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Old December 6 2012, 02:15 AM   #20
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Re: Best and worst examples of diplomacy in Star Trek

C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
bullethead wrote: View Post
C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
And the Federation's response was to sneak a warship into their territory on a mission of cowboy diplomacy. That didn't make the Founders' view of the Federation any better.
I don't think that anything would've made them view the Federation positively, considering the fact that they've had a few thousand years of circle-linking that reinforced their anti-solid biases. Hell, it took Section 31's bioweapon to bring them to the negotiating table.
I think it was actually Odo that finally convinced the Founders that the Federation wasn't a threat--despite the bioweapon--and that was what really ended the war. The cure for the bioweapon was an incentive, but the Dominion did seem prepared to fight to the death without it.

In hindsight, it really seemed more like an issue of time before the Founders were convinced that not all solids were evil and out to get them.
I'm not entirely convinced of that, mostly because the female Changeling linked with Odo in The Search, then with the rest of the Founders and that should've told them that the Federation was no threat. But then they went, "Nah, we're going to impose order on the Alpha Quadrant" to Odo's face. Fast forward a few months and they not only take out a big chunk of the Tal Shiar and practically all of the Obsidian Order, but then follow that up with trying to start a war between the Federation and Tzenkethi. Later, they do succeed at starting wars between the Klingons and Cardassians, then between the Klingons and Federation. So unless we're talking centuries here, I'm not entirely sure the Founders would've changed their minds unless they pushed against the ropes and shown some mercy. The group-think of the Great Link is too strong.

Besides, the Dominion killed all those settlers on New Bajor before they kidnapped Sisko and Quark and blew up the Odyssey. All the blame for the war falls squarely on them.
Not entirely, because it does take two (or more) to have a war. The Federation had the option from the very beginning of hostilities of destroying the wormhole and sealing off the Gamma Quadrant and further contact with the Dominion. They chose not to.
Closing off the wormhole would've been a bad move strategically. First off all, doing so would prevent them from gathering intel on the Dominion at a time when they barely knew anything about them. Second, keeping the wormhole open allows the Federation to funnel the Dominion through a known chokepoint instead of worrying 75 years down the line about when and where the Dominion might show up. Third, closing up the wormhole would probably piss off the Bajorans, since their gods live there and their tolerance of Starfleet's presence depends a lot on the fact that DS9's CO is the Emissary. Fourth, it's better to keep the threat immediate and continue the military build up encouraged by the Borg incursions than kick the problem down the road 75 years, when most of Starfleet barely remembers hearing the Dominion in a history class and may not have closed the tech gap with the guys who had guns that went straight through Federation shields.

In a way, the initial contact between the Federation and the Dominion mirrored that a century earlier between the Federation and the Gorn in which the latter perceived the former as invaders and struck a deadly preemptive strike. The main difference is the scale, death toll, and length of time before both sides reached an accord.
Well yeah, that was because the Gorn were willing to actually negotiate a peace instead of committing multiple acts of galactic scale terrorism and pretending to make peace with people. The Gorn just wanted some land; the Founders wanted to force the entire galaxy into slavery due to their anti-Solid paranoia.
A business man and engineer discuss how to launch a communications satellite in the 1960s:
Biz Dev Guy: Your communications satellite has to be the size, shape, and weight of a hydrogen bomb.
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