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Old October 26th 17, 18:22   #1
Raw Shark
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The Wind Swords

I'm just finishing watching The Gathering again, it's been a while. Like all pilots, it's clunky, but interesting. The road not taken is always an interesting subject, especially in the B5 universe.

But the assassination plot is also interesting. The assassin is an unnamed member of the Wind Swords, one of the five clans of the Minbari Warrior Caste. He sneaks onto the station from a Narn transport, and tries to kill Ambassador Kosh. Leaving out how a physical poison could affect an <spoiler alert!> energy being, just what was the plan here?

The Minbari are supposed to hold the Vorlons in, what, high regard? Sacred status? No Minbari has killed another Minbari in a thousand years, on orders from Valen. Do they not have a similar law regarding killing Vorlons? And if they do, what would it take to break such a commandment? The only other thing we know about the Wind Swords is that they gave sanctuary to Deathwalker, the notorious Dilgar war criminal. She gave them "terrible" weapons, which they later offered to the Grey Council for use in the Earth-Minbari War. It is not known if the Grey Council accepted. But it does seem very unlikely that the Grey Council approved of the plan to assassinate Ambassador Kosh. The Wind Swords were acting on their own. It is assumed from the clunky pilot movie that they simply wanted the Vorlons to blame Commander Sinclair, and maneuver them into retaliating against Earth itself. As revenge for the death of Dukhat, that seems reasonable, although rather dishonorable for a Minbari mission. Has something changed?

Did Deathwalker's mere presence corrupt the Wind Swords, or their leadership? Was it her words, her ideology, her technology? There is something serious going on here, something that would cause a fanatical clan of Minbari warriors to defy the authority of the Grey Council, and even attempt to kill a Vorlon ambassador, one of the Minbari Federation's key allies.

Were there any consequences for this fiasco? The Vorlons are rather protective of each other, and would obviously want to discourage attacks on their representatives in the future. Making examples would help with that. If the Vorlons were ready to open fire on Babylon 5 over this fiasco, what sort of collective punishment would they have in mind for the Wind Swords trying to kill Kosh? The Grey Council should be ready to accommodate any demands from the Vorlon Empire.

But what is it about the corruption aspect of the Wind Swords' contact with Deathwalker? The Dilgar invasion of the League of Non-Aligned Worlds (which may or may not be aligned with Earth?...) was devastating for the races of the League. Their rapid and total military success in that campaign, combined with the corruption element, makes me think of the Shadows. And it is entirely possible that the Shadows just fell in love with Earth after Earthforce smashed the powerful and terrifying Dilgar, demonstrating their prowess in the true great game of the galaxy, the survival of the fittest. But before that, were they supporting the Dilgar in any way?

The point being, what else would cause such a powerful Minbari warrior clan to split from the Grey Council's rule, and attempt to kill one of the Minbari Federation's most important allies? They sheltered Deathwalker, but did she affect changes in their thinking and decision-making? Did she peel them away from the traditional Minbari-Vorlon alliance in some way? This is all unexplained.



Unfortunately, there is very little information on the Wind Swords or the Dilgar in the new B5 encyclopedia. But perhaps that will change.


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Old October 27th 17, 04:30   #2
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Re: The Wind Swords

WOW! A whole lot of interesting here. I love where you went, but I'm just not so sure we're supposed to think it was a Wind Sword plot. Maybe, but I think it could also just be one person. So does anyone know differently? Is the leadership of the Clan meant to be behind the attempt? I personally don't think it seems possible, but please speak up if you do know the truth about the origin of the assassination attempt.
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Old October 27th 17, 10:06   #3
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Re: The Wind Swords

Firstly Vorlons are NOT energy beings. Joe has posted on this here

http://www.jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1...uery=poisoning

This explains the reasons for the attempt on Kosh's life from Joe's post on GEnie

https://groups.google.com/forum/#!se...U/44hNPGDTNQEJ
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Old October 27th 17, 15:12   #4
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Re: The Wind Swords

Huh! Thanks, b5historyman. I hadn't seen those comments from jms (if it wasn't on the Lurker's Guide, I probably haven't seen it). My friends and I had long suspected a Shadow connection with the Dilgar, based on Deathwalker's philosophy, the forward leap in her tech, and the fact that the Vorlons appear to fire a warning shot right before they frag Deathwalker's ship. A warning to who? Probably whoever the Shadows had escorting Deathwalker.


It's funny, though. In one way, I'm pleased that my friends were right. In another, it feels like the B5 universe is now slightly smaller. One fewer mystery...
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Old October 27th 17, 15:40   #5
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Re: The Wind Swords

HOLD THE PHONE!!!!!! If this were true then wouldn't the Minbari government be forced to take action against the Wind Swords? Delenn knows the truth so wouldn't there have to be repercussions in the Warrior Caste? (Okay now show me where that part of the story is so I can read some more awesome facts. )
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Old October 28th 17, 04:35   #6
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Re: The Wind Swords

In one of the Technomage novels, someone thinks (maybe Kosh?) about how the Shadows have evolved to the same extent that the Vorlons have, that they are energy beings, but still prefer to use physical bodies. I haven't read those books in a while, so I can't tell you which book or page, or the exact quote. I think that trilogy is considered 'mostly canon' or something along those lines.

I hadn't heard about those JMS posts on the assassination details, I'll check them out, thanks! I also mainly rely on the Lurker's Guide for such insights. That page is so great.

I find it kind of funny that I even brought all this up. I don't really enjoy The Gathering all that much, although I did enjoy some of the performances, and Stewart Copeland's soundtrack. JMS said that it was filmed using a five year old script, and clearly the story went in different directions once the series began. They largely moved away from the sinister Minbari Warrior Caste stories, with a few notable exceptions. But we never even saw a Wind Sword after The Gathering, either on-screen or in the books or comics, as far as I know. Yet another thing I always liked about B5, JMS' willingness to jettison plot lines in favor of more interesting ones he came up with along the way. The flexibility of his storytelling is really impressive. But I also like how the ongoing tensions, suspicions and resentment from the Earth-Minbari War never disappeared. For much of my childhood, the bitterness over the Vietnam War cast such a shadow over the United States, and it does take time to move on. It was refreshing to see such depth in a war story on a television science fiction series, I think exploring the psychological aftermath of a conflict was almost unheard of at the time.

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Old October 28th 17, 21:17   #7
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Re: The Wind Swords

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raw Shark View Post
In one of the Technomage novels, someone thinks (maybe Kosh?) about how the Shadows have evolved to the same extent that the Vorlons have, that they are energy beings, but still prefer to use physical bodies. I haven't read those books in a while, so I can't tell you which book or page, or the exact quote. I think that trilogy is considered 'mostly canon' or something along those lines.

I hadn't heard about those JMS posts on the assassination details, I'll check them out, thanks! I also mainly rely on the Lurker's Guide for such insights. That page is so great.

I find it kind of funny that I even brought all this up. I don't really enjoy The Gathering all that much, although I did enjoy some of the performances, and Stewart Copeland's soundtrack. JMS said that it was filmed using a five year old script, and clearly the story went in different directions once the series began. They largely moved away from the sinister Minbari Warrior Caste stories, with a few notable exceptions. But we never even saw a Wind Sword after The Gathering, either on-screen or in the books or comics, as far as I know. Yet another thing I always liked about B5, JMS' willingness to jettison plot lines in favor of more interesting ones he came up with along the way. The flexibility of his storytelling is really impressive. But I also like how the ongoing tensions, suspicions and resentment from the Earth-Minbari War never disappeared. For much of my childhood, the bitterness over the Vietnam War cast such a shadow over the United States, and it does take time to move on. It was refreshing to see such depth in a war story on a television science fiction series, I think exploring the psychological aftermath of a conflict was almost unheard of at the time.

Raw Shark

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- Some angry guy (who's made a lot of great films)
I've nearly finished my umpteenth read through of the techno-mage trilogy and have yet to see any statement to that effect. Besides Joe has said the Vorlons are physical beings and I was never led to believe anything other than that when I was corresponding with him and Fiona during the compilation of the Babylon 5 Historical Database
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Old October 28th 17, 21:23   #8
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Re: The Wind Swords

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Originally Posted by KoshFan View Post
Huh! Thanks, b5historyman. I hadn't seen those comments from jms (if it wasn't on the Lurker's Guide, I probably haven't seen it). My friends and I had long suspected a Shadow connection with the Dilgar, based on Deathwalker's philosophy, the forward leap in her tech, and the fact that the Vorlons appear to fire a warning shot right before they frag Deathwalker's ship. A warning to who? Probably whoever the Shadows had escorting Deathwalker.


It's funny, though. In one way, I'm pleased that my friends were right. In another, it feels like the B5 universe is now slightly smaller. One fewer mystery...
That whole "warning shot" thing, is just fan myth and people are making something out of nothing. To wit, an organic vessel jumps out of hyperspace possibly slightly disorientated from the energies of the jump point, has no firing resolution and takes a wild shot then locks on and destroys Jha'dur's flyer.
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Old October 29th 17, 21:49   #9
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Re: The Wind Swords

What? Millions of years of evolution and the Vorlons haven't a) dealt with that problem or b) learned not to shoot at random? It actually makes less sense than a covert Shadow/Drakh/somebody else escort.

I have no doubt jms said as much somewhere -- you seem to have much more access and resources than I do -- but this is one of those places where I have to say he's entitled to be stupid about his own show. I had a similar moment when he said that Sheridan was "the one who is already dead" that Londo must not kill, when Morden is such a vastly better candidate.
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Old October 30th 17, 10:16   #10
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Re: The Wind Swords

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Originally Posted by KoshFan View Post
What? Millions of years of evolution and the Vorlons haven't a) dealt with that problem or b) learned not to shoot at random? It actually makes less sense than a covert Shadow/Drakh/somebody else escort.

I have no doubt jms said as much somewhere -- you seem to have much more access and resources than I do -- but this is one of those places where I have to say he's entitled to be stupid about his own show. I had a similar moment when he said that Sheridan was "the one who is already dead" that Londo must not kill, when Morden is such a vastly better candidate.
There wouldn't be any kind of Shadow/Allies escort, Jha'dur came straight from Minbar. Why would the Shadows allies be bothered with someone who, to all intents and purposes was dead?

We can speculate as much but the facts are the first shot just missed but got it's target on the second.
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