Are dreadnought orbital attacks in Tanoo and Girani-Fa the start of a new story arc in EVE?
The last few days have seen an increased activity in EVE's storyline and it all started with a Dreadnought class fleet assault in Tanno followed by another assault in Girani-Fa. Here's what SCOPE reports!
The Scope's Galactic Hour with Ret Gloriaxx brings your roundup of the latest news from around the cluster as the aftermath of the Tanoo II attack continues to reverberate through New Eden; the Caldari State courts its ally; and the Gallente President presses forward with redevelopment plans.
Aftermath of Tanoo II Attack Remains Confused as Calls for Restraint Collide with Accusations
Yulai, Genesis – CONCORD's Inner Circle has commended the Amarr Empire and Minmatar Republic for the "restraint and spirit of co-operation displayed" in the aftermath of yesterday's dreadnought assault on the capital planet of the Ammatar Mandate, Tanoo II. Inner Circle President Seri Okonaya conveyed her personal assurance of full support from CONCORD to Captain Marshal Sirdan xer Qosh, Imperial Delegate to the Inner Circle.
Delegates Keitan Yun of the Republic and Devan Malate of the Federation added their own voices to the call for continued restraint, while expressing their "firm, shared belief that this incident was carried out by rogue elements that may even be loyal to powers opposed to civilization and human freedom." Caldari Substitute Delegate Akimaka Saraki, stopping in Yulai enroute to Amarr Prime, responded to the Minmatar and Gallente representatives' remarks by emphasizing that "minds should remain open, both as to the truth of this matter, and the validity of the forms of government cultures outside the Gallente-Minmatar bloc choose to maintain."
The Amarr Empire's higher authorities have continued to maintain a pronounced silence over the affair, described by one seasoned observer of Imperial diplomacy as "a classic mask of inscrutability barely concealing extreme rage and a determination to exact vengeance." The news from Tanoo itself has been limited since the attack was defeated, due to a continuing security lockdown and the presence of large numbers of troops from the Ardishapur Royal Guards, Ministry of Internal Order and the Order of St. Tetrimon.
The damage to the environs of the planetary capital city of Tor-Ammat continues to be reported as "limited and light" by the ACN. This is despite the evidence from independent orbital overflights that a large new feature, resembling an impact crater, has obliterated an outlying peninsula used as a docks by aquacultural industries based at the coastal city. One military expert hired by the Scope to analyse the images remarked that the damage was "probably a deflection or guidance failure, as it's unlikely the attackers were after the local fishing fleet."
Even so, the main government, military, industrial, and residential districts of Tor-Ammat do appear to have weathered the attack unscathed under the protection of shields and counter-ballistic defenses. Given the formidable fortifications of Tor-Ammat, and Tanoo II in general, many have wondered at the goals of a small flight of dreadnoughts attempting to bombard such a strongpoint. One unconfirmed report from a correspondent in the city has claimed that a ground to orbit laser was being fired from close to the Order of St. Tetrimon Chapterhouse at the edge of the military district. Witnesses of the space battle have also noted that high-power targeting lasers were being used by the dreadnoughts, a common feature on vessels modified for orbital bombardment operations.
For their part, the Minmatar Republic, Brutor Tribe and Brutor Vanguard have all announced an investigation into the individuals identified as the leaders of the attack.
Caldari State Delegation Invited to Satellite Summit at Imperial Privy Council
Dam-Torsad, Amarr Prime – The Imperial Chamberlain's Office has confirmed that the Caldari State has been invited to send a delegation to a "satellite summit" to be held in parallel with the meeting of the full Imperial Privy Council summoned by Empress Catiz I. While unusual, such summits between the Empire and State allies at the Imperial Court are sometimes held to discuss matters of critical importance to both polities.
The Caldari State has confirmed that Senior Executive Director Akimaka Saraki of the Wiyrkomi Corporation will lead the delegation in his capacity as official substitute for the CEO of Wiyrkomi as current Caldari Inner Circle delegate. Executives of the CBD and Sukuuvestaa megacorporations are also attending with all three major factions of the "Big 8" thus represented at talks expected to be focused on common defense, infrastructure and trade issues.
The importance the Caldari State's CEP places on these talks can be gauged by the determination to press ahead with the summit during the Imperial Privy Council despite the continuing and growing protests by workers and middle-tier executives across the corporate territories of the ruling Big 8 megacorps.
President Celes Aguard Announces Major Federal Infrastructure and Redevelopment Program
Gallente Prime, Luminaire – President Celes Aguard has delivered remarks announcing a "major new federal infrastructure and redevelopment program focused on the periphery of our great Federation", during a holocast open meeting between the President and the Senate Federal Works Committee. President Aguard ran for office on a program that emphasized the need for the Federation to invest in the security and infrastructure of the periphery systems and appears determined to make good on her campaign promises.
President Aguard confirmed that she recently authorized the Federation Navy's Stellar Survey Corps to carry out new surveys in the Solitude, Placid and Verge Vendor regions with a view to determining the best locations for a mooted direct stargate connection between Solitude and the other regions of the Gallente Federation. At present, stargate traffic must take a dangerous route through the Syndicate region or a longer and barely safer route through Genesis and Aridia. The President made the construction of a new stargate to Solitude a campaign promise emblematic of her commitment to the periphery of the Federation.
The President also pointed to federal support for the newly-established Duvolle Gravitational Wave Observatory studying the "Trace Cosmos" phenomenon in the Gererique system in Solitude. Additionally, President Aguard confirmed that federal funds would be made available for the next phase of the long-term project to restore or "remedially terraform" Mannar VIII. The original home world of the Mannar people, the planet was rendered barren and the surface uninhabitable after an ecological disaster nearly 150 years ago.
Minmatar Republic's Audesder System "Raided" by Ardishapur Mercenaries
Audesder, Molden Heath – Several squadrons of Red and Silver Hand combat vessels have been reported carrying out "raids" in the system of Audesder on the border of the Minmatar Republic with the Ammatar Mandate. The Red and Silver Hand are a mercenary company known to be sponsored by the Ardishapur family, the ruling house of the Derelik region.
Audesder is a heavily-fortified system that serves as the headquarters of the Minmatar Alliance Defense Brigade, a combined force comprising elements of the Republic Fleet and allied Federation Navy forces. This alliance defense nexus commands the route to the Kenobanala system, itself a heavily-fortified base and location of the notorious Fort Kumar, headquarters of the allied forces of the Imperial Navy, Caldari Navy, Ammatar Fleet and Royal Khanid Navy.
The two alliance garrisons have maintained an uneasy peace on the Republic-Mandate border for decades, with relations even easing in recent years as diplomacy and trade prevailed on the Derelik-Molden Heath routes. The reported new incursion on this fragile border, even by mercenaries, comes at the worst possible time as tensions are at breaking point over the Tanoo II attack. There has been no comment from the Republic, Mandate or Empire so far.
Gallente Dreadnought fleet assaults Girani-Fa III
Girani-Fa, Genesis – Multiple Moros-class dreadnoughts of the Crux Special Tasks Group are reported to have arrived in orbit of Girani-Fa III and to have commenced an orbital bombardment of the planet.
Girani-Fa is noted as a border system that has been the subject of past dispute between the Amarr Empire and Gallente Federation, though the issue of the system's sovereignty has long been considered settled. Girani-Fa III is a fortified and industrialized barren planet believed to have several underground defense complexes and a number of industrial facilities. Ducia Foundry and Imperial Armaments maintain publicly-registered mining, processing and assembly colonies on the planet under contract with the Imperial Navy.
The Gallente Federation-aligned Crux Special Tasks Group is known to carry out operations in conjunction with the Federal military and the Scope is urgently seeking comment from the Federal government. This reported assault comes at a time the Amarr Empire is on alert due to the Tanoo II bombardment incident two days ago. The means by which a dreadnought assault group could penetrate deep into Girani-Fa is unknown but the use of novel cynosural technology was observed during the Tanoo incident.
Later on, the squadron of Moros-class dreadnoughts that launched an orbital strike on the planet of Girani-Fa III has been destroyed by the combined forces of the Amarr Imperial Navy and loyalist capsuleers responding to the emergency.
Girani-Fa III is under enhanced security lockdown with no communications possible with the surface through civilian channels. Scans of the planet are reportedly showing a number of subsurface energy readings suggesting the activation of underground shielding, and possibly surface-to-orbit weapons and active defenses.
President Celes Aguard has personally issued a statement disavowing the involvement of her government in the incident and ordered a full investigation into the activities of the Crux Special Tasks Group by the Federal Intelligence Office. Federal Navy units are reported to have raised their alert status but have been ordered to maintain ready status only.
Authorities across the Amarr Empire are invoking security lockdowns and a number of Royal and Major Houses have invoked wartime status for their fief troops. Reports from several heavily-populated Amarr planets indicate slave districts are being sealed and police troops rushed to key positions to forestall the threat of rebellion.
Empire and Republic face off on borders as inner circle meets
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.