Re: General order 24, were Kir kand Scotty bluffing?
While I agree that Scott and Kirk didn't seem like they were bluffing I can't see Scotty just wiping out an entire half-planet of whatever they could of the major planetary cities in range without Kirk's reconfirmation or Spock's.
He won't launch an attack without later reconfirmation? If the Eminians kill the hostages in 30 minutes as promised, there would be no confirmation.
Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard: For duty and humanity! --Men in Black (1934)