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Old April 23 2013, 05:00 PM   #61
bullethead
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

Hartzilla2007 wrote: View Post
Sci wrote: View Post
Whether you like it or not, the Federation simply is not as militaristic as modern Western societies.
They don't have to be as militaristic as modern Western societies, they just need the level of militarism that the TOS Federation's Starfleet had.
THIS. I'm tired of the Federation learning of a threat and then doing nothing until it's too late. You know things are bad when the guys who created a bioweapon to genocide an entire species in charge of an interstellar empire are the most competent, logical, and clearminded people working for the good guys.
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Old April 23 2013, 11:43 PM   #62
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

Gary7 wrote: View Post
Diplomacy doesn't always mean making the logical choices.
Respectfully, untrue. "Logic" is merely consistant method by which one reasons and assesses (there are many branches or "schools of thought"), Furthermore, "diplomacy" is always done with purpose and in accordance to a set or code of principles (logic) so "Diplomacy" IS a process of "logic" in that it is a means to end (as Spock says in Star Trek VI).

I personally don't agree with the Federation banning cloaking device use, but I understand why they did it.
I don't. Diplomacy usually comes down to either a "quid pro quo" or as an uliteral act. Sadly, we cannot assume facts or circumstances not entered into evidence by the writers so we can only infer, at this point, a unilateral act.

The DS9 episode "Statistical Probabilities" is an example of how a logically derived at solution of unilateral action can be wrong.

Frankly, condoning it would mean many vessel coming from many different species equipped with it, making it easy for rogue elements to take advantage. Cloaked vessels are extremely difficult to track.
That doesn't hold up though as this only restricted The Federation. Klingons and Romulans still had it. The Cardassians were likely not bound by the treaty. The Gorn, Tholiens, Dominion, Borg, etc. were not bound by this treaty. So the Federation still had the same, if not greater, threat of rogue vessels employing cloaking devices to their constant disadvantage.

"In universe" I could see Starfleet justifying certain ships having a cloaking device installed...
Except the episode "Pegasus" is all about there being no such lawful exceptions or exemptions.

Anwar wrote: View Post

And? That doesn't mean they gave up NOTHING.
Can't assume facts not in evidence - we can only go by what the writers gave us ... not what they didn't.

And the Feds then did "The Enterprise Incident", capturing a cloaking device and a ranking Commander.
Your point being?

The Romulans already had Warp, just not warships as powerful as Klingon ones. The Klingons got the better end of THAT deal.
Untrue. In "Balance of Terror" it is stated the Romulan ship ran on impulse engines and that the cloaking device took a lot of energy. In the "Enterprise Incident" it is said the Romulan Star and Klingon empires had exchanged technology and ship designs and is the first instance of Romulans displaying warp speed capabilities. All-in-all, it was a pretty equal trade all things considered.

...No it didn't. They still worked on multiple ways of detecting cloaks (many of which work fine).
Such as? Cloaked ships were continued to be used because they gave a consistant level of advantage - why continue to use a device that has a stated high level of energy consumption)?

And why continue to write it in if it does not motivate or enhance the drama?

To be honest, even RDM (back in the old AOL forum) said it was a bit of bad patch of writing (my paraphrasing as I did not archive the "Ask RDM" folders but he was quite open and prone to honest self-evaluation <-- My opinion).

It wasn't unilateral.
Based on? Where and what was the quid pro quo?

Sci wrote: View Post
Whether you like it or not, the Federation simply is not as militaristic as modern Western societies.
Again, with all due respect ... can't really say that. TOS, TNG and DS9 mirrored, by design, contemporary real world dynamics. It has even been promoted as such - that is how it satisfied the most basic tenents of sound drama in terms of relatability and relevance.

I would also add the reasons and points I make previously in this post.
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Old April 24 2013, 04:49 AM   #63
Anwar
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

Danger Ace wrote: View Post
Can't assume facts not in evidence - we can only go by what the writers gave us ... not what they didn't.
And nothing suggests the Feds were the only ones giving up anything. It wasn't important to mention what the Rommies gave up, just the Feds side of things.

Your point being?
That the Feds responded in kind. They captured the Romulan tech and took a ranking officer captive. Arguably more damage done than what the Romulans did in Balance of Terror by wrecking some minor outposts.

Untrue. In "Balance of Terror" it is stated the Romulan ship ran on impulse engines and that the cloaking device took a lot of energy.
You misunderstand, when Balance of Terror was written the idea was the Impulse still meant FTL, just less than Full Warp Drive. The Romulan ship had FTL, that one ship just didn't have full Warp capacity. The story wouldn't have made sense otherwise.

Such as? Cloaked ships were continued to be used because they gave a consistant level of advantage - why continue to use a device that has a stated high level of energy consumption)?
Because the Romulans couldn't develop anything better.

And why continue to write it in if it does not motivate or enhance the drama?
It's Iconic to Trek, mainly.

Again, with all due respect ... can't really say that.
Like I said, I'm happy the Federation isn't the same bland Space Military Dictatorship most unoriginal sci-fi series use.
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Old April 24 2013, 12:46 PM   #64
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

bullethead wrote: View Post
Hartzilla2007 wrote: View Post
Sci wrote: View Post
Whether you like it or not, the Federation simply is not as militaristic as modern Western societies.
They don't have to be as militaristic as modern Western societies, they just need the level of militarism that the TOS Federation's Starfleet had.
THIS. I'm tired of the Federation learning of a threat and then doing nothing until it's too late. You know things are bad when the guys who created a bioweapon to genocide an entire species in charge of an interstellar empire are the most competent, logical, and clearminded people working for the good guys.
That's the first time I heard anybody refer to the criminals from Section 31 as competent, logical and clear-minded.
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Old April 24 2013, 08:55 PM   #65
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

horatio83 wrote: View Post
bullethead wrote: View Post
Hartzilla2007 wrote: View Post

They don't have to be as militaristic as modern Western societies, they just need the level of militarism that the TOS Federation's Starfleet had.
THIS. I'm tired of the Federation learning of a threat and then doing nothing until it's too late. You know things are bad when the guys who created a bioweapon to genocide an entire species in charge of an interstellar empire are the most competent, logical, and clearminded people working for the good guys.
That's the first time I heard anybody refer to the criminals from Section 31 as competent, logical and clear-minded.
Really? There are actually a lot of jingoistic, proto-fascist types on the TrekBBS who attribute all sorts of virtues to Section 31.
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Old April 24 2013, 09:53 PM   #66
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

Anwar wrote: View Post
And nothing suggests the Feds were the only ones giving up anything.
You mean aside from the Klingons and Romulans using cloaked ships while the Federation has none? Even if the Romulans or Klingons gave up something it would still have been an idiotic, needlessly self-hobbling concession for the Federation to make. As presented, there was zero common sense or wisdom to it


It wasn't important to mention what the Rommies gave up, just the Feds side of things.
I disagree. What was it that motivated the Pegasus experiments? Some in Starfleet feeling the Federation had put themselves at a disadvantage.

So, it would have been in the interest of the story to mention a reason why or concession gained to further illustrate why the experiments were wrong.

As it was, one could not help but agree and sympathise with the rogue elements within Starfleet - which is also why Section 31 has been so warmly embraced by so many.

That the Feds responded in kind. They captured the Romulan tech and took a ranking officer captive. Arguably more damage done than what the Romulans did in Balance of Terror by wrecking some minor outposts.
In kind? Hardly. The Romulans came in and massacred ... the Enterprise did not.

Those "minor outpost" were established by treaty to monitor compliance and were populated. The Romulans crossed into Federation space, destroyed outposts and murdered people without provocation.

The Federation, on the other hand, was provoked (by the actions shown in "Balance of Terror") to obtain a cloking device in order to study and neutalize that advantage it represented.

You misunderstand, when Balance of Terror was written the idea was the Impulse still meant FTL, just less than Full Warp Drive. The Romulan ship had FTL, that one ship just didn't have full Warp capacity. The story wouldn't have made sense otherwise.
So, what is expressly said in one episode (Balance of Terror) is thrown out while what is not stated in another episode (Pegasus) is supposed and given weight?

It's Iconic to Trek, mainly.
"Iconic," yes ... but it still has to serve a purpose and justify itself. It does so by being a device to create tension and suspense - for it to do that it has to be shown or implied to be an effective advantage.

Heroes are only as great as the obstacles they overcome. To claim the cloaking device was of no consequence is to diminish the stature and accomplishments of our heroes.

In effect your arguements equate to "cutting off one's nose to spite their face."

Like I said, I'm happy the Federation isn't the same bland Space Military Dictatorship most unoriginal sci-fi series use.
What does the Federation not being a military dictatorship have to do with anything?

Are you suggesting the opposite of a military dictorship is a body that agree to foolish, unreciprocated treaty clauses? I agree that would be an atypical virtue.
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Old April 25 2013, 05:08 AM   #67
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

Danger Ace wrote: View Post
You mean aside from the Klingons and Romulans using cloaked ships while the Federation has none? Even if the Romulans or Klingons gave up something it would still have been an idiotic, needlessly self-hobbling concession for the Federation to make. As presented, there was zero common sense or wisdom to it
Maybe if you're a warmonger.

I disagree. What was it that motivated the Pegasus experiments?
Some guys just wanting to violate a treaty that kept billions from dying in a pointless war for something that wasn't much of an advantage anymore anyways.

So, it would have been in the interest of the story to mention a reason why or concession gained to further illustrate why the experiments were wrong.
Maybe, but it's hardly something a person can't realize on their own.

In kind? Hardly. The Romulans came in and massacred ... the Enterprise did not.
They both violated the Neutral Zone and came close to provoking war. It's a bit of a culture clash because to the Romulans "Balance of Terror" was apparently the standard thing to do (test the waters) whereas to the Feds it's barbaric.

So, what is expressly said in one episode (Balance of Terror) is thrown out while what is not stated in another episode (Pegasus) is supposed and given weight?
I'm not throwing out what BOT said, I'm clarifying it. "Impulse" still meant FTL, just a less powerful one. Without FTL the ship couldn't have gotten around so much in the first place.

Heroes are only as great as the obstacles they overcome. To claim the cloaking device was of no consequence is to diminish the stature and accomplishments of our heroes.
It's not of NO consequence, just one that they work to overcome without copying it.

What does the Federation not being a military dictatorship have to do with anything?
That talk about how the TNG Feds not being as militant as the 20th century.

Are you suggesting the opposite of a military dictorship is a body that agree to foolish, unreciprocated treaty clauses?
No, the opposite is a Polity that tries to avert major wars that would kill billions when there are other options that don't leave them crippled.
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Old April 25 2013, 05:44 AM   #68
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

Danger Ace wrote: View Post
Respectfully, untrue. "Logic" is merely consistant method by which one reasons and assesses (there are many branches or "schools of thought"), Furthermore, "diplomacy" is always done with purpose and in accordance to a set or code of principles (logic) so "Diplomacy" IS a process of "logic" in that it is a means to end (as Spock says in Star Trek VI).
Your pattern of conjecture is nearing legendary.
Logic is all about scope. When a policy is made, in one scope it may not appear logical while in another it may appear so.

Gary7 wrote:
I personally don't agree with the Federation banning cloaking device use, but I understand why they did it.
I don't. Diplomacy usually comes down to either a "quid pro quo" or as an uliteral act. Sadly, we cannot assume facts or circumstances not entered into evidence by the writers so we can only infer, at this point, a unilateral act.
You don't? Not logical enough for you? Pick a side and stick with it. In one respect it doesn't make logical sense for the Federation to turn away from a tactical advantage. DS9 demonstrated the need to use it, and a sensible policy made it possible. In TNG there was no such agreement with the Romulans; cloaking devices were deemed "dishonorable" and thus banned. But in DS9 it was a cop-out. It doesn't matter if you're borrowing a cloaking device or employing your own--it's still being used. Ownership is ultimately irrelevant. In the case of the Romulan cloak, they're supposed to "turn it over" when done. This "limits" its use by the Federation. Well, the Federation could impose its own internal policy on the limited use of a cloaking device, as I'd outlined previously. THAT makes logical sense. And screw the Romulans if they get offended by a superior cloaking device in Federation hands (transphasic cloak is like having an atomic bomb in 1945).


That doesn't hold up though as this only restricted The Federation. Klingons and Romulans still had it. The Cardassians were likely not bound by the treaty. The Gorn, Tholiens, Dominion, Borg, etc. were not bound by this treaty. So the Federation still had the same, if not greater, threat of rogue vessels employing cloaking devices to their constant disadvantage.
You're forgetting that there is a clearly defined scope of the Federation. "Federation Space". It's not Klingon, Romulan, or Cardassian space. It's a zone of trust with those worlds and species that are members of the Federation. If everybody is roaming about Federation space with cloaking devices... well, you just can't "traffic control" the place. You get these sensor ghosts all over of cloaked ships wandering about... which one is friendly and which one is a Romulan warbird that breached the Neutral Zone? That's my point. The Federation doesn't want to deal with that kind of risk.
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Old April 25 2013, 08:57 AM   #69
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

^

What are you two even arguing about at this point?
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Old April 25 2013, 04:22 PM   #70
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

Sci wrote: View Post
horatio83 wrote: View Post
bullethead wrote: View Post
THIS. I'm tired of the Federation learning of a threat and then doing nothing until it's too late. You know things are bad when the guys who created a bioweapon to genocide an entire species in charge of an interstellar empire are the most competent, logical, and clearminded people working for the good guys.
That's the first time I heard anybody refer to the criminals from Section 31 as competent, logical and clear-minded.
Really? There are actually a lot of jingoistic, proto-fascist types on the TrekBBS who attribute all sorts of virtues to Section 31.
Why is having a contingency in place for dealing with people who overtly stated their intent to take over the rest of the galaxy and impose their system of beliefs on people bad? For that matter, why does supporting pragmatism equal jingoism and facism? Especially when, in the context of Trek, Section 31's existence seems to be justified by the Federation's demonstrated incompetence and the fact that most of the galaxy seems to be populated by douchebags?

Also, ignoring the questionable TrekLit material (YMMV) does wonders for providing a more balanced view of Section 31.
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Old April 25 2013, 10:38 PM   #71
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

Anwar wrote: View Post
Danger Ace wrote: View Post
You mean aside from the Klingons and Romulans using cloaked ships while the Federation has none? ... As presented, there was zero common sense or wisdom to it
Maybe if you're a warmonger.
No warmongering. Just the opposite in fact as history has shown us that the biggest invite to war is one side feeling the risk is disproportionately small in relation to the percieved reward. Which is partly what the Romulan Commander and Spock were both speaking to in the episode "Balance of Terror."

I disagree. What was it that motivated the Pegasus experiments?
Some guys just wanting to violate a treaty ...
No, that's an unfortunately shallow interpretation that I'm sure a great many writers would find dispiriting (especially from a fanbase that was once known for it's uncommon sophistication and ability to handle relatively complex storytelling).

They both violated the Neutral Zone and came close to provoking war. It's a bit of a culture clash because to the Romulans "Balance of Terror" was apparently the standard thing to do (test the waters) whereas to the Feds it's barbaric.
I would politely suggest that perhaps you should review both episodes and then review your statement for correctness.

I'm not throwing out what BOT said, I'm clarifying it.
Respectfully, your "clarification" is based on what?

"Ockham's razor" states the hypothesis with fewest assumptions should be chosen. Everyone of your response has been based on assumption while my central thesis has not, therfore, I would humbly assert mine is in superior position.

What does the Federation not being a military dictatorship have to do with anything?
That talk about how the TNG Feds not being as militant as the 20th century.
Not true. Many examples of the TNG era being just as militant as the TOS era (plus an extra dash of smug haughtiness and hypocrisy added to taste).

No, the opposite is a Polity that tries to avert major wars that would kill billions when there are other options that don't leave them crippled.
Again, we know from history the tragic irony of war coming about precisly because oneside attempted to avert conflict through appeasement, and when that policy fails it usually comes with a price tag many times more than it would have been if situations had been delt with more succinctly.

Just look at the situations of Iran and North Korea for modern examples.

Gary7 wrote: View Post
Logic is all about scope. When a policy is made, in one scope it may not appear logical while in another it may appear so.
Please demonstrate where what you say is in conflict with what I have said and how it fits with the claim "Diplomacy is not rooted in logic." All you appear to say is one man's logic may not be someone else's yet concedes there is a logic on both sides.

Pick a side and stick with it.
Please illustrate where I have flip-flopped.

In one respect it doesn't make logical sense for the Federation to turn away from a tactical advantage. DS9 demonstrated the need to use it, and a sensible policy made it possible. ... And screw the Romulans if they get offended by a superior cloaking device in Federation hands (transphasic cloak is like having an atomic bomb in 1945).
So how does this go against or even apply to what I've said?

All of what you say occurs after the time of "Pegasus." The fact that exceptions were negotiated after the episode only furthers my point that in and of itself the Federation's ban on cloaking technology was short-sighted and ill-reasoned in the first place.

If everybody is roaming about Federation space with cloaking devices... well, you just can't "traffic control" the place.


R. Star wrote: View Post
^

What are you two even arguing about at this point?
Perhaps this little tutorial will help explain things.




bullethead wrote: View Post
Why is having a contingency in place for dealing with people who overtly stated their intent to take over the rest of the galaxy and impose their system of beliefs on people bad?
It's not.

For that matter, why does supporting pragmatism equal jingoism and facism?
It doesn't.
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Old April 25 2013, 10:58 PM   #72
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

bullethead wrote: View Post
Sci wrote: View Post
horatio83 wrote: View Post
That's the first time I heard anybody refer to the criminals from Section 31 as competent, logical and clear-minded.
Really? There are actually a lot of jingoistic, proto-fascist types on the TrekBBS who attribute all sorts of virtues to Section 31.
Why is having a contingency in place for dealing with people who overtly stated their intent to take over the rest of the galaxy and impose their system of beliefs on people bad?
Now I tend to perfer the TOS federation as it was less arrogant and naive, but to answer your question becuase their "contingency" was to commit genocide.

Not only that but it wasn't anywhere close to a justified response seeing as at that point the Dominion was just like every other empire the Federation clashed with heck the "people who overtly stated their intent to take over the rest of the galaxy and impose their system of beliefs on people" pretty much describes the Romulans, Klingons, and Cardassians and all three of them sent disguised spies into the federation to disrupt it and the federation never decided to commit genocide against them.
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Old April 25 2013, 11:35 PM   #73
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

Hartzilla2007 wrote: View Post
Now I tend to perfer the TOS federation as it was less arrogant and naive, but to answer your question becuase their "contingency" was to commit genocide.

Not only that but it wasn't anywhere close to a justified response seeing as at that point the Dominion was just like every other empire the Federation clashed with heck the "people who overtly stated their intent to take over the rest of the galaxy and impose their system of beliefs on people" pretty much describes the Romulans, Klingons, and Cardassians and all three of them sent disguised spies into the federation to disrupt it and the federation never decided to commit genocide against them.
I think it's fairly justified after the Founders wiped out New Bajor, declared that they would impose their order on the galaxy, caused the destruction/crippling of the Obsidian Order and Tal Shiar, created a slave race that was addicted to drugs, and attempted to cause a war between the Federation and Tkzenthi. Aside from a few examples like Odo and Laas (who were deliberately flung out into space), the entire species apparently supported xenophobic and expansionist policies and refused to negotiate a peaceful resolution to the conflict. In a case like that, genocide is the only practical contingency.
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Old April 25 2013, 11:56 PM   #74
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

Hartzilla2007 wrote: View Post
Now I tend to perfer the TOS federation as it was less arrogant and naive, but to answer your question becuase their "contingency" was to commit genocide.
The Federation was just as prone to the option of genocide in dealing with the Borg and that was without any known link to Section 31 which illustrates the federation has always shown that it is willing to go "nuclear" when they feel sufficently provoked or threatened.


Not only that but it wasn't anywhere close to a justified response seeing as at that point the Dominion was just like every other empire the Federation clashed with...
I, for one, disagree.

Though it wasn't known to the AQ allience but the one of the goals of the Changelings/Dominion was genocide of humans showing paranoia can be justified and valid in terms of survival.

One underlying foundational aspect of many peoples argument seems to be a belief that a civilation somehow has a duty to commit what amounts to be suicide should the price of their survival appear too brutal or harsh to any degree - to me, that is an unrealistic and untenable point-of-view.

So untenable that RDM and others (credited previously in this thread) had to try and retcon things with the invention of "Section 31" - a creation I, as fan since September 1966, wholeheartedly approve and endorse.

I do not view myself or other likeminded souls as "warmongers" or "jingoists" or anything else other than realists who undestand that there are times when a people can only be as civilized and "honorable" as circumstances are pragmatically percieved to allow.

The mounting evidence and trending data did, in my opinion, allow for Section-31 to draw certain inferences and logically conclude that infecting the Changlings was a justifiable and reasonable course of action when waging a war of survival (as opposed to one fought for territorial or material gain).

The Changelings/Dominion refused to negotiate and had stated ambitions of subjugation and supression of the AQ (and unbeknownst to the Federation genocide of the human race). So both during and in hindsight we see that Section 31 did not operate without thought or reason - that there was merit to their methods and rationale.
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Old April 26 2013, 02:17 AM   #75
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Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?

bullethead wrote: View Post
I think it's fairly justified after the Founders wiped out New Bajor,
And the Cardassians apparently massacred a federation colony and the Klingons planned to use poisoned grain to take out a federation colonization effort.

declared that they would impose their order on the galaxy,
So did the Klingons, Cardassians, and Romulans

caused the destruction/crippling of the Obsidian Order and Tal Shiar,
So they cripples intelligence agencies of their rivals, big deal. Not really a good justification for genocide

created a slave race that was addicted to drugs,
Again not really a good justification for genocide

and attempted to cause a war between the Federation and Tkzenthi.
And The Romulans tried to start wars between the future founding members of the federation.

the entire species apparently supported xenophobic and expansionist policies
Which is something said about the Romulans

and refused to negotiate a peaceful resolution to the conflict.
The Klingons had to be forced to make peace with the federation once by the Organians basically threatening to smight them and then becuase of the environmental issues on their homeworld after Praxis exploded and even then it took the sacrifice of the Enterprise-C to make it seemingly permanent and then Gowron came along an screwed that up.

And the Romulans didn't seem to use diplomacy much in their dealing with the proto-federation and they didn't have any trouble violating the treaty that ended the war they fought the early federation a century later

In a case like that, genocide is the only practical contingency.
And yet when their other rivals pulled similar stunts the federation didn't use genocide against them, especially when there WASN'T a war on.
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