LAST EDITED ON Jul-12-13 AT 12:31 PM (EDT)
The following wall of text is the result of a 2-hour drive from KC back to Manhattan yesterday afternoon in a state car lacking anything but commercial radio (which stayed off. SiriusXM has completely spoiled me to everything on the FM bands except NPR news/entertainment programs).
Now that the destruction of the Danzig has been occurred, other Forumites have noted that the countdown to the Federation Civil War has officially started. Assuming that RTtN/FoF/Blades remain canonically stable once the revamped Day of Infamy hits, I found myself randomly musing over Palpatine’s motivations regarding his role in destroying the Federation. And I realized I simply couldn’t come up with any that made even a lick of sense.
The following list details the assets that Palpatine walked away with that we’ve seen on-screen:
•Some undefined fraction of the Electronic Arts, I mean Earth Alliance/Federation Psi Corp
•Some undefined fraction of EA/Federation war fighting material
o An as yet undefined force of current generation EA/Federation capital ships
o A similarly undefined ground force
•Other assets not yet seen on-screen
If we consider the Psi Corp remnant, while I’m sure Palpatine ensured that he abs combed with a cadre of talented Psi Corp agents, the destruction of the EA lost him the entirety of the Psi Corp support structure; its training centers, support personnel, and perhaps most importantly its recruiting base. So in at least the short- and medium-term, the Psi Corp has effectively been gutted of any real operational efficiency.
If we consider the purely military force, I think Palpatine is even more screwed. Every EA/Federation v IPO ship-to-ship action we’ve seen has led to a loss by the EA. These results indicate that the EA and the Federation as a whole had failed in its attempt to build a military force that could even approach, let alone equal, that of the IPO. Taking the original Day of Infamy as an example, I’d argue they failed to even approach parity with Salusia, Gamilon, the Kilrathi Empire, or heck, even the Irken Elite. Additionally, he again lost his entire military support structure, including even a fleet anchorage port for rest, repair, and resupply, unless he’d secured such a port prior to blockading Naboo.
For all intents and purpose, Palpatine’s blockade force around Naboo was driven off by 1) one Lord of the Great Machines, 2) one Great Alfheim Cat Dragon, 3) one Mandalorian super-weapon, 4) a handful of Force users, and 5) a completely outnumbered/out-classed local militia. This outcome indicates that his entire force is essentially useless against any of the other interstellar powers.
So why did he bother?
Speculation the first: Palpatine, being a Sith Lord, decided that the chaos inherent in destroying the Federation was a worthy goal in and for itself. But good Sith Lords don’t’ desire mere chaos, but long-term complete control. Borrowing from old-school AD$D alignment terminology, I’ve always felt that the real Sith Lords were the actual embodiment of the Lawful Evil box. So destroying the current governmental fabric without then stepping in as the new tyrannical overlord just doesn’t fit.
Speculation the second: Palpatine believed that his purloined forces would be effective enough to secure a pocket empire in the Outer Rim from which he could begin rebuilding the Santovasku Empire, or at least his image of what that empire looked like. In RTtN, we get that famous paraphrased line, ‘Everything is proceeding as I have foreseen’. Palpatine, via his Force visions, has foreseen that he will rise like a phoenix to galactic overlordship. RToN and the events seen so far in FoF would indicate that he had grossly misunderstood his visions.
Given all of the above, the final speculation that percolated up through my brain was the following:
Speculation the third: The Force was actively lying to Palpatine for its own purposes.
I don’t like any of the three above threads. They all fail the smell test in one way or another, which would indicate that Palpatine is actually playing some deep game that so far we simply don’t have the data necessary to deduce. So I admit to great anticipation at seeing how things unfold over the long term.
The moral of the above rambling: I need to remember to bring my iPod and radio transmitter when taking even fairly short work-related drives.
(bah, stupid memory of ship names...)