I evemailed the CEO of FINEG to grudgingly acknowledge the success of their war efforts against us. He evemailed back an explanation for their war declaration and included a ransom demand of 1.5 billion ISK to end the war.
I had a lapse in judgement. Knowing that one of our recruits was the reason for their war against us, I offered to expel him from the corp and pay only the war dec fees to end the war. My reasoning internally was that Strife was dying anyways so expelling the member was not a huge punishment for him and I evemailed him to let him know what was going on so he wasn't blindsided.
I should have talked to the member first and let kim know what I was thinking before making that counter offer but I didn't. Stupid.
Anyways, FINEG came back with an offer of a 1 billion ISK ransom along with expulsion of the pilot in question, along with a description of extending the war to alt corps and suicide ganks with alt characters in high sec of haulers should we refuse. Well, it became obvious this was not negotiations but rather a little bit of extortion and since they are kicking our asses in the war, not surprising.
I told him no thanks. I saw no need for making outrageous counter demands like some other Strife members suggested. We're losing, no point in making us look stupid. So I posted in the main discussion area about FINEG's demand and how I told them no.
Of course, the member in question came forward asking how it was I was talking out of both sides of my mouth. Sigh. I forgot to evemail him to tell him negotiations were a sham and he was safe and the combination of events left him wondering what I was really doing. So I tried to clear the air in the forums explaining the course of events and accepting responsibility for the confusion.
In hindsight, I should have never considered expelling a member who has done nothing untoward our members or corp, but I felt it was my responsibility to see if the distracting war could be ended so that Strife would have a chance to regroup.
I feel like things are slipping through my fingers. What was a friendly slowdown for the corp is turning into a a large degree of frustration and some accusations of failure to step up. Something tells me its going to get ugly before its over.