The events and updates listed below are listed in chronological order, as they occurred and were reported by members of various international news agencies on location in Dignania. This site, maintained by the Royal News Service of Eastern Zartania, provides a comprehensive look into the on-going struggle in Dignania. Where possible, pictures and full articles are provided.

Click here to see the personalities behind the news reports!


March News Reports

March 1, 299AP
BREAKING NEWS!!! RNS HAS RECEIVED THE FIRST REPORT FROM INSIDE THE BESIEGED DIGNANIAN CAPITAL OF MONTPELIER. RNS' OWN ALAN SMITH HAS RISKED HIS LIFE TO BRING THE PUBLIC THE TRAGIC DEATH OF THE ONCE BEAUTIFUL CAPITAL: (RNS RECEIVED THE STORY AT 10:30 AM THIS MORNING)

February 28, 299AP MONTPELIER - (Across the street from the parliament building, 11:34AM local time) For the last hour, UBD forces have been shelling the parliament building. They have brought in tanks and other wheeled artillery pieces to blast the last holdouts in the city. There is not much left of the building as fires rage on several floors. Even with the intense shelling, government loyalists continue to fire from the building. They were even able to destroy one of the tanks shelling the building. About twenty minutes ago, an anti-tank rocket was launched from one of the first story windows. The rocket stuck the tail end of the tank as it was attempting get into position. From my vantage point across the street, the tank burst into flame with a thunderclap. The tank was rocked back and forth by the explosion before it came to a stop. Several men tried to escape through the top hatch, but just as one of the men attempted to climb out of the tank, it exploded. The man was blown apart right before my eyes, and like the government soldiers around me, I didn't even wince. The violence of the last day and half has desensitized me from the horrors of war. I sit crouched behind a dresser as I watch the last act of the drama unfold before me. Anna Salyers sits in the corner listening to the thuds from the shells impacting against masonry. She pulled me out of the street last night during the UBD break through and since then we have been hiding in this third floor apartment across the street from the parliament.

To recap, since yesterday morning, the capital has been under constant attack by the UBD forces from the south. Throughout the day, the superior firepower and men had forced the government troops to retreat towards the center of the city. That changed early Saturday night, when the government troops were able to set up a strong defensive line along the Santa Rosa Parkway. The parkway runs perpendicular across the UBD's advance. The four-line road afforded an excellent field of fire for the government forces. As the UBD attempted to cross the street, they were cut down by government troops in bunkers. The UBD made several assaults across the road, but every attack was dispersed. So by 1:00 am the front had stabilized.
Sitting astride the north side of the Santa Rosa are the remnants the South Side Mall. This towering building with its above-ground parking lot provided excellent firing positions for the government troops. They were able to fire down upon approaching UBD forces using the streets that meet the parkway perpendicularly. Those streets served as funnels, affording few hiding places for the approaching UBD tanks. Every time a tank tried to advance toward the parkway anti-tank rockets destroyed it. From this strong position, government troops were able to halt the advance of the invading forces. The fighting in the southern part of the city grew less intense while they attempted to regroup and bring up heavier artillery. The government forces hoped that they could hold this position until reinforcements could be brought up and just maybe they could then have turned the tide against the UBD. But as the subsequent events were about to prove, that was not going to be the case.
The government's chance for survival was destroyed around 2:00 AM. With the suddenness of a tornado, the UBD forces attacked from the north. I have no idea how they got that far north, but I suspect they flanked the city. As you can imagine, this attack shattered the morale and effectiveness of the government troops defending the city. They had been expecting reinforcements, not a new front to defend. One moment the city was relatively quiet, and then the heavens exploded into a hail of shells. The north end of city erupted into a frenzy of noise and flame. Within two hours of the northern attack, the government line across the Santa Rosa had been breached. Everyone was in full retreat including myself. The battle became a rout as soldiers scattered to find anyway to escape. All discipline and order was left behind as officers joined men into this head-long flight. I roamed through the streets in a semi-conscious state of fear. What I remember most about last night was not the advancing UBD forces, but the eyes: the eyes of the soldiers running in terror. The eyes no longer held a human quality, but were rather like those of a panicked animal. I vaguely remember being dragged off the street into a nearby building. From there I hid with Anna Salyers until this morning and will try to post this report when it is safe. -Alan Smith, KTZ-TV

 

 
 
 
 
 
 

BREAKING NEWS!!!
 

Live from MONTPELIER - (3:35PM local time) I am Anna Salyers reporting from outside the shattered parliament building. The leaders of the UBD have called a press conference for 3:40 PM to announce the new government and its plans for the future. The fighting ending yesterday after the last government forces were defeated in the parliament building itself. Since then only sporadic fighting has been reported as UBD troops mop up isolated pockets of government troops. Thousands of UBD soldiers have been seen marching through the city heading north. The city is a mere shell of its former self. Fires rage unchecked as stunned citizens wander aimlessly around. Bodies from the battle are being picked up in trucks as tractors attempt to clear roads to let UBD forces to pass.

Wait a minute, several men have appeared from an armored personnel carrier. The soldiers surrounding the Government Plaza scream "Valdez" and "UBD" over and over as three men approach the podium erected for the press conference. The man on the left wearing the fatigues is Oscar Valdez, the man in the center is Otho Ferrier, but I don't know who the man on the right is. They're stepping onto the podium and preparing to speak. Oscar Valdez steps up to the microphone.
Oscar Valdez, head of the UBD
"Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen. I'm here to announce the creation of a new government in Dignania. After several days of valiant struggle against the fascist oppressors here in Montpelier, the heroic soldiers of the UBD have liberated the people. I proclaim from this point on that the people of Dignania will no longer live under the yoke of an oppressive government. My first act as leader of UBD is to set up a revolutionary council to determine the form of this new government. The people will be involved and make most of the decisions. But until the enemy is defeated in the north, the revolution is still in danger. So I take it upon myself to lead the UBD until the enemy is defeated. Once the liberation of Dignania is complete, the people will be free to choose how they should be governed. Until then, I will take up the cause for the common good of all our people. The council will take up such issues as land reform, punishment for those criminals who controlled the government, and the education of the masses of the true meaning of freedom. We will continue the drive north to free the people still under the yoke of the government. Until they are free, no one from the UBD will rest. At this point I would like to introduce an important member of this liberation movement. A person who, without his support, this very moment would not have been possible. His name is Albert Bester. Give him a cheer!"
The soldiers surrounding the conference are screaming and shouting as Bester rises his hand in triumph. He's approaching the microphone.
Albert Bester, head of the MCZ
"People of Dignania, Revolutionary Brothers in Arms, assembled guests. It's a pleasure to be with you here today in Montpelier as the Dignanian people embark on the road toward true freedom and equality for the people. This is a day that has been long awaited in my organization, and a day for which we have been helping to prepare your own revolutionary citizens. This day sees the eclipse of the old, oppressive government of Dignania. A government that was so corrupt in its thinking and ideology, and so corrupted by the influence of imperialist capitalism, that it actually attempted to carry out what only we true revolutionaries can do: create a government completely of the people. The Free Confederacy tried, and failed. Look east, and you will see the punishment that is now being levied upon those who would dare to assume the power that only we true revolutionaries have. Look here, and you will see the aftermath of what our power and knowledge can do in the wrong hands. When the Free Confederacy left Dignania, the government that they had forced upon your people failed, as any capitalist venture would do when unsupported by the blood, sweat, and muscle of true Patriots of the Cause. That failure led to the attempt to establish another fascist, capitalist, imperialist, oppressive regime that would eventually destroy you, your culture, and your country in order to feed its own greedy ends. That is why, with the backing, support, and training of my organization, the UBD stands before you today as liberators. They have liberated you from the forces of evil that wish to destroy you! And you should feel proud to be one of the first nations of Vexillium to experience this true freedom. You are to be congratulated! For you have reached a stage of perfection that my own homeland has yet to realize. As we speak, across the ocean, my own brethren in Eastern Zartania lay helpless, trodden over by a capitalist, despotic, tyrannical regime that has the gall to call itself one of the enlightened governments of the world. In Eastern Zartania, our people are cowed by the government, and forced to believe that they can do nothing to solve their plight. But with the help of our organization, the Movement for a Communist Zartania, Dignania is now free of a similar fate! The UBD and the MCZ, working together, have made Dignania an example for my own brethren across the ocean. To you, Dignania, I congratulate you on your victory over oppression, and your first steps on the road to true equality. To my followers in Eastern Zartania, now is the time to strike! Dignania is free. We have shown you the way. Now do what must be done to free all Zartanians from the tyrannical yoke of the king! Raise the masses! The people must learn to set themselves free from domination they have lived under for so long. Revolution is the only true path to peace and equality! Long live the Revolution!"
As Bester finishes his speech, the plaza erupts into a chorus of cheers and calls for revolution. Valdez approaches Bester, and they embrace as the brothers in arms they purport to be. Valdez approaches the microphone and beckons the soldiers to silence.
"Words well spoken my brother from Eastern Zartania. Your help is well appreciated as your organization has led the way for world revolution. I invite your organization to set up a government in exile here in Dignania and I pledge that all true Dignanian patriots will join you to free your own land from the clutches of the pig King Bruno, but before we can help, our land must first be purged of all evil. The MCZ can not fight our battle for us.
"My brothers and sisters, this is the time to unite under one cause, one banner, and one ideal. Only you and I can defeat the fascist forces now threatening our new found freedom. Do not relent, do not soften, do not go to sleep. True freedom is only assured through vigilance. So watch your fellow neighbor, co-worker and even your family to insure that they don't betray the revolution. We are the chosen and as the chosen we must lead the world to the well spring of freedom. Now go, become the whirlwind and reap vengeance against those who would prevent you from taking your rightful place in the hall of the kings. Now go and run them down, show no mercy. You are the tools of the people!"
Cheers tear through the crowded plaza again now that Valdez has paused. He's turning toward Bester, and apparently beckoning him forward. Now they're standing before the podium, with arms linked.
"My revolutionary brother Valdez is correct. Now is the time to unite under the one true Cause and fight for the liberation of the Dignanian people, so that all the world's oppressed peoples can be free and equal. But the Dignanians will not fight this battle alone! The MCZ is here to fight with you. Arm in arm, we will drive the tyranny from Dignania. As we speak, transport ships loaded with MCZ revolutionaries from around the world are landing at ports in southern Dignania with their equipment. Dignania is now the battlefront for the liberation and equality of the world. From this place we will deliver notice to the parliaments of conquerors that line has been drawn against the oppression, and we will advance that line, no matter the cost."
Arm in arm, the two leaders have stepped down from the podium and appear to be wading through the crowds in the plaza. We're trying to get a camera shot of them now. I can see them. They're in the street now, apparently marching north out of the plaza. I can hear the rumbling of heavy engines, and the ground is shaking slightly. They're out of sight now. We've lost them. But the rumbling is still there, and it sounds to be getting closer. The soldiers are screaming now. We're trying to get a better look at what's going on in the street … My God! The street is filled with at least 30 tanks and what appear to be several armored personnel carriers and trucks. We can see them now as they're passing us, heading north behind the leaders. The cheering soldiers on top of the tanks don't appear to be UBD forces. They're wearing brown camouflage instead of the UBD green, and appear to have red armbands. Wait a second. There's a truck that just passing us, two flags hanging out of it. One is a black symbol within a red triangle on a gold field: the banner of the United Brotherhood of Dignania. The other appears to be black and red with a red star and black hammer and sickle. I've never seen that before, but it's a good bet that this flag represents the Eastern Zartanian communists. The soldiers appear to be excited and jubilant, some singing as they progress down the … Hey! What are you doing? We're on the air here! No, don't do… -Anna Salyers, Montpelier Daily Press

 

 
 
 
 
 
 

March 2, 299AP

10 MILES NORTH OF CARLSBAD - (10:40AM local time) All morning, hundreds of MCZ and UBD soldiers have been traveling north to engage the fascist government forces. The morale is amazing as they shout "UBD forever" as they pass by. I don't envy those government forces who unfortunately come against these boys. I mean, I can literally see miles upon miles of road filled with glorious soldiers, tanks, and all kinds of other vehicles all heading to the front. The power is awesome. Even as I speak, I know ships filled with more soldiers and equipment arrive in the ports of Brokenburg and Mosul. The training camps here in southern Dignania are full of patriots seeking to free their country. Everyday, more men and women join the cause and if anyone continues to say that this revolution has no popular support has obviously not visited the training camps or talked to any of the patriots. Support for this revolution is universal and is continuing to grow. This army of freedom is unstoppable, and as soon as they organize, they'll drive the remnants of the old order out of the north. Once that is accomplished, the people in Dignania will finally be free to enjoy life the way it should be. -Scott Edwards, UBD Revolutionary Press

MT. DIABLO, NORTHERN ROKARIYN MOUNTAINS - (1:00PM local time) Several reporters from around the world have been gathered here on top of Mt. Diablo to listen to the first official government announcement since the fall of the capital. It is widely believed that this news conference will address the UBD threat and clarify who just is in charge of the government forces. Since the civil war began with the expulsion of the UBD leaders from the talks, the coalition of government officials and various party leaders has shown a certain lack of initiative when dealing with the armed revolt. For the first couple of days of the war, the government made few statements and seemed to have no concrete strategy to deal the UBD. When the capital fell, no word was heard about the fate or whereabouts of the leaders. In fact, until now, the government seemed leaderless and out of control. Like a ship with a without a rudder.

Yesterday, the UBD, with the support of the MCZ, declared the creation of a new government under the leadership of Oscar Valdez. The world was shocked to hear that the MCZ had been financing and assisting militarily the civil war here in Dignania. The UBD created a new government body named The People's Revolutionary Council. This council will be made up of ten Leaders of the People who will make laws and enforce them. They are also looking for world recognition as the true government of Dignania. This news conference is important, for if no credible alternative to the UBD comes forth, many countries in the world will recognize the UBD's claim and consider the old government forces as rebels. When and if this happens, all aid and support will be given to the UBD and the remnants of the government will be starved and left to die in the mountains.
Now before the conference, I will recap the military situation of the government forces. The government troops have been pushed into the Rokariyn Mountain Range. Bradford has fallen and Ladysmith is being shelled as I speak. Central and southern Dignania are under the complete control of the UBD and MCZ forces. The remaining government forces are making their stand in the Rokariyn Mountain Range. The declared strategy is to control the mountain passes, and prevent the UBD from breaking through into the northern plain. The mountains will allow the government to neutralize the 3 to 1 advantage in men and material the UBD has. The mountains will also prevent the UBD from using their superiority in tanks, artillery and aircraft. This will help … Oh, wait … it seems like the conference is about to begin. Several men are approaching the microphone. One man in particular seems to be the leader of the group. He is now preparing to address the assembled reporters:
Captain Matthew Cook, Dignanian Self Defense Force
"Ladies and gentlemen of the press, I'm here to announce the creation of a new organization to combat the UBD threat. Over the last week, a disease has overrun our country. This disease is the UBD. Their attack on the innocent people of Dignania is a crime. They refused to help form a new government and instead decided to circumvent the law and enforce their own 'will of the people.' They do not speak or represent the people. Our new organization is created to combat this threat to our freedom. The freedom to chose our form of government without the fear of war and death. We represent law and order, not chaos. I will not stand here and claim to speak for all the people, but I do claim that I will protect and serve the people. My duty, our duty, is to enable the return of the right for people to choose their lawful government through elections and law. We will hold the line against the darkness until the last man. The UBD will be punished for bringing chaos to our land, and for the crimes they have committed upon the people. They will also be punished for allowing a foreign entity in the name the MCZ into our country. This proves that the so-called UBD is, in reality, a servant of the MCZ. I announce today the formation of the Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania. Here, beside me are the leaders of the MLFLD. On my left is Dale Schumacher, then next to him is the Colonial Lance Tolken, then the Duke of Avion, then Major Dale Webster, and finally Harrison Ford, the mayor of Regina. My name is Captain Matthew Cook. Together we form a new coalition to the UBD threat, and this time we will not make the mistakes the old government did. Today we start the task of retaking our homeland. I ask for political assistance from the world. All governments of the world, we ask you to stop all support to the UBD and ask that you do not recognize them as the legitimate government. If you will not help us by providing political assistance, then we do not want your help. We do not ask for military help from most of the world because this is our fight. Stay out of it. We also ask that no country attempt to broker peace talks, because we will not accept them until the UBD disease is driven from our land. The only country I seek any help from is Eastern Zartania. We ask them for military assistance in our struggle against the UBD for two reasons. The first reason is the close relationship our two countries have and the many family connections, due to the emigration of exiles from Dignania in the past. In fact, my parents reside in Eastern Zartania. The second is to ask them to help clean up a mess that we both share: the MCZ. They are Eastern Zartanian born, so we ask that King Bruno come clean up the mess left by his own communist rabble. But now the time has come to return to the battle at hand, and begin our great campaign to free our homeland. Thank you for your attention."
Captain Cook has now turned away from the podium, and is shaking hands with each of the political leaders with him by the microphone. With nods of agreement at something said by Cook, they're beginning to walk away, back toward the troops and the front line. Exciting news from here in the Rokariyn Mountains today. To recap what just happened, Captain Matthew Cook of Dignanian Self Defense Force has announced the formation of an anti-UBD coalition. Known as the Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania, this coalition is apparently aimed at halting and reversing the UBD victories, and restoring the rightful government. Cook also called on world leaders around Vexillium to reject the UBD government established yesterday in Montpelier. In an unexpected development, Cook has also put out a call for armed intervention by the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania, as the primary backers of the UBD are Eastern Zartanians themselves. And, once again, this reporter's been had. He wasn't really a cook after all. Just an officer whose name is "Cook." An insidious plot to confuse the UBD troops and the outside world? Or just a genuine misunderstanding on the part of a certain beloved reporter? Only time will tell. -Kristoffer Henriksson, Subrata Independent Press

 

 
 
 
 
 

March 3, 299AP
BREAKING NEWS!!! THE RNS BROADCAST CENTER HERE IN IMPERIAL CITY HAS JUST RECEIVED THE OFFICIAL RESPONSE FROM THE EASTERN ZARTANIA GOVERNMENT TO THE CURRENT EVENTS IN DIGNANIA. HERE IT IS FOR OUR VIEWERS, IN ITS ENTIRETY.


On behalf of His Royal Majesty, King Bruno II, I bid greetings to the Nations of Vexillium, and to the People and Warring Parties in Dignania.

It is with great distress that we of Eastern Zartania have been watching the unfolding of events in Dignania. A civil war is not an issue to be taken lightly, and the Royal Government has been giving it all due consideration since the first days of the fighting. Since the founding of the Movement for a Communist Zartania in late 1281 (217AP), the organization has been a constant thorn in the side of our great Kingdom. They advocate the removal and execution of the monarchy, the "purging" of all aristocratic institutions, the establishment of the "dictatorship of the peasantry," and worldwide revolution. Since an assassination attempt on King Fredrik II in 1284 (220AP), the MCZ has been strictly forbidden within the Kingdom, and all attempts have been made to eradicate it from our realm. In doing so, we have exiled several thousand of its members. Apparently, these exiles have found a new home for themselves overseas.

After carefully reviewing the situation, examining the messages released by the United Brotherhood of Dignania, its MCZ supporters, and this morning's statement from the newly formed Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania, His Royal Majesty has consulted with the Royal Government, and a decision has been reached:

************************************************

OFFICIAL DECREE FROM THE IMPERIAL PALACE, AND THE KING OF EASTERN ZARTANIA
As of this day of His Majesty's reign, Wednesday, March 3, 1363, the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania hereby resolves the following in regards to the current crisis in Dignania –

1) That the Movement for a Communist Zartania (hereafter MCZ) has willfully defied the Royal Law of the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania by remaining an organization of international revolution.
2) That as such, the MCZ and its members are now subject to retribution has described under the Royal Law.
3) That the MCZ and particularly its leader, Albert Bester, have directly challenged the authority of His Royal Majesty and the Royal Government of Eastern Zartania by purposing to speak for the people.
4) That the MCZ, and in particular Albert Bester, has attempted to incite rebellion within the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania and its Possessions.
5) That as such the MCZ remains a distinct threat to the internal security of the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania and to the rest of Vexillium.
6) That prior to this point and the souring of relations last summer with the Free Confederacy of Lendian Republics, the People of Dignania and of Eastern Zartania have been only friendly toward each other, to the extent of accepting exiles from each other's countries.
7) That as such, a large number of Dignanian exiles still remain within the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania, and they are entitled to eventually return to a free homeland, undesecrated by terror and oppression.
8) That the Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania (hereafter MLFLD) has released a plea to the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania for military support in removing the common threat of the MCZ from Dignania.

These issues resolved, the Royal Government of the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania hereby takes the following actions –
1) The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania hereby officially and formally recognizes the MLFLD as the legitimate, lawful, and rightful government of the Free Republic of Dignania. Consequently, the coalition of the MCZ and the United Brotherhood of Dignania (hereafter UBD) are deemed usurpers and rebels, attempting to gain control of the state through terror, violence, and oppression.
2) The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania hereby officially accords Belligerent status to the MLFLD, the UBD, and the MCZ. All parties, and their members, will be considered full belligerents, and will be granted the standard rights of belligerent power as well as be held to the restrictions of belligerent powers.
3) HAVING RECEIVED A PLEA FOR MILITARY AID FROM THE MLFLD, THE LEGITIMATE GOVERNMENT OF DIGNANIA, AND HAVING ACCORDED ALL INVOLVED PARTIES BELLIGERENT STATUS, AS WELL AS RECOGNIZING THE MCZ AS A CONTINUED THREAT TO WORLD AND INTERNAL SECURITY, THE KINGDOM OF EASTERN ZARTANIA HEREBY OFFICIALLY AND FORMALLY ANNOUNCES THE COMMENCEMENT OF HOSTILITIES BETWEEN ITSELF AND THOSE REBEL GROUPS KNOWN AS THE UBD AND THE MCZ. The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania also firmly allies itself to the MLFLD in this fight to eradicate the MCZ threat in Dignania.
4) The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania hereby calls for the immediate suspension of all deliberations in the UNV regarding the possibility of a military intervention in Dignania. The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania considers this to be an internal matter from this point, and will brook no interference from an outside power in the prosecution of this war effort.

The resolutions and actions listed herein will become official as of 12:00 noon Zartanian Standard Time, this day, March 3, 1363.
Bruno II vun Q'Leist, King of Eastern Zartania

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This Royal Decree, drafted and signed by His Royal Majesty, was approved unanimously by the Royal Council, unanimously by the Royal Stek Assembly, and with two dissenting votes in the Royal Court of Judges. This decree is now law, and a state of hostilities now exists between Eastern Zartania and the UBD-MCZ coalition. The Royal Armed Forces have been placed on increased alert at all our facilities worldwide, and the Royal Police have been placed on maximum alert within the Kingdom. The Royal Council and the Royal Stek Assembly are currently drafting the Kingdom's initial commitments to the fight in Dignania, and that information will be released to the world later today as the issues are resolved and signed off by HRM. Again, we would like to warn all prospective travelers: the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania is now at war. More information will be released as it becomes available. We thank you for your attention in this matter, and trust that our Decree and our Laws will not be circumvented by other states.

May Honor and Glory grace the Nations of Vexillium, the Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania, and the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania for Eternity.

Sir Randall Young, K.K.
Foreign Minister, KTZ
on behalf of His Royal Majesty, King Bruno II vun Q'Leist, and with the support of all Levels of the Royal Government

ROKARIYN MOUNTAIN RANGE - (3:40PM local time) The hint of spring is in the air. The day is cool, but bright as clouds slowly drift by. The air is crisp, which is a nice change from the industrial smells from the cities and highways down below in the Central Valley. A person could be at peace here in the mountains, even the call of a bluejay only adds to the idyllic scenery. But beneath this vision of peaceful lie the tools of war and destruction.
 

I stand here in the low foothills of the Rokariyn Mountain range. Stretching over the horizon behind me is the Central Valley of Dignania. For a hundred years the Central Valley, with its rich soil, has provided the people with all the food they would ever need. The richness and productivity of the fields are well known throughout the world, but today sees a different use for them. Instead of corn and wheat growing from the rich dark soil, we find mines. Hundreds of them have been planted in the fields leading up the hills of the Rokariyn Mountains. Government troops have spent last day in a half planting them as if they were seeds. The men carefully, gently place them in the dirt. Much as a farmer would when planting corn. Only this crop won't feed anyone.
The flow of refugees has slowed to a trickle, with the only movement now coming from MLFLD troops preparing for the UBD assault. Everyone knows that it will happen soon, but when? The only UBD forces seen in the last two days have been two APCs, which were destroyed as soon as they approached the MLFLD positions. An officer near me said that the APCs were probably a scouting party. Other than that, only a few UBD jet attacks in and around the area have been reported. The jets come in, drop a few bombs and then leave. Reports have come through radio and rumor that the UBD forces are attacking the lower Rokariyn mountains southeast of this position, but no one is sure just how strong the attack is. All we can do now is wait and prepare.
Since my last report, I followed the column of refugees north towards the Rokariyn Mountains. The column followed Route 60, which would eventually lead past Ladysmith and toward Fisher Pass, one of only six passes by which people can travel through the Rokariyn Mountains. Whoever controls the passes controls access into northern Dignania. Early Tuesday, March 2, we approached the pass and I saw hundreds of government troops planting mines and setting up other defenses around the hills. Fisher Pass was carved out of the low hills to allow Route 60 through the mountain range. The road cuts through several hills before it slowly winds its way into the mountains. Explosions could be heard up ahead, which I later found out were demolition charges destroying railroad tracks and other access roads leading into the mountains. This is when I noticed that government officers were pulling soldiers out of the column and ordering them to form up on the side of the road so they could take down names and assign them to units. I decided to fall out of the column as the civilian refugees were allowed to continue to travel north through the pass.
I approached one of the officers and asked him about the government plans. Before he answered he asked to see my identification. I handed over my press pass, which seemed to satisfy him. He returned my identification and asked me how long I had been travelling with the column. I told him that I had joined the column sometime last Saturday after the UBD captured Pierre. He smiled then replied, "Long trip." I then asked him if he thought that the UBD forces would attack and if they did, would the government forces be able to stop them. The officer thought for a minute and the answered that reports had indicated that the UBD forces were busy attacking the capital, which would allow the government forces a chance to regroup. The key to stopping the UBD advance is controlling the passes through the mountains. If we can control those passes our forces can buy some time for the rest of our troops, so they can form a line of defense further into the mountains and stabilize the front. The officer paused for moment; I could see the emotion in his face. He clenched his fists together and spoke, "We must hold back these bastards as long as possible so our boys in the north can prepare a proper response. If they get passed us, then all hope is lost and I will not let that happen. I will not let that happen! I will fight them to my last breath. Oh no, they will not break through even if everyone of us is killed in the process. From hell's heart I stab at them. For hate's sake, I will spit my last breath at them before they get through." The officer suddenly paused. By the time he finished speaking his face was bright red. He now tried to recompose himself and then asked me to excuse his outburst. I asked for his name. He replied, "Major Dennis Khan."
I thanked him for his time and let him return to his duties. It was at this point that I decided that the next story will be here as the government makes their stand.  So this is why I find myself here today scanning the horizon for the first sign of UBD forces. -Sam Young, ChenTV

 

 
 
 
 
 

March 4, 299 AP
 
 

Crisis in Dignania





The RNS Headquarters: The Dignanian Civil War - (12:00PM Local Time)  As announced yesterday by Sir Randall Young, the Foreign Minister for the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania, the KTZ is now at war with the UBD and MCZ in Dignania.  The official document listed eight reasons for its declaration of war.  The first five points declared that the MCZ, under Albert Bester, poses a direct threat to internal security of Eastern Zartania.  The Royal government also charges that the MCZ, under the leadership of Bester, has broken several Royal laws such as supporting world revolution through an illegal organization, inciting rebellion, and for trying to usurp the authority of the Royal government by proclaiming that they speak for the people.   The Royal government also charges that the MCZ are guilt of advocating the death and overthrow of King Bruno II and the Royal family.  These reasons alone justify the Royal government’s decision to enter into the Civil War in Dignania.

    Points 6-8 of the Royal proclamation addressed the MLFLD’s pea for help and Eastern Zartania’s large exile population of Dignanians.  The Royal government declares that Dignanian exiles in KTZ have the lawful right to return to their homeland without the danger of being molested.  Friendly relations between Zartanian and Dignanian citizens are well known.  There are even reports that several Dignanian born citizens have fought for us during our war of independence against Terramarc.  There is even a report that indicates that the MLFLD leader, Matthew Cook, might have served with one of our guerilla units during the war. If so, this provides excellent grounds for the support of Dignanian cause.

    According to the Royal Government as announced by Sir Randall, these 8 points provide the necessary justification for a declaration of war against the MCZ and UBD.  The proclamation then lists the four immediate actions to be taken by the Royal government to start prosecuting the war.  They are listed below:

“1) The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania hereby officially and formally recognizes the MLFLD as the legitimate, lawful, and rightful government of the Free Republic of Dignania. Consequently, the coalition of the MCZ and the United Brotherhood of Dignania (hereafter UBD) are deemed usurpers and rebels, attempting to gain control of the state through terror, violence, and oppression.

2) The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania hereby officially accords Belligerent status to the MLFLD, the UBD, and the MCZ. All parties, and their members, will be considered full belligerents, and will be granted the standard rights of belligerent power as well as be held to the restrictions of belligerent powers.

3) HAVING RECEIVED A PLEA FOR MILITARY AID FROM THE MLFLD, THE LEGITIMATE GOVERNMENT OF DIGNANIA, AND HAVING ACCORDED ALL INVOLVED PARTIES BELLIGERENT STATUS, AS WELL AS RECOGNIZING THE MCZ AS A CONTINUED THREAT TO WORLD AND INTERNAL SECURITY, THE KINGDOM OF EASTERN ZARTANIA HEREBY OFFICIALLY AND FORMALLY ANNOUNCES THE COMMENCEMENT OF HOSTILITIES BETWEEN ITSELF AND THOSE REBEL GROUPS KNOWN AS THE UBD AND THE MCZ. The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania also firmly allies itself to the MLFLD in this fight to eradicate the MCZ threat in Dignania.

4) The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania hereby calls for the immediate suspension of all deliberations in theUNV regarding the possibility of a military intervention in Dignania. The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania considers this to be an internal matter from this point, and will brook no interference from an outside power in the prosecution of this war effort. “

    The four actions stated above set up the political groundwork for war.  By announcing the MLFLD as the only legitimate government, the Royal government classifies the UBD and MCZ as rebels, and as such, the MLFLD has the right to ask for foreign help.  This allows the Royal government the opportunity to offer military support to the recognized MLFLD government.  The Royal government also allied itself with the MLFLD and will begin to offer financial and military support to the organization.  Another indication that the Royal government considers the Dignanian conflict an internal matter is seen in number four.  Number four declares the “immediate suspension of all deliberations in the UNV regarding the possibility of a military intervention in Dignania.”  The king and the Royal government clearly do not want outside help from nations in the UNV.  The KTZ and the MLFLD and no one else will deal with this crisis.  Even as I speak, reports are coming into the RNS center indicating that ships are loading up with military equipment to be sent to Dignania.  Indications from military bases around Eastern Zartania tell us that our forces are on full alert and are preparing to move out.  This proclamation is only the start in our country’s entrance into the conflict in Dignania.  RNS broadcasting center will update the war mobilization as more information is made available.  Until then we would like to send our wishes and support to the men and women who find themselves tonight being sent in harm’s way.  We would also like to send our prayers to the people of Dignania who are now suffering under the rule of the UBD and MCZ.

And now, news concerning the War in Dignania:  No news reports have been received from the Dignanian capital Montpelier for the last few days.  In fact, the last report the RNS Center received was from Anna Salyers (Montpelier Daily Press) during the UBD press conference.  A cause of alarm was sounded when she was suddenly cut off for no reason.  Since then, no reporter has filed a report with the RNS center.  Upon questioning on the fate of reporters in their jurisdiction, the UBD would only state that they are safe and under protective custody due to lawlessness inside the capital of Montpelier. They went on to say that as soon as the UBD could guarantee the safety of the reporters they would be released.  Concern has been raised here in the KTZ about the safety of Zartanian born reporters.  With the declaration of war, Zartanian reporters might be subjected to retaliation by UBD forces angered by the KTZ’s entrance into the war.  We urge the UBD not to harm any reporters in Dignania, as their duty is to only report the news.  We hope that the reporters will be released soon and we here at the RNS Broadcast Center send our wishes for their safety.

Fighting in the Central Valley of Dignania:  RNS Center has no reporter on the scene, but reports coming out of Dignania indicate that heavy fighting is reported in the City of Ladysmith.  The city has a population of 70,000 and is located in the northwest part of the Central Valley.  The city is a major food shipping and processing center for the Central Valley.  The city contains large factories and gain elevators for the food processing.  Railroads ship the processed food out of Ladysmith to southern ports in Dignania such as Mosul and Badme.  From those ports, the food is shipped overseas to foreign buyers.
    When questioned about the fighting in and around Ladysmith, a UBD spokesman would only state that the city poses no threat to the UBD advance into northern Dignania.  His exact comment was, “The city of Ladysmith is of no consequence to the overall plan for the liberation of Dignania.  The city will fall whenever we decide to take it. The so-called MLFLD forces have no chance and are in fact running, like the dogs they are.  At this very moment, the UBD is preparing for the final push through the Rokariyn  Mountains.  Victory should be achieved within a week.”  The UBD spokesman’s comment can not be verified.  So the RNS can only report that fighting continues around Ladysmith and the Lower Rokariyn Mountains in the southeast.

In other news:  A unidentified source within the Royal government in Eastern Zartania has indicated that representatives from the MLFLD will meet with Royal government officials at an undisclosed location next week to discuss military and strategic considerations for the future alliance.

We now go to the RNS Weather Bureau:  Topical Storm Wanda has been reclassified as a Class four Hurricane named Heather.  For the last couple of days, the RNS Weather Bureau has been following the storm as it traveled toward Eastern Delgamia and Dignania.  March through September is the official hurricane season for the Cislendian Ocean, and every year the shores of Eastern Delgamia and Dignania are subjected to gale-force winds and torrential rain.  Hurricanes develop in the southern part of the Cislendian Ocean, and with the help of currents and wind patterns, they usually follow a circular pattern towards Eastern Delgamia and Dignania.  Heather is expected to hit land in the next 48 hours.  By Saturday night, Dignania should inundated by rain and wind.  This will affect the progress of the war as all air flights will be grounded for the next few days and ships will have to stay away from the ports to avoid being smashed against the piers.  Luckily for the MLFLD, Heather will allow them much need time to rest because no offensive operations will be able to commence during the Hurricane.

    Let me recap: Topical Storm Wanda has been classified as Hurricane Heather and is expected to make landfall in Dignania around Saturday night.  Once Heather strikes land, military operations will be affected, if not completely halted.  Communication within Dignania will also be affected, so reports coming out of the war zone might be delayed.  We will update the progress of the storm through out the day.

Back to the RNS Broadcasting Center:  As reported by our Weather Bureau, Hurricane Heather will make landfall in eastern Dignania Saturday night.  We are not sure how this will affect military operations, but the scale of the fighting should be decreased due to the difficulty of moving around in a storm.  This should give the MLFLD needed time to continue to set up a defensive perimeter in the Rokariyn Mountain Range.  The RNS Center will continue to follow the story in Dignania and also update on the war mobilization by the Royal military here in Eastern Zartania.  When more information becomes available about the prosecution of the war against the UBD and MCZ, RNS will be the first to report it. Good night
 

March 5, 299AP
 

Montpelier Convention Center - (9:30AM Local Time)  This is Scott Edwards reporting live from the Montpelier Convention Center.  The Vice-President of The People’s Revolutionary Council is going to give a speech today to UBD loyalists.  The speech is reported to be about diplomatic victories achieved by the UBD government of Dignania.  I look around the  conference hall and see hundreds of party loyalists eager for Vice-President Otho Ferrier’s speech.  Wait, the vice-president is now approaching the podium.  The room is alive with noise as everyone is on their feet clapping for Otho.  He has now reached the podium and is calling for silence.  Let’s listen in to what the great leader of the revolution has to say.

    “Good morning patriots of the Revolution.  I’m here to report a great victory for our cause on the diplomatic front.  Yesterday, during a busy day of diplomatic communications by the Foreign office of the UBD, we received two excellent pieces of information.  The Moun Republic on the Island of Djeriga has recognized us as the only legitimate government in Dignania.  Their greatness and wisdom is shown in their decision to support our cause to free our people.  They have seen their official seal to us in the name of friendship.  The UBD now will send our seal to The Moun Republic in the same gesture.  Our hope is to form a lasting friendship with the Moun Republic.  From this point on, our two nations will lead the way for world revolution and true freedom for all the oppressed people in the world.”

    Ferrier pauses and the room erupts into cheers and calls for revolution.  The emotion generated in this room is amazing.  I can hardly hear myself think with all this noise.  This is glorious, the audience is now chanting, “Long Live the UBD” and “Long Live the Moun Republic” over and over.  Vice-President Ferrier is calling for silence again.

    “Settle down for a minute patriots, for the glorious news is not over yet.  We have only been a government for a week, but already we are making nations cower at our power.  I have with me a communication from John Joseph, the Prime Minister of Christiana.  As you know, Christiana is a monarchy like the evil aggressors from Eastern Zartania.  They are peas in the pod spreading their disease of oppression to everyone in the world.  Even as I speak, the Bastard King Bruno is sending his forces to interfere with the rightful government of Dignania.  They come to support our enemies, the MLFLD. We will not let this happen and when the devils from KTZ invade our land, our glorious and righteous warriors of freedom will slay them in the thousands.  They are weak and corrupted with the ideals of the monarchy and the social elite.  They come to our land only to die.  Long live the Revolution!”

    The people are on the feet again screaming “Long Live the Revolution!”  They are cursing the evil pigs from Eastern Zartania.  If there were any KTZ soldiers here as this moment they would be ripped apart.  I only hope that they don’t discover that the Zartanian reporters are locked up at the Dignania Arms Hotel down the street.  Because if they did know, god save their souls.  Hold on a minute, Vice-President Ferrier is speaking again.

    “Men and women of the cause, I have yet to tell you of our great triumph.  As I said before, Christiana and Eastern Zartania are one in the same, but today I can report that the communication from John Joseph proves that Christiana is a weak, corrupt kingdom waiting for a revolution.  Can you imagine, we, the people of Dignania, a government for only a week, has the power to humiliate a power like Christiana. Yesterday I sent a message explaining the errors of their ways.  Instead of ignoring us, this John Joseph wrote back trying to explain how their government worked and how happy their people are in the kingdom.  The message was full of lies and half-truths, but even in lies the truth can be seen.  The fact that they have to explain their government to us, proves that we are superior and they are weak.  We have come onto the international scene with the force of a hurricane.  In fact, the hurricane that is now approaching Dignania will carry our message of freedom through revolution across the world.  We are unstoppable, and as soon as we defeat the MLFLD and those Eastern Zartanian pigs, the rewards you so richly desire will be yours.  Long live the Revolution!  Long live Oscar Valdez!”

    The audience is screaming and cheering with a force of a hurricane.  I haven’t seen this much excitement since the last Monday, when the UBD declared itself the government of Dignania.  I feel sorry for the enemy when this gale force hits them.  This is Scott Edwards, UBD Revolutionary Press, reporting from the Convention Center in Montpelier.
 

No-Look Pass northwest Rokariyn Mountains (1:30AM local time)  “I’m reporting one mile north of No-Look Pass here in the Rokariyn Mountains.  MLFLD forces are busy setting up defensive positions in and around the hills here.  Hundreds of soldiers and civilians are digging trenches and bunkers.  A few feet to my left, a 105mm howitzer is being set up.  The crew officer told me that his gun is one of six pieces that are deployed in and around No-Look Pass.  He told me that the reason why the guns are kept apart is in case of an air attack. This precaution makes sure that all the guns are not destroyed together.  Instead, maybe only one gun would get hit.   The guns might be separated in various places around the pass, but they have been presighted to fire on the same area, the road leading into No-Look Pass and the Rokariyn Mountains.

    The road leading into the mountains has been wired to blow just in case the UBD forces make it past the front line defenses.  The tension and urgency is felt when walking among the soldiers.  They know that if they fail to keep the UBD from entering the mountains, then all hope is lost.  I can see it in their eyes, they will fight to the last man.  I feel sad, for I know that these men and women are outnumbered 3 to 1 in everything from men to tanks.  Supplies and ammunition is in short supply.  At least a quarter of the men deployed here are untrained farmers and city workers, but don’t ever say they are not brave.  Some don’t even have rifles and must use pitchforks to fight, but fight they will, even though they know that the chances of survival are slim.

    There are two standing orders from the MLFLD headquarters.  The first order: all soldiers must pick up and take back to their lines any enemy equipment they can carry.  The second order: there is no retreat or surrender, die where you stand.  When asked about the orders from headquarters, the soldiers respond that it is their duty to die for their country.   They all have faces of stone, but I know underneath, they are scared just as much as I am.  I look south towards the Central Valley.  I see the dark clouds heading our way.  I see flashes here and there within the clouds and wonder if they are lightning flashes or UBD artillery pieces.  I wonder how the MLFLD forces are fairing in Ladysmith.  I hear that they are putting up one hell of a fight.  They have already given the defenders here in the Rokariyn Mountains time to prepare at the cost of their lives.  Those clouds signal the approaching hurricane, but it also signals the approach of the UBD, and that is what scares me more.  Kristoffer Henriksson,Subrata Independent Press, reporting from No-Look Pass in Dignania”
 

March 6-8 299AP
 

THE RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

THE WEATHER BUREAU: Hurricane Heather made landfall in Dignania on Saturday night.  The country was hit will 80mph winds and intense rainstorms.  Power and communications were affected over the weekend as everyone waited the storm out in shelters.  All airborne traffic was grounded.  No civilian or military aircraft were allowed to fly for at least three or four days.  Ports around Dignania were not taking ships as the twenty-foot waves prevented any supply ships from docking.  Several tornadoes were reported in southern Dignania.  The process of the war has been interrupted as swollen rivers and power outages prevented the UBD forces from reinforcing the northern front.  No report was filed from Dignania throughout the hurricane.  The Weather Bureau’s radar indicated that Heather moved offshore Sunday night and would then move out into central Cislendian Ocean and lose its power.  Over the next couple of days, Dignania will be shrouded in clouds with several rainstorms up and down Dignania.  The miserable weather should move off shore by Wednesday and sunshine and clear skies will return by Thursday or Friday.
 

Tuesday March 9, 299AP
 

RNS BROADCAST CENTER - (Message from Sir Young, Foreign Minister of the KTZ: 12:52AM Local Time)

On behalf of His Royal Majesty, King Bruno II, I bid greetings to the Nations of Vexillium.

    This message is being sent to all Eastern Zartanian diplomatic missions, and to the UNV, so that
the rest of the world may be made aware of the current status of the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania. As of last Thursday, a joint Imperial Naval taskforce centering around the aircraft carrier HMIS Warbird and the battleship HMIS Imperial City departed the Bay of Merite enroute to Haddock Cove and eventually to Dignania. The exact number and names of ships are, of course, classified at this time. However, we can say that the 34th Regiment Royal Infantry is currently enroute as well. The supply convoy which left Claw Anchorage last week is still enroute to northern Dignania, and should arrive on schedule. A naval taskforce built around the aircraft carrier HMIS Bird-of-Prey has just completed its journey from Claw Anchorage to the Bay of Merite to replace HMIS Warbird. HMIS Bird-of-Prey brought with it the 17th Regiment Royal Mechanized Infantry to replace the 34th Regt. Diploma!

    Talks are currently underway in Haddock Cove between representatives of the Eastern Zartanian Royal Government and the Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania.  These talks aim to resolve the fine differences between our two governments concerning the exact nature of the conflict in Dignania and our role. As promised, 4 long-range escort fighters provided cover for the MLFLD airplane during its trip to Haddock Cove. Approximately 30 minutes after take-off, two hostile fighters were picked up inbound on radar. Two Eastern Zartanian fighters broke formation to investigate and engage if necessary. Upon detecting a positive missile lock from one of the approaching UBD fighters, the lead Eastern Zartanian plane fired one air-to-air missile, which was purposely detonated early as a warning shot. The two UBD fighters withdrew from the area, and the rest of the flight was uneventful. Following the latest announcement from the Free Confederacy, the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania has dispatched a destroyer and two frigates!, plus several hundred soldiers, from Haddock Cove to take possession of the islands of Noteraland. ETA is 23:00 Tuesday night local time. At that time, the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania will fully take military possession of Noteraland. As we have promised before, the local indigenous population will be treated with utmost respect, and Noteraland will be incorporated as a territory of Eastern Zartania with a future option to become a full-fledged stek of the Kingdom.  Our expedition to take possession of Zartanian Glaciaria is still enroute, and is expected to make landfall within the week. Some small difficulties have been encountered concerning the vast amount of ice in the southern polar region, but the expedition commander expects the ice breakers to have cleared the way by sunrise. Once again, I would like to echo the sentiments expressed previously by His Royal Majesty: The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania deplores the loss of life in the recent downing of the Christiana airliner off Rosardan. While we mourn and attempt to bring those responsible to justice, we are also very much relieved that His Majesty, King Edward II, is safe. At this time we would also like to thank the Republic of Ordland, the Principality of Rosardan, the Sempervirens Republic, the Kingdom of Christiana, and the Ferratus Directorate for their support of our war effort in Dignania and/or their neutrality in this affair. We wish to echo the call of our friends from Ferrata: please do not get involved in this fight. This is between our Kingdom, the MLFLD, and the UBD-MCZ coalition. If any state wishes to actively support our cause, please contact our Ministry of Foreign Relations. This concludes the latest update on the status of the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania.

             May Honor and Glory grace the States of Vexillium for Eternity.

             Sir Randall Young, K.K.
             Foreign Minister, KTZ
             on behalf of His Royal Majesty, King Bruno II vun Q'Leist
 

In the mountains somewhere east of the Montpelier - (10:00PM Local Time) This is Sergei Gostov reporting from a cave somewhere in the Witzleben mountain range which runs west from the outskirts of Montpelier to the border with Novoyoakes.  These old mountains are shrouded in myth and legend.  For centuries, tales of witches and monsters have scared children and entertained adults.  The whole range is clothed with evergreen, oak, and all kinds of other trees. The forest of green and brown bathe the landscape with a semi-darkness throughout the day.  The rocky terrain filled with ravines, gullies, and riverbeds adds to the illusion of loneliness and entrapment. Thick shrubs and bushes cover the landscape.  In several places a person can only see a few feet in front of them.  Shadows play tricks upon people as they enter the forested mountains.  Hiding places are everywhere and trails are few and far in between.  This is an ideal place for a war.  The Witzleben Range was a national park for tourists looking for a good time hiking or camping, but today is filled with a new kind of monster.  This monster is not here to entertain, but rather to kill.  To kill the UBD and all the people who support them.  The mountains might not be alive with witches or trolls, but it is alive with partisans.

    Since my last report on February 27, I witnessed the battle for Montpelier between UBD and government forces.  I remember that night when the UBD broke in from the north.  The panic and chaos ran supreme as everyone attempted to escape the oncoming horde.  Even I was unable to escape from the panic.  I look back and see flashes of blinding light and blurred scenery.  I see myself running with the government soldiers out of the city and into the forest.  As if in a dream, I ran through the bushes and branches like a madman.  Nothing was clear or in focus.  Conscious thought was replaced by an animal’s instinct for escape.  I blindly ran throughout much of the night before I passed out from exhaustion around dawn.

    The next thing I remembered was being awakened by a group of men.  Laying on my stomach covered in dirt, I turned over and stared at the men who disturbed me from my slumber.  The sun was just over their shoulders so I could not see their faces or uniforms, but I did see the outline of rifles.  I immediately tried to run.  With a leap, I was up, but a swift kick in the butt sent me flying to the ground again.  I curled up into a ball and pleaded not to be killed.  One of the men bent down and told me to get up and not to worry.  As soon as I picked myself off the ground and got a good look at the men, I saw that my fear was unjustified.  The group before me was made up of government troops with a few civilians intermixed.  That happened over a week ago.  Today, I find myself reporting on the partisan activities behind the enemy lines here in the Witzleben Mountains.  For over a week I have followed this one band as they raided UBD convoys and ambushed patrols.  This group of twenty-five is run by a man named Michael Garibaldi.  He was a lieutenant with the government forces in Montpelier until the UBD forces broke through.  Afterwards he made his way with a few troops under his command to the Witzleben Mountains.  This is when he found me cowering in the dirt.  He instantly remembered me from a press conference several days before the civil war started and asked if I wanted to tag along, and since no other saviors had made an appearance I decided to accept the offer.

    Since then, I have followed this group of rebels as they evaded UBD patrols, attacked targets when they had the ammo, and otherwise make a nuisance of themselves.  In between raids and evading, the group sleeps in caves or gullies.  They hunt deer or squirrels whenever they get the chance, or they steal food from markets or UBD transports.  Since the time I teamed up with the group, five people of joined up while three have been killed.  If any member becomes wounded and can not move the unwritten rule is that you shoot them so that they can’t be tortured for information about the group.  As I said before, several civilians have joined the group.  A couple of them are criminals who enjoy this type of raiding, but most were chased from their homes by the UBD forces.

    Rumors and reports of UBD mass killings have filtered through the partisan grapevine here in the Witzleben Mountains, but as of now I cannot verify that.  The group has met with several other groups of rebels looking to avoid, or fight, the UBD.  During such meetings, Garibaldi parlays with the other leaders for information, food, or ammo.  Through our travels over the last week, I have seen several camps of refugees in the gullies and ravines.  We pass by the camps for the most part because, as Garibaldi says, “Those camps are full of death, either disease and starvation will get them or the UBD patrols will exterminate them.”  I was shocked by his callousness and protested that we should help them.  He responded by saying the group has nothing to spare and nowhere to take them.  He went on to say, “If you look at their faces you can tell they have given up and are waiting to die.  We haven’t given up.  People are going to die, and there is nothing we can do but fight back against those who made this happen.”

    Michael Garibaldi declares himself a straightforward individual.  He likes motorcycles and rugby, but hates formal situations such as working in an office or being part of the jet-setting group.  He calls himself a groundpounder, a gropo, from the old army, and says that the only reason why he was made a lieutenant was because he knows how to fight.  He is informal with his troops and allows no one to call him “lieutenant.”  He is built like a bear, which, with his bald head, gives the impression of him being made of granite.  The members of the rebel group admire him and would follow him until the ends of Vexillium.  He tries to take care of them, and only asks in return is that they fight and never give up until the UBD is driven out.  Whenever the UBD are mentioned, Garibaldi clenches his fists and calls them all kinds of words that would make a child run home for mother.  I must admit that after spending a week following him and his group I admire him and even find myself liking him.

    Last weekend during the storm, the group huddled in a cave as the wind and rain poured down upon the Witzleben mountains.  The trees swayed back in forth as branches crashed down due to the force of the storm.  Once that storm passed, the group traveled further into the mountains in an attempt to avoid the increasing UBD patrols.  Yesterday we came upon a deserted cabin in among the trees.  Upon a search of the cabin, I found a battery powered radio transmitter.  It was a godsend, for it allows me to make reports to the outside world.  I talked to Garibaldi about making radio reports to the outside world about the partisan fight behind the lines.  He thought about it and asked several members of the group, and they agreed that it was a good idea.  The conditions were that I can only stay on the air for about twenty minutes, and whenever I make a report the group must immediately leave.  I also must vary my transmission times and never transmit more then twice a week.  Well my time is about up, this is Sergei Gostov RNS reporting from the Witzeben mountains.
 

March 10, 299AP
 

Downtown Ladysmith - (1:15PM Local Time) This is Scott Edwards reporting from Main Street in downtown Ladysmith.  The liberation of the city was finally completed early yesterday morning.  Once the shooting had stopped, the citizens of Ladysmith came out of their shelters and greeted the UBD forces as saviors.  Men, women, and children came out to cheer.  They offered wine and bread to the soldiers moving through the city.  For these glorious patriots to give up their meager food supply is a true testament to the righteousness of the UBD cause.  Fighting was heavy in some areas of the city, but as soon as UBD troopers entered the city in force, the cowards from the MLFLD immediately ran.  The citizens report that they have never seen such a display of lawlessness as when the MLFLD troops fled north.  They looted the stores and homes on their way out of the city.  They took everything they could carry from kitchen sinks to children’s dolls.  There are even reports that several MLFLD soldiers murdered innocent citizens on their way out of the city.  This news confirms the base evilness of the MLFLD and its supporters.  The sooner our patriots drive them out of the country, the better. Scott Edwards, UBD Revolutionary Press, reporting from Ladysmith.

THE RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

Central Valley - (3:30 Local Time) Reports are coming into the Broadcast center that UBD and MCZ troops are preparing for a major offensive in the Rokariyn Mountains.  Large concentrations of men, artillery, and tanks have been seen outside of Ladysmith and Bradford heading north.  All indications seem to point to a coordinated attack on MLFLD positions in the mountains at any time.
 
 

March 11, 299AP
 

THE RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

The Central Valley - (3:00PM Local Time) Reports of the UBD and MCZ buildup in the Central Valley continued today.  Several Dignanian citizens telephoned and faxed in information concerning the movement of troops and tanks north towards the Rokariyn Mountains.  The highways leading north are said to be choked with UBD forces.  Air attacks against MLFLD positions in the mountains have been intense.  Bombers and air-to-ground attack aircraft have been seen strafing the hills leading into mountains.  No word yet on damage or casualties.  Neither the UBD or MLFLD have commented on the buildup, but the clear indications are that the UBD will launch a new offensive any day now.  When more information is known about the buildup, RNS with bring it to you.

In Other News: No word yet from the reporters being held captive in the Dignanian capital of Montpelier.  Several countries have complained to the UBD that their reporters are being held against their will, including the RNS reporter Alan Smith.  The UBD will only say that they are under protective custody until the fighting has died down.  Officials from the Royal Government of Eastern Zartania are attempting to secure the release of the reporters before UBD and KTZ forces become fully engaged.  The fear is that the hostages might be killed once Eastern Zartania becomes involved.  Until their release, RNS extends its heartfelt hope to all the families of the reporters that they will get out alive.

News Coverage in Dignania: There is a widespread news blackout in all the UBD and MCZ controlled areas.  From the Central Valley to the southern most tip of Dignania, no independent report has been received.  Outside telephone and radio communication has been cut off.  Information about the UBD activities in their controlled areas is spotty at best.  The only exception was the sudden report from RNS’ own Sergei Gostov from the Witzeben Mountains in southern Dignania.  We only hope that he will be able to send more reports over the next few weeks.  But besides him, an iron curtain of silence has descended over most of Dignania.  Luckily, MLFLD commanders have allowed reporters access to the part of the country they control.
 

March 12, 299AP
 

BREAKING NEWS!!!!

One mile northeast from the Trinity Passes in the Lower Rokariyn Mountains - (10:00AM Local Time)
{the report is at times drowned out by the sounds of war.  Gunfire, shells, and yelling interrupt much of the transmission} This is…Doug Jarmen reporting from a slit trench about… a…. a mile from the Trinity Passes!  The surrounding terrain is alive with fire!  I can’t see much through…smoke and fire, but there is one hell … battle going on all around me!  OH GODD!!{A large explosion interrupts}…. Sorrrry{muffled voice)! A shell just landed a few yards… away and covered me in dirt.  The bullets are whizzing by.  I can hear them….  Like angry bees! {The sound of an oncoming shell is heard over the transmission and then lands with a big thud} Ah,…. please no more!!  UBD forces…attack this…Oh, not another ONE!!!!{Another deafening explosion}
{For several minutes only heavy breathing is heard over the transmission, a machinegun rattles in the background}

    {A weak voice, near panic continues} The fighting has been…. Uh…. Terrible!  As I…said before, I can’t see much except for a…. yards.  I do….{A heavy breath is taken as he attempts to collect himself} see…. a MLF…{the word dies in his mouth} bunker a few yards from me!  Before the battle…I seem to remember….{he pauses as the gunfire suddenly intensifies} three men manning a heavy machinegun inside!…Now….I only see…..Uh…silhouettes in the smoke!  I see the muzzle flash though!  It’s so dark!!!….  OH GOD, MY EYES!!! {The reporter is drowned out as an intense explosion is heard really close by}…AAARRGGHH!
    So…some kind of rocket just hit…hit the bunker!!!  My eyes…they hurt!!  Oh, gee,…god!!!  STAY AWAY FROM ME!!!{Incoherent screams continue for several minutes}
The..thhe..the man{he starts to cry} from…. . the bunker was on fire!! He…MELTED before…my eyes!…{Doug stops talking and only his sobs are heard.  The gunfire intensifies even more; yelling is now heard over the gunfire. The sound of bodies slamming into each other now enters into the transmission. It sounds like hand to hand combat}

    {The sound of several men running and shouting nearby is heard.  Someone stops near where Doug is hiding.  A loud voice other than Doug’s is heard.}  Move down the hill before they can regroup!  SGT. Move them down in parallel formation so we can flank the next hill over!!… pleassee…(Doug’s voice) don’t kill me!!  RATATATAT!!{The sound of an automatic rifle firing close by, drowns out all other noise.  The transmission then dies.}
 

THE RNS BROADCAST CENTER - (Silence in the studio) Oh sorry…..That was…. Doug Jarmen reporting near the Trinity Passes in Northeastern Dignania.  The Trinity Passes make up the three most eastern entrances into the Rokraiyn Mountains from the Central Valley.  The passes are about four miles apart from each other and provide an excellent route into northern Dignania.  Military analysts here at RNS had speculated that the UBD and MCZ new offensive would be directed at these passes.  With the relatively low mountainous terrain, the area is a natural avenue of attack.  The question now is how long can the MLFLD forces hold out and will there be any MLFLD forces left for the Eastern Zartanian troops to help?  These questions and others we cannot solve here in the studio, but we will continue to update the public on the course of the new UBD attack.

    To recap: Doug Jarmen probably gave his life to bring the world the first report on the new UBD offensive in northern Dignania.  The fighting seemed to begin about five hours ago before the sunrise in Dignania. The heaviest fighting is centered on the Trinity Passes in the Lower Rokariyn Mountains.  Reports have also indicated that the UBD is attacking up and down the rim of the Rokariyn Mountains looking for a way in.  No word yet on the progress of the attack or the number of casualties.  We will continue to update the course of the war throughout the day.
 

March 13, 299AP
 

THE RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

The real situation in Ladysmith - (1:23PM Local Time)The world heard Scott Edwards’ report from Ladysmith in Dignania on March 10.  Since then, several sources in and out of Dignania have come forward to offer another perspective on the battle for Ladysmith.  They report that the city was not captured without a fight, but in reality, UBD and MLFLD forces fought a weeklong battle for possession of the city.  The fighting was said to be intense with heavy casualties on both sides.  The fighting even continued through the hurricane.  Much of the city was destroyed as MLFLD troops fought for every house and building. 
Early reports indicate that the strongest resistance was centered inthe food processing plants and grain elevators.  In fact, people using cell phones and faxes within the city state that fighting in some parts of the city is still continuing.  The MLFLD defense of the city gave their forces the needed time to prepare positions in the north.  Almost certainly without the heroic defense of Ladysmith by MLFLD soldiers, UBD forces would have rolled through the Rokariyn Mountains.

    These sources also report that the MLFLD forces did not commit any wholesale looting or killing in the city.  They say if there was any killing, it was committed by the UBD.  There also seems to be a lack of evidence to the joyous reception received by the UBD.  Most sources indicate that the people stayed indoors and didn’t venture out.  These contradictions in Scott Edwards’ reporting has giving rise to the opinion that he is only a mouthpiece for the UBD.  All further reports from him will be aired on RNS, but disclaimers will now give warning that his facts could be biased toward the UBD.
 

Defensive positions around Fisher Pass - (4:13PM Local Time) A curious quiet has overtaken the battlefield below me.  Smoke slowly rises from the valley floor.  From my position, several tanks and APC’s are seen burning in and around the fields just before the hills leading into the Rokariyn Mountains, the result of a nasty little surprise planned by Major Khan.  The vehicles met their doom yesterday morning as they attempted to rush the pass.  Unfortunately for them, they were caught in crossfire from the hills surrounding the pass and a hunter-killer squad in a farmstead a mile from the pass.  Major Khan informed me afterwards that the initial plan was to convince the UBD commanders that Fisher Pass was easy pickings.  The idea was for them to rush in with their armor in an attempt to grab a quick victory.  The plan worked.  Last Wednesday, Khan ordered a hunter-killer group of twenty men into the farmstead.  They dug secret hiding places to avoid detection and waited for the enemy.  By Thursday, UBD forces claimed the farmstead for themselves.  No shooting was heard so the plan must have been still intact.  Next came the opening number for the battle for Fisher Pass.  I will try to relate the morning’s battle as best as I can.

    Early Friday morning in the predawn darkness, UBD batteries opened up with an intense barrage.  For about twenty minutes, the hills and ridges surrounding Fisher Pass were pounded with high explosives.  Next came the low flying attack jets dropping napalm. The liquid fire turned night into day as several acres of land and men burned. Major Khan ordered his batteries to keep silent.  Once the shelling stopped, quiet descended over the battlefield.  MLFLD forces prepared for the attack.  Trenches were manned and machineguns aimed.  A pair of anti-tank batteries just below me position loaded their breeches with shells.  The waiting game was on.  The quiet allowed me to see the brilliant flashes and hear the thuds of what I thought at the time was the UBD attack up and down the Rokariyn mountains.  Suddenly, heavy motors were heard echoing from the darkness due south.  I couldn’t see any of the vehicles, but I could hear them.  With every passing second, I waited for the explosion of light and sound.  My heart was pounding.  I carefully peered over the sandbags to have a look at the battlefield, but I only saw darkness. Then several thuds indicated the mortars were launching their flares and then the world turned up side down.  My eyes were momentarily blinded as the initial streaks of light and explosions burned my retinas.  Once my vision cleared, I watched with fascination the little drama playing out before me.  I felt detached from my surroundings as if I was watching a play or movie.  The streaks of lights were all I saw as rockets flew across the night sky heading toward their intended victim.  Tracer bullets filled the air, like fireflies out for a bit of night air.  The sound and fury of the battle bled into one tremendous noise.  A flash: there went a tank!  An APC goes up next as it attempts to cross the open ground.  It was a game.  Who can spot the next puff of light? Wait there is another one!  It was hard to imagine that each puff of light meant that men were dying, but dying they were.  Silhouettes of men were seen among the flames.  The UBD tanks fought back, but had no way of knowing whom to attack.  Streaks of fire could then be seen coming from the farmstead as they reached out to find a victim.  The trap had been sprung.  For another thirty minutes, the streaks and flashes invaded the darkness.  Within five minutes of the ambush, UBD artillery batteries laid fire down upon the hills, but that only strengthened the MLFLD troops.  By the time the sun had crawled its way in the sky the first attack was defeated and the UBD forces were seen retreating, but they would be back.  The morning light revealed macabre scenery of death and destruction.  There were about thirty vehicles burning down in the plain.

    Since yesterday morning, UBD forces have been attempting to push their way through Fisher Pass and into the Rokariyn Mountains, but so far MLFLD forces have repulsed every attack.  UBD were able in a predawn attack this morning capture the first hill leading into the pass, but were immediately pinned down and haven't moved since.  MLFLD forces have an excellent field of vision over the northern Central Valley.  The shelling and air attacks have been intense throughout the day.  Major Khan is worried that his position around the Fisher Pass could be flanked either from the north or the south.  If that happens, He will have to abandon the Pass to the UBD and retreat north. Sam Young, Chen TV, reporting from Fisher Pass in Dignania.

 
 

March 14, 299AP
 

RNS Evening News Hosted by Josh Macgregor(5:00PM Local Time)

Macgregor: "Good evening ladies and gentlemen.  Tonight, our cover story is the continuing drama of war and destruction in Dignania.  Sunday marks the third day of the UBD offensive against MLFLD forces in the Rokariyn Mountains.  The fighting has been intense.  Reports from the battlefield indicate that casualties are high on both sides.  RNS military analysts confirm that the situation is deteriorating for the MLFLD.  The Trinity Passes fell into UBD hands on Saturday leaving the MLFLD’s left flank in danger of collapsing.
    Even as I speak, UBD forces are driving through the Lower Rokariyn Mountains toward the port city of Demieville.  If the UBD capture this city, the MLFLD left flank will be wide open to attack.  The UBD could then drive up the north coast of Dignania and cut off the MLFLD.  Thus leaving them trapped in the Rokariyn Mountains.  The MLFLD centerline of defense based around Fisher Pass is holding for now even after repeated assaults by UBD forces.  Sam Young’s report yesterday from Fisher Pass provided the public an excellent look into the UBD offensive.  And now, we go live to Kristoffer Henriksson of the Subrata Independent Press reporting from the Rokariyn Mountains in Dignania."

Kristoffer Henriksson: "Thank you Josh.  I’m standing here on the side of Route 20 leading into the Rokariyn Mountains.  About ten miles south of here is No-Look Pass. Yesterday afternoon, the UBD was finally able to break through into the Pass, but they didn’t get far.  The numerous hills, ravines, and ridges provided excellent defensive positions for the MLFLD.  Every hill they took only revealed another one filled with MLFLD soldiers.  The UBD advance has been slowed to a crawl, but they are still advancing.  Their overwhelming numbers are just too much for the MLFLD soldiers to defend against.  The terrain and the lack of roads help negate some of the UBD’s superiority in numbers, but this can go so far.  Even now, I can hear the shelling and gunfire indicating that the front line is only a few miles south from here.
    As you see behind me, trucks filled with MLFLD soldiers are traveling south to take up positions against the UBD.  Just across the highway from me an anti-aircraft battery scans the sky for UBD fighters. The UBD have control of the skies and terrorize MLFLD forces trying to move along the roads.  Several points along Route 20 are lettered with burnt out MLFLD vehicles that were destroyed by air attacks.  Yesterday, MLFLD fighters attempted to drive off the UBD planes.  The sounds of jet engines and explosives filled the sky as UBD and MLFLD fighters fought for control of the sky.  Puffs of smoke could be seen here and there, but there was no way to tell who go shot down.  The attacks must not have been successful because UBD planes returned today to continue their assault on the MLFLD forces.
    Earlier today, MLFLD engineers began placing explosives along Route 20 and in the cliffs which surround the highway.  The explosives will destroy the road and slow the UBD advance just in case they are able to break through.   This Kristoffer Henriksson reporting from Dignania."

Macgregor: "Thank you Kristoffer for your report, we wish you luck in Dignania.  In other news, countries from around Vexilluim continue to call for the halt of the fighting in Dignania, but so far, neither side shows any sign of stopping.  The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania continues to call on all nations to stay out of war. There are also unconfirmed reports that place a Zartanian naval task force off the coast of Dignania.  When asked, the Royal Government neither confirms nor denies these reports.
    The military buildup in Eastern Zartania proceeds as soldiers prepare for war.  Warehouses are filled with military equipment earmarked for Dignania.  The economy is on a full war time footing.  Factories are now working on 24-hour shifts trying to build the tools of war.  The Royal government has also given the public warning that rationing of certain items such as rubber and gas could come into effect depending on the length and intensity of the war effort in Dignania.  No word yet from the Royal Government on the exact size of the military mission being sent to Dignania.  The government would only confirm that it would be a sizable force.  Well, we are out of time.  This is Josh Macgregor RNS, thank you for your time and good night."
 
 

March 15, 299AP

RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

The War Situation in the Rokariyn Mountains in Dignania(2:00PM Local Time) In the fourth day of the UBD offensive, MLFLD forces are being overwhelmed and are falling back all along the battlefield.  As of 12:00 this afternoon, all six passes leading into the Rokariyn Mountains have been captured by the UBD.  The fighting is heavy all along the front and the UBD is threatening to break through the MLFLD line in the Lower Rokariyn Mountains near the ocean.  They have already crossed the Pascal River and should be reaching the foothills leading into the northern plain in a day or two.  If the UBD can achieve a break through there, the war in Dignania could be over before Eastern Zartanian forces can arrive.
    Overall, the MLFLD has put up a heroic defense against overwhelming odds.  They have come up against forces three times their size without losing their fighting spirit.  Reports from the battlefield reveal the tenaciousness of the defenders.  Even with shortages of weapons, ammo, and supplies, the MLFLD have offered the UBD a creditable challenge over the control of Dignania.  The men of the MLFLD continued to fight even when left only with pitchforks.  They fought for even inch of rock and soil of the Rokariyn Mountains.  They continue to fight now even when their cause looks to be lost.
 

BREAKING NEWS!!!!

A communiqué from MLFLD leader Matthew Cook has just been forwarded
to the RNS Broadcast Center - (4:00PM Local Time)

Dear Fellow Soldiers and Greetings to Vexillium,

    Today finds us at the crossroads of our struggle to free Dignania from the tyranny of the UBD. When we took up arms against the UBD over three weeks ago, we knew the road to freedom would be long and difficult, but our cause was just and our purpose noble.  With steadfast hearts, we met the enemy and he was ours.  No longer would the UBD soldiers look past us as if we were nothing.  We stood up and made them take notice.  They took notice when the heroes in Ladysmith fought for every house and building for over a week; thus allowing the rest of us time to prepare.  They took notice when Major Khan destroyed two Regiments at Fisher Pass four days ago.  They are taking notice now, as the MLFLD fights for every hill and valley in the Rokariyn Mountains, but this might not be enough.  I ask each and every soldier to give whatever he or she has left inside and make the UBD pay for every inch of ground they take and remember we fight for a dream. A dream that sees our families free to grow and prosper. A dream that allows mankind the right to chose his destiny without interference.  We dream of a free Dignania.  Even now in our darkest hour, the dream is still alive. I promise you, that I will be right there along your side fighting and dying with you.  We will not give in until the last man, woman, and child is free from the clenches of the UBD.
    In honor of the fallen heroes, I formally announce the creation of a defensive line running from the border of Novoyoakes to the ocean.  This defensive line will run through the heart of the Rokariyn Mountains along the Solitude and Pascal Rivers. This line will be called Ambrosio Line.  The line is named after a farmer in the Central Valley who refused to give up his land to the UBD forces.  For over two days, he kept the UBD pinned down around his house and it wasn’t until the UBD brought in artillery that he was finally killed.  We honor him with the Ambrosio Line and now we must honor ourselves by defending it to the last man.  I wish you luck and God bless.

General Matthew Cook
Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania
 
 

BREAKING NEWS!!!!

RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

Port city of Demieville(10:35PM) We have just received word that the Dignanian port city of Demieville has come under attack from UBD ground forces.  The breakthrough occurred over an hour ago.  No word yet on the scale or seriousness of the breakthrough.  This development puts into question the strength of the Ambrosio Line.  If the UBD can capture the city, they can roll up the MLFLD’s left flank and destroy them. When more is known about the UBD breakthrough the RNS Broadcast Center will report it.
 
 

March 16, 299AP

BREAKING NEWS!!!
 

The Haddock Cove Treaty signed - (3:00AM Local Time)

On behalf of His Royal Majesty, King Bruno II, I bid greetings to the Nations of Vexillium.

    It is our profound pleasure to report to you all this morning that the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania has finally concluded a treaty with the Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania, representing the rightful government of Dignania. The Treaty of Haddock Cove was negotiated last week in the Eastern Zartanian colony of Haddock Cove, and was signed Sunday afternoon. The treaty was quickly ratified byboth governments, and is now in complete effect.  You may view the treaty in its entirety below.
 

    This treaty has now formally and officially cemented the close friendship and military cooperation between the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania and the MLFLD in Dignania. This treaty, having been duly ratified, is considered to be Royal Law within the Kingdom and all its possessions.

May Honor and Glory grace the Nations of Vexillium for Eternity.

Sir Randall Young, K.K.
Foreign Minister, KTZ
on behalf of His Royal Majesty, King Bruno II vun Q'Leist
 
 

The Haddock Cove Treaty

*******************************************************************************************

         TREATY OF ALLIANCE & COOPERATION
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As of 12:00 midnight immediately following the exchange of Ratifications of this treaty, the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania and the Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania (hereafter refered to as MLFLD), recognized as the legitimate acting government of the Free Republic of Dignania, desirous of Friendly and Beneficial relations between and with each other; His Royal Majesty having appointed as Minister Plenipotentiary Melissa Rust, Deputy Foreign Minister of said Kingdom, and the Leader of the MLFLD having appointed as Commissioner Plenipotentiary Harrison Ford, Mayor of the City of Kasama of said Free Republic; hereby agree to enter into a Mutual Understanding and Alliance upon the following provisions:

----------------------------
Article I Recognition
----------------------------

    The Signatories to this treaty hereby formally and officially recognize the Independence of the other nation, and recognize the Validity and Legitimacy of said nation's government.  As a condition of formal recognition, each nation shall be allowed to maintain official diplomatic missions, be they embassies, consulates, or legations, within the territory of the other nation. All diplomatic missions within the territorial boundaries of a host nation shall be considered the Territory of the foreign nation. As such, the missions
shall be governed by the Laws and Regulations of the foreign nation, with due consideration to the Regulations of the host nations. All official diplomatic envoys and personnel shall be granted the right of Diplomatic Immunity from prosecution under the laws of the host nation.

    Having been granted extra-territorial rights and diplomatic immunity for missions and envoys respectively, it is hereby agreed that an Attack upon a foreign diplomatic mission or its personnel, or the illegal detention of diplomatic personnel, shall be considered an Act of War, and rightful provocation for the advent of hostilities between the signing nations.

------------------------------------------
Article II Alliance Proclamation
------------------------------------------

    Amicable relations having been established as existing between the Signatory Nations, be it hereby declared and noted that a Lasting and Eternal Peace exists between the citizens, government, and territory of the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania and the citizens, government, and territory of the Free Republic of Dignania. Each nation shall refrain from acts of hostility toward the citizens, vehicles, territory, or government of the other nation, and shall restrain its citizens likewise from acts of hostility. Any citizen who takes such hostile action toward the other Signatory of this document without a preceding valid war declaration from his Government does so at his own risk, without knowledge of his Government,
and with the full understanding that in doing so he forfeits the protection of his Government.

    A state of Alliance and Close Cooperation and Friendship is also declared as existing between the two Signing Parties of this document for a period of no less than five years, and renewable every two years thereafter by mutual Legislation to that effect. Such Alliance will take form in all Political, Economic, and Military manner as set forth by this Treaty, provided that such Alliance does not interfere
with similar existing Treaties with other States not Signatories to this document.

    A Military Alliance having been declared between the two Signatories, the Alliance shall remain dormant until either Party activates it. Such Activation will occur through the deliverance of a Diplomatic Note to that effect delivered to the Other Party through the diplomatic offices of the Activating Party. After receiving such activation notice, the Receiving Party must then formally respond through Legislation declaring the activation notice to be properly formatted and delivered, and then declaring its intention to fulfill its obligation under the Military Alliance. Such obligations must be specified in the activation notice, and should indicate whether or not the Activating Party wishes full Combat Support from the Receiving Party. Once the activation note has been received, and the proper Legislation passed in reply, the Receiving Party is obligated under the Military Alliance to provide whatever support is specified in the activation notice. Failure to fulfill this obligation will be considered a breach of this Treaty, will effectively nullify this Treaty in its Entirety, and will serve as proper grounds for a Declaration of War.

    In the event of the advent of hostilities between one Signatory of this document and a State not a Signatory to this document, and the First Party does not deliver an activation note to the Second Signatory, the Second
Signatory is required to firmly declare its Neutrality in the conflict, and all parties are required to abide by the Rules and Regulations laid out in Article IV of this document.

-------------------------------------------
Article III International Borders
-------------------------------------------

    The Borders of the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania are hereb recognized as corresponding to those Borders as set forth in the Official maps displayed on the Royal Government homepage, including all overseas possessions, colonies, and territories of said Kingdom.

    The Borders of the Free Republic of Dignania are hereby recognized as corresponding to those Borders as set forth in the Official maps displayed on the MLFLD homepage, including the islands of the Gonnoreia archipelago.

-----------------------------------------------------
Article IV Neutral Rights & Obligations
-----------------------------------------------------

    Having now declared recognition of each other, and having declared a peace existing between the Signatories, and having further opened economic relations, should there come a time when the First Party finds itself engaged in Hostilities with a foreign enemy not a Signatory to this document, it is the solemn obligation of the Second Party to this treaty to firmly declare its Neutrality in the conflict. As such, the
Neutral Party agrees not to provide military aid to either of the Belligerent nations unless such aid is stipulated by a subsequent treaty. The Neutral Party is not allowed to permit recruitment for a Belligerent Nation's Armed Forces upon its soil, or allow its Territory to be used as a staging area for a Belligerent's Armed Forces.

    As a declared Neutral in such a Conflict, the Neutral Party has the right to engage in trade with both Belligerents without menace to its Vessels or Citizens, providing that said trade is in non-contraband goods and is not with a blockaded port. Such trade in non-contraband goods allows the Neutral Vessel to transport non-contraband goods from the Neutral Nation into a Belligerent Nation, and allows non-contraband goods from the Belligerent Nation to be exported on Neutral Vessels.  However, any trade not open to foreign vessels in time of Peace is not to be considered open to foreign vessels in time of War. Thus, any foreign ship engaging in such formerly restricted trade will be considered the property of the Belligerent Nation and treated as such. The Neutral Party will not in anyway show favoritism toward either Belligerent during wartime trade. The Neutral Party shall also be allowed unlimited and unrestricted trade with other Neutral Nations during wartime without fear of intervention by either Belligerent.

    During wartime, the blockade of a Belligerent port will be considered effective and binding only if the blockading force is disposed in such a way as to make communication with the blockaded port a menace to the safety of merchant traffic and shipping. Trade with such a port, having been formally declared and proven to be under blockade, is to be considered off-limits, and conducted only under the risk of the crew of such a ship. Any ship attempting to enter or leave a port under blockade, following a grace period following the
institution of said blockade, is considered to be a blockade-runner, and thus liable for capture. Any and all ships of the Neutral Party thus captured or destroyed will be assumed to have forfeited the protection of their Government.

    The entry of Belligerent warships into Neutral waters will be considered an Act of War unless escorted by a Neutral warship. Belligerent warships shall be allowed entry into the ports of the Neutral party for a period of no more than 48 hours, and only in cases which require immediate repairs to said warship to prevent sinking and loss of life. Should said warship remain in a Neutral port for more than the specified 48 hours, the warship will be interned by the Neutral Government for the duration of the Hostilities, to be returned to its rightful Government following the conclusion of a peace treaty ending the Conflict.

    Any and all goods considered to be contraband are liable to seizure by a Belligerent Nation at the expense of the owner. Goods considered to be contraband are: any and all forms of weaponry, biological weapons, chemical weapons, weapons components, clothing for uniforms, official Government or Military correspondance or dispatches, naval stores, ammunition, and/or persons serving in the Armed Forces of a Belligerent Nation.

    These Regulations on Neutral Rights set forth in Article IV of this document shall be considered legal and binding for a period of four years following the Ratification of this document, and renewable every four years thereafter by mutual Legislation to that effect.

----------------------------
Article V Extradition
----------------------------

    The Nations hereby subscribing to this treaty, having agreed to open and establish peaceful relations, also endeavor to cooperate on the issue of International Criminal Law. In this respect, the Signatories to this document hereby agree to Extradite the wanted Criminals of the other Signatory from the Host Nation to the Original Foreign Nation. These extraditions shall be dealt with by the duly appointed Consuls or other Diplomatic Envoys present, and before a duly authorized Judicial Officer of the Host Nation. Extradition is to apply to all Criminals wanted on outstanding Warrants and valid Charges, both Civil and Felony. The Regulations on Extradition contained in Article V of this Treaty will be considered legal and binding for a period of four years following the Ratification of this document, and renewable every two years thereafter by mutual Legislation to that effect.

----------------------------------
Article VI Ammendments
----------------------------------

    Following the Ratification of this treaty by the Signing Nations, the treaty may at any time be ammendend or added to following diplomatic negotiations between the Nations, and ratification of the Ammendment as if a seperate treaty. Failing this, the negotiators may opt to create an entirely seperate treaty to be enforced equally with this one.

------------------------------
Article VII Abrogation
------------------------------

    This Treaty of Alliance & Cooperation, duly Signed and Ratified by the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania and the Free Republic of Dignania, is to be considered legally binding on both nations for the time limits specified or until such time as the two Nations agree to mutual end the treaty stipulations. At anytime, this treaty may be abrogated unilaterally by providing to the other Signatory Government six months prior to premature termination, official notice in writing of one Government's intentions to end the treaty. The treaty may also
be abrogated bilaterally following diplomatic negotiation and legislative consent, resulting in joint legislation to effectively deactivate the treaty.

May this Treaty of Alliance & Cooperation be the first step toward a bright future of cooperation between these two nations.

              Signatures:

              Harrison Ford
Free Republic of Dignania/MLFLD
              March 14, 299
 

               Melissa Rust
 Kingdom of Eastern Zartania
        March 14, 299

Negotiated and Signed in Haddock Cove, capital of the Royal Crown Colony of Haddock Cove, Kingdom of Eastern Zartania.
 

Report from HMIS Imperial City off the coast of Dignania - (3:30AM Local Time)

[cleared through the RNS Broadcast Center and the Ministry of Public Information & Customs]

    "This is Thomas Skillern reporting to you live from the Eastern  Zartanian battleship Imperial City somewhere near Dignania. It's still pitch black here, with dawn 3 hours away. A few moments ago, we felt the ship's engines kick into higher gear, and we can feel the ship picking up speed. As I look over the starboard stern of the ship I can see the blacked-out silhouettes of the other ships being left behind. The carrier Warbird and her escorts seem to be moving off in another direction. We're heading away from them quickly now. The ship's crew has been called to battle stations, and there's a sense of real urgency throughout the battleship. I don't know what's going on exactly, but it feels like something's coming. Something big. This is Thomas Skillern, KTZ-TV, reporting from the battleship Imperial City somewhere off Dignania."
 

News Report from HMIS Imperial City off the Coast of Dignania- (10:30AM Local Time)

[live broadcast from Thomas Skillern on board the battleship HMIS Imperial City, interruptions caused
on the scene]

    "I'm here on board the battleship Eastern Zartanian Imperial City.  Earlier this morning I sent a report saying that we were apparently enroute somewhere. Well, now we're... [BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!] ...ation.
Sorry for that interruption. What I said is that we're now on station. We're currently cruising... [BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!] ...enty-two miles off the Dignanian city of Demiéville. Latest intelligence reports say that UBD forces have finally pushed through the Trinity Passes, and in a lightning-type str... [BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!] ...aken Demiéville. I've been told that their forces are now just north of the city preparing for a strike further north against the Loyalist forces and against the city of Mermosillo. We arrived here on station around 06:30 this morning, and at 06:45, just 15 minutes after sunri... [BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!] ...pened fire on the UBD forces outside Demiéville. Those loud booms you're hearing in the background are the battleship's nine 16-inch guns of the main battery firing. This is the first time that they've ev... [BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!] ...in anger, and the first time in decades that a battleship has been engaged in combat on Vexillium. The shelling has been going on for hours now, as we steam back and forth along the coast. I can only imagine what's going on among the UBD forces, as I can't see them from here. We've also rec... [BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!]...airstrikes further inland. We have yet to determine, however, if those airstrikes are indeed being carried out by airplanes from the carrier Warbird. [commotion in the background, sound of feed pounding on the deck and shouts: "Let's move!" "Go, go, go!" "Standby anti-air stations!" "Clear this area!!"] We have a UBD air raid inbound!! Let's go! We have to move to a safer area of the ship. I'll try to report more lat..."

    [transmission ended at source]
 
 

An open air transmission from Ahmanden Bay in southern Dignania - (1:14PM Local Time)

    "Mayday! Mayday! we are under attack by unknown forces. This is UBD destroyer Valdez to all UBD naval forces. Come in!
    Mayday! Mayday! We are under attack, Repeat we are under attack by KTZ forces here in the Ahmaden Bay. Please come in. Our position is....." (transmission cut off)
 
 
 

RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

KTZ Domestic News Relating to the War in Dignania - (11:15PM Local Time)

[press release from the Ministry of Public Information & Customs, and the Ministry of the Interior]
 
 

 MARCH 16, 1363 (299AP)
***************************

    Around 3:00 this afternoon there was a demonstration in Imperial City. About 500 people gathered near King Fredrik Plaza to protest the active engagement of Eastern Zartanian forces in open combat with the UBD in
Dignania. The Royal Police and a phalanx (50 soldiers) of the local militia were called out to ensure that the protest did not get out of hand. After closing off access to the government sector of the city, Royal Police and soldiers formed a living barrier to contain the protesters. The crowd peacefully dispersed around 5:30 this afternoon.
No violence was reported, and the two only arrests were of individuals who attempted to spray paint graffiti on the walls of a local Royal Police station. Officials within the Royal Armed Forces believe that today's protest may have actually been engineered by MCZ members, and have warned that such demonstrations may be only the beginning.
 

              Stan Cordero
              Spokesman for the Ministry of Public Information & Customs
 
 

March 17, 299AP

BREAKING NEWS!!!
 
 

Operation Dragon-Fire
KTZ Officially Enters the War






KTZ Military Briefing for March 16th - (3:25AM Local Time)

  [News briefing carried out at Imperial Naval Headquarters, Claw Anchorage. Fleet Admiral Mikale Indurii (IZN) and Commander-General Nikolas Vogle (RZAF) explain the current military situation in Dignania.]

INDURII: Thank you all for being here with us this morning. This is a very momentous day in the history of Eastern Zartania. As you all know by now, early yesterday morning, just after dawn, the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania became actively involved militarily in the current civil war raging in Dignania. We've called this press conference here in Claw Anchorage to explain to you all the exact course of yesterday's events, and the technical aspect of Operation Dragon-Fire.

    Last week, as Hurricane Heather pounded Dignania, Task Force 1/3 made its final approach to the combat area. The naval force is composed of ships from Task Forces 1 and 3. Task Force 1 is centered around the aircraft carrier HMIS Warbird (JC-1), and contains the following ships: the heavy cruiser HMIS Alfacron (HC-3), the light cruiser HMIS Imperial Raider (LC-1), the destroyers HMIS East Zartania (D-5) and HMIS Queen Irina (D-11), and the frigates HMIS Diligence (F-24), HMIS Seadragon (F-1), and HMIS Alekmo (F-12). Task Force 3 is centered around the battleship HMIS Imperial City (B-1), and contains the following ships: the heavy cruiser HMIS Thornbush (HC-2), the light cruiser HMIS Sovereign Raider (LC-4), the destroyers HMIS King Bruno (D-1) and HMIS Andrèv (D-16), and the frigates HMIS Defiant (F-19), HMIS Enigma (F-10), and HMIS Seatiger (F-6). TF 1/3 used the passing hurricane as cover to slip into the Gonnoreia archipelago unnoticed by the UBD. Arriving on station last Friday, TF 1/3 remained hidden, maintained radio silence, and kept approximately 500 miles from the coast. While holding station, TF 1/3 was joined by the last two remnants of the Dignanian Coastal Defense Force: two missile corvettes, DNS Menace and DNS Wrath.

    Just after midnight, orders were sent to TF 1/3 to begin Operation Dragon-Fire. Upon receiving the orders, TF 1/3 divided into three sections and began its first combat operations. Battlegroup A (consisting of the carrier Warbird, the corvette Wrath, the destroyer King Bruno, and the frigate Alekmo) proceeded to a point 200 miles northeast of the city of Mermosillo. Battlegroup B (consisting of the battleship Imperial City, the destroyer Queen Irina, the frigates Enigma and Seatiger, and the light cruiser Sovereign Raider) proceeded down the coast to the city of Demiéville. Battlegroup C (consisting of the heavy cruisers Alfacron and Thornbush, the light cruiser Imperial Raider, the corvette Menace, the destroyers East Zartania and Andrèv, and the frigates Diligence, Defiant, and Seadragon) proceeded at top speed toward Ahmaden Bay while keeping to seaward.

    At dawn, 06:30, the carrier Warbird launched ten A-4 attack bombers, ten F-11 fighter-bombers, and ten F-11 escort fighters, while retaining ten F-12 fighters behind for combat air patrol (CAP). At 06:50, after receiving confirmation of aerial attacks underway by UBD forces, the carrier air groups made their final runs into Dignania. The A-4's targeted bridges, railways, and transportation routes around the city of Demiéville, while the F-11 fighter-bombers concentrated on attacking UBD supply depots and airfields near the front lines. The F-11 escort fighters provided air cover for the bombers, and attempted to eliminate SAM batteries when able. The surprise counted on for the success of the mission was complete. No aerial resistance was encountered upon ingress, and all ordinances were delivered. Upon egress, however, resistance was encountered. Several SAM batteries opened fire upon our aircraft. While the F-11's were able to silence most of them, one F-11 has been confirmed shot down. The pilot and navigator, Midshipman Richard Andersen and Master Chief Matthew Upton, were both seen to eject over the front line area. Their homing transponders appear to be operational, and we are currently attempting to put together a rescue operation. Also upon attempting to leave the combat zone the A-4's were jumped by three UBD Echo fighters. One fighter was immediately downed by an F-11 flown by Sub-Lieutenant Warren Keffer, scoring Eastern Zartania's first-ever aerial kill. One A-4 was damaged in the attack before the two remaining Echos were driven off. One was last seen trailing smoke and descending rapidly, but we cannot confirm at this time whether or not it was a kill. All aircraft except Midshipman Andersen's returned to the carrier, were refueled and reloaded, and launched on follow-up missions. The follow-up missions proved just as successful, with all ordinances delivered again. However, resistance was heavier this time, as the UBD was prepared. One A-4 was lost over the target to a local SAM battery. The missile was seen to impact the airplane, breaking it in half. Neither the pilot, Midshipman Natasha Burns, or the navigator, Master's Mate Bradly Grasik, were seen to eject, and both have been listed as the Kingdom's first combat losses in this war. Upon attempting to return to the carrier, three F-11 fighters became involved in a dogfight with five UBD Echos. The Echos fired their missiles at long-range, scoring one near miss. The F-11's then successfully closed the range and engaged with their Striker Air-to-Air Missiles (AAMs). Two Echos were immediately destroyed. The other three attempted to evade, diving toward the ground, but were pursued by the two undamaged F-11's. Upon approaching the front line and the threat of retaliatory hand-held SAMs, the F-11's fired their last Strikers before breaking off pursuit. Two Echos were hit, one being destroyed instantly. The other was seen to be hit by a SAM apparently from an MLFLD battery, and destroyed. Sub-Lieutenant Jeff Abbott has been credited with two kills, and his wingman, Midshipman Carole Korakis, has been credited with one and a half. All remaining KTZ airplanes returned safely to the carrier. Intelligence estimates indicate that 73% of the bridge, railroad, and road targets in the Demieville area were destroyed, and that 62% of the F-11 targets were destroyed. These targets include two advance airfields, a supply depot, and six SAM batteries.

    Meanwhile, at 06:30 Battlegroup B arrived on station 21 miles off the city of Demiéville. At 06:45, the battleship opened fire with its main battery on the UBD forces gathered outside the city. The shells from the nine 16-inch guns wreaked havoc with the UBD forces. The shelling continued until 10:35, when a UBD retaliatory air strike was detected inbound. The frigates, destroyer, and light cruiser formed a protective wall around the battleship. The UBD strike consisted of six medium-range bombers and five Echo fighters carrying bombs. The strike appeared to be poorly coordinated, and the planes carried the wrong kind of ammunition; another sign that complete surprise was achieved. Three bombers were knocked down by the SAMs launched from the escort screen before reaching the ships, as were two fighters. The remaining aircraft, flying at wavetop level were able to release their ordinance. Their pilots were, however, apparently not used to bombing ships as almost all of the bombs missed their targets. HMIS Imperial City was struck once by a 500 pound bomb on her forecastle, doing slight damage, but injuring four crewmen. The frigate Enigma was also struck by a bomb. The bomb wrecked her forward 3-inch gun, and killed two crewmembers, while injuring six others. Fortunately neither ship's efficiency was impaired. Three of the remaining aircraft were shot down, and the others escaped inland. At that point, Lower Admiral Alexander Krishnien ordered that five more salvos be fired on the UBD army forces, after which the force withdrew northward to rendezvous with Battlegroup A. Commander-General Vogle will now explain the Air Force's role in the operation.

VOGLE: At 04:00 yesterday morning, as TF 1/3 was splitting to begin the operation, a squadron of long-range B-8 heavy bombers took off from Haddock Cove, escorted by a squadron of F-11 fighters. The 16 B-8's were armed with 40,000 pounds of bombs each, the bomb loads having been reduced to provide for extra fuel storage for the long flight. Likewise, the 16 F-11 fighters carried only two Striker AAMs a piece to enable them to carry external fuel tanks as well. The strike force arrived over Dignania at approximately 07:30, and immediately proceeded toward their objective: the Trinity Passes in the eastern Rokariyn Mountains. Again, surprise was complete as the bombers approached their target, and no fighter or SAM defenses were encountered. From an altitude of 52,000 feet the bombers dropped a total of over half a million pounds of bombs on the passes in a bombing method known as "carpet bombing" or "saturation bombing." The devastation is expected to be complete, hopefully destroying the passes completely, but we have yet to confirm that. Upon exiting Dignanian airspace the bombers were attacked by four UBD Echo fighters. One bomber was damaged when an AAM near miss took out one of its engines. One bomber was also lost to a direct hit from a UBD AAM. Only one parachute was seen as the plane descended toward the ocean. The copilot, Flight Officer Harold Allen, was later rescued from the water by the MLFLD corvette Menace. The other five crewmen were killed. The three UBD fighters were destroyed by Eastern Zartanian fighters flown by Flight Officer Ben Zayne, Flight Commander Susan Ivanova, and Flight Commander Gary Mitchell. After escorting the bombers to a point 200 miles off the Dignanian coast, the F-11 squadron broke formation to wavetop level, and proceeded north to land at the newly completed airstrip on Chrihan Island in the Gonnoreia archipelago. The 3rd Fighter Squadron will begin full combat operations from Chrihan until a suitable base can be secured in Dignania proper. The remaining 15 bombers of the 2nd Bomber Squadron were refueled aerially enroute back to Haddock Cove. Back to you now, Admiral.

INDURII: Just before 13:00 yesterday afternoon, a distress call was heard by the world. This distress call marked the beginning of the third and final Eastern Zartanian phase of Operation Dragon-Fire. Battlegroup C, proceeding southward and at a distance from the Dignanian coast, had been given orders to enter Ahmaden Bay, destroy any UBD naval presence, and then to sink any and all merchant shipping in the port of Mosul. For some time now, intelligence sources have indicated that the main supply route for the UBD army pushing northward has come through Mosul. In command of the Battlegroup was Captain John Sheridan, commanding officer of the heavy cruiser Alfacron, temporarily promoted to commodore for this mission. Commodore Sheridan was given full tactical discretion over the mission. He elected to approach Ahmaden Bay from the northeast, thereby hoping to trap any UBD naval forces in the bay, and cut off any chance of escape or reinforcement from the south. Sheridan arrayed his ships in such a way as to initially confuse the enemy's radar, and thus gain the advantage of surprise. If you'll view the battle map, you will see the Eastern Zartanian forces displayed in black, the UBD forces displayed in red, and the disposition of merchant ships shown in green. The size of the mark indicates the type of ship: heavy cruiser, light cruiser, destroyer, frigate, or corvette.  Sheridan put his two heavy cruisers close together with the light cruiser between them but slightly behind, the frigate Seadragon behind the heavy cruiser Thornbush, and the corvette between the cruisers Alfacron and Imperial Raider. The other ships were arrayed in line abreast behind them. This way, the UBD radar sets showed a very large surface object moving toward them, and concealed the presence of the corvette. Upon detecting the incoming Eastern Zartanian squadron, the UBD destroyers Valdez and Revolution, and the corvettes Warsprite and Patriot moved forward from Ahmaden bay to attack. The enemy corvettes launched their Surface-to-Surface missiles (SSMs) at a range of 25 miles at the heavy cruisers. As soon as the 16 missiles were detected on Eastern Zartanian radar, Imperial Raider, Seadragon, Defiant, and Andrèv began launching SAMs to try to intercept the SSMs. At the same time the MLFLD corvette Menace and the frigate Diligence opened fire with a barrage of 14 SSMs aimed for the UBD corvettes. The enemy ships launched their countermeasures devices, but to no avail. The corvette Warsprite was hit by two SSMs and completely destroyed, while Patriot was hit by a single missile and stopped dead in the water. Our SAMs intercepted some of the inbound missiles, but several still made their marks. The heavy cruiser Alfacron was hit by one missile admiships, killing six and  wounding 14. HMIS Thornbush was hit by two missiles. Fifteen were killed, twelve wounded, and the engine room was damaged. The light cruiser Imperial Raider also took a hit to her Number 1 6-inch gun turret, resulting in four dead and two wounded. At that moment the UBD destroyer sent its distress call. Very quickly the frigate Seadragon broke formation to finish off the enemy corvette, while the UBD destroyers and the Eastern Zartanian cruisers began a gun duel. The heavy cruisers opened fire with their 8-inch guns at 15 miles, and immediately began to score hits on the enemy destroyers. The cruisers broke formation in an attempt to bring their broadsides to bear. The destroyer Revolution did the same and entered into a gun duel with the cruiser Alfacron. In ten minutes, Revolution was sinking below the waves. The destroyer Valdez, however, rushed right at the wounded cruiser, Thornbush, in an attempt to fire torpedoes. Thornbush raked the destroyer with constant gunfire, almost demolishing the destroyer's bridge, but the destroyer was still able to get off two torpedoes which found their mark. HMIS Thornbush was stopped dead in the water, and began listing to port. Still her guns kept firing, and with the help of the two other cruisers brought a quick end to the destroyer Valdez. By 13:00, the initial battle was over, and all four UBD ships had been sunk. Both heavy cruisers, the light cruiser, and the frigate Seadragon had been hit by enemy fire. HMIS Seadragon was alongside HMIS Thornbush attempting to provide support and help extinguish the cruiser's fires. Commodore Sheridan, knowing that there were still two more enemy corvettes at sea, ordered his ships to begin firing SSMs at the merchant shipping inside the bay. The frigate Defiant was ordered to round the point of headland east of Mosul to watch for UBD reinforcements. At 14:20, after destroying almost all of the enemy merchant shipping, a signal was received from HMIS Defiant that she had picked up an enemy corvette on radar approaching quickly. Sheridan ordered the squadron to prepare for battle, and began to move them inshore near the headland to avoid radar detection as long as possible. Meanwhile, the frigate Defiant came under SSM attack from the UBD corvette Arnaud. HMIS Defiant took three missile hits and began to founder. Sheridan ordered his force to round the headland and engage the enemy. The destroyers East Zartania and Andrèv rounded first, concealing the MLFLD corvette behind them, and opened fire on the enemy, who evaded their guns. The corvette Menace fired eight SSMs at the UBD ship, whose missiles were just striking home on East Zartania. The enemy corvette took four direct SSM hits, and was completely destroyed. The final enemy corvette, Vengeance, has still not yet been located. By the time Arnaud was sunk, the time was almost 14:45. The heavily damaged cruiser Thornbush was taken in tow by the slightly damaged Imperial Raider. The destroyer Andrèv took survivors off the frigate Defiant before she, too, sank. Heading north to rendezvous with the rest of TF 1/3, Battlegroup C was met by two flights of fighters from the 3rd Fighter Squadron flying from Chrihan Island, and escorted away. All told, one frigate (Defiant) was sunk, one heavy cruiser (Thornbush) heavily damaged, one heavy cruiser (Alfacron) moderately damaged, one light cruiser (Imperial Raider) damaged, one destroyer (East Zartania) damaged, and one frigate (Seadragon) damaged. Eastern Zartanian dead for the operation: 151, wounded: 274, missing: 16. The names of those killed or missing will be posted later this week. Earlier yesterday afternoon, during the Battle of Ahmaden Bay, a troop transport docked in the city of Kasama and unloaded the 1,000 soldiers of the 34th Regiment Royal Infantry, the first ground units to enter combat. They were immediately whisked away from the dock area, and are currently moving into the combat zone. It is hoped that Operation Dragon-Fire will have helped slow down or blunt the UBD northern drive. This operation, planned last week  jointly by the MLFLD and our own Royal Armed Forces, has served as the backdrop for a Loyalist counterattack against the UBD forces in the Central Valley.

Below are pictures of the last few moments of life for HMIS Defiant:

[released by KTZ military]
 

HMIS Defiant burning after missiles hits

HMIS Defiant's magizine explodes sending her to the bottom

The final moments for the HMIS Defiant

    After consulting with His Royal Majesty and with the leadership of the MLFLD in Dignania, we are hereby declaring a war zone around Dignania for a distance of 400 miles. We are also declaring a full submarine blockade of UBD-held Dignania. Any ships entering the war zone, regardless of flag, will be torpedoed. We urge all neutral states to reroute your merchant ships away from the war zone, and to warn all of your citizens against entering it. Our submarines will operate within the 400-mile war zone only. We will not attack ships outside the zone. We also urge all states to keep us informed of any merchant ships near the war zone which could stray into it so that we can inform our captains to avoid those situations.

    This concludes this briefing. More information will be released as it becomes available. Thank you.

            [*NOTE: Ships on map not drawn to scale.]
 

RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

An update to the war in Dignania - (7:00PM Local Time) With Operation Dragon-Fire, KTZ changed the whole complexity of the war in Dignania.  This morning's briefing given by Fleet Admiral  Indurii and Commander-General Vogle detailed yesterday's military operation.  From all reports, Operation Dragon-Fire was a complete success.  Even though the KTZ suffered over 400 casualties, the operation sent a wave of confusion through the UBD forces.  The surprise and strength of the KTZ attack disrupted the UBD offensive toward the port city of Mermosillo and from all reports coming out of Dignania, the MLFLD forces have turned the disruption and confusion to their advantage by counterattacking.  MLFLD forces are reported on the move toward Demieville.  Military analysts in the RNS Broadcast Center seem to believe that the MLFLD will now attempt to flank the city of Demieville to the south and cut off UBD forces inside the city

    During the operation, KTZ air forces concentrated on communication and transportation targets along the UBD's advance.  The goal was the make it hard for the UBD to sustain their drive north.  For the first time in three weeks, UBD soldiers had to scan the sky for air attacks. The Royal air force also bombed the Trinity Passes leading in the Lower Rokariyn mountains to disrupt the flow of supplies and reinforcements to the front lines.  The military briefing early this morning indicated that while most of the air missions were successful, Eastern Zartania lost several fighters and bombers.  We now honor those airmen who died in the line of duty yesterday and today with a moment of silence. (Several seconds of silence follow)

    Operation Dragon-Fire also included a naval bombardment by the Battleship Imperial City on the city of Demieville and the stunning Battle of Ahmaden Bay.  Both operations were successful in their goals and KTZ naval forces distinguished themselves.  At the Battle of Ahmaden Bay, Eleven UBD warships and merchant ships were destroyed which was balanced by the loss of HMIS Defiant and several other KTZ ships damaged.  Commodore John Sheridan led Battle group C into Ahmaden Bay with the task of attacking merchant ships at the port of Mosul.  His battle group completed their mission objectives and destroyed five UBD warships.  It was a glorious display of KTZ naval power.  We also honor the naval dead and wounded.  Admiral  Indurii stated that KTZ's casualties were 151 dead, 274 wounded, and 16 missing. He went on to say that the names of those killed and missing will be posted later this week.

    This morning's briefing confirmed the first presence of KTZ ground forces in Dignania.  Admiral Indurii informed the press that a troop transport docked in the city of Kasama and unloaded the 1,000 soldiers of the 34th Regiment Royal Infantry.  The Regiment was immediately rushed to the front lines.  No word yet on their whereabouts or condition.

    The briefing also declared a 400 mile war zone around Dignania and the implantation of a naval blockade to stop all shipping to the UBD.  Admiral Indurii told reporters that any ship caught within the war zone will be sunk.  So far only the Federal Republic of Whitlam has made a reply to the KTZ blockade.  Prime Minister Shane Armstrong stated, "The Federal Republic of Whitlam warns all vessels that fly her flag to stay out of the exclusion zone set up around Dignania. We take no responsibility for what happens to any vessels that stray into the Eastern Zartanian security zone."  When more developments on the blockade and the war in Dignania are made available, RNS will report it.  Until then, RNS sends our best wishes to all the families that have made the ultimate sacrifice for the good of the kingdom.
 
 

March 18, 299AP
 

KTZ Military Briefing for March17 - (12:00AM Local Time)

[Military briefing conducted at Imperial Naval Headquarters, Claw Anchorage, by Fleet Admiral Indurii and Commander-General Vogle.]

INDURII: Today marks the second day of the active involvement of Eastern Zartanian military forces in the Dignanian civil war. Yesterday we made our initial presence felt with Operation Dragon-Fire: combined and coordinated air strikes and naval strikes aimed at the UBD's ability to pursue the war and harm our forces. Following yesterday's engagements, our naval forces withdrew northward toward the Gonnoreia archipelago to evaluate their loses, to make temporary repairs, and to prepare for the next round of action. It was decided by engineers with TF 1/3, and by the commanding officer of TF 1/3, Upper Admiral Angelica Cantonev, that the heavy cruiser HMIS Thornbush was too badly damaged to be repaired on the scene. As such, HMIS Thornbush has departed the war zone under tow from the light cruiser HMIS Imperial Raider enroute to Haddock Cove for temporary repairs before being sent home to Eastern Zartania for full repairs. The two cruisers are being escorted by the destroyer East Zartania and the frigate Enigma. ETA in Haddock Cove is 11 days, and the squadron will be met at sea by a special ocean-going tugboat from Haddock Cove to better tow Thornbush back to the colony. The other damaged ships have withdrawn further into the archipelago to attempt temporary repairs before returning to action. Commander-General Vogle will now update the air force operations.

VOGLE: Thank you. Following the conclusion of yesterday's bombing operations against the Trinity Passes in the Rokariyn Mountains, it was determined that the strike had not damaged one of the passes at all. The area is reported to be littered with mobile SAM batteries and there are hand-held SAMs in the mountains. For these reasons a surgical fighter-bomber strike was ruled out, as casualties were predicted too high. Instead a follow-up carpet bombing raid was authorized, to take place under the cover of darkness. At 04:20 in the morning the 14 flyable bombers of the 2nd Bombing Squadron arrived over the target, having rendezvoused with eight F-11 fighters from Chrihan Island 100 miles out to sea. Again the bombers saturated the area with half a million pounds of bombs, and again surprise was almost complete. No UBD fighters were encountered, but several SAM batteries opened fire. Three batteries were silenced by the escorting fighters, three bombers were still hit. Two were seen to go down over the target area, but the third one was the victim of a near miss that ended up cutting one of its
hydraulic lines. Of the two downed bombers, the first one was almost completely destroyed in air. The second one was seen to break in half, with two parachutes emerging from the front end on its way down. The exact nature of the two survivors is currently unknown, but a rescue operation is currently being planned. A total of 10 Air Force personnel are confirmed killed from the assault. After daybreak, the 3rd Fighter Squadron (operating from Chrihan Island) began the job of escorting inbound carrier strikes. During the first mission, the flight was jumped by three UBD Echo fighters. The F-11s avoided the long-range AAMs launched by the Echos, and then closed to dogfighting range. At those close ranges, all three Echo fighters were shot down by the F-11s, losing only one of their own. Flight Officer Darien Jermis and his navigator, Crew Chief Elisa Darchek, both ejected from the fighter before it impacted the ground. They ejected over MLFLD-held territory, and preliminary reports from the area indicate that both have been safely recovered. Afternoon intelligence reports indicate that all three of the Trinity Passes have received varying amounts of damage, with the easternmost one being almost completely destroyed. The central pass is currently considered as unusable by mechanized forces, and the westernmost one has received we estimate 67% damage. Work has begun for the long-distance ferrying of additional RZAF squadrons to the war zone. A time table has not yet been set, but will be shortly. Admiral?

INDURII: Naval operations today consisted primarily of conducting precision air strikes along the front lines in support of MLFLD efforts to stem the UBD onslaught and spur a counterattack. Three A-4 sorties and two F-11 sorties were launched from the carrier Warbird today, doing moderate damage. In the course of the day's actions, one A-4 was heavily damaged by a nearby exploding SAM, and another F-11 was lost. Pulling up after dropping bombs on a UBD pillbox near the front lines, Midshipman Patricia Schuk's F-11 Hawk fighter was struck once by a
UBD-launched SAM. Both Schuk and Master Chief Wayne Sebastian, the navigator, were killed.

    The other way the naval action was kept underway was through the initial enforcement of yesterday's declared war zone and submarine blockade. With several submarines now on station, and following yesterday's warning about the blockade, the first kill was made this morning.  An Eastern Zartanian submarine operating in the south conducted an attack upon a 15,000-ton coastal freighter, sinking it with a single torpedo. Immediately prior to the attack, the captain had, indeed, identified  ship as flying a UBD flag. Three hours later another coastal freighter was attacked 200 miles away. This ship, also UBD-flagged, took a single torpedo hit to the bow, but did not sink. The submarine was about to finish the job when a UBD fighter was spotted, forcing the sub to dive
deeper. The freighter made it inland and succeeded and making it to its port destination. The freighter confirmed sunk was the UBD ship Norton, on a return trip to Brokenburg to pick up more supplies for transport to
the front. With the submarine blockade now in effect, we once again urge all countries to warn their merchant vessels and civilians from entering the war zone. This concludes today's briefing. We will update you further as events warrant.

           [This broadcast cleared the Ministry of Public Information & Customs.]
 

RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

RNS has recieved a letter from Vice-President Ferrier of the People's Revolutionary
Council of Dignania addressed to the Nations of Vexillium - (2:42PM Local Time)

Vexillium,

    On March 16, our country was attacked by the pigs for Eastern Zartania in a cowardly manner. They slaughtered women and children with their air attacks. The ships they sunk in Mosul were not merchant ships, but ships filled with refuggees attempting to escape from the MLFLD. Several thousand have been killed due to this evil attack upon our nation. The mere fact that they are supporting the MLFLD shows that they want to interfere with the rightful rule of the People.  Eastern Zartania thinks they have won, but the patriots of the UBD will defeat them. Their attacks did nothing to slow or stop the People's war against MLFLD. Even with the KTZ attacking us,
UBD will defeat them both.

    I delcare, under the Leadership of President Valdez, that the nations of Vexillium condemn this evil attack by Eastern Zartania. The UNV must force the KTZ to withdraw and allow the people of Dignania to fight for their freedom without interference. If the nations of Vexillium will not lift a hand to stop Eastern Zartania, then be warned, the UBD will not forget this act of treachery. We will strike back and cause you pain of which you can't imagine. If you thought that the attack on the Christiana's plane was bad wait and see what comes when we set our wrath upon the world. Long live the Revolution!

              Otho Ferrier
              Vice-President
              People's Revolutionary Council
              Foreign Minister
 

Port city of Mosul(3:00 PM) This is Scott Edwards reporting down by the docks in the Dignanian port city of Mosul.  Two days ago, an Eastern Zartanian naval task force sailed in from the west and opened fire on civilian transports.  Without any warning, they destroyed several ships filled with refugees.  The KTZ claim that those ships were carrying military supplies, but that is simply not the case.  The evidence clearly states that the ships were not carrying any military suppliers. Around two o’clock in the afternoon on March 16, the harbor in Mosul was busy unloading Dignanian exiles and refugees.  Suddenly, the KTZ ships came out of the horizon and attacked.  The brave UBD naval defense force guarding the harbor engaged the enemy battle fleet.  They were vastly outnumbered and outgunned, but they fought hard and inflected heavy damage on the KTZ ships.  Witnesses report that at least three Eastern Zartanian warships were sunk during the spectacular battle, but it was not enough.  All the UBD ships were destroyed.

    After the KTZ finished off the defense force, they proceeded to sink the transports anchored in the harbor.  The transports broadcasted calls on all frequencies claiming that they were civilian transports carrying people, but the calls were ignored.  All the ships were sunk with thousands killed.  For most of the day, residents of Mosul pulled out survivors and bodies from the water.  People expressed their anger by cursing the KTZ and the MLFLD.  One Mosul resident angered by the attack said “Those evil bastards murdered those people.  The KTZ came in and just slaughtered all those people.  I spit on them and hope they go to hell.”  This resident’s anger was felt by all of those who witnessed the battle.   This cowardly attack by the KTZ has signaled a new phase in this war, a phase which can only lead to more death and destruction.  This is Scott Edwards, UBD Revolutionary Press, reporting from the port city of Mosul.
 

RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

RNS has recieved a statement from Brigadier Baron Josef Hennessy the KTZ Ambassador to Dignania(MLFLD) - (4:30 Local Time)

    His statement will address the allegations made by the UBD about the murder of civilians during the Battle of Ahmaden.  He will also talk about the denouncement of Eastern Zartania made today by the Moun republic of Djeriga.  The Moun Republic is one of two nations that of recognized the UBD government.  They support the UBD in the war against MLFLD. RNS has Moun's statement about Eastern Zartania. The Supreme Alliant, Akhbaar Fahz said "The disciples of Moun hereby publicly declare the evilness of the Zartanian invasion!!! These non-believers are not following the Will of Moun, and Moun's Will Be Done!! May Moun have mercy with their wretched souls." And now Brigadier Hennessy's statement,

  On behalf of His Royal Majesty, King Bruno II, I bid greetings to the Nations of Vexillium.

    The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania flatly denies the allegations leveled against it recently by the United Brotherhood of Dignania. The Eastern Zartanian military has attacked only military targets in its campaign against the UBD and the MCZ. The ships sunk in Ahmaden Bay were not refugee ships as claimed by the UBD, but were in fact merchant ships carrying weapons and soldiers to reinforce the UBD army. As we are currently engaged in a war against the UBD, we cannot afford these reinforcements to reach their destination. Yes, several hundred people were killed in the attack on Ahmaden Bay. But those people were soldiers, revolutionaries, and fanatics loyal to the UBD, and therefore a direct threat to the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania. Our attack was legitimately executed against a fellow belligerent power, one which our own government has recognized as a belligerent. We have confined ourselves to military targets, and those institutions, locations, and vessels that could help our enemies. We also fully and openly denounce further UBD broadcasts as pure unsubstantiated propaganda, and denounce the "government" of Djeriga as a sponsor of international lawlessness, destruction, and terrorism. Do not stray into this fight, Djeriga, or not even your "Moun" will be able to protect you! The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania will continue to prosecute this war to the fullest, and we will do whatever must be done to ensure that the terror of the UBD and the MCZ do not threaten the rest of Vexillium. We and our allies, the MLFLD, will conduct this war as we see fit to achieve our ends.
 

              May Honor and Glory grace the Nations of Vexillium for Eternity.

              Brigadier Baron Josef Hennessy
              KTZ Ambassador to Dignania (MLFLD)
              on behalf of His Royal Majesty, King Bruno II vun Q'Leist

***********************************************************************************************
 
 

NATIONAL
EMERGENCY!!!






A KTZ Domestic Emergency has been declared - (5:28PM Local Time)

[National Emergency Broadcast Warning sounds in the background; fade in to RNS Broadcast Center]

    This is a special emergency announcement from the RNS Broadcast Center in Imperial City. His Royal Majesty has officially declared a national emergency throughout Eastern Zartania! All citizens are instructed to stay within their homes, and to remain tuned in to your local radio or television stations for continuing updates. We have received information here at RNS that a series of terrorist bombs have been detonated across the Kingdom, but no details as of yet. Again, a state of national emergency exists throughout Eastern Zartania! Please remain calm, and remain in your homes. More information will be released as it becomes available.

[National Emergency Broadcast Warning sounds again]
 
 


 NATIONAL EMERGENCY MESSAGE FROM THE KTZ






A report on the terrorist Attacks in the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania - (11:30PM Local Time)

[National Emergency Warning sounds in the background, fade in to RNS Broadcast Center]

    This is Alexia Nestor at the RNS Broadcast Center in Imperial City. The state of national emergency declared by His Royal Majesty late this afternoon remains in effect throughout Eastern Zartania tonight. We have been in contact with the Ministry of Public Information & Customs and have been given the following details.

    At approximately 4:15 this afternoon five explosive devices were detonated across the Kingdom. One device each were exploded in the cities of Claw Anchorage, Cazniev, Alfacron, Nomar, and Q'Leist. No warnings were received prior to the explosions, and no responsibility has yet been claimed. Officials on the scene indicate that all five of the devices were hidden inside some kind of briefcase. In Alfacron and Cazniev the explosions occurred in the central square of the city, which in old times was the market, and is still used as such at times. Preliminary estimates from Royal Police indicate that upwards of 300 people have been killed in those two cities alone. In Nomar the device has been determined to be a car bomb that was detonated in the tourist district damaging several hotels and shops. Luckily only ten people are confirmed dead in Nomar, with several hundred others injured. In the city of Q'Leist the device was apparently a small-yield bomb attached to a remote controlled airplane. The airplane was flown over the outer wall of Castle Q'Leist and allowed to crash and detonate. Castle Q'Leist is the original castle owned by the Royal Family, so investigators believe that the bombings may be in protest of the monarchy. Luckily no one was killed in Q'Leist, and minor damage was done to the castle. In Claw Anchorage a car bomb was detonated two blocks from Imperial Naval Headquarters. Unfortunately it was detonated on a primary boulevard just as jobs were letting out for the day. Investigators on the scene have indicated that more than 100 people were
killed and several hundred others injured.  All five bombs were detonated within minutes of each other, indicating an extensive amount of organization behind the attacks. Minutes after the initial bombings a similar incident occurred in Imperial City. A small van was noticed by security forces parked across the road from the Royal Council Chambers for several hours. Security forces noticed the van because its roof had been removed and replaced with a roll of canvas. Minutes after 4:15, security noticed a great deal of commotion inside the van. The
canvas was rolled back, revealing a small mortar inside the van. Seven rounds were quickly lobbed at the Council Chambers Building before the van sped away. Luckily the Royal Council had just adjourned for the day. However, two shells landed directly in the Royal Stek Assembly. Four assemblymen were killed, and seven others injured. The Ministers of Science and the Interior were also injured in the attack. Within four minutes Imperial City was completely closed off by units of the Royal Police and the Royal Army. Three hours ago, while conducting a
block-by-block search of the city, a company of Royal Army soldiers found the van and its four occupants. A shoot-out ensued with both sides engaging in heavy weapons fire. Three men inside the van were seen to be killed, and the fourth was apparently wounded. However, as the soldiers moved in on the van to apprehend the suspect, the vehicle was destroyed by an internal blast. Apparently the van was rigged with a self-destruct bomb of some kind. Investigators on the scene attempting to gather any clues they can.

       [commotion in the background]

    Hold on. I've just been handed a note here. A group has just phoned the RNS Broadcast Center claiming responsibility for the attacks. The Movement for a Communist Zartania, currently engaged in open hostilities  against the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania, has claimed that it detonated the devices in order to "make the people of Zartania understand that they must change their ways. The monarchy continues to oppress our people as it has for the past 300 years. Embrace the MCZ, rise up against your oppressors, and we will form a state built on equality for all. Rise up, our Zartanian brothers!"

    To recap, the state of national emergency is still in effect across the Kingdom tonight. Six terrorist attacks have taken place today throughout the Kingdom, including an apparent attempt on the King's life. The MCZ has claimed responsibility for these attacks, and has urged the Eastern Zartanian people to openly rebel against the monarchy. The Royal Government has not responded yet, but we will bring you that response as soon as it is announced. This is Alexia Nestor at the RNS Broadcast Center.

       [National Emergency Warning sounds in the background again]
 
 

March 19, 299AP

RNS BROADCAST CENTER:
 

MLFLD briefing in Kasama(3:00AM Local Time)

    Three hours ago, the reporters in Kasama were told that the MLFLD would hold a briefing detailing the military situation in Dignania.  Since the UBD offensive began on Friday March 12, no official statement has been given to the press.  The only response directed outside Dignania was a statement released by MLFLD leader Matthew Cook.  His statement was a desperate plea to his troops to hold on against the UBD.  Mr. Cook also announced the creation of the Ambrosio Line.  This defense line was to hold the UBD back, but it failed.  The Line was breached near the ocean and since then the UBD has taken Demieville and from last reports, are now driving toward the city of Marmosillo.

    Hold on a minute, two men have just entered the room.  One of them is Harrison Ford, the official who signed the Haddock Cove Treaty of Alliance with Eastern Zartania and is also the mayor of Regina.  The other man is Major Webster, one of the military leaders of the MLFLD.  All the reporters in the room are taking their seats for the briefing.  A MLFLD officer is approaching the microphone.

    “Good evening ladies and gentlemen of the press, thank you for coming here at such a late hour.  I would like to introduce two leaders from the MLFLD government.  They will give a briefing on the current war situation in Dignania. Mr. Harrison Ford will discuss the political developments over the last week, while General Dale Webster will discuss the current military situation. Please bid them welcome.”  The MLFLD officer turns over the microphone to Mr. Ford.  Ford steps up to the microphone and opens a notebook.  He pauses to scan the room full of reporters.  He is now putting on eyeglasses.

    “Ladies and gentlemen, on behalf of the Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania, I would like to thank you for your time and patience.  As you know, we have been at war with the UBD and MCZ for over three weeks.  And during that time, the MLFLD was formed and organized to combat this threat.  We have since then invited the Kingdom of Eastern Zartiana to help us rid Dignania of the UBD and MCZ.  The result was the Haddock Cove treaty, which I signed on the behalf of the MLFLD last week.  The treaty allied our two governments in a common cause.  That cause was the fight for freedom against tyranny.  Tyranny in the form of the UBD and MCZ.  At this time, we would like to publicly thank the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania and King Bruno for their help in our fight.  Without their moral and physical support, Dignania would have fallen long ago.  The people of Dignania honor those KTZ soldiers that have already given their lives to help us.  We would also like to give thanks ahead of time to those KTZ men and women who are even as I speak sailing to Dignania to put themselves in harm’s way.  I also denounce the terrorist attacks upon the Kingdom Eastern Zartania by the MCZ.  It is only natural for a organization such as the MCZ to use terror and murder as a weapon.  If everyone is worried about the so-called atrocities committed by the KTZ then they are ignoring the fact that the UBD and MCZ live by terror.  The MLFLD wishes our Allies luck in their internal war with the MCZ.  We understand that the KTZ’s internal enemy must be destroyed first before you can give us your full support.  In a token of friendship and in the spirit of an Ally, the MLFLD will turn over to KTZ officials a MCZ officer who was captured yesterday in the Rokariyn Mountains.  His name is Major Theodore Morden.  We hope he can help the KTZ in their struggle at home.  MLFLD also will not ask any questions about his eventual condition.

     I want to now discuss international situation involving the war in Dignania.  The MLFLD government supports any move or operation conducted by the KTZ.  These reports of atrocities from the UBD are lies.  Operation Dragon-fire did not target civilian transports or attack innocent people.  We are here to protect the people; not to kill them.  We also support the 400-mile war zone and the blockade of Dignania enforced by the KTZ.
I want to address those governments of Vexillium who are trying to send UNV peacekeeping forces to Dignania. The MLFLD will not accept any cease-fire or compromise plan that allows the UBD to control any territory in Dignania.  We are the legitimate government of Dignania.

    As of this moment, the city of Kasama will serve as the MLFLD capital of Dignania.  Kasama will serve as our capital until Montpelier can be liberated.  Until that time, the government seat will be in Kasama.  The current MLFLD government will be led by Matthew Cook.  I will serve as his immediate deputy. We will run the government until Dignania is freed for the UBD and only then, will the people be free to choose what form of government they want through elections.  We also invite any foreign government to come to Kasama to discuss recognition and support.  The MLFLD will send out our Diplomatic seal to anyone who would recognize our cause.  We ask the world to support us, but if they can’t see it in their interest to support us, we ask them to please stay out of the war and let the people of Dignania decide their own fate.  I will now turn it over to General Webster so he can discuss our current military situation.”  Mr. Ford steps away from the microphone to let General Webster talk.

    “Thank you Deputy Ford.  Ladies and gentlemen, as you know, the UBD began their offensive last Friday and since then they have pushed the MLFLD into the Rokariyn Mountains and in the case of Demieville have broken into the northern plain.  By Tuesday night, the situation was desperate for the MLFLD, but Operation Dragon-Fire changed all that.  Officers from MLFLD and KTZ planned the operation so as to achieve complete surprise against the UBD forces.  The goal was to break up the momentum of the offensive. The plan worked better then we could have hoped for.  The combination of land, sea, and air attack through the UBD into confusion.  Their coordinated attacks were sent into disarray.  Their supplies and reinforcements were cut off at the Trinity Passes and their supply port at Mosul lay in ruins.  KTZ aircraft provided vital ground support to our troops by destroying bridges and communication points.  They also turned the tide in the sky.  For over two weeks, UBD aircraft roamed the skies with impunity, but now with the help of the KTZ, we have achieved tactical air superiority over the northern plain.  This has allowed our soldiers the opportunity to regroup and counterattack with out the fear of air attacks.

    On March 17, we struck and Operation Turn-About was launched. Operation Turn-About was designed to drive the UBD forces out of Demieville and back across the Rokariyn Mountains.  Early morning March 17, three divisions of thirty thousand MLFLD soldiers struck the UBD’s left flank.  They attacked from the hills southeast of the city Mansa and drove east toward the ocean.  With the help of KTZ aircraft, the three divisions slammed into the UBD flank with telling results.  Throughout Wednesday, the MLFLD spearhead attacked the UBD flank.  The fighting was intense, but by this morning, the UBD forces were retreating.  Now the whole UBD advance is in danger.  With their leading elements near Merrmsillo, the UBD advance is stretched thin, which gives us the chance to cut them off from behind.  We have blunted the UBD break through in the east and are now in the process of closing the trap.  The battle is now a race.  The question is whether or not our forces can reach the ocean and cut off the UBD’s avenue of retreat before they escape back across the mountains. The next several days will decide the outcome in the east.

    The military situation over the rest of the front is more stable.  MLFLD forces lost all the Passes leading into the Rokariyn Mountains on Monday March 15, but after the UBD drove into the mountains for several miles, they began to meet strong resistance by our soldiers.  For much of the week, UBD forces attempted to push through the mountains, but our defenses were too strong.  They had the numbers and equipment, but we had spirit and terrain to make up for the difference.  By Wednesday, the UBD began to shift their forces east into the Demieville breach as land gained in the west was measured in feet instead of miles. The MLFLD forces in the Ambrosio Defensive Line repulsed several attacks today and yesterday.  The line is holding and there are signs the UBD is digging in just outside the line.  With the successful completion of Operation Turn-About, we will re-establish the Ambrosio line to the ocean.  From there, we will be able to drive south and free Dignania once and for all.  Thank you for your time and good night.”

    Deputy Ford and General Webster now leave the room without answering any questions.  This officially ends the briefing and now back to the studio.
 
 

NATIONAL EMERGENCY MESSAGE FROM THE KTZ






A report on the terrorist Attacks in the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania - (11:48AM Local Time)

[National Emergency Warning sounds in the background, fade in to RNS Broadcast Center]

    I'm Alexia Nestor, reporting from the RNS Broadcast Center in Imperial City. A state of national emergency still exists throughout Eastern  Zartania as investigators and clean-up crews are still trying to make sense of yesterday's terrorist bombings in five Eastern Zartanian cities. During the night the casualty figures rose more than expected, as bodies were pulled from the wreckage. In the Guldavyan city of Cazniev 178 are confirmed dead, 320 wounded, and 64 are still missing.  In Alfacron, the capital of the Skylands stek, 201 are reported dead, with an additional 400 injured. Authorities report that over 100 are still missing, as during the night a building damaged by the bomb blast collapsed on top of investigators, Royal Police, and soldiers of the stek militia. In Claw Anchorage, Subaria, the confirmed death toll currently stands at 280, with another 550 injured during the blast. It is unknown how many others are missing in Claw Anchorage, as the blast  occurred during one of the busiest parts of the day, and demolished several buildings. Half an hour ago, His Royal Majesty addressed the people of Eastern Zartania from the North Balcony of the Imperial Palace. He said that yesterday's attacks were "the last refuge of a coward, one who is unwilling to step into the light and fight the fair fight. The MCZ must resort to killing innocent men, women, and children in their homes to fight us, for they know no other way. They attempt to spread terror throughout Kingdom and our people, but they will not succeed. They forget the first rule of terrorism: the more innocents you kill, the harder your opposition becomes. We will continue to prosecute the war in Dignania. We will continue to run the MCZ to ground. They will not escape us. They have caused death and heartache too often within our Kingdom, and have inflicted crimes upon our people that no one should have to bear. For that, we will destroy them. In order to help the investigations in Cazniev, Alfacron, Nomar, Claw  Anchorage, Q'Leist, and here in Imperial City, and to prevent a further tragedy from occurring, I am declaring a temporary state of martial law
in those six cities. Civilian government is hereby temporarily suspended, and the Royal Police officers in those cities are hereby placed under the direct authority of the Royal Army. This is a temporary situation only, and martial law will be lifted as soon as the investigations are complete. We will also begin a full-scale manhunt for any and all MCZ members in our Kingdom. They will be found, and they will be tried and punished for their crimes against the people and the Kingdom. Thank you."

    With that, His Royal Majesty returned to the Imperial Palace where the Royal Council and the remnants of the Royal Stek Assembly are now meeting, since the Royal Council Chambers Building was damaged in yesterday's attack. Across the Kingdom today, national flags are flying in mourning, with the black flag of mourning flown above them. HRM has indicated that the flags will continue to be flown in this manner for the next four days in honor of the victims of yesterday's "atrocity." Again, the state of national emergency is still in effect for Eastern
Zartania proper, and a temporary state of martial law has been declared in the six cities involved in yesterday's attacks. We will have more  information for you as it becomes available. I'm Alexia Nestor, reporting from the RNS Broadcast Center.

           [National Emergency Warning sounds in background again]
 

RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

A international affairs report on the current diplomatic situation in Dignania - (1:22PM Local Time)

    RNS will now recap the diplomatic maneuverings involving the warring parties in Dignania.  This morning, the MLFLD government under the leadership of Matthew Cook announced the creation of a new capital in the Dignania.  The new capital will be the Dignanian port city of Kasama.  A briefing given by Deputy Ford, called on all nations to either support and recognize the MLFLD government or stay out of the war and let the people of Dignania decide their fate.  Before today, only the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania had recognized the MLFLD.  That changed today as The Free Caboteniasa Movement recognized the MLFLD as the legitimate government of Dignania.   Miss Emma Johnson, Head of Foreign Affairs Department for the FCM released a statement of recognition and support to the MLFLD.  The message is below:

        "Our enemies: the ethnic Lendian regime in Portescuro, yours: the UBD, and
        everyone's: Djeriga, are currently establishing closer ties. We should cooperate
        to together fight evil oppression! The Free Caboteniasa Movement wants to
        confirm that we see the MLFLD as the only legitimate government of Dignania,
        by establishing formal diplomatic ties between our two governments. We also
        wish to exchange ambassadors with the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania which has
        acted in such an admirable way, supporting the MLFLD in the Dignanian civil war."

    The FCM is involved in it's own civil war against the Republic of Teniasa.  Both movements occupy the same country of Lendian and are at war with each other.  Analysts here at RNS center feel that the FCM recognized MLFLD because their political rivals had recognized the UBD.  The current diplomatic relations between the two parties in Dignania are as follows.  Two countries recognize the MLFLD: The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania and The Free Caboteniasa Movement.   Three countries recognize the UBD:  The Moun Republic of Djeriga, the Republic of Teniasa, and the Republic of Ulanova.  Both the Moun Republic and the Republic of Teniasa openly support the UBD in their war against the KTZ and the MLFLD.  President Dalista of Teniasa has publicly stated that he wishes the UBD good luck in their war against the "foreign intruder."  The situation in the Republic of Ulanova is less clear. President Grodensk has recognized the UBD government and has called for Kingdom of Eastern Zartania to leave Dignania, but he also refused to sell Ulanovan military aircraft to the UBD.  RNS has President Grodensk statement on the war in Dignania below:

        "As a peace loving people, the Republic of Ulanova watches in despair as the fighting in
        Dignania continues to tear an emerging nation asunder. It is tragedy enough that the
        people of Dignania cannot reconcile their differences and learn to live as a single nation,
        but it is a far greater loss to see another nation's willful interference in the grim drama
        playing out in Dignanian borders.

        This is precisely the scenario which Ulanova was spared during her inception, thanks in
        no small part to the efforts of the UNV. It is with full knowledge of our good fortune
        that we beg the government of Eastern Zartania to discontinue her attack on Dignania.
        The action is a futile escalation, only serving to harden the hearts of men and women on
        all sides and possibly sabotaging the hope of ever seeing these people into a better future.

        The Republic of Ulanova stands behind Christiana's calls for a ceasefire, and offers our
        capitol city of Ulana as a location for peace talks."

    And now there is a new development within Ulanova.  Early this morning, Bertand Dausselier from the Ulanova Broadcast Service reported that there is a political disagreement between the Ulanovan Congress and President's cabinet over government policy dealing with the UBD. RNS will now bring you Dausselier's report in its entirety:

******************************************************************************************
UBS News Report - (2:07AM Local Time)

Dausselier: Good evening, I'm Bertand Dausselier and this is the Ulanova Broadcast Service's news update for the hour. The first session of the Ulanovan Congress broke on a harsh note this evening, as suspicion was cast on the political allegiance of President Grodensk's acting defense secretary, Leonid Rostovicz. Leaked documents uncovered by the Conservative Party show Rostovicz arguing in favour of a proposal to sell eighteen fighter planes to the Communist government in Dignania.

    Dignania is currently at war with Eastern Zartania, a condition which precludes the sale of the craft under the Congress approved guidelines for the sale. Rostovicz is quoted in the documents, high level cabinet memos, as saying that withholding the craft from Dignania was "the ridiculous triumph of anemic high principles over economic realities for the Republic" and that selling the planes to the Communists was "favorable...a good thing for both us and them."

    Conservative party leader and Congressional Representative Yuri Chekotsk contends that the documents prove Rostovicz has Communist sympathies and has no place in government of a democratic nation. Grodensk addressed the accusations from his office this afternoon.

Grodensk's Statement:  "Leonid Rostovicz is a decent, capable man who I am proud to have serving in my cabinet. I do not always agree with his opinions, and this is one issue upon which we were split. However, Leonid is loyal to Ulanova first and foremost; I always expect him to put the Republic's best interests first. We could not ask for a better public servant, and I will not withdraw him from my cabinet selections."

    "How it is that private documents from the upper echelons of government were leaked to the public is, to me, the more scandalous issue of the day. A UNPD investigation is being conducted; we will find and catch whomever is perpetrating such a treasonous act as undermining the government."

Dausselier: Chekotsk declined to comment on how he had obtained the memos. The allegations could not come at a worse time for the Grodensk administration; Congress is expected to approve Grodensk's cabinet selections by a free vote on Monday, March 22nd. The Conservatives are calling on their fellow members to reject Rostovicz as Defense Secretary.

    The debate over Rostovicz is also adding to the furor over Grodensk's unexpected recognition of the Communist regime in Dignania. Congressional members are outraged that the president moved to open diplomatic relations with the beleaguered former Lendian republic without consulting them."

******************************************************************************************
    RNS would like to thank Bertand Dausselier for his report and we will update the public about the situation in Ulanova when more information is available.

          The rest of the nations of Vexillium have refused to acknowledge either party in Dignania and have claimed neutrality.  The Kingdom of Christiana has led the calls for a cease fire and for a UNV peacekeeping force to be put in Dignania. Both the UBD and MLFLD have ignored this call and the KTZ has made in clear that they will not accept any UNV forces in Dignania in what they consider a internal matter because of the MCZ. The MLFLD government also gave its full support to the KTZ's actions, which includes the KTZ's declaration of a 400 mile war zone and the naval blockade around Dignania.  There is also a great fear among Vexillium's governments about the growing threat of terrorism.  The recent downing of a Christiana plane and the wide spread terrorist attacks in Eastern Zartania has led governments around Vexillium to increase security.

    Another issue circulating throughout Vexillium's Diplomatic circles is the UBD's accusation of atrocities committed by the KTZ during the Battle of Ahmaden.  The UBD claim that a KTZ battle group entered Ahmaden Bay and sank ships full with civilians.  Eastern Zartania completely denies these allegations and the MLFLD calls them lies.  The Kingdom of Christiana has offered to send neutral observers for verification of atrocities. Prime Minister John Joseph has offered to send the CMS Hope and the CMS Faith hospital ships to help civilians and to verify the atrocities.  So far the UBD and MLFLD has not commented on Christiana's offer, but the KTZ has released a statement addressing current issues involving the war in Dignania.  Meanwhile, Operation Turn-About continues in Dignania.  The Statement is below:

******************************************************************************************
On behalf of His Royal Majesty, King Bruno II, I bid greetings to the Nations of Vexillium.

    Although the current terrorist attacks within our Kingdom have us somewhat distracted at present, we have very closely been watching the changing situation concerning diplomatic recognition of the parties in the Dignanian War. We would like to take this time to reiterate the policy of the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania. Any government who recognizes the UBD will not be recognized by Eastern Zartania. Any government who makes themselves a friend of the UBD, automatically becomes a friend of the MCZ, and thereby an enemy of Eastern Zartania. We will not, however, attack any other state unless they attack us or our people first. We are content to keep the war contained in Dignania, and have to desire to see it spread elsewhere. Also, please be aware that the Imperial Navy of Eastern Zartania now holds almost complete naval superiority in the war zone around Dignania, and that we have established a submarine blockade around the country. Any ship straying into that war zone without prior authorization from the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania will be sunk without warning. We have issued several warnings already to this effect, and this will be our last. Do not attempt to interfere in this war, and do not attempt to violate our blockade. We must be allowed to carry this war to its conclusion without inside interference. We look forward to a hopefully quick end to this bloody war.

May Honor and Glory grace the Nations of Vexillium for Eternity.

              Lord Mikeil Varishnikov
              KTZ Ambassador to the UNV
              on behalf of His Royal Majesty, King Bruno II vun Q'Leist

******************************************************************************************
 
 

March 20-23 299AP
 
 

NATIONAL EMERGENCY MESSAGE FROM THE KTZ






A report on the terrorist Attacks in the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania for March 21 - (1:28AM Local Time)

[National Emergency Warning sounds in background, fade to RNS anchorwoman]

    Good evening, I'm Alexia Nestor. The state of national emergency declared last Thursday across the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania is still in effect tonight. The recovery of bodies from the scenes of last week's terrorist bombings was completed over the weekend. Almost all of the victims have been identified, and the names of those killed in the blasts will be released later today on KTZ-TV and will be posted in all Royal Mail Service offices. If you have family members that you believe may have been killed or injured in the attacks, the Ministry of the Interior has established a special number that you can call to place your inquiry. That number is R-526-39-11732. The Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Public Information & Customs have also just recently announced the final tally of those killed in the blasts. In the city of Alfacron in the Skylands stek, 267 bodies have been recovered from the wreckage in the City Center. Another 456 were injured in the bombing, 18 of which remain in critical condition at Alfacron Stek Hospital. In Cazniev, Guldavya, the death toll has stopped at 203, with an additional 359 injured in the attack. The city of Claw Anchorage in the stek of Subaria was hit the hardest in the terrorist bombing spree. A total of 291 were killed in Claw Anchorage, and another 576 were injured. The high numbers of casualties in Claw Anchorage have been attributed to the hour of the attack and to the actual construction of the city. Built in 1043 while still under the Gronkian Seizure, the city's streets are very narrow and winding, with tall thin buildings flanking the streets. This architectural factor has been implicated in causing possibly 100 more deaths than should have occurred by collapsing several of the buildings upon the crowds in the narrow street below. In Nomar, the capital city of the stek of Nomar and a large resort city, only ten people were killed, as the blast occurred at a time of day when most tourists were either in their rooms, at the casino, or out on the lake. Forty-seven others were injured in Nomar, primarily from flying glass. This number is greatly reduced from the original estimate of 200, due primarily to the fact that investigators originally thought that the bomb had been detonated in front of a hotel. The Hotel Miztala was actually abandoned three years ago. In the city of Q'Leist in the stek of Drilastia, there were no fatalities and only three people were injured. In Imperial City,
however, only yards away from the Imperial Palace, four government officials were killed and nine others injured in a mortar attack on the Royal Council Chambers Building by MCZ militants. Those killed were the
assemblymen from the steks of Dragoonta, Northern Peninsula, Skylands, and Subaria, the traditional stronghold of the MCZ. The only uninjured person in the room was the Constable of the Assembly, Dame Judy Sorrell. All told, 775 people were killed in the terrorist assaults Thursday afternoon, and another 1,450 were injured. No warnings were received prior to the bombings, and the dead are mostly women and children who were out shopping at the time of the attacks.

    This is the first real act of terrorism on Eastern Zartanian territory since the years of the Terramarc Oppression, which only ended last May. Clean-up of the wreckage in the six cities commenced yesterday as investigators finished collecting what evidence they could find. It is expected to take several weeks before all the wreckage is removed from the bomb sites. In the meantime, martial law remains in effect in the cities of Alfacron, Cazniev, Claw Anchorage, Imperial City, and Nomar. The martial law decree was lifted in Q'Leist early yesterday morning. A curfew of 20:00 ZST is being enforced, and movement is restricted to within four city blocks of one's residence. The Royal Stek Militia, having been activated with the martial law decree, have established roadblocks at key intersections and have cordoned off the sites of the bomb blasts. His Royal Majesty has stated that the martial law decree is a temporary measure only, and will be withdrawn as soon as clean-up has been completed. In the Royal Council today, HRM called upon General Erik vun Orcton, Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Army, to devise a new internal security plan to better protect the citizens of the Kingdom from falling victim to this type of fanatical attack in the future. For now, however, the state of national emergency remains in effect, though sources within the Royal Government have indicated that it may be withdrawn as early as tomorrow afternoon, except in specific areas of the Kingdom. To recap, the final casualty numbers from last week's terrorist attacks have been released by the Ministry of Public Information & Customs. The names of those killed in the blasts will be posted later today at Royal Mail Service offices around the Kingdom. Clean-up has begun at the sites of the attacks, and martial law remains in effect in five of the six cities that were targeted by the MCZ. The state of national emergency is still in effect, but could be lifted as early as tomorrow. We will bring you the latest news about the continuing investigations has the Ministry of Public Information & Customs releases it. For now, I'm Alexia Nestor, reporting from the RNS Broadcast Center in Imperial City.

           [National Emergency Warning sounds in the background, fade to black]
 
 

KTZ Military Update for March 22 - (9:32PM Local Time)

 [Military briefing conducted at Imperial Naval Headquarters, Claw Anchorage, by Fleet Admiral Indurii and Commander-General Vogle.]

INDURII: I would like to apologize for the delay in getting timely military updates to the press and the people. As you undoubtedly know, the MCZ elected last week to respond to the Kingdom's active military intervention in the Dignanian War by detonating several terrorist bombs across Eastern Zartania. The result was more than 700 innocent men, women, and children dead, and over a thousand more injured. This has not shaken the resolve of our Kingdom one bit. The MCZ must realize that our government and our people cannot be intimidated. However, due to the bomb that exploded here in Claw Anchorage, only blocks away from this building, new security measures had to be put in place before this briefing could be conducted. Now that those measures are in place, we can proceed.

    Since our last briefing on Thursday there have been new developments in our war effort. Friday, flights of A-4s and F-11s from the carrier Warbird provided aerial support to the MLFLD counter-offensive in and around the Rokariyan Mountains. Surgical strikes were conducted against UBD pillboxes, anti-aircraft positions, and armored strongpoints. Two A-4s were lost to enemy SAMs, and their crews were not seen to eject. Meanwhile, flights of Air Force F-11s flying from Chrihan Island provided air cover and engaged in several long-range exchanges with UBD fighters. No losses were incurred on either side. Saturday was much the same, as the air groups from HMIS Warbird conducted precision strikes along the front lines in continued support of the MLFLD counter-offensive. These strikes were coordinated with two 8-bomber raids flown from Haddock Cove. Commander-General Vogle will now brief you on the Air Force raids.

VOGLE: Thank you, Admiral. As Fleet Admiral Indurii mentioned, Saturday's operations were occurred in conjunction with naval air raids along the front. The B-8 "Condor" bombers, arriving over target, were
escorted by elements of the 3rd Fighter Squadron based on Chrihan Island. Once again, the B-8s of the 2nd Bomber Squadron targeted the Trinity Passes in an attempt to destroy any UBD-MCZ units that were
falling back from the MLFLD attack or were moving forward to help reinforce the front. A flight of F-11 "Hawk" fighters proceeded in ahead of the primary bomber attacks in order to eliminate enemy SAM batteries. Upon detecting a positive missile lock from an enemy radar, the F-11s immediately launched their radar-seeking Air-to-Surface Missiles (ASMs). In this manner, 9 enemy SAM batteries were eliminated, allowing the bomber raids a better chance of success, and a larger margin of safety. During the bombing runs, 5 UBD Echo fighters appeared over target threatening the bombers. The escorting F-11 fighters immediately broke formation and proceeded to engage the enemy. The enemy fighters launched their AAMs before our fighters could engage them. The first priority of our fighters, therefore, was to knock down the UBD missiles before they could hit the bombers. Using their own Striker AAMs and their 20mm cannons, the F-11s were able to knock down all but two missiles. One of the two missiles impacted a bomber directly, and the B-8 was destroyed with no survivors. The second missile was a near miss on a second bomber, knocking out one of its engines and damaging the wing. The F-11 fighters then engaged the enemy fighters while the bombers attacked the target. The F-11s launched their own AAMs at the Echo fighters, scoring two immediate kills. The three remaining enemy fighters fled, diving to the ground to avoid the pursuit of our own fighters. One Echo was subsequently destroyed by an MLFLD hand-held SAM. After dropping their bombs on the target, the remaining bombers immediately left the area for Haddock Cove. The damaged bomber, unable to make it back to Haddock Cove missing an engine and with a damaged wing, was forced to land at Chrihan Island with the fighters of the 3rd Fighter Squadron. The other bombers were refueled en route by four TC-4 long-range tanker airplanes. Immediate damage estimates indicate that possibly two UBD regiments were hit in the attack. At this time, however, the exact extent of the damage is unknown. On Sunday, the Royal Zartanian Air Force received a request from Lieutenant General Kenneth Calcaterra, MLFLD commander of the Eastern Sector, for the UBD army units in and around the city of Demieville to be bombed. After consulting with RZAF headquarters, it was decided to comply with the request. At 09:45 Sunday morning, the  bombers of the 2nd Bomber Squadron and the F-11s of the 3rd Fighter Squadron arrived on target over Demieville. Immediately prior to the arrival on target, a flight of A-4 bombers from the carrier Warbird struck the aerial defenses outside Demieville in an effort to damage the resources that the UBD could use to protect its troops from Eastern Zartanian bombers. Arriving over Demieville, four bombers each immediately proceeded north and south of the city to hit UBD and MCZ units, while the remainder attacked the military quarter of the city itself. The two primary targets were the city armory and the military barracks in the southeastern section of the city. Damage estimates have not yet been reported, but we feel confident that the objectives were met and the targets destroyed. I would also like to emphasize that maximum precaution was taken to stay away from the civilian areas of the city. As of 23:00 last night, permission was granted to begin to transfer of more RZAF squadrons from bases within the Kingdom to Haddock Cove to be deployed over Dignania. Admiral.

INDURII: As Commander-General Vogle indicated, bombers from the carrier Warbird helped support the assault on Demieville yesterday morning, and raids in support of the MLFLD units on the front line continued throughout the day. Around 16:30 yesterday afternoon the first supply convoy from Eastern Zartania arrived in the Dignanian port of Kasama and began to unload. Unloading continued throughout the night and all day today. The ships are expected to depart for home waters sometime within the next two days. Also arriving on station in Dignanian waters are the ships of Task Force 7 which escorted the convoy. Composed of the guided missile cruiser HMIS Lieutenant, the destroyers HMIS Orkton Battlecharger and HMIS King Fredrik, and the frigates HMIS Seawolf, HMIS Cutlass, and HMIS Persistence, TF 7 has been ordered to take up station along the edge of the 400-mile war zone around Dignania to act as picket ships and to intercept any ships before they enter the zone. A destroyer and two frigates have also been dispatched from TF 1/3 to escort a merchant ship carrying the new diplomatic representative from the Maritimian Islands to Dignania. It remains to be seen exactly how long this naval force will remain on station off Dignania, but I feel certain that we can begin withdrawing some units within the next two
weeks. Meanwhile, the submarine blockade continues to be enforced. Friday another UBD-flagged 15,000-ton coastal freighter was sunk attempting to enter the port of Naka, and another was damaged by a torpedo hit 100 miles south of Brokenburg. Saturday a 6,000-ton fishing trawler was sunk off York Beach. The ship was flying an MCZ flag and was believed to have radio equipment on board to report on possible submarine contacts. This evening, just two hours ago, a submarine off the coast of Dignania conducted Eastern Zartania's first-ever cruise missile attack. From a depth of 150 feet, the submarine launched four SSM cruise missiles at UBD military camps located around Carlsbad and Montpelier. Again, we do not yet have any damage estimates, but we will bring you those as soon as possible. Also, the 34th Regiment Royal Infantry is still currently fighting in Dignania. Under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Kevin Fernalld, the 34th Regiment has been placed in the front lines in the Eastern Sector near Demieville. More information about the regiment will be released as it is made available to us. Currently a large convoy of troops and supplies is being assembled in Claw Anchorage to help reinforce the MLFLD, and will depart later this week. This concludes this briefing, thank you.

              [This broadcast cleared by the Ministry of Public Information & Customs]
 
 

RNS BROADCAST CENTER:
 
 

Operation Turn-About





War Situation in Dignania as of Tuesday 23 – (1:30AM Local Time)

[News briefing carried out at MLFLD headquarters from the city of Kasama, Dignania.  MLFLD General Dale Webster will explain the current military situation in Dignania.]

    “Good evening Ladies and Gentlemen of the press, I here to brief you on the current events in our war to free Dignania from the UBD and MCZ.  I’m sure that you all have read the reports given by my counterparts, Fleet Admiral Indurii and Commander-General Vogle, over four hours ago.  In their briefing, they explained the KTZ’s involvement in the current military operations here in Dignania.

    Now before I begin, on behalf of MLFLD, I want to thank Eastern Zartania for their continued support in our war effort.  MLFLD understands the tremendous pressure the Kingdom is under at this moment.  They are facing extreme criticism from nations around Vexillium and terrorists attacks within their own country.  The easiest course of action for them would have been to retreat from their commitment with us and go home and take care of their own problems, but they didn’t.  In fact, the KTZ continues to send their forces in harm’s way to Dignania.  Their ships continue to sail towards our country filled with vital military equipment for the MLFLD’s war effort.  I state now that Dignania will not forget the sacrifices Eastern Zartania has made.

    Last week, MLFLD launched Operation Turn-About.  The plan was to stop the UBD breakthrough in the east and then push them back across the Rokariyn Mountains.  Three divisions of thirty thousand men launched Operation Turn-About with a lightning strike along the UBD’s left flank just south of Demieville.  I can reveal now that entire design for the operation.  Last week after the UBD break though the Trinity Passes and drove toward the Northern Plain, General Cook and I worked out a new strategy to meet with this threat in the east.  Once it was determined that our forces could not hold at their current strength.  The idea developed to let the UBD push north, but only in a certain direction.

    They drove out of the Rokariyn Mountains and onto the Northern Plain late Sunday night.  By Monday March 15, UBD forces attacked and captured the city of Demieville.  On the next day, UBD continued their drive north towards Mermosillo.  On that very same day March 16 while the UBD forces drove north, Operation Dragon-fire commenced.  For the next two days, planes and naval forces from the KTZ launched continuous attacks against the UBD, which was meant to confuse and break up their offensive.  These attacks were a complete success.  The UBD became listless and uncoordinated as their field commanders attempted to find out what happened and who attacked.

    This when the MLFLD forces under the personal command of General Cook launched Operation Turn-About.  As I said before, the UBD drive into the Northern Plain had to go a certain direction.  MLFLD forces facing the enemy in the Rokariyn Mountains could have held out longer then they did.  The problem was that once the UBD broke through those defenses there was nothing left to stop them. There would have been no MLFLD forces large enough to stop the breakthrough and we knew that if the UBD were able to fan out in different directions then we would have been defeated.  The plan called for the UBD to drive straight north along a path of our choosing.  You see, just before the enemy broke through into the Northern Plain, MLFLD forces in the east were shifted away and re-positioned perpendicular to the front line where the UBD would most likely attack.  The whole maneuver is called refusing the line.  Once completed, the maneuver formed our battle line into an L.  These troops proceeded to set up defensive positions along the suspected UBD’s axis of advance.  We only left a division in the front lines facing the UBD.

    As expected, the UBD attacked this lone division and our soldiers fell back north.  The UBD poured into breech caused by the retreating division, but instead of fanning out to the west they hit the refused line and were stopped dead in their tracks. The UBD tried to push west, but to no avail, but the north was open to attack.  So they followed the path of less resistance and attacked north.  By Tuesday, March 16, UBD forces were north of Demieville driving.  This is when Operation Dragon-Fire was launched causing the desired effect.  With the refused line holding steady along the UBD’s left flank, a reserve force under the personal command of General Cook attacked from the direction of Mansa on March 17.  This reserve force was made up of three divisions of thirty thousand men taken from the Ambrosio Defensive Line further west.  This force also included the 1,000 soldiers of the 34th Regiment Royal Infantry from Eastern Zartania.  Thus began Operation Turn-About.  The plan called for the reserve force to strike the UBD left flank south of the city Demieville in attempt to breakthrough to the ocean, thus cutting off the UBD forces in the Northern Plain.

    I can report tonight that after about a week’s heavy fighting, Operation Turn-About was successful.  The UBD have been pushed back into the mountains and sizeable force has been bottled up in Demieville.  With the combination of land and air attacks, the MLFLD with the help of the KTZ was able to stop the UBD’s drive towards the city of Mermosillo.  By Saturday March 20, UBD forces were retreating south towards Demieville and the mountains.  Intense fighting continued throughout the weekend as enemy forces tried to counterattack along their exposed left flank.  The KTZ aircraft pounded UBD positions in around Demieville.  Reports have filtered through to our headquarters that indicate the KTZ’s B-8 bomber strike on Demieville inflicted heavy losses. UBD forces attempted to retreat out of the Demieville pocket, but were hampered by KTZ air attacks and the damaged Trinity Passes.  Last night around 11:00pm, UBD troops made one final attempt to push back the MLFLD troops attacking their flank.  I have to honestly say that we were overrun in some areas.  Fighting was intense and confusing.  At one point, several thousand UBD and MLFLD soldiers were engaged in hand to hand combat over a possession of a dry riverbed.  Reports are still coming in, but I can say that overall we held fast and our soldiers preformed with valor and a selfless devotion to duty.  By this morning, the UBD counterattack was beaten and they were retreating south trying to escape the trap. At 4:30 PM Local Time today, MLFLD forces reached the coast and completed the encirclement.  Unfortunately, most of the UBD troops were able to escape south into the Rokariyn Mountains, but ten to twenty thousand UBD soldiers are reported still trapped in Demieville.  Hopefully in a few days we will able to clean them out.

    Once we reached the coast, MLFLD soldiers pushed back into the mountains trying to reach the Pascal River before the UBD could dig in.  Just before I arrived for this news conference, a battlefield report indicated that our forces had reached the Pascal River in some areas, but resistance was increasing along the front.  This concludes the successful completion of Operation Turn-About.  The hope is that sometime soon the MLFLD will be able to push south into the Central Valley, but until we will keep fighting.

    At this moment, I would like to announce the creation of three new sector commands along the Ambrosio Defensive line: the Western Sector is commanded by Lt-General Lance Tolken, the Central Sector is commanded by the Duke of Avion, and the Eastern Sector is commanded by Lt-General Kenneth Calcalterra.  As of tonight, the Western and Central Sector’s commands are holding along the Ambrosio Line against the UBD.  Indications from the front point to the UBD fortifying the hills and ridges just out side this line after repeated attempts to breakthrough failed.  The Eastern Sector line is in the process of being re-established as I speak.  This concludes tonight’s briefing, thank you."

Legend for the Above Battle Map
Green-MLFLD frontline and Just Cause counterattack
Red-UBD advance into the Northern Plain
Purple-MLFLD refused line that kept the UBD from turn west
 
 

UBD announces the start of the three year Betterment Plan as of March 23 - (3:33PM Local Time)

Greetings Vexillium,

    The UBD announces the first three year Betterment Plan for Dignania. The plan was developed by the People's Revolutionary Council to help foster growth and happiness for the citizens of Dignania. In three years, Dignania will increase industrial productivity by 25% and farming by 15%. The Plan is as follows:

Effective immediately:

 1. All private industry and business is nationalized and belongs to the state which will from now on administer them to according to the needs of the state and people. There will be no industry barons controlling prices and making money at the expense of the people. The Ministry of Public Works will responsible for running industry. This includes, food processing, farming, mining, farm equipment, and textiles. The goal is in three years to increase productivity in all these areas, especially mining.

2. Collectivization of all farms and ranches throughout Dignania. No one person will run or control these Collective communes and force people to work for slave wages. Committees will be set up from local towns and villages to run these farming communes. The goal is to increase output while making sure everone has a job and a home.

3. As of these moment, the People's Revolutionary Council runs all services, including police, firemen, medical, legal, and media. These will be administered by the Ministry of Information & Education. The reason behind this is have a uniform code of justice and opportunity for all. No one will be denied medical or legal help because of finanical or ethnic status. Equal representative for everyone.

4. The Betterment plan will go forward even as the UBD patroits are fighting the MLFLD. The plan is to help all citizens of Dignania by allowing this country to become self sufficient.

              Otho Ferrier
              Vice-President
              People's Revolutionary Council
              Foreign Minister for the UBD
 
 

RNS BROADCAST CENTER:

In the Ambrosio Defense Line, Central Sector, Rokariyn Mountains on March 23(4:00PM Local Time)

     “I’m here along one of the ridges making up part of the Ambrosio defensive line in the Central Sector.  The MLFLD soldiers manning this part of the line affectingly refer to it as Sad Hill.  It is a collection of interlocking trenches and dugouts surrounded by fields of barbed wire and mines.  Bunkers and machinegun nests dot the line every hundred feet.  The trenches are built into the crest of the ridge, which provides a clear view of the surrounding hills and ridges.  Men caked with dirt peer through tiny holes in between sandbags, looking for any sign of the UBD.  A small wooden plank allows the men to keep their feet out of the dirt, but that is little comfort, as the dirt seems to follow you everywhere.  No one dares to poke his head above the sandbags for fear of being shot. The soldiers scan south for the enemy who is just over the next ridge.  They watch and see the UBD digging in and preparing similar trenches like this one. Both sides are digging in for the long haul. On the reverse side of the ridge are several man made pits holding mortars.  The men in those pits stand ready, day or night, for any sign of attack.

    Just north of here is another ridge with another trench. The Ambrosio line is made up of a series of five trenches.  Currently, I am reporting from what is called a shock trench.  This trench gets its name for its job.  It is supposed to absorb the shock of a UBD attack.  If this trench falls, the overall line is still intact and the MLFLD soldiers in the reserve trench, the next ridge over, can immediately counterattack and reclaim the shock trench.  This set up is the same up and down the Ambrosio Line

    Over the last week, UBD tried to breakthrough this part of the line.  They used artillery, aircraft, and even mass infantry to try to breakthrough, but to no avail. The line remained intact and in control of the MLFLD forces.
For the last day in a half, fighting in this part of the Rokariyn Mountains has been limited to occasional shelling and a few nighttime raids.  Everyone is tired.  For over three weeks, these men have been fighting non-stop. Their faces are drawn. The dust accentuates into the lines of their faces and giving them a hollowed look. No one talks about home or love ones.  They are tired of war, but everyone knows that before they can go home they must defeat the UBD. They have all told me that they would rather die then surrender.

I’m currently staying with Company A of the 20th Regiment.  Captain Tim Driver commands the company, while Dennis Khan who was promoted from Major to Colonel commands the 20th Regiment.  This is Sam Young, ChenTV, reporting from Ambrosio Line in Dignania
 

 Royal Press Conference for Eastern Zartania on March 23 - (11:15PM Local Time)

[Press conference given in the main conference room of the Ministry of Foreign Relations Building, Imperial City. Taped at 3:00PM ZST.]

(About 50 reporters are seated in the room. A podium is located at the front of the room set against a red velvet backdrop. The Eastern Zartanian national flag is mounted to the right of the podium, and the Foreign Minister's flag is located to the left. Two dark blue-shirted guards stand on either side of the podium. The stamp of boots signals the guards snapping to attention as a small group of dignitaries enters the room. A blue-grey suited man steps up to the podium.)

YOUNG: (clears his throat) Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen of the press, and welcome to our press conference. I, of course, am Randall Young, Foreign Minister of the Kingdom. Behind me are John Draelik senior foreign military analyst; Carolyn Lione, senior advisor for Cislendian affairs; and Taria Garvey, advisor on Delgamian political evolution. All three of these individuals have been instrumental in formulating our current foreign policy in regards to Dignania. I will be giving a brief prepared statement, after which I will accept your questions.

    The active military involvement of the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania in the Dignanian Civil War has brought our Kingdom into conflict with a good many of our friends across Vexillium, and has alienated us from others. However, contrary to popular belief, and contrary to the propaganda that the UBD and their allies would have the world believe, we did not enter into this conflict lightly. It was with the gravest deliberations and the greatest concern for the well-being of our servicemen and women that we undertook this intervention. For the past three centuries, we have been an isolationist people. Since the time of the Gronkian Seizure we have never strayed far from our borders, and have opened diplomatic relations only with those whom we considered close friends. We have been an inward-looking nation; looking to subdue our own internal differences and difficulties. King Johanin changed that, however, when he asked the Republic of Terramarc, the largest military power in this area, to protect his throne for him. Thus began our subjugation to Terramarc rule; a subjugation that only ended last year after several years of bloody guerilla combat to free ourselves. Since then we have learned that our fate is linked to the rest of Vexillium. If we wish to avoid the mistake of the past, we must embrace other states. In doing so, we must also be willing to fight and die in foreign territory to help others and to help ourselves. Since the late 1270s, the Movement for a Communist Zartania has been a constant thorn in the side of our Kingdom. Since their inception, the MCZ has constantly called for the violent overthrow of the Royal Government, the execution of the Royal Family, the aristocracy, and those connected with the Royal Government, and the institution of what they call "the dictatorship of the peasantry." And they have attempted to put their ideology into practice and lead the people by their example. In their less than one hundred year history, the MCZ has been directly responsible for the assassinations of eighteen nobles, twenty-one government officials, the mass executions of eleven noble families. They have attempted to commit regicide twelve times, and have claimed responsibility for killing over two thousand people through terrorist attacks like those they committed last Thursday. The MCZ is a direct and volatile threat to the internal security of this Kingdom. Any group that would wantonly slaughter our citizens, massacre our oldest Houses, and attempt to degrade and destroy the bulwark of our culture must be eliminated. As an absolute monarchy, the reigning monarch is of vital importance to our Kingdom, our People, and our Government. If the MCZ should ever succeed in assassinating our monarch, they would do irreparable harm to our Kingdom. We cannot allow this to happen. For the past seventy years we have been attempting to deal with the problem of the MCZ by exiling its members from the Kingdom to other states around Vexillium. As evidenced by the recent troubles in Dignania and elsewhere around the world, this is not a feasible alternative. The MCZ members, after being exiled, set themselves up in other states around Vexillium, and began to create a power base from which to operate. They reached out their revolutionary hand to other communist organizations, and they found a willing partner in the United Brotherhood of Dignania. With the logistical, political, monetary, and military support of the MCZ, the UBD began to assemble its own following and train its own revolutionary fanatics. Then, after the withdrawal of the Free Confederacy from Dignania, the UBD and its MCZ allies struck the first blow of the Dignanian Civil War. If the UBD is allowed to win the war and establish Dignania as a communist state, then the MCZ has won its first victory. The MCZ will use Dignania and the UBD as an example to the other revolutionary parties of Vexillium to overthrow their own governments with MCZ help. And most threatening of all to our Kingdom, the MCZ will then have a stable base from which to operate, and from which to launch more and more terrorist strikes against our people. In time, the MCZ, with the help of other groups, could even attempt an  invasion of Eastern Zartania from Dignania. As shown by last week's terrorist attacks, the MCZ is still a very real threat to our Kingdom, and a threat which deserves our attention. After receiving the plea of the Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania earlier this month, His Royal Majesty, with the full backing of the Royal Government, elected to use this opportunity to once and for all put an end to the MCZ threat to this Kingdom. With this end in mind, to protect our own Kingdom and to protect the other countries of Vexillium from falling prey to such terror and oppression, the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania elected to join in the fight in Dignania to stop the UBD and the MCZ, and to restore the rightful government of Dignania to power. The government and people of Eastern Zartania also feel very strongly toward the people of Dignania, as our Kingdom accepted many of their people who were exiled in the early years before the institution of the Free Confederacy. Thus, we are in the fight in Dignania. Eastern Zartanian men and women are fighting and dying in Dignania, but they are fighting and dying to protect our Kingdom and our way of life from those who would kill us and take it from us. Now, are there any questions?

REPORTER 1: Minister, minister! Cynthia Torqueman, reporting for ISN. What is the Ministry's reaction to Djeriga's recent recognition of the UBD as the legitimate government of Dignania?

YOUNG: The stance of the Royal Government toward Djeriga has never changed. We do not and will not recognize Djeriga as an independent state. Their government supports and actually advocates revolution world-wide. They have proven themselves to be underhanded, lying, terrorist thieves, and we will not recognize them. As such, their recognition and support of the UBD makes no impression or impact on us whatsoever, and probably even hurts the UBD's cause.

REPORTER 2: Sir Randall, what is the Ministry's position toward those countries of Vexillium that have requested that the Kingdom withdraw from the war and leave Dignania to the Dignanians?

YOUNG: First, what's your name, sir?

REPORTER 2: Oh, sorry! Darel Mason, Imperial Palace Times-Record.

YOUNG: Well, Darel, as I said, the Kingdom is committed to carrying this war to its conclusion and eliminating the MCZ as a threat to our internal security. We will not bow to the international pressure. This is an internal matter. If any other country were facing the same kind of threat, we would allow them the opportunity to neutralize that threat. We don't want to see our Kingdom overthrown, and I personally can't understand why anyone would want to prevent us from making sure that doesn't happen. It's practically advocating an MCZ revolution inside the Kingdom. I know that that's not what the other governments are really saying, but they have to keep in mind that we're fighting for our survival here, too.

REPORTER 3: Minister Young! Julie Dendty, KTZ-TV news. What is the Kingdom's response to the fact that several of the newer and emerging states around Vexillium have recognized the UBD?

YOUNG: I'm going to let Ms. Lione handle this one. Carolyn?

LIONE: The Kingdom's policy on recognizing new governments is, and always has been, that we wait for a period of time before extending recognition. This allows our government the chance to analyze the situation in the new state, and to determine 1) if its government is stable, 2) if the state can defend and sustain itself, and 3) if the government truly has the support of the people and the military. Once the period has passed and all qualifications are met, then the Ministry of Foreign Relations will offer recognition and diplomatic relations to the new state. We do make exceptions, however, for those countries that contact us first requesting relations and can demonstrate stability. As none of the new states that recognize the UBD have passed this observation period yet, their siding with the UBD is of little consequence to us right now, and only hurts their chances of future recognition by Eastern Zartania.

REPORTER 1: Cynthia Torqueman again, Minister. Are the rumors true that the government of Estontetso has offered to open relations with Eastern Zartania even after recognizing the UBD? And if so, how does this affect your ministry's response?

YOUNG: First of all, Cynthia, I'd like to know where you got the information. So far, that hasn't been released to the public or the press yet by the Ministry of Public Information & Customs. I'd like to have a talk with you afterward this conference. But yes, Estontetso has approached us about opening relations. Unfortunately, due to our policy of not opening relations with anyone who recognizes the UBD and their extension of such recognition prior to our responding to them, we cannot and will not open diplomatic relations. We realize that this could adversely affect our future relationship with them, but we stand by our belief that anyone recognizing the UBD as the legitimate government of Dignania allies themselves with the MCZ and therefore advocates revolution within our own country. So relations with Estontetso are out of the question while they recognize the UBD.

REPORTER 4: David Jones, reporting for RNS. Sir Randall, several countries including Christiana have been calling for armed UNV intervention to stop the bloodshed in Dignania. What is the government's stance on this subject?

YOUNG: As a member of the UNV with full voting privileges, the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania would be voting against any such motion that came before the Assembly. I can also assure you that we have several friendly states that I feel sure would not cast their votes against us. But, should such a motion be passed, the fact remains that the UNV troops would have to actually get on the ground in Dignania before they could do anything. Our naval blockade is still in effect, and we have complete naval superiority around Dignania, and complete air superiority to within 50 miles of the coast. No one is going to violate that blockade. If it means firing on UNV ships, we'll do it. I hope we don't have to, but a UNV intervention would mean that the MCZ would have an opportunity to escape and continue their attacks on the Kingdom from elsewhere, and we can't allow that to happen. Plus, I think the UNV troops would have difficulty getting on the ground anyway. The UBD is not about to let them just walk into southern Dignania, and the MLFLD has said repeatedly that they won't accept a settlement that allows the UBD any kind of power. So I personally don't think the threat of a UNV intervention has any weight behind it.

REPORTER 5: Jennifer Wenricht, KTZ Armed Forces Radio. This question is directed to Mr. Draelik. Are the reports that the UBD is being supplied covertly through Novoyoakes true?

DRAELIK: Um, Jennifer, I can't really comment on that at this moment.  All I can say for sure is that I don't think the government in Northern Gronk would really allow one of their colonies to be used to supply a faction in a regional civil war.

REPORTER 5: Why is that, Mr. Draelik?

DRAELIK: Because, Ms. Wenricht, if the MLFLD were to discover that the UBD was being supplied covertly through Novoyoakes, they would most likely try to plug that avenue of supply. If that happened, then a contained civil war would spill over into the neighboring territory, and would threaten to engulf all of Delgamia. And I know that's not what the Gronkian government is looking for.

YOUNG: Last question now. Yes, you in the red sweater.

REPORTER 6: Dan Randall, sir, Subarian Independent Press. I've been told by sources in the government that a ship full of Whitlamite communists are feared to have landed in Novoyoakes and joined up with the UBD army. Is there any truth to this, and if so, why did the Imperial Navy apparently do nothing to stop it?

YOUNG: Mr. Randall, like Mrs. Torqueman, I don't know where you get your stories, but it's obviously not from the Ministry of Public Information & Customs. I'd remind you that Subarian Independent Press is currently operating under a Royal Charter, and that requires you to get your information only from sources approved by the Ministry of Public Information & Customs. Performing end-runs like this, and attempting to get secrets from government officials could be considered treasonous, and will definitely get your Royal Charter revoked. But, in answer to your question, Mr. Randall, I don't have information about any such infiltration by Whitlamite communists. But as soon as I do, you'll be the first to know. Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. This concludes the press conference.

(Foreign Minister Young and his entourage leave the room to the shouted questions of reporters and the flash of cameras.)
 

March 24, 299AP
 
 

The 34th Royal Infantry in action

In the Mountains near the Pascal River, Eastern Sector, Dignania - (7:00PM Local Time)

     “For the first time in a week, The 34th Regiment Royal Infantry from Eastern Zartania can take a moment’s breath.  The fighting has moved south and the MLFLD Brigade commander has allow the men of the 34th a night of rest. They sit quietly in among the shrubs and rocks scanning the horizon.  They speak in hushed tones.  Their voices are barely above a whisper. Kind like a breeze, gently brushing your cheek allowing you to sample a word or two, but never revealing the entire conversation.

    To the west, the sun glows with oranges and reds as it breaks below the mountains.  The diminishing light casts’ shadows against the rocks, making a nice back drop for the show just south of this position.  Several glowing fires highlight the landscape.  Tracers and flares dance above the evening sky. The rattle and roar of automatic rifles provide the music accompaniment to the show, but the men of the 34th have already seen this show many times over.  They may have only been in country for a week, but to them it feels like two months. A week ago, the 34th under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Kevin Fernalld arrived at the port city of Kasama.  They immediately disembarked and were assigned to the 41st Division of the MLFLD army.  As an official war correspondent for Chen TV, I joined the Regiment just outside the city as they were preparing to move out.  Upon my first glimpse of the Eastern Zartanian soldiers, I must say, I was impressed.  They acted and looked professional. They calmly went about their duties even as their surroundings blurred about with confusion.  With the professionalism and composure of trained soldiers, the 34th dealt with the alien scene around them. Here they were in a foreign country and involved in a war most knew nothing about, but that didn’t matter because they knew a job had to be done.

    Within six hours of their arrival, the thousand soldiers in the Regiment were loaded into a motley assortment of taxis’ and cars. Believe or not there was even an ice cream truck in among the vehicles.  The column of cars drove southeast toward the Dignanian City of Mansa.  The trip to Mansa was filled with sudden stops and bumpy roads.  During the drive, several UBD aircraft made strafing runs on the column.  Vehicles were hit and the 34th took their first casualties, but the Regiment continued on.

    By daylight on March 17, the 34th arrived in Mansa, but were immediately forwarded to the front.  The vehicles drove the Regiment east until we were only a few miles from the front. The soldiers from Eastern Zartania then took to the pavement as they marched east toward the growing sounds of fighting. The 34th shared the road with MLFLD soldiers marching toward the front.  The closer they got, the louder the sounds of war became, as did the carnage.  We passed several burnt out trucks and tanks.  Bodies littered the landscape with buzzards as their only mourners.  The men of the 34th didn’t let their eyes linger on the fractured bodies or the faces frozen in terror, for they knew they would see plenty of that in the days to come.
 

    Early morning on March 18 found the 34th in combat for the first time. They took up position on the left flank of the MLFLD drive east.  At first, the regiment was placed in reserve a mile from the front line. For the first couple of days, the regiment marched for a mile or two and then dug in, but that changed on March 21. The Regiment was deployed along a road embankment. A farmhouse set apart from the road served as the regimental headquarters.  The men had dug foxholes along the embankment.  The road ran west to east and provided an excellent defensive position in otherwise flat terrain.  The KTZ foxholes and defensive positions stretched for three miles along the road with a foxhole every twenty feet.  Colonel Fernalld built a second line of foxholes a hundred feet behind first line to add depth to the position.  The 34th was anchored at both ends by two MLFLD regiments, the 56th on the left and the 67th on the right.  Our position was a few miles from the frontline on the left flank of the MLFLD drive to the sea.  The Regiment faced north.  At the time, I was in a foxhole with Private Alfred Tayler and Private James Osmund.  I remember that the sky was a bright blue with little puffs of white drifting carelessly by.  Tayler was talking about home and his family.  He wasn’t really concerned on whether or not Osmund and I were paying attention.  I suspect he just wanted to talk as a release valve for the tension.  Osmund on the other hand was quiet.  I hadn’t got much out of him since I meet him two days ago.  He had intense eyes and was always sure to dust himself off every time he stood up.  When the call came in, I was curiously focussing on the clouds passing by.  I didn’t even know something was up until Sergeant Krystin Yurlivzk jumped into the foxhole with us.  She was a large woman with a commanding sense of purpose.  She quickly informed us that UBD forces had broken through the left flank just north of here.  The word was that they were heading straight for this position.  She continued by saying that Lieutenant Regina Rikman was informed that we had to hold the line or the UBD would break up the MLFLD offensive.  I asked Sergeant Yurlivzk about the size of force coming at us.  She replied that tanks were involved, but other then that, we would just have to wait and see.  She then smiled and told me to keep my head down.  After giving Osmund and Tayler instructions about staying in the foxhole no matter what, she jumped out.  Once she left, everything became deathly quiet.  We all slowly peeked over the lip of the foxhole.  There was no sign of the UBD, only distance plums of smoke could be seen.  I remember feeling my heart pressing against my skin, trying to escape.  I had to fight against the urge to just get up and run. Osmund and Tayler checked their rifles and counted their grenades.  I readied my camera.

    For almost a half-hour nothing happened. Only the wind swirling up dust and the occasional bird flying by broke the stillness. Then came the horrible creaking sound.  It sounded like a dentist drill grinding against teeth.  The sound grew louder with each passing moment.  I peeked out from the foxhole, only to see plumes of dust heading our way.  I ducked back down just as the sudden sound of a machine gun echoed across the plain.  A shell landed some where off to the left.  The ground shook violently.  The evil creaking sound came still closer, closer and then flash, the world exploded.   Every gun the 34th owned fired.  The sound was so intense that it prevented any focused thought. I remember by ears pounding from the noise.  Osmund and Tayler stood near the lip of the foxhole firing their rifles.  Shell castings bounced about the foxhole as they were ejected from the rifles.  They changed clips.  The ground shook as shells landed all around the foxhole.  Dirt flew into the hole.  They changed clips. I peered out from the hole and saw the carnage before me.  As I looked north, my entire field of vision was filled with UBD tanks and vehicles attacking.  I then saw UBD soldiers running towards us.  Trails of smoke flew across the sky before they impacted against a UBD vehicle. Explosions, like rain, peppered the ground all around us.  I remember hearing the whine of bullets flying past my ear.  I looked left at the next foxhole over. Sergeant Yurlivzk was firing a heavy machinegun.  Another soldier was feeding her bullets.  And then, she disappeared into a flash of yellow and red.  Amazingly, her arm fell into our foxhole.  I bent down in a daze looking at the arm. My ears rung as if a telephone was inside my head banging away.  The ground shook again, which awoke me from my daze. 
I quickly snapped several pictures of the surrounding battle. The Smoke became so thick I could only see a few feet in front of the foxhole. A shell landed near the foxhole throwing Osmund to the floor.  By this time I was crouched in the corner of the hole.  Osmund picked himself off the floor, but before he could return fire his head exploded into a rainbow of red.  Horribly, I was sprayed with blood and brain.  His body fell next to me, jerking with muscle spasms.  I didn’t move an inch. I looked up to see Tayler looking down at Osmund’s body.  His eyes were wide with panic.  He started clutching at his uniform as if he was attempting to rip it off his body.  Boom! Everything then went upside down.  I vaguely remember part of the foxhole collapsing, but I clearly remember Tayler.  The last shell was enough for him.  It was the first time I ever saw someone go mad before my eyes. One minute he was mentally there, the next gone.  He screamed and jumped out of the foxhole never to be seen alive again.  This when I blacked out, only to be awakened the next morning on March 22 by Corporal Ralph Bluminhaegyn of the KTZ.

    I can not express my happiness at seeing a member of the 34th.  He helped me out of the foxhole and for a moment, in the early morning light, I thought I was on another planet of fire and smoke.  I quickly realized that in fact the sight before me was the position the 34th hold yesterday.  I recognized the road, but nothing else.  Everywhere I looked burning vehicles and bodies littered the ground.  The house the Colonel was using for regimental headquarters was a pile of wood.    Fires covered the surrounding landscape.  The hot searing smoke burned my nose.  Just to my left stood a burning UBD tank.  I walked around watching members of the 34th gather their wounded and locate their dead.  I learned later that the UBD forces were able to breech through 34th’s position at several points, but with the help of MLFLD reinforcements, the regiment was able to reestablish the line and push the UBD back to their original position.  Luckily, the attack was a last gasp attempt to breakthrough the MLFLD lines.  From all accounts, the 34th performed extremely well, but the price was heavy.  Colonel Fernalld told me that he was proud of his soldiers and promised that he was going to put in for metals for some of them.  I asked him if he had any people in mind.  He told me about three soldiers. Corporal Martin Lancaster climbed onto a UBD tank, placed an explosive charge on the tracks destroying them.  He then covered the view ports forcing the UBD inside to open the hatch at which point he killed them all.  Once the tank was out of commission, he used the machinegun mounted on top of the tank to engage infantry.  He killed several UBD soldiers before he himself was killed. Junior Lieutenant Anna Laubersstayed at her foxhole even after UBD forces surrounded her.  They found her this morning surrounded by twenty dead UBD soldiers and finally Private Dervin Wilkyns. He was seen running from foxhole to foxhole helping wounded KTZ soldiers.  Several times he risked his own life saving wounded soldiers.  He was even shot in the leg, but that didn’t stop him.  From our count, he personally saved thirty KTZ soldiers.  Luckily, he lived through the night and is with us today.  The Colonel went on to say that there were many heroes in his Regiment worth mentioning, but he also revealed that some forty soldiers ran in the face of the enemy.  These he indicated would be charged with cowardice and sent home for justice.  The rest of the day saw the 34th organize and move out again, but this time instead of east we headed south.  We entered the foothills of the Rokariyn Mountains sometime yesterday.   From March 23 to tonight, 34th cleaned up pockets of resistance and gathered prisoners.

    So this is how we find the 34th Royal Infantry in the Rokariyn Mountains a few miles north of Pascal River.  At the end of action today, the Colonel tallied the Casualty list as follows; 167 killed, 212 wounded, and 23 missing.  This is Malcolm Arnot, ChenTV, reporting from the Rokariyn Mountains in Dignania."
 
 

March 25, 229AP

Somewhere in the Witzleben mountain range(2:30PM Local Time)

(A radio transmission from Sergei Gostov.  The transmission is weak and at some points garbled)

    “This is Sergei Gostov reporting deep behind UBD territory in the Witzleben Mountains.  Since my last report almost two weeks ago, the band of rebels led by Michael Garibaldi has evaded UBD patrols and ambushed convoys heading north towards the frontlines.  The group is now up to thirty-five members, but that is balanced against the death of five members.  We live hand to mouth here in the mountains. I personally can’t remember the last time I was clean. My hands are black with dirt and my hair is caked with plant matter.  At the moment now, everyone is resting and checking their weapons after the yesterday’s ambush.

    Garibaldi led the group down to one of the roads leading through the mountains.  We waited until a UBD military convoy came by. Garibaldi ordered the group to open fire and within five minutes the convoy was destroyed.  The convoy consisted of four trucks and an armor car for protection.  The attack started with an RPG rocket striking the armor car just behind the front wheel.  The front left tire blow off causing the car to flip several times.  The trucks in the convoy tried to avoid the burning car, but they didn’t get far.  Garibaldi’s men fired machineguns into the cabs killing the drivers.  They also shot out the tires.  All four of the trucks skidded to a halt and any surviving UBD soldiers were killed.  Next came the looting. The rebels came running out of the surrounding forest and pounced on the Convoy.  Weapons, ammo, explosives, and food were given top priority for things to take.  Any UBD wounded were immediately shot.  Within five minutes, any valuable equipment was claimed and everything else was put to the torch. We then disappeared into the woods.

    The ambushes have become part of the routine here in the Mountains.  The group hits a convoy or patrol and then spends the rest of its time running and avoiding UBD security forces.  Garibaldi has led seven ambushes in the last two weeks.  He says that if we are not attacking then we are planing for the next attack. His motto is “Attack! Attack! Never let up! Never surrender! Never retreat and always pick death before dishonor!”

    I have noticed within the last week that the UBD has stepped up their patrols.  Every other day, the group stumbles onto bodies of UBD soldiers, rebels or civilians.  There are no rules in this partisan war.  I have seen horrors that no one can imagine.  Bodies hung upside down on trees with their guts ripped out.  Heads stuck on branches. In Dignanian myth, the Witzleben Mountains are known as a haven of witches and monsters.  Well now because of the war, those myths have come true and they are worse then anyone could ever have imagined.  I must sign off now because the group is preparing to head out.  Until my next report, Sergei Gostov RNS.”

(Transmission ends)
 
 

March 26, 299AP
 

 RNS News Report from the Eastern Zartanian city of Perikarsia- (11:51AM Local Time)

[broadcasting live (with a 45-second delay) from Perikarsia, administrative capital of the stek of Northern Peninsula]
 

WHITLER: Good morning. I'm Marsha Whitler, reporting for RNS. I'm currently standing across the street here in Perikarsia from the Council Building. That four-story building houses the meeting chambers for the Northern Peninsula Stek Council, and the offices for its 57 members. This morning the council is not yet in session, as
Governor-General Victoria Routh has summoned several high-ranking members of the council to her estate, behind me, to discuss various matters within the stek. Here on the east side of Royalty Boulevard is the Governor-General's estate. A large fenced yard leads up to the brick house where the Governor-General, her husband, and three children live. As you can also see, there are a large number of people gathered on the sidewalk in front of the estate as well. Carrying signs and flags, these fifty or sixty people are here protesting the Eastern Zartanian involvement in the Dignanian Civil War half a world away. I'm joined now by Marvin Dermidtz, the local organizer of this demonstration. Marvin, good to see you this morning.

DERMIDTZ: Good to be here with you Marsha.

WHITLER: I guess the first question, Marvin, is what exactly are you protesting here? Some people around the Kingdom could see this is helping the MCZ.

DERMIDTZ: That's not why we're out here. We're here to protest what we feel is the unlawful involvement of our government in the internal affairs of another sovereign state. Once again, they're sticking their noses in other people's business, and they're not paying enough attention to what's going on here at home.

WHITLER: So you feel that the Kingdom has no right to be involved in Dignania at all? Even considering the historical closeness of the two countries and the fact that the so-called "rump" of the legitimate government has appealed to Eastern Zartania for help?

DERMIDTZ: That's right, Marsha. There's nothing over there worth fighting for! The government says that our national interests are at stake. What national interests? The only reason we're over there is so that our king can get a bigger name for himself in world politics. And the most sickening thing is that our people are dying over there for no reason, when there's so much here in Eastern Zartania that needs attention.

WHITLER: For example...?

DERMIDTZ: For example, promoting industry within our country. The government should be spending more time and money trying to recreate the economic base that was destroyed by Terramarc than getting involved in
other people's wars. Education is another big issue. The Kingdom's current education system is a joke! Nothing more, nothing less. Our kids are coming out of this system not having any idea what's going on in the real world, or how to compete and make a living. We need more schools, more teachers, and a more competitive curriculum. And let's not forget the [CENSORED] in January. A lot of good people died, and the government still won't give us an answer.

WHITLER: A lot of good points, Marvin. But what about what Foreign Minister Young calls "the continuing barbaric, tyrannical, and terrorist atrocities" that the MCZ is committing? Shouldn't the Kingdom do something to fight that?

DERMIDTZ: You're right, Marsha, we should try to stop the MCZ from killing innocent people as they have been. But really, the MCZ isn't that much of a threat to our country or our government anymore. After the bulk of them were exiled several decades ago, we haven't heard much of them until last week's terrorist attacks. Personally, I think the MCZ is dying organization, on its last leg, and that these attacks are just its dying gasps. And we definitely shouldn't be getting involved in a foreign civil war just to put the final nail in a dead organization's coffin.

WHITLER: Interesting. But what about the MCZ's history of conducting attacks upon Eastern Zartania even from other countries while in exile? Doesn't that lend credence to what Foreign Minister Young is saying?

DERMIDTZ: I suppose it does, Marsha, but I still feel that they're not that big of a threat. Why is the government focusing on them instead of the Zartanian Republic Movement, which has actually succeeded in killing two members of the royal family before? The MCZ doesn't present nearly the threat it used to, and they're not goi.....

(The ground shudders, shaking the camera, and the sound of an explosion rips through the air. Screams are heard in the background.)

WHITLER: Omigod! Omigod! Al... Al, look at the building!!

(The camera hastily and jerkily turns toward the Stek Council Building across the street. It appears as though the entire support for the right front corner of the building has given way. The building appears lopsided, as the right front corner droops off toward the ground. Fire can be seen on the first three floors of the building. Debris is
scattered for blocks in every direction. Screams fill the air in terror. The sirens of police, rescue, and military vehicles can be heard rapidly approaching the seen. A second explosion goes off in the rubble of the front corner of the building, making the once-proud building shudder and lean more toward the ground. Debris is thrown through the air, and windows are shattered, including the camera lens.)

WHITLER: Omigod! Omigod! I can't believe it! What just happened? What's going on?! Al? Al?! (scream) Help! I need help over here!! Al, can you hear--

              [transmission interrupted]
 
 

March 27-29, 299AP
 

KTZ-RAFR, ROYAL ARMED FORCES RADIO
 

The Current War situation in Dignania:
 

The Rokariyn Mountains - The war has settled down into trench warfare. Neither side has launched a major offensive in the last few days. The war in Dignanian has turned into a war for the possession of the Rokariyn Mountains.  The UBD offensive failed when they were cut off just south of the city of Demieville and pushed back into the mountains. The lull in the fighting could be attributed to both sides being tired from the almost two weeks of heavy fighting.  Analysts here at RNS believe that each side will rest and build up reinforcements for the next round.  In the meantime, the UBD and MLFLD will dig in and build fortifications in the Rokariyn Mountains.  The MLFLD has reclaimed most of the Ambrosio lost last week during the UBD breakthrough, except for a tall steep hill running on the north side of the Pascal River.  The hill is difficult to attack and provides an excellent position from which the UBD can attack and keep the Ambrosio line under consistent pressure.  The MLFLD leadership has dubbed the hill “The Citadel.” Several MLFLD attacks have tried to dislodge the UBD, but to no avail.  KTZ launched air strikes against the hill, but due to the danger of SAM’s the aircraft dropped their bombs at higher altitudes, which made hitting the targets difficult.  The hill creates a bulge in the line and will probably be the focus of future operations by both sides. Besides the hill, the rest of the frontline generally follows the Ambrosio line along the Pascal and Solitude Rivers.

Demiéville  - Last week during the counteroffensive Operation Turn-About, the MLFLD trapped about ten to twenty thousand UBD soldiers within the city.  Since then, MLFLD fifth Corps under the command of Upper General Charles Wayne has been trying to flush them out.  When MLFLD forces first entered Demieville they meet with success as several thousand UBD immediately surrendered, but that quickly turned to stubborn resistance.  For the last few days, MLFLD soldiers have been fighting house to house combat as they try to push the UBD defenders back against the ocean.  Several KTZ air strikes have been directed at pockets of resistance and at any UBD rogue armored vehicles, which happen to appear.  General Wayne guarantees that by April 1 the city will be under the complete control of the MLFLD.

Air Campaign - The air war centers around KTZ forces on the Carrier Warbird and land based aircraft.  KTZ officials tell RNS that most of the sorties are in support of MLFLD soldiers trying to reestablish a defensive position along the Ambrosio Line.  A few attacks were also directed at Demieville.  KTZ fighters along with a few MLFLD fighters are providing CAP (Combat Air Patrol) for the Northern Plain.  The goal is to prevent any UBD air attack north of the Rokariyn Mountains. This will allow MLFLD troops and supplies to move freely without fear for above.  The officials also state that for the moment, the KTZ will not be launching any attacks south of the Rokariyn Mountains due the lack of aircraft in the theater.  An air offensive aimed at southern Dignania will commence as soon as enough reinforcements arrive and facilities can be set up to provide logistics.  MLFLD military officials state that the first airbase will be ready for KTZ use on March 30.  The base is thirty miles south of Kasama and will provide an excellent staging area for attacks south.

Sea Blockade around Dignania - The blockade continues around Dignania.  KTZ naval ships and submarines patrol the 400-mile war zone.  Reports indicate that several ships approaching Dignania have been turned away.   KTZ naval officials tell RNS that at least two ships were boarded and one has been impounded after it was discovered to be carrying war material to the UBD.  KTZ has not released the name or origin of the ship. Two ships were seen leaving York Beach over the weekend.  They were reportedly flying a Djeriga flag, but KTZ submarine forces sent both the ships to the bottom.  KTZ naval officials state that the ships were not Djerigan, but UBD.  They just changed flags to try to slip by without being sunk.  The ships have been tentatively identified as the freighter Squall and Oilier Ambapali.

Diplomatic dealings in Dignania – Deputy Harrison Ford has officially announced a dinner for foreign dignitaries to be held on Lancaster Island on March 31.  The Federal Republic of Neoliliana, which recognized the MLFLD, has announced that their ambassador Mme. Ela Dorysi will attend. KTZ Ambassador to Dignania Brigadier Baron Josef Hennessy will also attend the dinner.  Deputy Ford will ask if the UPRMI ambassador Consul-General Sh'aniahia Vaoniahi and Free Caboteniasa Movement ambassador Jorge Martiano would also like to attend the dinner.  The central issues to be discussed at the dinner will probably be about the Dignanian war, FCM war, and post war plans.
 

Current Situation in the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania from a report broadcasted on March 29
(12:46 PM Local Tine)
 

KTZ-RAFR, ROYAL ARMED FORCES RADIO

BELVOIR: Welcome back, I'm Frank Belvoir, and this is another news update here on RAFR: *the* radio station for Eastern Zartania's servicemen and women. Leading our stories this afternoon is the continuing clean-up effort following Friday mornings second round of terrorist bombings in Eastern Zartania. Rescue efforts continue to be hampered in Perikarsia and Thornbush due to a cell of violent thunderstorms that has remained over the area for much of the weekend.  In Perikarsia, the MCZ bomb destroyed most of the Stek Council Building. The wreckage still has not been cleaned up, due to the storm system that moved in early Saturday morning. Current figures show over 75 dead in Perikarsia, mostly inside the Council Building, more than 120 injured, primarily by flying glass and debris, and another 34 still missing and at this point presumed dead. In Thornbush, where the bomb was detonated as almost the same time in an attack nearly identical to the one in Perikarsia, the Board of Supervisors Annex was almost completely destroyed. In that attack, where the clean-up efforts have suffered the same setbacks as those in Perikarsia, more than 100 are confirmed killed, 150 are injured, and another 58 are still missing. More details, of course, will be broadcast once they are released. In East harbor, one of the primary ports and naval facilities in Eastern Zartania, the bomb was less deadly and more pointed. A small "satchel-bomb" was detonated outside the House of Merriment, a restaurant and bar located just four blocks from the consulate maintained by the Free Confederacy and known to be frequented by two members of the consulate staff. Since the dissolution of the FCLR earlier this month, the consulate has continued to be maintained by the existing diplomatic staff, but has now begun to represent the Lendian Confederacy, the successor government to the FCLR. Immediately after the bomb blast in Eastharbor, the MCZ telephoned the local Royal Police station to claim responsibility, saying "the people of the former FCLR must learn the lesson that we are teaching Eastern Zartania as well. The Uhlanians see the way! They understand. We have always supported them, and now use this attack as a call to all patriots of the Free Confederacy to rise up! Your time is now." Because of the direct threat to the lives of the diplomatic staff at the consulate, a company of Royal Army infantry has been stationed around the compound on 24-hour guard to ensure the safety of the staff. Luckily, no one was killed in the blast, though 21 people were injured, four seriously.

    In the Royal Crown Colony of Haddock Cove Friday afternoon, another blast went off. This one, luckily, appears only to have been a warning, as the bomb detonated on a beach just outside the newly laid airport, which has subsequently been converted for use as a staging base for air operations in Dignania. No one was killed or injured in the blast, as that beach has been off limits to local citizens since the construction began on the airport. Officials are investigating the bomb wreckage in Haddock Cove for further clues. In the Eastern Zartanian protectorate of Albion in former northern Merite, a bomb was detonated just outside the town of Tabrik. Tabrik, located in central Albion, is currently being used as the temporary capital for the Albionish Provisional Government. The blast happened in the heart of the town, just yards away from a Royal Army outpost, and only three blocks from the APG Government House. Six soldiers of the 13th Regiment Royal Infantry were killed outright, and another nine injured. Seven Albionish civilians were also killed in the attack, while 14 were injured. Several buildings in the area were damaged, and the security fence around the army outpost was demolished in that sector. Immediately following the attack and the martial law decree from Imperial City, Brigadier Alana Jouett, commander of the Eastern Zartanian security forces in Albion, arrived at the APG Government House and asked the Provisional Government to issue a statement supporting the martial law, to call up all Albionish militia, and to place them under her command for the duration. So far, no response has been received from the Provisional Government. Brigadier Jouett has been quoted as saying that she is willing to cooperate as much as possible with the protectorate's government, but that if she doesn't receive a reply by tomorrow afternoon, she'll have no choice but to implement the martial law decree herself and take control of the protectorate.

    Two more bombings were reported in Imperial City Friday, as well, leading to accusations that MCZ agents have infiltrated the Royal Police, the Royal Army, or both. The two bombs were detonated minutes apart in opposite sectors of the city. The first bomb went off inside the Royal News Service Broadcast Center, collapsing the central part of the building. Clean-up is still underway, and the bodies of the 26 missing people are still being sought after, but the consensus now is that they are probably dead. So far, 103 are confirmed dead, and another 116 have been injured in the attack on the RNS Broadcast Center. Unfortunately, due to the destruction of the Broadcast Center, RNS will be off the air until temporary facilities can be established elsewhere. The second bomb in Imperial City was detonated as the construction site of the new soccer stadium being built to house the KTZ National Soccer Team. The explosion blew out two of the supporting columns and scaffolding, part of the east wing of the stadium to collapse on top of the workers below. Six workers were killed, and another fifteen injured in the blast. Karl Muskal, TFZ Commissioner, has stated that the explosion has set back the construction schedule approximately two months, but that construction will resume as soon as the investigation has been completed.

    Perhaps the strangest bombing on Friday occurred in the middle of Norbay, the Bay of the Northern Approaches. At approximately 12:45 Friday afternoon, an explosion was reported aboard the cargo freighter ZS Palm Tree. The ship was carrying tea on a return trip from Westria when the blast occurred, ripping a 45-ft wide hole in the bottom of the ship. The ship immediately began to founder, and sank within ten minutes. All of the crew were able to escape, and then found themselves floating in a sea of hot tea. Apparently the heat of the blast had actually boiled some of the tea bags, so that for the past two days residents along southern Desdarca and Guldavya have been reporting the smell of Westrian tea constantly in the air. The Ministry of the Interior has also issued a warning instructing all residents along Norbay not to drink the tea, no matter how tempting it may smell. Norbay is a salt-water body, and consumption of such water could harm or even kill you. Friday afternoon at 3:00, His Royal Majesty issued a decree establishing a state of martial law throughout all of the Kingdom and its dependencies. So far, we have reports that the decree has been successfully implemented in all 12 of the Kingdom's steks, as well as in the colonies of Haddock Cove and Noteraland. No word has yet been received from Glaciaria, or from the Albionish Provisional Government. When informed about the martial law decree, TFZ Commissioner Muskal's only comment was, "Well, I guess this is going to delay the season, huh?"

    KTZ military officials state that they believe that the MCZ and the UBD are acting in concert.  They feel that there are two offensives being run.  The UBD attack in Dignania and the MCZ attack on Eastern Zartania.  The purpose of the attack on Zartania is to delay or stop the KTZ from sending forces over to Dignania.  The MCZ and UBD figure that if they can delay the KTZ commitment then they can defeat the MLFLD before the KTZ forces can arrive and make a difference on the ground.  So far, the undeclared UBD and MCZ plan is working because the current attacks will keep KTZ forces in Zartania for several months.  This leaves the MLFLD in a dangerous position as they try to survive until the KTZ can arrive. Our military analysts believe that the UBD will launch another offensive within two weeks We'll have continuing coverage of the martial law situation and the hunt for the MCZ throughout the day here on RAFR. Thanks for listening.

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Page last updated on March 30, 299.
©1999 Matt Cook & Randy Young