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Old July 17 2013, 05:27 AM   #90
Crazy Eddie
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Re: Marines and Combat Personel?

blssdwlf wrote: View Post
If there were separate DS9 Starfleet Military guys you would think we would've seen them in the ground combat scenarios?

Because since all of the main characters are Starfleet, the only time we ever see ground combat is when Starfleet is sent to do it. Which is, apparently, an INCREDIBLY rare occurrence.

But I could ask the same question: If the Andorians are still members of the Federation, you would think we would've seen them... EVER?

Like I said, the two absences are probably related.

And if we're going on the military ranks of the MACOs which consisted of ground forces-type ranks then Colonel West of Starfleet would equate to the Military.
That or Colonel West is the MACO liaison to Starfleet. It would explain why he is one of exactly two Starfleet officers we have ever seen to ever be referred to by that rank (the other being Kira Nerys, who served on DS9 in a similar capacity between Starfleet and the Bajoran Military).

It might be more beneficial to your argument if you addressed the absence of MACOs before the Andorians.
I'm not sure the two are unrelated. Starfleet, after all, is dominated by humans; it's likely, based on what we know of the Federation, that MACO is dominated by Andorians.

Perhaps. Although 24th century tech might be more compact and involving portable shields and combat drones.
That's kinda what I meant.

Since they were doing live wargames it would make sense that they used actual ships rather than drones. Firing low-power phasers for the wargame makes sense as it has the exact same performance and need not be simulated. It makes sense that a military wargame would want to be as realistic as possible and this would indicate the testing was beyond using unmanned drones and such.
But it doesn't appear they actually tested it with drones at all, in fact by all accounts this was the first time M5 had ever been used in the field.

My basic point is that a military organization wouldn't take five of its ships away from their patrol duties for an experiment like this unless all five of those ships were also testing some vital new system and/or training their crews in some specific scenario, as the Navy does with the Top Gun school and the Air Force does with Red Flag. It's almost unheard of, in those cases, for an entire squadron to be pulled off of active duty JUST to run mock engagements against a UAV or to test a new weapon system.

IOW, military readiness precludes that level of advanced field testing; M5 would have had his first trials in a Starfleet proving ground, probably retrofitted to a training vessel or a smaller starship that was not scheduled for deployment in the immediate future. The "wargames" would have occurred later, with a fully-tested and fully-operational M5 unit that had already demonstrated basic operational capacity in the proving ground, in which case it wouldn't be a test of the M5 so much as a genuine war game to see how the M5 would perform under more realistic wartime conditions.

If your point was more specific to periods of peace time then I wouldn't be debating you However since you lump the entirety of Starfleet's existence into a non-military organization then that's where you took it too broadly.
I doubt it even makes a difference. You, like many people, assume that ONLY a military organization could participate in combat or a full-scale (declared or otherwise) war, and that Starfleet would not have participated unless the declaration of its new status had been made.

This assumption has no factual support, though, and is already contradicted by real-world historical precedent as well as the in-universe precedent established by Earth Starfleet a century earlier. Starfleet need not be codified as a military organization to act in that role, especially if such precedent already exists in interstellar law (which it obviously does, given that many races -- the Vulcans, for example -- do not overtly differentiate between their armed and unarmed services).

Basically, organizations do not casually "go military" and then just as casually cease to be the military just because of politics at the time. Starfleet swings back and forth between being more or less militaristic, to be sure, but "the military" is a legal as well as political definition and is not an institutional label that can be assigned temporarily or conveniently.

It's a bit like "the police." The neighborhood watch is NOT a police force despite the fact that they often work with the police to help solve crimes and keep neighborhoods safe. In the event of a riot, the neighborhood watch may go out in force to protect their neighborhoods and help police officers keep track of what's going on, and the police may even deputize the neighborhood watch en masse to help stem the violence. But even deputized, the neighborhood watch never BECOMES a police force; before, during and after the riots they have no legal standing as peace officers, despite their temporary operational mandate to assist in the enforcement of the law.

What I meant by "becoming military" would be a fundamental shift in Starfleet's basic priorities by a legislative act of the Federation council, granting Starfleet a wider range of defense responsibilities and privileges, not least of which is the capacity to directly protect military secrets. This is a capacity that Starfleet does not actually have, as we learn in "The Drumhead", and can be inferred from from TOS through DS9 that the concept of "classified technology" isn't one Starfleet actually maintains beyond a very strong and logical preference NOT to let enemy governments access their technology. Moreover, the militarization of Starfleet wouldn't just change their legal powers and authorities, it would have to establish a new set of regulations and directives that would amend Starfleet's charter and altering its mission statement to:
"To maintain, train and equip combat-ready Starfleet forces capable of winning wars, deterring aggression and maintaining freedom of space."

It would, in other words, be the redefinition under Federation law of what Starfleet actually is. They would cease to be an exploration agency; they would never be an exploration agency again. They might still do some exploring, they might still conduct scientific research, but that would no longer be their PURPOSE or their priority or even their way of doing business.

When Starfleet in "Wrath of Khan" is referred to as "The Military"
And referred to incorrectly by an impulsive brat with daddy issues. We've been over this before.
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