The Narn Regime
The Narn Regime is arguably the weakest major power of the Babylon 5 universe.
Although their leathery skin leads many people to mistake them for reptiles, Narn are actually marsupials. This is evidenced by references to "pouchlings", "pouch brothers", and the insult, "Kiss my pouch." After Narn females give birth, the males carry the infants in their pouches for three months.
The Narn are the only major race without telepaths. Narn telepaths called "mind walkers" did exist until the Human Thirteenth Century, but at that time most Narn carriers of the telepath gene were wiped out by the Shadows.
Narn society is strongly based around the family. Males and females mate for life.
Narn was originally an agrarian planet with minimal technology. The peaceful inhabitants welcomed the Centauri when they arrived in the early 22nd Century. The Centauri strip mined Narn for its resources and savaged its environment. In the century and a half following their brutal enslavement, the Narn evolved into a more aggressive and warlike species. They pledged that they would never be conquered again, and to this end they turned themselves into a powerful war machine.
Weakness was looked down upon to the point that medical technologies suffered. For example, eyeglasses are not manufactured on Narn, so those who need them must acquire them from other sources and use them only in secret. The Narn ecology was unable to recover because the Narn military industries were just as destructive as the Centauri strip mining. The Narn became like abused children who grow up to be abusers themselves, bullying and subjugating other worlds as a means of protecting their borders from a repeat of the Centauri occupation.
Religious belief among the Narn population ranges from atheism to the following of different prophets. Narn pouchlings are often only given a temporary name at birth. When they reach the age of ten, they choose their own names based upon the religion they intend to follow.
G'Lan is one of the most significant figures in Narn religion. This angelic figure was actually the result of Vorlon manipulation of the Narn. The writings of G'Lan are ancient. Another popular prophet, G'Ston, lived around the Eighth Century.
The followers of the Prophet G'Quan are growing in number. G'Quan lived around the Thirteenth Century. G'Quan led telepaths in a resistance movement against the Shadows when they occupied Narn. The Book of G'Quan documents the history of the first Shadow War and also contains G'Quan's teachings and philosophies.
The Narn have been playing a catch-up game ever since they entered galactic politics. The majority of their technology was developed from equipment left behind by the Centauri when they ended their first occupation. The Narn have often dealt with the black market arms trade. They were the only government to provide weapons to the Earth Alliance during the Earth-Minbari War. (As a side benefit, the weapons appeared to be of Centauri origin, so the Centauri Republic would be the recipient of any Minbari wrath resulting from captured weapons.)
They are always on the lookout for new technologies to improve the Regime's position. Much of their technology is borrowed, and there is a strong emphasis on military technologies.
The Narn ruling body is a parliament called the Kha'Ri, and it is made up of eight circles. The four inner circles are in permanent session in the capital city of G'Kamazad. The four outer circles only assemble periodically.
The First Circle is made up of eight Narn who rule the entire Narn Regime. The Second Circle has sixteen members, two advisors for each Councilor in the First Circle. The Third Circle is made up of twelve diplomats and ambassadors. Therefore, several of them are often absent performing their duties. G'Kar, the Narn Ambassador to Babylon 5, was a member of the Third Circle. Military leaders hold the seats of the Fourth Circle.
The Fifth and Sixth circles are made up of regional and colonial governors. Most of their duties are performed in their own districts rather than in the capital city. The Seventh and Eighth Circles are filled by scholars and historians.
There are both merit-based and hereditary factors involved in selecting the members of the Kha'Ri.
In addition to the Narn homeworld, the Narn have colonies on Shi, Dross, and Zok and in Quadrant 14.
Relations with Other Species
The Vorlons interfered with Narn development just as they did with many other species. They engineered a Narn telepath gene and implanted it into the population. They also influenced the Narn to revere the Vorlon's chosen angelic image, which the Narn referred to as G'Lan.
Because of its strategic location, the Shadows used the Narn homeworld as a base during the Thirteenth Century. During this time, the Shadows killed off the Narn telepaths.
The Narn Regime is inexorably tied to the Centauri Republic. The Centauri occupied Narn for most of the 22nd Century. Their second occupation in 2259 through 2261 was shorter but more devastating due to the use of mass drivers during the invasion. Even during times of relative peace, the Narn are driven by a strong thirst for revenge against the Centauri. They finally got their revenge in 2262 when the Narn fleet bombarded Centauri Prime from space.
The Narn tried to ally themselves with the Minbari, but the Minbari likely considered the inferior Narn to be inconsequential. However, over the course of the Shadow War, Minbari Ambassador Delenn became personally impressed with G'Kar's strong character. This opened a new door for cooperation. After the formation of the Interstellar Alliance, the Minbari wanted to atone for their inaction during the early days of the Shadow War. They provided Narn with advanced technology to repair the damage done to its climate by the Centauri mass drivers.
The Narn are closest to the Humans in terms of age and technology. They worked hard to establish an alliance with the Humans, even selling them arms during the Earth-Minbari War. However, under the Clark administration, the Earth Alliance signed a treaty with the Centauri Republic. Other Humans, particularly those on Babylon 5, were more sympathetic with the plight of the Narn.
The members of the Non-Aligned Worlds were often at odds with the Narn Regime just as they were at odds with each other. However, they could work together for mutual interests, such as when the Drazi and Narn fleets bombed Centauri Prime. In more peaceful times, cooperation between the Narn and Centauri inspired the Non-Aligned Worlds to adopt certain policies like the formation of the Interstellar Alliance.