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Old July 3 2013, 03:06 AM   #187
The Wormhole
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Re: Scotty and his military comment

Crazy Eddie wrote: View Post
The Wormhole wrote: View Post
The Mighty Monkey of Mim wrote: View Post
Since WWII, Japan is constitutionally prohibited from having a military. They nonetheless have forces to fulfill necessary functions of a military, of course. But these forces are not legally a military, and they aren't called that. They're called the Self Defense Forces. I don't see why Starfleet can't appear and act as a military (and thus be understandably referred to as one by outsiders) and still at least technically not be one.
As I understand, Japan's defense force is just that, a defense force with no offensive capabilities.
Incorrect. The SDF's naval vessels are equipped with Harpoon antiship missiles and anti-submarine weapons. It operates 16 diesel-electric attack submarines and several guided missile cruisers that are closely based on the Arleigh Burke class Aegis destroyer.

To the extent that those weapon systems are incapable of launching attack and/or supporting ground operations on foreign soil, they are indeed "defensive" weapons.
What I meant was the SDF itself isn't capable of attacking another nation. In fact, if Japan were attacked, there's only so much the SDF could do and in a worse case scenario, Japan would have to rely on defense treaties it has with other nations.

Or so I think. Admittedly everything I know about Japan's defense comes from what I read in a Robert J Sawyer novel. But assuming I'm essentially correct, then Starfleet is indeed capable of launching an attack on another power, though they tend not to. And Starfleet can probably defend the Federation on its own.

Only when the civilian courts aren't available. In contrast: for stealing and blowing up the Enterprise among other violations of Starfleet regulations, Kirk stood before a civilian assembly -- overseen by the President -- to answer for those crimes.
Which of course are extenuating circumstances. Since Kirk and crew saved Earth from a probe that was tearing the planet apart, the President decided to personally step in and issue a pardon. Had there not been any space probe looking for whales, I'm sure Kirk and crew would have been court-martialed by Starfleet.
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