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Old May 28 2014, 09:36 AM   #66
Re: Why did Picard Violate the Prime Directive in Nemesis??

-Yes, where the heck did Shinzon get his hands on thalaron? For that matter, where did he get B4?
I guess those would be a package: when you murder the entire Senate and take over as the dictator-for-life, you get access to all sorts of secret projects, and can have your pick. At least if the local Secret Service was the agency that helped you into power.

We don't know how long Shinzon had been in control of Romulus before the hero-specific events of the movie unfolded, thanks to the magic of editing. He might have been rummaging through Tal'Shiar closets for months before inviting the Federation over, as news of the coup would travel slowly from the hyper-isolationist Star Empire.

-Where did he get that huge ship? How could he have had it constructed right under the Romulans' noses? Who built it? The Remans? When would they have had the time, being, you know, slaves and all? I'd think the Romulans would keep records on the Remans' activities, wouldn't you?
But the Reman activities would involve building warships. After all, Data says Starfleet intelligence credits Remus with weapons factories.

That Shinzon says "he" built it at a "secret" yard can be interpreted in many ways, but I'd prefer that 1) Shinzon in the role of an experienced military commander from the field was an advisor when a bunch of Reman slaves under Romulan supervision built the vessel and 2) all Romulan yards are secret (both against foreign spies and domestic ones), and this one was just a tad more secret than the others, perhaps because the thalaron weapon was not intended to be public knowledge even within the military.

-What was the intention of the thalaron? It was obviously for Earth (which reinforces the theory that the Romulans were the ones who supplied it), but then why all of a sudden do the Romulans worry that Shinzon will destroy Earth? Isn't that, like, what they were planning all along?
The two venues of explanation would be that the Romulans had a different target planet in mind originally, or that the Romulans who worry about Earth are different from the Romulans who built the ship with the intent to destroy Earth.

Perhaps one faction helped Shinzon break free and another took advantage of this? Perhaps the two Fleet clowns who argue for an alliance with Shinzon at the beginning are not in close cahoots with Tal'Aura who uses thalaron to assassinate the Senate, despite the suggestive scene?

-Why does the Scimitar (and her Scorpion fighters) even look like it does? The Remans don't have any ships of their own, they're slaves! And if the Remans built it, what would their incentive be to make it look absolutely unlike any Romulan ship ever seen? Are the Remans ship designers when they're not hauling dilithium at the crack of their masters' whips?
Clearly, the thalaron weapon calls for massive special gear, which might dictate the design of that ship. And once you have the massive thalaron gun there, and the massive ship to carry it, things like disruptor banks and fighter bays can be an afterthought.

Still, the ship does look as if it were not designed for any specific mission. Thalaron bombardment calls for stealth (remember the multi-minute charge-up), so the ship has a cloak. But she shouldn't need heavy ship-to-ship armament in that case; modern weapons systems are deliberately designed so as not to encourage the operators to engage in foolish fights when those are contrary to the operating doctrine (no anti-aircraft weapons on submarines). And the fighters are compatible with neither ship-to-ship fighting nor Armageddon bombardment.

The thing does look like a customized floating center of operations for an Evil Overlord. Perhaps Shinzon's allies wanted their domesticated Spartacus to have that sort of thing, so that other factions of the Romulan military could not defeat him - and pulled crazy new "doctrines", "plans" and "official orders" out of their asses to justify the building of such a ship for "military" purposes.

I always got the impression that...
Lots of nods of agreement there.

...I trust no Remans were actually liberated in the coup, no members of the middle classes were inconvenienced, and Romulus will quickly recover from the putsch at the highest echelons, what with having a long tradition of backstabbing.

Timo Saloniemi
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