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View Full Version : Did they know the truth about Palpatine?



darkforcerising
27 February 2006, 07:08 PM
I know this question has probably been asked and answered before, but is it or isn't it common knowledge that the Emperor is a Sith Lord during the Rebellion era?

I thought no, because it seems that such knowledge would be a powerful weapon in the hands of the Rebel Alliance. I would think that the free peoples of the galaxy would be more than willing to fight to topple a regime with such a leader if they knew the truth about him.

Lucas Carr
27 February 2006, 08:14 PM
I'd say it's not common knowledge. Why? Because everyone that we know knew he was a Sith were either dead or on his side by the end of RotS.

Yoda and Obi-Wan might have known, though that isn't explicitly stated in RotS, but seems likely from the OT. But they were in hiding and never came in direct contact with the Rebellion. And Luke didn't know much about it himself, until he met the Emperor.

Aldaron
27 February 2006, 09:46 PM
I think very few knew.

Yoda warned Luke (who was pretty much in the upper echelons of the Alliance): "Do not underestimate the powers of the Emperor".

Yet Luke looked in wide-eyed shock when the Empoeror Force-flipped off his binders: "You no longer need those."

You could practically hear Luke screaming: "He can use the Force?? Why the hell didn't someone tell me??"

Master Dao Rin
28 February 2006, 09:50 AM
I doubt people knew. Indeed, why would they care?

He's the Emperor to everyone, and that's all that matters. The only people that would care would be Jedi, and they are nearly all extinct after Order 66.

gmjabreson
28 February 2006, 10:59 AM
I can think of 3 people off the top of my head that knew he was a Sith Lord. Vader, Yoda, and Obi-wan. From other sources, I'm sure others could have known about him that were force sensitive. Come on, a guy dripping with the darkside and making large waves in the force would have been easy to detect. That was why Yoda went to Dagobah and hid. The Aura of the Dark Jedi Yoda killed there was strong enough to cover up his own.
But I agree, common citizens wouldn't know, and most of those that join the alliance are too young to remember the Clone Wars or anything that came out of that time period. And we know he covered his tracks very well, including going as far as removing Jedi artifacts from the museums and other public displays.
The Senate was too busy infighting to realize if he was or not. After all his office was in the senate building that was torn apart while he fought yoda.

darkforcerising
28 February 2006, 04:05 PM
Makes sense. But I would certainly think that many people would care. And knowing that Darth Vader was a Sith Lord (or at least a Dark Jedi), it wouldn't be too far a stretch of the mind to believe the Emperor to have Dark Force powers. Like I said before, this definitely affect the standing of thousand of groups towards the Rebellion if they knew that the Alliance was trying to topple a government with an inarguably EVIL leader. The Alliance could probably bring a lot of the fence-sitters over to their side.

Lucas Carr
28 February 2006, 05:48 PM
They already know that the Alliance thinks he's "evil", they're rebelling against his lawful government.

Darth Fierce
1 March 2006, 03:57 AM
Eh...it's quite possible that many people that knew Anakin Skywalker was Darth Vader were able to connect the dots to discover that Palpatine was a Sith Lord as well. Bail Organa surely knew this fact from talking with Yoda and probably passed this information on to folks like Mon Mothma.

And even if more people realized Palpatine was a Sith, it wouldn't have necessarily mattered to them. Outside of certain circles, the word Sith probably meant little to nothing to the majority of the galactic populace circa the Rebellion era.

Darth Fierce :vader:

zappo inc
1 March 2006, 01:37 PM
I believe that not only would few know the truth, the Alliance would also be eager to maintain the secrecy. Why? It's hard to drum up help to fight the indomitable Galactic Empire; it would be infinitely harder to win new allies if they also knew that the Emperor himself was a gawdawfully powerful sith sorcerer who could literally keep that murderous Vader goon on bent knee. Gaaaa!! NO thanks! I think i'll be a loyal New Order supporter, thankyou very much! All hail the Emperor!;)

Ash DuQuennes
3 March 2006, 05:19 PM
[Kent Brockman]

And I, for one, welcome our new Sith overlords. I'd like to remind them that as a trusted Imperial citizen, I can be helpful in rounding up others to toil in their underground Sith caves.

[/Kent Brockman]

nichtsistfurmich
3 March 2006, 06:06 PM
I thought I read somewhere that the Emperor tried to hide his Force powers. Even in Esp. IV, the Imperial told Vader that his powers were of an old dead religion. I take that to mean that he didn't know about the Emperor's powers. Plus, since he said Jedi were evil, and many didn't know the difference of Jedi or Sith, or even dark Jedi, he kept his powers hidden to keep order.

Uron Teff
3 March 2006, 06:18 PM
I think nichtsistfurmich points out an interesting fact. Sure most (maybe all but Tarkin, but this is only a suggestion) Imperial Officers didn't know that there was a Force User at the top of the Food Chain. But furthermore it wasn't like that there were no Force User at all in the Imperial system. I mean with all the Inquisitors and Emperor's Hands running around the Empire (i.e. the Emperor) surely had hell of a time to hide them after he had announced at the end of Episode III that all Jedi where outcasts and enemies to the Empire.

Lucas Carr
4 March 2006, 01:20 AM
Perhaps the Emperor hid them in plain sight. Or in other words he institutes an Inquisition (or other Force User Program) and to the rest of the galaxy the Inquisitors are just normal people with no connection to the Force. This gives them the authority that they need without suspicion and when it comes to using their Force Powers the Emperor most likely had plans for that too.

hatten_jc
4 March 2006, 01:48 AM
Originally posted by Uron Teff
I think nichtsistfurmich points out an interesting fact. Sure most (maybe all but Tarkin, but this is only a suggestion) Imperial Officers didn't know that there was a Force User at the top of the Food Chain. But furthermore it wasn't like that there were no Force User at all in the Imperial system. I mean with all the Inquisitors and Emperor's Hands running around the Empire (i.e. the Emperor) surely had hell of a time to hide them after he had announced at the end of Episode III that all Jedi where outcasts and enemies to the Empire.

Perhaps it was a bit of both.
He activly used media and other way to manipulate others belife in how the force was nothing but a supersticion with out no real powers.

Then using Darkside agents to manipulat and controll the officers and Moffs that activly knows and understand the power those agents have.

Thus Empera have created a powerfull secret weapon that HE and only he can use and controll.

wolverine
4 March 2006, 04:53 AM
That does seem to fit in with his methody.

Naga Sadow
5 March 2006, 12:32 PM
As pointed out earlier many of the imperials did not know that the Emperor was a force-user, because Darth Vader was practicing a "hockey old religion".

Also, the star wars novel Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader, points out that nobody knew that Anakin Skywalker was Darth Vader save Yoda, Bail Organa and Obi-Wan kenobi. Perhaps some of the high ranking imperials knew, but not the common populace. To them he was lord Vader.

Darth Fierce
5 March 2006, 02:16 PM
Originally posted by Naga Sadow
Also, the star wars novel Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader, points out that nobody knew that Anakin Skywalker was Darth Vader save Yoda, Bail Organa and Obi-Wan kenobi. Perhaps some of the high ranking imperials knew, but not the common populace. To them he was lord Vader.

Not exactly so...Owen and Beru Lars were made aware that Skywalker had become Vader. It's stated in the New Essential Chronology. As a result some of the common folk knew of Vader's true identity.

Darth Fierce :vader:

zappo inc
8 March 2006, 01:58 PM
yes, but Owen was anni's step brother, lookin after anni's kid. Obi wan would surely have warned Owen and Beru to beware imperial entanglements (they probly thought the stormtroops had taken Luke and hence fought and died at thier hands) - just a thought.

Treefrog
15 March 2006, 07:06 PM
Originally posted by gmjabreson
I can think of 3 people off the top of my head that knew he was a Sith Lord. Vader, Yoda, and Obi-wan. From other sources, I'm sure others could have known about him that were force sensitive. Come on, a guy dripping with the darkside and making large waves in the force would have been easy to detect. That was why Yoda went to Dagobah and hid. The Aura of the Dark Jedi Yoda killed there was strong enough to cover up his own.
But I agree, common citizens wouldn't know, and most of those that join the alliance are too young to remember the Clone Wars or anything that came out of that time period. And we know he covered his tracks very well, including going as far as removing Jedi artifacts from the museums and other public displays.
The Senate was too busy infighting to realize if he was or not. After all his office was in the senate building that was torn apart while he fought yoda.

Actually there's 4 people who knew:

Yoda,
Obi-Wan,
Darth Vader,
and Bail Organa.....

Read Dark Lord: the Rise of Darth Vader if you have any doubts.

Lord Kjeran
20 March 2006, 07:24 PM
Chello!

Actually....

[Monty Python Spanish Inquisition Voice] Yes, 4 people...Yoda, Obi-Wan,
Darth Vader, Bail Organa, and Emperor Palpatine....five, the five people who know....[/MPSIV]

:D

Tony

JeanValjean
24 March 2006, 03:28 AM
maybe bail organa just thought yoda and the emperor had a heated argument.... and the emperor stole yodas robe in his fury... and made him leave through a little tunnel

Ubiqtorate
25 March 2006, 07:09 AM
I think Yoda and Obi-Wan would have made it pretty clear to Bail Organa what was going on. If that's the case, then Bail would have told Mon Mothma and Garm Bel Iblis, which would have made it fairly common knowledge, at least among the upper echelons of the Alliance.

As for the general populace, I think Palpatine would have tried to hide his powers. A lot of sources suggest that the rank-and-file citizen of the Republic didn't really appreciate the distinction between the Jedi and the Sith. The whole "light side, dark side" debate was one they just didn't think about all that much. And a critical part of Palpatine's propoganda campaign was to convince the people that the Jedi were betrayers and not to be trusted. Another part of it was to convince people that the Force was just a crazy old religion, and it doesn't make sense for a modern, educated Emperor to practice a crazy old religion.

On the subject of who knew that Anakin was Darth Vader - I don't think this was common knowledge, either. Anakin was a hero of the Clone Wars, but he was a Jedi and not to be trusted. The only people who saw Anakin as Darth Vader before he donned the mask died, either in the Jedi Temple or on Mustafar (excepting the survivors already mentioned, and the clones with Anakin at the Jedi Temple, who could have been similarly silenced). The novelization of RotS suggests that Vader was already trying to distance himself from the Anakin legacy, suggesting to the separatists on Mustafar that he was not Anakin Skywalker but that "the resemblance is uncanny." Keeping Vader's origins a secret would add to the mystery of the mask, especially since it eliminates the need for an explanation of, "Oh, yeah, he wears the mask and the body armor because he was horribly injured and disfigured in a fight with a Jedi... oh, and did we mention he let the Jedi get away?" It just doesn't strike me that the Empire would be particularly intimidated by a dark, scary man who was only a dark, scary man because he was a cripple.

zappo inc
25 March 2006, 04:53 PM
general Grievous was a wasted cripple underneath his droid exoskeleton, and he intimidated the Republic pretty darn good...

Thinithil
25 March 2006, 06:34 PM
But did people know he was a wasted cripple or did they just behold the menacing visage?

Ubiqtorate
25 March 2006, 09:23 PM
I'm gonna go with visage on that one.

But you're right, Vader definitely did take a page out of Grievous' playbook there - turning an apparent weakness into a strength.

Rogue Trader
26 March 2006, 06:24 AM
Originally posted by Ubiqtorate
As for the general populace, I think Palpatine would have tried to hide his powers. A lot of sources suggest that the rank-and-file citizen of the Republic didn't really appreciate the distinction between the Jedi and the Sith. The whole "light side, dark side" debate was one they just didn't think about all that much. And a critical part of Palpatine's propoganda campaign was to convince the people that the Jedi were betrayers and not to be trusted. Another part of it was to convince people that the Force was just a crazy old religion, and it doesn't make sense for a modern, educated Emperor to practice a crazy old religion.
The early sections of the novel Dark Lord tell us just how little both the Republic and the Senate knew about the events Sidious excuted in order to destroy the Jedi and establish the Empire. To the outside world, there is little actual knowledge about any being called "Darth Sidious" among the general public.

Another important point to consider is the fact that the personae of "Darth Sidious" -- and all its associated connections to the Sith -- has now completed its purpose. Chronicles: The Prequels also mentions that Palpatine saw no more need to use his shadowy cloak... and in so doing, discarded his Sith name.

"The galaxy knows only their beloved Palpatine as Emperor..."

Lord Kjeran
26 March 2006, 09:49 PM
Chello!


Originally posted by Ubiqtorate
I think Yoda and Obi-Wan would have made it pretty clear to Bail Organa what was going on. If that's the case, then Bail would have told Mon Mothma and Garm Bel Iblis, which would have made it fairly common knowledge, at least among the upper echelons of the Alliance.


Yes, the five people are Yoda, Obi-Wan,
Darth Vader, Bail Organa, Emperor Palpatin, Mon Motha, and Garm Bel Iblis.....? The seven...

:D:D:D

It just keeps getting better!

Tony

Jedi_Shadow
26 March 2006, 09:53 PM
I wonder if the clones knew, or were they conditioned not to care?

Ubiqtorate
26 March 2006, 10:13 PM
Nobody expects the Imperial Inquisition! Our chief weapon is surprise! Yes, lightsabers, and surprise!

Well, Shadow, this could go back to our "clones as simpletons" debate. If the clones, as we've discussed in other threads, were trained only to fight, and genetically bred to follow orders without questioning them, then whether they knew Palpatine was Sidious or not, they wouldn't have cared. I doubt many would have even given it a second thought... except maybe for some of the ARC troopers.

Jedi_Shadow
26 March 2006, 10:28 PM
I agree, Ubiqtorate, though we should be clear that clones are not stupid. There's plenty of evidence to disprove that. I much rather think that any who were stationed near enough to him would simply not care. "You have a job to do, and he's the Big Boss, so just do what he says."

Ubiqtorate
30 March 2006, 11:24 AM
Exactly. They're not stupid so much as they are focused. Yeah, if a clone were to sit back and think about it, he could probably make the connection. But he's trained not to sit back and think about it.

gmjabreson
30 March 2006, 03:32 PM
after further consideration, wouldn't the Royal Guards know about his little secret? After all they were in close proximity to him all the time.

wolverine
31 March 2006, 12:30 AM
Originally posted by gmjabreson
after further consideration, wouldn't the Royal Guards know about his little secret? After all they were in close proximity to him all the time.

Yes they probabily did. Because it is my belief each one was selected for the position Due to force sensitivity, and therefore the possibility that the emperor could have moulded them into another DJ should he need to;.

Ubiqtorate
31 March 2006, 06:31 AM
Based on the exceptional abilities of "Major" Tierce in the Hand of Thrawn series, I'd say that if the Royal Guard weren't told specifically of Palpatine's secret, they certainly could have figured it out. While they may not have been truly Force sensitive, as Wolverine suggests, they certainly show above-average attunement. Not to mention Fedayeen-type loyalty - once let in on the secret, they could be trusted to take it to their graves.

TarlSS
11 April 2006, 07:59 PM
Men like Tarkin, Wallex Blissex, Umak Leth and those who fought in the Clone Wars alongside the Jedi would have recognized Vader's Jedi abilities for what they were. Being smart Imperial Admirals and Generals, they would have been aware of it, but not question it.

Keep in mind that the Republic Navy during the time of the Clone Wars consisted mostly of men, women and aliens who went on to serve the Empire. These were the smartest of men, seeing how crewing a capital ship is something of an important task. They also fought alongside the Jedi and would have recognized things.

And..since the Republic recruited men, women and aliens, it's needless to say that the women and aliens who knew too much were probably dealt with, along with those men who didn't cooperate.

And obviously, the Emperor's own Inquisitors would have been able to sense his Force Sensitivity.

Ubiqtorate
11 April 2006, 08:35 PM
I don't think Vader's Force abilities were ever in question, or at least, they were never kept secret. Vader seemed all too willing to provide "demonstrations" of his power, whenever he found someone's "lack of faith disturbing." Palpatine's power is a different story.

Lucas Carr
12 April 2006, 12:55 AM
The Jedi didn't sense Palpatine's Force Sensitivity in RoE era.

PsychoInfiltrator
14 April 2006, 03:22 PM
The Jedi didn't sense Palpatine's Force Sensitivity in RoE era.

Most of the Jedi. As I recall, in one of the Republic comics two Jedi figure it out, but die shortly thereafter fighting Seps.

zappo inc
15 April 2006, 10:44 AM
I suppose we can take Tarkin's word for it when he says to Vader: "You, my friend, are all that's left of their religion."
It was known, i'm sure, in the upper echelons that Vader was a 'Dark Lord of the Sith.' But apparently these same Imperial elite were still unaware of Palpatine's personal Force mastery (it seems, from the SW novelization, that the general perception of the emperor was that he was a puppet of the military, increasingly isolated from the cries of the people for justice). Thus, the high ranking imps felt that THEY were in complete control (of their own domains, anyhoo), with the occasional lip service paid to various advisors of the emperor (as vader probly was considered).

Ubiqtorate
15 April 2006, 01:47 PM
Which is an interesting distinction because it's exactly what Palpatine wanted them to think.

PsychoInfiltrator
15 April 2006, 02:50 PM
Naturally. The Emporer's grand plans worked perfectly in everything, except for Darth Vader. First he lost limbs, then he turned on Palpatine.

Lucas Carr
16 April 2006, 11:29 PM
But if the Emperor had no real power, in the eyes of the military, how come Vader only had to mention that the Emperor was coming to the Death Star II to get construction back on schedule?

Ubiqtorate
17 April 2006, 04:49 AM
A lot of the older roleplaying material suggests that the Emperor did a lot to consolidate his power after the Battle of Yavin. One example of that was that Jerjerrod - a lowly moff, and a young one at that - was the one in charge of the construction of the Second Death Star. Jerjerrod was little more than a flunky, where Tarkin had been one of the highest ranking officers in the military. He was a puppet the Emperor could control.

Other changes are evident, as well. Admiral Motti had no qualms about mouthing off to Vader in Episode IV, whereas Jerjerrod nearly wet himself when he learned that even Vader was coming aboard. This could also be attributed to the fact that Jerjerrod was just a flunky, but it seems to me that there's some suggestion that Vader's standing had increased in the eyes of the military officers in the meantime. Possibly the Emperor's standing had increased, as well.

PsychoInfiltrator
17 April 2006, 06:43 AM
Or maybe Jerrjerrod...like the audience...merely remembers the fates of Ozzel and Needa.

gmjabreson
17 April 2006, 06:52 AM
After a little time to consider this question, would they even bother to care? The Emperor was the Emperor, with lots of power. If they aligned with him, they thought they could get some of that power for themselves. Most of the people that knew the truth about the Emperor being the Sith Lord he was were killed either during the Jedi Purge or the destruction of the Death Star. Everyone else that rises to higher ranks after that time, probably wouldn't be let into that little secret of his. We know the Grand Admirals knew as well, at least Thrawn was definately smart enough to figure it out and mentions knowing to his subordinate.

The Admiral
3 May 2006, 01:15 AM
Palpatine 's status as a Sith Lord is almost certainly common knowledge. He has publicly admitted to fighting several Jedi Masters and winning.

Vader's ways are public knowledge, you might argue that the people at the Death Star's table are the Imperial elite and therefore don' count as 'common' but the two guards certainly are not, and they see and hear everything.

What is being missed is that throughout the prequels public opinion of the Jedi is dropping rapidly.

Palpatine has basically discredited THE FORCE, as a process in his labelling the Jedi as political troublemakers, rather than religious icons. So when Motti launches into his tirade about Vader's beliefs, he is doing so with absolute confidence that Vader is powerless to do anything about it. Possibly the only person sitting at the table who understands exactly how stupid a move it is is Tarkin, and were Tarkin aware of Vaders capabilities, but had not seen them demonstrated, his whole posture becomes one of curiosity 'Oooh! vader's about to use his big red slapping stick, I wonder what it will be like?' turning back to business.

As an analogy, in my country we are ostensibly Chruch of England by default. The Queen is both head of state and head of the church of england. The Archbishop of canterbury is her 2IC in the church hierarchy. In theory, we're meant to believe she has the almighty at the flip of a switch. However, no one would really expect her to be able to smite people down with the holy wrath of the Almighty.
Palpatine is the Emperor, and a Sith Lord, but people would hardly expect him to be able to throw lightning bolts, lift objects with the power of his mind etc, all that was just stories, fables, the reactions of the foolish to a bunch of people who were adept at obfuscation and show.

Ergo, so Vader mentions the Force in a staff meeting. Motti reacts harshly with a mind to exclude such nonsense from a serious meeting. Vader hands down the slappy stick. This story enters the apocrypha of the Empire, becoming in about an hour something that lots of people have heard about but nobody believes.

As for Luke being surprised by Palpatine's flipping the binders I see no reason to label it anything more than surprise at being released from his binders. Vader doesn't do it on Endor, why would Bob do it later?

Uron Teff
3 May 2006, 02:20 AM
Originally posted by The Admiral
Palpatine 's status as a Sith Lord is almost certainly common knowledge. He has publicly admitted to fighting several Jedi Masters and winning.

Though this does not exactly defines the way the Emperor "fights off several Jedi" the rest of your conclusion is very precise and a nice thing to play around with.
This "fighting" could also mean that he used several Clone Troopers. It could just be a statement to visualize that the Jedi tried to assassinate him and that he survived. But it could also be possible that he showed through his statement infront of the senat - as you said The Admiral - that he is a Sith Lord, though he did not explicit mention it in his speech.

Ubiqtorate
3 May 2006, 08:45 AM
Somebody had to have killed all those Jedi. Some bystander must have seen Darth Vader leading the clone armies into the Jedi Temple on Coruscant. Even if they were too far away to recognize Anakin Skywalker, they would have figured out that there was a Darth Somebody leading the charge. Darth Vader made a nice Sith figurehead - nobody needed to know who was really pulling the strings.

DarthPadme
5 May 2006, 08:06 PM
I don't think that it would have mattered if the general public knew about Palpatine knew about him being a Sith Lord or not.

He had the image of being a peaceful figure and being the glue that held the Republic together, and the majority of people supported him. And after the Jedi tried to arrest him, he painted a picture of the Jedi as evil, who wanted to usurp power. He preached all kinds of anti-Jedi rhetoric, and the general public bought it and did nothing to stop the Jedi purges.

The general, ignorant public probably thought the Sith were the good guys, and the Jedi were the bad guys.

gmjabreson
25 October 2006, 06:05 AM
I think we are confusing a topic issue, it isn't really a matter of knowing and doing nothing. I think the public new and did nothing out of cowardice. They knew the Emperor was a Sith but did nothing since he brought peace to the Galaxy in a way, and defeated most of the Jedi. The civvies probably figured if the Jedi couldn't beat him, what could they do to beat him?

Rogue Trader
25 October 2006, 07:06 AM
I still tend to think it was more about the public's ignorance of all the facts, rather than any true element of fear among the Republic regarding the revelations of the Sith.

As we learned in the early sections of the Dark Lord novel... both the Republic and the Senate actually knew very little about the *real* events Sidious was responsible for, and which ultimately resulted in the destruction of the Jedi Order and the establishment of the Empire. To the rest of the Republic, for the most part, there is little actual knowledge about any being called "Darth Sidious" among the public consciousness.

Additionally, consider also that at the conclusion of the Clone Wars, the personae of "Darth Sidious" -- and all its associated connections to the Sith -- has pretty much completed its intended purpose. Chronicles: The Prequels mentions that Palpatine saw no more need to use his shadowy cloak... and in so doing, discarded his Sith name and the "Sidious" personae.

In other words... "The galaxy knows only their beloved Palpatine as Emperor..."