(written from a Production point of view)
Kira's old Resistance leader's refusal to return some farming equipment to the Bajoran Government nearly starts a civil war.
On Deep Space 9, Commander Sisko is playing darts with Chief Miles O'Brien in Quark's Bar. Sisko loses the match, with O'Brien stating he is 'in the zone' and cannot lose. Sisko then gets called by Jadzia Dax to come to Ops.
Sisko then visits Major Kira's quarters. He sees that she has been praying, and inquires about the lamp she has lit in her shrine. She explains that it is a duranja, or lamp for the dead. She reveals that she has been praying for the deceased Vedek Bareil Antos. Then Sisko drops a bombshell on her: Kalem Apren has died of a heart attack in his sleep, and her archenemy, Kai Winn Adami, was appointed the new First Minister of Bajor.
Odo is talking to Kira in the wardroom about various station issues. Odo notices Kira seems distracted and she talks about her concerns with Winn being both First Minister and Kai, including the fact that no other candidates are willing to oppose Winn in the upcoming elections. Odo notes that the Bajoran people don't share her skepticism and see Winn as a hero who made peace with Cardassia. Kira feels that once Winn gets power, she won't let it go. She wishes other Bajorans could see this as clearly as she and Odo can.
After the meeting, Kira is again praying in her quarters when the chime rings. It is Kai Winn. After an exchange about Kira's prayer, and the fact that Winn has made no mention of Bareil's involvment in achieving the peace treaty with Cardassia, Winn states the reason for her visit; she needs Kira's help. Winn explains that Rakantha Province, formerly one of the most productive agricultural regions of Bajor had, like most of the planet, its soil poisoned by the Cardassians during the Occupation and rendered unusable for agriculture. To cleanse the soil, the Bajoran Agricultural Ministry developed soil reclamators to remove the poisons. The Government wants to use them in Rakantha to allow agriculture to resume there and be able to grow boton, moreka, and salam grass for export, believing that the increased interstellar commerce will enhance Bajor's application to join the Federation in a few years. Kira does not understand what that has to do with her, and Winn explains that some farmers in her home province of Dahkur have refused to turn over the reclamators to the Government to be used in Rakantha. Winn further states that the leader of the farmers in Dahkur is none other than Shakaar Edon, her former Resistance leader.
Winn wants Kira to convince Shakaar to hand over the reclamators. Kira is skeptical about helping Winn do anything, but Winn asks her to act for the greater good of Bajor despite any personal feelings. Kira does eventually agree to speak to Shakaar, but makes no promises.
Kira beams down to Dahkur Province near a farm. It clearly has seen better days, with dry, barren soil everywhere. She approaches the home to determine if anyone is there, but a hand on her back startles her; it is Shakaar. After some pleasantries, they go inside. Shakaar mentions that their fellow Resistance cell members Furel and Lupaza will arrive in a couple hours. He tells Kira that he knows why she is there, and needs time to think about it.
Meahwhile, back on DS9, O'Brien beats Dax at darts for his 46th victory in a row. Quark states that he will take bets on the next challenger at ten to one, without even knowing who the challenger is. As he leaves, O'Brien mentions that he would like to go kayaking in the holosuite, but Quark convinces him to work to maintain his streak, with O'Brien stating that Quark should make the odds fifteen to one.
Back on Bajor, Kira, Shakaar, Lupaza, and Furel are sharing stories about their time in the Resistance, including an explanation of why Furel did not replace his lost left arm. Eventually the subject of the reclamators comes up, and while Shakaar states he is still considering the matter, Lupaza makes her feelings clear that they should not be returned until they are finished with them. Going outside the farmhouse, Kira points out to Shakaar that the situation is not going to go away and that he needs to think about what is best for Bajor. Shakaar explains his side, that after three years of being on a waiting list the Government finally gave the reclamators to them and said they could have them for at least a year. Once First Minister Aprem died, their return to the Government after only two months of use was ordered. Kira tells him about the Rakantha project and the possibility that Bajor could begin exporting again, but he says they need the reclamators to feed themselves. Kira asks Shakaar to meet with Winn to explain that to her and possibly work out a compromise. While skeptical, he agrees to as a personal favor to Kira.
Kira then meets with Kai Winn in the First Minister's Office. Winn is angered that Kira did not convince Shakaar to immediately return the reclamators. Kira explains that she arranged a meeting with Shakaar to hear his side and work out a compromise, and Winn states that she has little choice but to agree to participate. Winn then tells Kira she may return to DS9 after informing Shakaar of her acceptance, and rejects Kira's request to stay.
In Shakaar's home, he tells Kira he is willing to hear Winn out but will not give back the reclamators. Kira tells him he must be flexible and that he may not win this fight, but Shakaar states that the Cardassians said the same thing. Just then, two Bajoran security officers enter the house to arrest Shakaar, which Kira obviously did not know about. Shakaar punches one officer and Kira hits the other. He tells her she does not have to fight with him, and that her attack can be explained away, but Kira has had enough of Winn's lying and wants to help Shakaar.
In a cave with a weapons cache inside, Shakaar and Kira gather supplies along with Furel. Lupaza then arrives and states that Shakaar's farm was seized and scanning equipment was brought in to search for the reclamators. Reinforcements were also requested from surrounding areas to search for the "fugitives". She also says that several Resistance cell members were detained for questioning, including Mobara, Klin, and Ornak. The others are heading for the Kola Mountain stronghold. Shakaar states that his plan is to keep running from the Bajoran civil police and reach the stronghold to meet with the others; they then move out.
Meanwhile, O'Brien is playing darts against a Vulcan Starfleet officer, Syvar. O'Brien is one bulls-eye away from winning, but before he can throw his dart, he reaches behind himself for a synthale from Quark and promptly pops his arm out of his shoulder. O'Brien tries to throw it anyway but cannot and has to leave for surgery with Bashir to fix the problem, thus forfeiting the game.
Back on Bajor, some time later, Sisko enters Winn's office at her request, expressing surprise she would want his advice. She says that what she really wants is his help. The chase for Shakaar and his followers, for which Winn ordered the Bajoran Militia to take over, has generated sympathy for his cause in many provinces. That forced Winn to declare martial law and suspend local government in some areas such as the Hill Provinces to contain civil disorder. Sisko encourages her to withdraw the Militia from Dahkur, and Winn says she will if Sisko provides a Federation security force to take their place. Per Federation law, Sisko refuses, stating that this is a matter internal to Bajor. Winn responds by stating Bajor would withdraw its application for entry into the Federation. Sisko calls that, and the entire response to the situation, an overreaction over the mere possession of farm equipment. Winn states that the issue is not farm equipment but respect for the law and preventing anarchy. She further states that the Prophets are testing her, and she will accomplish her goals by any means necessary.
Shakaar and his group are seen running down a slope evading Milita troops; Kira activates a device to redirect their lifesigns elsewhere to distract them. The group is growing tired of running; Shakaar decides to lead the troops into Tanis Canyon to ambush them.
Shakaar and the others are hiding on the canyon's ridgeline watching the Militia troops enter. Kira recognizes the commander of the troops, Colonel Lenaris Holem, having met him a year ago at a reception. Shakaar gives the order to pick targets and fire; he chooses Lenaris and tells Kira to shoot a lieutenant. Neither one of them can bring themselves do it, however. Shakaar then stands up and along with Kira approaches Lenaris. They talk about their situation and recall Lenaris' Pullock V raid during the Occupation, then Shakaar states that he wants to take his people out of the canyon. Before Lenaris can respond, one of his men shoots at Furel; Lenaris, Kira, and Shakaar work frantically to prevent anyone else from firing.
Lenaris has the shooter removed from the area and tells Shakaar what he wants is not possible. Kira points out they need figure out how to get it done, or a civil war could result.
Lenaris then brings Shakaar and Kira to Winn's office. Winn is initially pleased but becomes disappointed when Lenaris tells her that they are not prisoners; Shakaar is there to enter the election as a candidate for First Minister. Lenaris adds that the Militia supports Shakaar doing so, though Kira clarifies the effort is not a coup but a free and fair election. She also states that if Winn chooses to remain in the race, the entire incident will be made public and everyone will know how close to civil war Winn brought them over farm equipment.
Back on DS9, Kira returns to her quarters with Sisko, where she tells him that Winn issued a statement of support for Shakaar and while a few other candidates entered the race, Shakaar is expected to win easily due to his popularity. Once Sisko leaves, she goes to her duranja and blows out the flame, finally moving past her grief over Bareil's death.
"Commander, is the chief in here?"
"He's over there… 'in the zone'."
- - Bashir, after Sisko plays darts with Miles O'Brien in Quark's
"I'm in the zone! I just need…"
(O'Brien cries out in pain after lifting the arm he just dislocated)
"I just need surgery…"
- - O'Brien, not giving up
"Shakaar sounds like a prideful and arrogant man. It also seems there's no reasoning with him."
- - Winn, to Kira
"Glad to see that living on a space station hasn't slowed you down."
- - Shakaar, when Kira knocks out a Bajoran deputy
"I believe the house is paying fifteen to one?
"All I did was hand him a drink…"
- - Syvar and Quark, after Chief O'Brien has forfeited the game
"It has been my observation that one of the prices of giving people freedom of choice, is that sometimes they make the wrong choice."
- - Odo, to Kira
Background information Edit
Story and scriptEdit
- This episode serves as a sequel of sorts to the episode "Life Support" and it contains numerous references to the death of Vedek Bareil and the signing of the Bajoran-Cardassian Treaty.
- An early idea for this episode was to have a museum on Bajor reopened to protests from Shakaar and others who believed it would be better to use the resources to feed the Bajoran people. No one was happy with the state of the screenplay however until Ronald D. Moore came up with the idea that Kai Winn could attempt to become political leader of Bajor, as well as its spiritual leader. This injected some much needed conflict into the plot, and everything else fell into place after that. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)
- Robert Hewitt Wolfe commented "We developed the idea of doing an episode based on Zapata, who rose up to overthrow the unjust government of Mexico and then put in a government that he rose up to overthrow as well. He kept fighting well after the war was won. I think that was the idea here, just to see Kira's mentor and the fact that it's not easy to end a war even when your side has won". (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages p 97)
- Gordon Dawson and Ira Steven Behr had previously worked together on the television series Bret Maverick. Indeed, Dawson had actually given Behr his first writing assignment. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)
- In a possible deleted scene, Syvar mentioned he was the science officer of the USS Garuda. The script called for the Garuda to be depicted by stock footage of the USS Prometheus from "Second Sight", although the script described it as being a Prometheus-class starship, rather than Nebula-class. The script specified for the Garuda to appear twice. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion - A Series Guide and Script Library)
- The prayer which Kira recites for Bareil at the start of the episode is a request to the Prophets that Bareil be guided and protected on his journey to the gates of heaven. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)
- The exteriors in this episode were shot in Bronson Canyon, but the weather was so cold that a number of scheduled shots were never completed, and were instead rewritten so they could be filmed in the studio. Indeed, so many shots were dropped that the crew ended up with some free time while at the canyon, so they went into the real caves at the canyon and shot the cave scenes scheduled for shooting in the studio. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)
- Director Jonathan West describes Shakaar as "a good leader and a good killer," and he explains that while filming, "we had to give him that edge." (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)
- Ira Behr commented "Without a doubt, an episode that was severely truncated by time. It ended way too abruptly, and I thought that hurt the show. I do, however, think that Duncan Regehr is a much worthier love interest for Kira than Bareil. I also think it was one of Louise Fletcher's best performances, and Jonathan West did a nice job directing". (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages p 97)
- This episode marks the first appearance of Duncan Regehr as Shakaar Edon.
- This episode is Jonathan West's directorial debut for DS9.
- This is the first episode of the series to have music composed by Paul Baillargeon.
- According to Winn, this episode takes place three months after the events of "Life Support".
- The Bajoran phaser rifle appears for the first time. About ten rifles are seen in the scenes set on Bajor.
- William Lucking and Diane Salinger make their first appearance as Furel and Lupaza, respectively, in this episode. Furel and Lupaza were seen again in Season 5's "The Darkness and the Light". Furel later returned in "Ties of Blood and Water" in a flashback.
- John K. Shull would later play Klingon Captain K'Temang in the fourth season episode "Return to Grace".
- Sherman Howard previously played Endar in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Suddenly Human".
- Cirroc Lofton (Jake Sisko) does not appear in this episode.
Video and DVD releasesEdit
- UK VHS release (two-episode tapes, CIC Video): Volume 3.12, 11 September 1995
- As part of the DS9 Season 3 DVD collection
Links and references Edit
Also starring Edit
- Rene Auberjonois as Constable Odo
- Siddig El Fadil as Doctor Julian Bashir
- Terry Farrell as Lieutenant Jadzia Dax
- Cirroc Lofton as Jake Sisko
- Colm Meaney as Chief Miles O'Brien
- Armin Shimerman as Quark
- Nana Visitor as Major Kira Nerys
Guest stars Edit
- Duncan Regehr as Shakaar Edon
- Diane Salinger as Lupaza
- William Lucking as Furel
- Sherman Howard as Syvar
- John Doman as Lenaris Holem
Special guest star Edit
Uncredited co-stars Edit
- Brian Demonbreun as a Starfleet science officer
- Dennis Madalone as a Bajoran trooper
- David B. Levinson as Broik
- Mark Riccardi as a Bajoran security deputy
- Mark Allen Shepherd as Morn
- Unknown performers as
Stunt double Edit
agrobiology; anarchy; Bajor; Bajorans; Bajoran-Cardassian Treaty; Bajoran Agricultural Ministry; Bajoran civil police; Bajoran language; Bajoran Militia; Bajoran phaser rifle; Bajoran Provisional Government; Bajoran Resistance; Bareil Antos; bloody nose; boton; Cardassia; Cardassians; chemistry; coach; column; coup d'etat; darts; Dahkur Hills; Dahkur Province; Donark; duranja; election; Eminence; Emissary of the Prophets; farmer; Federation; Federation law; fertility; First Minister; freedom of choice; Furel's doctor; Gallitep; hand-eye coordination; heart; Hill Provinces; heart failure; holosuite; humoral socket; intermediary; Kalem Apren; kayaking; kilometer; Klin; Kola Mountain; Kola Mountain stronghold; Lenaris Holem's brother; Lonar Province; martial law; medical tricorder; medkit; meter; Milky Way Galaxy; Mobara; moreka; Occupation of Bajor; Ornak; Ornathia resistance cell; Palmers; poison; prayer; priority message; Pullock V; Quark's; Rakantha farming project; Rakantha Province; Ratosha Pass; ravine; refugee; rotator cuff; salam grass; scandal; Serpent's Ridge; Shakaar resistance cell; sleep; soil; soil reclamator; Starfleet; synthale; tactical computer module; Tanis Canyon; Tongo; tract; tuwaly pie; weather
- "Shakaar" at Memory Beta, the wiki for licensed Star Trek works
- "Shakaar" at Wikipedia
- Shakaar at StarTrek.com, the official Star Trek website
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