Wednesday, July 08, 2009
I served two tours of duty during the Martian Automaton Riots of ‘34. My first was spent as a combat medic. After three months of leave, I returned to duty as part of a mobile surgical hospital unit.
The bots may not have been flesh, but their methods of warfare could be every bit as sadistic and cruel as those of any human who ever lived, and the psychological operations in which they engaged were highly effective. It was the standard stuff: mutilated corpses, torture, live burials – that kind of thing. But while the soldiers fought them tooth and nail, the automatons waged a technological war against our systems on Ares and back home on Terra. The souls of the men and women killed were destroyed by the machines, never to be recovered. So people were terrified, even those of us soldiers who knew death and who knew that the machines were just playing at our fears.