The Levant is an interstellar republic founded by mass produced human clones. It is one of the most recently established nations in the Known Galaxy and also the smallest human nation, with a population of four billion and only two star systems in its territory.
The Levant was established in 3523 following the Emancipation War in the Verandi Empire. The war between the clones workers and their Verandi masters ended with Verandi ceding part of its frontier to the freed clones, who migrated en masse to their newly established nation.
The Levant takes its name from the area of Earth referred to as the Holy Land. It was chosen to emphasize the clones' connection with the rest of humanity.
The clones of the Levant were the creation of the Verandi Empire. A biologically engineered workforce to serve the needs of their owners. After decades of abuse and marginalization the clones rebelled. The Emancipation War between the clones and their masters saw the clones take up arms for the first time on August 1, 3520, Red Monday, and a coordinated sabotage effort by the resistance group known as the Underground, led by an Instructor model named Hywel crippled Verandi's ability to fight back. The Underground led a guerrilla war, attacking critical cities across the Empire in hit-and-run operations that strained the resources of the Verandi military. Fighting raged on for three years, with the Underground solidifying its support among clones and capturing or destroying the all-important cloning facilities needed to produce more clones. Poor management of the conflict by Verandi's military leaders led to unrest among the populace, prompting a massive offensive in the Natalie System to crush the rebellion. Forewarned, the Underground prepared a stiff resistance, and secured arms from the Kaladian Empire, enabling them to halt the Verandi during the Battle of Emeraldia. The cost of the rebellion with no end in sight became too much for Verandi and the two sides agreed to a ceasefire, which ended with the Treaty of Borcatta, granting the clones their emancipation as well as ceding two of Verandi's farther star systems to them to establish their own state.
The ambassador of the Levant is a tall, swarthy-skinned man named Jehoshaphat. 
The Levant was established after a costly war which left the state in debt, particularly to the Kaladian Empire and Kuhneebo Conglomerate. Bechloss and Aryes had only been settled for a few decades, and the slow pace of colonization had limited the amount of infrastructure on their planets. In addition, the two systems had been almost entirely dependent on the Verandi Breadbasket Worlds for food.
Debate erupting in the High Council over whether to focus on internal improvements in agriculture and production in the name of self-sufficiency or direct more attention to trade and merging into the galactic economy. The supports of the former won out, though because the Levant lacked the necessary equipment to begin mass farming, had to import anyway. In 3525, the High Council commissioned the Monetary Authority of the Levant (MAL) with the stated goals of establishing financial stability, paying off the war debts, and regulating credit and interest rates. After smoothing over relations with their former enemy, the Levant was able to boost its economy by functioning as a trading hub between Verandi and Kaladea during times of heightened tension between the two that prevented the normal flow of goods from being trafficked. Since the Freedom War it has become a focal point for ships that do not want to want to go through more pirate heavy areas of the Solar Republic.
As of 3555 the Levant, has stabilized and begun investing in bioengineering, medicinal technology, and pharmaceuticals, the high quality of which makes them competitive in the marketplace. Consumer electronics, computer technology, and communications technology are also major exports of the Levant. Most agricultural products are consumed locally and while the government has subsidized the creation of large vertical farms and meat labs of the Verandi style to increase produce production, the nation still imports approximately 30% of its food. Larger industrial products such as transportation, factory equipment and energy technology, are consumed by the domestic market when they are produced or are purchased from abroad. The Levant has limited space ship building facilities, and as a result most Levanti ships are foreign made.
The Defense Forces of the Levant is comprised of two branches; the Space Defense Force (Space DeF) and Terrestrial Defense Force (Tez DeF). Because of what Levant considers an ever present threat by Verandi, all Levanti are conscripted into the military at age 18 for a period of three years, after which those who decline to serve longer are placed in the Reserves of their respective branches.
The Space DeF consists of a small but modern fleet constructed partly in the Levant and partly from warships bought elsewhere. Two active flotillas are maintained, one in each of the country’s star systems, each centered around a division of the Levant’s most powerful ships, the battle cruisers. Although based on Verandi designs, doctrinal differences have resulted in certain modifications. Being a defensive fleet, Space DeF ships are not expected to engage in campaigns far from home and thus have lower fuel capacity and self-repair capabilities.
Levanti culture is has its roots in the mixture of Verandi ideas and the movement known as Clone Pride. A backlash response to the idea that clones were inherently inferior; Clone Pride instead insisted that the situations surrounding their creation and upbringing make them unique and are a source of pride.
Levanti clones continue to use manufacturing and product terms when referencing themselves. Rather than being "born" a clone is "manufactured". Clones with a history of bad behavior are "defective". Ethnic groups are based on the original purpose of that type of clone and are referred to as models. Prior to being given a formal name, young clones are referred to by their model number and it is under their model number that all formal records refer to them by.
Clones share the Verandi abhorrence for genetic tampering though they were altered extensively prior to being grown. As a result, the Levant did not reverse any of the changes made upon them, including the in-built sterility. The population is maintained by the manufacture and growth of new clones, the number of which is regulated by the Population Oversight Committee on behalf of the government. Young clones are grown in specialized facilities according to type, after which they are transferred to communal schools for education and rearing until adulthood.
Despite the separation, clone tastes in fashion, media, and architecture display a clear Verandi influence. Levanti, like Verandi, wear colorful garments, though unlike the intricate pattern pieces worn by Verandi, clones tend to favor individual items of a solid color. The Levant disavows the claim that the highly individualistic manner of dress is for telling each other apart. Many in the entertainment industry among the Levant’s population had once belonged to owners whose skills they picked up on while in bondage and put to good use advancing their own careers. Clone settlements were virtually identical to their Verandi counterparts by virtue of using the same construction designs left behind after the war.
Ethnic differences in the Levant stem not from place of origin but from model type. The original Standard Model clone was a general purpose worker with no outstanding attributes accredited to them. Subsequent models were more specialized and advertised as excelling in particular fields, even more so that their normal human counterparts. A constant source of debate in the Levant is how many of each model should be produced. A general imbalance towards Standards and Laborers has existed since the Levant's inception while Instructors and Caretakers have had their manufacture rate increased. Assistants and Extras, having only begun mass production five and three years prior to the Emancipation War, have always been numerically inferior and have protested that their populations are being discriminated against by the government refusing to increase their manufacture rate as well.
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