- "Takin' the safety off!"
- ―Anonymous Rebel trooper
Rebel troopers (also known as Rebel soldiers and Rebel infantry) were standard foot soldiers employed by the Alliance to Restore the Republic. After the Declaration of a New Republic in 5 ABY, most Rebel troopers were organized into regular units of the New Republic Army.
Rebel troopers came from all walks of life and joined up for many reasons. Imperial defectors were not uncommon,  and some clone troopers were known to have joined the Alliance. From the moisture farms of Tatooine to the marbled halls of Coruscant, Rebel troopers hoped to shore up the struggling Alliance in any way they could.
From the beginning of the Alliance in 2 BBY and up until the formation of the New Republic in 4 ABY, the Rebel troopers saw their organization transformed. What started out as countless local cells of loosely structured resistance groups, gradually turned into a galactic wide and well-trained infantry force.
Rebel troopers constitute the main element of the Alliance Army. In the overall structure of the Alliance's military, the troopers fell under the jurisdiction of Sector Forces, under the ultimate command of Chief of State Mon Mothma. Rebel troopers were organized into standard units of varying size, ranging from squads and up to the largest tactical units, the divisions. Divisions were roughly equivalent to Stormtrooper Legions in manpower, but not necessarily in combat power.
Rebel troopers sometimes stood in contrast to the better trained and better equipped Alliance Special Forces. Furthermore regular Rebel troopers were typically a few years younger and less experienced than their colleagues in the SpecForces. Nevertheless SpecForces was often dependant on the support of these troopers from the Sector Forces to complete their own battle objectives. Also the Rebel troopers served as a primary source of SpecForce recruitment. If a Rebel trooper had above average physical and mental abilities and was dedicated enough to the Alliance, he could be considered a SpecForce candidate.
Rebel troopers employed squad-level tactics and guerrilla warfare to to be effective against the Empire. They also deployed vehicles in hit-and-run missions. Squads were carried and deployed into battle aboard GR-75 medium transports.
Uniforms and equipmentEdit
The task of supplying all Rebel troopers with standardized uniforms on a galactic scale was nearly impossible. Nevertheless the Alliance Army was able to implement a 'standard look' that could help identify the troopers as Rebels and therefore also improve morale and unit cohesion. The large helmets with neck guards and khaki uniforms became some of the trademarks of the Rebel / New Republic uniforms.
Rebel troopers of various units spread across the galaxy were often equipped with uniforms bearing a striking resemblance to the uniforms of the Alderaanian armed forces. Alliance sympathizers within the Alderaanian government helped fund, train and equip many militant groups outside the Alderaan system. The unadmitted military support of the Alliance was to such an extent that it helped shape the look of Rebel troopers for years to come. Even after the Destruction of Alderaan in 0 BBY, and perhaps because of it, many Rebel units began showing up in uniforms greatly inspired by the former Alderaanian armed forces.[source?] Much of the uniforms and equipment came from the Galactic Republic's Planetary Security Forces.
The Alderaanian-looking and most common uniform of the Rebel troopers consisted of blue shirts, black combat vests, gray trousers and black calf length boots. To protect officers and general infantry from head injuries, white blast helmets with blast visors and extended neck guards were issued as standard head-wear. They, however, lacked the level of armor utilized by their imperial counterparts. This basic uniform was seen all over the galaxy, often with smaller differences in design and coloring.
Troopers who operated in more harsh environments such as hot deserts, icy plains or thick jungles, would often be equipped with more specialized uniforms and equipment. Usually these troopers wore camouflaged uniforms. The most noticeable use of these camouflaged uniforms was during the Battle of Endor, where rebel soldiers wore green/brown camouflage, to allow them to blend in with Endor's forested environment. On ice or snow planets, such as Hoth, they wore thicker, white variants which afforded troopers greater protection from the elements.
With the establishment of the New Republic, the troopers, now part of the Combined Defense Forces of the New Republic, were more frequently seen wearing government and unit symbols on their sleeves and body armor.
With regards to weaponry, most rebel troopers were issued DH-17 blaster rifles or A280 blaster rifles. These rapid-fire blasters made rebel troopers an effective fighting force in medium range combat. The two standard-issue sidearms were the DL-44 heavy blaster pistol and the DH-17 blaster pistol. These pistols were usually only used when rifle ammunition was low or in close-quarter firefights, where a rifle would prove to be too cumbersome. Each trooper also usually carried up to 4 Class-A thermal detonators, for anti-personal and anti-vehicular purposes. Although, these were not likely to be used during combat aboard starships for fear of a hull breach. On the open battlefield they could also utilize a range of heavier weaponry, including E-Web heavy repeating blasters, mortars, and hand-held missile launchers.
Rebel troopers were outfitted at Alliance Army troop centers on various worlds and were divided into several ranks. Trooper Recruits had only light armor and weaponry, while Heavy Blaster Troopers had better weaponry and tougher armor. Armored Repeater Troopers were issued repeating blasters.
Behind the scenesEditHelmets similar to those worn by Rebel troopers were worn by Old Republic soldiers in 3956 BBY, such as Trask Ulgo and other Republic Navy personnel serving on the Endar Spire.
It is speculated that the early Alliance relied much on old equipment and uniforms from the pre-Imperial age. Before the Old Republic’s use of Clone troopers, it is possible that the white helmets with extended neck guards were a standard helmet design found throughout the galaxy. If so, it would seem that even the Imperial Navy troopers adopted this design. Their helmets were manufactured in black though.
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Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 The Essential Guide to Warfare
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 Star Wars: The Force Unleashed comic places the founding of the Rebellion in 2 BBY.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 The Essential Guide to Warfare places the reorganization of the Rebel Alliance into the New Republic in 4 ABY.
- ↑ Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Star Wars: Battlefront
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 Star Wars Battlefront: Prima Official Game Guide
- ↑ Star Wars: Rebellion (comics)
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 Star Wars: Empire at War
- ↑ The Force Unleashed Campaign Guide
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds