Order Restored in Spring City
Dateline 3205.040 Lakshmi Q8
Organised crime and lawless gangs had been terrorising the main city of Lakshmi III for some time. With the help of offworld security advisors, the colonial government launched a major operation to restore law and order in Spring City, codenamed ‘Operation Fumingate’ it aimed to remove the armed elements of criminal gangs. In a four day battle, over 2,000 gangsters were killed and many more arrested. Major anti-corruption trials are being held and entirely new police and local government structures put in place. The Chair of the Colonial Council said “…we feelt his is the start of a New Deal for Lakshmi – things can only get better from now on…”
Thousands face starvation on Grynd Q7
The world of Grynd in Q7 is facing a bleak future after a rapidly spreading crop blight devastated this year’s harvest. Ecologists have blamed the colony’s rapid growth, leading to opening up of new areas of rainforest where indigenous flora have been able to cross-pollinate with imported cereal strains. Bill Beardy of ‘Friends of Grynd’ described it as “a
disaster waiting to happen.”
Recriminations aside, however, with the food harvest projected to be only 50% of its normal level, the colonists now urgently require food from offworld if tens of thousands are not to starve.
Division of spoils on P34 Q5
Growing resentment on the world of P34 about how the profits from the small but fast-growing economy are divided has broken out into outright conflict.
Supporters of the P34 Agrarian People’s Party claim that a privileged elite in the capital has enriched
itself at the expense of poor farmers in the countryside. Attempts by the colony leadership to crack down on dissent has merely fanned the flames of discontent, and now a simmering guerrilla movement has developed into a fully-fledged Agrarian People’s Militia organising in remote areas. The government
seems to have effectively lost control of large sectors of the planet, but insists that the situation is “under control” and that “troublesome elements” in the populace will be swiftly rooted out. In the meantime, they say that the economic climate in the
capital remains unaffected, and urge outside companies not to reconsider any investment decisions. “P34 is a victim of its own success!” joked colony chief executive Pluto Kratt.
Give us back our nukes! Double Q4
A dispute over troop level reductions looks set to reach Martian federal government after the Quadrant Four Association Court referred the case to the Martian Supreme Court. The MAFC colony of Doughbug has protested over the downgrading of its local Ground Force Division to a Planetary Guard Division, with the loss of many large equipment items, including orbital satellites and ICBMs. The Harness government restructured Mars’ ground forces following the 3202 Defence Review in order to free up cash for a more space-based defence posture. Although federal troops remain under the control of the Martian Star Navy, and therefore Doughbug technically has no say in how they are deployed, the colonial government is claiming that the federal government is failing in its responsibility to provide adequate military protection
to the colony.
“It’s crazy,” commented colony Primus Elzbieta Rabiata, “the government can afford to pay 24 SV this year for a new colony RapidTrans system, but they can’t afford to pay 1 SV to keep our Ground Force Division operational! Where’s the logic in that?”
If the case goes against Doughbug in the Supreme Court, the colony can make a final appeal to the MAFC Senate.
Politics in the Blenda Q6
There has been considerable political turmoil on Blenda as the local planetary Government has been forced to resign in the light of the very poor economic situation. The opposition parties are highly fragmented on Blenda, and it is expected that the situation will remain unclear for several octants at least. In the meantime, a caretaker coalition government has been formed under the leadership of Professor Arnim Zola, leader of the hitherto small and unregarded Social Regrowth Party. The Imperial Planetary Governor on Blenda has offered help from Earther political consultants to assist with organising the local elections at the earliest opportunity – but so far this has not been taken up.
Marines guarding the Martian Senate can continue addressing politicians and visitors as “mate”, after a ban on the term was reversed.
After a complaint from a civil servant about informality, guards were told to address everyone as “sir” or “madam”. But Senator ‘Toinette Banderas (CGP, Q5), herself no stranger to informality, said that barring the classic Martian appellation was “absurd and ridiculous”. With many of her mates on New Mars also up in arms, the official edict was overturned
within 24 hours.
The banning notice was issued by the Senate Internal Affairs Department after the head of a government ministry complained about being called “mate”. But within hours Senator Banderas was leading the calls for “mate” to be reinstated in Crater City. She admitted that “there are circumstances where a more formal address is appropriate”. But, she went on, “for civil servants to get so badly up themselves as to object to being called ‘mate’ by people they see every day is just the height of pomposity”.