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11-03-2010 @ 7:15PM
Two things:First, why do the Kirin Tor bother to keep rebuilding Dalaran? The insurance premium must be insane.Second, why are Uther and Jaina still hailed as heroes? At Stratholme, they abandoned a city of innocent civilians to their fates and ran away rather than make a difficult decision. They didn't bother helping Arthas. They didn't bother trying to save the townspeople at all. They left Arthas to the Scourge's mercy--and left the townspeople to his.These are not qualities I would like in a leader. What happens the first time Jaina is forced to make a difficult decision regarding Theramore? Is she just going to run away so she can maintain her status as a "good person" and a "hero"?
11-03-2010 @ 7:26PM
No, she lets others kill her father.
11-03-2010 @ 7:28PM
Because Arthas would've have killed them both, or attempted to, if they tried to intervene. And Artgas stripped Uther of his power, so he couldn't command the army to stop Arthas and this few that went to purge Stratlholme.Also I wouldn't say the purging if Stratlholme was done because he was evil, he did it for a because he believed it was right, and itnay well have been, if he didn't purge Stratlholme then the Scourge would have gained a huge advantage in that region, and could've marched the Scourge if Stratlholne straight to Lordaeron.
11-03-2010 @ 7:33PM
Sorry but that's just one view of that event. To many of us, the fact that they stood up to Arthas that day WAS an act of heroism. Why the bronze flight retcon about this is that it had to happen, it's also an act that forever set Artha's feet on the road to evil. I think they both did the right thing there but I know there are those that disagree. Jaina is still the biggest hero we have in the Alliance, by my reckoning. /shrug :)
11-03-2010 @ 7:34PM
Well, first of all: the city is magical. It was made my mages. Recreating one wouldn't take much more than the wave of a hand from one of the higher members of the Kirin Tor.Second, Uther and Jaina made the harder choice. They walked the path least traveled upon. It was EASY for Arthas to go into Stratholme and slaughter all the citizens instead of trying to search for an alternate solution to the plague--but he didn't. They tried to save Stratholme, just in a, erm, more HUMANE way as opposed to mass GENOCIDE.Jaina has and does make very difficult decisions for her people--for freedom, the good fight. She had prevented whole-out war between various Horde and Alliance outposts. I'd call that fairly heroic.
11-03-2010 @ 7:40PM
The easy choice was to walk away and let someone else make the difficult decisions, which was what they did--as opposed to, at the very least, dealing with the Scourge occupying the city and using it as a mook factory.Arthas chose to strike as soon as possible, before the citizens bolstered the Scourge forces. Had he waited until they were undead--and therefore, I presume, morally okay to slaughter--his forces would have suffered more deaths than they did.Uther and Jaina didn't even try to help the townspeople. That they chose to walk away rather than defend those who needed defending--oh hey there Mr. Paladin--is proof of their cowardice.
11-03-2010 @ 7:56PM
They did choose to try and deal with the Scourge in their own way--but, again, just in a different manner (that being not mass genocide on a doomed people). Unfortunately for Jaina and Uther, they could not find a proper solution in such a short amount of time to the problem, as Arthas was simply had to charge in, do the bad deed, and finish it, leaving no chance for the duo to go about an alternate solution.Arthas didn't go with Jaina and Uther. He didn't turn around, he went on and just killed the townsfolk as they stood there, in Stratholme. Down to the last women, the last child, the last man. In the words of his lieutenants in the Halls of Reflection: "Men. Women. And CHILDREN. None were spared the master's wrath..."Again, while Jaina and Uther did leave Stratholme, they did so in disgust of Arthas and what he proposed (mass genocide). Jaina couldn't stand to watch Arthas kill so many people (it's genocide) and Uther wouldn't have it, either (genocide is bad, kids). They left to take care of the plague in a different way (not mass genocide). Arthas just got to the townsfolk too quickly--and, yes, committed mass genocide.
11-03-2010 @ 8:06PM
Eh. I admit my bias now by saying that I am a Horde through and through. That being said...Jaina, while being a powerful magic user, is essentially just a young girl. She was given three options: fight and possibly kill the man she might love, help him destroy a city of innocent people, or walk away. While admittedly more mature than most I can understand her decision. Since then she willingly didn't side with her father mindlessly against the Horde, instead choosing the more difficult path and letting her father die. Again, I admit my bias towards the Horde, but this says to me that she learned her lesson about hard choices and walking away.Uther, on the other hand, knew war. He knows death and destruction. He also is a PALADIN. His student is about to slaughter a town of people and he walks off. That is really pretty awful and honestly not a very great option for someone who was the first Knight of the Silver Hand. The right thing for Uther to do, not as a knight of the realm but as a Paladin of the Holy Light, is knock Arthas out, drag him back, and figure out what the bejeezus is wrong with the kid. I'm not sure how strong Arthas was as a Paladin but I'll bet not as strong as Uther, especially since the Prince was in the middle of one very bad fall. I mostly respect Uther, quite a bit actually, but this one act is a cheap and easy way out. Yes he winds up paying for it with his life which is really all he had left to give at this point but he, through inaction, allowed the Scourge to bring about an invasion by the Burning Legion, the defilement of the Sunwell, and the destruction of the World Tree.Between Jaina and Uther they should have had no problem disabling Arthas until someone could find a better way. Yes, the army might have gotten more demoralized than it already was but walking away didn't work so well for that either. Personally I hold the first official Paladin, leader of the Knights of the Silver Hand, and all around good guy a lot more responsible than the little girl who finally grew up afterward.PS Right up until the Kirin Tor moved Dalaran up to Northrend I would have said it had a mystical significance where it was and could not be moved. Now...I guess mages just incinerate any insurance people who come to call. Or turn them into sheep. Who knows?
11-03-2010 @ 8:37PM
The comment on Uther is fairly curious. As Arthas puts it, by the soverignty of his crown that he relieves Uther and his Paladins from service.Uther could very well have believed that Arthas had the power to take away the Light from him and his men--although his concept, is, of course, completely ludicrous. As has been shown on other accounts, the Light is proportionate in the weilders belief in their ability to use it. The Light is not a tangible thing you can take from a person, although I certainly wouldn't put it past Uther to think this was the very case. After all, the Light was a fairly new concept, him being one of the first Paladins--EVER.It does seem out-of-character for Uther to not have directly tried to stop Arthas, although I could see why that would have been a problem for him--both the faith conflict, and also the fact that Arthas was a close friend of him... coupled with various other factors I'm sure I'm forgetting.Warcraft, is, of course, a changing world, with changing characters in an ever-changing environment. I wouldn't call it far-fetched to think Uther just had a lapse in judgment (pun not intended).
11-03-2010 @ 11:47PM
It takes more courage to stand up in the face of death and defy it than waggle your finger, say "Oh, you bad boy!" and turn tail and flee. An orc would have stood to his (inevitable) death and faced Arthas dwn./shrug
11-04-2010 @ 12:49AM
In all of Jaina's studying, she never came across a variant of the "Evil triumphs when good men do nothing" idea. Uther just has a weird sliding scale of morality, in which letting one Orc live is grounds for imprisonment, followed by exile, but slaughtering a town is fine if he doesn't have to watch.
11-08-2010 @ 11:19PM
I think that both Jaina and Uther were unable to do anything at the point other than walk away. Jaina has pretty much no real political standing, and Uther just had his rights taken away. They couldn't really stand up to Arthas, as he had extremely loyal soldiers who were willing to kill innocent civilians on his behalf. In Jaina and Uther's point of view, they either had to fight their people by killing innocent, infected civilians, fight their people by killing loyal soldiers, or walk away. This is more of their moral choice, as uther is a Paladin and wants to protect the innocent, but he can't because the innocent would turn against him, and Jaina is just the kind of person who tries to save as much people as possible.
11-04-2010 @ 3:15AM
And how exactly could Jaina and Uther help to citizens of Stratholme, who was plagued?
11-04-2010 @ 6:37AM
Razion: while I agree with what you said, the department of redundancy department has asked me to point out that "mass genocide" is rather a silly tautology. The definition of genocide already implies a mass of victims.In fact, technically one could say "mass genocide" would only apply when you're committing multiple genocides - which Arthas wouldn't really aspire to for a while yet...:P
11-04-2010 @ 7:08AM
In my view both Jania and Uther are just as guilty of the slaughter as Arthas. They both were there, had a strong suspicion of what he was going to do, had legal, religious and command responsibility to those people in the town, but chose to abrogate those responsibilities and allow Arthas free reign. Their crimes are crimes of inaction. In the US there are crimes of inaction. For instance if you see someone drowning and do not attempt to help them (and they die), or if you block an ambulance's path (and someone dies as a result) you can be charged with manslaughter. Your inaction or carelessness directly resulted or materially contributed to the death of someone. This is very much the type of argument used to prosecute Charlie Manson, who never raised a hand against anyone he /caused/ to be killed. While I can cut Jaina some slack, there is no reason Uther should have walked away. Putting entirely aside his religious obligations as a Paladin, he had a military obligation. There are rules to warfare and the treatment of civilians in war- and peacetime. If an officer suggests killing a civilian for no good reason, you are obliged to remind them of the UCMJ and the current rules of land warfare. If they do indeed directly kill a civilian (non-uniformed non-combatant) who is not posing an immediate threat or immediately contributing materially to an ongoing threat/engagement, it is your responsibility to relieve them of their weapon and keep them under confinement. Now, those are the rules that are agreed on in a nice office far away from the actual battlefield. Things happen - you have to use your best judgment on what to do when. At the time though, Arthas pretty much stated 'I really want to do this', both Jaina and Uther disagreed, Arthas pulled rank in some odd fashion (by his FUTURE right as king... i.e. he didn't have the authority at the time), and they both allowed him to do it. There was no immediate threat, no battle, no confusion. Their knowing and willing indifference was tacit approval - they were his accomplices. Their duty at that time was to protect those people. If that included forcibly disarming and arresting Arthas, then that is what they should have done; not walked away to leave them to their fate. Yes, yes. I know, it's a game (hey, we're talking about Undead and Paladins), but I found the whole thing very unrealistic. If Jaina and Uther weren't there and it was just Arthas and his subordinates, I could see that happening. I'm glad to see though that Jaina has moved from 'you should not, but I won't stop you' to 'you will not - and I won't let you' after the retaking of Undercity/Wrathgate event. As a character, she needs to grow some teeth and do a few things other than lecturing on proper behavior.
11-04-2010 @ 8:29AM
This conversation and the many points of view is testament to the story crafters @ Blizzard. Right vs. Wrong is always subjective. The Culling Of Stratholme is just that.
11-04-2010 @ 8:30AM
There's a few problems with the idea that Uther and Jaina could have somehow stopped Arthas.First off, killing Arthas would have done nothing. There were soldiers there that were loyal to him, and would have defended him. How many innocent men would have died in that fight? Uther and Jaina were saying Arthas didn’t have the right to decide who lives and who dies; how much hypocrisy would there be in their deciding to kill any soldier that would follow Arthas? Even if they’d have managed to kill Arthas, would that have changed anything? The soldiers had their orders; they may well have carried them out even without Arthas. Should Uther and Jaina have killed all of them? (Now, I know the inevitable comparison that’s going to be drawn is with Nazi soldiers following illegal and immoral orders. However, it’s important to note that the Nazi soldiers who were prosecuted were only those that followed orders that no reasonable person could accept as lawful. Arthas’ men don’t fit that criterion; they’d seen men, women and children turn into vicious monsters, and they knew that if Stratholme fell, thousands of innocent people in the surrounding area would die. If it’s possible for us, knowing all the facts, to still debate whether or not Arthas was doing what was necessary, it must be the case that his soldiers could have reasonably believed that they were doing what was necessary.)So, they couldn’t just kill him. What other options did they have? Jaina had no authority to command anyone. Antonidas sent her as an advisor; she couldn’t order anyone to stand down. The men had just seen Uther stripped of his rank; as Crown Prince, that was totally within Arthas’ power. To have followed Uther would have been treason. Even so, a handful of men DID commit treason by going with Uther; specifically, the other paladins. Now, Uther could have denied Arthas’ authority, and used the handful of men who followed him to try and stop Arthas. However, they’d have been hopelessly outnumbered; he could perhaps make such a sacrifice for himself, but could he really ask that of his men? Ask them to fight and kill their comrades-in-arms, knowing that they couldn’t win, and that the outcome would be the same? No, all Uther could do would be to lead those that would follow him back to regroup and keep them from dishonoring themselves in Stratholme.So, I think the idea that Uther or Jaina could have done something to stop Arthas is a bit of a stretch; at best, they could have made a pointless symbolic sacrifice that would have cost more innocent lives without changing anything. Instead, they tried to convince as many as would follow them to leave Arthas behind; under the circumstances, I think that was the best they could do.
11-04-2010 @ 12:30PM
The way I see Stratholme is that it was Uther's one big failure in life. Had Uther supported arthas' decision (which really was the best of a lot of bad choices), he may have been able to contain arthas' anger and prevented him from becoming the vindictive, evil person he eventually became.What Arthas did is no different than what heroes in movies do to save people from becoming zombies of their own. Examples would include Picard killing his own crew member after being infected by Borg nano probes in First Contact, and Mal killing that hanger on before Reavers could change him in Serenity. They are merciful acts to spare people the pain and torture of an unholy existence. In both of those movies, other characters question the wisdom of killing someone instead of trying to save them. In both cases, the captain was right, and made the tough decision to go through with it.In the end, Uther failed not just Arthas, but all of Lordaeron and Azeroth with his decision to contradict Arthas at Stratholme. He was a great paladin that made a terrible mistake by being not supporting that very difficult decision.
11-05-2010 @ 3:32AM
The way the lore portrays it, there is no genocide or murder in Stratholme. They were already dead, they just didn't know it yet. I'm a loud and proud Nelf and soon-to-be Worgen :), but Jaina and Uther abandoned Arthas. Was it easy or fun for Arthas, no, but was it necessary, yes. Even the Bronze dragons say as much. The real change in Arthas was what the other two did in leaving. Stratholme didn't change him because of the killing the proto-zombies (even if some were temporarily young or female), but because his closest friends and allies, his mentor and his sweetheart (kinda), were unwilling to find a better way to really help Arthas. You may not emotionally like what Arthas had to do, but that does not make it any less necessary. It certainly does not make it wrong.On another note, it seems to me that Uther and Jaina were cast as heroes before the Culling was ever conceived; even in Vanilla they have always had that aura about them. This event is perhaps the only (so far as I know) testimony from their past that would besmirch that aura. While I find their abandonment reprehensible I also realize this is an event that happened long ago, and while Uther did not live too much longer, it is obvious that this created a scar upon the person and psyche of Jaina that exists today. Look at the Battle for Undercity. Instead of running away, she takes action. While I would not mind seeing the Horde taken down a peg or two :), I realize that Thrall is probably our best hope for a future where both factions are moving toward peace. She learned from her mistakes and grew to be a better person. That is why I can still consider her a hero.
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