The Scope's Alton Haveri reports on the anniversary of Pochven's formation, the unveiling of the EDENCOM Memorial in Yulai, and a broadcast by Triglavian collaborator Seriatim Foucault.
In Other News
The Scope Reports on Rogue Drone Activity, AIR and CONCORD
The Scope's Lina Ambre reports on increasing rogue drone activity and attacks on researchers, as CONCORD intensifies its own efforts at tackling the menace of rogue drone infestations. The Scope's special report investigates rogue drone swarm attacks on AIR research posts, and can exclusively reveal active development of technology by CONCORD agencies and corporate interests.
Scope News Roundup
Above: New AIR Laboratories Station and HQ in orbit of Cistuvaert V
AIR Laboratories Stations Fully Operational as Investigations into Attacks Continue
Cistuvaert, Verge Vendor – Despite suffering rogue drone swarm attacks at their observatory posts, and a previous series of attacks on capsuleer training facilities by "unknown forces", the Association for Interdisciplinary Research is reporting that its new stations are "fully operational and secure." The technology and advanced training startup has refused to comment on the latest incidents affecting their research into rogue drones but a confidential source has confirmed AIR Laboratories have "initiated investigations into what went wrong and the lessons that may be learned."
In recent days, the organization has been more forthcoming regarding the reported attacks by unknown forces on AIR training centers. Vesper Calytrix, Vice President of AIR Operations, issued a statement confirming an ongoing investigation: "A number of AIR Laboratories facilities were recently targeted in an unconscionable attack. The AIR family mourns the tragic loss of life and extends its most heartfelt condolences to all those impacted by these events. We are cooperating with the appropriate law enforcement agencies while simultaneously conducting our own independent investigation into the attacks. Rest assured, the perpetrators behind these cowardly and inexcusable acts of violence will be brought to justice."
Akimaka Saraki Addresses Caldari State as New Chair of Chief Executive Panel
New Caldari Prime – Chairman Akimaka Saraki has addressed the Caldari State following his confirmation as permanent head of the Chief Executive Panel by the "Big 8" megacorporations at the annual State Industrial Planning Summit. The new CEP Chair's speech emphasized the duty of Caldari to the State, their corporations and their families, leaning heavily on imagery of the rise of the State out of the Caldari-Gallente War to its current prosperity under the megacorporations.
Akimaka Saraki first emerged onto the public stage within the State as a senior director within the Wiyrkomi Corporation responsible for infrastructure security. Saraki played a key role in the effort to fortify the planets of Samanuni system against Triglavian invasion. When the system itself was invaded, Saraki took personal command of the planetary defense of Samanuni VI as highest ranking corporate leader with military experience.
Saraki's role as a voice supporting the right of Caldari citizens to protest corporate malfeasance and incompetence cemented his reputation as a relatively liberal while patriotic figure at home. As an envoy to CONCORD, Saraki was also able to assist in averting open war during the EOM terror crisis. Shortly after this, with former CEP Chair Puok Kossinen disabled by his injuries, the CEP appointed Akimaka Saraki as Acting Chair of the CEP, elevating him to the leadership of the Caldari State.
The permanent confirmation of Saraki represents a political victory for the Combine TNR grouping of Hyasyoda, Ishukone, and Wiyrkomi – the so-called "Ocean Faction" of Caldari megacorporations. Chairman Saraki is understood to have been accorded special executive powers by the CEP to oversee the reform of Caldari State armed forces following the disastrous losses during the Triglavian invasions.
Above: New Halls of Liberation Station and Liberation Games Monument in Orbit of Matar, Pator System
Sanmatar and Thukker Chief Hold Official Opening Ceremony at Halls of Liberation
Pator, Heimatar – Sanmatar Maleatu Shakor and Thukker Chief Einnar Aeboul officiated at the formal opening ceremony of the new Halls of Liberation station orbiting Matar (Pator IV) yesterday. The new station will be operated by the Thukker Tribe for the next year due to their victory during the inaugural Liberation Games.
The station has been constructed as a place to remember the sacrifices of the Minmatar people during the Great Rebellion against Amarr rule. Although the Thukker Tribe will operate the station it is formally neutral territory in terms of the Seven Tribes of Matar. Overall responsibility for station security rests with the Thukker but large areas within the station are under Republic jurisdiction, and tribal and clan enclaves within the station have been established.
To fulfill the primary purpose of the Halls of Liberation station, it contains many memorial chambers and shrines to the memory of the heroes of the Great Rebellion. Of particular note is a large museum containing sections for each tribe, the civilization of the old Minmatar Empire, and the history of the Tribal Republic of the Minmatar. The station is perhaps more widely significant as the first in orbit to open for capsuleer traffic, leading to a large number of Minmatar corporations and agencies opening offices aboard the facility.
In Other News
The Scope Reports on Capsuleer Coalition Warfare and Caldari Union Day YC123
In Other News
Yulai, Genesis – There’s a new name on the lips of all those with their finger on the pulse of New Eden’s tech scene: the Association for Interdisciplinary Research (AIR). The latest arrival to join the cluster’s existing tableau of technology-driven corporations has made its first public statement with a series of bold proclamations.
Above: Combine TNR promotional simulation of new AIR station development
In a press release sent to media outlets on behalf of AIR CEO Elida Balashirian and COO Daisuke Ojala, the corporation lays bare its ambitions: "The Association for Interdisciplinary Research is proud to announce its debut onto New Eden’s corporate landscape. By pioneering groundbreaking technologies, AIR seeks to disrupt the status quo for the benefit of all mankind. Our philosophy is one of radical independence; we believe in science beyond the borders of empire. Where others see limits, AIR sees possibilities."
The statement elaborates on the corporation’s immediate plans, including the simultaneous launch of AIR Laboratories, a subdivision of AIR focused on scientific research and development across multiple industries, and the AIR Capsuleer Training Program. The program, overseen by AIR Laboratories, claims to provide aspiring pilots with everything they need to become successful capsuleers, from the acquisition of necessary skills to discovering their long-term career goals.
In response to the Scope’s request for additional comment, AIR’s VP of Operations, Vesper Calytrix said, "In order to democratize the notoriously expensive capsuleer conversion process, AIR will cover the cost of all necessary training and medical screening for qualified aspirants. AIR espouses the notion that the vast reaches of space exist for the enjoyment and exploration of all, regardless of one’s socioeconomic status."
AIR was founded by two entrepreneurs who split from their respective corporations to create their own: Elida Balashirian, formerly of the Sisters of EVE, and Daisuke Ojala, formerly of the Ishukone Corporation. Inquires with both SOE and Ishukone confirm that Balashirian and Ojala departed those organizations in good standing. Those corporate connections appear to have proved integral to kickstarting AIR's research projects.
Above: Combine TNR promotional simulation of new AIR station development
According to publicly accessible development plans, Combine TNR—the Caldari corporate consortium of which Ishukone is a member—is assisting in the rapid construction of several AIR stations across the cluster. Additionally, the Sisters of EVE confirmed to Scope that they will provide these new AIR facilities with equipment vital to AIR Laboratories’ operations.
"The Sisters of EVE are thrilled to see our former colleague, Elida Balashirian, make a splash with the public launch of AIR. We wish her the best in all her endeavors and look forward to collaborating with AIR in the future," said SOE spokesperson Errin Buelle.
Although sources for part of the new corporation’s funding can be gleaned through public filings with the Secure Commerce Commission (SCC), the available documentation leaves a significant chunk of AIR’s monetary wealth unaccounted for. A representative for the SCC responded to Scope’s inquiry with a terse, "No comment."
While it remains to be seen how far AIR’s sphere of influence extends, one thing is certain: the competition in New Eden’s corporate sector is about to heat up.
In Other News
Amarr Prime, Domain – The high holiday of Foundation Day is being celebrated across the Amarr Empire, with Avatar-class Titan battlegroups in parade formation in Amarr Prime and the capital systems of the six Royal Houses of the Empire. Foundation Day marks the construction of the Grand Basilica of St. Gheinok the First Prophet, at the heart of the Imperial City of Dam-Torsad, and is one of the most important religious holidays in the Empire's calendar.
Above: TES Jamyl the Liberator in "Imperial Seal" Parade Formation in Amarr Prime
Empress Catiz I has ordained a week of festivities while emphasizing the need for vigilance against "enemies of Holy Amarr that hide within, as well as those who threaten the peace of God from without." In light of recent SCC tax changes, the Theology Council has declared that additional tithes or offerings made on Foundation Day or during the week of festivities will garner the "special favor of Empress and God." Capsuleers loyal to the Amarr Empire are also celebrating Foundation Day with a traditional spaceship parade around the Emperor Family Station in Amarr system.
Above: Order of St. Tetrimon Fortress Monastery in Thebeka system
Despite crackdowns on dissent and the hunt for heretical cults and terrorist cells continuing, celebratory gatherings and movements of religious pilgrims are only slightly down as compared to previous years, with number comparable to those seen during last year's festival during the Triglavian Invasions. Even so, the various security forces of the Empire are maintaining a highly visible presence, and appear to be particularly attentive in monitoring the large movements of Imperial subjects and foreign tourists typical during such festivities.
Above: New Traumark Installation fortifications in Saminer system
Imperial and House militaries are also continuing to rebuild and redeploy their forces as the aftermath of both the Triglavian Invasions and the Equilibrium of Mankind terrorist plot settle back into diplomatic contention between the empires. The Imperial Navy is reported to have returned the oldest of the so-called "Mausoleum Fleets" activated at the height of the Invasions to storage and the care of the religious orders tasked with maintaining such reserves.
Royal Houses and military orders are also notable in having built up their forces and establishing new bases and fortifications. The Tash-Murkon Family has followed its development of a stargate link into the Stain region with the construction of a new, even more formidable fortress at the Traumark Installation in Saminer system. Under Ardishapur Family sponsorship, the militant Order of St. Tetrimon has also established a "fortress monastery" at the fringes of the Thebeka system, scene of a slave rebellion, pacification campaign and capsuleer conflict in which the order took an active role.
Above: New station under construction in orbit of Matar, Pator system
In Other News
Yulai, Genesis – Secure Commerce Commission facilities across New Eden have been breached by the Guristas, leading to followup raids on SCC Encounter Surveillance System reserve banks by the infamous pirate group. Chaotic scenes are reported at SCC facilities with security wide open as secure data and even ISK accounts have been exposed to attack by hackers and criminal gangs.
CONCORD's Inner Circle has demanded an investigation into these events just as an agreed reduction in funding for the New Eden Defense Fund, and consequent SCC tax and brokerage reductions have come into force. The locations of many SCC secure facilities have been exposed by the data leaks and CONCORD has rushed additional security forces and defense systems to these sites. While the additional defenses will deter many, the allure of the vast quanities of ISK still remaining in ESS reserve banks across New Eden is likely to prove irresistible for hardened criminals and capsuleer pirates.
Above: SCC Encounter Surveillance System in 9F-7PZ, Branch region
The Guristas raids on SCC secure key storage and ESS vaults are believed to have made off with trillions in ISK, valuable financial data, and security access codes. Security analysts are speculating that a series of recent raids by the Guristas have been a prelude to this "grand heist", allowing them to assemble a picture of certain locations, procedures and vital protocols ahead of the massive raids.
Just this last weekend a Guristas force raided a number of facilities in Autaris system, ostensibly to gain access to Caldari House of Records archives. However, in light of the massive multi-location heist of SCC facilities, the House of Records infiltration may itself have been misdirection as a number of CONCORD stations are located in Autaris.
Financial markets across New Eden are reeling at the news of the heists, just as SCC tax and brokerage changes come online. Such is the disruption to the systems that a significant quantity of ISK has been routed through tax rebate and claims systems, with huge numbers of citizens claiming this unexpected and unauthorized largesse. CONCORD and empire law-enforcement believe the rebate claims system has itself been hacked and activated en masse as a means for the Guristas to steal yet more ISK, with the side effect that it is leading to large payouts for all manner of citizens probably viewed as "a joke or useful public image propaganda by the Guristas."
In response to questions as he left an SCC briefing, Captain Marshal Sirdan xer Qosh, Amarr Delegate to the Inner Circle, commented, "These events only underline the correctness of the Imperial Court's view that CONCORD and EDENCOM have both been guilty of dreadful mismanagement of the interstellar financial and security systems." Ambassador Devan Malate of the Gallente Federation added, "While I often disagree with Captain Marshal xer Qosh, it must be said that in this case he has put his finger on the essence of the problem: CONCORD's bureaucracy is often as complacent as it is arrogant."
In Other News
The Scope's Galactic Hour with Ret Gloriaxx brings your roundup of the latest news from around the cluster as CONCORD's Inner Circle slashes the income of the New Eden Defense Fund and deadlocks over militia warzone peacekeeping, while tensions escalate in occupied territories.
Above: CONCORD HQ, Yulai System
Inner Circle Security Summit Reduces New Eden Defense Fund Income
Yulai, Genesis – CONCORD's Inner Circle has agreed to a provisional reduction in the funding provided to the New Eden Defense Fund via general taxation across the "Big 4" core empires and associated territories. Despite a strong appeal to maintain centralized funding levels from EDENCOM's Provost Marshal Kasiha Valkanir, delegates from the empires were insistent on the changes in an unusual show of unanimity.
Reports from sources close to the negotiations suggest that the consensus for reducing New Eden Defense Fund income is a case of disparate state interests aligning behind a particular measure, rather than an example of warming interstellar relations. In particular, the Amarr Empire and Gallente Federation have both shown signs of increasing impatience with the large burden placed on their economies by the New Eden Defense Fund and the New Eden Common Defense Initiative (EDENCOM).
Domestic outlays on infrastructure and military spending have increased considerably in recent months for the two largest star empires. The Gallente Federation has been embarked on a large program of public works focused on its periphery districts, while also accelerating military recruitment and rebuilding as the need to address more traditional threats reasserts itself in the aftermath of the Triglavian invasions. The Amarr Empire has also been spending vast sums on its own military rebuilding program, while pursuing a major security crackdown on heretics and dissidents.
For their own part, both the Caldari State and Minmatar Republic have been strong critics of the way in which the New Eden Defense Fund and EDENCOM have been administered, particularly in terms of the balance of fortifications along empire borders. The Minmatar Republic has previously stated its concern that EDENCOM has become a means for "aggressive state actors to advance their military objectives and consolidate gains contrary to the Yulai Accords," in a formula that is understood by all as an accusation of EDENCOM partiality for the Amarr Empire.
The Caldari State has chafed under the funding agreement since the Triglavian invasions resulted in a disastrous loss of systems, and EDENCOM policy has come in for heavy criticism from megacorporations keen to offer disgruntled Caldari citizens an alternative target for their outrage. EDENCOM's fortification and defense operations have also done little to address heavy disruption of Caldari space by Triglavian raiders, prompting Acting CEP Chair Akimaka Saraki to personally instruct the Caldari delegation to vote for the funding reductions.
Above: FDU Station in orbit of Intaki II
Diplomatic Wrangling Resumes as Militia Warzones Dominated by Amarr and Caldari Paramilitaries
Yulai, Genesis – Against a background of Amarr and Caldari paramilitary offensives, ongoing discussions at the Inner Circle on the status of the militia warzones continue to be fractious, despite the functional consensus achieved on the New Eden Defense Fund. CONCORD proposals for EDENCOM to carry out a "peacekeeping function" in the CONCORD Emergency Militia War Powers zones were dismissed, while a Gallente proposal to demilitarize temperate warzone planets and place their defenses under local control is considered "unworkable" by many observers.
Capsuleer militia forces aligned with the 24th Imperial Crusade recently achieved complete control of the Amarr-Minmatar warzone for several days, and continue to overwhelmingly dominate the zone. Similarly, Caldari State Protectorate militia forces have captured the vast majority of systems in the Caldari-Gallente warzone. Offensives by the Amarr and Caldari militias over the last 3 months have prompted militant factions within the Amarr Empire and Caldari State to advocate for renegotiation of the fundamental territorial agreements established by the Yulai Accords, alarming CONCORD diplomats and conflict monitors.
Federal Defense Union and Tribal Liberation Force militias have commenced their own counter-offensives, notably liberating the Intaki system after nearly two weeks of Caldari occupation, and pushing the 24th Imperial Crusade out of Helgatild. Caldari State megacorporations have been playing up militia gains as a sign of restored military fortunes, hoping to reduce unrest among worker populations as restrictions on assembly and movement continue to be lifted. Recruitment campaigns for Black Rise colonial developments and megacorporation "asset reclamation operations" in the occupied systems have also increased.
The Amarr Empire's House Sarum has continued to expand and heavily fortify its bases in the Eugides constellation of Metropolis, bordering the Bleak Lands. However, Amarr pressure is also being exerted in the Angils constellation, with reports from the long-occupied and well-populated Klogori system indicating Sarum-aligned forces based on the fourth planet have landed recon forces on the second, third and fifth planets. In a shift from its own more defense-oriented policies, House Ardishapur is also reported to have deployed its recon and survey forces to the occupied Hed constellation in Heimatar region using carriers based out of the heavily-fortified Ammatar Mandate system of Jark.
Above: Karin Midular, Ray of Matar monument in orbit of planet Matar
Amnesties Announced after Official Inauguration of Ray of Matar Memorial
Pator, Heimatar – Sanmatar Maleatu Shakor presided over last night's ceremonies to officially inaugurate the memorial statue of the late Chief Karin Midular, the Ray of Matar, in the Orbital Caravanserai of the Tribal Council. In a speech marking the life and achievements of the Ray of Matar, Sanmatar Shakor hailed the late Sebiestor Chief as "a visionary who saw that the Minmatar people are fully capable of once more fluorishing and surpassing the heights of our ancient forebears, and who worked tirelessly towards the day when we would do so in peace and prosperity."
The Sanmatar expressed his deep regret that Midular's commitment to peace had "not borne fruit in her lifetime" but noted that "this was not for want in her inestimable character nor lack of desire in our people for peace, rather war has always been thrust upon us by the violence and rapacity of Karin Midular's greatest foe in the quest for peace: the Amarr Empire!"
Following the official ceremonies, Sanmatar Shakor announced wide-ranging amnesties for "those who many years ago chose to fight for the freedom of the Minmatar by means that necessitated breaking the laws of the Republic and Tribes." The amnesties cover and exhaust all political and terrorist crimes committed by members of specified organizations more than five years ago. Organizations the amnesties apply to include the Bloody Hands of Matar and the Defiants, both organizations officially outlawed under successive Minmatar governments. Blanket proscription of membership of these organizations and several minor groups has also been lifted by order of the Tribal Council.
Above: House of Records Information Center, Autaris system
News in Brief
Guristas Pirates Implicated in Raid on House of Records Archives
Autaris, The Forge – Caldari authorities have alleged that the Guristas Pirates were behind a weekend raid on the House of Records Information Center in Autaris system. The raid is believed to have penetrated several secure datavaults in the facility. CONCORD sources have confirmed that a number of disruptive raids were also mounted on several CONCORD stations in the system. DED invesigators are reported to view the raids on the CONCORD stations as a distraction mounted while "the main Guristas infiltration force quietly penetrated the House of Records vaults."
While the Caldari Chief Executive Panel has ordered a full inventory of the data held at the Autaris House of Records archives, there has been no comment from the organization itself. Informed sources have claimed that staff from "Archive K" have arrived in Autaris to oversee the House of Records investigation. Archive K has long been rumored to be a secret intelligence and security branch of the House of Records.
DERAIL Forces Arrest Hundreds on Charges of "Conspiracy to Develop Illegal AIs"
Eugales, Placid – CONCORD's Department for Enforcement of Restrictions on Artificial Intelligence and Life (DERAIL) has reported the arrest of "several hundred conspirators" in an alleged plot to "develop illegal AIs" in raids across the Eugales system. The majority of arrests were apparently carried out aboard the Ezochi Okami, a mobile submarine colony platform operating in the shallows of the Eugales VI storm planet's oceans. Raids were also carried out elsewhere on Eugales VI, and other planets and stations of the Eugales system.
In related news, the Lai Dai Protection Service's 203rd Combined Asset Protection Regiment has arrived in Eugales to carry out "asset reclamation operations" while the system is under Caldari militia occupation. Reports indicate the 203rd has landed a team on the first moon of Eugales V, having filed a notice with the Caldari Business Tribunal that it will carry out "research and survey of anomalies in Eugales system."
Quafe Corporation Agrees Lease Extension and Export Tariffs in Bosboger
Bosboger, Heimatar - In a rare deal concerning Minmatar Republic and Amarr Empire interests, the Quafe Corporation has agreed a lease extension on its raw material harvesting colonies on Bosboger I with the Minmatar Republic, while also agreeing a regime of export tariffs from the planet with the Amarr Empire. The agreements are understood to guarantee the security of Quafe colonies and convoys in the militia warzone system, an important source of materials for Quafe manufacturing installations across the Huvilma constellation.
A Quafe spokesperson said, "We've noticed a significant increase in conflict in the area, and took steps to secure our business interests with our partners in both the Empire and Republic. Bosboger I is an important source of organic materials used by our factories and we expect an increased harvest this year. With transport links secured by these agreements, we are also considering an adventure tourism program as there has been a noticeable increase in the intensity and variety of planetary aurora activity recently."
In Other News
Matar, Pator – Vast numbers of Minmatar across the Republic are celebrating the 143rd anniversary of the start of the Great Rebellion in BYC20. The festivities are being accompanied by nearly two weeks of celebratory Liberation Games, in which the seven tribes' capsuleers will compete for the honor of determining which tribe will control a new station in orbit of Matar for the first year of operations. The Tribal Council has determined that the new station to mark Minmatar liberation will have its administration determined each year in the games..
Above: Liberation Day Holovisual Broadcast by Sanmatar Maleatu Shakor
The Tribal Council has also ordered the broadcast of an address by Sanmatar Maleatu Shakor including a holovisual reproduction of scenes from the old Minmatar Empire, Amarr invasion and occupation, and the Great Rebellion. Minmatar archaeologists, historians, and cultural experts were heavily involved in the creation of the holovid by the Republic's top cinematics circle, the Grar'Olro Lightpainters. As so often in the past, Minmatar capsuleers are holding their own celebratory events today, beginning in the Pator system at 17.30 New Eden standard time.
As with previous Liberation Day celebrations, a number of fleets representing the Seven Tribes of Matar have assembled in parade formation across Minmatar space. Participants in the festivities are free to visit these fleets and celebrate with fireworks. The Liberation Games themselves also include a tour of key sites in the history of the Great Rebellion and the Minmatar Republic, including the Eternal Flame and the site of the final victory at the Battle of Fort Kavad.
The Tribal Council's new Orbital Caravanserai has also been completed, with a memorial statue to the late Ray of Matar, Prime Minister and Sebiestor Chief Karin Midular under construction. The Brutor Tribe have also sponsored and begun construction of a statue of the late Captain Karishal Muritor, former Republic Fleet commander and leader of the Defiants freedom fighter group.
Above: RFS Jormal Kehok parade fleet in Altrinur – Thukker Mix station in background
Liberation Games events include special semi-holographic environments and combat drones designed to re-enact key battles from the Great Rebellion, the Battle of Auner and the Mahti Jailbreak. Participants in these sites will play the part of the Minmatar rebels, and other sites celebrate the efforts of Minmatar resistance fighters to gain essential intelligence on Amarr operations during the rebellion.
In addition, the Tribal Council intends to authorize those who have completed the tour of Minmatar history to enter the Abyssal Proving Grounds as part of the Liberation Games. Sources close to Sanmatar Maleatu Shakor suggest that tenuous and erratic diplomatic contact with the Triglavian Collective has been attempted, and led to an "opportunity to show the Triglavians what the best Minmatar capsuleer fighters can do." The Scope's sources indicate that an Abyssal Proving Ground using Rifter-class frigates in a "glorification proving" will open on July 16th.
Members of the Minmatar military circles who sent troops and pilots to support EDENCOM efforts during the invasion are reported to have reacted to this development with "mixed views." In one bizarre incident following the news, a Khumaak displaying a holographic image of the EDENCOM logo was planted in the grounds of the Great Caravanserai with a message in Kul-Brutor script tied to the haft reading: "We have already shown the Trigs what we can do!"
Above: Tribal Council Orbital Caravanserai in orbit of Matar – Karin Midular memorial under construction
Occupation and Border Tensions in Amarr-Minmatar Warzone
Despite the ongoing occupation of numerous Minmatar systems in the militia warzone by Amarr forces, with fresh gains recently scored by the 24th Imperial Crusade, the Tribal Council's order to reinforce key planets and bases is being carried out as best it can by stealth and with light squadrons of ships. The role of the Thukker Tribe in delivering essential supplies via wormhole and drop to Floseswin IV has been noted in particular. Operations on Floseswin IV itself continue as remaining Amarr forces continue a guerilla action, supported by drops from the Imperial Navy and occasional bombing operations.
Above: Minmatar defensive positions in Audesder system – tensions high along border with Mandate
The besieged planet of Floseswin IV remains a matter of serious concern to the Republic's military planners as intelligence indicates continuing rebuilding of Amarr fleets and their deployment to positions along the border. Republic Fleet forces are themselves building up at the Amo-Hror and Abudban-Odatrik defense zones. Tensions also remain high at the border with the Ammatar Mandate, with the highly militarized Audesder and Kenobanala systems reinforced by the Minmatar Republic and Amarr Empire respectively.
Amarr conduct over Floseswin IV continues to divide military experts, with outside observers unclear on the driving force behind continued interest in the planet. The opaque politics of the Imperial Court have become even more difficult to analyse as the ongoing hunt for heretics and subversives occupies the ruling nobility. House Sarum and House Ardishapur have notably increased their military forces and established a number of new bases, with co-operation at an all time high between two powers that have often been rivals for influence over militant and traditionalist factions within the Amarr Empire.
Above: Komo IX Under Perun Clade Occupation – Caldari Resistance Continues
In Other News
The Scope's Galactic Hour with Ret Gloriaxx brings your roundup of the latest news from around the cluster as new routes between the stars open across New Eden, and the core empires continue to focus on security and rebuilding.
Newly Constructed Stargates Come Online and Open for Traffic Across New Eden Empires
Yulai, Genesis – New stargate routes were opened by each of the core empires yesterday, following final assembly work facilitated by the operations of each empire's logistics service and capsuleers participating in resource gathering operations. The activation of the new routes took place simultaneously as agreed under the Stargates Enabling Treaty (SCC Oversight, Navigation & Funding) YC123 signed by the CONCORD powers.
The newly established routes link the following systems:
Activation of the new gates was achieved without major incident, although localized space-time topology effects inhibited the use of microwarpdrive engines for some hours following the establishment of the gate links. Some have speculated that the simultaneous activation of four gate pairs combined with the disruption to New Eden's background space-time topology caused by Triglavian stellar manipulation could have caused such unforeseen effects. Gate crews reported normal operations of the gates themselves and so far there have been no reports of abnormal Triglavian activity in the gate systems.
Above: New Caldari stargate with rings of Abhazon VIII in background
Chief Executive Panel Agree to Appoint Akimaka Saraki Acting Chairperson
New Caldari Prime – Deadlock on the Caldari State's Chief Executive Panel was broken this morning with the appointment of Akimaka Saraki as acting Chairperson of the CEP. The ruling council of Caldari State megacorporations has been without a chairperson since CEP Chair Puok Kossinen was injured in the bombing of the CEP Spire in Landfall City on New Caldari Prime.
The appointment of acting Chair Saraki is a coup for the Ocean Faction of Hyasyoda, Ishukone and Wiyrkomi corporations, representing a deal that saw the Mountain Faction of Kaalakiota and Sukuuvestaa agree to back an appointee from the Wiyrkomi megacorporation. Most recently serving as Caldari State delegate to the CONCORD Inner Circle, Saraki was notable in helping avert a major conflict due to the Equilibrium of Mankind crisis. His service during the Triglavian Invasions is also held to be a distinct advantage, with his role overseeing the fortification of Wiyrkomi holdings in the Samanuni system and personal command of the planetary defense of the sixth planet contributing to the successful repulsion of Triglavian forces.
Akimaka Saraki is also the son-in-law of Akari Seituoda, retired CEO of Wiyrkomi-Seituoda Heavy Industries and a member of the dynasty that controls the Wiyrkomi megacorporation. Akari Seituoda has been outspoken in his acknowledgement of the basis for worker grievances during the recent unrest in the State, and Saraki is known to be sympathetic to those outraged by the failings of the military and corporate security forces.
The appointment of Saraki as acting CEP Chair may indicate that the Ocean Faction has persuaded the stability- and security-oriented Mountain Faction to take a path of reform and reconciliation with aggrieved worker populations. Regardless of whether that is so, the Forest Faction of CBD, Lai Dai and NOH has undoubtedly been dealt a blow, and may have to tread carefully to avoid the Ocean-Mountain axis solidifying into a permanent alliance.
Above: New Gallente stargate in Eggheron patrolled by Federation Customs
Federation Senate Passes New Appropriations Bill to Fund Aguard Infrastructure Ambitions
Villore, Essence – The Gallente Federation Senate has pass a new bill enhancing the federal infrastructure budget and making new appropriations specifically for security projects aimed at fulfilling the promises of President Celes Aguard to "unify periphery and core of the Federation through concrete action."
The passage of the bill is believed to have been contingent on the backing of powerful blocs emphasizing the independence of planetary states and nations within the Federation. There are rumors that President Aguard has agreed to veto the so-called "Bellaron Bill" to abolish and outlaw capital punishment as a concession to these political forces.
Senator Suvio Bellaron's capital punishment abolition bill passed the full senate before the election of President Aguard, becoming an election issue when President Jacus Roden opted to leave the decision of enactment or veto to his successor. Since President Aguard's election the bill has been the subject of a study into the "feasibility of implementation in consideration of the social, cultural and political independence of member states" at the President's request. Senate procedure committees have regularly voted to keep the bill "active" to avoid it falling into abeyance for lack of enactment.
President Celes Aguard may have been able to parlay her promises for infrastructure and security investment to some of the more liberal senate blocs into their acquiescence on the capital punishment matter. Senator Bellaron appears to have lost the argument with his political allies from Intaki and greater Placid, together with some of the Labor-Populist bloc. Seen to vote for the abolition bill procedurally, these groups were evidently unwilling to hold up the infrastructure bill, effectively freeing President Aguard to veto the capital punishment measures.
Above: New Minmatar stargate Pakhshi system, tenth planet in background
Tribal Council Votes to Increase Anti-Warclone Measures, Fund Clandestine Units, and Raise Volunteer Armies
Matar, Pator – Minmatar Republic security dominated the latest meeting of the Tribal Council with measures to combat renegade warclones, fund more clandestine operations, and raise new volunteer armies for the defense of Floseswin IV, and liberation of Skarkon and Krirald. Despite a lengthy session that observers described as "heated at times" the package of measures gained the consent of the entire Tribal Council.
Chief Acassa Midular of the Sebiestor Tribe expressed her concerns at an "ever-expanding security state that imperils the freedoms and rights of our clans and tribes", and was joined in many of her objections to several initial proposals by Chief Eleca Valkanir of the Nefantar, Chief Jeoran Setul of the Starkmanir, and Chief Isardsund Urbral of the Vherokior. The Brutor Tribe's Chief Wkumi Pol also objected specifically to CONCORD agencies being given increased powers within tribal territories.
Rejection of sweeping rights for CONCORD's SARO "Red Troop" Anti-Warclone and DERAIL Anti-AI units to enter tribal and clan territories "under Republic Security Services supervision" was inevitable with five tribes objecting to such measures. However, Chief Tenerhaddi Dykon of the Krusual and Chief Einar Aeboul of the Thukker were able to win the day on enhanced investigatory powers for the RSS Anti-Warclone units. The Brutor and Starkmanir Tribes were persuaded of this need by the rise in renegade warclones "associating with Amarr and Triglavian slavers and invaders".
Funding for clandestine units able to operate against increasing pirate and illegal slaver operations, as well as infiltrate occupied territories in Pochven and the militia warzones, was less controversial. The Council also passed funding and enabling measures to provide for raising further volunteer armies for the defense of Floseswin IV, liberation of Skarkon and Krirald, and support of militia and liberation operations generally.
Above: New Amarr stargate in F7-ICZ system
News in Brief
Amarr Campaign Against Heresy Continues as Holders Fervently Declare Faith and Loyalty
Amarr Prime – Despite limited external comment and numerous key cities remaining closed to outsiders, it is clear that the Amarr Empire's campaign against internal dissent and heresy continues unabated. The Scope's own sources suggest that the work of the Ministry of Internal Order, Theology Council, and Order of St. Tetrimon is actually increasing in intensity. The Royal Houses of Amarr and all Major Houses are prosecuting their own vigorous campaigns, while the Minor Holder Houses are allegedly "competing with one another to profess their faith and total loyalty to the Throne of Holy Amarr."
The signs are that the ongoing campaign is the largest and most intense hunt for heretics and purge of disloyal elements within the Amarr Empire since the military action against the so-called "Refusards", during the reign of Empress Jamyl I. The MIO, Theology Council and, extraordinarily, the Order of St. Tetrimon have been given powers to draw forces from local militias and significant authority over Major House troops. They are also empowered to request Royal House and Imperial Guard forces be deployed. Leaving no stone unturned, the various ministries, councils and orders have also been given authority to investigate one another under supervision of the Privy Council. This last measure is perhaps the clearest signal of how seriously the Amarr Empire is taking the hunt in the aftermath of the EOM crisis and following years of heretic outrages seeming to go unchecked.
Intaki Assembly, Senate Subcommittee, and Security Council Meetings Scheduled
Intaki, Placid – The Intaki Assembly has agreed a schedule for meetings with the Senate Subcommitte on Shipping & Security Franchising and the Federal Security Council. The series of meetings are intended to resolve outstanding issues with the proposal from the Intaki Assembly to allocate the Intaki star system Shipping & Security Franchise to a group including the Intaki Space Police and Intaki Commerce corporations.
President Celes Aguard is understood to have made it a priority to arrive at an agreement that "respects the rights and privileges of the Intaki Assembly while protecting the security of the Federation," according to a source close to the talks. Another source has indicated to the Galactic Hour with Ret Gloriaxx that Intaki senate support for the President's infrastructure bill was a "factor that helped break the deadlock."
Above: Skarkon II under Triglavian occupation
Inter-Clade War on Skarkon II Rages as Capsuleers Struggle for Supremacy in Pochven
Skarkon, Pochven – Triglavian inter-clade warfare between the Svarog and Veles Clades has been reported once more to have increased in intensity and expanded across the ravaged planet. Reports from observers on Skarkon suggest the latest phase of conflict between the warring clades has literally spilled over into the seas of Skarkon II. Littoral zones and the continental shelf waters of the major seas have been the scenes of furious Svarog Clade activity in response to large numbers of "drops" of unknown cargo into the sea by Veles Clade ships. A degree of retreat from previous land zones overrun by the Svarog has ensued as the occupation force has redistributed forces to deal with the new aquatic front.
Relatively untouched population centers in the hinterlands of the primary landmass are reported to be using the unexpected breathing space to continue evacuation where possible and fortification underground where impractical. The original major cities of the Skarkon II urban-industrial district of Skardisaad are largely abandoned by civilians but continue to be the scene of fierce fighting between the Skarkon Tribal Resistance Army, renegade warclones, and significant numbers of Svarog war machines overseen by "Siege Elites", a term that has come to be universally applied to Svarog's mechanized and heavy infantry troikas.
As Skarkon II continues to live up to its long reputation as the "Snake Pit of New Eden", capsuleers are on the move across Pochven with self-styled "kybernaut" supporters of the Triglavians in conflict with empire and EDENCOM loyalist forces. Independent capsuleer corporations and alliances are also increasingly struggling for some degree of supremacy in the Triglavian region since "ideological proving" lock outs on most conduit gates were lifted. Increasing conflict between the Triglavian Clades has been speculated to have led the Convocation of Triglav to dispense with the lock outs on all but the "home systems" of each clade. Others claim AEGIS information warfare commandos sabotaged the lock out systems but have no explanation for why the Triglavians have not seen fit to restore them.
Khanid Purges Continue as Royalist Troops Deployed Across Kingdom
Parses, Khanid – While participating in the general Amarr Empire purge of heresy, the Khanid Kingdom continues to take the opportunity to clamp down in territories seen as less than loyal to the authority of King Farokh Khanid III and his vassal nobles. Large numbers of the feared Chesm Khan secret police and their powerful security troop divisions have been deployed across the Kingdom, backed by detachments of the King's own Royal Guard in several instances. Particularly problematic holdouts of "disloyalty and impiety against the order of things" have seen landings of the even more feared Asbara Cyber Knights, military units renowned for dispassionate brutality across the Kingdom. The notorious 7th Asbara Cyber Knights under Sardar Marshal Soshan Fayez are reported to have landed in force on Bashyam IV in the Royal Duchy of Fekhoya to "crush all rebellion be it in action, word or symbol."
Fekhoya is a direct holding of the Royal House of Khanid but is reported to be a center for so-called "One Crown Unificationists", a movement backing claimants of Holder authority said to flow directly from the Emperor Family and Throne of Amarr. Such politics are highly incendiary within the Kingdom but have been growing in the years since the Khanid state rejoined Amarr as a "Kingdom of the Empire". Ironically, the theological and political basis of the One Crown movement is reportedly in conflict with the doctrines of Royal Demesnes and the Privy Council within the Imperial Rite. The Khanid House has thus used the current atmosphere within the Amarr Empire to purge its disaffected elements.
In Other News
The Scope's Galactic Hour with Ret Gloriaxx brings your roundup of the latest news from around the cluster as the CONCORD powers begin new stargate construction projects, while mopping up of the Equilibrium of Mankind terrorist cult continues in the core empires.
Above: Stargate construction site in Eggheron system, Solitude region
New Stargates Under Construction Following Treaty Signed by CONCORD Empires in Yulai
Yulai, Genesis – New stargate construction efforts are underway in locations across New Eden following the signing of a new treaty between the CONCORD powers providing for funding, navigation rights and trade agreements relevant to the new links. Negotiations between the four core empires and CONCORD are understood to have been carried out in some secrecy over the last few months owing to the political situation in several of the empires being "fraught", as one source close to the process put it.
The Gallente Federation was the only empire to have openly signalled its intent to build a new stargate as a direct connection between the Solitude region and the main contiguous territory of the Federation. As a longstanding campaign promise of President Celes Aguard, the Federation had been clear that it would proceed with what amounts to an internal territorial link, and observe the provisions of the Yulai Accords and Convention in doing so. Its planned link will establish paired stargates in Kenninck, Placid and Eggheron, Solitude. From the Federation's point of view the effect of such a gate connection will be to bypass the nullsec Intaki Syndicate, and offer an alternative to the lengthy route via Genesis and Aridia.
The other core empires had been known to be at least exploring various mooted stargate projects, with the most anticipated being the restoration of a direct civilian stargate link between the Amarr Empire and the Caldari State. With the loss of the Amarr system of Niarja to the Triglavian Collective, the previous link had been severed and a new program of surveying for viable new links has evidently been carried out by both the Empire and State. It is reported that many previously viable connections from the Caldari State to Amarr Empire have become "dangerously unstable", apparently an effect of the large number of systems in Caldari territory affected by Triglavian stellar manipulation. A link between Hykotta in the Forge and Ahbazon in Genesis had been established as the best candidate, and work is now underway in both systems.
Above: Ruins of the Traumark Installation, Saminer System, Tash-Murkon region
As well as strongly backing politically and in some measure financially assisting the Caldari State's stargate project, the Amarr Empire has chosen to expand its options at its periphery with a construction program that will connect Saminer, Tash-Murkon with F7-ICZ, Stain. Personally ordered by Empress Catiz I, the connection will open the way from the territory of House Tash-Murkon to yet more outer regions. Observers of Imperial court politics have noted that Empress Catiz has positioned the Royal House of her birth at the leading edge of future Amarr expansion through its control of rights over the Providence region and the new stargate project to the Stain region. Saminer system itself holds particular significance for the Tash-Murkon Family as the site of the ruined Traumark Installation that served as a guardian fortress on the edges of their territory before it was destroyed by Sansha's Nation.
The Minmatar stargate project has perhaps been the greatest surprise to observers of interstellar relations, with the construction of a stargate from Irgrus in Metropolis to Pakhshi in Genesis set to establish a direct route from the Minmatar Republic to the CONCORD-administered Sanctum constellation. While memories of the "Elder Fleet" assault on the CONCORD headquarters in YC110 are still strong for many, the last decade of Minmatar diplomacy has largely been supportive of CONCORD. While CONCORD is viewed with suspicion by large numbers of Minmatar, as many others appear to consider it a broadly positive force by the evidence of opinion polling. This balanced view is in contrast with a growing belief among the Minmatar public that EDENCOM is an "Amarr conspiracy" ultimately aimed at seizing Minmatar territories.
Above: Minmatar stargate construction site in Irgrus system
The particular choice of a Minmatar stargate link from Irgrus to Pakhshi appears to have been pushed by the powerful Sebiestor Tribe with the support of the Vherokior Tribe and Republic Justice Department. The diplomatically-minded Sebiestor and Vherokior have often emphasized the benefits of closer co-operation with CONCORD. The Republic Justice Department is also known to be keen to counter-balance the growing influence of clandestine and militarist elements in the Republic by promoting a law-enforcement and counter-terrorism approach to the problem of slave trading and raiding. Reports from sources in the Tribal Council indicate that the Sebiestor Tribe has won the right to establish a "circle" organization drawn from Sebiestor clans to operate the new stargates.
Sources with knowledge of the CONCORD Inner Circle negotiations on the "Stargates Enabling Treaty (SCC Oversight, Navigation & Funding) YC123" have confirmed that the Gallente Federation strongly backed the use of the New Eden Defense Fund as a source of general financing for the SCC elements of the project, and for a large grant to the Minmatar Republic. The Amarr Empire conditioned its support for that measure on the alleviation of existing sanctions on all traffic using the new Hykkota to Ahbazon link in their journeys regardless of their origins and endpoints. The Federation is understood to have conceded this point following the agreement of lucrative concessions for the politically influential TransStellar Shipping corporation with respect to all new stargate links. The Caldari State agreed on the condition of a similar grant for its own stargate project. While registering a formal objection to the sanctions loophole, the Minmatar Republic did not attempt to block the treaty, no doubt due to the huge financing boost its project will receive from the New Eden Defense Fund.
Above: EOM Avatar-class Titan fires doomsday weapon against Kahah III
DED Reports Equilibrium of Mankind Fleets "Completely Degraded" as Anti-EOM Operations Redoubled on Planets
Yulai, Genesis – Despite the focus on the new stargates treaty, anti-EOM mopping up operations were also discussed at the CONCORD Inner Circle's latest meeting, with it being reported to the council that the DED has assessed the Equilibrium of Mankind's capital fleet and construction capability as "completely degraded beyond practical operational capabilities." The DED's Star Marshal Kjersidur Elladall also emphasized that extensive EOM infrastructure seizure operations conducted in conjunction with independent capsuleers and local navies had recovered "considerable quantities of technical data, equipment, and intelligence."
As Marshal Elladall further reported, CONCORD has extensively shared its analysis of recovered technology and data with the empires, "in compliance with the Yulai Accords and most importantly to facilitate development of counter-measures and security advancements for the cynosural navigation and counter-cynosural defense nets of the CONCORD signatory states." The DED Star Marshal also commented on the status of Kahah III, the Khanid Kingdom planet struck by multiple directed-energy doomsday blasts from an EOM Avatar-class Titan. "DED and other CONCORD agencies naturally offered all assistance to Khanid authorities but security forces there opted to close the planet and decline this offer. We understand that the planet's climate is well on the way to stabilizing but it is clear that widespread devastation was caused by the weapon strikes themselves, together with multiple powerful supercell storms induced by the massive localized energies introduced to the planetary atmosphere."
With the destruction of the main force and capability of the EOM terror fleets, the primary focus of the empires has been on operations to counter the ongoing threat of infiltrators and terrorist cells. The Gallente Federation's FIO is engaged in an extensive effort with other federal and member state security forces to determine the extent of EOM infiltration. While much media attention has been focused on the possibility that the EOM were responsible for the YC122 election attacks, that has been downplayed by the investigative commission chaired by former president Souro Foiritan. For his own part, Chief Director Mentas Blaque of the FIO has issued no comment while General Thoun Gaterou of the Special Department of Internal Investigations continues the hunt for EOM operatives.
The Amarr Empire has been characteristically silent as to the internal security measures it is taking but reports from across its vast territories indicate a massive "righteous purge of abominable heresy" being orchestrated by multiple agencies, including the Imperial Guard, Theology Council, Ministry of Internal Order, and the Order of St. Tetrimon. Unconfirmed reports claim the entire establishment and estates of the Fraternity of St. Venefice have been seized. Many previously tolerated "heterodox" cults, orders and societies have also been subjected to various levels of investigation, seizure and suppression. The police and militias of the Royal and Major Holder Houses of Amarr are also carrying out extensive hunts for EOM infiltration. The hunt to capture or establish the fate of infamous Khanid warlord and EOM agent Alar Chakaid is also believed to be a top priority for multiple agencies of the Amarr Empire.
The Minmatar Republic continues to focus its efforts on the "Black Dagger" murders and terrorist outrages it believes to be linked to the EOM's campaign to destabilize the cluster and pitch it into war. The RJD, RSS and all individual tribes' marshal and police organizations have been directed by the Tribal Council to fully co-operate on the investigation and hunt for EOM terrorists. Caldari State investigations have been disrupted by considerable administrative chaos and a distinct lack of co-operation between megacorporations as a factional struggle for power in the State appears to be heating up. Throughout the crisis and aftermath, CONCORD agencies have been notably present across all the empires in "co-operative and liaison roles" with the increased presence of such notorious security forces as SARO and DERAIL seemingly tolerated alongside AEGIS and the traditional DED police missions.
Above: Battle to Stop EOM Terror Attack Over Kahah III
News in Brief
Caldari State Megacorporations Maintain State of Emergency as CEP Remains Deadlocked
New Caldari Prime – The Caldari State's emergency measures in the wake of the New Caldari Prime CEP spire bombing continue to be in effect as the aftermath of the terrorist attack remains unresolved. Despite having multiple offsite and offworld clone backups, CEP Chair Puok Kossinen has not returned to his post due to the recovery of his living body in the wreckage of CEP Spire. In an apparent fluke, the CEP Chairperson survived the bombing but is reportedly in "a deep coma with indications of significant brain trauma." While Kossinen is reported as likely to recover after extensive therapy, the irony of his survival preventing a backup clone activation has had real effects on the Caldari State's crisis wracked politics.
The "Big 8" megacorporations are reported to be in "deadlock" as to a way forward for the CEP, with the powerful "Mountain Faction" of Kaalakiota and Sukuuvestaa apparently undecided between themselves as to which candidate to back for a provisional or even new permanent CEP Chairperson. The diametrically opposed "Ocean" (Ishukone, Hyasyoda, and Wiyrkomi) and "Forest" (CBD, Lai Dai, and NOH) factions lack the votes to push their own favored candidates. Reports of incidents involving "rioter vandalism" or "corporate security abuses" continue to be exchanged by worker and executive groups on various Caldari State communications channels despite the state of emergency, adding to a widespread sense that the "Big 8" have lost control.
Inter-Clade Warfare Rages on Skarkon II as Svarog Scour Planet for Minmatar General Kril Efrit
Skarkon, Pochven – War-torn Skarkon II continues to suffer the ravages of high-intensity warfare as the Triglavian Veles and Svarog Clades continue to wage apparently unrestrained war against one another for control of the planet. The reason that Veles Clade places such importance on contesting control of regions of a planet that lies outside its "Krai Veles" zone within Pochven, and firmly within "Krai Svarog", remains a mystery but their forces continue to assault Svarog positions despite a relatively limited presence.
Svarog Clade has apparently poured sufficient forces into Skarkon II's warzone to counter Veles Clade while pursuing an increasingly determined hunt for Skarkon Tribal Resistance Army commander Kril Efrit. Independent analysis of intercepted Svarog communications traffic has suggested the Clade is "obsessed" with Efrit. Other interpretations variously claim "admiration", "detestation", or "critically engaged evaluation" of Valklear General Efrit. Despite Svarog Clade recently "levelling a mountain with antimatter weapons" in an attempt to destroy the STRA and eliminate Efrit, sporadic reports have indicated the general survived and continues to lead significant elements of the Minmatar resistance.
In Other News
Kahah, Khanid – Equilibrium of Mankind capital ships subjecting the planet of Kahah III to railgun and superweapon bombardment have been destroyed in battle with capsuleers and Royal Khanid Navy forces. In a serious blow to the EOM, an Avatar-class titan piloted by the notorious Khanid Warlord Alar Chakaid was destroyed as it rained fire down on the planet. The supporting fleet of EOM Revelation-class dreadnoughts were also destroyed by forces responding to the devastation of Kahah III.
The Amarr Empire and Khanid Kingdom have condemned Alar Chakaid as a heretic and repudiated his actions as "grossest heresy, terrorism, and crimes against creation." At present it is unclear if Alar Chakaid has escaped once more. Orders to hunt down and eliminate the EOM cult conspirators have been issued by Empress Catiz I to all houses, ministries and branches of the Amarr military. Royal Khanid Navy units are conducting search and rescue operations across Kahah III but there are reports of considerable destruction in the agricultural centers hit by the superweapon blasts and accompanying railgun fire.
CONCORD's Inner Circle is meeting to consider this latest attack and review all available evidence and intelligence gathered from previous attacks, particularly in the light of this event, and the new information and evidence it provides. A broadcast on selected GalNet channels has also been made by a figure that is purported to be Ocilan Ardishapur, the founder and leader of the EOM. Amarr authorities have considered Ocilan Ardishapur dead for at least a thousand years but it is known that captured EOM cultists claim he lives and still leads the organization.
Kahah, Khanid – An EOM capital fleet, reportedly consisting of several dreadnoughts and a titan, has been sighted in orbit of Kahah III. There are unconfirmed reports of a superweapon being fired at a target on the planet.
Kahah III is a holding in the Khanid Kingdom dedicated principally to food production and has a large population of commoners and slaves. A major slave rebellion flared up on Kahah III two and a half years ago, following a series of terrorist attacks using a weaponized version of the "Deathglow" narcotic. The rebellion was put down brutally by Khanid Kingdom forces including troops under the command of the notorious Khanid Warlord Alar Chakaid.
A recent Brutor Vanguard attack on the Inis-Ilix Theology Council station is believed to have removed Chakaid and his associate Orlon Zashev from prison cells where they were awaiting trial for war crimes by the Amarr authorities. This incident was overshadowed by the recent series of attacks on planets by mercenary dreadnought squadrons but some observers have connected it to these events. If a major attack against Kahah III is underway such speculations may well be vindicated.
Above: Renegade dreadnoughts in battle over Tierijev IV
Yulai, Genesis – The Minmatar Republic's Ambassador Keitan Yun has presented evidence to CONCORD's Inner Circle indicating that the Equilibrium of Mankind cult is behind several recent dreadnought attacks on planets. Ambassador Yun was accompanied by Hetman General Kanth Filmir, the latter testifying that the evidence was assembled with the co-operation of "loyal Minmatar and allied Gallente capsuleers."
The evidence presented paints a picture of EOM infiltrators in a number of mercenary companies mounting the attacks in Tanoo, Girani-Fa and Tierijev. General Filmir confirmed that the Republic Security Services had managed to penetrate the encryption of a number of logs and encoded data fragments. While in each case the contents of these logs "indicated the mercenaries in question were operating under the orders of national governments" it was determined that the signatures of known EOM encryption and forging methods were in evidence in the recovered materials.
"We strongly believe that the Amarr doomsday cult known as 'the Equilibrium of Mankind' is behind these attacks and is attempting to foment a wider war between the CONCORD powers," stated Ambassador Yun. The Gallente Federation's Ambassador Devan Malate confirmed that the Federal Intelligence Office was analyzing material it had received and that the Federation shared the conclusions of the Minmatar Republic.
Responding for the Amarr Empire, Captain Marshal Sirdan xer Qosh noted that "loyal Amarr capsuleers" had provided evidence from Tanoo that corroborated the indications of EOM involvement after deep analysis by "Amarr inquisitorial authorities." Questioned by Ambassador Yun over "reports of evidence gathered in Floseswin by Amarr paramilitaries", Marshal xer Qosh responded that "such materials have been classified secret due to ongoing military operations in the militia warzone."
The Caldari State's Delegate Akimaka Saraki stated that the position of the Caldari State is that the evidence "shows a clear trail to the Equilibrium of Mankind cult, and our own investigators are pursuing the theory of cult terrorist infiltration into the Expert Intervention mercenary company."
The Equilibrium of Mankind are a doomsday cult of Amarr origin that was founded roughly 1,500 years ago by Ocilan Ardishapur, a relative both of the Amarr Emperor of the time and of the head of the Ardishapur Family. The cult is centered around the corrupted teachings of Aramon Khalid, believing that those who do not follow the Equilibrium's way should be exterminated in order to bring about paradise.
Following their distorted beliefs, the EOM have committed several atrocities throughout their history, with the last known major incident thought to be the destruction of Reschard V's biosphere by an EOM Avatar-class titan.
Above: Suspected EOM-infiltrated renegade dreadnought explodes in Tierijev
Caldari State Corporate Territories Under Heavy Security Lockdown After New Caldari Prime Attack
New Caldari Prime – The Caldari State remains under a widespread and severe security lockdown of corporate territories following the attack on the Chief Executive Panel Administrative Spire that destroyed the top seven upper levels of the building. CEP Chairperson Puok Kossinen is still missing and believed to be among the thousands of casualties inflicted at the bustling HQ of the Caldari State's governing body.
Caldari State Peacekeepers and megacorporation security forces have been carrying our extensive security sweeps and a large number of locations across corporate territories have been raided. The ruling "Big 8" megacorps have continued to hold emergency meetings of the CEP over remote holographic links and Caldari naval forces are on high alert. Worker protest groups have mostly complied with the current state of emergency but a few have protested allegedly "heavy-handed" and "brutal" security actions by the NOH's Internal Security and Lai Dai Protection Services.
Tierijev, Verge Vendor – The squadron of Phoenix-class dreadnoughts bombarding the planet Tierijev IV are reported to have been destroyed by a Federation Navy fleet, EDENCOM's AEGIS units and capsuleer forces in another pitched battle in orbit of a world threatened by mass destruction from space.
Reports indicate that the dreadnoughts were carrying the indentifiers of the Expert Intervention mercenary corporation, a PMC with links to the Nugoeihuvi megacorporation and its Internal Security corporate military. Damage reports are unclear but the Federation defense complex on the surface of Tirerijev IV is believed to have raised its defenses rapidly and warded off most missiles. Others have struck randomly in the surrounding region, with an unconfirmed report claiming an automated mega-plantation dedicated to high-yield wheat crops has been hit by at least one warhead.
The news from New Caldari Prime has been dominated by the destruction of the tip of the CEP's primary spire in Landfall City. CEP Chairperson Puok Kossinen remains unaccounted for but the 'Big 8' megacorporation CEOs have been stated to be "safe, secure and holding a CEP meeting by remote holographic comms." The Caldari State's Inner Circle Delegate, Akimaka Saraki, has requested a full meeting of the Inner Circle after his own conference with several of the Big 8 CEOs. The Federation's Ambassador Devan Malate has joined the call for a meeting, and the Amarr Empire and Minmatar Republic delegates are understood to be enroute after reporting to their own governments over the weekend.
Tierijev, Verge Vendor – A squadron of Phoenix-class dreadnoughts has reportedly begun a bombardment of the fourth planet of the Tierijev system. The apparent strike across the Gallente Federation's Verge Vendor border with the Citadel region in the Caldari State comes soon after a report of a major explosion at the Caldari CEP's primary Spire in Landfall City on New Caldari Prime.
The status of the Tierijev border system was disputed by the Caldari and Gallente governments for many decades after the end of the Caldari-Gallente War. Although the system was determined to be Gallente territory under the Yulai Accords, it remains a sore point of contention for Caldari nationalists. The Gallente Federation maintains an extensive defense complex on Tierijev IV, and there are a variety of settlements and industrial colonies on the planet.
Reports from both New Caldari Prime and Tierijev are confused but the Caldari Navy has declared the "orbital defenses and security of New Caldari Prime intact". The Federation Navy is reported to be scrambling fleet units to support Tierijev as the bombardment by Caldari dreadnoughts continues. AEGIS defense units in the system are also reported to be responding.
New Caldari Prime – Eyewitnesses have reported a large explosion in the upper levels of the Chief Executive Panel Administrative Spire on New Caldari Prime. Unconfirmed reports suggest that several of the upper levels of the corporate spire have been severely damaged, possibly entirely destroyed. Debris is reported to be raining into the surrounding plaza and nearby Landfall Park.
Communications with New Caldari Prime remain open but heavily congested. There are no reports of hostile space vessels in orbit of New Caldari Prime. It is unclear if the CEP was in session but the locations of several "Big 8" megacorp CEOs were last reported to be at their corporate HQ spires or offworld.
LATE BREAKING: CEP Chairperson Puok Kossinen is reported to be missing as sources indicate the CEP were meeting in "remote holographic conference". State Peacekeepers are locking down Landfall City as Caldari Navy and corporate security forces raise defense alerts. Planetary defenses, and city and arcology shields are also reported to have been activated across Caldari State territory.
Floseswin, Metropolis – Orbital bombardment dreadnoughts affiliated to the Amarr Empire have been destroyed in yet another highly-destructive battle over the fate of a planet.
Dreadnoughts bearing the identifiers of the Shining Flame mercenary company carried out a siege laser strike on the surface of Floseswin IV, apparently inflicting significant damage in the vicinity of the wartorn city of Jolan Kraal. Reports have indicated that surface forces presumed to be remnants of Amarr troops on the planet also carried out their own attack, even guiding weapons fire onto Jolan Kraal using surface-to-orbit targeting lasers. The assault was curtailed abruptly by the appearance of several capsuleer pirate supercarriers that proceeded to engage and destroy the dreadnoughts before retreating from a Shining Flame battleship fleet and Amarr loyalist counter-attack.
Minmatar Republic Fleet and Brutor Vanguard forces have been fighting to relieve the planet and the Republic Command's Floseswin IV Liberation Army has activated all reserve defense units. Planetary defense batteries at a number of locations on the surface have been firing on any vessel attempting to breach atmosphere. Republic Command aerospace fighter wings have been fully-scrambled and have engaged a number of targets in low orbit and the upper atmosphere.
Reports of attempted landings are unconfirmed. Reports of launches from locations deep in the southern ocean are also unconfirmed. Long-range scans of Floseswin IV suggest high-yield detonations on the southern continent. The long range of these scans and severe interference from atmospheric disturbances have made it difficult for independent confirmation of any details. Closer approaches are extremely dangerous and several Scope News Conflict Reporting Drones have been destroyed by Republic fighter craft and anti-aircraft fire.
CONCORD has issued an urgent appeal for calm and for the first time mobilized the DED reserves to "peacekeeping intervention status", known to be a euphemism for preparations to launch counter-invasion operations in the event one or more sides launches attacks beyond the militia warzones. Ambassador Keitan Yun and Captain Marshal Sirdan xer Qosh have reportedly been recalled by their governments. The CONCORD Inner Circle has emphasized that "diplomacy continues through every possible channel".
The Gallente President and the Caldari Chief Executive Panel have issued their own calls for restraint, pointing to the fact that the incident took place "within the bounds of a designated militia warzone within the terms of the CONCORD Emergency Militia War Powers Act." While this is arguably a strained reading of the CEMWPA laws alongside the terms of the Yulai Accords and Convention, the possibility that such an argument may prevent a descent into total war cannot be dismissed.
Floseswin, Metropolis – Reports from the war-torn Floseswin system state that multiple Revelation-class dreadnoughts have made orbit around Floseswin IV and have opened fire on surface targets with siege lasers. This assault on a Minmatar-controlled and -populated planet is particularly alarming for its potential to push the two empires into open warfare across New Eden.
Floseswin system, and the fourth planet in particular, has been a flashpoint in the Amarr-Minmatar militia warzone for nearly 18 months since the Amarr Royal House of Sarum launched a major offensive aimed at "reclaiming the planet and population" for the Amarr Empire. While fortunes have ebbed and flowed for both sides in the ensuing conflict, the Minmatar armed forces managed to retake and hold the major cities and secure most territories on the planet as system control fluctuated back and forth between capsuleer militias.
With the system now under Amarr militia space control, despite occasional strikes by Minmatar militia forces seizing temporary system control, there has been much speculation that a renewed ground offensive is being prepared by Sarum forces building up bases in Floseswin and nearby long-held systems. Reports are unclear as to the identity of the attacking forces but large numbers of Amarr Navy and Republic Fleet vessels are known to be in the area, raising fears of invasion and counter-invasion.
The Scope's Galactic Hour with Ret Gloriaxx brings your roundup of the latest news from around the cluster as the fragile peace of New Eden is threatened by escalations in the aftermath of the Tanoo and Girani-Fa attacks.
Above: Crux Special Tasks Group Dreadnought During Battle Over Girani-Fa III
Feverish Diplomacy Between Empires Slows Rush to War as Tensions and Risks Remain High
Yulai, Genesis – Interstellar diplomacy at the CONCORD Inner Circle and in direct communications between the core empires is reported to have been conducted at a "feverish, non-stop pace" as efforts to avoid a new cluster-wide war continue. The risk of the fallout from the Tanoo and Girani-Fa attacks sparking a conflict between two or more of the major powers is reckoned to be "extraordinarily high" as fleets continue to be mobilized and move around the borders and key systems of the empires.
It is reported that personal contact between Empress Catiz I and President Celes Aguard was initiated soon after the assault on Girani-Fa III by Crux Special Tasks Group dreadnoughts. Federation Navy forces remain on high alert but continue to limit deployments to staging areas and military defense zones short of any presence on border stargates. The Amarr forces deployed to stargates bordering the Gallente Federation have been reported as withdrawing to similar staging bases within Amarr territory in an agreed de-escalation.
President Celes Aguard has pledged a "full investigation of Crux Special Tasks Group" and invited the Amarr Empire to send intelligence officers to the Federation for purposes of "sharing any and all evidence uncovered by the FIO, Federation Naval Intelligence and Gallente Police Directorate."
The situation on the border between the Minmatar Republic and Amarr Empire remains more fluid and continues to be "extremely dangerous" according to CONCORD conflict monitors. Amarr and Republic fleets have moved back and forth, with patrols and stargate security operations carried out at varying times. Despite reports of an open channel between the Imperial Privy Council and Minmatar Tribal Council, mutual distrust remains high. The Caldari State's Akimaka Seraki, on Amarr Prime for a side summit with the Privy Council, is reportedly leading efforts to mediate between the Empire and Republic.
Mystery continues to surround the "illegal cynosural beacon technology" that allowed a supposedly high-sec authorized cyno beacon to be lit in both Tanoo and Girani-Fa. Core empire and CONCORD intelligence agencies are all reported to be seeking further data on the technology, and on the operational methods of the Minmatar and Gallente mercenary units seen using the beacons to guide the assault dreadnoughts into high-sec systems. Efforts to secure the cyno-jamming and beacon networks of the core empires are reported to be the "top priority" of the 'Big 4' interstellar powers alongside avoiding open war.
Above: Crux Special Tasks Group Kronos Deploys "Illegal Cynosural Beacon Technology" in Girani-Fa
Caldari State Megacorporations Impose Security Lockdowns During "Clusterwide Emergency"
New Caldari Prime – The Caldari State's Chief Executive Panel has issued orders imposing lockdowns across all "State and Corporate territories" with the effect of restricting assembly and travel within and between corporate territories.
The vast majority of corporate citizens are believed to be complying with the orders given the alarming escalation in tensions between the core empires in recent days. However, some worker protests have continued with a number of activists pointing out that the promised reforms and refits of the Caldari Navy are proceeding slowly. Fears of the Caldari State being overwhelmed in the event of a wider war are "very real" according to sources within the executive tiers of some megacorporation security forces.
Protests have also focused on the claims of the Guristas Pirates that senior executives of the CBD, Lai Dai and NOH megacorporations have benefited from "undisclosed payments varying from confidential corporate bonuses, skimming contracts, shares of smuggling profits, and outright bribery." The Guristas have released a raft of financial records that purport to come from a variety of megacorporate and subsidiary sources. A few records indicate relationships with criminal gangs and even the Guristas Pirates, particularly in the case of executives alleged to have "ordered security operations against worker protests."
The PKN Interstellar consortium of CBD, Lai Dai and NOH has strenuously denied the records are authentic, accusing the Guristas of perpetrating "a vast fraud and massive forgery aimed at destabilizing the State and destroying the prosperity of all Caldari workers." NOH's Internal Security corporation is reported to have carried out raids against a number of corporate barracks alleged to be "centers for the distribution of faked reports", and security forces of CBD and Lai Dai are believed to have begun their own "information terrorism investigations".
Above: Jita 4-4 DCM Moon Elevator and Mining Colony Reported Under Heavy Security Lockdown
New Spate of Black Dagger Killings Leaves Twelve Dead, Three Suspects "Neutralized"
Matar, Pator – Twelve more notable or wealthy tribal citizens from various clans have been killed in a spate of mass killings involving the now notorious signature of ceremonial black daggers.
The most shocking attack was a "gun and grenade" attack that killed six in a mining works at the head of the Tronhadar Valley. A Krusual Tribe mining magnate on an inspection tour was among the dead. Two suspects were "deceased on arrival" at the local police barracks but were later found to be carrying black daggers of ornate design.
Three officials of the Brutor Tribe and a Starkmanir clan elder were killed during a public meeting in the city of Kulburis before the knife- and gun-wielding assailant was "neutralized" by members of the public. Two members of the Vherokior Tribe, including the matriarch of the wealthy Akovhiora family, were killed by an unknown assassin in the port district of Matar City.
In closely related news, the holoblimp explosion disaster on Huggar has been reported as having a final confirmed death toll of 213, with over 600 injured. In a bizarre development confirming its connection to the other killings, the shrapnel payload of the explosive devices fitted to the holoblimp has been confirmed as consisting of "dagger-like shards of black iron and obsidian". Reports suggest that at least 3,000 such shards were packed into the modified holoblimp.
In Other News
Yulai, Genesis – Republic Fleet battlegroups have been deployed to multiple border and key stargates across Minmatar space as Amarr fleets gather on gates bordering the Republic and Federation. The Inner Circle is in emergency session as a dangerous escalation of forces across New Eden is in progress following the bombardment attacks in Tanoo and Girani-Fa.
The Minmatar Republic has reacted to the large mobilization of Amarr forces with their own deployments of fleet groups to key locations. Border systems with the Ammatar Mandate have been reinforced with substantial battlegroups. Additionally, various systems that serve as fallback positions in the militia warzones of Heimatar and Metropolis have been reinforced with large fleet presences. In one notable hotspot, large fleets are facing off across the Ardar-Floseswin stargate link.
There are no reports of contact between the opposing forces but the possibility for accidental escalation to outright war is alarming citizens across New Eden. With large numbers of vessels still mobilized on EDENCOM duty the combined deployments are approaching the vast numbers of battle fleets and capital ships mobilized at the height of the Triglavian invasions.
Sanmatar Maleatu Shakor is reported to be in conference with the Tribal Council and military advisors, including Hetman General Kanth Filmir and Liberator General Nola Ashok. The Tribal Council is believed to be considering a call up of reservists from the Territorial Defense Guards and Tribal Militias. An order placing all active Republic Fleet and Republic Command troops on wartime alert has already been issued.
The Caldari State has reacted cautiously but there are reports of megacorporation security fleets, including capital ships, moving to positions close to the borders with the Federation and Republic. The Caldari State's delegate to the Inner Circle is currently on Amarr Prime for a summit with the Imperial Privy Council. The Amarr Empire has continued to activate planetary defenses, and raise militia and police forces to war footing.
The Gallente Federation continues to adopt a posture aimed at de-escalation and has kept its mobilized forces away from stargates. The powerful Luminaire Defense Fleet has been fully mobilized and its squadrons spread among staging locations throughout the Crux constellation.
|TinyMiner Eve Online Mining Bot - EVE ONLINE BOT ISK MINER|
|Page: EVE Online World News|