Next Generation and the Dominion War

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Mr Light, Jan 1, 2014.

  1. NightJim

    NightJim Captain Captain

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    For the most part I agree with you Christopher, but I think you might be trying to argue to many points. The explanation of Picard being better suited playing diplomat and getting allies is perfect. As is that the Sovereign and Intrepid classes are relatively new so not many in service and it might have been cheaper/quicker to mass produce the older models for fleets is a perfect companion.

    The extra "so therefore Sovereign isn't a good warship" is a step too far for me. It's 1+2=4. It's jumping a step somewhere. For me, it's not the Borg that they're facing, so Picard is better served getting the Federation allies, as I've already said.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    But as I keep stressing, "starship" is not synonymous with "warship." A warship is a vessel specialized for combat above all else. The Enterprise has never, ever been portrayed in that way. Like virtually all Starfleet vessels, it is a multipurpose vessel whose primary intended missions are scientific research, humanitarian and diplomatic support, and defense of Federation worlds and colonies. There had been very little actual war during the time that Geordi La Forge had served aboard starships as an engineer. The border skirmishes with Cardassia had been resolved by the time he switched from flight control to engineering. His years of service aboard the two Enterprises did include a variety of combat scenarios, true, but we rarely saw him participating in anything that could be called a declared war.

    So it does not follow that his expertise in starship operations makes him an expert in combat operations. That is not consistent with onscreen evidence.


    I misspoke. I was responding to Mr. Light's question about whether it was the most powerful warship in the Starfleet. Obviously all Starfleet vessels are powerfully armed, indeed to the point of ridiculous excess, and have been since TOS. It's easy for a starship to be armed to the point of ridiculous excess, because the energies necessary to drive a ship at FTL speeds, or even substantial sublight speeds, would easily be capable of inflicting devastation on a planetary scale. Hell, a shuttlecraft could cause an extinction-level event by crashing into a planet surface at full impulse. So it would be absurd to argue that any Starfleet vessel is not powerful. But the specific claim on the table was that the Enterprise-E was the most powerful warship in the entire fleet, implicitly even more so than other Sovereigns. That is what we have no proof for.

    And I never meant to say that I believed the Sovvies were not powerful warships. I just meant that we have little evidence depicting them in actual combat, and thus we have too little information to draw any firm conclusions. Saying "we don't know" is not the same thing as saying "It's not true." For some reason, our culture conditions us to think we have to have a firem answer to every question, even if we have to base it on guesswork and assumptions. I think that's misguided. If we don't have hard facts, we shouldn't try to invent them. Sometimes the wisest answer you can possibly give, or at least the most honest one, is "I just don't know."


    I just hate it when people call Starfleet vessels "warships." That implies a ship that is made for the specific purpose of going to war, of waging aggression. Starfleet weapons are for defense and protection.

    Let's not forget that even the Defiant was only unofficially acknowledged as a warship; officially it was an escort vessel. Because "warship" is a label that's anathema to Starfleet's mission and values.
     
  3. Jedi_Master

    Jedi_Master Vice Admiral Admiral

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    In most wars, the percentage of soldiers who are actually out fighting on the front lines is very small. Most of the soldiers are in support, logistics, and other non-combat roles.
    Those things are just as - if not more - important than the actual fighting.
     
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Let's face it, most parts of war are more productive than the actual fighting. The fighting just does a lot of damage that makes it harder to achieve the intended goals afterward. I think we could run wars a lot more efficiently if we left out the fighting part altogether.
     
  5. Jedi_Master

    Jedi_Master Vice Admiral Admiral

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    :rommie:

    The fighting parts are just a way to show that you are serious. I would think that a massive internal "goodwill/moral" operation would have been needed in the Dominion War. That would have been a perfect job for the Enterprise.
     
  6. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    Make that a little shorter and pithier, and it would make a very fine Rule of Acquisition.
     
  7. Hartzilla2007

    Hartzilla2007 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Plus failing all of that Riker flat out said Picard should have been leading the fight against the Borg, and I would think he would be an authority in authority in military strategy what with being the first officer and close to being an actually captain.

    Not to mention Starfleet's only reason for keeping the Enterprise out of the fight was because they thought Picard wasn't over his Borg issues.

    Plus you can't really say the Enterprise wouldn't be a formidable combatant since it was holding its own against a heavily armed Romulan/Reman dreadnought.
     
  8. Relayer1

    Relayer1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    In WWII the relatively few large modern German capital ships were largely held out of the conflict, being more useful as a potential threat. They tied up large numbers of allied ships that way, whereas if they were engaged they risked destruction or being pinned down in port.

    The majority of engagements were fought with the smaller and more numerous assets, usually U-Boats.
     
  9. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Seriously? Riker said that because Picard had been one of the Borg. He literally knew how they think, had firsthand insights into them that nobody else in Starfleet had (since Seven of Nine was still in the Delta Quadrant at the time). That's got nothing to do with whether Picard is more accomplished as a warrior or a diplomat. Of course he's a diplomat first. How can there be any doubt of that? Whatever military accomplishments he undoubtedly has, he's far more valuable doing what he does best, which is diplomacy.


    One more time: The only thing I'm questioning is the assertion that it's the most powerful warship. Not about whether it's powerful at all -- as I've made quite clear, it's a given that every Starfleet vessel is absurdly overloaded with destructive potential, because you can't have warp drive without having absurd destructive potential. But that's the whole point. Many Starfleet vessels are powerful in combat, even though virtually no Starfleet vessels are designed with that as their primary function. It goes without saying that the E-E is powerful, but that's because it goes without saying that all Starfleet vessels are powerful. So what makes the E-E the single most powerful one of all, even more so than other Sovereign-class ships? Where did that assertion even come from? What is the basis for that belief? That's what I'm asking.
     
  10. Jedi_Master

    Jedi_Master Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Just a real world check - in here -- the Dominion War was a DS9 TV thing, so the TNG people weren't in the picture because Paramount wasn't paying those actors anymore.
    As for the novels, the narrative focus of the entire 24th century era stories had moved ON from the Dominion war, so when the novels took over the lion's share of the storytelling, well the time had come to tell NEW stories, not recap past events that were covered fairly well in the Ds9 canonical series.

    Edit:

    As for the most powerful warship stuff, just because a starship has a gajillion weapons does not mean it is the KEY to winning. War on a galactic scale would necessitate the use of thousands of ships, and tens, if not hundreds of millions of beings, with an untold number of weapons, and an unprecedented expenditure of energy. One ship is kinda small in that equation even if it is the USS - Chuck Norris.
     
  11. Corran Horn

    Corran Horn Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The goalposts have indeed been moved.
     
  12. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    ^I already conceded that I misspoke in the second quote. Go back to where this all started and you'll see I was responding specifically to a question about whether the E-E was the most powerful warship in the fleet. In a later post, I phrased my comments badly, and when that was pointed out to me, I corrected my mistake. So yeah, I accidentally moved a goalpost, and then moved it back once I realized my error. I'm only human.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2014
  13. JarodRussell

    JarodRussell Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Reading this statement, I'm going like “What?! The fuck?!“
    I'd even like to respond to it properly, but it just baffles me to the point of speechlessness.