I think another thing I liked about the A Time to... series, and I'm not sure how common this may be, was the fact that it showed that the Federation wasn't exactly the benevolent, friendly entity it seems to be. I liked the Iraq-Tezwa parallels, something that both surprised and sobered me at the same time. I enjoyed the analysis of Zife and Azernal's thinking, and was able to easily substitute the names and places with others to get surprisingly realistic situations and circumstances. It made, for me, the reading more interesting because it showed the Federation leadership engaged in realpolitik and doing what at that time seemed necessary and helpful. Overall, an excellent read.