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| conflict_name = Dominion War
 
| conflict_name = Dominion War
 
| image = USS Sitak and USS Majestic hit.jpg
 
| image = USS Sitak and USS Majestic hit.jpg
| imagecap = {{USS|Sitak}} (bottom left) is destroyed and {{USS|Majestic}} (center) is badly damaged during "[[Operation Return]]", one of the hard-won victories by the Federation Alliance
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| imagecap = {{USS|Sitak}} (bottom left) is destroyed and {{USS|Majestic}} (upper right) is badly damaged during ''[[Operation Return]]''
| date = [[2373]]-[[2375]]
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| date = [[2373]][[2375]]
 
| location = [[Alpha Quadrant]]
 
| location = [[Alpha Quadrant]]
| result = [[Federation Alliance]] victory;<br />Federation Alliance occupation of [[Cardassia]];<br />Withdrawal of [[Dominion]] forces to the [[Gamma Quadrant]]
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| result = [[Federation Alliance]] victory<br />
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:[[Treaty of Bajor]]<br/><br/>Collapse of the Cardassian Union<br/><br/>Permanent withdrawal of Dominion forces to the Gamma Quadrant<br/><br/>Resumption of Federation-Romulan Cold War
 
<!-- combatant 1 -->
 
<!-- combatant 1 -->
 
| combatant1 = '''[[Federation Alliance]]'''
 
| combatant1 = '''[[Federation Alliance]]'''
:[[Federation]]<br />[[Klingon Empire|Klingon&nbsp;Empire]]<br />[[Romulan Empire|Romulan&nbsp;Empire]]<br />[[Cardassian Liberation Front]]
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:[[Federation]]<br />[[Klingon Empire|Klingon&nbsp;Empire]]<br />[[Romulan Empire|Romulan Star Empire]] (2374)<br />[[Bajoran Provisional Government|Bajor]] (2374)<br />[[Cardassian Liberation Front]] (2375)<br /> [[Cardassian Union]] (2375)
| commander1 = <sub>[[Federation]]:</sub><br />[[Benjamin Sisko]]<br />[[William Ross]]<br /><sub><br />[[Klingon Empire|Klingon&nbsp;Empire]]:</sub><br />[[Martok]]<br />[[Gowron]]&dagger;<br /><sub><br />[[Romulan Empire|Romulan&nbsp;Empire]]:</sub><br />[[Kimara Cretak]]<br />[[Velal]]<br /><sub><br />[[Cardassian Liberation Front]]:</sub><br />[[Damar]]&dagger;
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| commander1 = [[William Ross]]<br />[[Benjamin Sisko]]<br />[[Martok]]<br/>[[Gowron]]&dagger;<br/>[[Neral]]<br>[[Kimara Cretak]]<br/>[[Letant]]<br/>[[Velal]]<br/>[[Shinzon|Shinzon of Remus]]<br/>[[Shakaar Edon]]<br/>[[Kira Nerys]]<br/>[[Damar]]&dagger;
| strength1 = Unknown number of ships.
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| strength1 = Thousands of ships
| losses1 = Unknown, severe
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| losses1 = Extremely heavy
 
<!-- combatant 2 -->
 
<!-- combatant 2 -->
| combatant2 = '''[[Dominion-Breen Alliance]]'''
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| combatant2 = '''[[Dominion-Breen Alliance]]''':
:[[Dominion]]<br />[[Cardassian Union|Cardassian&nbsp;Union]]<br />[[Breen Confederacy|Breen&nbsp;Confederacy]]<br />[[Son'a]]
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[[Dominion|The Dominion]]
| commander2 = <sub>[[Dominion]]:</sub><br />[[Female Changeling]]<br />[[Weyoun]]&dagger;<br /><sub><br />[[Cardassian Union|Cardassian&nbsp;Union]]:</sub><br />[[Dukat]]<br />[[Damar]] ([[Cardassian Liberation Front|later started rebellion]])<br />[[Broca]]&dagger;<br /><sub><br />[[Breen Confederacy|Breen&nbsp;Confederacy]]:</sub><br />[[Gor]]<br />[[Pran]]
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* [[Jem'Hadar]]
| strength2 = At height: 30,000 starships
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[[Cardassian Union|Cardassian&nbsp;Union]] (2373-2375)<br />[[Breen Confederacy|Breen&nbsp;Confederacy]] (2375)<br />[[Son'a]]
| losses2 = Over 807 million [[Cardassian]]s, near complete destruction of [[Jem'Hadar]] forces in the Alpha Quadrant, unknown number of [[Breen]] losses
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| commander2 = [[Changeling|The Founders]]<br />[[Weyoun]]&dagger;<br/>[[Dukat]]<br/>[[Damar]]&dagger; ([[Cardassian Liberation Front|rebelled]])<br/>[[Broca]]&dagger;<br/>[[Gor]]<br/>[[Pran]]
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| strength2 = Thousands of ships
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| losses2 = '''Cardassian''':<br/>7 million troops killed<br/>800 million civilians killed<br/><br/>Unknown Jem'Hadar and Breen losses, though likely very heavy
 
}}
 
}}
 
{| class="wiki-sidebar"
 
{| class="wiki-sidebar"
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| style="border-left:1px solid #aaa; padding-left: 0.25em; width:50%; horizontal-align:center; text-align:center;" |[[File:Cardassian Union logo.png|70px|center|Cardassian Union]]
 
| style="border-left:1px solid #aaa; padding-left: 0.25em; width:50%; horizontal-align:center; text-align:center;" |[[File:Cardassian Union logo.png|70px|center|Cardassian Union]]
 
|-
 
|-
| style="border-right:1px solid #aaa; width:50%; horizontal-align:center; text-align:center;" |[[File:Romulan Star Empire logo.png|125px|center|Romulan Star Empire]]
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| style="border-right:1px solid #aaa; width:50%; horizontal-align:center; text-align:center;" |[[File:Romulan Star Empire logo.svg|125px|center|Romulan Star Empire]]
 
| style="border-left:1px solid #aaa; padding-left: 0.25em; width:50%; horizontal-align:center; text-align:center;" |[[File:Breen Confederacy logo.png|70px|center|Breen Confederacy]]
 
| style="border-left:1px solid #aaa; padding-left: 0.25em; width:50%; horizontal-align:center; text-align:center;" |[[File:Breen Confederacy logo.png|70px|center|Breen Confederacy]]
 
|-
 
|-
 
|}
 
|}
''"The Alpha Quadrant seems wracked with chaos &ndash; it could ''use'' some order...."''<br />
 
''"Imposing your type of 'order' on the Alpha Quadrant...may prove more difficult than you imagine."''<br />
 
:- The '''[[Female Changeling]]''' and '''[[Odo]]''', [[The Search, Part II (episode)|2371]]
 
   
The '''Dominion War''' was a two-year interstellar conflict between the [[Dominion]] and the [[Federation Alliance]], from late [[2373]] to late [[2375]], that consumed the entire [[Alpha Quadrant]] in one of the most destructive and bloody wars in [[galaxy|galactic]] history. By the end of the war, the Alpha Quadrant had lost a notable power &ndash; the [[Cardassian Union]] &ndash; the [[Klingon Defense Force]] was set back for decades, and there remained a catastrophic death toll for all powers involved.
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{{aquote|The Alpha Quadrant seems wracked with chaos &ndash; it could use some order....''"<br />"''Imposing your type of 'order' on the Alpha Quadrant...may prove more difficult than you imagine.|The Female Changeling''' and '''Odo|2371|The Search, Part II}}
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The '''Dominion War''' was a major interstellar conflict, fought from [[2373]] to [[2375]], though related conflicts began earlier. The war involved all major powers of the [[Alpha Quadrant|Alpha]] and [[Gamma Quadrant|Gamma Quadrants]], formed into two opposing military alliances; the [[Federation Alliance]] and the [[Dominion-Breen Alliance]]. Marked by massive civilian casualties, including the [[Battle of Cardassia|Jem'Hadar bombardment of Cardassia]] (in which approximately 800 million Cardassians were killed), and the mobilisation of military fleets on a scale never seen prior, it was one of the bloodiest and most destructive wars in galactic history.
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After a series of calculated steps to [[Dominion cold war|destabilise the political landscape of the Alpha Quadrant]], the Dominion [[Second Battle of Deep Space 9|launched an attack on Deep Space 9]] after the Federation provocatively mined the [[Bajoran wormhole]]. After a sluggish start, the Dominion rapidly conquered vast swathes of Federation and Klingon territory. In mid-2374, Allied forces [[Operation Return|recaptured Deep Space 9]], though the Dominion soon recovered, [[Battle of Betazed|conquering Betazed]].
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After the death of [[Senator]] [[Vreenak]], the [[Romulan Star Empire]] declared war on the Dominion in late 2374. Allied forces [[First Battle of Chin'toka|launched a joint invasion of Cardassian space]] late in the year. Requiring additional manpower, the Dominion signed a treaty with the [[Breen Confederacy]], and, with their aid, launched a [[Breen attack on Earth|raid on Earth]], and [[Second Battle of Chin'toka|recaptured the Chin'toka system]].
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Political instabilities within the precarious Dominion alliance triggered a [[Cardassian Liberation Front|major rebellion by Cardassian military forces]], rendering the Dominion position untenable. As the [[Dominion-Breen Alliance]] began to unravel, the Allies [[Battle of Cardassia|launched a massive invasion of Cardassian space]] in late 2375, sealing the final defeat of the Dominion.
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The [[Treaty of Bajor]] formally ended the fighting in late 2375.
   
 
== Prelude ==
 
== Prelude ==
''"You have no idea what's begun here."''<br />
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''Main article: [[Dominion cold war|Dominion Cold War]]''
:&ndash; '''[[Eris]]''', [[The Jem'Hadar (episode)|2370]]
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Following initial [[Alpha Quadrant]] expeditions into the [[Gamma Quadrant]], rumours began to filter through of a ruthless race of conquerors known only as "The Dominion". In [[2370]], first contact was officially made between the [[Federation]] and the [[Dominion]], when the Jem'Hadar destroyed the [[Starfleet]] vessel [[USS Odyssey|''Odyssey'']]. A state of cold war rapidly developed thereafter between several of the [[Alpha Quadrant|Alpha Quadrant's]] major powers and the Dominion. A Dominion invasion was widely regarded as inevitable, as the [[Founders]] were driven by a xenophobic need to exert absolute authority over all other civilisations. ({{DS9|The Search, Part II}})
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The Dominion began to infiltrate the [[Alpha Quadrant]] with [[changelings]] masquerading as important officials, in an attempt to destabilise the fragile political landscape between the major powers. By manipulating a plan originating with [[Enabran Tain]], the Dominion destroyed the [[Obsidian Order]] and nearly crippled the [[Tal Shiar]] at the [[Battle of the Omarion Nebula]] in [[2371]]. The subsequent power vacuum left in the absence of the Obsidian Order led to a [[coup]] on [[Cardassia]], resulting in the overthrow of the [[Cardassian Central Command]] by the [[Detapa Council]].
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By manipulating frustrated warrior sentiments in the [[Klingon Empire]], and implanting false information that the Cardassian coup had been engineered by the Founders, the Dominion was able to trigger the [[Klingon-Cardassian War]]. The [[Federation]] condemned the Klingon invasion, leading to a severe deterioration of relations between the two powers, ultimately concluding with the [[Federation-Klingon War (2372-73)|Federation-Klingon War]].
   
Following the [[Federation]]'s first official contact with the Dominion in [[2370]], a [[Dominion cold war|cold war]] developed between several of the [[Alpha Quadrant]]'s major powers and the Dominion that lasted for three years. By placing [[Changeling]] infiltrators in important positions within the governments of the Alpha and [[Beta Quadrant]]'s major powers, the Dominion was able to [[Battle of the Omarion Nebula|wipe out]] the [[Cardassian]] [[Obsidian Order]], drastically reduce the capabilities of the [[Romulan]] [[Tal Shiar]], nearly cause a war between the Federation and the [[Tzenkethi]], and start a [[Klingon-Cardassian War|war]] between the [[Klingon Empire]] and the [[Cardassian Union]], an act which concurrently caused a [[Federation-Klingon War (2372-73)|conflict]] between the Federation and the Klingons. ({{DS9|The Die is Cast|The Adversary|The Way of the Warrior}})
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Concurrently, the Dominion was almost able to instigate a war between the Federation and the [[Tzenkethi]], and caused mass hysteria on Earth following the bombing of a conference. ({{DS9|The Die is Cast|The Adversary|The Way of the Warrior|Apocalypse Rising|Homefront}})
   
 
[[File:Dominion invasion.jpg|thumb|left|The Dominion invades the Alpha Quadrant]]
 
[[File:Dominion invasion.jpg|thumb|left|The Dominion invades the Alpha Quadrant]]
The conflict between the Klingons and the Cardassians is what paved the way for the Dominion to gain a foothold in the Alpha Quadrant. In mid-[[2373]], [[Gul]] [[Dukat]], frustrated with the losses the Cardassians had taken from the Klingons, negotiated the entry of the Cardassian Union into the Dominion. The Dominion immediately began fortifying the Cardassian Union with weekly convoys of [[warship]]s and troops from the [[Gamma Quadrant]]. With his new Dominion allies, Dukat was able to make good on a promise to drive the Klingons from Cardassian space and wipe out the [[Maquis]] resistance in the [[Demilitarized Zone]]. At this point the Federation and Klingons renewed their [[Khitomer Accords|alliance]] and agreed to stand side-by-side against the new Dominion-Cardassian threat. ({{DS9|By Inferno's Light|Blaze of Glory}})
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The Klingon invasion of Cardassia had all but destroyed Cardassian infrastructure. In mid-[[2373]], frustrated at the apparent cowardice of the [[Detapa Council]], and the broken state of the Cardassian people, [[Gul]] [[Dukat]] negotiated the entry of the Cardassian Union into the Dominion. Dukat himself was placed as head of the constituent Cardassian state. The Dominion rapidly began fortifying [[Cardassia]] with heavily armed convoys on a weekly basis. Within three days of their arrival, the [[Jem'Hadar]] had expelled the Klingons from Cardassian space entirely, and completely annihilated the [[Maquis]] in the [[Demilitarized Zone]]. In the face of the new Dominion foothold in the Alpha Quadrant, the Federation and the Klingons renewed the [[Khitomer Accords]]. ({{DS9|By Inferno's Light|Blaze of Glory}}) It can be argued that the Dominion specifically manipulated events so that Cardassia would be substantially weakened and thereby made an easy target for the Dominion's political advances as it was a Changeling in disguise who instigated the Klingon invasion of Cardassia which destroyed the Cardassian Union's home planet and infrastructure and thereby made them vulnerable to manipulation. It should be noted that the Dominion had no real interest in helping Cardassia, but rather, saw the Cardassian people as a tool, a means to an end in order to facilitate their invasion into the Alpha Quadrant.
   
Although a technical state of war did not yet exist, several skirmishes occurred near the Cardassian border over the next several months, with ships such as the {{USS|Tian An Men}} and the {{IKS|B'Moth}} either being destroyed or reported missing. Additionally, the Dominion began securing nonaggression pacts with several of the Alpha Quadrant's regional powers, including the [[Tholian Assembly]], the [[Miradorn]], the [[Bajoran]]s, and perhaps most significantly, the [[Romulan Star Empire]]. Hoping to prevent any further Dominion reinforcements from reaching [[Cardassia Prime|Cardassia]], the Federation opted to mine the entrance to the [[Bajoran wormhole]], a move that [[Starfleet]] believed would lead to war. ({{DS9|Soldiers of the Empire|In the Cards|Call to Arms}})
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Although open war did not begin immediately, violence along the [[Cardassian border]] escalated, with ships such as the [[USS Tian An Men|''Tian An Men'']]'' ''and the [[B'Moth|''B'Moth'']]'' ''being reported missing, likely destroyed. The Dominion began making strategic political inroads in the Alpha Quadrant, signing [[nonaggression pact|non-aggression pacts]] with the [[Tholian Assembly]], the [[Miradorn]], [[Bajoran Provisional Government|Bajor]], and, perhaps most significantly, the [[Romulan Star Empire]]. With five large convoys having entered the Alpha Quadrant unopposed, the [[Federation Alliance]] realised they would soon face an impossible strategic position.
   
== Total war begins ==
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In late 2373, the Federation decided to mine the entrance to the [[Bajoran wormhole]] with [[self-replicating mine|self-replicating mines]], in a last-ditch effort to permanently stop the flow of Dominion reinforcements into the Alpha Quadrant. Both sides knew that this act would lead to open war. ({{DS9|Soldiers of the Empire|In the Cards|Call to Arms}})
[[File:Dominion fires.jpg|thumb|The first shots of the war being fired on Deep Space 9]]
 
''"We're losing the peace, which means a war could be our only hope."'' <br />
 
:- '''[[Benjamin Sisko]]''', [[Call to Arms (episode)|2373]]
 
   
Upon learning of the Federation's intent to mine the wormhole, a large Dominion fleet was dispatched to [[Deep Space 9]] to capture the station. Despite the heavy armaments, the station did not have the resources to fend off the Dominion fleet without reinforcements from the Federation. The Starfleet personnel were forced to abandon their post shortly after the activation of the minefield. However, while the Dominion forces were kept occupied at DS9, a Federation-Klingon task force crossed the border into Cardassia and destroyed the Dominion shipyards at [[Torros III]]. ({{DS9|Call to Arms|Behind the Lines}})
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== Open war begins ==
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[[File:Dominion fires.jpg|thumb|The first shots of the Dominion War, fired on Deep Space 9]]
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"''We're losing the peace, which means a war could be our only hope.''"
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:- '''Benjamin Sisko''', [[Call to Arms (episode)|2373]]
   
=== Dominion success and stalemate ===
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Intent on preventing the Federation from completing the minefield, Weyoun arrived on [[Deep Space 9]] and delivered an ultimatum; either Sisko would remove the mines, or the Dominion would. Sisko refused the ultimatum, and, two days later, a large Dominion fleet [[Second Battle of Deep Space 9|attacked and captured Deep Space 9]]. Trusting that the minefield would be activated in time, the [[Federation Alliance]] opted not to reinforce the station, but used the opportunity to take advantage of the diverted Dominion ships to [[Torros III|destroy the Dominion shipyards at Torros III]]. Though the minefield was successfully activated, the Allies was forced to retreat from the [[Bajoran system]], and the station was subsequently garrisoned by Dominion forces. ({{DS9|Call to Arms|Behind the Lines}})[[File:Dukat and weyoun.jpg|thumb|left|Dukat and Weyoun confer over Dominion strategy]]
[[File:Dukat and weyoun.jpg|thumb|Dukat and Weyoun discuss the evidently imminent Dominion victory over the Federation]]
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Over the following months, Allied forces were forced to retreat on all fronts in the wake of several decisively successful Dominion campaigns. At each instance, the Allies suffered catastrophic losses. During this campaign, [[Starfleet]] suffered one of its worst defeats of the war when the [[Seventh Fleet]] was dispatched to halt the Dominion's blitzkrieg advance at the [[Tyra system]]. In the subsequent battle, 98 starships were destroyed out of a fleet of 112, leaving thousands dead. Morale among the forces of the [[Federation Alliance]] plummeted, and it became a question of when, not if, the Alliance would be defeated. ({{DS9|A Time to Stand}})
Over the next three months, the Federation and Klingon fleets engaged Dominion forces in a large number of bloody battles. However, each time the Federation-Klingon alliance was forced to retreat. In one attempt to stop the Dominion's advance into their territory, the Federation dispatched its Seventh Fleet &ndash; a force composed of 112 vessels &ndash; to the Tyra system. The Seventh Fleet was also forced to retreat, but only fourteen ships were able to make it back to their lines &ndash; a disastrous defeat for the Federation. Although Federation citizens at home were apprised of the military situation on the front lines, matters were far worse than the [[Federation News Service|news service]] was reporting. ({{DS9|A Time to Stand}})
 
   
Although Starfleet was yet to defeat the Dominion in a major operation, they were able to score some minor victories here and there. Over three months following the outbreak of hostilities, [[Captain]] [[Benjamin Sisko]] lead an infiltration mission which destroyed the Dominion's primary [[ketracel-white]] storage facility in Cardassian space, further complicating their supply problems. Dukat responded by pushing deeper into Federation-held space, hoping to score a crushing victory over Starfleet before the final rations of ketracel-white would be distributed (provided the wormhole could not be reopened). By the end of the following month, the front line extended across Federation territory, with the [[Vulcan]] and [[Bolian]] home systems finding themselves within contested regions. Shortly after another infiltration mission which managed to destroy a massive Dominion sensor array in the [[Argolis Cluster]], Starfleet launched [[Bolian Operation|an operation]] which managed to alleviate the pressure on the Bolian front. Nevertheless, morale was plummeting to such levels that even the Klingons were beginning to doubt whether they could defeat the Dominion. ({{DS9|Behind the Lines|Favor the Bold}})
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While the Allies suffered repeated defeats in large fleet actions, [[Starfleet]] and [[Klingon]] ships had greater success in raiding operations and in combating small patrols of Jem'Hadar ships. Such operations included the destruction of the Dominion's primary [[ketracel-white]] storage facility in the Alpha Quadrant, and the destruction of a massive Dominion [[sensor array]] in the [[Argolis Cluster]]. The Dominion began suffering a shortage of [[ketracel-white]], greatly concerning the Cardassians in particular. [[Glinn]] [[Damar]] even proposed that the last rations of white be poisoned if new supplies could not be secured, preventing the Jem'Hadar from running amok.
   
By the second quarter of that year, after months of retreating from Dominion forces, Captain Sisko attempted to persuade Starfleet Command that the Federation must go on the offensive. He proposed a plan recapture Deep Space 9 using a task force consisting of the Second, Fifth and Ninth Fleets. [[Admiral]] [[Coburn]] objected to the plan, fearing too many ships would be diverted away from [[Earth]], leaving it open to a Dominion attack. Sisko was eventually able to convince him that the key to winning the war was preventing Dominion reinforcements from coming through the wormhole. The plan was approved, however, the Federation received intelligence that the Dominion was only three days away from deactivating minefield and the Ninth Fleet was still four days away. In addition, the [[Klingon Empire]] had not yet agreed to participate in the operation, citing the same fears as Admiral Coburn, only that it would leave the Empire vulnerable, and not just Earth. Nevertheless, Starfleet felt it had no choice but to deploy its task force with only the Second and Fifth Fleets in order to reach DS9 before the minefield was deactivated. Without the minefield, the Federation would almost certainly be overrun by the Dominion reinforcements. The task force of over 600 Federation ships departed from [[Starbase 375]] and headed towards the [[Bajoran system]]. Realizing that the Federation fleet was on a direct course for Deep Space 9, Dukat pulled a significant number of Dominion ships off the front lines to crush the enemy fleet and prevent them from retaking the station. With only hours left until the minefield was destroyed, Weyoun assured Dukat that all the ships lost during this engagement would be easily replaced with the 2,800 Jem'Hadar ships waiting on the other side of the wormhole. He reiterated that holding onto the station was the top priority. ({{DS9|Favor the Bold}})
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Nevertheless, the Dominion continued to conquer large swathes of Federation and Klingon territory, even approaching the [[Vulcan]] and [[Bolian]] systems. On Deep Space 9, efforts to dismantle the [[minefield]] surrounding the wormhole were finally beginning to bear fruit. Although Allied forces scored several minor successes in single-ship duels and in small groups, the inexorable Dominion advance compelled them to continually retreat. Morale sunk lower, with even the Klingons doubting they could defeat the Dominion. ({{DS9|Behind the Lines|Favor the Bold}})
   
[[File:Klingon fleet, Sacrifice of Angels.jpg|thumb|The Klingons assist the suffering Federation forces during the mission to retake Deep Space 9]]
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== Counter-offensive ==
A Dominion fleet of 1,254 ships intercepted the Federation fleet and the battle to retake Deep Space 9 began. Captain Sisko attempted to draw out Cardassian forces and open a hole in the Dominion's lines, in order to punch through and reach the station in time. Dukat, realizing Sisko's plan, saw an opportunity of his own; he would allow the Federation to force its way through, only to be surrounded and closed in by the overwhelming force at his disposal. With the Federation forces taking heavy casualties, the battle seemed almost lost. However, a massive Klingon fleet suddenly decloaked and engaged the Dominion forces, turning the tide of the battle to the allies' favor and enabling the ''Defiant'' to break through the lines to Deep Space 9. Although Dukat made good on his promise to destroy the minefield, it proved useless to the Dominion, as Captain Sisko entered the wormhole and persuaded the [[Prophet]]s to wipe out the Dominion reinforcements entirely. With no reinforcements on their way, and the fleet battle in favor of the Federation-Klingon forces, the Dominion was forced to withdraw from the station. [[Operation Return]] was the first major alliance victory of the war, and also saw the end of Dukat's leadership of Cardassia. His underling, [[Damar]], replaced him. ({{DS9|Sacrifice of Angels}})
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"''Earth isn't the key to the Alpha Quadrant, the wormhole is, and, whoever controls Deep Space Nine, controls the wormhole.''"
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:- '''Benjamin Sisko''', [[Favor the Bold (episode)|2374]]
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By the latter half of [[2374]], the Allies were perilously close to defeat. A major victory was needed, if anything to boost morale. [[Captain]] [[Benjamin Sisko]], knowing the Dominion would likely figure out how to disable the minefield, proposed to [[Starfleet Command]] the [[Federation Alliance]] had to go on the offensive. Sisko's plan was to assemble a task force to recapture Deep Space 9, the most strategically important site in the [[Alpha Quadrant]], at the mouth of the [[Bajoran wormhole|wormhole]]. Despite misgivings that it would leave [[Earth]] vulnerable, Starfleet approved the plan.
   
The war entered a temporary lull at this point; the Dominion retreated to within Cardassian space, and activity along the border was rare. During this lull, the Dominion sued for peace with the Federation, even offering to withdraw their forces from a sizable amount of territory which would be ceded back. An analysis by a [[genetically engineered]] think tank led by Doctor [[Julian Bashir]] determined that the Dominion was merely trying to acquire the [[Kabrel system]], which would allow them to produce ketracel-white in the Alpha Quadrant, addressing the supply problem they were facing without wormhole access. However, Bashir's think tank projected that it was actually favorable to take the territory without a fight while they had the chance, despite giving the Dominion the ability to produce ketracel-white in the process, because it would be more difficult for them to retake all of the Dominion's large amount of controlled space without incredible casualties if they did not. Although the Dominion would use the opportunity to regroup its forces, they warned, the Federation and Klingons were in far more need of a respite than the Dominion, and would take away more from a short pause in fighting. Weighing the pros and cons, the [[augment]]s suggested the Federation accept the peace proposal. Instead, the Federation made a counter-proposal, much to the Dominion's dissatisfaction. Fighting resumed some weeks later. ({{DS9|Statistical Probabilities}})
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The Klingons proved more difficult to convince; [[Chancellor]] [[Gowron]] held the same concerns as [[Starfleet]], in committing as many ships as would be required to re-take [[Deep Space 9]], it would leave the Empire vulnerable. While [[General]] [[Martok]] and [[Lieutenant Commander]] [[Worf]] made [[Starfleet|Starfleet's]] plea to Gowron in person, Federation forces began assembling at [[Starbase 375]]. Unfortunately, Starfleet soon received intelligence from active resistance members on Deep Space 9 that the minefield was only three days from being destroyed.
   
Despite their successful retaking of Deep Space 9, the Federation and Klingon forces were far from victory. Ships patrolling the [[Federation-Cardassian border|Cardassian border]] were frequently attacked. The {{USS|Cortez}} was lost with all hands during a border patrol. The Dominion also began breeding Jem'Hadar in the Alpha Quadrant, to compensate for the lack of reinforcements from the Gamma Quadrant. By [[2375]], the Dominion's Ketracel-white shortage was mitigated when the [[Son'a]] began producing the drug for the Jem'Hadar. ({{DS9|Far Beyond the Stars|One Little Ship|Resurrection|Penumbra}}, {{film|9}})
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With no word having arrived from the Klingons, and only two-thirds of the Starfleet force assembled, [[Vice Admiral]] [[William Ross]] authorised [[Benjamin Sisko]] to lead the 627 ships assembled in an effort to prevent the Dominion from removing the mines. In response, Dukat pulled 1,254 warships from the front lines to intercept the Federation fleet, stalling Dominion advances into Allied territory. ({{DS9|Favor the Bold}})
   
In late 2374, the Dominion launched a successful invasion of [[Betazed]] from the [[Kalandra sector]]. The Federation was caught off guard because [[Starfleet Intelligence]] had mistakenly believed the Kalandra sector was too far from Dominion supply lines to pose a threat. In addition, the Federation's [[Tenth Fleet]], which was assigned to defend [[Betazoid system]], was caught out of position during a battle exercise. Betazed's own planetary defense systems were obsolete and undermanned. With the capture of this system, the Dominion was in a position to invade [[Vulcan]], [[Andor]], [[Tellar]] and [[Alpha Centauri]]. Furthermore, the Federation was suffering a manpower shortage after sustaining massive casualties up to that point, and many of their shipyards were still being rebuilt. The Dominion's shipyards, on the other hand, were producing at 100% capacity, and legions of Jem'Hadar were being bred at an incredible rate. Without help, it was only a matter of time until the Dominion would defeat both the Klingons and the Federation. ({{DS9|In the Pale Moonlight}})
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[[File:Klingon fleet, Sacrifice of Angels.jpg|thumb|Klingon warships in combat during [[Operation Return|''Operation Return'']]]]
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Though outnumbered two to one, [[Operation Return|Starfleet engaged the Dominion fleet]]. With the timely arrival of the Klingon forces, the Dominion lines collapsed, and the fleet dispersed. Though the [[USS Defiant (2370)|''Defiant'']] breached the lines, it was unable to prevent the destruction of the minefield. With no options remaining, Sisko took the ''Defiant'' into the wormhole, and was able to strike a bargain with the [[Prophet|Prophets]] to remove the Dominion forces to protect [[Bajor]]. 2,800 Dominion ships were destroyed in the wormhole, and with 200 Allied ships approaching [[Bajor]], the Dominion position on Deep Space 9 became untenable. The Dominion withdrew all forces to Cardassian territory, giving the Allied forces a decisive victory.
   
The Federation began growing more desperate for allies. [[Ensign]] [[Nog]], the only [[Ferengi]] in Starfleet, was dispatched to personally deliver a message to [[Grand Nagus]] [[Zek]] of the [[Ferengi Alliance]] from the [[Federation Council]], a message [[Jake Sisko]] speculated was a proposal for an alliance. Additionally, the {{USS|Enterprise|NCC-1701-E}} was ordered to welcome the [[Evora]] as a new Federation protectorate despite the Evora only developing warp drive one year earlier. The Federation Council believed that in light of their losses to the Borg and the Dominion, the Federation needed all the allies it could find.
+
[[Dukat]] suffered a mental breakdown at the defeat, along with the concurrent murder of his daughter, [[Tora Ziyal]], and was captured by the victorious Allied forces. [[Damar]] was subsequently promoted to [[Legate]], and succeeded him as leader of the [[Cardassian Union]]. ({{DS9|Sacrifice of Angels}})
   
But perhaps the most important ally it needed was the Romulan Star Empire.
+
== Lull ==
  +
Following the decisive Allied victory in recapturing Deep Space 9, the Dominion forces withdrew to Cardassian space, and major operations temporarily ceased. ({{DS9|Resurrection}}) [[Legate]] [[Damar]] extended an olive branch to the [[Federation]], hoping to negotiate a cease-fire and end the war. [[Weyoun]] proposed to redraw the [[Federation-Cardassian border]] to give disputed [[star systems]] to the side with ''de facto'' control, an arrangement which generally favoured the Federation. However, a think-tank of [[genetically engineered]] individuals led by [[Julian Bashir]] deduced that the Dominion's true goal was to obtain the [[Kabrel system]]. Though strategically unimportant, the Kabrel system would enable the Dominion to produce near-endless amounts of [[ketracel-white]].
   
== Turning of the tide ==
+
Bashir advised that the Federation accept the peace proposal; while many suspected the Dominion would renege on any agreement to buy time to re-group, the Allies were in a far greater need of a respite than the Dominion. Instead, the Federation made a counter-proposal and the talks ended inconclusively. ({{DS9|Statistical Probabilities}})
''"Think about it, they're in the perfect position. They get to sit back and watch as their biggest rivals slug it out in a long, bloody war. No ones threatening their interests. Why should they risk their necks? There's simply no reason for them to get involved in ''our'' war."'' <br />
 
:- '''[[Jadzia Dax]]''', [[In the Pale Moonlight (episode)|2374]]
 
   
The [[Romulan Star Empire]] had to this point declared itself neutral in the conflict, though they were allowing Dominion ships passage through their space. Realizing the war was lost without the assistance of the Romulan Empire, Captain Sisko undertook an act of coercion with the help of [[Elim Garak]], implicating the Dominion in an assassination plot against a high ranking [[Vreenak|Romulan senator]]. Their ploy was successful, and the Romulans joined the alliance. Within hours of joining the war against the Dominion, the Romulans attacked fifteen bases along the Cardassian-Romulan border, opening up a new front and drawing forces away from the Federation and Klingon lines. In some of their most violent engagements, the Romulans used [[Reman]] shock troops as cannon fodder. One such commander of those forces was [[Shinzon]] - who was (unknown to the Federation at the time) a clone of Captain [[Jean-Luc Picard]] - and led twelve successful engagements against the Dominion. ({{VOY|Message in a Bottle}}, {{DS9|In the Pale Moonlight}}, {{film|10}})
+
[[File:Kudaketan.jpg|thumb|[[Kudak'Etan]], one of the first [[Alpha (Jem'Hadar)|Alpha Jem'Hadar]]]]
  +
Several weeks later, Dominion activity began to increase all along the border, putting lie to hopes that the Allied recapture of Deep Space 9 would signal the end of the war. Allied losses began to mount, including the destruction of the [[USS Honshu|''Honshu'']]'' ''and the ''[[USS Cortez|Cortez]]''. ({{DS9|Waltz|Far Beyond the Stars}}) In an effort to weaken the [[Treaty of Alliance|Federation-Klingon alliance]], Dominion agents established ties with the [[Orion Syndicate]] in an unsuccessful plot to instigate a Klingon Civil War by assassinating a Klingon diplomat. ({{DS9|Honor Among Thieves}})
   
[[File:Federation Alliance fleet.jpg|thumb|The Federation Alliance takes the Chin'toka system in 2374]]
+
With the Prophets barring passage of the wormhole to ships from the Gamma Quadrant, the Dominion began breeding legions of [[Jem'Hadar]], tailoring their genetic profiles specifically for combat in the Alpha Quadrant, and pushed their shipyards to full construction capacity. ({{DS9|One Little Ship|In the Pale Moonlight|The Reckoning}}) The issue of the ketracel-white shortage crisis was eventually mitigated when the Dominion acquired new supplies manufactured by the [[Son'a]]. ({{DS9|Penumbra}}; {{film|9}})
With the Romulans now part of the [[Federation Alliance]], the Allies had the necessary resources, ships and manpower to go on the offensive. The Federation and the Klingons wished to proceed, however the Romulans were hesitant at first. The Romulans believed that an invasion of Cardassia would only result in an appalling amount of casualties. In the end, Captain Sisko managed to convince them that the only way to achieve a lasting victory against the Dominion was to invade their territory and begin destroying their shipyards and cloning facilities. The Dominion forces were spread thin after being forced to divert ships to the Romulan front. Only five squadrons of [[Jem'Hadar attack ship]]s were available to defend the [[Chin'toka system]], which became the first target attacked by a combined Federation-Klingon-Romulan invasion fleet. Without reinforcements from the Gamma Quadrant, the Cardassians resorted to deploying [[orbital weapon platform]]s, reducing the need for starships to defend the system. These weapon platforms were well armed and were nearly successful in fending off the Allied invasion fleet. However, Garak discovered a weakness that allowed the Federation to destroy the platforms' power grid. As a result, the Allied fleet emerged victorious at the [[First Battle of Chin'toka]]. Federation troops beamed down and seized control of both planets in the star system. This was the Allies first push into Cardassian territory, and was a monumental morale booster. ({{DS9|Tears of the Prophets}})
 
   
After the initial success in capturing the Chin'toka system, the invasion of Cardassia had ground to a halt. Allied casualties continued to mount while Dominion forces managed to keep the Allies bottled up in the Chin'toka system. The Dominion was pushing its shipyards beyond their limits in an attempt to construct enough warships to retake the system. At this point, the war had entered something of a stalemate. Early- to mid-2375 was spent with neither side offering a firm push forward into the other. A Klingon fleet attempted to advance against Dominion forces at [[Monac IV]], but it was repelled and suffered at least thirty percent casualties. Allied ships and ground troops in the Chin'toka system came under constant attack from Dominion warships and ground forces determined to retake their territory. ({{DS9|Image in the Sand|The Siege of AR-558}})
+
Having recovered from the loss of Deep Space 9, in late 2374, the Dominion launched [[Battle of Betazed|a surprise invasion of Betazed]] from the [[Kalandra sector]], overrunning the entire system and its outlying colonies in less than ten hours. With control of a key Federation member world, the Dominion had scored a decisive strategic success; it was now in a position to launch offensives against [[Vulcan]], [[Andoria]], [[Tellar Prime]] and [[Alpha Centauri]]. The [[Second Fleet]] launched three counter-attacks in just one month against Betazed; however all were repulsed. For the Federation Alliance, suffering from shortages of ships and manpower, defeat once again seemed only a matter of time. ({{DS9|In the Pale Moonlight}})
   
One very important event that changed the shape of the war was occurring behind the front lines: a debilitating disease was attacking the [[Founder]]s. It would later be claimed that [[Section 31]] had a hand in the infection. The Founders' abilities as leaders were being compromised just as their military was taking severe punishment from the emboldened alliance. ({{DS9|Treachery, Faith and the Great River}})
+
== The Tide Turns ==
  +
"''Think about it, they're in the perfect position. They get to sit back and watch as their biggest rivals slug it out in a long, bloody war. No one's threatening their interests. Why should they risk their necks? There's simply no reason for them to get involved in ''our'' war.''"
  +
:- '''Jadzia Dax''', [[In the Pale Moonlight (episode)|2374]]
   
Gradually, Damar began openly criticizing the war effort and deriding the Founders' leadership. Cardassia had taken heavy casualties during the war. Damar believed that there was not one Cardassian family that had not lost someone in this conflict. Dominion leaders began seeking a new ally, and in late-2375 they entered into negotiations with the [[Breen]], a mysterious but powerful race. In the ensuing months, an [[Dominion-Breen Alliance|alliance]] was formed and the Breen took more and more of the Cardassians' responsibility, their leadership, and even Cardassian territory. The tide had turned in favor of the Dominion, but Cardassians grew more restless by the day. ({{DS9|'Til Death Do Us Part}})
+
The [[Romulan Star Empire]] had hitherto remained neutral in the Dominion War, although they were turning a blind eye to Dominion warships crossing through their territory to ambush Federation convoys and shipping. [[Captain]] [[Benjamin Sisko]] reasoned that the addition of the Romulan military could prove decisive in reversing the fortunes of the Dominion. With [[Elim Garak]], and the approval of [[Starfleet Intelligence]], a covert mission was carried out to implicate the Dominion in a planned invasion of [[Romulus]], and the assassination of [[Senator]] [[Vreenak]], the most ardent pro-Dominion advocate in the [[Romulan Senate]]. From the wreckage of Vreenak's destroyed ship, the [[Tal Shiar]] recovered a recording of an alleged top-level Dominion conference bringing forward the timetabling of the invasion.
   
[[File:USS Defiant destroyed.jpg|thumb|left|The Breen crush the Allies while retaking Chin'toka]]
+
In response, the Romulan Empire officially declared war on the Dominion. Within hours, the Romulans struck fifteen bases along the Romulan-Cardassian border, opening a second front to the war. Although progress remained slow for the allies, the Romulans drove Dominion forces off of [[Benzar]] within months of joining the war effort. During this campaign, [[Shinzon|Shinzon of Remus]] distinguished himself in the [[Romulan military]], having led twelve major engagements against the Jem'Hadar, all of them successful. ({{DS9|In the Pale Moonlight|The Reckoning}}, {{film|10}})
The Breen entered the war with a shocking attack on [[Starfleet Headquarters]] itself. Most of the Breen attack force was destroyed by Starfleet forces, but not before the Breen had already inflicted a great deal of damage and casualties. The Breen considered the attack a success despite the fact that so few of their ships survived the assault. That they were willing to sacrifice so many of their ships and troops in order to strike at the very heart of the Federation proved to the allies one thing; the Breen were a race of warriors.
 
   
The Breen's second operation was a counterattack against the Allied forces in control of the Chin'toka system. The Breen broke through Federation lines in two places and the allies immediately began assembling reinforcements. A Federation Alliance assault fleet arrived at Chin'toka to fend off the advancing Dominion fleet. During this battle, the Breen unleashed their [[Energy dissipator|energy-draining weapons]] that quickly immobilized and disable the entire Allied fleet. The Federation, Klingon and Romulan ships were rendered completely defenseless against conventional weapons. The Dominion won the [[Second Battle of Chin'toka]] with ease, destroying all but one of the three hundred and twelve allied vessels, thus regaining control of the system. The Klingons by sheer luck stumbled upon a modification that made them immune to the weapon. Subsequently it was up to the Klingon fleet to hold the front lines on their own until a countermeasure could be found for Starfleet and Romulan ships. To do this, General Martok brought 1,500 starships to the border as the Allies' defense. Even with this sizable fleet, the Klingon force was outnumbered twenty-to-one by the Dominion, Breen and Cardassian forces. To compensate, Martok would have his fleet operate in small battle groups, remaining cloaked until they would engage the enemy, in an attempt to keep them off balance. ({{DS9|The Changing Face of Evil|When It Rains...}})
+
The Federation, desperate for additional support, continued to extend diplomatic ties to neighbouring species. In 2374, the [[Federation Council]] conveyed an official diplomatic message to [[Grand Nagus]] [[Zek]] of the [[Ferengi Alliance]], which [[Jake Sisko]] speculated was a proposal for opening of formal relations between the two powers. In [[2375]], the Federation accepted the [[Evora]] as a [[protectorate]], despite their having achieved warp drive only the previous year. ({{DS9|In the Pale Moonlight|Valiant}}, {{film|9}})
   
Although the war turned significantly in the Dominion's favor with the Breen's entry into the war, the Dominion's obvious favoring of the Breen finally frustrated Damar to the point that he formed an active resistance on Cardassia. A number of Cardassian officers, including Gul [[Rusot]], who shared Damar's frustration, remained loyal to him. [[Cardassian Rebellion#Military revolt|Joining his rebellion]], they attacked the [[Cloning facility|cloning facilities]] on [[Rondac III]]. Although the fleet was successful in destroying the facility, half of Damar's entire military force was destroyed in the battle. Despite this, the Dominion realized they could not hope to win the war against the allies until the internal rebellion was crushed. This gave the allies the time they needed to obtain a counter measure to the Breen's energy dissipator, although without a working version of the weapon the research proceeded slowly. ({{DS9|The Changing Face of Evil}})
+
[[File:Federation Alliance fleet.jpg|thumb|The Federation Alliance captures the Chin'toka system in 2374]]
  +
With the Romulans now fully committed to the [[Federation Alliance]], options for a general offensive into Cardassian territory became a viable possibility. The Romulans had reservations that such an attack could succeed only at horrendous cost, favouring to contain the Dominion within Cardassian space. However, [[Benjamin Sisko]] convinced the delegation that the only course to victory was to destroy the Dominion's industrial infrastructure. The Allies agreed they would commit their efforts to the [[Chin'toka system]], its defences having recently been thinned to provide additional support for the Romulan front.
   
==End of the war==
+
In late 2374, the Federation Alliance launched their [[First Battle of Chin'toka|first offensive into Cardassian space]], capturing Chin'toka after a hard fight. ({{DS9|Tears of the Prophets}}) Although the planned attack against [[Cardassia]] itself was not realised, owing to heavy losses taking Chin'toka, the successful invasion was a tremendous boost to Allied morale. The Allied hold on Chin'toka was tenuous at best; the system remained under almost constant attack, making it extremely difficult to reinforce the garrisoned forces. Further offensives were bloodily repulsed; a Klingon fleet lost thirty percent of its strength attacking [[Monac IV]]. ({{DS9|Image in the Sand|The Siege of AR-558}})
''"Legate Damar may be the key to saving the Alpha Quadrant"''<br />
 
:&ndash; '''[[Benjamin Sisko]]''', [[The Changing Face of Evil (episode)|2375]]
 
Realizing Damar's rebellion would be crushed without a necessary change in strategy and outside support, the Federation dispatched [[Kira Nerys]] (with a new commission as a Starfleet [[commander]]), [[Elim Garak]], and [[Odo]] to help train the Cardassian liberation forces in [[guerrilla]] tactics, while also providing food [[replicator]]s and weapons to sustain the rebellion. With Kira's knowledge of guerrilla warfare passed on to Damar's forces, the rebellion began destroying individual ships via [[sabotage]], and was successful in the destruction of the [[Tevak shipyards]]. ({{DS9|Tacking Into the Wind}})
 
   
[[File:Damar preaches freedom.jpg|thumb|[[Damar]] rallying support on [[Cardassia]] against the [[Dominion]] in [[2375]]]]
+
On other fronts, the Allies enjoyed greater success. [[Elim Garak]] began working for [[Starfleet]] in an unofficial capacity breaking Cardassian military codes; one such breach enabled the Alliles to retake the [[Kalandra system]] from the Dominion. ({{DS9|Afterimage|The Emperor's New Cloak}}) While the Allies consolidated their new front, [[General]] [[Martok]] launched a deep penetration raid into Cardassian space that severely damaged several key military targets. ({{DS9|Once More Unto the Breach}})
Unfortunately for the allies, [[Chancellor]] [[Gowron]] took control of the Klingon forces in an attempt to defeat the Dominion without assistance from the Federation or Romulan Empire. During his brief campaign, he ordered [[General]] [[Martok]] to engage the Dominion at Avenal Seven &ndash; a world deep inside Dominion territory. Outnumbered six-to-one, the raid on Avanal Seven was an utter failure, losing seven ships, with another five seriously damaged. It soon became clear that Gowron had come to view Martok as a political threat and by launching these raids, he hoped to have the general discredited or killed. Realizing that these useless raids could not continue, Captain Sisko ordered [[Lieutenant Commander]] [[Worf]] to "deal" with Chancellor Gowron. After killing him in battle, Worf declared Martok the new Chancellor of the [[Klingon Empire]]. ({{DS9|When It Rains...|Tacking Into the Wind}})
 
   
With the help of Odo, the Cardassian rebellion was able to capture a [[Jem'Hadar attack ship]] fitted with one of the Breen's energy dampening weapons from the [[Kelvas repair facility]]. With the weapon delivered to the Federation, a counter-measure was able to be produced for both Federation and Romulan ships, thus returning the tactical advantage into the Allies' favor. Shortly afterward however, the rebel Cardassian forces were completely wiped out by the Dominion after Gul [[Revok]] betrayed them, allowing all eighteen rebel bases to be found and destroyed.
+
In early [[2375]], the Federation learned of a development that would ultimately help determine the course of the war: a deadly [[morphogenic virus]] had infected the [[Great Link]]. Despite the Dominion's technological prowess, they were unable to find a cure, and it was determined it would only be a matter of time before the [[Founders]] would die. ({{DS9|Treachery, Faith and the Great River}}) It would be later discovered that the virus had been engineered by [[Section 31]], a rogue branch of [[Starfleet Intelligence]]. Although [[Julian Bashir]] did find a cure, the [[Federation Council]] decided to withhold it from the Dominion for strategic concerns. Some protested this act as abetting [[genocide]]. ({{DS9|Extreme Measures|The Dogs of War}})
   
After successfully destroying the rebel bases, the Dominion realized that the Federation Alliance had developed a counter measure to the Breen's weaponry. As a result, they withdrew all of their forces from Klingon, Federation and Romulan space and created a new defense perimeter within Cardassian territory. The perimeter was heavily fortified, requiring a major Allied offensive to break through and result in the loss of thousands of ships. The Dominion had hoped that the Federation would not attempt such an offensive, giving them the time they needed to rebuild a sufficient armada to destroy Allied forces. The Federation Alliance decided instead to proceed with an invasion, in spite of the heavy losses that they would suffer. A three-pronged attack into Cardassia was organized and led by [[Vice Admiral]] [[William Ross]], Captain Benjamin Sisko, Chancellor Martok, and (presumably) [[Velal]]. ({{DS9|Tacking Into the Wind|The Dogs of War}})
+
== Cardassian rebellion ==
  +
"''Legate Damar may be the key to saving the Alpha Quadrant.''"
  +
:- '''Benjamin Sisko''', [[The Changing Face of Evil (episode)|2375]]
   
A Federation Alliance invasion fleet departed Deep Space 9 and engaged a combined Jem'Hadar, Cardassian, and Breen fleet at the Dominion's new defensive perimeter. Allied losses mounted as [[Battle of Cardassia|the battle]] raged on, with the Dominion managing to destroy one third of the Allied invasion force, including the Romulan flagship. ({{DS9|What You Leave Behind}})
+
Meanwhile, the Alliance's slowly encroaching front-line had begun to seriously strain relations in the precarious Dominion-Cardassian alliance. The [[Founders]] and their [[Vorta]] underlings tended to rest blame upon the [[Cardassian military]] for the failings of the [[Jem'Hadar]] in battle, an accusation that [[Legate]] [[Damar]] found particularly galling. With Dominion xenophobia clashing with Cardassian pride, many Cardassian soldiers grew distrustful and resentful of the Dominion, while the Dominion continued to erode Cardassian autonomy.
   
Although Damar's military rebellion had been crushed, his brief but effective campaign had left quite an impression on the Cardassian people. After a raid on a Jem'Hadar barracks on Cardassia Prime in late-[[2375]], Damar was able to rally the support of the entire civilian population on Cardassia. ({{DS9|The Dogs of War}}) During the Alliance invasion, these civilians caused a planet-wide blackout, cutting off all communication from the [[Dominion Headquarters]] to their fleets in combat. In retaliation for this, the [[Female Changeling]] ordered the destruction of [[Lakarian City]] as a deterrent to further acts of rebellion. This action had the opposite effect however &ndash; when the Cardassian fleet learned about the fate of Lakarian City, it switched sides to assist the Federation Alliance and opened fire on the Jem'Hadar and Breen ships. With the Cardassian fleet turned against them, the Dominion had no choice but order a full retreat back to Cardassia Prime, where they were surrounded by the pursuing Federation, Klingon, Romulan, and Cardassian ships.
+
Seeking to rescue the war effort, in mid [[2375]], the Dominion conducted secret negotiations with the elusive [[Breen Confederacy]] to propose a military alliance; negotiations which the Cardassians were not privy to. The Dominion granted the [[Breen]] unspecified Cardassian territorial concessions in exchange, concessions which [[Legate]] [[Damar]] had neither seen nor agreed to. His objections were summarily overruled. ({{DS9|Penumbra|'Til Death Do Us Part}})
   
[[File:Female Changeling signs Treaty of Bajor.jpg|left|thumb|The Treaty of Bajor is signed, officially ending the war]]
+
Damar grew concerned with further Allied advances, specifically the garrison of the [[Eleventh Order]] on [[Septimus III]], which would fall without [[Jem'Hadar]] assistance. The Dominion refused to render aid, regarding it as an acceptable sacrifice. The Klingons subsequently invaded the planet and massacred the garrison. This action finally spurred Damar to rebel against the Dominion. ({{DS9|Strange Bedfellows|The Changing Face of Evil}})
The situation was now hopeless for the Dominion, but the Founder refused to surrender. Instead she ordered every Jem'Hadar and Breen soldier to fight to the last man. She also ordered the Jem'Hadar to begin exterminating the Cardassian population for their betrayal. Jem'Hadar troops rampaged through the streets of Cardassia Prime killing millions. Finally, members of the resistance were able to break into Dominion headquarters and capture the Founder, though she still refused to order her troops to surrender, therefore Odo beamed down to link with her. While linked, Odo cured the Founder of the virus and convinced her to order the remaining Dominion forces to stand down. She agreed to turn herself over to Federation authorities to stand trial for war crimes. In exchange, Odo would return to the [[Great Link]] and cure the rest of their people of the virus that had been crippling them. ({{DS9|What You Leave Behind}})
+
  +
[[File:USS Defiant destroyed.jpg|thumb|left|Allied ships are annihilated during the [[Second Battle of Chin'toka|Breen counter-attack on Chin'toka]]]]
  +
The [[Breen Confederacy]] entered the war in late [[2375]] with [[Breen attack on Earth|a bold raid on Starfleet Headquarters]], sending shock waves through the Alliance. Able to now mobilise a large fleet to hazard out offensive operations, the [[Dominion-Breen Alliance]] launched a [[Second Battle of Chin'toka|massive counter-attack against the Chin'toka system]]. The battle would prove to be the worst Allied defeat of the entire war; of the 312 ships engaged, all but one were destroyed. However, they could not press their advantage, as soon after, the [[Cardassian Liberation Front]] attacked the Dominion military installations on [[Rondac III]], diverting vital resources from the front. ({{DS9|The Changing Face of Evil}})
  +
  +
The only Allied warship to escape the Breen [[Energy dissipator|energy dissipators]] at Chin'toka was a Klingon warship, the ''[[Ki'tang]]'', owing to a chance modification of the ship's propulsion matrix. [[General]] [[Martok]] ordered the modifications across the entire Klingon fleet, and had 1,500 warships ready for deployment the following day. With the [[Federation]] and [[Romulan]] fleets effectively useless in the interim until a countermeasure could be developed, the Klingons were left with the daunting task of holding the front-line against the [[Dominion-Breen Alliance]]. ({{DS9|When It Rains...}})
  +
  +
However, the Allied defensive efforts were soon jeopardised by [[Chancellor]] [[Gowron]], whose political position had become threatened by [[Martok|Martok's]] popularity in the Empire. Gowron took direct command of the Klingon fleet and repeatedly ordered Martok on hopeless attacks, intending for him to be killed or disgraced. With the safety of the [[Alpha Quadrant]] at stake, [[Benjamin Sisko]] ordered [[Lieutenant Commander]] [[Worf]] to deal with Gowron. Worf directly challenged his leadership, and slew him in single combat. Worf then proclaimed [[General]] [[Martok]] as the next [[Chancellor of the Klingon High Council]]. ({{DS9|Tacking Into the Wind}})
  +
  +
[[File:Damar preaches freedom.jpg|thumb|Damar rallying the Cardassian people against the Dominion]]
  +
Meanwhile, the [[Federation Alliance]] saw a strategic opportunity in the [[Cardassian Liberation Front|Cardassian rebellion]] to keep the [[Dominion-Breen Alliance]] constantly off-balance. The Federation supplied [[replicator|replicators]], [[phaser|weapons]] and food supplies to the rebels, and dispatched [[Kira Nerys]] to train Damar's troops in guerrilla tactics. ({{DS9|When It Rains...}})
  +
  +
The Cardassian rebels began carrying out a number of sabotaging attacks on Dominion ships and military installations, and was able to deliver a functioning Breen energy-dissipator to the Allied forces. ({{DS9|Tacking Into the Wind}}) Unfortunately, however, the success of Damar's revolt was short-lived. [[Gul]] [[Revok]], a prominent soldier in the [[Cardassian Liberation Front|Liberation Front]], betrayed them to the Dominion. [[Jem'Hadar]] and [[Breen]] ships rapidly destroyed all eighteen rebel bases, ending the organised resistance against the Founders' rule. ({{DS9|The Dogs of War}})
  +
  +
==Invasion of Cardassia==
  +
Although the [[Cardassian Liberation Front|Cardassian military rebellion]] had ostensibly been crushed, [[Starfleet]] and [[Romulan]] engineers were able to develop a countermeasure to the Breen energy dissipator, thus denying the Dominion their one major tactical advantage over the Allies. Facing a renewed counter-offensive on a wide front, the Dominion-Breen forces withdrew from all conquered territories and established a fortified perimeter within Cardassian space. Their hope was that the Allies would baulk at the cost of breaching the perimeter, giving the Dominion time to rebuild.
  +
  +
While containing the Dominion within its present borders was a tempting move, the senior Allied commanders argued the Dominion could not be afforded any respite. Instead, the Allies would mobilise all their available ships to launch a single, decisive strike against the heart of Dominion power in the Alpha Quadrant: [[Cardassia]]. ({{DS9|Tacking Into the Wind|The Dogs of War}})
  +
  +
[[File:Federation Alliance fleet departs DS9.jpg|thumb|left|The Allied fleet departs Deep Space 9 to invade Cardassia]]
  +
On Cardassia itself, the remnants of the resistance had not been idle. The bold revolt, though ultimately defeated, had left a scintillating impression upon the Cardassian people. Buoyed with this knowledge, [[Damar]], [[Garak]] and [[Kira Nerys]] successfully bombed a [[Jem'Hadar]] barracks, rallying the civilian population into a popular uprising against the Dominion.
  +
  +
Meanwhile, the Allied fleet crossed into Dominion space and [[Battle of Cardassia|engaged the Dominion-Breen forces in battle]]. Concurrently, popular revolt on Cardassia sabotaged the planet's power grid, cutting off transportation and communication systems, causing a planetary blackout. The fleet defending Cardassia was completely cut off from [[Dominion Headquarters]]. In retaliation, hoping to discourage further attacks, the [[Jem'Hadar]] destroyed [[Lakarian City]], killing two million civilians. Instead, it had the opposite effect; the [[Cardassian military]] abrogated their alliance, fracturing the Dominion lines, forcing it to retreat. Infuriated, the [[Founders]] ordered the [[Jem'Hadar]] to exterminate the Cardassian population.
  +
  +
[[File:Cardassia in ruins.jpg|thumb|Cardassia Prime in ruins after the Jem'Hadar bombardment]]
  +
While the Jem'Hadar rampaged across the planet, the Dominion-Breen fleets in orbit of [[Cardassia]] were ordered to fight to the death, ensuring only a pyrrhic Allied victory. As the Allies laid siege to Cardassia, rebels breached Dominion Headquarters, capturing the Founder. [[Odo]] convinced the Founder to surrender rather than fight; in exchange he would return to and cure the [[Great Link]] of the [[morphogenic virus]]. The Founder agreed, and the Dominion forces surrendered; the first time it had ever done so in battle. ({{DS9|What You Leave Behind|}})
   
 
== Aftermath ==
 
== Aftermath ==
''"This is a moment worth savouring. To victory! Hard fought, and well earned."''<br />
+
"''This is a moment worth savoring. To victory! Hard fought, and well earned.''"<br />
''"Suddenly I'm not thirsty."''<br />
+
"''Suddenly I'm not thirsty.''"<br />
:- '''[[Martok]]''' and '''[[Benjamin Sisko]]''', [[What You Leave Behind (episode)|2375]]
+
"''Neither am I''"
  +
:- '''Martok''', '''Benjamin Sisko''' and '''William Ross''', [[What You Leave Behind (episode)|2375]]
   
The instrument of surrender, the [[Treaty of Bajor]], was signed on [[Deep Space 9]] only days after the [[Battle of Cardassia]]. Following the end of the war, the [[Dominion]] was forced back into the [[Gamma Quadrant]], the [[Cardassian Union]] was in shambles, and the [[Klingon Empire]] was estimated to be set back by at least a decade. The war also prompted a change in leadership in the [[Klingon High Council]], as [[Lieutenant Commander]] [[Worf]] killed [[Chancellor]] [[Gowron]] for squandering the Empire's resources on a political vendetta against [[General]] [[Martok]] in the final weeks of the war. Worf passed the Chancellorship onto Martok immediately after Gowron's death. ({{DS9|Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges|Tacking Into the Wind|What You Leave Behind}})
+
[[File:Female Changeling signs Treaty of Bajor.jpg|thumb|The Treaty of Bajor is signed on Deep Space 9]]
  +
The instrument of surrender, the [[Treaty of Bajor]], was signed on Deep Space 9 between representatives of the [[Federation Alliance]] and the [[Dominion-Breen Alliance]] several days after the surrender at Cardassia. The treaty stipulated the Dominion would affect a complete military withdrawal to the [[Gamma Quadrant]], while Alpha Quadrant territories were reverted to their boundaries as of [[stardate]] 50564.0, just prior to the Dominion's initial incursion into the Alpha Quadrant. ({{DS9|What You Leave Behind}})
   
Although both the [[Federation]] and the [[Romulan Empire]] suffered a heavy death toll, [[Section 31]] operative [[Luther Sloan]] speculated that these two powers would be the ones struggling for control of a post-war [[Alpha Quadrant]]. Even before the wars end, many in both the Federation and the Romulan Empire believed that their alliance was only a temporary war-time coalition. There was concern that the Romulans would not cede worlds they liberated from the Dominion, such as [[Benzar]], back to the Federation. By [[2379]], the [[Romulan Neutral Zone|Neutral Zone]] was still in effect, and serious peace talks did not begin until late that year. ({{DS9|The Reckoning|Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges}}, {{film|10}})
+
In its wake, the war completely shifted the power dynamics of the Alpha Quadrant. The [[Cardassian Union]] had all but collapsed as a major power in the quadrant; eight hundred million civilians had been killed by the Jem'Hadar in mere hours, as well as over seven million troops, severely damaging Cardassian political integrity. The [[Breen Confederacy]], a hitherto elusive race with little external contact had emerged and established themselves as a major military power.
   
[[File:Cardassia in ruins.jpg|thumb|Cardassia stands in ruins...]]
+
The [[Klingon Defense Force]], having previously suffered heavy casualties in the [[Klingon-Cardassian War]], had been set back for at least a decade. The [[Romulan Star Empire]] rescinded diplomatic ties following the war, and entered into a nascent power struggle for influence against the [[United Federation of Planets]]. This resumption of cold war would last until [[2379]], when a coup led by noted Dominion War commander [[Shinzon|Shinzon of Remus]] led to [[Battle in the Bassen Rift|a brief conflict]], and improved relations with the Romulan Empire. ({{DS9|Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges|What You Leave Behind}}; {{film|10}}){{clear}}{{Dominion War battles}}
Foremost in the aftermath, however, was the state of [[Cardassia Prime]]. Eight hundred million civilians were dead, and the entire Cardassian Union was in danger of total collapse. The Alpha Quadrant had lost a major power, and the effects on galactic politics would continue to be seen for many years to come. ({{DS9|What You Leave Behind}})
 
{{clear}}
 
{{Dominion War battles}}
 
 
{{Federation wars}}
 
{{Federation wars}}
   
 
== Appendices ==
 
== Appendices ==
=== See also ===
 
*[[Starships in the Dominion War]]
 
*[[Story arcs]]
 
 
 
=== Background information ===
 
=== Background information ===
[[Ira Steven Behr]] and [[Ronald D. Moore]] were the writers most involved with the creation and development of the Dominion War. [[Rick Berman]] wanted the war to be over within three or four episodes at the most. Behr and Moore knew the series would never be able to wrap up the war in that many episodes. Berman also criticized the "depressing" and "violent" stories. Moore later said "''It's a fuckin' war! What do you mean it's too violent?!''" [http://www.trekweb.com/stories.php?aid=3fd2828e8365a&tid=3fd297e330a24&cid=3fd39cec1a6ac]
+
[[File:Dominion War Treaty.jpg|thumb|The cease-fire treaty prop]]
  +
[[Ira Steven Behr]] and [[Ronald D. Moore]] were the writers most involved with the creation and development of the Dominion War. [[Rick Berman]] wanted the war to be over within three or four episodes at the most. Behr and Moore knew the series would never be able to wrap up the war in that many episodes. Berman also criticized the "depressing" and "violent" stories. Moore later said "''It's a f___in' war! What do you mean it's too violent?!''" {{TrekWeb.com|stories.php?aid{{=}}3fd2828e8365a&tid{{=}}3fd297e330a24&cid{{=}}3fd39cec1a6ac}}
  +
  +
[[Armin Shimerman]] had hoped to have seen the [[Ferengi]] involved more in the Dominion War arc. Shimerman commented: "''It would have been very interesting to see how people made profits off of wars, to see a black market during the war, to see how the Ferengi, who were basically neutral during the war, behaved. We did a bit of that but we didn't delve into that as much as we could have''". ("The Once and Future Ferengi: Armin Shimerman Reflects on Quark", [[Star Trek: Communicator issue 130|''Star Trek Communicator'', issue 130]])
  +
  +
[[Majel Barrett]] criticized the arc in a letter published in ''[[Star Trek Communicator]]'', claiming that [[Gene Roddenberry]] would have never approved of a continuing war in a ''Star Trek'' series. Berman has espoused similar sentiments, noting that his opposition "''was all based purely on the fact that Gene had been very specific to me about not wanting ''Star Trek'' to be a show about intergalactic wars, interspecies wars. He didn't want it to be about humans fighting wars against other species.''" {{St.com|rick-berman-looks-back-at-18-years-of-trek-part-2||article}} Responding to the former, Moore admitted, "''She's probably right. It would've been very hard to argue Gene into going this way and maybe he'd have never gone for it. However, I would've still argued for doing the Dominion War with him and if he'd rejected it, I would've thought he was wrong. I respect Gene and his work, but I don't think he was always right and I'm not going to pretend that I do. The Dominion War has been one of the better storylines we've come up with whether Gene would've agreed or not.''" {{AOLchat|Ronald D. Moore|ron129|1999}}
  +
  +
[[Bjo Trimble]] commented: "''I feel that Gene might have come to like DS9, had he lived to see it. There might have been some changes. Majel recently said that GR would have hated the war in DS9, but frankly I am amazed that she cannot see the same theme in much of what Gene did, including his recent "discovery" of ''Earth: Final Conflict''. The only reason there were not full battles in early Trek is lack of funds to pull it off, and lack of technology to show it. Otherwise, GR would certainly have added it; he knew what audiences liked. I don't know about Voyager; I can't see where it's going, and I don't feel GR would have liked that. I don't think he would have liked the last couple of movies; they were very far removed from the Trek Gene came up with''". [http://www.trekplace.com/bjotrimble.html]
   
[[Majel Barrett]] criticized the arc in a letter published in ''[[Star Trek Communicator]]'', claiming that [[Gene Roddenberry]] would have never approved of a continuing war in a ''Star Trek'' series. Berman has espoused similar sentiments, noting that his opposition "''was all based purely on the fact that Gene had been very specific to me about not wanting Star Trek to be a show about intergalactic wars, interspecies wars. He didn’t want it to be about humans fighting wars against other species.''" {{St.com|rick-berman-looks-back-at-18-years-of-trek-part-2||article}} Responding to the former, Moore admitted, "''She's probably right. It would've been very hard to argue Gene into going this way and maybe he'd have never gone for it. However, I would've still argued for doing the Dominion War with him and if he'd rejected it, I would've thought he was wrong. I respect Gene and his work, but I don't think he was always right and I'm not going to pretend that I do. The Dominion War has been one of the better storylines we've come up with whether Gene would've agreed or not.''" {{AOLchat|Ronald D. Moore|ron129|1999}}
+
The Dominion War was directly referred to on three occasions outside of ''Deep Space Nine'': {{VOY|Message in a Bottle}}, {{film|9}}, and {{film|10}}.
   
 
===Apocrypha===
 
===Apocrypha===
In [[Rising Son]], it is revealed that the inhabitants of the Gamma Quadrant refer to the war as the "Quadrant War".
+
In ''[[Rising Son]]'', it is revealed that the inhabitants of the Gamma Quadrant refer to the war as the "Quadrant War".
   
 
The war is frequently mentioned in [[Pocket Books]] novels and reference books, and there is also a section on it in the ''[[Star Trek: Star Charts]]''.
 
The war is frequently mentioned in [[Pocket Books]] novels and reference books, and there is also a section on it in the ''[[Star Trek: Star Charts]]''.
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==== Video games ====
 
==== Video games ====
 
* ''[[Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - Dominion Wars]]''
 
* ''[[Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - Dominion Wars]]''
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=== See also ===
  +
*[[Starships in the Dominion War]]
  +
*[[Story arcs]]
   
 
=== External links ===
 
=== External links ===
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* {{mbeta}}
 
* {{Wikipedia}}
 
* {{Wikipedia}}
* {{NCwiki}}
 
* {{brokenlink|url=http://www.startrek.com/startrek/page/redirect/external?id=5519|text=Dominion War Timeline}}
 
 
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Latest revision as of 01:32, April 13, 2016

Dominion War
USS Sitak and USS Majestic hit.jpg

USS Sitak (bottom left) is destroyed and USS Majestic (upper right) is badly damaged during Operation Return

USS Sitak (bottom left) is destroyed and USS Majestic (upper right) is badly damaged during Operation Return
Date: 23732375
Location: Alpha Quadrant
Result: Federation Alliance victory
Treaty of Bajor

Collapse of the Cardassian Union

Permanent withdrawal of Dominion forces to the Gamma Quadrant

Resumption of Federation-Romulan Cold War
Belligerents
Federation Alliance
Federation
Klingon Empire
Romulan Star Empire (2374)
Bajor (2374)
Cardassian Liberation Front (2375)
Cardassian Union (2375)
Dominion-Breen Alliance:

The Dominion

Cardassian Union (2373-2375)
Breen Confederacy (2375)
Son'a

Notable commanders
William Ross
Benjamin Sisko
Martok
Gowron
Neral
Kimara Cretak
Letant
Velal
Shinzon of Remus
Shakaar Edon
Kira Nerys
Damar
The Founders
Weyoun
Dukat
Damar† (rebelled)
Broca
Gor
Pran
Strength
Thousands of ships Thousands of ships
Casualties and losses
Extremely heavy Cardassian:
7 million troops killed
800 million civilians killed

Unknown Jem'Hadar and Breen losses, though likely very heavy
Federation Alliance Dominion-Breen Alliance
United Federation of Planets logo
Dominion logo
Klingon Empire logo
Cardassian Union logo
Romulan Star Empire logo
Breen Confederacy logo
"The Alpha Quadrant seems wracked with chaos – it could use some order...."
"Imposing your type of 'order' on the Alpha Quadrant...may prove more difficult than you imagine."
– The Female Changeling and Odo, 2371 ("The Search, Part II")

The Dominion War was a major interstellar conflict, fought from 2373 to 2375, though related conflicts began earlier. The war involved all major powers of the Alpha and Gamma Quadrants, formed into two opposing military alliances; the Federation Alliance and the Dominion-Breen Alliance. Marked by massive civilian casualties, including the Jem'Hadar bombardment of Cardassia (in which approximately 800 million Cardassians were killed), and the mobilisation of military fleets on a scale never seen prior, it was one of the bloodiest and most destructive wars in galactic history.

After a series of calculated steps to destabilise the political landscape of the Alpha Quadrant, the Dominion launched an attack on Deep Space 9 after the Federation provocatively mined the Bajoran wormhole. After a sluggish start, the Dominion rapidly conquered vast swathes of Federation and Klingon territory. In mid-2374, Allied forces recaptured Deep Space 9, though the Dominion soon recovered, conquering Betazed.

After the death of Senator Vreenak, the Romulan Star Empire declared war on the Dominion in late 2374. Allied forces launched a joint invasion of Cardassian space late in the year. Requiring additional manpower, the Dominion signed a treaty with the Breen Confederacy, and, with their aid, launched a raid on Earth, and recaptured the Chin'toka system.

Political instabilities within the precarious Dominion alliance triggered a major rebellion by Cardassian military forces, rendering the Dominion position untenable. As the Dominion-Breen Alliance began to unravel, the Allies launched a massive invasion of Cardassian space in late 2375, sealing the final defeat of the Dominion.

The Treaty of Bajor formally ended the fighting in late 2375.

Prelude Edit

Main article: Dominion Cold War

Following initial Alpha Quadrant expeditions into the Gamma Quadrant, rumours began to filter through of a ruthless race of conquerors known only as "The Dominion". In 2370, first contact was officially made between the Federation and the Dominion, when the Jem'Hadar destroyed the Starfleet vessel Odyssey. A state of cold war rapidly developed thereafter between several of the Alpha Quadrant's major powers and the Dominion. A Dominion invasion was widely regarded as inevitable, as the Founders were driven by a xenophobic need to exert absolute authority over all other civilisations. (DS9: "The Search, Part II")

The Dominion began to infiltrate the Alpha Quadrant with changelings masquerading as important officials, in an attempt to destabilise the fragile political landscape between the major powers. By manipulating a plan originating with Enabran Tain, the Dominion destroyed the Obsidian Order and nearly crippled the Tal Shiar at the Battle of the Omarion Nebula in 2371. The subsequent power vacuum left in the absence of the Obsidian Order led to a coup on Cardassia, resulting in the overthrow of the Cardassian Central Command by the Detapa Council.

By manipulating frustrated warrior sentiments in the Klingon Empire, and implanting false information that the Cardassian coup had been engineered by the Founders, the Dominion was able to trigger the Klingon-Cardassian War. The Federation condemned the Klingon invasion, leading to a severe deterioration of relations between the two powers, ultimately concluding with the Federation-Klingon War.

Concurrently, the Dominion was almost able to instigate a war between the Federation and the Tzenkethi, and caused mass hysteria on Earth following the bombing of a conference. (DS9: "The Die is Cast", "The Adversary", "The Way of the Warrior", "Apocalypse Rising", "Homefront")

Dominion invasion

The Dominion invades the Alpha Quadrant

The Klingon invasion of Cardassia had all but destroyed Cardassian infrastructure. In mid-2373, frustrated at the apparent cowardice of the Detapa Council, and the broken state of the Cardassian people, Gul Dukat negotiated the entry of the Cardassian Union into the Dominion. Dukat himself was placed as head of the constituent Cardassian state. The Dominion rapidly began fortifying Cardassia with heavily armed convoys on a weekly basis. Within three days of their arrival, the Jem'Hadar had expelled the Klingons from Cardassian space entirely, and completely annihilated the Maquis in the Demilitarized Zone. In the face of the new Dominion foothold in the Alpha Quadrant, the Federation and the Klingons renewed the Khitomer Accords. (DS9: "By Inferno's Light", "Blaze of Glory") It can be argued that the Dominion specifically manipulated events so that Cardassia would be substantially weakened and thereby made an easy target for the Dominion's political advances as it was a Changeling in disguise who instigated the Klingon invasion of Cardassia which destroyed the Cardassian Union's home planet and infrastructure and thereby made them vulnerable to manipulation. It should be noted that the Dominion had no real interest in helping Cardassia, but rather, saw the Cardassian people as a tool, a means to an end in order to facilitate their invasion into the Alpha Quadrant.

Although open war did not begin immediately, violence along the Cardassian border escalated, with ships such as the Tian An Men and the B'Moth being reported missing, likely destroyed. The Dominion began making strategic political inroads in the Alpha Quadrant, signing non-aggression pacts with the Tholian Assembly, the Miradorn, Bajor, and, perhaps most significantly, the Romulan Star Empire. With five large convoys having entered the Alpha Quadrant unopposed, the Federation Alliance realised they would soon face an impossible strategic position.

In late 2373, the Federation decided to mine the entrance to the Bajoran wormhole with self-replicating mines, in a last-ditch effort to permanently stop the flow of Dominion reinforcements into the Alpha Quadrant. Both sides knew that this act would lead to open war. (DS9: "Soldiers of the Empire", "In the Cards", "Call to Arms")

Open war begins Edit

Dominion fires

The first shots of the Dominion War, fired on Deep Space 9

"We're losing the peace, which means a war could be our only hope."

- Benjamin Sisko, 2373
Intent on preventing the Federation from completing the minefield, Weyoun arrived on Deep Space 9 and delivered an ultimatum; either Sisko would remove the mines, or the Dominion would. Sisko refused the ultimatum, and, two days later, a large Dominion fleet attacked and captured Deep Space 9. Trusting that the minefield would be activated in time, the Federation Alliance opted not to reinforce the station, but used the opportunity to take advantage of the diverted Dominion ships to destroy the Dominion shipyards at Torros III. Though the minefield was successfully activated, the Allies was forced to retreat from the Bajoran system, and the station was subsequently garrisoned by Dominion forces. (DS9: "Call to Arms", "Behind the Lines")
Dukat and weyoun

Dukat and Weyoun confer over Dominion strategy

Over the following months, Allied forces were forced to retreat on all fronts in the wake of several decisively successful Dominion campaigns. At each instance, the Allies suffered catastrophic losses. During this campaign, Starfleet suffered one of its worst defeats of the war when the Seventh Fleet was dispatched to halt the Dominion's blitzkrieg advance at the Tyra system. In the subsequent battle, 98 starships were destroyed out of a fleet of 112, leaving thousands dead. Morale among the forces of the Federation Alliance plummeted, and it became a question of when, not if, the Alliance would be defeated. (DS9: "A Time to Stand")

While the Allies suffered repeated defeats in large fleet actions, Starfleet and Klingon ships had greater success in raiding operations and in combating small patrols of Jem'Hadar ships. Such operations included the destruction of the Dominion's primary ketracel-white storage facility in the Alpha Quadrant, and the destruction of a massive Dominion sensor array in the Argolis Cluster. The Dominion began suffering a shortage of ketracel-white, greatly concerning the Cardassians in particular. Glinn Damar even proposed that the last rations of white be poisoned if new supplies could not be secured, preventing the Jem'Hadar from running amok.

Nevertheless, the Dominion continued to conquer large swathes of Federation and Klingon territory, even approaching the Vulcan and Bolian systems. On Deep Space 9, efforts to dismantle the minefield surrounding the wormhole were finally beginning to bear fruit. Although Allied forces scored several minor successes in single-ship duels and in small groups, the inexorable Dominion advance compelled them to continually retreat. Morale sunk lower, with even the Klingons doubting they could defeat the Dominion. (DS9: "Behind the Lines", "Favor the Bold")

Counter-offensive Edit

"Earth isn't the key to the Alpha Quadrant, the wormhole is, and, whoever controls Deep Space Nine, controls the wormhole."

- Benjamin Sisko, 2374

By the latter half of 2374, the Allies were perilously close to defeat. A major victory was needed, if anything to boost morale. Captain Benjamin Sisko, knowing the Dominion would likely figure out how to disable the minefield, proposed to Starfleet Command the Federation Alliance had to go on the offensive. Sisko's plan was to assemble a task force to recapture Deep Space 9, the most strategically important site in the Alpha Quadrant, at the mouth of the wormhole. Despite misgivings that it would leave Earth vulnerable, Starfleet approved the plan.

The Klingons proved more difficult to convince; Chancellor Gowron held the same concerns as Starfleet, in committing as many ships as would be required to re-take Deep Space 9, it would leave the Empire vulnerable. While General Martok and Lieutenant Commander Worf made Starfleet's plea to Gowron in person, Federation forces began assembling at Starbase 375. Unfortunately, Starfleet soon received intelligence from active resistance members on Deep Space 9 that the minefield was only three days from being destroyed.

With no word having arrived from the Klingons, and only two-thirds of the Starfleet force assembled, Vice Admiral William Ross authorised Benjamin Sisko to lead the 627 ships assembled in an effort to prevent the Dominion from removing the mines. In response, Dukat pulled 1,254 warships from the front lines to intercept the Federation fleet, stalling Dominion advances into Allied territory. (DS9: "Favor the Bold")

Klingon fleet, Sacrifice of Angels

Klingon warships in combat during Operation Return

Though outnumbered two to one, Starfleet engaged the Dominion fleet. With the timely arrival of the Klingon forces, the Dominion lines collapsed, and the fleet dispersed. Though the Defiant breached the lines, it was unable to prevent the destruction of the minefield. With no options remaining, Sisko took the Defiant into the wormhole, and was able to strike a bargain with the Prophets to remove the Dominion forces to protect Bajor. 2,800 Dominion ships were destroyed in the wormhole, and with 200 Allied ships approaching Bajor, the Dominion position on Deep Space 9 became untenable. The Dominion withdrew all forces to Cardassian territory, giving the Allied forces a decisive victory.

Dukat suffered a mental breakdown at the defeat, along with the concurrent murder of his daughter, Tora Ziyal, and was captured by the victorious Allied forces. Damar was subsequently promoted to Legate, and succeeded him as leader of the Cardassian Union. (DS9: "Sacrifice of Angels")

Lull Edit

Following the decisive Allied victory in recapturing Deep Space 9, the Dominion forces withdrew to Cardassian space, and major operations temporarily ceased. (DS9: "Resurrection") Legate Damar extended an olive branch to the Federation, hoping to negotiate a cease-fire and end the war. Weyoun proposed to redraw the Federation-Cardassian border to give disputed star systems to the side with de facto control, an arrangement which generally favoured the Federation. However, a think-tank of genetically engineered individuals led by Julian Bashir deduced that the Dominion's true goal was to obtain the Kabrel system. Though strategically unimportant, the Kabrel system would enable the Dominion to produce near-endless amounts of ketracel-white.

Bashir advised that the Federation accept the peace proposal; while many suspected the Dominion would renege on any agreement to buy time to re-group, the Allies were in a far greater need of a respite than the Dominion. Instead, the Federation made a counter-proposal and the talks ended inconclusively. (DS9: "Statistical Probabilities")

Kudaketan

Kudak'Etan, one of the first Alpha Jem'Hadar

Several weeks later, Dominion activity began to increase all along the border, putting lie to hopes that the Allied recapture of Deep Space 9 would signal the end of the war. Allied losses began to mount, including the destruction of the Honshu and the Cortez. (DS9: "Waltz", "Far Beyond the Stars") In an effort to weaken the Federation-Klingon alliance, Dominion agents established ties with the Orion Syndicate in an unsuccessful plot to instigate a Klingon Civil War by assassinating a Klingon diplomat. (DS9: "Honor Among Thieves")

With the Prophets barring passage of the wormhole to ships from the Gamma Quadrant, the Dominion began breeding legions of Jem'Hadar, tailoring their genetic profiles specifically for combat in the Alpha Quadrant, and pushed their shipyards to full construction capacity. (DS9: "One Little Ship", "In the Pale Moonlight", "The Reckoning") The issue of the ketracel-white shortage crisis was eventually mitigated when the Dominion acquired new supplies manufactured by the Son'a. (DS9: "Penumbra"; Star Trek: Insurrection)

Having recovered from the loss of Deep Space 9, in late 2374, the Dominion launched a surprise invasion of Betazed from the Kalandra sector, overrunning the entire system and its outlying colonies in less than ten hours. With control of a key Federation member world, the Dominion had scored a decisive strategic success; it was now in a position to launch offensives against Vulcan, Andoria, Tellar Prime and Alpha Centauri. The Second Fleet launched three counter-attacks in just one month against Betazed; however all were repulsed. For the Federation Alliance, suffering from shortages of ships and manpower, defeat once again seemed only a matter of time. (DS9: "In the Pale Moonlight")

The Tide Turns Edit

"Think about it, they're in the perfect position. They get to sit back and watch as their biggest rivals slug it out in a long, bloody war. No one's threatening their interests. Why should they risk their necks? There's simply no reason for them to get involved in our war."

- Jadzia Dax, 2374

The Romulan Star Empire had hitherto remained neutral in the Dominion War, although they were turning a blind eye to Dominion warships crossing through their territory to ambush Federation convoys and shipping. Captain Benjamin Sisko reasoned that the addition of the Romulan military could prove decisive in reversing the fortunes of the Dominion. With Elim Garak, and the approval of Starfleet Intelligence, a covert mission was carried out to implicate the Dominion in a planned invasion of Romulus, and the assassination of Senator Vreenak, the most ardent pro-Dominion advocate in the Romulan Senate. From the wreckage of Vreenak's destroyed ship, the Tal Shiar recovered a recording of an alleged top-level Dominion conference bringing forward the timetabling of the invasion.

In response, the Romulan Empire officially declared war on the Dominion. Within hours, the Romulans struck fifteen bases along the Romulan-Cardassian border, opening a second front to the war. Although progress remained slow for the allies, the Romulans drove Dominion forces off of Benzar within months of joining the war effort. During this campaign, Shinzon of Remus distinguished himself in the Romulan military, having led twelve major engagements against the Jem'Hadar, all of them successful. (DS9: "In the Pale Moonlight", "The Reckoning", Star Trek Nemesis)

The Federation, desperate for additional support, continued to extend diplomatic ties to neighbouring species. In 2374, the Federation Council conveyed an official diplomatic message to Grand Nagus Zek of the Ferengi Alliance, which Jake Sisko speculated was a proposal for opening of formal relations between the two powers. In 2375, the Federation accepted the Evora as a protectorate, despite their having achieved warp drive only the previous year. (DS9: "In the Pale Moonlight", "Valiant", Star Trek: Insurrection)

Federation Alliance fleet

The Federation Alliance captures the Chin'toka system in 2374

With the Romulans now fully committed to the Federation Alliance, options for a general offensive into Cardassian territory became a viable possibility. The Romulans had reservations that such an attack could succeed only at horrendous cost, favouring to contain the Dominion within Cardassian space. However, Benjamin Sisko convinced the delegation that the only course to victory was to destroy the Dominion's industrial infrastructure. The Allies agreed they would commit their efforts to the Chin'toka system, its defences having recently been thinned to provide additional support for the Romulan front.

In late 2374, the Federation Alliance launched their first offensive into Cardassian space, capturing Chin'toka after a hard fight. (DS9: "Tears of the Prophets") Although the planned attack against Cardassia itself was not realised, owing to heavy losses taking Chin'toka, the successful invasion was a tremendous boost to Allied morale. The Allied hold on Chin'toka was tenuous at best; the system remained under almost constant attack, making it extremely difficult to reinforce the garrisoned forces. Further offensives were bloodily repulsed; a Klingon fleet lost thirty percent of its strength attacking Monac IV. (DS9: "Image in the Sand", "The Siege of AR-558")

On other fronts, the Allies enjoyed greater success. Elim Garak began working for Starfleet in an unofficial capacity breaking Cardassian military codes; one such breach enabled the Alliles to retake the Kalandra system from the Dominion. (DS9: "Afterimage", "The Emperor's New Cloak") While the Allies consolidated their new front, General Martok launched a deep penetration raid into Cardassian space that severely damaged several key military targets. (DS9: "Once More Unto the Breach")

In early 2375, the Federation learned of a development that would ultimately help determine the course of the war: a deadly morphogenic virus had infected the Great Link. Despite the Dominion's technological prowess, they were unable to find a cure, and it was determined it would only be a matter of time before the Founders would die. (DS9: "Treachery, Faith and the Great River") It would be later discovered that the virus had been engineered by Section 31, a rogue branch of Starfleet Intelligence. Although Julian Bashir did find a cure, the Federation Council decided to withhold it from the Dominion for strategic concerns. Some protested this act as abetting genocide. (DS9: "Extreme Measures", "The Dogs of War")

Cardassian rebellion Edit

"Legate Damar may be the key to saving the Alpha Quadrant."

- Benjamin Sisko, 2375

Meanwhile, the Alliance's slowly encroaching front-line had begun to seriously strain relations in the precarious Dominion-Cardassian alliance. The Founders and their Vorta underlings tended to rest blame upon the Cardassian military for the failings of the Jem'Hadar in battle, an accusation that Legate Damar found particularly galling. With Dominion xenophobia clashing with Cardassian pride, many Cardassian soldiers grew distrustful and resentful of the Dominion, while the Dominion continued to erode Cardassian autonomy.

Seeking to rescue the war effort, in mid 2375, the Dominion conducted secret negotiations with the elusive Breen Confederacy to propose a military alliance; negotiations which the Cardassians were not privy to. The Dominion granted the Breen unspecified Cardassian territorial concessions in exchange, concessions which Legate Damar had neither seen nor agreed to. His objections were summarily overruled. (DS9: "Penumbra", "'Til Death Do Us Part")

Damar grew concerned with further Allied advances, specifically the garrison of the Eleventh Order on Septimus III, which would fall without Jem'Hadar assistance. The Dominion refused to render aid, regarding it as an acceptable sacrifice. The Klingons subsequently invaded the planet and massacred the garrison. This action finally spurred Damar to rebel against the Dominion. (DS9: "Strange Bedfellows", "The Changing Face of Evil")

USS Defiant destroyed

Allied ships are annihilated during the Breen counter-attack on Chin'toka

The Breen Confederacy entered the war in late 2375 with a bold raid on Starfleet Headquarters, sending shock waves through the Alliance. Able to now mobilise a large fleet to hazard out offensive operations, the Dominion-Breen Alliance launched a massive counter-attack against the Chin'toka system. The battle would prove to be the worst Allied defeat of the entire war; of the 312 ships engaged, all but one were destroyed. However, they could not press their advantage, as soon after, the Cardassian Liberation Front attacked the Dominion military installations on Rondac III, diverting vital resources from the front. (DS9: "The Changing Face of Evil")

The only Allied warship to escape the Breen energy dissipators at Chin'toka was a Klingon warship, the Ki'tang, owing to a chance modification of the ship's propulsion matrix. General Martok ordered the modifications across the entire Klingon fleet, and had 1,500 warships ready for deployment the following day. With the Federation and Romulan fleets effectively useless in the interim until a countermeasure could be developed, the Klingons were left with the daunting task of holding the front-line against the Dominion-Breen Alliance. (DS9: "When It Rains...")

However, the Allied defensive efforts were soon jeopardised by Chancellor Gowron, whose political position had become threatened by Martok's popularity in the Empire. Gowron took direct command of the Klingon fleet and repeatedly ordered Martok on hopeless attacks, intending for him to be killed or disgraced. With the safety of the Alpha Quadrant at stake, Benjamin Sisko ordered Lieutenant Commander Worf to deal with Gowron. Worf directly challenged his leadership, and slew him in single combat. Worf then proclaimed General Martok as the next Chancellor of the Klingon High Council. (DS9: "Tacking Into the Wind")

Damar preaches freedom

Damar rallying the Cardassian people against the Dominion

Meanwhile, the Federation Alliance saw a strategic opportunity in the Cardassian rebellion to keep the Dominion-Breen Alliance constantly off-balance. The Federation supplied replicators, weapons and food supplies to the rebels, and dispatched Kira Nerys to train Damar's troops in guerrilla tactics. (DS9: "When It Rains...")

The Cardassian rebels began carrying out a number of sabotaging attacks on Dominion ships and military installations, and was able to deliver a functioning Breen energy-dissipator to the Allied forces. (DS9: "Tacking Into the Wind") Unfortunately, however, the success of Damar's revolt was short-lived. Gul Revok, a prominent soldier in the Liberation Front, betrayed them to the Dominion. Jem'Hadar and Breen ships rapidly destroyed all eighteen rebel bases, ending the organised resistance against the Founders' rule. (DS9: "The Dogs of War")

Invasion of CardassiaEdit

Although the Cardassian military rebellion had ostensibly been crushed, Starfleet and Romulan engineers were able to develop a countermeasure to the Breen energy dissipator, thus denying the Dominion their one major tactical advantage over the Allies. Facing a renewed counter-offensive on a wide front, the Dominion-Breen forces withdrew from all conquered territories and established a fortified perimeter within Cardassian space. Their hope was that the Allies would baulk at the cost of breaching the perimeter, giving the Dominion time to rebuild.

While containing the Dominion within its present borders was a tempting move, the senior Allied commanders argued the Dominion could not be afforded any respite. Instead, the Allies would mobilise all their available ships to launch a single, decisive strike against the heart of Dominion power in the Alpha Quadrant: Cardassia. (DS9: "Tacking Into the Wind", "The Dogs of War")

Federation Alliance fleet departs DS9

The Allied fleet departs Deep Space 9 to invade Cardassia

On Cardassia itself, the remnants of the resistance had not been idle. The bold revolt, though ultimately defeated, had left a scintillating impression upon the Cardassian people. Buoyed with this knowledge, Damar, Garak and Kira Nerys successfully bombed a Jem'Hadar barracks, rallying the civilian population into a popular uprising against the Dominion.

Meanwhile, the Allied fleet crossed into Dominion space and engaged the Dominion-Breen forces in battle. Concurrently, popular revolt on Cardassia sabotaged the planet's power grid, cutting off transportation and communication systems, causing a planetary blackout. The fleet defending Cardassia was completely cut off from Dominion Headquarters. In retaliation, hoping to discourage further attacks, the Jem'Hadar destroyed Lakarian City, killing two million civilians. Instead, it had the opposite effect; the Cardassian military abrogated their alliance, fracturing the Dominion lines, forcing it to retreat. Infuriated, the Founders ordered the Jem'Hadar to exterminate the Cardassian population.

Cardassia in ruins

Cardassia Prime in ruins after the Jem'Hadar bombardment

While the Jem'Hadar rampaged across the planet, the Dominion-Breen fleets in orbit of Cardassia were ordered to fight to the death, ensuring only a pyrrhic Allied victory. As the Allies laid siege to Cardassia, rebels breached Dominion Headquarters, capturing the Founder. Odo convinced the Founder to surrender rather than fight; in exchange he would return to and cure the Great Link of the morphogenic virus. The Founder agreed, and the Dominion forces surrendered; the first time it had ever done so in battle. (DS9: "What You Leave Behind")

Aftermath Edit

"This is a moment worth savoring. To victory! Hard fought, and well earned."
"Suddenly I'm not thirsty."
"Neither am I"

- Martok, Benjamin Sisko and William Ross, 2375
Female Changeling signs Treaty of Bajor

The Treaty of Bajor is signed on Deep Space 9

The instrument of surrender, the Treaty of Bajor, was signed on Deep Space 9 between representatives of the Federation Alliance and the Dominion-Breen Alliance several days after the surrender at Cardassia. The treaty stipulated the Dominion would affect a complete military withdrawal to the Gamma Quadrant, while Alpha Quadrant territories were reverted to their boundaries as of stardate 50564.0, just prior to the Dominion's initial incursion into the Alpha Quadrant. (DS9: "What You Leave Behind")

In its wake, the war completely shifted the power dynamics of the Alpha Quadrant. The Cardassian Union had all but collapsed as a major power in the quadrant; eight hundred million civilians had been killed by the Jem'Hadar in mere hours, as well as over seven million troops, severely damaging Cardassian political integrity. The Breen Confederacy, a hitherto elusive race with little external contact had emerged and established themselves as a major military power.

The Klingon Defense Force, having previously suffered heavy casualties in the Klingon-Cardassian War, had been set back for at least a decade. The Romulan Star Empire rescinded diplomatic ties following the war, and entered into a nascent power struggle for influence against the United Federation of Planets. This resumption of cold war would last until 2379, when a coup led by noted Dominion War commander Shinzon of Remus led to a brief conflict, and improved relations with the Romulan Empire. (DS9: "Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges", "What You Leave Behind"; Star Trek Nemesis)

Appendices Edit

Background information Edit

Dominion War Treaty

The cease-fire treaty prop

Ira Steven Behr and Ronald D. Moore were the writers most involved with the creation and development of the Dominion War. Rick Berman wanted the war to be over within three or four episodes at the most. Behr and Moore knew the series would never be able to wrap up the war in that many episodes. Berman also criticized the "depressing" and "violent" stories. Moore later said "It's a f___in' war! What do you mean it's too violent?!" [X]wbm

Armin Shimerman had hoped to have seen the Ferengi involved more in the Dominion War arc. Shimerman commented: "It would have been very interesting to see how people made profits off of wars, to see a black market during the war, to see how the Ferengi, who were basically neutral during the war, behaved. We did a bit of that but we didn't delve into that as much as we could have". ("The Once and Future Ferengi: Armin Shimerman Reflects on Quark", Star Trek Communicator, issue 130)

Majel Barrett criticized the arc in a letter published in Star Trek Communicator, claiming that Gene Roddenberry would have never approved of a continuing war in a Star Trek series. Berman has espoused similar sentiments, noting that his opposition "was all based purely on the fact that Gene had been very specific to me about not wanting Star Trek to be a show about intergalactic wars, interspecies wars. He didn't want it to be about humans fighting wars against other species." [1] Responding to the former, Moore admitted, "She's probably right. It would've been very hard to argue Gene into going this way and maybe he'd have never gone for it. However, I would've still argued for doing the Dominion War with him and if he'd rejected it, I would've thought he was wrong. I respect Gene and his work, but I don't think he was always right and I'm not going to pretend that I do. The Dominion War has been one of the better storylines we've come up with whether Gene would've agreed or not." (AOL chat, 1999)

Bjo Trimble commented: "I feel that Gene might have come to like DS9, had he lived to see it. There might have been some changes. Majel recently said that GR would have hated the war in DS9, but frankly I am amazed that she cannot see the same theme in much of what Gene did, including his recent "discovery" of Earth: Final Conflict. The only reason there were not full battles in early Trek is lack of funds to pull it off, and lack of technology to show it. Otherwise, GR would certainly have added it; he knew what audiences liked. I don't know about Voyager; I can't see where it's going, and I don't feel GR would have liked that. I don't think he would have liked the last couple of movies; they were very far removed from the Trek Gene came up with". [2]

The Dominion War was directly referred to on three occasions outside of Deep Space Nine: VOY: "Message in a Bottle", Star Trek: Insurrection, and Star Trek Nemesis.

ApocryphaEdit

In Rising Son, it is revealed that the inhabitants of the Gamma Quadrant refer to the war as the "Quadrant War".

The war is frequently mentioned in Pocket Books novels and reference books, and there is also a section on it in the Star Trek: Star Charts.

Novels Edit

Video games Edit

See also Edit

External links Edit

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