Wednesday, November 16, 2016

The Amaris Coup (Part I)

The Amaris Coup, The Amaris Civil War, or any of a dozen different potential names all describe one of the most singularly destructive events in the history of the Battletech Universe.  Hundreds of worlds were scarred by the war, and billions upon billions of lives were lost in the conflict.  The Star League tore itself apart trying to unseat a despot who’d claimed the throne with violence and a willingness to use any means necessary to accomplish his goal of destroying the Cameron family and taking what was theirs.  Today we’re going to take a look at some of the build up to the Coup itself, and as we move forward we’ll dive into the conflict itself.

After the death of Simon Cameron in 2751, Richard Cameron was too young to assume the authority of First Lord, and Commanding General of the SLDF Aleksandr Kerensky was appointed regent.  Tensions rising in the Periphery drew the Regent away from Terra for much of the Regency, and Richard Cameron grew from a willful...spoiled child into a tyrant in the making.  Isolated by being the eldest of the Cameron children (he had sisters) Richard Cameron had a single ally in the court, Stefan Amaris.

Amaris, and by extension his Rimworlds Republic, ingratiated and insinuated themselves into the Star League as allies of House Cameron, and in many ways were among the few friends that young Cameron had within the court.  The Periphery realms were a powder keg of potential rebellion and military conflict that drew more and more SLDF units out of their traditional bases.  Every periphery nation suffered from rebel fighters and bandits, and the SLDF had to act.  

Amaris had set his plans very carefully, drawing more and more of the SLDF out of the former Hegemony worlds.  Through his close contact with the First Lord, he’d positioned the Rimworlds Republic as a close partner to House Cameron, and used the troops being funneled into the Periphery as an excuse to offer his troops to House Cameron.Further, Amaris used his resources to secretly construct regiments in secret to help the other realms in the war he was about to start.  

When the Periphery realms, boosted with the additional units from Amaris’s Hidden army, went into open rebellion, Kerensky acted quickly and decisively to put the rebellion down and restore peace and order.  The conflict blinded him to everything else that was going on around him.  He didn’t see the risk posed by Amaris until it was far too late.  

On December 26th, Amaris’s forces took control of the Star League and the former Hegemony worlds.  Using a combination of nuclear, chemical and biological agents, RWR forces took control of 135 of the 147 occupied human systems within the borders of the former Terran Hegemony.  The fighting was ugly, and atrocities and excesses were rampant among the RWR forces.  

Some of the bloodiest fighting occurred on Terra, where RWR forces squared off with SLDF on land and in space.  Striking with surprise, and with planted explosives and weapons, the RWR forces gutted notable formations like the Royal Black Watch Regiment (the personal bodyguard of the First Lord) and attempted to take control of as many strategic points on Terra as possible.  Desperate firefights broke out across the world as surprised defenders tried to hold the planet.  

In space the fighting was heavy and the Star League fleet reaped a blood toll on the RWR naval assets in system.  Through desperation, a bit of luck, and hard training, the SLN fleet managed to extract some parts of the SLDF high command from the surface below.  The remainder of the fleet and all loyal elements of the SLDF that were captured were executed by RWR forces.  Resistance groups sprang up across the planet, but Terra, and the majority of the Terran Hegemony was under the control of Stefan Amaris.  Darker times would lay ahead

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