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Close to the end of the Homefront episode, we hear captain Sisko say that it would have been much better if Odo had never found The Great Link and other changelings. Odo agrees.

How could that be true? What would that change? The Dominion / changelings / The Great Link was a super power in Gamma Quadrant, responsible for destroying or acquiring hundreds of other civilisations and always hungry for new expansions. For me, it would change next to nothing if Odo had never contacted The Great Link because I assume that the Dominion invasion of the Alpha Quadrant was always just a matter of time.

Not to mention that it wasn't Odo's decision to seek for The Great Link, as, if I remember correctly, that desire was "implanted" in him by The Great Link and was actually initiated / required by The Great Link to force Odo (and other changelings sent "away") to return home. Additionally, if Odo hadn't found his relatives, he wouldn't be able to provide Federation with all the information he has possessed by each join with The Great Link or any other changeling.

So, to me, the words spoken by Sisko are completely wrong and the fact that Odo agrees on them is a screenplay hole.

Am I wrong in that assessment?

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  • Would it matter to whom, please? To Odo? To his comrades? To Starfleet? To the Great LKink as a whole, or to any part of that? Dec 22, 2023 at 22:16

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Yes, for two reasons:

1. Odo's Health

In DS9 'Broken Link', Odo develops a disease that was inflicted by the Changelings forcing him to join the Great Link. Had Odo not done that, it is likely he would have died.

This, of course, was not known at the time of 'Homefront' as the events of 'Broken Link' took place after 'Homefront' (which was S4 E11; 'Broken Link' was S4 E26).

2. Leaking of information

This is evidenced in the following excerpt from Memory Alpha:

At the very least, there exists a "hive mind" among the species when joined with the Great Link. (DS9: "The Search, Part II", "Broken Link", "Sacrifice of Angels", "Chimera") For instance, Odo once commented, "During the Link, I sensed that the other Changelings were trying to hide things from me... faces, names." (DS9: "Broken Link")

As you say, the Dominion's invasion seemed inevitable. Nevertheless, Odo had collected a great deal of information about the Dominion's opponents; providing this information to them through the 'hive mind' would probably be inevitable and provide the Dominion with an advantage.

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    Either I'm missing something or both your arguments refers to a later episode, which means, that has no special connection to events discussed in "Homefront" episode perspective. Referring to later events is a scenario error, a kind of anachronism. Again, either I'm missing something, or nothing of what you pointed out here was "available" at the time of Sisko comment in the end of "Homefront". And thus, your answer should not be "Yes" according to me. Feel free to correct my possibly incorrect understanding of your answer.
    – trejder
    Jan 20, 2016 at 15:20
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    @trejder agreed the first argument wasn't available at the time of 'Homefront' although it does relate to the question in the title. The second reason though, although not explicitly known at the time, would have been a reasonable speculation Jan 20, 2016 at 22:39
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Sisko was right. Had he not discovered the wormhole, thus leading to him and his crew meeting the Founders, then the events unfolding wouldn't have happened as they did.

The Founders wouldn't have known about the Federation without the wormhole being discovered. So whilst they hated all solids, any such contact would have been centuries in the future. We had no on-screen evidence that the Founders had transwarp or some other "faster than warp" technology. And with transwarp, why would they just attack the Federation? Any "solid" species would have been a target, not just humans, Vulcans, etc.

Moreover, Sisko was lamenting. He thought his that own father was a Changeling. He knew that a war was inevitable, and a war that would have surpassed conflicts with the Klingons or Romulans from the past in scope and destruction. Had Odo not found his people, then any such conflict wouldn't have happened, most likely, in Sisko's lifetime. Or perhaps ever, even in the 31st century and the half-Bajoran/Cardassian president's term.

A person can lament something that is inevitable. And I doubt the Dominion attack was truly inevitable, if events hadn't unfolded as they did. If a WW2 German army general joined the Nazi Party in 1932, and saw his troops die in an Allied bombing raid on Berlin, could he not still feel grief, resentment or anger, because he knew that war was inevitable given Hitler's goals? Doesn't seem very human, or even a rational expectation.

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