Hashira-jima no kuni
“Let every man do his utmost duty.”
Capital: Hashirajima (city-state)
Largest District: Mutsu
Official language: Japanese
- <1% Kanmusu ("Ship-girl/Fleet Daughter")
- Unknown number of Equipment Fairy
Government: Unitary Tricameral Parliamentary Republic
- Commander-in-Chief: Admiral Yamato
- Prime Minister: Admiral Ichiro Goto
Legislature: National Diet
- Upper House (Human): Admiralty Board
- Upper House (Kanmusu): Fleet Board
- Lower House: House of Representatives
- National Foundation Day: November 26, 1941
- Total: 101.35 km2 (39.13 sq mi)
- Hashira Island: 3.12 km2 (1.20 sq mi)
Population: 7,033,894 (2020 census)
Highest elevation: Mt. Kinzō - 290 m (950 ft)
Lowest elevation: 0 m (0 ft)
Currency: Yen (¥) / En 円 (JPY)
Time zone: JST (UTC+9)
- Summer (DST): Not observed (UTC+9)
Era yy年m月d日 (CE−1988)
Drives on the: left
Calling code: +84
ISO 3166 code: HS
Internet TLD: .hs
Hashirajima (柱島国 Hashira-jima no kuni) is a sovereign city-state located on the eponymous island within southern Hiroshima Bay of the Inland Sea in Japan. Geographically a part of the Kutsuna Islands within the Bōyo Islands group, it was formerly under the adminstration of Yamaguchi Prefecture.
The nation covers 964.12 square kilometres (372.25 sq mi) in total, comprising the 3.12 square kilometres (1.20 sq mi) of Hashira Island proper as well as the sizeable area of water surrounding the islands where extensive floating development have taken place. Hashirajima main commercial port, naval facilities, and most of its residential and business areas as well as government agency headquarters are located on the floating districts, with the small land-based Kaga District mostly used for meteorological research.
Since the end of World War II, Hashirajima has adopted a formal constitution as a unitary tricameral republic, with a Commander-in-Chief and a semi-elected legislature called the Hashirajima Diet. Due to the small citizen population, legislators and ministers often hold concurrent military appointments, although the heads of the two armed forces services as well as the Chief of General Staff, the Marshal-Admiral (元帥海軍大将 gensui-kaigun-taishō) or Marshal-General (元帥陸軍大将 gensui-rikugun-taishō), are prohibited from holding positions in the Diet.
1.1 Feudal era
1.2 Early modern era
1.3 Secession era
1.4 Fleet Daughters
1.5 Late-WWII to post-war
1.5 Modern era
3.3 Foreign relations
5.1 Economic history
6 Science and technology
6.1 Naval engineering
7.3 Water supply and sanitation
During Japan's feudal era, one characterised by the emergence and dominance of a ruling class of warriors, the samurai, Hashirajima was largely uninvolved. However, the Inland Sea which it was located in was a major transport line for between Japan's coastal areas, as well as between Japan and other nations.
As a result of the importance of water traffic, regional powers historically possessed naval capabilities.
After the Meiji Restoration, the Inland Sea's naval history was continued with the creation of Kure Naval District, one of the four main administrative districts of the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN).
Hashirajima, the island, was associated with the surrounding Hashirajima Anchoring Area. Located 30–40 km south of the naval base at Kure, Hiroshima, warships of the Imperial Japanese Navy that did not need dock repairs would anchor at Hashirajima and it was also used as a staging area before fleet departures.
When the Japanese Army invaded China, it was under protestation of the then-Deputy Naval Minister Isoroku Yamamoto, who opposed a Rome-Berlin-Tokyo treaty. Soon after, Admiral Yamamoto was promoted to Marshal-Admiral, and reassigned to sea as the Commander-in-Chief of the Combined Fleet.
While tasked with planning the opening attack against the US, Yamamato was aware of the growing discontent amongst his subordinate flag officers, as well as the futility of his efforts in the long run. As such, he held discussions in private with Emperor Shōwa. With His Majesty's approval after long talks, he disseminated orders behind the back of the government for his admirals to "do what (they) felt was right". In rapid succession, the Navy high command agreed to "secede" their respective commands from the Empire, knowing that they would remain in the Emperor's good graces.
Shortly after the departure of the Striking Force (Kido Butai) on November 26, 1941, the carrier task force broke apart and headed for the separate headquarters of the four naval districts, Vice-Admiral Chūichi Nagumo and his 1st Carrier Division (1st CarDiv) for their assigned base, Kure.
At Kure Naval Arsenal, Admiral Soemu Toyoda was alerted when the 1st CarDiv entered port, and as agreed upon, raised the newly altered naval ensign on the main flagpole, signalling his secession. Under his orders, non-navy personnel were removed from the base, and as a precaution that turned out to be well-founded, he began to move base operations and assets to Hashirajima.
Kure Naval Arsenal was bombarded by Army air groups before Toyoda could leave and left over half of the Naval District command structure dead. The survivors, led by then Vice-Admiral Chuichi Nagumo, could only watch from their new island base.
Shortly after the concerted secession of all the Empire's naval assets, the Emperor declared each district self-governing Provinces, tasked with defending the Empire in case of attack on the home islands.
In honour of the death of their Commander-in-Chief Admiral Toyoda, the survivors of Kure Naval District elected to take the name Hashirajima. In the words of Vice-Admiral Nagumo, "Kure died with the Commander-in-Chief, and we, the survivors, can do better than to sully his sacrifice."
The Army's second-rate naval assets, built up in a hurry along the course of the war, meant that the war it subsequently declared against the US after the Navy's secession quickly ended with Japan's defeat after the fall of the atomic bombs. Just before the surrender documents were signed, however, the Emperor granted independence to the seceded Naval districts, by then long-since raised to independent protectorate status.
- Main Article: Kanmusu of Hashirajima
Due to its original population consisting almost solely of Naval military personnel, and hence having an overwhelming male population, Hashirajima's population quickly dwindled, and would have completely disappeared if not for the musing of the chief engineer and the head priest of the local Shinto shrine.
As a nation founded on the back of a naval organisation, Hashirajima found itself innundated with military hardware, and as an anchorage historically, this problem was compounded by the other independent former naval districts relegating their outdated vessels to the fledging island nation. So, the two individuals decided to "personify" the nation's overinflated historical fleet (by then long replaced by new vessels), with a ritual devised with reference to ancient folklore about Tsukumogami (付喪神 or つくも, "Tool kami").
It was unclear as to the actual details of the events leading up to the implementation of the ritual, but in the early days of 1993, a young woman who claimed to be IJN Mutsu, which was sunk in the early days of the war by a turret explosion, appeared on the shore of the island. The recently raised battleship wreck, a monument to the fledgling days of the young nation, was reported missing. More such individuals soon turned out, all female but vastly varied in appearance and other personal characteristics. Upon verification with the mysteriously disappearing vessels, the then Commander-in-Chief, the ageing Admiral Harutaka Goto accepted them as citizens.
As it turns out, due to some innate biological incompatibility between the new arrivals and humans, this solution never did solve Hashirajima's population problems, and they had to turn to immigrants. The newly named "kanmusu" eventually, due to their nigh immortality, formed an independent legislative body in an oversight role, the Fleet Board, to compliment the existing Upper House of the Diet, the Admiralty Board.
Hashirajima, driven by military need, rapidly developed a robust heavy industry to supply its naval operations. As such, by the end of the war, it was one of the major suppliers of precision engineering products to mainland Japan.
However, the means by which the war ended abruptly ended this vital trade arrangement. Over the following decades, Hashirajima slowly developed its other industries, as well as diplomatic ties with other nations. Trade with Japan has also rose, reaching close to wartime volumes, with Japan's own economic recovery.
Hashirajima comprises a single island, Hashira Island. There are two man-made connections to Japan: the Kurahashi-Hashira Causeway in the north to Hiroshima Prefecture, and the Yashiro-Hashira Bridge in the south to Yamaguchi Prefecture. The highest natural point is Mt. Kinzō at 290 m (950 ft).
While land reclamation to increase the amount of space for infrastructure have been floated, the idea was rejected due to the sheer number of sea lanes in the surrounding waters. Instead, technology from the Netherlands was used to create semi-mobile floating "districts" in the mid-to-late 1990s, serving the role of traditional land reclamation.
Urbanisation resulted in the loss of more than 95% of Hashira Island's historical forests, though areas around shrines remain preserved for religious as well as ecological reasons.
Hashirajima, as with the rest of the Inland Sea region, is sheltered from seasonal winds by the mountains of the Chūgoku and Shikoku regions, bringing mild weather year-round. It experiences stable year-round temperature and relatively low rainfall levels.
Hashirajima is a parliamentary republic with a tricameral parliamentary government representing districts and the Commander-in-Chief as the head of state. The Commander-in-Chief is selected by the incumbent, and has veto powers over a specific set of executive decisions, such as the use of the national reserves and the appointment of judges, but otherwise occupies a largely ceremonial post. However, the Commander-in-Chief is the supreme commander of the Hashirajima Armed Forces, and has the highest authority in the military chain of command with the Prime Minister in an advisory role.
Hashirajima's legislative organ is the Hashirajima Diet, seated at the Hashirajima Anchorage Administrative Headquarters in Yamato District. The Diet is a tricameral body, consisting of a lower House of Representative with 35 seats, elected by popular vote every four years or when dissolved, and two upper houses with somewhat limited powers, the Admiralty Board that represents the human population and the Fleet Board that represents the kanmusu population, both with eight seats each. Both upper houses are selected by the Commander-in-Chief. By convention, the Admiralty Board comprises three commanders from Navy HQ formations, as well as the commanders of the Home Fleet and the four Standing Fleets. The Fleet Board comprises the flagship commanding the Combined Fleet and the flagships of its component fleets. There is universal suffrage for adults over 18 years of age, with a secret ballot for all elected offices. The House of Representatives is currently a balanced parliament led by the nationalist conservative Hashirajima Nationalist Party with the liberal Progress Party as the main opposition party. The Hashirajima Nationalist Party which has enjoyed continuous electoral success since its founding in the late 1990s, though it had never achieved absolute majority in its history. As of 2020, it holds 19 seats, with the Progress Party holding 14 and the Communist Party holding 2.
The Prime Minister of Hashirajima is the head of government, and is appointed by the Commander-in-Chief after being designated by the Diet from among the House of Representatives. The Prime Minister is the head of the Cabinet, and appoints the Ministers that make up the Cabinet (also from the House of Representatives). The current Prime Minister is Ichiro Goto, who is the country's 20th prime minister. Although the Prime Minister is formally appointed by the Commander-in-Chief, the Constitution of Hashirajima explicitly requires the Commander-in-Chief to appoint whoever is designated by the Diet.
Hashirajima's legal system is heavily influence by Japan's legal system after the nation's independence, though it is fundamentally based on the military laws, rules, and regulations of the Imperial Japanese Navy. Changes were gradually made to account for the then-growing civilian population, and new laws were added as the country developed. Statutory law originate from the legislature, and has the rubber stamp of the Commander-in-Chief. Hashirajima's court system is divided into three basic tiers: the Supreme Court, the four High Courts, and the 10 District Courts.
Hashirajima consists of 10 districts, which function as electoral divisions rather than administrative divisions due to the small size of Hashirajima as a whole. Historically, each district was anchored to, and hence named after, a monument ship of the appropriate size, though the disappearance of the ships after the kanmusu were summoned resulted in them being anchored to each other on a semipermanent basis.
The list of districts, the number of seats each district hold in the House of Representatives, and the current party representing each district is as follows:
Fusou District - 3 (PP)
Yamashiro District - 3 (PP)
Ise District - 3 (PP)
Hyuuga District - 3 (HNP)
Nagato District - 5 (HNP)
Mutsu District - 5 (HNP)
Yamato District - 5 (PP)
Musashi District - 5 (HNP)
Kaga District - 1 (HNP)
Shinano District - 2 (CP)
(HNP - Hashirajima Nationalist Party; PP - Progress Party; CP - Communist Party)
Hashirajima has diplomatic relations with a large number of independent nations, and is a recent member of the WA. Of note, Hashirajima has very close ties with Japan, and both nations signed a military alliance shortly after WWII. Hashirajima relies heavily on Japanese imports due to its small size and hence production capacity, and has been committed to defending the country.
- Main Article: Hashirajima Armed Forces
The Hashirajima Armed Forces (HAF) may be considered one of the most technologically advanced military in East Asia, comparable to Japan, with one of the highest military expenditure relative to GDP (5.5%) in the world. Often considered a "mirror" to the Japan Self-Defence Forces (JSDF), the country's military focuses heavily in warfighting and force-projection capability as part of the nation's traditional role as one of Japan's lines of defence. It comprises only two branches, the Hashirajima Army and Hashirajima Navy, lacking an independent air force unlike most modern militaries.
Due to the circumstances under which Hashirajima was formed, the nation was placed in a unique position with regards to military affairs immediately after its separation from Japan. It had both a vast experience to draw upon, as well as an immediate threat it was forced to face. This was coupled with a lopsided pool of resources it could draw upon that was almost entirely comprised of naval assets. As such, till after WWII one of Hashirajima's main focus was to build up land-combat capacity, which was then seen as a potentially fatal deficit. Recognising that it lacks the manpower to match most of its regional rivals, Hashirajima approaches this issue with a combination of a conscription and reserve service (liable for all citizens aged 18 and above) that is modeled after Israel's own, and heavy use of technology as a force multiplier. It maintains strong ties with Japan, and is one of the few (if not only) nations permitted to purchase Japanese armaments under special allowances from Japan's ban on arms exports.
Part 5 of Hashirajima's Constitution explicitly affirms the nation's right to declare war and demanded a level of warfighting capability that is sufficient to not only ensure Hashirajima's defence, but also that of Japan. While no longer considered in effect after their formal independence from Japan shortly before Japan's surrender at the end of WWII, it is implicitly recognised as an informal guideline to Hashirajima's military doctrine. This remains a minor source of contention for many former Allied nations, who view Hashirajima as an aggressor that was not penalised for their actions during the war. Officially, the government insists that Hashirajima was drawn into the war in aid of Japan, as it was obliged to come to Japan's defence in the face of external threats, and as such should not be considered an aggressor.
Most of the HAF's operations today consists of exercises, both internal and with other nations. It holds regular joint exercises with the JSDF, and is also a regular participant in RIMPAC maritime exercises. On top of that, the HAF also engages itself in disaster relief operations. While the nation has yet to see a major demand in this area, the military commonly provides aid to Japan due to its close proximity. In recent years, the HAF has seen an increasing number of overseas deployments driven by the military capability it had recovered since the war, comprising mostly of international peacekeeping operations. Most of the time, it acts as an informal extension of the JSDF, having more leeway when operating outside Japan's borders. It also conducts its own overseas operations worldwide, mostly involving anti-piracy operations.
The current political landscape in the region has driven the HAF to expand its scope of operations, and it has taken to mimicking the US' former model of conducting Freedom of Navigation patrols in the South China Sea, within maritime territory involved in Japan's territorial disputes with China. This change in operation demand have also driven recent acquisitions in terms of naval assets, most notably a new class of aircraft carriers.
When Hashirajima first became self-governing, the government of that time (comprising the surviving high command of Kure Naval District) saw little need in developing the necessary frameworks for a civilian nation due to the far more pressing need of impending war against the US. As such, when the nation first became independent, it had depended heavily on the education provided by Japan, with pre-university students either home-schooled or attending schools in the neighbouring Yamaguchi, Hiroshima, or Ehime Prefectures.
An education system was quickly set up, which is based heavily on Japan's system comprising elementary schools, junior high schools, high schools, and other institutions. Education was made compulsory up to junior high school level under the Education and Schools Act 1945, administered by the then-newly established Ministry of Culture, Education, Science and Technology. Today, almost all children continue their education at a three-year senior high school.
Hashirajima has a single institution of higher learning, the University of Hashirajima located at Hyuuga District. Established in 1994 from civilian offshoots of various military training institutes to cope with anticipated increase in demand for certain professions, it expanded rapidly with help from a partnership with the University of Tokyo, and became a full-fledged university two years later in 1996.
Hashirajiman culture is often considered to have retained most of its Japanese roots. Both share many similarities, such as architecture, art, music, and philosophy. However, there is an obvious militaristic slant, due to the nation's origin as a military entity. Compared to mainstream Japanese styles, Hashirajiman designs tend towards practicality and functionality.
Hashirajiman cuisine is very similar to Japanese cuisine, with the same emphasis on the typical staples of rice and noodles, soup, and local ingredients. However, bearing an origin that stems from ship-board fare, it is much simpler, and also places more emphasis on ingredients that are less perishable. In keeping with Japanese Navy tradition, Japanese curry has an important place in Hashirajiman cuisine, and many households would partake in the dish on Fridays.
Hashirajima shares several official national holidays with Japan, stemming from their shared history. However, several are unique to the nation, and often originate from its military history. The nation celebrates both Marshal-Admiral Tōgō Heihachirō's birthday on January 27, in commemoration of its history as part of the IJN, and Founder's Day on May 22, the birthday of Commander-in-Chief Admiral Soemu Toyoda.
The national holidays in Hashirajima are New Year's Day on January 1, Coming of Age Day on Second Monday of January, Marshal-Admiral Day on January 27, National Foundation Day on April 28, Vernal Equinox Day on March 20 or 21, Shōwa Day on April 29, Greenery Day on May 4, Children's Day on May 5, Founder's Day on May 22, Marine Day on Third Monday of July Respect for the Aged Day on Third Monday of September, Autumnal Equinox on September 23 or 24, Labour Thanksgiving Day on November 23, The Emperor's Birthday on December 23.
Television and newspaper take an important role in Hashirajiman mass media, with significant contribution from radio.
There's two daily newspapers, the Hashirajima Times and the Hashira Daily. The domestic television network, Hashira Television (HTV) originated from the local radio station, which in turn came about from the regular broadcasts from the local headquarters during the nation's days as a military facility. Most television shows watched by Hashirajimans are foreign networks.
Magazines are generally foreign publications, except for a handful of monthlies from various non-governmental organisations and the military's internal lifestyle publication.