"As my mentor used to tell me—relish the victory…but savor the hunt."
―Commander Zahra[src]

Ellian Zahra was a human female who served as a commander in the Galactic Empire during the Galactic Civil War against the Rebel Alliance. Both cunning and vengeful, Zahra served at the helm of the Star Destroyer Tarkin's Will. Following the Battle of Hoth, Zahra led attacks on divisions of the scattered Alliance Fleet, though she failed to prevent the rebel Fourth Division from escaping due to the intervention of the rebels aboard the freighter Millennium Falcon.


Service to the EmpireEdit

"Much faith has been placed in you, by both myself and your Emperor, especially considering your prior failures."
―Darth Vader, to Commander Zahra[src]

During the reign of the Galactic Empire,[1] Ellian Zahra[2] served the regime, attaining the rank of commander in the Imperial Navy. Zahra failed the Empire multiple times but Emperor Palpatine and Darth Vader allowed her to live and continue to serve the Empire.[1] Zahra was close to an individual who was killed aboard the Death Star when it was destroyed by the Alliance to Restore the Republic during the Battle of Yavin. She held Princess Leia Organa of the Rebel Alliance responsible for the death of the individual, who she vowed to avenge.[3]

Hunting the rebel armadaEdit

"We attacked both cells. One was completely destroyed. The other…escaped, although they suffered significant losses. I would consider that part of the operation a partial success."
"Partial success does not exist, Commander Zahra. You succeed, or you do not."
―Commander Zahra and Darth Vader[src]

After the Battle of Hoth, in which the Rebel Alliance fleet was forced to scatter,[1] Zahra was tasked with locating cells of the fleet by Lord Vader, who gave her the opportunity to choose any vessel in the Imperial Navy as her flagship. She took command of the Fortitude, an Imperial II-class Star Destroyer that had been damaged in the Battle of Yavin, and rechristened it as the Tarkin's Will, choosing other Imperials who had lost close individuals in the Death Star's destruction as its crew.[3] Using a signal analysis protocol she had developed some time prior, Zahra tracked down two rebel cells that attempted to communicate, the Fourth and Eighth Divisions. Zahra split her forces, sending a fleet to attack the Eighth Division near Malastare while she led an attack on the Fourth Division, which was attempting to regroup at Rendezvous Point Delta-Three.[1]

Zahra aboard Tarkins Will

Commander Zahra watches the attack on the Fourth Division

Zahra utilized a tactic she had previously devised, blockading the rebel fleet with a turbolaser cordon and trapping them against a star. Unable to escape, the Fourth Division suffered heavy losses. When one rebel X-wing starfighter escaped the blockade, Zahra requested that she take manual control of a turbolaser. An Imperial technician was hesitant to do so, but gave control to Zahra upon the insistence of Lieutenant Gorr, the commander's second. Manually controlling the turbolaser, Zahra managed to hit and destroy the starfighter. The arrival of the freighter Millennium Falcon, carrying several prominent members of the Rebel Alliance including Organa, interfered with Zahra's plans. The Falcon managed to destroy one of the Imperial light cruisers, allowing the survivors of the Fourth Division to escape to hyperspace.[1]

Having failed to eliminate the rebel cells, Zahra contacted Darth Vader, who reprimanded her, both for her lack of success and for attempting to destroy the Millennium Falcon, which, unknown to Zahra, carried Luke Skywalker, the son of Vader, who the Sith Lord wanted alive. Ordering Zahra to destroy what remained of the rebel fleet, Vader dismissed her.[1]

Sometime later, Zahra led the Tarkin's Will in an attack on the Alliance's Sixth Division. Although her forces were able to eliminate all rebel vessels within the system, they had no leads as to the locations of the remaining cells, though Zahra was certain that the insurgents would be found. When Lieutenant Gorr, unaware of the Star Destroyer's history, requested that repairs be made to the ship, Zahra chastised Lieutenant Gorr, informing him that the Tarkin's Will served as a memorial to those who died aboard the Death Star, and that the damage it sustained in the battle was a reminder of all who they had lost.[3]

Personality and traitsEdit

"And Commander, please allow me to say that if you also lost someone close to you on the Death Star, you have my utmost sympathies."
"I did. Not long from now, I will whisper the name in Leia Organa's ear. And then my blade will find her throat."
―Lieutenant Gorr and Commander Zahra[src]
Commander Zahra SW1

Zahra, surveying a battle.

A vengeful[3] and cunning commander, Ellian Zahra was devoted to serving the Empire, despite a number of failures. She despised the Rebel Alliance, viewing the destruction of their fleet with enjoyment.[1] Having lost a close individual in the destruction of the Death Star, Zahra blamed Leia Organa for the act. Zahra wished to slit Organa's throat in revenge, but not before whispering the individual's name in her ear. After being chosen to lead the hunt for the rebel fleet, Zahra honored those lost on the Death Star by taking command of a Star Destroyer that was damaged in its destruction, recruiting a crew that consisted of others who had lost someone on the station.[3]

When Zahra failed to prevent the survivors of the Fourth Division from escaping her attack, she grew angry at Lieutenant Gorr, who stated the self-evident details of the situation. A human female, Zahra had black hair, blue eyes, and light skin.[1]

Skills and abilitiesEdit

Zahra: "Technician. Transfer control of one gun in one of our batteries to this station. I don't want to weaken our part of the blockade, but we can spare one gun. One shot."
Technician: "You…want manual control, Commander? But the automated targeting systems are much more effective than any—"
Gorr: "Corporal, are you insane? Do as you are ordered and move aside. You're about to see something remarkable."
―Zahra, an Imperial technician, and Lieutenant Gorr, on manually controlling a turbolaser[src]

Zahra was a skilled tactician and commander, developing tactics that she could use in battle. While attacking the Fourth Division of the Alliance Fleet, Zahra took control of one of her fleet's turbolasers, manually targeting and destroying an escaped rebel starfighter.[1]


"This ship—then called the Fortitude, was hit by a piece of Death Star wreckage. It survived, but suffered immense damage. The ship was to be scuttled. Recycled for scrap. But when Lord Vader asked me to spearhead he hunt for the remnants of the rebel armada, he offered me any vessel in the fleet as my flagship. I chose this one, brought it back to life and gave it a new name."
―Commander Zahra, on the Tarkin's Will[src]

Zahra commanded the Tarkin's Will, an Imperial II-class Star Destroyer, formerly known as the Fortitude, which had been severely damaged in the destruction of the Death Star. She did not wish to repair the damage the Star Destroyer had sustained, keeping it as a reminder of the attack.[3] She wore the uniform of the Imperial Military.[1]

Behind the scenesEdit

Zahra was introduced in Star Wars 1, a comic written by Charles Soule, illustrated by Jesús Saiz, and published by Marvel Comics[1] on January 1, 2020.[4]


Wookieepedia has 4 images related to Ellian Zahra.

Notes and referencesEdit

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