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On Janos Slynt

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3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

 

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

 

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Don't you understand the difference there? Legally, Melisandre is no one. She doesn't hold lands, titles, or crowns. She is nothing in the legal sphere. Jon Snow is the Lord Commander of the Night's Watch and Mance entered his service after Stannis gave him to Jon. Melisandre is, in a sense, also Jon's woman. She remained at the Wall to advise Jon. She is also Stannis' woman, of course, but she works with and for Jon, not against him, just as Stannis does.

Jon doesn't hold any lands, titles, or crowns either. I have said several times Mance was under Jon's jurisdiction but whatever you want to call him he is NOT the same as the brothers of the NW & Melisandre holds influence over him. Whether you believe that or not doesn't matter because clearly Mance believes it. Power lies where people think it lies & to pretend Mel has no power over Mance but Jon holds ultimate power over both of them is ignoring the story & the text we are given.

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

That's just wrong. Jon takes men into his service who do not take the black. All the wildlings for instance, who become Jon's responsibility (i.e. his men) after Stannis leaves the Wall. It was the price for Jon's help in the Deepwood issue

It isn't wrong. Yes he takes men into his service. King's men, Queens men, Wildlings but they remain King's men, Queens men, & Wildlings & while Jon has some power over them that power is not all encompassing like it is with the members of the NW. 

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Those are then all Jon's men and are rightfully seen as such by other parties. What you are doing here is pretend some guy doing stuff for Beric Dondarrion in the Riverlands isn't his man because he is not formally sworn to him. Which would just be nonsense.

No, actually this is what you are doing - pretending Mance isn't Mel's man because he isn't formally sworn to her, which I agree is nonsense. 

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Mance's case we even have some sort of feudal obligation established - Mance himself tells us that he would do whatever Jon commanded him to do aside from wearing black

Yes he would do what was asked EXCEPT that which would be required of him in order for Jon to have total command over him. 

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Stannis might do what Mel advises, but he is not her man because she has only informal power

What difference does it make if the power is formal or informal? She holds power over him, as she does Mance. 

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

And it is quite clear that the ruby is just the glamor. We see in Mel's own chapter that she can neither read Mance's thoughts nor control him directly in any way

No, actually quite the opposite. We can be fairly certain the Ruby has nothing to do with the glamour as Mel glamours the real Rattleshirt to look like Mance & there is no evidence of him wearing any ruby. No one has suggested that the ruby allows her to read his thoughts. We don't really know what it does other than it binds him to her in some manner. There is no reason to think Mel is lying & we have evidence that says the ruby is not for the glamour independent of Mel saying so.

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

think it is very likely that Jon was not stupid enough to believe Mance would just pick up a girl on the road

Why would that make him stupid? And why would we be given evidence to the contrary? Unless you can come up with a reasonable, logical, answer for that I can't agree with it. 

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

But if it this were the case it is quite clear that Jon is responsible for everything Mance did at KL

So, if Jon didn't know then he isn't responsible for what Mance did at WF? 

Jon holds some weight here, I've said that. That doesn't mean every action of Mance's are Jon's responsibility or to be blamed on Jon. Furthermore, I don't think Mance's actions need blamed on anyone. He didn't do anything wrong in WF. 

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Frey would weasel out of his responsibility with legal prattle. A Stark would eat the meal he cooked for himself and praise the poison

I am neither Frey or Stark & neither are you. Regardless of what the character may feel we can understand that while a Frey may not take responsibility for something that is their fault & a Stark may take responsibility for something that isn't, that doesn't mean the Frey isn't to blame anymore than it means the Stark is. 

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Not in this context. Jon unleashed one of his vassals/sworn men and had them infiltrate another man's cause, abducting the lady of said castle and murdering a bunch of people in the process of that

No he didn't. 

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

What Ramsay is has nothing to do with any of that - not to mention that Jon essentially knows nothing about Ramsay but rumors. His knowledge does not justify what he authorizes Mance to do

What Ramsay is & does has everything to do with it. Ramsay is only Lord of WF on false pretenses & doesn't truly hold any power. He only has influence because people think he is Lord of WF. IIrc Ramsay has already sent Jon a letter written in blood with skin inside so it's more than rumours. Ramsay himself says he is flaying the spearwives. What Ramsay is puts Jon on the side of righteousness. 

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you want to create a scenario where anyone would interpret Mance as an independent operative not acting in Jon Snow's name you have to change the rules of Westerosi feudal society

I don't want to create a scenario where Mance is acting independently - he clearly is not. He is acting upon Melisandre's wishes, Jon's allowance, & his own will. 3 people were involved in this scheme & to lay it all at the feet of one - the one with the least to do with it - is ridiculous. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

He gave a Caesar-like speech, admitting to his crimes by reading the letter, making it clear he didn't give a damn and manipulating people into joining him by creating a scenario where he would march alone against the enemy if nobody joined him

Admitted to what crimes?! Even if he can be accused of lying about Mance - a charge that is shaky at best - it is no crime to lie. He made the opposite clear actually. That he does care about his black brothers that's why he doesn't ask them to March with him, that he cares about the Wildlings that's why he is sending men to HH, that he cares about innocent people that's why he is riding to WF. 

And the crowd roars in response to the PL before Jon says anything about marching alone so, no he isn't trying to manipulate them with that - he didn't need to. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

He makes that clear in his thoughts when he admits he no longer leads Marsh and the gang because he now has the wildlings

I have no idea where you are getting this from. Is there a specific passage or quote that you believe makes this clear? 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

There are no malicious actions there, just illegal actions that actually give the Boltons the right to strike back at him. Ramsay is justified to write the Pink Letter - perhaps his threats are a bit too much but his demands are not

There is nothing illegal about Jon allowing Mance to go to WF but what certainly is illegal is the means by which Ramsay has obtained WF. So by your logic Mance has every right to do what he did & so does Jon. 

His demands are not too much? Are you serious? He is asking for 4 women & a little girl besides Jon's head. Since when is this a normal demand? 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Jon had refused to allow Mance to leave CB he would have stayed there - or he would have to sneak away in the night and be hunted down like the deserter that he is. He gave Mance permission to go, hence the Boltons have every right to blame Jon for Mance's actions. He threw the first stone

Yes Mance would have stayed if Jon said he didn't want him to go but not because he must follow Jon's orders, because the goal is to get Jon to trust Mel - something that will not be accomplished if Jon disagrees with what they are doing. Secondly there is not one single reason for Jon to deny Mance going. 

The Bolton's threw the first stone by obtaining WF illegally. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Ramsay has no way of knowing that, nor has anyone at CB.

So?

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

But one certainly assumes that he would also free Mance were he still alive when he took Winterfell, no? And the wildlings assembled likely care much more about Mance than, you know, kill some guy they don't know

Again, so? I would certainly hope he would at least try to free Mance if he is alive when got to WF. He'd be a pretty big arse if he didn't. 

I don't see what difference it makes what the wildlings care more about either. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

is clear what Jon is responsible for by the rules of the society he lives in. There is no reason to free Jon from his responsibility by pointing at Mel, Mance, or anybody but Jon

This isn't true & even if it were it doesn't equate to Nevets having no grace or whatever you said. 

Mel tells Mance to go

Jon allows it

Mance goes & follows through with a plan that was not the original or at least not what was told to Jon. 

3 people. 3. Not 1. Not only Jon. Jon, Mel, & Mance. There is every reason to place this at their feet. All 3 of them. They all played a role here. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Jon as Lord Commander of the NW has no right to involve himself in the affairs of the Seven Kingdoms

And he doesn't. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

think if Jon deserved as many second chances as he got Slynt would also have deserved another

I disagree. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

man who cares about justice wouldn't have executed Mance

What? 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Allowing Mance to go endangered the Watch. The Boltons now have a right to reataliate and if Ramsay told the truth they are all dead if they resist. The wildlings and NW would never stand a chance against the Boltons. Not if they crushed Stannis

No it didn't. The Bolton's have no right because there power derives from an illegal action. If Ramsay told the truth he wouldn't remain Lord of WF very long. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

But there is no clear right or wrong in this series. That's the entire point of characters being in various moral conflicts.

Sometimes there is no clear right or wrong but it can never be right to torture & maim people, steal a title under illegal & false pretenses, rape & murder at will. 

I don't understand how you can say this when you are painting Jon's actions as wrong when there is clearly moral conflicts. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Risking the lives of essentially mankind for Arya is not the right thing. And it was mankind which was at stake if Jon were crucial in the fight against the Others but might get himself killed by the Boltons before they made their move. Even if mankind would survive it it definitely endangered all the men under his command.

No, he was willing to risk his own life to answer Ramsay's threats so that his threats didn't get carried out on the NW. Even in the NW a man has a right to defend himself. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Jon no longer has a right to favor his family after he has taken black - especially after he has become Lord Commander.

Right that's why he doesn't. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

With Arya the problem were that once the Boltons found out about that they might be unwilling to let this offense unanswered. They might decide to destroy the NW - meaning Jon would be indirectly responsible for a conflict that could get his men and institution destroyed. His duty is to stay out of the conflicts of the Seven Kingdoms, not participate in them.

That makes the Bolton's directly responsible. They were in the wrong. They took WF illegally, Ramsay mistreated several other human beings & when his play time got cut short he had a tantrum & threatened Jon & the NW. His duty is to protect the realm. Arya is a member of the realm whether she is his sister or not. Being his sister gives him all the more reason to do what he can for her. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

The Watch has no trouble with the wildlings whatsoever

Well someone should tell the members of the watch that then because they clearly think otherwise. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

There are wildlings named Alfyn Crowkiller - but there are no black brothers known as 'Wildlingkiller

Just because the Wildlings may have been better at killing crows than the crows were at killing the Wildlings doesn't mean they are any more or less at fault for the feuding. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

The NW existed for thousands of years and this system works just fine. There is no need to change any of their internal rules. The approach to the wildlings - sure. But not the rule to leave everything behind when you take the black

It clearly doesn't work just fine, the watch was dying. It was filled with criminals. Possibly more men would willingly take the black if there wasn't a rule to leave everything else behind. That seems like a pretty good reason to change it to me. The watch needs men, if the men can be obtained by changing the rules a little then it should be done to save the realm considering what they are facing. Maybe that rule was appropriate when the watch was only to guard the realm against the wildlings but not that the true purpose has been remembered they need every single body they can get regardless of their family or titles. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Mance was the wildling king. He assembled an army and marched against the Wall and actually tried to keep his plans as a secret for as long as possible. He found out about the Others and never bothered to inform his former brothers nor did he ever offer an alliance to anyone. I mean, you do recall that this guy was a fucking Winterfell, right? And did he do anything to inform Eddard Stark or Robert Baratheon of the danger they were all in? No, he did not

And what should he have done? We don't know exactly what he knew & he definitely didn't have any proof. Who, in their right mind, would have listened to one iota of what he said? You do recall he is Mance-fucking- Rayder right? His head would have been removed the moment he revealed himself & nothing would have been accomplished. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Mormont had no reason to reach out to Mance until the wight attack - and then he went on a ranging to find out what was going on

I would say if the Wildlings were as dangerous to the NW as you say Mormont had every reason to reach out for some sort of truce. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

You would be proud of breaking your vows, turning your back on your friends and leading a war against them???

Hmmm is that what I said? Or did I say I would be proud of being a good leader, smart, open minded etc? 

But if you want to know, hell yes I would be proud to know I was one of the few to rise up against a rigid, bigoted system. 

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11 hours ago, redriver said:

VOWS AND OATHS.

Some around here have missed entire themes that the author has made central to this story.This is one of them.

You can hurl abusive epithets at Mance."Turncloak,oathbreaker".

Same with Jaime. "Kingslayer, child murderer".

Just as with the Hound. "Child murderer,turncloak, coward"

Theon. "Kinslayer,turncloak,child killer".

And a favourite of our Lord Varys "Arya the serial killer".

Yes they may all be labelled such technically.But realistically these are characters in conflict with failed institutions with failed goals and intentions.

Frankly it amazes me that allegedly intelligent, and certainly prolific posters stick to black and white blanket labelling, when if nothing else Martin is thematically exploring and condemning issues of oath swearing and everlasting loyalty to people and institutions who themselves change from what you swore to.

Come on, now, don't try to weasel yourself out of this thing. Sure, George tries to put his characters into conflicts of the heart and morality and the heart and all that but - newsflash! - this doesn't mean institutions or vows are wrong.

Jon Snow and Jaime Lannister and, especially, Arya Stark were not forced to swear certain vows or kill certain people - they did so because they wanted to do that.

The idea to turn things around and blame unjust institutions for the problems and crimes certain people committed shows you got to involved in the topic/actions at hand. In the case of Jaime and Arya one then behaves like pen friend of some convicted murderer completely buying his side of the story.

What people usually don't seem to grasp in that kind of discussion is that I can like Arya despite the fact that she is/behaves like a serial killer. We understand why she does what she does but we should not be afraid to call that by the right name. If you can't do that you got too entangled by the character.

The only institution George has actually criticized by using his characters is monarchy (when Quentyn and his friends compare the Westerosi system to the triarchy system of Volantis). If the point of the story was to criticize people making solemn vows or join institutions they don't have to join then we would actually hear more about that. In fact, if there is one part of Westerosi society that is positve then it is the basic rules of their society - that you stick to a promise you made or a vow you swear, that you do not kill guests/hosts/people under your protection who cannot defend themselves, etc.

The idea that the likes of Jaime - who swore a solemn vow of chastity to be able to bang his sister! - was corrupted by an institution is insane. That never made any sense.

Mance is just a very selfish person. He was brought up by the Watch, swore their vows, and then betrayed them over a triviality. I very much understand why he did that because I'd never want to be part of as rigid an order as the NW - but guess what: nobody forced him to do it, just as nobody forced Jon Snow.

I have more understanding for Gared and Dareon (and would have for Pyp and Grenn if they ever broke their vows) than I'll ever have for Jon and Mance - because they were never forced to take the black. They did it of their own free will.

12 hours ago, divica said:

This again? How many quotes have people put here that jon authorized mance to help a girl ridding a dying horse near a lake?

He never authorized mance to infiltrate winterfel, or to abudct anyone and much less to kill someone. That was mance doing whatever he wants.

That's just nonsense. Even if Jon had no idea what Mance would do to get his sister to him, he is still responsible for him doing what he did because he sent him out. Mance is doing what he does for Jon Snow. He wants to save his sister, he wants to do him a favor. He doesn't do what he does without his knowledge.

12 hours ago, divica said:

Is robb responsable for jaime's cut hand? Is ballon responsable for theon taking winterfell and faking the starks deaths? Is Jaime responsable for tyrion killing tywin? Is ned responsable for beric creating the BwB?

Is Tywin Lannister responsible for the murder or Elia and the children? Is Tywin Lannister responsible for Gregor Clegane raiding the Riverlands?

If you do want to make analogies pick the right ones.

Balon is definitely responsible for the attack on Winterfell because it was his son and his people who did that. Nobody in Westeros would absolve Balon of his responsibility even if Theon publicly swore his father had had no knowledge of that. A feudal system makes the lord or king responsible for the deeds of his sworn men unless they give them up.

I mean, you read TSS, didn't you? Osgrey didn't cut that peasant - Bennis did. But since Osgrey continued to protect Bennis his crime became Osgrey's crime. Osgrey offered to pay a blood price to Lady Webber, not Bennis.

12 hours ago, divica said:

NO. People sometimes disobey orders and do whatever they want.

Nobody did give Mance an order not to infiltrate Winterfell, did they?

12 hours ago, divica said:

Admiting to what crimes?

To have sent Mance to Winterfell to abduct Lady Bolton. Or is there any indication Jon called Ramsay a liar after he had read the letter?

12 hours ago, divica said:

what? He does what? Seriously, please provide a quote.

That is a rather prominent part of the story:

Quote

The roar was all he could have hoped for, the tumult so loud that the two old shields tumbled from the walls. Soren Shieldbreaker was on his feet, the Wanderer as well. Toregg the Tall, Brogg, Harle the Huntsman and Harle the Handsome both, Ygon Oldfather, Blind Doss, even the Great Walrus. I have my swords, thought Jon Snow, and we are coming for you, Bastard.

Yarwyck and Marsh were slipping out, he saw, and all their men behind them. It made no matter. He did not need them now. He did not want them. No man can ever say I made my brothers break their vows. If this is oathbreaking, the crime is mine and mine alone. 

We have to count it in Jon's favor that he did not command any of the sworn brothers of the Night's Watch to help him in his oathbreaking, but there cannot be any doubt for any rational person that what Jon did was oathbreaking if it is consensus that what Dareon or Gared did was oathbreaking, too.

Ramsay Bolton did give Jon terms. He chose not to try to meet them, he used this as an excuse to declare war on him when they would have still been other possibilities.

12 hours ago, divica said:

Yeah… Because Ramsay has the right to decide who the LC allows to reside in CB and the gift. The LC obviously has to offer his guests as hostages to ramsay if he demands it… And if ramsay's bride arrived in CB the law clearly forbids the LC from letting her in and helping her...

Stannis and his family and attendants are a bunch of traitors. Making common cause with them makes you a traitor as well. The NW is no independent state, it is manned, funded, and fed by the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. If Stannis was crushed then Jon definitely should fulfill Ramsay's demands to save the Watch and himself. After all, he would stand no chance against a united North under Bolton rule if they crushed Stannis and all his Northmen in that seven day battle.

12 hours ago, divica said:

Jon judged slynt as one man under his orders that repeatdly refused to obey orders and insulted him in public.

Twice. He did refuse to obey an order twice. Jon deserted, tried to kill a superior officer over a remark said officer made not to Jon's face and broke his vows with Ygritte. If Slynt deserved death, Jon did, too.

12 hours ago, divica said:

Jon treats mance as the King of the wildlings and not a NW man. Therefore he can t apply the same standards to mance as he aplies to slynt. Even if you want to argue that mance is a turncloak and deserves to die his acomplishments give him a diferent standard. Besides the fact that jon is accepting all wildlings. It would be hypocritical for him to kill mance in these conditions.

LOL, that's exactly that lawyer's prattle that makes no sense. Mance is nothing but a deserter, turncloak, and murderer from the point of view of the Watch. And Jon never treats him differently. He even says he should kill him when they reveal who Rattleshirt is.

Mance is directly responsible for the deaths of hundreds of Watchmen, including many of Jon's own brothers. At this point he has done the Watch as much harm as the Others have (if you consider how many men died at the Fist and compare that to the losses at the Bridge of Skulls and the Battle of Castle Black and the losses the Watch suffered to Mance since the man made himself the wildling king).

You actually basically argue that murder and other crimes are less important if you wear a crown or presume to be a king/otherwise prominent person. I guess that also makes Stalin better than a run-of-the-mill murderer, right?

12 hours ago, divica said:

Jon simply sent someone to help arya finish her ride to CB. And even without the arya scenario what was he suposed to do when ramsay demanded val and stannis familly? Give them to ramsay because he can t put the N in risk?

Yes, why not? He has a greater obligation to his men than the prisoners and family of a (now dead) traitor and pretender. The Watch is supposed to take no part.

12 hours ago, divica said:

Protecting people doesn t matter? His word doesn t matter? Him being independent from the north doesn t matter?

If the current Lord of winterfell is abusive and doesn t know his limits is jon suposed to become his bitch to avoid conflict?

Sure he does - that's what it means to be neutral to have no defenses to the south. The Watch are supposed to do whatever a powerful with an army south of the Wall tells them to do. Because they protect the realms of men, they do not attack them.

12 hours ago, divica said:

Yeah, the NW is clearly an exemple of success. The present Nw is clearly the best it ever was. Their recruits are great warriors and exemples of chivalry. All castles are in pristine conditions and nearly at full capacity. Westerosi children dream of joining the NW when they are older...

The Watch survived in its present form for thousands of years. The reason why only scum mans the Wall now is not the fault of the rules but the fault of the self-involved people of the Seven Kingdoms who no longer understand what the Watch is there for.

I mean, don't you understand this? The rules of the Watch were holy and upheld and enforced throughout all the centuries and millennia of the Hundred Kingdoms. At a time when perhaps nine out of every ten black brothers came from families who were mortal enemies. Yet they were able to set all that aside for the common good to defend the realms of men against the Others. If those men could live up to that standard then I see no reason why Jon Snow should get a pass.

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9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

Jon doesn't hold any lands, titles, or crowns either. I have said several times Mance was under Jon's jurisdiction but whatever you want to call him he is NOT the same as the brothers of the NW & Melisandre holds influence over him. Whether you believe that or not doesn't matter because clearly Mance believes it. Power lies where people think it lies & to pretend Mel has no power over Mance but Jon holds ultimate power over both of them is ignoring the story & the text we are given.

I never said Mance was the same as a black brother under Jon's power. But you can have several forms of sworn men in this world. Cat is no ruling lady, either, but Brienne entered her service all the same - her personal service, not the service of House Stark or the King in the North.

It is the same with Rattleshirt-Mance. Stannis gave him to Jon and now he is Jon's man. Even if Jon didn't want him when he authorized his mission he became Jon's man.

And we know that's how Ramsay sees the entire thing - which is the really important part. All attempts to explain away Jon's responsibility fall flat in light of the Pink Letter:

Because Jon never actually contradicts this claim:

Quote

Your false king is dead, bastard. He and all his host were smashed in seven days of battle. I have his magic sword. Tell his red whore.

Your false king’s friends are dead. Their heads upon the walls of Winterfell. Come see them, bastard. Your false king lied, and so did you. You told the world you burned the King-Beyond-the-Wall. Instead you sent him to Winterfell to steal my bride from me.

I will have my bride back. If you want Mance Rayder back, come and get him. I have him in a cage for all the north to see, proof of your lies. The cage is cold, but I have made him a warm cloak from the skins of the six whores who came with him to Winterfell.

I want my bride back. I want the false king’s queen. I want his daughter and his red witch. I want his wildling princess. I want his little prince, the wildling babe. And I want my Reek. Send them to me, bastard, and I will not trouble you or your black crows. Keep them from me, and I will cut out your bastard’s heart and eat it.

It was signed,

Ramsay Bolton,
Trueborn Lord of Winterfell.

If people can believe Tywin ordered Clegane and Lorch to kill Elia and the children or that Gregor raid the Riverlands in disguise then Ramsay is also entitled to believe Jon sent Mance to Winterfell to abduct his bride. And that's a justified reason for war on Ramsay's part.

What Jon actually did is irrelevant at the point the whole scheme went awry. Jon gambled and he lost.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

No, actually this is what you are doing - pretending Mance isn't Mel's man because he isn't formally sworn to her, which I agree is nonsense. 

I really suggest you investigate what it means to be responsible for somebody in a feudal world. I spoke about the TSS situation in the post above. That gives you a pretty good picture. If you do have men in your service and you do not distance yourself from them you are responsible for their actions.

Jon could have declared that he had nothing to do with Mance's actions, he could have tried to weasel out of the situation, but he his too honest a person to do that. He did the thing a Stark would do - he took responsible for the crimes of his man. In fact, he actually welcomed the Pink Letter because it gave him the pretext to actually declare war on the Boltons. Which he wanted to do all along.

Just as I would say Jon welcomed the first opportunity Slynt gave him to execute him.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

No, actually quite the opposite. We can be fairly certain the Ruby has nothing to do with the glamour as Mel glamours the real Rattleshirt to look like Mance & there is no evidence of him wearing any ruby. No one has suggested that the ruby allows her to read his thoughts. We don't really know what it does other than it binds him to her in some manner. There is no reason to think Mel is lying & we have evidence that says the ruby is not for the glamour independent of Mel saying so.

I just don't buy that and it is quite clear why Rattleshirt doesn't wear a ruby openly - most likely they put it in his underwear of something. We do know that Mel had strong connection to Rattleshirt and was thankful when Jon's men killed Rattleshirt because she actually felt him burning which wasn't pleasant.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

Why would that make him stupid? And why would we be given evidence to the contrary? Unless you can come up with a reasonable, logical, answer for that I can't agree with it. 

Seriously? Arya is desperately trying to get to Jon at the Wall. Some dude in black shows up telling her to bring her to her brother. What does she do? Run away? Jon wouldn't have needed Mance or wildling women to pick up his sister.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

So, if Jon didn't know then he isn't responsible for what Mance did at WF?

Read TSS.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

Jon holds some weight here, I've said that. That doesn't mean every action of Mance's are Jon's responsibility or to be blamed on Jon. Furthermore, I don't think Mance's actions need blamed on anyone. He didn't do anything wrong in WF.

I cannot take stuff like that seriously. He man and his women murdered people.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

What Ramsay is & does has everything to do with it. Ramsay is only Lord of WF on false pretenses & doesn't truly hold any power. He only has influence because people think he is Lord of WF. IIrc Ramsay has already sent Jon a letter written in blood with skin inside so it's more than rumours. Ramsay himself says he is flaying the spearwives. What Ramsay is puts Jon on the side of righteousness. 

Jon Snow isn't a Stark, he is a Snow and he is the Lord Commander of the NW and it shouldn't concern him what happens to/at Winterfell.

I agree that somebody should depose the Boltons ... but that's not Jon. Everyone but him.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

I don't want to create a scenario where Mance is acting independently - he clearly is not. He is acting upon Melisandre's wishes, Jon's allowance, & his own will. 3 people were involved in this scheme & to lay it all at the feet of one - the one with the least to do with it - is ridiculous.

Melisandre is to be blamed for that, too. It is likely part of the reason why Ramsay wants the red whore.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

Admitted to what crimes?! Even if he can be accused of lying about Mance - a charge that is shaky at best - it is no crime to lie. He made the opposite clear actually. That he does care about his black brothers that's why he doesn't ask them to March with him, that he cares about the Wildlings that's why he is sending men to HH, that he cares about innocent people that's why he is riding to WF. 

Ramsay says that Jon sent Mance to Winterfell to steal his bride and Jon never says that's a lie. He accepts the accusation.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

And the crowd roars in response to the PL before Jon says anything about marching alone so, no he isn't trying to manipulate them with that - he didn't need to.

Sure, the entire thing is a manipulation. They set things up so that the men follow Jon to war. Else Jon could have just gone to Winterfell all by himself without telling anyone - which he would have if he had actually had intended for himself to go there without anybody else.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

I have no idea where you are getting this from. Is there a specific passage or quote that you believe makes this clear? 

See above.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

There is nothing illegal about Jon allowing Mance to go to WF but what certainly is illegal is the means by which Ramsay has obtained WF. So by your logic Mance has every right to do what he did & so does Jon. 

LOL, no. An injustice does not justify another injustice.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

His demands are not too much? Are you serious? He is asking for 4 women & a little girl besides Jon's head. Since when is this a normal demand?

Since those people are all traitors. Selyse is a traitor's wife and a traitor herself, Melisandre is a traitor's whore and partly responsible for the abduction of Ramsay's wife, and Shireen is a traitor's heir and, if Stannis is dead, a pretender to the Iron Throne.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

Yes Mance would have stayed if Jon said he didn't want him to go but not because he must follow Jon's orders, because the goal is to get Jon to trust Mel - something that will not be accomplished if Jon disagrees with what they are doing. Secondly there is not one single reason for Jon to deny Mance going.

LOL, right. The reasons why he should have forbidden him to go can be read in the Pink Letter.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

The Bolton's threw the first stone by obtaining WF illegally. 

LOL, no. They never so much threw a stone at Jon Snow because he is not a Stark and has no right to care what happens in the Realm as a sworn brother of the Night's Watch.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

So?

Again, so? I would certainly hope he would at least try to free Mance if he is alive when got to WF. He'd be a pretty big arse if he didn't. 

But why should he if Mance acted all by himself and Jon had nothing to do with any of that?

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

I don't see what difference it makes what the wildlings care more about either. 

Because one assume telling them about Mance was part of the reason why the Pink Letter was read out loud.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

This isn't true & even if it were it doesn't equate to Nevets having no grace or whatever you said. 

Mel tells Mance to go

Jon allows it

Mance goes & follows through with a plan that was not the original or at least not what was told to Jon.

You actually don't know that. We don't know what Mel and Mance and Jon talked about after the Mel chapter ended. I say it is not impossible that Jon asked why Mance wanted to take women along - in fact, it is even possible that Jon told Mance to get his sister no matter what, giving him a blank check to do everything in his power to get Arya away from the Boltons and to safety.

In fact, I hope he did that because anything else would mean he didn't really care about Arya. It would mean he actually just was willing to save her if she got away from the Boltons all by herself.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

What? 

That was a typo ;-).

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

No, he was willing to risk his own life to answer Ramsay's threats so that his threats didn't get carried out on the NW. Even in the NW a man has a right to defend himself. 

Do they? Against the realms of men when they actually started to anger said realms by invading their castles and stealing their wives? I don't think so.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

Just because the Wildlings may have been better at killing crows than the crows were at killing the Wildlings doesn't mean they are any more or less at fault for the feuding. 

LOL, no. The Watch never invaded the lands of the wildlings to conquer, rape, or plunder. They merely guard the border of the Seven Kingdoms, cut trees in the haunted forest, and range beyond the Wall for get information of threats to the realms of men. The Watch and the wildlings only have issues with the wildlings try to cross the Wall and invade the lands in the south. If they come in peace to trade and barter and hang out they are welcome at the Wall.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

It clearly doesn't work just fine, the watch was dying. It was filled with criminals. Possibly more men would willingly take the black if there wasn't a rule to leave everything else behind. That seems like a pretty good reason to change it to me. The watch needs men, if the men can be obtained by changing the rules a little then it should be done to save the realm considering what they are facing. Maybe that rule was appropriate when the watch was only to guard the realm against the wildlings but not that the true purpose has been remembered they need every single body they can get regardless of their family or titles.

If the men of the Watch had families they would all run away for Essos or the Summer Isles or Dorne the moment the Others came marching.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

And what should he have done? We don't know exactly what he knew & he definitely didn't have any proof. Who, in their right mind, would have listened to one iota of what he said? You do recall he is Mance-fucking- Rayder right? His head would have been removed the moment he revealed himself & nothing would have been accomplished. 

He could have acted through intermediaries. Nobody said anything about him actually handing himself over to Mormont. But they could have met on neutral territory.

I mean, you do know that Mance was once a black brother and that both he and Mormont and all the high officers of the Watch actually do know what the true enemy is supposed to be, right? Mance reveals in passing in ASoS that the Others are the reason he has been assembling his army.

That twist is a hilarious plot hole, actually. Any sane person with Mance's background and character would have first tried to find a peaceful way across the Wall - especially in light of the fact that the wildlings also need the barrier of the Wall to hide behind. They do not want to destroy it to be safe from the Others.

A proper plot here would have been to make Mormont the new commander with Mance's overtures having been rejected by his predecessor, or something like that. Or perhaps even better: Have Mormont relay Mance's overture to Ned and Robert - and them dismiss it out of hand. That could then have forced Mance to marshal an army to take with force what diplomacy could not.

But none of that is in the books.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

I would say if the Wildlings were as dangerous to the NW as you say Mormont had every reason to reach out for some sort of truce.

Why? Before the wight attack he had no reason to believe the Others were real ... in no small part thanks to Mance not telling him.

9 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

Hmmm is that what I said? Or did I say I would be proud of being a good leader, smart, open minded etc? 

But if you want to know, hell yes I would be proud to know I was one of the few to rise up against a rigid, bigoted system. 

Then you shouldn't have joined that system in the first place. I've zero tolerance or pity for people who only find out that it is shitty to live a celibate life after they have taken holy orders. Nobody forced Mance or Jon or Jaime to join their orders. They did so of their own free will.

It is different with Dareon, Gared (who was just mad with fear), Pyp, Grenn and all the other black brothers who were forced to take the black.

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1 hour ago, Lord Varys said:

Come on, now, don't try to weasel yourself out of this thing. Sure, George tries to put his characters into conflicts of the heart and morality and the heart and all that but - newsflash! - this doesn't mean institutions or vows are wrong.

Jon Snow and Jaime Lannister and, especially, Arya Stark were not forced to swear certain vows or kill certain people - they did so because they wanted to do that.

The idea to turn things around and blame unjust institutions for the problems and crimes certain people committed shows you got to involved in the topic/actions at hand. In the case of Jaime and Arya one then behaves like pen friend of some convicted murderer completely buying his side of the story.

What people usually don't seem to grasp in that kind of discussion is that I can like Arya despite the fact that she is/behaves like a serial killer. We understand why she does what she does but we should not be afraid to call that by the right name. If you can't do that you got too entangled by the character.

The only institution George has actually criticized by using his characters is monarchy (when Quentyn and his friends compare the Westerosi system to the triarchy system of Volantis). If the point of the story was to criticize people making solemn vows or join institutions they don't have to join then we would actually hear more about that. In fact, if there is one part of Westerosi society that is positve then it is the basic rules of their society - that you stick to a promise you made or a vow you swear, that you do not kill guests/hosts/people under your protection who cannot defend themselves, etc.

The idea that the likes of Jaime - who swore a solemn vow of chastity to be able to bang his sister! - was corrupted by an institution is insane. That never made any sense.

Mance is just a very selfish person. He was brought up by the Watch, swore their vows, and then betrayed them over a triviality. I very much understand why he did that because I'd never want to be part of as rigid an order as the NW - but guess what: nobody forced him to do it, just as nobody forced Jon Snow.

I have more understanding for Gared and Dareon (and would have for Pyp and Grenn if they ever broke their vows) than I'll ever have for Jon and Mance - because they were never forced to take the black. They did it of their own free will.

That's just nonsense. Even if Jon had no idea what Mance would do to get his sister to him, he is still responsible for him doing what he did because he sent him out. Mance is doing what he does for Jon Snow. He wants to save his sister, he wants to do him a favor. He doesn't do what he does without his knowledge.

Is Tywin Lannister responsible for the murder or Elia and the children? Is Tywin Lannister responsible for Gregor Clegane raiding the Riverlands?

If you do want to make analogies pick the right ones.

Balon is definitely responsible for the attack on Winterfell because it was his son and his people who did that. Nobody in Westeros would absolve Balon of his responsibility even if Theon publicly swore his father had had no knowledge of that. A feudal system makes the lord or king responsible for the deeds of his sworn men unless they give them up.

I mean, you read TSS, didn't you? Osgrey didn't cut that peasant - Bennis did. But since Osgrey continued to protect Bennis his crime became Osgrey's crime. Osgrey offered to pay a blood price to Lady Webber, not Bennis.

Nobody did give Mance an order not to infiltrate Winterfell, did they?

To have sent Mance to Winterfell to abduct Lady Bolton. Or is there any indication Jon called Ramsay a liar after he had read the letter?

That is a rather prominent part of the story:

We have to count it in Jon's favor that he did not command any of the sworn brothers of the Night's Watch to help him in his oathbreaking, but there cannot be any doubt for any rational person that what Jon did was oathbreaking if it is consensus that what Dareon or Gared did was oathbreaking, too.

Ramsay Bolton did give Jon terms. He chose not to try to meet them, he used this as an excuse to declare war on him when they would have still been other possibilities.

Stannis and his family and attendants are a bunch of traitors. Making common cause with them makes you a traitor as well. The NW is no independent state, it is manned, funded, and fed by the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. If Stannis was crushed then Jon definitely should fulfill Ramsay's demands to save the Watch and himself. After all, he would stand no chance against a united North under Bolton rule if they crushed Stannis and all his Northmen in that seven day battle.

Twice. He did refuse to obey an order twice. Jon deserted, tried to kill a superior officer over a remark said officer made not to Jon's face and broke his vows with Ygritte. If Slynt deserved death, Jon did, too.

LOL, that's exactly that lawyer's prattle that makes no sense. Mance is nothing but a deserter, turncloak, and murderer from the point of view of the Watch. And Jon never treats him differently. He even says he should kill him when they reveal who Rattleshirt is.

Mance is directly responsible for the deaths of hundreds of Watchmen, including many of Jon's own brothers. At this point he has done the Watch as much harm as the Others have (if you consider how many men died at the Fist and compare that to the losses at the Bridge of Skulls and the Battle of Castle Black and the losses the Watch suffered to Mance since the man made himself the wildling king).

You actually basically argue that murder and other crimes are less important if you wear a crown or presume to be a king/otherwise prominent person. I guess that also makes Stalin better than a run-of-the-mill murderer, right?

Yes, why not? He has a greater obligation to his men than the prisoners and family of a (now dead) traitor and pretender. The Watch is supposed to take no part.

Sure he does - that's what it means to be neutral to have no defenses to the south. The Watch are supposed to do whatever a powerful with an army south of the Wall tells them to do. Because they protect the realms of men, they do not attack them.

The Watch survived in its present form for thousands of years. The reason why only scum mans the Wall now is not the fault of the rules but the fault of the self-involved people of the Seven Kingdoms who no longer understand what the Watch is there for.

I mean, don't you understand this? The rules of the Watch were holy and upheld and enforced throughout all the centuries and millennia of the Hundred Kingdoms. At a time when perhaps nine out of every ten black brothers came from families who were mortal enemies. Yet they were able to set all that aside for the common good to defend the realms of men against the Others. If those men could live up to that standard then I see no reason why Jon Snow should get a pass.

That is a very important point.  Whatever feud existed between the families were set aside in order for the watch to do what it was tasked to do.  It was not easy for those men but that requirement is needed to bring a group of men together for a common purpose. 

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20 hours ago, Ygrain said:

 

Ah, bullshit. Mance chaffed under the NW's rigid rules which were, ultimately, no use anyway, and he fought the NW because there was no way any agreement with them could be reached, due to their rigid perceptions of their duty. The NW wouldn't have let them in under any circumstances - look at the shit Jon gets for letting them in, even though they were basically doing what you said.

Unlike Slynt, Mance knew who the real enemy was and was willing to cooperate. Slynt refused to believe.

And just BTW, Jon actually ordered Mance to be killed. Not his problem that Mel pulled her little scheme, the exposure of which would have harmed the NW's alliance with Stannis. Blame Mel if you want to blame anyone.

Those rules kept the NW operating for thousands of years and kept them from getting attacked from the south.  Mance Rayder deserted because he refused to remove an article of clothing.  There is no excuse, nothing to justify that kind of behavior. 

Mance fought the NW instead of looking for a peaceful way to enter because he doesn't want to bend the knee.  He was prideful.  Their very lives were at stake and he was still unwilling to bend his knees.  Jon received shit because the wildlings killed a lot of honest brothers during their attack.  He received shit but the brothers still obeyed. 

Jon was the lord commander and the decision was his, not Mel's.  Mel offered to help but Jon did not have to accept.  Jon was aware of this but his affection for Arya screwed up his judgment.  It all went downhill from there and he made that mistake even worse when he decided to build an army of wildlings to attack the Boltons. 

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37 minutes ago, Aline de Gavrillac said:

Mance Rayder deserted because he refused to remove an article of clothing

You do understand Mance’s desertion is not really about an “article of clothing”, right? :rolleyes:

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55 minutes ago, Aline de Gavrillac said:

Those rules kept the NW operating for thousands of years

More like, highly dysfunctional, relying predominantly on the supply of criminals, manning barely any towers and entirely forgetting who the true enemy is and how to fight them.

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3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

That's just nonsense. Even if Jon had no idea what Mance would do to get his sister to him, he is still responsible for him doing what he did because he sent him out. Mance is doing what he does for Jon Snow. He wants to save his sister, he wants to do him a favor. He doesn't do what he does without his knowledge.

Yes he does. The text is very clear that jon has no idea that mance is going to winterfell. This is a fact without any room for discussion.

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Nobody did give Mance an order not to infiltrate Winterfell, did they?

Nobody ordered mance not to rape people, not to kill inocents, not to infiltrate the kingslanding...

we could write several books with things nobody ordered mance not to do… It would be as ridiculous as jon ordering mance no to go to winterfell because he was sending him to help a girl riding a horse near a lake… There was no reason to think about winterfelll

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

I mean, you read TSS, didn't you? Osgrey didn't cut that peasant - Bennis did. But since Osgrey continued to protect Bennis his crime became Osgrey's crime. Osgrey offered to pay a blood price to Lady Webber, not Bennis.

By your own words. If Jon didn t authorize mance to go to winterfell and do whatever he did, before making him responsable for his actions you need to see if jon actually defends mance. And I doubt he would do it...

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

To have sent Mance to Winterfell to abduct Lady Bolton. Or is there any indication Jon called Ramsay a liar after he had read the letter?

Actually yes. Jon says the is some truth in the contents of the letter, not that it is completly true… So jon say that there are lies in the letter. And jon never says or thinks that he sent mance to winterfell.

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:
Quote

Yarwyck and Marsh were slipping out, he saw, and all their men behind them. It made no matter. He did not need them now. He did not want them. No man can ever say I made my brothers break their vows. If this is oathbreaking, the crime is mine and mine alone.  

We have to count it in Jon's favor that he did not command any of the sworn brothers of the Night's Watch to help him in his oathbreaking, but there cannot be any doubt for any rational person that what Jon did was oathbreaking if it is consensus that what Dareon or Gared did was oathbreaking, too.

Ramsay Bolton did give Jon terms. He chose not to try to meet them, he used this as an excuse to declare war on him when they would have still been other possibilities.

First, in regards to your previous post jon doesn t chose the wildlings over the NW. He is using the wildlings to attack winterfell and doesn t need nor want the rest of the NW involved because he isn t sure if he is breaking his vows.

There can be no doubt this is oathbreaking? Ramsay clearly said that either jon met his terms or he would come for the NW and kill jon. It is a declaration of war! Jon tried to take the initiative and be in an advantageous position in the war.

And besides the fact that it is ramsay that is using excuses to atack the NW what other possibilities were there? Is jon suposed to netotiate wich people he should send ramsey? Because given that most of the people ramsay wants are already jon's guests I don t think he can even capture them for ramsay. And no decent person would ever do it… 

Wether jon wanted to or not ramsay forced him into a war...

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Stannis and his family and attendants are a bunch of traitors. Making common cause with them makes you a traitor as well. The NW is no independent state, it is manned, funded, and fed by the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. If Stannis was crushed then Jon definitely should fulfill Ramsay's demands to save the Watch and himself. After all, he would stand no chance against a united North under Bolton rule if they crushed Stannis and all his Northmen in that seven day battle.

Is there any reference about how the NW is fed and funded? Because I seriously doubt that it is the 7 kingdoms that does it. I don t see cersei sending Money and food for the NW as long as jon is LC and I don t see how the IT could have sent Money or food during the war of the 5 kings. And nobody in the NW ever says that they should act some way or the IT will stop sending them food or Money...

Then have you heard of guest rights? Because all the people ramsay wants are jon guests and under his protection. The most jon can do is send them away. He could never deliver them to ramsey…

How can members of the NW be traitors for helping stannis if they don t follow any lord of the 7 kingdoms.  How could jon decide who lives in the gift if it wasnt independent from the 7 kingdoms? Not Forget that he didn t ask the wildlings to bend the knee to the IT, just to help protect the Wall. 

Finally you are confusing might with right. As long as jon sent the hostages away to essos ramsay would never have the right to atack the NW. However you want the NW to obey all of ramsay whims because he has the power to kill them. That would make the NW a bunch of oathbreakers… If people have to die for what is right then they have to die. 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Twice. He did refuse to obey an order twice. Jon deserted, tried to kill a superior officer over a remark said officer made not to Jon's face and broke his vows with Ygritte. If Slynt deserved death, Jon did, too.

Jon had to break his vows with ygritte to acomplish his mission(and most of the NW break those vows), atacked a superior oficer unharmed and tried to desert. Slynt refused to obey the order several times, insulted jon and implied that he had no power over him. Killing slynt was necessary to keep order in the NW. What would killing jon acomplish? 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

LOL, that's exactly that lawyer's prattle that makes no sense. Mance is nothing but a deserter, turncloak, and murderer from the point of view of the Watch. And Jon never treats him differently. He even says he should kill him when they reveal who Rattleshirt is.

Mance is directly responsible for the deaths of hundreds of Watchmen, including many of Jon's own brothers. At this point he has done the Watch as much harm as the Others have (if you consider how many men died at the Fist and compare that to the losses at the Bridge of Skulls and the Battle of Castle Black and the losses the Watch suffered to Mance since the man made himself the wildling king).

You actually basically argue that murder and other crimes are less important if you wear a crown or presume to be a king/otherwise prominent person. I guess that also makes Stalin better than a run-of-the-mill murderer, right?

Mance is all that and the king of the wildlings. Do you want to compare the consequences of killing a simple deserter to killing the king of the wildlings when they are trying to make peace with the wildlings?

And tormund didn t kill several watchmen? the weeper? Any great wildling warrior? THAT isn t what is important now. The important thing is to get ALL the wildlings south of the Wall wether they are wildlings that jon likes or not. What do you think will happen if they start killing some wildlings because the NW doesn t like them? Do you think they can afford it?

And what I am saying is if you want to make peace with people from someplace you don t start doing it by killing their leader that they love...

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Yes, why not? He has a greater obligation to his men than the prisoners and family of a (now dead) traitor and pretender. The Watch is supposed to take no part

Because they are his guests? Because he isn t suposed to take part in the conflicts of the 7 kingdoms (giving people to their enemies is taking part)? Because it is wrong? Because he isn t ramsey's vassal and therefore he doesn t have to obey him?

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Sure he does - that's what it means to be neutral to have no defenses to the south. The Watch are supposed to do whatever a powerful with an army south of the Wall tells them to do. Because they protect the realms of men, they do not attack them

No they aren t. They are suposed to be neutral and not obey any lord. Acording to you if robb rode to the Wall and orderded them to march as the frontline of his army marching against the lannisters they would have to… 

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

The Watch survived in its present form for thousands of years. The reason why only scum mans the Wall now is not the fault of the rules but the fault of the self-involved people of the Seven Kingdoms who no longer understand what the Watch is there for.

I mean, don't you understand this? The rules of the Watch were holy and upheld and enforced throughout all the centuries and millennia of the Hundred Kingdoms. At a time when perhaps nine out of every ten black brothers came from families who were mortal enemies. Yet they were able to set all that aside for the common good to defend the realms of men against the Others. If those men could live up to that standard then I see no reason why Jon Snow should get a pass.

You have no idea if the oaths of the NW didn change through time. Then you have no idea how many people seeked refuge thrugh the years with the NW because they had familly members there. You have no idea how many people deserted the NW to help their familly. You have no idea if people from oposing kingdoms survived in the NW or if the stronger faction killed the weaker with underhanded tactics. You have no idea if people in the NW sent letters to their famillies that changed the course of wars. You have no idea if these enemies you speak of were sent to diferent castles and never saw each other.

Basically you have no idea what you are talking about…

You say the NW survived until today because of its rules… I say it survived until today because it is a place where important people can send people they don t like with the excuse that they are going there to protect the realm instead of being exiled. 

What I can agree with is that with several kingdoms in constant warfare the people sent to the Wall were mostly knights, lords or soldiers. Nowadays the NW is westeros dumpster. And no organization can survive when its people are the worst that can be found… Once there was more peace in westeros the rules in the NW needed to change because its recruitment method isn t suitable if westeros isn t in constant war in several places.

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40 minutes ago, kissdbyfire said:

You do understand Mance’s desertion is not really about an “article of clothing”, right? :rolleyes:

In the end it is just that. Mance behaved like a little child. He wanted to make himself special. Sure, the cloth meant something to him, but he forfeited that right when he took the black. There is a reason why they all dress alike.

And in the end - even Jon is a better person and a smarter guy than Mance. Jon understands that the NW and the wildlings have to work together to try to defeat the common enemy - but Mance, the man who had all the knowledge and the information to come to the same conclusion decided to declare war on the NW and the Seven Kingdoms, giving them more than ample evidence to neither want to work with or trust the wildlings.

Mance and his men killed hundreds of black brothers and never made so much as a single attempt to work with them against the Others.

In light of that one can understand every black brother and Northman who spits on wildling corpse after killing him because there was not the slightest intention, willingness or attempt on their side to work together.

As a laid out above - if Mance was a sane or rational or consistently written character he would have tried to reach out to Mormont, Ned, or even Robert. Instead he did nothing of that sort.

If he had done that and if the kneelers had dismissed him savage lunatic he may have had a justified cause for his war. But he did not - and that actually makes him one of the worst and most irresponsible leaders in the entire series. He knew the stakes, he knew how bad the situation of his people was - and he made them worse.

Willingly or unwillingly Mance Rayder is the closest ally the Others have had so far. He weakened the Watch, nearly destroyed all the gates in the Wall at CB, and he made the situation between Watch and wildlings much worse. After all, the last proper war between them happened nearly a century ago.

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36 minutes ago, Ygrain said:

More like, highly dysfunctional, relying predominantly on the supply of criminals, manning barely any towers and entirely forgetting who the true enemy is and how to fight them.

It is more than that.

We have no idea if the rules didn t change over the years nor how many times they were broken (and we do know that people desert from the NW)...

It is much more belivable that the NW survived because it is a usefull place to send prisoners (including oposing lords) without having to kill or exile them. And they even have the excuse of sending them to protect the realm! It is a honor!

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4 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

In the end it is just that. Mance behaved like a little child. He wanted to make himself special. Sure, the cloth meant something to him, but he forfeited that right when he took the black. There is a reason why they all dress alike.

And in the end - even Jon is a better person and a smarter guy than Mance. Jon understands that the NW and the wildlings have to work together to try to defeat the common enemy - but Mance, the man who had all the knowledge and the information to come to the same conclusion decided to declare war on the NW and the Seven Kingdoms, giving them more than ample evidence to neither want to work with or trust the wildlings.

Mance and his men killed hundreds of black brothers and never made so much as a single attempt to work with them against the Others.

In light of that one can understand every black brother and Northman who spits on wildling corpse after killing him because there was not the slightest intention, willingness or attempt on their side to work together.

As a laid out above - if Mance was a sane or rational or consistently written character he would have tried to reach out to Mormont, Ned, or even Robert. Instead he did nothing of that sort.

If he had done that and if the kneelers had dismissed him savage lunatic he may have had a justified cause for his war. But he did not - and that actually makes him one of the worst and most irresponsible leaders in the entire series. He knew the stakes, he knew how bad the situation of his people was - and he made them worse.

Willingly or unwillingly Mance Rayder is the closest ally the Others have had so far. He weakened the Watch, nearly destroyed all the gates in the Wall at CB, and he made the situation between Watch and wildlings much worse. After all, the last proper war between them happened nearly a century ago.

I completly agree that mance should have done much more to alert the 7 kingdoms.

But the truth is that we saw how useless mormonts warnings were. Nobody believed in him...

And we also see how much the NW hates the wildlings. They believe in the others but refuse to let the wildlings south of the Wall… They are willing to let them die so that they dont have to feed them. I can understand that from mance's pov if he alerted the NW it would only make thing much harder for him to save the wildlings because the Wall would be better protected and they might not let the wildlings pass.

It is unfair to blame everything on mance. The conflict between the NW and the wildlings at present is just too big to expect one side to voluntarily help the other.

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3 minutes ago, divica said:

Yes he does. The text is very clear that jon has no idea that mance is going to winterfell. This is a fact without any room for discussion.

No, it does not. We don't know what happened after the end of the chapter. Mance did not magically teleport away at the end of the Mel chapter. Things happened there offscreen. I maintain that Jon did give Mance specific instruction what to do and what not to do during his mission. Anything else would make him look even more stupid than he was with that mission - like a guy who couldn't properly arrange a secret mission.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

Nobody ordered mance not to rape people, not to kill inocents, not to infiltrate the kingslanding...

If Jon didn't forbid him that he couldn't complain if he did it. If I set a criminal free I'm responsible for his actions, right? That's why wardens are usually, you know, charged with a crime when they let their prisoners go free. And Jon let Mance go free - a man he should have killed.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

we could write several books with things nobody ordered mance not to do… It would be as ridiculous as jon ordering mance no to go to winterfell because he was sending him to help a girl riding a horse near a lake… There was no reason to think about winterfelll

Mance's job was to save Arya Stark. The only reason why he infiltrates Winterfell is that he wants to save Jon's sister. It is childish to try to absolve Jon of any involvement there if the thing is done with Jon's knowledge and to please him.

If Jon hadn't wanted Mance to infiltrate Winterfell and murder people there he should have told him so - or he should send his sister back to Ramsay after Mance had brought her to him. Do you think he would have cared about what Mance did if it had been a success?

3 minutes ago, divica said:

By your own words. If Jon didn t authorize mance to go to winterfell and do whatever he did, before making him responsable for his actions you need to see if jon actually defends mance. And I doubt he would do it...

My point is that Ramsay is in the right to make Mance responsible for Jon's actions. I care about how this thing looks from the outside not how people justify their own actions to themselves.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

Actually yes. Jon says the is some truth in the contents of the letter, not that it is completly true… So jon say that there are lies in the letter. And jon never says or thinks that he sent mance to winterfell.

Jon reads the letter out loud to the croud ... and there he says nothing that indicates parts of the letter might not be true. He pretends he believes everything Ramsay wrote is true. Which means he publicly accepts the accusation made in the letter as true. If I came before you and read to you a letter of complaints with the intention to intice you to help me beat up the guy and I don't comment on the accusations made in the letter than you would also think that those are true. After all, why else would I read them to you?

3 minutes ago, divica said:

First, in regards to your previous post jon doesn t chose the wildlings over the NW. He is using the wildlings to attack winterfell and doesn t need nor want the rest of the NW involved because he isn t sure if he is breaking his vows.

He chooses the wildlings over the NW in the sense that he plans to use them as an army against the Boltons. Had he not had the wildlings he would have been forced to work with his brothers - or do nothing.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

There can be no doubt this is oathbreaking? Ramsay clearly said that either jon met his terms or he would come for the NW and kill jon. It is a declaration of war! Jon tried to take the initiative and be in an advantageous position in the war.

It is perfectly fine to give Jon terms. He sent a man to abduct Ramsay's bride - and a man who broke guest right beneath Ramsay's roof and murdered people there with the help of his women. Jon can be happy that Ramsay gave him terms. If I had been Ramsay I'd not have given him terms. I'd have marched up to CB and I'd have torched the place.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

And besides the fact that it is ramsay that is using excuses to atack the NW what other possibilities were there? Is jon suposed to netotiate wich people he should send ramsey? Because given that most of the people ramsay wants are already jon's guests I don t think he can even capture them for ramsay. And no decent person would ever do it… 

Jon should have countered with another letter, offering to hand over the false king's family and mistress, and explaining that he didn't have his sister yet. I'd not expect him to ever sent Arya back to Ramsay because I don't think he could have done that but he could have certainly parted with Stannis' people.

You are also aware that guests can be thrown out of your hall, right? Jon could extend guest right until the day Ramsay arrives and then throw them out of his domains.

But I don't have any issue with Jon declaring war on Ramsay - I just point out that while doing that Jon breaks his vows. And that he threw the first stone. That doesn't mean it was necessarily wrong to throw the first stone. Just risky and stupid.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

Wether jon wanted to or not ramsay forced him into a war...

That's just silly. Nobody is forced into war. You can always yield or meet demands. Jon's life is threatened only under certain conditions. If Ramsay had given Jon no other choice but to die he would have had no other choice ... but as it stands he did he had a number of other choices.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

Is there any reference about how the NW is fed and funded? Because I seriously doubt that it is the 7 kingdoms that does it. I don t see cersei sending Money and food for the NW as long as jon is LC and I don t see how the IT could have sent Money or food during the war of the 5 kings. And nobody in the NW ever says that they should act some way or the IT will stop sending them food or Money...

If you don't know that you didn't read the material all that thoroughly. The Watch consists almost exclusively of men from the Seven Kingdoms - they protect their northern border. Most of their food come from the Seven Kingdoms, predominently the North, of course, which means no Lord Commander should ever be stupid enough to anger or resist Winterfell in any way.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

Then have you heard of guest rights? Because all the people ramsay wants are jon guests and under his protection. The most jon can do is send them away. He could never deliver them to ramsey…

Sure, he could throw them out of his hall and then immediately arrest them, make him his prisoner until Ramsay comes to collect them or have his own men deliver them to Winterfell.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

How can members of the NW be traitors for helping stannis if they don t follow any lord of the 7 kingdoms.  How could jon decide who lives in the gift if it wasnt independent from the 7 kingdoms? Not Forget that he didn t ask the wildlings to bend the knee to the IT, just to help protect the Wall. 

The Iron Throne defines who a traitor is. And according to the Pink Letter Stannis is dead. If that's true he is a dead traitor and all who followed or supported him were traitors, too. The victors decide whose cause was just and right, not the losers.

If Stannis didn't lose things are different, of course. But we don't know that yet.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

Finally you are confusing might with right. As long as jon sent the hostages away to essos ramsay would never have the right to atack the NW. However you want the NW to obey all of ramsay whims because he has the power to kill them. That would make the NW a bunch of oathbreakers… If people have to die for what is right then they have to die. 

I don't think you understand what rights the Lord of Winterfell has, but the NW is not a separate state. It is an order that operates under the aegis of the Iron Throne. If the king demolished the order it would be demolished, if the king settled men on the Gifts he would do that, and if the king demanded that NW do something they would do that, too. They are dependent on the Iron Throne and the lords of the Seven Kingdoms, not the other way around.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

Jon had to break his vows with ygritte to acomplish his mission(and most of the NW break those vows), atacked a superior oficer unharmed and tried to desert. Slynt refused to obey the order several times, insulted jon and implied that he had no power over him. Killing slynt was necessary to keep order in the NW. What would killing jon acomplish? 

It would also have helped establish that you better not try to desert (Jon actually deserted, Mormont just didn't push the issue because he was soft and forgiving man) and you better not try to kill a superior officer. It would have established exactly the same thing as executing Slynt supposedly did. And as far as I know it didn't prevent Jon's assassination, did it? What was actually accomplished by executing Slynt?

3 minutes ago, divica said:

Mance is all that and the king of the wildlings. Do you want to compare the consequences of killing a simple deserter to killing the king of the wildlings when they are trying to make peace with the wildlings?

Mance is no longer a king - he lost and his men abandoned him. Even if he was - you are again arguing that important people should be treated differently which actually disgusts me. Do you also think criminals with connections and influence should be treated more leniently than beggars?

3 minutes ago, divica said:

And tormund didn t kill several watchmen? the weeper? Any great wildling warrior? THAT isn t what is important now. The important thing is to get ALL the wildlings south of the Wall wether they are wildlings that jon likes or not. What do you think will happen if they start killing some wildlings because the NW doesn t like them? Do you think they can afford it?

It certainly is important to the people who lost friends and brothers to the wildlings and Mance that those men were killed.

I mean, aren't you cheering Jon on for declaring war on the Boltons? But shouldn't Jon just get over his issues with the Freys and Boltons and work together to defeat the Others? Shouldn't everybody ignore the Red Wedding and hug and fight the wights together?

I actually think they should - and that's why only trying to work with the wildlings while not doing the same with the Boltons is wrong. Supporting Stannis in his Northern war is wrong, too, by the way.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

And what I am saying is if you want to make peace with people from someplace you don t start doing it by killing their leader that they love...

If that leader killed hundreds of your own people for no reason I'd not complain if the man was killed. Just as I don't think it is the duty of the Watch to protect the wildlings after everything they pulled. They could have asked for help before they started an unprovoked war.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

Because they are his guests? Because he isn t suposed to take part in the conflicts of the 7 kingdoms (giving people to their enemies is taking part)? Because it is wrong? Because he isn t ramsey's vassal and therefore he doesn t have to obey him?

Bowing to pressure is not taking part. It is bowing to pressure.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

No they aren t. They are suposed to be neutral and not obey any lord. Acording to you if robb rode to the Wall and orderded them to march as the frontline of his army marching against the lannisters they would have to…

If Robb showed up with an army they would have to figure out a way around that. But a way that didn't involve taking up arms against Robb. Because then they would attack the realms of men, not protect them.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

You have no idea if the oaths of the NW didn change through time. Then you have no idea how many people seeked refuge thrugh the years with the NW because they had familly members there. You have no idea how many people deserted the NW to help their familly. You have no idea if people from oposing kingdoms survived in the NW or if the stronger faction killed the weaker with underhanded tactics. You have no idea if people in the NW sent letters to their famillies that changed the course of wars. You have no idea if these enemies you speak of were sent to diferent castles and never saw each other.

Basically you have no idea what you are talking about…

You don't know, either. But neither you nor I have any reason to take any of your speculations there seriously. We know the Watch lived through the ages, we know deserters were always punished most harshly, we have no reason whatsoever to believe the vows of the Watch ever changed (any speculation in that direction is, at this point, wishful-thinking and without textual basis).

3 minutes ago, divica said:

You say the NW survived until today because of its rules… I say it survived until today because it is a place where important people can send people they don t like with the excuse that they are going there to protect the realm instead of being exiled.

That's a claim without basis. We do know for a fact that the Watch was the place where men from all the Hundred/Seven Kingdoms served with honor. In fact, Nymeria would have never sent anyone to the Watch if it hadn't been common even in Dorne to take the black - which is a ridiculous thing if you think about it for a moment. Nobody in medieval Spain would ever care about doing anything to protect the people of Norway from some dangers in their northernmost lands. That weirdness in and itself believes that the people of Westeros believed in the Others and the importance of the NW for a very long time.

3 minutes ago, divica said:

What I can agree with is that with several kingdoms in constant warfare the people sent to the Wall were mostly knights, lords or soldiers. Nowadays the NW is westeros dumpster. And no organization can survive when its people are the worst that can be found… Once there was more peace in westeros the rules in the NW needed to change because its recruitment method isn t suitable if westeros isn t in constant war in several places.

That's without basis, either. People originally joined the NW because it was a noble calling, a duty comparable to the Kingsguard, something you did to bring honor to yourself and your house. That is why even to this day criminals are occasionally allowed to take the black - that's not punishment, it is the recognition that a man willing to take the black should be allowed to do that no matter the circumstances.

They no longer use it that way, of course. But the rules of the NW have nothing to do with Slynt or Jon's shortcomings or Mance's raider status as a traitor, oathbreaker and murderer. Jon would have done what he did even if the NW was a shining beacon of chivalry.

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1 hour ago, divica said:

I completly agree that mance should have done much more to alert the 7 kingdoms.

But the truth is that we saw how useless mormonts warnings were. Nobody believed in him...

Which is no excuse for a man who never even tried. It is like saying you know you wouldn't pass the exam if you never even tried.

It is the same with Jon essentially doing nothing to warn Westeros or the world of the dangers they are in. Stannis doesn't do anything, either. I consider that a plot hole in part, but it's not an excuse for all they are doing. Really glaring a things like Davos not talking about the Others at all when speaking to Manderly.

1 hour ago, divica said:

And we also see how much the NW hates the wildlings. They believe in the others but refuse to let the wildlings south of the Wall… They are willing to let them die so that they dont have to feed them. I can understand that from mance's pov if he alerted the NW it would only make thing much harder for him to save the wildlings because the Wall would be better protected and they might not let the wildlings pass.

The Watch and the North do hate the wildlings with good reason. If the wildlings had not constantly attacked and raided the realms of men the Watch was founded to protect (which are south of the Wall considering that no wildlings ever volunteered for the Watch as far as we know).

It is rather obvious why the Hundred/Seven Kingdoms demanded of the Watch to also guard their realms against the wildling invaders in addition to the Others because they would have found it rather pointless to fund, feed, clothe, and man the Wall if the Watch would just let raiders and rapists pass the Wall without stopping them. That would be like having a collectively funded border force and using them to stop only specific enemies, not all of them.

As I already said - the Watch do not invade or conquer the lands beyond the Wall. They merely stop wildlings who cross their Wall. The wildlings on the other hand do not accept either the border of the Wall nor the autonomy of the Gifts or the North. They continue to raid those lands.

The wildlings kill the men of the Watch as part of their incursions and raids - and that's why the black brothers hate them. If the wildlings would peacefully coexisted with the Watch and the Seven Kingdoms they would have had no quarrel with the black brothers.

The black brothers only hate the wildlings because they torture and kill their own. Not the other way around.

It is also quite clear that the wildlings could have long ago migrated peacefully down to the Seven Kingdoms if they hadn't come as would-be-conquerors and raiders. The Gifts and the northern reaches of the North are very much depopulated, so it shouldn't be too hard to settle new people there - if they were willing to accept the way of life and laws of the Seven Kingdoms. But that's not something the wildlings want to do.

1 hour ago, divica said:

It is unfair to blame everything on mance. The conflict between the NW and the wildlings at present is just too big to expect one side to voluntarily help the other.

But a man who actually understands the danger the Others pose to the point that he becomes their king to lead them to safety south of the Wall should have the grace to make such attempts. The Watch doesn't understand/know what Mance does, so he would have to be the guy to make overture, not Mormont who doesn't even know what's going on.

We have no reason to fault Tyrion, Robert, Joffrey, Tywin, Mace, Balon, Euron, or Doran for not giving a damn about the Wall and the Watch - they don't have good information. But Mance, Stannis, and Jon do have such information - and they completely fail in ADwD (and Mance since before AGoT) to prepare the continent and mankind to face the true danger.

I'm aware that such attempts would have been difficult. But that's no excuse to not even try. Even less so an excuse to not even consider to try - which is the case for Jon and Stannis in ADwD since neither of them ever considers to inform any Northern lords of the danger they are all in, much less lords and people south of the Neck.

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2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

No, it does not. We don't know what happened after the end of the chapter. Mance did not magically teleport away at the end of the Mel chapter. Things happened there offscreen. I maintain that Jon did give Mance specific instruction what to do and what not to do during his mission. Anything else would make him look even more stupid than he was with that mission - like a guy who couldn't properly arrange a secret mission.

It is very explicit that jon allowed him to take some spearwives to a girl riding a dying horse near a lake. That is written in the text… The only reason jon is allowing mance to leave is because he believes arya is ridding alone...

There is zero evidence or logical reason for jon talking with mance about a possible mission inside winterfel given that he thought arya had already escaped...

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

If Jon didn't forbid him that he couldn't complain if he did it. If I set a criminal free I'm responsible for his actions, right? That's why wardens are usually, you know, charged with a crime when they let their prisoners go free. And Jon let Mance go free - a man he should have killed.

No you are not. The criminal is responsable for his actions… You crime is letting a prisoner go free...

However jon is the LC of the NW. He is the one who decides if the NW wants mance dead… If he decides that is better for the NW to keep him alive a while longer that it is his right.

And people give orders. They don t write a series of books about the things people under their comand can t do. The world just doesn t work that way. So if he disobeyed his orders of going to a girl riding a dying horse near a lake how is that jon's fault?

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Mance's job was to save Arya Stark. The only reason why he infiltrates Winterfell is that he wants to save Jon's sister. It is childish to try to absolve Jon of any involvement there if the thing is done with Jon's knowledge and to please him.

If Jon hadn't wanted Mance to infiltrate Winterfell and murder people there he should have told him so - or he should send his sister back to Ramsay after Mance had brought her to him. Do you think he would have cared about what Mance did if it had been a success?

First, mance's job wasn t to save arya stark. It was to save a girl riding a dying horse near a lake that jon believed was arya stark. The fact that mance didn t cross paths with alys should be proof that he isn t following orders.

We have no idea why mance infiltrated WF. You are forgeting that he should have riden to help alys karstark and somehow apeared in winterfell. As far as we know mance went there because of one of his plots that jon knows nothing about.

And again, jon doesn t write a series of books about the things his men can t do when he gives an order. Nobody does that! Mance went against his orders. period...

And while jon would be happy to have his sister back he would be pretty mad with mance because he went against his orders and made the NW take part in the disputes of the 7 kingdoms when he had no right to do it.

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

My point is that Ramsay is in the right to make Mance responsible for Jon's actions. I care about how this thing looks from the outside not how people justify their own actions to themselves.

Depending on what mance told him yes. If mance lied and said jon sent him to winterfell then ramsay should blame jon. If mance said the truth about going to winterfell of his own volition why should ramsay blame jon?

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

jon reads the letter out loud to the croud ... and there he says nothing that indicates parts of the letter might not be true. He pretends he believes everything Ramsay wrote is true. Which means he publicly accepts the accusation made in the letter as true. If I came before you and read to you a letter of complaints with the intention to intice you to help me beat up the guy and I don't comment on the accusations made in the letter than you would also think that those are true. After all, why else would I read them to you?

And did anybody ask if mance was really alive despite them knowing he should be dead? No.

Did anyone ask if the letter was spoke the truth? Only tormund in private and even he didn t fully believe in it.

Are we supposed to assume everybody thinks the letter is true? Why can t people be thinking that ramsay is lying about mance in order to cause trouble? It is much more likely. Nobody will believe the part about mance being alive without asking questions and jon won t voluntarilly say that mel switched him with rattleshirt… So no reason for jon to coment on that.

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

I don't think you understand what rights the Lord of Winterfell has, but the NW is not a separate state. It is an order that operates under the aegis of the Iron Throne. If the king demolished the order it would be demolished, if the king settled men on the Gifts he would do that, and if the king demanded that NW do something they would do that, too. They are dependent on the Iron Throne and the lords of the Seven Kingdoms, not the other way around.

They depend on them for men forced to join the NW. Otherwise the are free to act acording to their vows. The laws of the 7 kingdoms don t apply to the NW...

And the king can only settle men on the gift because the NW has no means to opose him...

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

It would also have helped establish that you better not try to desert (Jon actually deserted, Mormont just didn't push the issue because he was soft and forgiving man) and you better not try to kill a superior officer. It would have established exactly the same thing as executing Slynt supposedly did. And as far as I know it didn't prevent Jon's assassination, did it? What was actually accomplished by executing Slynt?

It showed you can t be disrespectful to your lord comander and disobey his orders. And thanks to the execution thorne and all the people on slynt's side obeyed jon's orders instead of doing whatever they want.

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Mance is no longer a king - he lost and his men abandoned him. Even if he was - you are again arguing that important people should be treated differently which actually disgusts me. Do you also think criminals with connections and influence should be treated more leniently than beggars?

You are comparing thing that aren t similar. And just because he lost doesn t mean he isn t important for the wildlings. And what I am saying is that if jon wants to gain the trust of the wildlings and convince them to fight for him he shouldn t kill mance for deserting or making the same crimes as most wildlings. If jon will kill all the wildlings that acted against the NW then there will never be peace.

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

It certainly is important to the people who lost friends and brothers to the wildlings and Mance that those men were killed.

I mean, aren't you cheering Jon on for declaring war on the Boltons? But shouldn't Jon just get over his issues with the Freys and Boltons and work together to defeat the Others? Shouldn't everybody ignore the Red Wedding and hug and fight the wights together?

I actually think they should - and that's why only trying to work with the wildlings while not doing the same with the Boltons is wrong. Supporting Stannis in his Northern war is wrong, too, by the way.

And the wildlings that lost people because of the NW? Jon wants for the 2 sides to work together and you want to kill every wildlings that is a criminal in the eyes of the NW... Why would the wildlings accept that? It is better to continue waging war and try to kill NW people and get south of the Wall...

You are thinking like bowen marsh and alister thorne instead of focusing on the bigger threat. With your way of thinking it is impossible to join the NW and wildlings.

And it is obvious that if jon isn t an hypocrite he should advocate for peace while people fight against the others. The problem is that while as the leader of the NW he can try to make peace with the wildlings he can t do anything about the diferent factions in westeros. 

Jon wasn t at war with the boltons. And he could do nothing to arrange peace between stannis, the boltons and the northern houses. Even the help he gave stannis also helped the NW and wildlings… And this doesn t make it wrong for jon to prefer stannis over the boltons…. Besides the obvious reasons he is the only one worried about the others.

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

If that leader killed hundreds of your own people for no reason I'd not complain if the man was killed. Just as I don't think it is the duty of the Watch to protect the wildlings after everything they pulled. They could have asked for help before they started an unprovoked war.

Yeah…. The NW and wildlings hate each other. The NW decides to kill the wildlings' king and you as wildling are ok with it… You don t get even worried that you might be next… If the NW wants the wildlings to accept their terms they have to be fair to all the wildlings. Even for the wildlings they hate!

And the wildlings are men as are the people of the 7 kingdoms. They deserve protection against the others. By the way, even before mance attacked the Wall. What do you think the objective of the great ranging was? To attack the wildlings in force...

Even if they asked for help the wildlings have no reason to believe the Nw would let them go south. On the other hand it is almost garanteed that the Wall would be much better protected and THAT might doom the wildlings...

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Bowing to pressure is not taking part. It is bowing to pressure.

Bowing to pression to take part is taking part. No other way around...

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

If Robb showed up with an army they would have to figure out a way around that. But a way that didn't involve taking up arms against Robb. Because then they would attack the realms of men, not protect them.

Yeah… The NW can t stand for their oaths or for what is right… 

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

You don't know, either. But neither you nor I have any reason to take any of your speculations there seriously. We know the Watch lived through the ages, we know deserters were always punished most harshly, we have no reason whatsoever to believe the vows of the Watch ever changed (any speculation in that direction is, at this point, wishful-thinking and without textual basis).

You completly missed the point...

With the exception of the Others what is happening on westeros and the Wall is just a very normal war. There were thousands of these wars in westeros history. And if people in the NW are making dubius decisions now you think they didn t do the same in the past thousands of wars? That nobody explicity broke their vows? 

If the rules of the NW were broken several times in westeros history and the NW continues to exist, It certainly can t be because of those rules...

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

That's a claim without basis. We do know for a fact that the Watch was the place where men from all the Hundred/Seven Kingdoms served with honor. In fact, Nymeria would have never sent anyone to the Watch if it hadn't been common even in Dorne to take the black - which is a ridiculous thing if you think about it for a moment. Nobody in medieval Spain would ever care about doing anything to protect the people of Norway from some dangers in their northernmost lands. That weirdness in and itself believes that the people of Westeros believed in the Others and the importance of the NW for a very long time.

I agree that they believed in the Other for a long time. And it was that belief that made the NW necessary for a while. Not the rules of the NW that are easily broken...

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

That's without basis, either. People originally joined the NW because it was a noble calling, a duty comparable to the Kingsguard, something you did to bring honor to yourself and your house. That is why even to this day criminals are occasionally allowed to take the black - that's not punishment, it is the recognition that a man willing to take the black should be allowed to do that no matter the circumstances.

They no longer use it that way, of course. But the rules of the NW have nothing to do with Slynt or Jon's shortcomings or Mance's raider status as a traitor, oathbreaker and murderer. Jon would have done what he did even if the NW was a shining beacon of chivalry.

Of course the rules of the NW have everything to do with the people that join the NW. I am not saying that those rules could have been good for the NW at some point in the past. The fact is that those rules have been harming the NW for hundreds or thousands of years.

There isn t much warfare in westeros to keep the NW full of soldiers, knight or lords. It isn t considered a noble cal to join the NW to fight wildlings once in a while. Nobody wants to live permanently in the cold to do almost nothing… The NW should have adpted to atract good people to its ranks.

The fact is that these rules you like so much filled the Wall with scum that can t be trusted in hard situations. They did 2 mutinies in 1 year… they are cowards… they are narrow minded...they aren t trustworthy…. 

With diferent rules mance wouldn t even have deserted… Maybe the people in the NW wouldn t have fed this huge feud with the wildlings...

Edited by divica

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2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

If you don't know that you didn't read the material all that thoroughly. The Watch consists almost exclusively of men from the Seven Kingdoms - they protect their northern border. Most of their food come from the Seven Kingdoms, predominently the North, of course, which means no Lord Commander should ever be stupid enough to anger or resist Winterfell in any way.

I also don t know how this can be true. Since theon took winterfell that the warden of the north hasn t sent  anyhting to the NW... And it has been a lot of time… And we haven t seeen anybody complaining about it on the NW...

Even ramsay doesn t threat to cut the NW funds… 

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6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

never said Mance was the same as a black brother under Jon's power. But you can have several forms of sworn men in this world. Cat is no ruling lady, either, but Brienne entered her service all the same - her personal service, not the service of House Stark or the King in the North

In this at least we agree. Several forms of men in you power. Mance doesn't belong to Jon & Jon alone. He has to defer to Jon, he follows Melisandre, although it's unclear exactly why & both Mel & Jon had to defer to Stannis when he was 'alive' 

Mance being different than the members of the NW is what I'm saying when I say he isn't Jon's man. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

It is the same with Rattleshirt-Mance. Stannis gave him to Jon and now he is Jon's man. Even if Jon didn't want him when he authorized his mission he became Jon's man

Now we are disagreeing again lol because if he became Jon's man upon Stannis giving him to him but Jon still had to defer to Stannis doesn't that make them both, in a sense, Stannis's men? Not in all things but to a point. And when Mel saves Mance's life & starts giving him tasks that he follows doesn't that make Mance partially Mel's man? Especially after Stannis 'dies' & Mel is no longer deferring to him? I disagree completely that Mance became Jon's man upon Jon allowing Mance to carry out Melisandre's plot. That doesn't make any sense. 

There is no clear cut hierarchy of power especially when it comes to non-watch related matters - which this clearly is. 

Jon has full power & jurisdiction over the NW but he does not have full power over Mance, Mel, Stannis, King's men, Queens men, or wildlings. 

Jon could have stopped the mission, yes. Although I don't think it's 100% clear he knows that. He knows Mel changed the plan after he threatened to take off RS head but he doesn't have any reason to believe him giving Mel a command is going to get him anywhere. 

It just isn't black & white here. All the blame cannot be laid at Jon's feet. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

And we know that's how Ramsay sees the entire thing - which is the really important part. All attempts to explain away Jon's responsibility fall flat in light of the Pink Letter

I don't particularly care how Ramsay sees it. Him seeing it a particular way doesn't persuade me thats the right of it. In fact it does quite the opposite. 

The PL doesn't do anything to at all in regards to Jon's responsibility. He doesn't deny these claims. Could be for any number of reasons up to & including him feeling responsible for something that is not his responsibility. Something that would be just like a child of Ned Starks to do. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

people can believe Tywin ordered Clegane and Lorch to kill Elia and the children or that Gregor raid the Riverlands in disguise then Ramsay is also entitled to believe Jon sent Mance to Winterfell to abduct his bride. And that's a justified reason for war on Ramsay's part

Tywin admitted it. He said he told Gregor to kill Elia & the children. Ramsay is entitled to believe whatever he wants that doesn't mean I or Jon have to agree with it. Nor does it make him right or justified. If I think you have killed my cat, so I call the police & get you arrested & sent to jail but you didn't kill my cat that makes me mistaken not justified no matter the evidence I thought I had against you. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

really suggest you investigate what it means to be responsible for somebody in a feudal world. I spoke about the TSS situation in the post above. That gives you a pretty good picture. If you do have men in your service and you do not distance yourself from them you are responsible for their actions

I understand completely. Yes, to a degree Jon holds some responsibility for Mance. So does Mel. So does Stannis if he knew it was Mance & not Rattleshirt & most importantly so does Mance unless he was forced to do what he did by threat of life or limb. 

My argument is not that Jon has no bearing on the situation it is that he is not solely responsible because Mance does not belong to him solely. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Jon could have declared that he had nothing to do with Mance's actions, he could have tried to weasel out of the situation, but he his too honest a person to do that. He did the thing a Stark would do - he took responsible for the crimes of his man. In fact, he actually welcomed the Pink Letter because it gave him the pretext to actually declare war on the Boltons. Which he wanted to do all along

I think you should reread that chapter. He most certainly did not welcome that letter. And again, just because Jon didn't deny it was all his fault doesn't mean he feels it was all his fault or that it is all his fault. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

just don't buy that and it is quite clear why Rattleshirt doesn't wear a ruby openly - most likely they put it in his underwear of something. We do know that Mel had strong connection to Rattleshirt and was thankful when Jon's men killed Rattleshirt because she actually felt him burning which wasn't pleasant.

Your certainly welcome to that opinion but since we have actual textual evidence to the contrary - Mel says so, backed up by what we see - No ruby on Rattleshirt I'm going to stick with mine. Do they even wear underwear? Lol

Let's suppose for a second Rattleshirt does have the ruby strapped to his manhood or something - the fact that Mel feels the burning is further proof that the ruby isn't just about the glamour if at all. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Seriously? Arya is desperately trying to get to Jon at the Wall. Some dude in black shows up telling her to bring her to her brother. What does she do? Run away? Jon wouldn't have needed Mance or wildling women to pick up his sister

Yes seriously. I hate to pull the woman card here but if I, as a woman, am fleeing a life threatening situation - one I know for a fact that there will be men sent after me to take me back or kill me, coupled with the level of manipulation & tricks Ramsay pulls the very LAST thing I'm going to do is run off with some strange man just because he says he is going to take me to my brother. Now a man with 6 women who are clearly not in Ramsay's service I would be much more inclined to listen to. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Jon Snow isn't a Stark, he is a Snow and he is the Lord Commander of the NW and it shouldn't concern him what happens to/at Winterfell

Sure but when the very power that Ramsay has derives from a deceitful source it can't be said that Ramsay had every legal right to retaliate. He had no legal right. None. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Melisandre is to be blamed for that, too. It is likely part of the reason why Ramsay wants the red whore

I agree. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Ramsay says that Jon sent Mance to Winterfell to steal his bride and Jon never says that's a lie. He accepts the accusation

Not denying something when not being asked if it's true does not = accepting the accusation & anyway my thoughts on Jon's responsibility in the whole matter don't come solely from Jon's feelings as to what he is responsible for. 

People feel responsible all the time for the deaths of people that they are not actually responsible for. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Sure, the entire thing is a manipulation. They set things up so that the men follow Jon to war. Else Jon could have just gone to Winterfell all by himself without telling anyone - which he would have if he had actually had intended for himself to go there without anybody else.

That doesn't make it a manipulation. Jon intended to go on his own until he realizes there were a band of Wildlings, not sworn to the NW that may go with him. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

See above

I didn't see anything that makes what you claimed clear. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

LOL, no. An injustice does not justify another injustice.

No it doesn't & that isn't what I said. Im saying if Jon allowing Mance to go to WF gives Ramsay the right to attack Jon then the fact that Ramsay is in his position illegally gives Mance or anyone else the right to remove or expose him. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

But why should he if Mance acted all by himself and Jon had nothing to do with any of that

Why would he leave a man, hanging in a cage being tortured to death if he had the power to rescue him? It has nothing to do with what Jon did or didn't do but basic human compassion.

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Since those people are all traitors. Selyse is a traitor's wife and a traitor herself, Melisandre is a traitor's whore and partly responsible for the abduction of Ramsay's wife, and Shireen is a traitor's heir and, if Stannis is dead, a pretender to the Iron Throne

This is nonsense. Every person in the family is not to be held accountable for one person's actions. Cat & the kids weren't going to be killed because Ned was a "traitor" Jaime is not to be killed or held responsible because Tyrion is a "kinslayer & kingslayer" Hell Sansa was still betrothed to the King after her father was a "traitor" - not that she was treated very nice. Karstarks kin were not held hostage or subject to punishment because of his crime. There's no precedence for this in normal circumstances. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

You actually don't know that. We don't know what Mel and Mance and Jon talked about after the Mel chapter ended. I say it is not impossible that Jon asked why Mance wanted to take women along - in fact, it is even possible that Jon told Mance to get his sister no matter what, giving him a blank check to do everything in his power to get Arya away from the Boltons and to safety

No, it's not impossible. It's also not impossible that Jon forbid Mance to go & he went anyway. There's no point in making up your own scenarios when the text doesn't support it. 

The text we have shows exactly what I said. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Do they? Against the realms of men when they actually started to anger said realms by invading their castles and stealing their wives? I don't think so.

Of course they have the right to defend themselves. Legally & especially morally. He didn't anger the "realms" he angered Ramsay. He didn't invade his castle or steal his wife because, among other things, neither wife nor castle are truly his. The wife was knowingly married to him under a false name & it is through her that he has the castle. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

The Watch never invaded the lands of the wildlings to conquer, rape, or plunder. They merely guard the border of the Seven Kingdoms, cut trees in the haunted forest, and range beyond the Wall for get information of threats to the realms of men. The Watch and the wildlings only have issues with the wildlings try to cross the Wall and invade the lands in the south. If they come in peace to trade and barter and hang out they are welcome at the Wall

No, the NW didn't plunder because everything needed to survive is on their side of the wall. They are stopping the Wildlings from coming through & halting their means to survival. 

There is nothing I've read that shows wildlings are ever welcome at the wall before Jon is LC. The whole watch is in an uproar over Jon letting the Wildlings through even under peaceful conditions, how can you say the watch has no issues with Wildlings or that they are welcome at the wall? 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

If the men of the Watch had families they would all run away for Essos or the Summer Isles or Dorne the moment the Others came marching

Some would sure. But others would stay & fight & try to protect their families. Maybe this isn't the answer or maybe not the only answer but the watch getting along just fine for 1,000 is false. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

mean, you do know that Mance was once a black brother and that both he and Mormont and all the high officers of the Watch actually do know what the true enemy is supposed to be, right? Mance reveals in passing in ASoS that the Others are the reason he has been assembling his army

 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Why? Before the wight attack he had no reason to believe the Others were real ... in no small part thanks to Mance not telling him

Which is it? Mormont knew the true threat or had no reason to until after the wight attack? 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

A proper plot here would have been to make Mormont the new commander with Mance's overtures having been rejected by his predecessor, or something like that. Or perhaps even better: Have Mormont relay Mance's overture to Ned and Robert - and them dismiss it out of hand. That could then have forced Mance to marshal an army to take with force what diplomacy could not

I'm sure GRRM would appreciate knowing what a "proper" plot is. 

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Then you shouldn't have joined that system in the first place. I've zero tolerance or pity for people who only find out that it is shitty to live a celibate life after they have taken holy orders. Nobody forced Mance or Jon or Jaime to join their orders. They did so of their own free will

I said nothing of deserting because they have to be celibate or even because it's a shitty life. 

 

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4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

In the end it is just that. Mance behaved like a little child. He wanted to make himself special. Sure, the cloth meant something to him, but he forfeited that right when he took the black. There is a reason why they all dress alike.

I’ll  make your words mine:

“I don't recall asking you about that, did I ;-)?” :)

Joking aside, you are taking this thing way too literally as well. But this is where we so often disagree on... You take things at face value, you take the literal sense of the text and either discard or disregard everything else. 

Mance’s desertion is about the rigidity of certain rules. And how moronic it is to even waste time and energy on such petty things. Who gives two fucks about the colour of someone else’s cloak? The way this conservative faction of the NW deals w/ things in general, and change in particular, is, quite frankly, ludicrous. And that’s part of the reason for its decline. They’re all gonna bite it, and soon, Marsh, Wick, and whoever else. And good riddance. 

 

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9 minutes ago, kissdbyfire said:

Joking aside, you are taking this thing way too literally as well. But this is where we so often disagree on... You take things at face value, you take the literal sense of the text and either discard or disregard everything else. 

I can very much relate to why Mance deserted. But I also understand that this is no trivial issue. But there is a reason why the men of the Watch dress all they same. They are all equal as sworn brothers. None of them gets fancy dresses, fancy clothes, fancy tokens remembering them of or inciting longing for a fancy life someplace else.

Mance knew what he was signing up to. He said the words, he knew what he was getting himself into. And if Mallister shouldn't have made a fuzz about Mance's cloak then Mance shouldn't have made a fuzz about Mallister making a fuzz, no? But then - you do like special rules for special people, don't you?

[If no issue with that in principle, but I do have such issue with those special people join an order with a specific set of rigid rules and then pull reasons out of their asses why they don't apply to them.]

9 minutes ago, kissdbyfire said:

Mance’s desertion is about the rigidity of certain rules. And how moronic it is to even waste time and energy on such petty things. Who gives two fucks about the colour of someone else’s cloak? The way this conservative faction of the NW deals w/ things in general, and change in particular, is, quite frankly, ludicrous. And that’s part of the reason for its decline. They’re all gonna bite it, and soon, Marsh, Wick, and whoever else. And good riddance.

The men of the Watch are only as good as their volunteers. And the leaders are to a man better than Mance. Marsh and Thorne and even Slynt did not endanger the Wall and mankind itself by declaring war on them and the Seven Kingdoms, no?

If you think about it really then beneath Mance's sympathetic personality is perhaps the greatest danger to mankind in the entire series. This man nearly destroyed the NW and opened up the way for the Others. Not even Euron has at this point the means to do that. But Mance did.

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On 12/7/2019 at 7:23 PM, Lord Varys said:

I can very much relate to why Mance deserted. But I also understand that this is no trivial issue. But there is a reason why the men of the Watch dress all they same. They are all equal as sworn brothers. None of them gets fancy dresses, fancy clothes, fancy tokens remembering them of or inciting longing for a fancy life someplace else.

Mance knew what he was signing up to. He said the words, he knew what he was getting himself into. And if Mallister shouldn't have made a fuzz about Mance's cloak then Mance shouldn't have made a fuzz about Mallister making a fuzz, no?

I’m not sure what you’re saying here, my impression is you’re comparing oranges to spaceships? 

On 12/7/2019 at 7:23 PM, Lord Varys said:

But then - you do like special rules for special people, don't you?

Do I? I find that unlikely b/c I don’t really think anyone is “special”. But go ahead, enlighten me. 

On 12/7/2019 at 7:23 PM, Lord Varys said:

[If no issue with that in principle, but I do have such issue with those special people join an order with a specific set of rigid rules and then pull reasons out of their asses why they don't apply to them.]

It’s not pulling reasons out of their arses. Any order/institution/whatever that is completely rigid is doomed to fail, and that is a fact. So, we can either be flexible, or accept failure, doom, and destruction. And that applies for Westeros and the real world. 

On 12/7/2019 at 7:23 PM, Lord Varys said:

The men of the Watch are only as good as their volunteers. And the leaders are to a man better than Mance. Marsh and Thorne and even Slynt did not endanger the Wall and mankind itself by declaring war on them and the Seven Kingdoms, no?

Does the Watch even get any volunteers at this point? What’s the ratio between volunteers and convicts sent there to avoid execution/maiming? A chain is as strong as its weakest link, and the Watch has way too many very weak links to function as it’s supposed to function. 

On 12/7/2019 at 7:23 PM, Lord Varys said:

If you think about it really then beneath Mance's sympathetic personality is perhaps the greatest danger to mankind in the entire series. This man nearly destroyed the NW and opened up the way for the Others. Not even Euron has at this point the means to do that. But Mance did.

Huh? No idea what you mean. Please, do elaborate. 

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