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Halo Chronicles, Interlude 1.2: Mars
Posted By: Otokam<ueno@its.caltech.edu>
Date: 27 January 2000, 12:28 a.m.

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Citizens of Mars! A new era is upon us. The days of hunger and poverty, panic and confusion, and anarchy and chaos are now over. For a century, you have been deceived. You have suffered through the empty promises of Earth, as well as by the extreme measures of your own, rebellious brethren. Together, both factions turned your pioneering efforts into a political and physical battlefield, laying waste to all they touched! Ignoring the victims of this terrible conflict, the UESC and the MIDA had ruthlessly fought each other for political dominance, and ultimately, convenience. They have ruined Mars, ruined your homes, and ruined your lives! When you asked for supplies, they stole your moon. When you begged for food, they brought you war. When you hoped for change, they established terror. And for the last 28 years, Mars Colony wanted nothing more than attention, and the United Earth Government, who had found a new toy with which to play, turned its back, hoping its failed experiment would go away. Good citizens of Mars, your adventurous ancestors forged the future of humanity on this barren planet. Two hundred years ago, the best and the brightest had abandoned the amenities of life on Earth in order to gain humans a foothold in space. They were the pioneers of this modern age! The rich, greedy gluttons who owe their fortunes to the legendary exploits of your brave ancestors, now sit idly by, while Mars grows weaker by the day! Injustice! Injustice does not even begin to describe this intolerable behavior! In a darker age of humanity, such dishonorable conduct would have been punishable by death!

We are, however, beyond our barbarous past. In this enlightened age, we must learn forgiveness, and compassion for the failings of our enemies. Neither Earth nor MIDA have injured and abandoned Mars out of malice. They were not the bully taking advantage of weaker prey. They did not act out of contempt, good Martian citizens, they acted out of fear. Yes, friends, it is they who are scared!

The collective spirit and mind of Mars Colony has grown beyond the expectations of its creators. The spineless politicians of earth cannot possibly contain the power that lies within this red planet. The awesome power flows from every natural mountain, every valley, and every river bed. It flows through the expertly terraformed forests, grassland, oceans, and fields. This energy, channeled through the bodies of you, the Martian colonists, is a formidable force. Citizens of Mars, do you not feel it? It is the life force of our planet. It is the strength of Ares, my friends, the ancient God of War! Do you not feel it? It is crying out to be released! Good citizens of Mars! Friends! Bask in its warmth, in its strength, in its Glory! Hold in your hand the power which all of earth is afraid to harness! Let us, my friends, unleash the beast within, and restore our planet to its former glory! Let us show the rest of humanity the power of Mars! Let us show the United Government of Earth that we will not disappear! -Rudolph Montgomery I, Archduke of Elysium Premier Speech to the Martian Populace; Old MIDA Statehouse, New Cydonia, Mars. Apr. 17, 2500

The events directly following the completion of Montgomery's speech have been widely argued to have been the clinching moment of Mars' acception of their new leader. After a positive, yet lukewarm reception of his speech, Montgomery continued, "Ah, yes. Many before me have filled you with false hope and broken promises. I am not a politician, friends. I am a man of action, not of words. Therefore, here I will terminate this speech and introduce to you the first spacegoing vessel under the complete ownership of you, the Martian people."

On cue, the men of the 1024th legion snapped to action, pushing aside the crowd to form a giant perimeter hundreds of meters in diameter. At Montgomery's command, a low rumbling noise emanated from the skies, growing louder and louder by the second. It was a sound the older population instantly recognized, and a racket of optimistic anticipation grew among the assembly. Within a minute, an enormous cargo canister broke through the light overcast clouds, and decelerated to land gently inside the giant ring of troops. Over the deafening cheers of joyous celebration, Rudolph Montgomery announced, "I introduce the Cargo and Resources In-System Transport Prometheus, and its first of many foodstuff shipments to the planet Mars!"