Yesterday was the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising, a failed attempt by the Irish to expel the British from their home island. While the Easter Rising failed, it set in motion the complex set of events that ultimately resulted in the Republic of Ireland, partitioned though it may be.
Yesterday was also the day that Circle of Two, a long-time ally of Goonswarm and member of the Imperium, decided it was done taking orders from The Mittani and Sion Kumitomo. Their list of grievances are complex, difficult to understand completely to outsiders, but legitimate. After the decision was made to evacuate The Bastion (a puppet/feeder alliance for Goonswarm, at least in its initial design) and LAWN out of Vale of the Silent, the Tribute region became the front line for the Casino War – meaning CO2 became the front line for the Casino War. Tinfoil hattery aside, that’s not exactly an enviable position – particularly for an organization that doesn’t really have any beef with the attackers.
As TheJudge stated in his Cap Stable interview, released late yesterday, the decision essentially came down to: do we serve as the wall, or do we get out of the way? They chose to get out of the way as 3000 pilots from all across New Eden showed up in Tribute to fight against the 1300 pilot strong force the Imperium mustered. Most would probably say: wise choice.
Now, the Eve Online meta sphere of bloggers, redditors, tweetfleeters, slackers, etc are all kinds of riled up. There is a bunch of hype about how the Imperium is doomed, how the Imperium’s destruction is nigh and inevitable and unavoidable. And yes, it’s true – Fade, Vale of the Silent, and now Tribute are all in flames. In his fireside chat, The Mittani made it clear that more will burn before the war is over, with Tenal expected to go at the very least. Right now, the Imperium is banking on the laziness of their opponents.
After the Easter Rising in Ireland, the vast majority of Irish rebels were imprisoned by the British. The leaders were shot. The movement, it could fairly be thought by the British at the time, was thoroughly crushed. But, by underestimating their opponents, the British allowed them to gather momentum. In prison, the rebels remained in close contact. As the lower ranks began to be freed, plans were implemented to break the rest out. Elections were contested, the army of occupation in Ireland was targeted, and before you knew it, a man named Michael Collins was negotiating for the creation of the Irish Free State.
By allowing their opponents to dictate the pace of the war, the Imperium risks making a similar mistake. While they shout ‘Miracle of Dunkirk!’ to the heavens, and bank on sov grind to dissuade their attackers, they do nothing for their own cause. Sure, they’ve weaponized boredom in the past, but what happens when enough people (defeated in the past by Goons and bearing grudges) get enough motivation to just grind shit out? After all, they’ve just got to win this war, and then they can consider the score settled, the Imperium destroyed, and go back home. The Imperium, on the other hand, needs to win every war to stay alive.
Interesting times. It’s not over, by any stretch of the imagination, but after months of AMAs, defections, and failures (both in their media organization and in their spaceship organization), at some point you have to think that they really might lose.
P.S. It’s March 29th, which I guess means that the revamped Fountain War book kickstarter is due within the next 48 hours, eh?