Second Alliance–Imperial War

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Second Alliance–Imperial War
()
Date: November 799 UC (1 NIC / 490 IC / 3599 CE) to 20 February 800 UC (2 NIC / 491 IC / 3600 CE)
Location: Milky Way Galaxy
Result: Imperial victory; the Free Planets Alliance is annexed by the Empire
Belligerents
Galactic EmpireFree Planets Alliance
Commanders / leaders
Reinhard I
Wolfgang Mittermeyer
Oskar von Reuenthal
Alexandre Bewcock
Chung Wu-Cheng
Ralph Carlson
Baunsgoal
Desch
Strength
100,000+ warships20,000 warships
Casualties / losses
Unknown~16,000 ships

The Second Alliance–Imperial War, also called the Second Ragnarök Operation (Japanese: 第2次ラグナロック作戦), was a brief conflict between the Free Planets Alliance and the Galactic Empire, which resulted in the final defeat and annexation of the Alliance. The war lasted from November 799 UC (1 NIC / 490 IC / 3599 CE) and ended on 20 February 800 UC (2 NIC / 491 IC / 3600 CE), beginning about five months after the conclusion of the first, much longer conflict. Although the two powers signed a peace treaty, when anti-Imperial elements rebelled against the Alliance government the postwar administration of Supreme Chairman João Rebelo was unable to control them. That, and the death of the Imperial consul on Heinessen, gave Kaiser Reinhard the reason to completely pacify the Alliance.

Contents

Background

See also: Alliance–Imperial War

Following the success of Operation Ragnarök in the spring of 799 UC (1 NIC / 490 IC / 3599 CE), in which the Imperial Fleet invaded the Alliance by using the Fezzan Corridor, the two countries signed an unequal peace treaty on May 25. The Treaty of Ba'alat left the Alliance as an autonomous region of the Galactic Empire, but allowed it to maintain its own government and had non-interference in domestic affairs as one of the key points of the agreement. Other terms included Alliance having to decommission a part of its navy and pay a security tax. Reinhard von Lohengramm, who was enthroned as the new emperor shortly after the war on June 20, did not intend to annex the Alliance right away. However, he did post Admiral Helmut Lennenkampf as his Imperial Consul on Heinessen, the Alliance capital, who acted as the new Kaiser's representative to the Alliance. João Rebelo, a former cabinet official and acquaintance of now retired Fleet Admiral Yang Wen-li, became the new Chairman of the Alliance High Council upon the resignation of Job Trunicht in the aftermath of the defeat. (LOGH: 'Long Live the Emperor!', 'After the Ceremony, the Curtain Rises Again...')

Lennenkampf affair

The increasing stress of office coupled with the anger of the people quickly proved too much for João Rebelo to bear, and his mental state became increasingly unstable as his time in office wore on: Rebelo forced himself to make hard, morally ambiguous decisions, believing that he had to do whatever necessary in order to preserve the autonomy of the Alliance. In late July 799, the theft of several Alliance Fleet warships that had been marked for decommissioning in accordance with the Treaty of Ba'alat by a resistance group led by Admiral Merkatz had occurred. Yang was under constant surveillance by both Imperial troops and Alliance Fleet Intelligence, as Consul Lennenkampf was paranoid about Yang and was looking for any excuse to arrest him. However, there were rumours that Merkatz had acted upon Yang's orders, and Lennenkampf largely believed them, deciding to arrest Yang Wen-li after a conversation with Paul von Oberstein. Oberstein believed that an uprising provoked by the arrest of Yang will give the Empire a reason to intervene and fully annex the Alliance. However, Rebelo came to the conclusion that if the government arrests and executes Yang first then there would be no legitimate casus belli for them to intervene. (LOGH: 'The Magician Is Captured')

Planning for the second Ragnarök (799 UC (1 NIC / 490 IC / 3599 CE))

Rebelo thus had Yang arrested and decided to use him as a scapegoat to prevent Imperial intervention, but this did not work as Yang's former subordinates, including the infamous Rosen Ritter regiment, rose up in rebellion. The military was unable to effectively contain them and they succeeded in freeing Yang before he could be executed, as well as capturing Rebelo as a hostage. Yang then got Rebelo's approval to let them capture Lennenkampf and take him hostage so that they can leave Heinessen. He agreed to go along with it as a means of preserving the Alliance. Lennenkampf was taken prisoner by the Rosen Ritter but ended up committing suicide in his cell before they could leave. The anti-Imperial insurgents had to pretend that the consul was still alive as they made their escape from the Alliance capital. (LOGH: 'Invitation to an Opera', 'Blood Running Down the Stairs: Cascade')

News of the incident reached the Empire and caused some initial confusion, and Kaiser Reinhard at first refused to take action before the full details of the situation were known. Meanwhile, on August 13, El Facil declared its independence from the Alliance as they claimed that it had strayed from the democratic ideals by becoming subservient to the Empire. Throughout the following month the revolutionary government of El Facil attempted to recruit Yang and his irregular forces, but the former fleet admiral hesitated to join them because he wanted to see how the Reich would respond to the situation. Finally, as the Imperial government became aware of what really transpired on Heinessen, Kaiser Reinhard held a couple of high-level staff meetings. During one such meeting on November 8, Reinhard decides to use this as a reason to unify the entire galaxy by invading the Alliance. (LOGH: 'Holiday's End', 'Against All Flags', 'Under the Golden Lion Flag')

The war

Early skirmishes

After announcing to the galaxy the circumstances of the events on Heinessen back in June, Reinhard and his admiralty worked out a plan for the "second Ragnarök" operation. It would involve several fleets moving in from Fezzan and converging on Heinessen. Meanwhile, Fleet Admiral Alexandre Bewcock was reinstated by the Rebelo administration as supreme commander of the fleet and made preparations to fight a "useless resistance." In the meantime, Imperial fleets advanced into Alliance space from Uruvasi and began taking out targets on the way. In December 799, an Imperial force destroyed a construction shipyard on the planetoid Lusiana, although some of the cruisers and destroyers worked on there were able to escape. Under the command of Commodore Desch they are able to disrupt Imperial supply lines and stall their advance somewhat. As this was happening, the El Facil Revolutionary Reserve Force, which was created when Yang Wen-li joined up with the new government there, departed from El Facil in late December to retake Iserlohn Fortress. (LOGH: 'Ragnarök Again', 'To El Facil', 'The Plan to Retake Iserlohn')

The Alliance government dispatched William Odets and a group of diplomats to try to convince the Kaiser to withdraw, citing the non-interference clause in the Ba'alat treaty, but to no avail. (LOGH: 'Ragnarök Again', 'To El Facil')

In early January 800 UC (2 NIC / 491 IC / 3600 CE), the El Facil fleet entered the Iserlohn Corridor and began its operation. They confused Admiral Cornelius Lutz, the fortress commander, by sending him conflicting orders to leave and join up with the rest of the fleet, and then to stay at his post. He decided that the order telling him to leave was the fake one and stayed. However, Lutz decided to leave the fortress and go away to lure the Yang fleet to Iserlohn, so then he could return and then trap them between his fleet and the Thor Hammer. Unbeknownst to them, Yang Wen-li had left behind a trap, allowing the El Facil rebels to take control of the fortress's internal systems and keep them from using the Thor Hammer. They boarded the fortress while Lutz was away, to the shock of the garrison, and the Rosen Ritter regiment engaged the Imperial defenders. They made their way to a reserve control room where they took control of the Thor Hammer and used it on the returning Lutz Fleet. He was forced to retreat and the garrison eventually surrendered and left. (LOGH: 'The Prodigal Sons Come Home')

Marr-Adetta

In mid-January, the main Imperial force engaged the Alliance Fleet proper in the Marr-Adetta Starzone. Although some advisers suggested to Reinhard that he should just go straight to Heinessen and ignore them, the Kaiser felt it would be discourteous to not take the veteran Alliance commander on his challenge. The system had no planets and a large asteroid field, making the terrain difficult for combat, which Fleet Admiral Bewcock used to his advantage to make up for their smaller numbers. The Imperials entered a corridor inside the asteroid field, where the Alliance navy was waiting them. However, the fighting was difficult and solar winds soon caused some damage as the Imperials were not expecting it. After using the terrain and attacking from unexpected locations, the Alliance forces put up unexpectedly tough resistance despite their low number. The battle culminated when the Alliance fleet went around and attack the Imperial armada from the rear. Although they made some initial gains against the fleets of Admirals Neidhart Müller, Adalbert von Fahrenheit, and Ernst von Eisenach, they were still greatly outnumbered and eventually lost the momentum. Surrounded, the Alliance fleet fought on in a last stand under Bewcock as the Black Lancers arrived in the system in time to deliver the coup de grace. Some ships broke out of the encirclement and escaped, but Bewcock and the remaining vessels fought on to the bitter end and were annihilated. (LOGH: 'The Battle of Marr-Adetta Starzone (Part One)', 'The Battle of Marr-Adetta Starzone (Part Two)')

Reinhard, through Admiral Mittermeyer, made Bewcock an offer of surrender and briefly spoke with him as he refused. After the battle ended he ordered all Imperial soldiers to salute the fallen admiral and his men for their valor and skill as the armada headed off to Heinessen. (LOGH: 'The Battle of Marr-Adetta Starzone (Part Two)')

Aftermath

When the Steinmetz Fleet, the lead formation of the Imperial expeditionary force, reached the Alliance capital they received word that High Council Chairman Rebelo had been killed in a coup and that the ringleader offered unconditional surrender to the Empire. Admiral Rockwell, chief of the Joint Operations HQ, had killed Rebelo in the hope that he would be spared because of it, but in fact his actions had the opposite effect. Reinhard, upon arrival on Heinessen on 9 February 800 UC (2 NIC / 491 IC / 3600 CE), had Rockwell executed for betraying his own head of state. His first move upon arrival was to visit Rebelo's funeral. Later, the Galactic Emperor took part in ceremonial events proclaiming the annexation of the Alliance by the Empire. Some mid- and low-level government functionaries resisted the Imperial occupation in small ways by refusing to cooperate (including Busias Adoula, Claude Monteil, and Graham Eberd Noel-Baker) but Reinhard spared them, saying that it was because these men were kept below the high levels that the Alliance had collapsed. (LOGH: 'The Edict of the Winter Rose Garden')

The conflict marked the end of the 273-year history of the Free Planets Alliance, on February 20, 800. It left the El Facil Independent Revolutionary Government as the only independent state remaining, which had succeeded in taking Iserlohn Fortress from the Empire.

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