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"To dismiss propaganda as a lesser form of art is to deny a fundamental part of who we are."

Imperius Unitada ober Totallex was a pro-Imperial propaganda poster.

Propaganda was the dissemination of information, especially of a biased nature, for the purpose of promoting or injuring a political institution, cause or point of view. Propaganda could take many forms, from adverts, paintings, and posters, to films and audio recordings.

Various galactic governments and organizations relied on propaganda to gain popular support both in times of peace and war. In the Clone Wars, the Commission for the Protection of the Republic (COMPOR) produced artwork that favored the cause of the Galactic Republic over that of the Confederacy of Independent Systems, which in turn created anti-Republic propaganda. The successor of COMPOR, the Commission for the Preservation of the New Order (COMPNOR) used propaganda art to promote support for the reign of the Galactic Empire. However, propaganda also served as a tool for the Alliance to Restore the Republic, an organization that fought to restore democracy during the Galactic Civil War. In the New Republic Era, the First Order utilized propaganda to promote its image as the legitimate successor to the Empire, and therefore, painted the New Republic as an illegitimate government.


"Your weapons in this war are ships, and blasters, and armor. My weapon in this war is words. And even more important than words are images. Pictures depicting an artistic representation of reality. Facts are flexible, and these graphics point to the truth of which you speak even if they do not precisely portray them."
Ferric Obdur[2]
Whos Pulling the Strings

The purpose of propaganda was to influence public perception and support an agenda.

Through several techniques, propaganda tended to imply connections between two separate things, whether they were true or not. Examples of such techniques were readily found in the Office of Imperial Promotion, Galactic Truth, and Fact Correction, which sought to counter the influence of the New Republic during the last days of the Galactic Empire. Who's Pulling the Strings?, an Imperial poster that depicted two New Republic soldiers in the foreground, with a Hutt in the background, insinuated a connection between the New Republic and organized crime syndicates such as the Hutt Clan.[1] Likewise, a poster of dirty, ill-kept New Republic troops with flamethrowers burning down an Imperial Academy with screaming children in the windows, implied that the New Republic had no morality, and were no better than drunken thugs.[2]

While propaganda could smear or base libel on a group, planet or species, it could also promote or improve the image of those that created it, or whom the creator sought to exemplify. For example, one poster during the Galactic Civil War depicted two stormtroopers handing out fruit to a human family in need, implying that the Empire was generous, merciful and well-behaved.[2] Likewise, the propaganda poster Nothing Beats an Academy Education depicted several members of the Imperial armed forces standing triumphantly in the foreground, with text written in High Galactic encouraging potential recruits to join the Empire, with the warm colors, tone, and imagery suggesting that the Empire was strong, just, and brimming with opportunity.[1]

The creation of national holidays, such as Republic Day for the Galactic Republic, or Empire Day for the Galactic Empire, further sought to meld the boundaries of citizenship and patriotism. Likewise, statues, memorials, and medals such as the Distinguished Medal of Imperial Honor, Nova Star, or battle medals earned in service of a particular organization such as the Kalidor Crescent, further acted as propaganda to a particular state body or organization.[3][2] National anthems, such as "Glory of the Empire," flags, banners, newsreels, and other methods also existed to act as propaganda. By reporting on pro-Imperial news and events, the Empire was able to maintain an illusion of stability and security.[4]


Toys for children were also utilized for propaganda.

There also existed more subtle and less noticeable forms of propaganda, such as the creation of stormtrooper dolls for young children,[5] or a biased and distorted educational system, exemplified in the pro-Imperial class Current Events.[6] The class, like many others throughout history, held the ulterior motive of strengthening the connection between the state and childhood to mold the minds of younger generations, with the end result of forming loyal adherents to the body politic.

The Republic roundel and Imperial crest served as the symbols of the Galactic Republic and the Galactic Empire respectively. Likewise, the starbird symbol of the Alliance to Restore the Republic served both as a symbol of the organization, but also held special symbolic—and propaganda—value. Based off the legendary starbird, the symbol implied that like the creature of myth, the Alliance could never die, and that each death was merely another rebirth.[7]

However, propaganda was not guaranteed to succeed in its purpose just because it existed. Since sentient beings had the ability to dissect information and form independent conclusions, along with drawing upon prior knowledge, just as propaganda was easily created, it was also easily vandalized, destroyed, or simply ignored. As such, numerous organizations existed to curb, redact, or remove libelous or vandalized propaganda throughout the galaxy and force compliance. The rebel Sabine Wren was one such individual in the habit of vandalizing any Imperial propaganda posters she found by painting rebellious graffiti over them.[7]


"An artist need not be a soldier to be a warrior (although I've been both, I hesitate to say). In turbulent times, an artist uses expression and symbolism as weapons, transforming art into propaganda. There are scholars of art who reserve only the most scornful tones to utter that word. I am not one of them. Art is a reflection of civilization. So is war. Art in the service of war is doubly so."

For thousands of years, propaganda was created and destroyed to promote various interests and identities.[1] The painting Land & Sky security combating crime with diligence promoted the view that the Land & Sky Corporation's Security Bureau protected law and order in the Aakaash system, despite the reality being that many members of the security force dealt with pirates such as the Blue Dragon and took pleasure in handling slaves, which was illegal in both Galactic Republic and local laws. Occasionally, slaves were even killed for sport.[8] Eleven Star Marketing created the poster Settle the Outer Rim launched on the behalf of the Republic Ministry of Economic Development to spur interest in the Outer Rim Territories by appealing to the viewer's sense of adventurism and mystery.[1]

During the Clone Wars, both the Galactic Republic and Confederacy of Independent Systems embarked on large propaganda campaigns to rally support for the war. Early adverts for Count Dooku's Independent Movement for Self-Determination during the Separatist Crisis featured pamphlets drawn by Reena University's Ansibella Dellu entitled Count Dooku: Words of Truth. Later posters, such as 2,000 Senators sought to convince the public that the Galactic Senate was distant, dispassionate, and unworthy of their attention.[1] Likewise, the Separatist shadowfeed operation hijacked the Republic HoloNet to spread disinformation on Republic defeats and Separatists triumphs. As a result, the Commission for the Protection of the Republic (COMPOR) would be formed to counteract such efforts.[9]


The clone trooper (left) and battle droid (right), symbols of the Galactic Republic and Confederacy of Independent Systems, respectively.

Abandoning its initial interest in featuring the Jedi Order in its work, which could be seen in the work "Jedi Unite for Peace," COMPOR depicted the clone troopers as the Republic's primary defenders, ultimately turning the Grand Army of the Republic into an icon of Republic propaganda. One such example was the poster "Unite."[1] To the Confederacy, meanwhile, the clone troopers were seen as a slave army, with Dooku once proclaiming the Grand Army as proof of Jedi and Republic hypocrisy.[10] Beyond heralding its Separatist Droid Army as a force that would bring forth Separatist freedom,[1] the Confederacy regarded its use of battle droids as a more humane option for war:[10] in Separatist propaganda, droids were effectively a disposable, soulless force whose sacrifice was acceptable, especially in the name of avoiding organic deaths. The Republic, meanwhile, pushed propaganda that depicted Separatist droids as an existential threat to life itself. Overall, no matter whether the droid was seen as a lifeless defender of freedom or great threat to existence, droids themselves were never consulted.[1]

COMPOR's campaign featured Supreme Chancellor Sheev Palpatine as well, encouraging both the Senate and citizenry to rally around their leader in a time of war.[1] As the Empire rose, COMPOR was reorganized into the Commission for the Preservation of the New Order (COMPNOR), which took note when artistic media undermined Emperor Palpatine's government, and issued propaganda posters.[11] During the Galactic Civil War, the Galactic Empire made frequent use of propaganda to recruit new soldiers and snuff out any rebellious activities.[11] One such poster entitled Strength & Obedience sought to portray the Empire as a force for social order and stability. The Ministry of Information, headed by Pollux Hax, was tasked with muzzling the press.[12]

Join the SAGroup-poster

Imperial propaganda focused heavily on the military might of the Galactic Empire.

During Empire Day, as part of propaganda purposes for the Emperor and the state-run media of the Galactic Empire, Palpatine was altered to look as he did during the Clone Wars in a holo file depicting the Emperor's inauguration speech.[13][14] Leadership, Order, Power was a propaganda poster featured heavily on Vardos and Naboo, depicting Palpatine from prior to the Clone Wars.[15] Meanwhile, the Rebel Alliance, in its efforts against the Empire, issued propaganda showing Imperial stormtroopers to be poor shots.[16] Rebel pilots made use of colorful flight suits and symbols that would become synonymous with the idea of freedom.[17]

The New Republic crafted messages of hope, self-determination and inspiration following their victory at Endor, along with the distribution of holo-recordings that featured the destruction of the DS-2 Death Star II Mobile Battle Station, coupled with pre-recorded messages of hope delivered by none other than Leia Organa—survivor of the Disaster—to rally hearts and minds around the Republic.[3]

Legitimate Power

The First Order promoted itself as the Empire's successor.

The First Order trained its stormtroopers by, among other things, teaching them propaganda that resulted in a skewed, pro-Imperial view of history. FN-2187 was one stormtrooper who doubted such claims, and while lacking knowledge of galactic politics, his tendency to value friendship led him to help those in the Resistance above the hatred of the past.[18]

In addition to the behavioral conditioning of its soldiers, the First Order used propaganda to promote the idea of its legitimacy[1] as the successor of the Galactic Empire.[15] Like its predecessor, the First Order military was featured heavily in state propaganda. Additionally, the emphasis on the First Order's Imperial heritage was used to portray the New Republic as an illegitimate government. During the Cold War, the Resistance produced its own forms of propaganda to counter that of the First Order.[1] By taking on the old rebel pilot uniform and its symbols for its Resistance pilots, for example, the Resistance knowingly called upon that outfit's natural association with freedom and put it to use in its own struggle against the First Order.[17]


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