During the night a contingent of UAS soldiers--real ones, I assume--moved in on one of our supply camps and destroyed it utterly. There were forty Union citizens there, noncombatants whose job it was to dole out food and water to our troops in that area.
Every one of those volunteers are dead. The supplies were taken, the equipment that couldn't be carried off was burned or otherwise disabled. Most of the workers at the camp weren't killed with head trauma, meaning that our returning soldiers had to put down the ones that reanimated and prevent the ones that hadn't from doing so. All in all it was a bad night for us.
It's easy for me to forget (and maybe for all of us who aren't out there) that just because I'm getting regular reports to share with all of you, this is not a simple situation. The lines aren't easy or straight or even solid. There are places where the enemy can slip through with enough effort. We're defending hundreds of miles of front. The only reason we're able to do so with any effectiveness at all is because the vast majority of the UAS forces aren't trained for this. They rely on their equipment and vehicles, meaning they have to stick to roads and easy paths.
Yes, we prepared the way with breathtaking attention to detail. We've slowed them down and frustrated the vast majority of their troops, but last night's events are proof of a lesson every survivor in the Union has learned the hard way: don't get overconfident. Take nothing for granted. Never for a moment assume that you'll win or survive because you think you're on the right side.
Because you can be absolutely certain that the enemy feels they're on the side of the angels, too. There are few people in human history that did evil things and twirled their giant black mustaches (they're traditionalists) while doing so. Last night forty people lost their lives for a few tons of food and tankers of water, all because the people responsible thought it was the right thing to do.
If there's a more succinct example of humanity's flaws, I really can't think of it.
This is a war. People are going to die in it, and that's as sad as it is necessary to the process. We have so far been very, very lucky that our precautions have been enough to stave off the majority of the conflict, but it can't last forever. Every time we slow down the UAS enough to throw off their plans of attack, we frustrate them. We piss them off, make them less prone to rational behavior and reasonable reactions. It's a huge risk to take, but the other options are all much worse.
The idea that forty dead people and a supply depot represent just the opening notes of the fight in front of us is a sobering thought. To be honest, it's one I'm having a hard time getting past. My conscience tells me that's a good thing, while my survival instincts disagree.