Red X Mission: Shake Hands With The Devil
|Red X: Shake Hands With The Devil|
|Dates run:||August 9-18, 2008|
|Read the logs:||Red X: Shake Hands With The Devil|
"You cannot. You might think that you are helping, and perhaps you will save a few individual people, at least for the moment, but what will happen after that?"
Red X finds itself in the middle of a political conflict in Sri Lanka, and witnesses the start of a new genocide.
Part 2 of the Imperium Stratagem.
Red X is contacted by Minister Robert MacDonald of the Canadian government, on behalf of Department H and the Red Cross. James Hudson has developed a new low tech and high capacity water purification system which they intend to deploy through out Red Cross camps around the world. Both believe it would be an excellent public relations idea to have Red X involved in the first installation; a sort of 'our newest volunteers with our newest humanitarian project' idea. Red X agreed, and even convinced Callisto to help them determine how to install the system on their own. Just prior to their flight to Sri Lanka, where it has been arranged to install the system, an explosion in Toronto delays the Department H technicians from going with them, and instead, they take Callisto with them to help.
Shortly after arriving in north Sri Lanka, a mutant Tamil Tiger uses his abilities to sink two Indian naval vessels patrolling off the northern coast of Sri Lanka. It proves to be a disastrous mistake as it gives PM D. Ken Neramani exactly the politic excuse he's been looking for to expand his zone of control.The Tamil Tigers are currently in a state of civil war. The Northern Tamil leadership has been using the Eastern Tamils as a money making resource and as cannon fodder. One of the leaders has privately approached the Sanhalese dominated Sri Lankan government with the offer to make serious concessions if the Tamil leadership in the north can be neutralized. With the attack on the Indian Navy, D. Ken has very quietly given the Sri Lankan government the option of ceding overall control to India and retaining their positions as an unofficial protectorate of India, or being flat out invaded and crushed. D. Ken's own party is rooted in the north, and by splitting the Tamil influence on parties in the south of India, he strengthens his own political position.
Sri Lanka agrees, and a deal is struck that the Eastern Tamils will be allowed to operate a semi-autonomous state which answers to India, as opposed to the Sri Lankan authorities. In the meantime, the Indian military lands a military force on the north of the country, engaging in 'counter-terrorist' activities. That force is being coordinated by a unit of the Indian military that D.Ken and his allies have had in development for years; a mutant strike force, supposedly specifically designed to counter mutant terrorism like what was inflicted on them. The reality, of course, is that the force isn't suppressing terrorists as much as breaking the back of the Northern Tamil communities, killing those who won't flee, and uprooting any possible hiding grounds for the Tigers. The force, called the 'Khusrawi Agoriya' translates loosely to Imperial Guard.
The camp that the Red X people are at lies right in front of that army, and is soon filled to capacity with refugees, with more trying to get in. Eventually, the political decision is made not to, as attacking a Red Cross camp is harder to deny, but those not protected by it are forced to watch those outside driven away, killed, or marched back into the countryside.
Red X finds itself in a situation unlike any they had been in, forced to help only those who they could, and watching helpless as those they cannot help are marched away. Crystal prevents Laurie from trying to charge out of the camp to stop an attack, and Callisto nearly killed an Indian soldier in retribution for the killing of a Tamil. Even Yvette and Angel end up ready to hold the line at the gates of the camp against an opponent certain to kill them in a futile attempt to help. Eventually, Red X is forced to leave by the Sri Lankan government, and return to the school, left only with telling people what they saw as a way to do anything further.
Trivia and Meta
This is the first time Red-X has been deployed on a humanitarian mission without being in response to a disaster or specific event, perhaps indicating a greater willingness by the Red Cross to trust them in ongoing humanitarian projects.
Shake Hands With The Devil was the title of the book by Lieutenant-General Roméo Dallaire of the Canadian Forces, which chronicles the fateful months of Dallaire's tour as Force Commander of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR) in 1993-1994, during which he witnessed the 1994 Rwandan Genocide. The themes of helplessness in the face of political pressures and the ability to only be able to save what you can are constantly reinforced in the plot.
Ironically, less than three days after the end of this plot, the Eastern Tamils of the Tamil Eelam accused the northern leadership of the group with corruption, and Sri Lanka remains poised on the brink of a new civil war.
The events of this plot still occurred in Phase 2, but specifics, such as which characters were involved, remain fuzzy for the purposes of not breaking the world. ;)