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Old September 3 2012, 01:53 PM   #16
Anwar
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Re: What is a Neutral Zone?

I think, when Balance of Terror was written, that the idea was supposed to be the same as the Kzinti in Larry Niven's "Known Space" series: After they lost the war, they were punished by being confined to their home star system and only their home star system. The Neutral Zone really was supposed to be a cage to keep the Romulans out of the rest of the Galaxy.

Obviously, they changed their minds after that.
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Old September 3 2012, 03:00 PM   #17
Timo
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Re: What is a Neutral Zone?

...Good that the phrasing in the inaugural Romulan episode didn't paint them completely in the corner, then.

Having the RNZ form a shell around the inner parts of the Romulan home system works well on many levels. It allows for the long-tailed comet, for example. But the map with Romulus and Romii (or Rom II or whatever) doesn't look much like the map of a single star system, regardless of what the viewing angle might be. There was probably quite a bit of confusion at the time of the writing, then, about what was actually being depicted. And again, we should be thankful for that...

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Old September 3 2012, 03:57 PM   #18
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Re: What is a Neutral Zone?

Simple .... ME!
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Old September 4 2012, 04:17 AM   #19
Merry Christmas
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Re: What is a Neutral Zone?

Anwar wrote: View Post
Kzinti in Larry Niven's "Known Space" series: After they lost the war, they were punished by being confined to their home star system and only their home star system.
Timo wrote: View Post
Having the RNZ form a shell around the inner parts of the Romulan home system works well on many levels. It allows for the long-tailed comet,



Having the outposts be about where the orbit of Mars would be relative to Earth, makes the map shown in Balance of Terror work quite nicely. The neutral zone would just inside of that orbit.

It allows for the long-tailed comet we saw, Scotty's comment about impulse power makes more sense, and the outposts being situated in a solid iron asteroids could indict that the outposts are located in a Romulan's asteroid belt.

With the spread we see, a single ring of the inner Romulan star system would be comprised of approximately 140 outposts.

Of course this map doesn't work for any other episode involving the Romulans.


Last edited by Merry Christmas; September 4 2012 at 04:28 AM.
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Old September 5 2012, 09:03 AM   #20
Timo
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Re: What is a Neutral Zone?

With the spread we see, a single ring of the inner Romulan star system would be comprised of approximately 140 outposts.
It's an interesting coincidence in this model that the outpost carrying the number 1 is close to the twin worlds at the time of the episode... A possible further argument for a setup of greater scale and thus greater stability?

The point could also be made that the companion world of Romulus is named Remus in this episode already, not Romii or RomII - making it difficult to explain why those two spots would be close to each other in a map of a single star system.

But the main advantage of the single-system model, the explanation for the impulse reference, is intriguing enough. And never mind that high warp is used in the episode a lot, too. After all, other TOS episodes suggest that high warp inside a star system is actually really slow.

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Old September 9 2012, 11:35 PM   #21
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Re: What is a Neutral Zone?

From the episodes we know that

That there is border area that not part of the nutural zone, as the impression is that "The Tin Man" Takes place in the fronteir where the exact location of the two borders is not set.

Probes are allowed in the NZ, as in the episode "The Neutral zone" (IIRC) the Romulan commander uses the excuse of a robotic probe on why there is romulation communications in that area. Perhaps probes are allowed as mutual technical means to make sure parties do not build bases in the NZ.
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Old September 10 2012, 05:59 AM   #22
Merry Christmas
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Re: What is a Neutral Zone?

Distorted Humor wrote: View Post
... as the impression is that "The Tin Man" Takes place in the fronteir where the exact location of the two borders is not set.
My impression was that the events of Tin Man took place outside of both the Federation and the Empire, in open interstellar space -- unclaimed territory.

This would imply that the RNZ isn't a continuous bubble completely around the Romulans, but rather a buffer/wall in-between the Federation and Romulans. And the Romulans can move and grow in any direct they please, as long as it isn't towards the Federation.

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Old September 10 2012, 09:06 AM   #23
Timo
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Re: What is a Neutral Zone?

Going to see Tin Man isn't "expansion", though. At most, we learn that Romulan ships can slip past the Federation siege, which isn't really a miracle considering that they can cloak and that part of their realm borders on non-Federation turf such as the Klingon Empire.

Seeing how difficult if not impossible it is to prevent Romulans from crossing the RNZ, though, one would think Starfleet would have every incentive to fall hard on any ships found outside the Zone. There isn't likely to be a loophole in the RNZ treaty that would allow ships to exist on the wrong side unless the act of crossing can be verified... At least not after the first few incursions! So conversely, any ship found outside the RNZ is automatically guilty of crossing it, even if said ship currently is found in neutral space. Picard should be compelled to set an example every time he met Romulans outside Romulan space.

Then again, in many of the cases where Picard runs into Romulans outside the Zone, those are committing other offenses already, such as firing at our heroes, so the treaty violation issue need not be separately discussed. And he has received at least two genuine defectors, so shooting everybody at sight is not necessarily a good idea. But episodes like "Timescape" make one wonder... Why didn't Picard arrest the Romulan crew when no excuse for their presence in forbidden space was forthcoming?

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