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Fanon:Rangyi Rebellion

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Earth Kingdom emblem
By Hiroakira Fengxian Part of the Fushichō: Saga of the Five Gods continuity.
Rangyii Rebellion

Previous

Siege of Ba Sing Se

Concurrent

The War

Next

Harmony Restoration Movement

Conflict

The War

Date

95 AG - 98 AG

Place

Western Earth Kingdom

Outcome

  • Fire Nation Victory
  • Rangyi Movement defeated
  • Firelord Ozai solidifies his hold on power, and increases military size
  • Harsher punishments for rebellion enacted
  • Fire Nation Military free to resume offensive
  • Fong promoted to General
  • Zhao promoted to Commander
  • Shinu promoted to Colonel
  • End of major rebellions in occupied territory until the Avatar's return
  • Ba Sing Se withdraws all military and financial support from it's territories
  • Chief Hakoda and the warriors of the Southern Water Tribe join the War in the Earth Kingdom

Combatants

Earth Kingdom under the Rangyi Movement

Fire Nation

Commanders

  • General Targutai†

Colonel Fong

Forces involved

Casualties

  • Very heavy: Large numbers of Earth Kingdom nobles and officers killed or captured
  • Partial destruction of Senlin Forest

Heavy: Large loss of life in Fire Nation Colonies and Fire Nation Military


[Source]

The Rangyi Rebellion, also known as the Rangyi Movement and the Colony Rebellions, were a series of violent uprisings in the Western Earth Kingdom against the Fire Nation occupation late in The War. Rangyi, which means "Expel the foreigners/barbarians/invaders!" was the battle cry of the rebels, and soon became the unofficial title of the brutal revanchist movement led by General Targutai, who absorbed the various rebel factions into a massive army big enough to challenge even the Fire Nation's formidable military. The Rebellion is primarily noted for the acts of sheer ruthlessness and brutality on both sides of the conflict(including the indiscriminate slaughter of Fire Nation colonists), and for being the first time since the reign of Fire Lord Sozin that the Fire Nation's hold on its conquered territories was in serious jeopardy. Lasting for nearly four years, the Rangyi Movement seemed poised to finally reclaim the Earth Kingdom, until the disastrous First Battle of Senlin Forest cost the Rangyi not only their leader, General Targutai, but also a sizable portion of their more professional army. Under the leadership and the new reforms of Fire Lord Ozai, the remaining Rangyi Rebels that continued to resist were wiped out by 99 AG, ending hope for many that the Fire Nation could be stopped. This was to be the last serious threat to Fire Nation supremacy until the return of Avatar Aang in 100 AG.

Prelude

The Dragon of the West Fails

Final victory loomed for the Fire Nation in 93 AG when General Iroh began his infamous 600-day siege on the Earth Kingdom Capital of Ba Sing Se, eventually breaking through the Outer Wall in 95 AG. Unfortunately, Iroh's only son, prince Lu Ten, was killed in battle, causing Iroh to lose heart and call off the siege in despair. Word spread of Ba Sing Se's "glorious victory" over the legendary Dragon of the West, inspiring Earth Kingdom citizens living under Fire Nation rule to rise up against their oppressors.

Regime Change

A few weeks after the Siege of Ba Sing Se ended, Fire Lord Azulon died in his sleep at the age of 95. Instead of Azulon's first-born son Iroh however, his second-born son Prince Ozai inherited the throne, allegedly as per Azulon's dying request. Word spread, and there were those in not only the Fire Nation, but also the Earth Kingdom that doubted Ozai's capability as a leader. It was no secret that Iroh had been Azulon's favored son: first-born, named for his mother, a master Firebender with the title of Dragon, and the military's star general for years. Ozai on the other hand had never served in the military, and had spent most of his youth fruitlessly searching the world for the long-lost Avatar. With his record consisting of a wild goose chase and no battlefield experience, there were those in the Earth Kingdom that viewed Ozai's ascension as the perfect opportunity to strike.

Early Stages

The first noteworthy sign of insurgency came in the form of an attack of a Fire Nation railroad construction site in the southwest led by General Targutai, which freed an entire slave labor camp. When the local Fire Nation magistrate failed to adequately deal with the attack, the emboldened Targutai began to raid the supply lines of the local Fire Army base, ambushing any soldiers that came to investigate. When Fire Nation soldiers began to raid nearby Earth Kingdom villages for food, they too would be ambushed by overwhelming numbers of Targutai's troops disguised as civilians. The effectiveness of this strategy allowed Targutai to launch a full-scale assault on the weakened Fire Army base, where they succeeded in razing it to the ground. With this victory under his belt Targutai began rallying subjugated Earth Kingdom citizens to his banner, promising a future where they would be free of the Fire Nation and it's influence. Targutai's charismatic persona (and his talent for milking his military successes for every bit of PR he could get) inspired a deep sense of cultural pride and nationalism in all who heard him, as well as igniting a sense of injustice and resentment toward the Fire Nation's oppression. Targutai chose a name for his vision: Rangyi, which translates into "Expel the foreign devils!". Volunteers flocked to Targutai's banner in droves, and soon the newly-christened Rangyi Army had thousands to command. The Fire Nation Military, deciding to concentrate their field armies on what they considered more important targets in the east, casually dismissed the Rangyi as a mere rabble to be dealt with by the provincial Colonial Force, and failed to properly respond to the situation until it completely got out of hand.

All throughout the Western Earth Kingdom, uprisings began to occur against Fire Nation dominion, as Rangyi insurgents began to raid not only the supply convoys of the Fire Nation Military, but also civilian traders as well if they were aligned with the Fire Nation. Fire Nation Patrols found themselves harassed, ambushed, and oftentimes hopelessly outnumbered. Soon, attacks against both military and civilian targets began to occur within the outlying Fire colonies themselves. Eventually, groups of bandits both large and small began to claim to be part of the Rangyi Army, mainly to provide the illusion of legitimacy as they stepped up their raids. The Fire Nation Governors had had enough, and sent in the military to deal with the problem the traditional Fire Nation way: terror. Colonel Mongke was sent to make an example of a small Earth Kingdom village that displayed strong Rangyi sympathies, a small town called Cūnzhang, which Mongke and his Rough Rhinos burned to the ground. The "Massacare of Cūnzhang" proved to be far from a deterrent however, as Targutai used it as an example as to why the Fire Nation had to be erased from the Earth Kingdom "by any and all means necessary"

Things Turn Bloody

Trivia

  • The Rangyi Uprising is partly based on the Yellow Scarf Rebellion at the end of China's Han Dynasty, in which a number of bandit groups dressed as members of the Yellow Scarf army as a cover for their merciless attacks on civilian towns.
  • Lt. Colonel Fong was promoted to full General after surviving the fall of the Rangyi as everyone immediately above him had either been captured or killed. His lingering hatred of the Fire Nation and his fear regarding Hiroakira Fengxian is what eventually led him to try to provoke Aang into the Avatar State.
  • Zhao's taking full credit for the victory at the Battle of Senlin Forest, and his participation in cleaning up the remains of the Rangyi Army, is what got him promoted from Captain to Commander.
  • The Fire Nation's use of supply and troop trains and it's better communication's network to defeat the Rangyi is similar to U.S. President Abraham Lincoln's strategy in defeating the Confedrecy during the American Civil War. The Rangyi Army and their initial early successes are also partly based on the Confederate Army.

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