by Max Barry

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by The Regional Nation of The Northern Light. . 658 reads.

On The Aurora Alliance

On The Aurora Alliance

A month since The South Pacific expressed its sincere apology and acknowledged the wrong it did in allowing its Minister of Foreign Affairs to extort The North Pacific's previous delegate, we have been given another apology from the same Prime Minister, this time for inviting that very same official back into their government. This is the same official who, according to The South Pacific's government, was supposedly primarily responsible for the rapid deterioration of relations between our regions and with other major defender regions. To say we were surprised and dismayed by this development would be an understatement. Many people, in our region and neighboring regions alike, wished for the recent aggression against our previous delegate to be the end of the treaty, and such an offense was certainly worth reconsideration of the treaty. Nevertheless, we worked hard to find common ground and stay committed to the alliance. TNP agreed to make the effort, despite the severe blow to our trust and our pride, and the humiliation that resulted. Against the odds in those hectic April days, we succeeded. Ultimately our citizens agreed to move forward, and dropped the insistence that the treaty be terminated, opting to wait and see. But TNP deserved fair and appropriate action, and with that in mind I made a promise to my region. We would take TSP at their word that they regretted what happened and would demonstrate this through their interactions with us and their subsequent actions, but we would carefully evaluate things and would not allow TSP to make light of this reconciliation. Ever since we came to an understanding with TSP, my government has honored that promise. We have taken their words seriously and we have judged their subsequent actions by that standard. I promised we would hold them accountable if they did not live up to their words, and that is why we have reached this point.

Before I continue, I need to straighten a few things out, because discourse on this topic has taken many wild turns and we all need to be aware of some basic facts about this subject. We recognize that TSP feels it had to bring HumanSanity back to their government, due to the lack of viable alternatives. We understand that this role is not a Foreign Affairs role but is concerned with domestic policy. And we do not expect TSP to make personnel decisions based on how we feel about them, nor do we expect to have veto authority over those picks. We believe the Prime Minister is sincere and intends to continue the work to improve the relationship between our regions. We are fairly confident the most recent events were solely errors in judgment, careless moves but not malicious ones, and not an attempt to send us a message. And we accept that the overwhelming support for this appointment in TSP's legislature speaks to their confidence in the officer for that job, and not an opinion on us or an indictment of recent events. We also recognize that the most strident voices from TSP speaking publicly and with little rebuke from others in their region are not the only voices there, or representative of all in TSP.

But the facts remain: no effort was made to speak to us before this appointment was made, despite recent events, despite the predictable response from our citizens, and despite the obvious message it sends. This should have been a simple matter, particularly if TSP was indeed sincere in trying to mend fences. We appreciate that their Prime Minister recognizes the severity of this error, but the obliviousness previously displayed has reignited bad feelings in The North Pacific and prompted unrepentant and confrontational posturing and provocations from key members of TSP's community in public, with not nearly enough interest on the part of their government in addressing it. These recent events and how they have been handled have not inspired confidence in TNP?s community. Actions speak louder than all the nicest words that could be expressed, and TSP has either taken the wrong ones, or failed to take actions that would improve this situation. TNP has been patient and extended the benefit of the doubt, but that patience has its limits, and our community has doubts that are anything but beneficial.

Our regions have had a strong relationship for over a decade. There have been challenges, hard feelings, and clearly in some cases resentment. At several points along the way the alliance has been tested to its breaking point, but it always held. It is not an exaggeration to say that there are individuals in both regions who would rather see the end of this alliance. Many of these individuals never believed in the compatibility of the two regions, or put strict adherence to ideology above all else. But some of them came to this point of view after the past trials that tested this alliance, as a result of past damage that has been done, and now they have been joined by those who have developed a fresh resentment from these latest events. That damage cannot be overlooked, and even though our respective governments are more than willing to continue working in partnership and find a way to move forward from this latest incident, we have concluded that there is nothing more that can be done. There are no magic words, and there is no correct sequence of events and performances that TSP's existing government can execute which our community would find sufficient to move forward with the alliance while the current government continues to serve in their roles. The fundamental trust in TSP that our community must have to move forward simply no longer exists. It must be rebuilt, and this requires not only further introspection and rectification from TSP's leadership, but also time and space to pause and reset so that the recent events will not define our relationship into the future.

With everything in mind, it would not be right to insist on this alliance without giving our citizens a chance to properly consider and recommit to it, which is why I am formally opening a discussion in the Regional Assembly on whether or not to repeal The Aurora Alliance.

The North Pacific cannot credibly maintain this alliance as the lone partner making an effort to sustain it. That requires more from The South Pacific. It requires more thought and responsibility than TSP's leadership has until recently been willing to put into this relationship, which means its officials must continue to make a good faith effort and be attentive to the very real concerns our citizens have when they make moves that may cause those concerns to be raised. It requires an honest appraisal of what has happened before, and a commitment to grow beyond the grudges and biases of the past, which means clear messaging from TSP's government that its loudest naysayers in their midst and the pessimism they preach do not speak for the region or represent its disposition toward the alliance. This is necessary not solely to win over our citizens voting on the treaty?s fate, but also, and especially, in the event the treaty survives that process. This will require actors on both sides to be cognizant of how words, promises and apologies cannot be followed by actions that contradict those words. Our alliance relies on trust in the other, and rebuilding that trust will take conscious, deliberate effort. I pledge that The North Pacific will strive to be worthy of that trust, as we have been so far. And if our community decides the time has come for this alliance to end, it is my hope that it will be ended only temporarily, and that one day we can reaffirm our commitment and reforge what was unfortunately lost in this difficult time.

Two of NationStates' oldest democracies will always have more in common than not. We will always have a relationship that is based on common bonds, shared history, and similar values. I believe that is even true in the case of ideology, even if one is firmly defender and the other is not. And I believe our relationship with TSP will withstand even these events. Even though we will not be able to closely cooperate with them for the foreseeable future, we continue to look forward to a future where we can comfortably move past this and strengthen our relationship. No matter what happens, The South Pacific will find a kindred spirit and friend in The North Pacific, and we will have a future, even if it takes a different form from what we have been used to for over a decade.


Delegate of The North Pacific