The stops Skynet kills John Connor Paradox

Alright, John Connor came to be because Kyle Reese was sent back to the past to protect Sarah Connor and ensure that John Connor would be born, which is an paradox in itself that I won’t get into.

Now, if John Connor sent back T800 in T2 and Cameron with the standing order of “Protect John Connor”, should they really be helping with destroying Skynet?

Because if Skynet doesn’t exist in the future, Kyle Reese need not travel back to the past, thus John Connor would not have existed in the first place.

So if their order is to “Protect John Connor”, wouldn’t they need to protect Skynet as well? As for Sarah, if she stops Skynet, doesn’t she sacrifice her son?

head explodes

These paradoxes are why you cant really explain time travel without including alternate parallel dimensions. Big one you forgot to mention: Skynet could not have come about without the jump in technology provided by the arm of the first Terminator. No time travel, no skynet, no skynet no time travel.

Plus, how does future skynet know how to remedy its previous mistakes. The only information it has to go on is what is in a computer system and what it can learn, but it cant learn why a terminator unit failed without documentation. Heck, it doesnt even know where Sarah Conner lived in the first movie. They would be doomed to repeat their mistakes ad infinitum without information from an operative sent back in time.

Also, did they ever explain how a second terminator was sent back when Kyle Reese clearly states the time travel technology is destroyed and skynet is defeated?

In short: Time travel is confusing.

How would he know it was destroyed? He couldn’t have witnessed it himself.

Well he said skynet was defeated and I believe he said John Connor was staying to ensure the destruction of the time travel apparatus. As in, “soon as you go through, we’re blowing this place up.” I suppose skynet could have intervened, but then they wouldnt really have been defeated. Sending that first terminator was a last ditch effort to rewrite the time line in their favor.

If Alternate/Parallel timelines means things/people don’t dissapear Back to the Future style, then the problem with Alternate/Parallel timelines is why bother send back anything at all.

If changing the past doesn’t really affect the current timeline’s outcome, then Skynet sending back the T800 in T1 will not stop the resistance from winning in this timeline. It will just create a new one which the original Skynet would know nothing about.

Though in this case, after preventing Skynet from coming online, Sarah will not witness her son dissapearing in front of her.

If the alternate dimension time travel theory is the way it works, yes, it would be pointless.

Erasing someone you know from history, or somehow altering things so you never met would mean that their involvement in your life would never have happened. In Stargate Continuum(?) half of SG1 disappears as their timelines are altered. You wouldnt see them disappear, you would forget you ever knew them and your present would be altered but you would never know (unless you managed to effect a change from outside your own universe).
Of course I am assuming, since I have never travelled backward in time.