Doctor Charles Jehonathan Kwan was a scientist of the Socialist Union of Democratic States in IOT9. Born in Cape Town, South Africa to Hong Kong actor Joe Kwan and English chemist Susan Bennet, at the age of 15 he moved to France where he studied physics at the University of Lyon, and later obtained a doctorate in military science at Saint-Cyr. Kwan gained international recognition for his pioneering of the Seiyder Ion Tank, the first in a proposed line of ion-based weaponry.
Kwan was rigidly determined to see science advance at any cost, bringing him into conflict with the head of SUDS' space programme Vladimir Orzov over Kwan's long-term objective of developing an orbital ion cannon. In public statements, Kwan frequently challenged the legitimacy of Coruscant's cosmic hegemony and spoke of the 'inevitability' of technological dissemination. Critics accused Kwan's confrontational attitude of running the risk of provoking a space-based arms race.