Picking up where I left off.
TOP- Unquestionably the best military in the game. Anyone who debates this is a fool. This is your 2nd attempt at trying to be an empire-builder, and I honestly think it will fail this time. Not because you have poor FA people, not because you are inept, or incompetent, rather because you have built your foundation on a house of cards. You now need to rely on a vast assortment of people whom you are either a) in the process of rolling or b) have far more loyalties elsewhere than to you (because you have done nothing ever, to truly earn any loyalty) to fortify your position after this war. The one thing you have going for you, and the one thing that can make me be wrong... is that you have Ardus.
NATO - The word underrated probably applies more to your alliance than to anyone else. Sometimes, it is difficult for me (because I am old and crotchety) to accept that this is not the same NATO that tried to power play all of Aqua because of the NPO ties, back in the ICE days. The problem was, we looked at NATO with so much disdain for their whole "Umm, we are with NPO, so we run Aqua" attitude, that is really did jade every opinion about you post-Karma. If I stay in this game past this war... you guys have become my new mission. Not to try to make you love, and or even respect me.. but for me to determine exactly how different you are from NATO circa 2008. Expect me to be around if I stay. And feel free to totally reject me, after my treatment of you for better than 4 years, I wouldnt blame you. Hell, its what *I* would have done. But, I AM, once again, old and crotchety.
Umbrella - Filth. Complete filth. And it is so hard for me to believe that. I look down the list at individual members, and I see so many people I call a friend. But as a collective, you are completely unappreciative filth who feel like you are entitled to worship from others because of a collection of stats. You come across to everyone (even your own DH allies said it many times).. like your own feces do not stink. In the same war, I and my alliance burned for you, I and my alliance championed your cause in regards to terms. Truth is.. the egg is on our (mostly my) face, because your gov didnt even have the common decency to offer up a thank you. It was much more important for you to quickly begin the planning phase to sweep up those who just worked to defend and save you. Classy. Never change.
TIO - Let's be frank. I dont like you. You dont like me. The dislike began when we (Athens) hit an ODP partner of yours 4 wars ago (while holding an ODP with you). While I do understand that, I think that you guys now are starting to realize why no alliance should allow treaty ties on the other side of a war to handcuff their actions in a war. If you are not realizing that now, then there truly is no hope for you. Still, oddly enough, I look down your list of members, and I see several people I count as friends. So it makes the alliance-alliance dislike, quite uncomfortable.
Sparta - Literally the only good thing about your who alliance is Londo (for some unknown reason) chose to join you over TOP. The truth is... that is massive step down for Londo, as your own alliance gov has said 2 wars in a row now, that you are "happy to be lapdogs". Congratulations on your happiness.
Non Grata - I could sit here and type love all day long, and it would not adequately communicate how I feel about you guys. That you manage to ruffle so many feathers, is a badge of honor. That you manage to be such a polarizing entity affirms that you play the game properly. The game is not about always winning, but is about having the courage to take the chance.
Legion - essentially sitting out most of the last 2+ years of the game, you still managed to live up to your years old reputation of not being able to field a proper offensive, even while possessing such superior numbers. All your alliance is, and all it can ever be, is simply a pawn in other folks machinations. This is not necessarily a bad thing, as 95% of the alliances in this game fit that bill. But, you seem to indicate both that you a) want to be more... or b) think you are more. Either of those 2 realities make you the punchline of a joke. If you possess a strong leader, you need to find him and give him the reigns.
LOSS - If a new WAE were held today, you would win hands down. How any single member of yours can look at these last 2 wars (the means by which you entered, the allies whom you abandoned, simply to be on the winning side) and hold your head up high and say " I am proud to be a part of this"... is mind boggling. The even more mind-boggling thing is that you could still have achieved your noble goal of simply being on the winning side, without defecating in the faces of your allies in public. What a joke.
Valhalla - You are trying to play the broader political game, and for that effort, I applaud you, because very few ARE trying. I survey the world now, and I cast a leaf to the air to see the way the wind blows. I am not sure that you guys can see the forest because those pesky trees are in the way. The truth is, I will either be right or wrong in my assessment, and we will both know by Spring. If I am wrong, I will be the 1st to admit it. Jury is out on you.
Dark Templar - Nothing but respect for you guys. I just wish you would also try to take more of an active leadership role in the broader world. I only wish this because I know you have the people who can. You also have enough of a broad respect among all factions that you could inject yourself as a centralizing power.
Stay tuned for 21-30. I know you cannot wait for my further insights!