Jump to content

While the Imperator’s away…


Imperator Azenquor
 Share

Recommended Posts

[b]***Imperial Palace, Sygh-Varthys (9:02 am)***[/b]
[IMG]http://i328.photobucket.com/albums/l358/ImperatorAzenquor/BucharestParliamentPalace.jpg[/IMG]

The Imperial Palace was abuzz with activity as workers, aides and advisers moved swiftly through the halls. In one of the conference rooms, the staff frantically assembled tables and chairs to host a last minute meeting between the Imperator and the clergy. In hushed tones, the staff expressed their anger at being given less than ten minutes to ready the entire conference hall.

Meanwhile, just one floor away, there was an island of calm in the sea of chaos. In the Imperator’s Office there was almost complete silence as the two individuals looked at the board in front of them. A knock on the door, quickly distracted them. With a slightly annoyed edge to his voice Pyotr yelled:

[i]“Enter!”[/i]

The door swung open and the Palace chef walked in followed by two waiters from the kitchen staff. The chef smiled warmly before bowing slightly and breaking the silence.
[i]
“Your Highness, Mademoiselle Trubachev. Pardon the interruption. Breakfast is served.”[/i]-Chef Vitaly

Immediately the two waiters stepped forward and placed two dishes in front of the Imperator. Without being asked to, one of the waiters carefully removed the chess board and placed it on a nearby table. Once they stepped back, the chef spoke again:

[i]“The dish on the left is succulent poached trout in my special herb and butter sauce. It is tres magnifique! The dish on the right is most delectable…bacon and eggs. If there is anything Your Excellency or mademoiselle needs, please do not hesitate to call.”[/i]

With an exaggerated bow, the chef walked quickly out of the room. The two waiters waited for a moment before leaving the room. As they walked out, the first waiter was heard saying:

[i]“…and the funny bit is, the !@#$%^& Vitaly isn’t even French”[/i]

Sofia Trubachev raised an eyebrow questioningly and glanced at Pyotr. The Imperator simply poked the trout with his fork before replying:

[i]“It’s true. Chef Vitaly isn’t French, even though he pretends to be.”[/i]

Suppressing a giggle, Sofia asks:

[i]“So, mon ami, where is he from?”[/i]
[i]
“Some far flung corner of our gloriously expansive Vaulian Empire.”[/i]- Pyotr replied with a hint of sarcasm in his tone.

[i]“So…trout a la Vitaly, or bacon and eggs?”[/i]-Pyotr

Without missing a beat, Sofia nudged the plate with the trout closer to Pyotr and smiled.

===

[b]***Imperial Conference Room #4 (9:35am)***[/b]
[IMG]http://i328.photobucket.com/albums/l358/ImperatorAzenquor/36470963211004_050.jpg[/IMG]

A group of 50 Cardinals of the Vaulian Orthodox Church paced about the room as they waited impatiently for the arrival of the Imperator. Several of the Cardinals glared angrily at the door in frustration, while the Patriarch sat facing a window with a neutral expression on his face. Patriarch Alexei knew that the meeting would not be a pleasant one so he simply prepared himself for it. It wasn’t often that the Cardinals of the Church requested a meeting with the Imperator. It was usually the case that the Imperator, as Head of the Orthodox Church, would summon them.

The door to the conference room opened slowly and the Imperator strode into the room. Without acknowledging the presence of the Cardinals (who continued to angrily glare in his direction) Pyotr greeted the Patriarch and took his seat at the table. After waiting a few more seconds, Pyotr addressed the Cardinals.

[i]“Good Morning Your Excellencies. I trust your journey was not a difficult one? Now, how may I be of assistance to our Mother Church this fine morn?”[/i]

Cardinal Kirov seized the opportunity and spoke:

[i]“Your Highness. Several members of the Council of Cardinals have expressed some concern about the direction that our church is taking. We are having to reconcile the traditional teachings of the church, with the modern view of religion. We are seeing the powers of the secular authorities seep slowly into areas where the church held sway. Naturally we are concerned about this. If the right balance is not found between secular and religious powers, then we will soon have an unstable and ungovernable society.”[/i]

The Imperator nodded before replying:

[i]“I assume that this encroachment of secular powers refers to the recently approved law to legalize divorce?”[/i]

There were murmurs of agreement from several of the Cardinals before the Imperator spoke again.
[i]
“And you are concerned that by legalizing divorce, the state is paving the way to forcing the Vaulian Orthodox Church to also recognize divorce?”[/i]

Cardinal Kirov nodded. Pyotr took a deep breath before speaking:

[i]“The law in question does not mandate the Orthodox Church to change its position on marriage. However from the point of view of the state, all secular marriages may be dissolved in the eyes of the state. Personally I am of the view that this is an area where the Orthodox Church could use a dose of modernity. A bit of modernization will not be the end of the Church, but rather the beginning of a renewal.

The law, in its current form, shall stand as I have no intention of vetoing it. I urge the Church to review its practices.”[/i]

Cardinal Fyordorov rudely interjected:

[i]“And if the Parliament approves an abortion law next? Where will the depravity end?”[/i]

After an awkward moment of silence Pyotr replied:

[i]“If the Parliament approves such a law, I would make my position on the matter known and would contemplate a veto. However it is irresponsible to make the assumption that the next step on the road to ‘liberalism’ is abortion. While the Orthodox faith remains the official religion of state, I will not allow the Orthodox Church to behave or act as if it is above the state.”[/i]

Visibly angered, Cardinal Fyordorov leapt to his feet and shouted:
[i]
“You are supposed to be the Head of the Orthodox Church and Defender of the Faith! Yet you are willing to allow a Parliament packed full of Socialists and their Liberal allies to destroy 300 years of tradition! How [b]dare[/b] you!”[/i]

The other Cardinals were stunned and could only look silently from the Imperator to Fyordorov and back. Patriarch Alexi mumbled the Lord's Prayer under his breath. The Imperator glanced at Fyordorov, expressionless, then snapped his fingers. A Priest carrying a large book with him walked cautiously into the room. The Priest bowed before placing the large book on the table and opening it.

Without breaking eye contact with Cardinal Fyordorov, the Imperator said in a calm voice:

[i]“Father Morgunov. Section 18 Paragraph 2 if you will”[/i]

Immediately the Priest recited:

[i]“If at any time His Most Orthodox Royal Highness the Imperator is given cause to believe that any individual member of the Council of Cardinals is unwilling or unable to efficiently discharge his clerical duties, it shall be the prerogative of His Most Orthodox Royal Highness, in his capacity as Defender of the Faith, to remove such a Cardinal from the Council and to appoint a worthy replacement at his earliest convenience.”[/i]

The Imperator stood, still facing Cardinal Fyordorov:
[i]
“Now…Cardinal Fyordorov, did you say something? Keep in mind that it is within my authority to have you removed from this council and sent to be church’s representative to the Antarctic Territory, or to Sakhalin perhaps.”[/i]-Pyotr
[i]
“I…I…I sincerely apologize Your Majesty, I…”[/i]-Fyordorov

Before Cardinal Fyordorov could finish speaking, the Imperator interrupted him:
[i]
“Gentlemen, this meeting is adjourned. We will resume this discussion at a later date.”[/i]

Imperator Pyotr walked calmly out of the room and returned to his office. As soon as the door closed, Pyotr turned to his Imperial Chief of staff, and said:

[i]“I need a vacation”[/i]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b]***Imperial Palace, Sygh-Varthys***[/b]

In the Imperator’s Office, Pyotr and his Chief of staff carefully examined the contents of two folders. The Imperator made a few changes to the documents in the first folder before handing it to his Chief of Staff. Breaking the silence, Pyotr said:

[i]“Given that the two best options the Foreign Ministry can come up with on such short notice are Marscurian Siberia and Slavorussia. I think I’d rather go to Moscow. Could you work out the necessary security arrangements with the Slavorussian Embassy here and notify our embassy in Moscow.”[/i]-Pyotr

The Chief of Staff nodded and rushed from the office to contact the Foreign Ministry. With the official go ahead, the Diplomatic Corps sent an initial message to the government of the Slavorussian Empire in Moscow:

[quote][b]To: The Government of the Slavorussian Empire
Fr: The Office of the Imperator of the Serene Republic of Vaule
Re: Entry/Visa Application for Imperator & staff
[/b]

The government of the Serene Republic of Vaule, on behalf of the office of the Imperator, would like to request permission for the Imperator and 10 members of his support staff to vacation in Moscow for a period of 14 days. Representatives of the Imperator have submitted the formal visa applications for the party of 11 at the Slavorussian Embassy in Sygh-Varthys, however due to the politically sensitive nature and potential security considerations; we thought it best to submit a written request to your government as well.

In the event that your government decides to approve the applications, other necessary paperwork and information will be submitted upon request. For the duration of his stay, if approved, the Imperator wishes to maintain a low profile and would therefore not be visiting in his capacity as the Vaulian Head of State.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely,
S. Sharapov, Vaulian Ambassador to Slavorussia
X. Onatopp, Head of Imperial Security
S. Voronin, Acting Imperial Head of Staff
[/quote]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[quote][b]Reply from the Foreign Ministry of the Slavorussian Empire[/b]

The Foreign Ministry of Slavorussia has decided to grant tourist visas for eleven (11) Vaulan citizens. Slavorussian travel protocols will require travelers to present customs officers with valid Vaulan passports upon arrival. Additionally travelers are required to be current with their vaccinations and may be required to submit to a physical health examination upon arrival.[/quote]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

After a prolonged delay due to the Zargathian situation, the Imperator and his entourage finally departed for Moscow. As was customary in such situations, the public would not be informed of the Imperator’s departure until after he had safely arrived at his destination.

The Imperator, Sofia Trubachev, two Imperial aides and seven bodyguards boarded a single government aircraft and departed for Moscow. After being cleared to enter Slavorussian airspace, the aircraft would land at the airport and taxi to the main terminal. As the Imperator’s party arrived at Slavorussian customs, they would each present a copy of their Vaulian passports along with the Slavorussian visas which had been issued to them. While all of the other passports would bear the full names and patronymics of their holders, the Imperator’s passport would simply read “Pyotr Anatolyevich Peaceheart”. Passports in hand, the group would wait carefully to pass through Slavorussian customs.

At the Vaulian Embassy to Slavorussia in Moscow, feverish preparations were underway to ensure that all was ready for the arrival of the Imperator. Diplomats at the embassy would file applications for concealed handgun permits with the Slavorussian government. These seven applications, if approved, would allow the seven bodyguards in the Imperator’s entourage to remain lightly armed for the duration of the Imperator’s stay in Slavorussia. The embassy was also tasked with several other crucial preparations. Embassy staff spent several hours on the phones filing reservations with restaurants in Moscow and reserving several hotel suites for the group. In order to maintain some amount of privacy, the staff would pay additional money to both the hotels and restaurants in order to avoid a potential media frenzy.

Eyebrows were raised at the Embassy when staffers were ordered to reserve ten hotel rooms for eleven individuals. Though none would dare speculate openly, the Embassy staff took note of the fact that they were not told to reserve a room for Ms. Trubachev.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b]***Moscow, Slavorussian Empire***[/b]

Anatoly Mironov deftly pushed his way through the rush hour crowds in central Moscow as he moved closer and closer to his targets. Despite the chilly Moscow weather, Mironov set about his task with his usual efficiency. For a moment, he sighed and asked himself how he had fallen so far. Less than a year ago he was a celebrated and award winning journalist for the Svoboda (Freedom) network, but now he was reduced to nothing more than a paparazzo. No longer tasked with writing hard hitting exposes about government waste or industrial misdeeds, instead he was reduced to walking the cold streets of Moscow in the hopes of catching a glimpse of the Imperator and the mysterious woman accompanying him.

He quickly crossed the street and ducked behind a bus stop as he neared his targets. The Imperator and the ‘mystery woman’, seemingly oblivious to Mironov’s presence, entered an upscale restaurant. As the Imperator held open the door, Mironov caught a glimpse of the mystery woman’s face. With a speed that could only come from years of practice, Mironov pulled out his camera and took several pictures. Not daring to risk entering the restaurant and exposing his position, Mironov remained out of sight and planned his next move. He pulled out his cellphone and sent a copy of the photographs to his editor’s office for verification. Once the pictures were sent, Mironov retreated to his hotel room to wait for his next opportunity.


[b]***Sygh-Varthys, Serene Republic of Vaule***[/b]

With the Imperator outside of the country, many of his duties would be temporarily transferred to the Crown Prince and his advisors. Crown Prince Yuri, found the situation extremely challenging as he was not well versed in the various kinds of political intrigue which took place on a daily basis. Nonetheless, he was eager for an opportunity to demonstrate his leadership abilities. He feared, as his sister Princess Yulia constantly reminded him, that he would only hold the title of Crown Prince until the Imperator had an heir.

Prince Yuri took a deep breath before he entered the Imperator’s office. Inside two generals from the Organization of the Zodiac (OZ) snapped to attention as the Crown Prince entered. The Crown Prince took his seat and broke the awkward silence:

[i]“ Gentlemen, please proceed with your report.”[/i]

The first General nodded to the second, who stood to make his report. After an hour of excruciating details about the state of the Vaulian Armed Forces and their operational readiness in light of the budget cuts, the general handed the Crown Prince a 30 page dossier then returned to his seat. The Crown Prince skimmed the lengthy document then dismissed the Generals. As soon as the Generals left, closing the door behind them, Yuri threw the dossier into an ever growing pile on his desk and left the room, deciding to read it later. As soon as the dossier landed on the table, a single page flew out and landed underneath the desk. The page had a large red stamp labeled “Classified: Important”.

Minutes later, as the Chief of Imperial Staff walked into the office, he picked up the piece of paper and read it:

[quote]
[b][u]***Highly Classified***[/b][/u]
[b]To: Office of the Imperator
Fr: Sr. Gen. N. Vache, Commander of Special Forces
CC: Sr. Gen. X. Onatopp, Commander of OZ Aries Division
[/b]

[i]Re: Discontent within Armed Forces [/i]

It has come to the attention of certain officers within the Intelligence Corps, that there is a certain level of discontent among a small group of individual officers within the Armed Forces of the Serene Republic of Vaule. It is understood that this discontent arises from the preferential treatment granted to the Organization of the Zodiac and the presence of a separate Command Structure for OZ which is outside of the normal chain of command.

While some amount of friction between armed forces branches has always existed, we have noted that two recent incidents in which three soldiers of OZ who allegedly committed court martial offenses were detained by the Army, but were handed over to OZ High Command (OZHC) after the judiciary upheld the inability of the Armed Forces to place OZ soldiers on trial. It is understood that OZHC decided upon minimal sanctions for the individuals in question and noted the reluctance of the Armed Forces to provide evidence to support their case.

I have elected to bring this matter to your urgent attention as I have obtained wiretap evidence which suggests that the level of discontent has not gone unnoticed by Sr. Gen. Morgunov. Sr. Gen. Morgunov, in a meeting with Prime Minister Svatek expressed support for a move to introduce legislation to move OZ under the command of the civilian government.

I reiterate that such a move would be constitutionally illegal without the express approval of Your Most Orthodox Royal Highness. While I would not presume to inform Your Royal Highness of how to respond to the situation, may I suggest that Prime Minister Svatek be reminded explicitly of the illegality of such actions and the potential consequences thereof?

Signed,
N. Vache
[/quote]

As soon as he read the memo in full, the Chief of Staff grabbed the nearest phone and demanded to be connected to the Vaulian Embassy to Slavorussia. Once the secure connection was made, he carefully faxed the document and destroyed the original. As he glanced out over the skyline of Sygh-Varthys he said quietly to himself:

[i]“Just brilliant... The potential crisis of the decade and the Imperator’s on vacation and the Court Jester ‘s in charge…”[/i]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

[b]***Army HQ, Sygh-Varthys (4:03am)***[/b]

Lieutenant General Grigori Stepashin paced carefully around his office, occasionally stopping to wipe away the beads of sweat on his forehead. The General almost leapt into the air as the phone on his desk rang, breaking the odd silence in the room. After taking a deep breath, Stepashin picked up the phone and muttered a calm:

[i]“Hello.”[/i]

A slightly annoyed voice simply responded:

[i]“Is this a secure line?”[/i]-?????

[i]“Of course.”[/i] -Stepashin

[i]“Excellent. Comrade General, you may make your report.”[/i]-?????
[i]
“Morgunov is still not onboard and he will not support any action. While he has expressed concern about the situation with OZ, his concern stops short of taking direct action. Any plans should not expect to have General Morgunov’s support”[/i]-Stepashin

[i]“That is unfortunate Comrade General. The support of General Morgunov is essential for our plans to proceed smoothly. You must present the situation, and our plans directly to General Morgunov.”[/i]-?????

[i]“And if he refuses?”[/i]-Stepashin

[i]“Then see to it that he is incapacitated. Then as his Deputy, you will take charge of the Army. Once all is in place, you will be called on to act.”[/i]-?????

[i]“You do realize that in order for the head of the Army to take such action, there would have to be an incident of significant magnitude.”[/i]-Stepashin

[i]“Do not worry about that Stepashin. When the time is right, you will know.”[/i]-?????

[i]“Understood. Go with God Comrade.”[/i]-Stepashin

[i]“Thank you Stepashin. May we save our glorious nation.”[/i]-?????


===

[b]***Moscow, Slavorussian Empire***[/b]

The Vaulian Embassy in Slavorussia was once again a hub of diplomatic activity as soon as the classified document arrived. High level diplomats were feverishly calling their contacts in both the Palace and Military Intelligence to confirm the accuracy of the memo. Once confirmation was obtained, the Vaulian Ambassador to Slavorussia placed the memo in the diplomatic pouch and left the Embassy for the Imperator’s hotel.

[b]***Outside the Hotel, Moscow, Slavorussia***[/b]

Anatoly Mironov, who had managed to obtain a room at the hotel, spent his time trying to catch a glimpse of the Imperator or his entourage. Mirnov looked up from his newspaper just in time to see the Vaulian Ambassador enter the hotel. As inconspicuously as he could, Mironov grabbed his camera and followed him.

===

[b]VNN News: Gov't proposes military reform legislation[/b]

[i]"The minority government of Prime Minister Bryon Svatek has introduced landmark legislation to overhaul the military command structure of the Serene Republic. Under the proposed reforms, the Vaulian Military High Command (VMHC) will be merged with the Organization of the Zodiac Military High Command (OZMHC). The reforms will also remove the immunity of OZ soldiers from non-OZ military tribunals and will place the Organization of the Zodiac under the control of the civilian government.

In a speech to the Parliament, Prime Minister Svatek highlighted the efficiency of having a single military command structure as well as highlighted concerns that the Organization of the Zodiac (OZ) was becoming an Imperial Paramilitary force that was only accountable to the Imperator. He also pledged that the new reforms would not seek to disband OZ or to change the composition of individual OZ units, instead, he said, the focus would be on a unified military command structure.

Leader of the United Vaulia Party, Adam Kerbev (who until a month ago was in a coalition with the government) asked if the reforms would include provisions to reunify the police and the military into a single command structure. As of nine years ago, the government took the decision to create the Guardians of the Peace of the Serene Republic (G.P.S.R.) as a separate civilian police force with its own hierarchy and command structure. This marked the first time in the modern history of the Serene Republic that the police force was not an auxiliary branch of the military.

Three renown political analysts interviewed by VNN have suggested that it would be unwise for the government to seek to reintegrate the GPSR and the military high command, especially in light of the relative success of the GPSR as an organization. When we consulted a Constitutional Lawyer about the government's new proposal to reform the military command structure, we were informed that it would be possible to do so, but that the government is in danger of heading into a legal grey area. On the one hand, the civilian government does have the authority to approve laws changing the organizational structure of the military, and addressing issues of immunity, however as the Organization of the Zodiac is not officially a part of the Vaulian military, it would not be an easy matter to determine if they would fall under the jurisdiction of the civilian government."[/i]-Reporter

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b][u]VNN News: Military reform bill approved by Parliament[/b][/u]


[i]“Prime Minister Svatek’s controversial proposal to merge the Vaulian Military High Command (VMHC) and the Organization of the Zodiac Military High Command (OZMHC) was approved by the Parliament this morning. Despite having a minority of the seats in the Parliament, the government was able to push the legislation through with the support of other parties. Our sources in the Prime Minister’s office have confirmed that some form of understanding has been reached between Prime Minister Svatek’s Party for Social Justice (PSJ) and the opposition bloc lead by the Liberal Democrat Party (LDP). As we understand it, the opposition will forgo any plans to bring down the Svatek administration in exchange for budgetary concessions ahead of the next elections.

As soon as the military reform proposal was approved by the Parliament, a challenge was mounted by Constitutional lawyers in the Supreme People’s Court on the basis that the civilian government did not have oversight authority of the Organization of the Zodiac (OZ) and could therefore not order the OZMHC to merge with the VMHC. The challenge also claimed that the civilian government was seeking to exceed its authority with the reform proposal. The challenge was resolved mere hours ago as the Supreme People’s Courty ruled in favor of the government, declaring that the reform legislation was [b]‘within the bounds of the Constitution’[/b] and that the Organization of the Zodiac (OZ) are [b]‘considered to be a part of the Armed Forces of the Serene Republic’[/b].

With both the legislature and the judiciary in favor of the reform proposal, it came as a significant surprise to political analysts and commentators alike when it was announced by a spokesman for the Office of the Imperator that the newly approved law [b]‘and any future laws of this nature will be vetoed’[/b] and called on the government to [b]‘behave responsibly’[/b] when legislating. In line with this statement, His Serene Royal Highness Prince Yuri (acting on behalf of the Imperator) officially vetoed the reform bill at 1:32pm today.

In a stunning break with normal military protocol, Senior General Anatoly Morgunov (Commander of the Army) and General Bayar Khan (Commander of the Air Force) issued a joint statement calling the veto [b]‘a hastily made mistake’[/b] and urging the Palace to reconsider. The Generals also announced their resignations [b]‘in protest’[/b] of the decision taken by the Palace. The resignations, particularly of Sr. General Morgunov, have sent shockwaves through the military. It is unclear at this time if the Palace will accept the resignations of these senior military officials or will reconsider.[/i]-Reporter

===
[quote][b][u]***Classified Order***[/b][/u]
[b]To: General Anatoly Ourumov, Commander of the Reserve Forces
Fr: HMORH Imperator Pyotr
Re: Developing Situation[/b]

Reserve Force is hereby ordered to move to DEFCON 2 and to remain on 12 hour standby until further notice. All communication with other military branches is to be severed as of 2100 hrs. Additionally, Sr. General Anatoly Morgunov and General Bayar Khan are to be arrested immediately.[/quote]

===
[b]***Moscow, Slavorussian Empire***[/b]

With the situation in Vaule developing quickly, the Imperator and his staff decide to end his vacation early. The Vaulian Embassy to Slavorussia begins making plans for the Imperator’s return to Vaule within 24 hours. While the diplomats at the Embassy began making preparations, the Imperator sent an unofficial letter to the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church:

[quote]
Father Konstantine,

I understand that this may seem to be a most unorthodox request, but I shall make it nonetheless. It had been my intention to wait to marry my fiancée until an official wedding could be arranged in the Serene Republic. However in light of the recent developments in my homeland, this does not appear to be possible at this time.

Father, I therefore humbly request, if you shall consent, that you marry us prior to my departure from Slavorussia. I ask that you look favorably upon this request, but I fully understand if you are unable to do so.

Sincerely,
Pyotr R.I.
[/quote]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b][u]VNN News: Generals Morgunov and Khan disappear[/b][/u]


[i]“Less than 24 hours after their sudden resignations, Sr General Morgunov and General Khan have disappeared according to our reports. So far all attempts to reach either General have been unsuccessful. According to his family, General Morgunov was last seen leaving the Military High Command building in Sygh-Varthys en route for his home nearby. Despite three attempts to contact General Khan or his family, we have been unsuccessful so far.

The government has refused to comment further on either the statements made by the Generals prior to their resignations, or to address their sudden disappearances. According to a highly placed source in the Defense Ministry, the generals were arrested for their breach of the Armed Forces Code of Conduct and remain in custody. Our source could not clarify which branch of the armed forces carried out the arrest or where the generals were being held.

According to standard procedure, Lieutenant General Grigori Stepashin is expected to be named Acting Commander of the Army until a more permanent appointment is made. The Air Force, however, is expected to appoint a permanent replacement for General Khan sometime tomorrow morning.

Due to the current political crisis, a spokesman for the Office of the Imperator has revealed that Imperator Pyotr will return to the Serene Republic tomorrow morning in order to take charge of the situation. The Imperator’s office would not elaborate on this, but suggested that appropriate steps would be taken in the interests of the nation.

With less than two months remaining in his second term in office, Prime Minister Svatek will face an extremely difficult re-election bid due to both the political and economic stagnation of the past few months. The Party for Social Justice (PSJ) minority government is facing considerable criticism for its reform proposals that dealt a heavy blow to a previously strong coalition. Without the strength of a parliamentary majority, the government’s economic proposals and reforms are significantly watered down before being approved by the Parliament and are having little to no effect on the economic situation in the country.

For the ninth month in a row, the stock market declined and salaries remained frozen at last years levels. Unemployment has also risen sharply at a time when the government is attempting to cut major expenditures in order to reduce the deficit. Just yesterday, the Prime Minister revealed that the government’s economic plan, which would see the national debt eliminated in 8 years, has been derailed significantly by the delays in implementing state benefit and pension reforms.”[/i]-Reporter

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[quote]Imperator Pytor,

His Holiness the Patriarch Konstantine I, Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia has agreed to perform the ceremony of holy matrimony between you and your loved one. The Holy Office of Matrimony is a wonderful commitment and he would be happy to preside over the service.

Signed,
Father Georgi Stepanov[/quote]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

With the approval obtained from the Patriarch of the Orthodox Church, the Imperator would send another message to Father Konstantine thanking him for his acceptance at such short notice and requesting a convenient location for the ceremony to take place. The Vaulian Embassy in Slavorussia was once again a beehive of activity as more frantic intelligence reports flooded in. The reports suggested that the arrest of the two Generals, along with the high level of discontent within some units of the armed forces had finally reached a tipping point at which ‘the loyalty of the forces could be called into question’.

As one crisis slowly developed, two others emerged. With a level of secrecy that was nothing short of remarkable, Cardinal Fyordorov of the Vaulian Orthodox Church gathered the signatures of 27 members of the College of Cardinals, just slightly above the number required to summon the College. Cardinal Fyordorov could count on the support of his fellow co-conspirators, but he needed to employ less than noble techniques to gain the support of the other Cardinals. With a shocking level of ease, especially for a man of the cloth, Fyordorov bribed, or in some cases threatened, his fellow cardinals into submission. To those who were reluctant, he offered money and influence, and to those who were adamantly against, he used bribery and extortion.

With 27 signatures obtained, the College of Cardinals would be forced to gather within 48 hours. At that gathering, behind closed doors, Fyordorov would take the next step in his master plan.

[b]***Esternaya, East Ingushetia***[/b]

The city of Esternaya, far away from the politics of the capital was nonetheless embroiled in a political controversy of its own. The regional capital of the East Ingushetia Autonomous Community (EIAC) was the scene of a political battle between Ingush separatists and pro-government parties in the Regional Parliament. Since the recall of Governor Grigori Ourumov, neither political bloc held enough Parliamentary support to nominate one of their members to replace the former Governor. The empasse led to frequent battles in the regional parliament and the shutdown of the regional government.

Adding to the tense political situation, the rise of non-violent separatist groups as a counter balance to the anti-separatist regional government further complicated the political landscape. Though the government was still engaged in a low-intensity war against the more militant separatists, it could do very little to counter the increasing popularity of the new separatist organizations.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b]***Church of the Resurrection, Sygh-Varthys, Vaule***[/b]


Cardinal Fyordorov paced anxiously around the room as he waited for the other Cardinals to arrive. Every detail would have to fall into place perfectly. Fyordorov carefully rehearsed his speech to the gathering and waited. One by one, the Cardinals entered the hall and took their seats. Some of the Cardinals looked at Fyordorov with suspicion while others simply avoided looking in his direction.

The murmurs in the hall died down suddenly once Patriarch Alexei entered the room and took his seat at the head of the table. The Patriarch stared blankly at the 100 assembled Cardinals for a moment before turning to address them.

[i]“Gentlemen, we have been called here by Cardinal Fyordorov. It has been brought to our attention that there is some important information which must be acted upon by the College of Cardinals. We must at all times remember our places as the representatives of the Vaulian Orthodox Church and the faithful. Our church has hundreds of years of history. A long history which has been inextricably tied to the history of our nation.”[/i]-Alexei

Cardinal Fyordorov loudly cleared his throat and stared at the Patriarch. Without acknowledging Fyordorov, the Patriarch simply replied:

[i]“Forgive me, gentlemen. I appear to be rambling.”[/i]-Alexei

Cardinal Fyordorov stood and immediately launched into his speech:

[i]“Fellow Cardinals, we are charged by the Almighty to serve as the Defenders and Gatekeepers of the Vaulian Orthodox faith. It is our honorable duty to defend the teachings and doctrines of the church against the barrage of attacks they undergo on a daily basis. We continue to uphold the place of the Christian religion in our daily lives when many struggle to see the relevance of faith in the modern century.

Gentlemen, a vital pillar of our church and the bridge between the political and religious realms of government is the office of the Imperator. The Imperator serves as the chief representative of our faith. Therefore it is of paramount importance that the Office of Imperator be free from judicial issues which could complicate matters significantly. After all, if the Imperator himself does not obey our Constitution, then how can we be bound to obey the same Constitution?

Gentlemen, I have called you here today because I have uncovered some damning evidence which questions the very eligibility of His Most Orthodox Royal Highness Imperator Pyotr to serve as Imperator. I call your attention to Article 76, Section 8 of the Constitution of the Serene Republic.

According to the Constitution, the Imperator must be a natural born citizen of the Serene Republic upon the time of his or her coronation. Gentlemen, an individual in government who was burdened by the weight of truth, unburdened himself and revealed the truth to me. I launched a thorough investigation into each of this individual’s allegations and found them to be of merit.

Gentlemen, I have concrete evidence to show that at the time of his coronation Pyotr Peaceheart was not a natural born citizen of Vaule. As a matter of fact, he was not even born in the Serene Republic. I also have been unable to find a marriage certificate to prove that the late Imperator Azenquor the Great and Princess Juli of the Sarnungian Republic were in fact married at the time of Pyotr’s birth.”[/i]-Fyordorov

Several shocked gasps echoed throughout the hall as the Cardinals thought of the implications of the information being presented to them. After a short pause for emphasis, Cardinal Fyordorov passed around ‘copies’ of the Imperator’s birth certificate to prove his point.

[i]“My fellow Cardinals, under these circumstances, the College of Cardinals must take action. Though it pains me to say this, it is abundantly clear that Imperator Pyotr has not fulfilled his duty to defend the church. With this new information brought to light, there is only one course of action remaining. We, the College of Cardinals, must take the first step to remove Pyotr the Pretender from the throne and to salvage any remaining credibility that the Office of the Imperator has left.

Therefore I present the following resolution for your consideration”[/i]-Fyordorov

As soon as Cardinal Fyordorov took his seat, an Aide read out the full text of the resolution to the College of Cardinals and called on the assembled Cardinals to vote.

[quote]
[b][u]Resolution #1: Impeachment of the Imperator of the Serene Republic[/u][/b]

In light of the Imperator Pyotr’s blatant violations of the Constitution of the Serene Republic of Vaule and the duty of the College of Cardinals to uphold both religious and secular laws of the nation.

We, the College of Cardinals resolve to impeach Pyotr Zenquovich Peaceheart Zenn with immediate effect.

[b]Votes Needed: 51[/b]
[/quote]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b]***Church of Christ the Saviour, Moscow, Slavorussian Empire***[/b]

As inconspicuously as possible, the Vaulian delegation arrived at the church to meet with the Patriarch of the Orthodox Church. The Imperator, accompanied by three unarmed bodyguards and an aide entered the Church and waited to see Father Konstantine.

Less than two miles away, Sofia Trubachev made last minute preparations under the watchful eye of an Imperial bodyguard. On one hand, she was disappointed that the wedding would be such a rushed and last minute affair, on the other she feared that the urgency with which the marriage was being arrange reflected some major crisis in Vaule.

There was no desire for a large or lavish ceremony, simply an exchange of vows.


[b]***College of Cardinals, Sygh-Varthys, Vaule***[/b]

After Cardinal Fyordorov’s explosive speech, the College of Cardinals dissolved into a boisterous shouting match between the cardinals. Cardinal Kirov leapt to his feet and shouted above the din:

[i]“This is nothing but a political ploy by Cardinal Fyordorov and his co-conspirators to unseat the Imperator of the Serene Republic. The Imperator who was anointed by God almighty.

Fellow Cardinals, if there was any validity to these accusations Cardinal Fyordorov would have released them to the public and relished as the public would judge their validity themselves. The fact that he has not done this indicates that this is nothing more than a cheap ploy.

I know where my loyalties lie. They lie with the duly appointed Imperator of the Serene Republic. And I swear before God almighty and those assembled that I shall do all in my power to prevent his removal!”[/i]-Cardinal Kirov

Patriarch Alexei gave Cardinal Kirov a subtle nod before standing to address the College of Cardinals again:

[i]“Brothers, we must not forget our duty both to the people and to our faith. Let the votes we cast now reflect this duty. Let us not be blinded by politics or agenda. Gentlemen, let us vote"[/i]-Patriarch Alexei.

After half an hour of tense voting, an aide walked solemnly up to the Patriarch. Without a word, the aide handed him a folded piece of paper and left the room. The Patriarch opened it and frowned. He glared at Cardinal Fyordorov as he spoke:

[i]“I declare that the resolution has received the support of 56 of those present and is therefore passed. May God forgive us for what we have done!”[/i]-Alexei

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b][u]VNN Breaking News: Ourumov assassinated, possible Imperial abdication[/b][/u]


[i]“Good evening everyone. We have just received the following breaking news story from our bureau in Esternaya (East Ingushetia). Less than ten minutes ago there were two large explosions at the Regional Governor’s compound in the city. An initial assessment by emergency teams at the scene indicates the detonation of some kind of explosive device at the compound. It is unclear at this time what kind of devices these were or what exactly occurred. We can confirm, however, that Regional Governor Grigori Ourumov and at least 10 members of his staff were killed in the explosions.

Grigori Ourumov was the controversial regional Governor of the East Ingushetia Autonomous Community (EIAC) until earlier this year when he was ousted by a recall vote. Governor Ourumov remained in office however as the Regional Parliament was unable to overcome a deadlock in order to nominate his replacement. It is understood that Governor Ourumov intended to lead the Vaulian Nationalist Front (VNF) coalition during the next legislative elections in the province.

Police officers from the Guardians of the Peace of the Serene Republic (G.P.S.R.) have arrived at the Governor’s compound and have sealed off the area to the public. It is understood that the police are collecting forensic information and attempting to piece together the series of events leading up to the explosions. The G.P.S.R. has been careful not to speculate who could have been behind the explosions (if indeed they were not accidental) for fear of stirring up further conflict in the region. However, a statement by the Vaulian Nationalist Front (VNF) expresses ‘no doubt’ that the ‘Islamic separatists are entirely behind the assassination of Grigori Ourumov’ as he has been an immovable obstacle in their ‘quest for an Islamic state’.

Some more radical members of the VNF have called for revenge attacks in separatist strongholds in retaliation for the assassination of the Governor.

In other news, the College of Cardinals today approved a resolution to remove the Imperator from office. This shocking news came as the resolution was transmitted to the Supreme Court for its consideration. We understand that the College of Cardinals uncovered some alleged evidence indicating that HMORH Imperator Pyotr is ineligible under Vaulian law from holding the office of Imperator. It is understood that the College of Cardinals reviewed the evidence, and approved the resolution.

Before any action can be taken, the Supreme Court would have to review the resolution and the associated evidence and issue a ruling either in favor of or against the resolution. If the court rules in favor of the College of Cardinals, then the Constitution would compel Imperator Pyotr to abdicate the throne in favor of the next eligible member of the Royal Family under the Law of Royal Succession (1680).

The Office of the Imperator has not issued a statement regarding the resolution, but it is understood that the Imperial Staff is united in the belief that the resolution is without merit and will be rejected by the Courts.

We will keep following these developments here on VNN.”[/i]-Ray Porter


===

[b]***Classified: Sygh-Varthys, Vaule***[/b]

As quietly as possible, General Stepashin ordered two loyal artillery units to redeploy to bases near to the city of Sygh-Varthys. These two units would be augmented by the Sygh-Varthys Military Barracks which had quietly expressed its support for the General. Once the artillery units were in place, the Vaulian Military High Command sent a coded message to all military bases around the country. To the average observer, the message would simply appear to be an inventory checklist, but on closer inspection it contained an encoded list of coordinates and times.

One by one, units at most of the bases sent their coded replies to the High Command. Notably, however, none of the bases controlled by the Reserve forces acknowledged receiving the message or sent a reply.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b]***Zhukovgrad International Airport (6:32am)***[/b]

The Zhukovgrad International Airport was strangely quiet as a single Tupolev aircraft touched down and taxied towards the terminal building. The aircraft came to a halt a few feet from the terminal and was immediately met by a convoy of armored limousines. Without the customary welcome party, the Imperator and his bride emerged from the aircraft. An aide quickly ushered the Imperator into one limo and his wife into the other. Without wanting to attract even further attention, the cars quickly sped off in different directions.


[b]***Sygh-Varthys Military Base (6:42am)***[/b]

With the last details in place, General Stepashin sent a short broadcast over the military frequency and the military network. The message simply read ‘Initiate operation’ and was followed by a series of encrypted confirmation numbers. Almost immediately, several military bases covertly indicated their support for the General and his plan.

Without warning, a contingent of troops from the nearby military barracks deployed around the Military HQ and set up several checkpoints. The first set of checkpoints would prevent access to both the Military High Command building and would block one of the major arteries of the capital city.

On the outskirts of the city, the 1st and 2nd Sygh-Varthys battalion took up position, moving tanks and artillery into range of the city.

[u][b]VNN TV Broadcast (6:45am)[/b][/u]

Regular broadcast programming would suddenly be interrupted for a breaking news bulletin. However, rather than the regular news studio, there would be a broadcast from the Military High Command building in Sygh-Varthys.

Flanked by a Vaulian flag, General Stepashin saluted, then spoke:

[i]“My fellow Vaulians,

It is my responsibility to inform you that a few moments ago, His Most Orthodox Royal Highness Imperator Pyotr was removed from his position as Imperator of the Serene Republic of Vaule. As you have been previously informed, the College of Cardinals approved a resolution regarding the ineligibility of Imperator Pyotr to hold the post of Imperator. This morning, the Supreme Court of the Serene Republic reviewed the resolution and the supporting evidence and found that the resolution was warranted.

According to the Constitution, a resolution to remove the Imperator, which receives the backing of the College of Cardinals and is ruled valid by the Supreme Court, compels the incumbent Imperator to abdicate the throne. I can confirm that Imperator Pyotr has abdicated the throne and will be addressing the nation at his earliest opportunity.

Due to the current economic and political instability affecting the Serene Republic, along with the recent assassination of the East Ingushetia Regional Governor, the Armed Forces of the Serene Republic will take temporary charge of the executive arm of the government until such time as the Imperator’s replacement has been sworn in. The Armed Forces, through the Military High Command, will take charge of the anti-separatist campaign in the East Ingushetia Autonomous Community and will also confront other serious threats to the stability and democratic system of the Serene Republic of Vaule.

One such threat comes from within the ranks of our own Armed Forces. This threat from within is the paramilitary group the Organization of the Zodiac (OZ). This military unit, which is accountable to no one but Imperator Pyotr, has made it clear that it will not permit the Constitutional removal of Imperator Pyotr from the government. This unit has also expressed a willingness to turn its arms on the forces of the state to achieve this objective. We can not, and must not allow our nation to be held hostage by paramilitary forces seeking to use force to undermine law and order.

Due to these threats, in my capacity as Acting Head of the Army of the Serene Republic, I have declared a 72 hour state of emergency in the cities of Sygh-Varthys and Zhukovgrad and their surrounding areas. All citizens are urged to remain indoors for their safety.

Thank you for your cooperation. And may God bless the Serene Republic”[/i]-Stepashin

After the initial broadcast, the same message would repeat every hour on the hour. Strangely all non-government owned broadcasters would have trouble broadcasting due to interference and electronic jamming of their equipment.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

[b]***Military High Command Building, Sygh-Varthys***[/b]

With the military coup now well underway, the Military High Command became a beehive of activity. The hallways and neatly arranged offices were crowded with various military and civilian bureaucrats rushing madly around. Unlike the rest of the building, the Office of the Armed Forces Commander was calm, with only the occasional whisper heard by those outside. In the room, General Stepashin and a few of his co-conspirators carefully watched their force’s advance into the capital city.

The attack had been carefully planned to the last detail, and if properly executed, would seize the entire capital city with little to no bloodshed. Stepashin paced eagerly as he analyzed the situation. With an exaggerated amount of confidence, the General smiled and said aloud:

[i]“Gentlemen, by this time tomorrow night, we will have succeeded beyond our wildest imaginations. We have saved our noble nation from the brink. We have salvaged our national honor, and our national dignity.”[/i]

Before Stepashin could continue his speech, an angry sounded beeping noise interrupted. Confused, Stepashin stepped towards the large map display as several red dots appeared across it. Turning to an aide, Stepashin quietly asked:

[i]“What does that mean?”[/i]-Stepashin

[i]“It means that our forces in those locations have engaged in combat sir.”[/i]-Aide

[i]“Against who, Colonel?”[/i]-Stepashin

[i]“I do not know sir. Perhaps forces loyal to Imperator Pyotr?”[/i]-Aide

General Stepashin examined the map closely and reviewed his initial strategy. Without a word to anyone, Stepashin began contemplating minor adjustments to his strategy to compensate for the unplanned resistance in the capital.


[b]***Southern District, Sygh-Varthys***[/b]

A group of 100 soldiers from the 1st Sygh-Varthys Batallion quietly made their way into the capital city from the south. The units spread out into several lightly armed convoys led by APCs as they made their way towards the center of the capital. The Southern District consisted primarily of several residential apartment blocks built during the glory days of the Soviet Union. Against the backdrop of several identical drab apartment blocks, the soldiers carefully advanced searching for any signs of resistance.

The unit commander, Lt. Anatoly Sforza spearheaded his units advance into the city. As his convoy passed another set of identical apartment blocks, Lt. Sforza could have sworn he saw a shadow move in the distance. Against his better judgment, he ignored it and continued his careful sweep of the area. Seconds later, the Lieutenant saw what appeared to be three lights on top of a nearby building, moving rapidly towards his unit.

Reacting rapidly, Lt. Sforza turned to his nearby comrades and shouted [i]“RPG!”[/i] as the three grenades whizzed past him. Each of the grenades effortlessly hit the APCs in the main convoy. The soldiers in the unit who managed to escape unscathed from the initial onslaught, quickly ducked behind two nearby apartment blocks to regroup. Lt. Sforza barked orders to his unit as they came under fire from snipers positioned on the roofs of the nearby apartment blocks. After an intense firefight between the now surrounded soldiers and the snipers, more than 50 soldiers lay dead and several others were severely injured. As he called for reinforcements, Lt. Sforza quietly berated himself for his clear abandonment of normal military practices. His overconfidence had been his undoing. He and his men expected no organized resistance in the capital, and were nothing short of flabbergasted when they realized their fatal mistake.

The crackle of his radio broke his quiet contemplation. A somewhat sympathetic voice replied:
[i]“Lt. No reinforcements available in your sector a-t-m. Will advise a-e-o.”[/i]

The handful of troops alongside Lt. Sforza continued to return fire, but glanced cautiously at their commander, waiting for his next orders. Sforza seemed stunned for a moment, before he signaled his remaining troops to cease fire. Immediately Sforza pulled out a piece of white cloth and waved it frantically while shouting [i]“We surrender!”[/i].

Seconds later, the sniper fire ceased, but not before another of Sforza’s comrades was struck. Less than a minute later, the silence was broken by a woman’s voice shouting into a megaphone:

[i]“Lay down your weapons and come out, single file, with your hands in the air!”[/i]

Leading the way, Sforza threw down his rifle and walked out into the street with his hands in the air. Cautiously, the remainder of his unit followed suit. As they emerged from their hiding places, Lt. Sforza quickly counted his men and was shocked to find only 20 soldiers still alive. For what seemed like an eternity, Sforza and his unit remained in the middle of the street in a single file, with their hands in the air. The soldiers heard movement around them then saw OZ soldiers emerge from several of the nearby apartment buildings. The OZ soldiers, with their rifles carefully trained at the line of soldiers, moved into position a few feet away from Sforza and his unit. A single OZ soldier, clearly the woman who accepted Sforza’s surrender, walked towards them. The woman stopped in front of Sforza and carefully examined his epaulets.

Without hesitating or acknowledging any of the other soldiers, the woman turned to Sforza and shouted:

[i]“State your name Lieutenant!”[/i]-???

[i]“Lieutenant Anatoly Sforza, Sygh-Varthys 1st Battalion Commander”[/i]-Sforza

The woman pulled out a notepad and quickly scribbled a few words on it before returning it to her pocket. Seeking to break the awkward silence, Sforza said:

[i]“To whom do I have the privilege of surrendering?”[/i]

The woman smirked for a fraction of a second before drawing her knife. With machine-like coldness, she removed the front section of Sforza’s body armor. Seconds later, she drew her pistol and placed it squarely in the middle of Sforza’s chest. Before he could utter a reply, she pulled the trigger. As Sforza fell to the ground in a crumpled heap, the woman turned to address the remaining soldiers.

[i]“Gentlemen, you are all under arrest for treason against the nation. If you comply with our instructions, then you will not be harmed. However if you resist, we will kill you.”[/i]-???

The mysterious woman smiled as she stared at the remaining soldiers of Sforza’s unit. She turned away from them and began to walk away, then stopped and looked at them once again.

[i]“Gentlemen, I would greatly appreciate it if you would attempt to resist. After all, it’s less paperwork for me.[/i]-???

Several of the soldiers cringed as they saw the mysterious woman’s look of absolute glee. In fact, the soldiers were so stunned that they almost didn’t notice as they were handcuffed by her fellow OZ soldiers and lead towards a nearby vehicle. Before they were ordered on board, the mystery woman spoke once again, her tone heavily laced with sarcasm:

[i]“Now, where are my manners! It seems I forgot to introduce myself. Do forgive me gentlemen, one often forgets such things on the field of battle.”[/i]

The mystery woman bowed slightly before saying:

[i]“I am Lady Natalya Vache, Commander of His Serene Highness’ 3rd OZ Virgo Division.”[/i]-Vache

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b]***Imperial Residence, Zhukovgrad– 7:12am***[/b]


With state TV and radio channels under the control of General Stepashin’s loyalists and other private stations facing electronic jamming on a massive scale, the government faced a monumental task of attempting to regain control of the airwaves. After several hours of arduous work, forces loyal to the government managed to eliminate 50% of the electronic jamming sources and to gain control of a single TV station and its transmission equipment. Immediately, the television stationed broadcast a pre-recorded message from the Imperator to the nation.

Against a plain white backdrop and flanked by a Vaulian flag, Imperator Pyotr began his speech:

[quote]
[i]“Good morning citizens of the Serene Republic of Vaule. I speak to you know in the most unfortunate of circumstances. At this hour there are traitors within our Armed Forces who are attempting a military coup d’état against the Constitutional government of the Serene Republic. These individuals have sought to take advantage of a political situation in their quest to overthrow our government.

This cadre of traitors is led by General Stepashin who serves as the Acting Commander of the Vaulian Army. The General and those who have declared their loyalty to his cause, has illegally intervened in the affairs of the nation and has challenged my legitimacy as Imperator. This challenge, based upon the flimsiest of evidence, was brought before the Supreme Court as the Constitution requires. However mere hours before the court could issue its ruling, General Stepashin launched his coup d’état. With an audacity the likes of which we have never seen before, General Stepashin claimed that the courts had issued a declaration compelling me to abdicate the throne. This is false. No such declaration has been, or will be issued. As a matter of fact, the court was mere minutes away from announcing that the claims were without merit and malicious in nature.

As I speak, forces loyal to the traitor Stepashin have undertaken military action against the state and its institutions and against the constitutionally legitimate government of the Serene Republic of Vaule. Such action can not and will not be tolerated. The constitutional government of the Serene Republic of Vaule shall do all in its power to restore order to the nation and to see to it that the traitors are swiftly brought to justice for their crimes against the state and against the crown.

Let me make this abundantly clear. We shall respond to the traitorous actions of General Stepashin and his supporters with all due force. Our response shall be swift, it shall be just and it shall be without mercy. We will ensure that those who dishonor the Vaulian Army and who are willing participants in treason against the state are punished to the fullest extent of the law. Rest assured we will be victorious.

To those soldiers who are loyal to their motherland, but who have been fooled into fighting on the side of the traitors: you have a choice. You can choose to do your duty, or to be complicit in treason. All soldiers of the Vaulian Army are ordered to return to their barracks immediately and to disarm. Soldiers have 12 hours to comply with this order. Those who fail to do so shall be deemed to be in league with General Stepashin and will be treated as an enemy of the state.

In light of the unprecedented threats to the Serene Republic of Vaule and its constitutional government, by the powers vested in the Office of the Imperator, I hereby announce the implementation of Imperial Decree Number 1900A until further notice.

Under this decree, the Serene Republic of Vaule is hereby placed under a State of National Emergency and the Constitution is hereby suspended. To deal with these extraordinary circumstances, I have also elected to grant extraordinary powers to the Organization of the Zodiac (OZ) and the Guardians of the Peace of the Serene Republic (GPSR) for the duration of the emergency. I pledge that once the situation permits, we will rescind this decree.

Please bear with us as we confront this threat. Thank you for your continued support.”[/i]-Pyotr

[/quote]

As soon as the speech ends, a copy of the Imperial decree appears on the screen:

[quote][b][u]***Imperial Decree #1900 A***[/b][/u]

By the decree of His Most Orthodox Royal Highness Imperator Pyotr I:

A State of National Emergency is hereby proclaimed in all provinces and territories of the Serene Republic of Vaule until further notice.

The writ of Habeas Corpus is suspended until further notice.

The Constitution of the Serene Republic of Vaule (2011), with the exception of sections 28, 32 and 109, is hereby suspended until further notice.

For the duration of the State of National Emergency, the Organization of the Zodiac shall be granted extraordinary policing powers including but by no means limited to the authority to search any premises without a warrant and the authority to detain individuals.

The Guardians of the Peace of the Serene Republic (GPSR) shall be given the authority to search any premises without a warrant and shall be permitted to arrest individuals without charge for a period of 30 days.

The Military High Command of the Serene Republic of Vaule is hereby dissolved and all functions and duties thereof are transferred to the Organization of the Zodiac (OZ) High Command.

[/quote]

[b]***Imperial Palace, Sygh-Varthys (7:15am)***[/b]


In a covert mission ordered by General Stepashin himself, the 10th Parachute regiment of the Army rapidly mobilized 60 soldiers at an airbase just west of the city of Sygh-Varthys. The soldiers were rapidly equipped and loaded onto a waiting C-130 transport plane. As soon as the soldiers were on board, the aircraft took off and flew directly into the restricted airspace over the capital city.

After 10 minutes, the aircraft approached the Imperial Palace and dropped altitude. The final orders were given, and the soldiers began parachuting out of the aircraft towards the Palace grounds. After several minutes, all of the soldiers cleared the aircraft and were plummeting towards the Palace grounds.

Almost immediately after the first soldiers had landed, they rushed towards the main entrance to the Palace and stormed into the main hall. Once inside, the soldiers encountered and easily dispatched the lightly armed Imperial Guards. After 30 minutes of heavy gunfire, there was silence as the soldiers dispatched the last of the guards. The Commander of the Parachute regiment sent an encrypted message to the Military High Command informing them that the Imperial Palace was now secure.

With their initial task accomplished, the soldiers began carefully searching the Palace for the Crown Prince and any other members of the Royal Family who remained there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b][u]VNN News: Supreme Court affirms ruling, royals used as human shields[/b][/u]

[i]“Ladies and gentlemen, this is Ray Porter reporting for VNN News. After several major technical difficulties, we have finally been able to restore our broadcast capability. Over the past 48 hours, there have been several major developments in the ongoing coup attempt against the government.

A few hours ago, Imperator Pyotr, in a televised statement denounced the coup d’etat and vowed to prevail against General Stepashin’s mutinous forces. The Imperator made the claim that the coup was simply a part of a much larger conspiracy to unseat him, and that the conspiracy would fail and the Constitutional government of the Serene Republic would prevail.

Adding support to the Imperator’s statements, the Supreme Court of Vaule announced its official ruling, which upheld the legitimacy of the Imperator and rejected the claims that Imperator Pyotr was not a citizen of Vaule at the time of his coronation. The Court found that much of the evidence presented to it by the College of Cardinals consisted of ‘highly elaborate forgeries and misinformation’ and therefore was not legitimate. The Supreme Court also explicitly stated that, despite General Stepashin’s statement to the contrary, it did not issue any ruling or binding order removing Imperator Pyotr from the post of Imperator.

According to reports from reliably informed military sources, several units that previously followed General Stepashin’s orders have obeyed the orders to return to their barracks and disarm. It is understood, however, that there remains a dedicated core of at least 5 major military units that support General Stepashin regardless. It is understood that these units are concentrated mostly in the south of the country and near the capital city of Sygh-Varthys. Most of the soldiers who returned to their barracks as ordered expressed the view that they were simply ‘following orders via the legitimate military chain of command’ and were not ‘fully aware’ of the scope of the situation.

Meanwhile, though it is likely only symbolic at this stage, Imperator Pyotr signed a decree removing General Stepashin and the other military chiefs of staff from their posts until further notice and appointing their respective deputies to their positions for the interim. Additionally, the Armed Forces High Command will temporarily fall under the jurisdiction of the newly created Organization of the Zodiac Unified Military High Command (OZ-UMHC).

In other news, forces from the Sygh-Varthys division who advanced into the city last night, met stiff resistance from loyal forces and their advance was quickly halted. Despite this initial victory, we understand that forces loyal to General Stepashin have seized control of the Imperial Palace in Sygh-Varthys where they are said to be holding several members of the Royal Family hostage. According to an unnamed worker in the Imperial Household, soldiers parachuted into the Palace grounds and detained the members of the Royal Family before they could be moved to a more secure location. It is not clear at this time which members of the Royal Family are being held by General Stepashin’s forces.

In a message from an anonymous individual claiming to represent forces loyal to General Stepashin, it has been announced that the forces in control of the Palace will execute a member of the royal family every 4 hours until Imperator Pyotr abdicates both his claim and that of his family, to the throne. We will continue to watch this shocking news story as it unfolds.

This is Ray Porter reporting, for VNN news.”[/i]-R.Porter

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b]***Sygh-Varthys (8:45am)***[/b]

Faced with strong resistance from the OZ units deployed throughout the capital city, General Stepashin’s forces staged a rapid strategic withdrawal from the city. Not willing to be defeated, the Stepashin loyalists reestablished defensive positions around the city, effectively cutting the city off from the outside world. Tanks and armored vehicles were ordered to take up position just outside of the city and wait for further instructions from the High Command.

With all of the Stepashin loyalists withdrawing from the city, the General himself quickly abandoned the Military High Command building and rushed to the Imperial Palace (still under the control of Stepashin loyalists). As soon as he arrived General Stepashin ordered the most damaging retaliation he could think of.

At exactly 8:52am, a barrage of rocket and mortar fire was unleashed against the capital city. Stepashin loyalists launched a heavy barrage towards the central and south-western districts of the capital city, carefully avoiding the diplomatic quarter in the northernmost district.

In the space of 10 minutes, 48 missiles and 208 mortar rounds struck targets in the capital city. When the dust settled, 92 OZ soldiers and 146 civilians lay dead. Several residential apartment buildings were set on fire and several streets were blocked by falling debris.


===


The following high priority message is sent by courier to the UFE Embassy in the Diplomatic Quarter of the city of Sygh-Varthys.

[quote][b][u]***Highly Classified message to the UFE Embassy to Vaule***[/b][/u]

[b]To:[/b] Ambassador of the UFE to the Serene Republic
[b]Fr:[/b] Office of Her Serene Highness Princess Yulia

Your Excellency,

Our two countries have enjoyed a strong and enduring diplomatic relationship with each other which has stood in the face of many challenges. I am quite certain that you are aware of the unfortunate events which are currently unfolding in the Serene Republic. These events have led to an unprecedented situation in which the capital city is essentially under siege by mutinous forces and where members of the Royal Family of the Serene Republic are being used as shields by traitors bent on overthrowing the government.

In light of the current security situation in the city of Sygh-Varthys, I am currently unable to safely leave the capital city. I would therefore like to request temporary asylum in the UFE until the current security situation improves. I would greatly appreciate your assistance.

Sincerely,
Yulia Zenn, Princess of the Serene Republic of Vaule
[/quote]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[quote][b]To:[/b] Princess Yulia
[b]From:[/b] Vladimir Yanovich, Ambassador of the United Federation of the East
[b]Subject:[/b] Asylum

[b]Body:[/b]

Your request is granted. Further please convey to whatever authority you can, that we are ready to and have the capability for launching a direct assault against the traitors. Please let us know if and where assistance is needed so that we may render it at the earliest possible time.[/quote]

[quote][b]To:[/b] Office of the Special Tactics Branch of the Imperial Guard, 3rd Air Special Operation Squadron People's Liberation Air Force
[b]From:[/b] Office of the Grand Vizier
[b]Subject:[/b] Standby

[b]Body:[/b]

Prepare to mobilize for operations in Vauleyo upon request. Details forthcoming. Captains Ryu and Chakri's teams are to be prepared to hit two targets ahead of a main force on hot drop.

-Wei[/quote]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b][u]VNN News: Stepashin calls for recognition, gov’t begins major offensive[/b][/u]


[i]“In a statement released from an undisclosed location, former General Stepashin announced the formation of an interim ‘National Salvation Council (NSC)’. This self-proclaimed governing council claims to be the ‘sole legitimate interim government’ of the Serene Republic and claims to be ‘in full control’ of the traitorous military forces. According to the NSC, their military forces were ‘forced’ to act in order to prevent a coup d’etat by the Imperator and OZ forces. The council claims that the legitimate methods to remove the Imperator were followed, but that the process was obstructed by the ‘corruption of state institutions’ which they claim was ‘masterminded by the leaders of OZ’.

The statement continued with a direct appeal by the NSC to the international community for recognition. The Council also sent individual messages to various embassies to lobby for recognition as the ‘sole legitimate’ Vaulian government. It is understood that the Council has stressed its’ ‘commitment to democratic values and human rights’. As was expected, the constitutional government led by Prime Minister Bryon Svatek, issued its own statement rebuffing the claims made by the NSC. The statement also vowed to reassure citizens that all steps would be taken to ‘restore normality and constitutional order’ in the country. Prime Minister Svatek is expected to remain in office for the duration of the state of emergency, despite the fact that his constitutional term would have expired yesterday morning. This has been confirmed by the Palace in a statement released two hours ago.

In other news, forces loyal to General Stepashin are on the defensive nationwide as government forces launch a renewed offensive against them. Government forces were initially very limited in their military responses due to the presence of most of the Stepashin troops in and around large civilian areas; however the government has stepped up its offensive significantly in the last 24 hours. According to reports from our military correspondent, government forces have regained control of 2/3 of the city of Sygh-Varthys including the government quarter. During their hasty retreat from the city, Stepashin loyalist forces, who remain entrenched in the hills outside of the city, launched a massive artillery bombardment of the city which killed at least 150 civilians and wounded more than 300 people.

We will keep you informed of these and other developments as soon as we can. For VNN News, this is Ray Porter urging you to stay indoors and remain alert”[/i] – Ray Porter

===
[quote][b][u]Statement from the National Salvation Council of the Serene Republic[/b][/u]

Due to the insistence of Former Imperator Pyotr and his supporters to flagrantly disregard the illegitimacy of his administration and the inability of the current illegitimate administration to represent the people of the Serene Republic of Vaule, we hereby establish the [b]National Salvation Council (NSC)[/b] of the Serene Republic.

Due to the corruption of the existing state institutions and the Constitutional checks and balances, we can no longer recognize the judicial authority of the Supreme People’s Court of the Serene Republic of Vaule as it is no longer capable of impartially carrying out its duties.

The National Salvation Council shall hold paramount its duties to ensure the safety and welfare of the citizens of the Serene Republic and shall uphold the fundamental principles of democracy, human rights and the rule of law.

The National Salvation Council hereby establishes itself as the legitimate representation of the wishes of the people of the Serene Republic and shall strongly advocate for the holding of a free and democratic referendum regarding the status of the monarchy in the Serene Republic.

The National Salvation Council shall undertake the necessary military actions to prevent a coup d’etat by the Organization of the Zodiac (OZ).

The National Salvation Council calls upon the nations of the world to apply political and diplomatic pressure to the Former Imperator and his unconstitutional regime and to recognize the NSC as the sole legitimate government of the Serene Republic of Vaule.

[b][i]Signed, [/b]
G. Stepashin
A. Antonov
Y. Beria
M. Toplanek
R. Liu
X. Sharapov[/i]
[/quote]

===

[b]***Zhukovgrad Military High Command, 9:05am***[/b]

OZ Senior military officers rushed through the halls of the Military High Command as the government sought to get a more accurate picture of the current military situation. Officers manned a large bank of computers, phones and fax machines as hundreds of messages changed hands every minute. Due to the unusual situation, the military immediately switched from their standard encryption and encoding styles in order to avoid message detection.

In the National Threat Assessment Center (NTAC), the Imperator and Prime Minister held a closed door meeting with the Commanders of OZ and the Reserve Army. The Commanders: Anatoly Ourumov (Reserve Army), Xenia Onatopp (OZ Air & Ground) and Sergei Voronin (OZ Naval Marines), carefully reviewed the latest intelligence brief before presenting their report to the Imperator.

[quote][b][u]***Official Status of Forces Report as of (*date*)***[/b][/u]

Forces confirmed under the direct control of the government:
-All OZ forces divisions and Irregular Warfare division
-All Reserve Force Units of the Vaulian Armed Forces
-All units of the Navy of the Vaulian Armed Forces
-All units of the ABC Warfare unit and the Territorial Defense Forces
-All Special Forces units

Forces confirmed as declaring ‘wait and see’ or neutrality:
-All units of the Air Force of the Vaulian Armed Forces
-Approx 100,000 soldiers of the Regular Vaulian Armed Forces


Forces confirmed as supporting General Stepashin:
-Approx 230,000 soldiers of the Regular Vaulian Armed Forces


Recommendations:
-Focus offensive on using OZ Forces and the Reserve Army
-Avoid large scale engagements near civilian areas
-Restore total government air superiority in the south of the country.
-Prioritize reinforcing southern border forces
-Authorizing use of heavy weaponry, tanks and artillery
-Authorizing the use of white phosphorus and thermobaric weaponry.

[/quote]

[b]***Frontline, 9:15am***[/b]

With the authorization granted for the use of heavy weaponry, the Reserve Army wasted no time in deploying hundred of tanks and artillery pieces to the front line. Once all units were in place, the renewed offensive began.

Vaulian Heavy Artillery pounded nearly every military base in the south-west of the country while the ground forces made a careful advance. The troops met heavy resistance from Stepashin loyalists who tried desperately to hold the line. Once casualties began to mount and the momentum swung in favor of the government, the Stepashin loyalists staged a disorganized retreat into the nearest towns and cities in a bid to avoid further artillery strikes.


[b]***UFE Embassy to the Serene Republic***[/b]

A private courier arrived at the UFE Embassy carrying an official letter to the Ambassador.

[quote]
To: Vladimir Yanovich, Ambassador of the United Federation of the East
Fr: Office of Her Serene Highness Princess Yulia
Re: Request

Thank you for your assistance. It is greatly appreciated.

Regarding your offer of military assisance, I have conveyed said offer through the appropriate channels and am prepared to discuss this in greater detail upon my arrival.

Again, I offer my thanks for your assistance.
[/quote]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

With the outbreak of heavy violence to the north, a large contingency of both Marscurian Siberian army soldiers and guardsmen were ordered to the northern border to prevent the same attacks that accompanied the last outbreak of violence in the region. In total, 10,000 army soldiers and 15,000 members of The Guard were encamped along the border with their rifles and mortars, but no heavy weaponry like tanks and artillery. The cavalry units of The Guard were set on patrolling the forests and hills, looking for both possible combatants, and refugees trying to flee into the nation away from the violence.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b][u]VNN News: Stepashin forces routed in capital, offensive continues[/b][/u]


[i]“After another night of fierce battles, which saw the capital city being hit by no less than 83 mortar rounds, the government has full military control of the capital city. It is understood that forces loyal to former General Stepashin were driven out of the last regions of the capital city this morning.

The retreating forces launched round after round of mortar fire into the city before the last of their artillery positions were obliterated. It is understood that government forces moved carefully through the city ensuring that all enemy positions were neutralized. According to official reports, government forces also recaptured the Royal Palace in Sygh-Varthys. This operation was led by Vaulian Special Forces and resulted in the rescue of the Royal Family, as well as the capture of several senior Stepashin loyalists. Unfortunately, former General Stepashin himself was not amongst those captured or killed in the operation. We understand that the former General, and a few of his most loyal troops aided in his escape from the Palace ahead of the offensive.

Despite the significant gains made by the government and the deterioration of the cohesion of the mutinous forces, General Stepashin and his self-proclaimed National Salvation Council, have shown no sign of surrendering or acknowledging the difficulties that they now face. Moments ago, the National Salvation Council issued another statement in which they claim that they are in ‘full control of the Serene Republic’ and are again urging the international community to recognize them as the legitimate government.

With the capital once again fully under government control, former General Stepashin’s forces have been reduced to controlling a few areas in the south of the country. The government has again appealed for all of the mutinous soldiers to lay down their weapons and to recognize the authority of the state, but this plea is unlikely to have a major effect.

We will continue to monitor the situation across the country as rebuilding efforts are already underway in the capital. This is Ray Porter reporting for VNN News.”[/i]-Reporter

====

[b]***Embassy of the UFE to the Serene Republic***[/b]

As inconspicuously as possible, a car carrying Princess Yulia stopped in front of the Embassy. The Princess and an aide emerged from the car and entered the embassy compound. While the necessity of full asylum was not likely to be needed (if the government’s offensive was successful), the Princess still was tasked with delivering a digital military encryption key to the UFE embassy. The encryption key would allow the UFE to easily decrypt messages from the Vaulian military that were encrypted using the 'Zhukov Code'.

Once the encryption key was handed over, a high priority coded message from the Vaulian government was sent to the UFE. The message would outline the national situation and the specifics of the Vaulian request for military assistance.

[quote][b]
To: Vladimir Yanovich, Ambassador of the United Federation of the East
Fr: Office of the Imperator of the Serene Republic
Re: Military Assistance[/b]

Once again, I reiterate my government’s appreciation of the offer of military assistance in defeating the mutinous forces currently attacking our forces. In the interest of ending the conflict in the shortest time possible, while seeking to minimize further civilian casualties, we propose a joint military operation to finish off Stepashin’s forces once and for all.

As a result of our last offensive, General Stepashin’s forces are now concentrated in the south of the country, near to the border with the UFE. Despite this, I can confirm that loyal forces remain in control of the physical border itself. I believe that if our forces can launch a coordinated, two front offensive against these forces, we can defeat them entirely.

[/quote]

[quote]
[b]**Status of Military Operations in the Serene Republic of Vaule**[/b]

[IMG]http://i328.photobucket.com/albums/l358/ImperatorAzenquor/StatusMilitaire.png[/IMG]
-Map of Zones of Control
(Red = Under the control of Stepashin loyalist forces, Blue = gov’t controlled, Green = gov’t controlled but low level enemy activity)

[b]Request for military assistance as follows:[/b]
-Military assistance in regaining control of southern zones
-Joint military cooperation in offensive

[b]Operational Plan:[/b]
-Launching a massive two front offensive to rout enemy forces in the Southern Zones.
-Establishing total air superiority over the southern zones
-Capturing high level targets
-Preventing enemy forces from retreating across the border into the UFE.
[/quote]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[img]http://img718.imageshack.us/img718/2587/invasion.png[/img]

[i]Offensive operations.[/i]

[b]Operation Tamerlane[/b]

The Federation's Northwest Front, had begun a mobilization for several weeks now, a precursor to a massive strategic offensive. Now it was time to show the rebels, what was what.

F-5 and F-1 fighters began an immediate offensive against the integrated air defense systems in the area. Using their sophisticated passive sensor arrays, the optimized stealth aircraft would engage the entire radar electromagnetic signal emissions grid, with a HARM missile strike, to blind the enemy early on. This would make way for a striker force of A-47 attack drones which would employ cluster munitions against command centers down to the company level. Simultaniously, F-2 Squadrons would move in for close air support hitting enemy concentrations of armor and artillery. At the same time B-11 Bombers would use stand off cruise missiles to launch a massive strike against enemy concentrations of infantry and heavy equipment as well as cratering enemy air fields to deny them the ability to contest air superiority. F-3 interceptors would swoop in to hit enemy AWAC and battlefield control air craft in the sky, using their speed to bypass enemy defenses to get in range for the shot. A second wave of F-5s and F-1s would then sweep in to engage any hostile aircraft which managed to scramble to engage in an aerial counter attack.

With the air attack underway, seven armored divisions would rapidly begin flanking attacks on the lines of the rebels. These units would use observation drones and satellites, as well as battlefield control aircraft's synthetic aperture system to engage the enemy at beyond visual range engagement. The primary munition used would be satellite guided further increasing the accuracy. At the same time, the UFE would deploy its electronic warfare stealth drones to the area to jam the enemy's ability to do the same, thus allowing an advance through a combination of speed and fire power that would be difficult to match.

Supporting this, air borne divisions (marked with the x's) would be deployed using the UFEs new stealth transport fleet, to the enemy's rear. In total four airborne divisions would be tasked with establishing a line to cut off the ability for the enemy to retreat as the armored divisions swept around to encircle.

To top this off, mechanized infantry would launch a general broad front attack, backed up by concentrations of non-line of site mobile artillery.

[b]UFE Embassy[/b]

At the UFE Embassy, the PLA special forces squad would be deployed to begin immediate defensive operations, with a member of the royal family now inside the building. She would be escorted down to the secure bunker in the basement. Captain Hayabusa and Captain Chakri were estimated to be arriving shortly on a hot drop into the combat zone along with their special forces companies to participate in the embassy's defenses.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[quote][b]Private message to the legitimate Government of the Serene Republic of Vaule[/b]

To: The Office of the Imperator
From: President Malenkov of the The United Socialist Republic of Siberia
Subject: Escalation of Military Operations

I am writing to inform you that my military forces on our Western shared border will have an increased presence to maintain the security and integrity of our National Boundries. Furthermore, the Senate has granted me permission to deploy the entire Central Command battle formations to our Western Frontier to bolster the border aswell as maintain the ability to assist your regular and sanctioned irregular forces should you request it.

The Trans-Siberia railroad will be used to deploy the forces aswell as create massive depots of munitons, fuel, and humanitarian resources for immediate deployment to the Serene Republic by our Humanitarian Forces in the Disaster Relief Agency.

This message is a notification of our intent and reasoning behind the deployments so no confrontation of mis-interpretation of the moves can be made and we request you forward this message to your Field Commanders to make them aware of the development.

Long Live the Serene Republic.
Long Live the Imperetor.

Signed
S.Malenkov
President of the USRS [/quote]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[b]OOC:[/b] Zoot, I'll reply to your letter in my next post.

[b]IC:[/b]

[b]***Vaulian-UFE Border***[/b]

Vaulian security forces along the border simply stood by as UFE ground forces crossed the border. Once it was visually confirmed that allied forces crossed the southern border, a coded message would be sent to the government in Sygh-Varthys paving the way for the northern half of the offensive.


[b]***Vaulian Line of Control***[/b]


Thousands of Vaulian forces gathered just north of rebel held territory waited for their final orders to advance. The message came earlier than expected, but the Operation began nonetheless.

[b]***Operation Defiant***[/b]

Phase 1:

The Organization of the Zodiac Virgo Division quickly shut down multiple layers of the national defense systems in the south of the country. In less than ten minutes, the entire SDI, and several layers of the AA systems went offline. Systems that were not connected to the national defense systems, or could be operated independently of the defense system would have to be taken out manually. Once this initial objective was completed, the Virgo Division established a highly secure communication line to the UFE forces, in order to coordinate the overall operation.

Phase 2:

With the loyalty of much of the Vaulian Air Force still questionable, the offensive would rely entirely upon the use of OZ aircraft and support equipment. The OZ Aries division would mobilize three squadrons of aircraft for the initial wave of the offensive. Once the final orders were issued, 8 Bu-160 Angel (Tu-160M) bomber aircraft, escorted by 24 F-22 aircraft, flew due south over rebel-controlled territory.

The Bu-160s deployed electronic countermeasures to confuse enemy forces while the F-22s began strategic bombing runs. The F-22s targeted major RADAR installations, bunkers and runways in rebel held territory.


[b]***Rebel-held territory***[/b]

Expecting an assault from Vaulian government forces to the north, General Stepashin’s forces had prepared a detailed defense strategy based upon a northern front. With confirmation from all divisions that a massive UFE advance was underway, the rebel soldiers quickly changed their basic plans and adopted a more lethal defensive strategy.

With the handful of OZ aircraft attacking from the north, and the air power of the UFE from the south, the rebels quickly abandoned any serious attempts to get their aircraft off of the ground, instead their primary focus was a tactical redeployment to confront a two-front confrontation.

In the first few engagements of the offensive, 53 of the 70 aircraft held by the rebels were either destroyed on the ground or unable to take off due to destroyed runways and infrastructure. The remaining aircraft, almost entirely MiG 31 Interceptors, managed to take off and to engage hostile forces. With ground RADAR systems essentially blind, the aircraft had to rely solely upon their own RADAR systems. Once the MiGs were airbourne, they would attempt to target the larger enemy aircraft (bombers, AWACs aircraft, etc) with their air-to-air missiles.

Four of the five major surface level command posts in rebel-held territory would be heavily damaged by the enemy drone strikes and would be essentially rendered useless. Facing an unbalanced air war, rebel divisions deployed towards the northern frontier would bear the brunt of the casualties of UFE air bombing campaign. When their armored columns came under enemy attack, each unit activated their S-300 AA batteries with only limited success. Other units simply fired a heavy barrage of AA fire into the sky in an attempt to hit the enemy drones while attempting to retreat to cover.

As could be expected, the troops on the northern flatlands had nowhere to hide from the combination of drone and bomber attacks. In the course of an hour, all but 10,000 of the 42,000 troops deployed along the northern plateau were either killed or severely injured.

In what would likely be considered the most reckless and dishonorable move of the entire conflict, General Stepashin issued orders for his forces to retreat into large population centers with their equipment in order to make a stronger stand against enemy forces. Five Army Division Commanders refused to comply and ordered their forces to cease fighting, while the remaining Commanders immediately complied with the General’s orders.

The majority of the rebel forces, who had dispersed among the mountain ranges to the south, moved rapidly towards the nearby cities. Approximately 2,000 of them were killed by enemy aircraft, but thousands of troops (who were not close to the southern border at the start of the operation) managed to reach their destinations.

Two hours after the operation began, 20,000 rebel soldiers had re-deployed to the middle of Novosibirsk with mostly AA and Anti-tank weaponry. A further 5,000 soldiers surrounded the city and began to lay anti-personnel and anti-tank mines. The soldiers dispersed throughout the city and occupied streets, buildings and alleyways (especially those near residential areas).

This frightening situation was repeated in the smaller towns of Kemerovo (3,000 soldiers), Barnaul (2,500 soldiers), Biysk (1,000 soldiers), Kyzyl (3,000 soldiers) and the cities of Ulan-Ude (10,000 soldiers) and Irkutsk (10,000 soldiers). In an underground bunker in Novosibirsk, General Stepashin and his remaining core commanders carefully planned their next move.

[b]***East Ingushetia Autonomous Community (OOC: Green area to the east on the status map)***[/b]

UFE forces crossing the Marscurian-Vaulian border into East Ingushetia would only find a handful of rebel soldiers in the province. These soldiers would immediately and with oddly relieved expressions on their faces, surrender without firing a single shot. Once all 30 soldiers surrendered, they would report being deployed to the province with a group of 50 soldiers and being attacked by the Ingush separatist groups in the province.

[b]***Television broadcast by the National Salvation Council (NSC)***[/b]

Citizens of the Republic, I bring you shocking news. Several hours ago, with the complicity of the illegitimate Imperator, forces from the UFE invaded our sovereign nation. These forces are conspiring with the Imperator to impose their will on our nation. As we speak, these forces have unleashed death and destruction upon the southern provinces of our nation with little or no regard for human life.

The UFE has violated the Serene Republic’s sovereignty and territorial integrity with its unwarranted invasion. The UFE has seen fit not only to involve itself in our internal affairs, but to occupy our southern provinces as a part of their imperialist intentions in the region. We, the National Salvation Council (NSC), thoroughly condemn the UFE invasion and demand the withdrawal of all UFE military equipment and personnel from our sovereign territory. Should the government of the UFE fail to do so, there will be consequences for their actions.

Also, the NSC is pleased to announce that the former Crown Prince Yuri Zenn was apprehended while attempting to flee the country with tens of thousands of dollars in a suitcase. Accordingly he has been arrested and will face trial for his part in the Imperator’s illegal and unconstitutional actions. An arrest warrant has also been issued for Princess Yulia Zenn who was last seen entering the UFE Embassy in Sygh-Varthys. In light of this, the NSC will shortly be lodging a strong diplomatic protest to the UFE. Additionally we demand that the UFE Ambassador to the Serene Republic turn over the Princess to face trial.

[i]*End of Broadcast*[/i]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...