How do you feel about your Neimoidians trying to illegally blockade a planet knowing many innocents would die? How can you support such activity?
Ooh, well-played Mike, well-played!
I'd like to point out a few things first before I answer it. The Blockade of Naboo had its origins in the Naboo Trade Embargo in 33BBY, as a response to taxing the outlaying trade routes. This was done primarily to fund the Republic, at the indirect cost of the Trade Federation; to me, at least, it appears this whole ordeal which even led into the Clone Wars was in the name of the very thing the Republic thought it was fighting: corporate corruption. Neither the embargo nor the blockade were illegal, at least not to begin with, and right up until the invasion actually began, communications were still kept open.
Secondly, it was not the "Neimoidians" per se, who blockaded and invaded Naboo, but the Trade Federation. Granted, of course, how huge the Trade Federation is in Neimoidian culture, and is, in many ways, an extension of the Neimoidians as a whole; however, saying that the Neimoidians invaded Naboo is like saying "the Americans invaded Canada," when, in fact, it may have just been Wal-Mart. An insignificantly small percentage of the Neimoidian population was involved with this, and, in fact, following the fall of the Trade Federation and the rise of the Galactic Empire, a great many Neimoidians sought to distance themselves not only from the Trade Federation but even from their own culture and species, due to the stigma attached to it.
Now, I'm going to make it clear to everyone who doesn't know this already, that I support both the Neimoidians and the Trade Federation; despite its history, the Trade Federation is great corporate and cultural body, which plays an enormous role in Neimoidian life. It's incredibly successful and well-organised as a corporation (perhaps not so much on the battlefield...but we're merchants, not soldiers! It'd be like complaining that your average accountant is a terrible wrestler; it's just not his area of expertise). As far as the destruction of innocents goes, I can't say I agree with any of it. I think Viceroy Gunray got in over his head, and found himself biting off more than he could chew. While there were monetary interests at the b ack of it all, the invasion was not "directly" motivated as such. I think if it had been, there probably wouldn't have been an invasion to begin with. As I said, we're merchants, not warriors. I could be incredibly cruel here and say "if it helps Neimoidians, then screw everyone else," and I'll admit, a part of me really wants to say that...but I won't, because I don't think the killing of innocents is ever right. And I definitely believe that if it weren't for a certain Sith Lord (and a certain red-spotted pylat), the Trade Federation might have lasted for millennia in reasonable standing.
How can I still love a people and an entity, despite such a shameful time in history? Simple! I'm British, and I won't hesitate to admit that my country has done terrible, awful things in the past. Things that make the Trade Federation look like Mother Teresa. It's killed more innocents than anything the Trade Federation could accomplish, invaded more countries, destroyed more land and cultures; and there are days when I feel I have to apologise endlessly for that. BUT my country has also done great things then and now. And, regardless of its past, I still love and support my country today. How is that any different?
On that note, however, I'd like to ask in return, not just to Mike but to anyone: during the Battle of Neimoidia, clone troopers invaded and burned numerous Neimoidian grub hatcheries. For anyone who doesn't know, grub hatcheries are where Neimoidians leave their offspring. Basically, they killed Neimoidian babies. Now I'm certain a great many of my readers are probably thinking "Who cares? They're Neimoidians!" (and I'm hoping to change that point of view, little by little), but think about it...they're innocents too. When is a baby not an innocent? Burning those grub hatcheries is akin to going and torching an elementary school or an orphanage. How can YOU support such brutality? How do you feel about that? How also do you feel about the Republic growing an army of living, breathing, sentient humans in test tubes whose only future is the battlefield?