Starfleet Command General Orders
The following lists the general instructions for Starfleet Command. Recommended by the Secretary of Starfleet and established through executive order by the Federation Council, these general orders pertain to all Starfleet personnel. They specify the extent to which the Federation Council and Assembly maintain control over their military counterparts. Conversely, they also represent to what extent Starfleet Command is capable of influencing Federation policy.
There are currently 25 General Orders (32 including those for the Next Generation timeline) for the proper conduct of Starfleet operations. The first six are the original orders that were established upon the founding of the United Federation of Planets.
General Order 1
The Prime Directive
As the right of each sentient being to live in accordance with its normal cultural evolution is considered sacred, no Starfleet personnel may interfere with the normal and healthy development of alien life and culture. Such interference includes introducing superior knowledge, strength, or technology to a world whose society is incapable of handling such advantages wisely. Starfleet personnel may not violate this Prime Directive, even to save their lives and/or their ships, unless they are acting to right an earlier violation or an accidental contamination of said culture. This directive takes precedence over any and all other considerations, and carries with it the highest moral obligation.
General Order 2
No Starfleet personnel shall unnecessarily use force, either collectively or individually, against members of the United Federation of Planets, their duly authorized representatives, spokespersons, or designated leaders, or members of any sentient non-member race, for any reason whatsoever.
General Order 3
The sovereignty of each Federation members being respected in all things, Starfleet personnel shall observe any and all statutes, laws, ordinances, and rules of governance currently in effect within the jurisdiction of a member planet. Violators of such ordinances will be subject to such punishments or corrections as shall be determined by local governmental bodies.
General Order 4
If contact is made with hitherto undiscovered intelligent lifeforms, under no circumstances shall Starfleet personnel, either by word or deed, inform said lifeforms that worlds other than their own exists outside the confines of their own space.
General Order 5
In cases of extreme emergency, Federation special representatives are empowered to assume emergency powers to deal with a condition or circumstance that is deemed hazardous to the welfare of Federation citizenry. Within the scope of these emergency powers, duly authorized civilian personnel may assume temporary command of Starfleet vessels and/or personnel to deal with the emergency. Starfleet personnel must submit to their authority for the duration of the crisis.
General Order 6
The request for emergency assistance from Federation citizenry demands unconditional priority from Starfleet personnel. Such personnel shall immediately respond to said request, postponing all other activities.
General Order 7
No Starfleet vessel shall visit the planet Talos IV under any circumstances, emergency or otherwise. This order supersedes General Order 6. Any transgression of this general order shall be punishable by death.
General Order 8
Upon sighting a warship within Federation space and identifying it as belonging to a foreign power, the commander of the Starfleet vessel shall determine the reason(s) for that craft's presence in the vicinity. If there is conclusive evidence that the vessel has a hostile intention, the Federation vessel may take appropriate action to safeguard the lives and property of Federation members. In such cases, the commander may use his discretion in deciding whether to use force to disable the hostile vessel. However, care should be taken to avoid unnecessary loss of sentient life.
General Order 9
No commander of a Starfleet vessel, military or auxiliary, may grant political asylum to any individual without first being given express permission to do so by a representative of the Federation government.
General Order 10
If there exists eyewitness testimony by senior officers or similar verifiable evidence that an individual has violated the Prime Directive, said individual may be relieved of duty by a duly sworn representative of the Federation government and placed under immediate arrest. The governmental representative shall then take such action as he deems necessary to minimize the results of the violation.
General Order 11
Starfleet officers with the rank of captain or higher are granted full authority to negotiate conditions of agreement and/or treaties with legal representatives of non-Federation planets. In such circumstances, the acting officer carries de factor powers of a Federation special ambassador. Any and all agreements arranged in this manner are subject to approval by the Commander in Chief of Starfleet Command and the Secretary of Starfleet.
General Order 12
Federation officers may violate Neutral Zone areas as designated by treaty only if such action is required to save the lives of Federation citizens under conditions of extreme emergency.
General Order 13
Except when orders state to the contrary, Starfleet personnel will respect the territorial integrity of independent planetary systems and governments, and will not violate territorial space belonging to such worlds.
General Order 14
Starfleet personnel may intervene in local planetary affairs to restore general order and to secure the lives and property of Federation citizens only upon receiving a direct order to do so from a civilian official with the title of governor or higher.
General Order 15
No officer of flag rank may travel into a potentially hazardous area without suitable armed escort.
General Order 16
Starfleet personnel may extend technological, medical, or other scientific assistance to a member of a previously unrecognized sentient species only if such assistance in no way compromises the Prime Directive of the security of the Federation or Starfleet.
General Order 17
Starfleet vessel captains are to consider the lives of their crew members as sacred. In any potentially hostile situation, the captain will place the lives of his crew above the fate of his ship.
General Order 18
Upon being accused of treason against the Federation, Starfleet personnel may demand a trial conducted by the Federation judiciary. If the individual is acquitted, Starfleet Command shall have no further legal recourse against the accused in said manner.
General Order 19
Except in times of declared emergency, Starfleet personnel may under no circumstances convey personnel or material between planets or planetary systems when there is reason to believe that said personnel or material may be used to conduct aggression. This order applies to independent worlds within the Federation as well as to Federation members.
General Order 20
Officers and personnel of Starfleet Command may employ whatever means necessary to prevent the possession, transportation, sale, or commercial exchange of sentient beings being held against their wishes within the boundaries of Federation space.
General Order 21
No Starfleet personnel, either officer or enlisted, may offer his services to an independent foreign government without the express authorization of the Federation Assembly.
General Order 22
As the rights of individual expression and free discourse are considered sacred, Starfleet personnel may debate the policies and decisions of their governmental representatives privately at any time, to the extent that such discussions do not violate their command oath or specific duties to the Federation per these General Orders or Starfleet regulations.
General Order 23
When verifiable proof is presented to the senior commanding officer of a Starfleet vessel or post that a Federation representative may currently be acting or has acted in the past to violate the Prime Directive, the officer may relieve said representative of office, then assume the full powers of that office pending a full investigation by government officials.
General Order 24
If a commanding officer deems that an individual or group of individuals pose a threat to Starfleet personnel or Federation civilians, he may take any action deemed necessary (including the use of force) to secure the safety of those threatened.
General Order 25
Civilian and military personnel taken into custody by Starfleet personnel during times of extreme emergency shall be accorded proper treatment consistent with rank or station, insofar as such treatment does not compromise the security of the Federation or Starfleet.
Next Generation General Orders
General Order 26
No member of a ship's complement or other ground-based installation can be held directly accountable for the actions of their superiors. Similarly, no member of a ship's company or other Starfleet personnel will share in disciplinary measures taken against the commanding officer(s) if said individuals were not directly involved in the actions leading to disciplinary measures. This order extends to conditions involving proven violations of the Prime Directive, where proof of such violations exist.
General Order 27
No member of Starfleet shall be required by the assignment of standard duties and responsibilities to undergo extended separation from his family if family members can be reasonably provided for aboard ship or as a part of an existing Starfleet installation.
General Order 28
No officer of command rank shall be removed from command status unless such action has the complete and unqualified agreement of at least three senior officers present. Whenever possible, such officers shall include the ship's First Officer, Chief Medical Officer, Counselor, and one junior officer of command station.
General Order 29
The primary responsibility of the commander of any Starfleet vessel or installation is the welfare and safety of his crew, including any civilian members. No action may be taken that creates an unwarranted threat to the safety of those individuals under the officer's charge, except in the line of duty and when otherwise unavoidable.
General Order 30
Starfleet Command recognizes the right of each ship commander to interpret the specifications of the Prime Directive as he sees fit, consistent with the conditions of other existing general orders in effect, and based upon circumstances that may arise in dealing with newly discovered sentient races.
General Order 31
The conditions and specifications of the Prime Directive shall henceforth apply to all sentient lifeforms discovered, whether they are of natural or artificial origin.
General Order 32
Except in the case of an extreme emergency, no Starfleet commander is authorized to order his ship to travel faster than Warp Factor Five without express permission from Starfleet Command.
S T A R T R E K