|Time period:||2785 - 3081|
|Controlled systems:||ca. 9|
|Secret Service:||FIC|
The Circinus Federation is a minor Periphery power located anti-spinward of the Lyran Commonwealth/Free Worlds League border, ~450 light years anti-spinward of Terra, in a region of space known as "The March Worlds"
After being accused of contract violation against the Free Worlds League in 2770, the Black Warriors mercenary unit abandoned Marik space, narrowly escaping capture by the Free Worlds navy. Vowing eternal vengeance on House Marik for their outlawed status, the Black Warriors settled on the planet Circinus and joined the pirates already operating there. Colonel Zachariah Cirion, leader of the Black Warriors, began to support his people through a series of sneak attacks against outlying Marik agricultural worlds. Both the Star League and the Marik House forces had their hands full with the Amaris Crisis, and so the Circinus pirates flourished in the absence of reprisals. In 2785, a small convoy of settlers fleeing the destruction in the Lyran Commonwealth landed on the planet to make a new start. Warrior and farmer combined their forces to establish a viable economy and culture.
The Lyran farmers apparently were never fully aware of the nature of their new allies. The pirates were involved in what remained "covert operations," but the farmers asked no questions as long as their allies provided the tools and consumer goods the farmers needed. The pirates, for their part, welcomed the farmers for two reasons. First, they provided stability and the possibility of internal law and order (without the brutal punishments and intimidation that mark pirate societies elsewhere), that would keep the band of cutthroats from turning on one another. Second, they helped the pirates present the illusion of a respectable, agrarian society to the neighboring worlds who were their victims.
Despite the fact that the Free Worlds military occupied Circinus during a lull in the Second Succession War, it is still the most successful of the Bandit Kingdoms, having long since adopted a presidential system of government. Piracy is a major governmental function, with covert "agencies" responsible both for the raids themselves and for covering them up. Lyran pundits often note that the Circinian president's chief duty is to look the other way so that he will not have to acknowledge the crimes his government is constantly committing.
Between the years of 2990 and 3020, the combined farmer/pirate alliance settled eight other worlds around the planet of Circinus. The then-president, C.J. McIntyre, signed a series of reconciliation treaties with the governments of both the Lyran Commonwealth and the Free Worlds League. The President conducted these treaties with some skill, as he managed to play off of the mutual suspicion between the two powers to help avoid their taking over of his Federation.
In 3032, the longtime president, C.J. McIntyre, died of heart failure, leaving his son, H.R. "Little Bob" McIntyre as the new president of Circinus. The new president swore to continue his father’s dream of a Circinan empire, and immediately began plans to invade the Illyrian Palatinate. Within the space of a few weeks, Circinan leaders had completed a battle strategy and the few Circinan factories began to churn out war material and supplies for the invasion forces.
However, just days before the campaign was supposed to commence, the commander of the elite Black Warriors military division, Adam Cirion, died in a tavern brawl on the planet Circinus. Due to the lack of a clear line of succession, President McIntyre assumed personal control of the Black Warriors unit. Although tradition dictated that the unit be led by a Cirion, Adam’s son Michael was considered too young and inexperienced to lead the military during the invasion. Due to a longstanding agreement between the two branches of the "government" not to interfere in the other’s sphere of influence, McIntyre's assumption of control was met with great suspicion and hostility from the Black Warriors, who correctly saw that the new President had little BattleMech experience and was a poor strategist. To placate the opposition, the President announced that the planned invasion of the Palatinate was put on hold for one year so that he could train with the Black Warriors to improve his 'Mech skills. (In addition, there was intelligence gathered in early 3033 that suggested the Palatinate's defenses were much stronger than the Federation realized.
During the one year hiatus, McIntyre embarked on a plan to consolidate his support amongst the Circinan military and minimize any opposition to his command of the Black Warriors. His efforts proved to be largely unsuccessful, as many of the Black Warriors were disgusted by McIntyre’s assumption of power and his ineptitude at keeping the "covert operations" embarked on by the military as covert. These enemies of McIntyre rallied around the young Michael Cirion as a figurehead. Because of the man’s surname, McIntyre could do nothing but watch as he slowly gained popularity.
In 3034, the Federation finally embarked on their promised campaign of conquest of the Palatinate. McIntyre promised his citizens that a victory would be quick and easily forthcoming, and that said victory would give his small nation enough prestige to escape any Inner Sphere conquest.
However, he was proven sorely wrong. The Federation's nascent intelligence service was unable to detect the preparations that the Illyrian leadership had undertaken during the long delay in the invasion timetable. Due to that, the invading Circinan forces were surprised when they encountered seasoned mercenary units defending the Palatinate's worlds. The Circinan forces were badly bloodied, and McIntyre ordered a full retreat to cut his losses and save his military. Because he was fearful of the popular dissent that such a failure would breed, he ordered his remaining forces to invade the planet of Dersidatz.
Dersidatz was an agricultural planet that had escaped any invasion due to the planet's insignificance. However, by invading it in the wake of the failed Illyrian offensive, McIntyre succeeded in his goal of improving his popularity and silencing dissenters.
After the failure of the Illyrian offensive, President McIntyre returned to the Federation and attempted to rebuild his military for a renewed offensive against the Palatinate in 3036. However, this attempt was thwarted by an uprising on the newly-conquered planet of Dersidatz that destroyed the garrison forces on planet and overthrew the Federation government. McIntyre ordered a re-invasion of the planet, but quickly rescinded the order amid reports of a troop buildup on the Marik-Steiner common border. He instead deployed all available troops to the border to await the supposedly oncoming offensive. However, when said offensive did not materialize in a few months, President McIntyre stood down the alert and returned his attention to Dersidatz.
When his forces re-invaded the planet, they found that the rebels had prepared substantial defenses on their world that drastically slowed down the Black Warriors down and reduced the fighting to that of a guerilla war, in which the Black Warriors were forced to pursue small bands of rebels all around the planet. This wore down the Warriors and seeded more dissent within the ranks of the military, who hated McIntyre's refusal to retreat from the planet.
Although most of the Dersidatz rebels were subdued by 3040, the Federation had many other problems to deal with. In 3041, a group of Black Warriors, secretly backed by Michael Cirion, attempted to seize power in a coup d'etat. Although forces loyal to McIntyre prevailed in the end, over two-thirds of the Circinan military was destroyed in the fighting. The Federation also suffered other losses when one Captain Hopper Morrison stumbled onto a Star League era cache of weapons in 3042, and deserted the Federation military completely to form a pirate company known as Morrison's Extractors. These events left the Federation weak and demoralized for the near future.
When the Word of Blake Jihad broke out in 3067, the Circinus Federation sensed a golden opportunity, and sided with the Blakists against the Inner Sphere. This was beneficial at first, but the Federation was eventually destroyed along with the Blakists by the Marian Hegemony and the victorious Inner Sphere forces.
The Black Warriors currently serve as the entire Circinan military. Never a truly unified force, the Black Warriors constantly test the loyalties of the various factions within their ranks. The largest faction, led by Major Fritz Donner, consists of units loyal to President McIntyre. A second faction of near-equal strength, however, supports company commander Michael Cirion, heir to the Black Warriors' command. Because of the fierce rivalry of these two factions, most of the mercenaries employed in the Circinan military studiously avoid taking sides.
Circinian military leaders have never made any real effort to regulate or standardize uniforms, so each Circinian military unit has its own uniform. This system was established when the Black Warriors began attracting other units to join them, under the belief that unique uniforms help each unit maintain a strong sense of individuality and morale. Detractors of the practice criticize it as yet another source of division between military units in the Federation. However, Circinian military leaders require that all unit uniforms include the emblem of the Federation and that all military personnel wear the emblem somewhere above the waist. Although all Federation units use the same progression of rank, rank insignia varies widely among units.
Ranks: Enlisted Personnel
Because the regular (non-mercenary) Circinan military consists solely of the Black Warriors, who are an all-'Mech unit, there are few enlisted personnel serving in the military, and those that do act solely in a support position. The ranks are as follows:
Private: This rank is given to all enlistees in the Black Warriors. From the rank, there are two promotion opportunities. Those who display some level of competence at piloting a BattleMech are bumped up to the rank of MechWarrior, while those who pursue a career in the support positions face a long and arduous road of promotion.
Corporal: A Circinan corporal, unlike most other conventional militaries, acts as a department head in the technical support position and supervises a whole team of techs in a company or a department on board a ship. Few privates advance to this rank.
Sergeant: Advancement to this rank is incredibly rare, and is only initiated by many years of loyal service to the Circinan military. A sergeant oversees the technical activities of all support personnel in a battalion or on board a ship. Once the rank is conferred upon a person, it is held until death or retirement
MechWarrior: Although considered an officer in terms of pay scale and benefits, they have no command over the enlisted ranks.
Lieutenant: A lieutenant either commands a lance of BattleMechs or acts as the executive officer on board a ship.
Captain: Captains are the most important officers in the Black Warriors, as a company (commanded by a captain) is the main unit deployed by the Warriors. This means that each captain is given a large degree of latitude on the battlefield and is expected to operate independent of higher command authority. In the small Circinus navy, captains command DropShips as well as JumpShips.
Major: A major commands a battalion of Black Warriors.
Colonel: Each colonel commands a full regiment of Black Warriors. Although there were originally three colonels in the Black Warriors commanding three regiments, the Illyrian campaign whittled this number down to one regiment. The post of colonel is currently occupied by the Circinus Federation president, H.R. McIntyre.
ComStar and Word of Blake:
Although the Federation maintained good relationships with ComStar, the Word of Blake schism divided the loyalties of the few ComStar personnel in the Federation. In the end, the Word of Blake won control of the HPG station found in the Federation, and became responsible for all interstellar communications.
Relations with the Lyran Alliance remain strained, largely due to the long history of Circinan raids against Lyran worlds. Recent raids against Alliance territory have further strained the already-fragile relations, and have necessitated a closer watch for any potential troop movements within the Alliance.
Free Worlds League:
The Federation maintains no diplomatic relations with the Free Worlds League. A history of Circinian raids against Marik worlds and Marik occupation of the Federation have left the populations and governments of both realms suspicious of one another. In recent years, the Free Worlds League has attempted to improve relations by providing economic assistance to several impoverished Circinian worlds, but these programs have done little to alter the deep-seated Circinian hostility toward the Free Worlds League.
The Circinus Federation's relations with its Periphery neighbors are mixed. The Illyrian Palatinate, before its absorption into the Marian Hegemony, maintained no relations with the Federation and forbade any citizens of its realm from trading with Federation merchants. Circinan relations with the Marian Hegemony, however, have improved in recent months, especially after their conquest of the Palatinate, and trade ties between the two realms are beginning to form. However, many observers speculate that the Federation's friendly overtures toward the Hegemony result entirely from the strategic implications of the Hegemony's conquest of the Lothian League and the Palatinate. Circinian relations with the Rim Collection remain strained, due to President McIntyre's reluctance to deal with the still-unstable government of the recently founded state. McIntyre's reluctance to deal with the Collection, however, has not prevented Collection merchants from establishing profitable trade arrangements with their Circinian counterparts, which in the future may lead to a better relationship between the two nations.
Circinus Federation MechWarrior Portrait
Historical Map Gallery
- Commerce Is All
- Field Manual: Periphery p.102 - Circinus Federation