Duke George Hasek had walked something of a fine line throughout the entire Civil War. He publicly supported neither Victor nor Katherine Steiner-Davion, and instead put on an air of utter neutrality. He had but one concern—the welfare of the people of the Capellan March. Quite a few major units owed direct allegiance to him and obeyed his commands exclusively, while even those fighting for the Allied side within the Capellan March listened to what the duke had to say.
Privately, Duke Hasek felt the Archon was a despot who had lost any right to rule. Consequently, he did everything he felt he could get away with to hurt her Loyalist cause. He made extensive use of his subordinates to provide plausible deniability for orders like that which sent the Sixth Syrtis Fusiliers to tight on Kathil, while more overt moves, such as securing Talcott, he explained away by simply saying that he was keeping the lines of supply open to his Capellan March.
Throughout the first half of the war, the Archon's advisors and analysts were divided on what Hasek's motivations truly were—many believed that he was actually setting the stage for his own assumption of the throne (after the Steiner-Davion children, he has the strongest claim to the throne as the grandson of Hanse and Ian Davion's half-sister, Marie).
The Archon allowed the duke to play at his own games as he was actively pulling forces away from her brother's Allies. She also likely half-believed that she could manipulate the duke to her own devices down the road. That all changed at the Star League conference In November of 3064 when Duke Hasek informed Katherine in no uncertain terms that he would never support either she or her brother.
Angered by his audacity, the Archon ordered her generals to plan an assault on New Syrtis.
Originally, they planned to suborn the mercenary Vanguard Legion, stationed on New Syrtis alongside the New Syrtis CMM, the Davion Light Guards and the Eighth Syrtis Fusiliers, to give them a significant majority strength on the world. A task force consisting of the Eleventh Avalon Hussars, the Fourth Donegal Guards and the Ridgebrook CMM, and reinforced by the WarShip FCS Hanse Davion, entered the New Syrtis system on 27 October 3065. Four days later the Hanse Davion tangled with the FCS Covenant around the world itself, ending in the destruction of both WarShips, but clearing the way for the Loyalists to land. Before grounding, the Loyalists con tacted the mercenaries in an attempt to buy their services, an offer that was flatly refused by Colonel Chad Dean.
The first engagements were fought on 1 November, though Loyalist commandos had infiltrated the Duke's command center on the 31st of October and made an assassination attempt. While unsuccessful, the attempt did leave Duke Hasek in a coma, forcing Major General Deborah Palu to take charge of New Syrtis' defense.
By the time the Loyalists did land, HPG communications to and from the world had been disabled, preventing Hasek or his lieutenants from quickly calling for reinforcements. The first Loyalist targets on the world were supply dumps and command and control facilities, giving them the logistical backbone they needed to operate on the world. From their initial LZs, the Loyalists spread out across the world, hitting secondary targets throughout November.
With their duke in a coma, the world's defenders had lost much of their spirit, allowing is. until Duke George Hasek awoke on the 4th of December, retaking command of the world'
Reporter: General, isn't that just a military euphemism for 'you're going to invade the city to wipe out that AFFC unit and if the city is destroyed in the process, so be it?' Gen. Chapman: Lady, you just don't get it, do you? We're not murderers out on a killing spree for the sheer fun of it. We've been ordered to do a job and that's what we're going to do, within the limitations of the Ares Conventions and AFFS regulations. Reporter: Orders from who, Général? A deposed Prince looking to get the throne back? An officer facing hundreds of death penalty charges for crimes against the Federated Commonwealth?
Gen. Chapman: Just had to get that last shot in, huh? I'll tell you this, in the end, we're all going to stand trial, be it in front of the courts-martial or in front of bur maker. But the Ar... Reporter: So you admit that the charges of warcrimes against...
Gen. Chapman: ...The Archon's words and deeds have demanded that we stand up and take action. She and her allies cannot be allowed to remain in power. To let that happen would condemn the people of the Federated Suns to death—the death of their spirits through totalitarianism. In an attempt to legitimize her own actions, she has declared honorable men like Ardan Sortek damnable criminals. The men and women of the First FedSuns Armored Cav know this and so do the people of Radcliffe. Now we're going to end the threat that Katherine Steiner-Davion poses to this world through the Raiders once and for ?" That will mean that we're going to have to km some of the Raiders, and unfortunately they're going to kill some of my soldiers, too. But I'm willing to sacrifice everything if it means that the Federated Suns is freed from Katherine Steiner-Davion, and so are my men. Now you may not understand that, but there are plenty of people on Kathil who do. Try to spin this to your live audience any way you want, but the truth won't be bent to your agenda. Now Jim, get her the hell out of my CP!
- General Rudolph Chapman, live interview with Kathil Broadcast Authority, 8 October 3065
the Loyalists to make significant gains. That s defenses on the 11th. His troops regained
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