[PART 8]


“The war strode in havoc through the lives of millions.

We must make the best of what is left among the ruins, bury the dead, and press on.”

Committee member Winston Churchill

Many ancient peoples around the world including the Navajo, the Hindus and Mayers believed that four World Ages existed before now as great civilizations of man developed before they were destroyed. If they were correct then our long climb back to civilization would number as the fifth World Age for mankind. After rescue efforts did whatever it could do for the living we shifted our efforts to recovery. My job was to keep track of recovery operations in our new records branch. Without accessible records we were not going very far. Clearing the debris, burying or burning the dead, opening up the shipping lanes, rebuilding the railways, planting crops and repairing communication cables were primary to the recovery programs developed under the new international group. We also needed to repair our manufacturing bases around the world in order to create the tools we would need to get the job done. The Committee soon established the World Industrial Recovery Administration, the World Farm Recovery Administration as well as the World Railway Recovery Administration and the World Defense Production Administration. Finally, the Committee put together the World Shipping Recovery and Development Administration. It was vital to reestablish trade routes, which included food, seeds, and vital fuels as soon as possible. It was necessary to take possession of basic crops as soon as they were harvested with a small payment to the farmers to cover their costs. No one was going to get rich off the land for a while at least.

However there was one very deadly aspect, which could not be prevented by any kind of law no matter how much we tried. That was the prevention of diseases spreading in many areas simply because there were not enough people to go around dealing with the bodies or any other type of sanitation work required. In Old London as elsewhere many bodies were not buried deep enough as ravaging animals exposed bones and flesh once again to the air. In and around London teams of men went out to shoot and bury as many wild dogs as they could find. More than a few dogs and horses became food themselves. Soon humanity would be dealing with diseases, which would decrease our wounded population even further. It was not too surprising to learn that as civilization began to implode after the war outbreaks of several deadly diseases occurred in many widespread areas. The bacterial diseases had saved the Earth from the Martians along with other diseases, which had in times past ravaged mankind with and without aid from the Martians, would now spread across the globe and begin their work on a weakened species of biped struggling to survive after much of what they had known was no longer there.

General sanitation and clean water supplies were grave problems. It was expected that epidemics of Typhoid, Cholera and other diseases would occur if sanitary conditions could not be reestablished with all due haste. Needless to say, areas, which had the greatest destruction, our centers of population, projected the greatest possibility for the spread of disease. We made certain that the people understood that Typhoid fever was passed from one person to another by the ingestion of water and food that had been contaminated by the feces of an infected person. The bacterium was Salmonella typhi. Flying insects could also transfer the diseases by feeding on the feces. Washing one’s hands and careful preparation of food were the best ways to avoid this problem. As with Typhoid fever, Cholera would become a major health problem becoming a major cause of death around the world for many months after the war. As above it was transmitted by contaminated water and food. Anyone can catch a case of cholera by drinking contaminated water. Proper sanitation was once again the key. Even with that tens of thousands would die from the intestinal bacterium of Cholera alone, and it kills very fast from complete dehydration. In the central Congo region some 23,800 would die in the first month. “Only the strong would survive.” It sounded a bit tough, but it was on the spot. The mortality rate was 50% if it was not treated. Recovery involves ingestion of plenty of liquids and salt. Even Committee members were not immune, as Dr. Tesla became an early victim of the disease requiring months to recover.

Cholera (Vibrio cholerae) has been around and killing people since before Hippocrates wrote about it in antiquity. (Was it originally introduced by the Martians? There would eventually be some evidence discovered in the years to come that it was indeed a possibility that these aliens had crossed the ethereal borders of space with infections in their bodies in ancient times only to infect the people of Earth.) However, it did not spread great distances until 1817 when infected missionaries and traders carried it from India to other parts of the world. By the 1830s it had reached New Orleans in America where some 5000 were killed in one year. Old New York would see its worst pre-Martian War epidemic in 1866 just after the end of the American Civil War. Great devastation and cholera seemed to go hand-in-hand. It should also be noted more often than not when devastating diseases appeared reports of unidentified craft in the skies seem to be part of the historic mix.

Interestingly, some of the more primitive isolated locations in North Africa, isolated islands, or areas deep into dense jungle did not suffer nearly as much as the advanced nations as the Martians had not spent enough effort as yet in those areas (a critical piece of intelligence into their tactical operations), tending to concentrate their attacks on cooler and greater populated areas on Earth first in order to decrease the ability of us mere humans to defend ourselves. It was expected these outlying areas would command Martian attention after major population centers had been neutralized by their fighting machines. They never got the opportunity to continue their plans, at least not yet.

Instructions on basic sanitation were written up by doctors and sent out to as many areas as could receive primitive wireless or by cable. “Bury or burn the dead fast” was but one of the instructions sent out on the few operational frequencies and over patched up cables. For the most part the people were also told to boil their drinking water, which helped a bit, but was not a cure; check for infections in wounds and be advised they were on their own until help could arrive – date unknown. They were also told to elect local leaders and take control of the local situation. What remained of the International Red Cross began to assess what they could do, but without the ability to move desperately needed relief supplies to many outlying areas that were soon in short supply there was little to be done. “Stand and work in place” was the order of the day. International efforts would have to wait. This was a come as you are affair that many would not live to ‘enjoy’. This did not stop what seemed an army of women led by 81-year-old Florence Nightingale from organizing welfare and nursing efforts in as many areas as they could. Most of the organizing was conducted by the few wireless transmitters and cable resources still available, but it did not take long for real results to surface.

One of the first efforts made by the Committee was to ascertain where shipping resources were located, which ports were still operational and how much transportation was available on land and sea to move food, medical and other supplies where they were needed most. Directorate B had a big job to do and very little time to do it. Critical work to be done was to set up a new series of wireless (radio) Morse code relay transmitters and repair cables in order to make contact with ports around the world to obtain the information they needed to begin the movement of critical supplies. We also needed to ascertain how many people were available to do the work, and to find out how much damage the Martians had caused. With no commercial radio stations operating in those dark early days news to and from outer areas was slow to circulate. When the news came it was usually bad. Most areas would be “on their own” for a long time; months at least. The one piece of good news was that general shipping in open ocean areas had not been a primary target of the Martian attack fleet so we soon discovered we had more ships than we would have expected. The problem was where to dock them and how to find enough manpower to work the cargo!

Many areas would for a time need to rely heavily upon hunting and gathering which could sustain them for a while, but it was only a temporary solution. Even local zoos served as ‘hunting grounds’ for starving people. Studies already known to the Committee showed that hunter-gathering populations needed one square mile to support two people in a savanna environment and no more than ten people per square mile in lush environments. Other means would need to be put into place with some speed. Even though some areas could rely upon stored food supplies for a while, agriculture and ranching would need to be put back into place if we were to advance beyond the rubble. The cowboy would once again be back in the saddle and on the range. Agriculture and the plow, which made it feasible to produce excess food on a large scale, was man’s most powerful creation. With the wheel it had transformed the planet – it would do so again.

Before the war most Americans lived in small towns of less than 2500 in rural settings. Farming and ranch work were by far the largest occupations in America as well as the rest of the world. Being spread wide upon the Earth had probably saved millions, but now great migrations to mostly devastated cities were underway. One of our primary jobs now was to set up 25 core distribution centers around the world linked to usable port facilities which could then be used to move desperately needed supplies to as many people as possible. Not all would be fed. Choices had to be made – some would live while others would die. The most productive areas would come first.


“Over, under or through – but never around.”

Teddy Roosevelt

As debris was pushed aside military tents were set up to temporarily house government offices in many areas around the world as well as giving much needed cover for the surviving populations. As an example in the United States, in a central area of what had been Washington D. C. (now New Washington Center), signs could be seen on these tents with the words “War Department”, “Department of State”, “Congress” and much more. President Roosevelt’s ‘office’ consisted of two military style tents patched together, one for a private bedroom and study and one for his official duties. Despite the universal destruction around him ‘Teddy’ for one seemed to enjoy the rough and ready appeal of his new office and duties. His natural energy seemed to become infectious as Washington was cleared of debris. The desk he personally made with a few planks of wood may now be seen in the rebuilt New Washington Center National Museum (lower-level). It has often been stated, and perhaps not too exaggerated, that the president loved war, as he felt that it strengthened the man and showed his true mettle to the rest of the world “that was becoming over civilized”. Years later a message was found that had been carved by “Teddy” on his now famous “Martian War desk.” A close look on the side of the ‘desk’ allows a glimpse into Mr. Roosevelt’s combative mind. The president had carved, “Bully, Earth 1 – Mars 0.”

Although I was never to witness this myself (although I feel that I did having heard the story several times) many would remember the American President riding around on his horse along with two military escorts riding alongside as well as the many times he dismounted at one point or another to help clear a road or put up a tent. (In fact, ten years later a small but well written book did come out describing this portion of his presidency.) In many nations the ability to ride a horse once again became a valued skill, as more ‘modern’ transportation facilities had been too devastated not to mention too dangerous to use without repairs. The horse and buggy did, for quite a while, replace rail transportation as the best and fastest method to move people and surplus goods. We seemed for a while to have taken a major step into the past. Within three months however, Mr. Roosevelt moved into a train car in order to expedite efforts around his nation. Roosevelt had earlier ordered a survey of all rail lines and port facilities to ascertain the damage. He named the train the “White House on Wheels,” with a telegraph code of “White House 1.” Naturally, there was a place to house his horse. He had renamed the American Executive Mansion, at the time mostly in rubble, “The White House”, and would within a year take up residence. After he moved back in the President was able to once again enjoy his now famous “White House walks” which inevitably ended with a brisk swim across the Potomac – nude!

One of the first official acts Roosevelt put into place when things got back to ‘normal’ after the war was to establish the Army War College. Two years later he would establish the General Staff Corps to train senior army officers. These two establishments would later allow allied officers to attend. At times some fifty percent of those attending were Committee officers.

Roosevelt was fond of saying “the First Martian War had destroyed the old world centered on Western Europe and had thrust America onto the world stage whether she wanted it or not.” Already the leader in transporting freight, oil production, steel forging, coal production and gold mining, as well as many other areas, America was now a new superpower in the wings, which would use its industrial strength and democratic society to save and then build up as much of the world as they could. The Americans would be only partially successful in that regard, but they never gave up the effort backed mostly by the Committee. Needless to say, there are still many places on Earth that are for the most part still quite uncivilized even by human standards. One of those areas was very close to the United States; just south of the border. And in the years to come, as America and the rest of the civilized world continued to prepare for battle with off world forces, these uncivilized areas continued to cause nothing but trouble as they do to this very day.

In order to bring stability to still populated areas, which had all been ravaged by war, as ordered by the Committee martial law was enacted around most of the well-populated centers on Earth. It was required, but not always welcome. In some areas leaflets were dropped on small pockets of humanity by dirigibles to bring the news to as many outlying areas as possible. The leaflets informed the people about martial law and the Executive Committee of Twelve which had recently been formed. The fact that packaged food, medical supplies and grain for eating and planting were also dropped most of the time with the news seemed to help in receiving cooperation from many areas. Information on how to organize and what to do about sanitation was also part of the messages. The Committee knew wars and recovery from wars are often won not only by actions, but by words as long as they were clear and contain at least a nugget of truth. The words now had to be precise, powerful, meaningful and to the point. Martial law under Directorate C would be put in place to ensure these words (and orders) would be heard and obeyed.


“If we are to survive order must be obtained and held at all costs throughout the planet.”

Prime Director – Committee of Twelve

It would have been much more satisfying if I could report that after the Martians fell humanity held on to its roots of law and order in the face of great adversity in all areas. Sadly, as we all well know, I cannot. This is not to say that all of mankind reverted to the primitive beasts of millennia long past, but in several places on Earth that is exactly what happened. In many areas there were no laws, and looting and rioting become widespread to the point where control came only with strong military force. There were even small military engagements with well-armed civilians, notably in Central Africa and Central America, which needed to be put down before order was once again maintained. Martial law had not, as one reporter recently wrote, “come to the world as a bolt of lightning.” Rather it was one of piecemeal-enacted events first by local military officers and later by official declaration by the Committee. Small brush-wars over minor territory were also breaking out in several areas of Africa, Asia, South and Central America and they would need to be addressed as soon as possible. In many areas murdering bands roamed the countryside. There was much to be done of a military nature. All of which further drained our critical resources. (Because of the generally unstable situation members of the Committee, myself included, always carried side arms for at least 18 months after the war.)

Historians would peer into the abyss of this period and write of the collapse of civilization at nearly every level before mankind could once again take hold of humanity and move forward.

The great nations and empires have become but names in the mouths of men. Everywhere there are ruins and unburied dead, and shrunken, yellow-faced survivors, in a mortal apathy. Here there are robbers, here vigilance committees, and here guerrilla bands ruling patches of exhausted territory, strange federations and brotherhoods form and dissolve, and religious fanaticisms begotten of despair gleam in famine-bright eyes. It is a universal dissolution. The fine order and welfare of the Earth have crumpled like an exploded bladder… the world and the scope of human life have undergone a retrogressive change as great as that between the age of the Antonines and the Europe of the ninth century…

I cannot say however, there were no places on Earth where men simply came together to build and recover what they could locally, there were, but they were the exception rather than the rule. Some communities of modest population simply came together to help each other survive and true martial law was never seen. Examples of this could be seen in Canada, England, Australia, many South Pacific Islands, and the United States as well as in the Scandinavian nations and parts of southern Africa. In general however, order in populated areas was held by force of arms. Military forces as a rule simply set up a command post, deployed patrols and posted rules for the individuals in their sectors.

Forces were soon deployed to secure any remaining government buildings, energy generating stations still in operation or repairable, transportation hubs, ports, food distribution and any other facilities deemed critical by local military authorities. Local curfews were established from dusk till dawn, civil laws were suspended, including most civil rights and the writ of habeas corpus was ignored. Civilians were thus subject to military courts of justice. It is testimony to our fighting forces generally, and to the officers in many nations which led them, that they could stop fighting a brutal enemy and turn around to begin recovery and control operations so well so soon. Even without orders from above control and order was swift, and generally without too many problems. Most people just seemed to understand it would be needed at least for a while. Order needed to be established fast.

Historically speaking martial law is generally imposed by military authorities over small regions on an emergency basis and usually for a limited time. With most civilian governments effectively destroyed by the Martian War, maintaining security and civil order clearly fell to local military officers. They had most of the weapons and thus the tools to get the job done.

When communications were finally established, albeit on a limited basis (wireless, cable and messengers), with remaining military forces around the world, those within the Committee were able to send recommendations and information which would aid in the establishment of order. Soon these forces were able to communicate with members of their temporarily established governments by telegraph cables and the few wireless stations in Old London, which gave the local military commanders complete authority over their areas until proper civilian agencies could be set up. It is sad to recall, but it has become common knowledge, there were more than a few incidents around the world where military authorities felt it was necessary to use firing squads in their efforts to maintain order. However, investigations into many of those cases of firing squad executions showed that few were used summarily. Most were executed after a short trial having been convicted by a military tribunal of rape, murder or some other high crime against person or persons. Some of course were shot on the spot for looting during the early days of the recovery.

Being found guilty of crimes against property usually, but not always, meant either hard labor, a whipping or a period of confinement with short rations (rarely) – not death. Nevertheless, there were some executions (mostly by firing squads), which should not have been carried out, but those were few and far between and many of the individuals responsible for these unfortunate deaths were dealt with by later military courts. China, Japan and Russia seem to have been the primary areas where this became a concern, but we must also understand that desperate times did call for desperate measures. This is not an excuse, only a statement of fact. Law and order for the most part eventually won the day, but unfortunately not in all areas and in some notable areas not even to this day.

In a very large number of cases when prisons and jails were entered those who had been convicted of murder and other violent crimes (in some cases non-violent crimes) in civilian courts held before the Martian invasion were immediately taken out and executed – many by the local residents before any military or other authorities were able to re-establish some type of control. It was not a good time to be a violent criminal as they were nearly universally killed. Many other prisoners were also executed, mostly by mobs – on the spot. These executions predated the orders, which would be issued by the Executive Committee of Twelve, and as such would not be investigated by any authorities, military or civilian. No jury in the world would convict anyone in those cases and no one would have testified so trials would have been a waste of time. These deaths were best forgotten. We had to move on – many more lives were at stake. We had a planet to save!

History has shown in general terms most areas under martial law were eventually able to transition to civilian authority without too many real problems. Most people understood the situation. Usually, but not in all cases, the military commander would submit a declaration of civilian ability to control a town or city by having established a well-trained police force backed up by a group of civilians who had re-established communications, transportation, housing, power supplies and consumables as well as sanitation and medical facilities. At such a time a team from the Committee would visit the area for a full inspection. If they felt that the area had progressed far enough for self rule the Committee would give their blessing to the new local government and draw down military forces. Their job in fact was to authorize as many transitions to civilian authority as they could reasonably do as fast as possible. The Committee did not want to be in the martial law business any longer than it needed to be. Transfer of power also prescribed that local military forces must be under the control of civilian governments. Unfortunately, this high ideal did not always hold true as more and more re-formed governments pressed for self rule as Committee eyes and resources looked to other pressing problems. Military dictatorships did crop up mostly in South America and Africa. The process was not perfect. We never could martial the resources to control all aspects of life on Earth even if we wanted to. It would be unreasonable to believe we could. Even the powerful Martians could not pull that off.

Usually when martial law was removed less than half of the military force was left in the general area, in camp in case of any new problems developing when civilian control was re-established. Most of the time they were not needed, but as one would expect, at times martial law needed to be re-established for short periods of time. Areas of South and Central America seemed to be in this general situation more often than other areas although certain African areas were also considered problem zones. As we all know three large areas were never able to create lawful nations under international supervision for longer than a few weeks at most and have become no-man lands known as the Lawless Zones. These lawless criminal areas have of course been quarantined and would remain so until they are judged or ‘forced’ to become civilized.

Controversial as this policy has been (I for one was in full agreement), placing these areas under effective quarantine was not a snap decision. These areas were submitted to the group by Directorate C and voted on by the full Magic Twelve. The full history of the people who lived in those areas before the war and what they had developed in the best of times was fully taken into account. The decision was made that these areas would cost too many lives and too many scarce resources from outside of these zones to make it anywhere near worthwhile to civilize and control, at least for the foreseeable future. This was the price the people of these areas paid for effectively being completely uncivilized. At this point in time it was clear these areas had not earned a place on the world stage as independent “civilized” nations and there were simply not enough men or resources to place post war occupation forces into these areas. We did however make efforts to place Committee agents into each of these areas. Like it or not we needed to know what was going on beyond gates of civilization.

From my notes, “…the world is a world, not a charitable institution, and I take it they will have to go.”

Many years ago Reverend Thomas Malthus had written in his Essay on Population that populations multiply faster than food resources. The survivors of any disaster on Earth would compete for resources that would in effect act as a selective force to kill off the weak. The survivor’s offspring would be stronger and better able to survive in the new environment. With the new reality in mind we needed to take that into consideration. Not everyone was going to survive, not by a long shot. Although he could not have known it at the time his work could easily have related to events on Mars as they continued to struggle for survival with ever dwindling resources at every level. Earth would now face the same situation.

British naturalist Charles Darwin had written On the Origin of Species, reminding all that “life is an incessant struggle for existence” and that only the strong and evolved would survive. The lawless zones would test that theory on a grand scale and as a body they would continue as a thorn in side of civilized man for some time to come.


“Those areas on Earth which remain uncivilized must be isolated from the rest of the recovering planet in order to protect civilization as a whole as we struggle to recover from the devastation of world war and unite as one planet.”

Internal Committee Report 45d, October 1909

We all know there are three areas on Earth that no matter how much effort was expended on them they simply could not be brought back to a civilized condition and thus needed to be at least temporarily abandoned. It will be recalled the last martial law reestablishment (for the seventh time) along the United States-Mexico border was put into operation in late 1919 after brutal Mexican terrorists began to once again murder local Mexican politicians and attack several times across the southern border of the United States. By that time the well-recovered United States government had had enough of these attacks and the Committee agreed that once again nothing less than brute force was going to change that situation. A few years earlier, mostly due to these incursions, President Roosevelt had asked the American Congress to “Raise some companies of horse riflemen out there in the event of trouble with Mexico.” He also sent messages requesting information on the border situation to commanders in the field. “Will you telegraph me at once if war becomes inevitable?” It would not be long before Roosevelt had, as United States Ambassador to Great Britain, John Hay would write, “…a splendid little war.”

Of the three Lawless Zones established by the Committee it would be the Mexican one known as the Mexican Lawless Zone (MLZ), which would cause the Committee the most problems, and being on the border with the United States naturally the Americans took it upon themselves to ‘correct’ the situation! It must be stated that general lawless activity within the borders of a newly re-constituted nation was not enough to cause such action to be taken. Only when such lawless behavior spilled over to other countries did the Committee find it necessary to act with its final decision to isolate an area. To be honest the level of pure vicious brutality in that area shocked the members of the Committee even considering all that we had gone through during the First Martian War. This insane level of vicious criminal behavior had to be isolated – and fast! The Executive Committee of Twelve in executive session quickly approved strong military action against the lawless Mexican area voting 12 to 0. Needless to say, when the time came the Mexican bandit gangs were dealt with very quickly. Before the military moved however, there would be one final attack from south of the border that crossed into the United States. At the time a senior Committee staff member would remark: “No amount of external resources, no new international institutions, can bring progress to nations which do not have political stability and determined leadership.” Another member remarked, “As it should be, it is the responsibility of those individuals in the Lawless Zones to solve their own problems in order to re-enter the world of nations as fully engaged members rather than a large base of operations for continuous terrorist activity.”

The views of Edward Burnett Tylor on the subject came to the attention of the Committee. Having survived the war his study of primitive cultures could also be used to determine the capabilities or the lack there in of the people within the Lawless Zones. “The principal criteria of classification are the absence or presence, high or low development, of the industrial arts, especially metal-working, manufacture of implements and vessels, agriculture, architecture, &c., the extent of scientific knowledge, the definiteness of moral principles, the degree of social and political organization, and so forth.”

For his part Joseph Arthur Comte de Gobineau (1816-1882) came right to the point when it came to those who could be civilized and those who could not. “Far from showing that all the tribes of mankind are intellectually alike, the nations capable of civilization have always proved the contrary, first by the absolutely different foundations on which they based their states, and secondly by the marked antipathy which they showed to each other.” “The savage groups of people of today (as marked by those occupying the Lawless Zones and others) have really always been savage, and we are right in concluding, by analogy, that they will continue to be so, until the day they disappear off the face of the Earth.”

The MLZ is, for the most part, still sealed off from the recovering civilized world simply due to the continuing and illegal brutal nature of its inhabitants along with the Central-African Lawless Zone (CLZ) quarantined in 1915 and the Somaliland Lawless Zone (SLZ) quarantined in 1910. Due to extensive pirate activity out of the SLZ four navel engagements have been fought off of Somaliland in 1914, 1921, 1926 and 1932, each resulting in the sinking of several dozen Somaliland pirate ships by British, South African and United States Navies. Anyone captured while engaging in piracy is naturally executed by firing squad after it has been determined by tribunal that an individual has engaged in such activities. There is of course the single well guarded diplomatic facility on the border of each Zone where entrance can be made and messages exchanged, but very few are allowed to actually pass through. These are contact points only, not points of entry or escape. These three points are naturally heavily guarded by military forces of local nations as well as the Committee.

In the event of a resumption of the Martian attacks there were no plans to aid these three areas as they continue to devour themselves internally. Any Martian activities occurring in these areas during a war will not be addressed until all ‘civilized’ areas on Earth have been defended. Only then will world military forces engage in general battle in those areas, which will then become free-fire-zones.

Plans were later developed by the Committee to sweep these areas with military forces and take full control when the time comes, with or without a second war with Mars. After control is re-established these areas are to be divided up into smaller countries. The former names of these areas (nations) will not be used in order to completely separate individuals from their former alliances. This separation is expected to take two or three generations to become fully integrated. New nations would then have developed new directions and new histories. The former nation of Mexico, and other Lawless Zone ‘nations,’ would simply no longer exist. Carved up from the former nation of Mexico as an example, Committee plans call for the creation of nine new nations including Baja, Chihuahua, Durango, Monterrey, Victoria, Guadalajara, Veracruz, Tiaxcala and Yucatan. (These are the general areas but these names would not be used as they would be reminders of an earlier time.) Military forces would be directed to invade, occupy and then set up civilian governments as well as local security forces in each of these areas one-by-one until the entire area has been pacified and transformed into modern ‘civilized’ nations ready to enter the world stage. Needless to say, the Committee has designated English as the required language to be taught to the new citizens of each and every one of these new ‘nations’. To give the residents a whole new direction as they developed their new histories the Spanish language would not be outlawed, native dialects would be fully encouraged, but English would become the primary language.

One of the Assistant Directors would note that, “There is no alternative if we are to have a satisfactory permanent pacification of the world – but local self-development in these regions under honestly conceived international control of police and transit and trade; there is no other way of peace.”

The last area removed from the original 1901 implementation of martial law was Haiti. On 17 December  1905, the Committee, represented by Admiral George Dewey, helped take down the military banner and hand over documents, which stated the newly constituted civilian government of Haiti had been certified and was then ready for self-rule (barely as it turned out). 17 December is now remembered as “World Nations Day” as it marked a great milestone on our long recovery. It would now be up to the individual nations to enforce law and order. Most did that, at least on a superficial level. Mexico, Somaliland and Central Africa of course did not.


Magic Order MO-04

Immediate: All gold and silver reserves known to exist are to be acquired with all due haste in order to protect and secure these reserves in the names of the nations which held them before the start of world hostilities. Ten percent will be held for Committee operations. They are to be deposited in the ‘Prime Location’ and placed under constant guard. Additional: A world trading currency will soon be forthcoming issued by Magic based on metal resources and production capabilities.



The Earth’s Population Goes Underground

“It is time to once again seek the shelter of the cave and dig deep into the Earth for our very survival.”

Director B – Executive Committee of Twelve

Mars’ ever diminishing ability to sustain higher forms of life on its surface had driven the Martians mostly underground thousands of years ago. (We would learn that many lower forms of life, both plant and animal did indeed still live on the surface of Mars albeit mostly in lower lying areas scattered about the planet.) Now we had been driven underground by the Martians and thus we needed to build for our very survival on Earth as our enemies had done on Mars. It was an early decision by Directorates B & C, supported by the full Magic Twelve group, that much of the preparation and defense in anticipation of another war with Mars (or for that matter any other potential off-world adversary) would need to be constructed as much as possible completely out of view and out of the line of fire of the powerful Martians. Whole factories for manufacturing and testing of equipment needed to be built underground. Large living and working areas for much of Earth’s population also needed to be built out of harm’s way.

Too large a number of Earth’s population had been exposed on the surface during the first war; in fact, a majority had. That situation needed to be corrected. With this in mind a search was conducted by specialists as soon as feasible to find the largest caves on Earth into which long tunnels could be constructed to not only hide the facilities, but to hide any entrances to them. Whenever possible tunnels were to be built off of already existing subway and rail tunnels, which led to these facilities, and where tunnels were not already in place whole new complexes were to be built to hide them. We did not fail to note that it was in the cave that pre-historic man found refuge from the dangers of his primitive world – we had now come full circle. Once again mankind would come to the warmth and safety of the cave. We were going home to rest and recover in the arms of mother Earth, fired by the imagination of the many ancient rock formations to be found within the caves and caverns of our home world.

Example of a natural cave entrance which would be developed into a much larger underground facility
Example of a natural cave entrance which would be developed into a much larger underground facility

We did not forget the possibility of building facilities under the ocean near natural undersea caves and canyons. However, this possibility was soon discarded as technical difficulties made it nearly impossible to construct these facilities, at least for the time being. However, future plans were developed to create these facilities when technology did become available so that these could become an underwater reality. Natural caves with sea level access would have to fill this need for the time being. Large bomb shelters would also become part of the rebuilding effort in every major city on Earth.


These plans were soon expanded to create whole underground cities. It had not taken long for the original idea of underground facilities to turn into a full building program of underground cities. Three of them (under the devastated cities of Old London, New York and Sydney) would eventually become huge complexes as large as any above ground city had ever been. (Paris, Chicago, Seoul and several others came close.) These new building efforts were soon being powered by Tesla electric generators built by George Westinghouse’s new company. The mining operations would be fully powered by new electric equipment. For the most part the gas lamp was soon to be a thing of the past. Edison’s team would also be hard at work on the project reporting, “I can light the entire lower part of New York City using a 500-horsepower engine.”

Within months of the war’s end this vital work would begin and it would continue for much of the next 36 years. What made these efforts the most complicated works projects ever conceived came from the fact that these vast facilities (at least the ones which became underground cities) needed to be completely self-sufficient in energy production, food production (a problem which would take years to solve), water and air supplied internally or at least pumped in by secure and reliable means, (which meant they had to be capable of filtering out the deadly Martian gases) as well as practical in the area of waste removal. They were to be designed and built to be completely closed off in the event of war for as long as six months and be defensible. Some relatively small super secret areas of these new facilities would reach as deep as 3000 feet underground. These were some of the great challenges of the underground facilities.

Even before work had been started on the surface to rebuild our destroyed world, efforts had begun to construct what would amount to the three largest underground projects ever conceived. As stated above New York City, London and Sydney were chosen as the most logical locations for these massive primary underground projects. New York City was selected to take advantage of the infrastructure still in place, which included considerable underground tunnels still in safe, secure places and usable, despite the relentless Martian attacks. It was a good location, as it would allow for easy land, sea and eventually air movement of equipment and people in and out of the facility. It could also be readily re-enforced. The city which had been close to supporting the Confederate cause during the American Civil War would now become one of not only the leading cities of America but the world we were trying to rebuild.

Old London was chosen for many of the same reasons and for the fact that it was an ocean away from New York City in case one or the other was lost during the expected next war. London, that would be underground London, would become world headquarters for the Committee for the next 15 years. One of the lessons of the Martian War was that despite the punishment most of the primitive and relatively small underground facilities already in place had taken for the most part they were undamaged by wars’ end. If the Martians knew they were there they did very little to attack them. Others felt such attacks would have been difficult if not impossible.

Old London had opened its first underground railway system on 10 January 1863. During that first year the single four mile long track would carry nearly 9.5 million passengers. The underground railway had greatly expanded since then but now a whole new system would be developed with a much expanded use, one never imagined by anyone. We would begin building our new Lower-London utilizing the underground railway as well as the many rooms, tunnels and catacombs extending for miles, some dating to Roman Londinium including a small Roman village which had sunk over the millennia into the soils of London. These underground openings and passages would give this program a very nice jump start.

Finally, the Sydney location was selected as the primary southern backup, not simply because it was so far away from the other locations which was indeed a plus, but because it had suffered much less damage during the First Martian War than most of the cities in the northern hemisphere. It also had the advantage of good rail and sea connections, but the tunnels would need to be built primarily from scratch. A city extended to the north and west would also need to be constructed in order to give cover to the underground facility, which needed new roads, tunnels and parks to cover the entrances and roadways leading into the semi-secret (at least for a short time) facility. All three prime city locations would be able to transform a good many large sewer lines underground primarily due to the greatly lowered population demands. Some sewers would be sealed off, cleaned (a particularly nasty job completed mostly by hardened criminals from prisons working in chain gangs) and made ready for general occupation. It was but one more reason why it was certainly not a good time to be a criminal.

Sydney did have one great advantage however; near the city geologists had discovered a series of eight underground caves as large as city blocks. These caves could be structurally strengthened and connected by tunnels, which made work on the facility faster and relatively easier than New York City or London. No similar caves were ever found in or near New York or London which were useful, so those areas needed to be excavated and constructed underground completely from scratch (other than the existing tunnels in place in 1901). Only later would large caves be found near but not under Old London. Near enough for bomb shelters and stand-alone facilities, they would not be close enough for inclusion into the underground cities.

These underground tunnels would be constructed day and night for the next three decades with three overlapping ten hour shifts. This unworldly effort would always be dangerous and many lives were expected to be lost in the effort due to gas explosions, collapsing tunnels and water coming in drowning workers and many other dangers, but it had to be done.

Underground and underwater cables would supply badly needed backup communication systems during a war. The Committee would include in each of these underground locations working areas and offices for the Committee as well as housing for the Magic Twelve. These three areas were also expected to serve as the world’s Command and Control bunkers during interplanetary war. Military control areas were soon part of the program.

Another early decision by the Committee was to leave large areas of the devastated cities above the underground complexes exactly as they were after the First Martian War. This was more than a simple problem of insufficient work forces available to do the clean up and rubble removal. It was thought that a devastated area above the underground cities would cause the Martians to bypass these areas in favor of attacking newly built up areas on the surface since they would necessarily have limited fighting forces and weapons to expend on another war with Earth. With this in mind the first preliminary plans drawn up showed most of the new above ground buildings were not over the newly designed underground, as 85% of the below ground facilities would be covered by the rubble of the old cities.

Underground city water-air-electrical control center
Underground city water-air-electrical control center

It was also decided that if and when enough manpower could be brought to bear on the problem that perhaps as much as 50% of the below ground work could be covered by new above ground construction with the thought that as we developed new ways to defend ourselves the camouflage cover would be less and less necessary. Two decades later, as the world showed great recovery, this plan was changed and much of the remaining rubble was removed and replaced mostly with park areas and open fields. Because of this, much of the original underground construction would find itself on the outskirts of the new above ground cities, not yet reconstructed.

It should also be mentioned that placing military facilities in separate underground locations would also become part of the program, but that would come later. For now keeping much of the world’s population out of harm’s way during any “outer space invasion” was one of many prime objectives.


Copyright © R. Michael Gordon, 2020

[Next week: Part 9: Earth recovery efforts in the forefront.]

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