From:Vetlor
To:*Galactic-Enquirer
Stardate:20020605.0526
Subject:Cardassians Decry Federation Imperialism

The face of Arek Teknav fills the screen. Though in the past, despite his age, he has displayed a youthful vigor in his public appearances, his age now clearly shows -- the wrinkles upon his face multiplied a hundred-fold, his white hair now disheveled, heavy bags beneath his eyes.

"Nelvet," the aged officer says, "Leader of the Cardassian Union...is dead." A long pause ensues as he peers toward the camera in silence. Finally, he continues: "The assassin was a Federation intelligence officer, and he has been apprehended and is awaiting trial."

The Admiral brings his hand to his head, massaging his temples for a moment before he continues his address. "What is more," he says, "The Federation has deployed a large assault force, which will be arriving at Terok Nor in less than a day." He sighs heavily, exasperation clearly written upon his face.

"In recent months, the Union has sent diplomats to the Federation seeking peace, and they have been ignored, and kept in waiting for weeks at a time," Teknav continues, "The Federation, self-proclaimed champions of peace, have done all that they can to prevent it between our two peoples. Not only the Cardassians, however, but the Klingon Empire, too, has felt the scorpion's sting of the Federation's treachery, their lies and false claims of wanting only peace. These are not the actions of a peaceful people -- they are the actions of an imperialistic, and warlike people. War without honor. War for the sake of war."

"The new Cardassian government," the Admiral says, "which I have been asked to lead until a suitable replacement has been found for the late Nelvet,has shown no hostility whatsoever to the Federation. We have sought only peace, we have strived for a cease-fire to this terrible war which was pushed on by the weak, civilian government which until recently had control over our great Union. And yet, the Federation refuses our pleas for peace. We have moved our fleets away from Federation territory, as a sign of this desire, and the Federation attacks us in spite -- knowing we cannot defend. The Federation, it seems, no longer holds to its goals of peace and harmony in the galaxy, and has become no better than the Dominion or the Borg, wanting nothing more than to conquer and consume. Resistance, they say, is futile."

"I send this message now, to all the citizens of the Galaxy, to tell you this: The Cardassian Union will not lay down. We shall not retreat. We shall resist you to the last man, President Maxwell. We shall defend our territory with our very lives -- the lives that you so capriciously waste. But know this: The Cardassian Union will not strike back. We shall not descend to your level of barbarism. We shall make our last stand at Terok Nor, and I believe that we shall perish in doing so. But I pray that our sacrifice will act as a resounding call to the Galaxy: you may be next.

"I challenge all the great powers of this sector to rise up against the Federation. I shall die tomorrow, and I hope that you will at least consider the dying wishes of an old man: "Cease trade with the Federation. Deny them access to your space. Band together after I am gone, to challenge the United Federation of Planets to cast off their cowl of death and destruction, and open themselves to what they once stood for: Peace. Peace in the face of adversity. Peace above all else."

"To my wife, and my children: I love you dearly. I pray that I will not be forgotten after I am gone. Thank you."