This page contains information regarding Star Trek: Picard, and thus may contain spoilers.
The Attack on Mars was a surprise attack on Mars which occurred on April 5, First Contact Day, in 2385. It was orchestrated by rogue A500 synths originating from the Daystrom Institute's Division of Advanced Synthetic Research.
In 2385, it was discovered that the Romulan sun would soon become a supernova, destroying the planets Romulus and Remus as well as other planets, and killing at least nine hundred million Romulans. The Romulan Star Empire requested aid from the United Federation of Planets, and Admiral Jean-Luc Picard convinced Starfleet to mobilize a massive rescue armada -- "ten thousand warp-capable ferries" -- to aid in the evacuation efforts, which assembled over Mars. (PIC: "Remembrance")
On First Contact Day, only a skeleton crew remained to work at the Utopia Planitia Ship Yards, the center of the fleet during the holiday. Multiple A500s at Utopia Planitia, such as F8, suddenly went rogue. It lowered the deflector shields protecting the shipyards and the planet itself, and hacked the Martian defense net. (PIC: "Remembrance", "Maps and Legends")
The attack Edit
Moments thereafter, numerous synth ships began targeting the rescue armada, the Utopia Planitia Ship Yards, the Mars Orbital Facility, and other Martian facilities. The satellite network surrounding Mars was turned against the surface. The synths then began bombarding the surface, igniting flammable vapors in the stratosphere and causing massive damage to the planet's infrastructure. After the attack began, F8 killed his coworkers and then himself.
Though initial reports estimated over three thousand killed, the death toll was eventually revised to 92,143 in total. During the battle, Admiral Picard was shown on the Federation News Network, calling it "devastating".
Because it could not be determined how or why the synths went rogue, the Federation Council placed a ban on the creation of synthetic lifeforms. Androids such as B-4 were dismantled, and the Daystrom Institute was restricted to "theoretical" studies on synthetics.
With the destruction of the Romulan rescue armada, Admiral Picard submitted a plan to replace the lost ships with mothballed vessels from Beta Antares Ship Yards and the 40 Eridani A Starfleet Construction Yards. Starfleet, aware that the Romulan rescue mission was unpopular among many of the Federation's member races, instead abandoned its promise to aid the Romulan evacuation altogether, a decision that shocked Picard. In desperation, he submitted his resignation, demanding that Starfleet either accept it or honor their promise to the Romulans; to his surprise and dismay, they accepted the resignation. In the years that followed, Picard had developed recurring nightmares of the attack, partly from his loss of faith in Starfleet.
In 2387, the Romulan sun did indeed go supernova, destroying the Romulan system and killing millions. Picard blamed Starfleet's inaction for the high death toll, lamenting that "The decision to call off the rescue and to abandon those people we had sworn to save was not just dishonorable, it was downright criminal!"
As of 2399, Mars remained ablaze. Dr. Agnes Jurati later referred to the planet as having been "destroyed" in the attack. (Star Trek; ST: "Children of Mars"; PIC: "Remembrance", "The End is the Beginning")