Who’s Who in the Star Wars Universe? – Barriss Offee

I’ve learned that ‘trust’ is overrated. The only thing the Jedi Council believes in is violence!
―Barriss Offee, expressing her views

Barriss Offee was a female Mirialan who trained as a Jedi Padawan under Jedi Master Luminara Unduli during the Clone Wars. At some point, she studied lightsaber techniques with Tutso Mara, and the two grew to become close. Barriss wasn’t a typical padawan, she would prefer to study ancient Jedi texts rather than being in the action. Barriss become close friends with Anakin Skywalker’s padawan Ahsoka Tano, and the pair began to share a lot of experience on the battlefield.

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As the Clone Wars continued, Barriss began to lose faith in the Jedi order and began to believe that they had lost their way in how they represent themselves, and she began to find the Jedi council extremely untrustworthy. As a way of acting on her suspicions, she orchestrated a bombing of the Jedi Temple, which killed several clone troopers. The plot thickened as she let her closest friend Ahsoka to be framed for the bombing which led to Ahsoka almost being removed from the Jedi order until Barriss was confronted by Anakin and she shared her views of the Jedi being corrupted by the Darkside.

 

The Secessionist Movement

Offee, along with Unduli, sat in on a meeting between the Jedi Council and Supreme Chancellor Sheev Palpatine, who discussed the growing influence of the Secessionist Movement, and the threat of an imminent war between them and the Galactic Republic.

Later, Offee, along with her master, was part of the Jedi assault team sent to rescue Senator Padmé Amidala, Jedi Knight Obi-Wan Kenobi, and his Padawan Anakin Skywalker from the execution arena on Geonosis. The Mirialan survived the battle, as did her master, though the Clone Wars had only just begun.

The Clone Wars

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Second Battle of Geonosis

Early on during the Clone Wars, Offee accompanied her master Luminara back to Geonosis in order to assist Anakin Skywalker and Ahsoka Tano with the infiltration of a Geonosian droid and weapons factory. Leaving their masters to launch a frontal attack, both Padawans sneaked through the Geonosian catacombs below in order to plant explosive grenades from within. They were, however, discovered by Poggle the Lesser and his Super tank. After Tano was rendered unconscious, Barriss was left with a choice: the bombs, or Tano’s life. Ultimately, Offee and Tano decided to use the tank to destroy the reactor, knowing the explosion would kill them in the process. However, due to the tough exterior armour of the tank, both Padawans survived.

Skirmish on board the TB-73

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Kill me… please.
―Offee briefly regains control of herself and pleads Tano to kill her

After recovering from their injuries, the pair were then sent to Dantooine to meet Mace Windu. On their journey, they were ambushed by a swarm of Geonosian brain worms which eventually infected Clone trooper Scythe as well as Barriss herself.

The parasite began to take control of Barriss and she began to stalk Ahsoka when the pair got split up, she eventually found Ahsoka and began to attack her and very nearly killing the padawan, it wasn’t until Ahsoka ruptured the coolant system that Barriss was freed from the parasite. Both padawans were rescued and then taken to the medical bay by Kit Fisto and put into recovery.

Capture of Eeth Koth

Offee was present in the Jedi Temple on Coruscant when General Grievous sent a message to the Order, informing them of the capture of fellow Jedi Eeth Koth. Offee witnessed his brutal torture and left the room along with the younglings after they were dismissed by Master Yoda.

Battle over Umbara

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During the Battle of Umbara, Offee and Tano led Republic forces against the Separatist blockade over the planet of Umbara, allowing infiltration from both Jedi and clone forces.

Bombing of the Jedi Temple

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I did it. Because I’ve come to realize what many people in the Republic have come to realize, that the Jedi are the ones responsible for this War. That we’ve so lost our way that we have become villains in this conflict, that we are the ones that should be put on trial, all of us! And my attack on the Temple was an attack on what the Jedi have become: an army fighting for the dark side, fallen from the Light that we once held so dear. This Republic is failing! It’s only a matter of time.
―Barriss Offee admitting to, and explaining, her actions to the court

The later years of the Clone Wars are when things changed for Barriss. Her views on the Jedi and the galaxy became distorted as she believed they had both lost their way. Barriss met Letta Turmond, a native from Coruscant who also had similar beliefs with regards to the Jedi. The pair decided it was time for a change and decided to attempt to blow up the Jedi Temple using Nano-Droids,  Killing several Jedi, clones and civilians.

Turmond was force choked in her cell by Barriss as a way of covering her involvement in the bombing, which then led to her disguising herself as assassin Asajj Ventress and attacking her former friend Ahsoka. After Tano was discovered by Republic clones, she was blamed for the bombing and put back under containment.

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The Jedi council decided it was necessary to remove Ahsoka from the Jedi Order. Anakin who was disappointed in the decision began to investigate the matter by confronting Asajj Ventress, where she revealed that her lightsabers had been stolen prior to the attack on the temple. Anakin then went on to interrogate Barriss and drew his lightsaber out in preparation for battle, as a response Barriss drew both of Ventresses lightsabers which then revealed that Barriss was behind it all.

Skywalker burst in during Tano’s trial with Offee, who was being led by several temple guards, one of whom would eventually become the future Grand Inquisitor. Skywalker demanded that she tell the full truth; Offee admitted she did it because she had come to believe the Jedi were the ones responsible for the war and that they were the villains of the conflict. Offee was then taken away while Tano was cleared of all charges.

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The Jedi Council offered to give Ahsoka her place back in the Jedi Order, but as she felt betrayed by both the order for thinking she was capable of doing such a thing and also by her close friend Barriss for betraying her and even attempting to take her life, Ahsoka decided to decline the offer and follow her own path.

Legacy

Barriss Offee was wrong about a lot of things. She let her anger cloud her judgement and she tried to justify her actions without considering their wider effects. She was afraid of the war and she didn’t trust people she should’ve listened to. But she had a point about the Republic and the Jedi. There was something wrong with them, and we were too locked into our traditions to see what it was. Barriss should’ve done something else. She shouldn’t have killed anyone, and she definitely shouldn’t have framed me for it, but if we’d listened to her-really listened-we might have been able to stop Palpatine before he took power.
―Ahsoka Tano expressing her feelings over Barriss Offee’s actions

Following Barriss’ attempts to destroy the Jedi Order, Ki-Adi-Mundi supported the idea of executing the fallen Jedi Quinlan Vos, citing Offee’s treachery as a sign that the Jedi had a problem with traitors within their own ranks.

Eventually, the Jedi Order fell to the final stage of Darth Sidious’ plans for the galaxy, and the Republic was transformed into the tyrannical Galactic Empire. One year into the reign of the Empire, Tano was still haunted by Offee’s actions and later expressed her belief that while she was wrong about most things, she did have a point about the Jedi and the Republic, and that if they had truly listened to her, they might have been able to stop Darth Sidious before it was too late.

May the Force be with you all!

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