The weapon was designed by an unknown culture. It was a binary weapon. the goal was to create a weappon that the Kliges'chee technology would not recognize as a threat until it was too late.
Both are in the form of virulent but largely harmless viruses.
Section 1 of the binary virus was very virulent and so harmless that the introduction of went unnoticed.
Section 2 was not succesfully introduced to the Kliges'chee until the Discovery happened across the damaged delivery capsule.
Once introduced, the second virus began to spread. It had about a one-week incubation period and after wards was 97% fatal to the Kliges'chee who had it.
The Kliges'chee WeaknessEdit
The Kliges'chee are a true, nearly perfect mass-mind. What the people of Known space tend to percieve as individual Kliges'chee are actually 150kg cells of the Kliges'chee body.
The Kliges'chee had problems considering each "unit" individually, and indeed were loathe to do so. This perception of individual "units" as individuals was, in the Kligess'chee mind, what they were fighting to exterminate.
Because of the self-contained nature of the Kliges'chee "cells", and the fact that information flowed between them telepathically, Kliges'chee "Individuals" were swapped between the entities (Callled Klies'chee Fleets) freely and without a lot of conscious awareness.
This tendency to be casual about which Kliges'chee Cell/Unit/Individual belonged with which Fleet Entity, and to be casual inside ships, buildings and communities of the personal space and belongings of any given drone, made the Kliges'cchee enormously vulnerable to disease.
The Kliges'chee "Zone" imploded. The mass die off removed a stellar power that was as big and technologically competitive with all of known space combined.
People formerly under oppression by the Kliges'chee found themselves free to explore space annd meet other survivors of Kliges'chee agression. Abandoned Kliges'chee equipment taught an entire generation of engineeers how to build starships and modern equipment.
Hailey considered himself to be guilty of a horrible war-crime. In fact the name of this article describes his view of the event. As the GM/Writer, I am morally neutral in the matter.
Hailey considered this evidence of his utter failure as a Starship Captain and a human being. After this and the death off Soren the Elder, Hailey began a quest to return to earth to sacrifice himself on the alter of taking responsibility. He was not consscious of this, but this is an effort to treat the psychic pain he feels for having launched the weapon.
Starfleet Command Board of ReviewEdit
The Board of review ruled that Hailey's actions were understandable in light of his emotional state, condition and position, but that launching the weapon impulsively did not reflect the best practices or live up to the Standards of Starfleet.
Translated this means they declined to consider it a war-crime, but did consider an act of poor judgement. An Active duty officer would be expected to resign at such a finding. If he didn't he'd be assigned to administrative duties at Starfleet Command or at the Starbase closes to his home world. the black mark would neutraalize his carrer subsequently unti he decided to leave.
Hailey had already resigned his commisssion at this point, rendering the issue moot.
Starlfeet in the fieldEdit
Reaction is strongly divided into two camps.
One side says that Hailey did a horrible thing but ended the war, saving Starfleet and Civilian lives. The Ane are solid proponents of this poiint of view, as are many who served in combat against the Kligs'chee.
The Ane view was the Kliges'chee themselves were a genocide machine. They had killed a dozen or more races including the Sharidin Empire and the Sharidin themselves. How much murder do you condone before you stop the murder machine? They had violated the rights and lives of uncountable billions by using the races maker on other races. In short if a species needed to die, they were it.
The Klingons view Hailey's actions especially favorably.
The other side felt that Hailey had committed at the very least, an unjustified and horrible act. More extreme opinions along this arc are that Hailey stained the reputation of Starfleet and Earth with his action.
The official position is that Hailey's actions are a regrettable failure, one to be learned from. This part of the Discovery's cruise is used as an object leesson in Starfleet academy, and by command uptraining in the field.
Starfleet officers who were not present in the Klingon theater fighting the Kliges'chee, and those who have come up since tend to view Hailey and his actions negatively.
Hailey's action was a public relations disaster for Starfleet, creating severe negative impressions and vocal protests against Hailey in particular and Starfleet in General.
The Public narrative and impression on Earth is that Earth is making progresss towards a better society. In Popular media people of the Pre-Federation age, especially during the Dark times of the 21sr century, are portrayed as people in the grips of greed, racism, violence, short sightedness, self-centerness, they stand in as personal icons for the things that 24th century Earth people see themselves as surpassing and leaving behind.
Reserved for special villain status are those historical figures who committed mass violence sometimes for criminal or self centered ends, or driven by misguided idealism and lack of awareness.
In the Public Mind, Hailey beccame seen as a throw-back to the bad old days of conquest, imperialism, exploitation and murder.
It is said by people who discuss such things, that Hailey's actions have set back earth's attempt to consciously build a better society by centuries. Some believe that Hailey's actions reveal systemic flaws in Starfleet and perhaps the Federation itself.
Still more extreme people site Hailey's action as proof that humanity is inherently violent, racist, expansionistic and imperialistic in nature. Some propose removing all humans from Starfleet or disbanding the organization all together calling it a well decorated front with nice propaganda for human conquest of the Galaxy.
Very few civilians have a favorable view of Hailey or his action.
- Vulcan - Viewed Hailey's action as a regrettable but understood human malfunction. A disaster to be learned from. Hailey himself is views as an example of a damaged, poorly treated, and poorly managed emotional state. Another reason to urge humanity to be reaasonable with more emphasis than currently.
- Andorians - Viewed Hailey as Iconic of the tragedy of war - a reason to remain ever on guard both against external threats and against the more subtle and insidious threats inside the hearts of those who defend. The Andorian wording is shorter, more elegant and poetic in describing the emotional implications, reflecting the deep Andorian thought and meditation on such issues.
- Tellarites - are just surprised that Hailey fired the weapon having no idea whatever what it did. This decision appears foolish and almost inexplicably random to the Tellarites. The Consequences are iconic for the possible consequences off leaping before you look.
- Kentaurus - The people of Alpha Centari, having survived their own bio-warfare period were horrified and non-plussed at Hailey's decision. The Kentauran government took the hardest line in favor of treating the matter criminally, and demanded Bio-ethics classes be upgraded in Starfleet Academy and for command ratings.
- The Ane Confederation - The Ane surprised everyone by coming out staunchly in favor of Hailey's actions, and in support of Hailey. Falan, First Speaker of the All (and only living Federation signer.) was Hailey's advocate during testimony in front of the Federation Council and in his review boards. The Ane surprised people further when they expressed sympathy that Hailey was emotionally injured doing accidentally what the Ane Confederation was working on doing deliberately.
- The Cardassian Romulan Alliance expressed surprise and gratitude that a Federation Starship Captain was capbable of such an action. Hailey is informally considered a hero by most of the Romulan people, the exception is among the most hard line Surakians.
- The League of Non-Aligned Worlds took the event and used it as a hammer at every opportunity to try and break the image of the Federation as a group of happy, well meaning good guy worlds having a club - and show that the Federation is really a pretty mask for the rapacious and violent Human Empire.
- The Ferengi viewed the collapse of the Kliges'chee as an opportunity to sell Starships and weapons to newly freed Kliges'chee subjects. They also looked for the Kliges'chee to see if the survivors were interests in subontracting medical care to a member the Ferengi Commercial Medical Association.