Oh, yes, Noghri—I know what you and your people are. The Emperor's private Death Commandos; killing and dying at the whim of ambitious men like Darth Vader and the Grand Admiral here.
~ Joruus C'Baoth on the Noghri

Noghri were recurring antagonists in Timothy Zahn's Thrawn Trilogy. They were a race of humanoid commandos whom Darth Vader used as assassins. Later, as reward for his intelligence, Vader placed them under the service of Grand Admiral Thrawn. One of them, Rukh, served as his bodyguard up until his death.

During The Thrawn Trilogy, the Noghri were tasked by Thrawn to capture Vader's daughter Leia Organa Solo, for the Chiss planned to deliver her to the Dark Jedi Joruus C'Baoth as a reward for his service. C'Baoth desired to turn her unborn twins, Jacen and Jaina, into his Dark Jedi apprentices. However, upon learning that Organa Solo was the daughter of their late master, the Noghri hesitated.

Darth Vader and Empreror Palpatine, the Noghri's "saviors"

Believing she could save their people, Leia traveled to Honoghr and learned the truth: During the Clone Wars, Honoghr was ravaged during a battle between the Grand Army of the Republic (led by Aayla Secura) and the Confederacy of Independent Systems. After witnessing the prowess of the primitive Noghri against Vader's Stormtroopers, he and Emperor Palpatine decided to use this tragedy to their advantage. Vader convinced the Noghri that their planet was ruined by the Alliance to Restore the Republic. The Sith pulled off a ruse which convinced the Noghri that Vader was their savior and they pledged their eternal loyalty to the Galactic Empire.

Some years later Vader informed the Noghri that he had to devote his full attention to his duties in fighting the Rebel Alliance, and introduced Thrawn as their new overlord. Many Noghri were sad to see Vader go as they had come to absolutely revere Vader.

Grand Admiral Thrawn, the Noghri's former commander

After Princess Leia found evidence that the Empire was deliberately poisoning Honoghr to keep the Noghri enslaved to them, she revealed the ruse to the Noghri leadership. The Noghri decided to leave the Empire's service, although they did so quietly as to not endanger Noghri out in the galaxy serving the Empire. When Thrawn learned that the Noghri served him no longer Thrawn's Noghri bodyguard Rukh assassinated him, causing chaos in Thrawn's fleet and forcing the Empire back into retreat.

In the years following Thrawn's defeat a large portion of the Noghri were relocated to a number of other planets in order to give Honoghr time to heal. One of their settlements was on the planet Wayland, where the Noghri dedicated themselves to wiping out every last trace of the Emperor's presence on that world. This caused a dispute since the Noghri wanted to destroy everything, but some of the worlds the Emperor's treasures were stolen from wanted their property returned - which often had cultural significance to these worlds.

Additionally the Noghri became members of the New Republic, with Kahr'corvh Clan Kihm'bar representing them in the New Republic's Senate. Ten years after the Battle of Yavin Kahr'corvh was one of the signatories of the document Why Do We Fight the Empire - a document released to the Holonet explaining why the New Republic continued to fight the Imperial Remnant.

Many Noghri served as Leia's personal bodyguards for many years, in a similar fashion to the way Chewbacca protected her husband Han Solo. Even though Leia faced opposition from some members of the New Republic who were resentful of the Noghri's past Imperial service, the Noghri continuously defended Leia from the Empire, the Yuuzhan Vong, and even from her own son. After Cakhmaim and Meewalh were destroyed by Darth Caedus, 31 years after Thrawn's death, the Noghri's service to Leia seemed to come to an end.

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See Also
Star Wars Legends Villains | Star Wars The Old Republic Villains

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