In Return of the Jedi the Ewoks join the Rebels in the fight against the Empire. Into the battle the Ewoks bring a multitude of weapons: stone axes, bow and arrows, hang gliders, swinging log smashers and catapults, to name a few. Why did the Ewoks have all this equipment, seemingly lying around?

Had the Ewoks already been planning an attack against the Imperials when the Rebels landed? Or do Ewok tribes wage war against each other regularly, and all the weapons we see were left over from the last one, or in preparation of the next one?

The attack against the Death Star 2 appears to take place over a relatively short period of time, so it seems unlikely that the Rebels had assisted in constructing them, but perhaps the movie didn't fully portray the time that had passed?

Since the Ewoks appear to live in a very peaceful forest that is relatively devoid of animal life, has any reason ever been given for the Ewoks having all those tools of war?


3 Answers 3


It doesn't seem like it was particularly unusual for Ewoks to have an abundance of weapons around. The forest moon of Endor was apparently not as quiet and peaceful as it appeared during Return of the Jedi, nor was it relatively devoid of animal life (as hinted at by the trap Chewbacca got caught in).

Arrows, spears, poison darts, and elaborate traps were used by the Ewoks when hunting, and also when defending themselves against predators.

The Imperials were not the first alien species the Ewoks had encountered. In Ewoks: The Battle for Endor, which takes place just prior to Return of the Jedi, a group of marauders crash-landed on the Forest Moon. The Ewoks were attacked by the marauders, and fought back.

There are other mentions in the expanded universe of Ewoks battling with other species, including indigenous rivals such as the Duloks (who had a reputation as warlike, agressive raiders).

Wookieepedia and theforce.net also reference the log-swinging traps, calling them tek swee or "head hitters", and saying they were normally used as defense against Gorax, but I can find no reference for that claim.

  • 9
    It would also make a hell of a lot of sense for a native species with tribal structures (as the Ewoks have) to war between tribes from time to time. It would be stranger if they never warred against other tribes, honestly.
    – Jeff
    Apr 26, 2013 at 13:51

Ewoks cartoon says it all.

The setting is a bit before the movie and the Ewoks are protecting themselves against Tulgah who are a rival species.


The answer is simple ,the Ewoks have been at war with their swamp dwelling cousins the Duloks ,so they were battle hardened long before the empire showed up.

  • 1
    Adding references would make this a far better answer.
    – Valorum
    Nov 7, 2014 at 9:19

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