Edmund Mahon remains optimistic despite the projections of some economic analysts, citing the fact that the Alliance still boasts the most profitable economy of any power. Despite the pessimistic reports, influential systems are still flocking to the Alliance, with two more joining in the past week. The coming weeks will validate the opinion of either the Prime Minister or the critical analysts.
Arissa Lavigny-Duval experienced a momentous week in several ways, particularly her recent confirmation as the next Emperor. Only the threats of Emperor's Dawn appear to stand in her way now. The past week saw the closing of the embassy with the Sirius Corporation at Sietae. Relations between the Sirius Corp. and the Empire remain friendly. Four additional key systems subscribed to the protection of the Shield of Justice in the past week.
Felicia Winters's approval rating has surpassed that of President Hudson for the first time in over a month. With a marked dip in opposition figures, Shadow President Winters was able to build up a command capital reserve that will serve her forces well in the coming week.
Zachary Hudson's approval rating fell again this week as the Katurru system formally rejected the protection of Federation fleets. President Hudson's fleets more than compensated for the loss of Katurru by establishing bases of operation in three additional systems. The advent of the Close Quarters Combat Championship remains a wild card for the President - his public endorsement of CQC as a recruitment tool for the Federation Navy may lead to a rise in approval in the near future.
Li Yong-Rui has put SiriusGov on track for steady growth. This week has seen the assets of one additional control system brought into the Sirius portfolio. Many investors would hope for more rapid growth and quick profits, but many shareholders recognize the value of a steady future of tempered growth. Li Yong-Rui appears most interested in the latter.
Aisling Duval dealt with the results of the Senate's decision on the Imperial succession with grace, offering her support to the pronouncement, and popular opinion of the People's Princess appears to be on the rebound.
Zemina Torval brought two profitable systems into her enterprise during the past week, ensuring yet another week with a high command capital reserve. Trade routes in Senator Torval's territory reportedly rival those of the Alliance. Things continue to look good for the wizened senator.
Denton Patreus returned to Eotienses this week after a month in Achenar for the closed session of the Senate. His fleets appear to have recovered from recent weeks of conflict with Emperor's Dawn just as new Emperor's Dawn bases have been discovered in five systems. In anticipation of the coming engagements, fortification projects in the Senator's systems are currently in full swing.
Archon Delaine and the Kumo Crew claimed another system, the second week of expansion in a row. Analysts of the war effort in the Pegasi Sector have questioned the effectiveness of the Imperial expeditionary fleets and the voluntary forces that have opposed the Kumo Crew. Criminal activity has been spotted, spurring insurrections this week in two influential Federal systems and one Imperial system.
Pranav Antal now governs an impressive 43 control systems. The achievement is even more remarkable when one considers that mere months ago the vision of Utopia was shared by a mere handful of systems. Many doubted whether Antal's vision for the future would gain any traction, but he has proven beyond all doubt that the ideals of Utopia are more enticing than originally believed.
Standing on the steps of the Senate building, Chancellor Anders Blaine announced the Senate's decision on the succession. In a historic selection, and as a result of a clear majority vote, Arissa Lavigny-Duval will be the next ruler of the Empire. She will be the first female leader of the Empire since Marlin Duval founded the original colony on Achenar in the 23rd Century, although she will carry the title 'Emperor' rather than 'Empress'. Such an appointment would have been impossible prior to the reign of Hengist Duval due to an ancient decree that all Imperial rulers be male, but a ruling passed by the late Emperor early in his reign did away with this generations-old tradition.
The news has been almost universally celebrated, and even Princess Aisling Duval offered her support for the appointment. The celebrations are likely to continue until the coronation ceremony in a week's time.
Not everyone agrees with the Senate's decision, however. In a statement, Emperor's Dawn declared the selection of Arissa Lavigny-Duval "a desecration of the traditions of the Empire". The organisation has vowed not to allow the ceremony to happen.
Today is the last day of deliberation for the Senate over the question of who will become the next Emperor. By law, the Senate must announce the new Emperor by a clear majority decision tomorrow. Meanwhile, many are asking how a group like Emperor's Dawn could establish so many high-level contacts, and keep such a widespread extremist organisation secret for so long. It is clear that the new Emperor, whoever it may be, will be faced with challenges from the moment he or she assumes the throne.
Chancellor Blaine was considered the strongest candidate for the throne, particularly given the deadlock between Princess Aisling Duval and Senator Arissa Lavigny-Duval. But the recent revelation of his indirect connection to Emperor's Dawn leaves the two women as the most convincing contenders. The Princess's chances were dealt a blow by the revelation of her own connections to Emperor's Dawn. With Senator Lavigny-Duval receiving public support from Senators Patreus and Torval, some believe she has an advantage. Overall, however, the two are too closely matched to be able to confidently call a winner.
Edmund Mahon's policies have allowed the Alliance to achieve new levels of prosperity this week. With optimism and trading profits reaching new highs, it's never been better to be a part of the Alliance. Following the prosperity of the past week, two influential systems pledged their support to the Alliance, and the Council of Admirals reported successfully thwarting numerous incursions seeking to spoil the Alliance's blossoming golden age.
Arissa Lavigny-Duval's administration stabilized last week, but once again there is turbulence in her domain. As a result, four systems have begun to question whether Arissa's administration meets their needs. Some have questioned whether the difficulties plaguing Senator Lavigny-Duval's administration in recent weeks stem from her preoccupation with the closed session of the Imperial Senate, where the question of Emperor Hengist's successor is being decided.
Zachary Hudson's approval rating fell slightly this week, but overall the President maintained his standing in relation to other major powers. Heavy undermining took place throughout the President's territory, but overall the Federation fleets under Hudson's command weathered the storm well. The fly in the ointment this week came in the form of a complaint lodged by the Katurru system.
Felicia Winters endured setbacks in her attempt to forge diplomatic agreements during the past two weeks, but she also deflected serious opposition to her rule with aggressive community outreach and aid to systems in need. Her command capital reserves are not as deep as in recent weeks, but funding is available for media teams to spread liberal values to at least one system this week.
Li Yong-Rui was disappointed, as deals that would have incorporated additional systems into the Sirius portfolio fell through. Sirius's investors remain optimistic about the corporation's future performance, as deals with wealthy systems lie on the horizon. With the ongoing study of Sothis Crystalline Gold, Sirius stocks are soaring.
Following the negative press surrounding the potential involvement of one of the Aisling's patrons in the Emperor's assassination, two systems pulled support a week ago, followed by four additional systems this week. The People's Princess now looks forward to the events of the coming week, and the decision of the senate on the matter of the Imperial succession.
Zemina Torval made great strides, as her enterprise expanded its influence into three valuable systems. With this news, the elderly senator has demonstrated her frailty is a figment of her detractors' imaginations. With a vast command capital reserve, Senator Torval is in a strong position to offer several systems the opportunity to become preferred trading partners this week.
Denton Patreus fought to stabilize his territory this week, following recent conflicts with Emperor's Dawn. The cost of the conflicts, combined with regular undermining in the Senator's territory, led to the loss of one key system, although three others that had been in turmoil were retained. The senator now looks to recoup some of the strength that was spent, and to take positive steps leading to a stronger future.
Pranav Antal authorized Utopians to send humanitarian aid to the Munshin system to support the displaced Pegasi Sector citizens. Polevnic's finest commanders sallied forth, crossing hundreds of light years to deliver much-needed medical supplies. The emphasis placed on this mercy mission came at the cost of further advancement of Utopian ideals in surrounding systems.
Archon Delaine and his ruthless crew met with success this week as they brought the resistance force of HIP 106072 to its knees. Those who resisted paid the inevitable price in blood, their families sold into slavery. The expansion of the Kumo Crew comes as a blow to those who have fought for months to end the tyranny of the pirate lord. Analysts now suspect the harassment of refugee ships served as a distraction that allowed the Kumo Crew to conquer this remote world.
Officials from the Defence Force of Amitrite have praised the many pilots who helped clear the system of pirates this week. Hundreds of hostile ships were eliminated, and crime levels in the system subsequently dropped to new lows.
Representatives of the Libertas Cooperative, speaking on behalf of resettled Pegasi Sector refugees, also extended their thanks to the pilots: "Many of the refugees in the Munshin system have been separated from their families. Now they can be safe in the knowledge that their loved ones can traverse the Empire safely. For the second time in recent weeks, the citizens of the Empire have proved they care about their fellow man. They have set an example for us all."
Some segments of the media have speculated that the participation of independent pilots was especially high because of crime-deterrence policies introduced by Senator Arissa Lavigny-Duval. The Defence Force of Amitrite dismissed these claims, calling them "a crass attack on brave men and women who risked their lives to help strangers".
Capitol has been abuzz with rumour following Senator Denton Patreus' open declaration of support for Senator Arissa Lavigny-Duval. While possibly not a frontrunner for Emperor, Patreus commands a sizeable fleet and is rich and influential enough to help Arissa Lavigny-Duval become Empress.
Senator Lavigny-Duval already enjoys the support of Chancellor Anders Blaine, whose voice is perhaps the loudest and most influential in the Senate.
The Imperial Herald's revelations concerning connections between Princess Aisling's office and the Emperor's Dawn insurgency have severely impacted her rating, and are likely to have cost her support in the Senate. The political landscape has been shaken further by Senator Zemina Torval's announcement that she is backing Arissa Lavigny-Duval to be crowned Empress.
Although the Senate remains in closed session until the succession is determined, Senator Denton Patreus made his support clear in a speech to his command staff:
“Everyone knows that my priority is the security of the Empire. It is my duty as a senator to provide the best possible opportunities for the clients, patrons, citizens and slaves who follow me. I take that duty seriously, as I do my oath as a senator to care for the Empire as a whole.
“Part of that duty is to ensure that whoever sits at the apex of Imperial society is the right person for the task at hand. They must know when change is needed, yet still observe the traditions that make the Empire strong. They must be strong to ensure that we cannot be defeated, but they must also show mercy when the situation requires it.
“Many of my loyal followers have said that I would be a suitable candidate for Emperor, and I am flattered and deeply honoured that they hold me in such high regard. To them I say that I will be happy to work with whoever is declared Emperor. Were it up to me, then the choice would be simple.
“My vote goes to one whom, but for the cruellest of murders, would already occupy the throne. It goes to my esteemed fellow senator, Arissa Lavigny-Duval.”
Some commentators have stated that this public demonstration of support is at odds with the principle of a closed Senate session, but others counter by saying that the current situation is unparalleled in Imperial history.
Edmund Mahon has led the Alliance to prosperity this week, surpassing all other major powers. New interstellar agreements have extended the Alliance’s areas of governance, while diligent legislative reports allowed the Prime Minister to effectively withstand attempts to undermine his authority. The Alliance now looks forward to a period of unprecedented prosperity.
Zachary Hudson’s fleets weathered a massive storm this week, while successfully beating back the highest levels opposition the Federation’s President has seen. As defensive fleets executed their orders with diligence, offensive task forces pressed on the pain points of the Federation’s rivals. Hudson has made it clear that challenges to his authority will not be tolerated.
Felicia Winters has consistently proven her ability to defy the odds, and this week was no exception. Withstanding the established norm of heavy opposition, the Shadow President’s couriers busied themselves with the distribution of aid packages throughout her sphere of influence. Her people now stand ready to extend Federation aid to additional systems.
Aisling Duval’s publicity machine suffered minor setbacks late this week, resulting in a drop in standing. Sources close to the ‘People’s Princess’ have pledged to organise media blitzes in thousands of systems. It remains to be seen whether the lost standing will be recovered, although her supporters are, as always, optimistic.
Arissa Lavigny-Duval’s hard stance against crime was rejected by seven control systems this week, representing roughly 10% of systems previously governed by the senator. Five additional control systems are petitioning for an end to Senator Lavigny-Duval’s administration. The loss of these systems may prove to be a double-edged sword, however, as their maintenance has historically required a disproportionate amount of administrative effort.
Lee Yong-Rui’s Sirius Corp spent its assets with prudence this week, making deals in several systems. Negotiations are still pending, but the prospect of further acquisitions has noticeably driven up the company’s stocks in financial markets, and shrewd investors would do well to take heed.
Denton Patreus perfectly balanced yet another weekly budget, leaving him with insufficient capital to expand or prepare any systems this week. Having experienced relatively low opposition in his own territory, Patreus focused his efforts on destroying Emperor’s Dawn. With analysts predicting that the conflict will last at least another week, the absence of distractions such as subjugating additional systems may allow the senator to effectively stamp out the traitorous elements within his territory.
Zemina Torval’s enterprises have shown promising signs of economic recovery. The shrewd businesswoman has expanded her control in Imperial space for the first time in weeks. Careful planning has ensured that Senator Torval now rests on a comfortable cushion of command capital, and wise preparation and expansion may allow her to rise further in standing.
Pranav Antal has built up his standing this week through his characteristic peaceful approach, standing in stark contrast to his neighbour in the Pegasi Sector. Utopia and the Simguru rejoiced this week as the Miki system joined the commune. Utopia’s holdings now match those of Senator Torval.
Archon Delaine’s excursions into Imperial territory contributed to the turmoil now faced by Arissa Lavigny-Duval and Aisling Duval. The successes of the expeditionary fleets came at the cost of expanding his dominion. Ever the opportunist, Archon Delaine now stands poised to overthrow neglected Federation systems bordering the Pegasi Sector.
Ever the opportunists, Kumo Crew commanders have swept across a number of systems controlled by Arissa Lavigny-Duval in the last seven days. They penetrated deeper than in any previous skirmish, and elevated the level of danger faced by Imperial citizens as a result of the Pegasi Pirate War.
With turmoil affecting billions of Imperial citizens and sweeping them into the ongoing saga, Commanders and tacticians have begun to realise that the conflict has taken on a new dimension. Leaked intelligence indicates that as the week draws to a close, Archon will focus his attention on planets and stations pledged to Aisling Duval.
With Kumo Crew attacks imminent, the Empire must decide how to best fortify its strongholds against further incursion while trying to stem their enemy’s momentum. What was once thought of as a simple operation now draws on the strength and resources of a thousand worlds.
After the day’s Senate deliberations finished, Senator Arissa Lavigny-Duval stopped to answer questions from the assembled reporters. When asked what she considered the most important issue facing the Empire, she replied:
“Most of all the Empire needs stability and continuity. I was privileged to spend some time with Emperor Hengist Duval after he recovered from his coma. He shared with me a vision in which the Empire continues to build on its strengths of justice and tradition.
“It saddens me greatly that anyone, especially someone considering themselves an imperial citizen, could bring an end to such a great man. I consider it my duty to make sure that his vision becomes a reality.”
When asked if that meant she considered herself the heir to the Emperor’s throne, she stated:
“The decision of who will become Emperor is in the hands of the Senate. There are many suitable candidates, and I am honoured to be among them. Whether or not I am crowned, I will continue to work toward the future that Hengist Duval shared with me.”
Systems under the sway of Arissa Lavigny-Duval have begun expressing discontent at the current political situation in the Empire, and the Kumo Crew is taking the opportunity to cause trouble of their own.
Leaked military intelligence indicates that hundreds of Kumo Crew fleets will soon descend on Imperial territory in an effort to cultivate further civil unrest. The plan is apparently to force Duval into admitting the foolishness of the Pegasi War by bringing it as close to home as possible.
Operation Uranus saw the Kumo Crew pirates target worlds under the influence of Senator Denton Patreus, but this is the first time they have been bold enough to strike farther afield. Only time will tell what impact this will have on the Imperial power players.
Aisling Duval has once again topped the powerplay rankings, as extraordinarily low opposition to the people’s princess, combined with sufficient fortification, has allowed her to excel above all others this week.
Zachary Hudson has demonstrated an ability to stand firm against overwhelming opposition. Undermining in over thirty systems was cancelled and extended the protection of the Federation fleet to several more, and Hudson’s rise to second place is well warranted this week.
Arissa Lavigny-Duval’s rising administrative costs, accompanied by shrewd undermining, has led to turmoil in seven systems this week. An increased emphasis on meaningful fortification is clearly needed to maintain the senator’s sway over her vast territory.
Edmund Mahon has again guided the Alliance into prosperity. Careful fortification has secured Alliance borders, although the Alliance saw more opposition than the Empire. Prime Minister Mahon is now poised to offer citizenship to several key systems in the coming week.
Felicia Winters, much like Hudson, weathered above-average undermining, but in spite of this she proved her resilience by providing humanitarian aid to one star cluster while maintaining a comfortable command capital reserve.
Denton Patreus, ever the smooth operator, balanced his budgets nearly perfectly this week. Evading a deficit, his fleets now occupy control spheres in two additional locations.
Li Yong-Rui has led Sirius Gov back into the black. Shrewd leadership, cutbacks, and the diligent labours of Sirius representatives have yielded a large command capital reserve. With an optimistic outlook, SiriusGov is poised to extend its influence once more in its corner of space.
Zemina Torval has made a recovery from recent weeks of turmoil and the reduction of her portfolio. The senator now looks to end a long period of contraction in her enterprises through the acquisition of key systems.
Archon Delaine’s lean forces have again amassed enough command capital to stir up insurrections in several systems. Although the Kumo Crew was rebuffed in its attempts to overthrow Federation and Imperial systems, a surge in criminal activity was reported in several more systems.
Pranav Antal’s quiet commune succeeded in sharing the vision of Utopia with the inhabitants of Miki and the surrounding systems, and his people now hope to bring these systems into the fold. With no systems undermined this week, Pranav’s people are clearly the embodiment of Utopia.
With the sombre echo of Emperor Hengist Duval still resonating throughout Capitol, the Senate reopened today to deliberate how the question of succession will be resolved. Chancellor Anders Blaine opened the discussion:
“Without a clear line of succession, we have a solemn duty to decide who will rule the Empire in these fractious times. It is clear that our beloved Emperor wished for Senator Arissa Lavigny-Duval to become heir and so, when the time came, become Emperor. That time has now come, but the law does not allow us to honour his wishes. Instead, we must follow the rules set out for us by centuries of law and tradition.
“The Senate has one month to determine who will be the 16th ruler to sit on the Imperial throne. The candidate must be of royal blood or of royal marriage, and must have a clear majority backing of the Senate in the final count. The final tally will be taken on October the 5th.
“Personally, I would urge the senators present to consider the Emperor’s intentions carefully. I knew him well, and I know that everything he did was for the good of the Empire.”
The city has almost recovered from the massive influx of mourners, and the streets are once again clear of the press of humanity. Now the question on everyone’s lips is: who will be the next to occupy the Great Throne?
It's time for another weekly report on the struggles of the foremost political powers in the galaxy. Some have fallen from grace and others have climbed higher than anyone expected. Read on for the details.
Arissa Lavigny-Duval seems set to remain the most influential individual in today’s political landscape. Immensely popular among members of the Pilots Federation, Arissa was able to secure seven more systems with ease while still contributing the bulk of the Imperial forces for the Pegasi Pirate War. While the size of her sphere of influence puts a heavy strain on the Princesses’ organisation, so far her pilots have managed to compensate through widespread fortification.
Aisling Duval’s administration faces another week of internal turmoil, which explains her drop to #4 in the GalNet rankings. While the ‘Peoples’ Princess’ continues to enjoy the support of many Commanders, her short-term situation is difficult. Her sphere of influence has grown rapidly and now includes many systems that are draining her resources, leaving her space vulnerable to the increased enemy undermining seen during the past week.
Zachary Hudson has extended his influence to four new systems this week, showcasing the increased ability of the president’s agents to project power across the galaxy. Hudson’s ability to expand his reach might be compromised, however, by developments at home, where enemy wings continue to attempt to undermine his control. Although determined defensive efforts allowed Hudson’s organisation to avoid falling into turmoil, it was a close call, sparking concerns for the future.
Felicia Winters’ administration has recovered from the turmoil of last week thanks to well-coordinated fortification efforts and a minor decrease in enemy activity. While danger has not passed for the Shadow President’s organisation, her supporters have again showed an ability to resist sustained hostile efforts to undermine her control, which have plagued Winters for the last two months.
Zemina Torval has seen her support base – which was previously dropping – stabilise and even slightly increase this week, as her supporters increase their efforts. Torval is still in an extremely difficult situation, however, as with almost a dozen of her systems undermined and both her organisation’s efforts to claim new systems failing, she is facing turmoil in her space. As her enemies smell blood in the water, it’s unclear if Torval’s organisation will be able to recover from its current difficulties.
Denton Patreus has enjoyed a surge in support in recent weeks – a situation his Commanders used to expand his grasp, adding five new systems to his sphere of influence this week. This expansion came at the same time as a drop in fortification efforts at home, however, and focused counter-attacks from Kumo Crew pilots. With Patreus’ administration barely escaping turmoil, it seems that the Senator’s rapid expansion will be checked, for now, by problems at home.
Edmund Mahon has proven without doubt that his #2 ranking is well deserved. Despite being the focus of extremely heavy enemy action, with seven systems undermined and several others threatened, the Alliance politician’s organisation avoided falling into turmoil with ease, even commanding a respectable reserve of resources to draw on. This is the result of both impressive fortification and a legacy of smart expansion choices, which is sure to make Mahon a formidable player on the galactic stage for the foreseeable future.
Li Yong-Rui claims the #3 position in the GalNet rankings – an impressive achievement for an organisation with fairly modest levels of Commander support. Sirius Gov continues to benefit from a strong strategic position, high-income systems and diplomatic efforts, which ensures the organisation does not see as much hostile activity as some of its neighbours.
Archon Delaine’s Kumo Crew has resisted the Imperial offensive in the Pegasi Sector for the past six weeks, and there is no end to the fighting in sight. While Archon’s control over most of his territory has been undermined, this has failed to push the pirate crew into turmoil, as his pilots focus their defence on a handful of key systems. What some envisioned as a quick knock-out blow has turned into a war of attrition, and as Torval, Patreus and Aisling face trouble at home, Arissa Lavigny-Duval’s legions might have to shoulder the burden of the conflict mostly by themselves.
Pranav Antal has added five new systems to the Utopia, continuing the surprising surge in activity for this once-minor organisation. With the ambitious attempt to establish an Utopian commune in the distant colony of Takurua successful, it appears that Antal’s rise to #8 might be sustained, or even improved, as long as Utopia continues to enjoy a period of relative peace.
In respect of the assassination of Emperor Hengist Duval the planned article for this week has been moved to next week so that historian Sima Kalhana relates some of the key moments from his life.
Emperor Hengist Duval was the 15th in the Imperial Duval bloodline to lead the Empire and he saw a great deal of change in his comparatively short reign. He was born in 3163, only a few days before the death of his grandfather Hender Saik Duval. Some claim that the spirit of Hender had already passed to Hengist such were the similarities in looks and manner noted in Hengist’s later years.
When his father, Hesketh Duval, died in 3233, Hengist assumed his place on the throne. The live broadcast of the coronation created an impression of a serene transition. However lurking beneath this appearance lay significant tensions. Most significant of which was the growing power of the Senate which had developed during the extended period of his father’s illness. A parallel with the situation with Hengist’s coma can be seen in recent months.
At the start of his reign the cold war between the Empire and the Federation was starting to thaw, a process which continued for decades, although friction has recently resumed with the rise of certain powers like President Hudson and Senator Patreus.
Hengist’s reign witnessed a major technological advancement with the introduction of the new frame shift drive. This sped up travel between stars systems and even inside systems by an incredible margin. It created a more quickly shifting political, military and commercial landscape as reacting or causing changing became much easier.
Hengist fell ill early in 3300, and he managed to continue light duties throughout the first half of the year. His sickness worsened as the year progressed and during this time he remained in seclusion with only rare visits to the Senate. At the turn of 3301 he slipped into a coma. Many expected him to not awaken from the coma and it was a great surprise when he recovered several months later.
Near the close of 3300, Hengist decreed that his only legitimate child, Harold (who is Aisling Duval’s unmarried father), was not of sound mind and so unfit for rule, and in any case had no legitimate children himself. Following this announcement Arissa Lavigny-Duval declared that she was the illegitimate child of Hengist. The Emperor supported this claim by announcing his forthcoming marriage with Arissa’s mother, Florence Lavigny, and was expected to formally adopt Arissa and cement her claim to the throne.
With his murder and the marriage not completed the succession to the imperial throne is again not clear cut and many fear the potential instability this could cause to the Empire if not decided quickly after the Emperor’s funeral.
After an exciting week it’s time for another report on the political manoeuvrings and struggles of the galaxy’s most prominent political players. Hostilities have flared up, so read on to find out who benefitted from the chaos and who has been a victim of it.
Arissa Lavigny-Duval used this week to recover from the turmoil her administration had fallen into, with her supporters preparing several systems for expansion and undertaking widespread fortification throughout her space. This impressive defensive effort has assured Arissa’s rise to the #1 spot in the GalNet rankings, despite the successful enemy undermining of Cook and He Xingo.
Aisling Duval has suffered an unexpected drop to #3 in the galactic rankings this week. An increase in hostile activity in Aisling’s space, and the successful enemy action in her system of Syntheng, has pushed her administration into turmoil. This downturn in the face of a relatively minor offensive on her space calls into question Aisling’s ability to maintain control over her rapidly growing sphere of influence.
Zemina Torval has struggled in recent weeks, and her drop in rankings is certainly understandable. The Senator had her control of nearly half a dozen systems successfully undermined, and her only expansion attempt, in Mannoda, failed. While Torval’s resource reserves and her supporters’ impressive fortification efforts were enough to stave off turmoil, she will be facing a difficult week if the hostilities in her space continue.
Denton Patreus has used the recent weeks to recover from the sharp drop in support his organisation has seen. With the Kumo Crew distracted and under pressure from Operation Davy Jones, and Federal corsairs focusing on Zemina Torval, the Senator’s forces surged ahead, rapidly expanding Patreus’ sphere of influence and securing a rise in the rankings for their ambitious leader. It remains to be seen if this impressive recovery can be maintained if Denton’s systems once again come under attack from his rivals.
Zachary Hudson had a successful week. With expansion paused due to recent turmoil, his supporters completed an impressive fortification program throughout much of the President’s sphere of influence. This meant that only one of Hudson’s systems was successfully undermined by the enemy, and it gives the Federation politician an impressive reserve of resources to draw upon.
Felicia Winters has had her space heavily infiltrated by enemy wings for weeks now, and her supporters always staunchly defended her systems. However, this past week saw a sharp increase in hostilities in the Shadow President’s powerbase, straining her modest forces. With her grip on much of her space undermined by rivals, Winters’ administration falls into turmoil, and it’s only through impressive effort from her supporters that just one of her systems is at risk.
Edmund Mahon has shown that his organisation has the ability to grow stronger even in the face of extreme difficulties. The Alliance politician’s rise to #2 in the GalNet rankings is well earned this week, with his resilience to heavy hostile action attributed to a successful fortification program and a series of expansions into highly profitable systems in the recent weeks. While both of those factors give Mahon a good reserve of resources to draw on, his enemies successfully undermined eight of his systems in what likely heralds a period of increased hostility, likely to tax the rapidly expanding organisation.
Li Yong-Rui’s Sirius Gov has retained its high galactic standing despite a sudden increase in attacks on its systems. While the ability of Li Yong-Rui’s supporters to withstand the added pressure is impressive, the successful undermining of two their systems and widespread hostilities throughout many of their border systems likely spell an end to a period of relative peace for the organisation. As tensions with Sirius’ neighbours flare up, the corporate government is sure to come under increased pressure from without.
Archon Delaine and his Kumo Crew continue to defend against the Imperial offensive – dubbed ‘Operation Davy Jones’ – which is now in its fifth week. While the pirate lord’s grip on his claimed territory has been severely challenged, with one of his expansion attempts stopped in its tracks and his control over more than a dozen systems undermined, there is yet no victory in sight for his attackers. With a relatively small powerbase and key systems fortified against aggression, the Kumo Crew remains unbroken, having avoided falling into turmoil and even securing one new system, Kakmbuta.
Pranav Antal has experienced an amazing surge in support in the recent weeks. Emboldened, his supporters claimed several new systems for Utopia, including Ewah, where a fierce battle with the local opposition forces took place. While attempts to claim the distant Sothis faltered and expansion into Lidpar was countered by staunch enemy action, it seems clear that Utopia will continue to grow at a quick pace. The one difficulty facing Pranav Antal’s organisation is somewhat lacklustre fortification efforts, which may expose Utopian systems to enemy action, should hostilities flare up.
It's time for another weekly report on the struggles of the foremost political powers in the galaxy. While several regions saw a more peaceful week, there have also been some big developments. Read on to find out who benefited, and who is tumbling down the rankings.
Arissa Lavigny-Duval has expanded her influence into another system with close to no opposition and fortified her space against some well-coordinated undermining by her enemies, all while providing the core of the fleet attacking Archon Delaine, showcasing her ability to project her power over the whole of inhabited space. With her administration rising to the challenge and recovering from recent turmoil, Arissa's territory is set to return to its previous growth.
Aisling Duval maintains her #1 spot in galactic rankings. This is partly due to her continuing growth at a time when some of her rivals are seeing internal difficulties, and partly because the Princess enjoyed a very peaceful week, with few reports of hostile activity in her space and no opposition to her expansions. With vast resources and an efficient PR machine at her disposal, Aisling is set to keep her galactic poll standing for the foreseeable future.
Zachary Hudson has lost standing this week, in part due to somewhat lacklustre expansion efforts, which saw one of his three attempted expansions stopped by hostile wings. However, the efforts of Hudson's supporters to fortify his vast territory have been remarkably successful, again showcasing the President's ability to withstand heavy undermining of his systems.
Felicia Winters has seen her space come under heavy assault this week. While Winters' supporters are by now extremely proficient at defending her space against enemy undermining action, two setbacks have hurt the Shadow President's ranking this week. The attempt to expand her influence into the system of Liburodo has been stopped by overwhelming enemy action, and Edmund Mahon's expansion into Lugh has contested Felicia's hold over several other systems, further taxing her administration.
Zemina Torval lost the support of several financial interests a few weeks ago, and continues to suffer from the after-effects of that, making another rise in the rankings unlikely for now. At the same time, however, Torval makes good use of limited resources, easily expanding to another system and fortifying much of her space. While the Senator continues to see only moderate enemy action in her space, she has once more suffered due to a focused strike against Tanghpon, which successfully undermined her control of that system.
Denton Patreus had a very successful week. While his supporters are still directing much of their attention to Operation Davy Jones, the Senator managed to expand his influence into two more systems, and successfully fortify and even outdo Archon Delaine in the hotly contested system of Cuchua, which both men have attempted to prepare for future expansion.
Edmund Mahon saw his quick rise to galactic prominence suffer some push-back this week. While his attempt to expand into Lugh was successful and his supporters successfully fortified his systems, the massive surge in enemy activity against the Alliance politician's forces may signal future difficulties, and his expansion into Lugh could trigger more conflict with Felicia Winters and Zachary Hudson. For now, however, Mahon's #3 standing is well deserved, and he enjoys a steady growth in support not enjoyed by his rivals.
Li Yong-Rui expanded into no fewer than five new systems this week. This, along with his successful fortification efforts, easily justifies his rise in galactic standings. Sirius Gov has so far seen few attempts by its rivals to stop its efforts, and it's not entirely clear how the corporation will cope once it's seriously challenged, but it's clear that Li Yong-Rui's organisation will not be returning to the bottom of the galactic ranking any time soon.
Archon Delaine is still in a difficult position, but his supporters have managed to limit the damage done by the Imperial attackers this week. While Operation Davy Jones succeeded in undermining the Kumo Crew's control of five key systems, better organised fortification efforts have actually left the pirate lord with more resources at his disposal than he had the week before. With no new expansions and the continuing assault by huge numbers of Imperial pilots, the pirate band is still in danger, but five weeks into the offensive they continue to resist and to test the resolve of their attackers.
Pranav Antal has spread the vision of Utopia into four new systems this week. This is an unprecedented surge for what has been one of the galaxy's less prominent powers. Utopians appear to credit this unexpected push to a new group of Commanders who are currently unidentified and not in communication with the rest of Pranav Antal's forces. If that force, nicknamed by some “The Many”, continues to support the Simguru, then Antal's rise to #9 in galactic rankings might yet be sustained. Further rise may be compromised by an ambitious attempt by Utopians to establish a commune in the distant colony of Sothis, which is sure to tax the organisation's scant resources.
Concerns have been raised that the ongoing war of liberation in the Pegasi sector, Operation Davy Jones, has left the Empire exposed to invasion and corruption. Addressing these concerns, Senator Arissa Lavigny-Duval had these words for her constituents:
"With so many of our Imperial fleets engaged in battle, it is understandable that some are anxious about the security of our territory. I want to assure our citizens that local security forces are not impacted – in fact, over half of the Imperial fleet is held in reserve. Over the past weeks, a number of Imperial systems in our home space witnessed corrupt and repressive governments replaced by traditional patronages. Much of the heavy lifting has been done by Imperial reserve fleets. Our continued success in the Pegasi sector will soon liberate our citizens living there. To shirk our duties to our citizens, whether at home or abroad, is unacceptable.”
Many report that the Senate hasn’t enjoyed such a positive atmosphere since the coronation of Hengist Duval nearly 70 years ago. This happy feeling continued today with Senator Denton Patreus taking his turn to congratulate the Emperor on his return to health and for the upcoming wedding.
“I have always spoken out for stability in the Empire and we could not have hoped for greater stability than the Emperor’s recovery from his coma. The Empire has suffered with the absence of its father and some have attempted to take advantage of this for their own ends.
“I have been accused of doing the same, but I can assure everyone that my actions have always been in the best interests of the Empire. I categorically state here and before my esteemed colleagues, that I will do whatever is necessary to support the Emperor in his vision for the future.”
The Senator’s speech was well received. However, some commentators have uncharitably noted that his campaign has flagged compared to his rivals’, and that Senator Patreus is trying to set himself as a kingmaker to break the popularity deadlock between Arissa Lavigny-Duval and Aisling Duval.
Unaffiliated supporters of Arissa Lavigny-Duval have today voiced concerns at rumours of an escalating intervention in the Pegasi Sector on the part of Lavigny's Legion.
Discussion of the the highly publicised plight of Imperial citizens living in volumes of space controlled by Archon Delaine's Kumo Crew dominated newsfeeds and social media throughout Kamadhenu over the weekend. Opinion is split on the humanitarian value of an intervention in a region perceived by some as extremely remote.
Speaking anonymously one commander said: "I don't understand why the Legion is wasting time with a foreign backwater like the Pegasi Sector. I'd never even heard of it before. We've got our own problems with corrupt Dictatorships and greedy Corporations right here at home. We need to clean up the Empire before we try cleaning up the whole Galaxy!".
Anger erupted when it was revealed that diplomatic overtures had been made towards the Federation in regards to confronting the Kumo Crew.
It was later made clear that Lavigny's Legion itself took no part in any talks with envoys of Shadow President Felicia Winters or President Zachary Hudson. A diplomat for Aisling Duval's Aisling's Angels confirmed their own attendance at talks.
The suggestion that Arissa Lavigny-Duval's supporters might be pulled into joint operations with either Hudson or Winters has resurfaced deeply held anti-Federation sentiment, with reports of at least one commander plotting a course to Sol in a well armed vessel in response to the rumours.
Commander Edgar Starwalker