Federation Military Review
The collapse of the Gallente militia in the face of the Caldari Offensive that swept to victory in the first half of the year led to heavy and increasing criticism of the and the FDU. In early July, the Federation Defense Committee was presented with a petition signed by many senators calling for an urgent review of the FDU. Spearheaded by Senator Chermoul, a former colonel in the Federation Navy marines, the petition contained the signatures of many other senators and regional governors, particularly those connected to Caldari-occupied areas of sovereign Federation space. Calling for the competency of FDU commanders and the deployment of their assets to be investigated, the petition was a strong challenge to the Federation's defense establishment.
Even so, the Senate Defense Committee issued a preliminary report indicating that it found "little to be concerned about" concerning the FDU's administration. Senator Chermoul expressed the hope that this preliminary finding was a true reflection on the FDU but pointed to the plain fact that Federation space had been overrun by Caldari militia forces. As the investigation into the FDU continued, an increase in the intensity and pace of activity in the Federation Senate was evident, reflecting the widespread concern over the Caldari victory in the militia war zone. This concern was perhaps the impetus behind the Federation Navy's liaison to the Senate Military Oversight department engaging in his own parallel review of the FDU.
Whatever the case, the fact that the Navy was itself engaging in an investigation while the Senate was carrying out its own review caused considerable controversy. This controversy erupted in a heated session of the Senate in which the authority of the Federation Navy to carry our oversight functions with respect to the capsuleer militia was questioned severely. Some analysts expressed outrage at the notion that the Federation Navy might even take direct command authority over the FDU, something that would threaten the limitations on warfare between the empires established by the CONCORD Emergency Militia War Powers Act. Despite the controversy over the FDU and the parallel reviews, the Senate was able to pass a major new defense spending bill aimed at upgrading and hardening the Federation's defense communications network.
The Konora Emergency
In the Minmatar Republic, there were echoes of the Skarkon Incident of YC110 with an apparent Angel Cartel intervention in the Konora system. Beginning with unrest over food shortages in the system, linked to the notorious system of N-RAEL, the situation in Konora escalated after rioting in which several people were killed. Using the situation as a pretext, an Angel Cartel force led by a mysterious figure known as 'Commander Origen' took control of the Konora system and its various mining and industrial colonies under cover of distributing large supplies of food. With the Minmatar Republic government concerned to act decisively, Sanmatar Shakor called an immediate conference of commanders, including representatives of a Thukker Tribe military caravan.
The situation in Konora deteriorated sharply after the violent suppression of pro-Republic protests on several of the colonies under Angel control. Dozens were reported to have been killed by Angel troops firing without warning on the protestors. Commander Origen claimed that the action had been "necessary ... to quell the rioting" but in a surprising development the Angel Cartel itself issued a statement disavowing Origen's forces as "renegades" in breach of "Cartel law." At the same time reports emerged of a battle between Angel Cartel forces and apparent renegade vessels in the neighboring N-RAEL system.
The massacres that appeared to be taking place in Konora spurred the Minmatar Republic on and within two days a joint Minmatar-Thukker task force struck against the renegade Angels and drove them from Konora. Many renegade ships were destroyed in system and there were reports of fleeing renegades being engaged by Angel Cartel forces waiting in the Great Wildlands. The fate of the enigmatic Commander Origen was never established but it did emerge that the renegades had conspired with Konora system officials to manipulate the situation and engineer the food crisis in the first place. Interestingly, the Thukker military forces involved were reported to have used a wormhole to insert their forces into Konora and execute a surprise attack on the renegade's rear echelon forces. The Konora Emergency was declared to be over by Sanmatar Shakor's office a week after it had begun, laying to rest any comparison with the handling of the Skarkon Incident.
Reform and Reaction
In the Caldari State, the controversial Provist Military Reforms Act was finally passed by the Chief Executive Panel despite opposition from the , and corporations. The Patriot bloc backed reforms were passed with the support of the Ishukone and [CBD]((../../new-eden/organizations/cbd-corporation) corporations. In essence, the united "Patriot Three" were able to peel the Practical CBD and the Liberal away from their respective factions, thereby undermining the opposition to the reforms. The Ishukone move appeared to be motivated by the modernizing tendency of the corporation and the concerns of their Navy veteran CEO Mens Reppola. CBD's motives for breaking ranks with its fellow Practicals were less clear but most observers attributed it to the corporation wishing to distance itself from Nugoeihuvi following the controversial incident in Uphallant.
In the Amarr Empire, a controversy over transcranial microcontrollers erupted in the wake of closer unity with the Khanid Kingdom, where their use for slave control was quite common. Some hardline Amarr traditionalist holders tried to have a case banning the use of the devices heard by the . The Council declined to hear it, however, reaffirming that matters of slave control and discipline were for individual Holders within the broad framework of the imperial and religious law. While the dispute prompted at least one hardline Holder to move from the relatively liberal Tash-Murkon domains to the increasingly orthodox Ammatar Mandate, the major beneficiary of the publicity appeared to be Ishukone Corporation. The transcranial microcontroller manufacturer promptly offered bulk rate deals to all interested Amarr Holders.
The month closed with the shocking news of killing of Matar. Jarek was killed during an attack by masked vigilantes on the township 'Salvation' he founded for his followers in the Tronhadar valley region of Matar. The news spread quickly among the scattered Salvation Crusade communities, inducing shock and disbelief among their number. Other Minmatar converts to the Amarr faith expressed deep concern at the killing. Initial indications that extremists from the may have organized the attack prompted an investigation and co-operation with the government by the tribal authorities but little was expected to come of it by way of catching and punishing the killers.in an attack on the Salvation Crusade community in the lower Tronhadar region of