Likewise, I can't believe nobody thinks there's anything bad about the Imperium or the Emperor's policies. Okay, one now. Thank you kavyanshrike, for suggesting that it may not be moral. (But the Emperor destroyed those aliens' species, just as those aliens would have destroyed my species. It's exactly the same thing. Deciding someone has the right to live and someone doesn't is wrong. That doesn't change just because we're talking about aliens. It's all sentient beings. If a sentient being isn't trying to harm me, it's wrong for me to kill them.) The numbers of planets they eradicated during the Great Crusade is staggering. The numbers of individuals is beyond imagination. And it wasn't an accident. It's not like things escalated too far in so many thousands of cases, and they were trying to figure out how to prevent such horrific mishaps in the future. Any planet that didn't and wouldn't do and believe precisely what the Emperor wanted was wiped out. That policy was called Good. And it was going to continue until there were no beings left in the galaxy who didn't do and believe precisely what the Emperor wanted.
Nobody has a problem with that???
So here's the Word Bearers. They wiped out planets they badly wanted to let live, and they were humiliated by the Emperor, in the form of Roboute, for trying to find a better way. And yes, their way was better. Even if the end does justify the means, the attempt to wipe out all views but the Imperial Truth to make a strong, united humanity failed in 30K. And it continues to fail in 40K. The Truth has changed, but the methods have not. They simply don't work. Even if it was possible to wipe out all views but one, it would be impossible to stop other views from springing up again. The Emperor was a fool to not know these things.
Suddenly, they are shown things that they were told did not exist. Not knowing Chaos existed, they didn't know the depths of horror Chaos delighted in inflicting on even themselves. All they knew was that the picture of the nature of reality the Emperor had given them was a lie. They chose to pursue the truth. I cannot fault them for that. They knew there was some nasty stuff in Chaos. The first stuff they saw was sacrifices and pain. But genocide was their way of life. It's not like they saw things right away that made all they'd done pale in comparison. They threw away the evil they'd been doing for a new evil. But they knew the old evil was a lie, and the new evil was the truth. Or at least a greater slice of the truth.
Yes, things went too far, imo. Chaos DOES do worse things. At least genocide puts uncounted quadrillions of beings out of their misery. Chaos would keep them in their misery forever. Once the Word Bearers saw a clearer picture, they should have chosen another path. That's why the Soul Drinkers are the real heroes to me. (I've only read the Omnibus. I have no idea if they become villains in what will be the second Omnibus.) They saw that the Imperium was corrupt, but they sure didn't turn to Chaos.
Last edited by Vitarus; 01-02-13 at 12:30 PM.