[Excubitoris Chapter] Duty and Service to Amarr

… nah, that just means they’re not unscrupulous mercenaries. A mercenary is simply an external/private military asset fighting for pay. Whether they allow their conscience to steer their client choices or not doesn’t really affect whether or not they’re mercs.

Have you tried offering good pay? 200b would sway a lot of mercenaries I assume.
Oh. Wait. Woops.

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By that logic, though, you should be equally open with finding fault in the Empress for permitting the inclusion of the Republic in EDENCOM, and with any Imperial loyalists that flew in defense of Republic systems against the Triglavians. After all, inevitably when the Republic Fleet deploys forces in defense of systems in the warzone, they’re using expertise partially developed in the fight against the Triglavian invasion, and material not they have available partially due to losses not suffered in the invasion… because of the Amarr / EDENCOM assistance.

Can’t really have it both ways there, Aldrith. Either the Empress was complicit in conserving the Republic Fleet’s manpower and materiel means of prosecuting campaigns in the warzone, or LUMEN wasn’t preserving EM’s fighting capacity in the warzone.

Did they say why it was refused? I mean, you’re saying ‘a considerable sum’, but you know, you guys thought the money you spent on Chakaid was a huge amount, too. Maybe someone else is paying them more than you offered.

It is good to see that there is at least some reciprocity in your relationship, but their past conduct is not something that can be ignored for us. It is not reductionist to recognize they cooperate with Electus Matari closely, surely have open lines of communication, and will aid one another’s aims at the expense of the Empire’s, making them a threat and an enemy. I have said before and now again that we are willing to reconsider this position if they make assurances and agreements to not do this in the future.

At least some of this will need to be addressed by Mikal Vektor himself, as I have repeatedly advised against any cooperation with outside partly hostile forces, both on principle and to keep the militia away from dependency upon said forces, thus driving and motivating our own growth. Our own forces must be ready and willing at all times to fight on disadvantaged ground, and only by doing so do we strengthen ourselves. This is undermined by calling others for support, especially if they will be hostile in the future. I believe Vektor agrees with this in principle, but in my honest opinion he bends it a bit to readily with entities I am loath to share a truce with, let alone a fleet.

From my observation, however, the fact that this was not a Lux operation makes it worse, as it seems indicative of a willingness to help PNS openly, with little or no compromise for your own interests, nor the interests of other Amarr-aligned capsuleers such as the militia, whom they operate against. PNS have aided LUMEN at least once in Tanoo. But how many times have you aided them? Either LUMEN should try to utilize PNS for Imperial aims more, or place more conditions on the dynamics that allow Electus Matari to get away with not being shot by you so much.

I do not seek to dictate how you conduct your relations, but the optics of this closeness is very poor coming from one who wishes to fight Electus Matari rather than see them gallivanting with the faithful. Anyway, perhaps we should leave the rest of this for a proper meeting, if you are willing. My lady and I found our last meeting somewhat frustrating, and downright infuriating later as one of the primary LUMEN negotiators seemed to completely disregard our words regarding a certain apostate. Perhaps you would be more straightforward and understanding of the matters involved.

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Months of messages, unproductive meetings where House Newelle makes demand after demand while offering nothing in return, public insults, not so veiled threats, and now increasingly hostile relations suggest otherwise.

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Per the CONCORD rules, we would need to declare a war to shoot EM in high sec space. As for shooting them in lowsec or nullsec space. We do when we run into them, something we don’t very often do.

You’ll notice our low sec focus has shifted quite a bit to the caldari-gallente area or operation, at least based on CONCORD sanctioned kill reports. I expect recent development will only push things further in that direction.

This is a reflection of diplomacy from a specific Amarr group making it clear that operation there is only to be done under full subordination to them (Lady Yassavi was most direct in this) and of our Caldari allies being much better at communicating objectives and coordinating.

However, such a dominant group as Local is Primary with such a distinguished combat records will have no problem retaining full control of the amarr-minmatar area of operation from the disorganized and ineffective tribal militia. Indeed, where I to look at a map of control right now, I would surely see every one of those systems with a golden imperial logo above, correct?

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I truly regret having to say this, Lord Consort, but do you not realise that, once again, all this amounts to is nothing more than the use of threats of force and aggression to try to coerce LUMEN into meeting your demands with nothing being offered in return?

Though you now claim them to be mortal enemies, Local Is Primary did nothing to fight Electus Matari at Thebeka when LUMEN stood against them. That was okay, of course. We understand that Local is Primary has its own theatre within which to fight.

Local is Primary did nothing to fight Ushra’Khan when they deployed outside of the warzone to destroy LUMEN’s infrastructure in the Mandate. That was also okay, of course. We understand that Local is Primary has its own theatre within which to fight.

Local is Primary did, however, fly alongside Dock Workers, where the benefits of such cooperation were understood to be sufficiently acceptable for Local is Primary, despite the fact that Dock Workers have been constant adversaries of LUMEN for many years, inflicting many damages against us. This is despite the fact that, as you yourself note quite accurately, an entity acting alongside an enemy of an ally ‘will have at least indirectly contributed to a much more difficult fight for [the ally]’.

And you know what? That was okay too. We understand that Local is Primary has its own theatre within which to fight.

In every event, we have understood that Local is Primary has its own theatre within which to fight, often governed by different dynamics to ours. We understood this when it flew to defend a Minmatar-aligned structure only months after Ushra’Khan had come to destroy ours. Not only did we understand, one of our pilots contributed to the initiative and lost their own Apostle for the trouble. They contributed again another time when you flew alongside Dock Workers.

You will again note how it is acknowledged that the Amarr Militia has the respect afforded to it to fight its own fights in pursuit of its own interests in the CEMWPA war theatre even where such actions act to our own detriment.

But LUMEN flies alongside Electus Matari, an entity Local is Primary didn’t even care to fight during Thebeka, in opposition to one of Amarr’s greatest current enemies; or flies alongside PNS, the people that actually did take the effort to come and defend our Mandate infrastructure against Ushra’Khan, and suddenly you cannot afford the same respect back because it is inconvenient for you in your theatre.

No, all you can do is make more demands and say that LUMEN once more must return to the negotiating table with people that have only ever, at best, been apathetic towards it, or at worse actively belittled it, at which point you will then be gracious enough to ask your commander to cease the unilateral hostilities and aggressions that you started against us in the first place. In other words, LUMEN must at all times capitulate to the demands of Local is Primary as though it were subservient to it and as though its conflicts were more important, rather than an entity seen as an ally deserving mutual respect fighting an equally as important battle of its own.

Is it sinking in yet, Lord Consort? All take and no give?

I still deeply respect and admire you as a stalwart soldier of the 24th Imperial Crusade, Lord Consort, I truly do. But your treatment of other faithful fighting in other theatres in service of Amarr, people you nominally consider to be allies but in practice see as subordinates to be ordered around at your whim for your convenience only, it is nothing but destructive.

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Hate to say it, but this is correct. As someone who bled for a year over Flos right beside you, it pains me to see demands in bad faith. “Do as I say, not as I do” is what we get from LiP, and demands to follow that line from House Newelle in exchange for, what? Pleasant words of attempting some diplomacy to cool the rhetoric you’ve so happily contributed to, and done little to abate so far? Promises of vague leverage over an individual all too ready to throw you, personally Aldrith, under the bus at the first hint of insubordination over recovered Minmatar fighters?

Give me a break. I’m tired of a knife being stabbed into our back, and so soon, after going to bat for you so hard, and all the goodwill in the cluster we could give for hopes of your future success.

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All I hear are the mewling lies of a heretic, an apostate, and a traitor. You have strayed from the path of justice, and ye shall be cast into the fie’ry pit with your Matari friends. Whose structures we are currently purging with laser and fire.

For the record I cannot and do not speak for the Chapter with regards to diplomacy, so if leadership thinks a meeting is worthwhile then that is entirely acceptable. I just hope to speak as a, seemingly former, friend to a friend about my personal frustrations. What a tragedy this all is.

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This is a thoughtful rejoinder and a welcome reprieve from the quality of perspectives presented in this thread so far. I was beginning to think that some molecules of the speck might have somehow made their way from the Kyonoke Pit into icecream stores in one of LUMEN’s shared hangars. I hear the effects on cognition can be quite severe.

Quite so. As we are members of the Amarr Militia, you no doubt understand that we must often terminate pirates with higher security status that interfere with our business. The consequence is that operating in highsec is problematic for our pilots due to their low security status, and this is to say nothing of our issues with Minmatar and Gallente patrols. You do not expect aid from CTRLV in every engagement, just as we do not expect your assistance in all of ours.

Dock Workers are cunning local pirates, but they are also a weapon to be used against greater foes. Like LUMEN, we have also turned our guns on Dock Workers when their objectives do not overlap with ours, and they most often do not. As far as the charge of CTRLV abetting your “constant adversar[y] for many years”… CTRLV has been fighting Dock workers, or their progenitor, DHSJ, since a time before your alliance was formed. I assure you, they’re a much bigger pain in my side than they are in yours. They always have been.

You speak truly. CTRLV did indeed, contrary to the council of both Lord Newelle and Lady Yassavi, assist in the defense of this Minmatar aligned bastion against an invading pirate entity. This was a grievous error: an error that you’re repeating in front of my eyes.

Yes, that’s correct. You have neither our respect nor our understanding in your ongoing collaboration with Electus Matari. The reasons for this are straightforward. Collaborating with pirates (whether they be dock workers or PNS) is not the same as collaborating with self-proclaimed enemies of the throne such as UK or EM. While honor is rare among pirates, it is absent by definition in the Minmatar soul. Tis true, CTRLV collaborated with UK against invading pirates. This was a colossal mistake, and one for which I was solely responsible. It is better to face down an enemy Titan in a half fitted punisher than to go into battle with the matari at your back. The word of the matari is as sturdy as their vessels, and they reneged on our agreement almost immediately, shoving a knife in my back. The betrayal of LUMEN by EM is not a matter of “if”. It is a matter of “when”.

The Empire sanctioned cooperation between capsuleers loyal to different factions (even those at war with the Empire) in the Triglavian invasion. The invasion has concluded. Your collusion with the enemy has not. So, when you gesticulate wildly towards my past errors with one hand while repeating them with the other, understand this: I take no pleasure in dispensing this scorn, but I will not sit idly by while this transpires. Your infatuation with EM bears a heavy toll. It has cost you the the support of CTRLV, the Yassavi family, and the Amarr Militia at large. I do not wish to escalate this further. However, If I must bathe your vessels in conflagration to help illuminate the truth to you, then rest assured, no crystal will be spared.

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One of the difficulties in negotiating with you, Commander Vektor, and indeed with the Lord Consort, is that you repeat the same points no matter how many times satisfactory answers or counterpoints have been previously raised, either by LUMEN or by third parties. For example:

And

And

With that said, I feel the need to add one more quote:

I believe we can draw this conversation to a definitive conclusion, Commander. There is far more than enough information here for anybody third-party to this dispute to make up their minds about the parties involved, what drives them, and who, if any, they support. All we have left to give now is diplomacy theatre for diplomacy theatre’s sake.

I will say, in concluding, that though you seem unmovingly set on this destructive course, I do still maintain hope that you will re-evaluate your ways one day. To see such a capable commander and such stalwart soldiers act as antagonists towards their own brethren has been bitterly painful.

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Satisfactory to whom? I think my threshold to consider them so is a good deal higher than yours.

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Having seen Khimi Harar and its predecessors put in work for the Empire for some time now, I can’t think of a single time any of those have lent their support to begin with. I’m not sure what you think they’ve ‘lost’ here, but from the outside it doesn’t look like anything of value.

Oh now we’re talking. By all means, proceed. Gotta love it when you lot eat each other.

Pffft. Miz, it’s all a bunch of hot air, and we all know it. He’s threatening their ships. Oh Noez. It’s not like he’s swearing to go after their Fortizar.

On this, we agree. Most of the points you reference were thoroughly routed in their original context, for all to see. For example, your Chapter Master’s insinuation that the Triglav invasion still needs to be “sent back to the Abyss”, speaks volumes about his tactical awareness. Does he expect to encounter triangles on the Amarr undock? As I stated quite clearly previously, the Triglav invasion has ceased and they have occupied several Imperial planets. The Minmatar rebellion has also largely ceased, and they occupy hundreds of our planets. You would collude with a thief of jewels to apprehend a thief of cabbage.

I understand that seeing your excuses repeatedly eviscerated must be infuriating to witness. However, repetition is crucial in both education and training. When a pupil commits an error multiple times, repeated and consistent negative feedback can help correct their behavior. I am a man of patience. For as long as you regurgitate these arguments, I will continue meeting them with my heel.

As I have said multiple times previously, I do not subject myself to the chimping of self-described obligate pedants. Thus, I am not exposed to Arrendis posting in this forum. If you are so desperate to reference their posting in defense of your own, my advice would be to find a quiet asteroid on the fringes of known space, park your vessel in its shadow, offline all but your critical systems, and rethink your life choices.

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I believe neither party will change stance at this point.

Electus Matari and Phoenix Naval Systems remain hostile at all times and in all contexts to us. Any who share a fleet with them will be considered accessories.

That is all.

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In fact, that’s just a paraphrasing of EDENCOM’s (as the unified anti-Trig C&C structure of the all four empires including the Amarr) official position on the invasion: that it is not over until the lost worlds are recovered.

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Y-eeees, and so if you are Amarrian, you can definitely place the Triglavian Collective higher on the threat list . . . so long as you:

  1. take the word of the entity with the strongest vested interest in perpetuating that belief;

  2. firmly and completely ignore all reports of said empires engaging in diplomatic discussions with the Collective;

  3. stick your head very deep in the sand about the fact that the Drifters publicly executed our previous Empress; AND

  4. completely disregard the fact that there is ALSO an ongoing declared war against the Drifters right this very minute that you SHOULD be addressing instead.

But by all means, LUMENeers, ignore all of that so that Arsia Elkin’s betrayal of the Empire doesn’t interfere with your ability socialize with her at the next capsuleer soiree.

If you can’t put the Empress’ murder together with the flight of the Triglavian Collective from the Abyss to figure out that the Drifters are the single most dire threat to the cluster, it’s because your overprivileged noble brains are too stupid to do the math.

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So, the Triglavians invade the Empires, carve out some territory, and need us to fight the Drifters now?

Is there anything else the ungrateful Empires can do for you?

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They were set personally blue for the duration of the op.

It was the SOP for fleets with Pandemic Horde during the nullbloc war, with them to be removed immediately after fleet conclusion. It prevented confusion with shooting neutral pilots during joint operations.

I did the same while flying operations in against Kybernauts with Electus Matari and other groups that were otherwise red to LUMEN. Again, removed immediately after. LUMEN command also did not ever direct pilots to do this, to my knowledge. I recall several close calls on both sides due to literally seeing red, as some pilots would warp in before joining fleet.

I chose to avoid this by temporarily changing personal standings.

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