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Pre-Disney, the Mandalorians were a warrior people living on the planet Mandalor and several other locations. They were the instigators of the Mandalorian War.

From Wookieepedia:

Mandalorian was a demonym that referred to the people of the planet Mandalore. Mandalorians also lived on the moon of Mandalore, Concordia, Kalevala, Krownest and the planet Concord Dawn.

But in the Clone Wars, Duchess Satine made a point on more than one occasion to point out that the warrior past of Mandalore has been replaced by a more pacifist position

Prime Minister Almec in The Mandalore Plot (S2E12)

Master Kenobi, Mandalore's violent past is behind us. All of our warriors were exiled to our moon, Concordia. They died out years ago.

Duchess Satine in The Mandalore Plot (S2E12)

No Mandalorian would engage in such violence.

We are lead to believe that only a small group known as "Death Watch" wishes to return to the warrior past, which you get in a discussion between Duchess Satine, Obi-Wan, and Minister Almec in The Mandalore Plot (S2E12)

Not everyone on Mandalore believes that our commitment to peace is a sign of progress. There is a group that calls itself Death Watch. I imagine these are the renegades you're looking for. They idolize violence and the warrior ways of the past.

But jumping ahead a few years to Star Wars Rebels, the pacifist position of the Mandalorians is virtually ignored

  • Mandalorians fought in the Clone Wars (Fenn Rau was specifically mentioned as fighting and also training pilots)
  • Through out Season 3, the Mandalorian warrior heritage is very prevalent, and the Rebels specifically target them to join their cause since.
  • Several episodes paint the Mandalorians as strong warriors, which seems odd given they were pacifists not 15 years before
    • Imperial Super Commandos (S3E07)
    • Legacy of Mandalore (S3E16)
    • Zero Hour (S3E21 & E22)

So is there an explanation for the change in the Mandalorians so they are seen as warriors again? It seems odd that a society that supported a pacifist leader, remained neutral in a galactic war, and apparently had cast off it's warrior past to become sought after as warriors 15 years later. And yet, despite being pacifists and neutral in the war, had soldiers actively participating in the war.

Is the concept of the pacifists Mandalorian something that only Satine believed? Or is this an attempt to retcon a "mistake" in the Clone Wars? Or is there another explanation.

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    Personally I think the "mistake" is just that the inhabitants of the planets have the same name as the members of the "cult". The death watch seemed to me like the recent expression of the mandalorian "cult". With the fate of the duchess I can see the mandalorians embracing their old ways again (thus the cult and the inhabitants name merging into one again). But that is only a personal view and not backed up by any infos. So will be interesting if I'm correct there or not. – Thomas Jun 4 '17 at 18:50
  • Mandalorians live in Kalevala? They might have mentioned that in one of its 50 songs! (Also, duchess = wife of a duke; Dutchess = woman from the Netherlands.) – Janus Bahs Jacquet Jun 5 '17 at 4:17
  • Seeing as how Dave Filoni was heavily involved in both series, it's unlikely to be an objective "mistake" – NKCampbell Apr 17 at 19:44
  • @JanusBahsJacquet completely missed that comment. You could have edited at the time. – psubsee2003 Apr 19 at 17:07
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    Looks like Duchess Satine Kryze led puppet goverment.

New canon erased lots of prior Manadalorian history, but there are two certain facts: 1. Mandalorians were proud warrior culture that waged war against Jedi(and presumably Republic) 2. They lost that war. Since victor dictates terms, Manadaloians were probably forced to disarm and shun lots of their traditional beliefs and customs. We know that when Obi-Wan was Padawan, he and then teenage Duchess spent year together during civil war . Ultimately, pacifist New Mandalorians won with the help of the Republic. Satine's rule lasted as long Republic could support her - when the Clone War started her regime was overthrown and she lost her life.

It is quite unlikely that warriors like Manadalorians would willingly elect inexperienced teenage girl to lead them. Far likely explanation is that they simply bowed to stronger power, and let Satine rule but in the shadows quietly despised pacifism, waiting for right moment to return to their old ways.

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    i upvoted your post as it seems to be the best explanation, but still doesn't really cover the whole story. If Satine's rule was so fragile since it was a puppet government, why would Death Watch need so much help to overthrow her? She managed to keep control until several years after the Clone Wars started, and seemed to be popular (although that "popular" part is debatable since dictators appeared to be popular by staging public events with supporters only) – psubsee2003 Jun 6 '17 at 0:19
  • @psubsee2003 It is a been a while since I watched, but as I recall Death Watch didn't have much help. They had Maul and Savage Opress, and help from some criminal gangs. Considering Death Watch was just another terrorist (or revolutionary :P ) group, they fairly easily toppled Satine's government. Same thing happened lots of times in real world, unpopular regimes endured fairly long and then they were "suddenly" overthrown . Bear in mind that even unpopular regimes are not completely without supporters, and you cannot just wish them away. Any revolution has to be well organized. – rs.29 Jun 6 '17 at 4:19
  • @rs.29 I fear that a single force user can make QUITE a difference there.....and two are enough (see what damage anakin and obi wan did and that most of the time just on their own or with a small squad of non force users). They slaughtered armies! So I fear 2 so powerful force users and even a few squads worth of troops are enough to overthrow almost any planet except coruscant. – Thomas Jun 6 '17 at 16:41
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    @Thomas Maul and Savage could assassinate someone, but they far from being able to subdue whole population of Mandalore against their own will . Palpatine killed Savage and captured Maul, but still Mandalorians did not get back to pacifist ways of Duchess Satine. Instead, when Maul got back, large proportion of Mandalorians supported him against Republic starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Siege_of_Mandalore – rs.29 Jun 6 '17 at 16:54
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It is important to remember that while Duchess Satine Kryze led a government that was officially pacifist, not all Mandalorians agreed with the policy, and they are a society that was historically violent. From within, Death Watch was created, as was The Shadow Collective. These violent factions eventually lead open rebellion against the pacifist government.

While Darth Maul was ultimately unsuccessful in his takeover of Mandalore, the planet was eventually taken over by the Empire - the days of a pacifist Mandalorian people were now gone.

  • I get that but seems odd for a "warrior people" who seemed to relish battle (based on the Mandalorians from KOTOR era) to support an openly pacifist leader during a galactic conflict, and not run to join the war on either side, but then to turn around and be a warrior people again in the Imperial Era. – psubsee2003 Jun 4 '17 at 18:55
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    Be careful comparing them against KOTOR-era anything. That's no longer canon. – phantom42 Jun 4 '17 at 18:58
  • Fair point but even without the KOTOR reference, in canon, Mandalorians seem to be coveted as warriors, except during the Clone Wars, even though it seems they still were. That's the inconsistency that makes me wonder – psubsee2003 Jun 4 '17 at 19:01
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    And how is it shocking that a violent society who was told for a number of years that they weren't allowed to be, would be happy to be able to rejoin the battle once again? Especially when many of them did not agree with the policy to begin with. – phantom42 Jun 4 '17 at 19:01
  • That's reasonable. I guess I saw it from the perspective that the society didn't overthrow Satine immediately, and Death Watch needed multiple attempts and a lot of help to finally remove her from power. Which makes me wonder whether the common person really supported the warrior culture or not. – psubsee2003 Jun 4 '17 at 19:09
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Conflict between Karen Traviss and Dave Filoni is the reason why this inconsistency exists. See, Karen Traviss is an author responsible for a very large chunk of Mandalorian lore particularly as it relates to Mandalorian language and culture and the world of Mandalore itself. Dave Filoni had his own ideas about it and instead of sticking to what was established, he just ran with his own ideas. It would be simple if one was retconned and the other allowed to be canon in either Disney Canon or Legends, but the core issue if i remember correctly is that both are canon to at least Legends at the same time. I may be misremembering, it has been a while since i last read up on the issue, but thats my explanation. I know there are some attempts to compromise in a way that allows both to exist at the same time but i don't really think they are that successful in doing so.

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    It would be nice if you could edit in some sources for these facts :) – Jenayah Dec 17 '18 at 20:03
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    This is really some interesting stuff. As @Jenayah suggests, some sources would be great if you can find them. They would make this a great "out-of-universe" answer – psubsee2003 Dec 17 '18 at 20:35
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As much as I understood it there was no real inconsistency there though. The mandalorians were warriors in the past even fighting and sometimes winning against the Jedi and constructing the darksaber.

Then they were defeated and pressed into peace but still they were warriors until Satiles rule came and the pacificsts came into power banishing those who did not want to give up fighting.

Still though it could be seen time and again that they were warriors at hearth even Satile in one episode took up arms....but at the last moment refrained from killing due to her beliefs.

It can easily be seen that with the defeat of the mandalorian regime at the hands of the 2 darksiders and their warrior compatriots the power of the peaceful Mandalorians was shattered as were their beliefs at that and Satiles death.

Then they also saw the republic fall and a mighty Empire emerge that was not too unsimilar to their own warriorlike history. Thus they were shown that peace was weak....and only true warriors were strong time and again.

These two things together can easily be enough to make the Mandalorians throw away that which they thought (peace) and did not work and embrace that which they had and worked for them for a very long time (being warriors).

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TL;DR TCW is propaganda making Mandos look weak, but Rebels shows this was never true.

Remember, TCW was largely written like propaganda from the 'front, and heavily skewed toward Republic perspective. The Jedi are fearless, selfless heroes. The Clones are all fearless soldiers (we see their humanity, of course, but it takes quite a few seasons before we see them as they were in the Traviss novels). The Mandalorians are an emasculated race, living like they deserve on a planet destroyed by their own lust for war.

Rebels is written more from the perspective of Rebels, but much less like a propaganda piece. Mandalorians are fearsome warriors (and apparently have always been?) and this whole "Pacifist" craze we heard so much about in TCW has completely evaporated in 5-10 years? I don't buy it.

I think TCW wanted to make the clones look special so they downplayed Mandos (and maybe Disney didn't want to play up the galaxy's favorite conquerors while getting kids to shell out money) but Rebels established that there were always Mandos as they were.

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    Hi, welcome to SF&F! This is an interesting answer, but reads too much as personal opinion, and refusing to acknowledge Disney canon isn't a great way to start. Perhaps you can rewrite this to fit better with accepted canon sources? – DavidW Apr 17 at 19:38

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