[Mail call] 2017/02/05

“So, something I don’t get. If the Abyssals are so powerful, then why NOT tell everyone about the threat? Surely humanity will band together if that’s the case? After all, the Allies and the Soviet Union were not friends, but they came together to fight Hitler all the same.”

First of all, the Soviets were a part of the Allies. 🙂

Secondly, this is a proposition that’s been brought up by many, many, many STEC officers, advisors, and operatives, and each and every time it’s been shot down for a wide number of reasons.

The first is that, well, what good does it do, exactly? The Abyssals are functionally immune to conventional weaponry and neither the US nor the USSR is in the business of throwing tactical nuclear weapons (or bigger things) at the Abyssals.

Or, to put it another way. Imagine you’re an average trooper in the services of any military. Your commanding officer tells you that the bottom line is that you can’t kill it, it can kill you (very easily), and that there’s nothing we’ve figured out so far outside of a very few exceptional circumstances.

What’s that going to do to morale?

More importantly, how does that help STEC or any other organization in the fighting against the Abyssals?

Secondly, the world’s governments are already funneling in what resources they can to support the shipgirl services to the utmost of their ability. The limitation here isn’t manpower or computational power or for the lack of people working on projects. They’re actually a bit more mundane than that.

Commander, Sal here. I’ve got some good news and bad news.

The good news is that they really did figure out an alternative formulation that could, theoretically, have practical applications. I say theoretical, because the stuff is quite good. We’ve tested the material and it’s estimated to be on par with Comall-Mk. IV. (4000 Mpa to our 4200 Mpa) and far more resistant to corrosion.

The bad news? This thing uses Rhodium rather than Rhenium. The cost is on par with that of Mk. II’s (waste ratio of approximately 97% to our ~93%) and the power cost is immense. Good luck convincing anyone to divert enough power towards this thing for mass production even if materials can be secured – by my calculations, we’d need enough power plants to cover all of Tianjin or Nagano to make this happen.

Rather, STEC’s technological development is hampered by issues of an ideological nature (it’s awfully hard to come up with innovative ways to try to kill something if that something doesn’t seem to obey the laws of physics), a logistical nature (developing weapons that are dedicated anti-Abyssal require resources that are difficult to collect or are far too expensive for us), or a practical nature (shipgirls are easy to work with but fairies aren’t).

Thus, again, revealing this to the public won’t help in any way. In fact, it might do the opposite. This brings me to point three. The Abyssals are crafty.

See, the important thing to remember is that while the Abyssals have made contact, they haven’t invaded just yet. Like what’s been noted in vol. 1, they seem content to simply throw scouts into the world’s oceans. Whether or not the Abyssals are actually capable of invading (there’s more than one officer that thinks that the Abyssals can’t bring their troops in great force yet) or wants to invade are irrelevant because STEC cares more about the costs of introducing this knowledge to the public.

War is hell. It takes a toll on the psyche of people involved. The pessimist would say that since humanity does not fully understand the capabilities of the Abyssal fleet, any and all preparations would fundamentally be pointless. They could, after all, maybe just nuke the planet from orbit and there wouldn’t be any way to resist. But even the best of the optimists would recognize that this places a great strain on the peoples of the world. Take rationing, for starters.

Let’s say that America begins to ration its resources and create policies of austerity. Well, when is this going to end? The answer is that it won’t end – because the Abyssals haven’t even attacked yet. You don’t think that the opposition party’ll instantly turn this into a matter of political partisanship?

“We’re spending money on a currently nonexistent threat when we could be doing X!”

“Party Y does not have your interests at heart. To fight off the Abyssals, we should do Z!”

Think about how much a nightmare trying to govern would be. Then think about the chaos it would bring to the population at large. Think about what this will do to the spirit of the people as a whole.

Even in governmental systems where things are more authoritarian (efficient, as the Soviets or the Chinese would prefer to call it), these policies would be difficult to enact on a larger scale. Are you going to set aside a strategic food reserve for an event that may or not come, when you need to solve practical issues this very moment?

How do you know if the policies you’re setting up is going to work against these things?

See, the world taciturnly agrees to keep the Abyssals a secret from all but those needing to shoulder the burden. Believe me, this isn’t because of author FIAT or plot armor or storytelling. Rather, in the context of Pacific at large, each of the world’s governments and their leaders came to realize this very same conclusion independently. For now, it is better to keep that knowledge bottled up. Let those that are destined (and capable) of doing so take up the mantle of defending humanity.

War will come. The recent “signs” in vol. 1 shows that it’s really more of a question of how rather than when. The rest of the world will be dragged in very soon. What reason does STEC or any other organization have in disturbing the already fragile peace?