- "This, my friends.This is our rebellion."
- ―Senator Mon Mothma
In 4 BBY, the Rebel fleet dispatched three CR90 corvettes to rescue the rebel cell Spectres during a skirmish above Mustafar. The corvettes destroyed several TIE fighters before spiriting the Spectres away into space. The Spectres soon learned that they were one cell among many others. Later elements of the rebel fleet ambushed an Imperial convoy and stole several deflector shield generators. While hiding in deep space, the Phoenix Squadron's ships came under attack from the Sith Lord Darth Vader, who destroyed several A-wings and the Squadron's flagship Phoenix Home. Despite these losses, the rebels managed to flee into hyperspace before Imperial reinforcements arrived.
When the former Clone Captain Rex joined the rebellion, he supplied them with information on the location of former Republic bases in the Outer Rim Territories and some Mandalorian ones. Later, the rebel fleet made two attempts to breach the Imperial blockade of Ibaar. After losing a corvette, the rebel pilot Hera Syndulla managed to break through using a prototype B-wing starfighter. As a result, she was promoted to Phoenix Leader. Later, the rebel fleet was forced to abandon their facilities in Garel City after the Empire launched an attack on the planet Garel. At least one ship was shot down but most of the fleet escaped into hyperspace.
After learning of the rebel fleet's losses, Senator Bail Organa sent three Hammerhead corvettes to reinforce the fleet. The Spectres and Ryder Azadi managed to steal the ships from the Lothal Depot with the help of Princess Leia Organa. During a diplomatic mission to the Concord Dawn system, elements of the Phoenix Squadron were attacked by Fenn Rau's Fang fighters. In response, the rebels attacked the Protectors' encampment on the third moon of Concord Dawn and kidnapped Rau. As a result, Rau granted the rebel fleet safe passage through the Concord Dawn system.
Later, the loss of A-wings led the rebels to steal an Imperial Quasar Fire-class cruiser-carrier above Ryloth with the help of the Free Ryloth movement. The stolen Imperial ship became their new fighter carrier and flagship Phoenix Home. The Empire later tried to lure the rebel fleet into a trap in the Yost system by attacking the rebel fleet in deep space. However, the rebel astromech droid Chopper and the defecting Imperial inventory droid AP-5 gave the rebel fleet the coordinates to a safe planet called Atollon. Atollon became the site for a new rebel base called Chopper Base.
In 2 BBY, the Imperial tactician Grand Admiral Thrawn turned his attention to defeating the rebel fleet, which he viewed as a threat to the Empire's armada and the Emperor's plans. Under his orders, Governor Arihnda Pryce, Admiral Kassius Konstantine, and Agent Kallus intercepted Phoenix Squadron above the planet Yarma. However, Thrawn realised that this was not the complete rebel fleet and instructed his subordinates to allow the rebels to escape with five stolen Y-wing bombers. These Y-wings were later transferred to General Jan Dodonna's unit.
Later, the rebel fleet's Phoenix Squadron evacuated rebel sympathisers from the planet Mykapo prior to an Imperial crackdown. Commander Jun Sato also managed to rescue his nephew Mart Mattin and his Iron Squadron with the help of the Spectres. Thrawn allowed the Phoenix Squadron to escape into space since he was after the entire rebel fleet.
- Gozanti-class cruiser
- Quasar Fire-class cruiser-carrier
- CR70 corvette (in secret)
- CR90 corvettes
- Hammerhead corvettes
- Class four container transport (appropriated)
- VCX-100 light freighter
- Lancer-class pursuit craft
- YT-2400 light freighter
- Nu-class transport
- Sentinel-class shuttle (appropriated)
- Sheathipede-class transport shuttle
- Taylander shuttles
- A/SF-01 B-wing starfighter
- BTL-A4 Y-wing assault starfighter/bomber
- Fang fighter (secretly)
- Kom'rk-class fighter
- RZ-1 A-wing interceptor
- TIE/ln space superiority starfighter (appropriated)
- TIE/sa bomber (appropriated)
- TIE Advanced v1 (appropriated)
- VCX-series auxiliary starfighter