There are some of you out there that have been pushing for trade in weapons lately. I've had a few messages about wanting to trade us field artillery--that is, portable artillery weapons that we could use against our enemies, as well as some less long-range items in case of a zombie swarm. There was even a comment on the blog last week about it, and with the influx of messages we've received, I feel the need to address this where all of you can read it.
In short, the title of this post says it all: this is fool's gold. Way more valuable in appearance than in reality, at least for us.
While I would love to have some rocket-propelled grenades or similar in case a huge swarm of zombies comes at New Haven, we haven't had a lot of luck finding any at the various military outposts we've come across. I have to assume that the military had similar thoughts and loaded up everything they could find. I know a lot of you out there have large chunks of surviving soldiers embedded in your communities, and that many of them brought such weapons to you. All of us here appreciate your willingness to trade for them, but we have to decline.
There are several reasons. While it would be an advantage to have some smaller, less destructive weapons to use against a zombie swarm, we couldn't rely on them long-term. After all, they take ammunition, and it isn't ammo that we can make ourselves like bullets (and even that is really damn hard to do). The main advantage over our current system of air-powered defenses is mobility. We can't take our most powerful weapons out into the field for the most part, which makes us weaker against potential hordes of undead.
As for longer-range stuff like portable mortars (this is getting into an area I don't know a lot about, so I'm taking Will and Dodger's word for it) we don't have any use for them. Yeah, we could probably use them against the fallback point, but I'm certain that the Exiles, who I'll remind are currently under tentative truce with us, have such weapons and know how to use them. The fact that they haven't is a perfect example of why they are valueless to us.
I don't have to tell anyone out there how important all our resources are, including the homes we've made for ourselves. I can't think of many circumstances in which we'd be willing to destroy the fallback point just to eliminate an enemy that isn't attacking us. I'm equally sure the Exiles don't pummel the walls of New Haven to dust because they do plan at some point to attack and try to take what we have. Maybe that will be a true takeover much as the Richmond soldiers did last year, or maybe just taking our supplies and some of our people before running. I don't know.
I do know that no even partially sane person is willing to destroy perfectly good supplies and shelter for the sake of vengeance. Do we hate each other? Sure. But we're not stupid and for damn sure not wasteful.
I don't doubt that there are some of you out there in situations with different factors. I'm not disparaging anyone that uses those kinds of weapons, but we don't need them. It's too much risk. Explosives are a danger, and easily used artillery means one person with access to them having a bad day could lead us into another war. One idiot messing around with them could blow half of New Haven to dust.
So, no. Despite the positive impact (no pun intended) those kinds of arms would have in our fight against the undead, they just aren't worth that to us. I wish more than anything that we could avoid all conflict and focus one hundred percent of our energy on building a better future. We can't, of course, and we won't whine or complain (too much) about it. But we certainly won't complicate our efforts by bringing such massively dangerous weapons here.
And remember, we are a community beset by enemies on a regular basis. If we were to be conquered again as the Richmond soldiers managed, would you want a stockpile of mortars that could destroy your entire home in minutes in the hands of such people? I wouldn't.
We thank you for your offers, but we politely decline. Now I'm off to study our captive zombies. Something interesting is happening, and I want to spend time watching it.