FATE OF THE JEDI
“No Mandalorian soldier should have to fight an aruetii’s war for the price of a day’s food. No Mando’ad should have to fight at all, except to defend Manda’yaim, his home, or his family, or because he wants to. We have to stop being the tool of governments that don’t care if we live or die so long as we do their bidding.”
―Kad’ika, also known as Venku Skirata, addressing a gathering of clan leaders
In 738 BBY, following a significant growth in Mandalorian militancy that alarmed the Republic and its Jedi protectors, a brief and targeted conflict broke out between the Republic and the Mandalorians that brought devastation to the Mandalore sector. Portions of the planet Mandalore were reduced to barren white-sand deserts. While many of the warrior clans scattered, out of the ashes rose the New Mandalorian faction. Doing away with many of the old warrior codes the Mandalorians had historically followed, the New Mandalorians put forward the idea that the best opportunity for Mandalorian survival and prosperity would come through being peaceful, neutral, and tolerant. Clinging strongly to this belief in pacifism, nonviolence became a central tenet in their society.
When the Clone Wars had broken out between the Galactic Republic and the Confederacy of Independent Systems, the leader of the New Mandalorians, Duchess Satine Kryze, declared Mandalore neutral. Over a decade after the loss of their leader and their subsequent fragmentation at the end of the Mandalorian Civil War, it was into this environment that the Death Watch made a return to the galactic scene. Unlike the other clans who merely stood apart from the New Mandalorians, the Death Watch despised the peace-loving government the New Mandalorians had established, viewing it as weak, and Kryze as a disgrace to all Mandalorians for her pacifist views.
The New Mandalorian regime would come under attack when the Death Watch, under Pre Vizsla, allied with Darth Maul and a Shadow Collective made up of criminal syndicates, would stage a successful coup to dethrone Duchess Kryze. Pre Vizsla had Kryze imprisoned, and made himself the Prime Minister of Mandalore. Soon, however, he was killed in a duel with Maul, and Almec was freed from prison and reinstated to be a puppet ruler for Maul. Maul murdered Duchess Kryze. However, not long afterward Maul himself was defeated by his former master, Darth Sidious.
As the Republic made its transformation into the Galactic Empire and the Great Jedi Purge began, the newly-crowned Emperor Palpatine turned his sights on Mandalore. Appearing to forgive the Mandalorians for their actions during the Clone Wars, the Empire had begun offering mercenary work to the people and even offered a large sum of credits in order to lease land for the creation of an Imperial base with a garrison on the planet. Although there were those who believed any deal with the Empire to be a bad idea—such as Kal Skirata, who had gained a certain understanding of Palpatine’s manipulative capabilities during his time in service to the Republic’s Grand Army, and cited Palpatine’s carefully planned destruction of the Jedi as proof that “Palpatine never did anything temporary in his life”—the Mandalorian clan leaders met and decided in favor of leasing the land to the Empire. However, as Imperial forces began to arrive, the post of Mand’alor that had been vacant since Spar stepped down, was reluctantly assumed by Fenn Shysa. Shysa had been a favorite among the Mandalorian people for becoming the next Mand’alor, but it was his negative feelings toward the Empire that influenced his decision: Shysa had been against allowing the Imperial garrison, but felt that should the clans turn the Empire’s offer down, they would lose much-needed credits and the Empire might well have come to Mandalore anyway, under much less friendly circumstances.
As the Empire slowly consolidated its holdings on Mandalore, Shysa began to covertly assemble a resistance force to “respond in kind” should the Imperial presence turn hostile. Shysa’s fears were realized as the Empire’s foothold on Mandalore became an iron grip; the Imperials began to strip-mine the planet’s beskar deposits, and enslaved large portions of the Mandalorian population to do the work. Shysa’s resistance—a reborn sect of Mandalorian Protectors—fought against the Imperial occupation for close to twenty years, drawing the ire of the Empire. The Shimholt known as the Suprema, had replaced the Imperial commander from Kemla, and under his leadership, the Empire’s grip on Mandalore only tightened. Mandalore was finally able to throw off the Empire’s yoke with help from the Rebel Alliance just after the destruction of the second Death Star on Endor and the death of Palpatine.
UPCOMING ISSUE: Mandalorian Ambition
FACE: Takar Markatta
ASPECT: A Powder Keg Ready to Blow
Finally free of the Empire Mandalorians began a new era of conquest liberating many systems from Imperial control. For many this was a relief as Imperial rule had been oppressive and corrupt. The new Mandalorian Supremacy treated all within its borders as equals and successfully imparted its warrior philosophy to its new subjects. Tensions with the Imperials continue and there are many skirmishes and covert actions between the two.
The newly christened Mandalore, Melkar Jendri, has called for expansion and conquest and his rhetoric does not seem limited to defeating the Empire. Relations with the New Republic have soured since he gained power and in reaction the Republic Navy has built up its forces on the Mandalorian border. Melkar has recently severed diplomatic ties with the Republic expelling their ambassador from the embassy. Many fear that war is inevitable with the current regime although there is hope that some of the rival Mandalorian clans, particularly Clan Markatta, will oppose Clan Jendri and Melkar’s ambitions. To that end covert connections have been established with Takar Markatta in the hopes that war can be averted.