The Mesan Alignment was a covert organization whose main goal was the purposeful improvement of the human species though genetic manipulation. It used the Mesan government, Manpower Incorporated, and assorted other organizations as fronts for its activities, ultimately intended to giving it control over humanity.
The Alignment developed from geneticist Leonard Detweiler's decision to abandon his native Beowulf (due to opposition to his policies) and establish a settlement on the planet Mesa. His plans included genetic research on human beings and continued improvements (in the judgment of Detweiler, his associates, and successors) of humans by active interference in their breeding. It came to include a variety of businesses, most notably Manpower Incorporated (formerly the Detweiler Consortium), which dealt in human slaves, and assorted other companies, and even the Mesan government. The development of a long range plan to destroy the rest of the polities in the human settled part of the Galaxy came later.
The Alignment's goal was the improvement of humanity's genetics. It hid the ongoing pursuit of this goal in Manpower's research and development programs, under the guise of surface improvements in physical characteristics (beauty, strength, endurance, etc.) relevant to the genetic slave market. There was little concern for the legality or acceptability in any ethical sense of the tactics used. Bribery, blackmail, espionage, murder, kidnapping, and so on were common. Detweiler's own line came to an end, thus leading the rest of the Galaxy (perhaps most notably Beowulf, whose opposition to Detweiler's policies and goals had been intense) to conclude that Mesa and the corporations headquartered there had drifted from Detweiler's goals and developed into a merely criminal collection of corporate thugs. At least for public consumption, that was, as the Detweiler line had not actually become extinct, and in fact remained in control of both tactics and strategy of the covert leadership of Mesa.
Mesa's population came to be classified in several ways, some covert, and some overt. Overtly, some Mesan residents were slaves, some were second class citizens descended from slaves, and some were full citizens. Covertly, at least for public consumption, the citizenry was classified as alpha (the most highly advanced genotypes), beta (less highly developed), gamma, etc. Within the citizenry, some were fully within the conspiracy as it developed over the centuries (in Alignment terms fully within "the onion"), some believed they understood the nature of Mesa and its corporations but were actually only partly knowledgeable, and some believed the public story that Mesa was a cooperative pack of corporate criminals engaging in whatever was necessary, however repugnant to non-Mesans, to support maximum profits. The Detweiler line was the most improved of all the Alpha bloodlines. (SI2)
Over time, the Alignment created a long-term political plan to destabilize the Solarian League and replace it with a new polity under its own control, which was to be initially named the Renaissance Factor. (HH12)
The Alignment had originally considered the Republic of Haven to be the largest threat to its plans (both public and covert) in the Haven Quadrant, due to its egalitarian polices and abhorrence of slavery. Its success as a colony and as a model polity was alarming, as was its serious commitment to the Cherwell Convention. As a result, the Alignment (aided as possible by overt and covert actions by Manpower and others) focused on the destabilization of Haven, helping malign developments such as the Legislaturalist aristocratic dictatorship and an economic and social devolution, leading to the expansionist DuQuesne Plan.
What the Alignment had not anticipated in its strategies was that a star nation as small as the Star Kingdom of Manticore would not only actively resist attempts by Haven to conquer it, but would actually push back in a way resulting not only in the collapse of the People's Republic and its successor regime under the Committee of Public Safety, leading to the restoration of the original Constitution of the Republic of Haven, massive growth of both nations' military forces during a cease fire, and the transformation of the Star Kingdom into the Star Empire of Manticore via annexations (voluntary in much of the Talbott Cluster near the newly discovered Lynx Terminus of the Manticore Wormhole Junction, and involuntary in the former Silesian Confederacy).
The discovery of the Lynx Terminus also meant that the Star Empire had come to control regular merchant traffic around two-thirds of the periphery of the Solarian League; routing through the Manticore Junction allowed merchant ships easier and quicker access to most of the League than did any other. It also allowed the Star Empire's naval forces much readier access to new territories, previously well outside the Star Empire's reach, including Mesa itself. (SI1, SI2)
Because of this rising threat, the Alignment planned and executed Operation Oyster Bay, a covert attack on the Manticoran Alliance home systems in which ships equipped with the revolutionary and near-undetectable spider drive entered the Manticore and Yeltsin's Star System, and destroyed all the most important Manticoran Alliance fleet shipyards in these systems. (HH12)
Later in early 1923 PD, the Alignment executed the Beowulf Strike, a covert attack with smuggled-in nuclear charges that destroyed the Republic of Beowulf's main orbital habitats, killing millions. This was supposed to be covered up by a concurrent Solarian Navy attack, but bad timing caused the truth to be discovered. (HH14)
Unknown to the Audubon Ballroom, the Alignment had actually profited from the Ballroom's zeal in targeting Manpower Inc. employees. By keeping the attention of the Galaxy focused on genetic slavery and the greed and criminality associated with it, the Alignment was able to hide its goals, strategy, tactics, and methods with regard to both its genetic ambitions for all of humanity and its political and military activities. (SI2)
The Alignment even used specifically designed "fake slaves", Mesan agents with a slave ID barcode engineered into their tongues, to infiltrate the Ballroom and the entire slave community. (CS2)
Alignment leadership (Mesa)
As of about 1920 PD, the highest level direction of Alignment strategy and tactics was handled on Mesa by the following group, with the Detweiler family being supreme.
- Detweiler family:
- Albrecht — the highest authority within the Alignment
- Benjamin — Albrecht Detweiler's 'son', director of military affairs
- Collin — Albrecht Detweiler's 'son', director of intelligence operations
- Daniel — Albrecht Detweiler's 'son', director of nongenetic R&D
- Evelina — Albrecht Detweiler's wife, a senior genetic researcher
- Everett — Albrecht Detweiler's 'son', director of genetic R&D
- Franklin — Albrecht Detweiler's 'son', director of political strategy
- Gervais — Albrecht Detweiler's 'son', director of foreign affairs
- Aldona Anisimovna — a senior operative (Manpower Inc. Strategy Committee member, but not given knowledge of the inner workings of Alignment strategy until after the Battle of Monica)
- Isabel Bardasano — senior intelligence specialist, and member of the inner conspiracy before the Battle of Monica (officially, a Jessyk Combine cadet board member)
- Anastasia Chernevsky — head of naval research and development (SI2)
Alignment Leadership (non-Mesa)
Off Mesa, Alignment operations (entirely covert until the launch of Operation Oyster Bay and to a great extent afterward as well) were largely handled by various agents. Some were individuals operating alone (e.g., as journalists), some covert sleeper agents, some members of covert multi-generational sleeper families. In the last class were the following, each a public leader of a planet or system which had been (covertly) long planned to become aspects of the Renaissance Factor after the disintegration and dissolution of the Solarian League: (HH12)
- King Clinton III – Kingdom of New Madagascar, Oceana System
- Chancellor Walter Ford – Second Chance Republic, Matagorda System
- President Roman Hitchcock – Visigoth System
- President Stanley Hurskainen – Republic of Mannerheim
- Chief Counsel Nikomedes Kakadelis – Democratic Republic of Thrace
- Board Chairman Joan Kubrick – Maxwell Association, Maxwell System
- System President Anton Polanski – Line System
- President Rebecca Monticelli – Republic of Comstock
- Marquis Reynaldo IV – Marquisate of Denver
- Director Vincent Stone – Directorate of New Orkney
- Chancellor Robert Tarantino – Republic of New Bombay
- See Also: Mesan Naval Affairs
The Alignment's military resources were initially entirely covert in the sense that they were either unknown to the whole Galaxy or known to the Galaxy but not known to be part of the Alignment military.
Thus, the eleven polities of the Renaissance Factor (see above), of which the Mannerheim System-Defense Force was the largest prior to the execution of Operation Oyster Bay. In general, its officers and crews were unaware of their intended role in support of the Alignment, or indeed of any connection with Mesa of any kind.
- Main Article: Mesan Alignment Navy
The secret branch of the Alignment military was the Mesan Alignment Navy, or MAN, whose existence was unknown to anyone in the Galaxy save the population of the Darius System where the Navy's ships were designed and built, MAN personnel, and the leadership of the Alignment. Until the execution of Oyster Bay, its existence was unsuspected by anyone else in the Galaxy. It was completely separate and independent of the Mesan Space Navy, a relatively small conventionally armed and publicly known force. The MAN's warships were of special design, using new technologies such as the spider drive and the streak drive. (CS2, HH12)