Fraternity (FRT) has declared war on the The Army of Mangos (AoM). In a State Of The Alliance released by Noraus on January 5, he announced their intention to officially commence hostilities against their long-term rival. This war comes as 2022 begins, and FRT pilots are already deploying south to the system of U-WLT9 in Stain. FRT have wasted no time and are already raiding into AoM held Esoteria. Noraus, perhaps learning from Vily’s historic commentary, dictated that their intent is “not to exterminate an alliance, which is impossible in EVE. We want your keepstars and ihubs dead.”
A Bloody History
The rivalry between FRT and AoM is well-known, with some of its roots tracing from the Serenity server. Yet, despite this animosity, the two have recently attempted a Non-Invasion Pact (NIP) to allow both parties to focus on other areas whilst recovering from World War Bee 2. Noraus’ post also praises AoM’s “de-facto leader”, Sabre001, for their determination in the past few months. However, the positive relations ended there; Noraus followed with a scathing assault on Fu1crum and AoM as a whole.
FRT members have always focused on their disdain for AoM, even when both alliances were allies in PAPI they would shoot at each other during fleets – sometimes with Imperium ships on grid at the same time. Therefore, the declaration of war is not a surprise. The timing, however, is.
Winter Coalition emerged strongly from World War Bee 2 (unlike other PAPI coalitions) but since August 2021, they have been under a relentless harassment campaign by Snuffed Out, culminating in a few large Titan brawls. In addition to this, tensions with their “friends” and neighbours Pandemic Horde have been heightened lately. PH & FRT are neutral to each other, share a NIP and often cooperate against common foes, however recent events have caused some diplomatic incidents between the two superpowers. In an alliance wide ping revealed on Reddit, PH leader Gobbins called out Noraus for an earlier message relating to cloaky camping and “hotdropping” within Vale of the Silent. Although tensions appear to have been calmed, FRT must wonder whether their eastern flank is as secure as they’d like it to be.
Let Battle Commence!
The first large battle of the war took place in R-ARNK, where Fraternity attacked AoM’s staging Keepstar’s armour timer. Deploying over 1000 pilots split into four Muninn fleets plus support, FRT vastly outnumbered their foe, but the defensive advantage is not to be underestimated. The fight, broadcast live on Twitch by Frost Ees OP, saw the FRT Muninns gradually move closer and closer to the Keepstar, attempting to mitigate its Vorton Doomsday and the Lances provided by AoM’s Titan flotilla. The battle was a bloody affair, with 410 of the 641 Muninns fielded by FRT destroyed.
While the Muninn brawl ensued, Fraternity sported a 70-pilot Vexor wing that attempted to keep the armour timer paused. This tactic wildly underestimated the tenacity of AoMs defence, and the T1 cruisers were quickly put to the sword by long-range Dreadnoughts. The combined DPS of AoM’s carriers, dreads, supers was too much for the FRT fleets to handle – although the timer was paused, they were making no progress on breaking the keepstar’s armour. As the call to withdrawal was given, AoM HACs and Interdictors held down as many ships as possible before the remnants escaped. The battle was a brutal affair, with FRT losing the objective and ISK war: 86bn killed to 153bn lost.
Can Mangos hold?
As for Army of Mangos, since the collapse of Legacy Coalition they have cemented themselves in Esoteria, building the small Pan-Intergalactic Business Community (PIBC) Coalition. However, since the collapse of fellow PIBC member Evictus, they are isolated and cornered between the Imperium, FI.RE Coalition, and assorted neutral alliances.
The FRT deployment to Stain could see them partner with the Stain Russian groups; Ferrata Vitrix, Good Sax, Desman Alliance et al. These groups have been reinforcing iHubs in the Stain-Esoteria border systems in recent weeks, and have also engaged in a number of fights with AoM. The geopolitical situation facing the smaller Chinese alliance is certainly precarious.
As 2022 begins, there have been a number of announcement from alliances across the game, largely preparing for deployments and the commencement of new hostilities across the map. The Imperium has not revealed the location of any upcoming deployments, and whether they will come to aid former enemy AOM against another former enemy in FRT is uncertain. Regardless of the Imperium becoming involved in this conflict or not, pilots will be viewing the border of Paragon Soul with interest. AoM may have been a PAPI alliance, but they are a far less threatening neighbour than FRT, or whoever else may move in once this conflict is over.