Humans are terrifying: Resistance to Damage and Small Arms
What if aliens’ weapons are nowhere near lethal to us, just painful? Like, either they use energy weapons that at worst cause slight burns or perhaps growths under prolonged exposure, or their kinetic-kill weapons are comparable to BB/air guns, paintballs, or airsoft pellets? And despite their likely larger frame, they lack the muscle density we have, so either they can’t swing/stab their melee weapons hard enough to damage us, or their weapons are made out of such inferior material that they just shatter or fold, or bounce off our skin altogether? What if they have to use ship-grade or anti-vehicular weapons against us?
What if we’re the Space Badgers?
Commander’s Log, 2e.455.6789
They just. Keep. Coming.
My unit has been entrenched in the Ghûrzáan Mountains on [Ophii Beta 1-6b-Theta], the third moon in orbit around the massive gas giant, for [three days]. We started with 10,000 of the finest the Grand Army had to offer. In the [two weeks] since the humans arrived, that number has been pruned and has dwindled to a meager 2,300. They landed with 6,000, and have only lost 153. They essentially have the moon already, but we are holding out the best we can. Gods above, we hope rescue arrives soon.
They are so much smaller than us! How? How is it possible that they have this level of durability? One ‘Praivet’ as they called the warrior, but a lowly grunt(!!!), stood against MY ENTIRE THIRD ARMORED DIVISION, taking about 70 souls and 13 of my finest heavy assault vehicles with it to the After. A gods-blessed TANK ROUND traveling at [320 meters/second] only killed the human because it struck it in the head and severed its central nervous ganglion, through sheer force alone. Upon examination, and despite hairline fractures and heavy bruising, the human’s bones and flesh were INTACT. Our normal small-arms fire bounce off of their skin and our energy weapons hardly singe their clothes. Our melee weapons can’t even penetrate their suits, much less their flesh.
Their weapons and armor are absolute madness. Iron-base armors, with heavy metal weaves and supplication, and carbon-nanotube weave in a graphene substrate. Their bullet-proof garments are made out of simple CLOTH. They use titanium… for LIGHT plating. Their rifles weigh three times the weight of our light anti-tank weaponry, and fire with about 130 times the force. Their bullets, accelerated to about a thousandth of the speed of light, almost compare with the delivered force of our anti-tank missiles.
They are made out of carbon-, nitrogen-, and hydrogen-based sugars and proteins. Their blood has iron in it. They breathe OXYGEN. Their bones are strengthened with calcium. THEY ARE PREDATORY AND CONTAIN LETHAL MICRO-ORGANSIMS INSIDE THEIR ORGANS AND ON THEIR SKIN.
They can move almost effortlessly in our preferred environment. They can punch with enough force to rupture your insides. They can tear your limb off and use it as a club. They routinely stand off one to tens with our own forces.
We need rescue. Before there is no one left to rescue.
Dear gods, they found us. If anyone from the Illustrious Empire of the Vhârashjeenzi discover these records, this is my one and final warning: Do not engage humanity, as I did. They cannot be stopped. They will prove to be our ruin.
American troops help push a medical jeep out of the snow and slush while evacuating casualties from the 53rd Armored Infantry Battalion, 4th Armored Division, near Esch, Luxembourg on January 26, 1945.
An M8 ‘Greyhound’ light armored car is in the background.
“The Remagen Bridgehead” - 7 March 1945 - From the US Army in Action Series. Combat Command B, 9th Armored Division, led by the 27th Armored Infantry Battalion, battles to secure the Ludendorf Bridge over the Rhine, in Remgagen Germany with “superb skill, daring and esprit de corps”.
why is it considered bad for a low-ranked guy to hang out with someone high-ranked?
You can see a longer answer I gave about fraternization a while back, but I can go into some more detail here as well!
The biggest issue the army has with different ranks hanging out is that it may indirectly or directly affect how soldiers are treated. Ideally, everyone should be treated equally under the Uniform Code of Military Justice. All soldiers have a superior to whom they answer. Punitive and rewarding actions should be based on the merit of the soldier, not the relationship between a soldier and their superior.
But if you’ve got a PFC getting buddy-buddy with their sergeant, maybe they get an early waiver for specialist, maybe they get a cushy admin job so they can hang out with the sergeant instead of working with all the other privates, and maybe that is based on their own merits or maybe the sergeant is just keen on the private. There’s no way to know for sure unless the army forbids the sergeant and the PFC from being buddy-buddy in the first place.
This is often why you see a lot of soldiers getting a transfer shortly after a major promotion. A promotion from PFC to specialist isn’t that big a deal, but when you get from specialist to sergeant, suddenly you’re in charge of a bunch of lower-enlisted who used to be your buddies, and now you might start showing them favoritism or they might not properly respect you because they still see you as a peer. Thus, the army moves you to another platoon, company, or even battalion. Now all your new soldiers know about you is that you’re a sergeant, and they should treat you like one.
Of course, there’s always the alternate route of a superior being vindictive toward their subordinates. It’s pretty shitty for a rival peer to be promoted over you and for the bad blood between you to cause them to abuse their power.
While it is inappropriate for someone with a high rank to hang out with someone who’s a low rank no matter what the circumstances, or for an officer to hang out with NCOs, it’s not always strictly enforced between soldiers who are in completely different chain of commands to the point where they couldn’t possibly have any influence on each other.
Let’s take Fort Bliss as an example. Fort Bliss is a massive army post, the second largest we have, and as such it’s home to a number of unrelated units.
Say you’ve got a captain from 2-43 ADA and a sergeant from 5-52 ADA. At first glance, they look dissimilar enough. They’re different units under different command and they may never even see each other. But they both fall under 11th Brigade, making them a little too close to have an interpersonal relationship. If the captain were promoted to major and then worked as a supply officer in 11th brigade, well, now all of a sudden the sergeant has a buddy at 11th who’s got some strings to pull.
Contrast this if to a captain from 2-43 ADA and a sergeant from 2-13 CAV. The first one’s in Air Defense and the second one’s in 1st Armor Division. They’re two completely different parts of the army. They have almost nothing in common except that they’re both stationed at Fort Bliss. There’s almost no way the relationship could become leverage for the sergeant or become such that the captain can abuse their powder.
The reason it’s still inappropriate for them to fraternize even despite their vast differences is mostly just for the sake of appearances. As a soldier, we are representative of the army at all times. That’s why we aren’t supposed to grow our beards out on leave or wear off-the-wall clothing in public. People who know we’re soldiers see us doing that and think, “Huh, is that how the army acts nowadays?” So when people see a captain being friendly with a sergeant, they might get the wrong idea about how the chain of command is run.
Naturally, a lot of people find this a silly reason to prevent people from being friends, so this is where you get into “technically not allowed but it depends on who cares” kind of scenario.
U.S. Army soldiers of the 3rd Brigade, 1st Armored Division, part of the U.S. 5th Army (United States Army North) capture and disarm German Wehrmacht soldiers during the Battle of Cisterna. January 31, 1944.
The crew M4A2 “Sherman” with the proper name “La Moscowa” (“Moscow”) of the 2nd French armored division of General Philippe Leclerc. From left to right: Jean Fabre, Louis Decherchi — gunner, Sergeant Robert Boccardo — tank commander, Charles Kartner, unknown. Girl — “godmother” (marraine) of the crew (name not known). Each crew of the tank divisions had a godmother, who corresponded with the crew, sent them parcels and gifts. The photo was taken between 31 July and 1 November 1944.
Portrait of a teenage German soldier of the 4th SS Panzergrenadier Regiment Der Führer after being taken as a POW by the U.S. 3rd Armored Division during the Battle of the Bulge. Near St. Vith, Liège, Wallonia, Belgium. 23 December 1944.