In the Star Trek universe, the Dominion is a superpower and dominant polity in the Gamma Quadrant of the Milky Way Galaxy. It invaded the Alpha Quadrant in 2373, before being repelled in 2375. Use this tag for questions concerning the Dominion and the Dominion War. Use this with the [star-trek] tag.
The Dominion is the dominant political and military power of the Gamma Quadrant of the Milky Way galaxy in the Star Trek universe. It consists of a number of different races. The uppermost stratum of Dominion society is occupied by a non-humanoid species, the "Founders".
Use this tag for questions about the politics, culture, science, military capabilities, and external relations of the Dominion, including its two-year-long war against the Federation and other Alpha / Beta Quadrant powers.
While some of the seeds for the war were planted in the Federation's uneasy encounters with the Cardassians in Star Trek: The Next Generation star-trek-tng, the war was developed and chronicled almost exclusively through Star Trek: Deep Space Nine star-trek-ds9.
The discovery in 2369 of a wormhole near the newly-liberated world of Bajor and the Cardassian-built / Starfleet-run outpost Deep Space Nine was the catalyst for contact between the cultures of the Alpha and Beta Quadrants and those of the so-called "Dominion". By linking two very distant regions of the galaxy, the wormhole became a prize, one that that renewed Cardassian interest in Bajor despite having abandoned its occupation of the planet only several months earlier.
Rumours of an overarching political structure in the Gamma Quadrant known as the "Dominion" began to filter through to the Alpha Quadrant as early as 2370 — for instance, through Ferengi bartender Quark, who had been conducting business with Gamma Quadrant traders who complained of strict regulations imposed by the Dominion.
The Dominion is ruled by the "Founders", who,
like Odo, are Changelings. They deeply distrust "solids" and maintain various races of solids as expendable underclasses.
The Founders use the Jem'Hadar — a warrior race engineered to be addicted to an intravenous narcotic in order to control them — as shock troops. The Dominion also maintains a class of civil servants, the Vorta, who worship the Founders as gods. Various Vorta clones (including many of a male named Weyoun) served as ambassadors of the Dominion within the Alpha and Beta Quadrants.
The War (2373—2375)
WEYOUN 4: The Dominion has endured for over two thousand years, and will continue to endure...long after the Federation has crumbled into dust.
Year 2372, from DS9 : "To the Death"
Relations between the Federation and the Dominion were sour from the outset, as the Dominion maintained isolationist policies and viewed Federation exploration of the Gamma Quadrant as a violation of the sanctity of its space. The situation deteriorated further when the Cardassian Union found itself in a brief war with the Klingon Empire, destabilizing the political climate within the Alpha Quadrant. The Klingon conflict pressed the Cardassians into inviting an alliance with the Dominion, allowing the Dominion to gain a foothold in the Alpha Quadrant. Soon, thousands of Dominion ships would enter the Alpha Quadrant through the wormhole. This set in motion a series of events that included full-scale war, beginning in 2373.
As the Dominion War progressed, the two camps eventually stabilized as a Federation—Klingon Empire—Romulan Star Empire alliance on one side and a Dominion—Cardassian Union—Breen Confederacy alliance on the other. The costly war finally ended in 2375 with the Battle of Cardassia Prime, where the Federation alliance proved victorious. Major consequences of the war for the Prime Timeline were
the weakening of the Dominion's ability to wage total war, and
the infection of the Changelings with a morphogenic virus engineered by Section 31
the loss of 807 million Cardassian lives; the occupation of Cardassia Prime by the Federation, Klingon Empire, and Romulan Star Empire; the dissoluton of the Cardassian Union; and the end of Cardassia's status as a major Alpha Quadrant power
- the rise of the Remans, previously subjugated but distinguishing themselves in the war, as a powerful political force in the Romulan Senate.
Notable events during the war were the annihilation of the Maquis by the Dominion, the reoccupation of Bajor and the reclamation of Deep Space Nine by the Cardassians (actions that were assisted and sponsored by the Dominion), the mining of the wormhole by Starfleet, and
a surprise attack on Earth by the Breen.
Both sides committed morally questionable acts. Apart from Section 31's actions, Captain Benjamin Sisko conspired to
murder a Romulan senator and make it appear as if the Dominion were responsible, thus bringing the Romulans into the war on the side of the Federation.