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Old July 3 2013, 04:15 AM   #188
Crazy Eddie
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Re: Scotty and his military comment

The Wormhole wrote: View Post
What I meant was the SDF itself isn't capable of attacking another nation.
That is also incorrect. They're fully CAPABLE of doing so if they so choose; the fact that their ships aren't designed or chartered for that is what makes them "defensive" weapons.

If one day the SDF decided they were really pissed off at China and decided to pound Hong Kong with artillery fire, they could easily do so. That they probably wouldn't survive the Chinese counter-attack is the main reason why that will never happen (well, never again).

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.
Starfleet barely manages to defend EARTH most of the time. I think defending the entire Federation is probably asking a bit much.

I'm also reminded that Sisko tells Leyton in "Paradise Lost" that the other Federation worlds probably wouldn't take too kindly to Starfleet overthrowing the President and creating, effectively, a "military dictatorship." Assuming I'm essentially right about Federation laws vis a vis military buildup, then Leyton is making essentially the same calculation as Marcus -- his "strengthening Earth" is his belief that Starfleet must become a full military force to counter an alien threat -- and realizes that the current government is in no way prepared to allow this. Sisko explicitly mentions civil war (which is probably what the Founders were hoping for too) which suggests that the other Federation members have their own space forces that could, either individually or collectively, give Starfleet a run for its money.

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.
Which still doesn't explain why he was presiding over their trial, nor does it explain how the President manages to simply sidestep the Starfleet legal system for that one charge he DIDN'T pardon, thereby both demoting him and giving him command of a starship by Presidential fiat.

The more likely explanation is that the Starfleet judicial system is only relevant within Starfleet and only practiced on an ad hoc basis; it furthermore can be overruled at will by the civilian government, which is basically what happens to Kirk and McCoy in TUC.
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