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Veritas Alicubi Est (GNS)
Galactic News Service - "Veritas Alicubi Es"
Posted by: Seele on Year 17 Day 097
KATHOL (INB) - Denizens of the galaxy were surprised today at the shock announcement from the Rift Alliance (RA) that they had secured the fabled Katana Fleet. Source of much discussion was the news that the RA had succeeded in secretly launching 100 Dreadnaught-class cruisers after retrofitting to remove the fatal flaw that sent the doomed fleet into legend. Celebrations at the achievement were reported across the Rift Alliance, however, newly leaked reports have indicated the announcement by the Rift Alliance is nothing more than a hoax.
It is an ill-kept secret that the Rift Alliance has been struggling to attract recruits to its failing military for some time now. According to top secret scandocs believed to have been leaked from the Krath Dynasty’s Ruling Council, a desperate need has come to light for the Rift Alliance to garner galactic attention in a bid to attract recruits. With overall numbers of personnel throughout the entirety of the Rift Alliance either being stagnant or slowly dropping over the past few years, a scheme was hatched amongst the RA’s leadership known as 'Operation Haunting'. This operation was conceived as a propaganda campaign to draw notoriety and mystique to the Rift Alliance in a bid to boost its overall manpower in the hope that citizens would flock to serve aboard the famous ships of the missing Katana Fleet.
The revelation of Operation Haunting through the leak has not surprised military and industrial analysts. A number of consultants from the Advanced Shipwright’s Association (ASA) point out that retrofitting the specially built Dreadnaughts of the Katana Fleet would be cost prohibitive. Doctor Pavel Androkem, a Fellow of the ASA, pointed out that the Katana Fleet ships were built to be highly automated from the spaceframe level. Retrofitting even a single Dreadnaught of this type to modern technologies and the need for crews would require fundamental changes to the spaceframe, which in turn would require almost the total deconstruction and rebuild of the capital ship. Conservative estimates of deconstruction, rebuild and refitting costs would be prohibitive.
“I think it is far more likely that they simply built new Dreadnaughts rather than found the legendary Katana Fleet. Not to mention the logistics of moving over 200 non-functioning capital ships into shipyards thousands of lightyears away.” Explained Dr Androkem. “It would make absolutely no sense to retrofit the ships, as it would cost more than simply building new ones.”
Refuting detractors of the Rift Alliance’s claims, Professor Mulder Solakoust of the Krath Defence Academy’s School of Galactic Studies outlines a very different picture. Citing his vast research undertaken on the disappearance of the Katana Fleet, Professor Solakoust paints a picture of intrigue, conspiracy, and government cover-ups. “What you have to understand is that the [Katana Fleet] vessels were a unique design using experimental technology that was described on runes hidden deep within the Sith Temples of Korriban. No-one knew what was going to happen when the ships were finally switched on, as people were dealing with technology they couldn’t comprehend. When they did turn it on though, woah, man. Zip! Flash! The entire fleet disappears and the Old Republic covers it up.”
Frantically pointing at starmaps etched into his office walls with a laser scapel, Professor Solakoust explained that he had been trying to get the Krath Ruling Council to take notice of his research to locate the Katana Fleet for a number of years. “They must’ve sent special Tetan Guard units to break into my home while I wasn’t in. A find like this would be amazing. I’ve funded my own expeditions to find the fleet myself, but they must’ve used my research to see something I knew all along: the truth is out there.”
When asked how the Rift Alliance would be able to find the Katana Fleet as claimed in the Unknown Regions, Dr Solakoust had a simple answer: “Togl.”
Adding to the weight of evidence that this is a hoax, military analysts from the Charon Institute of Political Studies on Coruscant pointed out that the Rift Alliance’s ability to crew their military fleets prior to the production of a hundred additional Dreadnaughts was already stretched thin. “Much of their military assets like capital ships were already floating idle with their manpower shortages. To suddenly introduce a mass of Dreadnaughts across the Rift Alliance would be a serious issue for them to staff with qualified officers and capable crews. I estimate they would be lucky to man even a quarter of those 100 ships, let alone another 100 they claim to be on the way.”
Reviewing the weight of evidence, many political commentators are ready to accept that Operation Haunting has been undertaken by a fledgling alliance in desperate need to obtain publicity for recruiting efforts. Summarising the Rift Alliance’s achievement, Dr Androkem had this to say; “I doubt these ships are from the Katana Fleet at all, but I do know that with their manpower shortages, [the Rift Alliance] has certainly created a ghost fleet of legend; just not the one they’re pretending it is.”