The Platte System is a star system isolated from the rest of the galaxy since the end of the Collapse. The Platte System was home to a comparatively primitive branch of mankind. Given little regard for most of post-Collapse history, to the point of only being assumed to exist, it was "rediscovered" by a Haligonian fleet in 2768, the system was engulfed in a war of its own, which quickly became another front for the Galactic War.
Discovery and Colonization
The Platte System was named after Imperial astronomer Joseph Platte, who discovered the system and two potentially habitable worlds in 2155. Germany's Mitteleuropa Bloc purchased the system from the Imperial space program and discovered that two more worlds in the system could sustain limited human life. With increasing tensions between the American and German empires, records of the transfer were destroyed in an effort by both governments to destroy any evidence that they had cooperated on anything. By the 2170s, only a group of German militarists were aware of the Platte system's existence, only to be rediscovered by Coalition cartographers three hundred years later.
The militarists were concerned with the deteriorating state of the German Empire in known space and predicted that nuclear war would occur in a few decades. With a monopoly on the Platte System, they focused on creating a German enclave that would survive the collapse of greater human civilization. They envisioned a powerful German state which they controlled with an iron fist, one that would later take the galaxy after the inevitable collapse. Taking in political prisoners from the civil wars in Mitteleuropa's states and even the other superpowers, the militarists wanted to create a lower class they and their descendants could exploit. Supplies were embezzled as the German government severely reduced its spending in all sectors; the mysterious disappearances were explained away as computational errors. When the Collapse finally occurred, three of Platte's four inhabitable worlds were fully terraformed. An entire star system was waiting for the aged militarists, their children and any Germans lucky enough to join them.
The Colonial Era and the Platte Civil War
The Germans established a government on Württemberg, the largest and most Earthlike of the Platte worlds. From the 2240s to the turn of the century, German rule was firmly entrenched. The government preached that the rest of the galaxy crumbled to its hedonism and weakness and that only though unity under the state could Platte avoid the same fate. This propaganda failed to unite the people of Platte, most of whom were descendants of political prisoners and treated as a perpetual lower class. The terraforming of Cottbus disproportionately consumed the resources of the state; when the government failed to show any appreciable results for trillions of reichsmarks spent, faith in the government plummeted. Platte’s massive military budget was seen as unjustifiable and oppressive as the people felt there were no powers that could threaten Platte. The government system, an autocratic military dictatorship, was detached and this state was seen as failing in its responsibilities to the people and only interested in helping itself and other “insiders.” Extremist organizations on the right and left took to the streets, often fighting with one another but agreeing on one thing: the current system has to go. The government responded by sending its military against the protestors. This move backfired horribly for the militarists and marked the start of the Platte Civil War.
On Württemberg, the charge was led by the moderate Christian Democrats, which managed to unite enough of the major groups by arguing that if they do not hang together, they will surely hang separately. Glogau and Sulingen fell to other protest movements. The government fled Württemberg when police and army units in Neu Berlin refused to fire on the protestors, setting itself up in loyal fortresses on Cottbus. But even after the government’s surrender, the fighting did not end. The Christian Democrats established a provisional government and attempted to unite the entire system under the German Federal Republic. This was vehemently opposed by almost every other resistance movement, who felt that they would never have power in this new republic and instead turned their efforts to resisting the Christian Democrats. Fearing that they would be deposed like the militarists before them, the Christian Democrats struck a peace deal with the other factions in 2369.
After the Civil War and the Great Platte War
Even after the civil war, the nations of the Platte system were hardly friendly with one another. Ideological conflict mixed with traditional power politics to create byzantine international alliance systems that shifted constantly. Central to these systems is the German Federal Republic, which by 2400 was the most powerful state in Platte. Most alliances can be described as pro-Federal or anti-Federal, the members of which leave or join as soon as it serves their best interest. Several brushfire wars were fought between the civil war and the Great Platte War, the bloodiest of which was the Imperial War of 2616 when the German Empire of Cottbus tried to retake the entire system. By the 2750s, the GFR was being challenged by the upstart Nationalist Pact, composed of the Tsardom of Slavija, Kingdom of France and the American Confederation. Motivated by perceived discrimination against them by the German states, the Nationalists sought to overtake Platte and “right historical wrongs.” The Great Platte War began when the French demanded that the GFR hand over an area of Württemberg which had a large ethnically French minority. When the GFR refused, nationalist groups backed by the French revolted. The French intervened on behalf of the nationalists, sparking the Great Platte War.
In 2768, twelve years after the start of the war, a Haligonian fleet retreating from the Battle of Manchester reentered realspace in the Platte System in the hope that the system had a gas giant for refueling their reactors. Although they knew of the system's existence, they believed it was populated only by primitives that lacked any form of spacefaring technology. The Haligonians were surprised to see human ships in the system; they were even more surprised to receive talkie transmissions ordering them to identify themselves. Fearing that the ships are controlled by a minor Pactist state, the Haligonians open fired. In truth, they destroyed an Imperial German cruiser. When the Imperials counterattacked, the superior technology of the Haligonians gave them a fighting chance but they were overwhelmed. A few surviving ships reached Halifax and reported that an entire star system of great strategic use existed. Taking Platte would allow the Allies to bypass the Pactist navies controlling the Neu Stuttgart system and allow for another invasion of the Coalition’s industrial base in that front. News of the discovery was intercepted by Pactist spies and the Pactist powers decided that Platte could not be allowed to fall into communist hands. Both sides amassed massive battlefleets in an attempt to keep the system from one another’s hands, using the natives as pawns if necessary.