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The Neo-Terran Front (or NTF) was a rebel group led by Admiral Aken Bosch, former commander of the GTVA 6th Fleet. They came to prominence after a violent military coup in the Polaris system, eighteen months prior to the events of FreeSpace 2. Within weeks, a domino effect saw the governments of Regulus and Sirius fall to the NTF.
- This article is about the ideals of the Neo-Terran Front. For a complete chronolgy of events concerning the Neo-Terran Front, see NTF Rebellion.
Bosch's vision of Neo-Terra informs the ideology of his movement. With contact to Earth severed since the end of the Great War, Bosch imagined a new home world for the Terran race, a utopia that would restore the grandeur of the lost world. As the people of Earth once relied on Polaris to help them navigate the seas, the North Star would become the spiritual and political compass for Terrans of the new era. Bosch's message had a profound impact on the so-called "Lost Generation," born during the post-war Reconstruction. Bosch's message resonated with many people, largely because his pro-Terran ideology, and eventually the actions and attitudes of the NTF as a whole, were explicitly anti-Vasudan. The NTF opposed any Terran-Vasudan alliance and called for the dissolution of the Galactic Terran-Vasudan Alliance. The NTF core systems had suffered political and economic chaos throughout the post-war Reconstruction, and the Vasudans' miraculous recovery under Khonsu II's leadership embittered those Terrans still struggling to rebuild their own systems. Bosch exploited this anti-Vasudan sentiment to achieve his own political ends. The Neo-Terran Front provided the youth of Polaris, Regulus, and Sirius with a cause to fight and die for.
That cause, however, was not all it seemed. While Bosch's apparent motives were relatively simple and straightforward, he saw the entire NTF Rebellion as little more than a means to an end, calling them a "herd of stupid cattle." Bosch's true intentions, while not made explicitly clear, essentially involved dissolving the alliance with the Vasudans in order to forge a new alliance with the Shivans, an alliance which, in Bosch's mind, would have protected humanity forever. Almost all of the NTF's ideologies and actions can be traced back to this particular goal. Bosch's anti-Vasudan message allowed him to target Vasudan systems, where Ancient ruins holding key information about the Shivans could be plundered. He constructed the NTF Iceni, a fast but heavily armed vessel for his eventual trip into Shivan space, and he built ETAK in secret (apparently in the Boadicea asteroid facility) to hide his true intentions from the GTVA (though actions by the GTVA suggest that at least elements of Alliance Command knew what he was doing and intended to allow him to complete his work, before taking ETAK for themselves).
The downfall of the NTF came about due to a combination of factors, but can largely be attributed to two things: Firstly, as Bosch's goal grew nearer, he began to expend resources on noncritical (to the NTF) battles which would allow him to enter the nebula to make contact with the destroyers. This severely weakened the NTF fleets which were already reeling due to the second factor in their downfall, the deployment of the GTVA Colossus.
No dates more specific than the year (2367) are given for the events of FreeSpace 2, so we cannot be certain of the exact date of the rebellion's emergence, and it could be any time between the June of 2365 and June of 2366.
When the Iceni is destroyed in Return to Babel, the ship transmits a message as it breaks apart: It's too late, Command. This secret's going to hell with us. Trust me, you don't want to know. Rusk out. Admiral Bosch and his cabal likely knew far more than revealed by the in-game dialog.