Thebeka - The situation in space.
December 26th YC 120
Thebeka has recently become a hotbed of violence as conflict engulfs the surface of Thebeka III, and capsuleer forces of both Amarrian and Matari allegiance engage in skirmishes, assaults and Galnet flame wars.
The Raata Zaibatsu’s only involvement in Thebeka is to handle the inspection of two freeports owned by a questionable third party that advertises the freeports as being used purely for humanitarian purposes. New developments in this area will be reported on at a later date as new complications are now emerging.
Along with the detachment sent out to conduct the inspection were several ZANIE reporters in the event of there being anything else relevant to report on. Here at ZANIE we have begun to take an interest in the multitude of events that have unfolded in space between Capsuleers. As a neutral party, ZANIE has decided to tackle the task of fairly covering the actions of all sides as a neutral observer.
Defending Amarrian territory, numerous Capsuleer alliances expressing loyalty to the throne have been operating in Thebeka, such as Khimi Harar, Praetoria Imperialis Excubitoris, and the more recent - and now infamous for attempting to recruit Capsuleers loyal to Sansha’s nation to fuel their war efforts in Thebeka - Aegis Militia. Coming to the aid of rebellion are a mix of individuals along with the Electus Matari, who’ve only recently stepped up operations in the system, as well as smaller organizations such as Kyn’aldrnari and Cail Avetatu who despite being small in size have experienced combat pilots. Neutral parties have also emerged in the middle of the ongoing tension to offer humanitarian aid to civilians, Imperial troops and rebel forces.
The above mentioned organizations - with the exception of PIE - have in one way or another planted their flag in the system in the form of mobile depot networks, Upwell consortium citadels, and engineering complexes.
Held by SoE Roughriders, a member corporation of Electus Matari. Freedom’s Gate arrived in Thebeka under the direct supervision of SoE Roughriders CEO Elsebeth Rhiannon. Freedom’s Gate was declared to be a staging facility for humanitarian efforts for its initial service period, however the facility took a drastic shift in focus after a CONCORD sanctioned declaration of war against Electus Matari was paid for by PIE.
This switch from humanitarian to full fledged military outpost was announced openly on the Intergalactic summit along with the news of Electus Matari stepping up activity in Thebeka and taking the fight to the Amarrians. All civilian staff previously stationed on Freedom’s Gate have have been evacuated and moved to another civilian base outside of Thebeka.
ZANIE reporters managed to get in contact with Elsebeth Rhiannon to learn more about this choice. According to her, despite the full willingness to flip the switch on Freedom’s Gate, she would’ve been perfectly fine with it operating at a civilian level and providing only humanitarian support. It was however the war declaration by PIE that pushed her hand to turn it into a military installation.
With Electus Matari taking a bigger role in Thebeka and using Freedom’s Gate as a staging post, a new factor emerges that shakes up the playing field for Amarrian forces. When asked “What tides of change Electus Matari is bringing to the Thebeka situation?”, she responded with this:
"I cannot unfortunately answer questions in a way that will reveal operational information. However it will be the locals on the planet [who] will win or lose this in the end. We have some recorded kills out that should give you an idea of what we have fielded so far.”
- Elsebeth Rhiannon
Choosing to let actions speak for Electus Matari, ZANIE can say from looking at battle reports coming out of Thebeka that Electus Matari aren’t settling for a few frigates and destroyers, but fielding entire battleship fleets to engage in skirmishes with Praetoria Imperialis Excubitoris, Societas Imperialis Sceptri Coronaeque and Aegis Militia.
SII Humanitarian Center
The SII Humanitarian Center is owned by Sorn Interstellar Industries. As the name implies, the structure is also here to supply humanitarian services to non-combatants. The center’s focus is entirely aimed at the civilians, with specialists being sent down to war-torn areas for search and rescue operations to pull and evacuate civilians caught up in the ongoing crossfire down on Thebeka III. Along with this the service is being extended to any former slaves being harboured by rebel forces, if possible, however the bulk of people aided by SII are overwhelmingly made up of the civilian population.
ZANIE managed to reach out to the co-founder of Sorn Interstellar Industries, Maria Blackfire, to learn about why exactly she’s gotten involved. When asked what her exact motives are, she had this to say:
“Sorn interstellar industries will not stand by while innocents suffer be it Amarrians or Minmatar. SII knows how to how it feels to be on the lower end of the spectrum, we have always looked after small people.
And after Kahah the Khanids have been in a bad light so I feel the need to show that not all of us are bad.”
- Maria Blackfire
The bad light on the Khanids Maria is referencing comes from a rather infamous handling of a slave revolt by the Khanid Kingdom on the world of Kahah III, which brings us to the next item in this list.
Ammatar Independence Movement
Formerly called the Ammatar Mandate Observation Post - This engineering complex is held by a rather mysterious group calling themselves “The Ghosts of Kahah” and are led by a Capsuleer of Ammatar origins named Armast Darkar. It is revealed to the reporter that made contact with Armast that the Ghosts of Kahah are a cell of survivors from the failed invasion of Kahah III where Armast Darkar himself helped coordinate a fleet with Ushra’khan forces. This fleet met considerable resistance from a defensive Amarrian fleet but managed to hold the field;it failed however, by losing the primary objective, a providence-class freighter piloted by Armast Darkar which was destroyed with all invasion assets in tow.
Survivors of this battle, sympathizers that condemn the violent actions taken on Kahah III, and Ammatar seeking independence have enlisted into this cell to make a difference. Armast Drakar has established himself as a voice of independence for the Ammatar, but has had his political efforts crippled by being officially flagged as a heretic by the Amarr Empire. News of this was delivered by the grandmaster of The Order of St. Tetrimon, Khemon Dulsur an-Tetrimon, who appeared in the Thebeka system in an Apostle-class carrier on December 19th and said this directly to Armast in the local FTL channel:
“Let us be clear, Darkar, you are attained as a heretic and are no longer Ammatar in the eyes of God, Empress or any other would be loyal.”
- Khemon Dulsur an-Tetrimon
[From logs compiled by Arradina Varren]
The station anchored by the Ghosts has been a target for Amarrian Capsuleers. Despite there being no officially declared motive for the complex, PIE have already declared a CONCORD sanctioned war on the Ghosts of Kahah and have besieged the complex repeatedly to its final timer with logistical assistance from Khimi Harar. Its final vulnerability phase on the 25th however would see no assault but instead the arrival of a fleet of tornados waving the banner of the Goonswarm Federation. Typically when pilots of Goonswarm are seen flying tornados in high-security space- there’s little for the imagination to think about.
However, ZANIE reached out to the pilot Arrendis, a member of Goonswarm who has been frequenting Thebeka and any discussions related to the ongoing crisis. Details of their involvement became much clearer and came off as vaguely honorable even. When asked “Why did Goonswarm get involved?” - Arrendis had this to say:
“First, it’s important to stress that Goonswarm didn’t. RepSwarm, an Imperium Special Interest Group, got involved because experienced combat alliances were using so-called neutral logi to beat on a 2-man mining corp that made the mistake of taking a political stand without knowing just how unprepared they were to defend it. ‘Neutral’ logi is nothing of the sort. It’s a way to avoid really committing to a war, and evade any reprisals from your targets.”
“We came to Thebeka to provide a deterrent against that sort of unethical behavior. We’re glad that Khimi Harar have opted to make their stance official and allow for their enemies to hit back. We’re also glad that both Khimi Harar and PIE have apparently decided to spare the structure and maybe even allow it to unanchor peacefully. RepSwarm’s job is to preserve life, and that’s what we hope to have achieved here.”
- Arrendis Culome - SIG lead of RepSwarm
Curious to find out more about the intended use of this structure and the Ghosts’ motives to be out here, the reporter talking to Amast asked what exactly was going on - Armast had this to say:
“The Ghosts of Kahah intended to only support the rebels on the surface after consultation with Samira Kernher, who possesses knowledge specific to the fighting inside of the Holding under the administration of Lord Khalil Numayr. PIE’s declaration of war and escalation of hostilities in space prevented even a preliminary meeting from taking place.”
- Armast Darkar
Mojemi Jaira Astrahus Is owned by Cail Avetatu, which ZANIE is led to believe is a offshoot sect of the Amarr Faith. Spearheading this sect is the Capsuleer Samira Kernher who is in Thebeka in support of the rebel forces.
Mojemi Jaira is a humanitarian outpost that is also providing limited military support to rebel forces planetside. Along with this is the consideration for the health and wellbeing of any Amarrian POWs in rebel hands. Samira Kerhner appears to have sympathy for both the Amarr forces and rebels fighting for their freedom. But upon further investigation it appears this matter is more personnel. A ZANIE reporter managed to get in contact with Samira and learn more about her motives when asking her what her mission here is.
This was her response:
“My facilities are mainly providing humanitarian support to any non-combatants and anyone wounded in the fighting, where we can. It’s also true that we’re helping the rebels. While this is my homeworld and I hate seeing violence here, it is proof of how much reformation needs to happen. Corruption and sin festers at the top levels of Amarr, for we gave them great power and freedom under the false hope that they had proven themselves responsible of it. Instead, they ignore and cover up their own abuses, even pardoning King Khanid, while they punish the lower classes and slaves on a whim or for crimes committed by people who died thousands of years ago. The enemies of the inside must be controlled. These enemies are not the people, as the upper classes have claimed, but themselves and their own unchecked sins."
- Samira Kerhner
The citadel has been attacked by PIE forces, making this another structure assaulted by the Amarrians. In the case of this structure however, not even the shields were penetrated and the CONCORD sanctioned war between PIE and Cail Avetatu was briefly dropped before being oddly activated again by Samira Kernher herself.
Pictured supplied by Aradina Varren
Anchored by the Aegis Militia, the Aegis 1 saw a rather quick demise compared to above mentioned structures. So quick, that it was in fact during the brief period of vulnerability between its anchoring and anchored phase that it was destroyed by pilots of Electus Matari and their friends. Given how the structure was in a high-security system, you’d wonder how anyone was able to legally attack the structure so quickly. It appears this was the result of Aegis Militia submitting a war declaration shortly after beginning the anchoring process. The war would begin and pilots of Aegis Militia and Electus Matari would be allowed to freely engage one another just after this one vulnerability window began.
Electus Matari wholeheartedly made the best out of this opportunity, and succeeded in destroying the Astrahus with a mixed Typhoon and Guardian fleet, versus Aegis Militia’s mostly long range Raven fleet.
Aegis Militia however entered Thebeka looking to aid the Amarr Empire, so the next question is; where was Aegis 1’s backup from pilots of other Amarr loyal organizations like PIE or Khimi Harar? Well the answer to that resides in a pile of controversy Aegis Militia made for themselves, after the “Khanid Hedge Knight” and Capsuleer Kithrus attempted to recruit a pilot with sympathetic viewpoints to Sansha’s Nation. The pilot in question is Evi Polevhia, a capsuleer belonging to the Phoenix Naval Systems (PNS) alliance, and formerly a committed member of the infamous True Slave Foundation, a corporation of Capsuleers loyal to Sansha Kuvakei’s twisted vision.
Kithrus’ pitch was leaked by Evi herself on the Intergalactic Summit (IGS). Capsuleers were either shocked, disgusted, or more often completely unsurprised at the lows Aegis Militia went to to bolster their roster ahead of deploying to Thebeka. Not helping their case is the rather dark justification Kithrus provides in his pitch for why Aegis would be recruiting Sansha sympathizers into their organization:
“Let me put it this way, if you experiment on our enemies I don’t give a damn. We may have a few, even PIE. Depends how they react to the roster. I want results, you provide them I don’t care how morality be damned.”
The actions taken here by Aegis Militia has effectively alienated themselves from the bloc of Amarrian allies. PIE forces didn’t not interfere when the citadel was besieged. Truly the Aegis Militia has had a rocky start trying to settle in Thebeka, and their current status is unknown.
Praetoria Imperialis Excubitoris
Better known simply as PIE, the Praetoria Imperialis Excubitoris has played a significant role in Thebeka by being the most well organized and militarily prepared group of Capsuleers coming to the aid of the Amarr Empire. As one can tell from reading about previous structures, PIE has been no stranger to going on the offensive and besieging assets of the various rebel supporters in Thebeka.
However what appears to be overt and blind zealous aggression is actually a series of reasonably tactical choices given the sensitivity of the situation in Thebeka. ZANIE has managed to get in contact with PIE Lord Admiral Gaven Lok’ri for more information. PIE’s involvement here is no mystery given the fevered devotion PIE has had to the Empire since its founding; they’re here purely to look out for the Empire above all and are not taking any risks with protecting her. The decisions to attack and declare war on Cail Avetatu, SOE Roughriders, and The Ghosts of Kahah were made due to key figures involved with each group having earned a KOS status from PIE well before the events of Thebeka. Amast Darkar aided Ushra’Khan forces in a invasion of Kahah III, Elsebeth Rhiannon has a good track record of expressing anti-amarr sentiments along with being present at the attempted invasion of Kahah III, and Samira Kernher collaborated with Capsuleer Mizhara Del’thul to perform a terrorist attack on the assets of Alar Chakaid on Zirsem V. When asked point blank if PIE’s policy was shooting first and asking question later - the Lord Admiral said this:
“We aren’t operating on a shoot first and ask questions later policy. We are operating on a policy in which we assume that those who have earned a kill on sight due to actions against the Amarr Empire are continuing to work against the Amarr Empire. Past militant action against Holy Amarr speaks far louder than their words ever could.”
- Gaven Lok’ri
This quote more or less settles how PIE Is operating in Thebeka. Those that have previously become a threat to the Amarr Empire are being treated and seen as a threat to the Amarr Empire. New motives are a moot point when it comes one’s KOS status.
On team Amarr, made up of the Societas Imperialis Sceptri Coronaeque and Sha’ha’dem Explorers is the recently formed alliance called Khimi Harar. Spearheading the alliance is SFRIM Directrix Lunarisse Aspenstar, who’s perspective ZANIE was able to get some insight into. Khimi Harar has been another contributing force in providing relief to Imperial-loyal citizens, however instead of basing humanitarian work out of a citadel like other groups, SFRIM has set up small networks of mobile depots in orbit of Thebeka III. These mobile depots serve as storage for supplies and personnel, staging platforms, and command centers. From theses platforms, Khimi Harar coordinates efforts planetside., oOver a thousand logistical and medical specialists with an armed security detail ofin equal sized are present on Thebeka III. In space toohowever, Khimi Harar are putting in their fair share of support on the field by providing PIE with logistical support. However this only came after Armast Drakar and friends destroyed an Omen piloted by the Directrix, and began attacking and reinforcing their staging depots and citing that “CONCORD allowed it”. and tThus the Directrix informed her own pilots that they may do whatever CONCORD allows.
This brings us to a slice of controversy, with Khimi Harar being seen aiding PIE fleets with logistical vessels not flagged as legal targets to the Ghosts of Kahah, induring an official CONCORD war, between PIE and The Ghosts of Kahah. When asked about this and cross checking with Lord Admiral Gaven Lok’ri, SFRIM forces did in fact supply neutral logistics to PIE forces in an assault on on the Ammatar Independence Movement citadel. Both alliances then relocated to the system of Dresi to defend a PIE citadel previously reinforced by The Ghosts of Kahah and Mordor Industries Inc, who are reported to have brought their own neutral logistics in the form of three Nestors.
When asked directly for a mission statement, the Directrix responded with this:;
“Given the situation in Thebeka, and the call by the Empire for loyal capsuleers to assist, we deployed to do so."
- Lunarisse Aspenstar
Mordor Industries inc.
A strange third party appeared in Thebeka and provided additional firepower to support The Ghosts of Kahah. Mordor Industries had a brief episode in Thebeka where they acted as the Ghosts of Kahah’s closet allies in the field. One would assume Mordor has some pre-existing relationship with Armast Darkar for them to been seen working together, but upon further investigation it appears Mordor Industries had no prior association with any party involved in Thebeka.
Managing to get in contact with the CEO Terra Stellari, ZANIE learned that Mordor’s involvement comes in the form of a word from a business partner that has been in contact with Armast. This middleman in the equation has remained classified, but Terra is open about her groups motives in Thebeka. No money swapped hands and Mordor Industries had no allegiance to either side and primarily got involved to make a difference. When asked what her corporation were planning by stepping into Thebeka, she had this to say
"I felt it would be an interesting engagement as well as provide a good learning opportunity for myself and my corpmates. It also felt nice to help a smaller group fight off a much larger one."
- Terra Stellarii
According to Armast Darkar himself, Mordor’s involvement had been essential in some of the earlier engagements but has since pulled out of Thebeka. Gaven Lok’ri also commented that while the combined forces of Ghosts/Mordor were “less than coordinated” they had remarkable aggression when engaging members of PIE and Khimi Harar. Despite pulling out, Terra revealed that assets are still stored in system in case they decide to resume operations there.
By now ZANIE believes all things of note have been reported on. Should any new developments occur, ZANIE will be there to report on them.