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

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Old January 17 2008, 04:01 PM   #1
All Seeing Eye
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Breen Attack on Earth

The Breen apparently attack Earth and cause damage to Starfleet command but are destroyed by Federation ships. Now obviously they didnt use the energy dampening weapon because otherwise the Alliance would have been aware of the weapon but this begs the question why didnt they use it?
The majority of the Federations fleets were near the front lines and the Federation had no idea that the Breen were about to strike with a sneak attack so why didnt the Breen blast the Federation fleet at Earth and cripple them all and basically launch a full scale attack on Earth, take out Earth and Starfleet command and as has always been said you cripple the Federation.
It makes no sense why the Breen didnt just outright annihilate Earth there and then. Taking out Earth would alone be the largest turning point in the war and would mean complete defeat of the Alliance by the Dominion.

Yet another boo boo by the writers. The Breen should never have been said to have attacked Earth.
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Old January 17 2008, 04:12 PM   #2
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

The Breen attack was meant as a suicide run against Starfleet, to just scare the hell out of 'em and demoralize the enemy just as they (the Breen) join the enemy, the Dominion.

It would have to have been a small group of ships, to keep a low profile and get to Earth without bein' detected before it was too late.

Basically, it wasn't meant to be a big attack, just an unexpected one.
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Old January 17 2008, 04:27 PM   #3
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

Besides, even if they did commit a large fleet with energy-dampening weapons, who is going to keep the massed Allied fleets in other parts of the quadrant busy? I get the impression that the Dominion eagerly used the Breen for just that; to maintain their strongholds and hold the lines. A large Breen fleet may have taken out Earth, but the Dominion would've been unable to hold the line against the Allies.
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Old January 17 2008, 04:36 PM   #4
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

Mark de Vries said:
A large Breen fleet may have taken out Earth, but the Dominion would've been unable to hold the line against the Allies.
Why not? the Federation fleets would be struggling to form a new chain of command without Starfleet orders and the Alliance would be fighting a war on two fronts, the Dominion would attack on the Cardassian end of Federation Space and the Breen would launch attacks on the Earth end of Federation space, plus the Alliance would have absolutely no way of defending against the energy dampening weapon since it was a fluke that that Klingon BOP was able to defend against it and it still took the Federation and Romulans a long time to copy the Klingon BOPs ability.

On another point even without taking out Earth when the Breen crippled the Alliance fleet in the second battle of Chintoka they shouldn't have stopped there, they should have immediately pushed forward and systematically crippled all remaining fleets.
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Old January 17 2008, 04:40 PM   #5
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

The attack on Earth was just a suicide mission. The Breen could not hold Earth. It was just to place fear in the minds of the people.

Second, nobody is sure about the development of the Breen weapon. Maybe they had to test the starfleet ships and others to make sure what they were going to fight. If you are not sure the weapon is going to work, do not test it on the battlefield
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Old January 17 2008, 05:18 PM   #6
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

^^ Agree.

It would have been incredibly naive to formulate a pivotal stratagem around the assumption of the Breen weapons' success. It's likely that they didn't know the full extent of its capabilities against Federation ships.

For example, what would have happened had they launched such a pivotal attack and committed resources, and the Breen weapon had as much effect on the Federation ships as it ended up having against the Klingons?

They would likely have suffered devastating losses, which would have set the Dominion back even further and would certainly have negated the impact of the Breen entering the war.
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Old January 17 2008, 05:22 PM   #7
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

It was probably a massive operation for the Breen and a costly one as well. Remember Damar's line "it's unfortunate so few of your ships survived the assault".

The Breen attack on Earth really moved me when I first saw the episode, just a few weeks after 9/11, on the BBC.
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Old January 17 2008, 05:26 PM   #8
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

The Breen apparently attack Earth and cause damage to Starfleet command but are destroyed by Federation ships.
...Or other Federation assets, such as a planetary defense system similar to the Cardassian ones.

Now obviously they didnt use the energy dampening weapon because otherwise the Alliance would have been aware of the weapon but this begs the question why didnt they use it?
The weapon could have been in use but not recognized, as all the witnesses were killed. That's how you generally want to use your superweapons: in a manner that doesn't leave the enemy a chance to study their weaknesses. (Also note that the weapon by its very nature would have removed the witness statements of electronic recording devices, too.)

The majority of the Federations fleets were near the front lines and the Federation had no idea that the Breen were about to strike with a sneak attack
Not so. When summoning forces for the retaking of DS9, Sisko was denied the 3rd Fleet which was dedicated to defending Earth.

Cloaking devices, immense distances, and the less than perfect sensor systems of the Alpha players would mean that there could be no "front lines" in the conventional sense in this battle. It would be much like old-style naval warfare. No idea where the enemy might be, but a pretty good idea where he would want to be: near your precious ports! Hence, there'd have to be an Earth defense, which in fact we did hear had resisted the Breen and destroyed most of them.

so why didnt the Breen blast the Federation fleet at Earth and cripple them all and basically launch a full scale attack on Earth, take out Earth and Starfleet command and as has always been said you cripple the Federation.
That's the mystery part. Clearly the Breen wanted to strike fear at their enemy, using just minor resources to create a disproportionately large reaction - the analogy to the Doolittle Raid is obvious. But even those "minor resources" could in theory completely sterilize a planet if let to operate freely.

Se we probably have to assume that the Breen were not let to operate freely. Whatever weapons of mass destruction they fired at Earth, those were intercepted by the defenses. Remember that we have never quite seen how planetary defenses repel genocidal bombardment - but we have seen that such defenses are absolutely deadly against fleets of hundreds of starships. The Breen might not have wanted to push their luck, and would have sent only a token force on, as Ezri says, a suicide mission.

It makes no sense why the Breen didnt just outright annihilate Earth there and then. Taking out Earth would alone be the largest turning point in the war and would mean complete defeat of the Alliance by the Dominion.
So our heroes claim every now and then. I can't see that happening, though. Why would the loss of a single planet mean that much? Klingons and Romulans would not be affected; humans would have dozens if not hundreds or even thousands colonies with the capability to keep up the fight; and other Federation homeworlds would remain untouched.

Russia has never been defeated by merely conquering Moscow, its capital/most important city, either... Even though Moscow has been conquered or besieged by its enemies often enough.

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Old January 17 2008, 05:39 PM   #9
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

Fan Fiction : A Death In The Family is based on what little info I could glean from Memory Alpha and opens with a brief overview/description of the Breen attack. Its just my take but I think its a plausible scenario.
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Old January 17 2008, 06:06 PM   #10
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

Even the Klingons never attacked Earth ... so the attack on Earth by the Breen was important. If you can attack Earth you can attack any place.
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Old January 17 2008, 07:01 PM   #11
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

^^ Earth is effectively the Federation capital, and arguably the most prominent Federation member. Striking at Earth is effectively striking at the heart of the Federation and proving that nowhere is safe.

That was the point of the attack, and it pretty much proved the point.
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Old January 18 2008, 12:52 AM   #12
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

That is true Angel

Still, willing to lose a fleet to attack the center is not a wise military command
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Old January 18 2008, 04:19 AM   #13
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

My thought was that they wouldn't have used the energy dampening weapon for the reason that they were then able to almost completely wipe out an unsuspecting, massed fleet, soon after the attack on Earth. The only reason anyone survived is that some were left to tell the tale and dispirit the Federation. Two severe blows to the Federation and its allies one after another.

I have to agree that the simplest answer is the correct one. It isn't a weapon to fend off an enemy, but to anihiliate one.
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Old January 18 2008, 05:19 AM   #14
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

I still think that there is some unspoken rule between the powers (even in the Dominion's attack against Earth) that total annihilation of inhabited worlds isn't an option, otherwise you'd just have fleets traveling from world to world destroying populations at a time. Why spare the population of Betazed from orbital bombardment and annihilation when it only takes a small fleet of ships to make a world completely uninhabitable unless there was the fear that the enemy would do the same thing to you if they got the chance?
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Old January 18 2008, 05:55 AM   #15
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Re: Breen Attack on Earth

od0_ital said:
The Breen attack was meant as a suicide run against Starfleet, to just scare the hell out of 'em and demoralize the enemy just as they (the Breen) join the enemy, the Dominion.

It would have to have been a small group of ships, to keep a low profile and get to Earth without bein' detected before it was too late.

Basically, it wasn't meant to be a big attack, just an unexpected one.
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