Readers of the forthcoming second book of the New Persia series will encounter a whole new set of foreign names. Names belonging to people are almost all either of Persian or Swahili origin. Names of military equipment follow the same pattern.
For instance, the Azanian light tank called the Mbwa is named for the animal called “Cheetah” in English. This makes sense because it’s a fast tank. In the setting, many animals from Old Earth have become legendary because they either didn’t make it across the gulf of stars or died out after the planet was colonized. Their names live on, much as the names of dinosaurs do on our own world.
The Mbwa light tank is modeled after the 1950s era AMX-13 light tank made in France. The tank looks like something from science fiction. I was attracted to the unconventional design, which includes an oscillating turret. It has a three-man crew and a 75mm autoloading gun. Instead of the gun elevating inside the turret, the entire turret moves up and down. Like many 1950s innovations, this one didn’t catch on. An oscillating turret cannot be sealed against chemical weapons or radioactive fallout, which in our world were possible hazards of post-WW2 warfare. So far, neither the New Persians or Azanians have discovered the secrets of the atom and both have agreed to ban the use of chemical weapons in war.
The Mbwa is light on armor, and its gun is too weak to penetrate the frontal armor of the standard Persian tank, the Karar. Will the Mbwa‘s mobility and fast-firing cannon compensate for its shortcomings? We’ll see.
The submarine “Yunes” plays a part in the story. The boat is named for the dolphin, the marine mammal (not the fish.) The name is Persian.
For “The Tempest’s” storyline I needed an appropriate submarine from the same post-WW2 era as the rest of the military hardware found in the rest of the series. I wanted the submarine to be something special.
How could I justify an anachronistic submarine after closely following real-world developments from the 1950s so closely? It turns out I did.
The US Navy’s Barbel class was the peak of diesel-electric submarine development in the 1950s. Built between 1956 and 1959, they barely fit in my timeline for New Persia. With its radical streamlining and teardrop hull, pioneered on the research submarine Albacore, the Barbel class would have been the dominant
In the world of New Persia, the Persians have an advantage at sea. Will it matter? We shall see.