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Awesome / World War

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  • When the Nazis use the Dora supergun against the landed Race starships in In the Balance. The Race assume the shell arcing miles into the sky towards them must be a missile, so hit it with their equivalent of Patriot counter-missiles... The text then makes an unprecedented cut to a third-person narrator who explains that counter-missile shrapnel works well against thin-skinned missiles... Not so much against solid seven-ton brass shells. And then the Race defenders get a moment of Oh, Crap! before it hits... Bonus: The ship had most of their nuclear weapons on board.
    • Actually, not. The ship with the nukes was the second hit. Yes, you've been reading right: Dora managed to shoot twice, and destroy two ships, before being located and destroyed.
    • Also, to be fair, the Race really has no other forms of defense that could stand up to a Dora shell. They later add more close-in defenses like machineguns, but even that would be useless against the Dora.
  • Those Wacky Nazis again, specifically Heinrich Jaeger's Panzer Company, when they fight and destroy several Lizard Landcruisers and Fighting Vehicles, considered one of the best small unit battles ever against the Lizards.
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  • One of the raids of Ludmila Gorbunova. She manages to cause a chain reaction explosion during a raid on a Race camp, getting away with minor damage to just her wings.
  • Just about anything done by Otto Skorzeny, at least until the cruel reminder near the end that we've been rooting for a hardcore Nazi this whole time.
  • When Stalin sets off the first human-built nuclear bomb, annihilating a significant fraction of the Lizard armed forces. (Later, when humans and Lizards start taking turns nuking each other's cities, it gets a lot darker. But that first human-built nuke is awesome.)
  • The moment in Homeward Bound when the crew of the Admiral Peary learn the Commodore Perry took five weeks to travel from Earth to Home.
    • And again shortly after, when the Race evens the playing field and begins to talk lasting peace... by explaining that their own starships can still be used as relativistic kill vehicles to obliterate just about all life on Earth if the Humans attack first.
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    • And even the five weeks is only the time to get to the outer edge of the Solar System before engaging the FTL drive, which is instantaneous.
  • During the Race invasion of Britain, the RAF duped the killercraft pilots into wasting dozens of missiles by using older aircrafts transformed into early remote-controlled drones. As soon as the missiles were exhausted, the actual fighters, comprising the Spitfires, the Hurricanes, the Mosquitoes, and the Gloster Meteors (Britain's first jet-powered combat aircraft), would engage their cargo aircrafts, forcing the killercrafts to engage in a battle at such low speeds that the RAF fighters had the manouverability advantage.
  • One for the Japanese Imperial Troops in China: they managed to shoot down a killercraft using massed fire from bolt-action rifles, hitting both engines.
  • Molotov's meeting with Atvar. He remains as impassive as a stone while dropping the bombshell that not only did the Russians murder their emperor (a Moral Event Horizon for the Race) but he himself took part in the Revolution.
  • Mutt, who killed a landcruiser by pitching a bottle of ether at the alien tank's engine.
  • All of England gets a Moment of Awesome for totally wrecking The Race during an attempted land invasion.
  • George Patton not only for routing the Race armies from taking Chicago, but for personally taking out a helicopter with a World War II jeep mounted machine gun.
  • In his Homeward Bound, the eighth novel following the beginning of his Worldwar series, humanity has been mostly conquered by alien overlords (the only independent human nations are: the US, Nazi Germany, the UK, Canada, the Soviet Union, and Japan... and Japan, The UK, and Germany aren't doing very well) then has proceeded to go through more technological development in the next 50 years than the alien invaders managed in a thousand times that. They then send a starship to the aliens' homeworld, interstellar travel previously being the exclusive domain of the aliens, and, while the aliens are discussing killing humanity off for safety's sake, they send another. And this one has FTL. Which the alien scientists refuse to believe is possible even after they see it. It ends with the Race regretting profusely that they ever invaded Earth, and getting ready to try to catch up to the people they deemed total barbarians 50 years before. Heck, the entire series is one, single, coherent Moment of Awesome for humanity.


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