The leader of Mandalore during the Clone Wars, Duchess Satine of Kalevala was a controversial figure. She longed to move Mandalore beyond its violent past and instituted a government that valued pacifism. Though Mandalore did begin to rebuild under her guidance, the dark shadow of the Clone Wars made the Duchess' goals difficult to achieve.
As Prime Minister of Mandalore during the Clone Wars, Almec claimed loyalty to Duchess Satine Kryze and her controversial campaign of neutrality and pacifism. Almec saw Mandalore's violent past as shameful, and feared that the return of the armored warriors of Death Watch would be unstoppable. Though Almec loudly said that he valued the sanctity of Mandalorians above all else, his politician's grin and careful words concealed a different agenda. He helped establish a profitable black-market network that brought goods to Mandalore, looking the other way when tainted goods caused the deaths of Mandalorian children. When his smugglers’ ties were discovered, Almec tried to overthrow Satine, only to wind up in prison himself. He was freed by Darth Maul, who installed him as a puppet leader of the planet.
The Shadow Collective was an alliance of underworld organizations assembled by Darth Maul using a mix of persuasion and brute force. Maul struck a deal with Death Watch leader Pre Vizsla and won the support of the Pyke Syndicate, then subjugated Black Sun and the Hutt Clan by force of arms. The Collective took over Mandalore, but its heyday was short-lived, and it fragmented after Maul’s defeat by Darth Sidious.
The warrior clans of Mandalore were believed to have been wiped out ages ago, their tattered remnants exiled to the Concordia moon. But as the Clone Wars swept the galaxy, the treacherous governor Pre Vizsla resurrected the Mandalorians, and with them, their legendary combat armor that was feared across the galaxy. Backed by Count Dooku and the Separatists, Vizsla began building an army to retake Mandalore from the control of pacifists who were trying to bury violent Mandalore's past. As the coup became inopportune, Dooku abandoned the Death Watch. The warriors wandered the galaxy for a time, then helped conquer Mandalore as part of Darth Maul’s Shadow Collective. Maul then became Death Watch’s leader when he killed Pre Vizsla