Carter Thompson (State)
Utah, parts of Idaho
Salt Lake City
Deseret Air Force, Deseret Legion
In 1928, Utah enacted the Smith Law, which made the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints the official state religion of Utah. Despite strong representations from the federal government, Utah refused to back down. This failure by the federal government to enforce the seperation of church and state was cited in the secession declarations of the Republic of Texas, the Nation of Hollywood and the Empire State. Shortly after this first wave of secessions, Utah announced its own departure from the Union.
Intially keeping the name Utah, the country chose to return to the name Deseret following the formation of the People's Collective and the secession of Free Colorado. Organising themselves into a people's militia, the Deseret Air Force and the Deseret Legion, the people of that desert land prepared to fight for their independence.
Deseret is also the home of the famous Browning Arms Company, one of the premier suppliers of aircraft cannon.
Deseret has made no secret that it desires to expand its territory, claiming that it is a mission from God. However, hemmed in by the Navajo Territory to the south, the pirates of Free Colorado to the east and the militia of the People's Collective to the north, the Deseret Air Force is steadily attempting to pacify and assimilate parts of the Disputed Western Territories, with some notable successes.
Deseret is an insular, isolationist nation, its borders closely guarded and visitors strongly discouraged. Merchants and traders are permitted access, but only along well-defined corridors. The extensive internal railway network is covered by tethered battle balloons, and no foreign zeppelin is permitted within ten miles of Salt Lake City itself. Ogden is the main commercial hub of the nation.
Despite persistent rumours, the 1890 Manifesto has not been repealed in Deseret - the practise of polygamy is still a crime, and thus prohibited by the Church. However, mandatory conscription in either the Navuoo Legion or the Deseret Air Force is a reality, although there is no legal requirement for citizens to be members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
The leader of the nation is Heber J Grant, President of the Church, but the day-to-day leadership is handled by Carter Thompson, the Governor. Thompson is a dilligent and energetic leader, and he is widely regarded as the person responsible for attempting to keep Deseret's borders open.