In the episode "War Without End":

Jeffrey Sinclair, Commander Ivanova, Ambassador Delenn, Marcus and Captain Sheridan travel back in time to Babylon 4.

I did not understand the reasoning explained in a scene explained by Jeffrey Sinclair to Garibaldi at all.

In the scene, Jeffrey Sinclair left Garibaldi a private voice message, stating he did not tell Garibaldi he was on Babylon 5 because Jeffrey believed that Garibaldi would either try to stop him or join him on the mission.


Commander Ivanova was allowed to go on the mission and she was equally as important in the timeline as Garibaldi was.

What was the reasoning behind Jeffrey Sinclair not wanting Mike Garibaldi to not join them on the War Without End mission?

  • 9
    This is 100% answered in the following episode, War Without End, Part 2.
    – Izkata
    Commented Jan 10, 2013 at 0:52
  • 1
    oh I'm a dil-brain, I think I just figured it out.
    – Jared
    Commented Jan 10, 2013 at 0:54
  • 1
    You can answer it yourself if you like ;)
    – Izkata
    Commented Jan 10, 2013 at 1:03

4 Answers 4


If memory serves, Sinclair didn't want Garibaldi to follow him because Garibaldi also traveled with Sinclair to Babylon 4 in Babylon Squared, back in the first season, while Ivanova did not.

So Garibaldi would not have survived another trip there and back through the time field, or at the very least he would have aged like Sinclair did, since both of them were previously exposed to it without any protection.

  • 6
    With the addendum that Sinclair wasn't certain that anything would happen, but he didn't want to take the chance.
    – Izkata
    Commented Jan 10, 2013 at 13:53

Garibaldi would have insisted on not only going with, but also on staying with Sinclair throughout the mission.

Since the mission was, for Sinclair, to go back in time and become Valen, and Valen arrived alone, Sinclair could not risk Garibaldi going back with and altering the nature of the Minbari. Further, Garibaldi would not be able to fit in to Minbari society even if altered to look Minbari.

Plus, there's also

the aging issue. Garibaldi had spent as much, if not more, time in the time field during the first appearance. A return trip would have been as hard, if not harder, on Garibaldi, than it would be for Sinclair.

And also, the issue of Michael being prone to act first and think later...

Michael would likely have KO'd Sinclair to "save" him, and would have made a very poor Valen. And might not have been able to make the transition to being Minbari. We know Sinclair is strong in whatever it is that makes the transition possible, because the Triluminary lit up for him. We don't know that Garibaldi is.

Bringing Michael Garibaldi is a risk to the mission on just too many levels.

  • 1
    For that last spoiler, it's just because of the programming for that triluminary. It comes up again in Season 5.
    – Izkata
    Commented Jan 12, 2013 at 4:15

It had to do with the animosity between the two actors. O'Hare was seriously mentally ill, with at least two serious illnesses, which unfortunately went out of control during the season. This made his behaviour bizarre and volatile and strained his relationship with the other cast members, who suspected that he was mentally ill but did not know what or how severe his illnesses were.

For whatever reason, Jerry Doyle made fun out of his symptoms and kept triggering them with intention, at least according to JMS' account. JMS did not want to put the works on O'Hare's final episodes in danger and decided to keep them apart.

While it is true that both men were competing for the attention of Andrea Thompson, Thompson and Doyle did not get married until 1995, a year after O'Hare already left.

See this tweet from Straczynski on the matter:

screenshot of the tweet

  • So, this is a Doyle answer? Commented Oct 27, 2020 at 2:01
  • @Acccumulation Its a Jerry Doyle answer at least. Commented Apr 11, 2021 at 16:49

These are very good in-universe explanations. However, I believe that in JMS's original plan, Garibaldi was supposed to return to Babylon 4 (I have no evidence for this, though).

Michael O'Hare (Sinclair), as we now know, suffered from mental health problems, which led him to frequent trouble with his colleagues. A particularly acute symptom of this was his tendency to hit on Andrea Thompson (Talia Winters), who was at the time married to Jerry Doyle (Garibaldi). By the end of Season 1, Doyle hated O'Hare, and when O'Hare returned in Season 3, Garibaldi refused even to be in the same room as him. This is why Sinclair leaves only a video message for Garibaldi, and does not meet him.

Were it not for this, I expect that Zathras' time-stabilizing bracelets would have been enough for Garibaldi, and Sinclair would have been able to explain the necessity of it being him, not Garibaldi, to take B4 back in time. The two were, in-universe, very good friends, and I imagine a tear-jerking farewell between them.

As it was, JMS came up with some excellent explanations. He had, after all, devised "trapdoors" for each and every character, in light of the unpredictability of television.

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