The Clone Wars Rewatch: Becoming “Defenders of Peace” Has a Price

The Lurmen have a choice to make when Separatist forces visit their colony with a new weapon.

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, and the all-new episodes coming thanks to #CloneWarsSaved, we’re undertaking a full chronological rewatch of the five original seasons, The Lost Missions, and the theatrical release. We’d be honored if you would join us and share your thoughts on the award-winning series.

18: “Defenders of Peace”(Season One, Episode 14)

“When surrounded by war, one must eventually choose a side.”

A scene from "Defenders of Peace."

Synopsis:

Separatist General Lok Durd arrives to test a devastating weapon, and the leader of the Lurmen, Tee Watt Kaa, and his people must decide whether they will lay down to the Separatists or fight with the Jedi to defend their village.

A scene from "Defenders of Peace."

Analysis:

War is complex, with both sides in the conflict arguably convinced of their own righteousness. We’ve already explored those trapped in between, the innocent bystanders caught in the crossfire when war comes to their peaceful planet. But what of those whose own beliefs prevent them from even defending their homes?

Safely ensconced in neutral space, the leader of the Lurmen, Tee Watt Kaa, clings to the belief that because they have done nothing to invite trouble, both the Separatists and the Jedi should leave them in peace. However, practicing peaceful coexistence does not guarantee others will abide by those rules.

A scene from "Defenders of Peace."

The Jedi, peacekeepers in their own right, will let the Lurmen be (although they have caused their own disruptions) even as the aliens refuse to continue sheltering their wounded soldier Anakin.

A scene from "Defenders of Peace."

In contrast, the Separatists have no respect for life, as evidenced by Lok Durd barking “Ransack this dung heap!” upon arrival. It’s no surprise, then, that he sees the peaceful Maridun colonists as test subjects for a new weapon capable of wiping out organic life, causing mass extinctions, and leaving his own droves of mindless battle droids unscathed. The droids, just like the weapon, are programmed for only violence.

A scene from "Defenders of Peace."

But both Tee Watt Kaa and Wag Too are right, from a certain point of view.

The problem with being so set in tradition, so strong-willed and unbending, is that Tee Watt Kaa is prepared to consign his people to extinction rather than compromise on what he holds to be true. That’s an admirable stance to an extent, but it’s hard to appreciate when the consequence is that it gets you killed.

A scene from "Defenders of Peace."

By taking action, even in the small way of helping the Jedi in defense of their village, Wag Too goes against the pacifist values that are the fabric of his culture. It saves the lives of the Lurmen, but at what cost?

Intel:

  • If you can read Aurebesh, you’ll find that the Separatist shield generator is helpfully stenciled with one simple word: “Caution.”

What did you think of the episode? Tell us in the comments below and share on social with #CloneWarsRewatch!

Next up: Come back Thursday when Anakin and Obi-Wan visit a desolate ice world to investigate the disappearance of a clone security force in “Trespass.”

Associate Editor Kristin Baver is a writer and all-around sci-fi nerd who always has just one more question in an inexhaustible list of curiosities. Sometimes she blurts out “It’s a trap!” even when it’s not. Want to talk more about The Clone Wars? Hop on Twitter and tell @KristinBaver what you thought about today’s episode.

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