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  • "Poland's ability to shuffle resources around is the sole reason why I will need to personally suggest that they vote first. Any action of reshuffling will become increasingly suspicious, and they can't afford the hatred of both sides who want the resolution to pass - one way or the other. Unless, of course, they're being backed by Russia. We also can't afford them going around any plans to exit a deadlock.

    The only real way I can see to get on Scotland's good side is to side against UK's sudden introduction into the EU, even temporarily. We could do it on an economic standpoint, but even then it would stand against our allies. Although if I could feign being against the UK rejoining to the point of them considering leaving, watch Poland counter-play that and then switch back... It would be risky, but possible. We could also just ask Scotland to pretend to be on our side, or make it look like we're making up when we're not in order to get Poland to fall for it. I mean, we could always ask them to become a trading partner with the Benelux Union, but I would need to work out the damage of that.

    Asking Germany to activate their tie-breaker abilities in favour of the French to set a precedent of true co-operation and to show the willingness of the EU to stand together is something I do want to request, regardless of whether they listen or not. I don't expect it to do anything, however.

    The german-leaning balkan states would probably be our best bet, then. I'm uncertain of what we can do to support them, as I haven't actually considered them... thanks for mentioning them. I'll need to think of some ways to get them to switch sides, which will be interesting, but I'm sure I can do it. I'll need to get in contact with them soon for negotiations.

    No matter what, we can't let this deadlock all the way to the end, as it would severely damage the EU. The best thing to do is to either retract the ultimatum and move onto more productive matters, or make someone leave the deadlock ASAP. I would very much prefer it being towards the French... but I would actually prefer a quick german win and the dealing with the subsequent precedent and german manipulation then 7 votes of bickering followed by the disassociation of the EU. But, again, we can't afford to switch... Can we say that to the EU without getting ridiculous amounts of backlash from both sides and the public? We can't.

    ... There's too much to think about. So much easier in a group forum.

    As for other issues... Singapore is 'testing' an AI. Contacting them under the guise of wanting to test the newly upgraded cybersecurity system could give us the specifics of the power of other AIs in other countries, and see whether it's based on the size of the country or the possible impact. Could also be ok to get friends in the south pacific, if of course they stay out of the developing war."
    Originally posted by Cave Johnson
    "All right, I've been thinking. When life gives you lemons, don't make lemonade. Make life take the lemons back! Get mad! I don't want your damn lemons, what am I supposed to do with these? Demand to see life's manager! Make life rue the day it thought it could give Cave Johnson lemons! Do you know who I am? I'm the man who's gonna burn your house down! With the lemons! I'm gonna get my engineers to invent a combustible lemon that burns your house down!"

    Comment


    • "I was afraid you'd agree with me," I sigh before continuing, "Unfortunately, I don't believe we can actually criticize the Polish bloc without making (seemingly) baseless accusations or releasing classified intel. And regardless of those facts, I hardly believe we have enough clout within the EU to criticize the perfectly legal actions of a typically lukewarm group and maintain credibility with our French-leaning allies. As what is essentially a glorified observer state, I also don't believe we could propose a neutral resolution and expect to maintain our credibility with Germany, which we do owe them. What we'll need is a compromise..."

      Spaceports at French Guiana should be common ground for EU- cooperation and representation for all nations is needed for unity and strength. The deadlock is selfish and shameful!

      Send tweet.

      I contact my Foreign Minister and instruct him to try to organize a public summit between myself, Chancellor Heisenberg, First Consul Armata, King Felipe, President McCarthy, and President Roznowski. As the nations supporting the Ultimatum, it is our responsibility to ensure that it not only passes but ensures the prolonged and increased strength of the EU. The goal of this summit will be to call together the leaders supporting a free and open EU to propose a revised Dresden Ultimatum that can win over those who currently oppose it.

      Comment


      • ugh, mccartney. first thing we were about to agree on in years, and he does this. I don't know whether I should attempt to convince him or see if reverse psychology works considering they seem to be siding with germany almost entirely out of spite.
        Star wars has never had a zero-gravity scene.

        Comment


        • I continue communication with the U.S.

          "I was trying to contact Indonesia in order to avoid war by explaining that there is no way a Philippine vessel could have fired the torpedo that sank the Saluwaku, and they almost immediately hung up. Perhaps if you attempted to relay the facts, they'd listen...?"
          CLICK THE EGGS!:
          https://dragcave.net/image/DMwzS.htt...agcave.net/gif


          I don't understand

          Comment


          • "Very well. Then we must simply ensure the deadlock continues. Whoever ultimately prevails, when it comes to that, does not matter. I personally believe a French victory is best, simply because of the blow it would deal German interests in dominating the continent. The last thing we need is for those damned Germans to get uppity, now is it? So. Which countries are in any position to change their votes? What sort of deals are likely to occur? What are we to do if Poland is forced to vote first?" ... Ah, but we must ensure that everything goes smoothly. Make sure the vote occurs with minimal failures and in a timely manner. I would not hold any of them above sabotaging the vote the stall for time."

            I begin looking into the mandatory conscription of the Russian citizens, a measure I normally prefer not to take but may be necessary before long.
            Last edited by Gordyman; 04-08-17, 04:05 AM.

            Comment


            • "Yes, I do. I must thank you for telling me this in advance. Tell me, is there anything else I should know about this trade deal with Japan?"

              Comment


              • "They should respond to simple logic if they truly are innocent. Say that the investigation is for their own good. Right now, if they are truly innocent, they should be able to prove such by providing accurate and truthful information, otherwise we can only go off what other countries have said and shown, which suggests a false flag attack. This is the chance for them to take the stand and provide the defense case."
                Hello, it's me, Mk 214 EX, back again! Current Avatar: Super Saiyan Monkey?

                My NK profile, probably collecting cobwebs that I'm not even going to bother cleaning up.

                Do you want to be added to the NK Skype or Discord group? PM me!

                More stuff will be added with time. Patience is a virtue.

                Comment


                • "I just feel like they're going to hang up again due to my alliance with the Philippines. However, since you're not involved in the war, I'm sure they'll listen to you. Besides, I'm juggling way too many tasks as is. However, I can tell the countries I'm meeting with your idea, and see if we can push through on it."

                  I then proceed to do so.
                  CLICK THE EGGS!:
                  https://dragcave.net/image/DMwzS.htt...agcave.net/gif


                  I don't understand

                  Comment


                  • ((Added a bit of lore on the Mars colony and North Africa. Also Thedudxo I'm taking control of your country just temporarily, just to help advance regional affairs. You'll be able to reclaim at any time.))


                    Mk 214 EX BDDPPP
                    You continue your conversation.

                    Park seems rather neutral on the subject of an international investigation. He's certainly fine with it, but not a particularly warm supporter either.
                    Navarro is very much for it. Makes sense, considering what's at stake. He's the one on the firing lines, really.
                    Kusari asks why you've contacted him (well, not exactly, but that's effectively what he asks).

                    To Mk: Skye offers to talk to Suripto to create a more... neutral environment. She notes that their official claim is that no Indonesian ship was in position to fire the torpedo, and that nothing else was visible on sonar at the time, besides the Philippine defense platforms.

                    To BDDPPP: Hmm... Navarro's thoroughly supportive, but he won't be too much help in pushing the idea with Indonesia. Park might be a bit more helpful... but the real helpful thing would be to convince Kusari to back the effort for an investigation. After all, Bharat's the dominant force in the region.
                    Alternatively, you could try and get in contact with Australia... perhaps the closest thing to an Indonesian ally there is.


                    BloonofSteel
                    The obvious choice would be the Malaysian Prime Minister, Saleema bin Suriawati... he represents the most direct threat - well, the only possible threat, really, even if he can't touch your defenses. Though the Malay Confederation's intense drive to annex your country is a relatively popular stance even now, weakening the head of the movement would be a great blow. And... examining the news, they're an even bigger threat now. ((see bottom))

                    The next people who come to mind... either Indonesia or the Philippines. They're close by, and weakening their internal support would give you a way to support a side without taking sides. Indonesia has loads of human rights abuses and other unpleasantness to latch onto and exploit.

                    Another compelling option would be the Thai king. They're something of a natural enemy considering Malaysia, and you could even use it later as a bargaining chip with the Vietnamese, the natural friend.

                    Finally, Stamford offers to help play a media game in Europe - the situation there is fragile. Though it is far-removed, if you have a particular state you would like to see win out, now would be an ideal opportunity to influence events.

                    You don't have time to decide, however... as suddenly there's a tremendous bang, and then the lights go out.
                    When you re-orient yourself, you see that the electronics in the room have been knocked out, except for the holo-screen, on which there is an image of a young man...
                    ... it's... him. The terrorist. He's... saying something.

                    "I gave you fair warning, Generalissimo. Now it's time for you to pay the price. I've escaped already. Don't bother looking. I'm gone already."
                    Then, the image cuts out.


                    olegoleg123
                    Spring grins.
                    "Beautiful. I like it. Already getting started... have a look at the European news sites."

                    You do as she says, and pull up the major western news hubs...
                    It's subtle. Very subtle. But it's definitely there. Already, she's laying the groundwork... the headlines are just that tiny, imperceptible bit more jarring, less reassuring, more invoking the uncertain and the unsettling.

                    "Stocks done. And... there goes the Basel complex's power. Heh. Silly people and their silly protocols. They should really just have activated enhanced manual security to start off..."

                    With that, you wait a bit. Going smoothly so far. Chaos in Basel, and just the slightest uptick of dissatisfaction in Europe. Littler things right now... not time for the broader strokes, yet. Plan seems to be going nicely.


                    RaPiDJazZ
                    A good diplomatic analysis, for sure. But a lot to take in...
                    ... you could assemble the full Uitbreiding again, or just top diplomatic officials.

                    But for what you've got...
                    - Poland is indeed a problem. But... unless you can find a way to get Czechia and Slovakia to vote first as well... then neutralizing Poland itself doesn't take away its weapons.
                    - The various Scottish gambits are another possibility. The problem is, you get the feeling Noir will be annoyed no matter how you approach it, since she was the one who rallied the support for Epsilon in the first place. And judging by the quick reversal, McCarthy's a somewhat impulsive person.
                    - The request to Heisenberg would be a basically guaranteed no, you suspect... plus, Germany would need a reason to activate emergency powers. No way would they throw away their political credibility to support France, not even if it made them look like saints.

                    There's a rather larger problem, though. The Basel complex's power has just been knocked out, with the voting data corrupted in the process. That... should not have been possible.

                    Making matters worse, AI notes two further artificial intelligence presences around the Beneluxian network...
                    - A seemingly-innocuous incursion. The only detectable purpose: contacting a certain David Verdian.
                    - An... odder one. A bit of stock market manipulation... with the net effect of slightly bumping up French companies with assets in the Union. Nothing negative, and it doesn't look like the setup for a crash either.


                    big guy
                    Pop goes the Tweet. Ah, Twitter, what a wonderful platform...

                    But now it's time for business. Haakon is competent and more than willing to help out.
                    The other pro-Ultimatum countries are understandably worried about the state of affairs, and readily agree to the proposal within minutes.

                    With little time to act, after a bit of preparation, you jet off to Munich. Secretly, you would have preferred a Nordic city, but you know that would have been a bit of a diplomatic challenge to orchestrate... this will do for now.

                    And before you know it, you're in a conference room with some of the leading powers of Europe.

                    Chancellor Reinhardt Heisenberg.
                    First Consul Esmeralda Armata.
                    King Felipe IX.
                    President Hamilton McCarthy.
                    President Gabriel Roznowski.

                    All with their own agendas, their own questions to ask, their own ideas to push, their own ideologies and worldviews.
                    How do you address the group?


                    Dr Lord Evilstein
                    Oh, it's most definitely out of spite, or something like it.

                    From what you remember of McCarthy, he's not the most rational of people. Intelligent and charismatic... but intense and emotional. Impulsive, even.
                    It seems like his sudden policy reversal was just a knee-jerk reaction to Epsilon.

                    But... McCarthy's also stubborn. He isn't likely to back down easily.
                    Reverse psychology... maybe. You're not entirely sure how that would manifest.

                    A direct attempt at convincing him is a bit easier to conceive of. You'd have to somehow convince him that the UK's re-entrance is actually beneficial to the Scottish cause...


                    Gordyman
                    A run-down of the situation, then.

                    Most of the votes are pretty strongly set. A few exceptions...

                    - Scotland is fresh off their policy reversal. It's not inconceivable to think this could be a plot of some sort orchestrated by the French. Or if it is legitimate, they're one of the more likely ones to swap.
                    - Poland, while aligned with you, may present a problem if they miscalculate and throw their remaining two pieces (Czechia and Slovakia) around recklessly. Luckily... this will only really be a problem for the first re-vote. After enhanced manual security is implemented, the open debate should make it pretty easy for the Poles to figure out how to move their resources around. For the first re-vote... you suppose they'll just have to have Czechia and Slovakia vote late again.
                    - The Beneluxians are something of a wild card. They are strong French allies, but seem rather concerned about this particular debate...

                    - In terms of deals, you don't foresee a lot of negotiating. The most likely culprits would involve Scotland and the countries surrounding it. That's not the major concern.

                    - Delays constitute the bigger problem. You've already received reports of a power outage. Although backup power kicked in soon enough, much of the previous voting data was garbled and lost. Obviously, everyone remembers how the vote went, so this is a bit more of a symbolic problem, but still.

                    On the topic of conscription...
                    Standard protocol for wartime or if there is reason to suspect an imminent threat of war. In peacetime... while you could still pull it off, it would definitely be a risk. The Duma may be mostly ceremonial, but they still have the power to remove you from office... which would be done if the popular backlash was severe enough.


                    Telaxius
                    "Not much, Mr. Merriam. The way things are looking, it's going to be pretty standard fare.

                    The main item will be a mutual loosening of tariffs and the removal of a lot of the export restrictions that past administrations have slapped on. For Japan only, but we're optimistic this will lead to more opportunities. Basically, we'll let you turn an actual profit in international markets, for once.

                    That's... about all that's relevant, I believe. Mr. Merriam, please do make sure your opening goes well there. We want to send a strong message to the American people that trade is good for American businesses, and the American people.

                    Any questions?"


                    ~~~


                    GLOBAL EVENT #4: BASEL DEADLOCK
                    With the matter of the Dresden Ultimatum finally having reached the European legislature, the results thus far have not been pretty.

                    The initial vote was an unheard-of perfect tie, due to the last-minute defection of several Eastern and Central European countries. After some momentary disarray, the delegates in Basel began executing the ancient tie-breaker protocols. Never before used due to the sheer improbability of a tie, the protocols are byzantine and inefficient.

                    Further complicating matters was a power outage that hit the entire complex. Though manual backup power was restored soon enough, many see it as a bad omen of what is to come. The legislature's floor has been re-opened to debate, in an attempt to find a compromise acceptable to all parties. But considering the circumstances, there does not seem to be much hope.

                    Pro-Ultimatum leaders have gathered in Munich. Though the purpose of the summit is not officially known, it seems inevitable that it revolves around the ongoing deadlock. With unknown factors at play, is a satisfactory resolution even possible?


                    ~~~


                    SOUTH PACIFIC WAR ~ THE DEVIL'S BARGAIN
                    Hours ago, the government of the Malay Confederation announced the signing of a "basic non-aggression pact" with their Indonesian neighbors. It seems inevitable that this is a response to the ongoing war between Indonesia and the Philippines and Korea, which thus far has stalled with no decisive action in either direction.

                    Considering that no such offer was made to the other side, the Malaysian government's bias seems clear. Making matters worse, though, the so-called "basic" agreement has been rumored to contain provisions for material support by the Malaysians to the Indonesia, and even for future military cooperation. Could this be the factor that will swing the balance of the war against the Korean and Philippine turtle strategy?
                    Gold Auros, champion of irrelevant randomness.

                    I also enjoy making RPG games!

                    Comment


                    • "Haha, yeah. Bureaucracy has always been the enemy of reason...and now we get to utilize that to the full extent of it."

                      They continue executing their plans, slowly, but surely and thoroughly...

                      "Now... That summit in Munich... If we can get some information about it while still staying undercover, that could be a game changer not to mention provide us with some ...valuable material, if you know what I mean. We'll obviously have to be VERY careful about that one though..."

                      Comment


                      • "Good grief... I've got a lot on my hands."

                        First, check on the medical advances we've made and get the power back on.

                        Next, I'll ask Stamford to run a quick scan all over the country. Surely a measly terrorist can't evade a hyperintelligent AI.

                        After that, I'll have Stamford pore over Indonesia. Not only are there enough human rights abuses to exploit and stir up a bit of a fire within the people, I could shut down any further plans the Malaysian government could pull. I won't do anything JUST yet, though...

                        Finally, I'll try and organize a meeting. The teenager was in a group, right? They must have had their reasons for joining it...
                        I've been gone for like six months and suddenly I don't think I should reveal all of what about me changed right away.
                        Anyway go check out TBKA it's pretty cool.
                        Also Tinkopalypse.
                        Knights of Noir is good too.

                        Comment


                        • "Verdian, Verdian... I don't know anyone named Verdian. Anywhere. I'll need some information about him to determine exactly why contact is being made.

                          The stock market manipulation... I expect that has something to do with my moderate speech earlier. It must look like I'm heading towards Germany... and that's exactly the image I will take. I will not ally with someone who's first action with the tiny bit of power they were given was a cyberattack. Regardless, that speech looked frightening enough for a deadlock break that the stock market was manipulated in an attempt to bring me back into French lines. And as such, this must've been done by someone with a vested interest in keeping the deadlock for as long as possible, presumably the same benefactor that performed the recent power outage.

                          Manipulation as serious as this is significant enough to call together the council... but the deadlock's interruption also gives me enough time to convene the council tomorrow. Because of the obvious level of manipulation they are willing to go to achieve this deadlock, we're simply unable to affect other countries without showing our hand. However, the fact that they are willing to improve our economy in order to get me to stay in line is an excellent opportunity to manipulate the deadlock to get at the very least something out of it.

                          The aforementioned request to Germany to activate their tie-breaking powers for France is a perfect opportunity. A moderate, public message for cooperation, a willingness to lead for the betterment of the entire EU... with the subtext of not doing this for France but to improve our relationship with Germany, a gesture of faith on their part for a stronger EU. The only issue is how to achieve this without damaging our relationship with France and looking convincing enough to be seen as a possible change in stance towards being for the ultimatum... we need to do this quickly to get the most benefit out of 4 days of stock-market manipulation.

                          AI, can you draft a message I can make to the world regarding this issue?"
                          Originally posted by Cave Johnson
                          "All right, I've been thinking. When life gives you lemons, don't make lemonade. Make life take the lemons back! Get mad! I don't want your damn lemons, what am I supposed to do with these? Demand to see life's manager! Make life rue the day it thought it could give Cave Johnson lemons! Do you know who I am? I'm the man who's gonna burn your house down! With the lemons! I'm gonna get my engineers to invent a combustible lemon that burns your house down!"

                          Comment


                          • Hey, AI, can you think of something that will sway McCarty? I'm a little worried that the only thing that'll get him to agree with us is a particularly high stakes rock paper scissors.
                            Star wars has never had a zero-gravity scene.

                            Comment


                            • "Hm. Very good. Very good. However ... I believe I understand the situation well enough. Hopefully Poland doesn't muck it up too much."

                              I begin pacing once again.

                              "And now onto other matters. Can any of you give me an idea of how Singapore's Skyshield works? It is truly an impressive piece of technology. In addition, I want further research in energy generation. Finally, I believe it is time to revisit an old friend."

                              Comment


                              • I stand up, looking around the table at each of the leaders before speaking. Heisenberg. Armata. Felipe. McCarthy. And lastly, the wildcard that is Roznowski. "Gentlemen," I begin, and then nodding towards the First Consul with a smile, "and Lady, you're called here because of your expressed commitment towards a European Union that is devoted to cooperation and the sharing of resources. Due to an... unexpected... tie, however, the future that we hope for is at stake."

                                I'm careful to avoid any direct or implied jabs at Roznowski's credibility as I continue.

                                "Rather than following through with the complex and time-consuming established protocol for breaking a tie, I believe the best course of action is to propose a new resolution; one that specifically makes sure that the interests of all member states are addressed. The French and Beneluxians (wrongly) see the Dresden Ultimatum as a simple German land-grab, which we know it's not," I pause and take a breath before continuing, knowing that it's critical my mext statement is well-received, "I believe the best way to dispel these fears is to allow the French to maintain the territory, but to make the spaceports and research stations common EU ground."

                                I end my introductory speech, looking around the table at my counterparts before cracking a soft smile, "Any questions?"

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