Carl Simmons, chief medical officer at Newton Dock in the BD-02 4304 system, spoke at a health summit over the weekend. His keynote address was on the Cerberus plague.
"The original Cerberus plague spread to over 30 systems inside a month, putting billions of lives at risk," said Simmons. "It is unlikely we would have been able to eradicate the disease had the cure been discovered any later, as ceremonial Heike tea would not have been available in sufficient quantities. Trillions could have perished."
"We cannot afford to underestimate this new strain of Cerberus plague, and I urge the medical community to take the outbreak seriously. If Heike tea is not delivered in sufficient quantities, or if this strain proves resistant to the tea's effects, the consequences could be catastrophic."
A summit for the Alliance of Independent Systems was held at Irkutsk Station this week, attended by ambassadors and diplomatic envoys from an array of political backgrounds. Eleven fleets, from both Alliance and Independent governments, were represented.
The main topic under discussion was establishing a framework for a quick-response force to protect parties from the growing threat of Imperial and Federal expansion. Other Topics included factional sovereignty, self governance, the benefits of free trade, and the role of communication in maintaining civility across diverse cultures.
Commander Noir1787 | Radio Sidewinder reporter
Alioth Guardian | Interstellar Press
Maxim 'VicTic' Kammerer, chief engineer of the Carmack Intergalactic Mining Association, has released a statement concerning the ongoing CIMA prospectors' competition:
"We are very pleased that, with your help, we have been able to double the amount of known pristine metallic ring locations, most of which are very close to the bubble. Now we need to prepare for the final sprint."
The competition will end on the 3rd of April 3302. Any data on pristine metallic rings should be reported before this date.
Theta Wave News
Ackerman Market in Eravate is just one of the stations affected by the plague. Before it was shut down it was a popular rest stop for Commanders embarking on new careers in space. Just a few days ago its commodities market reopened, and a huge demand for meta-alloys has been reported.
Responding to this, an alliance comprising Commanders Kermit Laphroaig, ThatDamnRanga, Ollobrains, Zenith Ddraiglas and others has formed, which hopes to saturate the market at Ackerman with meta-alloys so the starport can be restored to working order.
A joint statement reads:
"Everyone wants Ackerman online, so we're putting aside our differences to make it happen. We hope Commanders of all allegiances will join us in this collaborative effort, which starts immediately and will run until the station is operational again."
Commander Lord Zoltan
The first season of the Galactic Combat Championship has come to a spectacular finish. Competitors in the five-week tournament included Adle's Armada, Blood Brothers from Alrai, Ronin of Amarak, Triadius, Contrail, and the Balkan Intergalactic Guerrillas.
Fifteen matches of three rounds were fought every weekend for five weeks, concluding with a spectacular eight vs. eight, winner-take-all match in front of a live audience. Despite many exciting moments, near wins and losses there could be only victor, and that victor was Adle's Armada.
The Armada was a favourite going into the tournament, but few expected them to win every match. The leaders of Adle's Armada gave praise to their competitors: Commanders Poaarctica, Breakfastmelon, Philip J Fry, Truesilver, Finegan, Memoocan, Thatdamnranga and Cosmic Booty.
The second season of the championship is due to start soon, and will is likely feature more groups and match modifiers than the first. Fans of the tournament are already placing bets on the season two winner.
A spokesperson for the Canonn Interstellar Research Group has issued a plea for a final push in the campaign to establish a research outpost at Thompson Dock:
"The response from the community has been incredible, but we need more palladium!"
"I know you're tired, but this project is too important for us to give up. I've been living on a particularly strong blend of Varatian coffee, and I understand the local suppliers have made it freely available to all miners. It's great stuff if you don't mind a few heart palpitations."
"We really want to hit the next milestone so we can get a commodities market at the station. If we can do that, Dr Arcanonn will be able to do what he does best."
"So please come and mine for the Canonn between now and Thursday afternoon. The rewards are huge, and the camaraderie among the miners is fantastic."
Commander Lord Zoltan
Various media outlets throughout inhabited space received an anonymous communiqué this morning. "The galactic community is in peril," the message began. "They just don't know it yet."
The transmission asserts a connection between Core Dynamics, the destruction of the Antares and Starship One, the Emperor's Dawn insurgency, and setbacks in Unknown Artefact research. It also claims that the deaths of Federal Vice-President Nigel Smeaton, Sean Richards, Arnold Lowe, Susan Monroe, Elaine Boyd, Emperor Hengist Duval and the disappearances of former Federal president Jasmina Halsey and Professor Ishmael Palin are similarly connected.
The message concluded: "Many of those who have tried to connect these seemingly disparate events have been silenced, along with their sources. That is why I have chosen to remain anonymous. So far, only pawns have been revealed in this shadowy game. We must discover the king."
Neither the Federation nor the Empire has chosen to comment on the transmission.
Verity Gavroche, official correspondent for the Canonn Interstellar Research Group, has spoken to Dr Arcanonn about an exciting new discovery:
"Over the weekend I was contacted by a Commander Engalo, who told me he'd observed an interaction between the Unknown Artefacts and the barnacle 'flowers' – the source of the meta-alloys."
"Both the barnacles and the artefacts have features we've nicknamed 'fireflies' – bright specks of light that appear to move of their own volition. Engalo has observed that if you place an artefact near a barnacle, their respective fireflies start flying around together. This continues until the UA is removed."
"I can't thank Commander Engalo enough for bringing this to my attention. With the new lab the community is helping us build, we'll soon be able to observe this behaviour under controlled conditions."
Commander Lord Zoltan
An official inquiry from the Congressional Oversight Committee has been launched after reports surfaced of a pirate-aligned Farragut Battle Cruiser striking out at Federation battle groups in the LHS 3447, Fuleum and HIP 16996 systems. The inquiry will also investigate unconfirmed reports of a rogue battle cruiser outside Federation space in the Maia system.
Speaking under condition of anonymity, a source within the closed-door hearing said: "The scans said it was a Farragut and the Navy said it was a Farragut, but it's not one of ours and it had no clear identification code."
Commander Tyrit Shadowstalker
Controversial chef Oliver Gordon was humiliated yesterday when he lost his battle over the 'PanGalactic' trademark. The cordon bleu has been forced to close his restaurant to meet spiralling legal costs.
The case began when the Pan Galactic Mining Corp issued a writ demanding that Gordon change the name of his 'PanGalactic' restaurant and pay substantial damages for infringing on intellectual property.
A spokesperson for the Pan Galactic Mining Corp released the following statement:
"The Pan Galactic Mining Corp has a right to defend its brand, but we are disappointed that Chef Gordon did not accept our offer to become our preferred catering partner."
Gordon gave a characteristically colourful response:
"I'm the galaxy's greatest artisan chef and I will not degrade my art for anyone. I'd rather eat a printed hotdog than work for Pan Galactic making sandwiches for business seminars."
Commander Matzov and Commander Gan
Zaonce Market Circular | Interstellar Press
With less than a week until the Spring Break race, the Buckyball Racing Club is running a short 'Midweek Madness' event to get racers warmed up.
'Buckey Ball Raleigh' is a fuel-restricted race from Buckey Ring in NLTT 57216, via Ball Dock in CD-37 641, to Raleigh Orbital in Ross 720. The race is open to all but will run for just three days, from the 15th to the 17th March 3302.
Accusations of reckless endangerment have been levelled at the Buckyball Racing Club regarding its upcoming Spring Break chauffeurs event. Commander Seneh, the event organiser, had this to say:
"This event is a community outreach programme. There will be no 'first place', or prizes. While it is true that the club will give performance scores to participating pilots, those scores will be based on the happiness and safety of the escorted students, not on distance travelled or speed."
She continued: "All participants are Pilots Federation members, but some are still provisional, myself included! We appreciate that having a documented safety rating from a Grant Academics sanctioned event will help our careers, so we intend to respect our passengers and fly with the utmost care."
Veteran Buckyball pilots will escort students from the Exigus campus of Grant Academics to the biggest tourism hotspots in the region between the 18th and 26th of March.
Buckyball Racing Club
Controversial chef Oliver Gordon experienced a different kind of heat today, as he was served with a writ demanding he change the name of his restaurant 'PanGalactic'.
Lawyers for the Pan Galactic Mining Corp told members of the press that: "Our clients want to make clear that this restaurant and its head chef have no connection whatsoever to their corporation. As such, they have served notice regarding the name 'PanGalactic', and will pursue the case vigorously."
Legal experts are intrigued by the case as it could set a precedent for galaxy-wide intellectual property rights. Professor Janus of the Federal Bar Council ventured that: "It would be an interesting case, if it were heard, although it does highlight the need for more closely aligned intellectual property law."
It seems Oliver Gordon's no-holds-barred approach to cuisine may have thrown him from the frying pan into the fire.
"We've heard a lot about these barnacles," said controversial chef Oliver Gordon today outside his restaurant 'PanGalactic', "but the most important question has yet to be asked. How do they taste?"
"I have sampled delicacies from across the galaxy, including Ceti rabbits and Vacuum krill. Now I seek new flavours with which to tantalize my clientele. I intend to create a dish fit for an emperor: space barnacle broth with a Deuringas truffle oil foam and Ochoeng chilli reduction."
When asked about the ethics of eating what could be a sentient being, Gordon was dismissive:
"Food is beyond such concerns. There can be no higher honour than to be lovingly prepared by my highly trained master chefs and served to the galaxy's most demanding connoisseurs."
Professor D Luffy, head of research at Bond Hub in the Varati system, has released a statement about the station's need for meta-alloys:
"My researchers are ready to receive as many meta-alloys as the community can deliver. We're certain we can repeat the success of the Obsidian Orbital engineers and reverse the malfunctions plaguing so many stations in the bubble."
"My colleagues and I understand the concerns about harvesting meta-alloys from the barnacles, but this plague is affecting millions of people and it seems the meta-alloys have been given to us specifically as a cure."
"We do not condone the destruction of barnacle sites, and we are prepared for the possibility that something bad could happen as a result of using the meta-alloys in this way, but we must balance the need for caution against the needs of humanity. So, please, bring your meta-alloys to us and let us do the rest."
Commander Lord Zoltan
Following the recent retirement of the last Saud Kruger Narwhal from the presidential fleet, critics of the Hudson administration have commented on the decision to make use of two Core Dynamics Farragut-class battle cruisers as presidential transport vessels.
In an interview with the Federal Times, Congresswoman Kristine Lasky said: "These aren't industry-standard ships that can be purchased on the market. These are mainline warships – the largest in the Federal Navy's inventory. That the president intends to make use of not one but two of these ships should seriously concern taxpayers."
"Is it necessary for the president to deploy a battle group every time he visits a foreign dignitary? What message does that send to other heads of state? It looks less like a matter of security and more like a show of force!"
Congresswoman Lasky announced that she will call upon the Federal Accountability Office to investigate the acquisition and deployment cost to the taxpayer, and put forward a measure to limit the president's use of the ships to a handful of occasions per fiscal year.
Doctor Elana Lorax, a leading contributor in the field of xeno biology, has released a statement to the media:
"Before we reached for the stars we destroyed countless species on our homeworld. Similarly, the colonization of Tau Ceti, Delta Pavonis, Achenar and many other systems resulted in the mass extinction of native life."
"But humanity has yet to learn its lesson. The cry for meta-alloys is not unlike the lust for beaver-pelt top hats in ancient times. Thousands of barnacles have been destroyed, and for what? Defunct stations can be replaced. If the barnacles are destroyed for their meta-alloys we will lose their secrets forever."
Doctor Lorax continued: "With a little patience we could unlock the secrets of the barnacle. Xeno biologists and chemists could learn to synthesize meta-alloys, given time. Unfortunately it seems humanity is going to destroy another unique lifeform for short-term, and short-sighted, gain."
Responding to the suggestion that more meta-alloys be shipped to stations experiencing technical issues, Dr Arcanonn of the Canonn Interstellar Research Group has issued a statement:
"Many teams from the Canonn Interstellar Research Group have already started collecting meta-alloys. Some have been doing so for many days. But one thing bothers me. The community painstakingly collected and shipped thousands of tonnes of meta-alloys to Obsidian Orbital for Professor Palin. Where did they go? Surely the engineering teams at Obsidian Orbital didn't use them all up?"
"I want to urge personnel at Obsidian Orbital to help us by releasing their remaining stock of meta-alloys to the commodities market. Once the existing supply runs out, we will return to the barnacle sites to collect more."
"Since one of the affected stations is in my home system, I'm as eager as everyone else to deal with these malfunctions. It seems we have the means to fix the problems, so let's do it."
Commander Lord Zoltan
Princess Aisling Duval's recent emancipation effort has been criticised following revelations that over seven million slaves were purchased directly from slavers in the systems surrounding Uibuth. These purchases were made by independent traders supporting the princess's liberation programme.
One Commander, who refused to take part in the programme, said: "I can't see how funding slavers is going to stop the slave trade, unless Aisling expects them to retire now they're wealthy."
Commander Dissident Smith
Verity Gavroche, public correspondent for the Canonn Interstellar Research Group, has been speaking to Dr Arcanonn about his teams' ongoing research:
"I realise the public might think our research has stopped because the barnacles and the Unknown Artefacts have not been in the news, but I can assure you that we are still hard at work. Many Commanders have undertaken expeditions to distant nebulae in the hope of uncovering more barnacles. We've also been working hard to map all the barnacle sites in the Pleiades. In fact, a new site was recently discovered on Pleiades Sector IH-V C2-16 C4."
"We are also trying to understand why the barnacles appear in the Pleiades. Are the raw materials in the nebulae important for their growth? Perhaps the ancient cloud the Pleiades is moving through has long held the 'seeds' for Barnacle growth, and they've only now taken root? We don't know, but we will continue our research."
Commander Lord Zoltan