Amaris Civil War
The Amaris Civil War (also referred to as the Amaris Crisis, the Amaris-Kerensky Civil War, the Star League Civil War, and the Amaris Coup) was the series of events that led to the dissolution of the Star League. The Civil War, fought in both the Periphery and the Terran Hegemony, occurred between (December 26th 2766 and 2780). The Amaris Civil War also resulted in the destruction of the Rim Worlds Republic, and Operation Exodus, the departure of Aleksandr Kerensky and three-quarters of the surviving SLDF from the Inner Sphere.
The chain of events leading to Stefan Amaris's destruction of both the Star League and the Rim Worlds Republic began in 2751. Then First Lord, the fair and just Simon Cameron, died in February as he toured a mining complex on New Silesia. This left 8-year old Richard Cameron as First Lord, ruler of the entire Human Sphere. Aleksandr Kerensky was named Protector and Regent of the Star League, but Stefan Amaris quickly penetrated the Terran Courts. The young Richard became paranoid and megalomaniacal under the tutelage of the Terran courtiers, including Stefan.
By 2762, when Richard came of age, Stefan Amaris was already a close confidant. Richard began his reign by ordering all house armies disbanded, and forced to join the SLDF, with the issuance of Executive Order 156. When the Great House Lords refused, Richard was forced to accept the refusal, but disbanded the Star League High Council, ruling the Human Sphere unilaterally. Richard then issued the Taxation Edict of 2763, a steep increase in taxes throughout the Human Sphere, but especially upon the Periphery. As the tax increase was a clear infraction on the Reunification Treaties, the Periphery governments quickly became militarized, and prepared for another Inner Sphere invasion.
The resulting New Vandenberg Uprising, started by the secession of 18 worlds within the Taurian Concordat in 2765, forced the SLDF and Aleksandr Kerensky to redeploy a significant number of units to fight in the Periphery. By July 2765, over sixty percent of the units normally stationed within the Terran Hegemony had been relocated to other districts, leaving the heart of the Star League dangerously exposed. It was at this point that the First Lord revealed his secret treaty with Amaris, allowing for the deployment of Rim Worlds Republic Military units to take their place. Anger at this use of foreign troops was only placated by the Republic's continued fervent loyalty to the Star League, and Republican forces were allowed onto Hegemony worlds. However, the number of Republican units was secretly growing daily, with twice as many regiments arriving as officially listed, and under Richard's orders they were given complete access to the SLDF bureaucracy, gaining control of more than half of the realm's Castles Brian and allowed to learn the workings of the Space Defense System. By December 2766, more than half of the Republican military had been redeployed to the Hegemony, equivalent to 16 divisions and twice as large as the remaining SLDF forces. With the pieces in place, Stefan Amaris was ready to act.
On December 27, Stefan Amaris had a nine o'clock appointment with the First Lord in his private Audience Chamber within his palace in Unity City. Amaris was allowed through the palace's security systems, accompanied by four bodyguards, unchallenged. He found the First Lord eagerly awaiting his arrival, and after exchanging pleasantries presented Richard with a wrapped box. After tearing through several layers of wrapped boxes, Richard finally uncovered a jewel-encrusted laser pistol bearing the crest of the Amaris family. Stefan held the pistol up to the light to reflect off the jewels, then leveled it at Richard's forehead and pulled the trigger.
Immediately he seized control of the automated security systems with the palace, using the control panel within the Audience Chamber which Richard himself had proudly shown Stefan how to operate. However, Stefan was unaware of the full extent of the security system, which had picked up the laser blast and immediately warned the palace guards and Richard's personal regiment the Royal Black Watch. The palace guards attempting to enter the Audience Chamber through the hallways found themselves cut down by hidden laser systems, while the Black Watch suffered heavy losses in the traps set for them by the 4th Amaris Dragoons. Still, the coup was on the brink of failure: a platoon of jump pack-equipped guards, flying low across the palace's roofs to avoid anti-air laser turrets, were able to reach the roof of the Audience Chamber, and two lances of Black Watch 'Mechs were able to escape the traps and confronted the 4th Dragoons at Gorst Flats, protected on one side by high forested hills and Puget Sound on the other, which forced the Dragoons to confront them individually. Both efforts however were ultimately doomed. After losing ten 'Mechs to the entrenched Black Watch soldiers, all of whom had been graduates of the infamous Gunslinger Program, the Dragoon's commander withdrew his forces and wiped them out with a nuclear explosive. He also sent reinforcements to the palace, and the Republican infantry arrived in time to confront the palace guards and defeat them moments before they had finally cut through the Audience Chamber roof.
All across the Hegemony, similar dramas played out as the Republicans used surprise to wipe out Regular Army units, many before they could get out of their barracks or troop ships, especially through the use of chemical and nuclear weapons of mass destruction. A number of units were able to escape the initial onslaught, including elements of the 191st Royal BattleMech Division located on Terra, and proceeded to wage a guerrilla war against Amaris that lasted for years. At least five regiments were able to hold out within their Castles Brian against several Republican assaults until their destruction by repeated nuclear bombardment. Most units however, if not entirely destroyed, were so badly mauled in that opening day that they effectively ceased to exist or took heed of the ultimatum that Amaris broadcast, falsely declaring he would kill the First Lord if they did not surrender. Those who laid down their arms were forced to dig their own graves and summarily executed. By the end of the day, 95 of the Hegemony's 103 worlds were under Republican control, as well as many intact Castles Brian and Space Defense Systems.
Throne Room Massacre
Having secured the Terran Hegemony, Amaris turned his attention to one last perceived threat to his reign. Gathering all 79 surviving members of House Cameron within the Palace Throne Room, he gave them an ultimatum: swear allegiance to him or die. One by one the family members were brought before him, sitting upon the Star League Throne, and asked to submit. The first twenty refused and were returned to the rest of the group, but the twenty-first, Jason Cameron Bashina, agreed to bow to Amaris.
With a grim smile Amaris proceeded to murder Jason with the same laser pistol he had used on the First Lord. Realizing they would die either way, the rest of the family attempted to rush the throne, but were cut down by Amaris' guards. After the smoke from their charred bodies finally cleared, Amaris left the Throne Room and ordered it sealed. Across the Hegemony similar efforts were made to destroy any vestiges of the Camerons or the Star League to make way for the new Amaris Empire.
Stefan's first act was to order Aleksandr Kerensky to maintain operations (against the Taurian Concordat), which Kerensky refused. Both sides then requested aid, which was flatly refused by each Territorial State and each Inner Sphere State. Thus started the Amaris Civil War (2766 - 2780). Though the SLDF was the most powerful fighting force in the Human Sphere, it faced a gigantic Republican war machine, numbering more than 100 regiments of BattleMechs alone.
Kerensky began his operations by conquering the Rim Worlds Republic, led by Stefan's regent, the patriotic Mohammed Selim, an unambitious administrator Stefan could trust. The SLDF took Terra Prime by 2769. Upon completion of military operations within the Rim Worlds Republic, the SLDF took a couple of years to prepare, then Kerensky began the Operation CHIEFTAN in 2772 to begin the realm's liberation. The SLDF invaded Terra in 2777, and by 2779, the outcome of the battle and the war was a foregone conclusion. On 30 September, 2779, Stefan Amaris was taken captive by the SLDF after Aleksandr Kerensky himself personally knocked down the palace doors in Unity City in his Orion BattleMech.
Stefan and his accomplices were held humanely until enough evidence was found to confirm Stefan's atrocities. Stefan Amaris was executed by firing squad; the order came from Aleksandr Kerensky himself. After the execution of Stefan, a long campaign was conducted, both officially and through vigilanteism, to end the Amaris/Wong/Siever lines - anyone with a claim to the Amaris throne was executed or lynched.
Despite the end of House Amaris, the Rim World Republic might have endured. However, the loss of the core of the Republic to annexation by the Lyran Commonwealth, as well as the power vacuum left by the death of the Amaris family and the Rim Worlds Republic Military, meant the remaining independent worlds, literally more than 24 systems, were left to fend for themselves. Dozens of small bandit kingdoms arose in the vacuum of the collapse of the Republic, financed by privateering and de facto mercenary deals; the rest persisted as Periphery independents or disappeared.
In the wake of the death of the Cameron line, each Great House Lord coveted the possibility of becoming the next First Lord. General Aleksandr Kerensky was summarily stripped of the title "Protector" by the House Lords in 2780. By this time, Kerensky had had enough. As the House Lords bickered over succession, Kerensky made ready to depart the Inner Sphere. By his (sound) reasoning, the succession to the First Lord's throne was going to be a bloody affair, and he would not let humanity's defenders become pawns of the ambitions of petty jealousies. Most of the SLDF gathered at New Samarkand, and departed on 8 July, 2784. The descendants of the Star League Defense Force would not be discovered for ~260 years.
In the military power vacuum left by Kerensky's departure, the Star League High Council dissolved, and Coordinator Minoru Kurita unilaterally declared himself First Lord of the Star League. The announcement touched off the First Succession War and the decline of the known Human Sphere.
- The Star League, p. 79
- The Star League, p. 82
- The Star League, p. 83