Colony:  Sagittaron

The Ninth Lord of Kobol, Dionysus, was the founder of Sagittaron, the Colony that is infamous for its unfortunate history. The planet has a standard atmosphere, although barometric pressure at sea level is a little lower than Caprican standard. Sagittarian weather extremes are virtually unheard of, possibly as a result of the extremely slow rotational period (almost 2:1 relative to Caprican standard). Sagittaron also bears witness to some of the most irregular and broken terrain of any of the Twelve Colonies; most extensive mountain ranges on all Twelve Colonies, directing the pattern of rainfall and vectoring wind flow. Even the arable land is composed of valleys and hills; there is very little flat terrain on the Sagittarian surface. Sagittaron has only two extremely large continents (Ino in the north and Athamas in the south); the eastern seaboards of both continents receive the majority of the rainfall (particularly the deluge at the start of spring), while the western seaboards tend to be much more arid.

 

The dichotomous distribution of rainfall has been implicated in the evolution of a dual societal structure on Sagittaron. While the eastern half of the planet is as prosperous as any other Colonial world, the western half is largely poor with most of the western cities little more than collections of slums and pre-fabricated buildings. The East is densely populated with viticulture and light metal ore mining (e.g. aluminium, copper) being the predominant industries. The Colonies' best vintages, without exception, come from Sagittaron, and the planet is an important supplier of raw resources for Colonial industry. In the west, however, the story is much more different. While only approximately only one-fifth of the total Sagittarian population inhabited the west, the unfair reputation and image of Sagittaron amongst the other Colonies stems wholly from the state of the western settlements. The western settlements were not planned by the Government - they grew like weeds as havens for the unsavoury and unwelcome, who banded together for survival. These settlements attract all sorts of malcontents, criminals and pirates; neither the authority of the Sagitarrian or Colonial Governments carries much weight in the west. Rather, the western settlements seem to operate on an almost feudal system and hierarchy of their own, paying nominal lip service to the Sagitarrian and Colonial Governments.

 

These western settlements, despite their unsavoury reputation, have played a vital role in Colonial history. It is from here that Sagitarrian pirates operated, raiding key trade routes and transports. In retaliation, Picon launched a strike against these bases, which the Sagitarrian government interpreted as a breach of its sovereignty. Though the Sagitarians would have been more than glad to be rid of these malcontents, they were nevertheless drawn into a battle that was not theirs. The outcome was the only full-fledged invasion of a Colony by another, followed by the occupation under which Sagittaron suffered greatly. The Pisceans were no more successful in their pogroms to destroy the underworld brotherhood operating from the western settlements than the Sagitarians; it proved to be impossible to eradicate them without virtually depopulating the west.

 

The consequences of the Piscean occupation carried on after the unification of the Colonies; by then, Sagittaron was already far behind her sister Colonies, a position from which she is unable to escape despite numerous initiatives by the Colonial Government on Caprica. Furthermore, Sagitarrian labour is without doubt the cheapest available in the Colonies; workers have few rights and protections on Sagittaron, a fact that many corporations exploit. As a consequence of her ignominious status as the poor cousin, Sagittaron has also been afflicted with much civil strife caused by the efforts of terrorists and insurrectionists (so called "freedom fighters") for the right of Sagittaron to secede from the Articles of Colonization.

 

Eastern Sagitarians tend to be laid back and relaxed about most things; they have sufficient prosperity to maintain an adequate standard of living despite the unenviable state of their Colony. They are partiers and lovers of all things fun, and have a wild streak in them that cause them to be seen as "adrenalin junkies". They tend to be seen as irresponsible and reckless by other Colonists but none can admit that more often than not, the Sagittarians are the life of the party. The western Sagitarians are an honourable lot, operating by a strange form of the thieves' code or honour, and an almost feudal hierarchy. By other Colonial standards, the westerners are the scum of the universe, being both cunning and immoral. Other unpleasant descriptors of the westerners include being seedy and generally dodgy. On the positive side, westerners are known for their tenacity and survival instincts.