Void Bombs – Inhumane?
The warfare technology known as Void Bombs cause more than an inconvenience to a spacefaring vessel’s energy reserves. We are probably all familiar with The Scope news reports of large battles over space dominance, but one of the overshadowed casualties of this glamorized warfare are handicapped and equal opportunity crewmembers.
Void Bombs are a version of electronic warfare that creates a deficit of electrons in a spherical volume of space from the bomb’s detonation point. We won’t get into specifics here because it’s complicated. It seems logical enough on the surface to starve a ship’s energy reserves, but the problem lies in collateral damage. The electrons are starved from all available sources, and the butcher’s bill is measured in Gigajoules. It is indiscriminate.
To make matters worse, Void Bombs are commonly launched in waves. Some coordinated volleys pack enough punch to empty a dreadnought’s power core. Long before this threshold is reached, the first to succumb to the electron deficit are certain members of a ship’s crew.
In YC 34 an obscure statute was enacted to improve the employment prospects of the disabled and rehabilitated. The Mandate for Equal Opportunity for the Workforce (MEOW) required every licensed capsuleer hire 2% of their crews from a pool of disabled or vocationally disadvantaged persons. This demographic is very well-known for its middle-aged and older composition. A considerable segment of this group rely on various versions of the life-saving electronics colloqially known as “pacemakers.”
It’s easy to imagine how well a pacemaker might fare against a weapon designed to drain the batteries of capital ships. Most pacemaker designs require a battery sized for a timepiece. Should the order of space battle include the disabled and elderly as the first casualties of an attack?
A touching case in this most unfortunate warfare sees a young Caldari citizen seeking work as a defender missile technician in memory of his father. Defender missiles were somewhat recently updated to counteract bombs like the ones that stopped his father’s heart in the battle of Asakai.
“Heart failure runs in my family. It has for generations. I plan to man my defender missiles well into my mid-hundreds and work in space in honor of my father. Not a single reload will be missed, and not a single missile will miss. Not on my watch.”
(editor’s note: the interviewed missile technician’s ship fell victim to a combination of a citadel’s void bombs and its defending fleet.)
The Commissar Kate fanclub and its readers and editorial staff demand to know: what plans have been made to address this inhumane weaponry? Was the collateral damage measured but deemed insignificant? Was the weapon intended to disable the most likely experienced portion of a crew?
Several bomber pilots have been asked for their opinion of this casualty of war, and the answers contain a disturbing theme. They didn’t know, or it was never a concern. Most troubling though are the pilots who admitted the atrocities committed with Void Bombs but simply stated they were just following orders.