Subject : Options for Resolving Darcili
From : Ambassador Joy Seven
To : The Federation Council
CC : Norman One (Coordinator of Mudd)
Classification : High
On the late 20th century Earth, prior to implementing a foreign
intervention, a General Colin Powell of the United States of North
America asked his civilian command authority a series of questions.
The general himself said it is improper for the military to question
the civilian command authority. Still, it seems proper that his
questions should be considered and answered before using force in a
- What is the objective of this operation?
- Are we sure we have sufficient force to achieve this
- Are the politicians and people willing to pay the price in
blood and iron to achieve this objective?
- Are the politicians setting undue political restraints which
would prevent the military from achieving the objective, or
significantly increase the costs?
- After the objective has been achieved, do we have a plan to
- After we have gotten out, will the basic problem that caused
the conflict have been resolved?
Levels of Escalation
We are committing to force at Darcili. I believe, for the most
part, General Powell's questions can be answered in satisfactory
ways. However, we have multiple options, multiple levels at which we
can commit to the use of force.
I shall list six general levels of escalation, six options
available. I will sketch very briefly very high level objectives and
methods. I do not doubt these six could be adjusted, and that
additional significantly different proposals could be made.
- Apply political pressure to end the fighting. Implement arms
and / or trade embargoes.
- Stage limited hit and run raids to resolve Federation
interests in the conflict. One or more of the following might be
attempted. Recover Amber. Cripple the Darcili time line altering
capability. Capture high ranking Darcili officials responsible for
criminal acts such as time line alteration, initiating a war of
aggression, and genocide.
- Peacekeeping from orbit. Make aggression a bad option.
Establish presence in orbit and use orbital bombardment to prevent
attacks across a defined neutral zone by one or both sides.
- Peacekeeping. Again, the objective is to block aggression by
enforcing a neutral zone. Placing troops and sensors on the ground
might give more options, might make the neutral zone defense more
- Conventional war. Destroy the ability of one or both sides to
commit aggression. Destroy from orbit military formations,
armories, energy production, transportation, command/control,
communications, and in general the ability to use force. Land
ground forces after bombardment phase to force unconditional
- War of terror. Target civilians and the economy, rather than
military capability. As an example, Risa recently proposed
destroying a city a day until Amber was returned.
Planet Mudd's Concerns
For the most part, Powell's questions can be satisfactorily
answered for most levels of escalation. I shall not bother to answer
all six questions for all six levels of escalation. However, I shall
raise a few points which concern me.
I do not believe weapons or trade embargoes will resolve the basic
problems which started the war. Perhaps these pressures should be
applied in support of other measures, but I do not expect that
embargoes alone will resolve anything.
While limited raids might resolve the Federation's interests in
the conflict, and we seem committed already to this level of force, I
do not believe hit and run raids are likely to end the fighting, to
bring peace to the planet. If ending the conflict is our objective,
we will have to look at additional actions.
The rules of engagement on peacekeeping missions often prevent the
peace keepers from resolving the conflict using force. Peace keeping
missions are defensive. One cannot win wars with defense, only
prolong wars. Thus, it is common that 'mission creep' shifts the role
of peace keepers from defensive to offensive, as the rational desire
to strike back develops. Still, the force and structure for
successful decisive offensive operation is seldom available to forces
originally deployed as peace keepers.
Peace keeping can be helpful to temporarily patch up an imperfect
political solution. Peace keeping missions are useful if the majority
wants peace, but fanatic extremists need be contained. Peace keeping
might be performed short term, to protect a withdrawal of Fanali
population elsewhere, for example. However, unless we get much more
support for a cease fire from the Darcili and, or unless we are
willing to station a significant force for an indefinite time, it
seems unlikely that a defensive force protecting a neutral zone can
provide an end to the conflict.
I am uncertain of the support of the people and planets of the
Federation to fight a decisive conventional war. If our objective is
to quickly end the bloodshed and restore peace, fighting a gloves off
offensive war may cost less lives and bring peace sooner than other
options. However, if we are to take the offensive, we should have a
clearly defined, achievable, and ethically correct objective.
I do not believe we will have the support of the people and
planets of the Federation to wage a war of terror.
Planet Mudd's Current Position
Mudd will support embargoes and limited raids. We will not support
peace keeping - defending a neutral zone - without considerably more
support and participation from the on planet belligerents. We will
listen to the opinions of other planets on fighting a decisive
conventional war, targeting primarily military objectives. We will
oppose a war of terror, where the civilian population is the primary