Section 31 plot hole?

Discussion in 'Deep Space Nine' started by RCAM, Jan 22, 2014.

  1. RCAM

    RCAM Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2013
    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?
     
  2. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    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.
     
  3. Tosk

    Tosk Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2001
    Location:
    On the run.
    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".
     
  4. RCAM

    RCAM Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2013
    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.
     
  5. RCAM

    RCAM Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2013
    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.
     
  6. JD5000

    JD5000 Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2013
    Location:
    Jackson, WY
    If Ross was with Section 31, he would have been the worst agent ever if you figured it out.
     
  7. Seven of Five

    Seven of Five Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    May 1, 2001
    Location:
    Staffordshire, UK
    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. :wtf:
     
  8. Marc Voorhees

    Marc Voorhees Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    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.
     
  9. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2009
    Location:
    T'Girl
    Less Ross working for, and more working with. Perhaps a exchange of favors, payback for something S31 did in the past for Starfleet.



    :)
     
  10. DarthPipes

    DarthPipes Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2006
    But Sisko was a guy who masterminded a plot to manipulate the Romulans into the Dominion War based on manufactured intelligence.
     
  11. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2009
    Location:
    T'Girl
    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.


    :borg:
     
  12. RCAM

    RCAM Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2013
    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.
     
  13. RCAM

    RCAM Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2013
    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.
     
  14. RCAM

    RCAM Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2013
    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.

    So, you're saying it's bad to ever kill Jem'Hadar but genocide's all good?
     
  15. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2009
    Location:
    T'Girl
    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."

    :)
     
  16. Marc Voorhees

    Marc Voorhees Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Bashir was ordered/scheduled to be on duty and it was a big moment for a man he had the utmost respect for (Sisko) so you put on your diplomatic face and do what needs to be done. It isn't as if he and Ross went to the holosuite afterwards:-)

    But I do agree, it is interesting that there never seemed to be any tension at any other point of the show.
     
  17. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    There's a difference between blowing up a ship of people actively trying to murder you and trying to wipe out an entire race of people.

    Also I think there are legitimate questions about Gem'Hadar sapience. You might describe a majority of them as biological AI. One could argue free will is a prerequisite for sapience and the only sapient Gem'Hadar we ever met was the one in Hippocratic Oath.

    In any event, I strongly doubt Admiral Ross knew anything about section 31 beyond the mission he was involved in, and I strongly believe he lost all ability to contact section 31 after the mission. Bashir didn't say anything because it would have not gained him anything and would have harmed his career.
     
  18. JD5000

    JD5000 Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2013
    Location:
    Jackson, WY
    Non-canon, I know, but Ross shows this side of himself again in novels. Sort of ties up his connections to non-sanctioned but Federation-beneficial actions. I don't remember if Section 31 was involved in those actions, implied or not, though. I remember thinking that they probably were, given their nature.

    Trying to add something that gives the Ross character a little more depth without spoilers or pushing specific events that are non-canon.
     
  19. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2009
    Location:
    T'Girl
    ... and trying to wipe out an entire race of people who are actively trying to murder you.

    And your species.

    Remember if the Dominion had won the war (as a preventitive measure) there was a intent to kill all Humans, to prevent us from causes later trouble.




    (Go Seahawks)
     
  20. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    I suppose the Founders would be the exception where every single member of the race actually is guilty because of their collective decision making. There is still a difference though, because the threat is not directly imminent, and the consequences are more final.

    Also, I'm having trouble deciding whether, at the moment of Founder extinction, whether the Gem'Hadar would have all killed themselves as in The Ship, or whether they would have gone into a berserker rage that would have slaughtered trillions of GQ civilians.

    It is a much more extreme step though, one you can't take and still claim any kind of moral high ground and one that would have destroyed the values that founded the Federation forever. Something you attempt as a final desperate play, not a preventative measure. Wasn't it established that Odo was infected by this in season 4, well before the situation was desperate and when collapsing the wormhole was still a viable option? I recall the Stardate mentioned being a 49XXX.