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Old September 14 2012, 03:42 PM   #23
diankra
Commodore
 
Location: UK
Re: Federation Law of restricting cloaking device

A central point is that a treaty only has to make sense to those signing it AT THE TIME, whereas every onscreen reference has been in later years when it may be widely assumed to have been a bad mistake.
Clearly the Federation negotiators got something in return for the ban on cloaks that they felt was worth the price (they may have assumed anyway that Starfleet will always find a way to detect a cloak, an assumption supported by the speed with Data&Laforge or O'Brien&co always do just that, so they were giving away a useless technology).
It could be that it became obvious they were wrong within a very few years, and that the Cloaking Clauses in the treaty of Algeron are taught as Example Number One of How Not To Do It at the Federation Diplomatic Academy, but the UFP is stuck with them, until a) the Romulans agree to renegotiate those clauses, or b) The UFP decides to unilaterally abrogate the entire treaty, and lose all the benefits it presumably gets from other clauses.
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