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Map of Mars

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Seen here are the national boundaries of the generally recognized countries of Mars drawn over a false-color elevation map. Population centers are marked in red. Gray denotes uninhabitable areas.

My idea here is that Martian civilization developed in the deep valleys of X and then spread across the equator. Areas of low elevation became desirable as farmland, and there were several waves of invasions from the mountains to the lowlands. The lowlanders however, could grow more food than the highlanders, and so eventually developed armies that kept the highlanders in the mountains. In modern times, highland clans have combined to form nation-states, but they are still very fragmented. Lowland states are larger, more politically organized, and more advanced technologically, except in the northern latitudes, where civilization gives way to nomadic tribes. The big basin of Y was discovered relatively recently and settled by northern lowlanders. It, and the two lowland equatorial areas form the three big political powerhouses on Mars.

The original discussion of the idea: ([link])
The design of a Martian: ([link])
Map of mars: ([link])
Continents of mars: ([link])
Martian races: ([link])
Martian religions: ([link])
Martian economic blocks: ([link])
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anonymous's avatar
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souhjiro's avatar
Curious about the Channels of Mars, is very probable many conflicts could originate between political units, because they are a planetwide net of water supply spanning from the poles, at once their astronomers detect the watery Earth, and receiving radio notices from the expedition on England, the perspective of a world plenty of resources could quell for a long time the conflicts as a lot of effort are invested on colonization, also the Earth water sent to Mars could outrun the use of channels?
bensen-daniel's avatar
All good ideas. See above your comment for my take on channels.

I think that toward the end of the 20th century, Martians might find it easier to mine comets for water. The problem with Earth is that it is really difficult to get things off of Earth, and water is heavy. But yes, I think that a lot of the motivation for the conquest of the Earth would be to get water. I don't think it would result in any greater peace on Mars, though. Vast resources have a way of destabilizing politics.
Look at the relationship between Europe and the oil-rich countries of the MIddle East. Or look at that relationship as it was before world war II.
You have several powerful countries with colonial holdings in the resource-rich conquered areas. These powers are constantly trying to upstage each other, often by using the colonial powers as puppets to fight each other away from the motherland. At the same time, less powerful countries near the motherland (i.e. Europe/Mars) try to arrange relationships between themselves and the big powers, but all secretly want to push aside the big powers and grab onto their command of resources. Think of Europe pre World War I. All of the little powers of Europe had allied themselves with all the big powers in such a way that, when anyone anywhere attacked anyone else, it pulled everyone into one side or the other of a continental war. Maybe something like that will happen on Mars.
Sphenacodon's avatar
I take it this Mars isn't a desert, right?
bensen-daniel's avatar
yes it is. The gray is uninhabitable mountains. The blue is low elevation. Martians can live on Mars because they're hardy and their industrial processes have warmed it slightly.
Sphenacodon's avatar
Oh, okay. If it's a bit warmer, would there be at least some water melt-off from the icecaps?
bensen-daniel's avatar
certainly. There will be several rivers.
and I think canals would be cool. I wonder what they would mean politically?

1) They are universal public goods, erected by empires in the past and maintained by the religious authority (as if the Catholic church maintained Roman roads during the Middle Ages)

2) They are modern international works, created by the Martian equivalent of the EU or the UN.

3) They are built by individual countries, but there is some taboo against destroying or damming them.

4) They are built by individual countries, there is not taboo against destroying them. In fact, the use of canals for transportation and controlling an enemy nation's water supply is an integral part of Martian warfare.
Then I'll have to redraw those maps.
Sphenacodon's avatar
They could be all of the above, potentially. Canal-making could have been started by the ancient empires, with the largest and most spectacular ones being the oldest (and thus landmarks like the Pyramids or the Great Wall). Canal-making could have then been continued by later civilizations, though on not such a large scale. The smallest are those built by individual countries. And the taboo could apply to the old and venerable canals, but not the new-fangled ones (probably the difference between destroying a brick wall and the Great Wall).

Some might even be arranged into patterns/shapes, like the Nazca lines, for religious/artistic purposes.

bensen-daniel's avatar
Oh, excellent idea! Much more complicated than I was thinking and therefor much better!

Okay, so the big canals are the ancient ones.
I wouldn't be too sure about a taboo against destroying antiquities, though. The pyramids have been systematically destroyed by everyone from the Egyptians themselves to the Arabs to the French (target practice on the Sphinx. Priceless). Probably the only thing that saved them is they're too freakin big to move.
So maybe the ancient canals are not entirely functional anymore.

And I like the idea about sacred shapes. Since they are pathways of water and transportation, it's a short leap to turn the canals into pathways of mystical energy, maybe something like chi.
Sphenacodon's avatar
Presumably some cultures hold some canals in respect, and others don't (those Napoleonic soldiers wouldn't be shooting the stained glass out of Notre Dame cathedral now, would they?)

Water is probably held in high regard, so anything that transports water could be seen as the lifeblood of the planet.
bensen-daniel's avatar
Those are both good points.
A word of caution though: I don't think the Martians want water for drinking. Mars has been dry for a long time, and any life that evolved there wouldn't need much. My idea is that the Martians want water for industrial processes.
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