Sunday, September 26, 2004

Situation 1323

In 1323 the Caliphate of Edessa (as Roum is known) is in a perilous state. Allthough it has not lost any of its original provinces of Edessa, Ankara, Iconium, Tarsus or Armenia, neither has it gained any of the vital neighboring independent provinces of Angora, Nicea or Antioch. Although a large treasury of 127 gold exists to spend, the relatively small standing army is composed mainly of horsed archers. What infantry units there are are scattered, and the Saracen Guard are away from the main front. There are only two major population centres available for recruitment (Edessa and Tarsus) and of these, Tarsus is under immediate threat. There is a small fleet at port at Tarsus, our only harbour.

Jurusalem and Antioch remain independent, with a large Mamluke army building in Egypt. The black sea remains empty of all but a small fleet of the Golden Horde, with whom our only alliance exists at present (a relic which we maintain from the previous ruler).

The main threat lies to the West, Byzantium. Although the emporer has expanded in the West, and appears to be in low level conflict with Hungarian forces in the Northern Balkans, his strongest army remains in the citadel at his capital, along with a fleet larger than the Caliphate's. The strongest field army of the Emporer is in Asia minor, where there is a strong siege army in Miletus (bordering Tarsus) and significant cavalry forces in Smyrna and Nicea which threaten our central provinces and Angora. There has been no response from the emporer to our missives.

Thus, we have one ally nearby, a couple of independents within reach, one of which is a population centre (Jerusalem). We face strong Byzantine armies threatening our homelands, and a Mamluke who might might still turn upon our Southern Flank. We have a scattered army ill equiped for defenesive warfare, and population resources (Edessa) insufficient to build a significant army if we are attacked by Byzantium (and Tarsus falls).

An interesting situation to take over!

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