I was thinking back to working on the Operation: Shieldwall dailies with my alt, who had just visited with Jaina and Anduin in Dalaran. I was thinking about Jaina’s explanation at the time of why the Kirin Tor needed to remain neutral. She explained that the organization had many instances when their members had done horrible things. So, here is what I am wondering: what then gives the Kirin Tor the right to murder members of the Sunreavers when only a few of them were part of the theft of the Divine Bell?
A few bad apples in the bushel
When considering the events of the Operation: Shieldwall dailies, it becomes ever clearer that there is some kind of disconnect in the events. Now, we all know the history of Jaina, and that makes her views at the start of the events of Lion’s Landing ever more honorable. The Horde killed her people, and yet she took over the Kirin Tor and staunchly argued for the neutrality of the organization in the face of deepening war between the two sides. I have felt bad for Jaina over what happened to Theramore, but I had newfound respect for her that she can find the inner strength to take over the leadership of the Kirin Tor and still be respectful of the Horde part of the organization. But, why would she then lump all of the Sunreavers into the same group, even though there was no proof of how many had actually been a part of the theft?
As I said, the trigger for this thought was the explanation in the first Dalaran visit, when Jaina is telling Anduin why the neutrality of the Kirin Tor was so important in the current conflict. She tells him of Kel’thuzad, who had turned his skill in magic to necromancy. She also talks about Kael’thas, who is said to have betrayed the Kirin Tor, even though he was a member. The question I would ask Jaina, if she was taking questions, is “How can you condemn all Sunreavers for the actions of a few, when magic practitioners were not condemned and slaughtered en masse for the actions of those few?” I think this is a fair question. One argument could be that, based on the events in Day of the Dragon, there was a fair amount of prejudice against magic users, as was seen by the approach taking when Rhonin and Vereesa were in the Paladin keep.
Punish the culprits, not the group
While I am the last person to forgive and forget the actions of those who have committed crimes in the game, I do think that those who did work with Garrosh should be found and punished, not all of the Sunreavers. I doubt every member of the Sunreavers was involved in the portals from Dalaran to Darnassus, and from Dalaran to wherever it went next. I do not think the members of the Sunreavers should have been killed, but those who resisted could easily have been subdued and taken to the Violet Hold pending questioning and trial, if needed. Having now done the post theft events in Dalaran, I know that I was essentially aggressively attacking many Sunreavers who had done nothing wrong, or at least nothing that had been proven. I did, though, also kill some who resisted capture at least, and at worst attacked me when I arrived.
I am not one for unnecessary violence. There are times, to stop horrible things, that violence is needed. There may also be a reasonable need for violence to protect oneself. However, some of the deaths I participated in during those events in Dalaran were neither. I would have enjoyed that visit to Dalaran more if there was some attempt to capture without killing the Sunreavers I came in contact with. There must have been some way for the quest to be ‘capture or kill’ instead of kill only, though if I look at the giver of those quests, one can clearly see why that was.
Prejudice and vengeance
The person handing out those quests in Dalaran has a lot of reason for wanting the death of any Sunreavers we can find and kill. As I did not see Jaina say that the Sunreavers should be killed, I can only go based on the person who told me to, and the fact that there is no apparent contrition for the killing of the Sunreavers in that phase of Operation: Shieldwall coming in patch 5.2. Vereesa Windrunner, wife of Rhonin, the dearly departed leader of the Kirin Tor, has ample reason to hate the Horde. They have killed her family, she lost her sister Alleria trying to stop them, and they burned the forests of Quel’Thalas. All of this before they killed her husband and many others by dropping a mana bomb on Theramore.
When the bomb dropped on Theramore, Vereesa and Night Elf Shandris Feathermoon were only spared from the blast by the fact they had gone chasing the last vestiges of the Horde, and by the actions of Rhonin who pulled the mama bomb to Jaina’s tower, which was heavily protected by powerful magic. Still, Vereesa would have no doubt seen the explosion that took the father of her children from her, all on the orders of the Warchief. For someone who already had a deep hatred of the Horde, this would have no doubt been the last straw.
So, if we assume the kill orders came from Vereesa and not Jaina, then it would not be seen as bad as the potential hypocrisy of the two conflicting stances. However, as there is no contrition or apology by Jaina to the Sunreavers that has been datamined in 5.2, nor anything in 5.1 showing the results of that event, one can only imagine that the order to kill the Sunreavers that we do kill came from the top, from Jaina Proudmoore. This leads me to an uneasy feeling, one that makes me not sure I like the situation I am in. I am killing for an organization with a questionable past, who is blaming a group for the sins of a few, while feeling blameless when some of their own members have committed horrible crimes.
What do you think? Do you think Jaina and Vereesa have the right to paint all of the Sunreavers with the criminal brush?