Warning: contains spoilers for Star Trek #7!Star Trek has revealed an unexpected consequence of the Dominion War: Sisko’s name has become an expletive in Cardassian culture. As the commanding officer of Deep Space Nine, Captain Sisko was instrumental in many of the War’s biggest battles – which often included the Cardassians, and as revealed in IDW Publishing’s Star Trek #7, this has had a generational impact on the species, as they curse his very name.
The issue is written by Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly, drawn by Mike Feehan, colored by Lee Loughridge and lettered by Clayton Cowles. The clone Emperor Kahless of the Klingon Empire seeks the Orb of Destruction, desiring it to power his Godkiller Array. Working with Lieutenant Shaxs, Sisko learns the Orb is most likely on the Cardassian homeworld. Sisko then orders the USS Theseus to Cardassia Prime. While on the way, readers are treated to an official Starfleet memo. Titled “The War History of Benjamin Sisko,” it recounts his war record against the Borg and the Dominion, listing specific battles and their outcomes. After revealing he is Starfleet’s most decorated officer, a diplomatic advisory note further reveals that Sisko’s name has become an expletive among the youth of Cardassia, and visitors should avoid saying it.
Cardassians Use Sisko’s Name as a Curse Word
Captain Sisko’s history with the Cardassians is long and complicated. For nearly a century, the Cardassians occupied the planet Bajor, oppressing its citizens and using them for slave labor. After the Cardassians withdrew, the Bajorans invited the Federation to establish a presence, and Starfleet took over a Cardassian station in orbit of the planet, rechristening it Deep Space Nine and putting Sisko in charge. Later, the galaxy’s only known stable wormhole was discovered nearby, suddenly making the station of great strategic importance. On the other side of the wormhole, Starfleet discovered the Dominion, a fascist empire who declared war on the Federation. In time, the Cardassians would ally themselves with the Dominion. Sisko fought in many of the War’s biggest battles, but he also made devastating choices – while this makes him a hero to some, to many others, it makes him a pariah.
Sisko Is a Cardassian Pariah
The events of IDW’s new flagship Star Trek comic take place just a few years after the end of the Dominion War, at a time when the wounds were still raw and scars had yet to heal. Perhaps no other species lost more in the Dominion War than the Cardassians; they once sat at the center of a mighty empire, but they lost every bit of it thanks to the war. Compounding the problem is that the average Cardassian had no say in this – the decision to join the Dominion was made for them. In a short amount of time, the Cardassians lost an empire and culture that took centuries to build; this has proved a bitter pill for them to swallow, so it makes sense that Sisko would come to embody a cultural scapegoat.
Sisko’s name being used as an expletive speaks volumes to the chances of peace in the future between the Federation and the Cardassians. The youth of Cardassia hate Captain Sisko, so much that his name is an expletive. If the young people think this of Sisko, what do they think of the rest of the Federation and Starfleet? If the lingering problems between the two powers are not worked out, this resentment could grow into a full-blown movement, one that could reignite the fires of war. It’s a mark of Sisko’s influence on the entire galaxy that an entire culture now uses his name with such disgust – something which is likely to blow up in his face as Kahless continues his mission to kill Star Trek‘s gods.
Star Trek #7 is on sale now from IDW Publishing!