Taking a moment to drop you a line. As you know, life here in the Rebel Alliance has been kind of crazy of late, what with the whole Death Star business and everything. You hear about Alderaan? I’m not even sure if I believe the news, sounds like Imperial propaganda trying to throw us off. Has definitely caused a lot of action here on base. There’s ships coming and going like you wouldn’t believe.
As you know, I took that promotion to sergeant in the Alliance’s military police corps. It’s definitely a different world from the maintenance bays. There, we hardly had to do anything; the droids handled all the work orders and we could just hide out in the hangers playing games or sleeping. But now, we’ve got real jobs to do. We’ve been told that our orders come direct from Mon Mothma herself, which is pretty crazy.
I guess you’re probably wondering what it is we do. It’s not too much to say that we’re the real lynchpin holding this base together. Security is the most important thing, of course. We’ve got patrols and gate guards that handle things on the ground to keep our perimeter safe. Really, those X-Wing pilots couldn’t do their jobs without us, because if we weren’t there the whole base would be overrun with who-knows-what: animals and locals and Stormtroopers, probably. But we keep this place locked down. I served as shift NCOIC for our quick reaction force for a few weeks and that was pretty cool. We only got called out once because there was a malfunctioning droid that was trying to wander off post, but still: an important job.
Now I’m part of the Speed Control and Abatement Team (SCAT) which is a pretty big deal. See, safety is paramount in everything we do. In fact, according to the last briefing we had at the company level, safety is our number one priority. As Lieutenant Porkins says – he’s Red Squadron’s safety officer, by the way – “we can’t fly if we’re all dead from accidents.” And you’ve got to admit, he’s got a point. In the last safety office review, it was found that approach speeds for vessels coming to the landing pad were responsible for 73% of all ship-to-ship accidents. So now it is our responsibility to ensure that those accidents are kept to a minimum. To do that, we use scanners to analyze the ship’s approach vector and speed and if it exceeds the posted standards we ticket that ship’s captain. I tell you what, in the past three weeks I’ve written 15 tickets and there’s been a huge drop in violations. I even got Admiral Ackbar coming in too hot one time. He accused me of a speed trap but the scanner doesn’t lie. The worst chewing out I ever got was from Lieutenant Wedge Antilles, though. I almost thought he was going to draw his blaster on me, but he paid his fine in the end.
Now, don’t get me wrong, it can get pretty boring up in those towers. I pass my 4 hour shift by counting birds – although the fighter ships have really done a number on those birds with their engines. There’s dead birds everywhere. We actually have to send out details to collect them off the landing pads, otherwise they can get sucked into engines and it makes more mess than a Bantha with the runs.
Other stuff I do when not on tower duty is to do patrols to ensure everyone is wearing the correct safety gear – we’ve got this panel you wear at night that lights up so that you don’t get run over, and it’s mandatory for wear but for some reason people don’t like it. Princess Leia Organa tried to get away without wearing it but we reported her to Mon Mothma. Unfortunately, I don’t think Mon Mothma took us seriously. She will when someone gets run over by a speeder, that’s for sure.
I’m not sure the head shed takes what we do seriously. A few days ago some rogue personnel took off without clearance in a captured Imperial shuttle – no paperwork, nothing, just some made-up callsign of Rogue One. Well, I filed all the correct paperwork, hit them with a 2000 credit fine, but it got all hushed up for some reason. Later that day they scrambled like half the fleet. Still don’t know what that was about but things were crazy for a while: no manifests, no clearances, and no accountability. I don’t know what things are coming to. Blue Squadron never even checked back in.
But mom, get this! Earlier today, a Corellian freighter came in WAY over the speed limit and I saw Princess Organa get off it with some scruffy looking folks and a real Wookie! They totally do exist! And I always thought you were making them up to try to scare me into eating my vegetables. Anyways, the base has been on lockdown since they arrived and I can see a lot of movement on the flight pads. Looks like Red and Gold Squadrons are prepping for something. Wish they’d file their manifests properly.
Damn, there goes that Corellian freighter again! Gotta go, mom, lots of paperwork to do to write that guy up. I don’t know who he thinks he is.
Love to all,
Sergeant Issa Prellian
RA MP Corps
“Vigilance is a Force Multiplier”
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About the Author: Angry Staff Officer is an Army engineer officer who is adrift in a sea of doctrine and staff operations and uses writing as a means to retain his sanity. He also collaborates on a podcast with Adin Dobkin entitled War Stories, which examines key moments in the history of warfare.
Cover Photo: Rebel tower guard on Yavin 4 (Lucasfilm Ltd.)