Zeitgeist Magazine's Utania This Week
February 25, 301 AP

Cyclone "Bayama" put Utania on full-civil-alert this week, when it threatened to build into a full Force 4 hurricane and strike the eastern coast of Utania and South Bay. Utania's hurricane-watch facility, HuMOC, raised the alarm on Thursday, putting civil defence authorities to the test in Lasanne and Nystonia states. The alarm was down-graded on Saturday when a high-pressure system crossed the country and swept the cyclone further out to sea.

President Okarvits partially backed down from the Û27bn investment in military hardware, putting the expenditure officially "on hold" on Tuesday. It brings to an end the threat to overturn the President's executive order, effectively undermining his authority. Parliamentary MPs opposed to the expenditure also backed down from their threat to block other Military reforms, and would "consider carefully" the final deal.

The President's backdown has not pleased the country's Liberal Nationalist Party, nor the Utani-Saedaj Defence Minister, Samuel Artos, who publicly condemned the actions of the "Peace Bloc", the twenty-plus MPs who opposed the expenditure.

In a completely unrelated event, the Peacekeeping (Dignania) Mission Office released the reports on the deaths of three Utanian servicemen in Dignania. One was killed in a firefight with teenage rebels in a village behind the lines, while the other two were killed by a mortor during an attack on Peacekeepers Regimental HQ, during the communist counter-offensive and massive Allied retreat in late December, that has lead to the current peacetalks. President Okarvits held a press conference to honour those men on Monday.

The race for the Conservative Party nomination for the Presidency, for January elections, began in earnest this week with a brutal contest for the Nystonia state party Chairmanship. Allies of the two main unannounced-candidates, Thomas Kemp MP and Governor Edward Hope, faced off and Kemp's chosen nominee won the chairmanship. The Conservative Party Presidential Candidate is considered the second-most likely, after current President Okarvits, to win the Presidency over all other parties' nominees. At this stage, it appears Kemp is storming ahead in polls.

The Belson Corporation and President's trade Minister, Arthur Reagan MP, secured a Û2.3bn (C767m) export deal to the Greater Zartanian Empire for fruits and vegetables, including bananas, pineapples, mangoes, grapes and wild maizes. In a separate deal, the Zartanians are looking to import over Û1.6bn (C533m) in Utanian cotton. The four billion pund export is the single largest export agreement of Utanian produce since independence, but represents less than 8% of total Utanian agricultural exports.

A multi-million pund deal is rumoured to be in the wings for Jagged Blue, the Savaj Netopik ISP subsiduary, to be the exclusive host for a large organisation. The rumour gained strength when the company President, James Angorit, denied there would be lay-offs within the company, "instead a significant expansion".

Utanian Vexgame officials were criticised for failing to provide a winter games team for the forthcoming Sanx games by the deadline Friday by sports writers and magazines nationwide, but remain unrepentant, citing their limited funds and limited number of events Utanians would compete in. Atheletes are also unimpressed saying they had been training hard for this event only to be "stabbed in the back".

The case of former Guwimithian Lord-Protector Sergei Dosansky continued this week in the federal court in Utan Krysaror with application's from Mr Dosansky lawyers specifying the exact tracts of territory sought by the former Tsarist Courtier. At this stage, despite public opposition to the legal moves, the government has not signalled it will oppose the case except in court.

President Kramer won reelection in Davenport after a tight election, and his Progressive Party won the most seats (7) in the 21-seat Council, making likely a Progressive-Green government, although in a coalition with Franch-speaking separatists. Kramer has indicated a desire to expand on Davenport's international focus, particularly toward Dignania.

After significant international criticism for their anti-Mounist rhetoric, the Theocratic government of Solimar said it would "investigate properly" and capture those responsible. The "Sons of Korhol", an anti-religion terrorist group, have claimed responsibility.

Red Sky Lakes has declared independence as "Abaco" from the chaos that is Northern Gronk. This comes merely weeks after the UNV rejected an application by the Kingdom of Elafites and Zufites to take control of a small slice of the Red Sky Lakes region which is occupied by EZO emigrants. Political analysts claim UNV officials obviously knew the Abaco declaration was forthcoming.

©Zeitgeist Magazine, 301 AP.

©Mike Ham, 2001. All rights reserved. No reproduction without, at least, tacit approval. ;-)