...Nor the Battle to the Strong

"...Nor the Battle to the Strong"
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode
Episode no.Season 5
Episode 4
Directed byKim Friedman
Story byBrice R. Parker
Teleplay byRené Echevarria
Featured musicDennis McCarthy
Cinematography by
Production code502
Original air dateOctober 21, 1996 (1996-10-21)
Guest appearances
Episode chronology
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"...Nor the Battle to the Strong" is the 102nd episode of the American syndicated science fiction television series Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, the fourth episode of the fifth season.

Set in the 24th century, the series follows the adventures on Deep Space Nine, a space station located near a stable wormhole between the Alpha and Gamma quadrants of the Milky Way Galaxy. In the middle seasons of the series, the United Federation of Planets is in a state of hostility with the Klingon Empire. In this episode, budding journalist Jake Sisko (Cirroc Lofton) finds himself helping out in an emergency field hospital at a Federation colony under Klingon attack.

This episode attained a Nielsen rating of 5 points, corresponding to about 4.9 million viewers when it was broadcast on television in October 1996.[1]


Jake Sisko is returning from a medical conference with Dr. Julian Bashir. Although Jake intended to write an article about the doctor, he discovers he's having trouble finding anything interesting to write about. They receive a distress call from a Federation colony which has just been attacked by the Klingons. Jake sees the potential for a good story, and convinces Dr. Bashir to take him along.

Jake has trouble handling the chaotic emergency room situation at the hospital, particularly triage. One of the patients, a Starfleet officer, claims to have been shot in the foot by the Klingons, but Bashir discovers that the wound was self-inflicted, intended to get him out of the fighting. Jake is disgusted by the man's cowardice.

Everyone expects the Klingons will take over the settlement within days if no reinforcements arrive. On Deep Space Nine, Jake's father, Captain Benjamin Sisko, takes command of the starship Defiant to come to aid the colony.

When the power goes out as a result of a Klingon attack, Jake and Dr. Bashir attempt to retrieve a portable generator from their runabout. They come under fire from the Klingons. Terrified, Jake abandons Dr. Bashir and runs. Jake comes across a mortally wounded combat officer and is desperate to help him, but the dying officer accuses Jake of merely trying to redeem his cowardice. When Jake returns to the hospital, he claims he became disoriented and was knocked unconscious. Bashir blames himself for putting Jake in danger.

Jake talks to the soldier who shot himself in the foot, and the two commiserate over the terror of battle. Jake is upset at how calm people are acting, especially their gallows humor, and has an angry outburst. Bashir tries in vain to make him open up.

The Klingons attack the hospital while Jake is sleeping. As the medical team tries to evacuate everyone, Jake is attacked by two Klingons. He picks up a phaser from a dead guard and begins firing wildly, which causes a cave-in that knocks him unconscious. Because of the cave-in, the patients are able to escape. Jake survives without injury other than a few bruises. He is considered a hero. He writes the truth in his article, concluding that the line between courage and cowardice is much thinner than he had thought. He gives a copy to Bashir and another to his father, who tells his son how proud he is.


The title comes from a line in the Bible, Ecclesiastes 9:11, which reads "I have seen something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift nor the battle to the strong, ... but time and chance happen to them all." Ecclesiastes 9:11[2]


Tor.com gave the episode 8 out of 10.[3]

In 2015, Geek.com recommended this episode for their abbreviated Star Trek: Deep Space Nine binge-watching guide.[4]


  1. ^ http://users.telenet.be/WebTrek/Ds9/Ratings/ratings5.html
  2. ^ Ecclesiastes 9:11, King James Version (Oxford Standard, 1769)
  3. ^ DeCandido, Keith R. A. (May 14, 2014). "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: "Nor the Battle to the Strong"". Tor.com.
  4. ^ Ryan Whitwam (January 19, 2015). "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine condensed: How to watch the most story-driven Trek". Geek.com. Archived from the original on November 20, 2016.

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