Thousands of years ago, Venus was terraformed to Earth-like conditions. It is politically divided into two nations, Ishtar and Aphrodite. Ishtar in Earth politics favors the Eurasian Dominate while Aphrodite is aligned with the Pan-American Collective. The two nations occasionally have shooting wars with each other, but the ruling Senate on Mercury (see Mercury in AELSS) usually sends in diplomats to resolve the conflicts. Ishtar is nominally ruled by a theoretically absolute monarch aided by an elite aristocracy, but the military and private corporations exercise tremendous powers. Aphrodite is also ruled by a hereditaty monarch and aristocracy, but commoners through an elected House of Citizens wield considerable power.