[PART 15]


The Martians themselves were back on the Earth if only for short visits and they were ready to kill again. The body of a dead Martian B found near the mining disaster had told us that. It proved they had direct contact with their “agents” on Earth. The Martians were also sending raiding expeditions to Earth thought to be later based somewhere in a northern areas of Earth to attack selected targets and acquire water and human hostages before the expected main Martian attack force was built and ready to be deployed. As I mentioned earlier, these attacks made it clear the Martians themselves were not ready for full-scale operations, but hit-and-run attacks were ongoing as they continued to take advantage of our weakened social and military structures. What we did not know at the time was exactly where in hell they were coming from? (Mars of course, but from what Earth based point of operation. We had not yet thought that they were possibly in Earth orbit.) At the time we had no way of tracking them and even if we could we had nothing to fly up against them in 1906. We were still deaf, dumb and blind, and when it came to Martians, we were still practically unarmed. Only the bacteria on planet Earth were keeping the Martians at bay, at least over most of the planet for any length of time. This was not a practical or acceptable defense strategy by any means. We had in fact advanced little in the way of planetary defense since 1901.

We did have one advantage. The Martians now realized that while they were on Earth for short stays they needed to stay in very cold climates and they had to return often to the atmospheric gases held within their spacecraft to stay alive (Ref: Martian Electric Document 442B61). We had recently come to the same conclusion. So naturally we understood they could operate easier in colder areas of Earth both north and south as well as in high mountainous terrain. That they did not have a viable vaccine yet was little consolation. They were still attacking at least on a limited basis. We would soon be sending teams to both poles to discover whether or not any Martians “had set up camp on the high ice.”

Mechanically and scientifically they were very advanced and they were very strong. Physically they were very weak and they knew it. Defeating them would be relatively easy if we could find ways to defeat their machines. That was the primary task ahead. In 1906 we had no way of knowing how to do this even though we had no lack of ideas. Adding to our problems came the realization that when the Martians returned they were probably going to deploy even more powerful weapons on Earth than they had during the recent war. We soon found out what they were truly capable of. And if they hit us with many more of these devices we would not stand a chance.

The Committee was now ready to begin bringing the fight to the Martians by developing the first teams specifically dedicated and trained to fighting the Martians and their allies on Earth any way and any place they found them.

The Tango Group

“We must establish a team of highly trained men dedicated to tracking down and destroying any and all Martians or Martian allies presently operating on planet Earth.”

Director C

Now fully aware that an organized group of “Martian” terrorists were attacking targets on Earth the Committee assembled a special new team consisting of military intelligence personnel, Martian specialists, as well as combat and psychological operations personnel whose only job at the time was to track down and kill as many members of the Martian Brotherhood as they could find. This “Black Operations Group”, as it would later be called, was formed under Directorate C and would be internally known as the “Tango Group”. We were now ready to acknowledge, at least within the confines of the Committee, that we were once again in an active war with Mars. No announcement was made to the people of Earth. Even the designation “Tango Group” was classified. The original sign on the door read “Special Research Group 20,” but that would change every so often. Later, these specially trained men would expand their operations and go after the Martians directly, once again, whenever and wherever they found them.

Within the Tango Group was Tango Teams 1 through 4. These Tango Teams reported to Directorate C and consisted of 100 members each. Membership within Tango was classified most-secret and only the Committee knew they were based in Lower-London for Teams 1 and 2 at “CP Tango” (Command Post Tango) with Teams 3 and 4 based in Lower-New York City at “OP Tango” (Out Post Tango). Two new Tango Teams, Teams 5 and 6, would be formed later and stationed in Lower-Sydney “FB Tango” (Fire Base Tango) and “SF Tango” (Strike Force Tango) stationed on Upolu Island, Samoa. It would not take long for the Tango Group to score their first successful operation. Their first targets would be the “Primary Five” and they had no plans to take any of them alive! Terminal force was fully authorized.

Operational Commander of Tango forces was the ‘Prince’ of Directorate C. Even though this was an international organization, and it was not written anywhere, it was certainly understood by the membership the Tango Operational Commander would always be from Great Britain, Canada, Australia or the United States. That was simply the way it was.

However, membership in Tango was not restricted to a few nations it was open to anyone who had the skills and dedication to do the job. Because it was a most secret organization one did not ‘volunteer’ for Tango. Rather, high level military commanders, usually members of the Committee, submitted names of military officers and NCOs who had the skills and background to fit into this very tight organization. More than simple tactical skills and battle-tested strengths were required to be in Tango. Members had to show language skills (English was a requirement), score high on newly developed intelligence tests and survive a rather tortuous series of training regiments developed to weed out the weak in mind and body. Much of the work involves cold weather training as their expected adversaries are quite accustomed to the cold. Because of this training, for every ten who were selected for Tango evaluation and testing only one would be selected for final membership. One of the most admired traits of those who “made the grade” was the fact that no matter what rank a member of Tango had all members were fully trained and prepared to take command of any situation at any time and operate independently when required for long periods of time without orders or additional support from Tango Headquarters. With Martians, or at least their hybrid surrogates, seemingly running about this was a decided advantage, and these skills would be severely tested in the years to come.

If the candidate was successful and passed all of the tests and intense examinations the soldier’s military records were changed to indicate he had left the military of whatever nation he came from. Whatever records existed they were ‘purged’ so as to keep his highly clandestine work secret. After the records process is complete the newly accepted ‘trainee’ is put through a six-month training program at the Committee’s training center (known simply as “the Farm”) located in a wooded area north of New Washington Center. The training included sniper training as all Tango ‘operators’ were to qualify as snipers. From there members go through a final two month course of code communication, Martian language training (rather primitive at the start of operations), infiltration techniques and interrogation studies at the Martian language Center north of New London. The final week finds the new Tango member taking part in a live fire deep penetration training exercise in one of a number of areas in various sites around the world. Later teams would do their final “training” deep inside one of the three Lawless Zones yet to be designated.

After this intense period of training the new Tango member is awarded his Tango insignia, crossed sabers on a ‘T’ over a globe of the Earth, but it was never actually worn on any uniform outside of their command center (that changed in 1933) and assigned to a Tango Team. As for the “uniform,” it was just about anything the men decided to wear. A member of Tango was never out of uniform. Yet, even as we were putting this special team together the Martians were about to unleash a whole new type of weapon on the people of Earth. Only much later would we understand that when it came to these destructive devices “we the people” was only a secondary target.


Even though we now knew the Martians were still flying reconnaissance and resource missions to Earth, we had no information indicating that they were prepared to conduct a series of geologic attacks on our planet until the San Francisco ‘attack’ of 18 April 1906. (These would actually be a continuation of a long series of these types of attacks conducted against planet Earth by the Martians over many centuries.) For that matter we had no idea this type of attack was even scientifically possible. This attack took us completely by surprise. This would be the event which not only opened our eyes to this new level of warfare it was also the event which forced the Committee to review the historic records in the hope of discovering any previous Martian instigated geologic attacks. What we eventually found was a terrifyingly long list of geologic events, which could be directly or indirectly tied to the Martians. We would soon be forced to acknowledge they had been attacking the planet for a very long time. It would seem Earth had been their testing ground, and we had no reason to believe they were about to stop anytime soon. Part of my work at the time was to produce short briefings on these new discoveries that were coming in very fast.

We had to change our whole way of thinking. With that in mind I remembered part of a lecture given in 1895 at Harvard University by philosopher and psychologist Dr. William James. He had not survived the war but his words were certainly something to consider in light of Martian realities.

There is included in human nature an ingrained naturalism and materialism of mind, which can only admit facts that are actually tangible. Of this sort of mind the entity called ‘Science’ is the idol. Fondness for the word scientist is one of the notes by which you may recognize its votaries; and its short way of killing any position it disbelieves is to call it unscientific.

Using captured Electric Documents, many of which at the time we could barely understand (Ref: Martian Electric Documents 11D114 and 11D186), we soon discovered a long term plan to destroy as much of humanity as possible using our own planet against us as well as a plan to cool the planet down to Martian standards. Using war to thin the Earth’s population was not the only method they were using. We were beginning to realize just how advanced these creatures were and how well they planned. To be able to affect such large geologic areas and to be able to command such energies was truly impressive. They were indeed a formidable enemy, and one that could field weapons we could only dream of, and some we couldn’t. It certainly made one wonder why they had not been able to use their advanced knowledge to stay on Mars? Perhaps it was only possible to extend their stay for a short period of time. The real question was: What other weapons did they possess that we have not even suspected? It was going to be a long and hard fought recovery to say the least and every indication was it was going to cost more lives, probably millions of them. I tried and often failed to push that out of my mind.

For decades before the earthquake of 1906, beginning around 1870, a series of small quakes had been felt in the area around northern California (still thought to have been natural events by some investigators even though there had been accompanied by an increase in reported unknown aerial activity in the general area) – indeed more during that period than for any other time records have been kept. The general area along the fault was being twisted and warped under tremendous strain. There had also been several well-documented reports of aerial craft over and near the city of San Francisco for a few months preceding the ‘attack.’ Much the same as the ones reported in the 1890s. These were warnings – tests if you will – but we had no way of knowing what they meant as far as any Martian involvement was concerned. Hell, we did not even suspect this type of weapon existed, or for that matter that Martians actually existed at the time, so we suspected nothing. Nevertheless, we were about to find out just how much power the Martians could truly project on Earth and for them this was only a test! The ‘test site’ would be the most populated city on the west coast of America. As Caruso slept, having sung the night before, the largest earthquake in modern Earth history struck San Francisco.

Twenty-five seconds before the main event a foreshock was felt shortly before sunrise. A few local witnesses would later report seeing unusual lights on the ground near the event. One early radio experimenter in California also showed a strong burst of radio waves on his equipment at the time. It is now believed this foreshock was the setting off of the Martian devices, which had been buried along the San Andreas Fault, a major boundary between the Pacific region and North America. As they released their energy this tear in the Earth’s crust began to weaken. A sharp massive tremor was soon felt followed by a bumpy roll. At 5:12 a.m. on Wednesday, 18 April 1906, the great San Francisco Quake struck with a magnitude of 7.9 on the Professor Thomas scale. Within 25 seconds the work had been done as the crushing earthquake jarred the sleeping city. (This is a logarithmic scale where a 6 would be ten times more powerful than a 5.) The primary geologic event was centered two miles off of San Francisco Bay and lasted for 42 seconds ripping a section of the fault for 296 miles! Some sections of the fault had moved 20 or more feet during the primary event. Other areas had been deformed only to snap back into place. It had been so strong that the Salinas River, which had previously emptied into Monterey Bay, was diverted to the ocean north of Marina nearly 6 miles south of where it had originally flowed! It was so powerful the main event was felt from Los Angeles to Oregon and as far inland as central Nevada. The displacement of the fault had been the longest in recorded history at the time.

Destroyed City Hall in San Francisco, California
Destroyed City Hall in San Francisco, California

The City of San Francisco, which had earlier been mostly by-passed by major attacking Martian forces even though it had not escaped undamaged (They were picking their shots. Some members felt they had left San Francisco ‘relatively’ undamaged to use as a test bed for later seismic operations), and thus becoming a major port on the west coast for recovery operations, was now in a shambles, but the worst was yet to come. The newly built 7 million dollar City Hall had nearly collapsed. Other new buildings such as the Croker Bank Building, the mint, post office, the St. Francis Hotel and its new steel-framed James Flood Building were destroyed and on fire. The event had torn up streets and rail lines, ruptured gas and water lines and caused general damage over a wide area.

After the major shaking ended the fires began which would go on for three days. (‘Natural’ aftershocks would continue for months.) It would be these uncontrollable fires, which would do much of the damage to the city. A massive fire blazed just south of Market Street consuming almost all of lower San Francisco. Crews were soon dynamiting rows of structures in the path of the fires to rob the flames of fuel and slow the devastation. The jury is still out on whether or not this added to the destruction or aided the fires as they continued to burn for three days. Finally, on the fourth day rains came to the devastated city and the fingers of the fires ended their advances.

Some 80% of the city was destroyed by the quake and fire yet ‘only’ 3000 were killed out of a population of 410,000. If the Martians had hoped for massive casualties they had made an error in their calculations as many of the buildings had stood the quake. The fact that most of the population had survived these events made it possible for the city to rebuild quickly. The first area to be rebuilt had to be the port facility, as it was critically needed to supply the rebuilding effort ongoing along the entire west coast as well as San Francisco. Despite the disaster and the general disruption still keenly felt from the war, the first relief ship was able to dock in San Francisco only days after the quake as all doctors were given a Red Cross arm band and began their great work.

The Los Angeles Times – 19 April 1906


San Francisco Nearly Destroyed By Earthquake and Fire.
Hundreds of Killed and Injured – Destruction of Other Coast Cities.

SAN FRANCISCO, April 19. (Associated Press) – It looks now as if the entire city would be burned, following the great quake of yesterday. The government is furnishing tugs to convey news to Oakland, but the confusion is so great that they cannot be relied upon. It will be impossible to send full details for several days.

The latest reports from Leland Stanford University indicate that the magnificent stone buildings of that institution have suffered severe damage. Many of the buildings were ruined by cracks, which split them from cornice to foundation.

At 10 o’clock at night, the fire was unabated, and thousands of people are fleeing to the hills and clamoring for places on the ferry boats.

Under the fierce heat of the sun today, 29 bodies lay in Washington Square, where they were taken at the order of the Mayor when the morgues and Hall of Justice basement held all that could be cared for. In the mad confusion and helpless horror of this night uncounted bodies of dead men and women are lying in morgues and under un-uplifted walls. It is believed that nearly 1000 lives have been lost.

American President Theodore Roosevelt was quick to wire his concerns and offering his assistance to the governor of California.

It was difficult at first to credit the catastrophe that has befallen San Francisco. I feel the greatest concern and sympathy for you and the people, not only of San Francisco, but of California in the terrible disaster. You will let me know if there is anything that the national government can do.

Aid was soon flowing into San Francisco from Los Angeles as the people of “LA” recalled the massive aid sent to them by the people of San Francisco after the Martians left it devastated. It was now Los Angeles’s turn to help the people “up north” and they came through magnificently. Los Angeles soon became a major clearing house for recovery supplies along the west coast of the United States while San Francisco rebuilt its port facilities. However, no such aid could come from San Diego as it had all but been deserted after the war. There was no longer a San Diego, California!

Well trained Committee rescue teams as well as local Red Cross volunteers soon set up tent cities in and around San Francisco as well as mobile medical teams, a large tent hospital and several feeding centers. Patrols were soon sent out to capture looters who were usually shot on sight. We also sent out investigation teams (CAIG) who quickly learned there had been considerable “unidentified aero craft” reports for months in and around the area before the earthquake hit including several in the early morning just before the event. One such report led investigators to a location five miles south of the city where it was clear that an object about the length of a horseless carriage had been forcefully driven into the ground. It was also clear it had to have been “delivered” from the air as the ground around the site had been disturbed by the impact of the object, much like a small lunar crater. It would take two weeks for the teams to dig deep enough to find the object and pull it out of the ground. As they pulled it out of the pit the teams could still feel the “object” vibrating. This was clearly a Martian geologic seismic device, even though it was the first one we had ever seen. They had found one of the smoking guns, and it was still smoking!

The teams would soon bring the device to the Committee laboratory in Lower-New York City to disassemble in order to learn as much as we could from back engineering the Martian device. Dr. Tesla’s teams went right to work on it. “Perhaps the Martians do not realize how much help they are rendering to their enemies on Earth by using devices that we later investigate. Perhaps with their ‘help’ we shall be able to deliver a few surprises of our own when the time comes.” That work would take years before we could truly say we had any kind of understanding of the way the device operates. In the end we would develop a new weapon that could be used against our enemies from Mars.

My notes revealed: “…and if such a device can be developed for use by mankind will we be able to deploy such a device in any type of military manner? To use on Mars in a future attack perhaps?”

In all, 490 city blocks encompassing approximately 25,000 buildings were destroyed along with many ruptured gas lines that caused many of the fires. Water lines had ruptured which prevented the fires from being put out. However, if the Martians thought the destruction brought to this American west coast city would stamp out the will of those people they would have been sadly disappointed. Signs were soon up advertising for new business, one of which was photographed and sent around the world with pride from the people of San Francisco. It read, “Come to the new San Francisco and see the best damn ruins in the west!”

The new city of San Francisco would once again show the Martians mankind could recover with speed and a great deal of determination and something a Martian would never have understood – a human sense of humor! This thinking must have completely confused war planners on Mars who were certain to receive reports from hybrids working for them in the city. Earth had lost another city working hard to recover from the war, yet before the dust had cleared they were putting up signs and enjoying lunch out in the open. The first outdoor concert was held eleven days after the disaster. There was dancing in the streets! Ten days after the fires had been put out the first cable car began to make runs up and down the newly cleared streets.

One story that never made the papers about the San Francisco event was the story of the three hybrids that had been captured by a mob of men just south of the city. They had been captured carrying several bars of gold said to have been taken from one of the destroyed banks in the city. It took no more than a few minutes for the mob to find a rope and hang all three hybrids from a tree. The gold was subsequently returned to San Francisco.

As fate would have it a group of railroad men from the Union Pacific and Southern Pacific railroads had just established what they called the Pacific Fruit Express. The idea was to provide fresh fruit grown in California to the rest of the recovering nation. With the rail system then in place it was easy to use that system to transport much needed supplies into San Francisco. A year after the event the Pacific Fruit Express was once again in operation with well over 6,600 cars. In 1915 the newly re-built city would host a World’s Fair.

During a later visit President Roosevelt would survey the damage and praise the citizens for their recovery efforts. He also looked to the future telling the people of San Francisco, “Our place is and must be with the nations that have left indelibly their impress on the centuries.”

After the quake was evaluated, engineers and geologists from the Committee reported underground facilities now being constructed needed to be greatly strengthened against this type of attack. We had done some reinforcing after the Courrieres Mine disaster, but with this new understanding of geological Martian technical ability we needed a fresh new look. Without the San Francisco quake we certainly would not have built our new underground or above ground cities anywhere near as strongly as we eventually did. We overbuilt the hell out of them. Nothing was going to destroy the underground facilities at least – and I mean nothing! We were still learning what the Martians were capable of and we expected to learn much more before we ended our “relations” with the Martians.

As for the Martians themselves – they had no idea just how much we mere humans were learning from them and we were not about to tell them. Nevertheless, what was most terrifying was that even though a vast majority of Martian forces were still on Mars this interplanetary enemy was quite capable of inflicting major damage on Earth from such distances and there was very little we could do about it at the time. That had to change and fast. The one ray of hope, if one may refer to it as such, was the fact that there had not been more of these attacks. This was cause to believe the Martians were indeed working with limited resources. If they were not, then surely many more of these attacks would have been forthcoming since they had no trouble at all showing up at any place on Earth for short periods of time. It could of course also mean they were putting most of their efforts into building a massive invasion fleet!

We had no idea how many of these very destructive seismic devices the Martians could bring to Earth and deploy. Certainly they had used them very sparingly so far, but no one in the Committee believed it would remain the case during any future conflict with the residents of Mars. We needed to work on how we could defeat these Martian devices. It was one more problem we needed to address when it came to the ever expanding Martian problem. Later, as we were able to research this situation it became evident that the Martians had used these very destructive devices in the past, perhaps many times in our past history. One very probable attack occurred in 1556 possibly initiating the Shaanxi Earthquake in China that took the lives of over 800,000 people and possibly 400,000 more due to starvation brought on by the devastation. We were learning the Martians had been a problem for a very long time.

Editor’s Note: This seismic attack on San Francisco was the first Martian attack conducted by new Sky Forces sent by Mars Prime as they began the orbital build-up of military resources around Earth – The local build-up of Martian forces would continue slowly for many years including small short term operations on the surface but would not consist of major elements until just before ground operations began in full during the Second Terrain War.


Seeing the possibility of unrest brought on by concerns about further Martian attacks which had been enhanced by hundreds of new ‘Unidentified Flying Object’ (UFO) reports, even though the general public was still unaware of any Martian involvement in the San Francisco event as well as several other suspected attacks, newspapers were ‘asked’ to publish portions of a lengthy interview with a group of unnamed Committee scientists who assured the public there was no longer any major threat from the Martians, at least for many years to come. We needed to keep a lid on things. A suggestion to begin publication of a weekly Committee newspaper was rejected as it was felt to be too much exposure for the Committee as we were trying to publicly downplay our involvement in world affairs. Discretion and a low profile were keys to our ever expanding operations. “Our work will necessitate that as time goes on we members of the Committee must back into the shadows even as our power and control continue to increase.”

The articles stressed the biological angle well known to have killed most of the Martians as proof that if they were to return once again they would all die – so why bother to attack? ‘Tough’ questions were posed to the three scientists who naturally had very good reasons to relate to the readers that no Martian attack could possibly come in our lifetimes. It was complete propaganda of course, but it was damned effective propaganda. The articles wired to many newspapers around the world had a generally calming effect on people who read the reports. Re-wiring the world was starting to pay dividends.

The New London Times – 19 June 1906


Now Focused on Their Planet’s Needs.
Continue to Build for Survival on Mars.

New London: AFTER much study and review Committee scientists working on what has been called “The Martian Problem” have concluded the threat once posed by the inhabitants of Mars appears to no longer exist. There appears to be no evidence of further hostile intent by the Martians on Earth. Due to the continuing decline of the supporting environment on Mars it has been reported by Committee insiders that much of the effort that had been expended upon planetary attacks is now being spent on survival on and under the planet’s surface. With much work needed on canals and construction of expanded underground facilities on Mars it has been estimated the Martian work force is not sufficient to continue building on Mars and focusing on another planetary invasion at the same time. Reduced resources indicate they had to decide on further aggression or building their underground cities. Several observers have reported there is much work in the area around Chryse Regio. Several other areas are also seen to be quite active. Other canal areas appear to have been “turned off” as some appear to fade from telescopic view from time to time. Scientists report that whole sections of these canals are taken out of use for long periods of time as long as two years as others come on line to take their place. It is suggested the canals need constant attention in order to stay in use.

Experts in Martian studies have reviewed many of the now translated Martian so-called ‘electric documents’ and have found references that indicate their attacks on Earth used a very large amount of the Martian’s planetary resources – now lost to them. The overall difficulty of building, arming, training and flying an invasion force seems to have led to plans which allowed only one attempt now lost. If they were to attempt another invasion experts have reported it could not be expected for at least another 50 years.

There is of course the well-known fact that the bacteria which we have long become accustom is lethal to the Martians which would make any further attacks on Earth one of pure suicide. It is not felt the Martians would attack the Earth simply to kill humans knowing they would have nothing to gain for their efforts. They are indeed brutal, but practical at the same time.

The only question seems to be why the Martians have not contacted representatives of Earth by wireless or other means. No one seems able to answer that question at this time, but we are informed by Committee sources the communication issue is being studied. It has been suggested when we are able to increase our ability to send and receive wireless messages in the future an effort could be made to contact the Martians and perhaps work out some sort of peaceful relationship. That event could occur as early as 10 to 15 years from now so we have a good amount of lead time to study the situation before making peaceful contact.

On a related matter it is also stated by sources within the Committee that reports of Martian craft flying in Earth’s atmosphere are completely false. The Committee spokesman stated there are no credible reports yet known of any Martian flying craft since the end of the war. The inside source further stated that mankind have reported aerial craft in the skies for hundreds if not thousands of years before any Martian appeared so one need not be concerned by whatever happens to be reported. He reminded readers that several well-known scientists are themselves involved in flying projects such as Mr. Whitehead, the Wright Brothers and many others. Many of these scientists work on flying projects that are kept close to the vest.

This lengthy article (of which I had a small part) was followed up by later published interviews every six months to a year to continue the propaganda that mankind no longer had anything to fear from the Martians. It was of course all a lie. Directorate L was doing its job quite well as they kept the lid on the truth about the Martians who continued to attack Planet Earth and kidnap and kill people. The only question was: How long could we keep this false story going? On the good side if we could show the people just how strong our world military forces were when they eventually learned about the Martian attacks it would go far to alleviate some of the fear. On that note we had a long way to go before we could cross swords with the Martians. The Brotherhood hybrids were another matter entirely. We were going to locate and kill as many of those who hated mankind as we could and as fast as possible. Tango got the call.


Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 16: Some prime numbers as science advances.]