Contact: Relations with Humans

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Given their still limited understanding of Anglic and the fact that the small Tymbrimi crew of the Cuthmar were merchant spacers, they did not really appreciate the effect that their arrival had on the Humans. What was quite clear was that Earth was a uniquely pristine ecosystem, Humanity was a singularly extraordinary case of spontaneous uplift, and Tymbrimi and Humans got along quite well. Furthermore, Human and above all Tymbrimi interests had to be protected. The Humans had several hab-days until even the closest and fastest ships would appear in Earth's star system. During this time the crew of the Cuthmar was hard pressed to advise the leadership of Earth's Confederation of Nations and satisfy the insatiable desire of all three Terragen species for information and contact with the available ambassadors of Civilization.

Meanwhile, the Cuthmar started to bristle with primitive Human communications gear and their eccentric computer technology. Unfortunately, the Tymbrimi in their unfounded suspicion of Library bias, and arguably in violation of the terms of a Standard Library Lease, failed to make the on-board Library party to all the new communication channels. Nevertheless, the Library unit on the Cuthmar managed to accession almost one-quarter pico-branch worth of new data. This necessitated sequestration of data and reallocation of assets normally devoted to search-and-retrieval to data accession. With the arrival of the Galactic Library Institute ship the Cuthmar Library unit also had to allocate resources for coordination with the 2-128 branch on the Library Institute ship. Communication by the Cuthmar with Tymbrimi space remained minimal due to limited facilities for securing faster-than-light communications.

The closest planet to Earth, Gvuderon, is leased by the Paha ab-Soro. Paha ships with Soro authorities aboard were the first on the scene. The Tymbrimi had honored Human ecological protocols and worn isolation suits when visiting bio-active areas. Not appreciating the pristine state of Earth’s ecology (and having the military means to do as they pleased) the Soro-Paha expedition dispatched teams nearly wherever they pleased.

Galactic Institute for Migration ships are always dispersed throughout Civilized space. They were particularly common in the Ehbu'chi'u sector because of the pending migration scheduled for the region. Thus, a GIM Gamma Warden was the next representative of Civilization to arrive in system.

The Captain of the x03b3;-Warden promptly heard a long list of complaints about Soro violations of the Wolflings quarantines. After consulting with the Cuthmar Library unit and confirmation by the Warden’s drones, the Captain promptly reprimanded the Soro and Paha, ordering them to honor the Wolflings biological encounter protocol in full. Unfortunately, several exotic micro-organisms had already been introduced to Earth’s fragile ecosystem.

The Paha also filed a claim on all apes and cetaceans (including Humans) as promising uplift candidates. This claim was widely and immediately disputed upon the arrival of Galactic Uplift Institute authorities. Therefore, the GUI changed the status of the Paha Uplift Candidacy Claim on apes and toothed cetaceans to inactive . The claim is still on the inactive list, but it has not been declared invalid.

Ironically Soro high-handed power politics earned them an acute and irrational reaction typical of the savage Terragen Wolflings, and left Clan Soro at a significant disadvantage relative to other clans and species because the Soro were penalized in the Humans' early tendency to freely provide copious information and hospitality. Furthermore, since the crew of the Cuthmar were themselves highly biased against the Soro, the behavior of the Soro only boosted the status of the Tymbrimi and their radically extremist politics.

The GIM’s initial interaction with the Humans was schizophrenic. The GIM guaranteed the Confederation of Nations biological quarantine. However, they dismissed the Confederation’s claims to absolute sovereignty in its home system. Soon Earth was swarming with GIM drones and personnel. There were minor casualties among park rangers and guards at secure facilities. The ranking GIM Associate also expressed concern about a number of ecological problems on Earth. The GIM was particularly alarmed over biological research projects in the system’s gas giants. The self-evident fact that Humans had an unknown number of colonies in other star systems was also cause for enormous concern.

However, the Associate did issue a preliminary (and controversial) finding that Earth was the legitimate Homeworld of the Humans and that they had met or exceeded minimal criteria for ecological competence. When an Alpha Warden arrived the a GIM Fellow reiterated the findings of his junior colleague on the x03b3;-Warden.

The Fonnir’s Homeworld is very close to Earth. Fonnir curiosity had been piqued by reports and all the psionic chatter in nearby space. A small delegation from this elder species easily traveled to Earth using quantum tunneling drives. The dignified and venerable Fonnir were mostly content to observe the events unfolding. Most contacts were through the Norhurruk caretaker species. Norhurruk representatives deflected all requests by Humans or Tymbrimi to deal directly with their estimable Fonnir patrons.

Nevertheless, small numbers of Fonnir met almost daily with Terragens throughout their mission’s 2.5 hab-year stay in-system. Norhurruk were evidently stressed and worried that harm might come to their valuable charges through regular contact with the unpredictable savages. However, no Fonnir seemed to display any ill effect from contact with Terragens.

A Norhurruk team was also a major contributor to early research on real-time machine translation of Anglic to standard Galactic languages.

The next arrivals were a Tymbrimi patrol cruiser with two destroyers. Many experts remain highly skeptical of Tymbrimi claims that this state-of-the-art force just happened to be protecting nearby Tymbrimi assets and trade routes.

Within 1024 hab of the x03b3;-Warden’s arrival small, over-powered ships representing various clan and commercial news organizations entered orbit around Earth. Throughout the initial contact phase news agencies were frustrated by the lack of accurate automatic real-time translators for Anglic. They were forced to rely on Terragens learning Gal-7 and other civilized languages.

As luck would have it the Linten were interested in reports of a lush, isolated ecology and primitive wolflings with surprisingly clever techniques in micro-biosphere engineering and terraforming. The Linten used a second generation quantum warp drive ship on special loan from their retired grand-patrons to rush to Earth's star system. The main-sequence passengers (including the Linten) were housed in a modular pod equipped with standard Lesh Clan research technology. No Terragen was ever introduced to the Linten Grand-Patrons. The Linten mission contained a large Kanten contingent. The Human-Kanten special relationship dates from this early contact.

About 1.15 x 215 after Contact a larger Kanten contingent arrived using standard A-Level hyperspace drives. They established the first permanent Alien presence on Moon Base Alpha. 1.31 x 213 later, the same mission established the first consular office at Tijuana.

Unlike the Tymbrimi and Kanten, Synthian involvement during the initial contact episode was guarded and limited to an assay of Wolfling technology done for the Galactic Institute for the Promotion of Progress and Newness. Other than enthusiasm inspired by the novelty of Human culture and technology, the first open support by Clan Synthian for Humans was a friend-of-tribunal brief that strongly argued for granting Humans the status of a mature species and unencumbered patron status over Neo-Chimp, Neo-Gorilla, Neo-Dolphin, Neo-Elephant, Neo-Dog, and Neo-Lion. Namely all species actively under any stage of uplift by Humans at the time of contact.

Over the next sixteen hab-years most influential clans and nearly all galactic institutions established a presence in Earth's star system. The diplomatic and legal chronologies are long and involved, inspiring a substantial body of analysis. and historical interpretation (see bibliography).

However, the casual reader should note that Humans were found to be a mature species by the Galactic Uplift Institute. The GUI also confirmed that Neo-Chimpanzee and Neo-Dolphin were level-1 clients and that Humans were their patrons. Also, the GUI reluctantly agreed to allow the Tymbrimi to serve as level-1 Uplift Consorts for Neo-Chimpanzee and Neo-Dolphin. On the other hand, the GUI refused to grant Humanity presumptive patron status over all of Earth’s genetic stock. The institute refused to rule on whether or not Neo-Dog and Neo-Elephant had attained the status of level-1 clients, but Humanity’s claim of Patron status for canines and elephants was given preliminary recognition. Any rulings on Humanity’s patron status over active uplift programs for gorillas and lions were postponed. The remarkable adoption of the Thennanin as patrons by Gorillas on Garth has since unequivocally resolved the case for Gorillas. Human claims of patronhood for lions and other cats remains in bureaucratic limbo. The GUI also ordered a cessation of all Human uplift programs except for Neo-Chimp, Neo-Fin, Neo-Dog, and Neo-Elephant. Severe and unusual, but temporary, restrictions were put on the Neo-Dog and Neo-Elephant projects.

In addition to active rulings and regulations, the GUI issued official but non-binding findings expressing serious reservations about the speed of Human uplift projects. Institute officials were also concerned about the degree of freedom that Humans gave to uplifted species early in their uplift minority.

After an initially mixed relationship the Galactic Institute for Migration clashed with Humans over their pre-contact colonies on ecologically sensitive planets. Relations reached their nadir after the extermination of the Muduan sooner infestation.

The Language Academy was and is vexed by the refusal of the Human Clan to adopt a civilized language. However, the Academy’s annoyance pales compared to ongoing Galactic Foresight Organization alarm over Human indifference to traditional restrictions on technology regarded as critical to peace and security in O-2, and even Organic, space. These concerns have their parallels in the GUI where some parties worry about the Human Clan’s blasé attitude toward cyborging and even artificial intelligence.

Only two major incidents occurred in the Earth system during the first years of contact. Little is known about the first except that sealed briefs were submitted by the Galactic Institute for Migration, the Galactic Uplift Institute, the Galactic Institute of Civilized Warfare, and the Linten, Thennanin, and Soro to the Galactic Institute of Tradition. The GIT issued a sealed finding. Thereafter, the commander of the large Tandu expedition that had recently arrived in system was summoned to the GICW mission for a brief meeting. Directly after the meeting all Tandu left the Solar System, and except for very small temporary diplomatic missions, did not return until the Siege of Earth.

The second major incident involved the Jophur leading a mass exodus of Obeyer clans from the system when the GUI issued preliminary findings that Humans were a competent, mature species and patrons of two level-1 clients. As a result, most Obeyers and the Tandu never signed the Lunar Accords. In fact, the Jophur were so upset over back-channel Synthian involvement that they suspended relations with the Synthians for more than 128 hab-years.

Trent Shipley.
Created: Early 2000’s
Updated: 2016

David Brin reserves all rights to his creative elements of his universes. This page is not for the profit of Trent Shipley nor his employer nor contracting agent. This work shall not impede David Brin’s ability to use and extend his stories.

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