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Old July 26 2012, 04:25 AM   #657
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Re: TP: Zero Sum Game by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Rush Limborg wrote: View Post
Now, rfmcdpei theorizes the explanation that Tzenketh is more paranoid and xeniphobic than Romulus.
This isn't my theorizing. What's been written about the Tzenkethi to date establishes the Tzenkethi as a civilization dominated by a species that, after having been taken as slaves by any number of more advanced neighbours, went to edit itself to a state where xenophilia was a rare but editable genetic flaw.

[A]s I said before, I am astonished at the idea that the Pact members would consent to a treaty that would allow one member to effectively close its borders so thoroughly to the other member races.
The Tzenkethi are active traders. What they did was alter the biology of the Tzenkethi species such that seeing non-Tzenkethi as anything but useful pawns in the cause of defending Tzenkethi civilization from foreigners is something that Tzenkethi individuals are literally incapable of doing.

Conceivably, non-Tzenkethi intelligence services might be able to establish links with Tzenkethi making use of these intelligence services to wage proxy battles against Tzenkethi opponents. Conceivably, if these proxy battles wouldn't threaten Tzenkethi civilization. More than that would require the Tzenkethi to be a very different species.

Finally...are we somehow to believe that Romulan security--especially including the Tal Shiar--is somehow so loose and so lax as to allow foreigners to carry out such assasinations--especially of the Praetor?!
As of Raise the Dawn, the three past leaders of the Tal Shiar have been killed, victims of assassination or state execution, with internal tumult in the leadership being key.

Also, the method of Alizome's killing--infecting Dor and Tal'Aura with natural disease agents--is pretty subtle. The Tal Shiar might have reason to suspect something unnatural if it was pointed to it, but for that to happen you'd need some reason to suspect that. The most that there is surrounding the deaths of the two Romulans is a suspicion that one communicated the disease to the other in a sexual encounter.

How could the Tal Shiar, of all organizations, even allow such people to have such an opportunity--and somehow leave no tracks for the Tal Shiar to pick up?

*(Then again--perhaps I might be justified in invoking moles, after all. So somehow foreigners were able to sufficiently be in a position to assasinate the Praetor and--probably--Donatra...and "try" to assasinate Spock...without inside help?
Why is Donatra probable victim of an assassination? As her state of mind was described immediately before the discovery of her body, a suicide that was consequence of despair at the utter failure of her various political projects and indeed her entire life was at least as probable a cause of her death as assassination.

(None of this, incidentally, speaks to the ability of Section 31 to be able to infiltrate Romulan society very well. The evidence to date suggests that, to the contrary, the Tal Shiar is able to manipulate Section 31 well, limiting the organization to what it wants to give the organization. Starfleet Intelligence would probably be able to do a better job, being a legitimate organization with clear goals and the like, but that much better?)
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