I don't know if this has come up before but- given that INS was set during the Dominion War- how/why would the Federation Council agree to any kind of joint projects with the Son'a knowing, as Riker reveals during an early scene, the Son'a are one of the Dominion's primary suppliers or source of Ketracel-White for the Jem'Hadar in AQ? Seems like something that would be hard- if not impossible- for the Federation Council to simply ignore/overlook during a major war? Or was the Federation Council just REALLY that desperate by then? I'm wondering why they even thought to bring this up unless it was supposed to be important somehow? Did the Son'a ever appear (or were they ever even mentioned) in DS9. I'm on S7 of DS9 and never heard them brought up.......yet.
1. Picard was skeptical of the idea of collaboration and voiced his concerns to Admiral Dougherty, to which the latter replied, "Warp drive transformed a bunch of Romulan thugs into an empire. We can handle the Son'a." Clearly, the Federation was
desperate, but they also believed that any threat posed by the Son'a was less significant than what they were already contending with by fighting the Dominion.
2. There's a brief exchange between Weyoun and Damar about diverting Cardassian troops to protect a Son'a outpost during the seventh season, so their presence is referenced, however briefly.