Whenever I see some movie, such as Independence Day, which depicts an alien invasion of Earth, with the Earth winning, I can’t help but laugh. Why do people make such stupid movies? Instead of seeing a sort of feel good fantasy of how the Earthlings will defeat the Aliens, usually led by the United States, I want to see a real depiction of what would really happen if aliens decided to colonize the Earth, or harvest humans for whatever reasons. I wish someone would make such a movie, a movie which would show the total annihilation of mankind if aliens did in fact decide to destroy us.
The bottom line is this: if aliens have the technology to travel millions of light years just to get here, we would be fucked. There would be no contest. Any civilization out there with such overwhelming technological superiority would overwhelm us with that technology. They would laugh at our puny little weapons and unsophisticated machines. We would stand no chance. In the end, we would be like cattle herded into a slaughterhouse. Why else would any other civilization travel the immense distances of space to come here, except to get something from us? I doubt such an encounter would be a friendly one.
I often marvel at how vast and unknown the universe is. It is right there, all around us, above our heads in the sky. At night we can see the innumerable stars from different parts of that strange, vast world of space. What is out there? What exactly is the universe? Despite the fact that we know it exists, no one really understands it, how to came to be, where it ends, if it ends, and what is out there. The vastness of the universe shows how infinitesimally puny and ignorant we really are. We still don’t even understand something as basic as gravity. It is all quite humbling, really. So if any other beings out there have the intelligence and ability to travel those vast distances to get here, to find this small speck of rock in the vastness of space, and if their intentions were hostile, that would be the end of mankind.
I wish someone would make a movie of this nature: the end of mankind after an alien invasion, without any hope, and how people would act and behave in that situation. It is probably too dark for a Hollywood movie; after all, who would want to see it? In the end, the need for hope is part of our human nature. We like to think we could overcome such odds. Hollywood likes happy endings.
But I think a dark, completely hopeless alien invasion film would be an interesting piece of entertainment.
I would never wish this on anyone but you could waste two hours of your young, useful life on the movie Skyline. It is totally stupid, but fits your line of thinking almost. But I would suggest you read the synopsis on IMDB and skip the brain cell killing flick. Really, just ignore that I posted this.
This reminds me of Vietnam or similar. We send men to the Moon, we are evolved, they are just savages with bamboo sticks, or beduins, or stuff. And what’s happened.
Anyway if aliens are so superior they would have no interest in us, like you leave alone an ant colony, and we have not anymore the tech for manned space exploration. For sure they not need to arrive here for some minerals.
Actually there is something precious here, the life diversity – when the last panda will be dead, there will be no anymore pandas in this planet in this galaxy and whole universe. Aliens could arrive and prevent us destroy this planet. While if some billions humans die, who cares they are so many there is inflaton.
This guy says there friendly… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PZ1zfFJGDo
This guy says THEY’RE friendly…http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PZ1zfFJGDo
Your point mostly stands , but there are some caveats:
1. For one, why would any interstellar species want to invade or attack another one in the first place. Usually the technology to get you into interstellar space is going to mean you have the capability to mine asteroids and planets, some space manufacturing facilities, access to good automation, tons of supplies (assuming the trips are long and sub light as in Independence Day, you’ll need to make or bring lots of supplies for your year long or decade long trips ) and most importantly – tons of energy. Unless Earth was some kind of threat to all that, why would you even waste time attacking it. Heck, you could get water, alkanes, oxygen, minerals, etc. from asteroids and the outer planets ( or the possible tens of thousands of small “dwarf planets beyond Pluto) and we could do absolutely nothing to stop you. The only realistic scenarios I’ve ever come up with for Alien Invasions are:
A. You have an interstellar empire and despite the totally useless and needless physical and resource cost, you have to make sure everyone submits. Earth tells you where to stick it, so you invade.
B. Your ship is damaged by accident or war or its a really small ship. You can’t get resources peacefully like you normally do as your replicators, extractors, whateveryouwannacallthem aren’t working or aren’t available. You would try to bargain with Earth but you can’t communicate and have no time to “establish hailing frequencies” or such.
C. It has been determined that Earth has a case of Interstellar Cooties that threatens to spread. In view of the Kardasians and the American culture in general, I think this most likely 😉
D. And lastly, against the rules of the Civilized Galaxy, you be a space pirate and you and your crew want a home base along with alien women. Normally you’d just set up on an asteroid or uninhabited world but — no alien babes! No gold! No something. Maybe unobtainium.
2. Believe it or not, germs cannot be ruled out as a danger. Exobiological protocols for Mars would actually currently not even allow human exploration there as we carry too many germs that could possibly cause extinction of any Martian life via outcompeting them. Remember things like tardigans and other extremophiles can survive the vacuum of space and hard radiation environments; recently they’ve done experiments and found some of our stuff can grow very well in a Martian environment. Also, current protocol would call for a few weeks of quarantine for any of our astronauts who went to Mars. Now, if the alien invaders are used to going planetside I would suspect they have much of this under control and lots of experience and blah blah. But if not , it’s always possible that if they are somehow exposed a single Earth bacterium could wipe them out. War of the Worlds wasn’t that bad as science fiction. Apparently the Martians had never tried to invade another world before and so this sort of thing totally slipped their minds, or maybe they felt they were so desperate that they would risk it.
3. Computer viruses cannot be ruled out, esp if the aliens are lazy and relying on old and mostly automated processes they caretake or use more than understand. As unrealistic as “Independence Day” was (and unrealistic being an understatement) the one part I thought held up was given 40 years and one of their ships that we could decompile and figure out their computer code. If they use binary type computers this should be possible, if they are using quantum computers -well, we are screwed.
Other than that, you are utterly right. If , for whatever reason aliens chose to invade or exterminate us, we’d pretty much be reduced to bending over and taking it hard. Repeatedly.
Southern Man said:
As an astronomy professor, I’ve been saying this for years. Aliens advanced enough to visit the Earth will have no more in common with us than we do with a mound of termites. If we’re lucky they’ll think we’re cute (“Oh, look social city-building mammals!”) but the most likely outcome would be offhand extermination. Communication? You must be joking. Do you think those bugs are desperately trying to communicate with you as you toss RAID down the hole?
Racer X said:
Some interesting thoughts in this thread. I can see there are many different views on what an alien invasion might actually look like. Thanks for the comments!
You make good points. One reason I would give for an alien invasion would be to harvest us, humans, for whatever reason. Perhaps they would see us a rich food source, in the same way we see cattle. And you are right about War of the Worlds. it is a great book, and seemed realistic enough. I think the Martians invaded because their planet was dying and they were desperate to risk whatever they had to to come here and conquer us. In the end they were not immune to our diseases, sort of like the Indians were not immune to the White man’s diseases when he came to the Americas. I think around 90% of the Indian population was wiped out because of that.
Short of some totally unseen technology that lets one warp vast amounts of space with very little energy or enter some “hyperspace” with little energy, the cost to import meat from Earth would be prohibitive far beyond your dreams. It’s been said that the cost in terms of energy to push a two pound space probe to 20 or 30 percent of the speed of light and get it to the nearest star within 20 years is somewhere around entire energy use of the United States for an entire year. Now provided we can transition from fossil fuels fast enough that we can eventually use a combination of solar and advanced fusion to power our civilization we might eventually realistically expect to use between 100 and 10000 times as much total energy as we do now. This “energy rich” Earth of the future would be able to spare such missions, but they still wouldn’t be routine. Developing the entire solar system might give us access to another factor of 50 to 100 in terms of energy availability but given the actual vast size of the solar system we are talking at minimum a 1000 year prospect even with advanced self replicating robots and near exponential population growth.
Civilizations that old and technically advanced would almost certainly be able to harvest any kind of meat they wanted from advanced DNA manipulation and grow food pretty much anywhere, thus if they are harvesting us, it wouldn’t make sense to do so in terms of foodstuff. Maybe if there is some mystical type of universal overmind or something like in that famous science fiction book “Childhood’s End” it would make sense to want us, or at least the brains and bodies of the best of our species, but otherwise “harvesting” makes no sense economically or energetically.
Your post reminded me of this old Twilight Zone episode: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0734684/