[ARC] AAR of Operation Astraea (raid of the Svarog Clade Orbital Shipyards in Skarkon)

Greetings,

This will be an after action report of Operation Astraea; a raid on the Svarog Clade Orbital Shipyards in Skarkon, led by ARC. It will include the reasoning behind the raid, details regarding the raid and aftermatch. For those who are only interested in the short version: a summary will be at the bottom of the report.

REASONING BEHIND THE RAID
ARC considers the Svarog Clade Orbital Shipyards (SCOS) to be a big and ongoing threat to those living within Empire space. As reported in our observation reports on the SCOS; it is believed that 108 units of the Svarog clade variation(s) of the Zirnitra dreadnought are under construction inside the SCOS and that activity at the SCOS has increased. Because of this and the many unknowns regarding the details regarding Triglavian structures, their objectives and the Zirnitra dreadnoughts being build, ARC has always considered the SCOS to be site of high priority and interest.

Plans to raid the SCOS were started with the report that EDENCOM was able to raid the Veles Clade Rogue Drone “Semiosis Sobornost” after capsuleers repeatedly disrupted the complex with EM bombs. As both the SCOS and Veles Clade Rogue Drone structures in Wirashoda were observed to have identical looking structures, it is assumed that these structures can be disrupted using EM bombs.

PREPERATIONS FOR THE RAID
Preparations began with scouting the SCOS and finding the correct locations for the EM bombs to be detonating. Using simulations, it was quickly determined that it was not possible to hit the 3 Shipyard towers and 6 Pylons with a single point of detonation. As such, bombs would have to be launched at 2 separate locations to make sure all towers and pylons would be hit with each bombing run. In addition to these 2 target locations, multiple attack vectors were plotted to allow for multiple directions of attack. Each attack vector included multiple locations at different intervals. This allowed the bombing runs to be less predictable and harder to prevent or disrupt.


Top down view of the SCOS with the yellow dots indicating the 2 target locations

With the means to attack prepared, support ships and critical assets were moved into Skarkon shortly before executing operation Astraea.

The 1st phase of Operation Astraea: bombing runs
Operation Astaea took place on YC 124-09-03, as originally scheduled. On this day, the fleet started gathering in the system of Isanamo at 18:30 EST. The fleet moved to the system of Autama to enter the Pochven system of Nani through a wormhole connection. The fleet entered Skarkon from Nani and took up position near the SCOS to prepare for the bombing runs. It was unfortunate that several pilots were unable to join the fleet at the last moment but there were enough Purifier bombers to proceed.

2 Squads were formed but they did not have the same amount of bombers. This provided a golden opportunity to gather important data on the vulnerability of Triglavian structures and technology to EM disruption. This was possible as both target locations were positioned in such a way that the central Tower and central 2 pylons would be in the blast radius of both squads. At the same time one of the outwards towers and pylons would be hit by the squad with the most bombers and the other outward tower and pylons would be hit by the squad with the least amount of bombers. This meant that the towers and pylons were exposed to different amount of EM bombs and should therefore show different degrees of disruption.

The 1st bombing run hit at roughly 19:40 EST and the 32nd and final bombing run hit at roughly 21:57 EST. During this time a total of 275 electron bombs have been launched at the SCOS. As there was little room for error, not all bombs managed to detonate at the intended target locations. The most cautious estimates still show that at least 250 electron bombs did detonate at their intended location and at most 6 bombs failed to deliver their payload completely.

The bombing runs were briefly complicated and interrupted/delayed by the arrival of several Kikimora destroyers and 1 Orthrus cruiser that showed up at the SCOS. The Kikimora destroyers belonged to Stribog Clade and several capsuleers were very vocal through the local current router but their messages were ignored.

Initially the Kikimora destroyers and Orthrus were out of position to prevent the bombing runs as they were gathered at the beacon that marks the SCOS location. This meant that one bombing run was performed with zero additional risk as the hostile ships were at least 100km away. The hostile ships quickly corrected this by positioning themselves between and around the Shipyard towers.
While adjusting to the hostile ships on grid and identifying the correct attack vectors to be used, the hostile ships warped away and the bombing runs were resumed. The hostile ships returned a little while later to take up their defensive positions again. Once again, while adjusting and identifying the correct attack vectors, the hostile ships warped off and this time they did not return. While the exact reason for withdrawal remains unknown, it is assumed that the high capsuleer traffic and presence of an Ishtar and Cerberus fleet were the likely cause.

With the direct threat of hostiles hips on grid over, the delay between bombing runs became minimal. When the bombers needed to rearm, there would be a 6 minute interval between the bombing runs. When the bombers were fully armed, the bombing runs would be performed within 3 minutes of each other .
The reloading of the bombers happened almost exclusively in space in order to minimize exposure and risk. A blockade runner industrial was moved into Skarkon before the bombers and its cargo bay was filled with containers with electron bombs. Every time the bombers needed to rearm, they would all travel to the location of the blockade runner and reload their bomb launcher and fill their cargo bay with additional bombs.

The 2nd phase of Operatio Astraea: the raid
After the last bombing run was completed, it was time to start the 2nd phase of Operation Astaea. Several bombers moved to the systems surrounding Skarkon to monitor and report all traffic heading towards Skarkon and one bomber monitored the situation on the SCOS grid. The remaining pilots reshipped. I personally piloted the Astraea, a repurposed Mastodon class deep space transport. The others reshipped into Scimitars and a Scythe class logistical cruisers and they escorted the Astaea to the SCOS grid. Once on grid, the Astraea would fly towards all Shipyard towers and pylons in order to deploy groups of 1,950 marines. In total 31,200 marines were deployed to raid the SCOS and they had the following objectives:

  • To work alongside and with any EDENCOM forces, should they be deployed;
  • To report on the degree by which the EM bombs had disrupted the Shipyard towers and/or Pylons;
  • To gather as much intelligence as possible on the SCOS, the Zirnitra dreadnoughts under construction, the method of construction and the objectives of the Triglavian Collective;
  • To recover any objects or materials of interest;
  • To sabotage and disrupt the SCOS as much as possible.

In addition to these objectives, the deployed marines were instructed not to hand over any collected intelligence if EDENCOM forces were encountered.

The marines had a 30 minute window in which to perform the raid and to extract themselves back to the Astraea that was waiting for them in a holding pattern in the SCOS. The reason for this small window is that it was expected that the Triglavian Collective would be aware of the objective of the raid and would send reinforcements and any defending forces inside the SCOS would be to dug in to continue the raid after this time. This prediction turned out to be true as Kikimora destroyers from Stribog clade entered the SCOS just as the Astraea had recovered the last of the marines and warped out of the SCOS with its logistical cruiser escorts.

A wormhole was used to return to Empire space. The Astraea was escorted through several low security systems until it was able to reach the CONCORD HQ in Yulai through high security space. The Astraea and the marines are currently under a self-imposed quarantine. Once this quarantine is over, the marines will be waiting to be debriefed by CONCORD.

Aftermath
A lot of thought has been given as to who should debrief the involved marines and where. With the current situation surrounding EDENCOM and the growing tension between the 4 Empires, ARC has chosen CONCORD and CONCORD HQ in Yulai.

The Triglavian Collective has proven to be a threat to all who live within Empire space. It is a threat that is best dealt with by a united front from the 4 Empires, working together. As such it is important that all 4 Empires have access to the same information and any materials recovered from the raid. ARC is not sure if this can be achieved through EDENCOM, given the most recent developments surrounding EDENCOM and the 4 Empires. As such, CONCORD was a logical choice and their HQ would be the best location. ARC will continue to monitor and care for the crew and marines onboard the Astraea and after debriefing, the marines will be returned to their respective organisations.

A word of thanks
ARC considers Operation Astraea to have been a success as all objectives have been achieved without losing any ships or leaving marines behind. ARC would like to express its gratitude to the following people and organisations that have supported Operation Astraea:

  • The individual Capsuleers and crew of the Purifier bombers and support ships during operation Astraea;
  • The 7.800 Amarr marines belonging to Dark Sefrim Six and Lunarisse Aspenstar, who provided them on behalf of Khimi Harar;
  • The 7.800 Caldari marines and Naava Edios, who provided them on behalf of Phoenix Naval Systems;
  • The 7.800 Gallente marines belonging to ‘Conflict Resolution Detachment CRD’ and Mortis Astarte, who provided them on behalf of Convocation of Empyreans;
  • The 7.800 Minmatar marines belonging to ‘Undosa Met’aa marine core’ and Khaprice, who provided them on behalf of Aesir Arcology.

Brief summary
On the day of YC 124-09-03, a raid on the Svarog Clade Orbital Shipyards was performed by an ARC lead fleet. In order to make sure to hit all 3 Shipyard towers and 6 Pylons, two squads of Purifier bombers performed 32 bombing runs at 2 separate locations between the 3 Shipyard towers. The first bombing run hit at roughly 19:40 EST and the final bombing run hit at roughly 21:57 EST. During these bombing runs a total of 275 electron bombs have been launched and it is estimated that at least 250 electron bombs hit their intended targets and only 6 failed to deliver their payload completely. The central Shipyard tower and central 2 Pylons were inside the blast radius of both squads. The 2 Shipyard towers and 4 Pylons on the outside were inside the blast radius of only 1 squad of bombers.
Several Kikimora class destroyers and one Orthrus class cruiser were able to delay some of the bombing runs. These ships being piloted to mostly Stribog Clade capsuleers objected to the bombing runs and tried to disrupt them by positioning themselves close to the Shipyard towers and Pylons. They did not succeed in destroying any Purifiers and left after a short while.

After the bombing runs were completed, a refitted Mastodon hauler was brought into the SCOS in order to deliver a total of 31.200 marines (7.800 marines originating from each Empire). These marines were deployed to the Shipyards towers and Pylons. Their objective was to work alongside any deployed EDENCOM forces, gather and recover as much information and materials as possible without handing it over to EDENCOM forces and disrupt or sabotage the ongoing construction of the ships in the SCOS as much as possible. According to schedule, the last of the deployed marines were recovered roughly 30 minutes after deployment and the fleet left the SCOS just as hostile forces entered the site.
The Mastodon was successfully escorted out of Skarkon and is currently located in the CONCORD HQ in Yulai. After quarantine is observed, the marines will be awaiting debriefing by CONCORD after which they will be returned to their respective organisations.

Regards,

DutchGunner
(ARC Fleet Commander)

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Good work, to all involved.

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So ARC and independent capsuleers that have only previously acted under accordance of EDENCOM directive, who now claim that they themselves are EDENCOM and unilaterally act as such without the approval or operational oversight of the constituent empire militaries went out of their way to execute an offensive raid on what they claim is an existential strategic target necessary to safeguard humanity. This is despite the fact, of course, that the war is a frozen conflict and has been for roughly two years without any major escalation outside of small settlements and raids in areas already considered Triglavian minor victory systems within their sphere of influence. All while each of the empires has expressed on some level a normalization of relations in the future that would imply that the Collective is not an existential Boogeyman that threatens humanity like ARC infantily claims but the same as any other nation-state capable of diplomacy.

When Svarog fleets arrive to glass Empire shipyards, fleets, and factories in realiation for this raid and diplomatic progress is sent back to zero, I sincerely hope each Empire remembers who is responsible. EDENCOM pilots think as though they have the right to act with impunity with the power they’ve been given, even if at odds with empire sovereignty. Any sensible diplomat would see that and begin steps to reign in and ultimately dismantle this renegade, unaccountable organization before they can do any more damage.

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Mr. Eskola-Fae, you really do give us far too much credit. To think that ARC could change the course of human history!

Flattering, really, if it didn’t involve so much spittle on your part.

To other pilots, though, I extend an invitation for more constructive discussion.

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So you’re response criticism for carrying out an unprovoked attack across the border of a frozen conflict while claiming to act as and under the authority of a multi-empire military alliance despite being glorified independent contractors gone rogue is–

“Don’t worry about it, it’s no big deal trust me. Next question.”

ARC is really demonstrating the infantilism at the core of it’s ethos and strategy in engaging with the Collective. Definitely the level of forethought and maturity you want to have executing raids on hostile nations under the banner of EDENCOM.

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No, Mr. Eskola-Fae, my response is that you flail about angrily due to independent Capsuleers engaging in military action, which is exactly what we’re made for. I understand that your background as a clone soldier predisposes you to think in terms of nations and formalized warfare, right down to your hopefully-no-longer active desire to wrest space away from the empires for a warclone sovereignty, but you’ve missed an important detail:

There has been no normalization of relations with the Collective to date. If that should occur, the Arataka Research Consortium will reassess its position. However, a ‘frozen conflict’ is not in truth a normalization to peace time standards. You must’ve missed the continued low-level combat between Collective and Empire forces, and the assorted resistance campaigns on-going on various worlds, all signs of a conflict that is on-going.

DutchGunner, in his capacity as an ARC fleet commander, engaged in an operation with the aim of ideally disrupting hostile ship-building capacity to whatever degree possible, and gathering intelligence to relay to EDENCOM/CONCORD forces.

Beyond that, if you do feel so strongly about ARC’s operations, then I welcome your organizing and militating for actions that support your personal politics. I’ll inquire about those elsewhere.

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I just glanced back over the Report and nowhere did they make this claim. They stated several times they were acting with EDENCOM, or in friendly relation to, but nowhere said they were EDENCOM.

This is truly another day ending in Y for the average Capsuleer. What is your point?

With the Milita wars, Capsuleers are well trained in flicking with old conflicts that don’t seem to go any where. This is also nothing new.

Nation Uplifts a few ten thousand people and the Cluster as a whole decries them as the great enemy, existential threat to humanity, etc. Twelve years on and still that fire will not die. But two years on from stealing entire systems and millions of people we’re supposed to sit back and relax? Flower that, and caress you tenderly you with all due respect.

Much like the Amarr and Minmatar conflict, there would far less in the way of reprisals if you gave back the people and planets.

Edit: Defending the Triglavians is allowed, certain words are not. Edited certain words in my post to be in alignment with IGS Communications Director guidelines.

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Speaking as an external party, I do commend the extensive details of the report above, however, despite Mr. Eskola-Fae’s generally aggressive attitude, an escalation is indeed an escalation, despite my general dislike for the Svarog Clade, I don’t expect they’ll… ‘take it sitting down’ as they say.

It should be expected that a return escalation may occur, because of this, well intentioned as it may be.

I also expect either Veles or Perun to take advantage of the disruption themselves. If what I’ve heard through my own dealings in the Krais is any indicator, they may already be doing so.

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True enough that full peacetime standards have not been enacted but thats far from a universal standard. Militia conflicts between paramilitaries like the very one ARC just carried out are commonplace between empires that otherwise maintain longstanding, deep economic and political ties. You wouldn’t say the State and Federation don’t maintain normal relations because of this. So its messy, I’ll grant you that, and I’m not going to pearl clutch at paramilitary action. In fact, its more or less a page right out of my own textbook and all considered a fun show to watch.

The problem is the road to normal relations is a gradient process and one that, despite what you’ve implied, has already begun. This isn’t a binary, but a sliding scale that over the last two years despite continued conflict has drifted toward an eventual peace. What else can you make if initial reports that were later substantiated of CONCORD and EDENCOM preparing for that reality and establishing diplomatic channels with the Collective even while they rattle their sabres to the public.

CONCORD Inner Circle Reportedly Considering “EDENCOM Intelligence Report on Diplomatic Opportunities with Triglavian Clades”

Yulai, Genesis – Confidential sources with access to CONCORD’s Inner Circle have told the Scope’s Galactic Hour with Ret Gloriaxx that the top council of the interstellar security and diplomacy organization has given “serious consideration to a report from EDENCOM Intelligence on diplomatic opportunities with Triglavian clades”.

The cognitive dissonance is a little hard to ignore when ARC claims they are justified in carrying out a bombing raid due to a lack of diplomatic relations with the Collective, framing them as a sort of alien threat to humanity, when leaks from the Inner Circle seem to imply the very opposite. If they were truly the inhuman threat to humanity no different from the Drifters than what am I to make of direct reports to the contrary that negotiation is, in fact, possible.

Like I said, its a scale-- And ARC seems keen to push it toward the direction of Forever War. That can be very dangerous when their relationship coordinating with “deployed EDENCOM forces” in a Svarog naval facility is left unclear.

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Ah. I just spent a few moments looking up Mr. Eskola-Fae’s current associations, and I see that his Varyazi Clade corporation is focused on serving as mercenaries for the Collective in Skarkon, where the operation occurred.

Honestly, that motivator is all I really needed to know.

Carrying on.

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You allowed 31,000 marines to wander the halls of a mutaplasmic Triglavian station then you delivered them straight into the headquarters of Edencom?!

I mean… I don’t know what to say. Thanks?

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It’s almost like when you claim “there has been no steps towards normalization with the collective toward peace” the person on the other side of the trench might be intrinsically motivated to go “hey, you’re wrong, here is evidence showing you are wrong.”

Again, classic ARC infantilsm in responding to the emergence of the Collective on full display; negating genuine criticism and supporting evidence with this childish “ummmm I read your bio and post history, blocked!” attempt at snark.

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With due respect, decontamination protocols are a known process at this point.

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Why would we ever want to have peace with the Trigs? I’m all for this strike, hell if I had known it would have happened, I would have pitched in some isk for it! Tell me next time, yeah?

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I have to say, I’m with my colleague here. Frankly, I’ve been with ARC longer than you’ve been around and your generalizations aren’t really valid and more shouting into the void. I don’t think something can be “classic” just because you dub it so.

Carrying on.

Lady Lasairiona Raske
CEO and Head Diplomat of ARC

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I mean, is anyone shocked that Galm’s full of crap?

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Congratulations for the successful operation!

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After the breach of the Omega Alpha security protocol, the EDENCOM Defensive Initiative may no longer play an active role in this war. We nevertheless welcome the active role of the ARC Consortium, and we will continue to reconcile data leading to the return of the normal situation before the Triglavian invasion.

We are available on all communication channels for further questions.

And Congratulations for that Operation !

P.S. This is the reason why…

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It will never cease to amuse me how quickly those that so violently undermined the sovereignty of the four great nations cry foul the moment they get even the slightest taste of retaliation.

Congratulations to ARC for a well-conducted operation. May those loyal to the nations the Triglavians wronged never cease our efforts to reclaim the stolen systems.

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It’s always their supposed followers, too. Does the Collective ever complain about getting attacked by us? Have they done that even once? I even get the sense they welcome it. “Oh ho! These young ones are showing some teeth after all!” sort of thing.

I wonder what they think of it when their servants whine on their behalf.

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