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R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-46)

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[PART 46]

More Amazing Discoveries in Egypt

July 1929

As the sands of Egypt continued to slowly reveal her ancient secrets more often than not we found ourselves confronted with the reality that man’s destiny on Earth had been greatly influenced and at times directed by beings not of this world, and as it would become apparent not always by the efforts of Martians alone. Nevertheless, it appeared that much of this off-world interference had indeed come from the hand, so to speak, of a Martian. We were to discover that the complex at Giza appeared to have been the central focus of their ancient work.

The Giza report delivered to the Committee in July of 1929 in the Mars Room easily held the attention of all who attended. It was of course a secret meeting as what we were to learn had much effect on what had been “known” of man’s history in general and Egypt’s very specifically. Only later would we release information to the general public and even then it was to be sanitized.

From newly discovered underground wall paintings, many showing hybrids in command positions, as well as translations from a small but very well preserved underground library under the Giza complex we learned much that would either change what we thought we knew about Egyptian history or answer some of the questions long discussed by scholars. One was how the Egyptians had built the pyramids of Giza.

The “sky people” had provided much technology to ancient peoples only to remove much of its evidence when they departed the Earth. Two of these secrets involved the ability to somehow soften the giant stones to shape and mold them to perfect shapes needed for construction of massive buildings and the ability to somehow levitate or make weightless in a small zone, these huge stones with what was called an “orange beam device from above.” Another advancement used alongside the molding process” was a large cutting and polishing wheel said to be some 25 feet high set into the stone holder from which it was spun and rolled forward to cut into the massive blocks. In fact, the wheel mounts (three of them) were found near the facility years earlier but their use could not be guessed at until we learned about the huge wheels set inside which must have looked like the world’s largest saw blade.

We also learned that in order to cut into these massive blocks the builders had lined the cutting wheels with diamonds! Even with these documents it would have been difficult to believe this story if it had not been for the discovery six months earlier of a seven foot rounded section of one of these cutting wheels. And yes, it was still embedded with some of the finest diamonds they had ever seen.

The team had also located what appeared to be some type of food production area under the facility. Upon close examination it was found that many of what looked like large stone vats had held some type of blue/green algae. How and why these people were growing blue/green algae was not known at this time. It is not suspected that the ancient Egyptians used this material so if anything it had something to do with the hybrids or the Martians themselves.

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Martians and Egyptian hybrids

From the newly translated documents discovered a few years earlier we had learned for the first time that several Egyptian leaders, thousands of years ago, had actually been taken to Mars! Although the scrolls do not go into great detail they do relate that the “sky voyage to the god of Mars lasted a few months.” From what could be learned there was much work in the creation of hybrids both on Earth and when these ancient Egyptians were on Mars. The Martian hybridization program had been a two planet affair for many years.

MARTIAN TUNNELING MACHINES COME ON LINE

It had taken years, but we finally had all three abandoned Martian tunneling machines working (never used by the Martians on Earth) and I must say that these 500-ton rock-boring machines worked magnificently. After being disassembled, the Committee sent one each by cargo ship to New York City, London and Sydney and they were soon speeding along creating about one mile of tunnel per day – for each machine! With these new machines working, added to our smaller Earth built versions, the Committee now had high expectations that all of our primary underground projects would indeed be completed before the next expected major attack from Mars. (It was still thought to be possible around 1935.) In the areas where the large Martian machines were in operation we could now use some of the smaller machines to cut into the rock to produce the “buildings and offices” offset from the main tunnels.

We had made our plans to build underground not knowing if we would ever be able to eventually use these abandoned machines left by the Martians. Nevertheless, now that they were operational our work would progress much faster and if our estimates of Martian war plans were anywhere near accurate we would not only finish our underground work at these three primary locations, we fully expected to send all three of the machines to other important locations in the near future. These machines could now be added to our own many, but much smaller, tunneling machines which had been operating for years.

On 17 December 1929 we received a report from one of our Secret Intelligence Service operatives in Brazil of a strange power failure at their new Uberlandia power station. Five days earlier at around 3:15 a.m. the automatic override system suddenly disconnected the link and shut down power to both main power trunks. Within seconds a technical aid at a substation 50 miles to the south called to report that a large unidentified object had just flown over his station and all of his automatic safeguards had been disconnected. The unidentified object was heading for Uberlandia as the technician re-set the safety keys only to have them disconnected a second time almost at once. After the second disconnect the Uberlandia power station reported that all generated power systems were being drained of energy! Going outside several members of the power station staff were able to see the craft less than 100 feet from their building as a beam of bright light was “pulled from the power station before the craft took off towards the south.”

Committee investigators later surmised that the craft, identified as Martian, was somehow recharging some electrical storage system onboard their craft. Tesla and his team were notified and began to work on plans to “protect the power grid from Martian attacks.” That would turn out to be a rather tall order. We also had other more down to Earth questions to think about. Why did the Martian crew feel the need to drain energy from one of our power plants with all of their sophisticated technology on board their spacecraft? Were some of their systems failing or were they not nearly as advanced as we had been led to believe? This one went into the books as unexplained.

By the end of 1929 the American government, now leading the world in wireless, could count some 10 million households with simple radio sets. It was not nearly enough, but we had come a long way since 1922 when only 60,000 homes had primitive wireless sets so it was a very good start. The Committee needed to find a way to make ownership of radios as cheap and easy as possible and this needed to be a world-wide program not just in the fast recovering United States. The world needed radio and they needed it as fast as we could set up the stations to bring it to them. In order to expedite this effort the Committee set up a special group to fund new radio stations as well as local in country businesses to build and maintain small cheaply built radios. Keeping people informed was still near the top of our list of priorities worldwide. On a related note I recall that at about this time many individuals were building their own so-called “second generation” radio sets. These new “Tuned Radio Frequency” sets (TRF sets), were becoming quite popular, and if one was not disposed to built one’s own they were now readily available for purchase in most cities. With two tuning knobs and a reaction adjustment they had to be carefully set in order to receive a somewhat clear signal. I for one would wait for the next generation of radio before I put out any cash for a personal radio.

As 1929 came to a close Dr. Robert Goddard published for the general public his monograph titled: A Method of Reaching Extreme Altitudes. This work went well beyond placing payloads into Earth orbit and suggested that a well built multistage chemical rocket could in fact make it all the way to the moon. Wide attention was forthcoming. Once again we were informing the general public of progress we were making even though this work had been completed years earlier. No sense in giving our enemies on Mars any truly updated material. In fact, we wanted them to believe that we were progressing a lot slower than we actually were. We knew however, that we needed to show at least some progress – none would have seemed a bit suspicious.

What we did not announce was the test of a small ‘computing device’ which had been launched on one of Dr. Goddard’s rockets. This card-punch device was able to control the flight of the rocket even without the gyro controls which were turned off for ten seconds during the test. In rockets and control devices we were making some very good progress.

Empire State Building Construction

January 1930

With many of the below and above ground building programs well on their way a group of investors led by John J. Raskob and Pierre S. du Pont decided to build a signature building in the now semi-recovered Upper-New York City. This was being developed not only as an investment (of which the Committee had supplied some 30% of the original funds), but to demonstrate to the world that mankind had indeed moved on from the Martian and Great Earth Wars and were still quite capable of once again doing great things. This building was to be designed and built as the tallest man-made structure on Earth.

Searching for an appropriate building site, one which would not overlay any underground city L-streets or facilities, led general contractor The Starrett Brothers and Eken and architectural firm Shreve, Lamb and Harmon to a decimated site on Fifth Avenue or at least what remained of Fifth Avenue in the heart of the old city. The entire block, originally the old family farm owned by John Thompson, had been occupied by the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel complex owned by Col. John Jacob Astor before the First Martian War, now completely destroyed. This had been a great loss for the city’s well-healed crowd as before the war a group known amongst themselves as The New York Four Hundred, essentially New York City’s social elite, had claimed the hotel as their unofficial headquarters and private playground. They were then called the “Waldorf Crowd.” The Empire team had found their building site.

Working at top speed chief architect on the project, William F. Lamb and his team completed the working drawings in only two weeks! On 21 January 1930, excavation began on the site at 34th Street and Fifth Avenue. By 17 March which happened to be St. Patrick’s Day, construction began on the world’s tallest building. New York City newspapers took time to note that the Martians were not building any great new projects on their home planet as far as we could tell. (In truth we could tell very little at the time, and would later find that in fact the Martians were quite busy but it did make for great press.) They stressed the point that we were still progressing as the Martians seemed to have stagnated. They also took pleasure in reminding the public that despite the massive attack on Lower-New York City the year before New York City both above and below ground was not about to stop work on recovery and advancement.

During the 410 days the men of Upper-New York City took to build the world’s tallest structure some 3,400 workers could claim with a great deal of pride that they had worked on the project. Working alongside the New Yorkers were recent immigrants from the destruction of Europe and hundreds of ‘high iron’ workers mostly Mohawks from the Kahnawake Reservation near Montreal, Canada. (Montreal was still recovering, but for some reason the Martians had missed the reservation.) In all, considering the massive effort, it was truly amazing that ‘only’ five workmen would be killed during its construction. To speed up the construction large so-called ‘sub-assemblies’ were put together off-site and trucked to the building site to be included in the building as construction elevators hummed day and night. During the peak of work the teams were completing one floor every day! It was truly an astonishing rate. Only two years after its completion movie goers could gaze upon the new building in a movie featuring a large ape named King Kong as the huge beast made his last stand with his diminutive lady love.

It is interesting to remember that even while this work was being completed, work was to continue on the new Chrysler Building and 40 Wall Street projects. There was a lot of ‘high iron’ work going on at the time, which kept the economy of the still recovering new city booming.

On 31 May 1931, the Empire State Building was officially opened when United States President (and Committee Prince) Herbert Hoover pushed a button in the newly completed White House (below ground sections) which turned the lights on from his office in New Washington Center. The above ground White House building itself had been reconstructed soon after the First Martian War – rebuilt on the same site which had been mostly destroyed all accept the north face of the building. That wall had since been re-enforced and was used as the starting point for the reconstruction. From all appearances it was an absolute duplicate of the original structure due to hundreds of photos taken of the original being used as well as detailed plans of the original structure. What had taken so long to complete were the new underground sections of the new White House which covered nearly twice the area of the above ground structure to include two miles of tunnels which could be used to evacuate if the need should arise.

Once again “the people’s house” was open for business. Interestingly, that original north wall section had been painted in a slightly off-white color in order to separate it from the new construction. The people wanted to be reminded that not all of the original White House had fallen to the Martians. It is also noteworthy to learn that there are also two burn stains on that very same wall section left there from the time the British came to town and set the White House on fire.

When completed anyone in New York City, upper and lower, including the 20,000 people who by then called the Empire State Building their home or workplace, could tell you that their new feature building rose to a new record height of 1,453 feet and a little over 8-1/2 inches above the street level with 102 floors. The first building in the world with over 100 floors the new structure sported a series of radio (and later TV) antennas on top with a lightening rod at the pinnacle. Just below the pinnacle was constructed a docking portal for lighter than air ships.

All of these facts and figures were proudly discussed as New Yorkers continued to rebuild their city both above and below ground. What was not widely known and was in fact a state secret at the time was the rotating beacon light positioned at the 1,400 foot level. It was not the beacon light itself which held the secret, anyone with a pair of binoculars during the day or simply looked at the building at night could have seen it. No – the real secret was what would be built into the top of the building behind the beacons which were in fact built to cover the secret project. The Committee under the direction of Nicola Tesla had been developing a powerful Heat-Ray weapon back engineered from Martian Technology which would eventually sweep a full 360 degrees and fire its deadly ray some five miles to any target which happened to come its way. The weapon could also move up or down to fire almost 45 degrees out of level plane. If the Martians came back to Upper-New York the Empire State Building would be ready to deliver a very nasty greeting!

Before we had completed the work in New York City however, it would be the Martians who would deliver a surprise to us along the cold shores of a frozen lake in Canada, and at the same time we would pull a scientific wonder out of our back engineering work on their machines.

Another Martian Secret Discovered

“Spooky action at a distance”

Dr. Einstein

To say that it was a scientific shock would be a great understatement. It was in fact the overturning of physics on its head. Even though we had several earlier reports from not only hybrids and captured humans but from several Martian Bs themselves, we still found it difficult to believe that the Martians had discovered how to communicate over vast distances instantly. In other words faster, much faster than the speed of light (Ref: Martian Electronic Document 41L26, 41L27).

Even when we captured the new machine the Martian Brotherhood had been given to communicate with the ‘Guiding One,’ we still had trouble accepting that instantaneous communication over millions (and probably hundreds of billions) of miles of space was even possible. But damned if it didn’t turn out to be the exact truth. It had taken the recovery of a second machine from a crashed Command Martian Flying Machine that had been located in a dense jungle in Brazil which allowed our people to use these devices and discover their capabilities. The Martians were so advanced that they had discovered how to communicate with each other instantly even if one of them was sitting on Mars and the other was orbiting the Earth. Einstein would eventually call it “spooky action at a distance.” When Drs. Tesla and Einstein worked out a partial solution they called the Committee executive staff together to tell us the exciting news. Dr. Einstein who by this time had moved to Princeton University even as he maintained an office at the Committee spoke first.

“Gentlemen, I would have thought only a few weeks ago that any type of communication or for that matter any form of information transmitted in our four dimensional space-time could not be transmitted faster than the speed of light. We must now come to an understanding that as Newton’s laws of gravitation were overtaken at high energies and high masses with relativity so relativity has been overtaken by advanced quantum forces understood and displayed by the Martians. There can be no doubt that the Martians are capable of using instantaneous communication over extreme distances which may in fact have no limit. Dr. Tesla.”

“Thank you Professor Einstein. Gentlemen, let me begin by stating that without the help of Dr. Einstein and Dr. Bohr I would not be able to address this group today, for I would be no further along in this particular work had I not received the generous help and guidance of these two great thinkers. Having said that allow me to explain as best one may what we have discovered.”

“With the help of Martian Electronic Documents, two of these devices, and years of back-engineering work, we now have a fundamental grasp of how this ‘magic’ is worked. Imagine in your minds, if you would, a pair of atomic partials electronically linked very closely to each other. One of the partials spins left and its matched atomic partial spins right. Now imagine five such matched pairs of particles with one group spinning left and the other group spinning right. Now place all of the spin-left particles in a very cold electronic containment field in which all five spin-left particles are in separate zones and that they are monitored electronically. This monitoring was displayed as lights on or off and since all five individual particles are in spin-left configuration the indicators are all off, or if you will, showing ‘zero’.

“Now in your mind do the same for the spin-right particles and their indicators show all are on or indicating a ‘one’. (Spin-left is off and spin-right is on.) Now remove the first containment device now reading 0-0-0-0-0 to a distant location; perhaps a distant planet. The Martians understand two linked properties of these particle pair sets. First, they are still connected particle pairs in space and time as if they were still close to each other in some way that we do not as yet understand. Second, when you change the spin on one of the matched particle pairs the other matched particle pair instantly ‘flips’ its spin exactly opposite of its matched particle even though it is located at a great distance and has no direct contact with that particle – instantly!

“Now, in order to send instant information the Martians must change the spin of the particles in one of the devices, now reading 1-1-1-1-1 to effect the second device now reading 0-0-0-0-0. By using a simple binary code (1 or 0) the Martians, in order to send information, say the number 27, simply change the spin of the first particle (reading from right to left) to 0, the second to 0, the third is left unchanged as 1, the forth to 0, and the fifth to 0. It now reads 0-0-1-0-0. Instantly the device on the other planet will indicate 1-1-0-1-1. In binary code 11011 = 27! They would have in fact instantly sent, by some as yet unknown cosmic agency, five ‘bits’ of data which can be read as the number 27.

“The guiding quantum field somehow exerts an action-at-a-distance force by which the physical effect of the spin particle is transmitted instantaneously to great and possibly infinite distances. We do not know how or why this works. Dr. Einstein has come to referring to this as ‘spooky action at a distance.” This brought on some laughter from those gathered – including Dr. Einstein. Dr. Tesla continued. “The only hint as to how or why this type of system operates at such grand distances is a few lines taken from a partly translated Martian Electronic Document which refers to a ‘dark field of energy which overlays all of space and time which is undetectable, but consists of some 95% of all energy/matter. This imbedded universal dark energy/matter field has no individual time component and is therefore universal in nature, timeless and instantaneous in its responses.”

“Gentlemen, this is only a very simple example of five ‘bits’ but imagine if you will millions or even perhaps billions of these linked pairs held in a small tabletop device no larger than a toaster able to transmit not only numerical data, but voice communications as clear as you and I are speaking in this room or perhaps even instant images of exactly what is going on in this room by some type of visual device. With this very advanced technology the Martians are not only able to communicate instantly with each other no matter where they are located or how far away, they are able to fly un-Martianed aerial craft over any portion of the Earth without actually being on our planet! We believe that this is the control method they are using for a few of their small reconnaissance vehicles. The only problem with this type of control seems to be that this method, for whatever reason, is not being used with their larger craft. We have no explanation for this discrepancy, if in fact there is one. It is thought that perhaps the Martians have only a limited number of these advanced devices and they may be very difficult to construct. One thing however, is very clear. When they use these devices there is absolutely no method we can think of to intercept or listen in on any communication transmitted, if that is the proper term, by these devices. They represent the ultimate in communications security.”

Later study would show that the Martians needed only one set of matched atomic particles in the device in order to transmit instant messages. With the pairs changing spin direction extremely fast, data, including voice and pictures, could be transmitted and displayed on a monitor or over a speaker. Whatever else these Martians were, they were damned inventive creatures. Their scientific abilities never failed to amaze all of us.

A MARTIAN SECRET FROM BACK ENGINEERING WORK

(Sort of)

Almost at the same time we were being amazed by the Martian communication device, engineers had ‘discovered’ the workings of a machine on board every Martian Flying Machine. We had suspected that it was used to display data files otherwise known as Martian Electronic Documents, but we had been unable to turn it on. On the last day of December 1929 the engineers located the on button! We had access to these files taken from their machines but could not display them on their own machines.

The device was not much to look at. It consisted of a flat strip of metal 18” in length 1” wide and 1/4 of an inch thick. Embedded in a wall panel it could be protected out from the wall for 18”. Two feet below the first strip was a second identical metal strip which would project from the same panel the full 18”. For years that was all the engineers could discover until one of them, somewhat rather frustrated after months of work on the device, took out a simple screw-driver and tapped the top metal bar then the second. It immediately turned on. He had accidentally vibrated the device which sent what looked like a 1” wide sheet of light from the top bar to the bottom bar. One second later a round Martian symbol appeared as an image in the center of the 18” x 24” “wall of light.” The device was now on and standing by for someone (or something) to touch the wall of light and request a file to be displayed on what was essentially just light beams and nothing else! One of the scientists reported that “Somehow the photons of light have been made to stick together to form a new molecular group, semi-nonsolid, from billions and billions of photons to create a new form of matter completely unknown to mankind.”

Placing his hand into the wall of light one engineer activated a section of the, for want of a better word, ‘screen’. This touch of the light wall highlighted an area and a Martian document appeared to simply float in the light field. This looked like some type of directory. Moving his hand one way or the other caused the electronic document to go from one section to another. Before long the engineers found that by touching the top of the document he could “make the document talk!” Not only had he accidentally discovered how to display Martian Electronic Documents essentially in mid-air, he had discovered how we could represent Martian primary language with Martian writing. This information along with one of the devices was soon on its way to our language group North of London.

At the same time this work was being developed one of the Committee science teams, now numbering in the hundreds, began building the largest computing devices ever built on Earth. At 26 locations around the world scientists and technology people were constructing machines referred to as Semi-Automatic Ground Environment Devices (SAGED). These machines would link the worlds military forces with a dedicated computing system to track and report on craft entering the Earth’s atmosphere in a line around the North and South Poles as well as several other critical locations from the poles to the equator. It was expected to take at least four years to complete this work. Time would be critical for this new defense project.

On 1 January 1930 the Prime Directorate post passed to Director E, Thomas Edison. However, being in ill health Mr. Edison wisely passed on the duties to the next in line. Professor Dr. Edwin P. Hubble, Director F, then accepted the Prime Directorate post. He would hold the post for the next twelve months.

By mid-1930 the “Magic Twelve” group had added two new members.

A – Henry Ford (1863-)

B – John D. Rockefeller (1839-1937)

C – General John Joseph ‘Black Jack’ Pershing (1860-)

D – Dr. Nikola Tesla (1856-)

E – Thomas A. Edison (1847-1931)

F – Dr. Edwin P. Hubble (1889-)

G – Dr. Claude Connor Pierce (1878-)

H – Sir Winston Churchill (1874-)

I – Sir Arthur John Evans (1851-)

J – Dr. Albert Heim (1849-1937)

K – Dr. Walter Hohmann (1880-)

L – Dr. Sigmund Freud (1856-)

Lake Anjikuni, Canada

November 1930

As we continued to build and prepare for the war that by 1930 we all knew would come, an event occurred which could only have been perpetrated by the Martians, yet any reference to them could have caused as great a panic as any war or plague could have. We knew of course that they were still operating in small groups on Earth at least for short periods of time and had bases of operation at both Poles, and now central Greenland (via electronic map), yet we had not seen any recent indication of large scale activities by the Martians themselves – until now. This was the event, which convinced the members of the Committee that the cometary impact on Mars had killed off many or perhaps most of the human hostages on Mars. We surmised that they needed to be replaced and the cold adapted people of the northern area of Canada were the ideal people in the ideal location to hunt for humans. Director G would state, “Hell, they were still kidnapping people wholesale for god’s sake! This sort of thing must end, and end soon. We must find a way to anticipate their moves and stop them.” This event also showed us that the Martians still had no reason to take our military forces too seriously as they continued to operate virtually unimpeded over short periods of time. So far, only Earth’s generally warm weather and the physical weakness of the Martians themselves along with the still deadly Earth bacteria were keeping most of Earth’s population safe – for now.

It was on a dark and cold November evening in 1930 when a particular form of terror came to an Eskimo fishing village as the more than 2000 residents of that sleepy village rested on the shore of Lake Anjikuni, Canada, situated on the ancient Canadian Precambrian Shield. The women of the village were preparing the evening meal. After that night not a single man, woman or child from that settlement would ever be seen again. The incident at Anjikuni made it abundantly clear that the Martians were indeed taking humans on a large scale for whatever reasons and those in government with this terrible secret needed to do all we could to hide that fact from a public already becoming all too aware that once again all was not well between the planets. We needed time to react. What we did not need was panic! It would be a fine line to walk keeping the people of the world informed of the Martian problem and at the same time reassuring them that all was well. When Winston Churchill heard the details he remarked, “This event should be immediately classified since it would create mass panic amongst the general population…” I had to agree with my old friend on this one. Cover stories were still the order of the day.

The first report I saw came from a French/Canadian fur trapper named Arnaud Laurent and his son, both of whom had worked in the area for a good many years. They had just finished putting out new traps for the coming season when they observed a solid bright light crossing the northern sky. Both men would later describe the light as “… coming from a cylinder shaped or bullet shaped object, solid in form.” Their story mirrored many of the aerial reports of the 1890s found in our CAIG files.

The full Committee became aware of the incident and the surrounding events somewhat later when French/Canadian fur trapper Joe Labelle reported the eerie silence he had found in the village at Lake Anjikuni. The village was on the regular route he had taken for many years. He was very familiar with the area and the village having spent a good deal of time there among his many Eskimo friends. Finding the area completely deserted Lebelle ran as fast as he could in the drifting snow to the nearest telegraph office and sent a message to the world famous Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). It did not take long for members of the RCMP, along with a team of specially trained Martian investigators (CAIG), to arrive on scene. What they found defied explanation, then as now, and no-one could have been prepared for what they discovered.

Entering the village from three different directions and fully armed to do battle with anyone or anything they may find, the teams came across only silence as if they were entering a grave yard. It was a silence which none had ever experienced. No birds, no animals, no people made so much as a whisper upon their carefully crafted approach as the northern lights danced far above. Normally the village even in the dead of winter was a bustle of activity – now only silence dominated the cold of the long Canadian night. None of the team could make out any lights from lamps or cooking fires. The first thing they were able to discover was that all of the kayaks were still lined up on the beach by the lake. In that cold stillness the teams began a detailed house-by-house, building-by-building room-by-room search including all of the storage areas, out buildings and fish storehouses. They would find that none of the stores had been disturbed, but no people were anywhere.

As the teams had entered the outskirts of town they noticed that there were no trails, no human tracks anywhere in the snow. There was simply nothing to show that humans had been living there recently, yet they knew only days earlier a community had been well in place. Spreading out in a line the teams then swept the area, north to south, and then again east to west – not a sign of any living person was found. They found no bodies either. There were no signs of a battle. However, what most frightened the searchers were the conditions found inside every home in the silent village. Food had been left on the tables half eaten or in cooking pots with plates in place, as one would expect to find for the evening meal. Some meat was still hanging over several cold fire pits. Half filled glasses were present with some clothes laid out as for bed. Most disturbing were the men’s hunting rifles each man owned as all of them had been simply laid on a table or set against a wall or doorway as if they were simply discarded as if the men seemingly walked away. No Eskimo man in his right frame of mind would walk away from his rifle; it is simply not done.

One particularly strange scene was of a set of clothes on a bed which had been only half put on. The rest of the clothing was still laid across the bed. On the floor was found one shoe. Nothing was disturbed, nothing. Seemingly this person had been in the middle of dressing and simply vanished! In another hut the team found an unfinished shirt that still had the sewing needles in it. It was also clear that none of the village’s emergency supplies had been disturbed in anyway. It was very clear that all of these people had simply stopped whatever they were doing, gotten up, and walked out of their homes! But where had they walked to?

The teams called for more men to begin a larger search hoping that something had drawn the Eskimos away from the village, but that if located they could be convinced that all was well and persuaded to return to the village. That effort would end when team members found the sled dogs – all of them under a 12-foot snowdrift – still tied to their posts having died of hunger. But there was more. Just after the dogs were found two team members who had been circling around the village to check on possible injured people came running back to the operations area, which had been set up by then in one of the community centers. The men had passed the graveyard now iced over and solid with the freeze. What they reported to the team members could not be reported to the general public at the time. (In fact it is still classified.) All of the graves – every one – had been cut out of the frozen ground and all of the bodies were gone. The rocks around the graves had been melted away as if the ground had been cut open with some type of powerful heat beam. It was all too clear that the Martians had taken them all from the ground and all of the people from their homes seemingly without any struggle. It was most disturbing to learn that the Martians wanted human corpses as well as live humans. Of what possible use was a decayed human corpse to a Martian? One idea passed around the Committee was that they were perhaps planting something inside the dead bodies!

As the men stared in disbelief at the open graves they could see “an unearthly blue glow on the horizon” that was nothing like the familiar northern lights. (These men were very familiar with this often spectacular sight.) Before long the light began to pulsate, rising above the horizon and in a flash it disappeared into the darkness of space. At the same time the team discovered that their small battery operated hand radios and the portable short wave radio mounted on one of their recon vehicles began to emit a single tone across the band. This was not the first time a close encounter with a Martian craft had caused such interference. The men knew then that the Martians had kidnapped some 2000 people and over 900 corpses to a fate far too horrible to contemplate.

We also knew that cover stories would need to be published which spoke of disastrous snowstorms and lost people dying as they attempted to move south, but these were only cover for the truth. Newsmen in The Pas, Manitoba, were soon reporting on and asking for more information about this singular event. The RCMP was able to play down reports by issuing a statement that only 30 people had gone missing and that they expected to be located in short order. They called the somewhat leaked true story “an urban myth,” and tried to laugh it off. Officially they would report, “It is also believed that such a large village would never have been possible in such a remote area, and we have no reports of any other supposed unusual activity in the Lake Anjikuni area. The single report of lights in the sky has been shown to be the usual Northern Lights.” For the investigators it only steeled our determination to fight these creatures that had so often brought death and destruction to the people of Earth. To those who would indiscriminately kill and kidnap humans we would continue to fight to the death. But the question was how? We could not save any of these lost people, but we had to find some way to bring battle to our enemies from Mars.

Within the Committee it was decided that the Martians could have only two reasons for kidnapping so many humans. The needed them to continue studying ways to kill large numbers of humans with some type of bio-agent or new gas and they were probably still using humans as slave labor as well as food! Either way we all knew that it would not be long before the Martians returned in full force. We had to be ready and as always time was not on our side. The Martians it would seem were still the enemy and we needed to continue to think of them in this way if we were to survive. What they wanted the corpses for we were never able to discover. Even later, when we captured Grays and Martian As none could or perhaps would give a satisfactory answer for this strange activity.

There was one other clue to the abductions. With so many Grays still on Mars there was no real need to bring human ‘food’ all the way back to Mars. That meant only one thing. These human victims could still be on Earth somewhere, being held by the Martians – but where? The north and south Polar Regions were our only thoughts, but we needed to find out for sure.

Editor’s Note: Most of these objects were taken to Mars Prime for further experimentation – The corpses were used as base bio-mass material for budding experimentation.

Later examination of the history of this area showed that explorer Samuel Hearne had explored the region in 1770 and had reported several incidents of “strange lights and fantastic aerial craft of such man has never before seen.” No one at the time paid much attention to his ‘musings.’ In 1848 explorer Francis Crozier had also explored the area and was known to have made it all the way to Lake Anjikuni before he too disappeared leaving no trace. It would seem that this area of northern Canada was very familiar to the Martians. We fully expected them to cross this area in force during the next invasion. If we had the time perhaps we could build a few surprises for them when they did.

[END PART 46]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 47: A message from Mars, tests and cave work.]

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-39)

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Dr. Robert Goddard at the board in his office

[PART 39]

Rocket Tests at White Sands

Since 1919 Robert Goddard and his Committee team had been testing rockets in the heat of White Sands, New Mexico. By early 1923 they had made great strides in the work and the secretive Dr. Goddard had built himself a new home in nearby Roswell.

A Goddard-4 rocket had already flown to an altitude of 9000 feet, a record at the time for Earth-based experiments, but Goddard was far from satisfied. He would soon launch a 26-foot rocket from his “A-Series” which reached 17,500 feet, as well as a 28-foot rocket which flew to the unheard of altitude at the time of 19,000 feet and speeds of over 1550 miles per hour! This was his new “L-C Series” which was used to test his guidance and control features. Now it was time to press on to multi-stage rockets and achieve much greater heights over the hot blowing sands of New Mexico.

Dr. Robert Goddard at the board in his office
Dr. Robert Goddard at the board in his office

When asked to say a few words at a dinner meeting held by the locals in support of “our rocket people” Dr. Goddard recalled what he had remarked on years earlier to his fellow students.

“Just as in the sciences we have learned that we are too ignorant safely to pronounce anything impossible, so for the individual, since we cannot know just what his limitations are, we can hardly say with certainty that anything is necessarily within or beyond his grasp. Each much remember that no one can predict to what heights of wealth, fame, or usefulness he may rise until he has honestly endeavored, and he should derive courage from the fact that all sciences have been, at some time, in the same condition as he, and that it has often proved true that the dream of yesterday is the hope of today and the reality of tomorrow.”

Originally, Goddard’s first goal had been to build a sounding rocket which could reach such heights as to make it possible to study the upper atmosphere. He did not see a time when he felt development would be fast enough to have any effect on possible future Martian adventurism. However, when the Great Earth War came he redirected his work to develop military applications to his work including navel torpedoes, mobile rocket artillery as well as a hand held rocket launching tube later named the ‘bazooka’ from the loud noise it made upon ignition of the solid rocket. With these weapons now well established in the field Goddard could spend most of his efforts on building ever more powerful liquid-fueled rockets expected to eventually place instruments into Earth orbit and perhaps send such instruments to the moon and beyond. With that in mind possible anti-Martian use came into play.

It was time to work on the new K and L series of multi-stage rockets designed to reach very high altitudes. Higher fuel pressures, more powerful engines and lighter thin-walled fuel tanks wound with high tensile strength wire added to new gyro controls were the keys to achieving this goal.

Dr. Goddard was also able to use the new metals developed by the Tesla and Edison teams working back engineered Martian technology. These new light weight yet strong ‘composites’ as they came to be known, would soon show great promise in his work. Goddard also needed new electronic controls that could take the punishment of a violent launch and still be able to steer his new rockets not only to higher and higher levels, he needed to be able to point his new smaller rockets to first area and then point targets.

It was not long before Goddard was able to launch rockets at the rate of once every two months to heights of over ten miles. He felt that with new fuels and larger more powerful engines he would be soon able to reach as high as 50 miles, well above the sensible portion of Earth’s atmosphere. However, without electrical devices able to add a good deal of control reaching great heights would be practically meaningless. Goddard and Tesla would need to get together to solve this and other rocket problems. In the meantime, Goddard’s team began to develop methods of placing large explosive devices on the tops of his rockets in order to attack targets on the ground well beyond the capability of manmade artillery and naval guns. His first goal would be to hit a target area 25 miles away.

One of Goddard’s early test rockets
One of Goddard’s early test rockets

It would not be long before Goddard’s rockets would prove their worth in not only exploration but defense of our planet. Goddard looked towards the stars for science. The Committee viewed his work primarily as possible weapons for a future war. It goes without saying that we would continue to support his valuable work with Committee funds.

It was at this time that Committee member Hermann Oberth published a small book, which was thought by most in the public to be futuristic titled The Rocket into Interplanetary Space. In reality, Oberth, under the guidance of the Committee, was introducing the possibility that would in the years to come become fact as humans pushed as hard as they could towards launching their own spacecraft. This work would also introduce the idea of a small manned space station in Earth orbit to keep an eye open for any “visitors from space!”

A Crack in the Committee Wall

Any powerful organization has its distracters especially a secret one; that is simply human nature. It is not too difficult to understand why some if not many people would be concerned about a small group of men seemingly above any type of law (which in point of fact the members of the Magic Twelve were). This was only natural. Few people are easily led by a group of unknown powerful men who hold the fate of millions in their hands. So it came as no particular surprise to the Committee that protests and demonstrations would occur every so often against this powerful group. This was one reason why the Committee decided quite early to minimize open references to their work and to direct as much publicity to national efforts and the efforts of individuals within the Committee such as Dr. Tesla without any mention of their direct involvement as members of the Twelve.

This policy of control from a background position had worked reasonably well for over two decades and seemed to be a good policy to continue for the years to come. That was until a disgruntled member working for, but not directly with, the Committee decided to publish a small pamphlet titled “A Crack in the Committee Wall.” This 85 page pamphlet described what the writer referred to as “a secret cabal of men responsible for secret prisons, assassinations, mind control, propaganda, military adventurism, torture of prisoners and much, much more.” When one takes a hard close look at many of our Committee operations the writer was not too far off the mark. And, it was something we could not allow to continue on and be re-published if we were to move forward with our work. The hunt was on for the writer known only as “Q”.

The so-called Executive Committee of Twelve operates on a level never before known on Earth. Yet, we ask: how did they acquire such power, such control over so many lives? Taking the opportunity of the Martian War these men were able to establish themselves in a ruined London able to command what resources remained of the British Empire and mold themselves with the Americans to become the only world superpower as the Martians began to fall all over the world. With funding acquired by the “nations of the world” and kept off the books, they have established underground jails and prisons that do not exist as far as anyone will ever know. Could they in fact be worse than overt control by Martians? Have we not learned from history that as prosperity grows authoritarian societies move towards less stability not greater stability?

We all must become aware of forced labor camps set up in many areas around the world that include “re-education” for all of these Committee prisoners. And there is no need to remind anyone of the “special treatment” dished out to any and all hybrids simply because they are different from most so-called “real humans.” Q

It did not take long for Tango and other security forces within the Committee to track down who “Q” really was. Not unexpectedly “Q” turned out to be a small group of pro-Brotherhood hybrids, not part of the actual Martian Brotherhood working out of Chicago. What was rather surprising, at least at the time, was that at least four members of this small group turned out to be “full-human.”

The solution to the Q pamphlet suggested by Director L was to produce responses to every issue the pamphlet exposed and to prove to “world opinion” that it was in fact Brotherhood propaganda. Our own propaganda arm made certain to include information on several hybrid attacks, including the recent loss of the dirigible Roma in order to demonstrate how much of an enemy the Brotherhood really was and how dangerous some hybrids could be in general. A second part of the propaganda program was to emphasize how much control was being developed by individual nations and their supposed “non-Committee leadership” in their own affairs as well as what major building and recovery programs had been and were still being directed by Committee members around the world. Most emphasis was made of the efforts of the League of Nations.

Even though we would still experience protests and other anti-Committee writings in the future, for the most part the “crack in the wall” had been repaired, at least for a while. In the meantime the world was soon paying a great deal of attention to a report of a destroyed Martian city. I remember at the time one of my aids remarking that the Martians “just can’t seem to catch a break.”

A Martian City Confirmed Destroyed

14 February 1923

“One down – Three to go!”

Headline – New Sydney Times

On 14 February 1923, Professor Michael Davis published his startling report on the comet, which had impacted Mars on 8 July 1920. Most of his scientific report focused on the overall planetary effects of impact, dust and secondary effects of the comet’s impact including the fact that Mars was delivered a goodly amount of water, which had been evaporated into the thin atmosphere and was now readily available for Martian use. All-in-all it was a rather dry scientific report on things Martian. (Nevertheless, it was required reading for Committee members, as many reports are.) By now the atmosphere had cleared enough to present a generally clear view of the planet. However, the most startling portion of his report was written almost as an afterthought as he was able to note that a large amount of secondary impact debris did indeed land on or very near one of the so-called Martian domed surface cities. He noted that, “All other known Martian surface locations still show reflective light and at times internally generated artificial light.”

The city at Chryse Regio however, no longer showed either, reflective or artificial light. “It is now suspected that the city near the southern edge of Chryse Regio was completely destroyed by, and or covered over by this secondary impact debris from the comet.” Much had also been destroyed by massive volcanic activity following the impact, including the covering of several canals. These outflows of volcanic materials would continue on and off for many months at times obscuring a good deal of the planet. One of the last cities on Mars was gone probably because the protective dome had been shattered by the secondary impacts. And without displaying even reflective qualities it must have been at least partially buried by impact debris. In the report it was estimated that at least one million Martians had probably been killed with the loss of this city. This must have been a crushing blow to the Martians. At the time we could only hope that it was enough to at least push back the date of their anticipated next invasion.

It was suspected that while Chryse still showed several canals in the general area it is doubtful that they could have survived penetration by debris and were probably rendered useless at this time as well. We did not have the instrumentation needed to verify damage to the canals at the time. There was no way to tell if any underground facilities near the city had been spared, but considering the damage to the above ground city and the new impact crater, survival seemed a long-shot at best. There was after all a new rather large hole in the ground that nothing in the impact area could have survived no matter how deep the Martians had dug. The final answer would lie in whether or not these canals were eventually repaired. His team’s study also showed that the Martian atmospheric pressure seemed to have lost an additional six percent of its value in one shot! The planet was now confirmed to be a dying place, at least on its surface, as even the well-adapted Martians surely could not live on its desiccated surface for long periods of time even at the lowest elevations which held the highest atmospheric pressure. It would not be long before any type of advanced life on the surface of Mars would no longer be tenable.

Those who were now keeping a very close eye on Mars were also able to see that even in the short period of time that we humans have been keeping track of Martian activities the areas upon which lush Martian vegetation had grown was now some 20% less than our first measurements. It would seem that large areas of Mars were either purposely abandoned as a source of food or were simply unable to support Martian vegetation no matter what the Martians were doing. On Earth this massive loss of productive agricultural area would have had grave consequences. What this news meant to the Martians we could only guess. We knew they were running out of options as far as food sources were concerned. Were they finding new ways to produce the foods they needed or were they ‘trimming’ their population? My thoughts were of Martians ‘acquiring’ more humans for food from Earth as well as probably breeding many more on Mars.

The Mars Watch Program teams had done much work investigating the Chryse area including data arrived at by interpretation of Martian Electronic Documents.

Chryse Regio, recently re-named Chryse Planitia from the Greek “Golden Plain” shows a good deal of past water erosion but there is little erosion by water in this epoch. It had been the final destination for the flow of water from the local southern highlands and the Tharsis bulge. The Planitia is in fact one of the lowest areas on the surface of Mars and was once a vast ocean. Martian documents report many ancient rivers once flowed strongly into the area. It is due to this low area and matched by what the Martians refer to as “an abundance of sub-surface water” that the Martians built one of their final cities on the surface of Mars. During what have been named the Hesperian and Amazonian periods on Mars large outflow channels developed (some converted to canals) with a strong ancient shoreline said to be easily seen from low Martian orbit.

Naturally newspapers around the world covered the story. But there seemed to be a general lack of victual comments in most of the stories (but not all, most notably the New Sydney Times which headlined “BLOODY MARTIANS LOSE A CITY, One Down – Three To Go!”), which were simply published as regular news reports with very little editorial comment. One newspaper even published a letter they had received which spoke of Earth sending “aid to our solar neighbors on Mars.” How this aid was expected to be sent to the forth planet from the Sun was not explained by the writer. It was published without comment by the paper. This response to the disaster on Mars was seen by Dr. Freud and most of Directorate L as a softening of the Earth’s population to things Martian. He recommended that more reports of Martian attacks be placed into the public record to curb any softening of world opinion with a close eye on popular reaction. One writer even added, “It’s a pity they make themselves as unapproachable. It would be curious to know how they live on another planet; we might learn a thing or two.”

It seemed to be a good time to remind the general public, once again, about just how deadly our enemies on Mars could be. We were after all a full generation away from the brutal Martian War. Stories soon found their way into newspapers around the world of Martian atrocities. “News” reports of events on Mars were soon being broadcast from the small number of radio stations in operation at the time. By now there were forty-three in the United States and only fifty-six spread out over the rest of the world, mostly in Western Europe. Each one of the ‘independent’ radio stations had a Committee staff member readily available to “help direct news and commentary when called upon.” Because of the visible damage caused by the comet the Committee executive staff estimated that the anticipated invasion could not be expected any earlier than 1935. Earth it would seem had been given a bit more time to prepare. We would need just about all of it. Complacency was not something we could afford to indulge in.

Editor’s Note: As a direct result of the massive impact on Mars Prime a highest level meeting was held in the Central Leadership Committee Chamber – During this meeting of the Leadership Counsel all options were discussed concerning plans to occupy Earth and move Mars Prime to the fourth planet – Options were also discussed which would lead to a massive new effort to develop new areas beneath the surface of Mars and cancel Earth options – Although the leadership was split on the possible work to receive the greatest development it was finally commanded to end any new sub-surface works and focus all efforts on acquiring the fourth planet for Mars Prime occupation – It was further commanded that no greater than half of Mars Prime population would re-locate to Earth at the end of military operations.

THE EVER EXPANDING UNIVERSE

At the same time we were confirming the loss of a Martian surface city Professor Edwin Hubble, a much valued member of the Mars Watch Program, was able to confirm that the Universe did indeed extend well beyond the edges of the Milky Way as the Martian documents had revealed (Ref: Martian Electrical Document 227P12). Objects once thought to have been nebulous gasses within the Milky Way are now seen to be individual galaxies in their own right. The Martian Electronic Documents had also reported the fantastic possibility that the Universe is actually expanding all around us. The earlier “expanding Cosmic Egg Theory” (Ref: Martian Electrical Document 294P14). Dr. Hubble planned to look into this report and attempt to confirm its validity by measuring local galaxies and their movements using a technique known as Doppler shift. If the light from a distant object in space is shifted towards the blue end of the spectrum the object is moving towards the Earth. If however, the light is shifted to the red end of the spectrum the object is known to be moving away. The amount of such a red or blue shift should tell Dr. Hubble just how fast and how far an object is moving and in which direction.

Since all of the Martian astronomical work which can be investigated by Earth based astronomers had so far proven to be quite correct (Ref: Martian Electrical Document 227P12) he had already stated that he had no reason to disbelieve the “Martian theory of Universal Expansion”. Hubble remarked, “Eventually we reach the dim boundary – the utmost limits of our telescopes. There we measure shadows, and we search among ghostly errors of measurement for landmarks that are scarcely more substantial. The search will continue. Not until the empirical resources are exhausted need we pass on to the dreamy realms of speculation.”

We were also beginning to get some hints from other Martian documents that a good deal of what made up the universe of either energy or matter was invisible to much of their advanced astronomical devices. They seemed to be referring to nearly 95% of the material of the universe as somehow being “dark”. What this could be no one had a clue. There were also recently translated reports that the Martians could count an incredible eight billion Mars or Earth like planets in our Milky Way galaxy alone! No one, and I mean no one, believed that report, but what would it mean to mankind and our sense of self if it were true? Mankind’s quaint thought that we were unique in all of space and time, shocked by the brutal ‘hand’ of a Martian had been completely destroyed for all time.

The massive scale of the universe now glimpsed by man had now dwarfed mankind, and with it the cold reality that the rest of the universe had no interest in mankind’s survival. As far as we could ascertain, only mankind had a true stake in our survival. We were indeed alone in the vastness of space, at least locally save the brutal Martians who were just over the horizon, and watching our every move and perhaps a few ‘others’.

It seemed that we still had a great deal to learn from our Martian neighbors even though it was doubtful we would ever have the chance for any peaceful dialogue. This was a great loss to both planets as peaceful contact would undoubtedly be very productive for both species living as we are in the cold unforgiving vastness of space. To Martians, humans were like ants running around their destroyed sand piles putting back the pile of sand before the next time they came by to kick it down. I wondered who or what may be looking at the Martians and getting ready to knock over their sand pile!

What we needed was to create a situation by which we could force the Martians to see mankind as not necessarily equal, but at least as a species demanding some level of respect. In my view only by creating a powerful military force that could match the Martians on Earth and beyond would such respect ever come. Their respect had to be earned and we could not earn it by showing any weakness. Some in the Committee felt that our war upon ourselves did in fact show the Martians how brutal we could be to our own species, but would that brutality shown by man translate to any type of respect by the Martians? I had my doubts. Self destruction was not a good way to impress anyone.

MAGIC – MOST SECRET CoT

Magic Order MO-271

Immediate: Anti-Committee and anti-Magic organizations are to be formed with the purpose of “collecting” individuals who harbor ill-will against this organization or our work. This will allow monitoring and full control of these organizations. When the time comes these members will be arrested and held during any future Martian conflict. Files will be kept on all members not working directly for the Committee.

MAGIC THREE-NEW YORK

MAGIC – MOST SECRET CoT

A HYBRID TERRORIST IDENTIFIED

Reports had by now come in from American justice authorities that after several years of investigation they had identified the hybrid responsible for designing and planting the bomb used during the 16 September 1920 attack on Wall Street in Upper-New York City. They identified H-Mario Buda, an Italian national as the bomb maker. Investigators close to the case and working under young Mr. Hoover stated that Buda, a close associate of hybrid convicted murderers Sacco and Vanzetti, was identified as the bomb maker by his nephew H-Frank Maffi and further collaborated by H-Charles Poggi recently apprehended by authorities on other matters. Buda was known to be very experienced working with dynamite as well as other explosives. In the past it was reported that he had placed several explosive devices using sash weights as shrapnel as well as using other people to plant and eventually be killed by these devices. Thought to be living somewhere in Italy at this time there was now a world-wide search underway for H-Mario Buda – a known member of the Martian Brotherhood. Bureau of Investigation agents, working with Tango operatives were soon hot on the trail of the Upper-New York City bomber. He was to be taken dead or alive, with dead the much preferred option.

Earth Radio Progresses

We knew that our crude new technology (as compared to the Martians) using radio waves would not be strong enough for two-way communication with the Martians unless we on Earth built a world-wide series of large devices not only for Earth transmission, but to receive Martian transmissions. Some of our best people such as Dutch engineer Hanso Schotanus Idzerda and Argentina engineer Enrique Telemaco Susini were hard at work on the problem and had been for a good while. It was a long shot to speak to the Martians, in more ways than one – we all knew that – but the public was informed that our intentions were peaceful and that the work would continue if only to improve our own technology. What the public was unaware of was the real reason for our efforts. It was to put together a powerful series of radio monitoring devices in order to give Earth’s defense forces another system of warning in the event of any impending attack from Mars and possibly intercept for decoding any radio transmission as well as later broadcasting false messages for the Martians to pick up (Psyop). The Committee did not believe that any peace incentives would sway the Martians, but it did provide political cover for this part of the operation. The Mars Watch Program had now become both radio and optical in nature.

As back-engineered information became available from the people working on the Martian machines the teams responsible for the radio transmissions and listening stations were able to in-crease the capabilities of our radio equipment tenfold. Time and time again as new developments “came on line” we on Earth were getting better and better at tuning in on Mars. We also knew that the Martians were keeping just as good and probably better watch on Earth. With this in mind any business pertaining to the Executive Committee of Twelve or the Magic Twelve was still being sent either by fast aircraft or encoded Morse code using undersea and buried cables. No actual classified Committee information was to be sent by radio for fear of Martian interception. Only later would we develop a full propaganda program designed to send misleading radio messages expected to be intercepted by the Martians. In fact, we began sending false and misleading radio messages thought to be picked up by the Martians almost as soon as we could, but these were not part of a concentrated propaganda effort. We did however, have a section in the Committee which had the job of sending out false radio transmitters to mislead the Martians, but it was not yet a priority. That would come later as we prepared for the next expected Martian War.

It was noted during our March 1923 Committee conference on radio development that Dr. Tesla had been one of the first to pick up interplanetary radio transmissions from Mars as far back as January 1900. The signal he received was weak, but real, yet even the master electronic genius of Tesla could not confirm that the broadcast was coming directly to Earth from Mars at the time. He would later report to the Committee that, “The changes [in the signal] I noted were taking place periodically, and with such a clear suggestion of number and order that they were not traceable to any cause then known to me. It was sometime afterward (post Martian invasion) when the thought flashed upon my mind that the disturbances I had observed might be due to intelligent control. I am familiar with such electrical disturbances as are produced by the Sun, Aurora Borealis and Earth currents, and I was as sure as I could be of any fact that these variations were due to none of these causes. The nature of my experiments precluded the possibility of the changes being produced by atmospheric disturbances. Although I could not decipher their meaning, it was impossible for me to think of them as having been entirely accidental. A purpose was behind these signals; they are the results of an attempt by some beings, not our world, to speak to us by signals. I am absolutely certain that they are not caused by anything terrestrial.”

He could not have known when he first received the signal that within months Martians would be invading Earth! What Tesla had picked up were radio messages by the Martians to their Earth invasion forces. However, even if he had been able to verify that the radio messages were from Mars, at the time we had no indication that the Martians were hostile, and we had no way of deciphering the messages. Only later were we able to decipher a few sections of the integrated messages that Tesla had recorded on a crude wire recording device. Tesla had been correct. They were Martian radio transmissions.

At the time professor Garrett Serviss stepped into the discussion and stated, “So to many it has not appeared unreasonable to assume that, since it is possible to transmit electric impulses for considerable distances over the Earth’s surface by the simple propagation of a series of waves, or undulations, without connecting wires, it may also be possible for us to send impulses through the ether from planet to planet as the Martians clearly do.”

After an interview with Dr. Tesla, New York Times reporter Waldermar Kaempffert, never a fan of any type of communication with the Martians, would describe Tesla as a “medieval practitioner of black arts as vague as an oriental mystic.” He also added that those who wrote about such things “…though they could not understand what Tesla was talking about, were enthralled with his proposals to communicate with Mars and to transmit power without wires over vast distances.”

As was his way Tesla said very little to his critics, that was until a group of occultists began to spread the word that Tesla was either a Martian himself or perhaps a hybrid spy or even a Venusian who had landed on Earth by one of their spacecraft. Tesla knew that any heartfelt response he gave could easily be misinterpret by the Press so he simply stated that such claims were silly and that he had “far too much work to do to comment on such ridicules matters.”

On the civilian side of the radio equation we could report that over 500 commercial radio stations were in operation by this time in the United States alone with another 620 in operation around the rest of the world most of which were in Europe and Asia. In the still dangerous oligarchy of the Soviet Union radio was still very tightly controlled. The people were allowed to own a radio-tochka or radio-point, which could receive only a single frequency which of course was fully controlled by the Communist government. Anyone attempting to “use other frequencies” could well find themselves working a coal mine in Siberia or worse!

It was also at this time, if I recall correctly, that workers began to set up the first true computing machines using radio vacuum tubes to conduct calculations. They were crude but we were certain that future work would not only produce faster machines but much smaller ones. These first tube devices were about the size of an average office and always quite hot. Keeping them cool was a full time job. In fact they were far too hot to keep in any small underground facility no matter how well ventilated it was. We would need to find a way to do mathematical computations in a whole new manor before we could place large computer systems underground. Eventually, this problem would be solved as massive 250 ton machines would go into operation – but that development was several years away.

The 301 or Type IV “Accounting Machine” had been originally designed to use a card-controlled method which would allow for mathematical calculations but it was soon adapted to tubes which made the work move along much faster. It could make 100 calculations per minute and print out 100 cards with the information at the same time. The Committee would spend a great deal of money and time producing these machines and improving them as fast as we could.

[END PART 39]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 40: Unidentified craft, Earth moves and a little man from Germany.]

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-14)(Continue)

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[PART 14]

[Continued From Last Week]

After many years of study by a combined team from Directorates G and L it became quite clear that certain groups of full-humans were indeed much less adapted to living in modern civilized environments. It was also clear certain groups were developing much slower than other full-human groups. The Committee would hold this detailed report “close to the vest” as to be able to “study and address the problem away from the public spotlight.” Riots we did not need. Our small group within the Committee had put forth a plan that perhaps when things settled down on the Martian front this situation could be addressed with education, counseling, training, etc, either within or outside of confinement. For the time being the problem needed to be set aside. Whether or not any decisive action would be taken in the future remained to be seen. Focus now had to be on keeping the planet united and focused on the Martians and their hybrid allies.

Looking back and focusing on the hybrids we should have viewed these hybrid crimes as an interplanetary insurgency readying itself for future terrorist attacks on our planet. Unfortunately, social politics had been allowed to cripple and blind us from the reality we all knew to be true. At that critical point we failed to step up and ignore loud criticisms from a small minority of “social” individuals and so-called pro-hybrid peace groups attempting to block efforts by the authorities, to go after these terrorists and do what needed to be done to stop them. Most members of the Committee felt that we should have simply dealt with these terrorists with a “fatal solution” before they could mount any devastating attacks rather than allow cries of “you are an anti-hybridist” to make us weak. The always-destructive social groups were using peace protests as a weapon of war and many within the halls of the Committee felt the problem should have been faced down with stronger determination and not attempt to ‘dialogue’ with the opposition. That political weakness would eventually cost thousands of lives. It is a lesson some Committee members have yet to fully learn as we continue to allow certain full-human groups on Earth to engage in massive criminal behavior without proper corrective action (education, supervision, ‘medical adjustment’, detention, banishment, etc.) to end those problems. However, that policy changed when it came to hybrids after the first massive hybrid attack, and it remains in place today. Termination has become policy for all captured hybrid terrorists.

Later, intelligence operatives would indicate the mostly hybrid organization was originally formed around a loosely connected central group, which consisted of some 100 members with five leading individuals. These leaders were the “organizers and prime target callers” known within the Brotherhood as the “Primary Five” (Mars-bred hybrids only). It was clear within their organizational structure the hybrids had adopted the group-think mentality of the Martians. This was their weakness and we could exploit this flaw. Overall, no more than 20 active groups would be formed from this base of around 1000 individuals, but they were to become very active. We would later discover at the very least the “Primary Five” were in direct radio contact with Martian advanced forces still orbiting the Earth as well as operating in the North and South Polar Regions. It was not surprising to later learn the Martian Brotherhood had received direct orders from the Martians on Mars on exactly which individuals and areas to target for their attacks. We would also come to learn the “Primary Five” were answerable to a radio contact from Mars (a superior Martian A) known only as “The Guiding One” (Ref: Martian Electric Document 74D46). This meant that the most sophisticated and powerful radios operating on Earth were in the hands of the enemy. Unfortunately, we would never establish who The Guiding One was, as this Martian A never seems to have made it to Earth.

It seemed mankind was still in an active war with the Martians, the only problem was – we didn’t realize it yet! We would soon be dealing with do-gooders who had formed several hybrid aid organizations as well. Most authorities wrongly looked at this as a policing problem not a terrorist issue. Naturally the Committee soon had operatives well situated in several of these organizations reporting to Committee security forces. As it turned out we did not have enough individuals in place or enough information coming out. Only later would we fix that oversight.

The opening terrorist salvo by the Martian Brotherhood against mankind would be made at the Courrieres’ mine in France and it would be very costly. We first heard about the attack in the middle of the night. Costly as it was it did cause world leaders to focus on the hybrid problem and really begin to deal with it on a realistic basis. The kit gloves were off – we finally realized that we were still at war with Mars! That final realization would cost over a thousand lives.

THE COURRIERES MINE ‘DISASTER’

10 March 1906

Before the war the French railway system and French coal output had been second only to Great Britain in Europe. Thanks to Napoleon and later French leaders France had modernized at such a great speed that by the start of the First Martian War there was a good deal of national pride in their industrialization. Sadly much had been destroyed during the Martian War, but a core element was still very much in place and it did not take the French long, organized from a recovering Paris, to push production back to the forefront. Courrieres Mine was very much part of that push to move forward and recover.

I felt at the time that events which occurred at the mine disaster at Courrieres, France, was probably an inevitable event, at least one like it, but one that nevertheless should have been avoided. The Courrieres Mine operation was, and is, under the direction of Directorates A and B of the Executive Committee of Twelve. The mine was one of a number of operations put into place by the Committee to not only provide much needed jobs for the people of the area, but for the much needed coal being produced which, along with oil, and gas was providing the energy needed to rebuild our shattered economics. Blame, if that is what is required, goes to the Committee for perhaps pushing the operation faster and harder than it was possibly capable of operating. The need for security against a terrorist attack was not taken into proper account and it cost us dearly. It was a lesson we needed to learn and there was little time to learn such lessons.

On 10 March 1906, the men who worked at the mine paid the price for such errors. At 6:30 in the morning a huge explosion occurred deep within the mine. The mine, having originally begun operations in 1852, had been reactivated after repairs had been completed due to the destruction of its surface facilities as a result of the First Martian War. It is now realized that these repairs had not been sufficient enough, and in that coal dust was not being removed as well as it may have been possible to remove. It would be the igniting of this coal dust by a hand carried bomb, which is now known to have caused the deadly blast. That a member of the terrorist group the Martian Brotherhood could get to the center of the mine was an error that was inexcusable. We had lost control.

The explosion had been powerful enough to throw the worker’s elevator cage from Shaft 3 to surface killing all on board. Shaft 4 elevator was also explosively pushed almost to the surface, but was jammed on the shaft rig. Several men were taken from that elevator alive, however only two of 30 survived the night. The elevator on Shaft 2 stayed below ground, but when it was raised by rescue workers it contained only the bodies of dead miners. The elevator on Shaft 1 was unaffected and would serve as the only way into the mine during rescue operations.

Editor’s Note: This was the first successful major operation by hybrids against the humans since the end of the First Terrain War.

Rescue attempts began immediately as teams of miners and rescuers worked their way along the tunnels. Very few, still deep in the mine when rescue workers entered, would be found alive, however, some six hundred miners closer to the entrance points were able to make it to the surface in the first few hours after the disaster began. By 1 April rescuers had located a few deep miners alive and had recovered some 194 bodies. Earlier there had been some good news as rescue teams had been able to reach thirteen miners on 30 March some twenty days after the explosion. These men, more dead than alive, had survived by eating two of the mine horses after their usual daily food rations they regularly took down to the mine had been consumed.

The last survivor was pulled from the wreckage of tunnel number 16 on 4 April. In all, the worst mining disaster in recent European history had cost the lives of 1,099 miners. Nevertheless, the mine would re-open a year later with new safety equipment and security regulations in place. This disaster was great and heartfelt, but the requirement to fuel the recovery of Europe from the ravages of the First Martian War was much greater. All knew we needed to continue to build up mankind’s resources in order to defeat an enemy which none could predict where they would return or when.

After the rescue and recovery efforts had been completed a Committee review showed security at the mine had been allowed to go to levels, which virtually guaranteed that this type of attack could occur. And, even though bringing the mine back into operation was critical, care was taken to insure new safety and security features, such as gas and dust removal equipment, security fencing, and guards checking passes and all equipment going into the mine would be in place and operating before new mining crews were allowed back to work. It was also found that many areas then being excavated underground by the Committee, including the three major underground city projects, were lacking in essential security and safety features. These problems of safety and security were given a much higher priority when the Committee appointed a team of mining engineers to overview all mine and underground projects to bring them up to as high a level as could be expected when it came to operational safety as well as military and civilian guards for control of all entry points. The team would report directly to an assistant director who had personal oversight of the underground operations. Accidents were still going to happen and lives were going to be lost; their job would be to prevent as many large ones as possible as well as stop any potential terrorist attacks on the underground facilities.

It would not be long before the Committee had even more pressing problems to deal with. The Martians were about to inform the world they were still very much interested in taking the Earth for themselves and they had a weapon to use that mankind had not even dreamed was possible. They would use the Earth itself to attack the creatures that called it home. This was high geo-technology at its greatest and most deadly. Needless to say, there were no public reports on the disaster at the mine, which had any reference to Martians or the Martian Brotherhood. The fact we knew they existed was a well kept Committee secret, at least for a while, even though they had sent letters to several newspapers announcing their involvement in the mine disaster. The newspapers were convinced the letters were all hoaxes and did not play up the terrorist angle, at least not at the time. (In point of fact, Directorate L had sent several letters to newspapers claiming to have bombed the mine using several false group names. These were soon shown to be hoaxes, exactly as the Committee had intended. The propaganda group had done a very good job.)

This incident showed we needed to keep much better track of all hybrids on this planet ‘friendly’ or not. It was also clear that even this better tracking could not keep this terrorist situation out of the public’s view forever. The only thing the general public knew at the time was this attack had been made by hybrids. They did not know they were very well organized or being directly supported and supplied by the Martians. Eventually the Martian Brotherhood’s existence was going to be common knowledge. We needed a plan to deal with that. The solution to that problem was to develop a team of Martian hybrid experts to go after them and kill as many of the Martian Brotherhood as we could find as fast as we could find them. This was a terrorist war and we were not about to hold back anything that would help us defeat the Martians or their allies on Earth. This was “kill or be killed” and the Committee was not going to allow anyone, and we meant anyone, to stand in our way.

MAGIC – MOST SECRET CoT

Magic Order MO-55
Immediate: Identification cards for hybrids are to be re-issued with the new name designation of “H”. Example: A hybrid named John Smith will be H-John Smith. When spoken to, all hybrids will be referred to as “H” before first names are to be used. There are to be no exceptions to this order except for Excalibur personnel. Hybrids refusing this order will be placed into committee custody immediately and held indefinitely in one of the ‘holding’ properties.
MAGIC THREE-LONDON

MAGIC – MOST SECRET CoT

When new ID cards were issued for all hybrids no one put up much of an argument since the card issuing department had by then reported greatly increased criminal activity by hybrids. However, when it was suggested that the hybrids be required to sew an ‘H’ on all of their clothing as an easy identifiable marking there were more than a few protests. In the wake of these protests and the possible resignation of at least three of the Magic Twelve, the full Committee soon backed away from that suggestion. It was, as Committee notes indicated “taken off the table for the time being,” but it was not forgotten. I must say I was happy about that decision to forgo the ‘H’ on the clothing. We had enough problems to deal with without creating new ones. We needed unity not division.

As far as the Martians were concerned they were not about to let us forget they were still around and still very active when it came to attacking Earth. They would continue to harass Earth’s population in as many ways as they could and keep a very close eye on humanity.

[END PART 14]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 15: Once again the Martians are on the move and so is the Earth.]

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-5)

12

[PART 5]

WHAT I SAW IN OLD LONDON

I had been asleep for – well, I don’t really know how long. Seemingly endless and fearsome darkness had been all around me. Nothingness commanded my mind. Time had become only a distant blended dream; a soft terrible memory of which I could barely relate and could not understand. I only know that sleep had been forced upon me by an utter exhaustion of which I had never before known. It was a weariness that came from deep within my being and its demands had been relentless – so not being able to continue I slept. On the open ground I lie sleeping raw as we called it. I had simply dropped to the ground with the need so deep for sleep that I had not even bothered to check for any Martians. It would not have mattered for I was all but spent. I could not have run even if I had wanted to. The enemy had taken all of my strength and much of my will. I remember thinking: No human being can keep permanently afraid: fear goes at last to the back of one’s mind, accepted, and shelved, and done with. I was done with it.

When I awoke on that first day in our new world the sweet smell of death was everywhere, burned deep into a devastated landscape as I once again thrust my senses towards a new reality. For a second, just a second mind you, between awakening and my restless sleep, a thought had come to my wounded mind it had all been a dream. It was time to wake up now, time to go to work and earn my keep. After all, there was much work to be done. It was time to throw off this bloody nightmare. I was as if beside myself with a visceral thought that perhaps I would not be able to regain what had once been myself. Was I only dreaming? I knew a tightly controlled mind; a subconscious inner will to survive could create a fantasy world that would be all too real for someone in such a terrible situation. Was my mind projecting a fantasy world for a damaged mind? Was this really happening to me or was I but one of millions held by the Martians for whatever fate had been deemed by the gods?

Smoke and dust choked the air as I coughed and sat up to look around. This was not one of London’s famous perpetual fogs put forth due to the constant burning of soft coal. This was something other worldly. I rubbed my eyes to realize as far as I could understand that this was no dream and I was utterly alone. There was nothing, nothing I could recognize, nothing I could focus on to give me direction, at least not on the wasted ground all around me. I yelled at the top of my voice and found no reply, not even an echo as the damaged atmosphere seemed to smother even this pitiful cry for help. The world was still, damp, cold and utterly alien. I thought, There is not a breath of wind this morning, and everything is strangely still. Even the birds are hushed.

As I surveyed my new alien world I had the overwhelming sense that I was truly on another planet. I was nothing more than a stranger in a strange land. I looked up to see a Sun trying to force its weak rays upon this damaged ground. No, it was not the complete defined disk of our local star giving warm life, only a cold glowing light behind the mask of gray dirty airborne debris desperately struggling to command my sky. My sky? I laughed at the very thought. But, it was enough for a while, even though I could feel the sharp moist chill of the morning biting in this strange land. At least I thought it was morning. My thoughts were confused. Was I insane? But which way was I to go? I needed direction. I needed a plan. I needed to get the hell out of here! I needed to find food and water if I was to survive. My stomach burned. I could not remember the last time I had eaten. It all seemed so unreal.

In my confusion I somehow remembered a lesson I had taken from my days in the military of finding ones way without a compass. Searching around I found a burnt rod of metal about 4 feet long and pushed it into the ground and thus found the shadow of my dim companion. At its tip I placed a small burnt stone and simply waited. After about an hour of rest and sharp observation I placed a second small stone at the tip of the new shadow position. From these I drew a line on the ground. This was east to west. This was the beginning of my journey – the start of my new unknown life.

Life? I wondered if I would ever find any. Was I truly alone? As hard as I could I pushed the thought from my mind. Insanity? No! Such rubbish. There had to be others. There just had to be. I began to sob uncontrollably. No! Stop this nonsense. Get up man, Move. Start acting like a human being. You are no Martian, you are a man and this is your world!    My world?      …Indeed! I laughed uncontrollably.

I understood, as best I could, I had been somewhere southwest of London when utter exhaustion overcame me. No matter what remained there I knew, or at least hoped, there would be something or someone in what remained of Old London to sustain me. It had been after all the most populated city upon this Earth before ‘they’ came. So I began to walk towards the northeast. As I began to pace onward I asked myself, actually asked myself out loud, if I had any fear? Anyone hearing my ‘conversation’ might have surmised I was quite mad. Perhaps I was. Certainly there was nothing I could focus on to challenge that possibility. However, I quickly decided this new world was real and I was not insane and had no actual fear, just a resolve to survive. Fear, after all, at this point at least would have been a luxury I could not afford. At any rate I was far too numb for any fear. I guess my whole being was too shocked for any such feeling – so on I went. And if a Martian found me, well, I would meet my fate to whatever end came as a member of humanity, but I would not face a Martian with any fear. I had that much determination at least. If I found one I would do my best to kill it. Perhaps I was insane. Again I laughed out loud. Perhaps…?

As I walked closer to what I thought was old London, the smoke which had become my constant companion became thicker. Keeping to the high ground knowing I had to keep away from lower depressed areas for these may yet hold the deadly Martian Black Smoke. In areas where it had once been a sticky gray/black ash could be seen. More and more buildings or rather their haphazard stone debris that had once been buildings, appeared, many still on fire or smoldering. I remember wondering what we would do with all of these bricks and who was going to sweep up this mess. My mind was clearly not yet set to any kind of reality. I became angry at the world and then at myself for not doing a better job in dealing with these, these bloody Martians. My anger had turned inward and had no other place to go. I thought: What had I done? What could I have done other than fight alongside the rest of a suffering humanity? Press on – keep walking. There is danger here.

Fire, smoke and the sweet smelling dust of death were my world now. Charred pieces of bone and flesh could be seen from time to time half-covered by dust and smoke partials still raining from the evil skies above. Then I saw it, and it was magnificent. I had never realized how much this small yet greatly significant edifice meant to me and perhaps many others who had for the most part generally ignored it before the war. Yet, there it was, standing defiantly with its proud colors literally the only non-gray/black I could see. And even though it had dust upon its proud and stately surface for me it was a monument of great importance. My emotions suddenly burst upon me as I ran, stumbled, fell, ran again and reached out, crying, sobbing,   …to touch the top of the bright red postbox! All was not lost in Old London. That I knew, for at arm’s length was proof, proof that something, something by the gods, had survived the onslaught. There had to be more. There had to be. I sat down and laughed as hard as I ever had. To this day I know not why. Insanity seemed to rule my brave new world.

I carved my name on the side of this monument to an earlier time so as to let anyone else who may have survived know that they were not alone, that another human had passed this way. I carved an arrow dictating my direction of travel. I pressed on. I kept walking. Kept moving. No Martians to be seen – not here at least.

Moving ever forward through more piles of rubble I knew I was passing the temporary graves of thousands, no, tens of thousands of people. I could not see a single one, but I could easily smell the corpses of these war crafted mass graves. All was gray and black. Dust and then more dust and even more bloody dust! The smell, if I passed too close to one area or another burnt pile, was overwhelming. So was so much so it made my eyes burn. Or perhaps it was just the gas and dust which was swirling about. The chill was still in the air as I continued on. As I did a sheet of half-burnt newspaper blew against my legs and I picked it up. “British government moves east out of London to…” It reported nothing but old news from a time when mankind faced its greatest mortality. Is it all over?

I was getting weaker now, very weak. The thought had finally crossed my mind that I might not make it. I still had not found any food even though there had been a few sources of water, but not many. I kept my eyes open as I carefully picked my way around a sunken wall. I must have placed my feet in a soft spot for it was here that I lost my balance, rolling down a small embankment of debris landing hard at the bottom. I had fallen into a pit and as I rolled over and opened my eyes I found I was looking directly at the steel cowl of a Martian Walking Machine!

I tried to pick myself up, but I soon found myself back in the pit desperately trying to escape when I suddenly realized the Martian machine was not moving. Turning to face the machine I saw that its cold steel frame was covered with a fine layer of dust half buried in the same pit as I. There was no need to escape for the creatures that had commanded this deadly machine were themselves quite dead. After the machine had fallen the crew had opened the small lower hatch to what end they probably did not even know. I doubt they even knew what was killing them. I had come to believe they did not even care. All that remained were the dusty skeletal remains of three Martians scattered on top of each other near the hatch.

Looking at the hatch I could see the crows had taken most of what had remained from what had probably been a meal for a starving pack of dogs. Their discarded feathers had said as much. The few crows which remained did not have so much as a small piece of gray flesh left for them to tear off. There was nothing more to see in this small space which had witnessed the end of three who would be the masters of Earth. Godless Martian bastards. I dusted myself off, pulled myself out of the pit and continued on my way. Nothing to see here.

At more than one area along my route I saw areas where sparsely covered corpse had been dug up and devoured by dogs. Bits and pieces of which could not be taken as food for these packs of now wild animals remained.

I had been walking for half a day, best I could guess, when a small pack of dogs crossed my path. It crossed my mind that this was the first life I had seen for days. Then the cruel reality pushed forward in my damaged mind. They looked hungry and most desperate, but a few rocks placed well into the pack removed their attempt to use me as a new meal – all that is accept one. It was not the largest but it was nevertheless the most determined. I dare not turn my back on this one – no not this one as it sized me up. Making its final decision it came snarling directly at me. To me it seemed nearly a lifetime before it came into range of the metal pipe I had with me from my Sun direction work. The crack of the skull full breath decided the moment as the animal died before it stopped moving, knocking me over with its momentum. The pack moved on – no meal today. They needed easier pray. Life or death was the only struggle now. This time it was man who held the high ground. The thought made me laugh – man indeed.

For some strange reason the words of Charles Darwin flashed upon my wounded mind. “With all his noble qualities, with all these exalted powers, man still bears in his bodily frame the indelible stamp of his lowly origin.” What would the great man make of humanity now? Once again I looked around for any Martians dead or alive and could see none. Where were these deadly creatures? It seemed strange not to see or at least hear another one of their beastly machines. Perhaps they had moved on. What part of this world were they terrifying now?

As I stared at my kill I found another use for the sharp end of my primitive weapon. I was now truly the primitive. Strange as it sounds, even today as I speak these words, I took the raw meat that had been the beast to sustain myself. It was as if I stood aside and watched myself do the work and then watched myself eat. I remember thinking: Is this then only a dream after all? Is this what it meant to be truly insane? Press on. Keep moving or die.

It was two more hours by my reckoning before I saw the first dust covered corpse of what had been a man, half crushed and covered with dust. Poor sod – never had a chance. Moving slowly past I could see that the bottom half had been completely eaten away. Wild dogs no doubt. Just beyond, more corpses – more pieces gone to wild animals. I kept my weapons very handy; my primitive spear and club. I was nothing more than Iron Age man on the hunt. The Martians had deemed it so. I was thinking that it could very well be a bit dicey finding a safe place to sleep tonight. Dogs! Damned dogs! Fog now began to move all around me. It was a real fog – no Martian Black Smoke was this. It was a London fog and it almost seemed, well… safe… familiar. Keep moving.

A DUST COVERED MAN IN THE FOG

As I continued to make my way towards what I now knew would be a devastated London it was not the dogs that I heard next. These new sounds were the mad cries of a man in the fog. I was no longer alone. At first I could not see him even in the generally light fog, but his voice was sharp and very distressed. This at least was not too surprising considering the circumstance we found ourselves in.

I was about to cry out to him when I heard him say, “This oafish crowd, gaping, stinking, bombing, shooting, throat-slitting, cringing brawl of gawky under-nourished riff-raff. Clear the Earth of them.”

His words did not make any sense to me. As I held my crude weapons with even greater determination I remember thinking it somehow seemed appropriate that the first of humanity I should discover alive in my shattered world should be one as mad as I surely was. I could hear him still as he came closer talking to himself with determined force.

“Our universe is not merely bankrupt; there remains no dividend at all; it has not simply liquidated; it is going clean out of existence, leaving not a wreck behind.”

With that he stopped, cold in his tracks, as we faced each other not ten yards away.

“Stop!” He said even though I was not moving. “There is no food about here. This is my country. All this hill down to the river, and back to Clapham, and up to the edge of the common. There is only food for one.”

I told the dust covered man in the torn uniform of a Home guard artilleryman that I had no desire to stay here. I told him that I was moving on to the center of London; what was left of it at any rate. Neither of us knew at the time that the Martians were finished – at least for now.

“I have no interest in your area my good man. London proper is where I am headed.”

He reported that he had been there and had seen some of their work.

“They’ve gone away across London. I guess they’ve got a bigger camp there. Of a night, all over there, Hampstead way, the sky is alive with their lights. By day light you can’t. But nearer – I haven’t seen them, five days. They kept on coming. These green stars – I’ve seen none these five or six days, but I’ve no doubt they’re falling somewhere every night. Nothing to be done. We’re under! We’re beat!”

I was far too tired to argue with him as I sat down to rest even as I kept my eyes firmly planted on my surroundings and on the dust covered man. “No Martians, as you say, for a few days.”

I thought about his remark about the food, “It seems they want us for food. First, they’ll smash us up – ships, machines, guns, cities, all the order and organization. All that will go.”

The artilleryman’s mind seemed to wander about for a thought as he stared blankly about the still thinning fog. As he spoke again it was as if I was not even there. He looked right past me, eyes glazed over. He seemed to be losing his grip on reality. He was not alone in that aspect.

“A Martian has only to go a few miles to get a crowd on the run. And I saw one, one day, out by Wandsworth, picking houses to pieces and routing among the wreckage.” He began to laugh. “But they won’t keep on doing that. So, soon as they’ve settled all our guns and ships and smashed our railways and done all the things they are doing over there, they will begin catching us systematic, picking the best and storing us in cages and things. That’s what they will start doing in a bit.”

I started to say something but as he walked away towards the west he continued to speak as to himself. I was no longer part of his new world. Once again he was utterly alone. So was I.

“I tell you,” he said waving his arms in front of him, “I’m grim set on living. We aren’t going to be exterminated. And I don’t mean to be caught either, and tamed and fattened and bred like a thundering ox. Ugh! Fancy those brown creepers…”

As he walked off into the moving damp ground fog his voice faded. I wondered if this was all that was left of humanity; a few wondering souls just trying to stay alive for one more day. Is this really all there was left? I put it out of my mind as I continued my trek towards Old London. For some reason I felt my destiny lie there.

THE ENCAMPMENT

When I saw the banner at first I did not believe what I was seeing. There was no reason to. I had pulled myself up the side of a half destroyed brick building – more of a two side wall pile of rubble than a true structure, but climb I did. I needed to survey my new world. I had not known it at the time but I had been very close to my salvation. I rubbed my eyes – they still burned. But burn as they did they did not prevent me from seeing the white sheet some 250 meters away. The white sheet had as its center piece a large red cross – and there were people, people – dozens of them! There were no Martians. I was not alone – there were others and beyond the cross I could see what must have been a government building half in ruin, to the south of the River Thames. Survivors had set up an encampment near the river on the edge of Old London with an International Red Cross team working and gathering up people. I went to my knees to rest for a while and simply look at the scene for a time. No emotion now as I took in the view. I was all and truly spent.

Soon I found myself walking – fast. Then I ran and shouted to them. I must surely have been half mad, in a dream-like world which was completely insane as far as I could tell. I laughed and cried at the same time, uncontrollably; tears streaming down. I had the thought that if I did not get there soon perhaps this would all end; it would all fade to a dream. 200 meters, 100 meters to go. More people and tents – by the gods they had tents!

Red Cross tents north of the Thames River
Red Cross tents north of the Thames River

At 20 meters I suddenly stopped. At first I did not know why. I did not understand. For some reason I suddenly felt I was intruding, as if I did not belong. I only vaguely, very vaguely, remember someone holding my arm and placing me on a bench of some sort. I was inside a tent, and people; people were talking to me, but I could not answer. Was this all just a dream?

“Are you all right, sir? Are you injured?”

“My name is… My… my name is…”

“That’s all right, sir. Let’s get you some tea and a bite to eat. You’re safe now. We can sort that all out later after a bit of rest then.”

I somehow remember a man nearby screaming to no one in particular. “Cities, nations, civilization, progress – it’s all over…” I was cold to his world and to his words. They did not fit my great need for normalcy.

“Yes. Yes that would be right. That’s right. Some tea please. That would be the ticket. A nice hot cup of tea would be just the ticket. Yes. Just right…” I was no longer alone in my brave new world. For some reason I felt warm for the first time in days. There seemed to be no reason to believe that this was real. I don’t recall anything else of that first day. Sleep…per chance to dream… release…

THE LOCAL WORK BEGINS

When I woke up the next day I felt much better. A bit of a wash, some breakfast in a nearby eating tent and I was ready to go. For the first time in weeks I felt like a man. The Red Cross had a command tent on the north side of the Thames, but the main control came from a large tug docked or rather beached near one of the many stairs which led to the river bank from above. I asked if there was anything I could do to help and was immediately rewarded by being placed with a group who were going out to locate survivors. It was going to be a long day, but I needed to do something constructive and this was just what I needed to do. Somewhere still out there, there were lives to save during this very confusing time.

Rescue teams were moving out in all directions combing and calling out at the ruins for anyone who may still be alive trapped in the debris. Mostly we came upon only silence yet every once in a while we miraculously found a survivor. But time was running out for those trapped in the rubble. Digging with whatever we could find and with bare hands we pulled one then another – on and on. More often than not when we found a living person we also found a number of dead. As we searched for more life other teams went about pushing clear paths around the rubble in order to expand our capabilities to maneuver around. Brick by brick they were pushing the war aside so that life could once again find room to breathe.

Digging out
Digging out

As we worked one man beside me began to bemoan the situation. “There won’t be any more blessed concerts for a million years or so; there won’t be any Royal Academy of Arts and no more nice little feeds at restaurants…” I did not have the energy to debate the issue as he continued to ramble on.

On many of the broken and burnt walls one could find notes posted by people hoping to reconnect with lost loved ones, most would never find the ones they were searching for. It had been all too much.

As we worked we made no attempt to identify any of the corpses. What we found we burned as soon as possible. The dead needed to be dealt with speed. This was a must. Many were not whole bodies. At times only a bone or two or perhaps a leg or an arm badly displaced. This was to be sure, an unprecedented situation, and we had no time for ceremony – that could come later. Our work was for the living. We knew however, as we found survivors we were also finding people who could join our ranks and our work would speed up, but only for a while. For the most part we had no more than seven or eight days to find survivors in the rubble – one can only live so long without vital food and water. We needed to press on. At least the river was functioning at least for the most part if one got past the flow of bodies. We had no cleared roads to any great distance save those we could push through locally.

During a rest period I sat next to a man who had recently come from the center of London near Piccadilly Circus. He had hidden for a while in the ruins of Regents Park. Like many he had a tale to tell.

“One night last week some fools got the electric light in order and there was all Regent Street and the Circus ablaze, crowded with painted and ragged drunkards, men and women, dancing and shouting till dawn. A man who was there told me. And as the day came they became aware of a fighting-machine standing near by the Langham Hotel on Portland Place or what remains of it looking down at them. Heaven knows how long it had been there. It must have given some of them a nasty turn. He came down the road towards them, and picking up nearly a hundred too drunk or frightened to run away. Everything was going right until they started the war. Everything was going like clockwork. Everybody was busy and everybody was ‘appy and everybody got a good square meal every day. If you couldn’t get it anywhere else, you could get it in the workhuss, a nice ‘ot bowl of soup – skilly, and bread better ‘n anyone knows ‘ow to make now, reg’lar white bread, gov’ment bread.”

Before long more ships were docking at many rushed and patched together points all along the Thames. Building small docks was becoming common place. A few pieces of charred wood a few large stones to walk upon. The river had become a lifeline once again for the survivors of old London with vessels of all kinds lining its muddy banks. Food supplies were being brought in from outlying areas less devastated than the most populated areas of London. One situation perhaps not too shocking was the overall cooperation of the local people. There was no real security other than the riflemen situated at several points to keep away the packs of dogs; no central police or military, yet that did not seem to matter. People in London just helped each other and the work somehow got done. What we did not have the people simply went without or improvised a local solution.

After a few days at the Red Cross camp I knew that I needed to move on so I said my goodbyes to those good people and began to walk once again towards central London. There I located a few more buildings that had more or less survived somewhat intact. There were also many more people moving about trying to clear roadways and set up temporary shelters. Around noon on the second day of my new wanderings I stood on a large pile of rubble to see a devastated central London. Even with all the damage there were several partial buildings I could identify barely. It was while I stood overlooking Old London that church bells began to ring. A few at first but before long those churches which still functioned rang their bells as hard as they could. As I came down from my perch a man greatly agitated ran past. He stopped briefly to tell me the news.

“It’s over. The Martians, they’re all dead! Some type of disease they say got them all.”

I looked around and was surprised to find a damaged, but still usable notebook so I began to write. “The bells of London are ringing. The war is over. The Martians had been repulsed; they were not invulnerable…” Man would once again command the high ground of Earth, at least for the foreseeable future. I was too numb to comment.

AN OLD FRIEND

Later that day as I began to survey and understand the true extent of the damage locally I came to a cross roads just off of the Thames where several buildings were mostly still standing. They were being used as a type of combined headquarters. People were busy with all manner of work and it was indeed a very mixed group of civilians, military and what remained of government officials. It was here I ran into a young friend of mine, Winston Churchill. He had a minor role in government before the war. As I recall he had entered Parliament in early 1901 as a Conservative. We had met years earlier at Sandhurst but only after he had failed to be admitted twice! He did not like to be reminded of those early failures.

“Winston! Hello Winston. How are you?”

“My god man, is it really you? I see you survived this bloody devastation.”

“Yes, but only by a hair’s breath.”

We shook hands about as strongly as two men ever could.

“Indeed, my man as many of us have. Listen old chap it’s quite amazing to see you at this time. You are just the sort of man I have been looking for.”

“Oh! How’s that?”

As we forcefully shook hands he told me that a new world organization was going to be formed with London as its base. He also asked me if I would be interested in joining in the work. I naturally agreed more because I had nowhere else to go or do than any other reason. I thought I would do the work for a few months or perhaps a year or two before moving on to other things. It didn’t turn out that way.

“We are forming a new group, a world government and all that. With what remains of our world-wide possessions and with the efforts of those American chaps across the pond we feel it can be properly done. We need an historical writer who can put everything down. Will you do it old chap, at least for a while? We could really use someone like yourself.”

As I was well acquainted with the writing arts I felt that this could very well be the best way I could contribute to the overall effort needed for the recovery. On the more practical side of the equation, what the hell else was there to do?

“How can I refuse? My work is gone, my home and papers all destroyed and there does not seem to be much more I can do out in this rubble.”

“Splendid old boy. Come on inside and let me introduce you to the group. There are some superb minds in there and we are calling together as many bright minds as we can from the four corners of the Earth. It’s time to put this old world of ours back together again. Maybe we will do it right this time.”

As we entered the large room I could see several telegraph operators, some in ragged military dress, tapping out the news that the Martian War was over. I did not know it at the time, but among the telegraph operators was none other than Dr. Nikola Tesla. He is an extraordinary man who had been visiting Old London at the start of the war, and one who would come to mean so much to our recovery efforts in the years ahead. He is a truly gifted individual. At the time however, he looked as weather worn as the rest of us. Only later would I remember that this place, this St. Martins-le-Grand, had once entertained Guglielmo Marconi years earlier when he demonstrated to the people of London his wireless devices. It seemed most fitting to be in this place. I wondered at the time if Marconi had made it or had he been lost to the Martians?

Our work was just beginning as we informed the world of our plans for recovery. I later recalled, “Thence the joyful news had flashed all over the world; a thousand cities, chilled by ghastly apprehension, suddenly flashed into frantic illuminations…” At the same time I could not take my mind off the fact that only a few minutes earlier we had walked past a group of uniformed men preparing to execute a man who had been found to have raped and then murdered a woman. It seemed to be a simple act to execute someone yet it was more than a little disturbing to note that my friend Winston had barely taken any notice. Was this to be our “brave new world”? And who were we going to chose to control it? Who along with myself would record these events for future generations? As the shots rang out I sat down and put a few scribbled words to the paper I held, “This had truly been the war of the worlds…”

We now knew through the hard lesson of a bloody interplanetary war that we needed to be much better prepared than we had been in 1901. That was clear enough. What we did not know was how long we had to prepare or any real idea of how that work could ever be accomplished. We did know this much; recovery would not be made by quite soles; it would come from men who would be able to make cold ruthless calculations at times costing many lives. It would take men who could make life and death decisions, and then retire for the rest needed to face the next day, ready to command the next series of crises. With that mind set we survivors called together a group of individuals who would be tasked to lead the world away from the abyss and back to what had passed for civilization.

Using what remained of the beaten and bruised British Empire, the largest organization on Earth at the beginning of the First Martian War, and as such the one organization with enough surviving assets to make a real effort possible we would press on. Matched with the known resources and proven capabilities and industrial might of the rising Americans we began the work. This would be the boldest rebuilding plan ever conceived by man.

It was time to put our planet back together again if we could and we would write the rulebook as we went along. That at least was the plan put forth by a group of men calling themselves the Executive Committee of Twelve. For me it was time to enter a very dark world few would ever know and none could ever leave, and in the end it would consume much of my life and reach down to my very sole. In the deep wells of my mind a thought was stirring. Did we not learn from history that centralizing absolute power in the hands of a small group was a failure that we had yet to learn from history? With my eyes wide open and my head held high I had willingly entered my private little hell with a silly little smile firmly planted on my face.

[END PART 5]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 6: The Committee of Twelve.]

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R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds

27

Welcome to R. Michael Gordon’s
The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds
presented by David Joseph

This original work of fiction will be presented in 76 parts in classic book format on this website; one part every week for the next 76 weeks. Once posted each section will remain available for review at any time.

If you have ever wondered what happened to Earth or the Martians after H. G. Well’s classic science fiction work, The War of the Worlds, now is your opportunity to have that question fully explored and answered in this first time published work.

          We hope you will enjoy this story as told to all of us by a single member of a small group of survivors tasked to rebuild the world from the ashes of this interplanetary war after the defeat of the Martians as they prepare the re-built nations of Earth for the very real possibility that the deadly Martians may someday return to attempt once again to conquer the people of Earth.

          So dear friends of Earth strap on your ray gun and hold on tight to your loved one for its going to be a rough interplanetary ride as we present Part One of The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds, Edited by R-Michael Gordon of the Earth Studies Directorate.

R-Michael Gordon* (eESD) m.p.12,914

(*Author of the non-fiction book: The Space Shuttle Program: How NASA Lost Its Way)

The Aftermath
Of the War of the Worlds

 Edited by
R-Michael Gordon
Earth Studies Directorate

Editor’s Note

In December e.y. 2028, at the end of the Terrain Wars (12,901), a highly classified electronic document was discovered along with several supporting documents both electronic and plant based by a team of Earth explorers – These and other documents had been locked away in a deep vault which had been protected by members of a long defunct organization led by men known as the Executive Committee of Twelve – This historic account, recorded by a senior member of that group, details the history and many of the inside secrets of the organization first formed in the ashes of their first modern war with Mars Prime (Terra Project).

Although many of the events recorded in this document, dated from e.y. 1901 to 1939, are generally known and are thus familiar to those interested in Earth history, it is the insider view of these events, many of which have never been disclosed, that mark this electronic document as extraordinary – This single individual seems to have been responsible for recording much of the inside secret workings of the primary command and control group from its inception and thus the history of the Committee and as such held a unique position and perspective into their operations, many of which go well beyond legal documents or written laws known to have been generally incorporated by nations on Earth at the time of their creation.

This is also a record of the recorder’s personal thoughts and how this individual eventually parted with the organization and at what cost to him – Even though this first international organization on Earth no longer exists there is much we can all learn from one who personally witnessed much of this previously little known organization’s historic efforts to bring their world together anyway they could no matter what the cost in order to do battle with their enemies on Earth as well as on Mars Prime.

R-Michael Gordon
Editor – Earth Studies Directorate (eESD)
m.p.12,914

[PART 1]
The Aftermath
Of the War of the Worlds

First Thoughts of the Day

Near Grover’s Mill, New Jersey, United States
Early Morning, 30 October 1938

I have stopped running for I have lost my strength and must rest. I know once again I am very much alone at the moment in a world nearly destroyed and I am getting too old to play cat-and-mouse with my enemies. Why I am still alive when so many others are dead I cannot say. I do not know, which is the better path – life or death on such an uncertain world as I now find myself.

The last deadly Martian machine has fallen silent, of this I am certain, yet I find myself still in a hazy period of doubt and fear. It will not be long now, for I was one of the few who know the whole story, and as such I am a danger to those now in power. As had most of you, I fought with a struggling humanity against the invaders. I was there for all of it, beginning when I wore the strange clothes of a much younger individual; from the first when humanity learned of the Martians until their final attack only days now past. Since the early days just after the end of the first war which had held all of our Earth in its deadly grip my professional career has been spent almost exclusively in service to the group working on the “Martian Problem” mostly at headquarters at the executive staff level and as such I had complete access to all areas of the work. The work held no secrets from me. This was also where I met my future wife and where our child was born. Who am I? My name is not important, but as a man of letters I may perhaps be allowed to flatter myself and state that if you heard my name it would be familiar to many who have followed the Martian War reports.

I had wanted to tell the rest of humanity the true history of these events but mine was the only voice in that confining wilderness as the others did not agree. I knew then I had to escape as dissent was not to be allowed on this critical issue. The secrets we hold had become the controlling force on Earth not the men who held them. The truth no longer matters and the only currency of value now is power. Perhaps it has always been as such. By way of this recording I now hope to report to you the people of Earth all I can recall from memory as well as from a few unauthorized notes I made from time-to-time along the way. I also hold a few official documents to jog my memory of certain events. It was a journey, which brought the world back from its greatest destruction in human history and it became our greatest victory. For the people of Earth the full journey has taken thousands of years. For me it has become an odyssey of some 37 short years and yet its secrets have made me older than my time spent on Earth.

Death is naturally the penalty for revealing this information, but death no longer holds any power over one such as I. There is no longer any fear for I am past such earthy concerns. Like many others the journey has brought to me a realization of who I really am and I have come to accept the truth of my guilt. I, as had the others, have committed ruthless acts in this dangerous world to protect the rest of humanity from the perils of the invader and have thus become less than human. We had at times become even as ruthless as our enemies on Mars. We have seen ourselves and had not liked what we have seen. The abyss is far too close.

It is certain some have come to know the general story, which is just now being taught in patched together institutes of learning still within the rubble, but as you shall soon learn the telling is not complete by such a long score. I shall tell you details of the inside story most of which is not yet available to the general public, but my time is short and the telling must be completed before I leave this world. There is much to say and I need to have this story recorded so that it will not be forgotten or forever hidden from the people of Earth. For you see, the people have every right to know the true story, not just to learn the real history of these and other world events but because it is your story. All must learn from these events and thus be better able to plan for a future far from certain. That is not to say that all secrets will be revealed, as there are still such secrets, which must remain hidden if for no other reason than to protect mankind from themselves. There are things in our universe of which mankind as a whole are not yet prepared to understand nor accept. I may only say that to the stars humans are but children wondering about in the darkness looking for a shining pebble of truth. Humans have so much to learn if only they have the time to learn and understand. That is the task I leave for all of you.

            Nevertheless, I shall tell you about the aftermath of what became known as the First Martian War so far hidden behind official secrets and well-worn lies, and I shall tell you how close “we humans” really came to utter extermination on planet Earth during the Second Martian War, which has just recently come to its bloody conclusion. At least I believe this to be true – certainty holds such a fleeting embrace. You see the Martians were never content with simply winning a global war and taking the planet. They were fully intent on destroying all of humanity, and make no mistake they still are! Yet they would prove that advanced evolution in a species did not ensure a race of morally superior beings. Humans have nothing to learn from the Martians in morality. What they may have learned from humans may only be guessed at. Certainly they learned that mankind could be as brutal as their own – perhaps even more so. We have learned these lessons ourselves. It is perhaps the one great human truth.

We all remember when the Martians returned in force to once again spread death upon our fragile planet – at least many think they do, but that bloody conflict was only the latest struggle of a much more detailed story. The background of that second conflict and what we learned between Martian wars sent chills down the spines of those such as myself who had been tasked by ourselves, reformed governments and secret organizations to protect this world from enemies known as well as those never suspected and still hidden even from those few in positions of true power.

When word finally arrived that the Martian machines were falling silent around the world during the First Martian War, even as they continued to sweep all before them as one would push aside a trail of ants, our first tasks were clear: Order needed to be restored as after all wars, and lives would need to be put back together as best they could even though the losses had been staggering. Fully one half of all humanity had fallen before the Martians before they themselves succumbed to the humblest creatures on Earth. Whole cities, once mighty upon the land, had been completely destroyed, as were much of their populations. Many cities and smaller communities may not be rebuilt for generations; some will never be rebuilt, as they no longer reflect even rubble so completely devastated were they by the new and even more powerful Martian war machines. Yet even as much of Earth lay in ruins we went to work. There was no other choice.

As the rubble from the first Martian War was cleared from the “luckier” areas and the bodies were burned or buried, no one had time to think of the enemy who had been so thorough in its attempt at world conquest. Most who had survived the holocaust knew that our first work needed to focus on the living and prepare to rebuild our badly broken world. Nevertheless, before long, when nights were once again peaceful and calm thoughts turned to Mars, the certain reality came to us that our enemies on that ancient dying world had only been defeated on Earth and even then not by the hand of men – the Martians still held sway over their own dying world and they still looked with envious eyes towards this badly wounded, but still beautiful planet. Earth still held the water and other resources badly needed by the brutal Martians and they would continue to do whatever it took to take what they needed at any price, including the ‘nourishment’ that walked upright upon this world. It was soon realized that the Martians must attack the Earth again – they had no other choice if they were to continue as a species. We had to be ready, for if we were not, the next time they attacked in force, humanity might not be as ‘lucky’ as they had been the first time. Earth needed to build for peace as we prepared for the ultimate interplanetary war. Those two goals became the primary mandate of The Executive Committee of Twelve; the group of which I was to become a part.

We know now after long years of dedicated historical and archeological research the Martians had looked with murderous eyes for many millennia towards this blue planet. Their decision to attack was preceded by much effort and planning. These are beings that plan well into the future as a single unit, seemingly a single mindset. The workings of the humble ant would be a close approximation of their type of mental and civil organization yet at a much higher intellectual level. They cared not for the one, but for the whole. Water was of course the key to their many efforts as the dissected red dust on Mars continued to obscure and obliterate their once proud domain. Water that pressed every continent and every square yard of this planet be it in the air or seas or on the land must have seemed a torment to the inhabitants of Mars who needed to husband every drop they could out of the poles, the frozen ground and even their Spartan atmosphere in order to survive just a while longer. This torment made them strong. It made them determined. It also made them insane, for they never even considered asking the people of Earth for the help they desperately needed. Knowing humanity as I feel I do, it is clear that help would have come and gladly.

            Now as I walk among the exhibits and other objects housed in this small underground Committee storehouse from the First and Second Martian Wars, memories flood my mind in a torrent of short, flashing, painful events, which will never really end, save for death. Like many others, perhaps yourself, I can never really escape their constant pressing on my mind. I am taken back without recourse to the sights and smells of the first dead Martians I ever saw burned of flesh, pressed hard to the cold steel of their fighting machines, tentacles limp, remembering their dead black eyes, which never showed emotion or compassion at any time even when they were alive. I recall the end days of the First Martian War when mankind was all but defeated, when nothing “we” simple and backward humans could do would end the ceaseless bloody attacks upon this devastated planet; when humanity was about to breath its last breath of hard fought freedom. Yet, the end of this world never came as the Martians began to fall – a few at first – but more rapidly as the days rolled on until the tiniest viruses on Earth took their final deadly toll on the invaders one and all. As I now glance at the cases of gas masks and other debris of war I remember the dead Martians being dragged out of their fighting machines as most were simply burned on the body piles. I also remember the packs of starving dogs and black birds ripping at the diseased flesh for a meal before their terror ended as well. Yet some, as the one before me in the elongated case much like a coffin, are still displayed; one or two of these repulsive creatures in several viewing areas around our devastated world to remind us all of those creatures who would have been our masters, but for the humblest creatures placed upon this Earth.

            Humbly, I recall, it was Herbert Wells who many believe expressed it best for mere humans when writing of the First Martian War fought in 1901 as it pertained to the southern British sector of that world conflict, and of the end, which came to those first Martians near old London town. The author called it “The War of the Worlds” – a fitting title I would think for such massive devastation and terror. This tale, like many others to come out of that bloody conflict between the worlds, tells of this writer’s close personal contacts and mental battles against the Martians as he viewed such a small yet important part of a war, which had quickly, became worldwide. Of course the author could not have known that at the time he experienced the events he wrote of in his small confining area of Earth, devastated by the seemingly mindless brutality of the Martians, that this truly was a ‘War of the Worlds’. Little did this writer know that his words could not be an epitaph for the Martians, but merely a prologue to an even greater conflagration, one which would not only bring its singular death and destruction back to one world, but surely to two worlds; one as ancient as time itself, and another who’s intellectual youth had yet to reach for the stars and yet reach they must if they are to survive the struggle forced upon them from beyond this simple world of blue skies and cool water bathed shores.

This story of mankind’s titanic struggle on this and perhaps other worlds will continue and may yet have a very different and apocalyptic conclusion for all of mankind if we do not learn the lessons of the aftermath of this Second Martian War. We must learn from this interplanetary struggle and never forget that which has been so devastating and that which has cost us so much. I beg you to listen closely and remember “The Aftermath” of “The War of the Worlds”…

A member of the Committee

A Word from H. G.

No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man’s and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinized and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man with a microscope might scrutinize the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water. With infinite complacency men went to and fro over this globe about their little affairs, serene in their assurance of their empire over matter. It is possible that the infusoria under the microscope do the same. No one gave a thought to the older worlds of space as sources of human danger, or thought of them only to dismiss the idea of life upon them as impossible or improbable. It is curious to recall some of the mental habits of those departed days. At most terrestrial men fancied there might be other men upon Mars, perhaps inferior to themselves and ready to welcome a missionary enterprise. Yet across the gulf of space, minds that are to our minds as ours are to those of the beasts that perish, intellects vast and cool and unsympathetic, regarded this Earth with envious eyes, and slowly and surely drew their plans against us.

                                                                                       Herbert G. Wells, 1901
Writing from the rubble of the First Martian War

       The Martians: Committee Field Notebook Number One
1901-1910

THE FIRST MARTIAN WAR AND ITS AFTERMATH

Chapter One – 1901
The New World – Year One

Chapter Two – 1902-1905
The Earth Rebuilds from the Ashes of Planetary War

Chapter Three – 1906-1910
The Battle with the Martians Continues

Chapter 1

1901
The New World – Year One

“And from what remained of the past the gods recreated the heavens upon the Earth.”
Ancient Babylonian Tablet

The first day of a whole new world – What we failed to properly see – “The War of the Worlds” – What I saw in old London – The Executive Committee of Twelve – The ‘last’ Martian attack of the war – Continuing to reorganize the world – Testimony before the Executive Committee of Twelve – Early Martian contacts discovered – The rebuilding of Earth’s civilization begins again – Martial Law – The Earth’s population goes underground.

The First Day of a Whole New World

“Every organized government in the world was shattered
and broken as a heap of china beaten with a stick.”

H. G. Wells

This had truly been “The War of the Worlds”. What remained of a devastated humanity scattered widely about our ruined planet by the winds of interplanetary war would now have to face “The Aftermath” of that bloody conflict. Those of us who survived were now awakening to the terrifying first day of a whole new world remembered by damaged minds to be in the late stages of the year 1901. It had come as a thunderbolt – aliens had landed on Earth! As with most others it would be years before my nightmares of war would fade, but they have never completely left my mind.

Clearly I remember the day and the very hour when reports heralding the end of the Martian attacks were telegraphed around the world as soon as the machines and wires could be repaired. That manmade network of copper wire encased in rubber had somehow not been completely destroyed. Very few locations with operational and experimental wireless receivers were able to learn the news immediately. Most areas would be late in receiving the news; at times as much as two months after the last deadly Martian Heat-Rays had fallen silent. To many outer lying areas, reports had to be sent by ship or dirigible or even dispatch riders. In scattered areas around the world when word first arrived signaling the end of hostilities, crude single page flyers were published and posted on the rubble. Church bells often rang out when news reached the smoldering remains of cities and towns, many of which barely had any buildings still standing that the greatest war ever visited upon humanity was finally over.

This war had lasted less than eight weeks, yet it had been the most devastating social and economic upheaval the Earth had ever experienced and now we were all in the same bloody mess. Simply stated the world human beings had once known was dead, but not yet buried. The Martians had committed mass murder on a scale never before seen nor imagined by anyone on Earth. During the first days of the war the Martians had taken prisoners, but not as anyone would imagine such captives to be. They were simply ‘harvested’ as substance for the blood thirsty Martians. When that need was satisfied pure slaughter on a grade scale became the norm. They would simply ‘thin the herd!’ Inadequate are yet the words needed to describe the horror visited upon this planet. Only later would we come to understand that at no time and in no place did men stop the relentless defense of our planet. Even when all hope had gone humans continued to do battle to the death. No quarter was given and none was accepted as thousands of corpses became the only barricades against the Martian hordes. We would come to learn that putrefaction could be a welcome allied.

The Martian/human hybrids that had been brought to Earth by the Martians as part of their invasion force had also ended hostilities, although many of them had refused to fight at the onset for their Martian A masters (the ruling species on Mars) once they had arrived on Earth. But it must be said that the small percentage, which did fight, caused a good deal of damage. The deadly bacteria had not affected most of them. Yet, in the end, some of them would turn out to be more ‘human’ than much of mankind as they too endured the aftermath of the First Martian War. Others were to cause great troubles for years to come. They were all now part of our strange new world.

The Martian Bs or Grays, as they have come to be known (thought to be a less advanced species of Martian), were all either killed by Earth’s military forces during the early part of the fighting or taken as food by the superior Martian As. As with their masters none of them survived on Earth for very long.

The First Martian War had certainly brought great devastation to much of Earth. Millions were dead, many nations were completely destroyed, and many crops were devastated, with our thin lines of communication cut all over the planet. We soon realized that even though the war may have been over the battle now enjoined by what remained of humanity at every level would be one of simple survival. Scientists would later estimate that since the birth of life on Earth some 97% of all species who called Earth home had become extinct. The Martians had done their very best to add humanity to the ever growing list. Our destroyed infrastructures meant we were all equal now. To be sure, starvation and disease would soon follow, adding to our horror as mankind throughout much of the world dragged itself up from the stench of death and war in an attempt to simply continue from day to day. Many did not survive even though the threat of Martian attacks had ended, at least for the time being. Perhaps for the first time in man’s history we were as one. I could not help recalling the words of Dr. John Donne those many years ago. “Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind. And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.”

Typical city destruction due to Martian attacks

Many of the great cities of the world had been completely devastated as if from the strongest storm mankind could ever hope to endure. London, the most populated city on Earth at 6.5 million, where I found myself at the end of hostilities, was a mere shell of itself, yet tattered and torn Union Jacks could soon be seen defiantly flying upon the highest rubble to be found in many burned out areas. Berlin, which held 2.7 million, before the war and defended with what historians would later call “fanatical courage”, was not much more than a flat desert plain of blackened and burned rubble. Paris, the great “City of Lights,” once home to 3.3 million was unrecognizable, save the pile of burnt, melted and twisted steel that had been Mr. Effie’s great tower built for the Paris Exhibition of 1889, which at 984 feet had been the tallest man-made structure on Earth. The Martians could not miss seeing that. Moscow, where a final desperate push by the Martians had been stopped cold by the largest marshaling of artillery the world had ever seen, was a mere shadow of its former self. Tokyo, Bangkok and Manila along with many other cities of the old and new worlds no longer existed! Melted stone walls which had flowed like rivers of lava were the ever present hallmarks of their powerful Heat-Rays. There were no defenses against such weapons.

In the American east, Philadelphia, New York, the largest of the American cities, which before the war held some 4.2 million residents, Boston and much of Washington, were not much more than a wasteland of blackened and melted debris with thousands of fires still burning. Lord Bryce had recorded in his 1888 work American Commonwealth about some of the failures of American cities. Here he found “extremes of wealth and poverty” as well as “crowded marble palaces of the rich” whose doorways had been “haunted by beggars.” Both the palaces and the beggars had departed the scene.

A single tattered flag showing the Stars and Stripes could be seen flying from a tall twisted pipe where it is said the American Congress had once met. There was nothing to indicate that this was so. None of the familiar buildings or monuments in any large city along the East Coast of America stood on the day the Martian machines fell silent. Certainly there was recognizable debris, but not much more than that. In lower lying areas pools of solidified steal and stone had cooled to form strangely beautiful metallic-rock lakes as if time had somehow stopped all meaning in their reflective gaze. Even ‘Lady Liberty’, better known as the Statue of Liberty, given to the American people by the people of France, was now a twisted and melted relic unrecognizable all accept the arm that had held the torch. Chicago, St. Louis, Denver and many other great cities in the ‘New World’ were not much more than burning ghost towns. The corpses, representing only a small percentage of those lost, were too numerous to count.

West Coast American city destroyed

On the American West Coast, Vancouver, Seattle, Los Angeles and San Diego were all in ruins for they had taken the brunt of the attacks off of the Pacific as the Martians swept in from the coast seemingly aiming towards the central plains of the United States and Canada. Only the falling of the Martians from the deadly bacteria stopped them from destroying the vital central valley of California. It was only with luck that they never made it in full strength to the vast farmlands of the central United States, Canada, nor the vast steppes of Russia, which would, when combined, became literally the breadbaskets for the rest of the world, but only after we could find enough transportation to move these life giving grains to the millions of people who needed them desperately. Even with that the destruction had been vast.

            The major population centers of the southern hemisphere fared not much better than the north. The cities of Cape Town, Southern Africa, Buenos Aires, Argentina, Auckland, New Zealand, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, were completely destroyed; showing only piles of rubble with burned human remains sired into the very stones with only shadows showing at times and blackened corpses now rotting everywhere. In many areas the never to be identified remains were piled in heaps entangled as if one mass. One could not imagine that humans could actually melt! In both the northern and southern hemispheres many large areas of many ‘modern’ cities were so completely destroyed they would have to be abandoned altogether.

            We were shocked to later learn that for some reason, which has never been explained, the Martians gave particular attention to Jakarta, Indonesia. Perhaps it had been a test area of how much devastation they could truly inflict upon a chosen area. Their brutal attacks again and again on that once proud community left it as an unrecognizable zone of burnt, melted, and baron ground. There was no vestige remaining anywhere that human presence had ever known this place. No living thing stood upon this desolated moonscape or for that matter below the ground on that once heavily populated site. Jakarta was not just attacked and destroyed; the bloodthirsty Martians incinerated and melted it into non-existence. No destruction on Earth in recorded history by man or nature had ever been as complete. Jakarta could never be rebuilt as it has completely vanished from the surface of Earth and is now only to become a fast fading memory, as later investigations showed not a single artifact of human presence was ever to be discovered. One of only a handful of survivor’s remembered, “Never before in the history of warfare had destruction been so indiscriminate and so universal.” We had all come to learn the devastating global nature of modern interplanetary warfare as practiced by the Martians.

            Records would indicate that before the war Earth’s human population had stood at a little over 1.6 billion. After the war Earth held an estimated 800 million people upon its fragile surface. This had been more than genocide. This was mass murder on a scale almost too great to comprehend. A good example of such loss may be seen in the United States which held some 76 million soles at the start of the war – estimated at around 41 million struggling survivors by war’s end. The Martians had killed half of the people living on planet Earth in only a few weeks. London’s population had been 6.5 million representing the most populated city on Earth, New York’s stood at 4.2 million, Paris held some 2.7 million, with Berlin at 1.9 million. Tokyo had as many as 1.5 million residents, the same with Wuhan, China. After the Martians ended their attacks London’s population fell to 1.4 million, New York 1.1 million, Paris was estimated at 900,000, Berlin could only count 400,000 souls, Tokyo held 300,000 survivors and Wuhan had less than 100,00 people in and around the general area of that completely destroyed city. The remaining populations were to be held as little more than human cattle to feed the millions of Martians yet waiting to ‘immigrate’ across the ethereal border to steal all they could from Earth.

            Many national leaders had also fallen during the war. Britain lost its Prime Minister the Marquis of Salisbury, France had lost Emile Loubet, Germany lost William II and Japan lost Emperor Mutsuhito along with countless others. This list is far too long to recount. The war had also destroyed a great amount of railroad track and rolling stock that seemed to be a special target of the Martians as these manmade resources had represented at the time the cutting edge of ‘modern’ technology and man’s advancement on Earth. Rail systems around the world had been greatly responsible for linking mankind and developing advanced economies. Cutting our lines of communication and modern infrastructure appeared to have been two of their strategic goals. Thus the modern engines of the industrial age had been cut down to such low levels not seen for decades. Nevertheless, we still had a workable amount of rail lines and engines intact so their attempts to destroy that portion of our planet’s manmade infrastructure had been only partially successful.

Destroyed Railway station

When we were able to assess the damage there were many examples all around the world of infrastructure destroyed. Of the 193,000 miles of track in the United States, which at the time represented half the world’s active railway lines, the greatest on Earth, at least 130,000 had been destroyed. In Russia all but 10,000 miles of her 33,000 miles of track were laid to waste and in Britain some 14,000 of her 19,000 miles of railroad infrastructure had been lost. However, no modern industrialized nation on Earth had suffered a complete loss of track or navigable roads, and in many areas at least some of the telegraphs wires remained or were repairable in short order. In short, the Martians had failed to completely isolate large pockets of humanity still holding on to life by a thin measure, so we continued to stand as one species upon the Earth, needing each other, and, united as never before in human history if only by our fear and hatred of all things Martian. It would prove to be a strong yet fleeting bond.

            With so much track destroyed many areas would need to rely upon an older system of transportation which had recently gone out of general use, at least for the movement of large quantities of goods. It was a system well known to the Martians – canals! For the most part nearly all of the world’s canals in Europe, the United States, China and many other areas were still very much as they had been before the war. It was later theorized the canal building Martians had left these waterways intact for their own use after they had completed their bloody work of conquest. There were even a few reports, never verified, that the Martians had begun transporting equipment, and most disturbing, captured humans for ‘consumption,’ on some of the smaller canals just before the end of the war. I for one would not have been surprised to have witnessed these activities even as no ‘survivor reports’ were ever found. What a strange sight it would have been. Of the world’s pre-war forestlands, estimated at the end of the past century to have been around 15 billion acres, it was thought that some seven billion acres had been lost to a series of massive fires set by the Martian war machines. Many of these fires would burn for weeks, some for months. At first we did not understand why they would attack the forests. It seemed a waste of effort and war making resources considering their overall objectives. Only later would we come to understand this destruction was also part of an elaborate plan to capture a planet, which most suited their needs. They needed a cooler world to live on and destroying the forests was part of that long-term plan. Along with the damage came the destruction of 30% of the world’s farmlands. The Red Weed they had spread over much of our farmlands as they moved in battle formation had by now died off, but in its wake millions of acres were now left as sterile deserts. The Red Weed had killed all vegetation in these areas before it too fell to Earth’s bacteria. The residue it left could still cause great harm. It would take many years and great effort to recover many of these fields of grain.

AN ANOMALY

Then there was the anomaly in Egypt. Strangely it seemed at first, as we did not fully understand the significance at the time, one city was never attacked during the First Martian War. Other towns and small villages in the nearby area also suffered little damage especially as compared to the rest of the world’s major population centers. Witnesses had reported that the city had not only been over flown several times by Martian machines in full formation, but Martian ground machines had “walked through” and fired not a single burst from their Heat-Rays – Cairo! What had they seen that caused them to spare this ancient city of heat and sand?

Only Cairo for the most part would stand after, as it had before the war, and we had to find out why. It would take a team of Egyptologists, archeologists and historians many years to provide the terrifying answer that we honestly did not want to learn. Cairo, which still holds within its outskirts the hot desert grasp of the great pyramids, was originally named El-Kahira. El-Kahira comes from the Arabic El-Kahir – Mars! In fact, the recorded history of man’s observations of Mars dates back to the ancient Egyptians. Since the earliest days primitive man had been fascinated by and tracked the stars and planets – the home of the gods. Later, after viewing Egyptian records, Babylonian astronomers would record detailed observations of Mars’ movements across the darkened night skies.

We came to understand the Martians had not attacked Cairo because that ancient city of burning sands and deep mystery had once played host to Martians in a time seemingly long forgotten by humans. Clearly the Martians had remembered the city because Cairo it seemed had once been a Martian city (Ref: Martian Electric Document 02Y16)!*

* Martian Electric Documents were

* Martian Electric Documents were filed first by the number of the machine or device the record had been located, such as machine number 02. The next letter designated the location on Earth the machine had been discovered. Y for example was located in Brazil. The final two or three numbers were simply the order in which the so-called electric files were placed into the Martian records within the electric document. These Martian electric files proved to be a gold mine of information about all things Martian. For whatever reason the Martians had brought with their invasion forces a detailed electric history of their time on Mars as well as their culture and development. They also held many records of their long history of contact with Earth.

Now we were asking: Had these ancient humans worshipped them? And even if they did how could they ever hope to understand the complicated motivation of a species from another world, another civilization, thousands of years in advance of their own? How were they to communicate beyond the simplest ways? One researcher perhaps had the answer: the universal language of mathematics! With much effort we would labor to discover many of the secrets deeply held in those hot desert sands. One of my concerns was whether or not these Martians had interfered with the development of ancient humans before written history. And if they did, what damage had they been able to accomplish?

From my later notes: “Were they responsible for the pyramids and what, if anything was there still inside them waiting for the Martians or us to retrieve? When things calm down we must look into this.”

In other areas, where humanity still stood, albeit weakly, the stench of death hung deeply upon the raped lands for months. Indeed, it would be the smell of death which would most lingers in the minds of the survivors. In later years when one heard a scream someone more often than not had picked up a smell that was terrifyingly familiar. For others it was simply far too much to bear as many took their own lives. For those it had all been too much to understand and accept. That terror of the unknown – that darkness of the night – is indeed instinctive to man and part of humanity’s primal makeup. Panic would strike unreasonably no matter where on Earth the Martians first landed. All soon came to understand that no matter where they lived sooner or later their time would come and they would be forced to face the deadly Martian machines. After the fight, people, dazed and hungry, wondered around once populated areas before being gathered up as sheep to crudely built tent as well as wooden and broken stone shelters. Hell had surely made a stand upon the face of the Earth yet this was no biblical fiction. Dead bodies ravaged by scavengers were everywhere. There was much as a result of panic. There were too many stories of men and women simply running until they sank down in despair not knowing where to run or why. Surely no measure of Hell imagined in the minds of mortal man could have been as complete.

Death by heat ray

In many areas across the world populations, facing starvation due to the complete breakdown of transportation or the lack of local grains began eating dogs and cats or even rats to stay alive. Murder of the weak or sick for food was not uncommon in some outlying areas. There were even reports out of central Asia of adults eating their children! In the northern areas of Manchuria and Korea tree bark became a stable for months. Manure also became a source of nutrition in central Europe. In some areas the only local food was grass or weeds. Old leather was being boiled for soup and eaten in small pieces. Any bird within grasp would soon become a quick meal.

However, even amongst such utter despair and complete destruction small businesses soon sprang up in some areas as a semblance of order came, but to be sure it was a rough order even as flags and banners began to be seen in some populated areas. Many of us still remember the homespun manufacturing of small trade goods such as cloth, candles, shoes and other small items that would soon make their way to street venders. “The Collectors”; I remember them, no more than looters really, began to barter for all manner of goods and “services.” I remember that brick collectors especially seemed to be everywhere in many cities attempting to gain the materials for the construction they hoped would soon be underway. These newly cleared streets gave the impression of almost working towns and cities, but they were mere skeletons of themselves, only the transient shadows and fleeting ghosts of once great human endeavors. All around one could find any number of crude structures thrown together to afford some measure of cover from the elements along with military units putting up tent cities where ground had been cleared. Very soon when some kind of local control could be established rationing of any and all foods would be the rule lasting for years to come. Rivers and other waterways soon become the new roads of a destroyed world as survivors struggled to rebuild their lives and livelihoods.

Around the world many small surviving communities became nearly fully self-sufficient, reminiscent of times gone by. Just about everything from furniture, shoes, farm equipment, coal and just about every food source became a local commodity. With banking systems nonexistent, many of these communities printed local script to be exchanged for local goods and services. Later, when government returned to these areas more often than not the script could be exchanged for Committee notes (issued for only 12 months) and later turned in for national currencies.

In many areas where surviving members of the International Red Cross were able to organize themselves, at least locally, members were setting up tents taken from their few surviving emergency warehouses. Supplies were being transported by whatever conveyance could be found. At times horse drawn carts filled the cleared streets where there were cleared streets. Red Cross members were soon handing out food, water, clothes and small tents to as many people as they could, knowing their supplies could not last long. These would need to be guarded as would the few available horses as many where slaughtered for such meat as could be gained. They could never have anticipated this great a disaster on such a global scale, and neither could anyone else. One volunteer would later tell me, “We will do whatever we can for as long as possible, but without any re-supply there is only so much anyone can do.” There was no place from which re-supply could be obtained. There were pressing needs for just about everything one could imagine. Military guards were at times necessary to keep as much local order as possible. Medical supplies were also given out by surviving doctors and nurses. On more than one occasion it was reported that the only medical help available came from medical students doing the best they could with what they had. These students and Red Cross members were the first true heroes of those long, dark desperate early days. Traumatic injuries, which could in better times be cared for, took many lives. In many cases a broken arm or leg was tantamount to a death penalty. Countless people died for no other reason than they had simply given up. It had all been far too much for many.

For the most part disorder ruled those desperate days as an unknown fear ruled the long dark nights. Or perhaps it was not really unknown as all that needed to be said was “Martian”! One man would state as he looked upon his devastated world, “Why are these things permitted? …I was walking through the roads to clear my brain for the afternoon, and then fire, earthquake, death! As if it was Sodom and Gomorrah. What sins have we done? All our work undone, all the work – What are these Martians?”

Indeed, many would ask: What are these Martians? There would be no ready answer; no easy explanation to give to the survivors. After all, humanity had not been given the opportunity to debate the issue and discuss the sociological pros and cons of contact with off-world beings before ‘contact’ was made. That issue had been decided for us without so much as an introduction or even a declaration of war. The Martians had simply landed upon our planet and forced those who survived on Earth to learn what extra-terrestrial really meant as they taught mankind a bloody lesson in humility. We had been shown that we mighty men of Earth, we masters of all we survey, were in fact only temporary inhabitants of a tiny planet, in orbit about an average star, circling around an average spiral galaxy, in an outer spiral arm of that “island universe”, of which we would later learn our Milky Way is but one of billions of galaxies in all of space and time. We had no special place in the universe, and that was a shock to many even though it should not have been to a more thoughtful individual. As for the Martians – they had simply come uninvited to our lands to kill and take what they could from the beings that had stood weakly in their path. It was kill or be killed all over the Earth as the Martians commanded the high end of that discourse at least for a few weeks in the fall of 1901. The war I remembered seemed much longer than that. The mind plays its little tricks. Years later one well-known historian would look back upon these desperate times and write of the destroyed world and the calamity which had come as a flash of lightening to our species.

The stages of swift and universal collapse of the financial and scientific civilization with which the twentieth century opened followed each other very swiftly, so swiftly that upon the foreshortened page of history they seem altogether to overlap. To begin with, one sees the world nearly at a maximum of wealth and prosperity. To its inhabitants indeed it seemed also at a maximum of security. When now in retrospect the thoughtful observer surveys the intellectual history of this time, when one reads its surviving fragments of literature, its scraps of political oratory, the few small voices that chance has selected out of a thousand million utterances to speak to later days, the most striking thing of all this web of wisdom and error is surely that hallucination of security. To men living in our present world state, orderly, scientific and secured, nothing seems so precarious, so giddily dangerous, as the fabric of the social order with which the men of the opening of the twentieth century were contest. The precedents of history were all of one tale of the collapse of civilization, the dangers of the time were manifest. One is incredulous now to believe they could not see the dangers. Wherever there were great populations, great masses of people found themselves without work, without money and unable to get food. Famine was in every working-class quarter in the world within three weeks of the beginning of the war. Within a month there was not a city anywhere in which the ordinary law and social procedure had not been replaced by some form of emergency control, in which firearms and military executions were not being used to keep order and prevent violence. And still in the poorer quarters, and in the populous districts, and even here and there already among those who had been wealthy, famine spread.

We now realize man’s dominance of Earth is at best tenuous, and humanities’ lightly held grip holds no guarantee it will continue. In order for mankind to remain superior on this planet, guided by our local star and held in the ethereal gulf of solar space, we had learned that the people of Earth needed to be ready to fight for the right to hold on to this tiny planetary beachhead we humans call home. If necessary we would need to fight individually and then as a united planet simply to stay alive.

BLISS BEFORE THE WAR

As humanity pressed on with numbed minds we occasionally moved from this grim new reality to things of old including literature from a much earlier time, seemingly a lifetime ago, yet amazingly only weeks past. I for one had sat at my favorite coffee shop reading only weeks earlier, blissful in my ignorance of off world events. Or was I making notes for a new book or an article – it is hard to remember such simple delights of times past. The best seller before the war had been Mary Johnston’s To Have and to Hold. Indeed, there was much to read and enjoy in “the old days”. However, in the darkened rubble it no longer seemed appropriate to read or even discuss Garrett P. Serviss’s delightful fiction Edison’s Conquest of Mars (a great favorite of Dr. Robert Goddard of future rocket fame), written in 1898 or George Griffith’s A Honeymoon in Space published in 1900 in which he describes what he called the many magnificent works of Martian labor. Theodore Fluornoy’s From India to the Planet Mars also from 1900 in which a young Indian woman travels to Mars and gives a grand description of a wonderful civilization with breathtaking landscapes on Mars soon found no readers for his well crafted work of fiction. I remember reading such fiction or was it only an ancient fable that Eden had ‘actually’ been near the North Pole of Mars. Another tall tale situated that fictional paradise rather near the Martian equator. But where then may men discover our Eve? And why did these ancestors place Eden on Mars? Facts and desperate events on Earth would soon overtake such fiction as these.

            I must admit my thoughts did not normally turn to subjects beyond our world as with anyone there was much work to complete. But when I was able to find a quiet place to contemplate what was thought to be the universe I remember thinking I would have been truly shocked if mankind was able to discover that our planet was the only one which held a species capable of asking such questions. How lonely it would be to have no others to relate to.

Perhaps the last great work of fiction to cross our collective minds before the war was H. G. Wells’ The First Men in the Moon. My copy is well worn as it became an early escape from the realities of my new world. Yet, it would be years before most would be ready to take a real hard look at our only natural satellite. Reality I am afraid was just too horrific to pause for light reading about Martians and moon men so these fine works were soon forgotten. Perhaps it was for the best now that the war was over. We had other things on our minds. There was much to do and so little time to do it.

            Before the Martians came many would take an evening off to see the latest play by George Bernard Shaw You Never Can Tell or sing along to A Bird in a Gilded Cage. Eric Wise (better known as Harry Houdini) was on tour of Europe and the United States amazing audiences with his marvelous escapes, yet even with his singular skills he, along with millions of others, was unable to escape the Martians. By 1900 ragtime music had become all the rage. There were Gibson girls and brightly lit music halls to help pass a pleasant evening’s delight. A year earlier, Scott Joplin had introduced the world to a new sound with his Maple Leaf Rag. We were all dancing the Camel Walk, the Cake Walk and the Monkey Glide. We were remembering the 1900 Olympics held in Paris that year where 1,330 athletes from 22 nations had attended. France would win the most medals at 102 including 29 gold. It would be sometime before we would once again be able to play Olympic Games such as golf, cricket, croquet and tug-of-war, or even purchase a new Brownie camera costing one American dollar before the war, the ‘Kodak’. It had been to Paris where the Paris Exposition had shocked visitors with the display of “non-Victorian” nude statues by French sculpture Rodin. It had also been the first public demonstration of a fascinating new device called a “tape recorder.” Much was new and exciting in this “New age of mankind”. At the time half the world’s great ocean liners were being built in Great Britain. These resources would be greatly needed after the Martians ‘departed’.

Many of the ‘advanced’ nations of the world were transforming their societies from a traditional agrarian-rural one into an urban society of much industrialization. The Martians had done nothing to stem this tide.

Internal combustion vehicles were on their way up. In America the people had been told their nation held some 8000 horseless carriages (auto-mobiles) and in the future many thousands more of those noisy, smoky contraptions could be expected to “flood the roads” (There had only been four in America in 1895). Very few truly thought that would ever happen. Although there were those who did despair of such possibilities, I recall one man writing; “The motor-cars that went by northward and southward grew more and more powerful and efficient, whizzed faster and smelt worse; there appeared great clangorous petrol trolleys delivering coal and parcels in the place of vanishing horse-vans; motor-omnibuses ousted the horse-omnibuses, even the Kentish strawberries going Londonward in the night took to machinery and clattered instead of creaking, and became affected in flavor by progress and petrol.” Steam conveyances were being replaced by electric trams for the masses in ‘modern’ cities.

Late evening rides in Hansen cabs simply for pleasure were gone now as were the coffee shops and storefronts we had come to rely upon for our simple needs. I remember a loaf of bread had cost 3 cents, a gallon of milk was 10 cents and a gallon of gas could be purchased for as little as 4 cents. It was also a time when the “upper class” expected the so-called lower and middle classes to “know their place.” Many areas in society were class ridden. Very soon there would be much fewer areas for anyone to put their noises out of place!

In Russia an unknown dissident named Vladimir Ilyich dressed in a shabby waistcoat was calling for a worker’s revolution. Very few at the time were ready to follow him. Later that would change, and not for the better, as the ill winds of a new man-made war blew across much of a still recovering world. He would become one of the world’s most infamous mass murderers well beyond the pitiful efforts of old London’s Jack the Ripper.

            On 8 September 1900 a massive hurricane of tremendous power and scope struck the American coast at Galveston, Texas, with 120 mile per hour winds. This storm would be marked in American lore at the time as the worst natural disaster in that nation’s history. The storm took the lives of some 6000 residents and caused $20 million in property damage. Yet this storm, thought to have been so grave in the minds of those who were affected in so many ways, as it should have been, paled in comparison to the “Martian storm” which would crash upon our planetary shore a few months later.

            It was also in 1900 that great thinkers such as Sigmund Freud and Max Planck were at work, both of whom were to survive this fast approaching planetary holocaust. It would be Planck (truly the world’s first quantum physicist) who gave us his new theory of quantum mechanics; a new method proposed to explain how electromagnetic radiation worked which lead the way to modern physics in the new twentieth century and the study of such tiny particles (quanta) of matter and energy and of how atoms worked. At the same time Dr. Freud published his great work The Interpretation of Dreams in which he described his reasons for believing that dreams were the windows to our unconscious minds and how we all viewed the world around us. He would later become known for dissecting the Martian mind. It was no small feat for a ‘mire human!’ Within a year both men would find themselves working with a new group of men from many nations determined to put the world back into some type of order and control.             It crosses my mind it was early 1901 that Austrian doctor Karl Landsteiner was first able to explain there were at least three different types of human blood. The Martians had surely tasted all three. He would name them A, B and O. Medical advances would be held back for some time now thanks to the war. In that same year Mr. Wells would publish an original work titled An Experiment in Prophecy in which he wrote of his vision for the world’s future in the year 2000. In this work he saw more and faster motor cars, faster more efficient trains, and the decline of military adventurism. His work is noted not only for what he saw, but for what he failed to see which included submarines, successful flying machines, a bloody new war on ourselves and of course – Martians! He would soon remedy his flawed thinking about things Martian.

[END PART 1]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 2: Some historic perspectives in what we failed to see.]

Special Credit: Photographer by Peter Ivey-Hansen, “Intruder Aboard” by Darren-Curtis, “A Few Jumps Away” by Arthur Vyncke

Thank you music producers; and photographer for allowing Mads&Tulle to air/display your brilliant endeavors for our premiere. C. Reid.

Top Five Fast Food Restaurant in L.A.

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Top Five Fast Food Restaurant in L.A.

They should call the Southern California landscape Burger land, since it seems every type of burger was cooked and constructed in the land of palms trees, and Hollywood dreams. Burgers really? That’s seems like a Texas Dilemma. Saying that – in my opinion the burger is the staple to any supersonic cuisine. Yet, I might be wrong. Chicken definitely slips into the fast food conversation, but hey, this is my top five Fast Food Restaurant in the city of – Angeles and confusing parking signs. So, take a gander down the page – see which place is your favorite,

Del Taco

Being born and raised an east coast Taco Bell guy, I was never going to betray the Chalupa. But as people say – things change. Once I moved out west, I discovered – of the taco – and was smitten with the quality of such affordable foodstuff. For five dollars, one can conquer the hunger beast at least until the next coffee break. Those who know what I’m saying know. On Tuesdays and Thursday, they always have taco specials – for a very low price and the tacos are good. They also have other water down Mexican dishes which are also tasty for a little more than pocket change. Well two pockets, we are in a recession.

Carl’s Juniors

Upon moving out west, I also escaped the cult of the clown, and I don’t know what Grimace is, but his cult too. How could I leave the Big Mac and fall into the arms of another? It’s called stepping outside oneself, and I stepped out and stepped into a Carl’s Junior one day, falling in lust with their burgers – big juicy, beef burgers for a responsible day’s wager. They also have a healthier option for the bun, which I always treasure. It may not really make a difference, but hey, it’s all in the mind. Carl’s is opened later than most of the more recognized chain, but their food actually taste good for a fast paced burger stop. I have to repeat myself again. For the quality of the food – the prices are cool, plus the meals are pretty big. So, stop into Carl’s and have a Big Carl. Just make sure you ask for the burger. I don’t know Big Carl, but he might not be in a good space.

Raising Canes

If you see a line of cars stretching a block or two, you are probably at the right place. Canes specializes in chicken fingers and last time I checked – a chicken had no fingers. But that’s one of those mysteries like Stone Henge. I digress. These chicken digits are very tasty. It’s worth the wait if you’re really not that hungry. Their Chicken Fingers actually rank high for a fast food eatery. The sauce and the Texas Toast also help. For the length of the lines, it actually goes pretty quick, and the prices will not kill you. I would not eat it every day, but a couple times a week should not break the bank. So go to Canes, and get you some chicken fingers or you can give them the middle chicken finger and be gone.

El Pollo

I hear you already. I would never eat at any place called the Crazy Chicken (I hope you know that). Wrong. Oh, so wrong you are! As a matter of fact, you’re crazy. If you like a home cooked meal disguised like fast food, you have to pull up here! Grilled Chicken everywhere – in variety of sizes. You can pick your sides, which range from Mac and Cheese to veggies, tortilla and the Chicken, which is grilled over an open flame, ready in minutes. They even have healthier meals and the famous Chicken Tostada salad with the creamy Cilantro salad dressing. So, for health food – quick for a good price, you would be crazy not to go to El Pollo Loco.

Adios!

Chick – fil – A

Even though it is only opened six days, I am still in seventh heaven when I come here literally. The quality of the overall mostly exclusive chicken dished is second to none. Everything is fresh and hot and tasty almost every time I have gone. I have never been dissatisfied. It’s not cheap in comparison to other chicken sandwiches places, but I believe it’s on par with the better chicken sandwiches at the mostly beef bistros.

The thing I like about the Lord’s chicken fast food eatery is the customer services. Even If I am in a horrible mood, a trip the Chick fil A will raises my spirits. The kids are so polite and nice. It’s that extra little step that makes it a pleasant experience. You’re already eating bad. I hate to be abused by the staff as well. Anyway, if you want a decent meal with a decent attitude, roll through, don’t forget to say grace.

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-68)

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[PART 68]

DAY TEN: 11 September 1938

By the tenth day the Martians ended their attacks on geologic targets. All efforts from this point on were directed at humans and any facilities they had built especially communications networks and our cities. Nevertheless, the damage already inflicted on the planet was substantial as earthquakes, massive rains with flooding, torrential winds, high energy lightening and massive volcanic eruptions continued to impact much of Earth. What they had set in motion even though things seemed to be leveling off a bit was to last for years.

Much of our wireless traffic was still being blocked by Martian interference. By radio, only burst messages were getting through, and only about half of them were being received. Our efforts depended on keeping the lines of communication open in order to coordinate as much of our defenses as humanly possible. By accident or design we had lost several primary cable links as well as many connecting lines. Both central Pacific and Atlantic cables were no longer operational. Land based cables seemed to be holding up very well as we were still able to coordinate much of our military efforts. Our submarine forces were still able to send and receive messages but near Martian controlled coast lines the Martians had placed devices in the water which were interfering with our underwater communications. That was unexpected but not a major problem at least for now.

There was at least one very good piece of news coming into the Committee from numerous sources. As far as we were able to learn not one of our natural tunnel facilities reworked to house and hide hundreds of thousands of people – none – had been discovered by the fast moving Martian forces! Naturally it was not known if our luck would hold but we would take what we could get. Messages by secure cable were sent to all of our natural facilities reminding them to keep radio silent and stay in their facilities for the very reason that Martian rear forces were all over the place and if they located any of these protective tunnels Martian front line forces would be expected to return to these facilities and destroy all they could. This was not to say the people in these tunnels were defenseless – they were not. Many had military or police training and were very well armed but mostly with hand held weapons up to and including machine guns and small rocket launchers. Nevertheless, doing battle with Martians in these tunnels would be extremely costly in lives lost. The best prospect for survival was to stay ‘buried’ in place and wait things out while continuing to be vigilant and monitor radio broadcasts.

It was confirmed on this day that humans, possibly thousands of them brought from Mars were presently fighting alongside Martian hybrids and Bs in Central America, Southern Africa and China. Orders were confirmed to capture as many as possible by Committee forces but not at the cost of lives. National military forces were forwarded this new information but none of them indicated that capture was an option. Understandably the lives of ‘Earth men’ came first. This day also saw the first substantiated claims of rear area Martian forces using abandoned motor vehicles and trains to transport troops and equipment. Most of these reports indicated the vehicles were being driven by hybrids and Martian Bs. With this new information in hand Committee and national forces were ordered to destroy as many of these vehicles as they could when they retreated. Anything the Martians could use was to be destroyed including rail lines. In several areas where humans were deployed with the Martians, language teams using loudspeakers began propaganda broadcasts directed towards the humans.

SEOUL

The Korean Mars Traps were working and damned well at that. The only problem was there were not nearly enough of them. As the Martians hit the defense layers on the outskirts of Seoul they encountered the traps and took no effort to avoid them. If they had suspected these were traps reports indicated the Martians simply moved right into these tunnels which were collapsed on them and without pause – as before – continued to move over their own dead. This was becoming the norm for Martian ground forces. What was not normal was the Martians fielding no flying machines during the first heavy ground assault on Seoul. This was the first attack on a major city conducted without Martian air cover. This was seen as certain proof the Martians were defiantly losing more of their air forces than they had planned. At the same time Korean fighters were hitting Martian ground forces with artillery and tank fire backed by dozens of bombers flying in defense of Seoul from air bases south of the city around Osan. So heavily bombed were some areas around the city it resembled the surface of the moon even though it was covered by snow. The Martians were at the gates of the Korean capital but they had yet to enter the city.

Inside Seoul, Korea

Secure cable report from COM 6 to Pusan relay to Titan at Auckland: MARTIANS ATTACKING SEOUL WITHOUT AIR COVER. HEAVY FIGHTING NORTH AND EAST. TRAPS ACTIVATED. HOLDING. HEAVY, MEDIUM, LIGHT WALKERS DEPLOYED WITH HEAT RAYS SUPPORTED BY BLACK SMOKE.

Martian tactics seemed to make another change on this day. Taking well defended cities or heavily defended mountain areas, even when successful was taking a great toll on their ground forces as well as their limited supporting air forces. Martian ground forces were beginning to slow their relentless advances on several fronts even though most were still moving forward. The combination of slower advances and seeming reluctance to ‘take’ cities and simply cut them off spoke volumes as to their need to husband their limited resources. This so-called “pause in the war” would give many of our forces an opportunity to re-group and re-enforce. In some places, notably west of Moscow, the United States borders and China, Martian forces were actually stopped. The question was why and what were we to expect when the other shoe dropped? It was not long before we had our answer.

THE BLACK SMOKE KILLING FIELDS

Almost as one, reports came into Committee Headquarters faster than we could read them – that was not new. What was new were reports which were almost identical. Sources world-wide were indicating Martian air operations pulling away from supporting ground attacks in the middle of their efforts in effect giving up on the air war. It seemed the skies had been mostly cleared of all Martian Flying Machines even in areas where desperate battles were continuing. We could see no reason for the Martians to pull their air forces out of the battle completely even though they were still losing at least some of their war craft.

Losing no time commanders immediately increased their air support and bombing missions on Martian front lines as well as some known supply points taking advantage of the “open skies”. No matter why the Martians had suspended their air war we would continue ours. It must be said this temporary air advantage did allow our ground forces the opportunity to halt and in some cases push back some Martian forces but no one thought this advantage would last for long – it didn’t.

Around six hours into the ‘pause’ radars both north and south began picking up several waves of Martian Flying Machines were spotted sweeping out of the ice towards every major land mass on Earth. Some of these machines headed for cities but most were tracked flying towards areas where large masses of people had fled. Fear had driven millions from their homes across vast areas of Earth, as waves of human refugees ran for their lives before the Martians. In an operation lasting all evening and long into the night Martians flew missions dropping thousands upon thousands of Black Smoke bombs on fleeing civilians caught in the open. We now realized the murderous attack on India had only been a test. It was estimated these Black Smoke bomb runs on this day alone killed at least ten million mostly in the central plains of China, India, central USSR, vast open areas of East Asia, Central America, central Africa and the eastern United States. After dropping their deadly bombs these machines simply hit as many areas as they could with murderous Heat-Rays. These attacks were clearly intended to kill as many people as possible with the least amount of Martian forces engaged. They had also targeted great herds of wild animals in several areas. These attacks did not go unchallenged.

These murderous attacks would cost the Martians another 218 flying machines and would constitute their final massed air assault of the early part of the war. This was thought to have been a last ditch effort to inflict massive casualties on humanity while the Martians still possessed the air resources to pull it off. At this point no Martian attack on any front could be supported by more than a few dozen machines. It seemed we had crippled their air capabilities. Devastating to human lives as these attacks had been they appeared to have cost the Martians the air war over planet Earth.

The species which had flown powered aircraft for the first time less than 40 years earlier had reclaimed the greatly damaged skies over Earth. Even with that said our remaining air combat forces were nowhere near strong enough to win a ground war. The final victory for the battle of Earth was still very much an open question. Nevertheless, one thing was very clear: at the moment humanity was still losing! The Martians had conquered hundreds of thousands of square miles of territory and killed millions in a frighteningly short period of time.

 

DAY ELEVEN: 12 September 1938

Heavy Earth bombers continued to attack ground supply points and massed ground troops in Martian held areas protected by Jet fighters. Medium losses in bombers were due to Martian ground based Heat-Rays but several supply depots and staging areas were destroyed. North and west of London a major line of Martian walking machines had formed and moving to contact the outskirts of London. As our forces attacked the center of the Martian line of advance Martian scout walkers were already engaged in combat with British, Commonwealth and Committee forces in and around the north New London area.

MURROW REPORTS

Having once again braved the streets to report on the Battle of Upper-London reporter Edward R. Murrow had made his way back to the underground headquarters of the International Press Office (IPO) to write and then broadcast his report on the efforts to battle the Martians which had come from many directions to attack a city they had known so well in 1901. Our efforts to engage and neutralize Martian radio interference were beginning to show some promise but not well enough. Murrow had to record his report and send it to America by cable.

“Good evening. This is Edward R. Murrow speaking. This is New London calling.

“Once again the Martian horde has attacked this world city as they had in 1901. As before, the attacks have been relentless, the effects devastating. There has been much lost even before the Martians are able to properly enter the city. But this time there is a real difference. This time there will be no retreat. This time the famous stiff upper lip of the people of London will not be turned for this is not 1901 this is 1938. This time the people of London and their military forces have the men and the equipment to do the job and they have met the enemy magnificently. This will not be the easy Martian walkthrough of 1901. This time the people of London will stand and fight and they will continue to fight until the last Martian machine is beaten into silence. This time the people of London expect to win. It is clearly seen on their grim but determined faces.

“Looking west towards the outskirts of the city it is possible to see several Martian Walking Machines in a hard battle line, gleaming in the dull Sun of a fall afternoon. Their Heat-Rays are pulsing, their cowed heads turning this way and then the other like some massive prehistoric beast. But these fearsome machines are not moving forward along the line. For these machines have met the British Army re-enforced by Committee forces as well as auxiliary members from the civilian corps. The fire from these forces pours onto the Martians and it is overwhelming. Forcing the Martians to at first stop they now slowly retreat as round after round finds its mark. First one then another learns what terrestrial tank and cannon fire can do when fired from a determined force which is unwilling to retreat – not a single step.

“As two rounds explode into the face of the center machine a cry goes up. ‘One down. Go left, go left.’ Fire now comes from less than half the battery with fewer than six tanks remaining in the fight conveying their relentless and dogged attack upon the second machine. It too feels the might of terrestrial weapons staggering and then crashing into several buildings which had barely stood now exploding as the ground before them trembles. Once again the cry goes forth, ‘Shift fire right, to the right.’ The final Martian in the line now seems confused firing above its enemy. Seemingly it cannot find a target in its confusion. These are after all not super beings they are as mortal as our own and that mortality is about to be assured.

“Then it is suddenly over as five tanks fire as one. Not a battle plan it just happened that way. As the roar passes our ears we look to see an astonishing sight. The third Martian machine is hit by no fewer than four of the rounds simultaneously, splits in two and explodes before our very eyes. Silence calls its siren.

“That was how one small corner of the beginning battle for New London was being fought today. The war continues as the Martians are made to pay for every street, every cobblestone and every section of this once grand city. This time the people of New London were ready and it will be the Martians who will know what it means to be defeated even though it will be some time before they can be made to learn that lesson. But it is a bloody lesson the people of New London along with many around the world are determined to teach every last Martian they can find. The battle for New London will continue.

New London evacuates

“This is Edward R. Murrow reporting. And this is New London calling.”

As the Martians pressed their attacks the British Parliament, now holding their sessions in reinforced offices in Lower-London, refused to leave their capital city, continuing to coordinate all activities to defend New London and other British held areas. Throughout England the Martians would battle the determined efforts by these forces brought to bear on the enemy.

From an embattled New London Wells reported, “The houses caved in as they dissolved at its touch, and darted out flames; the trees changed to fire with a roar. So you understand the roaring wave of fear that swept through the greatest city in the world just as Monday was dawning – the stream of flight rising swiftly to a torrent, lashing in a foaming tumult round the railway stations. Did they dream they might exterminate us?”

Earlier in the day we lost contact with ‘Neptune’ on board CS Indian Ocean thought at the time to be stationed south of Ceylon near Addu Atoll. After no word was received during the next twelve hours command of the Indian Ocean submarine fleet was transferred to the ‘Prince’ on board the CS Star Fish which had been standing by at our Sea Cave facility B7 in Colombo, Ceylon. The new ‘Neptune’ immediately sailed out of B7 to a point off the coast of Ceylon and submerged. We never discovered what happened to the CS Indian Ocean as no sightings of wreckage were ever reported – the command submarine and all of her crew simply vanished into the fog of war.

In several areas of Europe, Asia, North and South America small special operations teams began operating in rear areas controlled by Martians. For the most part their targets were small operation centers and Martian supply depots.

ATOMIC BOMB BLAST AT LOS ALAMOS

“The Bomb will never go off, and I speak as an expert in explosives.”

Admiral William Daniel Leahy to Director C

We had our test even though it was not the way we would have wished. The Tunguska West team knew they had precious little time to complete work on the second “gadget.” They had the fuel-set detonator and they had all of the sections and individual pieces necessary to complete the work. What they did not have was enough time to test all of the components before building the thing. The war was coming closer to the test site and if battle reports could be believed they could expect an attack at any time. They had to work fast – too fast.

Project supervisor Dr. John Sadler sent an urgent wire to Lower-New York City for instructions. He was informed the Committee was sending a special ground team to extract the gadget and they needed to hold out for at least twelve hours. The extraction team would need to make their way to the test site by ground because they did not have enough secure air assets to send and for that matter they did not have complete air superiority to guarantee they could arrive safely by air transport.

Dr. Sadler knew that the team could not arrive in time so it would be up to him to make the decision. With this knowledge he quickly called in his team to explain the situation. He told them that under no circumstances was he going to allow the Martians to capture the weapon. He ordered the team members to evacuate the complex and leave the device and the detonator with him. However, because this was against Committee orders Project Chief Engineer Robert McFarland told Dr. Sadler he would have to stay as well and disobey the order to leave. The bomb area was a “no lone zone” and no one was authorized to be alone with the bomb and the detonator. There was no time to argue so Sadler reluctantly agreed as he reached out to shake his friend’s hand.

With the rest of the team heading southeast as fast as they could Sadler and McFarland finished the assembly work and stood by for the expected attack. They held the cable line open so they could report as much as they could before the Martians came on. They wanted headquarters to get the word that they had completed the assembly. After that McFarland picked up the phone and made direct voice contact with Lower-New York City. He knew the Martians were probably listening, but it no longer mattered. There was nothing the Martians could do now that the bomb was ready so they just waited. They did not have to wait for long.

Nearly three hours after Tunguska West was deserted by most of the West team Sadler and McFarland could hear the unmistakable hum of the Martian Flying Machines. Six of the big steel monsters had broken through the northern defense lines and were heading directly at West. The open radar screen showed they were headed right at them. They must have somehow discovered the importance of this out of the way desert location, most likely by intercepting radio transmitters. But for them it was too late. The detonator was now in place. The bomb was ready to fire. Sadler got back on the phone which had been kept open for a direct report to Lower-New York City, which was also being picked up by Lower-London. He reported that the six machines were making their run at West and that he intended to detonate the weapon when they got close enough. TV cameras set up in the desert would show the result.

Tunguska West explodes

 

The next sound heard on the other end of the line was a sharp high-pitched squeal. The Committee had their atomic bomb test as it evaporated the test facility known as Tunguska West, along with Sadler, McFarland and six brand new Martian Flying Machines in one shot. We knew then the bomb we had spent so many years developing had actually worked. That meant the one heading south would probably work as well. The Martians now understood we mere humans had a weapon of tremendous energy even though it was nowhere near as powerful as their super bomb, but what they did not know was just how few of these weapons we had. Needless to say, they were about to find out! They may not respect humans, but they had no choice but to respect our new atomic bomb. News of the successful ‘test’ was flashed to the carrier CS Horizon as it continued to sail south ready to receive our only other assembled atomic weapon and deliver it to the team which was assigned to ‘deliver’ the weapon to the Martians in the high Antarctic ice. In three hours the weapon would be on board. Four hours after that the team assigned to bomb the target would be on their way.

The ‘test’ at Tunguska West had also destroyed the unassembled parts of three other bombs. At this point the only complete yet unassembled bomb was secured in a deep level Tesla laboratory in Lower-New York City. It was now in the process of being assembled as fast as possible.

THE GROUND WAR CONTINUES

As war raged the Committee continued to coordinate with national governments to press the fight against the Martians. Despite a continuing effort by Martian forces to isolate large pockets of humanity our overlapping communication facilities were still keeping our efforts linked. The weight of the Martian attacks had weakened our capabilities but had not destroyed them.

At about the same time we were ‘testing’ our bomb at Tunguska West the Martians deployed 25 flying machines to drop Red-Weed on captured areas in northern cold zones in Canada and China in some of the remotest places on the planet. Seismic devices were also dropped on several cable lines knocking out many of them as we began to use several back-up systems. There was a very large group of targets of opportunity for the enemy to focus on.

Earlier Ham Radio operators had sent thousands of spot reports on Martian movements costing many of them their lives as the Martians locked their weapons in on their equipment. Now they were being asked to relay as fast as they could even more vital military information around the world. These ‘civilians,’ many very young or very old, performed magnificently under very trying conditions. However, even this method would soon prove difficult as the Martians continued to jam any and all types of wireless communication. It would take some time however, before they got even close to taking out our valiant Ham operators who were getting better at working around the Martian jamming while all the time hiding their radios and themselves.

ZEUS FLASH: TO ALL COMMANDS: MARTIAN LANDINGS AT AMSTERDAM, HAMBURG, GDANSK, RIGA ARE RE-ENFORCED AND ADVANCING SOUTH AND SOUTH WEST. LANDINGS AT SEVILLE AND VALENCIA ONGOING.

Deadly ground assaults continued around the world as the Martians continued to create human slave labor and Martian feeding camps while depositing supplies at strong points along the path of their machines. Hybrids and Grays as well as hundreds of humans brought from Mars were guarding the humans and supplies in their rear areas. Martians were just beginning to spray crops and general vegetation with a Red Fungus never before seen which wiped out much of the local food supplies and general vegetation as they continue ground operations leaving a desiccated wasteland in their wake. Our anti-Red Weed chemicals were having only limited effect on this new threat. We would later discover that in large enough concentrations this fungus could be deadly to humans and animals alike. Before we could counter this new threat we needed to acquire a sample. This was exactly what one team of Canadian Eskimo fighters would set out to accomplish in North Central Canada.

On this day United States and Committee bombers begin a massive 24 hour bombing attack with a mixture of high explosives, nerve gas and jellied gasoline on Martian ground forces along a line from Bismarck to Duluth. Our bombers were escorted to their targets by Phoenix IIs and Thunder Jets. And even while these aircraft meet limited Martian Flying Machines ground based Heat-Ray attacks took a deadly toll on our bombers shooting down 275 of them. The atmosphere of Earth still under attack from volcanic and massive fire debris adding to the Martian attacks from the ground made it still a very deadly place in which to operate.

As we charted Martian advances across China it was clear one of our three Prime Mineral Locations (PML3) code named ‘Harry’ was now in Martian territory. Fighting around the deep underground facility had been brutal with no word on whether it had been sealed off from the Martians before the area was overtaken. If the facility was taken undamaged the Martians now possessed a large new supply of processed uranium. Orders went out to destroy the opening to the facility at all costs.

With Martians pressing hard but moving slowly against the Americans defending their southern border Apollo ordered our ‘Vaults for Mankind’ facility at San Antonio, Texas, code named ‘Blue’ explosively sealed in the wake of local Martian attacks. The facility was built to hold mostly fine art and related items. If captured and destroyed it could have been a great loss. It would now be safe from Martian grasp – at least for a while.

New landings on this day were made between Dublin and Belfast in Ireland, Sicily south of Athens, Crete, Cyprus, and southern Turkey. In the Southern Hemisphere there were no new landings reported. However the Martians continued to push north on all fronts including India, southern Africa, all of Madagascar, South America, Australia, and well across Indonesia. The only good news reported was an indication that Martian ground operations world-wide appeared to be slowing. A lack of air cover was one of the problems they now clearly faced. Nevertheless, despite their air losses humanity was still losing ground – only at a slower pace.

Destroyed city in China

 

From several occupied areas reports were coming into headquarters mostly by cable that despite large areas having been overrun by Martian ground forces stay-behind units were having some effect on the war effort, most notably in central Canada, northern China and southern Africa. Although reports were spotty and rarely complete we understood these guerrilla units had in fact attacked and destroyed Martian supply depots, repair facilities and in one case in China a slave labor camp west of Peking had been retaken by guerrilla units supported by Chinese regulars cut off from their units. Several thousand prisoners had been released. During this attack several humans born on Mars and fighting with the Martians were captured. They also reported the Martian B commander of the camp had been captured and hung from a lamp post. Isolated outposts were holding on as best they could.

In Russia stay-behind units which could be contacted had been given new orders. They were to re-group and in as large of numbers as possible hit rear units in direct support of forward Martian lines rather than attacking rear area occupation forces.

In Manchuria near Chilin several Calvary units of irregular troops had formed and were conducting hit and run raids on Martian supply depots as well as raids on several ground radar and Heat-Ray outposts. Their efforts had so far been quite successful causing several front line Martian units to be re-deployed to counter attack.

This was also the first time in the war Committee psychological operations units were able to deploy leaflets by air on enemy units. The “target audiences” were humans brought from Mars who were actively fighting for the Martians. The leaflets reminded these individuals of their Earth heritage and “invited” them to “come back into the fold of humanity.” They were to be given amnesty for any fighting they had done for their “Martian masters” and would be fully protected from harm – at least from any human harm. It would be a while before any real result could be known from these efforts. These units were however still engaged in radio deception operations which had caused numerous attacks on false targets by the Martians. Radio jamming had also been somewhat effective on both sides of the war.

 

LONDON

The people of London were meeting the enemy as magnificently as they had in 1901. As he had done during the First Martian War the Second Martian War again found a much older Herbert Wells reporting from the front lines of the New London effort side-by-side with Earth’s military forces in a life and death struggle with the Martians. Wells had left his secure and not uncomfortable offices below ground to gain a firsthand look at events on the surface. Radio reports were one thing, but firsthand knowledge was always the key to fully understanding events. And so it was that Wells and his ever present squad of security officers made their way to the front. Finding a communications line he plugged into one of the outlets of the secure underground telephone lines and began to report back to the Martian War Room deep under the battling outskirts of the city of New London. His report heard, beginning in mid sentence, seemed almost familiar as it beckoned us back to 1901.

“…it was this howling and firing of the guns at Ripley and St. George’s Hill that we had heard at Upper Halliford. The Ripley gunners, unseasoned artillery volunteers who ought never to have been placed in such a position, fired one wild, premature, ineffectual volley, and bolted on horse and foot through the deserted village, while the Martian, without using his Heat-Ray, walked serenely over their guns, stepped gingerly among them, passed in front of them, and so came unexpectedly upon the guns in Painshill Park, which he destroyed.

“The St. George’s Hill men, however, were better led or of a better mettle. Hidden by a pine wood as they were, they seem to have been quite unsuspected by the Martian nearest to them. They laid their guns as deliberately as if they had been on parade, and fired at about a thousand yards’ range.

“The shells flashed all round him, and he was seen to advance a few paces, stagger, and go down. Everybody yelled together, and the guns were reloaded in frantic haste. The overthrown Martian set up a prolonged ululation, and immediately a second glittering giant, answering him, appeared over the trees to the south. It would seem that a leg of the tripod had been smashed by one of the shells. The whole of the second volley flew wide of the Martian on the ground, and, simultaneously, both his companions brought their Heat-Rays to bear on the battery. The ammunition blew up, the pine trees all about the guns flashed into fire and only one or two of the men who were already running over the crest of the hill escaped.

“After this it would seem that the three took counsel together and halted, and the scouts who were watching them report that they remained absolutely stationary for the next half hour. The Martian who had been overthrown crawled tediously out of his hood, a small brown figure, oddly suggestive from that distance of a speck of blight, and apparently engaged in the repair of his support. About nine he had finished, for his cowl was then seen above the trees again.

“It was a few minutes past nine that night when these three sentinels were joined by four other Martians, each carrying a thick black tube. A similar tube was handed to each of the three, and the seven proceeded to distribute themselves at equal distances along a curved line between St. George’s Hill, Weybridge, and the village of Send, southwest of Ripley.”

Later that day the small team made their way to a second location near a small waterway where the Martians were once again engaging Earth forces led by the British Army. Once again only part of the report made it through to the Committee.

“…but the Martian machine took no more notice for the moment of the people running this way and that than a man would of the confusion of ants in a nest against which his foot has kicked. When, half suffocated, I raised my head above water, the Martian’s hood pointed at the batteries that were still firing across the river, and as it advanced it swung loose what must have been the generator of the Heat-Ray.

“In another moment it was on the bank, and in a stride wading halfway across. The knees of its foremost legs bent at the farther bank, and in another moment it had raised itself to its full height again, close to the village of Shepperton. Forthwith the six guns which, unknown to anyone on the right bank, had been hidden behind the outskirts of that village, fired simultaneously. The sudden near concussion, the last close upon the first, made my heart jump. The monster was already raising the case generating the Heat-Ray as the first shell burst six yards above the hood.

“I gave a cry of astonishment. I saw and thought nothing of the other four Martian monsters; my attention was riveted upon the nearer incident. Simultaneously two other shells burst in the air near the body as the hood twisted round in time to receive, but not in time to dodge, the fourth shell.

“The shell burst clean in the face of the Thing. The hood bulged, flashed, was whirled off in a dozen tattered fragments of red flesh and glittering metal.

“Hit!’ shouted I, with something between a scream and a cheer.

“I heard answering shouts from the people in the water about me. I could have leaped out of the water with that momentary exultation.

“The decapitated colossus reeled like a drunken giant; but it did not fall over. It recovered its balance by a miracle and, no longer heeding its steps and with the camera that fired the Heat-Ray now rigidly upheld, it reeled swiftly upon Shepperton. The living intelligence, the Martian within the hood, was slain and splashed to the four winds of heaven, and the Thing was now but a mere intricate device of metal whirling to destruction. It drove along in a straight line, incapable of guidance. It struck the tower of Shepperton Church, smashing it down as the impact of a battering ram might have done, swerved aside, blundered on and collapsed with tremendous force into the river out of my sight.

“A violent explosion shook the air, and a spout of water, steam, mud, and shattered metal shot far up into the sky. As the camera of the Heat-Ray hit the water, the latter had immediately flashed into steam. In another moment a huge wave, like a muddy tidal bore but almost scalding hot, came sweeping round the bend upstream. I saw people struggling shoreward, and heard their screaming and shouting faintly above the seething and roar of the Martian’s collapse.

“For a moment I heeded nothing of the heat, forgot the patent need of self-preservation. I splashed through the tumultuous water, pushing aside a man in black to do so, until I could see round the bend. Half a dozen deserted boats pitched aimlessly upon the confusion of the waves. The fallen Martian came into sight downstream, lying across the river, and for the most part submerged.

“Thick clouds of steam were pouring off the wreckage, and through the tumultuously whirling wisps I could see, intermittently and vaguely, the gigantic limbs churning the water and flinging a splash and spray of mud and froth into the air. The tentacles swayed and struck like living arms, and, save for the helpless purposelessness of these movements, it was as if some wounded thing were struggling for its life amid the waves. Enormous quantities of a ruddy-brown fluid were spurting up in noisy jets out of the machine.”

Just before the small headquarters’ team was able to make their way back to the relative security of Lower-London Wells would be able to file one last report from a still working phone line.

“…and beyond, over the blue hills that rise southward of the river, the glittering Martians went to and fro, calmly and methodically spreading their poison cloud over this patch of country and then over that, laying it again with their steam jets when it had served its purpose, and taking possession of the conquered country. They do not seem to have aimed at extermination so much as at complete demoralization and the destruction of any opposition. They exploded any stores of powder they came upon, cut every telegraph, and wrecked the railways here and there. They were hamstringing mankind.

“They seemed in no hurry to extend the field of their operations, and did not come beyond the central part of east London all that day. It is possible that a very considerable number of people in New London stuck to their houses through Monday morning. Certain it is that many died at home suffocated by the Black Smoke.”

 

OPERATION MARS PRIME

(ATTACKS ON MARTIAN COMMAND BASES)

All command groups involved in the attacks on Martian Command Centers flashed their readiness to begin the operation. The most critical coordinated attack of the war was about to take off. They would be timed to hit each of their targets at the same time. It was time to strike at the very heart of the enemies’ operational centers.

POSIDON FLASH: TO APOLLO: PACKAGE READY FOR DELIVERY.

TRITON FLASH: TO APOLLO: ALL PACKAGES READY FOR DELIVERY.

ZEUS FLASH: TO APOLLO: PACKAGES ARE GO FOR DELIVERY.

APOLLO FLASH: TO POSIDON, TRITON, ZEUS: DELIVER PACKAGES IN SEQUENCE – BRAVO, ALPHA, TANGO. GOOD LUCK AND GOOD HUNTING.

 

ARCTIC COMMAND BASE MISSION

The Arctic portion of the daring three pronged attack was simple and direct. Strong air forces would take-off from five American air bases, two American carriers and two Japanese carriers in a direct assault on the Martian base at the North Pole. The first team launched from American bases outside of Boston, Providence and New York City manned by American, Canadian and Committee pilots consisted of 95 Phoenix IIs and 118 Thunder Jets escorting 259 Whitehead B4 heavy bombers grouped for the flight north over Grand Falls, Newfoundland. There they were met by 25 Phoenix IIs and 24 Thunder Jets from the carriers USS Ranger and USS Wasp. All of the aircraft carried extra fuel tanks (except the Phoenix IIs which did not need them) allowing them to fly all the way to the pole and back. If they could not make it home due to fuel or other problems two crude back-up landing strips had been designated at Baker Lake just north west of Hudson Bay. If the pilot made it to the Baker Lake area a team of Canadian Eskimo rescue forces would attempt a pick-up. Because this northern attack group had the longest flight they took off first.

The second group launched 385 Whitehead B4 heavy bombers supported by 55 Phoenix IIs and 85 Thunder Jets from bases in Anchorage and Whitehorse rendezvous over Point Barrow in Alaskan Territory. There they linked up with 25 Phoenix IIs and 20 Thunder Jets launched from Japanese carriers Zuikaka and Shokaku. Both teams would be lead by Phoenix IIA pioneer aircraft designed and equipped to navigate to pin-point targets. They would send out a tight energy beam to their rear to be followed by attacking waves of aircraft.

The combined total of well over 1000 combat aircraft made this the largest bombing mission of the war and one of the most critical as well as one of the most hazardous. Martian Flying Machines even though they were now limited in numbers were expected to fight these groups all the way in. And even when our bombers were on target they were expecting to encounter at least 60 land-based Heat-Rays in defense of the Martian base. These Heat-Rays would be the first targets of every Thunder Jet in the group and secondary targets of every Phoenix II but only after they were hopefully able to gain temporary air superiority over the pole.

The Thunder Jets would go in first in two waves of at least 100 fighters each to attack the Heat-Rays. Their run would be followed by the Phoenix IIs. Directly behind the Phoenix IIs three wings of heavy bombers in groups of over 200 each would begin their bomb runs. The first two groups were loaded with conventional high explosive bombs. The last group was loaded with Tesla’s version of seismic devices – some 1000 of them in total to finish the job of breaking up the ice. The objective was to literally sink every Martian structure at the base which unfortunately included the human holding cages in the center of the facility. Nothing was to be left on the surface. If the bombing did not completely destroy the facility the fighters were to continue strafing runs as long as their fuel would allow. This was to be a maximum effort.

Beyond having to fight their way in and beating back any Martian attack these pilots would be flying into an Arctic night made even more treacherous by tremendously bad weather they would encounter all the way in and if they survived all the way back home. It would be a two edged sword as we would need terrible weather as cover for most of the mission.

 

ANTARCTIC COMMAND BASE MISSION

When H-George Davis volunteered to pilot the modified Phoenix IIA to carry the bomb naturally there was grave concern. Not for his piloting or navigated skills of course as these were not an issue since he was one of the best available. The problem was whether people would support or trust a hybrid to pilot the only aircraft on Earth armed with the only assembled and ready Atomic Bomb? With this in mind the Committee decided that a fully human pilot would be sent along with Davis. It was only one more cover-up/lie and since they had complete trust in H-George the members knew the job would be done with or without the support of a “full human”. Besides, it was felt by some of the Committee at the highest level that only a hybrid could get close enough to the Martian base to set it off. They seemed to know where ‘they’ were even if the Martians could not actually be seen. Very close contact with the base was necessary. A close call would not get the job done. Needless to say, the Committee had a backup plan in case anything went wrong, but the crew of the Phoenix IIA was not in on that particular secret.

The light aircraft carrier CS Horizon got the job of delivering the bomber and two backups to the launch point off the coast of Antarctica. The carrier was one of the fastest in the fleet with one of the most experienced crews. At least that had been the original plan to launch as close to the coast of Antarctica as possible but time was running out. As soon as the bomb was safely on board the Horizon crew began preparing the modified Phoenix IIA to carry the bomb. The job would take a little over three hours to load, check, test and re-test the weapon. During that time the CS Horizon sailed at flank speed due south towards the icy continent of Antarctica. Air cover was triple layered with Phoenix IIs and Thunder Jets keeping a very close eye open for enemy air attacks.

Just before the group to bomb the southern Martian base took off the CS Horizon received word the northern group were on their way to the pole. They had sent their best wishes. Now it was their turn to fly. The Horizon turned into the wind and launched five modified Phoenix IIAs of which only one would carry a bomb. The other four were loaded with Tesla Heat-Rays, air-to-air rockets and radar jamming devices. Flying in a diamond five formation it was going to be a long flight mostly at low levels close to the ice covered ground. And even though it was spring in the Southern Hemisphere and daylight conditions vast amounts of airborne debris made for a foggy dust covered sky not much better than dusk on Mars.

Flying high cover for this mission were 28 Phoenix IIs flying along the same flight path as the low flying atomic bomb run team. However, this group would fly only as far south as the SPDL before turning west towards Palmer Peninsula for a hit-and-run attack on a small Martian base located along side the Antarctic mountain range. Their primary mission was to decoy any Martian Flying Machines away from the bomb group and towards the peninsula by attacking the Martian outpost and flying high enough to be seen. After that mission they would fly north to attack Martian ground targets at Tierra del Fuego continuing their decoy mission.

For the rest of the flight south the bomb group was on its own. One ground point the pilots who had been extensively briefed on the area expected to easily see was the Weddell Sea. When they flew over the Weddell Sea before heading into Antarctica they were expecting to be flying over an open ocean – they were not. The Weddell Sea was now a solid mass of ice.

 

GIZA COMMAND BASE MISSION

Because they were much closer to their target than the polar attack groups the team assigned to hit the Martian Control Center at Giza would be the last to set out on their bomb run. The team had assembled two groups of heavy bombers backed by Phoenix IIs and Thunder Jets from air bases outside of Rome, Italy and north of Belgrade.

They would however, not be the first to attack the center. Waiting off-shore were four Committee submarines in the Mediterranean Sea. Each of these subs had two Unmanned Gyro Stabilized Biplanes (USGB) mounted on their decks. The submarines were scheduled to launch all eight 2000 lb flying bombs at Giza just before the bombers flew over their positions. Tesla’s team had ‘programmed’ these unmanned flying bombs the same way he had done for his 1899 test boats but with a good deal more sophistication than he had available in those early years. (He had taken much from back engineered Martian technology and was about to send some of it back to the Martians.) Tesla was certain he could hit the center of the Martian complex within 100 feet with these devices. If I were the enemy I would not have bet against him.

For now all these men could do was stand by for the launch order. When given 310 Whitehead B4 bombers, 118 Phoenix IIs and 150 Thunder Jets would be on their way to the Giza Plateau with orders to “wipe it off the map!” The ancient pyramids and the rest of the structures at Giza would need to be sacrificed along with a great many other areas if we were to defeat the Martian horde.

Martian primary attacks and occupied territories – 12 September 1938

[END PART 68]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[NEXT WEEK: PART 69: ATTACKING MARTIAN COMMAND CENTERS, THE POLES AND GIZA.]

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-67)

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[PART 67]

DAY NINE: 10 September 1938

TASK FORCE BRAVO

In the early morning hours of 10 September our submarines off the coast of Southern Africa were ready to engage the Martian Patrol Boats in the first purely naval action of the war. At Cape Town and Port Elizabeth the Martians had established small but active port facilities which included our lost Sea Cave Facility Blue 10. They would not be in charge for long. The ten submarines of Task Force Bravo had left Mossal Bay and deployed five each boats at both Martian port facilities. At 03:00 local the submarines attacked. Coming in from two directions at both ports the submarines fired several torpedoes at Martian boats docked as well as the small number which were operating in the area close to where the subs had come in. Continuing to sail towards the bases the submarines surfaced bringing rockets to bear along with deck guns, machine-gun fire and Tesla Heat-Rays on the port and small Martian craft. The attack would last fifteen minutes and was a complete success. For the most part the submarines were underwater and heading back out to sea before the Martians had a chance to return much accurate fire. Most of the enemies’ return fire came from Heat-Rays which had little or no effect on our submerged boats. With little experience available on Mars for ocean operations it would seem the enemy, not surprisingly, was not prepared for battle on the seas. The Martians did not seem to understand how best to deploy their floating resources to any great degree.

In total we would lose only one submarine to enemy airborne attack, while the Martians lost 53 Patrol Boats during the engagement. Most of the firing at our submarines from counterattacking Martian Flying Machines was also ineffective as they could not penetrate the oceans to any great depth. It was the one great flaw in their Heat-Ray capabilities. No matter what the Martians had done so far we still controlled the seas. It was also reported that our submarines had been able to completely destroy the entrance to Blue 10. The Martians would not be able to use it any longer. It would take a good deal of time to clean out before it could be used again.

On this day due to Martian advances ‘Apollo’ ordered the explosive sealing of our mining facilities at Port Radium N.W. Territories and Athabasca Basin, N. Saskatchewan in Canada. The explosives caused entrance tunnels to collapse as well as allowing massive concrete slabs to slide into place blocking the entrances. (We learned that little trick from our Egyptian friends.) There was to be no mistake in these operations. By no means were the Martians to be allowed to enter these critical uranium mining facilities. It was not long before we realized the Martians had known about these facilities for a long time. They would soon be setting up their own mining operations. This was clear evidence they knew exactly how critical these facilities were to both sides of the war. They had brought small tunneling machines to both of these facilities and began work as soon as they overran the mine areas. They needed the uranium very badly. It was the fuel for all of their Heat-Rays! It was felt the Martian supply of uranium must have been critically short if they felt the need to set up mining operations on Earth so quickly. We would soon bomb all of the supporting facilities on the surface of both mines and we would return several times in the next few days.

THE BOMBING OF MOSCOW

As Russian fighters continued their desperate defense of Moscow Stalin gave his ‘permission’ for Committee bombers to aid in the defense of the embattled city. I had spoken to the Russian dictator by cable and as arrogant as ever Stalin informed me that the mighty Soviet Army was “holding off the Martian hordes at several points but if the Committee wanted to bomb them he would not disapprove of the action.”

Bombing a Martian position just outside of Moscow

Our intelligence reports, photo reconnaissance as well as several Ham Radio messages made it clear the Martians had massed a very large ground force just east of Moscow and a bombing attack on that force would be of great value. It was noted that Moscow had little or no air cover at the time and they were being taken apart piece by piece from the air even as thousands of anti-aircraft guns massed their fires on the attacking machines.

Preparing for the attack we staged our bombers at 26 airstrips in and around Warsaw, Poland. In total 522 bombers mostly heavy Whitehead B4s supported by 110 Phoenix IIs and 214 Thunder Jets were set to hit the Martians in force on the eastern edge of Moscow. It was felt that this opportunity should not be passed up as the Martians had been hit hard over Greenland and were not expected to defend the airspace around Moscow in strength. Reports coming in from Moscow as well as sparse radar reports showed Martian air cover was very low. Stalin had indicated no more than 18 Martian Flying Machines were hitting Moscow at the time, mostly from medium altitude.

The aircraft took off at day break to take advantage of any good lighting conditions that may be afforded. Nevertheless, most of the flight was made in dark gray skies obscured by much debris still being pumped into the atmosphere by volcanic eruptions and huge fires ongoing world-wide. Rendezvousing over Vitebsk and Kaluga Russia both bomber streams were required to fight off attacks by a dozen or more Martian machines. With strong fighter cover the Martians were only able to down ten bombers and four Phoenix IIs with a loss of three of their machines before breaking off and heading north. Once again the Martians seemed to be holding off on their air attacks.

Coming in from northwest and southwest the bombers were led in by Phoenix IIs flying led and top cover. Thunder Jets lined up on both sides of the bombers also covered the rear of the bomber formations lined up on the bombing run. At that point all hell broke loose.

Dropping out of orbit no fewer than 30 Martian Flying Machines came through the dense high clouds flying straight into the bomber formations firing their deadly Heat-Rays. None of the Martian machines paid any attention to the Phoenix IIs flying past them at high speed. As the Phoenix IIs pulled hard to engage the Martians the Martians hit the bomber stream head on. Within seconds at least twenty bombers had been hit and were on fire. The Martians had lined up on the bombers on the northwest stream attacking each one in line. Seconds later, like a swarm of bees the supporting Thunder Jets banked in firing their machine guns and rockets at the Martians as the bombers continued to fly towards the target area directly ahead on the eastern edge of the city and just beyond. The attack had not broken up the run. The bombers were going to drop their loads on areas engaged in close in fighting. Russians and Martians would be on the receiving end of the raid.

Despite determined Martian efforts most of the bombers got through dropping their deadly loads on the leading edges of the Martian Walker formations. The concentrated Martian formations were hit dead on by both bomber streams with devastating effect. This would be one of the most concentrated and most effective bombing missions of the war. Reports from Russian ground forces indicated the effort had in fact halted the Martian advance even though hundreds of hard pressed Russian troops had been caught and killed in the attack. As the bombers turned for home 50 Phoenix IIs continued the air battle over Moscow causing all of the remaining Martian Flying Machines to break off their air attacks and head north. The Martians had lost six more machines.

As the Martians broke on the east and their remaining ground forces on that front began to move north and south around the city a message came in from a lone Ham Radio operator. “Thank you my friends.” ‘Vodka Drinker’ was still in the fight.

Soviet troops counter attack Martians

By no means did this successful bombing effort stop the overall effort by the Martians to take Moscow, but they would need to come at the fortified city from a new direction. In the meantime, they deployed their considerable ground forces around the city cutting it off from the outside world. The battle continued even as a majority of their ground forces moved on to the next objective. Moscow was still standing and taking what they could from the Martians. By night the Soviet artillery was firing mustard gas on the western front mixed in with high explosives. The wind was in their favor and the cut off Soviet fighters would continue the fight. The Martians would continue to feel the full weight of Soviet firepower.

THE MARTIANS CONTINUE TO ADVANCE

Civilization was still on the run as millions stampeded to areas falsely thought to be safe. As the forests and grasslands continued to burn, cities and towns in too many locations around the world to keep track of continued to fall to the blood thirsty Martians. Martian ground forces supported by light air cover were moving fast in the Southern Hemisphere. No army on Earth could move that fast and with so much destructive power at their disposal.

In southern Africa the Martians had pushed north on a line from Mocameds on the west coast to Salisbury and Quelimane on the east. Pretoria was now a rubble-strewn blackened coffin.

From our COM 11 center in New Deli word came that landings were made at Manja, Madagascar and it was not long before the area was fully under Martian control. Landings were also made for the first time in India at Trivandrum, Mysore, Madras and Mangalore. Hundreds of thousands of Indians fled north as Indian army and air forces engaged the Martians at all points. Individual units fought with ferocity attempting to hold back wave after wave of Martian ground and Walker forces to no avail. Time-after-time Indian forces were routed and had to retreat. As always the price in human lives had been high.

Coastal city completely destroyed by Martians with no survivors

Off the coast of Trivandrum the Indian Navy pounded Martian landing forces before losing fourteen warships to Martian Heat-Ray counter attacks. In central India, far away from any fighting Martian Flying Machines flew over and dropped thousands of Black Smoke bombs on fleeing civilians. Literally millions lost their lives on the Indian plains during the next few days well before any Martian set ‘foot’ in central India. The murderous Martians had located a “soft target.” It would not be the last.

In central Africa a 1000 mile wide area from Cameroun to Ethiopia was now Martian controlled territory. From this extensive area Martian forces moved north and south. Out of their landings in Morocco the Martians were fighting south and north east flanking the Atlas Mountains. Casablanca, Ifni, Oran and Algiers were all in Martian ‘hands’. Losses had been very heavy.

In Australia heavy Martian ground forces continued to push north now in control of half of the country holding and advancing on a line from Meekatharra, Lake Amadeus east to Charleville and Brisbane now in close battle. Word out of our Sea Cave Facility B8 on the Brisbane coast indicated the Martians had not yet discovered the well concealed facility. They were ordered to go radio silent and monitor activity to be reported by secure cable only. Two submarines in place at B8 were making plans to sail out under cover of darkness to engage Martian forces now attacking Brisbane. Front line enemy forces out of northern Australia moving on to New Guinea were fighting in the jungle against local tribes along with re-enforced Aussie troops. New Guinea had gone radio silent with nothing more coming out since the invasion began. My thoughts went to the old head hunter chief who had visited our Committee offices so many years ago. I hoped he and his tribe would find good hunting. Both critical mining facilities at Rum Jungle, Northern Territories and Mary Kathleen, Queensland had been explosively sealed by Committee security teams.

Both were now in Martian occupied territory and it was expected Martian teams would soon be at work attempting to enter the mines. Inside both they would discover more than a few explosive surprises left behind by the Aussies. There were not enough local resources to bomb these facilities.

Out of South America came reports of Martian advances north on a line from Santa Fe east and west to both coasts. Santiago, Rosaria, Montevideo and Buenos Aires had all seen heavy fighting and great destruction. Black Smoke had been extensively used in these areas. Even though the Martians appeared to be ill-prepared to fight in a jungle environment they nevertheless pressed the fight in the demanding terrain. Their remaining populations and few structures were now cut off by advancing Martian forces. The Martians were not wasting any time on these areas staying only long enough to destroy any and all vital infrastructures they could find. Communications with these areas was spotty at best. One of the last reports out of Buenos Aires indicated that Martian Bs and hybrids had been left behind and were actively capturing or killing as many people as possible. Large internment camps had been set-up in both Buenos Aires and Santiago – feeding command As was now ongoing at these camps.

Martian walking machines continued to push north from the tip of South America setting fires to any jungle area they come across. Despite valiant efforts one by one the cities of South America fell leaving behind scattered national and Committee forces now developed into guerrilla warfare fighting out of reinforced bastions of humanity which had been bypassed by the Martians. At many of these fighting points the Martians left Grays and hybrids to finish up the work.

Martian forces were also moving out from their landings at Campinas on the east coast and Cali on the northwest coast of South America. Vast areas were soon overrun. One of the last messages out of Cali indicated the Martians had fielded new transport carriers carrying small tunneling machines. They had also unloaded several small Patrol Boats at Cali. Spotter reports were able to confirm the sightings of Patrol Boats at Campinas as well as Montevideo Harbor. Transport crawlers were moving the Patrol Boats at Campinas to the coast at Rio de Janeiro. Rio was blacked out. Nothing was coming through.

In the northern hemisphere the Martians were moving out of the now fully occupied MLZ south through Guatemala and Honduras moving well despite the local mountains.

Headquarters U.S. Central Command, Fort Worth, Texas

Burst report followed by cable report from Commander U.S. forces to New Washington Center: HEAVY MARTIAN GROUND FORCES SUPPORTED BY MEDIUM AIR FORCES HAVE LAUNCHED SIMUITANEOUS ATTACKS ACROSS NORTHERN AND SOUTHERN BORDERS. ENEMY ENGAGED SOUTH AT SAN DIEGO, TUSCON, EL PASO, CORPUS CHRISTI, NORTH AT TACOMA, SPOKANE, MINOT, DULUTH, GREEN BAY. DEEP PENETRATION BY HEAVY WALKERS TO REAR AREAS WITHOUT AIR OR GROUND SUPPORT. HEAVY FIGHTING ON ALL FRONTS. ENEMY ATTEMPTING TO DEVELOP REAR GUARD ACTION. ALL LINES PRESENTLY HOLDING.

North out of the MLZ Martian assault waves came into contact with several infantry and armor armies of the United States near San Diego, Tucson, El Paso, and Corpus Christi. The Americans fielded well over 400,000 men supported by 4500 tanks, ten thousand pieces of artillery and over 1800 combat aircraft. U.S. Air Forces began their counter attack from the air with 495 Phoenix IIs, 825 Thunder Jets and 560 heavy Whitehead B4 jet bombers. Sea Cave Facility B1 at San Diego was still operational and supplying vital intelligence data to American forces.

On the northern border with Canada Martian forces came across at Tacoma, Spokane, Minot, Duluth and Green Bay. On that battle line they were met by four American Armies numbering 420,000 men supported by 3250 tanks, 8500 artillery pieces and 390 Phoenix IIs, 495 Thunder Jets and 600 Whitehead B4 jet bombers. American forces at Green Bay were also supported by two re-grouped Canadian infantry divisions numbering around 29,000 men. From this point on the Americans would launch continuous bomb runs at the Martian lines until they literally ran out of aircraft! At the start of the battle in the north the Americans fired over 180,000 rounds of artillery at the advancing Martians backed by massive air attacks. The Martians must have known this would be a titanic battle as they led both American attacks with 2500 large Walkers, well over 5000 medium Walkers and at least the same number of small Walkers across both borders. They also fielded no fewer than 6000 armored transport vehicles for the attack. For these attacks close in air support would prove to be critical.

Martian air cover at the south numbered at least 150 flying machines with another 170 supporting the northern attack. It was clear the Martians were beginning to feel the weight of our aerial attacks on their flying machines. Both battle fronts were soon reporting at least 500 large Martian Walkers on both fronts had not engaged American front line units and had flown very low but very fast through and beyond the front lines to positions behind the main American forces and were attacking from a secondary rear position. This tactic had not been reported before. Both American groups were now fighting on two fronts as reserve units quickly entered the fight! Massed bomber wings of 500 or more aircraft began pounding these machines supported by Thunder Jets along several points.

Greenland was now completely occupied by the Martians.

In Asia the Martians now controlled a huge rectangular area bordered on the north on a line from Ayan on the coast of the Sea of Okhotosk west to the Chuna River in the USSR and south on a line from Pyongyang in northern Korea on the east to Anhsi, China on the west. In a small cave just outside Taiyuan top members of the Chinese government met hoping to cobble together an effort to counter attack the swarming Martians. What remained of Tokyo, as well as Seoul and Peking were under heavy attack. The Korean government in Seoul remained in place as the city took great losses in lives and a heavy toll on the Martian invaders.

In England the Martians had fought their way south to Birmingham and south west into Wales. A massive hail storm had formed along the same line and was now moving south east. The great industrial cities of Manchester and Liverpool were burning furiously as strong Martian forces cut off these cities before continuing south towards New London. We had no radio contact with either city for hours. Scottish regiments, joined with British divisions, formed a strong defensive line which was slowly being pushed south. Casualties were heavy as armor and artillery units pounded the mostly medium sized Walkers in combination with ground attacks by fighter bombers of the Royal Air Force. Flanking the British ‘Orange Line’ were two Committee heavy Infantry divisions supported by 65 of our own Walkers. On the eastern end our Walkers were fighting point-to-point with their Martian counterparts. They were hard pressed but were holding the line.

Heat Ray attack on an old section of London

On the mainland of Europe enemy ground forces had landed in Sweden moving east into Finland linking up with their forces which had earlier landed at Petrozavodsk. Finland was now effectively in Martian hands. At the same time advanced elements of that group had crossed over the North and Baltic Sea landing at Amsterdam, Hamburg, Gdansk and Riga. The area had been bombarded continuously for six hours before the landings were made. These areas were now radio silent with no word out since the landings. Word was also received that the Martians had captured intact our massive Grain Storage Facility code named ‘Mercury’ at Bergen, Norway. No further information was coming through from that area.

THE ‘GADGET’ FLYS SOUTH

With Martians advancing so fast on all fronts ‘Poseidon’ flash radioed the Committee submarine CS Tunguska a new order for the delivery of the atomic bomb (the Gadget). The Tunguska was still heading south presently just off the coast of Natal, Brazil. Wanting to waste no time the submarine was ordered to change course and head for the St. Peter and St. Paul Rocks area in mid-Atlantic. The area had seen very little Martian activity and could be easily located by the submarine. There the boat would rendezvous with the American medium carrier USS Independence. The bomb would be loaded on a Whitehead B4 jet bomber and under heavy escort from the carrier (including most of the Phoenix IIs and Thunder Jets on board) to the CS Horizon steaming towards the northern coast of South Georgia Island. As it flew south two full carrier task force groups would launch aircraft on both flanks of its flight path to South Georgia. On the Horizon the bomb would be loaded on a specially constructed Phoenix IIA for its final destination – the South Pole.

Apollo had sent word to Poseidon to be prepared to hit their objective in 72 hours. At the same time as the southern attack Apollo would be prepared to launch an all out attack on the Martian North Pole Command Center. Three east coast American air bases and two west coast American air bases along with two carriers in both the north Atlantic (USS Ranger and USS Wasp) and North Pacific (Zuikaka and Shokaku from Japan) would launch the attack over the North Polar ice. These twin attacks would be made in coordination with an all out bombing attack at the Central Martian Command Center at Giza. It was time to hit their command and control centers as hard as we could all at the same time. The only question was, did we have enough time to pull it off?

Late in the day both north and south radars were reporting a new build-up of enemy forces at both poles. The Martians appeared to be sending in new machines and new ground troops to their command areas. Giza was also re-enforced by de-orbiting Martian machines. As far as our radars could tell us the Martians now had fewer than 100 craft in orbit around the Earth. It was thought this indicated the Martians had lost a greater portion of their ground and air forces than they had anticipated. They seemed to be sending in their reserve forces.

By no means were we winning this war as we continued to suffer heavy losses of men and equipment as we were being pushed back at most points on the ground. However, we had forced the Martians to surrounded and cut off cities without capturing them and we still had command of the seas. We had also fought them to a standstill in the skies over Earth even though our air losses had been substantial. We could still hit them hard and they knew it. Only on the ground were they still vastly superior and still advancing but even then we had not given up an inch of ground without inflicting heavy casualties on their forces. They must have known even with their superior weapons of war their capabilities had their limits. They must have wondered if they had deployed sufficient forces to take our planet. Whatever they thought by this ninth day of the war it must have been clear that Earth was going to continue to fight like hell and there would be no surrender.

Our intelligence group at the Committee openly debated if the Martians were capable of sending a second fleet of spacecraft to support their invasion forces. With our Mars Watch capabilities effectively destroyed we had no way of ascertaining the answer to that question until they entered Earth orbit. We knew they would eventually be sending large craft to colonize the Earth but increasing their military presence was another matter.

Martian primary attacks and occupied territories – 11 September 1938

[END PART 67]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 68: New London calling, the bomb at Los Alamos and Operation Mars Prime.]

 

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-66)

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[PART 66]

DAY EIGHT: 9 September 1938

MOSCOW

It was just past midnight local time when the first wave of Martian Walkers struck the outskirts of Moscow from the east behind heavy snow and gale force winds as they continued to use weather as a weapon of war. Unlike most cities much of Moscow had been built above ground but nearly all of these structures were heavily reinforced concrete and steel encased buildings and each and every one was built as a fighting position. Most were best described as re-enforced bunkers and they looked like it. If Moscow’s defenses were to be described one would have to say the city had the most extensive trenches, the most extensive fire and tar pits and the most Martian Walker Traps than anywhere else on Earth. The Soviets also made certain that Moscow and many of their most important cities were well mined and well defended with tanks, massed artillery and anti-aircraft towers. Taking Moscow was going to be a very bloody affair – on both sides.

This is not to say the Soviet capital did not have an extensive underground – it did. But underground Moscow was at most no more than a tenth as extensive as New York City, New London or even Paris. Much of these underground facilities were built for communist government officials and their families and staff. For the most part the battle for Moscow would be fought on the surface streets of the city in close combat and it would be fought without any aid from other nations or the Committee. Stalin and millions of dead Soviets would see to that. For the most part win or lose it would be their fight. First “the man of steel” had a ‘problem’ to deal with. Just before the battle began Stalin ordered the execution of nearly 20,000 hybrids. He would be taking no chances with, as he would state, “those kind.”

Soviet troops attack Martians outside of Moscow – “Stalin had unleashed his Siberians”

 

To everyone’s surprise the lead Martian elements to strike the outskirts of Moscow had the distinctive look of turtles. The Martians had deployed low lying tanks moving on treads. Each of these vehicles were firing pulsed Heat-Rays and belching out Black Smoke. As this first ground assault made its way forward to what looked like open ground a signal from the team responsible for this area’s defense ignited the four mile long, 50 yard wide gasoline and tar pits into a massive wall of flame. Well over 200 of the enemies ‘tanks’ found themselves rolling over wooden supports which had instantly become a raging infernal. It was not long before much of these temporary support structures collapsed taking many of the Martian tanks with them. The Martians did not even pause for a moment. Forty large Martian Walkers floated over the trenches through the flames and began placing well aimed Heat-Ray pulses on the structures just ahead of them as flames continued to consume the luckless Martians below. The Martians were now inside of Moscow firing point blank at the tanks and artillery which were themselves firing with every gun at their disposal. The Soviets did not have any Tesla Heat-Rays nut they did have solid rockets. As they came to the edge of the city Stalin ordered his artillery to begin firing mustard gas at the advancing Martians. It had no effect on any of the Walkers but the follow on Martian B forces were about to pay a frightful price for their attack – and so were the people of Moscow. As they closed in dozens of troops used grappling hooks to pull themselves up the Walkers. It was nothing but suicide but they were able to bring down several of these deadly machines with planted explosives before these heroes were eviscerated by Heat-Rays.

House-to-house fighting in Moscow

 

In the dirty sky above Moscow the citizens could see a great number of prop-driven Soviet fighters engaged in a death struggle with 40 Martian Flying Machines. The Soviets had sent up 410 fighters to swarm the enemy even as the skies over Moscow became clogged with thousands of anti-aircraft rounds. More than a few Soviet aircraft were shot out of the sky by their own gunners. By morning there would be 18 fewer Martian Flying Machines raining terror over Moscow. There would also be no Soviet fighters to combat the remaining twenty-two still attacking their capital. The entire force had been annihilated.

NORTH TO THE ARCTIC

At dawn a group of six Phoenix IIAs with advanced radar took off from Fairbanks, Alaska on a reconnaissance mission towards the Northern Martian Command Center generally suspected to be located at the North Pole. In point of fact we pretty much knew it was there based on years of information, radar tracking as well as Peary’s and other reconnaissance north but we needed to confirm this ‘fact’ and we needed to photograph the area. In order to attack this center we had to discover how extensive it was, how it was laid out and how much equipment and combat forces the Martians had deployed at the pole. The compliment of aircraft, two each from the Committee, Canada and the United States, would fly in two teams. The Canadian flyers would link up with a specially equipped Committee photo reconnaissance model and fly cover to the pole as would the two American flyers who also linked up with a Committee Phoenix IIA. The reconnaissance Phoenix IIAs would avoid air combat if possible as the escort Phoenix IIAs, battled any Martians which happened their way. Considering the reconnaissance target and the distance to that target this seemed likely.

We were able to give these aircraft at least one advantage over all other Phoenix IIs. They had recently been spray painted with the same black radar absorbing coating covering the Command Aircraft CP Magic which was presently flying a tight circle over the mid-Atlantic. The Martians had yet to spot that aircraft and we hoped they would not spot our reconnaissance flights. Bad weather along most of the flight path was also expected to be of great help in hiding this reconnaissance mission.

The second part of the plan involved the return leg of the mission from the pole after the flight had taken infrared night optics photos. As the flight was returning south it would be met by a squadron of 15 Phoenix IIs and 121 Thunder Jets prepared to fight off any pursuing Martian fighters. If they were still operational the four escorting Phoenix IIAs would join the fight with the rest of the fighters against any Martian machines as the two photo reconnaissance Phoenix IIAs continued south with their critical photos heading for Fairbanks.

In an effort to distract the Martians two separate groups of ‘decoy’ Phoenix IIs were sent north from the opposite side of the pole. Thirty-eight Phoenix IIs out of east coast American and Canadian Air Force bases joined with aircraft launched from carriers on duty in the North Atlantic sent to attack Martian Flying Machines over the Davis Strait between Greenland and Baffin Island. At the same time a wing of twenty-four Phoenix IIs originating from bases in Germany, Finland and France landed and re-fueled at Hammerfest, Norway (soon to be under Martian control) to continue on to attack any Martian machines flying around the Greenland Sea area heading as far north as 80 degrees hoping to draw as many Martian aircraft as possible to that side of the pole. If the plan worked it was just possible the Martians would be too busy fighting off an attack heading towards their ‘suspected’ base from that direction to notice the small flight of fast moving and low flying Phoenix IIAs coming at the pole from the opposite direction. To say the least it was a very risky plan at long odds even though this was to be a fast hit-and-run mission to bring them out not a long term slugfest. The added advantage was that our forces would be bringing the fight to the enemy and any flyers they shot down would be a plus.

It would be a dark winter night all the way in and all the way out – just as the Martians liked it! Nevertheless, our weather people believed that due to expected wind patterns and rather scattered reports the skies over the pole would be relatively clear of atmospheric debris – relatively.

Our lead Phoenix IIs on the ‘decoy mission’ were soon picking up radar and ‘radio noise’ coming from the direction of the pole well before they came into range of any Martian machines. It was clear there was much going on at the North Pole. It was possible that our flight had also picked up the carrier signal we suspected was being sent to Martian craft still in Earth orbit from their polar base. This was valuable information.

It did not take long for our North Polar Defense Line radars to confirm the Martians had spotted our fighters winging their way north along both sides of Greenland. They had taken the bait perhaps a bit too much and were coming south with at least 144 machines. (Our radars were still not completely reliable.) With those numbers our fighters were going to be out numbered better than three to one. One slight advantage we did have was the continuing terrible weather in the area around Greenland which would make it difficult for both sides to engage in air combat. Nevertheless, with this new radar information the Canadians sent up another twenty-two Phoenix IIs and twenty-nine Thunder Jets while the British sent out ten additional Phoenix IIs they badly needed in their fight with the Martians over central England. The lead decoy aircraft were ordered to slow their approach to draw additional time for contact and engage the enemy as far south and as far away from the pole as possible.

Orders were sent to the fighters to engage the Martians only as long as necessary but to continue to draw them south to keep them busy while the reconnaissance group was heading towards the pole. When we had verification their flight to the pole was over and they were headed back south our fighters were to break off as best they could and return to their bases. The good news was that as far as we could tell the NPDL had not detected any large flights of Martian machines anywhere near the Reconnaissance Phoenix IIAs. So far our luck was holding. We could use a little right about then.

 

SYDNEY

On the second day of intense fighting in the skies above Upper-Sydney once again the weather became a factor as unusual rain coming down in heavy black sheets hampering the effectiveness of Martian Heat-Rays. The weather also had a dampening effect on our Heat-Rays and high energy spotlights. However, this weather did nothing to lessen the quality of Australian artillery and tank fire ‘packets’ centered to concentrate their firepower on the large Walkers continuing to sweep in from the west. Despite this juggernaut the Martians had yet to make their way into Lower-Sydney which was now 100% sealed off. Despite the desperate battle going on just above them our Committee Command Center continued coordinating every scrap of information they could in defense of the city as well as other points of combat in and around the southern area of our planet. Re-enforcement of units on the surface were sent by tunnels which were temporarily opened in the north and south of the city. These reinforcements included the ten rebuilt Martian Walkers we had deployed to Sydney.

The only major surprise out of Sydney on this day came when dozens of hybrids in Lower-Sydney took up arms and attacked government and Committee facilities in an effort to aid the Martians attacking on the surface. They came far too close to ‘taking out’ members of the command staff who had to defend themselves with side arms along with security and Tango forces. At least 180 hybrids in groups of five to twenty formed into fighting units, but despite the surprise attacks and the loss of dozens of lives these hybrid traitors did not last long. Most were soon cut down by rifle fire held mostly in the hands of enraged civilians. Without any leadership input all captured hybrids were executed on the spot. In at least one incident four badly wounded hybrids were hacked to death by machetes. Our Aborigine friends were also ‘displeased’ with the treasonous hybrids. This would not be the last time hybrids in our cities would turn on their neighbors. In many areas they became nothing less than a fifth column for the Martians – and most would pay a fearsome price for such treason. Firing squads were becoming very active.

TITAN FLASH: TO ALL COMMANDS: MARTIANS NOW SWEEPING ACROSS UPPER-SYDNEY – SITUATION CRITICAL – LOWER-SYDNEY UNDER ATTACK BY SQUADS OF HYBRIDS – CHECK 6 – ZULU – GOD SAVE THE KING.

From New Zealand, as requested by Titan, a full wing of Whitehead B4 heavy jet bombers out of Auckland came in from the east to hit Martian ground forces pushing hard on Sydney from the south. The bombers led in by 22 fighters were able to drop their loads on target as several warships pounded the same formations from off shore positions. Artillery inside Sydney added their weight to the effort which slowed the advance of medium sized Walkers being supported by Hear-Ray firing armored vehicles. After the bomb run the bombers were jumped by several Martian machines who had broken away from our fighters sending the bombers back towards New Zealand but not before our New Zealanders lost ten aircraft. The Martians did not chase the bombers opting to continue their air attacks on Upper-Sydney now better than half controlled by Martian ground forces.

Late in the day advanced Martian ground forces (special assault troops) backed by small Walkers broke into Lower-Sydney at the extreme north end of the city. The small Walkers had hit the security doors with Heat-Rays until the metal melted. When they entered the first tunnel the floors dropped out sending several of the small Walkers crashing into fire pit Walker Traps. The Martians continued moving over the traps until it was full with machines and bodies once again walking over their own dead and wounded. With this report Titan gave orders to explosively seal the Vaults for Mankind tunnels in Sydney (code named Silver) in order to prevent their falling into Martian ‘hands’. Southern CAIG Command Center ‘Star Light’ sent out a final report by secure cable on UFO activity that had been spotted over Sydney just before the air attack before evacuating their facility also sealing off their records area with explosives. (This final report indicated unidentified craft not of Martian origin had been spotted over the city. These craft had not engaged Martian or Earth craft. They had simply flown by to observe the fight.) Titan had ordered them to remove their backup set of Most-Secret files to a submarine stationed at the underground Sydney port along with all of the Mars War Room back-up files. Titan then ordered Tango units to break out of Sydney and allow Martian forces to by-pass so they would be set in place to organize stay behind forces to attack the Martian’s rear formations. Tango members were not happy to leave the embattled city but reluctantly followed Titan’s orders. Under cover of darkness they would fight their way out to the south to begin gorilla operations.

Titan also requested that ‘Whiskey Drinker’ and his staff evacuate Sydney and board one of the two submarines that had been standing by. He reluctantly agreed. Shaking hands he told Titan “We will see you in Auckland.” Titan had decided to stay in Sydney to coordinate the fight as long as he could. If Sydney fell, command would immediately transfer to ‘Whisky Drinker’ who would reestablish his southern command in Auckland as the new Titan.

Underground fire & tar pits and Martian Traps were now fully manned and fighting several lines of Martians. In areas where they were needed Sydney’s fire suppression systems worked well until power was lost. Backups worked a while longer. Within hours the forces of Sydney would be in a desperate hand-to-hand struggle with Martian forces in Lower-Sydney backed by small Walkers as much of Upper-Sydney lay in ruin. Several tunnels and main passageways had collapsed under intense Heat-Ray attacks. The main Martian force had now by-passed Sydney, continuing north up the coast with smaller forces headed inland. Sydney had proven to be too tough a nut to fully crack.

From the underground docks not yet in Martian ‘hands’ numerous boats of every description were making their way out of Sydney to the east. Attempting to give these vessels as much cover as possible the flotilla of warships were firing every gun they had at the Martians who were trying to sink as many of these small craft as they could. Once again this was not war this was simply murder on the part of the Martians. It would cost the Martians three more flying machines taken out by rockets. By the end of the day Sydney had downed another 13 Martian Flying Machines.

One third of Lower-Sydney, including the underground docks was still under human control. Titan had ordered several tunnels at multiple levels dynamited in an effort to stop the Martians from taking the rest of Lower-Sydney. Everyone who could shoulder a weapon was on the line determined to inflict a heavy price on the Martians for every inch of Lower-Sydney. The Committee member formally known as ‘Titan’ was now manning a machinegun! By nightfall this area, to which thousands had fled, was still fighting the Martians to a standstill. Evacuations from the dock to New Zealand would continue all night despite heavy waves hitting the coast from two storm fronts east of Australia. As the main electrical power plants had been destroyed back-up generators and battery power were mostly up and operational. In areas not under human control small teams of Australian forces continued to do battle with Martian Bs and hybrids.

Australian troops go over the top advancing on the Martians

 

NEW ADVANCES

Out of the CLZ Martian forces had pushed west and were now occupying the coast near Rio Muni. To the east they had fought their way across the White Nile and were poised on the border of Ethiopia which was itself now fully Martian territory. New reports of humans being gathered up were coming in from numerous areas. Ham Radio reports indicated the Martians were feeding! From Ethiopia came the first confirmed report of humans from Mars fighting for the Martians. A single human, fighting alongside Martian Bs was captured by Ethiopian Special Forces troops. His interrogation was said to be very ‘brisk’ before he was executed by firing squad. The captive ‘stated’ there were thousands of humans brought from Mars to fight. When this information was forwarded to Committee command centers orders were issued to all commands to take as many of these so-called ‘Martian humans’ alive if at all possible. The information they held was priceless. The point was also well made that the Martians had made an error in bringing humans back to Earth and if we could save at least some of them we would. They were after all hopefully still ‘human’.

Egypt was now fully under Martian control as a five pronged Martian attack east across the occupied Red Sea invaded the Arabian Peninsula at Tabuk, Medina, Mecca, Al Qunfidhah and Sana. Close air support for Martian ground forces was being launched from newly won air fields in Egypt. Heavy fighting was reported across the windswept desert sands as combined Egyptian and Arabian Tank Divisions lined up against the Martians in the middle of the country. Our Committee Secret Service Communication Center (COM 9) under the rubble of a bombed out Riyadh was now being used by the Arabian government as a Command/Control center coordinating the defense of their country. The only data coming out was by secure cable. All other communication links had been severed.

Moscow now under attack from three sides was expected to be completely cut off in less than a day. Petrozavoilsk had already been taken and Martian forces were now fighting in the outskirts of Leningrad which had been surrounded by a link-up of Martian forces attacking from the north, west and east. Radio and cable reports coming out of the area indicated bloody hand-to-hand fighting and great losses from Heat-Rays and Black Smoke. Medium sized Walkers and small ‘turtle’ tanks were doing much of the work there. Leningrad was able to report by radio their massive Martian Trap pits were slowing the Martians down. Casualties were in the hundreds of thousands.

In northern Asia the Martians were pushing south through northern Korea and had fought as far south as the Imjim River moving slowly towards Seoul. Fighter/bombers hitting the leading edges of the Martian advance were being supported by massed artillery and tank fire from across the river. Once again large Martian Walkers were sent south floating over the river valley. Seoul was soon coming under Heat-Ray attacks. The expanded and reinforced army assigned to protect the city was ready to “bleed ever drop of Martian blood they find.” The massive protective rings of Seoul were about to be tested. The “land of the morning calm” was giving the Martians as good as they were getting. The Koreans immediately began a series of raids behind the front lines.

Japan’s northern main island was well under Martian control by this time as the enemies’ ground forces crossed over to land at Aomori to continue their attacks south towards Tokyo. The enemy used small patrol boats during the landings at Aomori coming in under heavy fire by Japanese Defense Forces on land and in the air.

By this day the enemy had moved east from their landing areas in Canada towards Ottawa and Montreal. These cities had combined their defensive combat units and combat aircraft with local regular infantry and armor divisions stationed nearby in a massive counter attack supported by their remaining jets and heavy bombers against a ten mile line of Martian Walkers. This counter attack had proved costly on both sides which slowed the advance but did not stop it. To be sure the Canadians had stunned the Martians but it was not enough. Both cities were now reported to be in direct contact with advanced Martian ground forces. Heavy losses were reported as many civilians were heading across the border to the United States. It was a cold area best used by the Martians so they had sprayed Red Weed along every avenue of approach. The real fight for Canada would begin when stay behind forces organized and attacked the secondary Martian forces. The Martians had yet to face Canadian Special Winter Forces made up mostly of hearty Eskimo infantry. Their job was to attack enemy supply points and rear area forces across the snow covered plains of Canada. They were eager to get to work.

Canadian air forces launch their last anti-Martian rocket at two inbound

Martian Flying Machines destroying one and damaging a second

 

Surviving Canadian military units were ordered south to linkup with the Americans to continue the fight. The Canadian government seated in Ottawa was now conducting its activities out of a ten car train parked in a well-stocked and reinforced tunnel somewhere in central Ontario. Contact would be by secure cable only. Two jets were standing by in covered hangers for emergency communications if the cable went dark.

UNITED STATES SOUTHERN BORDER

The overall Martian military organization acted as one. For the enemy it was nature itself. For mankind it was a trait some had yet to learn even as the entire planet was in grave danger.

United States forces braced for an attack from Martians occupying Mexican territory in the MLZ were shocked when the attack finally came. American special agents had infiltrated the MLZ reporting the Mexicans had formed several armed groups thought to be preparing to defend the area against Martian attack. Reports were sent on to the Committee in New York City and London as well as New Washington Center. These reports however proved to be inaccurate. As difficult as it was to believe or even understand the Mexicans were indeed formed to do battle but their target was not the invading Martians – they were preparing to attack north against the Americans! When they came across the border the Americans, still expecting an attack from the Martians, simply could not believe their eyes. However, it did not take long for the ‘Yanks’ to understand what was happening and begin defending themselves against the invading Mexicans. (The Americans had attempted to contact the Mexican forces by wireless and when they received no answer sent in a five man team to directly contact the Mexicans. When this small envoy flying a white flag was fired upon the Americans returned fire.) It is well to understand that the Americans were enraged to see humans, for whatever reason, attacking them even as the planet was under brutal attack from an invading army from Mars. It is perhaps understandable at least at some level to note that no mercy was given – none.

US/MLZ Border near San Antonio, Texas

Secure cable report from Commander US forces Texas to New Washington Center: MEXICAN FORCES, REPEAT MEXICAN FORCES, NOT MARTIAN FORCES ARE ATTACKING IN FORCE NORTH ACROSS THE MLZ BORDER NEAR SECTOR TANGO 18 BRAVO. NOW ENGAGING ‘ENEMY FORCES’ WITH HEAVY ARMS. REPEAT MEXICAN FORCES ARE ATTACKING NORTH ACROSS THE US/MLZ BORDER IN STRENGTH. HAVE FULLY ENGAGED.

 

For the most part the well armed massed human wave attack from the Mexican Lawless Zone across the U.S. border was wiped out by United States Army and Committee forces in a few hours. United States Marines were soon called in to reinforce and engage the invading Mexicans along the east Texas border area. Heavy artillery backed by Thunder Jets and fighter/bombers did much of the work as Phoenix IIs flew high cover on the lookout for Martians. During the initial stages of the fighting it was expected the Mexicans would be backed by Martians having struck some type of private deal with the enemy. But no Martians were spotted during the Mexican attack even though it was felt they must have been well aware of this battle due to their known positions south of the border in the MLZ.

It was not known at the time if the Mexicans were working with the Martians or just attempting to take advantage of the situation. That question was never fully answered. No matter what the reason of affiliation it can be reported of the over 18,000 Mexicans who attacked the defending United States and Committee forces that day fewer than 400 would survive. American and Committee losses added up to over 1200 killed and some 2400 wounded. It was later reported (and confirmed by the Committee) that over 1200 Mexicans were taken alive during the fighting, all of whom were summarily executed by firing squads. (No one responsible for that American action against the Mexicans would ever stand trial.) The 400 who survived were to be counted among the wounded hours later as secondary units swept the area for survivors.

In the rubble of the Second Martian War as the people of the world asked for an accountability of recent events this MLZ military action against the people of Earth would be remembered more than any other as the single greatest treasonous act committed upon humanity by any group during the entire war. This unprovoked attack would be the final betrayal recalled during hearings by the Committee after the war leading directly to the break-up and dismantling of Mexico as a nation. It would become occupied territory for decades; finally broken up into eight new individual nations all of which would be allowed to speak Spanish but only as a second language. All of these areas would be converted into English speaking nations and their histories would begin at their formation and not before. The ‘general’ who had ordered the attack was captured weeks after the end of hostilities and was put to death after his trial. Several other MLZ leaders were also put on trial, found “guilty of planetary crimes against humanity” and put to death. When Churchill heard of this betrayal he said, ‘They must be taught a lesson that they and the world will never forget.”

Most of the surviving 280 (120 died of their wounds) were given 20 year sentences at hard labor mostly at work clearing the debris of war and on the three layer electrified wall built between the MLZ and the United States. The Americans were determined to never again allow an invasion across their southern border by man or Martian.

HEADING SOUTH

The Phoenix IIAs had made it all the way to the North Pole and apparently had not been spotted by Martian radars or Martian Flying Machines as they went in. The Martians had been taken by surprise (a rare thing indeed) so much so that no Martian Flying Machine was even overflying the area when the Phoenix IIAs arrived. Both teams were able to photograph the extensive area held by the Martians which commanded nearly five miles on each side of a triangle. What these images showed was extraordinary. The Martians had dozens of flying machines lined up next to what appeared to be temporary buildings (all round for some reason), a large radar dish on each corner of the triangle area and a 100 foot tower in the center of the area. The tower was thought to be the electronic homing beacon built to bring in their orbital craft to that exact spot.

The images also showed areas set aside for other equipment and row after row of all sizes of Walkers along with dozens of Heat-Ray surface-to-air units. Most disturbing were several relatively open air enclosures which were filled with approximately 20,000 people huddled under small circular cloth covered tent-like structures. This was thought to be the feeding area. No matter what we would have wanted to do there was no way our military forces could launch any type of rescue mission on such an area with any chance of success. It was clear that these people were already as good as lost. Rescue would not be an option. The command center had to be destroyed.

TITAN FLASH: TO ALL COMMANDS: SYDNEY NO LONGER VIABLE – MARTIANS NOW CONTROL ALL OF UPPER CITY AND 75% OF LOWER CITY – HEAVY CAUSALTIES – FIGHTING CONTINUES – WILL HOLD OUT AS LONG AS POSSIBLE – COMMAND NOW TRANSFERRED – GOOD LUCK TO ALL – CONTINUE THE FIGHT – GOD SAVE THE KING.

As the reconnaissance mission was heading south from the pole a signal was sent informing command that the Phoenix IIAs were heading home “Red Light On”. It was time to break off contact with the Martians in air combat now centered over much of southern Greenland. Despite the mission being dubbed a ‘decoy’ it did in fact turn out to be a real heavy dog-fight as more and more of our fighters were drawn into the battle. Our forces were soon trying to pull back to the south but the Martians were having none of it. They were ready to fight – perhaps more than we were as each side began pouring more and more fighters into the air battle. This was developing into one of the great air battles of the war. For the next two hours in the dead of night wave after wave of Earth and Martian fighters did battle to control the skies over the darkened ice of Greenland. At the height of the massed dogfight the Martians had deployed at least 400 Martian Flying Machines many of which must have been over our northern command cities the day before. Earth forces numbered no fewer than 158 Phoenix IIs and 640 Thunder Jets as well as 125 prop-driven fighters sent in from over 45 land bases and carriers. Coordinating all of this action was ‘Uranus’ on board our Airborne Magic Command Post ‘CP Magic’. By now Magic was joined by ten Phoenix IIAs as cover from any surprise Martian attacks.

Near the end of the battle a group of unmanned drone aircraft (Unmanned Gyro Stabilized Biplanes USGB), developed by Whitehead, Tesla and Lester Barlow (Barlow developed what he called his ‘aerial’ torpedoes in 1919) were closing in, sent from Committee air bases near Boston. Our fighters were told to be on the lookout as the drones were on the way. As they neared the dogfight area almost as a group dozens of our fighters flew directly at the drones expecting to be followed by several Martian machines – they were. The Earth fighters flying past the “square box” formation of 125 unmanned aircraft dove to near sea level. In the bad light they were able to see the Martians engage the new air threat. As they began their attacks all 125 drones exploded; set off by radio signals sent by the control fighter several thousand feet behind the formation. The explosions rocked the area as each craft holding 2000 lbs of high explosives went off. Nineteen Martian Flying Machines were soon heading towards a fast death in the waters of the icy Atlantic. For the most part this event explosively ended the air battle. The Martians headed ‘home’.

On the other side of the pole the reconnaissance team continued flying south. Contact with the intercepting escort Phoenix IIs and Thunder Jets had just been made and the mission appeared to have gone off as planned. Nevertheless, they began to feel uneasy for despite the fact there had been dozens of Martian Flyers parked on the runways at the pole and several spotted in the general area of their flight path none of them seemed interested in fighting the Phoenix IIAs, or even following our aircraft south. Something was thought to be very wrong. And it was.

Without warning one of the Phoenix IIA reconnaissance planes suddenly exploded in mid-air! There were no Martian Flying Machines anywhere in sight and no craft had come out of orbit to attack. The aircraft had simply been destroyed without being attacked from the air or the ground. It was instantly clear that some type of explosive device had been placed on the aircraft and there could be others.

The flight commander immediately ordered the group to fly over nearby Banks Island. As the island came into view a second Phoenix IIA which had been flying escort for the destroyed photo recon Phoenix IIA also exploded. With that the bail-out order was given as all four remaining pilots punched out of their aircraft sending their craft south on auto-pilot. Before the men were on the ground a third explosion was heard. All three of the Phoenix IIAs sent up in the American group had been destroyed. There was no way to know what happened to the Canadian aircraft as they continued to fly pilotless out of sight to the south.

Despite the loss of all six reconnaissance aircraft the team did in fact have one full set of photographs with them. This information was flash radioed to Committee forces in Alaska by the Commander of the escort flight who sent out the SOS and location of the surviving recon pilots. ‘Poseidon’ relayed the message and a Committee submarine standing by with Tango forces on board near Banks Island was soon on the way to pick up the surviving reconnaissance team members along with their hard earned cargo of images. These were ‘faxed’ by secure VLW submarine radio after the team was picked up.

Poseidon relayed the information by burst transmission about the planted explosions along with a verbal description of what the team had seen at the pole. Two hybrids who planted the explosives were later found at the air base. They had hung themselves.

By now the battle over the ice of Greenland was trailing off. In total Earth forces had shot down 114 Martian Flying Machines with at least 25 others reported heading north trailing smoke. Our losses included 112 Phoenix IIs, 381 Thunder Jets and all but two of the 125 prop-driven fighters. Most of our losses could not be easily replaced, but none of the Martian losses were retrievable. We were however able to rescue 43 of our downed pilots who had managed to survive a crash landing or bailed out for later recovery. We were most grateful for that. To my growing surprise the Martians did not yet own the skies of Earth. We might actually have a chance of winning!

It was quickly decided not to send a reconnaissance mission to the South Pole. As the radar traffic logged in around the general southern pole area was about identical to the traffic in the north we expected their base at the South Pole should pretty much reflect the one we had just imaged at the North Pole. Plans were now being completed to attack both bases at the same time by two completely different methods. We had to hit these polar command centers hard coordinating with a massive attack being planned for Giza.

That evening word came down that the area which held our Salt Mine Grain Facility – code named ‘Wind’ at Sifto Mine in Goderich, Ontario, Canada had been overrun by Martians. There was no direct information on the condition of the facility at Wind. Radio contact had been lost.

By this point it was becoming very difficult to receive wireless including burst radio and Ham Radio reports. The Martian orbiting and local ground jamming devices were doing a superb job. Adding to these problems several cable links had been discovered and destroyed but we had constructed so many back-ups messages were still getting through – at least many of them. Keeping track of the situation in Ontario the Americans launched dozens of photo reconnaissance missions covering large stretches of the front lines in North America.

[END PART 66]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[NEXT WEEK: PART 67: MARTIAN GROUND ATTACKS, THE GADGET FLIES; INVASION MAPS 2 & 3.]

 

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-65)

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[PART 65]

DAY SEVEN: 8 September 1938

On this day it snowed in Cairo. At the heart of the snow was a black greasy ash. It had the sweat smell of rotting death. There were no clear skies reported over Earth on that day. In higher latitudes digging out after one of the daily snowstorms was becoming the norm. It was a situation the Martians found difficult to operate in as there was very little snow falling on Mars despite the continuous cold temperatures. Snow drifts on Mars are practically non-existent.

All around the world along with reports of air combat and Martian ground movements came word of strange and violent weather. Our planet’s atmosphere was clearly under great stress as snow and hail began falling in areas which had never before seen such events. Hurricane force winds were pushing along great mountain ranges while cold desert winds pushed dust and sand thousands of miles along equatorial regions. Tremendously powerful storms in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans generating cyclonic winds upwards of 200 miles per hour and greater were driving destructive waves across much of these open areas, many now moving towards populated coastal areas. Torrential sheets of muddy rain were hitting the vast plains of North and South America as well as the great plains of Russia and China.

In some areas the great fires had been exhausted by those torrential rains where other areas were being greatly expanded by huge wind storms. As strange dark reddish sunsets marked much of our wounded world, those who could still see dust covered sunsets reported high altitude lightening appearing to cross horizontally for hundreds of miles at energy levels not thought possible. Lightning strikes in many northern areas were hitting at energies and numbers never before experienced as great amounts of energy injected into the atmosphere by massive volcanic events was being discharged back into the Earth. Some reports spoke of loud claps of thunder going off for days at a time like some continuous roar of distress. At New Madrid in the American State of Illinois an ancient fault in the Earth broke with a force of 9.1 on the Thomas Scale ringing church bells 1000 miles away in Boston. One writer would later recall it was as if “the very Earth was screaming in pain.” It would be difficult to disagree with that observation by anyone who was lucky enough to live through these unprecedented events. Many lower lying areas around the world were now being flooded by the massive melting of glacial ices and torrential rains. Most deltas such as the Mississippi and Mekong were already under water as was 50% of the American state of Florida.

THE GREAT AIR ATTACKS ON THE COMMAND CITIES

Despite the tremendous activity in the atmosphere this day saw Martians returning to aerial attacks on selected large population centers undercover of very bad weather. This time however the Martians would not only attack in mass a limited number of cities they would do so from mid and low altitudes expecting to lose more than a few of their flying machines but also expecting to do a great deal of damage to their selected targets. On this seventh day of the war the Martians concentrated these attacks on New London, New York City, Sydney and New Washington Center in order to soften up the defenses of our prime cities. We had advanced warning of their attacks from intercepted and de-coded Martian radio traffic. It was clear they understood our strategic command centers were located in these cities. They were in fact attacking the Committee itself and they damn well knew where to find us!

It goes without saying the Martians had decided to attack the most heavily defended points on Planet Earth. Each of these cities were built with great strength and ringed with layer after layer of weapons designed to defend against any type of attack the Martians would bring to them either on the ground or from the air. As an example in New London we had deployed nearly 4000 anti-aircraft guns, 445 solid rocket firing platforms, 153 ground and building level Tesla Heat-Rays, over 25,000 barrage balloons, over 800 high beam spotlights to blind the Martians and thousands of high intensity radio speakers (for use against ground forces), thousands of metallic balloons for release to confuse the enemies electronic equipment backed up by radio and radar jammers and one full Army Group numbering 179,000 combat troops with 2000 tanks and 6000 artillery pieces. These forces also held 52 of our own small Walkers taken directly from Martian plans and all of them had small Heat-Rays. (They were deployed underground.)

Solid rocket firing platform

 

New London was also ringed by thousands of minefields, Black Smoke burn platforms, fire trenches and over 9000 Martian Walker Traps. In the air we could still launch 82 Phoenix IIs and 287 jet fighters (a very small defensive air force to be sure), not to mention the six submarines under the Thames River ready to engage the enemy. And that was just what we had deployed on the surface! New York City, Sydney and New Washington Center all had similar forces prepared to defend their ground. (There was no attack submarine at New Washington Center with one command submarine, CS Tiger Fish, prepared to evacuate leadership standing by submerged beneath the Potomac River.) For the most part, considering the strength of our enemy it was pretty much an even fight. At least we had hopes it was.

As soon as we understood where the Martians planned to attack, New York City deployed eight rocket capable submarines in a circle around the city (two were left off shore as reserves and to insure a communication link to outside forces). Sydney formed their submarines in an arch just off shore again deploying eight of the ten. At New London we ‘parked’ six of our submarines in a line under the Thames River cutting across the city. They would be prepared to “pop up” and fire before going back underwater. They were also prepared to sail into Lower-London to evacuate the command group if the need should arise. I was determined to not let that happen.

As the Martians continued to press their ground attacks around the world, mostly supported by limited air cover eight hundred Martian Flying Machines came out of the north flying south towards New York City, New London and New Washington Center. Out of the South Pole flew 300 flyers heading for Sydney. We estimated that was just about as many Martian flyers as they could put in the air at the time. The great air battle for our command cities had begun. The fifth of September had seen the greatest use of Martian air power during the war on a wide range of targets around the world. This day would see the most concentrated air power of the war played out on only four populated targets.

Committee and national forces engage Martian Flying Machines over Western Europe

The first fighters to engage the enemy were launched from six carriers stationed in the North Atlantic. Of the 142 jets sent up to engage the enemy only 22 returned to their ships. Six Martian Flying Machines had been destroyed. Once again costs had been high but once again our forces did not pause in giving battle to the bloody Martians.

NEW LONDON

I was in our Lower-London Command Center when the first wave arrived over the capital. By our radar count (not fully reliable by this time due to loss of some facilities and general atmospheric conditions) around 280 enemy flyers were on the way to pound this city into the ground. My orders were clear to our air forces. Any available combat aircraft along Martian flight paths were ordered to attack in strength but to engage in hit-and-run tactics only. Phoenix IIs were ordered to stay with the Martian formations all the way to London. This order naturally left several areas with little or no air coverage but considering the number of Martian Flying Machines assigned to these attacks there was not much more expected from the enemy in the air at other nearby locations. Confirmation came when battle reports around the world spoke of Martian ground attacks operating with little or no air cover. This was an opportunity we took full advantage of as commands around the world sent in wave after wave of high altitude bombers to attack the leading edges of Martian fronts. At several points these bomber attacks actually halted the Martians for upwards of half a day! Martian air resources were beginning to thin out a bit. They had clearly underestimated our strength and capabilities in the air. I felt then as I do now they had also underestimated our determination to fight them at all costs.

These fighter efforts brought down only eight of the inbound Martian flyers with three returning to their arctic base damaged. Our pilots were having a very difficult time trying to locate the enemies’ aircraft in this miserable weather. Their onboard radars were not working all that well either. All combat aircraft assigned to New London were then ordered up to attack the inbound Martians and destroy as many as they could before they could reach London. However, they were not to engage the enemy over the city. New London itself would fight the Martians. There would be far too many munitions going into the air to allow safe over-flight by our jets. After doing what they could the jets were ordered to fly off to reserve holding areas in order to be available if and when the Martians attacked on the ground. We would need them at a later time, although some fighters disobeyed orders and stayed to help fight off the Martians. Phoenix IIs flying high cover would remain in the fight but only at higher altitudes.

Before dawn, not that we could see it, the Martians made their first run at New London from medium altitude. This group came in firing their Heat-Rays while simultaneously dropping seismic devices and Black Smoke canisters. It did not take long for black greasy smoke to begin moving across large areas of Upper-London. Once again burn paths and anti smoke incineration teams went after the smoke to very good effect. The seismic devices did much better this time as hundreds of already damaged buildings fell to these devices. With this second seismic attack on the city we did experience a few tunnel collapses but nothing larger than 100 feet in any one area and only one major collapse south of the Thames which did reach into the top street level in Lower-London. Repair teams were soon building holding walls around both ends of the collapse to seal it off. This was to ensure that surface Black Smoke attacks could not filter into Lower-London. By their attack pattern it was clear the Martians had pretty much been able to map out the city. Their hybrid spies had done a good job. Although the Heat-Ray attacks were directed on the surface it was clear their true targets must have been situated in Lower-London.

One group of enemy flyers concentrated their attacks on our surface defense systems including our Heat-Ray towers, high intensity speakers, powerful spotlights and rocket platforms while the second group pounded the surface directly above our command areas, power control areas and Committee offices. They had hit the surface areas above our Command Center, Communications Center, Radar Control Center, SAGED computer facility, Tango Operations Group, 1 and 2, CAIG Headquarters, the Cabinet Security Service facility and at least 52 entrance way facilities. (These hits must have been in preparation for ground attacks.) They had even hit ‘Tea Drinker’s’ area but missed hitting his command train directly under the reinforced railroad tunnel he and his command staff were in. My backup, ‘Tea Drinker’, ordered his command train to move with caution to a secondary location. And while the surface of these areas would have the appearance of blackened melted deserts – devoid of any life or structure – by the end of the day our layer-upon-layer construction over our most critical underground facilities all held. To take these areas the Martians would need to knock on the door and come in! We would be giving them a very ‘warm welcome’ when they did.

Before the attacks began every single barrage balloon was launched and every radio and radar jammer was activated. To be honest the balloons did not seem to have much effect on low flying Martians but we did see a marked difficulty in controlling their flying machines anytime they came within close range of our radio/radar jammers. Some of Tesla’s magic was having an effect.

Mid-way through the air battle over London the Martians began to pay special attention to radio areas – that would cost them. We knew of course the Martians honed in on any type of radio transmission and had expected these facilities to come under attack which is why we matched many of them with Tesla’s radar controlled Heat-Rays and rocket platforms as well as many of our anti-aircraft batteries which themselves were mated with our high beam spotlights to blind the enemy. In total the low flying Martians were able to destroy 82 of our Heat-Rays and several radar stations but it cost the Martians 69 of their flying machines. After these attacks we would be forced to reposition the remaining Heat-Rays and spotlights, but that force had kept the Martians from doing greater damage than they could have done if they were not there as our defense forces had taken the measure of the Martians with their own technology.

Martian Heat-Ray attack

By the end of the day the Martians headed back towards the high ice leaving at least one-third of New London burning but very little damage had been inflicted on Lower-London. We had lost another 106 jet fighters and 18 Phoenix IIs. For the time being we had saved hundreds of thousands of lives and on this day had beaten back the Martians in the air at least to a draw at one location. However, we also knew their ground forces which landed in Ireland were still sweeping south. It would not be long before those Martian Walkers lined up to attack New London in force. This time we were ready.

NEW YORK CITY

Within minutes of New London coming under air attack the first wave of what would total 310 Martian Flying Machines began to hit in and around Upper-New York City with pulsed Heat-Rays. United States and Committee fighters from both ground and carrier locations slammed into the Martians from three directions well away from the city and battled them all the way in. Now their air crews would engage the enemy at every level in the air as massive thunder storms once again pounded the city. Their Heat-Rays would do a good deal of damage but the storms they had caused became an enemy to them perhaps more powerful than man could ever be. Time and time again as the Martians fought off our determined fighters, they continued to hit targets on the ground with their deadly Heat-Rays and time-after-time in places the torrent of rain put out the fires almost as fast as the Martians could set them. The Martians could hit and destroy buildings and even small areas but for massive destructive power they needed their melted steel and concrete to spread the flames. Seemingly the “Sky gods” over New York City were fighting back!

Within a few minutes the Martians began dropping their seismic devices; dozens of them turning away from their Heat-Ray operations for a time. It was then our own ground and tower based radar controlled Heat-Rays opened up on the Martians who had finally come into range. It was clear we were giving as good as we were getting but only at point black range as the weather situation had done much to cut down on the effectiveness of our Heat-Rays as well. This would soon become a point-to-point slug fest between the Martians and the men on these weapons. By the end of the day 49 of our Heat-Rays and crews were destroyed but they were able to take down 39 of the enemies’ aircraft. The Heat-Ray at the top of the Empire State Building and ten floors below it no longer existed. Before they evaporated it was noted this one team had taken the measure of no less than three enemy craft destroying two and leaving one flying off trailing heavy black smoke. The fact that a majority of the building was still standing amazed me when I read the reports coming out of Lower-New York City.

The people of New York City could report one small victory when they cabled our headquarters in New London that at least one Martian Flying Machine had been luckless enough to fly over Liberty Island. This long held Martian Trap ‘removed itself from the map’ along with one Martian Flying Machine.

Street fighting against the Martians

For two hours the air battle and air to ground attacks continued even as the seismic devices went off. As with London this second seismic attack brought down hundreds of buildings most of which had been damaged by earlier attacks. Due to the storms the Martian Heat-Ray attacks had not done nearly the amount of damage one would have expected considering the number of flyers which had attacked the city. Nevertheless, at least fifteen openings into Lower-New York City were hit and damage to these points was considerable. It was clear Lower-New York City had also been mapped out by the Martians and as with London, the surface areas above Committee Command and Control Centers were hit very hard leaving not one structure left standing above these critical points. Destruction in these areas had been complete. Those surfaces were now covered with glowing black glass! (This combination of melted building materials mixed with melted rock and soil would later be called ‘Martianite.) In several areas images of people sired into nearby walls, streets and large rocks were scattered about like ghosts. All that remained were the shadows. In some areas one could count hundreds of these reminders of people who had once called these areas home.

One difference was noted when no Black Smoke canisters were dropped on the city. It was thought that the weather may have played a part in that decision.

NEW WASHINGTON CENTER

When the Americans rebuilt their capital after the First Martian War government officials (re: Teddy) quickly decided to rebuild most major federal buildings on their original sites but only as structural facades. None of the buildings including the Supreme Court, the Houses of Congress, and much of the White House and many more were in fact not real inhabited structures. All of the working offices of government were built deep underground. They had been interconnected by a vast network of reinforced tunnels which included roads and rail lines. President Roosevelt had insisted that at the very least the President’s Oval Office would be built above ground to “demonstrate a connection to the people”. (There was of course another much larger office for the President well protected underground.) All other working and living areas of the White House were underground reachable by several stairways and elevators including one very large one which could accommodate at least two cars at the same time.

When compared to other above ground cities around the world New Washington Center had the fewest actual real above ground government buildings than anywhere else. It was indeed a false city of the people. Many of these false buildings however took advantage of this fact and did have anti-aircraft units, rocket platforms and Heat-Ray weapons hidden inside. Locally New Washington Center was known as the ‘Hollow City’. Hollow or not when the Martians flew by they were greeted with a tremendous welcome of defensive weapons not to be outdone anywhere. The Americans were determined to defend their ‘Capital’ even if most of its surface construction was a false one. As with most governmental faces there was much to be found under its wide surface streets and false fronts.

Rocket fired at incoming Martian craft from rocket platform

The attack on New Washington Center came from the east flying out of a huge bank of black clouds which had hidden the Martian force nearly to the edge of the city. The intensity of the energy discharges of these storms was playing hell with our radars. The storm would hit the city at almost the same time as the Martians. The fact the Martians used the storm as cover indicated they knew they needed it. It also meant our air attacks were having an effect they had perhaps not expected. Every available fighter the Americans could field in the area was in on the fight.

APOLLO FLASH: TO ALL COMMANDS: MARTIANS NOW USING STORM FRONTS AS COVER – EARTH AIR ATTACKS APPEAR TO BE EFFECTIVE – CONTINUE AIR OPS IN MASS AS MUCH AS FEASIBLE – CONTINUE TO WEAR THEM DOWN.

Coming in from medium altitude the Martians sent in six waves all of which dropped hundreds of Black Smoke canisters and dozens of seismic devices, while their Heat-Rays were used to clear a path in the air for their flying machines. It was noted this was the first time in the air war they had used their deadly rays as cover rather than attack.

On the ground defense forces were firing volley after volley of solid rocket and anti-aircraft fire at the passing Martians but most of our Tesla Heat-Rays focused on burning pathways through the thick black smoke being laid down by the enemy. The Martians had not yet flown low enough for effective use of our Heat-Rays or high intensity lights against their aircraft. The Americans however were taking out a few of their flyers with intensive ground fire.

In the air both Phoenix IIs and Thunder Jets were engaging enemy aircraft in what can only be described as an all out effort to attack and destroy as many of the 200 Martian Flying Machines as they could. This was a massed dog fight at low, medium and high altitudes which was keeping most, but not all, of the Martians busy and thus many were unable to focus on attacking the city. After only fifteen minutes a second wave of fighters was able to join the battle over New Washington Center but these were not Martian machines these were American fighters coming off the USS Lexington, USS Concord and the USS Philadelphia numbering 53 first line Phoenix II fighters. They too had come in out of the Atlantic storm front now beginning to hit the city with sleet and torrential rains. This time however, the Martians, paying close attention to the aircraft already engaged, did not see them coming as the Americans flew directly at the massed fighters at two levels downing an incredible ten Martian Flying Machines in the first two minutes engaging the enemy with new air-to-air missiles, pin point Heat-Rays and machine-gun fire. One pilot yelled over the radio that “the Martians are dropping like flies. Keep going. Hit the squid bastards as hard as you can.”

Seeing the new air action anti-aircraft batteries stopped firing at higher altitudes to lessen the odds of hitting one of our own aircraft. However, they did continue firing on numbers of low flying Martians several of which were still making Heat-Ray and seismic runs on the city. Fighting for only fifteen minutes longer with only moderate damage to the city the Martians broke off the fight and headed north. For the first time in the war the Martians had actually been forced to disengage and retreat from an air battle! In total they lost 43 of their flying machines with several more limping away trailing black smoke. Our forces lost 19 Phoenix IIs and 39 Thunder Jets. As the Martians headed north every available Phoenix II in the area went up to meet them causing the loss of six more of our aircraft but costing the Martians eight more of their machines. (Most of these had been damaged during the attack on Washington and were picked off as the Americans and Canadians attacked the stream of Martian Flying Machines heading towards the Arctic ice fields.) It had been costly but the Americans had finally won a hard fought air battle! More over they had prevented the city from being widely damaged along with what would have been a great loss of life. It would however be a short lived victory as the Martians would soon return.

SYDNEY

By the time 300 Martian Flying Machines were in position to attack Sydney from the air, Martian ground forces had fought their way north and were stationed just outside our Southern Command Center. This would be the first time such a massive enemy air force had attacked a fortified city while at the same time attacking with strong ground forces. This would be a determined well supplied and well armed attack.

When word came that such a large number of Martian Flying Machines were headed for Sydney flash orders were sent out by ‘Titan’ calling in every available fighter within a 100 mile radius to converge on the city. Expecting to receive this titanic blow ‘Whisky Drinker’ pulled his armored Command Rail Car into Lower-Sydney. He had been stationed just outside the city in an area now in the ‘hands’ of the Martians. Titan had sent out an earlier VLF message to Triton onboard the submarine CS Pacific requesting additional missile firing submarines to come to the aid of Sydney. Fifteen submarines were soon on their way to take positions off shore. Titan had also sent an urgent flash message to the commander of the southern Pacific fleet for battleships and aircraft carrier support. Titan was informed four battleships had already been sent steaming his way for several days in anticipation of an attack on Sydney based upon earlier radar landing data and the attack on Melbourne. Six aircraft carriers were also steaming his way and their jets and Phoenix IIs would be available for action over the city in less than eight hours.

Responding to requests Brisbane, located just north of the city, sent in fifteen Phoenix IIs which represented nearly half of their compliment of advanced fighters. The government of New Zealand out of Auckland sent in four cruisers and a medium size aircraft carrier the RNZ Nelson. They were also prepared to send in a bomber wing of 48 aircraft if an appropriate target could be designated by Titan. Just as the first Martian flew over Sydney the sky became clear for the first time in days.

In series the Martians came at Sydney on the ground from three directions with large Walkers leading the way. These were followed by medium sized Walkers who were themselves followed by Martian B combat forces riding for the first time in what must be called armored troop carriers, but these were on tracks not wheels. All of these elements came straight in firing Heat-Rays as forward cover and releasing thick greasy Black Smoke. Low flying Martians covering the assault swept in front of the Walkers pumping Heat-Rays into the ground which set off several but not all of our mines. Some were deeply buried and could not be detonated in this manner. At the edge of the first mine fields the large Walkers stopped and as one rose into the air and began pouring fire into the mine fields and beyond. Behind this wall of fire the armored Martians simply drove into the field. Dozens of these armored vehicles sacrificed themselves exploding into the air as they came into contact with the mines. As far as equipment and ‘manpower’ were concerned this was a very expensive way to attack a heavily defended mine field. It was clear the Martians could not have cared less. Despite their losses the murderous hordes of Martians continued to advance. The Martians clearly understood the value of Sydney.

The Martians were detonating lanes in the field which would allow the smaller Walkers, follow up armor and Martian B infantry to move towards the city. As the fields erupted with explosives the large Walkers once again pulled their legs up and coasted over the field. This time however the Aussies were ready. Using Melbourne as an example the Australians deployed tanks, artillery and Heat-Rays into large teams (combat packages) behind the mine fields ready to pour fire on the large Walkers as they passed over the mines. The moving wall of 57 large Walkers was met with a massive volley of fire from the 450 Aussie guns. The fire was so thick at times the air appeared to turn gray as Walker after Walker took hit after hit. Even then it would take several direct hits to even stop a Walker let alone destroy one. These were very well armored machines. To be sure they were the kings of the battlefield but they were by no means invincible. It was estimated Aussie gunners fired at least 20,000 rounds at the advancing Heat-Ray firing enemy. In the “Battle for the Mine Fields” the Martians would eventually lose 39 large Walkers before they were able to fire point blank on the Australian gun crews. When the Australians were finally forced to retreat the enemy was still moving forward but at a decidedly slower pace having left an additional 4500 Martian Bs, several dozen armored vehicles and at least 27 smaller Walkers on the field. There was no time to celebrate – the Martians had fought their way inside Upper-Sydney!

Committee battleship firing on Martian positions

Attacking from the north and south of the city the Martians entered the western edge of Sydney. Destroyers and cruisers, which had steamed full ahead to the aid of Sydney, began firing from their off shore positions on the Martians. As the battleships arrived off the coast they immediately began firing directly over the city on to Martian forces moving in a deep line from the west. The Martians would lose 26 flyers over Sydney and many more Walkers on this day. The battle for Sydney had begun and would continue for days as bombing and strafing runs from both Australian and New Zealand air forces pressed hard as the ground fighters continued to press hard on the Martians.

TITAN FLASH: TO ALL COMMANDS: MARTIANS NOW FIELDING SMALL AND MEDIUM SIZED TRACKED ARMORED VEHICLES FOR TROOP TRANSPORT – HAVE HEAT-RAYS – TRACKS VULNERABLE.

THE MARTIANS CONTINUE TO ADVANCE

With essential close in air support Martian ground forces continued to press forward on all fronts. They had made their way south from their Scottish landing zones all the way to Edinburgh where Scottish regiments met them with heavy tank and artillery fire holding a line backed by mostly prop-driven fighters for a few hours until a wave of medium and large Walkers simply walked over their own dead to push the determined Scots back to a line formed ten miles south of Edinburgh. There they linked up with a re-enforced British army group posed to slam into the Martians. It was at this line that thousands of lightly armed Scots, mostly civilians, would wait for the machines to pass over their positions before coming up to engage the first wave of Martian B foot soldiers in bloody hand-to-hand combat. 1200 Scots under their colors flying and with the pipes calling threw themselves at the heavily armed Martians. This two hour “Battle for the Pastures” would go down in Scottish history. When it was all over no more than fifty Scots were able to walk off the field. The Martians however had lost at least 2500 of their own. By the end of the day the Scottish flag still held the ground even though they were now completely cut off from other Earth forces. They had not given up a single yard of the ‘Pasture’. After the war the proudest boast heard from a Scot was “I fought at the Pastures.”

Aftermath of the “Battle for the Pastures”

By this time most of Sweden was now Martian occupied territory as the Martians pressed west into Norway but not before the Swedish Navy pounded Martian ground forces with gunfire off of Sundsvall. The redoubtable Swedes would continue the fight with guerrilla warfare aided by Tango Special Forces troops who had landed by submarine along their west coast. Their task was to organize local stay-behind units and with these units attack and destroy any supporting Martian rear forces. In other words, kill as many Martian Bs as they could find. The Bs were the weak link in the Martian chain even though they were still tough fighters.

From their landings in Russia the Martians had pushed in every direction towards Kotlas, Perm, Yaroslavl, Ryazan, and soon on to the outskirts of Moscow. Stalin would not be just waiting. From Moscow he sent out ten divisions of armor and infantry to attack the first line of Martian machines. Many of these forces did not make it back to the city but they took many Martians with them and did slow the Martian advance. Few cable reports were coming out of Russia from any area. Without up to date information it would be difficult to send Committee forces into the area to help any Russian efforts. Cable lines however were still operational. Several urgent messages were sent requesting updates from ‘Vodka Drinker’.

Along a line from Kamloops in the west to Hearst in the east the Martians held a wide plain of Canada preparing to move south into the United States. The ruins of Moose Jaw, Regina and Winnipeg were now Martian controlled areas. Specially trained cold weather troops, mostly tough well equipped Eskimos, had been held back in order to spearhead stay behind operations. Now was the time to attack. They would search out and destroy supply depots and “any stray Martians we can find”.

From Cairo the Martians had swept into Libya west and south into northern Sudan. The north end of the Nile was now held by the Martians. They patrolled the river with small patrol craft armed with mounted Heat-Rays.

In the south of Africa the enemy was moving north on a line from Walvis Bay on the west coast to Mbabane on the east, cutting through Mafeking driving deep into their secondary lines of defense. Our facility at Johannesburg had gone radio silent. Nothing more was coming through even on secure cable. We should have been able to keep in contact with our Underground Military Base MB5 code named ‘Epsilon’ at Johannesburg. We would continue to monitor their frequencies. So far nothing was stopping Martian advances in southern Africa as they continued to push north. There was very little in the way of combat forces in the area to stop them or even slow them down. The Martians were picking their spots attacking one area and leaving others untouched. They seemed to have a clear idea of where our communications and power facilities were to be found. They had mapped out exactly when and where they needed to attack for the greatest effect. They were not wasting any efforts in this war as they passed up areas less developed than others.

On the tip of South America the Martian front had spread from Concepcion on the west coast across to Bahia Blanca on the east. South of this line came the first reports of humans being taken for food. Disturbing reports were now coming in from Africa and Asia as well that the Martians had begun gathering people up and herding them into enclosures. We knew they would be using these people to feed on and there was little to be done. Stay-behind forces were ordered to do what they could. Waves of terrified people running for their lives from the deadly Black Smoke and frightful Heat-Rays became the norm in front of every line of Martian advance. Heavy snow was reported.

New landings were reported in Brazil just north of Rio de Janeiro, south of Cali Columbia, south of Casablanca Morocco and Derby Australia. Not unexpectedly due to ongoing air battles in other areas air cover by the Martians over these new landings was reported as light. They were all met with air and ground attacks by local forces within two hours of each of these landings. Casualties inflicted upon our first units to attack these new landing zones were once again very heavy. It was not long before regular combat units would take over the task of battling these newly landed enemy forces.

By this time we were receiving some very disturbing reports on the organization of Martian ground forces. Difficult as it was to believe it was possible that humans, breed on Mars, had come as part of the invasion army and were now fighting alongside the Martians (Martian humans). We would soon have proof they were being used as decoys as well as guards for the Martians in their camps. When these reports were verified radio instructions were sent out to stay-behind-forces to attempt to capture any full humans fighting for the Martians. We needed to interrogate some of these people. What they could tell us about Martians would be invaluable.

South east of Cali Columbia

Ham Radio report WP6AZ (unconfirmed): Several large Martian airships have landed and are sending out their Walkers and thousands of combat troops. Some of the troops appear to be human but I can’t be sure. Many small Walkers are moving with them. Whiskey Papa 6 Alpha Zulu – out.

Taking note on how the Martians were fighting it was clear our forces had gotten their attention. More and more the Martians were turning their efforts away from attacking the Earth. Their major focus on this seventh day of combat was now directed towards the humans who were making it decidedly difficult for them to obtain their many objectives. Whatever the Martians may have learned from combat with humans so far in the war it must have been clear to them that Earth forces were not about to surrender in any area no matter the cost and Martian losses to their flying machines as well as ground forces were going to be considerable. My thoughts were they probably understood human determination to fight at all costs since they seemed to have the same determination. They should have known this since the massive self-destruction during the Great Earth War which they had closely watched.

By preliminary count our forces world-wide had brought down at least 817 of their powerful front line combat flying machines. We estimated they still had around 900 more in the fight (some 53%). Even with these losses the enemy still fielded thousands of Walkers and supporting equipment and a great many ground combat forces and at no point in contact with Martian forces was the enemy being pushed back. It was clear we were wearing them down and they were slowing their advances at many locations but we were not winning at any point on Earth – at least not yet! Our costs in lives and equipment was still very high.

This day also brought news that some of the medium Walkers (perhaps all) were capable of floating across rivers and lakes. They could not float over great distances such as large lakes or oceans, but they did have even more formidable capabilities than the last time we had seen them in combat back in ’01. The Martians had spent the time between war improving their war fighting machines.

Martian primary attacks and occupied territories – 8 September 1938

Mars Radio Traps MRT-9 AND MRT-10 in Kotlas and Sunton Russia had both gone off and had taken one each Martian Flying Machine with them. By this late date I was surprised these traps were still effective. The single minded Martians did not yet seem to understand these traps. Here was proof once again the Martians were not super beings just damned well armed with a far superior technology than man.

How they could have developed that high level of technology we still could not figure out. Even if they had not developed their weapons themselves it was very clear they certainly knew how to use them. But if they had not developed them how did they acquire such destructive devices and from who? These were questions for a later time – if we were indeed lucky enough to have that privilege.

[END PART 65]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[NEXT WEEK: PART 66: ARCTIC NORTH AND THE UNITED STATES BORDER ATTACKS.]

 

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-64)

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[PART 64]

DAY FIVE: 6 September 1938

The Third Wave – The Ground War Begins

 

“The air was full of sound, a deafening and confusing conflict of noises – the clamorous din of the Martians,
the crash of falling houses, the thud of trees, fences, sheds flashing into flame, and the crackling and roaring of fire.”
Eyewitness report on Ham Radio

 

As air attacks began to trail off operational world-wide radars noted a considerable drop in the number of Martian Flying Machines dropping out of orbit. It seemed for the most part the Martians had deployed all of the ground and air support forces they felt they needed to begin ground combat operations. The most destructive part of their “war of the worlds” was about to begin. They would pick their spots very carefully taking full advantage of weather and limited air cover. Very soon they would establish strong footholds in several starting points on Earth.

APOLLO FLASH: TO ALL COMMANDS: “RED SOIL” – ENEMY GROUND ATTACKS IMMINENT – BLOODY THE BASTARDS – GOOD LUCK AND GOOD HUNTING.

Despite the loss of several polar radar sites (north and south) we saw them coming. From both poles the Martians came out of the high ice in three waves in multiple diamond formations, just as one would expect based on past Martian history. The grand Martian strategy to take the surface of the Earth had begun. The first wave of machines flew at high altitude expected to work as high cover, flight control and reconnaissance. The second wave flew in at mid-level expected to engage any of our Earth air forces with the third wave flying in low and fast to land ground combat troops and weapons to begin the ground war. Every operational fighter we had went up to meet them, as well as many not really combat ready including several new ones right from the assembly lines. Our as yet unused bomber fleets were now put on 100% ready standby to bomb in mass any Martian ground concentrations they could get to.

From the South Pole the enemy attacked north in three formations landing ground forces at Cape Town South Africa, Puerto Natales, Chile and just west of Melbourne, Australia near Ballarat. (The landing at Puerto Natales was practically on top of one of our major Grain Storage Facilities G3 code named ‘Earth’.)

From the north the Martians flew south landing in an ice covered field just outside of Winnipeg, Canada, by a lake just north of Harbin, Manchuria and west of Stockholm, Sweden. Starting from these points the Martians moved out along the cardinal points in massive fan-shaped formations. I remember thinking at the time it seemed a bit odd the Martians would advance their ground attacks along primary magnetic points of the compass rather than follow geologic ground contours since the local magnetic fields on Mars are not global and were thus useless for compass navigation on their home world. However, considering how long the Martians had been on Earth the odds were they were just as good at Earth navigation as we are and probably much better. It is funny what one thinks of in times of great stress.

Out of polar orbit the Martians pounded the general area with Heat-Rays and landed a large force on top of the Giza Plateau quickly securing a five mile radius centered on the pyramids. The Martians had set up their “Central Terrain Command Center” at the same location they had favored thousands of years earlier. The Martians had come home! Landings were also made inside the MLZ, CLZ and SLZ. (They must have realized the significance of these areas.) However, due to our lack of radars and spotter coverage in these hostile areas it was difficult for us to estimate just how powerful these landings had been. We needed data that we simply did not have.

In most other areas spotters reported a very fast buildup of ground forces with Martian Walkers quickly moving out from their landing zones within minutes. At no point did it take the Martians longer than 30 minutes to begin moving with Walker operations. This was verification they had vastly improved their Walker capabilities. We also discovered they had brought to Earth three different types of Walkers. We called them small, medium and large. These deadly machines would spearhead their ground attacks. The medium sized Walkers closely resembled the ‘two-Martianed’ machines we had fought during the First Martian War. These had been improved as they no longer had open cowls and were a good deal faster. (The Tango sniper teams would be disappointed.) The smaller single occupant Martian Walkers were about the size of the ones we had found buried at Giza and Cairo at around ten feet tall only these were much better built. We knew at once these machines could easily be used to enter and attack our underground facilities. The large Walkers were on the order of 35 feet in height and were truly powerful machines. These giant monsters held a team of five Martians and would prove to be the most deadly machines on the battle field in the days and weeks to come. All three models had Heat-Rays and all but the small Walkers were able to dispense Black Smoke which considering where they were likely to be deployed seemed a tactical error on the part of the Martians. One of my aids was quick to point out that “they had blown that one.” I was not so sure. From these landings the enemy would continue to re-enforce over the next few days.

We soon learned as the large Walkers moved these machines projected wide magnetic fields which disrupted local energy sources as well as local wireless transmissions. As they conquered territory devices left in their wake blocked all wireless for miles around.

Inside the Mexican Lawless Zone (MLZ)

Ham Radio report (no call sign) (unconfirmed): The Martians have landed all over Matamoros. Hundreds of them are walking around and firing death rays at just about… (Transmission ends)

It was not long before contact with the enemy was made. At many of these landing areas the first troops to engage the enemy were local reserve forces backed by well armed police units. For the most part they suffered heavy losses with some noted exceptions. However, at no point during these first ground battles did any unit back down. They fought with great courage and determination well beyond what could be expected of part-time soldiers.

Fighting at Cape Town

It did not take long for regular pre-positioned combat units to engage the enemy with combined infantry, armor and artillery units supported by fighter/bombers. There was no single line of these first Martian advances not fully engaged in intense fighting by Committee or national forces within two hours of their arrival. The landings at Cape Town, Winnipeg and Melbourne also afforded our bombers the first opportunity to finally get into the fight.

THE FIRST BOMBER ATTACKS

It was time to carry the air war to the enemy. At Cape Town over 150 first line Whitehead B4 jet bombers attacked the landing zones approaching from two directions with jet fighters leading the way. The same tactic was used over the Winnipeg landing zones only the bombers came in from the west in one massive triple “V” formation of 400 bombers beginning their approach near treetop level before climbing to bomb altitude. These bombers were led by Thunder Jet fighters but only after a first wave of jet fighters came screaming into the area from the east in order to deflect some of the Martian Flying Machines in position to cover their landing forces.

At Melbourne fighters from the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) once again swept in, followed by the bombers. After the attack a second wave of fighters swept the area to cover the retreating bombers. Phoenix IIs stationed in Melbourne soon followed going after the Martian Flying Machines flying high cover. During these three missions alone we lost 218 bombers and their crews with first reports indicating only moderate damage to Martian ground forces. Our bomber fleets had bloodied the Martians first landings but it had been a very costly affair – too costly. If we were to succeed we needed to take a close look at our bombing tactics. The Martians had limited our effectiveness by heavy air cover, ground to air Heat-Rays and quickly dispersing and moving out from their landing zones making it difficult to locate and destroy concentrated targets.

At the same time the Chinese Air Force began their attacks on Martian ground forces not with bombers but with jet fighter-bombers coming in at tree top level and dropping fire bombs mixed with high explosive bombs on the assembling Martians. The jets flew in waves from three directions in sets of twelve jets in each wave. For the most part they simply ignored the high flying machines and pounded the targets on the ground. As air reports came in I was amazed at just how fast our forces engaged the enemy. In 1901 it had taken many hours, even days. This time our response to meet the Martians on the ground came in a few hours and at times only minutes! The Chinese units had been most ready and had engaged the Martians faster than any other force. They must have caught the Martians off guard as their attacks were also the most effective of the day. They proved we had to hit the Martians fast or lose the initiative. Even then it was still a close thing as well as a costly one. The Chinese Air Force lost 25% of their fighters who engaged that invading force on the first day. Ground based mobile Heat-Rays had also taken their toll on the Chinese both in the air and on the ground.

Two hours after the first ground forces landed the second wave of enemy Walkers and supporting elements landed at nearby locations in positions to reinforce and fortify the first group of landings. The ever efficient and fast moving Martians were not wasting any time.

At all three northern landing zones the Martians deployed new ground forces north, east and west of their original landing sites. Near the southern landing zones the Martians deployed supporting forces east, west and north of their Melbourne landing, north and east of their Puerto Natales landing and north and east of their landings at Cape Town. These units pressed forward rapidly finding light resistance where they had landed. It would not take long for these additional Martian ground forces to link up and begin joint operations. Earth forces were soon in desperate battles with most of these new enemy units retreating as slowly as they could.

As for the Giza area the Martians simply began building up their strength in the general area from orbit moving out from Giza east, west, and south. Clearly this was to be their equatorial strong hold. It would soon expand to ten miles in diameter. Towards the east they attacked Cairo and overran the north end of the Suez Canal. It would be at Suez the Egyptian military showed their toughest metal. With their backs to the wall wave after wave of infantry and armor units flung themselves at the Martians who at one point were actually forced to pull back due to massed Egyptian artillery. This was ‘home ground’ for both combatants and no quarter was to be given on either side. The ten Earth built Walkers were reported to have done well in point combat against the Martians at Cairo. The fact we had re-built some of the Martian machines seemed to come as a surprise to the enemy.

During the final attack of the day Egyptian commandos actually climbed on to several large Martian Walkers to plant explosive charges. One commando was able to find a small opening in the side of one machine and pumped machine gun rounds into the Walker until he was cut down by Martian fire. Several of these metal monsters were felled before the Martians were forced to turn their Heat-Rays on themselves to “wash” off the very determined Egyptians. It was reported that in the middle of the night a team of Jewish fighters known as the ‘Knights of David’ had made their way to the Martian command area killing several local Martian commanders. The ‘Knights’ had gone down in Jewish history!

By dawn the next day the Suez was in the ‘hands’ of the Martians as the Egyptian force who battled them in hand-to-hand combat had lost 97% of their attacking force. The Suez washed red that day with the blood of thousands of Egyptians and the bodies of hundreds of dead Martians as the “Lost Army” went into Egyptian history books. Later, Egyptian medals awarded for the highest courage against an enemy force would be named the “Red Cross of Suez.” Six were awarded to surviving members of the Lost Army for their efforts on that day. One was awarded to the “unknown Egyptian who represented all members of the Lost Army.”

Committee and Egyptian Infantry attack Martians

At Alexander, Egypt our Committee Secret Service Communication Center Com 10 reported the area was now fully Martian occupied. This underground facility however, was still operational. For how long was anyone’s guess. I recall it was at Alexander we found the first meteorite on Earth known to have come from Mars. One staff member suggested “they were back to re-claim their rock.”

Despite all of the air-power Earth forces could deploy and despite every point on Earth where Martian forces had landed being counter-attacked, at no point along any of these lines of attack could our forces stop the Martians for any length of time. They were gaining ground with great speed as they fought day and night without pause. Defensive lines were collapsing fast. The best any of our ground forces could do at this time was slow them down, yet no matter what we did nothing was stopping them as the cost in lives and equipment continued to climb.

The crush of civilians massed along the roads away from these areas made it difficult to re-enforce our front line units in many areas. We would make few efforts to control the uncontrollable civilian masses as we continued to engage enemy forces. Killing the enemy had to hold the high ground of that discourse.

North east of Melbourne

Ham Radio report UVF18 (unconfirmed): After the Martians landed their cylinders, dozens of small walkers scattered out of the larger machine like a pack of wolves. Groups of three form a triangle and begin to… (Transmission ends)

GROUND ATTACKS CONTINUE

At first glance the Martians appeared to indiscriminately kill anything that moved across their line of sight, both man and beast, but this made no logical sense as it would tend to sap a good deal of their combat strength and time to do so. With this in mind we set about to discover their combat tactical pattern which soon came to light. They were indeed killing everyone and everything in the areas they landed but as they organized themselves and moved out from their landing zones they focused on man-made infrastructure such as power lines and electrical generating plants, communication facilities as well as any medium or large population centers in their path attempting to choke them off. Clearly these attacks spoke to the Martians attempting to isolate and thus control large populations wherever they went. Firing on random humans would pass to specific targets. Their movements indicated they were setting up an interlocking grid pattern of forces controlling surface grid lines with ground forces while leaving the centers of the grid relatively untouched – at least for the preliminary operation. That way they could cover a great deal of ground in a short period of time. It also meant we would have plenty of room to hit them with our stay behind forces and hopefully do some real damage in the wake of their passing primary attacks.

German troops leave defensive positions to attack Martian ground forces

Past wars had brought enemy administration to occupied territory. Not so with the Martians. They were not interested in such mundane matters. Death and total destruction were their only goals. In this war of annihilation mankind was not to be ‘managed’ it was to be destroyed as time and material would permit. Many of their rear forces which consist largely of hybrids and Martian Bs would get the job. The Martian Bs and hybrids were there to do the clean-up. The Martians As considered them to be nothing more than cannon fodder. We planned to oblige them. These areas would see some of the bloodiest close-in hand-to-hand fighting of the war.

Inside Stockholm, Sweden

Ham Radio report SW61V (unconfirmed): Stockholm is under brutal attack by dozens of Martian machines. The military is powerless to stop them. Black Smoke is everywhere. The population is being slaughtered by the tens of thousands. You must send critical re-enforcement. Most of the city is burning. Everything is being destroyed. Nothing stops… (Transmission ends)

Stockholm was the first major population center to come under sustained Martian ground attack. They had earlier sustained the weight of both aerial Heat-Ray and seismic attacks which were now followed by several waves of medium sized Martian Walkers trailed by squads of Martian Bs and hybrids. They also covered their forces with several Martian Flying Machines. Hitting the city from the west the Martians slammed into the cities’ outer trenches and for a few minutes were halted by ignited black tar pits and Walker Traps which reportedly caught the Martians by surprise. Several of their machines fell victim to these traps which allowed military forces the opportunity to pour artillery and tank fire on the temporarily halted enemy. Several of the Walkers were hit and destroyed. However, the Martians continued on simply walking directly on top of their fallen comrades to continue their advance on the city. As they moved thick greasy Black Smoke began to pour from their forward machines. This was answered by Martian Gas Traps and thousands of fire pits being ignited which burned a good deal of the deadly Martian smoke but it was simply not enough. Building by building and street by street the Martians continued to advance seemingly contented to destroy any man-made structure they could see. Once again it would be reported that killing humans appeared to be a secondary target. Even as tens of thousands were being slaughtered, focus remained on the city itself. But only until that work was complete.

Stockholm

Within hours any recognizable section of Stockholm had vanished beneath the metal feet of the advancing Martians as they pushed all the way to the sea where tens of thousands of terrified people perished like rats dropping into the ocean attempting to flee the deadly Heat-Rays. This was not war, this was murder. It would not be long before Copenhagen, Oslo and Goteborg met a similar fate.

Not long after the battle for Stockholm began halfway around the world the Martians imitated their assault on Melbourne in Australia. Moving east and north east from their landing zones the Martians struck Melbourne defense lines along three points five miles wide. As bombers, fighter/bombers and Phoenix IIs sent in from Sydney continued to attack the Martians, both large and medium sized Walkers moved forward to make contact with the outer edges of the city. Firing their Heat-Rays in the direction of movement the Martians walked on what might best be called the world’s most powerful minefields. Unknown even to the Committee outside of Sydney to insure absolute secrecy the Australians had planted a 200 yard wide closely packed set of mines north, east and west of the Melbourne as well as around all of their major population centers. Many other cities around the world had minefields but none could come close to the ones which were set into three interconnected rings around Australian cities. These ‘green circular city parks’ as seen from above were death traps and the Aussies were about to show some of their best work to the advancing Martians. Fully three lines of Walkers, 70% of which were medium sized, had entered the ‘fields’ when three miles of these fields were exploded by cable controls. The effect was devastating. The explosion sent a shock wave over Melbourne which broke widows four miles away. (At least the few that still existed.) It also sent dozens of Martian machines along with the Martians flying into the air, many in different directions at the same time as they were ripped apart by the truly massive blasts.

As the smoke was clearing observers noted the Martians had stopped dead in their tracks as a deep silence commanded the ravaged field now covered with large trenches and dead Martians. For a full two minutes none of the machines left standing, most of which had yet to enter the minefield, made any movement. The Martians had taken their pause. Australian tanks and artillery now opened up a massive volley of fire. Then as one the medium sized Walkers began to turn and move north away from the field seemingly looking for an easier path to advance on the city. Not so for the large Walkers. They pulled their own trick out of the hat. Each of the large Walkers on the forward line simply pulled their legs up and began to hover in place. This was the first time we understood that these monsters could fly. They had not been able to fly Walkers in 1901 thus once again they had improved these machines.

Firing their Heat-Rays the Martians seemed to float over the fields with an easy grace setting down well beyond the edge of the deadly field prepared to continue their attack on Melbourne. The Australians estimated that during the mine field detonation they had destroyed at least 400 medium sized Walkers. This was the largest single loss imparted on the Martians by any combat force on Earth during the entire war. This amounted to around 15% of the Martian ground forces attacking the city at the time. The remaining enemy forces would not go down as easy and neither would Melbourne. There were few sections of Melbourne taken by the Martians which did not cost them heavily. It would be during the height of the fighting for the city that the Committee decided to dynamite seal the entrance tunnels to the Grain Storage Facility G4 at Melbourne code named ‘Mars’. The Martians would eventually take Melbourne but they did not take G4. Sydney’s turn would come next as the Aussies continued to make them pay dearly for every bloody inch of Australian soil.

Lower-Melbourne, Australia

Secure cable report to Sydney Committee Headquarters: LARGE MARTIAN WALKERS CAPABLE OF SHORT DISTANCE FLIGHT AT LOW ALTITUDES – MINE FIELD OPERATIONS SUCCESSFUL – ATTACKS ON CITY CONTINUE – HEAVY FIGHTING CONTINUES – BLACK SMOKE DEPLOYED – LOSSES MODERATE – MARS SEALED – GOD SAVE THE KING.

This information about the newly discovered flight capabilities of the large Walkers was immediately sent to all commands. Adjustments in defensive operations were once again required. The Martians were proving to be even more adaptable than we had anticipated. What we learned next out of Cape Town was even more disturbing. The Martians had brought small boats with them!

The fighting in and around Cape Town had been bloody and fierce but it did not last long once the beachheads had been established and strengthened. It had taken only hours for the Martians to overrun much of the southern African area from Cape Town to Worcester, Port Elizabeth to East London and Beaufort West. The Martian ground forces had swept a wide area with tremendous speed and brutality crushing everything in their path.

It was the final flash report from forces engaged in the fight that informed the Committee the Martians had deployed what amounted to small patrol boats around both Cape Town and Port Elizabeth. We had also lost our Sea Cave Facility, Blue 10 outside Cape Town which was now occupied by Martian water craft. Another new dimension had been added to the war. It was one we had anticipated but had not really expected to see.

POSEIDON VLF RADIO MESSAGE: TO ALL ATLANTIC SUBS (RELAYED TO APOLLO): MARTIANS HAVE WATER PATROL CRAFT OFF COAST OF SOUTHERN AFRICA – BE PREPARED TO ENGAGE AND DESTROY AT WILL – SEA CAVE FACILITY B10 OCCUPIED BY ENEMY FORCES.

The first reliable report we received at our London Committee Headquarter concerning conditions in and around the SLZ came from a Tango operative team who had managed to land on the northern coast by special submarine and set up an observation station. They were able to report that the Martians had set up a water operation center just west of Bargal. This gave the Martians effective control of the Gulf of Aden, the Red Sea all the way north to Cairo and the Suez Canal. The Red Sea was now in fact an enemy controlled “Red Sea.” Within days the SLZ would effectively be a Martian controlled area.

We still did not have any reliable information coming out of either the MLZ or the CLZ. The Americans would soon send people into the MLZ seeking just such information. What they discovered would shock them to the core. What they discovered would amount to planetary treason on a vast scale.

By the end of the day we received word that the Committee Space Launch Center at Cape Canaveral in Florida had been attacked by air and for the most part had been wiped off the map. The force which attacked this facility was well beyond what was needed to destroy it. The Martians really wanted complete destruction of the site. This was an emotional response from the enemy we would not have expected. Melted structures and burning debris was all that remained of the facility which had launched Defense 1. We had lost our capability – at least for the foreseeable future – to place satellites into Earth orbit. We also received confirmation our base at Thule had been completely destroyed.

When the dust began to settle (metaphorically speaking) by the end of the fifth day of war the Martians had lost a total of at least 620 flyers, but they held the high ground of orbital space and both poles. They had command of a dozen areas on Earth their ground forces had managed to rip from the people who had called these places home for thousands of years. They had destroyed several cities and were on the march in several areas. On our side Earth forces were fighting with every weapon we could bring to bear – and we were being pushed back along all fronts. Yet when compared with the speed of their ground attacks at this point during the 1901 war these Martians were in fact moving a good deal slower. Perhaps it was with planned deliberation they moved with caution after all they must have known they faced a much better prepared enemy than had been faced in 1901. We were much better armed than we were in 1901 but so were they. However, at the time I could not see how it could be due to most of our combat efforts as we engaged their front line machines and sustained great losses of men and equipment. It was later felt they were slower because they were coordinating attacks on a much wider front than in 1901 and it was over many more areas at the same time than we had seen in the early days of the First Martian War. They were in fact gaining more ground by this time in 1901 because they were attacking so many moiré areas simultaneously.

DAY SIX: 7 September 1938

Continuing their air operations this day saw the Martians dropping Black Smoke canisters on several populated areas focusing on Western Europe and the United States even though they had yet to land large ground forces in most of these areas. This was the first time the Martians had dropped Black Smoke on any location from the air. All previous Black Smoke attacks (including all such attacks during the First Martian War) had been deployed by ground forces pumped out by the Walkers. Once again the Martians had adapted new tactics.

These attacks seemed almost as a test of their effectiveness as they were not distributed over large areas nor did they use this new method to attack more than two dozen cities all of which held medium sized populations such as San Diego, California and Bournemouth, England. This also meant that they were not as well defended as larger cities and thus much safer to bomb. I could only guess, but I imagined from the Martian’s point of view these attacks were not wholly successful as the rains brought on by their attacks on our atmosphere and their fire causing Heat-Ray attacks on our surface structures destroyed a good deal of the effectiveness of these Black Smoke canister bombings. It should also be noted that when these canisters were used on larger population centers which were defended with our own Heat-Ray devices we were able to incinerate much of the low flowing greasy smoke which came into range of our Heat-Rays. Once again we had proof we could, under the correct conditions, defeat one of their most effective weapons they had used against our planet in 1901. We had learned a few new tricks of our own and we were learning more on the run. As for our stockpiles of mustard gas all Committee commands were now authorized to use the deadly gas at their discretion. The Martian attacks had taken the gloves off our own use of this type of warfare.

Wire photo sent from Central China

YELLOWSTONE SUPER VOLCANO

Although noted mostly for advancing Martian ground forces consolidating and continuing their attacks from their landing zones this day did see at least one major attack on the planet itself. (Several smaller areas also saw geologic attacks.) That major planetary attack point focused on Yellowstone National Park in the American state of Wyoming. Long known as a geologic hot spot the entire area had been warping up and outward since the early 1920s now thought to have risen at least twenty feet at the central caldera which measures an incredible 30 by 15 miles diameter. This is the mouth of a single huge super volcano, one of several on Earth, which last erupted violently around 600,000 years ago. When it did erupt that massive event sent debris out so far and so fast that molten rocks from that single blast were propelled into low Earth orbit and had formed a ring around the Earth! Yellowstone is in fact the largest and potentially the most destructive super volcano on Earth. On this day the Martians would attack this continental mantle hot spot with 80 Martian Flying Machines. A clear indication of the importance of this target.

Coming in from the north the Martians flew in four groups of twenty machines on a curved path out of the pole towards Yellowstone. The Martians were tracked on radar along most of their flight path as they appeared to fly away from areas we had stationed more than just a few air resources. At several points along the way as they flew closer to the ground they did encounter some resistance but most of the enemy craft arrived safely at the park. Their flight paths showed they were keeping close watch on our air resources. Orders were sent out for air commanders to keep close eyes on our covered aircraft and ensure they were not lined up in easy to attack areas to be possibly destroyed on the ground.

Wasting no time, spotters reported that the Martians had begun to circle the huge caldera firing dozens of seismic devices around the entire rim of the ancient volcano. Within ten minutes at least 350 seismic devices had been delivered to the target. The last machine was out of the area within twenty minutes of the arrival of the first flyer. Needless to say, with this many devices launched at such a relatively small target the two Cobra teams assigned to the general area did not even bother to respond – they had no chance of success. They did cable a report to Committee Headquarters in Lower-New York City detailing the attack. Within minutes the devices went off. It would be the first – and the only – time a Cobra team could report on the strange “energy hum” given off by so many devices at once. It was to make one nauseous and difficult to keep one’s balance which was greatly affected with headaches and watery eyes being common. More than a few people in the general area simply vomited due to the vibrations which “seemed to come from within.”

Months later we received an eyewitness report. “The ground began to vibrate almost imperceptibly at first as if you did not quite know if something was happening or not. But as the intensity increased steam began to issue from the great area on the south side of the ancient caldera. This was soon followed by massive venting of gases and ash springing from almost every portion of the entire mouth of the caldera. Before the ash and steam could cover most of the ground it was clear that the entire floor of the caldera was on fire as molten rock flowed in and over the cracks in the walls as if a mighty flaming river had become a massive water fall.”

Violent volcanic explosions which began to rock the area could be heard at least 500 miles away. One report stated “one of the fountains of lava sprayed its molten rock and ash at least 10,000 feet into the air.” The only question was: Would this event end with a truly massive explosive eruption on par with the last major event some 600,000 years ago? It would be several weeks before we felt comfortable with an answer. Geologists working in Canada, the United States and the Committee would finally report the Martians had inadvertently released so much gas and lava from so many points at the same time the attack not only drained a great deal of material from the underlying lava chamber but it had released so much natural gas pressure that had been increasing for thousands of years that a massive eruption on the level of 600,000 years ago would in fact no longer be a concern. In short, the Martians had used too many of their devices at one time to cause such an explosive eruption. They had managed to cause Yellowstone to put massive amounts of ash and steam as well as other more toxic gases into the atmosphere for the next two years which was a great plus for them. What they failed to do was cause a massive explosion which would have surely cut the heart out of the center of the United States not to mention the devastation to the entire planet for years.

APOLLO FLASH: TO ALL COMMANDS: MARTIAN LANDINGS MADE AT WICK SCOTLAND – IVIGTUT GREENLAND – PORT HARRISON, MC MURRAY, CALGARY CANADA – PETROPAVLOVSK, PETROZAVODSK, KIROV RUSSIA – KUSHIRO JAPAN – ULAN MONGOLIA – BUNBURY, WOOMERA, BROKEN HILL, DUBBO AUSTRALIA – RAWSON ARGENTINA.

Even though we had lost contact with our Grain Storage Facility G3, code named ‘Earth’ at Puerto, Natales, Chile soon after the Martians landed, we were later sent a message reporting that before the staff were killed they had managed to dynamite the main tunnel entrance leading into the underground facility effectively sealing it off from the enemy. They had given their lives to protect this vital storehouse of grains. It would take some weeks for the Martians to gain entrance if they had the time. We planned to make certain they did not have the time.

POSEIDON VLF RADIO MESSAGE: TO ATTACK SUBMARINES ATLANTIC – TASK FORCE BRAVO – ASSEMBLE AT POINT C-184 – TASK FORCE DELTA TO POINT D-014.

With that message ten attack submarines from Task Force Bravo attached to ‘Poseidon’ made their way to a point several miles off the coast of Mossel Bay. From there the force would coordinate an attack on the Martian boats now patrolling off the southern coast of Africa. It was time to take the battle for the seas to the Martians.

Radio intercepts informed the Committee that the Martians had sent instructions to their hybrid operatives to begin sabotage operations at all designated locations they could travel to. All commands were advised of the potential for sabotage by hybrids which would cause many area commanders to begin whole scale round ups of any remaining free hybrids. Orders were issued by ‘Apollo’ that any hybrid caught committing any type of sabotage was to be summarily shot! Posters were put up to the make the order clear to everyone. All Directors sent out their agreements.

Within several hours of our radio intercept reports came in of several assassinations of top leaders in China, India, Brazil, Canada, Algeria, France, Germany and Korea. In each case the assassin was a hybrid and all were executed on the spot except the hybrid captured in India. That hybrid was practically dismembered one piece at a time by its interrogators before it was “allowed to die”. These deaths caused several hybrids to be removed from sensitive positions in the Committee as well as increased body guard detachments assigned to leaders in all Committee offices around the world. My guard staff was increased to sixteen very well armed men and none were hybrids. Six were Tango operatives.

CS Tunguska reported its location to CS Atlantic ‘Poseidon’ as being just off the Port of Spain continuing to head south. Final instructions as to where to deliver their cargo had not yet been sent to the crew. They were however informed by their captain they were carrying an atomic bomb. Sydney Command Center was to coordinate this final leg of the voyage as the submarine delivered its cargo to an aircraft carrier which would fly the weapon to its target. However, with the Panama Canal no longer operational the mission was passed on to ‘Poseidon’ by ‘Apollo.’ Poseidon then ordered the submarine to continue south to a rendezvous point with Committee aircraft carrier CS Horizon now ordered to a position just off the northern coast of South Georgia Island. From there the weapon would be loaded on a jet fighter/bomber or a Phoenix II and ‘delivered’ to its target.

[END PART 64]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 65: Attacks on Command Cities; Invasion Map 1.]

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-63)

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[PART 63]

DAY THREE: 4 September 1938

THE MARTIANS SET THE FORESTS ON FIRE

 

The next phase of the Martian attack plan put into action before the Martians committed themselves to fully engage Earth’s military forces on the ground was to begin igniting large numbers of forest and grass fires. This was required to not only place a large amount of particulate matter into the atmosphere to help cool down the planet – which it did – but we suspected the real reason was to distract our military forces away from direct military operations to fight the fires. In this point they failed. It had already been decided no matter how many forests were set on fire by the Martians or their allies, or how large they became for the most part Earth forces would ignore them. The forests would grow back in a generation or two and grasslands even sooner so we would spend no time or manpower putting them out. The only surprise was how vast these forest fires would become in so little time. Nevertheless, we stuck to the plan. Killing Martians must come before putting out forest fires. In this regard we received another lucky break due to another miscalculation made by the Martians. The amount of rainfall their concentrated attacks on the atmosphere would produce was much greater in these areas than normal – heavy rains put out forest fires! In several areas the Martians were required to return several times to ensure the fires would not only continue burning but spread. They had done too good a job on the atmosphere. With this work they were using air resources that may well have been better used against our forces rather than attacking the planet. In fact, they had distracted themselves. Nevertheless, our jets went to work on their machines despite the expected losses.

For a full week reports continued to come into command centers of massive fires numbering at least 14,000 individual starting points being set off in some of the largest forest covered areas of the world. Under attack, along with many smaller areas, were the Amazon Rain Forest, the Northern Boreal Forests of Canada (which had been attacked earlier by the Martian Brotherhood as a possible test), the East-Siberian Taiga, the Giant Sequoia, the Scandinavian Taigas and the Russian Taigas as well as some extensive grassland areas in North America, the Amazon and central Russia and China. These massive fires caused great storms of stampeding wild animals in many areas where ever they occurred causing even more devastation. The loss of local wildlife was very high.

When later calculated the loss of vegetation in these and other areas would represent some 40% of the world’s timberlands. With these losses the Earth would also lose some oxygen generating capability from these locations for at least 80-100 years. However devastating these events were, they would not disrupt human life on Earth for the long term to any great degree, but it was still a considerable loss. Nevertheless, we set our sights clearly away from the forests, ignored the fires, and focused ourselves on the Martian assaults we knew were on the way. What we did not know was how truly powerful they would be.

 

RED WEED ATTACKS

At the same time the forests and grasslands were under attack the Martians began spraying massive amounts of Red Weed on large areas of farmland in North America, South America, China and the Soviet Union with central China apparently the main focus of these attacks. These were some of the same areas that had been attacked in 1901. During that war the Martians had also sprayed areas just behind their advancing ground forces. We expected they would do the same during this war. Changing their tactics they had began spraying these vast areas even before they had been attacked by Martian ground forces. Committee planners had anticipated such attacks and we were ready. This was one area we felt very comfortable with in the knowledge we could overcome these attacks at least on our crop growing environments even if the Red Weed did not dissipate on its own.

Chemicals had been developed a few years earlier which had a neutralizing effect on Red Weed and their seed pods. In each of these areas, and dozens more, old fashioned by-planes left over and refitted from the Great Earth War had been pre-positioned and fitted with these Red Weed killing chemicals in spray canisters that would not harm the crops but would destroy Red Weed. Local pilots, mostly older men who had served in the Great Earth War, were now prepared to spend many hours flying very close to the ground spraying much of the affected areas. It was not a complete solution to the problem but overall some 45% of the affected areas would be saved for future use. As for the bi-plane pilots several would be lost due to accidents flying so very close to the ground but none would be shot-down by Martian Flying Machines. In areas that followed their expected ground attacks we would attempt to follow behind and spray some of the Red Weed from trucks. We anticipated only 10% of these areas could be recovered by that method.

We had also developed fertilizers which included anti-Red Weed components and had been using these special blends in Northern Europe and Canada for several years despite protests from various groups. Testing had shown good results but these new fertilizers had only been available for wide use recently just prior to the invasion. Later examination showed areas which had been fertilized with the anti-Red Weed blends recovered much quicker than those areas which had not been treated. In fact some heavily fertilized areas showed no Red Weed growth at all despite being seeded by the Martians. We had won the battle against the Red Weed. It was not a major victory even though it had to do with feeding the world – but we would take it.

NORTH ATLANTIC AIR ENGAGEMENT

Co-ordinated from our Lower-London headquarters a mass attack by carrier planes was ordered to engage several Martian Flying Machines tracked by radar flying north over the Atlantic after hitting targets in north west Europe. British carriers HMS Valiant, HMS Defiant and HMS Victoria all stationed in the North Atlantic launched their fighters quickly, joined by aircraft from the USS Lexington and Committee Carrier CS Morgan. In total 106 fighters closed in on six Martian craft coming into contact near Rockall west of Scotland.

Closing in from five directions and flying very near the surface of the ocean below the very active cloud deck allowed the fighters to begin their attack runs before the Martians were able to properly react. The fact there was still a good amount of debris in the air did not seem to give the Martians any advantage in the fight, at least not at first. However, only three of the Martian craft turned to engage our fighters as the second formation of three ignored the fighters entirely accelerated and continued to fly north. Once again this was clear evidence the Martians were attempting to husband their air combat resources as best they could. During this engagement we would lose 41 of our fighters while the Martians lost only two of the three engaging craft. At least that was the total losses until the heavily damaged third Martian flew into the path of two Phoenix II fighters flying south out of Thule Airbase in Northwest Greenland. The Phoenix IIs made quick work of the third Martian Flying Machine.

In 1901 we had nothing to use to fight against the Martians in the air and even though this fight was costly in both lives and aircraft at least this time we had something to fight with. It was a lesson our air crews hoped to press hard on the enemies’ will to fight. Nevertheless, if these heavy losses continued it was possible we could very well lose the air war in a very short time.

THE MARTIAN’S MELT THE ICE

Martians were still dropping craft out of orbit on this third day continuing to beef up their now extensive command bases still not conclusively proven to be at both the North and South Poles. Nevertheless, supply spacecraft were landing at the poles with ground forces, walking machines and other equipment at regular intervals preparing to launch simultaneous attacks from their polar bases towards the equator expecting to link up at zero latitude. Their overall strategy to take the planet was to push from both poles like a massive military vice on the ground and in the air and keep pushing until all resistance ended. General hit-and-run air attacks continued on geologic targets as well as selective man-made facilities as well as directed attacks on some “high value targets.”

As this build-up of equipment and forces continued the Martians sent out dozens of flying machines to melt large areas of ice located just south of the North Pole, on Greenland’s ice cap, north of Canada and the Soviet Union as well as the edges of the Antarctic ice sheet. (More than likely they were melting the ice sheet in central Antarctica but we had no direct evidence of this at the time.) At first we could not understand why they would want to melt the ice as it seemed to contradict their known plan to cool the Earth. We soon learned the Martians were very well versed in Earth’s climatological matters. They had done their homework well. By melting the ice in these areas, but not down to bare ground always leaving the areas covered with a shallower ice sheet, they placed a very large mass of water vapor into the atmosphere which at those latitudes turned the water vapor into massive snow producing clouds. The water vapor collected on the ash and dust being produced by the massive fires and volcanic debris acted as condensation nuclei forming wide spread cloud formations. These efforts would cover hundreds of thousands of square miles of ground with clouds and new snow falls which reflected the Sun’s radiation back out into space. By melting the ice they were cooling the planet’s atmosphere. At the few places where they were visible they were producing some spectacular and rather ominous sunsets.

It seemed almost an afterthought that several dozen alpine glazers were also attacked in Europe as well as both South and North America and Asia. These glazers were melted down to bare rock and the resulting crash of water caused a great deal of catastrophic flash flooding and much loss of life. This result seemed more of an added plus for the Martians rather than an attack on those local populations. High winds accompanied these attacks as whole villages were buried by the flows.

Unlike the efforts on the Northern and Southern ice caps which we could do nothing about these other attacks were to cost the Martians several of their flying machines as air engagements were ongoing over dozens of areas around the world in an attempt to fight off as many of these geologic attacks as we could. We were still losing hundreds of aircraft and many pilots but the ratio of our losses in the air to Martian losses was improving. It may seem crass to say but if we could improve the numbers a bit more we could afford the losses but the Martians could not. The way things appeared at the time the Martians were possibly going to run out of aircraft before we would despite the odds. We were going to do everything we could to deny the Martians air superiority at least in the atmosphere if it were possible. At the time despite our losses the air war was pretty much a draw. But the war was only in its early stages. The Martians had yet to establish forward air bases. This would soon be corrected as their ground forces continued to advance.

Ground spotter report near Mount Forel, Greenland

Radio Burst Report (partial) from Greenland: … MACHINES USING PULSED HEAT RAYS TO LIQUIFY GLAZERS AROUND… DOZENS OF… NORTH TOWARDS POLE… MUCH VOL… (Transmission ends)

Off the coast of Upola, Samoa

Radio Burst Report CS Sea Devil 104 Pacific: GEMINI COMPLETELY DESTROYED…100 PERCENT LOSS…FEW SURVIVORS…WILL STAND BY… (Transmission ends)

Reports were also received which indicated Sea Cave Facility Blue 2 at Wake Island was a total loss. Mars Radio Traps MRT 8 on Bikini Atoll and MRT 11 on Adak, Alaska were also destroyed. It was not reported if they had been destroyed by direct Martian attack, as a result of the Pacific Ocean movement or while engaging Martian Flying Machines.

Submarines in the area which had been supporting Upola were released of ‘Gemini’ duty and placed under the command of Director ‘Triton’ in the command submarine CS Pacific. The subs were then ordered to spend no more than twelve hours in rescue/recon operations around Upola at which time they were ordered to conduct search and destroy operations against any Martian machine they could locate. Radio silence and radio monitoring was to continue. With the loss of Gemini, Triton now assumed regional command of the entire Pacific Ocean area. Titan was still in command of southern ground forces. ‘Apollo’ sent his acknowledgement and full agreement by radio burst message.

DAY FOUR: 5 September 1938

The Second Wave – Massive Air Attacks Begin

No other period of time before or after the fourth day (some 36 hours in total) of the Martian invasion saw greater use of massive, widespread and concentrated Martian air power than this short period of time. This longest of days saw attacks on targets ranging from the Arctic and Antarctic circles all the way to the equator with virtually no region left untouched. These attacks came as sweeping waves emanating from the poles; massed point attacks made by craft dropping out of orbit and individual single craft operations on what seemed like indiscriminate Heat-Ray attacks on targets of seemingly little or no military value such as archeological sites in Asia and South America. It was almost as if the Martians were attempting to erase the ancient history of man represented by these remnants of past civilizations as they became early targets of the Martians. Whatever the true reasons these historic sites were most certainly seen as threats to the Martians who were using some of their limited resources to destroy them.

Historic sites attacked on that day included Machu Picchu and dozens of other stone age cities in Central and South America including the MLZ. Ancient ruins in Greece and Italy also saw considerable activity on this day as did Stonehenge. By the end of the day some 3000 ancient sites had been attacked with many of them a complete loss. We had not thought to protect many of these sites although many had been camouflaged.

The Martians also paid close attention to large ships which had not yet made their way to any ‘safe’ harbor. Hundreds of cargo ships were lost along with several warships notably the battleship HMS Dreadnaught, the American cruiser USS Congress and Japanese carriers Shoho and Neosho.

As more and more battle reports came into command and control centers around the world a pattern began to emerge as to how and when the Martians preferred to fight. As we began to plot their air and ground attacks it became clear that the Martians preferred to fight at night or at the very least in low light situations. This made a good deal of sense since the Sun’s light they had become accustomed to on their home planet was about half as energetic as the sunlight we receive on Earth. Full daylight must be a great burden to the Martians. (Could we somehow blind them?)

Later review of old 1901 records showed that same pattern was generally present during the First Martian War – but we had somehow missed it. (Not that we could have done anything about it at the time.) With any luck this was a weakness we could exploit today as word was quickly passed on to all military commands world-wide. Major population centers were also notified to expect a greater number of attacks during periods of low light (there was plenty of cloud cover and very bad weather over large areas of the Earth at this time so low light was quickly becoming the norm) and darkness. We would later speculate this could be the answer as to why a majority of UFO reports we had been tracking over the years were reported to have occurred at night even though not all of them were suspected of being from Mars.

APOLLO FLASH: TO ALL COMMANDS: ENEMY PREFERS NIGHT AND LOW LIGHT OPERATIONS – PLAN Q ACCORDINGLY – GOOD HUNTING TO ALL

CITIES UNDER AIR ATTACK

Even before the Martians concentrated their attacks on the cities of the world national governments had moved their operations to underground bunkers out of harm’s way as they struggled to co-ordinate efforts with other nations to battle the Martians. High, medium and low level attacks on a vast selection of point and area targets began as dusk fell over the mid-Atlantic which at the time was undergoing a series of violent storms. Several hurricanes’ were forming in the mid-Atlantic at a time and in areas where they had never formed before. In total some 39,000 plus individual targets came under some type of air attack during that fourth long day of Martian operations. Many of these areas hit by the enemy had little in the way of air defense.

Nearly every above ground population center, including our three remaining prime command cities and New Washington Center were pounded by Martian Flying Machines firing deadly Heat-Rays, but mostly from high altitude. (Which it must be said somewhat reduced the effectiveness of these weapons as well as our own weapons to defend.) The Martians seemed reluctant to drop down to lower levels to attack our population centers realizing they were heavily defended by an overlapping series of weapons. They were also attacking our false cities set up as decoys which had also cost them attack resources as well as a number of flying machines so at least that part of our deception operation was working to some degree. These high altitude attacks on population centers made defensive counter attacks by Committee jets virtually impossible as they were unable to match the high altitudes of the Martian Flying Machines. However, this did not prove to be the case for our Phoenix IIs as they thundered skyward to meet the massive air threat.

Reports from New London, New York City, Sydney, Paris, Berlin and other key cities which had good numbers of Phoenix IIs indicated that our fighters were giving the Martians as good as they were getting, downing several of the Martian machines despite the fact they were outnumbered at all points. The damage to the above ground facilities in those heavily defended areas was measurably less than areas without Phoenix II fighters. We could however report some success had been achieved by our cities surface-to-air solid fuel missiles which had been deployed in dozens of cities around the world. The only problem was we did not have enough of these missiles as we would have liked to have had. But that can be said of any resource. By the end of the day the Martians had lost another 196 flying machines. We had lost at least 214 Phoenix IIs along with 756 other jets including many of the pilots. These were losses we could not replace even though we continued to build fighters and other war craft in hundreds of underground facilities despite these Martian attacks. (Assembling new jet engines to replace those damaged due to having flown in the clogged atmosphere was a high priority.) It was at this point the Committee began to recruit First Martian War pilots and pull them out of their Red Weed bi-planes. Their flying skills were needed elsewhere. Many would be flying jets for the first time. Not a few of these older pilots would prove to be damn good fighters.

While other Martian machines were attacking at high altitudes to soften up our defenses with Heat-Rays at least fifty major population centers around the world came under attack by mid-altitude machines dropping seismic devices triangulated on the centers of those cities. These seismic attacks were in conjunction with the Heat-Ray attacks adding yet another level of devastation. All of the cities attacked by these devices suffered some damage but major damage could only occur if the local geology was just right. If there were no major fault lines near a targeted city these devices could only generate moderate damage. Nevertheless, there was considerable damage to several cities most notably Los Angeles and San Francisco in California, Chicago, Nanking and Canton in China, Rosario Argentina, Munich Germany, Santiago Chile, Lima Peru, Portland Oregon, Osaka and Yokahama Japan, Wellington New Zealand, Rome and Naples in Italy and Jeddah Saudi Arabia. By the end of the day San Francisco and Osaka were gone – only rubble remained. Several cities which had been supplied with Tesla beam weapons were able to bring down some Martian craft as well as disrupt other attacks using high energy light beams to blind their pilots.

Destruction by powerful Martian Heat Rays at Lima Peru

 

In many of these areas roads soon became clogged with endless numbers of terrified people streaming out into the open and away from the devastation all around them. We were soon receiving reports of Martian Flying Machines in several areas (mostly in China at the time) coming in close to the ground and pumping Heat-Ray pulses on the fleeing crowds eviscerating thousands at a time! The brutality of our Martian enemies was on full display.

At our ‘Vaults for Mankind’ facility below Wellington (code named ‘Brown’) some disruptions occurred but the facility held up well with only minor damage. Our underground military base (MB4) “Delta” at Rosario also came through the attack virtually undamaged other than some electrical failures which were soon repaired. Damage assessment teams were also sent out from Delta to check on the local area. Due to the enemies’ heavy air attacks there would be little left standing to report on.

Although New London, New York City and Sydney were also attacked by these devices the damage they sustained was minor – none caused any collapse of tunnels at these locations even though surface structures did sustain some damage it was not at a critical level. Fire had done the most damage to the above ground sections of these cities. This was much more than the seismic devices and even that was less than had been estimated. We had built the bloody hell out of these primary underground cities and nothing that the Martians had thrown at these facilities so far was going to destroy them. Off the coasts of New York City and Sydney submarines detailed as prime city defense submarines were able to engage the enemy and bring down several of the Martian Flying Machines with rockets but were limited in their effectiveness due to the number of our fighter aircraft flying over and around these locations. While they were engaged in air-to-air combat we did not want to shoot down one of our own planes.

We were also able to engage the enemy at twenty five city locations which had been outfitted with some of Tesla’s back-engineered ground based Heat-Rays. Already several Martians had been shot out of the air due to these devices giving them a taste of their own bloody medicine. One Heat-Ray squad in central Berlin had shot down two Martian Flying Machines before it was destroyed by several blasts from the enemies’ Heat-Ray. Tesla had positioned forty of these Heat-Rays surrounding all of our four primary cities as well as New Washington Center. I can attest to the fact the crews around New London were very ready to take on the low flying Martians.

Committee anti-aircraft Heat Rays in action

 

Cobra teams in several locations were able to locate and destroy a number of these seismic devices most notably in Paris and Amsterdam. The teams had developed a new tactic of going after one of the three devices with the full team rather than dividing up their efforts to find all three knowing it took three devices to inflict major damage to any one target. If they were able to destroy one of the devices they could very well save the targeted city from major destruction. Nevertheless, hundreds of thousands lost their lives to these seismic attacks and the attacks on our cities had only just begun.

General European destruction

 

For their efforts on that day the Martians had set hundreds of thousands of structures on fire around the world including many storage facilities, ports, above ground oil reserves and other man-made facilities even as they continued their attacks on the planet itself all from high altitudes. All of this pushed a good deal more debris into an already well-damaged atmosphere. It goes without saying many cities and other population centers were experiencing large spread power failures. The blackouts had been initiated by local commanders, the power failures were courtesy of the Martians.

Just southeast of Thule Airbase

Ham Radio report AF61X (unconfirmed): Thule Airbase is under heavy Martian air attack from at least 30 Martian Flying Machines which continue to pound the base. The whole base seems to be on fire. I see no counter attack by our aircraft. Alpha Fox 61 X-Ray signing off.

CLOSE IN AIR-TO-GROUND ATTACKS

Mid and low level attacks concentrated on airfields, smaller above ground military facilities, radar facilities on both land and ships, dams, canals, electrical towers and electrical generating plants. The Martians were also able to attack and destroy dozens of dams mostly in North America, China and the Soviet Union however, dams located in Europe and South America did not go unnoticed as several of these facilities were also hit. These attacks naturally caused a great deal of flooding destroying many thousands of homes and small towns with the accompanying great loss of life. Throughout the war air attacks would continue to take a great toll on civilians in cities as well as open areas even as hundreds of thousands fled to areas of supposed safety. Needless to say, they also had a detrimental effect on local roads and rail lines making it very difficult for rescue operations to get into many affected areas. For the most part local Red Cross operations were on their own. In many cases isolation would be the norm.

Attacks on our radar facilities included several along both our North Polar Defense Line and South Polar Defense Line (notably the Peter 1 Island facility on the SPDL and the Vopnafjordur, Island site at the NPDL which were both completely destroyed). The Martians were trying to blind our radar nets but even as these facilities were being hit secondary facilities not yet placed into operation went on line. They had not been able to blind us yet. We had deployed four special radar submarines at both radar defense lines (two each expecting to be called to duty very early in the war). By popping up to periscope depth these submarines could deploy deck mounted radar dishes and electronically fill in some of the holes left open by these Martian attacks. When the Martians began to move towards greater populated areas we would deploy our mobile truck mounted radars.

Once again, as in the First Martian War, rail lines were targeted by Martian Flying Machines with mid and low level point attacks. At one period during these attacks the Martians appeared to pay concentrated attention to the Trans-Siberian Railway which crossed most of the USSR. Much of this vital link was destroyed including many of the supporting stations along the way. At many other rail locations around the world thousands of miles of track were being destroyed as well as many facilities constructed alongside these tracks. The Martians understood these were still vital Earth links but they must have also known they could not possibly destroy all of our rail lines as they were far too numerous and at some critical points, mostly near major cities, very well defended. They simply did not have enough resources to complete the job. In one sense we had out built the Martians. Even though they would continue to attack and sever our life-lines whenever the opportunity presented itself.

A strategic shift in Martian combat operations was noted on this day when several canals came under attack. In 1901 the Martians clearly stayed away from attacking canals and their associated infrastructures. However, on this day dozens of canals came under fire including the Panama Canal (not built until after the First Martian War), the Grand Canal of China, the Manchester Ship Canal in England and the Eire Canal in North America. All of these facilities suffered a great deal of damage with the Eire and Panama Canals thought to be total losses. The stand out on this day was the Suez Canal which was over flown several times as Martian craft attacked targets in and around Egypt including Cairo (another area generally not attacked during the First Martian War) but not one Heat-Ray was ever fired towards the Suez. The Martians seemed to have something else in mind for this canal. The same could be said of the Giza Plateau which also remained untouched.

During these low level attacks on the Panama Canal no fewer than five Committee submarines engaged Martian Flying Machines as they came into range. These submarine rocket and anti-aircraft machine gun attacks would bring down three of the Martians however two of our submarines, one on each end of the canal were destroyed by Martian counter attacks. Much of Panama City was set on fire and destroyed as the surviving population fled into the anticipated safety of the thick jungle. There was some truth in the thought that what the Martians could not see they could not kill.

Our underground Committee Secret Service Communication Center (Com 8) near Panama City was still operational but it was now on its own without any local military support. Com 8 would continue to relay reports of local Martian activity to the Committee as well as co-ordinate intercepted low power Ham Radio reports. With the canal now useless there would not be much locally to report. They would however be able to continue working on their primary assignment – intercepting Martian radio transmissions and disrupting them whenever they could.

Off the coast of Panama Canal – Atlantic

Committee Submarine VLF radio message, Atlantic: PANAMA CANAL FACILITIES ATLANTIC END COMPLETELY DESTROYED… ONE BOAT SUNK… ONE MARTIAN FLYING MACHINE DOWNED BY ROCKET FIRE… FIRES ONSHORE AS FAR AS CAN BE SEEN… MUCH MATERIAL IN THE ATMOSPHERE… (Transmission ends)

For most of the day low level attacks were confined to point targets well away from heavily fortified and defended locations. Even so the Martians would pay a price for many of those attacks as Martian machines were drawn into attacking several of our Martian Radio Traps both on land and at sea. We were also beginning to field reports that some of our radio jamming efforts had been effective against some low flying Martian machines.

From radio burst reports, cable and Ham Radio messages as well as VLF submarine reports we learned several Mars Radio Traps had been set off. We lost contact on this day with our traps at Maryuq, Libya at MRT 3, Amsterdam Island, Indian Ocean at MRT 7 and Prince Edward Island in the South Atlantic at MRT 12 (including our nearby radar station). In the fog of war there was no way of knowing if the Martians had simply destroyed them before they came into range of the traps or if they were activated by the Martian craft flying too close and exploding as designed. We did however receive live TV images fed into our Sydney command center of one Martian craft approaching MRT 6 in the Gibson Desert of Australia which clearly showed the destruction of a large Martian Flying Machine hit by the trap’s solid rocket fire. Seconds later we lost the signal. We would later receive reports of at least three of our ship bourn radio traps having also gone off. How effective they had been is also a matter of speculation. In total we had deployed 74 of these ship traps, half would be gone by the end of the day and any success they achieved would be icing on the cake.

The Martians were still engaged in continuing air-to-air combat with our air forces all over the world which were still taking heavy losses the entire day, but we were still very much in the fight. Every available Committee and national combat aircraft from both carrier and land bases other than those designated to protect key city points and vital military facilities were on the hunt for Martian craft. One unconfirmed report spoke of twelve old bi-planes taking off from an American Airfield in the State of Kansas to engage the low flying Martians. None returned to the airfield. Of course they had no chance of success. I like to think they took out at least one Martian craft before becoming victims of their deadly Heat-Rays.

By the end of the fourth day we had lost more than half of our advanced Phoenix IIs in air combat and at least 40 percent of our other jet fighters as well as some 60 percent of our prop driven fighter aircraft but our analysts believed the Martians were paying a higher price than they may have anticipated. We estimated the enemy by this time had lost at least 489 flyers. Combined Earth forces had brought down nearly 23% of the enemies known fighting air force! (This would subsequently prove to be lower than actual Martian air losses.) This was much more than we had anticipated. To be honest I had expected our air losses would be greater. And I had also expected the Martians would own the skies by the fourth day. With the Martians appearing to back away to some degree from air combat we estimated once again this day of massive air attacks despite our losses in the air and on the ground had been a draw at least in the air.

Along with fighting the Martians our air crews had to fight the intense weather at nearly every point on Earth. The vast amount of material in the atmosphere was playing hell on our engines. There was a real possibility we would run out of good engines long before we ran out of aircraft.

That evening we lost contact with CP Magic – ‘Uranus’. We would later learn that ‘Uranus’ had to get the hell out of his holding pattern when several Martian craft flew in to attack Mars Radio Trap MRT 5 on Flores Island, which happened to be just north of his flight location. (A tactical error by our staff who had positioned Uranus too close to a radar trap designed to bring in Martian craft.) ‘Uranus’ flew off to refuel at Azores so low and below much of the debris that high ocean wave spray could hit the windshield! Returning to the mid-Atlantic he re-positioned himself 500 miles farther south – well away from any radar traps.

Recon team inside Rosario, Argentina, SA

Radio Burst Report, Tango 13 Alpha: CITY NEARLY COMPLETELY DESTROYED… MASS CAUSALTIES… REMAINING SURVIVING POPULATION RIOTING…DELTA FORCE FULLY OPERATIONAL… STANDING BY… (Transmission ends)

Late that day over 2000 hybrids being held in two Hybrid Relocation Centers (HRC-12 and HRC-34) in Lower-London broke out of their confinement and attacked local residents. ‘Zeus’ immediately authorized the use of lethal force due to local above ground combat conditions and martial law. 284 hybrids were killed with 401 wounded by reserve and regular military forces backed up by heavily armed police patrols and not a few civilians. The situation was stabilized within four and a half hours. Surviving hybrids were sent back to the centers and the guards were doubled. The hybrids were then read an order by ‘Zeus’ advising them that any relocation camp hybrid found outside of their centers for any reason would be “summarily executed by firing squads”. The situation was far too critical to play games with hybrids. We soon learned that other cities were having similar ‘problems’ with their hybrids. Many had adopted the identical solution!

TRITON VLF RADIO MESSAGE: TO ALL PACIFIC SUBS: BLUE TWO AND BLUE FIVE DESTROYED – BLUE ONE MODERATE DAMAGE – PLAN ACCORDINGLY – CONTINUE THE HUNT – TALLY HO.

MORE EARTH MOVEMENTS

The reports were coming in so fast and from so many locations our meteorological operations center could not keep track. Our world map in the command center which had been set aside in the small meteorological office in Lower-London was becoming filled with different colored pins.

We had set this area aside because it was felt some measure of attention should be paid to tracking potential geologic or atmospheric damage caused by the Martians. No one could have predicted the extent to which the Martians would go, nor the incredible response the world would have to such attacks. The small four man team in Lower-London as part of Department J – Geologic Studies and Resource Directorate would have their hands full.

It was clear after the initial attack on the Pacific area we could expect many more events related to it. Clarification did not take long. As the attacks continued reports came in of large earthquakes occurring along the coast of Chile, off of Ecuador, east of Guadalajara, east of San Francisco, Vancouver and Adak Alaska. Our Committee Secret Service Communications Center Com 7 at Vancouver was severely damaged but still operational. They were reporting nearly continues earthquakes in the general area. Eighty-five large events were recorded on this day alone. These quakes were all in the Thomas Scale of 7.8 to 8.7. After shocks of great strength were being felt along the entire western Pacific generating more destructive seismic sea waves.

South of Iceland, now occupied by Martian forces, felt strong underwater quakes along a 400 mile line south of the island into the Atlantic. There were dozens more around the world from 6.5 to 7; far too many to note. In several areas tunnels were beginning to show stress and more than a few had collapsed under these earthquake conditions. It seemed the planet was trying to readjust itself from the titanic blows it had absorbed in the Pacific. It was feared the adjusted Earth movements could go on for months – even years. Our badly wounded planet was trying to recover.

[END PART 63]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 64: The beginning of the ground war.]

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-62)

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[PART 62]

The First Wave – Martian Geologic Attacks

THE MARTIAN SUPER-BOMB ATTACK

“I think the bloody Martians just moved the whole god damn Pacific Ocean!”

Submarine VLW Radio Message

The Martian invasion plan called for the planet itself to be attacked first. At 05:27 a.m. GMT eighty-one Martian Flying Machines came out of polar orbit in twelve groups of six and seven spacecraft each dropping off along a lateral line heading south. Beginning their decent over the North Pole they were tracked by NPDL radars and were soon flying a pattern which would place all twelve Martian groups along a 4000 mile long line at the western edge of the Pacific Ocean. Committee and other world military forces were immediately notified that the machines were heading for the Western Pacific as several squadrons of national and Committee fighter aircraft from both land and carriers were scrambled to engage the enemy. The air war had begun.

Before the First Martian War mankind had yet to fly further than a few dozen yards. During the Great Earth War we had advanced to fight in the air but only at a very primitive level. Before this war humanity had developed craft which would for the first time bring the air war to the enemy and hopefully somewhat equal the odds over the skies of Earth.

Both Phoenix IIs (originally named Phoenix Alpha II) and Whitehead Thunder Jets were soon screaming towards the edge of the Pacific from several directions ready to face the first Martian attackers. Several old prop-driven fighters were also headed into the fight. Most of the Thunder Jets had been launched from Japanese aircraft carriers Kaga, Hiryu, Zubkaku, Shokaku, and Zuikaku, the British carrier HMS Resolution, the American carrier USS Enterprise, and Committee carriers CS Alliance, and CS Resolve as well as land based jets mostly stationed at Yokohama, and Manila as well as other bases. The first five Phoenix II attack craft to make contact were launched from CS Resolve. This would be the first full ocean war fought by mankind with extensive use of submarines and aircraft carriers and the learning curve would be very steep.

In total these Martians would face 495 Earth fighters. What we did not do was send up every fighter we could in the event this was a bluff to pull our resources away from other critical defense points. We knew that this was going to be a long hard slugfest and no one could predict where on Earth the Martians would attack next. We had to be ready for anything. As it turned out we were nowhere near as ready as we had hoped.

The first new development of this Martian invasion not seen before which had become clear as soon as the attacks began was that the Martians were now able to go into Earth orbit to prepare for their attacks rather than first landing on Earth, and they were not using the old cylinders of 1901. One large craft could launch several Martian Flying Machines from orbit. For the most part these new machines were fully prepared to do battle from the moment they left Mars. The Martians it seemed had indeed improved their equipment and methods of warfare. The time required to deploy their flying and walking machines of war had gone from hours to mere minutes. We would need to adapt to that new reality – and fast!

As the Martian Flying Machines dropped out of orbit and into the proper atmosphere they formed a huge fan pattern over the Western Pacific Ocean. Over much of that portion of the Pacific thunder storms had commanded the skies. Now they would be replaced by a much more destructive wind. The fan pattern seen on radar indicated these machines were pushing towards five separate points with nine each machines in the lead with six more flying machines trailing the first nine. These were thought to be the first and second waves of the attack force but what were the targets? We did not yet know where their targets could possibly be as none of the five fan lines pointed directly at any primary population or military centers. It was a much wider area. In fact they did not seem to be heading towards any heavily populated areas at all.

As the first and second waves flew on they formed a large double diamond formation still heading towards the Western Pacific. Behind the twin attack groups flew twelve trailing Martian flyer groups roughly spread out along the 4000 mile wide attack line. This was a very thin rear defense; typical of the Martian war methods and the Earth fighters were about to hit that group along several points with around 95 jet fighters each.

At the same time the first five Phoenix II attack craft made radar contact with the northern group of Martian Flying Machines in the first wave and were closing in fast. Well behind the Phoenix IIs were 36 Thunder Jets closing in as fast as they could. As the first Earth fighters came in six of the Martian machines peeled away from the formation and headed directly at the Phoenix II attack craft. The Phoenix IIs pulled left, right, top, and bottom in a precision movement which seemed to momentarily confuse the Martian flyers. This distraction allowed the fifth Phoenix II now flying at top speed “on the deck” to fly right past the Martian machines without being fired on. The pilot flew straight towards the lead Martian group. Pulling back to engage the Martian flyers the four remaining Phoenix IIs began to line up on the Martians sending in ten air-to-air missiles at the Martians now turning hard to face the four Earth built fighters. Clearly they had not expected to face such an aggressive attack by Earth forces in combat flying machines which closely resembled their own. It was to cost them, as no fewer than six of the air-to-air missiles were on target, four hitting the first and two hitting the second Martian Flying Machines. Both Martian craft trailed smoke but they still had a good deal of fight left in them as they opened up with their Heat-Rays. The powerful beams caught three of the Phoenix IIs instantly tearing into the closest two, both of which exploded as the third less affected jet began to trail smoke. However, this shot missed the fourth Phoenix II which dove hard to the deck. Pulling up hard and closing in fast the Phoenix II flew under two of the Martian Flying Machines pumping machinegun fire and four rockets into the first Martian and incredibly rammed the second!

Seeing the ongoing fight and closing fast the Thunder Jets now fanned out like a pack of wolves going after the remaining Martian Flying Machine. However, only half of the jets engaged as 18 of the fighters went through the local battle without firing in order to go after the waves of Martian Flying Machines still heading towards the Western Pacific. They would be joined by the single operational Phoenix II in the area.

It would not be long before this Earth fighter force as well as several others came into contact with several Martian craft. And although this group would eventually bring down four more of the Martians they could not stop any of the forward group of enemy machines from dropping their devastating payloads on their targets. In the end none of these Earth fighters in the first group returned to their bases as all were eventually lost in air-to-air combat. These results were generally repeated along the full line of air-combat over the Western Pacific as our losses continued to climb. Even though our air forces were taking out some of the enemies fighting machines it would not be enough.

The fusion rocket-bombs were launched by the forward Martian Flying Machines at the Marianas Trench, Aleutian Trench, Japan Trench, Kuril-Kamchatka Trench and the Kermadec-Tongo Trench. Radio burst and spot reports were soon coming in that strong ‘S’ and ‘P’ shockwaves had been registered across the entire Pacific emanating from the Western edge of the ocean. The floor of the Pacific Ocean, the largest area on Earth covering some 70 million square miles, had been attacked!

 

Two of the Super-bomb blasts from the Martian first strike attack on Earth

 

Somewhere near the Kuril Islands

Submarine 143 Radio Burst Report, Pacific: HIGH ENERGY FLASH… WEST OF POSITION 76A – 282 DEGREES FOLLOWED BY STRONG SHOCK WAVE… SECONDARY MOVEMENTS… (Transmission ends)

Five separate pulses closely timed together were registered on radio receivers indicating a massive release of some type of very high pulse energy. Initial reports coming in from the Cook Islands, Mariana Islands, Hiroshima, Japan, Kamchatka peninsula and Kodiak, Alaska, were all reporting massive mushroom-like clouds in the direction of the trenches preceded by a huge fireball reaching the surface which seemed to have exploded from deep underwater. Reports were starting to come in of massive volcanic eruptions around the entire western edge of the Pacific ‘Ring of Fire’. We did not need these reports to know a massive event had occurred as several monitoring stations were wiring reports that the enemy pulses had set up a line of earthquakes of historic magnitude – some as energetic as 10.6 on the Thomas Scale! The entire floor of the Western Pacific had come alive as a large section of the ocean floor simply dropped dozens of feet.

All communications with our base at Lower-Upola had been cut and had gone silent since we first began receiving these reports. The Central Pacific cable had also been cut and was no longer operational. North and south Pacific cables were still operational as were the backups.

Eruptions were soon ongoing at Aleutian Range, Kamchatka Russia, Kuril Islands, Sakota Japan, Ryukyu Islands, Baguio Philippines and the Mariana Islands. Seismic sea wave warnings were issued for the entire Pacific region. Casualties were expected to be extensive throughout the entire area.

Seismic sea waves were soon moving across the Pacific from several points traveling east and west at an incredible 400 miles per hour. Asia was hit first with great devastation on every facing shore line. When these waves hit Hawaii they impacted the islands at an estimated 140 miles per hour at a height of 80 feet! The last message out of Hawaii that day had come from our Kazumura Cave facility at Hilo shortly before the first waves hit the island. Scientists would later discover the whole Western Pacific Ocean Basin had moved both down and sideways! Incredible as it sounds that movement was so powerful it actually slowed the Earth’s rotation, adding an estimated 2-1/2 seconds to the year! They would later calculate that one of these super bombs equaled five times the amount of explosive energy mankind had used during our entire history on planet Earth and our world had just been hit by five of them! These were much more powerful than the super bomb we had built by a very large margin. If they had any more of these devices we were in deep trouble.

This opening Martian attack on the Pacific basin sank many islands including much of the underground command facility at Upola Island, Samoa. At the time we feared it was a complete loss which included the loss of one of our primary cities and most of its population numbering in the hundreds of thousands. Upola Island held one of our newer primary ‘Vaults for Mankind’ facilities as well as one of our Committee Secret Service Communications Centers (COM 4) and it had taken only minutes to destroy the entire facility. It was feared that several million people across the Pacific had been killed during this first Martian attack of the war.

The Pacific Ocean shift had dropped many island areas some 40 feet. It was the massive energy impacted on the area by the sea waves which did the rest of the damage. After the waves passed there was little recognizable remaining on the surface of any Samoan island. Other islands later confirmed to have been partly or fully destroyed were spread across the entire Pacific area, but these were only the tip of the iceberg which included most of the land masses comprising the Hawaiian Islands now showing only the top two-thirds of three shield volcanoes showing any type of vegetation which were then undergoing massive eruptive events. The islands would soon be mostly free of vegetation. Ancient natural tunnels were also greatly damaged.

We had lost contact with our Vaults for Mankind facility at Midway Island (a mixed facility code named Gray) which was also feared lost. However, despite major damage we later discovered that much of the facility had survived – barely.

Despite the massive destruction on land including much damage to port facilities most of the military ships in the Pacific were still in fighting condition which included all of our carriers and submarines.

Reports from the opposite side of the Earth soon told of strange and powerful earthquakes never before reported in several areas including Algeria, Libya, Niger, Mali, Southern Africa and the Belgium Congo. Landslides, debris flows, and new cracks in the Earth with mud flows from major thunder storms were also being reported. Thousands were killed as panicked populations scrambled away from the hardest hit areas. The planet had been given a devastating blow and it had seemingly come alive! The Martians had found a way to use our own world to kill across a wide expanse of the planet.

Hour’s later seismic sea waves generated by the bombs and the movement of the Pacific Basin slammed into the west coast of America with devastating results. Every major city along the coast from Alaska to the tip of Argentina was hit hard as wave after wave pushed on shore. Hundreds of thousands were killed and millions more were left homeless. Within days numerous earthquakes would begin to hit these areas once thought to be dormant as several fault lines and volcanoes came alive causing even more devastation. It was not long before the Pacific skies were clogged with debris heading east from dozens of volcanic eruptions.

The major port facilities at Tacoma, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Jose and Lima suffered major damage as did the Sea Cave Facility at Portland (code named Blue 5). Blue 5 was now out of action. The Pacific end of the Panama Canal was moderately damaged, but was not put out of action. Committee Secret Service Communication Center (Com 8) near Panama City was still operational. However, because of its protected location the major port facility at Vancouver suffered very little damage other than some minor flooding. It would continue to operate including, despite some damage, our Vancouver Committee Secret Service Communication Center (Com 7). Our Sea Cave Facility at Santiago, Chile (Blue 9) suffered only minor damage. The massive ‘sea doors’ had taken a good deal of punishment but held. The same type of protective doors also saved our Sea Cave Facility at San Diego, California (Blue 1). These communication centers would still be able to service our submarines and monitor Martian radio transmissions.

TARGET EARTH

Despite the vast amount of damage done to man-made facilities in and around the Pacific region it took a while for us to understand why the Martians would use such a powerful group of weapons to disrupt the planet rather than use such powerful weapons to destroy four or five of our largest cities or even some of our largest military facilities. We soon realized their strategic plan and whom or rather what they were at war with. They were not at war with human’s per-say; they were at war with Planet Earth! With that realization it became clear the Martians, with their very long view of most things, were never at war with mere humans. Humans in their minds were nothing more than a convenient food supply or at worse a secondary ‘infection’ of the planet they would eventually need to deal with before they could secure their new Mars. (For some reason they referred to their home world, in their language of course as “Mars Prime”.)

That was a clear indication of how little they regarded humanity and our ability to defend ourselves. It must be remembered from the Martian point of view they had not been defeated by humans – which was absolutely correct – they had been delivered a setback by a disease they had originally failed to take into account from which they had now fully recovered. It was now time to simply take what in their way of thinking was already theirs and that included the source of food, which was still plentiful and making at lot of noise walking around on two feet!

The planet itself would continue to be their primary target for a while longer as they built up their needed supplies to deal with the ‘human problem.’ Four hundred more Martian spacecraft dropped out of orbit near the end of the day split between both poles. These were thought to have been large cargo and troop ships, sent down to expand and re-enforce their two suspected main Earth battle command centers at the North and South Poles. That strategy at least had not changed since 1901.

With these next Martian craft came the final attack on that first day. Almost simultaneously Martian Flying Machines attacked the Deep Space Radio telescope network destroying the primary dishes at Goldstone California, Canberra, Australia, and Robledo de Charela, Spain. For the most part we had lost our ability to ‘listen in’ on Mars. That task now fell to several much smaller dishes. They would have a great deal of difficulty doing any work with all the lightning discharges and debris in the atmosphere.

DAY TWO: 3 September 1938

ATTACKS ON THE VOLCANOS

As large numbers of terrified people not unexpectedly continued to leave major population centers especially along coastal areas clogging up the roads, world-wide tracking radars were picking up more Martian Flying Machines dropping out of Earth orbit. Martian machines were once again being tracked and with the massive attack on the Pacific Ocean the day before most in Lower-New York City Command Headquarters speculated this would be another “super bomb” attack possibly on population centers or perhaps other earthquake prone areas. Thunder Jet interceptors and Phoenix II aircraft as well as thousands of National jet fighters on runways and aircraft carriers around the world were ready to counter-attack any of the Martian machines if they made a run at our major cities or military facilities. However, these did not seem to be the targets the Martians were interested in, at least not yet. Once again they were not de-orbiting near major cities. Even seeing this we were not about to pull our defense fighters away from our major population centers for hit-and-run missions. We soon had our answer as to their next target areas as the next wave made their low orbit run and on into the lower atmosphere.

The machines coming in high over the North Pole dropped down and flew directly towards the Caribbean area. Before long the first group came to a halt near Mount Pelee even as fighter jets, many from our carriers, closed in on the Martian craft. From this oversight position witnesses saw the first giant craft fire three bright blue rockets into the ground in a triangular pattern around the volcano. When the first radio reports came in we knew at once the Martians were going to set off volcanoes with their seismic devices just as they had in the past. It soon became clear that they were going to set off as many as possible in as short a time as they could.

The first machines continued their targeting runs flying over and rocketing seismic devices around Purace volcano in Colombia, Arenal volcano in Costa Rica, Izalco volcano in El Salvador, Fuego volcano in Guatemala, Cosequina volcano in Nicaragua and finally Popocatepell volcano in the Mexican Lawless Zone as our fighters did their best to engage the enemy craft with rockets and machine-gun fire. Radio reports were flashed to military units in all of these areas except the Mexican Lawless Zone. For the most part the Martians seemed to be playing a hit-and-run game. Unless necessary they did not openly engage our fighters. Even this earlier in the war it was becoming clear they had become concerned that even with our great losses in the air they could ill afford to lose too many of their flying machines. They had a long way to go with limited resources. It must also be noted the Martians had flown over thousands of our anti-aircraft guns in the process of these attacks which despite the massing of fires by our gun crews we had not done a great deal of damage. Nevertheless, our forces were able to shoot down a few of the Martian Flying Machines. In my view we had only gotten lucky and not skilled with this method considering the massive effort and low shoot down count. We had to do a hell of a lot better.

Volcano going off after Martian attack

 

Using eyewitness spotter reports relayed in by Ham Radio operators and last known position radar tracking, teams were sent out to find and if possible destroy as many of these seismic devices as they could before they could be set off. There would be very little time before it would be too late to disarm them. This was the new job for the seismic “Cobra Teams” as they were called. These small elite military units (283 teams spread around the world) had been originally tasked to locate Martian Flying Machines as they landed and destroy them as soon as possible prior to being assembled for war. With these war machines no longer requiring such work the Cobra Team’s original job had become obsolete. Now they would attempt to locate and destroy their seismic devices. There would be no effort to disarm or remove these devices. Destroy in place no matter where they were found was their only job.

The Second Martian group to drop out of orbit on this day was only 25 minutes behind the first. This group was clearly headed for Indonesia, a prime location for strato-volcanoes including some of the deadliest ones on Earth. It did not take long for the machines to drop their deadly seismic devices around Agung, Kelut, Krakatoa, Peak of Ternate and Tambora volcanoes in and around Indonesia. We knew with that many volcanoes being attacked in such a small geographic area we were in deep trouble in Indonesia. There were nowhere near enough military “Cobra” units in the area to cover all of those volcanoes and there were not nearly enough safe havens in the area, nor ships available to evacuate the population. The plain truth was hundreds of thousands more were going to die and there was not a damn thing anyone could do about it. Nevertheless, fourteen Cobra teams went in to do what they could. Most of them would not survive the job.

For days after these attacks unseasonably heavy rains poured down on a population already devastated. The planet itself was beginning to respond to these attacks! Weather patterns all over the world were scrambled as never before. Climate histories were becoming obsolete.

As more and more volcanic material entered the lower and mid levels of the atmosphere it was becoming difficult for our aircraft to stay up for extended periods of time. It would not take long for engines to begin to malfunction as this material was sucked into their air intakes. Lightning strikes were becoming common as eruptions continued to pump great amounts of extra energy into the atmosphere. Several of our jets were being hit by lightening each hour that passed and some with such heavy energy they became disabled sending them to the ground. The only aircraft which seemed to come through this electronic field were our Phoenix II s and naturally the Martian Flying Machines.

The atmosphere was also becoming cooler as the Sun’s rays continued to reflect off of the massive amount of volcanic ash now floating over much of the Earth. The Martian’s plans were succeeding all too well.

 

South of Tambora Indonesia

Secure cable report from Spot 245A (Cobra 16) on volcanic activity in the area: SEVERAL VOLCANOS SETTING OFF MASSIVE ERUPTIVE GASSES…MARTIAN FLYERS SPOTTED OVER ACTIVE AREAS… HEAVY LOCAL DAMAGE… HEAVY CASULTIES… TWO MARTIAN MACHINES SHOT DOWN… (Transmission ends)

One hour after the first machines dropped out of orbit two more groups of flying machines came down. One group flew north to the Icelandic rift zone near Laki Fissure and according to eyewitnesses delivered some 30 seismic devices along a 25 mile line. This was the first time we had seen these devices laid out in such a long series rather than in a cluster of three. We needed to take note of this. Within hours a 30 mile long fissure had opened up with at least 30 separate eruptive zones. The tremendous amount of gas and dust was lit up by huge electrical discharges as black ash fell over vast areas of the island. Strong winds pushed the debris towards Northern Europe. As the clouds moved across Europe torrential acid rains began to fall in a band of at least 500 miles wide. Darkness fell during mid-day over much of Europe. This one eruptive fissure would continue to pump material into the atmosphere for the next eight months. By then it would be clear that there would be no summer for the next year! It was far too cold. These Icelandic eruptions would cause the loss of 85% of the population of Iceland. In the end the entire island nation would need to be abandoned.

The next group headed for Japan and was soon spotted over Sakura-zima volcano. Thirty minutes later, their work done, they headed north following the other Martian machines, which had also deployed their devices. To counter this attack the Japanese were able to send up nearly 150 prop-driven fighters in an effort to swarm the Martian machines. Most never got close, hit by the deadly Heat-Rays, but two of the old fighters incredibly fought through and once again one of our pilots whose name we will never know rammed a Martian bringing it to the ground. The Martians were learning just how determined we humans were when it came to defending our planet even when the costs were very high.

We were soon receiving spot and wireless reports that Reventador in the Andes, Santorini in Greece, Volcano in Italy, Lamington in New Guinea and Bezymianny Volcano in Kamchatka were all erupting and at levels never before seen in historic times. Dozens of giant Martian machines had dropped out of orbit to deliver their deadly seismic devices in these areas before heading out towards the North and South Poles. With all of this volcanic activity it did not take long for the skies over much of the Earth to become clogged with volcanic debris from these eruptions which were now adding their material to the already massive amount of debris sent into the atmosphere by the initial attack on the Pacific Ocean basin (the Ring of Fire).

At our headquarters in Lower-London’s Mars War Room (as well as other command centers) staffs were co-coordinating dozens of air attacks by Committee and national forces over European skies. At the same time massed air engagements were occurring at hundreds of other locations around the world. And even though Earth forces were having an effect by shooting down dozens of these machines our losses were closing in on 30 percent. We were losing some 35 fighters for every Martian Flying Machine our forces were able to destroy. Their Heat-Rays were taking a terrible toll on our flyers even as our air forces continued to engage each and every enemy craft they could find. Throughout the war carrier and land based fighters would keep up the pressure on enemy forces on land, sea and over the embattled skies.

A reporter from the New-London Daily Mail assigned to the central west coast of Italy reported by shortwave before his broadcast went off the air.

What I see is an unbroken wall of fire, two miles long; against this curtain of fire, which blocks out the sky, are silhouetted the towers of the churches and the flat square roofs of the houses. The sea glows a deep copper- red, and worst of all from the densely packed mob of thousands of refugees huddled on the narrow quay, between the advancing fiery death behind and the deep waters in front, comes continuously such a frantic screaming of sheer terror as can be heard miles away…

Radio jamming devices beamed from low Earth orbit began to interfere with radio transmissions both civilian and military. The Martians had set up a series of small orbital craft over much of the Earth designed to eventually jam most but not all of our wireless radio transmissions. (We still had some local wireless in use.) They had planned well but if they had expected these jammers to completely cripple our communication networks they had miscalculated. Nevertheless, for the most part the only long range radio traffic getting through were the new burst transmissions and even those needed to be sent two or three times to insure they were properly received. Most cable systems were still in working order and had at this point not been attacked. (Since most were buried and some deeply the hope was they could not be found.) That old but reliable system soon became our best and most secure method of communication. The Central Pacific cable itself had not been the primary target when it was lost and of course we had no word out of Hawaii or most other Pacific islands including our primary city base at Upola since the initial attack. All had gone quiet. We were expecting a flash report or perhaps a long wave underwater radio report from one or more of our submarines in the general area before long. Submarine radio traffic was unaffected at the time so messages continued to come in from those sources.

At the same time radars tracked dozens more Martian machines de-orbiting on flight paths which eventually led to the North Pole where the Martians were thought to be assembling their northern ground attack forces. Simultaneously the South Polar Defense Line (SPDL) radars were tracking some 214 Martian Flying Machines heading out of orbit towards the South Pole in central Antarctica. Our spotty Antarctic weather stations were reporting high surface winds and much greater snow fall than normal – it was an estimated minus 90 degrees at the pole. We knew it would not be long before these machines began their deadly ground attacks. The Martians must have thought, knowing our history, they could not be attacked if they staged their invasion from or near the poles. We were planning to prove them wrong.

 

Off the western coast of central Italy

Committee Submarine 37 radio burst report, Med: MARTIAN FLYING MACHINE SHOT DOWN BY ROCKET SALVO FIRED FROM THIS BOAT… MUCH LOCAL VOLCANIC ACTIVITY… SKY COVERED WITH MUCH ASH… FIRES ALONG COAST FOR MILES… MUCH DEVASTATION… (Transmission ends)

Sub launched surface to air missile

By this time most major population centers above and below ground had been placed under local martial law and naturally all reserve forces had been called up. Our primary underground cities and military facilities were now, for the most part, completely closed off and heavily defended. Populations in large cities above ground were continuing the move to off-set areas prepared for just such a purpose. One of our primary goals in the Committee was to keep people out of the way of the Martians if it was at all possible. It was a task we damn well knew we could not accomplish but we had to do our best. By now of course all underground tunnels natural or man-made would be filled to capacity and more. This was high stakes “hide and seek’ from the Martians and no one knew if it would be successful.

As these events were occurring individual attacks had been made against several observatories which had been part of our Mars Watch Program. On that day we lost the Link Observatory, the Mount Wilson Observatory, as well as the Berlin and Osaka Observatories. The Martians seemed to understand these facilities were critical to our understanding of their home planet. It was at the Berlin Observatory we lost Dr. Tsiolkovsky who had stayed at the facility in order to co-ordinate some last minute observation data. The Committee had lost a very good friend.

Hours later we received a spot radio report indicating at least one and possibly two Martian Flying Machines had flown over Mars Radio Trap 4 in Phoenix, Arizona, and had been destroyed by ground launched rockets and anti-aircraft fire. The Martian craft had flown in close probably in response to their picking up the radio and radiation signals the trap was putting out. The first machine had been hit by ground fire and was seen flying north trailing smoke. The second had been destroyed when the explosives set into the trap itself detonated taking the Martian with it.

[END PART 62]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 63: Martian geologic attacks continue as the air attacks begin.]

R. Michael Gordon’s: The Aftermath of the War of the Worlds (Part-61)

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[PART 61]

Chapter 10

September 1938

The Final Conflict for Supremacy on Earth

THE SECOND MARTIAN WAR

“Ladies and gentlemen, I have a grave announcement to make. Incredible as it may seem…

those strange beings who landed on Earth tonight are the vanguard of an

invading army from the planet Mars. Once again the Earth is at war with Mars.”

Orson Welles

DAY ONE: 2 September 1938

The Martian Invasion Fleet Flies Towards Earth

Time had expired. The Mars Watch Program teams had given Earth the news the Martians were on the way. The telegraph and wireless which had spread around the world since the First Martian War would now flash the news to all corners of the Earth the war we had hoped to avoid was on the way. Even with that reality it was no real surprise to me to discover mankind’s hopes for a peaceful solution generally continued on even as that last vestige of hope melted away. For even when we knew an attack was coming many still had hope war could be averted. That is probably one of the traits mankind does not share with our enemies from Mars. (In numerous cities protesters seemingly came out of the woodwork demanding immediate negotiations with the Martians.) Yet even with all of our history with the Martians some people simply refused to believe it was real. After the public were notified the Martians were on the way there were more than a few suicides. Their minds wanted nothing to do with this bit of reality and as such some simply went insane. This second major attack coming to Earth from Mars had completely drained them of any hope of a normal life. For many there was no reason to believe otherwise and therefore no reason to live. Nevertheless, it was time to focus on what many knew would be the most deadly event in human history. Despite all of our work in the Committee and the work of millions around the world I had no reason to believe otherwise.

The Martians had run out of options and out of time. They had convinced themselves they had no other choice but to attack. There would be no negotiations. In their minds they had no other option than taking Earth by force. Global war had come. Their survival depended on this massive all-out attack on our planet and our future depended on its failure! Their last hope became all the more poignant when a Martian document discovered in one of their vehicles during the war revealed the Martians viewed Earth as “too hot, too near the sun, too bright, too thick an atmosphere and too heavy of gravity.” They did not want to live on Earth! They much preferred the “soft pink sky and cool red hills of home”.

We had built a world-wide military force unprecedented in Earth’s history. As far as the leadership of the Committee was concerned we felt we had done all we could to prepare our world and our people for the onslaught we knew was coming, but we had no real way of knowing if it would be enough? We would soon find out. The warning went out to all Committee and national military forces stationed around the world that the first of the Martian machines had nearly arrived. The battle for the fate of mankind was about to begin. It would be as the Romans had said; bellum terra marique, igne gladioque (war by land and sea with fire and sword).

From his re-enforced underground bunker at New Washington Center American President and Committee Prince Roosevelt remarked, “We will need everything we have and everything our allies have to defeat the Martians on all fronts and across the vast areas of our planet.”

For a brief moment I wondered whether or not when the time came for humans to move beyond our world, if indeed we someday had the opportunity to do so, would we be peaceful ambassadors of our species or as warlike and brutal as the Martians? Our short history on Earth does not yet fall on the peaceful side of that question. That brief moment was soon over. Now it was time to kill as many of those Martian bastards as we could get our bloody hands on. It truly was kill or be killed across the entire face of the Earth.

Instructions sent by wireless, cable and flash message by Directorate C-World Military Forces ordered all Committee units to operational status and on full alert. National governments were likewise informed as their forces went on full alert.

ALPHA FLASH: TO ALL COMMANDS: /…./. …/-.-/-.– ../… .-././-.. , –/…./. …/-.-/-.– ../… .-././-.. (THE SKY IS RED, THE SKY IS RED).

M-DAY

(Martian Invasion Day)

In this global conflict there would be no declaration of war.

As the Martian fleet approached near Earth space a steady stream of information was radioed into Committee and national monitoring stations from Mars observers around the world as well as from Defense 1. Earth’s only operational defense satellite had verified the size, trajectories and disposition of the Martian invasion fleet. The updated number now stood at 2168 approaching Martian spacecraft. After this vital information was delivered this man-made moon was re-positioned to perform its last critical duty.

Defense 1’s final operation was to send a powerful highly focused pulsed radio beam in the exact direction of the advancing Martians focusing on the spacecraft nearest the Earth. We were determined to strike the first blow even before the enemy was able to orbit our planet with their invading fleet. Tesla and his team had placed their most-secret device (which looked like a rectangular shaped open horn) on board which had been designed to blast the electronic communications equipment (and perhaps their main computers) onboard the advancing Martian spacecraft with a directed high energy radio beam aimed at the lead spacecraft. This was what Tesla and his teams had been working on and testing for years at Wardenclyffe. This device was the most powerful beam weapon the Tesla group could construct and needless to say it had never been tested in space. Ground based tests on 1901 era Martian communications equipment as well as man-made electronic devices could only demonstrate that the system worked in the atmosphere on Earth, not how well it could take on the Martians in space, and we only had one shot at it. If the Martians had upgraded their communications or computer systems and if they had taken the time to ‘harden’ those systems against such effects, it might not work at all.

Now would be its only real test. Southern Committee Headquarters in Lower-Sydney, in direct line of sight of Defense 1, fired off the radio command to activate the weapon and within minutes was able to verify that the powerful energy beam had indeed been fired at the advancing spacecraft. The system had worked – but did it hit the target and did it have any effect?

At first there were no indications it had any effect at all on the inbound spacecraft, however our deep space radars soon showed that several of the Martian spacecraft seemed to be going off course and would in fact miss Earth orbit entirely and swing back around the Earth being gravitationally deflected on an elliptical path back towards Mars. At least some of their controls had indeed been badly affected by the beam. It was soon verified that two of the lead spacecraft were most definitely in trouble and were heading directly for Earth’s upper atmosphere without slowing down. They were clearly out of control and were coming straight in without deviation. The tracking teams quickly reported seeing them on their radar screens breakup into multiple targets and disintegrate over the Pacific Ocean! Later we would be able to view movie footage of the spacecraft disintegrating as they came in. They apparently had no heat shields on the front of their spacecraft which allowed the frictional heat of entering Earth’s atmosphere to build up and devour the Martians. Defense 1 had successfully struck the first blow for our planet. To be honest I could not believe the damn thing had actually worked!

Martian spacecraft going off course and being destroyed in upper Earth atmosphere

Much later we would learn those two lead spacecraft held the Martian A Prime commander of the invasion fleet and its entire first line headquarters group! We would also learn this lead Martian spacecraft was the only one they had built for this invasion that had the same powerfully destructive beam weapon we had seen tested in orbit around Mars. With this one shot Earth had unknowingly destroyed the most powerful weapon they ever developed for planetary warfare. Tesla’s team had fulfilled its promise of overcoming this powerful weapon even though they had no reason to know at the time they had succeeded. We had gotten damn lucky on this one. Even with our ‘victory’ their second and third most powerful weapons were quite prepared to wreak havoc over vast portions of our planet!

Despite these early losses the Martians did not skip a beat as they continued to press their invasion. By radar count the next 11 Martian spacecraft nearest Earth must have been at least partially damaged as they were the ones which missed Earth orbit. No fewer than three radar stations confirmed the results sending reports to all commands. Our celebration was short lived. The battle for Earth had begun.

At exactly 1:06 a.m. London time (GMT) we lost radio contact with Defense 1. We knew the Martians had destroyed Earth’s only man-made defense satellite even though it was out of our radar range when it was destroyed. It did not take long for contact to be lost with four other satellites (non-defense related) we had also placed into orbit. The Martians had most likely destroyed them as well.

Almost as a solar greeting the Aurora Borealis lit up the Arctic ice of the northern hemisphere as the Aurora Austrialis danced over the skies of the Antarctic as the last Martian ships arrived in orbit. I wondered if the Martians believed it to be an omen. Within a few hours the only spacecraft orbiting Planet Earth had been launched from Mars – 2155 of them. At least 1000 were large transportation craft loaded with flyers and Walkers, as well as tens of thousands of combat troops. Earth orbital space had become a Martian domain. The Martians’ first objective had been easily accomplished. The enemy had arrived in battle formation and was ready to begin the conquest of planet Earth! They had complete command and control of Earth orbital space. We would wait for their first attacks, but not for much longer. If anything the Martians could be counted on being prompt.

The Martians planned their invasion down to the smallest detail, yet even with their immense intelligence we knew they were fallible and as mortal as man. The Martians brought to Earth, machines of unimaginable destructive power and in considerable numbers the likes of which mankind had never seen before even considering the First Martian War. If it turned out we could not defeat the Martian machines then we would have to defeat the Martians themselves. History was not on our side for we had done neither in 1901.

On 2 September 1938 at 2:40 a.m. GMT the Martians began their movements into medium Earth orbit as a preliminary operation to position their spacecraft for their attacks on the planet. We detected their approach angles of course and we knew they were now orbiting the Earth along polar orbits. They could use these polar orbits to drop out of space and attack any point on the face of the Earth. They had not done that in 1901. This was partial verification to our leadership that the Martians were still planning to use both the North and South Poles as command centers. We had no real proof as yet but would need to know for certain and soon. When these polar command centers were verified by scouts we would hopefully be able to deploy a few military surprises of our own against the Martians that if our understanding was correct would soon be occupying the high ice of planet Earth.

ALPHA FLASH: TO ALL COMMANDS: ENEMY NOW IN POLAR ORBIT – ATTACK IMMINANT – ALL SECTIONS TO DELTA OPERATIONS – GOOD LUCK AND GOOD HUNTING.

Earth Executes Defense Plan

(“Red Skies”)

At the designated signal it seemed the entire planet was on the move. General civilian and military radio transmissions on Earth slowly went dark (except the pre-planned Psyop broadcasts from our primary and secondary Mars Radio Traps which came on line slowly and in no particular order). All privately owned commercial radio stations were now ‘temporarily’ handed over to Committee or national governments for emergency broadcast reports for the duration of the war. Underground cities closed up most of their entrances (90% as planned as Lower-London nearly doubled its underground population as did most major underground cities) having completed their storage of vital food and other supplies. Above ground cities went to blackout conditions lighting up their decoy lighting systems and activating radio transmitters imbedded within the decoy lighted areas. Surface populations were being moved to ‘safe areas’. Tesla beam weapons on the outer lying areas of the twenty-five cities which had been supplied with them were fully charged on the tops of their towers and manned mostly by remote control. Black Smoke burn areas were activated and gas began to flow into the pipes. Ignition systems were set to go off automatically on the small fields constructed at crossroads inside the cities. Massive 250 ton concrete “Martian Walker Traps”, based on the Korean model, built to explosively collapse on the Martians as they crossed under selected tunnel traps leading into cities around the world as well as the underground command cities were armed to go off when either wires were tripped or when they were set off by local military forces. Fire/oil & tar trenches constructed around several cities were filled and ready to be set on fire if and when the Martians or their Black Smoke came their way.

Long range Committee Whitehead B4 jet bombers began an around the clock 20% air operation as the remaining bomber fleets were held in readiness in their hardened bunkers at locations around the world. These resources were tasked to mass bomb any Martian ground force assembling to attack. However, in the beginning most of these assembly areas would prove to be in remote Polar Regions beyond our capability to hit with bombers at least during the first few days of the war when Martian machines controlled much of Earth’s skies. Fighter aircraft went on patrol at a rate of 25% airborne at all times. Long range attack, supply and command submarines went underwater to began monitoring all news and burst reports; prepared to attack any and all Martian targets which happened to come their way. Submarines designated to help defend critical coastal cities left their ports to deploy just off shore. In New York City dock workers finished loading “the gadget” (Tunguska atomic bomb) on board its transport submarine (none of them knew what it really was) as the team readied for the critical mission of delivering the weapon to its staging area not yet known to the crew. The submarine now had a new name “CS Tunguska.”

COMMITTEE COMMAND CENTERS ASSUME REGIONAL COMMAND

Aircraft carriers already deployed to their pre-designated positions (205 aircraft carriers world-wide were deployed; the majority from the Committee, the United States, Great Britain, Japan and Germany) launched 1/3rd of their aircraft on patrol. The Airborne Magic Command Post (CP Magic) was launched with one Magic Director onboard, code named “Uranus”. (CP Magic was indeed a bit of man-made magic as it was the only aircraft of its kind designed to show as small a radar signature as possible as well as being coated with radar-absorbing metals and painted with black radar absorbing paint.) (A small number of special Phoenix IIAs were also similarly equipped.) “Uranus is in its element” was transmitted just after the airborne command post took off and went radio silent. The aircraft’s command position was a slow low altitude orbiting circle in the mid-Atlantic roughly between New London and New York City.

Each of the heavily armored command trains pre-positioned at Lower-New York City “Coffee Drinker”, Lower-London “Tea Drinker” and Lower-Sydney “Whisky Drinker” were manned and occupied by one each of the Magic Twelve and their immediate staffs ready to take command at a moment’s notice should the need arise. All three trains were on their way (“Drinkers are on a roll”) to camouflaged fortified train tunnels within a few miles of their Command Centers especially equipped with supplies and communication equipment to support the “Drinkers.” They would ‘plug in’ and draw power, communications and food from the equipment stored in the tunnels. Their primary tasks at this stage were to monitor all Martian activity, keep updated and stay in contact with the primary cities (Directors), and be prepared to take command in their designated areas if and when the need should arise. (In the event we lost the entire command group in the local primary command city this team would assume command.)

Stalin’s “Vodka Drinker” was standing by close to his bunker. It would not be going anywhere without him.

From this point on Directors would be addressed by their radio code names. In Lower-New York City the Prime Director became “Apollo’; my Lower-London code name became “Zeus”; in Lower-Sydney the Director became ‘Titan” with “Gemini” in command at Upola.

At sea CS Atlantic Ocean Director became “Poseidon”; the CS Pacific Ocean command was with “Triton” and the CS Indian Ocean Director was “Neptune”. Poseidon would command 110 submarines; Triton would command 143 with 104 under the command of Neptune.

Solid rocket missile batteries set to defend vital areas around the world locked into their short and long distance radar control systems and were fully manned. Surface to air missile batteries at Lower-London, Lower-New York City, Lower-Sydney and Lower-Upola were activated and ready to go. Backup cable and telephone communication systems were powered up and manned. All ground forces world-wide already deployed to pre-attack positions went on 50% alert status and radio silent monitoring. From this point on most radio communications with military air, sea and ground forces would be by burst message or by pre-positioned underground cables for ground forces. Ham Radio operators had already been instructed to transmit for no longer than 15 seconds at any one time and then shut down and go energy silent after vital information was sent. Thousands of private Ham Radio operators were now standing by and on the lookout for any local Martian activity. Their reports would be coordinated through one of our special Ham Radio listening stations set up to relay their information to Committee centers by secure cable.

Before the 1901 Martian War the world had been unaware that an enemy was even on the way and when war came there was very little mankind could do to defend themselves. This was not the case in 1938. Man could now fly and we felt we could match our flying skills with that of the Martian enemy at least in the atmosphere and make them pay dearly for every life taken, every inch of ground lost. We had taken what we could from Martian technology and made it our own and we would put every scrap of technology we could into this fight. We felt we had the means to defeat their deadly Black Smoke, and Red Weed and we had matched their walking machines with some of our own, including to some extent their deadly Heat-Rays. (Tesla had originally designated his weapon a death ray.) We had submarines the Martians were not expected to know how to defeat and we had rockets to bloody the Martians better than the simple cannon and machine-guns we had brought into the fight of 1901. We had broken the Martian language and military codes and we knew a great deal about what they had planned. And we had one more critical weapon in 1938 we did not possess in 1901 – the knowledge that we had a real fighting chance of defeating the Martians on our terms and we were determined to prove that conviction to every Martian we could lay our hands on. They would begin their invasion with 2155 of their deadly advanced flying machines of several designs and sizes and we would be keeping close track of how fast we could lower that count. In short, we had no idea what they were about to unleash on our planet. It soon became clear we would need to change our plans fast if we had any chance of survival. After the first shot was fired most of our war plans went out the window.

[END PART 61]

Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 62: The Martian first wave.]

LA’s Top 5 Speakeasy

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During the times of Prohibition, men and women found solace hidden in rooms to consume their liquid demons. I’m not judging, but hey that was just the times. These various secret liquor establishments, dotted the urban landscape we all know as Los Angeles. Even after getting White Girl Wasted, our inner human spirit always yearns for the antique stored away for only a select to find. Plus, we like visiting a place stowed away from the world – to sip an expensive cocktail with international hipsters can romanticize a Tuesday night, celebrating four more Instagram followers, and the fifty nine Likes on that Redondo beach volleyball picture. Here are my top five Speakeasies in LA, and the surrounding vicinity.

The Slipper Clutch

351 S. Broadway, Los Angeles CA

Walking distance from most downtown restaurants, makes this secret gem, a popular after dinner sip spot. The pool table and old school video games resonate with that teenager inside us all, who used to sneak the Rolling Rock from Dad’s secret cooler. The waitstaff is very friendly, which is always a plus in an allegedly illegal bar. You don’t want people spilling the bean. The Punk atmospheres invites in all walks of life, who enjoy a great grungy bar. I recommend you go down and clutch a PBR or three!

Was I trying too hard?

La Descarga

N. Western Ave, Los Angeles CA

The Havana inspired interior makes you forget you’re in LA. Instead, you are drinking in a pre – Che’ bar, listening to the rhythmic congo beats, escaping the drummers’ soft palms. There is a dress code, and of course cigars. What would anything Cuban be without a nice, fat Cohiba? This Spanish wine bar brings you back to a time of Caribbean class. For the experienced vino drinker, who likes a dark, smoky elegant space with great food – La Descarga is worth a shot. A shot of wine! Can you shoot wine? Don’t forget the burlesque show. Hubba, Hubba.

Good Times at Davey Wayne’s

1611 N El Centro, Los Angeles

During the times of Bell Bottoms and Threes Company, they probably drank at a little spot like this one. This retro seventies styled bar, brings you to the days of old school TV shows. I felt as if David Banner or the Six Million dollar man would have thrown down a few Jack and Cokes here at one time. I channeled Jack Tripper as I drank in the surroundings – at Good Times at Davey Wayne’s. If that don’t scream Hotel California, I don’t know what does? What other LA bar boasts an Airstream trailer and BBQ in the city of Angels? It’s like Uncle Phil is having a pool party, but he’s charging for the Brewskis. You can’t have a bad times at Good Times at Davey Wayne’s.

If you do, it’s on you bro.

The Exhibition Room

1117 Wardlow Rd, Long Beach, CA

First (Yes there are steps to this)

You must enter Roxanne’s bar – an eclectic bar which also serves various delicious dishes. The interior is Roadster meets Hipster with a stage and live music, which is played on certain days. If that does not captivate your attention, head to the back, passed the pool table. Off to the corner you will notice a phone.

Second.

Pick up that phone, ramble back a code, and someone let’s you enter a secret room. Inside that room is a dark, upscale bar, which serves some of the best cocktail in the greater LA area. Usually on the weekend, there is some sort of entertainment for your enjoyment, while you sip on the local mixologist’s work of art. The once hidden bar hidden; in a bar – is hidden – no longer.

You’re welcome.

Varnish

118 E. 6th, Los Angeles, CA

Descend the stairs into Coles, down below the tourist strewn streets of Los Angeles. Coles, is a subterranean sports bar with antiquated atmosphere sifting in from the forties. Go around the bar, to the back by the bathrooms – a small door takes you to the almost light-less interior of Varnish. When I think of an authentic Speakeasy this is the kind of place that comes to my mind. With the exception of the Hipsters of course, but what would LA be without them? The inside of Varnish has a rustic feel – illuminated almost exclusively by candle light. It possess a comfortable, safe feeling, like nothing from the streets can get you, because they will eat everyone at Coles beforehand. LA Zombies. If you’re lucky – maybe a band or two will grace your eardrum with some beautiful crooning. Varnish is my favorite Speakeasy.

So, take it easy.

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