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Old December 16 2012, 08:41 PM   #196
Timo
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Attack helicopters, armored fighting vehicles, and I believe the Marines still have their own tanks.
That's the point, yes: an "armored fighting vehicle" is just a substandard tank that stands no chance in a "real" fight. And that's by design, not merely because General Motors would be poor at building tanks for Marines or something. It's the tactical intent that these vehicles should steer well clear of battle, and settle for hauling troops to fighting locations and then giving some firecover. Leaving out any actual armor or armor-piercing weaponry is a good thing in increasing mobility and carrying capacity - but also in discouraging the AFV commanders from trying to engage heavy enemy vehicles in battle.

Ditto with the helicopters of Air Cavalry. Not even the purpose-built gunships are viable vehicles for fighting their peers; they deliver firepower, but they are designed to avoid actual fights, except against grossly "asymmetric" targets.

Which makes perfect sense. Forces intent on deploying and supporting infantry should have no business taking part in battles against actual fighting vehicles, because that would be senseless endangering of the infantry to no real gain. Vehicle forces capable of fighting tit-for-tat in turn should have no business providing rides of infantry, not for any significant length of time anyway.

and I believe the Marines still have their own tanks.
True enough. And the M60 is undeniably an actual tank, rather than a mere armored fighting vehicle. But whether the presence of tanks in an opposed amphibious assault is justified is something military history is yet to prove, as their use so far has been limited to unopposed landings and disastrously failed raids. Once the Marines are past the beach, it's time to let the Army in with its much better (read: heavier) tanks, so...

Incidentally, what would be the best equivalent of a tank in the Star Trek environment? Would there be any benefit to, say, a vehicle that is incapable of flight or spaceflight? In the "taking the beach" phase, or in the "beach taken, bring in the actual tanks" phase? And what dramatic aspects should be considered here?

Timo Saloniemi
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Old December 16 2012, 08:50 PM   #197
KamenRiderBlade
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Timo wrote: View Post
Incidentally, what would be the best equivalent of a tank in the Star Trek environment? Would there be any benefit to, say, a vehicle that is incapable of flight or spaceflight? In the "taking the beach" phase, or in the "beach taken, bring in the actual tanks" phase? And what dramatic aspects should be considered here?

Timo Saloniemi
From everything I've seen the Federation doesn't have any ground based vehicles. They have soldiers and shuttles for transport / support.

They basically can use shuttles like Russians use Hind's. Troop carrier / Close Air Support.

I don't see any value in ground based only vehicles by the time of TNG->VOY.

Air superiority / Fire Power / Mobility are all in shuttle / fighter platforms.

Ground forces only need to be there to hold positions.

If there was some sort of armor, it'd probably be some form of power armor to give each individual troop superior mobility, speed, defense, offense.

Power Armor would effectively be a huge force multiplier in making each troop that much more effective on the battle field.
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Old December 16 2012, 09:27 PM   #198
Timo
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Well, we have seen a few wheeled vehicles, one even being armed and used for cross-country purposes (ST:NEM). For some unknown reason, it was left without the ability to become airborne. Or perhaps it wasn't - Mythbusters ought to have made short work of Data's supposed jumping of the vehicle off a cliff into a waiting shuttle, unless there was actually an antigrav aboard the vehicle!

On the other hand, the ground fighting in "Nor the Battle to the Strong" involved something called "hoppers" rather than "shuttles", apparently capable of moving an entire platoon (as a Lieutenant was able to usher his men into one).

But that would be Dragoon/Air Cavalry/Marine stuff, as both vehicles appeared vulnerable to small arms fire. The question of fighting vehicles remains open.

Supposedly, weapons fire in Trek is stopped by shields, and shields alone. So a "Main Battle Tank" of 24th century fare might look like a sand buggy for all we know, and the difference between it and an "Infantry Fighting Vehicle" or "Light Reconnaissance Vehicle" of the era would be purely in the contents of the little black box in the trunk, the one containing the shield generator and the phaser capacitor.

Power armor is a big question mark. We actually see some in DS9 "Business As Usual", but only of an alien type. We don't hear exactly how Cardassians have mechanized their Mechanized Infantry (might be half-tracks or electric bicycles for all we know), but if O'Brien were facing Cardassian Mechas at Setlik III, we would do well to suppose that he himself knows how to operate the corresponding Starfleet model, too.

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Old December 16 2012, 09:46 PM   #199
Star Wolf
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Timo wrote: View Post
Attack helicopters, armored fighting vehicles, and I believe the Marines still have their own tanks.
That's the point, yes: an "armored fighting vehicle" is just a substandard tank that stands no chance in a "real" fight. And that's by design, not merely because General Motors would be poor at building tanks for Marines or something. It's the tactical intent that these vehicles should steer well clear of battle, and settle for hauling troops to fighting locations and then giving some firecover. Leaving out any actual armor or armor-piercing weaponry is a good thing in increasing mobility and carrying capacity - but also in discouraging the AFV commanders from trying to engage heavy enemy vehicles in battle.

Ditto with the helicopters of Air Cavalry. Not even the purpose-built gunships are viable vehicles for fighting their peers; they deliver firepower, but they are designed to avoid actual fights, except against grossly "asymmetric" targets.

Which makes perfect sense. Forces intent on deploying and supporting infantry should have no business taking part in battles against actual fighting vehicles, because that would be senseless endangering of the infantry to no real gain. Vehicle forces capable of fighting tit-for-tat in turn should have no business providing rides of infantry, not for any significant length of time anyway.

and I believe the Marines still have their own tanks.
True enough. And the M60 is undeniably an actual tank, rather than a mere armored fighting vehicle. But whether the presence of tanks in an opposed amphibious assault is justified is something military history is yet to prove, as their use so far has been limited to unopposed landings and disastrously failed raids. Once the Marines are past the beach, it's time to let the Army in with its much better (read: heavier) tanks, so...

Incidentally, what would be the best equivalent of a tank in the Star Trek environment? Would there be any benefit to, say, a vehicle that is incapable of flight or spaceflight? In the "taking the beach" phase, or in the "beach taken, bring in the actual tanks" phase? And what dramatic aspects should be considered here?

Timo Saloniemi
Actually the USMC started reequiping with M1s during the first Gulf War when reserve battalions used them in combat. What an Army company sized combat team has in its favor over a Marine infantry copany with an attached tank platoon is that they operate in a larger task force with equally mobile support forces able to keep up with the M1s.
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Old December 17 2012, 12:43 AM   #200
StarTrekMan
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Hi eveyone, I'm new! Admittedly I haven't read past the fourth page on this, and there's a lot of comments! But a lot of them seem beside the point. PLEASE forgive me if I'm rehashing something. I'll read the rest as I have time. There are established ground forces personnel in Star Trek - period. It's canon. "Colonel" west is evidence (note the ground forces rank title for those who have strongly argued against it), along with "the soldier" that Dr. Bashir had a run in with in the DS9 episode. So it doesn't matter whether someone agrees or disagrees, or "likes" or "dislikes" it. The only question is, what are they called? It appears nothing has established that. MACOs are an Earth term since they were established before the United Federation charter, but were they incorporated into the United Starfleet? I agree that because of Roddenberry's initial thought to make Starfleet ranks appear familiar, that he would probably have done the same with the Army/Marine ranks too -- MACOs follow that (with PVTs, SGTs, Majors), so it should follow that Marines would do the same, though the actual name of the branch of the Federation doesn't seem to have been established.
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Old December 17 2012, 02:39 AM   #201
T'Girl
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

In addition to any energy shields protecting a ground vehicle, having at least some "armor" would make sense. The Federation's shields are neither perfect, nor impenetrable. Having a physical barrier against hand weapons, radiation, flying debris, and simply the local environment, again makes sense. The ability to switch off the shields and still enjoy a degree of protection could make the vehicle more stealthy.

A 24th century Marine "tank" might have a main weapon powered not by a power pack, but a on board reactor. And carry sensors more capable than a hand held tricorder.

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Old December 17 2012, 06:50 AM   #202
Sci
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Merry Christmas wrote: View Post
Sci wrote: View Post
Then you brought it up for no reason ...
I disagree and maintain my original assertion, if the species who formed the Federation wished to include in it's charter guarantees on civil rights, they could.
1. That's not the function of an alliance's charter; it's a silly idea. No alliance would do that, because it would infringe on the sovereignty of its members.

2. That's not part of the charter, canonically. It's part of the Constitution. Alliances don't have constitutions -- let alone constitutions that guarantee civil rights.

That the Federation is a not-sovereign-state that just so happens to possess all of the traits that define sovereign states
The Federation also has a Membership that engaging in separate foreign policy,
"Separate" foreign policy? We don't know this.

The Province of Quebec has representative offices in foreign countries, but that doesn't mean it has a "separate" foreign policy than Canada.

The Federation has all of the traits of a sovereign state, and it is absurd to pretend it is a mere alliance.
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Old December 17 2012, 10:34 AM   #203
Timo
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

"Separate" foreign policy? We don't know this.
What do we make of the two somewhat different tacks taken by the UFP at large and by the member culture Vulcan towards the Romulan Star Empire? Is it actually standard for members to hold ancient "foreign policy" grudges, regardless of whether they are external to the UFP like here, or internal like between Andorians and Tellarites? Is that what the business with Bolians and their enemies in "Allegiance" was all about (or is that just proof that Bolians aren't members)?

It might be for these very practices that the UFP considers it a very poor idea to give any of its members actual member-specific armed forces!

Timo Saloniemi
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Old December 17 2012, 11:14 AM   #204
Longinus
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Eu had tried to ratify a constitution couple of times. Sure, it didn't happen, but it was considered to be a plausible idea, and will probalby happen one day. This still would not make EU a sovereign state (at least if the constitution was along the lines of those previously proposed.)
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Old December 17 2012, 01:13 PM   #205
T'Girl
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Timo wrote: View Post
Is that what the business with Bolians and their enemies in "Allegiance" was all about
I weigh in on the "Bolians are Members" side of the debate, but will admit it's not clearly stated. In the case of the Bolians and their enemies, it could have been a relatively minor military matter (like a border dispute), and the Bolians choice to not bring in the rest of the Federation.

Always leave room for your enemy, to become you friend. Not bringing in the vast and powerful alliance, when some saber rattling and a few skirmishes could do the job, would paint the Bolians as statesmen and maybe gamblers too.

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Old December 17 2012, 02:51 PM   #206
The Wormhole
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Again with the Bolians? The next Trek series should damn well state in dialogue that the Bolians are members of the Federation, with a computer graphic saying when they became members, and a flashback scene showing when they signed the papers of membership, just to end this silly argument.
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Old December 17 2012, 10:16 PM   #207
Longinus
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Bolians are one of the most often seen alien races in Starfleet. They obviously are members.
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Old December 17 2012, 11:03 PM   #208
Pavonis
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

I don't know about that. The Bolians could be the Canadians to the UFP's Americans. Just because they're everywhere doesn't mean they'd have to be members.
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Old December 17 2012, 11:44 PM   #209
Mr. Laser Beam
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

^ I think that's reaching, just a bit.
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Old December 18 2012, 12:44 AM   #210
Pavonis
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Re: Starfleet Marine Corps

Maybe, but then, how many Bajorans did we see in Starfleet? They definitely weren't Federation members. So why would the Bolians necessarily be?
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