Deklein - On the morning of the 22 nd August, Imperial Republic of the North (IRON) lost 1 titan to Band of Brothers (BoB) alliance forces. The Avatar class vessel, piloted by Capsuleer Lord2evil , was ambushed as it came into action to defend a cynosural jammer, according to the attackers reports.
TheArchJudge , Public Relations representative of Finfleet and witness to the event, gave BoB's version of events: "SirMolle had something special planned for us. Having scanned the safe-spot the night before, he ordered our fleet to jump to VFK-IV and set up on the cyno jammer.
He gambled on the fact that [Lord2Evil] would activate his titan after hearing that we were shooting the cynosural jammer and sent in a few heavy interdictors to camp the spot while battleships worked on the jammer and the rest of support camped the station."
However, things did not all go accordingly to the plans of the attackers, as a Razor Alliance (RAZOR) Erebus made it's way onto the scene instead: "At about 50% armor on the cynojammer, a titan [came] in at the POS, but it was an Erebus, piloted by Intensity Green of RAZOR, as we went back to incapacitating, he starts heading outside the force-field and fires the doomsday, with limited success." Claimed TheArchJudge, adding: "At 20% armour, the gamble finally paid off, when Lord2evil [became active] and was promptly tackled by the ambushing heavy interdictors."
BoB's official press statement goes on to state that the ensuing battle eventually took the IRON Titan down, albeit with losses incurred from a Doomsday device detonation.
Chr1stopher, one of IRON's fleet commanders, had a slightly different version of the story to tell: "Basically a BoB spy had managed to determine the location where the Titan had been [deactivated] so when we [reactivated] it they had interdictors waiting for its arrival" he said, adding: "Most if not all of our allies had to go and deal with Triumvirate [TRI] and as a lot of the higher command of IRON were at an IRON meeting that weekend we didn't have a way of dealing with BoB that night."
In addition to this loss, IRON and its allies lost 3 Motherships in one battle around a POS in 2-KF56 to BoB. At least 1 IRON ship and possibly 2 Morsus Mihi [MM] ships were lost in the battle.
The losses occurred after the ships attempted to warp into the safety of the structure's force field, but were denied access due to a password change and were stranded outside of the field, faced by the opposing fleet. "I was told by fellow fleet commanders in IRON command that they were the result of a BoB spy changing the force field passwords while they warped in causing them to bounce [off], though this information might not be 100% correct. We are not sure if it was a BoB spy or a mistake but it was definitely changed." Said Chr1stopher.
Upon further investigation, espionage seems the most unlikely cause of the accident. One of the Mothership pilots who survived the battle in 2-KF56, TraderJohn, attributed the loss to the spatial anomaly known only to Capsuleers as L.A.G: "[we] spent 25 minutes attempting to jump out, spent another 20 minutes trying to activate hardeners, and spent another 10-15 minutes attempting to activate repairers and boosters," he said, "people could not input the password due to extreme L.A.G."
However, despite this revelation, espionage remains a popular and effective form of warfare in all regions of New Eden. "Subterfuge is not a new occurrence in [null-sec] warfare, while the effect of it is debatable, spies are being used by both (3 if we also count TRI) sides involved" stated TheArchJudge, when asked whether BoB had employed such tactics against IRON.
Despite IRON's losses, they remain confident that BoB's "Max Damage" campaign has had limited success, claiming that although they have lost a Titan class vessel, BoB has been less than successful elsewhere. "On multiple occasions BoB jumped battleship fleets into VFK-IV, CCP-US, JU-OWQ and other IRON systems, and in every one I attended IRON comfortably held the field. Of course we had the home advantage, but bob always have higher numbers, and a massive cap fleet to support [them]", said Chr1stopher, adding: "This is only a small victory for BoB. There is a lot more space up there that this "Max Damage" needs to take effect on. To be perfectly honest with you from what was meant to be a couple of weeks of [combat] to take the north, turned out [to be a] 3-4 month long battle and BoB have got a long way to go yet. People are taking notice that BoB are not as good as some people are led to believe".
TheArchJudge, on the other hand, remained confident that BoB was achieving the objectives of Max Damage. Stating: "I believe SirMolle has already stated that idea behind MAX: "It's totally impossible to claim all of Eve physically. But it's possible to control the people. It's possible to control the alliances, be it by economic means or fighting means or political means. That was the goal and that is the goal.""