Defecting to the Kilrathi

NinjaLA

Alex Von T.
who says anything about losing the will to fight? quite the contrary... the fact that they are so weak by the time of prophecy that they need help from midway pilots indicates that instead of continuing a futile fight with humans with their forces so severely hurt, they instead turned on eachother to vie for rulership of the empire. Its not known who or if there is a new kilrathi emperor. Malek certainly was a good candidate for taking advantage of his position to become the next emperor. My guess is that they went back to the old methods kilrathi warlord versus kilrathi warlord for prestige.
 

Aplha 1-1

Spaceman
Correct NinjaLA. Read False Colours, set after the fall of thier empire.
The main opponent the FRLN pilots had to face (Ragark?) had a functional Dreadnaught that we wouldn't just use against humans, but other Kilrathi. Several clans refused to follow Meleks rule (Nar Caxki mostly, IIRC) and there was a fair amount of political infighting.
 

Thunderbolt

Rear Admiral
who says anything about losing the will to fight? quite the contrary... the fact that they are so weak by the time of prophecy that they need help from midway pilots indicates that instead of continuing a futile fight with humans with their forces so severely hurt, they instead turned on eachother to vie for rulership of the empire. Its not known who or if there is a new kilrathi emperor. Malek certainly was a good candidate for taking advantage of his position to become the next emperor. My guess is that they went back to the old methods kilrathi warlord versus kilrathi warlord for prestige.

I also agree. Remember that the kilrathi Empire was divided up into a number of clans which were more than prone to infighting. Only a strong royal family could control the warring clans. There were even assination attempts on Thrakkath's life during the war. With the Emperor and royal family killed in WC3 the Empire effectively broke apart. Think about recent examples of this happening right as we speak. From a military point of view whilst the confederation and kilrathi forward fleets virtually annihilated each other in Freya/hyperion the destruction of Kilrah destoyed many Kilrathi ship yards and almost the entire grand amada preparing to invade Earth. Whilst the Confederation still had its reserve fleet operational which could have more than easily dealt with the remaining Kilrathi navy if they needed to.
Melek also says to Blair in WC4 that he surrended all of his warships to the confederation and had very limited means of protecting the Kilrathi loyal to him. So any remaining kilrathi that would try to oppose the Confederation and Border Worlds would likely to be pirates and raiders and not part of a highly organised military.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Well that still seems very hypocritical for the kilrathi to beg for peace without losing respect for themselves and there own effort.
Actually, the false peace wasn't in the least bit hypocritica from their point of view, or even from ours. The Kilrathi did what hunters have always done - they set a trap. The humans walked into the trap. The Kilrathi didn't think it was dishonourable as such for humans to accept peace - they didn't think of it in terms of honour at all, but in terms of intelligence and cunning. The humans, whom they've come to respect, all of a sudden showed that they were as stupid as any other prey species - so clearly, prey species is all they were.

If you still have doubts about whether the Kilrathi were hypocritical, think of it as a chess game - is a chess player dishonourable because he sets up a trap for his opponent? And if the trap is an obvious one, doesn't it make sense that he'll think less of his opponent for falling for it?

You are right, however, that the Kilrathi would not have respected humans for doing that - and there's no hypocrisy involved here, either. Again, go back to the chess example. Like I said, the trap is an obvious one. The chess player that sets it will think less of his opponent for falling for it... but since the trap is so obvious, his opponent, if he sees through it, will think less of the player that set it, and indeed will feel downright insulted that the player thinks so poorly of his own intelligence.

So I still think thats a funny ideology for the kilrathi to have. The Kilrathi IMO were no more honourable than humans as there is a differance between a warrior and a killer and the kilrathi seemed to have a lot of difficulty finding that distinction.
I don't think the Kilrathi quite looked at it that way... from the point of view of their own belief system, presumably the Kilrathi were automatically more honourable than humans, for much the same reason that we humans regard even the most dastardly member of our species as being more honourable than a tiger - because the tiger doesn't understand the concept of honour, and while his behaviour can at times be regarded as honourable, it's not because he's trying to be honourable.

Bear in mind, however, that not everything the Kilrathi do is honourable by their own standards. We've seen the Kilrathi breaking their own code of honour as often as humans breaking theirs. And that's what Melek was referring to at the end of WC3 - that the Kilrathi need to change, because over the course of the war, they had indeed ceased to differentiate between a warrior and a killer.
 

Thunderbolt

Rear Admiral
Actually, the false peace wasn't in the least bit hypocritica from their point of view, or even from ours. The Kilrathi did what hunters have always done - they set a trap. The humans walked into the trap. The Kilrathi didn't think it was dishonourable as such for humans to accept peace - they didn't think of it in terms of honour at all, but in terms of intelligence and cunning. The humans, whom they've come to respect, all of a sudden showed that they were as stupid as any other prey species - so clearly, prey species is all they were.
Well that is a point that seems valid. In any fight to the death there are no rules it comes down to survival and therefore a "do what is neccessary" to win. I guess it is worth bearing in mind that the Kilrathi were fighting a total war with their entire culture, economy and life geared up for war. Therefore I guess they were prepared to do whatever was necessary to win. Although the kilrathi forced the confederation to do the same and develop there own doomsday devices like the behemoth and temblor bomb.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Well that is a point that seems valid. In any fight to the death there are no rules it comes down to survival and therefore a "do what is neccessary" to win. I guess it is worth bearing in mind that the Kilrathi were fighting a total war with their entire culture, economy and life geared up for war. Therefore I guess they were prepared to do whatever was necessary to win. Although the kilrathi forced the confederation to do the same and develop there own doomsday devices like the behemoth and temblor bomb.
No, look, it really wasn't anything like that. It wasn't a desperate "whatever is necessary to win" thing. It was a perfectly legitimate ruse. Even according to our human rules of war, deceit of all kinds is restricted, but not illegal in war. For example, we have internationally-agreed rules to determine under what circumstances a ship is permitted to sail under false colours - but we do not have internationally-agreed rules outlawing such thing altogether, and nobody would ever dream of it. Even at the start of the 20th century, when combat was far more honourable than today (albeit far less honourable than in medieval times), British admirals complained that submarines are nasty, deceitful and damned un-British... but they were perfectly willing to accept the idea of camouflaging your ship as an enemy vessel, provided you followed certain rules.

Of course, the way they re-started the war was definitely despicable - the proper way would have been to declare war, rather than merely blow up the joint chiefs of staff. However, this would only make sense if the Kilrathi were facing a legitimate opponent - but in their view, the acceptance of the truce proved they were facing a pack of particularly troublesome animals. And of course, not even the British require you to declare war when you go out hunting :p.
 

Thunderbolt

Rear Admiral
No, look, it really wasn't anything like that. It wasn't a desperate "whatever is necessary to win" thing. It was a perfectly legitimate ruse. Even according to our human rules of war, deceit of all kinds is restricted, but not illegal in war. For example, we have internationally-agreed rules to determine under what circumstances a ship is permitted to sail under false colours - but we do not have internationally-agreed rules outlawing such thing altogether, and nobody would ever dream of it. Even at the start of the 20th century, when combat was far more honourable than today (albeit far less honourable than in medieval times), British admirals complained that submarines are nasty, deceitful and damned un-British... but they were perfectly willing to accept the idea of camouflaging your ship as an enemy vessel, provided you followed certain rules.

Of course, the way they re-started the war was definitely despicable - the proper way would have been to declare war, rather than merely blow up the joint chiefs of staff. However, this would only make sense if the Kilrathi were facing a legitimate opponent - but in their view, the acceptance of the truce proved they were facing a pack of particularly troublesome animals. And of course, not even the British require you to declare war when you go out hunting :p.
Maybe theres some language barrier here I'm not sure but thats what I meant from my last post. That the Kilrathi would do whatever is neccessary to win and if that involves bioweapons, nuclear strikes, slave labour, assassinations and false truces then they would do it. No rules of engagement were ever formed during the war. Thats all my last point was. Although I'm not quite convinced that there was no desperation on behalf of the kilrathi. Wasnt it true that in 2668/9 they faced revolts from their clans and evidence was suggesting that other aliens would soon be at war with them. If that is true than the Kilrathi would have needed a quick (maybe not desperate but hasty) victory over the confederation so they could quickly consolidate their Empire and prepare to engage the next race of aliens. Otherwise they would have a war on two fronts and risk their dissatisfied clans revolting in a civil war. And that would be the end of the kilrathi empire.
 

Delance

Victory, you say?
More than simply betraying their nation, people working for the Kilrathi can be seen as someone betraying their own species. Why would someone do that? The Mandarins probably have a different notion of their objectives, and rationalize they are themselves as actually helping mankind survive via different means, as described on the WC2 intro. However, it's not impossible for someone to hate mankind to a degree they would help some other race trying to destroy it, but it seems most of the traitors we see have a different agenda on their minds. Are the Mandarins big on misanthropy? Jazz seem to be having fun by preferably spilling human blood. Betraying Confed to work for the Kilrathi sounds a lot worse than, say, human pirates. Lots of different people worked for the Kilrathi, and the common denominator is that it turned out bad for them.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
More than simply betraying their nation, people working for the Kilrathi can be seen as someone betraying their own species. Why would someone do that?
As a sidenote, I find it hard to believe anybody would ever think in terms of species - though your comment is accurate, in so far as people in WC apparently do (like Blair's comments in WC4 about never expecting to fight his own species... though he had in the past). I guess it's just a hard thing for me to imagine, since, living in the alien-less 20/21st century, I'm kinda missing the whole "there's another race out there, and they want to kill not just our nation, but our entire species" context :p.

Anyway, it's pretty clear the Mandarins don't regard it as betraying their own species, though it's not clear if they were just opportunists who wanted to get on top of the slave hierarchy after Confed's inevitably (in their eyes) defeat, or if they genuinely believed they could eventually "civilise" the Kilrathi.

(an interesting thing is that the Mandarins were correct in their belief about being able to "civilise" the Kilrathi - though they might not have known it. After all, that's exactly what happened to Jukaga, and it could have eventually happened to other Kilrathi, too. The only question is, did the Mandarins actually have any evidence, any reason to believe this was possible? If they did, then we can say they had a point - but if they didn't, then they would have been merely delusional, even if they were ultimately proven correct)

Jazz seem to be having fun by preferably spilling human blood. Betraying Confed to work for the Kilrathi sounds a lot worse than, say, human pirates. Lots of different people worked for the Kilrathi, and the common denominator is that it turned out bad for them.
Well, Jazz is bent on revenge, after all - so yeah, he likes spilling blood of the people he believed responsible. But as for betraying Confed to work for the Kilrathi being worse than human pirates... I'd disagree. It can be worse (if you're actually doing it because you want to see humanity wiped out), but in most cases it would be just as bad (if your motivation was simply profit), or actually better (if your motivation was a genuine ideology, like if you seriously believed the Mandarins to be right). A traitor who at least believes he's doing the right thing is surely a less immoral figure than someone who does it just for his own profit? And remember, pirates were just as much traitors as anybody working for the Kilrathi - they were, after all, sabotaging the war effort.

Maybe theres some language barrier here I'm not sure but thats what I meant from my last post. That the Kilrathi would do whatever is neccessary to win and if that involves bioweapons, nuclear strikes, slave labour, assassinations and false truces then they would do it. No rules of engagement were ever formed during the war. Thats all my last point was. Although I'm not quite convinced that there was no desperation on behalf of the kilrathi.
Right. My last post didn't quite get across what I meant either, come to think of it. I wasn't suggesting that the Kilrathi weren't in the mood to do whatever it takes to win, and rules be damned - just that the false peace, although it was suggested in a situation where the Empire desperately needed to find a solution, wasn't such a desperate measure.

(though the Kilrathi clan leaders were still very offended when Jukaga proposed this plan, and the Emperor did suggest their Gods wouldn't like it. Nonetheless, Jukaga offered this plan as alternative to a retreat, an option he rejected out of hand as something too dishonourable to consider - which is why I believe the Kilrathi don't regard the false peace as something dishonourable to them, because they would have otherwise rejected it like the retreat option)

In any case, you are correct - the Kilrathi were increasingly desperate in the last years of the war. Even after the false peace and the battle of Terra, when it seemed like the Confederation was on the verge of defeat, the Kilrathi were still very desperate - in the WC3 novel, the Emperor goes as far as to say that the Empire cannot sustain the war for another year (and since this conversation appears to be the first time they meet after the battle of Terra, it seems that this year is almost up by the time WC3 ends), that there had been two assassination plots already since the battle, and that the clans were on the verge of rebellion - another defeat, and they'd be overthrown.

In the same conversation, the Emperor even orders Thrakhath to use the "new weapon" on the Terrans, which Thrakhath protests against, saying it's not the Kilrathi way. So, they are definitely in a situation where they're forced to do things the Kilrathi would normally reject as dishonourable.

...The only thing I can't figure out is what on earth the Emperor could possibly be referring to. I mean, the book author presumably meant bioweapons... but he seemed to have forgotten that this was nothing new to the Kilrathi, and hardly any different to using those strontium weapons that would poison the entire planet.
 

Death

gh0d (Administrator)
Quarto said:
[A]n interesting thing is that the Mandarins were correct in their belief about being able to "civilise" the Kilrathi - though they might not have known it. After all, that's exactly what happened to Jukaga, and it could have eventually happened to other Kilrathi, too.
On the other hand, how willing were other Kilrathi to view humans as other than an opponent or prey? As you noted, yourself, the kats weren't exactly inclined towards viewing things Jugaka's way. Thrakhath sure as hell wasn't, per Fleet Action.
 

Pulmonox

Commodore
Though I'm backing up a bit in this topic, it has always been a puzzle to me as to what Jazz's intentions were in defecting. Some here have touched upon it, but my question remains. While it is true that he lost family on the destroyed colony of Goddard, it leaves me flabbergasted that instead of becoming ever more angry at the beings directly responsible for the death of his family, he chooses instead to work WITH them to betray his fellow humans and the Tiger's Claw who were merely late to the rescue and even then, it was unsure if such a fate could have been averted anyway. Anyone have any thoughts on this?
 

Thunderbolt

Rear Admiral
In any case, you are correct - the Kilrathi were increasingly desperate in the last years of the war. Even after the false peace and the battle of Terra, when it seemed like the Confederation was on the verge of defeat, the Kilrathi were still very desperate - in the WC3 novel, the Emperor goes as far as to say that the Empire cannot sustain the war for another year (and since this conversation appears to be the first time they meet after the battle of Terra, it seems that this year is almost up by the time WC3 ends), that there had been two assassination plots already since the battle, and that the clans were on the verge of rebellion - another defeat, and they'd be overthrown.
What I want to know though is. If the Kilrathi were unable to sustain the war much longer and expended most of their resources in the battle of Earth and building those supercarriers, how did they construct about 20 Bhantkara fleet carries, 3 of those monstrous H'varkann dreadnoughts plus enormous numbers of cruisers, destroyers and corvettes within 3 months. Not just that but they came out with those dreaded Sorthaks, Vaktoths and Paktahn fighters which were either on par or outperformed their confederation counterparts (for the first time). And then have the logistics, pilots and crews to launch a full scale offensive into the Vega Sector and push the confederation back into systmes like Blackmane and Tamayo which were deep within confederation territory.

If they had those capabilities why were they so desperate. Their military machine was almost unstoppable. The confederation had no way near those ship building levels especially once all of the shipyards around Earth were destroyed. Maybe it was because they focused so much of there resources on the military that their civilians and clans lost morale and were losing interest in fighting? Perhaps thats the reason for hte Kilrathi needing a quick victory alhtough I'm not entirely sure.
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
On a side note, I was wondering why Roberts decided to make his Kilrathi furless in the movie.

What's the reasoning behind this major change?
One reason that the Kilrathi look furless in the Movie is that they're wearing more armor than we usually see them in. Their shoulders and arms are covered by a material that is similar in color to their skin, and most of them have form-fitting helmets. To diversify the crowd, some of them walk around with the helmet removed, and no fur was added to those heads. If we only saw the fully-suited Kilrathi, you'd only see their faces and would never know how much hair they had.



 
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Dran

Nothing is written here
I don't know my cat has fur on his face reguardless if I have him wearing a helmet or not
 

ELTEE

Rear Admiral
haha, so does mine! The cats in the movie seemed to have such restricted movement. They are always described as fit, fast, and strong warriors. The movie gives the impression that they are slow moving drones.
 

LeHah

212 Squadron - "The Old Man's Eyes And Ears"
I don't know my cat has fur on his face reguardless if I have him wearing a helmet or not
The Kilrathi are *not* cats though. They're an alien race that happens to have feline features, hence the slang terminology for them.
 

ELTEE

Rear Admiral
The Kilrathi are *not* cats though. They're an alien race that happens to have feline features, hence the slang terminology for them.

AHH, that explains it. And all this time I've been thinking I was actually fighting a race of deranged Tabby cats!! :D j/k
 

Dran

Nothing is written here
The Kilrathi are *not* cats though. They're an alien race that happens to have feline features, hence the slang terminology for them.

You are correct they are not "cats” however according to the description of the Kirathi in the wcnews encyclopedia the description reads as:

Physically, Kilrathi are around two meters in height and resemble Terran felines.
https://www.wcnews.com/encyclopedia/showrecord.php?id=1515

And wikipedia entry descries them as:
...bipeds who strongly resemble big cats: they have leonine manes
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kilrathi

From this I would derive they would have hair on their face just like my kitty at home. Though there are hairless cats in the world, most cats do have hair, and in all previous versions of WC games, the appearance was that of a giant Lion.
 
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Quarto

Unknown Enemy
On the other hand, how willing were other Kilrathi to view humans as other than an opponent or prey? As you noted, yourself, the kats weren't exactly inclined towards viewing things Jugaka's way. Thrakhath sure as hell wasn't, per Fleet Action.
Well, I said it was possible - not probable :p.

What I want to know though is. If the Kilrathi were unable to sustain the war much longer and expended most of their resources in the battle of Earth and building those supercarriers, how did they construct about 20 Bhantkara fleet carries, 3 of those monstrous H'varkann dreadnoughts plus enormous numbers of cruisers, destroyers and corvettes within 3 months. Not just that but they came out with those dreaded Sorthaks, Vaktoths and Paktahn fighters which were either on par or outperformed their confederation counterparts (for the first time). And then have the logistics, pilots and crews to launch a full scale offensive into the Vega Sector and push the confederation back into systmes like Blackmane and Tamayo which were deep within confederation territory.
Short answer - we have no idea.

We can make guesses, however. In particular, we can assume that a lot of these ships were being built already during the false peace. After all, if the Hakaga were - then other carriers could have been, too. I'm not sure where you get the 20 carriers from, however - at least, I don't remember such figures being given anywhere. Another thing is, those new fighters aren't necessarily new at all - we know most of Confed's "new" WC3 fighters eventually turned out to be much older than they seemed back in 1994. All in all, the only thing that's really unexplainable is those dreadnoughts. It makes no sense for them to have been built during the last year of the war.

One possibility that just occured to me now is that these dreadnoughts don't necessarily have to be new, either. For all we know, they could have existed for decades. The only catch is that they wouldn't have been jump-capable until after the Hakaga's jump drive was developed, since 22 km is obviously much bigger than the 1 km limit that had previously been in place for jumping ships. Still, it doesn't sound too crazy - given how Kilrah-centered their society is, it doesn't seem impossible that they would have built huge ships that would remain in the Kilrah system permanently for defence. Of course, the obvious flaw with that idea is that they weren't seen during End Run.

If they had those capabilities why were they so desperate. Their military machine was almost unstoppable. The confederation had no way near those ship building levels especially once all of the shipyards around Earth were destroyed. Maybe it was because they focused so much of there resources on the military that their civilians and clans lost morale and were losing interest in fighting? Perhaps thats the reason for hte Kilrathi needing a quick victory alhtough I'm not entirely sure.
Clan morale was definitely a factor, particularly since the Emperor in the WC3 novel seemed to be talking as much about their clan's power as he was about the Empire as a whole. Still, it was more than that - it is definitely implied that if they can't win soon, they simply won't have resources to keep fighting.
 
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