Then again, the Federation was completely unprepared for the Dominion War, as most of Starfleet was geared toward exploration and not warfare. Only the USS Defiant was explicitly built as a warship (probably a corvette in Stellaris terms) in response to the Borg.
Okay but in the time of the Next Generation, it had become pretty clear that the federation has ridiculously powerful ships compared to the other alpha quadrant powers. The Enterprise D sustained 1000 people including fanilies, research labs, a huge array of leisure suites and so on. The Romulan Empire sent three or four of their most powerful warships
whenever they really wanted the threaten/attack that ship. The Klingons, aside from that stupid movie, needed even more ships. As for the cardassians, they last several warships to one nebula starship operating alone in their space.
And by the end of the dominion war, the federation was
losing, but had rebuilt their fleet three times and finally started making proper warships, which was good enough to stand up to a borg cubes assault for hours
before being abandoned. As for their sovereign class, it waa shown to stand up and defeat (at cost) the absolutely most overpowered ship in the alpha quadrant (and a borg cube and sphere).
I always viewed the federation as a superpower compared to wannabe super powers. If they ever try to militerise, they tend to crush the alpha quadrant and whatever else gets in their way.