While White Noise (WN) and company gain ground in Geminate and Vale of the Silent, a quick look look at DOTLAN shows that Against All Authorities (-A-) is busily knocking at WN's back door in Teneferis.
Recall that White Noise picked up most of their Teneferis holdings while participating in the rollback of -A- last September alongside The Initiative, Pandemic Legion and Circle of Two. Later, when -A- and the rest of the Southern Russian Coalition struck back at The Initiative and friends, White Noise took advantage of the situation. With The Initiative on the ropes and IT Alliance hard pressed in Fountain, White Noise opened a second front against Initiative systems in Teneferis. Scooping up Teneferis and Catch systems The Initiative was too weak to defend, White Noise expanded their rental empire significantly with little danger to themselves.
In the three months since IT Alliance fell from power, -A- has been consolidating its hold on Catch and rebuilding strength lost during their forced exile. Now, with the supercapital fleets of both Pandemic Legion and White Noise occupied in an offensive against the Northern Coalition (NC), -A- appears to feel strong enough to take back their old Teneferis holdings, offering White Noise some payback for its role in the invasion of -A- space last September.
As of today, -A- and friends have rolled White Noise from all but the Northeastern corner of Teneferis. By now White Noise renters and non-PvP resources have been relocated to systems well behind the current frontier (note the depth of buffer systems between 77S8-E, the Detroid/Teneferis entry system and the nearest renter system). Detroid, which WN shares with new DRF allies Raiden[DOT], is WN's obvious staging area and launching point for counterattacks, should they occur.
If -A- holds pat in Teneferis and doesn't attempt to take the fight into Detroid, it's unlikely that White Noise will contest possession of Teneferis as long as things are on high boil in the North. It isn't unusual for the DRF to relocate renters and rely on the depth of their territory to wear down attackers, and then respond in force once the enemy gets bored of grinding away at structures.
If it believes a conflict with White Noise is inevitable, -A- might be looking for a smack-down with WN now rather than later. If -A- adopts a wait and see posture, they will likely face the same coalition of forces presently attacking the NC when WN comes knocking in turn. However, a push by -A- into Detroid now could force WN to detach from the Northern offensive in order to protect their Detroid assets, while the rest of the DRF remained in the North to carry on the offensive. That might allow -A- to bloody White Noise before the remainder of the DRF can get into the fight.
It would be a ballsy move, but it's not one I'd count on. With the DRF having made allies of IT Alliance spin-offs and with Pandemic Legion on their payroll they can field, at last check, 140 supercaps in a single engagement. Remember when 80 supercaps was an unthinkably large supercap fleet? My guess is that -A-, like much of nullsec, might try to follow a policy of security through obscurity; attempting to stay below the DRF radar once the conquest of Teneferis is complete. Time tends to work against large coalitions, and a change in the weather is always possible.
Alas, the DRF alliances have shown themselves resistant to such changes. So, one is left with a few choices. One might hunker down and hold one's patch of nullsec while hoping to escape notice. One might hope that White Noise will be satisfied with what they've taken so far, their vast appetite for ever more rental properties sated at last; sort of a give-Hitler-Czechoslovakia-and-he'll-leave-us-alone strategy. Or, one might fight the rising tide.
We'll see if someone not already under threat from the DRF steps forward to ring the alarm and organize the common defense of nullsec. If not, the DRF will likely isolate and pick off potential threats one by one, leaving a few non-affiliated nullsec regions for public relations purposes. Alliances not under the DRF umbrella will either stand together or hang separately, as they say.
So sit back and pass around the whiskey and cigars. It's going to be an interesting Summer.
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