February 2002

- Opening
- Fleet Awards
- Ship Destinations
- Interview with Adm Star
- News Quickies
- Book/Movie of the Month
- Closing


This should be an exciting issue. It, of course, has all the stuff you're used to seeing: the awards, new quickies, and the new Book and Movie of the month sections. But, don't worry, we also managed to shed some light on the fleet's re-newal and we have a very thoughtful interview with CinC Star to share with you all as well.

Note: This is being sent out to all ships that were active in IDFleet during January. For those ships which left Independence Fleet this will be the last issue they receive. All the best wishes!


Dispite the fleet shake-ups January saw some new IDFleet records set and a lot of high quality SIMing.

That alone made the decisions hard to make for the recently split admiralty. In the end though, excellence triumphed over squabbles and the awards got out on time!

January's Best Post belonged to the Potomac's Lt. Aellie. Her #158, which resolved a mirror-universe mission, was very to-the-point and wrapped up events very nicely, tying up all the loose ends. The post was also just the right length: long enough to get everything done but short enough to maintain complete interest.

The George W. Bush's intelligence officer, Dick Phelps, won a second consecutive funniest post award. This is the third time that Dick has won that distinction on the fleet-wide level. His post #65 deals with Dick buying popcorn while at a boxing match. An altercation breaks out with another attending StarFleet officer and Dick ends up falling into the ring!

The Rookie of the Month Award for January went to the Avalon's new Tactical Officer, Lance McGowan. This is in part because of the new individual posting record set by Lt. McGowan who posted 28 times in January, also winning the Most Posts award.

Cmdr. Be'Karlsa, the Potomac's XO, earned her ship's second award in January for her excellent recruitment efforts. Through some hard work, she managed to recruit a record 6 people to the Mac! This would be enough to have won the recruitment award in any month to date.

The most improved fleet member for January was the USS Washington's Lt. James "Brit" Britanicus. He posted 16 times in Jan, up from 7 in December. He also incorporates other characters into his posts and always adds to the story in thoughtful ways.

The Washington's XO, James "Rook" Mirtoh was the fleet's January MVP. Cmdr. Mirtoh posted 25.5 times in Jan (a ship record on the Washington) and managed to recruit two new members during the month. Rook's posts were all excellent as well -- one was nominated for best post, an award the Washington has yet to earn and another received an honorable mention for funniest post. Through it all, Cmdr. Mirtoh was active on the fleet forum, starting and participating in several good discussions there, and was able to help out his crewmates.

Congratulations to all the hard working award winners!


This is a quick run-down of which ships have stayed with the fleet and what happened to those ships that left:

* * *

Staying with IDFleet:

- Currently Active
USS George W. Bush, NCC-2004
USS Washington, NCC-11988
USS Liberty, NCC-4003
USS Patriot, NCC-26782

- Soon to be launched by IDFleet:
USS Defiance, NCC-72480
USS Pioneer, NCC-81277
SAT Command Center

* * *

Left IDFleet:

- Became Independent SIMS
USS Potomac, NCC-23512
USS Griffin, NCC-1979
USS Goldeneye, NCC-84653

- Joined Neo-UtopiaFleet
USS Avalon, NCC-3002
USS Chesapeake, NCC-19807

- Joined Competing "Independence Fleet"
USS Sunfure, NCC-3001

- Died
USS Destiny, NCC-443


In this issue, the fleet interviewer sat down with the fleet's new Commander in Chief, Adm. Star for some very in depth questions and answers.

* * *

Interviewer: That you for joining us, Adm. Star, you're the first person to be interviewed for the newsletter twice. Of course, the first time we spoke you were only a VAdm. What event do you feel is most responsible for generating the changes we see in the fleet today?

Adm Star: Change is inevitable. As far as an event that caused the recent changes, I'd have to say that the defection of Captains Sutak and Edwards sparked everything.

Interviewer: What reasons had they given for leaving?

Adm Star: They weren't very specific at all. Edwards never gave me any reasons. Sutak did give me a little bit of information, mostly complaints about West's leadership and his decisions. However, I think the main thing was they both just wanted to be admirals. I think they just wanted control over a fleet, so they started their own, the Neo-Utopia Fleet.

Interviewer: Was it this dissatisfaction over West's leadership that lead to the branching of the fleet?

Adm Star: Not entirely. Myself and RAdm Seldon had spoken on several occasions about West's poor decisions and inability to effectively lead the fleet -- and especially his division. Our first plan of action was to come to him privately and help him better develop his leadership. Before we could act however, the Avalon and Chesapeake left the fleet. We felt we had to approach West immediately. We tried two compromises with him, to help keep fleet unity. He didn't want any part with any of them. He became very angry.

Adm Star: As I said before, I think the main reason Sutak and Edwards left was so they could be admirals; but yes, dissatisfaction over West was part of it.

Interviewer: What exactly were the circumstances surrounding West's firing of yourself and RAdm Seldon?

Adm Star: It was in response to our second compromise offer. Seldon had developed a beautiful compromise to keep the fleet together. Myself and Commodore Decade thought it was an excellent idea. I really thought West would agree to it. However, it only made him even more furious with everyone and he fired myself and RAdm Seldon.

Interviewer: The Potomac has just announced that it will continue on as an independent SIM. You've said that IDFleet doesn't need any one ship to be successful. But what is your reaction to this latest news?

Adm Star: If Krol wants to do that, that's fine with me. ID Fleet does not need any ship or anyone to be successful. We've already shown we can build from nothing and create a strong fleet. This time, we're starting with several strong ships and we'll continue to develop the fleet.

Adm Star: The Potomac has never been a strong ship, it has struggled during its entire run until this past month when RAdm Seldon joined the mission and Commander Be'Karlsa did some excellent recruiting. I really don't think they will last as an independent sim. I do hope they prove me wrong though.

Interviewer: What do you think that IDFleet has to offer her member ships that they can't get as an independent SIM -- or the member of another fleet?

Adm Star: Lots of stuff. ID Fleet is the only fleet I know about that recognizes individual crewmembers of her ships for excellence in the form of monthly awards. ID Fleet also provides a very informative and entertaining newsletter. I think these two institutions, the awards and newsletter, help to build a sense of community within the fleet.

Adm Star: The fleet has many other things to offer as well. ID Fleet ships get much more exposure through the fleet than they can otherwise -- which makes recruiting new people much, much easier. A good bit of the GWB crew is made up of people that just stumbled accross the ID Fleet website. Also, each ship has an admiral, their division director, that they can come to with any problems they’re facing. This person can assist with recruiting, join a mission to help develop better posting, or even help with a ship's own website. There is a lot that ID Fleet has to offer to her ships, things that a ship simply doesn't have if they are independent or a member of a fleet that doesn't practice these principles.

Interviewer: Besides the Potomac, several other former IDFleet ships have become independent SIMs. What factors did they give in making this decision?

Adm Star: I'm not really sure, none of them have given me any definitive reasons. I think a lot of them had several bad experiences with West, where he tried to hand out meaningless, and sometimes harmful, orders to the fleet. Many people grew tiresome of him. I think some of them didn't want to be under someone like that again. I can assure everyone that no one like West will be a member of the admiralty again.

Adm Star: I spoke with several low-profile members of the fleet during all of this and they seemed to hold the opinion that West tried to bully people with his position.

Interviewer: Will those independent ships have the option of re-joining IDFleet in the future and, if so, under what circumstances?

Adm Star: We haven't decided that yet. I am leaning towards not letting them back in. If they're going to leave the fleet after everything we've done for them, how can we count on their loyalty in the future? A decision about this has not been made yet, but I don't think they will be allowed back in.

Interviewer: Will there be any new ideas or programs that fleet members can expect to see anytime soon?

Adm Star: Yes, one program will be to have each division develop its own distinct identity. This will include each division coming up with a mission statement and possibly making their own websites. I can't reveal too much about this now, but expect something soon. Also, in an effort to get more traffic to the ID Fleet site, we have joined several Star Trek banner exchange programs. This should bring interested people to the sims, help out with recruitment a bit. There are several other things; the website will be redesigned and we'll have some sort of one year anniversary celebration this summer. There are many new and exciting things that will be happening with ID Fleet.

Interviewer: Well, do you have any predictions about where the fleet will be, say, three months into the future?

Adm Star: ID Fleet will continue to be succussful in provding a fun atmosphere for Star Trek fans to write with other fans, that's what it's all about. Some people try to turn it into politics and a power game, but it's really about having fun -- that's how we look at it. We will become the best role play by email fleet on the net, providing many entertaining sims for Trekkers.. We're having fun with what we do -- and we're going to keep doing it.

Interviewer: Well, it seems the time alloted for the interview has expired. Thanks again for sharing so much with us, admiral.

Adm Star: Thank you.


- VAdm Star, CO of the George W. Bush and Director of Deep Space Exploration, is promoted to Admiral and becomes Commander in Chief of Independence Fleet.

- Comm. Decade takes over as Director of the Special Operations Division, which has been re-named the Special Assignments Taskforce. The USS Liberty is the flagship of the re-made division.

- RAdm Seldon, CO of the USS Washington, has announced that his crew will celebrate George Washington's Birthday (Feb 22nd) as a ship holiday. They will use the event to, among other things, launch a character fiction section.

- The creation of a Fleet Academy is placed on hold indefinately.

- The USS Avalon set a new fleet record for monthly posting, 176. This edged out the old record, 173, held by the Liberty for August.

- The DRForce will launch a new ship, the USS Defiance, NCC-72480 on March 1st. Capt. Samuel Meriod will be in command.

- The DSE will shortly be launching a new ship as well, the USS Pioneer, Ncc-81277. Josie O'Neal will command her. A launch date has not yet been established.

- The SAT Command Center, the fleet's first starbase, will launch in the coming weeks. It is under the command of Cmdr. Jonathan Webb.

- Adm Star updated the History page on the fleet website to reflect recent events.


-- "Ender's Game" by Orson Scott Card

About two hundred years from now Earth has twice been invaded by an alien race known commonly as the "buggers" and nearly destroyed both times. To prepare for a third invasion human society has re-organized itself, forming a unified, supranational government. That government begins programs to breed and train military leaders.

With the 3rd invasion looming, Ender Wiggin, one of the products of the eugenics program, is mankind's great hope. He is the greatest military genius in history. He is a natural leader of men. He is, in the minds of all military leaders, the only person capable of leading the human fleet to victory over the buggers. Ender Wiggin is 6 years old.

In the course of the short book (which weighs in at about 106,000 words) Ender must prepare himself for his task (a huge sacrifice in itself) and then face the Buggers in a battle that will decide the future of two races. The third invasion has been launched, will he be in time?

The story deals with many themes: childhood and adulthood; enmity and friendship; victory and defeat. It exists on many levels but still manages to tell a great story. "Ender's Game" is an easy to read novel that plays very quickly and contains numerous surprises. All science fiction fans should read this excellent book.

First published in 1985 "Ender's Game" won both the Hugo and Nebula awards.


-- "Back to the Future"

Plots involving time travel are nothing new to Star Trek fans, ST4:TVH and First Contact both dealt with it. Unlike those two movies though, the time travel involved in Feb's Movie of the Month, "Back to the Future," is unintentional.

Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd), an eccentric scientist finally makes something that works: a time machine fashioned from a DeLorean. Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) is accidentally sent back in time by the DeLorean while trying to escape Libyan terrorists. Then, its up to him with the help of Doc Brown of the past to get back to the future while repairing the timeline he damaged.

"Back to the Future" incorporates a perfect amount of clever humor that really helps the story shine. All the elements of time travelling work very well together: paradoxes it creates, solutions it presents, and the tension it fosters all make this a great movie. And there is enough foreshadowing and enough little hidden surprises to make this well worth watching several times.

All in all, "Back to the Future" is an excellent movie, great for the whole family. Go see it again if its been a while!

Realeased in 1985 "Back to the Future" is rated as the 163rd best movie of all time by the Internet Movie Database (www.imdb.com). Christopher Lloyd, who plays Doctor Emmett Brown, also played Commander Krudge in ST3:TSFS.


Well, the fleet has seen a lot of changes since the last issue of the newsletter. But the fleet's mission remains the same: having fun through SIMing. And we still have our greatest asset: committed fans who are able to put petty squables asside to make something just a little bit bigger than ourselves.

I'd also like to take just a moment to thank Adm Star for all the hard work he's put in to re-form the fleet. His leadership has re-inspired my own desire for SIMing and his excitement over the fleet's future has really motivated me over the past weeks. I'd be really surprised if no one else in IDFleet can say the same thing. Its taken a lot of work for Star to re-make what was broken, but it's going to be a lot stronger for his efforts.

Until next month...

RAdm Robert Seldon, (Jacob)
CO: USS Washington, NCC-11988
Dir: Defense Response Force
Fleet Secretary