Paper Moon wrote:
If they hadn't diverted to the Klingons during season 4, and had moved the timeline of the war up by one year (so that the invasion began at the end of season 4 and the war ended at the end of season 6), then we could've had a (probably much better) season 7 focused on the aftermath.
(For you BBC/PBS fans, look at series six of Foyle's War, which focused on life in England after the end of the war in Europe, for a model.)
In that case, season 7 could've ended with the entry of Bajor into the Federation with a big celebration, worthy of a series finale. This would bring the show full circle, since it was Sisko's assignment in "Emissary" to bring Bajor into the Federation.
Very cool idea. That would've been the best way to have done Bajor's entry into the Federation. Ending (if he hadn't gone MIA in the Fire Caves) with Sisko now a one-star Admiral and Kira a Captain in Starfleet.
If I'm not mistaken, the Dominion War ended up filling up whatever time was available. Didn't they originally intend to wrap it up in four episode--Call to Arms and a Season six three-parter--that grew into a six episode arc that didn't even finish off the war? OTOH, not having to deal with Jadzia's death/Ezri's arrival might have given more flexibility with the Emissary narrative in the last season to have Sisko lead the Bajorans back toward admittance in a manner consistent with Rapture.
ETA: It might be that Kira's journey simply ended up standing in for Bajor's journey: she ends up being the example for the Cardassian resistance, she ends up at the final moment of the Founder's surrender, she is left in charge of the station.