Sunday, July 21, 2013

Wild West

It's not all sunshine and rainbows. While the UAS here are doing their best to integrate--most of them--the reaction out west is a lot less positive. The situation has a lot of pieces and parts, so I'll try to touch on all of them.

First: the UAS sent to push against and into the western territories aren't as disciplined as the lot we've got here. Rather than try to integrate their army as a cohesive whole, which would have been impossible considering the number of pure civilians in it, the former UAS leadership chose to make the groupings as socially viable as they could. By that I mean they sent out whole communities of people who knew each other as units. Hundreds of people willing to kill and die for each other makes for a determined and focused force. The problem with that arrangement is those groups tend to have the same prejudices and ideas. A portion of them get angry about something and most of the group follows suit. It makes sense from a sociological point of view. Hell, we've seen it here in Haven enough times to know how easy groupthink is to fall into.

So take that mentality, the smaller armed forces going up against the western communities, and add to it the broken reports about the UAS leadership being overthrown. Imagine how those people reacted after months of dealing with some of the more...enthusiastic resistance they've seen in their part of the world. Not the measured responses we've given, but brutal displays and ruthless killing on the part of the western defenders. I'm not judging that since their homes were being invaded, only mentioning it as a point of reference for the mindset of the UAS in the area.

Add to that the much larger numbers in the west, the nightmarish efficiency with which they defend, and the total lack of any effort on the part of the western leaders to approach peace, and you've got a recipe for slaughter. Neither side wants to approach the other with anything but a closed fist. It's bad enough that when the reports came in to Haven and the local UAS, a good number of the latter's soldiers deserted. Took arms and vehicles and set out, certain their discontent could be better vented a thousand miles away.

How they plan to get there with the fuel they've got, I don't know. There are people on both sides of the issue still refining crude oil reserves into gasoline and diesel fuel, but it's a slow process that produces relatively small quantities. And it's doubtful any of them will trade with soldiers who have nothing of value they can part with. Taking fuel by force isn't an option, really, since every place that makes fuel is heavily defended. That's all ignoring the lack of food, the dangers of hitting zombie swarms, and the thousand other dangers the deserters ignored.

A lot of bad things can happen out on the road, and every inch of that journey is bound to be hostile. I can respect the desire to join a fight you believe in, but giving up peace to do it? I don't know, it makes any pity I might have had for them evaporate. There aren't enough people left on the planet that we can spare so many to needless stupidity. Best of luck to them, I guess.

I for one am just glad that fight is too far away to hurt us, at least directly. Maybe that will change, but by the time that might happen I'll be long gone from the game, living somewhere separate from the madness of people in large groups.

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