Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by Robert DeSoto, Jun 11, 2011.
Oakland Raiders fans?
Hey, DeSoto, I'm fraking here too. Try not to let the walls of your little internet world hit you as they come crashing down. Also, learn to read, and take a few debate classes at your local high school, since it seems you never finished with it.
K THX BYE!
I wouldn't call it a war. With the exception of what Geordi made, the Federation doesn't appear to take any offensive moves against the Borg. They are all defensive.
Double post. Sorry.
To put those accusations against Memory Alpha into some sort of perspective - this is not really about some innocent user vs. a power-hungry administrator who just luvs to bully people.
What that debate started out as was a simple suggestion to merge two of our articles into one: the articles Federation-Borg War and Human-Borg history. I think it's pretty plain to see the major overlap in article focus here. While several users agreed with this suggested action, RdS did not and caused some ruckus on the discussion page. It was at this time that, additionally, the difference between minor-case "war" (as in "the two guys were having a war in the forum") and major-case "War" (as part of a proper name as in "the American War of Independence") was brought up, but apparently never understood by one of the discussion participants.
Long story short - the articles were eventually merged with majority consensus, which made the disagreeing user go ballistic. Since he has now admitted, here, that "debating shit" is more important to him than any eventual article content, we will have an eye on him in the future.
The ranting about the off-board issues is completely off-topic.
If the person in question wasn't a member here (or had only reg'ed here to carry on the conflict), I'd probably leave things with a stern instruction not to drag off-board vendettas onto TBBS as it's basically empty spam with no relevance here.
But since the other party is a member here (with membership pre-dating your post above although he hasn't posted before), I'm going to count this as trolling rather than spamming, and warn for such.
I strongly suggest not rising to the bait in future, and letting the mod notification system deal with this sort of issue. Warning for trolling him back.
Everyone: knock the personal crap off, and keep things on-topic.
When I started reading this thread this line kept coming to me.
The Borg are a force of nature, with a Queen who - IMO - is the personification of the Collective. You can't declare war against something that is doing the only thing it knows to do in order to survive
So you're saying the Borg are like my hemorrhoids?
I agree with BillJ, a "cold war" would be the most suitable term. The federation was never at a continual state of war with the Borg. Borg incursions were few and far between and usually resulted in one ship being dispatched to one area. Lets look at the Borg incursions
FC 2063: Borg travels back in time and fires up Bozeman, Montana. The Borg ship is swiftly destroyed and the Ent-E crew later succeed in preventing the Borg from damaging history and assimilating Earth.
Regeneration 2150's: Borg left over from the "first contact" incident awaken and acquire a ship, along with some new additions to their collective. They send a message to Borg space (which may or may not have reached them) and are promptly destroyed by the Enterprise.
TBOBW 2360's: The Borg send a ship to the Alpha Quadrant, destroy several outposts and assimilate Picard. They then destroy an entire armada of starfleet ships before being stopped just as they reach Earth
FC 2370's: Borg sends a ship to Earth, a fleet of ships along with the Ent-E destroy the Cube and the Ent-E follows the Sphere through a temporal rift to stop it.
Those are the only instances of direct assaults on starfleet and its territories. War isn't really a suitable word to use in this context. We can gather that the Borg were intrigued with the Alpha Quadrant and would plan methods to conquer it, but it never seemed as if it was a priority for them (otherwise they would have sent entire fleets of Cubes). In the federation's case, it was planning for a potential war with the Borg, but due to the threats from the Dominion, these plans were quickly put on hold.
Assimilation or annihilation is the declaration of the Borg, which equates to being slavery or death. By that definition the Federation's stand point is that a state of war exists, and will always exist, so long as that is the Borg goal.
Declarations have been made to support that position. Whether the Borg understood them as such, or recognize their own actions as hostile is well... irrelevant.
Both sides understand that the Federation will not willingly comply with Borg demands, and that violent offensive and defensive tactics will be employed against one another, in order to prevent the opposing combatant from achieving their goals. That folks, is war, even if it goes cold once in a while
The problem is that the Federation or at least some in it, are rather unwilling to do what's necessary to win a war like that. Unlike all other wars they have fought, there is only one tactic that can be foremost.
Destroy them, before they can destroy you, unless Guinan's got some brilliant plan to strike up an accord with them, like she postulated might someday be possible, when her & Picard spoke at the end of Q-Who
Otherwise, you do everything you can to destroy as many of them that is necessary to change their goal, and in this case, that may be all of them
There are several overlapping issues that have been touched upon in this thread. It's like trying to unravel a ball of yarn. Careful! You'll wind up like a kitty getting rolled into it.
Tracing back how the Borg were originally defined to us:
Guinan told Picard that the Borg were a conglomeration "of biological and artificial life that has been evolving for thousands of centuries". How Guinan came to know this is unclear, but if we are to accept this basic premise as the foundation, something does become clear: the Borg have existed the same Galaxy as Earth and the Federation for at least a quarter-million years and possibly longer. Guinan also told Picard that the Borg "swarmed through our system" and destroyed the civilization on her homeworld.
After Q's encounter at J-25 had been broken off, Guinan also told Picard that Q introduced the Borg to the Federation at a time long before the Federation was ready, and "for now, for right now, you're just raw material to them", but she also said that the Federation could establish a relationship with the Borg once they were prepared.
Consider a comparison between Gomtuu (TNG's "Tin Man") and the Borg. Both a Borg collective and the Gomtuu space vessel appear to be some form of "living" space vessels. Both are capable of hostile acts that a Federation starship captain cannot reliably anticipate, diffuse or defend against. (Witness what happened to the Romulans.)
Of course, the Borg are "bad guys". They are mean as mean can be. But also consider this: another important difference is that Gomtuu, to our knowledge, had no history of aggressive violence. Sure, it could be provoked into destroying a Romulan Warbird or crippling the Enterprise-D. And Gomtuu's moves were obviously not logical to Picard. The Federation could easily regard Gomtuu as a threat. Would Starfleet put an all-points bulletin out for starships to avoid, or even to take defensive action regarding Gomtuu? Not likely. Gomtuu would be seen as a potential threat, but also as a first-contact mission. Starfleet would want to assume a risk.
Same with Species "8472". These aliens might seem like a super-threat even worse than the Borg, since a fleet of their bio-ships is capable of Death Starring a whole planet. And, like the Borg, 8472's actions are clearly trending to the aggressive end of the scale. Does the Federation regard them as a threat? Sure. But they are not a direct one.
But the Borg have attacked Federation starships and allied colonies and installations. They tried to invade Earth twice, and have assimilated Federation citizens (presumably by the thousands, perhaps more). Surely, the Borg deserve an even stronger response, do they not?
Indeed they do, but consider this as well: the Borg have been in existence for at least a quarter, maybe a half-million years or more. If they had been so aggressive from their very beginning, openly marauding the Galaxy for all those "thousands of centuries", then it's safe to assume that there would not be anything left for the Federation to explore.
Clearly there is a Galaxy to explore, and therein lies an undefined issue with the Borg. Have they always been so violent? If they had, then the Galaxy would already be overwhelmed by them. Clearly, there are unknown aspects to Borg behavior. Do they go through periods of violent aggression for some unknown reason, only to stop at times and become peaceful? Or were the Borg once peaceful/docile, and something happened to change them? Guinan seemed to think that the Federation and the Borg would eventually have a peaceful relationship. Could it be that the Borg have encountered other distant powers who have/had a relationship with the collective, and causing the collective to set aside their violent behavior? Or did the Borg only acquire sufficient technology to travel through deep space only recently, with nearly all of their long history being confined to a single planet or sector of isolated space?
Looking at the Borg from this perspective probably gave the Federation leadership reason to pursue a more cautious path. The Borg are not a conventional military threat. Therefore, they defy conventional military and diplomatic thinking. As Q pointed out "you can't destroy them." And even if you could infect thousands of their ships with a computer virus, you can never be certain that the virus reached all of them (some may be out of range) or that the Borg will find some way to adapt. (Surely their collective cyber-consciousness network has built-in security countermeasures.)
So maybe the notion of "let's declare war on the Borg" would be seen in the same light as "let's declare war on Species 8472", or "let's declare war on Gomtuu". Such a move would be seen as Quixotic and even counter-productive.
The bottom line is this: it's never wise to declare war on an adversary unless you have a clear strategy that leads to victory, and you're willing to deal with the aftermath. Just ask Hitler and Tojo how that works out.
There's also the old saying "Your enemies of today will be your friends of tomorrow", in other words, before you go getting into a fight with that guy at the corner bar and you decide you're going to go all-out and break his arm to teach him a lesson, you might want to consider the consequences of all-out warfare. Maybe it's best not to break the guy's arm. If you avoid him, he won't be likely to try to smack a pool cue over your head.
I think this debate is a little too focused on semantics. Is it possible for the Federation to technically be at war with a "race" that has no government? If they are at war, is it a cold war or a normal war? Interesting questions, but ultimately irrelevant. War is a term used to describe a military force fighting another military force. The Borg are a force of billions (maybe trillions?) with the objective of genocide against the Federation. The Borg have a military. The Borg and Federation have had military conflicts. For all intents and purposes the Federation is at war with the Borg.
Is the Federation still at war with the Borg? Yes. Wars can't expire and aren't dependent on casualties. There was the Three Hundred and Thirty Five Years' War between the Netherlands and the Isles of Scilly without a single shot fired. Not to mention the Korean War which is currently at 60 years and counting.
I doubt that either side cared much about formal declarations of war here. To paraphrase the Borg: "Declarations of war are irrelevant. You will be assimilated." And when your opponent doesn't care why should the Federation council?
I would also like to point out that formal states of war (and/or declarations of war) have been increasingly become irrelevant in the real world since World War II. For instance, the period between 1941 and 1945 was the last time the United States had been officially at war. Korea, Vietnam, Iraq (both times), and Afghanistan were merely prolonged cases of "military action" without actually declaring war on anyone. On the other hand, North Korea and South Korea have been in a continuous state of war since 1950, with a mere cease-fire being in place for most of the time between 1953 and 2011.
The bottomline is, whenever the Federation encountered a Borg ship, they tried to open fire on it (and the other way around). At the very least, I'd call that a de facto state of war. The only limiting factor is that the core territories of both opponents were separated by 50,000 light-years or so. As result, fights occured only sproadically with very long break between individual battles.
Congressional authorizations for military action in Iraq (first gulf war) was Joint Resolution to authorize the use of United States Armed Forces pursuant to United Nations Security Council Resolution 678 on January 14, 1991, "Operation Desert Storm."
Congressional authorizations for military action in Afghanistan was House Joint Resolution 64 and Senate Joint Resolution 23, Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorists, Public Law 107-40, voted in by the US Congress on September 14, 2001.
Congressional authorizations for military action in Iraq (second gulf war) was on October 16, 2002, Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The Constitution gives Congress the power to authorized war, but doesn't require specific language. The words "declaration of war," do not have to appear on the resolution.
Actually, as evidenced later in Voyager, not all Borg would have died. There are multiple examples of Borgs being disconnected from the collective and reverting back to their natural state. Which leads to the next point: the Borg are not a race. Society, perhaps, but they are not a race. Therefore it cannot be considered genocide.If Picard allowed the release of the virus, what would have happened would in fact, have been liberation for those captured borg.
Also, I think Picard was being a bit hypocritical. I find it odd that on one hand, when he has the means to release borg from captivity, it is called genocide, but when one of his crewmen was infected with the borg nanovirus in FC, Picard shot him as he was assimilated. By that rationale, that was murder.
Again, I agree.
By that point, the borg attempted invasion of sector 001 twice. When the borg from FC awoke in the past, they attempted to rejoin the borg in the delta quadrant in an attempt to bring a thrid (or first) invasion force. In fact, this could be argued how the borg were tipped off to Earth, and I have even read that ENterprise had a planned origin story for the Borg queen in mind, based on the ENterprise borg episode.
Not to mention the events of Voyager clearly show there was a state of war, in that the Borg were constantly trying to assimilate or destroy Voyager, whenever contact was made. Indeed, in Endgame, what do you think the bog were intent on doing, if the fleet had not been there to greet them? They would have captured or destroyed Voyager for sure, and armed with the intelligence of voyager, they could have laid down plans for a third and final invasion.
However, it is very possible that (if you only go by on-screen), that the borg were destroyed by the same or similar virus, when future Admiral Janeway was assimilated, which stopped the Queen and may have possibly finally did what Picard should have done in I, Borg.
Well... all in all, while I enjoy the borg episodes and First Contact, the entire Borg - Federation conflict in fictional reality is entirely unrealistic.
I mean if the Borg really wanted to destroy the federation, they could send like, 1000 cubes to do the job, they could take out the Cardassians, the Federation, the klingons and the Romulans... Hell I bet even 100 cubes could do the job.
But no, they send one cube.
Because they hate the Federation, OH SO MUCH.
Especially when it was discovered in End Game they could create a portal to within pissing distance of Earth...
Genocide would have been Beverly's earlier suggestion of using nanites......
The Queens are the Borg government, a dictatorship.
But then again, all effective methods of defense against the Borg could be considered genocide. Its the circumstances that necessitated drastic methods. The federation had no real defences and faced a very real threat of extinction (in the sense of being individuals) from the Borg. It was one of those situations where they had to fight back with as much force as necessary.
Separate names with a comma.