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Old January 22 2012, 10:41 PM   #1
apenpaap
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Cardassian first contact?

I was just thinking it could've been nice if they'd shown first contact with the Cardassians on Enterprise. Unlike the Ferengi or the Borg, they could actually do that without violating any canon (I think, at least. I'm not entirely sure, but I don't think it was ever mentioned when first contact with the Cardies was made). I think the best way to do it would not be the usual way first contacts seem to go, with them being the antagonists of the episode, but rather to have them work together with Archer for some common cause (Klingons or Romulans making trouble?), though clearly with their own interests in mind. During the episode, humans might also notice some of the rather less pleasant aspect of Cardassian society, which leads to a discussion that seems to go into the direction of having the Cardies become the villains after all, only for them to work together anyway.
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Old January 22 2012, 10:46 PM   #2
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

Considerin' how far the Cardassians are supposed to be, and that their technology was shown to be less than the Federation's level, I would have had serious problems if a warp five ship made contact with the Union.

But that may just be me...

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Old January 22 2012, 10:48 PM   #3
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

Somehow I always got the feeling that the Spoonheads were relatively recent first contacts, lets say 2340s or something like that. I never got the feeling that the Federation had had them as neighbours for hundreds of years dating back to Archer's time.

Although for that I never imagined that the Borg or Ferengi would have been mooching around a Starfleet ship in the 2350s either.
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Old January 22 2012, 11:01 PM   #4
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

od0_ital wrote: View Post
Considerin' how far the Cardassians are supposed to be, and that their technology was shown to be less than the Federation's level, I would have had serious problems if a warp five ship made contact with the Union.

But that may just be me...

That's a very good point, I hadn't considered that. Julian Bashir's comments about Bajor being the edge of the wilderness in Emissary do place Bajor and Cardassia quite far away (well, either that or he was being very Earth-centric, the same way people from a country's capital city often consider most of the rest of the country to consist of farms. An attitude I don't put past the young doctor). Ao you're right, that and the Cardies' lower technological capabilities in the 24th century makes 22nd century contact unlikely (well, unless the Cardies were ahead in the 22nd century but just didn't develop as fast. Which is a possibility gives that their society has a severe lack of freedom of speech, which certainly could hold back technological progress).

Somehow I always got the feeling that the Spoonheads were relatively recent first contacts, lets say 2340s or something like that. I never got the feeling that the Federation had had them as neighbours for hundreds of years dating back to Archer's time.
I'd place first contact with them in the 2310s or 20s at the latest, considering their war with the federation was in the 2340s, IIRc, and the Cardies don't seem likely to go to war with someone without collecting ample intelligence about them first.
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Old January 22 2012, 11:08 PM   #5
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

Didn't the Organians or someone mention them in Observer Effect?
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Old January 22 2012, 11:32 PM   #6
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

I'm sure that, had the show not been cancelled, they'd have done a Cardassian episode, even if TNG or DS9 had made it explicitly clear that first contact wasn't for another 200 years!

IIRC, there was a Cardassian among the corpses on the station in "Dead Stop". And, of course, Uhura ordered a "Cardassian Sunrise" in the shipyard bar in STXI.
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Old January 22 2012, 11:40 PM   #7
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

On the subject of Cardassian contact with the Federation and its member worlds:

I suppose it depends on how "official" the contact is, or the degree of knowledge the Federation has. It's likely that the Federation worlds knew of a nation called Cardassia for decades if not centuries before official contact. At least, they knew that a world by that name was out there. Cardassia was, we've been told, part of the galactic community in some capacity as early as the 22nd century ("Enterprise" established that Cardassians had enough space-going capability to reach Organian haunts by then, and Iloja of Prim was mentioned as living on Vulcan during that period). However, because Cardassia was presumably not a planet of note - just one of thousands of unremarkable worlds - it probably got entered into records without anyone in the Federation core sectors bothering with it or making official contact. A Vulcan ship trades with a Kressari ship, say, which previously traded with a Cardassian outpost - the Vulcans enter Cardassia into their cultural database as a minor, somewhat distant planet with which their trade partners interact. It was just a world out there somewhere. Or so I assume. I also assume Federation citizens and Cardassians no doubt met every now and then, but never officially, and their governments weren't concerned with each another. By the 2310s, however, it changes, because now the military expansion is beginning. Cardassia is no longer just an unremarkable world but a nascent local power.
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Old January 22 2012, 11:41 PM   #8
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

Sandoval wrote: View Post
Somehow I always got the feeling that the Spoonheads were relatively recent first contacts, lets say 2340s or something like that. I never got the feeling that the Federation had had them as neighbours for hundreds of years dating back to Archer's time.
My impression is that the Cardassians have been known to the Federation for quite some time (see the mention of the Cardassian Sunrise in Trek XI and Dax's mention of Emory meeting a Cardassian poet in exile on Vulcan), but it wasn't until the early-to-mid 24th century that they actually became a significant power in the Alpha Quadrant. In fact, that would help explain why they were so willing to join the Dominion: as the "new kids" in the area, they probably had a bit of an inferiority complex compared to the Federation, Klingons, and Romulans.
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Old January 23 2012, 12:08 AM   #9
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

A Cardassian in exile on Vulcan makes sense, since Vulcans had better warp drives/higher speeds durin' the ENT era. But it isn't like the Vulcans really wanted humanity runnin' 'round shakin' hands with everyone around...so, they probably kept the exile under wraps, rather than sayin', "Oh, hey, we got this Cardassian ya might want to interview..."

And Uhura's orderin' of a drink doesn't mean anything, since it occurred *after* Nero's ship arrived & altered the timeline! So, ha!

Plus, just 'cause I can order a can of Foster's in a bar, that doesn't mean I've ever met an Australian...
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Old January 23 2012, 04:48 AM   #10
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

I always figured Cardassia had been heard of in the 23rd century--without much information--but that first contact occurred sometime while the Enterprise-B was in service. Presumably after Tuesday.
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Old January 23 2012, 08:17 PM   #11
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

The Cardassians were mentioned by the Organians in Observer Effect and there was a Cardassian hooked up to the creepy self repair station so there was evidence of some level of Cardassian exploration during that time frame.

However I think that the Union had other priories on the rim ward area of its territories,(perhaps due to a conflict with a never seen race?)so did not turn their eyes to the Federation's manor until the early 24th century.

Maybe...

But with the Obsidian Order who knows how early the Cardassians took an 'unofficial' notice of the Vulcans and their upstart Human allies?
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Old January 23 2012, 11:07 PM   #12
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

od0_ital wrote: View Post
A Cardassian in exile on Vulcan makes sense, since Vulcans had better warp drives/higher speeds durin' the ENT era. But it isn't like the Vulcans really wanted humanity runnin' 'round shakin' hands with everyone around...so, they probably kept the exile under wraps, rather than sayin', "Oh, hey, we got this Cardassian ya might want to interview..."
I see no reason to think they even thought about it in terms of, "Oh, let's hide this alien from the Humans." I mean, frankly, Earth was only one of several client worlds Vulcan unofficially dominated. It's more likely that he just didn't attract much attention from anyone -- he was a guy in exile from some distant world nobody cared about, and so he wasn't paid much attention.

And Uhura's orderin' of a drink doesn't mean anything, since it occurred *after* Nero's ship arrived & altered the timeline!
Well, there's that, but it's also possible that Cardassian products reached the Federation core worlds decades before formal first contact through intermediaries. After all, Europeans were wearing Chinese silk long before they had regular contact with China.
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Old January 24 2012, 10:50 AM   #13
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

I never got the feeling that the Federation had had them as neighbours for hundreds of years dating back to Archer's time.
The thing is, Earth's gonna have lots of neighbors in Archer's time already. And most of those won't be happy about letting Earthlings trespass on their way to the universe beyond.

Cardassians could be just next door to Earth's next door. But until the Federation assimilates the first next door, access to those already theoretically known peoples beyond is going to be on the level of rumors, unofficial contacts, shady deals and clandestine liaisons. And since Cardassia in turn is likely to get its share of rumors about the UFP, they will be more than happy to have a buffer zone between their expanding Union and this competing mega-empire.

The Ferengi and the Cardassians seem like old friends; Quark was doing business with Dukat way back, at least. Both could sit relatively close to the Federation, but beyond a belt of civilizations that only succumbed to UFP rule in the early 24th century. Indeed, we're seeing something of a double buffer in DS9: many of the civilizations around Bajor are hostile to the UFP and sympathetic (or at least subservient) to Cardassia. Might be the UFP got its first real access to Cardassia only after fighting its way through all that rabble in the mid-24th century war.

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Old January 25 2012, 01:31 AM   #14
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

Most of what we know of the 23rd Century comes from Kirk's missions. Cardassia could be in the opposite direction of his travels, so he would not have encountered them other than the odd mention in reports. Other UFP commanders may know them very well.
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Old January 25 2012, 02:57 AM   #15
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Re: Cardassian first contact?

For whatever it's worth, the novels have established that Federation-Cardassian first contact took place in 2327, during the administration of Federation President Thelianaresth "Thelian" th'Vorothishria of Andor.
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