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What is Task Force Sierra?

Task Force Sierra, or TFS for short, is a multi-jurisdictional, intelligence operations role-play unit. In English, this means that TFS is a unit comprised of agents from several different agencies, both civilian and military. This unit primarily runs deep-cover, infiltration, and surveillance operations against Section 31.

Where does TFS operate?

The base of operations for TFS is located within the area of the Tybiiran Complex, inside of GOLD Fleet's jurisdiction just inside the Federation/Gorn Hegemony border. As such, it is part of GOLD Fleet's administrative umbrella.

However, the nature and scope of TFS' missions may take its operatives across fleet and even governmental boundaries.

What is TFS' goal?

The primary mission objective, at this time, has 3 parts:

Patrol the Krima Expeditionary Force operational area in order to collect additional information on Section 31 activities in this area;

Pursue leads from this information into nearby sectors as needed;

Interfere, when possible, with Section 31 operations without compromising operational security and secrecy.

Essentially, this means that TFS is authorized to gather information on Section 31's activities and disrupt them if possible, even if it passes outside of GOLD Fleet's Area of Operation.

What kind of characters is TFS looking for?

Task Force Sierra is a unique unit within the Federation. Since its primary quarry- Section 31- is a unit that crosses traditional internal/external boundaries in its own operations, a more heterogeneous mixture of personnel is needed to pursue them.

Task Force Sierra will be slightly smaller in size than a typical starship or star base; ideally, TFS will have between 5-8 members, comprising the different services as well as providing a wide range of expertise.

The following personnel should be included in TFS:

  • A Star Fleet Security and Investigative Services officer (SECIS); (Commanding Officer of unit- CO)
  • A Star Fleet Marine Corps officer;
  • A Star Fleet Naval officer;
  • A Star Fleet Intelligence officer (OSFI);
  • Intelligence operatives from outside of Star Fleet (civilian)

In terms of training and expertise, the following personnel should be sought (would be concurrent with above list):

  • A communications expert;
  • An engineering expert;
  • A mathematician/cryptanalyst;
  • A computer expert;
  • A surveillance expert;
  • An undercover operative;
  • A medic;
  • An analyst (usually the CO)

Keep in mind that more than one of these fields of expertise can be found in a single officer; for example, usually an undercover operative has some expertise in surveillance, computers and/or communications as well.

Final say as to the composition of the unit lay with the unit's Command Staff.

What kind of characters are NOT wanted in TFS?

This also varies from mission to mission. For example, more than one engineering expert may be needed if the mission involves installing or fixing ship systems; however, on a surveillance mission, one such character may be all that is needed.

Also, given the discreet nature of this unit, the stereotypical "James Bond" style agent would be a detriment trather than an asset- such agents often attract more attention to themselves than is good for the long-term health of an operations team. Besides, in reality, such agents would likely have gotten themselves defrocked and killed a long time ago- they just aren't realistic cover agents.

Finally, any agent with a propensity for undertaking rogue solo missions and/or "black" operations would be removed from consideration.

What are "black" operations and why can't TFS run them?

In the simplest of terms, "black" operations are so named because their very nature is contrary to the moral and ethical tenets championed by Starfleet. Such operations might include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Assassination/Murder of another sentient being;
  • Torture of another sentient being;
  • Willful destruction of the life and/or property of another group or organization, unless the destruction of the life and/or property of innocent sentient beings would result from inaction.

Such operations would never be approved by anyone in Starfleet. The reasons is simple: they "cross the line" between acceptable and wrong. Though there are those who would use such operations against Starfleet, that does not justify Starfleet's use against others. Anyone undertaking such an operation would be punished to the fullest extent of the law.

This boundary cuts to the very heart of Starfleet, and is at the center of the creation of the organization this unit was designed to catch- Section 31.

Who is Section 31?

Section 31 is an organization that, ironically, has the same ultimate goal of Starfleet and all of her branches: to protect the Federation from internal and external threats. However, where Starfleet sees moral and ethical limits to its operations, Section 31 does not- they operate without regard for such trivialities. In short, where Starfleet has a conscience, Section 31 does not.

It was this point that actually resulted in the creation of this "unofficial" branch of Starfleet. Most analysts believe that Section 31 is likely comprised primarily of disgruntled and frustrated intelligence agents from civilian and military organizations around the Federation, most notably OSFI and SECIS. The theory is that these agents were frustrated by the limits placed on their actions by the moral and ethical mandates that are a part of every Federation service branch's bylaws and mission statements. In short, they felt as if their hands were tied- especially in the face of opponents like the the Tal' Shiar and the Obsidian Order, who regularly unertake operations Starfleet would classify as "black." Many of these agents resigned their commissions and organized into another group, one that would "fight fire with fire," so to speak. They called themselves "Section 31," after the subsection in the Articles of the Federation that, they believe, authorizes their existence.

It is important to note that agents of this organization likely view themselves as having a more realistic appraisal of what is needed in the modern game of Cloak and Dagger, while other organizations are simply naive. It is equally important to note that agents of Section 31 believe they are justified in their actions. As such, they don't see themselves as criminals, but more like misunderstood outlaws who will be exonerated in the annals of history.

For further information on Section 31, see the OSFI Section 31 Factfile.

What sort of missions will TFS run?

TFS will run infiltration, surveillance and counterintelligence operations from a deep-cover setting. For their first mission, they will likely pose as arms and equipment smugglers operating out of the Tybiiran Complex. They will use this cover to acquire business from Section 31. This will likely mean that they will have to actually run smuggling operations in order to pass themselves off as not only believable but skilled smugglers.

However, this is just one example. As TFS' missions evolve and shift in focus, so will TFS- and they will have to be flexible enough to handle such shifts.

OK- I am intrigued by what I've read and am I want in! How do I go about joining TFS?

Simple- contact Stefan Wiedner, the Commanding Officer of Task force Sierra. He'll get you started.

Version History:

1.0- Original document by Scott Lusby (SD 160111)