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1st Monkton Crusade

by Vern Dernberger

Monkton, Maryland - August 28, 2005:

As the world's sole R/C Tank Combat super-power, the Maryland Attack Group has pursued a relentless quest for "peace through superior fire-power". The most recent evidence of that paradoxical pursuit is the expected addition of four operational tanks to their arsenal. Although details are still sketchy for some of these vehicles, this reporter expects MAG to announce the addition of a Leopard, Cromwell and Comet to their ranks, following close behind their announcement of the new Jagdtiger last week. "These vehicles represent some of the best technology in the hobby", stated Dr. Von Hupple, Director of Tri-Pact Laboratories, "and we're expecting them to perform flawlessly on the battlefield". This reporter has also learned that the venerable Tiger-1 has undergone yet another overhaul, reportedly resulting in a state-of-the-art turret system. "We continue to expend the resources required to keep one of the icons of the hobby operational", Dr. Von Hupple explained, "despite the huge cost in time and money".

Although MAG leaders continue to stress that the vehicles are being developed solely for "homeland defense" and "force replenishment", many insiders believe that MAG may be gearing up for a long awaited conflict with the Northern Barbarians. "Absolutely not", says Frank Pittelli, MAG's VP of Marketing and a member of the secretive Pittelli Clan, "these vehicles will be used primarily for peaceful efforts, such as charity fund-raising, programs for dis-advantaged children and hurricane relief". He continued to state that, "MAG is primarily a charitable organization, despite previous reports. When the Tiger-1 rolls into a children's hospital, the joy on their little faces is priceless."

Marketing speak aside, other parts of the Maryland Attack Group appear to have different motives. One MAG member close to the inner circle of leaders had this to say on condition of anonymity, "If the Canadians ever show up on the battlefield, we'll crush them". Known only as Mr. M, the insider stated that MAG would use it's military might whenever and wherever it suited it's purposes. "It's time to kick some #$*". Another insider, known only as "Dr. J" stated that "we're tired of subsidizing the public relations tours of the Tiger-1 ... it's a technological piece of #$%^ and we need to retire the darn thing instead of wasting money on it."

Many industry experts believe that such a clear difference of direction within the MAG leadership could lead to a major conflict within the group, possibly even leading to a civil war. This reporter has recently learned that such a conflict may indeed happen as soon as September 17, 2005 when a large number of battlers from the Maryland vicinity (including Pennsylania, Virginia, West Virginia and New Jersey) meet in Monkton Maryland for a "day of technological exchange", according to MAG marketing literature. Frank Pittelli stated that "we're getting together at St. Paul's School for a relaxing day of information exchange and to spread our message of peace to that region". On the other hand, Mr. M. stated that "There's going to be a shake-up on the 17th ... it's time for the bleeding hearts in our ranks to step aside".

With a total attendance of 11 operational tanks, 3 artillery pieces and 3 support vehicles, the Monkton event could either be the biggest peaceful exchange of information or the biggest battle ever seen in the hobby. In either case, this reporter will be watching from nearby to see exactly what transpires at the "1st Monkton Crusade".