For the Republic: Tools of Statecraft
by Her Excellency Cecily Eleanora Marie de Demici
Senator of Onderon l Minister for State of the Galactic Republic
"Diplomacy is the art of saying 'nice doggie' until you can find a rock"
Since the dawn of the Republic the art of statecraft has been a subtle change of hands between the application of diplomacy and military force, both effective tools by which we have furthered the cause of democracy in the galaxy. Idealists would say that the use of military force is subordinate, and in this way inferior, to diplomacy, but the reality is not always so simple. In fact, more often than not, there is a fundamental misunderstanding of these tools and their uses in government.
2.1 The Art of Statecraft
As I mentioned earlier, there is often a misunderstanding, at the most fundamental levels, of what diplomacy and military force actually are in terms of inter-governmental relations. Diplomacy is merely the verbal or written representation of the interests of a state while military action is the physical attempt to make state interests a reality. Both of these are merely tools of Statecraft, which is the effort by a nation to manage realities and advance the interests of the state itself.
The interests of the Republic are to advance the ideals of freedom, liberty, and justice throughout the galaxy, while at the same time protecting our people at home. For us, Statecraft is the effort by our military and our Ministry of State, to convey the benefits of these ideals and to keep at bay any who might wish harm on our citizenry or who may wish to hinder our advances.
This is the reality that governs all states. The Mandalorians, though they would feign ignorance, have a policy that defends their right to relative autonomy and that protects the distinct culture of their clans; the Sith, though one could be forgiven for missing it, have a policy that promotes their idea of order in the galaxy; and the Hutt Cartel have a policy that promotes individual freedoms through the purest exploitation of a free market. Each state has a different approach to these policies, but all of them have an approach and that is the key to understanding Statecraft.
2.2 Diplomacy and the Republic
As the Minister for State of the Galactic Republic, I am charged with the responsibility of shaping a policy of diplomatic relations that coordinates the efforts of all our resources to communicate our message that freedom, liberty, and justice are the dominant forces that govern a truly prosperous society. It has always been the belief of the Republic that peaceful negotiations are favorable to military intervention, but we do not deny the usefulness of the latter.
We are daily faced with critics of our government who claim that we have taken a uniquely hawkish approach to our engagements with the One Sith. Small organizations have organized protests of Senate session and military demonstrations, demanding an end to the war. Quite simply put, all attempts to negotiate with the Sith have been rebuffed by our enemies. Our intelligence officials believe that even the attempt to meet with the Sith Emperor would end in the slaughter or imprisonment of our delegation.
However, that is not to say that the Republic does not effectively use diplomacy in our dealings with the Sith. The truth is quite the opposite. Diplomacy is not always the peaceful alternative to violent confrontations, just as often this tool of statecraft serves to prepare states for war as often as it strives to avoid it. For the Republic, diplomacy has been very successfully utilized in our efforts against the One Sith. Diplomacy is a key component of waging a successful war, something the Sith seem to greatly underestimate. Through peaceful negotiation, we have all, but united the galaxy in the cause to defeat the Sith and it is our hope that these efforts will begin to turn the tide against their unwelcome advances on sovereign territory.
2.3 Military Force
For the purpose of simplicity, the utilization of large scale military engagements are known as war. In this way, the Republic has effectively been at war with the Sith for millennia and where this war originate does not matter. The narrow view of war by idealists is that it is senseless violence. In truth, war is a collection of military action intended to achieve a preferred state of peace. Only when the military actions of a state are crafted in such a way for the end goal to be a state of prolonged peace can such actions truly be differentiated from senseless violence.
So, in this way, the efforts of the Sith could easily be characterized as bloodshed for its own sake. Meanwhile, the Republic, despite most of our military actions being retaliatory in nature, has waged true war with the intent of resolving the conflict between the two states.
2.4 Eliminating War
It is important to mention that my observations of diplomacy and military action are purely scholarly in nature and do not reflect the intent of our Republic. In truth, it would be favorable for us to eliminate the need for war altogether. Unfortunately, we alone cannot decide this for ourselves as we coexist with many different cultures and governments all wishing to convey their own interests.
Even if galactic peace were to be achieved and everyone was content to reside quietly in their own corner of our galaxy, the threat of extra-galactic intrusion remains as we saw with the untimely arrival of the Yuuzhan Vong. The very nature of their interests was contrary to the beliefs held by those in our galaxy and the differences were irreconcilable. If not through war, peace would never have been reached.
Perhaps that is how our conflict with the Sith must be resolved. A culture that enshrines violence and hatred can only truly comprehend physical dominance, and so our military efforts must endure.