Star Trek now tries to reflect a post-colonial, post-first world man's universe where death is a larger part of the landscape than the bourgeois life we all generally inhabit. It's central Africa Trek, Middle East Trek, central America Trek, Baltimore Trek!
But I think regarding the massive destructions and deaths in Treklit reflect our zeitgeistal desire to have a lot more death, even though it is seen through the first world lens of a post-HBO creative freedom and a post-9/11 engagement with mortality and violence?
I think you're using a bit of hyperbole here, but for the most part, you're making a valid point. Modern Treklit seems very much influenced both by the increased creative freedom and sophistication displayed in modern media outlets like HBO, and by the increasingly interconnected post-9/11 world where the old boundaries of First, Second, and Third Worlds are all breaking down. I've thought for a while that the undercurrent of the events of Destiny
and Typhon Pact
-- of the Federation becoming less relatively powerful than it used to be due to losses of worlds, population, and ships, and of these smaller powers becoming relatively more powerful -- mirrors in part modern America's fixation on its own gradual fall from "only remaining superpower" status and on other nations' (especially China's) general rise to the status of Great Powers as the world reverts from a unipolar to multipolar paradigm.