The Democratic Republic of Qurac is a former Soviet test colony and, like many states in the Milky Way, is neither democratic nor a republic. Even among the various heavily militarized dictatorships of the galaxy, Qurac is notorious for its saber rattling and its unabashedly pragmatic foreign relations policy. It shares with various powers in the Second 240-300 War the dubious distinction of being a state that is allied with more than one superpower at once.
When the Soviet Union conquered and forcefully annexed much of the Middle East during the Islamic revolutions of the 2180s, it had a massive problem with the various ethnic and religious groups in the area. Although historically rivals, many of these groups immediately realized the implications of being dominated by a totalitarian, atheistic Russian socialist state and put aside their differences to fight against the Soviets. The Soviets had considered using planned famines, mass executions and other traditional methods to counter the insurgency, but they were inspired by the Imperial practice of using “treasonous peoples” as terraforming testers. The colony of Qurac (Turkish for “arid” and “dry”), a Mars-like world before terraforming, had millions upon millions of Middle Easterners and prisoners of all ethnicities dumped on it by the Soviets until the beginning of the Collapse. The world was unsurprisingly hostile to the colonists and millions died from the lack of resources and the wars that deficiency sparked. Many ethnic and religious groups formed their own xenophobic enclaves that promised death to any who wandered into their territory without their permission. Others, mostly those unfortunate enough to find themselves the frigid polar deserts that remained even after terraforming, became wandering nomads that moved wherever there was food and water.
The modern Democratic Republic of Qurac originated from the Republic of Iraq, a Sunni Arab state that engaged in a war of conquest against the entire planet. Iraq’s leader, Ahmed Al-Asad, led a nationalist party that assumed power after promises of restoring Iraqi glory after a humiliating defeat several decades before. Iraq’s armored divisions quickly overran its neighbors and dominated the continent of Arabia. A generation later, Al-Asad’s successor would go on to conquer the rest of the planet, aside from the polar deserts, with the aid of intercontinental ballistic missiles. The Democratic Republic of Qurac was formed, officially a democratic confederation of “independent” states but in truth an Iraqi-dominated world where every non-Arab was treated as a second-hand citizen. Naturally, this racist policy caused problems with many ethnic groups on the planet, who caused constant rebellion. Ironically, the Quraci government would implement the Soviet’s solution by dumping their rebels on other worlds and systems. This naturally required some expansion, which eventually led to conflicts with Acadia and the Imperial Commonwealth. Qurac responded to these conflicts by making alliances with various superpowers, promising reform in its economy and government but never going through with any of them.
Modern Qurac is far less racially intolerant than it had been during its founding, but there is still a clear hierarchy. Non-Islamic religions are not officially recognized, but Qurac is a fairly secular state compared to those founded by “free” groups in its colonies. It is also far less dependent on the personality of its “Supreme Leader” than in the past; instead, more and more power is delegated to the military. Dissent is responded to with volley guns and neurotoxin. Internationally, Qurac has an “unholy alliance” with both the Conseil and Coalition, and receives money, weapons and military equipment from both. Both superpowers are aware of this, but hope to use Qurac as a counterbalance to the Technocracy-dominated Imperial Commonwealth.