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Defense Condition

Also known as: Defcon (Defense Condition)

The United Nations Security Council defines four levels of military alert. From least to most severe, they are:

Seat of Honor

The United Nations Space Fleet military academy, also the first school to be built in open space and not on a planet. Widely regarded as the best four-year college for science and engineering in the Solar System. The main campus is a large Trojan asteroid, hollowed out and spun for gravity, fixed at Mars' trailing Lagrange point. Smaller asteroids containing labs, classrooms, and dormitories make up the rest of the university.

The name comes from a speech made by former United Nations President Samuel Gregory, in which he advocated expanding the infrastructure of the United Nations and specifically called for the construction of a university, "a seat of honor at the high table of Mars -- not a monument to the past or a convenience of the present, but a foundation for our future."

Miles Spatium /MEE-lays SPAH-tee-um/

The official name for the "Space Marines", the United Nations Space Fleet's equivalent of the United States Marine Corps. The literal translation from Latin is "Soldiers of Space".

The popular personification of this organization is "Miles O'Space", often depicted in political cartoons as a redheaded man of Irish descent who has vision problems. One joke goes:

Q: How much space have we got out there?
A: Miles O'Space.

Though clever, this is not widely regarded as actually being funny.

Hong Kong

Chinese name: XiangGang (Ping-Ying), or Hsiang Kang (Wade-Giles).

A collection of natural and artificial islands (including Stonecutters Island, the Kowloon Peninsula, and Quinn Archipelago) located off the southern coast of China's Kwangtung province.

Hong Kong was a British crown colony from 1898 to 1997, and returned to China in July 1997. After the Stonecutters Blockade and Hong Kong Riots in 2005, Hong Kong was recognized as a sovereign state by the United Nations and, under the provisions of Security Council Resolutions 1924 and 1925, "loaned" a temporary peacekeeping force.

Since the 2040s, the island of Hong Kong has hosted the largest free market stock exchange on Earth.

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Last modified: 08 Jan 2000