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Deep Space Nine What We Left Behind, we will always have here.

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Old January 22 2014, 03:28 AM   #1
RCAM
Lieutenant Commander
 
Section 31 plot hole?

I've always loved Deep Space Nine, but have never really discussed the show with other fans, so forgive me if this is something that's been covered...

I'm not the type of person who scours Trek for inconsistencies. I'm very much willing to suspend disbelief and go with the flow. But recently, when I re-watched the show start-to-finish, I discovered what I thought was a massive plot hole. I wanted to see if other people noticed the same thing or if I'm just missing something.

In the episode where Bashir accepts Sloan's assignment and attempts to foil the Romulan assassination plot, Bashir discovers that Admiral Ross is working with Section 31. There's a great scene at the end where the two go "off the record" and have a debate about ethics.

In the 7th season, Julian and Miles are desperate to find a line to Section 31 to obtain a cure for Odo's disease. Hmm... how about you start with Admiral Ross... you know, the guy hanging around the station all the time? Why did it not occur to them (or Sisko) to leverage Ross to get what they needed?

It's bizarre to me that after the revelation that Ross is in league with Section 31, the entire crew of DS9 acts like nothing happened. In the finale, when Ross brings them the new Defiant, Bashir's just chilling on the bridge like it's all good.

Am I missing something, or is this a huge plot hole?
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Old January 22 2014, 04:20 AM   #2
JirinPanthosa
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

If I recall the sequence of events they learned section 31 was behind the disease after that episode. And Ross wouldn't have been helpful. He wasn't a core operative, he was just an asset on that mission. Organizations like section 31 are great at limiting exposure to information.

Section 31 wouldn't have intervened if they tried to leverage Ross, and Ross had enough Starfleet support that they couldn't have held him without becoming traitors.
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Old January 22 2014, 04:29 AM   #3
Tosk
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

Ross was not a Section 31 agent. He was complicite during that mission, but I don't recall him ever actually being said to be in Section 31. So there would be nothing to "get".
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Old January 22 2014, 04:35 AM   #4
RCAM
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
If I recall the sequence of events they learned section 31 was behind the disease after that episode. And Ross wouldn't have been helpful. He wasn't a core operative, he was just an asset on that mission. Organizations like section 31 are great at limiting exposure to information.

Section 31 wouldn't have intervened if they tried to leverage Ross, and Ross had enough Starfleet support that they couldn't have held him without becoming traitors.
I can buy your explanation about why they wouldn't have gone through with it, but you'd think it would at least come up in conversation.

In general, I do find it hard to believe that everyone's still comfortable around him after that whole debacle. Sisko and Bashir are not the type of characters who would just let go something as egregious as participating in the Section 31 assassination plot.
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Old January 22 2014, 04:36 AM   #5
RCAM
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

Tosk wrote: View Post
Ross was not a Section 31 agent. He was complicite during that mission, but I don't recall him ever actually being said to be in Section 31. So there would be nothing to "get".
The fact that he was complicit in this plot, and therefore worked directly with Sloan and whoever else, would still be a "link" that you'd think Bashir and O'Brien would at least discuss.

But, as with the other post, I can buy why it wouldn't be an avenue they'd pursue to help Odo.
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Old January 22 2014, 05:02 AM   #6
JD5000
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

If Ross was with Section 31, he would have been the worst agent ever if you figured it out.
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Old January 22 2014, 10:18 PM   #7
Seven of Five
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

RCAM wrote: View Post
Tosk wrote: View Post
Ross was not a Section 31 agent. He was complicite during that mission, but I don't recall him ever actually being said to be in Section 31. So there would be nothing to "get".
The fact that he was complicit in this plot, and therefore worked directly with Sloan and whoever else, would still be a "link" that you'd think Bashir and O'Brien would at least discuss.
I can understand you might think it would warrant a mention by Bashir or O'Brien, but being as the admiral wasn't an operative himself, I'd say it's 50/50 whether it is actually worth mentioning in an episode.

Besides, this is one of the smallest problems you've touched on. I'm a big fan of Section 31, so pretty much the entirety of Extreme Measures is a waste. What a soft episode to end that plotline with.
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Old January 22 2014, 10:31 PM   #8
Marc Voorhees
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

The Admiral Ross connection was tenuous at best. No real need to bring it up. The more interesting point mentioned dealt with the continuing interaction with Ross and the main characters. Sisko probably didn't change much because he perhaps saw the larger picture and he himself had done several things he wasn't proud of to help the war effort (In the pale moonlight anyone?).

As for Bashir, he was a Lt. stationed at a random post. I can't imaging he had much direct interaction with Ross to begin with and I can't imagine after this episode they really crossed paths.
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Old January 22 2014, 10:33 PM   #9
T'Girl
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

Less Ross working for, and more working with. Perhaps a exchange of favors, payback for something S31 did in the past for Starfleet.



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Old January 23 2014, 06:45 PM   #10
DarthPipes
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

RCAM wrote: View Post
JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
If I recall the sequence of events they learned section 31 was behind the disease after that episode. And Ross wouldn't have been helpful. He wasn't a core operative, he was just an asset on that mission. Organizations like section 31 are great at limiting exposure to information.

Section 31 wouldn't have intervened if they tried to leverage Ross, and Ross had enough Starfleet support that they couldn't have held him without becoming traitors.
I can buy your explanation about why they wouldn't have gone through with it, but you'd think it would at least come up in conversation.

In general, I do find it hard to believe that everyone's still comfortable around him after that whole debacle. Sisko and Bashir are not the type of characters who would just let go something as egregious as participating in the Section 31 assassination plot.
But Sisko was a guy who masterminded a plot to manipulate the Romulans into the Dominion War based on manufactured intelligence.
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Old January 23 2014, 07:07 PM   #11
T'Girl
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

RCAM wrote: View Post
Sisko and Bashir are not the type of characters who would just let go something as egregious as participating in the Section 31 assassination plot.
How is that so much different than shooting up multiple starships full of Jemhadar, who are essentually slaves?

Assassinations are at least focused. And the S31 plan to infect the founders was against the people in control, and not against slaves who had no say in their societies decision making.


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Old January 26 2014, 11:00 PM   #12
RCAM
Lieutenant Commander
 
Re: Section 31 plot hole?

Marc Voorhees wrote: View Post
The Admiral Ross connection was tenuous at best. No real need to bring it up. The more interesting point mentioned dealt with the continuing interaction with Ross and the main characters. Sisko probably didn't change much because he perhaps saw the larger picture and he himself had done several things he wasn't proud of to help the war effort (In the pale moonlight anyone?).

As for Bashir, he was a Lt. stationed at a random post. I can't imaging he had much direct interaction with Ross to begin with and I can't imagine after this episode they really crossed paths.
They did cross paths, though. At least one time sticks out: Ross brings the San Paolo and they have the "ceremony" on the bridge where he transfers command codes to Sisko. Bashir's just standing there grinning like it's all good.

These are very minor complaints, but I figured it was worth discussion.
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Old January 26 2014, 11:02 PM   #13
RCAM
Lieutenant Commander
 
Re: Section 31 plot hole?

DarthPipes wrote: View Post
RCAM wrote: View Post
JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
If I recall the sequence of events they learned section 31 was behind the disease after that episode. And Ross wouldn't have been helpful. He wasn't a core operative, he was just an asset on that mission. Organizations like section 31 are great at limiting exposure to information.

Section 31 wouldn't have intervened if they tried to leverage Ross, and Ross had enough Starfleet support that they couldn't have held him without becoming traitors.
I can buy your explanation about why they wouldn't have gone through with it, but you'd think it would at least come up in conversation.

In general, I do find it hard to believe that everyone's still comfortable around him after that whole debacle. Sisko and Bashir are not the type of characters who would just let go something as egregious as participating in the Section 31 assassination plot.
But Sisko was a guy who masterminded a plot to manipulate the Romulans into the Dominion War based on manufactured intelligence.
That's true, but I think it's more a matter of him being a hypocrite than his character changing to someone who understands and is okay with 31's antics.
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Old January 26 2014, 11:06 PM   #14
RCAM
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

T'Girl wrote: View Post
How is that so much different than shooting up multiple starships full of Jemhadar, who are essentually slaves?
That's war. You'll remember that when Bashir dealt with the Jem'Hadar in non-war situations (trying to cure their addiction to Ketracel White, taking care of the baby on the station), his desire to help all life forms shone through.

Assassinations are at least focused. And the S31 plan to infect the founders was against the people in control, and not against slaves who had no say in their societies decision making.
So, you're saying it's bad to ever kill Jem'Hadar but genocide's all good?
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Old January 27 2014, 03:34 AM   #15
T'Girl
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Re: Section 31 plot hole?

RCAM wrote: View Post
T'Girl wrote: View Post
And the S31 plan to infect the founders was against the people in control, and not against slaves who had no say in their societies decision making.
So, you're saying it's bad to ever kill Jem'Hadar but genocide's all good?
I'm saying it's a case of "people who live in glass houses," to describe Sisko and Bashir as the type of people who would frown on Ross "participating in the Section 31 assassination plot."

And as far as genocide, it ultimately wasn't. If the sole intent of S31 was genocide, S31 would never have created the sickness and the cure side by side. The sickness was an effort to manipulate the Founders, and it worked quite well.

If the Founders hadn't caved in and ended hostilities would S31 have let the sickness run it's course? Likely yes.

But as you pointed out, "that's war."

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