1685 Aldurian coup d'état
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The 1685 Aldurian coup d'état began on 12.VII.1685 AN, when the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff César Puig led a broad political coalition that included members of all political parties to remove President Gerhardt Eugen Seydlitz and Prime Minister Kylian Mbappé from power and suspended the Constitution of Alduria. The move came after the political upheaval brought by the assasination of Prime Minister Marco Zimmer and the continued inability of all levels of government to react or even move quickly to reassure the country and maintain order. The assassination led to weeks to widespread national protests and memorial vigils, with protesters calling for the military to remove the government and guide the country to a new democratic national settlement.
The military arrested Seydlitz, Mbappé, and several other political leaders and declared former President Alejandro Campos as the interim president of Alduria. The announcement was followed by demonstrations and clashes between supporters and opponents of the coup throughout the country.
During the year 1680 AN, the internal security situation in Alduria began to rapidly degrade as a series of terrorist attacks by Zurvanite extremists on Nazarene churches led to serious civil unrest. The attacks towards the Prosperity for All Megachurch of Plenty were particularly deadly, motivated by the extreme rhetoric from the Euran Destiny Party and leaders of Zurvanite congregations throughout the country. These attacks soon spread to other places in Alduria. To the surprise of most Aldurians, the government of President Gerhardt Eugen Seydlitz and Prime Minister Alfonso Velez never mobilized security forces nor led any efforts to stabilize the country and restore order. The terror campaign continued with the government remaining silent to the carnage.
The silence and inaction from both Seydlitz and Velez led to mass protests across the country, further destabilizing Alduria. The rallies and protests soon began to take up causes beyond ending terrorism, taking up the ongoing public service failures that led to a nationwide education and health care crisis. The Aldurian ambassador to Constancia, Felipe Garfield, resigned from his post in protest to the government's inaction. He was later joined by several officials and diplomats across the Aldurian government. The protests escalated into calls for Velez and Seydlitz both to resign. Counterprotests from Alduria's Babhki community soon sprang up, ripping up pictures of Seylitz and Velez and burning them in effigy. Whenever these dueling protests met, violence often ensued that resulted in even more death, motivating more attacks from emboldened Zurvanite extremists upon Nazarene congregations.
Realizing that public support was rapidly eroding, the Velez government started to mobilize resources to improve security across Alduria by mid-1681 AN, months after the violence began. The government was sustained by a coalition with the leftist Democratic Socialist Party, led by Marco Zimmer. Tensions inside the coalition between a decidedly anti-gun, pro-public services Zimmer and a pro-gun and anti-public services Velez led to Zimmer withdrawing from the coalition in late 1681 AN, paving the way for early parliamentary elections in 1682 AN.
The contentious early election resulted in a narrow victory for the Democratic Socialist Party and Marco Zimmer became Prime Minister, opting to govern in a minority government. The move was widely panned by many Aldurians who believed the minority government would further exacerbate the nation's instability. Under Zimmer's government, the Democratic Socialists found it incredibly difficult to pass any of their promised agenda items, such as the nationalization of various economic sectors such as health care. This paralyzed the government and led to a series of measures aimed at shoring up the economy and reassuring investors that Zimmer would consider business concerns in his policy-making. Overall, during the beginning of Zimmer's term, trade increased and unemployment started to drop. However, Zimmer's reforms did not relieve the underlying weaknesses and instead gave the appearance of a more stable democracy taking root in Alduria.
Meanwhile, the wave of violence continued as Aldurian politicians focused instead on cobbling together governments and legislative measures to stabilize the markets. Soon Zimmer turned his attention towards addressing the growing health care and education crises in Alduria, but could not easily find any allies to work within Parliament from any of the other parties. By the end of 1683 AN, failing to find any compromise, his ambitious socialist agenda was pretty much dead in the water.
The removal of Seydlitz and Mbappé from office by the coalition was the result of a military coup d'état following years of protests that were instigated by popular frustration with the country's continued internal security problems, corruption, the persistent failure of the national education and health care systems, government neglect, and persistent economic issues.
Some of the issues that are considered the causes of the later removal of Seydlitz and Mbappé include:
- Deep-seated government paralysis in the face of chronically unaddressed and mounting national issues.
- The assassination of Marco Zimmer by a right-wing extremist further exacerbated political instability. Zimmer was succeeded by Kylian Mbappé, a leader that was generally seen by many as a weak and ineffectual. After the assassination, he recommended to President Seydlitz that a general election be called at a time where authorities could no longer guarantee a safe election for voters.
- The steep degradation of the internal security situation in the country.
- The continued degradation of national security along with national governmental paralysis had begun to impact the economy, with the markets experiencing heavy losses, mass layoffs leading to higher unemployment, and businesses seeking bankruptcy protection.
- National crises in education and health care leading to extremely disparate results, reduced access to health and education, leading to depressed economic activity.
- Infiltration of Constancian security services in Alduria in an effort to surveil and monitor pro-democracy exile communities in Alduria.
- Proposed steep defense cuts by the Zimmer and Mbappé governments that the military argued would render Alduria unable to defend itself and meet its Raspur Pact commitments.
- Aldurian politics riven by an undercurrent of racial tensions between the settler majority and the Zurvanite minorities, played up by political candidates who seek to stoke tension and fear among voters in a way that benefits their candidacies.
- 13: General César Puig, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, announced over TV and radio that the "first Aldurian Republic is dissolved." Puig announced that President Syedlitz was arrested on charges of "corruption, neglect, and maladministration". Prime Minister Kylian Mbappé was also arrested under similar charges. Both were said to offer no resistance. Former President Alejandro Campos was installed as interim president, charged with forming a transitional technocratic government. Troops and tanks quickly surrounded important facilities around the country and martial law was instituted to secure national order. The announcement of the removal of Seydlitz and Mbappé were met with cheers and celebration from protesters across the country, with many politicians and regional leaders expressing their support for the coup.
- 14: The Pronunciamiento of Punta Santiago was published.