Galactic News

  • April 29, 3307
  • Federal Leaders Launch Rival Data Requests

    Pilots Federation ALERT

    Data deliveries are required by competing initiatives to increase or decrease civilian surveillance in the Federation.

    President Zachary Hudson has asked the public to contribute to making the Proactive Detection Bureau more effective:

    “The PDB requires access to lesser-known comms channels where terrorists and criminals lurk. Supplying it with data from multiple sources will allow us to root out more potential threats.”

    To counter this campaign, Shadow President Felicia Winters aims to protect personal communications from being intercepted:

    “My duty is to help citizens preserve their constitutional right to privacy. If enough data can be gathered for baseline testing, we will distribute legal technology and techniques to secure against government intrusion.”

    Both campaigns require deliveries of the following data types: anomalous bulk scan data, exceptional scrambled emission data, specialised legacy firmware and unusual encrypted files.

    To support President Hudson, pilots should deliver data to Gresley Dock in the Nanomam system.

    To support Shadow President Winters, pilots should deliver data to Ito Orbital in the Rhea system.

    Political analysts believe that since Hudson and Winters are organising these projects personally, there may be repercussions for the security and stability of the systems where each has influence.

  • April 23, 3307
  • Winters Claims Civilian Surveillance is Illegal

    Shadow President Felicia Winters has claimed that the Proactive Detection Bureau is unconstitutional as it violates the Federal Accord.

    In an address before Congress, she said:

    “The Federation’s constitution explicitly guarantees citizens the right to data security and privacy. The PDB tramples over this by raiding everyone’s personal communications, casting aside decency and dignity so that algorithms can probe into every aspect of our lives.”

    “Furthermore, if ACT’s hypothesis is correct and the NMLA is using an advanced dark-comms network, then the PDB’s existence is baseless and unjustifiable.”

    Vice President Jerome Archer responded:

    “The Domestic Counter-Terrorism Act is emergency legislation that temporarily suspends constitutional statutes, until we are satisfied that the terrorist threat has been negated.”

    “Following the PDB’s success in uncovering extremist groups, we are widening the search parameters to include other related criminal activity.”

    Opinion polls suggest that a slim majority of Federal citizens accept that some liberties must be sacrificed in return for increased security.

    However, according to the civil rights organisation Advocacy, the speed with which the PDB gained access to data hubs suggested that “The infrastructure was already in place – all the government needed was an opportunity to make it legal.”

  • March 30, 3307
  • Federal Congress Grants Emergency Surveillance Powers

    Vice President Jerome Archer has successfully proposed a new public surveillance law designed to prevent future terrorist attacks in the Federation.

    The Domestic Counter-Terrorism Act was debated in Congress before being approved by a majority vote. It is considered to be emergency legislation that replaces all previous laws regarding monitoring civilian activity and intercepting personal communications.

    Vice President Archer, who personally drafted much of the new statute, announced:

    “This will allow the government to actively seek out any terrorist agents and sympathisers lurking within our communities. We will never again allow so many families and friends to be taken from us.”

    Shadow President Felicia Winters responded:

    “Nobody wants another ‘Nine Martyrs’, and it’s vital that security is increased across the Federation. But this is an outrageous violation of civil liberties. For this administration to grant itself access to every citizen’s private life makes it resemble a dictatorial regime.”

    VP Archer later confirmed that he is already working with the heads of security services on practical applications of the new law. As a former director of the Federal Intelligence Agency, he is expected to make rapid progress.

  • March 26, 3307
  • Jasmina Halsey Becomes Federal Ambassador

    Former President Jasmina Halsey has joined the Federal Diplomatic Corps to become an ambassador to the Alliance.

    In recent years Halsey served as an advisor to Prime Minister Mahon, but returned to the Federation in January to stand as a witness in the Starship One trial. She was a guest of Shadow President Felicia Winters at the Galactic Summit, and both were evacuated back to Mars when it was cancelled.

    At a press conference, Ambassador Halsey said:

    “Being at the conference reminded me that the political arena is where I belong. My new responsibilities allow me to continue serving the Federation while making use of my experience within the Alliance, and hopefully build stronger bridges between the two.”

    Elijah Beck, head of the Alliance Office of Diplomatic Relations, sent this message:

    “Jasmina’s level-headed advice has calmed many tense political situations. This is the ideal role for a diplomat of her calibre, and I look forward to working with her again.”

    In related news, the Federal Diplomatic Corps confirmed that Ambassador Jordan Rochester had been recalled from duty to be reassigned. Most of the Empire and Federation’s embassies in each other’s space have been closed since November 3306.

  • March 1, 3307
  • Galactic Summit Imperilled by Political Frictions

    Delegates at the diplomatic conference have clashed over long-standing political issues, with some threatening to abandon the event.

    Journalists at Patterson Enterprise in the Sirius system reported their observations via mainstream newsfeeds.

    The Imperial Herald: “Minister Whyte’s claim that the Empire had fomented terrorism by repressing Marlinism was somewhat predictable. But nobody expected Princess Duval’s icy retort, which caused shocked gasps across the chamber.”

    Sol Today: “President Hudson easily dealt with Patreus’s whine about the Federation’s so-called ‘war-mongering’, putting the bombastic Imp in his place.”

    Eye on Achenar: “The dull-witted thug of a president was no match for Senator Patreus, who received cheers for his condemnation of typical ‘Fedneck’ arrogance.”

    The Alliance Tribune: “The conference’s hosts were visibly embarrassed by Councillor Kaine’s claims that Coalsack Nebula terraforming projects had triggered recent Thargoid attacks. Shockingly, several delegates dismissed this as an internal matter for the Alliance.”

    The Federal Times: “Chancellor Blaine’s stonewalling on the co-funding of humanitarian aid brought a rare flash of anger from Felicia Winters: ‘Maybe the Emperor’s puppet could loosen a few strings?’”

    The Sovereign: “Despite Prime Minister Mahon exaggerating the benefits of Alliance membership, several independent ambassadors complained about its incomprehensible bureaucracy, saying it would be less damaging to declare war against the Alliance than join it.”

    A representative from Sirius Corporation reported that the Galactic Summit was “going well”.

  • February 26, 3307
  • Historic Meetings at the Galactic Summit

    Alliance, Empire and Federation leaders have held their first ever face-to-face discussions at the diplomatic conference in the Sirius system.

    Political correspondent Conrad Sterling published this report for Vox Galactica:

    “The Galactic Summit has already made history by bringing together many political figureheads within one conference chamber. Optimistic opening statements from Chancellor Anders Blaine and Prime Minister Edmund Mahon gained applause. President Zachary Hudson was more curt, reminding everyone that billions of people would be affected by their efforts.”

    “Agendas and debate topics for the next three weeks were formalised. Much of the work will be done behind the scenes by ambassadorial staff, making big decisions in small rooms.”

    “The general tone so far has been courteous, although that may not last. Predictably, interactions between the Imperial and Marlinist delegations have been frosty, with Senator Denton Patreus refusing to even acknowledge their presence during discussions.”

    “However, First Minister Jenna Fairfax enjoyed a more cordial meeting with Shadow President Felicia Winters. They were joined by Jasmina Halsey, who has accompanied Winters from Mars in an unofficial capacity.”

    “One notable absentee was Federal Ambassador Jordan Rochester, whose family is under legal scrutiny following the crimes of his older brother Jupiter Rochester. This at least spared Jordan the awkwardness of having to formally greet his ex-fiancée, Princess Aisling Duval. But it’s likely there will be no shortage of tension between other delegates in the coming weeks.”

  • February 22, 3307
  • Hudson and Winters Confirmed for Galactic Summit

    President Zachary Hudson and Shadow President Felicia Winters will both attend the diplomatic conference in the Sirius system.

    The Federation will also be represented by ambassadors from the Federal Diplomatic Corps, as well as several civil and corporate interests.

    Political correspondent Sofia Trevino reported for The Federal Times:

    “President Hudson’s personal presence at the Galactic Summit sends the message that he still holds the reins of power. He clearly hopes that facing off against the Empire’s leaders will distract the public from the recent Jupiter Rochester scandals.”

    “In his absence, Vice President Brad Mitchell will oversee congressional matters. There are rumours that Mitchell is positioning himself to challenge Hudson as the Republican Party candidate in the next election.”

    “The conference also offers opportunities for Felicia Winters to appear presidential. She has eagerly agreed to meet the Marlinist Colonies delegation, having coordinated humanitarian aid for the refugees last year.”

    “Winters has not asked Shadow VP Isolde Rochester to accompany her, perhaps as a rebuke for the criminal actions of her son. Furiously working on damage control for her family’s name, the Rochester matriarch has taken Jupiter’s two children into her care after his husband, Tomas Turai, filed for immediate divorce.”

  • February 2, 3307
  • Core Dynamics Implicated in Starship One Sabotage

    Evidence presented at the trial of Fleet Admiral Vincent suggested financial links to Federal shipbuilding corporation Core Dynamics.

    This significant development was covered by Ethan Takahashi for The Federal Times:

    “The initial investigations around Starship One’s destruction in 3301 were outlined by the prosecution. When the Federal Attorney’s Office revisited this historical data, traces were found of financial transfers routed through non-Federation banking systems.”

    “The FAO brought in the expertise of the Wallglass Investigations Agency, which discovered that these transactions were made via shell companies created by Core Dynamics. Fleet Admiral Vincent, as well as several other naval officers, received billions of credits through these companies that went undeclared.”

    “Vincent refused to answer any questions about this evidence, once again claiming that he is the victim of a conspiracy to hand the presidency to Felicia Winters.”

    Despite multiple requests from the press, Core Dynamics has not made any public comment. There are unverified reports of large-scale activity taking place at some of the corporation’s centres of operation.

  • January 25, 3307
  • Trial of Fleet Admiral Vincent Begins

    The Federal High Court on Mars has opened the trial of Fleet Admiral Lucas Vincent, who is charged with conspiracy to commit murder and treason.

    Vincent stands accused of organising the sabotage of Starship One in 3301, resulting in hundreds of deaths.

    The Federal Times’s crime correspondent Ethan Takahashi reported:

    “The trial began with the prosecution counsel outlining the case. Material evidence obtained from Chief Technician Rory Webster, whose testimony led to Vincent’s arrest, was presented before the jury.”

    “Vincent was questioned about a secure transmission from his office to the presidential vessel on the 24th of May 3301, ordering an unscheduled diversion to the Azaleach system for routine maintenance. This is where Webster’s engineering team followed Vincent’s orders to install the sabotaged hyperdrive component that caused the misjump.”

    “Evading the questions, Vincent claimed that the entire trial was a ‘Liberal Party cover-up’ and that Starship One was destroyed ‘to put Winters in charge’.”

    “With the loss of President Halsey and Vice President Naylor, Felicia Winters did indeed assume the role of acting president and became leader of the Liberal Party. However, the defence counsel played down these accusations, instead declaring that Webster’s recordings of Vincent’s orders could have been falsified.”

  • January 20, 3307
  • Jasmina Halsey Returns to the Federation

    Former President Jasmina Halsey has arrived on Mars to stand as a witness in the upcoming trial of Fleet Admiral Lucas Vincent.

    Halsey was subpoenaed by the Federal High Court to testify before the jury. Although this was not legally enforceable, since she now lives beyond the Federation’s jurisdiction, she has acceded to the court’s request.

    Jasmina Halsey served as Federal president prior to the destruction of Starship One in 3301, which Vincent is accused of arranging. She was recovered alive, but abandoned her political career and emigrated to the Alliance. She has since campaigned as a peace activist and acted as an adviser to Prime Minister Edmund Mahon.

    After greeting a large crowd of supporters at Olympus Village Spaceport, Halsey gave a statement to The Federal Times:

    “This is a bittersweet moment for me. Coming back to the Federation feels like revisiting a past life. But perhaps we can finally lay some ghosts to rest.”

    She was welcomed in person by Shadow President Felicia Winters, who was secretary of state in Halsey’s administration. However, President Zachary Hudson has made no comment regarding his predecessor’s return or the forthcoming trial of Fleet Admiral Vincent.

  • January 8, 3307
  • Aegis Supports Galactic Summit

    The organisation Aegis has expressed support for Utopia’s offer to host a Galactic Summit for all three superpowers.

    Aegis was jointly formed by the Alliance, Empire and Federation to study the Thargoids, and develop new methods of monitoring and combating their forces.

    Professor Alba Tesreau, head of research at Aegis, gave this statement:

    “Humanity’s focus on petty internal conflicts has blinded us to the existential threat of the Thargoids. Their recent horrific attacks should be a wake-up call to the fact that defunding has crippled Aegis’s ability to offer protection.”

    “We strongly entreat our founders to come together and channel resources toward Aegis, and particularly into research. There can be no hope of coexistence with this alien species unless we increase our understanding of them.”

    No official responses to Utopia’s proposal have been made as yet. However, Prime Minister Edmund Mahon, Princess Aisling Duval and Shadow President Felicia Winters have all signalled broad approval of the idea. There are reports that many congressmen, councillors and senators are pressuring their respective leaders to attend the diplomatic conference.

    Simguru Pranav Antal has confirmed that the governments of independent systems will also be welcome to send delegates to the Galactic Summit. However, Utopia’s primary aim is to provide neutral territory for the Alliance, Empire and Federation to debate policies.

  • November 27, 3306
  • The Shadow of War

    NMLA terrorist attacks and the Marlinist refugee crisis have driven an increase in military spending from both the Empire and the Federation.

    The Federal Times has reported on President Zachary Hudson’s actions:

    “Building on the public outcry following the Neo-Marlinist bombing of a Federal starport, President Hudson has positioned himself once again as the Federation’s strongman. This is clearly a calculated effort to regain political power after negative associations from the Starship One trial.”

    “Shadow President Felicia Winters’s acceptance of Marlinist refugees has lost popularity, now that terrorists concealed among them have murdered thousands. However, cooler heads in Congress agree that provoking the Empire could lead to a far greater death toll.”

    The Empire’s response mirrored its counterpart, as observed by The Imperial Herald:

    “As well as the construction of new capital ships, Senator Denton Patreus has also ordered the withdrawal of funding for Aegis. The Senate’s consensus is that since Thargoid activity has reduced, the focus should now be on the Federation as well as the internal threat of the NMLA.”

    “Cooperation between the superpowers is rapidly coming to an end, leading to a state of interstellar brinkmanship. There is a real possibility that the Neo-Marlinists’ demand for revolutionary change may have broader repercussions than they intended.”

  • November 20, 3306
  • Superpowers React to Latest NMLA Strike

    Relations between the Empire and the Federation have deteriorated following a terror attack by Neo-Marlinists against a Federal starport.

    Kepler Orbital in the Atropos system was bombed by the NMLA to eliminate several of its captured members, before they could reveal anything under interrogation by the Federal Security Service.

    Imperial Ambassador Imogen Luciana made this statement:

    “The NMLA was obviously able to make use of its bomb-making factories within the LTT 1935 system. If the Federation had not resisted our investigation, we would have shut these down and prevented the attack.”

    “Our warning about the extremist threat went unheeded, and the Federation is now paying the price. We once again insist that all Marlinists are repatriated to the Empire.”

    Ambassador Jordan Rochester has not responded, but did confirm that Federal embassies in several Imperial systems have closed after violent anti-Marlinist protests placed diplomatic staff’s lives at risk.

    In Congress, Vice President Brad Mitchell directly blamed Shadow President Felicia Winters for the recent attack. He accused her of “laying out the welcome mat for terrorists” by offering sanctuary to the Marlinists. Other congressmen argued that she had prioritised aid for Imperial rather than Federal citizens.

    There is evidence that Winters is now losing some of her recently gained political capital. However, the Liberal Party’s popularity remains high in the wake of President Hudson’s alleged association with the destruction of Starship One.

  • November 6, 3306
  • Terrorism Spreads as Superpower Conflicts Increase

    Neo-Marlinist extremists are continuing their campaign of terror, while the Empire and Federation clash over issues caused by Marlinist refugees.

    The Imperial Herald has featured updates on terrorist activity across the Empire:

    “The NMLA has claimed responsibility for over fifty bomb attacks during the last three weeks. These mostly targeted local authority buildings and security forces, killing hundreds. Hit squads have also assassinated several high-profile individuals connected to the Duvals, including the Emperor’s relative Baron Cesare Lavigny.”

    “Senior IISS leaders have admitted to being unprepared for how organised and well-equipped the paramilitary group is. Critics suggest that the mass arrest of Marlinists may have radicalised many people who were already sympathetic to the republican ideology.”

    The Federal Times has focused on the tensions between superpowers:

    “With diplomatic channels closing down, the possibility that the confrontation in LTT 1935 might escalate into all-out war cannot be ignored. There is added pressure from the exodus of millions of Marlinists, whose beliefs align with the Federation’s democratic principles.”

    “President Hudson is still suffering from reduced congressional support, and many have said that it feels like Felicia Winters is running the show. But although her humanitarian efforts undoubtedly saved many refugees’ lives, the acceptance of Imperial outcasts into Federal society remains in question.”

  • October 26, 3306
  • Congress Votes to Accept Marlinist Immigrants

    The Federation will grant sanctuary to Marlinist political refugees from the Empire, following a congressional vote in favour of Felicia Winters.

    President Zachary Hudson had stated that illegal immigrants in the Federal systems Charunder, Ennead, HIP 36081, LTT 1935, LTT 3607 and Thetis would be detained and returned to Imperial space. This was challenged by Shadow President Felicia Winters, who argued that they deserved a more compassionate response.

    Congress debated and then voted on her proposal, which received majority support. Government funding will soon be released to provide resources and accommodation for the refugee population.

    Shadow President Winters told the media:

    “Charities such as Safeguard Interstellar are already doing excellent work, but now we can officially offer safe haven and temporary citizenship to all Marlinists.”

    “These innocent people only seek what we in the Federation take for granted – democracy, fairness and political representation. Their values are closer to ours than the Empire’s, and we have an obligation to protect them.”

    Several newsfeeds, including The Federal Times and Sol Today, commented that President Hudson’s authority has been undermined by his refusal to comment on the charges against Fleet Admiral Vincent. The accompanying rumours of corruption and conspiracy have had a demoralising effect on his supporters, and increased the Liberal Party’s popularity.

  • October 19, 3306
  • Political Turmoil for President Hudson

    Political support for Federal President Zachary Hudson has plummeted after the results of a trial concerning Starship One’s destruction.

    Fleet Admiral Lucas Vincent was charged with sabotaging the presidential vessel, leading to hundreds of deaths. His close relationship with Hudson has triggered a public outcry and accusations of a conspiracy to assassinate then-President Jasmina Halsey.

    Political analyst Vihaan Niven reported on the situation:

    “The Republican Party is officially in a state of crisis. President Hudson has refused to make any statement regarding Fleet Admiral Vincent, despite pressure piling up from all corners of the Federation. Over a dozen congressmen have resigned in protest, refusing to be associated with what some newsfeeds are calling ‘the crime of the century’.”

    “Shadow President Felicia Winters has stopped short of making direct allegations against Hudson but, in several powerful speeches, she stressed that no elected ruler can ever be above the law.”

    “Opinion polls suggest that the Liberal Party now has majority support for the first time in years, and that many people view Hudson as a symbol of corruption. In 3305, halfway through his term of office, the President won the scheduled congressional vote of no confidence by a slim margin. It is doubtful that his administration would survive if it were to be held today.”

  • September 18, 3306
  • Arrest Made in Starship One Criminal Case

    An officer in the Federal Navy Engineering Corps has been arrested for sabotaging the presidential vessel Starship One.

    A statement was made by Milandu Okoro of the Federal Attorney’s Office:

    “Chief Technician Rory Webster was a department head of engineering for Starship One. Testimonies from members of Mr Webster’s team claim that he ordered unauthorised adjustments to the ship’s hyperdrive systems while in drydock, shortly before its launch in May 3301 and subsequent destruction.”

    “This case is now being brought before the Federal High Court, where Mr Webster will stand trial for mass murder and attempted treason.”

    There has been no comment from President Zachary Hudson, but Shadow President Felicia Winters told the press:

    “This was a truly horrific tragedy, and there must be justice for all those who lost their lives on that sad day.”

    The apparent death of many Federation leaders aboard Starship One resulted in Winters briefly becoming acting president, shortly before Hudson won a vote of no confidence. There has been much media attention regarding how this event proved pivotal to both of their political careers.

  • December 29, 3304
  • Week in Review

    Here are this week’s main stories.

    Federal Shadow President Felicia Winters has appointed Isolde Rochester as the deputy leader of the Federation’s Liberal Party. The new Shadow Vice President is the matriarch of the powerful Rochester family, which includes the CEO of Core Dynamics and two Federal Navy officers. Vice President Rochester said she was honoured to accept the position.

    Imperial senators supporting the isolationist group Nova Imperium have demanded that Emperor Arissa Lavigny-Duval acknowledge its figurehead, Hadrian Augustus Duval. Chancellor Anders Blaine responded by saying that Nova Imperium was a fringe organisation with no right to determine policy. The Emperor’s lack of response has led to accusations of weakness, with many calling on her to step down.

    In other news, Simguru Pranav Antal has claimed that the nanomedicines developed by Vitadyne Labs were in fact developed in Utopia. In a statement, Simguru said the nanomedicines were never intended for use outside of Utopia, and demanded their immediate return.

    The leaders of the Alliance and the Federation have commented on the rise of Nova Imperium. Alliance Prime Minister Edmund Mahon said the unrest afflicting the Empire would be a concern if it affected inter-superpower cooperation, while Federal President Zachary Hudson said the Federation would be forced to intervene if Nova Imperium came to power and the Empire ceased contributions to Aegis.

    Meanwhile, the Federal Navy has requested a large shipment of Duradrive personal computers from manufacturer Herculean Machines. Maddox Hurd, the company’s CEO, said the request was a testament to the Duradrive’s reliability. Herculean has placed an open order for various commodities to fulfil the request.

    Finally, twin initiatives to supply Imperial senator Simone Leatrix’s festivities have reached a successful conclusion. As the campaigns drew to a close, Senator Leatrix said she hoped the sight of her glittering mountaintop retreat would serve as an inspiration amid the current civil disquiet.

    And those are the main stories this week.

  • December 26, 3304
  • Isolde Rochester becomes Shadow Vice President

    Federal Shadow President Felicia Winters has appointed Isolde Rochester as the deputy leader of the Federation’s Liberal Party.

    The new Shadow Vice President made a statement to the media:

    “After a decade of serving in Congress, supporting both President Halsey and Shadow President Winters, it is an honour to accept this position. Many challenges face the Federation, and the Liberal Party is ready to meet them.”

    The former deputy leader, Edgar Santiago, recently made the sudden decision to retire from politics and purchase a private luxury starship, despite not being known for extravagant spending.

    Isolde Rochester is the matriarch of the powerful Rochester family, which includes the CEO of Core Dynamics and two Federal Navy officers. Rumours suggest that she called off the wedding of her son Ambasador Jordan Rochester when suggestions arose of Princess Aisling Duval’s infidelity.

  • July 7, 3304
  • A Profile of Jordan Rochester

    Responding to public interest in Princess Aisling Duval’s fiancé, Federal Ambassador Jordan Rochester, political journalist Cassia Carvalho has compiled a profile for The Imperial Herald:

    “Jordan Rochester is now a household name throughout the Empire, though few were aware of him prior to his engagement to Princess Duval. But in the Federation, the Rochesters have been associated with success for over two hundred years.”

    “The Rochester name can be traced back to self-made tycoon Apollo Rochester, who was the biggest landowner on Biggs Colony in the Altair system. Each generation since has strived for fame and wealth, and the expression ‘as rich as a Rochester’ has become common parlance.”

    “The family matriarch is Isolde Rochester. She is a member of Congress, an influential figure in the Liberal Party and a staunch supporter of Shadow President Felicia Winters. Isolde raised five children, including Jordan, and it was her accomplishments that inspired her son to enter politics.”

    “Jordan’s siblings chose different paths. The eldest, Jupiter Rochester, is an executive with Core Dynamics, with a personal fortune in the billions. Fifteen years ago he had his own celebrity marriage, to actor Tomas Turai. They now have two teenage children, daughter Kali and son Kalen.”

    “Jordan’s sisters, Juno and Jocasta, have impressive Navy careers, holding the ranks of Vice Admiral and Post Captain respectively. Only Jordan’s younger brother, Jonah, has no title. He is believed to be the black sheep of the family.”

    “Despite being just 34, Jordan has already made his mark. He has overseen several high-level negotiations on behalf of the Federal Diplomatic Corps and is now a trusted envoy, noted for his charm and tact.”

    “His future will be interesting, to say the least. How will he balance being both a Federal statesman and an Imperial consort? And what are the wider ramifications of the Rochester dynasty aligning with the House of Duval? Even more so than his predecessors, Jordan Rochester has already ensured that history will remember his family’s name.”