Two years ago, TEST was beginning to grow from “one of the CFC” to a power in their own right. They had begun gathering a small collection of alliances under their wings and set them up with parts of Fountain. One of these alliances was named Important Internet Spaceship League, widely known by their ticker BDEAL. By the time they allied with TEST, BDEAL already had some recognition as a small gang warfare alliance. However, after they allied with Test and collected some sov, their numbers began to swell quickly. Some corporations were castoffs from the imploded Northern Coalition, while others were new to null. As numbers increased, internal problems crept up. In late 2011, Luav (BDEAL's alliance leader) needed to take some time off for real life; things went out of control soon after, as various people began making grabs for power.
The turmoil spread quickly and became apparent to the entire alliance in various ways, from arguments on comms to FCs seemingly turning their fleets into swiss cheese on purpose. One FC in particular, Callum Hugman, began to develop the twin habits of giving obviously terrible orders as well as not calling targets as soon as fights began, leading to a lot of dead ships in the ensuing confusion. BDEAL began to crumble due to the dischord, at which point Callum and his corp joined Black Mark. Two corps followed them to FA a week later, and two more trickled in after that.
BDEAL continued on for a few more months, despite enemies flaunting the fact they had spies in command channels and leadership going AWOL. However, the demise of BDEAL was sealed in one event, where an FC called for supers to engage SBUs and subcaps on a gate without proper support. It ended as you can expect:
[ 2012.01.28 18:26:33 ] (notify) Nyx belonging to 0cool101 self-destructs.
[ 2012.01.28 18:31:55 ] (notify) Wyvern belonging to Officer Dangle self-destructs.
[ 2012.01.28 18:37:49 ] (notify) Wyvern belonging to Yoemama self-destructs.
[ 2012.01.28 18:40:19 ] (notify) Nyx belonging to Yubitsume self-destructs.
[ 2012.01.28 18:40:42 ] (notify) Wyvern belonging to Boradokar self-destructs.
TEST was on the other side of the map at that point, engaged in a war in the Northeast alongside PL. A rescue party was formed and raced west to save BDEAL, but were too far to make it before the supers began self destructing. BDEAL collapsed shortly after this event as most of the remaining corporations bailed, with many joining FA. Some corporations declined advances from FA and some were simply not invited. While corporations were leaving, the sizable pile of ISK that had been handed to them by TEST disappeared, a final twist that angered BDEAL's allies.
Montolio confronted Zagdul with intel provided by Nulli Secunda around this time. While Nulli had been amused by the flood of intel provided by some high level members of BDEAL, they were more than happy to share which individuals had handed them the intel and more amused that those individuals were in Fatal Ascension at that point. Montolio accused Fatal Ascension of engineering BDEAL’s fate and then poaching corps to bolster their flagging numbers. The fact that members of FA were logging onto BDEAL’s command channels while the alliance was imploding was damning in Montolio’s eyes.
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - Ageck Kalenia - BDEAL
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - radecz3k (BDEAL)
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - Titris (BDEAL)
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - null
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - Enorio (FA)
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - UDSaxman
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - Montolio
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - TheSaint2000 BDEAL
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - Ori Empress (BDEAL)
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - Cyno Zicke BDEAL
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - null
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - Tearhart (ACE)
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - Pinky Demark BDEAL
xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx - - - Boldt FA
Zagdul denied the claim and tensions escalated into outright war, albeit a short-lived one due to the intervention of Goon diplomats. Resentment has lingered to this day.
Fast forward to now. In the wake of SoCo’s “reduced resistance” in the south and Dotbros reduced battles with CFC in the north, the bloodthirsty among both sides are looking for someone new to shoot. To the chants of “VFK by May” and “Test is Terrible”, eyes in the North and South have turned on each other, despite the best attempts by diplomats. HBC and CFC recently ran through a series of resets, leaving only a few blue standings crossing the two coalitions, such as Goonswarm and TEST. A collection of FA and TEST pilots took it upon themselves to reignite the simmering tensions begun a year previously. Ratters were stalked and killed by former blues, as FCs and diplos argued in shared channels.
The culmination of this saga came in a private convo between Bring Stabity of TEST (diplomat to the CFC) and Goonswarm’s Tector (senior diplomat). Bring laid out a story that TEST was antagonizing FA in hopes that Zagdul would do something rash to break the NIP (non-infrastructure pact), providing TEST justification to move against them. A “most eloquent way to kill FA without starting a CFC war” because “if FA goes away, so does most of the animosity TEST has with the CFC.”
Tector was not pleased with this conversation and shared it with others in CONDI and FA. The Mittani responded by separating the two, removing TEST FCs from the shared CFC command channel.
(11:05:17 PM) firstname.lastname@example.org/ce5ff963: GFAllies Vets: This channel is fucked. Since we created 'cfcops', most of the military chitchat has moved there, and that's worked out great. Sadly, this last week I've been given an unfortunate log involving one of our allies not in the CFC blithely discussing a desire to kill off a loyal and strong CFC alliance, which is not the kind of thing I can allow to go unremarked upon with both parties sharing a diplomatic coordination channel. Since I don't approve of passive-aggressive beating around the bush, I'll be blunt: it was Bring Stabity bragging about TEST baiting FA into a war so that they could kill them under GSF's nose. Walter Stine had the good grace to disavow Bring's nonsense firmly, but in my view this incident has borked a channel that was probably screwed anyway; it's time to start over.
We have a new channel now which all of you have access to (Solo conveniently migrated the gfallies userlist) called 'cfcdiplo'; contacts with the HBC will continue as before through the J5 server. Since cfcops is purely military, and cfcdiplo is purely for schmoozing, there are no restrictions on who you choose to admit to cfcdiplo (except No Mandozers) so you can contact Sion, Tector, Dragkhar, or really any of the corps diplo folks if you'd like to add More Dudes to cfcdiplo from your alliance.
*** This was a broadcast from the_mittani to alliedfc at 2013-01-18 04:05:20.277639 EVE, replies are not monitored ****
Montolio responded by kicking GSF members from TEST jabber and comms. Things began escalating quickly, going so far as to SBUs being moved into position and cyno chains put in place to quickly move respective fleets into place. And then… silence, as all involved returned to the diplomatic table in a last ditch effort to salvage things.
Bring Stabity, TEST Diplomat, explained the situation thus:
Personally, I think there are a lot of issues between the CFC and TEST that have occurred from poor communications and unwillingness to resolve issues in a concrete manner. Both the HBC and the CFC don't want to fight each other in a sov war. No one likes sov war. A lot of TEST's "issues" with the CFC are being hyped up a bit too much, most of the issues are personal slights that have long been forgotten. No one really remembers why TEST and FA hate each other, other than the fact that they both say "They are horrible." I don't think the overreaction leads to a fight. I hope that it leads to both sides actually talking to each other seriously for once. There's been a ton of passive-aggressive posts and reactions from both sides that remind me of middle school girls fighting over who was going to a sock-hop. Maybe some real talk can happen now. I exaggerated vastly, but there was enough behind my words to make people stop and think. Sure, I'd do it again. Because of what I said, both sides started looking at the issue seriously.
Zagdul, leader of FA, explained things this way:
The drama surrounding this whole thing is getting boring. How hard is it for people to just shoot each other without having to sell people a load of bullshit before getting into a fleet and just having fun in EVE. Too many leaders in EVE feel they need to create an enemy out of someone they're not blue with in order to motivate members.
FA doesn't need this propaganda to shoot TEST. I think it's not doing EVE any justice, where I think people would be happy if we'd just all shoot each other and get it over with. As it stands, SOV/Structure warfare sucks. The ability to form a fleet and shoot neutrals is all we need to be motivated to log in, join a fleet and try to enjoy EVE. It could be hostile to us entity in reality. Shooting test in the past was something we considered fun. Now, it's stupid because everyone is just plain bored of the drama.
This changed a little today, however. Test came in with Vee's Caracal fleet and got minced. Fun times. I hope are able to get reshipped and come back for more.
The drama is mostly involving Fatal Ascension whining to Papa Goon because they are mad about TEST killing Fatal Ascension ratters. TEST is an alliance motivated by fun and drama, not by victory or e-honor. If we shoot a ratter and it generates a large amount of tears then that makes it twice as valuable to our group as a whole. If we form a cheap fleet and ram it into an enemy, we may lose, but we will have a good time doing it. Whenever I personally FC, it is always a suicide fleet.
The relationship with the CFC deteriorating is unfortunate, but ties have been weakening steadily over the last few months. The last time we actively worked together and communicated on a personal level was in the Delve/Querious assault - we could only get assistance on strict preconditions and the attempt to negotiate those conditions led to a complete withdrawal and 'taking my ball home' from the CFC. It hasn't really been the same since then. They've purged us from gfallies - we've purged them from jabber. I have started a CFC ~chillbros~ program to allow a select few to retain access. I have pretty decent relationships with some of them and the drama between the coalitions shouldn't impact personal friendships with line members.
The Mittani’s view of the situation:
It'd be pretty easy to stabilize things, but given the behavior of TEST leadership I think it's unlikely to happen. The tldr of this ludicrous drama is a TEST diplo saying "we want to kill off FA, while still being blue to GSF"; this obviously isn't a good environment for a shared diplomatic channel, so we separated HBC from CFC. The reaction from Montolio was a loud announcement thread and removing CFC line members, who have little to do with all of this posturing, from TEST jabber. To wit: "how dare you be offended that we want to kill off one of your allies."
TEST has made it clear that they want to arrange a situation where they can kill off FA under the noses of the CFC by baiting them into some kind of treaty-breaking action. This isn't speculation; it was explicitly stated by the 'Chief Diplomat to the CFC' from the HBC side, Bring Stabity.
(12:06:42 PM) Tector [CONDI]: what is your end goal here?
(12:07:01 PM) Bring Stabity: FA eating themselves from the inside out, or FA deploying to NPC fountain
(12:07:13 PM) Bring Stabity: either or is a victory, because if they try and dive into us we'll chop their head off
(12:07:25 PM) Tector [CONDI]: why do you want that
(12:07:42 PM) Bring Stabity: It's the most eloquent way to kill FA without starting a CFC war
(12:07:51 PM) Bring Stabity: that way montolio gets what he wants, without a CFC war
(12:08:22 PM) Tector [CONDI]: why do you want to kill FA, other than the fact that they didn't respond to Monty's initial trolls?
(12:08:55 PM) Bring Stabity: Because if FA goes away, so does most of the animosity TEST has with the CFC
(12:09:25 PM) Bring Stabity: not all, obviously
(12:09:25 PM) Tector [CONDI]: you are severely misreading the situation.
(12:09:31 PM) Bring Stabity: maybe
(12:09:52 PM) Bring Stabity: I haven't been paying attention to much other than infiltrating FA and guiding the incidents to peaceful resolutions
Note, of course, the obvious problem with a 'chief diplomat to the CFC' explicitly and openly plotting to destroy a CFC alliance, and alleging that he has spies in place to manipulate the situation as well. Given the range of reactions the CFC could have to this, moving the TEST representatives out of the gfallies jabber channel is pretty tame stuff.
It could come to conflict if TEST pulls the trigger. The CFC will not attack the HBC regardless of these rather juvenile provocations from their diplomats. I mean juvenile in a literal sense, rather than a mere ad hominem, given that Bring Stabity is under 21.
I don't have any hopes or agendas on this one: it is a stupid drama and being blown out of proportion for no obvious reason. TEST acts like they want a war with the CFC, but instead of simply resetting us and attacking, we have these strange overreactions in the aftermath of transparent provocations. GSF took the lead in sheltering and helping Dreddit when they joined the Eve community, because Dreddit and Goonfleet are very similar entities, and when Goonfleet joined Eve we were attacked by a veritable galaxy of hypocrisy. I don't know what Montolio hopes to gain by these maneuvers, and so rather than overreacting I'm doing nothing at all.
Lastly, Grath Telkin’s view:
I think this time I'm just gonna stand back and let the youngins play, see where it ends up. One way or another it’s game content.
EDIT: I had originally written Spartan, then changed it to Callum when I was writing about bad FCing, because I had the two mixed up. However, I forgot to change where he went after the edit. Spartan was the not terrible FC and went to FA. Callum was bad and went to Black Mark.