- "The TIEs lasted two minutes. I watched the Battle Dragons' turbolasers lance out, brilliant green, searching in the darkness. I watched the Hapan gunners find the range, begin to turn TIEs into flowers of flames. I watched fighters wheel around for another pass, their laser bolts sparking useless blue spirals and whorls off the Hapan shields. Then they were all dead, and it was our turn."
- ―Grand Admiral Osvald Teshik remembers the Battle of Andalia
The Battle of Andalia was an engagement between the Galactic Empire and the Hapes Consortium in the year 0 ABY, in the Andalia system during the Galactic Civil War. Imperial Emperor Palpatine sent Grand Admiral Osvald Teshik to the Hapes Cluster as the head of a task force, led by the Pursuit-class light cruiser Shepherd, on a doomed mission as a lesson for the other Grand Admirals after Teshik previously failed him. Facing a Hapan fleet composed of five Hapan Battle Dragons and eight Nova-class battle cruisers, Teshik's task force was heavily mauled, resulting in the loss of the entire battle group, save for Teshik, who managed to survive.
Prelude[edit | edit source]
- "But he was angry that your privateers had been running wild in the core, and that they'd kidnapped that swollen gasbag Advisor Veshiv from Esseles. Since I commanded that oversector, I had to sate his anger."
- ―Grand Admiral Osvald Teshik, on Emperor Palpatine's reason for sending him to Andalia
In the year 0 ABY, during the Galactic Civil War, a conflict between the Galactic Empire and the Alliance to Restore the Republic, privateers allied with the Rebels captured Imperial Advisor Coh Veshiv from the planet Esseles. Because Imperial Grand Admiral Osvald Teshik commanded the oversector where the event took place and failed to deal with these raiders, Imperial Emperor Palpatine used Teshik as an example to teach the other Grand Admirals a lesson. Palpatine sent Teshik and a task force comprised of the Pursuit-class light cruiser Shepherd, carrying two squadrons of TIE/LN starfighters, and eight gunships on a doomed mission to the Hapes Cluster.
Though most of the task force believed their mission was a recon patrol, with a purpose of keeping the near-Human species of Hapans honest, Teshik knew that none of them would survive the mission's conclusion. After arriving in the star cluster, the task force proceeded to the Andalia system after being ordered to engage the enemy forces there.
The battle[edit | edit source]
- "Six of the gunships were gone inside a minute, vaporized by the battle cruisers. The captains of the last two gunships panicked. They collided head on."
- ―Teshik thinks back on the events of the battle
Upon reaching the Andalia system, the Imperial task force faced a tipped-off Hapan fleet, composed of five Hapan Battle Dragons and eight Nova-class battle cruisers. Although the Imperials faced long odds and many expected the task force to flee, Teshik had a deck officer launch the TIEs to engage the enemy at the start of the battle. Lasting just two minutes before both squadrons were eradicated by Battle Dragon laser fire, the TIEs managed to make two passes, though their weaponry was unable to penetrate the enemy deflector shields. The eight Imperial gunships were also quickly destroyed, six being annihilated within a minute before the last two gunships crashed into each other head-on after their captains panicked.
The Shepherd was the last Imperial ship to fall to the Hapans. The shields of the Pursuit-class cruiser failed, and after a volley of proton torpedoes launched by the lead Battle Dragon struck the ship, the Shepherd's reactor core blew, destroying the cruiser. However, Teshik managed to make it out of the Shepherd before the ship was lost, donning an enviro-suit due to his failure of finding an escape pod. He was ejected from the cruiser by a hull breach, though the survival suit was damaged in the process.
The aftermath[edit | edit source]
- "The only survivor of the Battle of Andalia was the man sent there to die."
- ―Osvald Teshik recalls what happened after the Imperial defeat at Andalia
In the wake of the Hapan victory, Teshik had a vision regarding the nature of war over the centuries. Later, Teshik was picked up by an Imperial snoopship sent by the Emperor to ensure that Palpatine's sentence was carried out after Teshik managed to activate a beacon on his suit. However, due to the damaged suit, only a quarter of Teshik's body survived, the rest being replaced with cybernetics. In the end, Teshik, the man sent by the Emperor to die at Andalia, survived.
Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]
- "I was struck, as tons of folks have been before, by its mix of beauty and despair – a sort of bleak transcendence. By the end of the song I knew what I wanted – an officer bearing witness to scenes that were terrible and yet somehow beautiful, and led to a strange vision."
- ―Author Jason Fry describes the origins of the details involving the Battle of Andalia after listening to Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah
The Battle of Andalia was first mentioned in 2003's Who's Who: Imperial Grand Admirals, a section written by Daniel Wallace and Abel G. Peña in the 66th issue of the Star Wars Insider magazine. A detailed description was not published until 2012 in the The Essential Guide to Warfare, written by Jason Fry and Paul R. Urquhart. Warfare was the first source to identify the battle as the Battle of Andalia, and it used the section containing the battle as the prologue of the book.
Fry later wrote in his endnotes about the creation of the section that described the battle. Originally, instead of the prologue containing details of the battle, it had Imperial Admiral Conan Antonio Motti, engineer and architect Bevel Lemelisk, as well as Imperial General and Doctor Insmot Bowen discussing in a briefing an ancient war between the Celestials and the Rakata. However, Fry's editor, Erich Schoeneweiss, felt the prologue needed to be a more engaging introduction to the book, and have some actual warfare in it, which was why the battle replaced the briefing. Fry later got inspiration for the battle and its consequences when he listened to the song "Hallelujah," by Leonard Cohen.
Sources[edit | edit source]
- "Who's Who: Imperial Grand Admirals"—Star Wars Insider 66 (First mentioned)
- The Essential Guide to Warfare (First identified as Battle of Andalia)