Thursday, February 14, 2013

Incursion Report: Highway 86, Arizona


TO: (Redacted)

FROM: (Redacted)

SUBJECT: Arizona Incursion


The day we have all feared has finally arrived. The extraterrestrial conflict that has been brewing in the outer solar system since the late 1990s has finally spread to Earth.

Although our reconnaissance has been spotty at best, our space telescope detected energy spikes indicative of a large space battle near Jupiter. (Redacted) will have more information as to the specifics of the battle, but we do know three small Snake vessels pursued a larger Gray craft toward Earth. Based on the report of a surviving eyewitness, the Gray craft was damaged and its crew was making repairs. That they would need to land here seems odd given how both species have space technology centuries in advance of our own, but perhaps the Grays' extra-vehicular repair capability was damaged or destroyed.

The first reports of a shooting star were made at around noon, while radar from the Tuscon airport briefly detected the Gray ship as it passed over the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument. The three Snake ships came hard after it and just barely avoided a massive follow-up radar sweep by the alerted airport and some local National Guard aircraft. Our supplying them a fabricated report from Kitt Peak National Observatory about an expected meteor shower got them to stand down their AWACS aircraft and impose delays on local civilian aircraft for much of the day, avoiding an immediate breach of secrecy and likely preventing the substantial human casualties unprepared National Guard units would have incurred encountering even a small alien force.

By the time our personnel arrived, the battle was largely over. Two Snake craft had been forced down in different places, while the third was in the process of finishing off the already-wounded Gray ship a fair distance from the original landing site. Fortunately two companies of our specialist troops were close enough to move overland and surprise and destroy the remaining Snake craft and detain the survivors after an hour-long firefight, albeit at the cost of twenty dead and forty wounded.

If any head must roll for the deaths of our brave men and women, let it be mine. Any spacecraft would probably have radar or something approximating, but unless it was a dedicated ground attack platform, I doubt it would have anything resembling JSTARS. It was my decision to limit aircraft involvement to helicopters lifting off from trucks once the aliens were engaged rather than hitting the aliens from beyond visual range with artillery and aircraft to soften them up first. Alerted, the craft would have been able to inflict significantly more damage and if not triumph (a very real possibility), flee and alert the Snake fleet.

Captured in the incident were three small Snake craft suffering varying degrees of damage and a larger Gray craft that was all but destroyed. Five live Snakes and seven live Grays have been captured, while we have recovered twenty Snake and twenty-three Gray bodies.


It appears we've retained secrecy, but we were lucky. The one surviving civilian eyewitness, apparently an illegal immigrant from Mexico, died of wounds inflicted by the Grays before the battle despite our best efforts. He did not know if others survived, but there's been no noise even from the usual suspects. If anyone else saw what happened, they're being awfully quiet. That will suit our purposes for now, but if there were any other witnesses, rumors will spread and this will attract unwanted attention. (Redacted) is already cooking up a sufficiently gruesome "training accident" to account for the military dead and wounded, which will hopefully at least delay any deeper investigation into the incident.

Even if their arrival was a fluke, the fact a battle has taken place between the two species on our own ground has changed the situation drastically. Both will no doubt suspect we have captured some of their technology and may attempt to retrieve it, which we will not be able to successfully conceal. Although either side will try to prevent the other from attacking, we cannot count on their being successful. We may face a larger alien incursion in the very near future, especially if secrecy efforts fail and the aliens learn from Earth-based transmissions what happened.

As long as the war was stalemated and they thought us ignorant, we had a chance to build our capabilities in secret, unmolested by any preemptive strike or attempt at alliance. We cannot count on this any longer.


The nuclear mines and kinetic projectiles launched into orbit along with the private-sector satellites over the last five years have given us a bare-bones orbital-defense capability, but a small incursion was able to avoid them and a larger incursion would simply overwhelm them. I recommend increasing the number of mines as quickly as possible, increasing the production of aircraft-deliverable anti-satellite weapons, and constructing thunderwells near strategic sites. Perhaps the president can be nudged to resume strategic-arms reduction talks with the Russians, which will free up strategic weapons for this purpose. Now that we have substantial alien technology, I strongly recommend shifting black-budget monies toward reverse engineering so we can have something more capable than Cold War projects to defend ourselves.

If the alien forces in our solar system alone turn their full might against us, there is no way we can withstand them. However, as long as each species keeps the bulk of the other's military power occupied, we might be able to defeat a smaller incursion and use that (and the alien prisoners in our possession) as bargaining chips to preserve some semblance of independence or the more likely outcome, inclusion in one species' sphere of influence under somewhat better terms. When elephants fight the mouse best stay unnoticed, but we may no longer have that option.

So just what happened in the Arizona desert? Were there other survivors the Feds don't know about? Find out by reading "Illegal Alien," available in the collection Flashing Steel, Flashing Fire and on other eBook platforms.

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