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Eiffelland

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31 December 2020
Barqah, Eiffellandian Mandate Al-Magrab
23:30


An EKW E4 rushed over the three-lane Scheik Rachmahnboulevard to an address in one of Barqah’s older city quarters. The people in the car were RVS-Hauptkommissar Ingo Kurzenberg and RVS-Kommissar Markus Hoffmann. They had crossed half the city. Jonas Barsano seemed to have vanished. His parents didn’t know where he was, but gave his girlfriend’s address. His girlfriend was not at home, but Kurzenberg and Hoffmann had found out where she was: At a party in the city quarter they were heading to.
The EKW made a U-turn on a big crossing, drove a few hundred meters back, and turned into one of the side streets of the Scheik Rachmahnboulevard. The car halted. Kurzenberg and Hoffmann stepped out. It was not really difficult to get inside the building where the party was held. They had a picture of Jonas’s girlfriend on their mobile phones, and managed to find her quite soon. They saw Jonas with her as well. Jonas clearly enjoyed the kiss he was exchanging with his girlfriend. Kurzenberg and Hoffmann decided not to call an ASE-team but act themselves. Getting Jonas out of here by means of an ASE-action would have led to a very messy situation. They followed Jonas and his girlfriend to the toilets.
“I have something against taking your girlfriend to a toilet and fucking her there,” Kurzenberg whispered.
“Well, when a guy of that age is horny, he isn’t pretentious about the location, especially not in this scene,” Hoffmann whispered. “And the girls here aren’t pretentious about the location, either.”
“Can we get him out of here without anybody noticing it?” Kurzenberg whispered.
“Yes, we can. We take the emergency exit,” Hoffmann whispered while pointing at a door.
The noise of two people making love had already sounded clearly through the toilets, but now the screams of Jonas’s girlfriend and the groans of Jonas became really loud. People were coming to the toilet to find out where the screaming came from.
Scheisse,” Kurzenberg whispered. “The people are noticing us.” Then the door was opened. Jonas came out first, holding hands with his girlfriend.
“Hey, you two, are you cops?” somebody shouted. Jonas immediately ran to the emergency exit. Kurzenberg and Hoffmann ran after him. Jonas opened the door and ran outside. Kurzenberg and Hoffmann ran after him, but lost him.
Scheisse,” Kurzenberg said.
Großfahndung?” Hoffmann asked.
Then they heard the sound of a motorcycle. They ran to where the sound came from, but the motorcycle was away.
Mist!” Kurzenberg said angrily. “Mist! Mist! Mist!!!
At that moment, the New Year’s fireworks sounded over the city.
“In any case, happy new year,” Hoffmann said.
“Thanks. You too,” Kurzenberg said.
 

Eiffelland

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What is the result of 100 years of Eiffellandian rule in Al-Magrab?

Basically, the Eiffellandians rule with an even hand, but they rule. The high representative of Eiffelland has the right to veto decisions made by the Al-Magrab parliament.

Al-Magrab consists of three parts. The northern quarter consists of fertile lands, then there is a mountainous line, and the southern three-quarters is a desert (mostly rocks but also quite a lot of sand). The mountains contain copper and uranium. Oil is found near the city of Al-Gharb. The fertile lands provide citrus fruits, pineapples, coconuts, grains and cattle. Around the capital Barqah, there are many holiday resorts along the beaches. This is where the rich and middle class Eiffellandians spend their Summer holidays, and where the people who want to flee from the bad Winter weather go to. The northern quarter is also the mostly populated quarter of Al-Magrab.

One of the first things the Eiffellandians, who abolished the Fraktur printing font just before the Great War, did when taking over the mandate of Al-Magrab, was abolishing the use of the Arab and Hebrew alphabets. From then onwards, the languages spoken in Al-Magrab (mainly Arab and Ivrite) were written phoneticly in the Latin alphabet. Initially, this decision led to protests; later on, people began to realise that the use of the Latin alphabet made writing easier and, and also made it easier to learn foreign languages.
Nowadays, there are four official languages in Al-Magrab: Berber, Ivrite, German and English. Eiffelland felt obliged to make English an official language due to the mandate status of Al-Magrab. As a result, the law texts are in Berber, Ivrite, German and English. For the case of differences in translation, the Eiffellandians decided to make the German texts leading.
In order to overcome language misunderstandings, the use of pictograms is widespread. The traffic signs are the same as used in Eiffelland, with the addition of traffic signs to warn for sand storms and street-crossing camels.

Another thing the Eiffellandians did very soon was building roads an railroads. But there were some complicating factors in the 1920s: Steam locomotives need water, and that is scarse in a desert. So until the introduction of the diesel locomotive in the 1930s, there were no railroads in the South. Furthermore, the steam locomotive was abolished in Al-Magrab sooner than in Eiffelland.
Another problem in the desert is the fact that sand is blown over the roads, making them invisible after a while. As a result, there are no asphalt roads in the sandy parts of the desert, only in the rocky parts. But the sand inspired Raimer to build a six-wheel drive version of their all-terrain vehicle, which an Engellexian TV program dedicated to cars inspired to shoot a video with this six-wheel car in the desert of Al-Magrab.

From a legal point of view, Al-Magrab has a parliament consisting of local people, and a government consisting of local people. But the Eiffellandian government has the right to intervene in the case of mismanagement, and sets the financial boundaries. Furthermore, Al-Magrab is represented internationally by the Eiffellandian government, and defence is also a matter of Eiffelland.
As a result, quite a lot of Eiffellandians live in Al-Magrab. First of all, there is the department of the high representative of Eiffelland, who is basically the governor of Al-Magrab. Next to that, there are forces from the army, as well as naval forces and an air force division. And of course the secret service RVS consists of Eiffellandians.
But it’s not only representants of the Eiffellandian government among the Eiffellandians living in Al-Magrab. Many farms and many holiday resorts are owned by Eiffellandians. Also some of the logistics companies trading with the south of Hymiar, as well as some of the mines. Apart from the soldiers, who are replaced regularly, there are about one million Eiffellandian families who have lived in Al-Magrab for some generations, resulting in differences in the German spoken in Al-Magrab and the German spoken in Eiffelland.

Al-Magrab is a mainly Muslim country, but the Eiffellandians did push some things through. First of all, there is no Sharia in Al-Magrab. Furthermore, the rules on homosexuality and transgenderism are the same as the ones in Eiffelland: The age of consent is 16, same-sex marriage is allowed, and gender changes are recognised. This mostly doesn’t lead to problems in the larger cities, but does lead to problems in the countryside. One factor to take into account here is the phenomenon family honour. In order to flee for honour killings, Al-Magrab gays and lesbians often flee to Eiffelland. The Al-Magrab police does take action against anti-gay violence (including honour killings), but basically only Barqah and the holiday resorts around Barqah are safe for gays and lesbians.

It is in this land where Kurzenberg and Hoffmann had their case.
 
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Eiffelland

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4 January 2021
Trier, Eiffelland

Bastian Holzbrenner looked around him. He was in an abandoned and stripped office building from the 1960s, together with a lot of people. They had squatted the building. He was here together with the far-left group he was a member of about ten years ago. But this was not a democratic Eiffelland. This was a dictatorship. And Bastian and his friends were fighting against it.
Everybody was talking. The building was crowded. The sound of talking people was everywhere. Everybody felt that the police was on its way, and everybody was determined to stand his ground. It was time for revolution.
“Come, let’s barricade the entrance,” somebody said. Bastian and his friends walked down the stairs. The elevators didn’t work.
Then he realised that he had to go to work at the
RND the next day, and he hadn’t told anyone where he was. Not even Christoph. Furthermore, because of his leg problem, he wasn’t allowed to do this kind of work. He wasn’t allowed to carry items which were heavier than five kilograms, and he was definitely not allowed to fight. How had he landed here?

Bastian woke up. He was lying in his bed, naked, spooning his boyfriend Christoph. He realised that he had dreamt. About his friends from 10 years ago. About the far-left group he was a member of 10 years ago. People he lost contact with during his revalidation eight years ago. He hadn’t thought about them for years. And suddenly he dreamt about them. Why?
He turned around and grabbed his Nichsdorf Lumin smartphone to check the time. 3:36. The alarm clock function would go off in four hours. They needed to go to class today; Bastian at the Universität der Stadt Trier, where he studied informatics, and Christoph at the Technische Universität Trier, where he studied electronics to become an engineer in electronics.

Both were 6th-year students. An University education officially consisted of five years in Eiffelland, but it did not occur very often that somebody obtained his or her degree in five years. Most people studied six or seven years, because they had to work next to their studies (the state stipendia weren’t enough to live from; people needed either an additional part-time job or other additional funds), or because of commission or board work in fraternities or other kinds of students’ organisations. A board function in a fraternity or student organisation generally cost 6 months to a year. Luckily, there were no university fees; you could study for free and only had to buy the books. Only the stipendia stopped after seven years, although there were arrangements for medical, dentistry, pharmacy and law students (who had to perform internships for two additional years after obtaining the Magister grade), as well as for students who wanted to become teachers at secondary schools (who had to follow additional pedagogics and psychology classes for one year after obtaining the Magister grade).

Christoph and Bastian had the luck that Christoph had some money at hand. When Christoph’s father was convicted ten years ago, the Von Weizenburg family fortune was seized, apart from 1 million Eiffelland Mark for Christoph and 1 million Eiffelland Mark for his sister. As a result, Christoph and Bastian lived in better circumstances than most students. They owned the two-bedroom apartment they lived in, drove a 17 year old Darner Mistral IV, clothed themselves trendy, went on vacation twice a year, but also had jobs next to their studies. Bastian had a very special side-job: He worked as a hacker at the Reichsnachrichtendienst, Eiffelland’s secret service. And he already had the promise that he would be employed full-time after having obtained his university degree.

Bastian got out of bed, went to the toilet, emptied his bladder, returned to the bedroom, crouched into bed, and started to spoon Christoph again. After a quarter of an hour, he fell asleep.


6 January 2021
Trier, Eiffelland

Der Adler ist gelandet.” The eagle has landed. The standard phrase for a person or package that had arrived, since that federal mission to put a man on the moon. Bastian noticed it in a chatbox of a far left group in Al-Magrab. And he knew what the package was. A group of Ostmarker government officials, some of them high-ranking, who had fled Ostmark because they couldn’t accept that the national-syndicalist regime had been replaced with a democratic government. This group fled Ostmark after the December coup failed. They didn’t travel directly to Al-Magrab, but went there via several other countries. And all had a link to Bastian.
Ten years ago, he was a member of a group of antifascist people. When they protested against a far right protest, Bastian met his boyfriend Christoph. But then he was bashed up by a group of far right persons, and needed a year to recover. In that year, he lost contact with his antifascist friends.

Then, out of the blue, they emerged again. In Al-Magrab. They had drifted away from their original ideals. OK, Bastian had drifted away from those ideas as well, but Bastian drifted to the political centre, while his friends drifted further to the left. Now they wanted to turn Al-Magrab into a national-syndicalist country. Something Bastian didn’t know yet.

Later today, he was asked to go to his superior, Ferdinand Strauss.explained to him: “Well, you alteady know some of the people we’re chasing in Al-Magrab. One of them is Jonas Barsano. The others are Lorenz Jörgens, Steffan Severin, Jupp Hancker, Sepp Fleischer, Roland Basper, Karl Helsling, Fritz Graf, Patrick Vetter, Arik Blumenthal and Erich Honseck.”
 

Eiffelland

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6 January 2021
Barqah, Eiffellandian Mandate Al-Magrab

Back on Eiffellandian soil. Well, at least on a soil under Eiffellandian rule. Still it felt like coming home. After so many years. He had to flee from Eiffelland, because the RND had discovered his ties to the far left scene in Eiffelland. That in itself was not a problem. The RND had no legal means to arrest him, and the information gathered about him could not be used in court for procedural reasons. OK, the RND had a licence to kill, but he was a man in the spotlights in those days. His position was such, that an assassination by the RND would not be a simple assassination but something close to a coup d’état.
It was not his first time in Barqah. Actually, during the zeroes, he traveled to Al-Magrab seven times. But that didn’t lead to him knowing the city. Indeed, he did notice that Barqah had changed since 2009, but still he didn’t know the city. How could he have explored the city during his visits, given the fact that he always visited it as a government official?


18 June 2010
A village in Corrientes

The man lay down on the ground. Dead. That was easy. Easier than the former government official thought. But he was mainly surprised that he was still physically capable to do so. OK, in the 1970s, he secretly killed off several people. Actually, he was the one who killed the banker Oscar Fuger back in 1976. But that was never discovered. Most people of the terrorist group responsible for that were caught, but exactly the murderers themselves were not. The predecessor of the RND went after them though, and all were killed. All but one.
It was good that he used a fake identity in that group. And it was good that he joined that group on his own. None of his friends knew about it. None of his family knew about it. He even never told anybody that once he belonged to the Rote Befreiungsarmee. Nobody knew about it. The RND was still looking for somebody calling himself Stephan Schreiner; it was already known that “Stephan Schreiner” was a fake name, taken from somebody who died with his family in a car accident in 1961. His friends might have noticed that “Stephan Schreiner” looked a lot like him, but that didn’t matter. He had already de-registered himself on university; after the murder, he went on a long vacation in Hymiar (avoiding Al-Magrab), returned home two years later and registered himself on a different university on the other side of the country. At that moment, the face of “Stephan Schreiner” had been forgotten by the public. And also by the customs he passed when entering Eiffelland again.
Now he had to do this trick again, but for a much longer period of time. He had been on prime time television for seven years. The whole world knew his face, and would remember it for a very long time. Chances were high that he would never be able to use his real name again. So he hi-jacked the identity of a lonesome Eiffellandian who left the country without a trace after he lost his family in a train accident. From now on, his name would be Ignaz Ullmann, born 29 July 1958. He knew someone who could make a good fake passport on this name.
He made sure that Ignaz’s house looked like the man was on a trip, packed Ignaz’s corpse and clothes into Ignaz’s SUV, and drove to his own house. There he dissolved Ignaz’s corpse in strong acids, and sold Ignaz’s car to a scrapper.

After that, former Chancellor of Eiffelland and former political leader of Eiffelland’s sociodemocratic party SPE Horst Jörgens became Ignaz Ullmann.
 

Eiffelland

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The 2010s

How does a leftwing revolutionary finance himself before and during the revolution? The most common answer to that is drug trafficking. That was the way the Rote Befreiungsarmee financed itself. Horst Jörgens was familiar with it. Actually, he never stopped his activities in drug traficking. During his period in the government, he did everything he could to optimise the business. He made sure that the police caught competing gangs and stayed away from the trafickers working for his far left group. Without anyone realising it, he governed over a chancellor usually does not govern: The drugs scene. It all belonged to his plan to forward the revolution. A plan that needed money. And back in 2010 a plan that was backed with lots of money.
But then the Von Seydewitz administration, a coaltion consisting of the christiandemocrats (who were completely fed up with Jörgens and the sociodemocrats) and the market liberals (who were keen on taking over the Sociodemocrat’s position in the government after seven years in the opposition), came into power. Von Seydewitz unleashed the police, the public prosecutors and the RND against drug traficking. The minimum punishments for drug-related crimes were increased, more and more people involved in drug traficking were arrested and convicted to long-lasting imprisonments, and the people who could not be acted against by legal means were acted against by illegal means. The number of deadly accidents increased, according to the credo “make it look like an accident”. The number of people who simply disappeared increased. Foreigners were not spared. The only idea that was not implemented in the war on drugs, was the idea to ignite gang wars so that the crooks would kill each other; that was deemed too dangerous.
Von Seydewitz’s war on drugs was dirty, but in one ways also effective: The money flow of the Rote Befreiungsarmee dried up. The RND not only knew that Jörgens was involved in the far left scene, but also knew about Jörgens’s role in drug traficking. Von Seydewitz’s aim with his war on drugs was to dry up Jörgens’s money flow.
Another effect of Von Seydewitz’s war on drugs was an increase in the number of forced labourers in the coal mines, but that was only bycatch. And it was not Von Seydewitz’s last achievement in the Jörgens case. The Eiffellandian government had successfully managed to cover up all available information that somebody as high as the Chancellor had committed treason.
 

Eiffelland

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6 February 2021
Barqah, Eiffellandian Mandate Al-Magrab

Kurzenberg was sitting in a hotel room in a four-star hotel. He had checked the room for bugs and cameras. It was clean. The curtains were closed. Kurzenberg had taken a portable music player with him. The external harddisk attached to it contained an eight-hour trance mix to disturb directional microphones or any bugging device that had been missed.
Kurzenberg waited for Arik Blumenthal, a former friend of Bastian Holzbrenner who had radicalized leftward but had been recruited as an informant for the RND about a month ago. Bastian’s former friends from that small antifascist group had moved to Al-Magrab to make their ideals reality here, but Arik Blumenthal had started to regret the move. And not only Arik. Also Sepp Fleischer and Patrick Vetter wanted out. Kurzenberg had convinced all three to stay in and spy for him. Today he received Arik Blumenthal, the only Jew in the group.

Arik Blumenthal entered the lobby of the hotel. He was wearing a suit. He went to the reception desk and said in English to one of the receptionists: “Good afternoon, I am Mirko Müller. I have an appointment with Dr. A. Moers.” The receptionist looked up Dr. A. Moers, saw that he was in room 214, and typed this room number into her telephone.

The telephone rang in room 214. The call was pushed through to Kurzenberg’s room.
“Moers.”
“Good afternoon, Dr. Moers, Mr. Müller has arrived. Shall I send him to you?” the receptionist said.
“No, thank you, I will come down myself to receive him. I will be in the lobby in two minutes,” Hoffmann said. Then he took his telephone and sent an SMS to somebody in the lobby. After that, he went downstairs to collect Arik.

Back in the room, they started to talk while the music was still playing.
“I took some pictures of the people who fled from Ostmark. Here is my handy,” Arik said.
“Thank you,” Kurzenberg said. He took the phone and started to sweep. “Which ones are from the six people from Ostmark?”
Arik pointed them out. Kurzenberg copied the pictures over to another device through a safe connection. He also copied some more pictures.
“Did you manage to find out who they are?” Kurzenberg asked.
“I only heard first names,” Arik said. “Simone, Anke, Egon, Jens, Herrmann and Ignaz. And I have a bit of a strange feeling about Ignaz. I have the feeling that I saw his face before. Furthermore, he doesn’t speak German with an Ostmarker accent, but with an Eiffellandian accent. He also sometimes uses Spanish words. What I understood up to now, is that he had lived in Corrientes for 15 years before he moved to Ostmark to support the Grasserist revolution.”
“Did you find out anything more?” Kurzenberg asked. “Anything about why they moved to Al-Magrab? I mean, it can be that they fled from Ostmark because they did some things that could lead to trials, and maybe they took a sack of money with them, in wichever way they managed to grab or earn it, and maybe that sack of money is the reason why they could have to stand trial, but why didn’t they take the opportunity to live a calm life? Why did they connect with you? They must have more plans.”
“Sorry, Dr. Moers, but I’m not that far yet,” Arik said.
“No problem, but try to find that out,” Kurzenberg said. “I will let you know the details of our next meeting over the usual way.”

Kurzenberg had similar meetings with Sepp Fleischer and Patrick Vetter. All three got the task to find out what the Ostmark Six wanted.
 
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