What if Admiral Leyton's Coup Was Successful?

Discussion in 'Deep Space Nine' started by Emperor Norton, Apr 5, 2014.

  1. Emperor Norton

    Emperor Norton Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    In Deep Space Nine, Admiral Leyton, fearing war with the Dominion (which did eventually come), attempted a coup to become dictator of the Federation. He faked Dominion aggression, moved loyalists into high positions, and convinced the Federation President to declare martial law all to covertly lay the groundwork for Starfleet to take over leadership, with himself at it's head. Leyton appears as though he believed his plan to be patriotic, that in order to save the utopia of the Federation such measures were necessary, and that he was putting the needs of the many foremost. He also appears to have been Humanocentric and bigoted, in that way that people who do not see themselves as bigots make statements about the deficiencies of another group at an equal task. He also appears to believe that he's saving these things; not destroying them in the quest to preserve them.

    The coup plot was foiled. What if it had succeeded? Personally, I see a Federation Civil War.
     
  2. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It doubtful that Layton would have commanded the loyalty of the majority of Starfleet, mostly likely he would have been simply arrested in a short period of time.

    No civil war.





    :)
     
  3. Hartzilla2007

    Hartzilla2007 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah for some reason his entire strategy seemed to come down to securing the sol system and the other 149 members of the federation just submitting to his authority for pretty much no reason other than controlling Earth.
     
  4. Emperor Norton

    Emperor Norton Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I've posted this elsewhere, by the way, but the discussion hadn't gotten going as I would have hoped.

     
  5. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    It has been so long since I've seen those episodes, I had to look Leyton up. My memory mistakenly thought he was a Changeling infiltrator.
     
  6. Emperor Norton

    Emperor Norton Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Perhaps he was.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8Kyi0WNg40
     
  7. jimbotron

    jimbotron Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Even though they were only "following orders", I'm surprised Red Squad was allowed to continue existing after participating in the sabotage. Oh well, I shed no tears when those little s#!ts ate it in Valiant.
     
  8. Emperor Norton

    Emperor Norton Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I'd imagine Red Squad would become something like a Hitler Youth in a Leyton controlled Federation.
     
  9. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Section 31 would probably have taken out Leyton and any of his co-conspirators.
     
  10. Emperor Norton

    Emperor Norton Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Not necessarily. Leyton's idea was never to destroy the Federation, only to reconstitute it. A dictatorship (borderline or otherwise) that gets rid of the rabblerousers and takes out the opposition seems right up Section 31's alley. Leyton's plan is order and security, which is what Section 31 is all about.

    The biggest issue would be causing a Civil War. So it may even be an internal conflict in Section 31 of what matters more between order and security and a Civil War. Albeit there is benefit to a Civil War; it opens the door to asserting and expanding authority and clearing out anyone who may be a problem.

    EDIT: And who is to say Section 31 is involved in the plot, or at least ok with it already. Leyton got pretty far without a peep, and had a lot of intricate plots going. The only person who stopped him was Sisko and crew. So it seems that even if Section 31 wasn't part of it, they didn't have a problem with it.
     
  11. Emperor Norton

    Emperor Norton Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Another biggie: What happens with the USS Voyager?
     
  12. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    For all we know, Leyton might have been Section 31. Even if everyone involved denies it.

    And variations on the name Leyton show up throughout Trek history. One appears in TOS: The Conscious of the King, with Tom Leighton. In TNG: Identity Crisis, there's Susanna Leijten.
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2014
  13. Captain Clark Terrell

    Captain Clark Terrell Commodore Commodore

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    And what would that have accomplished besides pissing off other Federation member worlds? Leyton's plan would never have succeeded because he controlled only a small portion of the fleet--a group made up of officers loyal to him. It's highly unlikely any other Starfleet personnel would have bought into his ideas once they were presented with the evidence gathered by Sisko and Odo.

    --Sran
     
  14. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Section 31 was probably Admiral Lleyton's biggest backer to begin with.

    If his coup was successful on Earth it would have worked in the Dominion's favor in the long run. Their goal at the time was to fracture the Federation and create distrust and infighting, and it would have accomplished exactly that.
     
  15. Emperor Norton

    Emperor Norton Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Well the point is that it is successful. So how to do it. For one, it wouldn't be something so bold as "I'm dictator now", as that would alienate. It would be a slow slide with more and more power taken, until it's only noticed when it's too late, all under the cover of war powers. Leyton has his Reichstag fire in the staged Dominion aggression on Earth. He's already got martial law on Earth. He has everyone paranoid about Changelings. People are afraid and will happily trade in their liberties for security. So he'd take more authority, launch a war on the Dominion, use the war to assert more authority and create a growing dictatorial infrastructure around himself, until it's too late. By the time anyone would act, he'd already be wedged in there, with loyalists in high positions and whoever else is on his side doing it because the Federation is their country and Leyton is a war hero who saved the Federation. The opposition is where the Civil War/rebellion part would come in.

    And Sisko et al would probably be killed or something to prevent them from ever uncovering the plot, or Sisko could go along with it because what Leyton doing is in the nature of the wicked things Sisko was willing to do despite his conscience.
     
  16. Emperor Norton

    Emperor Norton Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Potentially. Although there is the flip side that this would be the Federation under the direction of a man and a psychology of being willing to do anything to save the Federation and democracy (even if democracy had to die to save democracy). Anything.

    To quote George Orwell, "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." This would be a Federation that would be willing to do any horror and violate any morality, and excuse it as being for the greater good. That is what DS9 became all about, so it's the logical conclusion of all that. That's one of my problems with Deep Space Nine as a series, because it does have this violation of morality go on and does violate the Roddenberry Utopianism, and it's more a post-modern deconstruction of Star Trek than anything else. But no matter. This is a Federation that would be, as Quark put it, desperate and would be barbarous to save itself from destruction. What it would take to defeat the Dominion is a willingness to betray your own morality and standards and to be absolutely brutal.

    So the Dominion would initially very much enjoy the Federation Civil War, and it would possibly affect their other plans like the Klingon war with Cardassia and the subsequent war with the Federation. But I would say that in the long run it would hurt the Dominion because this would be a Federation that would destroy them by any mean necessary. If the villain is evil, there will be no long Picard speech and letting them go and talking about how we must be pure; they will get shot in the face.

    EDIT:

    I'd also like to point out that the Federation would essentially become what the Cardassians became. Cardassia used to be a happy-go-lucky democracy itself, but it suffered from lack of resources and the military took over and fixed those issues.
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2014
  17. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    This idea that ruthless barbaric militarism is going to make your country more safe is a load of fascist BS. You might have a short term increase in power and influence but then you lose all your allies and hearts and minds of the people, and end up isolated in poverty or worse.

    Sisko was every bit as ruthless and barbaric as necessary to win the war. He mined the wormhole, he became accessory to murder to bring the Romulans into the war, he personally convinced Starfleet to conduct an all out assault on Cardassia at the end. He 'Violated any morality' the absolute minimum necessary. Who was the most ruthless and barbaric? Why, it was the Tal Shiar and Obsidian Order. And look what happened to them. The Dominion wanted AQ powers to make reckless offensives as soon as possible.

    Maybe Lleyton would have collapsed the entrance to the wormhole before the Dominion had a chance to reinforce it, that's the only way the coup would have actually won the war. And even if that did happen the Federation would have collapsed in on itself in the next couple decades.
     
  18. Emperor Norton

    Emperor Norton Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    It is essentially fascist. That's the point. Regardless of how you may feel about it or how I may feel about it, the narrative of DS9 is that if you're willing to do horrible things when backed up against the wall, that is how you fight your way off the wall. There was no alternative thought to killing the Romulan senator and bringing the Romulans into the war; it was just done, and Sisko was ok living with it for the greater good. So the narrative is that you are most effective as saving yourself being willing to do terrible things. And that's really the narrative of all Star Trek; things would have been so much easier for Picard on so many occasions if he had just disintegrated the villain or something like that. But species maturity and morality was always taken into account.

    And dictatorships can be efficient and very stable, if they have the infrastructure to be at the forefront. Nazi Germany is an example of that, and Star Trek has said Nazi Germany is an example of that ("Patterns of Force"). The Federation would be more Nazi Germany than North Korea. And it would probably stand in the similar way Nazi Germany did; don't worry about your liberties, and just smile and enjoy the prosperity we give you and enjoy your utopia. Leyton's Federation would be one that exchanged liberty for security, and which ruthlessly sought to keep it's paradise from floundering even slightly. And as for allies, externally there really are none. You can point that to being a criticism of the narrative the Star Trek franchise set up, and I certainly would, but there really are no allies because there are no other democracies, and every other empire is a jerk. The Klingons, Cardassians, Borg, etc all fall into that category. There are no states that are democracies as well, but just don't join the Federation because of the multiple reasons there would be not to join the UFP (reasons like why the US, Canada and Mexico are not one united nation). Internally, there certainly would be divisions, and there would be divisions within member worlds and their colonies, the leadership of those worlds, and in average individuals and groups. Therein lies the issue of a Civil War, and probable secessions and long term rebellion. As I said, though, I don't see Leyton's coup being an instant and bold announcement of dictatorship; rather, there'd be war on the Dominion, and power would be expanded during that period, and it'd only be noticed what was happening after it was too late, and probably after the war was concluded.

    Ruthless also does not entail reckless; the two can be one and the same but now always. What it means is a Federation that would not pull its punches, and would go even further. It would be a Starfleet willing to bombard civilian populations and then cover it up, willing to unleash plagues, and to torture prisoners, and anything else. It could end up a galactic Oceania in the long term.

    EDIT:
    I do see it more becoming the Federation from Starship Troopers, however.
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2014
  19. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    To be fair, it was Garak's idea to kill Vreenak. Sisko himself would never have thought of it. And after the fact, it's not like Sisko was in a position to do anything about it. There wasn't even any proof that Garak was responsible, anyway.
     
  20. Anwar

    Anwar Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Which in itself was nonsense. The Nazi system wasn't efficient or stable, it required persecution of minorities and essentially enslaving and stealing from its own citizens to keep on going. The writer of that episode didn't know what he was talking about, and neither did Gill.