Halo Nation


The Veil of Spooks

It's October 2552. He's on a Chatter, in a public forum, where dozens of people are discussing the Human-Covenant War. What is the common thought?

Everything is fine, and the UNSC is driving back the borders of the Covenant. This war will be over soon. Reach's minute Covenant presence would be expunged, and soon, the UNSC would valiantly brandish their new Spartan Lasers into the fight, more than enough to crush the menace of the conglomerate.

In a galaxy where everyone is in danger, can the UNSC really afford to cover up and aggrandize everything they do? Is it right to purposely manipulate data just to prevent mass hysteria? Imagine if you were in control of the news, and you realized the horrors of the conflict - every human being that was maimed, burnt or otherwise vaporized, every world that was turned into a molten ball of glass and cinder, every insult and condemnation delivered by alien tongues to your brothers and sisters. What would you do?

In Second Sunrise Over New Mombasa, this potent and fertile point for storytelling is opined. Same with the vaunted Haunted Apiary ARG, which hyped up Halo 2 in its heyday. The first of which is what I am truly fascinated and knowledgeable about, so my situation borrows far mor from it than the latter. This is about what I call the Veil of Spooks, a term for massive cover-up by UNSC forces.

Needless to say, the UNSC armed forces have already made many of the decisions for you. They can no longer risk panic from the people, or poor morale among the troops. There simply isn't an option for psychological problems holding us back. Humanity can't fight that many battles at once. But the fact is there. Right in front of you. Humanity is extinct. Their population is now almost endemic to Earth, with only pockets of Inner Colonies and Rebel hideaways left to witness their neighbors simmer in the vacuum. Could you really tell them the truth, had you the choice?

Look at them. They're so happy,at Earth. Not a one seems more aware of the war than the other, continuing their daily lives as they always did. It was always so far away, in the Outer Colonies. An ugly little rumor, just like the Innies had been nearly thirty years before. Some might've even went so far as to call the Covenant nonexistent. The UNSC's ability to manipulate the news, the Nets, and even everyday conversations had become sublime. An inherited trait from governments before, no doubt.

But in days, in weeks. The news would come. And when the ships finally did rain their marauders on the world, not a single soul could claim them to be bogeymen any more. The Veil of Spooks broken, the world would end.

Could you really watch it all unfold, with a comfortable conscience? To not give those poor, gullible people a glimmer of a warning? If it cost you your own life, would you put it to the cause of giving knowledge? Or would you simply let it happen?

This is a question of moral ambiguity, and of personal opinion, with no right or wrong answers. Let your instincts be your guide, and tell me. With the doom of the Veil of Spooks coming either way, would you forewarn your brethren, at the cost of your life and reputation, to let the few know that it was coming, or would you stifle your voice, leaving it in the hands of the defenders?

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