During the Clone Wars, the Talz species was discovered on Orto Plutonia, a native sentient species that is still living in near-prehistoric hunter-gatherer tribal societies. Contact with then is unavoidable since their existence was unknown when the local Republic base was established. By the Imperial era, however, they can be seen hanging out in Mos Eisley's cantinas.

This brings me to the general question: when it comes to newly discovered species that have not reached the space age on their own (ie primitive), does the Republic/Empire have policies, tenets, laws, whatever dictating how they should be handled?

I ask this because many other science fiction spacefaring civilisations have such policies in place.

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    Eh yeah... it's called the Prime Directive. Janeway is always going on about it. – Daft Mar 3 '16 at 9:04
  • That's Star Trek – thegreatjedi Mar 3 '16 at 10:18
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    Nonsense, how else would the Empire have been able to deal with the Borg? – Broklynite Mar 3 '16 at 10:52
  • If Gamor can put a boar on Pazzaab.. – Vince Scalia Mar 3 '16 at 19:12
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    Would you consider the Ewoks of Endor to be a "native sentient species that is still living in near-prehistoric hunter-gatherer tribal societies". If so, it seems there attitude is, "Screw it, let's build a base here". – Skooba Mar 18 '16 at 17:07

I am going to turn my comment into an answer...

TL;DR No official policy in known, but actions seen would suggests that the Empire is not concerned with their advanced technology being known to "lesser evolved" species.

In Episode VI: Return of the Jedi we see various members of the Rebel Alliance (Han, Leia, et al) embark on a mission to the Forest Moon of Endor to destroy the shield generator protecting the Death Star II. During this mission the native species of Ewoks were encountered.

UPDATE: Wookieepedia suggests that the Empire did not care at all about the natives:

In order to make way for the complex, an Ewok village would be razed by Imperial troops, leading to strained Imperial—Ewok relations

Wookieepedia entry for Endor

I would say that the Ewoks can be classified as "native sentient species that is still living in near-prehistoric hunter-gatherer tribal societies" based on the their attire, weapons, structures, and society.

ewok warrior ewok shaman

Construction on the Death Star II began in 0 BBY as our own sources tell us: Were there two Death Stars in construction at the same time? The Battle of Endor occurred in 4 ABY. This would mean the Empire would have been in contact with the Ewoks for +/- 4 years, depending on when the base for the shield generator was built.

The Empire is not shown to have take any protective measure to hide the base from the Ewoks as it can be clearly seen above the tree line.

shield base shield dish

We also see that while the Ewoks are primitive they show great intelligence and ingenuity when building the elaborate traps to defend against the Empire. Also, the Ewoks may have had previous interactions with the local detachment of Imperial troops as we see an Ewok jump on a speeder bike and quickly figure out how to engage it.

ewok speeder ewok flyer ewok trap

While no official policy has been seen or heard of, this interaction with the Ewoks would suggest that the Empire is not concerned with their superior technology being seen by "lesser species". One would have to wonder if the intent is rule the entire galaxy why they would be concerned...

Compare this with Star Trek who mission is essentially to "observe and report"; the Prime Directive makes sense in their universe.

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  • The Ewoks were a post-contact civilisation long before the Empire arrived. – Valorum Apr 7 '16 at 13:33
  • @Richard It is a great point and I do not have extensive knowledge of the EU. If there was evidence of advanced towns/colonies prior to the shield base it would change the answer but I still think the overall answer of the "the Empire isn't concerned" stays the same; Ewoks are just the example I am most familiar with. I am going more "interaction" rather than "contact". – Skooba Apr 7 '16 at 13:40
  • You're not wrong. There don't seem to be any pre-contact societies in the Star Wars galaxy. FTL is so prevalent that pretty much every planet has a history of contact going back thousands of years. – Valorum Apr 7 '16 at 13:46
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    The best evidence of contact is the fact that C-3PO speaks Ewok. – Valorum Apr 7 '16 at 13:47
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    C3PO's language module had the capability to analyse a new language and construct the ability to know it - he's not restricted to the original 6 million forms of communications that came in the packaging. However, Ewok worship of C3PO can be interpreted as archaeological evidence of contact with ancient droids, leaving impressions of powerful shiny beings from the sky above, passed down through the generations by oral tradition. It's easy to see how droids could have achieved godhood among primitives that way. – thegreatjedi Apr 7 '16 at 16:03

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