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Flag of the United Federation of Planets

Source of most information from Memory Alpha, the Star Trek Wiki.

The United Federation of Planets (abbreviated as UFP and commonly referred to as the Federation) was an interstellar federal republic, composed of planetary governments that agreed to exist semi-autonomously under a single central government based on the principles of universal liberty, rights, and equality, and to share their knowledge and resources in peaceful cooperation, scientific development, space exploration and defensive purposes.

One of the most powerful interstellar states in known space, it encompassed 8,000 light years. The total number of formal member worlds was over one hundred and fifty.

Unlike its imperial rivals, who derived power from a single species subjugating other races, the Federation's various member worlds joined willingly and were equals in the Federation's democratic society. The Federation Starfleet was incorporated to maintain exploratory, scientific, diplomatic, and defense functions.

History

The Federation was founded in San Francisco, Earth in 2161. The seeds of the Federation were planted during the Bable Crisis of 2154, during which a temporary alliance was formed to search for a Romulan drone ship preying on local vessels. It was this that first brought together the four species that would found the Federation: Humans, Vulcans, Andorians and Tellarites. After the crisis, these four species remained together, founding the precursor to the Federation, called the Coalition of Planets, a year later. Other species soon joined: the Denobulans, the Rigelians, the Coridanites, and several others.Over the next several years, the ties between the members of the Coalition strengthened and became more structured, until, finally, in 2161, the Coalition became the Federation.

Although the Federation's intentions were peaceful, around it were other, more belligerent powers such as the Klingon and Romulan Empires. As it expanded through the admittance of more and more worlds, it came into conflict with these powers. In the 23rd century, its main adversary was the Klingon Empire, with war briefly erupting between the two in 2267, before being halted by the Organians. However, tensions eased considerably towards the end of the century, with the Khitomer Conference of 2293 being a substantial turning point.This conference saw the signing of the Khitomer Accords, which effectively ended hostile relations.

At the start of the 24th century, the Federation began an unprecedented period of peaceful exploration of the galaxy, free of major conflicts, as its main adversary of the previous century, the Klingon Empire, was now at peace with it. However, relations with the Romulans remained hostile, albeit at a low, 'cold war' level. There was also a series of local conflicts in the late 2340s, as the Federation came into contact with other militant races, such as the Cardassians, the Talarians, the Tholians and the Tzenkethi.

Then, however, the period of peaceful exploration came to an abrupt end. In 2365, the Federation encountered its single worst threat, in the cybernetic pseudo-race known as the Borg. One of the most powerful and destructive forces in the entire galaxy, the Borg invaded the Federation twice within less than a decade. They were unlike anything the Federation had ever encountered, and were only foiled by chance and resourcefulness. The Federation was thus schooled in the fact that, in the vast, unexplored reaches of the galaxy beyond what they knew, there were threats that they could not even imagine.

Then, in 2370, contact was made with the Dominion, the predominant ruling power over much of the Gamma Quadrant. After numerous skirmishes, misfortunes suffered by the Cardassian Union allowed for their eventual incorporation into the Dominion, and the subsequent Dominion invasion of the Alpha Quadrant. The Dominion/Cardassian forces were also joined by the reclusive but immensely powerful race known as the Breen. The ensuing war was the greatest crisis to be faced by the Federation, with the Federation forming an alliance with the Klingons and Romulans to defeat the Dominion. Although the Alliance eventually emerged victorious, many of the Federation's important member worlds, such as Betazed, Coridan, and Benzar, had been temporarily occupied before the Dominion's offensive could be turned back. Thousands of Federation Starfleet vessels and millions of lives were lost, in what turned out be, as of the late 24th century, the bloodiest conflict in Federation history. The most devastating and demoralizing offensive occurred in 2375, when the Breen hit the Federation at its heart, with a surprise attack on Starfleet Headquarters on Earth.

From 2371 to 2378, the USS Voyager was transported 70,000 light years away into the Delta Quadrant, having gone missing in the Badlands. During that time, the ship made more first contacts than any other Federation starship since the era of James T. Kirk. It has also expanded Starfleet's knowledge of the quadrant, and has dealt damage to the Borg every time they encountered them. The ship later went on to become the Federation flagship since 2380, and has led Starfleet in numerous battles against the Borg, until the Borg were finally defeated by 2389.

However, the aftermath of the Dominion and Borg invasions allowed the Federation to establish new relations with many of its former adversaries, the Romulans in particular. In 2379, cooperation took place between the crew of a Federation Starfleet vessel, the USS Enterprise-E, and Romulan forces to defeat the Reman Praetor Shinzon, whose actions would have destroyed both Earth and the Romulan Star Empire. It was hoped that this would mark the beginning of an end to hostility between the Federation and the Romulan Star Empire, marking the beginnings of détente with a traditional enemy of the Federation.

Location and Size

Federation space was located approximately thirty thousand light years from the core region of the galaxy. Earth, the capital planet of the Federation, was located less than ninety light years from the Beta Quadrant.

By 2373, the Federation's territory was spread across 8,000 light years, with a membership of over 150 worlds. Its major neighboring powers were the Klingon Empire, the Romulan Star Empire, the Cardassian Union, and the Ferengi Alliance. Other near-by powers included the First Federation, the Sheliak Corporate, the Son'a, the Talarians, the Tzenkethi, the Tholian Assembly, the Breen Confederacy, and the Xindi.

In 2377 and 2378, the location of the Federation was labeled in a map of the Milky Way Galaxy, that depicted the flight plan of the USS Voyager. In the chart, the Federation was located in the Orion Arm, next to the Alpha-Beta border.

Government

The Federation's government was structured as that of a representative republic, with its capital located on Earth.

The executive branch was responsible for the day-to-day management of the Federation. The democratically-elected Federation President was the head of this branch.The Federation President served as both the head of state and head of government; as chief executive officer of the government, the President determined most of the Federation's foreign policy, managed budgetary concerns, and served as supreme commander of the Federation's military forces.The President's office was located in the Earth city of Paris on the European continent.

The Federation Cabinet was a special executive committee to the President of the United Federation of Planets.

The fundamental political principles and laws of the Federation derived from two important documents:

  • The Federation Charter was the document ratified by the original members of the United Federation of Planets at the organization's founding in 2161. Caste-based discrimination was prohibited under the Charter.
  • The Federation Constitution incorporated a series of enumerated rights to which all sentient beings were regarded as being entitled, collectively referred to as the Guarantees. The Seventh Guarantee of the Federation Constitution protected individuals from self-incrimination, while the Twelfth Guarantee protected the rights of artists.

Starfleet

Starfleet command emblem
Starfleet was the deep-space exploratory and defensive service maintained by the United Federation of Planets. Its principal functions were the advancement of Federation knowledge about the galaxy, the advancement of Federation knowledge of science and technology, and the defense of the Federation. In addition, it also played a significant diplomatic role. As per its mandate of deep-space exploration, its personnel were frequently brought into contact with cultures and sentient species whose existences were previously unknown to the Federation. Federation Starfleet officers therefore acted as official representatives of the Federation in these cases. Also, Federation Starfleet vessels were frequently used to ferry ambassadors on diplomatic missions.

The size of Starfleet was estimated to be currently about 30,000 since the end of the Dominion War, based on the reasoning that the USS Hood's registry number was NCC-42296, and the USS Voyager was NCC-74656.

Known flagships

  • USS Enterprise (NCC-1701) (2250-2285) (destroyed)
  • USS Enterprise (NCC-1701-A) (2285-2293) (decommissioned)
  • USS Enterprise (NCC-1701-D) (2363-2371) (destroyed)
  • USS Enterprise (NCC-1701-E) (2373-2380)
  • USS Defiant (NX-74205) (during Dominion War, destroyed, replaced by second Defiant)
  • USS Voyager (NCC-74656) (2380-)

Key and known locations

  • Earth (Sol system)
  • Vulcan
  • Andoria
  • Tellar
  • Betazed
  • Alpha Centauri
  • Wolf 359
  • Mars (Sol system)
  • Sol
  • Bajor
  • Risa
  • Ratnia
  • Trillius Prime
  • Deep Space 9
  • Bajoran Wormhole
  • Pocketville

Species

  • Human
  • Vulcan
  • Andorian
  • Tellarite
  • Betazoid
  • Bajoran

and many more (members)

Not members, but inside territory

  • Klingon
  • Cardassian
  • Bajoran
  • Ratnians (NIMH genetically engineered rats and mice)
  • Ferengi

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