Tarkin oversaw the construction and operation of the first Death Star, and did so with cold authority. To test the battle station's destructive power and to coax information out of Princess Leia, Tarkin decides to destroy her home planet of Alderaan.
The Death Star was the Empire’s ultimate weapon: a moon-sized space station with the ability to destroy an entire planet. But the Emperor and Imperial officers like Grand Moff Tarkin underestimated the tenacity of the Rebel Alliance, who refused to bow to this technological terror…
Princess Leia Organa was one of the Rebel Alliance’s greatest leaders, fearless on the battlefield and dedicated to ending the tyranny of the Empire. Daughter of Padmé Amidala and Anakin Skywalker, sister of Luke Skywalker, and with a soft spot for scoundrels, Leia ranks among the galaxy’s great heroes.
Once a heroic Jedi Knight, Darth Vader was seduced by the dark side of the Force, became a Sith Lord, and led the Empire’s eradication of the Jedi Order. He remained in service of the Emperor -- the evil Darth Sidious -- for decades, enforcing his Master’s will and seeking to crush the fledgling Rebel Alliance. But there was still good in him…
Discovered as a slave on Tatooine by Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker had the potential to become one of the most powerful Jedi ever, and was believed by some to be the prophesied Chosen One who would bring balance to the Force. A hero of the Clone Wars, Anakin was caring and compassionate, but also had a fear of loss that would prove to be his downfall.
Scheming, powerful, and evil to the core, Darth Sidious restored the Sith and destroyed the Jedi Order. Living a double life, Sidious was in fact Palpatine, a Naboo Senator and phantom menace. He slowly manipulated the political system of the Galactic Republic until he was named Supreme Chancellor -- and eventually Emperor -- ruling the galaxy through fear and tyranny.
If ever one needed an example of the irredeemable evil that was the Empire, turn to the shattered remains of Alderaan. An influential world, Alderaan was represented in the waning days of the Republic by such venerated politicians as Bail Antilles and Bail Organa. A peaceful world, Alderaan was bereft of weaponry in an era of galactic strife. It was not without spirit, however. Alderaan was one of the earliest supporters of the Alliance to Restore the Republic, though its officials prudently kept all ties to the Rebellion secret. Despite such discretion, the Empire knew it to be a haven of Rebel activity, and Grand Moff Tarkin targeted the beautiful world for reprisal as soon as the Death Star was operational. The massive primary weapon of the battle station obliterated Alderaan, leaving only a lifeless asteroid field behind.