Star Wars Offers New Information on the Origins of the First Order

Star Wars: The Force Awakens introduced fans to a new threat. With the Empire fallen, the First Order emerged. We now know that the First Order's leader, Supreme Leader Snoke, was a puppet created by the deposed Emperor Palpatine. However, the sequel trilogy never covered the group's origin. The new reference volume titled The Star Wars Book from DK -- written by Star Wars experts Pablo Hidalgo, Dan Zehr, and Cole Horton -- sheds new light on how the First Order first formed. The book confirms what the sequel trilogy already established about the group: its military force was born from the remnants of the Galactic Empire that fled to the Unknown Regions after the New Republic took control of the galaxy.

According to the book, "We know that the military might of the First Order was built up in the Unknown Regions by the escaping Imperial leadership in the decades after the Battle of Jakku." However, that's the military side of the First Order. There's a political aspect as well.

The book reveals that "The First Order also had its start inside the New Republic." First Order agents created "a political stalemate, forcing systems that fear losing control of their autonomy to break away from the New Republic - in a coalition called the First Order."

If that sounds familiar, it should. It's similar to the tactic Palpatine used to destroy the Old Republic. Palpatine manipulated events from the shadows, sowing discord. These machinations eventually led to a faction breaking away from the Republic and the looming threat of a new war. If things went well, Palpatine would have seized the opportunity for a new unifying force to step into that vacuum left by the New Republic. Palpatine has, it seems, only one move.

Kylo Ren didn't realize that his master, Snoke, was but a political façade holding sway only until Palpatine's return. Even Snoke may not have understood his role in the plan.

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"It's possible Snoke himself may not know his true nature," the book reads. "Snoke is a strandcast -- an artificial genetic construct concocted by the resurrected Darth Sidious to be his proxy in power. Snoke has free will, but his actions and goals are still orchestrated by Sidious. Through Snoke, Sidious sidesteps the tradition of a dark-side apprentice slaying his master to ascend, which happens when Kylo Ren betrays Snoke and slices him in two."

The Star Wars Book is on sale now.