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In The Mandalorian, how is the Empire still allowed to exist when The New Republic is the ruling force within the galaxy?

Is it to do with each one controlling different parts of the galaxy and the two co-exist as different nations?

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    I'm not up to date with The Mandalorian (quite a bit behind actually) but so far my impression is that it is the remnants of the Empire i.e. not officially the Empire but those that followed it still following what it was trying to keep it alive.
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Dec 15, 2020 at 12:07
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    if it's anything like the pre-Disney lore the empire split up in several smaller empires ruled by former high ranking Imperials who fight amongst themselves claiming to be the true successor to the empire.
    – A.bakker
    Dec 15, 2020 at 12:35

2 Answers 2

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Minimal to no bureaucracy coupled with empowered regional governors allowed for Imperial power to exist despite the end of the Empire.

While the core of the Empire was destroyed, the Empire always seems to have operated in some kind of distributed — and independently managed — bureaucracy that could do what they wished to without answering directly to the Empire all the time

The accepted answer here is solid, but the answer — at least in my mind — is far simpler and was stated clearly in the first Star Wars (1977) in this exchange about the state of the Imperial Senate; bold emphasis is mine:

Governor Tarkin: The Imperial Senate will no longer be of any concern to us. I've just received word that the Emperor has dissolved the council permanently. The last remnants of the Old Republic have been swept away.

General Tagge: That’s impossible! How will the Emperor maintain control without the bureaucracy?

Governor Tarkin: The regional governors now have direct control over their territories. Fear will keep the local systems in line. Fear of this battle station.

So even before the Empire rose to some true source of centralized power, there clearly were regional Governors who — while not initially fully Imperial in their identification — they sure as hell were fascist prior to Emperor Palpatine suddenly being ruler of it all.

To me, the Empire in Star Wars always seemed to be a lot like the Axis powers back in the mid 20th Century during World War II. Except on larger scale with the same tailor and better branding focus.

One could argue — for example — that Adolf Hitler was the leader of the Axis powers, it acted more like a cooperative of nations unified in hate. Hitler, Mussolini and Hirohito worked together — and supported each other — but were also allowed to do whatever they wanted on their own… Just as long as nobody crossed each other or sabotaged their efforts.

So in The Mandalorian you have people like Moff Gideon who rose through the Empire to be a Moff, but he clearly knows how to act shrewdly and continue the Imperial mission well past its expiration date. Positive there must be others like him who have enough resources to keep their little bit of the Empire alive.

And I’m not really fluent in the ups and downs of post-Empire life as present Legends world and such, but I am sure that when Death Star II brew up after the Battle of Endor, lots of Imperials of all ranks just disappeared into the normal world and saw it as a relief.

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The Empire doesn't really exist as a coherent entity anymore at the time of The Mandalorian. The bulk of their forces were defeated at the Battle of Jakku (which we see the wreckage of decades later in The Force Awakens) and what was left of their government signed a peace treaty with the New Republic, effectively disbanding the Empire.

However, the galaxy's a big place and there were a lot of fanatical Imperials who didn't want to surrender. Some of them would go on to form the First Order but at the time of The Mandalorian (9 ABY, about four years after Jakku) many of them are still hiding out in the relatively-lawless Outer Rim, where the show takes place.

A lot of this is established in books and comics that fill in the gap after Return of the Jedi but the show is consistent with it. In "Chapter 1", Mando is reluctant to take Imperial credits because they're not worth much and everyone's surprised to see Stormtroopers. When we do see Imperials, they're usually in hidden bases or staying mobile to avoid the New Republic finding them.

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    That was also the period of Ex-Imperial war lords too, wasn’t it? War lords who took large swaths of outer rim territories for themselves where the NR had no reach? Dec 16, 2020 at 3:37
  • @MissouriSpartan - In Legends canon, yes. Dec 19, 2020 at 8:11

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