Recently, I've decided to make it a personal task to watch through ALL of Star Trek. I grew up on TNG and watched it whenever I could. I mention this because I have a distant recollection of many of the stories I loved from TNG, but now that I'm more thoroughly watching through the original series, I'm starting to have personally "haunting" questions that make me curious about the Star Trek universe and why certain events played out the way that they did.

I've noticed that in TOS throughout at least the first season alien races tend to fall into two classifications-- humanoid races that, in regards to intelligence and strength, are much on-par with humans. This includes Vulcans, Romulans & Klingons and a few other incidental races that come and go as needed for a particular story.

There is also a second set of alien races that are not slightly but are rather significantly evolved beyond humans. These races tend to appear in one episode, do their "unbelievable" acts and conclude the episode assuming we never hear from them again, often for the sake and safety of humanity. These races include the people of Talos IV that could manipulate the perceptions of minds, the beings from "The Squire of Gothos" that could control entire planets and the Organians which were excessively peaceable people that were capable of seizing up all weaponry aboard all Klingon and starfleet vessels in the vicinity of their system.


Much of my knowledge of the Star Trek universe comes from my childhood watching of TNG. In TNG we saw multiple interactions of the Enterprise crew with Q and his race. The Q was, to my knowledge, the only major race encountered that was significantly more advanced that humans. This is quite a juxtaposition to season #1 of TOS, where in every few episodes we see a new race that has unbelievable powers capable of doing nearly anything imaginable.

It is my understanding that the Q stayed out of the galactic war with the Borg because they believed in letting the rest of the universe play out at its own pace, in its own way. This is why they never wiped out the Borg or provided limited protection for the United Federation of Planets.

However, as outlined above, in TOS many exceptionally intelligent and capable races existed that could take control of people, manipulate space/time or simply do whatever they wanted to do.

Where were these races in the war against the Borg? Were any of them ever contacted by starfleet and asked for assistance? Were any of them assimilated? Were they just out of site and out of mind as if they weren't part of the galaxy?

In my opinion, from the perspective of TOS there were NUMEROUS races that seemed capable of stopping or potentially destroying the Borg. Where were they during the time of The Next Generation and its subsequent movies?

I'm not really asking for a speculative answer, however, I am curious if this was ever addressed in any post-TOS material whether on the television show, in comic books or novels.

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    The Organians, for instance? I'm guessing they chose to keep themselves out of the conflicts of child races.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 6, 2016 at 16:36
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    Even though the Q "stayed out of the galactic war with the Borg" don't forget that it was the Q who hastened federation contact with the Borg in the first place. memory-alpha.wikia.com/wiki/Q_Who_%28episode%29
    – Mykewlname
    Commented Jun 6, 2016 at 16:53
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    @Mykewlname - Indeed. Although it's arguable that he did that to help the Federation. If he hadn't, the Borg would have turned up unannounced a few years later and immediately taken over the Alpha Quadrant
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 6, 2016 at 16:57
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    Perhaps the other advanced races were aware that the Q were involved and chose to stay away instead of getting drawn into a p*ssing match with a god.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 6, 2016 at 16:58
  • @RLH : I grew up on TNG and watched it whenever I could. It sounds to me like you should cast a vote here: meta.scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/9725
    – Praxis
    Commented Jun 6, 2016 at 17:47

2 Answers 2


One of the key societal traits of the "god-like aliens" that the crew of the Enterprise encounter is one of deep withdrawal from the affairs of the races that remain in the galaxy. Q was relatively unique in that he/they were both powerful and still wanting to remain in engaged with the junior races and even then, he was a single rogue individual looking to get his yuks from us.

It's helpful to compare this with the Douwd (in hiding), the Thasians (hidden), the Talosians (hidden), the Organians (hidden), the Metrons (in hiding), the Prophets (obsessed with a single planet) and the Edo God (obsessed with a single planet) all of whom would potentially be good allies, but in reality probably wouldn't care. Simply put, there really aren't that many potential god-allies that can be called upon to help the Federation against the Borg.

On top of that, when advanced aliens do step into conflicts (the Organian Peace Treaty being a prime example), they're just as likely to view the Federation as being in need of a smacked bottom, in much the same way that you'd punish two misbehaving children without undertaking a lengthy investigation into who's most in the wrong. True, the Borg might get put back in their box, but there's at least as high a chance that humanity will end up being confined to Earth for the foreseeable future.

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    I wonder if Sargon would help. Commented Jun 6, 2016 at 19:15
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    didnt the q aso want to smack humanity?#
    – Thomas
    Commented Jun 7, 2016 at 0:17
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    @Thomas - Not really. The Q could see that in the distant future, humanity would (possibly) surpass even their own powers. That made us interesting, given that the 24th Century seems to be something of a nexus of events for humankind's survival.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 7, 2016 at 0:27
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    @Thomas - We really only have Q's word for that. And someone whose alias is "The God of Lies" possibly isn't the most reliable source of information.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 7, 2016 at 9:39
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    God-like aliens withdrawn from the affairs of other races! Where do these crazy Star Trek writers get their mad ideas from eh. Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 12:00

There was at least one example in TNG of capable species that could have taken out the Borg. In the episode "The Survivors" a being called a Douwd had the power to exterminate an entire race of beings with a single thought.


In the case of Kevin, Picard thought it was best to leave him alone after their encounter with the Enterprise D. I'm sure the fear was that Kevin could have wiped out the entire federation just as easily as he did the Husnock. I don't think the Federation would have been too interested in knocking on his door and asking him to wipe out the Borg, nor any of the other beings that the Federation has encountered over the years that were equally capable like the Metrons or the Organians. I think the specific reason they would not want to ask for help is because of the Prime Directive.

The Federation does not interfere with the evolution of other species, so to pursue a course of action that would enable another species to interfere with their own evolution would not be consistent with their founding principles.

One could make an argument that the Prime directive does not apply to the preservation of Earth as people like Captain Kirk willingly time traveled into the past to save earth before. But in the 24th century the Federation has evolved and most likely would not be willing to say go into the future to retrieve technology to defeat the Borg. Nor would they be willing to ask for help from an advanced species whose existence was not directly threatened by the Borg.

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    I may need to modify my question, but this (rather good) response does leave one thing unaddressed-- the Borg attempts to assimilate everyone, not just planets within the UFP. So civilizations like the Organians could have very-likely had a run-in with the Borg. Considering their response to the Kirk and the Klingons, it seems rational to assume they would have attempted some way of inhibiting the Borg from being any further destructive. This is why I ask, were these races considered simply out of mind when these stories were crafted.
    – RLH
    Commented Jun 6, 2016 at 18:04
  • We don't know the extent of the Metrons' or Organians' power. They wouldn't necessarily have the ability to eliminate an entire species with a thought, as the Douwd did. Commented Jun 6, 2016 at 19:18
  • "...so to pursue a course of action that would enable another species to interfere with their own evolution would not be consistent with their founding principles." This sentence fragment seems off. The Borg are actively trying to interfere with the evolution of humanity and other Federation citizens by assimilating them. That is completely counter to the Prime Directive (clearly, the Borg don't have a Prime Directive). But, you make it sound like the Borg are part of the natural evolution of civilizations that are members of the Federation with this assertion.
    – Ellesedil
    Commented Jun 6, 2016 at 21:01
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    @ellesedil - The Borg do have a Prime Directive, just not the same one as the Federation :-)
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 7, 2016 at 11:37
  • In the episode of Star Trek in which the Enterprise travels to the home planet of the Organisms, they state they are as far evolved past us we are past bacteria, and as such they find our mere presence unpleasant. If for that reason alone, I would think they would want to be left alone...would u get involved in the pandemonium that results when an ant bed is disturbed?
    – Harlemme
    Commented Dec 15, 2016 at 5:03

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