Vol'jin is a War Criminal and Here's Why

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60 Tauren Death Knight
8370
A NOTE: All that is said in the below is my opinion. Feel free to disagree with my opinion. I am not trying to make you believe me, but I am simply offering up my own analysis of why Vol'jin and his so-called “rebellion” should not be trusted from an Alliance point of view.

This thread will also have some Godwin in it, so read at your own risk.

EDIT: Can't seem to post on Quirnheim, so this alt will have to do.

Since news of Patch 5.3 dropped, we're hearing a lot of stuff about Vol'jin. The leader of the Darkspear Trolls has been busy lately – first, he showed up in 5.1 doing stuff for Garrosh and the Dominance Offensive, before having to fake his death and go into hiding, becoming Garrosh's first long-term antagonist. However, with 5.3's release presumably on the horizon, we're finding out a LOT more about our most well-known Troll friend – mainly, he is forming up with his Darkspear and starting a rebellion against Garrosh; in effect, he's moving from verbal warfare to open warfare.

I know this news has many players, Horde and (to a lesser extent) Alliance players alike elated over the coming fall of Hellscream. Viva the Revolution, and so on. And while you'll have no argument with me that it's good that Meathead Lite is finally coming down from the Warchief's seat, I must take issue with the implementation of Vol'jin and his so-called “rebellion”.

The patch has also said that the Darkspear Rebellion, the new faction coming with said patch, will consist of both Horde and Alliance forces working together to destroy Garrosh and his Kor'kron, which seems to have gone from a simple bodyguard regiment to a Waffen-SS style army. Further patch data revealed that SI:7(Stormwind Intelligence, basically) will be the ones to “reach out” to Vol'jin and provide him with Alliance support for his rebellion.

….Wait a minute, what?

Yes, you heard that right. The ALLIANCE are the ones reaching out to Vol'jin. Now, this has a number of problems behind it, but the most damning of all is one simple fact about the fearless rebel commander:

Vol'jin is a war criminal.

“But, Quirnheim!” you might say, “He's been fighting Garrosh from the start! He always was angry with him going to war!”. To which I must respond that you appear only half-right. You see, Vol'jin is quite complex a character, which normally would not be a bad thing. But when you are attempting to convince the faction considered your enemy to help you fight a war, this complexity can sometimes lend to be a bad thing.

I have here three reasons why I believe that Vol'jin is a war criminal, and thus, unsuitable for Alliance aid in it's current form:

1) He has historically been all bark and no bite when it comes to Hellscream and his ilk.
This will no doubt stir controversy for many Horde players, but from my perspective, this is a fact. You see, I have played and continue to play max level Horde characters as well as max level Alliance characters, and this description of Vol'jin could not be more clear from my interactions with him and other Horde NPC's, reading the lore and other tidbits. First, I want to say that I am not calling Vol'jin a coward; merely, that his responses to Garrosh's increased aggression has generally been restricted to complaining about it rather then actually acting.

For starters, let's look at the Troll starting zone. At the end of the zone, after you have slain the Sea Witch, you are instructed to go and talk to Vol'jin. When you do, he has a conversation with you that has him questioning the Darkspear's continued existence within the Horde and his seemingly incoming decision to withdraw. However, Vol'jin goes on to have a conversation with Thrall, who by now is comfortably residing in the middle of the world. The conversation is as follows:

Quote:
Vol'jin: I've no love for Garrosh, dat much is for sure, but leavin' tha Horde is not a decision I be takin' lightly.

Vol'jin: Dere's only one with tha answers I seek. Ya can stay and watch if ya like.

* Thrall arrives *

Thrall: Vol'jin. It is good to see you, brother.

Vol'jin: Thrall! I am glad ya be well. Dere were rumors otherwise.

Thrall: Indeed. Someone did try to kill me, but that is not my greatest concert at the moment. The world itself calls for my aid.

Vol'jin: I must beg ya council, my friend. I can't be standin' by Garrosh while he be turnin' our people against each other for the sake of war. My respect for ya does not extend to dis new Horde... I am thinkin' of leadin' my people away.

Thrall: Vol'jin, I chose Garrosh because he has the strength to lead our people through these trying times.

Thrall: For all my supposed wisdom, there have been moments that I've barely been able to hold the Horde together. The Wrath Gate and Undercity displayed that clearly.

Thrall: The Horde cries for a hero of old. An orc of true blood that will bow to no human and bear no betrayal. A warrior that will make our people proud again. Garrosh can be that hero.

Thrall: I did not make this decision lightly, Vol'jin. I know our alliances will suffer from it. I know the Horde will be irreversibly changed. But I made this choice with confidence that Garrosh is exactly what the Horde needs.

Thrall: I'm trusting you and the other leaders to not let this divide our people. You are stronger than that.

Vol'jin: I understand, brotha, I will tink on this and be troublin' ya no furtha. You have a world to be savin'.

Thrall: Throm'ka, old friend.

* Thrall leaves. Vol'jin is now talking to the player *

Vol'jin: Ya are strong and proud, youngsblood. The Darskpear will be honored ta have you fight beside d'em.

Vol'jin: Thrall's word are true, as dey always be. The Horde is much more den a few old stubborn leaders and a handful of heroes from Northrend. The people be cryin' Garrosh's name... at least for now.


At the end of the conversation, Vol'jin reaffirms his loyalty to the Horde and vows that, while he may have differences with Garrosh, his “intentions are noble” and that “we must remain united as one Horde”. This is an almost complete 180 degree turnaround from the beginning of the conversation, where he states he has no respect for Garrosh. So, from this, we assume Vol'jin goes on his merry way being loyal to Hellscream's Horde – when given a chance to make a very bold decision(leave the Horde in protest of Hellscream), something that could have had devastating moral implications for the Horde – Vol'jin backs down when spoken to by Thrall. Huh?

The second example of this “all bark and no bite” attitude that he has is shown in Tides of War, the novel that was supposed to “pump the Alliance fans up” by...blowing up Theramore. Now, this is another issue entirely, but enough of that aside for now. So, Vol'jin, Baine and all of the Horde leadership are called to Orgrimmar for a meeting with Garrosh, where he announces his intentions to conquer Theramore for the Horde. Now, what would you assume Vol'jin might say, if he was as peace-oriented as so many Horde players now proudly proclaim? He might express his disgust, his horror, at the very least, say something about how it might not even work?

No. He remains silent. Yes, at the very thought of destroying a -nation- ruled by a woman who murdered her own father to help Vol'jin and his allies survive complete destruction, he remains silent. Now, this would make sense if not for the fact that later on in the book, while eating dinner and talking to Garrosh in the ruins of Northwatch Hold, Hellscream allows Vol'jin to speak his mind because he is “loyal to the Horde”, meaning that Meathead would have allowed Vol'jin to have his opinion – maybe even offer up an alternative! But instead, he chose to remain quiet.

The third and final example I'll give in show of this is not dialog or a book, but a letter received by Horde players during the Dominance Offensive storyline. Vol'jin, by then in HIDING(having gone from “meh” to public enemy number 1 in Garrosh's eyes), sends the Horde PC a letter after learning of the Divine Bell. In it, Vol'jin states that he “doesn't want Hellscream to have the artifact”, he would “be more comfortable if the Bell were in Horde hands.” This is another complete contradiction from his earlier attitudes; again, if he really wanted Hellscream to have his hands off of the Bell, he should have made that clear to the player – it didn't matter, then! He was already in hiding, and thus had no so-called “repercussions” to fear from Garrosh.

So, in short, Vol'jin might complain, complain, complain about Garrosh being mean to him and his people, but when given the chance to act, even at the expense of himself(after all, isn't the Horde's high and mighty ideal that you should stand up for what you think is right, even if it means death or injury?), he chooses instead to remain quiet.

2. Vol'jin's defenders attempt to use the argument that Garrosh “forced him” into acting the way he did through ordering him around. This falls flat on its face when you realize that this is not a valid excuse.

The term “superior orders”, otherwise known as the Nuremberg Defense, is the doctrine that many Horde players spout off in their attempt to defend Vol'jin from any criticism of his blind obedience to Garrosh's orders. They say that Garrosh forced him to act and follow him, and if he did not, it would mean death for him and/or his people. However, again, as I briefly touched on above, the Horde was supposedly founded because its races stood up for what they felt was right(honor and a new future), even at the cost of the lives of some of its members. Cairne Bloodhoof, for example, stood up for his belief that Garrosh would make a !@#$ Warchief, and is now a corpse because of it. However, he stood up – and the fact he rocked the boat was able to frighten Garrosh somewhat.

Now, time for some legal rubbish. The Nuremberg Defense is defined as “a plea in a court of law that a soldier be held not guilty for crimes ordered by a superior officer”. This defense was most famously used in the Nuremberg Trials; where German officials argued they were “just following orders”. The defense was quashed and the defendants hung for their crimes(most of them).

Applied to Warcraft, the law does not exist. But put that aside for the moment; the fact Horde apologists argue for an interpretation of it compels me to address it in my points here. This defense is not valid, even here where it doesn't exist. Vol'jin, as leader of the Darkspear Trolls, was responsible for several things independent from Garrosh and his “orders”:

-First, it was Vol'jin and Baine Bloodhoof, two of the most vocal critics of Garrosh, who personally lead the attack on Northwatch Hold, Vol'jin “co-lead Troll and Tauren forces across the Barrens to Northwatch.”. Ironic, no? The two faction leaders that Horde apologists state are “pro-peace” are the first to rush into battle, causing Northwatch to fall to the Horde.

-When the attack on Theramore began, Vol'jin “not only lead his trolls into battle but was chosen along with Baine to be a part of Garrosh's personal attack force on Theramore's North Gate.”. Instead of saying no or choosing to fight elsewhere, Vol'jin happily lead his Trolls into battle, without so much as a peep.

Just following orders doesn't really apply to Vol'jin. He followed his orders...and went above and beyond them by personally fighting in Northwatch and Theramore. In fact, he was the one who noted the bloodlust of his warriors meant they were reluctant to retreat when Garrosh sounded his trap. Garrosh didn't tell him to sack Northwatch or lead his Trolls into battle...he made that decision himself.

3) As a result of these events, Vol'jin has absolutely no credibility whatsoever among Alliance forces.
It's as simple as that. Alliance forces should not even WANT to speak to someone like that. Someone who helped Garrosh destroy Theramore without even as much as uttering a peep? I know I wouldn't want to ally with someone like that. But, I digress – because this point brings up something even more egregious that, thanks to the PTR, we know – the Alliance is going to be supplying Vol'jin with materiel. And where, praytell, will that materiel come from?

Northwatch Hold and Astranaar.

Yes, you read that right. Northwatch Hold – which he helped to sack, which was later recaptured and rebuilt – and Astranaar, where Garrosh decided “what's yours is mine, what's mine is mine, if you disagree, DIE” in terms of lumber. Why in the high heavens will these places be supplying someone like this? His credibility with Alliance officials should be next to zero by now. But yet, according to the PTR, he has the arrogance to be suspicious of Alliance players and their efforts to aid him? What in the hell? The fact that we as Alliance officials go cap-in-hand to Vol'jin, begging to be allowed to help him is insulting enough, but the fact he has the audacity to be suspicious and distrustful of us is even worse.

The supplies we are now going to be giving away, for FREE, to Vol'jin and his rebels could be going towards rebuilding the two areas I mentioned. To feeding the people there, to re-arming the military – for defending Forest Song, for heaven's sake. Instead, we give it away to Vol'jin and his friends with no consequences what so ever.

If Vol'jin REALLY wants help, he should have to ask for it. The Alliance has nothing to lose in terms of Vol'jin's gambit, but Vol'jin and his rebels could be wiped out if they don't get help. The onus should be on them to come cap-in-hand to the Alliance and ask for their support in de-throning Garrosh in a joint effort. And instead of SI:7 or whoever simply going “O-kay!”, there should be CONDITIONS attached to this aid. Call it a Carthaginian Peace, if you will – but not to the same extent; in regards to Carthage, the Romans burnt it to the ground and called it “peace”, but I'm not calling for the Horde to be destroyed. Rather, Vol'jin and co should have to accept some serious conditions for Alliance aid of any kind – which I will address in another post.

In conclusion, these reasons are some of many that I wanted to state for my opinion on why Vol'jin should not be trusted. He has a history of refusing to act when given a choice and blind compliance of Garrosh despite his bad-mouthing. As a result, the Alliance should look upon him and his so-called “rebels” with thinly veiled contempt and refuse to give any help unless they agree to some kind of conditions.

As a precaution, I don my flame suit now.
90 Troll Shaman
5420
No such thing as a concept of war laws or war crimes in Azeroth, and Vol'jin hasn't committed any war crimes, but you've decided to accuse him of war crimes as an emotional tug designed to inflame anyway.

In short: Move along, nothing to see here.
Edited by Kellick on 4/1/2013 5:39 PM PDT
90 Draenei Shaman
13760
In short: No such thing as a concept of war laws or war crimes in Azeroth, and Vol'jin hasn't committed any war crimes, but you've decided to accuse him of war crimes as an emotional tug designed to inflame anyway.


Isnt that the same thing we are doing to Garrosh? I mean I know what he is doing is bad, but I think I have done worse to the trolls. Shotting trolls blindfolded? Pff, kids stuff. I have sent trolls to preverbial hell because I wanted some epic loot from a drakkari god.
Edited by Zerde on 4/1/2013 5:42 PM PDT
60 Tauren Death Knight
8370
In short: No such thing as a concept of war laws or war crimes in Azeroth, and Vol'jin hasn't committed any war crimes, but you've decided to accuse him of war crimes as an emotional tug designed to inflame anyway.


Again, I point out that this is just an opinion on why in my eyes, in any other way, he would be - and why the Alliance should not trust him or go cap-in-hand begging to be allowed the privilege to help him, something that insults me most of all.
90 Troll Shaman
5420
Again, I point out that this is just an opinion on why in my eyes, in any other way, he would be - and why the Alliance should not trust him or go cap-in-hand begging to be allowed the privilege to help him, something that insults me most of all.

And again, I point out that nothing of the sort happens and that your entire post relies on the use of inflammatory language to elicit an emotional response.
No such thing as a concept of war laws or war crimes in Azeroth, and Vol'jin hasn't committed any war crimes, but you've decided to accuse him of war crimes as an emotional tug designed to inflame anyway.

In short: Move along, nothing to see here.


We don't really need an official Geneva Convention in WoW lore to get angry at the fact that Vol'jin actively assisted in the downfall of at least 2 Alliance nations in the recent past. It's pretty valid to be distrustful of that, and I don't see why "Well, see, moral standards in Azeroth are DIFFERENT" really excuses that, especially for Alliance characters who lost homes and loved ones to attacks which Vol'jin participated in or orchestrated.
You work with the tools you've got and take the world as it is.

Vol'jin is the tool at hand, Azeroth is what it is, and Garrosh has to go, period. The rest is just details.
60 Tauren Death Knight
8370
No such thing as a concept of war laws or war crimes in Azeroth, and Vol'jin hasn't committed any war crimes, but you've decided to accuse him of war crimes as an emotional tug designed to inflame anyway.

In short: Move along, nothing to see here.


We don't really need an official Geneva Convention in WoW lore to get angry at the fact that Vol'jin actively assisted in the downfall of at least 2 Alliance nations in the recent past. It's pretty valid to be distrustful of that, and I don't see why "Well, see, moral standards in Azeroth are DIFFERENT" really excuses that, especially for Alliance characters who lost homes and loved ones to attacks which Vol'jin participated in or orchestrated.


Exactly the point that I'm getting at. And now we're expected to happily be all "We love you!" and PROVE OUR LOYALTY to his cause.

Wat?
60 Tauren Death Knight
8370

In short: Move along, nothing to see here.


No, I think not. The OP, while he may be wrong or right, put a lot of time into his post and it's extremely rude to try and dismiss it entirely like this.

Next time, speak for yourself, because I sure do not like people like you speaking for me.


Thank you. I spent almost an hour and a half writing this up, if you must know.
60 Tauren Death Knight
8370
How is it any different then, Kellick, going by your logic, when Horde posters call Varian or any other Alliance leader the same thing?

Oh, right. To you that's "legitimate criticism". But when I post this, it's "trolling".

This ain't trolling. This is just an opinion piece, FFS.
90 Troll Hunter
13410
04/01/2013 05:51 PMPosted by Rothoof
How is it any different then, Kellick, going by your logic, when Horde posters call Varian or any other Alliance leader the same thing?

I don't remember ever calling Varian or any Alliance leader a war criminal.
60 Tauren Death Knight
8370
Oh I've read threads calling Varian much worse. I just laid out my case for everyone to see and offer insight on. Right or wrong, just...don't say I'm trolling when I'm not.
90 Troll Shaman
5420
04/01/2013 05:51 PMPosted by Rothoof
How is it any different then, Kellick, going by your logic, when Horde posters call Varian or any other Alliance leader the same thing?

When people call Varian a war criminal, they're either morons or trolling. It certainly isn't legitimate criticism then, and I don't appreciate you trying to make this thread about me.

Had you not framed your entire post and thread on a fallacious and inflammatory statement, I wouldn't have raised a fuss.

Had you framed your post as "The Alliance has several reasons not to trust Vol'jin", I'd be more than willing to entertain it as anything other than trolling, but you went and led with "war criminal".
90 Troll Hunter
13410
People like to call Vol'jin a War Criminal when he's not. Everything he's done so far has been for survival.

I see posters say all the time, if he really opposed Garrosh, he would have refused to participate in Northwatch and Theramore and "died with his honor intact."

But that would be stupid and would accomplish nothing. Garrosh would be more powerful because he would have Troll slaves rather than Troll rebels, Theramore would still be bombed, no one would gain anything, and Vol'jin would have died for nothing.
25 Blood Elf Paladin
0
We don't really need an official Geneva Convention in WoW lore to get angry at the fact that Vol'jin actively assisted in the downfall of at least 2 Alliance nations in the recent past. It's pretty valid to be distrustful of that, and I don't see why "Well, see, moral standards in Azeroth are DIFFERENT" really excuses that, especially for Alliance characters who lost homes and loved ones to attacks which Vol'jin participated in or orchestrated.


Moral standards on Azeroth aren't even really different unless you're an Orc or Undead. They just aren't codified.
90 Human Warrior
13525
Vol'Jin a war criminal.

Yeah this is about is accurate as calling Garrosh a peacemonger.
Vol'Jin a war criminal.

Yeah this is about is accurate as calling Garrosh a peacemonger.


To true.

Moral standards on Azeroth aren't even really different unless you're an Orc or Undead. They just aren't codified.


Nail on the head.
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