Blue Red (dark side)
|Chronological and political information|
Kaan was Dark Lord of the Sith in the last years of the New Sith Wars and ascended to leadership of the New Sith Empire almost a decade before the Ruusan campaign, ending a long and protracted civil war among various self proclaimed Sith warlords. After uniting the surviving remnants under his banner, Kaan led them into a final war against the Jedi on the world of Ruusan, before destroying himself and his followers with the thought bomb.
Kaan was once a Jedi Master who fell to the dark side of the Force, joining the New Sith Empire. He became a Sith Lord, and eventually the Dark Lord of the Sith. He was known to his supporters as the "Dark One."
At the time of Kaan's ascent, the New Sith Empire had fractured, with dozens of Sith Lords claiming the title of Dark Lord and waging endless campaigns against each other, rather than uniting to bring down the ailing Republic. Sensing that their endless quest for supremacy and power would destroy the Sith, Kaan set about reuniting the various splinter states under his banner.
His idea of cooperation and equality among the Sith Lords was unique in their history. Rather than challenge each of the self-proclaimed "Dark Lords" and threaten the war effort, Kaan acquiesced to their vanity, and named them all "Dark Lord of the Sith", and declared "All are equal in the Brotherhood of Darkness." But he forbade any Sith to take the historic title of Darth, since he held that title as being solely responsible for the jealousy and infighting that had destroyed the Sith in the past.
Kaan became the founder of the Sith army known as the Brotherhood of Darkness, and managed to turn it from a scrabble of feuding warlords into a powerful force to take control of the galaxy. The two most powerful Sith warlords—Kopecz and Qordis—pledged themselves to his cause, and they were followed by others, such as Kas'im, LaTor and Kaox Krul.
With his charisma and power, the Sith struck back at the Galactic Republic and the Jedi Order. Thousands of Sith and Jedi battled one another across the galaxy. Among the most notable opponents of the Sith was the aged Jedi Master Lord Hoth, who became a General with the Republic forces. Although the conflict was widely regarded as an all-out war, the Republic claimed that it was simply fighting a series of engagements against an illegal organization.
The reinvigorated Sith pushed the Jedi back, winning great victories. Kaan proved to be a brilliant strategist, and an excellent tactician, capable of winning victory after victory against the Jedi forces. All the while, putting his charisma to good use, luring many Jedi to serve him.
While Kaan was a charismatic and skilled general, his rule was more fragile than it seemed, a weakness that would be exploited as the war ground on. As long as the victories continued, however, the Sith would remain united behind him.
Kaan tried to provoke Hoth into a confrontation, laying waste to worlds such as Bespin, Sullust and Taanab, but his main strategy seemed to have already been to push towards the Core Worlds, with Sith armies seizing Kashyyyk as a staging-ground in the Mid Rim, and winning battles on Trandosha and Phaseera.
Kaan's next target was Ruusan, a world near Kashyyyk, mostly insignificant except for its crucial role as a staging ground for attacks on Sith-held Kashyyyk. Striking without warning, the Sith fleet staged a devastating assault on the unprepared planet, completely overwhelming the planet's meager defenses. From his flagship Nightfall, Kaan directed the campaign, utilizing his skill in Battle meditation to confound the Republic defenders and bolster his own forces. The First Battle of Ruusan was an absolute victory for the Sith.
Republic forces were repulsed again from Ruusan in the Second Battle of Ruusan, and Kaan launched an ambitious invasion of the Core with his fleet, thrusting into the Bormea sector to conquer Chandrilla, Corulag and Brentaal IV. The Sith seemed almost poised to conquer Coruscant, and the Jedi seemed not to be attempting to defend the Core.
However, Lord Hoth had gathered a Jedi army, known as the Army of Light, and had arrived on Ruusan to defeat the remaining Sith forces in the Third Battle of Ruusan, and wipe out the Brotherhood, once and for all.
By the Fourth Battle of Ruusan, the war had moved to the surface of the planet itself, and, though outnumbered and outmanned by the Army of Light, Kaan sensed victory—the Jedi had spread themselves far too thin in a vain attempt to protect the inhabitants of Ruusan. In addition, the defection of the Jedi Githany gave the Sith vital intelligence on the Jedi battle plan. Though the Sith were suffering high casualties, Kaan believed he would prevail, and sent for reinforcements.
While most of his followers remained loyal, a few prominent Dark Lords within the Brotherhood began to question his leadership: Githany, Kopecz and most notably, Darth Bane. With the attentions of the Sith Lords focused against the Jedi on Ruusan, the tide of the war seemed to be turning against the Sith, with the Republic reclaiming areas like the Stenness Node.
Bane was opposed to Kaan's battle tactics against the Jedi, believing that Lord Kaan was acting more like an ordinary military commander than a Dark Lord of the Sith, and was not properly using the dark side of the Force. Lord Kaan tried to kill Bane—first, by sending Kas'im to murder him, then, when that failed, by having Githany poison him. Bane was too strong—and survived both assassination attempts.
Darth Bane returned, and declared Kaan unworthy of his title, but not before sending to Kaan a peace offering—a scroll inscribed with an ancient Sith ritual—the thought bomb.
While surprised at Bane's survival, Lord Kaan accepted Darth Bane's tactical advice. Using the Force and attacking as one, the members of the Brotherhood meditated and focused their dark energy into Bane. The combined power of the Sith devastated the Army of Light, and victory was in the Sith grasp.
Even as the Jedi defeat was imminent, Lord Kaan and the other members of the brotherhood broke the meditation circle. Impatient and overconfident, Kaan believed that the Jedi could be quickly and easily defeated if the Sith took to the field. Secretly, Kaan and his followers were jealous of Bane and his power, and felt that Darth Bane was using their energy for his own benefit.
When the Sith masters broke their mediation and took the field, however, the Jedi counterattacked, and the Sith took severe losses. Most of the Sith Masters died in the battle. Kaan took his defeated forces into a deep caves to wait for the Jedi's final strike. There he used his ultimate tactic: a "thought bomb".
Kaan believed that the thought bomb would destroy the Jedi, but that he and the rest of the Sith would be strong enough to survive. That belief would lead to not just his own doom, but that of every Force-user within the radius of the explosion. With the aid of LaTor, Kaan studied and refined the thought bomb ritual until he and the other Dark Lords were ready to unleash it. With Qordis dead, and Githany and Darth Bane having left the Brotherhood, it was left to Kopecz to defend against the approaching Jedi forces under Valenthyne Farfalla.
When Lord Hoth and his retinue finally arrived and confronted the Sith, Lord Kaan detonated the thought bomb, killing himself, his Sith followers and Lord Hoth's Jedi. The New Sith Wars were over and the Sith presumed extinct.
The caves where Kaan and his Brotherhood had died would eventually be known as the Valley of the Jedi. Darth Bane, his apprentice Darth Zannah, and her cousin Darovit were those that survived the bomb, being distant from its effects and suffering little damage. Bane's callous assessment of his rival and former leader was that Kaan's "suicide" was his "smartest decision".
Oddly, although the Force ghosts of all the Jedi and the Sith were thought to have been trapped in the Valley of the Jedi, Kaan's consciousness seems to have somehow escaped his own trap and communicate with Bane. Along with Qordis, who had died before the detonation of the thought bomb, he appeared to him after the battle. Former acrimony apparently forgotten, Kaan guided Bane on Dxun to a Sith holocron that would help him restore the Sith Order—and also tricked him into symbiosis with the orbalisks that would become his living armor.
For most of the Sith that followed the Rule of Two, he was considered symbolic of the flawed Sith of old—his narcissistic, paranoid and backstabbing cowardice representing the Brotherhood of Darkness as a whole.
Not all of Bane's order dismissed Kaan, however—the apostate Darth Millennial considered Kaan's philosophy of "Rule by the Strong" as superior to Bane's "Rule of Two" and Millennial left his own master over such a disagreement.
Unlike many Sith Lords, Kaan was handsome, charming and charismatic, features enhanced by his prodigious talent and skill in mind manipulation. In addition, he was a master of Battle meditation, a keen military strategist, and a powerful warrior.
Despite this, Kaan's exterior concealed an empty core. He preached "Rule by the Strong" to hide his own weakness of spirit. It was this weakness that allowed his defeats in the last days of his life to drive him insane, which eventually led to his death.
The name Kaan may have been chosen due to its similarity to "Khan", which is a title for a commander, leader, or ruler. Kaan's achievements have parallels to Genghis Khan's - they united various warring factions of their people (Sith and the Mongols, respectively).
Kaan is a male name in Turkish, meaning “khan”.