Sardaukar?

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Setzer
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Setzer » 09 Sep 2011 20:30

Frank Herbert isn't the only one to comment on harsh environment making better potential recruits. In The Gallic Wars, Caesar mentioned the Belgae as being the bravest because they were the furthest away from the decadent comforts of city living. That made them excellent material for soldiers.

http://forums.spacebattles.com/showthread.php?t=134993

This is what I meant by a Frank Herbert imitator who doesn't understand the purpose of harsh training. Sure, you don't want a collection of soft wimps, but suffering alone doesn't make good soldiers. The author spends so much time chronicling how much recruits are made to suffer he almost totally ignores the parts of military training that aren't physical conditioning. To give you an example, the recruits mentioned in the above thread are not allowed to quit their Special forces training unless they ring a bell. The instructors will physically beat anyone who is heading towards the bell. So...

Let's say there are two general types of people in this training group. Type As are determined enough to work through physical pain, strong enough to tank the damage and keep pushing forward anyway, or clever enough to make their way past several instructors to reach the bell.

Type Bs are easily intimidated by pain, shy away from conflict, and will meekly obey an oppressor if it means they avoid greater suffering.

Having compared Type As and Type Bs, who do you think are more likely to quit the program? And who do you think would make for better soldiers?

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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 09 Sep 2011 23:53

Ah, I kinda figured you had someone in mind the way you were talking!
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby SandRider » 10 Sep 2011 13:49

SandChigger wrote:
lukecash12 wrote:Sardaukar were just people picked out to go live on a prison planet

Stupid oversimplification. :roll:


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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Setzer » 10 Sep 2011 19:05

lukecash12 wrote:
:lol: If you've got your math right then yeah, Fremen were scary as all bloody hell.


Look at the planet they lived on, and the history of their people. Sardaukar were just people picked out to go live on a prison planet, and the emperor was at the head of a cult of personality. Paul's fremen were people who would consider me and you "water-rich", and we would consider them like someone who got out of a concentration camp after a short stay there, what with their water scarce bodies. Lean, mean, killing machines.


Fremen do not look like death camp inmates. There's a difference between fat and water fat. You could probably find a hulking bodybuilder who would count as water fat by Fremen standards, without being traditionally obese.

People sent to Salusa Secundus aren't just prisoners. It's not like you spend a year on Salusa Secundus for contempt of court, or a few weeks for bouncing a check. The absolute worst, most violent, most brutal scum of the universe are sent to Salusa Secundus. The murderers, the rapists, the most determined thieves, etc. They're put through an environment that kills just over half of all newcomers. Those who survive are given the very best of military training, and outfitted with all the wealth that House Corrino has at its disposal.

However, the downside of this huge death rate is that you have a smaller pool of trainees to draw on for service. Of course, Duniverse armies are very small by our standards, being limited by the Great Convention and the cost of Guild transportation. Something most people seem to miss, is that the Fremen didn't have the high death rate of Sardaukar recruits. So despite living on a planet far worse then Salusa Secundus, far more of them survived to adulthood.

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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby lukecash12 » 11 Sep 2011 19:39

SandChigger wrote:
lukecash12 wrote:Sardaukar were just people picked out to go live on a prison planet

Stupid oversimplification. :roll:


And you can credit the sublime Padishah Emperor for oversimplifying it. The Fremen had Fremen parental guardians and a Fremen society, while the Sardaukar, so far as we know, were just first generation members of a group over and over. There was no domestic element for the Sardaukar. And the Sardaukar got nice pensions after training, while the Fremen stayed water scarce and completely dependent on the tribe and it's necessary violence rituals. The Sardaukar weakened because they were a cult of personality that wasn't tended to properly by their patron personality, while the Fremen valued water (life) so much that many of them rebelled against the cult of personality when water (life) became no longer sacred. The water came in abundance and began to undercut their sacrament fatalism, so they rebelled, while the Sardaukar were perfectly copacetic about receiving ease of life and losing some of their fatalism.
Last edited by lukecash12 on 11 Sep 2011 19:44, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby lukecash12 » 11 Sep 2011 19:40

Setzer wrote:
lukecash12 wrote:
:lol: If you've got your math right then yeah, Fremen were scary as all bloody hell.


Look at the planet they lived on, and the history of their people. Sardaukar were just people picked out to go live on a prison planet, and the emperor was at the head of a cult of personality. Paul's fremen were people who would consider me and you "water-rich", and we would consider them like someone who got out of a concentration camp after a short stay there, what with their water scarce bodies. Lean, mean, killing machines.


Fremen do not look like death camp inmates. There's a difference between fat and water fat. You could probably find a hulking bodybuilder who would count as water fat by Fremen standards, without being traditionally obese.

People sent to Salusa Secundus aren't just prisoners. It's not like you spend a year on Salusa Secundus for contempt of court, or a few weeks for bouncing a check. The absolute worst, most violent, most brutal scum of the universe are sent to Salusa Secundus. The murderers, the rapists, the most determined thieves, etc. They're put through an environment that kills just over half of all newcomers. Those who survive are given the very best of military training, and outfitted with all the wealth that House Corrino has at its disposal.

However, the downside of this huge death rate is that you have a smaller pool of trainees to draw on for service. Of course, Duniverse armies are very small by our standards, being limited by the Great Convention and the cost of Guild transportation. Something most people seem to miss, is that the Fremen didn't have the high death rate of Sardaukar recruits. So despite living on a planet far worse then Salusa Secundus, far more of them survived to adulthood.


It's not so clear, at least to me, that the Sardaukar were criminals sent to Salusa Secundus.
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Setzer » 11 Sep 2011 19:54

Yes, but there are criminals and there are criminals. People sent to Salusa Secundus aren't just petty criminals, they're the most vicious lawbreakers in the Imperium, the kind of guys that would have you reflectively covering your anus on sight.

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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby The Red Duke » 11 Sep 2011 20:16

lukecash12 wrote:It's not so clear, at least to me, that the Sardaukar were criminals sent to Salusa Secundus.


I know what you mean and I feel the same way. I always got the impression that the designation of Salusa Secundus as a prison world was a cover for what it actually was, that is a training/breeding ground for the Emperor's Sardaukar.
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Freakzilla » 11 Sep 2011 20:22

The Red Duke wrote:
lukecash12 wrote:It's not so clear, at least to me, that the Sardaukar were criminals sent to Salusa Secundus.


I know what you mean and I feel the same way. I always got the impression that the designation of Salusa Secundus as a prison world was a cover for what it actually was, that is a training/breeding ground for the Emperor's Sardaukar.


That's what I got too. It may have actually been a prison planet but that was just a front.
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby lukecash12 » 12 Sep 2011 02:16

Freakzilla wrote:
The Red Duke wrote:
lukecash12 wrote:It's not so clear, at least to me, that the Sardaukar were criminals sent to Salusa Secundus.


I know what you mean and I feel the same way. I always got the impression that the designation of Salusa Secundus as a prison world was a cover for what it actually was, that is a training/breeding ground for the Emperor's Sardaukar.


That's what I got too. It may have actually been a prison planet but that was just a front.


Precisely, because it's doubtful that a full grown adult who is a hardened criminal, could make for good material in a force as large and sophisticated as the Sardaukar. Considering the survival rate, the supposition that they were taken as children in large groups, would tend to make more sense. How else would the Emperor have a force feared by everyone in the Landsraad.
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby SandChigger » 12 Sep 2011 08:45

lukecash12 wrote:Considering the survival rate, the supposition that they were taken as children in large groups, would tend to make more sense.

Any textual support for that "supposition"? Or is it more a suppository you've pulled from your ass?

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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Freakzilla » 12 Sep 2011 09:30

(Around here it's a smart move to distinguish between what "you think" and what has an actual basis in the text, because you WILL be called on it.)
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Setzer » 12 Sep 2011 09:59

It's cheaper to train a full grown adult then it is to look after a child until he's old enough to bear arms. You can take an 18 year old and give him a few months training and you have a soldier. An 8 year old needs more time invested. If the Emperor just grabbed children and sent them to Salusa Secundus, he wouldn't have an army of feared warriors, he'd just have a Corps of corpses. Sure there are armies and rebel groups that use child soldiers today, but warfare on Earth relies heavily on weapons that wouldn't make it through shields. They also rely on machines and automation that would be banned by proscriptions of the Butlerian Jihad.

The prison planet front works because it's simple. No one questions why you're grabbing a bunch of vicious men and keeping them all in one safe place, because that's the entire point of a prison. No one questions why the nature of the place is kept secret, because, as the Baron put it "So he's not proud of some of the things he must do there." Meanwhile he has the supporting levies recruited from the Landsraad houses providing a plausible alibi for where the troops come from.

Sure the Emperor might have started colonies on Salusa Secundus to make sure the planet is populated, but there's a difference between a colony and a mere shipload of children.

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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby merkin muffley » 13 Sep 2011 10:48

The way Hawat talks about Selusa Secundus in Dune, when he says:
Dune wrote:the mortality rate among new prisoners is higher than sixty per cent

doesn't suggest that they're taking large groups of children to the planet.
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Setzer » 13 Sep 2011 11:41

No one questions too much if you take a murderer and haul him to some godforsaken rock to never be seen again. How are you going to get such a plausible alibi for children? There's simply no point in grabbing kids and training them to be soldiers when you won't see a return on their investment for about a decade. This is doubly true considering the high mortality rate.

EDIT: Also, I don't know if some of you have forgotten this, but adults are capable of making children. According to the Dune encyclopedia, the Sardau tribe was structured so only the most successful warriors got wives. If the prisoners are mostly male, it's easy to recreate that structure, ensuring only the best warriors get to reproduce.

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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Nekhrun » 13 Sep 2011 18:28

Setzer wrote:No one questions too much if you take a murderer and haul him to some godforsaken rock to never be seen again. How are you going to get such a plausible alibi for children?

I think you're forgetting that that's how the Jedi do it.
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Setzer » 13 Sep 2011 21:12

Nekhrun wrote:
Setzer wrote:No one questions too much if you take a murderer and haul him to some godforsaken rock to never be seen again. How are you going to get such a plausible alibi for children?

I think you're forgetting that that's how the Jedi do it.


The Jedi have knowledge of the Force, and the only teachers who can educate people about the Force. They can tell people "your child has a wondrous and special power, and only we can teach him how to control it." Furthermore, people may be sad to part with their children, but they have the consolation of knowing their sons or daughters will have opportunities they could never hope to give them. Put like that, parting with your children becomes easier.

Jedi in the Old Republic were seen as noble defenders of peace in the galaxy. The Sardaukar, OTOH, are the Emperor's pet mass murdering psychos and make sure everyone knows it.

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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby merkin muffley » 13 Sep 2011 22:57

Setzer wrote:EDIT: Also, I don't know if some of you have forgotten this, but adults are capable of making children.


Bonnie and Clyde were probably fucking each others' brains out on that planet.
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 14 Sep 2011 00:26

Setzer wrote:EDIT: Also, I don't know if some of you have forgotten this, but adults are capable of making children.


:lol: It's funny, that's what I was thinking but I didn't say anything - no need to drag endless children there which would obviously not go undetected - those convicts will have kids.
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Serkanner » 14 Sep 2011 03:56

Any mention of female Sardaukar anywhere?
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Freakzilla » 14 Sep 2011 06:55

Serkanner wrote:Any mention of female Sardaukar anywhere?


No
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Setzer » 14 Sep 2011 09:06

Is that such a surprise? The militaries of Dune seem to be male dominated until the Fish Speakers pop up.

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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Freakzilla » 14 Sep 2011 09:13

Maybe he's thinking of the breeding them on SS angle. Keep the females on SS to breed, kinda like the BT.
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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Setzer » 14 Sep 2011 09:18

Freakzilla wrote:Maybe he's thinking of the breeding them on SS angle. Keep the females on SS to breed, kinda like the BT.


According to the Dune Encyclopedia, that's how the Sardaukar women were treated. They were kept out of battle and made babies.

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Re: Sardaukar?

Postby Freakzilla » 14 Sep 2011 09:20

Setzer wrote:
Freakzilla wrote:Maybe he's thinking of the breeding them on SS angle. Keep the females on SS to breed, kinda like the BT.


According to the Dune Encyclopedia, that's how the Sardaukar women were treated. They were kept out of battle and made babies.


That's probably where I got the idea.
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