A Kabal is a self-governing socio-economic paramilitary organization. Dark Eldar society is comprised primarily of these Kabals, as well as the Haemonculi Covens, the Incubus sect, and the Wych Cults. These Kabals send out raiding parties through Webway portals in order to collect alien beasts, slaves, and anything else the Kabal may need.
Archons, the leaders of Kabals, have no real code or law structure to restrict their actions, save for the "Eye for an Eye" philosophy shared by Dark Eldar. Because of this, it is equally likely for Kabals to cooperate in order to achieve a common goal as it is for a Kabal to declare war on another for seemingly no reason.
Kabals are the direct result of the pleasures cults that dominated Eldar society prior to the Fall. Originally, they were a gathering of like-minded individuals who all strove to attain the same goal, usually to reach the pinnacle of a sensation, as was the goal of all Eldar, hence the birth of Slaanesh. These pleasure cults, at the lowest point of the Eldar's decline, had devolved into little more than street gangs feuding over the territorial rights to ritually torture or kill civilians. Once the Eldar were all but wiped out, the remainder of these cults found safe haven in the Webway, and each helped build Commorragh in the manner best suited to their beliefs. This further cemented their desires to keep and mark territory, which in turn spurred the creation of a more structured, militant organizational structure in the cult. At this point, they stopped being Pleasure Cults, and developed into the Kabals that exist today. Those that were too young or insular to previously align with a Pleasure Cult formed Kabals of their own, and began claiming their territories as well.
The Kabals became the ruling force in Commorragh after Asdrubael Vect took control of the city, replacing the old aristocracy with Kabalite power. In many ways, the brutal meritocracy of the Kabals resembles Vect's own rise to power. Many of Commorragh's noble families fashioned themselves into Kabals, but they have not forgiven Vect for usurping their power.
Chain of Command
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Dark Eldar Kabal Hierarchy
Positions within a Kabal are quite clearly defined, and anyone overstepping their rights as dictated by their position is seen as attempting to overthrow their superior, usually with fatal consequences.
The chain of command for a standard Kabal is: