Thursday's got the dibs.|
Ion Mines are an archaic defensive weapon, mostly phased out by the start of the Orbital Wars. About the size of an average housing unit, they are detonated when a passing ship comes too close, usually within 5000 kilometers. The ship broken up into the smallest molecular components by being bombarded with charged ionic particles, after which all the particles become highly attracted to each other, and the entire ship and it's contents are compacted into a metallic sphere about the size of an Anduvian minimelon. These spheres are high collectable and can been seen in private displays across the Consortiums.|
The Terrans obtaining Ion Mines is the quintessential example of the internal problems the Union was experiencing during the outset of the Orbital Wars. The Manifesto of Qirel correctly pointed out that in order for the Union to properly react against the Encounter, Terra would have to be made a member of the Union. The speculations surrounding the possible effects of the Encounter fresh in their minds, the Union members quickly inducted Terra into the Union.
Once a member, the Terrans began exercising their right to "borrow" technology from other members. The problem was that the Terrans technically fell under Class G in the Union's civilization classification, and therefore such exchange of technology was in direct violation of the Anti-Hypergrowth Policy. This policy was meant to counteract the explosive results that occurred when a primitive civilization obtained advanced technology without learning the ethical and social lessons associated with it. This led to massive population growth and famine through the use of Allelodrene, and of course the Terran's early economic suicide by the use of Ion Mines.
After the Little Coup in which Terra (by means of unforeseen loopholes in Union policies) claimed the position of Senior Member in the Union, the international military staff of the fledgling galactic power made the decision to surround the nearby area of space with Ion Mines. Other factions, not wanting to take the risk of detonating the mines with their merchant ships, completely cut off trade with the Terrans. This led to drastic economic problems, although nothing nearly as serious as the [Xorm market crashes]?.
Not only did the other members distrust the Terrans because of their obnoxious seizure of power, diplomatic relations between Union members broke down, as diplomatic envoys were unable to make the journey to the new Union capital on Terra.
The destruction of the old Terran ways and the creation of the [New Unified Terrans]? is often compared to the detonation of an Ion Mine, the new metallic sphere shining with the hope of a brighter future for the Terrans. The prediction has thus far not been entirely incorrect.