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Thinking about military use of voices...

"Hell's Gate" and "Hell Hath No Fury", by David, Linda Evans, and Joelle Presby, take the clash of science and magic to a whole new dimension...join us in a friendly discussion of this engrossing series!
Thinking about military use of voices...
Post by n7axw   » Sun Jan 17, 2016 5:07 pm

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I've been thinking about Neshok and Harshu's solution to the problem that the voices presented. It has been setup as a criminal outrage in the story...

But is it?

Is there any advancing army who would have reacted differently given what the Arcanans knew about voices? Armies have always neutralized the other sides scouts and spies by whatever means needed including killing them.

Is this really different? Harshu needed the element of surprise to keep advancing. The reason he was repulsed at Ft Salby is that Janike had his glimpse and the fort was given time to prepare. Not killing the voices guarantees that the enemy will be forewarned of Harshu's next attack.

So what do you think? Do we have atrocities here or are the voices simply regretable casualties of war?

Not nominating Neshok and Harshu for sainthood, by the way...

Don

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When any group seeks political power in God's name, both religion and politics are instantly corrupted.
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Re: Thinking about military use of voices...
Post by Astelon   » Sun Jan 17, 2016 9:24 pm

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In a limited sense you are correct. The voices at the communications relays would have likely have to be killed, to prevent getting a message out. However Arcanan actions go far beyond this. Even after being informed (with truth spells proving it) that a voice can not communicate through a portal, they still killed those who were captured on the wrong side of the portal.

Then we take the account of Neshok's murder of the voice from the Thermyn fort (HHNF Chapter 12), who had already been captured, moved through the portal to New Uromath, and had already had time to toss his falcon pin. Simply put that unnamed voice was in no position to be any danger, and would have gotten a message out, if he was able, long before Neshok shot him.

Next is the murder of Folsar chan Tergis at Fort Ghartoun (chapter 23). The fort had been taken, was in a universe controlled by the Arcanans, and the voice network had already been severed. But Neshok shot him out of hand, despite the fact that he know chan Tergis was unable to communicate, and was in no way a danger.

Finally there is the case of Syrail near Fort Ghartoun (who's situation is split between chapter 23 and 24). A young child who only escaped murder because his father sacrificed himself. Syrail was in Arcanan controlled territory, with no voice net to communicate with. He was also not in the military in any way. Ordering his death is simply inexcusable under the circumstances.

Now someone might say that a voice could escape and spread news of the invasion; however this is extremely unlikely, bordering on the impossible. With the voice chain cut the voice can't simply sneak across the portal to send a message, he would have to travel hundreds of miles to send the message. With the aerial surveillance and transport capacity the voice would find it an impossible task. He is far to likely to get caught trying on foot or regular horse, and the front would move before the voice could get in range.

I suspect that if the Arcanans had bothered they could have come up with another solution for captured voices. They don't have spells to put badly injured people into a medical coma? They have stasis spells that preserve food and bodies, can a person be put in stasis and survive (or even have a chance to survive)? What about a compulsion spell that renders prisoners obedient and docile? If you use either you can move voices far enough to the rear that they will not be back into contact until you release them.

The Arcanans were reacting in fear without thought. They wanted to murder voices.
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Re: Thinking about military use of voices...
Post by PeterZ   » Sun Jan 17, 2016 9:40 pm

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Nicely written. I would only quibble that Neshok and mul Gurthik thought about those murders through and through. Mul Gurthik wanted atrocities to accrue to the Andaran military. Neshok wanted the come up with every reason he could come up with that allowed him to indulge in his sadism.

Yes, those two wanted the murders to happen. Mil Gurthik wanted those murders in as clear a violation of Arcana's understanding of the rules of war as could possibly be manufactured. Neshok thought long an hard for any excuse to murder and any way to avoid any punishment.

All of it was calculated brutality.

Astelon wrote:In a limited sense you are correct. The voices at the communications relays would have likely have to be killed, to prevent getting a message out. However Arcanan actions go far beyond this. Even after being informed (with truth spells proving it) that a voice can not communicate through a portal, they still killed those who were captured on the wrong side of the portal.

Then we take the account of Neshok's murder of the voice from the Thermyn fort (HHNF Chapter 12), who had already been captured, moved through the portal to New Uromath, and had already had time to toss his falcon pin. Simply put that unnamed voice was in no position to be any danger, and would have gotten a message out, if he was able, long before Neshok shot him.

Next is the murder of Folsar chan Tergis at Fort Ghartoun (chapter 23). The fort had been taken, was in a universe controlled by the Arcanans, and the voice network had already been severed. But Neshok shot him out of hand, despite the fact that he know chan Tergis was unable to communicate, and was in no way a danger.

Finally there is the case of Syrail near Fort Ghartoun (who's situation is split between chapter 23 and 24). A young child who only escaped murder because his father sacrificed himself. Syrail was in Arcanan controlled territory, with no voice net to communicate with. He was also not in the military in any way. Ordering his death is simply inexcusable under the circumstances.

Now someone might say that a voice could escape and spread news of the invasion; however this is extremely unlikely, bordering on the impossible. With the voice chain cut the voice can't simply sneak across the portal to send a message, he would have to travel hundreds of miles to send the message. With the aerial surveillance and transport capacity the voice would find it an impossible task. He is far to likely to get caught trying on foot or regular horse, and the front would move before the voice could get in range.

I suspect that if the Arcanans had bothered they could have come up with another solution for captured voices. They don't have spells to put badly injured people into a medical coma? They have stasis spells that preserve food and bodies, can a person be put in stasis and survive (or even have a chance to survive)? What about a compulsion spell that renders prisoners obedient and docile? If you use either you can move voices far enough to the rear that they will not be back into contact until you release them.

The Arcanans were reacting in fear without thought. They wanted to murder voices.
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Re: Thinking about military use of voices...
Post by n7axw   » Sun Jan 17, 2016 10:59 pm

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Good points, both of you.

The Arcanans could have cut the communication link by just focusing on the voices nearest the portal. That would remove the possibility of any other voices having anyone to talk to...

There is one but here though. Did the Arcanans know that a voice can't operate through a portal? And if they knew, did they believe it... That would have an impact on their options.

Don

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When any group seeks political power in God's name, both religion and politics are instantly corrupted.
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name of Voice re: Thinking about military use of voices...
Post by Howard T. Map-addict   » Mon Jan 18, 2016 12:49 pm

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Astelon, he was named:
"Petty-Captain Waird chan Lyrosk"
Named in the Index, mentioned by Velvelig.
I list him both among the Military People and the Voices.

Howard True Map-addict

Astelon wrote:

Then we take the account of Neshok's murder of the voice from the Thermyn fort (HHNF Chapter 12), who had already been captured, moved through the portal to New Uromath, and had already had time to toss his falcon pin. Simply put
**Petty-Captain Waird chan Lyrosk**
that unnamed voice was in no position to be any danger, and would have gotten a message out, if he was able, long before Neshok shot him.

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Re: Thinking about military use of voices...
Post by Astelon   » Mon Jan 18, 2016 7:08 pm

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Thank You Howard, I had thought his name was mentioned somewhere, but couldn't find it. Should of checked the appropriate thread.

n7axw wrote:There is one but here though. Did the Arcanans know that a voice can't operate through a portal? And if they knew, did they believe it... That would have an impact on their options.


Yes the knew. They were told multiple times, by multiple prisoners with truth spells confirming it. There was plenty of evidence that the truth spells were working properly too.
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Re: Thinking about military use of voices...
Post by Howard T. Map-addict   » Tue Jan 19, 2016 3:19 pm

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DW tricked you.
He mentioned chan Lyrosk's name seven pages *earlier* on
page 158 as the current Ft Brithik Voice Erthek Vardan
thinks of how happy he is that chan Lyrosk is about to join
him at Brithik. Then Arcanans kill Vardan.
On page 165 Neshok seeks out and kills another Voice,
but by then DW sees no need to mention his name a second time.
Neshok looks more mechanically-evil with the name omitted.

Note that this is the first time that Arcanans have found two
Voices in the same place. Hell's Gate Lines had none; Fallen
Timbers and Ft. Shaylar had one each. The Arcanans might have
guessed that Brithik also had only one - if there was another,
why had he not been sent forward? - and not looked for another.

Indeed, Vardan would have been sent to Ft Shaylar the next day.
Arcana lucked out to catch two Voices meeting then!
Arcana had several such bits of luck! They caught the Flicker
at Fallen Timbers in the same shot as the Voice, without even
knowing that Flickers existed! Had he been in another part of
the clearing, or hiding "just in case" of attack, then he
could have warned Fort Shaylar, and their Voice Baulwan could
have been hidden away from the fort, and guarded.
If, if, if.

HTM

Astelon wrote:Thank You Howard, I had thought his name was mentioned somewhere, but couldn't find it. Should of checked the appropriate thread.

n7axw wrote:There is one but here though. Did the Arcanans know that a voice can't operate through a portal? And if they knew, did they believe it... That would have an impact on their options.


Yes the knew. They were told multiple times, by multiple prisoners with truth spells confirming it. There was plenty of evidence that the truth spells were working properly too.
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Re: Thinking about military use of voices...
Post by Jonathan_S   » Wed Feb 24, 2016 3:43 pm

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Astelon wrote:In a limited sense you are correct. The voices at the communications relays would have likely have to be killed, to prevent getting a message out. However Arcanan actions go far beyond this. Even after being informed (with truth spells proving it) that a voice can not communicate through a portal, they still killed those who were captured on the wrong side of the portal.

[snip]
I suspect that if the Arcanans had bothered they could have come up with another solution for captured voices. They don't have spells to put badly injured people into a medical coma? They have stasis spells that preserve food and bodies, can a person be put in stasis and survive (or even have a chance to survive)? What about a compulsion spell that renders prisoners obedient and docile? If you use either you can move voices far enough to the rear that they will not be back into contact until you release them.

The Arcanans were reacting in fear without thought. They wanted to murder voices.

I think it is a very small, and non-plot, spoiler to mention that in The Road to Hell we see that their military already has special stun/knockout rounds for their arbalists.
Not something that would be routinely issued, but once they learned of the limits of a Voice something that could have been easily issued to take Voices alive and (possibly combined with follow-up coma spells) kept them unconscious until moved a portal or two up chain.
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SPOILER Re: Thinking about military use of voices...
Post by Randomiser   » Thu Feb 25, 2016 5:39 pm

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Jonathan_S wrote:
Astelon wrote:In a limited sense you are correct. The voices at the communications relays would have likely have to be killed, to prevent getting a message out. However Arcanan actions go far beyond this. Even after being informed (with truth spells proving it) that a voice can not communicate through a portal, they still killed those who were captured on the wrong side of the portal.

[snip]
I suspect that if the Arcanans had bothered they could have come up with another solution for captured voices. They don't have spells to put badly injured people into a medical coma? They have stasis spells that preserve food and bodies, can a person be put in stasis and survive (or even have a chance to survive)? What about a compulsion spell that renders prisoners obedient and docile? If you use either you can move voices far enough to the rear that they will not be back into contact until you release them.

The Arcanans were reacting in fear without thought. They wanted to murder voices.

I think it is a very small, and non-plot, spoiler to mention that in The Road to Hell we see that their military already has special stun/knockout rounds for their arbalists.
Not something that would be routinely issued, but once they learned of the limits of a Voice something that could have been easily issued to take Voices alive and (possibly combined with follow-up coma spells) kept them unconscious until moved a portal or two up chain.


SPOILER



Regiment Captain Velvelig ruminates at one point in RTH that killing off captured enemy Voices was standard doctrine for Sharonan armies too, until the protocols for turning Voices 'off' were worked out. But it was so far back in history that most Sharonans have forgotten the fact.
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Re: SPOILER Re: Thinking about military use of voices...
Post by Louis R   » Fri Feb 26, 2016 4:24 pm

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Randomiser wrote:
SPOILER



Regiment Captain Velvelig ruminates at one point in RTH that killing off captured enemy Voices was standard doctrine for Sharonan armies too, until the protocols for turning Voices 'off' were worked out. But it was so far back in history that most Sharonans have forgotten the fact.


He also notes that what they did pisses him off despite the fact that he does remember that it was normal practice back in the day.
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