The State Strikes Back

It has been a long march for those enlisted with the State Protectorate. Since early 2014 they have suffered dwindling morale and Tier 1, leaving a determined but weary skeleton crew. Hard times made them who they are however, and now at long last, they strike back. It is the rise of a new, lean and mean Caldari Militia, full of purpose and focused determination. As the Gallente war machine lost steam after the capture of the war zone, the Caldari made sure to rebuild. Slowly, surely, quietly. The north-east wing of the war zone, past the gateway system of Okkamon, was taken back without fanfare. Meanwhile, in the north-west wing the systems of Hykanima and Sarenemi provided stubborn foothold. Other than this, the war zone remained quiet. Gallente could routinely scour the several regions without seeing a Caldari fleet, and often turned to neutral and pirate groups to get a fight. Some even left the militia, seeing as there was little fight to be had out of the squids. After months of maintaining this status quo, State Protectorate forces decided to push. From the outside it was obvious that lessons had been learned and that this wasn’t the fragmented and infighting militia that lost Inna and the war zone. With little warning, a seemingly coordinated campaign pushed both northern fronts at the same time. Systems were plexed to vulnerable and IHub bashing fleets operated efficiently, taking a somewhat relaxed (some would say made lazy by design) Gallente Militia by surprise. At the same time, Spaceship Samurai of the Hero coalition, who had announced their entry into FW two weeks prior, could be seen in the plexes, IHubs and on the front lines. Their numbers and willingness to cooperate have given CalMil the potency they need to truly go on an offensive. This looks like the rebirth of the Caldari Militia players have been awaiting for a very long time. I approached Caldari FC and BLOC Executive Officer Myra Stark, an outspoken proponent of unified militia ops and comms, to learn how it all came about.
Myra, give us a short summary of your role and career within the Caldari Militia. – I’ve been in CalMil for a bit more than a year. I joined FW as a 2 month old toon. I was a solo pilot initially then started joining CalMil fleets as a scout. That progressed to deputy FC duties for various Senior CalMil FCs. They taught me a lot and eventually I started taking out roaming/plexing fleets and leading system assaults/defenses when asked. The Mjolnir Bloc and your alliance, The Bloc, have long been a staple of the militia. You have previously been described as “in it for the fights”, was that accurate? If so, has it changed to now also include taking an active role in overall militia strategy? – That’s an accurate description of the BLOC and still is. When the Gallente Militia took the WZ a significant number of CalMil FW Corps and veteran pilots left CalMil and many of the remaining Alliances/Corps moved elsewhere in the WZ. Fortunately for BLOC, we didn’t lose any pilots or Corps. As a result, by default, we found ourselves alone in NW Black Rise and taking on a larger role in CalMil with the help of our closest allies GHIOT and CalMil Coalition Partners. After months of laying low, the Caldari militia is active in the north of the war zone. Having long secured everything north of Okkamon and holding a beachhead in Saranemi and Hykanima, it is now on the offensive. Can you describe how this offensive was set into motion? How much does Spaceship Samurai’s entry into FW have to do with it, and do you feel that they are working with you, or just doing their own thing? – The offensive started Thanksgiving weekend (28-30NOV). The BLOC decided to start pushing systems in west Black Rise to test our new pilots and abilities. We watched vulnerability levels and slowly increased pressure on systems until they could be quickly plexed vulnerable and flipped. Seeing the opportunity, other CalMil Alliances added their weight to the effort… props to GHIOT, Templis, HECON, Dei-Telum and I-RED. For the BLOC, it has worked out well and we are pleased with the result. It’s part of a larger effort by all of CalMil to achieve some key objectives for the Militia. Spaceship Samurai’s arrival in the WZ was very fortuitous and unrelated to the timing of the offensive. Spaceship Samurai have been great team players from the start. Good pilots, great to fly with and always willing to fight. They quickly took Kinakka and established a base. Since then they’ve spread out all over the WZ and helped with bash fleets, plexing fleets and roaming fleets. Spaceship Samurai’s arrival in FW has been good for CalMil in BLOC’s opinion. Lowlife---From-Grunt-to-FC_layout2 Do you feel that the Militia has learned from past mistakes? Is there an active push for unified operations and comms? Are we seeing a different CalMil this time around? – Losing the WZ really highlighted our weaknesses as a militia. Coordinated operations are becoming more common within the Coalition and with all of CalMil. Taking a page from the Gallente, many of us are operating from a common TS server. It makes forming up and sharing intel much easier. In the past, many CalMil fleets were kitchen sink even at the Cruiser/BC level. Now the majority of CalMil Assault Frig, Cruiser and BC fleets are using an approved fleet comp. CalMil tends to have more GenMil pilots in fleet and they are frequently being provided with doctrine ships to purchase. These were necessary changes if we’re going to compete with the Gallente. Some would say that the Gallente Militia has become complacent since taking the war zone, even losing some prominent members and FC’s. Do you feel that this is the case, and is it something you think CalMil is able to take advantage of with blitzkrieg tactics? – BLOC still sees a Gallente Militia full of fight. We’ve noticed the departure of some key FCs, Corporations and Alliances. I think that’s inevitable after taking the WZ. Players are ready to move on to the next challenge in Eve. I’m sure some will return when it suits them. The FCs, pilots and organizations that remain are great pilots and I enjoy going up against them every night. Operating in Black Rise and The Citadel means running into groups such as Snuffbox and Overload Everything and others. How have your engagements with “neutrals” turned out during the current offensive? Have you taken the fights or focused on taking systems as part of an overall strategy? – Neutrals or Pirates looking for “Good Fights” are always the bane of system efforts by both Militias. We are happy to fight them during our roams. But BLOC used several techniques to minimize their influence during the offensive in NW Black Rise. We kept plexing fleets small, pre-staged bash ships nearby, tried to take systems vulnerable during their less active TZs and a bit of diplomacy here and there. Our efforts were successful. We only had pirate opposition in Kinakka. The Pirates pushed BLOC and Spaceship Samurai off the IHub in EUTZ. Spaceship Bepop was able to D-plex the system. We came back in USTZ plexed it vulnerable and bashed the IHub in a combined op with Spaceship Samurai. Then Spaceship Samurai led a second combined op that night flipping Raihbaka before downtime. Do you feel that State Protectorate forces have been able to fully take advantage of all the new players coming into EVE recently? Have you actively adapted to accommodate and make use of them? – I can’t speak for the other CalMil Corps/Alliances but BLOC missed out on that one. We were prepared to take in some Newbros to help out our game but few came our way. So we’re back to our normal recruiting methods and 5M SP requirement. Speaking in broader terms, how do you see the war zone looking in a month? – I think interesting times are ahead for our perpetual war with the Gallente. Militia BLOC and its CalMil partners have plans for the future. I’m certain GalMil have plans as well. It will be interesting to see how things turn out. ~ Interesting times indeed. Winter is upon us and it looks like we’re all in for a good fight. However the chips fall in the end, it is impressive to see State Protectorate forces back on their feet, although long overdue. The Gallente better shape up soon, because the Caldari approach the gates of Nennamalia and Eha with frightening speed, swallowing the old forward staging system of Rakapas like it was nothing.
Tags: Caldari Militia, Factional Warfare, lowlife, niden

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12 year EVE veteran, Snuffed Out scumbag, writer, graphic artist, producer, Editor-in-Chief of Crossing Zebras and the second most influential player in EVE, according to EVE Onion.