Saturday, November 1, 2014

CH2: Homecoming, Part 7

Conditions for the Martian Revolution – Military

Historically, Martian wars had been dominated by the use of fission weapons. During the 4600's, an earlier blossoming of culture in Amazonis Planitia was snuffed out by a nuclear bombardment that destroyed several of the contending cities. After this, cities had refrained from using fission weapons except on the battlefield, observing a tacit rule-of-war to limit battles to outside cities. As a result, while wars often caused extraordinary casualties among the military, they were also limited; enemy cities were off-limits unless they could be taken by subversion or sabotage. Military objectives were restricted to the seizure of mines, fortresses, transport links, and other exurban assets. Military units were primarily elite formations equipped with low-yield fission weapons and armored vehicles, often retained as mercenaries rather then regular soldiers.

Some time in the 4990's, however, the MuniDef forces began to make use of the new technique of eptification, the direct uploading of reaction patterns to the brain using surgically-implanted introdes, and later transcranial electromagnetic stimulation. These early eptification techniques were limited to what were, at the time, called “muscle memories”, and are now known as programmed reaction complexes. An eptified soldier would emerge from training with little abstract knowledge of military techniques, but with new reflexes and instincts that made him or her an accurate marksman, a fast trench-digger, and a disciplined fighter under fire. Eptified soldiers could not match the elites for technical skill or tactical ability without further training and experience, but could be produced en masse. At the time, these troops were seen as no different in kind from the poorly-trained and -equipped secondary militias that had long formed a subsidiary part of the MuniDef militaries.

Almost as important as eptification was the new availability of low-cost, miniaturized, ultraviolet point-defense lasers. Again, defense lasers had always been part of the toolkit of the Martian military, but their expense and bulk meant they were limited to defending the Cities and key fortresses. The new systems were cheap enough to be produced in large quantities and small enough to mount on tracked vehicles.

By 5,021 AD, a revolution in military affairs was well underway, but had yet to be recognized by more then a handful of people.

No comments:

Post a Comment