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The land that's produced almost as many great wrestlers as Parts Unknown.
"But let's forget that bullshit about the American Dream. The important thing is the Great Samoan Dream."
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The Independent State of Samoa (Samoan: Malo Saʻoloto Tutoʻatasi o Sāmoa) (do not confuse with the American Samoa, that's another thing altogether, though they share a language and some culture) is a nation of two big islands (well, comparatively) and two tiny islands between them. It is west of the American Samoa, by the way.

The first Europeans called the islands Navigator Islands because of how good the seafaring skills of the Samoans were. Of course, they were mostly hostile towards them. Sound familiar?

Germany and the United States claimed the territory until the beginning of the 20th century, when they split the islands: west for Germany, east for America. During the first World War it was taken by New Zealand; they administered it until 1962.

During said administration, a big part of the population (a fifth) died of influenza (probably arriving on a ship) and suffered what they called Black Saturday: on a Saturday they did manifestations pacifically (like they used to do, by the way)… only to be dispersed with machine guns. The New Zealand government has apologized for the incident, however.

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In 1962 they became the first Pacific country to declare independence as Western Samoa. In 1997 they changed to just Samoa. To the American Samoans however, they still are Western Samoans. After all, identity is a Serious Business.

In 2009, Samoa became the most recent country to switch the side of the road they drive on. However, bucking the trend of the 20th century, they switched to driving on the left. This made it easier to import cars to the country from the biggest auto manufacturers in the region, namely Japan and Australia. The change also made it easier for members of the large ethnic Samoan communities in both Australia and New Zealand to ship their used cars to Samoa.

As a last note, the place seems to be a breeding ground for professional wrestlers, though it must be said they also come from other islands of the region.

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The Samoan flag https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/samoa_flag_5928.png
The red field stands for courage. The canton is colored blue, representing freedom, containing Crux Australis, a common sight in the southern sky, colored white to represent purity.

The Samoan national anthem

Samoa, tula'i ma sisi ia lau fu'a, lou pale lea;
Samoa, tula'i ma sisi ia lau fu'a, lou palelea;
Vaai i na fetñ o loo ua agiagia ai;
Le faailoga lea o Iesu namaliu ai mo Samoa Oi!
Samoa e, uu mau lau pule ia faavavau.
'Aua e te fefe, o le Atua lo ta fa'a vae
O lota Sa'o lotoga,
Samoa, tula'i, ia agiagia lau
Fu'a lou pale lea.

Samoa, arise and raise your banner that is your crown!
Oh! see and behold the stars on the waving banner!
They are a sign that Samoa is able to lead.
Oh! Samoa, hold fast
Your freedom for ever!
Do not be afraid; as you are founded on God;
Our treasured precious liberty.
Samoa, arise and wave
Your banner that is your crown!

Government
  • Unitary parliamentary constitutional republic
    • O le Ao o le Malo: Tuimalealiifano Va'aletoa Sualauvi II
    • Prime Minister: Fiamē Naomi Mataʻafa
    • Assembly Speaker: Papali’i Li’o Taeu Masipau

Miscellaneous
  • Capital and largest city: Apia
  • Population: 202,506
  • Area: 2,842 km² (1,097 sq mi) (167th)
  • Currency: Samoan tālā ($) (WST)
  • ISO-3166-1 Code: WS
  • Country calling code: 685
  • Highest point: Mauga Silisili (1857 m/6,093 ft) (134th)
  • Lowest point: Pacific Ocean (10,911 m/35,797 ft) (-)
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