Gathering Clouds

The intel reports we’ve been hearing for a month are true – war is coming to to the North.

After the fall of Goonswarm in Delve, and the nearly-complete campaign to kick CVA out of Providence (some notes on that here, in the first item), the major forces in the South—IT Alliance (-IT-), Against All Authorities (AAA), Atlas (ATLAS)—needed a new scapegoat. It has long been rumored that the southern alliances might band together as a sort of ad-hoc “Southern Coalition” to counter the long-extant “Northern Coalition” made up of Morsus Mihi (RAWR), RAZOR (-RZR-), Tau Ceti Federation (TCF), Mostly Harmless (-42-), Majesta Empire (ME), Wildly Inappropriate (WI.) and assorted smaller organizations. These major political players will be the major political players on the blog for the next few months – I’m sure there will be stories to tell about each of them as this campaign rolls out.

Northern Coalition leaders have pretty publicly exhorted us to spend March building up our coffers of money so we can afford weapons for the coming war, projecting that we would see a major offensive at the beginning of April. It’s now April first, and their predictions were right on target.

Fleets of Southern Coalition freighters and carriers have spent the last few days moving war materiel into position in the low-sec space adjacent to the Northern Coalition’s borders. IT Alliance’s leader, Sir Molle announced the outlines of the plan in his address to the Southern Coalition on Teamspeak. In front of 800 pilots, he laid out the goals for this operation:

The end goal of all this is not to take space. The end goal of this is not to take stations, not to take space, not to take moons. The end goal is simple. It is to break up the NC.

You can read the whole thing here, but it kind of drags. It has some details about the organization of their attack and logistical plans for deploying a forward base close to our territory. Preparations should be complete sometime today, and combat will likely commence in earnest over this coming weekend.

I’m not really clear on the casus belli here. He doesn’t even lay anything out any particular grievances, not even the obvious realpolitik attack-the-other-superpower justification. Can’t say this sort of unspecified grudge match would be that compelling a reason for me to fight. We’ll see if it sustains the SC’s pilots for what may well be a long fight.

Our motivations are much more basic – defend the North. That’s something I can get behind. Bring it.


10 Comments so far. Leave a comment below.
  1. Didn’t know that that thing was publicly, now I don’t have to keep answering people with I don’t know what I am allowed to disclose so I’ll just keep my mouth shut.

    • drew,

      Yeah, it’s a bit tough for me writing this stuff and trying not to disclose confidential stuff, but these kinds of speeches are pretty much assumed to be public. This one was even streamed onto our TS server live. So I don’t think you need to hide that you’re going to be invading the north and basing out of X-7 via Torrinos. We all know that. :D

    • asc,

      Trying to keep information secret which is available to member-level people is pointless in this war; each side has spies in the other, to the point that when the enemy FC calls someone secondary, our FC will tell them to exit siege and warp out.

  2. If IT keeps losing cap fleets in lowsec, we might not actually have a war to fight, though. Which would be pretty boring, tbh.

  3. Ultimately the casus belli is pretty simple: ‘Hey, look, its some dudes. Lets shoot them.’ This is a video game, of which the most interesting parts are shooting other people. No more than that needed, although there’s plenty of history, blah, blah. Personally, I’m not involved, as I find uber-lag fights really tedious, but I love the drama.

    @Chesh: Congrats m8! You guys have scored a glorious victory!! Destroying 12 IT caps has struck a wrecking blow to the IT war machine and driven the cold wind of fear into the hearts of her allies. I’ve heard rumors that the invasion has been called off after this stunning event. Atlas has deserted the cause and AAA has been ordered to stand down. Molle has left the game in shame over losing 12 carriers. Congratulations!

    • drew,

      It’s true that you don’t really need a reason to do anything particular, but Molle didn’t even say what you suggested. “Lets blow up some dudes and have a good fight” is totally legit, but never even came up. He’s totally silent on the question of why. I guess it’s implied?

      And although no more than that is needed, wars in EVE are won and lost in the morale of the pilots. My instinct is that having a clearer reason to fight helps keep people motivated to show up. If it’s really just about the pew pew, I suspect it’ll be harder to motivate people to show up. An existential threat might turn out to be more motivating. At the same time, being part of the much-larger SC might be motivation enough. Time will tell.

      • Jon,

        As a complete outsider reading this, I can’t help but wonder if the goal is to actually CREATE a Southern Coalition. Whoever led the glorious campaign against the North would be in a fine position to make a grab for power in the new order.

    • just saying you’re (they’re? not sure of your allegiance), not off to a good start, and losing caps to us before you’re even in our space can’t be great for morale.

  4. First off… scapegoat? Read Kirth Kodachi’s post on Providence instructed to not shoot Goons in several battles. And the decision to attack HED-GP. Providence was not a scapegoat. By definition of the word scapegoat… I’m not sure how it applies to the NC. Secondly, losing a few caps in transit. Meh. IT is going a long ways, which requires travel fleets. NC do have spies, NC hot drops travel fleets. This is to be expected. Molle himself has lost several titans over time. No biggie. The problem is the NC doesn’t know what a protracted war is. They are all pumped right now, and the only people in theatre atm are IT. Check back in a month or two, when its really going on. In any historical conflict the attackers take more losses than the defenders (unless you’re invading France). This will fuel morales… and smack talk in local… for awhile. Smack that IT Alliance heard from SOT… PL… Goons. “Your killboard efficiency bla bla bla”. But remember this: it is not a 1 week conflict. As most people know, the conflict isn’t in Delve; the chance to help stop IT from taking Fountain/Delve came and went. The NC stood by and watched. They then gave the remnants of Goons space (even though Goonswarm had tactical plans to invade the NC). And as many NC smacktalkers in local like to say, remember Pr-. IT/former BoB does remember. Its another good reason, that so many people forget/never think about, to invade the NC. Sure, good fights are good fights, but they haven’t forgotten what happened when the NC came down to Delve after BoB disbanded. As for operational security his broadcast was on NC radio. Shouldn’t expect too many tactical details :)


    Aggressive Tendencies

  5. The cause for the war in the North is two-fold. First of all BoB/IT and the NC have a long-running history of conflict including the NC coming down to Delve and helping Goons take it once BoB was disbanded. They have also sheltered Goons since their own disbanding incident. This is reason enough for IT and its allies to want to come and burn the North.

    The second reason is that the North’s BFF stance has forced the South’s hand. In order to defend ourselves against the sheer numbers of the NC we have to form our own coalitions resulting in a sea of blue in the south. Our leaders don’t want this and the aim of the invasion of the North is to crush the coalition and, in my alliance leader’s words, “take them back to the stone age”.

    Of course, how this all unfolds will be a completely different matter. The NC is not a “scapegoat”, though. They are a long-standing political enemy of IT and a threat to the rest of the south that must either be broken up or eliminated.

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