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It is the only moon of Yavin that is suitable to live on and served as the Rebel Alliance's secret base during the events of A New Hope.
It was here the momentous Battle of Yavin IV took place, a small Rebel strike forces were able to destroy the Galactic Empire's dreaded Death Star. It's destruction was made possible by Luke Skywalker who's piloting skills and use of the force, was able to strike at the Death Star's weak point destroying it. This marked as one of the greatest victories of the Rebel Alliance. However the Empire responded swiftly and sent a massive strike force to Yavin IV, lead by Darth Vader himself the Empire destroyed the rebel base, forcing the Alliance to flee.
Long before the Galactic Civil War Yavin IV was controlled by the ancient Sith Lord Naga Sadow. Naga Sadow retreated into Yavin IV after his defeat in the Great Hyperspace War by the Galactic Republic. There he preformed Sith expriments on his Massasi warriors turning them into primitive red skinned mutants, and used them as his slaves. The Massasi worshiped Naga Sadow as a god building various temples in his honor, Naga Sadow later entombed himself in a sarcophagus and placed in a coma like state, while his Massasi warriors guarded his tomb, the Sith lord waited for some one to come and take up the legacy of the Sith.
A fallen Jedi named Freedon Nadd came Yavin IV to seek out the secrets of the Sith. After defeating the Massasi who attacked him he found the tomb of Naga Sadow and awaken the spirit of the Sith lord. Freedon Nadd was able to master Sith magic from Sadows teachings, but after learning everything he could from him he destroyed the Sith lords spirit and proclaimed himself as the new Dark Lord of the Sith.