Second Martian Revolution

The Second Martian Revolution happened in 2127, simultaneously with the Great Flood on Terra. With this global revolution, Mars successfully acquired independence from Terra.

The causes and the preparation

Since none of the issues that caused the First Martian Revolution had been resolved, the Second Revolution had similar causes.

  • Desire to be independent from Terra.
  • Transnational/metanational rule over Martian affairs.
  • Disregard of the Martian environment by the transnationals.
  • General incompatibility of the life style provided by the transnational system with the precepts commonly agreed upon by the Martian underground in the Dorsa Brevia Declaration.

The underground meticulously prepared this revolution. Of outmost importance was not to begin the revolution too early; coordinators had the task to moderate premature revolutionary movements. The principal organizers were Maya Toitovna, Nadia Cherneshevsky, Sax Russell, Nirgal and Jackie.

The revolution

The revolution began when news came from Terra of a major volcanic eruption in Antarctica which, in addition to two centuries worth of global warming, had destabilised the West Antarctic icesheet and caused most of it to collapse into the ocean. This would result in a global sea level rise of about seven metres, much of which would occur within as little as a few days. The ensuing flooding of every coastline in the world would greatly disrupt Terran affairs. The rebels took advantage of this diversion to start mass demonstrations on the streets of Martian towns.

Much of the retaliation capabilities of UNTA and transnational forces were destroyed by a barrage of ground-to-space rockets created by Sax's team in Da Vinci. This gave the Martian revolutionaries unprecedented freedom to manoeuvre in combating transnational forces on the ground. Security forces in many cities, suddenly lacking the threat of an orbital bombardment to maintain control over the Martian populace, quickly lost their authority across much of the planet.

Unlike the disorganised chaos of the first Martian revolution, the second unfolded with much less (though still considerable) bloodshed due to the fairly tight-knit organisation of the Martian underground. The first town to be liberated was Underhill, the original settlement of the first hundred, and occurred without any actual fighting. It began when a large crowd of armed protestors surrounded the local metanat security officials who were then given the choice by Nadia Cherneshevsky of either joining the revolution right then and there, or leaving peacefully in a train to Sheffield. They chose the latter option. A similar tactic was used by revolutionary groups all over Mars.

Within days most of Mars's settlements had been liberated, usually peacefully. Most of the Elysium region including its large towns of South Fossa, Hephaestus and Elysium Fossa declared their support for a free Mars. Senzeni Na, Korolyov, Nicosia and most of the Hellas region including Odessa likewise fell into the hands of various rebel groups and before long most metanational police forces had withdrawn back to the planet's two largest cities, Burroughs and Sheffield, and several other towns such as Cairo, Lasswitz and Sudbury.

Also during these first few days of the revolution the rebels, under Sax's guidance, lit a bushfire upwind of Kasei Vallis where the most secure metanat security compounds on Mars were located. Over the last few years Sax had overseen the releasing of certain strains of bacteria on Mars to excessively increase the oxygen content of the Martian atmosphere to facilitate just this attack, and the metanat compounds were soon destroyed in the subsequent inferno. Upon seeing Nadia's shock at this action Sax justified it by saying "this was the training site for all their secret police. The ones who would never give up. The torturers. We're better off without them."

A setback then occurred in Sabishii, previously the largest non metanat-dominated city on Mars. A several-hundred strong UNTA expeditionary force that had previously been scouring the southern highlands for rebel hideouts attacked the city on their journey back north towards the main contested areas. While the surface portion of the city was taken in a bitter all-night fight with the local red guerrillas, the UNTA forces quickly decided their position there was untenable due to the extent of the underground maze beneath Sabishii, which they found they could not secure. They continued northward to Burroughs.

The situation in Burroughs, then the largest city on Mars with a population of some 200,000 people and recently swollen by refugees and security forces fleeing from neighbouring towns, quickly turned into a stalemate. The situation changed dramatically during a fight between security forces and the Kakaze which resulted in the breaking of the major dam north of the city which had been built to protect Burroughs from the growing sea (then still mainly composed of ice) forming across the Vastitas Borealis basin in Mars's northern hemisphere as the planet was terraformed.

Within hours the security forces had abandoned the doomed city and flown to Sheffield while the Martian rebels had to evacuate the population, mainly by foot, to Libya train station some 70km to the south. This was only made possible by Sax Russell and his team having previously created some half a million emergency breathing masks, designed to filter out CO2, just in case of such an eventuality as this. With these masks the atmosphere was otherwise just breathable, though still very thin and cold, and made the evacuation possible. Burroughs was submerged within days.

The transnational forces on Mars were thus reduced almost solely to controlling the space elevator and the area around its socket in central Sheffield. A major Red attack on the socket occurred several days later, but opposition from other rebel groups who did not want to see the elevator destroyed outright helped defeat the assault and Kasei, the leader of the Kakaze and son of Hiroko Ai and John Boone, was killed. Despite this loss however, the Martian revolutionaries were now in control of nearly all of Mars. 

The consequences

Martian independence was ensured. The Pavonis Mons Congress, where the Martian constitution was created, followed soon after.