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Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
I have been thinking on this and wanted to know what other Star Trek fans thought as well. I believe that the Cardassians were expert Engineers, but not as focused on battle or science.

1. We know that the Cardassians aren't battle hardened Soldiers like the Klingons or Gorn. Heck, a chief security officer got pounded by Major Kira.

2. We also know that although the Cardassian union expanded, it was limited to a specific sector and the Science/Exploration levels weren't even close to that of the Federation.

If both of these comments are true, how did the Cardassians fight wars against the Federation and Klingons and reach a draw? Why were the Galors and Keldons so feared if they were inferior to the Federation's battleships?

I believe that the Cardassians ability to get the most out of what little they had proved to be the difference. They made vastly inferior cruisers strong enough to battle against stronger factions and that is what Engineers do best.

Just a topic of discussion to pass time...Please let me know your thoughts.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
01-30-2010, 01:03 PM
Once they come out with the Cardie faction in full swing, which looks like they are going to (ref: faction page), then I'm on board for sure. Would love to fly a Keldon down the throat of Starbase 1... muhuhahaha!
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
01-30-2010, 01:08 PM
I think you have it there my friend.

I am glad to see I am not the only person who is playing a Cardassian.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
01-30-2010, 01:23 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nador_Ekoor View Post
I have been thinking on this and wanted to know what other Star Trek fans thought as well. I believe that the Cardassians were expert Engineers, but not as focused on battle or science.

1. We know that the Cardassians aren't battle hardened Soldiers like the Klingons or Gorn. Heck, a chief security officer got pounded by Major Kira.

2. We also know that although the Cardassian union expanded, it was limited to a specific sector and the Science/Exploration levels weren't even close to that of the Federation.

If both of these comments are true, how did the Cardassians fight wars against the Federation and Klingons and reach a draw? Why were the Galors and Keldons so feared if they were inferior to the Federation's battleships?

I believe that the Cardassians ability to get the most out of what little they had proved to be the difference. They made vastly inferior cruisers strong enough to battle against stronger factions and that is what Engineers do best.

Just a topic of discussion to pass time...Please let me know your thoughts.
That makes a lot of sense. While the ships might not be as strong as a either the Federation or Klingon counterparts, the fact they could make them nearly on par and probably for a good deal less made them extremely dangerous encounters. I keep recalling "Sacrifice of Angels" with that good sized fleet pounding the Federation/Klingon fleet.

Although as a player faction, I'm quite eager to see how they would be since as per their treaty with the Federation, they wouldn't field a military as long as the Federation patrolled their space.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
01-30-2010, 01:29 PM
But don't forget Gul Madred and his movement, without the Obsidian Order protecting the current government a coup de tat sounds plausible. Second if a coup did take place, it would be while the Federation was busy with the Klingons (perfect timing)...with a government that controls no military and possibly a small inexperienced defense force...wouldn't take long for a second force of experienced Soldiers to take over.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
01-30-2010, 01:42 PM
How did the Cardassians hold their own against the federation and it's superior technology? Simple. Cardassians are ruthless. I forget which episode, but it was Deep Space 9 where Gul Dukat suggested that you take out the bridge of the ship and take the ship in toe. Cardassians use brutal tactics, plain and simple. They are effective at torture (There are FOUR LIGHTS!) and use other, less favourable practices such as slavery, just look at the Bajorans. Cardassians would gladly jeopardize innocent lives to protect military assets. The federation (as a whole, not individual members) would never consider blowing up a ship full of civilians that was transporting weapons and such. Same with installations. Put your genetic weapons lab underneath a school or internment camp and if anyone attacks it, release said weapons into the population and use propaganda to make the opponent look like the bad guys.

Cardassians are like Nazi's. Their leaders are evil, conniving and bloodthirsty, but they have good tailors.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
01-30-2010, 01:55 PM
Point taken, BUT

Four Lights, doesn't fly in STO. So among the three professions that make up the STO game, Engineering would fit best....IMO

And I resent the comments that I'm evil, conniving, and bloodthirsty.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
01-30-2010, 02:04 PM
Many things contribute to victory on the battlefield, and weapons and technology are only part.

Ruthlessness, morale, a willingness to fight on until the end even against desperate odds, training, numbers, dumb luck, deceptions, tactics, use of the technology you have, and other factors would also come into play.

Like how did the Soviets beat the Germans in WW2? The Germans had for the most part superior technology, but were still beaten. There were several reasons the Soviets won.
1. Numbers - This was the biggest reason. There were a lot more Russians then there were Germans. This dovetails with item number 2...
2. Willingness to expend large numbers of soldiers to win - The loss ratios for most battles were very much in favor of the Germans, but they still lost. This is because the Russians were willing and able to trade two or three of their soldiers for every German they killed. And the Soviets had enough available manpower to accept these losses.
3. Strategy - Most apparent during the period of 1943 onwards, the Soviets had a much clearer strategic plan then the Germans did. With the descent into madness of much of the German's leadership, they were unable to adapt to the Soviet stratagems being devised and implemented by Zhukov and Konev. The most telling event of this was Operation Bagration in 1944.
4. Supplies - The Germans never had enough supplies, particularly fuel, for their needs. Another constant problem was spare parts. The Soviets had enough warmaking supplies after 1942 and the entry of the United States in the war that supplies was never an issue.

I would imagine the Cardassians would use similar methods to defeat the Federations. Superior numbers, a willingness to accept a higher loss ratio to achieve victory, and use of superior strategy can easily overcome a technically superior foe.

It was not until the Allies in Star Trek had developed new strategies and brought up more combat units that they were able to defeat the Cardassians. Looking at Memory Alpha, it estimates that 7 million Cardassian military deaths occurred during the Dominion War (807 million death, 800 million which were civilian) which is A LOT for a 2 year conflict which if accurate would legitimize my theory of accepting a higher loss ratio to achieve victory.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
01-30-2010, 02:31 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nador_Ekoor View Post
I have been thinking on this and wanted to know what other Star Trek fans thought as well. I believe that the Cardassians were expert Engineers, but not as focused on battle or science.

1. We know that the Cardassians aren't battle hardened Soldiers like the Klingons or Gorn. Heck, a chief security officer got pounded by Major Kira.

2. We also know that although the Cardassian union expanded, it was limited to a specific sector and the Science/Exploration levels weren't even close to that of the Federation.

If both of these comments are true, how did the Cardassians fight wars against the Federation and Klingons and reach a draw? Why were the Galors and Keldons so feared if they were inferior to the Federation's battleships?

I believe that the Cardassians ability to get the most out of what little they had proved to be the difference. They made vastly inferior cruisers strong enough to battle against stronger factions and that is what Engineers do best.

Just a topic of discussion to pass time...Please let me know your thoughts.
Seriously, good question. I'll try to answer it.

Okay, to start, there were a few extenuating circumstances that can be explained more easily if you go all over the IP, not just in what was televised. From what I have seen, read, and played, Cardassians were primarily focused on battle and expansion, but were a middle ground between the ultra combat worthy Klingons and the enormously secretive Romulans. The Obsidian Order, while considered in many cases as a step up from the Tal Shiar, were not allowed to field military equipment, so their military contributions are arguable.

For your actual question, the Cardassian people were a spiritual people a long time ago. Eventually, the lack of resources on their own world caused their military policies to gain more and more favor until the Central Command effectively ruled the Cardassian people, and the Detapa Council was dissolved. This continued for a few hundred years, until the military was overthrown by the growing dissident movement following Enabran Tain's disastrous attempt to eliminate the Founders. Power was only restored to the military when Gul Dukat negotiated for Cardassia's entry into the Dominion. Chances are that ever Cardassian has their own profession, but most are required to put in military service from a certain age. Likely, those would be the engineers, scientists, freighter crews, that sort of thing.

Now, on to your evidence.

Point #1: Damar was not an experienced security officer, Dukat had him as his assistant and while for a time he was doing Odo's duties on DS9, but he was not trained as a security officer. Also, Kira, as an experienced Bajoran "terrorist" would be extremely familiar with Cardassian physiology and anatomy, making it likely that someone who was really overconfident (Typical Cardassian attitude towards Bajorans) would get their asses kicked. At other points in the series, Kira is seen beating Klingons, Jem'Hadar, and others in hand to hand combat.

Point #2: The Cardassian Union did expand, but on most of their borders were either other powers (Federation, Klingons, etc.) or hazardous areas, such as the Badlands. I would imagine that the Badlands bordered probably at least half of the Cardassian Union. And no, their science/exploration levels weren't nearly as sophisticated as the Federation, because they were primarily concerned with knowledge for the sake of power, not knowledge for the sake of knowledge.

Point #3: The ships of the Cardassian fleets, the Keldon's and Galors, outnumbered the Federation ships during that war by a substantial number. Not every Federation ship is like the Galaxy class, of which there were precious few during the running of The Next Generation. Other ships like the Nebula and even the Ambassador class would have done well against Cardassian ships, but for the most part, on a purely military basis, Cardassia had a drastic advantage in men and equipment. Usually it was the ingenuity of the crews, or in the case of the time that Picard was captured by the Cardassians and Jellico took command, a major screw up in the Cardassian's planning that won. As for the Cardassian War against the Klingons, they didn't reach a draw. The Cardassians lost a lot of space to the Klingon invasion, that only slowed down when the Federation opened a second front against the Klingons. The Cardassians only managed to rout the Klingons once the Dominion ships entered their space.

What it comes down to is that I'm sure the Cardassians have capable engineers, like all races will. The shows, and indeed most of the games, are made from the point of view of the Federation, so they will focus on the aspects of that. How many Galors and Keldons were destroyed by Martok's Negh'var alone? How many times have we solo'd a Negh'var in a light freaking cruiser in STO?

But yes, I would love to see a number of races fleshed out like the Federation, from the Klingons, Cardassians, Romulans, Breen, maybe even the Alpha Quadrant Jem'Hadar. That's probably asking for a lot, but I can dream, dammit.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
01-30-2010, 10:27 PM
CPT Raimus, Thank you for your argument...much of the history I knew...but you are well read and articulate in your explanation. Thank You...
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