Obsidian Order

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The Obsidian Order is an organization that features in Star Trek.



Security Chief Odo of Deep Space Nine remarked that it was one of the most brutally efficient organizations in the galaxy. The Order kept very close tabs on all Cardassian citizens to ensure loyalty, and was greatly feared. It was said that the average Cardassian could not sit down to dinner without the contents of the said meal being noted and logged by the Order. Odo also noted that the Order caused people to disappear for even less than eating something of which the Order did not approve, although this statement may have just been an exaggeration for effect. The Obsidian Order's agent training program is so advanced that they are made immune to most forms of interrogation, including Vulcan mind melds.

The Obsidian Order frequently clashed with Central Command (the Cardassian military), partly because even the highest ranking Command officers are not immune from Order inquiries. According to the Cardassian governmental charter, the Order is expressly forbidden from developing or possessing military equipment of any kind. (DS9: "Defiant")

Elim Garak was a member of the Order, before being exiled from Cardassia to Deep Space Nine by his father, Enabran Tain. Tain had retired for a time, the only director to ever live long enough to do so. Garak became an ally of the Federation who used his knowledge to aid them in the war against the Dominion.

For sometime, the Order had been aware of the fact that the U.S.S. Defiant was outfitted with a cloaking device on loan from the Romulan Star Empire. The conditions made with the Federation meant that it was allowed only for use in the Gamma Quadrant for operations against the Dominion. As such, the Order decided not to disclose this fact to the Central Command as they believed a single cloaked ship was not a threat to he empire. (Episode: Defiant)

The Obsidian Order dispatched an observer named Korinas to the Cardassian War Room in 2371 to control the actions of the Cardassian military. (Episode: Defiant)

In 2371, the Obsidian Order and their Romulan equivalent, the Tal Shiar, allied in an attempt to destroy the Dominion. To this end, the Order began stockpiling a fleet of ships, even though its governmental charter strictly forbade it from possessing or developing military equipment of any kind. The plan, originated by Tain, involved a fleet of cloaked Romulan and Cardassian vessels traversing into the heart of Dominion territory in the Gamma Quadrant where they would annihilate the homeworld of the Founders.

The Founders soon learned of the plan and saw it as an opportunity to eliminate the two dangerous organizations. When the Romulan/Cardassian fleet arrived at the Founders' homeworld, they bombarded it, only to realize that the planet was deserted except for a token beacon. Moments later, the Dominion sprung the trap they arranged and a fleet of 150 Jem'Hadar fighters emerged from hiding in a nearby nebula and proceeded to wipe out the fleet. At least a few Romulan and Cardassian officers survived to be taken prisoner. Tain himself survived for two years in a Dominion internment camp before dying of heart failure.

The disastrous results of this attack (and perhaps fear that the Order had clearly become too independent) led to the downfall of the Obsidian Order. The downfall of the Obsidian Order is thought to have contributed to a political shakeup that lead to the renewed empowerment of the Detapa Council. This in turn paved the way for invasion of Cardassia by the Klingon Empire and eventual Dominion membership. After Cardassia joined the Dominion, an organization similar to the Obsidian was formed, which was called the Cardassian Intelligence Bureau.


They were known to dispatch operatives to serve as observers to watch over military operations and ensure that sensitive information was not lost to enemies during joint missions with other nations. (Episode: Defiant)


  • Elim Garak :
  • Korinas : a female Cardassian who was sent as an observer from the Obsidian Order to the Central Command during the joint operation with Captain Sisko to recover the U.S.S. Defiant. (Episode: Defiant)


  • The Obsidian Order made its first appearance in Star Trek: Deep Space 9.


  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine:

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