Tuesday, August 3, 2010

3681 BBY: Onslaught of the Sith Empire

We’ve moved ahead an additional 75 years in Star Wars history, and all of the Empire’s preparation efforts have brought it to this point. Onslaught of the Sith Empire tells the story of the Empire’s initial push into Republic space. Since the ending of the second Sith War, the Sith Empire has had 270 years to prepare for this day. It seems the Sith emperor took every precaution to make sure his plan would run as smoothly as possible.

The Republic was most certainly caught unprepared for such a massive invasion fleet. Governments which the Republic thought were allies revealed themselves to be puppet administrations set up by the Sith emperor. Very quickly chaos gripped the Senate, and soon many worlds left the Republic, feeling that they would do a better job of defending themselves, or perhaps capitulating to the demands of the Sith Empire. Divide and conquer has never been a military strategy that has gone out of style. As Master Gnost-Dural said: “The emperor managed to turn the Republic against itself”.

The Empire quickly destroyed shipbuilding yards controlled by the Republic, and captured mining facilities to prop up it’s own war machine. At this point in Star Wars history, the Republic was on its heels.

Two points of discussion come up for me in this interesting bit of chronicle. The first is the figure of the Sith emperor, and second is the mention of the Sith home world of Korriban.

All together, since the ending of the second Sith War, 270 years have past. Taking into account what we do know of the Sith emperor, who originally sent Revan and Malak to prepare the groundwork for the invasion even 5 years prior to the ending of the War, this would put the Sith emperor at over 275 years old. Which begs a few questions: who is this guy? Is the Sith emperor one person, or is it a title? Have there been multiple individuals with the role of Sith emperor dating far back into known recorded history?

The obvious explanation for this is that the Sith emperor has not been the same being over this period of time. What is most likely is that someone has challenged his/her supremacy, and then assumed the role of emperor. What I find most intriguing in this scenario is that, firstly, Master Gnost-Dural, in his historical examination of the Empire/Republic, Sith/Jedi conflict has not mentioned this as a possibility – not yet anyway. And secondly, that the being who usurps the role of emperor manages to maintain the same vision of Imperial growth and invasion of the Republic as their predecessor. From this, another possible explanation is that separate beings have taken on the mantle of emperor, and in doing so became possessed by an ancient Sith sprit: possibly Marka Ragnos, Ludo Kressh, or some such other ancient Sith Lord historical records have yet to discover. With a different body, yet possessed by a single Sith-spiritual-entity, the vision of a galaxy under the control of the Sith Empire would be able to be maintained

A more intriguing possibility is that the Sith emperor has been the same being for these last centuries. Species who live a long time are not unheard of in Star Wars, obvious examples being Master Yoda and Chewbacca. So it’s possible that the Sith emperor is simply a long-lived species who yields tremendous power.

Questions of the Sith emperor aside, I also found interesting the context in which Korriban, the Sith home world, was mentioned. In this piece, Master Gnost-Dural says: “The Republic rallied every available ship to support the fleet, leaving only a handful of Jedi security ships to patrol Korriban. Regrettably Korriban fell back into the enemy’s hands without the Jedi council even knowing about it”. What I found interesting about this, is that sometime after the Sith War, the Jedi finally realized how important it was to keep Korriban under control, and they, along with the Republic, set up an occupation force to keep it from falling into Sith hands again. A smart move on behalf of the Jedi and Republic.

The invasion of the Sith left the Republic and the Jedi flatfooted, but on a positive note, Master Gnost-dural hints at victories achieved by the Republic and Jedi: “All might have been lost in those early years had individual Jedi Masters and Republic military leaders waited for the Senate’s orders. By taking matters into their own hands, they managed to slow the Empire advances.” This slowing of the Empire advancements is the subject of the next timeline.

For my next post I’ll be briefly examining the web-comic Blood of the Empire. As of today it is still an incomplete comic, so I’ll only make a partial post on it, and backlog at some later date. Until next time my friends, may the Force be with you.

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