the one hand, an organisation which only has the power to make recommendations without any authority to enforce its will on other states is as powerless as the Assembly of Nations of the 1920s. On the other, it is entirely unsound that any sovereign state should render its own decision making capacities and its own sovereign power over its own matters inferior to that of a supranational body whose membership could potentially be composed of a majority or plurality of nations entirely hostile to itself. It is, after all, the definition of a state that precludes this, since a state is supposed to be the sole entity capable of using coercion to enforce its will within its own sovereign borders. A middle solution to this would be the informal agreement of nations to pressure other nations in complying with the will of the majority or of their own group, though how this would differ from current political alliances and secretive diplomatic machinations, other than adding the rubber stump of a global majority to them, is unclear. Surely, this most esteemed body, which was conceived to act a conduit for dialogue and understanding shan't be reduced to the likes of a global mafia or extortion racket.

    "Thus, one does have to wonder precisely in what way this charter could ever be enforced. The Empire does certainly applaud the initiative of Kashtan in presenting this proposal as a most gracious host, but we do have to question both the validity and the efficacy of trying to make this group anything more than a venue for discussion. Without wishing the repeat the failures of the previous millennium, we must honestly wonder whether clauses pertaining to voting on resolutions are really necessary, when even a clause of leaving this organisation is not present. Moreover, in its current form, the forum is open to all nations wishing to attend. Should we presume that we shall refuse the right of attendance to nations simply because the majority of those present disagree with their viewpoint, effectively doing away with the whole goal of being an all-inclusive international forum of discussion to begin with? If, for example, divinely ordained monarchies were to become the majority in this group, should that afford them the right to expel Republics, Communistic regimes, and all other sorts of states via a simple majority vote, or to refuse them membership to maintain their majority? The Empire has but two objections: one to restricting membership and attendance, and one to making this a body for passing resolutions, rather than deliberating and discussing important issues conveniently and without the need for the ad hoc hosting of extraordinary summits.

    "To all other clauses, pertaining to the presence of a Secretary General, of a 3 month period between sessions, of alternating hosts and so forth, the Crown of Christoupolis raises no objections. As for talk of granting religious institutions membership, we see no reason why non-state organisations, such as Churches, Parties, Charities, and all kinds of NGOs should be allowed to directly discuss with the government of sovereign states; what is Caesar's to Caesar and what is God's to God, as we say in Pelasgian. If these groups desire to discuss among themselves they have both funds and means to do so, and if our states wish to discuss with them, we can do so at our leisure. There is no reason for their being in a forum for international intergovernmental discussion, especially if this forum is to receive voting rights on resolutions, since practically every country here would be opposed to being seen as an equal to any number thereof. For example, there is no reason why this Empire should suffer to consider heretical churches its equals, or why the various atheist states in this room should see themselves rendered the equals of Churches, or why the religious states of Europe should accept the words of any temporal political parties which might make their way in this group, if Churches are allowed to do so first."
     
  20. Gunnland

    Gunnland FTR

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    Windhaven, Gunnland
    Prime Minister Gallagher was disappointed in the Eiffellandians. He knew they were Erastians of some kind, although he dismissed the rumors of the younger men in Windhaven who claimed that the government in Trier was a rat's nest of Freemasons, some continental variety of the Grand Lodge that ruled in Dulwich. But to hear them deny the Holy Church its preeminence rights and dignities... this saddened him. He rose with a conciliatory gesture.

    "I welcome a forum for international dialogue, even one between civilized nations and those that do not recognize the ius gentium of old Tiburan law, even with those nations who do not recognize the Tiburan pontiff as a sovereign, indeed the definitive source of all sovereign power. In Windhaven we know the world around us has changed, while we alone are constant as the northern star of whose true-fixed and resting quality, there is no fellow in the firmament. Our goodwill towards all nations, likewise, remains constant."

    His smile is gently condescending. It is clear he is a kindly chauvinist.

    "As a sign of this, I support the suggestion from my Pelasgian friend, the one who strangely believes that there is more than one universal apostolic church, that membership should not be limited, save perhaps for expulsion by a vote of two-thirds. The rest of the charter is amenable to us, and we salute our Kashtanese friends for taking the initiative to assemble this body."
     

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