In Star Trek: Enterprise, the Xindi Reptilians secretly went into Earth's past to destroy humans using a bioweapon. They did this secretly because Xindi council rejected the use of this bioweapon.

Now, the question is: They wanted to fully eliminate humans (to save their future generations from humans). So, what was the problem with bioweapon? It was no different than the Xindi super-weapon, which was going to destroy Earth.

3 Answers 3


A physical weapon like the super-weapon is much more specific and reliable than a bioweapon. There are very, very few diseases with 100% mortality, and not all of them are viral or otherwise weaponizable. Say they had managed to create a virus with a 95% mortality rate. They release it on Earth, where there are (I'll guess) 10 billion people at that point in time. Assuming they completely fail to contain the spread and don't manage to find a cure, that leaves, worst case (for Humanity), 500 million people still alive. 500 million. Plus a majority of those humans who live off-world: colonists, scientists. shippers, etc. All with a HUGE grudge against the Xindi. Now, say the humans find a cure, and/or quarantine the virus successfully. That could drop the total percent of the human population wiped out to 50, 25, 5 percent. Potentially fewer. Long story short, a bioweapon is not reliable.

Furthermore, a bioweapon is dangerous. Bacteria mutate. A lot. Viruses mutate more. If the bioweapon infects 10 billion people, and in each person its proteins are transcoded who knows how many millions or billions of times, what are the chances it mutates into something that does affect the Xindi and somehow gets back to them? They could well end up doing as much damage to themselves as to the Humans.

On the other hand, they create a superweapon, go destroy the planet, all 10 billion humans on-world die, and they can easily hunt down the rest. Quick and clean, no risk to them.

  • The time frame was 2004. That makes the population about 6.3 billion. But I see you were thinking if they used the bioweapon in the 22nd century.
    – user15742
    Jul 25, 2013 at 22:04
  • Minor point of fact, viruses (especially RNA viruses) have a drastically higher mutation rate versus bacteria.
    – Nick T
    Nov 18, 2014 at 17:22

The Xindi weren't really bad or evil. They were simply convinced by a third party that humans were a significant threat to their existence. They likely had moral objections to biological warfare due to the fact that it kills much more slowly with disease rather than an instantaneous explosion or vaporization.

  • From where you've got specs of Xindi bioweapon? Remember bioweapon of Star Trek: Nemesis... Death was quick..
    – user931
    Mar 18, 2012 at 22:01
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    @SachinShekhar I wouldn't really consider the WMD in Nemesis to be "biological", it damages biological stuff but is not itself biological. It's sort of like a neutron bomb.
    – Nick T
    Mar 19, 2012 at 2:51
  • Yup.. you're right.. reptilians were doing medical test in Earth's past.. probably, they were upto some kind of disease.
    – user931
    Mar 19, 2012 at 3:00

I believe they never intended to destroy all of humanity. I believe there is mention early on that destroying Earth would effectively neutralize humanity as a threat, so they would not have to commit genocide. It was only the reptilians and the insectoids that were calling for genocide. A bioweapon has a huge possibility of spreading to everywhere, as panicking humans flee to other colonies.

  • 1
    I don't agree... even a small group of humans could advance to a point from which they could destroy an entire race..
    – user931
    Mar 19, 2012 at 0:58
  • @Sachin I agree, but -I think- the xindi were told that destroying earth would save them, not wiping out humanity. I will see if i can watch the xindi saga again and cite some sources.
    – Chris
    Mar 19, 2012 at 2:20
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    That's not true.. Reptilians were also planning to wipe out every human colony in space...
    – user931
    Mar 19, 2012 at 2:46
  • Very true, but the council is all of the races. Turns out i was terribly horribly wrong, the Council was told that they needed to wipeout humanity. Kind of blows away my answer. :)
    – Chris
    Mar 19, 2012 at 3:09

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