Star Trek Universe question

Discussion in 'Entertainment and Movie Talk' started by Wes R, Feb 28, 2012.

  1. Wes R

    Wes R Legendary Member

    Trophy Points:
    Okay it's common knowledge that there was a nuclear war before the Vulcans arrived in First Contact but anyone else think the planet looks awfully good for a war the scale they mention? I mean if all those cities got nuked there'd still be a crap load of stuff in the air and the plants would suffer but they find a thriving community in the middle of a lush forest and with clear blue skies.
  2. firesprite

    firesprite Master Member

    Trophy Points:
    WWIII had broken out in 2026, about 40 years before Vulcan-Human first contact. Zephram Cochran had his Phoenix project set up in Bozeman, MT which was unlikely to have been a direct target for nuclear bombardment.

    Clearly, the technology level was far above what we have right now so it's possible that there were advancements made that helped clean up the atmosphere and the outlying areas to reduce nuclear fallout once the fighting stopped.
  3. Wes R

    Wes R Legendary Member

    Trophy Points:
    True. It must have been bad because I know in Shatner's books Kirk's uncle had a shelter built under his house for it. Did they ever say if WW3 was related to Khan's eugenics war? I only managed to read the first part of that book trilogy as i couldn't find the rest at the library.
  4. Alan Castillo

    Alan Castillo Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    The nuclear war / WWIII was in fact a result of the problems relating to the eugenics wars. This info was revealed in some episode of Voyager or Enterprise if I am not mistaken.
  5. Alan Castillo

    Alan Castillo Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    Hopped over to the wiki site. Here ya go :) :thumbsup

    "Rising from the ashes of the Eugenics Wars of the mid-1990s, the era of World War III was a period of global conflict on Earth that eventually escalated into a nuclear cataclysm and genocidal war over issues including genetic manipulation and Human genome enhancement. World War III itself ultimately lasted from 2026 through 2053, and resulted in the death of some 600 million Humans. By that time, many of the planet's major cities and governments had been destroyed. (ENT: "In a Mirror, Darkly, Part II"; Star Trek: First Contact; VOY: "In the Flesh") "
  6. Wes R

    Wes R Legendary Member

    Trophy Points:
    I know i really liked the eugenics war book and on top of it all it has Gary Seven in it so you can't go wrong lol. Actually they could have hit the cities with small nukes or even neutron weapons so that only living things would die before the radiation died down. Edit: that is one heck of a long war to take 27 years. Guess nukes weren't the main weapons.
  7. Kennyd

    Kennyd Well-Known Member

    Trophy Points:
    I always assumed it was more of a conventional war with relatively few nuclear strikes. San Francisco & Paris would have been on the hit list for an all out type of third world war.
  8. darthgordon

    darthgordon Sr Member

    Trophy Points:
    The information on WWIII in the Star Trek Universe is a little sketch and the dates don't always seem to match up. The reason is probably just due to the constant change in actual dates that come to pass. I'm not sure one can really consider the date 2026 to be the actual start of the official war. It could simply be the time at which tensions began to escalate towards war. The best information on dates is that ended around 2053.

    It can also be confusing, that Spock mentions the last of our so called World Wars when discussing the Eugenics Wars. Spock later mentions WWIII taking place around 2026.

    Anyway... I think that's why they chose Montana as the setting for First Contact. There's been a great deal of nuclear proliferation in the last 30 years and this may continue for another 30 years in some form or another. Montana has a lot of decommissioned missile sites, and wouldn't be a large target like Washington or New York (assuming the factions do their homework and aren't relying on Cold War targets).

    For years, countries like the US and USSR conducted above ground nuclear testing at various sites. This didn't result in the entire world looking like a nuclear wasteland. It did however result in nuclear fallout being detected even decades later across those countries. They've even gone as far as to detonate a hydrogen bomb off of Johnston Island in the '60s. And I can assure you, Johnston Island was no wasteland.

    Nuclear winters are still largely theoretical and no one knows what the scope of one would be. While one group of scientists say that they may be short lived if at all, the others say they could last decades. Similar theories had been made when detonating the first H-bomb... that it could ignite the entire atmosphere- worldwide, in a chain reaction.

    Based on what we see in the court room in Encounter at Farpoint, other parts of the world did not fare as well as Montana... even as far ahead as 2079.

    Besides... Chernobyl never stopped looking lush and green either.

    One thing is for certain- at the end of WWIII, humanity was in a new dark age.
  9. cayman shen

    cayman shen Master Member

    Trophy Points:
    Ever been to that part of Montana? Lovely, but I'd imagine it would still look pretty good after a war. There's not much there to bomb. Still, nuclear winter and all that...
  10. jcoffman99

    jcoffman99 Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    Bozites will steal your luggage. Just ask Sheldon... :)
  11. Kerr Avon

    Kerr Avon Master Member

    Trophy Points:
    Nuclear doesn't necessarily mean ground strikes. There could have been multiple air bursts used. I'd think that'd be more effective because with only a couple warheads you could wipe out electrical grids across the entire country. Going from a modern infrastructure to Amish lifestyle would be devastating and take a while to recover from.
  12. Michael Bergeron

    Michael Bergeron Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    I'm not as knowledgable about this history as some but I always found it hard to believe that such a large war would leave behind so many monuments (ie: Golden Gate bridge) unless they were:

    a) rebuilt

    b) a new type of warhead that didn't destroy conventionally, kind of an "all the affects of radiation without the messy blast" thing.

    There are a few inconsistencies in the history that make these questions more complex but in the end it's a TV show. ;)
  13. SSgt Burton

    SSgt Burton Sr Member

    Trophy Points:
    Isn't that the theory behind the Neutron bomb? It does have a small blast yield (small compared to the megaton bombs out there), but the main casualties are caused by a massive release of radiation.

  14. Onli Won Kanomi

    Onli Won Kanomi New Member

    Trophy Points:
    There is [and always has been] more than one kind of nuclear warfare that nuclear strategists have conceived...the "full release" strategic nuclear exchange that most movies and television show whenever "nuclear war" is depicted has always been the least likely scenario due to rational-choice theory and Mutual Assured Destruction deterrence developed by Hermann Kahn [the real-life 'Dr. Strangelove'] @ the RAND institute and adopted by the U.S. and Russia [then U.S.S.R.] in the 1960s. No geostrategic players have seriously contemplated starting such a war since...the consequences are universally understood to be bad for all concerned and no rational actor, not even bad actors, would choose that from free agency. The strategic deterrence forces have only been maintained to allow a response-in-kind retaliation in the event there was no free agent choice so as to maintain credibility of the MAD deterrence principle itself. Nobody wanted such a war to start. Thats why elaborate safeguards were put in place on both sides of the Iron Curtain to prevent it. Its also why the ORBITAL nuclear platforms seen in "Assignment Earth" and "2001 A Space Odyssey" were never built; because by reducing striking times from a half hour to as little as five minutes they'd have forced both sides to adopt a launch-on-warning protocol that would have made accidental war against rational choice almost inevitable. Which is why despite the theoretical advantages of orbital nuclear weapons platforms they were never built by either side [unless you believe "Meteor" or "Space Cowboys" lol].

    I think we can reasonably assume the nuclear warfare in ST was not a full release. And it was only full release that contemplated mutually destroying major population centers like San Francisco or Paris which clearly survived in Star Trek.

    As a result of MAD doctrine being adopted by East and West strategic thinking in the 70s was refocused towards counterforce first strikes where population centers would be deliberately NOT targeted so as to be a 'hostage' to deter retaliation against first strikes aimed at military counterforce targets and C3 [command/control/communication]. Thats why high accuracy MIRVS [multiple independantly targetable rentry vehicles] with reduced yields in the hundreds of kilotons were introduced in the 70s and the big ground pounders like the Sov 20 megaton SS-18s were progressively retired. With reduced CEP [circular error probability] of newer weapons and MIRVs high value military targets could be destroyed with smaller lower yield warheads. The Sovs kept a very few big SS-18s into the 80s [less than a dozen iirc?] for very hard targets like NORAD Cheyenne Mountain or federal ark bunkers like Mount Weather etc but they'd not have been used on cities so by the end of the 70s when Carl Sagans phony "nuclear winter" Big Lie was promoted by the MSM and Hollyweird the damage from even a large scale nuclear war would likely have been less than one with the big dirty Bombs common a decade or two earlier even with the greater total throw weight of both sides, and the effects the TTAPS political shills used to try and scarify the West, particularly Europe, into "nuclear freeze" and unilateral nuclear disarmament with were based on obsolete strategic theorems that no longer applied.

    Limited nuclear war based on decapitation of C3 and first strike defanging of high accuracy land based strategic missile forces to prevent effective counterforce retaliation while intentionally not targeting population centers to continue to deter SSBM retaliation was what nuclear war would have been in the 80s and what it would be in the future Star Trek describes.

    'Nuclear winter' never would have happened anyway but nobody today or the forseeable future [at least nobody human; if the Internet ever 'wakes up' due to a botnet 'virus' like in T3 who knows what 'skynet' might want lol] would choose to deliberately attack all their enemy's cities in a nuclear strike; they are just too valuable as hostages against sub attack while you kill the enemy's ICBMs and leadership.

    Its possible some cities might be targeted for other reasons than being population centers...Moscow, Washington, Beijing probably would go up 'on principle', maybe London and New York...but San Francisco and Paris?

    Not likely.

    However if the ST nuclear war was a long slow one over decades then that might explain why Kirk was so utterly horrified by the thought of a 500 year 'slow burn' war [even by simulation+suicide] between Ameniar and Vendicar in "A Taste Of Armageddon" eh? A couple decades in the 21st century of infrequent nuclear strikes with a few weapons each time to avoid mass retaliation might not have been destructive to human civilization or all our major cities but the prolonged TERROR it would cause all across the Earth would be unimaginable and any survivors - which most people would be - would consider Ameniar/Vendicar type war obscene far beyond even large scale nuclear war that we who grew up in the Bad Ol Days of the Cold War considered so horrifying.
  15. Wes R

    Wes R Legendary Member

    Trophy Points:
    This would b the best way to invade or just incapacitate the enemy actually. Some things would survive the EMP bursts but if you say did it at rush hour that would be a massive number of vehicles unable to operate and if you're lucky you could max out any shielding the enemy had on their computer systems then you send in the troops.
  16. NakedMoleRat

    NakedMoleRat Sr Member

    Trophy Points:
    The last thing we need are a bunch of prissy Amish walking around after the fact acting like they knew this was coming the whole time! :darnkids


Share This Page