FANDOM


m ({{featured}})
m (Cardassian Union)
 
(214 intermediate revisions by 72 users not shown)
Line 1: Line 1:
'''Cardassian history''' is perhaps one of the most [[history|histories]] of the [[species]] inhabiting the [[Alpha Quadrant]]. Originally, the [[Cardassian]] [[homeworld]] was that of a deeply spiritual and artistic people, which soon fell into decay when famine and plague struck their civilization. Over the years, Cardassian society evolved to adopt a philosophy that sacrificed their individual freedoms for the greater good of the state and their society. For over five centuries, the iron fisted [[Cardassian Central Command|Cardassian military]] sought to solve Cardassia's problems through the conquest of numerous worlds and species throughout the [[Milky Way Galaxy|galaxy]], leading to an era of expansion and conflict. This ultimately left Cardassian civilization in ruins once again after suffering the staggering losses of two major wars.
+
{{multiple}}
[[Image:CardassiaPrime2375.jpg|thumb|[[Cardassia Prime]] in [[2375]].]]
+
[[File:CardassiaPrime2375.jpg|thumb|Cardassia Prime in 2375]]
  +
'''Cardassian history''' was the history of the [[Cardassian]] people, probably one of the most brutal histories of the [[species]] of the [[Alpha Quadrant]].
   
==Early History==
+
== Early history ==
The ancient [[First Hebitian civilization|Hebitian]]s were a spiritual and peaceful civilization which thrived on [[Cardassia Prime]] centuries prior to the formation of the Cardassian Union. The Hebitian burial vaults were said to be magnificent and filled with many jeweled artifacts made of [[jevonite]]. Due to the [[planet]]'s scarcity in natural resources, the impoverished society suffered from famine and disease, leading to millions of deaths. The frail population then turned to a militaristic ideology thus ending the Hebitian way of life. ([[TNG]]: "[[Chain of Command, Part II]]")
+
In [[2369]], evidence was discovered that suggested many of the [[Milky Way Galaxy|galaxy]]'s [[humanoid]] races were descended from a [[Ancient humanoid|single humanoid race]]. Around [[4.5 billion years ago]] they had seeded many worlds with a [[DNA]] code to guide evolution to a form resembling their own. Cardassians displayed evidence of these DNA sequences. ({{TNG|The Chase}})
   
==First Contact==
+
The ancient [[First Hebitian civilization]] on [[Cardassia Prime]] was a highly-developed civilization which once thrived on the planet. The First Hebitian burial vaults were said to be magnificent and filled with many artifacts made of [[jevonite]]. ({{TNG|Chain of Command, Part II}})
[[Image:Bajoran lightship fireworks.jpg|thumb|The Cardassians welcome the Siskos to Cardassian space]]
 
[[First Contact|First contact]] between the [[Cardassian]]s and [[Bajoran]]s occurred as early as the [[16th century]]. Using their [[Bajoran lightship|lightships]] Bajoran explorers traversed the space around [[Bajor]] and stumbled upon [[tachyon eddy|tachyon eddies]], which took them all the way to Cardassia Prime. Centuries later any proof of such contact was lost and the Cardassian government would officially deny the story's plausibility. [[Benjamin Sisko]] and his son [[Jake Sisko|Jake]] proved the Cardassians wrong in late [[2371]] when Sisko constructed a lightship and stumbled upon the same eddies the ancient Bajorans had. Coincidentally, around this time evidence had been discovered on Cardassia corroborating the Bajorans' story. The military welcomed the Siskos to Cardassian space with open arms, describing the journey as "a testament to the spirit of the ancient Bajorans who first ventured out into space". ([[DS9]]: "[[Explorers]]")
 
   
==Cardassian Union==
+
=== First contact with the Bajorans ===
The [[Detapa Council]], [[Cardassian Central Command]] and [[Obsidian Order]] were jointly established in the [[19th century]] together forming what would be known as the [[Cardassian Union]]. [[Tret Akleen]] was said to be the "father" of the Union. ([[DS9]]: "[[Defiant (episode)|Defiant]]", "[[Tears of the Prophets]]")
+
[[File:Bajoran lightship fireworks.jpg|thumb|The Cardassians welcome the Siskos to Cardassian space]]
:'''See:''' [[Cardassian Union]]
+
[[First contact]] between the Cardassians and [[Bajoran]]s occurred as early as the [[16th century]]. Using their [[Bajoran lightship|lightships]], Bajoran explorers traversed the space around [[Bajor]] and stumbled upon [[tachyon eddy|tachyon eddies]], which accelerated them beyond the [[speed of light]], taking them all the way to Cardassia Prime at a distance of five [[light year]]s. Although the Cardassian government would later deny the story's plausibility, an ancient crash site of [[Bajoran lightship 001|a Bajoran lightship]] would be discovered on Cardassia "coincidentally" at the same time [[Commander]] [[Benjamin Sisko|Sisko]] and [[Jake Sisko|his son]] re-enacted the journey in late [[2371]], thereby forcing the Cardassians to acknowledge the achievement as "''a testament to the spirit of the ancient Bajorans who first ventured out into space''". ({{DS9|Explorers}})
   
===First Republic===
+
{{bginfo|Although the first crashes of Bajoran lightships onto Cardassia in the 16th century do not necessarily imply two-way communication between both civilizations, [[Akorem Laan]], who disappeared from Bajor in the late [[22nd century]], knew about Cardassians, indicating that contact had been established by that time. ({{DS9|Accession}}) That fact was further enforced in {{ENT|Dead Stop}} and {{e|Observer Effect}}, where it established that Cardassians were well underway in space travel by that time period.}}
The [[Cardassian First Republic|First Republic]] was established in the late-[[21st century]] and featured an era of excellent literature such as the works of [[Iloja of Prim]]. ([[DS9]]: "[[Destiny]]") By the mid-22nd century Cardassians began to explore [[space]]. ([[ENT]]: "[[Observer Effect]]")
 
   
===Modern Empire===
+
== Cardassian Union ==
[[Image:Cardassian Union logo.png|left|100px]]
+
[[File:Cardassian Union logo.png|right|100px]]
Having assumed a militaristic philosophy after the Hebitian society perished, Cardassians relied heavily on the military's expansion into the [[Milky Way Galaxy|galaxy]] to obtain the natural resources which were scarce on their [[Cardassia Prime|homeworld]]. The military colonized numerous worlds to obtain the resources for their population and in return had almost complete power over the people. This arrangement satisfied both the [[military]] and the people for many years. However, as the [[Cardassian Union]] continued to expand over the decades, so did the military's requirements. Eventually the military was taking in the majority of the obtained resources and providing the remains to the rest of the Cardassian citizens. This lead to a period of social discontent, as famine and disease once again struck Cardassia, as it had with its [[Hebitian|ancient civilization]]. To compensate, the military conquered neighboring planets and forced their native people to work as forced laborers. The most well known of these [[occupation]]s was that of [[Bajor]] in [[2328]]. The Occupation effectively ended in [[2369]] due to political pressure from the [[Federation]] on top of the constant [[terrorism]] and [[Guerrilla|guerrilla warfare]] from the [[Bajoran Resistance]]. ([[TNG]]: "[[Chain of Command, Part II]]", "[[Ensign Ro]]", [[DS9]]: "[[Duet]]", "[[Cardassians (episode)|Cardassians]]", etc)
+
The [[Detapa Council]], [[Cardassian Central Command]] and [[Obsidian Order]] were jointly established in the [[19th century]] together forming what was eventually known as the [[Cardassian Union]]. ({{DS9|Defiant}})
:'''See''': [[Occupation of Bajor]]
 
   
[[Image:Reklar.jpg|right|thumb|The [[Reklar]] and [[Enterprise-D]] meet in the [[DMZ]] over the dispute of [[Minos Korva]]]]
+
{{bginfo|In a scene cut from {{e|Tears of the Prophets}}, Garak noted that [[Tret Akleen]], who was born in the [[Ventani system]], was the "father" of the Cardassian Empire. Garak suggested that if the [[Federation Alliance]] took the Ventani system during their counterattack, such a loss of sacred ground would be devastating to the Cardassians, and a great [[propaganda]] victory for the [[Federation]].}}
Eventually their expansion brought them into conflict with the [[Klingon Empire]] causing the [[Betreka Nebula Incident]]. ([[DS9]]: "[[The Way of the Warrior]]") Their expansion also caused them to clash with the [[Federation]], resulting in the [[Federation-Cardassian War|Cardassian Wars]], eventually ending with the signing of a [[Federation-Cardassian Treaty|peace treaty]] in [[2368]] and the creation of a [[Demilitarized Zone]] [[2370|two years later]]. This was a perturbed peace and minor conflicts continued between both sides from time to time, including the Cardassians attempt to take [[Minos Korva]] by negotiating the release of [[Captain]] [[Jean-Luc Picard]]. The layout of the DMZ also contributed to the tensions. Due to the change in [[border]]s some Federation worlds became Cardassian territories and vice versa. Many of the people, whose worlds were turned over to the Cardassians, did not wish to leave and were granted permission to remain on their worlds. Disgruntled by the treatment they received from the Cardassians some of the citizens decided to revolt. This gave birth to the [[Maquis]]. ([[TNG]]: "[[The Wounded]]", "[[Chain of Command, Part I]]", "[[Chain of Command, Part II]]", [[DS9]]: "[[The Maquis, Part I]]", "[[The Maquis, Part II]]")
 
   
===Degeneration===
+
=== Pre-First Republic ===
[[Image:MaquisCardassianBattle.jpg|thumb|left|Maquis terrorists attack a Cardassian [[Galor class|vessel]]]]
+
[[File:Cardassian on repair station.jpg|thumb|left|A Cardassian victim of the [[automated repair station]] as seen in 2152]]
After exhausting much of their resources during the [[Federation-Cardassian War]] the [[Cardassian Union]] was in no shape for renewed conflict with the [[Federation]], so soon after the peace treaty. To make matters worse the Maquis were located in the [[Demilitarized Zone]], preventing the [[Cardassian Guard]] from launching a full-scale invasion to wipe them out. This enabled the Maquis to carry out numerous acts of sabotage and small military engagements against the Union. As the Maquis grew in size and strength tensions grew higher between the Federation and the Cardassian Union with neither side having a concrete solution to the problem. Instead, the Central Command secretly armed their citizens in the DMZ to combat the Maquis while the Maquis procured weapons by raiding various [[Starship|vessels]] as well as receiving [[Class-4 cloaking device|materials]] from the [[Klingon Empire]] in later years. ([[DS9]]: "[[The Maquis, Part I]], "[[The Maquis, Part II]]", "[[Defiant (episode)|Defiant]]", "[[For the Uniform]]", "[[Blaze of Glory]]")
+
By the mid-22nd century, Cardassian interstellar space travelers had been covertly observed by the [[Organian]]s, who studied how they were responding to a deadly [[silicon-based virus]], which parts of their crew had contracted on [[Unnamed_Alpha_and_Beta_Quadrant_planets#Organian_observation_planet|a planet]]. Although the Organians noted some initial compassion, the Cardassians eventually killed their infected crewmembers. ({{ENT|Observer Effect}}) At least one Cardassian spacefarer had become a victim of the [[automated repair station]] by [[2152]]. ({{ENT|Dead Stop}})
   
  +
{{bginfo|The date of first contact between the Federation and the Cardassian Union has never been established, though Cardassians and Humans had traveled in the same area of space as early as 2152, as seen in {{e|Dead Stop}} and {{e|Observer Effect}}. A Cardassian on Vulcan (see below) as well as [[Cardassian vole]]s being present in {{mu|Gabriel Lorca}}'s menagerie in [[2256]], suggests that some knowledge of Cardassia existed in the Federation by the 23rd century at least.}}
   
Attempting to reestablish relations with [[Bajor]] after the end of the [[Occupation of Bajor|occupation]] the Cardassians secretly worked out a treaty with the Bajorans. With [[Legate]] [[Turrel]] representing the [[Cardassian Union]] and [[Vedek]] [[Bareil Antos|Bareil]] initiating the talks and working out the details. Five months of secret discussions began between the two, from war reparations to an official apology from the Cardassians. However, Bareil was injured on his way to [[Deep Space 9]] to finalize the treaty so [[Kai]] [[Winn Adami|Winn]] completed the negotiations, thus creating the [[Bajoran-Cardassian Treaty]]. ([[DS9]]: "[[Life Support]]")
+
Also during the 22nd century, the burial vaults of the First Hebitian civilization were unearthed for the first time. They were plundered by the impoverished Cardassian population, and most of the artifacts stolen. ({{TNG|Chain of Command, Part II}})
   
The discovery of a large, hostile empire in the [[Gamma Quadrant]] in [[2370]] would prove to be one of the most devastating events for the Cardassian Empire. By [[2371]], no major [[Alpha Quadrant]] power was willing to commit to a firm solution to the threat of a [[Dominion]] invasion. Thus, the [[Enabran Tain|retired leader]] of the [[Obsidian Order]] took it upon himself to see Cardassia's involvement in preventing a major war. With the help of the [[Tal Shiar]] Enabran Tain was able to develop his own small fleet in the [[Orias system]] which he would use later that year in an attempt to wipe out the Dominion's rulers; the [[Founders]]. His plan was ultimately foiled by a [[Lovok (Changeling)|changeling infiltrator]], resulting in the disastrous [[Battle of the Omarion Nebula]]. The battle caused the [[Obsidian Order]] to completely collapse, allowing for the [[Cardassian dissident movement]] to overthrow the [[Cardassian Central Command|Central Command]]'s authority the [[2372|following year]]. The movement saw the restoration of the [[Detapa Council]] and civilian rule. ([[DS9]]: "[[The Jem'Hadar]]", "[[Improbable Cause]]", "[[The Die is Cast]]", "[[The Way of the Warrior]]")
+
=== First Republic ===
  +
The {{dis|First Republic|Cardassian}} existed as of the early-[[23rd century]] and was known for its serialist [[poetry]]. This included the works of [[serialist poets|serialist poet]] [[Iloja of Prim]], who was ultimately [[exile]]d on {{dis|Vulcan|planet}}, however. ({{DS9|Destiny}})
   
[[Image:Cardwreckage.jpg|thumb|The wreckage of the Cardassian fleet after the overwhelming Klingon forces invaded]]
+
{{bginfo|Although we do not know why or when Iloja was exiled, it must have occurred sometime during the lifetime of [[Tobin Dax]] (who met him on Vulcan), i.e., after the [[death]] of [[Lela Dax]] in [[2226]], but before [[Emony Dax]] would encounter [[Leonard McCoy]] sometime in the [[2240s]].}}
Having been suppressed for so long, the civilian population's ability to restore the Detapa Council was believed to be influenced by the [[Founders]] in the eyes of the [[Klingon Empire]]. Because of this, as well as [[Chancellor]] [[Gowron]] being influenced by an actual [[Martok (Changeling)|changeling]], the Klingon Empire launched an unprovoked and abrupt invasion of the Cardassian Union, thus beginning the [[Klingon-Cardassian War]]. The war devastated Cardassian infrastructure and crippled a large portion of their fleets. The Detapa Council, with the help of [[Gul]] [[Dukat]] and the [[Federation]], was able to obtain asylum aboard [[Deep Space 9]]. After the [[Klingon]]s were successfully [[First Battle of Deep Space Nine|driven away]] the war became a stalemate, with Klingon ships able to roam freely throughout [[Cardassian planets|Cardassian territory]]. Later that [[2372|year]], Dukat was able to procure a [[Dukat's Bird-of-Prey|Klingon vessel]] with the help of [[Major]] [[Kira Nerys]]. Despite the substantial information he obtained from the ship's [[computer log]]s and [[status report]]s, the Detapa Council wished to find a diplomatic solution to the war as opposed to using the information for launching a new offensive. Dukat then began a one-ship war against the Klingons with his captured [[Klingon Bird-of-Prey|Bird of Prey]]. ([[DS9]]: "[[The Way of the Warrior]]", "[[Return to Grace]]", "[[Rules of Engagement]]")
 
   
With the Cardassian [[Obsidian Order]] no longer existing, to keep the population in line, a fanatical separatist group known as the "[[True Way]]" began to unleash their frustration on the [[Federation]] and [[Bajor]] through [[terrorism]] and [[sabotage]]. Blaming the Federation for Cardassia's economical and political problems, and strongly opposed to the [[Bajoran-Cardassian Treaty]] made the [[2371|year prior]], the True Way was responsible for destroying the [[runabout]] ''[[USS Orinoco]]'' as well as a failed attempt at the life of [[Shakaar Edon]]. ([[DS9]]: "[[Our Man Bashir]]", "[[Crossfire]]")
+
By [[2257]], [[Starfleet]] {{dis|Captain|rank}} [[Christopher Pike]] had been awarded the [[Legate's Crest of Valor]] and the [[Proficient Service Medallion]], both prestigious Cardassian [[Medals and awards|commendations]]. ({{DIS|Brother}})
   
===Restoration===
+
=== Military empire ===
[[Image:Dukat joins Dominion.jpg|thumb||left|[[Dukat]] announces [[Cardassia]] has joined the [[Dominion]]]]
+
[[File:Terok Nor orbiting Bajor.jpg|thumb|Cardassian space station [[Terok Nor]] in orbit of [[Bajor]] prior to 2369]]
In [[2373]], the [[Dominion]] suddenly invaded the [[Alpha Quadrant]] with dozens of ships coming through the [[Bajoran wormhole]]. The [[Federation]] was preparing for the worst assuming the fleet was going to begin an interstellar war by attacking [[Deep Space 9]]. However, the fleet immediately changed course and headed directly for [[Cardassian planets|Cardassian space]]. Shortly thereafter, [[Dukat]] revealed that he had secretly negotiated an [[alliance]] with the Dominion over the past few months and made Cardassia an official [[Dominion#Members|member]], only weeks prior to the Dominion's entry of the Alpha Quadrant. The Detapa Council became completely powerless with Cardassia formally annexed and Dukat as the designated [[emperor|leader]] of the [[Cardassian]] people. Dukat later "justified" his actions by saying the alliance with the Dominion would restore Cardassia to its former glory, promising to push every Klingon ship from Cardassian territory and wipe out every [[Maquis]] colony in the [[DMZ]]. Dukat made good in his promise, for within 3 days every Maquis colony was destroyed with only a few members able to evade capture or death, and the entire Klingon invasion force was in full retreat. ([[DS9]]: "[[By Inferno's Light]]", "[[Blaze of Glory]]")
+
Due to the [[planet]]'s scarcity in natural resources, the Cardassian people eventually impoverished, suffering from [[famine]] and [[disease]], leading to millions of deaths. The frail population then turned to a militaristic ideology and relied heavily on the military's expansion into the galaxy to obtain the natural resources they needed. In order to sustain the population, the military [[colony|colonized]] numerous worlds and in return had complete power over the people as a [[totalitarianism|totalitarian]] [[military dictatorship]]. This mutually beneficial arrangement reached an impasse, however, and in order to battle recurring famines on Cardassia, the military [[military occupation|occupied]] additional nearby planets and subjugated their native people to work as forced laborers. Being located in a neighboring system only about five light years away, the [[Occupation of Bajor]] began in [[2319]] before it was formally [[annexation|annexed]] in [[2328]]. The Occupation effectively ended in 2369 due to political pressure from the Federation on top of the constant [[terrorism]] and [[guerrilla|guerrilla warfare]] from the [[Bajoran Resistance]]. ({{TNG|Chain of Command, Part II|Ensign Ro}}; {{DS9|Emissary|Duet|Cardassians}})
   
  +
{{bginfo|Since [[Madred]] still experienced a poor, starving Cardassia in his childhood, it could be concluded that the military takeover of Cardassia was a relatively recent phenomenon.}}
   
  +
{{see-list|Occupation of Bajor}}
  +
[[File:Weapon ranges overlay remastered.jpg|thumb|left|The USS ''Phoenix'' (blue) engaging two Cardassian ships (red)]]
  +
Eventually their expansion brought the Cardassians into conflict with the [[Klingon Empire]], causing the [[Betreka Nebula Incident]] which lasted for eighteen years. ({{DS9|The Way of the Warrior}})
  +
{{bginfo|No timeframe was given for those eighteen years, only [[Garak]]'s statement that it was "''ages ago''".}}
   
==Membership in the Dominion==
+
Their expansion also caused them to clash with the Federation, resulting in the [[Federation-Cardassian War]], during which the [[Setlik III massacre]] was a major incident. The war cost hundred thousands of lifes and severely weakened the Cardassian Union. It eventually ended with the signing of the [[Federation-Cardassian Armistice of 2367]] and the creation of a [[Demilitarized Zone]] [[2370|three years later]] due to the final [[Federation-Cardassian Treaty|peace treaty]]. This was a perturbed peace and minor conflicts continued between both sides from time to time, including the rogue {{dis|Captain|rank}} [[Benjamin Maxwell]] of the {{USS|Phoenix}} who attacked Cardassian targets, believing that the Cardassians were re-arming and preparing for a strike on Federation territory. Maxwell's fears were not unfounded, as Captain [[Jean-Luc Picard]] found out while investigating the matter: [[Cardassian supply ship]]s were supplying with jamming equipment a "research station" too close to Federation sectors; although alerted, he opted to keep a vigilant peace. ({{TNG|The Wounded|Chain of Command, Part II}})
===Early Success===
+
[[File:Reklar.jpg|thumb|The ''[[Reklar]]'' and ''Enterprise''-D meet over the dispute about Minos Korva in 2369]]
With the Cardassian Union's [[Federation-Cardassian border|borders]] returned to their pre-war state Dukat had successfully raised the Union to be a first-rate power in the Alpha Quadrant. However, Dukat's personal ambitions, combined with the [[Founders]] desire to bring order to the [[Milky Way Galaxy|galaxy]], meant that an interstellar war was inevitable. Requiring constant reinforcements of [[Starships|ships]], supplies, troops and [[Ketracel-white]] from the [[Gamma Quadrant]] to be able to conquer the entire Alpha Quadrant, the [[Federation]] decided to [[mine]] the entrance of the [[wormhole]] to prevent the strength of the Dominion from growing. This move was the provocation the Dominion needed to start a full-scale war against the [[Federation]] without coming across as the aggressors. The Dominion then sent a fleet of ships to [[Second Battle of Deep Space Nine|capture Deep Space Nine]] and prevent the minefield from completion which resulted in Dukat retaking the [[Terok Nor|station]]. Thus, the [[Dominion War]] began. ([[DS9]]: "[[Call to Arms]]")
+
Indeed, in 2369 the Federation was alerted when Cardassian forces relocated from the [[Bajoran sector]] towards the [[Federation-Cardassian border]] and feared for an incursion. Cardassians lured and captured Picard and then attempted to take [[Minos Korva]] by negotiating his release. The layout of the DMZ also contributed to the tensions. Due to the change in [[border]]s some Federation worlds became Cardassian territories and vice versa. Many of the people, whose worlds were turned over to the Cardassians, did not wish to leave and were granted permission to remain on their worlds. Disgruntled by the treatment they received from the Cardassians some of the citizens decided to revolt. This gave birth to the [[Maquis]]. ({{TNG|The Wounded|Chain of Command, Part I|Chain of Command, Part II}}; {{DS9|The Maquis, Part I|The Maquis, Part II}})
   
[[Image:Second fleet2.jpg|left|thumb|The [[Second Fleet]] retreating]]
+
=== Degeneration ===
For the first few months of the [[Dominion War|war]] Cardassia and the Dominion were unmatched on all fronts, constantly forcing the Federation and Klingon Empire to retreat. The utter failure of the Federation's [[Seventh Fleet]] at [[Tyra system|Tyra]] was one of the many engagements resulting in complete success for the Dominion. At the current rate of success it was only a matter of time before [[Earth]] and the rest of the Federation became completely conquered by the Dominion. However, a [[Operation Return|bold attack]] lead by [[Captain]] [[Benjamin Sisko]] saw the first engagement of the war where the allies were successful. Conversely, this was only due to the help of the [[Bajoran]] [[Prophets]] which destroyed all 2,800 Dominion ships inside the [[Bajoran wormhole|wormhole]] before they could enter the Alpha Quadrant. The sudden turn of events, toppled with the death of his daughter [[Tora Ziyal]], caused Dukat to have a mental breakdown. It was after this that Cardassians would begin to loose their status as equals with the [[Vorta]] and [[Jem'Hadar]] in the Dominion. ([[DS9]]: "[[A Time to Stand]]", "[[Sacrifice of Angels]]")
+
[[File:Maquis attack the Vetar.jpg|thumb|left|[[Maquis]] terrorists attack a Cardassian vessel in [[2370]]]]
  +
After exhausting much of their resources during the Federation-Cardassian War, the Cardassian Union was in no shape for renewed conflict with the Federation so soon after the peace treaty. To make matters worse the Maquis were based in the Demilitarized Zone, preventing the [[Cardassian military]] from launching a full-scale invasion to wipe them out. This enabled the Maquis to carry out numerous acts of [[sabotage]] and small military engagements against the Union. As the Maquis grew in size and strength, tensions grew higher between the Federation and the Cardassian Union with neither side having a concrete solution to the problem. Instead, the Central Command secretly armed their citizens in the DMZ to combat the Maquis while the Maquis procured weapons by raiding various [[starship|vessels]] as well as receiving [[Class-4 cloaking device|materials]] from the Klingon Empire in later years. ({{TNG|Preemptive Strike}}; {{DS9|The Maquis, Part I|The Maquis, Part II|Defiant|For the Uniform|Blaze of Glory}})
   
  +
[[File:Cardassian Court TV.jpg|thumb|Public broadcast of [[Miles O'Brien]]'s trial in 2370]]
  +
The Central Command attempted to deal with the situation in the DMZ by discrediting the Federation and providing evidence that they not only sanctioned the Maquis' actions, but were providing them with weapons to combat the Cardassians. An {{dis|Raymond Boone|Cardassian|undercover operative}} secretly developed evidence that [[Miles O'Brien]] was shipping [[photon torpedo]]es to the Maquis from [[Deep Space 9]]. The plan was foiled when Central Command's agent was discovered by the station's [[senior staff]], and the evidence against O'Brien was proven to be fabricated. ({{DS9|Tribunal}})
   
===Puppet Government & Rebellion===
+
Another failed attempt by Central Command was to wipe out a Maquis' [[Alpha 441|munitions base]] in the [[Badlands]] with the creation of their [[Cardassian ATR-4107|ATR-4107 missile]] (which was later renamed ''Dreadnought''). While the ATR-4107 effectively acted as a missile, it was also a fully autonomous warship capable of [[warp|warp speeds]] and carried a wide range of defensive weaponry. The ''Dreadnought'' had successfully made it to the Maquis munitions depot after fighting its way through every Maquis defense. However, due to the Cardassians' use of an outdated [[kinetic detonator]], the ''Dreadnought'' did not detonate as planned, but instead drifted in orbit of the [[planetoid]]. There, the Maquis reprogrammed the weapon to attack a Cardassian [[supply depot|fuel depot]] on [[Aschelan V]]. ''Dreadnought'' inexplicably disappeared in the Badlands while on the way to its new destination, only to be found by the {{USS|Voyager}} two years later in the [[Delta Quadrant]]. ({{VOY|Dreadnought}})
[[Image:Damar preaches freedom.jpg|thumb|Damar [[Cardassian Rebellion#Popular_uprising|rallying support]] on Cardassia against the Dominion]]
 
   
After Dukat's subsequent capture earlier that [[2374|year]] [[Damar]] was placed as the new leader of the Cardassian people. However, Damar's leadership would gradually become nothing more than ''[[wikipedia:De_facto#Politics |de facto]]'' government, with the [[Female Changeling]] holding all of the actual authority. Shortly after [[Deep Space 9]] was lost to the Federation, Damar was forced to call for peace by [[Weyoun]], despite his personal objections. Over time Damar was forced to obey Weyoun on almost all political and military decisions, including the order to reinforce the [[Son'a]] outpost on [[Devos II]] as opposed to perusing the ''[[USS Defiant|Defiant]]'', as Damar had initially ordered. ([[DS9]]: "[[Statistical Probabilities]]", "[[Penumbra]]")
+
[[File:Negotiations life support.jpg|thumb|left|In 2371, Kai Winn Adami negotiates the [[Bajor-Cardassia Treaty]] with Legate Turrel while [[Benjamin Sisko]] mediates their discussion]]
  +
Attempting to reestablish relations with Bajor after the end of the occupation the Cardassians secretly worked out a treaty with the Bajorans, with [[Legate]] [[Turrel]] representing the Cardassian Union following the initiative of [[Vedek]] [[Bareil Antos|Bareil]]. Five months of secret discussions began between the two, from war reparations to an official apology from the Cardassians. However, Bareil was injured on his way to Deep Space 9 to finalize the treaty so [[Kai]] [[Winn Adami|Winn]] completed the negotiations, thus creating the [[Bajoran-Cardassian Treaty]]. The first joint Federation-Bajoran-Cardassian effort under the new peace treaty, called the [[Wormhole relay station|Wormhole Comm Relay Project]], was to create a [[Gamma Quadrant]] relay station to aid communications through the [[Bajoran wormhole]]. [[Yarka|A Bajoran vedek]] accused the participating Cardassian scientists, [[Ulani Belor]], [[Gilora Rejal]], and [[Dejar]], to be "three vipers that would destroy the Celestial Temple". Although Dejar was indeed exposed by Ulani Belor as an Obsidian Order operative, who, as it turned out, was not only tasked with surveillance but to undermine Bajoran-Cardassian relations by sabotaging the entire project, the Wormhole Comm Relay was successfully completed. ({{DS9|Life Support|Destiny}})
   
Damar gradually realized that he was simply running a puppet government under Dominion regime and that Cardassians were becoming second-class citizens within their own territory. When the [[Female Changeling|Founder]] negotiated with the [[Breen]] to join the Dominion in [[2375]] she made territorial concessions on behalf of Cardassia. Damar, forced to sign the negotiations as the designated leader of Cardassia, realized his power had been completely usurped. It was then that Damar began his [[Cardassian Rebellion|rebellion]] against the Dominion oppressors. ([[DS9]]: "[[The Changing Face of Evil]]", "[[When It Rains...]]", "[[Tacking Into the Wind]]")
+
The discovery of a large, hostile empire in the Gamma Quadrant in 2370 proved to be one of the most devastating events for the Cardassian Empire, as this so-called "[[Dominion]]" would soon start to [[Dominion cold war|destabilize the Alpha Quadrant]]. By 2371, no major Alpha Quadrant power was willing to commit to a firm solution to the threat of a Dominion invasion. [[Enabran Tain]], the retired leader of the Obsidian Order, took it upon himself to see Cardassia's involvement in preventing a major war. With the help of the [[Tal Shiar]], Tain was able to develop his own small fleet in the [[Orias system]] which he would use later that year in an attempt to wipe out the Dominion's rulers; the [[Founder]]s. His plan was ultimately foiled by a {{dis|Lovok|Changeling|Changeling infiltrator}}, resulting in the disastrous [[Battle of the Omarion Nebula]]. The battle caused the Obsidian Order to completely collapse, allowing for the [[Cardassian dissident movement]] to overthrow the Central Command's authority the [[2372|following year]]. The movement saw the restoration of the Detapa Council and civilian rule. ({{DS9|The Jem'Hadar|Improbable Cause|The Die is Cast|The Way of the Warrior}})
   
His [[Cardassian Rebellion#Military revolt|military rebellion]] was destroyed when [[Gul]] [[Revok]] betrayed it and provided the Dominion with the information necessary to locate their bases. However, Damar learned upon arriving back on [[Cardassia Prime]] that he had more of an impact on all Cardassians than he thought. The entire civilian population eventually [[Cardassian Rebellion#Popular uprising|joined]] Damar's rebellion and was able to cause a planet-wide blackout during the [[Battle of Cardassia]]. The confusion and lack of communication with their [[Dominion Headquarters|main headquarters]] enabled the [[Federation Alliance|allies]] to defeat the Dominion forces, forcing them to retreat to Cardassia Prime for one final stand. When the Dominion destroyed [[Lakarian City]] in retaliation for the blackout, the remaining [[Cardassian Guard|military]] forces switched sides, helping the [[Federation Alliance]] defeat the Dominion once and for all. ([[DS9]]: "[[The Dogs of War]]", "[[What You Leave Behind]]")
+
[[File:Cardassian wreckage.jpg|thumb|The wreckage of the Cardassian fleet after the overwhelming Klingon forces invaded]]
  +
Having been suppressed for so long, the civilian population's ability to restore the Detapa Council was believed to be influenced by the Founders in the eyes of the Klingon Empire. Because of this, as well as [[Klingon Chancellor|Chancellor]] [[Gowron]] being influenced by an {{dis|Martok|Changeling|actual changeling}}, the Klingon Empire launched an unprovoked and abrupt [[invasion]] of the Cardassian Union, thus beginning the [[Klingon-Cardassian War]]. The war devastated Cardassian infrastructure and crippled a large portion of their fleets. The Detapa Council, with the help of [[Gul]] [[Dukat]] and the Federation, was able to obtain asylum aboard Deep Space 9. After the [[Klingon]]s were successfully [[First Battle of Deep Space 9|driven away]] the war became a stalemate, with Klingon ships able to roam freely throughout [[Cardassian planets|Cardassian territory]]. Later that year, Dukat was able to procure a [[Dukat's Bird-of-Prey|Klingon vessel]] with the help of [[Major]] [[Kira Nerys]]. Despite the substantial information he obtained from the ship's [[computer log]]s and [[status report]]s, the Detapa Council wished to find a diplomatic solution to the war as opposed to using the information for launching a new offensive. Dukat then began a one-ship war against the Klingons with his captured [[Klingon Bird-of-Prey|Bird-of-Prey]]. ({{DS9|The Way of the Warrior|Return to Grace|Rules of Engagement}})
   
By the end of the [[Dominion War]], Cardassia Prime was devastated by orbital bombardment and [[Jem'Hadar]] raids by the Dominion, who wished to wipe out the Cardassian species for their betrayal. Over 800 million men, women and children were slaughtered in the planet-wide [[genocide]]. The Cardassian [[Cardassian Guard|military]] was reduced greatly from two years of total war with the [[Federation Alliance]], an [[Eleventh Order|entire Order]] was wiped out from a single engagement, and their [[Cardassian Union#Economy|economy]] was crippled. Cardassia Prime had once again become a planet plagued with [[wikipedia:famine|famine]], [[death]], [[Medical conditions|disease]] and destruction, leaving the remaining [[Cardassian]]s to rebuild. ([[DS9]]: "[[What You Leave Behind]]")
+
With the Cardassian Obsidian Order no longer existing to keep the population in line, a fanatical separatist group known as the "[[True Way]]" began to unleash their frustration on the Federation and Bajor through terrorism and sabotage. Blaming the Federation for Cardassia's economic and political problems, and strongly opposed to the Bajoran-Cardassian Treaty concluded the prior year, the True Way was responsible for destroying the [[runabout]] {{USS|Orinoco}}, assassinating two Bajoran officials as well as a failed attempt at the life of [[Shakaar Edon]]. ({{DS9|Our Man Bashir|Crossfire}})
   
{{featured}}
+
=== Restoration ===
  +
[[File:Dukat joins Dominion.jpg|thumb|left|In 2373, Dukat announces Cardassia has joined the Dominion]]
  +
In [[2373]], the Dominion suddenly invaded the Alpha Quadrant with dozens of ships coming through the Bajoran wormhole. The Federation was preparing for the worst, assuming the fleet was going to begin an interstellar war by attacking Deep Space 9. However, the fleet immediately changed course and headed directly for Cardassian space. Shortly thereafter, Dukat revealed that he had secretly negotiated an [[alliance]] with the Dominion over the past few months and made Cardassia an official [[Dominion#Members|member]], only weeks prior to the Dominion's entry of the Alpha Quadrant. The Detapa Council became completely powerless with Cardassia formally annexed and Dukat as the designated leader of the Cardassian people. Dukat later justified his actions by stating the alliance with the Dominion would restore Cardassia to its former glory, promising to push every Klingon ship from Cardassian territory and wipe out every Maquis colony in the DMZ. Dukat made good on his promise, for within three days every Maquis colony was destroyed, with only a few members able to evade capture or death, and the entire Klingon invasion force was in full retreat. ({{DS9|By Inferno's Light|Blaze of Glory}})
   
[[Category:Cardassia| Cardassian history]]
+
== Membership in the Dominion ==
  +
:''See also: [[Dominion War]]''
  +
=== Early success ===
  +
With the Cardassian Union's borders returned to their pre-war state, Dukat had successfully raised the Union to again be a major power in the Alpha Quadrant. However, Dukat's personal ambitions, combined with the Founders' desire to bring order to the galaxy, meant that an interstellar war was inevitable. Since the Dominion required constant reinforcements of ships, supplies, troops and [[ketracel-white]] from the Gamma Quadrant to be able to conquer the entire Alpha Quadrant, the Federation decided to [[mine]] the entrance of the [[wormhole]] to prevent the strength of the Dominion from growing. This move was the provocation the Dominion needed to start a full-scale war against the Federation without coming across as the aggressors. The Dominion then sent a fleet of ships to [[Second Battle of Deep Space 9|capture Deep Space 9]] and prevent the minefield from completion which resulted in Dukat retaking the [[Terok Nor|station]]. Thus, the [[Dominion War]] began. ({{DS9|Call to Arms}})
  +
  +
[[File:Dominion fires.jpg|thumb|Dominion and Cardassian ships attacking Deep Space 9]]
  +
For the first few months of the war Cardassia and the Dominion were unmatched on all fronts, constantly forcing the Federation and Klingon Empire to retreat. The utter failure of the Federation's [[Seventh Fleet]] at [[Tyra system|Tyra]] was one of the many engagements resulting in complete success for the Dominion. At the current rate of success it was only a matter of time before [[Earth]] and the rest of the Federation became completely conquered by the Dominion. However, a [[Operation Return|bold attack]] lead by Captain Benjamin Sisko saw the first major engagement of the war where the allies were successful. Conversely, this was only due to the help of the Bajoran [[Prophet]]s which stopped all 2,800 Dominion ships inside the Bajoran wormhole before they could enter the Alpha Quadrant. The sudden turn of events, combined with the death of his daughter [[Tora Ziyal]], caused Dukat to have a mental breakdown. It was after this defeat, that Cardassians began to lose their status as equals with the [[Vorta]] and [[Jem'Hadar]] in the Dominion. ({{DS9|A Time to Stand|Sacrifice of Angels}})
  +
  +
=== Puppet government, occupation and rebellion ===
  +
After Dukat's subsequent capture earlier [[2374|that year]], [[Damar]] was installed as the new leader of the Cardassian people. However, Damar's position gradually became nothing more than a simple formality, with the [[Female Changeling]] and [[Weyoun 5|Weyoun]] running a ''[[de facto]]'' government. Shortly after Deep Space 9 was lost to the Federation, Damar was forced to call for peace by Weyoun, despite his personal objections. Over time, Damar was forced to obey Weyoun on almost all political and military decisions, including the order to reinforce the [[Son'a]] outpost on [[Devos II]] as opposed to pursuing the {{USS|Defiant|2370}}, as Damar had initially ordered. ({{DS9|Statistical Probabilities|Penumbra}})
  +
[[File:Damar preaches freedom.jpg|thumb|left|Damar rallying support on Cardassia against the Dominion]]
  +
Damar gradually realized that he was simply running a puppet government under Dominion rule and that Cardassians were becoming second-class citizens within their own territory. When the Female Changeling negotiated with the [[Breen]] to join in [[Breen-Dominion Alliance|a new alliance]] in [[2375]], she made territorial concessions on behalf of Cardassia. Damar, forced to sign the agreement as the designated leader of Cardassia without even knowing the exact concessions, realized his power had been completely usurped while seven million Cardassian soldiers had already died in the war. It was then that Damar began his [[Cardassian Rebellion|rebellion]] against the Dominion oppressors by striking [[Rondac III]]. ({{DS9|The Changing Face of Evil|When It Rains...|Tacking Into the Wind}})
  +
  +
His military rebellion was effectively destroyed when Gul [[Revok]] betrayed it and the Dominion gained the necessary information to locate and destroy their bases. However, Damar learned upon arriving back on Cardassia Prime that he had had more of an impact on all Cardassians than he thought. The general population eventually joined Damar's rebellion and was able to cause a planet-wide blackout during the [[Battle of Cardassia]]. ({{DS9|The Dogs of War|What You Leave Behind}})
  +
  +
=== Demise ===
  +
[[File:Cardassia in ruins.jpg|thumb|The capital city on Cardassia Prime in ruins after the Dominion War in 2375]]
  +
When the Dominion destroyed [[Lakarian City]] in retaliation for the blackout, the remaining Cardassian ships switched sides; this, coupled with the confusion and lack of communication with their [[Dominion Headquarters|main headquarters]] among Dominion forces due to the blackout, helped the Federation Alliance defeat the Dominion forcing them to retreat for a final stand at Cardassia Prime.
  +
  +
While the war could be ended without a full-scale allied assault on the planet, by the end of the Dominion War Cardassia Prime was in ashes; devastated by the Jem'Hadar, who had been ordered to wipe out the Cardassian species for their betrayal. Over eight hundred million men, women and children were slaughtered in this planet-wide [[genocide]]. The Cardassian military was reduced greatly from two years of total war against the Federation Alliance, and their [[Cardassian Union#Economy|economy]] was crippled. In the [[Treaty of Bajor]], the Cardassian Union agreed that all Alpha Quadrant territories would revert to the status before the Dominion's entry into the quadrant.
  +
  +
Cardassia, a once proud, powerful and unrelenting force in the Alpha Quadrant, had once again become a planet plagued with famine, death, disease and destruction, leaving the remaining Cardassians to rebuild it and pick up the pieces amongst the ruins. A tragic ending for a once mighty people, and a fate Klingon Chancellor [[Martok]] believed most Bajorans would call ''"poetic justice"''. ({{DS9|What You Leave Behind}})
  +
  +
== Legacy ==
  +
In [[1996]], after a decades-long ordeal on [[20th century]] Earth, a mentally confused Captain [[Braxton]] from the [[29th century]] called a [[Los Angeles]] [[police officer]] a "''quasi-Cardassian totalitarian.''" ({{VOY|Future's End}})
  +
  +
{{bginfo|As Cpt. Braxton was a seasoned time traveler, his remark might not necessarily reflect the reputation or at least stereotype of Cardassians in the 29th century.}}
  +
  +
== Alternate timelines ==
  +
In a [[quantum reality]] visited by [[Worf]] in 2370, the Cardassian Empire had been overthrown by the very aggressive Bajorans. In this same universe, a Cardassian also served as the [[conn officer]] of the {{USS|Enterprise|NCC-1701-D|-D}}. ({{TNG|Parallels}})
  +
  +
By the year [[2422]] of an [[alternate timeline]], created by the disappearance of Benjamin Sisko in 2372, the Cardassians had entered into a mutual defense pact with the Bajorans, to defend against the Klingon Empire. ({{DS9|The Visitor}})
  +
  +
=== Alternate reality ===
  +
A drink named [[Cardassian sunrise]] was available in the [[Shipyard Bar]] in [[2255]] of the [[alternate reality]]. ({{film|11}})
  +
  +
=== Mirror universe ===
  +
In the [[mirror universe]], the Cardassians eventually joined forces with the Klingons to form the [[Klingon-Cardassian Alliance]], which defeated the [[Terran Empire]]. The Alliance was still existing by 2375, although it faced a growing [[Terran Rebellion]]. ({{DS9|Crossover|The Emperor's New Cloak}})
  +
  +
== Timeline ==
  +
*'''Ancient history''': The spiritual and peaceful First Hebitian civilization thrives on Cardassia Prime, leaving behind burial vaults and artifacts of [[jevonite]].
  +
*'''[[16th century]]''': By stumbling upon [[tachyon eddy|tachyon eddies]], [[Bajoran]] explorers in [[Bajoran lightship 001|their lightships]] reach Cardassia Prime, crashing on the planet and possibly initiating [[first contact]].
  +
*'''[[19th century]]''': The [[Detapa Council]], [[Cardassian Central Command]] and [[Obsidian Order]] are jointly established, forming what is eventually known as the [[Cardassian Union]].
  +
*'''Mid-[[22nd century]]''': By this time, Cardassians travel through interstellar space, having encountered the [[Automated repair station]] and the [[Unnamed Alpha and Beta Quadrant planets#Organian observation planet|silicon-virus planet]], among others. Also during that century, the by now impoverished Cardassian population discovers and plunders the ancient First Hebitian burial vaults.
  +
*'''Early-[[23rd century]]''': As of this time, the {{dis|First Republic|Cardassian}} exists on Cardassia, which is known for its serialist [[poetry|poets]] including [[Iloja of Prim]], who has to spend an [[exile]] on {{dis|Vulcan|planet}}, however.
  +
*'''[[2319]]''': Around this year, the Cardassian Union begins "to help and develop" [[Bajor]], starting its ''de facto'' [[Occupation of Bajor|occupation]].
  +
*'''[[2328]]''': Bajor is formally annexed by the Cardassian Union.
  +
*'''[[2346]]''': [[Gul]] [[Dukat]] becomes Prefect of Bajor and the [[2351|5 years-long]] construction of [[Terok Nor]], an ore-processing and command station, begins in orbit of Bajor.
  +
*'''[[2360]]''': Dukat assumes command of Terok Nor.
  +
*'''[[2367]]''': The [[Federation]] and the Cardassian Union sign [[Federation-Cardassian Armistice of 2367|an armistice]], ending the [[Federation-Cardassian War]].
  +
*'''[[2369]]''': The Cardassian Union withdraws from Bajor, ending the Occupation.
  +
*'''[[2370]]''': A Cardassian scheme to reassert influence over Bajor by secretly supporting the anti-Federation [[Alliance for Global Unity]] fails. Later that year, the [[Federation-Cardassian Treaty]] is signed, leading to the establishment of a [[Demilitarized Zone]] but also the formation of a resistance movement, the [[Maquis]].
  +
*'''[[2371]]''': The [[Bajoran-Cardassian Treaty]] initiates the normalization of relations between both governments. Later that year, the Obsidian Order is wiped out by the [[Dominion]] in the [[Battle of the Omarion Nebula]].
  +
*'''[[2372]]''': The [[Cardassian dissident movement]] overthrows Central Command and full authority is restored to the Detapa Council. Fearing Dominion involvement in the recent civilian takeover, the [[Klingon Empire]] starts the [[Klingon-Cardassian War]] and occupies parts of the Cardassian territory. A terrorist group known as the [[True Way]] soon emerges and blames the Federation for Cardassia's troubles.
  +
*'''[[2373]]''': Gul Dukat leads his people to become a full Dominion member. With [[Jem'Hadar]] assistance, the Maquis is destroyed and the Klingons are expelled from Cardassian territory. Toward the end of the year, the Dominion-Cardassian forces [[Second Battle of Deep Space 9|conquer]] Deep Space 9, starting the [[Dominion War]].
  +
*'''[[2374]]''': After an initial string of successes, the Federation [[Operation Return|succeeds]] in retaking DS9, forcing the Dominion to withdraw to Cardassian territory. Leadership of the Cardassian Union is transferred to [[Damar]]. Later that year, the [[Federation Alliance]] [[First Battle of Chin'toka|manages]] to occupy the [[Chin'toka system]], the first part of Cardassian territory lost during the war.
  +
*'''[[2375]]''': Without Cardassian pre-knowledge and costing Cardassian territorial concessions, the [[Breen]] join the Dominion's side in the war. Later, Damar launches the [[Cardassian Rebellion]] against the Dominion, which installs Legate [[Broca]] as new Cardassian leader. The Rebellion incites a civilian uprising on Cardassia, to which the Dominion responds by destroying [[Lakarian City]]. During the [[Battle of Cardassia]], this causes the Cardassian fleet to switch sides and join the Federation Alliance. The [[Female Changeling]]'s last order to exterminate the entire Cardassian population is never carried out and the Dominion surrenders, but at least 800 million Cardassians are killed (including Damar) with Cardassia Prime in ruins. The Cardassian Union subsequently becomes a signatory of the [[Treaty of Bajor]], formally ending the Dominion War.
  +
  +
== Appendices ==
  +
=== See also ===
  +
*[[Interstellar history]]
  +
**[[Dominion history]]
  +
**[[Bajoran history]]
  +
**[[Federation history]]
  +
**[[Klingon history]]
  +
  +
=== External link ===
  +
* {{mbeta}}
  +
  +
{{featured|date=December 2006|id=476198}}
  +
  +
[[de:Cardassianische Geschichte]]
  +
[[Category:Cardassia]]
  +
[[Category:History]]

Latest revision as of 01:43, June 23, 2019

Multiple realities
(covers information from several alternate timelines)
CardassiaPrime2375

Cardassia Prime in 2375

Cardassian history was the history of the Cardassian people, probably one of the most brutal histories of the species of the Alpha Quadrant.

Early history Edit

In 2369, evidence was discovered that suggested many of the galaxy's humanoid races were descended from a single humanoid race. Around 4.5 billion years ago they had seeded many worlds with a DNA code to guide evolution to a form resembling their own. Cardassians displayed evidence of these DNA sequences. (TNG: "The Chase")

The ancient First Hebitian civilization on Cardassia Prime was a highly-developed civilization which once thrived on the planet. The First Hebitian burial vaults were said to be magnificent and filled with many artifacts made of jevonite. (TNG: "Chain of Command, Part II")

First contact with the Bajorans Edit

Bajoran lightship fireworks

The Cardassians welcome the Siskos to Cardassian space

First contact between the Cardassians and Bajorans occurred as early as the 16th century. Using their lightships, Bajoran explorers traversed the space around Bajor and stumbled upon tachyon eddies, which accelerated them beyond the speed of light, taking them all the way to Cardassia Prime at a distance of five light years. Although the Cardassian government would later deny the story's plausibility, an ancient crash site of a Bajoran lightship would be discovered on Cardassia "coincidentally" at the same time Commander Sisko and his son re-enacted the journey in late 2371, thereby forcing the Cardassians to acknowledge the achievement as "a testament to the spirit of the ancient Bajorans who first ventured out into space". (DS9: "Explorers")

Although the first crashes of Bajoran lightships onto Cardassia in the 16th century do not necessarily imply two-way communication between both civilizations, Akorem Laan, who disappeared from Bajor in the late 22nd century, knew about Cardassians, indicating that contact had been established by that time. (DS9: "Accession") That fact was further enforced in ENT: "Dead Stop" and "Observer Effect", where it established that Cardassians were well underway in space travel by that time period.

Cardassian Union Edit

Cardassian Union logo

The Detapa Council, Cardassian Central Command and Obsidian Order were jointly established in the 19th century together forming what was eventually known as the Cardassian Union. (DS9: "Defiant")

In a scene cut from "Tears of the Prophets", Garak noted that Tret Akleen, who was born in the Ventani system, was the "father" of the Cardassian Empire. Garak suggested that if the Federation Alliance took the Ventani system during their counterattack, such a loss of sacred ground would be devastating to the Cardassians, and a great propaganda victory for the Federation.

Pre-First Republic Edit

Cardassian on repair station

A Cardassian victim of the automated repair station as seen in 2152

By the mid-22nd century, Cardassian interstellar space travelers had been covertly observed by the Organians, who studied how they were responding to a deadly silicon-based virus, which parts of their crew had contracted on a planet. Although the Organians noted some initial compassion, the Cardassians eventually killed their infected crewmembers. (ENT: "Observer Effect") At least one Cardassian spacefarer had become a victim of the automated repair station by 2152. (ENT: "Dead Stop")

The date of first contact between the Federation and the Cardassian Union has never been established, though Cardassians and Humans had traveled in the same area of space as early as 2152, as seen in "Dead Stop" and "Observer Effect". A Cardassian on Vulcan (see below) as well as Cardassian voles being present in Gabriel Lorca's menagerie in 2256, suggests that some knowledge of Cardassia existed in the Federation by the 23rd century at least.

Also during the 22nd century, the burial vaults of the First Hebitian civilization were unearthed for the first time. They were plundered by the impoverished Cardassian population, and most of the artifacts stolen. (TNG: "Chain of Command, Part II")

First Republic Edit

The First Republic existed as of the early-23rd century and was known for its serialist poetry. This included the works of serialist poet Iloja of Prim, who was ultimately exiled on Vulcan, however. (DS9: "Destiny")

Although we do not know why or when Iloja was exiled, it must have occurred sometime during the lifetime of Tobin Dax (who met him on Vulcan), i.e., after the death of Lela Dax in 2226, but before Emony Dax would encounter Leonard McCoy sometime in the 2240s.

By 2257, Starfleet Captain Christopher Pike had been awarded the Legate's Crest of Valor and the Proficient Service Medallion, both prestigious Cardassian commendations. (DIS: "Brother")

Military empire Edit

Terok Nor orbiting Bajor

Cardassian space station Terok Nor in orbit of Bajor prior to 2369

Due to the planet's scarcity in natural resources, the Cardassian people eventually impoverished, suffering from famine and disease, leading to millions of deaths. The frail population then turned to a militaristic ideology and relied heavily on the military's expansion into the galaxy to obtain the natural resources they needed. In order to sustain the population, the military colonized numerous worlds and in return had complete power over the people as a totalitarian military dictatorship. This mutually beneficial arrangement reached an impasse, however, and in order to battle recurring famines on Cardassia, the military occupied additional nearby planets and subjugated their native people to work as forced laborers. Being located in a neighboring system only about five light years away, the Occupation of Bajor began in 2319 before it was formally annexed in 2328. The Occupation effectively ended in 2369 due to political pressure from the Federation on top of the constant terrorism and guerrilla warfare from the Bajoran Resistance. (TNG: "Chain of Command, Part II", "Ensign Ro"; DS9: "Emissary", "Duet", "Cardassians")

Since Madred still experienced a poor, starving Cardassia in his childhood, it could be concluded that the military takeover of Cardassia was a relatively recent phenomenon.
Weapon ranges overlay remastered

The USS Phoenix (blue) engaging two Cardassian ships (red)

Eventually their expansion brought the Cardassians into conflict with the Klingon Empire, causing the Betreka Nebula Incident which lasted for eighteen years. (DS9: "The Way of the Warrior")

No timeframe was given for those eighteen years, only Garak's statement that it was "ages ago".

Their expansion also caused them to clash with the Federation, resulting in the Federation-Cardassian War, during which the Setlik III massacre was a major incident. The war cost hundred thousands of lifes and severely weakened the Cardassian Union. It eventually ended with the signing of the Federation-Cardassian Armistice of 2367 and the creation of a Demilitarized Zone three years later due to the final peace treaty. This was a perturbed peace and minor conflicts continued between both sides from time to time, including the rogue Captain Benjamin Maxwell of the USS Phoenix who attacked Cardassian targets, believing that the Cardassians were re-arming and preparing for a strike on Federation territory. Maxwell's fears were not unfounded, as Captain Jean-Luc Picard found out while investigating the matter: Cardassian supply ships were supplying with jamming equipment a "research station" too close to Federation sectors; although alerted, he opted to keep a vigilant peace. (TNG: "The Wounded", "Chain of Command, Part II")

Reklar

The Reklar and Enterprise-D meet over the dispute about Minos Korva in 2369

Indeed, in 2369 the Federation was alerted when Cardassian forces relocated from the Bajoran sector towards the Federation-Cardassian border and feared for an incursion. Cardassians lured and captured Picard and then attempted to take Minos Korva by negotiating his release. The layout of the DMZ also contributed to the tensions. Due to the change in borders some Federation worlds became Cardassian territories and vice versa. Many of the people, whose worlds were turned over to the Cardassians, did not wish to leave and were granted permission to remain on their worlds. Disgruntled by the treatment they received from the Cardassians some of the citizens decided to revolt. This gave birth to the Maquis. (TNG: "The Wounded", "Chain of Command, Part I", "Chain of Command, Part II"; DS9: "The Maquis, Part I", "The Maquis, Part II")

Degeneration Edit

Maquis attack the Vetar

Maquis terrorists attack a Cardassian vessel in 2370

After exhausting much of their resources during the Federation-Cardassian War, the Cardassian Union was in no shape for renewed conflict with the Federation so soon after the peace treaty. To make matters worse the Maquis were based in the Demilitarized Zone, preventing the Cardassian military from launching a full-scale invasion to wipe them out. This enabled the Maquis to carry out numerous acts of sabotage and small military engagements against the Union. As the Maquis grew in size and strength, tensions grew higher between the Federation and the Cardassian Union with neither side having a concrete solution to the problem. Instead, the Central Command secretly armed their citizens in the DMZ to combat the Maquis while the Maquis procured weapons by raiding various vessels as well as receiving materials from the Klingon Empire in later years. (TNG: "Preemptive Strike"; DS9: "The Maquis, Part I", "The Maquis, Part II", "Defiant", "For the Uniform", "Blaze of Glory")

Cardassian Court TV

Public broadcast of Miles O'Brien's trial in 2370

The Central Command attempted to deal with the situation in the DMZ by discrediting the Federation and providing evidence that they not only sanctioned the Maquis' actions, but were providing them with weapons to combat the Cardassians. An undercover operative secretly developed evidence that Miles O'Brien was shipping photon torpedoes to the Maquis from Deep Space 9. The plan was foiled when Central Command's agent was discovered by the station's senior staff, and the evidence against O'Brien was proven to be fabricated. (DS9: "Tribunal")

Another failed attempt by Central Command was to wipe out a Maquis' munitions base in the Badlands with the creation of their ATR-4107 missile (which was later renamed Dreadnought). While the ATR-4107 effectively acted as a missile, it was also a fully autonomous warship capable of warp speeds and carried a wide range of defensive weaponry. The Dreadnought had successfully made it to the Maquis munitions depot after fighting its way through every Maquis defense. However, due to the Cardassians' use of an outdated kinetic detonator, the Dreadnought did not detonate as planned, but instead drifted in orbit of the planetoid. There, the Maquis reprogrammed the weapon to attack a Cardassian fuel depot on Aschelan V. Dreadnought inexplicably disappeared in the Badlands while on the way to its new destination, only to be found by the USS Voyager two years later in the Delta Quadrant. (VOY: "Dreadnought")

Negotiations life support

In 2371, Kai Winn Adami negotiates the Bajor-Cardassia Treaty with Legate Turrel while Benjamin Sisko mediates their discussion

Attempting to reestablish relations with Bajor after the end of the occupation the Cardassians secretly worked out a treaty with the Bajorans, with Legate Turrel representing the Cardassian Union following the initiative of Vedek Bareil. Five months of secret discussions began between the two, from war reparations to an official apology from the Cardassians. However, Bareil was injured on his way to Deep Space 9 to finalize the treaty so Kai Winn completed the negotiations, thus creating the Bajoran-Cardassian Treaty. The first joint Federation-Bajoran-Cardassian effort under the new peace treaty, called the Wormhole Comm Relay Project, was to create a Gamma Quadrant relay station to aid communications through the Bajoran wormhole. A Bajoran vedek accused the participating Cardassian scientists, Ulani Belor, Gilora Rejal, and Dejar, to be "three vipers that would destroy the Celestial Temple". Although Dejar was indeed exposed by Ulani Belor as an Obsidian Order operative, who, as it turned out, was not only tasked with surveillance but to undermine Bajoran-Cardassian relations by sabotaging the entire project, the Wormhole Comm Relay was successfully completed. (DS9: "Life Support", "Destiny")

The discovery of a large, hostile empire in the Gamma Quadrant in 2370 proved to be one of the most devastating events for the Cardassian Empire, as this so-called "Dominion" would soon start to destabilize the Alpha Quadrant. By 2371, no major Alpha Quadrant power was willing to commit to a firm solution to the threat of a Dominion invasion. Enabran Tain, the retired leader of the Obsidian Order, took it upon himself to see Cardassia's involvement in preventing a major war. With the help of the Tal Shiar, Tain was able to develop his own small fleet in the Orias system which he would use later that year in an attempt to wipe out the Dominion's rulers; the Founders. His plan was ultimately foiled by a Changeling infiltrator, resulting in the disastrous Battle of the Omarion Nebula. The battle caused the Obsidian Order to completely collapse, allowing for the Cardassian dissident movement to overthrow the Central Command's authority the following year. The movement saw the restoration of the Detapa Council and civilian rule. (DS9: "The Jem'Hadar", "Improbable Cause", "The Die is Cast", "The Way of the Warrior")

Cardassian wreckage

The wreckage of the Cardassian fleet after the overwhelming Klingon forces invaded

Having been suppressed for so long, the civilian population's ability to restore the Detapa Council was believed to be influenced by the Founders in the eyes of the Klingon Empire. Because of this, as well as Chancellor Gowron being influenced by an actual changeling, the Klingon Empire launched an unprovoked and abrupt invasion of the Cardassian Union, thus beginning the Klingon-Cardassian War. The war devastated Cardassian infrastructure and crippled a large portion of their fleets. The Detapa Council, with the help of Gul Dukat and the Federation, was able to obtain asylum aboard Deep Space 9. After the Klingons were successfully driven away the war became a stalemate, with Klingon ships able to roam freely throughout Cardassian territory. Later that year, Dukat was able to procure a Klingon vessel with the help of Major Kira Nerys. Despite the substantial information he obtained from the ship's computer logs and status reports, the Detapa Council wished to find a diplomatic solution to the war as opposed to using the information for launching a new offensive. Dukat then began a one-ship war against the Klingons with his captured Bird-of-Prey. (DS9: "The Way of the Warrior", "Return to Grace", "Rules of Engagement")

With the Cardassian Obsidian Order no longer existing to keep the population in line, a fanatical separatist group known as the "True Way" began to unleash their frustration on the Federation and Bajor through terrorism and sabotage. Blaming the Federation for Cardassia's economic and political problems, and strongly opposed to the Bajoran-Cardassian Treaty concluded the prior year, the True Way was responsible for destroying the runabout USS Orinoco, assassinating two Bajoran officials as well as a failed attempt at the life of Shakaar Edon. (DS9: "Our Man Bashir", "Crossfire")

Restoration Edit

Dukat joins Dominion

In 2373, Dukat announces Cardassia has joined the Dominion

In 2373, the Dominion suddenly invaded the Alpha Quadrant with dozens of ships coming through the Bajoran wormhole. The Federation was preparing for the worst, assuming the fleet was going to begin an interstellar war by attacking Deep Space 9. However, the fleet immediately changed course and headed directly for Cardassian space. Shortly thereafter, Dukat revealed that he had secretly negotiated an alliance with the Dominion over the past few months and made Cardassia an official member, only weeks prior to the Dominion's entry of the Alpha Quadrant. The Detapa Council became completely powerless with Cardassia formally annexed and Dukat as the designated leader of the Cardassian people. Dukat later justified his actions by stating the alliance with the Dominion would restore Cardassia to its former glory, promising to push every Klingon ship from Cardassian territory and wipe out every Maquis colony in the DMZ. Dukat made good on his promise, for within three days every Maquis colony was destroyed, with only a few members able to evade capture or death, and the entire Klingon invasion force was in full retreat. (DS9: "By Inferno's Light", "Blaze of Glory")

Membership in the Dominion Edit

See also: Dominion War

Early success Edit

With the Cardassian Union's borders returned to their pre-war state, Dukat had successfully raised the Union to again be a major power in the Alpha Quadrant. However, Dukat's personal ambitions, combined with the Founders' desire to bring order to the galaxy, meant that an interstellar war was inevitable. Since the Dominion required constant reinforcements of ships, supplies, troops and ketracel-white from the Gamma Quadrant to be able to conquer the entire Alpha Quadrant, the Federation decided to mine the entrance of the wormhole to prevent the strength of the Dominion from growing. This move was the provocation the Dominion needed to start a full-scale war against the Federation without coming across as the aggressors. The Dominion then sent a fleet of ships to capture Deep Space 9 and prevent the minefield from completion which resulted in Dukat retaking the station. Thus, the Dominion War began. (DS9: "Call to Arms")

Dominion fires

Dominion and Cardassian ships attacking Deep Space 9

For the first few months of the war Cardassia and the Dominion were unmatched on all fronts, constantly forcing the Federation and Klingon Empire to retreat. The utter failure of the Federation's Seventh Fleet at Tyra was one of the many engagements resulting in complete success for the Dominion. At the current rate of success it was only a matter of time before Earth and the rest of the Federation became completely conquered by the Dominion. However, a bold attack lead by Captain Benjamin Sisko saw the first major engagement of the war where the allies were successful. Conversely, this was only due to the help of the Bajoran Prophets which stopped all 2,800 Dominion ships inside the Bajoran wormhole before they could enter the Alpha Quadrant. The sudden turn of events, combined with the death of his daughter Tora Ziyal, caused Dukat to have a mental breakdown. It was after this defeat, that Cardassians began to lose their status as equals with the Vorta and Jem'Hadar in the Dominion. (DS9: "A Time to Stand", "Sacrifice of Angels")

Puppet government, occupation and rebellion Edit

After Dukat's subsequent capture earlier that year, Damar was installed as the new leader of the Cardassian people. However, Damar's position gradually became nothing more than a simple formality, with the Female Changeling and Weyoun running a de facto government. Shortly after Deep Space 9 was lost to the Federation, Damar was forced to call for peace by Weyoun, despite his personal objections. Over time, Damar was forced to obey Weyoun on almost all political and military decisions, including the order to reinforce the Son'a outpost on Devos II as opposed to pursuing the USS Defiant, as Damar had initially ordered. (DS9: "Statistical Probabilities", "Penumbra")

Damar preaches freedom

Damar rallying support on Cardassia against the Dominion

Damar gradually realized that he was simply running a puppet government under Dominion rule and that Cardassians were becoming second-class citizens within their own territory. When the Female Changeling negotiated with the Breen to join in a new alliance in 2375, she made territorial concessions on behalf of Cardassia. Damar, forced to sign the agreement as the designated leader of Cardassia without even knowing the exact concessions, realized his power had been completely usurped while seven million Cardassian soldiers had already died in the war. It was then that Damar began his rebellion against the Dominion oppressors by striking Rondac III. (DS9: "The Changing Face of Evil", "When It Rains...", "Tacking Into the Wind")

His military rebellion was effectively destroyed when Gul Revok betrayed it and the Dominion gained the necessary information to locate and destroy their bases. However, Damar learned upon arriving back on Cardassia Prime that he had had more of an impact on all Cardassians than he thought. The general population eventually joined Damar's rebellion and was able to cause a planet-wide blackout during the Battle of Cardassia. (DS9: "The Dogs of War", "What You Leave Behind")

Demise Edit

Cardassia in ruins

The capital city on Cardassia Prime in ruins after the Dominion War in 2375

When the Dominion destroyed Lakarian City in retaliation for the blackout, the remaining Cardassian ships switched sides; this, coupled with the confusion and lack of communication with their main headquarters among Dominion forces due to the blackout, helped the Federation Alliance defeat the Dominion forcing them to retreat for a final stand at Cardassia Prime.

While the war could be ended without a full-scale allied assault on the planet, by the end of the Dominion War Cardassia Prime was in ashes; devastated by the Jem'Hadar, who had been ordered to wipe out the Cardassian species for their betrayal. Over eight hundred million men, women and children were slaughtered in this planet-wide genocide. The Cardassian military was reduced greatly from two years of total war against the Federation Alliance, and their economy was crippled. In the Treaty of Bajor, the Cardassian Union agreed that all Alpha Quadrant territories would revert to the status before the Dominion's entry into the quadrant.

Cardassia, a once proud, powerful and unrelenting force in the Alpha Quadrant, had once again become a planet plagued with famine, death, disease and destruction, leaving the remaining Cardassians to rebuild it and pick up the pieces amongst the ruins. A tragic ending for a once mighty people, and a fate Klingon Chancellor Martok believed most Bajorans would call "poetic justice". (DS9: "What You Leave Behind")

Legacy Edit

In 1996, after a decades-long ordeal on 20th century Earth, a mentally confused Captain Braxton from the 29th century called a Los Angeles police officer a "quasi-Cardassian totalitarian." (VOY: "Future's End")

As Cpt. Braxton was a seasoned time traveler, his remark might not necessarily reflect the reputation or at least stereotype of Cardassians in the 29th century.

Alternate timelines Edit

In a quantum reality visited by Worf in 2370, the Cardassian Empire had been overthrown by the very aggressive Bajorans. In this same universe, a Cardassian also served as the conn officer of the USS Enterprise-D. (TNG: "Parallels")

By the year 2422 of an alternate timeline, created by the disappearance of Benjamin Sisko in 2372, the Cardassians had entered into a mutual defense pact with the Bajorans, to defend against the Klingon Empire. (DS9: "The Visitor")

Alternate reality Edit

A drink named Cardassian sunrise was available in the Shipyard Bar in 2255 of the alternate reality. (Star Trek)

Mirror universe Edit

In the mirror universe, the Cardassians eventually joined forces with the Klingons to form the Klingon-Cardassian Alliance, which defeated the Terran Empire. The Alliance was still existing by 2375, although it faced a growing Terran Rebellion. (DS9: "Crossover", "The Emperor's New Cloak")

Timeline Edit

Appendices Edit

See also Edit

External link Edit

This is a featured article. At the time it was featured (December 2006) it was considered one of the best examples of the Memory Alpha community's work. This article was featured more than five years ago though, and its status should be reviewed. The links below can be used to check how the article has changed in that time.
Featured revision (476198)Diff to currentBlurb
Community content is available under CC-BY-NC unless otherwise noted.