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The Silent Black Ocean (Chapter Cover Art)

Chapter 9 - The Silent Black Ocean[]

3165



Overview: Kowloon Coast Guard 9th Cutter Division[]

The 9th Cutter Division was formed by expansion of the 9th Coast Guard Quarantine Squadron in 3147, initially drawing personnel from all 13 worlds in the Quarantine Zone, as well as volunteers from Rockjack spacer communities in the same region.  Operationally, Division 9 was tasked with long-range recon into Jade Falcon held territory along the Lyran periphery, but later in the Falcon War, their area of operations was pushed deeper into the near periphery to locate hold-outs and cut any flow of resources, reinforcements, or retreat for the remains of the Falcon Ordun.
 

Postwar, in the power vacuum that resulted from the brutal suppression of the Jade Falcons, the 9th assumed long-term station as an anti-piracy and 'public service' force, much the same role that the Coast Guard itself held for nearly seventy years in the Quarantine Zone.  The 9th Squadron is primarily equipped with the longer-ranged and slightly roomier Sampan Mk IV class cutters, and has a 'tender fleet' of 4 Star Lord class jumpships, each carrying supply and consumable dropships that are exchanged via LCN courier flights on an annual basis.

By 3165, Coast Guard Division 9 has gained something of a 'face of the commonwealth' reputation among the many tiny independent worlds in the region.  Their antipiracy efforts, along with rendering aid to the few local independent spacers, and their strict refusal to become entangled in local politics has led to rumors of a resurgent Star League.  It has also led to an upswing in the fortunes of poorer worlds in the region, as stable trade routes and a neutral presence to mediate disputes tends to increase trade while decreasing tensions between independent statelets, and some view the presence of this force as the first steps toward genuine imposition of civil law in the region in the absence of the Falcons.

In keeping with the KCG's policies, rotations in the 9th Division's AOR are six to twelve months duration, during which vessels conduct wandering patrol, postal delivery, communication and technical service, and jumpship inspection and repair. 

In 3155, Coast Guard tenders delivered a number of small 'modular station' modules to several systems, to serve as 'coaling stations' for Coast Guard operations and as central control positions.  Local sovereignty of inhabited systems is observed by Coast Guard and their 'coaling stations' are located in uninhabited systems close to trade routes.

  • Symbology
    The 9th Division uses the standard Kowloon Coast Guard leaping orca roundel, with a typeface '09' serving as background, and the motto "We Keep The Peace".
  • Uniform
    Like both LCN and KCG regulation, the standard uniform is a skinsuit worn under a working duty uniform.    Working Duties are generally blue (Enlisted and lower NCO), Khaki (NCO and officer) overgarments bearing the assigned ship's number, rank insignia, and standard gear harness.  Vessel commanders add a long blue-black 'greatcoat' at their discretion.  Cap badges are the Coast Guard crest, and caps are white (Officer) or Khaki (NCO).  For enlisted, a ball-cap with 'scrambled eggs' bill and the name of the vessel said crewman is assigned to in gold-thread letters.
  • Manner and Behaviors
    Professionalism is the watch-word for personnel in the 9th, and woe betide the Nugget who forgets it, because he or she won't forget it for long, and will have to work hard to live it down.  Despite this, the 9th division is one of the reasons the Kowloon Coast Guard has specific regulations detailing how far a prank or practical joke may go before it crosses into the realm of an actionable nonjudicial punishment offense. (beyond that point, of course, comes courts-martial.)
    Due in large part to the exceptionally long distance to home-ports and long duration of missions, crews are selected for the ability to work together ad maintain personal stability, and when not selected, peer pressure and constant activity tends to reshape assigned personnel to fit into the group.

Institutionally, the 9th Division takes quite seriously their 'jurisdiction' which, under the charter that the Coast Guard formed, is rather large for any law-enforcement organization, thus they tend to treat the spacelanes of the deep periphery as 'their beat' and civilians in it as their responsibility-even civilians that aren't paying the taxes that pay their wage.

Thus, their reputation for answering any distress call if they are in range.

Since adopting their current 'patrol status' in the region, 211 members of the 9th division  have died in the line of duty, and the 9th Division's various squadrons have added additional battle-stars in action against encroaching bandit and pirate units to their hulls.

  • Funding and Financial
      Kowloon's Coast Guard is funded primarily from the economic activity of one world: Kowloon, with 1.5 billion residents (Planetside) and 500 million or so non-planetary system natives or "Rockjacks" (whom also serve as both primary customers for the Coast Guard's space arm, and as much of the serving technical, command, and leadership staff).  With Nationalization (first in the 3068 through 3082 state of emergency, and then with the declared state of emergency in 3135) a portion of operating and procurement funding was brought in from LCAF and LCN coffers.  At present, the Coast Guard's budget pie is sliced with 50% coming from Kowloon, another 15% from worlds in the former Quarantine zone, and the rest from National funding allocated from the LCAF budget.  Supplemental funding efforts are also often conducted, but such fundraising is not treated as a reliable income source for budgeting, and is 'banked' against emergencies.
    What KIND of emergencies?  the sort that require an emergency call up of retired personnel, or the sudden need to procure additional replacement hulls.  You know, emergencies.


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