The afternoon of the next day, Peter and Michelle were in the living room of their apartment watching the news on TV.
President Price was giving another press conference.
“It causes me great pain to say this,” she said, “but all our efforts to eliminate the alien menace in Africa, through the use of airstrikes and drones, have failed. What’s worse, it is clear that the aliens have taken control of the vast majority of not only Africa, but also most of Latin America and Southeast Asia. Even our covert attempts at rooting out the aliens and their human carriers have been nothing less than frustrating.”
“So, what are we going to do, Madame President?” a reporter asked.
She let out a sigh, then said, “The time has finally come for more radical and sweeping measures to wipe out this menace.”
Gasps were heard among the reporters.
Peter and Michelle almost jumped off their sofa.
“Will these measures include…the use of…nuclear weapons?” the same reporter asked, with the deepest dread.
Price let out another sigh. “I’m…afraid so,” she said.
More gasps were heard…including in the living room.
“We’ll have to hit specified targets…in all three continents…to maximize the annihilation of the aliens while minimizing loss of human, animal, or plant life,” the president said, with more sighs.
More gasping, with indistinct chatter among the reporters.
“For fuck’s sake!” Peter said, shaking.
“Please, somebody, wake me up from this nightmare, now,” Michelle whispered.
“Where will the targets be?” another reporter asked.
“If I were to answer that question, Ted, the aliens would know, too,” Price said. “They’re following these news reports even more attentively than the average viewer is, for obvious reasons. But suffice it to say, our intelligence will know where the aliens are most concentrated.”
“In the Amazonian rainforest?” Peter shouted. “As if climate change wasn’t bad enough already. Apart from the fallout, think of the destroying of all those trees! There’ll be carbon dioxide everywhere!”
“The UCSA governments have gone insane,” Michelle said.
“I assure you, ” Price said. “We will use newly-made, miniaturized nuclear warheads, of roughly the size and power of the W54, which will do a minimal amount of damage, leaving a minimal area of fallout while effectively hitting their targets.”
“Somehow, I don’t find that very reassuring, Madame President,” Michelle said.