Here’s the situation; the day nerds worldwide have been preparing for has arrived - zombie apocalypse. Zombies (the solanum kind) have been rampaging for months. You and your loved ones have found safety on a US Air Force base.
Naturally, you can fly planes and are asked one day to take up a B2 Spirit. The commanding officer hands you an envelope with the presidential seal that reads “ABOVE TOP SECRET” and instructs you to open it after an hour flying due east. You shrug and take off.
An hour passes and you open the envelope. It outlines the plan - a month ago, teams deployed massive speakers and generators in all major US cities, where the undead naturally congregate. Sound attracts them, as you know. They have loudly announced that survivors should immediately evacuate - the government (or what’s left of it) has also dropped leaflets and made radio broadcasts to this effect.
The generators are about to run out of power. The plan is to attract them all, then using your B2, drop a 340 kiloton B-61 nuke on them. It is signed by the Secretary of Agriculture (the current acting POTUS). It’s now or never - the zombies will start to disperse once the noise stops. Your target is Manhattan, New York City. Do you carry out your orders?
Obviously you cannot guarantee that you will not kill any survivors. During the Great Panic there was no time to evacuate anything of scientific, cultural or historic worth and now it is too dangerous - clearly these will all turn to radioactive slag.
(Inspired by the book Day by Day Armageddon where some cities in Texas get this treatment) Substitute ‘Tahiti’ for a destination of your choice.
I’m assuming, for purposes of this hypothetical, that we [humans] are going to lose the war otherwise. In that case, I think the continued survival of humans as a species overrides the value of any individual one(s) of us.
I say drop the nuke. As justification, I would say the same thing even if I were holed up in Manhattan at the time, unable to get out of the blast radius because of a broken leg.
No reason to make the zombies walk all the way to Texas. If the zombies are attracted to noise, why not just put all those speakers on the other side of the Hudson? Second best case scenario, they all die crossing the river. Best case scenario, we have an excuse to nuke New Jersey.
I get to nuke zombie New York and watch it burn. Hell yes. There is nothing irreplaceable in New York that we couldn’t live without or recreate and the zombies have to go, so there is no option. Cost of saving mankind. But I am heading to Tahiti because theSecretary of Agriculture kind of creeps me out.
“When the Secretary of Agriculture does it, that means it is not illegal.”
Zombie Richard M. Nixon
A) You received orders from the POTUS/Commander-in-Chief.
B) The Air Force base is currently able to deal with, or avoid, contamination.
C) Is Tahiti able to deal with the pandemic (or is it your choice to die in a prettier place)?
a) Nuking New York is a stupid plan. If they could lure the zombies somewhere, they could lure them into a wilderness area, or into the ocean (how about speakers on barges offshore?), minimizing collateral damage.
b) Now I’ve got a nuke and a means of delivery. I hereby declare myself King of Tahiti. Winning!!!
Drop the nuke on NYC; the benefits outweigh the drawbacks.
I don’t think a B-2 has the range to fly to NY and then to Tahiti, though. The base would probably fuel you up with only the fuel required for the mission (i.e., Whiteman AFB in Missouri to NYC and back.)