- "Not everyone on Mandalore believes our commitment to peace is a sign of progress. There is a group that calls itself Death Watch. I imagine these are the renegades you are looking for. They idolize violence and the warrior ways of the past."
- ―Duchess Satine Kryze of Mandalore to Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi
Death Watch was a Mandalorian splinter group who opposed the New Mandalorian Republic Government of Duchess Satine Kryze. Death Watch served as a terrorist group who were backed by Count Dooku and his Confederacy of Independent Systems.
Death Watch was founded some 40 years before the Clone Wars by Tor Vizsla. Tor Vizsla fought against Jaster Mereel and his True Mandalorians, evantually wiping them out in 44 BBY by alerting the jedi of their target on Galidran. Unfortunately, one of them, Jango Fett, survived and then killed Tor Vizsla. Death Watch was then disbanded and scattered. When the Clone Wars began, Death Watch began to reorganize itself under the leadership of one of Tor Vizsla's descendents, Pre Vizsla.
The Clone WarsEdit
During the Clone Wars, the Death Watch, despite being weakened managed to operate under the Mandalorian principle of ba'slan shev'la, or "strategic disappearance". Maintaining a fairly secret existence following Tor Vizsla's death, the remains of the Death Watch showed themselves nearly twelve years later, shortly after the Battle of Geonosis. With the True Mandalorians gone and Jango Fett dead following the events on Geonosis, the Death Watch set its sights on the Mandalorian faction known as the New Mandalorians, a reformist political faction emphasizing pacifism that was interested in moving the Mandalorians even further from it's conquering warrior roots than the True Mandalorians, with their goal being a peaceful and neutral Mandalorian state. At the time, the Death Watch was operating from a base on Concordia, a moon of Mandalore, where they were secretly led by Concordia's governor, Pre Vizsla. In order to get support for their attempt at taking over Mandalore, the Death Watch allied themselves with the Confederacy of Independent Systems. As part of this alliance, Death Watch commandos performed sabotage missions for the CIS against Republic targets. One such mission involved a commando attempting to sabotage a Republic cruiser; the Death Watch commando was captured, but rather than surrender and submit to questioning, he committed suicide. His actions in addition to falsified rumors led to the Republic's belief that Duchess Satine Kryze, leader of the New Mandalorians and head of the Council of Neutral Systems, was training a Mandalorian army for the CIS.
To find the rule behind this, a member of the Jedi Council, Obi-wan Kenobi, was dispatched to Mandalore to meet with the Duchess. At first, the Duchess and her advisers discounted any Mandalorian involvement until Kenobi showed holographic recordings of the Death Watch saboteur. She later revealed the existence of rumors of the Death Watch's return. This was later proven when a Mandalorian bombed the memorial shrine in the New Mandalorian capital of Sundari before committing suicide when Kenobi attempted to apprehend him. Left at the bomb site was a holographic representation of the Death Watch symbol, further highlighting the group's return. During these events Pre Vizsla communicated with Count Dooku who revealed his strategy for the Republic to establish peacekeeping forces on Mandalore. Dooku hoped this would cause unrest and lead the Mandalorian populace to the Death Watch's ideals. Kenobi later discovered the Death Watch base of operations on Concordia and Pre Vizsla revealed himself to the Jedi and the duchess as the leader of the faction. The Death Watch Mandalorians managed to escape and abandoned their base, allowing them to remain at large.
When the Duchess journeyed to Coruscant to dismiss any thought of Republic occupation, Death Watch made a second attempt on her life. Mandalore's senator, Tal Merrik, was secretly in league with the Death Watch and used his senatorial stamp to smuggle several assassin probes aboard the duchess' ship. When Kenobi gathered the senatorial passengers together and confronted them with a probe killer, its docility betrayed Merrik and he made his move to take Kryze hostage. With the duchess in tow, he made his way to the bridge where he murdered the crew and contacted Vizsla for extraction. A trio of Droch-class boarding ships attached themselves to the vessel and unloaded several B2 super battle droids to cover Merrik's escape. When Kenobi attempted to arrest the senator, Merrik revealed that he had also taken the precaution of rigging the ship's engines to explode and made his way to the waiting boarding ships. Before he could make his escape, however, he was stabbed in the back by the jedi Skywalker.
Once Satine safely arrived at the galactic capital, the Death Watch reoccupied their base on Concordia as a staging area for their impending invasion of Mandalore. During a holographic conference with Count Dooku, Pre Vizsla made his move to secure Mandalore's support. A Death Watch assassin was sent to Coruscant to assassinate Satine, as well as an informant who gave her a recording from Deputy Minister Jerec pleading no military assistance. The assassin, however, failed to stop Satine from delivering the evidence to the Galactic Senate thanks to Kenobi's intervention. The Senate revoked its vote to dispatch Republic forces, which compelled Death Watch to cease its planned attack.As the coup became inopportune, Dooku abandoned the Death Watch, leading once again to their exile. The Death Watch became a murderous band of nomadic outlaws, battle-worn rogues that wandered the Clone Wars. Death Watch moved to Carlac, where they set up a camp and enslave the Ming Po women of a nearby village to feed them.
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