|Memory 118 Guide •|
Ancient Bolian mythology paints a rich, though harsh, portrait of the earliest ages of Bolarus IX. Some attribute this to the harsh conditions of the world and the desire of the early inhabitants to explain their place in it. Other historians point to the far-flung natures of many of the ancient tribes, as well as the nomadic subsistence patterns that kept them constantly in motion. Regardless of whether or not these tales are true, all Bolians know them well, and refer to them often as lessons or proverbs; none wishes to return to the racial and cultural divisiveness that marked the world through much of its history.
Perhaps the oldest of these legends tells the story of three brothers: Ki, Se, and Ra. In ancient times, the storms which raged across the planet were much worse than they are today, delivered by the ocean spirits to make the inhabitants strong. The brothers lived with their families on a small island in the midst of Lolsara, the Great Ocean. Their small island home was destroyed many times by the storms, and many times they rebuilt what they had lost. Finally, after a particularly bad storm, each had a vision of a better place, a promised land of deep forests and wide grasslands. Since none of them knew from where the dreams originated, they decided that each would set out in a different direction. They constructed three large sailing vessels and each set out with his family in search of the land of their visions.
Each of the brothers discovered one of the three continents of Bolarus IX and settled there. Thus were the First Tribes - Bol'se, Bol'ki, and Bol'ra - born, each concentrating on a different fundamental principle of Bolian thought or culture. However, the Bolians could not ignore their inherent wanderlust and seafaring natures, and each of the tribes continued its migrations, eventually expanding and settling on islands throughout the world. Whether or not the legend of the brothers is true, archaeological and historical evidence confirms a period of wholesale migration among the earliest Bolian peoples.
As these early migrations continued, the tribes began to encounter one another. While many of these meetings were peaceful and led to lasting alliances, others were not. Territorial wars were a common occurrence among the tribes; however, after several millennia of sporadic conflict, the desire for safety and mutual protection eventually led to the formation of several more substantial coalitions, largely divided along tribal lines. Open war and aggression were contrary to the most basic impulses of most Bolians, whose temperaments ran more toward cooperation and group advancement. As the population of Bolarus IX continued to grow and its societies continued to expand, the ongoing conflicts began to take their toll. It finally became apparent that peace was the only logical solution.
The loose alliances which followed the Great Migrations gradually led to the founding of three nation-states, named for the three earliest tribes of legend. These states grew quickly, propelled by the Bolians' natural affinity for cooperation and group synergies. Although the three states worked together and the cultural differences among them were largely superficial, each still considered itself somewhat superior to the others. This resulted primarily from each state's individual priorities and concentrations. Bol'ra was located in a region rich in mineral wealth and resources, and much of Bolarus' current mining and processing technologies took root during the early development of the nation. The first seafloor structures on Bolarus were the result of Bol'ra research. Bol'ki has always excelled at above-ground scientific and medical advancement, including the early breakthroughs which would eventually lead to the much-vaunted Bolian antigravity technology. In Bol'se, aesthetics and learning were the order of the day. Most of Bolarus' highly regarded academies and universities began there, as did a vibrant artistic community that continues to flourish today. Although past prejudices have been largely eradicated in the present day, some Bolians still cling to vestiges of their outdated national and tribal pride.
The Great Migrations and the subsequent conflicts mark a turbulent era in Bolian history. Although terrible in many ways, this period did result in a number of incredible technological and cultural breakthroughs for the world. As relations normalized among the new nation-states and a long period of growth and peace began, the respective governments vowed that they would never again return to the old ways. However, even as the leaders made these assertions, the young nations remained fundamentally divided in spirit. It would take an unlooked-for visitor from the stars to bring true unity to Bolarus IX.
During this era of peace, which lasted four hundred years, the Bolians developed early spaceflight and managed to explore much of their own solar system. They founded research colonies on two of the planets and were beginning experiments with warp technology when the first Iren and Uzor vessels arrived in the Bolarus system. Only slightly more advanced than the Bolians, the Iren and the Uzor dwelt in neighboring systems, and the two species had been at war with each other for decades. First Contact with the Iren occurred at the Ral'nar Colony on Bolarus VII. Since the colony was mainly composed of settlers and scientists from Bol'ki, the Bol'kirans immediately took the lead in the diplomatic overtures which followed. Contact with the Uzor occurred only a few weeks later, at the Bol'ra outpost on the moon of Rim. The small Uzor warship had apparently been following the earlier Iren vessel.
From the beginning, things did not progress well. They went smoothly with both the Iren and the Uzor, but dissension began almost immediately among the Bolian nations. After all, it appeared that Bol'ki and Bol'ra had allied themselves with long-time enemies. The ancient differences, the divergent national cultures, the first contacts with species on opposing sides in an interstellar war - each of these things contributed to a new philosophical rift which began to grow across Bolarus. The Bol'kirans assumed a proprietary stance toward the Iren, wishing to act as the designated representatives for all the nations of Bolarus IX, while the Bol'ra took a similar position with the Uzor. Each nation had something to gain by taking the diplomatic lead in relations with the aliens, whether these gains took the form of tangible technological benefits or tacit influence in planetary politics.
Relations among the nations began to stagnate when none could agree on a common course of action; to make matters worse, each nation had a different agenda with respect to the Iren and the Uzor, and to the resources the new species offered. The Bol'setu protested that this was unfair, and wished to establish a contact committee charged with carrying out all dealings with the aliens. When it appeared that this would not happen, Bol'se attempted to withdraw from contact with the other nations entirely, not wishing to be caught in the struggle which was sure to follow.
As time wore on, each nation began to deal with the aliens on its own terms, the previous spirit of cooperation a casualty of age-old national and tribal pride. The Bol'rabu wished to expand their knowledge of mineral processing and advanced metallurgy outside the Bolarus home system, and they began to exchange their own materials techniques for the more advanced spacecraft technology of the Uzor. The Bol'setu wished to remain neutral in the conflict they knew was coming, and after a final useless entreaty to their brethren, they retreated to their islands. The Bol'kirans saw this as an opportunity to expand their own developments in the areas of medical and antigravity research, exchanging their expertise in the former for new Iren techniques and insights into the latter. At every turn, members and researchers from each Bolian nation tried to sabotage the other's developing relations with the newcomers.
Finally, the day the Bol'setu had feared arrived - the Iren and the Uzor each asked their Bolian allies to join them in the war. The aliens desired the Bolian materials and antigravity technology, as well as the extensive resources of the Bolian homeworld. Each felt that control of Bolarus IX could represent the deciding factor in the war. By equipping and aiding their respective allies in a war for control of Bolarus IX itself, both the Iren and the Uzor felt that their own victory was at hand. Conquest of the Bolian homeworld had become a principal objective in each species' ongoing war effort, and vast military build-ups began in both Bol'ki and Bol'ra.
Bolarus IX had reached the verge of another large-scale conflict, despite the best efforts of individual Bolians to avert it. Although contrary to their nature as a species, most citizens did not consider the situation rationally. Rather, each state looked only at what it had gained from contact with the aliens, and lost when planetary relations deteriorated. Each felt that its security and sovereignty had been violated, and the nations blamed each other for this state of affairs. Leaders on both sides were blinded by the promises and poisoned words of their allies, and this blindness allowed ancient rivalries to surface once more.
Only the Bol'setu remained level-headed in the midst of the madness. They appealed to leaders from both opposing states to examine their actions carefully; they knew that both Bol'ra and Bol'ki were being given false information by their alien compatriots, and they pleaded to their former allies to see through these lies. It did no good. Although individual Bolians of all nations understood the importance of a communal work ethic and the unity it fostered, in a larger sense they felt that their brethren across the ocean had betrayed their mutual trust. For this reason, the states chose to retreat once again into isolationism as their military preparations continued, and it seemed to some as if the dark times of the Migrations were destined to return.
Imminent disaster was perhaps narrowly averted when the first Federation survey ship arrived in the Bolarus system in 2252. Bolian antigravity and metallurgical technology astounded the Federation first-contact teams. Attracted by warp experiments the Bolians were conducting on Bolarus XIII, the Federation made formal contact with the three Bolian governments. Contact with the UFP served as a respite from the approaching war, and after numerous meetings with Federation contact teams the Bolians were able to step back and view their situation in a new light. They realized that their ancient prejudices had been manipulated, their racial proclivities exploited - they had been played for fools. As the three Bolian stated entered deeper negotiations with UFP diplomatic teams, the Uzor and Iren quietly withdrew their advisors and military personnel. A dispute with the UFP was a hindrance that neither relished.
After a period of several years during which the Bolian nations and the Federation established relations and learned more about one another, the Federation extended a rather unique invitation. The Bolians were invited to join the UFP, provided they first formed a single world government. However, it soon became apparent that the leaders of the three nations were not willing to work together peacefully, and early negotiations broke down almost as soon as they began. The rift which had begun during relations with the Iren and Uzor deepened, and the planet once again grew dangerously close to open conflict.
The UFP withdrew its offer after seeing the deep divisions separating the Bolian people, but many moderate Bolian leaders remained very impressed with the scientific and exploratory focus of the Federation. They saw full membership as a possible cure for the superficial differences that continued to divide their people. The most vocal proponent for world unity was an aged Bolian diplomat called Vaxx. He had been the primary negotiator with the Iren during first contact with that species, and the gradual erosion and eventual destruction of planetary relations had troubled him deeply. He felt that it was symptomatic of a deeper problem, and that until the Bolian people overcame their ancient prejudices, Bolarus IX would never be able truly to take its place in the growing interstellar community.
Wiser Bolians from all three nations soon realized that the benefits of Federation membership far outweighed their age-old differences. After several years of campaigning to create a true world government, Vaxx finally received the necessary support from each state. An accord was reached during several months of negotiation, and a unified world government was presented jointly to the Bolian people in the form of the World Council. Although the early years of unification remained somewhat tense and unpredictable, the natural Bolian synergistic qualities and affinity for cooperation allowed a relatively smooth transition. The benefits of unity quickly outstripped the drawbacks.
However, the UFP still had its doubts. It was only when the Bolians demonstrated their bravery and heroism that the Federation was finally convinced. Thanks to their advanced knowledge of local stellar phenomena, a group of scientists and researchers established by the World Council was able to predict the sudden collapse of the neighboring star Uzor, a collapse which would have caused the loss of billions of lives on the sole inhabited planet in the system. Determined to prevent this tragedy, the Bolians mobilized their limited space forces and managed to evacuate over 80% of the population of Uzor IV before the planet was destroyed. The fact that the nations put themselves at great risk to effect the rescue, despite their dark history with the Uzor people, finally swayed the Federation Council.
After this demonstration of solidarity, the World Council was deemed an acceptable government by the Federation. However, the government was still young and Bolian membership was conditioned on its continued maintenance and integration into Bolian society. A special Federation committee was established on Bolarus IX to observe the process and make sure that civil rights were preserved. Fortunately the stability lasted, and full UFP membership followed after several years of observation. Today the Bolian World Council stands as a testament to the will, unity, and cooperative nature of the Bolian people.
Since joining the Federation, the Bolians have contributed a great deal in a short time. Some of their accomplishments include the ongoing development of antigravity technology, the invention of new metallurgical and alloy processing techniques, and the creation of a new dilithium crystallization process. Perhaps even more important are the large numbers of Bolian recruits in Starfleet, who have proven themselves to be fiercely loyal and devoted to the Federation and its ideals. Although Bolarus IX has only been a UFP member for fifty years, few Federation member worlds have become such valued contributors in such a brief period of time.