Ishta is the proud and determined leader of the Hak'tyl, the female Jaffa warriors of Moloc's domain. She had once been married to a warrior of high station in Moloc's imperial guard who had taken many wives but had been killed in battle against a rival Goa'uld. As the temple high priestess she had been afforded many luxuries and freedoms not available to most.
Moloc had decreed that only male children be allowed to live, and part of Ishta's duty in the temple was to record births and to preside over the ceremony of fire to destroy all female infants. Instead, however, she and other priestesses and female warriors secretly spirited the infants to safety on a world unknown to Moloc.
Ishta proposed an alliance with the Tauri, offering intelligence and warriors in the battle against the Goa'uld in exchange for weapons, food, and supplies. SG-1 in turn offered tretonin as a means of eliminating the Hak'tyl's dependence on symbiotes. Ishta did not welcome the tretonin at first, but she came to accept the drug for her people as a means to freedom from the Goa'uld. Ishta has remained a close ally of the SGC, and a close friend of Teal'c, with whom a romantic relationship has begun.
Ishta also allied herself with the Rebel Jaffa, although her primary goal had been the elimination of Moloc before the unilateral destruction of the System Lords. When the Hak'tyl homeworld was compromised, Ishta brought the Hak'tyl refugees to the SGC until a new homeworld could be found, and she supported the marriage of Rya'c to her young Hak'tyl warrior, Kar'yn, despite Teal'c's objections. She arranged for a summit with members of the Rebel Jaffa, but the meeting was ambushed and Ishta was taken prisoner and tortured by Moloc. A rescue attempt, supported by SGC missiles, freed Ishta and killed Moloc, and Ishta returned to lead her people to a new homeworld from which her battle against the Goa'uld continued.
Portrayed by: Jolene Blalock
Cross Reference: Aron, Hak'tyl, Jaffa, Ka'lel, Kar'yn, Mala, Moloc, Neith, Nesa, Nictal, Rebel Jaffa, Teal'c, Tretonin
Episode Reference: Birthright, Sacrifices