So, for the past couple of weeks I've been recovering from surgery and listening to EPU audios, and I got to thinking (insomuch as one can on heavy painkillers). I know G very much likes to avoid thinking about interstellar politics but I can't stop myself and I've gotta get this out or I'll just keep thinking about it.
So Day of Infamy (or whatever replaces it) happens, and in its wake the Federation and Starfleet are both pretty much destroyed as a galactic power and transition instead to (essentially) a rogue state run by a Sith Lord. The remaining Federation forces are off the table in terms of galactic peacekeeping.
As we see in the existing version of DoI, a big sticking point of the negotiations for a new Galactic Alliance is galactic defence, with negotiations instead revolving around member states reverting to the use of their own armed forces in lieu of a single body such as Starfleet.
Which leaves me wondering about the role of the WDF (and, by extension, the IPO Space Force) in New Frontier.
The WDF exists to be an extrapolitical force for galactic defence. With huge fleets of fold-capable battleships, they have the capacity to near-instantly respond to crises such as the incursion seen in The Vastru Encounter. It seems like a natural fit for them to work with and/or take direction from some combination of the GA (in whatever form its governing body takes) and the Babylon Foundation to react to urgent threats concerning galactic defence.
It also seems well suited to intervene in matters relating to conflicts between GA member states, in the fashion of Picard's ad-hoc fleet's arrival on Titan during the Earth crackdown, This, politically, is a tougher sell than the idea of the WDF attacking external threats. The WDF are easily tied to the Republic of Zeta Cygni, who I would assume would also be a member state of the GA. It would be important to sever this tie, or at least provide reasonable political distance between Zeta Cygni's government (such as it is) and the WDF.
Which leads me to the IPO.
Zeta Cygni's head of state IS the head of the International Police. For an Earth Alliance spin doctor during the cold war period before DoI, this must have been the biggest godsend in the galaxy. "The IPO have engaged in an armed conflict with our forces at Titan, their chief is the head of the Zetan government, ergo this was an act of war" etc etc. It would be trivially easy for a GA member state to paint with a complaint with either the IPO or New Avalon to paint one as the other in order to sow distrust.
How to solve this? As with the WDF, the simplest solution would be to distance the IPO politically from ZC. This may involve Gryphon stepping down from the Zetan government, and potentially moving the IPO's headquarters to more neutral ground such as Babylon Station. Alternately, an enterprising GA negotiator could propose to make Zeta Cygni the administrative capital of the Galactic Alliance, subsuming the Republic of Zeta Cygni into the GA itself - sort of like Washington DC's status as a district.
Finally turning to the IPO's role, it makes a certain amount of sense to transition the organisation to a formally sanctioned galactic criminal investigation department, under the purview of the GA itself (potentially involving a merger with the 3WA, whose purpose I can't really work out anymore) and working in partnership with similar internal police forces within GA member states.
The Space Force seems fairly redundant for this role - why does a police force need a fleet of destroyers? It does however fit quite well as a branch of the WDF in the above-mentioned role as Peacekeepers for conflicts between GA member states.
- I took a lot of painkillers
- The WDF are basically Starfleet for the Galactic Alliance
- The IPO would work well as an FBI-analogue working under the GA
- The IPO-SF should transition to the WDF as a peacekeeping fleet
- The Republic of Zeta Cygni needs to distance itself from both bodies
- God damn that feels better out in writing and not crammed into my head