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Blockade Blackout

Millions of angry citizens of all alliances raised their voices in protest today after a massive blockading operation undertaken by a group of alliance pilots resulted in a massive service blackout all across alliance space. Almost every flight control tower in sectors without a High Guard defensive laser reported seeing battlecruisers jumping in and blockading everything in sight. In total, approximately 2099 blockades were used.

"It was nuts," a flight control operator for Desolo said. "No one could get out. We've seen this sort of behavior before, but not on such a massive scale."

All courier companies and trading centers reported a substantial drop in profits due to the blackout.
"We'd get requests for supplies and had to notify the client that all courier ships were grounded for God only knows how long," said edmond fletcher, who works dispatch for Miriani Interplanetary Delivery. Similar reports were filed by nearly every courier company impacted.

to make matters worse, the Praelor chose that time to launch an atmospheric strike against the Commonwealth colony world Xytholes, followed by a standard invasion of sector 12. Defensive operations were delayed due to many civilian pilots being unable to launch from blockaded locations. While the invasion of Xytholes was eventually cleared, it wasn't before many structures were destroyed. At least ten colonists have been reported missing and are presumed dead. Casualty lists are still being updated.

A few able pilots attempted to clear the blockaded sectors while the invasion was being dealt with, but the pilots responsible for them did nothing to help clear their own blockades. They did, however, crew their vessels for the invasion. At least one vessel, the ten-person battlecruiser "Genocide" licensed to Commonwealth pilot Anton Yobi, was identified as being involved. After the invasion was over, Mr. Yobi's vessel was seen interfering with attempts to clear blockades in sector 5 after he threatened to destroy another vessel in sector 27 over the general communication channel.

A spokesman for High Guard Command condemned these actions as "immature, reckless, and not at all becoming of a licensed battlecruiser pilot." When asked to elaborate, he was quoted as saying, "Obviously we're going to see some piracy. Sometimes planets and stations get blockaded to keep people there. That's to be expected. However, I can think of no valid reason for an individual or group to blockade every location possible. It's not good for security, it's not good for business, and it doesn't make us look good either. We and the ISC approve these applications. We'll definitely have to review this case, but I can't guarantee anything."

Similar sentiments were expressed by a representative of ProxiCorp, the producers of proximity weapons. "Obviously, we want people to buy and use our products," she said. "However, we never intented for anyone to do what these pilots have done. I'm kind of afraid that this might lead to a call for proximity weapon control. That could definitely hurt our business."

Dated: 03/20/2363



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