Death Star Whitewash

The power of the media is immense, especially when it comes to conflicts. It is not difficult to make your own side look like heroes, no matter what atrocities they commit. Consider, for example, the Death Star.

sci-fi-7.jpg

In the first Star Wars movie the rebels steal some plans and then destroy the Death Star space station. A quick web search reveals how many people were actually on the Death Star at the time:

  • 265,675 Station crew
  • 52,276 gunners
  • 607,360 troops
  • 25,984 Stormtroopers
  • 42,782 ship support staff
  • 167,216 pilots and support crew

That’s over a million people, and that’s only a conservative estimate. A million people. Excuse me, just how fucking cold-blooded are these rebels? They kill a million people and then fly back to their planet and then they give out medals?

What about the million mothers all over the Empire who lose their children, most of whom were probably conscripted? Not to mention the people who are just doing their jobs: the cleaners, and programmers, and dishwashers, and pizza chefs, and all the prisoners in the holding cells. All suddenly dead, because of upper-class twits like Princess Leia, and her lofty ideas about restoring the “old order” where her family and people like them were the ones in charge.

So the rebels think this is the way to win popular opinion – to kill a million people? Many of the Death Star military who died were probably soldiers during the old Republic and simply became the new military when the Emperor took over. And the cold-blooded bastards kill them too – thousands of their own ex-colleagues – and then they have a fucking party?

death_star.jpgLuke Skywalker is a terrorist, guilty of massive crimes against humanity. And all of the rebels are terrorists, pure and simple, by any definition you care to use. These guys do not agree with the present democratically elected government as they are far too secular for their tastes, and so they go around recruiting farm boys like Skywalker and his buddies as X-wing cannon fodder to fight and restore the ancient theocracy and the “old ways”.

And is the Empire “evil”? Well from what we see in Epiosde 3, Palpatine appears to have been democratically elected. Sure, his regime has a fascist tinge to it, but all of the military we see in the original movies are efficient and honourable, and not at all corrupt. And just try and find a military without a fascist tinge to it.

And what did this “Evil Empire” displace? A society managed as some kind of new-age feudal system, where an accident of birth (in this case the ability to be a Jedi) guarantees you rights and privileges above all others, as well as full legal immunity. The Jedi seem to be above the law, answer to nobody and are only interested in having their religion replace all other ideologies and use it to “keep the peace”or, in other words, rule everybody forever.

It truly amazes me how these bellicose fundamentalists can be depicted as “good” and then everybody goes along with it and spends 3 movies clapping their adventures. Me included. Aren’t we all terribly terribly smart?

/ paddy

Advertisements

113 thoughts on “Death Star Whitewash

  1. Mythprogrammer: Not just a planet, but a planet full of terrorist supporters, so that was OK. The US have been using that logic for decades and getting away with it.

  2. * 265,675 Station crew
    * 52,276 gunners
    * 607,360 troops
    * 25,984 Stormtroopers
    * 42,782 ship support staff
    * 167,216 pilots and support crew

    Most of these numbers were clones so who cares about their families.

  3. Larry:Well by the same reasoning, it would be OK if it was a million orphans. Right? And how do you know they were all clones? The clone troopers I saw in the movies were all pretty dumb, and not exactly station crew material.

  4. Kevin Smith Did It First: Oh, how smart you are, putting in a cultural reference like that. Nice one. Yes of course I saw Clerks. That doesn’t make the point less valid though.

  5. no it doesn’t make the point less valid, makes it less original, since all you did was take his musings then add some numbers

  6. Didn’t the Death Star blow up a whole fucking planet? I’d say they were complicit in it’s destruction and as accomplices deserve to die as well.

    Oh and Red in case you were wondering…

  7. It doesn’t make the point less valid. It just makes you look like a hack to not even mention that Smith presented it first in Clerks.

  8. And did you also know that the empire is modelled after the nazis? still think the empire ain’t so bad?

    WAKE UP PEOPLE

  9. Hban, Kevin Smith Did it First: Once again, my points are not at all the same as Smiths. Read the link. What, I’m supposed to give credit to somebody who talks about something slightly similar to what I talk about? And draws different conclusions?

    And Mr. “Kevin Smith Did it First” – if I’m a hack, then let me see something YOU have written and lets compare the quality. Deal?

    creeping fascism: The Nazis were also democratically elected. Like the Empire. Were you?

  10. The both sides were (will be? ;)) terrorists more or less. Though it’s hard to rule such huge thing as Empire without any signs of dictatorship. Looks like they had exaggerated Russia (USSR, when the movie was created) and then got the hard mix of US and ancient Japan — new dictatorship. I wouldn’t compare it to Third Reich, ’cause Gitler lost after all. Nicht wahr? ;)

  11. I think we’re missing the big picture here. Don’t be a sheep like the Empire would want you to be. They’re only trying to distract you from the truth.

    The Death Star was an inside job. The destruction of the Death Star was executed with military precision by the Empire and then the rebels were used as a patsy. The Emperor then used the insurance from the Destruction of the Death Star to construct a second Death Star.

    Need more proof? Consider that Darth Vader and the Emperor were conveniently off the Death Star at the time of its destruction. It’s also interesting to note that Darth Vader, the Emperor, Yoda, Luke Skywalker, and Obi Wan Kenobi all adhere to an ancient, cult-like religious view. But most shocking of all? Luke Skywalker is the son of Darth Vader.

    Spread the truth.

  12. It’s also interesting to note that Obi Wan Kenobi was reported to have been killed by Darth Vader, yet his remains were never recovered.

  13. What was cut from the history books were the scenes of the fighters getting piss-drunk to the point of severe alcohol poisoning just to escape their guilt of having taken part in mass murder, justified or not. I’ll bet that Luke turned to crack cocaine, too.

  14. It is a super weapon made to control the galaxy out of fear… And you are supporting it?

    Also “one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter”.
    Death Star blew up a planet suspected of holding the rebels and the such. But applying your logic there would of course be civilians who shouldn’t be killed. Also they would have mothers all across the galaxy.

  15. i think its time for another revolution! its no longer the for the people, by the people, its for the us government, on the back of thse less inclined! hell, the last us revolution was about taxees, why not start a new over over the fact our current goverenment is killing innocent people?!

  16. Far be it from me to have a continuing discussion with a (female) pink Grimace McDonalds character who blogs online, but…

    creeping fascism: The Nazis were also democratically elected. Like the Empire. Were you?

    How about this: Democracy doesn’t kill people, people kill people.

    Now doesn’t that neatly separate my saintly-hood from my debauchery?

    Right?

  17. Luckily it’s only a movie, but I don’t know about you all about killing about 1 million ‘CLONES’ is evil or not. I won’t think twice to kill if I see another Bobba Fett.

    Moreover, when DS blasted Alderaan(Princess Leia’s home planet) into smithereens, do you have any info how many ‘REAL’ death were there? :)

  18. starwarsfreak: They weren’t ANY “real” deaths, because they were all fictional. Hah!

    But apparently it was 500 billion. Which is rather a lot for one planet–the overcrowding must have been terrible.

  19. # creeping fascism Says:
    January 6, 2008 at 9:41 am

    And did you also know that the empire is modelled after the nazis? still think the empire ain’t so bad?
    ==========================

    It’s actually based on Marxist totalitarianism, like old Soviet Russia. The soviets killed over 100 million people, while NS Germany is attributed to 100 million (6 being Jews).

    Hell, the 6 million number is not even accurate, and anyone who is willing to look into NON-Jewish sources about the holocaust will come to that obvious conclusion. For a small example of what I’m referring to, go to YouTube.com and search for videos by a Jew named David Cole. He visits Auschwitz and records the whole thing, getting answers to questions that only a Jew could get from an Auschwitz tour guide.

  20. You sir, are a moron.
    There’s a difference between guerilla warfare and terrorism, one targets military installations specifically, the other aims to create fear by targeting civilians.
    People die in any war, but that’s not the point, it’s whether the people being targeted themselves are soldiers or not.
    Only americans and / or fundamentalist muslims would fail to see that difference and we all know whay that has lead to.

  21. I guess Obi-Wan was right when he said ‘Many of the truths that we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view’.

  22. paddyK: Funny to discover the photo of Barbapapa that I shot, on your profile. It’s totally OK, but maybe you’re interested in some extra information as: the photo is shot in a small public library in Sweden, Håbo bibliotek, and this one Barbapapa is the mascot of the children’s section of the library. ;)

  23. Mikael Bergkvist: You said “You sir, are a moron. There’s a difference between guerilla warfare and terrorism, one targets military installations specifically, the other aims to create fear by targeting civilians.”

    Very true. Still, one million dead is a little over the top for a guerilla action, don’t you think?

    And I am a moron. But I’m getting better.

  24. Mikael Bergkvist got it right. The Death Star was a military installation, and thus a rebel attack on it is guerilla warfare rather than terrorism.

  25. Bill: Blast you all, bringing in your logic and definitions! But yes, you nailed me there.

    But how come an attack on an American military installation is almost always counted as terrorism in the media, or at least as being made by “illegal combatants”? Isn’t that a bit odd?

  26. I’m pretty sure that the empire is not a democracy. If memory serves me right, Palpatine was elected, but he then did away with the republic so that he could serve as emperor for life.

    And the Empire isn’t the nice friendly organization that you make it out to be. Remember that Anakin Skywalker perpetrated his own terrorist activities when he killed the Jedis.

  27. ianwayne: No, it’s not a democracy in the original movies, but Palpatine WAS democratically elected in the first place. And I don’t anywhere claim that the Empire is “friendly”.

    My main point is that the portrayal of the Empire as “totally evil” and the rebels as “totally good” is very biased, and it’s quite amazing that we all go along with it. Both sides have their agendas and use violence to further their aims.

  28. An awesome post!
    And the comments are equally as entertaining; but I must admit: I stopped reading the early on due to so many citing Kevin Smith as the originator of this idea.
    My own father, who was in the military at the time, made very similar statements with each film release (4,5,&6).
    So, screw Kevin Smith. All props go to my dad!

    See how stupid it is to claim one person in recent times was the only one EVER to have thought of this?

    Again, excellent post ;)

  29. Phil Russell: Grimace?!? That’s Barbapappa! Honestly, some people…

    A thousand pardons for my ignorance! How could I have possible made such an ignorant, arrogant, imbecilic assumption! Please don’t report me!

  30. yeah, the Empire brought peace to the galaxy, just like Rome brought peace. Then it was the bloody Christians messing with things, just like the rebel alliance! Don’t even get me started about the bestial relationship between Han Solo and Chewbacca!

  31. Phil Russell: I’ll let you off this time. And you’re a physicist? Cool, I also have a physics degree. Who doesn’t love statistical thermodynamics?

  32. I didn’t know that starwars could be so passionately examined.. but though It is of no consequence to real life I found this article Funny…

    and where applicable a good look at life in a sort of ”ALLEGORY OF THE CAVE” kind of way..

    (It might not have been meant to be funny so I apologize if I didn’t get the total larger meaning)

  33. genesiawilliams: Well it was indeed largely in jest (it’s only imaginary people, when it comes down to it). But my points about the media defining who we should support were serious.

    If you read some more of my blog posts you may notice that I’m not serious very often. And when I am, I tend to swear.

  34. paddyK “But apparently it was 500 billion. Which is rather a lot for one planet–the overcrowding must have been terrible.”

    …. I hope you are being sarcastic.

    That is a lot of mothers the empire must of upset.

  35. Great post—very funny. There really is no such thing as truth. If we look at it from one side, logic shows the rebels to be the good guys, but flip that coin and start your logical deduction from a different point and the rebels turn out to be horrible, evil, twisted bad guys. Truth is truly a matter of perspective.

  36. wittybanter: Wholly unoriginal? Quite unoriginal, I grant you. But wholly? No sir, I disagree. Please address all of my points one by one and tell me why they are unoriginal. I’m waiting. Tap-tap-tap…

  37. Phil Russell: I’ll let you off this time.

    Thank you. The world needs more Barbapappas like you.

    I think you have been one of the top posts for at least two days now; I take my hat off to you. I must say that your article does expose a lot of things we ordinarily think about concerning morality, ethics, values and beliefs, even if it draws from theater. And who is to say that the movies aren’t a reflection of our cultural/ideological perspective.

    By the way I have a post where I compare God and science; might be worth a look:

    http://cyberlog.wordpress.com/2007/12/17/science-and-religion-the-particle-and-the-wave/

  38. See? Movies can actually tell you things about modern culture. Indeed, part of the appeal of Star Wars was its commentary on the fundamentals of human conflict; one which seems to hold true to this day. That being said, the idea that someone can turn their side into the valiant side of a conflict and the “others”as the aggressors and the bad guys is nothing new. Up until the end, the People of Germany saw the Nazi Party as championing the cause of German ascension in the face of aggression from western powers, and we know how that turned out.

  39. Perhaps there is one un-hypocritical thing about the philosophical undertones of the movie: Both sides use the Force. The implication is that the means to the end may be controversial, but that it is what the force is used for that allows us to differentiate between ‘us’ and ‘them’.

  40. Sorry man, you can’t just say that something is just “bad”. EVERYTHING has 2 sides. USSR, naziism, Jihadism, etc. etc. all have 2 sides.

  41. So when the crew on the Death Star blew up an entire planet, that is OK, im sure there were alot more than a million people on that planet. If its anything like earth it would be 6 billion innocent people (that had no weapons). At least the empire had guns to defend themselves. Your argument is one sided and very ill informed

  42. fixedgear: No the CREW didn’t blow up Alderaan, the officers did, although the order came from the Emperor. That’s the fun thing with the military chain of command – lack of personal responsibility.

    And anyway Alderann WAS armed. Check around, you’ll see.

    So who’s ill-informed now, hmmm?

  43. First let me say, I am a huge sci-fi fan… but come on people.. it is just a freaking movie!!

    Second, the empire started it first by killing all the Jedis and many others so what were the Rebels supposed to do? The Rebels may have killed a butt load of clones, but something had to be done.

  44. Paddy: “Phil Russell: Grimace?!? That’s Barbapappa! Honestly, some people…”

    HAhAhAhAhA, I nearly peed my pants when I read that cuz I swore your icon was Grimace too. I’m aware of Barbapappa, but only because I was a geek in school. When I look back, Barbapappa was clearly a thought-control cartoon… I mean… LOOK AT THIS SCREWY CARTOON, PEOPLE!! Clearly it was made to create obedient school children that would eventually grow up to build a Death Star.

  45. […] Paddy K writes about the Death Star Whitewash, linking to my earlier essay on the immorality of the Jedi. What about the million mothers all over the Empire who lose their children, most of whom were probably conscripted? Not to mention the people who are just doing their jobs: the cleaners, and programmers, and dishwashers, and pizza chefs, and all the prisoners in the holding cells. All suddenly dead, because of upper-class twits like Princess Leia, and her lofty ideas about resorting the “old order” where her family and people like them were the ones in charge. […]

  46. i wouldn’t mind them being slightly original, as opposed to “oh i know i’ll elaborate on someone else point holy shit that’ll be genius”, i mean if i wanted to read smith’s ideas i’d read his fucking blog, not yours, and yeah i do kinda think original thought is the only reason to blog, and fuck you i know the scene well enough,

  47. miller: Once again, for the hard-of-hearing and hard-of-thinking out there – my points are not at all the same as this Smith guy. Do I need to list them? OK then:

    1) He discusses the second death star, and I discuss the first
    2) I discuss military deaths, he discusses civilian
    3) I focus mainly on the media’s power to make us accept something as “good”. Does Smith? No.

    So Mr. miller, why don’t you send me the link to YOUR blog and we can all go in and have a look, and see how original YOU are, eh?

    And – oh! – it seems that miller knows swear words! Well done miller. Have a prize. Because of course, the person who says “fuck” first wins. Nice one.

  48. Haha – great post :P and amusing and important comments. Regarding the content though: How come *some* people obviously can´t see what this article is about? (eventhough it starts out with “The power of the media is immense,..”)

    And for that Miller guy – afairc the clerks scene is about the indiependent contractors rebuilding it and not about how the audience is supposed to accept one side as totally “good” and the other “evil”.

    Oh I can be an ass too btw: Fuck you.

  49. If anyone calls the Star Wars sextet Sci-Fi, I will personally eat their family.

    It is Space Opera. Nothing but a cowboy movie set in space.

    There is a big difference between science fiction films like Bladerunner, AI or 2001 and that… piece of tat called Star Wars.

    I refer all Star Wars fans to the following video

  50. James: What?!? Star Wars is NOT Space opera – Space Opera makes sense and Star Wars doesn’t. Some of my favourite SF books are Space Opera – it can be done well and also follow most of the laws of physics.

    Star Wars is not even a cowboy movie because they also make sense. Star Wars is a cheesy action fairy-tale that happens to be in space. With bad actors.

    And nobody preaches to ME about SF! I will out-nerd you anywhere, anytime.
    (smiley face)

  51. Well, as you post about Star Wars on your blog and I don’t then I cannot doubt your nerdy credentials.

    PS – My dad’s bigger than your dad. He’s from Kilkenny and can hurl. Yours can’t. Nah. Nah. N’. Nah. Nah!

  52. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    FUCKING STUPID YOU DUMBSHIT

    EMPIRE = EVIL

    REBELS = GOOD

    if you’re too much of a pussy to fight evil, then you deserve to die with them, regardless of whether or not you chose to be on the death star at the time

    IDIOT

  53. “dumbshits “:

    Why don’t you come over here and blow me, you raging imbecile? Oh wait, that’s right – you’re an American and you don’t know where “here” is, or in fact where ANY country in the world is. Or which side your dick is on. Or where you parked your ugly fucking car. Or who your sister was doing in the pig-pen last night.

    So you seriously think you can out-insult an Irishman? Well you can’t, dumb-nuts. So you will have to live with the fact that I am smarter than you, better looking than you, more well-known that you, richer than you, and I can swear your sorry limp pansy ass under the table.

    Plus I did your sister too.

  54. What I always found amazing was the fact that Darth Vader, who was an accomplice in the killing of millions of innocent citizens of Alderan, somehow is absolved of his guilt by killing the emperor at the end of episode III. In fact he earns himself a spot in the shimmering afterlife among the smiling pantheon of good departed Jedis Obi-wan and Yoda.
    Now let me get this straight- the guy is complete asshole and mass murderer killing indiscriminately for 20 some odd years, and the first good thing he does is save his son from being killed by another asshole, (something any father would do) and suddenly all is forgiven? We’re supposed to feel good now that he’s repented, and count him as redeemed and reformed? I’m sorry but Darth Vader should be shown burning in hell at the end of III, with Yoda and Obi-Wan dancing on the motherfucker’s grave.

  55. notorious N.I.G.: Well if WE have no lives then why are you wandering around the Internet and clicking on links you don’t even want to see? Loser!

  56. Do unto the empire as they would do unto you. Kill em all let god sort them out. No injustices done by blowing up the death star and however many people were on it. Who gives a shit. In the end Darth threw the emperor down the shaft and saved Luke, well he knew what he was doing, that’s why he deserved a good place on the other side with Ben and Yoda, he was as instrumental in bringing down the empire as anybody. Palpatine was obvioulsy a major piece of shit in the galaxy. What Vader did was worthy of great reward on the other side. Robert Fett, the Force isn’t stupid. It’s not going to turn down a truly repentant and valuable soul, just to be veangeful. Vader, in his life, he became a piece of shit too, like Palptine, but, in the end he acted as Jedi.

  57. Do unto the empire as they would do unto you. Kill em all let god sort them out. No injustices done by blowing up the death star and however many people were on it. Who gives a shit. In the end Darth threw the emperor down the shaft and saved Luke, well he knew what he was doing, that’s why he deserved a good place on the other side with Ben and Yoda, he was as instrumental in bringing down the empire as anybody. Palpatine was obvioulsy a major piece of shit in the galaxy. What Vader did was worthy of great reward on the other side. Robert Fett, the Force isn’t stupid. It’s not going to turn down a truly repentant and valuable soul, just to be veangeful. Vader, in his life, he became a piece of shit too, like Palptine, but, in the end he acted as a Jedi.

  58. Your original post was definitely correct in that the Empire is not as “bad” as George wants us to think. It was the government. All of the senators cheered for the creation of the Empire in episode III, Except the ones who were plotting treason at the time anyway.

    When it comes down to it Luke was just a farm boy with special powers recruited to a terrorist organization by a hermit, he was then given a very “morally correct” mission to blow up a government installation.

    But George did a good job of hiding that underneath his “Rebels = good”, “Empire = bad” themes.

    Of course it’s unlikely anyone will ever see this.

  59. […] Veröffentlicht von Marc in Fundstück. Schlagworte:Krieg der Sterne, Rückkehr der Jedi-Ritter, Star Wars, Terrorismus. Kommentar schreiben Na, so einfach ist das nicht, wie es in “Star Wars” dargestellt wird. Paddy K erinnert(e schon 2008) in seinem Blog daran, dass auf dem Todesstern rund eine Million Menschen arbeiteten. Seine Schlussfolgerung: Luke Skywalker is a terrorist, guilty of massive crimes against humanity. […]

  60. […] Comment! Na, so einfach ist das nicht, wie es in “Star Wars” dargestellt wird. Paddy K erinnert(e schon 2008) in seinem Blog daran, dass auf dem Todesstern rund eine Million Menschen arbeiteten. Seine Schlussfolgerung: Luke Skywalker is a terrorist, guilty of massive crimes against humanity. […]

  61. Good lord that was a rantathon about a kids movie wasnt it boys and girls!! Now lets all hold hands in a circle and sin:
    “I love you, you love me
    Were a happy family………..

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s