Taris says "I am a military commander, and I would prefer to remain so. The seas of politics are rife with submerged hazards and hidden perils, and a wise person does well to avoid them. But my Empire calls and I cannot resist her plea."
This line smacks so much to me of how George Washington spoke on many of the military/political agendas of his time .. a man wanting to live quietly but called back into service for his country.
I hate to say it but, it sounds like there may be a new civil war in the Klingon Empire. Martok would have to be killed or have no other alternative for him to break the Khitomer accords. Something big is going to happened there. ....Just my opinion.
With the Federation so strapped for ships to spare they should of swallowed their pride and considered hiring privateers. Course.... I could also see privateers working for the Klingons which would explain the presence of other alien races working with them.