Battle of Yavin

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"This will be a day long remembered. It has seen the end of Kenobi; it will soon see the end of the rebellion."
Darth Vader to Grand Moff Wilhuff Tarkin before the battle[src]

The Battle of Yavin was a major battle of the Galactic Civil War that led to the destruction of the First Death Star and was one of the Rebellion's first major victories, with the first one being the capture of the Death Star plans.


"Any attack made by the Rebels against this station would be a useless gesture, no matter what technical data they've obtained."
Admiral Conan Motti[src]

During the Battle of Scarif, Jyn Erso managed to steal detailed plans and design specifications for the Imperial battle station known as the Death Star and transmit them to the Rebel Alliance fleet above; these plans soon made their way to Princess Leia.[16] Imperial forces under the command of Darth Vader soon captured Princess Leia and the crew of the Tantive IV.[1]

Princess Leia was taken prisoner aboard the Death Star by Darth Vader. The Princess soon was rescued from captivity by an unlikely alliance of the smuggler Han Solo, Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi, a young farmboy from Tatooine named Luke Skywalker and a Wookiee named Chewbacca. The group, in possession of the Death Star plans, fled to the Rebel base on Yavin 4—closely pursued by the battle station.[1]

The battleEdit

"Lock S-foils in attack position."
―Red Leader[src]

An analysis of the plans provided by Princess Leia identified a weakness in the battle station: a small thermal exhaust port leading to the main reactor which would allow access to a point that could (due to sabotage of the design by unwilling engineer Galen Erso[16]) cause a chain reaction that would destroy the battle station.[1]

Rebel pilots were briefed by General Jan Dodonna on the plan. The Death Star's defenses were designed for a direct, large-scale assault. By using small, one-man fighters, the Rebels would slip through the Death Star's main defenses, maneuver down a narrow trench leading to the exhaust port, and insert proton torpedoes through the exhaust port.[1]

Yavin dogfight

Dogfight between X-Wings and TIE fighters over the Death Star surface.

With the Death Star approaching, Y-wings from Gold Squadron and X-wings from Red Squadron were dispatched to carry out the attack plan. A total of 30 ships were deployed in the assault on the Death Star: 8 Y-wings as part of Gold Squadron and 22 X-wings, some part of Red Squadron. The deployment of Imperial TIE fighters served to devastate the Rebel attackers, destroying them with far more speed and efficiency than the station's weapon emplacements had been able to.[1]

Some time into the battle, Imperial officer Jude Edivon aboard the Death Star identified the threat of the Rebels' attack strategy, and attempted to warn her superiors of the danger. However, Grand Moff Tarkin ignored the warning and refused to evacuate.[15] Meanwhile, Darth Vader himself decided to lead a squadron of TIE fighters to destroy the remaining Rebel fighters.[1]

The first attack run was performed by a trio of Y-wings from Gold Squadron. Led by Jon "Dutch" Vander, the three Y-Wings were shot down by Darth Vader. A second trench run was performed by a trio of X-wings from Red Squadron led by Garven Dreis. Dreis was able to fire off a shot at the exhaust port, but his proton torpedoes missed their mark. Before being shot down by Darth Vader, Dreis ordered another attack run.[1]

Following the final command of Red Leader, Luke Skywalker led the final attempt with Wedge Antilles and his old friend, Biggs Darklighter, as wingmen. Rushing down the trench at full throttle, they found themselves being tailed by Darth Vader and his fighters.[1]

Vader personally damaged Antilles' fighter and destroyed Darklighter's X-wing, but had difficulty destroying Skywalker. To Vader's surprise, one of his wingmen was shot down beside him. Han Solo, believed to have abandoned the Rebels prior to the assault, unexpectedly returned to assist Skywalker in his most desperate moment.[1]


The destruction of the Death Star.

Momentarily distracted by the intervention, Vader's remaining wingman attempted to protect Vader but collided with his ship, both spiralling himself into the side of the trench and knocking Vader away from the Death Star, allowing Skywalker to fire the shot that destroyed the Death Star.[1]


"Great shot, kid! That was one in a million!"
―Han Solo to Luke Skywalker[src]

Skywalker, Solo, and the surviving Rebel fighters returned to Yavin, where they held a celebration ceremony and awarded the pair with medals for their achievement in saving the Rebellion.[1] Darth Vader, the sole Imperial survivor of the battle, was recovered in his damaged TIE Advanced x1 by Imperial pilots Ciena Ree and Berisse Sai.[15]

Thane Kyrell and the other Imperials stationed at the abandoned Rebel base on Dantooine during the battle were cut off from communication with Coruscant after the Death Star was destroyed. Unconfirmed rumors spread through the ranks that the new weapon was gone. Early on, these rumors were dismissed as an Imperial trap to lure the Rebels out of hiding.[15]

The destruction of the Death Star caused chaos within the Imperial Ranks, leading to deliberate oversights on internal investigations and the rapid promotion of many young officers and lieutenants such as Ciena Ree to replace the higher-ranked officers killed on the Death Star. [15]

Eventually, the Rebels were forced to leave the site of their victory, fleeing the Empire once again.[17] In order to capitalize on the Empire's weakness following the destruction of the Death Star, the Rebels began to conduct dozens of raids against Imperial targets to weaken the now-vulnerable Empire. In addition to attacks carried out on the shipyards of Kuat and a supply base on Imdaar, a Rebel team composed of Leia Organa, Han Solo and Luke Skywalker assaulted and destroyed the Empire's largest armament factory on Cymoon 1, severely undermining Imperial military production.[18]

Six years before the destruction of the Hosnian system, an unofficial political faction in the New Republic's Galactic Senate known to admire the Galactic Empire's rule, the Centrists, questioned the official New Republic historical accounts of the Battle of Yavin and the Galactic Civil War. They believed that the fact that Luke Skywalker destroyed the Death Star was false and rather thought that the destruction of the Death Star was caused by an Imperial traitor and not by the Rebel Alliance.[19]

Behind the scenesEdit

In a Korean webcomic released in 2015 and written and drawn by Hong Jac Ga, the Battle of Yavin is often referred to as the Miracle of Yavin.[20]


Non-canon appearancesEdit


Notes and referencesEdit

Galactic Civil War
Galactic timeline

Previous: Early rebellion against the Galactic Empire · Lothal insurgency · Jedi Purge · Jedha insurgency

Concurrent: Ryloth Insurgency

Next: Amaxine warrior crisis

Battles of the Galactic Civil War
0 BBY Scarif · Tatooine (I) · Death Star · Yavin
0 ABY Taanab · Alderaan survivors · Giju · Llanic · Denon · Pasher
Devaron · Cymoon 1 · Tatooine (II) · Monsua Nebula · Nar Shaddaa
Vrogas Vas · Coruscant (I) · Sunspot Prison · Ghost Moon
Harbinger · Tureen VII · Skorii-Lei (II)
1 ABY Mid Rim Retreat (Haidoral Prime · Coyerti · Chonsetta system
Redhurne system)
3 ABY Rebel flotillla · Hoth (I) · Cloud City (I) · Cloud City (II) · Operation Ringbreaker (Mardona III · Obumubo · Najan-Rovi · Nakaia · Naator
Xagobah · Kuliquo belt) · Inyusu Tor · Operation Yellow Moon
4 ABY Hudalla system · Tatooine (III) · Endor (I) · Coruscant (II) · Coruscant (III) · Endor (II) · Cawa City · Operation: Cinder (Naboo) · Tayron
Iron Blockade (Anoat (I) · The Crypt · Mataou · Hoth (II) · Anoat (II))
Malastare · Akiva (I) · Naalol · Geonosis · Uyter · Sevarcos · Akiva (II) · Bespin
5 ABY Vetine · Hyborean Moon · Vorlag · Wild Space · Nag Ubdur (Govneh Ridge · Binjai-Tin) · Arkanis · Kuat · Kashyyyk · Chandrila
Naboo Sieges · Jakku
Related topics and articles
Dragon Void Run · Galactic Empire · Hutt Clan · Jedi · The rebellion · Ivarujar · Zeitooine
Rebel Alliance · Sith · New Republic · Death Star · Death Star II
Imperial Senate · The Disaster · Royal Award Ceremony · Funeral of Anakin Skywalker · Liberation Day · Imperial-Republic peace talks · Taris · Galactic Concordance

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