Ari 24, 01 / Mar 21, 17 15:12 UTC

Re: If some nation declare war against Asgardia  

I am afraid I have to agree with EyeR here. You are not looking at the specifics, instead you are falling back on stereotypes.

War happens, hell, any aggression happens, because one side has what another side wants. Throughout the history of conflict, this is the reason aggression happens.

What will Asgardia have that every other nation on Earth has? Not much. It will have a better foothold to space exploration. That is the only thing Asgardia will have that other nations won't have. Or, by the time Asgardia is created, they might have that better foothold because they have access to greater resources.

Now, ignoring the ginormous example of not having a reason to attack Asgardia, let's talk about ability.

In order to attack Asgardia, it will have to be a light-based weapon. Kinetic weapons, launched terrestrially, at the speeds necessary to cause damage, would be fairly obvious from space and wouldn't be terribly easy to aim. Missile-based weapons could easily be identified shortly after launch and shot down using light-based weapons.

So, someone shoots a laser at Asgardia. It would have to be a big laser, strong enough to get through the atmosphere (which, I will point out sunlight does all the time), and poke a hole in the habitat.

Other nations, realizing that the aggressor nation has the ability to shoot their satellites out of orbit, would quickly move to destroy or disable said laser.

End result: aggressor nation gets attacked.
Net gain: Negative.
Logical decision: Do not engage.

Now, in the event the aggressor nation isn't logical and has the capability and resources necessary to build such a weapon, what can Asgardia do to prevent being shot by a terrestrial-based light-emitting weapon? Not a damned thing, except maybe cover our surface with something shiny and hope for the best.

Let's talk invasion! That's always fun. We will ignore the expense associated with sending invaders because that's not as fun an exercise, and this whole argument has long gone past the point of credulity.

A vessel approaches Asgardia, population 170,000 people. On board that vessel are 20 (let's go big) highly trained special forces somehow trained in zero-gravity combat, toting weapons capable of breaching a station's hull, and are willing to be on a suicide mission to destroy Asgardia (because capturing 170,000 people who are keeping the station operational isn't really an option).

20 people invading vs. 170,000 people defending their home, with full knowledge of its layout and idiosyncracies. 20 people lose. Hell, even 100 people would lose against those odds if everyone was completely ineffective.

  Updated  on Ari 24, 01 / Mar 21, 17 15:13 UTC, Total number of edits: 2 times

Ari 24, 01 / Mar 21, 17 15:20 UTC

They've some skill. But I'm better. I can stop me from having the chance because I can identify how a long time beforehand and counter it effectively. Any potential harmful move is possible to take out of the equasion entirely or to render an acceptable prevention technique. You might think you're on top of the food chain but I can put you face to face with some things that can change your opinion on that. For the limited time you still get to retain one.

Again, the sensible thing isn't to try and mitigate the chances of attack, the sensible thing is to mitigate chances of success. Which is trivial for any realistical senario you would care to paint.

As for how they'll be getting aboard a station, assuming no massive advancements in antigravity technologies then they'll be going through a standard launch preperations - which if you'd been bothered to look into you should soon realise would preclude anyone bringing up anything we don't specifically allow. Even if there was some new antigrav tech sported then similar procedures are still viable. Once they get up there immigrants are heavily outnumbered and easily countered without requirements for a "dedicated combat force". Descendants would likely be born "up there".

The "neutral" non-interventionists require some sort of force largely due to proximity, and ease of access - two things we are unlikely to feature for quite some time and by the time we do collective maturity is likely to of evolved somewhat due to environmental adjustments. It's also a lot easier to make defensible a single facility than it is an entire country. Internally and externally.

Boots on the ground does literally mean the ground, and placing a hostile force there. It's not something commonly used in reference to your own territory implying by the requirement for boots, movement.

I can do one better than something shiny, and offer targetted reflection. Similar to the Mercedes 1MegaPixel headlamps.

  Updated  on Ari 24, 01 / Mar 21, 17 15:25 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time
Reason: Additional data

Ari 24, 01 / Mar 21, 17 16:00 UTC

Well EyeR, someone has a high opinion of themself. Tho from what I have seen from you, I would never trust you with any sort of security command.


The U.S. already has laser based weaponry capable of shooting down moving aircraft and that technology will only advance by the day. Its reasonable to think that by the time the station is constructed that the U.S.A. and other nations could have laser based weaponry capable of damaging Asgardia. As a former U.S. soldier, I can go ahead and tell you that the U.S.A. does not need much of a reason to attack another nation, beyond you have resources that they want. Or you have the capability (even if you don't have the intention) of damaging their assets. Aka, just having the ABILITY to damage U.S. satellites could be a good enough reason for them to attack. As for costs, the U.S.A. barely cares about cost. The U.S.A. is still fighting guerrilla forces as if they were massed armies. As for resources, if we are a space station, that automatically would give us a monopoly on space exploration and mining, as any ships could be constructed in upper orbit, thus vastly lowering the cost of launching craft. As for invasion. a 20 man force is not an invasion, that is a infiltration crew and their entire purpose is to get in unnoticed. If you only have 20 troops to send, you sure do not want a vastly larger OP4 knowing that they are coming. Such a force would most likely come, bit by bit, under the guise of migrants or tourists. A visible invasion would involve hundreds or thousands of troops. As for missile defenses, we would need people manning the systems guess what, that means you have a military force.

Lets say a nation wants our access to space for their own. They aren't willing to just let us sell or give them materials, as they want us to provide only for them. They also have a laser weapon capable of damaging Asgardia, and they have their own anti-artillery defenses that would shoot down any bombs or missiles we could send their way. The only option at that point would be a manned strike force, landing in a nearby allied nation and moving into enemy territory to disable the anti-artillery system to allow our own weaponry to disable their laser weapon. You cant count on a cyber attack as the system's controlling the weaponry are likely to be closed.

  Last edited by:  George Vanderslice (Asgardian)  on Ari 24, 01 / Mar 21, 17 16:31 UTC, Total number of edits: 2 times

Ari 24, 01 / Mar 21, 17 18:18 UTC

You would trust someone? That's your first failing. Humans are not very reliable at the best of times. They are inattentive, have poor reaction times, make stupid decisions, and fail to act when they should. By the time you've blinked it should all be over.

The US has basic laser technology that requires a massive power input to achieve very little at great distances. It basically heats up either the fuel tank or warhead to cause RUD. There's nothing new about this technology, what is new is the shrinking of the power supply to the point where it can fit on a heavy support vehicle. There's nothing new about refelection to source, or another asset of theirs as defence, either.

The US may be feel threatened by "capabilities" - that's not a particularly good reason to add in another that will make them even less comfortable. Eventually the claims of lacking intent to destroy their lawful property will be taken as truth by continual example of this never happening. Not even the USA would be stupid enough to assure their own destruction by raining death from debris, and even their troops are not going to be willing for assured suicide runs. The USA are fighting "gurrrilla forces" with conventional warfare tactics, but these forces was fabricated specifically for them to do so.

20 troops would be about all you'd be fitting into a standard launch, and then they would be overly cramped. Getting hundreds or thousands into orbit is likely to take months with daily launches - and each time one crests the atmosphere we can force it back down. Or just enforce minimal distances until they run low on food, air, fuel and have to abort. Should they somehow get near an airlock, and we for some reason don't just vent their atmos into space as they attempt to pressurise then even thousands strong they are compressed into an area that's easy to deal with promptly as they cross the threshold, any weaponry removed, cable-tied and kicked into the corner. Five people can do one in less than fifteen seconds, and in rotation less than 100 people can sucessfully defend the airlock against thousands. If we didn't let them get ½ way through the airlock, then vent their atmosphere. or take advantage of the nice neat line and mow them down.

Infiltration is an amusing concept - and then what would you expect them to do once aboard? I sense you have placed as much thought into this as your other arguments. Like rather than be given something someone would go through extreme effort and assured failure in attempting to take it.

To be able to build something of a structural size to suitably and safely consider mass residence then it's likely there's going to be far too much material - just in the way of ten tonne cargo pods arriving every 30s or so from the asteroid belt, let alone anything we make from it - to be able to viably consider the likes of anti-artillery to compensate. That will run out of ammo, we're not running out of things to throw. And should be able to throw a lot in an incredibly small timeframe, from a lot of different angles. Which it why it's even more important to erradicate defective thinking like revenge, or "pre-emptive strike". The laser based system is likely going to be ineffective against anything, and that's before you account for rotation. The most fragile exposure being the thermal dissipation systems, which will natively be ready to dissipate gigawatts, or if my spec terrawatts.

We shouldn't need to concenrate on any form of attack, as previously mentioned, mitigation is all that is required.

  Updated  on Ari 24, 01 / Mar 21, 17 18:21 UTC, Total number of edits: 3 times
Reason: typo

Ari 24, 01 / Mar 21, 17 21:35 UTC


Yes the U.S. laser technology wouldnt be capable of damaging a space station today, but neither do we have a space station today. Technology advances and gets more powerful. As for destruction, you underestimate the U.S., if it feels its global dominance being threatened, it is willing to go to extreme lengths to keep its power. Look what happened during its Cold War with the USSR. The U.S. was ready to launch an all out nuclear attack at anytime, even tho such would ensure its own destruction. As for the 20 troops, yes, 20 maybe able all you could get But if we have the capability of transporting enough cargo to build such a large station, then such technology has the capability to launch larger numbers of troops. As for infiltrating, yes, if we knew who the attackers are, and that they are coming and hostile, it would be easy to neutralize them....but if it were that easy, then they are not very good at infiltration. I'm not saying they will metaphorically kick in our front door and start shooting. But since we will be a nation of immigrants, it would not be difficult to insert sleeper cells into positions where they would have control of some of our critical systems. So no, mitigation is not all that is needed.

Ari 25, 01 / Mar 22, 17 02:23 UTC

I don't underestimate anything, I know precisely what I'm dealing with. It would take out a tin can like the ISS, if it can move fast enough to keep in one spot, burn through the outer hull, and then the inner pressure vessel as it's rotation, yaw, pitch, and trajectory carry it over. At about five miles per second. Maximum effective range on that weapons system? Cone radial? Response profile? Your largest target is the largest square foot - the radiatior panels. Your "easiest" chance to disrupt such would be to attempt to prevent them from bleeding heat, preferably adding to it, causing thermal overload forcing shutdown and or abandonment. I doubt that particular system or any I'm aware of in operation will be able to punch through atmos and then deliver more than the 63kW of additional thermal load it can currently cope with. Certainly not for long enough to actually become a dissipation issue. It eats more energy from flecks of paint in MMOD strike.

And a little tin can is not something I'd consider safe for mass habitation. What I would consider safe is a meter thick MgAL3 foam grown over the top of a micromirror servo array so should something burn through the modular and easily replacable cubes before natural rotation required to sustain artifical gravity combined with trajectorial momentums can spread the energy dissipations it's reflected back before it gets near the 7½CM thick titanium skinning the 5 meter thick NiFe raditation shield protecting the outer pressure hull protecting the inner pressure hull. There's more danger from Russia's ion beam technology and this will also feature a small target opportunity and the energy is possibly to absorb and store in the supercapacitor that doubles as the graphene subframe for the superstructure for later use.

The technology to launch large cargo exists. What doesn't exist is the thousands of years it would take to line up orbital slots to do it. I can demonstrate patience, but this is unacceptable. Alternate methods are the only way to achieve this, and I personally advocate an exponentially expansive deep space mining solution, that could in theory start to provide for such options closer to 2060, whilst developing the orbital manufacturing capacity to reduce the lift weight from a few hundred megatonnes to a few tonnes of equipment and consumables. And it's really not difficult to make something dangerous for someone to interfere with.

Position of control over critical systems is unlikely in any sane deployment senario. Think about it. 173k of organic thermal output requiring 17gW of dissipation, steadily attempting to convert all the atmosphere to CO2, adding H20 to it - the total amount of people potential to inhale over the volume of air in the system could noticably adjust the air pressure, localised and rapid compensations required - In one room someone has the thermostat set to 33°C and the one next door is set to 24°C - the system is going to have to deal with everything "petty" on an automated basis, let alone anything critical. Teams of thousands could not pay the same attentions to the meta data from the sensor network alone - let alone the sensor data - fast enough, with enough accuracy to be ½ as useful as a chain of simple AI. Technology that can detect when it has been interfered with is possible to deploy on more than just cash machines and more hardware is getting this as a default feature, let alone anything reponsible for anything serious that would clearly be based on known good hardware. Known because we designed and produced it ourselves from scratch.

So, yes. Mitigations are all that's needed.

Ari 25, 01 / Mar 22, 17 20:34 UTC

You are vastly underestimating the capabilities of nations like the United States. And how quickly weapons technology advances. You are also overestimating your own ability. If you think that you alone can outsmart every military leader on the planet, then you are delusional. You keep trying to sound like you, only you, know what's best for Asgardian. I have seen your posts across multiple boards and you keep trying to sound like you are an expert in all those fields. I doubt you even have any military experience of your own, yet you try to sound like you are a military strategist. We are not playing a game here, we are discussing the formation of a nation.

Ari 25, 01 / Mar 22, 17 20:49 UTC

Again, I'm underestimating nothing. I'm more than aware. Both of existing capacity and rate of advancements. I'm also not overestimating my abilities.

I don't need to outsmart anything. I'll have computers do that for me. I'm not an idiot. There's a difference in performing some basic research or having some experience and trying to "sound like an expert". It's subtle, so I'm not surprised it has escaped you. Any military experience or training I have or have not fails to be impacted by your doubts, which has equal impact on the legitimacy of my observations.

This isn't a game, you're quite right, which is precisely why sanity should be introduced into the equasion. It will save generating a lot of needless conflict.

Ari 25, 01 / Mar 22, 17 21:23 UTC

And I don't believe you are an idiot. You are obviously intelligent. I just think you are delusional, naive, and overconfident. And yes, there should be a sane approach to building a nation, but refusing to have a security/military force, in a nation that is designed to be a forerunner in research and fields like space mining, thus resource wealthy, is insane. I am not nor have I ever advocated needless violence, nor do I believe that Asgardian should be belligerent in anyway, but it should have the ability to protect itself from any threats it could face.

Ari 25, 01 / Mar 22, 17 21:40 UTC

Protection is viable without a "military".

Space isn't exactly the safest place to be, making it dangerous is not entirely a challenge. If the need arises, any situation is rapidly engineered - or naturally designed - to result in a worse outcome than when they started for any potential attacker. Combined with mature approaches like not hoarding the wealth of resources we have access to solely to ourselves should reasonably serve to preclude the intent.

  Updated  on Ari 25, 01 / Mar 22, 17 21:42 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time
Reason: typo

Ari 25, 01 / Mar 22, 17 22:42 UTC

Protection actually isn't viable without military. Anything capable of defending a state or nation is classified as its military/security force. And to make sure you do not misunderstand my position: I am not saying that we shouldn't mitigate, but that shouldn't be our only recourse for defense. No mitigation is absolute. You must have plans and setups in place before a crisis arises. And its not just about us sharing, thats a dangerously blinded view of international politics.

Hypothetical: We find ourselves in a neutral position while two nations we supply are at war with one another, they both send us an ultimatum: "Stop supplying our enemies or we declare war on you as well." while the other nation tells us "If you stop supplying us during this war, we will declare war on you as well.". Both sides also have weaponry capable of severely damaging Asgardia, and/or a method of getting their forces aboard the station (be it an advance in launch craft capable of sending multiple troop carrying ships up at once, having undercover agents already aboard the station maybe even Asgardian citizens who are still loyal to those nations, or other).

Planning and preparation is key. As I said earlier, by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.

  Last edited by:  George Vanderslice (Asgardian)  on Ari 26, 01 / Mar 23, 17 00:44 UTC, Total number of edits: 2 times

Ari 26, 01 / Mar 23, 17 02:01 UTC

It's most certainly viable. There is a big difference between "military" and "security". Just being capable of defense, regardless of scale, does not intrinsically conform to the definition of "military".

We should have no viable, mature response that would require any other recourse than mitigation. You cannot encourage peace with weaponry. You build a gun, I build one with motion tracking and prediction. To counteract this you increase range, and firepower. Which will in turn lead to me increasing firepower. This isn't a clever game to play - it's best we do not play it all. Then it can't become a competition of who can cause the most damages. There's plenty of ways to misuse things, we should concentrate on not doing that.

The system itself would be absolute mitigation. Anything less than that level of self awareness would be unsafe for mass habitation. I'm not suggesting it will be sentient, as such, but more aware of everything. It would have to be. Anything perculiar occuring with a sensor or metadata would be of instant interest. This is just to achieve and maintain "normality".

To entertain the laughability of there was some weapon capable of "severely damaging" an orbital vessel specced to similar as proposed earlier, what would this be precisely? Almost any energy based weaponry is possible to harvest or redirect. Something like laser isn't going to be able to transfer enough thermal energy to melt MgAl3 foam, considering that a lack of artifical gravity system strongly suggests mass habitation would require replicated gravity via the likes of centrifugal force which would naturally prohibit focus into a single spot long enough to be of required effect - and should somehow, magically, the vectoring of the craft in it's orbit not cause alignment failure and the foam failed to bubble up around the thermal impact site the micromirrors below will be able to make some productive use of the energy used to attack via way of focus and return to source or to another "strategic asset" of theirs, as well as dissipating that energy over a larger surface area. As previously covered, ballistic projectiles are unlikely to gain sufficient proximity to be of concern - this is easily achieved by dozens of methods. If they do magically impact, then the meter thick MgAl3 foam forming the native MMOD strike defense should absorb most of the energy(you should look into what that will take) if any makes it through that the micromirrors should be easy to replace and damages to the Titanium skin on the five meter thick NiFe radiation shield are likely to be cosmetic at best.

Mitigation consistently and effectively - with ease - shall inspire lethargy to the the concept of attacking in the first place, and long term the effort cannot be sustained. You should understand Tsun Tzu. Again, "ground troops" is pretty rediculous, even with number ingress is limited to airlocks. The whole principle of how they operate allows for offensive and defensive capacity. Structured sensibly it doesn't matter how many are "loyal" to other nations they cannot really do anything - why would the any of the hardware allow itself to allow it to happen? Worst case senario is total shudown of complete subsystem - in a currently functional and nominal system, allowing time to, in the worst case, replace whatever was damaged(spares not being available is a rediculous concept, this is already achievable) - at best in a sensible design only impact a selective area for an incredibly limited time as the first inappropriate attempt to interface with something would of generated "interesting" data to hand through the chains they should not really be expecting to be doing a great deal afterwards. It's not as if there's anywhere to run or hide.

A nation attempting to blackmail is another amusing concept. Again, weaponry isn't likely to be an effective tool against something that big, that far, that well defended. And bringing it down is likely to end all life on the planet as multiple massive impacts cause chaos across the surface and likely dust clouds to obscure solar input for decades. Builtin deadmans switch, I rarely operate without one. The way you deal with it is tell them to stop being children, and they should learn to play nicely. As a nation I would respond that If they should have a productive message of peace towards their enemy then we will happily become a neutral go-between but in the interests of neutrality we shall continue to provide the people of both nations with food, medical supplies, goods and services.

Because literally, there is nothing they can do about it.

There is no evidence of failure to prepare. There seems to be a lot of evidence of failure to prepare the arguments you rely upon.

  Updated  on Ari 26, 01 / Mar 23, 17 02:03 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time
Reason: typo

Ari 26, 01 / Mar 23, 17 02:31 UTC

Mitigation alone is not a viable or practical long term defensive strategy, even the word "mitigation" only means a reduction in severity, not an elimination of the problem. No nation has ever remained secure without a military/security force. And no, when it comes to a national scale, there is not a real difference between military and security in the context of national defense. Even nations with no formal "armed forces" still maintain security and counter-terrorism agencies (which is a system I advocate for Asgardia). As optimistic as you are, the idea that violence will never come to Asgardia's door is simply incorrect and foolish. When it does show up, we will need a force capable of repelling it. Not some improvised, hope it works because we didn't test it, solution; but a ready formed, trained, and equipped force. A force capable of repelling threats both external and internal.

  Last edited by:  George Vanderslice (Asgardian)  on Ari 26, 01 / Mar 23, 17 02:40 UTC, Total number of edits: 2 times

Ari 26, 01 / Mar 23, 17 05:16 UTC

You can't reduce the capacity for someone else to decide to do something stupid entirely. That's demonstrated consistently. What you can remove entirely is the possibility this will have any particular effect. Beyond demonstrating futility.

We have no need of "counter-terrorism" agencies. We have no requirement to sponsor and organise dissenting factions of foreign nations in order to create controlled disruption or engage in prolific digital terrorism and generally become another source of the other simlilar devious initatives that such firms are directly and indirectly responsible for.

I've not said "violence" will never turn up at Asgardia's door - just that a military isn't going to stop that from happening, as evidenced by anyone ever invaded whilst holding a full time military force(which after the success of the royal navy was rapidly adopted by most nations) and when it does happen it's possible to safely handle without a military force.

Ari 26, 01 / Mar 23, 17 06:01 UTC

If you really think there is no need for a counter-terrorism unit, on a station in the harsh environment of space, with population of tens of thousands, then you aren't as intelligent as I thought. That type of situation would be a prime jewel for a terrorist, disable a few critical systems, rig a part of the station to explode, etc. Lots of causalities, with little effort. Counter-terrorism does not host a terrorist faction, it counter-acts them. So the people can go on living and going about their business, while not having to worry about some insane person blowing them to bits because their religion dictates that if they kill non-believers, they get a special place in the afterlife; or because they have an undiagnosed mental illness. You really have no idea what you are getting into.

  Last edited by:  George Vanderslice (Asgardian)  on Ari 26, 01 / Mar 23, 17 06:09 UTC, Total number of edits: 2 times