A Potato Conspiracy?
Dateline 3212.311 Asteel Q0
Senators of the Reform Party have been making considerable political capital in the Senate on Asteel with speeches about the ‘undemocratic and corrupt Potato regime’. Using material researched by the think tank the Democratic Ethical Society, which seems to suggest that the President Potato is at the centre of a conspiracy to subvert the GFA apolitical system. Defenders of the president point out that the ‘research’ is at best circumstantial, and no more rigorous than many other ‘conspiracy theorists’. A spokesperson from the Hexagon said “…its about as likely that Alphie Potato is a 12-foot shape-changing lizardman…no…that’s a joke…”
Earth’s Great Pyramid of Giza “Only a Model”
Dateline Mystery Q0 3212.300
Following initial research on the newly discovered world of Mystery, archeologists from the Interstellar Forerunner Foundation have been exploring a vast pyramid buried in the ice at the planet’s pole. From careful study it transpires that this ‘Great Pyramid of Mystery’ has the same proportional dimensions as the Great Pyramid of Giza on Earth.
A spokesperson for the IFF said “Of course, pyramids abound in early history on Earth, and this is unsurprising – a pyramid is the soundest way of constructing a large structure for religious or monumental reasons. There was even a small forerunner pyramidal structure discovered buried in the sand on Mars – however, what is unusual about this is that not only is it constructed in exactly the same proportions externally, it has the same internal structure as well. This is, frankly, astonishing”
According to the teams exploring the site on Mystery, the internal arrangement of chambers is exactly mirrored in the Giza pyramid – though for centuries archeologists have ascribed these chambers to the religious and funeral practices of the ancient Egyptians. However, there have been some remaining puzzles – chambers with uncertain purposes etc.
The Mystery Pyramid is approximately 3 times the size of Giza, and is, of course, constructed of materials more common to the Forerunners rather than dressed stone with a rubble in-fill. Of course theories abound as why such a startling connection should arise. On Earth the excitement is palpable, and the vast crowds gathering at Giza are causing considerable problems to the largely farming areas surrounding the ancient site. A local farmer said “We do get some tourists through here, and we welcome visitors, but this is ridiculous – my soya fields are getting trampled every day – the regional council should compensate us”.
The Earth Government has reinforced local police, and there are reports of GF troops and Elite Starship Marines being deployed “as a reserve in case of trouble…”.
Blue Hats Claim ‘Self Defence’
Dateline T301 Quadrant 1 3212.290
The Independence First Alliance on T301 has been describing the recent border fighting against the Blue Hat colony as ‘untrammelled aggression’. The IFA, a defensive military alliance of smaller colonies, has spent much of the last 20 days or so fighting what they call an ‘illegal incursion’ into their territory through the contested Sigil Hills region.
The Blue Hat Colony cite continued provocation and border incursions from the IFA as the reason for their move into the region. The Blue Hat regional commander, Marshall Kutuoff said “Our settlements near the border have suffered continual IFA-inspired terrorist acts, and they fire mortars and rockets over the border on a daily basis. We have been forced to move into the Sigil hills to remove the threat to our settlements – this is purely an act of self defence”.
It is no coincidence, however, that the Sigil Hills were recently surveyed and found to have potentially highly valuable deposits of Rare Earths.
The IFA’s High Commander, General Davaa, said in a statement “We will resist Blue Hat aggression. Our forces are ready, and well equipped, and we will win. This is not the end of the matter – the enemy will come to regret their actions.”
New Phobos Colony on the Edge
Dateline New Phobos Q4 3212.260
A giant planetquake severely damaged the main towns of the newly-settled New Phobos colony.
Over 1024 people are believed to have lost their lives in this natural disaster, and much of the main settlement of New Stickney was severly damaged – mainly by fires. The colony’s main fusion generators had to be placed into ‘safe mode’ and cease generating, putting the main settlements at further risk.
Local colonial authorities are desperate – a major natural disaster at such an early stage in a colony’s development means that this is highly likely to make the colony unsustainable in the short term – and may even cause it to be abandoned altogether.
At the last report, there were serious health concerns as power to the colonies single hospital is intermittent. The major infrastructure damage has also interrupted food supplies from the ranches and farms in the interior of the continent.
Most serious of all is the likely impact on red mercury exports – the economic life blood of any early colony.
Face-off at Mystery?
Dateline Mystery Q0 3212.288
Unconfirmed reports have come in of a military face-off in low orbit over the newly-discovered world of Mystery. Officials are extremely tight-lipped about exactly what happened – but we have been able to discover that shots were fired and Sirian and Martian Pacifiers were shot down. Neither the Martians nor the Sirians are, at time of going to press, happy to say much more about this. The best we have been able to get is “a technical failure in some key systems” from the SSR Navy.
It has been long known that the Martians, whilst signatories to the IFF Treaty, have their reservations about the work of the Foundation. The rumour mill is working overtime – some reports suggest that the Martians believe the IFF was attempting to deliberately hide some major piece of Forerunner technology – though what exactly is unclear (time machine, matter transmitter, AI – who knows?). Other theories suggest that the Sirians deliberately provoked the Martians with the aim of discrediting them (though why is not clear). Others suggest the confrontation was as a result of ‘alien mind control’.
Wacky theories aside – there is clearly some tension within the ranks of the signatories of the IFF Treaty, and the forthcoming IFF Coordinating Committee Meeting is likely to be stormy to say the least.
The Director of the IFF, Professor Stone said “We have been resolving the integration of ongoing security arrangements regarding the academic quarantine at Mystery, and a working protocol has been established after a brief shakedown period where lines of responsibility have been re-affirmed in the light of the development programme, going forward from here”.
Third Force Planning Referendum
Dateline 911RPU Quadrant 6 3212.290
The Third Force Party, which won a narrow victory in recent local elections has been causing something of stir within the Federation in Q6 by arguing strongly for a referendum on secession.
Whilst it is part of the constitution that membership of the GFA can be ended by mutual agreement, following consultation and a referendum, the GFA Colonial Office on 911RPU have been arguing that the TFP has no mandate to unilaterally declare independence. Further, the GFA have been hinting at electoral irregularities in the recent election, and expresses, privately at least, concerns that any referendum organised by the Third Force Party would not be a sound reflection of the views of the majority of colonists – there have been accusations of intimidation.
Meanwhile, there has been an escalation of acts of violence against GFA citizens, and the main colonial offices have had windows smashed. At least one GFA official had her ground vehicle set on fire.
There are also regular anti-GFA protests in the capital, Arpeeyou City. Observers indicate that these are inspired and encouraged by the TFP. Local police seem unable to maintain control, and some suspect many police sympathise with the views of the TFP.
Colonial Referenda and Memberships – from our colonial correspondent
The following colonial worlds are planning referenda: Misstur Q6,
Referenda have been held on the following worlds:
Result – voted to apply to join:
AH022 Sector AH, T105 Venerian Republic
Z162 Q8 T106 Centauri Conglomerate