Yeah but the reasons to attack all those chapter were better. And the methods were subtler, because they learned that all out war on a chapter isnt neccessarirly the best way yo deal with them.
Out of 1.000 chapters we know of 5 that has been purged over a time of 10.0000 years. And we also know of quite a few times that space marines have clashed against other imperials. For the most part they get away with it.
Far more than five. Codex: CSM 3.5 Ed alone listed 9 (Astral Claws/Red Corsairs, The Pyre, Steel Cobras, Children of Purgatos, Warp Ghosts, Extinction Angels, Violators, The Dammed Company of Lord Caustos and Sons of Malice.Out of 1.000 chapters we know of 5 that has been purged over a time of 10.0000 years. And we also know of quite a few times that space marines have clashed against other imperials. For the most part they get away with it.
Then there's the Flame Falcons, Relictors, Celestial Lions, Rainbow Warriors and Soul Drinkers.
And these are just the ones we know about, given that less than 200 chapters have actually been named, there's probably a good number that GW simply haven't mentioned.
Yes Marines can get away with a lot, but there's still limits to what can be tolerated.
We also know that the Minotaur Chapter exists almost as a tool of the High Lords to reign in Chapters that are getting a little too independant, and have done so enough times to have developed a reputation for doing so.
The Celestial Lions were purged in a covert manner for some reason, possibly because attacking them openly just for questioning an Inquisitorial decision wouldn't have been politically savvy. Perhaps the Inquisitors involved had a very real fear that their actions, if investigated, would have been deemed unnecessary, wasteful, criminal or whatever. So they stopped the questioning letters in red tape and had the Chapter conveniently wiped out on Armageddon.
Others have been attacked more openly but then they've also done more direct things like refuse to pay tithes, attack inquisitors and get caught, develop mutations or otherwise go rogue on the Empire. Huron Lufgt of the Astral Claws had his head grow too big over SM Chapter independence and even managed to talk a few other Chapters to his side over the issue. So not only did he commit offenses himself, he incited others to do so too. He had to be stopped.
After a careful evaluation of the situation Warlord Throkk decided to use his favorite tactic of Frontal Assault.
perhaps the celestial lions was the first chapter to be targeted for destruction after the badab war?
And if space marines got excommunicated for attacking other imperial forces then there wouldn't be any space marines around any more considering how often that happens in game. and while i know the game and the fluff diverge to some extent it would seem stupid to make fluff that openly challenged the way the game is played.
in all honesty i believe that a lot comes down to several factors.
the primary consideration is the rank of the inquisitor as well as his power base.
Does he actually have the resource and the pull to purge a chapter?
the standing on the chapter master as well as the masters own alliances. imagine an inquisitor launching an assault on ultramar... You would have every UM successor with in the galaxy swarming to their parent chapters defense.
After badab as well as the space wolf war i believe the inquisition became even more seedy then they already are. using other means to harm a chapter then open war unless the case is extreme enough to be able to get away with it.
I will say i lead more towards the view that they would approach another chapter master to summon some sort of conclave to discuss the matter before any actions are taken. personally i follow the view that the inquisition seems to be getting themselves into a more disastrous position. while the autonomy of a space marine chapter can be questioned and some probably do go to far. it seems that with the current state of the universe its better for them to simply shut up and let chapters do wht they do as long as their not worshiping chaos. they should focus on their own agents first.... seriously they deal with xenos regularly and some use demon hosts.... any chapter master should be able to kill an inquisitor as soon as they witness any acts such as those. hell they've killed marines for writing letters for crying out loud.
It's one of these cases where neither side would want to push the point on what they can or cannot do for fear of what they might unleash.
This probably reduces the amount of direct confrontation, but even then it carries a risk.
If the Spacemarines frag an Inquisitor and it works its way back to the order, and they don't have a solid defence, then there will be a retribution.
If the Inquisition takes out a chapter and the rest of the Chapters hear about it, they'd want to know why, and the reason better be good, because these guys have allies, and they'd be concerned if its likely that it could happen to them. They would probably also have allies within the inquisition, as it is not a monolithic organisation, and if you have enough chapters with contacts within the inquisition, the guy who pulled the trigger is likely to suffer in the internal power struggle of the Inquisition.
Yes the reform of the legions prevented one person from weilding too much power, but this same doctrine applies to the inquisition. It should be noted that in exceptional circumstances chapters can work in concert. There is an incident in the BRB where there was long lasting powerstuggle with the High lords or Terra and 40 odd chapters pulled out from their conflicts and dropped by earth to give a sharp message the Highlords.
In summary, for both parties its best not to go there, and so both parties will try and avoid anything that may escalate.
I the inquisition want to end a chapter they either have to do it quickly like they did the relictors or subtle like they did the celestial lions. Prolonged conflicts could end up with more marines joining the rebels.
If subtly then they have to have some kind of athourity over the chapter to press them into a battlefield, Armageddon was an opportunity, the eye of terror was likely another such opportunity but there the supreme commander of te imperial forces was a space marine (mr space wolf himself looks like all inquisitors don't dislike him) and thus less likely to go about with such a plan.
If you want to finish a chapter quickly with an all out assault you need to have forces large enough to break a space marine chapter, and while the imperium certainly do individual inquisitors will have to use quite a lot of influence to muster a force like that. Especially without alerting any inquisitor who disagrees with the plan.
I'd say most space marine chapter that goes rogue does so on their own. They do things that makes the imperium react without the inquisition ever getting involved.
The consorting with strange wolf-like xenoforms - Space Wolves
The being generally a bunch of sneaky and suspicious bastards - Dark Angels
The being downright arrogant bastards - Minotaurs
Order. Unity. Obedience.
The Minotaurs aren't under investigation. They've got the permission of the High Lords themselves to do what they do. Of course, doing so hasn't made them any other friends, but they're not doing what they do "illegally".
The Alpha Legion are the sneaky bastards. Dark Angels are just secretive. They hide the fact that they are are searching for the Fallen but don't care if the Inquisition get their knickers in a twist because they left a world to burn just because there was a rumor of the Fallen.
Yeah and I'd say that if anyone have a backup plan if the inquisition should turn on them its the unforgiven, since they know that if the inquisition finds out about the fallen that its very likely to happen.
I seem to recall a passage where there was a lot of pressure from the Inquisition to go after the Salamanders due to their aberrant apearance, and that it was only their impecible service record that kept the inquisition at bay.
Project Tomb World: Here
With the Black Templars, I don't really see any Inquisitor not viewing them as an asset.Originally Posted by Codex Space Wolves page 56
So yeah, Minotaurs are being investigated by at least one Inquisitor.
Order. Unity. Obedience.
Ah, here we go, Imperial Armour 10, page 106:
I am afraid my covert inquiries into the Minotaurs chapter after their involvement in the recent action at Hermetica have met with a quite literal dead end - the murder of my agent Salco by unknown hands while attempting to recover sealed battle records from the scribe-citadel.
As you are aware my official investigations had been effectively blocked by the local imperial commander long enough for the Chapter's ships to leave orbit. Of his sagacity the governor I dicerned only that he was afraid - more afraid of whomever had ordered him to stall my actions than he was of my inquisitorial rosette; a disquieting prospect to say the least.
This leaves us at present with little more than confirmation of the reports of previous inquisitorial and Ministorum investigations into the Minotaurs being stonewalled or diverted at the highest level, -if further proof were needed. Given Salco's death I have judged that the trail has gone cold here and perhaps it is no longer safe for me to remain. I've also consigned a copy of my report to a secondary courier in case of further 'incident' and remain your old comrade.
//Encrypte data-shard, recovered in the wreckage of the Merchantman/Pride of Jove/023.769.M41//
Order. Unity. Obedience.