I haven't seen this episode in a long time as I get angry after I saw it before since I think it's one of the worst episodes of the series. However, something that pisses me off even more about this one are the events in two of my favorite episodes, Homefront/Paradise Lost, and I have a simple question that brings these three episodes together.
What the hell was red squad still doing in service. I mean during the changling at home threat (Which never got resolved by the way) and the attempted Coup, Red Squad was an accessory to those events. I forgot if murder was involved, but I know treason was. So considering that yes at the time of the 4th season everyone knew that War was inevitable, why risk even having this "cadet group" still in service. Why wasn't it disbanded. Hell, if we bring in First Duty into this discussion, it seems like Starfleet Academy can't keep it's elite cadets in check and they have some serious internal issues. Isn't that a risk in itself to the war effort? I'm not saying disbanding Starfleet Academy, but why was Red Squad allowed to continue?
Anyway, Valiant and Profit and Lace are the two worst back to back group of episodes in the series, but I probably should watch them again (And I'm doing a rewatch where I'm not skipping episodes) to see if they still hold up to being bad.
I suspect that even with Layton in jail, there must have been other officers who were in on his attempted coup. Red Squad might have been saved for future and the cruse on Valiant might have been a good way to get the squad out of praying eyes of internal investigation.
Looking back I think Jake being there might have been oil in fire, I doubt members of Red Squad would have looked at the son of Ben Sisko, a man who brought their achievement to the ground, in favorable a light.