On Friday an Alliance Mission Day was declared: all corp taxes were to be set to 100% and everyone was to run missions and loot and salvage for their corporation to donate the proceeds to the alliance cap ship program.
I logged in for a bit early on and ran some missions with some corp mates in my shiny new Navy Raven. Here is me and a mate in his Golem... sigh, just when I thought I had the best mission ship.
Later on in the evening, I logged in again to help with the cause. Only this time the voice comms and channels were filled with chattering voices talking about how a POS of a corporation in the alliance was under attack in Verge Vendor!
The site was 20 jumps away and some debate was had as to whether or not the small tower acting as a cyno waypoint could be saved in time as the enemy fleet had two carriers and a Moros dreadnought. But the enemy was attacking the POS guns first and we determined there was time. We assembled a fleet of battleships and ECM and hit the road.
I picked a Falcon to boost the ECM count and I like doing the sneaky-cloak thing.
The enemy fleet consisted of the aforementioned cap ships and about 14 battleships. We had a smaller number of combat battleships but two Scorpions and a handful of Falcons which really tilted the favour to us. Targets were assigned and we jumped into system.
The enemy obviously had warning cause they up and ran as we warped to the station. We did catch one slow Dominix battleship that tarried too long, and one fighter got left behind from one of the carriers. We saved the POS and the enemy docked up. At this time I had to log and I don't know what happened with negotiations at this point.
* * * * *
Which brings up a point I want to discuss.
While our fleet approached our alliance diplomats tried to determine what was going on. During the conversations the hostiles tried to suggest some compromises and such. I commented to the fleet that it seemed to be a bad decisions to begin negotiations after opening fire first. Someone else said "No no, that's the way to do it: get your gun on their neck and negotiate from a position of strength."
I didn't follow up as we were in fleet and approaching the target, but I do want to say here I strongly disagree. While its true that sometimes you have to show your strength for someone to take you seriously, I think its very stupid to smack someone and then ask them nicely to move out of your way. It forces your target into a corner: either stand up and fight back, or lose face and retreat. It cuts off options of future cooperation and compromise. We were forced to go and defend our POS and attack agressively whereas diplomatic negotiations might have avoided the conflict altogether.
Unless you're looking for a fight, opening communication with a blaster or missle first is not the wise choice.