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 Message
    From: STRACZYNSKI [Joe]
 Subject: Thanks for the vote of confidence....
      To: GENIE  
    Date: 12/2/1991 4:42:00 PM  

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Thanks for the vote of confidence. I don't think you'll be disappointed.

And now, at last, some hard info.

The date: 2257 A.D.

We have gone to the stars, and found that we are not alone. We have
moved quickly out, establishing relations with other civilizations that has
let us leapfrog technologies via an information and cultural exchange with at
least one other culture. Many contacts have been friendly. Some have not
been quite so benign.

From 2250 through 2252, war raged between the Earth Alliance and the
Minbari, an alien federation. The EA was losing, badly. As a last resort, a
suicide perimeter was set up around Earth, known as the Line. Every last ship
we had was on the Line, in a desperate defense of Homeworld.

And on the brink of winning the war, just as they were breaking through
the Line...the Minbari surrendered. To this date, no one knows why. They
could have won, but chose not to. The secret behind their surrender will
gradually play a part in our story.

But that was now 5 years ago, in our story. There is now an uneasy peace
between the Earth Alliance and the four other alien federations. To help
cement that peace, the EA has constructed BABYLON 5.

BABYLON 5 is a five-kilometer-long space station in neutral space more or
less central to all five of the different alliances, human or alien. To get
to one or the other, you have to pass through this sector of space. Thus,
Babylon 5 has been created as a sort of port-of-call for travelers, statesmen,
emissaries, traders, refugees and other, less savory characters. Five
kilometers long and two kilometers wide, Babylon 5 is divided into separate,
discreet sections that rotate at differing speeds to provide different
gravities to accommodate those who come to the station. There are also
sections with alternate atmospheres.

The station boasts living quarters, customs areas, docking bays, meeting
areas, a casino, several bars/nightclubs, command and control spheres fore and
aft, and a decent defensive grid. In addition, each of the various
federations has one official representative aboard the station (with the
station's commander representing the Earth Alliance), so that it also
functions as a sort of mini-U.N.

It is home to humans and aliens in various roles, some arriving or
departing every day, others working there full-time. They live on the very
edge of the frontier, in the sense that if they get into trouble, there's no
one who can arrive in time to help them. Because of the nature of the
travelers, they bring their stories with them to Babylon 5 rather than having
to seek them out. The stories are of people in flight, seeking sanctuary;
stories of smugglers, assassins, traders, mappers, dignitaries and others, all
on urgent missions of one sort or another.

If STAR TREK was "Wagon Train to the Stars," then BABYLON 5 is Casablanca
in space.

It is humanity's last hope for peace, a single hope in the middle of an
uneasy, fragile peace.

And it *is* fragile, and dangerous. It is called BABYLON 5 because the
first three efforts to build the station were sabotaged and destroyed. The
fourth one disappeared without a trace 24 hours after becoming operational.
No one knows what happened to it.

And *that*...is only the beginning of our story.

jms

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